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AleSmith Speedway Stout - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
AleSmith Speedway StoutAleSmith Speedway Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

4,675 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,675
Reviews: 1,396
rAvg: 4.4
pDev: 8.86%
Wants: 745
Gots: 1,315 | FT: 132
Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Jet Black, with an off-white head. Starts with a strong coffee and dark chocolate sensation, then fades to a multitude of toasty, roasty and caramel malt flavors. Clean and crisp, full- bodied. Warmth from the high alcohol content lightens up the feel. You won't fool your taste buds - this beer is HUGE!

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-09-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,675 | Reviews: 1,396 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bs870621345

New Jersey

4.78/5  rDev +8.6%

Pours black with a 1/2 inch of mocha head. Leaves lacing around the glass.

Smells of coffee, alcohol, dark fruits.

Tastes of coffee, fruit, molasses and caramel. It has a low hop bitterness and the bitterness is from the coffee.

Mouthfeel is lightly carbonated and creamy. Its truly remarkable.

Drinkability is high, except for alcohol. At 12% its a hefty brew, but extremely drinkable for that much.

Overall a great beer, I'm really enjoying this and the second bottle I have stashed away.

08-22-2010 20:38:54 | More by bs870621345
Photo of snpub540


4.3/5  rDev -2.3%

Pours a pretty much black void with a hint of dark brown around the edges. No head at all even with a vigorous pour. Pretty much no lacing at all but I wasn't expecting any from such a big beer.

Smell is a nice blend of coffee and roasted malts. Hints of raisins and other dark, ripe fruits create a very vinous like nose.

Taste is exceptional. It is a very complex mix of coffee and roasty goodness with hints of nutty malt flavors. There is the ripe fruit flavor along with a strong bitter woody finish and the slow warmth of alcohol as it slides down your throat. Definately a sipper but incredibly smooth.

The mouthfeel is very velvety and smooth. I enjoyed every sip of this and it would be perfect on a cold night. Drinkability is pretty good for such a big beer, but its definately better to share this bottle. A winner here for sure.

08-21-2010 05:08:32 | More by snpub540
Photo of thatsfine


4.25/5  rDev -3.4%

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Pitch black appearance with a two finger dark tan head that dissipates pretty slowly and leaves nice lacing.

Chocolate and coffee to the nose. Nothing too complicated but very inviting.

The taste immediately gives me chocolate and coffee but neither is overpowering. In the aftertaste, the coffee dominates. Plenty of roasted malts. Delicious. Not as much alcohol heat as I expected.

Thick, creamy mouthfeel and pretty low carbonation. This is a pretty filling beer.

The low carbonation makes it easier to drink, but this is definitely still a sipping beer.

08-21-2010 02:32:45 | More by thatsfine
Photo of newk340


4.25/5  rDev -3.4%

Poured in a Duvel tulip and bottle split with hu5om.

A: thick black pour, voluptuous tan 2-finger head that left excellent lacing.

S: a pleasing blend of chocolate and coffee.

T: a blast of coffee that sizzles for a few seconds before fading to a bitter chocolate with the swallow, oddly still leaves a coffee aftertaste with hints of caramel and malts.

MF/D: a brief sizzle of carbonation with a nice smooth swallow.

08-16-2010 22:14:29 | More by newk340
Photo of Schmaltzy


4.35/5  rDev -1.1%

A- Pours jet black with dark tan 1-2 finger head, good retention with lace clumping all over my glass.

S- Nice almost dark fruit with roasted malt and tons of dark chocolate coffee flavors, followed by a slight warming cherry sherry scent.

T- Very similar to the smell which is very nice, however this bottle is still young and has a slight bitter hop finish which will die in 1-2 years of cellaring.

M- Full body beer with tons of flavors a slight warming alcohol presence and almost too much carbonation on this beast, let it mellow for 1-2 years and re-review is best.

D- For being 12% alcohol, I finished a 750ml and started on some Stone Self Righteous, with some age this would be fantastic.

08-09-2010 03:36:10 | More by Schmaltzy
Photo of TheJollyHop


4.5/5  rDev +2.3%

2008 Vintage poured into a tulip glass

Style: Chocolate and molasses scents emanate from a rich, two toffee brown fingers of frothy head crowning a viscous, opaquely black body; superb head retention with blankets of lace.

Plums in the nose with undertones of dark roasted coffee. Sherry like notes, cherries, cinnamon, hint of vanilla extract. Creamy, silky coffee middle mixed with caramel. Chocolate upfront with a roasted malt finish. Moderate bitterness with alcohol warmth throughout. A touch of grassy hops flavor as well.

Opinion: Sweetness is not cloying and the body is surprisingly not as full bodied as I expected. Couple that with an overall balanced flavor profile. Fantastic!

08-06-2010 01:27:07 | More by TheJollyHop
Photo of GJ40

North Carolina

4.9/5  rDev +11.4%

Sampled from a 750ml bottle in my DFH snifter. No date on the bottle but I've been aging it for a year or so. Started at 50 degrees then it warmed from there.

A - A deep, dark black with no light coming through. Topped with a big, tan head that dissipates pretty quickly. It looks like something you could fall into and never be seen again.

S - Cocoa, molasses, vanilla and coffee. I was pleasantly surprised that the coffee didn't overpower it. I was a bit worried when I realized it had actual coffee in it.

T - Smooth and creamy. The coffee is there but it's joined by plenty of other flavors including cocoa, vanilla, molasses and a hop bitterness. Everything works in perfect harmony. There's no harshness or imbalance at all. And the 12% alcohol is completely hidden except for a gradual warming feeling.

M - As silky as any beer I've had. The low carbonation makes it slide right down.

D - A great beer to sip slowly while unwinding at the end of the day.

08-05-2010 22:09:59 | More by GJ40
Photo of rfgetz

New Jersey

4.3/5  rDev -2.3%

Pours a deep dark near black with adequate cap of brown, creamy head, leaving a nice cap and decent lacing. Smell brings a mellow but good scent of fresh roasted coffee beans with a light touch of cream. A faint nuttyness from the roast and malts is also present along with a bit of boozy cherry liqour. Initial taste brings a quick touch of warm, cherry liqour like boozyness (my first hint that this 2010 release should have aged longer), as it sits the flavors develop into a smooth creamy taste of dark roasted (but not burnt) espresso beans with nice touched of chocolate and cream. Faint hints of spice, like cinammon on the palate as well as minor notes of vanilla from the oak. Full bodied, rich, creamy without being too heavy, perfect carbonation. A great tasting beer that could only improve with age.

08-02-2010 13:19:45 | More by rfgetz
Photo of regspeir


4.28/5  rDev -2.7%

Got to try this thanks to a trade with Snojerk321. 750 ml bottle poured into a snifter. Poured a dark brown to black with a one-finger black head that settled into a spotty large-bubbled coating. Lacing is pretty heavy and lasting. Nose is coffee, vanilla, roasted malt and bourbon. Taste is roasted coffee, chocolate and bourbon up front, with notes of vanilla and dark fruit. Finish is both dry and sweet. Mouthfeel is medium to thick, creamy with good carbonation. Not much that would give away the ABV. It's not difficult to understand why this is universally considered a great coffee stout and I would love another!

07-29-2010 02:03:43 | More by regspeir
Photo of Jayli


4.38/5  rDev -0.5%

Picked this up a few months ago
Poured in to my Portsmouth tulip

A: This beer pours an opaque black with a two finger of rich, rocky, creamy, mocha colored head. Head retains nicely and leaves clumps of lacing on the glass.

S: Nose is roasted, burned, and charred malts, licorice, milk chocolate, and a minor hint of alcohol.

T: Taste starts with a dose of milk chocolate that quickly moves in to a bitter baker's chocolate. Licorice and dark fruit then start to creep in to fill out the middle, come cherry and...can't figure out the other flavoring though. Charred, burnt malts really finish this out with a bit of espresso, and some smoked oak flavoring. Some alcohol burn on the way down.

M: Full body, low carbonation, rich, silky, creamy body.

D: Somewhat filling, great kick, great representation of style, this is a phenomenal stout that I wish I had a few more bottles of!

07-29-2010 01:45:26 | More by Jayli
Photo of Axic10

New Jersey

4.7/5  rDev +6.8%

Poured from 750ml bottle into a snifter.

Appearance: Pours a pitch black with two fingers of mocha colored head that settles down to about a finger for the rest of the drink.

Smell: Rich dark chocolate, fudge brownies, roasted malt, roasted coffee, cocoa and some molasses. As it warms the aroma has a hint of alcohol burn but the aroma is just amazing.

Taste: Dark chocolate, roasted malts, coffee and cocoa balanced together nicely. Slight alcohol burn, but nothing offensive.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied and incredibly smooth.

Drinkability: Wow, while I can't drink more than a bottle of this in an evening, I giving this a 5 for drinkability, because I will definitely be buying this again. Such a tasty stout. I would really love to try the BA version of this and compare.

07-28-2010 01:37:46 | More by Axic10
Photo of bump8628


4.35/5  rDev -1.1%

A big bottle all to myself to celebrate my last night in the land of incredible beers (southern California).

Completely black with a thick mat of light brown head that never considers yielding.

Dark roasted malts abound. Bitter chocolate, espresso, dark caramel, and coffee...and the coffee is smooth and vibrant, soft and full-flavored, creamy and never bitter. Speaking of bitter, the hops take care of that, balancing this load of malt and sweetness and contributing to the overall complexity with a dose of earthiness.

Just a supreme stout. And so far, the best beer I've had that has incorporated coffee.

07-27-2010 13:48:37 | More by bump8628
Photo of impending


4.55/5  rDev +3.4%

750ml into a tulip. Pours brown bear at midnight dark. One finger big bubble head, I can see myself wave in the largest yet leaves sticky lacing.

Top of the line aroma, big, dark and rich, as fine as there is. Easy to linger, a delicious smell.

The taste exceeds what the nose promised. The best single word description is rich. The dark chocolate bitter aftertaste is unmatched. This is a big beer, a special occasion beer, a sipping beer, ultimate cold winter night in front of a fire beer, a damn fine beer on a Sunday afternoon beer.

07-25-2010 21:42:30 | More by impending
Photo of perrymarcus


4.05/5  rDev -8%

750ml bottle served in a tulip.

pours a silky, deep blackish brown with a thin mocha/tan toned head that quickly disspiates into a collar around the glass.

smell is alive with roasted malt, coffee, chocolatey goodness - wow! smells decadent... taste follows the nose, but less so than i had presumed; a bit disappointing considering the promise of the aroma. there's a bitterness to it that is not entirely pleasant... strong coffee flavors from the nose pull through; molasses; dark chocolate. 12% ABV very well hidden.

has a silky mouthfeel, a bit thin, with low carbonation. i would definitely have another, and a finely crafted brew this is, though in the final analysis i'd put it a step behind my favorite imperial stouts... IMO not sure it lives up to the substantial hype.

07-25-2010 00:26:10 | More by perrymarcus
Photo of GregSVT


3.33/5  rDev -24.3%

750ml bottle into a snifter - 2009 Vintage

A: Pours a deep black with ruby tinges on the side and a small dark tan head that fades quickly and leaves some lacing on the glass. I poured this pretty vigorously and it barely produced a small head...I'd like to see more than that otherwise great.

S: The nose is amazing. Roasted malt leads to a coffee aroma with vanilla and cocoa in the background. I literally said "oh my god" when I took my first whiff.

T: The taste is much different from the nose. It starts slightly sour with a lot of dark fruit and that leads to a vanilla and coffee flavor. Not as impressive as the nose led on but not bad either.

M: The feel is pretty thick and oily. Not a whole lot of carbonation which isn't a bad thing for an Impy Stout.

D: I'd like to try this again before I give my final verdict. Perhaps I'll get the new 2010 vintage and have it fresh.

I can't even imagine what the smell and taste would be on the barrel aged version...must be out of this world.

07-24-2010 01:34:55 | More by GregSVT
Photo of TKEbeerman


4.38/5  rDev -0.5%

Poured into my SN XXX glass this stout pours black as the tar that lines the Daytona 500 speed way. The exceptional head is just about 3 fingers thick, and a rich chocolate cream color. On the way down, this brew leaves a considerable amount of lace for it's ABV. Truly the best stout I've ever seen poured (along with a Yeti...tied for first).

S: This stout has a real high level of roastyness in it's nose. Similar really to a porter more then a stout. Notes of chocolate and slight espresso. The nose is a little lack luster, given this stout's reputation.

T: The taste is excellent. Noting harsh, and really smooth. Roasted coffee beans and bitter chocolate. The hop bill in this one really adds a good balance of bitterness to the chocolate. Espresso really kicks in as the beer warms.

MF: The mouthfeel of this stout is lighter then I'd prefer. The body and carbonation booth. And the drinkability is better then expected for a brew this big.

07-21-2010 22:16:53 | More by TKEbeerman
Photo of WeimtimeBier


4.33/5  rDev -1.6%

A- Pitch black with a finger thick mocha head that remained strong all the way down the snifter glass.

S- strong molassess that was not too sweet like most imperial stout. Very strong coffee and mocha notes.

T- Thick coffee bean taste with some molassess. light alcohol sweetness that was not overpowering. Not as sweet as expected which i realy liked. THis brought out the coffee flavors better.

M- moderate to heavy body and very creamy with a smooth carbonation.

D- Very drinkable due to a well rounded taste and a light alcohol presence. For being 12% this beer was incredible.

07-17-2010 20:06:19 | More by WeimtimeBier
Photo of Luk13

Quebec (Canada)

4.68/5  rDev +6.4%

Bottle via trade with Blankboy. This beer is huge. Jet black pour with brown head. Aroma is super rich, coffee with also lots of licorice, molasses and also something vanilla about it too. Taste is just awesome rich coffee flavors, with some vanilla smoothness great bitter/sweet mix. Palate is perfectly creamy with just enough carbonation, one of the best I've had.

07-15-2010 17:41:27 | More by Luk13
Photo of TommyW


4.35/5  rDev -1.1%

A- Motor oil black with a thin, tan head with some maroon tints to it.

S- Deep roasted character with notes of coffee.

T- Dark fruits lend a little sweetness upfront, some roasted character and coffee come in and an intense bitter, dark chocolate flavor comes in last; create in bitter finish.

M- Medium silky body with a medium carbonation.

D- A solid stout for sure; hides the abv amazingly well, and drinks pretty easily for such a big beer.

07-15-2010 12:35:40 | More by TommyW
Photo of glazeman


3.85/5  rDev -12.5%

2009 Vintage poured from a 750 ml bottle into a snifter. Split with airohead2001, big thanks!

A: opaque black with some brown on the edges when held up to a light. Nice one finger cappuccino colored head. Good head retention with a nice swirl of bubbles and a crown that both last for the duration of the drink. Nice lacing as well.

S: Quite a nice smelling beer, although on the sweeter side as far as smell and not quite as complex as I had hoped. The coffee is there, but is hidden pretty well behind the sugary sweetness. Smells a lot like CBS. Some alcohol on the nose.

T: This is a lot sweeter than I was expecting up front. Almost like slightly sour maple syrup. Then at the finish I get lots of coffee, toast, and some bitterness.

M: A bit thin for my liking. Not nearly as thick or chewy as a lot of other top stouts, but it does have a nice level of carbonation.

D: Overall a pretty good beer. I think the drinkability is quite high for the ABV. Glad I have another bottle of this to age for awhile, I think this one will get a lot better over time as the sweetness mellows out. Kind of like 2010 Dark Lord, I think the potential is there, but currently somewhat lacking.

07-10-2010 03:46:39 | More by glazeman
Photo of airohead2001


3.83/5  rDev -13%

Poured into a snifter from a 750ml bottle. Split with glazeman.

A - Beautiful looking stout. Pitch black with a nice tan one finger head that eventually fades to thick bubbles around the edge. Great lacing that coats the rims of my snifter for the remainder of the drink.

S - Pretty good - bitter coffee, alcohol, some light malts, and some dark fruits.

T - This one is pretty interesting. When it was cold out of the bottle, it was really sweet up front with some harsh bitter roasts at the end. Closer to room temperature, things are a bit more complex, but not necessarily more tasty - after some warming, this one has bitter roasts through out with an interesting sweet and sour taste in the beginning. There is also some nuttiness in the finish.

M - Average mouthfeel. Not too thin, but I would have definitely liked it to be a bit thicker and chewier.

D - Very drinkable. A tasty stout indeed and very well balanced. The high ABV is well hidden.

07-10-2010 03:07:12 | More by airohead2001
Photo of BS68280

South Carolina

4/5  rDev -9.1%

Yet another top notch beer from my trip to San Diego. I am really thinking I would spend too much money if I lived out here. I have no idea how to tell what year this one is (I would assume the newest). Poured into Lost Abbey stem glass.

A: Black. I started to think it was flat because there was absolutely no head, then all of a sudden, about a finger or two of tan head popped up. Sticks around for a while on the edges and leaves some good lacing.

S: Roasted coffee, roasted malts, vanilla and a little caramel. A little bit of booze.

T: Lots of roasted coffee, a toasty burnt malt taste, bitter hints of chocolate, touch of vanilla and only the faintest touch of dark fruits.

M: Pretty full bodied, not crazy thick by any means. Sticky.

D: Hides the 12% very well. I could sip on this for a long time.

Don't know if I like this of FBS better but they are both great beers.

07-09-2010 03:11:42 | More by BS68280
Photo of nerdrocker101


4.68/5  rDev +6.4%

Bottle thanks to checkii, which I believe to be an 07'

Pours a rich black with a thin, lightly browned head.

Smells of chocolate and coffee.

The coffee notes are muted due to the aging. But there are huge flavors of molasses, chocolate, and light notes of espresso. Much like a chocolate covered espresso bean.

Thick, almost chewy. Certainly lingers on the palate. The alcohol is pretty well masked.

07-08-2010 21:01:20 | More by nerdrocker101
Photo of Chico1985


4.9/5  rDev +11.4%

Much thanks to cbutova for breaking this bad boy out. Split between 5 people I believe. It was about 9 months old.

Pours inky black with a super creamy, bubbly tan head. Retains very well and leaves great lacing. Mouth is watering.

Strong, excellent coffee in the scent. Booze and vanilla give it a bourbon vibe. A little bit of dark fruit.

The coffee is strong, rich and dark tasting ala Peche Mortel, this reminds me of that quite a bit. Chocolate covered raisins and vanilla. A little bit of grassy hops. More sweet than roasty in my opinion but overall a good balance of both. Aftertaste is amazing, booze is well-hidden.

Mouthfeel is extremely creamy and have a nice thickness. Just like everything else about this beer, pretty much perfect for the style.

I couldn't drink this all day, but damn drinkable for 12%, and oh so tasty. Probably the best coffee stout I have had so far. I vow to get a few of these bottles.

** 10/11/11 - more notes **

After having this twice, but with small pours (~5 oz) on both occasions, I'm finally sitting down with a fresh 750ml solo. Definitely a bit boozier than I remember, but I believe both of the other times I had it it was aged 9+ months. Huge coffee beans and chocolate fudge, big dark fruit, some vanilla and some hop bitterness there too. The 12% makes itself known but it's not overly hot and this beer definitely improves with warmth. Maybe not my favorite coffee stout but certainly top 5. Great fresh but maybe a bit better with a little bit of age on it, the coffee sticks around but the alcohol is tamed.

07-03-2010 16:06:14 | More by Chico1985
Photo of trygger87


4.18/5  rDev -5%

Picked up a 750 ml bottle in SF CA. Beer pours a wonderful tar black with very little head that goes away very quickly.Smell is of an alcohol spiked black coffee, not getting much else just coffee and booze. Taste is coffee up front, then i get this sherry taste followed up by a nice malt character. Mouth feel is silky and smooth, i love it. Drinkability is great, dont taste any offensive alcohol tones. Very smooth for a 12 percent, i love this beer.
Over all a very very solid brew that i would happily pick up again.

07-03-2010 04:49:02 | More by trygger87
AleSmith Speedway Stout from AleSmith Brewing Company
98 out of 100 based on 4,675 ratings.