AleSmith Speedway Stout - AleSmith Brewing Company

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AleSmith Speedway StoutAleSmith Speedway Stout

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BA SCORE
97
world-class

1,489 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

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Reviews: 1,489
Hads: 5,693
rAvg: 4.36
pDev: 8.94%
Wants: 836
Gots: 1,683 | FT: 153
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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-09-2002

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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 1,489 | Hads: 5,693
Photo of uberabr
4.75/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from the 750ml into a snifter

Pitch black, with a big, rich, creamy brown head that leaves rings of lace. Smells of deep espresso, honey, molasses and chocolate. On the phenolic side, some spices and a mild piney hop.

Taste is truly amazing. The overwhelmingly rich, creamy espresso and chocolate seem to predominate at first, but as your palate adjusts these bold flavors dissolve into subtle complexities. Hints of apricot, plums, cherries and white chocolate- even fresh spring water, cut vegetables, and asparagus- round out into a sweet caramel and molasses, walnuts, butter, and cream. Mouthfeel is great, but a tad on the oily, buttery side due to some diacetyl that would round out with age. Truly one of the beers I've ever had. Way to go, Alesmith. (772 characters)

Photo of tanarm
4.63/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I’ve had this one cellaring for a few months now and decided I couldn’t wait any longer.

The head is a light brown and the body pure black. It smells of chocolate and coffee. It is the coffee taste that hits you right away, too. Hints of roasted barley and molasses, maybe even a little nutty flavor in there somewhere, but it is all lost to the coffee and chocolate overtones. The finish is pure dark chocolate goodness that continues to linger on the tip of the tongue for at least ten seconds.

As it warms, the bitterness extends to the back of the tongue and even the roof of the mouth and gets stronger on the finish. You can definitely taste the alcohol in the aftertaste more as it warms, but it never overpowers, as the other tastes become more profound as well. Mouthfeel is almost like carbonated melted chocolate, very creamy. It coats the palate completely.

This is a delicious beer, and I must say one of my favorites. I have another bottle that is cellaring and I am interested in how the tastes will age, but I think this can't get much better. For the style, it is hard to beat. (1,108 characters)

Photo of MiScusi
4.23/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12-23-07
4.5 / 4 / 4.5 / 4 / 4
From a bottle. Chocolate, roast, coffee blend in aroma. Cocholate in the very end of the sip, and then sweet coffee after that in the aftertaste. Aftertaste is a pretty amazing blend of coffee and chocolate.

___
3-1-2007
4.5 / 4 / 4.5 / 4.5 / 4
Served in a goblet at the Stone Bistro. Appearance was a midnight brown with a caramel colored head that had great retention. Smell was chocolate and coffee. Taste was of strong chocolate and lots of coffee for the most part with a nice mellow roasted character as well. Alcohol was well hidden. Moutfeel was thick and full, carbonation very low for a nice smooth drink. (647 characters)

Photo of SacoDeToro
4.44/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2004 bottle opened and shared by fellow BA, KAME - thanks dude.

The beer poured a darker than dark coal black with no head. There was no pop when this beer was opened and it appeared flat.

The aroma of the beer was full of rich coffee, roasted malts, dark chocolate, and some faint vanilla. The high alcohol helped carry the aroma brilliantly.

The flavor of the beer was full of intense flavors that seamlessly transitioned from one to another. Coffee - Chocolate - Rich roasted malts. There were also flavors of some rum soaked fruits, like plums, raisins, and figs. The hops were very subdued and in the background.

The mouthfeel was thick and heavy. It coated your mouth with a ton of flavor. I only wish the beer weren't flat. A little carbonation would've been nice. From what I understand, the dudes at Alesmith made a slight miscalculation/assumption with respect to bottle conditioning the 2004 bottling. Subsequent batches have this corrected. The beer had a great creaminess to it that helped all the flavors blend together very smoothly.

This is a world-class beer that should grace everyone's beer collection. Buy some now and age it for a few years. (1,185 characters)

Photo of Onibubba
4.4/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

One of the highlights of a weekend full of tasting new beers. Wonderful aroma as soon as the cap is opened. Pours a deer rich black, with a very dark tan head. Seems bubbly and highly carbonated and you would think that this would be evident in the taste...But you would be wrong. Heady smells of coffee, chocolates, and malt as it swirlls around in the glass. The faintest smells of bourbon hinting at an alcohol bomb.

A wonderful taste that is eclipsed only my the marvelous mouthfeel. Chocolate and coffee do indeed make their presence known, but the alcohol hinted at in the smell remains elusive. Impressive feat for its abv. Mouthfeel is full and chewy, yet creamy. That high appearing carbonation reveals itself here as only the slightest tickle. Very well done Alesmith. Quite possibly the best Imperial Stout I've had the pleasure of drinking. (855 characters)

Photo of guitarmage
4.78/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: The blackest of the blacks, no light passes through, even at the bottom. The head is a coffee ice cream tan, foamy and inviting. The beer sticks to the glass like a root beer float.

Smell: Not surprisingly huge doses of coffee beans, sweetened up by big maltiness and alcohol, bourbon alcohol, spicy hops in the back, very aromatic.

Taste: Loads of coffee, sweetened with a heavy malt body, warm smooth alcohol, with notes of bourbon in the nose, trails off with peppery hops on the tongue. Coffee, sugar, alcohol. Big.

Mouthfeel: Flawless, creamy, a little sticky, full bodied, lightly carbonated, the foam sticks around and forces you to drink more of the beer.

Drinkability: Spectacular, at 12% ABV this could not be more drinkable. The beer can be sipped like a fine single malt scotch or guzzled down like a creamy shake. The beer is the best of both, and in my opinion you only need one of these 5ths to get a a great buzz from a great beer. (971 characters)

Photo of ChazMania
4.2/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Big A** bottle. I have been sitting on for a few months.

a- dark brown/black pour and thick like motor oil! the "glug glug" sound from the bottle to the glass is awesome.

s- coffee, chocolate, prune, dark cherry, fig.

t- same as above, rather robust and extremely complex.

m- chewy, this is a meal in a glass.

d- it will take me all night to drink this bottle. actually, i may have to cork it and finish tomorrow. it is so complex that it needs to be experienced, not downed to get through. (510 characters)

Photo of peabody
4.85/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Now this beer looks nice. It pours out a very black reddish brown with tons of creamy malt suds that come up two fingers and suspend themselves leaving lacing as they very slowly dissapate.
First smell is coffee and roasted malt. One person wrote he smelled leather, by golly I think I do too. Now the dark chocolate is coming through.Sweet malts and yeast come together to hide the alcohol.
Taste is the best.Bitter coffee and sweet caramel. Coffee is very strong here. Malt sweetness with raisin and cherry.I feel like I could chew this stuff.
Aftertaste is coffee but there is never any alcohol hint until you stop drinking this brew. Then the alcohol sets to the back of the throat.
I love this but know it's not a session beer. I sure would love to make it one though. (777 characters)

Photo of Phatz
4.87/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is everything divine about Stouts. WOW! All I can say is Oh my God. WOW!

Appearance: Pours absolute black. The tan head settles to a halo and it leaves some fine lacing for a 12.00 % beer.

Smell: The aroma is the perfect drum-roll to an absolutely grand flavor. The anticipation it induces is terrific. Smells of dark rum, leather, roasted malts, dark vinous cherry, chocolate and coffee... amazing.

Taste: I believe this is not beer. God melted perfect chocolate into port made by his own hand and infused it with coffee leaving the most rich and sensuous flavors imaginable.

Mouthfeel: It is like drinking liquid silk. Melted chocolate with just the right addition of butter to make a thick rich warm chewy feel across the palate.

Drinkability: This is a sipping beer. Still it is one I could live with if Speedway Stout and I were all that was left on earth.

Hope this is helpful.
Cheers! (922 characters)

Photo of ClockworkOrange
4.4/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Phatz for sharing his bottle - Poured from a 750ml bottle into a snifter glass. Appears pure black, letting no light pass through with a finger of dark tan foam. Smells of bitter roasted coffee, and grassy hops. Tastes of bittersweet cocoa and strong brewed coffee followed by a burst of hops. Thick in the mouth with light carbonation. The alcohol is so well hidden in this beer and it is satisfying to drink. A fantastic double stout. (446 characters)

Photo of rayjay
4.43/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2006 vintage, purchased in OR (who have a better selection of CA beers than I do here in CA >:-{

Very firm, oily, multi-colored head. The highlight is the extra creamy nitro mouthfeel that just melts on your tongue. Firm bitterness from the coffee, although it's flavor is hard to pinpoint; the beer has a deep roasted flavor that seems to be coming from all directions. Very dense, yet very easy to palate. Alcohol is extremely well hidden, and lightens the gravity more than it's tasted. Minor notes of leather, chocolate, and burnt crystal malts. All flavors blend together in perfect harmony, making for a great drinking experience.

Very highly recommended. Would it kill you guys to send some to N Cal every once in a while? Maybe drop some off on the way up to OR? (781 characters)

Photo of GbVDave
4.2/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml bottle into two pint glasses. Thanks to Killer for the assist! Extra special thanks to Mcallister for the hook up. Woo Hoo! Review #100!

A: I don't think they come much blacker than this! Tiny, dark brown cap of foam that disappears to a tiny ring.

S: Quite restrained in the nose. Roasted coffee, burnt brown sugar, and alcohol.

T: See above with the addition of cherries, raisins, dark chocolate, black pepper, boozy alcohol, with spicy hops in the finish.

M: Bitter, dry, and oily. Thinner that I expected. Very slick and slippery.

D: This is a brutal stout that is not to be toyed with. One bottle could be an afternoon project...for two people. I wish the alcohol flavor wasn't so pronounced. I subtracted points because of the ragged booziness. (785 characters)

Photo of gotbeer
3.93/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I sampled a bomber of this from the 06 vintage.

The appearance was like a great stout- dark, opaque, and with a mocha colored head.

The smell was very nice. Hints of chocolate.

The taste was big. Chocolate, coffee, and some noticable alcohol. It's a big imperial stout with some mocha notes to it.

The mouthfeel is thick and chewy.

Drinkability is good for the style. I don't know if the drinkability is good for the price around New England. Storm King, BBCS, and Stone IRS are also readily available for far less money, and all are delicious. Not to say Speedway was dissapointing- it is great. Worth a try on a special occasion. (647 characters)

Photo of vwcraig
4.7/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2006 bottle received in a trade with TheKegergator

Pours black with a short-lived mocha colored head. Some bubbles linger around on the top. Initial smells of dark-roasted coffee beans and bitter and sweet chocolate. Very appetizing nose. First taste is dominated by the coffee and chocolate. A light bitterness that hangs around is there also. Light warming alcohol sensation is felt until you get a few drinks into it. Heavy and filling mouthfeel that is silky and slick. Very low carbonation and extremely smooth drinking for 12% ABV. Favorite stout of mine so far and worth the buzz. I would love to keep this in rotation with Storm King and Expedition if I had it around. Will definitely track this down again and again. (728 characters)

Photo of shroompod
4.35/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sitting in the cellar about a year.

Pours with an exceptional rocky chocolate head that lasts a glass full.

Smell has dark roasted coffee, some caramel. Faint hops.

I taste bittersweet chocolate, dark roasted coffee, good hop bittering.Very slight alcohol presence.

Mouthfeel is thick , very well carbonated.

Overall this beer is joy to drink, very drinkable with the high ABV . (393 characters)

Photo of orfeu
4.87/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Profuse thanks to dmeadows for sending me this wonderful surprise in our last trade -- maximum respect, Denis! Poured at a chilly cellar temperature (it's fuckin' cold out tonight, man!) into an AleSmith 10th Anniversary commemorative tulip. Dense, ponderous ebony with a small but dense, oily, whipped mocha head. Intense chocolate aromas; coffee scents swirl in and out among mellow toffee wisps and cacao liqueur-doused cherry notes. Outstanding nose, tempting and provoctative. Massive alcohol-infused chocolate bitterness smacks the palate up front with burnt malt and coffee flavors fighting for distinction shortly thereafter. A blackened dark fruit puree, remeniscent of charred currants and plums, emerges somewhere in the middle, right before a nearly acrid coffee flavor washes over and finishes, all with a truly tongue-numbing buzz that lasts for several long minutes. Sweet cherry-chocolate memories in the aftertaste with a demure yet bright espresso kick. Oil-like viscousness on the palate; thicker than all but one other beer I've sampled (Goose Island Bourbon County Stout). Alcohol is certainly present with a noticeable slickness and pepperiness in the mouthfeel, but it is never intrusive, only ever adding to the complexity of this fascinating stout. Coffee flavors become more prominent as the beer warms, lending a fuller, more well-rounded experience. Really wonderful, persistent head retention, with frothy sheets of lacing. This is a perfect beer to share or to sip slowly over the course of two or three hours. I will without fail continue to seek this out again and again, hopefully bringing back several bottles from my upcoming trip to Arizona in March. Thank you, AleSmith for this phenomenal experience. (1,738 characters)

Photo of badbeer
4.32/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 1.5 year aged bottle, IIRC.

Black in color, light tan head with some lacing. Smell is of cocoa, chocolate, roastiness and a little bit of cream. Much of the same in the taste, long, dry roasty finish. Full bodied, fairly low in carbonation. Overall this was a very good beer, but I think I'd like to try a non-aged bottle for comparison. (342 characters)

Photo of Greenfloyd
4.77/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer....now serving breakfast sans coffee....

This incredible beer poured an unforgiving, moonless midnight into my glass. The smells of dark chocolate, coffee, and roasted malt give way to a rich chestnut colored head. The taste matched the smells beautifully as nuances of chocolate, espresso, toffee, and incredibly subtle warming alcohol notes (surprisingly subtle for the 12 percent ABV that this huge stout carries) hit you in stages. The body was medium heavy, not to thick, but still a good representation of the heaviness of an American Double Stout. This beer went great with baked ham, but on it's own is definitely an option...Enjoy (647 characters)

Photo of tattooedtolley
4.82/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: thick black pour, very dark tan/light brown head.

Smell: Coffee, hints of chocolate, a bit of a dark/slightly fruity smell, a little alcohol too.

Taste: Big roasted malt flavor with perfect coffee notes. The alcohol is apparent but not overpowering the taste. Eventhough they dont stand out too much, the hops are taming what could be a very sweet beer, which is appreciated.

Mouthfeel: Thick in body, very smooth however, silky.

Drinkability: This beer was perfect served at cellar temp and eventhough I enjoyed this beer over a couple hours, it never became too warm even with the fireplace going. A delicious stout and inspite of the alcohol, very drinkable. (688 characters)

Photo of tonistruth
4.65/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2005 vintage, opened 1/24/07

A- pours black and looks thick, two finger thick & creamy tan head sporting excellent retent, and eventually settles to a nice ring, thin tan lacing.

S- coffee, burnt malts, sweet cream, slight alcohol

T- lost of malt, burnt & roasted. roasted coffee flavor, creamy sweetness as well, roasted coffee aftertaste. only hints of alcohol throughout

M- creamy full (and filling) body, slides over palate

D- wonderful malty flavor, complex and mellow. filling brew and very satisfying, dont really need another because this can be enjoyed for quite some time. alcohol is amazingly well hidden. I enjoyed mine over a two hour period, and is was an amzing experience. (703 characters)

Photo of Osiris9588
4.31/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, capped and wrapped in silver foil. Pours a motor oil black, opaque with a creamy 4-finger head; it eventually receds into a foamy, firm cap in the center of the glass. Beautiful.

The smell is of sweet chocolate and cocoa, along with toasted malt and oats. The flavor follows, very chocolatey, with some coffee, roasted nuts, and smoky wood.

The mouth is full-bodied and complex, yet still maintains a delighful creaminess. Very drinkable--a wonderful stout. (478 characters)

Photo of hopsaplenty
3.3/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750ml green (why?) bottle. No date info, but it is silkscreened and came topped with silver foil. Picked-up via trade in November 2005, and has sat in the cellar ever since.

Deep black with mud brown edges. Towering, crackling head of jumbled espresso colored bubbles topped with a fine layer of crema. Pock marks slowly develop as the head drifts down to a pillowy cover. Slow rising carbonation. The aroma is noticeable at a distance, sweetened coffee, chocolate milkshake, smoked caramel, roasted pine cone, and a bit of alcohol. The taste is hot with alcohol and a coffee roastiness is set firmly in the background. Dry pine carries into the finish along with a bit of smokiness. A dry, baker’s chocolate flavor becomes apparent, but is covered by the alcohol. The body feels thin, and the mouthfeel light with fine carbonation. This has a dry, dusty feeling. The alcohol starts to dominate and detract from the overall flavor. I am left wondering where the body went and what happened to the complexity. The bottle indicates that it can be cellared for 6-24 months, and this was only down there for 15 months, so it should have held up better.

Meh. I was expecting more. (1,182 characters)

Photo of Tyrawlings
4.27/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. Champagne bottle poured into a tulip glass.

A: Pitch black. Not a shimmer of light passes through the tulip glass. Hazel brown two finger head lingers for a spell then breaks down into a spider web like lacing.

S: Rich roasted coffee. Bitter baker's chocolate. Some dark fruit presense and warming alcohol.

T: Fine and rich roasted coffee are followed by a dark chocolate creaminess. Dark fruit or black currants and malts smooth the tasting experiance. Warm alcohol finishes prickly and dry.

M: Luxurious and rich. Minimal carbination. Warm alcohol is very drying.

D: The high alcohol content limits the amount imbibed in one evening but the beer is addicting. Each sip leaves you wanting more. I enjoyed this beer with a nice steak dinner and then with a piece of chocolate cake for dessert. A must try! (827 characters)

Photo of UncleJimbo
4.18/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750-mL bottle. Bottled 1/20/06, consumed 3/10/06.

This coffee stout poured black as night with tal, brown foam that persisted and clung to the glass. The smell was malty with notes of oatmeal(?), a hint of sweetness, and some hops underneath all the malt. The taste was dominated bby coffee (not surprisingly). It was sweet and rich and malty with chocolate flavors coming through more as the beer warmed. There was also a light taste of alcohol. The mouthfeel was smooth and creamy with full body and moderate carbonation feel. It was a tad warming. This was a very nice, rich stout. (587 characters)

Photo of WanderingFool
4.16/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Speedway Stout pours an ink black into the glass with a thick, tan rocky head on top. The foam dissolves slowly leaving behind a lot of netted lace on the glass. The aroma was a bit more mild than I thought it would be. It's mainly roasted malt, coffee and nuts with a bit of alcohol mixed in.

Each sip of this full bodied beer is smooth and slightly chewy with a dry finish. The flavor has a lot of roasted malt with notes of coffee, chocolate and nuts. Towards the end some bitter hoppy notes move it to help balance out all the malt. Once gone some coffee and nut flavors linger on the palate.

For 12% alcohol this beer hides its strength rather well. It's very flavorful, fairly balanced and easy to drink. I'd give it a higher score if the aroma was a bit stronger. (776 characters)

AleSmith Speedway Stout from AleSmith Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 1,489 ratings.