AleSmith Speedway Stout - AleSmith Brewing Company

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AleSmith Speedway StoutAleSmith Speedway Stout

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1,483 Reviews
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Reviews: 1,483
Hads: 5,678
rAvg: 4.36
pDev: 8.94%
Wants: 836
Gots: 1,681 | FT: 154
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: 1,483 | Hads: 5,678
Photo of weeare138
4.52/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to grassrootsvt for sharing this bottle...
Appears a pitch black with a dark tan head that slowly fades out. Plenty rings of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is roasty, with caramel, coffee, cocoa, and vanilla.
Taste is of the same aromas maybe toned down slightly in a nicely contained mix that is addictive.
Mouthfeel is sweet, full bodied, with coffee bitterness and sugary complexities.
I really enjoyed this. The only problem was that the 12% abv was well noticable, which makes this more of a sipper. (525 characters)

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

Finally I am getting around to trying this beer. Poured into my NB globe glass it is pitch black with a beautiful 1 inch beige head that didnt go down. Smell is phenomenal, dark chocolate, hints of roast coffee, just perfect for a stout. Taste is the same, dark chocolate, followed by coffee roastyness. Truely amazing. I felt mouthfeel could be a bit thicker, but still it was better than most. Drinkability is only hindered by the price, which this is definitly worth. Probably the greatest stout I have ever had thus far, if you can find this, get it, you wont be disappointed. (580 characters)

Photo of SwillinBrew
4.75/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at Hollingshead. Actually, until this one, i've never seen nitro used at the Head.

Well, this poured a beautiful black as midnight color that was like an expresso without any cream. No light shined thru and the head had a chocolate chip cookie color to it. My head was actually 4 inches high and i was going to ding for that, but actually, i attribute this to the Head having the wrong mix of nitro.
The aromatics were pure "roasting on an open fire" roastiness, burnt toast and coffee. The tidal wave of scented goodness really slaps you like a pimp.
The flavors are just immaculate. A tidal wave of cocoa, coffee, caramel and crisp toast bread flood your palate then divide and conquer. While i detected the alcohol, it was nicely woven in with the flavors. There's no doubt you just had some speedway stout... you wont forget it.
Quite heavy on the tongue and a bit chewey. I like the carbonation because you'd think it would lean towards being flat, but it's not. My advise, get some of this and drink it! Then drink more! This is the best stout i've ever had. (1,086 characters)

Photo of TrickKnee
3.9/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Wow, what a stout. The ratings and reviews speak for this beer alone and let me tell you the taste goes right along with it. Not being a huge stout fan i was delighted to see an amazing taste. Poured a deep dark color, (duh, its a stout) with a small amount of head. Rich chocolate , coffee and roasted flavors that linger in your mouth. Cant wait to try it again. (364 characters)

Photo of TastyTaste
4.8/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Received in BIF Across America on April 11th from Zorro. Huge thanks to Zorro. Bottle is green glass (who knew? it looked almost like black painted glass in the bottle.)
Appearance: Poured into a Duvel tulip, the head is gigantic and firm, very slow fading. The body is about as black and foreboding as you could exepct. Very nice.

Smell: Chocolate frosting and a whole pile of espresso. Vanilla, alcohol, round out the nose, excellent.

Taste: Rich and strong, the vanilla and coffee flavors are boisterous and delicious. The alcohol adds a burn, but is also adds more strength and flavor. This is one great beer, easily holding it's own versus any double stouts in the world.

Drinkability: Every sip starts smooth (due to the flavor and the great mouthfeel) and different flavors slowly work their way into the forefront. If you have the means, get a bottle, it is wonderful. (886 characters)

Photo of RoyalT
4.47/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – This thick, dark liquid was basic black with a modest head on a lame pour that showed great persistence. The ale itself though it so dark and formidable-looking.

Smell – The big black coffee takes charge of the nose. The dark fruits are here but very light. There’s a rough, boozy character that I remember from the bottled version that smells maybe like wood or barrel-aging, although this is not the barrel-aged sample.

Taste – The roasty malts come out more at the taste. The coffee is now more in the background of the flavor profile. Everything else from the nose makes its way to the tongue with a little added chocolate to boot.

Mouthfeel – This is nearly full-bodied with some roasty bitterness throughout.

Drinkability – I’ll have to say, two nights of solid IPA drinking at O’Brien’s and this was one of the highlights for me. It’s not a rare beer in SoCal by any means, but boy is this tasty on-tap. (945 characters)

Photo of kdmorse
4.73/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Rich coffee, chocolate, and roasted flavors and smells throughout. Amazing and strong. Looks great. Lacing for days. Smells amazing. Tastes even better. Creamy and enjoyable. Easy to drink for a huge stout like this. Alcohol sneaks through a bit in the scent and the taste, but not bad for a 12%er. Great young. Need to get a few to put away and age. (350 characters)

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

Opaque black. Very nice. Not much head though, but to be expected due to high ABV.

Nose is coffee, espresso, dark chocolate, and brown bread.

On the palate is a pleasant syrupy roasted malt character with balancing hops. Amazingly balanced, and the high alcohol is more subdued than I expected. Amazing beer.

Finish never ends. (330 characters)

Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.75/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to SkinnyElvis for this one.

This beer pours a very dark black with just a few burgundy highlights. The head consisted of a creamy film of copper tan that left some great lace behind.

Smells of dark caramel and milk chocolate with a well paired aromatic hop with some nectarines and a light pine. There’s also a light alcohol that creeps in and compliments the existing aromas by bringing out some dry dark chocolate and a hop dryness. I must say that this is a textbook blend of malt and hops here, IMO.

Tastes of woody dark barley, a lighter dark chocolate, some raisin sweetness with some sweet cream and a pinch of nutmeg. There’s also an light oak that fades to coffee but then falls all the way to roasted espresso in the finish.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a moderate carbonation that’s a little sticky and coats my mouth.

This one’s delicious and a stellar example for the style. I’m really on the fence with the taste rating. It seems spot on, but the coffee in the finish is too obviously actual coffee. As good as it was, it also didn’t have that wholesome glow of perfection. I’d really like to give it a 4.75. (1,160 characters)

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

Incredibly strong coffee and chocolate and (not as much)alcohol aromas.

Pours jet black with a brown, foamy head that sticks to the inside of the glass.

Mouthfeel is sticky, oily, chewy, with strong alcohol warmth.

I taste molasses, coffee, alcohol and chocolate. Brewed with tons of coffee beans.

Also taste espresso, dark fruit.

Such a BIG beer but without an overwhelming alcohol presence. Nice balance.

This beer is a project to drink (albeit a very enjoyable one). Set aside some time, find a comfy chair and settle into this one. Just fantastic! (571 characters)

Photo of Morris729
4.97/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I was quite surprised after peeling away all of the silver foil on the top of the bottle to find only a plain gold cap rather than a cork! Pours a black ruby color with a thick tan head that fades into a creamy lace. Nose is roasted coffee beans along with chocolaty cocoa and some fainter notes of dark fruit. Lots of sweet roasted chocolaty malts are in the tasting along with some espresso and a touch of molasses followed by just the right amount of hop bitterness. The flavors continue to develop in complexity and perfection as the beer warms. The alcohol is noticeable, but extremely well hidden for such a strong brew. Truly magnificent. (645 characters)

Photo of bennetj17
4.4/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Local Dough in Tucson, AZ. The beer arrived at my table with a nice dark tan head of about a half-inch, with solid retention. The color is a deep black although a bit of amber around the edges presents in the light. Rich, chocolatey, mocha aroma present. Very roasty and strong. The taste is has a moderate coffee flavor, yet not as powerful as I expected. There is alot of semi-sweet chocolate flavor in the mix to really balance out the roasted coffee. Because of this it doesn't come across as very bitter for a stout. The alcohol taste creeps out a bit, but considering it's 12% I would say it's well disguised. The mouthfeel was very enjoyable. It's quite thick, but has an ultimate, silky smoothness to it. Perfect and subtle carbonation.

This is a truly great stout, but a bit strong so you must take it a bit slow. I'm anxious to try the bottled version now and compare... (893 characters)

Photo of MSchae1017
4.44/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer was tasted in a snifter glass from the 750mL bottle.

This beer pours jet black with a nice tan-brown head that doesn't hold fantastically well but leaves a little bit of lace as it is dissipating. The smell hits you at first with a sweet roasted and chocolate like aroma but is complimented with a wonderful coffee like aroma. The taste is very much like the smell. Chocolate up front follows by coffee and then you are hit with the bitterness. The mouthfeel is smooth and creamy with a full body up front. The carbonation is smooth at first and then sharp along with some burning from the alchohol. Overall, its a highly drinkable, fantastic stout. (662 characters)

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

Beer poured black. Little head that faded quickly. Smell had a bit of coffee with other aromas I couldn't pin point. Couldn't smell to much alcohol if any though. Taste was quite good. Wasn't in your face of coffee but the aftertaste was. It was quite bitter at the same time (which is a big plus in my book). Chocolate came through quite a bit also. The mouthfeel was smooth and oily. It was very thick and low carbonation. I'm not a big fan of stouts due to the coffee flavor. I could easily drink it though but no more than half a bottle. (541 characters)

Photo of Toddv29424
4.46/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a dark, dark brown color through which almost no light can pass. The head retention is probably the best that I have seen of any beer, ever. It's been poured for about 10 minutes and is still just as big as when it was poured. The smell must be teased out, but the most dominant is alcohol. There is also a bit of burnt malt and hops to it. The taste is wonderful, and probably one of the most balanced beers that I have had ever. Its so well balanced that its almost impossible to discern the different tastes that go into it... all my drinking buddies agree that’s its hard to get a handle on the taste. I would say this is an almost perfect combination of hops and malts, definitely something to be sought out if you've never had it. (753 characters)

Photo of jdoolin
3.6/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 750 mL bottle, poured into tulip glass.

Appearance: Extremely dark brown, with a red tint at the very edges, one finger tan head that didn't last very long.

Aroma: Roasted malt, chocolate, coffee, vanilla and alcohol.

Taste and Mouthfeel: Roasted malts and chocolate up front, but the alcohol kicks in quickly. Too much malt sweetness. Definite, very pleasant coffee in the finish. Moutheel is very creamy and thick. Most excellent. But the alcohol keeps this from being a very drinkable beer.

Notes: It tasted to me like a barleywine mixed with an imperial stout, apparently because of the high alcohol. It makes for a very interesting and delicious beer, but it didn't meet my expectations. At $13 per bottle, I will most likely not be revisiting this. (780 characters)

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

A - Pours a nice black color, nice carbonation, nice brown/tan frothy head, tons of lacing afterwards.

S - Scents of roasted malts, and coffee/chocolate.

T - The taste is kinda sweet, malty, with some nice coffee/chocolate taste, kinda dry finish.

M - Medium, a nice complex brew.

D - Very drinkable for a big brew (12% ABV). Highly recommended. (357 characters)

Photo of Pegasus
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Deep mahogony brown, with a small tan head, which soon collapses to a thin tan collar, with scattered patches of thick, chunky foam.

Aroma: Deep chocolate and coffee aroma, quite pleasing. The bitter chocolate notes seem to linger on and on. A sweet alcohol note appears as the beer warms.

Taste: Bitter chocolate notes dominate from start to finish, at the close of the taste there is a slight herbal hop note and a bit of stale coffee, these seem to linger on forever.

Mouth feel: Smooth, very full, a bit syrupy, very pleasant.

Drinkability/notes: Unwaveringly superb, well worth the effort to obtain. (628 characters)

Photo of scott
3.44/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

2006-My shop just got this is in today, so it's straight off the boat, and I am looking very forward to my introductory taste of this Alesmith SS.

Pours beautifully, with black as pitch body, and 1/4 inch tan head at the rim. Literally georgeous in a tulip. Art. Very nice under light.

Strong coffee upfront, which I love for my stouts. Chocolate syrup not far behind in the nose. Burnt and almost powerful.

Taste is average, at best. I want to love this beer. It's not simple enough to be perfect, not complex enough to make think another glass will drive me to insanity. Think Black Hole meets LH Milk Stout. Drinkable, yes. Outstanding?! 92 points?! Big beers are my thing, and this just doesn't justify the hoopla, nor the $12.99 tag.

Syrupy, with minimal tang. Not very expressive.
Yet, everytime I look at it, I want another pull. I wish it could deliver. (876 characters)

Photo of dbalsock
4.06/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours pitch black with a hint of blue (I love that in stouts) and loads of vanilla head... more head than I've seen in months. It is already brewtiful, but upon drinking I notice the lacing is incredible!

Smell: Flowery hops, carramel and coffee combine with a smokey sensation to make this a pleasant aroma. It all mixes well in the nose, but nothing stands out or makes it fantastic.

Taste: The alcohol mix with molasses, chocolate, grapefruit and other fruit (maybe banana or plum... but I'm having a hard time picking it out). It is complex and very well done, but again, nothing overly striking.

Mouthfeel: Thick, creamy and with a bitter balance, this is a fantastic mouthfeel for a stout. I find the alcoholic aftertaste goes well with the dense body to create a sensational feel. I only wish there was a little more bitterness at the end.

Drinkability: Although this has a high abv, I believe I could go through a few pints of it in a sitting... it's that dangerous. (998 characters)

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

One of the finest there is. For being such a huge beer, it's very drinkable. Being a coffee stout lover, this is what it's all about. Everything in this stout is brought together so nicely. All the flavors compliment each other and work well together.
Pours a nice black color with a slight tan froth for a head. The smell is great. You can spend some time enjoying this beer even before the first taste. The taste is unbelievable for a beer this complex and huge. The coffee, chocolate and flavors are brought together and can be noticed quite easily. It is incredibly smooth on the palate. Honestly, this stout was closer to a five ranking for me. Still an incredible stout, and readily available in my home state. There's got to be a benefit to living in Ohio, right? (770 characters)

Photo of Brian700
4.45/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours dark black with a brown head.

The aroma is of chocolate, coffee, vanilla, roasted malt.

The flavor follows the nose. There is huge amounts of chocolate and coffee, roasted malt, vanilla bean. It has some alcohol warming which in my opinion is needed in a beer like this.

The mouthfeel is full bodied with medium carbonation. It coats the mouth nicely leaving a complexity of flavors to linger in the mouth.

This is a pretty drinkable beer for being a big stout. Definately a must-try. (512 characters)

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

A: Sludge, pure and simple. Pours thick like oil, inky black. The head is fine mesh of toffee colored bubbles a finger thick.

S: Fresh ground coffee, triple chocolate ice cream, anise, molasses and some vanilla bean.

T: Begins like fine melted Belgian chocolate. The head makes the consistency feel like its mixed with real cream. From their a friggin superb balanced roasted coffee and malt profile gently come into play...and I mean gently. This are not harsh tastes. These are not aggresive flavors. These fit perfectly in the moment. The coffee notes curve in the mouth to more bitter chocolate then hints of mascarpone. The alcohol is there but not it warms it makes its way to the sinuses reminding the drinker that this beer is 12%.

M: Thick, chewy, full bodied and creamy. Almost like this beer is made out of half and half.

D: Now that's a beer. Once your mouth gets acclimated...this beer becomes a legendary experience. There is no better stout on the market. (999 characters)

Photo of Estarrio
4.08/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a black chocolate thick mysterious color with a coffee ground colored head. The head gave way to thick, intricate and full lacings.

Big malt aroma with some floral and hoppy suggestions.

Thick, and foamy consistency...this is a big beer!

Sweet malt base flavor mixes with a complex grouping of coffee, roasted malts, caramel, chocolate molasses and hops. The sweetness and warmth suggest the presence of the high alcohol percentage but the alcohol taste is lost amidst the other flavors. I found the sweetness to linger slightly too much in the aftertaste, but aside from that the flavors are excellent.

I'm looking forward to aging a few of these before I review again. (693 characters)

Photo of Golden2wenty1
4.7/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of the gems of the Madison Big Stout session. We were bruised and battered, yet not quite beaten by the time we got to this bad boy.

Pour: BLACK, all black, no light to be seen under an inch of capuccino cream and a bit of spotty lacing.

Nose: fresh roasted coffee (courtesy of Ryan Bros. apparently) caramel/vanilla cream, oatmeal malt and a bite of booze in the finish.

Taste: roasted gourmet coffee bitterness, baking chocolate, dark sweet fruit and grainy oatmeal malt with a vanilla liquor finish.

Feel: on the light side for the style, but silky smooth with velvety/tickling carbonation.

Drinkability/Overall: Hot Damn. This is a tasty ADS. Freshest coffee taste/nose I've witnessed, very refined and balanced with everything else going on. Parallels with the now defunct Heavyweight's Perkuno's Hammer Imp Porter. A top notch big stout. You SoCal mofos are lucky if you haven't figured that out yet. (925 characters)

AleSmith Speedway Stout from AleSmith Brewing Company
97 out of 100 based on 1,483 ratings.