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AleSmith Speedway Stout - Vietnamese Coffee - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
AleSmith Speedway Stout - Vietnamese CoffeeAleSmith Speedway Stout - Vietnamese Coffee

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

1,005 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,005
Reviews: 76
rAvg: 4.53
pDev: 7.06%
Wants: 453
Gots: 186 | FT: 19
Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

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

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: brew3crew on 11-13-2011

Speedway Stout brewed with Vietnamese Coffee.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,005 | Reviews: 76
Reviews by mothman:
More User Reviews:
Photo of portia99
4.48/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle (bottled 8/5/13) poured into a CBS snifter.

A - Pitch black on the pour with a thick finger plus cap of frothy cappuccino foam with very good staying power. Several minutes pass before it significantly fades and the glass is coated nicely with thick webs of lacing over almost the entire surface.

S - I get a rich coffee aroma up front with a firm complement of berry aroma along with it. Plenty of roast all around. Hints of caramel and molasses and a bit of anise for good measure. Milky chocolate completes the picture.

T - Milk chocolate up front, a touch of burnt/charred malt, lots of roasted malt, and some mild caramel. Coffee comes thru quite well especially as the beer warms a bit - smooth, slightly acidic. There is a thick creaminess to this beer, semi-sweet notes further smooth out this beer quite well. Light hop bitterness, a bit of a green, grassy hop component, but at a low level. Alcohol is well hidden but is not undetectable - light warmth can be felt on the swallow and found on each inhale. Each inhale also brings the berry-like, estery character noticed in the aroma.

M - Medium/full bodied with a lower level, creamy carbonation. Estery, roasty, coffee-centric, chocolately imperial stout - complex describes it. Mild alcohol warmth that lets you know this is a 12% beer, but smooth enough that you completely forget that fact while drinking it.

O - Very, very good imperial stout. Regular Speedway is great by itself. This Vietnamese coffee version takes it up another notch. Not quite the religious experience I've heard others describe this as, but certainly upper echelon material. I think this is the 3rd bottle I have had and happy there is still one left in the cellar - will be happy to revisit this one again at least one more time.

Photo of Franziskaner
4.29/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Black in color and impenetrable to light. There's a fingernail of brown colored foam on top. The aroma is dark roasted barley and bitter coffee. The flavor is initially dark bitter roasted barley and then finishes with the deep coffee note. It honestly finishes slightly sweet. The mouth is creamy and viscous.

Photo of ehammond1
3.91/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On Tap

Night of a Million Zillion Speedways
O'Brien's Pub
San Diego, CA

Dark as night black with brown edges, thin head but the body of this beer is just spectacular. It's thick and oily and leaves the glass absolutely covered in sticky lace. Thick as can be and dark as night. Spectacular.

This is a far sweeter variation than typical Speedway Stout. The roasted coffee elements seem actually subdued in this one; the Vietnamese style coffee pushes through, and it seems a bit syrupy and sticky. The aroma resembles that of a sweet coffee liqueur.

The flavor follows the nose as well. This was certainly the sweetest of the variations and seemed a bit syrupy.

Medium to thick mouthfeel with low carbonation.

A good variation, but a touch too sweet overall for my personal preferences.

Photo of timc100
4.3/5  rDev -5.1%

Rich freshly ground medium roast coffee beans - a lot of lighter berry, toastier roast, bitter dry chocolate, slightly vegetal, sweet milk chocolate and vanilla. Taste is full and sweeter than expected, a lot of mocha, milk chocolate. Drier bitter chocolate finish.

Another great variant but I did prefer the JBM and Kopi to this.

Photo of TheSixthRing
4.34/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap @ Final Gravity in Roseville, CA. 12/13/14

Appearance - Served in an 8 ounce snifter with a broken layer of surface suds, this brew is black with cola brown edging. Streaks of lace down the sides as the brew is consumed and exhibit nice stick.

Smell - Lush chocolate notes along with lesser vanilla and molasses sweetness. Boozy. Hints of roast coffee sit beneath.

Taste - Follows the nose to an extent. Predominant chocolate flavor and a big, boozy bite. Vanilla, brown sugar and molasses notes hit mid-taste, adding to the layered complexity. Coffee roast hits in the finish along with a numbing anise quality.

Mouthfeel - Full-bodied with moderate carbonation. Silky texture with a touch of sticky syrup. Goes down nicely despite the big ABV.

Overall - Yeah, this is nice. Amazing complexity packaged with a smooth, drinkable delivery. I'm not sure if it's better than the standard Speedway, but that's because it's amazing too. Well recommended.

Photo of Sammy
3.83/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

musty coffee all right overall

Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.47/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Was lucky enough to snag a grumbler of this on my last trip to San Diego. 32oz. growler into a Brooklyn Brewery snifter. Shared with schen9303.

Pours a ring of dark, rich mocha head. A swirl gives a luxuriously thick head that dissipates quickly. Nice surprise given this was a week-old-shipped-across-the-country growler. Beer is rich, thick, and pitch black. Lacing is spotty and stringy with average stick. Thin, oily legs. A solid looking beer for the style and serving vessel.

Nose is chocolate, cocoa, and lactose. A slight bit of roasty bitterness complemented nicely by fudge and molasses sweetness. Overtones of light booziness. Moderately aromatic and nice balance.

Opens mocha, dark chocolate, lactose and coffee. Some almond and nuttiness towards the middle with more lactose sweetness. Molasses, fudge and coffee at the end. Finishes slight roast, cocoa, and more coffee. Aftertaste of chocolate, roasted malt sweet and tartness and fudge. Very, very nice.

Full bodied with low carbonation. Thick and oily in the mouth and goes down smooth and silky. Finishes messy with a sticky, lingering aftertaste. Leaves your lips sweet and sticky. Nearly perfect. The overall lack of carbonation actually helps the feel a good deal.

I haven't had any of the other non-bottled Speedway variations but if they're all like this, I'm officially hooked. This beer has great complexity and an incredible feel. A real sipper but not boozy at the same time. If you get a chance to try this, grab it!

Photo of Alieniloquium
4.42/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

32 oz. growler poured into a snifter. Reviewed from notes.

Appearance - Inky black. Good dark khaki head. Settles to a collar.

Smell - Intense coffee. Initially seems to be the same a regular Speedway, but it has a lighter almost fruity characteristic to the coffee.

Taste - The coffee has a much lighter and intense flavor than the other variants that I've had. This one is less earthy and more fruity. Roasty malts and bitterness at the end. Light, but present, caramel malt flavor.

Mouthfeel - Roasty and bitter. Well carbonated. Medium -heavy body. As heavy as it should be.

Overall - The coffee is interesting and a surprisingly unique flavor. I figured this would taste the same as regular Speedway. The perceived delicacy of the coffee flavor means the depth of the coffee and malt flavor suffers a skosh, but I enjoy it just as much as regular Speedway.

Photo of Treyliff
4.57/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Opened December-2013 at Williamjbauer's tasting, poured into a snifter

A- pours pitch black with a small fizzy light tan head that has good retention as the head remains bubbly long after the pour

S- fresh roasted coffee aroma up front, followed by ripe banana and melted milk chocolate. There's a slightly smoky charcoal character, finishing with some fruity notes

T- fresh coffee up front, perhaps the freshest coffee flavor that I've experienced form a beer and very coffee-forward. Beyond the coffee, some chocolate notes begin to kick in followed by some slightly smoky notes. More coffee on the finish that continues to sit fresh on the palate

M- medium body with low carbonation leads to a slick mouthfeel and finish

O- one of the best coffee flavors I've ever had from a stout, the freshness of the flavor is just ridiculous and meshes very well with the chocolate flavors, alcohol is also hidden very well

Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a nice large foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma consists of deep roasted barley malt with notes of dry coffee with some hazelnut nectar which rounds off some of the rough edges. Taste is a mix between some deep dry roasted malt notes with dry coffee notes and some hazelnut notes which helps rounds off the flavours. Body is quite full with good carbonation and nice creamy body and no apparent alcohol. I liked this version better than the Koppi version.

Photo of jegross2
4.75/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Reviewing the Vietnamese Coffee Speedway Stout from AleSmith Brewing Company out of San Diego, California.

Score: 97

Bottled 08/05/13. Served in a Surly Darkness chalice and enjoyed on 01/23/13.

Appearance: Jet black in color. Pours two fingers of khaki head that recede to thin, coating layer and thick ring around the glass. Great lacing and retention. This is a beautiful looking stout. 5/5

Smell: Milk chocolate, high percentage cacao dark chocolate, vanilla, cake batter, molasses, raisins and dried dark fruits. There are undertones of coffee, but they are much subtler than you would expect from a coffee stout. A little cinnamon comes across too. The doughy cake, vanilla and cacao notes are surprisingly prominent relative to the coffee character -- I was expecting roast and a big blast of coffee based on the last time I had this beer -- but the heavy dose of cacao and vanilla is welcome surprise. Everything here is in perfect balance, and the dark fruit character mixes in seamlessly unlike regular Speedway Stout. This nose is absolutely incredible. 5/5

Taste: There's the coffee I was expecting! Upfront hits a big blast of smooth, bitter roast and chocolatey coffee flavor that lingers long. Delightfully creamy, not that acidic. There's a big dark fruit character on the back half that's not nearly as neatly integrated as it was in the nose at first. Notes of bakers chocolate, oak and molasses too. The dark fruit mellows out and blends in to the rest of the beer much better as the brew warms up. In fact, by room temp, all the flavors blend wonderfully and more chocolate notes come through. No booziness; I would never guess that this is 12% ABV. 4.5/5

Mouthfeel: Not quite full bodied, but nicely viscous. Carbonation level is spot on. Very creamy mouthfeel with a dry finish. Has some sweetness towards the finish, which counterbalances the upfront bitterness nicely. Can't ask for much more in the mouthfeel department than this in a stout. 5/5

Overall: A really excellent stout from Alesmith that is better than any of their barrel aged projects, and a major step up from the base beer, in my opinion. While not quite up to the level of the Kopi Luwak variant, this twist on Speedway Stout is excellent in its own way. The bitterness here is quite appetizing, and the dark fruit, molasses and chocolate mix well balancing the sweet and bitter characters. My recommendation is that you drink this one on the warmer side. Proceed with caution, however, as this beer is dangerously dome-able.

Cost: $18 for a 750 ml bottle.

Photo of deford
4.75/5  rDev +4.9%

Shared a bottle with my son, poured into Snifters. Oh My God! This is amazing...

A- Pour is a thick, viscous black, with a finger or so of frothy head that lasts about two minutes. It leaves behind a nice lacing.

S- Wow! The cocoa and coffee coming off this is fantastic! Just perfectly balanced and oh so pleasing.

T- I am taken back to childhood when I stole a piece of my moms baking cocoa thinking it would be sweet chocolate, boy was I wrong. Thats exactly what I get here (in the best way ever!). The darkest most bitter cocoa joined by a slightly sweet coffee. As it warms there's just a hint of alcohol and some dark fruit adding just a touch to the sweetness while never actually becoming sweet. I know that sounds strange but I couldn't describe it as sweet, even though there's a bit of that going on.

M- Medium to full. Slight carbonation that feels velvety smooth. Leaves a wonderfully enjoyable bitter cocoa on the finish.

O- Just fantastic. I can't really think of anything I'd like to see that's not already here. May have even picked up a bit of vanilla somewhere. This makes me want to get some Vietnamese coffee! So glad I have another bottle in the cellar...

Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.92/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Bottle shared by Curran tonight. Sweet baby jesus, this was amazing.

Pours a dark and inky black, with a small mocha-colored head, and a small amount of lacing. Looks uber inviting.

Smells just insane. Creamy, iced coffee, hazelnut, vanilla, chocolate and roasted malt. So amplified, and strong smelling.

I don't really even drink coffee on it's own, but this makes me want to try Vietnamese coffee. The coffee flavor on this one is undoubtedly the strongest, bold, and warmest coffee flavor I've ever gotten out of a beer. It's got an almost condensed milk flavor, with vanilla cream, hazelnut, walnut, chocolate, big roasted malt flavor, lactose. The coffee is nutty, creamy, milky, freshly roasted, and slightly bitter, and just unbelievably rich and complex. Get the picture? Amazing.

This has an amazing mouthfeel, rich, with a deadly amount of creaminess and silkiness, almost feels like velvet melting in my mouth. It's sweet, but not cloyingly so, with a lower level of carbonation. It's drinkable and crushable, but you don't really want to, because you never want the glass to end.

This is honestly one of the best stouts I've ever had. I'm speechless, this is the definition of next level.

Photo of RaulMondesi
4.29/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Cask at Blue Palms' 5th Anniversary in Hollywood, CA.

Raul was picturing rice fields; Raul was picturing himself getting lost in the beauty of Vietnam... Speedway Vietnam Coffee Stout though...not so much. Don't get Raul wrong, this is a great beer; but subtle, it's subtle like Miley Cyrus' brainwaves. Not much on the coffee here. Very good, but not the "yep!" status that Raul was hoping for.

Photo of rlee1390
4.39/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

A-Black in the glass, one finger head that is brown and tries to leaves some lacing.

S-Coffee, chocolate, roasted malt and a tad vanilla.

T-Woah. Lots of coffee, yummy coffee. Rather roasty some chocolate, tad bit of vanilla. Really good balance and mild bitterness.

M-Medium to heavy in body, well carbonated and a tad creamy as well.

O-Amazing how just changing the coffee can change the beer. This is a clear step up from the regular Speedway.

Photo of RyanK252
4.75/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

On draft at City Beer Store in San Francisco

A: Pours dark as night with a nice mocha head, laces nicely.

S: Dark chocolate and coffee heaven, some spice notes maybe cinnamon.

T: Delicious chocolate and coffee, a little vanilla, alcohol comes out a little as it warms but overall well hidden, a little cinnamon cayenne pepper spice note on the finish

M: Heavier body but velvety smooth, low carbonation

O: Outstanding! Very happy to have had the chance to try this one.

Photo of DarthKostrizer
3.76/5  rDev -17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at O'Briens night of a million zillion speedways

Look: Pours midnight black and totally opaque with 1/8 tan head and good reception for a small pour

Smell: Very sweet and gourmet coffee notes that take over the whole beer

Taste: Very sweet and very bitter coffee notes that are backed up by copious amounts of chocolate

Mouthfeel: Full body and low carbonation

Overall: Not one of my favorites of the night. Overly sweet and a bit off putting on the taste

Photo of DavoleBomb
4.57/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter from a 32 oz. growler. Huge thanks to anotherjoe for this.

4.5 A: Black color. Two fingers of mainly cream, minorly frothy tan head. Retention is pretty good given the ABV and plenty of lacing is left, which is impressive given the coffee.

5.0 S: This smells amazing. I can't really remember what the regular Speedway smells like at the moment, but I'm just going to say that this is different and better. The coffee is sweeter and more chocolatety. Supple roast, caramel, light molasses, chocolate, sweet neutral maltiness. Big pithy coconut, vanilla, and a lactose-like creaminess.

4.5 T: Tastes mainly like the nose, but isn't quite as powerful and impressive. Chocolate, roastiness, neutral maltiness, caramel, molasses, coconut, lactose, coconut, vanilla. Coffee is tangy, super smooth, chocolatety, and wonderfully roasty. Quite tasty.

4.0 M: Heavier medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Super smooth and goes down incredibly easy. My only complaint is that it's not quite creamy enough. Still good here though.

4.5 D: Definitely a winner. I love the original Speedway, but wasn't impressed with the barrel aged version, but now I'm all about trying variants of this again.

Photo of Desp59
3/5  rDev -33.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Just ok. BA version was better.

Photo of bnelson997
4.75/5  rDev +4.9%

Hard to say what hasn't already been said. This has gotta be one of the best varietals of Speedway. They only thing that makes this one better is throwing it into a barrel!

Photo of Benish
4.49/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into snifter glass. Bottled 08/2013.

Appearance: not quite black as night, more like the color of black coffee. A nice brownish head built up which dissipated quickly to a shiny smooth surface like motor oil.

Smell: picked up some dark fruit, coffee of course, some chocolate, alcohol as it warms up, as well as some leather.

Taste: interestingly it almost tasted as if this was barrel-aged, I can pick up the notes of bourbon. The coffee is strong and intense, just a bit astringent but not in a bad way. There is the sweetness coming from the beer but than the bitterness from the coffee shines through. This is a rich one with the flavors becoming more in depth as it warms up. As opposed to other coffee stouts, this is appropriate for sipping like cognac. With all these rich flavors, it almost like umami.

Mouthfeel: its heavy bodied and as it warms up there is a slight burn at the back of the mouth. It also starts to become creamier at room temp.

Overall: outstanding beer! Hard to believe this is not barrel-aged, but thats just me thinking. The flavors are so rich and it's one of those beers that great for sharing as opposed to other coffee imperial stouts.

Photo of PicoPapa
4.48/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to Orthodoxkardia for this one.

32oz mini growler pours a pitch color with an inch of frothy medium brown head. Lots of spotty lacing. This one smells great. The aroma is a nice mix of espresso, vanilla, caramel, and chocolate syrup. The taste is a mix of espresso and chocolate syrup. Roasted malts, earth, vanilla and caramel. More coffee flavors towards the finish mixed in with chocolate syrup. Very noticeable alcohol presence. Slick mouthfeel with a good amount of carbonation. This beer made the long trip to CT no problem and I am very grateful for that. Overall, an amazing beer that improves on an already great one.

Photo of Luk13
4.51/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle thanks to tom10101. Pitch black with creamy tan head. Intensely aromatic nose with brown chocolate and coffee (light vegetal) along with spices (cinnamon, chile). Taste is rich and mellow chocolate with a cinnamon twist. Palate is awesome: rich and fluffy. Probably my favorite aromatic stout.

Photo of Thorpe429
4.47/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks, Moll. Nose is quite nice with beautiful coffee an then te flavor explodes. Nice light roast and just a touch of fruit. Dry. Great. Regular Speedway Stout is really good, but this beer's coffee character was simply unreal. It's hard to compare to anything I've had before. Maybe Zhukov's Final Push.

Photo of jlindros
4.5/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Don't remember who shared this with me. Sampled at one of the big whale tastings hosted at my place. Initially didn't post the review as I thought it was the same beer I had before, but after having it, and thinking about it and reviewing notes, I'm pretty sure the beer I had before was the Brewers Reserve Speedway with Vietnamese coffee.

Dark thick creamy rich 1 finger head fades slowly with nice lacing, pitch black beer, nice legs on the sides, etc.

Nose brings typical Speedway malts, cocoa, some roast, little creamy like characters with a little milk chocolate, mild toasted notes and chocolate, etc. Then some nice coffee, not a ton of coffee, but nice freshly roasty coffee, earthy, nutty, fresh roast, etc, not nearly like the other Vietnamese Speedway, but still nice.

Taste is similar to the nose, fresh toasted and roasted coffee right out, again that earthy nutty dusty woody coffee flavors, freshly roasted beans and fresh grinds, like coffee was just steeped in the beer. Then again that Speedway base, dark malts, toasty, roasted malts, creamy flavors with a milk chocolate and cocoa, little caramel, nice vanilla, etc. Finish is sticky and sweet, mild booze warmth which is hidden fairly well, little more roast and toasted notes, plenty more coffee lingering too.

Mouth is still very heavy bod, thick, rich, velvety and creamy, sticks all around the mouth, nice carb.

Overall quite nice, a step up from the base speedway with so much great coffee, the Vietnamese coffee is very unique and quite tasty, but pales in comparison to the awesomeness of the Brewers Reserve version we had before.

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AleSmith Speedway Stout - Vietnamese Coffee from AleSmith Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 1,005 ratings.