AleSmith Speedway Stout - Vietnamese Coffee - AleSmith Brewing Company

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AleSmith Speedway Stout - Vietnamese CoffeeAleSmith Speedway Stout - Vietnamese Coffee

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BA SCORE
96
world-class

74 Reviews
THE BROS
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Reviews: 74
Hads: 1,032
rAvg: 4.42
pDev: 9.05%
Wants: 480
Gots: 191 | FT: 20
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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 74 | Hads: 1,032
Photo of Treyliff
4.57/5  rDev +3.4%
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 (919 characters)

Photo of PicoPapa
4.48/5  rDev +1.4%
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. (639 characters)

Photo of BMMillsy
4.42/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Big bottle from trade dated 8/5/13. Huge thanks for a big want of mine. Pours pitch black with a big brown creamy head on top. Aroma of roasted grains, sweet dark fruits, some chocolate and fudge, and nearly no coffee on the nose. Flavor is big fudgy chocolate and some lightly spicy coffee, some vanilla and smooth espresso, roasty and lots of milk chocolate. This is extremely creamy bodied with low medium carbonation. I have not had Vietnamese coffee before, but this blend comes off with more smooth and creamy sweet sugars--almost like a lactose addition, though I know it has been confirmed there is not lactose added here--and vanilla than big bold spicy coffee notes. I assume this is due to the different coffee variant. I don't know if maybe the coffee faded already in the nose and elsewhere, but altogether a beautifully smooth stout that I find different from the other variants I have had. Everything about this is extremely well done, I just wish there were more to the aroma. (992 characters)

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

A-dark brown black color with a nice tan head and decent lacing

S-rich coffee, chocolate, dark malts, earthy, light vanilla, molasses

T-dark roasted malt, dark chocolate, coffee, vanilla, molasses, dark fruit, little earthy, mild bitter finish

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, smooth and rich, alcohol well-integrated in spite of ABV

O-a great stout made even better by the addition of coffee, wish this was more readily available (442 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -9.5%
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. (520 characters)

Photo of jbaker67
4.54/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It pours near black with a small tan head. The nose is rich-roasted coffee, earth, creaminess, toast, dark and milk chocolate. The taste is rich-roast, coffee, light peppery spice, cocoa, good deal of bitterness, earth, toast, light lactose, some acidity and alcohol warmth. Full body, moderate carbonation and slightly stick mouth-feel. Smooth and tasty. (355 characters)

Photo of zhanson88
4.34/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottled August 2013.

Appearance: Pours a viscous looking black color,with a solid 3/4" tan head, which has good retention and lacing. Nice start.

Smell: Smells of dank coffee, semi sweet dark chocolate, and vanilla. Really not quite as much dank coffee on the nose as I had anticipated. More sweetness than I was expecting.

Taste: Like the smell, coffee bitterness up front, with more prevalent dark chocolate and vanilla sweetness. Warming alcohol bite on the end.

Mouthfeel/Overall: Mouthfeel is full, with a great level of fine carbonation. Excellent. It drinks right up to its ABV. Overall a nice stout. Was kind of expecting the coffee to be a bit danker and in my face, with a touch less sweetness. As it was though, still very nice and an improvement over the base beer. (784 characters)

Photo of jegross2
4.75/5  rDev +7.5%
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. (2,555 characters)

Photo of orangesol
4.47/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to DocJ007 for sharing this one with us last night at our monthly tasting.

A - Pours jet black with a nice one finger tall tan head, quickly dissipating down to a light film, leaving small streaks of lace down the sides of the glass.

S - Smells of intense fresh brewed coffee, bit of bakers chocolate, dash of vanilla extract, molasses, dark fruits, plenty of dark roast and some light booze. The coffee is intense and yet it doesn't completely overshadow the supporting aromas.

T - Starts off with with a huge blast of fresh brewed vietnamese coffee that never really fades away. Hints of vanilla, molasses, bakers chocolate, dark fruits and plenty of dark roast help round it all out. Booze grows as it warms up but never really gets in the way of the flavors. Finish is pretty roasty with a bit of sweetness, lingering long after the finish.

M - Heavy body with moderate carbonation. Heavy, roasty feel from start to finish. Pretty easy to consume all things considered.

O - I have wanted to try this one for a long time and I am really glad it lived up to my expectations. The coffee was stronger than the Kopi version which was a pleasant surprise, yet it was still pretty easy to consume. After mixing some of this with the BA speedway we drank right after it it's safe to say that I would love to see a BA version of this. (1,355 characters)

Photo of De_Nada_Brewing
4.81/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Finally cracked open a bottle I had been saving for awhile now.

Some of the coffee flavored had faded but I was still able to pick it up.

The smell is amazing and I wish this was more available.

Overall I was very pleased with this beer! Tastes just like a Viet Coffee! (273 characters)

Photo of maximum12
4.08/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Hail to my favorite new trader, rawfish, for this bottle. It will be the fourth I've had from his box & if the pattern holds, it will be a minimum of very good. Big, dark 750ML bottle split with my wife.

Pour is Banner of Mordor black with only a flash of head, then, still. My wife makes a blasphemous (but positive) exclamation at the smell: yes, she's a coffee junkie. I get less coffee than I expect (I am not an addict, or even a drinker of, coffee, so that's good) & chocolate so milky it's turning off-white. Bit of creamer.

Speedway Stout - Vietnamese Coffee should have been sampled right beside a regular bottle: because to me, coffee is coffee, since I know no better. This is my kind of coffee: more creamer than bean. First impression is of sweet cream & malts, & only then does a mild bitterness intrude (pleasantly) along with a roast more decadent than Caligula. No alcohol in my glass. In the shadows are a faint nutty twist, vanilla, chocolate. It all comes together with a thunderclap of smooth that's so silky it belongs on a Victoria's Secret model. Preferably Jill Goodacre. Wait, sorry, my age is showing. I'm already more than halfway through my portion of the bottle.

Smooth. Like, wow, smooth. I arrived here expecting a coffee bomb & instead was greeted by a coffee seduction. Smooth, delicious, rich, this is one excellent beer. (1,362 characters)

Photo of Benish
4.49/5  rDev +1.6%
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. (1,186 characters)

Photo of rlee1390
4.39/5  rDev -0.7%
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. (450 characters)

Photo of kevanb
4.37/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle, generously shared by Colin, Mike and Chris, once again thanks guys! Poured into a 10oz snifter, reviewed from iPhone notes.

The beer pours a deep jet black color, super opaque, touches of cola brown when held to the light, with a thick, firm caramel head that has poor retention and leaves only a spot or two of lace behind. The aroma is of heavy coffee, one of the more beautiful beans at that, lightly roasted, loads of fruit character with nice toasted cocoa, vanilla and rich malted grain and just a trace of hot alcohol. The coffee is on full display here and it really comes across on the tongue, just a subtle roast with sweeter fruit and cocoa that is also lightly bitter, vanilla is really nice with a bit of creaminess and a lot of sweet, hearty rich grain. Alcohol is well hidden on the tongue, the beer is certainly sweet, but the earthiness of the coffee helps cut that down nicely. The bean is showcased so well against the backdrop of a big stout. The mouthfeel is fantastic, rich, silky and coats the mouth superbly well. The finish is super creamy and soft with a light warming sensation.

Verdict: A great coffee stout and a really great adaptation on the base stout. The fruitiness of the bean, along with some earthy qualities really shine and the subtle roast is wonderful. I still struggle with how sweet this beer is, but it's a joy to drink in smaller quantities. (1,403 characters)

Photo of Luk13
4.51/5  rDev +2%
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. (300 characters)

Photo of Duff27
4.28/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Thick Light mocha head on a dark brown/black body that sticks around for awhile. Looks great. A swirl leaves a bunch of clump lacing.

Dry robust coffee smell.

Roasty, robust..."nutty", almost woody. Hard to believe this is 12%abv.

OMG. One of the best mouthfeel my mouth has ever felt. Sooo luscious, creamy, frothy, smooth. Perfectly carbed, perfect overall.

Simply put, the smell and taste are good but the mouthfeel is the real winner of the show. So creamy and smooth. Thanks for sending it this way kojevergas! (519 characters)

Photo of dar482
4.78/5  rDev +8.1%

The beer reminds me of what a coffee stout should or if Founders Breakfast Stout was actually deserving of its rating.

The beer offers more than the base beer with a huge amount of coffee and almost a creamy flavor. Lots of chocolate balances out the bitterness of the coffee. A full mouthfeel, but the beer is still quite drinkable. The beer drinks under 10%.

One of the best non-barrel coffee stouts. (404 characters)

Photo of corby112
4.54/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Draft at AleSmith.

Pitch black and opaque with a one finger beige head that quickly settles into a thick, lasting ring.  Good retention considering the style and ABV with streaks of soapy lacing left behind.

Absolutely ridiculous nose on this beer.  Tons of perfectly roasted gourmet coffee along with lactose cream, condensed milk and sweet fudge-y chocolate malt.  Deeply roasted with tons of coffee character but never approaches smelling burnt or acrid.  Holy shit this beer smells good!  

Medium bodied with slight viscosity and really nice roasted black coffee/espresso bean flavor countered by sweet lactose creaminess and dessert like chocolate malt.  Burnt toast and robust gourmet coffee flavor with oatmeal and bittersweet dark chocolate. That lactose presence is really, really nice and is very reminiscent of the condensed milk on the bottom of a cup of Vietnamese coffee.  Well balanced but still roasty as hell.  Delicious beer that perfectly captures the elements of Vietnamese coffee without taking away the stout characteristics of the base beer.  Highly recommended! (1,099 characters)

Photo of jeff1973
4.44/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a Maudite tulip. Bottled on 8/5/13, so about a month old.

A - Pitch black, not even a ruby hue on the edge (like a good stout should be). Mocha head leaves good lacing.

S - Milk chocolate, a very dark, acidic coffee scent, dried cherries.

T - I read that they added lactose to it to mimic the sweetened condensed milk in normal vietnamese coffee. I can definitely taste it. Blends nicely with the dark, strong coffee, and dark chocolate and dried cherry flavors. Very rich, not much alcohol burn.

M - Rich, full, and creamy. Low carbonation.

O - Awesome beer. Had at the tasting room when I picked up my bottles and instantly regretted not by buying as much as I could have. (711 characters)

Photo of Dreadnaught33
4.33/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A very interesting and different beer to the 'regular' speedway stout. You can tell the coffee is stronger and more bitter.

The look is a nice dark brown to black with some excellent lacing and a decent frothy ring of tan-off white head.

The smell is nice but thin in its complexity, plenty of bitter coffee grinds along with some vanilla bean and cocoa beans to round it out. The smell is a bit astringent which departs from the nice aromas. The taste follows suit in many ways, but it is filled in by a hefty malt bill and some deeper sweet and savory flavors that make the coffee tastes richer. A very complex palate that seems to open up as it warms and deepens with each taste.

The feel is a nice medium feel with little burn. It goes over smoothly, and caps off a very nice brew overall. (798 characters)

Photo of kawilliams81
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a snifter.

Pours pours black with a huge 3" dark cola head. A lot of small trails and bubbles of lacing cover the glass.

Huge coffee, big dark chocolate, light vanilla and mint.

Nice big rich coffee, vanilla, dark chocolate.

Great coffee stout! Very smooth, huge rich coffee flavor with nice dark chocolate as well. (351 characters)

Photo of Axnjxn
4.61/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

750ml wax bottle into a chalice.

Pours a pitch black with a slight beige head. The smell is amazing...its like a blend of vanilla and coffee that seemingly makes a whole new aroma i've never had the pleasure of enjoying before now. The taste is also, thankfully, just as it smells. Real creamy and that vanillay/coffee/chocolate blend just works wonders on my palate. Full bodied but the alcohol is completely hidden. real treat to drink.

Overall possibly my new favorite imperial stout that i've tried. I really, really dug the blend of flavors on this one.

Amazing, world class, make every effort to try this beer. (620 characters)

Photo of RaulMondesi
4.29/5  rDev -2.9%
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. (399 characters)

Photo of Stevedore
4.44/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Malt House in Madison, Wisconsin to celebrate AleSmith's Wisconsin launch. Served in snifters today, 8/7/2013.

This beer looks amazing. I say that big stouts look thick and black, but this is especially so. It is deep abyssal black with a nice fluffy mocha head that was still there a half hour later. The lacing is ridiculous on this beer, and as the beer goes down, the glass is pretty much stained brown by the oily traces. It looks like I'm drinking carbonated black coffee!

The smell is mostly an intense bitter black coffee flavour with a ton of roasty malt sweetness. Its not incredibly different from Speedway in this regard although I definitely get a bit more of the sweetness. Its as if the coffee is less intense but more complex.

Now the taste is where it separates itself from the regular Speedway. Chocolates, cocoa, lactose, hints of marshmallows and dark fruit. Heavy on the chocolate and lactose. It is incredibly sweet yet balanced out very well by an intense coffee flavour that isn't too bitter yet the flavour is still incredibly strong. That's the major difference between this one and other coffee stouts- you still taste intense coffee flavours but without that bitterness.

The mouthfeel is great as always. Thick bodied, viscous, creamy and smooth. Very enjoyable to drink and there is absolutely no hint of that 12% ABV even as it gets to room temperature. That aftertaste is that bitter yet mellow sweet coffee flavour accompanied by the roasty malts and chocolate.

Regular Speedway is incredibly delicious yet this one is a nice twist on it. I would absolutely go out of my way to drink this one again. This will probably end up being one of the best coffee stouts I've had and this includes a lot of barrel-aged coffee stouts out there. (1,781 characters)

Photo of Alieniloquium
4.42/5  rDev 0%
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. (867 characters)

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AleSmith Speedway Stout - Vietnamese Coffee from AleSmith Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 74 ratings.