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Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout - Brooklyn Brewery

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Brooklyn Black Chocolate StoutBrooklyn Black Chocolate Stout

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5,999 Ratings

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Ratings: 5,999
Reviews: 2,702
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 10.6%
Wants: 339
Gots: 1,075 | FT: 54
Brewed by:
Brooklyn Brewery visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-04-2000

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,999 | Reviews: 2,702 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of midworken
3.95/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a deep, opaque black body with hints of brown. Head was a dark leather that left a substantial amount of lacing.
Upfront aromas were of sweet chocolate that left with dark chocolate and lightly roasted coffee. Was there some green bell peppers that I smell, too?

Taste very well complimented the nose, while sweetness was in the aroma, the taste was more of bitter/dark chocolate. This is the first time I've really noticed these two (aroma and taste) complimenting each other with such great synergy, and I think it sets a mark of where a beer should stand in these two categories. I was constantly smelling before the taste and smelling after the taste because it was so pleasant (I do this most of this time, but I was purposeful in doing it for this beer). The taste wasn't complex, but it was still very good.
I really thought this is a great beer to have 2 or 3 in one night.

Definitely not a session beer, but it's drinkability was very high and the mouthfeel was just right. Hopefully I will be able to pick some more up next winter.

Photo of chilly460
3.65/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured jet black with a small mocha/tan colored head that quickly dissipates. A bit of a cascading affect is nice. A small ring of lacing is left around the circumference and some sticky lacing is left clinging to the glass.

S - The aroma is full of chocolate with definite notes of coffee, roasted malts and some booze. I also pick on on sweet dark fruits. No hops were picked up.

T = Initial taste is dark powdery chocolate, has a dry cocoa taste. Definitely turns to coffee, and a burnt roast taste. Some toffee malt finish, but the burnt flavor stayed with me. Somewhat one dimensional and borderline on the bitter roast for me.

M - A bit thin and more carbonated then I prefer for a beer of this style.

D - As stated, the bitterness of this brew made it tough to finish.

Photo of KingHefey
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010/2011 winter bottling into a glass.

A: the darkest of browns with half a finger of tan head. Very little lace.

S: burnt sugar and bitter chocolate fill the nose. Coffee beans and roasted malts make a nice presence. You can smells the high alcohol content... in a good way.

T: A very malty dark chocolate start, coffee is next followed by booze and again finishes with the dark chocolate, like a 90% cacao.

M: good carbonation and the creaminess stays on the tongue. A nice bite from the high ABV on the back of the tongue.

D: A fantastic beer to finish a good night. One and done in almost all cases, like a piece of dark chocolate. That being said, I think the brewer did exactly what he set out to do, imitating a square of very dark chocolate in an RIS.

Photo of FosterJM
4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

249th review on BA
Bottle to New Belgium Globe
Winter 10/11

App- A very dark brown with a 1 finger head with a nice tan color to it.

Smell- A bit of a boozier smell to it. Had a nice malty and bitter chocolate scent going.

Taste- Taste followed the nose for me. The booze was very prevalant on this small bottle. The chocolate flavors were very upfront and assertive as well.

*edit* 11/1/11
Taste- Had another batch. A good bit of coffee and espresso with a grainular feel. Doesnt change the 4 just adds a depth of flavor

*edit* 11/1/11
Mouth- A medium body with a medium carb level bordering on low feel. Was a bit creamy with a bitter aftertaste. The coffee flavors add another layer on the feel as well. The bitter adds to the espresso notes.

Drink- A little to boozy for me on the drink. It was a nice beer to end the evening at 10%.

Photo of foogerd
3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pitch black, beautiful coffee colored two inch head.

S- Lots of roast, coffee, malts, a pinch of bitter alcohol.

T- Bittersweet chocolate roasted coffee, boozy. Very dry finish.

M- Smooth, just a tad watery.

D- Very tasty and high abv. Can only drink one bottle at a time.

Photo of rowingbrewer
4.38/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a dark brown to black color with a think off white to tan colored head that goes away pretty fast. the smell is roasty malts up front followed by some sweet dark fruit notes that linger. the beer was cold form the tap and its strange that alcohol presence was more noticeable when the beer was cold, I think this was because the other flavors were muted. as the beer warmed the hints of chocolate came out, along with dark fruit flavors and a little sweetness from the unfermentable sugars. the mouthfeel felt slightly thinner when it was cold, but again as the beer warmed it was fuller and smoother. this is a very drinkable beer especially when served a cellar temperature.

Photo of mcann2pu
3.55/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Poured into a pint glass, had a dark black color, maybe about a half inch of head, medium lacing.

Smell: roasty malt, nice chocolate aroma, slight smell of some sweet dark fruit.

Taste: very sweet malty- taste, some bitter chocolate balances it out.

Mouthfeel: appropriate.

Drinkability: fairly drinkable, a good beer to be sure.

Photo of victory4me
4.24/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Duvel Tulip. 2009 vintage.

Pours dead black with a half to one finger head that lingers nicely. Nice lacing, thin coating of bubbles just hangs on the glass. One of my all time favorite smelling beers. Combination of bitter dark Belgian chocolate and wet paint.

Taste is of bitter chocolate, cocoa, and a mild roastiness reminiscent of coffee. I think I may prefer this beer fresher as the age has allowed it to sweeten up a good deal. Mouthfeel brings a coating of silky sweet chocolate. Drinkability is good.

Brooklyn BCS is one of my favorite RIS' of all time. I do think I like this one a little fresher as I really enjoy the alcohol burn and stronger wet paint aroma when this is less than 6 months old.

Photo of cavedave
3.45/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Winter 10/11 release.

Pours a darkest dark brown, topped by a surprising amount of light brown foam. A swirl leaves oil slicks and small bubbles on the glass. Has a look just shy of motor oil. A small skim stays for the ride.

Nice nose, some deep herbally bitter frames the expected chocolate, some roasty char, hints of coffee, even a hint of tart yeasty cherry in there.

Excellent flavor fronts the sip in this, some cherry chocolate grabs some bitter roast and syrup sweet through the start. As it warms the chocolate becomes very dominant, both sweet/candy-like, and bakers chocolate flavors. It ends with sweet chocolate dominance, cherrybomb with insufficient drier notes, resulting in an overly sweet brew, even for style, that becomes mediciny. Too bad.

Thankfully this isn't even more viscous, but it is unpleasantly resinous as the glass empties, with progressively less fine finish. Nicely low carb. best thing I can say for the feel.

Drinkability is average. Taste is better than some other oversweet offerings in this style, but far less fine than the best. Good enough to enjoy, but not to crave.

Impression: Perhaps the others in cellar will come together in future years, the oversweet diminish. No desire to revisit until then. Not recommended, with Aphrodite, and choc. Yeti, so easily avail.

Photo of jmdrpi
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bottled Winter 10/11, and this year's version is 10.0% abv.

black as night, thin head forms a collar of tan bubbles. aroma is a bit boozy, with definite sweet chocolate notes.

taste starts more sweet malt, then finishes with a bitter roasted chocolate flavor. lower carbonation, fairly thick body.

tasty and drinkable now, but I look forward to what the other bottles can do in the cellar with some age.

Photo of liquidsunshine
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep black in color, as the label would indicate. One finger of tan brown head sticks around and leaves a pleasant lacing. This beer smells like fire, but that is most likely due to the fire and not the beer itself. The dark rich malt and roasty scents balance well with the pleasant burning wood aromas. The flavor is deep and varied, developing well over the palate. In the front comes the malt, followed by the semi sweet chocolate and rounded off with a gentle bitterness from the hops. The mouthfeel is not quite as creamy as I would like for a stout, but the otherwise overall excellent quality of this brew compensates for that. Definitely recommended.

Cheers, Matt

Photo of bwiechmann
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Scored this brew from a great BA. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a snifter.

A well-crafted imperial stout. Pours deep black with a nice mocha head. Nose and taste are of deep, rich chocolate and roasted malts. Noticeable alcohol but no over-top-burn here. Mouthfeel is full with good carbonation. Drinkability is good for the style and the ABV. Well worth seeking out.


Sat on a couple bottles for a year and can't get enough. The heat dissipates, chocolate comes to the forefront even more than when fresh. Any harsh edges are smoothed out and the flavors come together remarkably well. Great beer fresh, stellar beer with a year+ on it.

Photo of marty21
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: 09-10 Version. Pours pitch black with a fingers worth of brown head. Settles to a solid brown cap and leaves lots of lace.

S: Dark roasted malt and tons of dark and milk chocolate. Maybe a little fruit in there as well.
T: Lots of chocolate but there's also a big hit of sweetness right in the middle. Finishes with some more chocolate and dark malt. Can't taste any alcohol. Might be because it's 1 year old.

M: Light carbonation with a full body.

D: This was a great beer. The first sip hits you hard but then you get used to it and it's great. I'd like to try this one fresh to see the difference but if you have a couple definitely try aging one or two.

Photo of jayhawk73
4.08/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a jet black with a thin caramel head that quickly disappears to a thin strip. The smell is that of malt, chocolate and coffee w/ a hint of alcohol. I'd really like the smell to be more present and bold, like the taste- but it's still good. The taste is really nice, with chocolate, coffee and malt and a tad too much alcohol taste for me. It is a 10% beer, but I'd like the alcohol taste to be a little more stealthy. Mouthfeel is great- very smooth and silky. Nice aftertaste, which lingers for a while. This is a strong beer w/ a high ABV, and I wouldn't drink more than a couple in a sitting. Really good beer, but the alcohol presence keeps it from being truly world class. Great beer though, and I pick it up and enjoy it often!

Photo of CwrwAmByth
4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm very much looking forward to this one having heard good stuff about it, so here we go. Upon the pour I am greeted with a torrent of thick, dark brown, foamy liquid, settling in the glass well with a nice tall head, sticking to the sides well.
It smells good, really good. Chocolate is coming through very strongly, as well as malts and alcohol.
The taste hits you rather hard at first with a malty bitterness, but then the chocolate comes through and tones it down a notch, and it goes down smoothly, bitterness coming through again slightly after you swallow, which is a nice touch, providing a crisp, dry finish, and a lovely warm feeling in your belly. If you don't like bitterness too much though, rest assured it dissipates as it warms up.
The mouthfeel is always important on a stout I always feel, as if they are too watery it can sometimes let the taste down a bit. This does a good job, however I personally prefer the really thick, Black Albert types, but comparing the two is unfair, as this is not a small craft brewed beer. This one is very good though.
Overall, this is a top notch drink, outstanding even, considering it is a mass produced stout. A lovely dark, creamy taste with a bitter kick, this one will surely warm you up on a cold night.

Photo of Jadjunk
4.29/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

#87. Brooklyn Brewery's Black Chocolate Stout is a pretty popular RIS. Having never tried it before, I was excited to find a single for a fairly reasonable price at the local bottle shop. This is a limited bottling - Winter 10-11. It took a long time to warm to a decent temperature!

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle to a pint glass at room temp.

(Appearance) Pours a two finger depth milk-chocolate tone head with a frothy, airy appearance. Retention is about average; it's not holding back much but it's also not dying rapidly. It slows slightly when it comes to a surface cover at about 1 finger depth and holds well. Some receding lacing graces the side in unpredictable patterns but unfortunately doesn't stick. The color is 1 shade lighter than pure black with some very slight light getting through the edges. Nonetheless, the beer looks thick and full. There is no visible carbonation on the edges of the glass but I can't see much beyond that. The appearance is decent. 3.5

(Smell) The bitter end is pure creamy chocolate cocoa with a slight touch of nutty tones and quite possibly some earthy hops too. The sweeter end balance comes from some other arrangement of dark malts. It balances the nose out very well. Beyond the balance is a satisfyingly thorough and potent aroma that is truly captivating. There is not much else to say about this complex beer. It smells excellent. 4.5

(Taste) At least as complex as the aroma, the first bit of this beer has a detailed wash of chocolate tones and sweet but heavy flavored dark malts and I can feel the pure cocoa resting on my tongue. If there are any hops included in here, they round themselves out through the entire beer, as there are bitter qualities in every part of the drink. An excellent bitter, charred smoky finish is at least as astounding. I would never have gotten that from the nose. Thoroughly flavorful and complex. My review here doesn't even begin to describe it. 4.5

(Mouthfeel) A bitter but slightly crisp primary sip and a surprisingly brutal dry end. Alcohol is well concealed and the beer is thinner than the average Russian Imperial but doesn't manage to get too bland in any area. This is a full bodied brew for sure. The bitterness and dry finish slows the drinking down significantly and puts an interesting sizzle on the tongue. It does well as long as you don't mind complexity. 4

(Drinkability) The issue with multiple drinks is that this is just a filling stout. The bitterness and dry qualities of this beer are enough to slow you down to enjoy the drink and to let your palate let you know you're full. As such, I couldn't have more than two at a single sitting. The ABV certainly doesn't help, but as long as it's well hidden, as in this one, it's more than welcome. Great complex taste and a pleasing aroma and appearance to boot. Surpassing limited drinks the one I have I know I will savor. This beer is a winner. 4

Verdict: This beer manages to hit many great keys with me and I praise it for it's complexity and flavor (of which the taste is slightly more varied than the aroma). Drinkability is great in small numbers and the appearance could use some very slight fine tuning (in terms of head retention and lacing), but have no doubt, this is a solid stout. A- (4.2%)

Photo of Mancer
3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

The bottle poured out a dark brown body with a three finger high light brown head. The head was a thick foam that eventually dissipated into a thick and sticky lace that smothered the glass. The initial aromas were of dark fruits, roast, malts and a huge helping of prunes. Frankly, the prunes are quite overwhelmingly.The initial flavors were of prunes, bitter unsweetened chocolate and roasted barley. The beer had a full body with light carbonation.

Overall this beer is pretty spot on for the style, however I am not a huge fan of the prunes and after a while they seemed to get a bit tedious. Interesting beer, but not quite in my alley for a stout.

Photo of comfortablynumb1
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Ballast Point pint glass...

A - Pours black with a one finger brown head. Decent head retention and a good amount of lacing...

S - Chocolate, roasted malts, sweet caramel, and a hint of alcohol...

T - Chocolate, dark roasted malts, and hint of caramel. Ends on dark chocolate note with a little heat lingering in the after taste. Just enough to remind you that this is a big brew. Very tasty...

M - Thick and chewy with a moderate amount of carbonation. This is the consistency a good RIS should have...

D - Very solid brew. Something that would definitely be in my rotation if these were readily available in my location. Hoping to age a couple of these for a while, and see what happens...


Photo of SkeeterHawk
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have had this beer for a while and I just reviewed the "Lump of Coal" from Ridgeway, and I seriously need a good beer to wipe the taste out of my mouth. I remember that this beer was really nice, so it would be good to end my beer drinking evening on a high note. Here we go...

Appearance: Pours black as motor oil with a small head of tan bubbles on top after an aggressive pour. The head faded into the beer within about 20 seconds and left a very small ring where the beer meets the glass.

Aroma: I get plenty of dark malts and chocolate with some evident alcohol as spiciness. There is some hops evident here as a floral component to the aroma, but they are supporting the whole malt ensemble.

Taste: The flavor is really malty as well, but the beer is relatively thin on the palate for such a big beer. There is lots of chocolate and other dark malts, and a pretty well defined dark caramel component. The hops are present in the flavor, but are very reserved compared to the malt and alcohol. The alcohol in particular is a big player in this beer by adding spice and mouthfeel in the beginning of the sip and then fading into a lingering warmth on the back of the throat. As the beer warms up, there is a Rauch flavor starting to become more noticeable and contributing a pretty significant amount of oiliness that sticks on the back of the throat. Overall the beer is medium bodied with low carbonation. It is well attenuated, so the body isn't too syrupy as a result.

Opinion: This is a really good beer. I like the balance of malt and hops, and the stout makes a solid showing without ending up too acidic on the palate to linger. That said, it could use a bit more carbonation, and it ends up a bit dry in the finish for my personal preference, but it is still a very easy drinking beer and one that I will definitely try again.

Photo of tbeckett
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - One finger tan head. Totally black. Can't see anything. Head is very calm, looks like it's stickin around.

S - Tons of chocolate, rich roastiness and coffee. Typical RIS. Really nice.

T - Mild booziness. Roastiness is less present. Coffee is pretty strong. Chocolate is strong and tasty. Good to see no actual chocolate added, just alot of great malts.

M - Medium carbonation, really smooth and rich. Silky smooth.

D - Hard to say whether I could have a few of these. I'm burping chocolate. It is delicious but not sessionable obviously. I would never turn one down and I would definately seek it out.

Photo of TheJollyHop
4.27/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2010-2011 Vintage

Nearly black, viscous pour yielding a mousse like light brown head, with scents of bakers chocolate, toffee, tobacco, coffee beans, toasted bread, black licorice, and alcohol. Wow, complex and engaging nose for an imperial stout.

Creamy, rich chocolate, roasted grain, caramel, warming alcohol throughout the taste, dark fruits, and some ashy like char as well. The bitterness barely breaks the sweet malt surface, and one there is promptly overwhelmed. Ends silky smooth with a lingering dark chocolate taste; very close to drinking chocolate. There is no harshness or excessive bitterness in the flavor profile that you might find in West Coast Imperial Stouts.

The mouthfeel is great as there is just enough weight on the tongue, and the carbonation reduces the intensity of this sweet stout. Exhibits a tongue coating characteristic that just begs to be renewed. One of the most well crafted, sweet Imperial Stouts I have had to date.

Photo of mjn5036
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010-2011 Vintage

Poured into White Birch glass. This one pours jet black with a small mocha/tan colored head that quickly dissipates. A pleasant cascading affect is nice. A small ring of lacing is left around the circumference and some sticky lacing is left clinging to the glass. The amount of lacing surprises me considering the abv on this one. A really nice looking beer overall.

The nose on this beer is chock full of chocolate with hints of coffee, roasted malts and alcohol. I also pick on on sweet dark fruits. Not really complex but a good example of its style.

The taste is really quite good. An impressive amount of chocolate on the palate considering they only use chocolate malts to give the flavor. A little on the bitter side, like coffee made with too much of a water:coffee ratio, causing it to be bitter. Alcohol is present in the taste as well. Again, not a lot going on in the flavor, but still enjoyable.

A pleasant amount of carbonation makes this high abv beer quite drinkable. Alcohol bite is noticeable, so while this 12oz bottle is fairly high on drinkability, I don't think I would want more than one glass. A good beer but maybe some time in the cellar will probably do this beer well.

Photo of zdk9
4.45/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is #3 of the Texas Ice Storm '11 Beers (20 degrees and dropping...)

A- Pours black and black upon more black. A full finger of head develops from my aggressive pour. This slowly distills itself into a condensed layer of foam across the top, like swamp water. The lacing is there, in lines sheets and webs.

S- Ah, such an inviting beer. Aromas of chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, dark cherries, cherry cordial, cream chocolate, light espresso grounds, dutch cocoa.

T- Ah, such a delicious beer.The taste is less sweet than the aroma leads me to, more minerals and roast to go along with the chocolate. But still a lot of the same- chocolate, vanilla, espresso (here fading into more intense turkish coffee).

M- Somehow, sweet and dry and at the same time. I guess it's sort of sweet in the front of my mouth and dry by the time the roast and hops hit the back. Not a lot of syrupy, which is ok, but I think I'd prefer some more just so the beer shows off it's power. Certainly the alcohol is well hidden.

D- This is not my first BCS and it will absolutely not be my last. A delicious beer in all respects.

Photo of BranfordBound
3.87/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a tulip.

Pours a deep, near black, brown. One and a half finger tan head forms and falls slowly. Leaves spotty lacing.

Smells of chocolate with fruits dipped in rum and liqueur. A bit boozy.

Has a noticeable taste of dark chocolate, mixed with a roastiness that comes in later. Possible hint of some hops at the end. Maltiness and sweet all around.

Pretty thick on the palette, heavy bodied. Fairly wet, too.

Well for the 10% it's pretty drinkable. However, I find beers like Imperial Stout Trooper fantastic by being able to pack so much flavor with less ABV. Great beer, though.

Photo of inlimbo77
3.95/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Winter 2010 - 2011 vintage. Poured from bottle into New Belguim Brewing glass.

A: Pours a DEEP black color. Thin tan head that fades very quickly. Faint tan line around the outside of glass. Some lacing.

S: I got chocolate, dark malts, and cherries from the nose. Not too overpowering though. I might just have to let it warm up a bit to get more.

T: Complex flavor. I didn't hit me right away, but I got dark, roast malts and chocolates and cherry....just like the nose. Some coffee too, more at the end though.

M: Smooth at the start, but nice coating finish. Not TOO sticky.

D: Overll a good beer for sessioning. I could have had another as the ABV was hidden nicely, but it IS there. 10.5% isn't a joke.

I LIKE this one, but don't LOVE it. I can't fault the brew. It is nice and complex, but I guess I was expecting more after readin reviews. I like the Brooklyn catelog, but I guess my tastes have changed in the last year.

Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout from Brooklyn Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 5,999 ratings.