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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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6,129 Ratings

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Ratings: 6,129
Reviews: 2,729
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 10.6%
Wants: 349
Gots: 1,162 | FT: 58
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: 6,129 | Reviews: 2,729
Photo of beerking1
4.55/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours heavy, thick, and deep black with garnet notes and a very dark brown head of dense moose. Completely opaque, this is the black hole of beers. Aroma is strong dark, even burnt malt, with notes of the alcohol and some dark fruits (dates, figs, currants). Hintsof anise come through in the aroma as well. Flavor is more dark (burnt) malt, bitter chocolate, and some very slight sherry notes. Finish is pleasantly dry and dark, with subtle reminders of the alcohol. Body is thick and oily, but very smooth.

Photo of blakesell
2.86/5  rDev -31.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Winter 05-06 bottle right after they ramped up the alcohol, year old 12oz bottle poured into a Belgian tulip.

Appearance- Solid black with a thin head of tan foam. Lacing is like glue and leaves legs on the sides of the glass.

Smell- Chocolate and espresso with much roasty malts and some hop bitterness. A bit of lactose creaminess in the nose, but not too much. The bulk majority is the perception of milk chocolate.

Taste- Wow, everything that was previously great about this beer is now gone. The big chocolate flavour is now just a lingering memory. Alcohol burn and hop bitterness is most of what is left. The smooth creaminess is gone and now we have a very difficult to drink stout in our glass.

Mouthfeel- Sticky and cloying. Creaminess that should be there is hardly there at all. Bittering hops seem to have replaced this and make this much less of an enjoyable brew.

Drinkability- Nearly a drain pour. For some reason when they ramped up the alcohol they decided not to taste test the batch and this beer has suffered. This year's batch (06-07) is much better still having the big alcohol but retaining it's previous chocolate character.

Photo of DrainBamage
4.13/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a syrupy black color with a lace of head. Smell is very malty with lots of chocolate aroma. The taste is full of alcohol and quite bitter. I'm kinda disappointed with the taste though, because the label says chocolate and the smell of full of chocolate, so naturally you'd think the taste would lots of chocolate, not here though. You can only taste a little chocolate here. Mouthfeel burns a little, as it should with such high alcohol. Don't get me wrong this is one fine Russian Imperial Stout, but if you're hoping for chocolate flavor you might be disappointed.

Photo of 86sportster883
4.15/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout emerges from the bottle thick, motor oil black, and with a thin brown head that quickly recedes to a ring of fine bubbles. The smell is rich, roasty and enticing while the flavor is complex and rewarding. This is a very big beer and the 10% plus abv, although ever present, is well balanced by the chocolate & burnt malt flavors and the dry finish. This beer seemed medium bodied with a prickly fine carbonation that made the beer seem lighter. A nice after dinner sipping beer.

Photo of irishkyle21
4.47/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The bottle says winter 07/08 so its rather fresh. It pours with a nice tanned head, good retention as well as lacing. Has a deep black color.

Smells of roasted malts, molasses, chocolates, burnt coffee (in a good way if thats possible) and some fruits.

The taste has lots of roasted malt, chocolate and coffee. Another great winter brew and another great beer from Brooklyn.

Photo of alexgash
4.11/5  rDev -1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served at cellar temp. Deep, dark, almost black body with a large, thick, dense, creamy, milk chocolate brown head. Great lacing. Roasted barley, licorice, herbal-medicinal alcohol, dark sweet sugary fruits, and coffee on the nose. Roasted coffee bitterness at first, and then rich, rummy-sweet fruits flanked by herbal, warming alcohol notes. Dark, bitter chocolate settles in and the coffee and chocolate bitterness increase in the warming, numbing finish. Full-bodied with a velvety smooth feel. Will have to age a few to see if the bitterness settles down some.

Photo of DrinkinBuddy
4.11/5  rDev -1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a complete 3000 mile motor oil black. Smell is that of roasted malts, chocolate and alcohol. Taste is mainly of bitter chocolate mixed with a combination of roasted malts. A very strong alcohol taste is present. I wish they would have masked the alcohol a little better. Maybe next year. Mouthfeel is very full and thick. Very pleasing for a stout. Drinkability isn't the best because of the very apparent alcohol presence. A pretty good stout, and I'd try it again.

Photo of maddogruss
3.95/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a 12 ounce bottle into a glass mug.

A: Pours a thick, black body with a small, half inch head with ok retention. Slows to a small lacing along the top later on with some lacing along the sides of the glass, but not too much.

S: A nice, roasted smell with chocolate undertones. Reminded me of a chocolate liqueur chocolate ball.

T: A nice, roasted chocolate taste with a bitter, dark chocolate aftertaste. Alcohol was not too evident in the taste.

M: A thick, velvety mouthfeel. Almost like melted chocolate or chocolate syrup.

D: Ok drinkability. A little too thick to drink a lot of these in quick succession. A very good session beer.

Photo of enki
3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured literally pitch black into a pint glass with a thick brown head; almost like espresso crema, which dissipated to a light brown ring around the glass, and some lacing.

Smelled like chocolate, malt, alcohol, and a bit of coffee on the pour. Not overwhelming at all.

The taste was (as my wife said), like a sledgehammer to the mouth. Molasses, DARK chocolate, coffee, dates, and alcohol. Sweet too, almost too sweet. This is a strong beer, and it tastes that way. Thick mouthfeel too. Somewhat overwhelming.

Overall, this is a good beer, but a little over the top for me. The mouthfeel and strength are more in line with a barleywine like Old Crustacean (although the flavor is obviously totally different); and this from a guy who generally likes dark beers.

On that note; this is by far the darkest and most opaque beer I have ever seen. I held it up to a lamp, and no light came through. I was so surprised that I went and got my ludicrously powerful LED emitter light (brightest thing you have ever seen; built the switching PSU myself to drive a luxeon emitter for all the electronics nerds out there) which I stuffed into an old plastic LED flashlight.

In comparison, a Guinness looks like a dark amber with that light behind it.

Insane; this light will leave you unable to see indoors for at least a minute if you look at it. Think about it ;)

edited: I have grown into some of these bigger beers, and this beer is a lot better than I gave it credit for.

Photo of Morey
4.02/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've had this beer on-tap several times on my way home from work. Pours pitch black with a thin goldish-brown colored head that hangs around til' the bottom of the glass. Superb head retention!

Smells of semi-sweet chocolate (although no actual chocolate is used in brewing) alcohol, ripe figs, and coffee.

Alcohol content was bumped up to 10.6% this year, and it's noticeable. Strong flavor of roasted malts up front. Just a hint of hop flavor. This beer doesn't have the bitterness that many other RIS do, which I don't mind. There's a slight fruity flavor in the finish as well.

Mouthfeel is silky smooth with a fairly low carbonation.

A very nice IS for the price.

Morey's Bottom Line: Alcohol is noticeable, but it's OK as long as you're in the mood for a big beer. Definitely a good choice for a Stout during the winter months. It'll warm you up, that's for sure.

**NOTE** This beer ages really well. I recommend buying two 4packs....one for now, & one for the basement.

Photo of dsa7783
3.19/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

From a 12oz bottle, copped singly from Wine and more in West Orange has a limited bottling-winter 07-08 mark on the neck...Pours a opaque pitch black hue with a minimal tan head...Smell is reminescent of bittersweet dark burnt chocolate...Flavor is very alcoholic with a cocoa-spresso very bitter lingering finish and a very strong warm alcoholic glow...Mouthfeel and drinkability are marred by a ridiculously strong alcohol percentage of 10.6%...Slight vodka taste detracts from the presence of any character or flavor...In my opinion too strong to be truly enjoyed as a stout.

Photo of csmiley
4.11/5  rDev -1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark brown, opaque color. Got a little less than an inch of head that stuck around for a while. Lacing was great. Picture perfect.

S - Chocolate comes across first but is quickly backed up by roasted malt. Espresso seems to round out the aroma profile.

T - Taste follows aroma. Chocolate - roasted malt - espresso. There is also a strong alcohol flavor. Pretty good balance considering the 10.6 %.

M - This one is really pushing the full bodied envelope. Carbonation is great.

D - It is big and strong. Proceeding with caution is a good idea. Having said that, I consider this beer to be really good...in moderation.

Photo of Graham5161986
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours a jet black with a nice 2 1/2 finger creamy, tan, head - good retention and leaves a nice sticky lace.

S: Dark chocolate, ripe fruit (raisins, plums, cherries)

T: chocolaty up front with a soury-sweet fruity tang and a subtle mocha flavour on the finish Nice and complex, very intriguing. the 10.6% ABV is hidden very well.

M: thick and creamy with a good kick of carbonation and a silky smooth finish.

D: This is a great beer. It has a really nice bouquet of complex scents and flavours and has a higher ABV than most popular stouts. Even still, it is very drinkable, and despite it's thick and creamy body, I could definitely put 2 or 3 of these down in one sitting.

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.43/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an opaque black with a dark tan/brown head. Nose is strong with roasted bean qualities and a bit of alcohol on there as well. Hoooieeee! Man. The first time this thing hit my tongue, I did a little dance on over to my sister to try who has recently got into stouts (cuz she read some magazine article that stout is good for women cuz it has a lot of iron in it...well...whatever it takes). Flavor is smooth and even, though she says it is kind of bitter on the end. I personally don’t think it is bitter, I just think it is robust. Feel? Like silk. The first sip was amazing. Definitely drinkable, especially for a Russian Imperial Stout. I am always weary of trying to uber-hyped beers, but this one delivers. I guess it is good I will be living in Brooklyn shortly. Killer. Try it.

Photo of bluemoonswoon
3.76/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle (limited botting winter 07-08) poured into an imperial pint glass.

A: A fairly virorous pour yeilds quite an impressive head four inches at first then cascades beautifully into a two inch fluffy coffee colored masterpiece of a head that stays a cap for the length of the tasting. A jet black beauty with suprisingly sticky lace. Very inviting, almost seductive when the glass is paired with the bottle.

S: Chocolate for sure (so the name fits) but is not as overpowering as in other beers, there is a sweet plum and prune dark fruitiness here that almost takes over the chocolate aromas.

T/MF: A bitter sharpness strikes the tongue like baker's chocolate and stays on for quite a while, just a very bitter chocolate taste (i suppose this is why is is called BLACK chocolate stout), really hardly anything that the nose would have indicated. The brew is thick and heavy on the tongue and the alochol heat is very easy to sense as it just hammers away at the taste and leaves the tongue ragged and a bit dry. The taste is sort of difficult to distinguish as the heat from the alochol covers it up a bit; dried fruit like plums and raisins come out a bit near the finish and the chocolate character becomes a bit more pronounced in the long and drawn out aftertaste but the beginning and middle of the beer are sort of lost on me.

D: Really sort of disapointed in this one, I mean it is nice and complex and I do enjoy that warming alcohol sensation but this beer left me wanting a bit more and compared to other beers of this style there are a number I would reach for before grabbing this one.

Photo of lightindarkness
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into an imperial pint

A – Beer poured nearly light-proof deep dark color with a high thick caramel head. Lots of lace.

S – Heavily of malt. Chocolate overtones with smooth caramel, vanilla, roasted grains, whiffs of alcohol and burnt marshmallow.

T – Very smooth. Tobacco leaf with strong chocolate. Some alcohol taste present. Flavor deepens at the finish with herbs and roasted grains rising to a slight bitterness balanced with lightly sweet vanilla and chocolate. Not heavy on caramel or chocolate. Bitterness is smooth and subtle. Not syrupy. Fairly neutral balance with predominant middle tones.

M – Smooth with medium to light body for an RIS. Carbonation is pleasant. Sticky without being syrupy. Alcohol is very palatable.

D - This is a very drinkable beer. The alcohol hides while the taste enhances with each sip. A complex deep beer without an overbearing feel or taste to the mouth or stomach.

Photo of cjgator3
4.01/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A- 12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Pours a dark black color with a nice tan head with very good lacing and retention.

S- The aroma is dark roasted malts, chocolate, and alcohol soaked fruits.

T- The taste is dark roasted malts with a long bitter and boozy finish that warms the stomach from the high ABV.

M- The mouthfeel is thick and smooth on the palate.

D- This is definitely a sipper, the drinkability suffers from the high ABV.

Overall, this is a pretty solid chocolate stout that is recommended.

Photo of jeffmonarch
3.64/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle in a pint glass.

A - Dark brown in color with a nice medium brown head.

S - Lighter chocolate smell than most chocolate stouts.

T - Rich chocolate taste with slight bitterness.

M - Full bodied with good carbonation.

D - Great beer. This is my favorite chocolate stout.

Photo of erosier
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an excellent black color from the bottle with a thick caramel brown head that sticks to the sides of the glass. Really strong aroma of heavy roasted malts, light hops, and even a little alcoholic aroma to it. The taste is excellent! Strong earthy malts combine for a complex malty chocolatey flavor with an aftertaste that is kind of chocolatey and a little bit alcoholic. The mouthfeel is good, especially of something of high alcoholic content. Amazingly it is very drinkable and I had a few of these before I called it a night. Great beer for this time of year when it gets cold here in New England.

Photo of GPHarris
4.67/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

'05-'06 vintage

a - poured a one finger thick coffee-colored head into an oversized goblet. the body was black and poured like motor oil. left a light sheet and ring throughout. this baby looked niiiice.
s - deep, dark, powerful chocolate aroma with a hint of dark fruits like raisins.
t - roasted chocolate and coffee, very malty and rich brew.
m - chewy and thick, wonderful mouthfeel.
d - what a great sipper this is. as good a beer for dessert on a cold night that i can think of.

Photo of Gambrinus1184
4.42/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12-ounce bottle at G.W. Tavern, Washington Depot, Conn.

A: Poured a jet black cocoa color with a nice covering of tan foam. There is a slight ruby shine when held to the light, but this thing is so deep and dark, it's almost scary.

S: Smells of deep roasted chocolate and caramel malts with a smoky charcoal characteristic.

T: Sweet, warming chocolate malt flavor. Very deep and interesting imperial stout. The use of sweet chocolate malts goes great with the chicken pot pie I had, but would be better served as a dessert beer.

M: Mouthfeel is slightly syrupy, but not too heavy that it's a chore to put down.

D: I had two with dinner, and I have a feeling this would go great with dessert, or even as dessert. The ABV is up there, and it's a heavy brew that might blow out your palate for anything else, but it's worth it to have a couple of these.

Great winter brew and a delicious variation on the style. Brooklyn, you have impressed me yet again.

Photo of jdg204
4.51/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

After passing up a shot at this hard to find winter offering last year, I scooped a 6'er up as soon as I found one. It was my second Brooklyn offering of the week and let's just say, I'm becoming a quick fan.

Appearance - A thick, syrupy brew pours pitch black with beautiful coffee color head.

Smell - Very nice dark roasted chocolate smell with a bit of liquor undertone.

Taste - Very interesting balance, first comes across as a nice high cacao dark chocolate (especially the roasted undertone) mixed with a bit of hops. Then you get into a bit of bourbon/vanilla undertone which really gives this a nice sipping quality, similar to a barleywine.

Mouthfeel - The roasted flavor leaves a wonderful aftertaste, leaving the mouth quite satisfied. Take your time on this one to give your tastebuds a chance to savor, I recco a tulip glass for slow sipping.

Drinkability - Second straight winner from Brooklyn and maybe the best RIS I've had yet. The biggest difference, they didn't overdue it with the hops and they let the roasted malt do the talking. I've finally found a competitor worthy of Storm King, I'll have to do some comparisons with West Coast brews now to see if this really is the champ. This brew lives up to the hype, grab it if you get a chance!

Photo of jeonseh
3.93/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Very dark and opaque with a thin head that leaves a bit of lacing down the glass. The head is a mocha color with a slight red tint.

The smell is a lot of carmeleized sugar mixed in with chocolate; A lot of sweetness coming off this guy.

Taste is actually kinda a sweet, a good mix of toffee, dark chocolate,caramel and coffee....actually feel like i can taste pure sugar in this too, which is nice buy almost makes it overly sweet. At the end, get a bit of the sugar sweetness that fades away into a bitterness that almost numbs the mouth; really no hint of the high alcohol other than that

Mouthfeel is kinda thick and leaves a nice coating on the tongue; overall very little carbonation in this one and a mix between being either thick or thin within the mouth.

Overall, a good beer to enjoy maybe with dessert but not one that I would go back to repeatedly; I feel as if it is overly sweet and can't get past the sugar taste...to me, it's not chocolate that dominates but just pure cane sugar.

Photo of TheodorHerzl
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown almost black with soft ruby accents. A small brown head started the beer off, but quickly dissipated and left minimal lacing on the glass. The nose is as expected by the title of the beer. I get alot of bitter chocolate with plenty of roasted malt and coffee. I also can barely smell some alcohol coming through as well. The taste is robust and full of bittersweet chocolate, coffee, and espresso. I also get a good dose of rum soaked raisins as well. I don't get much hop flavoring even though the grain bill says it has fuggle hops for flavoring. The mouthfeel on this beer is my favorite aspect. It is thick and coating, but still somehow remains a certain silky smoothness that is really remarkable. This has a high ABV, but the drinkability is really a nice surprise on this beer.

Overall I think this is above average for the style and such a well made beer. I can't wait a year to taste the ones I've saved from this year.

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

2007-08 version...

Look is black with only a hint of brown. Enormous, puffy cocoa-brown head. Thick gobs of brown lace.

Roasted but also sweet. Robust dark coffee aroma. Hints of dark chocolate. Smells dark and thick, burnt and harsh. There is a touch of dark grape smell.

Blast of burnt malt, chocolate layer on top. Heavy strong coffee with a shot of strong whiskey alcohol flavor.. Alcohol flavor gives a sharp bite akin to a barleywine.

Feels thick and oily. Leaves a sharp, alcoholic film. It's a hard swallow. It's not a smooth, creamy stout. It's harsh, strong and full of alcohol.

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Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout from Brooklyn Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 6,129 ratings.