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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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6,091 Ratings

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Ratings: 6,091
Reviews: 2,722
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 10.6%
Wants: 349
Gots: 1,134 | FT: 55
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: 6,091 | Reviews: 2,722 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of becktone
3.49/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Eye: Black in color, motor oil, what can you expect...this, yes. Head is poor; tan in color it has very little retention, formation, and doesn't look like it is promising any lacing....this brew provides some decent lacing.

Nose: Alcohol is evident. Dark fruit and roasted dark grains make up the majority of this brew's aroma profile also small hints of chocolate malts. Not much more than that, overall the aroma is pretty good, though I wish that it were a bit more potent, more room filling.

Tongue: Not as complex as the Bell's Expedition which I just drank a few minutes ago, however it still has a large variety of flavors. Chocolate flavor doesn't come through as much until the aftertaste of the beer, it really shines there. Alcohol is detectable. Roasted flavors are also here, though they don't seem to be all that strong. This beer's flavor is more well rounded than the Bell's, whereas the Bell's was a bunch of different flavors providing depth this brew seems to have but one flavor, with little depth-much of the different flavors associated with the style combined into one blanket flavor.

Mouthfeel and Drinkability: Medium on the palate though it seems to me that it is leaning towards the lighter side of medium...the higher levels of carbonation in this beer reinforce my opinion. Finish is dry and leaves a chocolate flavor in the mouth with an alcohol associated flavor in the air. This is a brew I'll drink but won't be excited to buy again. I much prefer the Bell's Expedition over this one. Don't get me wrong its a great beer, but the flavor is not up my alley.

Photo of andebrice
4.08/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a rich black color with smaller tan/brown head. Smells of sweet apple and darker fruits raisins, plums, and a slight vanilla. tastes complex of raisins, dark chocolate, and charcoal. Finishes with an overpowering charcoal taste. Carbonation is a bit overpowering for this style, mild carbonation works better in a a stout, in my opinion. This one is a bit too dark for my taste, and should be noted. Although with a 10.6 alc my down sides are worth overlooking. and i would have another one if offered.

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

Appearance: Dark black, not seeing any light coming through. Finger of brown head forms after a hard pour.

Smell: Alcohol is at the forefront, along with sweet chocolate and vanilla aromas. There is a bit of an oaky smell as well.

Taste: Sweet and chocolatey at first. This gives way to a malty flavor that transitions to a slight alcohol flavor which sticks around after each swallow. Leaves a nice bit of alcohol warmth as well.

Mouthfeel: Thick and creamy. Coats the mouth well but is not overpowering or too sticky. Very nice.

Drinkability: As with many Imperial Stouts, this beer suffers in this category just because it is very heavy. Within the style, however, this beer has a lot of good flavor without being too heavy. Definitely worth seeking this one out during the winter release each year.

Photo of biking4beer
3.45/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

07-08 Vintage
12 oz bottle enjoyed on a cool winter day after hitting the slopes in Breckenridge.

Pours a pitch black with a nice brown head. Good lacing.

First whiff brings the obvious to the nose. Chocolate. Roasted malts. A hint of some bitter baker's chocolate. Even a touch of pine, or is that the blue spruce I just put up for a Christmas tree?

Milk Chocolate up front on the palate. Some bitter dark chocolate too. Is there lactose in this one? It has a slightly milky taste and feel. The taste ends on a tart/sour note that is slightly unpleasant. There is also too much hop bitterness in my opinion.

Mouthfeel is the highlight of this beer. Thick and creamy. Perfect carbonation.

This is a good beer, but I feel the latest incarnation is still a bit green. I have no doubt this well become a finer beer over time. If you have plenty to spare, try one now and save the rest. If you only have a couple, set them away for at least a year.

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

Got this in a trade from limesmut-thanks for sending it my way.

Pours a beautiful pitch black with a brown 1 finger head that sticks around mostly for the entire drink with some nice lacing on the side of the glass

Chocolately dark aroma with a bit of burnt coffee taste, but not too strong.

Malty, chocolatey, and with a bit of sweetness & bitterness comes through the taste. Relatively well balanced with only a bit of alcohol kicking in-nothing too much. Very thick and tasty.

I didnt drink this with anything to eat, but I could imagine that it would be nice to go with a dessert. Very drinkable and smooth to enjoy for such high ABV.

This was a great beer and I will jump at the chance to try another.

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

This review reflects 2 tastings from the same 6 pack a couple months apart.
1st tasting
A:Very dark, nearly opaque with faint brown tones. Tan Head.
S: Some roasted smell, boozy
T: Lots of alcohol in the taste. Hints of roasted malt with some bitterness.
M: Light carbonation with thick, smooth mouthfeel
D: Very drinkable, don’t notice effects of EtOH but the taste of it is WAY too prominent. Some age should mellow the alcohol and let the other flavors shine.

2nd tasting
A: Same as 1st. Initially a little cold so minimal head
S: Less boozy in the nose. Roasted malt aroma still predominant.
T: Alcohol much less noticeable, even after just 2 months. Roasted flavors and chocolate are very evident now. This has become very nice.
M: Same as 1st. Very smooth
D: Much more drinkable now that the alcohol flavor has subsided. This is already become a much better beer, and I hope will continue to evolve over time. I can’t wait to try another in a couple months.

Photo of Mudpuppet
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Poured from a 12oz bottle into my sniffer glass. Pours a dark black with no light penetrating.

S- Red grapes and coffee. Slight alcohol on the nose.

T- Strong grape and prune flavors that give way to coffee grinds flavor. Very tasty and complex flavor.

M- Not overly carbonated. Flavors and sensations across your entire tongue.

D- This is one that is great in moderation. Intense in flavor and alcohol. Delicious one I look forward to when is begins to get cold.

Photo of ThatWineGuy
4.28/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Winter 07-08 version. Poured very black with an impressive dark-mocha head of different shaped bubbles, quite dense, about a half finger on pouring. The head eventually flattened across the surface of the glass to reveal numerous centres of rapid, small bubble carbonation, a good sign indeed. Good lacing.

Smells very rich, aromatic strong coffee with flashes of hazelnut, slightly Frangelico. The taste is bitter dark chocolate predominant, aromatic coffee, rich and powerful, with a strong roasted malt finish. Very full bodied, dense mouthfeel yet a creamy and buttery texture. I got distracted prior to opening the bottle and it warmed a bit, so the high alcohol content was quite pronounced. However, it did not detract from delightful taste experience. This beer was still a major treat, great with dessert, or to have as dessert, something to savour.

Photo of prototypic
4.28/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a gorgeous dark brown (practically black) color. Head is off white and a generous two fingers. Retention and lacing were top notch.

Smell: Initially it has a very rich, dark chocolaty malt smell. Blends very well with an expresso aroma. Neither really overpowers. But, clearly chocolate and espresso are the primary features. It has some slight dark fruit notes and a bit of a toasted smell to it.

Taste: Again, dark chocolate and an espresso-coffee taste are the main features. They are blended extremely well. It does have a bit of a vanilla taste that I didn't pick up on the nose. Dark fruit flavors round it out, as well as a touch of hops.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It's medium to thick bodied. Carbonation is very good. It's strong at 10.6%, but very drinkable nonetheless. Clearly not a session beer, but very smooth and easy to drink. Overall, this is a fantastic beer. Highly recommended.

Photo of ksbrainard
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pitch black (of course). The head is brown with tints of purple in it, comes in relatively sturdy, and sticks around on the edge of the glass. There are even bubbles around in the middle of the glass.

Smell: Roasty and burnt. I can pick up some black cherry maybe, and some milk chocolate and even dark chocolate. There is a hint of alcohol.

Taste: Alcohol is there, and somewhat strong, but not in an overbearing way. The dark malts balance it out very well. There is bitterness at the end, comprised of malts and alcohol. Dark candied fruit stays with you as the beer warms you from within. There is maybe a subtle chocolate flavor, with a hint of nuttiness.

Mouthfeel: Very dense and solid. Carbonation can hardly be felt, and might actually be the sensation of alcohol on the tongue. There is a slick feeling sticking to the roof of my mouth. It is dried out a bit at the end, but only on the tongue.

Drinkability: This is very enjoyable. I especially enjoyed it after dinner, just sitting around and sipping gently here and there. Try it with some chocolate cake, or even a yellow cake - sweet foods bring out a rum-like character.

In case all this isn't enough, according to the receipt, this cost less than the average craft six pack, at $7.99 (+tax and deposit). If that's right, Brooklyn is leaving money on the table, this is totally worth more. Simply stated: if you see this beer, buy it!

Photo of Biscuit033
4.61/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Black as night with two finger brown head with nice lacing.

S: Spruce and pine hops upfront, sweet malts and hints of dark coffee.

T: Spruce, chocolate, smoky malts, pine, toffee, molasses, and licorice. There is a lot of flavors in this beer and all are delicious.

M: Smooth and creamy and thick like syrup with a long warm, bitter and clean finish.

D: This a beer that I would never turn down. The alcohol is evident but balanced well by all of the other flavors. This is a great sipper for after dinner.

Photo of sethmeister
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle which says Winter 06 / 07and has been stored in my cellar for a bit shy of one year.

Impenetrable gloss black in my pint glass topped with a foamy taupe head (2 fingers) which slowly recedes leaving hints of lace.

The scent is immediately roasted grains and soft bitter chocolate.

Taste is much the same. Smooth and creamy with a long finish of soft cocoa dust. I find a faint hint of molasses in there as well. The 10.6% ABV listed on the bottle, if correct, is hidden remarkably well. Hop presence is minimal, though of course this bottle has aged for as much as a year.

Mouthfeel is creamy and rather full, though not thick.

Drinkability is very high.

Very nice smooth subtle RIS.

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

05-06 Bottling. Thanks Joey - you're the man!

Pours a dark black with a 1/2 finger tan head that quickly dies but leaves some lacing.

The smell! I got some chocolate from a few feet away when opening. Smelling more closely gives me dark chocolate and dark fruits. Nice!

The taste is a wonderful blend of flavors - dark chocolate, espresso, roasted malts, dark fruits - with a beautiful roasted finish. This is a most excellent RIS indeed. I love the coffee and chocolate in this one - would make for a great dessert pairing.

Mouthfeel is rich with just enough carbonation to keep it from cloying. Very well done.

Drinkability I would say is very good on this.

Highly recommended. Definitely one of the better imperial stouts out there! I'd put a few ahead of this, but this definitely gives the best of the best a run for their money.

Photo of thartman
4.06/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served up a Winter 07-08 vintage in an English Pint Glass. The color was black with a thin, light brown head. There were nice sticky lacings on the glass.

I noticed a smell of dark chocolate and cherries, somewhat sweet smelling.

The taste was complex, bitter like espresso coffee and unsweetened chocolate, roasted barley and malts, and a hint of chocolate covered cherries. There is a definite alcohol hit on the back of the throat. The flavor is bold and there is medium body..., and it mellows a bit as it comes up to room temperature, a very nice cold weather winter beer. I think I'll stash a couple away for next season.

Photo of Ieatlambfries
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pitch black in color with a beautiful three finger light brown rocky head. As it slowly dissipates it leaves a dense blanket of fine bubbles on the walls of my glass.

Roasted malts and cocoa on the nose. Slight suggestion of licorice with an undertone of brandy like alcohol.

Up front flavors of dark dried fruits, figs and raisins. Followed by roasted cocoa and burnt espresso with a hint of toffee. Boozy alcohol in the finish with a hint of hops.

Mouthfeel is thick and creamy with an oily slickness left on the lips and tongue. Very quaffable, rich in flavor and a joy sip and savor. Great beer.

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

2007 bottle poured Jet black, with a nice chocolate brown head. That quickly turns into a nice lace. Aromas of toasted malts and sweet malts fill the nose. Thick creamy palete with a lite warm alcohol finish to it .Flavors of chocolate ,sweet malt , some coffee and light hop bitter finish .
This is a very good Imp stout, a great winter treat

Photo of montageman
4.58/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass. 07-08 bottling.

Yet another fairly new addition to the Michigan beer scene, my only other Brooklyn Brewing experience was at the Chip Shop in Brooklyn. Oddly, I had this beer in Brooklyn as well. Pouring a thick, viscous black with a nice cocoa head that goes away fast and leaves some lacing. The alcohol is very present in the nose along with some vanilla, coffee, and chocolate. This tastes like any Imperial stout should chocolate, coffee, dark fruit, and some vanilla - perfect flavor that will only improve with age. Mouthfeel is rich and creamy. Aside from the nearly 11% ABV, this is very nice stout. Mellow with just a slight alcohol burn. Highest recommendation.

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

Winter 06-07 release, 10.6%ABV, served in snifter.

Appearance: Oily, viscous black with milk chocolate head that doesn't stay around long (presumably because of the high ABV)

Smell: Vanilla comes across strong along with strong, sweet, creamy coffee (sweetened with evaporated milk). Caramel notes and of course chocolate. Hints of licorice coming through as well. Very complex and difficult to decipher.

Taste: Creamy, dark cocoa throughout and towards the end. Almost as complex as the smell. Aftertastes of licorice and strong creamy coffee. Distinct lack of roastiness. Alcohol present, but well-masked by for the high ABV. Very well crafted and balanced.

Mouthfeel: Creamy, milky mouthfeel. Smooth and silky throughout with perfect level of carbonation for imperial stout.

Drinkability: Held out very well for the 1 year that it was cellared. Alcohol is a bit high for anything but an occasional sipper. Excellent Brooklyn offering - an American classic.

Photo of Risser09
4.54/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a large snifter - '05'-'06' vintage served at cellar temp.

Appearance: Pours out and india ink black with a dark brown head. The head is only about 1/2 and inch in size and has various bubble sizes. Swirling creates a bit of lace but it eventually succumbs to gravity. The head dissipates within a minute.

Smell: Wow. Chocolate malt, roasted malt, dark chocolate, espresso, caramelized dark brown sugar, pipe tobacco and lots more. There are dried fruit aromas of fig, cranberry and cherry. This smells like one sugary beer. Alcohol is hardly discernable from the smell.

Taste: Wham, right in the tastebuds. An almost blistering maltiness hits my mouth and has a coffee-like bitterness. Flavors include 85% dark chocolate bars, dark cherries, hershey's syrup and espresso. Following those up in the finish is an espresso flavor. The lingering flavor in my mouth is burnt toast and burnt popcorn. This one is super malty. Not as much sugary sweetness as I expected from the nose.

Mouthfeel: This one is big and bold, with a bittering coffee feel. The chocolate is not as sweet as expected and the booze is well hidden. It does make an impression with my stomach, however. This is a tremendous winter beer, and is well worth the below $30 price tag that a case carries.

Drinkability: This is a sheer winner in terms of value, strength, appropriateness and even drinkability. I can't believe this is the first time I've ever had this one. I should make it a point to purchase a case every winter. Very nice.

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

Did a blind mini-vertical with an 06-07 (i'll call it the 06) and an 07-08 (i'll call it the 07). Individually based on the look of the beer, the smell of the beer, and the taste of the beer, I was able to identify the older vintage. It was a very significant difference.

The '06 had about half as much head as the '07; but both had ample mocha colored head atop a jet black body.

The aroma on the '07 had more yeast esters and especially a prominent banana aroma. The '06 had a more chocolaty aroma and was incredibly smooth.

Taste wise, they were closer than aroma. The '06 was very smooth with chocolate and roast malt character. The '07 was significantly more bitter and the alcohol was more present, but had the same chocolate and roast behind that.

The mouthfeel on both was very similar. Pretty heavy bodied with a long aftertaste.

Drinkability is weird to describe. In a way, i want to avoid drinking this to let it age. However, the older it gets, the better it tastes. Really a good RIS but it needs age to get there.

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

Poured on tap at the Brick Store into a Brooklyn chalice and served at cellar temp

A - Arrived at the bar a dark black with fading dark tan head into a nice impressive lacing

S - Smell of roasted cocoa beans along with a spicey smell (nutmeg possibly). Hints of raisins or prunes...along with a small whiff of warming alcohol..very inviting

T - The taste was very complex..strong notes of coffee and bitter chocolate along with a sweetness of fruit and currants...a nice dry hop finish round out the taste experience giving an overall taste characteristic that can only be described as rich

M - A thick, viscous feel of this brew coats the mouth and the alcohol warm the mouth and throat

D - Certainly what I call a "desert" beer or a night cap beer..this is to be sipped and enjoyed and should in my opinion be the finish of the night...but it's a damn good finish

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

I poured this at a cool temp into my snifter. Purchased the '06-'07 version at Thirsty's in York, Pa.

A - Deep ebony w/ a thin tan head and decent lace.

S - Sweet, fruity esters w/ a roasted element and pine scent of hops, there is a rummy full sweet alcoholic not in the nose.

M - Viscous, sweet, complex in depth w/ spiced acidity and full carbonation.

T - Luscious plum and date sweetness w/ roasted coffee and dark chocolate character and acidity. Sweet w/ prune type dry fruit and stone fruit notes. A rich malty taste that is punctuated by a piney hop acidity and spiced character. Slightly drying w/ a full alcoholic essence - a relaxer, smooth on the tongue. Something to look forward to tasting each year, but doesn't attempt to hide its 10.6% stature.

D - Great Stout, outstanding flavor and feel, A very good example of the style, but not one to drink multiples of. This one bottle held me for the night, I savored it and its nightcap properties.

Photo of OKCNittany
3.88/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: 1/2" rich brown head with decent retention & lacing. Black body.

S: Plenty of chocolate and burnt/dark malts. A touch of alcohol too.

T: As the smell, big on the dark chocolate - with burnt malt and alcohol. It's quite bitter. Unfortunately, the alcohol interferes with the other flavors.

M: Rich, full body. Low carbonation. Smooth with a dry finish and a lasting bitter chocolate aftertaste.

D: Surprisingly drinkable despite the pronounced alcohol. It's a shame that the alcohol isn't masked better, as it gets in the way of an otherwise very good brew.

Photo of OWSLEY069
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours jet black, with a dark tan to brown head. In the aroma, chocolate, roasty malts, and a hint of alcohol. In the taste, roasty malt and chocolate. A bigger body and bitter mouthfeel, with a semi dry chocolate, roasty malt aftertaste. Nice chocolate flavor, and a big body. Hides the alcohol quite well.

Photo of bassmantin
3.63/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a deep brown with a moderate brown/tan head. Very appealing. Smells of roasted nut and chocolate flavors.

Taste is very intense, with strong alcohol flavor throughout, especially in the aftertaste. The taste is rich in chocolate and very sweet up front, but it soon gives way to the overpowering alcohol taste.

Overall: Somewhat intriguing taste but intensity hurts drinkability.

Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout from Brooklyn Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 6,091 ratings.