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Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout | Brooklyn Brewery

2,779 Reviews
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Brooklyn Black Chocolate StoutBrooklyn Black Chocolate Stout

Brewed by:
Brooklyn Brewery
New York, United States | website

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-04-2000

User Reviews
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Reviews: 2,779 | Ratings: 6,543
Photo of SaunaKing
4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A pitch black stout with a wonderful coffee colour head. Smells of rich quality chocolate. Taste of course is choclate too. But a little bit too much alcohol burn in it. Its pretty easy drinking but you can really tell you get a little extra in this beer. The alcohol is a little too close to the surface. I prefer it felt but not tasted. This is however a pretty good stout with a rich chocolate taste and only the aftertaste brings it down a little in my opinion.

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Photo of Erix
4.82/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From bottle poured in pint glass.
Appearance: Well, its hard for an Imperial Stout (or American Double Stout?) to look much better than this. Absolutely black, with a dark, slowly developing head. Looks nice and thick.
Smell: Wonderfully dark, sweet chocolate. Hew did they ever get this much chocolate scent in here without using chocolate? Truly fantastic.
Taste: Bitter burnt chocolatey goodness all around! Wow, this is delicious. I've worked my way through about half the case despite my best attempts to pace myself, and it grows on me more with each bottle. Sweeter than you expect, the hops really play around with the roastiness to accentuate, rather than overwhelm, this malty backbone. Finishes with a soft, thick, coating malt sweetness. Well hidden alcohol.
Mouthfeel: Smooth and almost creamy, the bitterness doesnt pucker your mouth and shrivel your tongue like I often anticipate in a beer this color and strength. Great stuff.
Drinkability: Very easy to down this beer. A beverage this great and a budget as small as mine make it a must to never have more than one bottle chilled at any time.

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Photo of maccroz
3.83/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

I was amazed to find out that this is an 8.5% ABV beer. It hardly tastes of alcohol at all.

This beer pours like motor oil. It appears to have the same color and viscosity of used engine oil with a dark tan frothy head to top it off.

The first taste was a bit surprising. It's not bitter like most beers its color, instead it tastes of a chocolate syrup with a chalky texture. It's quite sweet, and has a complex lingering aftertaste.

Six of these beers will be more than enough for any advocate as they are more of a dessert beer than a drinkin' brew.

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Photo of ram3139
4.43/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark and forboding. Opaque black with a dark tan head. Head was thin and didnt last too long.

Smell: Not too strong, roasted coffee/chocolate with a very slight whiff of alcohol.

Taste: Excellent. Starts out with a blast of coffee, chocolate and a bunch of others i cant put my finger on. Nothing really dominates until the end, when the chocolate lingers on the palate indefinetly. Drink a few, and you can almost taste it for the rest of the night. A little bit of alcohol warming at the end, but not much.

Mouthfeel: Very good. Not watery by any means, but with medium carbonation it doesnt have a real 'heavy'.

Drinkability: As I said, not a real heavy beer, but it did fill me up. A few is no problem, but I don't think it would be a great sesssion beer, at least not for me. But with ~9%abv, you wouldn't want to down it like guinness anyway.

Overall, I love this beer. its a winter brew, but I plan on stashing a few 6 packs away for the summer.

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

Winter 2004-2005 bottling.

This was a VERY deep brown, almost opaque beer with a one finger tan head. It looked promising.

The aroma was of rich dark roasted malt, with hints of cocoa. Quite interesting, something I have never noticed before, even with Sam Adams Chocolate Bock.

The taste was of smooth roasted malt and bitter chocolate, with a coffee aftertaste. Some alcohol was noticeable, but it didn't taste like an 8.5 % ABV brew.

This was really an excellent stout, and if you can find it, do yourself a favor and get some.

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

Poured out a blacker than black color with a nice tan head that went to lacing eventually. I thought the beer was going to swallow the light in the room with it being so dark.

Smell was nice. Roasted malts with a nice underlying aroma of coffee and dark ripe fruit. A tad of hops hiding at times to give it a balancing effect.

Taste was nice. Roasted malts along with some roasted coffee beans strike the palate first. Hops are present and welcoming actually. Towards the end the chocolate kicks in and really balances this beer very well.

Mouthfeel was full bodied and carbonation was low to medium. Flavors really came through.

I'm sorry I didn't grab a six pack of this stuff last year. I saw it but decided not to get it. Dumb move. I'll grab a 6 of this every winter. Great, great stuff.

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Photo of sulldaddy
4.46/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

04-05 bottling. I am drinking in a flute glass at room temp. The beer pours a pitch black into my glass with an immense tan creamy silky head foaming up 2.5 inches. Leaving some tight latticework as it fades to a robust surface layer. Aroma is chocolate, raisins, white grape, some espresso and a hint of roasted malt as well.
First sip, introduces a sublimely smooth and creamy concoction onto my palate. Such a rich brew and so easy to imbibe!
Very mild rolling carbonation almost gives the impression of a cask ale. Flavor starts mild with some roasted malt and chocolate, this rolls to some sweeter chocolate and finishes with a bit of espresso bitter mixing with the sweet chocolate, I guess similar to a mocha. Very nice mix and definitely a malt lovers paradise! This brew is rather large and I find it incredibly easy to drink.
This year's batch isnt as bitter as others, and I rather enjoy it. Give it a shot if you can!

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

The neck label says Winter 2004-2005, and "Brooklyn Brewery, Utica, NY."

Pours solid black, with a finger's width of cocoa colored, dense looking head. As I wait for my second to warm, the head has receeded to a thing covering- but left a nearly opaque lace as it went down. Very pleasing, it brings with it a fine sense of anticipation, and does not disappoint.

Except for the nose. A bit acrid, it smells as it the roasted malts were a bit burnt, and a touch too much of alchohol. Sugery and fruity alchohol. At least that is what I thought of a cooler version. It mellows nicely as it warms, and gets an extra half point.

Very smooth chocolate toasted coffee malts, molded into a very smooth and complete package. A nice fruity touch, plums? comes out as it goes down.

I wrote in my notes 'very smooth, with a tiny touch of alchohol tang at the end' but with another in front of me, a bit warmer, the tiny touch becomes almost nothing.

Very smooth, silky, velvety, whatever metaphore you want to use for it. Goes down very nicely, wich makes it a great sipper. Certainly a very, very nice beer.

That said, I just stuck one in the closet, to see how it tastes next year! Interesting also to see it's hourly evolution as it warms, as well.

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Photo of aquatonex
3.53/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

My second chocolate stout, not as a good as Young's...

Pours jet black with no head. There was a little dirty lacing. Smells strong with heavy roasted malts, hops, and chocolate at the end of the nose. Minimal carbonation. At first, you taste the roasted malts. Then, the bitterness comes over your tongue very strongly, first hops then the cocoa. Very genuine cocoa taste, but also quite bitter. Bitterness lasts with you after your swallow due to the thickness of the brew. Although it is pretty good, I'd rather have Young's.

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

Limited bottling (winter '03-'04) and cellared for 6 months by myself. Purchased from Norm's Beer & Wine (near DC) in fall 2004 and consumed in December 2004. 12 oz bottle poured thick and with a half-finger brown head that quickly settled to a partial ring around the inside of the mug. Pitch black, couldn't see through this one at all. Smelled chocolate, some roast, licorice, and a faint grainy and alcohol-ish kind of 'barleywine sweet'. Thick mouthfeel. Coffee roast blended really well with a rich chocolate. A fine chocolate, not a dry or waxy cheap chocolate. Plum was noticable as was molasses (with some searching). Dry start, followed by the dry rough roast and finishing somewhere between sweet and dry. Boy, this was a nice stout. The flavor persisted just a short time, as the thick beer clung to my tongue, allowing me to reflect on this beer with a pleasant chocolatey flavor.

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Photo of Hibernator
4.7/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Brooklyn Brewery Black Chocolate Stout
Limited Bottling - Winter '04 - '05

This could be the most excited I've been about a beer in a while. Always a highly anticipated winter time classic for me, I was glad to pick up a six pack this evening.

When my friends and I were about 20 years old, we ordered a log of this from the Brooklyn Brewery. We served the beer with Hershey chocolates and strawberries. It was a great night and really opened my eyes to the wonders of the craft beer movement. We had friends who rarely stepped outside the Budweiser box and were drinking pints of this that night and loving it.

Little did I know then that my friends and I were ahead of our time as far as great beer goes.

As for this review...

I served the Brooklyn BCS in a tulip glass. This is one beer that will age well with time. Pours a very dark shade of black with an attractive tannish-brown head. Dirty brown sticky lacings cling all over the sides of the glass.

Strong whiffs of espresso, molasses and berries.

A creamy and full mouthfeel. Roasted coffee & imported chocolate flavors dominate the palate. Awesome smokey and roasted malts. Rasberry tartness interjects an espresso bitterness. There is a well represented hop bitterness with each sip, but the chocolate complexities take charge. A very slight alcohol warmth on the finish, but not as prominent as in years past.

What a beautifully well-balanced beer. One of the better imperial stouts I have ever had. Becomes more enjoyable as it warms up to room temperature.

A true gem and highly recommended.

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

Got lost in a grove of cocoa trees with this one on 12/19/2004. 16-oz. pour (when it should have been a 10-oz pour according to the board) at the Sunset Cantina.

Thick, wool blanket down of Silver Surfer head that receded and laced like a sputtering black hole. No moon blackest night hue, like the edge of the horizon on a winter night, in the dark, with eyes bolted shut. Chocolate and cocoa predominate on the mouth, with a Galactacus of sweet alcohol bite that shivers down to the metatarsals, practically splintering them. A bit further along, a prune and black licorice chutney gloms around and leaves a scorched earth policy down the tongue and into the throat; tonsils suffering from the plague. Almost a funky exoskeleton of malt that feels oddly wraith-like on the mouth. Generous, but lacking something.

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Photo of tweeder263
4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out black with dark tan 1 finger head. Super dark no light shining through this one.Smell is very typical of russian stouts and i cant quite pinpoint what it is but its a black licorice smell ,and i hate licorice, but in these its so sweet and subtle its very enjoyable.taste is licorice up front that changes over to a nice bittering hop that slowly fades into hints of coffee that linger nicely. This beer gets better as it warms.A nice stout that i plan to enjoy again.

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Photo of MuddyFeet
4.67/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought a six-pack of the '03-'04 batch over a year ago and put it in storage until this weekend. Such a good idea. The beer poured a midnight black with a thick, brown head that never went away. The lace clung to the glass extremely stubbornly the whole time while I was drinking it. As soon as I opened up the bottle aromas of chocolate and rich malts were wafting out. With the pour the aroma just got stronger. The hops are slightly bitter, but balanced with rich malts. Chocolate is (of course) ever so very present but coffee and molasses also come through on the tongue. I aged this a year, I can only imagine what it would've tasted in a cask. Do they have that? After two, I took notice that the alcohol is a lot higher than the flavor lets on. I limited myself to two, but because of how extremely rich this beer is I do not know if my palate cannot take a third without burning out.

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Photo of Higravity
4.48/5  rDev +8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Well the smell is a little weak or I should quit smoking. The body is as good as it gets just thick as hell with light carbonation. Of course this beer is some poetic saying of holy shit it is black, but it does get a tanish head that falls back quickly. I have had several in one sitting but this beer is better enjoyed in small doses. Now to the taste of this large black stout. Just as imagination tempts as roasted as burnt barely, almost like eating coffe beans but better. Truly a thing of beauty.

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Photo of jvajda
2.65/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Appearance: Black as night with no head.
Smell: Bitter and chocolatey notes.
Taste: It doesn't even taste like beer. It's like slightly carbonated milk chocolate. Not too bad overall, but it get's worse as it warms. This should be named "Brooklyn Old Chocolate Milk".
Mouthfeel: Creamy yet dull.
Drinkability: Half of one of these is more than enough.

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

Jet black. Held up to a lamp, I could detect no light coming through my glass. That beautiful dark brown head that looks so amazing in certain stouts and porters, and plenty of it. Roasted malts in the nose. Strong roasted coffee flavor with chocolate. Enough hop bitterness to balance. Harsh flavors, a little like sipping through an ash tray, although that makes it sound bad when it's really not. Still, it could definitely benefit from some aging. Full mouthfeel. Nice warming from the alcohol, which feels like it is evaporating in your mouth. A damn good beer, my favorite from Brooklyn Brewery, at least my favorite of their bottled beers.

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Photo of Globetrotter
4.55/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

This has been on my gottahave list for some time, so when I saw the bottle at the One Stop Liquors in Johnson City, I pounced upon it. Then I sent it via air freight to Moscow, where I finally consumated the courtship on 12/02/04. Label notes in several places that this is a limited bottling for winter '04-'05. Well, let me tell you that winter has more than started in Moscow, so I felt real good about popping this baby open.

Pours a deep dark brown under a 1/2 finger tan head that settles fairly quickly to film, leaving a touch of lace. Bit disappointed there. Not much in the nose at first, but as it warmed, chocolate and some mint (mint chocolate chip?) came through. Further warming yielded some nice roastiness later. The mouth is very prickly and fairly light - appropriate but not spectacular. Wonderful taste, though: chocolate is prominent, supplemented by caramel and a touch of roasted nuts and some plum. The finish features a strong flowery hop bitterness, enhanced by the chocolate but assertive on its own. The sweet and bitter walk hand in hand into the sunset of the aftertaste, leaving a very happy mouth. Very, very nice product.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
4.49/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Winter '03-'04 vintage:
Deep dark black with a sticky 1" tan head. Thick pour that lets a tiny brown sliver shine out from behind the light. Huge dark chocolate coffee nose with vibrant roasted maltiness. WOW...the nose is amazing and I can't stop smelling it. Make your nose happy and do the same.

First sip is a upfront with a huge roasted, burnt malt flavor, in which lies notes of dark chocolate, ground coffee and molasses. Flavors explode on your tongue and don't hold back. Nice and thick with slight warming acohol notes.

Mouthfeel is velvety creamy with a wonderful body and good carbonation. Drinkability is good as well...a super tasty brew that will warm you up on a cold night. Many thanks to kmpitz2 for the opportunity to try this brew.

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Photo of dippy
3.9/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2004-2005 bottle
Upon pouring this beauty I fell in love with the head. It looked like frothy chocolate milk. Nice dark beer makes my mouth water.

Smells sweet an chocolaty, fitting, given it's name.

Tastes like a dark dark chocolate. Slightly espresso. A little sweet from all the malt.

Very warming.

I think I would limit myself to maybe three or four of these a night. Not a session beer. This is too be enjoyed infront of the fire. It is my new seasonal drink.

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

at kuhnhenns thanks clarkv v from rate beer for bringing this in a trade with bieristgut. poured black with tan head. aroma, chocolate, roasted malts,coffee,nice hoppiness, cocoa. flavor,dark choclate,malts, licorice, hints of alcohol. a very enjoyable beer.

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

Picked up a case last year for around $28. I have about 6 left after just cracking this one open. The case is also from the Winter '03 - '04 batch, so this sucker's a year old.

Appearance - Opaque and full bodied with a thick brownish-white head that sticks to the glass pretty well.

Smell - Complex malt and dark chocolate. Worth getting right in the glass and taking some deep breaths. I think they use 6 kinds of malt, and it definitely shows.

Taste - Like the smell, the taste is even more complex, and I applaud Brooklyn for this. Burnt Burnt Burnt is the key. And of course the unsweetened dark chocolate. Sometimes I want to say the malts aren't balanced enough, but with this one at cellar temperature I think the balance is much more evident. Definitely don't have this cold.

Mouthfeel - Sometimes it can seem a bit thin, but it coats the mouth pretty well nonetheless.

Drinkability - I swear the ABV got higher since I had it last year. I wonder if letting it sit a year does anything, but it's probably my imagination. But since it IS a year old, I feel that's why it's more complex in its taste; aging this beer is definitely the thing to do. Don't make this a session beer as it warrants aging and sipping. Goes well with desserts in addition to being enjoyed by itself.

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Photo of blitz134
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured black as can be with no light coming around the edges either. Very little tan head formed on top, just enough to be able to call it something.

Smell was slightly sweet malts and lacked much of the typical toasted aroma I was expecting from a stout. A good dose of caramel sweetness with vanilla overtones. Good kick of vinous dark fruits as well. Strong alcohol nose as well.

The taste is pretty good. The first flavor to be picked up was the toasted flavor which the aroma lacked which quickly turned into a slight bit of chocolate, very pleasant. Towards the end I could pick up the alcohol, but being a winter warmer brew this was expected. Although it does come across a little harsh. The taste hung around for just long enough, coating like a thin oil...very reminiscant of the pour leading to a good thick mouthfeel.

Drinkability for this brew is good. The only thing bringing it down a bit is the harsh alcohol taste.

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Photo of Rastacouere
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Almost black in colour. Head is initially light brown, 1cm tall, nicely laced for an imperial stout. Strikingly malty from the start, proposing a rather complex roasty base on which builds up anise, chocolate and vegetal flavors. The roastiness at the end is a definition of stoutish balance though I didn’t enjoy the raw vegetal green hop aspects, almost citrusy. Oily mouthfeel has a fairly moderate carbonation level and lets show a good trace of alcohol toward the ending. I was a bit underwhelmed by the chocolate tones to this, while they are to be found, I expected more focus. As it is, this is a well crafted imperial stout that seems a bit basic, yet a good foundation to shape better beers after.

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Photo of bultrey
4.68/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Ohhhh baby. I've had this so many times before, but I finally decided to review it to give it just dues. This is a spectacular beer, and in my opinion, by far Mr. Oliver's greatest creation and the best stout I've ever had.
Pours a dark, dark night with a thin tan head that recedes to just the tiniest ring around the edge of the beer. The smell is at once burnt and vinous, almost as if a fine, sweet, dark chocolate were slightly burned, as it tends to smell at the end of a fondue pot.
The sweetness of this smacks you upside the head up front, with chcocolate-covered strawberries and other ripe red or dark fruits, but is quickly decimated by a wonderful charcoal bitterrness and the slightest hops character. But hops only serve to provide balance here...the story is the dark, roasted, chocolate malt. I also percieve a vanilla or molasses-type character. The thing I love about this stout is that it seems to combine all the finest characteristics of every style of stout: milk, sweet, dry, and imperial. The mouthfeel is exceptionally creamy and smooth, and the drinkability is dangerously high. The alcohol isn't apparent in the taste, but is apparent in the pleasant warmth that slowly engulfs your body. Must be served at cellar or room temperature. I will drink this all winter. I'd be curious to see if aging can make this any better. That would be an impressive feat.

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Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout from Brooklyn Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 2,779 ratings.