Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout - Brooklyn Brewery

Not Rated.
Brooklyn Black Chocolate StoutBrooklyn Black Chocolate Stout

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BA SCORE
93
outstanding

6,216 Ratings
THE BROS
91
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,216
Reviews: 2,745
rAvg: 4.15
pDev: 10.6%
Wants: 369
Gots: 1,211 | FT: 56
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: 6,216 | Reviews: 2,745
Photo of gruberbeer
4.58/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is impenetrable, midnight black. Beautiful. The head is thin and off-white to tan in color. It tastes quite bitter and ashy. The chocolate flavor resonates like a bitter dark cocoa, but it's not overwhelmingly chocolaty. It's very enjoyable to sip on a cold day. Smooth down the hatch, and the effect is almost like comfort food.

Photo of PangaeaBeerFood
3.85/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Went to the Brooklyn Brewery last night specifically to try this highly regarded beer. Unfortunately, the bartender told me they no longer serve Black Chocolate at Happy Hour because, at 10% ABV, it was making the place too roudy too fast. Lucky for me, the second bar I went to down the road, Barcade, had this on tap.

Poured into a 10 ounce wine glass, it looks as expected. Blacker than the blackest black, with a thin mocha colored head. Very syrupy that clings to the glass when swirled and slowly slips down the sides.

The smell is great. Reminds me of a really good Irish Coffee. The dark roasted aromas come through at first with the alcohol really making itself known at the end. Very very rich and decadent scent, which is exactly what I want (because it's goddamn freezing outside tonight). Very inticing.

The taste is not at all what I expected. Fairly low on the bitterness scale and much drier and less sugary than most 10+% ABV beers. It is very smooth and creamy on the palate initially. That being said, because there is less residual sugar and bitterness, the alcohol is VERY present at the finish. You can taste it and feel it warming the inside of your body as you swallow. It is so rich, with flavors of dark espresso and bitter chocolate that are so complex. I'm finding new things with every sip. Great on a cold winter night, but alcohol is way more present than other beers in it's class. As the beer warmed, by the end, the alcohol was a bit overwhelming. Very hot for the last 2 ounces or so. Too hot, they were difficult to finish.

The mouthfeel was great. Very thick with a winely mouthcoating effect and light carbonation, which, like the rest of the beer, gives you the impression that it's even stronger than it is. I love it though, and it is so appropriate for the cold weather.

Drinkability is average, at best. With the dominance of the alcohol in this beer, I could enjoy one 10 ounce glass, but wanted something less intense for my next beer.

Overall, this is a beer that shows INCREDIBLE potential. The flavors are so complex and rich with simultaneously less sweetness and less bitterness than other Imperial Stouts I've had, which gives you time to appreciate every nuance. That being said, the alcohol was just too dominating. Since this is being served at a bar down the block from the brewery in December, chances are this beer is as fresh as fresh could be. A beer this bold needs more time to let the booze integrate and mellow. I'm going to try to find myself a four-pack of this and cellar it. I'll have one every few months and see how the flavors develop. If I had to guess, 6 months down the road this will be fantastic, and by next christmas it will be heavenly, but now it's just too hot.

Photo of beerbum05
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Black colour, Thick Brown Head, no visible carbonation

Smell - Heavy malts, Chocolate

Taste - Chocolaty, smokey/roasted, Alcohol taste, thick beer

The only part that I really didn't like was the alcohol bite to it. If the alcohol taste would've been covered up more then it would be almost perfect.

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

I love this beer. Pours dark and smooth, with a head whose color reminds me of peanut butter. Smells darkly sweet with chocolate and faint licorice. Tastes similar to the smell, dark chocolate, nicely sweet, but with an unfortunately burnt bitter taste on the finish. There's some very slight licorice on the mouth too, but not cloying sweet licorice like Good and Plenty, more like fresh fennel. I highly recommend this beer and am hoping that the couple of bottles I put aside benefit from some aging.

Photo of tanousa
4.85/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Beautiful deep black with an delightful tan head.

S- Delicious chocolate, hints of coffe , licorice and strong alcohol.
T- Chocolate , roasted malts and hints of expresso.

M- smooth , nice carbonation.

D- Potent stout @ 10% alcohol content, a beer to drink slowly, great for desserts, a whole different experience enjoying this stout.

Photo of OldGrowler
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Taste: malty, bitter. Palate: smooth. It's all been said; except I taste roasty expresso and citrus too. You can't detect that 10% alcohol till you try to walk a straight line. Overall very satisfying. A top notch, although not world class beer like Old Growler.

Photo of beerboy9960
4.45/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle. Winter 2010/2011 vintage.

A- Pours a jet black with a thin light brown head.

S- The smell is of dark chocolate, cacao, and roasted malt.

T- The taste is big and malty upfront with a bitter roasted cacao aftertaste. Very thick with a bit of carbonation. You get a little bit of heat from the alcohol, but it is very well hidden for a 10% ABV beer.

O- Overall this was an excellent beer that I was glad to finally taste. I can't wait to try another bottle in a few months to see how it ages. Definitely worth trying if you have the chance!

Photo of HistoricalMan
3.63/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured down the center of a Left Hand balloon glass from a 12oz bottle. The bottle doesn't have a birth date but the label does note that it's a limited 2012-2013 bottling.

Appearance: A thick, jet black pour settles with one finger of creamy mocha-colored head. The head slowly recedes and leaves a halo creamy foam. Some lacing.

Smell: Roasted malt, powdered chocolate, a hint of milk, bitter espresso, and some added sweetness from the alcohol.

Taste: A taste that matches the flavor; roasted malt, powdered chocolate, plenty of sweetness from the alcohol, and a fairly bitter finish. In fact, the finish isn't very smooth at all... very astringent and prickly on the palate.

Mouth: Medium body with light carbonation. I'm actually surprised by the astringent finish given the low carbonation.

A fairly decent imperial stout. I imagine the finish mellows out with time and at 10.00% ABV it should age fairly well. Overall, not my favorite chocolate stout but definitely something I'd be interested in purchasing again in the future.

Photo of Jvbraun
1.8/5  rDev -56.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Very bitter taste like a strong acid taste.

Photo of kcarter71
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%

Love this it is my favorite choc flavored beer does not have that phony choc flavoring that some beers have.

Photo of Michael1974
4.45/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Personal favorite. Boozy. Strong. Taste great.

Photo of drifter29
4.4/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Just finished shoveling 2 feet of snow and settled in to sample 2 bottles (thanks Ned)

A - Pours almost black with a firm, tan head that lingers

S - Malty and earthy

T - Smooth and creamy up front with a strong malty finish

M - Great texture and body

D - Not a session beer but a great accent to a steak

Photo of ChowHound
3.03/5  rDev -27%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I love an imperial stout, and this one at first glance and whiff appeared to be a winner. Very dark with a creamy looking tannish head. Aroma of soft chocolates, dried beef, and roasted nuts had my mouth watering. Carbonation was too low in my estimation, and the flavor, while rich with chocolate malts, was too sweet and the texture too thin for an imperial stout. Also, a very strong taste of alcohol was always present, not something I like in a beer. Nasty aftertaste as well. For all its reputation, this brewery should be putting out better beers.

Photo of sleepingbear
4.31/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

With a calculated amount of agitated pouring this magnificent concoction of six varieties of chocolate- sports a full head that will fill your big Duvel glasses. A completely black opaque liquid wont let any light through the glass. Looks like black velvet bliss.

A nose of sweet caramels I often associate with Trappist ales and a distinct aroma of cacao.

A super smooth mouth feel is complimented with a superb balance of the supple texture with the perfect touch of dark chocolate bitterness in the finish. Brilliantly balanced.

Without even a mention for ‘The Brewmaster’s Table’; this beer is another reason why Garrett should run for president.

Photo of MaxxDaddy
3.57/5  rDev -14%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a beautiful jet black from the bottle with a somewhat thin, creamy tan head. I may have poured it too cold and the aroma was faint. Smelled like chocolate, coffee, and alcohol. Tasted like chocolate at first, then coffee and a hint of nuttiness. Finished chocolatey and alcoholic. The mouth feel was very nice, oily and slick. This was my first impy, so it was quite an experience. As it warmed up, the aroma was more pronounced, but toward the alcohol side. Some people seem to be of the opinion that sitting on this for a bit is best. I agree with that camp. See you next year Brooklyn BCS.

Photo of CrescentLake
3.54/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Beautiful pour, the head retention was immaculate and the color- wow- a tan-caramel/toffee hue. The body was a perfect consistency for a stout, slightly thick towards the end of the bottle, but an all around outstanding appearence. Not neccesarily down hill from there, but the pour definitely set my expectations pretty high. The smell was cacao and roasted coffee beans, but I could smell the alcohol...but in brooklyn's defense it is 10 and a half ABV. The taste was similar with some dark fruit notes, strong alcohol kick. Good mouthfeel, what you might expect from a solid imperial stout. Drinkability is average, you only need a couple of these bad boys to get you pretty tipsy, that is, if they don't put you to sleep first.
I did score a six pack from Whole Foods NYC on 24th St, on sale for $7.99 from it's typical $11.00... so with that in mind it's the best bang for your buck in NYC, if you can cash in on this deal.

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

A- Absolute Pitch black, brown head that disappears quickly. It pours out in viscous manner, like a watered down syrup.

S- A rich, vibrant malt smell with a dark chocolate nose melded in.

T- Rich is the only way to describe it. You want to serve this beer at a little colder than room temperature to get the chocolate notes on your palate. The malt comes through and when it hits the back of your tongue, the chocolate comes through. A fair amount of alcohol warmth, but it's not overpowering. It's just there to remind you that you're drinking a RIS.

M- For having as high of a abv that this beer has, it's remarkably light on the tongue. No carbonation felt on the tongue, but the flavor lingers for a long while.

D- You don't want to sit down and drink a whole 6-pack of this by yourself. It's a dessert beer. Perfect with vanilla ice cream or a light fruit sorbet.

A huge recommendation for this beer is to serve it at around room temperature to get the full chocolate experience!

Photo of mapofthedead
3.06/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Deep, coal pit black with a small tan head.

S: I got licorice,chocolate and coffee with a definite alcohol "bite" at the end.

T: Chocolate hits me in the face, nice and sweet with a more bitter after taste - but not unpleasant. There's some coffee kicking back there somewhere too...

M: Slick, lingering, not all that nice but okay.

D: This is a one a night beer, good, but just once.

Notes: 355 ml bottle poured into an Imperial Pint Glass. No BBE or freshness date was found on the bottle.

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

A: Pours dark, but pretty straight, and easy out of the bottle with a thick, high head that lingers for quite some time before it disappears smoothly.

S: Dark, cacao rich chocolate, possibly the kind spiced with flake salt, some coffee. A discreet warming smell of alcohol shines through.

T: Creamy, thick, mocha chocolate, hints of raspberries and red currants. Not quite the obvious salty taste as I would expect, but it's there alright. Warmth of alcohol shines through but in a very pleasant way.
The mouthfeel is nice thanks to the minimal amount of carbonation and bubbles, another sip is very hard to resist.

Overall impression then? Well, given the price, which was a bargain at 19.90 SEK this is nothing short of a fantastic beer. Truly regret that I didn't buy more than one.

Photo of Swuntly
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Winter 10-11 bottle.

A - Pours motor oil black, with absolutely no light penetration at all. A small mocha head forms, but dies out quickly. No lacing.

S - Dark, bittersweet chocolate, a hint of oak, licorice, a touch of alcohol.

T - Some roasted malt up front, with a slight hop bitterness. The huge chocolate shows up mid-palate and just lingers and lingers and lingers... Lots of dark chocolate with just a hint of marshmallow creme. A very delicious tasting beer.

M - Possibly a tad over carbed, but the chocolate makes it so it doesn't even matter.

O - A well done beer, which does exactly what it sets out to do.

Photo of schepelz
3.55/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle poured into snifter

A - Almost jet black. Aggressive pour that led to one finger tannish head

S - Sweet roasted malts, dark bitter chocolate, and some dark fruit/fig notes

T - Very sweet. Roasted malts, coffee, dark fruits. Lots of chocolate flavor the further I get into the glass. Getting a lot of the dark fruit flavors in this one. Figs, plums, raisins, etc. Very sweet but with a dry bitter finish

M - Medium body, much higher carbonation than I expected.

O - Overall a decent RIS.Will definitely enjoy as the months grow colder outside

Photo of Mateer
4.73/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Presentation: From a 12 oz long neck from a 4 pack with date. Says the 2014-2015 season.

Appearance: Like it says...black. I can't even see through it when I hold it up to a light. Maybe a little brown. Superb lacing that remains in it's place. Moderate carbonation is present but it's hard to see because of the black.

Smell: Coffee and yeast, fresh bread like smell.

Taste: Dark robust coffee, dark bitter chocolate, burnt malt undertones, some sweetness (that is thankfully fleeting), and then hops are present towards the end to complement the coffee and dark chocolate.

Overall: This is one of my favorite stouts. High ABV with a prefect pairing of chocolate and coffee. A lot of times these double stouts or high ABV stouts have a sickly sweet taste and aftertaste that prevails. This one avoids that brewing mistake and gives you what you want from a stout...something to get through the frigid cold of winter. I highly recommend this brew!

Photo of dcajero
4.63/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A = Deep black with tobacco red highlights. Quarter inch head formed, thick and lingering.

S = Coffee, alcohol and maybe blackberries.

T = Coffee, cherries and licorice. Aftertaste is stronger licorice and sweetness builds.

M = Good body, almost an oily quality. Carbonation is not too strong.

D = Great feet up, end of the day brew. I'll be back for more.

Photo of drouss48
4.34/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased a few 12oz bottles from Bert. Poured into a pint glass.

A: Gorgeous 1.5 finger dark tan head. Beautiful lacing throughout.

S: Not over powering in the least, as with most stouts. Mild bittersweet chocolate, toasted malts were present.

M: My favorite part of drinking this beer. Smooth, full bodied, almost creamy. Enjoyed every sip.

T: At the front of your tongue you get the malts, right away. There were several layers of malts all working together wonderfully. In the middle to you get the slight hint of alcohol, just to let you know its there. The back of the mouth and aftertaste is of chocolate, toffee...but not too sweet. Perfectly balanced.

There is no way I would have ever guessed this was a 10+% beer. The smoothness/taste of this beer could be very, very dangerous...in a good way!

Photo of VikingBeer
4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This is a review transcribed from the notebook I thought I lost last year and just found, which gave me the push to start reviewing again. 12-oz bottle of the '08-09 vintage, kept in the fridge for about a month and poured into my Duvel tulip.

A: 2-stage pour yields 1" dark-tan head, receding to 1/2" that stays in the glass and leaves thick lacing. Beer is black as hell and almost totally opaque.

S: A deep sniff opens with a blast of bitter/burnt chocolate malt, boozy alcohol, and a touch of STRONG Turkish coffee. The aroma lingers and evolves, with touches of rum, port, and dark cherries (chocolate-covered, perhaps?).

T: First sip brings a big hit of bittersweet chocolate and burnt malt upfront leading to boozy navy-rum flavors in the middle, with a sharp whiff of fusels going up my nose. On the back of my tongue comes the sweetness, with a slight ruby-port flavor and a hint of more cherries. Coffee notes prevail throughout, akin to the darkest of espresso beans covered with 85% chocolate. Aftertaste displays yet more complexity, with hints of dark-fruit Jelly Beans (whatever the hell those purple ones are). Hops appear mainly as a slight spiciness in the aftertaste, with hints of cinnamon, clove, and allspice. Subsequent sips seem to reveal a greater sweetness under all the sharp, bitter burnt-chocolate flavors.

M: Mouthfeel is excellent; smooth and slightly viscous, with just the right hint of carbonation.

D: Definitely a bit raw, especially compared to an aged '07-08 I had a few weeks ago (I reviewed it, but I lost the damn notes). Though I would only drink one of this fresh batch in a sitting, BBCS is still dangerously smooth-bodied and warming.

Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout from Brooklyn Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 6,216 ratings.