Hakim Stout - Harar Beer Factory

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Hakim StoutHakim Stout

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BA SCORE
75
okay

53 Reviews
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Reviews: 53
Hads: 83
rAvg: 3.2
pDev: 18.75%
Wants: 8
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Harar Beer Factory
Ethiopia

Style | ABV
Foreign / Export Stout |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: jreitman on 07-18-2003

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 53 | Hads: 83
Photo of ChrisBowers
4.67/5  rDev +45.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The first thing you think is "Ethiopian Beer? Yeah Right." But then you try it. First off, this beer has more in common with a Belgian Brown or a Double Bock than a stout, but I assume the word "stout" has come to encompass all darker than average beers in the former colonies. This is quite simply an exceptional beer. It has an excellent mouthfeel and whatever kind of exotic spices are put into this are very noticable, but not in an overbearing way. Has notes of roasted coffee and plums. The bottle with the funky label is also a plus for the collectors in the house. (572 characters)

Photo of ktrillionaire
4.07/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This may be a bit of a style-bender, but it is quite good. Enjoyed at the best restaurant in Tampa: Queen of Sheba Ethiopian.

A - It pours a mahogany hue, slightly translucent, with good tan head; very light appearance for the style, doubtless, but it looks tidy nonetheless.

S - There are some elements typical of FES; it is roasty and dark fruity with a UK ale yeast sensibility. Specifically, it smells honey-ish and a bit like raisinets.

T - The brew showcases a sweet malt flavor and accentuates it with nuances of roast and burnt sugars, and perhaps a faintly peaty sweet note; the resultant flavor is somewhat like a theoretical Scottish Export Stout.

M - Nice feel; fairly close to the style norm despite the appearance.

O - I think this tastes very good. Also, though I've not been to Ethiopia, I picture it even hotter than Florida; this is just about as stout as a brew need be for unfortunately hot locales. (924 characters)

Photo of DannelB
4.05/5  rDev +26.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm currently sitting in a small restaurant in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. After living here for two years this is my favorite and most elusive local beer. For some reason hardly any restaurants carry it. But a friend turned me on to this restaurant that has it on tap. Awesome!

Appearance: Dark brown beer with thick, creamy lightbrown head. Lots of bubbles making their way up the glass

Smell: Roasty. Notes of toast, raisins, chocolate, light roasted coffee and figs.

Taste: Definitely taste lots of roastiness. Beyond that, there is a taste of raisins and a nice bright yeast.

Mouthfeel: The carbonation is noticable, but actually is nice and refreshing. Feels a bit thin for a stout though.

Overall: Definitely a pretty good beer. Not the best I've ever had, but certainly not the worst. It's really nice for the climate in Ethiopia. It gives the taste of a stout without the heaviness. On draft is much better than in the bottle. I'll be looking into getting a tap in my house. Or opening up a restaurant where this is served on tap (and where I can be ALL the time). I like this beer a lot and will definitely be coming often to grab a draft (1,150 characters)

Photo of ThreePistols
4/5  rDev +25%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark reddish brown color with a decent off-white head. Roasted coffee and raisin aroma. Full bodied coffee taste with raisins and spicy flavors that lingered on the tongue. The flavors are assertive but not too heavy on the palate. A very pleasant roasted aftertaste. Smooth and complex. (287 characters)

Photo of Prufrock
3.99/5  rDev +24.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

330cc bottle into a pilsner.

deep brown with an inch of off-white head. head retains well and leaves plenty of lace.

nice blend of sweet aromas. honey, caramel, raisins, and a touch of chocolate. some roasted malts as well.

sweet honey and chocolate in the taste as well, with some roasted malt bitterness. fairly sweet but not cloying and very pleasantly drinkable. fairly light mouthfeel for a stout, but it's a pretty good beer that i'd love to try again. (467 characters)

Photo of gnbird
3.9/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Picked some up in Little Ethiopia in Los Angeles. I spotted all kinds of Ethiopian beers and picked up this one from Harrar and a lager to try. This is more of a brown ale in my opinion, pours with a very small head that dissipates immediately. Color was dark brown, no murkiness. Tastes very coffee like with a strong malt flavor, high carbonation with a pleasant yeasty aftertaste . It's a very tasty beer and I will buy some more if I'm ever down there again. (462 characters)

Photo of Offa
3.85/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a nice, mellow, yet tasty beer.

It is dark red brown, faintly hazy, with a small tan head that soon dissipates to a foamy ring.

The aroma is light, yeasty, malty dough with stewed fruit and wine.

The taste is stronger and more complex, mostly sweet and malty with a faint sour quality, a little caramel, stewed fruit, musky wine, a hint of chocolate. (362 characters)

Photo of clickpush
3.8/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pour: 33cl bottle to pint glass. Lays out a 1.5 finger tan head over a black bodied beer. The head stuck around for a while, making this beer look very inviting. Left nice lacings behind for me to admire.

Nose: Chocolate and a roasting aroma are very strong. Some caramel and alcohol are obvious, and deeper the malts come out with some more chocolate and hints of grapefruit.

Mouth: Didn't quite live up to my expectations: a bit plastic tasting and sour, but not in a horrible way. The chocolate is extremely strong and delicious with a very unique after taste, like burnt chocolate. The flavor is a bit too sour and has some processed candy like qualities that aren't too favorable. My girlfriend screamed "That's the worst beer I've ever tasted!!"... but I disagree. It's not great tasting, but has some interesting flavors that I liked. Thorough carbonation as well. (877 characters)

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.72/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Black Raven pint glass. Pours a dark mahogany amber, thin medium brown head that dissipates to a film and ring around the glass, short lived lacing. Nice aroma of caramel malt with light roasted malt and dark dried fruit. Flavor follows, mild sweet malt with a hint of roastiness, dried fruit. Finishes with pleasant light malt and molasses. A somewhat subdued stout redeemed by a quite pleasant finish. It leans in the direction of a malty bock, but is close enough to an export stout. Medium bodied. I enjoyed this for a low ABV, light stout. (558 characters)

Photo of therica
3.65/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A= very nice medium coffee-brown, not dark like a Guinness at all. Very nice tan head. Somewhat cloudy.

S= interesting malts, caramel, dark fruits.

T= slightly thick, slightly sweet with dark fruits, nice malts, modest hops.

M= slightly out of balance in the finish, with a slight flatness mixed with dark fruits.

O= overall a definite to try.

I bought this in Frederick MD at the Tajitu Ethiopian restaurant, and the owner told me that Heineken is allegedly trying to buy either this beer or the brewery-- interesting if it happens. Personally, I prefer the Harar Lager over this beer but both are good candidates for a much wider beer audience. (651 characters)

Photo of BeerDocT
3.56/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Does this have the fabled aroma hop Gesho Kitel in it? I have no idea, but I was...well, read on.

Appearance 3.5: Poured out a deep, dark brown. Almost no head. OK lacing.

Smell 3.75: Great bouquet on this beer. Toasted grains, sweet barley malt and a pleasant scent of dried fruits: raisins, plums, figs.

Taste 3.5: Front is slightly sweet with a big hit of malt and this fades quickly into the Middle where a nice alkaline hoppiness hits the palate. Finish is a big jumble of tastes: Malt, hops, but of all types of different levels. This is balanced out by a very nice dryness that sweeps in and cleans everything out for the Aftertaste, where the malt comes back along with a strangely pleasing acetone flavor.

Mouthfeel 3.5: A bit too bubbly, but certainly not out of character for the style.

Overall 3.5: A very good stout with flashes of brilliance. I imagine this brew would be good with food, but would also be good as a sessioner. I taste none of its slightly higher than usual ABV. Just a pleasant stout from an unusual place for we in the West to think of beer, but this beer is certainly worth a look. A worthy product of the ancient city of Harar. (1,167 characters)

Photo of woemad
3.55/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz. stubbie bought at Jim's Homebrew in Spokane. According to the label, this has an abv of 5.5%. I bought this purely for the novelty of drinking something from Ethiopia. My expectations were low due to the rather weathered appearance of the bottle, and because one has to wonder about beer from predominantly Muslim nations. When many in the culture are at best tolerant of alcohol, you have to question how good the beer is. Well, while this is definitely not the best stout I've had, its really not bad at all. It's really more like a brown ale with a slightly increased amount of hoppiness.
It poured a dark brown color, with a bit of rubiness at the edges when held to the right. Big tan head, which was gone in about 2 minutes. Smell was of a mild roasty maltiness, with caramel and a floral hoppiness. The taste is predominantly caramel, with a slight hoppiness. The mouthfeel is thin for a stout. This is very drinkable, a better session beer than most beers labeled stout. (986 characters)

Photo of Cyberkedi
3.55/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Aroma is smoky and malty, typical for a stout and appealing. I didn't get a good look at the color, but it appears to be the typical opaque sable. Flavor is smoky with a hint of coffee, not as complex as most stouts I have tried but still enjoyable. Texture is firm-bodied and fizzy, leaving a smoky tingle. Think no good beer comes out of Africa? Guess again! (360 characters)

Photo of IronLover
3.52/5  rDev +10%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer was more along the lines of a bock opposed to a stout. There was no sign of dark roasted malts in my opinion. It wasn't bad, but if you're looking for a stout, this isn't one.

Raisin colored brown with hints of dark red. poured with a short beige foam that reduced to a wispy cap with a thick ring around the glass. Sweet raisin and fig aromas with dark grains in the background. On the heavier side of medium bodied with a syrupy feel brought on by the rich carbonation. Dark fruit flavors from beginning to end, highlighted by fig and raisins. Finishes with a fruity, floral hop bitterness. (603 characters)

Photo of Onibubba
3.52/5  rDev +10%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Had this at an Ethiopian restaurant in SF. Small bottle poured into a water glass. Dark brown, no head, no lacing, not too dark either. Smelled of roasty malts, more along the lines of a porter than a stout. Tasty. Not much if any alcohol present. Decent mouthfeel, not too remarkable in any way. Some caramel, some raosty malts, but not overly sweet. All in all it was very drinkable, complemented the meal well, and I had another. (432 characters)

Photo of BigBry
3.5/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Stubby, brown bottle, label as pictured above. No bottling date.
Cola colored liquid, dark brown when held to the light (rather than reddish of other dark beers). Thick tan head, not bad retention, good carbonation.
The smell had some roasted malt and was a bit yeasty. Also got some caramel and molasses.
Taste and mouthfeel were a bit thin. Some stout flavors, but were a bit weak overall. Roasted malt, a bit coffee-like, licorice.
Not as rich and flavorful as some other stouts, (especially an RIS). However, if it were scorching hot out, this probably be quite refeshing and smooth, lighter and easy to drink. (614 characters)

Photo of chinchill
3.47/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a murky brown-mahogany hue, with a thin and short-lived tan head; very light color for the style. Not the only departure from style, it turns out.

S: nice aroma of roasted malt, but mainly medium roast, with little of the dark malt aroma expected in a true stout. Nor is there any chocolate or coffee. Nicely fruity with a hints of yeast and honey.

T: Plenty of medium roasted sweet malt flavor, with faint hints of smoke and peat (think Scottish Ale) and more than a hint of dark fruit. A fine, rich aftertaste lingers on and on. [4, were it not for the departure from style]

M - Full body with good medium-low carbonation. Feel is close to the style norm despite the appearance.

O - A nice, unique beer worthy of a recommendation; just don't expect a true stout. Even though the bottle was allowed to warm for 10-15 minutes before opening, the beer improved a bit with additional warming.

(revised with bottle in April 2014) (942 characters)

Photo of gbontrag
3.45/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is not an imperial stout.
pours like thin coffee. You can see all through the edges. Cola colored. Short head. Indistinct, didn't stay around much.
stubby little bottle is cool.
pretty simple nose; burnt malts, caramel malts.
It runs a little smokey, and pleasantly bittersweet. A little fruity, a bit of grass comes through. This is thin, but very drinkable. Exceedingly delicious with Ethiopian foods. Doesn't overpower any of the delicately spiced legumes, but stands up to the chiles, and the wonderful collard greens. Yeah, it's kinda thin, and not very complicated, but it sure goes down easily. It's totally enjoyable with the meal. (648 characters)

Photo of slitherySOB
3.42/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Seems a little light in colour for an imperial stout. Poured more brownish/orange than dark. Small foam head on top. Whisps of lace on the glass. Smelled very sweet. Not cloyingly sweet, legitimate sweet. Malts, dark fruits like raisins and plums, coffee and chocolate beans. Heavy coffee taste and raisin taste. Sort of bittersweet. The malt and raisins add a sweet taste, while the coffee makes it bitter. Pretty good, actually. Flows down the throat nice and smoothly. An above par beer, and a good imperial stout. (517 characters)

Photo of henrysunset
3.4/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

if by stout, they mean dark amber, then yes, that's what this looks like. It isn't very dark, but it pours with a very impressive head of fine tan bubbles.

Smell isn't terribly strong either, mark malts, a little bit of hoppy qualities, and a citrusy almost lambic quality.

Taste is alright. Again, not dark enough to my palate to warrant a stout label, but pleasent enough. Very little flavor up front, but it leaves behind a pleasent dark flavour. Grain and again a small amount of a citrusy flavor.


A little thin of body, but very drinkable. I guess it is hot in ethiopia, and this would be a tasty beer for the climate. While a different style, it has a similar depth as a negro modelo; dark, but drinkable on a sunny day. (737 characters)

Photo of drabmuh
3.39/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a goblet. I had no idea what to expect from this beer but I didn't expect this.

Beer poured brown and mostly clear with a slight haze to it....ummmm stout right?

The aroma was mostly malty, nutty, with a slight, mild roast.

The taste was a lot like an English brown, it tasted fine but this surely isn't a stout.

I had never had an Ethiopian beer or a Foreign / Export stout, but this totally isn't a stout. Overall the beer was drinkable and overall unoffensive. Everything was subdued, there was a roast flavor but its was an afterthought. (571 characters)

Photo of RoyalT
3.38/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance – Dark, ruby brown in color with a huge, tanned, foaming head that left tons of lacing as it went down.

Smell – Roasted malts drenched in hot chocolate syrup. I could pour this over some vanilla ice cream. There’s also a hint of coffee in there as well.

Taste – This Stout loses something at the taste. It still has the chocolate syrup but it picks up an off flavor that I can’t describe. The malts are burnt to a crisp.

Mouthfeel – Way too light for an Imp Stout. This isn’t even medium-bodied. The sharp, relentless bitterness found in the drink and the lingering aftertaste saves this mouthfeel, though.

Drinkability – Not bad, but won’t buy again. It is very interesting though that it comes from Ethiopia. I would have predicted much worse. (777 characters)

Photo of goschool
3.36/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I got a couple bottles of this stuff at Merkato in Little Ethiopia. As practically every reviewer has pointed out, there's no way in hell this is a Russian Imperial Stout (no offense to the BA who entered this, but seriously, wtf?). If the label didn't say stout, I think this would come off as a brown porter.

This one pours dark red to brown with a large tan head that leaves just a smidge of lacing. The nose is chocolaty and fruity with sherry aromas. Roasted malts and chocolate get a rude visit from overly-sweet lactose. This lactose flavor works better in more robust stouts. Think Samuel Smith's Nut Brown meets Mackeson XXX. As this beer warms up the lactose taste goes away. It's a shame how much this beer's rating has suffered from it being miss-categorized as an RIS. This is a below average robust stout, but it's a nice brown porter. (853 characters)

Photo of shand
3.34/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured from a 11.2oz bottle into a mug.

Well, saw this on the shelf and decided if nothing else, it'll be interesting. Probably my only chance to have an Ethiopian beer anyway, as I don't think this will be a regular character on my beer shop's shelves. Pours a muddy brown color crested with a large head that quickly fades away, leaving little lacing in it's wake. The aroma is nice, sweet malts and a bit of cocoa. The taste is also fairly good, the flavor profile on this actually comes quite close to a full ABV FES. It's weaker (taste and alcohol-wise) than other FESes, but there's a nice robust roastiness, cocoa notes, and a strong coffee taste. The only downside is the aftertaste. It begins to get a little metallic, then just completely peters out. As it warms, it tastes worse. This is the rare stout that you want to drink cold!

The mouthfeel is highly-carbonated and thin, a thicker mouthfeel would make this brew much more enjoyable. The drinkability is alright, the metallic end starts to get a bit grating after a while though. Overall, this was an interesting beer and a nice opportunity to try something different. (1,136 characters)

Photo of Sammy
3.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

They say that Euthopia brews beer..some colour and head and sourness. A stout? Light mouthfeel, particularly for this style. Some Hershey chocolate syrup carmel malts and coffee roast for flavour. Quaffable. Radekfest 05 sample 34, I think run in by Oakes. (256 characters)

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Hakim Stout from Harar Beer Factory
75 out of 100 based on 53 ratings.