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Scarface Imperial Stout - Speakeasy Ales & Lagers

Not Rated.
Scarface Imperial StoutScarface Imperial Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

195 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 195
Reviews: 64
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 10.94%
Wants: 14
Gots: 25 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Speakeasy Ales & Lagers visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: MisterClean on 02-19-2010

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 195 | Reviews: 64
Reviews by nycwinter:
More User Reviews:
Photo of Billolick
4.05/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Growler filled at DeCicco's in Ardsley, NY. Pours nice and black under a super dark mocha head, that stays and stays, frothy, and dense. Leaves short lived sheeting, then globby strands of thick lace. Nose of dark malts, coffee, and sugary toffee. Full flavor stout, more sweet and dark roasty notes. Coffee, mocha milkshake with hints of whiskey and wood. Super smooth and velvety on the tongue, without going over the top and taking away from drinkability. Enjoyable, nicely crafted and tasty I.S. Nice offering from Speakeasy Ales.

Photo of Mora2000
4.2/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to thirdeye11 for sharing this beer. This was a 22 ounce handbottle filled at Bierkraft in New York.

The beer pours a dark brown color with a khaki head. The aroma is dark chocolate and roasted malt. The flavor is more of the same with coffee, chocolate and roasted malt. Thick mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of r0nyn
4.27/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a growler into my DFH snifter. Split with fellow BA infi.

Pours a dark, dark mixture that's completely opaque. Frothy tan head that leaves a ton of sticky, spotty lacing. Looks like it has pretty good viscosity. Smell is full of roasted malts, with quite a bit of decadent coffee, dark chocolate and barley. Hoppiness is pretty detectable at the start, but quickly subsides as the beer warms and the sweeter scents become more prevalent. Interesting and complex.

Say hello to my little friend(s)! Coffee leads things off, more sweet than bitter, but with both qualities making themselves known. Chocolate sweetness follows through, with toffee nuances. As the brew warms, there's a bit of alcohol heat, but it's subdued and unobtrusive. Roasted malts and barley round out the taste, with a mildly astringent aftertaste. Mouthfeel is quite creamy and smooth. I've definitely had heavier stouts, but this one seems to balance the body and the smoothness very well. Minimal carbonation with a lightly drying finish. Very pleasant.

Drinkability is quite good. Pleasing, nuanced taste, enticing smell and a lush mouthfeel make Scarface Stout one to be reckoned with. I would definitely revisit this. Quality brewing from Speakeasy. Thanks to the guys and gals at New Beer Distributors in NYC for making my first growler experience a great one!

Photo of RBassSFHOPit2ME
2.83/5  rDev -28%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

The label clearly stated "Brewed in Small Batches." You'd imagine this would be a good thing right? Speakeasy does a very good "Hunter's Point" porter *OR* Payback Porter so I thought I'd give Scarface a stab...

A - Good black appearance in the 12oz Tulip I poured it in, decent head and head retention. Nothing wrong here.

S - Above average, sweet malts, a bit of coco and vanilla. Upon a semi aggressive swirl you get a creamy milky smell as if I'd almost swear lactose was added to this brew. Roast comes out as well. Inviting...I've never had this beer before so I'm dying now to dive in.

T - OK. Here's where it all goes wrong. I do get the flavors I mentioned above in the smell BUT it's rough around the edges, or rather rounded out in the middle and finish with a char - cigarette smokiness that wont go away.

M - Get rid of that smoke. Ruined the beer for me...otherwise everything else was fine.

O - Drainpoured the last 10oz or so. At $5.99, not a bad price for a bomber of a Imperial anything...but money would have been better spend adding 2 more dollars and picking up a 4-pack of Green Flash Double Stout or Old Raspy.

Sorry Speakeasy for the rough review as I do LOVE your Firkin' Fridayz!

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.72/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours near black (only the faintest of deep chocolate browns can be detected when held to light) with a thick, cocoa powder colored 3 finger head. Good retention, resulting in a thin but consistent layer across the surface. Good lacing with nice stick.

Smell - Cocoa chocolate aroma, with subtle notes of bitter dark chocolate. Hints of earth.

Taste - More roasty than the nose leads to believe. Deep, bitter roasted malt with dark and baker's chocolate overtones. Light milk chocolate sits beneath. Finishes with a coffee ground bitterness and grapefruit pith.

Mouthfeel - Medium to full body with moderate carbonation. A bit lighter than your average imperial stout. Goes down well enough.

Overall - Decent, but not an entirely impressive Impy stout. Not as deep, thick, layered and complex as I like in this style. Unless it were on sale, I probably wouldn't give this another go, if only because there are quite a few amazing Impys in this price range; Drakonic and Old Viscosity come to mind.

Photo of Sammy
3.88/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on tap at The Ginger Man NYC. Rpasty aroma. This is black with three-eighths inch of head, and leaves lots of lace tral down the glass. It has a thick mouthfeel and is smooth. Licorice, hoppy, a bit astringent, though good drinkability. Very good but not exceptional for the style.

Photo of socon67
4.52/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark black color with a rich high brown cola colored foam. Retention is good and lively carbonation settles fast.

S - Strong scent of roasted malt and toffee. This is a very aromatic stout that gained strength as it warmed.

T - "Say hello to my little friend". This packs a nice punch of rich malty flavor, tastes of english toffee and fudge. Maybe the notro did the trick but this seemed incredibly complex.

M - Insanely drinkable. Had to nurse this to really enjoy it. I could of eaily had a second or third glass. For such a rich stout it was very drinkable and masked that ABV.

O - Didn't expect to love this as much. I will get a bottle of this to see if it holds up the same.

Photo of 20ozmonkey
3.53/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Got this bottle at work the other day. Thinking about getting more to cellar it, but I’m gonna review it first.

Pours completely black with a thick, dark brown head.

I’m smelling some coffee notes from afar before I even got my nose to the glass. Bittersweet chocolate is the primary aroma on this here Scarface. I feel like I’m smelling chocolate cake batter while smelling this. (It’s pretty awesome.)

I’m surprised at first by how balanced this seems out the gate for an imperial stout. It doesn’t have a super strong bitter finish and instead has a slight bitter chocolate finish. Up front there is a strong blast of sweetness that is a bit jarring at first.

Heavy bodied with slight carbonation.

I’ve always thought Speakeasy was best when they were making darker ales. Their Sutro Stout and Payback Porter are probably my favorite beers from them. I’ll get a few more bottles of this to store away for a while and see if the upfront sweetness will fade over time.

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.39/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

650 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Black with a bit of transparency. Medium collar.

Smell - Chocolate. Some grassy hops. Caramel.

Taste - Caramel malt. Some coffee roasted malt. A little hoppy here as well. Some grapefruit.

Mouthfeel - Medium heavy body. Medium carbonation.

Overall - Run of the mill imperial stout. A hoppy one though.

Photo of claaark13
3.37/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours black with a thick light-tan head. Sticks alright to the side of the glass.

S - Roasted malts are mixed well with hops. Then, there is some sort of almost fresh paint aroma. Hmmm...confusing. Not like an alcohol paint, but just a mild aroma that comes from the malts/hops.

T - Very, very similar to the aroma. Roasted malts, hops, then roasted malts again on the finish. The flavor I'm comparing to paint is in the middle before the malts take over again. Slight sweetness on the finish, as well as some cocoa notes.

M - Somewhere in the medium range.

O - Good everyday RIS in my opinion. The aroma is certainly off, but the flavors are good enough to make me buy a round or two at a bar. I just can't get past the odd paint aroma. It isn't like BA Black Sun, but it is in that direction.

Photo of hoppymcgee
3.69/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a growler of this at Whole Foods Bowery Beer Room in Manhattan, NY.

A: The best feature of this beer. Black with a light tan head that doesn't want to go away.

S: Pretty basic. Charred wood and some cocoa nibs. Smells like a stout.

T: 70% cacao, some nuttiness, earthiness, and unfortunately a metallic undertone. Luckily there is a little oak presence to mellow it out and some hoppiness to give it a bitter touch.

M: Pretty light for this big of a stout. I thought this was rather dry too.

D: Drinks more like a regular stout - very easygoing and not filling at all. This would be the best feature of this beer, but it doesn't beg to be had anymore.

Overall, a decent (Imperial?) stout but I like their Midnight Run Black IPA much better.

Photo of bugaboo416
4.2/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: nice head that disappeared pretty quickly, strong legs on my glass, pitch black body

S: coffee, roasty, a bit of alcohol

T: lightly sweet, then a bit of spicy vanilla, then roasted flavors, then the alcohol appears and burns nicely going down your throat. There's a sharp bitterness and roasted flavor that lingers in your mouth and wont go away.

M: medium to high body, it definitely has some heft to it.

O: A very nice sipping imperial stout, It would be perfect if they could blend the alcohol into the other flavors but worth getting a few bottles, maybe try storing a few for 1/2-1 year to see if it blends a bit more. A small 10-12 oz is plenty because this is a big beer.

Photo of Greywulfken
4.33/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I don't even know what to do, I've been trying so many really good imperial stouts (American and Russian) lately. Every time I think I get it, there's another stout knocking at the door, saying: hey, "drink me, I'm awesome"

So, first off, hats off to brewers around the world for bringing back beer. Thank God.

I find that the usual diff between a Russian IS and and America Double/IS is the sweetness. AD/IS tend to be a little sweeter and boozier - just my impression - whereas a(n) RIS is a little mellower and less sweet.

A: pitch f'in' black, 'natch, with a thick head that simmers into a rim with lots of lace left behind

S: coffee notes, yes, but mostly malt (roasty toasty)

T: this is the most Russian tasting American Double I've tried as far as my palate can recall - mellow, not too sweet, tender roasted malts and touches of espresso and cocoa, but mostly that rich roasted malt and mild sweetness

M: good body, no bitterness at all, slight tongue-coating (as it should); no astringency or alcohol noted at all

O: wow - these guys first impressed me with their imperial red, Betrayal, and this brew cements them as genius-level brewers. Thank you so much, Speakeasy, and Mike, at my distributor, who's been telling me to get this.

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.89/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a Maudite snifter. Pours pitch black with a healthy two finger light brown head with great retention and lots of lacing. Aroma of dark and toasted malt, chocolate and vanilla. Flavor follows, with toasted and lightly charred malt, chocolate, light vanilla and coffee. Finishes a bit thin until a good charred bitterness develops leaving a lingering hop and burnt coffee flavor. Medium bodied with a hint of creaminess. A full flavored American style imperial stout that is not quite balanced, allowing the high ABV to show through a bit; but redeems itself somewhat in the finish

Photo of metter98
3.41/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a thin tan head that left a thick coating of lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: There are moderately strong aromas of alcohol in the nose.
T: The taste has flavors of dark roasted malts along with notes of alcohol and chocolate and hints of licorice.
M: It feels medium-bodied and a bit smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. There is a little burn from the alcohol in the finish.
O: The alcohol in this beer is too prominent in the smell and to a lesser degree in the taste. As such, it’s a slow sipper.

Photo of vacax
3.9/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ. Poured pitch black with around a centimeter of dark brown head that had some fair retention and comparably nice lacing. Aroma is pungent and loaded with roasted coffee beans, malt, oak, and vanilla. Maybe a bit overdone on the roast. The flavor is packed with roast, dark malts, a bit astringent actually, lots of oak and oaky bitterness, vanilla, and cookie. Finish has a touch of floral hops along with lots of roast and cookie. Full bodied, lightly slick with a slight chewiness. I liked this beer, it was perhaps a bit much on the roasted elements, but the overall flavor was nice.

Photo of DrDemento456
3.88/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Snagged a bottle for 8 bucks from halftime beverage.com. Considering my local place charges 15 I believe I got one hell of a deal. Into a regular pint glass.

A -Deep dense blackness that poured very thick (the way I like it) and a 1/2 inch of deep mocha head atop of this beast is an excellent look for a stout.
S - Cold coffee, sweet and chocolate goodness with a sweet chocolate malt edge, some anise and tobacco and a faint bit of hops are what I am smelling.
T - Wow is this roasty and chock full of dark cocoa. Like 70% strong dark cocoa which is nice I do like the bittering sting of chocolate somewhat. Finish is rather hoppy with sweet citrus hops and there seems to be some coffee notes coming out with some vanilla tones. Kind of acidic somewhat.
M - Not as thick as I wanted more medium bodied and somewhat watery. Not bad just not great.

Overall I guess its just the name and the style that allures me try this. I have had far worse imperial stout but again I have also had more balanced, more bodied stouts. This one is just slightly above average. Final thought at least this beer isn't loaded with anise I hate that crap

Photo of colforbin73
4.37/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

why only 4 on the overall? because i just had it a second ago for the first time and i am not ready to push it over the top.

ROAST BOMB

this beer is a rich chocoaltey roasted biscuit cream of a beer. speakeasy outdid them selves on this.

bitter hops confound the back end of your palate. after a complex roasted malt attack the piney hop burn on the back sets in slowly -- the abv rears its' head at the very end but darn, this is WAY better than i expected.

this is an extremely drinkable imperial stout. it just hit the shelves, BUY.

Photo of atr2605
3.83/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-pours back with a frothy tan head with excellent retention
S-coffee, rich chocolate, carmelized sugar
T-chocolate and sugar followed by roasted coffee and finishing with more chocolate
M-full bodied and creamy
O-good flavors but balance was a bit quirky. Overall not a bad brew for the price and wouldn't mind drinking it again, just not sure I would seek it out

Photo of zac16125
4.19/5  rDev +6.6%

22oz bottle into a snifter
no bottling dates

Thanks to KevSal for sending this one over as an extra!

A: Pours an opaque black with 1/2 fingers width of mocha colored head that dissipates down at a moderate rate and leaves some patchy lacing. 4.25

S: Big roasty notes, with a huge leather and tobacco presence. Subtle cocoa, and a bit of fusel alcohol. 4

T: Roasted malt, herbaceous, some bitter black coffee, semi-sweet cocoa on the finish, subtle booze. 4

M/D: Full bodied, a bit chewy, carbonation appropriately low, ABV is noticeable but its not hot, drinkability is good. 4.25

O: Overall, a really nice IS. Kind of reminds me of an Even More Jesus light, which is a compliment. Definitely worth a try. 4.25


Overall: 4.19

Photo of dbrauneis
3.73/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap at Mugs Alehouse in Brooklyn, NY

A: Pours jet black in color with a half finger tall mocha head. The head reduces to a thin layer covering the entire surface of the beer plus a slightly thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Significant lacing is observed.

S: There is a lot of alcohol present in the aroma of this beer that is slightly off putting but otherwise the aromas of this beer are extremely roasty. Lots of dark roasted and charred malts, along with some hints of bittersweet chocolate, and very light coffee notes.

T: The flavor of this beer is all roast - dark roasted malts, charred malts, bittersweet chocolate, and hints of coffee. Light amounts of alcohol can be detected.

M: Medium to full bodied with light to moderate amounts of carbonation. Slight alcohol heat in the finish.

O: I'm a huge fan of stouts and roasted malts but unfortunately the alcohol is just a hint too present for me to truly enjoy this one. I like the flavor profile once you get past the alcohol.

Photo of bgold86
4.03/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Waste of a stout, a really "who cares/meh" sort of deal, no flavor profile at all, nothing to see here...

Photo of BWood
4.44/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

The way a imperial stout should be. Good head and smooth velvet on the tongue. Overall a nice beer

Photo of 57md
3.8/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance is a deep, dark brown with half a finger of beige head that dissipates rather quickly. There is a touch of chocolate in the nose. The flavor is rich, but not terribly roasty. There is an alcohol bite on the finish which is not terribly intrusive, but not terribly enjoyable either.

Photo of womencantsail
4.08/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Stone

A: An incredibly nice looking pour on this beer, plenty of tan foam with a viscous black liquid underneath.

S: The nose is full of the usual suspects for an imperial stout. Coffee, bitter chocolate, and roasted malt with a slight smokiness to it.

T: The flavor pretty much mimics the nose. A nice coffee and roasted malt character with some notes of chocolate with a definite bitterness and some light smoke.

M: Quite a full bodied beer with a low level of carbonation and a creamy feel on the tongue.

D: For a fairly high ABV and a rather bold style, this one is fairly easy to consume and was a pretty interesting beer overall. A pretty solid offering from Speakeasy.

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Scarface Imperial Stout from Speakeasy Ales & Lagers
88 out of 100 based on 195 ratings.