Immort Ale - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Immort AleImmort Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

2,376 Ratings
THE BROS
89
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,376
Reviews: 1,112
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 15.14%
Wants: 163
Gots: 335 | FT: 12
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
English Strong Ale |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-15-2001

For this beer, we use maple syrup from Red Brook Farm -- Sam's family farm in Western Massachusetts, peat-smoked barley, juniper berries and vanilla.

Immort is fermented with a blend of English and Belgian yeasts, then aged in the big oak tanks at the brewery.

The sweet and earthy flavors meld magnificently in the Immort Ale. But be warned, the ABV is 11%, so after one or two you may start feeling immortal (even though we promise you won't be).

50 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,376 | Reviews: 1,112
Photo of Sammy
3.72/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Complex aroma of smoke and barrel. Taste gets the wood, peat smoke,the juniper berries and fruit. Tasted like a flavoured herbal tea so flavoured porter. Medium mouthfeel, was expecting even thicker. Very different and not my cup of tea.Another odd and interesting brew from this brewery.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.73/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap the day after Churchill's Renaissance at Churchill's Pub & Grille in San Marcos, CA.

Pours a clear honey brown with a beige head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Smell is pretty subtle but there is some malt, smoke, and spice in the nose. Taste is of malt and a nice smoky flavor with a tiny bit of band-aid present. There is a mild bitterness with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer with a nice smoke flavor that comes out especially as the beer warms up.

Photo of kylehay2004
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Half finger head on a clear amber brew. Nice amount of lacing. Aroma is mostly caramel malt with various wood aromas including oak, maple and hickory. Coffee and dark fruit notes are present as well. Overall very complex aroma. Very smokey and woody with more hickory and BBQ like flavor. Finish is a little hippy with the malts coming through more. Overall the exact kid of brew I expect from dogfish head: unique. Edgy and well done even if it isn't your favorite beer ever.

Photo of metter98
3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is clear but very dark amber in color and poured with a thin beige head.
S: There is a strong aroma of barley malts in the nose along with some notes of alcohol.
T: Like the smell, the taste is very malty and has some notes of maple syrup. Notes of alcohol are evident in the finish.
M: It feels full-bodied and very smooth on the palate with a light amount of carbonation. There is some warming from the alcohol in the finish.
D: This beer is definitely a slow sipper considering its strength and the presence of alcohol in the smell and taste.

Note: 1999 vintage

Photo of Thorpe429
4.15/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had the 2008 edition this past March, so it was nearing a year in age, and wow was it fantastic.

A: Very dark brown with a good slightly-darkened head. Plenty of lacing.

S: Rich with caramel and sweetness from dark fruits, molasses, and maple. Very complex.

T: Caramel malt sweetness with some molasses, maple, and vanilla. A little bit of smoke to it, but nothing overpowering. Everything melds together so well and it is incredibly complex. Simply outstanding.

M: Heavy and lush; incredibly creamy. Quite smooth.

D: Much better with age than fresh off the line, but a nice, interesting ale all around.

Photo of brentk56
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a fairly clear medium amber color with a modest head consisting of tiny bubbles; some splashy lacing here and there

Smell: Smoked peaty nose with caramel, maple and vanilla tones; a bit vinous

Taste: Starts out with a somewhat brandy-like flavor, though not as intense nor sweet as a brandy; a touch of vanilla and maple on the front as well; at mid-palate some bitter orange flavors kick in and the smoked peatiness on the nose starts to command attention; the mid-palate flavors build to the finish and are joined by black pepper and alcoholic warming; rather sweet at the end, like a liqueur (Drambuie?)

Mouthfeel: Rich and chewy with relatively low carbonation

Overall: Another unusual brew from Dogfish; very nice after dinner

(Note: This is a beer that ages particularly well, allowing the alcohol to mellow and the malty flavors to develop.)

Photo of BEERchitect
3.68/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Session 06/01/07, Release 2007
Although I expected a heavy, fresh, barleywine-ish brew with strong alcohols, intense barley malt flavor and sweetness and agression; I did not expect all of the new smokiness that I experienced in the aroma and flavors. It dominated all of the caramel, vanilla, fruity, and syrupy flavors. Nearly to rauchbier proportions, the heaviness of the brew and the peat (scotch whisky) flavors, though complex and bold, compromise the beer too much. Age should be kind, however the beer is way too immature for drinking in the near future.

Session 07/ 01/05, Release 2004, Rating 4.5
This one is a treat. Looks golden, copper, bronze, colors change as they refract in the light. Dainty dense white head that fades into the alcoholic lace and coating. Smells mildly sweet with deep fruits of dates and figs. other sweetness abounds with honey, brown sugar, caramel, and toffee. Tastes oily sweet with vanilla, caramel, and those dark fruits. The flavors are compounded with finess flavors of wood, mild hops, and alcohol. Full, round body being cut by the alcohol makes this beer go down easily. Finishes is warm and sweet. Hop flavors detected. Aftertaste is oily and refined and cloying sweet. Alcohol dries the palate. Not as bitter as most American Barleywines. Borrows English flavors in finess and maturity. Another gem by Dogfish Head.

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.17/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

fresh at the dogfish taphouse in rehoboth deleware. poured a dense amber color into a sinfter, with a disappointing barely there head. smells and tastes like whiskey, charcoaly and smokey, with notes of sweet maple syrup and or molasses and a plethora of hops. somewhere between beer, booze, and wine, this beer is definitely not for the weekend budlight drinker. its massive and complex and mandates that every drop be savored and digested and understood as well as possible before taking the next one. its a beer drinkers beer, and for that i really appreciate it. the mouthfeel is alcohol first, alcohol second, and an aged sort of smoothness in a distant third. it grew on me with every quaff

Photo of Phyl21ca
4.15/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle courtesy of Boboski: Poured a deep hazy orangey color ale with a medium foamy head with good lacing. Aroma of sweet malt is pretty complex with some light vanilla and some dry fruits. Taste is mix between some dry fruits such as figs and plums and some sweet malt with some light oak. I found some similarities with aged english barleywine maybe due to the low hops employed in this beer. Body is above average with some low carbonation and alcohol is well hidden. Another very good beer from a brewery that knows how to brew big beers.

Photo of Knapp85
4.12/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had wanted to try the Immort Ale for the longest time. For some reason it never seemed to show up at the local shops I go to. After stopping at Crazy Bruce's in Connecticut on my way to Vermont I saw that they had bottles of it there. So I made a mixed 6 pack with one Immort Ale. Finally got to have it that night at the motel. I was more than happy about getting it.

It poured out as a nice looking brown color with a slightly fizzy tan color head on it. The smell of the beer had some vanilla, some barrel earthiness to it, there was also a sweet boozy aroma too. The taste was quite nice also, plenty of flavors in this brew. Much like the nose a lot of the same qualities come through on the tongue. The mouthfeel was smooth and semi thick with a good carbonation to it. Overall this beer is a powerhouse. It goes down nicely especially with some aging and it's high ABV can hit ya pretty hard if you let it. Well worth trying though!

Photo of BuckeyeNation
2.28/5  rDev -40.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Nearly clear, reddish copper with a minimal off-white head that falls quickly to a thin film. Lace is nearly nonexistent. Alcohol dominates the nose, although I can appreciate sweet dark fruit as well.

As far as the flavor profile... again, alcohol overwhelms the palate. Next most prominent is a slightly sweet metallic graininess. I'm nearly unable to finish this. However, to be fair, it is improving a little as it warms (I started it out at about 50 degrees). At least now the flavor has a fighting chance against the alcohol. The mouthfeel is nicely smooth, but the taste comes close to ruining the entire experience.

I've seen Immort Ale described as a barleywine, but also as a strong/old ale. To me, it tastes like a 'brandy wine', like the brewers poured some brandy into the beer before bottling. I think I'll cellar one for a few years to see if that helps to mellow it out a little.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.02/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

One year removed from the last time I try this, Jay is nice enough to send me down a growler of this one to try. Half leaked out on the way but the rest looked good enough So I cracked it open to see how it would roll.

Decent look here, albeit a bit flat. Very dark brown in color, with a rich, reddish tone to it. No head or lacing to speak of, but nicely opaque. The aroma was enormously sweet. Lots of maple and oak in here, hints of vanilla and molasses as well as a touch of bourbon. The flavor was more of the same. Very smooth, especially considering the ABV in here. Rather lifeless body, with little to know carbonation, though I have to say decent chweyness to it. Long drawn out sweet finish, left hints of maple syrup and sugar on my tongue long after it was gone, along with a nice touch of boozinesss.

Overall I have to say it was better then I remember it, though no doubt suffered from the leakage. I am sure fresh, this would be awesome. Still for 11% this was excellent and I look forward to getting it again on tap one day.

Photo of emerge077
3.98/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Thanks to Wayne for this one, I'd tried it a long time ago but it was an old bottle that hadn't aged well. Bottled 1/27/14.

Russet reddish gold, bright clarity and suspended carbonation ever present. Drippy lace and good, lasting surface coverage.

Aroma is slightly sweet and yeasty, though somewhat closed. Toasted almonds, peated malt, and fig jam.

Rich and sticky, though fairly easy to sip. Roasty chicory, leather, dried plums, maple sap. Traces of oak and grape must, a mild bitterness lingers in the aftertaste. Full bodied with considerable alcohol content though not especially boozy and still relatively balanced. Overall this was pretty good, and seems to be widely available.

Photo of oberon
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice reddish brown color with a slight head but more carbonation than expected,aroma was rich and of vanilla.The vlavor is very oaky with some vanilla tones and a nice lingering fruitiness.A nice complex beer to savor cant drink more than one or two though.

Photo of zeff80
3.85/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pourd out a somewhat cloudy, brown color with a pillowy, cream-colored, small head. It left some soapy lace.

S - It smelled of smoke and wood. Also some biscuity malt notes.

T - A very complex and unique blend of flavors. Some vanilla, caramel, alcohol and sweet, sweet malt.

M - A chewy, thick mouthfeel. This is a medium to heavy-bodied beer with a pronounced heat from the alcohol content.

D - This is a good beer but very strong and sweet.

Photo of ChainGangGuy
1.15/5  rDev -70%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Appearance: Pours a hazy bronze-colored body with a thin, small white head. Virtually no lacing to speak of.

Smell: Alcohol and sugary, sweet caramel teamed up with cardboard and rancid butter to create one of the most putrid aromas ever. Horrendous! This is a bad sign.

Taste: Shock and surprise registered in my eyes the moment I tasted it. It's the surprise of tasting something you knew you wouldn't like, but then it actually tasted far, far worse.

Ugh. There's just something about this beer that is really a turn off to me. A distressing, unmistakable band-aid flavor. Well, it's more of an attack on the tongue than a flavor, but still. I went looking for the maple, vanilla, and oak in the flavor and found only band-aids, glue, and rubber. The description on the bottle is completely foreign to anything contained within.

All in all, a flavor akin to burning the contents of a medicine cabinet and lapping up the results.

Mouthfeel: Thin-bodied, but being so syrupy as to relentlessly cling to the tongue.

Drinkability: With no sink nearby to dump this in, it was an absolute struggle to finish. The idea of pouring this out onto the floor was rather tempting.

Wow. Just, wow.

Photo of TMoney2591
3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a DFH Alehouse house snifter.

From notes (hence the ridiculous straightforwardness): Pours a mostly clear ruby amber with nearly no real head to speak of. The smell is of raisins, figs, maple syrup, whiskey (didn't see that one coming), and oak. The taste is pretty similar, with notes of raisins, whiskey (it's back), molasses, brown sugar, nutmeg, and stainless steel (ever lick a spoon?). The body is far on the heavy side of medium, with light carbonation and a thickly smooth feel. It is a bit much for regular/heavy consumption, though.

Photo of nickfl
3.07/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Amber with good clarity. Good head retention for such a high ABV.

S - Ugggh. Bizarre, I can't decide if it is oxadized, infected, intentionally wild, or just smokey.

T - Sweet. Fruity and rasiny with a finish that is very similar to the smell but milder.

M - Thick and syrupy.

D - Still don't really know what to say about this one. At first I was very disappointed, but towards the end it was growing on me. It reminds me of the Deproef Flemish Primitive Ales, which may or may not be a good thing. I would really like to know if what I am experianceing is intentional or not. If there is smoked malt in this, it would pretty much explain everything for me. Smoked beers are like nuclear weapons, tragic in the wrong hands.

P.S. - After finishing this one I have to admit that it doesn't dissapoint on strength. I am good and sorted, even more than expected for 11%.

Photo of oline73
3.55/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a clear reddish amber with a half finger of off white head that fades to a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Sweet caramel like malt with some dark fruit, vanilla, and alcohol. You can really pick up the berries in the smell.

Taste: The peat smoked malt shows up here big time. I honestly didn't read the description, so I wasn't expecting it after the smell. The peat and alcohol cover up most of the other flavors. Some sweetness and some mild fruit. I might age my other bottles to see if things blend better.

Mouthfeel: The body is on the thick side of medium with aggressive carbonation and a slightly dry finish.

Overall: The smell of this beer is fantastic, but the smokey taste and alcohol cover up all the delicate flavors. I'm hoping that this one smoothes out over time.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.65/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep reddish brown color, with a thin white head, that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains caramelized malts, vanilla, some spices, some fruit and touches of smoke, maple, alcohol and hops.

T: The taste starts out with a little bit of smokiness followed by mildly sweet flavors of vanilla, fruit and maple. The malt character is hearty and covers up the high ABV well. The hops presence is mild but complementary and brings some balance. The after-taste is slightly smoky and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Flavorful and complex, goes down easily, not too filling, well-disguised strong kick, good representation of style, a unique combination of flavors where if those flavors appeal to you they make the beer worth drinking for a while.

Photo of oriolesfan4
4.4/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bought a 4 pack for $12.99

Pours a nice mahogany color, decent head to it... not much lacing though surprisingly. Smell gives off some vanilla and maple, nice sweet aroma to it. Nice full body and great mouthfeel, a nice creamy beer. A nice woody flavor in there with more of the vanilla and maple tastes, finishes with a slight alcohol warming effect. Whoa, this is a good beer.. but the kind you'd have to be careful about having too many at one sitting. A nice sipper, it's one of the stronger DFH offerings I've had but the taste is superb.

Photo of Jason
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Presentation: Green label with blurb about the beer on a 12oz brown bottle. "Ages Well", is noted on the label with a "Packaged In" date also.

Appearance: Lightly hazed dark reddish copper colour with a thin off white lace. Semi-creamy tiny bubbled chunky head.

Smell: Deep, rich and full of caramel with ripe fruit, notes of wood and tree sap in the nose. Extremely complex and fragrant. Alcohol is a touch vinous with estery and mild solvent aromas.

Taste: Big vinous character, woody flavours play on a faked dryness. Light acidic twang, syrupy malt flavour of caramel and ripe fruit. Traces of vanilla and toasted grain go back and forth. Ghost like smokiness. Alcoholic character is bordering on overwhelming, ester with faint fusel solvent flavours. Hops are part of the brashness that comes along with the alcohol and remaining grain. Hints of dried bitter orange peel and black pepper unfold in the finish.

Notes: A barley wine of no other, so extreme and complex this could easily use another year or two to mellow out. Though it is fine to sip in the brash form that it is in now. Outstanding.

Photo of russpowell
4.23/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours an effervescent caramel/brown with 2 fingers of light tan head. Very healthy head retention & lacing

S: Rich malt & deep smokeyness

T: Rich malt & oaky smoke. Caramel, dryness & maple syrup follow. Finishes with slight boozeyness, loads of smoke & maple

MF: Syruppy with low carbonation

Drinks alright for the abv, the smokeyness is OTT IMO! Kind of reminds me of a singlemalt scotch

Photo of Rifugium
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Monk's, Philly, PA

A yeasty strong ale with an old ale demeanor. Poured silghtly hazy dark reddish-brown with a small, tan head. Heavy tones of maple syrup, vanilla, and oak in both the aroma and taste. Malty and smooth, but with a bit of an alcohol kick (as would be expected from an 11%ABV brew). Overall smooth, medium mouthfeel, slightly bitter aftertaste, but not annoyingly noticeable. Good and drinkable. Lots of character.

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.6/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer just seems huge, or Immortal if you will. Pours an attractive hue of copper amber with an off white fluffy head, sticks around for quite awhile leaving a trickled lace in it's dust. The nose is a full of malt sweetness and underlying complex aroma of dried fruit tones all wrapped up in a mystic air of smokiness (rauch style). This beer acts like a paint brush, and my palate as the easel. A true well done piece of art like poetry with the sharp mildly bitter sweetness coming down with each stroke on my tongue. Leaves notes of vanilla and maple syrup here a very full and challenging flavor, but no way is this overbearing. The art form that exists here is that because a brewerer managed to complement so many flavors together in one beer. Great beer, I plan on picking up more of these to age, and hopefull I will be able to bring out more of these subtle flavors and tame the sharpness of the sweet tones to make room for other experiences with in this bottle. The mouthfeel is a chewy full mouthfeel mindblowing experience to sip and enjoy. So, drinkable I can't believe this beer is packing 11% ABV, a beer that could truly sneak up on you, but oh it's so amazing worth taking this much alcohol in one beer.

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Immort Ale from Dogfish Head Brewery
86 out of 100 based on 2,376 ratings.