Dismiss Notice
Get 12 monthly issues of BeerAdvocate magazine and save $5 when you select "auto-renew."

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join our email list →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.

Miles Davis' Bitches Brew - Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

Not Rated.
Miles Davis' Bitches BrewMiles Davis' Bitches Brew

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

901 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 901
Hads: 3,597
Avg: 4.13
pDev: 23.49%
Wants: 487
Gots: 1,385 | FT: 55
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States | website

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout | 9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: TheFightfan1 on 06-13-2010

In honor of the 40th anniversary of the original release of Bitches Brew, Miles Davis' 1970 paradigm-shifting landmark fusion breakthrough, we've created our own Bitches Brew -- a bold, dark beer that's a fusion of three threads of imperial stout and one thread of honey beer with gesho root. It's a gustatory analog to Miles' masterpiece.

38 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 901 | Hads: 3,597
Photo of Ri0
4.02/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured 750ml into snifter. Bottled on 8/2014. It is black with some dark brown highlights and a nice 2.5 finger brown head. Retention is terrific and it leaves behind think webbed lacing. Roasted malts and sweet caramel make the aroma. Some coffee, honey, and a bit of wood (presumably the root aroma) round it off. Flavor starts off with a quick sweetness, but quickly turns more bitter and roasty, almost an imperial brown ale flavor. Notes of some coffee, honey, leather, wood, and caramel give it a unique flavor among stouts. Feel is creamy and thick. A unique stout that could be too bitter for some, but I think letting it age a bit can help it out.

 656 characters

Photo of buschbeer
3.68/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

1 Pint 9.4 fl. oz. bottle
Served in a snifter
Bottled 2010

This beer pours black. My meek pour yields barely a skim of mocha head that leaves some lacing.

There isn't a whole lot of aroma. I get a little anise and cocoa.

The taste has some mellow roasted malt flavor and the anise carries into the taste. There is a little chocolate as it warms, but I think the five plus years on this beer has mellowed most of the flavor.

Full, thick, syrupy

I bought this beer back in 2010 or '11 after I watched an episode of Brew Masters about it. I thought it was going to be a one time bottling for the 40th anniversary of the Miles Davis album. I was wrong. I have never had a fresh version. This is my first taste.

 712 characters

Photo of jopezu
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a dark, opaque oil slick with a large head that hangs around. nose; ash, leather, baker's chocolate & hops. taste; roasted dark malt, burnt wood, earthy hops/gesho, molasses, bitter coffee, anise, light tobacco & honey. odd "rooty" ginger-like aftertaste along with the cola'd honey. extremely carbonated (thick frothing everywhere on the glass) & heavy, velvety mouthfeel. the tej, an african honey beer, threaded into the stout certainly lends a wealth of earthen character, but it's a touch sweet for me. there's also no escaping the almost artificially bittersweet root flavor that permeates the entire beer. another roll of the dice from dfh - different, but decidedly only decent.

 699 characters

Photo of enrique_m
3.84/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

This is one good looking brew, poured it in a snifter and it poured black as night with a caramel colored head. The smell has a dark chocolate smell and the taste is light and you can taste a bit of the honey, chocolate, and it finishes off with a light bitter taste. Overall this is a lightweight stout that is good after a hike.

 332 characters

Photo of dd43
4.02/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Three parts imperial stout, one part honey beer, all parts awesome. What's not to like, Miles Davis isn't on the bottle because this beer sucks, they had to represent. Pours super dark, opaque, khaki head, and tons of lacing. Big roast in the aroma, like shoving your nose in a can of coffee beans. Some chocolate as well, but really more bittersweet than fudgy or milk chocolate. This is not a dessert beer, don't let the honey fool you. Malts are felt and tasted, there's almost a malted milk ball candy quality but again without the sugary aspect. This is a beer made for cold weather sipping and couch lock.

 611 characters

Photo of Sir_Whats-his-face
3.41/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

I love Miles Davis and I'm a fan of DFH's bigger beers, so I was excited to try this. Unfortunately, I ended up being disappointed. Contrary to some people's complaints, I've never found their really big beers like the 120 Minute IPA to be very boozy at all, but this was. You'd think that if a brewery could convincingly hide the alcohol in a beer that's 18% ABV, they could do the same with a beer that has half the alcohol content. Not terrible, but not something I'm dying to try again.

 490 characters

Photo of MattyG85
4.55/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a chalice. Bottled on 11/18/15.

Appearance: Pours midnight black with a moderate amount of bubbles. Solid finger of tan head that settles into a thin creamy layer.

Smell: A roasty and fairly sweet dark malt driven aroma with a scent of chocolate, coffee, and honey. Dark roasted barley malt with a scent of cocoa, chocolate, coffee, smoke, toast, biscuit, caramel, and yeast. Sweet hints of honey, vanilla, and molasses. Solid hop presence with some earthy hints. Also some hints of leather, anise, and tobacco. A really good roasty aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a roasty and sweet dark malt driven taste with notes of chocolate, coffee, and honey. Dark roasted barley malt with notes of cocoa, dark chocolate, coffee, smoke, biscuit, toast, caramel, and yeast. Sweet notes of honey along with some vanilla and molasses. Subtle notes of anise, leather, and tobacco. Considerable hop bitterness as this was bottled about a month ago. A really good taste.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with a carbonation level on the heavier side of medium. Creamy, silky, and pretty drying on the finish. Alcohol is masked well.

Overall: A really good Imperial Stout. Good dark malt flavors with a nice touch from the honey. Doesn't really have the dark fruit presence you often find in big stouts but perhaps some will show with some age. Overall a pretty good beer named after a legendary album.

 1,416 characters

Photo of Wiffler27
4.53/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours jet black with a thick dark-cream colored head. looks damn good and mean.

smells sweet. notes of coffee, vanilla, chocolate.

taste is sweet and clean. a thinner-bodied double stout, not a RIS. carbonation is clearly there. sweet and flavorful though. goes down smooth; an easy drinker. light bodied for a big stout but is still complex. a balanced beer as well, hard to describe honestly. not as big as a RIS but much bigger than a regular stout.

glad i bought 2 bombers of this, worth that for sure. a good and drinkable double stout.

 544 characters

Photo of Martinnewman48
4.27/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 ounces poured out of growler first thought is this is certainly a dark beer with a tan head that started to disappear but never quite dissipates entirely. At first smell of oats coffee seems to over power my senses and tastes of coffee and Carmel are delicious. Over all feel is very drinkable and enjoyable. If u see this one while browsing it will certainly be taken into consideration again

 396 characters

Photo of TheElectricOne
4.21/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 750 into a tulip:

Appearance: gorgeous brew. Obsidian black in body, with deep brown highlights around the rim. Huge, puffy head with a mahogany color to it. Lots of stickiness, both in retention, and lacing.

Aroma: Opens up a lot as the beer warms. Starts very subdued, but as it warms, coffee, chocolate, and a touch of honey come through. Solid base of roast as well.

Taste: this is not a coffee stout, but I got tons and tons of coffee anyway. DFH really packed a ton of flavor into this beer, and it is very decadent. Chocolate malt lends lots of fudginess to that potent coffee flavor. I'm not exactly sure where the "gesho root" comes in, but there's a touch of sweetness from the honey that is delightful.

Feel: sticky body, with medium carbonation. More than expected, but it was just right for flavor enhancement. Finishes surprisingly dry for an imperial stout. Very nicely crafted.

Overall: crazy good stout, and it's readily available anywhere. Tons of flavor, with DFH's typical elegant craft make this a beautiful, subtle brew.

 1,063 characters

Photo of SFNC
4.22/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Cliche alert; whilst listening to disk one of Miles Davis's Bitches Brew.
Look; Black, no light getting through, nice foamy brown head that has major staying power.
Smell; Roasted malt, maybe some licorice. Not a strong nose, but it make you anxious to take the first sip.
Taste; Complex, semi-sweet chocolate, coffee, molasses, slight bitterness in the middle followed by sweet malt finish.
Feel; Pours think, but not quite a chewy brew. Minimal carbonation, dry finish.
Overall; A very good, unique take on the Imperial Stout.

 533 characters

Photo of Elumbeer
4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from 750mL bottle into two Belgian glasses (snifter wannabes).

Having not read any of the reviews here, I was completely surprised by what came out of this bottle. As a lover of dark brews, I cannot fathom a better looking beer- almost entirely opaque with an extremely enticing, thick, creamy-looking mocha head which clung to the glass with perfect rings of lacing.

But I think the appearance of this beer set my expectations too high. The aroma didn't really let me down, with some nice notes of coffee and maybe a bit of spice. But I didn't feel like the taste followed-through with what my eyes and nose caught. It was a very well-balanced mix of interesting flavors for sure, and I definitely appreciate the craftsmanship involved in that. But ultimately I was left wanting more coffee flavor and a smoother texture, rather than the drier, more carbonated bite I received.

If Epic's Big Bad Baptist had a baby with this, it would probably be a near-perfect beer for me.


Note: I spend a lot of time drinking barrel-aged stouts that are all over 10%. If that's not what you're accustomed-to, you might feel this beer is thicker and more flavorful than I do.

 1,176 characters

Photo of JAck199
4.32/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A burst of coffee....smooth rich flavor blankets your mouth....awsome beer. Complex in flavor toffee chocolate coffee and a nice rich maltiness. Drink it while you can.

 171 characters

Photo of chinchill
4.37/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle served repeatedly in a Porter Bar goblet.

I'm glad to have been able to get a bottle of this for my cellar, especially after attending a release party where the keg was kicked in 15 minutes ... just before I arrived.

The beer looks thick and near black in the pour. There's a small, fairly weak, brown head.

Aroma: complex and very enticing.

Flavor: excellent, if not quite up with the aroma. Nicely complex and lightly spicy, with cinnamon most prominent among the spice(s?). Improved with warming. Particularly fine aftertaste. Flavor seems to vary with each sip, and certainly changes with warming.

Feel: thick... very thick; smooth and slick. My tongue feels coated for a while after each sip. Well chosen, light carbonation.

O: truly excellent; well hidden ABV, at least with some aging.

 827 characters

Photo of tonytiger27
4.4/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A masterpiece. Maybe the best looking beer I've ever drank. Delicious, dry, bold, sweet, intense, interesting. A true masterpiece that needs to be appreciated!

 159 characters

Photo of docoman
3.67/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

After having world wide stout just before this beer, was serious let down, not fault of this beer just no where near as tasty as the WW stout. Decent beer but there are much better regular stouts in this range.

 211 characters

Photo of Barracudas
5/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a bomber into a sniffer. Great color. The taste was very complex and betwithching! Hints of chocolate, hints of coffee, hints of honey. An excellent off-centered beer.

 179 characters

Photo of sjdevel
4.86/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Look:
This brew is so think when poured out of a 750ml bottle that is made a loud Glug-Glug-Glug sound! Other than being extra thick, this beer had a nice 2-3 finger head that never seems to totally disappear as it leaves a nice foam ring and a thin layer strewn across the surface. Foam is a dark tan color and the beer is as black as you can possibly get.

Smell:
Very chocolatey, caramelly, and coffee overtones. Quickly, powerful scents of smoky wood and tobacco take over. There is also tart fruit flavors that swirl around with the sweet malt flavors. There is a decent alcohol burn. After the sweet and tart flavors fade, smoky hints reside and the finish is partially sweet, but somewhat dry.

Feel:
Very full bodied and the mouthfeel is thick and creamy. This one is quite oily and slippery.

Overall:
I loved this one and had to try it as I remember seeing the making of it on their Brew Masters episode. Very good and highly recommend. I will be getting another one of these soon. It is not often that I repeat-buy a specialty beer like this one, but will (as I do with Dogfish brews). Huge fan.

I am an off-centered person and I love their off-centered beers!

 1,183 characters

Photo of ArkyVaughan
4.03/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I am not a bug Dogfish fan, but this is a very solid stout. The honey plays nicely with the roasty elements of the stout. I don't know what Gesho is supposed to taste like, so I don't know how well that flavor came through.

 223 characters

Photo of KTCamm
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

9/30...aged this bad boy a few years. Pours dark black tan foam, settling out completely. Hearty robust coffee expresso nose. Subtle honey sweetness pokes through. Tart taste open, some honey notes and wrapped in a fog of chocolate coffee malt. Root vegetables. One of the most interesting beers and blends I have come across.

 326 characters

Photo of eaglesont
4.14/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

bought with the intention of cellaring...that was this morning.

Bitches Brew inspired by the 40th anniversary of Miles Davis's first Gold Record. I think having a little bit of an appreciation for this record helps appreciate Sams inspiration. Off beat, unexpected, and rhythmic from when the top pops to the last drip.

Dark pour with a latte like head, smells of chocolate, coffee, tastes of more chocolate, roasted maltiness, vanilla bean.

mouthfeel is quick to take over the pallet, and much like Miles, changes pace to finish with deep clean notes. 9% ABV definitely becomes overpowering but in a nice way. another homer by the Dogfish crew.

 652 characters

Photo of AppaZappa
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from 8/14 poured into a tulip glass. Pours dark, dark brown with rich mocha head. Inviting look with some nice lacing. Smell is smoke, chocolate, malt, honey, touch of coffee and wood. Taste opens with smoke, char, coffee, and chocolate, but goes to malt, honey and a slightly bitter finish, which I assume is that gesho doin' its thing. The end is nice, because it doesn't feel overly sweet. Mouth is medium to heavy, a bit lighter than I anticipated, but certainly not thin. Probably easier to drink than it should be.

I think a year in the cellar did this right, as I had a more "fresh" bottle and want to say that I like this better (or is that me justifying my cellar?). Anyways, I'd grab another to stash away for a bit.

 734 characters

Photo of ajilllau
4.48/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What an outstanding beer. We served it in a 16oz snifter. It poured a nice thick densely black with a thick head. The beer was smooth to the taste with hints of cappachino and a lingering finish.

 195 characters

Photo of Gregaroo
4.29/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2012 bottle stored in my dark basement. Put on some Miles and poured into a snifter. Surprisingly dark/black in color. Slight head. So nice and smooth. This certainly held up over the last few years. I'll hunt down some fresh bottles to try as well.

 249 characters

Photo of Fargrow
3.64/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2014, aged almost exactly one year. Could not get over the one dimensional smokey flavor. Maybe gesho root is smokey, but I was looking for honey, chocolate, roast, and other expected imperial stout flavors. Mouthfeel was thinner. I have a 2013 in the cellar and hopefully will be able to try it fresh sometime to see if the experience repeats itself.

 351 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Miles Davis' Bitches Brew from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
92 out of 100 based on 901 ratings.