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Miles Davis' Bitches Brew - Dogfish Head Brewery

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.

884 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 884
Hads: 3,499
Avg: 4.13
pDev: 23.49%
Wants: 486
Gots: 1,313 | FT: 52
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

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
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Reviews: 884 | Hads: 3,499
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.

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

A - Pours out black , with a two finger mocha head. The head fades off quickly and leaves some spotty lacing.

S - malt and smokiness i can also smell the seetness of honey.

T - Wow what a suprise it looks like a stout but the first thing that comes to the taste buds is honey and malt it reminds me almost of mead ( because of the honey ) the abv is misleading as its 9% but the alcohol is really not present at all.

M - Smooth is all I can say very drinkable.

D - overall a extremely enjoyable beer I would put this easily in my top 5 but that is my taste. not a everyday beer but maybe for the holidays or a wedding etc. Dogfish head has def outdone themselves on this one kudos.

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

Enjoyed this 22oz bomber out of a large snifter glass.

A: Pours a gorgeous pitch black hue with a thick, dark brown, frothy 2-finger head that lasts forever leaving a partial trail down the glass and ends in a wispy lace.

S: Toasted malts and chocolate aromas fill the nose. Slighlty sweet backbone with hints of caramel, cocoa powder and caramel.

T: Dark rich ale with a generous sweetness with a roasted malt bitterness. Strong chocolate and coffee overtones, with a nice malt background. Slightly hoppy and very smooth.

M: Very strong and boozy. Heavy body and medium-heavy carbonation

O: This is by far the best beer I’ve ever had. Nice and dark, great flavor and aroma, and nicely balanced. I’m a big fan of this brew! I’ve been waited to try this forever and it was well worth the wait!!!

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Photo of Edwaka01
5/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from 750ml into snifter.

A - African midnight motor oil black-hole. Chocolate milk/iron clay deposit brown-red 1 finger head, dissipates slowly leaving thin lacy layer on top.

S - Typical dark roasty malts. Chocolate, coffee bitterness, but with a late finish of sweet raw honey.

T - Same as the taste, but the imperial stoutness and the honeyness blend together more rather than one following the other. Very smooth.

M - Full - not overly heavy. Smooth - but with a tinge of alcohol. Perfect.

O - My only 5 so far. I need more of this. Tried it once at a tasting, and was super impressed, but I only got a lil bit. This 750 is going down easy and I wish I had more.

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

Appearance: Deep dark and muddy thick. The tan head has great fantastic retention which is better than most in the similar category. Lasting, creamy, huge.
Aroma: Classic expectations from the style, roasted coffee, sweet caramel, dark chocolate, blah blah blah. What’s interesting is that you get heavy smoke and the honey is so thick it reminds me of a block of fresh honeycomb. The alcohol is masked by the heavy chocolate.
Flavor: This full bodied brew is deep and complicated. Though creamy it is delicate and though flat it is complicated. I get innumerable roots and heavily intertwined flavors of gesho root (which reminds me ginseng and rutabaga). There are very intense interludes of dark flowers, purple fruit, and raisin followed by a crescendo of pleasant brown sugar & dry spice (never thought I would say that ever).
Overall: This beer is just about perfect. It has a long finish, moderate sweetness, a completely muted acidity, light tannic character and an overall amazing experience. This beer has been in the cellar for a year now it simple got better.
Where should it be placed: This beer is perfect for your cellar, to be drank independently and I would definitely recommend it for a beer list (though it’s extremely seasonal).

Read more – beers to find, restaurant advice, etc…

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

Out of over 3,000 plus beers this is in my top 10. Have had it dozens of times and both batches. Great robust not too chocolatly front, with a sweet malt N honey mid, and a perfect roast creamy finish. For a beer that has so much going on in variety of malts, hops, and honey, you think it you would over powering or off center....but its smooth and perfect(meaning I would change a thing).

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Photo of notchucknorris
4.97/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Purchased at Beverages 4 Less

A: Impossibly dark in color. Almost as dark as The Abyss (but not quite). Impressive.

S: A lot of honey with some coffee and molasses. I picked up a deep earthy smell in this that I loved.

T: Unbelievable. A little milk chocolate sweetness, then some coffee, dark chocolate, a wonderful earthiness and some roasted malt. Leaves a velvety coating in your mouth that makes you never want to drink another beer in your life. One of the best beers I've ever had.

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Photo of mfunk9786
4.95/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The best Dogfish Head brew yet. I really hope this isn't just a one-off, as they should Midas Touch/Palo Santo Marron it and put it into the regular rotation despite it being a special brew.

A: Pours beautifully, the black stream from the bottle is unbelievably smooth and thick-looking, and it sits with a proud mocha head in the glass just daring you to drink it.

S: Smells sweet with definite chocolate and smoke. Sort of mysterious, in that it smells much more candy-like than your average RIS.

T: The taste is just incredible. Sweetness from the honey first, followed by smooth dark chocolate with a bitter finish from the hops, anise character, and the gesho root. It has an earthy character that I've never experienced before in any beer, ever. One of a kind.

M: Extremely smooth and thick with a dry finish. Feels lovely and luscious in the mouth, like the melted chocolate in a waterfall on a wedding reception buffet line.

D: I drank this uncomfortably quickly, and am a little ashamed that between my fiance and I, we finished the 750ml bottle during dinner and now have none in our fridge anymore. I need to rush out tomorrow to get a couple more bottles, because this one is going to go fast and has quite the buzz surrounding it.

Attention Dogfish Head: Just because this beer is out to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Miles Davis' album doesn't mean you should just abandon it now that you've brewed it. It's the perfect imperial stout to have in your lineup and you'd be denying everyone of a lot of beer enjoyment if you give up on it now. One of the best stouts in the world - an instant classic.

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Photo of stompilator
4.94/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

22oz. bottle, split between two snifters.

L- Poured a thick, dark brown, very light head.

S- Very inviting aroma of chocolate, honey, and malt.

T- Very characteristic of an Imperial Stout - chocolatey, roasty, with a subdued but very welcome hop flavor. Lots of subtle and complex notes, with the honey pleasantly fading in on the back for a fantastic finish.

F- Just what you'd expect from an Imperial Stout - full-bodied and lingering on the palate, but certainly not syrupy.

As Bitches Brew is perhaps my favorite album of all time, I had to really press to set aside any pretensions regarding this drink, but the complexity and balance simply can't be ignored. Just as big, wandering, and wild as the album for which it was brewed.

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Photo of WyethBednar
4.91/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A really amazing stout. Takes a while to open up, but it's well worth it. One of the best stouts I've ever had, and probably one of my Top 5 beers overall.

Appearance: Really, really black. Completely opaque, which got me super excited right off the bat. The head pours a rich cocoa brown and slowly dies off to more of a cream color. The only reason I deducted a couple points was because there was basically no lacing as I drank it, which I don't really care about honestly but some people might.

Smell: Basic stouty smell. Can't really pick out the honey at all, chocolates pretty obvious.

Taste: Amazing. Especially when it opens up a bit. This beer really evolves throughout the bottle. I recommend drinking the whole bomber yourself because that should give you time to experience the whole palette that the beer has to offer. For me, it took about 75% of the way through the beer before I could get the honey, but once I did it was incredible! A roasty, chocolate stout in general and an incredible hint of super sweet honey. Really complex and really awesome.

Mouthfeel: Great. Just the right amount of carbonation for a stout, kinda thick feeling. You'll feel the alcohol in the back of your throat. The beer is really pretty heavy.

Overall, I can't recommend this beer enough. It's expensive, but it's absolutely worth it. One of the most complex, rich and just generally good stouts I've ever had.

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Photo of beergoot
4.88/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Opaque blackness capped with a thick, chunky light brown head. A very heady roasted, burnt grain, nut, and bread quality to the smell. The taste envelops you in dark goodness: rich, smooth, velvety tastes coat and please the tongue. Roasted grains; bittersweet chocolate, a honey-smoothness (maybe an effect of the gesho?). Very much comes across like a German chocolate cake or a rich, creamy dark fudge.

One of the best beers I've come across. I will track down another bottle or two and keep 'em for some (as yet undetermined) special occasion. A stunning beer...

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Photo of albertjr21
4.87/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Into a small red wine glass, this sits the darkest shade of brown, characteristic to the style, and could be called black. There is a well sustained dark beige head that resembles that of a chocolate milk color.

S: Wondrous aroma of dark chocolate, sweet malt and roasted nut. A very alluring blend that shines through.

M/T: Opens up with a sweet, creamy and just lightly sour feel into a smooth, sweet and earthy dark roasted malt center. A pleasant smokey noted cocoa bean aftertaste. A complex multi-level feel throughout in general.

D: Paired fairly well with rotisserie chicken but I'd love to try this again with a good basic hamburger or even a bowl of vanilla ice cream. Great session ability for a Russian Imperial!

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

Holy shit. So dark. So robust. So… imperial. That big roasty stout flavor with those hints of honey; flirts with hop bitterness at the end like a finishing punch.

LOOK: So brown it's black. Totally opaque. Delicate brown head that settles quickly down into a thin ring around the glass.

SMELL: Low-key aroma that hints at the honey and roasted malt flavors ahead.

TASTE: Highly assertive. Big roast malt flavor like you'd expect from a stout, but then that sweetness from the honey. (Such a nice change from lactose or chocolate. Also: I don't know what flavor gesho is supposed to contribute but…)

FEEL: Thick, full, oily. Really coats the mouth and sticks around. And despite the serving temperature… warming.

P.S. After reading about gesho, I'm guessing that's the buttering agent here instead of hops. That must be the "finishing punch" I got.

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

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.

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.

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

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!

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Photo of bierguru
4.85/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - up there with the darkest of dark chocolate color lace keeps fairly well looks like a typical russian imperial stout

S - im guessing that the first smell i get that i cant pin point is the gesho very interesting very odd but not in a bad way you also get a slight roast coffee smell

T - awesome!!!! flavors pop more as well as change as the beer warms up Ive never had gesho before but im thinking there is a strong taste of it as well as honey and as it warms up the gesho fades and a flavor of cuban coffee takes over

M - smooth cuban coffee like

D - i would literally drink this all day its that good

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Photo of 01001111
4.83/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Dark chocolate or espresso; a warm, opaque, earthy brown.

S: Burnt cacao nibs with a slight bitter edge.

T: Black coffee, soil, a slight sweetness and bitter vegetation.

M: Velvety and smooth but not as full bodied as the dark appearance indicates.

O: An amazing dark beer with a wonderfully complex flavor. Far more restrained and drinkable than a typical Imperial Stout. A worthwhile tribute to a great album.

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Photo of wikk3d
4.83/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

My first review on my phone since my laptop died so bare with me.

Appearance: Very dark body pours with a very thin brown head that fades quickly. Not see through.

Aroma: Chocolate, very prevalent, hint of honey. Very strong bitter smell.

Taste: Very strong cocoa flavor, bitter but not overpowering. There's some sweetness that comes through at the end. Vert heavy.

Mouth: Again, this is an extremely heavy beer so the taste lasts for quite some time. It's not bitter to the point that it's unbearable.

Drinkability: I'm glad I got ahold of this beer. It's not too filling, it's just the right amount of chocolate character, and an entire bottle is easily drinkable in one sitting. I'd definitely recommend picking one up.

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Photo of dborginis
4.83/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bitches brew.  Thick pour into a brandy snifter, very black.  Cocoa powder colored puff of head.  Smells of rich toasty malts and a bit of booze.  Listening to Pharoah's Dance, track 1 of the Bitches Brew album.  Used to be really into this era/style of jazz, but missed this one.  Great beer, great album...thanks Dogfish!

With every sip, the beer clings to the glass for a good minute.  Thick!  The richness of the roasted malts hits first and hits hard.  A tasty bitterness arts in the mouth, and coats the mouth and lingers.  A sweetness linger as well.  Earthy taste and caramel are a bit more subtle.  Carbonation is perfect.  

Top notch imperial stout, and maybe the most drinkable.  Given that Dogfish's other bottled imperial stout, and other beers tend to be on the extreme side of abv, the 9% abv was appreciated.  Had it on tap on release day and it was excellent as well! Will have to get a few more if I can!!

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Photo of jdb8507
4.83/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I am normally not a coffee/stout drinker. I do not drink coffee, although I enjoy the smell.

However, if I had to choose a beer to drink for the rest of my life, this would be in my top 3. It has a great flavor, strong, but not overwhelming. It has a coffee nose, a mead body, and a coffee finish. As you drink it, it gets sweeter, but not in a bad way.

I highly enjoyed it, and braved a blizzard to drive over an hour just to try this. If you get the chance to even get a sip, do it.

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Photo of davednyc
4.82/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is one of the finest that I've had recently. This beer poured the darkest brown imaginable. Hints of chocolate and coffee pervade both the smell and the taste.

I had to do a double-take concerning the 9.0% ABV, since this has such a smooth taste. I believe that this is a limited edition, so I'm already planning on running back to the distributor to lay my hands on a few more bottles.

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Photo of grubas
4.82/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

At first it appeared a bit too viscious and sticky for me, as I tend to not like dark beers. The gesho made a clear presence and what I would call a fantastic aftertaste. Several hops lovers did not enjoy this beer, and I would not recommend it to them.

It has a very coffee/chocolaty taste, and was a very heavy beer, but the alcohol was pretty much completely hidden.

I found it very drinkable, and as a fan of Miles Davis found the funkiness of the mouth taste, which was a bit short, but would have been overpowering had it lasted too long, to be fantastic.

I would consider this to be one of my favourite beers ever, as it was complex, subtle, smooth, and mostly fitting of it's name sake. Although a beer that would fit "Pharoah's Dance" would be a bit too much in my opinion.

Also, considering that I have been awaiting a "Bitches Brew" beer, this was not only something I wanted, but a very pleasant and good beer to take the name.

My only complaint would be that the syrupy appearance of the beer was mildly disconcerting at first, but that faded after tasting it.

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Photo of jbertsch
4.81/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This is a cellared bottle from batch 1.

Pours black with a mocha-colored head that’s not large. Minor lacing.

Poured some of it into a tulip and some of it into a large snifter to see if there was difference in aroma. Not a huge difference, but the snifter provided a fuller aroma. I got chocolate, a lot of hickory, some smoke, and a note of molasses.

The flavor provides some chocolate but not as much as I smelled on the nose. The chocolate is mixed well with hickory and slightly bitter espresso. On the back end there’s more of an earthy woods factor and a touch of honey.

Smooth mouthfeel. Silky, maybe from the honey. Not super heavy. Just right.

One of the better RIS I’ve ever had. I would love to get another.

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Photo of marieli
4.8/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Bottle. I really liked this stout. Poured dark brown and looked great. Smelled subtly wonderful and inviting. Packed lots of flavor; nice blend of coffee, chocolate and malts. Started it a little cold which caused a slight bitter finish, but it warmed up nice and smooth. I recommend this beer and look forward to another some day.

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Photo of TaekwonDylan
4.8/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Wow! This craft is exceptional. I loved this one as soon as I poured it into my glass. The appearance is of rich dark chocolate, with a beautiful tan head to cap. A pleasant nose of chocolatey molasses and espresso with hints of crystalized brown sugar, make your eyes roll back into your head. The taste is perfectly balanced with roasted malts and an undertone of honey, but very silky and luscious on the palate-Not sticky sweet. The carbonation dances in the glass, and tickles the tongue- just enough. Extremely drinkable for a 9% ABV stout. Somewhere Miles Davis is grinning.Mmmm Yummy.

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Photo of thebrood1987
4.8/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

It smells very roasted with some sweetness in the background. It almost reminds me of the Dogfish Head Indian Brown Ale with the way it smells but this has more sweetness in it. The taste is so smooth and rich its ridiculous. Like I said before it has that taste of the Dogfish Head Indian Brown ale but with less carbonation (if any at all) and less hops. You can tell they not only use the hops but something different to give it that different bitter taste on the back end which would be that gesho root. The honey they use in this doesn't so much give it a honey taste but rounds out the beer by making it smooth, thick and silky in texture. Stouts aren't my very favorite but this to me is the 90 minute IPA of stouts. With that higher alcohol content and richer full body taste. I'm really liking this one and haven't found a limited release or year round release from Dogfish Head that I don't like. I usually wouldn't have many of the flavors and ingredients they use in their beer but whenever I have their crazy recipe beers I always end up liking them because of the blend and the way they use them in the beer. This is strongly recommended to anyone that likes Imperial Stouts or wants a full bodied complex high alcohol content beer.

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Miles Davis' Bitches Brew from Dogfish Head Brewery
92 out of 100 based on 884 ratings.