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Miles Davis' Bitches Brew - Dogfish Head Brewery

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

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BA SCORE
93
outstanding

2,997 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,997
Reviews: 836
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 11.69%
Wants: 425
Gots: 1,077 | FT: 55
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:
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 added by: TheFightfan1 on 06-13-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,997 | Reviews: 836 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of cosmicevan
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%

Poured from 750 mL into chalice.

A - Poured a silky black with a light brown chocolatey head. Looks milky and creamy. Looks really great!

S - Roasted malts. Vanilla, milk, cream. chocolate/cocoa, and a bit coffee like. Smells really inviting.

T - Awesome. Taste follows the nose. Malty and creamy. Cocoa and nut like. A bit of caramel and a nice mix of vanilla.

M - Very balanced and smooth. Rich and thick but not overly so.

D - Super drinkable. Alc is REALLY well hidden. Fantastic brew. Was really surprised at how good this one was.

cosmicevan, Sep 06, 2010
Photo of kingcrowing
4.28/5  rDev +2.1%

750ml Champagne bottle poured into a Dogfish Head Signature glass, bottled in 2010.

Picked this up yesterday, and I recently got the album as well, so I'm pairing these two together. Both the album and the brew are totally new to me, so this should be a fairly cool experiment.

This pours a nice fairly thick dark brown with some light ruby tones, it looks a bit like a brown ale more than an Imperial Stout by color alone anyways. Very little head on the pour, but slowly some really nice cool deep dark brown/orange foam comes from nowhere. After sitting for a second the foam forms a nice small rim around the edge of the glass and a nice thick oval begins to form in the center of the glass due to the Dogfish Head logo etching. It starts to slowly branch out towards the edges, very cool.

Nose is a bit different too, you've got some sweet rich malty chocolate notes, along with some syrup that reminds me a bit of Karo that my grandma uses on pancakes. It's got a roasted bitter feel to it as well, somewhat like coffee or burnt bead. There is a bit of pineapple fruitiness to the nose as well that's reminiscent to Kate the Great, very light fruitiness that's quite pleasant.

First sip is a bit cold, but this is actually a quite tasty Imperial Stout to have slightly chilled. First thing I'm noticing is that it's a bit watery and light especially compared to something like World Wide Stout. The carbonation is the next thing I notice, and it's really fantastic. It's got a very fine light bite to it that's refreshing and crisp. It finishes off very creamy and rich and thick but with very fine bubbles. It easily makes up for the slightly watery body, makes for a beer that's more refreshing and easily drinkable given the high abv.

Now lets think about the taste a bit more, just like this crazy album, the flavor is the craziest part of this beer. It's got a lot of your very standard solid Russian Imperial Stout flavors, the chocolate, the coffee, the toffee, and roasted barley. But as always with Dogfish Head (and Miles Davis) there's more to it than that. There's a nice light honey sweetness to it that's really different, it's also got almost a bit of a rum barrel character to it, but I'm not sure where that's coming from. It's very fresh and there is that light fresh fruitiness to it that I picked up on the nose but it's more played down than in Kate the Great for sure. it is a bit of pineapple and lime at first, but on the finish you get almost a bit of old apricots to it that's fairly unique.

It's a bit hard to score this to style as it is different, but for Dogfish Heads large bottle limited edition brews this one is I'd say surprisingly tame. Although I come to expect crazy stuff from Dogfish head this sometimes leads to some beers that although are cool in concept and perhaps are tasty to drink, they aren't beers that I'd want to either A) drink a whole bottle by myself in one sitting, or B) buy very often. This beer however defies both of those. This is really quite damn drinkable and if this was converted to 12oz bottles (perhaps along the lines of Immort or Burton Baton as far as seasonality and price), this is something that I'd pick up fairly often. I think I'd compare this to Old Rasputin, it's strong, complex and yet still highly drinkable.

Seek this beer out, it's very good and I'd say to Dogfish Head, don't make this a one time release. The album is pretty damn cool and I really thank Dogfish Head for introducing me to this, it's some great music for work. As far as music goes, I can't think of any other artist that pairs as well with Dogfish Head as Miles Davis.

kingcrowing, Sep 06, 2010
Photo of dspoonrt
3.68/5  rDev -12.2%

As is the trend, I'm sure, I'm enjoying this beer while listening to Miles' Bitches Brew album. The music is vibrant and varied, creating a nice atmosphere to sample the brew at hand.

The beer pours a beautiful pitch black with an attractive layer of brown head. Like some others, I didn't get much of a nose from it. There are subtle malty notes and a definite burntness to the aroma, but it doesn't overwhelm the senses.

While stouts aren't my favorite style of beer, I do enjoy one every now and then. This one tastes like a pretty standard stout - lots of toasted malt, some bitterness. The mouthfeel is nice and smooth, but I might have liked it to be a bit thicker considering it is a fairly strong blend of stouts.

Overall, this is a very drinkable beer, but it does not differentiate itself from its style the way that many Dogfish Head beers do.

dspoonrt, Sep 05, 2010
Photo of cindyjeffsmith
4.45/5  rDev +6.2%

appearance: Jet black with a creamy tan head.
smell: Dark chocolate, honey.
taste: Very interesting. Smooth as silk. starts sweet with a slightly bitter finish. A different kind of bitter, guess that's the gesho.
mouthfeel: Hmmm, decadent silky.
drinkability: Very smooth. Hard to believe this is a 9%'er.
Great beer, great musician. Listening and Miles and downing a DFH work of art. Doesn't get much better than this.

cindyjeffsmith, Sep 05, 2010
Photo of Haybeerman
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%

A: Black color; no kight. Poured a 1 finger chocolate head that settled to a thick skim. Lacing washed down the glass.

S: Toasted malts; chocolate, dark fruit and burnt toast. Sweet honey flavors and a variety of spices.

T: Just like the smell; very complex. Beer changes character in big swings as it warms. Honey and spice in the middle linger through an earthy bitter finish.

M: Light body. Moderate carbonation. Very dry. Masls the alcohol pretty well.

D: Interestingly complex. Definitely a sipper.

Haybeerman, Sep 05, 2010
Photo of IronCitySteve
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%

A: Pours a dark black color, no light coming through. Provides a 2 finger thick dark brown foam head. There is some spotty lacing.

S: A decent amount of malty sweetness. Chocolate, honey, burnt coffee and alcohol.

T: There is a nice malt presence. The flavors combine nicely, but the alochol is more prevalent than I would have expected. Overall, the taste is quite sweet.

M: Leaves a sweet creamy taste on the palate with a hint of alcohol.

D: A really nice RIS. A nice ABV makes this a perfect beer for the fall or winter.

IronCitySteve, Sep 05, 2010
Photo of MbpBugeye
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%

Im not familiar with Miles Davis' music, but always up for something new, I have Bitches Brew playing on Youtube in the next tab. I would say what I am hearing goes quite well with what I am seeing, smelling, tasting and feeling with this beer. The music itself has tons to discover, much like this stout.

A- Solid and soulful right out of the bottle with a larger than life coffee cream colored head. Its leaving lots of jazzy lacing all over the glass. A frothy collar rests around the edge of my snifter. The ebony body stands strong and opposes any light.

S- As the beer warms, so does the jazz fusion playing in the background. I smell a sweet and sassy beer. Honey, roasted malts, chocolate, dark fruits, bizarre spices and juxtapositions. A little bit of creaminess, a touch of earthiness and a lot improvisation.

T- This beer is every bit as unpredictable, vivid and off kilter as the music it pays homage to. Sweetness and roasty bitterness battle back and forth. Unconventional spiciness weaves in and out. A ginger like snappiness, roasted nuts, honey sweetness, earthy hops, charcoal, and African American culture.

M- Very very dry, the body is splashy and not quite full. Carbonation dances about the mouth.

This beer, paired with Miles Davis' album is an enveloping experience to be had.

MbpBugeye, Sep 05, 2010
Photo of jlindros
3.93/5  rDev -6.2%

A big 2 finger thick dark and fluffy head fades slowly nice and long. The beer is essentially pitch black.

The nose comes on with interesting and strange aromas, very malty, roasty, a little smoke, some chocolate, a little honey and caramel, light aromatic flower like scents with some strange spices, a little light bitterness too.

The taste is also weird and interesting, some spices, creamy chocolate milk, malted milk ball big time, some honey and caramel, nutty, seems a little spicy too, chewy malts, dark chocolate, roasty, a little toffee, so many flavors.

A medium body, somewhat thick, and decent carbonation.

It finishes semi sweet with lingering spicy and chocolate malted milk ball, sweet, light spices still, a little nutty, a little honey as well, and some weird malt flavor that I can't really get, almost like a rye but not quite.

jlindros, Sep 05, 2010
Photo of oglmcdgl
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%

A bottle split with sourbatchkid and pour into my trusty duvel tulip.

A- a stiff pour produces two fingers of coffee and cream tightly packed head that settles rather quickly leaving a few spots of lace and a solid ring. Deep dark brown black in color with just a touch of light making it through at the very edges giving it a warm mohogany glow.

S- dark roasted malts and coffee with chickory and blackstrap molasses. There's a earthiness buried in there.

T- this is all about the malts with this one as it should be. Complex, dark, and roasty, with coffee and burnt brown sugar. Some anise and a light cocoa powder hit. Not getting much of the honey but there is a sweetness that balances out the deep roast character. Dark fruits come with some warming. Hops are buried by the malts but do come off a bit with a earthy vegetative glimmer. Long but clean linger.

M- on the fuller side of body but not thick or syrupy. Nice active carb that goes a long way to lighten things up and keep it all moving. Small touch of heat as it warms.

D- this is a straight forward ris that show cases the malts beautifully. Very drinkable and enjoyable. One of the best for this brewery in my opinion, not to mention one of my favorite albums ever made, truly a work of art. Its awesome this was brewed in celebration of Miles. If peeing your pants is cool consider me miles davis.

oglmcdgl, Sep 05, 2010
Photo of Thorpe429
4.43/5  rDev +5.7%

On tap at the Dogfish Alehouse in Falls Church - 09.04.2010.

Pours a deep brown-chestnut with a nice tan head that leaves around a good amount of lacing. Smells very nice with some roasted malt, anise, good amount of sweetness, honey, and a touch of fruitiness. Taste is much the same, with the honey coming out a bit more. Mouthfeel is fairly full, although not entirely viscous. Great drinkability. A very unique brew, and I'll be picking up quite a few for the cellar.

Thorpe429, Sep 05, 2010
Photo of djmichaelk
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%

On tap at the always-wonderful City Beer Store. Served in 6oz snifters.

A - Coffee-black, with a thin one-finger head the color of a good mocha. Solid retention, with some thin lacing.

S - Very nice -- some dark roast coffee, maybe french roast. A hint of licorice, then lots of dark chocolate and cocao. Spicy hops, and finally some vanilla. Absolutely outstanding.

T - Almost as good as the nose. The chocolate is front-and-center, and the coffee moves more to the back. There's an earthiness somewhere in there, and maybe some oatmeal or Cheerio hanging out. Love it.

M - Thick and creamy. Very much as I would like to have any stout. Sweet in the beginning with a somewhat dry finish, which is not unwelcome.

D - The alcohol is nowhere to be found. Although the glasses were not huge (6oz or so), I went through a few.

O - When I went in, I thought, "well, I've heard about this, maybe I'll try a glass and then move on to some others." Before I knew it I had finished my fourth, and could've had another few if time (and my poor, poor wallet) had allowed. This is absolutely the best beer I've ever had from DFH, and I hope they make more of it.

djmichaelk, Sep 05, 2010
Photo of chefkevlar
4.55/5  rDev +8.6%

Poured from a 750 bottle into a Dogfish snifter

A: Pours a think dark black liquid with an inch or so of tan head. The head settles to a thin layer but leaves nice lacing.

S: Smells of toasted grains and some sweetness jump from the glass. I'm also picking up some herbal notes (something like basil ). There are notes of chocolate and coffee as well. Only the slightest hint of alcohol shows through after the beer warms a bit

T: There is a interesting blend of flavors here...with sweetness from the honey portion of the beer and some roasted bitterness from the stout component. There's also a very complex combination of herbal and spice flavors running throughout.

M: Rich full mouthfell with a light tingling carbonation. The beer leaves a coating in the mouth which lasts a while after drinking it.

D: Dangerously drinkable for a 9% beer that comes in 750 bottles. The blend of sweet vs sour with herbal notes is very tasty.

chefkevlar, Sep 05, 2010
Photo of mondegreen
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%

750ml into a DFH Signature Glass

Pours pitch black with a frothy tan persistant head. Lots of lacing on this one.

Aromas are sweet honey an roasty RIS with a touch of spice, presumably from the genshu root.

Taste is an interesting twist on the style. The honey beer portion of this brew compliments the traditional RIS components perfectly. The roasted flavors stand in perfect balance with honey sweetness and slight medicinal/herbal aftertaste.

Mouth is full bodied and creamy. Carries the potent flavors with ease.

Goes down smooth, but begs to be savored. Wonderful brew from DFH!

mondegreen, Sep 04, 2010
Photo of SFLpunk
3.7/5  rDev -11.7%

750mL champagne-style capped bottle. Just released in VT today.

Pours a gloopy black with some creamy tan head. Nose smells a little thin, the honey and lots of coffee-ground aromas. Not super impressed with the nose.

Palate is bigger than I expected given the light aromas. Fat and rich and then WHAMO! lots of coffee-like bitterness. Does this contain coffee? It says a blend of stouts...

Looong finish. Not my favorite from them, but really interesting and I think this will be well received.

SFLpunk, Sep 04, 2010
Photo of STEG
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%

Room temperature, poured from a bottle into a mikasa widemouth glass.

Appearance - Pours jet black as far as I can tell, rocky darker brown tan head rises and then falls relatively quickly into a layer of fine creamy looking bubbles.

Smell - This smells very medicinal to me, but the RIS characteristics still remain, chocolate toasty malt and coffee are still present smells a bit like burnt toast too. The medicinal smells I get are cumin and mint? wtf? maybe even scezhuan peppercorns?

Taste - You get immediately ht with the coffee, toasted malt, and chocolate as you would with a normal imperial stout but then it moves into an alternative mediciney phase. Where there are tons of different flavors playing around here. This is really interesting, the mint smell is gone but you get the cooling effect mint has is there, cumin and sarawak black pepper also linger all throughout the progression.

Mouthfeel - creamy and smooth even from the bottle. It still has a fair bit of carbonation to it as well which keeps it interesting.

Drinkability - Alcohol isn't there but the medicinal properties make it something that you may need to get used to. I'll stick with a bomber but would love to see how these flavors develop with age. Damn, time for another vertical....

STEG, Sep 04, 2010
Photo of bluejacket74
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%

750 ml bottle. Served in a DFH signature glass, the beer pours dark brown/black with about a half inch brown head. Head retention and lacing are both good. Aroma is nice and sweet, it smells like chocolate, honey, roasted malt, and caramel. It tastes like mostly like bittersweet and milk chocolate, roasted malt and honey, with some licorice, smoke, coffee, and dark fruit also noticable. Mouthfeel/body is medium/full, it's rich and creamy with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is very good, I found myself finishing this bottle quicker than I thought I would. It's smooth and quite enjoyable. I think this is a pretty good overall brew, I'll have to get a couple more bottles of this soon!

bluejacket74, Sep 03, 2010
Photo of Gavage
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%

Appearance: pours a dark brown almost black color with a short 1/4" head that falls quickly.

Smell: roasted malts, honey sweetness, and dark chocolates are easy to detect. Alcohol is mildly noticeable.

Taste: roasted malts, prunes, hint of licorice, honey, and bitter dark chocolate are up front. Alcohol and a moderate bitterness rounds it out.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Lightly crisp to start, smooth to finish. Light dryness late. Aftertaste is long lasting.

Drinkability: this is a real slow drinking beer. Huge flavors and a unique flavor profile makes this an interesting beer to have.

Gavage, Sep 03, 2010
Photo of vandemonian
3.85/5  rDev -8.1%

They had this on tap at Gaithersburg Dogfish Head. It was served in a snifter and had an almost black colour and a good head that was surprisingly long lasting. The smell was not impressive at all. When it first enters your mouth it's surprisingly neutral, but after a few seconds you notice some nice chocolate flavour that morphs into a bitter coffee aftertaste. I enjoyed it a lot; very interesting.

vandemonian, Sep 03, 2010
Photo of billab914
3.63/5  rDev -13.4%

On tap at the Falls Church Dogfish Alehouse. Poured into a 10oz snifter. Poured black with a thin tan ring clinging to the edges of the glass. Just a bit of lacing was left on the glass as I drank it.

The aroma has a pretty bold dark chocolate and roasty flavor to it, but definitely comes across more on the sweeter side. There is also a faint, almost fruity and tart flavor in the background.

The taste also shows the dark chocolate with more caramel and molasses flavors adding to the malty sweetness. The honey isn't evident although I'm sure it helps produce the sweetness. Just a bit of roasty and bitter flavors to it. That faint tart, fruity flavor comes through a bit as well in the taste. maybe it's the gesho root as I don't think I know what that is supposed to taste like.

The mouthfeel is on the thicker side with carbonation being low. Drinkability was decent, I enjoyed it overall. It was a very interesting imperial stout and different then the others out there. Cool and interesting beer, but nothing spectacular overall.

billab914, Sep 03, 2010
Photo of womencantsail
3.2/5  rDev -23.6%

A: The pour is nearly black with a huge tan colored head that eventually settles down to a thin layer.

S: The nose is quite roasty with lots of sweet caramel, honey, and chocolate notes. A bit of a rubber aroma too, which is not too pleasing.

T: A very, very sweet flavor with tons of caramel and chocolate. There is a some mild roast, but definitely overwhelmed by the sweetness. Somewhat alcoholic with a solvent flavor that is all too "popular" in DFH beers.

M: The body is medium, nothing special, with a moderate level of carbonation.

D: Pretty underwhelming, I must say, and nowhere near as great as the Miles Davis album for which this was named.

womencantsail, Sep 03, 2010
Photo of lovindahops
4.45/5  rDev +6.2%

Ahhhh yes, a new dfh brew! And an ris as well

A- pours a perfect opaque brew with a mocha looking head and some nice resin on the side

S- wow. Roasted malt, chocolate, nuts, and some sweet honey. These are some mouth watering scents! The malt scent is epic

T- same as the scent. The flavors are off the charts. A sweet honey theme is piggy backed by superior malt flavor. The taste is off the charts

M- smooth and creamy

D- this is very very drinkable. You can put these down repeatidly and smoothly. Great job dfh!

lovindahops, Sep 02, 2010
Photo of jamie2dope
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%

It has been a while since I have anything from the folks at Dogfish Head. Thanks to the nice staff at Downtown Wine and Spirits for pulling this out of the back for me. Bitches Brew pours out a cool blackish color, with a finger of white heading. Chocolate and cola hit me first in the nose, followed soon after by spice (possibly the root used here?) and more of the cola. I get more of the same from the flavor, along with some licorice, and pepper. What really strikes me is how smooth and silky this beer is. The flavor profile is also extremely mild, with each taste working with the other pretty seamlessly. The ABV is right where it should be with this one; drinkable but with not enough alcohol to completely knock you out. Overall one of the better beers I have had from DFH in a while. They should make this year round. Also, I plan on holding on to the bottle for the cool artwork. Cheers

jamie2dope, Sep 02, 2010
Photo of prg1976
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%

Pours a deep brown, almost black. A frothy tan head dissipates quickly. No lacing, slight retention around the edge.

Smell is sweet. A little chocolate, a little black licorice. There's a good bit of alcohol aroma in there too.

Tastes fairly sweet as well. Dark chocolate...a little bit of sweetness with a bit of bitterness. Raisins, some oaky-ness. The alcohol isn't as noticeable in the taste.

Medium body, still a lot of carbonation even after the head dissipated so quickly. Still pretty smooth.

Very drinkable. Not a chugging beer, but great for sipping. Will probably get even better as it warms.

I had the test batch for this (Voodoo Down) at the brewpub and it wasn't as sweet. This is really good, and I'm sure it would age quite well.

prg1976, Sep 02, 2010
Photo of urwithdave
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

On draft at Mr. Beerys. I'm glad I made it in time before the keg was kicked. Poured into a large tulip.

A- pours black in color, no shocker there. A large 3 finger mocha head. It recedes and the glass is topped off. It is served with one finger of head that also recedes to a ring and stays for the duration. Some spotty lacing left behind.

A- roasted malts and chocolate. A slight hint of black licorice.

T- Milk chocolate and roasted malts dominate. There is a sweetness present that I assume is from the honey. There is a bit of licorice and a touch of coffee also present. As the brew warms, a slight metallic taste becomes somewhat distracting. However, it is really very mild and does not take away to much from the overall flavor. It keeps me from giving it a 4.5 here.

M- smooth and creamy. On the fuller side of medium. Lightly carbonated, but not under carbonated. A nice smooth finish.

D- this goes down extremely easy. I will have no problem killing a bottle by myself.

urwithdave, Sep 02, 2010
Photo of LiquidCucumber
4.15/5  rDev -1%

A - Black with a foamy mocha head that leaves very quickly, but always leaves a ring around the edges.

S - Roasty malt with a touch of chalky chocolate/coffee smell. Also something I cannot put my finger on, but maybe it's the more exotic components of this brew.

T - Mostly that malt that hits hard with chocolate and coffee, a definite hint of honey as well as tobacco and soy sauce. Also still something weird in the flavor that I cannot seem to place... it's kind of getting irritating, but not unpleasant.

M - Creamy and smooth. A bit lighter than I had expected, but still very much an RIS.

D - Goes down quick, so it's damn good! Not the best RIS I've had, but a really nice brew from DFH, who didn't seem to have a mainstream RIS until now, props!

LiquidCucumber, Sep 02, 2010
Miles Davis' Bitches Brew from Dogfish Head Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 2,997 ratings.