Scratch Beer 41 - 2011 (Cacaoabunga Redux) - Tröegs Brewing Company

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Scratch Beer 41 - 2011 (Cacaoabunga Redux)Scratch Beer 41 - 2011 (Cacaoabunga Redux)

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42 Ratings
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Ratings: 42
Reviews: 30
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 11.06%
Wants: 4
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Tröegs Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  6.60% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Deuane on 02-12-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

A redux of Scratch 27 this brew is a chocolate stout with 50 pounds of roasted cacao nibs and a healthy dose of vanilla beans, Simcoe and Galena hops, giving it a described "blast of bittersweet chocolate and a rich finish". This is another collaboration with Scharffen Berger Chocolate.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 42 | Reviews: 30
Reviews by SFLpunk:
Photo of SFLpunk
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Stakem for this one! 12oz brown glass pry-top bottle. Scratch batch "Stout - 41."

Pours a thin black with even thinner off-white head. Nose is perfumed with chocolate and the suggestion of a rich, chocolate liqueur. Palate is medium bodied and biting on the front palate. Maybe because of the hops? Flick on the tip of the tongue and then wide open dusty, whole bean cocoa and coffees all over the board - earthy and velvety. Great flavors here! Mouthfeel is pretty good, maybe it's just too cold.

Notes: Wasn't expecting this awesome of a beer. Well done!

More User Reviews:
Photo of OStrungT
4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a murky dark brown color with a thin light brown head. The head fades slowly, leaving almost no lace.

This beer has a nice mild roasted malt aroma. Some caramel amd molasses. I can also detect some figs. I also get a milk chocolate aroma.

This beer tastes like cocoa powder. I taste some caramel malt as well, but the dominate flavoe is chocolate. Mild though, and not cloying.

This beer is smooth. It is low in carbontion, fitting the style nicely. It leaves a chocolate aftertaste on the way down.

This beer would probably make a good session beer. It tastes good, its mild, and it isnt too high in alcohol.

Overall: This beer is pretty good. Thanks to Sbaldwin for the chance to try this one.

Photo of Troegman
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got it when released at the brewery.

Pours like a nice stout should with a nice tan creamy head on it.
Has a sweet chocolate nose with some vanilla in there as well. Coffee is in the back round.

I'm tasting a nice vanilla and chocolate combo with some malt/coffee base. First bottle I had seemed too sweet(two weeks ago) but had another last night and liked it more.

Has a medium body to it, not as heavy as FBS. Carbonation seems correct.

You really don't taste the alcohol. The more I drink it the more I like it, but maybe only one at a time.

Photo of Kegatron
3.75/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours black in the glass, with a tight finger of burnt and reddish looking dark mocha head. This sticks around with a ½ finger of foamy richness, which throws up a robust cascade of lacing that then hangs on the sides in thick spotty swathes. The aroma has a thick sweet tang to it of chocolate and vanilla, with is enveloped in some dark roasted coffee character (there is a touch of acrid smokiness to this) and a green smelling leafiness.

The taste is sweet with chocolate, caramel, milky sugars, and vanilla up front, before giving way to a fairly sharp bitterness here, courtesy of some citric hops and dark crunchy roast. This is maybe a bit too bitter across the back of the profile, as this ends with a deeply dry and burnt finish that lingers strongly. The mouthfeel is medium-fuller bodied, with a firm sharpness to the carbonation that then gets creamier towards the back. I actually taste just a smidge of alcohol in the profile here but the overall feel definitely has a bit of a warm heft to it.

I think that I might have enjoyed the first incarnation of this beer a bit more, as I remember it placing more of an emphasis on those sweet chocolate, cream, and vanilla flavors and a little less on the more burnt and bitter aspects of the base Porter. Don't get me wrong, there are still lots of things to like here but I would have liked to see a bit more overt sweetness present. So they've worked this beer twice now. I wonder if we might be seeing this as a bottled seasonal at some point down the line? Heck, I'd be happy just to see it every February!

Photo of dfclav
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter.

A - pours a dark brown, almost black color with a very nice frothy two finger head that leaves creamy lacing all about.

S - the smell is of deep roasted malts, dark chocolate and vanilla that gives it a mocha-like smell. I didn't read about coffee being added here but it sure smells like it was used in moderation. The vanilla isn't as big as I thought it'd be, but it's there just before the boozy twang sets it off. The hops used here give off a very citric smell that go well with the beer. 

T - no, no coffee here. Very rich cocoa flavor and vanilla. Almost like how melted chocolate tastes. The flavors are well-blended. The booze is there but integrates well with the flavors. Aftertaste is splendid, like milk chocolate and hops.

M - a bit confusing here. Has potential to be more rich and complex but falls pretty short. No real twang from hops, good blend of malt character though. This really reminds me more of a schwarzbier then an American stout. It leans toward the light category in mouthfeel and the citric twang leads me to believe the hops played a large part in the bittering here. Finish is slightly dry with a very good aftertaste.

D - very good! I would love to session this beer early on in a tasting. It does well to pinpoint the initial flavors many dark beers have and doesn't wear your palate out. If they decided to bottle this I think it would make a good addition to a winter lineup. 

Photo of akorsak
3.8/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 12 oz bottle pulled from the cellar.

A: The stout Is dark, a wholesome black color that betrays nothing else. A tan head, more like coffee and cream, is thin and wispy.

S: Chocolate aromas are strong but not dominant. Instead they are sweet and smooth, well at home amongst the darker malts. A few stray vanilla strands liventhe nose up.

T: Vanilla and chcolate together, a winning team. The vanilla beans are rich, lush and sugary. They are paired with abundant chocolate, semi-sweet as compared to the vanilla. Spices follow, probably not intentional but a pleasant side effect. In total, the ale tastes light, not a heavy winter's stout. The dark roasted aspects of the stout are lost amongst the cacao and vanilla.

M: The mouthfeel is about right for a stout, darker but not burnt. Reduce this one down a bit and drizzle over vanilla ice cream? Sounds delicious doesn't it?

Photo of mikesgroove
4.18/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It was the scratch beer festival night! i had spent a good deal of time collecting these and finally tracked down the last of what i needed and put them all down in a massive tasting. Split with my brother in law and his buddy on 5/6, these were all split into 6 ounce samplers.

The pour was fantastic. Huge tan head rises up above an entirely black body. Wonderful retention leaves it several inches high and deposits tons of side glass web like lace. The smooth vanilla and cocoa aroma melds wonderfully with hints of coffee and a touch of molasses. Very complex here. As i take a sip the huge full bodied feel comes in waves over the tongue and settles down with a wonderful coating feeling of sweet chocolate and vanilla. As this fades though a very nice bite of hops comes in and seals the deal. Super sessionable, it was far more complex then the ABV would suggest,

Photo of JamnesCameron
4.47/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Le Cheval Blanc pint glass. Pours a jet black with deep ruby highlights around the edges of the glass. Slight, tan head that stands up.

Aromas of dark cocoa, vanilla, and dark roasted malts. Hints of chocolate covered orange peel.

Flavors of rich dark bittersweet chocolate, some of that chocolate covered orange peel you get on the nose. Some vanilla and dark roasted malts, and hints of dark roast coffee. Finish is medium, with bittersweet cocoa lingering.

Mouthfeel is medium, a mouthcoating light bitterness.

Overall, an outstanding flavored stout. Deep rich cocoa flavors really make this beer, especially paired with the citrus hops.

Photo of iadler
2.58/5  rDev -36.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Exitmusic00 and I decided to crack open the 3 random Scratch beers tonight we received in our first box from the tasting partners bif a couple months back. Thanks to our senders??

A- Pours a dark brown with a nice two finger mocha head that dissipates into a thin cap with some spots of lacing left behind.

S- Initially, it has a nice aroma of rich milk and dark chocolate, coffee beans and red cherry but then a soy sauce and bitter and earthy aroma of grass and dirt emerge.

T- Old coffee grounds, some grassy bitterness, roasted malt, soy sauce and a hint of dark chocolate. Odd with a slightly tart/bitter taste. Reminds me of old coffee that was left out for a few hours.

M- Low carbonation and body. A thin watery mouthfeel that finishes with some roasted malt.

O- Age has simply not helped this beer, which isn't a surprise. Very thin and watered down stout. Maybe it tasted better when fresh, but I will never know.

Photo of bigfnjoe
4.36/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Thanks to my buddy Ben for giving me this bottle from his stash after I couldn't get any

A- pours jet black with a dark and beautiful three finger brown head. Real puffy. Lacing all the way around the glass. Beautiful.

S- chocolate! Smells pretty great. Not getting any of the vanilla, though...disappointing there

T- getting some bitterness from the chocolate, and also some sweetness from the vanilla bean...the combination creates a nice flavor profile that tastes like a nice ice cream swirl

M- I know we on BA hate these terms, but it seems very creamy and smooth. Real chewy. Not overwhelmingly thick, too

D- it's tasty for sure, and I really wish this was a full-time brew. One of the best scratches Troegs has done

Photo of jlindros
4.07/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hand bottled from a growler pour thanks to dfclav.

Very light fizzy head, most likely lighter due to hand bottling, thick essentially pitch black beer, fairly thick with some nice legs on the sides of the glass.

Nose is interesting tons of chocolate, hot cocoa, baker's chocolate, dark chocolate, some vanilla even, caramel, vanilla beans, smooth and rich and super heavy, some coffee and roast, toasted nuts, wow, intense!

Taste seems a little thinner than I expected from the nose and appearance, but not bad. It brings a lot more chocolate again, cocoa powder, a really high % cacao dark chocolate, bitter dark chocolate and baker's chocolate, some vanilla beans, little caramel and mocha, touch of coffee and roast, a slight gritty feel. The finish is fairly quick, lots of nice chocolate, cocoa bean, and rich, bit of vanilla.

Mouth is medium bodied, lighter than I expected, with very light carbonation, again due to hand bottling I'm sure.

Drink is good, creamy smooth, no real booze, a little thin on the body, nice dark chocolate flavors, could have used more carbonation but not the beer's fault.

Photo of TMoney2591
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a flared pokal.

Thanks to the Central PA group from the Gang Bang BIF for this bottle!

The Scratch Beer Dash keeps on truckin'. This leg was tasted side-by-side with the original Cocaoabunga to see how they measured up against each other. This younger version pours a very dark garnet-brown topped by over a finger of dark tan foam. The nose comprises rich dark chocolate powder, dark greens, roasted malts, mocha, and light buttery toffee. The taste brings in more of the same, though the chocolate is more earthy, the bitterness is amped slightly, and some graham crackers are thrown in for good measure. The body is a straight medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a smooth-ish feel. Overall, a slightly richer, more bitter, and a bit spicier version o the original Cocaoabunga. I'd say it's a slight improvement.

Photo of womencantsail
4.3/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Mike for sending me this one. I liked Scratch 27 a lot, so hoping this one is just as good.

A: The pour is almost black with a creamy off-white head.

S: Big time chocolate on the nose with a little bit of a peanut butter smell to it. Plenty of coffee and a nice roasted character to it. Just a hint of vanilla in there. Really enjoyable and solid overall.

T: The chocolate and vanilla flavors and very pronounced here. A nice creaminess and richness. Mild coffee and a little bit of roasted malt character. Just a hint of earthy hops.

M: Medium in body with a smooth, creamy carbonation.

O: Maybe even better than Scratch 27. This was damn good stuff.

Photo of yeahnatenelson
4.15/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Appearance -- Pours an impossible black hue that looks nearly still until a thin mocha foam appears as the last ounce leaves the bottle. Good retention considering how small the head is, plus random smatterings of lace. What a color...

Smell -- Definitive cocoa sweetness, reminiscent of a chocolate malt (milkshake), plus roasted-bordering-acrid malt, and a dark fruit note that resembles mostly dark and sweet cherries. Also a mild earthy hop presence. Very impressive.

Taste -- Dark roast malt is more prominent in the taste than the nose, with their competing characteristics giving a nice balance to the beer. There's also a very intriguing dark fruit character, almost a sweet cherry-meets-blueberry sweetness. Mild earthy hop bittering keeps the malt sweetness in check. Lingering flavors of charred malt and dark chocolate.

Mouthfeel -- medium-light in body with prickly carbonation. Slightly gentler carbonation would have been preferable, but a twirl or two dozen remedies the issue. Probably the low-point of the beer as a whole, but still non-offensive.

Overall -- On the whole, the Tröegs Scratch beers are typically quite good, with #41 being in the upper tier. Really well executed - I can see why they chose to make this one twice. Great chocolate character, but not sickly sweet or one-dimensional, as is often the case for chocolate-infused stouts. Impressive, and definitely a contender for a new seasonal.

Photo of Khazadum
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Nice creamy froth appears in my pint glass! Did a good washing before I grabbed this bad boy to warm up a bit, by the way. Tons of retention, nice emulsive top with middle-aged mom cellulitis appearance from top down. Lacing is pretty decent. Little sporadic here and there, but otherwise good. Everything sits above this inky darkness... soy style, with the amber crimson hues at the base and edges.

S- Caramel for sure. Bit of brown sugar. Nice nutty sweet characteristic. Kind of earthen swing on the back end of it. Totally solid malt bill with just a bit of roast going on as well. I feel like there might be a hop power on the last flutes of air to flow into my nostrils.. something sharp, but I disregard that as a fleeting hallucination.

T- First impressions are kicking! We have at once a nutty and sweet combination. It has this brown sugar and molasses power with possible milk chocolate resemblances. Mmmm, cocoa powder chocolate as well! A milky sweetness that reminds me of lactose sugars. Middle presence is mostly caramel covered brown sugar and the finish is mild.

It has an almost non-existent hop presence, but it does show up for a brief chat at the last hurrah of the tasting segment. Gives me a little kick in the shins of bitterness. This was followed by a slap on the back of the hand from a roasted, folgers coffee-like flavor, and then there was no one left for me to converse with. Generally a sweet, flash-fire of a party with no one to help clean anything up.

M- Full bodied, very crisp, almost bitter, on the beginning but that doesn't detract from anything. I feel the carbonation that fades ever so quickly generates the buzz for all the interesting sweet variations on brown sugar. Little bit sticky, but nothing too noticeable.

D- I really like this beer. It is truly tasty. I don't know if I'm super biased after what I just finished drinking not too long ago, but this has rekindled my love of beer as quickly as Mamma destroyed it. Very easy to drink, no alcohol complaints at all. Probably very session-able if I had to give it a guess, 6%. I really wanted to say it was a brown ale, but something is giving me a kick that the roasted character needs addressing. Perhaps just a plain old American Stout? No... no way... I'll stick to Brown Ale for now.

Photo of DoubleSimcoe
4.36/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Troegs Scratch 41 on tap at The Pony Bar in Hell's Kitchen, NY.

Appearance: Served in an eight-ounce glass, it comes with a superb tan head, almost overflowing from the glass. Perfect one-finger height/depth and lots of bubbles. Doesn't die! Outrageous retention, stays on and on. Fantastic lacing as well.

Smell: Some coffee, smooth-but-thick chocolate, roasty bitterness. Subdued compared to the very chocolaty taste. Sugars and cream, very dessert-like, but a high-quality one!

Taste: In the mouth, this beer is chocolate and more chocolate. Not over-the-top like Southern Tier Choklat, though, but smooth and well-balanced instead. If anything, a bit one-dimensional. It's all chocolate! Cocoa powder, chalky and bitter. Some vanilla. Dry finish. Malty-roasty bitterness all around.

Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation, medium body, full flavor. Sticky first, then dry.

Drinkability: Good, perhaps almost very good. Pleasant, never boozy. Well balanced. Engaging, enticing, would love more!

Photo of grover37
4.17/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Churchkey in May 2011. In a snifter. From notes.

Appearance (4): Jet black. Half an inch of light brown head reduces to a thick ring with a thin layer of bubbles dispersed over the top. Some lacing at the top.

Smell (4.5) Straight up cocoa powder. Nesquik, very unique. A bit of sweet chocolate, vanilla is also there but hidden by the cocoa a bit.

Taste (4): Cocoa powder and vanilla up front. A dry middle with more cocoa and vanilla. Slightly sweet and chocolate syrup finish with a lingering vanilla extract flavor.

Mouthfeel (4.5): Creamy. Medium to full body with medium to high carbonation, especially for the style. Drying with lingering cocoa and vanilla on the top of the mouth.

Overall (4): A bit one-dimensional (or two: cocoa and vanilla). Surprisingly dry. Vanilla adds to the complexity while meshing well with the chocolate. A lot like Nesquik which is just OK, not the best drink ever. Nahem said it best: "It's like Hershey's took a shit in your mouth." I'm sure he meant that in the nicest way possible (for someone taking a shit in your mouth).

Photo of orangesol
4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on-tap in the Troegs tasting room into a standard pint.

A - Pours dark as night with a small half finger tall tan head, dissipating down to a light film, leaving no lacing down the glass.

S - Lots of dark roasted malt, chocolate, coffee, and tons of vanilla. More and more roast comes thru as it warms, helping to cut down on the blast of initial sweetness. Pretty good stuff.

T - Bittersweet chocolate, dark roasted malt, and plenty of vanilla dominate this one with hints of coffee, creamy milk sweetness, and some faint hops offering a bit of balance. Finish has quite a bit of sweetness with some lingering dark roast. I really enjoyed this one. I just wish it wasn't so heavy so I could drink more of it.

M - Heavy body and flavor with moderate carbonation. Heavy feel with plenty of chocolatey sweetness. Plenty of lingering sweetness mixed with lots of dark roasted malt.

D - Pretty high. I loved scratch 27 and this one is no different. I always wanted 27 to have a bit more chocolate and that is what 41 is. I just wish it wasn't so heavy, then I could drink this all day.

Photo of AdamGarcia
3.93/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle served in Unibroue tulip.

A: pours just a few shades short of black. Big frothy mocha colored head. Retention is not bad. Lacing is minimal.

S: Aroma is of cocoa powder. Some roasted malt. Just a hint of coffee in the background. Mostly chocolate. Scent is subdued.

T: Sweet milk chocolate right off the bat. Dose of Hershey's syrup. Nice roasty flavors. No discernable hop flavor. Hints of cola. Just a little bit of vanilla bean. Not a lot of complexity, but very good. Straight forward and to the point.

M: Soft, creamy feel. Moderate to low carbonation. Could stand to be a little more viscous.

O: This is tasty and easy to drink. I wouldn't necessarily desire another, but it's something I could see myself revisiting often. I would love to see this break into the Troeg's lineup on a seasonal basis. Don't go to the ends of the Earth to track this down, but don't pass on it if you have the opportunity.

Photo of stakem
4.22/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a shaped pint glass. This brew appears black in color with light brown clarity around the edges. A finger of dark tan head forms about a finger strong and holds fairly well. As it slowly recedes, it leaves spots and patches of lace work on the glass.

The aroma of this brew is sweet with a combination of vanilla and chocolate that is very bold. There is quite a bit of roasted quality coupled with a light citrus aspect that is very reminiscent of coffee beans present throughout the middle of the nose. A slight citrus aspect of hops along with a very light mineral aspect fills out the backend.

The taste of this brew is roasty with bold bittersweet chocolate indications. Vanilla is present upfront along with a bounty of baker's chocolate flavoring that seems to hit multiple percentages of cacao as it moves across the tongue with different sips. Mid palate this brew produces more of a roasted quality that has a light citrus aspect.

This is a medium bodied brew that is very smooth in the feel and modestly carbonated. The vanilla contribution seems to create a bit of pasty quality that lasts inside the mouth. This is a very drinkable and enjoyable brew with quite a depth of chocolate flavoring. The alcohol is hidden quite well for almost 7%, the only indication is a light tingle on the back of the throat. The name Cacaoabunga Redux is absolutely fitting for this brew. It is very reminiscent of Scratch 27 which was a brew that I really liked and enjoyed even more recently with about a year of age on it. Scratch 41 is just like 27 but with more intense chocolate flavoring. Well done.

Photo of number1bum
4.12/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I don't recall being terribly wild about Scratch 27 so hopefully this redo is improved.

Pours a very dark brown, nearly black, with a creamy two inches of tan head. Head keeps pretty well, settling slowly although eventually leaving just a thin, patchy lace, but also keeping some nice rings of stick on the sides.

Smell has a nice chocolaty quality to it, milky and sweet but with a dark element as well. There is also some coffee and roasted malt

Taste is not quite as sweet as the aroma but features the same elements. Chocolate flavor is dark and bittersweet, with a touch of milky sweetness. Has a slight bitterness to it that seems cocoa-powder like. Has a good amount of roasted malt and some coffee too. Finishes with a touch of citrus, some roast and some hoppy bitterness.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a pretty smooth feel, somewhat prickly in terms of carbonation. The hoppiness in the finish gives it a bit of a bite and takes away just slightly from the creaminess of the beer.

I am very happy to say that this is much better than the 27. I know that 27 was generally well liked and I was in the minority for being underwhelmed, which I can't really explain, but I will say that this is just plain better. A very enjoyable and tasty chocolate stout.

Photo of thain709
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - A dark brown body with some light brown highlights...the head was very small and bubbly and it didn't last for very long...decent lacing though

S - Very sweet up front with vanilla leading the it warms up more of the roasted aromas and chocolate come out

T - Again, sweetness up front from the vanilla but it's not overly sweet...the middle opens up to the glorious cocoa tastes like melted dark has a sort of creaminess to it as it rolls around on the palate...a slight coffee finish mixes with a sweetened roasted characteristic

M - Full bodied...this one is creamy, milky, and chewy...hops were evident in the flavor but one of my burps tasted of some citrus hops!

D - This is a bigger brother of Scratch 27 and I'm very happy I got some of this...the addition of the cocoa nibs really came out in the flavor...the vanilla was sweet all around...get this while you can

Photo of joepais
3.77/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Wow I was pleasantly surprised to meet up with Deuane and his wife yesterday. He was nice enough to share this one with me. Poured the bottle into some red wine glasses and was greeted with a slight tan colored head that dissipated fast. The body of the brew was black in color. First putting the brew to my nose I got a ton of coco nibs with a hint of vanilla but when it sat for a while the vanilla stepped up and became dominate. Flavor wise I got some what the same it was a nice bitter chocolate to start off then it morphed into a vanilla bomb. The carbonation was a tad light for me and the mouthfeel was a little thin But.. I went from drinking a Kate to this brew so my palette could have been compromised.
I really liked the brew when it started off, Once it warmed there was to much vanilla for me. I say drink this one on the cold side.

Photo of Slatetank
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Original review a -4.5 s 4 m 3.5 t -4 d-3.5 I had this on tap at the tasting room in Harrisburg - served in a mini-snifter.

The color is deep coffee brown, slight tan cap creates a ring of beads, but becomes more of a head when swirled. The bead is tight and the clarity is opaque. The smell has a nice blend of coconut, cocoa and vanilla with mild nutty toasted tinges and slight vanilla floral accent with mild sweet odors from the malt.
The feel while creamy and smooth also seems thin for the style and is highly carbonated with a slightly astringency either from the cacao nibs the yeast or combo of both with mellow citrus tang of hops coming in to play later. I like the light spice and sweetness which balance each other though.

The flavor is mild with cacao nibs giving more to the feel with vanilla adding a gentle twang and slight coffee and chocolate flavor blending with the 'juju' as they say. The flavor comes off slightly sweet with mild caramel malt elements and subtle toasted grain although the hops do their job to create a complex stout. the stout is great flavor wise with an almost candy-bar type experience which is good in small doses. I don't know if I would get a whole growler unless I was sharing with a group. The sixer might be a better option because even though I liked it -I need to be in the mood for this type of stout. It is flavorful and well made, but could use time possibly for the flavors to marry.

*Re-review* A 4.5 S 4 M 4 T 4 D 4.5
second sampling -Bear's Den at the Hershey Lodge on tap -served chilled in a pint

A deep opaque black with thick band of cream, rocky cap with lots of wavy lace and tight bead. The smell is pure candy bar -plenty of cocoa, vanilla and roasted aromas presenting a fudge-like effect on the olfactory. The feel is rich and substantial with mild malt sweetness and high carbonation with semi bitter aspect and relatively high roastiness with a semi-dry finish.

The flavor is probably the best chocolate stout I ever had - the first sample did not really do it justice - plenty of smooth vanilla as it warms with the cocoa nibs and roasted malt giving a nice bitter compliment. The malt sweetness is just right and I enjoyed it to the last swallow. It is a shame I didn't pick any bottles up, but I really did love this on tap -I feel lucky I got to have it twice.

Photo of jsvt
3.84/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz Bottle poured into snifter.

Dark black brown with 1/2" light rings on edge. Not consistent body.

Chicolate, bitter bitter chocolate, Anise, Rootbeer, malted milk ball (Whoppers) oreo cookie on nose with sweet pumpernickel.

The chocolate was enticing, great dessert beer!

The Sheriff of Nibbingham.

A nibula of nib flavor!

A sippin stout.

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Scratch Beer 41 - 2011 (Cacaoabunga Redux) from Tröegs Brewing Company
90 out of 100 based on 42 ratings.