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Imperial Jo | Lancaster Brewing Company

very good
11 Reviews
no score
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Imperial JoImperial Jo

Brewed by:
Lancaster Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States | website

Style: Milk / Sweet Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
Imagine the rich roasted malts, smooth mouth feel and subtle sweetness of our award-winning Milk Stout, kicked up a notch or two, by the infusion of dark-roasted, small batch coffee from our friends at Lancaster County Roasters. At 8% ABV, cracked coffee beans in the mash, coffee in the boil and cold brewed espresso in the finished beer, just think of Imperial Jo as Milk Stout's rowdy big sister.

Added by bigfnjoe on 02-28-2014

User Reviews
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Reviews: 11 | Ratings: 68
Reviews by stakem:
Photo of stakem
3.57/5  rDev -11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks Slatetank for sharing this brew with me. Growler poured into a cervoise, the brew appears black in color with a rich mocha head. 2 fingers slowly fade leaving a webbing and patchy lace sticking to the glass. Some cola clarity is seen around the edges when held to the light.

The aroma is fruity with alcohol and mostly raison-like blending to some roasty milk chocolate. There is a touch of green yeastiness about the brew and it really doesnt pop with the coffee character you would expect based off the description.

The flavor has some green yeastiness about it as well that makes it seem like homebrew that was bottled too early. Some minor vegetative aspect blending to herbal hops. It is quite bitter caught between pine-like hoppiness and burnt char of grain. If I didnt know any better, if say this was a strange attempt at a black ipa, not a coffee stout.

This is medium bodied with a modest level of carbonation. This is an interesting offering. It seems like it is a poorly made black ipa or very vegetative stout but with a slick, quick finish yet some sips linger with roast and others like pine resin. The look is hands down the best characteristics of this brew. The flavor is quite muddled and messy. The aroma is nice but missing the advertised coffee attributes. Thank you Matt for sharing.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Afroman
4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of whatname
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of zonker17
3.92/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of bret717
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of DrBier
3.78/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of metter98
3.73/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A: The beer is very close to being jet black in color—only traces of red are visible near the bottom of the glass when it is held up to the light. It poured with a quarter finger high creamy tan head that died down but consistently left a short head covering the surface and lots of lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of lactose, black licorice and espresso are present in the nose.
T: The taste starts out with initial flavors of lactose but flavors of roasted espresso are prevalent in the back end. The espresso becomes stronger as the beer warms up.
M: It feels medium-bodied and smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer has a really nice mouthfeel and makes for a good breakfast beer if you want something that can wake you up on a weekend. Any traces of alcohol are very well hidden.

Serving type: bottle

 875 characters

Photo of jjd315
3.83/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of DocBrewroo
5/5  rDev +24.7%

Photo of ShanePB
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of wethorseblanket
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of weeare138
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of Draesith
4.5/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of dfconnor
4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just the right balance of maltiness, slight sweetness and coffee overtones make this brew a real winner. It is important to pour this one the right way to release the aromas a bit as you drink it. ABV not overpowering. One of my favorite coffee stouts.

 255 characters

Photo of kerry4porters
4.75/5  rDev +18.5%

Photo of Dougwillhike
4.25/5  rDev +6%

Photo of bigfnjoe
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of GarageRock
4.41/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of NJBeer265
4/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of sulldaddy
3.86/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampling a cellar temp growler poured into a snifter. Beer is a gift of my brother Brian.
The beer pours a dark cola brown hue with a fizzy tan head of 3 cm foaming up and actually spilling over the rim of my glass even with a gentle pour.
The aroma is a mix of coffee grinds and roasted malt with some light hits of sugary sweetness, but the sweet is buried and there is no hop presence.
First sip reveals a very fine and tingly carbonation paired with a silky smooth texture and slightly thicker body.
Flavor is very roasted with some dark chocolate and a bit of coffee grinds. I dont get any hops and the booze is well hidden too, although as I get closer to the end of the growler I do feel the effects.
This is a nice roasted malty beer and Im glad to have tried it.

 772 characters

Photo of Kurmaraja
3.96/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of KeefD
3.75/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of 57md
4.04/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Dark brown in color. The nose smells like rich ground coffee beans. The roast on the flavor profile is fairly potent. The roasted bitterness comes on in the finish as one drinks more and more of this offering. The body is a touch lighter than I’d like but that’s a minor complaint.

This is one great coffee infused beer.

 328 characters

Photo of drewone
3.5/5  rDev -12.7%

Photo of EvoRich
4.36/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

LBC Milk Stout has always been a favorite of mine. When my buddy told me about Imperial Jo coming out, I was excited. It's essentially their Milk Stout, brewed with coffee, as far as I know. I love coffee stouts. First had it on tap at their brewpub in Harrisburg. Very smooth, maybe a nitro tap?

Appearance: Poured straight down the center of a snifter. 1 and a half finger or head. Looks just as good as any other stout I've had. Very dark. Looks look great.

Smell: Definitely coffee, but not over bearing. Nothing amazing about the smell, but good regardless

Taste: Just as I'd expect a coffee milk stout to be. It's quite literally the Milk stout with coffee! Exactly what I was hoping for. Sweetness of the milk stout and the bitterness of the coffee are a great blend. One of the better coffee flavored beers I've had.

Mouthfeel: Again, if you've had their Milk Stout, it's about the same. Not very creamy or thick, but good nonetheless. I first had in on tap as I mentioned, and it was nitro, I believe. It was very smooth, however, I prefer it out of the 22oz bomber. I like carbonation. And to me, it's better from the bottle. To each their own.

Overall: It's my second favorite coffee style stout, thus far. Coffee stouts being my favorite of all beers, being second is quite an achievement. I'm sure this will be rotating availability, I hope it gains enough popularity to be brewed more often.

 1,412 characters

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Imperial Jo from Lancaster Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 11 ratings.