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Amsterdam Tempest Imperial Stout - Amsterdam Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Amsterdam Tempest Imperial StoutAmsterdam Tempest Imperial Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

53 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 53
Hads: 125
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: 7.77%
Wants: 8
Gots: 26 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Amsterdam Brewing Company visit their website
Ontario, Canada

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Sammy on 05-29-2011

Brewed with a complex grain bill and three types of hops that make for a bracing bitterness which quickly blends with deep malt notes and slight spiciness.

100+ IBU
View: Beers (61) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 53 | Hads: 125
Photo of cosmicevan
4.19/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to fueo1 for the bada$$ extra! Enjoyed from my oversized batch 2 TB snifter.
2013

a- scored the wax and pried the top off (easy peasy, like any other waxed bottle)...liquid poured a deep lush sludgy black. Settled in the glass like an 8 ball with a mocha colored foamy cap that coated the glass with lace as I sipped and it dissolved. My mouth is officially watering.

s - nose sings a song of deeply roasted chocolate flavored coffee. Rich and lush and inviting. The roast carries an almost woody scent with it. Burnt.

t/m/o - HUGE roast. Roasted roasty roasters of roasted roastiness. Coffee and charred burnt chocolate. Silky smooth while being full bodied and chewy. Did I mention that this beer is roasty? It is also fairly burnt malt but really nice. Definitely something different and tasty. Very glad to have tried. (838 characters)

Photo of BeerWatcher
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First observation is it was extremely hard to get open. Took me about 12 minutes to open it. This is due to them waxing over the cap and it being very reluctant to come off in anything but extremely small flakes. Was it worth the effort? It sure was. Got toasted malts, subtle dark chocolate undertones, and even a tad of coffee. Very flavourful, and right up there amongst some of the best stouts I have had. (409 characters)

Photo of challenja
4.49/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

16oz wax covered bottle potted into a Samuel Adams pint glass

A: dark Sacloth with a one finger wide frothy milk Chocolate head.

S: boozy bourbon Malts. Fermented red berries. Bakers yeast. Candied prunes.

T: boozy bourbon chocolate malts. Light astringent raw cocoa beans. Medium tannic coffee Americano notes. Luscious red berries and candy prunes.

M: beautiful rich and full mouthful. Creamy and delicious. A very smooth mouthfeel. This is just as mouth pleasing as surly the darkness on tap or evil twins imperial biscotti break.

O: that's is the first beer worth reviewing in Canada after many many a beer and it's a fantastic stout worthy of praise and admiration. (675 characters)

Photo of Dna_Infinity
3.61/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle to glass

2013 vintage

Appearance - Pours a really dark colour, mocha head that leaves good lacing

Smell - Lots of roasted malts, you smell the alcohol and it even smells a little like rubbing alcohol. Slight raisin smell

Taste - Coffee, dark chocolate, raisins, the weird alcohol taste lingers at the very end however. Smooth finish

Overall - A good offering from Amsterdam but the weird rubbing alcohol is a little disappointing because it does linger. Dangerously easy to drink though, you don't realize how much you've drunk until you stand up! I have two more that I am going to lay down (603 characters)

Photo of Ivanhoes_Backpack
3.88/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Review/Rate #900. Wax cap 500ml into a snifter. ANBL's first-ever Imperial Stout stock. Only took until 2014! Heard lots of complaints about the difficulty of getting the cap off, but it really just takes a little precision and some muscle and it should come off fine.

A - pours rich dark brown with a tan head, about half a finger.

S - I was actually most surprised by the aroma - lots of hops upfront. If I didn't know better I would think this was a CDA or a black IPA. Roastiness and chocolate sneak in after.

T - bitter coffee upfront, lots of choclate, espresso roasty goodness on the finish. Not much sweetness despite the abv.

M - thick and rich, low carbonation.

O - not a bad brew. Certainly the best RIS going here in NB (read: the only one). In a category with other behemoths though, this would certainly be lost at sea. But on its own, it's pretty good. I'm sitting on another. (896 characters)

Photo of polloenfuego
3.54/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

From the 500 ml bottle to a snifter.

Tempest pours a deep dark brown, almost black, with a very thin head of just about a thumb thickness. This head breaks somewhat quickly and one is left with little lacing and just a tiny island of bubbles in the middle of glass.

The smell is chocolate, coffee, a touch of leather, and unfortunately rubbing alcohol. This is somewhat off putting.

Taste is bitter coffee, burnt malts, and bitter chocolate...again the alcohol also sneaks through in an unfortunate way...it is almost invasive on the finish.

Mouth feel is good carbonation, thickish, warming from the aforementioned alcohol gives a good finish.

Overall, I would have to say this is an okay beer. I have to wonder if age would help it, but that cat is out of the bag at this point. Perhaps I will pick up another and put it away. The alcohol smell and taste is the weak point for this beer, otherwise it makes the mark pretty well. (936 characters)

Photo of spinrsx
3.79/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500ml Bottle from the Ottawa LCBO for $6

Appearance - Dark brown colour with a large size frothy light brown head. I can't make out the amount of carbonation showing and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for around 5 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, chocolate, coffee

Taste & Mouth - There is a below average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, chocolate, and vanilla. There is also some coffee, a bit of booze, and a roasted/burnt bitterness.

Overall - Better than I though it would be based on the ratings. Curious to see how this ages since it seems a little rough around the edges. (617 characters)

Photo of DenisKolkin
3.81/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle from LCBO received as Christmas gift. Have been curious about this one for awhile, but never bothered to pick it up. Served chilled into a pint glass.

Appearance - Dense dark brown nearly black beer spills into the glass. Ended up with about 2.5 fingers of dark brown head that appeared to lighten as it receded. Nice spidery lacing on the glass and the head retention is great, lasted for along time, leaving a foamy cap on top.

Aroma - Earthy, slightly floral, hoppy aroma. Some smoke and faint licorice scents as well. While there is also the coffee and chocolate aromas that accompanies many stouts it is not terribly pronounced.

Taste - A little bit of a hop and coffee mixture transitioning into a smoky bitter chocolate finish that further evolves into a dry hop bitter aftertaste. The initial flavors up front are rather subdued making the flavorful last half of any sip that much more dramatic.

Mouthfeel - Very smooth and frothy, not slick but nice medium body as well. The finish is neither dry nor wet, striking a nice balance of moderation. While knowing this is an American Imperial Stout, it is actually rather light and doesn't overwhelm with its density.

Overall- Pretty tasty brew, especially on a cold December night, and would recommend to have again. I'm interested in trying again to see what it tastes like at colder temperatures and whether there is a significant difference, compared to the moderately chilled bottle I had. (1,469 characters)

Photo of byronic
3.15/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Breaking into this bottle acquired from the LCBO was quite the chore. Far too much wax is used in sealing the bottle and no means to rip it off is provided.

A - Complete darkness with a dark thick head which dissipates very slowly.

S - Very dark chocolate with espresso, roasted barley

T - Bitter chocolate and coffee, alcohol, smoke

M - Medium carbonation and very warming, some alcohol burn

O - Not impressed with this brew. The alcohol is not very well disguised and is very present in the after taste. Pretty poor offering for an imperial stout. (554 characters)

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

A - Pours black as night, thick and opaque with a lingering deep brown head of foam.

S - Deep and dark with espresso and roasted barley aromas

T - Coffee, burnt malt, tobacco and bitter chocolate, alcohol and some hoppiness but it's overshadowed here by the intense roasty malts.

M - Thick and warming, flows over the tongue with some viscosity to it

O - A super roasty take on an Imp Stout. (395 characters)

Photo of CAMRAhardliner
3.84/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours completely black, no amber glints even to speak of. The espresso colored compact head leaves several meandering trails of lace on the glass. In the nose, chocolate and black coffee mix with some citrus and alcohol. The taste is enormously malty and roasty with molasses, tobacco, coffee and cocoa flavors. A creeping alcohol heat is always evident. Citrus and pine hops are in the background, providing a good balance to the maltiness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a subtle, moderate carbonation. A moderate hop bitterness blends with chocolate, roasty and booze flavors in the long finish.

This is a good Imperial Stout. It could be a little fuller bodied and modest in alcohol flavor, but still definitely worth a try. (734 characters)

Photo of SebD
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: It has a nice jet black color to it. It has a nice thick mocha head that dies down moderately and leaves very little lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitely give out hints of chocolate, coffee, rich roasted malts, dark fruit (raisins maybe) and some smokiness.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has some definite chocolate, bitter coffee, roasted malts, raisins, some smoke and sweet caramel.

Mouthfeel: It has a low-medium carbonation with a nice overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied with good flavors and aromas. Definitely the best beer I've had from Amsterdam. (622 characters)

Photo of mscudder
4.26/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Cheers to Marcus for sending this brew out me as an extra. Bottled 2012.

A - A deep mocha hue with a well formed inch head. Good retention with some lacing.

S - Smoked wood, sweet chocolate, dark fruits, light coffee, warmth from the booze and caramel. Nice!

T - Dark chocolate is at the forefront with this one. Nice sweetness with added bitterness. Bit of coffee surfacing on the back end. Light vanilla flavor throughout.

M - Chewy medium plus body with moderate carbonation.

O - Really impressed with this one and it saddens me it will be some time until I am graced with one again. If you have the chance, pick this one up. (633 characters)

Photo of tbeckett
4.14/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 2.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

My brother bought me this bottle from the LCBO a few months ago. Way too much wax on the bottle that I had to scrape off just to be able to fit the bottle opener on it. 2012 vintage.

A - One finger creamy brown head gone fast. Black colour. Mild carbonation coming up. No lace, no retention.

S - Nice sweet chocolate and roast. Dark fruit and coffee. Big dark fruit notes with that roast. Similar to much stronger and more complex impy stouts I've had with much higher ABVs.

T - Roast, chocolate, light booze, vanilla. Milky coffee, roasted notes coming out more when it opens up.

M - Nice carbonation, full body, sweet dark fruit finish that gets a little bitter in the end. Pretty smooth stuff.

O/D - A fairly nice Imperial Stout and one I've wanted to try for a while. The few months of smoothing out have probably done this well. A complex and enjoyable one from Amsterdam, and one that Ontario should be proud of. (926 characters)

Photo of papat444
3.81/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

***2012 Vintage***

Thanks to jrenihan for this one.

Poured from a 500ml. bottle.

Appearance: A very dense, black body but the head barely manages more than a finger before disappearing. Not much lacing left.

Smell: Miles better than the looks. Alcohol soaked raisins, brownies, fudge, coffee. Quite powerful.

Taste: Mix of milky & robust coffee, chunks of chocolate, good constant roastedness.

Moputhfeel: Slightly gassy at first but smooths out after a while yet still retains some bitterness.

Overall: All over the map on this one but overall, it's good but not great. Worth a shot. (592 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.84/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a rather large dark brown foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of dry roasted malt with some black chocolate and roasted coffee notes. Taste is mix between some roasted coffee notes with light bitter notes of black chocolate with some subtle notes of liquorice and light lactose finish. Body is quite full with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Very drinkable and well balanced though doesn’t necessarily stand out from the pack with limited complexity. (526 characters)

Photo of Top_Jimmy
3.99/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Overall a nice looking packaging, complete with black wax coated neck and cap. This beer was cellared for 3 months as per the manufacturers label.

Pours a dark almost black, with a nice tanned head. Nice looking product with nice tan lacing.

Creamy full mouthfeel that unfortunatley does not last very long with a bitter finish.

Taste of molasses, slight alcohol, bitter

Smells like slight smoke and malt with chocolate coming through as the beer warms. (458 characters)

Photo of mmapes
3.93/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle traded from Andrew (thanks!) Opened Jan 2013 (bottle is 2012). Pours very black, but not as opaque as some. Nice. Thin head dissipates quickly.

Smell: smoke, sweet dried fruit, grainy

First sip: Molasses, smoke. It's bitter. Sweet up front, but long bitter finish. Heavy-ish mouthfeel (full body).

Second sips: less bitter, more sweet.

Paired well with grape leaves stuffed with rice. (404 characters)

Photo of decimator
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle poured into a pint glass. ABV 9%.

A - Poured nearly black with a milk chocolate foamy head. Head reduced to a thin cap. Good lacing.

S - Chocolate, coffee, toasted grains, hint of brandy.

T - Toasted bread, some coffee, hint of dark chocolate, bitter hops and a hint of alcohol in the finish.

M - Medium carbonation, medium-heavy body, creamy, slick, smooth, minimal alcohol burn.

O - Pretty good stout. (421 characters)

Photo of CanuckRover
3.71/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours pretty darned close to black and almost completely opaque, just swallows light. Mocha head is about a finger off the pour, settles to a thin film within a couple minutes.

Disappointingly shy aroma. Very, very, very light coffee aroma, but mostly just booze where there's anything.

Carbonation picks things up right off the bat. Bit hard to pick apart at first taste, possibly a bit too carbonated. Finds its own mid-palate with a good roasty malt hit settling down to boozey chocolates. Some pretty standout cherry flavours throughout as well.

A nice imperial. Satisfying, if not as complex as the bad boys out there. That said, as someone with no love for imperial stouts, it's a fine beer. (702 characters)

Photo of mick303
3.93/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dark black, creamy coffee coloured head with really good lacing.

Aroma is of rich bitter coffee, roast malt, quite earthy, maybe a touch of stonefruit notes. Light on the chocolate but otherwise typical imperial stout notes.

Taste has a big upfront bitterness, and tons of roast dark malt. Big body, but quite a decent sipper. A bit unbalanced maybe. Plenty of dark roast coffee, dark chocolate notes though. Carbonation is light and body quite a bit malty presence. Alcohol is very well hidden and comes across a lot lighter than the ABV would suggest. Finish is very clean and structured, a nice dryness.

Not a mind-blowing imperial stout, but it has a really nice flavour and it works quite well. For xmas time, this is a nice local treat and quite enjoyable, nice and rich, with a surprising lightness. Certainly a good offering from Amsterdam. Won't rock your world but makes a really good no-frills holiday stout.

2013 vintage - tasted july 2014. Aroma is bitter and mildly roast. Lots of rich earthy dark chocolate. Taste is clean, with a balanced chocolate coffee character, developing more bitterness, lots of hop bitterness coming through, more apparent carbonation, with a rich earthy character, picked up more of the coconut and buttery vanilla notes, a bit of a balanced stout character, a bit more lively on the nose than on the flavour, some semisweet milk chocolate and strong coffee, still not an mind-blowing IS, but a full bodied and flavourful one with a pretty good complexity, updated ratings. (1,529 characters)

Photo of thehyperduck
3.68/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500 mL wax-dipped bottle from the LCBO; this is the 2012 edition. Poured into a tumbler, and served only slightly chilled.

Pours an opaque brownish-black colour, generating one finger of frothy, light tan-coloured head that quickly recedes into a soapy, bubbly film at the surface, with a modest collar. Minimal lacing. The aroma is muted and not particularly unique for the style - roasted malts, coffee, cocoa nibs, and a pronounced earthy, herbal dryness make up the bulk. Some dark cherry (or other dark fruit notes) become easier to make out as it warms, but on the whole the aroma is closer to average than outstanding.

Not all that impressed so far, but perhaps I've been too hasty - flavour is why most of us drink beer, and this stuff actually tastes pretty good. Roasted malts, semisweet chocolate and burnt coffee grinds all come to mind early during the sip, with molasses and raisin notes coming through as well. It finishes with a pleasant, charry, roasted malt character, with a hint of espresso and some accompanying herbal hop dryness. Dry, somewhat roasty aftertaste that lingers on the palate. For a 9% brew, the ethanol is actually surprisingly well-hidden, never really interacting much with the flavour profile. Medium-bodied, with relatively high levels of carbonation that give it a spritzier mouthfeel than most imperial stouts. This is not an especially complex beer for the style, but it is ridiculously drinkable for its heft.

Final Grade: 3.68, a B grade. Amsterdam's Tempest Imperial Stout is a solid brew, though I'd be lying if I said it was a favourite as far as big dark beers go. This is one of those beers that genuinely tastes and feels lighter than it actually is - which can be either a blessing, if you're not big on high-abv brews in general, or a curse, if heat and complexity from the ethanol is one of the reasons you seek out the style. Lightness aside, the flavours are deftly balanced, with the profile leaning toward the dry side overall, making this a highly quaffable double stout that won't exhaust your palate with sticky sweetness or booze. In a market that seems to lack wide access to locally-made beers of this style, this is an affordable offering that is definitely worth at least one try, though you shouldn't expect to be blown away. (2,297 characters)

Photo of biegaman
3.78/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

For a beer named "Tempest" this doesn't generate much of a storm insofar as head is concerned. What does last, however, is, like the beer itself, so wickedly dark as to be frightful - I may have to sleep with lights on tonight. This inky dark concentration shows any brown colour only along the trim and if held at off angles directly into the light.

The aroma smells Kahlua-like, albeit with a little more muscle behind it. Swirling helps to bring out the roastier, meatier malty notes; otherwise it succumbs to a faded, oily coffee monotony. The bouquets falls under a more traditional style, offering up a lightly roasted, only loosely chocolatey flavour and esters evoking plum.

Roasted grain factors heavily into the taste, perhaps too much as the anticipated, more decadent dark chocolate flavours fail to arise. Still, it supplies a welcome tarry, black coffee note and a creamy hazelnut middle. It's far from "rich" but also features a tea leaf earthiness and traces of black currants and blackberries that provide a little extra enjoyment on the finish.

So far as 9% stouts go, this is considerably lean-muscled. Not terribly dense, it's got no baby fat to drop and doesn't have the meatiness to withstand extended time in the cellar. Drink it sooner rather than later - and why not? It's in great shape. Despite warming to a more liqueur-like texture it keeps a fairly taut, solid composure and rarely exposes any alcohol.

Amsterdam Tempest is no match for the majestic Yeti or Abyss; were it literally an American double stout it'd rank second tier. However, it may well be one of the better Canadian offerings and does well to evince the style's pedigree (without stylishly showing it off). This was one of the more hyped and sought-after beers around these parts lately, and not without reason. (1,814 characters)

Photo of mintjellie
3.56/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Almost black, it's actually a very dark shade of brown. Small head quickly recedes without lacing. The slightly underpowered aroma features burnt sugar, black coffee, and delicate anise notes, as well as a blast of alcohol. Presents the palate with dark roast coffee, dark brown sugar, and raisin, followed by a strong char note and a long bitter finish. Medium bodied with low carbonation. Feels smooth but a little bit light for the style. I'm surprised how subdued the booze is, given how prominent it is in the aroma. Decent and drinkable. (543 characters)

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

Bottle, very cool, waxed over crown. Mouth feel light, grain bill great, low hoped, high abv masked by malts... other then the little hint of a sour note at the end, pretty damn good. Would by again, alternatively, they have a small beer made from this 35%ish of the abv, I will be checking it out! (298 characters)

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Amsterdam Tempest Imperial Stout from Amsterdam Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 53 ratings.