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Highland Black Mocha Stout - Highland Brewing

Not Rated.
Highland Black Mocha StoutHighland Black Mocha Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

439 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 439
Hads: 1,010
Avg: 3.89
pDev: 10.8%
Wants: 48
Gots: 145 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Highland Brewing
North Carolina, United States | website

Style | ABV
American Stout | 5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jason on 12-09-2002

Highland’s most robust beer, having a very malty body with a large, roasted chocolate flavor, all achieved solely through the use of special roasted barley grains. It is black in color with a very clean finish and moderate hop flavor.

While the porter style was developing, some brewers produced a stout porter and over time generated a new style known simply as stout. These beers traditionally contain a distinct roasted malt flavor and can run the gamut from a dry stout, such as Guinness to a sweet stout such as Watney’s Cream Stout. Our Black Mocha falls in the sweet stout range and derives its chocolate and coffee tones from the use of appropriate roasted malt grains and is very often used as an after dinner libation or an accompaniment to dessert.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 439 | Hads: 1,010
Photo of StJamesGate
4.02/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Jet black with pomegranate highlights and creamy beige head that instantly sheets, rings and laces.
Ash, oily espresso and burnt sugar on the nose.
Sultana, char, dark caramel, some roasty sweetness and moderate branch hop bitterness.
Cocoa bean finish and dry linger.
Smooth, medium, chewy.

Big and round, roast forward, but smooth and even. A very clean but solid stout that's neither an RIS nor Irish nor hoppy - unusual these days.

Happy first taste of Asheville.

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Photo of fountainofyouth
4.07/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a Guinness-style tulip 20 oz. glass.

Appearance: Pours a very big head that retains well, off-white in color. The body is an imposing near-black and impenetrable to light. Lacing intact.

Smell: The smell is becomingly complex, with some sweet malt and light coffee mixing with a hint of booze. There might be a tiny bit of citrus hops, but I'm not sure. Most of what dominates is sweet brown malt.

Taste: Overall very good, although I wish it had a teensie bit more punch to it. Roasted barley is there and some coffee grounds, although there is a little bit of malt sweetness too that keeps it from getting too ashy. Hop presence is minimal.

Mouthfeel: The coffee grounds (or something) add a grainy, dry feel to the beer -- and I don't dislike it. The carbonation is restrained and doesn't interfere with the flavor.

Overall: I could be temped to buy it again. Definitely a worthy contender for the style. People used to drinking slightly sweeter dark ales might find it too imposing.

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Photo of TheSSG
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dense, tan head with nice lacing. Deep, rich toasted malt in the nose; big notes of coffee. Black. Acidic and bright, with toasted malt throughout. Builds into a medium floral hop bitterness. Finish is toasted malt throughout.

Overall, I like this. No coffee in it, but it tastes VERY much like it does have it. I wish it was a touch less acidic, and a touch MORE toasted malt.

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Photo of facundoCNB
3.98/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

a dark brown/black pour with a finger of head which actually gave off some nie lacing. nice head retention as well. smells of coffee beans rise immediately, followed by chocolate and a very nice roasted nut smell. the flavor is a very mellow and smooth blend of coffee, chocolate, vanilla, roasted grains, and macadamia nuts. medium in body with pretty low amount of carbonation.. feels a bit on the lighter side (watery).

overall, this is a solid beer. not sure if it's a seasonal or a year-round, but it's pretty damn good nonetheless. very subtle, but dead on as far as stouts.

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Photo of rudzud
4.09/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Received an extra in a trade. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

A - Poured a nice dark brown hue with a good one finger dark mocha head that slumped down to a light quarter blanket.

S - Aromas of good roasted malts, chocolate, and nice roasty black coffee. Very, very pleasant.

T - Taste is nice. Similar to the nose. Good bitter coffee notes, roasted malts, creamy chocolate notes. This is quite tasty.

M - Mouthfeel is creamy, lowly carbonated, but a bit thin. Not bad though

O - Overall A solid beer. Wish it was a bit thicker. Still, not bad though.

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Photo of Treyliff
3.84/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A- pours a pitch black color with a small fizzy dark-tan head that reduces quickly and nearly dissapears, leaving no lace.

S- dark chocolaty roasted malt, chocolate syrup, also some dried dark fruit, raisins, cherries, pure vanilla extract at the end. This one smells like an inviting chocolate bomb.

T- the dark fruit notes continue to the palate, the chocolate tastes like a dark cocoa with a hint of vanilla. The finish is smoky with some charcoal, finishes dry with just a bit of hop.

M- light-medium body, low carbonation creamy mouthfeel with a velvety finish. The body seems just a bit thin for the style.

O- this aroma of this one was pure chocolate, but the taste seemed to fall a bit short of the expectations from the aroma. It was still very enjoyable, and would be a good choice for those looking for chocolate flavored stouts.

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Photo of tectactoe
3.87/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a deep color, basically black all around, only some slight dark brown around the very edges; tan head, thick on the pour leaving medium lacing. Deep mocha on the nose; creamy, sweet coffee, roasted barley, and bittersweet chocolate and cocoa beans. The flavor follows right along - the coffee profile was actually a bit stronger than expected (not a bad thing) and combats the mocha for the number one spot. The mocha has a bitter underlaying with sweetness and creaminess coming in to round it out. Hops show up in the taste that were not really present in the aroma; kind of dry, leafy, herbal, ashy. The bitter character balances well, hits a little on the back of the tongue. Some char flavors, not necessarily smokey, but charcoal and deep, burnt, roasted barley and malt. Reasonably creamy body, medium-thick but not syrupy, middle of the road on the carbonation scale.

Very good mocha stout, nice creamy body and lots of flavor for being only 5.6% ABV. You could certainly put a few of these down in a single sitting and be okay, as well as satisfied.

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Photo of Maltmaiden
3.93/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Black/dark brown. Carbonation bubbles are visible. Small but persistent head

S: Cocoa and very toasted malts. some hops. Molasses. Not as much coffee as I was expecting...more chocolaty. Vanilla. Metal?

T: Toasted malts and bitter cocoa powder upfront. Coffee beans. Earthy hops. Touch of vanilla. Root beer. And that weird metal again?

M: Maybe too much carbonation. Goes down easy though.

O: good but too much bitterness and carbonation than I like in my stouts. Won't go out of my way to get this again.

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Photo of brewdude1982
3.86/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was a pint I had in tap at Wakefield tavern in Raleigh.

This is a dark beer much like one would expect from a stout. Good lacing and a thick head with lots of tiny bubbles. It has relatively no smell but then again I am stuffed up. The taste is very much coffee and roasted dark malts. It is a pleasant change from some of the other stouts that I have had recently. This brewery is making beers that range from mediocre to great in my book.

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Photo of JDVance742
4.19/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle into a DFHead tulip glass.

Appearance is a beautiful, deep, ebony, like a low carbonated cola.

Head is super thick and medium length of staying around, pretty good lacing. Can see every sip going down, however not completely defined.

Smells like an extra chocolate mocha. Heavy roasting(coffee provoking, chocolate evoking), light hints of vanilla, wood fire burning in the other room scent on the background.

Taste parallels the scent, with the roasted malt jumping to the foreground and the chocolate slipping to the light end. Parallel to the lessening of chocolate flavor is the more pronounced vanilla and cream flavors.

Mouthfeel is a bit lacking in comparison to the overall experience, carbonation comes through a bit tingly, and lacks in full body to accompany the bounty of other experiences, but too much good going on to really go too low on this score either.

Overall I'd give it more of a 4.3. A pleasant beer, even after sitting to warm for twenty to thirty+ minutes.

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Photo of BeerDawgs
4.08/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - A pitch black as night color, no clarity, and 1 tall finger of head. Nice tan lacing left on the glass. Impressive!

S - Roasted malts and chocolate are very prevalent. A touch of hop bitterness

T - Tasty! As expected by the appearance and nose. Chocolate, coffee beans, slight sweetness, which I like in my stouts. Well balanced.

M - Smooth. Medium carbonation. Creamy.

O - Best Highland brew I have had, by far. Excellent stout! Love it. WIll seek it out again

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Photo of Axnjxn
3.51/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a Big Boss pint glass.

Pours a pitch black color with a 2 inch thick head. Smell is...not much. I detect a faint coffee aroma but not much else. The taste is not much better. A mild coffee flavor with a slight bitter finish. It's okay. Light body and medium carbonation. Wish this were heavier, feel leaves something to be desired.

Overall this is a drinkable beer but you can do better. I wouldnt turn it down but this is not Highland's best offering.

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Photo of dvmin98
3.6/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Living in Charlotte, I really enjoy a lot of the Highlands stuff. This was my first taste of BMS.

Appearance: Nice, deep dark color. One finger head that stuck around for 30 secs or so

Smell: Nice chocolatey tones. Good nose overall.

Taste: Nice sturdy stout. Stuck to the front of my tongue

Mouthfeel: Too carbonated for me in regards to a stout. My tongue was much more tingly than other stouts I'm used to

Overall its a good stout that I would drink again, but it would be better if it wasn't so carbonated

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Photo of jlindros
4.05/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Interesting concept, a Scottish style brewery in the middle of Asheville, NC. Thanks to JonnyGalt for this interesting beer.

A creamy looking mocha colored smaller head that sits there for a bit, and leaves a high water mark of lacing notched as I sip, over a dark almost black beer, with slight hints of molasses colored light sneaking through when held directly to the light.

Nose is pure black malts, like nightmarish black malt aroma, dark as hell. Some coffee in there, a bit of fresh roasted coffee beans and a bit of roast, a bit of mocha with that as a hint of cocoa starts to sneak in. A light caramel aroma, hint of fluffy nougat and maybe a bit vanilla.

Taste starts rich and creamy, almost milky or lots of oats, then roasted malt, a hint of acrid almost burnt roast, and burnt roast. Some coffee, little roasted coffee bean and hint of burnt coffee, and light charcoal like. Some baker's chocolate comes in lightly in the background and brings the mocha quality out more. A little caramel and fluffy nougat again. Some bitterness but mostly from the roast, maybe a hint of earthy hops. Finish is a bit sticky and syrupy quite rich and mouth coating, a bigger bitterness fairly earthy bitterness and lingering roasted malt, light coffee and chocolate lingering.

Mouth is thick and rich, quite creamy, decent carb.

Overall pretty good, lots of coffee, mocha, roast, and very rich and creamy thick for being just 5.6%, although it does bring a bit of acrid burnt flavors from the roast, but not too strong. Overall a nice tasty beer.

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Photo of FosterJM
3.36/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

1563rd Review on BA
Bottle to Great Lakes Snifter
12oz

I didnt find a bottle date
Thanks to BlackBelt5112203 for this one

App- It was a nice base stout. A bit of a black color with some browns all around. A good deep center. The head was a good tan 1 finger loose bubbling and nice clinging beer. Looked good in the glass.

Smell- The roasted malts are overpowering on this one and do little to smooth this out. The hop addition adds another layer but competes too much vs. layering the beer. I dont find the mocha or chocolate aromas at all.

Taste- I thought it was pretty good. A bit too ashy and thin on the mocha. A bit of the hops couldve been dropped down a bit to make this a more smooth drinker vs. being prickly and stinging. The flavors are a bit lined up and come at you 1 at a time vs. being integrated and layered. As this warmed it was a bit of a dark cherry flavor with a little bit of a bakers chocolate flavor as well.

Mouth- A light body stout. I know its an american stout, but this was a bit too thin and watery for me with a bit of a high carbonation. Residual flavors on this were some ash, roast, smoke and bitter. I get no mocha still even as warm.

Drink- It was okay. Wasnt a mind blowing hidden gem. Solid offering that I feel would be served to dial down the roast and up the smooth factor. I think this wouldve been better with a food pairing.

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Photo of Moss
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Pours an expected dark black with a light brown 2 finger head. Leaves good lacing.

S - Smells like coffee and mocha from the roasted malts. Smells sweet.

T - Tastes as it smells with the coffee and chocolate taste. Much like what I expected from this beer. Sweet but has a good finish from the hops with the bitterness to even it out.

M - Medium bodied and creamy with light carbonation.

Overall - Good beer, would have again.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
4.05/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a jet black color with off-white head. Smell is of roasted coffee.. delicious. Taste is medium to heavy bodied, very sweet with some great roasted notes. Smooth and clean with great texture and finish to it. Tasty stout and definitely above average for the style, a great addition to the mixed 12 pack.

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Photo of Josiah2729
4.07/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into pint glass.

Appearance: Dark black with a half finger of tan head. Not much head retention, but decent lacing.

Smell: Dark roast coffee all the way, slight dark chocolate scent.

Taste: Dark roast coffee, followed by dark chocolate flavors, hint of bitter hops toward the end with a little malt sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium thickness, very slight carbonation, creamy texture at the end.

Overall: Nice stout, will try again.

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Photo of axeman9182
3.95/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, poured into my Firestone Walker tulip.

Highland's Black Mocha Stout pours a solid black, with about a finger and a half of tan foam capping the beer. Head retention is pretty good, and there's some spotty lacing left around the glass. The nose has a nice, fairly potent coffee aroma. Dark chocolate provides a solid background note. The flavor profile follows that outline exactly. Lots of coffee up front, an impressive amount for a beer of this size, and then dark chocolate creeps in and adds a little depth so that the beer doesn't just taste like cold chocolate. The mouthfeel is just a little disappointing, in that it's a bit watery. I know the beer's not even six percent as far as ABV, but I'd still like the body to be a little bit more sturdy for a stout. The carbonation is nice and understated though. Minor mouthfeel issue aside, Highland's Black Mocha Stout is a really nice beer, I'll be checking out more offerings from the brewery next time I'm down in North Carolina

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

A: This poured an opaque black with a little tan head.
S: It smelled like sweet chocolate with roasted coffee and brown sugar and cream.
T: It tasted like dry roasted coffee and bitter dark chocolate, with some pumpernickel and cream. It had a clean and bittersweet aftertaste.
M: It was somewhat thick with some carbonation. Decent body.
D: This had a nice scent and taste with solid body. The finish was pretty smooth, so it was easy to drink. Nothing special, but an enjoyable brew.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.23/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a nonic.
No date or info. (5.6% ABV)

Thanks to Onenote81 for another North Carolina Beer!

A - Deep, dark brown in color, this beer looks just about as close to black as it gets. A tall pour creates a dense cocoa head with great retention and thick gobs of lace clinging to the glass.

S - Highland's Black Mocha Stout is abruptly roasted upon first whiff, suggesting cold black coffee, bittersweet chocolate, and of course, mocha. Maduro cigar wrapper and faintly musty walk-in humidor give it a nice touch while this assertively earthy aroma swirls around.

T - Massively roasted, this rich beer is a dark beer lover's dream; cold coffee and chunky bittersweet chocolate with a hefty helping of dry mocha flourish among the earthy, dry hops.

M - Thick and rich, Highland's Black Mocha Stout is one of the most full-bodied beers I've had in recent memory. Smooth on the palate, a dry, earthy finish keeps the acrid bitterness of the roasted malt from becoming too much.

O - Share not with light beer friends, Highland's Black Mocha Stout is as robust as they come, especially at a lower alcohol level. Acrid bitter roast takes hold of the tongue while the smooth body helps even out. This would be a terrific cool fall day beer.

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Photo of soulfly1492
3.46/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Aroma: Mild chocolate. Mild roasty notes. Some green olive and anise, not sure how that will turn into a good thing.

Appearance: Black, but not opaque, can see some dark ruby color at the edges. Medium brown head is tall. Little retention and good lacing.

Taste: Bold enough. Cocoa. More roasty than the smell indicated. Light anise. Hops are floral and lightly bitter. The bitter anise comes out mostly at the end.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body. Mild to moderate carbonation. Slick and oily, finishes just barely dry.

Overall: Nice balance, not overly sweet. Savory overall, but the aftertaste could be more pleasant.

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Photo of BeerDocT
3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a room temp. "Piraat" tulip.

-Appearance 4.0: Jet black with a quarter inch khaki head. Head disappeared faster than you could say "Jack Robinson," but left pleasant frothy swirls on top.

-Smell 3.5: Very nice notes of toasted grains and a deep, dark malt. The bouquet is, however, subdued.

-Taste 4.0: Up front: cool liquid with a hint of grassiness. This was followed by a smooth, smoky and subtly sweet, slightly chocolate middle. Finish was dry with very light hop notes. Aftertaste was long and primarily a very pleasant dark chocolate.

-Mouthfeel 4.0: Excellent level of carbonation that enhances the taste of the beer. All other elements of mouthfeel were very smooth and enjoyable.

-Overall 4.0: Satisfying, but at the same time not pedestrian in any way, shape or form. This stout has a body that is almost too light, but its other elements work together in such a way as to make you just enjoy the taste. One of the few session stouts I can think of. Worth picking up if you see it.

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Photo of Arborescence
3.58/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pitch black, pours a head of medium thickness and moderate duration; creamy.

Aroma: Fairly mild: chocolate, malt, and milk -- no distinct hops or roasted aromas.

Taste: Malty, with the bitterness of chocolate kicking in, not too strong though. Lingering aftertaste with a touch of hops.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and round, medium bodied.

Overall: Good stout, of medium robustness with a dominance of malt and just a little bit of chocolate. Not the best in its category, but above average.

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Photo of BlackBelt5112203
3.64/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter at cellar temperature.

L - Black color with ruby-tinged edges and a 3-finger frothy tan-brown head. Great retention, pretty nice lacing. Looks good.

S - Roasted barley and lots of bready, toasty malt. Hints of chocolate and no sign of coffee. Really not as much chocolate or coffee as I’d like to see from something called “Mocha Stout.”

T - Molasses, sugar, and chocolate sweetness followed by solid roasted coffee bitterness. Not a lot of complexity here, but it shows the “Mocha” aspect a lot more than the nose suggested.

F - Light-to-medium bodied, more tingling carbonation than I expected, sticky mouthfeel, and a moderately dry and bitter finish. Bitterness and coffee taste lingers for a decent amount of time.

O - This is an average stout. It looked promising after the pour, but the rest of the beer was only average. The nose did not yield much at all, and the mouthfeel is a little bit too watery for a stout in my opinion. The taste had a little bit more chocolate and coffee than the aroma suggested, but still not enough to make this one anything special. I’m glad I tried this, but I won’t be getting it again.

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Highland Black Mocha Stout from Highland Brewing
87 out of 100 based on 439 ratings.