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Heavy Seas - Peg Leg Imperial Stout | Heavy Seas Beer

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Heavy Seas - Peg Leg Imperial StoutHeavy Seas - Peg Leg Imperial Stout

Brewed by:
Heavy Seas Beer
Maryland, United States | website

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Deep mahogany in color with aromas of roasted coffee, molasses and dark chocolate. Subtly hopped, making it astonishingly smooth and easy drinking for such a big beer.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-03-2004

User Reviews
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Reviews: 687 | Ratings: 1,362
Photo of superspak
3.68/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into snifter, best before 2/10/2015. Pours pitch black color with a 1 finger dense tan head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass. Aromas of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toast, toffee, dark bread, molasses, light licorice, light char, light herbal, and roasted earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of dark/roasted/bready malt and light earthy hop notes; with decent strength. Taste of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toast, toffee, dark bread, molasses, light licorice, light char, light herbal, and roasted earthiness. Light amount of herbal/roasted bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toast, toffee, dark bread, molasses, light char, and roasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Nice robustness and complexity of dark/roasted/bready malt and light earthy hop flavors; with a good roasted bitterness/sweetness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Light-medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a smooth, moderately creamy, and lightly sticky/chalky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is a nice imperial stout style. All around good robustness, complexity, and balance of dark/roasted/bready malt and light earthy hop flavors; and very smooth to sip on. A nicely enjoyable offering.

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Photo of Jeffreysan
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2013 edition 12 oz bottle, poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a beautiful, completely opaque, pitch-black color with almost no head what-so-ever, except an extremely thin halo of caramel-colored foam that gripped the sides of the glass.

Aroma: I’m stuffed up at the moment (I know that being in that condition is not ideal for reviewing a beer) so I’m not getting much out of the aroma, but other reviewers have noted aromas of roasted malt, dark chocolate, licorice, toffee, molasses, burnt sugar, and hints of tobacco and coffee.

Taste: Even though I’m stuffed up, my taste buds aren’t messed up and this beer tastes really, really good! It’s very malty up front, imparting notes of freshly toasted bread, flowed by some molasses, a touch of cinnamon, a touch of dried stone fruit, such as raisins, and some chocolate. There is no hops what-so-ever, which makes sense as the beer’s label mentions that it is an English-style imperial stout, rather than an American-style. Delicious!

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied to slightly chewy, and very, very smooth, as there is no carbonation what-so-ever. With an ABV of 8.0%, I’m surprised at how little alcohol is present on the palate.

Overall: This is a very solid, very well-made, English-style imperial stout. Very nice, solid flavors of malt and molasses. Very, very drinkable. I’d certainly get it again!

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Photo of EvoRich
4.54/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Look: Poured into a snifter, it's pitch black with about a finger head which is retained for a decent amount of time.

Smell: Very nice! Dark chocolates with coffee. A very roasty sweet smelling stout!

Taste: Bitter dark chocolate is very up front with a touch of coffee. Very malty.

Feel: Could have more body for such a robust taste and aroma. But not bad.

Overall: Much better than I expected! Mixed sweet and bitter very nicely.

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Photo of qcbrewer
3.65/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Honestly, I really like this beer, but I think it's more like a "standard" stout, than an imperial. I get that the percentage makes it lean towards imperial, but the complexity just isn't there.

Once again, I really like this beer, but perhaps just not the classification.

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Photo of JLSIV
3.92/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle marked Best by FEB 1015, into a 12 oz Sam Adam's glass. Deep dark Brown, almost black, no light getting thru, one finger tan head small bubbles little to spotty lacing.

Aroma had hints of chocolate/cocoa, some malt, there is a spice there that I can't place.

Taste is very good, Sweet malt, with a bitter finish, reminds me of dark chocolate…the sweetness is not cloying.

Mouthfeel is full bodied, heavy with a definite alcohol warmth…carbonation reminds me of Guinness Extra Stout.

Overall, I liked this, but I can't see a drastic difference between this style and any other stout, (Guinness Foreign Extra Stout seemed very similar to me)… I would definitely try this again and others from this type, as I like stouts in general. First beer from Heavy Seas, seems like high quality, and I like the freshness label being easy to read.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.64/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours an opaque thick jet black in color with light amounts of gentle visible carbonation along the edges of the glass and faint dark cola brown highlights. The beer has a two finger tall dense foamy mocha colored head that slowly reduces to a thick film covering the entire surface of the beer with a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of dark chocolate, dark fruits (alcohol soaked figs & prunes), roasted malts, and coffee. Hints of anise/licorice are present as well.

T: Upfront there is a light flavor of dark roasted malts which is quickly overtaken by the moderate flavors of dark chocolate and coffee. That is followed by a light to moderate flavor of dark fruits (alcohol soaked fig + prunes) with a light amount of sweetness. Hints of anise and minimal amounts of bitterness are present towards the finish. Light notes of alcohol/booziness in the finish.

M: Medium to full bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Hints of alcohol warming in the finish.

O: Relatively easy to drink and enjoyable with notes of both RIS and BSDA flavors/aromas. Alcohol is pretty well hidden though this one is more of a sipping beer.

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Photo of fscottkey
3.34/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A: Aggressive pour yields a 2 1/2 finger head of uniform bubbles. The head is tan and does not retreat quickly. The beer is dark black with ruby red edges in the light.

S: I smell coffee and vanilla. Maybe some boozy smells also.

T: The front is coffee. The midpalate has some boozy flavors to it. Then I get a mix of the 2 in the finish.

M: Slightly higher than expected carbonation. Still relatively smooth and creamy.

O: I think the alcohol could be hidden a little better at 8.2%. That is drowning out a little of the other flavors. I expected a little more vanilla or roasted malt flavors to accompany the light coffee taste. Overall this is a middle of the road beer. Would not seek it out - but would not turn it down either.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.24/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

With all the fixations on alcohol, sweetness and roast to carry the taste of trendy imperial stout, its refreshing to see a beer that's rooted in British rounded complexity even if its taste is savory, sipping and robust.

Clipper City's big boy of a stout starts with dark mahogany brown that's just off of opaque. As it stews in the glass like dark roast coffee, its roasted aromas follow suit with its own dark chocolate, walnut and cold-pressed blends. Its decadent seared sugars underneath take on a toffee and molasses tone but evading the viscous texture of either.

Across the middle, the strong ale really opens up by saturating the palate with equal parts bittersweet chocolate, nutty coffee blends and a toasty-peppery bit. The starchy sweetness that floats beneath carries with it the fruity sweetness of grilled currant, blackberry and a tinge of licorice.

Finishing with an oddly light sense of palatability, the luscious beer isn't exactly built for quick drinking but it's surly not indicative of imperial strength. Its understated simmering warmth cuts through the beer's sweetness and mild viscosity with a finish of smoky chocolate and grilled fruit.

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Photo of Lucular
4.25/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Criminally underrated, this Russian Imperial Stout is a steal at a price point of $9-10 per six-pack. It may not be the most mind-blowing RIS out there but for what it tries to be it is solid.

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Photo of bcsbeer
2.89/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Best by date JUN 30-14
Aggressively poured in to a DHF signature glass.

A: Deep mahogany with a 1 finger tan head. No lacing to speak of. The head acted more like a soda than a Russian Imperial Stout, loudly fizzing away as quickly as it appeared.

S: Slightly metallic, roasted coffee with a hint of ash tray. Reminded me of Dunkin Donuts coffee.

T: Similar to the nose with the addition of dark fruit and stale Coke. Very flat
MF: Thin with a dry aftertaste, not encouraging me to take another sip.

O: This beer did not fit the category. It is lacking the weight and complexity or a RIS.
Heavy Seas makes some good beer, but I think they missed the mark with this one or Oskar Blues and Founders set the bar to high. Either way I hope Siren Noire treats me better. I have bottle waiting for me in the fridge.

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Photo of oldirtycaffrey
3.78/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a near black color with a slight, slight hue of red. Very little head to speak of; leaves a slight trace of lacing along the glass as you finish. The smell is strongest with hints of chocolate, coffee, raisins; the taste is very sweet, slightly grainy, typical carbonation for a stout with this high a ABV. Very sweet finish. Overall, a good imperial stout for the price.

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Photo of Jay_Ulreich
3.92/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Heavy Seas never lets me down... unless I get an old batch of Hop3. This beer was exactly what I wanted at the time, a Malt bomb. I taste zero hops, and while that is normally a scary thing for me, it was actually quite nice. To call this an Impy Stout, is wrong IMO. Its more of a doppelbock. Reminded me of the malt character in Celebrator. Very caramely, very smooth, nice and chewy/thick. Hidden alcohol character could make you have a few too many before you realize it! Very little head, but thats how its sposed to be with impy stouts, which like I said, I dont think thats what they should call this. Its almost a brown in color, I expect a stout to be opaque and black. I could *almost* see through this one. All in all delicious caramel candy beer. If you want a malt bomb, get this one.

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Photo of HardTarget
3.77/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3.5

Black glass shows only the thinnest of ruby edges when back lit. Starts out with a frothy head, but dies down to trace cover. Thin halo of foam slows long legs as it slowly drips off the side of the glass.

Black strap molasses, burnt sugar with a heady plum liquor . Hints of tobacco, coffee, toffee, all things that are great, but not great for you. A bit of sin here.

Mild grape jam, sugary with little char or hop to bring it back to center. More fruity in the taste, some cherry flavor comes out.

Mouthfeel: A bit flat, medium body, almost watery texture.

Overall: Nice flavor, a bit heady and fruity, and not supported by enough Impy Stout flavor, the roasted barley character is very background leaving this more of a Barleywine.
Recommended. Thanks to Illudium for the sample!

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Photo of RickS95
3.89/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

The pour is a bit misleading, but still nice. It's extremely dark and produces a really nice, if minor, cascading brown head. Not a terribly thick beer, but the head is, at least for a brief time, gorgeous. However, it's short-lived because the retention isn't much. Spotty lace.

Coming up from the snifter, the smells are all subtle. Obviously, the malt bill shines. The smell is almost sweet, with caramel and toffee. Some chocolate in there as well, in addition to a splash of smoke. Something in there gives off a bubble gum scent. Can't put my finger on it.

The taste is kind of strange. Sweet chocolate starts off before giving way to an English stout-like earthy, roasted grain taste, almost like coffee. From mid sip on, a boozy taste is present.

This has layers. To begin, a milk stout feel presents. The sweet doesn't last long before the dry, bitterness overwhelms it. With the bitterness, the strongish alcohol feel is prominent. However, after the beer warms a bit, all the tastes and the feel meshes fairly well.

Overall, it's a good beer and I'm glad I've got several more. Had I let the beer warm a bit, it may have scored higher because it was much better to finish with that it was at the start. It's easy to drink and while the alcohol tapers off with the warming of the beer, it makes for a nice warmer .

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Photo of BillRoth
4.25/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Had on cask at Heavy Seas tasting room. Poured well but with minimal head or lacing. But not unexpected with cask. However happily surprised that it did have a notable pleasant bntaural carbonation. Beer took off with rich aromas of nicely roasted malts; some dried fruit and smokiness, but just accents ...not dominant in any sense. Moved over into the taste very nicely. Here the dark malts let loose with hints of coffee, darker slightly bitter chocolate and the dried fruit aroma became a restrained sugariness more like molasses. The mouthfeel was "spot on"...decadent, rich and medium/medium full body. Great sipper. I thought this was one of the better casked ales I have had. Would get in line for this one. Also, regular Peg Leg is good, but this is absolutely the only way to really enjoy this beer. Cask really elevated the beer to top flight.

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Photo of Act25
3.66/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Basic Brewer from Baltimore. This is mid-pack RIS, worth a try...

A: Not much going on when the drama of a RIS can be so great. Head dissipates to a tan collar and it leaves a little lacing as she goes. Black body.

S: Pleasant. Slightly reminding of a MD great beer, Flying Dog Oyster Stout. Fall-like: it's light malts, with aromas of licorice, chocolate, fall leaves, and dark fruits.

T: The taste follows the smell and offers a pleasant, slightly sweet meld of fall earth, fruit, coffee. A bit of hop bitterness, not enough?

M: Medium bodied. Light carbonation. Not quite the feel I like in my stouts, not creamy or rich. A bit cloying.

O: I'd have it again, but not my first choice. Solid, but back of the pack.

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Photo of Mongrel
3.69/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - More or less black, with a finger of soft, lasting khaki head. Spotty lacing.

S - Cool hops, dark chocolate and char.

T - First impression is a charred, roasty tang. Mellows into a creamy, chocolatety quaff. Touches of tobacco, toffee and prune.

M - Full, creamy, somewhat oily mouthfeel that coats the palate nicely.

Overall, a solid Impy stout -- tasty, somewhat nuanced, but not groundbreaking.

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Photo of Chessmaster
3.57/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice pitch black, with 1-2 inches of chocolate colored head which unfortunately immediately disappears without a trace. The lack of head and complete lack of lacing is quite disappointing.

The flavor and mouthfeel are typical for a stout, with chocolate and caramel/crystal malt most discernible.

This is overall very drinkable, although the appearance detracts from overall enjoyment.

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Photo of delta490
3.71/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A- pours a pitch black, impenetrable to light, with about 1/2 a finger of short-lived mocha colored head. A little lasts around the circumference.

S-subtle, perhaps a little too much so. Slight hints of coffee and sweetness.

T- strong coffee notes, but little else. However, the coffee flavor is really good. But there isn't much more depth.

M- thinner than one would expect for a big, boozy imperial stout. Also a bit of bite from the alcohol.

O-a good bottle. I remember more from having draft. Will update once I get a chance to try on tap.

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Photo of cleve00
2.99/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Not my favorite Imperial by far. I did not enjoy this immensely and had a little higher hopes.

I drank it straight from the bottle. Prune/raisin taste, with a hint of chocolate ad coffee. not a whole lot of complexity.

Would it be better if matured? I don't know and I won't find out because there are MUCH better offerings that I would spend my time on. Life is short and time is fleeting.

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a tulip glass from a 12oz bottle.
Bottled: Feb 2013

Pours a nice pitch black color with a good light tan head. Slightly creamy and dense. The head goes up to about 1 inch and the bubbles are very foamy and dense like a espresso or cappuccino. Retention is excellent with sticky lacing.

Aroma starts off with some nice roasted dark malt notes. Slight ashy and smokey in the nose and some nice slight cocoa sweetness is present as well. The cocoa notes are very nice and powdery with some slight caramel sweetness present as well. Notes of oats are also present as well as some nice bready aromas. As the brew warms the bouquet expands. There is some nice dark roasted and slight coffee notes present as well.

I let it warm for a bit to get a better taste. Starts off with nice midl roast oat and malt notes. Not too intense but flavorful enough. The cocoa notes are nice and powdery and milk chocolatey sweet. Then the roast balances the sweetness out again. The flavor has some nice oat and bready notes that makes the brew pretty drinkable and fluffy. Very well balanced notes of roast and bread with good slight cocoa sweetness. There is some slight smokey notes to the brew and the finish is nice and dry. Mouthfeel is slick and slightly oily a nice medium feel.

Overall this is a great approachable and delicious RIS. The notes aren't too intense and with a bit of age the hops have died down and given way to a nice roasted backbone with some cocoa notes to boast.

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Photo of Hopscat
3.94/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pour into goblet from growler bought at the brewery. My first growler , yippee.
Dark, opaque with little light showing at edges, small head quickly dissipates leaving ring and floating patches of light brown /beige foam.
Smell was a bit disappointing since it was less than I remember from prior tasting from draft @ heavy seas alehouse in Balto. Some coffee, chocolate and maybe a hint of vanilla. Something else there , maybe some hops ?
T- chocolate and coffee upfront with some dark fruits in mid palate along with hops . finish is more chocolate and molasses making an appearance. Pleasantly surprised.
Mouth- really nice feel medium shading to oily , really coats the tongue well . Nice and creamy
Overall this is a nice stout from Heavy Seas, recommend to stout fans

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Photo of Omnium
4/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle > Pint Glass

A - Nice dark brown/black color, about a finger of thick khaki head, mild lacing.
S - Roasted malt, some chocolate and vanilla, and a little smokiness to it, and a tad of earthy hops underneath it all.
T - Excellent balance of malt sweetness, and a little dry flavors, some mild hops in there.
M - Creamy, velvety and full.
O - Vastly overlooked stout, good offering from Heavy Seas.

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Photo of Immortale25
3.85/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Funky Buddha brewery snifter. Label says Purchase Before Aug 13

A- Pours a fully opaque black color with a 1/2 inch light brown head that doesn't retain long before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a small off-centered patch of surface foam. Non-resilient lacing slides quickly down the glass.

S- Somewhat boozy aroma of dark roast and chocolate. Also some dark fruit, molasses and brown sugar.

T- Straightforward stout flavor with moderately heavy dark roast. A bit sweet with little bitterness and more chocolate notes. Pretty drinkable as the alcohol isn't as noticeable as it is in the aroma.

M- Thick, but not RIS thick. Medium-low carbonation is correct and has a mostly full body.

O- A decent stout, though it is a bit hot and not as viscous as I'd like. I'm also beginning to realize I just don't like Heavy Seas' house yeast strain.

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Photo of KYGunner
3.78/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours deep black but has a kind of fizzy look. The head was...fizzy and disappeared quite quickly.

The scent is a little weird, as it has more qualities of a milk stout. Very lactose like with thin dry chocolate and dry malt aromas.

For as dry as the scent was the taste is rather sweet. Sweet dark chocolate or espresso with a bit of coffee and malt. Tasty but not going to rule world.

The feel is as easy as a lager and at over 8 pct ABV this could be dangerous.

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Heavy Seas - Peg Leg Imperial Stout from Heavy Seas Beer
82 out of 100 based on 687 ratings.