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Heavy Seas - Peg Leg Imperial Stout - Heavy Seas Beer

Not Rated.
Heavy Seas - Peg Leg Imperial StoutHeavy Seas - Peg Leg Imperial Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.

681 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 681
Hads: 1,321
Avg: 3.63
pDev: 17.63%
Wants: 27
Gots: 123 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Heavy Seas Beer visit their website
Maryland, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-03-2004

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.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 681 | Hads: 1,321
Photo of Dave1999
4.13/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured pitch black with no head at all and very little lacing.

The smell was dark malts, sweet caramel and a touch of coffee, with a little bit of alcohol.

The taste was very malty, milk chocolate, a little alcohol.

The mouthfeel was a little on the thin side but not terribly so, with medium carbonation.

Overall I really like this beer, a good solid chocolatey malty stout with just a little bit of alcohol but at 8% abv not bad at all. Would definitely buy it again.

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Photo of Minkybut
3.4/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I poured this heavy duty black brew into my tumbler at 45 degrees. The beer looked like a stout and smelled like coffee. The beer was a little sweet tasting with a coffee hit and not too heavy on the chocolate side. Not a real HEAVY tasting beer but you knew it was there. I would buy this again for sure. Like to see it on tap!

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Photo of Mertzy81
3.69/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance: Black, with a little beige head that fades quick, average lacing - seems a bit thin

Smell: Somewhat mild but interesting - burnt, chocolate malts, some coffee, cooked malts, caramel - not a ton going on

Taste: Burnt, a little earthy, roasty coffee - burnt malts, cooked and caramelized malts, some char - not a bad stout, but it really doesn't taste "imperial"

Mouthfeel: Smooth, but could be smoother - very light

Overall: Not bad, just average

I realize that I have been spoiled by some of the more ridiculous takes on the RIS style, but I am pretty certain this is the thinnest imperial stout I've ever had. It's not bad, I just think that it needs more of everything.

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Photo of Theheroguy
4.01/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jet black with a very light brown head

Smooth and chocolaty; a true English stout. The hop presence/bitterness is mild and only there to balance this out and prevent it from being too sweet

The alcohol presence is well but not completely subdued. While you can't taste the alcohol very well it is noticeable in the aroma.

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Photo of JohnnyBarman
3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Single bottle from Premier Gourmet in Buffalo. BBD March 2013.

Poured into a nonic glass, which I happened to have handy. Pours a dark chestnut black, with about a half inch of off-white head that settles into a thin ring. The consistency of the pour makes this brew look more like a porter than a thick imperial.

Nose is sweet and chocolatey, which to me smells heavily of milk - almost as if there was lactose involved at some point. Or it could just smell like milk chocolate. A bit of coffee, roasted malts, cream and sugar here.

A sweet stout, lacking in much depth or robustness, though certainly tasty and easily drinkable. Sweet milk chocolate remains dominant, which transitions to a mild bitter coffee finish. It feels and drinks a great deal like a porter, rather than an imperial stout, which is a bit of a shame. Call this brew a porter and I'm right on board with it, but with an imperial stout I'm expecting a great deal more umph. Still, quite drinkable and the alcohol is well masked.

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Photo of tdm168
4.08/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A - pitch black with a thin, dark brown, foamy head that has decent retention

S - coffee, bread, roasted malts, brown sugar, and chocolate

T - roasted malts, chocolate, alcohol, burnt sugar, faint coffee, dark fruit

M - medium to full bodied, crisp, a bit overcarbonated

This is a nice stout. The body isn't as full as I would like and it's a tad overcarbonated. The flavor is delicious; complex, deep, multi-layered. Though the overcabonation messes with the palate. Otherwise, this is a stout worth trying.

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Photo of Huffs
3.13/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

This review was from April of 2006:
Appearance: Light head with large, quickly disipating bubbles. Dark Brown to Blackish color with a dark red hue.

Taste: Malty to chocolaty with a fairly light texture. Aftertaste is somewhat weak and leaves a dry feel.

Comments: Poor density for a stout with weak taste and head.

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

12 ounce bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a black color with a half finger head and light lacing.

S: Dark chocolate, dark fruits, and roasted malts dominate the nose.

T: Pretty much like the smell. Not as complex as I hope for in a RIS.

M: Medium bodied with decent carbonation.

O: This is a decent beer, but not in the same class as many of the top RIS's available these days. I'm glad I tried it, but I won't be seeking it out again.

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Photo of SLeffler27
3.58/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The chestnut head reaches one and a half inches and settles from sea foam to a creamy texture before lingering for quite a while over a black beer while lace coats the Hoegaarden snifter.

Chocolate and molasses reach out above the alcoholic fumes while nuts and fruit come out after warmth.

The malt is roasted and almost burnt with bittersweet chocolate leading to black licorice. The finish is astringent.

Warming alcohol and a full body accompany the smooth texture while fine carbonation carries away a light astringency. This one is dry, yet leaves a sticky residue on the lips.

This is certainly a sipping beer, but is less suited to a long session with a book than others of the style.

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Photo of raznug
3.88/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: This beer pours a dark black color and is topped with ½” of brown colored head.
Smell: The aroma of this beer is all roasted malts and coffee tasty smelling beer.
Taste: Roasted malts and coffee flavors is all that I can taste which isn’t bad but just wish it would be a little more complex to be a great stout.
Mouthfeel: Thick and oily just like a stout should be a good sipper for a chilly night.

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Photo of panajoe
2.8/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I was not impressed with this beer. It smells better than it tastes. There was a strong aftertaste that lingered long after each swallow. A bitter off-taste that is outside my list of taste adjectives. The beer had good promise when drinking until that aftertaste hit me. I drank from a bottle, like I always do, so I don;t even know or care what color it was or how much head it had. Overall, I liked this beer, but I was disappointed by the strange aftertaste. I could really feel the slightly stronger alcohol content.

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Photo of metter98
3.63/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is essentially jet black in color—traces of dark brown are visible near the edges of the glass when it is held up to a bright light—and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin and dense tan head that quickly died down, leaving some lacing on the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light to moderate aromas of licorice, semisweet chocolate and dark fruits in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and does not have any bitterness or flavors of roasted malts.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied and smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. No dryness is perceptible.
O: This beer is somewhat unusual compared to other beers in the style because it lacks dryness and flavors of roasted malts and seems to be somewhat of a hybrid between a Belgian Strong Dark Ale and a Russian Imperial Stout. Nonetheless, it is relatively easy to drink and hides its alcohol very well.

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Photo of DrinkSlurm
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into pint glass. Pours a deep brown with amber hue and slight tan head. Smells of sweet chocolate roasted malt. Nice bitter aroma as well. Taste is a bit woody earthy boozey. Its slightly bitter but sweet. It has a nice smooth aged feel. Nice imperial stout especially for a year round and cheap 6er.

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Photo of AmitC
3.66/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Well, some expectations from an imperial stout.

Pours very dark brown color with a good head. More than a finger thick. Coffee tan colored. Absolutely dark pitch black in the glass.

Smell : Coffee, caramel and roasted barley. Smell is a lot subdued considering this is stronger strength stout. Should have been somewhat richer.

Taste: Not disappointing but not exciting either. Very normal porter/stout like taste and that says a lot. Nose follows you to the tongue. A little alcoholic, but nothing else great about it.

Mouth feel : Medium bodied with decent carbonation. Could have been more fuller.

Overall good drinkable stout but nothing great. Just a tad above average. Nothinh 'Imperial' about it.

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Photo of Mojo
3.83/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Well I might have loved this had I not had an Old Raspy a few nights ago. As it is this is a pretty good imperial stout, but obviously not in Old Raspy's league. It pours up as black as ebony with no head to speak of and very little lacing. Smell is mostly coffee and alcohol. Taste is dark chocolate, coffee, some molasses, and alcohol on the finish. Mouthfeel is just average. Not great, not bad. Overall it's really pretty good, even if it's not the standard for this style.

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Photo of gcamparone
3.7/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from A 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A- dark, nearly opaque black with a 2 inch light brown head that sticks around for a while. Nice stringy lacing

S- dark chocolate, roasted coffee. Pleasant and inviting

T- could be a little more flavorful, but I'm getting nicely toasted malt, dark chocolate, and warming malt. Slightly bitter , black coffee aftertaste. Dry

M- thick and robust, almost like a chocolate milkshake.

Overall, a pretty run of the mill imperial stout, but an enjoyable brew nonetheless. Try

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.75/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into pint glass

Appearance – Pours a lightly transparent black color thin a one finger tan head. The head has moderate retention but fades to give a lighter level of lacing.

Smell – The aroma is a mix of dark chocolate, roasted malt, coffee and some dark fruits and caramel smells which sweeten up the aroma. It is light overall, but pleasant.

Taste – The taste begins with the roasted malt and some more bitter coffee flavors up front. Soon a sweeter caramel and chocolate flavor come to the tongue. There is a light hop flavor that also enters the profile, helping balance both the sweet and roast. In the end the sweetness fades some again and a very light alcohol flavor comes into the taste, giving a light warming feel on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the creamier and thicker side with the carbonation level being lower. Both are rather standard for an imperial stout and good for the roasted flavors of the brew.

Overall – Not a bad brew to give a try. It has some nice roasted flavors as well as a complementing sweet taste that create a rather pleasing taste. Well worth a try.

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Photo of MoreThanWine
2.5/5  rDev -31.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured a reluctant 1/16" mocha head which faded fast. The body is dark as coffee. There's really very little smell, even as it fully warmed, just some roasted malt. The taste really isn't much different from the smell, subtle and mainly the roasted malt. The label says it's 8% alcohol but even that seems less. For a "Russian Imperial Stout" this beer really falls short. Don't go shipping this off to Russia, you might start a war.

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Photo of larryi86
3.78/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter

A- Black with an small tan head.

S- A little on the weak side, roasted coffee, dark chocolate, hints of dark fruits.

T- More bitter and earthy than the smell, roasted malts, coffee, some dark chocolate.

M- Smooth, medium body.

O- Good stout and pretty tasty, but I have had a lot of better stouts.

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Photo of kylehay2004
3.62/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed at the brewery prior to the tour.

A: single finger head with poor retention and decent lacing on a jet black body with just a hint of light getting through.

S: coffee, dark chocolate, gingerbread and roasted malts.

T: roasted malts with both light coffee and espresso notes up front with vanilla and dark chocolate coming in late in the finish.

M: medium body and moderate carbonation. Nothing special here.

Overall: a good beer but imperial stouts are usually flagship beers so often that although this is a good stout, it isnt great and doesnt stand up against the stiff competition of the genre.

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Photo of thecheapies
3.73/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A little side-by-side tasting of Heavy Seas Peg Leg Stout '10 vs '11.

Best before March of '12:

Pours with a khaki head, a good amount of spritz, and excellent head retention. Opaque black body with no light getting through. 4.0

Mild cocoa, roasted grain, coffee, brittle toffee, and a hint of smoke. Smells robust and well-kilned. 3.5

Spicy hops balance this enchanting brew. Wealth of roasted grain flavors, cocoa powder, and light smoke. Wafery quality in there, too. Warmth from the booze upon the swallow, but otherwise a lighter-strength RIS. Very light pineyness follows the middle with a spicy, dry finish. Good balance, light on character. 4.0

Fuller than medium body with medium carbonation. Pretty smooth. Calculated strength. Not particularly rich or creamy or hefty. Actually drinks too easily. 3.5

Best before June of '11:

Darker khaki head that's almost light brown, some bubbles show up rising along the side of the glass. The retention is weak. A foamy ring is left on top. Same ebony body. 3.5

Nose shows some tannic oxidation. Some dark chocolate, light caramel, cardboard. The coffee and smokiness are all but gone. 3.0

The flavor has changed here. Less hops, obviously, but there's more of a sweetness to the malt that leans toward the side of milk chocolate. There's some caramel and wet earth to add to the mix. Not as dusty or chalky, and certainly not as dry. More of a dried berry fruit character shows up, but it's really hiding in the shadows. It's interesting, but it's gone a bit downhill. 3.5

A little slicker in body which fills the mouthfeel out more. Lighter on carbonation. Mellowed out on the alcohol even more so. More of a sipper. 4.0

Overall for both: Peg Leg was a little experiment, really. When I stashed one away, I forgot about it. When I saw it in a shop cooler recently, I remembered, picked up the fresh(er) one and dug out the one I put away. Final verdict: Peg Leg does not age so gracefully. There may be some who prefer it with age, but it really doesn't hold up. It doesn't do poorly (like thin out, sour, or oxidize repulsively), it just begins to de-evolve. It's still a nice little cheap Imperial Stout, either way.

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Photo of mactrail
3.83/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark and rich, as advertised. Malty but a little sharper and less intense than a lot of beer in this category. The slightly lighter style is quite welcome to me. Plenty of flavor, a butterscotch maltiness cut by the burnt sugar and a hoppy background. Mellow but full of dark flavors, a hint of cherries, and a dose of raisins.

Attractive dark mahogany in the tall Petrus glass. Pours with a nice head, and moderately carbonated on the tongue. A pleasurable dark beer, and more drinkable for being a couple of clicks less alcoholic than many RIS.

Heavy Seas has the decency to put this in six packs at a reasonable price. From the 12 oz bottle bought at Monde Market in Philadelphia.

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

Purchased a 6pk at Wegmans in Warrington, PA


Poured and enjoyed from a DFH Signature Glass

A - Pours a jet black color. A one finger head on the initial pour that fades to a light skim. Decent lacing remains after drinking.

S - A roasted malt aroma, slightly sweet smell

T - A nice combination of roasted malts mixed with a slight but not off putting hoppy bitterness. Flavors of chocolate and mocha are there also. Not overly sweet but on the sweeter side. Rather creamy. The alcohol is well disguised but pokes through after sitting a bit.

M - Lighter consistency for a stout but not watery. Light to moderate carbonation.

O - I enjoyed this beer. It's a middle of the road stout, easy drinking and I'll have no problem finishing the rest of my 6pk. Worth a try although there are bigger, bolder imperial stouts available.


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Photo of Tucquan
3.52/5  rDev -3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this on 2012-04-30 in Columbia, PA

A - Opaque dark brown with a 1-finger tan head that quickly fades to a skim coating and leaves little lacing.

S - Light molasses, bread and chocolate. Mild but pleasant aroma.

T - Sweet medium-roasted malt, prunes, cherries, dab of chalky chocolate malt followed by a well-balanced amount of hop and roast bitterness. The aftertaste is of tart cherries, sweet roasted malt and some bitterness; none of which linger very long.

M - Medium-heavy body and medium carbonation. Substantial, thick and smooth. Nice.

O - An enjoyable RIS on the lower ABV side. Didn't blow me away but was enjoyable. The price was on the low side for the style; perhaps because it's pretty local. I'd have it again.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.46/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Sam Smith pint glass.

A: Pours a borderline pitch black color (which provides very dark burgundy near the edges of the beer when held to sunlight). The head is a frothy two finger medium tan color that slowly but surely recedes, leaving a nice layering of lacing on the glass.

S: There's the usual melange of coffee, chocolate, roast, and dark fruit one would expect from a RIS. Nice smell, but nothing earth shattering or particularly strong.

T: This is definitely on the sweeter side for a RIS, dominated by chocolate, dark fruits, and licorice. Little in the way of complexity, which is kind of disappointing. The fruitiness increases on the finish, but afterwards it suffers from an exceedingly short aftertaste. All in all, this is enjoyable, but flawed. It needs more robustness to balance the fruity flavors, both during the mid and after tastes.

M: Very smooth with the right amount of body, but something's off base. Maybe it's the lack of boldly lingering flavor, but there's something in the body that hinders drinkability for whatever reason. Needs more dry bitterness, too. Low carbonation.

O: I think its solid, but it just doesn't compare with the heavy hitters in the RIS world. On the plus side, it's a very good dessert beer to pair with some Ben and Jerry's Cherry Garcia ice cream. Probably the best value RIS on the market (less than $10 for a 6 pack), so I can't be too hard on it.

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Heavy Seas - Peg Leg Imperial Stout from Heavy Seas Beer
82 out of 100 based on 681 ratings.