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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

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1,164 Ratings
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Ratings: 1,164
Reviews: 656
rAvg: 3.65
pDev: 12.6%
Wants: 20
Gots: 52 | 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:
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 added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-03-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,164 | Reviews: 656 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of beerthulhu
3.88/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a dark, near opaque brown color with a 1 finger foamy light tan head that soon faded to a sparse layering.

S: chocolate, coffee and a light smokiness. There is some dried fruit (raisins) and a light boozy alcohol aroma as well.

T: robust with roasted grains and burnt toast, black coffee beans and bitter chocolate. There was a slight alcohol presence (rum raisin). The beer had a rich chocolate malting and some spicy hopping in the finish.

M: light-medium fullness with a nice dark roasted malt lacing on the tongue.

D: Fairly good drinkability per style, drinking much bigger then its advertised 8.0%abv but definitely worth a try and decent per style.

beerthulhu, Mar 15, 2008
Photo of mynie
4.1/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours jet black, sadly translucent and with a head that should be bigger for an RIS that's only 8.0%. Still, it's pretty.

Smells awful smooth for an 8 percent stout, though. Big malt and mild hop, but nothing too intense or alcohol burny.

Tastes very much like it smells--smooth. Big burst of malt starts things off with light hints of smoky peat along with a more generic, portery roasted malt feel. This gives way to a slightly bitter middle in which I THINK I can taste a bit of hops but I'm not sure if that's something else... Finishes on a very lightly alcoholic node of yeast.

For an RIS it's a little too tame, but it's still waaaay too smooth for a beer that's got so much alcohol.

mynie, Mar 12, 2008
Photo of Kraken
3.85/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cracked the top and poured vigorously from 12oz bottle into Harp Pint glass. Nice almost pitch black in color, very thin tan head, with good to moderate lacing. The stout smells fantastic, malts, coca, herbal notes with an undeniable tinge of alcohol. Very solid taste, more of the coca and malt. Herbal undertones, with a somewhat sweet and mildly alcohol finish. Overall this is a very nice imp stout for the price. Too sweet, and heavy for a session beer, nice economical sipper!

Kraken, Mar 11, 2008
Photo of AshevilleSippin
4.53/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Short Version:
Wonderful warm creamy and complex stout with subdued roast, big chocolate, well balanced hops, and a drinkability that is uncommon in a beer this large. Heavy Seas is the bomb. Period.

OK, I've had 5 of these already and have to rate this one because it's the last in my six. Though I'm certain to buy it by the case in the future.

Pours like a dream. Thick 2 1/2 finger dark pecan colored head. Had a unique 'aftershock' effect where there is a slight pause after you finish the pour and the head reaches the top of the glass and then finds another gear and gushes up and over the side. Could easily be a 3+ finger head if a standard pint glass could contain it. I need to learn to pour these gingerly.

Head has exceptional durability and had the tempurpedic micro-bubble look. It develops deep craters over time and leaves a distinctly bubblebath residue on the sides as the head settles.

Color is deep, deep, deep opaque black. Tar or creosote comes to mind. High-swirling a half glass up to a bright light reveals dark brownish pigment rather than ruby or mahogony.

On the nose I get some sweet malt, a little alchohol, and chocolate. Some bready malt roastiness coming through but it is very subdued compared to many stouts. Some nippy hops poking their heads up in the background as well. There is a hard-to-describe 'warm creamy' smell about it. Maybe 'cuz this is the last of my 6 pack and I've been tipped off and know what is coming in the taste...

The taste is decadent. It's on the strong side of medium bodied with a big rich flavor that starts strong at the inlet, warms its way around the palate, and delivers the goods all the way down and out. More malty than bitter. Creamy chocolate with subtle nut flavors and an interesting faint hop tang. Alcohol is there too but ever so slight and not distracting. Just enough to make this thing stand forward proudly and announce itself as BEER. There is a certain creaminess about it mid palate that keeps bringing me back for another sip.

As it warms the roastiness increases and the chocolate characteristics pick up even more. This is one of the most well balanced stouts I've had. It's so warm and flavorful yet is one of the most drinkable stouts going. It doesn't get heavy and bomb you out after one or two. I could literally drink 4 of 5 of these and not get that overdone sensation where you are looking for an ESB to cut it and scour the palate like Ajax. Much the way I have to drink orange or grapefuit juice with bacon or sausage. Milk just doesn't cut the grease. You don't get that sensation with this stout. You can just keep indulging in its decadence without getting sickened. VERY bad combo... especially at 8% ABV!!!

Lace is out of this world. Just like the Heavy Seas Hop3 I rated. It's splattered and clumped all over the glass in huge marvelous creamy splotches. Unlike the Hop3 there is some remote semblance of a ring structure whereas the Hop3 was completely random.

This beer is quite complex and robust in flavor. The Heavy Seas line of beers out of Clipper City have quickly become my de facto favorite beers you can get in a bottle. I've had three different ones now and can't wait to try more.

AshevilleSippin, Mar 10, 2008
Photo of VikingBeer
4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

12 0z. bottle from Greenwood Spirits (Bowling Green, KY)

Appearance: Pours an opaque, nearly black color into a Unibroue "tulip." Scant 1" head appears reluctantly, even with a moderately aggressive pour, fades within a couple of minutes.

Smell: Coffee and bitter chocolate aromas mix with a powerful whiff of fermented malted grains (reminds me of silage). As the beer warms, I detect a hint of dark tobacco, like a Maduro cigar wrapper.

Taste: Make sure you drink this above 50 degrees at minimum. When colder, the alcohol comes through far more than 8% ABV should, in a very unpleasant cheap-vodka way. When the beer warms a bit, however, this disappears and the beer becomes dangerously drinkable. The first hit of flavor mimics the nose, with chocolate/coffee and dark, fermented malts. These are closely followed by oranges (strangely reminiscent of Curacaos in a Witbier) and a mustardy spiciness from the hops. Aftertaste is mostly coffee and chocolate, but with whiffs of tobacco occasionally revisiting.

Mouthfeel: Warming, and a bit tingly after awhile as the 8% kicks in. Moderately firm, but more like a dry stout/thicker porter than an Imperial. Thus, I have to give it a 3 for deviating from the style, despite liking the way this beer's mouthfeel fits with its other characteristics.

Drinkability/Final Thoughts: As I mentioned earlier, at the proper temperature this is a dangerously drinkable brew, especially during the cold months. Complex, with layers of flavor that set it apart from the "common" stout, its smoothness and lighter body make it drinkable enough for me to sip a few over a couple of hours. Highly recommended.

VikingBeer, Mar 08, 2008
Photo of Redwood21
4.1/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: the head is thin, but like most clipper city beers, it lasts and lasts and sticks. the color is black with a an head

S: chocolate and coffee malts, maybe burnt toast

T: very smooth and somewhat light in body yet full of flavor there is a coffee and chocolate flavor that overlaps some. there is definitely some roasted cereal grain kinda thing going on as well. and a rather hidden but deep dark fruit like almost plumish but not as tart

M/D: smooth yet way too drinkable, not just because its a solid beer, but because its 8% and doesn't feel it. I have reviewed a lot of the "top" beers in this style and that doesn't make me an expert by any means, but this beer has a place in there, not as aggressive or assertive, but solid and tasty

Redwood21, Mar 05, 2008
Photo of dreadnatty08
4.08/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Drink by April 08, seriously?
Pours not quite opaque but very black color with a slim quarter inch dirty brown head which falls to a trace. Aromas are very roasty, lots of chocolate malts, coffee notes, very little hop aroma, relatively high ester production as well given all the dark fruits. Alcohol notes are subtle. On the palate, the chocolate and black malts continue to provide the bulk of the flavor. Incredibly smooth however so I imagine roasted malts have been kept low. Fruity esters provide the only counterpoint with a slight floral hop note in the finish. Body is only medium high, low for an RIS, but given its interpretation as an 8% abv, understandable. Carbonation is also spot on. Not as big as I like my RISs, but a solid beer nonetheless.

dreadnatty08, Mar 04, 2008
Photo of BravoTwo
3.85/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Good opaque black brew, with a minimal tannish head.

S - Roasted, dark malt. A little bit of a twangy coffee bitterness in the nose.

T - Toasty dark flavor, with coffee and dark choclate notes. Tangy sweetness, with not too much bitterness. Well balanced.

M - Not too thick, with good carbonation.

D - Nicely drinkable imperial stout, paired with dessert would be a good choice for this beer. My wife enjoyed this beer, and she is generally a light lager drinker. We drank it with some Girl Scout cookies (chocolate peanut butter) and they went well together.

BravoTwo, Mar 04, 2008
Photo of jwc215
3.68/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Purchase by Feb. '08 notched on side - Tried day after:

Pours blackish brown with a thin head that becomes a bubbly patch.

The smell is of dark malt - chocolate/coffee beans and caramel.

The taste is of dark malt - chocolate/coffee beans - and caramel/toffee. Cream and citric fruitiness mix in. Tasty, though not quite as full in flavor as it could be for the style.

Not a bad stab at the style - hits on the main points, but on the thin side.

jwc215, Mar 02, 2008
Photo of dsa7783
3.35/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Single, 12 oz bottle copped from Total Wine and More in West Orange...
Most Clipper City brews I've sampled have been pretty good, so for the cheap price, decided to give this one a shot as well...
Afterr an aggressive pouring, the appearance turned out to be a jet-black, engine-oil, ebony hue with a gigantic foamy and frothy tan, reddish head that exhibited tremendous staying power before slowly and gradually receding and leaving a fine layer of lacing around the glass...
Smell was replete with cocoa, dark-chocolate, and burnt espresso nuances...
Taste strongly mirrored the flavor, with a heavy suggestion of roasted malts, burnt chocolate, thick, rich cappuccino, powerful vanilla essences and heavy, dark sugars...
Creamy mouthfeel, with a decent level of drinkability that took a slight hit due to the rich and ultra-thick combination of flavors...
Not the best Imperial Stout I've sampled, but for the price, certainly worth a shot...

dsa7783, Mar 02, 2008
Photo of tempest
2.85/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Looks nice, but that's about it. The aroma is of black grains, dark chocolate, and vodka. The dark flavors are nice, but too mellow, and the alcohol element is too overpowering. The taste has a light burnt flavor, with a relatively creamy feel, balancing bitterness and booze. Overall, the flavor is too low and the alcohol is too obvious. With so many good RIS options, pass on this one.

tempest, Feb 29, 2008
Photo of schoolboy
4.18/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Heavy Seas deserves a little blind faith. They produce good stuff.

I had not tried this Stout and I was in the mood. It definitely works. The taste is compelling and EXTREMELY drinkable for this style. It doesn't hit you upside the head.

I noticed a funky smell coming from my glass (like a sewer, really). Maybe it's me! If so, I'll revise the review!

schoolboy, Feb 29, 2008
Photo of wheelinshirt
3.58/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz brown longneck from Abe's in Bethlehem, purchased as part of a mixed six-pack and poured into a snifter to be shared with a friend while bottling my latest batch of homebrew. Oh what a time we live in.

Pours fairly dark, though not completely black with minimal chocolate colored head that dissapates quickly and leaves no lacing.

Smell is fairly weak, or maybe subtle or smooth if you are an optimist. There is enough of the dark roasted malts that let you know that this is a RIS. Not a lot of booze, and at 8% i wouldn't really expect or appreciate it.

Taste is fairly similar, a very smooth and easy drinking RIS. It gives up a lot of the bold, in your face flavor that is part of the appeal of a lot of RIS's, but it does so in order to provide a nice, simple, and enjoyable drinking experience. I would have another, but i probably won't purchase another. If I am in the mood for a RIS, I really want something big, bad, and bold. Recommended if you want an easier introduction to the style.

wheelinshirt, Feb 19, 2008
Photo of jbphoto88
3.7/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The color of rich dark chocolate with garnet highlights. The head is slow to form and dissipates very quickly, leaving spots of tan foam here and there.

Smells of sweet roasted malts, chocolate and dark toffee. Quite a pleasing nose that even hints at some coffee.

A creamy feel and chocolate, roast coffee and a light caramel start this taste adventure with a dry malty flavor in the middle and a dry but sweet aftertaste. The 8% works with the dryness and warms the pallet.

This isn't my favorite russian imperial stout but its a good easy drinking one. Its smooth not chalky and a nice example of a R.I.S.

jbphoto88, Feb 15, 2008
Photo of ffejherb
3.93/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle into Mad Elf challice on 2/12/08.

A - Very oily black appearance with thin, whispy brown head and some mild carbonation. Head mostly disappeared and left minimal, spotty lacing.

S - Bitter dark chocolate and roasted coffee initially step forward, followed by a mellow toffee sweetness. Some earthy bitterness presents itself as well, but its a bit more subdued. Some dark cherry way in the back, which is quite nice.

T - Tasty mix of chocolate and coffee notes, neither of which overpower the flavor. The sweet and bitter flavors complement each other quite nicely. Chocolate is a bit more pronounced in the finish, with some mild residual bitterness.

M - Medium, slightly chewy body. Starts off with a slick, oily texture that quickly transforms into a very bubbly, prickly carbonated mouthfeel. Finish is mildly dry. Alcohol is well concealed.

D - One of the most drinkable stouts I've had. Perhaps it's a bit too carbonated, but its flavorful and it goes down easily.

ffejherb, Feb 12, 2008
Photo of far333
3.88/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Opaque motor oil brownish black with a sight beige head that dissipates quickly. Light aroma of dark malt and cocoa.

Flavors of roasted malt and molasses, dark brown sugar and chocolate, some raisin and smokey burnt wood.

Full mouthfeel, moderately carbonated with a tingly finish. A tannic powdery feel lingers. Good drinkability, but feels more like a big porter than an imperial stout.

far333, Feb 10, 2008
Photo of paulthebeerguru
3.95/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clipper City Peg Leg
12 oz. brown bottle

Poured into a straight pint. This stout pours an opaque black with a ruby red ring around the top of the beer. A rich tan head dissipates rather quickly and vanishes almost without a trace. Sweet aromas of molasses and raisins, rich nose is very intriguing. Slight roasted coffee aromas as well. Warm rich tastes of dark cocoa and coffee, the molasses is definitely present. Raisins on the finish really make this interesting. No real strong tastes of the high alcohol, which is enjoyable. Mouthfeel is really nice, the palate is full of flavor and makes the mouth salivate. Medium carbonation. Extremely drinkable and could be my new contender to Gonzo when I am in the mood for an Imperial Stout/Porter.

paulthebeerguru, Feb 02, 2008
Photo of Lothar666
2.23/5  rDev -38.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A- Very foamy tan head that was not very creamy and much lighter than some of the other RIS heads I have had. A bad sign. Receeded fairly quickly. Body was a dark brown, almost black but didn't quite make it as tinges of translucent lighter brown were noted around the edges of the glass; another bad sign.

S- Dark roasted malts mixed in with some chocolate and coffee. Standard fare for an average RIS though not incredibly impressive compared to some others in the style.

T- Sweet, complex dark malts and chocolate that should be overwhelmingly present in this style are faint at best for a beer that calls itself a russian imperial stout. The strongest and most pronounced flavor present is that of day old coffee with a slight sting of alcohol in the background but no lingering aftertaste and a tiny hop bite in the finish that is not enough to compensate the acidy coffee flavor. A very poorly balanced beer.

M- Way too thin to be called an RIS. Texture is incredibly important to this style and this beer just doesn't cut it. There is none of the obligatory coating of the tongue or mouth, nor is there any of the oily texture that defines the style of a Russian Imperial Stout. A horrible example and a bastardization of one of my favorite styles of beer.

D- Thin, watery and unpleasant, easy to gulp I guess if I were to hold my nose. The somewhat weak ABV for the style still managed to be overpowering and annoying compared to the other flavors in the brew; this is sad considering I have drank RIS's with more than twice the ABV that were still more smooth and drinkable (and some damn good beers, by the way). This was utterly disapointing and almost a drain pour, though to do such a thing goes completely against my principles. I will warn others to stay away. First timers, please do not take this brew as any indicator of the style to which it supposedly belongs. There are many wonderful examples of Russian Imperial Stouts out there that are an absolute joy to drink. This is just not one of them.

Lothar666, Jan 31, 2008
Photo of Proteus93
3.5/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Dark brown to black. Light, tan head... lighter in colour than expected for such a dark brew.

S: Quite rich and round. Some fruity esters, bittersweet chocolate/cocoa. Some smoked/burnt grains * light coffee aromas.

T & M: Thin on the front, and fills out more from middle to finish, both in flavour and feel. Becomes a little sticky, coating the mouth with some slightly bready tastes. Toasted grains, sweet chocolate malts, and some coffee. Somewhat buttery/oily hops bring a touch of bitter balance.

D: Somewhat drinkable for its class. Not too bad tasting (though there are better out there), full enough to not totally disappoint, easy for a good & slow drink. As with most stouts, it's a little higher in alcohol, so not to be overdone. Personally, I probably wouldn't go with it again, though.

Proteus93, Jan 29, 2008
Photo of nrpellegrini
2.8/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Bottle poured to pint glass.

A: 1 finger head/ caramel color, deep cloudy black,
S: hint of chocolate, hoppy, earthy almost like dirt
T: huge flavor, a lot of hops but no strong bite, a bland bitter taste, medicine, sore after taste
M: warm feeling, heavy, thick
D: not so good, couldn't finish it

My first Imperial Stout.
Not something I'll reach for anytime soon.

nrpellegrini, Jan 28, 2008
Photo of Rainintheface
3.13/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle into SA glass. April '08

A: dark brown, almost black with a one finger tan head that stays around a short while

S: mostly dark chocolate and roasted coffee with some alcohol lurking

T: a little bit of chocolate, faint vanilla and again with lurking alcohol

M: medium- full bodied with a sticky mouthfeel. a tad bitter

D: not bad. I'd have again but there are better.

Rainintheface, Jan 26, 2008
Photo of goschool
3.28/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This one made it to Los Angeles courtesy of bwyker.

Appearance: The pour is a deep dark brown with red highlights and a small tan head.

Smell: The nose has a lovely sweet aroma featuring notes of bourbon, vanilla, semi-sweet chocolate, and espresso.

Taste: The flavor profile does not live up to the nose. Instead I'm getting a much less delectable combination of stale coffee, earthy hops, bitter dark chocolate, and boozy spiced rum.

Mouthfeel: It's medium-bodied and sticky with a nice amount of carbonation.

Drinkability: I really wish the taste would've lived up to the smell.

goschool, Jan 22, 2008
Photo of cichief
3.88/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on draft at the Frisco Grille, Columbia, MD.

A- Pours a deep dark brown, almost opaque, with a very thin brown head.

S- Not much there, slight licorice hint, not sweet malt.

T- Very subtle licorice and vanilla flavor, no chocolate nor coffee, balanced.

M- Very smooth, lots of small bubbles, thickish on the tongue.

D- No strong alcohol presence, decently balanced, but nothing special.

cichief, Jan 20, 2008
Photo of Dodo2step
4.47/5  rDev +22.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I purchased this beer at Malones Bar and Grill in Harrisburg, PA.

The appearance was very dark and rich!

The smell was very inviting as well.

I am not one who likes Stouts but i can tell you that i enjoyed this beer very much.

I would definitely purchase a sixpack of this beer if given the opportunity. I really enjoyed this stout and look forward to having another one!

Dodo2step, Jan 19, 2008
Photo of kuranes
3.8/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. into pint glass.

A: Pours thick and dark with overly thin and bubbly head. Unimpressive.

S: Smells strongly of hops with notes of roasted barley, chocolate, and fruity sweetness. Really nice smell on this one.

T: Primarily earthy taste strongly evocative of roasted coffee and chocolate. A light fruitiness is also present. Not as much alcohol taste as expected. Nice bitterness at the finish. Well done.

M: Medium body, slightly bitter and sticky aftertaste. Could be a little thicker.

D: Pretty good, nothing special. I'd buy it again, though.

kuranes, Jan 18, 2008
Heavy Seas - Peg Leg Imperial Stout from Heavy Seas Beer
83 out of 100 based on 1,164 ratings.