Sue - Yazoo Brewing Company

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223 Reviews

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Reviews: 223
Hads: 707
Avg: 4.15
pDev: 19.04%
Wants: 196
Gots: 160 | FT: 19
Brewed by:
Yazoo Brewing Company visit their website
Tennessee, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ckeegan04 on 07-29-2009

The south is famous for smoking everything. Why not beer? Sue is a big, rich, smoky malt bomb of a beer, with mellow smokiness coming from barley malts smoked with cherry wood, and assertive bitterness from Galena and Perle hops to cleanse the finish.

Original tap version was 7.5% ABV, bottled version is up to 9%.
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Reviews: 223 | Hads: 707
Photo of BriarRose
5/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Tried this beer when we lived close to Nashville a few years ago. AMAZING. Clean finish, lighter body, and chocolate/coffee overtones make this beer one of my favorites. Only problem? Now I live in Indiana, and they only distribute in/around Tennessee. As an overall brewery, Yazoo is young, but they DEFINITELY have potential.

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Photo of BaalDagon
5/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This was my first, in what I consider, true venture into the world of "craft" beer. WOW! I cannot even begin to explain the explosion of taste that hit my mouth. Right off the bat, the intense flavor of dark chocolate that fills the palate can only be akin to the finest dark's that I have had the pleasure of sampling and baking with. Next is little hints of all kinds of flavors from licorice to cherrys and then some that I wasn't too sure about... so that will be left up to you to decide; however, they are all wrapped nicely in a wonderfully creamy body that I liken to liquid silk. Lastly, the boldness of the smoked flavor that would rival ANY fine cigar rolls over the palate like a cleansing rinse. Amazingly, there are no cloying attributes that one would figure would go with such intensity. As would stand to reason, as it got slightly warmer, it fullness of the flavors completely woke up forcing me to turn off the boobtube, dim the lights, and throw on some Monk. It is a perfect size in portion so that as you come closer to the end of the bottle, the better the experience without over staying its welcome. I have added a few more beers to my "craft" experience, but unfortunately... I feel that all I have done was try to chase the experience I've had with Yazoo Brewing Company's Sue. I heartily encourage this beer to anyone looking for a GREAT craft beer, but be forewarned... it has a habit of spoiling the taste-buds!

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Photo of lnashsig
4.97/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Many thanks to TheGordianKnot for the chance to taste this one- he told me all about Sue, and I'm thrilled to try it out. Bottled dated April 2011. Poured into my dfh snifter, pours a pitch black color, tan head that fills the glass and then recedes quickly. I almost see a tinge of red in the head. Smell- this is so unique to me. Cherry sweetness, mixed with the smoke from the malt, some charcoal from the smoke flavor. Wow- very complex. Taste- wow. first you get the bitter chocolate, then you get the thick coffee grind, then you get the incredible cherry sweetness. Reminds me of biting into a fancy dark chocolate piece of candy with cherry filling. So decadent, so complex. Mouthfeel- there's a nice thick syrupy feel to this that fits well. This is a big bad imperial porter, and the mouthfeel makes that apparent. Drinkability- a sipper for sure, but enjoying every drop. Love me some Sue.

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Photo of Jody_Lester
4.93/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Maybe I'm a bit partial because this is a hometown beer, but Yazoo Sue truly delivers. Black as night and drinks like a dream. This Smoky Porter is perfect to pick up for $5 a bottle after a long day at work.

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Photo of Ungertaker
4.82/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on date of August 10, 2011

12oz bottle poured into a Deschutes snifter.

A- Black with a one-finger khaki head that slowly fades and leaves a lacing that quickly descends down the glass.

S- Dried cherries, smoky malts, dark chocolate

T- Bitter dark chocolate, smoke, tobacco, dried fruits. The tobacco, smoke and chocolate linger at the finish.

M- Thinner than the bold aroma and black appearance led me to expect, but still medium-bodied. The carbonation is typical of a smoked porter.

O- An extremely complex brew. Most smoked beers I have tried have been very smoke-forward. This one is not. The flavors are complimented by the smokiness.

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Photo of jacobseyb
4.8/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from the bottle into a standard pint glass. Pours a very dark alomst opaque brown with an off-white head that dissipates quickly and leaves no lacing. Smell is of coffee and roasted malts, smokiness is evident though almost closer to mesquite in aroma. Taste is definitely smoky, again more mesquite-like in flavor, with some smoothness of coffee. Feel has ample carbonation, very tight and crisp. Excellent beer with great characteristics, very enjoyable.

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Photo of tmm313
4.73/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A - Basically black. Poured a thick 3 finger head that lingered for a while. Super sticky lacing.

S- Chocolate, roast, dark fruit, earthy hop, and a touch of coffee. Muted compared to other categories.

T- Deeply complex. Many characteristics shifted in and out, changed with each sip, and varied as the temperature changed. There were multiple forms of chocolate (dark, milk, baker's), toffee, licorice, coffee, dark cherry, wood, leather, smoke, earthy hop, grapefruit, citrus rind, and spice. Virtually no trace of alcohol. As it warmed to room temp, the spiciness almost seemed minty. I specifically remember how the finish would bring a rush of grapefruit that almost swirled itself into a creamy chocolate flavor that faded into a minty like burn. At the time, I didn't have a way to document what was happening in detail, so I just tried to remember what I could.

M- Creamy, almost oily. Heavier side of medium body, but somehow easy going down. Drying, with nice subtle spice.

O- I was blown away by Sue. Its darkness, aroma, complexity, and thickness were much more Imperial Stout than American Porter to me, yet it was somehow easy drinking. One of the best Porters I've ever had.

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Photo of CrookedStill
4.7/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled second week of January

Pours pitch black with a one finger tan head that quickly falls.

Tons of smoky malts upfront with chocolate and coffee following.

Wow. The smoke flavor hits first but is balanced perfectly against a wonderful bitter chocolate aftertaste. Taste like a bigger version of Yazoo's Sly Rye Porter. The 9% alcohol is hidden very well and there's little to no trace of it.

Good, slightly low, carbonation with a body that is very full, smooth and creamy. Excellent texture that really compliments the other elements of this very enjoyable beer.

By far one of the best, if not THE best, porters I've ever had the pleasure of drinking. Everything about this beer works together perfectly and the product is something that's truly special. Great smoky aroma and flavor against a background of dark chocolate. While I haven't always been impressed with Yazoo's brews, their porters are nothing short of amazing and are among my favorites.

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Photo of CampusCrew
4.7/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

appearance: deep dark black, nearly ebony, loaded head

smell: A mix of chocolate and coffee competing together

taste: loads of chocolate. I was wondering if this was oak aged then I read in the notes that it had cherry wood smoked malt. The flavors from the wood are there and the smoke it sublte. super dry finish is the only downfall

mouthfeel: full bodied porter

drinkability: easily one of the best porters Ive had. Very nice!

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Photo of Dotcubed
4.68/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

I go this a few weeks back in late March on a trip from NW Arkansas to Greer, SC.
Picked it up on a whim at a random store that had a huge liquor section. More brandy that I thought would sell in the Memphis area.

I didn't realize this was so well rated when I picked it up off the shelf. Looks like a porter, came out with a generous foam that died away. Yet, that lovely foam is quick to reappear and provide a nice lace.

Stunning Cherry Smoke aroma! But there's something metallic behind it, so it's all but perfect.

Roasted chocolate porter but with a Fruity Dried Cherry body; some burnt carbonized sweetness.
Now I wish I had two of these, a wood fireplace and some perfectly cooked duck breasts.

It's a heavy dark beer that makes me wanting another. This beer is evil. You should buy it.
Then you should buy me some.

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Photo of stephens101
4.67/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A huge thanks to JohnQVegas for hooking me up with a number of these. Going to put a couple down, but just have to tear into one now.

Off a medium pour a bubbly tan head grows to two-fingers, and perfectly fills the SA specialty glass. As the bubbles pop furious the froth fades and leaves some random curly spines of lace behind. Jet black in color with no light penetration, although some slight ruby hues are barely discernible at the very edge.

Aroma involves a good mix of sweet and smoky notes with black licorice, cherry wood, a slight earthy mustiness, some cotton candy and a distant hoppiness which all evolve into a near perfect mix.

Oh so smooth and pleasant on the palate like liquid candy at first, then some more sublime smokiness, some big malts, black coffee, and some nuanced bitterness which infuses itself at random points. A slight alcohol heat lingers in the throat, and it goes down almost a true medium, but just a little extra weight pulls it toward the full-bodied end of the spectrum. Creamy and not too filling either, as I could have a couple and move onto an IPA or something and not feel too weighted down.

As always with beers of such high ratings you initially wonder if they're a bit over-hyped. I can honestly say this one is an A+, and is the best Imperial Porter I've every tried. From the first smell to the last taste, what a wonderful experience. Future Best of BA we have here folks.

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Photo of JohnQVegas
4.67/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle into snifter. Bottle date is Wk 4 of Dec. '09.

Pours deepest brown to black, impenetrable to light, with a very thin khaki head. Nice legs, decent lacing, poor retention. I'll be up front, I'm giving this a slightly higher app. score than deserved mainly because (A) app. counts for way too much, and it wouldn't be fair to an otherwise superb beer to lower the overall score, and (B) my wife washed the glass and I'm not sure if soap was involved, so I'm giving the benefit of the doubt.

Nose is just gorgeous - dry, mesquite smokiness wraps around notes of cherrywood, roasted malt, chocolate, and a snappy candy sweetness that balances and works fantastically with the smoke.

Taste is as good as or better than the the nose. Even more complex, if that's possible - the dry smoke is prominent but not dominating, blending seamlessly with a roastiness from the malts; the big sweetness from the nose is there as well, with a candy-coated chocolate-cherry character, and a light, drying hop presence rounds out the experience towards the finish. Finish itself carries notes of dry smoke, sweet roasted malt, and a light hop bitterness. So complex, it's hard to pull all the stuff going on out.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, heading into full territory, big and smoky and dry, with a carbonation that may be just a hair coarse.

As far as drinkability, I never thought a smoked beer would define moreishness for me, but this has come close. Alcohol is pretty much missing from the taste, and everytime I drink this beer, I fins myself wanting a second. Just a fantastic beer, and a fantastic value @ $42 a case, from Yazoo. I'll be heading towards my third case before too long I fear.

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Photo of dustinTN
4.65/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is actually 9%, not 7.5% (as the description says at the time of my writing.) A beer named Sue - dressed in a black label and black cap (just like the Nashville legend in whom's honor this was made.) White "SUE" on the label in the same font as "CASH" on Johnny Cash's last several albums. Ok, to the beer...

Appearance - dark, dark opaque brown, almost black. Very little head which quickly disappears.

Smell - Lots of smoke and malt, very nice

Taste - SMOKE, SMOKE, and more SMOKE! There is no doubt that this is a smoked porter, but it is nicely balanced by some chocolate and maybe a hint of coffee. Lots of complexity. One would never think this was a 9% brew.

Mouthfeel - Not bad. Little carbonation - medium body, solid.

Drinkability - For a 9% beer, this is amazing. Very sessionable. I'll be giving this as a gift to many this holiday season. Very proud of my hometown brewery (and, for the record, I don't love everything Yazoo does, but they nailed this one.)

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.64/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Bottle shared by Curran tonight, thanks man.

This one pours a fairly dark black, with a small head, and a little bit of lacing.

Smells nice and sweetly smoky, like cherrywood smoke, with some chocolate, a bit of piney hops, and a good helping of roasted malt. Can't wait to dig into this one.

This is one of the best smoked beers I've ever had. The cherrywood smoking lends a rich smoke complexity I don't usually find in these sort of beers. The smoke is sweet and woodsy, with a good chocolate and very roasty malt backbone behind it. It's 90 IBUs, and that shows- with a big bitter kick at the end of each sip. This is an absurdly well crafted porter here- everything is done the way it should be. Beer at it's best.

This is medium bodied, with a nice and creamy mouthfeel.

An exemplary example of a dark smoked beer. Really tasty and memorable.

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Photo of coreyfmcdonald
4.62/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

12oz bottle poured into a snifter

A: Almost pitch black with just a hint of brown. One finger of head that quickly fades to a ring around the glass.

S: Very nice. Smoke and peat start off, almost like I'm smelling a scotch without the alcohol burn. In the background, I get a hint of dark cherry. The more I smell, the more dark cherry I get. I get some coffee and a bit of milk chocolate, too. Intriguing, and quite nice.

T: Wow. So complex. Again, lots of peat and dark cherry. It's well supported by some hop bitterness and a healthy portion of dark and milk chocolate. This is unlike any smoked beer I've ever had. I usually love the bacon bombs, and even though this is far from that it's quite amazing.

M: I wouldn't change a thing. Fairly thick and silky smooth with good carb.

O: I am extremely surprised by this beer. I have been passively seeking it out for some time, but I had no idea it'd taste like this, and no idea I'd like a beer so much with this flavor profile. Far beyond expectations. This is not your run of the mill Smoked Porter.

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Photo of mjw06
4.59/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The unique and very distinct cherrywood smell is dominant and gives way to what is going to be the overall experience of this beer. I love smoked beer. Yet this beer managed to present a very distinguished smokiness without overpowering. The smoke taste authentic, like my beer was literally hung over a grill. The 9% abv is nearly unnoticeable. It's a slow sip, and some might find the smokiness unpleasing, but if you like smoked beers, this is a winner.

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Photo of jgagne
4.58/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Lost Abbey Teku Glass

A-pours an opaque black body. Similiar to an imperial stout. Nice light brown head.

S-huge smoke notes come off this beer, with nice undertones of woody earthiness. Very delicious smelling.

T-wow this beer is good. Great smoke flavor with wonderful secondary flavors of vanilla and dark chocalate bitterness.

M-intense body on this beer. Really heavy and creamy for a porter. Medium carbonation.

O- this beer is wonderful. If you love smoked beers this should be at the top of your list for must haves. I do understand though if it might be a hard one to like if you don't crave the smoke flavor, but I do and I think it's phenomenal. Truly a great beer that I can't wait to have again. Easily my favorite yazoo beer.

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Photo of Beertracker
4.57/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Yazoo Sue pours up with a moderate carbonation that creates a modest creamy tannish-brown head that nicely crowns the dark reddish brown-near jet black body. Head retention is quite good for a smoked beer. The initial aroma is a delicate intermingling of campfire smoke and and heavily roasted malt. Secondary aromas include cherry pipe tobacco, black currants, chocolate covered bacon, black coffee, blackstrap molasses and pine needles complimented by the slightest hint of alcoholic strength. Lots of depth & complexity to this one! The flavor starts of with some sugary burnt caramel that carries into a developed roastiness from the chocolate & black malts before being balanced by an assertive earthy & spicy bitterness that carries into the robust, smoky, alcohol laced finish. This medium to medium-full bodied smoked porter is quite creamy, yet a bit oily & slick in the mouthfeel... but besides that it's a serious contender for one of the best smoked porters that I've ever had! I think a few more bottles will be needed to further explore all of the possibilities this one has to offer. It's easy to see why this one won a silver medal at last year's GABF. Yoo-hoo, it's Yazoo!

CHEERS! Beertracker

*Trader's note: Many thanks to CurtisMcArthur for the Überfresh bottle.

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Photo of Onslow
4.57/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks Lou, a want for quite a while and now I get to enjoy a bottle .. . Pours a black cat brown, very low foam, no lacing .. . aroma of smoke, bbq, fire baked dough, burnt sugar, that melted sugar fruit dessert, and tar .. . mouth is like velvet, the 9% is very well integrated .. . the smoke level is nice, but what makes this a winner is how complex it it .. . i don't what to write any more, the other half of this beer is waiting, and i don't have any condoms.. . Voodoo who-do, told ya' Richy! .. Thanks again Lou!!

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Photo of Josiah2729
4.54/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into tumbler

A- Dark, thick. Not much head, less than half finger.

S- Cherry Smoke, Dark Malt

T- Smokey, Dark Porter malts, some cherry, some alcohol

M- Full porter, little carbonation, cola texture

O- Nice smokey porter, nice high gravity beer

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Photo of merlin48
4.52/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I've been wanting to sample Sue for several months. A huge thank you to mntlover for gifting me this one. Pours a deep and dark brown body, opaque to light. Two finger tan head hangs around a few minutes and deposits some patchy lace.

Aroma opens with campfire smoke, followed by roasted coffee beans and dark chocolate. As it warms, there is a note of smoked meats akin to barbecue. Nice.

Mouthfeel is a bit more than medium bodied with a creamy light medium carbonation.

Taste is a wonderful conglomeration of smoked pork, campfire smoke, dark chocolate, and roasted coffee. Earthy hops contribute an ideal bitterness that compliments the assorted dark roasty notes. Smoky aftertaste is longlasting.

Got to give this one a five for overall score. For one thing, it's the best Tennessee brewed beer I've ever tasted, by a longshot. Second, it's just that well done. Reminds me of some of the smoked beers out of Bamberg that I'm fond of. Really a pleasant surprise to see Yazoo put out such a fine brew. This is an all around excellent smoked imperial porter.

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Photo of BlueMoon10
4.52/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had out of a 750ml. bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Chocolate brown in color. Has a two finger creamy brown head upon pouring. Lots of lacing.
S: Roasted malts that leads to some chocolate, caramel, and finishes with some a smoke smell.
T: Smoke flavor, Roasty chocolate, hint of some vanilla.
M: Medium to heavy but very drinkable. Some creaminess to it. Can't taste the alcohol.
A very good, drinkable smoked porter. One of Tennessee's best.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.52/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another Yazoo beer courtesy of photekut (thanks JR). It pours a dark brown-black color, opaque, with a 1 finger dark tan foam. A little bit of lacing, not much.

It smells exactly as I'd hoped, dark roast and sweet malts, a modest dose of smoked malts, a little cocoa maybe excellent. And it only gets better in taste. All of the above, and the smoked flavors are at a perfect level. I've learned to love rauch biers, and so I think I could stand even more in this beer, but really it's perfectly constrained as is. Cherry wood based on the label, and it works very well.

The body is medium-heavy, lightly carbonated, not quite chewy but going in that direction. Absolutely delicious and I wish I had many more.

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Photo of Tilley4
4.52/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I found a few 4 packs of this left in Nashville when I was there last week and snagged a couple... I've been hearing about this offering and I've been excited to try it... Bottled the 3rd week of December so this one is uber fresh...

Poured into my new Chimay goblet (which I received courtesy of Kris at Party Mart-Thanks, Kris!!!).

A super looking porter here... Its 95% black and the other 5% is such a dark brown you'd think it was black... Slow forming head of light mocha appears and quickly fades to a ring... Laces terrific throughout...

The smoky malts bombard the senses immediately and have my mouth watering and my curiousity of how this will taste is going full on... I was expecting a little smokiness here but this is pungent and complex and delicious smelling...the chocolate malts are deep and rich and blend beautifully with the smoke... The bottle says they're smoked with cherry wood and I'm curious as to how that will lend itself to the taste...

The chocolate malts are smooth and rich and then comes the smoke.. And loads of it... And its delicious... Not overwhelming but done beautifully... I can't taste a drop of booze here which is surprising as well considering the 9% ABV here... Dangerous, this one is... Its a sipper, not one to rush or hurry finishes with a hint of bitterness from the hops and then there's this smoky peaty aftertaste that I find absolutely delicious..

I'm not sure if this is going to be a regular in the Yazoo lineup but I think it should be... I thought this was a world class brew... It had everything a great porter has and then some... Its deep and dark and smoky and delicious... Very well done, Linus... A real heavyweight here...

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #45 (Oct 2010):

Cherrywood-smoked malt in the house! Tan lace crowns the black liquid; smoky, burnt malt and a faint currant nose. Smoothness reaches new depths in this ultra-creamy, big-bodied brew. Flavors pour over with suggestions of highly roasted coffee, extremely dark chocolate, smoke charred wood and burnt marshmallows. There is some hoppiness behind the smoke and roasted grain, which tames any sweetness that arises. The alcohol warms well but is very clean. Long, smoky, roasty finish. No need to be subtle here: Yazoo hits all the right targets and balances out the smoke very well. Epic.

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Sue from Yazoo Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 223 ratings.