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Saranac Imperial Stout - Matt Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Saranac Imperial StoutSaranac Imperial Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

191 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 191
Reviews: 151
rAvg: 3.89
pDev: 13.37%
Wants: 20
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: AlHam on 10-22-2007)
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Ratings: 191 | Reviews: 151 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Minkybut
Minkybut

Virginia

3.13/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I poured this beer into ny tumbler at 50 degrees. The beer was black as tar and I thought yummy. It was not even though the head was a nice brown color and pretty. It fell about halfway thhrough. Coffee to toffee taste was good but the aftertaste was like mtallic or something. Harsh aftertaste and to much alcohol burn. lacing was decent but overall I thought the beer was flayt and not very good. Not going to buy again.

Serving type: bottle

11-23-2007 00:39:11 | More by Minkybut
Photo of Kendo
Kendo

New York

4.05/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on October 2, 2007. Consumed on November 11, 2007.

A: Poured into a Spirit Haus pint glass. Body is dark brown/black with a chocolatey-brown big-bubbled but small (half-finger) head. Left decent lacing behind.

S: Roasted coffee mixed with sweet milk chocolate, and a waft of ethanol. I wrote "smells good."

T: Coffee-type flavors are most dominant: slightly burnt charcoal, roasted barley and coffee bitterness at the end of the sip, lingering well into the aftertaste. I think there's a good amount of hops in this beer balancing the malt. There's also a hint of dark chocolate and alcohol heat is noticed at the end of the sip.

M: Carbonation is lively -- perhaps a tad bit too much so. Body weight is medium, lighter than expected from appearances and the nose.

D: Good, especially if you're a coffee fan.

Notes: Paired well with a Nestle Dark Chocolate Truffle candy bar (50% cacao). I thought at times this was porter-like because of the presence of burnt charcoal. I'm interested in seeing how this ages; it seems a tad bit raw right now and may soften and become more chocolatey with some time in the cellar. Good buzz from one bottle.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2007 20:02:29 | More by Kendo
Photo of BeerSox
BeerSox

Virginia

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

12oz bottle into snifter

Perfectly black with a tin light brown head. The size of the snifter (8oz) doesn't allow a large head to build, though this is still somewhat thin.

Deep bitter malt aromas with a little bit of hoppiness in the background. A little bit of chocolate is found in the middle.

Plenty of burnt grain flavor to satisfy any fan of malty beers. Some bitter hops come in toward the end with almost a fruity taste. Full bodied with good carbonation. The finish is lingering bitter malts.

Not a bad "American Stout", although one could argue that this one is an Imperial Stout, or at least an American Double Stout. It's a little too malty, hoppy, and the %ABV is beyond the normal AS territory. Maybe it's a little below a RIS. Either way, it's an enjoyable stout. Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2007 02:22:26 | More by BeerSox
Photo of WesWes
WesWes

New York

4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a deep, dark black color with a thick frothy brown head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a rich and warm malt scent that boasts of chocolate, patent, and roasted malts. It dry and roasted smelling with a decent hop presence and a bit of chocolate malt sweetness. The taste is good. It has a really smooth, malty flavor that's rich in pale and black malts. It goes down sweet and finishes dry and warm with loads of coffee like patent malt flavor. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is probably the best beer Saranac has ever made. It's not a cheap effort to capture the style. It's bold and flavorful; a damn fine imperial stout. Nice work guys!

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2007 00:40:43 | More by WesWes
Photo of MaltyGoodness
MaltyGoodness

Pennsylvania

3.43/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz. bottle

Pours an oil black with a dark cocoa head that thins. Decent lacing on the glass.

Aroma is sweet with roasted malt and burnt coffee smells. A light hint of cocoa and some herbal hops are also present. Boozy as it warms.

Sweet upfront, plenty of roasted malt and burnt coffee flavors. A big wave of IBUs set in with an herbal hop flavor to boot. Finishes sweet with a lingering bitterness. Becomes boozy as it warms.

Thick, stciky body. Solid carbonation.

A pretty big beer from Saranac, and it falls a little short for me. The rich body and sweet taste hinder the drinkability as does the ABV. Overall, a decent sipper and a decent choice for the price.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2007 04:32:16 | More by MaltyGoodness
Photo of caminiti
caminiti

New York

4.33/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Once again, Saranac has hit it right on with the second offering in the High Peaks series. Following one of the best IPAs, especially for the price, the Imperial Stout is again an outstanding offering.
Pours rich, with a slightly orange head, and an aroma of coffee and chocolate, as advertised, with a hint of hops that mirrors the taste, a chocolate stout with a hops aftertaste, a nice combo.
This is an exceptional offering, and Im sure that it will be even more impressive with age, and heres to looking forward to what Saranac comes out with next in this series.

Serving type: bottle

11-16-2007 23:53:44 | More by caminiti
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

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

To me this is easily the best offering from Saranac my hat off to them for making this.Poured into a standard pint glass an opaque black no light showing through at all a 1/2 finger deep mocha colored head atop.Heavily roasted aromas with some rum sweetness and bitter chocolate some leafy hop is there as well wich is nice to find in an imperial stout.Complex would be a word I would use for this beer it has a true ;eafy/herbal hop presence to go along with big roasted and vanilla tinged rum qualites the alcohol as well as the leafy hop flavors become more pronounced as the beer warms.Wow a really nice impy stout to be had a great night capper and I love the hop profile!

Serving type: bottle

11-15-2007 12:34:45 | More by oberon
Photo of smcolw
smcolw

Massachusetts

4.38/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Impressive, lasting beige head that leaves a generous amount of lace. Too dark to allow light to penetrate--near black.

Surprising hop aromas--more bitterness than chocolatey smell.

Potent flavors of dark chocolate and strong hoppiness. Powerful mocha tastes. Near perfect body.

This is a very special beer. Delicious in every way.

Serving type: bottle

11-11-2007 23:49:21 | More by smcolw
Photo of BBM
BBM

New York

4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured jet black into a flute glass, with a chunky brown head and sticky sweet lacing. The aroma was citrus hops, floral and earthy, with a bit of bitter chocolate. Very nice in both categories.

The flavor kind of surprised me, since I wasn't expecting such an influx of hop character in such a rich stout. There is a slight chocolate/coffee flavor up front, which is quickly overtaken by the noticeable hop presence. It was on the edge of being distracting, but thankfully it never got quite that far. As the beer warmed the flavors seemed to settle together better, creating a more complex experience. There is a slight alcohol warmth in the finish.

Overall this is probably the best Saranac brew I've had, and would recommend it to anyone looking for a nice hoppy stout. Those looking for a more classic RIS may want to look elsewhere though.

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2007 00:13:29 | More by BBM
Photo of Jp7010
Jp7010

Maryland

4.28/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Made a beer trade with a friend recently, whow as kind enough to throw in a bottle of this for free.

Poured thick, dark black into a nonic, with a half inch of milk chocolate head. I took a sniff and was greeted with a hefty aroma of rich roasted malts and chocolate. A slight hop aroma was also present. The brew itself tasted just like it smelled. Lots of roasted malts, with a chocolate undertone. There was a surprisingly strong hop bite at the end. It felt thick and heavy in my mouth, but still went down smooth. Perhaps a bit too smooth. Much like Saranac's Imperial IPA, when drinking this one, you have to keep in mind that it's at 9%, and will hurt if you try to turn it to a session beer. The High Peaks series has another hit, and I'm interested to see what the next one will be.

Serving type: bottle

11-08-2007 18:46:38 | More by Jp7010
Photo of aerozeppl
aerozeppl

New York

4.4/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Nice jet black beer. Minimal toffee colored head which dissipates quickly.

S: Roasted coffee. Chocolate and some malt. Sine bu=nice earthy hop tones in the background.

T: Very well done. Nothing like getting a local brewery that gets something very right. Chocolate and malt dominate this one. Thee are some notes of hops at the end. No hint of the 9% which I shall pay for later.

M: Nice and rich. Creamy overall full bodies beer. Carbonation compliments the style.

D: Really good beer. Much better than their imperial IPA. At the price $7.99 for a six pack this is a tempting session beer but do not do it.. That 9% will crawl all over you. For the % however this is a very drinkable beer.

12-30-08 Update: Time has treated this beer extremely well. Everything just really mellowed out. Stellar.

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2007 22:46:07 | More by aerozeppl
Photo of drseamus
drseamus

New York

4.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Another beer in my continuing Imperial Stout kick. This one, just like many others, pours jet black with a thick mocha head. The head on this one fell slightly quicker than some others, but still looks great and never disappeared completely. The aroma is somewhat sweet with loads of roasted malt and coffee and some subtle caramel. The taste is very sweet caramelly and roasty, perhaps a bit too sweet for my taste but still damn good. I also don't taste any chocolate which is a bit of a let down. The mouthfeel is good and thick just like it should be. Over the past couple years Saranac had been a bit of a let down, but the new High Peak series are great beers that are bringing Saranac back to their A-game.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2007 04:19:50 | More by drseamus
Photo of jaxon53
jaxon53

Connecticut

3.53/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served at about cellar temperature, in a pint glass, from a twelve ounce brown bottle. Poured a thick pitch black that no light could pass through. A somewhat vigorous pour yielded about a finger and a half of dense coffee brown head. Head faded rather quickly, but left behind some thick lace. A somewhat tame nose presented aromas of rich coffee, a touch of cocoa, and a little bit of wood. The smell had a bit of smoke in it as well. The taste was pretty interesting. Some coffee and chocolate stood out up front, with some nice hop and malt notes, with a bit of charred wood and some fruit. Finishes a bit bitter with a little booze. A bit too carbonated in my opinion. Mouthfeel seemed a bit thin and a little chalky. Decent drinkability. Not a bad beer at all, just a little dissapointing.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2007 17:34:08 | More by jaxon53
Photo of BeerTruth
BeerTruth

Connecticut

4.08/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a nonic.

Pours an onyx black with a huge three finger tan head that takes a while to die down. Stickiness remains on the sides all over the place, wow...go Saranac! First whiff of this one, big citrus hops which are then taken over by the chocolate and coffee malt odors. Other than Three Floyds Black Sun, this is by far the hoppiest smelling stout I've ever encountered, I love it. Taste starts off with a quick citrus bite but is soon taken over by a whole bunch of different malts and barley. Black chocolate, french roast coffee, espresso, roasted barley, and some wood flavors. A bit of alcohol is in the aftertaste, but it's not overpowering. This is by far the most flavorful Saranac brew to date. Mouthfeel is a bit rough and could be a bit smoother, but it's still damn impressive. Saranac does an amazing job hiding the 9% abv., I'm still blown away by this beer from Saranac. Easily the best beer that they offer. I can't wait for the third beer in the High Peaks Series. Keep up the good work!

Serving type: bottle

10-30-2007 01:22:44 | More by BeerTruth
Photo of riversider76
riversider76

New York

4.22/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black with a thin tan head. Good retention,and lacing. Smell is of roasted malts, and sweet dark chocolate. Body is thick,and rich with some carbionation. Taste is of roasted semi sweet dark chocolate. Alchol is there,but does not dominate. Very well done.

Serving type: bottle

10-28-2007 00:42:01 | More by riversider76
Photo of AlHam
AlHam

New Jersey

4.8/5  rDev +23.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This new release from Saranac may have just redefined the American stout.

Pours dark, black, and rich with an average sized but creamy head.

Smells of toasted chocolate and caramel malts.

Tastes rich and full. The chocolate and caramel malts are apparent, backed by a gentler yet still strong in its own right hops flavor.

The mouthfeel makes this beer. It's incredible, and really sets it apart from other outstanding stouts like Mackeson XXX. The mouthfeel incredibly rich, creamy, and full bodied. MUCH thicker than a Guinness.

A very drinkable beer, but only in limited quantities. It's thick and heavy, and at 9% ABV it packs a punch.

An exceptional beer. Makes an incredible black & tan when layered over the Imperial IPA.

Serving type: on-tap

10-22-2007 05:40:48 | More by AlHam
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Saranac Imperial Stout from Matt Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 191 ratings.