Quilter's Irish Death | Iron Horse Brewery

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85
very good
99 Reviews
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Quilter's Irish DeathQuilter's Irish Death
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Iron Horse Brewery
Washington, United States | website

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by RedDiamond on 09-18-2007

BEER STATS
Reviews:
99
Ratings:
330
Avg:
3.75
pDev:
26.67%
 
 
Wants:
25
Gots:
82
For Trade:
0
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Reviews: 99 | Ratings: 330
Photo of vladdswrath
3.78/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a deep, deep brown with a light tan head as dense as a memory foam mattress. Scent is roasted malt and bready alcohol. Taste is sweet (almost too sweet), rich chocolate and licorice with a hint of vanilla lurking and just a touch of bitterness to remind you that this is actually a beer you're drinking and not a Yoo-hoo!. Mouth feel is incredible, smooth and creamy with just a touch of alcohol burn.

 408 characters

Photo of hreb
3.79/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle served in a tall glass. Beer pours black, tinged with brown around the edges, with a small chestnut head. Aroma is of molasses and betrays a bit of the 7.6% ABV printed on the label.

For some reason I assumed this was a (double) Irish Stout based on the label and the color of the brew. But no, it's a Strong Ale. And knowing that it's intended to be a strong ale makes me appreciate the flavor significantly more. The flavor is a on the malty side, with commensurate alpha hops, but not at all roasty or nutty or creamy. Yes, the ethanol comes through on the palate, but other than that, the balance is pretty reasonable. Medium caramel barley character suggests to me Imperial Red Ale. Subtler flavors of licorice, possibly even figs or dates.

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Photo of brentk56
3.79/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Pours a muddy dark brown with a foamy tan head that leaves strands of lacing with every sip

Smell: Toffee and cherry cola (or Dr. Pepper, perhaps)

Taste: Toffee with a cherry cola character building in the middle; hints of fig and date, but none too prominent and, perhaps a dusting of cocoa powder; finishes rather sweet, with a cola undertone in the aftertaste

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Interesting to read the reviews of this beer as various raters try to wrap their brains around this beer; moving it to a Strong Ale was a good idea as clearly it is not a beer that lands in stout territory; I am not a big fan of sweet beers but I found this rather enjoyable

Thanks, kemoarps, for the opportunity

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Photo of Murrhey
3.8/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from starndard pressure-cap bomber to pint glass in high elevation Libby, Mont. Reviewed live.

A- Half-finger mocha head with long retention. Thin, opaque, mocha lacing. Color of reddish-clay, very hazy, only clarity comes from the edges.

S- Chocolate fudge, roasted malts, some brandy.

T- Strange flavors. Alcohol comes much more into play here, tastes like dark chocolate liqueur or a white Russian almost. Some fruity hoppiness (surprisingly) at the end of the drink as well. How peculiar. After the initial dark, roasted flavors, finishes very sweetly. Quite nice.

M- Smoooth. Finishes rather dry and tight.

O- Surprising beer. I liked it. It isn't drop-dead wonderful, but a nice roasty sort of ale.

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Photo of PorterLocoBro
3.8/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I had Irish Death on-tap at Applebee's in Bellevue Washington in a standard pint glass, by itself and without food. The overall appearance, although generally unimpressive, consists of a thick, rough, light brown, melted marshmallow-like head with an extremely dark-brown body. The smell, besides the taste, is the second best aspect, it is fairly complex with very little influence of hops, holding aromatic hints of bitter chocolate, almonds, brown sugar, and sweetened coffee.

The taste is outstanding; this is the best sweet, dark American ale I've ever had. Irish Death takes the concept of a dessert beer to new levels. Although not complex or hoppy, it is absolutely delicious. The taste is mostly that of chocolate, primarily sweet and smoky, barely bitter, feels heavy, thick; anything but watery, fairly sour and shockingly smooth for being 7.8% ABV.

Between the rich taste and the consistency of its flavor and aroma, Irish Death is a personal favorite of mine. However, folks who prefer more bitter American ale's may want to put this sweeter Northwestern brew on the bottom of their lists.

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Photo of homebrew311
3.82/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle poured into Russian River -tion glass. Appearance is a deep chestnut brown with auburn highlights. A thin layer of head sticks around to form a collar. Not much in the way of lacing. The nose features some sweeter notes of vanilla and cherry along with notes of caramel and toffee. Not getting anything in the way of hops. The taste is pretty sweet, just as the nose suggests, with lots of vanilla and caramel paired with dark fruits. The sweetness is strong but never becomes cloying. The mouthfeel features mellow carbonation with a moderate to heavy body. Overall, this is a malty treat that is balanced well and is deceptively strong.

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Photo of beardsley_firkins
3.87/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured out of a bomber into a large german stein so I could fit all of it at once ( *pro tip* keeping to "one" drink is a lot easier this way).
Looks like a red-brown ale; tobacco colored with reddish tints around the edges where light can pass through. Almost no head except for a bit around the edges; slight bubbles around edges as well.
Smells a lot like toffee - sweetness & roasty malts.
Tastes actually similar to Wells' Sticky Toffee Pudding Ale, if you've had that. Fairly sweet with a little metallic backbone (like an English porter) & some caramel, but not much else. Alcohol is well-hidden.
Mouthfeel is pretty thin and slightly biting on the finish. Kind of an aftertaste of brown sugar.
Overall, I like this beer. It's sweeter, but easy to drink and light-bodied. Not sure if I could have more than one.

 823 characters

Photo of aquazr1
3.89/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Talk about an interesting beer. Pours like a porter, dark with a light body. Tastes is kinda sweet and malty with a nice balance from the hops. Not sure where it fits in but that doesn't matter if you just want a good beer.

 223 characters

Photo of Axnjxn
3.9/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

22oz bomber into a teku glass. 7/18/13 bottling date

pours a very dark brown with reddish hues. Smell is of caramel, toffee and malts and is quite strong. the taste is also of caramel and toffee as well as some bready notes. very malty as well. reminiscent of arrogant bastard but without the hops. body is a tad light, id like it to be fuller. light carbonation as well.

overall a pretty good ale here, id drink another but i would always prefer arrogant bastard to this, so i'm not sure if i'd ever choose it willingly.

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Photo of beertunes
3.9/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This pint raised in memory of Jim Quilter (who developed this beer and whose name is on it) who passed away yesterday (6/30/09) at age 52. Cheers Jim!

Served in pint glass. Poured very dark, but not quite black, with just over an inch of deep tan head that dissipated quickly, leaving moderate lacing.

A rich roasted aroma is the upfront scent, with an unexpected spicieness noticed on the finish. The flavors coat the tongue nicely, the roasted malt goodness dominating with that little spice taste and a little hop tang on the end.

The body on this beer is outstanding, being full without being heavy. The drinkability is hampered only by the strength of this, truly, stout.

A beer worth seeking out. A job well done Jim.

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Photo of djbreezy
3.9/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap in a 12 oz glass at By the Bottle in Vancouver, WA.

appearance - dark with some transparency, some lacing

smell - candy and sugar, malts

taste - very sweet, candy and sugar notes mixed with a malty backbone

mouthfeel - a bit on the creamy side, smooth but oily

overall - i really dig what they've done with this...it doesn't really match a set style but that's just fine. it's an interesting beer and worth a try. fatigues after too much but worth a glass!

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Photo of loren01
3.92/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark brown color, whitish brown head, slight lace down the glass.
S: Great chocolate, molasses sweet scent.
T: Real sweet and malty. Slightly fruity taste in there as well. Also has a fait piney hop aftertaste.
M: The label on this beer says its a smooth dark ale...they arent lying about how smooth this beer is..very nice!
D: I'm gonna have to go ahead and disagree with the style on this one...this is more like a double Irish red or something. This is a great beer...was a little bit hesitant to get it cause I don't really like imperial stouts..its very far from that, a very tasty brew.

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Photo of Bfarr
3.93/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A very interesting deep dark brown with a fairly thick umber head. A nice chocolate malty aroma.
The high carbonation on this threw me for a loop. It has a deep and smooth chocolate and caramel malt body but it doesn't cling like an imperial stout. Instead it finishes quickly and smoothly as an ale would. Even with just a hint of Irish cream.

This one is very intersting. It is described on the bottle as a dark ale and I would be inclined to agree. I'll not say I'm a big fan of the feel on this one but the taste and drinkability are high. It's so easy drinking it almost seems wrong to be associated with death. If only death would go down this easy!

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Photo of julian
3.93/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

<added pic>

A: pour is slightly syrupy, extremely dark brown in color. Looks to have dark walnut/garnet hues on the edges where the light can barely pass. thick creamy light tan head that really takes it's time rising to the surface. Leaves a wet bubbly lacing all the way around.

S: initial smell is lightly alcoholic, dark fruit, sweet malts. This almost smells like a belgian dark ale.

T: very smoooth and creamy. below average carbonation (which works well for this style). flavor is sweet, fruity. hints of diacetyl and slightly bitter roasty flavor

M: excellent. low carbonation, smooth and rolls off the tongue with ease.

D: At 7.8% and given the above properties of this beer, this is very drinkable, if not a bit too sweet.

Overall impressions: Very good, with a bonus of being locally brewed! Surprisingly, this is an Imperial Sweet Stout according to Iron Horse...wow just wow...this is a great style if that's the case. It tasted like a nut brown ale to me.

 981 characters

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.94/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Seattle Beer Week pint glass. Pours a very dark mahogany brown with very little light transmission and a half finger light brown head with good retention and lacing. Nice aroma of toasted malt, chocolate, hints of coffee and vanilla. Flavor starts similar to the aroma, with toasted malt, chocolate and nuts with a lighter fruit element quickly developing to finish with dark malt, light cherry and berry juice, chocolate and a light tartness in the finish. Medium bodied with bright carbonation. A beefed up brown ale with an interesting flavor progression from almost a nut brown into a lighter slightly tart brown. The ABV is well covered, probably explaining the demise of the quilter. Interesting and I'm long overdue reviewing this local classic.

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Photo of SurlyDuff
3.97/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this ontap at the OBF. Super long line, got a whole pint for my wait. It was damn good, but on a hot summer day a sweet stout may not have been the best choice...

Black at first glance, but upon holding it up to the blazing sun a reddish brown.

Sweet chocolate in the aroma. Some lactose and brown sugar/molassas in there.

Taste is big and rich. Hello? Hops? Where are you? Some rich overripe fruit, and bam, lots of chocolate and sugary goodness. Some alcohol, no roasty coffee, just rich milky sweet chocolate. Like I said, a good beer, but for an outdoor summer brewfest...meh.

 589 characters

Photo of NWer
3.98/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Generous pour into my brandy snifter yields darkness and an average head for a bold ABV beer. Settles down to nothing. No lace. No bubbles. Nothing.
Lots of discussion as to style. I see it as a Scotch Ale. Suits me.
Sweetness, chocolate, bold notes.
A very slight cloyness made me drop the score a little on the mouthfeel.
A very enjoyable beer just slightly off to keep it from being rated higher.

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Photo of lwillitz
3.98/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22-oz bottle into Samuel Smith "Tulip" pint glass

A - cloudy dark brown body under a finger of medium tan bubbles, beautiful cascading bubbles

S - caramel sweetness, roasty malt, dark fruits, alcohol

T - roast malts predominate, dark fruits, hint of vanilla, almost a wooden flavor, alcohol, semisweet finish with an aftertaste of alcohol; alcohol hides pretty well until the finish

M - thick, chewy, smooth full body; meduim carbonation; alcohol warmth, especially in the finish

O - This one's great if you're looking for a dark malty ale on the sweeter side.

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Photo of RenzoD
4/5  rDev +6.7%

Along with Mac and Jacks African Amber ale and Georgetown's Manny's Pale ale, this is probably one of Washingtons staples of craft-beer. You walk into a joint and ask for an Irish Death and everyone will know exactly what you are talking about. There's a reason for this; It is a fantastic ale. It is a beautiful beer. Inviting, dark appearance, but on the lighter end of medium body, goes in and down super smooth and has an excellent taste of nut, caramel, malts and balanced well with comforting hop flavor. Though maybe not an out-of-this-world, knock-you-off-your-feet beer in the vein of strong ales, nevertheless it is an always reliable, always enjoyable brew.

 668 characters

Photo of jwc215
4/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle:

Pours very dark brown. A thin, tan, lasting head leaves trailing lace.

The smell is of caramel/toffee, chocolate, some peat.

The taste is of chocolate, anise/licorice, caramel/toffee. Dark fruit peaks through as it progresses. A hint of peat and some earthy hops balances it, while leaving it pleasantly sweetness.

It has a smooth, medium body.

An interesting, unique, enjoyable dark brew. Pretty complex. As the brewery claims, doesn't fit neatly into a traditional style (so the broad "American Strong Ale" fits it well enough. A very nice, different, sweet-leaning dark brew.

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Photo of Superjimbob
4/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is a regular in my fridge. Very nice dark ale. You wouldn't know it's strength as it's a very subtle and tasty beer.
A six pack lasts me a while as it's not a beer I would drink a lot of, just a couple then move onto another brew.

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Photo of Brenden
4.02/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Irish Death is almost black but not quite, though even at the edges light has trouble sneaking in. A light-medium brown head reaches a finger in height and shows some resilience, though it does fade off. Lacing is above average, going spotty for the most part.
This isn't exceedingly complex, but it isn't simple either. A sturdy malts base with only enough hops for balance make for a brew on the sweeter end, but it's by no means too sweet. There's a bit of caramel and vanilla and a touch of something like candy sugars. A gently peppery bite is one way to add character and complexity. There's also a strong breadiness, giving the impression of something like fruitcake, as there is a fruity element, particularly as it warms. It's not so much dark fruits as berries. There's even a touch of peat detectable in the background. Alcohol is well-masked, peeking out in the finish and more so as it sits. All in all, it works together nicely.
The body is medium, and this beer is rich on the tongue and velvety smooth. There's just a very light crisp nip, as smoothness seems to be the intent, but smooth it absolutely is and makes for very nice drinking.

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Photo of Docer
4.02/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: (3.5)
- Pours a dark murky coffee brown.. can't see through it. Minimal light tan to off-white head.. maybe half a finger if lucky. Settles to a nice sized ring of lace making goodness. Light solid dusting on top.

Smell: (4.0)
- Pleasant sweet malt aromas. Quite unique. Light cocoa, grainy husky red ale-like quality. Touch of smoked wood, smoked and/or roasted grain. Slightly grassy and herbal.

Taste: (4.0)
- Sweet cocoa, biscuity, bready dark malt. Smoked roasty flavor. Very herbal and grassy hop. Pretty darn good. Bitterness shines towards the finish. A nice sweet aftershock of sorts hits the palate after the swallow as well. Perhaps a touch of ginger and molasses.

Mouth Feel: (4.5)
- Devilishly smooth. This is a perfectly carbonated, medium bodied brew with a silky smooth and creamy texture. Very high marks on this for the feel. Bitterness leads to some slight drying, and a chewy quality.

Overall: (4.0)
- This is a great brew. If you are looking for a perfectly drinkable creamy smooth dark ale.. this is it. This would be gold on nitro I am guessing.

 1,087 characters

Photo of scuzfly
4.1/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Really good stout that can be hard to find outside the State. I've been told they have a chocolate by the wife, MIL, and SIL that all swear it was the greatest beer they've drank.

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Photo of sensorglitch
4.18/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this in a local establishment from tap.

Served in a pint glass

Held a nice head, good color, not too pale, deep color.

The flavor was rich, and had a nice taste. The texture was nice, not too thin, had a richness to it, like you would expect from a good stout. The taste rolled nicely on the tongue.

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Quilter's Irish Death from Iron Horse Brewery
3.75 out of 5 based on 330 ratings.
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