Emelisse Espresso Stout | Bierbrouwerij Grand-Café Emelisse

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Emelisse Espresso StoutEmelisse Espresso Stout

Brewed by:
Bierbrouwerij Grand-Café Emelisse

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Absumaster on 01-29-2010

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Reviews: 78 | Ratings: 208
Photo of Allpe45
3.61/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.16oz bottle, lot A

Appears black with a short tan head, dissipates quickly, leaves streaks of lacing. Smells like roast malts, hints of cocoa and coffee. Taste is cocoa, coffee, roasted grains. Mouthfeel is smooth, low carbonation, medium bodied. Easy to drink but not impressive.

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Photo of rinhaak
3.82/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.6 oz bottle in a tulip glass.

Pours a dark, syrupy black with very little head. The head does leave a nice lace along the edges of the glass.

Nose is full of chocolate, hints of smoke, and black licorice.

The taste is very rich and dark. Very creamy, milky, and syrupy on the tongue, dark roasted malts are very present in the mouth. While I certainly taste coffee undertones, these are not overpowering. I almost taste a red berry hidden in there as well (raspberry?) After a few sips, the bitterness dies away and it actually starts to get pretty sweet.

It's a nice and complex beer, though I expected the coffee flavors to be more in the foreground than they actually are. Overall, it's a little too rich and syrupy to enjoy having very often.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.15/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Poured jet black with good carbonation leaving a nice tan cap

S: One dimensional. Espresso folks.

T: Roasted malt, coffee, hints of funk and light cocoa

M: Medium bodied with medium carbonation, a subtle sour twinge in the aftertaste.

O: Pretty average across the board., Not one I would recommend or go back to.

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Photo of Keffa
3.28/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Live review.

Bottle poured into my Duvel tulip.

A: Pours a dark brown, small tan head settles into a ring and film. Leaves nice (but small) lacing on the glass that stays.

S: Very deep roast, coffee, toast, wood, ash, chocolate, and smoke. Also has some very faint tart notes, like several of the stouts from Jackie O's.

T: Deep roasted malt, ash and smoke, a very faint chocolate, even more faint woody hop and tartness, and then near the finish it turns into boozy alcohol. Let down here. Coffee isn't nearly what it should be for an espresso stout.

M: Even worse, overly thin body, low carbonation, and slick on the palate make the alcohol stand out.

O: Okay for what it is, but not something I would buy again. Sadly, the regular Emelisse Russian Imperial Stout is fantastic. If you see anything from Emelisse, stick with the Russian Imperial over this.

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Photo of Jparkanzky
4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a stemless wine glass.

Bottle states 9.5% ABV

A) Jet Black, thin mocha head with decent lacing.

S) Some coffee and alcohol aromas, but not over powering.

T) Coffee immediately and all the way through. Very pleasant tasting.

M) Slight carbonation, very little alcohol bite, but very dry and smooth on the palate at the same time.

O) Overall it's a very drinkable, and flavorful coffee stout.

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Photo of rtepiak
3.58/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

not exactly a dutch style beer... American influence, netherlands made but without anything out of the ordinary like many of their other beers. Third wave coffee shops haven't really hit Europe in such a way as the US. Not to pride the US on there coffee as well as beer but the industries have been growing side by side. And in turn influencing each other. Dark lord has intelligencia coffee added to it. There are others all over the country. So right... Back to the review. The pour is as expected and the smell is bitter coffee grinds and coal. The palate is a bit doughy that gets cut by the heavily roasted coffee effect. Coal dry and a very mild grape and plum. A tad one dimensional coffee nature.

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Photo of JamnesCameron
4.23/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter.

Pours a jet black with a light mocha colored head that drops to a wisp of foam and some nice lacing.

Aromas of iced mocha coffee, cocoa, dark roasted coffee, sweet malt. No hop aroma.

Flavor of coffee ice cream and powdered dark cocoa. Burnt, dark roasted malt. Some dark fruit. Good bitterness from roasted grains and hop. No discernable hop flavor. Underlying foreign stout base beer stands out, bitter, roasted. Finish is long, bitter, and roasted.

Mouthfeel is creamy, medium bodied. Mouthcoating hop resins.

Very drinkable. Very well balanced coffee stout.

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Photo of bluejacket74
3.7/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.16 ounce bottle (330 ml), best before 09/2012, Lot A. Thanks to my buddy Denis for picking up this one for me! Served in a snifter, the beer pours dark brown/black with a half inch tan head that didn't stay around for too long. However, there is a lot of lacing left behind. Aroma is a bit weak, it smells like coffee, roasted malt and a little bit of chocolate. It tastes the same as it smells, but luckily the taste is stronger compared to the aroma. There's also a nice lingering bitter coffee finish. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit creamy with low carbonation. Drinkability is decent, it's not hard to drink at all. It's not my favorite coffee beer, but it's certainly worth a try. I'd drink this again.

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Photo of hickmancase
1.62/5  rDev -56.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Bottle from the Bruery Provisions poured into my Ommegang chalice.

A: Not as syrupy looking as I'd expected. As much head as would be anticipated for a 10%. Middle of the road stout looking.

S: Odd coffee. Something's off.

T: Like the smell. Awkward. Not good.

M: Too distracted by the funky flavor to pay much attention to the mouthfeel.

D: How could coffee and beer be so wrong? I love coffee stouts.


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Photo of imaguitargod
2.32/5  rDev -37.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 1.5

Pours to a creamy yet large bubbled, tan head that has some good staying power. The head leaves some beautiful lacing on the side of my glass too. Some malt sweetness up front then the coffee hits like a mac truck. Loads of black coffee flavor intermix with the dark roasted malts. This teeters on being acrid but doesn't fall over the edge. I'm going to have to say the flavors are a bit unbalanced because this tastes more like a cup of cold coffee than it does a stout. It's a big, bold beer, but it's just has too much over the top coffee flavor and that's coming from a man who drinks his coffee black as night and strong as the sun. I could force down a pint, but that's as far as I could go. For the massive price I payed for it ($3.99), I would not recommend it.

~Jonathan Passow

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.2/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #44 (Sep 2010):

Lovely brown cap of head on a deep darkness of a brew; head retention is a stellar show of stickiness. Used coffee bean grounds all the way, almost acrid but the roasted grain evens that out. Boiled coffee grounds give off a strong Cowboy Coffee flavor, very bitter. Roasted grain, dark fruitiness, yeast and some veggie-like hop try and round out the palate, but the burnt used coffee flavor stays strong even in the aftertaste. A bit off kilter--even when the beer warms up a bit, the espresso flavor has got a stranglehold on the taste buds. A notch above average.

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Photo of DoubleSimcoe
3.27/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Emelisse Espresso Stout, bottled version, bought at Whole Foods Bowery NYC, poured into a Sierra snifter.

Appearance: Pours with a glug, very thick. Appearance is like a dead black lagoon- no carbonation, no head, no bubbles, no retention. Nothing but an oily black liquid.

Smell: Some coffee and chocolate, dark sugars. Roasted malts and a bit of booze at the end. A tad of medicinal syrup too, a cloying sweetness that is evident but not unpleasant. Bourbon-y too.

Taste: Very watery. Lacks body. Lots of coffee beans. Chocolate.

Mouthfeel: Very thin and watery. Barely any carbonation and body. Finishes dry, bitter, pungent.

Drinkability: Fine. A bit boozy but not too much. It's just not a pleasant brew due to the lack of carbonation/body/flavor. Not exciting.

(note: had on tap in Madrid, Spain, and liked it very much, way better than the bottle)

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Photo of Mora2000
3.53/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to bu11zeye for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours a medium brown color with a tan head. The aroma is tart cherries with some roasted malt and coffee. The coffee is not as prevalent as I expected it to be, but it is definitely present.

The flavor is much heavier on the coffee. I also get some roasted malt and chocolate as well as some grassy hop notes and some Belgian yeast character. The alcohol is very well hidden. I had no idea the beer was 10 percent ABV. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Very interesting to see a coffee stout brewed with a Belgian twist.

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Photo of comfortablynumb1
4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Want to say thanks to my brother for bringing this one out. Popped this one as a breakfast beer...

Poured from 11.16 fl.oz bottle into a Canada pint glass I picked up when I was visiting B.C...

A - Poures black with dark brown hues and a two finger tan head. Good amount of head retention and lacing...

S - Coffee, chocolate and molasses...

T - Taste pretty much follows the smell. Chocolate, molasses, dark roasted malts, and coffee. Am suprised by how smooth this one is considering the ABV. Very nice...

M - Nice and creamy with only a mild amount of carbonation. Medium/full bodied...

D - Suprised by the low ratings, as I really enjoyed this. Not the best stout I have tasted, but definitely I would recommend to somebody that is a fan of the style. Hope I will get a chance to put back a couple more of these soon...


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Photo of BarrelO
4.12/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.16oz bottle poured into a goblet. 9.5% ABV.

A: Black body. Off-white head leaves a bit of lacing.

S: By far the best part of this beer. Coffee notes are unsurprisingly very strong, but they don't dominate. Rather, they blend in seamlessly with chocolate and caramel from the malt. Absolutely intoxicating.

T: Coffee/espresso is the strongest element. Interestingly, though, roasted notes are more subdued than in the IRS. Balanced by rather substantial malty sweetness. Lingering roasty bitterness.

M: Medium-bodied, good creaminess.

D: A very good coffee stout. Especially good in wintertime.

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Photo of chicagobeerriot
3.82/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Saw this on the menu at the Publican and had to grab it. First time I've seen this in Chicago. Although I love Belgian beers, I've generally been disappointed with stouts that come out of the Benelux countries. They tend to be a bit thin with a yeast profile that doesn't fit my expectations from the style. This Espresso stout is a pleasant exception to the rule.

Pours dark brown with amber at the edge when held to the light. A thin tan head accompanies the pour, but leaves fairly quickly. Not the best looking stout in the world, but it quickly regains ground with your other senses.

The smell shows that coffee lovers will be pleased. It's pure espresso with a bit of mocha and fig in the background and some bready malt forming the backbone.

Mouthfeel is thankfully medium-full with much lighter carbonation than some of the overly-fizzy stouts that I've had from the region.

The taste packs a strong espresso punch. While the rest of the beer is not as formidable as some of its imperial cousins (Founder's Breakfast stout and Peche Mortel), Emelisse Espresso holds its own when it comes to coffee presence, with some milk chocolate and subtle dried fruit to boot. It is well worth seeking out (if you can, try to find it fresh so you can get the most from the coffee beans).

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.94/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the bottle at the Bilbo Baggins Stilwater/12% Imports dinner on Friday November 12, 2010. Served in a wine glass.

Pours a very, very dark brown color. Appears black until held up to the light. No head at all, though there are some very slight legs. The nose is straight espresso with a bit of light roast.

The taste is roast and espresso with some dark chocolate and cocoa powder as well. There is some slight cream and a touch of vanilla. Medium body with low carbonation and a nice roasted character. Pretty tasty and a nice all around beer.

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Photo of richmof
3.82/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a deep midnight black into my Duvel tulip. No head at first but then a two finger head magically appeared, Guinness-style. Off-white, gray, more frothy than creamy but not bad. Didn't stick around too long though (limited retention), although some ok lacing.

On the nose I get dark fruits and molasses, as well as the deep roasted malt. The palate opens up with a molasses/treacle undertone - without ever being that sweet. There is some nice spice: clove, cardamon and aniseed? Sure I get the coffee but much less pronounced than the name would suggest.

Despite the intense rich flavours, this is a nice dry stout - not at all cloying. There is a pleasant effervescence and it is eminently drinkable given the ABV.

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Photo of farrago
3.95/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big, billowing head of over two fingers, looks kinda like the top of a chocolate milkshake, all whipped up forth, very dark brown, about average grip to the lacing. Full-on black liquid, as opaque as opaque gets. In the nose you actually receive more caramel, toffee and warm dark chocolate before the dark roast coffee burst, this more sweet than bitter, not overly toasty with buttermilk, white bread dough, softest whisper of orange peel, no flowers or grassy accents, the hops likely stiffen nostril presence over providing distinct scents. Medium-bodied, possesses the sort of dryness which shaves off weight rather than sap flavor intensity. The roast again is dark but not vicious or deep, easily admits of a creamy texture without much bitterness. As much milk as dark chocolate, caramel and coconut shavings a minor touch. Pecan to chestnut notes, dried orange peel. Nothing remarkable about the carbonation, even if this is technically a remark. Oats and wheat bread crust, hops play it lowkey. Plenty of coffee flavor through the finish, good length, if you are looking for a blockbuster here you will be disappointed.

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Photo of wl0307
4.32/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased at the BSF bar, GBBF 2010, this bottle-conditioned ale comes in a short, slim brown 300ml bottle; BB 06/2011, served cool in a Gulden Draak's tulip-shaped sniffer. NOTE: the espresso used in the brew contains 90% Arabica and 10% Robusta coffee beans - it's interesting that they specify this fact on the label...?! Are there going to be another version with 100% Arabica, another with 50-50 Arabica-Robusta and yet another with 100% instant coffee?

A: pours a nearly black colour with mid-sized yeast sediments floating; not very fizzy, the initially frothy dark beige froth settles very quickly to rimmed bubbles.
S: definitely coffee-ish, full of sweetened cold coffee's sourness and aromatic bitterness from roasted malts, real espresso & a touch of burned-wood ash, in a sense smoother & deeper than Dark Star's Espresso Stout (the first real coffee ale that I ever tasted); given a very good swirl, from beneath the black nectar emerges notes of Fuggles' earthy hops, melting black sugar, lightly sour dark stone-fruits, semi-sour yeasty notes, bitter-sweet nut-puree and coffee cream. Delicious on the nose, like a coffee-jelly, only with a faint touch of alc.
T: the flow of rich, oily, mildly-alcoholic, un-sweet coffee liquor, burned sticky coffee-flavoured toffee and roasted barley is balanced by a burned-woody or extremely aromatic roasty and slightly dry-ish hoppy middle that linger so well into the finish, where a lightly sour-bitter edge of cold espresso rules in terms of burned wood-ash & roast-nutty aroma as well as coffee-tannic bitterness. In a remote corner, an earthy+spicy touch of hops also manifests itself discreetly, but overall the finish is not as boldly bitter & hoppy as an American IPA, but more like a more traditional British version in that the chewy bitterness of hops, bitter-sweetness of roast malts, and sourness of fruitiness are roughly balanced 2-4-4.
M&D: full-bodied, smooth on the mouthfeel and never flat-ish or dull, this espresso stout is so very delicious, coffee-centric and delicately balanced, that I think I could've happily had a larger serving (500ml?), sipped slowly over a quality BBC3 live concert programme on a Sunday night - just like tonight...

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Photo of Proteus93
3.74/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a very deep brown, ending up stark black in the glass. The head struggled to form, even with a rather assertive pour, and fell away to essentially nothing quite fast. Some strings of lace left behind, but not among the better pours I've seen.

S + T: Scent and flavour are almost identical... a roasted malt profile paired with a rather straight forward espresso. I don't pick up on much sweetness from it. Just an 'iced coffee' kind of quality, which is nice. Not much of the bitter chocolate that typically come with the stouts, at least compared to many others, but I honestly don't find myself missing it all that much. It performs well with just the coffee.

M + D: Carbonation is about right, but body is maybe a touch thin. Such a brew could be astonishing with a richer, creamier body, but it gets by without taking too much from the experience. Alcohol is remarkably well hidden considering the ABV, so one to exercise a little restraint with when drinking... or not, I suppose! Worth the try... a decent brew.

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Photo of BeerCoffeeWater
4.08/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours like good imperial stout should. Smells a bit like espresso, not overwhelming though, sweet espresso if i had to define it.

I love the taste of this beer, it's like a KBS without the bourbon. (nothing like the breakfast stout) It's not overwhelmingly big, just a nice coffee imperial stout. I really feel like they hit the style (espresso stout) right on. Mouthfeel is creamy, and it's not too boozy tasting at all. I'm really enjoying this beer as an espresso stout lover. Not sure why the negative press I got from friends on it.

Note: drank at near room temperature, if that makes any difference.

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Photo of Beerenauslese
4.5/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This pours a dark brown with an ample head that dissipates to a thin layer of foam, leaving trace lacing on the glass.

Aromas of malt, dark chocolate, coffee.

Taste follows the nose, with dark malt, chocolate, hops, some dark fruit, and strong, smooth espresso taste.

Body is medium with a light mouthfeel, not quite enough carbonation to make it creamy.

This is a a nice tasting espresso stout, and I am enjoying the strong espresso flavor. Alcohol is subdued by the strong flavors.

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Photo of capra12
3.21/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed solo at home served out of an East End Pint glass.

Appearance: pours jet black with 1 1/2 finger of light brown and caramel frothy head leaving a spotty lacing.

Smell: a ton of iced black coffee.

Taste: Opens with mild roasted grains, I get a coffee bitter in the middle with a dark and almost sour malt profile. There is an initial black coffee finish that mellows as I finish this pint.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied with medium carbonation, a subtle sour twinge in the aftertaste.

Drinkability: this is a one an done for me, I recommend this to those seeking a brew with a strong coffee and espresso presence and unique malt backbone.

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Photo of Jeffo
2.71/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 1.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Got this at Bert's Bierhuis in Utrecht.

From a bottle into a snifter.

Note: More of an Imperial Stout than an Export/Foreign stout, so I reviewed it as such.

APPEARANCE: Pours out brown and forms a small beige head that quickly vanishes down to a ring. Not a thick pour at all; relatively thin and light looking for the style and ABV. Dark brown body and minimal carbonation evident. A faint ring remains until the end but leaves no lacing down the glass. Thinner body than expected; a little disappointing for the style.

SMELL: Some roasted malts, a bit of smoke, as well as some roasted coffee beans. Hints of vanilla in there as well. A decently enticing nose that isn't overpowered by the espresso notes.

TASTE: Roasted malts, some caramel sweetness, and a good dose of bitter black coffee. Roasted black coffee beans are the most prevalent here, with some booze in the background. Bold and long lasting aftertaste is plenty roasted with lots of bitter black coffee and espresso notes. This is definitely a coffee stout, but it's a little too one dimensional.

PALATE: Medium body and little light on the palate for an imperial stout. Creamy smooth on the palate, goes down fine with a little scratch at the end and finishes slightly mouth-coating. A little too light for the style.

OVERALL: Definitely a coffee stout. The taste profile on this one was quite one dimensional, but not enough to make it off-putting. On the other hand, it certainly was one dimensional enough to make it a little mundane. Where this one really failed was in its thin and lighter pour, as well as the lack of a real heavyweight body to go with the big flavour and ABV. A disappointing effort from what is otherwise a solid brewery. Try either their regular Imperial Stout or their double for a better example of what Emelisse has to offer.

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Emelisse Espresso Stout from Bierbrouwerij Grand-Café Emelisse
3.7 out of 5 based on 208 ratings.
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