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Frost Monster | Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
88
very good
58 Reviews
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Frost MonsterFrost Monster
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
New York, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Imperial Stout aged in Apple Brandy Barrels

Added by BeerAdvocate on 01-11-2013

BEER STATS
Reviews:
58
Ratings:
387
Avg:
3.95
pDev:
9.87%
 
 
Wants:
26
Gots:
67
For Trade:
2
User Reviews
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Reviews: 58 | Ratings: 387
Photo of FatBoyGotSwagger
4.33/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours black with a 1’ head that falls to a lacing atop the ale and the side of the glass
Poured cold it smells like coco and chocolate
Taste is of roasted malt and fudge brownies, it is not harsh
Mouthfeel is smooth, 12% alcohol undetected at first but you can taste it as it warms up.
Overall this is a damn fine Imperial Stout, not overly hoppy, toasty, or sweet. Real solid.

 380 characters

Photo of Young_John
4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance is just fantastic. Pours nearly black with a finger and a half of tan head. Leaves nice sticky rings on the glass with every sip. Smell is sweet but delicate for an imperial especially considering its potency. Taste is rich and roasty with a slightly bitter finish. Feel is thick and rich. The 12% abv is apparent and yet fairly well hidden. Overall this is a fine example of the profile. It's a big beer that's not too complex and in my opinion is better enjoyed closer to room temperature.

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Photo of rdilauro
3.41/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Another stout for the season. I am always looking for the BEST stout. I did enjoy this one. Nothing in terms of coffee or bourbon which seems to be the latest in all stouts today.
But this has a very bitter chocolate taste. Something like a bakers chocolate
I am glad I tried this... but

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Photo of Roguer
3.83/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Beautiful black brew, topped with a thick brown head. Good retention and lacing.

Solid roasted barley aroma with a bit of dark overripe fruit. Just a hint of chocolate.

Flavor matches the aroma, with the chocolate slightly more prominent. Very roasty. Slightly sweet. Very grainy.

Sticky full feel, long retention, just slightly hot.

Excellent imperial stout, straight forward and delicious.

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Photo of keithmurray
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - dark mahogany with tan head

Smell - dark chocolate, roasted malts, coffee bean

Taste - dark chocolate, roasted malts, coffee bean, black licorice, vanilla

Mouthfeel - full bodied, medium carbonation, slight sweetness upfront with the chocolate, hoppy and bitter on the finish

Overall - pretty good RIS from Captain Lawrence for a chilly night

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a large brown foamy head with good retention and some light lacing. Aroma consists of roasted malt with light dry coffee notes and black chocolate notes also noticeable. Taste is also a mix between some roasted malt notes with light dry coffee and some black chocolate notes. Body is quite full with nice smooth texture and ABV is well hidden. A bit short on complexities but still an enjoyable imperial stout.

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Photo of brstls4drmrs
3.8/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A - pours a dark opaque liquid with a thin tan head. Good lacing that sticks to the glass and creates a polka dot picture of tan foam heads.

S - booze with some heavy dark fruit and hints of dark chocolate.

T - there's that booze again! Earthy malts and a small hint of chocolate on hyena finish. Not much else.

M - crispy medium carbonation and a bit thin on the finish.

O - not to shabby.

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Photo of MakeMineADoubleJack
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a snifter. Not much of a head, but what amassed was a deep tan. Slight lacing. While I've have better stouts, this one holds its own. Some nice chocolate and oaky tones to it.

12%??? Really? Drinks no tougher than 7 or 8%. I always appreciate that in a stout. I'm sure this'll sneak up on me once I'm done.

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Photo of KornWallace
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Date: 3/26/14
Location: Skibbo's
Glassware: Tulip
Appearance: Pours black with nearly no head. What little carbonation there is is light brown. Very little cling.
Aromatics: Some coffee, bitter chocolate and a lot of sweet. Malts in the back.
Flavor: Starts with the coffee flavor and bitter chocolates. A boat load of carbonation moves us into the sweet chocolate. Cocoa. And the beer gets sweeter with time
Finish: The finish isn't that strong. Some of the coffee and cocoa. Some of the carbonation but not a lot of any of it.
Notes Bottled 12/6/13

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Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
4.09/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into fluted snifter; jet black with a big fizzy mocha head that fades after a bit leaving some foam on top and a nice ring around the edge. No lacing.
Smell is dark roasted malt, bitter chocolate and cocoa, with a hint of sweeter chocolate.
Taste is huge; big roasted malt, booze, dark fruit, subdued sweetness. Finish leaves you reeling, sticky bitterness and sweetness all wandering around in a boozy haze.
Mouthfeel is huge, slick, and full.
Overall this is a good example of an imperial stout. Big in flavor, body, and %abv, although it's not super-complex or anything.

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Photo of KTCamm
3.81/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a twelve ounce bottle into a pint glass. 1/30

Pours total blackout. Wispy layer of light brown foam. Cherry fruit nose, boozy too. Taste is a bourbon barrel fused dark chocolate malt. Huge boozy backbone. Car bomb. Bam! Hits like a hammer, feel the full effect of the 12 abv. Proceed at your own risk.

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Photo of metter98
3.7/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Mugs Alehouse, Brooklyn, NY

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a thin off white collar around the edge of the glass—this died down and eventually completely faded away.
S: Light to moderate aromas of dark and roasted malts are present in the nose.
T: Much like the smell, the taste has flavors of dark and chocolate malts along with light hints of licorice and a slight amount of bitterness. No alcohol is perceptible.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer feels a little lighter in body compared to other Russian Imperial Stouts. It is very easy to drink since it hides its alcohol well.

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Photo of NuclearRich
3.81/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A. Pitch black beer, mocha colored head that is slow and small in formation, but lasts and lasts and laces a heavy fog down the sides of the glass

S. Roasted malts predominate with hints of coffee and cocoa, ever so slightly boozy, and a note of minerals and earth

T. Heavy duty roasted malts pushes the limits of roasty-meets-ashy, slight alcohol bite, just a little tangy the way a good dark beer needs to be, a little sweet which feeds a tasty chocolate

M. Dense, slick, lasting. Flavor sticks to the palate. Medium/light carbonation. Just enough bitterness keeps the sweetness in check.

O. Helluva big stout. For the ABV, the alcohol is hardly noticeable. The roasted malts are pushing the border of going too far, but remain tasty. This brings a certain extreme level to it that makes it stand out, but doesn't harm it. The body is exemplary for the style, and helps make this tasty treat a winter meal on its own. I'm happy with it.

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Photo of TBuikus
4.03/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours very dark and has a great aroma. Tastes of chocolate and a very sweet after taste. The taste of the 12% alcohol content is not noticeable at all and hits you by surprise when you finish your second one for the night. If you see this on the shelf this year it is worth the pick up even at $15 for a four-pack.

 314 characters

Photo of tigg924
3.52/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: high carbonation, 3/4 head, clear, dark brown in color

Smell: dark chocolate and cocoa

Taste: coffee grounds, deep dark chocolate, char, and alcohol

Mouthfeel: roasty with a sweet slight bitterness, medium-heavy body, high carbonation

Overall: A slightly above average American double stout. Nice, roasty, and clean, but not as blown away by this one as some of Captain Lawrence's other small bottle offerings. I would get this one again, but I would not rush out of my way for it.

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Photo of biegaman
4.09/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Frost Monster is dark and lightless as a winter night and has just a sprinkling of white (or, more accurately, greyish) powder atop. It appears dense as a block of solid ice; the beer is so opaque it refuses any highlighting even when held directly against the lamp.

When it comes to American-brewed imperial stouts, it's fair game to expect anything from bourbon to wood spice to a plethora of hops or espresso grinds (and often all of the above). Somewhat surprisingly, this beer doesn't seem the least bit brutish or obnoxious; it smells strong and rich but showcases, quite simply, nothing but dark and roasty malt.

Mind you, said malts do pack a ton of flavour: coffee beans, dark chocolate, smoke, roast, black licorice and a subtle trace of caramel sweetness. There's also lush notes of vanilla that accompany the chocolate brownie character derived from the roasted grains. It's a straight-forward (read: 'classic') example of a stout but no less strapping or robust.

Frost Monster has the subtle, dark fruity esters and warming anise-like note that is customary of traditional Russian Imperial Stouts (as opposed to modern, American-inspired interpretations that stress the espresso and decadent fudge profile). The mouthfeel marries black currant sweetness with a tarry texture and a lightly lingering roastiness. Alcohol is inferred but not flaunted.

Given the hop-beast that is Captain's Reserve Imperial IPA and the colossus of sourness that is Cuvee De Castleton, I expected Frost Monster to be a mammoth of an imperial stout, an embodiment of all that is rich, indulgent, gluttonous about American craft beer. But instead this turned out to be a textbook example of a classic RIS. It's a delicious, flawlessly brewed beer.

 1,745 characters

Photo of Kendo
4.06/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured from the bottle into a Piraat tulip/snifter-type glass. Body is black in appearance, though not as thick and motor-oil-like as some of this style. A small chocolate brown head settles on top but dissipates quickly.

S: Coffee, roasted barley malt and a touch of chocolate. Alcohol is noted as well as it warms.

T: Roasted coffee beans, roasted malt, molasses and generic fruitiness are all there, as well as the alcohol, which acts as a drying agent at the end of the sip. A bit sweeter than your normal RIS/Double Stout, and there's not really much chocolate - though I get a bit of cocoa powder - which is a surprise given the nose. Alcohol heat and drying impression linger in the aftertaste.

M: The feel is interesting - quite fizzy, carbonation-wise, which makes it feel lighter on the palate than would otherwise be expected, but also provides a certain sharpness or bite (most RIS's, in contrast, are more syrupy-thick and smooth). This one is, however, a heavyweight.

O: This is my second time having this beer; I really liked it the first time I had about a 4-5 oz portion. Now that I'm sitting down to review this, however, I'm finding it less impressive. It's good, but doesn't blow me away like a world class big stout.

 1,247 characters

Photo of Gmann
3.81/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a black color with a short dense brown head that settles into a thick ring. Very creamy looking.

The aroma is of roasted barley with some char. Bittersweet chocolate and perhaps some cocoa. Some anise. Big beefy stout aroma.

The taste has more of a milk chocolate flavor. The roast is fairly mild but provides a good base flavor. Good woody flavor. Seems to have some oat, as it is quite smooth, but I am not certain. Anise is definitely present. There is a bit of an alcohol note in the finish which is slightly unpleasant.

The feel is full with prickly carbonation that helps break up the body. Sweet and bitter on the palate, good balance. Slightly sticky and chalky in the finish. Bit boozy as well.

I think this is a good stout but the booze presence is a bit harsh. Tone it down a notch and this is a very good stout.

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Photo of PicoPapa
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle with a Bottled Date of12-05(?)-2013. Pours a rich, very dark brown color with a 1/4 inch of brown head. Virtually no lacing. The aroma is earthy and slightly nutty. Molasses, caramel and dark fruits. The taste is earthy as well. Hints of nuts and chocolate. More dark fruits and black coffee towards the end. Earthy, nutty and dark fruits at the finish. Slick mouthfeel. Fairly noticeable alcohol presence. Overall, pretty solid beer.

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Photo of scootny
4.08/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is a welcome winter blues blast for me.
A lovely dark cola with a brown head a nice amount of lacing. Aromatics include heavy coffee and chocolate with a significant char. Flavor follows suit with sweet roasted malt and lots of coffee and chocolate. Finish is clean and dry with a fuggles/golding signature. Weight is lightly heavy with an oily character. Sweet and malty in the front with a delicious overall drinkability. A plate of
cheeses of various character and time to enjoy this superb beer
please.

 512 characters

Photo of sulldaddy
3.41/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Sampling a cellar temp bottle poured into a snifter. Pours a dark cola black with tan frothy head of 3 cm that fades to a sturdy edge layer and streaks of wispy islands on the surface.
Aroma is fairly mild with some roasted malt and a bit of dark chocolate maybe a little earthy malt but the nose is mild.
First sip reveals a average body with fine yet robust carbonation that boosts the mouthfeel of the beer.
Flavor is roasted malt, brown sugar, dark choclate and molasses, I also get some booze and a bit of an earthy hop presence. Also a little anice or black licorice makes its presence known as I ip the beer. Slightly warm as it goes down the gullet.
The beer is an okay imperial stout, but the aroma is certainly more mild than I anticipated when I opened the bottle.
Not a bad or flawed beer, it drinks pretty easy, but I admit to being a little disappointed as I finish it off.

 887 characters

Photo of GreesyFizeek
3.32/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This one pours a fairly dark black color, with a small head, and no lacing.

This smells like burnt coffee grounds, ashy malt, and heavy duty booze.

My mistake might be having this fresh and not aging it for a few years. However, a beer should be ready when it's actually bottled. If it's for sale, it should be ready to go. As it is now, this is way too boozy and unbalanced. It's got astringent booze, with a burnt malt and burnt coffee that's slightly unpleasant. Not really a fan of this at all. I think some barrel-aging would really improve this one. I'm not one to typically just say everything is better in barrels, but I really think this one would be.

This is medium bodied, with a low level of carbonation, and a low level of drinkability.

Not all that great. Captain Lawrence has done better.

 807 characters

Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.83/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle into a Cigar City snifter.

Pours a rich, 2 finger dark mocha head with decent retention. Beer is pitch black. Lacing is stringy and layered with great stick. An excellent looking beer.

Nose is liquorice, chocolate, smoke, roast, cocoa and fudge. A light booziness sweetens the background a bit. Real solid.

Opens chocolate, cocoa, liquorice and smoke. Roast and espresso in the middle mixed with more chocolate, booze and coarse smoked malt. End is sweet with some hints of dark plum and other fruit. Coarse and slightly hot finish with a sticky chocolate, liquorice, and roast aftertaste. Pretty good.

Medium to full bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth but a bit boozy in the mouth and goes down rich and warm. Finishes thick and silky with a messy, lingering aftertaste. Solid.

This beer is a pleasant surprise after a couple of misses by Captain Lawrence. Certainly worth trying and one of the better offerings of the style from a NY-based brewery.

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Photo of fmccormi
3.87/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Straight pour from a 12oz pry-off bottle to an oversized wineglass (HF stemware); bottling date of December 6, 2013 printed in yellow ink on the shoulder of the bottle (“BOTTLED 12062013 1248 844/846”), making this just about three weeks old on the date of consumption. Mmm, fresh impy stouts . . .

Appearance (4.5): Two easy fingers of fine-grained, cappuccino-colored foam rise off of the pour, capping an effectively jet black body. It shows good retention, taking its very sweet time to die down and leaving a wide, almost unbroken collar stretching from the surface of the beer to half the head’s original height. So, it’s got outstanding retention for the style.

Smell (3.75): Lots of rich, sweet malt tones are evident in the smell of this beer, showing molasses and dark brown sugar, coffee liqueur, brandied fruitcake, and some cocoa powder hanging out in there, too. On the boozy side, but this is a big beer (12% ABV, apparently) and very fresh.

Taste (3.75): All in all, the palate follows the nose, but leaning toward cocoa powder and bitter chocolate (like unsweetened baking chocolate) more than fruitcake and molasses. Bitter chocolate, dark brown sugar, coffee liqueur, and a finish that’s partly numbing (brandied cake) and intensely bitter (utterly unsweetened chocolate), but rich and very smooth up until that point. There are some dark pit fruit notes opening up as it warms.

Mouthfeel (4.0): It’s a full-feeling beer, for sure, but the body does not have quite the heft or viscosity you might expect for such a goddamned big imperial stout. I’m not really complaining, though—it’s full, smooth, and has a very fine, very tingly, very smooth carbonation that spreads all over easily, matching the slightly numbing booziness of the body. It’s not necessarily textbook AI/DS, but it works in its own way.

Overall (4.0): This is, in the end, kind of a different type of American Double/Imperial Stout. It’s not the chewy, liquid espresso brownie you might expect from the style, or the syrupy, imperial milk stout brewed with “natural flavors added” that you might expect from the style, but rather something that hones in on molasses, pit fruits, integrated booze, and malt tones that don’t necessarily elicit coffee grounds and cacao nibs. But it’s still an imperial stout, and it’s still quite good.

 2,363 characters

Photo of JerzDevl2000
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up at Good Beer in New York a few weeks back, having never given this a go before and fortunate enough to find a single bottle of this. Captain Lawrence doesn't have that wide a distribution here in Jersey and this looked relatively appropriate for the season, even though it hasn't been that cold this week. For a Double/Imperial Stout, this felt amazingly easygoing for something with 12% ABV and was just as drinkable as dark beers that were half as strong. This wasn't complex but had just enough going for it that I'd enjoy it again if I were to come across it the next time I'm shopping for beer in the Big Apple!

The pour to this was as to be expected - dark, somewhat thick, and with a good head. Not terribly full when it came to the latter but it was tan present for a bit before fading away to a thin remnant on top of the liquid. A good amount of bitter chocolate and smokiness to the nose, which were both present in the taste as well. The mouthfeel was full and there were hints of dark fruits like plum and currant as well in here. Slightly cloying, the smokiness led to a good taste to this as the bitterness was similar to that of cocoa powder. This never felt like a chocolate Stout but since the alcohol was so recessed, the flavors came out a bit more and the aftertaste was nice and chewy as well, even though there was never a "motor oil" factor here to contend with.

Like reserved Stouts? Look no further. I could feel the alcohol kick in by the time I polished this off but never could I taste it. Beers like this grow on me quickly since they warm me up nicely without having to be shoved down or endured as I have to process the booze. A nice amount of sudsy lacing and some soda-like sweetness served as a reminder that not all Stouts have to taken so seriously and this was fun to drink. Worth the price and the experience of being subtly knocked over as I restrained myself from downing this too quickly. Recommended for those nice, cold Winter nights!

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Frost Monster from Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 58 ratings.
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