The Dogfather | Laughing Dog Brewing

BA SCORE
86
very good
576 Ratings
The DogfatherThe Dogfather
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Laughing Dog Brewing
Idaho, United States
laughingdogbrewing.com

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
The Dogfather is one of the biggest brews we have made. Weighing in at a hefty 11% percent, the Dogfather has 7 malts and 4 different hops giving it a complex flavor profile.

71 IBU

Added by JohnGalt1 on 11-07-2008

BEER STATS
Ratings:
576
Reviews:
244
Avg:
3.85
pDev:
14.81%
 
 
Wants:
45
Gots:
93
For Trade:
5
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 576 |  Reviews: 244
Photo of CampusCrew
4.53/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

appearance: deep dark black, nearly ebony, loaded head

smell: loaded coffee, and heavy chocolate aromas

taste: rich and slight chocolate roasted flavors but had a smooth rich taste, Dry, not sweet at all. loads of coffee flavor. I drinking this really fresh. Very Hoppy!

mouthfeel: thick, creamy, high carbonation for stout

drinkability: This beer is under rated because I beleive people are drinking this fresh. This beer is a great candidate for aging. I still loved it fresh. high alcohol that will mellow out and one of the hoppiest imp stouts I have had. Love it!

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Photo of mcnabb0001
1.87/5  rDev -51.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

22 Oz bomber with a play on the GodFather with a Dogs head on the bottle pretty cool.

A - pours pitch black and very thick looking just like motor oil with a huge foamy tan head. Carefull when you pour this one as the head rises fast i had a glass full of foam. Pour it very slow.

S - sweet fruity and coffee smell with a touch of alcohol mix in there. I can smell raisins and some fig.

T - Pretty bitter up front with some coffee and dark chocalate sneaking in. Big alcohol kick as this one warms going down into your chest. Pretty harsh actually not a fan of bitter Imperial Stouts.

M - pretty carbonated for a Imperial Stout not as smooth as most I have tasted.

D - Glad I bought just a bomber even though that might be too much.

Cool looking bottle the appearance of this stout is impressive but it stops there. Not a fan of the taste or mouthful. This one is pretty harsh going down. This beer go worse as it warmed I couldnt get through the bomber I bought and I feel bad about that because I hate wasting beer. You live and you learn I guess.

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Photo of beerwolf77
3.26/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I recieved this beer from a few BA's. Thanks to all of you. Poured into my tulip froma bottle.

A: Pitch black, two fingers of mocha hued head, tiny flecks of soapy lace, small cap forms

S: Chocolate, molasses, non bitter coffee, roasted malt, just a hint of wet cardboard

T: Huge bitter black coffee up front. Dark chocolate, molasses and a touch of roastiness.

M: Seems a touch thin for a RIS. Light carbonation.

D: Overall nothing real special going on here. I had high hopes with the cool name. Sadly this beer was more dog than anything.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.37/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

22 oz bottle split and poured into a Sierra Nevada tulip. No date or info.

I'm starting to sound like a broken record; thanks to Beerwolf77 for another beer!

A - Pitch black beer with slivers of amber around the edges. A dense tan head deflates fairly quickly and leaves only pinches of tan lace on the glass.

S - Rich roasted malts with light milk chocolate and molasses hints. A pinch of ground coffee in there with a solid hoppiness balance. Not stand-out, but it's good so far.

T - Very acrid bitterness right off the bat, it lingers through the whole experience. Heavily roasted malts and very bitter chocolate with some molasses and coffee, this one is farrrr to bitter.

M - Dry, dry, dry, and über bitter acrid malts that almost finish with a cardboard-shaving, super cocoa dry texture.

D - This is a beer with a bite much worse than the bark, the more I sip it, the more it becomes way to cloying. The dry bitterness is a little outrageous in this brew to the point of being way unbalanced. Hard to finish.

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Photo of WesWes
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a pitch black color with a thick frothy brown head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is decent. It has a warm, boozy black malt scent. It's bitter as hell with a stiff back malt feel. The taste is decent as well. It has a very bitter black malt flavor. It goes down slow and warm with a ton of heat in the finish. There is some chocolate character as well, but it's not too pronounced. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a pretty solid double stout, but it's too boozy for my taste.

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Photo of bigdonniebrasco
2.65/5  rDev -31.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Black with a tall brown colored head. Maybe could be a little blacker.

Smell is sweet with a fruity berry aroma, little vanilla and much patent malt. Smells quite sweet and slightly like Kahlúa.

Starts out sweet and strong with roasted malt, slight smoky aftertaste. Vanilla is in this one but really I pickup more of the wood flavor than vanilla. Not bad but needs more complex a flavor.

Mouthfeel is good.

Seems a bit out of balance sweet and Charred are fighting it out and neither really wins.

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Photo of malthegal
3.24/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A: Pours a deep, deep, deep brown. Very thick caramel head, large bubbles. Beautiful lacing left on the glass.

S: There is a definite alcohol aroma, lots of dark roasted malt and dark chocolate. A definitive bourbon aroma.

T: Similar to the aroma. A dark roasted malt and dark choclate make a longstanding presence, supported with a bourbon dominance.

M: Very carbonated and thick. Very dry and bitter for this style, with an extreme alcohol heavy taste.

D: Definitely a slow drinking beer, I'd probably only have one in a sitting due to it's strong alcohol character.

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Photo of aasher
3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a midnight, slightly viscous black with a light, light khaki head. There are basically only two aromas present, oak and malt. The taste is pretty solid. It tasted roasted, malty and has almost like a milk stout sweetness to it. It's definitely different (I'm pretty sure the bottle is from 2009) and the alcohol isn't present in the taste at all. It looks heavier than it drinks. It's not as chewy as you'd expect. It's very drinkable considering the alcohol content. I must say I enjoyed the Dogfather, I can't wait to try my Bourbon Barrel Aged version.

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Photo of scruffwhor
4.35/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a jet black with on of the most energetic heads I've ever seen on an RIS. Brown and carbonated like champagne, you need to be careful pouring this black brew. But sadly, none of that foams stays after the first few sips.

The aroma is of burnt black chocolate and Italian roast coffee with some medium vanilla and a little tobacco.

The taste is a the lovely dark chocoalte and coffee I've come to love about Russian Imperial Stouts. Add some coffee cream , but a hint of Bailey's liquer. The finish is a bitter burnt coffee that lingers.

A nice sipping beer indeed. Worth lots of praise.

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Photo of FreshHawk
4.05/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Deep dark chocolate color with a large creamy, smooth, frothy, thick, cafe colored head. Really good retention with a good creamy layer of lace left.

S - Lots of dark roasted malt with dark chocolate and a dark roasted coffee. Pretty good amount of bourbon aroma and some earthy hop presence. A touch of dark fruit.

T - Rich, roasted malt is dominant. Bitter dark chocolate and coffee. Lots of alcohol heat and bourbon presence in this one. Also has a pretty good amount of hop presence (some citrus, good amount of earthy and grassy bitter hops too). Some dark fruit as well. Touches of burnt brown sugar and a bit of vanilla. Pretty complex and big flavors.

M - Medium body with a good amount of carbonation. A little light for the style. Pretty smooth and velvety and a bit slick.

D - Definitely a sipper. Lots of alcohol heat and roasted bitterness makes this not the most drinkable beer, but it does make a nice sipper/nightcap akin to a bourbon.

Notes: Strong bold flavors with a lot of alcohol presence. A good amount of hop bitterness for a stout, but this is very malt forward. Nice nightcap/sipper, but I wouldn't want to drink a lot of this. Split a bottle with a couple guys, and that appears to be a good idea. Interesting, big, bold flavors.

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Photo of crusian
3/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

bottle from JAHMUR thanks man!
pours nice and black with about a finger of head... pretty.

smells of chocolate and coffee and some bourbon, the bourbon may be from the high abv. I smell cinnamon too, weird. smells like a huge impy stout.

taste is actually a bit sour...I think this may be at the beginning of infection... thats a shame... seems very thin as well. damn... I had high hopes. The sour is not too bad on it, I am glad I drank it now... but I bet this is a great beer if it isnt sour. Lots of coffee on the finish, but sour is the predominant characteristic. :(

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Photo of Khazadum
3.99/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

So my amazing BB4 came to visit me downtown and brought me a gift. It seemed that he visited a shop on the south side and brought me a bottle of something I haven't tried before. Thanks for the bomber Keith! Poured into my increasingly well-used brandy snifter.

Vision
A normal pour with no special swirls or heavy handedness generated the most head I have ever seen in a beer. I literally had 3 fingers of mocha head last for minutes... not two, three... but at least five minutes of bubbly inches. Inky darkness with a less than oily body from visual cues. The lacing is decent, but nothing spectacular. I find the never-ending head distracting.

Bouquet
Roasted and burnt notes overpower a faint coffee like tone. No chocolates or superb flavors hinted at or discovered. Usually, I'm so annoyed with an Imperial Stout's nose because of the overwhelming burnt molecules.

However, this one is interesting. The nose is subtle. I can tell that it is an imperial stout, but it is like a possible mate hiding its lovely bits behind an alluring fan dance. There is what I know to be there, but something sweet just behind it all that I can't fully know. Literally.

Flavor Profile
As to be expected from this Stout, I am hit with a right hook of burnt grains. I am dissappointed... instantly shocked! Surprise, says my beer, you thought it was going to be a subtle flavor? Wrong! This bad boy is all about the burnt flavors up front, but just like a right hook... after the impact there is a clearing of all thoughts and something new enters the consciousness.

The malts come out of no where with a caramel sweetness that ebbs away into what I most definitely remember in other beers, dark chocolate. The final evolution of this beer is the bitter chocolate note layering itself all over the middle of my tongue. It is a great finish to have. I'm pleasantly surprised after my initial assumptions.

Things seem to blend magnificently well here, that is until further sips reveal a bitter alcohol that distracts. Sure, it worms and tingles... but it also bites. I wish it was more up front rather than poking its ugly nose half-way into my flavor progression almost all the time. It ruins the chocolate all too often. Still, it has on the whole a good taste to it, but it could have been great.

Oral Sensations
There is a creamy nature to this beer. It is at first creamy, but it does not give its heart completely to this property. A darker, less desirable, property starts to become more apparent after the first sips. It is at once creamy, and watery all at once.

The carbonation lends it that creamy nature, but it is still thin enough to notice beyond these initial moments that it could be better. There is only a lingering element of flavor on my tongue and no where else. It lacks the body to really stick to anywhere else. The carbonation doesn't really tingle as I'm used to ( that tingle is all alcohol unfortunately, and it is not pleasant tingling ).

Conclusions
The mantra of this beer seems to be good, but not great. It falls short on something easy in each category and just throws itself out there to accept it as is. For a gift, awesome. To buy this, ehhh.... I'd really rather not. I'm glad I don't know the cost because I don't think I'd pay more than five dollars for this bomber. Probably never again because it just really isn't worth drinking again over an unknown beer, even.

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Photo of SeattleBeerBlog
2.46/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

2008 bought from Bottleworks. super excited then...

A- pours a nice pitch black that almost has some reddish hues. Has a nice one inch light brown head that lasts a while and some nice lacing.

S- smells of alcohol, leather, and burnt carmel. Too much Alcohol.

T- starts off with Coffee and espresso then quickly goes down from there, Chemical and metallic, oxidized big time.

M- nice carbonation, but a bit thin, especially for a Imperial

D-Overall I was super disappointed as a paid a bundle and it had all the making to be great, this beer should age well and it obviously didn't, since the beer was handled by a good beer shop I have to give this one to the brewer. Should have been much better than it was so drink it fresh as this is not one to age.

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Photo of billab914
2.74/5  rDev -28.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 22oz bottle into my Portsmouth tulip. Poured black in color with half of the glass filling with a dark tan foamy head. The head retention was very good and it left some thick sheets of lacing as I drank it.

The aroma shows more hoppyness then most imperial stouts. The hops come through with an earthy, slightly spicy flavor. There is a pretty bold bitter roastedness that comes through as well. The flavors just don't seem to mesh well for me in the nose, they seem more like competing flavors instead of balancing ones.

The taste shows a strong burnt, smoky, roasted characteristic. It has a strange dry almost salty like flavor that comes through that really doesn't fit at all. A moderate chocolate flavor tries to come through a bit but is overshadowed unfortunately. I'm getting a decent amount of earthy hops to it as well. It feels like it's just so extreme on the roasted and bitter flavor that it overshadows everything else.

The mouthfeel is on the thicker side but carbonation feels a bit too high for the style for my preference. Drinkability isn't that good for me, it just seemed all over the place with flavors and they just didn't mesh well together. The roasted, dry, bitterness was just too extreme and needed balancing. Unfortunately I just didn't care for this one at all.

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Photo of bluejacket74
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22 ounce bottle. Served in a snifter, the beer pours dark brown/black with about an inch and a half frothy brown head. Head retention is good, with a decent amount of lacing left on the glass. Aroma is mostly roasted malt, chocolate, and coffee, and there's also a bit of dark fruit and smoke. It tastes like roasted and burnt/charred malt, coffee, bittersweet chocolate, licorice, dark fruit and caramel. If you're a fan of bitter, roasty tasting stouts, this is a beer for you! The sweet flavors come out a bit more as the beer warms (and I let this bottle sit for half an hour before opening it), but the roasty bitter flavors are definitely stronger. Mouthfeel/body is medium and it's creamy, but I think it has way too much carbonation, especially for this style of beer. Because of the high carbonation, the drinkability of this beer is just average. It would be more enjoyable to drink if the carbonation levels were cut down a good bit. I thought it was a decent brew overall, I'll have to revisit this one in the future.

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Photo of Chico1985
3/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I have tried to share this pup a few times to no avail. So I have decided to take care of him myself. It will be alot of responsibility, but I think I'm ready for a dog in my life. "08" notched at the bottom, so I'm assuming this is from late '08 or early '09.

Pours black with a huge 3-finger brown head. Eventually turns to a swirly cap, leaves some lacing.

The smell is heavy on roasted malt, chocolate and an odd spiciness. Almost like smoked meat or soy sauce. Some booze as well.

Taste has same odd spiciness, definitely smoky/saltiness. Roasted malt, getting more caramel than chocolate. Very boozy at first but tones itself down a little over time. A little bit of hops. Has a strong bourbon-esque aftertaste.

Has the thick body one would expect of an imperial stout, but something is stinging my tongue. High carbonation or booze, probably both.

Funny, I enjoyed this when I had it on-tap a couple months ago, I remember it tasting quite different. It's not terrible but it lost my interest after maybe 4 ounces, 22 was just a chore. It's difficult to enjoy.

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Photo of Naugros
3.96/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Yikes! Make sure to open and start to pour ten minutes prior to wanting to drink it. Okay a slight exaggeration, but the bottle will slowly develop a geyser, so start to pour it, but only enough to relieve the geyser. The head rises FIVE fingers and would have gone higher had it not poured over the sides of the glass! The liquid is inky black and the head tan. The lace is sticky and makes a beautiful pattern as it shrinks like melting ice cream. Once you get used to how to pour this beer, you'll be rewarded with a cascade as the foam reduces to liquid and interacts with the carbonation. Pretty neat to watch. If the rest of this beer is as impressive then the rating is too low.

Really hard to smell much through all of this dense foam! But I can get toasty malt as the head dies down a little and I attempt to blow a hole through the protective covering, spattering my face with suds.

I don't have the patience to wait for the head to die enough to get a good whiff so I'm calling it "Good" and moving on to the taste. Oh and what a strong taste! The toasty smell translates to a burnt toast taste. I was expecting a bunch of heat from 11%, but it's well masked by the sweetness of the malts. The alcohol returns the favor by making this malty brew finish dry. The wash is dominated by a bitterness that does not appear to be due to hops presence but from all the dark malt.

Slightly viscous with a nice dry finish. There's some bitterness, but not lasting. The carbonation is appropriate for this style. This beer would be very drinkable if not for two factors: the high alcohol content and the fact that you need to wait to get a drink off of each pour. But I feel it is worth this wait. Way to go Idaho!

Something about having the word "Dog" in a brewery's name translates to strong beer and good beer. Add Laughing Dog to the hierarchy that includes Dogfish Head, Flying Dog and Brew Dog. They're not in any order there, so don't yell at me that Brew Dog is better than Flying Dog.

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Photo of srandycarter
3.35/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Dark, near black pour, tan head sticks around for awhile. Head consists of very airy bubbles. Some cling lace.

S - Cocoa, chocolate chip cookies, mocha like. Hot, and a little licorice, I think.

T - This is where it goes downhill for me. Bitter, overly cooked coffee, sitting on the burner when most of the liquid is gone. I am exaggerating, but you get the idea.

M - Over balanced to the bitter, fair carb, very coating.

D - Way too damn bitter. Nasty coffee.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
3.26/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22 oz bomber without a freshness date brought back from Oregon by a generous BA. Pours a complete black color with a massive, overflowing light brown foam. Retention is very good. 3:1 ratio at least foam to beer, even with a careful pour.

Nose is like mint chocolate chip ice cream, heavy on the chocolate. Plenty of fruitiness, but not overbearing...figs and melons. Low roastiness on this stout.

Taste is chocolaty alcohol, martini-esque even. Baking cocoa galore. Tastes green with an astringent malt not unlike scotch whiskey. Could use a bump in body and creaminess. Has a fluffy and airy feel to it. Hops are there aplenty in the finish, bitter and long-lasting along with more roast than was apparent in the nose. Decent, but I was expecting much more from the infamous Dogfather.

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Photo of compass40204
3.85/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into (plastic) cup (all I had). Thick head, small bubbles, dark tan. The head might last longer in an appropriate vessel, but I can only speculate. This stuff is black as black can be, opaque. Smells sweet and slightly roasty. Tastes sweet, almost too sweet. Mild flavor of burnt sugar. Hops totally absent in all aspects. A few IBU's would be great. Sticky sweetness lingers. Medium body for an imperial stout. For one this sweet, I'd like more body. These guys make some good stuff, and this didn't meet my expectations. I look for more dark malt or coffee in an imperial stout. There just wasn't much balance to this beer. I bet it would be awesome in a beer float, or paired with dessert.

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Photo of smcolw
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Huge tan head that is five-fingers thick in a 20oz glass. Still two-fingers thick after four minutes. Nice spidery lace on the glass. So dark that even sunlight cannot penetrate.

Lots of chocolate and cream aroma. Light chalkiness with a malted milk ball smell. On the third sniff, I detect a high level of alcohol.

Nice chocolate ice cream flavor on the initial taste. Thinner than expected. Some complexity in that there is two different bitter taste. Burnt (black patent) malt is one element. The other is notable hop which shows up primarily in the swallow and aftertaste.

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Photo of Durge
3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

The color of this beauty is pitch black, opaque as a steak. The head is a nice oatmeal color with goodly lacing. The nose detects rosy malt wine with a whisper of pine hop and woodsy alcohol. The flavor says thick leafy chocolate with herbal bitterness and a good bit of smoke. It has a heavy silky feel with very little carbonation and a notable alcohol presence. The hoppy heaviness and dark malt charcoal malkes a nice blend. A pretty big beer and not highly drinkable.

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Photo of Pdiddey3d
3.61/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up @Belmont Station while visiting some family in Portland in February and have been waiting to give it a taste.

A: Pours a delicious looking motor oil black, appears thick, great two finger caramel colored head. Head stuck around till the last sip leaving some modest lacing.

S: WOW. Alcohol. I would say bourbon is the dominant scent, slight dark chocolate and coffee aromas and a faint amount of hops.

T: Very close to the scent. Bourbon dominates. Dark chocolate, roasted malts and a slightly bitter finish from the hops.

M: Thick and smooth. Good carbonation. Goes down very easy but it is definitely a sipper.

D: Overall a nice IS. Unique in flavor but not exactly something i would go out of my way to try again. Strong alcohol character makes it slow drinking beer.

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Photo of ColForbinBC
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a snifter

Pours jet black with a creamy, large mocha cap. Lines and dots of lace coat the inside of the glass. This is a pretty stout upon first pour.

The aroma is of roasted dark malt and dark chocolate right off the bat. Some mild coffee and light grassy hops. I also get some oak and light bourbon influence: dark cherries, plums and vanilla.

Everything melds together very well. Bourbon notes are well integrated with roasted malt and dark Belgian chocolate. Plums, raisins, dark cherries and lightly charred oak. This was a pleasant surprise for me. A solid stout with a robust flavor profile that hits on everything very well.

Full bodied, big and robust with a soft, supple feel. As the beer warms, the flavors become richer and deeper.

I really enjoyed this beer. I found it to be just what I was looking for in this category. Full, robust, and smooth. Solid on all fronts.

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Photo of beer2day
4.12/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Opaque black with very light red tint. 1.5 finger dark, dark head. No retention, but laces well.

Nose is all chocolate, caramel, and coffee. Very complex.

Hits heavy and hard. Thick roast coffee and caramel malt. Dark chocolate and toasted licorice. Just wow.

Feel is better than average.

22oz is a lot to consume for this one, but I'm not sharing!

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The Dogfather from Laughing Dog Brewing
3.85 out of 5 based on 576 ratings.
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