Dark Apparition | Jackie O's Pub & Brewery

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155 Reviews
Dark ApparitionDark Apparition

Brewed by:
Jackie O's Pub & Brewery
Ohio, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
According to the brewer, this is a Russian Imperial Stout, not American Double Stout.

Added by Hophead101 on 11-06-2008

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Reviews: 155 | Ratings: 847
Photo of bylerteck
4.08/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle. 2016.

A - Pitch black and a mocha head of about one finger. Spotty lace and some retention which is expected for the style.

S - Licorice, leather, some hops, chocolate, fudge. Sugar.

T - Sweet again. Some roast, but not a ton. Leans more towards chocolate, rich dense bread and sweet sugary notes. Chocolate and bread are what come to mind the most.

M - Carbonation is nice. Medium. Body is pretty big and the finish is lot's of lingering bitterness and sweetness.

O/D - This is a good sipper. Definitely leans to the sweeter side without being too big and rich. While it is sweet, it has bitterness to balance and doesn't attack you with big barrel flavours or lot's of roast and coffee. Definitely doesn't show it's strength. Good stuff.

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Photo of Marius
4.35/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Sampled at CBC 2016 - day 2. Pitch black with a beige head. Notes of coffee, chocolate, dark roast, light caramel. Smooth mouthfeel, well balanced aromas.

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Photo of Amguerra305
4.41/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a tad thin but is more opaque under greater quantity of liquid. Smell is chocolate and burnt toffee. Taste follows the smell with a pleasant bitterness on the back end. Pretty silky going down. Overall a really good Russian imperial that requires a bit more viscosity to be truly world class.

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Photo of rolltide8425
4.34/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours black as the night. First smell was all coffee; subsequent smells revealed molasses and chocolate. Taste brings a light sweetness and a little bourbon. The malt undertones are fantastic.

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Photo of m_hall
4.79/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a 12 oz bottle (provided via the good graces of a co-worker from Ohio) into a tulip. Completely and utterly black, topped by a 1 finger tall, dense tan head with good retention and lots of sticky lacing.

Aromas are sweet malts, brown sugar, dark bread, along with figs and a cinnamon-like spicy note.

Flavors come big with bittersweet chocolate, coffee and toffee up front. Dark fruits (black plum, figs) come in after and raise the sweetness in the middle, somewhat like a Belgian Strong Dark, leading up to a long finish with lots of smoky, earthy notes. Outstandingly balanced all the way through the palate.

Mouth-feel is medium heavy bodied, slightly oily, creamy. Low carbonation, and a pleasantly controlled alcohol warmth. You'll know you're drinking a big beer, but it's a very gentle weight.

A class-act RIS, without a doubt, if Jackie O's ever gets wider distribution and gets this beer into more hands, they could really make waves in the craft scene. This is among the handful of best Imperial Stouts I've ever tried, along with Ten FIDY, Bell's Expedition Stout, and Founder's Breakfast Stout. Now if you'll pardon me, I think I'm going to move to Ohio so I can drink this every day.

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Photo of johnnnniee
4/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from Bayshore Beverage Sandusky, drank in the hotel room in a beer desert in western NY
Solid black color with a small tan head. Rich roasty with lots of dark fruity molasses to it. Light earth and alcohol to counter. Nice little sipper.

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Photo of SABERG
4.1/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into the modified tulip glass.
A - It's dark in there! A beautiful mocha cap rides on top of what looks like a glass of bakers chocolate. The lacing forms
broad stripes as the experience progresses.
S - Dark fruits, fig, raisin. Earthy nose with toffee and dark chocolate mingling quite adroitly with coffee, dark sugar, and molasses. There
is a bit of that hot alcohol tingle on the nose, ever so gentle.
T - That cornucopia of stout goodness, rich malt backbone, dark roast without being overbearing, Semi sweet chocolate, red raspberry, pumpernickel toast, with more fig spread. A nice alcohol warmth resides as the experience unfolds.
F - Medium in body, gently carbonated, the start is sweet, then the fully coated palate responds to a perfectly applied bitterness. The alcohol provides a sweep at the end almost enough to clear out that rich mix. Lingering for some time is a slightly bitter chocolate thread.
O - This offering , displays all the elements of a big stout with deft skill. A body that seems light is rich in flavors, full in its impact delivering a full RIS experience. A wonderful warmth from the ABV sits in the correct place.The brewers craft is on full display with this offering.

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Photo of Stevem68
4.11/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a midnight black color. Aroma is roasted malts and chocolate. Flavor is rich and creamy chocolate and roasted malts. Has a smooth low carbonation feel. Overall a delicious beer.

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Photo of brenlinn
5/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

For this being a base beer of the BA version, it stands alone. Using the brown sugar gives this stout a distinct flavor that I feel other breweries try to replicate.

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Photo of Omnium
4.14/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle > Tulip Glass

A - Pitch black with a half a finger of fizzy tan head, medium lacing.
S - Roasted malt, big smokiness, fig, cherry, charred wood, light hints of coffee.
T - Classic RIS, big smokiness, some darker fruit, big burnt wood roasted malt flavor, definitely some coffee, bitter earthy hops.
M - A little on the thin side for how high the abv is.
O - Good RIS, but surprised how thin and watery it feels. Flavor and Aroma deliver though.

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Photo of CernMatt
4.54/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer was a nice stout. It was a heavy stout, which was enjoyable on a crappy weather day. It was smooth and not overpowering. It had a very nice finish and no bad after taste.

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Photo of kemoarps
4.32/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Jet black bordering on coffee murky at the extents, massive dark brown head. Gorgeous.

Nose is rich and dark as Joseph Conrad's heart. Chocolate and molasses and bitter coffee. All the notes you want out of an RIS, well done, just could have been a little more pronounced.

Flavour doesn't blaze any new unseen trails, but what it does it does very well. That chocolate is still very definitely there and a burnt bitter edge with less coffee and molasses. If you went into this one having just read the label expecting "coffee, chocolate, caramel, and molasses," well... you would not be disappointed. As I am not. Coffee comes through more as it warms. Again, not pushing boundaries just taking a known space and executing it at a very high level. More please.

Body is creamy smoothe and somewhat oily. Less thick and chewy than I would have gone for, and the carbonation took me a bit by surprise, but man it is smoothe and oat creamy.

This is a fantastic brew, and one that just keeps getting better as it gets closer to room temperature. Much much love to @WesMantooth for including this in his NBS BIF #3 box. Thanks Corey!

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Photo of spacecake9
4.54/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is my 400th review so I wanted something special.
Poured into my Werk Force snifter.
A - Pours black with a beautiful tan head that settles to a thick ring.
S - Aroma is not as powerful as I would like but I pick up coffee and molasses.
T - Flavors are deep and wonderful with notes of coffee, molasses and chocolate.
M - Thick, creamy, low carbonation.
O - This is an outstanding, well balanced RIS. This is right up there with Ten Fiddy and Old Raspy. Just fantastic!

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Photo of beerthulhu
4.24/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Dark viscose pour, saddle brown thin, creamy head topping. Average rate of retention, milky, film lacing.

S: Rich chocolate-oats for aroma. Milky touches, very smooth, warm cocoa, marshmellow and vanilla spicing. Nice strength, smokey wood and barley with some sweet burnt caramel on the trail.

T: Roasted malt for flavor, very rich roasty chocolate oats and charred wood. Silty smooth campfire minerality, smooth charred alcohol (whiskey barrel), with some fresh esspresso notes. Dark fruit of plums, smokey barley and burnt currant fruitiness.

M: Silky smooth mouthful, oily and viscose, small touches of carbonation.

O: Refined and polished drinking experience, exceptionally smooth 10.5% slides down effortlessly like a 7% at best. Drinks incredibly well with a roasty chocolate-oat after-taste. Outstanding quality.

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Photo of TreyIsWilson
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A - Pours jet black with a thin tan head.

S - Aromas of dark chocolate and roasted malts.

T - The flavor is dark chocolate, espresso, roasted malts, and some dark fruit. There is some char in the finish.

M - Full body with medium carbonation. Very soft and creamy mouthfeel. Dry finish.

O - Very solid RIS. The flavor are big and bold. Great beer.

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Photo of jcflorian
4.6/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One of my top surprises at EBF on Friday.

Smooth mouthfeel with taste of coffee, chocolate and roasted malts.

Full bodied all the way with great finish.

One of my highlights of the night.

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Photo of Thomas_Wikman
4.26/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had this one while grilling antelope in the darkness. Luckily I did not see any apparitions, except my big hungry dog. Anyway, it is a very dark beer with a thin brown head. Wow it had a lot of flavor. I tasted chocolate, coffee, roasted malts. It was creamy and nice sipping.

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Photo of Immortale25
4.4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Dogfish traditional oversized snifter. No freshness date.

A- Pours a 99% opaque black color with a 1/4 inch dark tan head that retains a bit before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a mostly full sheet of surface foam. Resilient lacing leaves a solid ring behind.

S- Heavy dark roast with some dark fruit notes in there as well. Some booze plus some dark chocolate, molasses and char.

T- Big malt character with some sweetness in front and then bam! Heavy char finish that has plenty of character and doesn't go too overboard. Bitter roast brings notes of espresso bean, bitter cocoa and a bit of smoke.

M- Semi-creamy with medium-low carbonation and a full body.

O- I had had the BA version of this first and loved it. Nice to know the base beer is just as spectacular.

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Photo of smanson56
4.24/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured a dark black color into my snifter with a thin dark tan head. The nose is mellow with the rich coffee and chocolate overtones. The taste follows the nose to the coffee and chocolate but there is a little bitterness here that you don't get in the nose. The mouth feel is smooth and creamy.

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Photo of Vonerichs
4.43/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thick black body. Creamy appearance. Head disappears quickly.

Smells like a fudge brownie. Root beer, coffee, vanilla.

The chocolate and coffee are pronounced very well and deep. Slightly boozy.

Thick and creamy mouthfeel. Low carbonation.

A great representation of the style.

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Photo of Jaycase
4.2/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2015 bottle

a: black as night. frothy mocha head (~1 1/2 fingers) which subsides slowly.

s: roasted malts, lactose, chocolate

t: heavy on roasted maltiness. dark chocolate midway through the finish. some licorice too. slightly bitter on the finish as it warms.

m: nice milky creaminess. med carbonation.

o: this to me is like a rich, decadent RIS milkshake. RIS fans should try this at least once. I'm now interested in trying some of the variants as well. Solid RIS this. And you get .7 ounces free for some reason. Cheers!

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Photo of Shroud0fdoom
4.48/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12.7 Ounce Bottle into a Belgian Tulip.

I was at work today wasn't really wanting a brew. Yet today seems to be Stout Day. I'll play along with the rest of those who Care. Now let's get on with the brew. Off the Jump this brew Pours an incredible Dark Brown body that gives the illusion of being Black in the Glass. There's nice Chocolate tone Hues that illuminate around the glass. The Crown on this brew sheds a Deep Mocha Cloud and giving the brew a Majestic appearance. Fantastic.

Let's take a nose dive into the Aroma, shall we? This first hits the nostrils with a melange of Dark Roasted Complexity. It's not just one thing that grabs your attention. It's just a rich array of Chocolate sweetness that follows with Quality Coffee roast. Nice hits of Nutty and Fruity (notes of Pear meat) esters flourishes on the backend. Nice Subtle Floral hop notes finishes this off. Just an Amazing Smelling Brew.

Time to savor the Flavor! This first hits the palate with a subtle notes of Molasses that takes a turn for Chocolate. Giving me a "Taste-Gasm"! In the mid palate Caramel sweetness makes itself known. Nice dose of Coffee roast comes in last but not Least. This finishes slightly weak/thin but a nice strong bitterness comes in and makes a sweet love with the residual sugars left behind. Aftertaste of strong Caramel and Fruity subtleties. The feel of this brew is Medium-Full body with excellent smoothness like Silk, yet the Sharp Carbonation is what really draws this back from me..just a little bit.

Overall: There's so much going on in this brew to just pin point what I enjoy the most. All the flavors are Balanced with sweetness, bitterness and no Booze at all. This is a nice relaxed brew that gets better as it Warms. It's rich yet not Over the Top. Just a great brew that is worthy of Attention. This brew is Recommended.

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Photo of RBassSFHOPit2ME
4.37/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

A - Jet black. Can't see at all through the glass, which is great! Aggressive pour leaves near no head and has me questioning if this beer has any carbonation at all.

S - WOW!!!! If you blindfolded me and told me that this is Bourbon County Brand Stout, I'd say 100% this is BCBS. Fudge Brownie. Pastry chocolate, cherries & Mild plumb. Bourbon. Vanilla. Oh my Gawd! Brown Sugar really adds to this style. Arguably better than the new Maple craze of this style.

T - Really. Everything mentioned in the nose transfers over into the taste perfectly. This is a BCBS Light at 10.5%. I'm quite familiar with BCBS & this is arguably the same beer with less alcohol. What does this mean? It's awesome!!! Minus the mouthfeel.

M - It's borderline flat. This is really the only aspect of where this beer is lacking. And make no doubt about it. This is where it is lacking.

O - This beer has everything going for it, minus the mouthfeel. The potential is HUGE with this one. Clean it up and we have a winner. Cheers!!!

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Photo of goldenbooter
5/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Awesome russian stout. Strong nose and a deep brown head. Flavor stays with you. Thick with malt and a hint of caramel. Expensive but worth trying every single time.

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Photo of damndirtyape
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12.7fl bottle served in a snifter glass. 2015 bottling. From looking at the bottom of the bottle after the pour, looks like some sediment came along with the pour.

Appearance: Pitch black with a thin tan ring of foam. An occasional island of lacing.

Smell: Rich chocolate (cocoa), hint of raisin, coffee, molasses, and burnt sugar. Very nice.

Taste: Very much like the smell, but no raisin. Bittersweet chocolate, coffee, molasses, caramel sweetness, and a mild bitter finish. The finish is a bit woody and herbal at the same time. Very nice.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth, light carbonation, a little chewy.

Overall / Drinkability: I had this on tap about a month ago at South Park Tavern and enjoyed it so much I thought I should buy a bottle and see if it was as good as I remember. I think the mouthfeel is better when it's on tap, but the beer is quite tasty and is a definitely good slow sipping beer. The alcohol is very well hidden - dangerously so. Good thing I just have this one bottle. The beer went well with meatloaf and would definitely pair well with dessert. Actually, it would pair really well with chocolate chip cookies and I wish I had some right now as I finish this beer off. Well done and something I'll have to pick up again.

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Dark Apparition from Jackie O's Pub & Brewery
4.18 out of 5 based on 847 ratings.
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