Espresso Love
Arbor Brewing - Plymouth Taproom

Espresso LoveEspresso Love
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Stout - American
Ranked #959
Ranked #48,767
3.34 | pDev: 19.76%
Arbor Brewing - Plymouth Taproom
Michigan, United States
Espresso LoveEspresso Love
Reviews: 87 | Ratings: 179 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by Bierguy5:
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Bierguy5 from Ohio

2.77/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12 oz. bottle. Pours a very dark brown color, with a lot of sediment. Thick tan head has many specks of said sediment. Great heat retention. Nice patches of lace in the ned.

A nice espresso note up front in the nose, followed by some milk chocolate, cream, and caramel. A slight fruity note. Pretty nice aroma.

Things now go downhill in a hurry. The malt character is not supporting the wondeful aroma. A bit of roasty and chocolate malt, but not depth at all. A harsh astringency, and odd sweetness follows, which is rather unpleasant.

Very thin body, with too much carbonation. The astringency lingers on the palate for a long time. A bit of warming as well. The nose was great, but the flavor really leaves something to be desired.

Aug 27, 2009
More User Reviews:
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Big_Dave from Texas

3/5  rDev -10.2%

Aug 06, 2014
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ssarkozi1 from Michigan

3/5  rDev -10.2%

Aug 27, 2014
Photo of Cevasic9

4.5/5  rDev +34.7%

Aug 04, 2014
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hopnado from Michigan

3.13/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Apr 20, 2016
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Dgiand from Michigan

2.75/5  rDev -17.7%

Aug 25, 2014
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shanegatter from Ohio

2.61/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Little too rough and medicine taste

Jun 25, 2017
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kyle_goochstink from Michigan

4.04/5  rDev +21%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Jun 21, 2016
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moonboogie_n8 from Michigan

3.46/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

not the full bodied breakfast stout i was expecting, but very drinkable and enjoyable.
may try another from the same company, but I'll go after other B-stouts when the time comes. decent coffee mocha flavor that's balanced well with roasted hops out the nose.

Apr 11, 2015
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MispeledStalion from Ohio

4.42/5  rDev +32.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Oct 10, 2015
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BeerAdvocate from Massachusetts

3.49/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From BeerAdvocate magazine Issue #59 (December 2011):

LOOK: Black, dissipating head

SMELL: Coffee syrup, dark chocolate, ripe dark fruit, toasted dark bread

TASTE: Smooth, slick, fresh coffee, dry, husky, toasted bread crust, mild twang, hint of charcoal, dried dark fruit, warming alcohol

Coffee, our other vice, ends up being more than decent addition here … as in, 20 pounds of freshly roasted coffee, plus some oatmeal; there’s the breakfast for ya. A bit raw, but not overly so. Could we wake up in the AM with a mug of this? Sure.

May 02, 2012
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brewdlyhooked13 from Ohio

2.21/5  rDev -33.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Courtesy of dschuster at the 5/1/08 BA Gathering at Catskellar

Appearance - pours a murky, blackish brown. Minimal head, just a lazy swirl in the middle and a thin crown. Just about a proper color but a lackluster show out of the bottle.

Aroma - a fine aroma of roasted malt and coffee. Fresh and rich and has me wondering how unwise it might be to drink a caffeine bomb later in the evening here. If it tastes as good as it smells I won't care...

Taste - brief malty grain, a tasty beginning of fresh coffee unfolds but is undone by a wash of sour/lactic tartness. If you hold the beer in the mouth for a few moments, you can get the coffee goodness that is intended but the sourness has the last word. If you take a quick sip/swallow, the coffee doesn't register, just the sour. A promising start but a KO finish I'm afraid.

Mouthfeel - average to thin body which could be better. Subdued carbonation which I kind of prefer for this coffee stout style.

Drinkability - lose the sour bit and this brew could be one of my favorites. With it though, it's one harsh bit of drinking, I can't even imagine what Todd Benzinger might have to say about it. Thanks anyway, Dave. ;-)

May 06, 2008
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Mitchster from Michigan

4.17/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 1.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

$1.90 for a 12oz bottle at Jack's. Opening the cap reveals barely more than a psst...hardly any carbonation. Pours to a limp deep brown, nearly black. No head, no lacing, no carbonation. The aroma is great...lots of black walnut and sweet vanilla, a hint of coffee when swirled. Mouthfeel is limp with a medium body. The taste is quite nice and recaptures the nose. There is quite a bit of chalkiness, but I like it. Wierd green leafy MJ note in there from the hops. Very mild bitterness, barely any to speak of. The espresso isn't really dominant, and I would barely notice it if it weren't called "Espresso Love". There is a distant kiwi fruit flavor in there, so it will probably turn into battery acid with any shelving... like the other Arbor Brewing beers I've had.

Nice balance with a little bit of all the flavors able to emerge, but certainly not a powerhouse stout compared to others in the category. Rated as is...flat.

Nov 10, 2007
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DrainBamage from Michigan

3.05/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Pours black and has very minimal head. Has aromas of roasted malts with a little sweetness to it. The taste of roasted malts and coffee is very good, but it is way too sweet. Mouthfeel is smooth, but doesn't have much carbonation at all. I had this on tap and it was very good. Unfortunately this does not match to it. I'll have it again on tap, but probably never again in a bottle.

Apr 09, 2008
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alexgash from Connecticut

2.45/5  rDev -26.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Dark, inky coffee brown with a small, tiny-bubbled, coca-brown head that doesn't last long. Oily, sugary, mocha-coffee aroma. Some roasted notes, but mainly sweet coffee/cream/chocolate frapucinno-esque. Roasted coffee and malt bitterness up front. Slightly tart, lacto-sweet astringency follow. Milk chocolate and muted coffee before more lacto-sour/sweet in the finish. Medium-bodied with an oily, flat feel. Undercarbonated. Might be off, if not it's not very good.

Nov 13, 2007
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Beaver13 from Colorado

3.5/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. Pours a dark brown with a creamy light tan head (after a vigorous pour) that quickly diminishes to a thin collar that leaves some lacing.

The aroma is sweet fudgy chocolate and coffee that are strong enough to hide some off-notes that seem to be hiding.

The flavor is sweet fudgy chocolate and some oatmeal and nuts followed by an acidic stale coffee. The mouthfeel is thin and watery with little carbonation.

Overall, it's not very complex and does have some flaws but is still enjoyable.

May 13, 2008
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BuckeyeNation from Iowa

4.04/5  rDev +21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Black coffee black with a miniscule caramel colored head in spite of an increasingly elevated pour. I hope there's nothing wrong with the carbonation because this sucker smells fantastic. The bubbly foam doesn't last and isn't interested in gracing the glass with more than a token amount of lace. In a minute or so, the beer should resemble a pint glass of coffee.

I've always been puzzled by the fact that I love the smell of coffee beer even though I don't like and don't drink coffee. Odd that. The nose is tremendous, especially if you're a dedicated java hound. Underneath the freshly-brewed goodness are appealing aromas of vanilla and creme caramel. Could Espresso Love possibly taste as good as it smells?

Not quite, but it's close. For starters, the mouthfeel isn't as full as it needs to be, considering the style and the ABV. Perhaps I'm just spoiled by the fact that many versions (like Founders Breakfast Stout) are huger than huge. I have a feeling that things will come together as the beer approaches room temperature.

The flavor profile is essentially a carbon copy of the aroma. In fact, if anything, it's even more crushed coffee-bean dominant. The sweetness of the malt (and the milk sugars?) are easily countered by the bitterness of the hops and the roasted malt. The finish favors dry and clean over sticky. I don't yet have a caffeine buzz, but I wouldn't be surprised if one hits in the final few ounces.

The mouthfeel makes something of a comeback, but it still isn't what it could be. I'm a little picky when it comes to stouts, so take my impressions with a grain of salt. The mild creaminess, the oatmeal softness and the subdued carbonation keeps things well above average.

Is there no end to the number of good-great breweries in the state of Michigan? If this beer is any indication of what Arbor Brewing is capable of, it's a crime that one has to travel to Ann Arbor to acquire it (I didn't see it in Grand Rapids). While it can't touch Founders Breakfast Stout, Espresso Love is damn good beer in its own right and is an easy recommendation for those traveling into enemy territory.

Sep 25, 2007
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CortexBomb from Michigan

3.05/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pour is proper stouty black, but the head left town extremely quickly, and there isn't even lacing left to show for it. The aroma is faintly coffee-ish and roasted, but not at the level I would expect for a stout.

The flavour starts off with a coffee twang and a milky sweet edge. Roasted tones show up in the back half, present albeit slightly subdued. The coffee tones stay present throughout. A light roasted nod on the finale. Good stuff, the coffee flavour is apparent throughout, but it doesn't make the beer abrasive. The milk flavour is borderline, I thought it was fine most of the sips, but it also had a bit of an off edge to it, not enough to really hurt the beer, but occasionally noticeable.

The mouth on this is light, albeit about average for an oatmeal. The drinkability also average. Java based beers tend to be a touch abrasive and difficult to drink very many of, and I imagine this would also fall into that category.

The bottom line: The initial impressions of this beer were not impressive, but the taste is pretty interesting and solid, particularly given the low ABV of this beer. I would like to try this on tap if I run into it (or stop by Arbor itself, though I doubt I'll ever go there in lieu of Ashley's...but I digress) but I probably wouldn't rebuy it in bottle form.

Nov 12, 2007
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Viggo from Canada (ON)

3.25/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Thanks to Lexx for picking this up in Michigan.

Pours an opaque dark brown/black, thin tan head forms, settles to a thin ring leaving some nice lacing behind. Smell is oily coffee beans, vanilla, chocolate roast, sour woodiness, interesting. Taste is buttery, fresh roasted coffee and vanilla, sourness is present and gets a bit stronger the more you drink but isn't totally unpleasant, caramel and chocolate near the finish. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation, pretty smooth, although the buttery sourness becomes a bit much. Thanks Lexx!

Jan 16, 2008
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goodbyeohio from Oregon

4.24/5  rDev +26.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

dark as dark can be with little interference, not even a smidgen from the lurkers who seek to destroy you and your omnipresent overlording.

first sniff evokes the most creamiest, coffeeist, deliciousist mocha flavors that i've ever this point, this beer is in the running, neck-n-neck with peche mortel, to establish a true champion. seriously, smell this beer, and name a coffee (with this aroma) that you'd rather be drinking.smooth body and flows effortlessly over the palate, unlike other bitter presences.

i thought so!

let's move fwd....

Sep 02, 2007
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hopdog from Pennsylvania

3.45/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle acquired in trade with hoppymeal (thanks!).

Poured a dark, dark brown color with a small sized off white head. Aromas of coffee, roast, chocolate, caramel, and oats. Tastes of coffee, oats, and caramel. Has a light tart finish.

Notes from 2/6/08

Nov 20, 2008
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CharlesDarwin from Rhode Island

3.42/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 Oz Bottle (Thanks Sean!). Boasting granular coffee aroma, combated with chocolate nibs and faint smoked salt. Rich and chewy nose. Pours a deep black brown pour, with rim of tan. Flavor moves into a slightly harsher coffee flavor then muddles in a bit of mud and caramel. Body tends thin and slightly sour, but not unpleasantly. Chocolate oils settle in and the coffee rests quietly. One of the cleaner regular beers I've had from Arbor.

Aug 07, 2008
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FtownThrowDown from Ohio

1.67/5  rDev -50%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Bottle picked up on my recent trip to Michigan. I love espresso, so this should be nice!
Pours a translucent brown in color with no head showing on the pour. Smell is slight coffee and chocolate. Only slight.
Taste is way too sweet. Lactic or maybe infected. Barely enough carbonation to notice. Mouthfeel is thin and unimpressive.

May 16, 2008
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SaCkErZ9 from South Carolina

1.6/5  rDev -52.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Thanks go out to hoppymeal for this one.

When I popped the cap, there was barely any noise at all. This has me worried. Dispensed into a pint glass with no carbonation, no head, no nuthin'. I even did an extremely heavy pour to arouse some carbonation but alas, nothing happened. Ink black and somewhat viscous.

Aroma was sweet and malty. Kind of sour too. Somewhat fruity, no hops. Slightly medicinal and aromas of cough syrup and just worn socks (well, my socks anyway). Tangy and quite frankly, not very appealing.

Very sour, tartlike, almost like a stout lambic. Very tart as the beer hits the palate. Sweet and sour at the same time. As interesting and complex as that sounds, it doesnt taste very good. Is there raspberry lambic in this thing??

I dont know what in the hell happened here; perhaps a bad beer. But, looking at other reviews of this beer, it seems this may be the norm. Mine may taste a little worse possibly due to shipping or storage. Whatever happened, this was gross. About four sips and I couldnt take anymore. I rarely pour beer out, but this one is going right in the drain (or maybe I will reduce it down and serve with some chicken tonight??). Yuck!!

Dec 30, 2007
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emerge077 from Illinois

2.92/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bought 2 bottles of this at Siciliano's, the other one was undrinkable.

Pours with a tan head with loose bubbles. They fade down to a bare skim.

Some decent coffee grounds in the aroma, but nothing close to espresso. Tobacco leaf if you really try hard.

Very light feel with astringent bitterness and nothing else. This wouldn't even pass as a porter. Tart with an earthy remnant of coffee bitterness. Nothing redeemable about this.

Aug 23, 2008
Espresso Love from Arbor Brewing - Plymouth Taproom
Beer rating: 77 out of 100 with 179 ratings