Plead The 5th Imperial Stout | Dark Horse Brewing Company

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Plead The 5th Imperial StoutPlead The 5th Imperial Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Dark Horse Brewing Company
Michigan, United States
darkhorsebrewery.com

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
2010 and pre: white label
2011: white label OR black label with black no logo cap
2012: black label with logo cap
2013: black label with logo cap, ABV of 11% in the top right corner and new government warning
2014 - white label with black logo cap, ABV of 11% in the top right corner, government warning on bottom right side of label

Added by HopHead84 on 09-27-2008

BEER STATS
Ratings:
3,962
Reviews:
929
Avg:
4.23
pDev:
8.27%
 
 
Wants:
554
Gots:
1,058
For Trade:
114
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 3,962 |  Reviews: 929
Photo of NolaHopHead
4.48/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle. Jet black with minimal head. Smells of dark chocolate which is the dominate flavor along with some hints of vanilla and smoke. Just sweet enough with a dry finish. Smooth mouthfeel and the abv is well hidden. This is an exceptional stout.

 252 characters

Photo of AlpacaAlpaca
3.86/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of stephens101
4.56/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2013 version.

Empties the bottle black with a sheer, tan head. Aroma is spot on with milk chocolate, dark fruits, subtle vinegar and burnt oak floating freely. This is one of the smoothest beers I can recall trying. Just floats its way down (despite its medium to heavy body) with prominent notes of milk chocolate, bubblegum and black licorice, followed by hints of oak, cherry and vanilla. Fusel alcohol is barely noticed in the back. A beautiful, well-crafted stout that pairs well with this cool and rainy spring evening.

 527 characters

Photo of FaradayUncaged
4.64/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of sholland119
4.43/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at the brewpub.

A-Beautiful. Dark and rich with a thick, dark mocha head. My favorite loon in an RIS. A beer that looks like this rarely disappoints.

S-Nicely complex. Lots of bourbon and alcohol, vanilla, dark chocolate and milk chocolate.

T-Caramel and dark chocolate in the front with lost of vanilla. Then a hint of maple, then some bourony notes in the finish. Quite hot in the finish, but it's fresh and 14% so no huge surprise there.

M-Medium bodied but rich and coating.

D-14% so proceed with caution (duh!). A little hot (again, duh!) but really delicious and enjoyable.

HV

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Photo of HeartofMiami
3.84/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of robgage
4/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of pmarlowe
4.22/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Kuhnhenn tulip glass. Thanks to Scoot1969 for this as an extra.

Pours black with a thick motor oil consistency, reddish tan ring of head. You know when you make chocolate milk with Hershey's syrup, and when you're done drinking the glass there's still some syrup at the bottom? The bottle has this. I thought maybe this was a chocolate stout, but I don't see any indication of that. Smells like sweet malt, chocolate syrup, and a little cream and vanilla. Has a nice fresh smell to it. Really nice, based on the smell I can't wait to take a sip. Taste is sweet Hershey's syrup up front, roasted malt, a little bittersweet cocoa and smoke on the finish. Full bodied and mouth coating, nice medium-light carbonation, warming from the alcohol. Overall, a delicious, big, sweet stout, about as drinkable as you could hope for given the parameters of the beer.

 856 characters

Photo of ralerwen
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of Zbeetleman
4.75/5  rDev +12.3%

Photo of armock
4.2/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to champ103 for hooking this bottle up in a trade.

A - Poured a black color with a brown head that leaves some lacing behind

S - Is of roasted malts that give off chocolate scents and a hint of alcohol

T - Follows the nose with the roasted malt giving chocolate flavors and a touch of alcohol

M - This beer has a smooth full body with lighter carbonation to it

O - I'm enjoying this beer quite a bit right now the taste is making it a little too easy to drink this is a beer to look out for to try

 509 characters

Photo of joe1510
4.34/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz Bottle
$11.99
Four Seasons Liquors

Plead the 5th glugs from the bottle pouring like 10w30. It's black. No light passes through whatsoever and as a matter of fact, I think it actually swallows light. The foam is easy to conjure and grows to a couple fingers in height. the head is dark beige, so dark in fact that it seems to sport a nearly purple hue. The foam eventually settles to a thin cap while leaving respectable velvety lacing down the sides of the glass.

The nose is packed full of rich stoutiness. Big and bold. The roast is on the heavy side of the spectrum with a touch of char. Walnut pith and black coffee are bold through the middle. Macadamia nuttiness adds both character and brightness. There's a noticeable alcohol presence but it's clean and appetizing in the form of a blackberry brandy. Dark berries play a nice role along with cocoa powder that verges on slightly bitter. This beer is a monster.

As in your face as the nose happened to be, the flavor profile comes along with even more precise, hit you in the mouth, interpretations of each aspect I mentioned above. The roast, again is on the heavier side with the slight char but that whole aspect sort of cradles the rest. Dark berries soaked in a neutral spirit kick it off. It's spicy and rich. Straight cocoa powder adds a touch of bitterness and molten brownies bring along a huge dark chocolate character. Black dark roast adds character and there's a touch of earthiness as well. Whew! This guy is slam packed!

The body is amazingly easy to handle for the immense size. Weighing in at 11% the body somehow manages to sit between moderate and heavy. It doesn't reach that viscous quality like you'd expect which helps and hurts. The drinkability is higher but the luxuriousness falls. The roast leaves behind a dry finish with a good amount of bitterness, and I can get behind that with such a hefty libation. The whole thing works.

This beer has been a favorite of mine for years now. With that said, I haven't drank a bottle in a long time. Revisiting opens my eyes up to its greatness again. This beer is not to be trifled with. It's big, bold, and mean. Old school in nature and it won't take no shit.

 2,197 characters

Photo of scott2269
4.75/5  rDev +12.3%

Photo of mctizzz
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
4.22/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Formed about a 1/4" dark brown head on top of an inky black, motor oil body. Lacing was in thin, sticky sheets.

Nose is heavy on coffee and chocolate, with bold roast malts, caramel, and smoky notes.

Taste is bold and forward, but not over the top. Bold roast and burnt malt flavors, accented with a light dark fruit body, and tons of chocolate and coffee.

Body is thick and inky, lingering chocolate and coffee finish.

Overall it's damn delicious stuff, certainly worthy of all the hype. I slow sipped this one for over an hour and enjoyed every minute of it.

 564 characters

Photo of cultclassic89
4.34/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of mtbdonn
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of Jayli
3.63/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Acquired from GBVDave from our most recent trade so a big THANK YOU goes out to him!
Consumed 8/2, poured in to a pint glass

A: This beer pours a motor oil, thick, opaque black, no head and minimal spotty lacing.

S: Nose is licorice, roast malts, and hints of chocolate.

T: Taste is - oh thank god, not much licorice! Dark chocolate at the forefront mingled with charred malts. Those sharp notes lend to a softer milk chocolate. Dark fruits come in - some raisin and date. Deep coffee notes complete the finish of this beer.

M: Medium to fuller bodied, medium carbonation, rich, thick and creamy.

O: Goes down easily, tasty, rather filling, well hidden kick, nice representation of style. This is a nice stout to enjoy a pint of.

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Photo of schnarr84
4.65/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of jaasen64
4.2/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle from 4-pack purchased at local liquor store for $15

A- Pours a pitch dark black with a very thin creamy mocha brown head. A little bit above average carbonation for a stout, can see tiny carbonation bubbles rising along the side of the bottle. Looks pretty thick/a little bit syrupy.

S- Smells delicious- espresso beans, malts, chocolate, and a little bit of booze (not surprising considering the 12% abv).

T- Sweet, but not overly sweet. Taste of milk chocolate, espresso, and a little bit of roasted malts.

M- Creamy, heavy, and a little bit syrupy. Alcohol hard to detect, 12% ABV hard to detect. Well balanced.

O- This was a very good imperial stout. I could have definitely used a more pronounced flavor and a little bit more sweetness, but other then that it was great. For a 12% abv stout the alcohol is very well hidden and balanced with the sweetness of the stout. A lot of imperial stouts sweetness of the stout deosn't really hide the abv well enough to go with the sweetness. While this stout isn't overly sweet, the high abv is very well hidden. Not my favorite imperial stout that I've had, but I would definitely recommend trying it.

I've sampled the Bourbon Barrel Aged Plead at EBF, which is what prompted me to want to try this beer. From what I remember that beer had a little bit more flavor.

 1,332 characters

Photo of RobinLee
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of TheBrewo
4.21/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

We crack the top and pour a brew of dark black into our Founders snifters It holds a two finger head of espresso colored bubbles, which show tight uniformity and nice retention. This is easily reproducible, leaving islands of lacing around the glasses, and a crescent moon of bubbles crowing the top of the liquid. No haze or sediment is appreciated, and carbonation appears to be moderate. The aroma is amazingly deep, with richly roasted and char-burned black, coffee, and chocolate malts. Milky vanillas, red cherries, plum, and the alcohol all add sweetness. Otherwise the nose is taken up in a whirlwind of complexity, with campfire ash, buttery diacetyls, faint pseudo-woodiness, cornmeal, vegetal metallics, chocolate wafers, light grassy hops, heavy vinyl plastics, and light apricot fruitiness. With warmth comes anise and black pepper spiciness. Our first impression is that the flavoring is wildly roasty and just as smoky as the nose would suggest, with big chalky dryness and surprising sweetness on the back. As we sip, the taste opens with deeply charred and roasted malts, smooth vanillas, sweet toffees, marmalade sugars, gingerbread cookie breadiness, dark chocolates, fruity cherry booziness, and green bark. The peak hits with continued dark pit fruitiness and booze, with that bitter char base, grass and bark, mineral, bittered muskiness, and chalky yeast. The ending wash comes with ash, tobacco leafiness, chalkboard, insanely roasted cereal grain, macerated strawberry fruitiness, brandy syrups, unsweetened dark chocolate nibs, banana esters, fiery booze, and fusel chemical medicinals. The aftertaste breathes of graphite and pencil eraser, burnt wood ash, roasted coconuts, chalk, bitterly roasted coffee and chocolate malts, lightly fusel booziness, mustiness, pear fruitiness, crumbling tree bark, and plastics. The body is full and syrupy, and the carbonation is medium, but with stark initial prickle. Each sip gives thick slurp, smack, cream, and froth, with pleasant finishing pop. The mouth is left heavily coated, but with quickly drying chalky astringency across the tongue and hard palate, with sugary stickiness to the corners of the mouth. The abv was appropriate, and the beer is a slow sipper.

Overall, what we enjoyed most about this beer was its aroma. This aspect was just so over the top robust, with woodiness from out of nowhere, char and ash, fruity sweets to match, and general complexity. The blend really comes through and each individual component finds its mate, striking harmony. The flavoring follows nicely, with just as much punch through the taste. Here, however, things did not strike as beautiful a balance, but rather just swam together in the same pool. The booze was way forward, even for the style, but it did offer some nice sweetness towards the front of the sip, contributing to the flavoring itself in a way that many beers lack. The sip was slurpy, creamy, and coating, helping to offset some of that brutal chalky astringency. This is a huge, impressive offering from Dark Horse, and we can’t wait to try the barrel aged version.

 3,103 characters

Photo of JDV
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of Bierguy5
4.37/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a jet, inky black. Thin tan head holds for a couple minutes then fades to a thin ring, leaving a few spots of lace.

Nice roasty aroma. A bit of dark fruit, and some vinous notes. Some dark chocolate near the end. A whiff of alcohol.

A bit of sweetness up front. Roasty, maybe some espresso and bittersweet chocolate. Darker fruit is restrained. Alcohol shows some warmth at the end.

Full body. Lower carbonation. Nice and chewy. A very solid beer.

 458 characters

Photo of Phigg1102
4.33/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pitch black and opaque. About a half finger of mocha foam that settles into a thin cap. dark chocolate and light cherry hits the nose first, the roasted malt character isn't overpowering and marries nicely with the beer. moderate sweetness in the taste, with the roasted malt again not overpoweringly bitter. a touch of dark fruit with dark chocolate and roasted coffee. medium full mouthfeel and a sweet finish.

 412 characters

Plead The 5th Imperial Stout from Dark Horse Brewing Company
4.23 out of 5 based on 3,962 ratings.
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