Yeti Imperial Stout | Great Divide Brewing Company

1,764 Reviews
Yeti Imperial StoutYeti Imperial Stout

Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
An onslaught of the senses. It starts with big, roasty malt flavor that gives way to rich caramel and toffee notes. YETI gets its bold hop character from an enormous quantity of American hops.

Added by cokes on 08-09-2003

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Reviews: 1,764 | Ratings: 5,345
Photo of klewis
4.28/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A: Pours pitch black with a two-finger tan head. Leaves tons of lacing on its way down the glass.

S: Huge smell of chocolate and toffee with hints of coffee and hops. Awesome.

T: This beer has intense coffee and bitter chocolate flavors balanced nicely with the hops and a prominent earthy character. Strong hop bitterness and a slight alcoholic presence in the finish.

M: Very viscous and full. Smooth carbonation and a nice stickyness make the mouthfeel very complimenting to the taste.

D: This beer doesn't have any qualities unique from its contemporaries, but is definitely worth trying and perhaps drinking on a regular basis.

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Photo of acrawf6
4.76/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours out a beautiful black, one of the most potent black hues i have had. Almost no light at all come through. Great tan head foams up. Beautiful indeed.

Smells quite interesting. At first smell, i honestly have to say it reminded me of my dog's old dry dogfood, but that really isnt the case. I just wanted to bring that up if anyone else first got that. Very natural smell. Sweet smell and like a dry fruit like prunes, perhaps. Very potent smell. More malty than the hops in it. To me the smells remind me of a barley wine.

Taste is quite good. Very complex. First it is quite sweet and heavy. the hops (75 ibus) is quite present, more than i expected. It is very creamy. Lots of toffee flavor comes through, a very good amount. Under that is the coffee flavor. Does have quite a sherry flavor to it, or port wine. Aftertaste is more malty and a deep sweetness like molassis. Aftertaste also has a slight chocolate hint to it with some more coffee flavor. Alcohol does slightly come out in the aftertaste, but at 9.5%alc. by vol., not all that direct.

Mouthfeel is great. Very, very creamy. Great balance. good amount of carbonation.

Overall, i think this beer is quite incredible. This beer can be enjoyed right after being bottled, or after time cellared and be great either way (havent tried the aging, but i'm sure it would be). So full and complex, but still so very drinkable. What a great beer! Can't wait to try the oak aged tomorrow....

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Photo of cameraman
4.62/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours very heavy, dark brown color, and is opaque. It has a nice caramel head that laces nicely. The aroma is very strong, and can be smelled several feet away, strong hop aroma and hints of the dark malt. The taste, the hops just come right up there and attack your tastebuds, folowed by this sweet chocolate flavor. The mouthfeel is full bodied and rich, much like whole milk. This is sipping beer, with big flavor. Sit back and enjoy this one.

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Photo of bennetj17
4.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

As this beer starts to pour it looks as thick as motor oil, and is very black. Head develops slowly and although it's short it's still remarkable. The foam is a reddish brown/burnt orange color, very dark and inviting. Smells like coffee, chocolate and strong grassy hops. The taste is huge... chocolate, coffee, nuts, both sweet and sour flavors. I'm smiling and puckering at the same time. Good strong hop flavors also. This one is amazingly bitter. This beer feels as thick as whole milk, and is pretty darn chewy. With its rich fullness and intense taste it's like a delicacy so drink it slow and enjoy...

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Photo of MaltyGoodness
3.71/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle provided by AKSmokedPorter via BS-BIF

Pours a used motor oil black with a thick chocolate head that fades. Nice lacing on the glass.

Quite a robust aroma of dark roasted grains and earthy hops with some hints of sweet malt. Hints of chocolate are also present.

An immediate taste of sweet malt that rushes into a dark rosated grain flavor. This is followed by a big bitter hop bite and finishes with a blend of hops and roated malt. A slight alcohol presence in the aftertaste. Seems on the young side.

Big full body, slick and smooth.

No problems consuming the bomber. I think that with some age, this will become even better as the flavors have more time to mesh. I look forward to trying the Oak Aged version.

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Photo of nvsblman
4.23/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very dark black with a light coffee colored head. The aroma is sweet, smelling of brown sugar, roasted malts, and some coffee, with just a hint of hops. The flavor is rich and malty. Lots of chocolate, some toast, a slight smokiness, and a coffee flavor that lasts into the background. There is a nice piney hop balance. A full, chewy mouthfeel with nice carbonation. This is pretty well balance and hides the alcohol amazingly well.

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Photo of evanackerman
3.42/5  rDev -19%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

the bottle says that the beer is "an onslaught of the senses" and this is certainly true!

Yeti pours out like the darkest of used motor oils, thick and smooth with a monstrous billowing head that never goes away.

aroma is of rotten fruit with a bit of hop presence.

the initial taste is a wallop of malt that would make the strongest dopplebock pale in comparison. strong prune and fig characteristics followed by roasty malt flavor. Second comes the hop kick which is pretty severe.

This beer is not for the faint of heart - almost too much for me but i still enjoy it.

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Photo of Naes
3.59/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This beer is jet black with a tall dark tan head. Lacing and retention is good.
The aroma is quite roasty with an alcohol presence and some sweet malty tones.
The flavor starts out quite sweet with the toffee/coffee flavors and becomes semi bitter with hops near the finish. There is a definite alcohol presence along with it being roasty and chocolaty throughout the entire sip.
Mouth feel is full bodied and mildly carbonated.

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Photo of sacfly
3.36/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a very impressive black with a cascade of dark brown bubbles. Awesome head. I found myself watching the head settle. Again, awesome.

Smell is burnt, coffee, a hint of chocolate. Taste is a let down. Alcohol dominates the palate. Medium body, coffee and black grains but alcohol and more alcohol dominate. I could not get past it.

I may get it again just to watch it settle, but the alcohol is not well hidden. 9.5% i'll give it a break, but alcohol... man...

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Photo of waughbrew
4.48/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Black-as-all-get-up with a light brown head that stays and sticks. Smell is oooh mocha, leafy dirt, and dark chocolate. Real nice. Flavor is a pleasant mix of roast with molasses to stick it together. Thick, low carbonation, clean finish. Pleasant and happy. Great! Piney chocolate perfectly melded. Finish could use a hint more complexity, but the fudginess of this beer is very nice and it is something that I hope to have often.

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Photo of DrJay
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This poured a viscous black with faint brown highlights. It had a thin tan head that produced fine lace. Giant maltiness in the aroma, with lots of caramel, molasses, and a bit of roast. Hop character was quite restrained. The bitterness was quite high and there was a lot of grapefruit hop flavour mixed with a bit of pine resin to start. Sweetness kicked in at the mid, followed by a lingering roasted bitterness and lower levels of hop flavour. Full, thick body with a smooth texture and a bit of slickness from the residual sugar. Pretty good balance for such a big beer. Great flavour and aroma. Thanks Zithal!

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Photo of cubedbee
4.41/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My first Great Divide beer, 22 oz bomber with no date, although I'm assuming 2005 since they just started distributing in MD. Pours an opaque oil black with two fingers of dense brown head, good retention, nice thick lacing---this is one good looking stout. Smell is pretty big floral hops over a nice chocolaty espresso and some brown sugar sweetness. Taste is awesome, a big roasty chocolate caramel coffee burst of dark goodness followed by an explosion of green leafy floral hops. Reminds me of the Black Sun by Three Flloyd's I just had although the hops are less dominating and the wonderful stout flavors come through better. Fulll bodied with a somewhat oily feel due to the hops, this is a fairly easy drinker for it's strength. This is a really suberb double stout, I'm glad I can finally get my hands on it, looking forward to trying the oak-aged one in my fridge.

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Photo of Viggo
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours midnight black, very opaque, no light getting through this fucker, big tan head forms, some nice lacing. Smell is roast coffee, chocolate, carmael, dates, floral/pine hops, some alcohol. Taste is roasty, with caramel, then chocolate middle, super pine and floral hops, and then a chocolate/coffee aftertaste. Mouthfeel is full bodied, with low carbonation, very smooth. Good stout but I liked the oak-aged better. This one seems a little unbalanced with the bitterness.

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Photo of doubleipa
4.06/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma was as expected: roasted, coffee, but not very strong. Nice creamy, light-brown head. Excellent lacing and a fully lasting head. Color=black. Initial flavor was moderately sweet with a similar, long finish. Medium to full body with a syrupy texture. There was a heavy alcohol finish. I was a bit underimpressed with this one, as I really love the Oak-Aged version. I think this one needs a year with respect to the alcohol feel.

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Photo of WeymouthMike
3.9/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From the 22oz bottle this poured a super black with a good size, brownish head. Smells of nuts and alcohol are easily detected. As this beer warmed the alcohol taste and smell increased while there was a good amount of lacing on the pint glass. This is a very good beer and for the price to ounce ratio this is a great beer. I believe I paid around $5.99 for the 22oz and let this sit around for 2-3 months, no freshness or born on date on this one but this had no effect as this was great from start to finish.

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Photo of redteg02
4.7/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: like changing the oil in my car, this one poured a nice deep thick black. the head at the top collects a quarter inch thick and is a darker brown than new castle itself.

Smell: the smell of roasted nuts fills the air. there is also a sweet, maybe a molasses, hiding in there somewhere. very robust smell

Taste: roasted nuts take the forefront, followed by a subtle sweetness. the roast nut flavor is amazing and strong. very tasty.

Mouthfeel: wonderful, absolutely wonderful. chewy and full, my favorite feeling.

Notes: definitely take this one out of the fridge before opening. once it hits that 50-55F it opens up nicely.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.53/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Total, complete, absolute, utter black that is devoid of even a hint of lightening at the edges. The head is one of the darkest I've ever seen and has the texture, persistence and lace generation of the hoppiest IPA imaginable. I hope Great Divide isn't simply blowing smoke with their claim that this beer contains "an enormous quantity of hops". Simply put, the appearance is American double stout perfection.

The nose is impressively powerful. I'd even go so far as to call it darkly pungent. It consists of concentrated blackstrap molasses, bittersweet chocolate fudge, crushed coffee beans, scathingly citric hops and (unfortunately) alcohol. There's power to burn and any number of dark aromas to love, but I need a better job of ethanol masking to mention Yeti in the same breath as the world's best stouts.

Alcohol is also noted on the palate, although it's an integral part of the flavor profile rather than an outsider. The flavor is as big time as the appearance and the aroma suggested it would be. The thing that gives YIS its distinctive personality is sweetness and a wonderful tongue shredding hoppiness. The contrast between those two is what provides the lip smacking, gotta-gulp-it, out of this world deliciousness.

The malt structure is Titanic and oozes black maltiness from every porthole. The beer tastes like dark caramel-centered, fudge-covered, anise seed-flecked, coffee bean-studded beer candy. Given the behemoth that is malt, it's even more mind blowing that hops steal the show. This bottle is at least 6 months old, so it must have been a real humdinger when fresh. Only Bear Republic Big Bear Black gives it a run for its money in terms of hoppiness.

Not only does the sweet-bitter contrast work beautifully when it comes to the flavor profile, but it creates an interesting mouthfeel as well. The high malt sugar load results in one of the most full, sticky, lightly syrupy mouthfeels in recent memory, even as the hops cut through it like a razor-sharp stiletto. It's soothing and beautifully biting at once.

Yeti Imperial Stout is a hop lover's stout. If you have a low lupulin tolerance or believe that stouts are about malt and malt only, then give this beer a wide berth. If you like over the top beer, beer that is full to bursting with both barley malt and hop flowers, then you owe it to yourself to acquire Yeti by the case. My knees have gone weak at the thought of an oak aged version.

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Photo of sinistermadman
4.23/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an almost opaque black with just the slightest iodine toned edge highlights. Head pours up nice and fluffy; lacing retains well.

Nice aroma. Brown sugar, coffee, toffee and other assorted roasty aromas.

It should be noted I tried the oak aged Yeti before this brew. Similar characteristics... coffee, molasses, brown sugar all tinge this smooth, resinous feeling brew. Quite drinkable and palatable. Alcohol struts it's stuff once the brew warms. If there is any distinguishable difference it may be that the oak aged Yeti seems to have a bit smoother, mellower character. In my opinion it really doesn't warrant the extra $$ as this brew is quite smooth as is.

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Photo of bditty187
4.21/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Black in hue, the liquid is completely black, even when backlit there was not shading. This is what an Imperial Stout is supposed to look like. Beige head, at its highest point the foam was two-fingers tall. Textbook appearance, look up “Imperial Stout” in Webster’s and you’ll see a picture of this beer. Head retention was excellent; it was slow to fade to a half-finger cap. The lacing started before I took a sip. I absolutely love when a beer does that! The subsequent lacing was widespread, very webby. This is a great-looking beer.

The nose just didn’t blast out of the glass like I had expected. The hops were the first thing I noticed, piney mainly with a citrus rind underbelly; flowery too with a kiss of grass. The malt follows, burnt caramel, molasses, hints of mocha coffee, and a kiss of charred earth. I can detect some alcohol in the mix as well as some dark fruit like raisins, dates, and even some apples. Moderate potency… yes, the nose is inviting but it is not on the same level as Dark Lord. However, Yeti is something like a third of the price? When I look at it that way, the nose is comparable. Whatever any of that means, money doesn’t make a beer great. Nevertheless, I did expect more. More power, more nuances, more alcohol and malt and hops. Still, as is, this beer smells lovely!

The palate is closer to meeting my expectations. Roasted malts… coffee, chocolate, charcoal, smoked earth; yeah it’s nice! The maltiness is rich enough and fairly rounded. The hops are secondary; they provide a pleasant blast of bitterness that plays nicely with the astringency from the roast. Piney upfront with a louder citrus vibe at the back; when I burp the hops they are grapefruity. Dark fruits (like dates and raisins) plus a mild blend of apples and pears; the fruitiness works very well with the alcohol. Honestly the heat is minimal, the booze is well-hidden. It is easy to detect this beer is high in alcohol. Rummy. There is a long aftertaste, roasty with hop bitterness; I am surprised at how dry this beer is. I am thinking this would be great with steak or dessert! This is a very good Imperial Stout.

Medium in body, it is too thin for the style. The beer just slides down my throat. I am supposed to sip and savor this, not drink it! Low but natural carbonation, the mouthfeel is lacking a bit. It needs more beef.

Plenty drinkable… damn likeable… I wish I had more. This is a great “everyday” Imperial Stout. I am I that jagged? No. This beer is great but it just isn’t special. No doubt, this is a well-made and tasty beer but I need more to really be impressed. Maybe that is the beer geek in me. I do appreciate this beer. I do like it. I would strongly recommend. I hope I don’t come off as a dick… but I am afraid I do. I really want to drink another bomber, right now! I purchased my bottle in Lawrence, KS. I will get more!

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Photo of bjohnson
4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bomber from Downtown Wine and Spirits in Somerville. $6.95.

A: pours a jet black with a half finger brownish/red tinted creamy head that leaves great lace.

S: Aromas of chocolate and coffee malts with a late blooming fruit hoppyness that hits the nose unexpectedly.

T: Coffee and chocolate comes first, then the alcohol, and finishes with the fruity goodness of fresh hops.

M: Mouthfeel is pretty thick and mollasses like, almost oily. Pretty heavy as it goes down the gullet---nice!

D: This is a very drinkable beer. It is well balanced--noticeably heavy with the malts but also hoppy with the taste of fruit at the end. Definately would have a bunch of these if they made them in sixers.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4.42/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a snifter)

A- This beer pours an inky black body that is opaque with no sign of carbonation. The head is a dark creamy brown head that last for a bit and then turns into a thin film.

S- The smell of deep roasted grain has an earthy, coffee hint to it with a slight sweet creamy hint. The finish has a nice green floral hop note to it.

T- This beer has lots of dark malt layers. Notes of graham cracker and roasted barley blend with some molasses and prune/raisin hints. The finish has a nice hop bitterness that is enhanced by a faint alcohol hint.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with some slippery texture. No alcohol warmth or overt fizz.

D- This beer has lots of nice dark malt flavors and aromas. It is very smooth and the hops are really nice balance of the not-to-sweet-not-to-dry body.

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Photo of bighoppymonster
4.21/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pitch black. Absolutely no light is escaping from this black hole of a beer. Dark tan thick head is slow to form -- overflowed from my glass as I was pouring over my dinner. Laces the glass nicely. Smells of roasted malts and alcohol with some light traces of alcohol. Tastes of dark chocolate and coffee up front followed by roasted malt. Some nice oily hopiness rounds it out to complete the taste. Alcohol not as prevelent as I thought it would be, which is a nice surprise. Overall one hell of an Impy Stout. One of the best I've had. Nicely complex and very stout in both character and strength, I highly recommend this one.

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Photo of Derek
3.71/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Jet black with a tan head. Nice lace.

S: Not a lot of odour. Mainly hop bitterness.

T: Bittersweet. Dark caramel, a little tar, plenty of american hop bitterness.

M: Very syrupy, slightly oily, full body, moderate carbonation.

The oak-aged version is smoother, with considerably more depth. This one's a good double stout, but not great.

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Photo of Foxman
4.65/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It came to be a raven haired beauty, black as night and impermeable by any light, devoid of any ebon detail. Two fingers of cocoa brown head sat creamily and stubbornly atop the glass. Tawny loops of lacing played about the inside of the glass.

The aroma preceded the beer, and swelled as I brought it closer, driving currents of dark roasted malt and dark fruits and deep floral hops noseward. A note of soy flirted a bit amid swirls of coffee and chocolate and alcohol, and even a smidge of licorice.

Upon tasting, the bittersweet signature of roasted grain clambered in, toting waves of coffee and cocoa, earthy tones of cherry and sloe, and the very upfront presence of King Alcohol. The first onslaught ebbs to a more diverse middle, rife with continued fruit and coffee and alcohol, some overall air of spiciness, and accompanied by a more vinous character and the perfume of hops. The finish dries quickly, leaving the hops on stage to linger for some time. It sends waves of flavor in, but subtly so, blended in a bold but nuanced fashion.

Heavy bodied, it's a wonderfully essenced oil, slick and spicy, with a lingering glow that evokes a likewise lingering grin.

It's a subtle brute, and I mean that in the nicest possible way. It's complex, big, bold, brash, and brave, but it never loses it's subtlety. Everything is there for you to taste and experience, should you care to take note, or you can simply sip it slow and bask in its glory. The ABV is a potent creature, and it will lay you open if you let it, but never once does it get out of sync with the rest of the beer. There's no taming this one, but that feral but sublime nature is what makes it as good as it is, so sit back, relax, and immerse yourself. Done cautiously, I would think there could be no regrets.

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Photo of zjungleist
4.32/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Wow. I need to redefine what I consider a black beer. This is BLACK beer. It is black as it moves from bottle to glass. The head is very heavy, short and somewhat mottled, with lighter creamy and cocoa colored spots. It stains the glass like none other. The smell is incredibly complex. Chocolate malt, hops, dark fruits, alcohol, and a few I can't quite put a finger on. The taste is not as heavy as I expected, but still quite weighty. Lots of chocolate flavors up front, some quite bitter hops, a little coffee mixed in with the hop flavors, other malty flavors, floral and herbal hops, and a little rubbing alcohol. It has an extremely complex and long lasting in flavor and aftertaste. The mouth feel is really thick, like somewhere between eggnog, motor oil, and hot cocoa. There is not much carbonation to offset this, but it is not terribly cloying. I do recommend a square or two of chocolate to finish the last third of the bottle, just to give the palate a break. This is surprisingly drinkable, and highly recommended.

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Yeti Imperial Stout from Great Divide Brewing Company
4.22 out of 5 based on 5,345 ratings.
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