BrewDog Paradox Isle Of Arran (Batch 016) | BrewDog

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BrewDog Paradox Isle Of Arran (Batch 016)BrewDog Paradox Isle Of Arran (Batch 016)
Very Good
279 Ratings
BrewDog Paradox Isle Of Arran (Batch 016)BrewDog Paradox Isle Of Arran (Batch 016)

Brewed by:
Scotland, United Kingdom

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Phyl21ca on 12-21-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 279 |  Reviews: 185
Photo of Beerenauslese
4.16/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours leaving no head, resulting in a clear-topped, dark brown translucent liquid.
Very appealing nose of dried dark fruits, raisins, prunes, dark chocolate, strong vanilla, and some leather too.
Chocolate, fruit, and vanilla comes through, along with the whiskey and a high alcohol presence. A bit of cinnamon in the finish.
The mouthfeel is disappointing, rather flat and light.
A drink that might pair with an xmas pudding.

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Photo of PartyBear
4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed on: 08-16-2009 22:01:48

A - Pitch black in colour, with a small head that fades fast, leaving no head at all. Without the head it kinda looks like a glass of flat coke. Shame.

S - Metallic smelling malts come through strong, with liquorish undertones. Hints of coffee, with a slight earthy quality. An oaky alcohol is very clear too.

T - Massive smokey flavours right from the outset. Woody alcohol combined with a brutally dark sweetness. There are hints of fruit, possibly blackberries, but a peaty smokiness dominates.

M - Full bodied, still and oily.

D - The appearance was a real let down, as I was expecting more. The aromas and the flavours are incredibly complex, and there is obvious hidden depth to it. The whiskey barrel aging is clear, delivering a smokey punch. This is my first Paradox by BrewDog, and I will damn sure be looking into the others.

Re-Reviewed on: 10-20-2009

Appearance: Same as last time but the head is a creamy tan, last time I poured badly, and didn't swirl. So, it actually look incredibly appealing.

Aroma: Lots of oaky wood, and an intense peatiness worthy of a quality single malt whisky. There is a massive hit of espresso, and a very dark bitter chocolate.

Taste: Pretty much the same as above but just add more peat and complex whiskiness.

Mouthfeel: Still very full bodied although maybe more slick than oily this time around.

Drinkability: I greatly underestimated this beer the last time around so I felt it right to correct myself. So incredibly complex and dense, the aging in the Arran casks infuses lots of smokey peat, and makes this an amazing experience. I would love to try the base imperial stout without the cask aging.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.83/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Stone last night.

A: Black with a thin mocha colored foam.

S: Coffee, licorice, woody, smoke, slight chocolate and whiskey.

T: Smokey, roasted malt, licorice, a bit of chocolate and not too much whiskey flavor.

M: Lighter on the tongue than I was expecting, and kind of flat.

D: Certainly tasty and not overpowering in any sense.

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Photo of GRG1313
3/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Pours black with a thin light tan head. Some maple, molasses and whisky in the nose.

Full sweet coffee/licorice/whiskey flavors. Unfortunately, literally no carbonation whatsoever and very uninviting.

Flat, dull and lacking in character all around. Love this beer in the bottle. The draft was very disappointing.

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Photo of champ103
3.52/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours a pitch black color. At first a one finger tan head forms and recedes to a ring. Some sticky lace is left behind.
S: Smoky, dry wood at first. Sweet caramel and toffee. Some coffee and alcohol as well.
T: Sweet malt with caramel and toffee. Not nearly as much smoke or wood that was in the nose. Really kind of bland overall. Alcohol is powerful though.
M/D: A medium body that is low on the carbonation end. Kind of light and watery for the style. This burns the throat a little as I sip this.

Not bad, but nothing really special. I was kind of disappointed with this. Worth a try, but there are much better stouts out there.

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Photo of HisDorian
4.18/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found at Hyde Park Wine and Spirits, in Cincinnati.

Shared with a buddy I work with.

Very dark with no head or carbonation. Looked like Jagermeister, maybe even a bit darker.

Not much of a smell to this brew. The nose may have been hurt by the glassware. Poured into 4 5oz tumblers to share with friends.

First sip, SMOKEY. Almost overwhelming. Took us by surprise. But the more we sipped on it, and let it warm up, that flavor fell in the background.

As the beer warmed, more flavors came out. A very slight nuttiness with chocolate, vanilla, and caramel.

It was actually a fairly "thin" consistency. Not quite what I was expecting. Thought it would be a little more chewy.

I could probably drink another one of these, but not at the $11/bottle price tag. Glad I tried it once, now time to move on.

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Photo of Gmann
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a near black color with a little tan colored head that quickly disipated into a very light ring. The aroma is of expresso and mocha, dark chocolate and plums. A nice solid aroma. The taste is similar to the aroma. Strong dark chocolate flavor with notes of vanilla, bitter black coffee and a touch of wood. Some dark fruit notes as well. The feel is moderate to thick but feels a bit thin for the style. Very low carbonation leads to a smooth silky feel. A nice flavorful stout. I would like to see some more carbonation to give the brew a bit more life. Good but not sure worth the $13 price tag.

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Photo of SkeeterHawk
4.04/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a dark almost black-brown beer with a very small head of tan bubbles on top that faded quickly into just a bit of lacing on the glass from where I swirled it. The beer stays pretty still after the pour.

Aroma: I initially got lots of woody, vanilla, whiskey, even some chocolate notes in the aroma in the beginning and this beer is cold. I don't really get much of the 10% ABV in the nose except as a pepper that I almost perceive as being the whiskey notes from the barrel.

Taste: The body is thinner than I suspected from the depth of the aroma. I get the wood and chocolate as plain as anything and overall the beer is really clean with complementary flavors introduced by the wood aging...such as vanilla, etc. The finish is also pretty thin with some subtle warming from the alcohol and there is a mild dry wood thing that I notice on the back of the throat that appears a swallow after the sip...weird.

Opinion: This beer is leaps and bounds better than their Storm IPA, and I am glad that I bought them both at the same time because if the Storm was my only impression of the brewery...I may not have tried any more of their beer. This comes across a bit thin overall, but the complexity makes it a pleasure to drink nonetheless. I would drink this beer again...especially if it were more reasonably priced.

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Photo of wagenvolks
3.19/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A very expensive, gorgeous 11.2 oz bottle served in a snifter; best before 08/08/10.

A rather unimpressive debut--pours with a translucent cola body and fails to gather much more than a few big bubbles at first. Slowly, a wispy patch of beige foam forms atop an inky black body. Still, I like my Imperial Stouts to have a much larger head than this. Nice aroma, though nothing exorbitant given the style and price tag. Whiskey barrels dominate, adding a hefty vanilla bean sweetness across a backdrop of milk chocolate and caramel malts.

The flavor starts well with a gentle dark chocolate note that lends itself to a hint of spice and whiskey booze on the finish. Soft kiss of earthen hops and Baker's chocolate seals the deal. Call my palate endemic to American Imperial Stouts, but the flavors on this brew taste a bit underwhelming, dog. Mouthfeel is watery and severely under-carbonated...quite distressing given the dough I shelled out for this one. Overall, a big pass--it's a shame too, because I had high hopes for this heavily touted Scottish brewery.

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Photo of dborginis
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

10 oz pour at Devil's Den. The smell jumps out at first, it is of dark malts, can't wait to taste. Appearance is coffee black, with 1 mm tan/milk chocolate colored head . Taste, coffee, malt, but mostly malt and a little chocolate. Very smooth. Alcohol is minimal in the taste! Drinkablity is moderate due to thickness. A tasty beer, some Imperial stouts catch me off guard with too much bitter or carbonation, this is a smooth dessert!

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Photo of hopdog
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.2oz bottle. Batch 16, best before 08/09/10.

Poured a dark and deep brown color wtih a very small sized off white head. Aromas of woodiness, some chocolate, and earthy. Tastes of wood, chocolate, some whiskey, and lighter vanilla. Softer all the way around compared to the Batch 17 I had before this.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.97/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours almost opaque with a very very thin tan head that falls to nothing quickly. Nose is one dimensional bourbon tones. Bourbon and vanilla and minor at that. Flavor comes off as the same really. Nice and thick and malty with a minor alcohol burn and booze tones to it. But there's no oomph. No kick. No big thing eliciting that wow factor. Feel is lower on carbonation. Liquid is thick. Overall a nice enough example of the style. Is it delivering interesting character from the barrels used to age it? I don't think so. But hey, that's the price of experimentation, right?

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Photo of mikedashg
3.72/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured a little watery into a pint glass at just below 53 degrees. Nice and pitch black, but very little head that dissipated quickly. Pretty sure it was a light tan. Was still writing about the color of the beer itself when the head disappeared.

S - Definitely a little malty, and a little whiskey here. followed by some roasted coffee.

T- Very similar to nose, although hints of chocolate with the coffee/malt/sweet whiskey alcohal.

M- Just as a I expected from the look of the viscosity on the pour. It was very light in the mouth. Too thin in my opinion, and also too low on the carbonation.

D- Not a session beer, but it was good. Not too sure I'd pick this one up again though, especially for the price. I really do like barrel aged beers, especial ones that pay tribute their Scotland land of where they are brewed (hence whiskey), and just in general whiskey. You don't see whiskey aged that often. Usually it's bourbon, brandy, or sometimes even wine. That's mostly why I picked it up. Plus I Was trying to convert a whiskey friend of mine. Although I think this one fell short in the complexity and mouth feel. Had it been a bit more carbonated, complex, and a bit thicker I probably would've rated it higher. It's not bad but any means, it's good, it's just not that great. It certainly was a nice warmer/sipper for the whiskey/ABV. It kind of grew on me in the end. But maybe that was the whiskey talking.

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Photo of Sammy
3.77/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle, thanks to Phy21ca. Pours black, modest white head. Fragrance is mollasses, coffee, chocolate, and whiskey. Taste is restrained whiskey and wood, even though expirey more than a year off. Smooth drinkability, above average thick body. A decent, though not outstanding IS.

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Photo of mattster
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Opened 11.2 fluid ounce bottle of batch 016 (BB 08/08/10) and poured into snifter.

Pours an impressive dark black opaque brew. There was no head on a gentle pour.

Nice smell of malts escapes the glass and fills the area; slight hint of whisky also fills the nose. Taste is typical chocolate/coffee taste with bits of baking spice and slight whisky taste. Nice full mouthfeel. I like this, but am not blown away by it to try it again, althought I'll be looking for other selections from BrewDog .

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Photo of Suds
4.14/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

My wife picked this beer out for us to try. It pours as an absolutely black color with a slightly tan head. The aroma is fantastic. It's full of chocolate, molasses, grist-like grain, and moderately roasted malt. There's also some highly roasted barley scents, but they're not prediminant. Smoke is there, but a little restrained, as is wood. The alcohol is definetly in the aroma. It's a boozey smell...think of smelling malted barley that's been soaked in scotch. The taste is very malty with some smoke and a restrained bitterness. It's thick and also quite sweet...reminds me of a good malted milkshake, actually. The highly roasted grains come out more in the flavor...a grain bitterness comes out more and more. Full and very mouthfilling body. The alcohol hits you quickly with this one. All around, this one is very good.

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Photo of tmoneyba
4.22/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from Hyde Park.

Poured a dark brown color with an average frothy brown head that mostly diminished and produced good lacing. Medium to heavy roasted malt and chocolate aroma. Full body with a smooth texture and flat carbonation. Good complex roasted sweet flavor with a medium to heavy roasted bittersweet finish of moderate to long duration.

Good complex brew.

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Photo of Brad007
3.89/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a motor-oil black color with a thin one-finger head into my glass.

Aroma is viscous with a strong hint of roasted coffee in the nose. Similar to their other imperial stout. Alcohol is present but it feels diluted.

Taste is full of roasted coffee, chocolate and dark fruits. The oak seems more present here.

Mouthfeel is full of oak, alcohol, roasted coffee and mild chocolate. It's not quite creamy but not rough either.

Drinkable, though by no means the best example of its' style. Worth a try.

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Photo of brushtachio
4.21/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nearly jetblack until held up to the light when hints of ruby shine through. Almost no head and minimal lacing. Doesn't pour as thick as you'd expect.

Smell is unexceptional but solid

Taste is quite good. Vanilla, wood, burnt coffee, mocha, over-ripe fruit, carmelized sugar. Plenty of warming from the high abv.

Mouthfeel is thin but despite the poor head, carbonation is acceptable.

Drinkability is higher than any stout I've had in recent memory. Absolutely counterintuitive considering how hot and boozy it is. If I was a moron with no regard for my own well being, I could pound several of these. Since I'm only slightly dense, I'll just have two in this sitting but come back to this if I can in the future.

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Photo of SFLpunk
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

11.2oz brown glass pry-top.

Appearance: Deep chocolate brown/black, virtually no head but tan bubbles.

Nose: Medium vanilla, medium toast, bittersweet chocolate, light-roast coffee, mossy notes, dried orange peel, grains.

Palate: Medium-bodied and immediate alcohol slick mouthfeel. Boozy but drier than the Port Dundas. Picked up some tannins from the wood. Medium roast coffee, bittersweet chocolate, vanilla/whiskey finish is drying.

Notes: Younger whisky barrels show here giving tannins and more vanilla character than the Port Dundas. Nicely done but alcohol up front is hard to ignore.

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Photo of Pehlman
3.56/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Had this brew on cask over at Beachwood BBQ with my buddy OlieIPA.

A - Pitch black with a light-tan, very foamy head. The contrast of the beer to the head reminded me of a less creamy dry Irish stout.

S - Very weak aroma. Maybe because of being on cask. From what I could smell there were mostly hints of roasted malts. Somewhere deep in there I believe I could smell a bit of chocolate.

T - Just like the smell but stronger. Had a boozey-sweet finish to it which was nice at first but got a bit cloying after a while.

M - Very smooth. Very creamy. Probably my favorite aspect of this beer. The only downside to the mouthfeel was a kind of foamy feeling left in the mouth afterward.

D - Could definitely have again but it would have to be on draft or out of a bottle. Definitely worth a try for anyone who can.

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Photo of OlieIPA
3.71/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed at Beachwood BBQ on cask and poured into a pub glass.

A: Appeared to have a light, delicate, and frothy looking head that sat on gently on this blackish looking Imperial Stout. As I held the glass up next to the light, I noticed hints of ruby-red or mahogany piercing through the glass. Upon finishing this beverage, I could still see the reminisce of this beer clinging to the walls of this once full-glass.

S: Not as pungent as I was expecting with subtle notes of dark malt mixed in with chocolate. Nothing too spectacular, but still enjoyable.

T: A bit boozy up front and in the tail end as well, this beer is a definite "winter warmer". Again, chocolate and coffee was present along with vanilla or perhaps a white-chocolate quality was a nice little addition to the flavor profile...which added a small amount of complexity. I also picked up a hop presence...weird, but good.

M: Since this was served on cask, the body wasn't as full as I was anticipating. Carbonation was just about right.

D: I thought this was a pretty good beer that was real easy to drink. On the other hand, it was a little boozy...which may have masked some of the flavors.

Overall: Pretty darn good. A try it beer. Cheers!

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Photo of gregmoscetti
3.93/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The burn of a scotch, the warmth of a stout.

This baby was booze heavy (weighing in at 10%) but it was the feeling that got me; The warmth of a glass of whiskey tracing your esophagus. Maybe the cask, maybe the scotch barrel, but it was a damn good beer. The only thing I was disappointed with (and i use that term as lightly as possible) was the drinkability. It would have taken me a while to polish off that baby. I would love to try it bottled. Maybe one day it will find me.

Great beer for an imperial stout enthusiast

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On cask at Beachwood BBQ,

A: Pours a very dark brown, tan cask head, lots of lacing.

S: Scotch is evident, more of a floral barrel character than with a bourbon barrel, sugary, peat.

T: The whisky really comes out more in the taste. Sweet molasses, iodine, sea water, with some roasted malt from the stout base. Intriguing and tasty flavour.

M: Low carbonation, smooth, no hint of the 10%.

D: A really nice imperial pint right here. Quite drinkable for its strength, it could certainly catch up on you in a hurry.

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Photo of chrisafari
4.35/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on cask at Stone World Brewing Bistro and Gardens

smell: deep roasted-malt, single malt scotch, cocoa.

pour: black opaque w/ thin off-white head.

flavor: begins smooth, roasted malt then the cocoa notes kick in, nice and smooth. Overall flavor of scotch and alcohol, mild enjoyable burn. Finish is dry with a hint of hops.

mouthfeel: light carbonation from the cask, smooth medium-heavy to heavy body. Mouthfeel is also somewhat oily, which was unexpected (might be the cask).

drinkability: very easy to drink for an imperial stout, the cocoa lingers in the throat and begs you to take another sip.

overall: really, really nice. One of the best Imperial stouts I've had. The Scotch barrels add a nice touch of scotch (nose and burn). It might have been better, however, if it wasn't on cask, the flavor might have been better served with some refrigeration.

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BrewDog Paradox Isle Of Arran (Batch 016) from BrewDog
Beer rating: 3.92 out of 5 with 279 ratings