BrewDog Paradox Speyside (Batch 010) - Smokehead | BrewDog

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BrewDog Paradox Speyside (Batch 010) - SmokeheadBrewDog Paradox Speyside (Batch 010) - Smokehead
42 Ratings
BrewDog Paradox Speyside (Batch 010) - SmokeheadBrewDog Paradox Speyside (Batch 010) - Smokehead

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 brewdlyhooked13 on 12-23-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 42 |  Reviews: 30
Reviews by Jesstyr:
Photo of Jesstyr
3.54/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Grabbed a glass of this off the cask at Churchkey in DC. Served in a snifter, this beer is about as unique as you can get, and seemed to have struck out in some ways. I've had this in bottle before, and much preferred it - likely because of the temperature in my opinion.

Pours a maroon brown, dark with reddish hues. Head is basically non-existent, but there is a tinge of lacing. Nose blows me away, blind this could be a peaty scotch, a very unique and enjoyable aspect of this brew.

Taste could be so much more to me, but beyond the overwhelmingly smoky character, this beer really lacks a lot of flavor. No sweetness, maltiness, etc - its like a beer scotch, but without the bite. Mouthfeel is actually a bit watery for the style and the drinkability is hindered by the lack of flavor combined with the higher abv.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of olradetbalder
3.75/5  rDev +7.4%

Photo of haddon
3.37/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

not off to a good start. the beer level barely made it to the neck of the bottle (>12 oz.) and no carbonation was released when I popped the cap.

dark cola color with no head and no lacing.

for a stout aged in scotch barrels, not much on the nose. malts, molasses, smoke & faint scotch. everything seems light. hope things improve or this was a $10 flop!

starts with dark chocolate, malts and then fades to burnt wood & peat. ends with bitter hops and scotch to give a not bad aftertaste. best part of the beer.

light body (almost watery) that's low on carbonation. again, strange for a very dark stout aged in scotch barrels.

drinkable? not really. glad I tried it? yes but would never go back to it for such a high price point. novel at best.

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Photo of GRG1313
4/5  rDev +14.6%

Photo of WillyMac
5/5  rDev +43.3%

Photo of jaydoc
3.5/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of ThaCreep
2.29/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Bottle and label high quality, gold and black. Black dark. Strong and persistent foam. On the nose, it smells the smoke and acrylic paint.

In the mouth, such as Tokyo *, in the same style and in the same brewery, it is difficult to perceive that it is an imperial stout because not thick, not strength, not roasted malt. No traces of whiskey either, so it makes sense to marinate. Finally, it was just a taste of the cigarette in the mouth and it's not really appetizing. The finish is reminiscent of barbecue ash and can be persistent, which suggests that foul taste in the throat.

Okay, that's unique in taste but should not exaggerate by suggesting anything like taste. To drink this drink as much juice banging a cigarette ash. Then where is the stout apart in color?

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Photo of mdwalsh
4.52/5  rDev +29.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I love working at a liqour store, had this for free.

A: Reddish brown/black. No active carbonation, no head. Looks like a well aged stout should.

S: Roasted malt, some cherry and other dark fruits. A little whiskey is evident. Yum.

T: Warm tasting. Some very mild roasted game tastes. A little bitter. Cooked fruit for sure. A definte whiskey after taste.

Mouthfeel is too light.

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Photo of TheHoppiest
3.73/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this on-tap as a cask-conditioned ale at the Beer Engine in Lakewood on 4/10/10.

Served warm in a snifter, this brew is black as night with a brown, bubbly head.

Smells of burnt firewood -- no, really, like burnt firewood, the same smell you smell on your clothes after hanging around a fire pit all night. How did they capture that smell in a beer?

Tastes like liquid smoke. It wouldn't surprise me if there was ash in here. Beyond the smokiness, there is faint malt smell, and enough hops to end it with some bitterness.

Mouthfeel is very smooth and rich.

Drinkable? Well, I finished it, and am glad I had it, especially on tap from a cask, as it seems to be a rare presentation for this beer. Would I have it again? It is expensive on tap or from the bottle, plus it is a little much. As such, I don't see me getting this again,

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Photo of potownbill
2.54/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Very Dark brown beer with a thin tan head that dissipates quickly, leaving a small amount of lacing.
Smell: First impression is the smell of burning brakes from a truck going down a steep incline.
Taste: Heavy smoked oak, like the inside of a newly charred whiskey barrel. Aftertaste lingers for a long time.
Mouthfeel: Little carbonation, but smooth.
Overall: Not a drainpour, but would not even be considered for a second chance.

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Photo of hopdog
3.95/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

11.2oz bottle. Batch 10 BB 01/01/10.

Poured a dark brown color with red edges and an averaged sized off white head. Aromas of wood, chocolate, a little earthy, roast, raisins, and some vanilla. Tastes of whiskey, vanilla, wood, chocolate, and dark fruits. Medium alcohol in the finish.

Notes from: 8/17/08

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Photo of TMoney2591
4.32/5  rDev +23.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

Big thanks to monsterzero for this bottle!

At VDubb's behest, I dive into another Paradox batch. This one, like the others, pours a straight obsidian, with a chapeau of short-lived brown bubbles floating on top. The nose has a strong whiskey bent, along with the necessary oak; these are joined by lesser notes of roasted malts, dark chocolate, a touch of smoke, and some brown sugar suspended in molasses. "How very nice!" my overtly proper (and apparently slightly effeminate) 'strils proclaim. The taste mirrors the smell, though the smoke lends itself more toward a blackened biscuit flavor. Like the other Paradoxes, this is a mighty tasty barrel-aged brew. The body is a firm heavy, with barely any carbonation and a smooth, nearly chewy feel. Another bit o' barrel-aged stouty goodness from those wacky Scots.

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Photo of avalon07
3.12/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a black color and a very thick texture. There was a small amount of foamy, tan-colored head, but that quickly dissipated. Not much lacing at all.

S: Once you open the bottle the whiskey smell hits you. It dominates the aroma, but there are traces of malt and coffee.

T: Tasted of malt, whiskey, and some coffee in the finish, but mainly this is a thin, watery beer with not much character. Very average.

M: An OK amount of carbonation with a slick finish. Medium-bodied.

D: A decidedly average beer.

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Photo of mattmarka1
3/5  rDev -14%

Photo of fatmcb1
3.87/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

09 vintage poured into a snifter. Barely below room temperature.

Pours black with brown along the edges. Half a finger of head that fades into a ring. Solid lacing along the glass.

Smell is more of bourbon than beer. It is incredibly smokey, reminiscent of when you use a charcoal grill.

Bourbon, oak flavor is very present. Still, plenty of smoke and barbecue. However, there is a lot of malt and chocolate in there to balance the flavors.

Carbonation is on the medium side for the style. It isn't terribly drinkable. I wouldn't want more than one in a sitting.

This beer is definitely "outrageous" as it says on the bottle. If it cost less than $10 per 11oz bottle, I could see myself drinking it again.

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Photo of amcmaho1
2.47/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I went into drinking this beer with very high hopes; despite the fact every Brewdog offering I've had so far has left my high hopes unfulfilled...

Appearance: For an "imperial stout," the appearance is quite misleading. The body maintains a dark brown to maroon color, with quite a bit of translucence which seems strange for the style. Pours with no head whatsoever, even after a rather vigorous pour, and carries no lacing either.

Smell: I opened the beer a bit under room temperature, anticipating to see it's transformation as it warmed. Initially, i picked up some strange astringent wood-glue characteristics along with some chocolate and peat aroma. As it continued to warm, hickory, black licorice and metallic aromas all worked with the overall smoke and peat aroma.

Taste: Smoke!!! I went in expecting this, and ended up finding a pretty unidimensional taste. For an imperial stout, albeit "whiskey cask matured," i got nothing taste-wise that excited me.

Mouthfeel: Dry and thin...

Drinkability: Well I tried it, and was let down. This beer seems quite unbalanced, and relatively undrinkable. For the eleven or twelve bucks I dished out on this, I could have found a superior barrel aged imperial stout.

Overall this beer was a letdown. I'm not going to give up on Brewdog because I like their philosophy and business model, i just simply haven't had a beer of theirs that I've liked yet...

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Photo of radioscooter
2.64/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Hits the glass black, soapy head. Not thick, quick to dissipate. Swirling leaves light syrup on glass. Smell is smoky campfire, peat, medicinal.

Gads. This could almost be a Rauchbier. Yeesh. What is up with this ashtray. I llove this brewery too. Gresh.

Two sips and its to the sink.

My bad for not believing the name. Think fireman's pants after a 3 alarm blaze, a pack of Marlboros, a campfire and burning tar on the road.

Cheers guys, this has to be someone's favorite style.

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Photo of chicagobeerriot
1.6/5  rDev -54.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I should start by saying that I enjoy a good whisky. The smoky flavor that comes from peat is something that I really enjoy. I also like smoky beers as long as there is some balance and complexity to it. Hopefully, that information provides some context when I review this unspeakable error of a beer.

The problems with Smokehead are evident before you take your first sip. It appears thin and clouded in the glass and the wall of smoke hits you before you even approach the rim with your nose. No other smells are allowed to shine. There is no complexity or subtlety here. Just an unrestrained wave of peat smoke.

Things get worse once you raise the glass to your lips. The smoke is not just overwhelming. It has an astringent chemical quality that made me wince. The mouthfeel is thin and no other stout flavors are allowed any space on the palate. No chocolate. No coffee. No anise. Nothing. It tastes like a five-alarm fire blazed through Brewdog's facility and - rather than accept their losses -- they sold the charred remains to the unsuspecting public.

I've had some of the whisky barrel aged beers that Brewdog has to offer and some are not bad. This, on the other hand, is a near-instant drainpour.

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Photo of brdc
3.89/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Small capped bottle poured into a snifter.

Nearly pitch black, small, short lasting tan head, minimal lacing.
Aroma is roasted grains, lightly, some chocolate, coffee, and a well balanced contribution from vanilla, whisky and wood notes.
It is unfortunately a bit thin for an imperial stout, but the flavors are well blended together, and quite nice, with bittersweet chocolate, coffee, vanilla, and whisky.
A little bit more body, and a better presentation would make this a stellar beer. Good as it is, but in this price range, not worth it.

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Photo of robhunta
3.68/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - one finger of tan brown foam, dissipate to a nice thin lacing covering the top of the beer. A black/dark brown color.

s - strong alcohol aromas, smokey.

T - alcohol, dark malt, woody, smokey flavor. nice complexity, a bit of coffee at the finish. the more I drink it the more i like it.

M - nice smooth, medium body, dryness.

D - at first i wasnt sure if i could finish the whole bottle, but halfway through it became quite drinkable I think partly due to the ABV and also because it took a bit for my palate to adjust to the very strong flavors.

Should go well with my buffalo wings that I'm about to pull out of the oven during the next commercial break of the SuperBowl...

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Photo of Hopstout
4.25/5  rDev +21.8%

Photo of AgentMunky
3.64/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into an Albemarle Ciderworks glass. Batch 010. Best by 01 January 2010. So two years late on this one.

A: Some bubbles; no head. It pours thinly. The not-quite black body is unexpectedly translucent, but only just.

S: It smells good. Strong and liquor-like, the whisky influence is obvious. Such sweet elixir! Little to no smoke.

T/M: Thin (old?) but perfectly palatable. An almost creamy sweetness fades slowly into a more noticeably smoky finish. Malt-heavy, with a touch of oaky dryness. Light, chalky, roasted bitterness on the aftertaste reminds me of dark chocolate. The mouthfeel isn't exactly thin as...flat? Insubstantial? It's the most disappointing facet of this Paradox, but I suppose my fair dues for being so late to the party.

O: Overall, a good beer that hasn't aged remarkably well. Increasingly whiskyish as I drink more of it, especially the finish. Very bourbon sweet-strong. I wouldn't go out and buy one again, but I'm glad I had one and the price ($3.49) seems reasonable. I still like BrewDog.

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Photo of DoctorB2B
5/5  rDev +43.3%

Photo of scruffwhor
2.7/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Batch 010. Best before date 12/12/09.

Pours a thick, brownie brown colro with some bloody garnet highlights. No head or foam. Thick, dark, and syrupy chocolate. This thins out a little with some alcoholic black walnut. The taste is a watered down, nutty chocolate with a cheap alcohol an hard water aftertaste. Alcoholic and metallic tinge. Maybe some peety smoke at the finished that gets mixed with, then overpowered by the alcohol. Definitely a sippr, but hard to finish my 11.2 oz. bottle.

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Photo of JAHMUR
4.5/5  rDev +28.9%

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BrewDog Paradox Speyside (Batch 010) - Smokehead from BrewDog
Beer rating: 3.49 out of 5 with 42 ratings