Tactical Nuclear Penguin
BrewDog

Tactical Nuclear PenguinTactical Nuclear Penguin
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Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
Style:
American Imperial Stout
Ranked #2,013
ABV:
32%
Score:
84
Ranked #39,646
Avg:
3.64 | pDev: 21.15%
Reviews:
132
Ratings:
337
From:
BrewDog
 
Scotland, United Kingdom
Avail:
Rotating
Wants
  265
Gots
  98
SCORE
84
Good
Tactical Nuclear PenguinTactical Nuclear Penguin
Notes: Made by freezing Paradox to remove water.
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Reviews: 132 | Ratings: 337
Reviews by Tricerahops:
Photo of Tricerahops
3.25/5  rDev -10.7%

More User Reviews:
Photo of TequilaTom
2.72/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Ok, this is a love hate relationship here. Kudos to my friend Brandon for inviting me to taste not only this beer, but also Sink The Bismarck and Dogfish Head 120!!!!
I am eternally grateful that I had the honor to try this, but I have to be honest, I wouldn't seek this out. It pours a dark brown with zero carbonation. Smells smoky, malty and boozy. This is a sipper for sure. Tastes of peat smoke and heavy malt once the alcohol burn settles down. I preferred this over the Sink the Bismarck. Was a novelty for the most part. While I am happy to be among the rare few that have tried this, My advice is to do what we did, split the cost amongst 10 or so people because a 1 or 2 oz pour was all that I would want.

 715 characters

Photo of largadeer
1.6/5  rDev -56%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Thanks for sharing this, Nick. My curiosity has been sated.

Dark mahogany brown in the glass, not quite black; on the light side for the world's strongest stout. It pours with surprising life, an inch of light tan head topping the amber body, though it quickly dissipates entirely. Swirling reveals thick, syrupy legs not unlike a spirit or liqueur.

It smells intensely of alcohol, peat, oak, faint roast - a hell of a lot like scotch. The alcohol is punchy and plainly noticeable, but not as stinging as I was expecting. That being said, there isn't much to this beyond peat and alcohol. It's simple and unimpressive.

On the palate it's much more harsh and boozy, with flavors of smoke, peat and a touch of oak. Not terribly sweet, just brutally strong. Tarry, ashy, ridiculously alcoholic and stinging. The body is somewhat full, but not as viscous as you would expect from a beer this big. I don't get much complexity from this, and it could really use more sweetness to balance the alcohol. More anything, really - it's lacking the depth of flavor you'd get from a good Scotch. It finishes harsh and solventy, like a charcoal and nailpolish remover cocktail. Have I mentioned that this is harsh? Holy fuck, what a trainwreck.

 1,232 characters

Photo of thatisgrossman
4/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of ffejherb
1.19/5  rDev -67.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Thanks to dpuia for sharing a 375ml bottle of this hyped-up beer on 2/1/11. Let's see how this turns out...

A - Emerged from the bottle as a menacing reddish brown murky mess with no head or carbonation, but plenty of oozy "leggings" (aka clear lacing) all over the glass.

S - Aroma is not appetizing at all. AT ALL. Some things that come to mind? Here's a list: beef jerky, dog treats, soy sauce, wet dog food and old shoes. Wow. I am afraid to put this in my mouth!

T - Oh my God! This is literally alcoholic soy sauce, or even moreso akin to Worcestershire sauce with rancid meat. TNP exhibits perpetual alcohol burn on the palate. Awful, or as the British might say... dreadful! I wish I could give this score a "zero". This is dis-freakin'-gusting!

M - Medium bodied with an oily, slick texture. Alcohol burn is akin to rubbing alcohol.

D - This beer had me longing for a Bud Chelada chaser! We saved this for the last beer of the night, and we actually had to drink something else (AleSmith Decadence) to get the flavor off our palates. To quote Bubbles: "You can barely get 'er in ya, but my fuck it'll get you some drunk!"

Brewslut's Quote of the Day:
"It smells like a box of old shoes."

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Photo of KentMills
4.39/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I bought this hard to acquire beer at Bacchanalia in Cambridge, England.

It poured as black and thick as used oil with a lovely brown head.

It smelled at first like alcohol, but turned into hints of chocolate and raisin as it breathed.

The taste was a mind grenade for me. I assumed a world record setter for alcohol couldn't have flavor, but my mouth was flooded with dark cherry, chocolate and molasses. Amazing!

It's sad I may never get to try this beer again, but at least there are some annually released imperial stouts that are this good, though still not very easy to get.

 584 characters

Photo of headlessclown
3.4/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

330ml bottle (small amount) poured into a snifter glass then stoppered
Date on bottle: 02-12-20
Batch number: 010

A: Pours medium brown, no head, no lacing, no sign of life. If this is a stout I'm not seeing it.

S: A word of warning - do not stick your nose in the glass; waft the thing or you'll get a faceful of BOOM. Intensely alcoholic for a beer. Almost medicinal. A little too intense for my liking. Something that is more akin to a spirit than a beer, which I guess at 32% makes some sense, but it also means that it overpowers everything else. There is a hint of roasted malt and maybe a bit of sweetness at it warms up.

T: This is where it gets interesting. Drink it too fast and all you'll get is alcohol burn, but let it linger for a while in your mouth and you'll get a bit more. Very dark, roasted, smokey (almost burnt) malts late in the middle and a hint of vanilla disguised in the alcohol burn backend.

M: Some definite alcohol burn (can't be avoided, I suppose) but smooth drinking otherwise. No carbonation whatsoever.

D: Overall, it's an interesting one. Is it a beer? Is it a spirit? Is it a hybrid? I'm inclined to say it's more towards spirit than beer, but it's not necessarily a bad one. The best comparison would probably be brandy. Whilst the look, aroma, and mouthfeel all scream spirit, the taste shows more complexity and differentiates it from both beer and spirits. It's perhaps a bit clumsily balanced, but that's to be expected from such a radical experiment. It's expensive but it's at least worth a try for the uniqueness - share the damage between a few friends! Definitely not sessionable, quite the opposite - the stopper is there for a reason - a small tipple should do for a taste.

 1,727 characters

Photo of TubaDan
4.5/5  rDev +23.6%

Photo of markgugs
3/5  rDev -17.6%

Photo of HookemHops13
4/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of ithinkimasofa
4/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of earljones199
3.83/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Taste is dry walnuts. Booze is comes out as a slow warming as it goes down. I get a little bit of licorice but not as much as the dry walnut flavor. I enjoyed this one but can't imagine taking it on solo.

 204 characters

Photo of t0rin0
3/5  rDev -17.6%

Photo of BAsbill
3/5  rDev -17.6%

Photo of gboyd
4.2/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Split 6 ways from a bottle with friends.

Appearance - a great dark amber scotch or tawny port. Very little to no effervescence.

Smell - Super boozy. Burnt wood & smoke. Almost tannic.

Taste - A lot going on here. Tannins, leather, czech licorice, tobacco, smoke, charred wood, maple, huge whisky & salt.

Mouthfeel - Uber heavy due to lack of carbonation & hot due to the high alcohol. A long & lingering finish full of black walnut, with more salt and tannin that sits on the back of your palate and waits and waits and waits...

Drinkability - I would love to see this sampled by someone who's beer of choice is that beer that uses the word "drinkability" in their most recent marketing...HA! This was a fun beer to share with some good friends. I would need to take my time to enjoy a full glass of this, but would definitely enjoy the changes this beer would go through from start to finish.

 899 characters

Photo of JGam115
2.52/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Oh. Oh my. OMG. Ugh. Bacon, whiskey booze hurt with soy.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.1/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I've had this on a couple of occasions, but never really sat down to review this, until now.
This pours a thick black with the viscosity of motor oil only darker. A vigorous pour produced hints of a head that disappeared almost instantly. Smells of roast and chocolate a little bit, but really this is an overwhelming scotch and peat bomb. Lots of higher alcohol and that smoky peaty aroma that you get from a scotch is amplified from the freezing process. The taste does have some stout attributes, roast, caramel and fruit, but those are buried deep beneath the onslaught of smoked peat moss. Thick body, light level of carbonation, burning sweet smokey mouthfeel. In small quantities this is a fine nightcap, albeit a bit rough. I'm glad I got to try this, but wouldn't seek it out again.

 791 characters

Photo of haknort
4/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of alamode
4/5  rDev +9.9%

Photo of JohnnyWoodchuck
5/5  rDev +37.4%

Photo of norwayjose
4.5/5  rDev +23.6%

Photo of simoen
4.72/5  rDev +29.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

way muth better than sink the bismarck

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Photo of OWSLEY069
2.98/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a deep amber color with no head. In the aroma, bacon and nail polish remover is all I can smell. In the taste, Nail polish remover, coffee, and molasses. A small bite from alcohol and a medium bodied mouthfeel, with a small dry nail polish remover with notes of caramel and coffee in the aftertaste. Too boozy! The nail polish remover essence was a bit too much for me.

 375 characters

Photo of IWannaEatFood
3/5  rDev -17.6%

Photo of pwsoldier
3.37/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served room temp in a Utopia glass.

A - Pours deep mahogany. Very nice color, but unusual for a beer that was a stout at one time in its existence. No signs of carbonation, as expected.

S - Maple-like sweetness is the most dominant aroma, which I wasn't expecting. Nice though. A strong peat character (fully expected) comes through as well, accompanied by notes of brown sugar, raisins, and wood.

T - Simultaneously sweet and smoky on the palate. A bit of maple and brown sugar help to calm down a very smoky center. Some people have compared this to drinking out of an ashtray. While I don't completely agree, I can see where they're coming from. The smoke is pretty harsh, almost like the taste you get when smoking a cigarette (not the same as licking an ashtray). As a former smoker, I'm not entirely put-off by this, though I can't say it's a pleasant smoke profile either.

M - Syrupy and a bit heavy, as expected. No carbonation, as previously mentioned. Aftertaste is reminiscent of cigarette smoke.

O - I can see why many people hate this beer. As I mentioned, I think the fact that I'm a former smoker helped blunt some of the negative aspects. I'm also wondering how many people tried this cold or chilled. It was very tolerable at room temp, but I can see how chilling it would make it unpalatable. Personally, I found it to be a bit one-dimensional, but decent overall. I'm glad I got to try it. Not so happy about how much I paid though.

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Tactical Nuclear Penguin from BrewDog
Beer rating: 84 out of 100 with 337 ratings