Blackbeerd Imperial Stout | COAST Brewing Company

very good
152 Reviews
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Blackbeerd Imperial StoutBlackbeerd Imperial Stout

Brewed by:
COAST Brewing Company
South Carolina, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.30%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
As dark as the legend of Blackbeerd himself, behold the Imperial Stout. Sweet malts battle roasted grain on the decks of yer tongue. Like a blast from a cannon, hop are followed by smoked malt. Hold on to yer booty, a dark stouts a brewin'.

Added by MarkSCCOT on 12-08-2007

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Reviews: 152 | Ratings: 347
Photo of Alieniloquium
3.55/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

650 mL bottle poured into a taster. Bottled 12/21/2011. Reviewed from notes.

Appearance - Black, but not inky. Small brown head and a little lacing.

Smell - Chocolate predominantly. Hops come through after with a smokey aroma that I didn't expect. Sweet smelling, too.

Taste - Chocolate dark roasted malts. Loads of hops. Sweet with a licorice taste. Bitter finish and rather thin. Not the most interesting RIS.

Mouthfeel - Thin, high carbonation. Missing a depth of flavor and a chewiness.

Overall - I expected more. Decent, but disappointing. Nothing offensive, but just an average RIS.

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Photo of mltobin
3.83/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This bottle was split amongst few BAs, it pours a black color with a tan head. Its` nose has chocolate, dark fruit and alcohol. Sipping on this and I taste dark chocolate, roasted malts, prunes and brown sugar. Mouthfeel is medium, a soft carbonation to it. All in all, a good RIS from these brewery out of South Carolina. Glad that I finally got to try this one !

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

Bottled on 12/21/10; consumed February 2012

A - pours black with a nice head

S - grainy malts with notes of chocolate lift out of the beer

T - lots of dark chocolates are upfront that move to some grainy malts. Much as it begins, it ends with dark chocolates.

M - medium feel with decent carbonation

D - Not the craziest representation of this style, but this is a pretty nice RIS with lots of chocolate flavors. I don't think this is worth the beers it demands, but definitely worth a shot if you can get your hands on it.

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Photo of woosterbill
4.15/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber, bottled 2/23/10, into a 25cl Duvel tulip. Shared at a tasting alongside the 2011 BA version. Thanks to taylorhamrick for trading me this one a long, long time ago.

A: Black body with a finger of dense light-brown head. Good retention, nice lace. Excellent.

S: Lovely, balanced, roasty aroma: bitter dark chocolate, dark roast coffee, and some straight malty goodness. Bitter and wonderful.

T: All the roasty goodness of the nose, with some sweetness up front and heavy bitterness behind. Dark chocolate and coffee on the long, intensely bitter finish. Very, very tasty.

M: A little thinner than most RISs, but very creamy and well-carbonated. Enjoyable.

O: I honestly wasn't expecting too much out of this one (aged stouts aren't really my thing - this one slipped my mind for a couple years), but it was a terrific surprise. The flavors were intense and well-integrated, and in no way musty or dulled by time. Great stuff.


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Photo of prototypic
3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2010 Release

Many, many thanks to kkipple for this one!

Blackbeerd pours a dark, chocolate fudge color. It’s nearly opaque. There are a few burgundy highlights at the outermost edges. It’s topped with a light tan head that rises to roughly a finger in height. Retention was good. It held firm there for a bit. Lacing was rather sticky and thick as it trailed down the glass. Looks good.

The nose is good. It kicks off with a nice mix of chocolate and roasted malts. The roasted variety seems to be the stronger of the two. Chocolate leans toward the bittersweet side. There’s a hint of sweetness, but not much. Roasted coffee or espresso follows quickly and complements the malts nicely. Secondary scents include molasses, a smoked or charred scent, and a little alcohol. The alcohol doesn’t come through too strong though. It’s integrated nicely over the last couple of years.

The flavor is quite good. Definitely impressive. Roasted and chocolate malts anchor things nicely. Bittersweet dark chocolate is nice and flavorful, but the roasted variety overpowers it in the end. Roasted coffee is rather pronounced. There’s a bit of a smoked or charred flavor that could be attributable to the coffee. Tough to say. It’s tasty in any case. There is a bit of molasses and very subtle dark fruit on the tail. Alcohol is there, but isn’t too strong. It has integrated nicely. Finishes roasty with a smoky or burnt twist.

Blackbeerd has a medium body. It feels a little more substantial as it warms a tad, but it’s ultimately too thin. Carbonation is light and soft, but it needs more body to feel svelte and smooth. Nevertheless, it goes down pretty easy.

Coast Brewing Company never fails to deliver (at least not yet). Blackbeerd Imperial Stout is tasty! It’s only real shortcoming is its body. I suspect a bit more in the malts department might bump it up a notch all around. It’s still quite flavorful and enjoyable as it is. Definitely worth checking out. Thanks a ton, Dan!

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Photo of xnicknj
3.9/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle poured into snifter - 2010 vintage - thanks to CarolinaKevin

Pours an opaque blacked out color with a fluffy beige head resting on top. Fades slowly into a cloudy layer of film, leaving webbed patches of lacing on the glass.

Plenty of roasted dark malts in the nose, coupled with a dash of dark fruit. Hints of dates and anise with some dark chocolate. Faint bitterness and warmth.

Some touches of dark fruit and sweetness up front. A wealth of dark malt and roasty tones, which is swirled with the raisin and anise flavors. The licorice isn't out of control, and adds a nice flavor to the finish. Burly malt backbone holds everything together. A little warm towards the end.

Fuller body, slightly milder carbonation, creamy and slick on the tongue. A nice drinking imperial stout with plenty of flavor - I'd drink this again but I doubt I'd go crazy trying to trade for it.

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Photo of Jpwv
4.09/5  rDev +2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on date: 02-23-10 (almost 2 years)

A- standard looking stout. Dark brown almost black. Light brown colored head.

S- sweet caramel malt some dark chocolate

T- starts sweet caramel, dark bitter chocolate, ends with a roasty coffee. Makes me think of a Reisen or dark chocolate Milk Dud with a coffee bean in the middle.

M- low end of medium mouthfeel. Nothing special here but not watery by any means.

O- solid stout. The more I drank the more I enjoyed it. Worth trying if you have not had it. Would definitely try again if given the opportunity.

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Photo of spdyfire83
3.95/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

41st Review
750 ml bottle to snifter.

From notes. Thanks to whomever brought this to the DL Variant Tasting in Chicago back in October.

A: Opaque. Dense. Black. Thin head on vigorous pour.

S: Earthy and peppery (green, not black). Big roasted malt character with hint of cocoa powder and dark fruit. Booze tickles the nose.

T: Smoked, charred, robust. Balance of vanilla and chocolate with bold presence of coffee/espresso. Very roasty.

M: Thin, but well carbonated. Looong finish. I was expecting a thicker feel based on appearance, but it is not that big.

O: A very roasty and well-done Russian Imperial Stout, be honest...I have had better. Nothing too memorable about it, but easy drinking.

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Photo of AleWatcher
3.97/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes--

Pours pretty watery looking. Black, with hints of red. Doesn't look 'bad,' but doesn't wow me either. Decent retention, decent lacing.
The nose is really roasty-- like roasty roasty roasty malts. Chocolate malts almost come off as smokey in the flavor. It works well though.

The body is good-- firm and pretty full. Good carbonation level.

Solid drinkability. Overall, this is a respectable beer here.

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Photo of aasher
3.7/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This bottle was courtesy of thagr81us in a recent reader and shared at Joe's annual tasting. It pours a nice dark, dark brown in color with a slight beige lacing around the glass. It has a nice roasty sweetness and is fairly.aromatic. It tastes of roasted malts with bitter chocolates and a slight roasted malt sweetness. It drinks ok and is a nice drinker but it isn't anything crazy. The consensus is that this is a very nice beer but nothing spectacular. Solid beer, as usual by COAST.

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Photo of Florida9
3.91/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Black. Forms a thin, but relatively stable deep dark tan head. No lacing.

S: Smell is intense with notes of char, ash, and chalk. Slightly medicinal, with indications of dark fruit, and even a little vegetal at times, all mixed with a noticeable alcoholic booziness.

T: Pretty good tasting. Heavily roasted malts and lots of them. Beyond toasted malts, slight smoke quality, and char. There is a very light sweetness as well as a mix of coffee/espresso/spent coffee grains.

M: This is a heavy, full bodied beer. Chalky, grainy with a charred malt bitterness. Appropriate carbonation.

O: A good RIS. Tasty, roasty, and heavy with lots of in-your-face char/ash/borderline burnt flavors.

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Photo of billshmeinke
3.44/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Cigar City snifter.

Pours pitch black with a quarter inch of beige head. Retention is ok, lacing is minimal.

Dusty cocoa, and some dark fruits. The nose is pretty boring though. Can't smell much at all.

Taste of black currants, raspberry juice, a bit of chocolate, and then a bitter and roast driven finish. The raspberry flavor is the most apparent, a bit weird, but good.

The mouthfeel is a bit light for the style. Well carbonated to the point of almost being dry.

This is a bit weird for a RIS. Mouthfeel is super light and the raspberry flavor is super distinct. It's weird, but it's not bad, just quite different from most other RIS's.

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Photo of MbpBugeye
3.83/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A long time want shared by Ryan011235. This was supposed to be drank along side Sexual Chocolate for our Southern Tickspitality, but plans changed. Bottle dated 06/15/10 poured into a Darkness glass.

Inky black with a tall, sticky head. The beer doesn't look super thick, but it sure is black.

There is a lot of ash, char and smoke. This is a burnt, charcoaly stout. Some dark fruits are there, but even they are burnt. Bittersweet cocoa smells powdery and ashy as well. There is a slight alcohol presence that make me think of hairspray or aerosol.

As the nose suggested, there is a lot of char and ash. Fruits try to push through, providing a backdrop of sharp black cherry and fig. Brown sugar or molasses notes come around with the sweeter flavors. There is a woody, chalky and ashy finish.

Low carbonation. The body is full yet delicate. The finish is dry, but an ashy char flavor lingers. Alcohol warms this beer slightly.

A solid stout to be sure, but it seems to get a little one dimensional, focusing solely on a dry, powdery, ashy profile.

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Photo of johnnnniee
4.39/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on 12/09/2008
Received in trade form brentk56, thanks for the opportunity!
Pours a solid black color with a decent sized fluffy tan head that shows moderate retention. This smells incredible from the moment I pop the cap until I stick the bottle in the recycle bin. Dark fruits, caramel, licorice, chocolate, hints of smoke, its all in here. Little to no hop presence in the aroma. Taste is caramel and chocolate up front, licorice, dark fruit and faint hints of alcohol and hop deep underneath. Smooth chocolate frappe creamy mouthfeel, light level of carbonation, medium to thick body. I wish I hadn't sat on this one so long because I'd love to know what its like fresh. This is drinking beautifully right now, too bad its the only one I've ever seen.

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

Thanks to Schmittymack for sharing this one at our BA Dark Lord tasting. Poured a rich, deep black color with a medium brown head. Aromas of roasted malt, sweet chocolate and licorice. On the palate, this one was full bodied, with flavors of roasted malt, chocolate and licorice.

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Photo of azdback
4.45/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a small snifter. Jet, all light sucking, black. Highlights are.. well??? Jet black. Small one finger, tan colored and creamy appearing head, but doesn't seem all that carbonated.

Smell is of chocolate and raisins. And oh yeah coffee. Actually a lot of coffee and oh yeah chocolate. Some alcohol and spice and a bit of pipe tobacco.

Taste is initially a lot like the smell but not so much in the same order. There is the tartness of a currant or cherry followed by the deep roastyness flavors of coffee and some bitter chocolate. Late comes a bit of smoke and the alcohol burn.

Mouth is pretty much on par for the style. It is a bit dry from the tartness, but I'm okay with it.

Overall, I must say that this is a wonderful rendition of the style. This is a solid A in my book. Thanks to masterhomebrewer for the chance to try this.

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Photo of stakem
4.05/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bomber into a snifter, enjoyed with Kegatron and Slatetank. Bottle date of 2/23/10. This brew pours black in color with a tan cap that leaves leggy fingers of lacework on the glass. The cap recedes to just a continual film across the top. A swirl revives the cap back to a finger which retains very well. When held to the light, there is some ruby red throughout the body that you can faintly see.

The smell of this brew is quite tangy with alcohol but mixed with solid charred grain elements that comes across faintly of chocolate and tobacco across the back. There is a deep earthy element throughout. Raisins come out along with the fruited alcohol scent. This brew is earthy and roasty with a citrus aspect somewhat like fresh coffee beans. As it warms up, the alcohol gets quite fusel and hops are faintly evident mingled with a smoked to very roasted grain character.

The taste is a bit more herbal and a slightly mineral filled which I am not a fan of in stouts but as the experience continues it grows on me. Fruity hops are present mixed with a fruited aspect of tangy alcohol. A solid presence of roasted to charred grain thrives throughout this brews profile imparting a little bit of burnt grain astringency. At times this brew almost tastes soapy which is strange. However, more pleasant flavors dominate tasting of bitter chocolate, slightly stale coffee grinds. A smoked to burnt grain aftertaste lingers inside the mouth.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest level of carbonation. It is fairly easy drinking and a decent take on the style. This is an interesting arrangement with a bold array of flavors going on. At times I was really digging it and other times felt it was just ok. There is a lot going on in this brew to make your experience really drastic from cold to warm. At times I felt like I was drinking an american black ale, other times a mineral filled stout, it was interesting to say the least. Certainly worth a try. By itself it was pretty good, when we paired it up against other RIS brews this one came up a little short.

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Photo of sliverX
3.88/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Jeffo for the bottle
Poured pitch black nice thick head that drops to a heavy collar.
Smell deep roasted malt sweetness a hint of char
Taste sweet burnt malt touches of coffee and very dark chocolate
Mouthfeel is on the thin side but nicely fitting and carbonated.
A nice stout and one I would love to have regular access to

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Photo of Slatetank
4.1/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

thanks go out to Stakem for sharing this fine stout w Kegatron and me -enjoyed slightly cooler than cellar temp in a snifter Bottle date of 2/23/10.

the color is deep brown with translucent clarity. the head comes and goes to rings of light tan with a small bead. There are reddish highlights accenting the dark coffee color. The smell is unique in that it has a smoky and slightly grape-y odor, there is mild roasted smoke and slight toasted elements all coming together with mild nutty accents and slight vinous tinges in the yeast ester with a touch of alcohol presence. The feel does present a little in the way of smoke which is nice, but adds astringency also with a gentle sweetness from the malt giving body and even though they work together it seems a little on the thin side for the style with a dry finish and moderate amount of spice.

The flavor is good with a relatively high amount of smoke and light fruitiness with some cocoa and mild bitter woodiness with a gentle chewy malt graininess in the taste and hint of roasted accenting. The malt flavor seems to range from full roasted and smoky to just toasted with some biscuit and light grainy edges in the semi-bitter finish. This is a quality stout, a decent example of the style and the addition of smoke to the stout is giving this a bit of intrigue it might not normally warrant so I felt that it was executed well. I enjoyed it from start to finish.

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Photo of KickInTheChalice
3.7/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a tulip. Part of a 09, 10, Buffalo Trace, Jack Daniels side by side. From notes.

Appearance: This pours a mahogany color with walnut edges. A creamy tan colored head retains fairly well and leaves a little lacing.

Smell: Lots of roasted aroma here. Fully roasted malt, coffee, a lot of smoke and tobacco. The smoke and tobacco do not fit my normal preferences.

Taste: The flavor follows the nose, although some dark fruit sweetness sneaks in here. Full roasted malt, and coffee are noticeable up front and provide a firm bitterness. It eases up with some general quick sweetness in the middle that has a general dark fruit quality to it. Some earthy hop flavors up the bitterness - the wrong direction for how the sip is progressing. Toward the end, the flavor turns almost acrid, with smoke and tobacco adding to a taste that is already fairly bitter. The 09 has smoothed out considerably, and maybe aging this beer is the formula to greater success.

Mouthfeel: As can be expected from any RIS, this has a full body, but only light/medium for the style. A smooth medium carbonation neither adds nor detracts from the taste experience, simply highlights it. Toward the end of the sip, it becomes slightly acidic like brewed coffee and feels astringent as well.

Overall: This is a little bit rough on the palate to be considered very drinkable. A year on the 09 bumped it up a bit, maybe more time would help.

10: 4/4/3.5/4/3.5
09: 4/4/4/4

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Photo of Jwale73
3.87/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Thirstybird for the opportunity to try this one. Pours slightly darker than cola with a skim of a head and a thin band of froth around the edges. Head is refreshed with a swirl. Great nose - roast, cocoa, brown sugar and molasses. Taste is malty, roasty and expresses a bit of char, but also has a slightly chalky flavor. Mouthfeel is medium-light (but closer to light) with a mild, even carbonation and a slight acidity that was quite unexpected. A fairly solid and drinkable RIS, but not overly mind blowing. Probably not something I would seek out in the future.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.7/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle Date 022310; Sampled at Redlight Redlight; January 2011
This pours from the bottle with a black color and a brown head. The aroma has a smooth roast character to it as well as hint of licorice and big, aromatic chocolate like notes.

The flavor is more roast focused than the aroma would suggest and it even gets a bit burnt and acidic from the huge roasted grain expression found in this beer; I wouldn’t quite call it harsh though, but it definitely lingers quite a bit on the palate. There is an astringency that lingers on the tongue, and this can be a bit too much at times. This doesn’t quite have the malt and sweet / rich character to hold up to the ample roast character that makes up the dominant character of this beer. In the end, the aroma had me thinking this beer was going to be more tasty and balanced than it actually ended up being; certainly not anywhere close to being a bad beer, but I definitely was wishing for more malt lushness to balance out the somewhat too overwhelming roast character

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

A huge thanks to Wespatrick for this great extra. Cheers! Bottle date is 02-23-2010.

Appearance – Pours a dark chocolate brown into a tulip. About a finger of mocha colored head is achieved that leaves decent lacing.

Smell – Lots of dark roasted malts, cocoa, coffee, and slight licorice. As the beer warms a hint of vanilla shines through, along with oak and bourbon.

Taste – Burnt/roasted malts up front, semi-sweet cocoa/chocolate follows. Vanilla, oak, and coffee all intermix during the middle and it finishes a hint dry and almost chalky.

Mouthfeel – Medium bodied, decent carbonation for the style, finishes dry as stated.

Overall – A pretty good Russian Imperial Stout, though to be honest nothing I’d write home about. Glad to try this all the same!

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Photo of Vdubb86
4.13/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Duvel tulip

Thanks to hannydawg for hooking me up with this as my first SC beer.

The appearance is damn good on this beer, it come out of the bottle like used motor oil, black and viscous, just the way I like it. The head as we later determined is a burnt umber in color...yeah, you can blame TMoney2591 for the fact that I know what that color looks like. The aroma isn't much in the way of outstanding, but there is the coffee roast and smoke and chocolate hanging in the background. The taste is really dark. The roast is aggressive on the palate and gives off the flavor of strong coffee. There is a touch of smoke to help cut the coffee, but it doesn't do a good enough job. The mouthfeel is actually a bit thin for how thick this looked in the glass. As this beer warms up it gets thicker. Despite all my complaining this is actually a damn tasty stout. My suggestion is not to let it warm up too much there is a magic window of temperature where it tastes amazing. This beer reminds me very much of Half Acre Big Hugs. I wouldn't turn this down if ever offered to me.

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Photo of TMoney2591
4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

Big thanks to VDubb86 for sharing this bottle!

Bottled in December, 2010. Yar. This thing pours a slick obsidian topped by a half-finger of dusty burnt umber foam. I haven't been this attracted to a pirate since that brief time when I wanted a fling with Geena Davis from Cutthroat Island. (Don't worry, that phase was rather short-lived.) The nose comprises light charcoal, molasses, brown sugar, light roasted malts, light vanilla, cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, and very mild coffee. The taste holds notes of dark coffee, dark chocolate, molasses, roasted malts, relatively mild smoke, and brown sugar. Things aren't as dynamic as in the nose (if that makes any real sense), but it's still pretty tasty. The body is a light heavy, with a light moderate carbonation and a fairly chewy feel (though still pretty smooth as well). Overall, this is an outstanding stout. I hope to someday be able to try a barrel-aged version, but this is decidedly solid without such a treatment.

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Blackbeerd Imperial Stout from COAST Brewing Company
4.01 out of 5 based on 347 ratings.
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