Sexy Chaos | Marshall Wharf Brewing Company / Three Tides Restaurant

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Sexy ChaosSexy Chaos

Brewed by:
Marshall Wharf Brewing Company / Three Tides Restaurant
Maine, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
We age Chaos Choas on vanilla beans and toasted oak chips to give the already sultry and complex Russian Imperial Stout a sexy twist. Very limited availablilty.

Added by deltatauhobbit on 12-12-2009

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Reviews: 34 | Ratings: 145
Photo of Alieniloquium
3.48/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

16 oz. can poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Black with a big khaki head. Medium collar. A few wisps.

Smell - I guess it's got a little vanilla. Oak is strong. Chocolate.

Taste - Coffee. Chocolate. Nutty malts. A little vanilla. Strong oak in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Overcarbonated, even after sitting open for a while. Not too heavy.

Overall - I've really enjoyed Marshall Wharf beers in the past. I had really high expectations for this. Good, but didn't really live up to it.

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Photo of cosmicevan
3.75/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Unreal extra from BlessedBeBeer for sending me this growler fill as an extra!

a - through the glass this beer looks pretty sick like chocolate happiness. Opened the growler and poured into my bruery tulip. Beer poured a stunning shiny black with a thin mocha head...super creamy looking. lacing was sparse and the head has a bit of a milky glow.

s - OH BOY! First whiff is sweet tropical maple syrup chocolate with vanilla bean. Bit of an alcohol tingle on the nose but it adds a beautiful compliment.

t - heavy handed on chocolate...a bit cloying (i think this is the vanilla). there is some roastiness in there but this is dominated by chocolate syrup. it really is quite like drinking a glass of hershey's syrup. not for everyone for sure, but i can see plenty of people saying that this is the best ris ever. i don't pick up the oak flavors at all.

m - RICH. THICK. SLUDGY. strong alcohol presence.

o - my first overall rating, kind of weird...but cool. overall...this is a big beer. this is a sweet beer. this is a beer that i bet would kick butt and take names if it were aged in some bourbon barrels. stands up to many of the big RIS out there. really REALLY glad that i got a taste of this (thanks again to BlessedBeBeer). if the sweetness can be taken down a few notches, this would be perfect. overall...pretty good, i'd drink it again in a heartbeat but not something i would drink all night long.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.79/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Can from mixylplik3, thanks for the hookup Matt!
Pours totally opaque blackness with a huge tan head that persists forever before impaling itself to the sides of the glass. Vanilla, caramel, milk chocolate, light wood and alcohol, earthy hop, licorice and molasses make up most of the aroma. There's a lot going on here, but where is the roast? The flavor is caramel and vanilla up front followed by a solid shot of ethanol. Light chocolate comes in next along with light smoke and a burnt licorice kind of flavor. Light earthen woodiness and bits of dark dried fruit comes in before a lingering hop bite and alcohol finish. Thick body with a creamy silky mouthfeel, light to moderate level of carbonation. Big thick dark brew with a lot going on. I think the vanilla addition must really soften the roastiness in this beer because it seems lacking in that area. Big thick flavorful brew I enjoyed it, but would have preferred a softer alcohol bite.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
3.85/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at pigs fly. In a tulip the beer was black with a thin tan head.

Chocolate and roasted malt aroma. Nice enough.

Dark chocolate taste, espresso coffee. Much deeper taste than what the aroma hinted at.

Medium-bodied, very pleasant. While you can't taste the alcohol, you can certainly feel it.

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Photo of jwinship83
3.88/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

growler shared by user freeagent before NoTB. served in a small tasting glass.

A- this one pours a dark brown body that only a little bit of light can escape. a decent sized coffee colored head forms on top and quickly falls.

S- the first thing i pick up on in the nose is the vanilla. wow. very strong. after that i get the typical roasted malts i would expect in a stout. lots of chocolate, both milk and dark. lots of coffee. not picking up too much from the oak. pretty intense smelling brew.

T- the taste starts out with sweet milk chocolate and roasted malts. the vanilla beans i could smell come through much more subtly in the taste. lots of dark chocolate and coffee. still not too much from the oak chips. a little bit of booze.

M- big and viscous. chewy. palate coating and syrupy. a little bit of heat from the alcohol. a nice low level of carbonation that really works with this one.

D- too strong to have too many of, this was a sleeper hit from a brewery that ive never heard of before. check this one out if you get the chance.

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Photo of ltjska04
3.92/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to Gmr75 for the hook up on this one. It was left out of the refrigerator for 45 minutes before consumption. Poured from the pint can into a tulip glass results in pitch blackness even when held up to the light. Two fingers-worth of khaki foam billows on top of the inky liquid. The aroma is reminiscent of syrupy chocolate milk with hints of vanilla followed by wisps of alcohol. The taste exhibits more vanilla than the aroma with the chocolate taking a back seat. I don't detect any oak but the 10.7% alcohol makes itself known. I was hoping for a little more complexity here with a bit less burn. The mouthfeel is full and thick but decent carbonation keeps it from being too heavy. Not very creamy; maybe even slightly abrasive but not distracting. Overall a very good stout but my high expectations weren't fully met.

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Photo of Jwale73
3.97/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to jedwards for sharing this beer. Pours one shade shy of black with no head, just some bubbles around the edges. Ruby red highlights are revealed when backlit. Nose expresses wood, some char and a slightly vinous quality all on a malty backbone. Taste reveals dark malt, cocoa, spicy wood and some vinousness - finish is slightly charred and bitter. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with an even, pleasant carbonation. A light acidity also stimulates that sides of the cheeks. An excellent RIS. Definitely allow this brew to warm in order to bring out its depth and complexity.

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Photo of alaimoa
3.97/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Can from early December poured cold into a snifter
A: jet black with a vigorous pour leaving big creamy mocha head w coating dark lace
S: toasted nuts, coffee grinds, sweet chocolate
T: coffee upfront, bittersweet chocolate leads into a roasty blend of complex depth. Swings a bit toward the sweet side for me could use a bit of age
M: creamy, bit of chew, thick and almost feels like chocolate bar melting in mouth

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Photo of Bendurgin
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip at when pigs fly. Pours jet black with a nice mocha colored head.

The aroma has a nice mellow chocolate aroma with some nice roasted malts and some fruity character such as plumbs. Nice roasted malt flavors with some dark fruits with some milk chocolate flavor. Real enjoyable stuff.

The body is robust and silky with soft carbonation. Overall real good. Grab this one if you see it

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Photo of Treyliff
4.04/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

16oz can poured into a snifter

A- pours a deep opaque black with a massive creamy khaki colored head that eventually reduces a bit to leave some lacing behind

S- sweet caramel & chocolate malt sweetness up front, complimented by the vanilla. The oak is quite noticeable and adds a toasted nut aspect. A hint of dark fruit as it warms

T- Big & bold roasted chocolate malt up front brings out some smoky char, quickly followed by some light oak & vanilla. As it nears the finish, dark fruit flavors kick in with notes of raisin & fig. More chocolate with a hint of coffee on the finish

M- heavy body with low carbonation leads to a thick and chewy mouthfeel and a silky creamy finish, just what you'd expect from a RIS

O- near perfect mouthfeel with lots of bold roasted notes, which tends to overpower the oak and vanilla a bit

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Photo of Caput_H_lupulorum
4.08/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

16oz can
Look: A black beer with a brown foamy head that dissipates fast but leaves good lacing on the glass.
Smell: Fruity but not overly sweet.
Taste: Bold chocolate and coffee taste, some saltiness with tannic and very strong vanilla notes coming through in the finish.
Feel: Thick and smooth with a fine effervescence creating a creamy mouthfeel.
Overall: A cracking Imperial Stout, that is dangerously easy to drink.

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Photo of rodmanfor3
4.12/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was provided to me as an extra in a trade earlier in the year and sat in the cellar for months as an afterthought.

Overall, a surprisingly good beer that tasted much better than expected. A bit thin on the mouth but solid on flavor.

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Photo of benclimbs
4.16/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Excellent stout that is incredibly drinkable, balanced and complex.

Pours off-black with a light tan head, a bit of lacing.

Smell is oaky vanilla, coffee, cocoa and brandy.

Taste is nice, balanced light mouthfeel with an equal mix of dark malts, mocha and a little brandy or bourbon - finishes just off bitter.

Overall a terrific Imperial stout that is less sweet and sticky than most - goes down smooth.

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Photo of 05Harley
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased fresh at the "5th year of beer" festival on 10/13/12.
(336 calories)

Price - $18.00/growler

It was a real treat to score a couple of growlers and just as good here as on tap. I can't wait to get this in cans off the store shelf ;-)
One of my favorite offerings from Marshall Wharf.

The appearance is what you would expect from a big, bold, Russian Imperial Stout. Not quite midnight black but plenty dark with red highlights near the rim. A tan creamy head tops it off but retreats fairly quickly leaving behind a thin veil and decent lines.

The aroma is not as strong as you would expect from a beer weighing in at 11.2%. It may not be "in your face" but you still can't hide the unmistakeable smell of vanilla, caramel, burnt sugar, dark chocolate, bittering hops and wood. Pretty complex when you take the time to nail it all down. Like a fine wine, it gets more impressionable as it warms.

Taste is roasty right from the start followed by a blast of vanilla, oak, licorice and coffe beans. Dark chocolate and alcohol round it out and complete the experience. Not too boozy but a sipper none the less.

The mouthfeel begins silky smooth but quickly switches gears to a hoppy bitterness. A nice play on balance and interest. This beer is full bodied and somewhat syrupy. Very little carbonation but a fair amount of heat is present due to the octane. Finishes with a near perfect dryness for the style.

This is an excellant example of the style and a highlight of the season. Winter is here, so let's get warm with a glass of your favorite Imperial Stout.

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Photo of ToasterChef
4.24/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Valentine's Day 2013 saw Marshall Wharf in a generous mood: offering for sale rare growlers of Sexy Chaos. This growler has been refrigerated since it was purchased, except for the long drive back from Belfast. I'm served myself in a tulip glass.

The beer is colored very dark brown. The head is a shade of light brown and about a finger or two in height. It settles down to a thin skim. Good lacing is left behind.

There are great vanilla notes coming off of this beer. I also smell a good amount of dark roasted malts. This makes it more roasty than sweet, although there is a bit of alcohol in the nose too.

The beer has a very smooth flavor with a good amount of vanilla and a touch of roasted malt. There are hints of chocolate and some alcohol in the finish. What is quite impressive is that this doesn't taste anywhere near as strong as a 11+% ABV beer.

Again, this beer doesn't feel as thick or sticky as other RISes of this strength. There is flavorful coat that has some roast and sweetness. Carbonation does tingle, but the overall level is a bit low (due to this being a growler pour, I assume).

Overall, this is a fine RIS. It is another great beer out of Marshall Wharf. If you get a chance to try it, don't pass up on the opportunity.

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Photo of barhoc11
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Nice and dark, just how I like my RIS' s

S: Dark and rich, sweetness is not overwhelming.

T: Very rich, great taste at first but finish is 'hot' from the alcohol

M: Good as it should be

O: I liked this beer but was disappointed based on the alcohol burn. I have had other similar abv stouts that are much more well done. I would drink this again but it wouldn't beat out an easier to find beer such as Ten Fidy

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Photo of jedwards
4.27/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to chuckycheese for getting me a growler of this long-time want of mine. Opened at a tasting (and let me just say how much I appreciate Marshall Wharf putting a map of their location onto the growler -- really made answering that question a lot easier).

Pour is incredibly dark, some large bubbles around the edge from the pour and a thin, dense head rising up after it hits the glass. Aroma is initially roast and tannic oak, opening up as it warms to reveal burnt sugar, vanilla, and soy sauce. Taste is sweet charred malt, vanilla, tons of oaky spice, rich coffee, and finishes with a bitter bite (char? hops?). Slight oxidized/soy acidity keeps me coming back for more. Mouthfeel is rich, particularly for a growler fill, and carbonation is light but present.

As always, looking forward to future beers from MW.

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Photo of rudzud
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on the outdoor eating area at Marshall Wharf.

A - Poured into a standard PINT glass a dark oily black hue with a nice mocha thin head. Good wisping.

S - Aromas of rich roast chocolate malts and light oak and vanilla. Really nice ans inviting.

T - okay...Yah. Taste is full of chocolate and vanilla....the oak comes out on the finish. Until then its just nice and chocolates and vanilla. Delicious.

M - Mouthfeel is a nice ans creamy feel, not boozy at all. Could be more silky.

O - Overall I really enjoyed this stout. The vanilla and oak come through quite nicely. Just really nice, dangerously drinkable.

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Photo of dasenebler
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Marshall Wharf Sexy Chaos
16oz can, no code

Inky black. Thick tan head. Low carb. Sticky lacing. (4)

Alcohol, ester, coffee, light vanilla. Dark fruit as it warms up. Pleasing aroma. (4)

Roast, acidity. Heavy dark chocolate. Treacle, licorice. Heavy malts, booze. Few signs of oxidation. Pretty smooth for an impy and very balanced. Sweet, but with plenty of roast and enough hop bitterness to level the playing field. Time has served this baby well. Vanilla character likely higher if fresher. Moutfheel is very heavy, but not cloying. Carbonation is medium-low, nice small bubble size. (4.25, 4.5)

I can’t remember when I bought this can (Fall 2013?), but it’s been stored cold since. Has held up very well. Quite enjoyable as a luxurious evening sipper. I’m not always a fan of MW beers, but I’ve got to give credit where credit is due. Excellent stout. (4.75)

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Photo of jlindros
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Marshall Wharf takeover of Novare Res.

Pitch black syrupy thick dark beer with light creamy dark head,

Nose is dark malts, vanilla, caramel, roasty malts, sweet malts,

Taste is awesome, and delicious, vanilla, oak, molasses, crystal, choc, smooth and creamy, light biter roast,

Mouth is heavier bodied with decent carb.

Drink is good, light booze, light sticky feel

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Photo of dee4maine
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Looks: Dark black with a small off white head that dissipates fast. It does leave a decent lacing. She's not much of a looker folks, seems average for her type.
Smell: bringing her up to my nose, I detect faint sweet smelling cola like smells. Once again, kinda ok.
Taste & Mouthfeel : wow! Whoa! What just happened here. That is a very well tasting brew with just the right amount of dark malts flavors and then BAM! Here comes the waves of vanilla and after taste has some oak. Very silky on the tongue when warmed to room temp. Definitely a tad thinner body. I have to say that it had one of more prominent and pleasing vanilla notes in a beer I have had.
Overall: A very interesting infused RIS. Wish she had a slightly stronger nose and slightly heavier body (I like 'em that way guys, what can I say) Definitely worth trying if you come across. I don't think I will buy her in the amounts that I get Founders RIS or some other stouts.

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Photo of Brez07
4.32/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Great Lost Bear last night. 12oz tulip

A: Very dark beer. Black as night. Limited amount of tan head, no lacing

S: Not much nose at first, but as it warmed I picked up some bitter chocolate, vanilla and roasted malt

T: Starts with a good amount of roasted malt, but stops before it becomes overwhelming. There is an accompanying chocolate sweetness. Light bitter chocolate and vanilla undertones. Very well balanced. After a few sips I detect more chocolate. I laugh at this being 11%. No heat at all

M: Full bodied, creamy. Carbonation is enough to liven up the beer but still within the general framework for the style

D: Such a treat for me whenever it pops up in the area. Drinkability is insane. Probably my favorite beer from this brewery

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Photo of Bierman9
4.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Having had some Chaos Chaos already, I had to have a 1/2-pint of this offering as well during my 10DEC11 visit with Alewife. This also cost $4.50 for the 8oz glass.

Also poured in a small flute, it was, like Chaos Chaos, dark and opaque, a crude oil brown. Atop the brew was a creamy, rich tan head, lasting well and leaving very nice lacework. Nose was roasty coffee with some bitter hopping as well. Add onto that some whiskey and oaky aromas. It had a medium to medium-plus body, almost being chewy. And it raised no ruckus at all on the tongue going down.

Had a lovely roasty flavor, with similar coffee and bitter choco characteristics. Figgish and raisiny, then throw in some light bourbon, toasty oak and vanilla flavors and this one really goes places! A lovely bier, indeed!!

Zum Wohl!!

4.35 rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5


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Photo of deltatauhobbit
4.37/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Another Marshall Wharf winner, a big bad imperial stout, oaked aged with vanilla beans. Had at Novare Res during their beer geek Christmas event.

Pours a very dark brown color with a very thin wispy head, leaves some patchy lacing along the glass as I drank it.

Smell has a strong roasted malt aroma with vanilla being the headliner, not picking up any oak or wooden aspects from the aging.

Taste has a soft carbonation, thick mouthfeel, the roasted malt and vanilla is a real showstopper (although I personally don't care for vanilla all that much, it's the perfect amount for a beer to have and works wonderfully), the oak aging comes in to play a bit to add some complexity but isn't overdone like some others, not too cloying or sweet either.

I can't remember the strength even though it was listed, but I want to say it was around 10%.

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Photo of Drazzamatazz
4.37/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from a growler I've had in the fridge for a few weeks now thanks to Chuckycheese. Had the hardest time ever opening this sucker up, which worried me, but from the first pour I realized the carbonation was still spot on.

A: Deep charcoal with a wonderful cascading mocha head. Nice clinging to the sides, and as soon as you pour you realize this is going to be a full bodied monster. I'm getting a little bit of coconut too, which I'm digging.

S: Tons of sweet vanilla with a little bit of char in the back. Typical stout aromas can all be found, but the biggest thing setting this apart is a tangy sweetness.

T: First thing to really come through is a tangy fruit note, my girlfriend says it tastes like "grape soda" take from that what you will. Right after that the vanilla really comes out along side the oak notes. There's still a lingering sweetness throughout, but the last notes are a smooth roasted char finish.

M: Full bodied for sure, not quite motor oil, but this stuff clearly fills your mouth. Medium carbonation is just where it should be for a big imperial stout. For being so sweet its surprisingly dry in the finish, like a big full bodied tannic red is the closest comparison.

D: Anyone who went to Novare for Valentine's Day beer & chocolate pairings would know how drinkable this one is, clearly the most talked about beer of the night. I've had it a few times before, and I'm excited to destroy this growler. Its big and in your face, but its also smooth and complex and there's no real high presence of alcohol to be found.

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Sexy Chaos from Marshall Wharf Brewing Company / Three Tides Restaurant
4.24 out of 5 based on 145 ratings.
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