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Chocolate Rain | The Bruery

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Chocolate RainChocolate Rain

Brewed by:
The Bruery
California, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 18.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Black Tuesday with Vanilla Bean & Cocoa Nibs.

2011: 18.5% ABV
2012: 19.5% ABV
2013: 18.0% ABV
2014: 18.5% ABV

Added by mikedashg on 10-28-2009

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Reviews: 329 | Ratings: 2,572
Photo of steenkampa
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Absolutely amazing.

Got as part of a trade for a Sede Vacante from a local friend.

Very dark, almost no carbonation, super smooth. HUGE amounts of chocolate.

Not for everyone though, if you're not a fan of sweet heavy chocolates you won't like this one. Barely 'beer' at this point, but still amazing.

 305 characters

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Review #1000. Thought long and hard since October, the first time I had this, as to whether I could really give this kind of review after only having 4oz of it. So I drank it again at the RS party, bumping my total up to about a grand total of 10oz through roughly five different tastings.

Anyways, jeez, not pitch black, the brown chocolate current running through it, not a big head to it, its not supposed to. Why everyone thinks a beer can't have a perfect appearance unless it has massive carbonation leading to a 2" head and tons of lace clinging to the glass. . . (well actually this did cling decently). If it makes you feel better to get some visual stimulation, swirl it a little, it'll do what you want. Massive chocolate aroma, bourbon, vanilla.

Taste, I picture a crack fiend with a lighter and spoon, melting dark chocolate in the spoon and dropping it into the beer. Lots of vanilla come out with this one, everything is huge, except ironically, the alcohol. Bourbon, vanilla and chocolate pretty much bigger than an any other example I can think of. Wood tannin meld, very under the radar. Viscosity is not through the roof, just right. Such a warming feel to the alcohol, soaked up with the chocolate. Had many beers 1/3 the abv that come across with more heat and less enjoyable because of it.

I would guess there might be multiple sources of high end chocolate going into a high end beer here (cocoa, dark chocolate, white chocolate etc. . . ). Can't think of any beer that is bottled that rivals it. Really, I've come to the conclusion that the greatest beers in the world are just all the different varieties of Pliny and Black Tuesday.

 1,660 characters

Photo of SHODriver
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2013 bottling

A: Poured into a snifter to a deep black with a small tan head that fades to a collar around the edge of the glass leaving minimal lacing
S: Smells of chocolate and bourbon barrel influence with notes of caramel and vanilla. Good bit of alcohol on the nose as well with some slight oak
T: Taste is lots of chocolate with some alcohol, some slight caramel and vanilla with a hint of oak. After warming up there's some coffee and light roasted malt notes as well. Swallowing this one brings on even more layers of delicious chocolatey goodness. Lingering bourbon notes as well.
M: fairly big in the mouth with soft carbonation and a drying finish from the alcohol.
O: Absolutely incredible. Easily one of the best beers I've ever had. Drinks deceptively well for the ABV and the flavors are just off the charts awesome.

 843 characters

Photo of KevSal
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had some time to think this guy over for a bit(but not to long to forget our encounter), had it at the Reserve Society Initiation party pourd into a taster.

Had low expectations going into this guy because of all the hype.

A- This is the tough part given the circumstances, very rushed pour(within the madness) into a taster, it becomes a bit tricky to rate appearance. After the pour I get away from the chaos and this guy looks great. didn't get a huge head, but it dissipates quickly to a nice brown ring around the glass.

s- if i could give this a 6 it would be well deserved, this guy smells amazing. i must have sat there smelling this guy for several minutes, could have sat there all day. strong smell of chocolate (ofcourse), a lot of bourbon goodness, and vanilla

t- cant describe this, its absolutle amazing. are you kidding me, the hype is real? tons of chocolate, vanilla and very low alcohol burn considering the abv.

m- perfect, exactly how i like my stouts, thick, full mouth feel. the flavor is everywhere!

d- done already! extremely drinkable, could have easily drank this all day. careful with this guy its so drinkable it will creep on you quick.

some say the alcohol taste is high in this guy, i didn't get it at all. in fact i cant believe just how drinkable this beast is.

You want a beer that has a good chance to RUIN a style for you this is as close as it gets. to me this is perfection in a glass and ill tell you it infuriates me to say that because i didn't want it to be so. must try this again! hype well deserved.

 1,556 characters

Photo of wulfie85
5/5  rDev +12.9%

One of the best beers I have ever had. Poured black and smelled like bourbon with a little chocolate. The flavor was like taking a drink of bourbon but with a milk chocolate finish. So chocolately it was almost like I had a piece of chocolate in my mouth.

 255 characters

Photo of rodbeermunch
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Well I guess its time for the 3rd perfect score. We're almost up to 1900 reviews, might as well break this one out.
I've had this at least a dozen times now, for good reason. I love it.

Pours substantially brown and black, perhaps less black than black tuesday because of the heavy amount of chocolate addition to it. The forced carbonation does wonders as it always has at least a full inch of brown head on the top of it. Poured into tulip glasses while in the oversized jacuzzi tub or hot tub outdoors, this one proudly has a 100% score rating with the ladies afterwards.

Well you can't get a bigger chocolate aroma than this . Rogue Double Chocolate, Southern Tier Choklat, they come close. But this gets even better as the bourbon, vanilla, oak and sugar round out the chocolate experience.

Wow, its a warm one, definitely you feel the warmth as it slides down the throat, but there is no burn, so much sweetness and chocolate that it prevents that. Sticky mouthfeel and cling, the bourbon and chocolate never fade, never relent.

Even the vanilla won't take a back seat on this. I guess the oak kind of does, being that everything else is more substantial, but dont downplay the oak, it has a good rounding quality for everything else.

If your lady loves chocolate, you owe it to her and your dick to pop a bottle of this when its just you two (or three if she's cool and brings a friend). YMMV.

 1,420 characters

Photo of BrewClint
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Just an incredible experience! Pure deliciousness combined with chocolate! Awesome!
2nd strongest Stout I have ever tried!
Pure black! Incredible experience! As expected!

 172 characters

Photo of floridadrift
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A total package stout.

Huge vanilla notes and chocolate whifs with dangerously smooth bourbon notes. This beer is complete, it needs nothing more, it was a little thin but it needed to be. Huge oak and vanilla, again and again. Good lacing from cold to warm. Pitch black monster from the chocolate depths!

I was so pleasantly surprised by this beer. Very thankful to finally conquer this brew! Fantastic.

A hot mess with no huge whifs of any fudge or chocolate or vanilla.

 488 characters

Photo of Bankhead
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

sampled as many ounces as possible at mardi noir while some stayed dry and others felt the pain

a dense flat black brown syrup that makes legs with a swirl like a port wine or chocolate liqueur

aroma envelops the nostrils full of sweet bourbon and vanilla and fudgy inviting liquorish dark fruits

taste follows and combines all the decadence i love in this type of beer with a shocking smoothness

they should bottle this puppy in twelve ouncers

overall an overwhelming beer sensation

i had to move away from the glass to breathe in

 537 characters

Photo of peacehammer
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Cask at Session two of 2011 Black Tuesday.

After sampling BT first, I wasn't sure how much more chocolate flavor could be worked into a beer.

I couldn't have been more wrong. A beautiful black viscous pour.aroma of Chocolate, vanilla and bourbon. A bit strong on the mouth, but amazingly balanced and very smooth all things considered.

Chocolate flavor present throughout. Might have been the best beer I've tasted.

 418 characters

Photo of lanciloti
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Black Tuesday on another level! Chocolate is subtle yet noticeable, viscous oil flavor explosion. Lives up to the hype and then some in my opinion. Worth seeking out for sure.

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Photo of BeerXKing
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A; pours a dark brown colored body with some amber tints to it. created an off-white thin head that quickly dissipated.

S: big alcohol soaked dark fruits right up front, with an awesome sweet dark chocolate toffee/molasses and vanilla bean blats. this beer doesn't smell like its 18.5%..

T: i pick up on an immense sweetness but its not overly sweet. big chocolate, toffee, alcohol soaked figs/raisins, and a bit of heat to it that's actually quite inviting. for 18.5% this is extremely smooth and the finish is an awesome creamy vanilla that helps cut out the alcohol.

M: on the lighter side of full bodied. chocolate, vanilla and touch of alcohol is left on the palate. this is really enjoyable.

O: An outstanding brew. extremely well balanced, and has just the right amount of sweetness to cut out the big ABV.

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Photo of aknight
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a dark, dark brown, almost black. Virtually no head, just a giant slick of oil. The smell is chocolaty sweetness. The taste is the familiar Black Tuesday, intensely flavorful and sweet but the chocolate adds another level of complexity without really adding to the sweetness of an already very sweet beer. The chocolate is very evident but not overwhelmingly so and is a wonderful compliment to this beer.

 411 characters

Photo of Brandonparrent
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

wow beer. great chocolate, molasses boozy sweetness. the only bad part was i only had 1 bottle. Love what the Bruery is doing with beer!!!!!!! wishing i loved closer to LA #bruerybeer

 184 characters

Photo of SinjaminBentek
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle share at Courtyard & Cellar for Toppling Goliath Mornin' Delight release!

750ml Bottle.

Very smooth. Very complex. Very sweet. Lots of chocolate. Alcohol is completely hidden. Jet black in color. One of the best beers I have ever tasted! Highly recommended.


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Photo of M1A2
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Chocolate Rain 750ml, 19.5%, B2. Ahh we finally meet, bottle opened and split between a few other BA's, 6/1/13 ESN2!

Appearance - Poured a deep almost black with dark red edges with very little head but left a thin ring in the center and around the edge of the glass.

Smell - Wow are you kidding me!! The smell of Chocolate Rain is the best smelling beer i have ever had the chance to smell period!!, sweet baker's chocolate, cocoa, vanilla and bourbon barrel notes all mixed together in an all out attack on the nose, i could of sat and smelled it all night.

Taste - Taste mirrors the smell!, big sweet chocolate (go figure), bourbon, vanilla, oak from the barrel that all blends together perfectly. 19.5% not here! There is a little alcohol heat in the back end but it never got overpowering even as it warmed up and the after taste hangs around for days!

Mouth feel - Velvety, creamy and silky all at the same time great mouth feel.

Overall - This is an absolute must try and is totally worth it, how ever you can get your hands on a bottle do it!! This beer may have ruined this style of big high ABV barrel aged beers for me as nothing will live up to what this one did. IMO this is perfection in a bottle hype well deserved.

 1,237 characters

Photo of Spectre
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The Chocolate Rain is a variation of Black Tuesday. Even though higher in ABV the flavor is a tad lighter.

A. Thick black with a dark brown head.

S. Chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, & coffee.

T. All described in the smell are noticeable but the two flavors that stand out the most while drinking are chocolate and vanilla. Real powerful in taste but stands out more on the sweet side. Not bitter in anyway.

M. Thick syrup and extremely smooth. Consume in a small round glass taking a sip at a time or this beer will be gone before you know it.

Overall I would have to say Black Tuesday is the king of stouts and the variation Chocolate Rain is the cherry on the icing. For 19.5 the alcohol is well hidden and the flavor is extremely enjoyable for any drinkers choice.

 769 characters

Photo of ivegot3Dvision
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

What can I say? It's Black Tuesday with chocolate and vanilla. The nose is huge on this, and the taste to follow lives up to what your nose is telling you. Get some.

 165 characters

Photo of azagthoth
5/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I shared this divine 4 oz cask pour inside a Bruery tulip glass with fellow advocate and Bruery loyalist tedbyrnes at the Black Tuesday release.

Appearance - Rather nubilous and subtle in appearance without even a modicum of a head being represented. Truly, this was a display of velvet in a glass.

Smell - An insistent companionship of milk chocolate and syrupy vanilla accompanied by the tenacity of bourbon. A second whiff might suggest you order a luscious cut of your favorite chocolate cake to chaperon such a gratifying experience.

Taste - Nothing like I have ever experienced and incomparable to any beer out there. There are distinctive types of identities in the taste that I can't put into words, rendering me ineffectual to pinpoint specifics. I could assert, however, that this is what a Vanilla Bean Chocolate wine would taste like (if such a thing exists, or were to). This is just so unique and something one must personally experience to comprehend what I am getting at here.

Mouthfeel - Like wine, compensated with drops of syrup to refine the finish. The absence of carbonation was clearly not a factor in the mouthfeel.

Drinkability - I could moderately sip on 8-12 ounces of Chocolate Rain all night, as this beer should elevate it's qualities at higher temperatures. The 19.5% ABV is nearly indiscernible, respectively, thus permitting the drinkability at a whole new level.

 1,401 characters

Photo of Shon4star
4.99/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer had big expectations for me. Then it blew every single one of them away. I had the 2013 vintage. It instantly became a favorite of mine. Strong chocolate and slight vanilla give this brew the taste of a chocolate bar. The 18% abv(2013) wasn't that noticeable. This is serious perfection in a bottle!

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Photo of ThePaleRider
4.99/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Beautiful brown ale poured into a Firestone taster. The smell is intoxicating. Lots of dark chocolate. Lots of booze. Loads of oak. This is a whiskey lovers desert. The taste is like a whiskey white russian. Very amazing chocolate, whiskey, coffee flavors in there. The best stout I have ever tasted. Lots of boozy bite on the tongue and very warming, but very smooth for 18.5%. Bravo Bruery, bravo! Can't wait to age on of these bad boys. 2013 series.

 452 characters

Photo of Brew_Bear
4.99/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Chocolate Rain, 2013 vintage. Tasted July 5th, 2014.


Pours opaque black with tones of deep red. Initially there is almost no head, and the little there is disappears quickly. No lacing.


It is baffling how complex the aroma is. At first I'm sucked into a whirlpool of dark chocolate, milk chocolate, and vanilla. Holy cow.

Once I recover, sweet ripe dates as well as red raisin greet my nose. I can also definitely smell the alcohol. There is a hint of wood somewhere in the back, and I perceive sweet bourbon somewhere in the distance. I'm overwhelmed with sweetness, sweetness, and more sweetness. Brown sugar, and sugar pie (a French Canadian specialty: brown sugar, cream, butter).

It doesn't take too long for fortified wine, port wine, madera and sherry to make their presence known, in no uncertain way. They are supported by a malty back bone.

As if it was not sweet enough, other desserts come to me after it warms up: chocolate cake, some sweet carrot cake, notes of cola, truffle, and caramel.


It tastes almost as complex as the aroma. My first impression is all dark chocolate and vanilla, with a touch of espresso, truffle, and caramel. It is almost unbearable how good this is.

Sugar pie returns (caramelized cream and brown sugar) - you really have to try this one day to know what I'm talking about. I feel like I'm drinking fancy Swiss chocolate candies. A little note of cinnamon remains after the sip is gone.

I can actually taste the alcohol. However, it doesn't overpowers anything, it balances well with the other components. Eventually I spot a few extras that do their thing quietly in the background: amaretto, a touch of hazelnut, and almond.

Finally, I taste what's going on in the background: tobacco, leather, and a hint of fig.

I was a little surprised to find very little bourbon, wood, molasses and licorice, which are typically found abundantly in this type of beer. I suspect those qualities couldn't find a spotlight on this crowded stage. Btw this is not a flaw, just something unusual. The beer is already outstanding.


The carbonation is pretty low, and I stand in a world of warmth from the alcohol (not burning though). Curiously, it leaves in my mouth a prickly sensation, that faintly numbs my tongue and even the inside of my cheeks. I suspect the vanilla to be responsible.

I was expecting a very thick and oily beer, but no, surprisingly, its body leans on the light to medium side. Viscosity is average, and it is not very chewy. It is extremely pleasant, to be honest, it elevates the drinkability. Even more surprising, the finish is rather crisp for that style of beer. Perhaps aging it for a year and half has thinned it just right?


Lots of surprises with this beer, especially with the mouth feel. The only flaw I found was the lack of head, which is a fairly minor one. For me this beer is nearly perfect, mature, and -excuse the language- fucking EPIC.

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Photo of Mauerhan
4.97/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

so I like the dumb ass that I am show up at 4:25 to get in line for black tuesday... 3 hours and 200 places in line later I get into the bruery make a sprint to the bar and enjoy an 8 oz pour of this magic.

pours darker than anything I have ever had. pitch black wouldn't do this justice. zero carbonation. sticks to the sides of the glass like a needy girlfriend leaving thick sheets of residue that are darker than most imperial stouts

smell makes me want to cry. the smell alone was worth at least half the time spent in that god awful cluster fuck of a line. I am hit instantly with rich milk chocolate, notes of toffee and vanilla dance around with the rich smell of bourbon. I am left in awe.

taste is literally to die for. everything that is present in the smell comes out in spades in the taste. a lot more toffee evident in the taste than from the smell. huge amounts of chocolate. this beer tastes like if bourbon county stout and southern tier choklat had a baby. and then that beer went to an ivy league beer school and graduated valedictorian of its class...

mouth is smooth and creamy. rich and viscous. thick and satisfying. this beer is 19.5? It drinks like its an 8. truly an abv ninja hiding out in the bottle waiting to attack your blood stream.

hands down one of the BEST beers I have ever had the chance to drink. I read a while back that someone compared vanilla bean dark lord to "gods cum" well if thats the case then this is what god was drinking for a few weeks before releasing the vbdl. well worth the hype. in fact I dont believe this beer is getting enough hype. GREAT JOB BRUERY CREW!

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Photo of tregan_20
4.97/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2015 bottle poured into a snifter and shared with friends. The look (upon pour) was extremely dark with a small amount of head and lacing. The smell is similar to Black Tuesday; I got heavy vanilla, cocoa and semi-sweet chocolate on the nose. The flavor of chocolate really takes over here! I also noticed caramel and molasses in addition to the smells aforementioned above. The mouthfeel is definitely full bodied with low carbonation. Overall this beer is surprisingly easy to drink given its super high ABV. This one definitely lived up to the hype in my opinion. Worth seeking out, cheers!

 593 characters

Photo of winningwes91
4.96/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Here it goes. Pours out a dark brown color. Not quite black. Smells absolutely divine. Like bourbon soaked brownie batter with some vanilla. Taste follows suit with dark fruits popping. I'm not sure where that 19.5 percent alcohol is, but it's dangerous. Medium full mouthfeel with a nice warming on the backend. Slightly better than black Tuesday. Amazing stuff if you have a sweet tooth

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Chocolate Rain from The Bruery
4.43 out of 5 based on 2,572 ratings.
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