Chocolate Rain | The Bruery

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98
world-class
337 Reviews
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Chocolate RainChocolate Rain
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
The Bruery
California, United States
thebruery.com

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
2015: 18.4% ABV
2016: 19.7% ABV
2017: 19.6% ABV

Added by mikedashg on 10-28-2009

BEER STATS
Reviews:
337
Ratings:
2,648
Avg:
4.43
pDev:
10.16%
 
 
Wants:
2,598
Gots:
991
For Trade:
129
User Reviews
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Reviews: 337 | Ratings: 2,648
Photo of Wayne17
4.57/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

At first I just smell and taste chocolate covered raisins, which is awesome. But as this warms it gets so much more complex. The wood and the whiskey really come out as it warms. A very sweet stout indeed but I don't mind it one bit. Only thing that doesn't scream out to me is the vanilla bean. Would more vanilla make this beer better? Probably. Is this still one of the best BBA stouts I've ever had? Yes. I'll drink this any chance I can get.

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Photo of Scotchboy
4.57/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2012 bottling, 750ml bottle split into snifters with my brothers - much thanks to Sean for this one -

A: Can't figure out how this is possible but it isn't even close to opaque...dark brown pour with ruby highlights...nearly no head but epic alcohol legs. Still looks good.

S: Huge boozy dark fruits here, lots of rum-soaked raisin character...smoothed-out caramel and lots of vanilla...big bourbon tones...lots of chocolate character too after you get used to the vanilla and boozy dark fruits.

T: Milk chocolate like a boss...chocolate and vanilla liqueur...dark caramel and burnt residual sugars...bourbon sweetness...booziness is apparent but totally manageable, the warmth is actually pretty nice and cuts some of the sweetness...

MF: Very low carbonation, moderate warmth from the booze, viscous and full-bodied...this is the epitome of a sipping beer.

O: Pretty awesome, as you get used to all of the boozy characters (dark fruits, vanilla, caramel, and bourbon) the chocolate is pretty epic in this thing. Totally recommended if you can snag one.

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Photo of wethorseblanket
4.56/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes. On-tap for the Third Anniversary Party at the Phoenix Club. 5/29/11.

A: Pours an oily, deep black with a faint dark tan head which leaves a couple of spots.

N: Dark cocoa powder, milk chocolate, roast, vanilla, dark fruits, boozy, molasses, warm caramel and maple.

T: Complex. Dark chocolate, vanilla, caramel, bourbon, brown sugar, aged wood, charred leather. Amazing.

M: Full body and light carbonation. Rich, oily, creamy, sweet, syrupy, bourbon soaked chocolate cake.

O: Stunning and in awe.

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Photo of beerdrifter
4.56/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up in a great trade with Mike! 2013 vintage. Pitch black pour with a quickly fading one finger caramel-colored head with minimal lacing. The nose is huge chocolate fudge and booze, along with hints of vanilla, dark fruit, dark chocolate, and did I mention booze. The taste is bold and super rich with once again, lots of booze. Hints of vanilla, oak, dark fruit, maple, molasses, espresso, caramel, leather, tobacco, and milk chocolate. The mouthfeel is thick and syrupy with low carbonation and a great warming finish. It approaches cloying, and it's definitely a sipper, but still incredibly drinkable for such a big beer. Overall, yes, it's hot and boozey, but it's so good! Much more upside than down. Highly recommended!

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Photo of Thehuntmaster
4.56/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle, 19,5% Abv.
Served lightly chilled in an over sized wine glass.
Bottled on: 02/09/2012 Lot 30

Thanks a million to futura123 for hooking me up with this bottle.

Appearance: Hmmm, Chocolate Rain is far lighter than I expected. The body is dark brown and a back light shows a lot of deep red along the edges of the glass. A rough pour generates a small tan coloured head that dissipates almost instantly and leaves no lacing. As one would expect from a beer that is 19,5%, a swirl coats the glass in thick, yellow tinted alcohol legs.

Smell: Mmmmm this smells absolutely amazing! There is not as much chocolate as I was expecting (it is no Southern Tier Choklat), but who cares when it smells this good! Notes include: Dark and milk chocolate, cocoa, bourbon, dark caramel, brown sugar, butterscotch, sweet vanilla, cocoa laced butter icing, chocolate liqueur, a ton of sweet dark fruits (cherries, raisins, dates and plums), a little oak and some molasses. For nearly 20%, there is shockingly little booze in the nose.

Taste: The flavour follows on from the nose and is absolutely delicious. Notes include: A ton of chocolate, sweet dark caramel, toffee, bourbon, brown sugar, vanilla, oak, dark fruits and some molasses. As the beer warms the alcohol becomes a little bothersome, but that has to be expected from a beer of this Abv.

Mouthfeel: The body is just shy of full, but incredibly sticky and the carbonation is of a medium-low level and nicely smooth. I could sip on a beer like this all day!

Overall: Don't get me wrong, Chocolate Rain is a phenomenal beer, but I think I preferred Black Tuesday.

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Photo of Lucnifter
4.56/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2015 vintage. Pours dark brown, verging on black with a small tan head that dissipates very quickly. The aroma is vanilla, bourbon, Belgian yeast esters, chocolate, alcohol and oak. Taste is extremely sweet with chocolate and bourbon leading the charge and leaving little space for anything else to play on the stage. Mouthfeel is thin for a big beer. Very good overall. A fantastic desert beer.

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Photo of JamesStreet
4.55/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2014 vintage acquired from Pdmoore (thanks)!
A- pours a not quite, black with a mahogany shimmer in the light. Not much head and it fades off pretty quickly
S- booze, caramel, chocolate, toffee, some dark fruit. Really nice
T- Wow! Incredibly complex. You get some sweet acidity from fruits on the first part of the sip before the booze and toffee comes in followed by caramel and chocolate and more booze. Really sweet.
M- A bit pricklier than I would of thought. Rounds out into a medium, creamy feel. Not quite cloyingly sweet, but very close.
O- this beer was well worth the wait. Definite sipper and oh so tasty.

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Photo of Vonerichs
4.55/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2013 vintage

It poured surprisingly thin compared to what I've been accustomed to with Briery releases. It's still thick, but not motor oil thick. There's also a little light that passes through it, giving it a dark brown appearance.

Aroma is dessert in a glass. Fudge brownies and vanilla bean.

This one met my high expectations. It's sweet and chocolatey. Boozey, but at 18% not as bad as I'd expect. I'm thrilled that it's not cloyingly sweet like a lot of these Bruery releases are. It seriously tastes like a fudge brownie a la mode. So good.

It's thicker than it appears. Soft, good carbonation. Boozey and a sipper. Sweet through and through.

I'm glad this also lived up to the hype. I've been dying to try this one for years and was not disappointed.

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Photo of skiking70
4.55/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I have looked forward to trying this beer for some time and it sure didn't disappoint me. The smell is amazing, the chocolate is the first thing that hits your nose, followed by the bourbon. The taste follows the smell, with the chocolate up front along with bourbon and finishes with a subtle vanilla finish. I'm not sure how they hid the 19 percent, you will need help, because it is sweet.

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Photo of Beerzebub
4.55/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Leftovers of a bottle saved from the previous night, poured in a Bruery tulip. Dark brown, delicious and cohesive aroma of bourbon, raisins, a moderate dose of dark chocolate, and something herbaceous, almost minty. Sweet and moderately boozy on the palate, with rich dark fruit like raisins and figs, dark brown sugar, bourbon, super smooth and tasty. Long bourbon barrel finish, finally going dry at the very end with just a touch of bitterness. Good stuff.

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Photo of mhksuccess
4.55/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pour from bottle into my bruery snifter glass
pours dark and very little head if any very little lacing
smell is overwhelming chocolate and vanilla
which is reflected in the taste first upfront is heavy chocolate
and the backend is vanilla heavy
very strong not hott but definite can tell it has a high abv
i split half the bottle and was slowing down by the last of it
may need to split three or four ways next time
overall i really enjoyed this bottle it was sweet but not as sweet as some people tend to describe it as a sugar bomb
definite something to try if you have not had

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Photo of teamizm
4.55/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Bruery RS Initiation Party

A - Pours a deep espresso, almost black, but with a slight brown hue. Very small lacing, virtually no head.

S - Vanilla, bourbon, chocolate, chocolate, chocolate. But ot only just chocolate, you gets hints of milk chocolate, semi-sweet chocolate, dark chocolate. One of the most complex beers I have ever smelled.

T - Sticky sweetness, with vanilla, chocolate, bourbon, maple syrup, toffee, and some caramel.

M - I don't like to give 5s normally, but man, the mouthfeel is creamy, complex, and very very smooth. This is what sets apart both Black Tuesday and Chocolate Rain from all the other big RIS.

D - Slight burn, but for the amount of octane this beer has, the burn is every so slight. Dangerously drinkable.

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Photo of Duff27
4.54/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Dark brown body with brown highlights around the edges collar left.

S- Vanilla pops out immediately. Sweet, minty smelling. World class aroma.

T- I'd say vanilla in the forefront, not an aggressive vanilla though...very mellow. Bourbon heat mellow as well.

M- Low end of carbonation. Chewy thick mouthfeel.

D/O- Coco Rain, a real pleasure to sip. only BCBVS competes on the vanilla scale. Thanks 4DAloveofSTOUT!

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Photo of markchristenson
4.53/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Was a bit concerned given the chocolate content, but was pleasantly surprised. Noticeable chocolate on the nose, but on the palate it seemed to meld together almost perfectly. Rich and full-bodied, with a pleasant creaminess. Coffee, black fruit notes, chocolate (duh!). The alcohol is noticeable, but considering it is 18% it is surprisingly contained. Really good stuff!

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Photo of Stevedore
4.53/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

75cl bottle, vintage 2012. Generously shared by lunarbrew at a crazy bottleshare last night, 10/5/2013. Poured into a Zwanze 2013 glass.

Review #225.

Looks like Black Tuesday. Pours motor oil and looks like liquid chocolate, like fondue. Opaque, black and chewy. Even came out with a 1cm mocha head that had fairly good retention. Not much lacing. Looks like freakin' dessert.

Heavenly is what I'd call the smell. We had just drank 2011 Black Tuesday before opening up this one, and it smells even better than BT. The massive sweetness of the base BT is tempered a bit by cocoa bitterness and raw vanilla, which is perfect. It's intense and over the top, which is the Bruery for you.

I love how this beer tastes. The sweetness is pretty much a straight up caramel-molasses-sugar bomb. So intensely sweet, but not overly so because of the bigness of the vanilla essence and the bitterness of the cocoa nibs. A good bit of barrel contribution, giving us some sweet bourbon and some oak.

Mouthfeel is BT plus. Medium bodied, basically liquid dessert, much like Bourbon County Stout. Carbonation is low which is expected here. Best thing about it is that there is no booziness whatsoever in this 19.5% beer. Dang! Finish is complex as hell with a nice resinous quality to it. Not too sticky, not too dry. Its great.

This is an awesome imperial stout. Much better than Black Tuesday for sure.. the adjuncts do a great job of taming down BT's ridiculous sugar bomb aspect, and there is no heat in this. None at all. This is a treat, but I would agree that you have to open this bottle with 4-5 other people to be able to fully enjoy this.

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.52/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I shared a bottle with the guys the other day, side by side with the 2010 Black Tuesday.

Like BT, this is dark brown with a dense, brown head that recedes to a ring leaving nothing but gorgeous legs. The nose has chocolate, chocolate, vanilla and more chocolate. Intensely decadent, this has brown sugar, vanilla and bourbon. Like BT, it displays an abject lack of roast or coffee aromas, this has plenty of caramel to go with the chocolate. The palate is what you'd expect - chocolate, vanilla, bourbon, brown sugar, no tannins and intensely dessert-like. It's good for what it is, sweet and boozy on the finish, a decadent treat. Full in body with medium-light carbonation, the mouthfeel is rather tremendous. Not as good as the cask version I had, but still, very, very good.

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Photo of SteveB24
4.52/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Look-color is a surprisingly clear, lightish brown, not unlike milk chocolate, no head at all save for a few stray bubbles.
Smell-TONS of sweet chocolate, booze, and vanilla.
Taste-Loads of milky chocolate upfront, faint notes of caramel, vanilla, some coconut in there as well, and a slight touch of alcohol but nowhere near the level you might except from a beer this big.
Feel-Very thick and creamy, very faint carbonation.
Overall-This beer is a wonderful treat, hopefully i'll be lucky enough to try it again sometime.

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Photo of Mavajo
4.51/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Do I even need to bother describing the appearance? Pitch black with a very minimal cream head.

This thing reeks of booze and vanilla bean, with chocolate back behind it -- I love it! Taste is the same. Actually reminds me a good bit of World Wide Stout. Big chocolate, licorice, vanilla, "bourbon" (and all that entails) and booze. I keep saying "booze" -- but don't let that fool you. Also, there's some roast on the palate, which I'm extremely sensitive too -- but it's minimal and quickly overwhelmed by the rest of the beer. This is imminently drinkable and smooth, with a nice warming burn as it goes down. Mouthfeel is syrupy, but not overly thick.

I love it, but I think I loved Black Tuesday even more. And quite frankly, I feel like World Wide Stout scratches the same itch pretty well...and WWS is way more readily available.

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Photo of zac16125
4.51/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle poured into a snifter
020912 Lot 30

Another huge thanks to Redbeeron for sending over this big time want in a trade!

A: Pours a quite thin appearing dark brown with lightening on the edges. An aggressive pour yields approximately 1/2 fingers width of light tan head which dissipates down almost immediately to a think outer ring. Leaves no appreciable lacing. Actually appears very similar to a cola.

S: Tons of bourbon and dark fruits. Cinnamon, caramel, vanilla bean ice cream, rich dark and milk chocolate, balancing booze, maybe even a hint of coconut. Jesus. Its so sweet and delicious smelling. Intoxicating. Incredible.

T: Huge sweetness up front, with a big caramel/toffee presence. Dark fruits, fig and cherry. Pretty boozy from the get go, but it has to be to balance out the huge sweetness. Cocoa is significant and hangs around for ages in the aftertaste. Taste is similar to dark chocolate covered cherries, soaked in booze. I also get burnt sugar, bourbon, raw oak, some roasted malt flavors and vanilla which makes itself known but is mild. Awesome palate profile here.

M/D: Smooth, slightly syrupy with an appropriately low carbonation. By no means thin, but could be thicker and chewier. Drinkability is actually very good, but this one is a slow sipper, thats for sure. And although this has a boozy component throughout, it does an incredible job of keeping the 19.5% ABV in check. Its the highest ABV beer I have had to date, and even with that ABV it is not necessarily even hot going down.

O: Overall, another big hit from the Bruery in my book. Its literally one of the best smelling beers I have ever had, and the taste is excellent (but not quite to the degree of the nose). Im very glad I was able to try this one, and will definitely seek it out again. As far as in comparison to Black Tuesday, I like CR more. Better aroma and greater balance in the flavor profile (less of the straight up diabetes-inducing sweetness bomb that BT is). I'd drink both any chance I got, but BT is great, and CR is excellent.

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Photo of KYGunner
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The Rain pours down in an alluring brown murkiness that holds a deeply thick and robust crown of Brown foam.

The aroma hits sharply with a snap of alcohol but then settles in with coconut and vanilla. Deeper in the aroma starts to really penetrate deep in the nose with fudgy chocolate and molasses.

The fudge, chocolate and brownie like flavors burst on the palate as the finish ends with cream and whiskey notes.

The feel is smooth and quite thick. The alcohol is imperceptible but for a warmth that enters the body and gives you a happy feeling all over.

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Photo of SadMachine
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes

A- Pours mostly black with dark brown hues around the edges. A small off-white head dissipates quickly, leaving no lacing.

S- The aroma is very in your face. Tons of whiskey, thick chewy fudge, vanilla, and oak. Alcohol soaked dark fruits, namely prunes, dates, and figs are also prevalent.

T- The flavor is sweet as expected. The most prominent flavors are actually the dark fruits previously mentioned. Roasted malts and a bit of bitter baker's chocolate make an appearance. The fudge and vanilla play supporting roles. There's big bourbon alcohol in the finish.

M- The mouth feel is super thick, smooth, and velvety. Just the right amount of carbonation. A significant, but not overwhelming amount of warming booze.

O- This is basically like drinking bourbon-soaked dark fruits with vanilla and fudge. A very tasty imperial stout!

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

just a ludicrous beverage here, i mean come on guys, this is taking it pretty far, and its truly epic. maybe the final evolution of the huge stout. i was amazed by this on so many levels, although i also have to say that doing anything to black tuesday seems a bit ridiculous, like improving on perfection is pretty tough right? and im definitely not sure this improves on it any at all, but it does create a whole new landscape, and a delicious one. the chocolate is really dominant, aptly named obviously, its a mix of sort of sweet milk chocolate and really bitter dark chocolate. for some reason it only tastes like the nibs a little bit, with a much stronger actual chocolate flavor than the bitter earthiness and espresso roast. must be all the sweetness going on, this is sweet because black tuesday is sweet, its sweet because the vanilla is sweet, and its sweet because the bourbon barrel here is very sweet. its all a good sugar, but its hard to ignore, and it slows down the rate of drinking just as quickly as the alcohol here, which is strong, but not quite as strong as i expected it to be given the insane strength. not as thick as the others for some reason, its viscous no doubt, but its just not quite as coating and filling. this is a very special rarity, and i am very grateful to have gotten to share it with close friends.

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Photo of tewaris
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Chocolate Rain
Dang!
Thanks Andrew!!

Dark brown, clear, not much head yada yada. I thought Black Tuesday was liqueur like, Chocolate Rain is liquor like. Thin, boozy and hot, in the best way. Chocolate, vanilla, toffee... it tastes like one of those fancier candies.

It is so damn good, I would consider killing an entire bottle myself. Definitely. Now I said that it was thin... it's not thin in the sense of final gravity I guess, but because alcohol is such an excellent solvent, this beer “flows”. Just a great beer with marvelous complexity and deliciousness. Believe.

4.5, 4.5, 4.5, 4.5, 4.5

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Photo of mig100
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2015 vintage. 6oz pour in a Bruery snifter at The Bruery.

L: Pours with a light swirly mocha head. Oily blackness.

S: Intense aroma of milk and dark chocolate, dark fruit, figs, vanilla, oak, freshly baked cookies and smores. An exciting beer to whiff over and over.

T: Wow. Vanilla, brownies, chocolate and cookie dough hit at the front of the tongue, with oak and an almost white chocolate character at the back. There's some slight bitter stout roastiness and bourbon flavor in the mix, but it's barely detectable and it works well to balance out and dial down the sweetness.

F: 18.4% ABV... I don't understand how Bruery does it. Vanilla, brownie fudge and oak coat the tongue, and while you can feel a good amount of heat as it goes down... it's by no means harsh and finishes really clean for how big of a beer it is.

Overall: A well-rounded, stunningly delicious and decadent world-class barrel aged imperial stout.

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Photo of TrojanRB
4.49/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an inky black, with a finger of khaki head that quickly settled

Smells of vanilla, bourbon, some dark fruit (maybe plum)

More burnt sugar and chocolate in the taste. Surprisingly, not overly sweet

Smooth, somehow the 20% abv is totally hidden. Light burn on the finish

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Chocolate Rain from The Bruery
4.43 out of 5 based on 2,648 ratings.
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