Shenandoah Chocolate Donut Beer | Shenandoah Brewing Co.

79 Ratings
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Shenandoah Chocolate Donut BeerShenandoah Chocolate Donut Beer

Brewed by:
Shenandoah Brewing Co.
Virginia, United States

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by hopsaplenty on 07-09-2005

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 79 |  Reviews: 74
Photo of maximum12
1.06/5  rDev -69.6%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Thanks to a fine BA for sending a bottle of this my way, always up for a good stout & well, always up for chocolate. Meld the two & I'm a happy guy.

Pours...oh, oh. Foam splatters & rises like a vengeful god, & I can barely trickle half the bottle before I have to give it a rest. Hopefully just over-carbonated? Probably not. The nose is...bad. Bad. Not right bad.

This beer is obviously infected. It tastes like a chocolate donut that's been smeared with bad mayo & left in the sun for a while. Absolutely, totally, completely god-awful. I'd like to try this beer in its real state, but the Godzilla of infections has rendered this the worst beer I have ever had. One sip. Now I'm going to go search out some steel wool to scrub my tongue. Too bad. I was looking forward to this one.

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Photo of PDXHops
1.42/5  rDev -59.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

12 oz bottle, poured into a Duvel tulip.

Looks pretty good, cloudy deep brown with red highlights and a nice cap of frothy light tan foam. Nice retention and lacing. Sadly, the pleasant part of the experience ends here.

Smells exceedingly, shockingly sweet and tastes even moreso. I don't detect any donut, but there's plenty of chocolate- Yoohoo, Hershey's sauce, melted chocolate chips. A weird artificial flavor. Hints of dark fruit and maybe a hint of roasted malt, but this beer is overwhelmingly sweet. Did any of the sugar actually get fermented here? Sickly sweet (and slightly sour) chocolate lingers and lingers. Any time you have to grab an emergency bag of Cheetos for some saltiness to counteract all the sweetness in a beer, that's not a good thing.

Overall impression: I felt like I needed to go to the dentist after this. Sugar bomb beers are not for me. Drain pour.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
1.59/5  rDev -54.4%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Bottle: Poured a dirty deep brown cloudy ale with a super large bubbly head with average retention. Aroma of sour chocolate malt is quite disgusting. Taste is also a disgusting mix between some unrefined roasted malt with lingering sweetness. Body is quite thin with great carbonation which is probably due to the infection. Too bad this was so infected because I kind of was looking forward to the concept. Another one to add to the re-rate list I guess.

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Photo of nickd717
1.63/5  rDev -53.3%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

12oz bottle via trade.

Pours dark brown with a small off-white head. Fades very quickly and looks a little strange. Chunks floating in the beer.

Aroma is very metallic and a little tart. Chocolate in the background. Infection is evident.

Flavor is Entenmann's chocolate donuts and sour infection. Not good.

Palate is wrecked from the likely infection. Medium-bodied and sour with a lasting bad finish.

Not good. No-hesitation drain pour for this one. Real bummer because I wanted to try this novelty beer in its intended state.

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Photo of JDV
1.79/5  rDev -48.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

Big thanks to kmweaver on Ratebeer for hooking me up with this beer!! <br>
Pours almost opaque black with a nice sized tan head. Smell is very chocolately donut like and a big in your face ash-like chemically waxy chocolate smell reminiscent of the chocolate donuts youÂ’d get from a vending machine but rolled in ashes. Unique flavor of waxy chemically chocolate probably from the "essence of donut". Not quite sure what to think about this one...Glad I got to try it, and although on first sip I really liked it, after about 1/2 a bottle it was overwhelming and the artificial flavor became off-putting. Somewhat surprised at the high ratings but big points for uniqueness, either way. Still a drainpour for me...

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Photo of Metalmonk
1.9/5  rDev -45.6%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

The very concept of this beer rules. "Chocolate donuts" + "stout". Should equal "decandent & delicious". I love chocolate donuts, although I don't eat them often because I love them so much. This one comes with some built-in high expectations...I hope it delivers.

A gentle pour surprisingly results in way too much foam...several fingers thick, it takes a long time before I'm able to pour the rest of the beer. A second extremeeeley slow pour offers a soapy off-white head and a super-dark chocolately black color. Thick walls of lace are formed as the head slowly drops off. Looks really nice.

Aroma reminds of some sub-par U.S. stouts I've had. But worse. It's metallic, very much reminding of copper...wet pennies, actually. Very mineral. Despite trying, I find nothing redeemable in the aroma. I pray to the beer gods that there's a decent beer in here somewhere...

Eegads...this stout is awful. The metallic aroma carries over into the flavor. I feel like I have a mouthfeel of thin, cold, liquid steel. It's highly mineral, with hardly a trace of chocolate, sugar glaze or fried dough to be found. The metallic taste gives way to a more plastic flavor as it warms. There's also a very fake, artificial sweetness here. Also kind of sour, reminding of an infected homebrew batch. Some alcohol peeks through, but without anything substantial to back it up, it's bothersome.

Mouthfeel? Who cares? At this point nothing can save this stout, and it's a little too fluffy, too carbonated, so...whatever.

This gives a bad name to our friend, the chocolate donut. Shame on Shenandoah. And who is this Dr. Dremo? I don't see his name anywhere on the label. Perhaps he's too embarrassed to claim responsibility. Seriously, this is awful stuff. Avoid.

[Somehow I missed seeing this in my area, so my pal and fellow BA msubulldog25 sent a bottle from Oregon. From VA, to OR, and back to VA. Whatever works...thanks, Brian, for the chance to try it out.]

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Photo of msubulldog25
2.01/5  rDev -42.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Thanks to wickedpete, I was able to gather several of these curiosities. A couple months ago the buzz around this one was pretty high, was it warranted?

Poured from a 12 oz bottle to a pint glass. Label on this one has a home-spun feel (re: low-budget), a low-res image of donuts hides behind the brewery logo and some almost indecipherable text ('Government Warning'? Who needs it...).

A: Fizzy khaki-colored head rises rapidly to over a finger high, drops nearly as quickly to a patchy film of percolating tiny bubbles. One of the noisier beers I can recall, crackling softly even after the head dissipates. A deep brown that shows hints at a maroon-cherry redness when held to light.

S: What an odd has a processed 'chocolate' aroma, a powdery confectioner's sugar, a little caramel, and a quirky kool-aid lemon-lime(?). Maybe iced tea? A strange artificial berry? This is my third one of these I've tried (the other two in March, soon after receiving), I'm now somewhat accustomed to this smell, yet I'm still not sure how to describe it. I really am not sure how to grade it either, as I alternate between loving and detesting it from whiff to whiff...'3.0' is its score for me, but this unusual beer is anything but 'average'.

T: As strange as the smell is, the taste is...well...the taste is 'different'. A waxy cocoa hits upfront, followed by hints of fruity, semi-tart berries (raspberries, maybe?). Backing is a mildly sweet milk chocolate; there's a cake-y, yeasty quality that bears some semblance to 'donut' though the cheap/stale variety. Sounds good in theory, but this stout doesn't deliver...

M: Crazy, cola-like carbonation that's mouth-filling and, ultimately, burp-inducing (over and over...and over). Despite this bubbliness, mouthfeel has a thinness and that fake chocolate coats and lingers far too long, all over the mouth and across the lips. Toothbrush?

D: Having had three of these (I guess I keep hoping I'll find something I like about it...), I can officially say this is one I don't enjoy. I hate wasting beer, any beer, but this became my first drain pour in a very long time. Try some (you may really like it, as others have); me, I'm finally done with trying...

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Photo of number1bum
2.17/5  rDev -37.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Got 2 bottles of this a month or so ago from krisandajt. Thank you sir! Chocolate donut stout...hmm, now that sounds intriguing.

Pours a semi-dark brown with reddish hues at the edges. Head is two inches of fizzy tan foam. Keeps a thin lace and leaves a splash here and there on the sides.

Smell is initially of sour cherries and vinegar...I had to do a double take, but yes, that's what it is. Chocolate donut? Where? I do get a bit of chocolate and some roasted malt behind the sour, but this is not an appealing nose at all.

Taste also has a touch of sourness but not a vinegar quality like the nose. There is more chocolate flavor here, or more like cocoa powder I'd say, but still not a ton. A bit of coffee too. Sour cherries again seem way out of place, but there is some redeeming value in the modest cocoa flavor. Not much, but some. Some earthy hops in the finish.

Mouthfeel is pretty light bodied and very spritzy, with very active carbonation. An alka seltzer like feel. Fail.

This is my second bottle of this and the first was not very good either, although this one is worse. Therefore I'm being a little bit more generous than I'd be if I were judging on only this one bottle. Joe gave me these about a month ago and I didn't get the sense he had bought them long ago, although there is no best by date on the bottles. Still, I can't imagine these are very old. Actually the sour cherry flavor isn't all that bad, but it still seems way out of place and in the smell it's horrible. Just not a very good beer, and certainly no chocolate donut. I wish I had one to cleanse my palate, in fact.

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Photo of RustyDiamond
2.44/5  rDev -30.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured a nice 2 fingers of white froth into my SA BA glass. Very dark brown/black in the glass. Aroma...uh...chocolate donuts?
Taste was super sweet...all chocolate donut. And not like a regular donut but those sugary glazed chocolate cake donuts from Dunkin Donuts. Did not care for this, at all.

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Photo of FtownThrowDown
2.75/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

First off, this has to be just a novelty beer. No where in the nose or the smell does it resemble a chocolate donut. Pours a translucent brown in color. Smell is slight chocolate, but there's another scent that is interfering with it. Can't quite figure out what it is. Taste is thin, watery and again, not decadent chocolate. The only thing chocolate donut about this offering is its name.
Close to a drainpour. Hoping that I had a bad bottle, but nothing tasted "infected".

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Photo of mikey711
2.87/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Thanks to Bmanning for hooking me up with a couple of bottles.

A: Very dark brown/deep mahogany. Tan head with tightly packed bubbles on top. Good head retention sitting at amount a quarter of an inch thick but no lacing at all.

S: It certainly smells like a chocolate donut. In fact it reminds me of those glazed entenmanns donuts. It is sugar sweet and reminds me a bit of cake batter and vanilla glaze.

T: Again some of that cakiness comes through. Vanilla frosting/ glazed sugar and a bread. There is an off flavor sort of metallic tasting or almost like tuna fish which was strange.

M: Slightly rough around the edges and a bit light in body.

D: Atleast this beer is what it says it is. Dont come in exprecting a ton of roastiness because its not there. It is a fun concept and does have its moments, but ultimately falls flat.

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Photo of Thorpe429
2.95/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Bottle courtesy of bmanning in a recent "not my favorite beer" trade.

Poured a very dark brown with a fairly-nice off-white head and a bit of lacing. The smell was of moderately-dark chocolate as well as a little bit of cream and some roasted malt. The taste was quite similar, although there was some sort of off-tasting astringent bitterness that I couldn't quite identify. This affected the mouthfeel, which was otherwise nice and creamy. Drinkability was on the low side. Definitely a beer worth trying--very interesting.

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Photo of Jefe73
3/5  rDev -14%

Photo of thebouch01
3/5  rDev -14%

Photo of ChadQuest
3/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dark brown that is fairly opaque with a finger of light tan head.
How the heck did they do this, the aroma instantly smells exactly like a chocolate donut, bready dough with sweet chocolate frosting. Same thing with the flavors, i have rarely had something match so closely what it wants or claims to be. The flavors have a bit of hops in there that distract a bit, but other then that i can't say to much other then chocolate donut is whats in this bottle.

An Average beer, i could give it points for being exactly what the labels says, but i can't, very interesting, but a one time and done beer.

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Photo of toddhett
3.05/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I found it a little difficult to review this beer. I don't love it as an "American Stout," but I think that the flavor is interesting, and I am glad that I tried it.

Appearance - Poured with a tan head of small, defined bubbles. Not creamy. Head faded rather quickly. The beer itself is opaque and almost completely black.

Smell - Certainly has the bready, semi-chocolate smell of a chocolate donut, but there was also a bit of astringency in the aroma that I did not like.

Taste - Some bread, a little astringency, but otherwise, I certainly agree with the chocolate donut description. Again, I don't know what makes the beer astringent, but I do not like that aspect of it.

Mouthfeel - I like the thickness of this beer. It's not syruppy, but the body is in line with its appearance (I'd say style, but I'm not exactly sure how to categorize its style).

I would not drink more than one of these at a time, but I think that it is a fun beer to share with people.

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Photo of KAP1356
3.1/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle received in a trade with 321jeff. Poured into a mini snifter as I was tasting this with my girlfriend (who brought my attention to this beer after seeing a spotlight on it on the Food Network).

A - Black as can be expected. Head recedes to a slightly off-white boundary where glass meets beer. Pretty common for a stout.

S - Very sweet. Chocolate is the main component with a slight vanilla undertone. Malty and slight caramel aromas also reach out to entice my already intrigued senses.

T - Well the chocolate portion certainly delivers. However I am quite disappointed with a lack of any "donut" taste at all. Chocolate is the main star with vanilla and caramel in the back palate. I am assuming that the vanilla undertones is supposed to relay the idea of "donut" to the taster. Honestly, this reminds me of a lighter version of Southern Tier;s Choklat.

M - Very smooth with a slight carbonation feel towards the end. Smooth and creamy for the most part.

D - I have no idea what the ABV is on this beer, but if I was in the mood for a dessert beer or some type of sweet beer to accompany a meal, this would be a good grab.

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Photo of TheViolator666
3.13/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle poured into pint glass.

A: Dark brown but less than opaque in color. Decent two finger light brown head that leaves minimal lacing.

S: Smell has a slight presence of roasted malt and a ton of sugar sweetness. Undesirable and bizarre "bubblegum" esters as well.

T: Tastes indeed like the chocolate shell of a white cake chocolate donut, however that bubblegum flavor also pulls through. Very sweet chocolate and a slight roasted maltiness, no hop presence. Alcohol is present in the aftertaste.

M/D: Had an average body and a fair amount of carbonation.

Very artificial. This is a very cool concept for a beer, but I feel could be done better.

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Photo of ClevoPiwo
3.17/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark brown color, nearly black, but not opaque. The head is moderate, and pours as a frothy ring on the outside of the glass. When held up to the light, the near black color gives way to some lighter brown highlights.

The smell is very sweet, with a minimal roasted malt presence and practically no hops. Overall, the aroma is very similar to bubble gum - very sweet. There are some hints of chocolate, a bit of fruit and a slight alcohol presence, but this is largely overshadowed by the bubble gum scent.

The taste is similar to the smell, and rather 1-dimensional. Not much bitterness and nearly no hops. There is a definite chocolate flavor, with a hint of fruit, but once again there is a dominant bubble gum flavor that comes from the sweetness. The finish is a bit better, exhibiting some roasted malt in the aftertaste.

Overall, this isn't the worst beer, it just doesn't taste much like an American stout. It is overmuch sweet, and the resultant bubble gum flavor is very off putting. Would have liked to see more of a hop character and a more accented roasted malt presence.

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Photo of dtx00
3.25/5  rDev -6.9%

Photo of Beejay
3.25/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to krisandajt for the opportunity to taste this brew!

A:Pours a muddy brown. In the glass it is a very deep brown, and there is loads of carbonation.. slowly sinking, but still a good finger or two of it. Looks mighty fine.

S: Roasted malt, chocolate, a little bite from the hops. And something else in there that is a little sweet. Not sure what it is, but I like to think it is a cake dough with sprinkles.

T: I get a tart taste right off the bat, maybe I need to ease into this one a bit.. The aftertaste is cake dough, and dried powdery sprinkles. What a weird weird beer this is. Aftertaste is definitely Chocolate Donut.

M: I feel like this one is over carbonated. Fairly easy going down.

D: One was enough, and I am glad I had the opportunity to try it. Maybe my taster is just off, but there is a tart sweetness to it that I am not fond of. However the aftertaste is exactly what is advertised.

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Photo of mikesgroove
3.28/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

With much hype surrounding this one for a little while, I was very anxious to try it. First off, the concept just seemed to be interesting. Also of note was at the Atlanta Cask event I tried a chocolate donut stout that was by far the best thing I had there, and if this were even close, I would trade for case of it. Pulled it out of the fridge and poured it into an oversized wine glass. The pour was very full, with a huge tan head perhaps four inches high rising up over the top of it immediately. I was actually quite surprised by the first look of it to be honest. A deep dark black then took over from the color, which was essentially opaque. The head fell and left behind a thin layer of perhaps a quarter inch and some decent side glass look to it. There was an audible fizz to it, which showed it was carbonated, but scared me coming from a stout!

The smell was spot on for a krispy kreme chocolate donut. It was humorous actually that it smelled that much like it. Nevertheless, the bottle says no preservatives, which is great, however this thing reeked of artificial flavoring. Just the sugar cheap donut smell, you know what I mean. Not the rich chocolate malt you would expect. Noting much of note in the aroma, perhaps some light grain, but that was really about all there was. The flavor was way to light to call this a stout, in fact, it was on the light side for a porter to be honest. Just not a full bodied kind of beer I guess. The flavor was sugary but not terribly so, just very fake tasting, like it was a forced flavor. Some light dryness in the finish, and a huge carbonation profile here. Tons of carbonation, which probably lended it to feeling even lighter. One thing of note was a good stout would get better as it warmed, but this did not seem to. The carbonation died down, but the flavors did as well, and when it at about room temperature it lost a lot of that artificial flavor and what was left a light roasted malt that really was nothing too terribly special. It was fairly drinkable though as all the flavors were light and it had virtually no alcohol in it.

Overall, it was a bit of a let down I have to be honest. Just too light and artificial for me. Not a bad novelty, and my mother-in-law love's this one if that counts for anything, but unfortunately, I will have to pass on it. Better luck next time.

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Photo of jaluria
3.28/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

The unusual name caught my attention, but with a single sip I could see why they chose that name.

Appeared black with a frothy head that was tan colored and left behind quite a bit of lacing. Moderate level of carbonation that generated nice small bubbles along the surface. Aromas of sugar, fried bread, and soda. The taste was very much like regular soda with loads of sweetness that makes you feel like your teeth are rotting only this has alcohol in it. Overwhelming sweetness gets to be too much, like drinking a donut and so the drinkability is low. Slightly oily and viscous in my mouth giving it a nice texture. It's the lack of anything to offset the sweetness that hurts this beer. If there were some hops or spices to counteract the sweetness, it would be more complex and somewhat more balanced while remaining a sweet stout.

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Photo of badbeer
3.36/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown with a beige head and decent retention. Chocolate, ashy, and roasty aroma. Taste was a little metallic, had some chocolate and bready notes, somewhat similar to chocolate glazing. High carbonation and light body. Decent beer, but I couldn't have too much of it.

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Photo of largadeer
3.36/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Black with brown highlights and a khaki head - pretty standard stuff here. Head retention is fair.

Smell: I guess it shouldn't come as too much of a surprise, but this does actually smell like a chocolate donut. It's got that sickly sweet, highly processed chocolate aroma you'd expect to smell upon walking into a donut shop. It's appetizing for a split second, but becomes cloying in time.

Taste & mouthfeel: I was expecting this to be cloying and gross based on the aroma, but it's actually got a semblance of balance. Flavors of chocolate, vanilla and sugary dough are still rampant, but it's got a pleasing dryness in the backbone and a surprising coffee kick in the finish.

Drinkability: Fun to try once but I can't see myself seeking this out again.

Notes: Gimmicky? Yes, absolutely, but to my surprise it's really not bad.

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Shenandoah Chocolate Donut Beer from Shenandoah Brewing Co.
3.49 out of 5 based on 79 ratings.
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