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Lava | Ölvisholt Brugghús

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
91
outstanding
188 Reviews
THE BROS
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BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Ölvisholt Brugghús
Iceland | website

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
The active volcano Hekla is visible from the brewhouse door and occasionally, eruptions are visible from the Ölvisholt farm. The illustration resembles the view from the brewhouse door when an eruption occurs. Full-bodied, pitch black beer with a dense brown head. Richly flavored with notes of dark chocolate, roasted malt and smoke.

Added by stulowitz on 12-01-2008

BEER STATS
Reviews:
188
Ratings:
553
Avg:
4.09
pDev:
17.36%
 
 
Wants:
60
Gots:
59
For Trade:
2
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
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Reviews: 188 | Ratings: 553
Photo of Alieniloquium
3.79/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500 mL bottle poured into a mini snifter.

Appearance - Pours without a head. Black with slight transparency at the edges.

Smell - Quite smokey. Chocolate. Caramel.

Taste - Markedly less smoke. More dark chocolate and a rich caramel base. Some smoke definitely present, but nothing like the nose.

Mouthfeel - Medium body, maybe pushing the light side. No booze. Medium low carbonation.

Overall - I like the smoke balance. A lot in the nose, but more of the base stout in the taste.

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Photo of Samp01
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle. A deep dark black with a slowly dissipating brown head. Aroma of dark roasted malt, caramel, some mild dark fruit with a deep smoked essence. Taste is sweet dark roasted malt, some caramel ad mild dark fruity favors with a very distinct smoked flavor and mild bitterness. Palate is medium to full body, slightly creamy and oily with moderate carbonation. Finishes with a dark roasted caramel malt, dark fruit, ending with lingering bitter sweet smoked flavor and some alcohol. Smoked flavor and aroma are stronger as it warms up. Overall a very good, flavorful brew, very nice.

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Photo of JamesMN
3.71/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Super dark brown to the point of being black in color. Basically no head despite a vigorous pour but some tan residue on top.

Aroma: Dark fruit esters, alcohol, and dark malt. Mildly complex with a richness about it.

Taste: Immidiately hit with a bit of dark smoked malt but not nearly as intense as what follows. In fact, the flavor doesn't truly develop entirely until the finish and aftertaste. Finish is smooth and almost sweet with dark malt flavor. Aftertaste lends a huge smokey kick that slowly fades away. Very light bitterness throughout and the smoke flavor does the job of balancing out the sweet malt.

Mouthfeel: Lighter in body than its 9.4% ABV would suggest. Average carbonation and good drinkability for a beer with such strong smoked flavor.

Final Thoughts: If you like Imperial Stouts and smoked malt then Lava is the beer for you. Would I drink it again? Sure.

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Photo of mpyle
4.27/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Big dark tan head, creamy and with retention. Beer is opaque.

Sweet, roasty and smokey aroma. Smells of smoked meat.

Big smokey malt flavor initially. Any sweetness is well countered by the smoke and roast. Complex malty/smokey flavor though midmouth. A more assertive bitterness hits late, along with some alcohol flavors. Finishes slightly alcoholic but with a lot of smoke and roast carrying as well.

Fairly big body, low-moderate carbonation. Actually has a gentle creaminess on the tongue, and the alcohol warming in the finish is fairly subdued for the strength.

Smoke beers aren't my thing, but this beer is well made. Nice complexity of flavors, and well-controlled alcohol characteristics. And honestly the smoke is complimentary rather than overpowering. Best Icelandic beer I've ever had!

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Photo of jondeelee
4.29/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Lava opens to a thick, smoky stout aroma that smells heavily of campfire smoke, as well as ash, tobacco, peat, and chocolate malt. The dark, ashy notes are held lightly in check by caramels and toffees, molasses and near-burnt vanilla, as well as thick brown breads and deeply toasted wholegrain bread crust. There are also some lovely fruit esters, including fig, plum, raisin, berry, and prune, lending the beer a sugary underbelly that resembles a cross between a port and a thickly-syruped fruit cocktail. There’s also an alcoholic overtone that resembles a syrupy, sugary ice wine, though with more notes of maple syrup than grape. The aromas increase greatly in this syrupy sweetness as the bottle remains open, until after a few minutes the early campfire smoke and peat notes are almost gone. Overall, the beer smells wonderful, being a battle between heavy maple syrup, concentrated dark fruit extracts, and smoke, and while the sugars are perhaps a bit too strong, they’re still very alluring.

On the tongue, the beer opens with the same heavy campfire smoke, ash, tobacco, and peat note detected on the tongue. These dark, ashy notes are joined almost immediately by vanilla, caramel, toffee, and molasses, as well as the dark fruit esters (fig, raisin, prune, plum, and berry) noted in the nose. Here, however, the ashy, smoky notes don’t fade over time, but keep pace with the sugars for the duration of the mouthful, joined by thick brown breads, rising whole wheat dough, biscuit, and toast crust. In subsequent mouthfuls the sugars to tend to increase in volume, the tawny port and sweet, maple syrup-laden ice wine notes becoming stronger early in the mouthful, but the ashy notes still catch back up as the beer is held on the tongue and the sugars die off. The aftertaste is a continuation of the heavily sweet, campfire notes of the main mouthful, but here the campfire smoke and ash notes grow and grow, until the mouth seems full of blackness, with only a few bits of syrup left for balance. Mouthfeel is medium, and carbonation is medium.

Overall, this is excellent beer, the smoky notes blending well with what is obviously a very nice Imperial Stout in the first place. Fans of the style should definitely make this a must-try.

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Photo of Axnjxn
3.78/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle into a tulip. no bottling date apparent.

Pours a pitch black color with an inch thick beige head. Pretty attractive pour. Smell is smokey chocolate malts. Taste is an intense smokey taste. A bit too smokey in my opinion. The chocolate malts are still there but are overshadowed by the smoke. Not so easy to drink. Heavier side of medium bodied with medium carbonation. An almost creamy texture. Definitely not syrupy like other imp stouts.

Overall it's different, but not my favorite. I wouldn't have another but i'm glad to have tried it.

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Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500 ml bottle into snifter, no bottle dating. Pours pitch black color with a small dense tan head with decent retention, that reduces to a thin lace cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of big dark chocolate, roasted malt, cocoa, coffee, char, wood, smoke, toast, smoked meat, licorice, slight dark fruit, and roasted earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good balance and complexity of roasted and smoked notes; with good strength. Taste of big dark chocolate, roasted malt, cocoa, toast, coffee, char, smoke, wood, smoked meat, light licorice, light dark fruit, and roasted earthiness. Lingering notes of dark chocolate, roasted malt, char, smoke, wood, coffee, toast, licorice, and roasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice balance and complexity of dark roasted flavors; with moderate smoke flavor balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Light-medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a very creamy and fairly slick mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with hardly any warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is an excellent smoked imperial stout. All around nice balance and complexity of roasted flavors and moderate smoke; and very smooth to sip on. A very enjoyable offering.

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Photo of Oakenator
4.32/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a dark black color with some head. Veiled lacing leads to simple spotted.

S: Chocolate with a subtle sweetness.

T: Chocolate sweetness up front leads to a strong smoky flavor on the back. Some spices.

M: Has lots of body - malts provide a richness.

O: Really nice.

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Photo of magictacosinus
4.32/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I had been looking for this beer for as long as I can remember, and I really want to thank my friend for pointing out that Toronado Pub was tapping it, of all places. Poured into a tulip glass.

Pours a thick, charred viscous opaque black color. Literally no light shines through, not even at the liquid's edges when held against the light. There's a nicely toned mocha colored head that graces the top of the glass that's about 1.5 fingers large, but it actually dies down rather quickly and leaves no lacing, no bubbles, and not a ring of head to speak of halfway through consumption. It still maintained an appearance similar to cola, and the thickened feel did indeed fade with the carbonation's disappearance. Not bad, but not necessarily worth raving over.

The aroma makes me forget my disappointment with the beer's looks - this smells very fabulous, and definitely sets itself apart from the average RIS here. Dark chocolate, cherries, raisins, slightly smoked currants, vanilla, coffee, all coated underneath a cake-like batter sugary consistency. Not sure at all how this is "smoked" by any means (although according to the brewers, it is), but I supposed there's a little bit of charred phenols mixing with the sweetened, dark malts - but it's really, really subtle. The juicy, candied dark fruit flavor is not, however, and melded with the vanilla and chocolate, it's truly awesome.

The flavor actually has a lot less of the fruity, sugared consistency in the aroma, but it does take all of those flavors and melds them well rather than in a cloying, overtly sweet manner. There's a lot more of the roasted, slightly smoky character at the front, melding with fresh, jubilant coffee beans, chocolate, vanilla, a slight oaky sensation, and faded but present fruitiness, ranging from the light raisins to cherries. The finish is very calm, with no alcohol bite or burn to speak of. The flavors meld lightly with the dark malts and coffee flavor, and finish in an aftertaste that is only slightly astringent, yet thickened and full-bodied to the point of being a very easy drinking experience. Carbonation is good, despite what happened to the head. Everything is so well balanced here, which is crazy considering this is a big beer. Nothing is too sweet or too bitter, nor too roasted. Simply fantastic stuff.

I'm so glad I was able to find this! It was a great way to have my lunch in the bar with burgers that were cooked next door. The alcohol is well hidden and buzzed me out a bit by the end, but it was super relaxing and easy drinking as any great, strong stout is. Despite its thickness, there's nothing heavy about this, and it stands as a very versatile and flexible beer of its caliber, mainly due to its balanced yet flavorful presentation of ingredients. Awesome find - Iceland should hopefully keep producing more world class stouts like this.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark black with a hint of brown and a finger of frothy khaki-chocolate head. Fades fairly slowly.

S - Roasted chocolate and caramel malts, smoke, vanilla, molasses, black licorice, dark cocoa, coffee, dark fruits, and a bit of booze.

T - Chocolate and caramel malts, smoke, vanilla, black licorice, molasses, dark cocoa, roasted coffee, dark fruits, earthy hops, and a bit of booze.

M - Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth with a sweet, smoky, warming finish.

D - Nice smoked stout. Good overall balance and mouthfeel.

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Photo of Neorebel
4.08/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

"Lava" has the an appealing appearance similar to an espresso... it's the deepest shade of brown topped with a thin ring of tan colored froth. There does not seem to be much carbonation, if at all. Observed after the beer was finished, were some small patches of lacing clinging to the sides of the empty glass.

The aroma was very surprising to me, in that there was very much a burst of dark and sweet fresh fruit esters coming through the campfire smells typical to any smoked beer. The flavor itself however, did in fact lend itself mostly to earthiness and woody, charcoal smoke. There was also a savory aspect, like simple food cooked on open flames.

The mouthfeel is relatively light, as is the perceived alcohol heat, so, as log as you are predisposed to like smoked beers, this will go down very easily. Overall, I am excited to have a beer made in Iceland, and would recommend this to anyone into Rauchbiers. The smoke intensity rivals that of Schlenkerla... My only detractor is that the hoppiness in the beer, while tasty, may not be the most appropriate thing for the style. I may not have categorized this as a RIS in a blind tasting given the opportunity. I would love to have this again and try something else from this brewery as well.

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Photo of AltBock
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

16.9oz bottle with a drawing of a volcano erupting at the top and 3 shacks at the bottom of the oval. These little shacks are screwed. Over the drawing is a purple ribbon with the name of the beer. To the right of the drawing is the US Government warning and to the left is a paragraph that has a brief history of the brewery and a short description of the beer. Poured into a Cigar City Snifter.

Imagine starring down into the opening of an inactive volcano. That's how black the color of this beer was. Just pitch darkness. Holding the glass up to the light was a waste if time. There's no way light could penetrate this beer's solid black color. On top of this black brew was a short lived light mocha head of foam. At its height, it was about 1/2 an inch. I guessing the head of foam had somewhere to be so it only stuck around for a few seconds. It only managed to leave behind a faint string of rings and one single spot of lace.

It was smoky, but not Rauchbier smoky. Under the cloud of smoke, I was able to pick up smoked malts, smoked wood, dark chocolate, a hint of roasted coffee beans, smoked meats like bacon, a whiff of green olives, a drop of caramel and toffee, and then the smell finishes up with some dark fruits like plums and raisins. I really enjoyed the aroma. It seemed like there was a new aroma around every corner. The aroma's smoked aspect added a really nice touch.

Not only was the taste smoky, but I also detected some roasted elements in here as well. It was smoky up front. The smoke let through the roasted elements shine through first. In the beginning, there was roasted coffee beans, dark roasted malt, and dark chocolate. After the taste got that our of the way, in comes all the smoke. This part of that taste featured campfire smoke, smoked meats, a little green olive, smoked wood, smoked hops, and then the taste ended with a subtle dark fruitiness. The roasted flavors couldn't control the beer's smoked flavors. Smoky, but not overly smoky.

The mouthfeel was medium to full bodied, chewy, and with a full flavored smoky aftertaste. You'll find more smoky flavors like smoked wood, campfire smoke, smoked meats, roasted coffee beans, and dark chocolate. The smoke was so thick that it will take a few glasses of water to wipe clean your mouth of this smoke.

A smoked Imperial Stout from Iceland? That sounds like an experiment or a novelty beer. It is not any of those! It's truly a really good Imperial Stout. It has a little uniqueness to it that separates it from everybody else's Imperial Stout. The only problem I found with this beer was the steep price. It was in the $10-$13 range for this 16oz bottle. If you want to try an Imperial Stout that's a little unique, pry open your wallet for this winner.

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Photo of devlishdamsel
4.72/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow. This was amazing. Let me begin by saying that I absolutely have hated every smoked beer I have ever had prior to this one. Perhaps something regarding the lava and natural way this one was created made a huge impact? This is one of the best stouts I have ever imbibed. So very textural and viscous. It was the satin of beer; the texture was perfect. The taste was almost as good. I got some slight smokey notes but unlike the abrasive smoky beers i had prior, these were subtle hints. There was a huge malty, chocolate presence with a hint of salt( in the best way possible) as well. As far as a stout goes, does it really get better than this? I understand this was a rare beer, but id be in heaven if it was a regular occurrence!

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.29/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is definitely a thick stout. In flavor profile and on the body. There is a good touch of molasses on here, but what I really like most of all is the kind of berry tone that is really showing nicely after a little while of it being opened. The smoke mellows at the same time the berry thing shows up. Body is thick. This beer stays consistent. And I like it a lot. The price point is pretty high, which is somewhat of a discouraging factor, but I am happy to drop the coin.

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Photo of Tblecptn
4.84/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Dark smokey beer and 9.4%. Smokiest beer I have ever had, so much so that its like drinking a campfire. That's the best comparison I can make. The taste of the beer goes through so many many flavors ending on a smokey flavor. Don't try drinking a different beer after having the lava. It won't compare and you be left wanting another.

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Photo of alexgash
4.21/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

500 ml bottle.

Inky dark brown body. Viscous. Pinkie finger of tiny-bubbled, whipped, peanut brown head. Great lacing. Charred barley, mocha coffee, light molasses, figs, tobacco, a little chocolate, and light campfire smoke.

Roasted coffee bitterness starts off. Dark chocolate and sweet caramel fill in. Milk chocolate and molasses show up. Earthy, with notes of tobacco, licorice, and flint near the finish. Faint peaty smokiness. Finishes with lingering herbal bitterness, caramel, and dark chocolate. Medium-full body with a slightly oily feel. Nice.

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Photo of GeezLynn
3.62/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Lava delivers a pretty sinister appearance – jet black with a modest but long-lived head. Nose shows an assertive woodsy smoke along with plenty of rich roasted maltyness and something I associate with damp soil.

The dominant flavor is an overly bitter charred roast accompanied by a drying smokyness that lingers through the finish. Flashes of cinnamon or some woody spice figure in there somewhere, along with a mild alcohol burn. This is a bit harsh for me. It could use a little sweetness to balance all that ashyness. Mouthfeel is pretty nice - dense, with good mouth coat. Carbonation is medium high and slightly prickly.

Not bad and I liked the level of smoke. Still, much too rough around the edges. Maybe this could mellow into something more enjoyable, but as is, I'll go for a Nils Oscar Rokaporter as a better Scandinavian smoked option.

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Photo of brentk56
4.29/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Pours a very dark brown capped by a tan head that delivers some decent lacing

Smell: Smells like a campfire with dark bread and roasty malt elements

Taste: Opens with the black bread and caramel flavors that are buttressed, in the middle, by the campfire smoke flavors; big malt and smoked elements in the finish

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with moderate carbonation

Overall: I wouldn't have pegged this as a RIS but really enjoyed the beer and its smoke elements

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Photo of kojevergas
3.43/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Acquired at a local SoCal beer store for $12.00. 9.4% ABV confirmed. 1 pint .9 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard unbranded pressure cap served into a New Belgium stem-glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are high given its current ratings.

Served after a brief rest following its removal from the refrigerator. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

Paired with salted pretzel twists.

A: Pours a half finger rich tan colour head of nice cream and thickness, but below average (~1 minute) retention. Body colour is a nontransparent opaque solid black. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Appealing, if not up to par with recent examples of the style I've had. It looks as it should. No lacing as the head recedes.

Sm: Wood smoke, light bacon, dark malts, and maybe chocolate malt. The smoke is overwhelming. Licorice, charcoal, campfire. A light vinous note. My broken nose has trouble detecting anything beneath the dominant smoke; all apologies, lads. An appealing aroma of moderate strength.

T: Dominant smoke - but it's subtle and works well throughout, never overwhelming the palate or destroying the balance. Nice subtle woody tones throughout. Creamy chocolate notes help balance the rough smoke. A bit of coffee, but relatively little. No real caramel, which is a refreshing change. Not at all ashy. I get a hint of licorice/anise, but it fades. The wood notes are a highlight here, working well with the sweet chocolate. Pretty well balanced, with notable complexity and even subtlety - a rare trait in a smoked beer. I like it. In terms of flaws, there is a smoky wood rot note in the late second act that bothers me. This really holds it back, but it's still an enjoyable beer. It's too bitter, more from the roast and smoke than from its rather modest hopping.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Even a touch creamy. Good carbonation. Pretty good palate presence. Suits the flavour profile generally, but doesn't feel custom-tailored to it.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable, especially for a smoked beer. I think they fused the rauchbier and imperial stout elements well, but it didn't come off fantastic. An intriguing beer and one I wouldn't mind revisiting with some age on it, but I doubt I'll buy it again. Well priced for what it is, especially as an import. I'll have little trouble killing the bottle by meself.

High B-

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Photo of ryan1788a5
4.14/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

500ml bottle poured into a large snifter.

A: Black on the pour with a tan head that retains fairly well. When it does start to settle, it can be re-invigorated with some swirling of the glass. Lacing is sparse, spotty, and patchy.

S: Licorice, coffee candy, fudge, dark chocolate cake, black cherry and wild berries. Smoked malts lend a pervasive charcoal and campfire scent that rounds out the nose nicely.

T: Layered smoked malt flavors are the focal point of this beer. Charcoal, soot, campfire, and ash provide a steady foundation, and everything else seems to play off it. Rich dark chocolate cake, bitter dark chocolate, chocolate mousse. Slightly woody. Roasted coffee beans and black coffee. Black cherry and berry esters are hidden deep within all the roasted and smoked malts. Finishes with bakers chocolate, chocolate truffles, and light hints of wood and lingering smoke.

M: Thick in body. Chewy, viscous, and mouth-coating. Silky creaminess. Light prickling carbonation.

O: A very nice smoked imperial stout. Sip this one slowly. Once the beer opens up and the palate adjusts to the smoke, there's some nice complexity to be found underneath. I do believe this is the first beer I've ever had coming from Iceland. It's a quality brew for sure, and very much on par with similar beers I've had coming out of Denmark, Norway, and Finland.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.04/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Hello Iceland! Welcome to the craft beer scene. And you do so with aggression, boldness, and masculine qualities. ...I like it!

Their Lava Imperial Stout pours with a rich and lumbering patience. Dark (lack of) color is the deepest of brown that black hues pronounce. Largely oqaque, the dark beer impedes any light. Its patient and light carbonaiton slowly releases a skirt of foam that looks like coffee creme after the beer settles. Light lacing leaves random pockets of foam on the glass in its wake.

Strong smoke rises to the nose and strikes the olfactory senses with as much of a sense of barbecue as it does stout. But at its core, the scent of strong roast coffee, bitter chocolate, and walnut woodiness provide the supporting aromas that prop up the smoky cloud.

But flavors take a different turn- the taste of French-pressed coffee, chocolate and walnut command the taste, while reigning in the smoke flavors to the point where only moderate nuances reside. Sure the smoke makes its mark with an overall meaty taste, but its succulence brings rise to the choco-coffee blend that so irresistible. Bittered with as much roasted grain as hops, the finish culminates with a toasty-dry taste and semi-ashy dryness.

Full bodied early, the beer quickly digresses to moderately weighted texture that resembles apprehensive lightness in middle palate nearly causes the beer to seem light or thin. But just enough soft malt structure carries the beer to its powdery finish of pleasant warmth, semi-dryness, and smooth bite.

Lava is an exceptional beer, but you have got to like those campfire flavors and aromas from start to finish. Its level of smoke rivals traditional German rauchbiers, but fold in the complexities of imperial stout at every turn. It's not fore everyone. But for those savory freaks like me, this beer is built for me!

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Photo of Beer-A-Lot
4.04/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Served on tap at Birch.

A - Beautiful head. Nice black color.

S - Burnt roasted smells, subtle, appealing.

T - Taste is of burnt, roasted flavors, woody.

M - Full bodied, very nice.

O - A very nice, tasty RIS. Will drink again if I have the chance.

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Photo of Kremlock
4.45/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a DARK coloured beer. Held to the lamp I could not see any hues or light coming threw. Head was a espresso brown. Head stability is low with low to none lacing.

S: Dark chocolate, roasting coffee beans, burnt wood.

T: WOW, flavours are great here. Same as smell but there is a hint of cooking caramel. Like making candy toffee at home. There are hints of plum and raisins but they are on the dry then sweet side. Bitterness is high and well balanced with the malt complexity of this beer. The smoke flavour is so complementing and I can totaly have a second one after this.

M: Medium-High carbonation, full body, snapy on the tongue, bitter finish with a hint of sweetness that tries to sneak by. Smokiness is totally complementing and does not get in the way.

O: I am so going to go get an other bottle. This is such a great well rounded, full flavoured beer.

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Photo of sommersb
4.14/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Tasted On: 01-21-2013
Freshness: Not indicated
Packaging: 500ml brown bottle, pry-cap
Glassware: Snifter
Purchased: Received in a trade

Black and opaque in color, topped by a small tan head that fades fast. Lacing is low.

Aromas are of dark, roasted malts, smoked wood and chocolate. Also some dark fruit sweetness. The smell is not strong, but is balanced between the different aspects and is pleasing.

The taste starts with dark, bittersweet chocolate, then features smoked meats and heavily roasted coffee. There's a good balance with the bittering from the roasted grains and the maltiness. It has that campfire flavor that most smoked beers exhibit.

The mouthfeel is comprised of low carbonation and a big, strong body. The finish has the sweetness of malts and chocolate, but also the bitter aspects of coffee and smoked wood.

Overall, a really enjoyable sipping beer -- it reminds me much of the local favorite Yazoo Sue smoked porter. The smoke in Lava is a nice addition that is not over-played.

Thanks to baybum for the try!

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Photo of decimator
3.93/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

500ml bottle poured into a pint glass. ABV 9.4%.

A - Poured a near black with a 1cm brown head. One of the darkest beers I've ever seen. Head reduce to some surface bubbles. No lacing.

S - Coffee and charcoal.

T - Standard stout flavour with lots of smoke. I'm having a hard time picking out the various flavours because of its smokiness. Burnt toast and hops in the finish. The ABV is very well hiden.

M - Medium-heavy body, average carbonation, nice thick syrupy texture that isn't too sticky, dry finish. Very nice mouthfeel overall.

O - Easy to drink for sure. I think the mouthfeel helps this beer a lot.

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Lava from Ölvisholt Brugghús
91 out of 100 based on 188 ratings.
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  • Return of the Belgian Beer Fest

    BeerAdvocate Brings its All-Belgian Fest to Portland, Maine on September 17, 2016. Tickets are on sale now.

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