Vermont Spruce Stout | Rock Art Brewery

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Vermont Spruce StoutVermont Spruce Stout
Vermont Spruce StoutVermont Spruce Stout

Brewed by:
Rock Art Brewery
Vermont, United States

Style: Foreign / Export Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
None provided.

User Reviews & Ratings
Reviews: 12 | Ratings: 50
Photo of rand
3.38/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

22 oz bomber into a snifter

Jet black in color, as an easy pour yields a stiff, off-white head that leaves scant lacing.

Vintage stout aromas as notes of carob, molasses, and burnt sugar swirl. Maybe a touch of pumpkin spice at the edge of the bouquet.

Flavor profile follows the nose, with strong, roasty, toasty, earthy tones dominating. Bitter, unsweetened cocoa and oak play against molasses and licorice. Leans more bitter than sweet, and there's very little of the added spruce or pumpkin spice. Has a unusually water complexion for the style, which leads to a relatively short finish with lingering bitter residuals.

Not a bad drinking stout, but nothing in here justifies categorizing the brew as an export stout, while the added ingredients do not impart nuances of flavor or depth.

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Photo of BeerAndGasMasks
3.56/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

From the bottle, it pours a dark brown with a light tan head that lasts a while. Some lacing on the glass. A bit of the forest in the nose, along with roasted and black malts. Taste is similar, but i don't notice any spruce or piney flavors in the taste.

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Photo of beerloserLI
3.53/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A light black pour with a frothy tan head. The nose is malt and sugars and not terribly floral. A big roasted malt flavor hits on the very first sip. A sweet and sugary flow that finishes rather bitter. A good flavor mix that builds at it warms. Nice notes of roasted malts, sweet pumpkin pure and bitter pine. The pumpkin is pretty subtle and I really start to get more of the spice notes of cinnamon and nutmeg. The pine really seems to add to the hoppy feel of the stout. The mouth feel is on the lighter side but the flavors really hold up.

Overal, pretty decent stuff. An interesting brew with lots of flavors to keep your palate guessing.

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Photo of Holderness
3.86/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a fairly dark brown that is noticeably paler than most stouts I've had. Two finger tan head retains well but leaves only a moderate lacing on the glass, instead staying as a single mass as the beer in the glass diminishes. Smells strongly of a forest of conifers, with notes of smokey maltiness, juniper berries, scotch, and brown bread. Taste is much the same, but with a strong hoppy bitterness and remarkably little of the bakers chocolate and coffee that I've grown accustomed to in stouts. Hard to discern the pumpkin -- I think the malts drown out the taste entirely. Definitely has a strong, backwoods feel to it that might be too bitter for some. Moderate carbonation. Overall, makes for an authentic feeling and tasting brew that goes well with those long winter nights in the northeast. Not so sure about elsewhere, though....


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Photo of sandsonik
4.06/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

L - looks black, until held to the light. Very small head which quickly disappears. Looks like an imperial stout.
S- roasted malt, definitely get the pine and something undefinable, reminds me of melon but must be the pumpkin.
T - very piney finish, sweet mid sip. I can't say I taste pumpkin. There is the suggestion of coffee even though I don't think this has any coffee. Different, to be sure. Pleasant, almost too bitter on the finish.
F - thin mouthfeel, yet not a lot of carbonation either.
O - I don't hate it. I don't dislike it. I like it but I'm not sure I love it - I'd like to date her longer and find out. She's definitely not like the other stouts I've met! Not a world class stout but definitely worth my time. 8% ABV completely hidden.

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Photo of NotAlcoholicJustAHobby
3.99/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

L-Pours black with a half inch cream colored head. There is spotty lacing and the initial head recedes to a half centimeter ring.
S-The smell is sweet malty and almost fruity.
T- Starts out malty with light bitterness. If the pumpkins have any presence it is faintly melon like flavor which fades quickly as the herbal finish of the spruce tips takes over. Definitely a different flavor profile than I am used to among stouts. Neither sweet nor bitter but a good middle ground.
F-Mouthfeel is adequate for a stout, but not the highlight of the brew. Carb is medium which makes it feel a little lighter than it could be.
O- This one is a different take on a stout, but one that is well worth giving a shot.

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Photo of metter98
3.65/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: The beer is black when viewed from afar but upon closer inspection the edges of the glass are clear dark brownish red in color. It poured with a short light tan colored head that died down, leaving a collar around the edge of the glass and traces of lacing on the surface.
S: Light to moderate aromas of dark and chocolate malts are present in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell, and seems to have a little less in the way of flavors of dark and chocolatey malts and notes of spruce tips.
M: It feels just about medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The spruce tips really stand out in this stout and help to liven things up a bit, although I don't get any aromas and flavors of pumpkins.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of founddrama
3.16/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Creamy head, smooth mouthfeel. The spruce notes are *real* subtle on the finish. There is a good sweetness up front. Hardly any of the bitterness I'd expect from 50 IBUs. Also: bottle claims some pumpkin but I'm not tasting it.

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Photo of Hab11
3.73/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Reviewed with Three Lions from a 22oz Bomber.
Look: very dark coffee in color with an Irish Cream head two to three fingers. Settles nicely leaving abundant lacing. Light syrup in consistentcy.
Smell: surprisingly piney, with simple sugar backing maybe light cano syrup? Strong bitter chocolate.
Taste: the pine comes through like I'm eating a pine cone. No real pumpkin for me but I do get the allspice. Almost has a sour cream taste to it.
Feel: carbonation comes through at the front and back of the mouth. More bitter than I was expecting all the way through. Any creaminess is mid tongue. Feel is a conundrum it's what it is! What's that meh! Can take it or leave it. Wouldn't dump it but also wouldn't Rush for more.
Overall: If somebody who wasn't a beer nut handed this to me I would give them kudos for trying to expand their horizons but since I have had world class stouts
this one is average.

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Photo of ThreeLions
3.19/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

22 oz. Bomber split with Hab11.
Hab had never had rock art before so I figured we would start with something that would age well for a few months.

Appearance: pours a thin looking dark color with a magnificent two to three finger head that dissipates to a 3mm that sticks around. Great lacing. Sits nice and dark in the glass.

Smell: rather boring smell. No pumpkin, certainly no spruce and maybe just some dark roasted malts in a faint background. Extremely disappointing nose. Maybe a hint of pumpkin. Really not great at all.

Taste: hooray quite different from the nose there's actually something going on in the taste. Not sure that I care for it but at least there is some flavor. Pine comes through right away but isn't really great. This is followed by some malty goodness and then possibly some sweet pumpkin. Yeah...I don't really care for it.

Mouth: okay. Maybe better than okay. Silky a bit with some decent carbonation but then the bitterness comes through and we'll it's not really for me. It's okay and maybe a bit better than okay but it's just plain. Actually it would be better if it were plain. I don't really want the rest of this. Sort of not really coherent. A bit all.over. just meh.

Overall: i'm.not really sure what they were going for. The spruce didn't come through in a good way, neither did the pumpkin for that matter. The malts were sort of muted. This was not really a great beer. Certainly wasn't terrible.but it was a bit messy at times. Could use a lot more pumpkin and some sort of better balance for the spruce. Or maybe it just needed a stronger base stout to begin with. I will not be buying this one again.

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Photo of BoldRulerVT
3.25/5  rDev -11%

Poured from bomber into a tulip.
Pours very, very dark with half a finger of caramel colored head.
Smells roasty, some spice, touch of hops and spruce.
Tastes muddled. Roastiness, touch of dark coffee, not a lot of pumpkin or spruce.
Overall this beer was ok, but kind of all over the place.

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Photo of Brad007
3.25/5  rDev -11%

Pours with a dark brown hue and a thin head into my glass. I believe it's an updated version of their pumpkin spruce stout.

Roasted coffee with a faint hint of pumpkin and spruce.

The spruce tips and pumpkin form an interesting set of textures that range from sweet, roasted and slick. I believe the pumpkin rounds out the texture.

Bitter, woodsy finish with lingering roasted coffee.

Not for the faint of heart.

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Vermont Spruce Stout from Rock Art Brewery
Beer rating: 3.65 out of 5 with 50 ratings