Chocolate River
Trinity Brewing Company

Chocolate RiverChocolate River
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Stout - American Imperial
Ranked #1,440
Ranked #6,284
4.1 | pDev: 9.27%
Trinity Brewing Company
Colorado, United States
Chocolate RiverChocolate River
Notes: Heavy in roast, chocolate, and Special B malts this beer comes off with a unique and unexpectedly dry profile. Combining two Brettas, lends a milder barnyard, but heavily funky character accented by an apparent 'natural cork' flavor. Aging the beer on French oak barrels and allowing it to properly develop, attenuation is high revealing a light body and notes of astringency. Balance is created by the addition of three special golden ingredients: honey, golden raisins, and mustard seed.
Reviews: 17 | Ratings: 73 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by russpowell:
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russpowell from Arkansas

4.02/5  rDev -2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly carbonated ebony with a sliver of mocha head. Average head retention & lacing

S: Chocolate, dark fruit, woodiness, vanilla once warm

T: Follows the nose, nice dark chocolate notes, raisins, faint coffee notes up front. Dryness, a little boozeyness, a some red pepper, plus vanilla as this warms, some mocha notes too. Finishes with vanilla, dark chocolate, some faint smokeyness & coffee, plus dryness & faint red pepper notes

MF: Slick, fairly firm carbonation, medium body

Drinks great , seems likes a straight up IMP Stout, for some reason I thought this had brett (although not mentioned on the label). Well worth a go, but not one I could afford to make a habit of, even if possible

Jul 27, 2015
More User Reviews:
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jzeilinger from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pitch black pour and thin toffee colored lacing ring.

S - Chocolate and cream.

T - Chocolate cream, smoke, light char, bitter chocolate finish.

M - Medium body, silky, and a dry finish.

O - A nice beer.

Dec 15, 2016
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StonedTrippin from Colorado

4.17/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

pretty neat beer, with all the chocolate and oak on it, very different from others, has a trinity feel to it, even though its not a wild or funked out beer by any stretch, it definitely shows the competence and versatility of these guys. dark dark brown, not quite as sludgy viscous as anticipated, but definitely rich and thick, with a robust frothing tan head, looks nice in the glass. the nose and taste are pretty much the same, booze is way back, surprised how well hidden behind the cocoa it is. a certain bitter aroma arises, but the beer tastes so smooth, with only a balancing sweetness and a woody appeal thats really on point. i have not known trinity to be much of a brewer of beers like this, so this is a leap it seems, and definitely a success. its dangerously easy to drink, and only chocolaty enough to be enhancing, not overbearing, making a really nuanced and refined brew on the whole, but definitely with some fudge character to it. not sure i would want more than a glass, but what a treat indeed a glass is! not to be missed while its on tap at the brewhouse.

edit: in the bottle, the chocolate, and especially the vanilla, are much more potent. not over flavored, its still woody and balanced and bitter, but i got a lot more of both than i remember on tap. really nice beer this is, a standout in their lineup!

Feb 05, 2015
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Curt3 from New Jersey

4.15/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Sep 22, 2019
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HoppingMadMonk from New Jersey

4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Has an aroma of milk chocolate, alcohol, coffee,chocolate liqueur
Taste is similar, milk chocolate is very noticeable. Almost reminds me of yoo-hoo and the thin feel adds to that .

Aug 25, 2019
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Derek from Canada

3.84/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Damn that was pricie for an old beer.

Sep 17, 2016
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rab53 from Washington

3.76/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Feb 14, 2015
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JMBSH from Colorado

3.6/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Mar 03, 2015
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LXIXME from New Mexico

4.28/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Aug 27, 2017
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PhineasMcClintock from Massachusetts

4.24/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Jun 11, 2016
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CHickman from New York

4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Cut the red wax off this bottle and it pours pitch black but with visible bubbles that race up to a 1-2 finger creamy tan head that is full of popping bubbles which dissipates pretty slowly, leaving good lacing that slides down and leaves rings as it goes down. A creamy layer remains and lingers on top.

Smells of cocoa powder, chocolate, hot peppers like a habanero, burnt coffee grinds, roasted malt, charred wood like it was burning in a campfire all night, light piney hops, espresso, dark fruit and bakers chocolate. There is a hint of booze which resembles bourbon or dark rum, but it blends in really well with all the chocolate and malts in the brew's nose.

Tastes of cocoa powder, yeast with metallic/penny flavors, chocolate, smokes grains, hot peppers, bakers chocolate, molasses, chocolate syrup, earthy notes like dry grass, peat moss and sticks, and then of course the milk chocolate, cocoa nibs and vanilla beans show up to complete the complexities and add more flavors. Almost seems oaky and fruit with red wine accents or dark fruit like raisin or date coming out after the malts and char fade. The 11% ABV is pretty well hidden, but the booze does come through in the flavor and as it warms your belly. The alcohol also issued a slight buzz, which was nice.

Mouthfeel is very creamy and smooth with a thick chewy body that's leaning towards pea soup-like; the carbonation is very mellow and almost non-existent, but the mild hot pepper spice heat and boozy notes make each sip interesting before the slightly bitter finish that's go nice coffee, char, malty and chocolate sweetness. It fades dry but leave a very nice chocolate aftertaste.

Overall I wasn't sure if I should drink it fresh or age it, so I rolled the dice and cracked it open since I wanted to see how the milk chocolate, cocoa nibs and vanilla beans would interact. Not sure what the aging vessel was, but it gave off wonderful smoky and bourbon like tones as the milk chocolate, cocoa nibs and vanilla beans blended quite well with all the roasted malts. Quite tasty, smooth and very enjoyable, I would definitely have this again.

NOTE: The beer description on the bottle reads nothing like the BA description with Honey, Golden Raisins, and Mustard Seed. My bottle states "Imperial Stout brewed with Milk Chocolate then aged with Dagoba Cocoa nibs and whole Madagascar vanilla beans."

Dec 21, 2015
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GRG1313 from California

3.75/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Mar 02, 2015
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LiquidAmber from Washington

4.23/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours a very dark mahogany brown, appearing opaque black in the glass with a fine, one finger brown head with great retention and lots of lacing. Aroma dominated by milk chocolate with supporting lightly toasted malt, hints of wood and coffee. Flavor is toasted malt with light char, light and dark chocolate, hints of dried and fresh dark fruit, vanilla, light lactose and a hint of hops in the finish. Medium bodied with good mouth feel. Lots of chocolate, vanilla and dark malt flavors here enhanced by light fruit, some char; all really nicely integrated and balanced. Just sweet enough to make the chocolate shine. The high ABV is invisible, this is as easy to drink as a chocolate milk. Very well done, smooth and flavorful. Trinity just came into our area and almost everything was sours or wild, not styles I enjoy. Really glad to run across this and to have such a great experience. I'll be looking for more stouts and styles I like from these guys, they know what they are doing.

Feb 18, 2015
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djrn2 from New Jersey

4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Apr 25, 2017
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Knapp85 from Pennsylvania

4.13/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Jun 11, 2016
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whatname from Pennsylvania

4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dec 09, 2016
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trxxpaxxs from New York

4.16/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mar 26, 2016
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Gobzilla from California

4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Mar 09, 2015
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eawolff99 from Minnesota

4.13/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Apr 26, 2015
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kscaldef from Oregon

3/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

At Festival of Dark Arts. Pretty average in comparison to most offerings at the fest.

Mar 01, 2015
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Greywulfken from New York

4.5/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Chocolate, chocolate, chocolate. You can smell, it, taste it, and feel it. smooth and rich, sweet with dark bittersweet and creamy milk chocolate elements. indulgent and enjoyable.

Feb 07, 2016
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acurtis from New Jersey

3.75/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Jan 01, 2016
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beergoot from Colorado

3.98/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Black body; thin, light tan head; sheets of foam down the glass. Roasted grain and baker's chocolate aroma. The taste leads along the lines of the smell; cocoa; some dark grain char; sweet overall but with a nice counterbalance of bitterness. Heavy body; chewy and velvety; mild grain husk astringency.

A delightful, flavorful and full-bodied imperial stout. It highlights the soft sweetness of the grains and has no perceptible alcohol heat or taste. Nicely done...

May 23, 2018
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rkarimi from Colorado

4.03/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4


Feb 25, 2015
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johnnyboy76 from Oregon

3.78/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Feb 22, 2015
Chocolate River from Trinity Brewing Company
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 73 ratings