La Muerta (pre-2015)
Freetail Brewing Company

La Muerta (pre-2015)La Muerta (pre-2015)
Rate It
Beer Geek Stats | Print Shelf Talker
Stout - American Imperial
4.05 | pDev: 11.6%
Freetail Brewing Company
Texas, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
La Muerta (pre-2015)La Muerta (pre-2015)
Notes: La Muerta is brewed each year for Día de los Muertos in honor of our departed friends and family. A big, lush Imperial Stout, La Muerta is full of roast, smoke and chocolate flavors from an array of specialty malts that go into this garnet-black beer.
Reviews: 91 | Ratings: 320 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by mhksuccess:
Photo of mhksuccess
mhksuccess from California

4/5  rDev -1.2%

Feb 24, 2014
More User Reviews:
Photo of jamescain
jamescain from Texas

4.37/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Vierte en un sniffer en Freetail

Appearance: Black with a white head that quickly fades into a ring around the glass. The beer was served way too cold so I had to let it warm up in my hands for a while before drinking it.

Aroma: Very smoky, I was not expecting that, roasted malt, chocolate, coffee, all the good things you would expect from an imperial stout.

Taste: Still pretty smoky, but enjoyable, chocolate, coffee and roasted malts round out the rest of the flavors. The taste is nice, not amazing but very good.

Mouthfeel: Thick and chewy like an imperial stout should be. There is no noticeable alcohol sensation, which is impressive from a 10%ABV beer.

Overall: Very good and I would recommend it if you can get your hands on one. This is the reason I’m glad I live in San Antonio, without Freetail I don’t know what I would do here.

May 17, 2011
Photo of AgentZero
AgentZero from Illinois

3.49/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to brew3crew for sharing this one.

A - Black beer with a fairly minimal head that left pretty much nothing on the sides of the glass.

S - It's got a lot of smoke in there, some earth notes, little bit of grease, caramel, and some chocolate. I actually kind of dig the smoke.

T - Taste just didn't really do it for me. It's kind of a chocolately, bacony, smokey brew, all things I like, but this combination wasn't quite right on. It wasn't bad by any means, but just not great.

M - Smooth, lower carbonation, fairly full bodied.

O - Wouldn't mind trying the barrel-aged version of this, as bourbon on the bacony smoke could be interesting. A little different, but this one wasn't quite my thing.

Aug 21, 2011
Photo of FreshmanPour77
FreshmanPour77 from Minnesota

4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Aug 23, 2012
Photo of richardflyr
richardflyr from Connecticut

4/5  rDev -1.2%

Jun 26, 2012
Photo of brystmar
brystmar from Texas

3.9/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On draft at the brewpub. First time drinking Freetail!

Not too much head (probably due to the glass size), ok retention, decent lace. Nose isn't very strong but holds roasted malts, booze, and dark fruits.

Bitter dark chocolate dominates the taste. Roasty malts join the fray. Big, creamy body serves as the perfect medium for these flavors. Boozy warmth compliments a surprising hop backbone as it descends. Finishes dry and mildly bitter.

I grew up in San Antonio and am proud a brew this solid calls my birthplace home.

Dec 21, 2011
Photo of SanDiegoBeerLove
SanDiegoBeerLove from California

4/5  rDev -1.2%

Dec 17, 2011
Photo of petermethot
petermethot from New Jersey

4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Jun 08, 2014
Photo of nathanmiller
nathanmiller from New York

4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Oct 28, 2014
Photo of elNopalero
elNopalero from California

4.83/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Updated notes:

2011 vintage, with two years on it. Tasted on La Muerta Day, 2013.

As dark as ever with this amazing cocoa-tan colored foam. The beer smells of dark cherries and dark chocolate, with the faintest whisper of smoke and vanilla.

The flavor runs on for days, with more dark cherries, dark chocolate, worn leather and vanilla-spiked sugar. There’s a long lingering mouthfeel. Two years makes this beer mellow and subtle and oh so divine. Seek it out.

2011 vintage.

Split this bad boy the first week of June after cellaring it since November. Time has definitely taken what was already an excellent imperial stout and made it … transcendent. Just incredible all around.

This poured an inky black with thick, creamy cocoa-colored foam. It has that wonderfully glorious roasty aroma with cocoa nibs and dark coffee, and just a wisp of smoke. No noticeable booze.

The flavor is incredible, with dark chocolate and a roasty smoothness to it. There’s a hint of smoked malts on the finish, and a wonderful body that holds up as it warms and opens further, revealing layers of dark, worn leather and dried tobacco.

Smooth and slick, like Barry White’s voice, with a lingering finish like a sustained note held through the finish. Or something like that.

An all around exceptional brew. Bring it back, I want another glass for an encore.

Nov 07, 2013
Photo of Doodler
Doodler from Colorado

5/5  rDev +23.5%

Nov 29, 2011
Photo of Rollzroyce21
Rollzroyce21 from California

4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Mar 17, 2013
Photo of Schrobblehead
Schrobblehead from Texas

5/5  rDev +23.5%

Nov 15, 2011
Photo of AlexFields
AlexFields from Tennessee

3.5/5  rDev -13.6%

Mar 02, 2013
Photo of mtbdonn
mtbdonn from Colorado

4/5  rDev -1.2%

Apr 02, 2014
Photo of Knapp85
Knapp85 from Pennsylvania

3.74/5  rDev -7.7%

Sep 28, 2014
Photo of Auror
Auror from Massachusetts

4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Jan 11, 2013
Photo of jegross2
jegross2 from Illinois

4.18/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Reviewing the La Muerta from Freetail Brewing Company out of San Antonio, Texas.

Score: 91

2011 vintage served in a mini-chalice glass and enjoyed on 06/12/13.

Appearance: Pours an inky black color that is not totally opaque at the outer edges. Pours a layer of dark khaki head that settles to a ring around the glass. Average lacing, but really good retention. 4.25/5

Smell: Smoke, chocolate and roast. Residual coffee and a touch of hops. Pretty one dimensional (almost entirely roast/smoke and chocolate), but I really like that dimension. 4.25/5

Taste: Tastes just like it smells. Lots of roast, smoke and milk chocolate. Hint of coffee too. The smokiness lingers and layers. 4.25/5

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, low carbonation. Smoke prickles the palate and absolutely coats the tongue. This one is kind of a palate killer, so drink it last. Delicious nonetheless. 3.5/5

Overall: Not complex, but this is a great example of doing a simple flavor profile very well. Haters of smoke beware, lovers of smoke rejoice. I have heard reports that the 2012 vintage is allegedly infected, but the 2011 is still holding up well.

Cost: $10 for an 11.2 oz (330 ml) stubby bottle.

Jul 14, 2012
Photo of joshuacavett
joshuacavett from Texas

4.88/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had a 2010 & 2011 side by side in November of 2011. Major difference between the 2010 & 2011.

2011: thicker, coffee, toffee & bourbon notes. Mouthfeel was much better on this one & color was slightly darker. More viscous & in my opinion more delicious.

2010: age did not do this beer well in my opinion. Although I still enjoyed, it was almost a cascading dark tast & sight to me rather than a American Double/ RIS.

Great great offering by Freetail!

Nov 18, 2011
Photo of crewfan16
crewfan16 from Minnesota

4.19/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

poured from a 22 oz bomber into a central waters snifter. thanks again to Channels321 for the beer via trade. 2012 vintage

a- fairly aggressive pour gave me about 2 fingers of thick chocolate milk colored head which took a minute or two to mellow out. beer is black with nice tan lacing on the edges of the glass.

s- smells rich. chocolate, some smoke, roasted malt

t- follows the nose. bittersweet chocolate, just a tad of smokiness, but a tiny bit of hop bite toward the finish. maybe just a tad of dark cherry. chocolate lingers more in the finish. a tad on the sweet side, not terribly complex but a very robust stout

m- really enjoy the feel of this beer. solid carbonation but the richness of it provides some thick chunky quality that i love in my imperial stouts. even though the abv is 10.2%, it is not noticeable. a very nice lingering finish hangs out in my mouth for what seems like forever. might be my favorite part of this beer.

overall, i really enjoyed this beer. a bit on the sweet side, but with just enough smokey quality to balance it out. not as complex as some other imperial stouts, but has a nice thick mouthfeel and long finish that I cant get enough of. Plus, it paired great with some roasted venison steaks that I made for dinner. happy I got the opportunity to try it, sad I dont have the opportunity to have it more often.

Apr 15, 2013
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79 from New York

3.8/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 06/09/12 notes. Big thanks to Huhzubendah for trading a bottle of this to me. Shared with friends side by side with the BA version. 2011 vintage.

a - Pours a dark brown, almost black color, with one inch of dark tan head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of smoke, peat, roasted malts, chocolate, vanilla, light dark fruits. Pretty nice; the smoke is there but not overbearing.

t - Tastes of smoke, vanilla, roasted malts, peat, dark fruits, toasted malts, chocolate. Much more smoke and vanilla than the nose, but too much smoke for me.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Smooth body but a sipper for sure.

o - Overall a pretty good smoked stout. I liked the nose, though thought the smoke dominated the taste a bit. If you like smoked beers worth checking out, though I preferred the BA version a bit.

Jun 27, 2012
Photo of Phoenix2443
Phoenix2443 from Texas

5/5  rDev +23.5%

Apr 30, 2012
Photo of aasher
aasher from Indiana

4.12/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got this bottle about a month ago in a great box from BrewerB. Thanks for hitting this Want Brian!

It pours a full bodied, dark, dark brown in color that turns to black as it collects in the glass. It has a nice and creamy dark khaki head that dissipates to a soft lacing. The aromas consist of smooth chocolates, low bitterness, dark roasted malts, and light coffee. On the backend I even pick up some light bacon. All are well integrated and make for a really nice nose. The flavors are of cooking chocolate, light coffee, smoke, and bacon. I really like it. It drinks in between medium and full in body and the aftertaste leaves just the right amount of smoke. It drinks really nicely and for the abv. I am a fan of this one. It is a really nice beer. I'm glad I could finally try it.

Jan 05, 2012
Photo of jefferz5000
jefferz5000 from Texas

4.5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Finally, I decide it's time to crack into a prized La Muerta. I don't want to, it's red wax is so beautiful, but I must.

Poured into my Portsmouth snifter (thanks STEG) I think to myself, mmmm motor oily goodness. A deep tan head forms without much effort and hangs out for a while. I have a good feeling about this.

Smells generously of smoke and dark chocolatey tobacco. Yeah. I like where this is going.

As I take my first sip, I can't help but let it sit in my mouth for a few extra seconds. This beer has big flavor with big smoothness. I was actually quite surprised at how smooth this bad boy really is. Alcohol is impressively hidden. I don't even know how beneficial age would really be. The flavors are meshing really well. Taste follows the nose accurately. Very rich. The aftertaste is very much chocolate. Semisweet chocolate. Lingers very nicely.

Thicky thick. Carbonation is just right. Not too much, but well done.

Drinkability is actually pretty good considering the abv. Warmth in the chest is the main evidence that this thing is serious. Very robust, best shared with a friend or two, however I'll be taking down this one alone. But, my folks enjoyed the few sips they took!

Nov 20, 2010
Photo of duceswild
duceswild from Heard & McDonald Islands

4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Jul 31, 2012
La Muerta (pre-2015) from Freetail Brewing Company
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 320 ratings