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Chocolate Sombrero | Clown Shoes

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Chocolate SombreroChocolate Sombrero

Brewed by:
Clown Shoes
Massachusetts, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Roasted dark malts plus extra chocolate malts plus ancho chile plus cinnamon plus organic vanilla extract plus a chocolate eating, beer drinking, Clown Shoes wearing, multi limbed, gorgeous and glorious Mexican wrestler on the label. That’s the recipe for a Chocolate Sombrero!

Added by rab53 on 02-26-2012

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Reviews: 319 | Ratings: 1,757
Photo of thecheapies
3.8/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Brown-black body with a tan head that became a thin disc after not too long. 3.5

Dusty chocolate and roasted pecans in the nose. Very roasty and a little musty/sweet. Some notes of dark fruits and coffee. 3.5

Bittersweet and spicy. Light chocolate, some coffee, cinnamon, and thinly-veiled pepper heat. Earthy and hearty with a very thin and simple vinous note. Not bad, at all. I was expecting more chocolate, but the spice is nice. Not bad. 4.0

A little thin-bodied. Decent carbonation. Highly drinkable. 3.5

I like this beer just fine. A few shortcomings, mostly regarding the qualities comparable to others of the style. 4.0

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Photo of tdm168
4.5/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Hoyt for sharing this bomber

A - pitch black with a big, thick cap of brown, chocolaty head that has great retention

S - cinnamon, chocolate, faint coffee, roasted malts

T - roasted malts, coffee, cinnamon, vanilla, big rich chocolate throughout

M - full bodied, smooth, well carbonated

This is a really smooth stout with tremendous flavor. The spices blend nicely with the rich chocolate base. The coffee and roasted notes play nicely throughout. This was a really enjoyable stout. It's definitely worth trying.

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Photo of mactrail
3.62/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep and dark in the tall Petrus tulip. Decent head with a tan tint. Not the most carbonated beer. Great aroma of spice cake and cocoa with cinnamon.

I think of chocolate gingerbread cake. I can't think of much else to say. Lots of cinnamon mixed with a strong cocoa flavor. Possibly some hops to give it a little edge. The Copper Kettle brewpub in Denver makes a highly-rated Mexican Chocolate Stout which this reminds me of. The Sombrero is a little stronger, and the chocolate and spice seems to work as a RIS. Dark burnt malt but a lot of sugar.

From the 22 oz bottle purchased from Food and Friends in Philadelphia. Thoroughly pleasant, and highly sippable, but hardly worth the freight for my wallet.

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Photo of ThickNStout
4.05/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle from Total Wine (Kennesaw, GA). 7.99. Bottled 05/12. Served in a Terrapin snifter. 

Pours a very dark near-black brown with 1.5 finger deep tan head. Nice little islands of lacing.

Smells of cocoa, roasted malts, peppers and vague vanilla. The nose opens up and gets richer as it warms. 

As advertised, there is a good blend of bitter chocolate up front and mild chili peppers behind. Charred malts, vanilla, slight cinnamon, leather, dark fruits and subtle booze fading in and out. There's alot going on in there and I like the mix. 

Enjoyably smooth creamy medium full feel with fairly mild carbonation. The pepper is most apparent towards the end of the long bittersweet aftertaste. 

Yet another winner from Clown Shoes. They really do stouts well. Chocolate Sombrero is almost a Hunahpu light- not as big, rich or complex but it hits many of the same notes with a much lower price tag. Well worth at least a try for any stout fan. I'm not sure what aging will do to the subtle chili and cinnamon but I'm gonna sock 1 or 2 away to find out.

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Photo of oberon
3.8/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured jet black into my imperial nonic,a thinner deep beige colored head atop.Alot of vanilla and chocolate in the nose,as it sat more the alcohol sweetness along with some dark fruit came into play,not much ancho presence.Flavors of vanilla and bakers chocolate were nice but the ancho chilli flavors were very light wich I was hoping to get more of,nicely roasted in the finish.It's a double stout with rich flavors just lacking the chilli flavors wich was the main reason I bought the beer.

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Photo of dogfishandi
3.78/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle at fridge temp poured into a snifter. bottled 3/2012.

pours out a nice deep opaque black color with a big creamy 2 fingers of tan, light mocha colored head, lots of good retention and some pretty good lacing left on the glass. tight, creamy bubbles in the head.

lots of vanilla extract and cocoa, lots of sweet toasted malt as well, also a bit of roast. as it warms, a touch of alcohol shows up, definatly nothing offensive. im having a real hard time picking out any chilies of cinnamon however.

again, the vanilla, chocolate, and some sweet toasted malt are at the forefront. also some roastiness. as this warms, a bit of welcomed booze comes in, just a touch solvent like and maybe some hints of cinnamon. again, i cant really tell that chilies were used here, but still a tasty beer.

heavier side of medium bodied, just the right creamy carbonation for this beer.

a pretty tasty beer, you really have to let it warm to bring out some of those hidden flavors. i was a little disappointed in that there was really no chilie pepper flavor, as i was looking forward to that the most after i read the label. also after reading the label, i couldnt help but think that maybe they got influenced by hunapus a bit, but this definatly reminded me way more of victory at sea.

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Photo of Immortale25
4.3/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a pint glass. Label says bottled 3/2012.

A- Pours a hauntingly pitch black color with a 1/2 inch dark tan head that retains slightly before retreating to a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a light sheet of surface foam. Full ring of drippy lacing.

S- Immediate dark chocolate and coffee aroma with a high amount of roast. Some caramel sweetness.

T- Dark roasted coffee and dark chocolate dominate the flavor but there's an admitted sweetness and, after multiple sips, a noticeable capsaicin burn from the chilies. Alcohol is certainly present but melds with all the other characteristics well. A tad bit of licorice.

M- Probably the most exciting part. Creamy and slick but with a lingering bite from the chilies. Medium low carbonation and an intensely robust body.

O- Although it's an idea that's been done before, Clown Shoes hit the nail on the head with this one. I'm going to be pretty bold in saying that it ranks up there with the Chocolate Oak Aged Yeti, that's how nice it is.

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Photo of cindyjeffsmith
3.92/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: deep brown. Some cola like highlights. Wisp of a tan head.
Smell: chocolate chocolate chocolate. With hints of the ancho chili and cinnamon. I like it,the spice is understated.
Taste: getting the vanilla extract in the taste. Still heavy chocolate with the ancho and cinnamon understated (a nice thing in my opinion. Achieves balance).
Overall: the multi limbed, beer loving, chocolate loving Mexican wrestler on the label is awesome.

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Photo of cjgator3
4.29/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle

A- Poured into a tulip glass. Pours a dark black color with light tan head.

S- The aroma is dark roasted malts, chocolate, chiles, cinnamon and vanilla. It is rare that I can smell every single ingredient in a beer with so many different things in it, but each individual ingredient really does stand out. That is impressive!

T- The taste is dark roasted malts up front with some chocolate flavors. The cinnamon and ancho chiles leave a faint but lingering spiciness on the tongue. The finish also has some warmth from the alcohol as well.

M- The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation. 

O- Overall, this was an enjoyable brew that gets extra points in my book for being so unique. The flavors of the ingredients come together almost magically at times. Highly recommended!

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Photo of oline73
3.65/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into my Chimay goblet.

Appearance: Pours an almost opaque dark brown color with a nice looking half finger of tan head. The head leaves a ring around the edge of the cup with just a hint of lacing on the glass.

Smell: The smell is full of chocolate and roasted malt. I'm getting some dark fruit and a mild hint of smoked chilis. There is a sweetness from the malt that shows up as well.

Taste: Not nearly as much sweet chocolate as in the smell. The chili peppers are there, but I'm not getting much burn at all. Some mild cinnamon and roast in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with fairly smooth carbonation and a slick finish.

Overall: I would have liked some more heat in this beer. Not a ton, just enough to know that the pepper are there. Not bad, but not mind blowing.

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Photo of Rizalini
3.5/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bomber, bottled 3/2012, into my Stone tulip...

A - Pours almost black, with a minimal 1/2 finger brown head. It really doesn't hang around that long at all.

S - The smell is extremely similar to their Vampire Slayer stout. Rich and creamy milk chocolate aroma. Not really picking up any of the cinnamon or ancho in the aroma.

T/M - The taste isn't as chocolate forward as the smell leads to. But the chocolate malt is definately there in the beginning, giving way to the smokey, earthy ancho chili. I am kinda drawing a blank on the cinnamon, and the heat tho. Medium mouthfeel, slightly undercarbonated.

O - Not my most favorite brew from Clown Shoes, but not their worst either. The flavor profile was just missing a few key elements for me to really love this beer.

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Photo of tobelerone
4.2/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Rich black-bodied beer with a small brown head that settles down slowly. Patchy lacing on the glass. Chocolaty aroma with hints of cinnamon and chilis that are fairly subtle; good roastiness; smells sweet and malty.

A very tasty stout; I am a fan of the chili/chocolate combination and this one does it well. Again there is some mild chili heat and a light burn after the swallow but nothing that goes overboard. In fact, the chili and cinnamon, while certainly present, are pretty subtle overall. Lots of dark and milk chocolate flavor, roasty malt, vanilla, caramel; sugary sweetness but not cloying, very faint hop bitterness just buried beneath the surface. Alcohol is well hidden.

Medium full bodied with moderate carbonation and a creamy, slightly sticky overall mouthfeel. Very smooth and tasty.

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Photo of Bung
4.05/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz. Pretty much black just some brown around the edges. Thin layer of tan.

Aroma, strong cocoa, roast malt. An earthy peat like quality I would chalk up to the pepper. A little cinnamon like spice.

Taste, smooth roast malt, dark chocolate, light vanilla and anise. The earthy quality makes this remind me of a Baltic Porter. Cocoa and creamer finish.

Solid medium body and quite creamy. No alcohol here and no pepper heat really either. Drinks easy even on a warm night.

Feels like the pepper really added subtle effects other than pepper heat. Very well done.

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Photo of TempeBeerMan
4.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a dimpled mug.

A – Pours an inky jet black with a one-finger head of sandy-tan foam. Solid lacing. Both the head and lacing diminish quite a bit over time.

S – A medium strength aroma of both milk and dark chocolate. Hints of sweet malt like the kind added to an ice cream "malt". A faint hint of a medium hot green chili (ancho/pobalno) as well.

T – Chocolate taste more “cocoa” and not as sweet as the nose would indicate, althought still quite sweet overall. Vanilla and cinnamon present in the mid palate. Faint heat from the chilies in the finish which builds slowly as the bottle is drained (more on that below). Slight bittering in the finish but no real hop character detectable and the bittering is more than likely from the roasted grain. Flavors are robust. Not uber-complex, but enough going on to hold some interest. Everything blends well. Tasty.

M – Silky and creamy. Big and full bodied, but no hint of syrupyness. Low to medium carbonaton. Finishes dry which combined with the slight heat from the chilies, makes you want another sip immediately. Absolutely perfect for this style. Bravo.

O – Quite good. Very enjoyable. Not quite as complex as New Belgium’s “Cocoa Mole”, but better and more “southwestern” than Sam Adam’s “The Vixen”. Awesome as a dessert beer (which is how this was sampled). A worthy effort.

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Photo of kawilliams81
4.32/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a Bell's tulip.

A- Pours black with a 1 finger tan head. Small blotches of lacing.

S- chocolate, chile peppers, and roasted malts.

T- sweet chocolate, spices, cinnamon, pepper not as strong as aroma.

M- medium body and carbonation. Slight dryness from the pepper.

O- nice chocolate and pepper combo and drinks well.

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Photo of Chaney
3.85/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled on 3/2012

Man, Clown shoes has the best bottle artwork ever!

Served in a Delirium Tremens snifter/tulip/shaped-glass?

A: Poured pitch black, like any good Imperial Stout, with a webby, frothy, one finger head that settled on top of the brew in mocha clumps.

S: I definitely got a whiff of sassy, spicy chocolate along with a good bit of sugar. As someone who lived in the Southwest for a while, it smelled like Mexican brownies!

T: I know Mexican hot chocolate, and this one was almost there. I got the late chile afterbite which was a nice sensory experience. The chocolate itself was a bit Nestle's Quick-ish though.

M: Thick and texturally right one for a brew of this octane, and the lacing was web-like. I REALLY dug the spice and tempered sweetness.

O: Clown Shoes continues to impress me, especially with their recent stout entries. they are quickly becoming my new "Southern Tier."

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Photo of ChugginOil
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours very dark, almost black. There is a small ring of light tan head. Spotty lace.

The nose has sweet milk chocolate, roasted malts, candied sugar and chilies.

The taste is loaded with cocoa, light chilies, toasted malts, light vanilla, bitter chocolate. Well hidden ABV.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a light level of carbonation. Sticky and sweet but balanced with the roasted malts.

Overall, decent stout for the price and I will gladly re-visit it.

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Photo of gkatsoris
4.5/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pitch black. Full, whispy, tan head. Deep.

S: Chocolatly for sure. No presence of the chili's.

T: Man this is tastey. Chocolate and coffee up front. And then a slight ting of heat at the very end. Cocoa. Delicious!

M: Thick and chewy, def not foamy. A real nice coat left on the tonge. And there is a slight tingle from the heat of the chili's.

O: A grand brew. Sure wish it wasn't 12 plus dollars a bottle tho.

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Photo of Casey10
4.35/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a great little beer here and not to be missed. Cool artwork and and a great stout at a decent price as well !!

The appearance is really nice dark and wispy head.

The Smell is spot on with chocolate notes comming through.

The Taste is right on with a super chocolate and spice notes throughout.

The Mouthfeel stays with you it has a bit of a bite but a good one with the chile really standing out.

overall this is a great representation of a chilie beer. I would have it again and recomend it as well.

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Photo of billab914
3.58/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle poured into my Three Floyd's glass. It poured black in color with a frothy, tan colored head filling the top inch of the glass. Nice lacing and head retention as I drank it.

The aroma shows the ancho chile and cinnamon to it, but it's thankfully not overwhelming. I get some bitter, roasted malts along with some notes of coffee and chocolate as well. The vanilla seems to smooth it out and bring it together. It actually comes together pretty well considering everything that went into it.

The ancho pepper and cinnamon are also pretty noticeable in the taste, but again aren't overwhelming. The roasted and chocolate malts give it a nice strong base to handle the potent spices. The vanilla again seems to smooth it out. Lots of flavors going on in it, but it comes together relatively well.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied for the style with carbonation being moderate. Overall, it was an interesting beer with a lot of bold flavors to it. It came together pretty well, but the flavors just didn't really stand out to me. Decent and interesting beer overall and I give them credit for getting all of the flavors to work pretty well together though.

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Photo of TATURBO
3.83/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Dark, Nearly Opaque. Bubbly Head.

S: Chili's, Chocolate, Cinnamon.

T: Peppery with lots of Chocolate. Not much other complexity of flavors. I did pick up a bit of Vanilla on the aftertaste.

M: "Tingley" with some Kick (Heat)

O: Disclaimer: I really like Peppers, spicy, hot flavored stuff.
This is one of the better Pepper beers I've had, the kick isn't muted too bad. Would drink again and definitely enjoy.

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Photo of bbeane
4.12/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Poured into a DFH oversized snifter... starts with a small brownish head that disappears quickly leaving little lacing. Beer is black in color with no light shining through when held up to the ceiling

S- Alot going on... I get notes of chocolate and vanilla, malts, and a hint of the chilies

T- Very nice... it starts out with a roasted chocolate malt flavor that seems to become more prominent mid swig. Cinnamon and chilies come through in the finish

M- A little thin with light medium carbonation

O- I enjoyed this one. Has a great melody of flavors going on between the chocolate, spices, and chilies


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Photo of EricCioe
2.46/5  rDev -36.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Had at a chili beer tasting including Mexican Cake, Hunahpu's, Theobroma, Cocoa Mole, and Ghost Face Killah.

This pours deep brown with a little head. On the nose there is a foul mixture of hot chilis and roasted malt and chocolate. The best way I can think to describe it is as chili powder and chocolate powder. It just feels false. In the mouth the initial hit is very hot from the chili, with some chocolate and roast coming out after the attack, before settling into a long, hot and not altogether unpleasant finish. The body is medium.

Overall, I didn't care for this beer, and moreover, I found the quality to be lacking. I wasn't a fan of either of the three chili stouts at the tasting, but with the other two at least it seemed like the flavors just didn't sit well for me, whereas I can't picture people actually liking this one.

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Photo of silentjay
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours dark brown to black with a decent mocha head that quickly recedes yet laces well.

ancho chiles definitely come out in the aroma as well as some cracked pepper with burnt malts and bitter chocolate.

very balanced between some burnt malts, dark chocolate, roasted peppers, spices, a drying char on the finish.

almost full bodied with subtle carbonation and a nice drying, peppery finish.

not bad. not crazy, not wonderful, but drinks very well. good novelty beer.

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Photo of angusblackheart
4.63/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I am trying to catch up with the new Clown Shoes beers, as they keep releasing new ones so fast, I have missed a few.

This was bottled 2/2012

Big black beer with brown highlights and a nice tan head that fell slowly as I sipped. The smell was of mostly chocolate, but also some ancho spice. Did not get vanilla or cinnamon on the nose, but got all of the flavors in a surprisngly well balanced beer.


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Chocolate Sombrero from Clown Shoes
3.9 out of 5 based on 1,757 ratings.
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