Very Angry Beast
Clown Shoes

Very Angry BeastVery Angry Beast
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Stout - American Imperial
Ranked #285
Ranked #1,140
4.28 | pDev: 8.41%
Clown Shoes
Massachusetts, United States
Very Angry BeastVery Angry Beast
Notes: We decided to bring back Very Angry Beast, a classic from the Irate Beast series. The creature became so agitated, however, he busted out from the old label right into the parking lot of our brewery. Man, we'd better corral this bad boy, or the damages are gonna be tough for the insurance company to cover! The beer? It's a blend of Undead Party Crasher and Blaecorn Unidragon, 100% Bourbon Barrel aged and also, 100% Angry!
Reviews: 67 | Ratings: 441 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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q33jeff from New Jersey

4.02/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


LOOK: Dark black color, big frothy off white head. good retention.
AROMA: roasted barley, hint of smoke/wood,
TASTE: Chocolate/fudge up front, wood and coffee follow up; light hint of alcohol burn late, but not really discernible as bourbon without reading the label.
FEEL: Pretty smooth, with just a touch of astringency in finish.

Another good "beast" beer from Clown Shoes. "Flight" is still my favorite.


Apr 03, 2020
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BlurryVisi0n from New York

4.09/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served in a snifter glass from the bottle.

Appearance: Semi thick black body with medium bubbles creating a tan head rising roughly half a finger's length off the body. Settles quickly after one sip but nice definition to the body.

Smell: Whiskey aroma which is more potent than your usual barrel stuff roaming around the country, strong but dissipating very quickly.

Taste: Sweet coffee with a shot of bourbon and brown sugar. Strong alcohol flavor with a butterscotch sweetness.

Mouth: Medium carbonation with a sticky body, full and generously sweet.

Overall: It is definitely nothing new, but definitely good beer. No real need for improvement, throw it in the middle of your beer tasting; the warm up to your next beer. Salud!

Sep 26, 2019
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Tony210 from New Jersey

4.31/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours pitch black with ample mocha head (tastes like choc milk). Massive bourbon and chocolate aroma. Flavor is chocolate, bourbon barrrl, some sweet vanilla, light coffee finish. Slightly tangy. Carbonation lends to a creamy mouthfeel. Overall a great BBA Imperial Stout, if u see it on the shelf buy it!

4.25 rating

Aug 17, 2019
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gueuzeonhigh from Maine

4.27/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I haven't tanked a Clown Shoes Beer that I regretted.
Every one of 'em is a wonderful beer experience.
So far every one I've guzzled has been high alcohol content but wears that percentage with grace amd charm.
Very Angry Beast-- My reference standard is the Blaecorn Unidragon. This example is a wonderful flavor and stance on the palate --- a beer to be savored rather than guzzled. My detraction is purely that the head was short lived-- could be my glass. I'm getting to be an old fart and my taster isn't what it used to be-- I can't detect the bourbon barrel aging and somehow I think the Blaecorn has a more established flavor and profile-- but I cant put away two bombers in one sitting without deleterious effects so memory serves.
Whatever-- it's a wonderful beer if you like powerful , up-front and center stage behind the mic beers. If it was two percent ABV I could put away a quarter keg in a sitting...

Apr 25, 2019
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metter98 from New York

4.15/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a quarter finger high off white head.
S: Light to moderate aromas of dark, roasted malts are present in the nose along with hints of bourbon.
T: The taste follows the smell and has flavors of dark malts along with notes of bourbon from the barrel aging.
M: It feels full-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer has pleasant notes of bourbon and is quite drinkable considering its strength because it hides the alcohol from the taste.

Serving type: bottle

Feb 04, 2019
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The_Mancannon_of_Slothrop from Wyoming

3.62/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pretty run-of-the-mill bourbon stout. Looks beautiful. Nearly black brown with a good thick creamy tan head with nice retention. The smell is almost reminiscent of a sweet stout with maybe a hint of bourbon, and you really have to huff to get everything on the nose. Doesn't exactly come out to greet you. Taste is also a bit muted--more bourbon than anything but even that isn't all that pronounced. Hints of dark chocolate and burnt malt, with a little bit of creamy sweetness rounding it out. Not bad but not great either. Full-bodied, smooth, nice creamy mouthfeel.

In the same way that I prefer CBS to KBS, I feel like Snow on the Maple Tree is better.

Jan 26, 2019
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HoppingMadMonk from New Jersey

4.34/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Solid black color. Just a ive average body, slight creamy oily feel. Medium light carbonation, overall a very nice body
Aroma is a mix of bourbon and black dark coffee, some chocolate and roasted malts follow.
Taste mildly sweet bourbon but very far from sugary. There's a roasted coffee/espresso bitterness that really compliments this well. Some alcohol burn but it seems appropriate and feels pleasant.
Overall this was excellent and I would definitely get this again. All the elements of world class without over doing it

Jan 08, 2019
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jlindros from Massachusetts

4.13/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled 7/06/18
Pours a decent foamy creamy but smaller darker head that fades at a quicker pace, swirling brings it back with decent but lighter retention, a bit of lacing, pitch black beer and thick syrupy legs

Nose starts a bit cold and muted but brings cookie dough, wafer, nougat, a bit of dark chocolate and fudge, mild caramel, then wave of vanilla and some barrel as it starts to warm, as well as some licorice, mild roasty coffee and slight acrid char, a touch of bourbon, some spicy hops, and a bit more fudge and coffee

Taste starts really fluffy nougaty marshmallow, with chocolate ganache, a mild roasted coffee, then dark chocolate and a little fudge, but plenty of candy bar and fair sweetness, a touch of alcohol warmth in the middle, silky smooth rich creamy oatmeal stout like center, some nice vanilla and touch of barrel, a little bourbon but not much, as well as mild baking spices and very faint licorice, and also a slight acrid burnt roast, as well as spicy bitter hops on the back end, and very dark chocolate cocoa, a drier finish with a bit of perfumey alcohol, very bitter part from the acrid charred malts and spicy hops

Mouth is fuller bod, silky lush creamy, nice carb, and a flash of alcohol

Overall mixed on this one, it's a nice blended stout, very nice base beer but the bitter acrid char gets a little distracting especially when it blends with the spicy hops, alcohol is hidden fairly well, my real disappointment is the lack of barrel, there is barely any in this. So aging will soften the bitter tannins and char, but the tiny bit of barrel will be practically non-existent by then.

Dec 14, 2018
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Greywulfken from New York

4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2018 vintage bottled 7/6/18 with an 11% abv... Solid entry in the bourbon barrel aged imperial stout field, with a black pour and thin, fleeting head of dark tan foam; shows a little obsidian brown translucence around the edges... Aromas and flavors pair nicely, with chocolate, vanilla, and molasses at the fore, backdrop notes of espresso and bourbon, and a slight woody char on the finish... Body is smooth and soft, medium-full-bodied and bittersweet - with more sweet up front, bitter on the mid-palate, and a little dryness on the finish... The more I sip it, the more I like it... Yesterday I had their Breakfast Beast - which is (presumably) this, but with actual coffee used in the brewing, and aged a solid 12 months whereas this is aged just a few - and to my tastes, this is the superior drink...

Nov 14, 2018
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sethmeister from New Hampshire

4.4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours black and oily with a creamy bubbly taupe head.

The nose is immediately chocolate cherries. Vanilla. Bourbon.

Taste is coconut, caramel, milk chocolate. Bourbon. Dark chocolate, coffee and molasses. Roasted notes and a hint of char. It's quite remarkable how many delicious flavor notes can be found here.

Mouth feel is soft and weighty with some viscosity.

Drinkability is quite good. There is a touch of alcohol warming in the throat but otherwise the relatively high ABV is borne stealthily.

I've now bought this 3 seperate times and each time it just gets better. What a magnificent stout.

Sep 05, 2018
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darktronica from Indiana

4.4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Along with Vampire Slayer, the original Angry Beast was one of the beers that first turned me on to Clown Shoes. I still have a bottle of the first Very Angry Beast release that I look forward to trying soon side-by-side with the 2018 batch, but for now, this rating is for the 2018 revival.

Aug 29, 2018
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pat61 from Minnesota

4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is big and deep dark brown with a moderate dark tan head with good retention. Malt and alcohol lead the aromas and flavors supported by bourbon, chocolate and a hint of coffee. A delicious delight to drink.

Aug 26, 2018
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Brutaltruth from Ohio

4.28/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From the 22 oz bottle in a snifter via Growler Stop in a snifter. This
very nice imperial pours a rugged blackish brown with a nice head of
light tan foam that subsides to a thick ring, this light wispy pool, and
showcases some light sudsy lacing. Nose of bourbon, dark chocolate
fudge, subtle vanilla, and hints of oak and char....very muted for the
Clown folk. Flavors hit the mark for the wearers of the big funny
shoes. Dark fudge and touches of dark coffee mix and dance about a
boozy bourbon barrel with moderate amounts of vanilla and light char
notes showing flavors of cherry and peppery alcohol with touches of
anise that is mulled in black strap molasses. Nice mouth feel; medium
full body which drinks light for a stout of such heft, moderately coating,
warming, smooth, and with low carbonation that finishes hot and lightly
dry with a sweet char laden edge.

Overall, a SOLID brew worthy of the Clown folks.

Improves with warmth as does the nose. Solid!


Aug 25, 2018
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hoptheology from South Dakota

2.52/5  rDev -41.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

I wanted to like this beer, I really did.

Dark brown/black color with a beige-brown head of 1/2 finger.

Nose : The first note I get hit with is this extremely tannic, sickly, sweet, mushy bourbon aroma. It sets off all the wrong bells in my brain and I want to push it away immediately. Fake cherry tootsie-pop; acrid, burnt barrel; burnt sugar; char, and old plum. If this were a scotch ale I'd probably be more forgiving. It just smells like old beer sitting in a bucket. It's very off-putting and nauseating.

Flavor is much like the nose but hotter and more intense. It brings the addition of tobacco and whiskey to the table, like a back room saloon poker game. Acidic and perhaps infected barrel, vanilla-roma air fresheners, and dirt. Again, old beer in a bucket, but with heat and a cardboard vanilla tree.

Feel is hot and sticky, burning, dry. Sorta thin.

Overall, I'm not sure if age killed this one but I'm not terribly impressed. I discovered this in my cellar just chilling there. It was stored well, but I have no idea for how long. Possibly a couple of years. I mean, cardboard...cherries, that could be infection, but it just seems like this beer isn't suffering from that - it's suffering from a terrible beer to begin with. I've had 4 ounces and I'm completely done. There's leagues of bourbon stouts out there that are much much better.

Sep 30, 2017
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PerfecTool from Georgia

4.44/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This was an outstanding beer! Bought in a bottle shop not expecting a whole lot. About three years old. Nose was very boozy but well hidden in the taste. Taste dark choclate, vanilla and nutmeg. Definitely pick this one up if you come across it.

Jul 08, 2016
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angelmonster from Colorado

4.03/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Review is of an almost three year old botte. Date of bottling was 7/18/13

Pours a pitch black body, head is 1/5th of an inch and sand colored. Head retention was decent and lacing was above average.

Aromas are of spicy rye, molasses, light anise, fudge, and alcohol. Barley and a chocolate syrup sweetness comes through as beer warms. Hops arent present, alcohol is definitely there but wouldnt say that its bourbon driven.

First taste is mix of peppery alcohol and spices: allspice, anise, even a little cinnamon. Dont know where that is coming from, maybe vampire slayer or the barrel aging. Hints of chocolate appear as beer warms, it tames the 11.5% abv. That being said, whisky is still very apparent after 3 years of aging.

Mouthfeel was lush, carbonation levels are good. Head didnt create the ideal mouthfeel but I got some froth out of it. Alcohol stung the palate slightly and warmed the throat.

Overall this beer was good but I think my expectations were too high. Blaecorn unidragon is one of my favorite stouts and I was hoping this would be a barrel aged version of that but blending it with another beer and throwing it into a barrel morphed it into something completely unto itself.

Apr 28, 2016
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Tele from California

4.33/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Serving Type: Bottle (7.8.13)
Consumed: 11.20.15

A: 4.5 Pours pitch black with a small tan head.

S: 4.5 Roasted malt, maple syrup, and molasses come through most with moderate bourbon and vanilla coming behind. Some chocolate, coffee, and charred oak show up as the beer warms.

T: 4.25 Starts off with a bit of sweetness moving quickly into roasty, darker flavors. There’s molasses, licorice, coffee, and dark chocolate. Like the nose, bourbon and vanilla are present, but a bit mild compared to the other flavors. Finish is smooth and a little boozy in a nice way.

M: 4.25 Body is a little thin for the style. Carbaonation, on the other hand, is on point.

O: 4.25 This is a really strong BA stout from Clown Shoes. While not up to the level of BCBS or Parabola, it’s really tasty, has great roasty character, and is pretty easy drinking for the style.

Nov 21, 2015
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JohnnyHopps from Indiana

3.73/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - The beer was black with a slight mocha head.

Smell - The nose is lightly boozy chocolate.

Taste - At the beginning, I get the booze with light chocolate and some sweet malts. There is a metallic taste here that ruins it for me. Did I cellar this too long? The thickness combines with licorice for the finish.

Mouthfeel - The thickness is pleasantly coating with low carbonation.

Overall - I wanted to like this, but the metallic taste killed it for me.

Oct 12, 2015
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LiquidAmber from Washington

4.44/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours pitch black with a thin, light brown head that stays as a persistent film, leaving light lacing. Aroma of dark toasted malt, coffee, cocoa, vanilla and light bourbon. Flavor is wonderfully integrated dark toasted malt, dark chocolate, hints of coffee, oaky vanilla and light bourbon, smooth and mellow, finishing with nice bourbon and toasted malt; only a hint of char. Excellent, quite creamy body with moderate carbonation. Well, I accidentally had this in the basement for longer than I intended, but it is none the worse for the cellaring. I have not tried this fresh, so the the nice creaminess and balance may be partially due to short aging. In any case, this is a wonderfully balanced and mellow barreled stout, hiding the ABV until the very end where it is noticeable only as a pleasant bourbon kick in the finish. Very nicely done and flavorful. Wish I had picked up two of these. I buy Clown Shoes when I'm in California, but wish I would see it more often. Excellent.

Aug 05, 2015
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DrDemento456 from Pennsylvania

4.27/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Not sure why my beer review got deleted but all I had to say is I got it cheap (11.75 with 20 percent discount total 9.50) and pre aged (at least a year on it)

It was a very balanced Imperial stout smooth for the ABV and I would get it again if brewed.

Mar 21, 2015
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TreyIsWilson from Michigan

4.22/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottled on 7/18/13

A - Pours a very dark brown with a thin tan head. Lots of soapy lacing.

S - Aroma is sweet chocolate and bourbon.

T - The taste follows the aroma. Upfront there is a strong mix of dark chocolate, coffee, and bourbon. The finish has more bourbon notes and a lingering booziness.

M - Full bodied with medium carbonation. Mouthfeel is smooth a sticky finish.

O - This is a very nice bourbon barrel stout. The flavors are very full and rich. Even with 18 months on it the finish was still on the hot side.

Jan 10, 2015
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MistahBeah from Massachusetts

5/5  rDev +16.8%

Pours completely black with a quarter inch of tan head. Decent retention. Spots of sudsy lacing on the glass. No visible carbonation

Aromas of semisweet dark chocolate, bourbon, oak and vanilla. A hint of smoke. Heavy roasty notes. Toffee and sweetened coffee. More wood notes. Great balance of sweet and earthy.

Flavors burst with dark chocolate, toffee, vanilla. Boozy bourbon with plenty of oak character. Dark roasted coffee, toasted coconut. Finish is dryer with earthy and oak notes shining.

Feels incredibly smooth. Full bodied. A touch of heat from the alcohol which is otherwise covered very well. My favorite aspect of this beer.

Overall another fantastic stout in an awesome lineup of stouts from Clown Shoes. I am beyond impressed. This is better than BCBS in my opinion. I wish I had more...even just another sip. Well done Clown Shoes. Lifetime fan here!

Aug 28, 2014
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superspak from Ohio

4.32/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle into snifter, bottled on 7/18/2013. Pours dense pitch black color with a 1-2 finger dense tan head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with some light streaming carbonation. Aromas of big dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, roasted malt, fudge, toast, vanilla, coconut, toffee, bourbon, oak, brown sugar, and roast/oaky earthiness. Incredible aromas with awesome complexity and balance of dark/roasted malt and bourbon barrel notes; with great strength. Taste of big dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, roasted malt, fudge, toast, vanilla, coconut, toffee, bourbon, oak, brown sugar, and roast/oak earthiness. Fair amount of roasted bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, roast, fudge, toast, vanilla, coconut, toffee, bourbon, oak, and roast/oaky earthiness on the finish for a while. Incredible complexity and balance of big dark/roasted malt and bourbon barrel flavors; with a great roasted malt bitterness/sweetness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a very smooth, creamy, and lightly slick/chalky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is well hidden with only a light warming present after the finish. Overall this is an incredible barrel aged imperial stout. All around fantastic complexity and balance of big dark/roasted malt and bourbon barrel flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the big ABV. A highly enjoyable offering.

Aug 22, 2014
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Pahn from New York

4.7/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

22oz bottle poured into a snifter. Huge thanks to BA ClownShoesDreams for sending me this bottle.

Appearance: Careful pour yields a tight, frothy tan head with great retention. Pours black and leaves sweeping lacing.

Smell: Piercing cocoa and coffee aroma--very very nice. Sweet but complex, like the flavor of a good coffee liqueur. Some boozy alcohol aroma cutting through cake just out of the oven and various coffee and almond aromas. Definitely some oak and bourbon. Changes with time, but like the best big stouts, every time you bring the glass to your nose you get something you want.

Taste: Follows the nose, with a great mouthfeel to back it up. Sweet and creamy up front with vanilla oak, hot estery alcohol and cake, drying out with some roasted malt and a long oaky and malty aftertaste. Hard to put the glass down.

This is a fantastic beer. I've hated Blaecorn Unidragon in all its forms (e.g. Porcine)--tastes like ashtray to me... but apparently when you add some Angry Beast and bourbon barrel age it it becomes sublime. The smoke really works here... usually the "ashtray" impression I get is just too much smoke/roasted malt, but here the softer, cake-like and American oak flavors provide the perfect balance (and the smoke/heavy roasted malt keeps the sweet, dessert notes from going too far as well).

Just excellent, I'm literally saying shit outloud like "Mmmm!" and "Damn!" after every sip, and I haven't drank enough to be drunk yet. This beer is absurdly good. Reminds me of a souped up version of the better bottles of Firestone Walker Parabola I've had.

Mouthfeel: Better than the usual Clown Shoes BA beer: thick and creamy, with perfect (read: high) dryness cutting through the thickness. Moderate carbonation. I'm shocked that for once the feel is even better than the flavor (and the flavor is world class).

Overall: When you buy a bourbon barrel aged stout (and you know what you're doing), you're hoping to get something like this. Big complexity, every note working together, lots of oak, lots of the great nuances that make 2oz of good bourbon worth sipping on for an hour, intoxicating aroma--just great. For some reason it reminds me of being in the Bahamas and having really good rum cake; the alcohol heat is there, but it's not just punching you in the face, it's taking the sweet pastry flavors and elevating them, exposing everything they have to offer and delivering it to you.

World class beer. Compares favorably with the big shots, ie Parabola, BCBS, the better Eclipse variants, etc.

Jul 01, 2014
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neurobot01 from California

4.26/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle dated 2013 into a snifter at fridge temp, allowed to warm.

Look: dark brown—light seeps through around the edges, but fades to near black in the center. Essentially no head, fairly light carbonation.

Smell: indistinct bourbon, milk chocolate, brown sugar, a hint of toasted coconut.

Taste: raisins, brown sugar/molasses, some savory smoked meat. A bit on the sweet side, but not overly so, and balanced by the savory (and some mild bitter) flavors. Very very little in the way of alcohol heat or (specific) flavor.

Feel: slick, medium bodied, fairly dry. Not very heavily carbonated, but pretty much ideal for the style.

Overall: a nice offering from Clown Shoes. Fits in the middle ground between something (widely available and passable) like Dragon's Milk and (limited and awesome) like Parabola. Totally respectable.

Jun 24, 2014
Very Angry Beast from Clown Shoes
Beer rating: 95 out of 100 with 441 ratings