Mexican Cake | Westbrook Brewing Co.

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Mexican CakeMexican Cake

Brewed by:
Westbrook Brewing Co.
South Carolina, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Happy birthday to us! To celebrate our first year as a brewery we brewed a serious imperial stout and aged it on cocoa nibs, vanilla beans, cinnamon sticks, and fresh habanero peppers. This is the first offering in our annual Anniversary series. Here’s to many more!

50 IBU

Added by Netdigger2 on 02-01-2012

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Reviews: 326 | Ratings: 2,692
Photo of manfromanotherplace
4.49/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- like a red tinged black, thin head.

S- chocolate syrup with light cinnamon and vanilla

T- very much along the lines of the aroma but with added booze, it really is an alcoholic chocolate cake. exotic chocolate,light cinnamon, i don't really pick up any of the habaneros, that's not a complaint though as it tastes fantastic.

F- not overly thick and has some carbonation but the mouthfeel fits the taste perfectly.

O- an incredible beer, exactly what it claims to be is what you get.

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Photo of edthehead
4.34/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Had on tap. Lots of cinnamon, chocolate, and roasted malt on the nose and on the palate with a nice but subtle chili pepper bite on the back end. Moderate carbonation, and moderate to light mouth feel. A beautiful dark brown beer and mocha head that hangs around for a while. Overall lives up to the hype.

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Photo of HopBomb515
4.56/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thick, oily black pour with a small dark tan head that fades leaving little to no lacing. Aromas are strong. Notes of dark chocolate, touch of vanilla, coffee, spicy cinnamon and a bit of vegetal note from the pepper with heat on the back. Full body, smooth and creamy with a coating feel on the pallete. This was an amazing stout that stood up to my expectations.

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Photo of HorseheadsHopHead
4.45/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an ebony black with a thin ring of mocha head that leaves spotty lacing.

The aroma positively stinks of cinnamon, milk chocolate, brownies and fudge, marshmallows, vanilla beans, coffee, caramel, and burnt toast.

The palate is an onslaught of rich, desserty flavors. Upfront, you get the milk chocolate, fudge, and caramel candy, with a savory, umami note. Then you get a harsh dark roast coffee, and then a milky smooth vanilla, cream, and coconut sweetness. Finally it finishes with a zap of fresh ground cinnamon, dried chili pepper, and boozy warmth. The warmth is not harsh, but smoothly bracing and welcome. The aftertaste lingers, but of a smooth mixture of dark chocolate and cinnamon, chili pepper, and bourbon warmth.

The mouthfeel is lighter than I thought it would be, closer to medium than full, but slick and greasy, and lightly carbonated.

Is this beer worth its reputation? In this BA's opinion, hell yes!

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Photo of TooHop4U
4.68/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Bottled 05/23/16. Cocoa nibs... Cinnamon... Brown sugar... Cloves... Ever so slight habanero... Not too hot... Poured smooth... Minimal head... Undescribably delicious aftertaste. Huge hype but lived up to the whale status! Instantly one of my favorite spiced stouts, wish it wasn't so hard to get in Ohio

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Photo of lemmy187
4.26/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Similar in style to abraxas, bomb, and huna.....but much thinner and spicier than the other three. Decent look and feel, but the comparison to others in this class is considerable. Spicy, thin, decent cinnamon and chocolate.

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Photo of stephenjmoore
4.54/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Deep, dark, near black body with a thin, frothy, mocha-colored head. Cinnamon is huge on the nose, with vanilla following and hints of cocoa powder. Roasty smokiness in the back as well. Flavor is sweet and chocolatey up front, tons of cinnamon, hints of vanilla and a slight roasty heat from the pepper. Flavors are big and bold, but it doesn't seem overly sweet and still has the roasty stout qualities. Feel is full bodied with a lingering stickiness and medium carbonation. A huge, bold stout that makes great use of the adjuncts.

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Photo of OrangeMen
4.28/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2016 release
~1 month from bottling date

Appearance- Pours a black color, oily and viscous, opaque. Half finger thick, dark khaki colored head, creamy thick, dissipates quickly. Coats glass like a film, lots of alcohol legs and spotty head lacing.

Aroma- Rich dark chocolates and roasted malt, bittersweet and decadent. Creamy milk chocolates, vanilla, sweet sugar, caramel, earthy spice and cinnamon.

Taste- Dark chocolates, dry bittersweet cocoa, coffee, lots of roasted malt. Milk chocolates, vanilla, sweet milky sugars combined with cinnamon. Earthy spicy peppers on the finish, mild heat.

Feel- Medium to full feel, dry bittersweetness, lots of richness and creaminess. Moderate to lower carbonation.

Overall- Rich and decadent beer. Roastiness and dark chocolatey flavors take center stage, as the rest of the adjuncts are more mild and work towards adding some complexity. Cinnamon and peppers flash towards the finish and are well integrated into the beer.

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Photo of TheRossness
5/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The night was winding down. I was in NYC walking around the East Village when I stopped in at one of my favorite craft beer bars, the Proletariat. I ordered Mexican cake, knowing nothing about it other than the description on the blackboard. Needless to say, its one of the best stouts I've ever had and the best beer I've had in at least 2 years. It had immense flavor like chocolate cake. It was creamy, great mouthfeel. The flavors exploded in my mouth. I would have drank the beer all night, but the keg kicked and I got the last of it. This is a truly exceptional beer. If I could rate it higher than perfect, I would. :D

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Photo of gcasher
4.53/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Boom! Got a bottle in a Brooklyn bodega. Meant to be. I wish I could find a slice of cake this good. It is sweet, dark, well roasted, cocoa powder is fantastic, alcohol is hidden, flavors are balanced, and peppers are not in your face, but rather provide background warming of blood. Slow burn. What a fantastic beer and tastes great fresh.

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Photo of nerdboy19
3.84/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On Tap @ Mekelburg's Brooklyn

Look - Tan black 4/5
Aroma : Big cinnamon and spicy nose, with little bit of chocolate ,vanilla, and coffee. 7/10
Mouthfeel : Medium carbonation, medium-full body, might be a little bit light 3/5
Flavor : Cinnamon, chocolate, vanilla, coffee, dessert-like, spicy, hot chili taste in the end. Not that sweet or bitter. 8/10
Overall : Great chili stout but wasn't mind blowing or anything. 16/20

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Photo of gburns2767
4.03/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Where's the heat. After enjoying this beer each year I was a bit underwhelmed by the lack of heat in this years batch. I hope it is not a trend. I am now for 2017's batch.

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Photo of jcflorian
4.31/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance- Jet Black with thin mocha head.
Smell- Cocoa, Cinnamon, Vanilla . Loved the smell
Taste- Up front chocolate with vanilla second in line but the peppers are def there leaving a hot aftertaste I have not experienced before.
Mouthfeel was medium
Overall- While I have def had better imperial stouts, this was enjoyable. I can see how the pepper would def turn some people off, as I did not expect the aftertaste from it. That being said, I am stoked I was able to try it and would down the road def drink this again if I had opportunity.

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Photo of gibgink
4.64/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Having had Abraxas many times and Hunahpu the same day as trying this, I would say that Mexican Cake is the "hottest" incarnation of the three. The cinnamon is still present, which is good, and there is an ever so slight chocolate flavor in the background. Very well done.

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Photo of MattyTibbs
4.79/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Awesomeness in a glass. Being from New England, the legend was pretty much unattainable. Weekend trip to ATL, out to Cypress Street Pint & Plate, found MC on tap... got the last glass in keg!! Lucky guy, this guy here. Hopefully I'll get the chance to get some more in the future, but if I don't, It'll still be the best stout I've ever consumed. Word

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Photo of MacMalt
4.46/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle into snifter. It pours a color between a dark mahogany and jet black with a think, mocha-colored head and lacing. Despite a hard pour, the head dissipates quickly. It smells of roasted malt, cocoa, vanilla, cinnamon, and the habanero peppers. It's an extremely fragrant stout. The first taste sensation is dark chocolate and burnt coffee, followed by vanilla, cinnamon, and the peppers. It finishes with a nice peppery heat. Despite its 10.5% ABV, it is not overly boozy; it lets the peppers provide both heat and flavor. It has a medium-chewy mouthfeel and is overall very pleasant to drink. Overall, Mexican Cake is delicious and fun to drink. It richly deserves its world-class rating. I'm really happy to have finally tried it.

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Photo of FriedSlug
5/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is a fantastic beer. Dark, thick, brown head and no lacing. The nose is vanilla, cinnamon, chocolate, and sweetness. There is a bit of heat in my nostril. The taste is amazing sweet chocolate with perfectly balanced cinnamon and vanilla. There is a wee bit of heat from the pepper. What a great beer.

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Photo of Pourharddrinkslow
4.42/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2016 version

Look is just black with no head and no lacing, nothing special

Smell - Chocolate, vanilla, and spicy peppers. awesome smell.

Taste - 2016 is much milder on the spice than years previous, but I prefer that. (Also side note: can't believe I haven't reviewed the most sought after beer in my state until now). But the chocolate and vanilla is awesome and the mild habaneros with cinnamon compliment it perfectly. Sweet, bitter, spicy all in perfect unison.

Feel - Light body for an 11% stout. Mild carbonation

Overall - Well done this year. I rate this higher than in years past but if you love spice you won't like 2016 as much as I do

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Photo of Van_Zandt
4.84/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

From a bomber ('16) in a stout glass. Rich aroma; complex cinnamon-chocolate taste. The habaneros are just warm enough to make it feel like molten lava cake straight from the oven.

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Photo of gerite
4.45/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2016 Bomber brewed last week. Poured an opaque-black color with a brown foamy head with good lacing leaving a slight tint to the glass. Very smooth without much carbonation. Lots of spiciness from the cinnamon and peppers without a lot of bitterness. Was everything I expected it to be.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.98/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a nice large brown foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of black chocolate notes with roasted malt is pretty nice. Taste is a nice mix of roasted malt and black chocolate with some residual sugar notes, some cinnamon notes and some spicy peppers notes which really only become noticeable in the aftertaste. Body is quite full with nice creamy notes and good carbonation. Solid imperial stout thought spicy notes becomes a bit too much for my liking.

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Photo of Mateo2699
4.83/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Finally got my hands on one. 2015 version, poured into a snifter.

Pour is jet black, viscous and slightly oily. Hits the glass with absolutely no head initially, and bubbles up to a half finger khaki color. Settles to a small ring. Minimal retention because of this.

Smell is deep chocolate, roasted malts and hints of vanilla. Not much of a cinnamon or pepper profile until it warmed up, then it came out a little bit. Still very subtle.

Taste totally makes up for the nose. Chocolate and roasted malts initially, then subtle cinnomon comes through than you get that pop of habanero pepper in the back end. I found the spicy linger very enjoyable. Similar to the nose, the heat is more noticable as it warms.

Mouthfeel is low carbonation, velvety and very smooth.

Very impressive pepper stout. Comparing this to Bomb, the only other pepper stout I've had, this one definitely had more of heat going on especially as it warms. More viscous and flavorful as well.

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Photo of NolaHopHead
4.44/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2015 bomber. Had this pretty fresh last year and now tasting again about a year old. If anything there was more heat possibly due to some of the chocolate fading. Overall still plenty of chocolate in the aroma and the taste with a popping spicy finish. Thin to medium silky mouthfeel. This is an excellent pepper stout I will be seeking more of in years to come.

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Photo of wulfie85
4.25/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had this next to Abraxas, Huna, and Bomb! Mexi was the spiciest of the set, but with little pepper flavor. The base stout came through very well with notes of chocolate and vanilla

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Photo of Sabtos
4.01/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Motor oil black, with a dark mocha head that is very thin and fizzy and does not retain at all aside from a thin ring. Shimmering curtains of miniature, caviar-like bubbles coat the glass after each sip and quickly glide down.

It does in fact smell like chocolate cake batter, with no foreshadowing of the upcoming spice or heat whatsoever. Actually, more appropriately, its aroma is reminiscent of chocolate cherry cake. Cinnamon blooms with some smokey roastiness only as it has warmed.

Habanero heat tentacles climb around the edges of the cheeks and hit you in the back of the throat right off of the first sip. Black cherry and cinnamon follow shortly after. Chocolate takes a back seat, but as is typical of the habanero calling card, heat builds and builds. Fortunately it stops after a certain level, never becoming overwhelming, at least for me. Although, the first few sips had a little heat venting out through the nose.

If you had Xocoveza, Bomb, and Huna, and wondered where the heat was, this is the beer that will do it for you. All others should probably stay away. This has some scovilles that you can actually feel heating up the belly.

Mexican Cake has a medium body and is slightly frothy, but is also a bit thinner than I'd like.

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Mexican Cake from Westbrook Brewing Co.
4.38 out of 5 based on 2,692 ratings.
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