Imperial Biscotti Chili Hazelnut Break | Evil Twin Brewing

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Imperial Biscotti Chili Hazelnut BreakImperial Biscotti Chili Hazelnut Break
425 Ratings
Imperial Biscotti Chili Hazelnut BreakImperial Biscotti Chili Hazelnut Break

Brewed by:
Evil Twin Brewing
New York, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Imperial stout brewed with coffee and chili with hazelnut and vanilla extracts added.

Added by TallSaint on 06-17-2013

Bros Score:
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 425 |  Reviews: 53
Photo of JamieDuncan
4.89/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Photo of StoutElk_92
4.74/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

16 oz. can

Pours black with a dense creamy brown foam head. Smells like toasted graham crackery malts, sweet vanilla, hazelnut extract, chili peppers, chocolate, roasted coffee, caramel, smoky molasses, dark fruit, with floral earthy herbal grassy pine. Taste follows with more sweetness on the palate, lots of vanilla and hazelnut extracts, toasted graham crackery malts, chocolate, roasted coffee, spicy chili peppers, caramel, smoky molasses, some dark fruits, with floral earthy herbal grassy pine. Feels medium bodied, creamy with moderate smooth carbonation. Lots of chili pepper spice and chocolate linger. Overall a really nice imperial stout with coffee, chili, hazelnut and vanilla extracts.

 702 characters

Photo of drizzlemybeerzle
3.84/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a thick, dark black, definitely like motor oil.

The initial smell is slightly sweet with but the chili flavor definitely comes through.
First sip, the mouth feel is great. Thick and viscous but without being too syrupy. However, the flavor sort of let me down. There was a hint of artificial sweetness then the chili & heat come through.

I had high hopes for this beer because of the Evil Twin name, however it let me down. I wouldn't be in a rush to chase it down anytime soon.

 487 characters

Photo of Duncian
4.12/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of krome
3.75/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of ChipChaight
4.4/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Nunya
3.98/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of postalmarke
4.75/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of NolaHopHead
4.33/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Radcpa
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Riparianjoe
4.8/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of MonDak_Joe1953
4.34/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 16oz can into glass. Stamped on bottom of can is 'BATCH #001 07:09'.
Black colored body, with just a thin sliver of mahogany at the bottom edges when held up to light. Dark tan head which persists as thick cap. Quite a bit of strings and spots of lacing.
Aroma has lots of coffee, hazelnut, and chocolate. Brown sugar and vanilla way in the background. The chilies present more as a smoke addition.
Taste is quite sweet, and ends with a bit of vegetal, warm chili pepper. Most of the profile has a swirling combination of hazelnut, milk chocolate, and dark roast coffee. The vanilla brings a kind of aromatic to the taste, like a breath mint. The brown sugar heightens the sweetness.
Thicker mouth feel, with a slight burn at the end from the peppers. Good carbonation support.
As described on the can, the added hazelnut is an extract which results in a slight artificial smell and taste, but not enough to really detract from the overall experience. This beer is so loaded with aromas and flavors that it is far from a base beer with all natural ingredients. This is an example of an extravagant beer approach. It is best to drink this beer with its temperature above 60 degrees, in order to get full expression.

 1,227 characters

Photo of Damian
4.61/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Drank from a 1 pint can purchased at Downtown Wine & Spirits, Somerville, MA
Batch #021
Served in a tulip

Viscous, near pitch black appearance. The oily looking body was capped by a small, frothy, saddle brown head that quickly fell to a short-lived mass of bubbles. A thin collar encircled the liquid. Spotty, streaky lacing trickled down the glass after each sip.

The aroma was insanely hazelnut forward. Big coffee presence too. The was totally reminiscent of a hazelnut-flavored K-Cup. Perhaps a touch artificial but still really enjoyable. Rich and malty. Quite sweet. Brown sugar was apparent. Strong vanilla and milky lactose notes came through as well.

The flavor profile was also really rich and decadent. Super malty and robust. Big dark malt presence. Loads of hazelnut but not quite as much as in the nose. Strong brown sugar-like sweetness. Vanilla came through in the center. Good dose of creamed coffee too. The beer finished with more roasted malt notes and a just touch of bitterness. Some mild chili heat lingered after the swallow.

Excellent, fuller bodied mouthfeel. Creamy, smooth and supple on the palate. The liquid contained a fine, frothy, tongue blanketing effervescence.

I have really enjoyed all the beers in Evil Twin’s Imperial Biscotti Break series, and this chili hazelnut variation was impressive as well. The hazelnut was definitely front and center, and the chili spice contributed a perfect amount of heat on the finish. Is this beer a bit gimmicky? For sure. However, if you are a fan of pastry stouts and approach this with the correct mindset, you will likely enjoy it too.

 1,619 characters

Photo of aclockworkchris
4.62/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Peaches13
4.35/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Holderness
4.4/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L — 1,000 lumens passed through the glass reveals a motor oil black body that lets no light through, even around the edges of the glass. Lovely two-finger deep brown head produced with gently aerated pour. Good retention and great lacing
S — Rich milk chocolate, hazelnut, almond, booze, vanilla, shredded coconut, medium roast coffee, smoke. Decadent and sweet
T — Largely follows the nose, but with the noteworthy addition of a good amount of chili heat (but not over the top). This adds dimensionality to the flavors and cuts through some of the amaretto sweetness that is (overly) present in the base beer. The hazelnut extract is a little artificial tasting
F — Lightly fluffy and moderately viscous. Medium+ mouthfeel, medium- carb. Nice lingering heat from the chilis
O — Better than the base beer, IMO. Huge props to Evil Twin for not charging through the ass on their canned stout offerings


 922 characters

Photo of Avatar113
4.46/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Taphouse_Traveler
4.18/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of PhineasMcClintock
4.4/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful beer. I felt compelled to write a review.
Lacing is incredible. Nose is everything you would expect from the name of this beer. You get the base beer, but the nuts really shine through on the nose.
Take a sip, and then the chili wave hits you. But not over-poweringly so.
Pretty wonderful beer, and totally as described. Would totally bang again.

 361 characters

Photo of bobv
4.35/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Batch #001.
16 oz. can.
Moderate pour yields a huge tan head over a very dark brown body with sticky lacing. Nose of hazelnuts, vanilla, and coffee. Taste of chocolate, chili, coffee, vanilla, with a hazelnut finish. Nice feel and overall, a very complex and tasty treat. Cheers!

 279 characters

Photo of ryan1788a5
3.39/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

16oz can poured into a globe.

A: Black pour with three fingers of brown head. Retention is great. Thin, wispy webs of lacing.

S: Mocha. Thick fudge sauce. Hazelnut coffee flavor shot, a la Dunkin Donuts. Coffee cake. Donuts. Very sweet nose. Faint whiff of chili spice.

T: Cola and molasses up front. Fudge sauce. Hazelnut flavor shot. Chili peppers come through quite strongly, both in flavor and spice. Vanilla. Very sweet. Coffee roast comes through middle to end. Pervasive chili heat. Sugary sweet finish.

M: Thick in feel with a slickness. Coating. Chewy. Well carbonated.

O: A mess of a beer. Overly sweet and with an odd assortment of flavors that clash the whole way through. I did not even care to finish it.

 724 characters

Photo of joshhug141
3.9/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Photo of polloenfuego
4.12/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Quick from memory:

Look was quite nice, deep brown/black in color with a thin collar of head. The head breaks slowly, and there was good lacing throughout the pint.

Smell is amazing. I get chocolate, vanilla, hazelnut, chili and they dance together so very well.

Taste is also quite nice, the hazelnut and chocolate duel it out up front, but vanilla comes in for a few words. Finally the chili comes in on the end, quite light and tame.

Feel is nice and heavy, with the booze letting you know it is there. Thick and syrupy are words one might use to describe this.

A very nice sipper. And that is the only way you can really enjoy this one, sip it slowly and enjoy it. It was great to have on a brisk spring evening.

 727 characters

Photo of teromous
4.11/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the bottom of the can: "BATCH #001 07:43"

Appearance: The body is pitch black and the thick, medium-sized head is creamy textured with a nice khaki color. It leaves small spots of lacing on the glass. The head forms and retains surprisingly well for a beer that boasts "11.5% ALC BY VOL" (as indicated by the can).

Aroma: It smell earthy with a coffee aroma.Sniffing the glass is very reminiscent of the aroma of a coffee house or cafe. There really isn't any depth or breadth to the aroma in this beer but the coffee scent is really very nice.

Taste: Up front there is the flavor of chocolate. It is immediately met with this nutty candy-like flavor. It tastes just like a candy bar. There is a clear hazelnut flavor and, again, it tastes just like candy. It is a very sweet tasting beer. The beer does a superb job of handling the alcohol presence. It doesn't quite mask the alcohol but rather allows it to appear at just the right time and then quickly be shuttled away as other flavors try to take the stage. The beer does note one ingredient, "CHILI" (as indicated by the can), that doesn't really pop out while drinking the beer. The chili flavor shows up in the aftertaste along with some of the coffee character. It's actually nice to have this earthy mix of chili and coffee to even things out after having such a sweet beer.

Mouthfeel: The beer is full bodied and smooth. Drinkability on this beer is in the lower side given its abundant sweetness. While it hits the palate like a liquid candy bar it also invokes a restraintive response while drinking the beer. There is only a light bit of burn or tingle on the palate, presumably from the capsicum in the chili.

Overall: I will preface this with a warning that if you do not have a sweet tooth, to not try this beer. However, if you have a sweet tooth you will likely love this. It is chalk full of flavor and it is just what you would expect from an Evil Twin beer. This beer does not pull any punches. I would recommend it and it is good enough that I would highly recommend it over the standard Imperial Biscotti Break. I would drink it again.

 2,119 characters

Photo of CHickman
4.29/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours pitch black color with a 2-3 finger foamy brown colored head that faded extremely slowly, leaving excellent foamy spider webs lacing with rings as it went down.

Smells of coffee, dark chocolate, nutty notes, chili peppers, charred wood, smoked malts, faint piney hops, toffee, burnt grains, char and more peppery heat. The dark chocolate, burnt coffee grinds and chili peppers work well together but I didn't get any of the vanilla that was listed on the can. Smoky and brown sugar notes add nice complexities.

Tastes of burnt dark coffee, soy sauce, toffee, dark chocolate, hazelnut, chili peppers, charred wood, smoked malts, char or ashy notes, piney hops, smoked grains, brown sugar, cinnamon and earthy notes. I think that the chili peppers are mixing with the chocolate malts in a good way to give off the spice rack notes like brown sugar, cinnamon and mild peppery spices, but it works for me and produces a real nice flavor. Imperial Biscotti Break is such a great base beer that adding the coffee, hazelnut, chili peppers and vanilla did not necessarily improve the flavor, it's just made it a different beer that incorporated those additional ingredients quite nicely.

Mouthfeel is smooth and almost creamy with mild carbonation, nice char and smoky notes and only mild heat that works well with the chocolatey sweetness and light bitterness. This hides the 11.5% ABV very well and adds a nice spin on the base beer.

 1,439 characters

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Imperial Biscotti Chili Hazelnut Break from Evil Twin Brewing
Beer rating: 4.36 out of 5 with 425 ratings