Malpais Stout | La Cumbre Brewing Co.

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Malpais StoutMalpais Stout
Malpais StoutMalpais Stout

Brewed by:
La Cumbre Brewing Co.
New Mexico, United States

Style: Foreign / Export Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A meal in a glass. Brewed with 7 different malts, you should be ready for a full onslaught of creamy stout intensity. Broadly in the style of a Foreign Extra Stout, this is our heaviest and most intense year-round offering.

User Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 70 | Ratings: 341
Photo of CrashingConcord
4.02/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Two La Cumbre reviews in one sitting? Preposterous. I don't know what compelled me to write these guys off so quickly, but every beer I've had of theirs just reasserts regret that I didn't embrace them sooner. Elevated caught me off guard, Red Ryeot sold me, and now Malpais is the dessert course solidifying a wonderful evening spent with these fine folks. I didn't drink all three in one night, but anyway. This is one roasty stout. I've seen the word "acrid" thrown around in regards to this beer, and while its not the most appetizing term, I don't disagree. The burnt characteristic hints at almost firewood flavors, but long after the flames have died down. Not terribly sweet, the obligatory chocolate note is present, but the bold bitterness of coffee definitely takes a front seat. All in all, I'm usually a pretty hard sell on stouts, but you got me, La Cumbre. You got me again.

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Photo of rodbeermunch
3.75/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A mixture of black and brown. Brown head, 1/2". Good retention. Aroma of roast and coffee from the malt.

Taste is a rich experience, I thought it would be a little thinner given the color, but there is plenty of malt heft here even if it isn't roasted to be the darkest possible color. A very hefty amount of bitterness that straddles the black ipa kind of line/hoppy porter vibe. Plenty acrid, minor amount of char/ash/smoke going for it.

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Photo of cjgiant
4.01/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Can dated 5/2016:
A very dark brown that gives a tan head when at its peak. Nice lacing.

Nose is strong on the roast-with a bit of char on a chocolate flavored coffee.

Taste is more chocolatey, with a bit of an astringent char/alcohol burn that I wish were a little lighter (more noticeable when chilled). Full bodied with fairly bold flavors. A decently strong roasted bitterness holds the end taste.

Proper temperature is a friend to this bold beer, as it helps smooth the edges a little. I could use a little less bitterness, myself.

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Photo of Thomas_Wikman
4.37/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Malpais La Cumbre
I had this beer at the La Cumbre Brewery in Albuquerque, New Mexico. This is a great

Look: It is black with a two inch mocca head.

Aroma: Malty, chocolate, coffee.

Taste: It's sweet, caramel, chocolate, and coffee, it's all there.

Feel: It’s full bodied, thick, smooth, and creamy, good sipping.

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Photo of garymuchow
4.23/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Rich smooth roasted malt with coffee and chocolate in both the aroma and taste. Nice full mouth feel that is lightened up some by the fairly heavy carbonation. Black and black on black with a very dark head. Even the rough and grainy character, and the bitterness are smooth. It does feel big without feeling heavy.
Many thanks Onovomexicano for this very nice beer.

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Photo of Todd
4.44/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Viscous, Roasty, Malty, Bold

Opaque black with a massive coffee-colored head, this beer throws off a soft aroma with some roast, earth and ripe dark fruit. The mouthfeel is velvety, viscous and chewy. Flavors from the seven malts used in this brew bring suggestions of black treacle syrup, cocoa, caramel, roast and acridness with a bitter and smoky linger to the palate. Thanks to La Cumbre for making an FES. We don't see many brewers doing the style these days, and Malpais Stout is a fantastic reminder of what we're missing.

As reviewed in BeerAdvocate magazine #112 (May 2016).

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Photo of Wasatch
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Revisit: 19 Sep 17
16 oz. Can
Canned On: 07/03/17
Best By: 12/30/17

Poured into a Squatters true pint glass a very nice thick dark brown color, very nice carbonation, with a very nice thick/creamy one-finger plus tan head, which also leaves some very nice sticky lacing behind. The nose is very nice malty, nice roast note, lots of dark chocolate/toffee notes, some vanilla, licorice. The taste is very nice as well, malty, nice roastyness, very nice touch of dark chocolate/toffee, slight vanilla, licorice. Medium body, with a little bitter/dry finish. Overall, this one surprised me, very nice brew. Recommended.

16 oz. Can
Canned On: 02/18/16
Best By: 08/16/16

Pours a very nice thick dark brown color, very nice carbonation, with a very nice thick/creamy one-finger plus light tan head, which also leaves some very nice sticky lacing behind. The nose is very nice malty, nice roast note, lots of chocolate/toffee notes, some vanilla. The taste is very nice as well, malty, nice roastyness, very nice touch of chocolate/toffee, slight vanilla. Medium body, with a little bitter/dry finish. Overall, this one surprised me, very nice brew. Recommended.

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Photo of Benish
4.13/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured jet black in color with a deep brown head of a couple inches. Aromas of chocolate and char. Upon sipping, it started out sweet with char intermingled. Notes chocolate with some sweetness that reminds me of a milk stout. Has almost a lactose flavor to it. Then the hops come in and finishes it off with a bitter and mild earthiness. The beer is thick and chewy in the mouth. Another superb beer from La Cumbre.

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Photo of erk0607
4.54/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look:: opaque black with lingering tan, foam head
Smell: malty, chocolatey, sweet, although there's a slight sharpness I can't quite pinpoint
Taste: Bitter, chocolate, creamy vanilla notes, malt, cacao nibs
Feel: heavy, like a good stout should be, not quite motor oil level but still on the higher end of the spectrum. Minimal carbonation and thick foam.
Overall: excellent. Would get again without hesitation

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Photo of thebeers
4.02/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Black with deep garnet hues and two fingers of frothy, mocha-colored head that last a good while before giving way to heavy lacing. Understated aroma of roasted malt with a slight nuttiness behind, earthy hops and maybe a touch of milk chocolate and cherry. Creamier than expected mouthfeel with a burst of carbonation on the backend. Quite tasty, with light chocolate and dark bread up front, and then a fairly bitter hopped aftertaste. Nice.

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Photo of shareallthebeer
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The notes are correct -- this is a meal in a glass. So much roast, so much flavor, yet incredibly smooth on the mouth. It sits like heavy whipping cream... without the sweetness or whiteness.

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Photo of Shermski
4.11/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Tall boy can into a goblet.

Look: Thick black, non-transparent, some head retention after an aggressive pour, is very white (oppositely, ten fidy is a great example of a non BA stout that has a much darker/tanner head).
Taste: A complex non BA stout, immense roasty bitterness. Same deliciousness front to back.
Feel: Syrupy viscosity, thick, and smooth.
Overall: Excellent non BA stout, picked it because La Cumbre has good hops and I'm glad to see the quality carry over to other styles.

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Photo of Beaver13
2.91/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

16 oz can. Pours dark brown black with a medium creamy tan head that retains well and laces the glass some.

The aroma is sweet roasted chocolate grains and black patent malt with a little old coffee.

The flavor is sweet grainy chocolate malts with a heavy acidic roast bitterness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with smooth carbonation.

Overall, an OK stout. Grains and lots of heavy roast.

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Photo of TheStoutLord
4.41/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: Good and dark with a thin, tan head. Dissipates fairly quickly.

S: Smells sweet and malty. Very roasted scents. I cant really smell any alcohol, which is good.

T: Creamy, sweet, and malty. The malts are heavily roasted but it goes so well with the sweet, nearly like a vanilla, flavor that carries with it. Its creamy but a different kind of creamy from a milk stout I think. Slight bitterness of of the hoppy variety on the end, kind of gives an abrupt end to the creaminess.

F: Heavy and thick. I feel like I could float a spoon on this stout.

O: I'm a stout and porter kind of guy and this Malpais is half the reason why. I love the roasted malt flavors and the dark bitterness of these foreign styled stouts so I'm happy to say that this one is setting a great standard for that.

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Photo of ArrogantB
3.79/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

16oz can from a four pack that cost $10.99. Dark black, lots of lacing, short head. Aroma is dry, roasty, touch of hops. The flavor is roasty, yeasty(?), bitter, pretty good.

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Photo of stevoj
4.11/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

On tap at brewery. I'll admit I went for the high rated beers first, but there's a reason they're highly regarded. Big roast grains in aroma and taste, bitter bite lingers. Head fades fast, pretty thick coating on the glass. But this ones all about the roast malt. Really delicious.

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Photo of Harrison8
4.51/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Look: Black stout sits under a dark tan head, which leaves behind a light ring of lace. Great look.

Smell: Has a rich, malt smell.

Taste: A robust, filling malt taste.

Feel: Very good. Feels robust, and smooth. Excellent heavy stout feel.

Overall: Great impression of this beer. Seems to be done very well.

Served in a 12oz snifter.

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Photo of denver10
4.04/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours midnight black with a thick milkshake looking mocha head. Aroma is rich and roasty offering dark coffee and dark chocolate with a touch of milk chocolate sweetness. Flavor follows suit and with some bitterness from some hops in the finish. A creamy, heavier medium mouthfeel. Overall, a great stout. Hits the sweet spot for flavor, feel and strength.Really excited to now have easy access to La Cumbre's offerings, they are going to become a staple in my rotation.

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Photo of NolaHopHead
4.11/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

16 oz can. Jet black with thick tan head, fades to thin layer, coats the glass with suds. Mild roasty Chocolatey aroma. A lot of flavor in this stout, burnt dark chocolate, smoke, a little touch of licorice. All strong flavors but it works, with a piney floral hop bitterness in the end. Not much sweetness here, this is a bold one. Thick chewy mouth. Flavorful stout that gives you a punch of hops at the end, liked it.

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Photo of GRG1313
3.59/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Looks beautiful with black/brown body and deep khaki head. Nose is big assertive roasted grain and black coffee. Hints of chocolate make the nose pretty complex.

Mouth feel is good with nice carb and body.

Flavor profile is a little problematic for me. It has a lot of IPA character to me. In fact, blind I might think this was an IPA such is the assertive nature of the bitter tones - much more a hoppy bitter than a roasted malt bitter.

Finish is also a mixture actually of roast bitter and hop bitter.

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Photo of larryi86
4.17/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Thank you gatheredwaters for this!
16 oz can poured into a tulip

A- Balck with a three finger mocha head.

S- Roasted coffee, hints of chocolate, some smoke mixed with some piney/floral hops.

T- Roasted malts, a nice char, dark chocolate, coffee, some dark fruits, floral hoppiness.

M- Smooth, medium body.

O- A flavorful and easy drinking stout 7.5%.

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Photo of spoony
4.44/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a 16 oz can to a shaker pint glass. Sticker on the can says "Danked on 4/23/15." Reviewed from notes dated June 20, 2015.

A-The beer pours with a dark khaki head of about a finger. The retention is good and the foam is dense and thick. The beer is nearly black with just a bit of light getting through on the edges of the glass.

S-The aroma is a lovely mixture of roasted grain flavors. Caramelized barley, milk chocolate, coffee bean, a hint of smoke and char, and some dark fruity sweetness lurking underneath. The smell is big and intense.

T-The taste tracks the smell. I get some chocolate, coffee bean, a wonderful roasted grain flavor, a bit of lactic, sugar taste, and some dark fruit sweetness. There is maybe some citrusy hop flavor lurking in there to cut the malt flavors just a touch.

M-The body is big and chewy. The carbonation is softer and semi-creamy.

O-La Cumbre gets tons of love for their IPAs, but this may be the better beer. I really enjoyed this thing. It is huge in aroma, flavor, and mouthfeel yet I could drink a pint without feeling tired or overwhelmed. It was June (and about 93 degrees) when I took my notes, but I would happily drink more of this...especially in the winter.

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Photo of jhavs
4.38/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Brewery.
A= Deep dark black with medium brown thick creamy head, tons of lacing rings the glass.
S=Smoky, deep roasted malts.
T= Dark chocolate and roasty malts. Has bittnerness, coffee, and smoky flavors. Bit of earthy hops.
M= Creamy with moderate to full body.
O= Great export stout, good all around flavor, aroma, etc.

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Photo of russpowell
4.28/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours like 15,000 mile motor oil, but mocha colored head reveals tons of carbonation. I swear you could float a quarter on this head... Great lcing, rings upon rings, above average head retention

S: Roastyness, alittle char

T: Follows the nose, a little drak choclate & smokeyness as well, plus dryness up front. Dryness, smokeyness, a little carob & char as this warms; plus some chocolate, woody & leafy hops. Finishes with dryness, leafy & woody hops, carobs, plus a touch of char & smokeyness

MF: Creamy, medium body, carbonation picks up a bit once warm

A great take on the style in fact amognst the best I've had. I wish the carbonation & nose was a little more dialed in

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Photo of portia99
4.04/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

16oz can poured into a snifter.

L - Pours pitch black in color with a finger of creamy dark tan head with good staying power.

S - Big roasted malt aroma, coffee, cocoa, a bit of charcoal and some molasses and mild hop bitterness.

T - Lots of char and dark roasted malts, a touch of astringency, cocoa powder, coffee, hop bitterness, grassy hops on the finish.

M - Big full body, frothy carbonation - rather foamy, very dry and bitter on the finish. Lots of char and burnt flavors linger after the swallow. Pretty big for the style.

O - Very nice Export Stout. Big for the style in flavor and body. Quite bitter and burnt/roasty throughout. Decent hop bitterness. Had never heard of this one before - glad to have the opportunity to try it.

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Malpais Stout from La Cumbre Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.12 out of 5 with 341 ratings