Secret Stache Stout
Finch Beer Co.

Secret Stache StoutSecret Stache Stout
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Stout - American
Ranked #350
Ranked #14,997
3.89 | pDev: 9.77%
Finch Beer Co.
Illinois, United States
Very Good
Secret Stache StoutSecret Stache Stout
Notes: Vanilla Bean Stout
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Reviews: 142 | Ratings: 706 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of rodbeermunch
rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.77/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

The 2014 review train keeps on going. This is based on a can review.

Seems mostly black/dark dark brown color, 1/2" tan head, respectable retention. Aroma of vanilla, chocolate, bit of a pastry stout nose vibe going for it. Wasn't picking up the coffee they were selling.

Taste, hey right out the gate, I like this. Vanilla character is nice, but not sweet, even though there is a lactose addition. Good use of wheat here, plenty of flavor notes, but the body is nice and light. The sweet spot if you will. The roasted chocolate malt does start to bring out some coffee notes on the back end of the mouth feel. Kind of wish I let this one warm up a little more, it was just too crushable and I finished it too quick! But that speaks to how much fun it was to drink, and effortless I might add. Really wish more breweries would make these 5% stouts. Still nice to have a cigar on a summer night without having to crack imperial this or that.

Apr 28, 2020
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GuyFawkes from Illinois

3.84/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Unknown vintage; drank 7/5/14 @ the Yarchives.

Brown/black/purple hue.

Big dark khaki head; frothy, thick lace.

Cream, burnt sugar & oats in the nose.

Medium thick, creamy mouthfeel.

Cream, vanilla & burnt black coffee flavors; a session beer with bold notes for once!

This is messy & borders on cloying, but manages to be a worthy after-dinner treat. Split with a friend over ice cream, preferably...

Sep 16, 2019
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Lone_Freighter from Vermont

3.75/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a mug, the appearance was a nice looking dark brown close to black color with a finger's worth of eggshell white foamy head that slid off at a good pace. Messy lace.
The aroma had some black licorice sweetness, roasted malts, light coffee beans, some milk chocolate and ended with some dark chocolate.
The flavor blended all of the previously mentioned aromas together fairly nice. Allowed for a nice fairly smooth to roasty sort of aftertaste.
The mouthfeel was between light and medium bodied with a fair sessionability about it. Carbonation felt just a touch under with the ABV feeling on par. Finish was somewhat roasty.
Overall, pretty nice American stout, but I was wishing some of that black licorice would have shown up a bit more in the flavor and finish. I'd still have again.

Aug 09, 2017
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Immortale25 from North Carolina

3.78/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Duvel tulip. No readable freshness date.

A- Pours a fully opaque black color with two fingers worth of tan head that retains very well before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a mostly full sheet of surface foam. Resilient lacing leaves a thick solid ring behind.

S- Roasty, chocolaty aroma with some vanilla undertones and a slight metallic quality.

T- Balanced flavors of dark chocolate, medium roast coffee and vanilla. Goes down easy but doesn't have a whole lot of character to make me want to go back for more. Roasty aftertaste.

M- About what you'd expect from a straightforward stout. Medium carbonation and a fullish body.

O- Decent but nothing special. Would I drink it again? Probably not.

Mar 13, 2017
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Rimbimhoot from Illinois

3.87/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Very dark brown but not opaque, no head
S: Sweet vanilla bean, light roastiness, ice cream, milk chocolate, caramel
T: Sweet vanilla bean, balanced earthy roast, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, caramel malt undertone, coffee
M: Medium, good for a regular stout
O: This and Vanilla Bean Buffalo Sweat are great options for a lighter abv vanilla forward dark beer

Oct 29, 2016
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SHODriver from North Carolina

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

A: Poured into a nonic pint to a black beer topped by a finger of dense tan head that retains well and leaves some lacing
S: Smells of vanilla and roasted malt with some chocolate and coffee notes.
T: Taste is vanilla up front which gives way to some cold brewed coffee and dark chocolate notes from the roasted malts. Slight roasted bitterness but no real hop presence. Swallow is more vanilla and coffee with some lingering cocoa powder notes.
M: Not too heavy in body but definitely on the fuller side of things. Carbonation is slightly prickly and the beer has a semi-dry finish
O: Overall this is a pretty good representative of the style with some good flavors and complexity. Not a lot of depth but it does drink well and there are minimal faults to the beer. Definitely a sweeter stout from the vanilla infusion.

Jul 25, 2016
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JWU from Pennsylvania

4.07/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16oz. can poured into a tumbler glass

A- black. no light penetrates. khaki head, with nice lacing. For a stout on the lower ABV side, it looks great.

S- Roasty malts, with vanilla, and a light coffee note.

T- Walks the line between dry and sweet well. Nicely roasted malts, with hints of vanilla, a more aggressive coffee note than the smell implies, and some dark chocolate. Ends more bitter than sweet.

M- Heavier side of medium, with a decent amount of carbonation for a stout, but not over the top.

O- well done, almost sessionable stout.

May 22, 2016
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basaywhat from Illinois

4.06/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16 oz can. Pours opaque black with creamy tan head. Aroma is roasted malts, earthy notes, chocolate, vanilla, and and faint spice. Flavor is dry roast malts forward with vanilla, chocolate, light hop bitterness.

May 02, 2016
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Brew_42 from Massachusetts

3.99/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours opaque black with a 1 finger tan head

Smell- Roasted malts, coffee, chocolate, vanilla

Taste follows the nose for the most part. A little light on flavor.

Mf-medium with a decent amount of carbonation for a stout

Over-Decent vanilla stout. Not great, but good.

Apr 09, 2016
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deebo from Minnesota

3.94/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A pint can poured into a wide mouth pint glass.
A-2 fingers of dense tan head atop a black as night beer
S-milk chocolate aroma with lots of vanilla. Lightly roasted barley malt
T-lots of sweet chocolate malt with back end vanilla and sweet lactose.
M-nice creamy body typical of a good milk stout or a nitro stout. A roasted finish
O-a nice chocolatey vanilla creamy stout.

Feb 27, 2016
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Bonkinishwa from Kentucky

4.12/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Finch's Beer Co. - Secret Stache Stout. 5.3% ABV. 16oz can split between snifters.

Look: Settles pitch black, retaining some faint caramel highlights in the light. Small tan colored head from semi aggressive pour, which subsides into sticky lacing.

Smell: Rich bakers chocolate, vanilla bean, dark malts, and some roasty coffee.

Feel: Medium bodied and chewy, with lots of carbonation

Taste: Bitter coffee and unsweetened chocolate up front, followed by some roasty dark malts, and vanilla bean. Finishes sweet, with dark chocolate, vanilla, and coffee.

Overall: Big fan of vanilla, so any beer with vanilla in it, I'll want to try. This was a great example of a rich vanilla beer, greatly balanced by other sweet flavors; almost like a Milk Stout.

Jan 24, 2016
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do_ob from Kentucky

3.95/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Can split between two New Belgium snifters. Dark brown pour, and pitch black in the glass. About 1/2 a finger of khaki head initially, which fizzed down to a thin, but even lacing fairly quickly. Very nice aroma on this guy; lots of roasted malt, oak, sweet vanilla, baker's chocolate, and expresso. I'm enjoying just smelling this beer. Upon tasting, I get the same roasted malt intensity as was on the aroma. The notes of chocolate, coffee, and charred wood are subdued, but present. A decent amount of creamy vanilla on the finish. Great feel for the abv. Not nearly as thin as I was expecting. A solid stout, for sure. Well done.

Jan 24, 2016
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dar482 from New York

3.92/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

The beer comes in a dark brown color.

The aroma offers hints of vanilla, sweet chocolate, bitter roasted malts, peanut brittle.

The flavor follows with some more milk chocolate, slightly salty peanut brittle, roasted malts, toasted nuts, some bitter licorice, herbal hops, creamy lactose sweetness, along with lingering vanilla sweetness. A well executed stout for its ABV.

Jan 05, 2016
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Treyliff from West Virginia

4.12/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

16oz can poured into a snifter

A- pours pitch black in color with a small khaki colored head that reduces to a film floating on top

S- toasted cereal grains and roasted chocolate malt, vanilla & coffee

T- dark toasted malt brings flavors of dark chocolate and herbal coffee, cereal grains, caramel and vanilla. More dark chocolate and coffee on the finish

M- medium body and carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel that turns creamy in the finish

O- nice toasty stout with a good amount of chocolate and coffee

Dec 31, 2015
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q33jeff from New Jersey

4.45/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

10.12.14, Awesome looking beer. Brown-tan head. Dark black.Aroma is toasty chocolate. Taste: coffee chocolate, barley. Really smooth.This may be the greatest beer i?ve ever had. On tap at blend.
4.3.15 Can to Goblet. Maybe not quite as good as it was on tap first time I tried it, but still a very solid brew. Lowered numbers slightly as this was previously rated as my #1 beer. It is very delicious, but I would be selling a handful of beers short if I ranked this ahead of them.

Nov 25, 2015
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mntlover from Tennessee

3.8/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dark some highlights around the edges, thumb sized milk chocolate head falls slow with some sparse lace.

Aroma is roasted malts, some semi sweet chocolate, light charred notes, nuttiness and vanilla bean hints.

Taste is like the nose, sweet roasted malt to start. Not sure if chocolate is present or sweetness is just coming off that way. Finish moves to roasted bitterness, some coffee notes mingled with charred nuts.Vanilla notes are also present in the finish, sure there hops to balance out the sweetness but they hid well.

Mouthfeel is only medium with smooth creamy sweetness almost lactose like even though this is not a milk stout. It is creamy making the feel nice even though its lighter.

Overall a descent stout, defiantly worth a try.

Oct 25, 2015
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KYGunner from Kentucky

3.77/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This starts with a dry chocolate malt, Graham Cracker and burnt coffee. It hits mid palate with a light marshmallow and lactose-sweetness. Finishes with char and ember. Nice sessionable stout.

Oct 10, 2015
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hoptheology from South Dakota

3.84/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 16 oz aluminum can into a 9 lb chalice stolen from the malevolent hands of Thulsa Doom.

Appearance : A glorious pour of black soot and motor oil, glistening with gleam from the light reflecting as it drizzles out of the can into my Thulsa Doom chalice. The head is practically useless, like "Shoe Umbrellas" or gun control. Trying to measure it was like catching a sports shot on your camera right before it faded from view. I think I got 1/2 finger measured in before it disappeared completely.

Smell : A chocolate rain kick to the face from the Chef himself. Lots of rich bakers chocolate, mocha, and coffee bean. Behind that some raisin and plum. It's a well filled out profile, versatile, sassy, and in style, like the plus sized models on Project Runway.

Taste : Semi-sweet chocolate and coffee ground, with orbiting flavors of earth, nut, and coffee. It tapers off with vanilla-drizzled fig.

The finish adds the tang of the fruit and the swagger of vanilla to tie things together with a funky ribbon. Belches come up as chocolate covered raisin. Me likey. Can I streak naked with this beer?

Feel : Semi-creamy, low carbonation, dry finish. Unremarkable but still within reasonable approach. Like Uma Thurman.

Overall : Secret Stache was an interesting experience. I would probably not buy it again since there's so many other great stouts out there, but I'm glad I had the chance to try a beer from a new (to me) brewery. If you see it and like figs and vanilla with your stout, give this a try. If you don't ever see it, you're not missing a lot, so don't cry too hard.

Sep 27, 2015
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SLeffler27 from New York

3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A modest walnut head and thick viscus film sit atop the very dark cedar red to black (SRM 34-36) beer within a Cisco fisheye pint glass.

The aroma opens with burnt malt, then progresses through cigar ash, before mellowing out with baker’s chocolate, cashews, and molasses.

Dark roasted malt follows the nose, as does baker’s chocolate. Roasted bitterness gives way to molasses, and some vanilla. Nuts are present late, and the finish is long and bitter, with a light soapy astringency. Warmth alters the flavor, adding amaretto. However, this one is best after substantial warmth brings out hazel nut and vanilla. Coffee also shines late, with an addition of coconut and significantly more sweetness. This is one of the more progressive beers I have tried to date.

The full dense body accentuates the velvety texture and light carbonation, while astringency diminishes the overall impact.

Secret Stache is a good stout, probably best while watching football with nachos and chili.

Sep 13, 2015
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Bluegrass49 from Minnesota

4.18/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This one was really good if you like stout! 1 pint can poured into a tall glass. Very dark and creamy with a 3 1/2 finger head that lasted "forever". Definitely a keeper!

Sep 12, 2015
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SomethingClever from Ohio

4.3/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

16 oz can poured into shaker pint no can date

A: black in color with no light passing through pretty rough poor allows for a very small but creamy looking head that settles to a film

S: vanilla, roasted coffee dark malts with hints of chocolate

T: quite delicious roasty coffee and deep dark maltiness with a nice smooth balance of vanilla nice bit of sweetness I'm getting a slight bit of berries too

M: thin but it clings on to the palate long after you finish the drink.

O: pretty good stout I was hoping it be a bit less thin on the tongue but the flavors are great roasted coffee, malty chocolate the vanilla gives it support and give it a fruity taste. Just a well put together stout.

Sep 03, 2015
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uvachief from Virginia

3.68/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

16oz can into a pint glass. Chilled but allowed to rise to room temperature. Dark chocolate brown with a full finger of tan head. Lingers. Some lacing. Taste is roasted malts, chocolate and a little coffee. Hint of vanilla. Little toffee. Taste is pretty good but as all low ABV stouts not thick enough in the mouth. Too thin. Not chewy. Nice stout to have at dinner or if you don't want to get a DUI on the way home. Above average.

Sep 03, 2015
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teromous from Virginia

3.39/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

In a can.

Appearance: Black body with a massive foamy light brown head.

Aroma:There is a bit of an acrid aroma like a burnt frying pan and I can smell a spruce-like hop aroma. It isn't a diverse aroma but it has a very unique character that makes it interesting.

Taste: At first it reminds me of coffee and then I get a bit of charcoal flavor. It mentions vanilla on the can but I am not picking that up. It's a pretty average stout.

Mouthfeel: It has a pretty good mouthfeel. It is creamy with a medium thickness and an off-dry finish.

Overall: It's a pretty good stout. I was expecting some vanilla given the labeling on the can, and that was disappointing, but the stout itself is pretty good. On a side note this probably wouldn't be a beer that I would pick up again but because it is in cans I would be more likely to grab some for a camping trip.

Jul 27, 2015
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Laxadaisical from Minnesota

4.28/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This massively black stout is capped with a gorgeous, thick brown head, wafting roast barley, char, smoke, and roast coffee towards the nostrils. To balance this, there are deep caramelized sugars, crispy toffee, peanut brittle, dark chocolate, cacao nibs, a hint of chocolate syrup, and plenty of vanilla throughout. The flavor starts out dry, with the roast, char, and smoke moving into crispy toffee and peanut brittle, dark caramel, dark fruits, and a touch of roasty coffee. The vanilla bean addition just blends throughout the entire flavor in a rich, but not overwhelming way. For a 5.3% beer, the mouthfeel is full and creamy, characteristic of a much bigger beer.

Jul 22, 2015
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GreesyFizeek from New York

3.03/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Can purchased at AJ's Beer Warehouse in Henrietta, NY.

This one pours a fairly dark black, with a one inch foamy fluffy head, and a decent amount of lacing.

This one smells like slightly artificial vanilla, and chocolate, with a little roasted malt.

Unfortunately, the vanilla here is a little flat and artificial tasting, not bring a whole lot to the table. There's some chocolate and roasted malt, as expected, but the flavors just seem a bit muted.

This has a watery mouthfeel, with a thin body, and a moderate level of carbonation.

This is certainly a lower-end stout for me. I wish the vanilla had a bit more of a natural or authentic feel.

Jul 11, 2015
Secret Stache Stout from Finch Beer Co.
Beer rating: 87 out of 100 with 706 ratings