Heretic Brewing Company

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Beer Geek Stats
Stout - American Imperial
Needs more ratings
4.31 | pDev: 6.03%
Heretic Brewing Company
California, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Reviews: 5 | Ratings: 9 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of hoptheology
hoptheology from South Dakota

4.41/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

16 oz can.
Canned on 7/26/19 (oversight on my part).
Bearded Iris Stemware.

Hiss of the can, and we're off. Pours a really dark thick tar into the glass with a half finger of almond head. Sticks around for a moment and recedes to a fingernail. No lace.

Coconut and roasted malts come out swinging in the aroma right away. Not sure I've smelled sweet dessert coconut in a beer at this intensity before. Behind that are dark chocolate, vanilla, bourbon booze, cream, and metallic can.

Flavor is cream, coconut, milk chocolate, dark chocolate, almonds, marzipan, marshmallow, caramel, bourbon, agave, tequila, oatmeal, and chocolate cake. Fuck, what a flavor. Never goes overboard on the sweetness. The finish doesn't linger and there's not much of one to speak of besides the sharp whiskey and slight vanilla, so it takes a hit on the score. However, while it's in the mouth and on the palate, it just builds and builds. It's a swisher.

Feel is boozy right off the bat, following up with carbonation, then slickness, then dryness, then a touch of stickiness, and a finish of more heat.

Overall, a damn fine beer, and one that has held up well despite my oversight on buying a 16 month old $10 can. It sure is good though, and one I'd return to if I found it again fresher.

Price paid : $9.79 / can
Would buy again : it is likely

Dec 06, 2020
Photo of Dope
Dope from Massachusetts

4.6/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

A: Pours black with a small dark tan head. Very little head retention and almost no lacing.

S: Inviting and sweet aroma. Lots of coconut here, mixed with caramel and vanilla. A bit of chocolate too.

T: Very sweet dessert beer for sure. Not cloying necessarily, just lots of sweet flavors. Caramel and vanilla up front, quickly turning into a wave of coconut. Milk chocolate in the finish. Sweet all the way through, no bitterness at all. Hell, zero heat from the booze either.

M: Fairly heavy, not cloying though.

O: Really excellent dessert beer. Sweet but not too sweet. Great flavors, no artificial feel anywhere. Really enjoyed this one. Massive thanks to Scotchboy for the hookup!

Jul 29, 2020
Photo of ichorNet
ichorNet from Massachusetts

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

This beer name and concept is weirdly-brilliant and campy, so I just had to have it. Generic "spooky" green font with the beer name atop a poorly-designed can just straight-up telling you this is a 12% bourbon barrel-aged stout with cocoa, vanilla, coconut, and lactose. I'm in. I'm ready to suffer. Bring it on, Heretic! I haven't had this brewery's beer in quite a while actually. I think last I had from them was probably Chocolate Hazelnut Porter a couple years ago, so this should be something else!

Pours a tar-black liquid into my snulip glass. The head is slow to build and appears mostly as a deep mocha color with some nice coverage before slinking off to the edges of my glass for the most part, leaving behind some nice legs and moderate lace. Tight bubble formation for sure, though, and nice retention around the sides, as it were. Can't really complain; it looks like a big, fuck-off stout, so... yeah.

The nose was initially just really hot and wickedly foreboding (although since the brewery's called Heretic, maybe this was something I should have expected), but after a few minutes it really opened up, allowing me to get closer to the individual adjunct ingredients. Yeah, the coconut is pretty prominent, but I expected that to some extent. There's a lot of dusty Belgian chocolate and some of those alcohol-filled truffles in there too. Maybe a touch of amaretto, with some barrel juices going on as well. Lightly tannic and definitely sweet-as-hell, but there's also for sure some balance going on here. I'm excited to dig in to it!

Oh man, that brings me back to the early days of my drinking barrel-aged stouts by breweries like Clown Shoes. Hot, hot, hot, and unabashed in its adjunct usage, to boot. Actually really reminds me of CS stuff. Complex melange of sweet toasted coconut and vanilla with a medium-heavy body full of flavorful cocoa and chocolate malt combining in a satisfying way. There's a lot going on here, but it's well-balanced and really fun. A very good dessert stout that will undoubtedly keep my tastebuds busy for a good amount of time. Grab it if you enjoy big, intense, flavored dark beers!

Jan 25, 2020
Photo of Scotchboy
Scotchboy from Idaho

4.46/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

16oz can (bottled July of 2019) into a teku;

Pours pitch black, khaki/mocha head, appropriate carb for a big beer.

Big dessert-y nose with tons of coconut and fudge. Cocoa, bourbon, and vanilla all weave through the aroma. Not boozy or hot smelling. Love it.

Bourbon chocolate fudge with coconut comes to mind when you taste it. Again, not boozy, but the barrel makes an appearance. Sweet but not cloying. Strong notes from each the adjuncts and treatment. Love it.

Not chewy and not thin, appropriate mouthfeel for a big stout, finishes with a slight dryness that helps cut the sweetness.

Overall this beer is awesome for a one-and-done or dessert nightcap. Absolutely love it.

Jan 01, 2020
Photo of John_M
John_M from Oregon

4.47/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The draft options were limited at Victory Bar in Portland, or I likely would never have ordered this. My experience with Heretic beers is pretty limited, and nothing I've had from them so far has greatly impressed. Still, I figured how bad could a glass of bourbon barrel aged milk stout be?

The beer pours a blackish brown color with pretty good head retention and lacing. On the nose, this really smells pretty good, as I pick up considerable coconut, dark chocolate, vanilla light coffee and bourbon. The flavor profile replicated the nose pretty closely in this fairly sweet beer, with the beer displaying an intriguing soft, almost creamy full mouthfeel. There's really a nice level of bourbon in this beer, and it blends in very well with the other flavor components in the beer. Alcohol is also very well integrated into the flavor profile, and drinkability was really pretty good (would have ordered a second glass if we had stayed longer at Victory).

Really surprised how much I liked this beer, and how absolutely yummy it was. Well done.

May 21, 2018
Goo from Heretic Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.31 out of 5 with 9 ratings