Dark Lord Imperial Stout | 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

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Dark Lord Imperial StoutDark Lord Imperial Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
3 Floyds Brewing Co.
Indiana, United States | website

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 15.00%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
A demonic Russian-Style Imperial Stout brewed with coffee, Mexican vanilla, and Indian sugar, this beer defies description. Available one day a year, in April at the brewery: Dark Lord Day.

Vintage guide:
Red wax = 2004
Orange wax = 2005
Gold wax = 2006
Silver wax = 2007
Black wax = 2008
White wax = 2009
Green wax = 2010 - 15% ABV
Yellow wax = 2011 - 15% ABV
Red wax = 2012 - 15% ABV
Orange wax = 2013 - New Label 15% ABV
Blue wax = 2014 - 15% ABV
Maroon wax = 2015 15% ABV
Black with glitter flecks wax = 2016

Added by cretemixer on 12-13-2002

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,267
Ratings:
4,165
Avg:
4.28
pDev:
26.4%
 
 
Wants:
3,204
Gots:
2,045
For Trade:
179
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,267 | Ratings: 4,165
Photo of ehammond1
3.78/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle (2009)

Woodshop Classix
Anaheim, CA

(Aged 2 years)

Black on black on black and looks thick as can be. Very thin espresso brown head and not much lacing down the glass, though completely expected at this ABV.

A rich, decadent, chocolate shoppe aroma. The chocolate aromas are varied--sweet, milk, dark, baker's--you name it! There's also some dark fruit, molasses, coffee, toffee, and some alcohol bite.

A very (very, very) sweet flavor dominated by milk chocolate, licorice, and raisin, surprisingly. I wish the chocolate was more rich and dark in flavor, as opposed to sharp and sweet and that there was more roast and earth flavors present to balance out the extreme sweetness.

Thick, heavy, substantial, and full in the mouth with low carbonation--extremely fitting for this dessert treat. Very little alcohol presence for a beer of this magnitude. Bravo!

An incredibly thick and substantial sweet chocolate stout with lots of flavor and body.

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Photo of alcstradamus
3.78/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

It seems that I have just changed as a beer drinker. Here I am, opening my first bottle of 2010 Dark Lord since Dark Lord Day itself and I am perplexed. What is this mess I am drinking? Surely it is a flavorful concoction, but where is the greatness that I tasted a few months ago? For that matter, where is the greatness that I tasted over a year ago when I had my first Dark Lord? And then it dawned on me....Dark Lord is a fantastic after-beer beer. In other words, it is an awesome brew to drink after you already have 2 or 3 other beers in your system. By that time, the palate has numbed a bit to the harshness and booziness and the underlying complexity of molasses, coffee, toffee, etc. is allowed to shine through. But drinking this on a fresh palate?....?....a whole new experience.

I thought the 2010 was the best vintage yet (having done a full vertical recently before it) when I drank it on two separate occasions on that awesome Saturday in April. But now, I see it is a bit of a boozy mess of random flavor. If my local brewpub was brewing this I would tell them "good attempt, a solid try at pushing the boundaries but you came up short of greatness"

I am just different now I guess. I still prefer bold flavor, but bold in and of itself is no longer good enough for me. I need the flavor to mesh. But this is just a mess. My original rating was a 4.75, but I am updating it to match my current perspective. Original review text from May 2009 is below:

---

2009 edition

A--Pours pitch black with a motor oil consistency. Fairly hard pour yields almost no head, but a quick swirl causes a quarter-inch or so to raise up briefly

S--Sweet dark fruits, hints of bourbon, vanilla, caramel, tree sap

T--Holy shit this is like sipping on a marshmallow. I have never had a drink this thick in my life. Vanilla, dark fruits, caramel, fudge, wood, walnuts, slight booziness. This is incredibly complex and all the different flavors are incredibly balanced.

M--This thickest beer, and maybe the thickest drink period that I have ever had. Like I said earlier, its almost like sipping on a marshmallow. It is that thick and fluffy.

D--Word of advice: share the bomber. But damn I couldn't put down my glass. What a beer.

After my disappointment with Darkness I wondered if the other "hype" Imperial Stouts were going to be worth the money and effort to track down. After two amazing nights in a row with Imperial Stout Trooper and now Dark Lord, I am a believer again. This is not my highest rated beer, but if I was judging on taste alone it quite possibly would be.

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Photo of Brewbro000
3.78/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

2010 - Olive Green Wax

Poured into an oversized wine glass

A: pours a viscous black with a large mocha head that recedes quickly leaving spots of lacing.
S: chocolate, caramel and sweet roasted malts dominate with little hop presence. Figs or date aroma also comes through as well with dark molasses on the back
T: very sweet, maybe too sweet for me with little carbonation to hold up the viscosity of this one. Sweet caramel/molasses lingers on the tongue. Alcohol is not as hidden as I expected which is disappointing. Warms as it goes down.
M/D: viscous and velvet are the best words for this one. Very smooth. I would have to split this bottle to truly enjoy it. A 22oz alone is just too much for me. Probably a combination of the apparent alcohol and sweetness. Glad I got to try this one but I'm not dissappointed that it's the only one I have.

Cheers to OregonKnowsBest for the hook up on this one!

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Photo of irishevans
3.78/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours opaque brown/black with very little brown head, and smells almost like an english barleywine. the taste is very carameley sweet, but still bitter at the same time. it has a super thick mouth-feel one that i would expect from a barleywine, not bad, but not quite what i was expecting. drinks real slow. overall a good brew, just not quite what the hype makes it out to be.

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Photo of Treebs
3.78/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2010 vintage shared by ThomasHardy in line at the CBS release. Poured into my Deschutes snifter.

A: Pours like motor oil with some very dark brown hues around the edges where the light hits. There is some legs on the bad boy. No head.

S: Dark fruits and chocolate with a roasted malt. Faint coffee in the background.

T: Lots going in the flavor. Black licorice and bitter chocolate are upfront with some dark fruits and a slight alcohol taste, but there is no heat behind it. A nice roasted malt as well to finish it out.

M: Viscous and palate coating. Heavy with a subtle carbonation. Really feels great.

O: My first Dark Lord. This met the expectations for me and I'm excited to try other vintages now that I've had my first. Another big thanks ThomasHardy for sharing.

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Photo of pwoods
3.77/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

'07 Vintage poured into a snifter

Huge thanks to Craig(brewdlyhooked13) for this bottle. Long story made quick: Founders BS hits shelves, Craig narrowly misses out, I offer up one of my 4packs for cost or dollar trade, He says, "Well, I have this Dark Lord that cost me $15", I thank him lots. Properly cellared on both ends.

A: Pours pitch black and thicker than shit. Very low carbonation. I started pouring roughly halfway through to try and get a better head.. I ended up with 1/2" that faded decently fast. Nearly no lacing.

S: Even smells thick. Deeply roasted and burnt malts. Harsh old bitter coffee grounds. A slight smoky character in the back.

T/M: Very thick. Carbonation has nearly completely fled the scene. Hops have mellowed though a faint bitterness remains. More of that very strong bitter coffee(grounds). There are some pleasant dark fruits spread throughout the drink. Alcohol is still assertively present and lends a light bit of sting with plenty of warmth. The deeply roasted/burnt malts are complimented by a super sweet syrupy side. Body if fuller than full. Carbonation is basically not there making this feel nothing like beer.

D: Very slow sipper, obviously. The carbonation was the biggest disappointment, though I'm not sure if a fresher sample will bring it up to KtG standards. Great, nonetheless and I'll be having a very fresh bottle within the month.

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Photo of axeman9182
3.77/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle of the 2011 vintage, thanks to Dobby. This one was taken out of the fridge about 20 minutes before I opened, and poured into my Duvel tulip.

Three Floyds Dark Lord pours a black so complete that I think the lights flickered when I popped the cap off. The light tan head can't quite reach two fingers in height, before the foam quickly dies away and leaves a largely clean glass behind. The nose is a little weak (although switching to a snifter for the second half of the bottle did help), and it's a little bit different from what one normally finds in a Russian Imperial Stout. Rather than chocolate and/or coffee, the aroma is redolent of molasses, licorice, and cherries and currants. The flavor doesn't have that same dull edge to it, and also manages to incorporate some more traditional imperial stout elements. A brief flash of dark chocolate opens things up for a molasses/licorice/brown sugar middle that really serves as th centerpiece of the beer. A mild coffee note then slides into dark fruity finish (those same cherries and currants). It's varied and complex, and if the roasty grain flavors were a little more prominent, I'd say it was perfect. The mouthfeel here is one of, if not the chewiest I've ever encountered. The body is as rich and viscous as it gets, and carbonation is barely, if at all appreciable. It's just too heavy and syrupy in the end to be good. Darklord is one of the tastiest stouts I've ever enountered, and is especialy smooth alcohol-wise for a relatively fresh 15% stout. The brewing process could stand to be tightened up though, as from a couple technical standpoints this beer falters a little bit.

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Photo of drewbage
3.77/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A tall bottle of the infamous Dark Lord with red wax cap and the cool spooky label. Bottle procured in a nice trade at the Hopleaf courtesy of Silenius.

Beer was stored carefully upright and settling for 2 months in my fridge to allow the full sludge settling time.

Split among three water glasses with plenty of room to spare.

Beer pours into the glass like motor oil. For once, the description is dead on and accurate. Head is large, brown and holds forever.

Aroma is cherries, tobacco, plums, dark chocolate, piney bitter hops.

Body is milkshake like, thick, viscous and hearty with a long draw from lip to gullet.

Flavor is more dark chocolate, bitter black coffee and a sharp resinous hop bite.

Word of warning... don't pour out that last bit. You don't need it and you don't want it!

Overall, an interesting beer, but a bit of a disappointment from the brewery.

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Photo of bishopdc0
3.76/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Shared this bottle with my brother. A 2011

Popped the bottle with an t violation.

After reading reviews I was skeptical.

The nose is full of berry, leather and a hints of roast very nice and complex

The taste is all over the place it starts with a berry flavor raisins and plums.the taste quickly goes roasted but the sweetness remains. Make no doubts this is a cloying beer. I wanted it to be better than it is but frankly it's not. The beer seems unfinished, not fully fermented, as a homebrew if I miss pitched yeast I would be able to get a beer like this.

We both agree d if this beer had coffee, bourbon or had been more attenuated it would be world class

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Photo of weissbierdrinker
3.76/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2009 bottle. Thanks to ditmier for an exceptional trade!

Pours a black used engine oil color with a thick creamy tan head that hangs around awhile leaving behind very little lacing. Once the head fades the beer looks oily and thick, if it was in a bucket I'd seriously think someone had just changed their oil.

Smell is of cherries, molasses, burnt malts, maybe a hint of plum or some other dried fruit. Resembles port.

Mouthfeel is thick like you can chew it, and oily. Has lots of dark chocolate, burnt malts, and molasses flavors. Also notes of dried fruit, some cherries (but subtle) I don't like for my RIS to have a commanding cherry flavor. There is also a spicy sweetness right on the tip of my tongue.

This is an extremely complex beer, lots going on and hard to describe. I'd have given it a higher rating if it wasn't so damn oily and sweet. It hides the alcohol very well and there isn't an overwhelming taste of cherries (so it's very good in that aspect)
Overall it's a great beer with an obvious amount a detail in it, but I'm not sure it's worth all the hype, or maybe it's just to big a beer for me.

A definite must try.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.76/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A 2010 Bottle opened and split on 9.8.12.

A - Pours a very dark brown with a small dark brown head that is gone quickly.

S - Booze, chocolate, sweet wet cardboard.

T - Sweet chocolate, booze, coffee.

D - Heavy body with a low carbonation and a sweet finish.

O - The smell worried me with some oxidization, but it tasted very nice.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.76/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2009 release; Sampled December 2009; Served at 60+ degrees Fahrenheit.
Slow to form, but ultimately thick, three finger thick head that lingers for quite some time, but doesn' leave much in the way of lacing on the sides of my 25cl tulip glass. The beer is pitch black of cours. Aroma of coffee liquor, dark chocolate, sweetened roasted malt, some smooth alcohol notes. Much more simplistic than I remember, but it is still rich and definitely satisfies my current hunger for a rich stout.

This beer is definitely thick, rich and mouth coating; definitely on the syrupy side of the beer texture spectrum. Quite sweet, which really helps to temper the huge roast character, but in the finish the roast becomes quite bitter and perhaps even a bit astringent; the sweetness never fades as both the roast and the rich sweetness really lingers on the palate for a long time. The dark notes in this beer are layered with bitter black coffee, dark chocolate, acidic roast malt and burnt grain notes. The mouthfeel is quite rich, but can seem a bit thin at times compared to what I remember this beer being.

When I first had this in 2004, it was so rich and so decadent compared to anything else I had ever had. This definitely hasn't withstood the test of time. This is definitely a grand example of the decadent American take on the style, but really isn't nearly as lush, rich or complex as my memory had it being.

2004 bottle release, Sampled April 2004
4.55 total
4/4.5/5/4/4.5
Strong notes of alcohol and port. Notes of roast malt, coffee, toffee, chocolate liquor, are also found in the nose. The beer is thick viscous, and pours a deep midnight black color with a bit of carbonation but only a dusting of bubbles on the surface. When roused a thick creamy dark brown head forms, one of the darkest heads I have ever seen.

Holy shit, I have never tasted a beer with such a stupefyingly thick body as this. It is very creamy and coats my mouth, it is like sipping on syrup. As expected with this body, it is quite sweet. The sweetness is accentuated by a fresh hop flavor, that when combined give this beer a concentrated fruitiness. This thing must have been heavily hopped in order to have such prominent hop flavor in an Imperial Stout of this stature. From the front to the middle back of this beer you would guess that this was a bottle of concentrated hop nectar, floral character abounds with, grapefruit, bergamot, cherry, concentrated raisin and plum.

The alcohol is not nearly as evident in the taste and the dark malt flavors are not as strong as I was expecting, the fresh hop character seems to mute them out quite a bit. The finish is quite bitter, though with the thick mouth-coating malt sweetness it is hard to pick out at first, but it is really the lingering bitterness long after the beer has left my mouth that lets you know that this is bittered quite well. The dark malt flavors kick in the end as well, just before the bitterness. Notes of concentrated espresso, bitter chocolate, burnt raisin, burnt caramel.

I must admit that with this intense fresh hop flavor, I am not sure that I want to hold on to the rest of these for a long time, though the 4 inches of sludge at the bottom of this bottle (even after a month of sitting) say that I need to move these to my lagering fridge for quite a bit. The fresh hop flavor is quite good right now, and it is so dominant that I can not even guess how this beer will continue to age. I have a feeling that in a year or two this will be a totally and unexpectedly different beer from what it is now. I have no doubt that the Dark Lord will age gracefully for the next 10 or even 20 years, but will it be better than it is now. Oh well only time will tell, I will just have to hang on to a couple over the years.

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Photo of Rbald42
3.76/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 much-debated vintage opened tonight. Thanks to Alen (RIP) for the beer. When I started BA, I thought that this beer was the end-all be-all of beers to try. Boy did I have a lot to learn.

A- Black as night, dark dark dark with chocolate 1 finger head. Looks good
S- One of the weaker points as far as this vintage is concerned. I get a strong soy/smoky aroma on first whiff (not good). Hints of chocolate and and roasted notes. Kinda smells like prime rib for a split second.
T- On first sip I got an initial soyness from the beer, but it lessened as I drank onward. I get dark roasted malts and chocolate with hints of coffee and a milky sweetness mixed with toffee.
M- Thick and dare I say "chewy" sticky and coats the mouth. Slightly cloying and sticky sweet in a not-so good way.
D- Average, there is a lot to tackle in a single bottle. The sweetness and soy flavors make it quite a chore to finish off a single bottle. I kinda enjoyed it however. Glad I tried one, don't think I'll trade for another anytime soon.

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Photo of MrPlayboy
3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

Vintage 2014

Poured into a snifter and decided to crack this bottle to celebrate some recent success at work.

Smells nice, like a boozy RIS.

Taste.... sooo sweet! And syrupy and thick like molasses and just overly sweet. I get some roasted notes and a little cocoa and hints of coffee but the cloying sweetness is overpowering. Not impressed.

The high ABV is well hidden but the mouthfeel is very low on carbonation. Its like a day old opened bottle of Darkness with 5 extra spoonfuls of sugar.

Not worth the hype. Too sweet and not complex. I can't finish this bomber. Corking it for tomorrow where I'll grin and bare it since I can't stand to waste this bottle. Damnit.

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Photo of oline73
3.75/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I was able to try the 2007-2011 versions of this beer side by side during a tasting this past weekend. My rating is from the 2011 version, which was my favorite. Poured into my Colossus snifter.

Appearance: Pours almost black with just a little bit of light coming through at the very edge of the glass. There is a layer of tan carbonation that disappears completely.

Smell: Sweet with some cocoa and caramel. There is a bitterness from the roasted malt and some molasses in there as well.

Taste: Lots of sweetness up front. There is a strong presence of roasted malt with some chocolate and brown sugar. There is some dark fruit flavor mixed in there as well. This version has a slight metallic taste to it that seemed to show up even more in the older versions. There is a mild hop bitterness in the finish as well.

Mouthfeel: The body on this one is quite thick with tingly carbonation and a dry finish. Quite nice.

Overall: There is a metallic taste that I'm getting in all of the versions that isn't completely pleasing. Everything about this beer is good enough and I'll probably try the future versions.

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Photo of CaptainTripps
3.75/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

2010 vintage - olive green wax
22oz bomber poured into a duvel tulip
This beer along with another have been sitting in the cellar for a long time, opened this puppy up at a little tasting held last weekend along with some college buddies. Lets see how it did...

A: The Dark Lord poured a mean pitch black black. No light is EVER going to come through this beer. Had a small dark mocha head, about one fingers worth.

S: There is alot of roastedness in there. Pretty sweet smelling beer as well which is interesting for such a big RIS. Chocolate and coffee are big factors in the smell. What really brings the sweetness up is the dark fruit character that is present - something i have never smelt in a imperial stout. Figs, raisons, plums. Very interesting. Also some alcohol heat as well

T: THIS BEER IS BIGGGG. Following the nose nicely, this beer has alot of coffee, roasted malts and chocolate characters present. Again, the beer has a wierd dark fruit thing going on thats pretty interesting. The major draw back to this beer? - Sweetness. This beer is over the top sweet almosting cloying. Bring down the sweetness and this would be a stellar beer. Alcohol plays another big factor in the taste of this beer. Pretty boozy with some sips.

M: THICK THICK THICK like maple syrup, thought they put used motor oil in my beer. The thickness is kind of nice. Carbonation is a little low but what would you expect from such a HUGE RIS? Alcohol is high, a little hot and almost border line overboard but not quite.

D: A little above average with this guy, pretty huge RIS that would be very hard to put many down. Also a little bit to sweet for my liking, but great flavors are packed into the beer. Pretty impressed.

Weekend tasting results: Out of the only three RIS's we had in the entire tasting, beer finished 3rd following Bourbon County Brand Stout and Ivan the Terrible.

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Photo of zac16125
3.74/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber poured into a snifter
Vintage 2011

A big thanks to kundog18 for the trade.

A: Pours a somewhat viscous very dark brown with some lighter browning on the edges.  A very agressive pour yields only 1/2 fingers of light mocha colored head, which dissipates very quickly to only the slightest outer ring. Leaves effectively zero lacing.

S: Big dark fruit aroma, along with chocolate and a hint of coffee.  Lots of raisin, fig and some overripe plum.  Black licorice, vanilla and some mild booze.  Really nice.

T: Sweeter than the nose. Again some dark fruits but also tons of molasses, caramel and toffee, along with notes of black licorice, hints of roasted malt, and  coffee and dark chocolate on the back end. Some complexity but overall just too sweet.   Some other charactericts strengthen as it warms but the sweetness still becomes cloying.  

M/D: Quite a syrupy mouthfeel but  smooth. Carbonation is appropriately low.  On the heavier side of medium bodied, but certainly not as thick as some stouts.  The absurd 15% ABV is incredibly well masked, although I almost wish some booze would come out in the taste to balance out the sweetness.  Drinkability is below average, mostly due to cloying sweetness.  

O: Overall, this is a pretty big miss for me.  The aroma is great, and the ability to mask a huge ABV is impressive, but the palate profile is just way too sweet.  Im not saying its a bad beer, but I struggle to see it being a top 100.  IMO its not even in the same league as some of the other big  stouts I have tried.  I would drink this again if it were offered to me, but with so many great stouts available, I don't see myself making an effort to get this one again.  

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Photo of zoolzoo
3.74/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

2010 Vintage

A: Chocolate syrup pour, completely opaque. Barely a tan head, almost no sign of carbonation.

S: Dark chocolate with roasty undertones. Coffee, black cherry ice cream. Alcohol is pretty subdued to my surprise.

T: Initial flavor is a clash of soy sauce and terribly sweet molasses. Lots of grain and char mid palate. Dark cherry and raisin are scattered throughout. Finish is a slight impression of coffee and some hop bitterness. 15% is incredibly masked....

M: Diabetic sludge.

O: A good imperial stout, not one for the record books. Still, this is one you have to try at least once right? Over rated in my opinion. Too sweet for its own good, unless you are really into that kinda stuff. A nice one to really sip on over the course of the night, gets better with warmth and oxidation.

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Photo of claspada
3.73/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Update: Sampled the 2006 version this past weekend (9/21/12) and it was exponentially better than the newer examples and it wasn't an age difference. The smaller batches of this were much better according to HimerMan who brought out this gem and I have no reason to challenge him; ramping up production of any beer will undoubtedly lower quality as with anything, food, beer or otherwise.

Pre-2007 Rating: 4.25 but I'm leaving the rating here to reflect newer examples as that is what most will find available.

Sampled the White Wax (2009) and the Yellow Wax (2011) back to back. I'll review the older vintage despite there being very little difference between the two.

Pours a deep dark viscous black color with a thin brown head that fades to leave some thin lacing on the glass.

Aromas begin with dark robust roasted malts, dark and milk chocolate and roasted coffee beans. As it warms I can get some of the dark fruit notes as well as the faintest note of hops.

The tastes follow the nose with some semi-sweet dark chocolate complemented by mild flavors of espresso and dark caramelized malts. The malt character is as hearty as you will find with a mild bitter hop presence. As it warms you get some of the dark fruits (prunes) and some emerging boozy alcohol. The flavors get increasingly sweet to the point of being a chore to finish.

The mouthfeel is extremely heavy bodied with light-to-medium carbonation. The finish is sticky and borders on being cloyingly sweet if not for the extreme roasted malts to add some dry character.

Overall, 5 years ago this may have been a revolutionary beer that may have deserved such high praise but in today's ever expanded craft beer world this is merely ordinary. Not that is is a bad beer but it's not one I particularly ever need to have again, especially with the limited bottle count and one day a year release in Indiana.

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Photo of EddieTheTrooper
3.73/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1

Have you heard his battle cry? The dark lord cometh and he thirsts for your soul! This stout is so black that light cannot penetrate it's depths, seriously, I tried to shine a green laser pointer thru it. It pours like motor oil, tastes like coffee and malice, and smells like boiled hell. This is not a normal beer, tis the port of beers. As delectable as the dark lord is, his curse is that you cannot drink much of it. 13% abv and an overbearing taste and thick consistency make this a special occasion beer. Damn good though.

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Photo of Rastacouere
3.72/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

No sludge bottle. No head to cover this tar black oil body. Who cares about head anyway, let’s not bother with such futile details. Restrained aroma, hypothesis that the huge body keeps it from expressing, but it’s still lacking in the department. You have to fight to get a not so exciting vinous alcohol nose, though you would never expect 13%. Slight fruity hints when warming, mild cocoa, even milder roastiness. Who cares about aroma anyway? Let’s not bother with such futile details. There it comes, the palate baby, the mouthfeel! Heavy, oily, thicker than syrup, fuller than 35% cream, neglectable carbo is just fitting perfectly with that beast. Chocolate cream. Easily the thickest beer in the universe as I imagine it. Taste comprises of extreme molasses. Big honey/maple sweetness. Excessive sweetness in fact, this never aimed to be balance and it isn’t. It remains rather sustained and with nice subtle nuance for a 13% beer with no in your face flavours, it just wants to be heavy. Well contained hoppiness (flower, herbs, grapefruit), chocolatey. It doesn’t taste fully fermented ultimately, but again, this has to be an effect from the mouthfeel. It just tastes incredibly sweet and without much of the fruitiness I’d like in an impy. Cloying finish, unique. 1 yr certainly did it good because as it is now, it tastes like malt syrup mixed with molasses. Extremely challenging and pleasant beer to try, but in small quantities. A beer to share, a beer to be scared of, a beer to admire. Congratz to the people at FFF for their adventurous nature

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Photo of Masonz223
3.72/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Smell: rasin plum vanilla milk chocolate
Taste: upfront just a ton of sugary sweetness vanilla middle of the mouth sugar coverd plums rasin maraschino cherries milk chocolate finishes with a tad bit of burnt coffee biterness and more sweetness
Feel: medium sticky body really really sweet
Overall: it's a good beer but overhyped that sweetness just isn't really balanced out that well

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Photo of lou91
3.71/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a great looking stout – jet black, almost shiny with a head that went away then came back bigger and browner with a little swirl. The nose was all alcohol with hints of bitter chocolate and coffee trying but failing to get through. Lots of great flavors but the alcohol is way too dominant. I like the hop bitterness and dark chocolate but the alcohol burn tells me that this may need a bit more time to settle. I’m happy to have tried it but I can’t say that I would give my left beer nut for it. Thanks to Kmpitz2 for this bottle.

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Photo of uvachief
3.71/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2014 bottle. Poured an insanely thick dark black. Little to no head which always scares me. Smells insanely sweet with sugar, caramel, coffee, toffee and roasted malts. I also smell salt. First taste is wildly disappointing. Insanely sweet and soy sauce salty. Caranel, toffee and roasted malts with coffee follow. However, that insanely sweet soy sauce prevails making this only an average stout. Wildly disappointed. Must have to age at least 5 years to drink. Been there and done that now. I'll stick one in the cellar and try again in 2019 but wildly disappointed.

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Photo of MaltyGoodness
3.7/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz. bottle - 2006 edition - Many thanks to beermanbrian

After a year of patience, it's finally time to see if the hype surrounding this beer matches the reality.

Pours a very thick, black color with a dark cocoa head that recedes. Mild lacing on the glass.

Aroma is huge! Sweet and sticky with a blend of roasted malts, dark fruits, cocoa, coffee, and a hint of booze. Wonderfully complex and rich.

Big sticky sweetness upfront leading into rich roasted malt flavors and a bold dark fruitiness. Plenty of dark cocoa and espresso flavors, and even a hint of hops come through in the middle. But, the sweetness remains constant from start to finish - nothing jumps in to balance it out. The taste becomes as cloying as it is complex.

Enormous body, quite syrupy. Light carbonation.

Well, it appears that the hype has triumphed again. While this is a giant beer and full of complexities, the sweetness just becomes annoying. It really lacks balance, and that really limits the drinkability. Certainly worth a try, but doesn't come close to living up to the hype.

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Dark Lord Imperial Stout from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 1,267 ratings.
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