Mephistopheles' Stout | Avery Brewing Company

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879 Reviews
Mephistopheles' StoutMephistopheles' Stout

Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company
Colorado, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 16.80%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Mephistopheles is the crafty shape shifter, the second fallen angel. Amazingly complex, coal black, velvety and liqueurish, this demon has a bouquet of vine-ripened grapes, anise and chocolate covered cherries with flavors of rum-soaked caramelized dark fruits and a double espresso finish. Cellarable for 10+ years.

Mephistopheles is the final installment of “The Demons of Ale” series.

Food pairing: We like Mephistopheles’ Stout with chocolate (60% cocoa or more), chocolate lava cake, flourless chocolate cake, tiramisu or traditional fruit cake made with rum-soaked fruits.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-06-2006

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Reviews: 879 | Ratings: 2,242
Photo of jslot38
3.73/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: Easily the most bad ass bottle I've seen so far.

Appearance: Nice... pretty sweet looking beer. Black as can be with a dark brown toffee like head adorning the glass.

Smell: Alcohol just lingering all over the place. You can smell the sweetness. Sweetened chocolate, some roasted coffee and a touch of toffee and roasted nuts.

Taste: Wow... now thats some alcohol. As pbr85 put it, "Well, thats a sipping beer if I've ever had one." The usual complexeties that you see in a stout quickly fade away to the onrush of alcohol and sweetness. But somewhere mixed in there is some dark chocolate and caramel, touches of candied nuts.

Mouthfeel: Quite smooth actually. Low level of carbonation, very smooth from the hops which I have to imagine load up this beer, even thougth they don't have much of a presence in the taste.

Drinkability: Yeah... right. Actually, I'll get through one, but that will probably be enough for me. Its a sipping beer all the way around.

Notes: Well, its tough to place this one. It takes their Czar stout and adds some more alcohol, some more sweetness and lingers along that line of taking it over the top. A fine looking beer, and certainly worth the experience with its highlights and lowlights.

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Photo of seanpachefddfa
3.73/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- poured a deep dark black color with a thick milk choc head. Settled quickly into a thin skim-like lacing.
Smell- getting some chocolate, coffee, dark fruits and some booze.
taste- getting all the flavors that i got in the nose but also got some rum flavor, molasses and some pepper.
Mouthfeel- a medium to full body beer. the alcoholic in this warms the mouth.
Drinkability- this one is a sipper. i have one more that i will let age four 6 or 8 months. If this one ages like i think it should i might get a couple more.

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Photo of cvfish
3.73/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - This beer poured a dark brown color that produced a frothy brown head which had great retention and laced the side of the glass nicely

S - The aromas produced by this beer were roasted malts, molasses, brown sugar, dark fruits, and a fair amount of of heat form the alcohol

T - The taste of this beer started like a syrupy mix of roasted malts, brown sugar, and molasses, raisins, and some toffee, but a sizable blast of heat kind of made you wonder whether this was a beer or not

M - The mouthfeel of this beer had a medium to full body with a light to moderate amount of carbonation

D - As a beer, I had to take off points for the burn that alcohol produced, good beers that I have had no matter how high still were able to hide the heat, but this one did not

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Photo of jaasen64
3.73/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle from batch #4 bottled in November 2008, almost exactly 5 years ago. Poured into a Gandhi Bot snifter.

A- Pours a menacing dark black with a thin, whispy mocha cream head that recedes fairly fast to just a thin circle surrounding the edge of the glass. Bottle opens with a nice hiss and pours with a decent amount of carbonation that settles fairly quickly but still has sporadic bubbles, not bad considering the age and style. Thin lacing coats the glass.

S- Aromas of dark chocolate, cocoa, leather, slight tobacco, decent amount of locorice, and some lactose sugars. Fairly aromatic, complex, and alcohol well hidden for abv.

T- Leather, dark fruits, figs, hint of grapes, a hint of tobacco, slightly chalky, finishes with dark chocolates, barley, fudge, and a slight acidic bitterness. Abv not too harsh, complex, haven't had this fresh but Im guessing the dark fruits have come out nicely with age.

M- Definitely over-carbonated especially for a stout of this abv, on the dry side, very full bodied, abv luckily not too harsh. By far the worst part about the beer, ruins the taste a little bit.

O- I've never had this beer fresh (although I assume its designed for aging) but I enjoyed this beer. The only downside of it was the mouthfeel, which was way too carbonated and a bit on the dry side. I wouldn't mind having this again but it's definitely not something I'd stock up on, luckily my local store had some aging in its cellar.

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Photo of everetends
3.73/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle thanks to a very generous hopsleeroy. This sucker is a Nov 2006 Batch #2. Served up in my trusty Terrapin snifter. I am a bit afraid of this one being up there in the ABV but I have always been intrigued by this brew.

A: Pours a very nice and viscous black. This poured incredibly thick looking. Slick and oily on the glass. This beer is bound and determined to allow zero light through the body in any area. Pours a really dark quarter finger of brown head. That head has some decent stick to it, leaving some lace on the glass. The lace does have to fight with that oily film this brew produces on the glass. Its what I expect from an Impy Stout for sure.

S: Well this does have a certain alcohol presence that only a beer over 16% could produce. I mean a really thick and rich wood soaked alcohol booziness is the first thing I encounter when I drop my nose in that snifter. Lost in all that booze is a touch of that soy sauce that overwhelmed a SATB, but its not out of hand and is an after thought. Then you get a touch of charcoal and roasty malt sweetness. There is also some nice cocoa powder and dark chocolate presence. Pretty nice and absolutely inviting.

T: The alcohol has been tamed well over the years and I am very pleased in that respect. The booziness is not as in your face as it is in the nose. The booze is thick and full of some oaky goodness. Has an almost bourbon flavor to it. The soy sauce does not translate into the taste at all. . . well, very little. Dark chocolate and deep, strong and bitter coffee is all over the place here. Lots of bitter coffee. There is also some booze soaked raisin and prunes in the finish. Not bad at all, but the flavors a bit out there and in your face.

M: This is a full bodied son of a bitch. Really thick and oily for sure. This beer is relentless on its coating ability. Really saturates the palate. It does have a decent amount of carbonation still in here aftr 3 years of age. The ABV is hot on the palate, throat and tummy. It is a bit overwhelming at time, but thats what one should expect from this beer. Aftertaste is all strong coffee and dark fruits.

D: Well this is a HUGE friggin beer, so its not one that you will be pounding a sixer of. Its a heavy ass Impy Stout that packs a hell of a punch. All the flavors and aromas are big and in your face. This beer doesn't play and lives up to its namesake. I dig it, but doubt I will be putting this in regular rotation. I assume this beer needs to age to calm it down and tame it for easier drinking. I will have to get a newer bottle for a comparison. It absolutely needs to be consumed at room temperature so more flavors come out. Not bad at all.

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Photo of dmfrench
3.73/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Huge but unrefined. Tiring, not tempting.

2007 Vintage

A: Absolute black with a somewhat persistent half finger dark khaki head.

S: Very inky and pruney... just the most fruity, motor oily aroma ever. Baker's chocolate, acidic hops, and perhaps a hint of espresso are far behind.

T: Pretty enormously potent... alcohol is blatant, along with the inky prune from the nose. Cinnamon and molasses are also there, but I'm not really getting chocolate or coffee. The beer tastes much 'brighter' than I would have expected, with a salty, hoppy, alcohol and carbonation edge. Actually, that edge makes the beer feel quite rough around the edges when compared to something like KBS or even World Wide Stout. There's also a creamy component that hits up front before it's dashed by the edginess. Finish is dry, still somehow on fruit, and a bit off. The more I drink, the less I like.

M: Creamy, yet a bit thin. I chalk this up to the high alcohol. Pretty well carbonated after four years as well.

O: Some bold flavors, but quite unpolished.

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Photo of Sammy
3.72/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very dark black with a small head. Alcohol is in the aroma like a hard drink. Average mouthfeel and above-average stout taste,but very bitter really with sugar in the finish. A bit of coffee, chocolate and roast. I would take a lot of other stouts before this one.

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Photo of Vixie
3.71/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark black, we are talking black hole here. Had very little tan head, which quickly dissipated.

Main thing in the smell was the alcohol, but there was sweetness as well. Can also detect a bit of coffee.

This is one warm beer. It is quite bitter, very much a hop finish to it. I can detect hints of coffee, but there is a fruity layer as well. Definite roasted malt flavor present.

This is a beer that makes you sit up and take notice. Very thick, and makes its presence known.

Hard for a beer this strong to rate high on the drinkability scale. Very much a sipper, and will warm you on the coldest night. A nice beer to treat yourself to, but would be hard to drink very much of it.

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Photo of Bonhoeffer
3.71/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Actually had a kind fellow who lives in Colorado send me a bottle of this just because of my work with Free The Hops, even though it does not benefit him directly. Great guy.

I'm afraid i was a bit disappointed. The bottle is very dark and mysterious, and it builds a sense of anticipation as you pop it open and pour.

Unfortunately, it was a little on the boring side as Imperials go, and too sweet. Hardly any notes of chocolate, and the roasted character was weak.

Very boozy. Not a top notch Imperial Stout. I really wanted to like it because of the circumstance in which i received it.

Had a Bell's Expedition the same evening, which BLEW IT AWAY.

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Photo of Hunter
3.71/5  rDev -10%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Jet black, nearly opaque brew with dense head of foam. About as stout as stout gets, I should think

Smell: Something astringent, chemical, with undertones of smoke, malt, coffee grounds, and anise.

Taste: Holy crap, the alcohol hits like a sledgehammer as soon as you pause to breathe! Once the shock dies off, flavors of coffee, smoke, meat, dark spices. Not for the faint of heart. Aftertaste is bitter and sharp.

Mouthfeel: Not terribly viscous, but definitely feels like motoroil. Scouring effect on the tongue, the aftertaste lingers a bit too long for my taste.

Drinkability: I wonder if they didn't jack up the alcohol as a selling point only. It doesn't seem to contribute to the brew's complexity or appeal, beyond shocking the imbiber. Personally I prefer Stone's Imperial Stout to this, primarily because I find it more enjoyable going down than this. This is interesting, a good beer to pair with strong cheese or pate or beef, but I doubt I'd drink it on its own.

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Photo of JamesShoemaker
3.7/5  rDev -10.2%

Thanks to RayOhioFelton for this bottle, among many others, for guessing his favorite Browns player in the Johnny Football LIF. This has been a longtime Want, really since I first got started on BeerAdvocate, back when I thought high alcohol equaled good beer. I still prefer higher ABV beers, but I've had some real booze bombs based on this mentality. 12 oz bottle poured into a stemmed tulip, vintage November 2012, nearly two years old.

A - Meph has a big head on the forced pour, maybe just under two fingers, but it dissipates insanely quickly. The Bros. called this beer a "chocolate wine;" I can see what they meant, as the viscous texture is evident out of the bottle and the brew is oily. Seriously, the top of the beer retains a blight brown film that just won't give way. Super black color, no light penetration even on the periphery. Despite the high alcohol, there are some active bubbles on the edges of the glass and a little lacing when I swirl the beer around. Looking forward to trying this.

S - the nose is a bit restrained, which I guess is expected from a two year old beer, but I can't believe that a 16% brew lurks in this glass. There's a bit of anise here, some sweet spice, cinnamon, nutmeg, and a rich meatiness. I'm reminded of World Wide Stout in the slightly bittersweet chocolate aromas I get, but it's not nearly as overpowering as WWS. I detect barbecue at the end of the nose, along with some sweet, dark fruits, plums and sugary dates.

T - jeez, there's an immense sweetness here, almost cloying. I find that aging most beers brings out one aspect (usually carbonation), and here it's definitely the sugar. Along with that is the chocolate, rich and creamy, incredibly thick. There's not a ton of bitterness, but the sweetness is just overwhelming that it's almost bitter, like a flavored coffee. The alcohol too is a bit much, not as well-hidden as I like, especially for a vintage.

M - like I mentioned, the sweetness is easily mistaken for bitterness, and the alcohol is strong to the point of discomfort. The carbonation really shows this beer's age. I can't imagine it being sweeter, but I'd love if it was a little flatter.

O - definitely a sipper, definitely not something to splurge on often, but worth it if you seek the stronger beers. Samael's is one of my favorite strong ales, so I was looking forward to sampling another Avery offering of similar intensity, but I was a bit let down. If I get another bottle, I'll be sure to put it away for at least another two years.

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Photo of baggio
3.7/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch 2, consumed on midsummers eve 2012.

Apperance: Black as night with a small, brown, head.

Smell: Prunes, Dark Chocolate, Coffee, Ripe fruit.

Taste: Dark chocolate, Roasted malt, Coffee, Ripe fruit, Alcohol, Molasses.

Mouthfeel: Plenty of carbonation in this one with tiny, tiny, bubbles. Quite drinkable but still boozy after all these years in the cellar.

A tasty nightcap but a little too hot to be really enjoyable.

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Photo of biggmike
3.7/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle, Batch 2. Pours an oily black color with tan head. Aroma is roasted malt, fruit, and caramel. Taste is also an explosive blend of dark fruit, caramel, chocolate, and coffee. This is definitely a beer to savor with 16% abv. Finish is long and goes from sweet to bitter. Very complex beer.

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Photo of sonicdescent
3.68/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Been sitting on this one for a long time, received in a trade from angelmonster. Thanks and cheers!

Looks pretty fantastic, I am a sucker for stouts with good head, and this one has a nice thick mocha beast with excellent lacing over a black liquid.

Smells strongly of chocolate and roasted malt. A bit of toffee and cream, and a tiny tiny hop background. Good.

Taste is very similar, this is a heavy beast. There is some smokey flavor over top of chocolate and cream with a slight bitterness in the end. Roasted malt is present, but plays a background to the chocolate.

Mouth is where I have some issues..this is a thick, heavy beast, which is good..but its just too highly carbonated. It creates a harsh feeling going down that masks some of the rather robust and good taste.

Overall, its a good stout, but one I wouldn't likely seek out again. Maybe letting this flatten out would do some help, but why get more to let it flatten when there are more solid stouts right out of the bottle?

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Photo of STEG
3.68/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 1.5

2006 Vintage Batch 2 16.03% abv

Poured black as the background of BA into a southern tier imperial glass, tan fluffy fine bubbled head rose quickly and fell jest as fast leaving a nice topping of bubble.

The nose is huge you get booze, chocolate, light coffee, dark raisin notes as well.

Taste has burnt, sugar, booze, light coffee and bittersweet chocolate. What a monster! Black coffee bitterness lingers in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel has light carbonation, and a prominent but not by any means overwhelming presence.

Not exactly sessionable but it makes you marvel at stouts like black albert with nearly as much alcohol that can hide it as well as they do.

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Photo of nick76
3.68/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

The aroma is very chocolaty, with burnt malt, molasses, grapes, and coffee. The appearance is so dark brown that it's almost black.The head is is large and tan. The flavor is like the aroma with lots of alcohol. The palate is super thick. This beer is quite strong. It's truly a demon in strength which is what does it in for me. Nice flavors but the alcohol is too hot and needs to be dialed down a bit.

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Photo of Med
3.68/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - Wonderful color for a stout. Mephistopheles is an appropriate name for such a black beer. Head was dissapointing with only a slight dark tan head showing from an aggressive pour.

S - Very nice chocolate tones. Not as forward as I would expect for such a big beer but manages not to to be bitter like many similarly dark stouts.

T - This is very good. The alcohol is well hidden in the roasted malts versus an only slightly bigger beer like World Wide Stout. Bitter finish is nice after the slightly sweet chocolate notes.

M - Yowsa. This is VERY full bodied. Oily, leaving a nice coating of dark malty goodness. Very soft carbonation, but it's not missed.Lovely

D - Most beers have a moment where they fall down, and this is where this one does. I can't imagine having more than one of these in an evening.

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Photo of the1DarkLord
3.67/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Nov 2008 bottled, Consumed Dec 2010.

I poured this beer a little more aggressively than usual... knowing it is 15+% i figured there would be little head as it were. Going into the Bruery Tulip, it formed about a 1 finger head, and which slowly receded to lacing bordering the perimeter of the glass and an island in the middle that looks like australia. Damn near close to black with a dark beige head.

Right off the bat, there is loads of raisins and molasses and dark chocolate. A deeper whiff reveals a bold roast vanilla aroma. There is almost a potpourri type spiciness underlying all of this (which i would assume is the fusels playing off the aromatics already present).

First Sip (I have to admit, I am a little scared. Having had this beer only once before when fresh, I did not enjoy it much... at all). Hmmmm this is not bad. Big bold sharp chocolate espresso up front, which settles into straight-up roast on the mid-palate, and finishes almost charcoaly from the bitter roast. There is obviously a noticable alcohol burn as well.

Mouthfeel is great, sticky, coating, lingering finish, all the things one might look for in an Imperial Stout.

I am not quite certain my gripe on this beer is a worthy one, but it is just so damn strong, I almost dont know how to rate it... for me the drinkability is the one thing that gets knocked down because of the ABV. Having had beers like Black Tuesday, Big Worst Barleywine, Dark Horizon etc.. recently, I feel like this beer can be more balanced and drinkable. Otherwise, I like it alot and give a thumbs up to Avery.

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Photo of Crowls
3.67/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into pint glass

Appearance: Dark, Opaque, nothing is getting through the body, small head didn't retain well, good lacing though

Smell: Chocolate alcohol with a roasted licorice scent, when the glass was away from me thought i smelled cherries

Taste: Strong alcohol flavor, had more of wine rather than a stout taste to it

Mouthfeel: felt like a wine very thin, not as thick as most stouts

Drinkability: Definitely a sipping style beer, one should be enough

Looks like a stout, smells mostly like one, taste not a normal stout, but overall a nice beer to drink to change it up

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.67/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Retsinis for sharing this one at mrbubbler's "end of the world" tasting.

Bottled 11/2012. Batch 8.

Pours an almost opaque super dark brown with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, dark fruits, and alcohol. Taste is much the same with quite an alcohol kick on the finish. There is a mild roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer but it's very boozy and needs time to settle down.

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Photo of AdamHart22
3.67/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the fridge into a tulip glass. The first 1/2 was cold, but the second had been out for about 30 minutes at room temperature before poured.

A - Black hole. You don't get a head unless you hard pour it, which results in a thin, brown cap. negative on the lacing.

S - Lots of chocolate and molasses.

T - Huge. All kinds of flavors at once. Honestly its over the top. Lots of chocolate, coffee, and molasses at the end. So much going on that it gets muddled.

M - Coats your mouth in that syrupy imperial stout goodness. Begs to be sipped.. it took me slightly over an hour to drink the 12oz single.

O - Glad that I tried it, but I won't be rushing back for it again. There are other imperial stouts, notably DF World Wide Stout, that are at a similar price point and taste better.

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Photo of JohnQVegas
3.67/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Bottle into snifter, Batch 2 (Nov 2006).

Pours black hole black with a thin, shimmering dark tan head that oh-so-slowly thins out to a rim around the edges.

Nose is huge rum-soaked raisins, a vinous boozey-ness, melted bittersweet chocolate - Avery's description hits it on the head exactly.

Taste is smooth and rich - boozey and hot, with a big wallop of dark fruits, caramelized brown sugar, chocolate, and a bit of vanilla, finishing with an oakey, slightly smokey, melted bittersweet chocolate, a lingering espresso bitterness, with just the slightest hint of sour hops, and more alcohol.

Mouthfeel is full, thick, higher than expected carbonation - but not a bad thing.

To be honest, the alcohol is the only real drawback to this brew - so hot that you start to flinch about halfway through the bottle. Delicious and well crafted, but take the alcohol down 3 notches and you have one of the best impy stouts I've tried. As it is, delicious, but with drinkability to be laughed at.

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Photo of nickfl
3.67/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Jan 06 bottle.

A - One finger of medium brown head on top of a black, opaque body. The foam slowly settles to a thick, creamy film and leaves moderate lace.

S - Strong toffee malt with chocolate, coffee, and fruity notes of black cherry and plum.

T - Big, sweet, fruity notes of plum with dark caramel and toffee malt. Cherries and spice in the middle; clove, cinnamon, and star anise. Thick, boozy finish with almonds, chocolate, plums and cola. Some lingering smoke on the palate with a raisiny sweetness that I imagine precisely mimics the aftertaste from downing a shot of molasses.

M - Thick, oily body, moderate carbonation, and a sweet, sticky finish.

D - This is big and sweet. I wish I had a newer bottle to compare this to (not that I would or could drink two of these), as I am not sure what the aging has contributed. The alcohol is well concealed with no harsh hotness or burn. While it smells quite nice and the flavor shows a lot of depth at first, the malt is more than a little cloying and finishes with a sherry like note that may or may not be oxidation. In the end the very sweet, fruity malt and lack of hops, or anything else, to balance make this a bit hard to drink. It has more caramel and toffee than roasted character and kind of comes off more like an Double Baltic Porter than an Imperial Stout.

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Photo of JoeBloe
3.65/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

poured from the 12oz bottle into a dfh snifter - black as the depths of hades - complex stout aromas, molasses,wood, soy sauce, among the al-co-hol vapor - taste is dominated by the flavor of soy sauce - alcohol taste is well hidden, but by soy sauce - heavy on the back of the tongue - glad i tried it, but one is enough here - kissed the wife and she asked if i was drinking soy sauce - there ya go....

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Photo of phishisphunk
3.65/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

2007 Batch 3 vintage. I have this one sitting in the cellar for a while and thought I would crack into a high ABV beer this evening. I chilled this one in the freezer in anticipation that I would be spending sometime with it through the evening. Served in a snifter

A: Pretty standard looking stout. Pitch black with some lighter hues around the edge with an inviting but short lived mocha colored head. A vigorous pour left little head. Spotty lacing around the glass.

S: The initial aroma is chalked full of dates and plums. The alcohol is also pretty prevalent in the nose as well.

T: The taste takes a pretty big U-turn from the nose. Initially I was taken aback by how well this beer has held up over 4 years. The beginning flavors are distinctly roasty with dry cocoa powder flavoring following up the finish. But It's not really that simple. The strong ABV lingers on the finish and long after. Mid-palate reveals a mild tartness camouflaged by the initial strong roast profile and the burning finish. There are definitely hints of charred, burnt malts, chocolate, marshmallow. Call it complex if you want. This is a big beer, and thankfully doesn't fill convoluted. Fairly well integrated.

M: Moderately carbonated. Not over or under in any way. Whats there works well with the beer.

O: Certainly one to seek out if you're a fan of larger ABV beers and definitely one that will hold up well over time if you're into cellaring. I like this one, but not enough to kill a 12oz by myself. Best split 2 ways. I can feel the alcohol burning a pit in my stomach. Enjoyable and recommended.

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Mephistopheles' Stout from Avery Brewing Company
4.12 out of 5 based on 2,242 ratings.
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