Mephistopheles' Stout | Avery Brewing Company

904 Reviews
Mephistopheles' StoutMephistopheles' Stout

Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 14.60%

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.

Malt Varieties:
Roasted Barley
Special B

Yeast Varieties:
Westmalle Belgian Ale

Hop Varieties:

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-06-2006

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
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Reviews: 904 | Ratings: 2,317
Photo of JamesS
3.63/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a very nice dark black with fantastic head and lacing. Nice scent, some nice burnt grains, although not as strong as expected. Same for the taste, it was a very nice stout, and the burnt grains were there, but there was very little else (I was expecting some coffee, vanilla, or something else for such a strong beer). It down go down very smoothly for such a high ABV beer, though, very nice and rich, silky almost.

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Photo of JayQue
4.15/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A classic sipper. Pours a dense black, absolutely no highlights or light getting through. I gave it a hard pour and was rewarded with a big dark tan head. Head retention good for this level of octane. Thick, temporary lacing. The lacing and head disappear without a trace after a while.

Smell is of dark fruit and candy sugar. Taste is very nice. There is just enough bitterness at the end to keep the predominant sweetness from being too overpowering and cloying. The alcohol taste is present, but not raw or burning like Mad Elf. The alcohol serves to slow the drinker down to appreciate the flavors and not fall on his face.

Mouthfeel is incredibly rich, There is enough balance where the sweet taste does not overpower the beer. Drinkability is about average. Flavors this strong, emphasis on sweetness and the high abv make this a 1 twelve ouncer and out.

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Photo of deg
4.53/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pitch black with a tan head. I couldn't see any light through the beer. I picked up some smell of alcohol and what I swore was figs. Initial tastes had a fig like character and a little alcohol, and then over time transformed into a roasted character like coffee and a chocolate taste. The chocolate taste dominated. The beer was thick and rich on my tongue. I don't know about drinking a whole lot of this, it's 16% ABV. One bottle was enough for me for one sitting.

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Photo of aforbes10
4.06/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from City Wide in South Bend. The last of the "big 3" from Avery for me. Pours black, black, black with a brown, cascading head formation. Big and delicious looking. Surprizingly fruity chocolate odor. Hints of coffee and prunes. Smells like a rich gataeu. Huge, huge roasted malt flavor, almost burnt. Never such a large presence of roasty, burnt dark chocolate. A light cherry cordial tang that works well with the big alcohol presence on the finish. Alcohol builds as it warms, but the chocolate grows too. At its best when almost room temp. decadent. Big and thick mouthfeel, but without being syrupy. A bit of a frothy, creamy texture too. Not overwhelmingly drinkable for me though. Too much beer to take on in one night. It'd be perfect to split with another person.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.23/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 2, 2006. Pours inky black with a very tightly beaded dark beige head. Looks rich. Tremendous amounts of licorice and dark fruit aromas. There is also a bit of cocoa and this is quite strong as well. definite smell of alcohol here. Equally intense in the mouth, but not quite as hot. Very fruity with rich almost port-like fruit as well as dark chocolate and licorice. Mouthcoating and strong, this is a sipper.

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.87/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Why did I wait so long to try this beer? I guess it's because I've had so-so experience with Avery beers in the past, and also this beer is typically $8-9 per 12oz bottle. I found it for $5.99 at Kahn's in Indianapolis, and bit the bullet. The beer is black and opaque, with a thick dark tan foam. The aroma is perfect in my opinion. Tons of roasted malt, dark fruits (maybe plums or raisins), chocolate, a splash of alcohol. The taste is beyond belief, this is way better than I expected. All the aromas come through richly, this is intensely flavorful. Thick as Dark Lord too, this easily competes with Dark Lord or Batch 7000 for the best RIS I've had. Definitely ahead of Stone RIS or Abyss. as good as those are. Absolutely recommended.

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Photo of gonzo46and2
3.51/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Dark as hell with a dark brown head.

Smell is beefy yeast with soy sauce-like quality to the malts.

Taste is salty sweet like chocolate chip cookies. Hoppy bitterness shines though the darkness to balance it out. The alchohol is heavy and is hidden as well as it could be.

Mouthfeel is very heavy and viscous.

Drinkability is pretty low but is fun for a haymaker.

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Photo of jamie2dope
3.87/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A single bottle of this was bought from Colonial Wine and Spirits in Acton. Poured in to my Portsmouth tulip glass a completely black color, with a tan head that fades very quickly. Smell is of rich cocoa, alcohol, cherry, chocolate cake frosting, overall very nice. More of the same taste wise, with the alcohol and dark fruit coming through in the beginning, bit of a soy sauce taste in the middle, and an unexpected light roasty finish. Mouthfeel is slick and heavy. Hops do not show themselves too much, but can be detected. I drank this bottle over the course of about ninety minutes, and I have to say that it was extremely drinkable. This is simply a beer to sip and savor. I could see myself drinking two in a single night. This is a winner for Avery. A special occasion beer for me that I am sure would be as good, if not better with a few years of age under its belt. Cheers

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Photo of hrking
4.45/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a big beer for sure. This is somewhat as close to Dark Lord as another stout is going to come. That is the only other stout I've had that taste like this. Heavy molasses up front,thick oily mouth feel. This is a drinkable beer that goes down nice.A definite warmth with the high alcohol content but don't shy away this one is an ass kicker and worth seeking out and will not be disappointed. This is a beer to have on a cold winter night or around a Fall campfire and be sure to share with friends..I did!

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

12oz bottle into 8oz snifter. 2006 vintage.

Pitch black, opaque, with a one finger light brown head that slowly settles to a thick rim along the glass.

Deep roasty aromas with a good amount of hops in there as well. Some dark fruit mixed in.

Ultra bitter malts with the hops backing it up. Full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. The finish is the roasty malt with the alcohol lingering for a while.

I'm sure this was a very hoppy RIS when it was fresh. The alcohol stuck around, and is still pretty strong lending a warming feel in the mouth. The malts give a good balance to the hops that lasted. Recommended.

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Photo of joeysmokedporter
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served from a bottle into a goblet.

A: pours inky black, opaque, no highlights, can't shine a light through it. Looks like motor oil as it pours. Lets you know it's a big stout. Very little head, although of a stark dark brown color, that dissipates quickly but no matter.

S: chocolate, cherries, chocolate-covered cherries, alcohol, roast, caramel, molasses

T: immediate impression is strength, has a chocolatey flavor that dominates but some cherry-like fruit flavors also evident. Bourbon-like. Alcohol is there throughout the flavor profile but never burns. The beer finishes in a sweet, cherry-like effervescent close, with a mixed-roast and cherry aftertaste that lingers for awhile.

M: definitely on the heavy side, not as viscous as oil but more viscous for the average beer and definitely what I expected. coats the mouth which accents the aftertaste. Although not an effervescent beer, the finish somehow sparkles.

D: At this abv this is not a highly drinkable beer. that does not mean it isn't enjoyable. It would be a good way to finish the day. I paired with a canoli; the beer complements the cream and cinnamon flavors well.

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Photo of Gehrig
4.92/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

First, and not the last, time I've tried Mephistopheles' Stout, grabbed at the Neil St. Piccadilly. A thin finger of dark tan froth with amazing duration rests atop a deep black body. Black and nothing but black black body. Rich nose! Berry, roasted coffee, chocolate, caramel, molasses--a lush melange. The taste is full and complex. There are hints of sweetness with the berry, molasses and sugar, but they're well complemented by the somewhat bitter, roasted coffee. Splendid mouthfeel, creamy and smooth with ample carbonation, yet a bit thin, not as viscous as I would have hoped. Not paper thin, either. Despite the rush of hot alcohol late in the glass, this is one that doesn't require baby sips with the very high ABV (16.03%), in my estimation. Patience yields delicious complexity from this monstrosity, but isn't mandatory.

One outstanding Imperial Stout, high on my list and well worth the rather expensive price. One of the very best from Avery, no light praise.

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Photo of jdaelhousen
4.07/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours thick, black and sticky. Soft brown head atop a black colored body.

Aroma contains strong scents of semi-sweet dark chocolate and mild grassy notes in the trailing nose.

Taste is extremely sweet and has a surprisingly carbonated mouthfeel right from the start. Sweet chocolate flavors packed with a high ABV punch at the center until the finish. There is a mild hop counter-balance to all the sweetness right before the finish, but the sweet chocolate flavors are overwhelming (yet delicious). Aftertaste lets cocoa flavors linger on the palate, while the throat warms with the high alcohol %.

Overall, an extremely well crafted imperial stout.

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Photo of Buebie
4.9/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

First off, this is the best beer I've had in my life.

Bottle date of November, 2007, batch 3.
Purchased this little beast at Heritage Liquore in St. Paul. Looks like I'll be going back for another bottle....

Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle with red tinfoil over the neck and cap. Into a 12oz merlot glass.
Black syrupy inky liquid poured rigerously, forms a dark fluffy brown head, 2 fingers deep. Thick lace lines the glass, with excellent retention.

The smell is so intense and so diverse at the same time. Many aromas coming off this beer, its a huge aromatic brew. It changes as it warms.
First off I get black licorice, molasses, sweet malt, chocolate, mild coffee, peanut nuttienes.
Folowed by small grassy hop notes, some mild alcahol fumieness.

A swirl of the glass brings back the head. At first the bubbles are a redish black in color. Then settling to a creamy dark brown.

The taste is ohh so complex and wonderful. I have never had a beer like this, so much happening, to few of words to describe it.

I get a sweet molasses, nutty oak like character, that shifts shapes into a hazelnut. Then fades into a smokey tobacco. At the same time through all this there is a taste of amaretto/ Frangelico liquore. Some alcahol warming through the middle, that wisps away and changes shapes into a chocolatly flavor. Finish is dry and still creamy with a tinge of Frangelio sweetness.

Wow....Its so good.

Mouthfeel is thick and creamy with moderate carbonation present. This is really hard to take more then a sip at a time. So much flavor, I must do this beer justice be sipping it oh-so-slowly.
You must try this beer.

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Photo of czfreeman
4.4/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer truly is a complex,crafy, shape-shifting devilish soul-of-Lucifer in a glass.
Pours out black as liquid motor oil smoke in a glass. The head is darker than most "stouts" dare to even go.
Smell is so complex. Coffee, roasted malts, dark raisin fig like, alcohol burn, then when it warms, chocolate-covered burbon-filled cherries!
Flavors are...roasted oaky burbon, espresso,chocolates, Chocolatol(chocolate alcohol) my own word made up while drinking this,(drinking enough 16% beer will do it).
Mouthfeel is thick, yet light with the burning finish, drnkability is sipping at best, but thats what this type of beer is made for, and each aip is delicious. The description of this style of beer is perfectly represented by this black glass of Devil blood. Perfection for what it was made for.

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Photo of chileman13
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nov 2006 2nd batch. poured into a Samuel Smith pint glass.
A- Black 1 1/2 finger toffee head that settled to 1/8" ring.
A- Cocolate and prunes. High alcohol smell.
T- initially high alcohol flavor. After about 10-15 minutes I realized this beer needs to breath. It got better as it got a chance to breath. Has anyone ever thought of decanturing a beer like they do wine? I ask out of my ignorance.
It had coffee and chocolate tones.
D- I was really unsure at first. By the end I felt it is a drinkable beer. The mouthfeel is lighter than I expected. Next time I'm going to let it breath for 15 minutes+ before even tasting.
My eyes are staring to feel like the picture on the bottle.
Not your daddy's Guiness.

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Photo of jasonjlewis
3.81/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice 1 1/2 finger head with good retention with a rich dark brown color.

I smell bittersweet chocolate and a some cofee bean aromas. A good amount of mint comes through as well.

Taste is of bittersweet chocolate with a slight amount of coffee and a good touch of mint. A slight touch of booziness that is pretty nice for a beer with such a high abv.

Smooth and creamy with only slight astringency due to the 16% abv.

I'd like more flavor development and complexity from this beer to keep me a little more interested

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

11/2007 Batch #3

12 ounce poured into a chalice.

A - Pours black, 1/4 inch tannish head that quickly settled to around the edge. A little spotty lacing.

S - alcohol, coffee

T - coffee, chocolate, fruity sweet. Finishes with heat from the alcohol.

M - Thich feel, mild carbonation

D - sipper - one a session, in part due to the abv and the sweetness

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Photo of shbobdb
3.51/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An absurdly large brew that feels much smaller than it is . . .

The beer pours and looks like a fairly standard impy stout. Heck, it even has some pretty good head retention!

The smell is boozy as hell, with a load of prunes.

The taste is layered in many ways. At 16-odd%, this isn't your average beer. It is very drying on the palate, while being excessively sweet. There is plenty of burnt toast, carob, and prune present. Wow, lots of carob and booze. Wow.

I dig the brew, the second best of the Avery super-sized series, but within them the most like "beer", so I'd recommend it to any Impy stout fan.

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Photo of BigSnatch
4.45/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into a snifter (Nov. '07 batch 3).

A - Black as night with a very pleasant brownish head. I noticed after continuing on with this brew, that there was an almost reddish tint to the head (before I moved to a darker room).

Smell - Up front and personal! Roasted malts and some caramel. Some alcoholic scents intermixed, but barely noticeable.

Taste - Fantastic! Roasted malts, coffee, some vanilla right away. Then the alcohol takes over. It starts dancing on your tongue and then works its way down your throat, finally tapering off in the stomach. Great complexity here, but not for the feint of heart!

Mouthfeel - Decent mouthfeel, though creamy and thick, this beer does not have as much thickness as I would have expected.

Drinkability - With an ABV of 16% and strong alcoholic character, I don't see myself wanting more than one or two of these in a night.

Notes: It's a beautifully sunny day out today, and with all the alcohol character in this brew, I probably would not have been as satisfied had my windows stayed open. My tip would be to look at this brew in the proper lighting and then go to a dimly lit, cooler place, so that you can really enjoy the alcoholic character.

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Photo of Donnie2112
3.76/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

batch 3

appearance: HUGE creamy brown head and curtains of sticky lacing. Imperial Stout Black as well

smell: big boozy smell, coffee, black currants a bit metallic from all of the booze

taste: very boozy, a bit of vanilla, some caramel, a bit of anise and a burnt coffee flavor at the finish as the beer has warmed up there is something a bit cinnamon like in the back of my throat, I also seem to notice something slightly more metallic. Definately interesting

mouthfeel: slightly viscous, very warming, rather carbonated

drinkability: I suppose this might be a good cold day beer, it really is very boozy and warms me up a lot. It's just a little much I guess.

In this style I'd go with the World Wide Stout from DFH instead

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Photo of BeerManDan
4.85/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

When poured, this Stout poured thick and had the color of, black ink. The foam was a very dark tan that stayed for awhile. The smell of roasted malts, smoke and coffee filled the nose with a pleasant aroma. The taste was outstanding for a Stout with 16 percent alcohol. At first sip, I couldn't believe that there was so much flavor with the alcohol not being overbearing. The flavor of roasted malts, coffee and chocolate was very pleasing to the palate. There was also a hint of smoke flavor with a hint of a fruity finish. Well balanced, but sort of expensive for such a small bottle.

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Photo of jwc215
3.89/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle, bottled in November 2007, poured into a snifter:

Pours black with a thin, brown head that almost immediately becomes a small patch. Vanishing lace slides down glass at first, then just leaves (don't know the word, but wine leaves it on the glass). Wasn't expecting much of a head retention at this level anyway.

The smell is of roasted molasses, dark fruits (esp. raisins), brown sugar and raw alcohol.

The taste of sweet, peppery alcohol runs the show here. It is accompanied by molasses, raisins beoming prunes as it progresses, brown sugar, chocolate, and toffee/caramel. A sweet one indeed. Is this a sweet liqueur or a beer? A beer - there is an underlying citric/resiny tone, though very subtle. It remains sweet and hot. It finishes sticky and sweet. (Grab the flavors in the first half, as this can take a quick toll on the palate.) Nice maltiness - quite complex.

Medium to full- bodied, with syrupy stickiness and alcohol giving the impression of it being fuller than it is.

The complexities and variations (at times) of the maltiness keep it sippable, though at a slow, slow rate. It gave me the craving for some good chocolate, though it gave me the craving for bed even more. An interesting sipper.

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Photo of EStreet20
3.46/5  rDev -16%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle into a snifter.

A - Pours out as black as night. India ink black color. A fairly large (nearly two finger) head of light brown foam sits atop. An ominous looking brew.

S - Somes at you with a fairly boozy aroma mixed with some dark sweet fruits. Some wine like aromas. Some grape/berries.

T - Has a fruity start. Alcohol kicks up and leads into some smokiness. A lot going on but I think this might need to age a little bit. It has a sweetness that's a bit cloying

M - Heavy, vicious feel on this brew.

D - The drinkability here is damaged by that overly sweet flavor that seems to take over. Some age may tame that.

Notes: Def. a unique "extreme beer". I;ve always been a WWS fan and I think they head in that direction here but the sweetness is over kill ont his brew. Still pretty interesting.

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Photo of cswhitehorse
4.03/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The Mephistopheles pours a black as night color with a solid 2-3 finger foam head that dissipates pretty quickly. Tight bubble patterns near the surface follow it down.

The aroma is figgy and has a molasses smell.

The taste you are hit with what seems to be some oak aging. Deep character with the roasted malts. Hints of coffee and chocolate but the alcohol burns its way to the front. This is definitely not for someone that can't stand the slight burn of the still.

One must sip this man in black, demon lord. I don't get much hop presence, it must be a very small amount in comparison to the other ingredients. In the mouth it leaves the fire of its demonic ways. I found it to be a good effort but I could only afford to drink it once a year with the price point. It is worth a try to kill that curious cat.

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Mephistopheles' Stout from Avery Brewing Company
4.12 out of 5 based on 2,317 ratings.
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