The Czar | Avery Brewing Company

BA SCORE
88
very good
2,083 Ratings
The CzarThe Czar
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company
Colorado, United States
averybrewing.com

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.10%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Wildman on 01-05-2003

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ratings:
2,083
Reviews:
946
Avg:
3.91
pDev:
11.25%
 
 
Wants:
92
Gots:
357
For Trade:
15
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,083 |  Reviews: 946
Photo of pourmeup
4.6/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottled in 2008

A- standard dark opaque black that is expected from a Russian Imperial Stout, retains slylight less than a quarter inch head of an off-white tone that leaves behind small bits of lacing on the glass.
S- Roasted oats and dark chocolate predominate the nose
T- Dark chocolate predominates the initial taste, light roasted coffee flavors on the after-taste, extremely smooth on the pallet throughout the tasting
M- not as thick as we was hoping for, but still quite nice for a RIS
D- exceptionally drinkable when considering the alcohol percentage; the different flavors do well to mask this and help balance the overall character of the beer

(two person review)

 678 characters

Photo of tigg924
4.2/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

10 ounce sample--2009 edition at Avery tap room

Appearance: dar black in color, 1/4 inch head

Smell: toasted malt and chocolate

Taste: toasted malt, chocolate, alcohol, oak, and some cream at the end

Mouthfeel: heavy, can feel the carbonation, very sweet at the end

Drinkability: This is a very good RIS. It has multiple layers and is a sipper. The aftertaste and last taste are very sweet, but the body of the beer is not. I would say it is actually less sweet than others in the style. I look forward to having this again.

 529 characters

Photo of homebrew311
4.06/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bomber into Delerium Noel snifter.

A: pours mostly black with a hint of brown. Appears to be lighter in color than some other imperial stouts. A nice tan head forms and sticks around

S: I am hit with a nice chocolately sweetness, a great malt profile comes through on the nose. There are dark fruits in there, but mainly chocolate and molasses. Little to no hop presence.

T: The taste is a little unexpected in relation to the nose, that chocolate sweetness is there, but much more robust and it is quickly melds into heat from the alcohol and finishes somewhat dry. I would say the finish is weak compared to the initial flavor and aroma, but still a very enjoyable RIS.

M: I was worried by its appearance that the body wouldn't hold up to these big robust flavors. I was surprised to notice it has a very velvety texture and is very thick.

D: Drinkability is relative with imperial stouts as most beers north of 10% don't exactly qualify as highly drinkable. That being said, this is a very drinkable imperial stout, especially considering its high ABV. These are on sale right now for 5.49 so I'm thinking I need to pick me up a few more. All around a solid beer.

 1,192 characters

Photo of endincolorado
4.2/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance- Fairly thick, black body with good, foamy tan head. Decent head retention. Pretty good lacing.

Smell- Aromatic, bitter hops balance toasted malt, cocoa (vague anise) and toffee.

Taste- burn toasty malt, some cocoa and molasses. Pleasant hops to balance. vague alcohol (well masked)

Meowthfeel- Medium body, great carbonation. creamy and satisfying.

Drinkability- Surprisingly refreshing for an Imperial stout.

 425 characters

Photo of capn
4.77/5  rDev +22%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

For those of you who really enjoy an imperial stout, this is a great one. I recently had the opportunity to try THE CZAR Imperial Stout from the Avery Brewing Company. Right away you can see the pitch-black color which develops into a nice, thick brown head. Even when held up to a light, this brew could not be seen through. It has a very pleasant and complex nose with several different notes, some obvious, others you have to hunt for. I spent several minutes just enjoying the aroma. The central aroma that I detected was what I think is sweet molasses. The first sip did not disappoint, the flavor was complex and pleasant. Be advised, this a strong one, expect to feel a slight euphoria after drinking this one.

I wish you Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.
The Cap'n
uscaptainsblog.blogspot.com

 812 characters

Photo of bonsreeb85
4.65/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Brewed November of '08

A - very, very dark brown, not quite pitch black like other beers of this style. A decent head from my vigorous pour into a snifter stays for a decent amount of time considering the strength of this beer.

S - dark chocolate covered raisins, candied dark fruits, some coffee(slight) carmalized sugar and black licorice. hops have mellowed out over the past year, but can still be sniffed out of the backround.

T - as I stated, the bitterness and alcohol has tamed quite a bit for only 12 months. This could be good or bad depending on one's particular taste preferences. I find the sweeter side of the Czar quite enjoyable. the bitterness still closes the show and keeps the sweetness from getting out of hand. Not before putting on a dazzling display staring sickeningly sweet(this is good) dark fruits, licorice and small hints of espresso and lots of chocolate. I love the flavor, it's a malt lovers dream come true! the alcohol in the finish warms the beer and the belly, but never gets "hot"

MF - well full bodied, the feel is relatively light considering the style, thus giving this high abv. brew a dangerously quaffable quality. I could use a bigger/thicker feel but this is only a minor gripe.

D - this one was way different than expected. i thought i was getting a bitter bomb, but instead I was pleasantly surprised by how rounded out the flavor was. The Czar only gets better with age.

 1,424 characters

Photo of sprucetip
3.71/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

From notes. Black, 1 finger tan head, some retention and lacing. SMELL molasses, licorice. Faint at first, more with a swirl. A bit of chocolate. TASTE is bold and aggressvie. Licorice, molasses, roasted grains, chocolate, coffee, sweet malty and boozy notes contrasted by an assertive bitterness that emerges toward the finish. Fairly complex, very bold, but not especially balanced. FEEL thick, rich, viscous and full bodied. Some alc heat and lingering bitterness in the finish. OVERALL a sipper if ever there was one. Not very smooth. I'm liking it better than I remembered it. I'd be proud to have made it, but I like more others of the style better than this one.

 669 characters

Photo of blaheath
3.2/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottled 2008
Pour is black in color with a light carbonation that leaves a very thin head with almost no lacing. Aromas of licorice, raisins, and roasted malts. Taste is all over the place. Medium bodied, heavy bitter, licorice, raisins, burnt sugar, herbs, roasted malt, charcoal, and an average bitter finish. There was just too much going on here to enjoy. Flavors were muddled and didn't work well together.

 411 characters

Photo of njmoons
3.2/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Even in a big beer I like balance.

I recently tried the Czar and being a fan of both RIS's and some of Avery's beers I was looking forward to it.

The appearance was dark and brown, almost black. It poured a brownish 2 finger head which held up really well. Looked like a solid RIS.

The smell was a sweet fruity malty blast. There was plum and current, and noticeable alcohol with the malt. There was no or very little aroma hops (not unusual in a RIS)

I found the taste disappointing. It seemed all the ingredients for a great RIS were there, but the front end was too sweet, and the sweetness lingered before a very bitter finish. The sweetness and bitterness were extreme and to far removed from each other. The whole taste seemed out of balance front to back.

The beer was thick/syrupy as is normal for an RIS, and unfortunately with the taste out of balance I did not find this very drinkable.

 903 characters

Photo of 100floods
3.95/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Aged a year and a few months from date or purchase, July/August, 2008. Drank this a few times before, first time aging it, so i thought it was worth a write-up.

pours pitch black,tan two finger head, with leaves a thin ring. At first I tasted a lot of dark roasted aromas. Not quite a coffee roasted flavor, but not quite a roasted malt either. After letting it sit for a moment some sweet notes come out, first a little dark fruit, even some vanilla. All of these are very subtle.

The first sip was a harsh one. There's still some hop in it, not a whole lot, but combined with the roasted flavors, for an aged beer the bite is there, but it's not too harsh. There seems to beer to some bitter dark chocolate notes too. Each sip brings out something different than the last, but not too different.

This beer has mellowed out signifigantly. The first time I had this, it was too hard to drink. But all those flavors eased up and make this beer far more drinkable than it's fresher version. Aging it as long as I did isn't the worst I idea. I would be curious was 6 months would do instead of a year. Avery is known for big, intense beers. While aging it makes this beer a little more drinkable, it lost a little of its Avery touch. That is not a complaint. Good end of session beer. Split it with a friend.

 1,309 characters

Photo of thegodfather2701
4.42/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2008 vintage
A-Very dark, but not pitch black like most Russian Imperial Stouts. It has a nice off white head that dissipated rather quickly, but leaves a nice cascading on the glass.

S-Very sweet but not too complex with brown sugar and dark fruits standing out the most. No real coffee aroma and only a slight hint of alcohol.

T-Dark chocolate, fudge, hint of espresso, cream, dark fruits, and brown sugar. Its more complex than the nose. This is my kind of RIS with more chocolate flavors than coffee. Its simply delicious.

M-Smooth and creamy. My complaint is that it is too thin.

D-This beer is very drinkable making it dangerous with such a high abv.

Overall, I had my doubts about this beer, but the flavors melded together to produce one hell of an RIS. It reminds me of a less complex year old Stone IRS and Vortex II but not as sweet. I will definitely purchase this beer again.

 895 characters

Photo of ThreeWiseMen
3.41/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Acquired this in a trade with stephens101. Thanks Lane!

Poured into a snifter.

Appearance: Dark, thick, opaque, black body gives way to a cascading, brown, foamy head. Head eventually settles as a sticky halo, and drags lots of lacing all the way down. Nice.

Smell: Strong dark chocolate, molasses, roasted malt, and - uh-oh - rubbing alcohol. The alcohol becomes even more apparent as it warms. Oh well, it's not terrible.

Taste: Dark chocolate, caramel, roasted malt, and alcohol. The finish is dry and a bit piney, however alcohol is the more dominant flavor. I believe this bottle is about six or seven months old, and I didn't detect a whole lot of hop bitterness. Just as with the smell, I wish the alcohol weren't so prevalent. The taste is more manageable than the smell however.

Mouthfeel: Thick and very creamy with a warm, dry finish. Carbonation provides for velvety smoothness. Sugary and fairly heavy, but not over-malted. Hotter than I'd want for an RIS, but otherwise excellent.

Drinkability: Wish it weren't so hot. Other than that, this one was good - not great, good.

 1,093 characters

Photo of Crosby
4.5/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz. bottle. Very dark with a bit of a red hue. A nice head of foam rises up with a fairly aggressive pour and quickly drops back down leaving a good amount of lace on the glass. The smell is very pleasent with chacolate, prunes, and a heavy alcohol. there is also a good amount of alcohol in the taste and gets more pronounced as it warms. Dark chacolte is the most pronounced taste but there is a little bit of pepper that lingers. The mouthfeel is slightly thick although not as thick as some other stouts I have had. Overall this is a very well put together beer.

 582 characters

Photo of jdskinns
3.87/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber. Color was slightly darker than cola with deep reddish brown showing when put up to the light. Smell was all sweet chocolate, very pleasant. Taste was good with a lot of chocolate. This was a rather sweet impy, but pretty good overall. Not as heavy as some other stouts as far as mouthfeel, with a little bit of an alcohol burn as it warms.

 366 characters

Photo of far333
4.15/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark brown, nearly black with ruddy orange highlights. Frothy light brown head rises up and quickly settles out leaving a rim of lace around the sides of the glass.

Aroma of roasted malt, marshmallow and bristling hops.

Rich dark malts upfront, very flavorful, hints of dark chocolate, espresso, root beer, licorice. Some molasses and marshmallow, faint hints of tangy fruit. Nice balance of hop flavors and bitterness balances out the rich maltiness. Scary smooth for such a strong beer. Surprisingly hoppy for the style, but it works nicely.

Even mouthfeel, fairly full, tingly on the tongue, finishes dry, a bit tannic. Tasty sipper.

 639 characters

Photo of Magpie14
3.92/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: has dark complexions, as figured. The base of the glass holds deep red ruby colors. Nothing to out of the ordinary, I always anticipate a thick viscous pour. The lacing is sub-par as well as the meager almond creme colored head

S: here we have heavy roasted malts, burnt raisins, ripe figs, and sweet sugary notes

T: the flavors hold closely to the nose with the addition of dark molasses and unsweetened chocolates. Everything, for what is in the glass, is in control. However, one could say that it always comes back to gobs of chunky roasted (almost smokey) flavors. Alcohol is warming as the drink does with a slight spice to it

M: this brew maintains a certain smooth character and yet it is rather light for an RIS. A little more bottom end would not hurt this boy. In any event, this thing gulps, sips, chugs easy. A soft tanginess is prevalent after the sip

D: not a bad RIS the flavors are deep and rich. It is pretty good. However, I would not stop the quest for finding the most elusive RIS

 1,009 characters

Photo of farrago
3.94/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Loosely knit one finger head of light brown color, the bubbles pop with ease, any lacing lacks stickiness, swift dissolve. Jet black color, fully opaque, merest suggestion of orange at the rims. Heavy duty dark chocolate, mocha and coffee roast in the nose, malts out the wazoo, plum, black raisin, cherry and blackberry scents add to the sweet profile, there's a minute portion of graininess but nothing bitter. Full-bodied, however, the carbonation adds a violent swirl which breaks up most of the overall solidity. Minty and floral at first, actually beats the cocoa powder, ground coffee and caramel to the punch. Elevated grains, straw and bread crust elements, adds a drying touch. There's concentration but not much sweetness found in the plum, prune, raisin, cherry, apricot fruit. There is a slight astringent booziness in the texture. Maltiness lingers more than the other parts which does smooth out and extend the finish. You can be true to the beer type and offer a more nimble, nuanced product.

 1,008 characters

Photo of kegger22
3.83/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a dark brown with a respectable head, not quite two fingered, that had good retention. The aroma had something strange in it, in the taste too, but can't quite put my finger on it, I'm going to call it soapy for now. Maybe it will hit me as it warms. The taste was sweet, some chocolate, some licorice, some molasses. Feel was full bodied. oily and I got some decent carbonation if you look for it, but generally smooth. Drinkability? One bomber was plenty. Still can't find the mystery smell and flavor. Must be Russian potato borsht vodka yeast or something equally baffling.

 584 characters

Photo of cbutova
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours the pitch black expected from an imperial stout with a one-two finger head, nice carb in this beer, head fizzes out in a few minutes and was pretty thick. Good coating of lace left down the side of my glass. Smells of molasses, chocolate, alcohol, sweets and roasted malts. Tastes again of molasses, roasted malts, lots of sweetness (molasses again), some chocolate and a little bit of coffee. Alcohol and molasses take over after a while reminding me of a belgian beer. Mouthfeel is nice and thick and creamy, molasses coats the mouth for a long time after the beer is done. Alcohol warms in here also. Drinkability is decent, good taste but the molasses and alcohol might get old after a while, seems like the beer is best for the first half of it.

 756 characters

Photo of ohmybock
3.21/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

2008 bomber pours with a fluffy head. When held up to the light, the color isn't quite as dark as you normally find in an impy stout. The aroma is dominated by fruitiness with very little dark malt character. The aroma reminds me of a combination of Granny Smith apples and ripe pears. It's a pleasant aroma, but not at all what I expect in an IS. The taste has a malty/fruity sweetness upfront followed by a lingering (but light) roastiness in the finish. It seems to be a bit boozy, and the mouthfeel is a bit thin for an IS. Sadly, it's really lacking in the dark, roasty, malt character one expects in a stout or impy stout. I find this brew to be quite drinkable, but it doesn't remind me of an IS at all. Instead, it's more like some sort of dark, somewhat sweet, fruity, strong ale. I'm rating this brew as an imperial stout, and thus my ratings aren't that great. However, "as a strong ale", I would have rated this higher...such is one of the problems when rating beers. Do you rate to style or just overall pleasure? If I order apple pie, but get blueberry instead, am I disappointed? They're both types of fruit pies (and I might like both flavors), but I asked for apple, I was in the mood for apple, and they said it was apple. Such is the case with this brew...I thought I was going to get one type of beer, but I got something a bit different.

 1,358 characters

Photo of Buschyfor3
4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

2006 vintage bottle. A steal of a find at $7.99 for a 11.04% ABV Russian Imperial Stout with 3 years of age on the bottle. Served in my Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass. Served slightly chilled but I know it will take me some time to work through this bomber so it should warm to room temp nicely.

A: A sluggish, viscous pour produces a rich, deep mahogany brown with some lighter cola highlights around the edges of the glass, but by no means is this beer translucent - definitely opaque through and through. Not the darkest looking RIS I've come across though. Good head on the pour, a creamy, dark khaki/beige top easily a couple finger thick. The initial head dissipates to a sheet of lacing and bubbles that arise near the edges of the glass. Coats the side of the glass with an oily film on each sip... nice.

S: Alot of dark fruits on the nose, with raisins being the most prominent note, and possibly some hints of dried cherries. There is also a licorice note in there as well. Somewhat sugary sweet on the nose - brown sugar and molasses for sure. Not really getting any kind of hop bitterness, and I wouldn't expect any with 3 years of age on the bottle. A slightly salty, soy sauce note sneaks in late, blending in with some of the bready, malt aromas. Not really getting much any booze on the nose, which I hear can be quite prominent on fresh bottles.

T: There is alot going on under the surface here. First sip delivers fruity, raisin-like flavors, followed by dashes of brown sugar and molasses. A bit of dark cocoa gets added to the mix, as well as some black licorice. The initial sweetness is surpassed by the malt background which delivers strong bready flavors along with glimpses of roasted malts and a nutty/buttery note akin to the aftertaste you get from swallowing a spoonful of peanut butter... can't really say I've ever had another beer produce that taste phenomenon but I really like it. A touch of alcohol kicks in near the finish, offering some warming spiciness but it never dominates the flavors on offer. Aftertaste brings out some stale bread flavors and a lingering hint of cocoa and raisins. Flavor profile is quite smooth and layers blend together quite well, probably enhanced by the age on the bottle.

M: Frothy, creamy smooth thanks to some superfine carbonation. Syrupy on the tongue and it coats the mouth. To be honest, I'm pretty impressed with the mouthfeel on this beer... it surprised me. This really feels like velvet on the tongue. I think I have to give this a 5 because this just feels exactly how I imagine a big, imperial stout should feel.

D: 11.04% ABV listed on the label, and while you can feel the booze creeping up as the bottle warms, the alcohol seems kept in check in both the aroma and the flavor profile. I think the aging probably smoothed out the sharp, boozy edges that other reviewers noted from fresh bottles, but the alcohol is still there and you still feel it warming your insides as you go along. One bomber is definitely enough to get you going for a night or to prolong your buzz. This beer is a sipper... and while it is probably one of the easiest-drinking sippers I've had, one bottle is enough to keep my buzz going for the night. A second bomber would be overkill, if not because of the richness of the flavors found in The Czar, it's because the alcohol is so stealthy, even with age. If anything, the fact that the alcohol is felt but not tasted is a testament to how well crafted this beer really is and how it has held up over 3 years.

This is the first Avery offering I've ever tried. I spied a '06 vintage bottle at my local bottle shop, and knowing that they are pretty considerate when it comes to storing bottles properly, I thought "What have I got to lose? A killer price for a 22oz bottle that has been aged 3 years for me.... I'll give it a shot!" I'm really glad I picked up The Czar. Smooth and delivering a nice blend of flavors backed by a delicate and devilishly smooth mouthfeel. Really enjoyed this one. Not sure how a fresh bottle would compare, but with age, this is quite a nice RIS to enjoy. With age, could this compete with some of the best of the best RIS? Perhaps. I think this bottle proves that The Czar is mighty fine with some age on its side. In the overall picture, however, The Czar probably falls just shy of RIS greatness - there are other examples that are better in each of the rating categories. Still, don't let that convince you to pass over this stout... it is worthy of a spin for anyone looking for a solid, enjoyable RIS.

 4,550 characters

Photo of damienblack
4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a kind of thin looking deep black, decent looking head, not much retention. Some cool lacing, though, actually looks pretty cool whenst agitated. Smell is the low point here. A bit of booze and muted hop and dark malt, smells kind of harsh. But it tastes a lot better than it smells. A good amount of booziness, and pretty hoppy, which usually I am not a fan of. But they walk the line just perfectly between pleasure and undrinkability. Especially as it warms, it becomes an excellent sipper. I couldn't even finish a bottle, partially because it was late, but it was also getting to me a lot faster than I would have thought. Decent mouthfeel, not the most drinkable RIS, but still pleasurable. It's not in the upper eschelon of imperial stouts, but still a very worthy second-teamer.

 792 characters

Photo of kzoobrew
3.63/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes. Enjoyed on 02/19/2009. Bottled 2007

Very dark but not opaque. Crimson highlights. Slightly creamy off white head with decent retention and lacing.

dark roasted malt . Very sweet smelling. Alcohol is very evident in the nose.

Rich cocoa flavors complimented with more subtle toffee taste. Big roasted malitiness. Slightly hot.

Full mouthfeel but less dense than other imperial stouts. Carbonation low but appropriate. Oily finish.

Definitely a sipper but easier to drink than imagined. Very enjoyable.

 526 characters

Photo of Richardberg
3.18/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

A: poured from a bomber into a pint glass. Very dark but not completely so. Moderate head surprisingly foamy and white for a big beer.

S: lots of dark currants, berries. Malt syrup. Banana ester. Nothing on the coffee/cocoa spectrum, nor hops.

T: pretty much same as smell. Dead center in terms of sweet/bitter. Alcohol very present - if there's anything else, it's hidden by ABV.

M: smooth, coating, with a nice touch of carbonation too. Not exceptional though.

D: pretty low. Have to wade thru a lot of alky, for not much reward. Interesting fruit smells and well executed feel, but nothing others don't do better.

 624 characters

Photo of jdklks
3.15/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer is not as "big" or as bursting with flavor as the label would suggest. It pours black (like any RIS), but when held up to light is curiously transparent. it is accompanied by a foamy head that is off-white. The color of the head doesn't excite me (a brown head I find usually suggests more coffee and chocolate; this, however, is white). The beer looks overly carbonated, which I think is due to its relative lightness (for an RIS), but it is not when tasted. The smell is weak for an RIS, and nothing really stands out; rather, it is a mixture of certain [predictable] characteristics that, having come together, are hard to place exactly as they are. In other words, this beer doesn't emphasize anything, which makes it a little dull.

The taste is similar to the smell- no clear emphasis, no outstanding flavors, and thus little complexity. The usuals are present in short supply- chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, dark fruits (plum, and maybe cherry), etc., etc. there is present an almost fruit candy sweetness, that doesn't blend well with the other flavors. As previously mentioned, the beer is lighter than expected or desired. It is not great, and I dont see myself buying it again.

edit: i didn't look at this review and ended up buying it again. score has been adjusted (lowered) accordingly. not very enticing.

 1,333 characters

The Czar from Avery Brewing Company
3.91 out of 5 based on 2,083 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.