Saint Arnold Divine Reserve #9 | Saint Arnold Brewing Company

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Saint Arnold Divine Reserve #9Saint Arnold Divine Reserve #9
Very Good
192 Ratings
Saint Arnold Divine Reserve #9Saint Arnold Divine Reserve #9

Brewed by:
Saint Arnold Brewing Company
Texas, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Note from the brewery "Important: let this beer warm to at least 50° before enjoying".

Added by armock on 12-01-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 192 |  Reviews: 118
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4/5  rDev +0.5%

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4.25/5  rDev +6.8%

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Photo of raveskdr
4.02/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Into my brand spankin' new Hill Farmstead tulip.

A - Dark black, sans any viscousness. Medium brown head that fades very quickly, most likely due to age. Glad it actually had carbonation.

S - First smell is a nutmeggy, biscuity malt with some faint chocolate as well.

T - Taste follows suit. Starts with some graham cracker biscuit. More chocolate in the taste than in the nose. Real nice. Slight vanilla and cinnamon in there.

M - Nice and velvet mouthfeel, slight alcohol burn on the back end.

O - A real nice beer. A lot in similarity to Pumking, actually. Glad they are remaking this beer, and I'm damn glad that I got to try the original. Shame on me for not remembering who gave me this as an extra.

 710 characters

Photo of bbadger
3.5/5  rDev -12.1%

Photo of CrellMoset
3.64/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Another 12 oz bottle courtesy of a long lost trading partner. This one was poured in to a cervoise.

Appearance: Fairly one-dimensional, raging and surging and seething out of the neck of the stubby bottle in to the glass. Even a vigorous pour yields half a finger of dark tan head that's gone as fast it came, leaving an imperceptible necklace of beige jewels. No lacing of any sort, and nary a hint of visible carbonation makes for a very still, average looking brew.

Aroma: The aroma is likely this beer's best attribute. Graham cracker honey crust notes mingle with the slew of spices - cinnamon mainly, with cardamom and nutmeg also evident, all noticeable as soon as this bottle was cracked - over a see of bittersweet dark cocoa, melon sugar, and dark caramel. Varied and enjoyable.

Taste: Menthol-esque cinnamaldehyde, estery pumpkin sugar notes, and a slew of malts ranging from dark chocolate to brown sugar to toffee make for a mishmash of favors that don't always treat one another well. While the aroma was pleasant if not exciting, the taste is a little abrasive, rough, showcasing alcohol fusel notes, both too strong and too-inauthentic spices, and a malt base that's at times too sweet and at times too dry, crunchy, bitter, odd. All that being said, I certainly appreciate the attempt to balance the favors here, and the idea of a chocolate pumpkin imperial stout is definitely appealing (Midnight Sun has a fantastic one), but this one misses the mark in the mouth.

Mouthfeel: Enough carbonation, probably too much, both because it makes this one a little uneven but also because it augments and amplifies the spice in ways that's slightly abrasive. The beer itself feels slick, oily, a little fat.

Drinkability: Swing and a miss, unfortunately. This one's both too hot, too heavy, too carbonated, and too spiced, and it's a shame because - in the right balance, with the right attenuation - this one really has the makings of something special. It's my understanding that St. Arnold has made this a regular - bring down the alcohol, back off the spice, and dry it out a little, and this becomes a go to for craft beer drinkers.

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Photo of Ryan011235
3.09/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a snifter on 1/26/12

Courtesy of mhewes

Medium brown on the pour, settling a few shades darker. I decided to give it the old swirl and in went some muddy sediment which pretty much darkened the beer even more. The head was shy of one finger; it didn't last long and only a skim remained. No lace.

Aromas of licorice, pumpkin pie spices, burnt molasses, rum-soaked prunes, oatmeal raisin cookies and some oxidation. A persistent floral note couples with the spices creating the suggestion of holiday-time scented candles. It doesn't smell too boozy. As it warms it starts to exhibit more of the sugary. Subtle hints of tobacco juice.

Sipping-wise, oxidation is known immediately, lingers for a spell and hoists itself back up for the finish. At least the other flavors mask most of it (except the finish). Burnt sugars abound - molasses, licorice, prune and a hint of scorched chocolate. It leans a sweeter than I prefer but, though a bit messy in general, it's not over the top. There are some residual spices on the back end, but the pumpkin pie aspect of the aroma is subtle at most.

Medium-full body with a reasonable amount of viscosity. Whereas the alcohol was soft in the aroma, it's bold on the palate, boasting a tingling sensation that is inclined to last long after any other flavor residuals have passed.

I found some interesting things going on here. I appreciate that the "spices and such" are present in the complexity of the nose while being downplayed to taste; it makes for a greater depth of a drinking experience. In any case, as far as sweet imperial stouts go, I'd say it falls somewhere between Kate the Great and Dark Lord in terms of "pulling it off."

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Saint Arnold Divine Reserve #9 from Saint Arnold Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.98 out of 5 with 192 ratings
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