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Imperial Stout | Arcadia Brewing Company

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Imperial StoutImperial Stout
Very Good
470 Ratings
Imperial StoutImperial Stout

Brewed by:
Arcadia Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: American Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our extraordinary Imperial Stout is black as midnight with a rich, palate-warming mouth feel. It offers an alluring aroma of dark roasted malts and blackstrap molasses with a hint of smoke. The flavor features notes of coffee, bittersweet cocoa, black licorice and hints of prune. A generous addition of hops contributes to the complexity and balance, and gives the liquid a pleasantly astringent finish. With proper aging our Imperial Stout matures for up to four years. It is the winner of a prestigious Gold Medal for Bottle Conditioned Ale at the 2002 Real Ale Festival.

OG 1090; 59 IBU

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 470 |  Reviews: 283
Reviews by CFHMagnet:
Photo of CFHMagnet
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2010 Vintage listed on the bottle

I got a thin, mocha colored head. Body a deep brown bordering on black. Funny how imperial stouts can do that.

Smells bold and roasty. Dark fruit sits in there too. A little vanilla and alcohol on the end.

Roasty malt with dark fruit up front. This beer is subdued and smooth. A little vanilla with a coffee finish.

Smooth from start to finish.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of DanGeo
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of TCHopCraver
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Shared with zoso1967 on 1/24/11.

Arcadia's 2007 vintage (as it said on the label) Imperial Stout pours a medium-dark black with a hint of brown. There is no head from my pour into a 23 oz. snifter, just a light brown film. There is almost no lacing- just small, light dots of foam and a clear, boozy film on the sides of the glass.

The first smell is very boozy, with heavy sherry and bourbon qualities. Deeper inspection reveals roasted malt, coffee, and some dark chocolate. This smells like it was oak-aged, but there is no indication of this on the bottle. Usually breweries make sure consumers know if their beer is barrel-aged. Curious. I definitely do smell some woodnotes and vanilla, along with some dark cherry aromas. At times the smell is so boozy that it makes me think of household cleaners.

The taste is very nutty and roasty. Big flavors of bitter coffee emerge with just a touch of chocolate near the end of the sip. The flavor can be quite astringent with hints of sweet booze- bourbon and sherry. The finish is decently bitter with nice drying qualities.

The mouthfeel from this beer is very light for an Imperial Stout, to the extent that it is almost absent of body to match the flavor. This lack of body really brings out the bitter and astringent qualities too much. I am not a fan of this MF.

Overall, this is a weird beer. I like the flavor for the most part, but the smell is so odd and the mouthfeel is just plain weak. I will not buy this again, as I can find many better Imperial Stouts at similar, or even better prices.

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Photo of explosivebeer
4.22/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours very black. Good rich caramel aroma with a hint of alcohol. It really opens up after sitting in a tulip glass for 20 minutes. Chocolate, caramel, toffee, and alcohol come across. The body is good but the alcohol thins it a bit. Overall a very good imperial stout.

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Photo of bsideone
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of lordofthewiens
3.94/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The word on this beer was that it rivaled some of the great imperial stouts. I certainly wouldn't put it in that class, but it was pretty good. In a snifter it was black with virtually no head, just a film. It had a dark chocolate/roasted malt aroma. Taste was semi-sweet chocolate and espresso. Fairly balanced, maybe a bit more on the bitter side. Not too bad.

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Photo of warnerry
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of WuAnquo1
5/5  rDev +31.2%

Photo of Todd
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle. Freshness area on the label, but it's not marked.

Pours a pitch black beer, crowned with a creamy coffee coloured head; good retention. Molasses, ground dark roasted coffee, earth, chocolate and notes of smoke in the nose.

Smooth, creamy, full-bodied with a chewy mouthfeel. Immediate twang of roasted malts, with a bit of astringency and cider notes (just a bit, with apple esters) backed by salty and lime-like hop bitterness. Light herbal notes and some spice. More malt flavours of smoke and char (pretty pronounced actually), burnt raisin, dark-roasted coffee, familiar soy sauce flavours, black-strap molasses, hints of toffee and nuts, and dark unsweetened chocolate. Finish is a bit dry, bitty and bitter with roasted flavours lingering for some time.

This a solid, good Imperial Stout. Very robust and I loved the complex upfront and smoke characters. Tasty stuff.

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Photo of sponberg
4.03/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2006 vintage printed in about 2 point font on a snowdrift on the label. Pours opaque with a solid brown head - looks goood. Aroma of toffee, burnt caramel and toast, a little molasses... wants to be drank, so who am I to argue?

Starts with a dark caramel/toffee middle with a burnt bitterness and overtone - not obtrusive, maybe more of a dark malt thang, faint hints of pininess? A clean mineraliness cuts in about halfway, similar to that in Cadillac Mountain Stout, along with a bit of alcohol coming in. Finishes with a dark caramel and roasted barley flavor along with the mineraliness. Slightly light mouthfeel - chewy, but not big. Could enjoy a few of these.

Not the biggest RIS in the world, but a damned tasty one. Thanks to BA JeffKrenner for the bottle :thumbup:

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Photo of Jpinoniemi
3/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of AlarmClock314
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, no date. Pours mostly black with a medium sized khaki head. Smells of roasted malt, molasses, earthy hops, dark fruit, cocoa, and some char; below average intensity. The taste follows with roasted malt, molasses, cocoa, earthy hops, dark fruit, and char; below average intensity again but only a little alcohol comes though. Moderate bitterness and dryness with subtle sweetness. Average carbonation and body for the style. Overall, the smell/flavor has a somewhat complex and lightly bitter profile, but really needs more intensity. Worth a try, but don't expect a 'big beer.'

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Photo of generallee
4.23/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12oz. long neck bottle into a pint glass. There is no mention of abv. but the label reads that this was a 2008 vintage Imperial Stout.

Appearance: It pours thick and dark. The color is a very dark brown/black with a light brown head on top. Its head is nice tightly packed two finger thick foam that has very good retention and slick lacing.

Smell: The aroma has a full rich nose of sweet and roasted barley with a touch of woody and smokey malt. The hops add an almost citrus like note and there is a noticeable hint of the alcohol.

Taste/Palate: Its flavor is full of dark roasted malty character and complexity. There are flavor notes from sweet molasses and maple sugar to coffee, bitter dark chocolate and woody/smoke/charred malt with bitter herbal and citrus like hops. Mellow nutty/grainy alcohol notes mix in as well and add anther layer of complexity. The palate is firm and smooth with just enough carbonation to give it some life.

Notes: This was a nice solid example of the style, one which I would enjoy anytime I was in the mood for a dark complex stout.

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Photo of Namarsha82
4/5  rDev +5%

Photo of Billolick
4.29/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ouncer, with some sort of info on the label, which I can make no sense of.comes in an expensive ($15) four pack. Pours inky black, very dark fine bubble head, and leaving moderate sticky lace. Rich nose of dark malts and mocha. Full flavor, full enjoyment, RIS, allowed to warm in the glass, tiny bubble film in all its glory, easy drinking, lots of soft, sweet cafe au lait/mocha notes, medium body, complex with some sweetness early, roasty middle then mild drying hops late. Nicely done, stout lovers rejoice, go get some

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Photo of sm0key
4/5  rDev +5%

Photo of jcdiflorio
4.14/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

served into a pint glass from a 12oz. brown long neck bottle with a crimped cap.

Opaque,black poured with a quick mocha head quickly turning into a foam ring with a slight coat of foam. Some tiny bubbles stringing to the surface with some spotty lacing.

Very roasty nose,a bit vinous,clean and pleasing,slight burnt aroma,chocolaty,woody with hints of licorace. A very slight warm alcohol aroma.

Very roasty taste,lots of black coffee,chocolate,sweet carmell maltiness with a good burnt taste.Complex maltiness,well hidden alcohol,just a hint. A great finish that's clean,bittersweet with loads of chocolate notes. A bit faint for an Imperial Stout,but very enjoyable. Lots of tangyness.

Very creamy mouthfeel,again a bit on the light side for an Imperial,but very nice. Juicy is a good description for this beer.
Great drinkability for the style,could drink a few of these no problem. Great tasting beer,a bit mellow compaired to other Imperials i've had,won't hold it against this beer a good solid stout. If you like stouts I would give this beer a try.

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Photo of dogfishandi
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle, 2008 vintage, at cellar temp poured into a pint glass. pours opaque black with a dark mocha colored head. pretty small head off of pretty vigorous pour. head deminished pretty quickly to a thin ring, pretty weak retention. hardly any lacing. lots of sediment visible as well.

aromas of burnt roasted malts, anise, solvent alcohol, coffee, dark chocolate, and a little bit of dark fruits.

the taste is once again heavily roasted malts, dark fruits, anise, dark roasted coffee, finishes with a bitter dark chocolate, solvent alcohol taste. the taste is the best part for me, was kinda debating between a 4 and 4.5, but nothing really stood out too much so i went with the 4.

thick heavy body, minimal carbonation. nice creamy mouthfeel. chewy, meaty. prolly wouldnt want more than one in a day, but i could
definately see myself drinking again. pretty average imp. stout, not bad, not great.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.59/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Really black color, almost 3/4" of brown head on it. Looks professional. Lacing is kind of hodgepodge, a spot here, a spot there, lacks uniformity or coherence. Dark roasted malt aroma, we're two for two in terms of this beer being what it should be with no frills or surprises.

Taste is a little less RIS and a little more double stout, which is a good thing. Less dark fruit, less bitterness, more roastiness, more thickness, more viscosity. Pleasant, not challenging, while being plenty sturdy and demanding respect, you aren't going to pound this one, but its not a super hot sipper either.

Usual notes of coffee and chocolate malt, neither one being massive, throw a little bit of toffee flavors underneath it all. Mouthfeel is chewy without getting too thick and syrup like. Really is like almost every Arcadia brew I've ever had: Better than average, a solid 'good' but doesn't do anything 'great'. More oily than hoppy, more sweet than bitter. Thankfully smoother than most RIS beers. Would drink again.

Thanks to jh1982 for bringing this to a tailgate a year or so ago.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.96/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Another pitch black creation with a massive foamy tan head leaving collared lacing nice and thick. Aroma: Alcohol infused slightly burnt and caramelized tones this is massive with big dark roasts, it brings it to the table with massive brandy like depth. Taste: Strong alcohol notes massive with huge waves of seared fruit and chocolate and coffee crescendoes this beer is crazy big. A ton of malt making this one beer that is just straight up warming and bad ass. Mouthfeel: Chewy oil like thick full bodied smooth carbonation incredible. Drinkabiltiy: Wow, just becareful no idea alcohol content but drinking more than one of these means one of three things trying to be tough, way too high of a tolerance, or stupidity. So, massive this beer is meant to be enjoyed one glass at a time it's that massive folks big brew, but oh so flavorful and big that is has to be enjoyed.

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Photo of acurtis
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of quirkzoo
4.5/5  rDev +18.1%

Photo of NJpadreFan
3.41/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Arcadia- Imp. Stout

A- deep black with a small tan head. Light foamy lacing.
S- Sweet cocoa with caramel malt and burnt ash.
T- Sweet sugary cocoa with a touch of burnt marshmallow vanilla. Slight burnt woodsy hints.
M- Very sweet, sugary, and chocolaty. Smooth vanilla finish. Alc. well hidden.

Overall- Smooth although very sweet. easily drinkable and a good winter beer.

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Photo of MeadGuyfromMD
4.13/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours DARK Brown with slight Orange hue. Thick deep tan head with creamy appearance and some larger bubbles.

S - Coffee, dark chocolate, roasted malt and a hint of alcohol.

T - Coffee, creamy dark chocolate, roasted malt, some mild toasty notes, dark cherries maybe and then the nice hop balance at the end. Label states 90 IBU's but its very well balanced, so much so, that I don't notice 1/2 of them.

M - Thick, full body, light carbonation, glides across the tongue and it finishes a bit dry, but very pleasant.

D - My goodness, this one is tasty. I can easily see myself drinking the entire 4 pack, but at 9.0% ABV, I don't know if that would be prudent. This is an excellent brew, a terrific first impression for me of Arcadia.

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Imperial Stout from Arcadia Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.81 out of 5 with 470 ratings