Imperial Stout Trooper | New England Brewing Co.

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Imperial Stout TrooperImperial Stout Trooper

Brewed by:
New England Brewing Co.
Connecticut, United States | website

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
2006 - 12oz bottle
2007 - not released
2008 - 12oz bottle
2009 - 750mL bottle
2010 - 750mL bottle and Groucho glasses label change
2011 - bottle date added to label
2012 - 500mL bottle
2013 - 500mL bottle labeled 12/2013
2014 - 500mL bottle
2015 - 12oz can

Added by goodbyeohio on 12-29-2006

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Reviews: 488 | Ratings: 1,243
Photo of jzeilinger
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

In review is a 2012 vintage.

A - Pitch black pour with a thick toffee colored head.

S - Dark chocolate, cream, and licorice aroma. Mild astringency.

T - Based on the age - Molasses, licorice/anise, dark chocolate, cream. Nice lingering dark chocolate bitterness with a little bit of sugar molasses on the finish.

M - Full medium body, slippery, sticky on the lips.

O - Good, but I let this bottle sit too long.

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Photo of Urbancaver
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark brown wih a decent amount of brown head. Te head sticks around for quite a while. Smells roasted and chocolatey. Tastes dry and not very sweet. A bit of chocolate And some nice bitterness but it's so dry. Mouthfeel suffers because of this. Fairly drinkable but overall not really that good. No better than stone IRS or old Rasputin for sure which are much easier to acquire.

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Photo of rtaps
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours pitch black, like molasses. with a half finger dark tan head with decent retention that fades to a light film leaving hardly any lacing

rich chocolate with roasted malts, the chocolate if very dominate on the nose like a brownie.

not much up front but you get a very rich chocolate brownie thats fades into the roasted malts and that stays with you.

medium bodied and carbonated, very viscous. wet mouth feel left behind. it kinda had a maple syrup like character to it.

overall the flavors weren't as big as i expected and hoped for, but its still a very nice stout and enjoyable. seems like one you could drink over and over again

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Photo of mikereaser
3.82/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed on 12/29/09 from a 12 oz. bottle

A - pours a pitch black with a 1/4 inch of tan foam that quickly dissipated.

S - roasted malts, vanilla, some oak

T - chocolate, a bit of roasted bitterness, coffee and some vanilla

M - very oily feel, smooth and creamy

D - very tasty and enjoyable, wish I knew what it tasted like fresh to compare

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Photo of Jeffo
3.81/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Had trades fall through for this one on several occasions, and it became especially difficult after the whole George Lucas thing happened. Finally got hooked up with this one in a big trade with NYCWheatFanSC. Thanks a lot man!

From a 750 into a snifter
Vintage: 2009

APPEARANCE: Pours out relatively thick and makes a 2+ finger, tight, thicker looking mocha colored head that cascades upwards nicely after the pour. Great retention as well. Jet black body and zero carbonation evident. Head slowly recedes to a good wisp, clinging to the sides on the way down. Wisp remains until the end, rejuvenating after each sip, and leaves some nice lacing down the glass. A slightly thicker pour would give this a perfect score. Really good looking.

SMELL: Roasted malts and dark baker's chocolate mostly. Hints of molasses, but very chocolate dominated. Decently bold as well.

TASTE: Roasted malts, dark baker's chocolate again with some sweet caramel malt and bigger coffee and chocolate at the finish. Not as chocolaty as the nose had suggested, but more complex. Bitter-sweet caramel and roasted aftertaste is mild yet lingers nicely. Good flavors, but still not as big as others in the style.

PALATE: Full body and creamy on the palate, with medium, soft carbonation. Goes down smooth but finishes slightly astringent. Great feel in the mouth, but a little too astringent after the swallow. Score balances out here.

OVERALL: A high quality, medium strength imperial stout. It's not quite as big as others in the style obviously, but it's certainly tasty and is definitely a beauty pageant contestant. The finish, however, was unfortunately a little too astringent. Fix that up a little and you'd have a fantastic mouth-feel as well. Despite the slight flaw, this was an easy imperial stout to drink down and I would love the chance to have it again. Thanks again for the trade NYC!

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Photo of number1bum
3.8/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours nearly pitch black with a slowly building two inch dark tan head. At first I thought it was going to keep quite well, but the head settled down to just a thin lace. It does coat the sides pretty well and falls slowly after each sip.

Smell has a fresh hoppiness to it, earthy and citrusy, with some depth of malt aromas as well. Malt is roasty without being burned, with some dark caramel and a touch of coffee. Has a hint of smoke as well.

Taste leans very much to the darker and roasted malt flavors with less sweetness than expected. It's still not burned, but it's quite roasty and has a pronounced smokiness going on as well, particularly into the finish. There is an espresso like flavor and some hop bitterness, plus that smoke, left lingering on the palate. There is some very dark chocolate, bitter more than sweet, and a touch of caramel but the sweetness is modest and is overcome by the smoke and bitterness in the finish The hop aromas really don't translate to the taste either; none of that citrus that was there.

Mouthfeel is medium-full and pretty smooth, and also quite dry for a stout. That's owing to the bitterness in the finish of this beer. Carbonation is appropriate.

This is a tasty and very good imperial stout, but I'm surprised at the 4.3 average across so many reviews. That type of rating implies greatness, and while this is very good I don't think it comes terribly close to being great at all. It's different, not boozy and not sweet, and those darker, more bitter and smoky flavors are a nice change of pace. They also wear on the palate though, and this is not super drinkable, even by imperial stout standards. A good beer, but it doesn't quite sing to me.

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Photo of Chriscrundwell12
3.8/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a Darkness snifter.

A- Pitch black, excellent carbonation, mocha brown head
S- Subtle aroma, very hidden, not what I was expecting, hints of coffee, slight hints of hops, roasty.
T- Bittersweet chocolate upfront, very mellow coffee taste, can taste slight hops, slight maltness to it.
M- Medium mouth feel, nice carbonation, bitter after taste, very smooth,
O- Solid Stout, was let down with the overall taste of the beer. Very mellow and subtle tastes that came out, alcohol was very hidden, easy drinkability, solid but not great.

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Photo of BZero007
3.79/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had the pleasure of this brew at a local tasting in the DC Metro area. Bottle was of the most recent release.

This brew poured a very oil black color in the glass with no light puring threw. Was a great start off, though the head came up a bit thin with a slight chocolate hue to it. The aroma was a sweet roasty smell that came threw with minimal power. The taste was a slightly roasted profile with a strong sweetness to it in the background. For my tastes this brew was not very balanced and even powerfull flavors were not up to par. I enjoyed this brew and would have it again, though would not seek it out. Would love to see what this brew could do with a year or two on it.

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Photo of Phelps
3.76/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received from xanok in an in-person trade. I believe this is the 2010 edition, poured into a snifter.

Molten dark chocolate with mahogany highlights. A creamy one-finger head remains for a long while. Tons of webbed lace grips the glass as I drink.

The nose: alcohol and powdered cocoa, acrid toast, some dark coffee as well. Pretty dull.

The flavor: burnt toast, powdered cocoa and smoky pork. It isn’t very complex, but it’s an incredibly smooth delivery.

Thick, creamy medium body, though the carbonation is so low it feels nearly flat. Booze is unnoticeable. Heavy but drinkable.

I’m impressed, but I’m not wowed. Imperial Stout Trooper has a smooth, well integrated flavor and is drinkable, though not as incredible as some would say.

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Photo of augustgarage
3.73/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to ShogoKawada (as always!). 2010 vintage - thought I'd try this before popping open my older vintage. Poured from a 750mL bottle into my Portsmouth tulip.

Opaque seal brown liquid with a finger of soft whipped desert sand foam up top. Light lacing runs quickly, driven down by pools of tears.

Subdued aromatics include deep roast barley notes with hints of hickory, vanilla, and chocolate orange.

Orange zest, cocoa, faintly acrid malt, stale coffee, and a touch of anise on the palate. Finishes dry, vaguely peppery, with a gentle astringency and hints of hot-dog buns.

Somewhat oily, medium-bodied, with low but sufficient carbonation.

A decent, well balanced, but rather one-note (and somewhat weak flavored) stout - we'll see if age helps my earlier batch.

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Photo of breadwinner
3.73/5  rDev -11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

This'll put hair on your chest, oodles of roasted, or perhaps charred, malts dominating. Think of some brutally bitter, black coffee and you've kind of got this. Tasty in some ways, but an exercise in endurance.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.73/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a deep black color stout with a nice thick brown foamy head with good retention and some good lacing. Aroma of light roasted malt with light coffee notes and light black chocolate. Taste is an underwhelming taste of light roasted notes with light black chocolate and light dry coffee. Body is quite full though average for style with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Good but I guess I might have caught in hype and was expecting a lot more complexity from this one.

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Photo of claspada
3.73/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Growler courtesy of montrose79 at my recent tasting.

Pours a fairly thick, viscous black body with dark brown head, that foams up to a large bubbly head.

Aromas begin quite full and rich, initially sweet smell coming off of it, almost akin to a milk stout but much stronger and with a much greater depth to it. Rich chocolate notes were rotating in and out and mingling with roasted coffee and vanilla, really becoming quite full. Some light soy sauce emerges more as it warms. No hint of alcohol in the aroma what so ever. There was a touch of a grainy and earthy like back that could be found hiding deep underneath a well and slight hints of dark caramel.

The tastes begin very, very roasty. Lots of coffee, and some more roasted malts for good measure, bordering charred maltiness. A good earthiness and bitterness and just a hint of chocolate and vanilla. The intense char interacts with that same soy sauce element I was getting in the nose. Not offensive as it sounds but a big flavored beer for sure.

The mouthfeel is medium to heavy with a medium amount of carbonation, thank goodness, otherwise this would be like sludge on your palate. The finish is dry and roasty and bitter from all the dark malt additions here.

Overall, I am kinda over big boy stouts like this one, and I thought I was going to hate this but I actually enjoyed my small pour decently. 4 oz is all I really needed as this beer is packed with massive roast, char and dark chocolate flavors. Not for the faint of heart and worth a go if you like extremely dark roasty stouts.

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Photo of tripelhops
3.73/5  rDev -11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this last weekend with BigDub, got it at an in-person trade at Dark Lord day, partly because I wanted the bottle as I'm a little bit of a Star Wars geek, but certainly hoped it was worth the Dark Lord I traded for it. I think overall it was good, but not had too much chocolate/coffee flavors in it for my liking. The color was deep black and it was pretty thick. I prefer my Russian Imperials with a bit more hop bite. Overall this is a solid imperial stout, but in my opinion a little overpriced/hyped for what you get.

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Photo of CuriousMonk
3.7/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is a special-release stout (acquired through trade) that is blended of seven different malts and Northern Brewer hops. Pours black with a two-finger tan head that dissipates quick. Faint aromatics of coffee and cocoa nibs and probably were all I could detect. Taste was flattish and made me wonder if this is better fresh? I could pick up light notes of coffee, toffee, and maybe roasted chocolate. Full bodied with decent carbonation. Highly disappointed brew. The label was probably the best thing going for this beer.

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Photo of BarrytheBear
3.7/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

08' courtesy of BT Pete, I believe

12 oz bottle into my snifter

pretty black pour with a creamy cinnamon head that fluffs then darts to the edges of the glass and leaves a swirling galaxy floating along the surface

nose of cooking sherry, almonds, sweet malts, iced coffee, and dark chocolate

first sip reveals an unexpected sourness, along with almond bark; not as complex as the nose would suggest. Aftertaste lingers forever

prickly carbonation that jumps on the palate - slightly odd but not altogether unpleasant

sourness and biting carbonation hamper the drinkability. Having never had this beer, I'm not fully sure if this is how it should taste.

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Photo of drseamus
3.7/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Dark body with thin off white head. Good rich sweet chocolate aroma. A ton of aroma for a beer. Starting to thin a bit in the flavor but still good chocolate. Some sweetness and leaves a nice malty aftertaste. Light body for a stout but medium at a minimum. Can't wait for this to release again.

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Photo of DarkerTheBetter
3.69/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I'll confess, I'm a Star Wars nerd. I was born in late '77 so I've been surrounded by the genera, literally, for all of my life so I was a little stoked to try this one. Lets see if it lives up to expectations.

Great packaging! Makes me wish I could open it with the hilt of my lightsaber. The beer itself is a deep murky black with hits of plumb. The head is a lovely frothy brown that pours big but collapses to a crescent of film. Very nice.

Smells of slightly toasted wheat bread crusts, over ripe prunes and a dusting of coffee.

Tastes far more toasty with a dry rasp of the same bread crust that fades nicely to coffee. This picks up some soft cream and dark cherry, but the dark bread crust seems to dominate. I'm not sure I care for this emphasis.

Feels big and present with a thick swarm of bubbles that give this on a texture like pudding. Sadly, this seems to trap in the burnt crust flavor all the more.

When I look at the spectrum of RISs I've tried, this one just doesn't stick out for me. I'm sure some will be nuts about it, but the toast emphasis just didn't do it for me. I should note that this is extremely well put together, so my hat's off to the brewer, as I said, this one just isn't for me.

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Photo of srandycarter
3.69/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours very black with dark brown tan 1 inch head. Leaves slow.

S - At first, a little turned off. Ashtray comes to mind. After mellowing, bakers chocolate is the predominant smell.

T - Bitter charred malty flavor. Almost smoky, but thankfully, not too much. Coffee and chocolate in the mix.

M - Creamy, coating, decent carb.

D - Too heavy handed on the flavor and I don't really care for the smoky charred aspect. Nice, but one is enough.

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Photo of trappistlover
3.68/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(22oz bottle via trade). Pours black with 2 finger chocolate head. Aroma has roasted malts, dark chocolate, wood. Taste is bitter with flavors following aromas. Full bodied with sticky texture. Bitter finish. Could be a little sweeter for my tastes. Quite bitter.

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Photo of ktrillionaire
3.68/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Mcdiddypop for sharing this now-discontinued Jedi brew at the Hunahpu release party.

A – It pours fairly average for the style; black with a tan head, some lace.

S – The smell is mostly of heavily roasted grain and burnt toast, not spectacular. Underwhelming, actually.

T – The taste is underwhelming as well; it is not bad in any respect, but it is not outstanding in anyway (excepting the name and graphics). The flavor is basically roast, toast and grain, with only moderate to vague nuances of the usual accompanying flavor elements such as coffee, charred wood and cocoa. It didn’t help that this was being consumed in the presence of such outstanding Cigar City Stouts as Bourbon- or Brandy- barrel aged Hunahpu or Zhukov as well as standard Hunahpu, 110K+OT, and other phenoms such as Haandbryggeriet’s Odin’s Tipple. It couldn’t hang with the big boys. But it did crush Blackbeerd, by a mile, head-to-head.

M – Thick, but not crude thick, and just pretty good.

D – I wouldn’t seek to drink another one of these, though I would like to have one just to keep it for the Star Wars factor.

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Photo of PeprSprYoFace
3.67/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Reviewed from my noted from last night. Shared a bottle with my friends.

Pours a Dark black. A little thinner looking than expected. No real head. No lacing

Aroma of roasted malts primarily. Little bit of coffee. Mostly roasted malts.

Tastes pretty much the same. Slight malty sweetness. Little bit of coffee. Not really alot going on in this beer.

Mouthfeel is alot thinner than I like on an imperial stout. I think that's an important part of the balance.

Overall I really don't know why this is in the top 100. I've had other stouts that deserve the spot more. This was good but not worth the hype. Oh well, glad I finally tried it.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.67/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a deep black with little caronation and small brown head. Nose was faint with some roasted malt, coffee and cocoa coming through but not very robust at all. Taste had a funky sourness to it, notoverpowering but I did notice it but diminshed as it got warmer. Cocoa, roasted malt, some dark fruits as well. A big sweetness, bog on mouthfeel and a hardy beer. Got totry it thanks to Far333.

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Photo of Homebrew35
3.66/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

2011 vintage 750ml
Pours a hint mocha head that is easily roused to a half fingers worth. Alcohol legs are present with some wisps of head and some lacing. Black body with deep brown/red around the edges.

Roasted malts, coco powder and some earthy hops. I can also smell some burnt sugar, sweet sugary malts and alcohol.

Tastes like a solid Russian Imp Stout with some ashy, smokey and roast quality. A good bit of coco, dark chocolate, raisins and earthy hops. A bit of alcohol in the taste with a definite warmth as it goes down.

Medium full bodied. Low carbonation. Fairly oily and coating.

Overall this is an good beer. The steep price tag of this one may keep me from trying it again. I can't see myself spending $20 for another bottle for this coming release. I know it's cheaper at other stores but I have buyers remorse for this one. Maybe if I see it on draft coming up I'll get a taste to see if it's worth it.

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Photo of cpetrone84
3.66/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-pours a completely opaque black liquid that won't let even a hint of light through. The head is dark brown colored, almost like a dark mocha latte, the head is pretty tight and thick. it doesn't linger for very long but does leave a thick blanket on the glass.

S-the nose is actually not that big imo. it is very roasty, lots of roasted coffee, a touch of smokey wood, nice chocolate malts, and notes of alcohol at the back.

T-the taste is decent, lots of roasted coffee, slightly burnt with hints of the smoked wood. Dark chocolate comes for the middle giving way to a light sweetness that wasn't present in the nose. Dark fruits finish with ripe plum and a little alcohol soaked raisin. There is also a little bitterness at the very end suggesting some hop presence.

M-this is extremely smooth and creamy, almost velvety. However, the body is a little thin. I'd say about a medium body at best. Well carbonated giving it a nice finish but no burn at all.

D-this is some easy drinking. It is a little thinner than I prefer and pretty straight forward in terms of taste. doesn't really bring the complexity or body of the top stouts; but it isn't bad.

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Imperial Stout Trooper from New England Brewing Co.
4.19 out of 5 based on 1,243 ratings.
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