Salted Caramel Imperial Stout
Southern Tier Brewing Company

Salted Caramel Imperial StoutSalted Caramel Imperial Stout
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Stout - Sweet / Milk
Ranked #102
Ranked #2,980
4.16 | pDev: 10.58%
Southern Tier Brewing Company
New York, United States
Salted Caramel Imperial StoutSalted Caramel Imperial Stout
Notes: We brewed Salted Caramel to pay tribute to one of our favorite sweets. In the same vein as salted caramel chocolates and truffles, our Salted Caramel stout is the perfect balance of sweet decadence and savory salt. Perfect alone, or enjoyed as a float.

Southern Tier Salted Caramel takes a base imperial milk stout (brewed with lactose), Himalayan pink sea salt, and caramelized sugar, to mimic the flavor of the candy. Much like other beers in the Blackwater Series, this dessert beer finishes at 10% alcohol by volume.
Reviews: 87 | Ratings: 344 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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JohnniEMc from Pennsylvania

4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

When it's time for desert, Southern Tier is a go to. A clear Imperial pint glass has been filled by one and a half brown 12 oz. bottles of this. It pours with a color like a cola, a deep dark caramel. Not particularly generous with head nor lacing, it really won't matter to the overall. A sweet caramel candy aroma is intensely filling the area. The taste can't be far from that. It's not, although it's not as sweet as the nose predicted. Salt is there and it helps tone down some of the sweetness. There's a pronounced vanilla characteristic to the caramel flavor. The malt base is ample enough to carry the flavors and a hop finish at the end. That hop inclusion at the finish defines that an ale is being consumed, not a soda pop with alcohol in it. Once again, Southern Tier has nailed a desert stout.
P.S. The ABV of this offering was 8.6%, so we're not all reviewing the same beverage, although the label is the same. Recipes change and it would be a positive for Beer Advocate to take notice of that.

Mar 06, 2021
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skisonic from Maryland

3.68/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Looks a light brown, like a soda from the fountain. Light head. Smells of vanilla! Heavy. With a sweet, almost nutty undertone. Bitter as hell, quite a strong vanilla flavor with carried on a robust juicy body. Light, easy to sip for such heavy flavors.

Jan 30, 2021
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Nuttin_but_the_best_Clark from Massachusetts

1.69/5  rDev -59.4%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.75

This beer is absolutely terrible!!! First off, this is a new release of this and is a Porter, not a Stout. The positive reviews are likely from folks who had the stout ... which is no longer available. So how is the Porter? Awful!

It tastes similar to a more medicinal version of that drink which was popular for a minute around 2017 called Not Your Father's Rootbeer which was an alcoholic root beer which tasted more like cream soda mixed with shampoo and suntan lotion. This beer is vile and just about every aspect of it is unpleasant.

I get barely any salt or carmel. There is an astringent note of Bactine and the faint note of cream soda which is almost immediately covered up by overwhelming soap flavors. It's cringeworthy and would make a better steak sauce than a beer, tasting like carbonated H&P British Steak Sauce.

The mouthfeel is weak and soda-like and there is carbonation like soda but with zero foam. I really don't know what brewmaster signed off on this gross concoction. I literally threw 3 bottles away after drinking the first one. At near $20 for a 4 pack of bottles, it's almost criminal to sell this. It's worse than most Red's Apple Ale wine coolers.

Do yourself a favor and, as good as Salted Carmel Porter sounds, do NOT touch this beer with a 10 foot pole.

Nov 21, 2020
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Shelbs90 from Montana

1/5  rDev -76%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

worst beer i’ve had lately. it was atrocious. smelled disgusting. tastes like 100 year old carnival candies dropped in the dirt. would not recommend to anyone.

Oct 29, 2020
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The_Coach from Ohio

4.54/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Well done. Like this one a lot better than the Creme Brûlée version from Southern Tier. There’s no mistaking the salted caramel flavor, but it doesn’t go so far overboard you can’t tell it’s a stout beer.

My biggest problem with it is that it’s so hard to find. Every other beer in this series is much easier to source.

Dec 27, 2018
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jjamadorphd from Florida

4.06/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I got to christen my new NASA Kennedy Space Center pint glass with this brew, I am so glad I did...

A beautifully black brew with little head and no lacing gives way to the most delicious of scents of nutmeg, chocolate, and caramel that I have ever had a beer produce to my nose. The only thing the beer lacked was a scent of the 10% ABV, hidden behind all those scents and even hidden behind all the flavor from the taste. The mouthfeel is creamy, but not enough to overcome the considerable carbonation this thing puts off. If it weren't for that it would have been absolutely amazing. A very good dessert beer and another great offering from ST.

Aug 06, 2018
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beerthulhu from New Jersey

4.13/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

-Brewed with seasalt and caramelized sugars. DOB 08.21.17. Consumed in chalice 03.05.18.

A: Dark viscose pour, coffee colored, has a creamy 1/2 inch walnut toned head that was very stable and lengthy. Small micro-effervesce on the glass walls with a speckled lacing on the interior. Really love the creamy texture and coloring of the head when swirled, like a mocha topping.

S: Big candy caramel sweetness, milky cocoa powder with some peanut candy chew scents. Big dessert style aroma, sight hints of sea salt with a soft and beautiful bitterness and milky chocolate richness @ 10.0% shows no detection of it's alcohol strength. It's big sweet nature just may give you diabetes.

T: Big roasty flavor, deep rich bitterness of freshly ground coffee beans, oily and aromatic, with loads of vanilla and caramel creamer to balance. Milky chocolate and cocoa sweetness, roasty sweetness of caramelized sugars, earthy bitterness and some burnt campfire marshmellow. Silty ash with a touch of that sea salt blending beautifully together with the sweet caramel. Nice finish of roasted bitterness and ash that gently lingers behind with a light dry touch.

M: Heavy milky creamy weight, softly carbonated with a bittering roastiness around the tongues edges.

O: Overall sweet and enticing dessert style beer. Big bold roasty nature is balanced beautifully with caramelized sugars and vanilla sweetness. Milky chocolate and cocoa powder bring some extra sweetening to the pot. Very favorable first impression aroma and flavor wise that stays with you the entire drink. Great drinkability, at 10% you would never suspect the alcohol. Outstanding per style with a very good range of aroma and flavor and nice adjuncts such as the caramelized sugars and sea salt provides a nice innovation and twist. Outstanding big dessert style that will fill you up.

Mar 17, 2018
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SHODriver from North Carolina

4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: poured into a snifter to a black beer topped by a finger of dense tan head which retains well but slowly fades to a collar around the edge of the glass with minimal lacing.
S: Smells of straight caramel on the nose with a bit of chocolate and roasted malt
T: Taste is slightly salty upon entry with a huge blast of caramel followed by some chocolate and roasted malt flavors. Still very caramel forward and sugary sweet. Swallow is a little more salt along with another hit of that caramel character with a little lingering roasted malt
M: This beer is fairly thick in body with a slightly sticky mouthfeel from all the residual sugar. Carbonation is slightly prickly which is a bit higher than I would like it to be while the beer has a drying finish.
O: Overall this beer tastes like what they were aiming for. It's a huge beer that tastes like caramel with a hint of stout. Kind of loud and very sweet on the palate which definitely makes this one a dessert beer. Not bad if you like dessert stouts or super sweet stouts but not one I personally plan to revisit.

Mar 16, 2018
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Krajnyak from Pennsylvania

4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great look and smell. I got a supriingly balanced caramel flavor, but the salt seems to gone in too much at the end. It’s not overpowering, but definetly identifiable. I’m just not a fan of that aftertaste. Overall, this is a solid brew and worth a try.

Feb 23, 2018
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chinchill from South Carolina

4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle served in a goblet. 23 May 2016 bottling date.
Smooth, full mouthfeel with partially hidden alcohol. Clear dark body with a weak beige head.
Loads of caramel aroma and flavor yet very good complexity. Sweet, but at an appropriate level for the style. Mildly bitter (and excellent) aftertaste removed the hazard of cloying sweetness suggested by the aroma. Some salt and dark dried fruit notes.
Excellent with dark chocolate.

Feb 07, 2018
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EMV from Pennsylvania

4.06/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Dogfish Head tulip. 2017 edition.

L: Inky black pour with 1 finger of brown head. Falls fast with a solid rim of lacing.

S: Caramel and cocoa... roasted sugars. As advertised... smells like a dessert.

T/F: Burned sugars and sweetness. Mild char... strong caramel and chocolate presence. Mild vanilla and hazelnut. Medium to thick bodied... sticky and warming. Picking up some of the sea salt near the finish.

O: Delivers what it advertises... a big sweet dessert stout. Great flavor... thick and warming... boozy. A sipper for those cold winter nights, and seeing as it's 10 degrees out in PA right now... just what the doctor ordered.

Feb 03, 2018
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NeroFiddled from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Southern Tier Brewing Company "Salted Caramel"
12 fl. oz. brown glass bottle, "DOB 08/21/17 09:24PM" and sampled on 12/23/17
$5.99 @ Total wine & More, Cherry Hill, NJ

Notes via stream of consciousness: Wow, $6 for this? I wonder if it'll be worth it. It's poured an opaque brown-black body beneath a finger thick head of rocky dark tan. It definitely smells of caramel, warm sweet golden caramel. I'm guessing that's from "natural flavors" though. Let's see... it's hard to tell. It lists "natural flavor" on the label, but it also lists "caramelized sugar" so who knows. It's not bad how ever you cut it though, in fact it smells great. It's really enticing. On to the flavor... definitely caramelish. Somehow it's not too sweet though, I guess because of the bitterness which is fairly high, and the salt. I feel like it's too bitter, it lingers, and this is supposed to be a "dessert beer", it says it right on the label. Without it I think the salt would help to balance it but I'm not sure. For me, personally, it's too bitter. What else? It's very rich and full with a creamy, full body. And it is kind of a one-trick pony but as I've sometimes said before, it's a good enough trick. Looking back the head has held up well and the lacing is quite good.

Dec 23, 2017
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dlos from North Carolina

4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jet black color with long lasting dark tan head, not much lacing. Immediate and big scents on vanilla and chocolate on the nose with a little bit of coffee. Smooth feel and quite balanced. As a dessert beer this is great, little on the sweet side though but I guess that's where it's supposed to be.

Dec 23, 2017
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Fee from Pennsylvania

4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Beautiful black color and dark head that persists. Aroma is marvelously balanced and you can pick up the chocolate and vanilla underpinnings. Very smooth with strong flavor, the only criticism is that it's a bit too sweet and that limits it's consumption.

Dec 20, 2017
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Dodo2step from Pennsylvania

4.36/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A- dark black with a one finger head. minimal lacing and opaque

S- caramel and coffee notes, vanilla and burnt wood

F- vanilla dominates with the salted caramel coming on the back end. coffee hints as well.

M- coffee caramel and vanilla coat the mouth

O- not bad and very tasty! Goes down fairly smooth

Dec 07, 2017
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jdhilt from New Hampshire

3.91/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a two finger tan head that fades slowly leaving some lace. Black color, no highlights. Medium carbonation and medium bodied. Caramel nose and flavor is Sweet and salt caramel. $9.99 for a 22oz bottle from Calef's Country Store Barrington, NH.

Dec 03, 2017
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Cylinsier from Pennsylvania

4.28/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle

Pours jet opaque black, tan film for a head retains indefinitely.

Smells of chocolate syrup, caramel, sea salt, vanilla, pecan, and oak.

Flavor is of caramel, chocolate syrup, biscuit, mesquite, vanilla, burnt oak and lactose.

Body is full and viscous. Light tingly carbonation on the roof of the mouth. Boozy warmth going down.

Very tasty dessert beer. Drinks very slow, intensely rich. Worth trying.

Nov 17, 2017
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Irishman_Scott from Pennsylvania

5/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I've had a ton of great beers since being turned onto craft brews quite a while back now. Love many styles but am a tried and true Stout guy. And this one is off the hook! The appearance and mouthfeel screams classic Stout. Mildly carbonated and beautiful black. Had from a bottle and hard poured it. A bit of head remained after a few minutes, laced a bit. The smell is definitely chocolate and caramel. Yes, all that matters to me some, but my bottom line on any beer is the taste. And my oh my! My taste buds, anyhow, get the chocolate, caramel, and vanilla right off the bat, then it finishes up, to me anyway, like a classic Imperial Stout. Unbelievable flavour! Very smooth as well. Stout fans, it's a must try. On the fence about Stouts? Well, try this one and you'll be sold.

Nov 14, 2017
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Wasatch from Colorado

4.34/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz. Bottle
DOB: 08/21/17

Poured into a Tree House glass a pretty nice dark brown/black color, pretty nice carbonation, with a pretty nice creamy small tan head, which does leave some pretty nice sticky lacing behind. The nose is pretty nice, malty, with some chocolate/toffee, very nice sweetness, fruity, caramel, vanilla, licorice. The taste is really nice, malty, with a really nice touch of chocolate/toffee, fruityness, caramel, vanilla, slight licorice. Full Body, ABV hidden very well with this brew, a really nice complex brew. Overall, this one really surprised me, saw it around for months in a bomber, but did not want to take a chance on it. Glad it come out in a 12er. Definitely a sipper, but it goes down pretty fast.

Nov 09, 2017
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stakem from Pennsylvania

2.11/5  rDev -49.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 1.5

12oz bottle into a snifter appears black in color with cola clarity around the edges. A tan cap is quick to fade leaving spotty lace.

The aroma is strangely cola-like with a caramel to almost root beer thing going on.

The taste is strangely not what i was expecting. There is a green yeastiness to this with a bit of acrid char and roast. Very minimal caramel character and no sweetness as this is quite dried out and somewhat boozy to fusel.

This is medium in body with modest carbonation. Overall a disappointment and probably the worst ive tried in the blackwater series. Southern tier usually nails it home when they claim whatever flavor profile/adjuncts they went with, this was pretty terrible to the extent that it might have even been tainted in some way. Salted Caramel it surely was not.... a better title would have been vegetative hairspray.

Oct 03, 2017
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VABA from Virginia

4.19/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a nice solid jet black color with a nice tan head and lacing
Aroma has generous chocolate milk, caramelized sugar and Himalayan salt hints
The taste follows the nose with a silky chocolate milk, caramelized sugar and Himalayan salt flavor
A medium bodied decently carbonated beer
A well done stout

Sep 30, 2017
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brureview from Massachusetts

4.24/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Color: jet brown black-brown with a 1F head in a Stone RIS glass.

Aroma: caramel, butterscotch, lingers throughout the tasting. Great.

MF: rich, heavy, malty.

Taste: mostly caramel, sweet.

Mild bitterness with warming.

Excellent beer for dinner for dessert.

Sep 16, 2017
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lordofthewiens from New Mexico

4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It is black with a teensy mocha head.
Aroma as the label implies: caramel, chocolate, vanilla, and booze.
Salted caramel taste. Booze, chocolate, some vanilla, and some coffee.
Smooth. Nice dessert beer.

Sep 10, 2017
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Jsalz21 from New Jersey

3.81/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Blackwater series strikes again! I feel like everyone I know bashes it, but I am open minded as ever for this.

Cracking the bottle cap, a smell already jumps out, but I'll focus on how it looks for the moment. Pours a fizzy head that fizzles away and leaves it looking just black and opaque in the glass.

The aforementioned aroma is super forward, smelling like burnt sugar, vanilla and a boozy note. In all honesty, something about it strikes me as artificial.

A briny, milk chocolate character is noticeable. Caramel is there, but plays second fiddle to the saltiness. Anything else I recognize is the booziness and a bit a vanilla. It tastes like it should, at least for the most part.

The mouthfeel of this is where I don't know what to make of it. It's not a giant creamy or smooth mouthfeel like I'd expect. It's more or less a slight smoothness and then the salt produces a somewhat disjointed mouthfeel.

As much as I detest beers that exist for making "floats" and other such silliness, I would be lying if I said this wouldn't be improved with an addition of some form of vanilla ice cream. It is certainly a beer made for dessert, but it is missing the typical mouthfeel for a beer of this caliber. That could be me not liking the salt ratio in this, but that's just me then. Overall, I'd say this is worth trying once at the very least.

Sep 03, 2017
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morimech from Minnesota

3.6/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is one sweet beer. I wish it was still in 12oz bottles as the 22oz bottle I am drinking, is way too much. Smells a bit like eggnog with a healthy spike of dark rum. The flavor has a lot of sweet caramel with the only thing countering it is the salt and alcohol. It is overwhelming.

Aug 21, 2017
Salted Caramel Imperial Stout from Southern Tier Brewing Company
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 344 ratings