Dismiss Notice
We're celebrating 10 years of BeerAdvocate magazine with $10 print subscriptions for US residents.

Subscribe now!

Creme Brulee (Imperial Milk Stout) | Southern Tier Brewing Company

Log in or Sign up to start rating.
very good
1,431 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Creme Brulee (Imperial Milk Stout)Creme Brulee (Imperial Milk Stout)

Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company
New York, United States

Style: Milk / Sweet Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
The brewer suggests a serving temperature of 42 °F for this beer.

Added by ph2001 on 07-12-2008

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 1,431 | Ratings: 4,487
Photo of mikedashg
4.52/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark black with a great sizes tan head

S - Wow! Sweet caramel creme brulee. marshmallows, vanilla, toffee, burnt sugar.

T - Just like it smells,and complex. very sweet, creme brulee, caramel, vanilla toffee, burnt sugar, etc. Roasted malts, chocolate, butter cream/butterscotch and coffee.

M - Moderate carbonation and a little syrup.

D - If you like sweet dark chocolate caramel sugar beers, this is IT! It's totally as advertised "Creme Brulee" I don't know how Southern Tier does it. But this is SPOT on. I really liked this one. Remember butterscotch lifeavers? Yeah, YUM!

I can't believe some people gave this a low review because it tastes like it should. A sweet creme brulee stout beer.

 712 characters

Photo of kylehayworth
4.14/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This was a treat for me, cheers to Jason.

A: The pour was a deep brown, with a white maybe ever so tan head. The lacing was on point as well.

S: WOW...the smell was amazing, I could taste it without even drinking it. So much caramel, vanilla, and loads of butterscotch.

T: It taste just the same way it smells, and the general consensus was Werther's Original candy.

M/D: Thick and luscious, mild carbonation. This is a great beer to share with a couple of people, consuming a whole bottle will surely leave you with a tummy ache.

 534 characters

Photo of CaptainTripps
4.62/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz Bottle poured into a Duvel tulip.

A: The beer pours a very, very dark brown approaching black. No light on the edges. This is one thick looking beer (almost syrup like). Came with a fingers worth of dark brown head leaving sticky lacing down the glass.

S: oh, WOW. This thing is amazing. Instantly you get hit with strong notes of burnt sugar, vanilla, butterscotch, sweet cream, caramel and chocolate. Its heaven in a glass. Very rich flavors as well.

T: Following the nose, this is a thing of beauty if you have a sweet tooth. Upon the first sip you get this burnt sugar taste, similar to maybe a burnt marshmellow? This is followed up by strong notes of butterscotch and vanilla. Also getting notes of chocolate, sweet cream, caramel and alcohol. Really rich and in your face beer. Its a tastebuds work out.

M: Thick, like a chocolate milk shake and super smooth. Carbonation is low, which I think is key with this beer. Alcohol present but not over thet top.

O: If I am ever in a mood for something sweet with a little kick, this is the beer I will come back to. Probably one of the most powerful smelling beers I have yet to have.

It was goood.

 1,165 characters

Photo of Kartoffeln
3.76/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours mahogany so dark it's practically black against the light, with a substantial tan head of creamy, bubbly foam that sinks to a ring and leaves strings of lacing.

S: Butterscotch and creme brulee dominates the nose, strongly sweet caramel with a faint charred note drowned in French vanilla with a buttery custard undertone. Faint chocolate and roasted malt notes come through and mingle to produce aromas of caffe mocha and hazelnuts. Mild booziness throughout. It's appetising, but kind of artificial and overdone like something off a Starbucks menu.

T: Sweet caramel, custard, and vanilla dominates the sip before letting some roasty chocolate malts through, producing a sweet caffe mocha and hazelnut flavour following the nose. Roasted malts pull through with hints of black coffee and smoke in the finish alongside woody hops. The ABV is pretty well-concealed.

M: Full-bodied with very mild carbonation and a substantial, chewy, but smooth texture like heavy cream. The roasty bitterness in the finish does a bit to backstop the overwhelming sweetness of the palate, but altogether it comes off too sugary and makes the 650 mL bottle a chore to get down in one sitting.

D: In no way, shape, or form is this an "American Double/Imperial Stout" as listed and it hasn't been reviewed as such; it's a milk stout, strong and sweet. A pretty good milk stout, too, but excessively sweet; the creme brulee premise overwhelms the stout base instead of complementing it, and the vanilla is overdone. It feels like a novelty, but it's still worthy of serious consideration if you've got a friend that'd fancy splitting a bottle for dessert.

 1,646 characters

Photo of gatorbreath
4.06/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Man, this was more of a teaser than anything...couldn't drink a whole pint if I wanted...

Appearance is dark with webby head that sticks to everything it touches..the drink is so sweet and finishes semi-bitter, I feel like I just ate a sweet treat with each bite. I feel like this is more a novelty beer, i cant imagine this being soeones go-to joint. Enjoyed my little bit, probably gonna pass from here on out..


 421 characters

Photo of Pabs311
4.17/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I recently tasted an '08 and '09 side by side. I have to say that the year in a bottle does this bear wonders. If you have the patience, lay one or two down. i ahve a couple more '08s that im gonna wait another year before crackin open. I'm gonna review the '08 after a year.

A- pours dark and opaque with a good good sized dark tan/coffee colored head.

S- you can smell the vanilla coming off this before before u even lift it to ur nose. There's a ton a vanilla and butterscoth with a malty backbone to the aroma of this beer. id to just sit there and smell it all day, but where's the fun in that?

T- The taste reflects the aroma 100%. The beer has also smoothed out quite alot over the yearof aging and any bitterness that can be seen in the '09 has almost completely disappered.The beer is a little on the sweetside though because of all the vanilla.

M/D- Mouthfeel is on the fullbodied side, coats the palate very well and lingers well. This is a beer that i wouldn't be able to drink all by myslef. the flavor is very robust and is more of a sipper. plus it's so good i like to share with a friend so they can experience this beer as well.

got a couple '09s to lay down so we'll see how a 2 year old '08, 1 year old '09 and new '10 comapre next year!

 1,263 characters

Photo of DawnL
3.95/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Deep, dark color with lots of sticky lacing.

Vanilla bean first on the nose - then a real milky, creamy aroma that really does make me think of creme brulee. Okay, more pots de creme - but still delicious.

Vanilla definitely comes across on the palate very strongly.

For the dessert beers - it's all about the mouthfeel. Silky, smooth, like drinking a milk shake. Rich and unctuous. Drinks like a dessert - like melted ice cream.

Absolutely lives up to its name - this is like drinking creme brulee. Also, not all that easy to imbibe due to high abv and the sweetness that can be cloying at times.

 601 characters

Photo of antlerwrestler19
4.36/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours pitch black with a small caramel colored head that fades quickly leaving nothing behind - just a menacing looking brew. The smell is ridiculous in the best of ways - vanilla, coffee, cookie dough, roasted marshmellows, chocolate, brown sugar - man this is impressive. The taste follows suit imparting the same delicious and decadent sweetness that plays out in the nose - just a one of a kind beer here. A little on the lighter bodied side from what I was expecting and a decent amount of carbonation - also noted the slight burn from the booze. This is truly a unique beer, I've never had anything quite like it. I'm glad I have a few more bottles of this to set aside and see what happens with a little bit of time.


 732 characters

Photo of braker649er
3.84/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

My highest praise is that this beer represented truth in advertising--the flavor was an undeniable dessert beer that was very sweet, and had creamy-caramel-toffee flavor just like you'd expect from the name. I was in favor of the high ABV (especially high as a milk stout)--the booze gave the sweetness dimension.

It almost felt like you could achieve this beer by brewing a solid base and then adding butterscotch syrup. That may sound a bit cynical. Actually by this I mostly mean that the taste was on target.

The flip side: A few sips in, I couldn't decide if I actually *wanted* a beer that tasted like burnt cream/caramel. My bad? I rated relatively highly even though this wasn't ultimately a beer I'd buy again.

 722 characters

Photo of dowen17
3.45/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours black with a huge, creamy milk chocolate colored head. Leaves some decent lacing down the glass but the head recedes to a small cap.

Smell is of pure caramel. Melted candy corn. Some alcohol. Really REALLY sweet. Also some vanilla extract.

Tastes like a melted caramel candy. Candy corn, vanilla extract, sweet sweet malt, and alcohol. This beer does not hide the alcohol well at all. Definitely a dessert beer though.

Mouthfeel is creamy and chewy. Not the thickest beer in the world but very nice.

Overall this beer would be great with a slice of cake. Not something you could drink every day because its VERY sweet but its good.

 645 characters

Photo of ph2001
4.62/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle in snifter

a hard pour gets one finger of head that leaves very quickly. black. the smell is ridiculous; sweet, sticky, strong like butterscotch, like vanilla and carmel. it smells how the candy corns at halloween taste. the smell itself is fantastic, but as a beer it doesn't make sense. very faintly hiding in the back is a hint of malt and booze.

it tastes like it smells, but much smoother and tolerable. the 10% is not there at all, if someone said it was only 7% i'd be shocked, but somehow it's a hefty 10. wow. the sweetness is incredibly strong of carmel and vanilla, just like choklat tastes strong like fudge brownie batter. this is not your average beer. this is your imperial milk stout! the flavors coming out of this are crazy and unlike any beer i've ever had. it has the longest lasting and most satisfying aftertaste ever. it goes on forever and tastes almost better than the beer itself. i thas a light medium body, smooth and somewhat creamy, typical of a milk stout. if it was any thicker it would be way too much with the strong flavor. this beer is probably too much for some people as it is. this beer doesn't go with desert, it is desert. pretty crazy and unique, definitely worth a shot. it is walking the fine line of being too sweet, but it is not sickeningly sweet.

edit: had on tap at sunset bar and grill and flavors were pretty different. the sweetness was much more mild and the maltiness came out a bit more. it also had a drier feel to it. still good but a good drop off from the bottle.

 1,538 characters

Photo of srroos
4.15/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an opaque dark brown with a small brown head. Smells like butterscotch, vanilla, and expresso. Gives the impression of tiramasu more that creme brulee to me. Taste is dominated by burnt sugar, with notes of butterscotch and espresso following. Full bodied as expected for an imperial stout. Alcohol is very well hidden.

A very interesting beer all around. I'm very glad I tried this one, but not sure I'll be seeking out more. Ignore all the critics; try this if you can!

 478 characters

Photo of Deerslayer210
4.66/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This is the stout that turned me into the addict I am today. I first had it on tap at the brewery tour. It was super smooth and had a taste unlike I had had before. It is a coffee, chocolate, and vanilla like no other. If the vanilla sweetness was turned down just a pinch this beer would be taken to a 5. The smell of this fine stout might be the best of any beer out there and makes you close your eyes and breath in deep again and again. They should make it into an air freshener.

 483 characters

Photo of BradT
4.73/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

My favorite beer that I can get on a reg... bar none and I'm an IPA guy. My next favorite is Sierra Nevada Bigfoot... I could drink ST CB every day... Wish it were easier to get 1/6 kegs of it. Honestly, the first time I had it I was surprised as I'd ever been by a beer. Amazing.

Smell - like a mochacino... Delicious
Taste - a perfect mix of coffee, chocolate, and sweet vanilla... With a hint of alcohol
Mouth - nice thickness, without being a milkshake
Appearance - if it appears in my glass... I'm happy

 510 characters

Photo of challenja
5/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served On Tap at Westover Market Arlington, VA

A: Dark black havoc. Zero foam residue. Pure heaven!

S: ohhh my my my. Sweet sweet malt balls, Vanilla sugar cookies, dark roast Costa Rican coffee beans. Caramelized sugar cane.

T: OMG. OMG.. seriously... OMG... Southern Tier are the masters of Dessert beer!!!
Vanilla with caramel swirl ice cream. Toasted Honey bun. Oak Cask. Dark roasted Costa Ricas coffee. Whopping malt balls. Like WHOPPERS candy in a glass!!
The Full creamy dairy milk masks the booze in this utterly delicious brew.

M: Richy creamy medium carbo mouth full. This would be glorious on a nitro tap! Smooth and gum tingling. It really coats the tongue O so well.

O: So amazing. It's so out of this world amazing that it should be held high above all other stouts as WOW... This will knock the socks off anyone who tries it. This is what should be served with my last meal..
Get yours NOW. Today.. Check all beer places. and Buy as many bottles as you can.. Well save some. just get 3.

 1,016 characters

Photo of dananabanana
3.54/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2

A: Dark brown to inky black, thick white head.

S: Sweet vanilla caramel.

T: Sweet malt, coffee/espresso notes. Bitterness on the back of the tongue.

M: Very creamy!

D: Good, but the more you drink, the more bitter it gets. They took the "brulee" part a bit too seriously, the burnt flavor is too overwhelming to drink more than half a glass of this.

 354 characters

Photo of iabeerbaron
3.52/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Wow, awesome aroma for this beer. Smells like butterscotch, caramel, and vanailla. Really nice pour, medium tan head. Flavor was very good, but got to be a little too sweet for me. The vanilla, in particular, was a little too overpowering for me. Bomber bottle is way too much for me. Really unique brew.

 304 characters

Photo of USCTrojanBrian
4.27/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

The very first bottle from The Perfect Pour (Columbia, MD), plucked right out of the box.

Smells of vanilla and coffee cream, quite good aroma. Dark, not quite jet black color. Smooth and creamy drinker, it hit a ton of intangibles here.

However, the taste didn't do it for me. As per the rules I'm judging taste by the style and what they were trying to accomplish here which clearly will earn good marks. But from a personal point of view, and this is probably heresy, I didn't come close to enjoying this offering from Southern Tier.

The taste is a bit more coffee cream than creme brulee, but the effect is similar of a sweet, vanilla and coffee and chocolate dessert beer. Very little to complain about if you dig that combination of flavors. Well worth the effort if so.

 779 characters

Photo of BravoTwo
3.7/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Deep black / brown, very minimal head and carbonation. Looks thick.

S - Smeels of vanilla, cream, and burnt sugar. Smells like a beer called Creme Brulee should very aromatic.

T - Sweet burnt sugar taste. Creamy, sugary, dark.

M - Viscous mouthfeel, very minimal carbonation, thick and rich.

D - If you want a sweet beer with a lot of character, then this would be an excellent choice. Definitely a desert beer, and a good choice for an after dinner drink.

 464 characters

Photo of json83
2.4/5  rDev -38.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

9.6% ABV and 288 calories per bottle. I was attracted to tasting something different and surprise how well it smelled after opening the bottle. The taste was extremely off-putting - vanilla and coffee sounds attractive but the blunt caramel/butterscotch favor that kicks in does not match well with the combination. Easily one of the sweetest beers I've ever had. To be fair, you get used to it the more you consume, but it was just a weird taste at first. This is one combination I'll probably never see again and I do not regret trying it, however I would not purchase again.

 577 characters

Photo of hippityhops85
2.03/5  rDev -48.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

This is such a bizarre beer. The name alone would drive me NOT to taste it but we'll take one for the team here. (Note, I am generally not a fan of milk stouts)

About three oz poured into a sample glass from draft.

Pours a deep, opaque black with an offwhite head that quickly dissipates leaving spotty bubbles on top of the brew.

THE NOSE IS INSANE! So much vanilla, nutmeg, cinnamon, chocolate, roasted malts. It's literally a punch to the senses. If the beer tastes anything like this it should be good.

Woah, what happened to the taste? Initially the taste does follow the nose but only for a second. The wonderful spice armoa from the nose is swallowed up in a bitterness that's really unpleasing. This bitterness along with the OVERWHELMING sweetness of the beer is just nausiating. There is a fair amount of lactic acid which really doesn't help the beer in the least. It's almost super sweet bile. Blech.

The mouthfeel is much thinner than I would have wanted out of a beer claiming this much flavor. Relatively moderate carbonation coupled with a too-thin mouthfeel and the ever-lingering bitterness/sweetness combo does not help this beer at all.

I've never claimed to be a fan of milk stouts and this doesn't help the cause IMO. I'd avoid this brew and take a well-rounded imperial stout over it without all the "pizazz."


 1,347 characters

Photo of Kbogac
4.34/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tulip glass. Very dark, no light passes through. Almost no head. Small ring stays around the edge. Huge vanilla & caramel nose. Some coffee too. The first sip is very sweet & intense. You almost need to drink a little to get past he sweetness. After the initial shock the flavor is very reminiscent of tiramisu instead of creme burlee. Definately a dessert beer. Mild carbonation with a medium mouth feel. Once you get past the first taste and it warms a little this is a very enjoyable beer. The 24 oz. bottle would be a great dessert split between four people. I don't think I would like more that one at a sitting but I'll keep one in the around for friends.

 675 characters

Photo of drowninginhops
3.95/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a standard pint glass. From a growler at the Charleston Beer Exchange 8-27/11

A: Completely black with a great head with a lot of sticky lacing.

S: Very sweet dessert smell. Vanilla, butterscotch, some caramel.

T: Very sweet with just a tiny bit of hop bitterness. Vanilla, butterscotch and caramel.

M: Full bodied with soft carbonation. Thick and creamy.

O: I liked this, but I will not be getting a growler again. Definitely will and have got bottles.

 471 characters

Photo of AnPiobaire
3.53/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This stout pours a rich dark brown to black with a very thin tan head that quickly recedes to the edge finishing in a halo around the stout.

Chocolate and vanilla dominate the nose when initially nosing this brew. It pulls no punches, as it states that it is what it is.

Initial taste of maltiness is quickly overtaken by chocolate and vanilla followed by a buttery caramel finish. It truly is creme brulee in a bottle.

This stout has a rich creamy mouthfell with moderate carbonation. More carbonation that I expected from such a rich brew.

Overall this stout is no doubt a dessert beer through and through. It is very difficult imagining drinking more then one pint in a row. However, as a dessert beer it does the job exquisitely. I would certainly reccomend this brew to others as a dessert beer only. To those who do not like sweet brews keep your distance. I would've scored this brew higher if it weren't so one dimensional.

 939 characters

Photo of darthvohn
4.19/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Glass Used: Tulip

Appearance: The body is a glossy black which is opaque as a brick wall. A quarter inch beige head formed and quickly scattered leaving only a ring of micro bubbles around the edge of the glass. Virtually no lacing left behind.

Smell: Huge, fragrant vanilla and butterscotch cream, brown sugar, and carmelization notes. A lot of sweetness on the nose here.

Taste: Big vanilla and custard sweetness,with some burnt sugar and malt bitterness. Surprised how balanced it is considering the nose was very sweet. The booze did show up in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Wow. Very chewy, smooth and creamy. Medium carbonation.

Overall: Pretty nice milk stout but could not finish the entire bomber by myself. It tastes like a creme brulee. If you are a big fan of the dessert (I am) then you'll love this beer. Would love to pair this with a carmelized banana dessert as Southern Tier suggests.

 900 characters

Creme Brulee (Imperial Milk Stout) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
3.93 out of 5 based on 4,487 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Extreme Beer Fest® Cometh

    February 3-4, 2017. Boston, Mass. Limited tickets available. Prepare for epicness.

    Learn More
  • 10 Years of BeerAdvocate Magazine

    We're celebrating 10 years of BA mag with $10 print subscriptions for US residents!