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

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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

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Reviews: 1,431 | Ratings: 4,484
Photo of mporter249
4.04/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep brown/black, small but solid head. Opaque. Looks tasty.

Smell: Definitely creamy and sugary. Actually smells a LOT like creme brulee. Not much as far as familiar beer-y smells, but that's not a bad thing here. I honestly can't stop thinking about cracking the caramelized top. Yum. Naturally, there's some caramel there, too.

Taste: Sweetness and bitterness up front, mingles into mild bitterness on the way out. A nice smoothness.Well-balanced by my measure except for a moment midway through the taste when the bitterness overwhelms the sweet side, but only for a second.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, smooth for the most part, carbonation just right for me.

Overall: I really like this. Definitely a desserty beer, but good. 9/10 would drink again.

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Photo of BeerShirts
4.32/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Dark brown almost black with a thin layer of head

s- Vanilla and caramel shout out through the smell of this beer

T- Sweet Vanilla and caramel taste just like the smell. strong malt background as well. Just a ton of flavor coming at you

M- Thick and creamy

D- Perfect desert beer.

I have have had this one time before this review so I knew what I was getting into. I served some steak with a smoked beer and served this beer with a chocolate mousse pie. worked out perfectly.

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Photo of brewcore
4.54/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From notes:

Served on draught at Cork in North Charleston, SC. Poured into a pint glass.

A: Opaque pitch black. Thin head with moderate lacing. Legs akin to port wine.

S: Very fragrant and very dessert-like. Smells just like the name suggests. Creme brulee all the way. I even pick up some tiramisu notes. Sweet and rich vanilla aromas heavily cover roasted malts.

T: Super sweet and super rich. More going on than lingering sweetness from the malts. Tons of caramel and vanilla. Tastes like it was poured through creme brulee. No hops bitterness noticed.

M: Body is full and sticky like caramel. Very rich. Light carbonation.

O: The name hits the nail on the head. This is a fantastic dessert beer of which I will return. My wife does not even care much for beer but she loved it. She couldn't hardly put the glass down. Due to the richness of the beer the drinkability is fairly low. I don't think I would want much more than a pint of this beer. In the future I will buy a bomber to split for dessert.

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Photo of blatherbeard
4.59/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Oh where to start. First off, ive never really had creme brulee and i hate custard.

I pour this brew and im kind of surprised at how dark it is. I expected it to be lighter because it was supposed to have a vanillasih taste.

Well, the smell is fan-freaking-tastic, if you like vanilla. Im more of a chocolate guy but man if this doesnt smell like a vanilla hot cocoa or a vanilla bean cappucino.

A taste of coffee, chocolate and a ton of vanilla assaults your taste buds like john wayne attacking Iwo Jima!

The mouth is smooth, thick, but not rich, and tasty.

Very drinkable. Where the choklat is overpowering later in the beer, and kind of bitter, the creme brulee is sweet, thick and not overpowering at all. A perfect balance of all the flavors. I could drink a few of these they are so good. (will revise if i wake up at night burping vanilla like i did the choklat)

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Photo of jonvan04
4.39/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured black with a tan head. The aroma was an addicting amount of vanilla with a nice amount of sweetness. The taste wasn't as great as the aroma but was still very enjoyable. It wasn't too sweet, but had an incredible vanilla, creamy flavor to it. It was also very drinkable considering the style and the alcohol content. I wish they would make a cologne or a candle or something so I could smell this beer's aroma all the time. This was a phenominal beer. I'm really starting to love how over the top many of Souther Tier's beers are. The pumpking pushed the boundaries of how pumpkin a pumpkin beer can be, and this beer does the same for a beer with vanilla. I'd highly recommend this.

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Photo of Aleks_P
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Fitting appearance for the style. Opaque dark brown, almost black, with a heavy and thick tan head.

Smell: Smell is the standout feature here, I noticed the caramel and vanilla aroma as I was pouring it. Smelled like candy. Normally I'd find this a bit offputting, but I did pay for "creme brulee" stout.

Taste: The alcohol is a bit overpowering for my taste, hard to notice the caramel/vanilla (other than the smell) or even the coffee notes of the stout. I was expecting something a little sweeter.

Mouthfeel: Feel the alcohol sting a bit, but otherwise nothing notable. Stoutlike.

Overall: I was disappointed with this one. Admittedly, stouts are not my favorite styles of beer but I've had enough of them to understand the style. Thought the beer smelled great but was disappointed with the taste, the alcohol was not masked and overpowered the beer.

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Photo of Archimetez
3.87/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Nice dark color, some light is let through. Head is ok but not great.
-- Label is eye catching

S: Overpowering sweetness and vanilla. No doubt about what they are aiming for.

T: Sickening sweet with overpowering vanilla. Complete lack of normal stout flavors. However, the name and taste align perfecting, southern tier is right on the money in that regard.

M: Smooth and silky. Finishes nicely

O: So I have to admit, I personally am not a fan of this brew. However, that being said, the name Creme Brulee is perfect and it lives up to its name. If you like over powered flavored beer, you will love this, if you don't, proceed with caution. Regardless, it is worth a taste to expand your flavor profiles and what can be done with beer. I rated it highly because the name fits the taste, and although I don't really like it, I am sure others will love it.

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Photo of bryanbullock
3.68/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

The smell lives up to the name sake 100 fold, the smell of butterscotch punches you in the face, it is so pungent that it overwhelms you it smells like desert, you get hints of chocolate and vanilla but that is masked by the overwhelming sweetness of the smell. The pour is solid black but the froth and the head lack, the beer needs carbonation. The taste fails to deliver on the smell, it lacks viscosity and for a beer at 9.6 abv it does not have the mouthfeel you would desire. The finish is poor leaving you with a chalking and uncomfortable aftermath of "blah".

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Photo of kenpo23
4.54/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Wow, they went for it and they nailed it!

A - Poured dark ebony with a temporary head.

S - Smells just like creme brulee. I defy you to differ!

T - Now come on, its called creme brulee...if you dont expect it to be very sweet than dont even bother. The caramel flavor is amazing with a great aftertaste of vanilla and alcohol.

D - drinkablity was as good as you can get for a drink that tastes like dessert. If you love dessert than you're going to think this is a great addition to any meal or a good substitute when a pint of ben & jerrys just wont do.

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Photo of telecomz
3.48/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark brown-to-black. Plenty of carbonation with a 1/2 inch head.

S: It smells exactly what I wanted it to smell like. aramel and vanilla. Wonderful.

T: Vanilla and caramel to begin. Sweetness in the middle. The ending hop bitterness is unbalanced. Too much.

M: Not heavy or 'chewy' at all. Surprisingly light.

D: A great dessert beer.

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Photo of NedShakeshaft
3.86/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I served it cool, poured from the bottle into a pint glass. The beer was dark brown, almost black, with a half-inch-thick soft toast-brown head. The head had terrific retention, still crowning the beer on the last slug.

The vanilla bean aroma was overpowering but there were notes of toffee underneath and chocolate as well as a faint grapefruit way underneath.

The alcohol stings the front of the tongue, but that fire is put out immediately by the milky, vanilla froth. It's milkshake sweet, and then some. And it's thick. Slightly burnt.

The sweetness if followed by ...more sweetness as the toffee malts roll in. Finishes with a tad of dark chocolate bitterness which is a welcome relief.

Very good overall. It's an unapologetic dessert beer with some complexity. I'd have it again without hesitation.

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Photo of HopHobo
3.4/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22oz. bottle poured into an imperial Guiness pint glass.

A-Pours a opaque black with a two finger white head that lingers until the second drink. No real lacing present on the glass. Carbonation appears a bit too high for this style.

S-Holy jeepers! Dessert in a bottle, smells sweeet! Butterscotch, vanilla, sugar and chocolate...not much roasted smell at all for a stout. Smells like a white russian, with way too much Kahlua.

T-Tastes like it smells, loads of butterscotch and vanilla flavor. Extremely sweet, lots a sugar taste. Very unique flavor and very pronounced

M-Thick, but not heavy. The mouthfeel really contributes to the flavor ecspecially the after taste. Very creamy reminds me of drink creamer for coffee.

D-I have never had a beer that tastes like this. It reminds me of melting vanilla ice cream into butterscotch brandy and cream. Super thick and sweet. A on par beer, but I don't think I could drink more than one. Definetely a good beer to share with 1 or 2 friends for dessert. Southern Tier does a good job with this series in bringing the flavors to the forefront, but its a bit much in this brew.

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Photo of inthebeeraisle
4.69/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle from The Hop & Vine. Surprised to still see some of the choice beers that they had around.

A: This is a relatively flat beer. The head dissipated quickly. A beautiful dark color that shows little light when held up to a lamp.

S: This beer smells like caramel, chocolate, vanilla, & whipped cream. Awesome!

T: Rich, smooth, "It's just like chocolate creme brulee" she said.

M: Yeah the mouthfeel is smooth. I kind of thought I already told you that.

D: This is the best beer that I have have from Southern Tier so far. I love the Black Water Series, but their other brews are also quite choice as well. I highly recommend this beer, but it does have a very high ABV.

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Photo of jefferz5000
4.22/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Recieved in a trade from Cuzco. Thanks buddy.

Pours a pretty oily black with a slowly developing creamy beige head.

As I begin to pour, the aroma makes a bold and sudden entrance into my life. Wow. The name is quite fitting, I can tell already. This thing is going to be sweet.

With my first sip, I immediately think to myself I am drinking dessert. I'm getting creamy buttery custard, lots of caramelized sugar, lots of vanilla and some roasty malt. I wasn't expecting this intensity, and I realize people weren't exaggerating when they say it's like a liquid creme brulee.

Feels pretty smooth in my mouth, kinda slick. Lightly tingly.

While I am digging the flavor and respect the intensity, this bomber is going to a bit of a feat to kill all by myself, however it will happen. I can see this beer being a great one to enjoy every now and then. Winter next to a warm fire might be a better setting for such a brew. I plan to revisit this in the future, maybe even near future.

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Photo of Cheeseboo
2.8/5  rDev -28.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Yuck. My nephew summed it up perfectly when he said that this tasted like drinking a melted candle. The taste is too sweet and syrupy and there is a horrible aftertaste that clings for a long time. I won't drink this again.

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Photo of BigAl723
4.35/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Ashley's in Ann Arbor.

A: Dark and pretty black. A heavy looking head that is real tan. It's about an inch and a half thick.

S: This is one of the most interesting smelling beers I've ever come across. If you've ever had a cup of flavored Creme Brulee coffee and liked it, you will be in heaven. Carmel, sweet sweet carmel.

T: Carmel and vanilla. There is not much "stout" flavor going on here. Mostly sweet flavors. I can't believe this is 10 percent.

M: Sweet carbonation. Medium feel.

D: Decent drinkability. Although I'm not 100 percent sure if I could drink a lot of this. The sweetness is just a little too much.

Overall it's a really good/unique beer. Sweet and sassy. Southern Tier continues to impress. They make some "out there" beers.

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Photo of stevenseg
4.52/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The Crème Brûlée Stout from the Southern Tier Brewing Company in Lakewood, New York comes in at 10% ABV.

The aroma hit me like a burning truck full of vanilla ice cream, but no sign of hops. Typical I would be critical of this, but this is supposed to be a sweat treat. Its sniffage is a pleasant mixture of vanilla and coffee, capped with a shot of Kahlúa, and lightly toasted.

This imperial stout is very dark in color, and the head is dense and velvety, which indicates that Guinness-like texture.

The beer list at Dirty Frank's, the joint I found this alcoholic cavity, appropriately states, "Drink your dessert," as this is virtually crème brûlée in a glass.

Served a little chilly at first (Southern Tier suggests 42 degrees in a snifter), let it warm as you sip to leave more taste and aroma at the bottom of the glass and experience its full flavor and the fire of alcohol that hits at the tail of every sip.

It's criticized for containing more sugar than hops, but this is not supposed to be a chugger. Instead, this stout is the brewers' version of ice wine or port. I would not drink another right after because it is just too rich and powerful. Instead I would cap off a dinner containing a rich cream sauce with just one pint or even split a 22oz. bottle. I can definitely feel my craving increase.

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Photo of RankRefugee88
3.94/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into glass.

A - Very nice and dark, very nice looking head, leaves lacing. Almost pitched black, but when held up to the light.

S - Coffee creamer is my first reaction. Reminds me of Saranac's Caramel Porter. Has the butterscotch, some vanilla, some caramel. Smells exceptional, almost like a Starbucks frappuccino. Very nice dark malts.

T - The aftertaste is the best. One of the sweetest tasting beers I've ever had. Still has the bitterness of coffee grains throughout, somehow. Mostly consists of vanilla, bits of caramel and bits of coffee beans.

M - Extremely dry, doesn't leave much residue in the mouth surprisingly. Smooth and creamy, but once it goes down it's almost like it was never there. No coating of the mouth, nothing.

D - Goes down pretty damn easy. Very smooth for a high percent beer.

Overall it was a good beer and I'd like to have it again some time. My friends raved about this beer and I really enjoyed it. It's not the greatest thing in the world but it suffices.

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Photo of krazyboi
4.26/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber into a globe glass.

A: Black, with a thin tan colored head that dissipates fairly quickly.
S: The aromas of sweet vanilla and caramel hit you right when you open the bottle. Amazing to say the least. Not much of a hoppy aroma. Smells like a great dessert beer.
T: A mix of vanilla, strong caramel, and a tad bit of bitterness from the hops.
M: Thick and sticky, medium carbonation.
D: This is a great imperial milk stout if you're into sweet beers. The taste and the aroma don't match up perfectly but it is still a great experience. I say you pick up a bottle of this and try it out!

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Photo of AdamAlway
3.88/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Jet black look with an off-white, medium thickness head that lingers all around the glass. The smell is very sweet, lots of butterscotch, vanilla and milk. Wow does that sweetness carry over into the taste, like a creme brulee milkshake. However, the somewhat overwhelming sweetness gives way to strong malt, coffee and dark chocolate bitterness. Medium body that is very smooth and creamy. Definitely supports my milkshake description.

Fair warning, this beer is all about sweetness. I'm not saying this is good or bad, but this is the first milk stout I've had that tastes exactly what you'd expect. Although I enjoyed it, if I wanted a milkshake that's what I would have purchased. It feels like the bitterness at the end was thrown in because they were worried you'd forget it is a beer. If you go into it wanting/expecting dessert, enjoy!

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Photo of jdaelhousen
4.64/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sticky pour produces minimal amount of head with a tan colored lace.

The smell of the beer is extremely sweet and dessert like, kind of like a souped up custard pie: notes of vanilla, toffee, nuts, carmelized sugar, and custard backed by a mild boozyness in the trailing nose.

At first sip, the sweetness of the chocolate, carmelized sugars and vanilla rise up on the palate. This sweetness continues well into the finish with a mild bitterness during the aftertaste. Flavors of chocolate, vanilla, & toffee linger on the palate for ages after the final swallow making this beer a delight. Unbelievable beer. Outstanding.

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Photo of Heritage02Rider
3.87/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had my first Milk stout this summer in Wis Dell, WI. So when I found STB had one, I made the ride to the brewery to try one. Low and behold there were no stouts on tap that day. Not being deterred, I bought a bottle of Crème Brûlée took it home and enjoyed.

While this is not one of the best milk stouts I have partaken in, it is good and worth a taste. I will have more when available.

A - translucent brown with light minimal creamy head.

S - First thing you notice is the unmistakable vanilla smell. It is rather overpowering, so there is little to no beer smell. (This is not necessarily a bad thing - just different)

T - sweet and strong. The milk (lactose) and vanilla bean adds a sweetness to the strong alcohol flavor with minimal stout flavor. After taste is vanilla for a moent and then it turns to stong alcohol after taste. (this can be a put off for some)

M - silky smooth and a bit bubbly for a stout

D - I had a 24oz bottle in one sitting. I would have had another if I could have, but I only bought the one. I would not drink this all night, but it is decent enough to have one or two.

Due to the high alcohol content you probably should use this as a primer for the rest of the partaking. I have no real idea of a food paring for something this string; perhaps a salty ham would be the best match.

Overall, I liked it, but price is a bit steep, yet I will most likely buy another.

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Photo of dino213aa
4.22/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours almost black. Totally opaque in the glass with slight deep ruby tinges when held against the light. Lacing is sparse and uneven. Right after a hearty pour, a 2mm mocha brown head forms which quickly dissipates.

S: Sweet, with strong vanilla and caramel notes and a whisper of bourbon.

T&M: Surprisingly crisp at first, first flavors are vanilla with a nose of bourbon. After a decent stretch it quickly flips to an artfully hoppy finish. The aftertaste is hoppy on the back of my palette and my lips tasting sweet. The mouthfeel is crisp yet hearty.. satisfying and while not overly muddy.

O: I'm honestly surprised at how much I like this. Although admittedly I'm not a connoisseur of stouts, this one has so much to offer. Not only is the novelty flavor apparent in such a rewarding way, but it still can give hopheads something to appreciate too. This brew is so skillfully balanced it's no surprise Southern Tier is quickly becoming one of my favorite breweries.

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Photo of mwill7287
4.44/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looked for Pumking at my local packie but they were out, so I went with this one instead. Poured from a 22oz. bomber into a snifter.

Appearance - Very dark, almost opaque, with just a bit of light breaking through when held up to a lamp. What little head there was even from a fairly vigorous pour evaporates quickly, leaving only thin tan lacing around the head. Carbonation pops through on the surface instead. This thin lacing also dissipates through the course of the drink to leave only an black oily substance behind. Virtually no lacing left behind on the glass. 4.25/5

Smell - Wow! Carmel and butterscotch pound the olfactory nerves. This is exciting. Smells like a very rich candy. Bits of chocolate in there but the carmel, butterscotch and vanilla totally dominate the nose. Sweet! 5/5

Taste - Sweet, sweet, sweet... dare I say, too sweet? I'm getting tons of carmel and butterscotch right off the bat. The latter half of the taste is more balanced, letting in the chocolates and coffees of the dark roast, as well as the added vanilla beans. Mi amigo Michael labeled it right: "vanilla latte." (Though I can't remember the last time I had a vanilla latte...) By the way, is there alcohol in this? The 9.6% of this brew is invisible. A carmel leading aftertaste lingers on the tongue. 4.25/5

Mouthfeel - Sticky and syrupy. The extreme sweetness of the carmel and butterscotch leaves an intense sensation on the tongue. Pure sugar. Midway through, my lips almost stick together, there's so much sweet residue left on them. 4/5

Overall - This is a beer you want to try for fun. And fun it is. Would I pick it up to enjoy on a regular basis? No; in fact, I can't see myself having it again for some time. But when I'm looking for something outside the box, this is the way to go. One will be more than enough, and indeed might be too much. Try splitting this with someone. 4.24/5

N.B., my ratings went down as the beer warmed; surprising, as the opposite usually happens. Keep it at that 42 degrees Southern Tier recommends as long as possible.

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Photo of Dennoman
1.62/5  rDev -58.8%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

22 oz bomber, poured into a snifter.

Before reading this review, please understand this is an extreme beer that *will* divide the crowd. I decided to write down notes and review it later, as I might have been too emotional on the night itself. I wanted to give it a more honest chance than just a 1.0 in every category and say it's the worst beer I've ever had. It's not, but boy is it close.

A: Okay, I suppose. Quite thin-looking with obvious reddish notes. Foamy, bubbly, soapy head.

S: WHOA-HOA-HOA! Absolutely horrendous. I think the best way to describe it, is the vanilla-scented candle from Hell. Huge waft of artificial vanilla essence with a vague hint of hops are all I get from this. For being so artificial, it's also surprisingly stale. It smells like the butterscotch and vanilla sweets your grandparents used to keep in the TV cabinet where temperatures would reach the upper eighties, together with their collection of rubber bands and potpourri. Sickening.

T: I suppose you could live with the smell if the taste was up to scratch, but sadly I was equally disappointed. The stench of rotten and chemical vanilla in your nose contradicts with the mostly hoppy flavors you get in your mouth at first, which is then washed away by booze to lead to a sandy dry finish. I don't know what this is supposed to be, but I sure as heck don't like it. Absolutely lip-curlingly vile.

M: I suppose this isn't over-carbonated and therefore has an okay mouthfeel, but this is sadly one of these numbers I have to fiddle around with to give it the low score I feel it deserves.

O: Knowing that a lot of people aren't big fans of Southern Tier's emulation style of brewing, I did rather like their Oat, Choklat and Mokah when I tried them. This however is just a swing and a miss for me. A big swing, I'll grant them that, and this is one of those beers that probably go well with people that have either an immense sweet tooth, or just... well... sorry, I can't begin to imagine how anyone could like this. That is - however - just my opinion, and I like the fact that Southern Tier either goes big or goes home. Big kudos on that!

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Creme Brulee (Imperial Milk Stout) from Southern Tier Brewing Company
3.93 out of 5 based on 4,484 ratings.
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