Sloth - Belgian-Style Imperial Stout | Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

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Sloth - Belgian-Style Imperial StoutSloth - Belgian-Style Imperial Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
Alaska, United States
midnightsunbrewing.com

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
SLOTH Belgian-style Imperial Stout is deliberately dark as hell. The pour is slow and sluggish. Its head is menacing, becoming torn and tattered Belgian lace on the sides of the glass as you cautiously consume this brew—sip by insidious sip.

The aroma is sweet from heavy malt and big alcohol with notes of vanilla, coconut and whiskey from the oak. The depth & breadth of roasted malt flavors loiters on the palate while the robust finish lingers, well, forever.

20 IBU

Added by beersabound on 11-03-2007

BEER STATS
Ratings:
116
Reviews:
59
Avg:
4.38
pDev:
8.45%
 
 
Wants:
356
Gots:
18
For Trade:
5
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 116 |  Reviews: 59
Photo of sprucetip
4.6/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I dug into my notes from summertime when I am too busy to enter reviews and chose one of my favorites for review number 400 (with #420 just around the corner, but that's off topic)! Another 50 or so and I'd have something close to 10% of Buckeynation. Good thing this isn't a race or a competition. Not just quantity, but quality, because Buckeye's reviews are phenomenal and inspiring. Mine are pretty bland in comparison.

Sloth was my favorite of the 2007 Seven Deadly Sins Series, and I went as Sloth to a Midnight Sun New Year's Eve party that year, and came in runner up for the first prize of the 7 brews of the 7DS collection. So close! But not quite. But the guy who won gave me the Sloth bottle. Gluttony, I think he was. But I bought a bunch too, and I just gave one to Buckeye, and there is one more in the cellar doing time, possibly past it's prime? I'm told I could get a lot of beer for it, but I will consume it with friends at some point.

The pour produced a densely black fluid with thick head that was darker than mocha, and it hung around for a while. It was very active, and left scraps of patchy lacing.

The smell was chocolaty, mildly roasty, star anise/licorice, modestly boozy, and malty sweet. It all blends together very nicely, with just a wee bit of musky funky Belgian yeasty character.

Taste followed the nose with rich malty sweetness, medium roast, star anise, noticeable alcohol, and mild roasty and/or hoppy bitterness.

Low to medium carbonation, very rich and full body, chewy thick viscosity, and somehow a clean finish.

Very flavorful, pleasantly textured, balanced and complex sipper. I lobbied the folks at Midnight Sun to make it again, but I didn't get the impression that it was in the plans. They reminded me of the Berzerker that is released each fall.... But who knows, maybe now that they've got 4x the capacity, they'll crank out another batch someday.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.59/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Bottle purchased at Oliver's Beverage in Albany, NY. 2016 vintage.

This one pours a very dark black, with a half inch mocha-colored head, and a good amount of lacing.

Smells wonderful, lots of dark fruit, raisins, and chocolate, little bit of yeastiness, chocolate, heavy bourbon, and oak.

Midnight Sun really does know how to barrel-age the hell out of a beer. This pretty sweet up front, bourbon, and lots of dark fruit, the "Belgian-style" part of the stout. There's a bit of port flavor, even though it's not aged in port barrels. The finish brings vanilla, spicy bitter oak, and heavy duty roasted malt, for a long lingering finish. The complexity on this one is really nice.

This is medium bodied, not super, super thick, but thick enough, with a creamy mouthfeel and a normal level of carbonation.

Midnight Sun continues to wow me with its barrel program here. A pretty exquisite take on the style.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.58/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A million thank you's to Adam for sending me a hand bottled growler of this rarity. About 4 days old. Poured into a Blue Point Snifter.

A: Growler opens with a muted hiss... a good sign! Pours a single layer of bubbles on top of a black-as-night beer. Lacing is non-existant.

S: Nose is of pure ethanol, sweet soy sauce, and the slightest hint of sun dried prunes in the background.

T: Grapes, prunes, chocolate, fudge, sweet soy sauce, all engulfed by a noticeable, yet mellow alcoholic cover. Not hot in the least. Subtly sweet and oily towards the end with the dark fruit fading out and a slightly roasty, milk chocolate flavor fading in. Finish is chewy brownie. Aftertaste is a brownie sweetness that coats the palate.

M: Medium to full bodied, ever-so-slightly carbonated, and probably the smoothest and easiest drinking beer that I have ever tasted or will ever taste. Slides down the gullet while caressing my throat. Silky smooth doesn't even begin to describe this one. Finish is messy and aftertaste lingers.

D: Not the most complex RIS in the world but by God, probably the tastiest. I'd give this one a 6 on taste and feel if I could. So easy to drink despite the high ABV since its so friggin smooth! Despite the hype, this beer is far far underrated in my opinion. Well worth acquiring.

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Photo of hopdog
4.58/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to TomDecapolis for sharing this 22oz bottle.

Poured a dark black (it just doesn't get darker than this) with an averaged sized brown head. Aromas of dark fruits, oak, wood, vanilla, brown sugar, molasses, smoke, and chocolate. Tastes of dark fruits, oak, coffee, chocolate, vanilla, and roasty. Full and creamy body. Damn this was good.

Notes from and tasted on 2/1/08

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Photo of tpd975
4.57/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to timmcd for sending me this one.

A: Pours a nice dark black with a small tan head. No real retention or lace.

S: Aromas of deeply roasted malt, coffee, chocolate, coconut, and vanilla. Mild woody notes with an alcoholic kick.

T: Very much like the aroma. Wonderful bold flavors. Nice roast with a coconut macaroon like sweetness. Chocolate and coffee are there in a big way with some vanilla and barrel notes. Hints of raisin and a bit of booze round things out.

M: Medium in body, smooth and tasty.

D: Very good, really liked this beer.

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Photo of Tunic
4.55/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of TheBlackMallard
4.55/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks again Frank!

Poured black with a small mocha head into a snifter.

Smell: Chocolate, Coffee, Alcohol, Roasted Barley, and some Fruits.

Taste: Amazing! Rich Chocolate, it reminds me of cake batter with hints of coffee underneath. Silky, thick, and smooth.

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Photo of Damian
4.53/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Drank from a 22 fl.oz.•1 pt 6 fl.oz. bottle purchased at DeLaurenti Specialty Food & Wine, Seattle, WA
1/7/16
Served in a snifter

Review #1325

Super oily and viscous, absolute pitch black appeareace. The shimmery liquid was topped by a barely-there film of burnt sienna colored bubbles. Bit of patchy lacing along the glass.

The aroma was mind blowingly good. Incredibly rich and robust. Loads of fragrant bourbon. Boozy but not at all hot. There was a noticeable oxidized quality that made me think of port perhaps too. Strong vanilla notes. Super malty and sweet. A bit tart. Intense dark fruit notes. Raisins and currants dominated. Good amount of brown sugar too. Touch of roast.

The flavor profile was very similar to the nose but not quite as smooth or as intense. Loads of roasted and caramel malts on the front end. Brown sugar was also noticeable. Strong dark fruit notes in the center. Good dose of fruity tartness and port-like booziness. Charred raisins and currants came through strong. Some espresso too. Roasted malts appeared again on the back end. Hint of char. Big, boozy, whiskey-like notes lingered in the finish. Perhaps a touch hot for my liking.

The mouthfeel was the only somewhat disappointing aspect of this beer. It was lighter bodied for the style and initially contained a fairly aggressive, larger bubbled effervescence. Somewhat airy on the palate. The carbonation settled with time and the liquid turned smooth and creamy.

Despite the fact that I picked up absolutely no Belgian-like characteristics, Sloth was still an incredibly rich, interesting and complex imperial stout. Beers with barrel notes this big typically are slow sippers, but this drank remarkably well. If I had a few more bottles, I would love to revisit them in time and see if the oxidative notes intensify.

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Photo of waltersrj
4.53/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Original bottling (2008 I believe).

Thanks to Dan's tasting and a great BA for sharing at our 2011 Impy stout tasting.

Nose: Fig, raisin, Belgian yeast, dark roasted malts, charred ash, oak, slight whiskey vanilla and oak and a good amount of chocolate and possibly cherry cordial.

Taste: Fantastic roasted malts and Belgian yeast/spice, chocolate, cherry cordial, vanilla, oak and whiskey.

Mouthfeel: Amazingly velvety smooth, this is one of the best creamy and velvety mouthfeels I've ever had.

Overall: Amazing and they better make this again as I've heard it's currently barrel aging.

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Photo of beerceller99
4.52/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Diesel oil black with a fleeting brown head. Heavenly aromas of roasty malts with oak vanilla, licorice. Rich, hearty flavor is a perfect mix of dry roasty malts with sweet molasses, rich chocolate and vanilla. The barrel aging effect is damn near perfect here. Nice oak wood notes. One of the best barrel aged stouts I've had. Awesome, and a big shout out to the guys for the opportunity.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.5/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

So here we are on night number six of the seven deadly sins series. Again big ups to Frank for getting me this. After sitting in the cellar for a better part of year, I brought this gem out last night and served it in an oversized wine glass. Consumed on 07/20/2008.

Poured this one vigoursly into the glass. A rich, deep, and dark looking liquid then unfolded here. A copious amount of tan colored foam then rose up from the bottom, reaching around three fingers in height before setting down to a nice crown that clung to the sides and left copious amounts of lace up and down the glass.

Rich decadent smell here. The first notes of chocolate and molasses were coming through very nicely. Hints of some dark fruit, figs perhaps bouncing around along with a nice touch of spice and a good hint of what seemed to be bourbon or something along those lines. Awesome smell, and really just got me going for this one. The flavor was just about right. Rich chocolate notes layered on top of a solid base of coffee and roasted malts. Nice solid, smooth feel, with great carbonation and a silk like profile. Deep resonant toasted feeling on this one. Really a quality stout here. Hints of dark fruit as it warms now, with touches of raisins starting to come through. This was a definite sipper, as it was strong, and you know it, but it was delightful for a nightcap and I had no issue with trying to put this one down.

Overall a very solid stout here, and a damn fine addition to this lineup. I would have no issue at all with getting a few of these to put down, as they are just that good. Another solid offering from Midnight sun!

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Photo of largadeer
4.5/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of spycow
4.5/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of twelveinches
4.5/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of t0rin0
4.5/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of tmoneyba
4.5/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured black color with an average creamy light brown head that mostly lasted with good lacing. Heavy toasted chocolate, wood with a small alcohol aroma. Median to full body with a creamy texture and flat carbonation. Medium to heavy toasted sweet chocolate malt flavor with a heavy bittersweet finish of long duration. This is a standout beer.

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Photo of womencantsail
4.47/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Tried this previously, but sampled again at Saturday's MS Sins tasting. A clear memory of the beer makes for a much better review...

A: The pour is nearly flat, thick, and black as night. Essentially no head with a few scattered bubbles.

S: Tons of sweet milk chocolate, whiskey, vanilla, and just a hint of coffee. As it warms up, a touch of figs, raisins, and miscellaneous dark fruits.

T: The flavor of this beer is just so smooth and rich. The whiskey and vanilla come through strongly and give way to sweet chocolate, and a hint of coffee. The oak makes itself known at times, and there are some dark stone fruit flavors on the back end.

M: Really exceptional in terms of the feel. Nice and smooth, creamy, and full bodied.

D: An absolutely fantastic beer all around. I wish I had a bottle of this because I've thoroughly enjoyed my few samples of this.

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Photo of Sean9689
4.47/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Tick #350!

22oz bomber.

A - Pours black, no head, thing ring around the glass.

S - Chocolate, coffee beams, cream, slightly bitter, nice roasty notes. Very solid, but coming from MS, it doesn't surprise me.

T - Bitter dark chocolate, creamy rich chocolate, roasty notes, vanilla sweetness, and some oak. So rich and decadent, so f'n good.

M - Full, slick, rich, smooth, bitter finish.

D - Awesome. So good. MS comes through yet again with another winner. Not a whole lot of Belgian characteristics, but who gives a crap, it's good.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.47/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Thorpe at a recent tasting, thank you very much Thorpe, this is a top want for me. At the time of this review, this is #13 on the "Top Beers - Russian Imperial Stout" list on beeradvocate.com. Served in a snifter.

Beer is black and oily, thick with a nice thin head of small bubbles, minimal retention, lacing, and all of that.

Aroma is sweet, liquor, mild anise almost, interesting, a smells awesome.

This was the winner of the night for me. It is incredible. Thick and fudgy with a nice liquor and alcohol notes. I really enjoyed it and would have it again for sure.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.47/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Joe for providing this one at the pre-NotLA/"Alex is done his dissertation" party. Served in a Word Class Beverages taster glass.

A - Pours a pitch black without a hint of color - although when held up to the light it teases with some reddish transparency. Pours with two fingers of dark mocha foam that settles to a thin cap and thicker collar, minimal lace.

S - Smokey, roasty, Belgian yeast, dark fruits, molasses, and a bit of woodiness. I thought this wasn't barrel-aged, but it confused me, with the notes of vanilla and coconut peaking through. After consulting Midnight Sun's website, I learned it is indeed aged in whiskey oak of some sort.

T - Intense roast and dark chocolate, dark fruits, chocolate, and anise. Alcohol is very well-hidden. Finish is very tannic and smokey, with tons of residual roasty bitterness. Not as complex as the nose.

M - Slick, oily, thick body - it's not Dark Lord, but it's still pretty viscous. Quite low carbonation, The finish is dry and woody. Perfect for the style.

D - It'd be hard to kill 22oz on my own, but I could split this two ways with someone. It reminds me of the good batches of Black Albert, but with some light barrel-aging notes (and none of the funk of Cuvee Delphine).

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.47/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Thoroe429. Thanks Mike!

The beer is near black and appears viscous and oily. Minimal beige head. The aroma brings roast, oak, lightly sweet. Mild smoke in the aroma with a delicate warming alcohol finish. Relatively full bodied and palate coating. An outstanding example of the style.

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Photo of lupercmda
4.46/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep dark black with minimal head. Tastes is dark roasted chocolate with mild belgian yeast character. Some candy sugar notes but it is minimal. Overall a very good stout.

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Photo of Thirstygoat
4.46/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.41/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Midnight Sun right now! Are you kidding me! I am so glad to try this one.

A - Servered in a 12 oz goblet. A very dark brown, but not as black as some other stouts. A nice dark tan head forms and slowly fades to a few bubbles around the edges.

S - Chocolate really is strong here. I don't really get much else. Maybe I am rushing here.

T - A sweet dark chocolate with hints of oak and coffee. Sweeter than I was expecting.

D - Good carbonation and body for the style.

O - A real treat to have this on tap. A sweet Belgian style stout. I really savored and enjoyed this one.

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Photo of Deuane
4.4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Gorgeous inky black with a lovely thick chocolate colored head. Globs of lacing in the glass.

S-Although only slightly diminished this brew smells very similar to Kate the Great. Chocolate, licorice and smoke in the back. Alcohol warming with a bit of coffee in the background. Amazing how close they are to each other.

T-Leather, chocolate, dark friut, coffee...WOW! This is KTG, jr. Nice dark roasty finish.

M-This is the only thing lacking from this beer. I would say medium body leaning towards medium-heavy...but it just seemed off. I would have expected a more chewy mouth from a beer in this realm.

D-Top notch stuff, really nice. The only fault is the mouth which is a bit disappointing. Otherwise hard to beat. I really was sad to empty the bottle!

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Sloth - Belgian-Style Imperial Stout from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
4.38 out of 5 based on 116 ratings.
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