Heresy | Weyerbacher Brewing Co.

Liked This Beer
3.94 w/ 2,258 ratings

Brewed by:
Weyerbacher Brewing Co.
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
We take our Old Heathen and age it in oak bourbon barrels. The result is our silky smooth Heresy, 8% ABV. The aroma is filled with vanilla, cocoa and roasted coffee. Notes of oak, whiskey, roasted barley and vanilla dance across your taste buds.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 06-21-2004

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,258 |  Reviews: 1,012
Photo of ThePorterSorter
3.95/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours jet black with a thin, sticky tan head that fades quickly. The beer's nose is a thick, syrupy sweetness underwritten by a subtle vanilla and biting alcohol. Strangely I am remind of pancakes & maple syrup when I take a deep whiff. The taste is much the same with a big roasty stout body, subtle vanilla and a molasses, lingering sweetness.
The beer is not as full-bodied as I would have preferred, and the taste doesn't coat my palate as expected. I believe it's slightly over-carbonated as well.
This beer is great and definitely a sipper. The vanilla (without being barrel aged) is an interesting contrast to a beer that's normally defined by bold notes of coffee and chocolate. Worth trying, especially to support a great "local" brewery such as weyerbacher.

 777 characters

Photo of ncstateplaya
3.25/5  rDev -17.5%

Photo of julian89
3.3/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from bottle into pint glass.

Appearance- What a great looking beer. Dark chocolate brown with a tan head and creamy lacing. The viscosity is in-between lager and molasses.

Smell- Smoked wood, chocolate, and the barrel aging in oak (a lil' whiskey smell).

Taste- This is where I wasn't surprised. I didn't age my bottle like I see some people do. I've had substantially better RIS before. This one was not as balanced as the smell should suggest. The alcohol was very strong and the maltiness overtook much of the other flavors. It's almost like a light dark malt whiskey rather than a beer. I was looking for a little more of a smooth earthy boldness of a beer.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Medium body and carbonation. Overall it's okay to drink but I have several far better alternatives, maybe I'll return to later, or better yet try on draft if I can ever find it.

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Photo of xxcarpxx
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of Immortale25
3.89/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a pint glass. No freshness date.

A- Pours an intensely opaque black color with an 1/8 inch dark tan head that immediately subsides to a thin ring around the edge of the glass and minimal surface foam. Lacing is decent with a mostly full and resilient sliver on the glass.

S- Incredibly roasty and a bit boozy bringing bourbon to mind. A bit sweet but mainly a dark chocolate note prevails and a little bit of raisin.

T- Surprisingly smooth given the heavy nose. Deeply roasted malts plus oak at first and then a wash of metallic flavor but with a chocolate aftertaste. Notes of coffee and molasses as well as plenty of wood and more bourbon. In the end, it's just malt pounding down on the palate, which is OK if you're into some darkness.

M- Dry and biting. Medium-low carbonation and a massive body. Probably my least favorite part about the beer.

O- I liked this better when I had it on tap. I think I'm gonna cellar my last bottle to see if some age can do it justice.

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Photo of SawDog505
3.48/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a 20 oz Duvel Tulip. Pours a very dark brown, with a two inch tan head, leaves minimal lacing. Smell is bourbon, vanilla, oak, chocolate, figs, molasses, and roasted coffee. Taste is very similar, but less bourbon than the nose would have you expect. Body is thinner than my favorites, not much carbonation, not overly dry, and drinkable for what it is. This is a nice, wanted more out of it for sure.

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Photo of YouSkeete
3.74/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very dark brown with a black appearance, frothy mocha-colored head with nice retention. Lots of really dark aromas like licorice, wood, molasses and roasted malts with some touch of white chocolate and black cherries. Big punch of bitter chocolate, coffee grinds, dried wood chips, anise and vanilla on the first sip. While the chocolate and cacao bitterness and wood flavor lingers, the malty body turns flatter and less malty. Medium sized overall body with a sticky, creamy mouthfeel, slightly carbonated. Just above average in my opinion.

 542 characters

Photo of st9647v3
4/5  rDev +1.5%

Photo of Ryanc23
3/5  rDev -23.9%

Photo of axeman9182
3.63/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle courtesy of Kadonny. It was allowed to warm before being poured into my petite Duvel tulip.

Weyerbacher Heresy pours a solid black, with three or so fingers of tan foam. Head retention is decent and lacing is just a little bit spotty. The nose is a little quiet for a big beer, but it is heavy on star anise, with a bit of vanilla-sweetened chocolate as well. Licorice, a flavor I'm only really happy to see in small doses in a stout, is still the star of the show. Sweet milk chocolate and vanilla are what jump out next. Oak and bourbon come in to bring something new to the table for the close. The body has a nice creamy edge to it, but it's relatively low ABV for the style corresponds to a mouthfeel that's not quite as full as a lot of its counterparts. The carbonation is spot on though, namely subtle and out of the way. Weyerbacher Heresy is one of the more cost friendly, relatively available barrel aged imperial stouts out there, and it's a great value buy. That said, it's not going to wow you though way some great stouts will.

 1,056 characters

Photo of brutalist
4.25/5  rDev +7.9%

Photo of Snellgg5
4.75/5  rDev +20.6%

Photo of yamar68
3.83/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an inky brown/black with minimal clarity. A vigorous pour summoned a finger of medium brown, stubborn head. Thick lacing.

The nose is pretty massive - milk chocolate, Swiss Miss, smooth vanilla, some faint dark fruits, hints of hardwood, smells wet.

Taste is milky, various chocolate notes, not much of a bite from either the barrel or the booze. Rather tame. Pretty approachable as far as big stouts go.

Overall, this is a solid beer. Not really something that I'd seek out, but a great intro to the genre.

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Photo of thecheapies
4.07/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

First time around on Weyerbacher Heresy, but I've had one in the cellar for a couple of months or so.

Bottle date 01/20/11; poured into a snifter.

Poured a very dark brown from the bottle, but sits black as night in the glass. Towering four-fingered head of cacao color is slowly settling to reasonable height. No lacing to speak of. Bubbles sparkle as they pop. Nice-looking beer.

Tingly bourbon is up-m'fing-front. Notes of chocolate, peat, well-done steak char, creme caramel (Cow Tales candy), bing cherries, and vanilla. Bourbon-forward much. Still very appealing for a giant stout such as this.

Woah, buddy! Sweet roasty malts, soft chocolate, Cow Tales, peaty smoke, and just the light touch of corn whiskey heat. Really mellow barrel-aging in the taste profile, which is a delight (at least for how strong the aroma of it was). A slight earthy hop is pulling through with dark pastel green tones. Letting it warm up pulls out a nice bitter oaky wood character that is smooth and birch-y and delicious. Maybe it was the year-and-change that this has been sitting around, but this is drinking phenomenally right about now.

A bit thin for the style, but that doesn't particularly let much alcohol creep up. Carbonation is medium-light, where it should be. But, that body is a stale medium. Average feel for an impy.

I'm pretty sure this one's been around for awhile. Perhaps, one of the front-runners/pioneers of the style. It's well-done and very enjoyable. The one in my cellar is the same age. Might have to pull it out sooner rather than later. Recommended.

 1,573 characters

Photo of Evan
4.5/5  rDev +14.2%

Photo of pavpav12
3/5  rDev -23.9%

Photo of jsnoek
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of Archemedies
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%

Photo of Boitnott
4/5  rDev +1.5%

Photo of vonnegut21
4.25/5  rDev +7.9%

Photo of BrewtalAlement
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of TrappistJohnMD
3.95/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours very dark brown, almost black, into a tulip. Tan head that dissipates quickly.

Smell is of sweet chocolate and toasted malt. Vanilla and toffee are present too. There is strong alcohol smell as well.

Taste is rich with chocolate and sweet toasted malts. Vanilla, caramel and coffee are present too. Good bit of alcohol presence and mild bitterness.

Mouthfeel is creamy with average carbonation.

Overall this was better than I expected. Too heavy on the alcohol smell and taste for me, though.

 502 characters

Photo of olympicgatorade
4.75/5  rDev +20.6%

Photo of DCgolfpro
4.25/5  rDev +7.9%

Photo of Hopdaemon39
3.48/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a tulip- pours a very thick black with a 1.5 finger mocha brown head. Recedes quickly to a thin layer of foam and a little lacing.

Smell is definitely boozy- also very concentrated dark malt sweetness and some cocoa and a little wood.

Tastes like a Russian Imperial Stout- lots of dark malt, some mocha and booze at the finish, which is long and semi-sweet. Good but like a previous BA said, nothing special in a very densely populated field.

Mouthfeel is fine- booze is definitely very present which detracts from an otherwise good mouthfeel; full bodied, moderately carbonated. I got this bottle for 2.45 which is great but I probably wouldn't buy more than a small bottle of this.

 719 characters

Heresy from Weyerbacher Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 78.7% out of 100 with 2,258 ratings
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