Fifteen | Weyerbacher Brewing Co.

227 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Weyerbacher Brewing Co.
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.80%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by elgiacomo on 06-15-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 227 | Ratings: 357
Photo of kylehay2004
3.87/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: 2 finger chocolate head, black in body

S: Roasty and fairly smokey for a stout. Coffee and mild chocolate notes

T: Incredibly smokey beer. Coffee is also big with this one. Roast, caramel and syrup notes are there but take a back seat to the smoke flavor. As others have said, it does get better as you drink.

M: thick bodied and moderate carbonation. This is a really oily beer.

Overall: Aroma is right on but the taste is a little over the top smokey. Not very drinkable for me.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.27/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to J2Brew2 for sending me this one.

Pours a motor oil thick pitch black with a 1 inch dark chocolate head. Nice patterning of lace on the glass on the drink down. One of the thickest and blackest beers I have ever seen. Smells of roasted malts, smoked wood, soy sauce, and cocoa powder. Reminds me of a campfire smell in a way. Very nice. Taste is very similar to the smell with roasted/smoky malt, bitter chocolate, muted coffee/espresso, and a hint of soy sauce (not as strong as the smell would indicate). This is a very tasty beer with the smoke flavors complementing the typical imperial stout richness of chocolate/coffee/espresso. Very thick in the mouth, which detracts a bit from the overall experience of the beer. Very full body that coats the mouth with each sip. Overall, I am very grateful for this extra and for the fact that I got to try this beer.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.8/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another year has gone by and Weyerbacher brings us a really nice Smoked Imperial Stout. Very good balance in this brew. Has a little bit of the smoked bacon saltiness to it, but it doesn't interfere with the brew at all. The color is very black and has a thin brown head that doesn't seem to leave a ton of lacing behind. The aromas of course are smoke, and roasted malts, perhaps even some early morning breakfast bacon. The smokiness in the flavor doesn't overpower the beer which is very good to me. There is still a strong burnt stout aftertaste that comes in on the back of the tongue. The mouthfeel is thick but not too much. Pretty good beer for sure. Get it while you can.

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Photo of metter98
4.01/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is essentially jet black in color - traces of red are visible near the edge of the glass when it is held up to a bright light. It poured with a thin dark brown head that quickly died down, leaving only a collar of large bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of smoke and dark malts are present in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and also has some hints of licorice. No bitterness is perceptible.
M: It feels medium-bodied and a little thick on the palate with a low to moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer is incredibly drinkable considering its strength because any traces of alcohol are well hidden from the taste.

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Photo of brentk56
4.15/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: A magnificently rich pour, with a light brown head settling atop the mysteriously dark brown liquid; nice retention and it leaves some shards of lace behind

Smell: Smoked wood, dark chocolate, licorice, burnt brown sugar and a hint of banana

Taste: The sweet dark malts hit the tastebuds first, bringing licorice and chocolate flavors, followed by the burnt brown sugar; in the middle, the smoked flavors take over, but don't overwhelm the palate; the fruity elements arrive, after the swallow, though the sweetness is restrained

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Overall: This beer has matured nicely, with the flavors blending together in a smooth and subtle fashion

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a nice dark brown foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma consists of light smoke and dry roasted malt with light notes of black chocolate. Taste is also a nice mix between some notes of smoke though not as dominant as expected with some dry roasted malt and some subtle chocolate notes. Body is quite full with a somewhat of a creamy texture and good carbonation with no apparent alcohol. Very tasty though I bet this would have been better had it been fresher with more smoke presence.

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.2/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Pours near black with a nice mocha head and a wee bit of lacing on the way down. Nose brings forward coffee, chocolate, roast, and a hefty amount of smoke. I really like how Weyerbacher's gotten the interaction between the smoke and the other flavors as opposed to a pure smoke bomb. Although, as far as smoked beers go, theirs is one of my favorites. Taste integrates the smoke even better and their is a very nice interplay between the smoke and the more traditional AIS flavors. Feel is nice and thick. Drinks really well and is one of my favorite Weyerbacher beers to date.

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Photo of mothman
4.09/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into duck rabbit snifter

Pours 1/2 finger of tan head that fades down. Color is pretty black.

Aroma: Big smoke flavors with roasted malts. Bacon flavors and chocolate. A slight chili pepper flavor. I really like this.

Taste: Chili peppers, smoked and roasted malts, chocolate. A pretty straight forward beer.

Mouthfeel: Smokey, spicy, and smooth. Medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends hot(spicy) , but fairly clean.

Overall, a nice smoked beer. I liked the chili flavors that I got out of this beer. Nice drinkability as well.

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Photo of nickfl
3.61/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours with one finger of medium brown foam on top of an opaque, black body. The head settles at a moderate pace and leaves very nice lace.

S - Lots of smoke with some coffee and molasses in the background.

T - Molasses, caramel, and coffee up front with strong smoke. The smoky character intensifies profoundly in the middle as peaty notes emerge with a spicy, phenolic character. The beer finishes with moderate bitterness and a touch of pine hop flavor as well as crushing, overwhelming smoke.

M - A moderately thick, somewhat oily body, average carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.

D - Well, they weren't kidding about the smoke on this one. It is very present in the aroma, but not unpleasantly so and even though it kind of smothers any other malt and sugar aroma notes this doesn't prepare you for just how strong it is going to be when you taste it. Drinking this beer is like being in a house fire, the smoke is overwhelmingly strong and very distinctly peat derived. Other flavors are very much secondary and while I got used to it after a few sips and actually began to enjoy the peat, it is still way too much. The spicy smoke character smothers the potential complexity of the other characteristics.

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Photo of oberon
4.22/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nice to see this new offering here in the triad so quickly.Poured into a nonic a deep jet black with a thinner but well retained deep mocha colored head,a great mix of smoke/hardwood and dark fruit in the nose,the alcohol sweetness shows thru but not real strong.Flavors of dark fruit and bitter chocolate hit home up front then the smoky notes come thru late making a well rounded impy stout.The smoke isnt over done but is just right,this is not as hot as alot of their other big offerings,real nice job here.

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Photo of superspak
4.62/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

12 ounce bottle into snifter. Pours thick opaque black color with a small, fairly dense 1 finger dark tan head with good retention, that reduces to a thin lacing cap that lasts. A small amount of lacing sticks to the glass as well. Aromas of big charcoal, oak, roasted malt, chocolate, vanilla, and a bit of coffee. Aromas of smoked meat were present as well as it warmed up. Very nice and strong aromas here. A lot of complexity. Taste of huge chocolate, caramel, smoke, coffee, vanilla, and tons of roasted malt. Lingering notes of bitter coffee, smoke, chocolate, and roasted flavors on the finish that last a while. Light carbonation and huge full body. The mouthfeel on this beer is heaven. Super creamy, smooth, and as drinkable as a beer of 11% could be. This beer is super rich, without being boozy at all. Alcohol is hidden perfectly in this, I am not really noticing any except for a slight warming on the finish. Overall, and absolutely incredible smoked imperial stout from Weyerbacher. I will be grabbing more if I see it around for sure.

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Photo of jlindros
3.95/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Gotta try one of these fresh before I age the rest.

A: A dark rich thick fluffy head pours 1 finger head that fades slowly over pitch black thick rich beer.

N: Nose is loaded with roasted malts, coffee, black patent malt, a touch of bakers chocolate, sweet malts, some caramel, slight hint of booze, and some slight earthy and spicy hops. Just the way a nice thick roasty imperial stout should be.

T: Starts with smoke actually, some smoked malts and a touch of smoked meats. Then some roasted malts, lots of roast with more coffee as well. Can't get that smoked meat out of the taste though, it just overpowers everything else and I'm trying to dig through to get the other flavors. Chewy malts, lots of dark malts with a little black patent. Some sweetness and caramel. SOme booze tastes as well, heat and even some spicy booze flavors, the alcohol def lets itself be known. I get a little earthy and spicy bitterness too from some hops, as well as the roasty malts. A little oatmeal taste as well, and def gives it a rich thick oatmeal feel to it.

M: Pretty thick and syrupy, boozy with a little spicy tingly and warming booze, and lower but decent carbonation.

F: FInishes still somewhat sweet and syrupy with a big coating all over the mouth. Then more boozy tastes with lingering spicy tingly feel and warmth. Lots of smoke also lingering with more smoked malts and smoked meat flavors. A little caramel and chocolate linger with lots more roast and coffee late on the finish.

A nice tasting beer, done well, a little too heavy on the smoke as it overpowers everything, and drinks really hot. THis should get better with age though.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Weyerbacher's Fifteenth Anniversary beer is a smoked Imperial stout.

It's about as black as a beer can be, and no light gets through it. The head is a dark, orange-accented brown. A rough pour will bring up a finger thick head that looks like a milkshake, but it won't hold. Nor is the lacing particularly great, but it does leave some nice spots and an initial craggy ring about the glass.

When raised to the nose you'll immediately smell the smokiness, but it's far from overwhelming and you'll quickly find much more chocolate and yeasty fruitiness (red berries). A wafted stitch of alcohol is present as well.

In the mouth it's quite viscous, delivering a very full body. The carbonation level is moderate, along the lines of a traditional English version, and that leaves it remarkably creamy and smooth across the palate.

The flavor delivers a quick nib of dark chocolate upfront, quickly followed by fruit, and it's like a chocolate covered cherry. I get lots of berries, and some dark-skinned fruit as well (mainly raisin). The smoke doesn't really make its way through as it would in a Schlenkerla, and it acts as more of a thread that runs through it, mainly emerging in the finish. As it warms and you work your way through it, more subtleties appear: black licorice / anise, some oak, cold black coffee, brown sugar, caramel, fudge, and charred firewood.

It's a rich and full beer, with a nice bit of complexity. The fruit and chocolate appear upfront, and it's bitter and smokey in the finish. Along the way quick notes of wood and sugar and spice add to its complexity. The alcohol is kept in check, and there's no dark malt acidity to it. Really, it's quite nice! This could easily have been way overblown, but they've really reigned it in to become a very drinkable, rich ale.

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Photo of dbrauneis
4.06/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear yet opaque jet black in color with some moderate amounts of garnet red + dark amber highlights and minimal amounts of visible carbonation. The beer has an extremely thin mocha head that quickly reduces to a very thin ring at the edges of the glass. Light amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Strong smokey aromas to this beer, similar to a campfire. Lighter aromas of roasted malts and just a hint of brown sugar.

T: Upfront there a light to moderate flavors of roasted malts with some honey and brown sugar sweetness. Then there are moderate flavors of smokiness with a hint of peat. Light notes of milk chocolate as well.

M: Just shy of full bodied with light to moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly sticky with a light amount of dryness in the finish.

O: This beer is really thick, it even seems thick when it is being poured. The alcohol is extremely well hidden in this beer, I would never have guessed that it is 10.8% ABV - it is much easier to drink than that. Enjoyable with the smokey flavors and aromas but not over the top or dominating.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.08/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle - $3.79 at Hop City in Atlanta, Georgia.

Appearance: Slips out of the bottle a black, opaque body with a tall, stately-looking, tan head.

Smell: Roasty, tar-toned maltiness of Italian Roast coffee, black licorice candy, softened dark chocolate squares, dark fruits, freshly-ground pepper and, ah, there it is, there's the promised smokiness lurking in the background.

Taste: Sweet, burnt dark Muscovado sugar-flecked roasted malts with a robust flavor of bitter chocolate, cold espresso, caramel, and even a snippet of fire-charred licorice, Fruitiness tasting of prunes and red currants. Given a moment to warm, the smokiness provides for a touch of smoked salt-cured meats. Underlying spiciness. Earthy, roasty bitterness embodies the middle as summer sausage and chocolate fudge closes out things for the finish with a lingering roastiness and hint of hidden alcoholic heat.

Mouthfeel: Approaching a full mouthfeel, it's fairly weighty on the tongue with a slight, noted stickiness. Medium-light carbonation.

Drinkability: Fifteen is simply a solid, sweet-leaning imperial stout. The smoked malt, instead of being an over-the-top character, is merely a pleasant, well-integrated feature of the beer.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

black and evil looking from the start. A small but quickly fleeting head of light tan rises up from the bottom of the glass and sits on top for a brief moment before settling back down again. Aroma is burnt, smoked, and peaty, however you want to say it, wow. Dark leather and tobacco, smoked malts, rich, dark chocolate notes. Immense aroma of charred wood. Holy crap this is a beast. Warming brings out subtle vanilla, but barely as the bulk of this is just tremendous smoke. Each sip is rich, again seeped in smoked malts and rich campfire like tones. Smoked wood dominates as does subtle sweet notes of honey, light touches of vanilla and a rich leather and tobacco finish.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.9/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I picked this up at Quick six, poured chilled from the 12oz into a tumbler.

An opaque black colored beverage with thick rocky medium reddish brown cap. The lace is thick and bead is tight. The smell has a nice level of complexity with fruity yeast and smokey odors which don't overwhelm the cocoa in the malt and slight woody scent like cedar possibly from the smoked malt or hops. The feel is mildly smoked with lots of caramel and mild carbonation w/ gentle bitterness and the alcohol seems light while the body is relatively full.

The flavor of Fifteen is good w/ a little more sweetness than I like, but a nice caramel flavor anyway with some cocoa and smoke accents w/ a slight woodiness and alcohol in the taste. The mild coffee-like flavor comes off sort of like french roast based on the smoke in the malt w/ some dark fruit sweetness as it finishes. I enjoyed this even if it was a little all over the map. Enough smoke to notice it, but not dominate or go too far over the top. I think even with some age it has pretty high drinkability -I would have possibly enjoyed this more fresh.

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Photo of billab914
4.12/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Dogfish snifter. It poured black in color with a frothy and tan head rising half an inch above the beer. The head retreated to the edges of the glass and left some nice lacing as I drank it.

The aroma shows some nice campfire like smoky flavors to it. I get some chocolate and brown sugar sweetness along with some coffee like roastedness coming through. Very rich, flavorful and complex aroma to it overall.

The taste has a very nice smokiness to it throughout the flavor. I get some brown sugar, dark chocolate and molasses to it that helps smooth out all the bitter, roasty, burnt and smoky flavors. Very nice smoky flavor to it overall.

The mouthfeel is on the heavier side with carbonation being below average. Drinkability is good, I especially enjoyed the smokiness to it. Very flavorful and tasty beer overall and a very nice smoked beer in general.

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Photo of smcolw
3.17/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Light head; dark beige color. Near black color--no light shines through.

Dark chocolate, milk and a touch of coffee make up the aroma of this brew.

Spicy and bitter flavors--very complex. There's burnt malt flavor and some powerful hop, particularly in the swallow. Alcohol is notable in swallow as well. Predictably good body and carbonation. One negative: strong band-aid tastes of chlorophenol; shows up in the aftertaste. This turns out to be a fatal flaw.

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Photo of womencantsail
2.75/5  rDev -31.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Thanks to both Mikey and Brandon for sending me bottles of this.

A: The pour is a semi-viscous black color with a sturdy tan head.

S: The nose is certainly full of smoke along with roasted malts and chocolate. The smoke gives off hints of meatiness and there is a fair amount of alcohol as well (seems to be a trend with some of these Weyerbacher anniversary beers).

T: Upon tasting this beer, I couldn't help but think: smoked salmon. Slightly salty, meaty, and a bit of a sea/fishy flavor that you might notice on a piece of smoked salmon.

M: The body is medium and sort of chalky/astringent with a low carbonation.

D: I like smoked salmon, but not in liquid form. It seems like way too many breweries overdo the smoked malts in a smoked beer. Subtlety helps, especially with such a powerful flavor.

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Photo of TMoney2591
4.12/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

I'm glad I was able to find and snag a bottle o' this before I escaped from NoVa. It pours a blisteredly opaque black-brown topped by a mild fraction of a finger of ecru foam. The nose comprises thoroughly roasted malts, molasses, dark smoke, maple syrup, and brown sugar, all the things that usually make for goodness (especially considering the smoke ain't exactly overwhelming). The taste takes the smoke and lightly smatters it across the other aspects above, thus spreading it out thinner than an unsuspecting front line against Frederick the Great's oblique order (look it up). It's still pretty tasty, but things could have been cleaned up a bit, I think. The body is a hefty medium, with a light carbonation and a fairly dry finish. Overall, a nice smoked stout, though I think I had my expectations set a bit too high as this thing fell just a hair short thereof.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.8/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

a - Pours a very dark brown with half an inch of tan head and light carbonation evident.

s - Smells very smokey, and of roasted malts, toasted malts, and a hint of chocolate.

t - Tastes very smokey, and of dark fruits, roasted malts, and a hint of alcohol. No chocolate in the taste.

m - Medium to full body and low carbonation.

d - A nice smoked stout. Would have liked a little more from the taste, but pretty good overall. Glad I got to try it and would try again.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.77/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottled poured into a goblet.

Appearance - Not quite jet black body with a wee bit of a tan colored head. It fades quickly leaving just a bit of lacing.

Smell - Strong roasted malt flavor with some smoke. It smells like coffee and Islay scotch. The flavors complement each other well in the nose.

Taste - I don't think the smoke plays well here. The flavor is immediately a strong bitter chocolate flavor. The bitterness is augmented by the hops (is this not an RIS?). The smoke just adds to the bitterness. It comes off as unbalanced.

Mouthfeel - Nice body to it. A bit chewy, which is surprising since it doesn't have a lot of sweetness to it at all. Medium carbonation. Feels like a 10.8% stout, as it should.

Overall - Not a bad stout, just very very bitter. No cloying sweetness here. I've never had a smoked beer before and given this, I'd be interested to try other examples of it.

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Photo of stakem
4.22/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Als of Hampden served in a nonic. This brew appears black in color with a dark tan cap that leaves fingers of lacework and a webbing pattern on the glass. A thin film maintains across the top of the brew.

The smell of this offering is that of dark grains with some smoke character that is lightly pete'd. Under the smoked aspect, more of the dark maltiness comes through smell like chocolate ad coffee with a bit of a sweetness about it. A light amount of fruity alcohol is present in the very back.

The taste of the brew is a little more dark and fruity than I was expecting. Plenty of alcohol is evident with smoked grain, chocolate and coffee notes. There is a very pleasant taste emerging with each sip that tastes strikingly similar to toasted marshmallows, where did that come from? Who cares, it's quite pleasant. The aftertaste is lightly musty with more hints towards the fruity alcohol inclusion coupled with hops.

This is a medium to full bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It includes a vibrant amount of fruity alcohol character that I could do without but this regardless is a very enjoyable, easy drinking brew.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.4/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Funny story on this brew, I had bought one back when it was released, but I never got to try it. Came home from work one night, wife was getting ready to go out with her girlfriends. "Honey I drank one of your beers from downstairs, I hope it wasn't anything special". The funny part she actually liked her 11% alcohol pregame beer, and don't worry she wasn't driving. This one pours pitch black with a deep mocha tan head, fine even scattered lacing, great looking brew. Aromatics has hints of dark roasted coffee, and dark chocolate super sweet underlying fruitiness with a background of smoke malts and herbal hops. Flavor lays it on with dark roasted malts, deep sense of smoked malts, acidic coffee like action with fruit driven flavors a blend of ripened dark fruits and berry flavors. The keep working toward perfection in this big luscious dark ales like in the 13th Annivesary and then their big bottle special release called Tiny. Excellent blends the fruit/smoke/dark chocolate/coffee accents so well, easy to drink. Mouthfeel is fuller bodied not cloying carbonation is mellow very smooth going down there's a good bit of acidity laying on the palate. Drinkability is very nice, a beer that needs to make it into their special release rotations, I tried the Double Simcoe as a one time release now it's year round. It could happen this beers is amazing everybody jump on the bandwagon.

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Fifteen from Weyerbacher Brewing Co.
4.03 out of 5 based on 357 ratings.
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