Heavy Imperial Stout
Frost Beer Works

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American Imperial Stout
Ranked #1,580
Ranked #8,911
4.06 | pDev: 6.4%
Frost Beer Works
Vermont, United States
Reviews: 12 | Ratings: 49 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by NeroFiddled:
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.19/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Frost Beer Works "Heavy Imperial Stout"
22 fl. oz. brown glass bottle, "BLACKOUT BATCH #80 BOTTLED ON: 04/07/2016" and sampled on 08/25/2016
$6.99 @ Cheese & Wine Traders, South Burlington, VT

Reviewed in real-time: I'm not sure about "heavy" but I'm guessing it is as I'm looking at one of the darkest beers I've ever seen. It's a completely opaque black body without highlights even when held to the light, and the head is a foamy light brown. I could have said dark tan, but I think dark brown actually fits it better. A massive head rose up as I poured it, and then took several minutes to settle before I could top it off. I'm not getting as much as I'd expect from the nose though. It smells like dark bittersweet chocolate, as if I were sniffing a candy bar. It's not bold though. Onward to the flavor... there's more roastiness to it, and some fruitiness. The roastiness is coffee-like rather than burnt, and with coffee-flavor as well. I'm thinking of dark oily beans, maybe even espresso beans - oh, yes, chocolate-covered espresso beans, I get some of that. After I swallow I get the dark chocolate, and the coffee bean, as well as a quick splash of fruitiness, and then a spritz of alcohol. Hmmm, I'm only a few sips in and I'm finding the alcohol, that's probably not good. How strong is this? 8.0% by volume, then that's really not good, but we'll see how it goes. You need some alcohol or it's just not right, but you don't want it to be too hot. Moving forward, or rather back, it doesn't leave much lacing behind. There's a little bit right after the sip, spotty and with occasional splashes, but not much. Oh boy, that aroma is great! Very nice. Compelling. It makes you want to have another sip. It's warmed a bit now, and widened, adding a touch of golden caramel and some nuttiness into the mix. The alcohol remains, as I'd feared, numbing the palate and adding a bit of spiciness. Let's hope it doesn't get out of hand. I can see this as a sipper though. One of those beers you pour into a snifter or a half pint, and then sit and relax with - you're not really drinking beer, you just have one with you while you're doing something else. You might even smoke a cigar. And this one might be perfect for that as it's rich, and strong, and flavorful but not really complex. You won't be distracted from whatever else you're doing (i.e. reading "The Brothers Karamazov" while Beethoven's piano sonatas play in the background). So I'm now probably about 5 oz. into this, which I see as a decent amount - you could split this between 4 people - and the alcohol hasn't become "too much". In fact, as it's warmed more it's seemingly become more balanced and smooth. Some of the carbonation that initially gave it a slight zing has now become more of a caress, and the 'wider' maltiness balances the alcohol which is not as accentuated as it once was by the carbonic acid. Medium-full in body by the way, leaning towards, perhaps, but never getting into the "full" range. Taking a step back again, I'm not sure that 5 oz. is enough, at least for me as I'm left wanting more. Had it been just a nightcap, OK, I'd probably have been fine with that, but I wanted more so I kept going (I have already listened to both the Sonata 17 in D minor and Sonata 14 in C# minor), and I now feel like 8 oz. is more appropriate, so if you're going to share I'd split the bottle, which is generally easier anyway. As it seems to work just as well or even better once some of the carbonation is released I'm also inclined to believe that you could pour half one night and then immediately re-seal it and it would be fine the next night as well. Hmmm, another beer that I wish I'd bought more of! I'd love to cellar a few of these and see how they shape up; or just have them on-hand for the right occasion (winter is right around the corner!). Conclusion: well worth trying. If you're a fan of Imperial stouts you should definitely grab it if you see it but I'm not sure it's worth going out of your way to acquire.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of ElGallo
4.28/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Simon212
4.26/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of jzeilinger
3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

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

Photo of johnnnniee
3.66/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Can from Craig, thanks for the hookup!
Inky black color with a mocha head that persists. Earthy roasty chocolate and caramel with a hint of cardboard. Decent sipper.

 166 characters

Photo of gdub
3.84/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of imscotty
4.28/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a pint bottle:

Appearance: Beer pours opaque a black. A half-inch tan head formed, and slowly died down. The tan lacing just lasted and lasted. Looks promising

Smell: Light and pleasant smell of roasted grains.

Taste: Nicely assertive fast of roasted grains, coffee and chocolate undertones. You can taste some alcohol, but it is not overbearing. This beer has a pleasant bitterness that really lasts in the aftertaste. The finish is bitter coffee and slightly nutty.

Mouth feel: The feel of this beer is a little thinner than the taste. Just wish it was a little more viscous. Lightly (and perfectly) carbonated. The flavors do cling to the mouth and again this beer has a long and satisfying finish.

Overall: I have been sampling these Frost Brewery beers whenever I visit my daughter in Hinesburg and I am increasingly impressed with the quality of their beers. This brewery has been open for less than a year now and holds great promise. This is my favorite of their offerings so far.

To Frost: I would love to see what barrel aging would do for the complexity of this beer, hint, hint.

 1,126 characters

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

Photo of oriolesfan4
3.87/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of clake
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of ProfessorHomer
4.92/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

A top-shelf American Imperial Stout. In fact, the best I've ever had. Kudos to the brewmaster!
On tap at Frost Beer Works.

124 characters

Photo of jaydoc
4.02/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of bobv
4.1/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Moderate to aggressive pour yields a one inch+ head that dissipates down to a ring with head after ten minutes with some lacing. Nose of bitter chocolate, gravel, and hops. Tastes of bitter chocolate and hops. Nice feel and finish on this one. Overall, this was retired, but my bottle was filled on 12/8/2016. It's back!

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Photo of mjw2808
3.66/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Knapp85
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of tobelerone
3.92/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of cambabeer
4.27/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of grahuba
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of ScaryEd
3.7/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 16 oz can, the first batch to be canned, into a tulip glass.

Pours a motor-oil jet black with 2 fingers of creamy mocha head. The head leaves a ton of sticky cobweb lacing before settling into a thin blanket. If your stout looks like this you're probably amazing at sex.

The aroma is incredibly roasted and grainy. There are notes of dark roasted malts, cereal grains, and smoked beef jerky. There's also a fair bit of bread followed by some subtly spicy hops.

The taste follows the nose: Dark roasted malts, burnt chocolate and toasted grains, and a faint touch of dark fruits. Finishes smoky and charred with plenty of hop bitterness.

The feel is full bodied with moderate carbonation. Very chewy and sticky, with a ton of lingering bitterness.

Overall, a good stout, but one that is far too bitter for my tastes. Between the smokiness and bitter hops, this one needs a few months to chill out. If you like ashy, charred flavors combined with hop bitterness, you'll adore this beer.

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Photo of WillieThreebiers
3.96/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of polloenfuego
4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a jet black with a small off white head that breaks leaving a whirl of foam and generous lacing.

Smell is led by the roasts. Coffee and chocolate, some grainy malts, a touch of leather and some residual hops.

Taste is similar to nose, with roasts and cocoa leading the way. I then get some other sweet flavors, I assume from the malts, and the as with the nose the residual hops.

Feel is full and carbonation is medium. I find this one coating and smooth if that makes sense, really quite a nice feel.

Can Frost make a bad beer? Not so far. This is a great sipping beer, and the flavors dance and change as you drink. Well done.

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Photo of Roguer
3.95/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A dark, nutty, ebony brew, topped with a very dark head of nice size. Excellent retention and very nice lacing slowing sliding down the glass.

Classic stout aroma: deep, dark, and roasty. Cocoa and a hint of coffee; a touch of char; sweet yeast esters; a thin wisp of sour grapes; bready and strong.

Flavor is drier and nuttier than the aroma indicated, leaning closer to a dry Irish stout. Very nutty, with more ashy char, as well. Very dry cocoa feel, especially on the finish. Very (pleasantly) bitter. There's quite a hop load in this stout, and it comes across (mostly on the finish) in earthy, vegetal tones.

Soft and smooth mouthfeel, but the beer comes across more as a strong single stout than a real imperial. Very pleasant to drink, but I prefer more heft in an imperial. At 8%, it's right at that stout/imperial stout border.

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Photo of kidzord
3.42/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of smb71481
4.1/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Heavy Imperial Stout from Frost Beer Works
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 49 ratings