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AleSmith Speedway Stout | AleSmith Brewing Company

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AleSmith Speedway StoutAleSmith Speedway Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company
California, United States
alesmith.com

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Jet Black, with an off-white head. Starts with a strong coffee and dark chocolate sensation, then fades to a multitude of toasty, roasty and caramel malt flavors. Clean and crisp, full- bodied. Warmth from the high alcohol content lightens up the feel. You won't fool your taste buds - this beer is HUGE!

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-09-2002

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,650
Ratings:
6,608
Avg:
4.37
pDev:
16.93%
 
 
Wants:
903
Gots:
2,131
For Trade:
154
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,650 | Ratings: 6,608
Photo of aleigator
4.24/5  rDev -3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Yields a slick viscous black color, with a unique, very bubbly mohagony head.

Smells big times of cocoa, fudge and coffee, wrapped up by syrup and toffeeish malts. Has a whiff of alcohol underneath, providing a caramel burn. The aromas exhibit an interesting interplay between milk chocolate and coffee, leaning even more on chocolate.

Has a fitting, lower carbonation, complimenting the beers medium body.

Tastes of bakers chocolate and smooth coffee, accompanied by bready malts, also revealing glazed caramel. Drinks throughout smooth, coffee comes along with lots of cream, adding a dry bitterness, which gets countered by alcoholic, biting molasses. Finishes with a well pronounced boiled coffee bitterness, while chocolate adds depth, including a subtle sourness.

The beers convinces by its smooth coffee mouthfeel, which gets a lot of depth, due to the luscious chocolate, commuting between sweet and dry. The beers finish is unusually long and complex, revealing crushed coffee beans, toffee, mousse au chocolate among a coffee milk sourness.

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Photo of thepenguin
4.24/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Pours pitch black with a decently-sized khaki head for the style that retains itself in large bubbles around the edges of the glass.

S: Semi-sweet with musty coffee, caramel, bready malt and some dry cacao. A nice roasted character that breaks through the malt and maintains a good balance.

T: Very balanced but certainly on the sweet side, particularly in the finish. Lots of caramel and toffee, with fairly restrained coffee flavor for a coffee stout. Thick and rich, with just enough coffee and hops keeping the rest from getting out of hand. Sweet, syrupy finish with plenty of roasty coffee and a decent amount of booze.

F: Medium-plus body – surprisingly light for this beer’s strength – with light-to-medium carbonation and a substantial amount of lingering warmth in the finish.

Thoughts: A classic for a reason. At 12% abv and with it’s sweetness it’s not the most drinkable beer I’ve come across, but it’s a very well crafted imperial stout. The relatively light body adds some drinkability, and the coffee definitely adds some balance and complexity.

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Photo of newk340
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured in a Duvel tulip and bottle split with hu5om.

A: thick black pour, voluptuous tan 2-finger head that left excellent lacing.

S: a pleasing blend of chocolate and coffee.

T: a blast of coffee that sizzles for a few seconds before fading to a bitter chocolate with the swallow, oddly still leaves a coffee aftertaste with hints of caramel and malts.

MF/D: a brief sizzle of carbonation with a nice smooth swallow.

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Photo of tastybeer
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Super dark brown opaque liquid with a large light brown, bubbly topping. It fades in reasonable time leaving fine stringy webbing all over the glass. Sticky sticky... Aroma is about a pound of chocolate and roast coffee beans, caramel glazed, with soft vanilla, berries and nuts, musky wood, and a little bit of something wine-like. Very fun dark sniffings with a bright fruity edge... And time for a sip. Thick dark chocolate, roasty malt, blackstrap molasses, tobacco, meat seasonings, leather, smoke, all smooth and heavy with a sharp and elongated bitterness that works its way in at the end of each sip, then holds on until the next. Pretty big guns here... This is not meant to be consumed quickly. A lot of flavor to behold and very aromatic. Slight alcohol warming, otherwise its strength is not conveyed by the taste or sense of alcohol. This however does feel like an extra strong beer due to the intensity of all its flavors. Definitely worth having, perhaps not regularly or in large amounts. Nicely done.

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Photo of MiScusi
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12-23-07
4.5 / 4 / 4.5 / 4 / 4
From a bottle. Chocolate, roast, coffee blend in aroma. Cocholate in the very end of the sip, and then sweet coffee after that in the aftertaste. Aftertaste is a pretty amazing blend of coffee and chocolate.

___
3-1-2007
4.5 / 4 / 4.5 / 4.5 / 4
Served in a goblet at the Stone Bistro. Appearance was a midnight brown with a caramel colored head that had great retention. Smell was chocolate and coffee. Taste was of strong chocolate and lots of coffee for the most part with a nice mellow roasted character as well. Alcohol was well hidden. Moutfeel was thick and full, carbonation very low for a nice smooth drink.

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Photo of dd43
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This will be a two part review, starting with a relatively fresh bottling and concluding with a bottle I intend to age for 6 months.

Fresh bottle:

Poured at 49 degrees. What, you don't temp your stouts? Given the flavor/aroma profile of this beer and the readily apparent booziness, I was somewhat surprised that the body of this beer wasn't more substantial. Big dark chocolate notes up front, as well as roasted coffee and almost a vanilla like presence. Flavors follow suit, roasty and toasty malts with a chocolate fudge character. Good amount of hop bitterness coupled with the bitter touch from coffee. The heat from the alcohol is pretty big here, there's really no getting around it. That vanilla thing in the bouquet really came to mind because of the alcohol, and I found myself exhausting it through my sinuses after swallowing. The mouthfeel is pretty nice, but like I said a bit more thin than what I was expecting on the initial pour. The legs on the inside of the glass and the coffee colored foam on top were appealing. This is a yummy beer that I recommend sharing with someone that appreciates big time imperial stouts.

Aged bottle:

It turns out that six months on the shelf at 65 degrees didn't do much to quell the heat. However, I actually enjoyed this beer more the second time around. Perhaps my palate evolved somewhat. This really is a great beer. I chose six months out of fear that a longer aging period would cause the coffee and chocolate notes to subside, but after this experiment I think a year would have been more appropriate.

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Photo of justintcoons
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours jet black with a thin, brown head that dissipates quickly. This clings to the side of the glass nicely.

N: Dark chocolate, coffee beans, toffee, hints of grapefruit, some slight booze and maybe anise?

T: Rich coffee flavors run throughout this beer along with rich dark chocolate, toffee, some woodiness and perhaps some vanillla.

M: Medium bodied, creamy and smooth.

O: Beautiful dark flavors all around. Incredibly smooth with a slight bitterness in the finish. Extremely well balanced. Alcohol is hidden well.

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Photo of drinknewbelgium
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle pours dark very nice head smells of dark chocolate roasted barley and hints of alcohol but the prevailing smell is that of chocolate waiting for head to subside tastes of chocolate with a faint smoked woodiness and finishes smooth with hints of alcohol but leaves a smooth chocolated taste in your mouth feel is right for this style the only thing to say is a tiny bit too thin but that is over looked i could definitely drink a few glasses

i recommend this beer to any one that can obtain it and it is definitely worth for even a trade you cant go wrong with alesmith

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Photo of Dustin_Sallitt
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours jet black with a large khaki head. Smell is a little muted, but has some coffee and cocoa present. The taste reminds me of founders breakfast stout, just way more well done. Tons of coffee, a little cocoa, and a nice roasted finish. Strong coffee lingering aftertaste. Pretty good, but I'm overall a little let down.

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Photo of WakeandBake
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A dark black pour with a lasting tan rocky head , sticky jagged lacing left all down the glass . Aroma of coffee , coco, caramel,and earthy hops. Flavor is of coffee , sweet and dark chocolate , dark roasted malt , nice level of bitterness ,creamy mouthfeel , full body , medium carbonation . Nice warmiong effect ,with the alcohol flavor well hidden . Nice long sweet finish . Very drinkable , lucky to get to try this .

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Photo of thatsfine
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter. Pitch black appearance with a two finger dark tan head that dissipates pretty slowly and leaves nice lacing.

Chocolate and coffee to the nose. Nothing too complicated but very inviting.

The taste immediately gives me chocolate and coffee but neither is overpowering. In the aftertaste, the coffee dominates. Plenty of roasted malts. Delicious. Not as much alcohol heat as I expected.

Thick, creamy mouthfeel and pretty low carbonation. This is a pretty filling beer.

The low carbonation makes it easier to drink, but this is definitely still a sipping beer.

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Photo of RichardRankin
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Look is very dark brown, medium head with a bit of lacing.
Smell is strongly coffee, this will probably be less prominent in the one I'm still aging.
Taste was heavily roasted coffee, yielding to traditional malty stout. Not overly boozy.
Mouthfeel is smooth, not quite as complex as an aged BCBS but very nice.

A very good stout to find if you haven't tried one.

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Photo of ajm5108
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A little slicker, oiler mouthfeel than I expected. Lots of mocha on the nose, very even & smooth flavor with the roasted coffee, semi-sweet baker's chocolate and some vanilla as well. Robust but easy to drink, though I cannot say it pops out from the field of excellent stouts readily available nowadays.

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Photo of AdamGarcia
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle served in Darkness tulip.

A: Pours noticeably viscous and near black. Zero light getting through. Cappucino colored head rises up and settles down quickly, leaving a film of multi-sized bubbles.

S: Bold dark fruit. Chocolate and vanilla. Coffee in the background. Hints of sweet cherry.

T: Big doses of chocolate. Waves of bitter chocolate smoothed out with milk chocolate. Dark fruit is present briefly, but not to the same extent as in the aroma. Coffee is understated, but very tasty. This is a coffee stout that will appeal to non-coffee lovers as well.

M: Lovely viscous feel. Silky & smooth. Perfect.

D: Good. I don't find this to be tremendously complex, but it is very interesting. At 12% abv this is clearly a sipper. Something that I can't quite put my finger on, keeps me from wanting multiple servings.

Very nice beer. I really wish Alesmith was available in the Pittsburgh market, as everything I've had from this brewery is world class. Luckily, a short trip to Vintage Estates is all it takes to replenish my Alesmith stash. If you haven't had Speedway be sure to put it on you "to do" list.

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Photo of hwwty4
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to several BA's for helping me to acquire a couple of these bottles.

Poured a 750ml bottle into my Tripel Karmeliet tulip. Speedway Stout pours a viscous India ink black with a huge dark beige head that left some serious legs when swirled around my tulip. The Aroma is a trifecta of smells. Huge notes of dark roasted malts, combined with strongly roasted espresso beans, and dark chocolate nibs. The flavor really follows suit with heavily roasted malts being the major flavor with bitter chocolate and some seriously cold pressed espresso beans. Also there are hints of vanilla and just a subtle booziness to it. Nothing over the top but all blended very well together. The mouthfeel is velvety smooth. Just like licking a 70's velvet of Elvis. Amazing. This is just the second beer I've had from Alesmith and they both lived up to their reputation.

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Photo of stawn
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours like 6000 mile old motor oil. Nice thick dirty head leaves great lacing!

S - Smells of warm alcohol and coffee, some hidden molasses or dark fruit...figs maybe?

T - Very complex.Alcohol and bitter coffee hits the front of the tongue then roasted maltyness on the way down. Then the aftertaste...tastes like Hershey syrup running down your throat. mmm

M - As it warms the alcohol is subdued and the coffee and chocolate come out.

D - Great sweet coffee stout!

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Photo of russwbeck
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Black pour with a nice brown head. Retention isn't great but it laces nicely.

S: The smell is really sweet, chocolate mostly up front. Coffee though is the dominant smell here.

T: Sweet and roasty chocolate start it off much like the smell. Similarly so, the coffee comes next. It's even bigger than you'd expect. Very dry finish.

MF: A little lighter than I wanted it to be, but the carbonation is on point. No hit of the alcohol.

O: Pretty good beer. Not a lot more than coffee but the 12% is non-existent. It could use perhaps a bit more balance but no complaint here!

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Photo of LordAdmNelson
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours an opaque motor-oil black with a light milk chocolate head. Head fades relatively rapidly, but laces quite well.

S- Strong, I can smell it as soon as I open it. Rich espresso and some hops. Some phenolic/alcohol/sour character.

T- Taste is robust--big fruity flavors with coffee and roasted malt. Grapes and apples mix together with the dark malts to produce a nice flavor. Slightly sour. Coffee and chocolate come through strong. Definitely a big flavor-stout. A little piney hops aftertaste. But still sour. I think this is a bad bottle, but it's apparent that even a bad bottle of Speedway is somewhat good.

M- Prickly from the alcohol, medium bodied vs. other big stouts, slightly dry finish. Kind of menthol-like cooling comes through. Wish it was a little bigger/creamier, but still good.

D- Definitely an intriguing brew, keeps you coming back for more. ABV makes it more of a sipper though. Sour note was off-putting, but kind of reminds me of a mix between Edmund Fitzgerald Porter and Stone IRS. Would like to see this mellow out with some age. Spicy, robust, and tasty. Worth seeking out. I'm obviously torn in this review because I think it was a bad bottle, but it still wasn't that bad of a beer. Weird. I'll have to revisit it.

4, 4.5, 3, 3.5, 3.5

2-18-10

Revisiting this beer was definitely something I had to do. Tremendous appearance, with some golden brown head that stays for the whole beer. Aroma is pretty good still, big roasty malt, chocolate, and some woody/oaky notes. Taste is out of this world with some big roasted malts, chocolate malt, vanilla, oak, and others. Lasting finish. A bit dry on the finish, full and creamy. Delicious. Very happy that I came back to it and sad that I had a bad bottle to begin with.

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Photo of mastergintoki
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

: Two fingers of a brown head. Black as the night.

S: dark roasted coffe. Molasses amd licorice.

Molasses licorice. The coffe is baely therer. There is some sweetness

Poured from a 750mL bottle,

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Photo of LiquidBread219
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is dark brown. Pours with a 1 finger mocha colored head. Average retention but no lacing

S: Interesting nose, but not quite what I was expecting. Mix of roasted malt and creamed coffee. Definitely more roast then coffee. Some bitter chocolate

T: Ah, there is the coffee I was hoping for. Coffee presence is much larger, but still has the accompanying roasted malt and bitter chocolate. Small alcohol presence

M: Medium bodied, bordering on full. Super smooth with light carbonation. Roasted coffee aftertaste

D: A good beer that lived up to my expectations. Nice coffee beer and I wish I had more of it.

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Photo of s1ckboy
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Fresh bottle, less than 2 months. Agressive pour into snifter. Big 3 finger head, wasn’t expecting that with such high ABV. Taste is typical of big imperial stouts (think founders Imp Stout) with decent amount of coffee. Big chocolatey flavors. This was a bit of a let down seeing as how it was on the top 100 beers, I was expecting a lot more. Very good though.

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Photo of coreyfmcdonald
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into a snifter

A: Pours pitch black with three fingers of dense light brown foam. Very nice. Retention and lacing are both amazing. An average pour really leads to a ton of of head.

S: Strong roasted malts up front with a ton of dark chocolate and some floral hops.

T: Very strong dark chocolate and burnt malts with roasted malts and a bit of coffee in the background. Fairly straightforward, but quite appealing. Boozy, but not over the top.

M: Quite thick with creamy carbonation.

O: This beer is straightforward, but extremely delicious. Boozy, roasty, burnt, and dark chocolate-y.

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Photo of dblinkhorn
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a foil-wrapped 750ml capped bottle into a snifter.

Appearance - Pours with a dark tan half-finger head that is very creamy but has a large number of larger soapy bubbles, too. This quickly dissipates to a very thin layer of patchy lace. Good lacing is left sticking to the sides of the glass as you drink it. The beer is opaque black.

Smell - Fresh extremely oily-smelling wet hops. Roasted malt character is definitely there, but it seems like the character isn't quite as dark roasted as some. Some alcohol-like over-ripe dark fruit character, mainly fig and raisin. Notes of milky chocolate are also present with a touch of coffee aroma. Moderate alcohol aroma, but it is not a harsh sensation.

Taste - Super oily bitterness up front from hops and ultra-bitter dark chocolate flavors. Again, and old-ale like alcohol character with raisin and fig fruitiness. Also a more milk-chocolate flavor with some bitter coffee tastes in the middle. Some peppery spiciness is also present, along with notes of molasses, caramel, and brown sugar behind the strongest set of flavors. I am tasting some dry grainy character, as well. The malt character tastes much darker than it smelled here, and definitely seems fully-roasted. The aftertaste has some earthy tones with a background bitterness of dark chocolate and hops, on a background flavor from the malt.

Mouthfeel - Perfect. The carbonation has absolutely no bite and holds its structure throughout the entire taste. This is a very heavy-bodied beer and it is extremely smooth.

Drinkability - Extremely bitterness of chocolate/coffee/oily hops character. Strong and rich (almost filling) malt presence. I probably won't be able to finish this bottle by myself, even though it's very good.

An excellent and powerfully flavored stout from Alesmith. Having this really perks my interest in the oak-aged version of this brew. If you like strong-flavored stouts with a super wet and oily mouthfeel and hops, this is for you. Highly recommended (as a sipper!).

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Photo of SirSketch
4.23/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Speedway is jet black with one of the creamiest heads I've seen on a beer. The smell is reminiscent of chocolate fondue and fresh coffee, and perhaps a burnt toast quality as well. Light fruit flavors emerge, but fade quickly. Slightly metallic taste. Slick as hell on the tongue. Overall this is a great beer worth tracking down, and only a slight notch behind Dark Lord in my book.

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Photo of dowen17
4.22/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a pitch black with a nice two finger milk chocolate head. Great retention. Leaves patchy lacing down the glass.

On the nose is rich roasted coffee. Big dark malts. Bittersweet chocolate. The coffee smells very very fresh here.

Taste is very coffee heavy. Roast dark coffee and bitter chocolate. Alcohol is present on the aftertaste.

Big chewy mouthfeel as you would expect from a stout. Good carbonation as well.

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AleSmith Speedway Stout from AleSmith Brewing Company
4.37 out of 5 based on 6,608 ratings.
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