AleSmith Speedway Stout | AleSmith Brewing Company

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AleSmith Speedway StoutAleSmith Speedway Stout
BA SCORE
4.38/5
Outstanding
6,922 Ratings
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
Ranking:
#269
Reviews:
1,719
Ratings:
6,922
pDev:
8.45%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
922
Gots:
2,199
Trade:
150
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,922 |  Reviews: 1,719
Photo of doktorhops
4.49/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Well looks like I finally got my hands on AleSmith Speedway Stout, and this thing is monolithic at 12% ABV - I mean it’s going to be a BIG (Bearing Immense Gusto) brew. Plus as a coffee stout it has some epic competition in the likes of Founders Breakfast Stout and my recent favourite Omnipollo Selassie Stout... it almost makes you wonder “If I was a brewer would I even want to throw my hat into the coffee stout ring”? It’s like placing your head inside the lions jaw (to borrow another circus metaphor). AleSmith are no slouches though - they know how to brew a BIG one. Time to bring out my “big book of words that describe the colour black” again... obsidian? Yeah we’ve heard that one before!

Poured from a 473ml can into a Duvel tulip.

A: Presents an opaque stygian atramentous [see, I found an even more complicated word to describe obsidian!] body with a pretty decent mocha head that hangs in there like a champ (given the 12% ABV). This doesn’t look as motherf__king ominous as other American Imperial Stouts, but perhaps this is the calm before the shitstorm? 8/10.

S: Nose is quite a bouquet of rich coffee bean, chicory, charred wood, oak, dark fruits (prune/plum), and a touch of brandy... and this next statement feels very Douglas Adams-like but: what a fragrant beer this speedway is. Look it’s a damn epic aroma - there’s no escaping it - it’s a black hole of an aroma: sucking in my olfactory senses into it like a dying star. 10/10.

T: Mmmmm-f__king-tastic! Creamy AF, but we’ll get to that, all of the above: coffee bean, chicory, charred wood, oak, prune, plum, touch of brandy, yes please sir! Plus, PLUS: it doesn’t taste anything near 12% ABV (‘cept for a little warming in the aftertaste). Pure genius AleSmith! [insert a bit more hyperbole here] Now some bad points: finish is slightly more bitter than wanted/warranted, and the coffee character isn’t as prominent as in FBS or Selassie... but damn this: spot hit. 9/10.

M: Heavy bodied, reasonably viscous, not quite Founders body (but nothing I’ve found yet beats Founders body), creamy-super-dense carbonation. 9/10.

D: Was not expecting this to come close to FBS but Speedway really does manage to come close, were it not for that bitter edge and the coffee flavour being less than prominent I might have been able to crown my new favourite coffee stout - but sorry FBS still claims that title by a narrow margin. 8/10.

Food match: I feel like smoking cigars in a totally non-exclusionary club right now.

 2,527 characters

Photo of Bouleboubier
4.09/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

(bomber bottle, bottled 01/27/1? - last number mangled, but it looks like a 5 or 6 - wouldn't surprise me if it is a 5, given that the store from where I purchased this routinely has old bottles on the shelves... poured into a teku)

L: nearly jet black liquid; buff brown, flighty foam... little foam retention, leaves almost no collar

S: deeply malty, over-baked cookie, bitter black chocolate... coffee barely pokes thru, very little booze... floral phenol, hints of dark fruit (vinous)

T: moderate, bordering on assertive roasted grain, supported and tamed by an underlying semi-sweet toffee flavor... mellow bitterness, citrus peel-like in its flavor, possibly some faint black tea... touch of ash and molasses in the aftertaste, later some subtle menthol and nuttiness emerges... malt is fairly dense throughout

F: medium-bodied, not quite edging toward full/thick - thinned out well by understated yet enlivening ethanol

O: good - nothing distinct/memorable flavor-wise... rather mellow and refined (by age?) for its ingredients and listed strength... seems like it's in a faded state (which is great for drinking), but I'd prefer to try this more fresh next time

 1,174 characters

Photo of HorseheadsHophead
4.89/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

L: Pitch black with a creamy light brown head. A massive head is produced that leaves a surprisingly lasting creamy brown cap that leaves copious sheets of lacing.

S: Tons of umami/soy sauce, fudge brownie, cinnamon/clove spice, dark chocolate, gingerbread, fruitcake, date, fig, raisin.

T: Gentle waves of milk chocolate, cocoa, and malted milk balls upfront, which then immediately leads way to a MASSIVE punch of increasingly complex malts and roast. Dark chocolate, fudge, gingerbread, snickerdoodle cookies, caramel, and spice cake. A light espresso roast, a burnt edge, an earthy bitterness that keeps the chocolate and cake roast in check. There's a mild soy sauce note pervading the beer, but it's not as prominent as the nose suggests; but it's still there. Finishes lightly sweet but with a touch of dryness, and an almost green pepper vegetal bitterness, perhaps from the coffee. Fantastic.

F: Pretty much full-bodied. Smooth and creamy, super rich and bready. Feels a little thin on the mid-palate. It's not quite as chewy and milkshake-like as Ten Fidy and some other contemporary imperial stouts, but it's still pretty thick. A moderately high carbonation makes it super easy to drink.

O: An absolutely fantastic imperial stout. The coffee character was barely detecable, but I don't know how old this can is. Regardless, this is fantastic, world-class stout.

 1,389 characters

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

Photo of hopkrid
4.27/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of jdell15
4.37/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Mdaniel723
4.25/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Probably the best coffee stout I've had, great coffee flavor without being overpowering

87 characters

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

750 ml bottle served reasonably cold into a pint glass. Purchased while visiting the US for half of an arm and a quarter of a leg. :)

Appearance - Ominous black, engine oil like viscocity and an impressive finger and a half of deep tan / beige / brown foam that had impressive staying power.

Smell - An absolute molasses monster, licorice prevalent, treacle mixed in as well. Coffee is there as well, but well saturated in the background and subtle touches of vanilla make it through as well. An absolute malt bomb. Love this nose.

Taste - Molasses and licorice are the reals stars here overshadowing everything yet allowing a little quality time for vanilla, coffee, and bits of tobacco and leather. Seeing as I am someone who really enjoys the maltiness of molasses and licorice flavors this is dreamy. Just a little less coffee than I was expecting / hoped for.

Mouthfeel - Smooth yet thick and definitely chewy. Carbonation is medium and body is thick. Just right for an intensely flavored stout.

Overall - A really excellent stout that met expectations, but maybe didn't exceed them. No real qualms here (other than the high price, but that can be expected for a 12% imperial stout) other than i wish the coffee shone through just a bit more. Surprisingly drinkable for such a big and molasses / treacle and licorice forward beer, I could see myself purchasing another bottle, however the option of a 4 pack of other world class stouts is often a little too much to pass up. Highly recommended for any serious purveyor of beers and especially for those with an affinity for licorice and molasses forward beers.

 1,621 characters

Photo of luvbier
4.1/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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

Photo of Chuckdiesel24
4.47/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

My kind of coffee stout. Slightly sweet. Great out of the switch to 16 oz cans!

81 characters

Photo of NolaHopHead
4.43/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2-yr old bottle. This brew holds up so well, tons of coffee, slick.

68 characters

Photo of ECOBOOSTINST
4.19/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A very nice brew. Strong Chocolate and Coffee, and just a tad on the thin side. I could see myself drinking a whole ton of this if it was in our market.

 152 characters

Photo of Jgolka
5/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of MikeBogert53
4.79/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of APH
3.98/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of drews240
4.24/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Brendanjames
3.03/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Photo of Fubudu187
4.25/5  rDev -3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

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

Photo of HipCzech
4.36/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Serving: 1 pint 9.4 oz bottle poured into a 9 oz Libbey Embassy snifter.

Appearance: Deep, inky dark brown with a short, dense head of brown foam and speckle lace.

Smell: Rich aroma of coffee beans, caramel, and chocolate truffles.

Taste: Deep, roasted malt flavors; coffee, dark fruit, burnt caramel, dark chocolate, and an earthy, bitter close. Warming, numbing alcohol as it warms.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation and a creamy, smooth feel.

Overall: Massively flavorful but still balanced - intense while still very drinkable.

 559 characters

Photo of porters4life
4.41/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Notninja
4.49/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

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

Serving: Can
Canned: Jan-31-2017 (Consumed: Jul-25)


A:
Pours a thick pitch with a finger plus of doughy mocha head thanks to a very aggressive pour. Okay retention; sheets of lacing. (4)

S:
Rich, intermingled layers of roastiness. Molasses, coffee, cocoa powder, toffee. (4.5)

T:
Mmmm. Maply sweet roasted malts, coffee and sugar, chocolate, toffee, burnt caramel. (4.5)

M:
Full body with light carbonation and a to h feel, lingering treacle and toast finish. (4.5)

O:
A really really nice beer.
It looks good enough for gov't work but the rest is the tits. Everything is cohesive and together but still strong enough to be easily teased apart. Very sweet with a nice balancing roast bitterness. Thick and velvety. Like espresso with maple ice cream. Truly a great beer.
Will have again. I'm curious to see how the other can I got is in a year or so. (4.5)

 863 characters

Photo of Strohm
4.4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

AleSmith Speedway Stout from AleSmith Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.38 out of 5 with 6,922 ratings
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