AleSmith Speedway Stout | AleSmith Brewing Company

AleSmith Speedway StoutAleSmith Speedway Stout
BA SCORE
4.38/5
6,893 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:
#274
Reviews:
1,713
Ratings:
6,893
pDev:
8.45%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
922
Gots:
2,194
Trade:
149
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,893 |  Reviews: 1,713
Photo of Kegatron
4.7/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served on cask, via handpump, at the Blind Lady Alehouse (San Diego, CA) on 3/17/10 during their "Black Wednesday" St. Patrick's Day celebration. Served in a snifter.

Pours a dense, oily, black, topped with a frothy 1/2 finger of dark mocha head. This looks very burnt, with an angry looking reddish flareup when swirled, leaving back a huge cascade of spotty lacing that dots the sides of the glass. The aroma is lush with dark roasted coffee flavor, as well as a deep backing tang of chocolate and toffee sweetness. The whold thing is rounded out by a combo of herbal hops and some extra earthy coffee notes.

The taste showcases a bit more of the sharpness of the hops up front, with the fudgey sweetness of the chocolate malts coming in next, before that robust coffee and dark roasted malts fill out the back of the profile. This isn't quite as sharp and tangy as I remember it being on tap but there is definitley some more definition to the flavors here, with a ton of dry roasted flavor coming out in the finish. The mouthfeel is full bodied, with a huge mellow creaminess to it that is maybe showing a bit more of it's warmth than usual here on cask. Fortunately, it isn't too distracting, as this still drinks like a champ for a beer this size.

I love when the cask-version of a beer brings a little something different to the table and this one definitely did. The extra definition of the flavors really exposes the coffee even more here but the quality of it was more than able to step up to the plate and meet expectations. I love this beer and it was a rare treat (this is only the 3rd cask review out of nearly 800 here on BA) to be able to try it this way.

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Photo of wethorseblanket
4.4/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of billab914
4.55/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into my Dogfish snifter glass. pours black with a thin tan colored bubbly foam on top. The head settled out and stuck to the sides of the glass but left good lacing on the sides as I drank it.

Not surprisingly coffee is the first thing that hits you in the aroma, but it also gives off some bitter chocolate and roasty flavors. Taste, much like the nose is coffee dominant but is also somewhat balanced out with the chocolate and roasted flavors.

Mouthfeel is on the thicker side and slightly creamy. Carbonation is moderate. It's very drinkable for being 12% abv, I didn't even think it was that high until I checked the bottle for the review. It's a very smooth and easy drinking coffee beer.

Overall one of the best stouts I have had, the coffee flavor is very present but not overdone. It's very surprising that it can be over 12% and have virtually no alcohol bite. It really drinks like it could be a 6% stout. I will be buying this one again as long as Southbay keeps shipping them to me.

 1,026 characters

Photo of smithj4
4.4/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of vfgccp
4.38/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bought bottle in 2011, opened October 2013.

A - Thick coffee black body. Tall, creamy, dark cocoa head. Great retention and lace.

S - Bourbon, coffee grinds, oak, caramel, honey, white booze.

T - Thick coffee, worcestershire sauce, dry oak, burnt molasses. Dry, 80% cocoa dark chocolate finish.

M - Thick, creamy, full body. Soft finish.

O - An excellent double coffee stout. The worcestershire note is the only thing holding this beer back.

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Photo of atrocity
4.39/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of nathanmiller
3/5  rDev -31.5%

Photo of XmnwildX12
4/5  rDev -8.7%

Photo of mendvicdog
4.34/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Gkruszewski
4.4/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of PhineasMcClintock
4.25/5  rDev -3%

Photo of russpowell
4.69/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2007 Version pours an effervescent ebony ( I hold it towards the setting sun & zero light penetrates it!) with 2+ fingers of mocha colored head into my Vondel snifter. Shimmers like 50 wt motor oil. Not much lacing & head retention

S: Chocolate, iron & roasted malts, plus some booze as this warms, oakyness as really warmed up

T: Iron, roasted malt, milk & baker's chocolate up front. I get a mocha as this warms along with dark chocolate & a bit of booze, plus Kahlua. Finishes dry with strong coffee
( Kona to me! ), much chocolate & the right amount of booze

MF: Real chewy & oily, plus silky with minimal carbonation, very rich

Drinks easy for the ABV, the complexity just sucks you in. A little too much coffee & dryness to try to session on IMO. Superb Imp Stout!

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

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

Appearance: Pours a dark brown, near black body with, well, no real head to speak of. Rather Kahlua-like in appearance.

Smell: Heavily roasted dark malts with notes of espresso, dark chocolate, molasses, and chocolate cake (topped with a cherry). Keyword: Lovely.

Taste: Dark, roasty maltiness with full flavors of dark chocolate, birthday cake coated in blackstrap molasses, and (even moreso) robust coffee. Slightly obscured fruitiness. Roasty, earthy bitterness. A flickering of sweet dark caramel in amongst the heavier flavors. A distinct, warming touch of alcohol heat. Long, lingering coffee finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full body. Medium carbonation. Relatively creamy mouthfeel.

Drinkability: A very rich, complex stout, and yet another fantastic release from AleSmith.

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Photo of ZEB89
4.75/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of duceswild
4.5/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of mdaschaf
4.17/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a nice black color with a one finger mocha colored head, nice retention and lots of lacing. It is thin, but covers most of the glass.

S: Lots going on in the nose with some chocolate, molasses, licorice, brown sugar and a little bit of coffee – not as much as I was expected, and for me not a problem at all. Could be from age, no idea how old the bottle is. There is a little bit of dark fruit as well.

T: A good bit of roasted malt and chocolate, with coffee undertones. A little bit of nondescript dark fruit shows up. Very light smokiness and underlying vanilla and cream.

M: Medium to full bodied with moderate carbonation. Slight warming in my stomach from the alcohol, but for 12%, hidden very well. Drinks very smooth.

O: Very nice beer, lived up to reputation. Again, not sure on bottle age, but the coffee really was not as strong as I expected, which is a good thing for me.

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

Obsidian. Other than a mere sliver of pecan shell brown along the bottom edge of the glass, this beer is a complete black hole. The coffee-with-cream colored head looks nearly as thick and as meaty as the liquid on which it sits. Its moonscape surface contains multiple bubbles of various sizes that create pits and craters as they burst. Lace is in relatively short supply, but then I wasn't expecting much given the ABV.

The aroma was amazing as I poured and is no less amazing now that I'm concentrating on it for real. The three major components are ridicously roasted black malt, bittersweet chocolate and espresso. I can pick up the slightest hint of alcohol, though it's more than welcome in a beer as big as this one is.

AleSmith Speedway Stout is better than expected... and I expected no less than greatness. This is one of the hugest, most full-flavored, most mouthfilling ales of any style that I've ever had the pleasure to drink. Words fail me when attempting to describe the sheer massiveness of the malt backbone. Each sip explodes with the force of a daisy cutter, sending great gouts of melted, coffee bean-flecked chocolate fudge up, down and sideways until my mouth seems unable to contain it all.

SS tastes blacker, meaner, more menacing than most other American double stouts that I've run across. It's more along the lines of an RIS in that regard. It's as sweet and as chocolatey as any other ADS, but it's also impressively bitter and has a huge blackstrap molasses vibe goin' on. In fact, the flavor profile contains the entire gamut of stout flavors and still manages to combine them into a beautiful, seamless whole.

I don't like coffee and I'm not usually a fan of coffee-dominant beer. I had a few qualms about this one when I read the back label and found out that 'pounds and pounds of coffee beans' were added during the brewing. Surprisingly, the flavor isn't overwhelmingly java-like. The finish is freakishly long and leaves the mouth and tongue coated with a 'bitter hop cones (mixed with fire-roasted black malt)' layer of scum that one doesn't usually find outside the biggest IPAs/DIPAs.

That brings us to mouthfeel. Simply put, this beer has one of the three biggest mouthfeels in all of beerdom. It's easily the equal of Dark Lord (I'm leaving the third spot open because nothing else comes readily to mind). If you've ever drunk eggnog or heavy cream, you'll have some idea of what it feels like. It's velvety smooth and impossibly creamy. In other words, it's mouth candy for those of us whose attach more importance to mouthfeel than to anything other than flavor.

I've just realized that I haven't even commented on the ABV or the noticeable alchohol yet. That's because this is one of the most well-masked high alcohol beers in existence. Whether that has more to do with its age (an estimated 1 year) or to its brewer's skill, I couldn't say. As noted in the nose, the alcohol is an integral part of the whole and is a more than welcome contributor. Completely burying the beast just wouldn't be right; a little controlled snarl is just what this beer needs.

AleSmith Speedway Stout deserves every accolade ever thrown its way. I'd love to scratch off the 2nd place ribbon shown on the rear label since this behemoth takes a back seat to no stout. No how, no way. This is a truly special beer brewed by a truly special brewery and is not to be missed.

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Photo of drewone
4.25/5  rDev -3%

Photo of Jason
4/5  rDev -8.7%

Photo of mdfb79
4.42/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From 2/6/10 notes. Had at SC Day from a 750 ML bottle thanks to nimbleprop.

a - Poured a dark brown with a small amount of brown head. Not as dark as the barrel aged Speedway but still very dark.

s - Smells of coffee, but the coffee smells somewhat faded to me. Still very nice with hints of roasted malts and chocolate as well.

t - Tastes of coffee and roasted malts. Again, I thought the coffee was fading, but it had a great taste that was sweeter than I was expecting.

m - Smooth and creamy, full bodied, little carbonation.

d - Overall I really liked this one. We sampled this followed by an 06 Barrel Aged Speedway and while this was not as good as that beer, this was still very good. I have a bottle of 09 Speedway that I think I'll be holding onto for a year or so in hopes it taste like this.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.62/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

750ml foil wrapped capped bottle aged for approx. 6 months and served at cellar temperature in a Pint Glass

A – Poured a very deep dark black oil like liquid with a large two finger head of tannish brown foam on top. Very nice thick poured on this one as it seemed to just ooze out of the bottle and plop down into the glass. There was no way to vigorously pour this one; rather you just kind of had to let it slide down. Nice retention initially as it took a good few minutes before the head settled down to just a thin film of brown across the top. After five or more minutes even this was gone as the only thing remaining were some small amounts of tan suds clinging to the side and a thick black oil looking liquid taking up residence in the glass.

S – The aroma was very rich and full of roasted malts and hints of coffee. It was rather strong and pungent with hints of dark baker’s chocolate also easily apparent as you took in whiff or two. Some strong hints of the alcohol were also easily found even in the aroma, giving you a hint at what lies beneath this 12%abv monster. As it warmed you were able to start picking out some aromas of sugary lactose and even a hint of caramel or vanilla adding some great depth and profile to the smell.

T – The flavor was very full and rich and really made me very pleased to be able to try it. With all the hype surrounding it, it was nice to not be let down and to see this one hold up to the loft goals I had set for it. The rich flavor awaiting me was touched off by a storm of dark baker’s chocolate laced in between rich Smokey roasted malts a touch of alcohol creating almost a wave of just dark delights that rolled over you and warmed you from the inside out. The deep flavor gave way to a subtle sweetness mingled in were the nice lactose flavor and the hints of vanilla which only served to deep its profile and increase its grip on me. The finish was strong with a long lasting hint of chocolate and a boozy like quality that dragged it out.

M – A very full bodied ale this one came across as thick as molasses with a rich oil like coating across the entire inside of your mouth. A very big rich creamy feel this one simply would not let go. It was truly the dessert beer, not really reach out and grasping that feeling of shake like consistency, but more relying on the just full bodied assault of the sense. Very nice.

D – Well for 12%abv you could barely tell I will give it that. It was very filling, really putting a hurt on you and filling you up pretty quickly. Now I took my time with this one to be honest, really enjoying it and taking almost 3 hours to drink the bottle. I just thought it was better this way as it really let me take in the flavors and see the changes occur as it went from the 50 degrees of my cellar to almost room temperature.

Overall I thought this was great. Really a very fine and high quality ale here. I would have no issues getting this one again as it really embodies a strong stout in every sense of the word. Very full big flavors with a long dry finish. What more could you ask for. Completely deserving of its spot on the list, a really fine ale indeed.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.67/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this on Nitro pour at Al's of Hampden served in a snifter.

The color is black as pitch with small medium brown cap with ultra fine bead, the head returns with a swirl and retreats again. Clarity is opaque and lace sticks decently. The smell is luscious dark chocolate mixed with espresso and some vanilla with light hints of dark sugar. The feel is very good, not bad on Nitro with thick viscous creamy body and mild alcohol with subtle bitterness and smooth roast essence, the finish is medium dry.

The flavor is rich like brownie batter with spiked coffee and vanilla with slight rum-like dark sugar tinge. The flavor of the coffee is well blended with the smooth mildly sweet dark malt which is slightly cocoa-like and has a hint of earthy peppery hops to back up the light caramel. Overall I loved this and didn't want to stop, but alas a 12% stout that is this drinkable is dangerous. I think this is one of the best of this style a must try if you can get it on tap or in this case Nitro.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4.16/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter. I've had this bottle a good while. At least a year.

Appearance - Jet black with an ample mocha head. Laces beautifully and retains some surface wisps.

Smell - Coffee with a slightly metallic aroma. Chocolate malts come through just slightly, but coffee is the most dominant aroma.

Taste - Coffee is extremely well blended. Blends with a deep burnt chocolate flavor. Enough sweetness to keep it balanced and not too bitter. Definite alcohol presence. Gives it a bright almost fruity finish with the bite.

Mouthfeel - Sharp alcohol, but otherwise thick, chewy, and delicious. Medium carbonation.

Overall - Solid, easy to get, delicious stout. Better fresh, it should be said.

 715 characters

Photo of Zaphog
4.25/5  rDev -3%

AleSmith Speedway Stout from AleSmith Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.38 out of 5 with 6,893 ratings
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