Wake Up Dead | Left Hand Brewing Company

very good
1,021 Ratings
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Wake Up DeadWake Up Dead

Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by elgiacomo on 05-04-2011

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Ratings: 1,021 |  Reviews: 207
Photo of BEERchitect
4.06/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Riding on the heels of the "Fade to Black" series, this barrel aged imperial stout exemplifies all things that are both dark and beer. It embraces the dark deadness and revels in its depths. Wake Up Dead is aptly named.

Its inky, jet black and opaque pour is absolutely absent of light and sucks the like into a depth of dense oily ale. Riding just above is a rather lively dense blanket of foam- tan in its color that's in stark contrast to the beer buried beneath. As the beer recedes, left behind is pocketed lace for a rich and robust display. A swirl of the glass reveals brandy-like legging with a tawny stain that draws in the eye.

The strong presence of espresso, cocoa, and toffee reach the nose well before the snifter closes to the nose. High roast scents of burnt wood- just shy of smoke, burnt fruit, and a general earthy soil scent offers light wood spices and the mild scent of ash to rise from time to time.

A malty-sweet collage of slightly burnt toffee, rich earthy espresso, bittersweet chocolate, and roasty campfire flavors mingle on the tongue with a savory underlay of creamy starch that coats the mouth evenly and firmly. Complementing fruit compounds of black cherry, aniseed, raisins, and currants all seem charred by open fire, giving only a glimpse of smoke and ash to the roast underpinnings. Firmly bitter by both coffee-like roast and woodish hops, the beer balances beautifully to finish.

And with its certain full body, the beer isn't overly chewy or thick- instead the rich taste of malt and protruding alcohol wrap around the tongue with a lush velvety, silky, and sultry feel. It's truly the closes your tongue will ever get to a massage. An extended finish of roast, caramel, bold alcohol warmth, and wood-derived astringency accompany the balance in taste that gives the beer a fortified dessert-like effect.

Dead in its demeanor, the beer is certainly alive with taste and texture. It's "awake" attributes are inviting, invigorating, and highly satisfying. Its a delicious imperial stout that begs for the accompaniment of walnuts and fruited cheese.

 2,095 characters

Photo of cyrushire
3/5  rDev -22.7%

Photo of Greywulfken
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: into a stout flute glass, black beer body (some slight translucence at the bottom), mid size head of medium dark foam slipped away shortly, leaving some milky froth and intermittent lace

S: nothing too remarkable here - espresso roast and bitersweet chocolate

T: nice tasting - but not exceptional - dark malts add roastiness and espresso coffee, some fennel-esque notes in the back; dry cocoa for sweetness

M: a little thin for my tastes, teeniest bit if abv noted; smooth and mellow otherwise

O: so many Imperial stouts, and I've had a respectable share, that this beer comes in as run-of-the-mill. I certainly enjoyed it enough, but it didn't do anything to distinguish itself.

 687 characters

Photo of BlissJunkie
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of Jasonrm72
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of BlurryVisi0n
3.71/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Served in a snifter glass.

Appearance: This is a thin imperial stout, with a dark brown tint on the pour it settles an opaque black with an easy tan head that rose to about a finger's length.

Smell: Light chocolate scent, coming off almost milky.

Taste: You know, for a beer with this high ABV level it stays hidden. Soft chocolate feel, heavy malt with a raisin feel that makes this brew a touch sweet. Feels almost like an imperial milk stout, which at this point is where I think it should be ranked with.

Mouth: This is easily the weakest property of the beer, with an after-taste that disappears as quick as the air you breathe. I mean I like it but just wish there was more.

Overall: I love imperial stouts doesn't mean I love this beer, it's well crafted and respectable. If you have a go-to imperial stout that is around the price range of this one, I honestly would say go for it. If you want to try something new and craving that smoother imperial than you might have found what you were looking for. Salud!

 1,027 characters

Photo of ygtbsm94
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of Ted
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of CGMLS3
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.32/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Average appearance, black and thick with not a whole lot of head or lacing.

Aroma is sweet, roasty, chocolate, dessert-like, with a little bit of hops bleeding through.

Taste is sweet, very dessert like. Roasty malts and plenty of sweet milk chocolate are accented by some coffee, dark fruits, alcohol, and some hop bitterness.

Body is very slick and sweet, thick and alcoholic.

It wasn't everything I had hoped, but it was still tasty.

 441 characters

Photo of jplopez21
3.25/5  rDev -16.2%

Photo of noyellowfizzbeer
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of SFC21
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of BigBarley
4.5/5  rDev +16%

Photo of ChefHopMeister
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of stoney1031
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of Ebb68
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of Lanstrum
4.5/5  rDev +16%

Photo of birchstick
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of Gavage
4.05/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours a black color with a 1" head that falls quickly to a spotty surface foam.

Smell: chocolate, roasted malts, and some hop bitterness comes through to the nose.

Taste: roasted malts, dark chocolate, prunes, and some coffee are the main flavors. Some floral hops arrive softly in the background. Alcohol is soft in the flavor too.

Mouthfeel: medium-heavy in body. Light crispness to start, smoother and velvety at the finish. Long lasting aftertaste.

Overall: a very tasty imperial stout that is a slow sipper but nicely satisfying.

 550 characters

Photo of Syraquse
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of BierStein711
3.96/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5


Nitro brew that was out of this world! Served in snifter: two finger head!

Very lovely!

Jet black with creamy off white head.

Smells of hop, ice, malt, and coffee, but with a little hint of cocoa

Tastes of coffee, fudge, cocoa, molasses, vanilla, grape, and a hop finish

Mouthfeel: Rich and smooth

Overall, perfectly creamy beer! A must have.

 354 characters

Photo of DrDemento456
3.93/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Grabbed this imperial stout for 7 bucks. Love the cover art!

A - A nice deep shade of pitch black even at the base. Head is a nice creamy 1/2 inch of mocha froth. Sticky lacing throughout the glass while sipping is also great!

S - First thing I get is a nice dose of premium coffee that reminds me of "Victory at sea" Under this I mostly smell sweet Hershey's chocolate telling me this is going to be a tasty sweet stout.

T - Bitter yet balanced with a hefty dose of burnt sugar, coffee, and sweet balancing chocolate in the finish. I actually kind of enjoy the bitterness in this one it hides the ABV well.

M - Medium to heavy with a slightly oily slick base.

Overall again nothing to run out and get again and I have better options I can think of but this Imperial stout has a taste of its own. Worth picking up for 7 bucks.

 831 characters

Photo of tswater
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of JustinMatthew
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Wake Up Dead from Left Hand Brewing Company
3.88 out of 5 based on 1,021 ratings.
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