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Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout | Brooklyn Brewery

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2,793 Reviews
Brooklyn Black Chocolate StoutBrooklyn Black Chocolate Stout

Brewed by:
Brooklyn Brewery
New York, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-04-2000

For Trade:
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Reviews: 2,793 | Ratings: 6,588
Photo of CalgaryFMC
4.13/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 355 ml bottle into a snifter, winter 2013-2014 vintage. This one is indeed dark, pitch opaque black with nary a ray of light passing through, with a halo of dark brown foam rimming the glass but otherwise no real head to speak of. Aroma is equal parts roasted, sweet, and floral/fruity, which is unexpected and quite pleasing. Some wood char and dark roast coffee jump out initially, with the latter carrying over onto the palate, burnt toffee, chocolate-covered raisins, and bright floral hops at the end of a sniff, really appreciating this latter element. The taste is well-rounded and mellow despite the bevy of dark malts and roasted grains advertized on the label, the alcohol is almost perfectly concealed (particularly considering this is an imperial stout!) and the flavors are aforementioned dark but smooth instant coffee, toffee, pancake batter, raisin, and baker's cacao mixed with milk. Just the barest tinge of ash at first, although this effect does emerge over time. Finishes quite sweet and here's where one does get a slight hint of alcohol. This is quite thick on the palate but the beer somehow goes down as lighter than it is. Careful or the high ABV will sneak up on you. This beer has won numerous awards and I can see (taste) why. Nothing to criticize here although some may want an Imperial stout to translate as hotter and more aggressive. Truthfully, there is something to be said for such an artful and skilled approach as this.

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Photo of BSDA
4.83/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

This is what you're looking for if you are looking for a beer of this type. Greatly appreciated but only lasted for so long. Getting at least two cases at my local Specs. Great price, case price is around $7/ 4pk. Can't tell it is 10% ABV, hardly in the taste. Smell isn't strong like a coffee so it isn't noticeable from a distance. Drank two of the my first time and forgot it was like for other beers! Same thing goes with the much less-drinkable Blaecorn Unidragon from Clown Shoes. Highly recommended since I just discovered it in early January 2014, now it is indeed my favorite beer to date. Sucks it is only seasonal.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

$ 2.49/12 oz bottle at Vintage Estates in Boardman, OH
Bottled winter 13-14 at cellar temp into snifter
Aroma of chocolate and alcohol
Head small (1.5 cm), medium brown, fizzy, rapidly diminishing to 2 mm ring and broken layer
Lacing poor – occasional small island and atoll of small bubbles
Body dark brown/black, opaque
Flavor of bitter chocolate which ends with a whiff of alcohol; no malt, no hops, no diacetyl
Palate medium to full, creamy, carbonation soft

A very good chocolate stout which hides the 10% ABV well. This is one which definitely could sneak up on you. The rapidly disappearing head and scanty lacing detract from the appearance.

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Photo of patre_tim
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Dark brown to black virtually opaque beer with a rusty brown foam on the top, with lighter tan notes also in the foam. Chocolate milk lacing.

S: Dark chocolate, cocoa nibs, Russian Imperial Stout all the way. Alcohol present, creamy, sweet, tar, black licorice, overall black and dark. Reminds me of Old Rasputin by North Coast.

T: Wow, it packs a punch. Loaded with flavor. I get all the dark chocolate, sweet notes tar notes, alcohol, black licorice, cocoa nibs. Its really umami, soy sauce, a saline quality there as well, and snow, or almost freezer burn. Slight sour, little bitter. Really complex.

M: Thick syrupy bready body, medium low fine bubbled carbonation.

O: Really enjoying this one which exceeded my expectations. Liking it a lot, comparable to Samuel Smith’s Imperial Stout and Old Rasputin Ale. Think I may like it equally to these. Will give it 9.3 out of 10. Got in Stratford, On, but drank in Kunming China February 17, 2014, a year after purchase and on return from Chiang Mai to China.

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Photo of HoppySeb
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into KBS snifter, bottled in 2013. Bottle stored in cellar then briefly refrigerated prior to opening. Pours a beautiful jet black and forms a two inch foamy head that's beige in color. The head ultimately settles into a thin ring around the glass.

The nose is French roast coffee and milk chocolate, quite inviting. There's also a strong roasted malt aroma, followed by a spicy presence that hints of nutmeg. The taste is quite similar to its nose, bitter mocha, sweet molasses and roasted malt, fudge and spicy (chile ancho and nutmeg).

The mouthfeel of this beer is quite pleasant, almost no carbonation present which in my opinion helps savour the beer even better.

Overall - very excited to discover this beer, its quite enjoyable and hides the 10% ABV extremely well. Its sweet yet no overwhelmingly so and all of its flavors are well balanced.

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Photo of wrightst
5/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I left the marks high, because over the years this is one of my "dimes"; a ten out of ten. A consistently perfect beer, and my only 10 in the RIS category.
However, this year my crew and I think they changed the recipe. The hops are less balanced, and there is a slightly more pronounced bitterness to the beer. I'd mark it lower, but that's what happens when you tinker with perfection.

Still, this year a tan, lacy head, with chocolate and coffee in the nose and tongue. Strong alcohol without the burn. You really can't tell how high it is by taste alone. No flavors fighting for the front row. 55 IBU, give or take, balances well with the alcohol and the signature black and chocolate malts, and those hops don't drown out the roast. Again, balanced.
I'd have made it a little sweeter, but then I don't win any prizes. Still trying to clone this one.

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Photo of Mightykingmalard
4.08/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: cappuccino colored head lingers for a long time. Jet black. Completely opaque.

S: smells like a dove dark chocolate bar. Maybe a little tobacco.

T: good full taste. Super smooth. The chocolate is a little too light. Nice and creamy though.

M: fairly chewy. Has a quick finish and leaves a nice semisweet aftertaste.

O: not a bad imperial stout. Wouldn't mind having it again and it is worth a try, but not something I will scout for.

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Photo of MrWilliams
4.44/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

If I'm reading the Julian Code right bottled on September 10th 2013.
Poured into a goblet.

A 4.5 Rough pour created about two fingers of head, which came as a light brown, what I would think of as latte. Some lacing as the glass was swirled but didn't last long.

S 4.25 A bit over boozy but at 10% abv not unexpected. Slight hint of smoke and bread but chocolate and cherries dominated.

T 4.5 As the smell indicated black cherries and dark chocolate dominated but was not overdone. A bit of smoke but not as much as the smell would leave to believe. Very low bitterness with virtually no hop presence.

M 4.5 Quite thick, just what I would expect in an imperial stout, with slight carbonation and alcohol burn on the finish.

O 4.5 The 10% abv is hidden well throughout the glass, extremely smooth. I've had a few chocolate stouts and this one is by far the best of the lot. May be because it's an older bottle but the chocolate does not seem forced as many do. Overall Freaking delicious and I'm glad I stumbled on it.

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Photo of dcmchew
4.41/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Limited Bottling - Winter '13-'14
Pours tar black with a finger of tan head that fades first to a thin cap, then to sticky lacing. Very very sticky.
The obvious chocolate in the smell, but it doesn't completely dominate, leaving room for dark fruit (berries, raisin, fig), roasted malts, burnt sugar and faint light coffee. Smells nice and rich.
Starts pretty sweet, with lots of juicy plums, cherries and raisins covered in chocolate (a bit dark, but not too much). Burnt sugar, roasted (almost charred) malts and coffee keep the sweetness in check and start bittering things up, but not before some hints of vanilla, licorice and anise are felt. Hops don't have much to say, but the finish is dry, ashy and quite bitter.
Full body, sticky, low carbonation. Booze isn't perfectly subtle, but doesn't bother. It all kinda reminds of Kahlua.
Does bring in the "chocolate", really tasty. A great imperial stout, probably even better aged for some years.

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Photo of brstls4drmrs
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A - dark as night with a nesquik color head. Nice ring of lacing sticks around as well.

S - lots of great aromas here. Chocolate fudge with some dark as well, raisins, fig and bits of cream and caramel.

T - big chocolate fudge with some dark fruits and slightly bitter and a bit thin on the finish. Not too much on the thin side but it's there. There's also some licorice dancing around in there as well.

M - medium carbonation and slightly thin crisp not he finish.

O - very nice stout.

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Photo of Dna_Infinity
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle to glass

Appearance - Dark black with no light coming through, mocha coloured head

Smell - Dark chocolate, coffee, dried fruits

Taste - Dark chocolate, coffee, creamy, alcohol

Overall - Great beer that tastes like chocolate. Would do well with cellaring some of the alcohol taste burns off a bit

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Photo of mabermud
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I have been wanting to try this beer for awhile. It is super dark brown with a dark beige head that has legs and dark brown edges. It smells like burnt caramel, roasted malts, faint chocolate, and licorice. There is a smell of alcohol. This beer tastes just like it smells. Roasted malt, slight licorice, burnt caramel, and faint chocolate. Much roast/char. Mouth feel is syrupy and thick. Overall, this is a very good stout. I will have it again.

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Photo of MIchelle
3.88/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

This is a very interesting beer. Pours a beautiful deep mahogany brown, nearly black with a thick 1" tan head. Visually this beer is amazing. It has a terrific toasty chocolate malt smell. First sip it was very intense and I was surprised at how many sips it took for me to kind of warm up to this one being a stout drinker. I didn't read the abv prior to purchasing as I purchased in a mix a six pack. I think the intense first few sips are due to the high abv. It may in fact be just a little to much, sort of throws the balance off for me in this brew. The chocolate doesn't come thru as much in the sipping of this, I taste more of a roasted coffee flavor. It's a good beer but it's not my favorite overall. Perhaps this beer is a bit to cold right now since it's just out of the fridge, maybe as it warms slightly other flavors will come out in this.

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Photo of MonkeyBread
2.82/5  rDev -32%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

On tap part of a 6 stout blind taste test. This was second worst. No smell. Strange off flavor of vegetables overpowering the beer. Mouth feel was decent, that's the best I can say.

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Photo of mpedara429
4.21/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Poured out an opaque dark brown. Nearly black in color. There was only a thin layer of head but it is probably because the surface tension from the thickness of this beer that broke it's fall.

S: It smells like a wonderful piece of dessert. Sort of like a rum soaked chocolate cake.

T: A little bit of a boozy bite, but other than that the dark chocolate is prominent with an earthy hop backdrop.

M: Medium heavy body that is very sticky. Light carbonation.

O: The boozy bite is slightly off-putting but the rest works pretty well. The clarity of chocolate flavor in this is pretty solid.

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Photo of larryarms847
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance is blacker than night and looks smooth as butter.

Smells like chocolate, only chocolate, not complaining.

Taste matches smell, chocolate and lots of it! A good brew to go along with some cheescake!

Mouthfeel is lush and like drinking melted chocolate bars, but enough booze to power through the sweet.

Overall a great offering from Brooklyn, I wonder what a couple of years in the cellar will do to this, well that's my plan!

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Photo of tkdchampxi
3.91/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

This is an excellent beer and a true classic, but I have a hard time giving this beer over a 4.0 considering the quality of current beer offerings.

For a "chocolate beer," this is, again, a classic of the style, but modern chocolate offerings are bigger, bolder, and offer more chocolate.

To style, this beer captures the right right flavor, smell, and texture profiles. What it lacks is innovation, when compared to what's currently out there

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Photo of thierrynantes
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer bottle (33 cl.) purchased from Bières & Chopes, and tasted in 2014.

Appearance : black color with tan foamy head.
Smell : dark chocolate and dried fruit aromas.
Taste & mouthfeel : roasted chocolate malt and woodenness flavors, with vinous notes.
Overall : a nice beer in the style Imperial Stout.

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Photo of brurevu
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I found this Winter ‘09-’10 Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout in the back of the fridge that I didn't even know was there…. I mean I was aging it, right? Being an Imperial Stout I wasn’t too concerned about the 4 years or so of age, but I did have to let it thoroughly warm up before I could appreciate it. It poured pitch black with a surprisingly decent khaki head. The aroma was of sweet deep dark fruits and semi-sweet chocolate that definitely leaned to the sweeter side over roasted notes. The taste was also heavy on the smooth dark fruits and chocolate. There was still a bitterness present on the finish but not as overbearing as I remember the fresh version. The Black Chocolate Stout unsurprisingly was still a full on chocolate assault but it had moved away from the bitter chocolate to a sweeter fruitier flavor. It had definitely smoothed out the edges and made for a decadent drinking experience.

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Photo of BumpyAZ
4.04/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottled 266 3

A: Ink black with about 1 inch of tan foamy , lacey head with moderate retention.

S: Predominately dark chocolate, hints of roasted malt, maybe a pinch of dark fruit.

T: dark bakers chocolate, roasted malt, finishes with some coffee like bitterness

M: Thick and creamy, really coats the mouth. Slightly dry, minimal carbonation.

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Photo of bleedsblu
4.02/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Black as night, creamy tan head very small but not a distraction.

Smell: Smells of chocolate, very nice.

Taste; Feels thick and hints of chocolate, slightly bitter but not overwelming, ends with chocolate notes.

Mouthfell: Again feels thick and very balanced on the tongue.

Overall: I like this beer, waith let me take another sip, ok, I like it well balanced low bitterness, with strong hints of chocolate, and with a ABV of 10% its not your Mcdonalds shake

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Photo of toppoop
4.14/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A - pours nice and dark forming a very small head which ran away quick. No doubt has the look of other great stouts.
S - chocolate dominates the nose.
T - dark chocolate up front tasted great. The finish is more dark chocolate and burnt coffee with a touch of charred wood.
M - coats the palate well and lingers for some time after a sample.
O - above average stout that should age well.

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Photo of lochef81
4.26/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This is my next in a line of RIS I've been tasting before the brutal michigan winter finally winds down. The pour is quite handsome with a near black body and dark tan head. The head lasts well into the pour and when it does give way it leaves a very nice film and silky tan lacing. The nose is a little unremarkable with subtle notes of dark chocolate (duh), coffee, burnt sugar, and rroasted prunes, figs, and dates. The mouthfeel is coating and slightly sticky., but strictly in the best of ways. The flavor greatly triumphs over the aroma. It is a deep and rich blend of Belgian dark chocolate, dark roasted coffee, burnt fruits, and deeply roasted malts. This is an incredibly robust and delicious beer. While not my favorite Russian Imperial, this is without a doubt, a stout that I would come back to anytime. The beautiful bitterness of coffee and burnt sugar last in the mouth for hours after the beer is finished. Well done!

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Photo of SHODriver
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from winter 11-12

A: poured into a snifter to a deep black with a finger of dense tan head that fades quickly to a collar around the edge of the glass
S: on the nose we have bitter dark chocolate, slight roast malt, and a hint of espresso. lots of chocolate on the nose though
T: taste is dark chocolate, roasted malt, slight burnt sugar, more chocolate, and coffee. Swallow brings more chocolate, some roasted malt, coffee, and some slight charred wood flavor
M: sinfully smooth and velvety with a full mouthfeel. Carbonation is there but struggles to burst through the viscous brew and the beer has a drying finish
O: This beer is fantastic. It has smoothness, complexity and good flavors. It aged gracefully and drinks divinely. It just doesn't get much better.

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Photo of tonyf55
3.73/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the 330ml bottle into a tulip glass.

Appearance (3.5): Midnight black and opaque with a dark sandy head that settles into a persistent half-finger on top of the beer. On style, but not incredible.

Aroma (3): Toasty and burnt up front with lingering roast coffee and a light spiciness (perhaps hops pushing through?). The alcohol is very forward and overshadows the other aromas to an extent.

Taste (4): No real "chocolate" flavour, but hits of molasses and a big caramel sweetness. Some minor dark fruit in the background - a nice touch. Again, the alcohol punches through and really is a dominant force between all the malt sweetness.

Mouthfeel (4): Slick, oily and creamy. A nice medium to full body that coats the pallet and lasts long after a sip. The alcohol leaves a nice numbness on the pallet that is both a strong reminder of the beer's potency but also a prep for the next sip.

Overall (4): A BIG beer that will be aged in my cellar for a while. The hotness of the alcohol begs for it to be aged, and I imagine this will be fantastic given a few months to a year (or two). A great sipper that I look forward to having again.

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Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout from Brooklyn Brewery
4.15 out of 5 based on 6,588 ratings.
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