Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout | Brooklyn Brewery

6,680 Ratings
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

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Ratings: 6,680 |  Reviews: 2,811
Photo of StormKing47
4.07/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed on tap at my local establishment, reviewed from my napkin notes since I refuse to carry my book around when I'm out just to hang out with friends, and away we go...

A- Pours a faint black bordering on dark brown. It already looks like its a little thin, but we'll hold judgement on that one for later. It's accompanied with a dark brown head that is full of a steady stream of bubbles, very appealing, but I have seen better looking stouts.

S- Right away I am greeted with the oh so familiar dark chocolate sweetness accompanied with a burnt malt background. The roastiness of the malts are very pleasant and with further warming I am picking up very faint hop smells that add a touch of citrus, reminiscent of a chocolate covered orange slice. Very enjoyable.

T- Damn, a smack of boozy alcohol right away and a great dark chocolate sweetness to cool the booze burn down. I am also picking up a fruity finish along with the sweetness from the hops that is very interesting and surprising from a big stout. Loving the chocolate finish the whole way through the sipping!

M- Extremely warming from the high abv and definitely coating. A bit chewy which is expected from this style and is very palatable. It's a thick, syrupy, chewy blend that I thoroughly enjoyed.

D- It's definitely able to be finished by yourself, but the abv is not hidden well and it could become annoying as it warms because the heat comes out more and more. The chocolatey delight saves this one and makes it very pleasant.

A nice seasonable brew to enjoy that is great for the cold weather and is readily available at most places. Enjoy!

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Photo of greenmonstah
3.65/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle into DFH snifter

A - Pours a dark brown, nearly black. A bit of light comes through on the edges. Half a finger of brown head with poor retention. Alcohol lacing, which I always love to see, is present.

S - Sweet chocolate. Booze. Some sweet,dark fruitiness. Roasted malts.

T - Some sweetness, very boozy. Some hop in the middle is nice. Only a hint of the dark fruit from the nose. Wonderful chocolate finish. Warming alcohol taste left in the mouth.

M - Thick. coats the mouth and is a bit cloying. Boozy warmth is divine.

D - A fine tasting beer, but the booziness is a bit much. Not much effort was put into masking the alcohol of this 10% imperial, and it suffers a bit for it.

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Photo of Satchboogie
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From notes reviewed on 11/25/10:
12oz winter 2010 bottle poured into a Duvel glass.

A: Pitch black, completely opaque, even when held to light. 1-finger dark tan frothy head that dissipated fairly quickly.

S: Chocolate, coffee, alcohol, lots of roasted malt, sweet dark candy.

T: Bittersweet chocolate and medium-dark roasted coffee dominate the flavors. There is a lot of dark roasted malts present, but nothing overly bitter. There is an essence of dark candied fruit that blend with the caramel/molasses sweetness. There is a little hop character in the background. All the flavors are well balanced. Alcohol is fairly noticeable throughout, though it comes through stronger in the finish. It isn't offensive at all. Finishes dry and a little boozy. This is complex and delicious.

M: Extremely viscous, motor oil like. Smooth and creamy with a thick body. Has a dry finish, boozy finish.

D: While I can't put this glass down, it is definitely a sipper. No problem here. Finishing a bottle isn't difficult despite the ABV, body, and boozy finish.

Overall this is one of the best stouts I've had. While it can be a little boozy, it actually blends in well with the complex flavor and adds a nice dry, warm finish. This is something I'll be looking for every winter.

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

12oz bottle to tulip.
Befitting jet black color with a thin brown head. Smell is earthy and roasty with some alcohol. Taste is intense. Dark roasted malts bring out fig and chicory flavors. Dark chocolate and a warm, boozy finish rounds out the palate. Velvety mouthfeel with a mild dryness. Fairly high drinkability for the abv. Very nice chocolate RIS overall and is certainly worth trying.

2/19/12 Edit: Just had a bottle from last years batch (fall 2010) that I cellared. I didn't do a side-by-side but this bottle seemed much improved over the fresh version. Time really brought out subtle dark fruit flavors and mellowed out the booze. Cellar worthy brew for sure.

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Photo of mrnobody
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

355 ml bottle poured into a Duvel tulip.

A: Pours pitch black with one finger of coffee coloured head; some lacing.

S: Smells of coffee, chocolate and alcohol.

T: Tastes pretty much exactly like it smells but it is very well balanced.

M: The mouthfeel is full and creamy.

D: The alcohol is reasonably well hidden so the drinkability is pretty good.

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Photo of Chico1985
3.97/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 bottle, bought a case of these last year.

Pours black with a tan head that turns to a ring and cap quickly, but retains well as that leaving some nice lacing.

Nose is chocolate syrup, roasted malts, some alcohol and dark fruits.

Unsweetened chocolate is the main thing going on, caramel and roasted malts as well. Booze warms the throat on the finish but doesn't really feel hot. Some hop bitterness is there but the only hop flavor is slight grassy notes. The nice dark fruits in the scent doesn't really transfer to the taste unfortunately, and seem to fade in the scent too. Improves as it warms.

Good creamy mouthfeel, carbonation is medium-high. Still a bit boozy after a year but I don't mind.

Drinkability is decent, not sure I'd want more than one but one is definitely not a problem. This can't hang with the big hitters of the style, but this certainly is a great imperial stout for the value (I think the case was around $40.)

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Photo of Sam21
4.45/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

2010-11 edition. 12oz bottle into snifter.

Appearance - Pours thick and as black as one can imagine. Brown head with good initial retention. Leaves a small collar, but nothing more. Great big legs on this beer and virtually no lacing. Looks like one hell of a stout.

Smell - Big malty nose. Surprisingly, the first thing I notice is dark fruit. Specifically, I'm picking up figs and dates. Also, some black licorice. Behind that is a lot of milky and bittersweet dark chocolate and some alcohol, which I expected. I am impressed with how well the 10% is masked. Roasted malts are also noticeable, but are more in the background behind the dark fruits and chocolate. Very prominent nose that leaps out of the glass, although I was expecting the chocolate and roasted malt to be more commanding.

Taste - Roasted malts hit first with the dark fruits taking up a supportive role. The sweetness from the fruits round out the bitterness of the malts. The finish is dry and full of roasted malt and delicious black chocolate bitterness. Alcohol is slightly noticeable early in the finish and doesn't let you forget that you are drinking a BIG beer. Long drawn-out finish with waves of velvety chocolate and an almost espresso-like bitterness that lingers on the back of the tongue long after each sip.

Mouthfeel - Medium-full bodied with a silky feel. The carbonation is perfect and the beer seems to glide across the mouth.

Drinkability - This is one big and complex stout with flavors and smells ranging from ripe dark fruits to freshly brewed espresso. The chocolate is definitely present in this beer, but does not beat you over the head with each sip. Instead, it plays a balancing role in the overall experience. All of these complexities and high ABV make this beer a great candidate for aging. I'm excited to see where this beer will go from here, especially as the alcohol mellows out. This is the ultimate winter beer that will warm you up on the coldest days.

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Photo of FreshmanPour77
4.38/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed on 11-06-10
Reviewed cold from a bottle to a glass
Batch Winter 10-11

A - Poured dark in color, nice tan head with two fingers of foam, can't tell if there any carbonation present

S - Roasted malts and dark chocolate

T/M - Rich and creamy, dark chocolate, dark roasted malts with a full bodied taste with some bourbon

D - Very tasty brew, full bodied, malty and chocolate and creamy. A brew that went down very easy. A brew that I will have again. I highly recommend this brew

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Photo of otto251068
3.11/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Included as an extra from a trade with drez77, thanks! Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Chimay goblet. "Winter 09-10" on the neck label, it looks like this is almost a year old.

Appearance: Pours an oily black, not much light getting through this one. A quarter inch of dark brown, dense head appears, then fades slowly. A nice dark brown blob of head is left with a ring hugging the glass. Nice head retention after the pour, no lacing.

Smell: Roasted malts is what hits me right away. A kind of funkiness to it as well, not a fan of that. Maybe it will change as it warms. Kind of confused on the aroma, I get a little cinnamon and dark chocolate. Okay, it has warmed and now there is a ton of dark chocolate, much better. Definite sweetness from the chocolate or alcohol. As it warms the alcohol really comes out.

Taste: The dark chocolate is the dominate flavor in front, an unsweetened dark chocolate. There is also black coffee, and with that comes some bitterness, it doesn't come close to balancing the chocolate though. Plenty of roasted malts here as well, with some burnt flavors lasting throughout the drink. Plenty of bold flavors in this one, with dark chocolate taking over. Alcohol comes out as it warms.

Mouthfeel: Huge body with a medium carbonation. The body has a sticky finish, almost chewy. I like the carbonation on this one. The bitterness from the burnt flavors lingers in the back of my throat a little more than I would like.

Overall: The alcohol comes out a little strong for me. This beer took me forever to finish, and it is a definite sipper. 12 oz is filling, and this stout would be a great substitute for dessert, but drinking two is out of the question.

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Photo of davidfoley
3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Limited Bottling - Winter 09/10

Appearance - Burnt Caramel, Ruby, Amber, colour. Good smoke from bottle. Little head retention. Light carbonation.

Smell - Oranges, Coffee, Sweet Malt, Whiskey, Kinder chocolate

Taste - Well balanced, tangy with dark rich coffee and chocolate flavors. Hints of rhubarb, banana, blackberry and raisin. Smooth, mild bitterness with some tangy malt in the after taste. Quite sweet and fruity with burnt overtones. Moderate alcohol presence.

Mouthfeel - Rich and creamy with crisp carbonation.

Drinkability - Good beer, love the coffee and chocolate over tones. Moderate weight, maybe 4 pints would be the limit. Really like it, would have more of this

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Photo of Justin23060
4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very dark brown head which disipates but clings. Little to no light gets through this (just a very slight red around the edge). Chocolate dominates smell. Taste is mostly smokey/roasty at first then chocolate and coffee. When drunk by itself alcohol is masked well. With food, however, alcohol becomes a bit much. Its bitterness is all from the roastiness but the sweetness is well balanced too. Mouthfeel is quite creamy. One is enough for me 'cause its pretty heavy.

As an aside... the bottle says Brooklyn Brewery, Utica, NY. That means its really contract brewed by Matt Brewing, the makers of Saranac... Further proving the kind of quality stuff they produce.

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Photo of BEERMILER12
4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured a nice pitch black color with brown head that fades fairly quickly

S: Chocolate with some big time malt

T: Chocolate is subtle and the alcohol is very well hidden

M: Almost perfect, but a little high on the carbonation

D: I'd probably drink all 4 if it wasn't 10%

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Photo of heebes
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

355 ml bottle

Pours jet black with little to no head, some tan foam quickly dissipates. The nose is strong roasted malt, chocolate and phenol. Taste is heavy bitter flavours of dark chocolate, sweet toasted malts. Leaves a dry mouthfeel in the finish, heavy mouthfeel. Very easy to sip on, impressively drinkable. A great way to bring in the winter season.

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Photo of chickenflea
3.78/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Beer poured black with a medium tan head. Aroma of dark fruits and alcohol. Tasted better as it warmed. Primarily milk chocolate flavor with a subtle bitter finish. Mouthfeel was creamy. Body was medium heavy. A good stout, but too much burn on the finish.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.22/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, resembling a dark dark BROWN borderline black, 1.5 finger head of light brown chestnut quality bubbles. Manages to leave a consistent ring throughout drinking.

Nose and bouquet has a faint malt/yeast but also a good anisette front on it, faint cocoa on the back but not much, very balanced nose.

Taste and mouthfeel is wet, very light bodied giving way to cigarettes and ashes. Alcohol is still present and not hidden giving way to some heat on the finish. If you put chocolate on the label, I should be able to taste/smell it first... so where is it? Also some carbonation in the palate.

Drinkability... Depending on your palate your going to find things you may enjoy, its easy drinking even at this ABV.

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Photo of Kadonny
4.22/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from tap at TJs in Paoli into a snifter tasting glass. 2010 batch.

A: A jet black with no light coming through. Nice sticky lacing with a minimal light brown cream colored head.

S: Wow, I get a large pop of chocolate on the nose of this tap version. Also notes of roasted malt, burnt coffee, and some slight earthy hops.

T: The chocolate just jumps out in the tap version, so much more so than the bottle. Roasted malt with darker flavors then come in with the burnt coffee, dark chocolate, some caramel and toffee sweetness and some bitter earthy woody hops. The alcohol is present, but blends with the nice bitter finish. Good beer, I like this better than bottle.

M: Full, creamy at first which turns bitter, alcoholic but welcomed, carbonation is perfect.

Overall I enjoyed this so much more from tap than bottle. Its less alcoholic and much smoother. A very solid RIS for a great price. This beer is growing on me for sure.

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Photo of mikeg67
4.58/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle. Poured black with a huge, brown, long lasting head. Great aroma is of dark fruit, coffee, dark chocolate, licorice and some bready notes. Full smooth body with dark fruit sweetness is balanced by espresso coffee, lots of burnt grain and alcohol as well. Finish is huge and dry. Great beer.

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Photo of BeerCon5
2.55/5  rDev -38.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Pours black in color with a 1 finger coffee brown head with ok retention

The scent is of dark chocolate with dark fruit.

The taste was incredibly sour at first, bad batch? After the sourness passed I tasted some dark chocolate and notes of coffee, the high alcohol was hardly noticeable.

Full bodied, smooth and creamy, low carbonation.

This was not a very good beer due to the incredible sourness, I probably had a bad batch, if I see this somewhere else I will have to retry.

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Photo of micromaniac129
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cellared one year.

Pours very dark with a deep tan head that is quite dense.
Deep roasted malt aroma with hints of chocolate and burnt malts.
Hop bouquet as expected was sutle.
Definitely big roasted maltiness here. Hints of burnt malts, smoke, cofee and chocolate. Hops are less intrusive after a year but a nice bitter bit is present.
A thick full bodied beer that is smooth with a good alcohol warming on finish.
A fair amount of alcohol and the style in general would prevent me from having more then maybe two.

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Photo of ChugginOil
4.33/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours pitch black with a fingers worth of mocha colored head. The lacing is clinging onto the edges with every turn of the glass. Looks great!

S- Wow. A deep & rich malt is first experienced followed by a some sweet chocolate and possibly some dark fruits. The scent of alcohol is pretty well hidden.

T- Super roasty. Rich coffee, molasses, roasty malts, and of course, chocolate. This one is pretty complex in flavor but seems to keep a decent balance between flavors. I expected a bit more of chocolate prominent tastes but it still makes for a tasty brew. Along with the bitterness on the end there seems to also be a bit of smokiness involved as well. After the great flavors dim, the powerful 10%ABV shows it's face.

M- This one covers the palate pretty well and makes for a pretty full feel. Moderate carbonation also contributes to the quality of the mouthfeel

D- The alcohol content is pretty well masked by the complexity of this brew which makes it dangerously drinkable.
Pretty good stout. Ill be aging a few and comparing them with next years.

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

Here goes my first RIS - Not sure what to expect but lets dive in!

Poured beautiful black in color, which no light can pass through even when back lit, and sat on top was a dark khaki head that stayed around for quite a while and left sheets of lace down the glass.

Smell - Hints of chocolate, deep malts, some booze...the nose on this tells me that the 10% is definitely going to be noticable...we'll see.

Taste - WOW! I think I've finally found my favorite stout! I can't believe that this is is incredibly hidden that I don't notice it one bit. I would have to say I didn't think it was over 6%. This beer is incredible....taste dark roasted maltyness comes over the palate, with perfect coffee notes coming through, just enough hopes to finish the operation. The hops are not over whelming in this and I don't consider this bitter at all. What a wonderful balance for a stout!

Mouthfeel - Very creamy, carbonation is just enough...there doesn't need to be anymore. The beer is great when you get near the end of the glass and most of the carbonation has receded.

Drinkability - It is amazingly drinkable at 10%...dangerously so. I could have a few of these without any problem whatsoever. This is such a great winter brew for winding down a cold winter night. I will definitely be purchasing more of this for when those nights come around. This is the stout that I've been searching for and I'm glad I've found a stout that I like a lot. The combination of the roasted malts, coffee and toffee aftertaste that lingers like the perfect cup of coffee in the morning. Great job BBC!!

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Photo of AdamBear
3.53/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

A-black, thin tan head...almost non existent

S-smells like bittersweet chocolate and a bit boozey as well. Fairly strong and very sweet. Dark roasted malts in there as well.

T-hits with a blast of dark roasted malts and some chocolate undertones. this quickly fades in to a short lasting weird tanginess. the after-taste is very strong with dark roasted malts. its coupled with a classic RIS bitterness.

M-medium carbonation with a great creaminess to it

D-its very thick bodied and filling. i'm not sure if the flavor is glorious enough for the high ABV to make it very drinkable

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Photo of djmichaelk
3.48/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle into a snifter. Winter 2010 bottling.

A - Pours the expected midnight black, with a thin half-finger of mocha head that only sticks around for about 30 seconds before receding to a ring around the glass. No lacing to speak of.

S - Loads of dark chocolate and roastiness. Hints of tobacco and leather. Quite nice, making me want to keep my nose in the glass.

T - Like someone liquified a dark chocolate candy. Lots of roast, coffee, sweetness around the edges, and dark, dark chocolate. Some alcohol in the finish, but none of the earthiness that I had expected from a RIS. But overall very nice.

M - Silky at times, but too much carbonation. It feels a little harsh, almost acidic.

D - The flavors are nice, but the carbonation and high abv bring this aspect of the beer down a bit. I might be able to have another but that'd be it.

O - A good beer at a great price. If this was available year-round I'd probably buy more of it as a decadent treat to have once in a while.

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Photo of busterthecat
4.22/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz into oversized tulip glass.

A- Pours dark caramel, black when in the glass. Slight light brown lacing gracing the edge of glass.

S- Burnt chocolate, roasted toffee. some coffee and sweet figs. some alc is present. slight musk of wet lumber.

T- Bitter coffee abounds, bitter sweet chocolate that increases as warms. Some roasted and dark malts present. was hoping for more body for this IRS.

M- Coffee bitterness is mild and lingering. The feel is pleasant and dry. Could be a bit fuller.

D- Alc well hidden for 10% abv. A good sipper. want to see how it ages.

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

Black in color with a thick dark beige head that reduces to a thin beige cap that leaves wet lacings on the glass. Dark roasted malt and sweet dark chocolate aromas. Thick, viscous feel. Roasted and burnt malt flavors in the beginning, sweet chocolate in the middle and a lighly dry pine hop finish. Definitely a sipper. Not due to the higher alcohol content, but due to the intensity of the burnt malt flavor.

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Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout from Brooklyn Brewery
4.15 out of 5 based on 6,680 ratings.
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