The Alchemist

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Stout - American Imperial
Ranked #1,092
Ranked #2,700
4.16 | pDev: 9.13%
The Alchemist
Vermont, United States
Notes: Beelzebub is an American Imperial Stout. The intensely smooth and rich roasted flavor is complemented by the unmistakable presence of hops. The bitterness is held in check, preserving the flavors of dark chocolate. This ale is aggressively dry hopped with Citra to cut through it all. Hail Santa.
Reviews: 136 | Ratings: 759 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of reitzbrewing
reitzbrewing from Pennsylvania

5/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

From can into tulip glass. Amazing aroma of hops as soon as i poured it. Taste is all stout with chocolate and cocoa. An unbelievable combo of a strong stout, but with hops in background. Great beer!

Sep 14, 2019
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NiceTaps from New Jersey

3.97/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16 ounce can in my favorite stemmed stout glass.

Liquid ebony and just as dense as ebony, opaque. The 2-plus F cap is mocha colored and tapers to a thick film leaving ample lacing.

There's hoppy character in the aroma. There are also some mineral char and light roasted malts.

Charcoal, chocolate, and roasted malt flavor the brew.

Sturdy yet drinkable body. The dry hopping does its job; dry hoppy bite finish.

Better as it sits a spell. The char is a bit strong. Points for creativity.

Jul 27, 2019
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gatornation from Minnesota

4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a thick black color with a reddish tan head. Loads of roasted malts ,dark chocolate,coffee, had a roasted char taste in the finish. Mouth feel was had bittersweet chocolate with a wood char smokey finish.

Jun 09, 2019
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scotorum from Massachusetts

3.99/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Poured from the 16 oz. can into a Samuel Smith English tulip pint.

a: Opaque black with a two inch mocha head which receded slowly to thin surface foam and very dense lacing.

s: Mild roasty malt with chocolate notes.

t; Heavy char in the foam with chocolate beneath along with a moderate hop bite. Bitterness lingers on the mainly charred finish which eventually mellows out somewhat.

m: Medium to full, very good body and lots of carbonation tingle.

o: A powerful-tasting stout with much roastiness and hop bitterness which declines somewhat as it is consumed. As a fan of the big three Alchemist DIPAs, nonetheless Beelzebub seems rather devilishly overdone considering the ABV is only 8%. Not sure Citra was the best hop choice to "cut through it all" but I suppose that was why it was called an American IS rather than a Russian one.

May 29, 2019
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hoptheology from South Dakota

4.22/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

16 oz can from egrandfield poured into Crane snifter.

Chocolate brown with an almond-beige head of 2 fingers, and leaves nice rings of lace as it recedes 1/2 finger.

Rich aromas of coffee beans, caramel, and hot chocolate. Fresh grassy hop. Really really good.

Flavor is heavy on espresso and coffee bean, with slight edging of woodsy hop. Slight smoke, some chocolate, caramel, and more coffee. The bitterness compounds and wells up at the end, with wet grass and more woodsy hop.

Slick and heavily carbonated. Oily resins on the finish with a balanced roastiness.

Overall, a really impressive stout, one that's a bit difficult to drink, but the flavor is very forthcoming. Highly recommended.

May 16, 2019
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TheDoctor from Canada (QC)

4.23/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Serving: Can
No date

Pours a thick, opaque black with with an ample brown head. Very good retention; sheets of puffy lacing. (4.25)

Coffee and bright hop twang, lightly smoky, chocolate, lime pith, roast malt bite, pine. (4.25)

Follows the nose. Rich coffee flavor with a fresh hoppy highlight that shines through, lightening the beer itself. (4.25)

Medium plus body with moderate carbonation and a lingering bitter finish. (4)

A damn tasty stout that both is and isn't what one would expect.
This is a stout-looking beer right off the bat. Gorgeous. A balanced mix of smooth roast and hop bitterness. The smell and flavor are both happier than what I had expected but actually served to make the beer a little lighter in its feet. Both aspects are heavy on coffee and dark chocolate but the hops give you a light at the end of the tunnel, accentuate the malt bitterness, and make it more drinkable than it would be otherwise. It is a nice beer that I thoroughly enjoyed. Maybe a little heavy-handed, but it also manages to avoid being a slog to drink like I find some great RISs to be, so that's definitely a win. I'd certainly have it again. (4.25)

Jan 02, 2019
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Ozzylizard from Pennsylvania

4.09/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Received from @zid – Thanks Chris! Reviewed 12/26/18.
Undated 16 oz can. Stored at 42 degrees and served at 57 degrees in a hand washed and dried Jester King snifter.
Appearance – 4.5.
Body – Dark brown/black, opaque. When held to the light, still opaque.
Head – Large (Maximum 6.5 cm, aggressive center pour), light brown, dense, average retention, diminishing to a four mm ring and a complete, rocky layer.
Lacing – Excellent! Wide band of primarily tiny bubbles with an occasional small to medium bubble thrown in.
First pour – Dark brown, clear.
Aroma – 4.25 – Dark chocolate, char, dark fruits, and hops.
Flavor – 4 - Begins with bitter chocolate and roasted malt, missing the “dark fruit” from the nose. Has a hoppy ending with a long hang-time. No alcohol (8%), no diacetyl, no dimethylsulfide.
Palate – 3.5 – Oddly enough, medium, watery, lively carbonation.
Impression and interpretation – 4.25 – The weak palate is totally unexpected from an Impy stout – much thinner and waterier than the style suggests – more typical of a black IPA. But, since I like both styles, this does not impede my enjoyment. The nose is more nuanced than the flavor, at least to my taste buds.

Dec 26, 2018
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OKbrew89 from Oklahoma

4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an engine oil black color with a monstrous tan head the leaves lacing down the glass. Nose of roasted malt and chocolate. Taste is roasted malt, dark chocolate, and a clean dry hopped finish that makes it feel lighter than it is. Full body and low carbonation.
There is so much good about this. I drank this out of season (in the summer) and still absolutely loved it. Absolutely amazing mouth feel and great roastiness.

Dec 02, 2018
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SABERG from Massachusetts

3.9/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 16 oz can purchased 2 days ago at the brewery, into the test glass
A - Chalkboard colored backdrop, easily conceals the active carbonation. A loose knit froth of mocha covers the surface.
S - Floral nose from that Citra dry hopping, notes of roast malts, bakers chocolate, broad leaf tobacco, are in the mix.
T - Pine , mixed with cocoa, a bit of smoke, hints of coffee, molasses as well.
M - Starts out a touch sweet, then a bulldozer of bitterness muscles its way across the palate, linger is resinous, and pine driven. That's a bold feel , muscular. The body is medium to heavy , not slick and very dry in the finish.
O - I understand where prior reviews ponder why this is not a black IPA, the feel keeps this in the stout camp for me. The hop element is consistent with the Alchemist lure for sure. A big Stout as advertised.

Nov 04, 2018
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npolachek from New York

4.08/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Overall solid beer, but still a bit bitter with all those hops. Color and smell are the two best parts of this beer. Aftertaste is bitter for a good minute after a sip.

Oct 21, 2018
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BEERMILER12 from Maine

4.16/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Pours a pitch black color with 2 fingers of head that slowly fades down to a thin cap that leaves good lacing

S: Lots of roasted malt along with a burst of citrus. Dark chocolate, coffee, and char present as well

T: Follows the nose. Starts off with the combination of roasted malt, dark chocolate, and citrusy hops and then picks up some coffee and char. Bitterness is fairly high throughout. Finishes with lingering char, bitterness, and dark chocolate

M: Full bodied with moderate carbonation

O: A great hoppy stout that is nice to sip on

Sep 29, 2018
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ryan1788a5 from Massachusetts

4.12/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

16oz can poured into a snifter.

A: Inky black with a solid four fingers of rocky brown head. Chunky lacing all over the place.

S: French roast coffee and a deep roastiness register first, followed by some green, earthy, and piney hop aromas. Just the faintest whiff of plum and raisin, and perhaps a whisper of vanilla bean too.

T: Deep blanket of roast becomes the backbone of this beer. French roast coffee, dark chocolate truffles, mild acidity. Hints of vanilla bean and plum. Hopping is ample, and brings a big earthy/piney dimension, which closes out the finish.

M: Very rich and thick mouthfeel. Chewy with a sense of weight that gently presses in. Creamy and decadent. Carbonated well enough that it adds an airy texture and a bit of crispness.

O: A very classic take on the American Imperial Stout. It calls to mind some of the greats, like Old Rasputin. A great counterpoint within the style for their English version, Luscious, which is itself a very good beer.

Sep 28, 2018
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orcrist_cleaver from New York

3.58/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Even after a year it tastes more like a Black IPA, kindred to Carton's Epitome or APIOGERETLA. Squid ink black in color, like the soul of Beelzebub himself, with a foamy, dark mocha head. Forgive the oversight here in letting it sit, but it doesn't really compare to my recollection of the beer that I drank 11 months ago. Currants, sour lingonberry, minty mountain cranberry fluctuate with muddy, charred and woody black mulch. The taste is predominantly baker's chocolate. Very much a bittersweet beer and charred at that; Some coffee and ripe herbal fruit notes consistent with Ethiopian Yirgacheffe. Pithy grapefruit...zesty to say the least. Feel is thin for style, and has a biting astringency on the back. Is this what chocolate covered insects tastes like?

Jul 15, 2018
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Jesterr44 from Canada (ON)

4.34/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

For being called an imperial, I tasted virtually none of the what I call mealiness I taste in most imperial stouts. This was just a smooth flavourful nice tasting stout which happens to come in at 8% ABV.

Jun 26, 2018
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Ciocanelu from Romania

4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Sample at Mikkeller Beer Celebration Copenhagen 2018, Red Session. Aroma has sweetish roasted malt, wood and grains. Taste is bitter, roasty, resiny and really hoppy. Leans more towards an imperial black IPA.

Jun 06, 2018
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cambabeer from New York

4.59/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've seen the comments, and agree with them, that this is an odd beer to classify. It really doesn't drink like an American Double/Imperial Stout... but rather like a black IIPA/stout combination... of sorts. Either way, the beer is fantastic. Huge punch of hops over a very roasted backbone. Not to heavy on the drinkability. Pours jet oil black, with a dark brown head. Hops and sweetness in the nose, and a dry finish.

May 16, 2018
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untitledeuphoria from New York

3.79/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Delicious, but let's be honest, it is not an American Double. Following Beeradvocate instructions on rating to the style, it simply does not stack up.

Jan 27, 2018
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jwhancher from Pennsylvania

3.85/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a snifter glass with huge rocky, frothy head that leaves a lot of dark lacing. Beer looks pitch black. First aromas are of dark mocha, powdered cocoa, some roast coffee, and some light astringency. Hops pier through the dark Malta and make this like an imperial stout version of SN’s Bigfoot. Tastes big & bitter with wave after wave of hops and dark malts. Lots of dark chocolate & dark roast flavors going on. Feels full bodied with lingering hop bitterness and hop flavor in the aftertaste. Overall, a big beer with plenty of hop punch.

Jan 17, 2018
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AyatollahGold from Indiana

4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Beautiful beer. Perfect one finger Mocha colored head with great retention as bubbles continue to rise from bottom of glass. Head looks as if it's a nitro beer. Very creamy.
The smell has a huge hop presence as well as roastiness and even some smoke. Coffee in there as well.
The taste throws you into smokiness right off the bat and once that mellows out the hop bite hits you along with coffee.
Has a good full bodied feel that keeps the smoke in there.
Overall, this is different than expected. Huge smoke and roastiness with a big hope presence. But I like it!

Jan 13, 2018
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Samlover55 from New York

4.3/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

16 oz can into Libbey tulip
 About 1 month old
L- pours a thick oily black with it big dark tan color of foam, that slowly recedes
S- dark black coffee aroma with Big Pine notes
T- dark chocolate along with lots of pine, hints of coffee, and again pine in the finish
F- thick viscous Stout feel along with the hop bite of an IPA
Overall very nice American Stout with the roasty notes along with the IPA type bitterness

Jan 04, 2018
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SpeedwayJim from New York

3.14/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

16oz. can into Night Shift stemware. Shared with schen9303.

Beer smells exactly like marijuana, roast and smoke. Like I'm in the middle of a smoke-out at a pot convention. I've never smelt anything quite like this before. Beer opens smoke, ash and roasted malt. There's some bittersweet chocolate floating about but the hop bitterness and roast characteristics cover everything... plus that pot aroma invades every sense. Finishes roasty with a lactose softness. Body is medium to full with low carbonation. Smooth and rich in the mouth and goes down soft and thick with little to no aftertaste. Very drinkable.

This gets better as it warms and as I get used to it but I can't recommend this beer. As much of an Alchemist fan as I am, I just don't understand what's happening here.

Jan 04, 2018
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scootny from New York

4.29/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This is a bit of a hybrid to me. Is it a stout or a black IPA? Yes is my answer. A voluminous head that sticks around for quite a while. Nice lacing and sheeting of the glass. The head is a dark tan and the flood is an opaque black brown. The overall look is of a dense rich stout.

Nose make me drift towards the black IPA. Piney with lots of roast, and charcoal, there's just enough coffee and baker's chocolate sweetness to keep me with a foot in each camp.

Taste is right down the middle of the two. It has lots of malt. I mean lots. Chewy black barley, roasted grains by the truckload, coffee and light bitter chocolate. Hops are very American forward but not quite large enough to day IPA for me. While a hoppy stout, the hops are not quite big enough for me to call this an IPA. That being said, the hops are well supported and developed by the malt bill. It's deeply and complexly bitter with notes of pine and mint, coffee and cocoa. Finish is long and oily. Lot of lupolin upfront and a mild coating of the back of my tongue and mouth. No hint of the abv in the taste.

Feel is lush and supple. Conversely, it drinks like a Guinness insofar as it's lightness on the tongue and overall quenching qualities. This is one you could either slam or savour as out had facets to appreciate in either approach

A great brew no matter how you see it. Delicious, way to drinkable for its abv. Sophisticated in its construct. I'm diggin this!

Nov 23, 2017
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Tony210 from New Jersey

4.53/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours pitch black with a generous brown head that stays around for a while. Huge hop aroma with some coffee and chocolate in the background. Big hop flavor, almost spicy. Loads of citrus combat the chocolate and coffee coming from the malt, the hops prevail on the finish, then some bitter espresso presents itself after you swallow. Interesting. For me the feel is where you know this is an imperial stout and not an imperial black IPA. Swish the beer in you mouth and the beer seems to thicken and the roasted malts dominate the hops, if for a moment. Overall I really enjoyed this beer and wish I had bought more. I can appreciate the reviews that feel this should be called an imperial black IPA, but either way it did not disappoint.

16 oz can from brewery (9/20/17)
4.5 rating

Nov 01, 2017
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CanConPhilly from Pennsylvania

4.17/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Beelzebub - The Alchemist
American Imperial Stout - 8% abv
Undated can

L - mocha 2-finger head atop a deep black body. Head lingers for several minutes.

S - chocolate, molasses, toffee, burnt coffee, booze.

T - a smoky start leads to a charred, bitter middle. Very little sweetness.

F - thick, creamy body.

O - This is the opposite of a dessert stout. Extremely bitter, with smokiness being the most prominent taste. More a Cascadian Dark than a stout. I dig it, but not at all what I was expecting.

Oct 29, 2017
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sulldaddy from Connecticut

4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampling a cellar temp pounder can poured into a snifter. The beer pours a rich deep chocolate brown color with a large fluffy tan head of 4.5 cm even with a gentle pour. The head fades slowly leaving windowpane lattice as it sinks. There remains a sturdy surface layer through my sampling.
The aroma is rich and roasty and very apparent after the pour. I get some dark chocolate and coffee notes with a bit of earthy hops in the background.
The first sip reveals an average body with fine tingly carbonation and smooth texture. Body is a little lighter than I expected, but in general this is a solid mouthfeel.
Flavor is extremely roasted malt with lots of coffee ground and dark cocoa powder. Beer moves to significant charred malt and burnt wood notes with a bit of black licorice or anise flavor that lingers. I do get a little sap and earthy hop notes that also linger. I dont get any hits of booze on this and the beer drinks very easy.
This is a nice hoppy imperial stout, very easy to drink with the 8%. Would definitely get a 4 pack when in VT.

Oct 28, 2017
Beelzebub from The Alchemist
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 759 ratings