Luscious | The Alchemist Brewery and Visitors Center

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Brewed by:
The Alchemist Brewery and Visitors Center
Vermont, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-09-2011

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Ratings: 611 |  Reviews: 119
Photo of amano_h
4.63/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

My overall impression of this beer is that it drinks like a super-charged, super-thick Fuller's London Porter. A tidal wave of bitter baker's chocolate, jammy dark fruits, cream, charred wood, cold espresso, and that detergent-y floral hops aroma that I've also gotten from Pappy's and Beelzebub, open the olfactory floodgates.

Much like with Pappy's, the aromas consolidate to something more reminiscent of an everyday stout with temperature, but a nice entangled affair of bitter vs. smoky/sweet remains a constant throughout the entire drinking experience. Nose is pleasantly matched on the palate, but with a nice rounded sweetness like one finds in the Fuller's classic; the sweetness isn't quite dominant, as each sip ends pleasantly dry with a slightly powdery and smoky after sensation on the tongue.

The mouthfeel on this beer is, for the lack of a better word, luscious. Gorgeous thick chewy full body, with a nice creamy initial mouthfeel that you don't find too often on stouts anymore. Despite the thickness, there's a soft, silky consistency to this that makes you keep going back for another sip--until you realize this is baby is 9% and you start pacing yourself again.

Whereas I do enjoy the occasional Dortmunder as an everyday beer whenever I find myself up at odd hours of the night trying to fall asleep so I can wake up early like a responsible adult, I wouldn't mind being less responsible if it meant I can drink one of these as a nightcap every night.

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Photo of Yancey82
4.43/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of sjones5045
4.37/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of rodbeermunch
3.78/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Dino for hooking these up as part of our "I'm now too fat to fit into these old school screen printed jerseys" trade.

Pours out of a can and black. Dark brown head, 1/2" in depth. Looks the part. Aroma was normal, you know, roast and shit.

Taste was also normal, except for this slick, mild, meatiness in the beer. Like a rauchbier without the smoke. Soft minimalistic sweetness along with some red wine note. Again, this is all very mild and not obscuring the basic tenents of an imperial stout. Not bitter, nice creaminess and everything despite the heft and big time alcohol, you wouldn't know it from drinking it. Only by reading about it.

 667 characters

Photo of pmarlowe
4.51/5  rDev +2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Canned a few months ago.

A: Pours a syrupy, impenetrable black with two fingers of creamy, dense, espresso-like head. Excellent retention and a bit of lacing.

S: Cocoa, mild roast and coffee beans, and a bit of vanilla, with the balance decidedly towards the chocolate.

T: Rich dark chocolate-covered espresso beans, with moderate supporting roastiness, a bit of cola and vanilla providing some complexity. Very mild sweetness rounds out the flavors.

M: Moderately warming with a bit of heat; this could probably stand to mellow for six months or so. A bit of alcohol taste.

O: A really exceptional non-BA imperial stout, among the best I’ve had.

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Photo of dms1767
4.31/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of pezhead_79
4.24/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of psweendogg
4.46/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of spinrsx
4.04/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Can received in trade with Eric.

32 characters

Photo of leitmotif
4.2/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of wisegreensoul
4.18/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Cubatobaco
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Ciocanelu
4.25/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Sample at Mikkeller Beer Celebration Copenhagen 2017, blue session. Aroma has really dark malt notes, wood and some musty cellar. Taste follows with dark malts, cacao, quite roasty and dry on the finish.

 203 characters

Photo of dertyd
5/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of rjd722
4.69/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of IvoryFoxhole
4.34/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

16 oz. can from late March or early April poured into Behind the Veil teku glass.

L: Jet black, as you might imagine. 2F+ light tan head with good retention, spotty lacing, and a cap and ring that persists.

S: Nothing overly fancy here: just a lot of roasted malts, unsweetened cocoa, maybe dark fruits and roasted hazelnuts.

F: Definitely a cut above the nose: roasted malts, unsweetened cocoa, dark fruits, roasted/burned grains and nuts. Runs a very straight line between bitter and sweet. Only the tiniest hint of alcohol heat on the finish.

F: Medium to nearly full-bodied, but still pretty easy to drink. Very little carbonation. Construction and balance are just superb.

O: A very strong example of an unaged RIS that can compete with any of the top-tier ones on the market today.

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Photo of Uconnelmo
4.29/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of far333
4.07/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Dark brown and opaque with a thick and frothy inch-high head of dark brown foam that lingers long. Rich aroma of espresso and leather, some dark chocolate. Rich and sharp flavors of cocoa and espresso, smoke and leather, some fruity tartness, sharp bitterness seeming to come from hops as well as roast malt. Moderate mouthfeel, even carbonation, good body, very tasty beer.

 377 characters

Photo of StoutElk_92
4.65/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Phineasco
4.56/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Alieniloquium
4.08/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

16 oz. can. Pours inky black with a huge, thick, mocha head. Smells of heavily roasted malt, licorice, and some milk chocolate. Tastes of milk chocolate up front, then strong roasted malt. Dark fruits. Has a distinct European stout profile. A little sweet. Mineral backdrop. Medium heavy and creamy. Been wanting to try this for a long time and I am impressed.

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Photo of cbutova
4.51/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A- Extremely dark and incredibly pitch black pour from the tall boy into a pint glass. The head is pretty much as dark as they come at a dark brown coffee hue. It forms to about an inch high with a thick creamy texture and great retention. Webs of lace cascade down the glass.

S- Dark malt mastery with a bit of an English kick; perhaps bringing this back to the roots of the style. The grains are like midnight oil with roasted barley and black patent donating intense notes of raw barley, milk chocolate, cocoa powder, espresso beans, sweetness, toasted almost burnt nuts and toffee. Some yeast influence just makes it feel English but it is hard to describe exactly why, just an insanely small phenolic hint?

T- Actually very similar to the aroma but the sweetness and a definite hint of earthy hops join the party. Again, think of the night sky or the texas tea as the darkened grains run the show with a glorious spectrum of flavors. Bitter dark cocoa poweder, milk chocolate, medium-dark roast coffee, ashy burnt grains, raw black patent malts, tobacco, fudgey fig truffles, dates, toffee, caramelized sugars, blackstrap molasses and vanilla sweets come to mind. Those dark fruits once again give it an English feel.

MF- Had to write about this first before the taste. The body on this beer is unreal. It is like your taste buds are floating sky high above Mt. Mansfield on some heavenly pillow of cream and fluff. Heavy but gentle. The carbonation is at a medium level but the smoothness is at 11/10. Hit that with some burnt barley bitters and everything is all set.

This might be the most intense, black grain filled beer I can think of. That being said it is in no way balanced but still glorious in its own right as the flavors are just so strong and the body is somehow utterly astounding. If you want to know about roast grains, give this one a shot.

 1,867 characters

Photo of Kevinpitts
4.25/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Solid smooth tasting stout. Lots of flavor yet still smooth.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.49/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

hands down the winner of the four new cans from these guys that my buddy just sent me. its a perfect take on the style, almost better than any actual british example i am aware of, and just a great beer overall. black as can be, creamy headed, and with a rad nose of dark roasted malt but no bitterness, organic unbrewed coffee, dark bread, and an english yeast profile thats familiar but fresher and better and bolder than we are used to from any import i can think of. there is a little bittering hop in the taste, but its actually right up front for me, and the yeast and malt follow it, with a really round complete flavor, dark chocolate all over, raisin for a moment, and the yeast, which is sort of pizza dough english meats a more mature, almost lagered complexion, bold on the grain side of things too, full spectrum, dry chocolate and coffee, licorice spice, four season stout for sure, and not a trace of alcohol anywhere. easily my favorite of their recent cans, a way too good american take on a classic style, and a beer that saves these guys and their new releases for me. i needed this to be amazing and it delivered!

 1,133 characters

Photo of soundaurora
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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Luscious from The Alchemist Brewery and Visitors Center
4.42 out of 5 based on 611 ratings.
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