Temptation | Durham Brewery Ltd

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32 Ratings

Brewed by:
Durham Brewery Ltd
England, United Kingdom

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by CRJMellor on 04-13-2005

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 32 |  Reviews: 21
Reviews by BedetheVenerable:
Photo of BedetheVenerable
3.91/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Durham Brewery Temptation Russian Imperial Stout-

I picked up this beauty on the Island of Lindisfarne back in May of 2011. The gorgeous, medieval-themed label notes that this is from Gyle #2174, and that it’s best before February of 2016. We’re drinking it tonight as we thought it fitting. Split with my wife into two small 8oz brandy snifters, this pours out a dark brown that shows black in the glass. There’s an immense (surprisingly so) amount of tiny carbonation, which keeps a creamy light-tan head upon the beer and leaves nice lacing. Immediately I get wonderful vinous and dark fruit aromas that, coupled with the high levels of carbonation, suggest that this may have a bit of a wild yeast infection. Instead of being a turnoff, this actually lead to more anticipation, as Boulevard’s accidentally Brett’d imperial stout had been fantastic. Coffee, dark roasted grains, alcohol, and a typically ‘English’ earthy/yeasty note join the vinous aromas to make for a complex and inviting nose. Mellow, dark roasted grains with just a hint of medium-roast coffee flavors meld with moderate levels of dark cherry, moderate levels of alcohol (though it’s not quite hot) and a moderately bitter finish with a ghostly hint of chocolate. Very much in the English style, this shows a nice balance between malt, roast, bitterness, alcohol, and dark fruit. This is just a touch hot for what I was expecting, but it certainly wasn’t aged in the most ideal conditions (and that’s a bit of an understatement). At 4.59 pounds (around $7.12 a 500ml bottle) this isn’t cheap, but it is a really good (and likely, somewhat authentic) English RIS. Smooth body, but it doesn’t feel like 10%; this feels fairly well attenuated. Overall, a really nice treat, and I’m really glad I picked this up, though I’d like just a bit more intensity of flavor. Nice way to celebrate tonight!

87/100 = B Would be a bit higher, but for the price-point

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More User Reviews:
Photo of biboergosum
4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

500ml bottle. Best before Feb 2016. Not gonna wait that long.

This beer pours an eight-ball black, with very slight cola edges when cast in the light of the longest day of the year, and gives up but a thin cap of creamy mocha head, which races away, leaving a perfect ring of gasket lace around the glass. It smells of earthy black licorice, bitter coffee, hard toffee, and some fruity vinous character. The taste is bitter, almost salty licorice root (like those weird Scandinavian candy/cough drops) , caramel toffee malt, mild lactic coffee, and black fruit that's been yuk-a-fluxed (my uni's term for bins of fruit immersed in booze, and the party that usually resulted from it). The carbonation is soft, if just bubbling (not really) under the surface, the body not quite full and solid, but doing the full-on press in pursuit, rendering a smooth and alcohol-tinged silkiness to the whole deal. It finishes more off-dry than actually sweet, stringently liquored up, and tempered further by the aforementioned earthy hot licorice.

A differently enjoyable animal than to which I am accustomed, for the RIS beast. Malt and coffee take a backseat, with a tolerable heat, and earthy root sweetness (ok, I'll say 'licorice' again) stepping up.

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Photo of Sammy
3.28/5  rDev -17%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks for accommodating me Presario. Though I have enjoyed other beers from this brewery, this RIS was poorly executed and very weak for the style. Looked good, extremely dark brown and lacey with a bubbly head. It had a thinnish body and mostly licorice, without the bitterness I have come to expect on both sides of the pond. So-so drinkability, it grows on me. Dextrose. More of a porter.

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Photo of CRJMellor
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours deep maroon with black current down the middle. Thin froth of tan head rises and disappears.
Aroma of chocolate, raisins, nuts and resined hops and some caramel.
Flavor is chocolate covered caramel with a wheat backbone and some dark citrusfruit notes as it warms.
Mouthfeel is a tad thin for style. Very dry finish leaves a slightly chlaky aftertaste.
Drinkability is solid excpet for the little bit of thinness mentioned before.

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Photo of Beer-Ed
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%

Photo of Arborescence
4.02/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Black. Modest brownish head.

Aroma: Licorice, dried fruit, alcohol.

Taste: Heavy! Robust chocolate cake flavours, with dried fruit and herbs.

Mouthfeel: Oily, heavy bodied.

Overall: Would be a good beer for the Christmas season, but almost too heavy for normal occasions.

 287 characters

Photo of His_Royal_Hoppiness
4.5/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of ppoitras
4.03/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle obtained via trade with CRJMellor. Bottle conditioned, and hoofed back from the UK by him. A hearty thanks for the opportunity... Note that the label also notes that it is "suitable for vegetarians", thank goodness...

Poured into a Rapscallion glass, formed a dense 1/2" brown head over the opaque dark brown/black brew. Head fades but hangs on with a combination of small and airy bubbles, and lacing is minimal. Looked like a cask brew presentation, which is I assume the point. Aroma is dark grains with, some vinous fruits appearing as well. Flavor is hearty dark grains, with the dark fruits and alcohol also raising their hands and shouting "HERE!" Mouthfeel is smooth, albeit a tad bit thin for the style, and drinkability is good as well. Very enjoyable offering, search it out.

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Photo of Sigmund
3.53/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500 ml bottle, bought in Scarborough. Bottle conditioned. ABV is 10%. Pitch black colour, moderate tan head. Unusual perfumed aroma, dark fruits, liqueur, some oak, chocolate and liquorice. Very intense perfumed and sweet flavour, surprisingly moderate roastiness, notes of liquorice, hints of tar. Moderate hops in the finish. Not an easy drinking beer, but definitely something out of the ordinary.

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Photo of noyellowfizzbeer
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%

Photo of mulder1010
3.38/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500 ML bottle poured into a tulip

A-- Poured a dark cola color and settled black. Pour got a pretty big 2 finger head that quickly receded to film and bubbles. On swirling the glass got a half a finger that did the same. Kind of expected a few gurgles with it. No lacing except alcohol legs that left a few circles.

S-- Soft,light licorice and coffee smell. Not real imposing at all. Also get some dark fruits as well. Plum mostly. Mind keeps thinking Belgian Strong Dark Ale.

T-- Licorice, coffee and roasted plumbs. A little medicinal but not a bad taste at all. More syrupy than anything else but not overly sweet.

M-- Lots of black licorice with hints of coffee and plumbs. Medium high carbonation and actually a light feel for the style. Hops are very prickly and active. On the syrupy side but more than workable. Soft licorice finish to this and on the dry side.

D-- ABV is well hidden for 10%. Think of this more of a cross of a Belgian style with a RIS. This is not big or massive at all. Pretty easy to drink and for it's age pretty decent. Would buy another and cellar it for a while.

 1,101 characters

Photo of ckollias
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of the4_5
3.75/5  rDev -5.1%

Photo of JackieKu
3.68/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 2.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

500ml bottle. BB 6/2019. Poured into tulip.

A: Opaque black. No foam.
S: Alcoholic. Roasted aroma. Little smoky. Some nuts.
T: Roasted characters come first. Slightly sweet. Finish is dry, with some nuts flavor.
M: Full bodied. Low carbonation.
O: Decent imperial stout. Not great.

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Photo of haz77
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pour jet black with a thick dark tan head. This bubbles away and slowly drops to a thin cap.

S - Molasses, toffee, rum-soaked prunes, figs, coffee, chocolate, honey.

T - honey sweetness and ripe dark fruit at first. Caramel/toffee fill the mouth in the middle, with coffee creeping through towards the end. Liquorice comes through right at the end, before chocolate takes over in the aftertaste along with a hint of alcohol warmth

M - Medium-full smooth body. Soft carbonation.

D - Lighter than other RIS's I've tried, aiding drinkability. Another very tasty offering from Durham.

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Photo of andrenaline
3.74/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours pitch black, paper thin layer of head with little retention or lacing.

S - Molasses and toffee, with some peaty smoked malts on the finish.

T - The molasses, black licorice and toffee notes dominate, making for a very tasty Imperial Stout. Some bold espresso flavours come through on the finish alongside some sweet alcohol heat.

M - Lighter bodied ale that is a bit thin for my liking. Could certainly use a carbonation lift.

O - If it weren't for the mouthfeel, this would certainly be a strong contender for top rated Imperial Stout. If you can grab a bottle, it's certainly worthy with some nice bold flavours. The black licorice and molasses notes are fantastic!

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Photo of BBP
4.3/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Dark black with a slight brown head.

S- Licorice is the most prominent aroma. Boozed is second. Slight coffee.

T- Somewhat the reverse of the aroma. Coffee is definite and the licorice is more of a background flavor. Very rich but a tad light. Everything is much better as this warms up. It gains a lot of intensity and character.

M- Medium to heavy body. Somewhat dry and slightly sticky.

O- Quite good but a hint light. More or less lacking in follow through. It provides a solid flavor but if only it could last a bit longer.

Drinkability is solid. I didn't get a trace of alcohol. It's a shame that this one is retired. I would pick up more for sure, if it were still within my grasp.

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Photo of wordemupg
3.99/5  rDev +1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

500ml bottle poured into tulip 23/6/11

A looks black but with some light behind it I see dark cola edges, fast falling three finger head fell fast enough that I didn't take not of the color and no lace at all

S smokey licorice with some milk chocolate and molasses

T very dark licorice in the mouth with no hint of 10% whatsoever, some plum, date and raisin are all covered in chocolate with some espresso in the background

M quite thin for the style and it could use some more bubbles to be honest

O flavors dead on and other areas lack so it's all how you weight things I suppose, good overall but not by much

complex flavors but looks like nothing special and feels a little lousy compared to other brews within the style

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Photo of Martine
3.83/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of shagal
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of Jeffo
2.03/5  rDev -48.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Got this at De Bierpalies in Belgium.

From a 500ml bottle into a snifter.

APPEARANCE: A black pour yields a 1+ finger, thinner looking, fizzy tan head with lousy retention. Heady quickly fades to a thin wisp. Black body and medium carbonation evident. A light wisp and ring remain but leave no lacing down the glass. Pretty lack luster look really. Black body, but weak head.

SMELL: Bigger nose of caramel malts, toffee and lots of hops. Loads of floral hops and some piney notes as well. Interesting enough, but not to style at all.

TASTE: Follows the nose to a tee. Caramel and grainy malts, with lots of bitter floral hops at the swallow. Some piney notes as well, and some booze is definitely there. Mild but lingering aftertaste is boozy with some caramel malts and floral notes. Not very stout like at all, though it’s far from off-putting.

PALATE: Thinner body and lots of carbonation on the palate. Very light as well. Slightly prickly going down, kind of airy as well, finishes crisp on the palate. Too light, airy and carbonated for the style.

OVERALL: This is just not very stout-like. Except for the feel, this is a decent beer in itself, but it’s a rough example of the imperial stout style. Doesn’t match the description on the label at all. Drink it if you’re in the mood for “a beer,” but not if you’re craving an imperial stout.

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Photo of BDTyre
3.73/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pitch black, very thin sand-coloured head that sticks around, but leaves no lacing.

Roasted malt, wine, black coffee and brown sugar. Light notes of vanilla and rum.

Rich, malty flavour. Big wine and rum notes. Definite alcohol burn. Vanilla, brown sugar, coffee and caramel. A little heavy on the boozy notes, but not wholly out of line with an RIS. This could age nicely.

Low, natural carbonation and a smooth body. A bit high on the alcohol, and this affects the taste and mouthfeel somewhat, but otherwise a fairly decent RIS.

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Photo of Brewer1980
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of psm90
5/5  rDev +26.6%

Photo of Ed37
4.5/5  rDev +13.9%

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Temptation from Durham Brewery Ltd
Beer rating: 3.95 out of 5 with 32 ratings