Big Bear Black Stout | Bear Republic Brewing Co.

BA SCORE
92
outstanding
2,402 Ratings
Big Bear Black StoutBig Bear Black Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Bear Republic Brewing Co.
California, United States
bearrepublic.com

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Big Bear is a big, black, stout you can really sink your teeth into. The bold, roasty, caramel malt flavor is balanced by Centennial and Cascade hops.

2009 California State Fair – 2nd GOLD
2009 LA International Beer Competition – GOLD
2007 Great American Beer Festival® American-Style Stout – SILVER
2002 World Beer Cup - GOLD

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-05-2001

BEER STATS
Ratings:
2,402
Reviews:
1,145
Avg:
4.13
pDev:
9.69%
 
 
Wants:
183
Gots:
255
For Trade:
4
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,402 |  Reviews: 1,145
Photo of MeganandDana
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Love this stuff. A local pizzeria makes a dessert using this stout and espresso gelato to make a float. We make it at home using coffee ice cream. Excellent. Have used other stouts, but this one works the best.

 210 characters

Photo of Dave2234
4.04/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of jsmith313
3.79/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of puck1225
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Very dark brown with a nice light brown head and lacing. Sweet chocolate smell. Taste is of chocolate and licorice, with a bit of coffee and toffee. Enjoyable!

 199 characters

Photo of biboergosum
3.93/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle - I've oft come across this brew in my wanderings, but never pulled the trigger on it, for one reason or another. Now, of course, it plops right down into my lap (courtesy of my fave local bottleshop).

This beer pours a solid black abyss, with subtle basal amber edges, and four fingers of puffy, rocky, and chunky brown head, which leaves some thickly splattered op-art lace around the glass as it lazily sinks out of sight.

It smells of bittersweet chocolate, bready and doughy caramel malt, some free-range roast, cafe-au-lait, a hint of Scandahoovian licorice, real vanilla, a mixed tropical fruitiness, and leafy, piney, and slightly perfumed floral hops. The taste is lightly toasted, bready and sugary caramel/toffee malt, lush medium cocoa, well-creamed coffee, vanilla cookies, muddled dark orchard fruit (very berry-forward), black licorice, and some down-low earthy, leafy, and piney green hoppiness.

The carbonation is quite understated in its punch-clock frothiness, the body a solid middleweight, mostly smooth (just a bit of that as yet masked booziness showing up to mildly ill applause), and somewhat creamy. It finishes well off-dry, the lingering caramel, chocolate, vanilla, and milky notes ensuring that outcome.

Overall, I'm certain that this was the shit, bee's knees, boss, whatever, back when it had fewer throne-usurping competitors out there, but now it ranks as merely really good, instead of existing among those elite ranks that big-ass American stouts can attain in these current Halcyon days.

 1,543 characters

Photo of TeachChefs
4.73/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Furlinator
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

On tap at O'Donovan's Pub on 08/12/16.

Opaque black with a thin tan head that fades to a thin ring on top and leaves spots of lace. Roasted malt, cocoa and subtle herbal aromas. Big roasted malt and cocoa and faint coffee flavors with faint earthy hops on the finish. A fairly standard but, solid stout.

 304 characters

Photo of bschmidt_37
4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of mrbluster
4.76/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of GarbageMan10
4.02/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Shockey
4.51/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of soco89ziegler
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Oakley
4.23/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Studfarm69
4.33/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of goblue30
4.13/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of GFD400
4.37/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Johng19751
3.92/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Franziskaner
4.13/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Black in color with no light penetration. There's a solid inch of densely packed brown froth resting on top. The aroma is of dark malt, chocolate, caramel, and piney hops. The taste is on the sweeter side with luscious milk chocolate, caramel, and some piney hops to give it a nice bitter finish. The mouth is rich, creamy, and smooth.

 339 characters

Photo of webmanspidey
4.19/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Bruno74200
4.33/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Coffee, cocoa powder, dark berries and hoppy. Balanced between the roasty and nutty malts and the oily hops. Very drinkable, doesn't seem like a double stout, it's not boozy at all. It could easily be a session beer, but watch out. Dry and smooth mouthfeel

 256 characters

Photo of SlightlyGrey
4.08/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Joeperl47
3.52/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of JNPIII127
4.32/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of MattyG85
4.49/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a chalice.

Appearance: Pours midnight black with a moderate amount of bubbles. Solid finger of tan head which settles into a thin creamy layer.

Smell: A roasty and rich dark malt driven aroma with a scent of chocolate, coffee, and caramel. Dark roasted barley malt with a scent of chocolate, coffee, caramel, toffee, toast, biscuit, and nuts with yeast. Sweet hints of vanilla and molasses. Nice hints of licorice along with some dark fruit hints of raisin, fig, and prune. Also some hints of earthy hops. A very solid aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a roasty and rich dark malt driven taste with notes of chocolate, coffee, and caramel. Dark roasted barley malt with notes of chocolate, coffee, caramel, toffee, biscuit, toast, and nuts along with some yeast. Sweet taste of molasses and some vanilla. Some good notes of black licorice. Dark fruit notes of raisin, prune, and fig. Background notes of earthy hops. A very nice taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied with a moderate level of carbonation. Creamy, chewy, and pretty smooth with a drying finish.

Overall: A very good Imperial Stout. Good roasty malt notes with some nice licorice and dark fruit undertones.

 1,209 characters

Photo of 8BaconBits
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big Bear Black Stout from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
4.13 out of 5 based on 2,402 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.

    Subscribe