Miles Davis' Bitches Brew | Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

927 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Miles Davis' Bitches BrewMiles Davis' Bitches Brew

Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
In honor of the 40th anniversary of the original release of Bitches Brew, Miles Davis' 1970 paradigm-shifting landmark fusion breakthrough, we've created our own Bitches Brew -- a bold, dark beer that's a fusion of three threads of imperial stout and one thread of honey beer with gesho root. It's a gustatory analog to Miles' masterpiece.

38 IBU

Added by TheFightfan1 on 06-13-2010

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 927 | Ratings: 3,733
Photo of jmasher85
3.68/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

On tap at their Fairfax brewpub. Full body with tingling carbonation. First impression is that it's bitter, with lots of dry cocoa, coffee, and charred wood notes. Further exploration reveals hints of earthy honey flavor, some red wine fruitiness, hints of roasted malt in the finish. Surprised by the low IBU count considering how much charred and coffee influence is in here. A sipper for sure, and it was a mistake to pair it with BBQ chicken, as sweet as it is. Probably better with something savory but light.

 518 characters

Photo of Blackop555
4.17/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours black. Foamy, short, brown head fading to a ring after a little while.

Smells roasty, chocolate, dark fruit, hints honey. Probably the gesho

Tastes dark fruit, sweet caramel malt, roasty, chocolate, light floral and light earthy. Finish is drier with a roasty linger. Medium to full body. Creamy, soft, lower carbonation. Pretty complex beer

 349 characters

Photo of handmuffin
4.29/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served from bottle into glass at home. Pours deep black in color; opaque with creamy espresso colored head. Roasty malt aroma with no detectable hops. Rich biscuity, toffee and molasses flavor expected of stouts but accompanied by another flavor reminiscent of marshmallow. Velvety mouthfeel with low carbonation. Warm slightly boozy finish.

 341 characters

Photo of rodbeermunch
3.7/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Damn a pretty awesome beer logo, the Bitches Brew album cover. Pours out substantially black. Pretty brown head, 1" on it. Really looks impressive in a style that is hard to stand out, great retention. Aroma is just straight up roast.

Taste, slightly bitter, acrid, ashy, wood and much heavier roasted feel to it. Decent mouth feel that hides alcohol, imparts more malt and roast, stays away from any chocolate feels other than just ones you get from the malt instead of an adjunct. I guess since DFH had the album gimmick, they didn't need to stray too far on this one, yes, I guess there is honey and some root, but those things don't seem to make the beer stray from traditional style norms really. A slight wood aspect in the mouth feel, possibly that root shit. Not a ton of dark fruit RIS notes. Definitely better than average for style.

 859 characters

Photo of tekstr1der
4.21/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2014 bottle. Pours very dark black with mocha foam that settles to a cocoa ring. Aroma is phenomenal - roasty, chocolate, and something sweet akin to honey but not quite. Flavor follows similarly with roast and cocoa leading, but whatever that sweetish aroma is comes across the palette somewhat acrid and tangy. Strange flavor (assume the honey/gesho stuff) that's interesting. It'll take me the whole bottle to determine if I like that aspect or not. A little bit of black licorice comes out in the finish and aftertaste which are both pretty clean.

 551 characters

Photo of Davepoolesque
4.06/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

(2013) Roasted malt, bitter chocolate and a slightly tangy dark fruit. Tastes somewhat oxidized. Super thin. Short finish. Dry. It's OK.
(2014) Richer, fuller. Milk chocolate, roasted malt and some sort of root beer like flavor. Medium bodied. Slightly bitter. Decent lingering finish. Way better than the 13.
(2015) Bitter dark chocolate, hints of vanilla, chocolate malts and some umami richness. Smooth. Nice bitterness. Out of the 3 years, would say the 14 was the best followed very closely by the 15. The 13 was a distant 3rd.

 533 characters

Photo of KevCan
4.58/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought a 750mL bottle from the brewery in Milton, Delaware. Bottled 11/18/15. Poured into a tulip glass. Served while listening to the album itself.

Look: Dark brown with generous, frothy medium-brown head.

Smell: Dark, rich, and complex. Roasted malt, obviously, but also fruity. Berries and tropical fruit? I guess it's the gesho and honey.

Taste: Very unusual. Body of a stout, but with strong flavors of African wood and bitter fruit. Earthy, in a good way.

Feel: Medium body, high carbonation. Savory aftertaste.

Overall: Yet another very unique offering from Dogfish Head. Great!

 590 characters

Photo of GuyFawkes
4.5/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on draft a few years back. From my notes:

Black liquid.

Dark khaki head; minimal lace.

Black licorice, fresh honey, candle wax & tobacco in the nose. Complex!

Thick mouthfeel.

Hint of cinnamon, star of anise, licorice, honey & candle wax flavor. Super unique & surprisingly tasty. Wow!

 303 characters

Photo of Tsar_Riga
4.17/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2014 bottle.

A - Dark, opaque body, dark tan head tinged with brown and purple, slow fading to nothing, with little lacing. A nice looking RIS.

S - Dark fruit, prunes and raisins, roasty coffee and chocolate, and a lot of burning alcohol.

T - Following the nose, with dark fruit in front, sweet malts and dark chocolate, a bit of coffee acidity, and a close that brings the floral hit of honey and mild bitterness in equal measure, but the bitterness wins out and finishes.

M - Mildly thin, for a RIS, but drinkable and dangerous at 9%. The sticky open comes with a dry close. Makes for an easy tipper that can knock you on your a$$ if you do not pace yourself.

O - A nice RIS, very dangerous. Sweet but not too sweet. Rich and tasty.

 744 characters

Photo of BloodSoakedAleMug
4.36/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Look: Black with a two finger, light brown head.

Aroma: Dates, bourbon, black licorice, vanilla beans, raisins, chocolate, toasted malt.

Taste: Smooth, woody, fruity and chocolaty. Bitter upfront with gentle flavors of smoky roasted malt, hazelnut and black chocolate. Ever so slightly sweet midpalate with deep notes of dark red fruit like plums, raisins and tamarind. A silky milk chocolate, wafer cookie and vanilla bean taste encompasses the finish with floral notes from the gesho in the background, similar to a star anise taste but it's very mild. Not getting any honey, but maybe that's because I'm drinking this cold.

Feel: Mid-heavy with low carbonation. Creamy. Alcohol is noticeable but not distracting.

Overall Comments: I was expecting the gesho root and honey flavor to be more pronounced. On the tail end of the finish you can kind of pick it out but it's very subtle. If you gave me this blind I would just think this is an average (albiet an exceptionally tasty) stout with no specialty ingredients used. This just tastes like a very well made, albeit simple, imperial stout to me. Still a very good beer, notes of red fruits and decadent chocolate and roasted malt save it from falling below a 4 but I'm not sure I would buy this again though. Happy I tried it once.

 1,291 characters

Photo of majorbase2
4.27/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark brown color with a big foamy brown, chocolatey head. Decent retention leaving a very small amount of lacing.

Aroma of coffee and chocolate malts, with a touch of molasses and espresso.

Taste starts like your typical stout, but has a much sweeter finish. Hints of honey and a bit of dark fruit, possibly cherry and raisin. Very complex flavor profile, typical of DFH. Very little alcohol presence for its ABV.

Medium-heavy bodied. As light as you'll find for a stout this size. No bite from the alcohol and finishes bitter and sweet. Very drinkable for a stout.

Another excellent entry by DFH. A stout with some unique properties, definitely worth a try.

 671 characters

Photo of Nightmare1972
3.96/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with khaki colored head. Roasted malt and dark chocolate notes on the nose; follows onto the palate. Finishes with sweetness. Bottle was about a year old so next time I would like to try more fresh.

 217 characters

Photo of colts9016
3.99/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A few years back I was watching a program on some educational show and it showed a commercial about beer brewed by Dogfish Head. I was hooked, I sat and watched that program. The details are fuzzy now about what the program was called or when it aired. Sam from Dogfish Head wanted to create a brew for Miles Davis, and this is the said brew. Okay enough blabbering, I acquired this beer a year or two after the programmed aired and now I am drinking it. Poured into my Stone RIS at about 50 degrees. The beer created a nice one and half finger dark tan head with really good retention, after a vigorous pour. The beer is as dark as night.

A very rich roasted malt, honey, molasses, espresso, earthy, woody, bready, caramel, toffee, vanilla, and a hint of floral.

A very pleasant roasted malt, honey, dark roasted coffee, earth, herbal, toffee, vanilla, yeast, floral, and some wood.

The mouthfeel is coating, a little thin, little carbonation, and the finish last.

I don't know what gesho is, but I will be finding out soon. The beer is fairly balanced, with a medium body. The beer is rich with flavors, yet seems so simple, with some sweetness. The more I drink this beer the more I am seeing seeing things that could be better. The body is really thin, better stouts are thicker. the beer is good not great.

 1,323 characters

Photo of Dragginballs76
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours - Jet black nice thin mocha colored head, decent lacing.

Smell - Nice rich chocolate some coffee, vanilla and honey. Roasted malts and an earthy smell I assume from the gesho root.

Taste - roasted malts and dark chocolate dominate, little bit of sweet from the honey and again the earthy flavor from the gesho root.

Feel - Full feel coats the mouth good carbonation.

Overall - Very nice flavor and well balanced taste and smell.

 438 characters

Photo of HockeyBrewmeister
3.56/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

LOOK: pitch black, no light coming through. Really nice mocha head.

SMELL: typical imperial stout.. roasted malts, bitter chocolate, but with some sweetness from the honey. Not sure I detected any gesho root, but not like i know what the hell gesho root smells like.

TASTE: a lot of roasted malts, dark bitter chocolate, and only a touch of sugary sweetness from the honey. Pretty smooth actually. Finishes with an interesting dry bitterness, I'm assuming from the gesho root??

FEEL: very thin and carbonated for an imperial stout. Feels more like a black ipa rather than a velvety stout. I personally downgraded this brew for its mouthfeel for sure, not a fan.

OVERALL: well crafted brew but not spectacular. The taste is actually well-balanced and pleasant, but the mouthfeel just doesn't do it for me here. Worth a try but nothing more.

 843 characters

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

750mL bottle, split with the Mrs., served in a snifter. No date on the bottle so I'm not sure when it was produced.

Appearance: Pitch black with a dense dark tan head. Thick stands and fine strands of persistent lacing.

Smell: Roasted malt, hint of smokiness, and a woody/licorice-like aroma which I'm guessing is the Gesho root.

Taste: Roasted malt, dark chocolate, licorice, honey, and a lightly herbal bitter finish. Very unique tasting stout.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth with just right carbonation. Creamy mouthfeel.

Overall / Drinkability: A very unique stout and I'm enjoying having a stout which isn't a chocolate/coffee/bitter wallop of flavor. Don't get me wrong - I like all of those things in a stout, but this stout hits the style but brings along some other complementary flavors which are not dessert-like. A fine sipping beer and easily drinkable - went well with food as well (Mac & Cheese Lorraine - Gruyere/Bacon base). I would not mind trying this again even with the high cost.

 1,020 characters

Photo of datalager
4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Nice dark dessert beer. Smooth, chocolate, fruit, molasses, esters, and a touch of bitterness. Overall and excellent beer if you take your time with it. The sweetness increases as it warms.

 189 characters

Photo of barczar
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Aroma is floral and lightly medicinal, likely from the gesho. Thankfully, roasty, chocolatey malt takes over, with tar and licorice adding depth. Honey offers perceivable sweetness.

Flavor is roasty, with a floral character throughout, and an initial honey sweetness that fade to coffee like roast at the moderately bitter, dry finish. Light sour notes emerge. Could be malt acidity, which is unpleasant.

 405 characters

Photo of KYGunner
4.02/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This looks and tastes like what a stout should. Strong coffee Flavors of roast, bean and brew. Light chocolate undertones with some char. Some earthy root or bark adds a nice character.

 185 characters

Photo of sandsonik
4.44/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

L - black beer, large sloppy mocha head that fades to nothing
S - bittersweet chocolate predominates then coffee
T - wonderful. Incredibly snooth, the honey only takes the bitterness edge off the coffee and bittersweet chocolate without tasting sweet. I was worried that honey would make this beer too sweet. No discernable heat from the alcohol at all, incredibly smooth. I like my stout to taste more like stout than bourbon. I appreciate that this isn't some 15% alcohol bomb; 9% is hefty without being overwhelming
F - silky, nice

 537 characters

Photo of q33jeff
4.36/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Large Bottle to Goblet.

LOOK: Beautiful beer. Jet Black color, no light coming through. HUGE Creamy tan head. Fades to a cappuccino-like appearance.

AROMA: Roasted barley, coffee, cardamom, nutmeg? or maybe pepper. Very strong smells from the start even though this was poured at refrigerator temperature.

TASTE: Coffee, for sure. A little bit of milk sugars and/or honey. Finish has more coffee and hints of blackberry.

FEEL: Carbonation is strong, but does not get to fizzy because the beer is thick. There is a certain lightness to it as well and goes down easy.

OVERALL: I've had this (empty) bottle in my collection for about 5 years as someone had given it to me, but I'd never tried the beer. Not sure why I didn't think it was a stout until I recently read the description and couldn't figure out why I never tried this. Anyway, the mystery is over. It is a very good beer. By the way, I've added the album to my Spotify to maybe get into appreciating jazz a little more. It's amazing all the different things that beer can lead us to experience.

 1,123 characters

Photo of ordybill
5/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 25 OZ bottle into a pint glass. The appearance is pitch black with a large thick brown head. The aroma is sweet malt. The taste is chocolate malt and honey. A world class beer.

 193 characters

Photo of Bonkinishwa
4.34/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dogfish Head Craft Brewery - Miles Davis' Bitches Brew. 9% ABV. 750ml bottle poured into snifter.

Look: Pitch black body which retains a one finger sized dark mocha colored head from aggressive pour, which settles as a ring of lacing.

Smell: Roasty coffee, honey, caramel, dark malts, and bitter gesho.

Feel: Medium to full bodied with lively carbonation, but also very smooth.

Taste: Roasty coffee, sweet caramel and honey blend together throughout, and balanced by dark malts and gesho root. Finishes bittersweet.

Overall: I'm not really into Miles Davis, but this a pretty cool beer idea, so I've been looking for it. This is a beautifully complex and enjoyable stout; both sweet and roasty.

 699 characters

Photo of stevoj
4.03/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

On tap at brewery. Incredibly smooth, creamy, dark rich roast stout. Black and smooth, just like Miles. Incredible tasty and bitter finish. Chocolate, burnt toast and some coffee, all rolled up into a nice little package.

 221 characters

Photo of pbass0
3.78/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Very interesting beer. Blacker than night. Strong coffee flavor and aroma, yet it is kind of subdued by the honey and gesho root (whatever that is hahaha). Even my girlfriend kind of liked it! hahaha I am not sure if I would buy it if it was available all year round. Might buy it next year, we shall see.

It also doesn't taste as syrupy like some beers do, which is nice.

 373 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Miles Davis' Bitches Brew from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
4.13 out of 5 based on 3,733 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.