Java Head Stout | Tröegs Brewing Company

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Java Head StoutJava Head Stout
Very Good
2,373 Ratings
Java Head StoutJava Head Stout

Brewed by:
Tröegs Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: Oatmeal Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
JavaHead is like a day at Tröegs; it’s hard to tell where the coffee ends and the beer begins. This creamy oatmeal stout is infused with locally roasted, cold steeped coffee through our HopBack vessel, releasing subtle hints of cocoa, roasted nuts and dark mocha.

Added by Deuane on 08-25-2009

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,373 |  Reviews: 707
Photo of boralyl
3.37/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours 1 inch of mocha colored head that has a nice retention and laces the inside of the glass very well. The beer is a very deep brown, nearly black.

S - Roasted malts, coffee, and a bit of hops make up the nose. I'm a little disappointed because Scratch #15 and #19 (which I thought this is based off of, apparently not) had much more pungent noses, however I had those on tap and from a growler, rather than bottled.

M - Medium in body, maybe a tad bit too thin on the mouth feel. It feels a little too watery. Minimal carbonation.

T - It tastes very similar to the labels description. There are roasted malts and coffee flavors initially followed by a hint of citrus hops. It's finished with some bitter chocolate and hops.

This isn't a bad brew, but nowhere near as good as I had anticipated after having Scratch #15 and #19.

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Photo of hosehead83
4.47/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a standard pint glass
Deep, dark in color with a big, thick chocolate-malt colored head of foam
Aroma-Coffee and cream, with very faint citrus notes
Taste-Coffee with cream, cocoa,and surprising citrus zest which seems to cut any underlying bitterness for a well-balanced and delicious flavor. Nice subtle hop bite in the finish, but not overly bitter- very drinkable and smooth

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Photo of Pencible
3.68/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This poured a nearly opaque black ruby with dark tan head. It smelled fairly simple like roasted coffee with heavy cream, and some bitter chocolate. It tasted like dry roasted coffee with copper and barley, then semi-sweet chocolate and a bit of lemon. It was slightly thick with a bit of carbonation, and had a bitter coffee aftertaste. Overall this was a decent beer with an enjoyable taste and good body, but it wasn't as bold or clean as I expected. It's in limbo between being a standard or imperial stout. Pretty solid as a standard stout, but very unimpressive as an imperial. Also, I didn't sense any oat, so I'm not sure why it would be considered an oatmeal stout (unless I totally missed it). It'll probably be a while before I buy this again, if ever.

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Photo of GordonQuid
4.59/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Murphy's pub glass.

Black with a nice creamy two inch tan head. Nice thick lace.

Smells of wonderful rich coffee blended with chocolate and black malts. Earthy nobel hops and a nice roasted biscuit also lingers in the aroma.

Taste is a full bodied blend of coffee, chocolate, roasted barley, earthy hop and buttery biscuit. The mouothfeel is extrordinary with the addition of the oats. Deliscious!

Very drinkable. Almost scary quaffable for a stout of 7.5% ABV. Be careful, two of these bombers will make you slur...

Buy some of this stuff!

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Photo of NittanyBeerFan
4.23/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Very little light manages to squeeze its way through the dark brown to black beer that cascade bubbles up very quickly after the cask pour. The head that remains is a beautifully full inch of creamy darker brown head whose retention is phenomenal. The beer leaves thick rings of lacing from the first sip to the last.

S: Fresh coffee springs from the glass bringing with it nice strong aromas of roasted grains and malts. There is also an earthy character of hops.

T: Very similar to the smell for the most part, but the taste finishes out with a mild malty sweetness that I was unable to find in the nose. The hops are also a bit more evident in the taste, and they really add a ton of complexity and character to this beer.

M/D: If you have ever had a beer that you thought was silky smooth, re-evaluate your stance. Nothing I have ever tasted comes close to the silky texture of this beer poured out of a firkin. The beer retains just a bit of carbonation from the pump, lending one of the most slippery mouthfeels of any beer I have ever had the pleasure of enjoying. The alcohol is completely non-evident, and I would try to session this one if possible! This is one helluva good cask beer.

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Photo of ski271
3.9/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Very dark chestnut brown (alomst black) with a chocolate milk-colored head. Foamy and medium-large in size, then diminishing to a creamy light brown film. A good amount of sticky lacing. Smell is of robust roasted malts with a decent dose of coffee. The hops the label advertised are a bit overstated. The taste follows the nose, with sweet roasted dark malt flavors dominating. Bitter coffee and cocoa flavors are helped along by the light hop presence to give it a lingering dry mouthfeel. Some very nice flavors pop out late in the finish. Overall, a nice treat. Worth a try if you come across it, but nothing worth seeking out.

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Photo of Tyrawlings
3.66/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. Bottle poured into a pint glass.

A:Near opague black in color. A cinnamon brown head pours one finger thick and stays for the remainder of the sample. Thick, sticky lacing clings all over the glass.

S:Strong smells of espresso and chocolate. The subtle sweetness of caramal malts and oat. Earhty or damp hops. Soft vanilla smell.

T:Intial tastes of roasted coffee bean and chocolate dominate. A soft wave of earthy hop bitterness comes into play. The sweetness of oat is followed by a ghost vanilla taste. Coffee finish.

M:Slightly slick and thin for a stout. Minimal carobnation. Slightly dry and sticky.

D:Extremely drinkable for a stout. Dangerous because of the higher ABV but addicting none the less. OK for a coffee stout.

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4.1/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This poured a nice coca-cola black body with a wonderful, frothy head. This is the way a head should entice...not only impressive in volume but in texture as well--like whipped egg whites or an egg cream shake.

Smells of blatant coffee upfront and a sweet chocolate. This brew seems to be far more balanced than other stouts that focus their attention to either chocolate or coffee, and it is well done.

Again the coffee is present immediately and burns slowly into a warming afterthought. Meanwhile, there seems to be a bitter sweet chocolate flavor which gives this robust stout a distinct yet subtle sharpness to it. I'm a fan.

I picked up the 22 oz. with no signs of slowing down. This would be a great introductory brew in the stout variety to someone who might at first be intimidated by the intensity of a heavy malt presence as found in others.

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Photo of VaTechHopHead
4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Black in color, thick dark brown head that turns lighter, lots of lacing, no sediment in beer

S - Lots of coffee and chocolate present with hints of hops in the background (floral and slight citrus). Very pleasant aroma.

T - Roasted malts and coffee are instantly present but hops come in quickly. The hops taste fresh and have an Earthy flavor. Finishes with a chocolate bitterness and aftertaste.

M/D - Medium to full body, not nearly as thick as some stouts, "little" carbonation and not too aggressive, and has a semi-dry finish.

An excellent addition to Troegs lineup and one of their best beers in my opinion. You can tell they use their Hopback for this one to add a very unique hop aroma/flavor to a traditional stout. Guess the scratch series are paying off!

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Photo of number1bum
3.71/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark brown, not quite black, with a rich three fingers of tan head. Keeps a thick, full lace with rings of stick all over the sides.

Smells of roasted malt and coffee, but neither are as bold as I would have hoped. There is a good whiff of citrus hops actually, and some chocolate as well. It's hoppier than expected, and overall is nice, but could be bolder.

Taste also has some lightly roasted malt, some bittersweet dark chocolate and coffee, but again the coffee is not as bold as I'd like. Like the smell it's a bit hoppier than expected, with a good amount of citrus hops in particular. There is some lingering chocolate sweetness in the finish and a hint of coffee.

Mouthfeel is quite creamy, medium bodied and maybe just a tad thinner than I'd like. Carbonation is pretty soft.

I had both of the Scratch beers that were coffee stouts, the 15 and the 19 I think it was, and this one is not quite as good as either. It's still quite good, but I enjoyed the boldness of the previous two a little more. If they are going to call it Java Head Stout then I'd like to see them amp up the coffee flavor a bit more. Still, a tasty beer for sure.

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Photo of eagles22
3.93/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: beautiful black body with creamy tan head..very nice lacing on the glass also

Smell:very rich of coffee beans,caramel,dark fruits and malts

Taste: very nice...deep coffee taste with a nice chewy mouthfeel

Drinkability: 22oz is good enough for me but i can definitely session this brew

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Photo of ClevoPiwo
4.15/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a nice opaque black color. The head is off white and stick around for a bit leaving a big successive lacing after each sip.

S: The smell is big with roasted malt, some coffee bitterness, perhaps some earthy bitterness from hops, and a compliment of malt sweetness. Notes of vanilla and caramel are secondary.

T: There is a nice big roasted malt flavor up front, especially coffee, with some other earthy and bitter notes throughout. The secondary sweetness that was present in the smell is much less pronounced in the taste, with bitter coffee and earthy notes dominating well into the aftertaste.

Overall, a good oatmeal stout. The mouth feel was spot on and very silky smooth.

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Photo of corby112
3.44/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz. bomber into a pint glass.

Pours a very dark brown color, almost pitch black that is completely opaque even when held to a light source. I mean there isn't even the slightest mahogany edge on this. 2.5 finger frothy tan head that has good retention, slowly fding into a lasting cap that leaves chinks of lace rings on it's way down.

Slightly roasted sweet aroma with chocolate, coffee bean, hops, caramel, oatmeal and licorice notes. I was expecting this to have much more of a coffee/espresso presence but it is pretty subtle.

The flavor is more coffee forward than the aroma would leave you to believe. Pretty roasty with a nice coffee/espresso bean flavor up front which roasted chocolate malt, toffee, caramel, burnt toast and a nice bitter hop profile. Slightly more watered down than I would prefer but still has a nice silky medium body. Again, this is very hoppy for the style and it shows in the dry bitter finish. The alcohol is decently masked.

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Photo of YankChef
4.28/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured into beamish imperial pint

appearance: pitch black with creamy milk chocolate head, very nice lacing

aroma: really strong vanilla aromas and of course coffee and some fruity tones

taste: really rich and fruity for the style, vanilla shows u big time again, there is also even a citric quality to it to go with the coffee and the oats give it nice body. there are some plumpear and apple stuff going on, nice dry finish with lingering coffee but the java in this beer is not overwhelming just a part of the experience. As noted in another post the bitterness really intensifies as it warms in a good way

overall: a very different beer for the style, very drinkable and tasty with a lot of different flavors going on that meld well, really fruity in an interesting way, layers of flavor my hat goes off to troegs for this one realy quite nice!

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Photo of Mistofminn
4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown, nearly black color with a large creamy mocha head. The head has great retention and it's very sticky. Lacing comes in camouflage patterns, kind of looks like a rock face, as it's very splotchy but completely covers the wall of the glass.

The nose brings a nice roasted malt character, along with bitter chocolate and some coffee notes. Very pleasant on the olfactory gland, if I do say so myself. There is only a light bitterness, but thats fine by me.

The taste is dominated by bitter-sweet chocolate and toasted malts. I get a light espresso scent, but nothing along the lines of something you would expect froma beer labeled "Java Head." Still though, it's a very tasty beer, and I'm enjoying it very much. As it warms the bitterness comes out more and more.

Mouthfeel is thick and creamy, with a low carbonation. At room temperature, it leaves a nice bitter aftertaste. Drinkability is great, I feel I could session this is there was slightly less alcohol.

Overall, a solid offering from Troegs. I'm very happy I got the chance to try this, thanks a bunch to Sean (aka seanpachefddfa) for sending me this bottle!

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Photo of kirok1999
3.88/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly transparent black, nice rising brown head that fades quickly to a still blackness.
Smell has just a hint of bourbon, caramel and a very mild coffee.
This is one of the weakest coffee notes in a coffee stout I've ever tasted. It's there, just not in any outstanding way. I think if someone gave it to me without telling me what it was, I never would have pegged it as a coffee stout. A stout, yes. Coffee, no. All that in mind, it's not a bad stout by any means. It's dark with just a hint of dark fruits. Slightly sweet caramel and just a hint of citrus hops.
Feels a bit carbonated, yet dense enough to handle it. Nice and easy to sip, just not one of my favorite coffee stouts.

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Photo of jrw5061
3.88/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a bomber at the brewery.

A: One of the darkest beers I've ever seen. It looks pitch black even when I hold it up to the light. There was a lot of caramel colored head on it when poured with a good amount of retention. Lots of lacing down the side of my glass.

S: Surprisingly a little bit of a citrus smell from the hops comes through along with the smell of chocolate and coffee.

T: Tastes a little bit sweet at first before finishing quite bitter on the back of my tongue. I can definitely taste the espresso but its not overpowering in anyway. Most definitely a full flavored beer. Very enjoyable.

M: Thick and chewy. Leaves my mouth a little bit flemmy, which is to be expected, but probably my least favorite part about this beer.

D: I really liked this beer but I wouldn't consider it to be a session beer by any means. Don't think I would want to drink more than a few of these in a sitting.

I would recommend this beer to anyone. Give it a try.

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Photo of meatyard
3.68/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is dark, very dark, so much so that I can't tell if it's brown or black. Pours a nice, 1+ finger, light brown head with some sticky lacing.
The smell is, at first, grapefruit citrus hops and then, most noticeably, coffee with some sweet floral aromas (kind of odd but nice).
The taste is deeply roasted to burnt coffee & malt up front followed by mild citrusy hops and ending with a dose of bitterness.
Mouthfeel is unexpectedly on the thin side and I get no sense of the alcohol.
Drinkability is uneven since the higher ABV is well-hidden you don't have the sense that you may get buzzed and the flavors are interesting but the bitterness at the end puts me off a little.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.9/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Beer is dark, like a stout, kind of brown at an angle, but there seems to be floaties in it, probably yeast? I'm not sure. Head is brown and diffuse, can't really get a reading on the carbonation, since the floaties aren't settling out, i'm going to guess this beer is THICK! Smells like a stout, maybe pick up some coffee and oatmeal in the aroma. Not a lot of oatmeal in the flavor, some alcohol in the flavor, some smoke on the back end. Pretty drinkable. Go find it, check it out.

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Photo of bamadog
3.1/5  rDev -18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Picked up a bomber of this over the weekend, and I was kind of excited at first, but was a little letdown overall. Pour is from the bottle to a pilsner glass.

Appearance: Pours dark brown, near black; body looks thick, but not especially viscous (but that's OK because not all stouts need to look like motor oil); comes with a big 3 finger head that is light tan; body is opaque and I can see moderately strong carbonation bubbling up near the sides of the glass because that's only as far into it as I can see; head fades and the beer leaves only faint spots of lacing and streaks along the sides.

Smell: Actually quite hoppy and grassy (not the first stout I've had like this - I had a Smuttynose stout back in the spring that was especially hoppy as well); followed by a semi-sweet chocolatey malty presence as well as a sweeter coffee scent.

Taste: Taste is lacking and here is where the disappointment begins -- it does have a nice bitter-sweet chocolate flavor and that grassy/hoppy flavor really lingers in the aftertaste; I guess with something called "Java Head" I would expect much more of a coffee presence. Just didn't cut it in that area though as I felt it was more of a vegetative bitterness from the hops than long-boiled malts and various coffee ingredients.

Mouthfeel: Body is a letdown as well for a stout - very loose and watery (and I know I said that not all stouts need to be like motor oil, but dang, I need more substance in the body than what this offers as it is super thin); somehow manages to leave a fair coating on the roof of the mouth; smooth carbonation helps the body a long as well and creats a certain creaminess to boost it up from a 2 to a 3.

Drinkability: Not really worth it, so I scored it pretty average. It's not an especially heavy stout, and the flavors aren't awful, but not what's necessarily advertised by the label. If you're a fan of Troegs, you might like it, but if you're more a fan of stouts, I think you might be a bit let down, but that's just me...

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Photo of DIM
3.21/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

a: Completely opaque black body. This pours with a large, sticky, and rocky light tan colored head.

s: Interesting. The first thing I noted was flowery, lemony hops. Doubting my sense of smell, I decided to consult the label. It reads, "Java Head Stout passes through a blend of coffee and whole flower hops-akin to a French press- releasing cocoa, citrus, and java flavors." So I'm not nuts, just puzzled. The coffee is there, gently roasty, but decidedly in the backround. Interesting, but it does clash a bit.

t: This is the first time I remember being disappointed by a Troeg's offering. Mild, bitter coffee flavors up front while the finish is bitter, leafy lemon rind that completely overwhelms the coffee. Very little malt presence.

m: Maybe a little on the thin side for the style with gently fizzy carbonation. The lingering, bitter finish is abrasive and off-putting.

d: I love oatmeal stouts, coffee, and Troegs. Very surprised I don't like this more. I was kicking myself on the way home for not buying more, but one was plenty. Glad I bought some fresh Nugget Nectar, I can't have Troegs leaving a bad taste in my mouth. :)

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Photo of HumanCarBomb
3.8/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

~ Purchased this 22 oz bomber from Big Z Beverage in Huntington, NY. This beer pours dark brown with a nice creamy tan head. Smell is of roasted malt and coffee followed by some light hops and a touch of caramel. Hops make a strong appearance in the taste. More than I had expected from a stout brewed with coffee beans. A bitter coffee taste makes its presence up front, and is mellowed out (only just a pinch) by sweetness from the chocolate malts. The body is a little skimpy for the style. At 7.5% ABV, this is a nice drinker that went down smooth without any problems.

Coming into this, I expected a little more than what I actually received. Overall, a nice effort by Troegs, and will revisit this one again. ~

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Photo of akorsak
3.88/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 650 mL bottle purchased at the brewery.

A: The oatmeal stout is appropriately dark, barely betraying anything in the way of brown hues. The glass of blackness sits still, but poured with a two finger head that has laced extensively around the mouth of my glass.

S: Roasted malts, dark and bitterly sweet, drive the nose. Mild oatmeal sweetness shows up and there is almost no hint of coffee. Instead, a citrusy hop presence is unmistakable.

T: Coffee is present in the body, but as more of a blunt force than a distinct layer. The bitter, acrid coffee creates a black IPA kind of body that matches with roasted, chocolate grains. Oatmeal sweetness tones down the malts before the citrus hops hit with a vengeance. The hoppiness, like Dead Reckoning, is a welcome revelation that adds a floral depth to the stout, saving it in my opinion. I love what Tröegs does with the hops in stouts. Coffee finally shows up with some gusto in the aftertaste.

M: The mouthfeel seems to run the gamut from stout (roasted) to coffee (well, coffee) to IPA (hoppy). I prefer the confluence of stout and hops.

D: This doesn't feel like a 7.5% brew. I'm not sure where this fits in the Tröegs coffee stout trilogy that includes Scratch 15 and Scratch 19, but it seems like a middle ground between the two.

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Photo of BeerSox
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into 25oz snifter.

Midnight black with a thick and dense two finger stone khaki head that settles to a bubbly rim along the glass. A little patch of dark colored head remains from the sediment that filtered through it. Strong and sticky lacing.

The aroma has strong scents of bitter coffee, along with a good amount of roastiness from the malts.

Heavy roasted malts, bordering on burnt. The coffee is obvious, as it should be, along with hints of bitter cocoa. Full bodied, slightly creamy overall. The bitter malts linger for a while.

A good java stout, and not too rich like Southern Tier's Javah. Recommended.

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Photo of thain709
3.98/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a very very dark can tell it's brown when you hold it up to the light...a two finger tan head forms and retains pretty well so you keep drinking through the head...some very nice lacing

S - Lots of roasted malts coming through...chocolate and coffee beans fill the aroma as well

T - The flavor follows the nose pretty good with some curve balls thrown in...starts up front loaded with the chocolate can taste the roastiness...through the middle the roasted coffee beans come through and they show up at the end to provide a's the kicker...paired with the coffee flavor is a bright grapefruit hop not expect that...these two leave a nice lasting bitterness on the palate...there is a few rolled oats that I'm picking up but nothing standing out

M - Medium bodied...not creamy...rather dry...kind of disappointed here

D - This is a very drinkable's not heavy and it has some nice characteristics that stand out for it...I did not try any of the beers this one was made from...but Troegs always knows how to do it

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Java Head Stout from Tröegs Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.78 out of 5 with 2,373 ratings