Tröegs Java Head Stout | Tröegs Brewing Company

very good
692 Reviews
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Tröegs Java Head StoutTröegs Java 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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Reviews: 692 | Ratings: 2,326
Photo of tillmac62
4.18/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

BOD 1/29/15. Pours dark as a starless night. Outstanding head volume, world class lacing and retention.

Rich nose of roast, coffee and dark chocolate.

Light medium body with a smooth texture that is a touch oily and has creamy moments. Normal carbonation with a bit of effervescence in the middle and a fair amount in the finish.

The outstanding flavor profile is intense (roast focused), complex and very well balanced. It begins with a burst of rich roast that fades into chocolate notes over a rising level of sweetness. The middle brings the coffee closer to the forefront over a mild bitterness that has distinct citric hop influence in addition to roast. Coffee is most noticeable in the finish over a receding sweetness and a lingering bitterness.

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Photo of dar482
3.61/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

The beer offers light amounts of roasted coffee, a medium minus roast character with some bitterness of anies on the back. The beer has a medium minus mouthfeel and that follows on the amount of flavor as well.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.58/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

BOTTLE: 12 fl oz. Brown glass. Appealing label art. Branded pry-off pressure cap. Acquired in New York, NY for $2.19. Expectations are high given the brewery.

Reviewed live as a coffee stout per the label. Served cold into a pilsner glass and allowed to warm over the course of consumption.

7.5%. "Stout brewed with coffee beans."

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: Appealing, with `1.5-2 inches of frothy creamy soft-looking foam. Khaki coloured and luscious, with a nice even thick consistency. Complex is great. Sure, it could be richer and/or darker, but it's nice as-is. Leaves no lacing as it recedes. Retention is pretty good - ~5-6 minutes.

BODY: Predictably, it's an opaque black. Has no unappealing sediment visible.

Appears well-carbonated. It's a good looking coffee stout, but there're no unique characteristics and it's not special.

AROMA: Sweet notes of cacao nibs and chocolate malt are complemented nicely by faint coffee bitterness. It's not real expressive in terms of either the chocolate or coffee - certainly, other stouts are doing more interesting things with each - but the fundamentals are there. I'd like more of a roasty java presence, as well as more roasted barley presence. Mild coffee acidity is implied.

Aside from that, there's not much to it. Mild hop presence, no yeast presence, no off-notes. Some cream, maybe? Oats, sure.

Aromatic intensity is mild.

TASTE & TEXTURE: Its higher-than-normal acidity is the first thing I noticed, which accentuates the coffee character nicely - though the coffee character itself is pretty middle-of-the-road, with no rich java, harsh espresso, or masterful roast. The notes of cacao & chocolate malts are interesting and work well in the build, but they're also not horribly expressive compared to the best beers in the style; there's no soft powdery feel to complement the chocolate, it doesn't evoke a rich chocolate presence, and it's subsidiary to the prominent coffee anyway.

The roasted barley is far too masked by the combination of chocolate malt sweetness, unexpected hop bitterness (Cascade and a stout?), and smoothening oatmeal.

I find it balanced, but not dialed in or fine-tuned. The chocolate plays well with the coffee, of course, but the hop bitterness can go and I'm not sure the oatmeal is really necessary. Maybe a more dry, coarse mouthfeel would bring out the roasted barley and coffee.

It's aptly medium-bodied, with a luscious creamy finish that smacks of muted malted milk balls (think Whoppers). This is a very cohesive build, but it's not gestalt, nor can it hold a candle to the best beers in the style. There's a nice marriage of texture to taste, but it's by no means a perfect harmony, and minor flaws (like overcarbonation) hold it back.

OVERALL: I've nitpicked above, in large part due to the absence of any major flaws. In fact, the few issues there are with this beer are quite minute; it is a fine beer as-is, but there are ways in which it could be much better. The coffee and the chocolate work (as they often do together), but if they were both more expressive and intricate, this might be a world-class beer. Ultimately, this is more solid work from Troegs and I'd heartily recommend it to friends and trade partners - even at NYC prices. Highly drinkable and worth returning to.

High B- (3.48)


Gorgeous oatmeal stout.

B (3.58) / GOOD

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Photo of chinchill
3.94/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle from Media PA.

Pours very dark brown, opaque in the glass, with a tan head that has good retention and leaves spots of lacing on the glass.

Medium-full and smooth body with near medium carbonation that seems just right.

The aroma is a nice mix of dark chocolate, coffee and dark roasted grains.

The flavor also has a nice balance, with a modest but obvious coffee addition that mixes with the malts rather than masking them. Excellent sweet-bitter balance.

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Photo of Maxbier
3.9/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark black/brown with brown head. Aroma lots of light/medium roast coffee. Flavor is mocha, chocolate milk, mild coffee and dark chocolate bitterness in the finish. Very nice coffee stout.

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Photo of ZebraCakez
3.03/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Certainly a very good beer, but there are much better examples of coffee stouts on the market right now. The coffee flavors are there but are weak. There's a touch of chocolate as well. That's about it. It feels a little thin as well. Just not hitting the right notes for me.

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Photo of patpbr
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L - Pitch black with a foamy brown head.
S - Chocolate and coffee
T - Creamy with the flavors that came out in the nose, a bit bitter and a little vanilla.
M - Medium to full body with slightly carbonated finish.

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Photo of mikeg67
4.06/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle. Pours black with tall, creamy, long lasting beige head and nice lacing. Aroma is of toasted malt, coffee, chocolate and herbal hops. Body is medium and smooth. Taste is of toasted malt, coffee, brown sugar, dark fruit and herbal hops. Finish is long and dry. Outstanding stout.

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Photo of Mikus
4.29/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Fantastic damn beer. Deep brownish/black with a solid finger of tan head. Balanced coffee, cocoa nose with noticeable bitters as well. Excellent taste. Cheers. Balanced and roasty. Medium to heavy mouthfeel, with residual bitterness holding on. Nice example if a coffee stout. Proud of this PA brewski!

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Photo of Gk187
2.26/5  rDev -40.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Looks great with a nice head. has a nice thick feel of a good quality stout however it was too bitter considering the coffee flavor and aroma was missing or just overpowered by the hops. I would never turn one down however it would not be a beer I will return to on my own accord.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
3.32/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Bottled 12/11/14 at 45 degrees into hand washed and dried tulip
Aroma of coffee
Head average (3 cm, aggressive pour), light brown, frothy, diminishing to 4 mm frothy ring and broken layer
Lacing poor – few small islands of tiny bubbles
Body dark brown/black, opaque
Flavor – not much. Some weak coffee flavor; no hops, no roasted malt, no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate – light to medium, watery, carbonation weak

Appearance 3.5, Aroma 4, Flavor 3, Palate 3, Overall 3.25

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Photo of Wolberjs
4.49/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Troegs. Great coffee nose. Somehow the hops brings out coffee in the smell and taste. Great creamy finish. Terrific 7.5 stout. Gets a bonus for having sooo much taste at a lower abv.

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Photo of Glennlawless
3.33/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Pours a pretty much pitch black with a brown milk chocolate colored 1/2 inch head.

Smell has a roasted coffee bean scent to it...some chocolate and raisin.

Taste matches the beans are most prominent and later on comes in chocolate and a little bit of dark fruit...but all in

Mouth feel was ok..for a stout i wasn't happy how carbonated this beer is...jeez. very bubbly...has a semi creamy feel to it.....a solid beer.....not bad but not great either....i would drink again tho...enjoyable.

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Photo of Zach136
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pitch black, thin tan head.

Aroma/Flavor: Mild intensity earthy, light roast coffee on the nose that comes out more on the palate. Chocolate character also present.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, with a lingering roast finish.

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Photo of seedyone
4.5/5  rDev +18.7%

03/29/13 On tap & cask at Rattle n Hum, NYC.

I was fortunate enough to run into this in 2 versions, regular on tap & w/cocoa nibs on cask.

The cask version was more opaque with a darker richer color to the head. There was no lacing to speak of, but I don't find that unusually for cask versions. The cask had a more pronounced aroma & a much smoother taste & mouth feel. The coffee flavors were more apparent in the cask as well but I was surprised I didn't catch any chocolate.

The only aspect where the tap version stood out was in the bite of the finish. It wasn't too astringent but was definitely more apparent.

All in all, I'd come back to either but under 'druthers', I'd go cask. BTW this is not always the case in my book. Usually flavors survive better from casks but often, since they are higher maintenance, they can lose in the long run. In this instance, it is not the case. A real treat.

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Photo of BigCheese
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Had a bottle on a hot day while home brewing. A lot of coffee notes in this one. Decent drink ability for its bulk. Met my expectations, wasnt earth shattering.

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Photo of crbnfbr
3.85/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Near black, nice frothy head after the pour. Leaves spotty lacing around my stout glass.
S: Bit of chocolate, coffee, sweetness.
T: Sweetness up front, then balanced by coffee at the end. A little bit of chocolate notes throughout.
M: Slightly on the thick side. Love how the bitterness of the coffee lingers on the back of the tongue.
O: Pretty pleasant beer, although I would probably only have one in a session. Maybe slightly above middle of the road for this beer in its category.

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Photo of hophugger
3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Having a beer for breakfast?, This is the one. If you like coffee and a kick ass beer, this will suit you just fine. Medium head when poured and dissipates rather fast. Flavor is bold and finishes with just the right amount of somewhat bitter coffee flavor. Taste remains in mouth for quite does coffee. High alcohol content but well balanced!

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Photo of IronLover
3.76/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Black in color. Poured with a thick, light beige foam that reduced to a thick cap that left sheets of sticky lacings on the glass. Dark roasted and charred malt aromas, with earthy cereal grain and dark chocolate notes. Medium bodied and creamy smooth with light, soft carbonation through the middle. The body thinned toward the finish. Dark roasted malt flavor up front immediately followed by bitter, burnt malt and roasted coffee beans. Hop bitterness kicked in from the middle to the end riding over dark roasted malt. Finished with a lingering, bitter charred malt aftertaste.

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Photo of 57md
3.79/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a deep dark brown with a finger of tan head. Most of the head dissipated but a thin film remained for quite some time. The nose has roasted notes but I am really not getting any coffee notes. The flavor is similar – roast but the coffee is very, very faint. The body is fairly hearty and the finish is mildly bitter.

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Photo of Bone53
3.82/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a tulip glass at around 45 degrees Fahrenheit

Appearance: Black as can get with no light coming through. A one finger frothy tan head

Smell: chocolate, dark fruit, slight coffee

Taste: Sweet milk chocolate upfront with slight coffee throughout. Not quite as much depth in malts as I had hoped, and a bit too sweet for my liking.

Mouthfeel: Quite light for a stout; Moderate bitterness

Overall: Although enjoyable, I don't think its a good representation of a coffee stout. Not enough coffee or roasted malt flavor. Maybe a tad too sweet for me as well, and the aftertaste isn't that great as it's bitter for the style. With better options available, I probably won't be returning to this any time soon.

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Photo of fscottkey
3.72/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Black colored brew with a khaki head that is about 1 finger. The head is fluffy with small bubbles. Head pulls back slowly leaving lacing.

S: Lots of milk chocolate and coffee.

T: Coffee and malt flavors hit early with the a nice coffee aftertaste.

M: Slightly waterier than I expected. Also higher carbonation than I anticipated. Not its strongest characteristic.

O: Decent coffee stout. I could drink more but I have several others that I like better. This is okay across the board but doesn't stand out in any area.

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Photo of TheSixthRing
3.78/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours near black with cola brown edging and a tan, finger width head.Good retention, leaving behind a thin but consistent layer of suds on the surface. Strong lacing around the glass with good stick.

Smell - Milk chocolate primarily, with notes of earth, leaf, dark chocolate and coffee.

Taste - Touches of milk chocolate sweetness upfront, then earth, coffee ground, citrus and leafy bitterness hit hard mid-taste and ride into the finish, backed by a moderate amount of roastiness. Faint traces of caramel and walnut shell linger in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium to full body with fair, tingly carbonation and a velvety texture. Goes down with fair smoothness, though there's a light astringency in the finish.

Overall - A good beer, but with a name like Java Head, you'd expect a coffee bomb... this is not. Instead it's a fairly hoppy stout with coffee character taking a lesser supporting role. Eh, it's good enough. Try it if you get the chance, but don't go out of your way to find it.

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Photo of Shade1951
4.12/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

DANG! This is a BOLD, BOLD beer!

Black, BLACK in appearance! And the smell is outstanding. Just as one would expect - cocoa, and COFFEE! Coffee is big time in the smell.

The taste is of bitter unsweetened chocolate, and bitter unsweetened BLACK coffee. When you sip it, the smell and taste combine to give you a scrumptious experience.

All I can say is WOW! The beer is rather thick and oily on the tongue. If you don't like that kind of mouthfeel, you won't like this beer. I happen to like it - a lot!

But the weirdest thing is this: I do not like BLACK unsweetened coffee. And in truth, the black unsweetened coffee flavor so prominent in this beer kind of overwhelms me. But that is NOT the beer's fault. If you drink something named "Java Head" you should have a good idea of what to expect.

I am drinking this beer right now as I write this. I am still enjoying the various flavors, even though I am not a fan of black coffee. That says a lot for how tasty this beer is!

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Photo of EvoRich
4.45/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look: Poured into a snifter. As dark as the darkest stouts I've seen. About one finger of light tan, which turns into a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Very sweet, sugary almost. Like a sweet oatmeal,blended chocolate and coffee. Very good smell.

Taste: Mmmm, like a dark chocolate coffee served black, no creme or sugar. The light sweetness from the dark chocolate flavor, and the bitterness of the coffee blend very well.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied. Pretty creamy. Not too little, not too much. Just right.

Overall: This has been my go-to favorite from Troegs. Last I was at their brewpub this is what I had. As well being a coffee type stout, which I love. Good stuff.

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Tröegs Java Head Stout from Tröegs Brewing Company
3.79 out of 5 based on 2,326 ratings.
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