Imperial Stout | Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S

886 Ratings
Imperial StoutImperial Stout

Brewed by:
Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
23°P,75 IBU.

Ingredients: Maris Otter, Munich, roasted barley, oat, black, and chocolate malt; Columbus and Crystal hops; English ale yeast, and our local Grimstad water.

Added by Sigmund on 02-08-2006

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Ratings: 886 |  Reviews: 520
Photo of cleverbeername
3.96/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

found old chiken scratch notes, tasted and retasted hours later, then did notes

Drank out of bordeaux glass

A 2 fingers, nice lace with corderoy tan color, pretty much inky black

S subtle, hints of coffee and malt

T coffee, toffee, heavy roasted malt, light smokeyness

M rich and coating, not too abrasive. creams out later on

D lingers on palate, subtle, complex, long and sort of perplexing.

A nice Euro example of style

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Photo of stephens101
4.12/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A bubbly and airy dark tan head sits atop an impenetrably black brew. A few tiny bubbles cling to the side of the glass, from top to bottom, popping here and there. The head fades somewhat quickly and leaves a composition of lines and spots behind.

Aroma consists of bitter chocolates, deep caramel malts, some unexpected vinegar notes, some wet, burnt wood and subtle hop notes to finish. Unique overall to the nose, and promising.

The first thing I notice on the palate is how creamy and open this beer the beer is. Immediately following that I notice a striking hoppiness, backed up by dark chocolates, toasted malts, more burnt wood and a subtle sweetness that mixes in rebellious.

Alcohol heat is barely noticeable, and body is medium to full, but weighs light on the stomach. Excellent RIS which presents it's own distinct qualities that help raise its stature.

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Photo of StJamesGate
4.08/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours impenetrable black with the slightest garnet highlights at the edges and a stiff cappuccino brown head that leaves light lace and rings. Nose is cinnamon, wood smoke and chocolate syrup. Espresso grounds up front along with a bit of burnt toast, heavy treacle comes down in the middle, and herbal Ricola-like hops at the end. Tight, tingling finish with long sour linger. Huge body, viscous and creamy. No burn.

Not the most complex - somehow I expected more from such a high rep brewer. Still, can't fault it; a top RIS.

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Photo of Wiessmonkey
3.96/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

server at 54 degrees in a goblet, the bottle had been opened but recapped and put in the fridge for about 4 hours.
A. inky, muddy
S. just a lot of dark malt a little smoke
T. dark, smokey, good acid front to back, a "fresh" drip coffe taste towards the end with a crisp abrupt finish almost sappy
M. medium coating and a little gritty
D. I liked this but didn't love it it was simple and clean but not what i look for specifically in an russian imperial stout

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Photo of darklordlager
3.8/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired at Jake's Liquor on the Lake Michigan coast August of 2009. Not quite sure how long it sat there.
Tasted side-by-side with De Struise Black Albert

A:Pours a very dark opaque brown (for some reason I don't want to label it black--might be the emphasis on the dark brown head), with a coating of deep brown foam.

S: Roasted malt is the first observation, intertwined with a bitter dark chocolate scent. Cake batter lingers in the background, with caramel and a hint of vanilla. Hard to tell if the bitterness is from the hops, or the roasted malt. As it warms, I can detect a "raw barley" scent in there as well.

T: Nice and roasty smooth. A little more dark fruit in the taste, as the alcohol works its way out to meet the roasted malt and bitterness. Dark chocolate pops out at different periods, but this one is carried along by the roasted malt and bitterness. Alcohol is only minutely noticeable in the finish. Roasty chocolate flavour pokes its head back in deep into the finish. As it warms the roasted malt becomes almost overpowering...

M: Creamy, while yet retaining a medium-to-light mouthfeel.

D: A well done RIS. Maybe a tad more up front with the roasted malt than I prefer, but the alcohol is very well hidden and it drinks like something of substantially less ABV.

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Photo of LittleBug31
3.58/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Nogne Imperial Stout-

Appearance: Dark, dark black with rich brown edges that glow when held up to a light. Chestnutty brown layer of sparkly foam- 1/2 or so of finely bubbled head.

Smell: Fills my nose with a light coffee bean aroma mixed heavily with a roasty-dark chocolate. Hints of almond and toasted walnuts. Reminds me of my mom's dark chocolate and caramel turtle cake!

Taste: Bitter! Creamy vanilla-nutty combo. BOLD- roasty, walnutty flavor, smothered in the riches cacao beans. Taste matches the cake mentioned above. A bit strong on the alcohol taste for me. Very bitter aftertaste that sticks for quite a while.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, tingly bubbles. Thick and rich. Velvety from first taste to swallow.

Drinkability: A bit too bold for my taste buds. Such a strong flavor combination mixed with intense alcohol makes me glad my boyfriend only poured me a small glass!

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Photo of kingcrowing
4.33/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle poured into an Allagash tulip.

Pours out like motor oil - black, viscous, slightly red. No head at first, then slowly a big, thick two finger head that's really thick and creamy with very dark brown coloring - almost like chocolate milk. Nose is rich and sweet - dark chocolate, dark coffee, roasted turkey? very malty. Has a noticeable amount of booze as well.

This mouthfeel is very light and watery for an Imperial Stout, however it's very nice - similar to maybe an American brown ale. still rich and thick but not syrupy or sticky. Has a light carbonation that makes it very drinkable. Leaves a roasty finish with some nice chocolatey hints as well.

Excellent RIS, one of my favorite and the first beer I've had from Nogne O. I've got their dark horizon still sitting in my cellar, now I'm really excited for it!

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Photo of Patrick999
4.16/5  rDev +1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured into my DFH glass. Looks really viscous and is extremely dark. Even when held to the light, nothing got through. Excellent cascading head. All I can say is Wow.

S - Aroma is of coffee, chocolate, ripe blueberries.

T - Taste is nothing too crazy. Your standard imperial stout array of chocolate, roasted coffee, slight anise, slight blueberry. It is appropriately rich, and definitely has good bitter-sweet balance, being neither overly charred/roasted nor overly sweet. Alcohol is very hidden.

F - Full bodied and somewhat creamy.

D - This is a solid, perfectly enjoyable stout. While it isn't too crazy, it does hit all the right marks. I can see it sitting well with many foods, as well as being really easy to drink by itself.

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Photo of mdcrouser
4.42/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Black like a Norwegian night with a thick layer of atmospheric head, a proverbial tan starry sky for this beer.

A big, powerful nose pushes-forth bitter chocolate, licorice, and burnt malts - pretty complex.

Super heavy chocolate, it actually reminds me of a highly-condensed Oreo, summoning the bitterness to the tongue, while still being a bit biscuity. That makes for an interesting combination in this medium.

Incredible mouthfeel - perfect balance of malts, outstanding flavors and carbonation, it rolls onto the tongue like a dark snowfall - light, airy, and it really builds up.

The only detractor is a bit of alcohol on the tongue - otherwise, this a great seasonal sipper.

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Photo of Aenema
3.82/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours black with a thin brown head with splotchy lacing.
Smell - Lots of roasted malts and some coffee/chocolate notes.
Taste - Similar to the nose; roasted malt flavor with chocolate and coffee notes balanced with a solid hop backbone. Still, this beer felt off to me; like flavors were missing or not as intense as they should have been.
Mouthfeel - Medium to full bodied with moderate to light carbonation. This beer was a bit thinner than I anticipated.
Drinkability - Enjoyable beer, but I found it underwhelming.

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Photo of maximum12
3.97/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up this beer over a year ago, don't quite recall when, but in my continuing quest to clean up the cellar/fridge it's going down! Plus, it matches my desire for something dark & cranky as a prelude to an episode of House M.D.

16.9 oz. poured into my sweet New Belgium goblet. Black. Bubbles in a satisfactory matter. Smell is dominated by sweet malts with a whiff of coffee & what seems to be rye (which I don't think is in the beer...).

Nøgne Ø is...pretty bland. I mean, there are all the obligatory malts. A rather pedestrian chocolate, like a store-brand you'd find in a drug-store in Alabama. The sweet malts blend into the dull chocolate, with only a nod towards the underlying coffee & a binocular sighting of bitterness. Mouthfeel is probably the highlight, silky & smooth, easy to sip next to the roaring (natural gas) fireplace. The smoothness, & relative lack of strength leaping out of the glass, lends it an air of drinkability, too.

This is a good beer. Perhaps I shouldn't have said 'bland' which has some negative connotations...more like...smooth. Inoffensive. Solid. I don't know. It's good, & by bland I don't mean dull at all. Just smooth. Easy to drink. Not every beer has to be wild & crazy. Huh.

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Photo of dasenebler
3.91/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

16.9 oz. bottle into snifter.

Pours a typical opaque black. Head is minimal, but has a very dark, chocolate mousse-like color.

Aroma is not too inspiring: faint dark fruit, bitter chocolate.

Flavor, however, is excellent. Hugely roasty and tangy from the large roasted malt presence. Definitely a stout for coffee and bitter chocolate lovers (like me!). Reminds me of a stronger Samuel Smith RIS. It's a touch sweeter, but has that same dry stout profile. Bitter aftertaste with a touch of hoppy tang. Mouthfeel was a little too carbonated for me, which took away from silky smoothness underneath. Very drinkable for a 9 percenter.

This is an excellent stout, but not the complete package in an imperial world.

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Photo of beveritt
4.08/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: Poured from a brown bomber into a Duvel chalice. Label is very simple; black with a purple O.

Appearance: Pours with 2 fingers of dark brown head. This settles extremely slowly, eventually dropping to a 1/4 inch coating of foam. As the head collapses, it lightens to a medium tan. Fair lacing. The beer itself is very dark brown and completely opaque. Thick sludge remains in the bottle.

Smell: Bitter coffee with undertones of dark cherries. Slightly sweet alcohol aroma.

Taste: Unsweetened cocoa flavors upfront, with a mild and slight note of lactose sweetness. Roasted barley with hints of a wheat-like sourness. Finishes with a long and lingering coffee bitterness. Warming alcohol feel, but otherwise hidden well.

Mouthfeel: Average carbonation level. Body is very good.

Drinkability: A good sipper, but nothing mind blowing. With so many other great options out there, I probably won't be seeking this one out again.

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Photo of Twitchsey
3.96/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pours a completely opaque, black, with a dark brown foam hat quickly dissipates. Lacing doesnt stick around too long either, but it sure looks good.

Initial smell is that of dark roasted malts. Heavy in coffee and chocolate tones and definitely has a bit of sweetness, like a note of dark chocolate to it.

Flavor is a sharp sweetness right at the beginning followed by a strong note of coffee, and ending with a bitter, chocolate note. fulled bodied and medium carbonation, smooth as it goes down, and quite delicious.

Overall, very impressed with this one, its on my list to get a few more and try cellaring it for a while.

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Photo of rapidsequence
3.9/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

16.9 oz bottle. $9.

Appearance: Completely opaque. Brown head forms with a vigorous pour and fades quickly. Nice lacing, but it falls quickly.

Smell: Big roasted malts. Chocolate and coffee. Licorice.

Taste: Slightly sweet up front with nice chocolate. As it goes down you get more coffee and it becomes bitter-- more bitter roastiness than hops. The finish is very bitter with dark roasted malt, almost like charcoal. Overall the bitter outlasts the sweet, which would be fine, but the charcoal taste, even though its not overpowering, is a bit much.

Mouthfeel: Pretty full and a little creamy. Less full than some great RISs.

Drinkability: This is a very good beer, but not an excellent RIS. There are better beers in this style. I prefer a bigger mouthfeel, and more sweet over bitter. Its not cheap, and these 16.9 oz bottles from Norway are annoying.

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Photo of Cylinsier
4.15/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a pint bottle.

Pours a jet black oily color that lets no light through. Head is thin, fine and nutty brown.

Smells of brown sugar, figs and molasses. There's a hint of moist smokiness to it.

Tastes molasses sweet and charcoal a good way. There's a bit of nutty bitterness at the end.

Feels thick and syrupy with a very mild carbonation tinge.

A very good beer. There are maybe a couple other RIAs I'd put ahead of this one, but only a couple. A bit on the smokey, drier side among RIAs. An easy sipper though and very filling. A must for RIA fans.

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Photo of Dogbrick
4.55/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Sample at the Most Honorable SuperHappyFun Stout Tasting. This beer pours black as a shark's eye with a medium light brown head that diminshes slowly. Thick rings of lacing on the glass. The aroma is roasted malt, oak, and bittersweet chocolate. Rich, smooth body with flavors of burnt malt, coffee and dark chocolate. Some hops and alcohol are present as well. The finish is roasty with a pleasant coffee aftertaste. Very good overall.

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Photo of laituegonflable
4.28/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours black as night. Held right up to intense halogen lighting, gives a very slight potential hit of dark mahogany brown, but seriously it's dark. Head is actual dark brown, made up of large uneven bubbles but very large, leaves some nice webs of lace behind and sinks in a bubble-popping style. It's a magnificent-looking beer.

Nose is deep and rich with large over-roasted characters, no espresso but large dark chocolate and cocoa characters, plus a lot of deep spice notes - aniseed and black pepper, hints of mint and menthol, pretty amazing and very enjoyable nose.

Taste is pretty intense and deep. Strong dark cocoa and chocolate flavours on the front palate give way to some very dark burnt characters on the back that give off a nice bitterness that is ashy, yet pleasant, and very palatable. Hints of mint and star anise on that, and some slight espresso notes on the mid, plus slightly sour woody characters towards the back. Leaves a slight woodiness more than anything on the finish, but also an odd sweetness, like fruit & nut mix. An awesomely powerful flavour, with a tingle of alcohol towards the back. Very dark and burnt, but very good.

Pretty full mouthfeel, slight sting from the booze, but chewy and solid. Impressive, anyway.

Pretty damn drinkable for what it is. Intense, but very reasonable as a beer. One would want to have an argument with this beer, but it's just too reasonable and dammit, it makes too much sense. Just roll with it. It's right.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.26/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an incredibly deep black-brown. Indeed, the "brown" in black-brown is probably psychosomatic. I can't really see any lightening in the horrible abyss of this beer. Head is an incredibly massive head of dark brown foam, easily five-fingers, and far more extensive than the three fingers of body. Looks heavy, rich and black. Seriously. This is what I expect in a Russian Imperial.

Very dark notes on the nose - but not incredibly robust. Certainly characters of charcoal, roasted grains, and dark sugar, but it's not as powerful and offensive as the best RISs I've had.

The palate is very well put though. A very strong robust ashy bitterness, just leavened slightly with notes of high-cocoa percentage chocolate. It's bittersweet - and the "sweet" in bittersweet is certainly noticeable. Mouthfeel is clinging and smooth, but maybe not as thick as it could be. Still, a very robust and very good RIS palate. Very strong, bitter and robust, and bursting with blackened, charred characters.

A pretty damn good Imperial Stout. It really has all the classic characters that I love. While it doesn't break the mould in excitingly challenging ways, it does present a pretty extreme package, and it does provide a very good canonical exemplar of what Russian Imperial Stout should be.

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Photo of jmalex
3.96/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The cold weather is here. Time to break out all my year-old imperial stouts.

2008 vintage

APPEARANCE: Pours into my Delirium tulip pitch black with a mocha brown head. It starts at a finger's height and barely shrinks down at all. Phenomenal.

SMELL: A huge coffee-like roastiness pairs with a subtle dark fruitiness to create a fantastic pairing. The roastiness can be a bit much though and doesn't quite allow the fruitiness or chocolatiness to really shine.

TASTE: Now the fruitiness can really come out. It's nice and sweet initially with plum and fig combining wonderfully with dark chocolate. As the finish comes on, however the beer transforms into nearly pure coffee. A really neat trip, but my only complaint would be an odd emptiness of flavor right in the middle.

MOUTHFEEL: Silky smooth but slightly fuzzy (likely from the age on this). The body is medium full and carbonation is low. Seems good.

DRINKABILITY: A big beer obviously, but the 9% isn't very apparent. Even still, this one should last me the rest of the afternoon. Cheers to the half liter size. That's the perfect amount.

A fine beer and great example of both the style and of the awesome stuff coming out of Scandinavia. Certainly worth a buy.

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Photo of Jeffo
4.02/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this at De Bierkoning in Amsterdam.

From a bottle into a pint glass.

APPEARANCE: Pours a big 3 finger fluffy thick-as-a-brick looking light brown head with great retention. Pitch black and basically zero carbonation evident. Beer looks thick, like motor oil. Head has amazing retention, and a thick foam cap remains at least half way down the glass. A good film remains to the end and leaves lots of nice lacing. This is what an imperial stout should look like. A thing of beauty.

SMELL: A little too mild in by book. Some roasted malt, chocolate and coffee notes, with hints of licorice in the background as well. About the same boldness as their Havrestout, which is disappointing given that it's twice the ABV.

TASTE: Ok, here it is. Roasted malt, somewhat smoky, with heavy slabs of pure chocolate and bitter coffee flavors. Lots of bitterness at the finish as well. Big roasted and bitter aftertaste is full of coffee and chocolate, strong, and long lasting as well. A bit of spiciness from the alcohol makes an appearance before it's all said and done. Big and bold; a surprise given the nose.

PALATE: Medium-thick body with medium carbonation. Velvety smooth and oily slick on the palate, goes down slick as well and finishes with a slight bite to remind you of the ABV. Finishes slightly sticky.

OVERALL: Great brew. Looked like a pot of black gold and the taste blew me away, especially given the weaker nose. One I thoroughly enjoyed and am definitely going to pick up again. Recommended.

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Photo of sevopie
4.11/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Black as black can be. Medium brown head that laces with authority.

Milk Chocolate, Coffee, Raisins, Bread, Maple and a touch of caramel on the nose.

This is not the bitter bomb I was expecting, and its mighty tasty because of it. You get a lot of cocoa and coffee initially, and they make way for some more subtle chocolate flavors and a tinge of fruit and bread.

Typically, I'd expect an Imperial Stout to be a bit thicker than this, but it works with blend of flavors. There is a bit much carbonation, but this combination serves to make it more drinkable, which isn't really a negative - just doesn't fit the style.

Highly, highly drinkable for the style, the overbearing chocolate/coffee flavors canceling out a lot of the bitterness and making it very smooth.

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Photo of jdklks
3.75/5  rDev -9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The appearance is truly exceptional. rivals the best of the style. rediculously dark. not even allowing for the amber edges that many stouts boast when backlit, this one is impenetrable to light. a gorgeous head that ranges in color between milk and dark chocolate. It also smells fantastic. tons of chocolate and sweet, roasted malts. dark fruits (strong blueberry), and a blast of caramel. mmmm.

my senses of smell and taste have not been on the same page as of late. tons of roasted malt that gives off nothing but coffee bitterness. the sweetness expected from the smell is devoured by the intensity of roastiness. what is left resembles something like dark chocolate and not-quite-ripe blueberries. im going to have to come back to this as the beer warms a little.

mouthfeel is over-carbonated, but nice and thick. drinkability is good. overall, its okay.

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Photo of Goldfish19
4.35/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

~ Purchased this 500 ml bottle from Big Z Beverage in Huntington, NY. Pours pitch black with a nice creamy tan head. Aromas are of dark chocolate, roasted malts, hints of coffee, and some dark fruits. Taste is very similar to its smell. A heavy roasted flavor is followed by dark chocolates, coffee, and bitterness from the hops. The 9% ABV is well hidden, making this a smooth drinker. Overall, a well executed take on the style. ~

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Photo of emerge077
4.08/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Apparently never reviewed this, but i've had it at least once before. Cellared 2007 vintage, served at 55º in a tumbler, coincidentally it's about the same temperature outside.

Rich and sticky mocha foam, it crackles at first then subsides, leaving an unbroken skim that sticks to the sides. Jet black in the glass with some auburn highlights when poured against the light. Arcs of random lacing is left along the edges. Aroma is mostly char and bitter chocolate, with a hint of molasses in the background.

Flavors of bakers chocolate, a good amount of spicy licorice that lingers in the finish with a bitter edge of charred malt. Wisps of smoke in a bigger sip. Rich and creamy feel (oats) that blankets the palate and feels so nice on a cool Fall evening. Cellaring seems to have subdued any perceptible alcohol, though it's still a sipper.

I've been waiting awhile for cooler weather to break this out, glad I did!

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Imperial Stout from Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S
4.12 out of 5 based on 886 ratings.
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