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

Imperial StoutImperial Stout
888 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

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 888 |  Reviews: 521
Photo of HumanCarBomb
4.35/5  rDev +5.3%
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 -1.2%
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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Photo of cvfish
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - The beer poured darker than a struck match and produced a fluffy brown head which had great retention and laced the side of the glass nicely

S - The aromas produced by this beer had all the high notes of a good RIS, dark chocolate, smoke, black coffee, molasses, and black licorice

T - The taste of this beer was a bit underwhelming compared to the nose, dark chocolate and smoked malts, black coffee, molasses and black licorice were all there, but not as abundant as the nose was

M - The mouthfeel of this beer had a medium to heavy body with a light to moderate amount of carbonation

D - The drinkability of this beer is pretty high, this is a good Imperial Stout that delivers on the tastes you would expect from a big Stout, but a little pricey

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Photo of turboedtwo
3.82/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured into a duvel tulip..

a - has a small amount of head, maybe 3mm, light brown in color. the beer itself is black against the light.

s - smells of alcohol, coffee and some vanilla.

t - has a bit of a wood taste to it, with maybe some coffee and molasses.

m - feels good (man), pretty light feeling actually.

d - easy to drink for sure. could go through quite a bit of this quickly.

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Photo of Traquairlover
3.63/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

1 pint, .9 oz bottle poured into tulips. This is a re-review as I do not feel I was fair to this beer the last time I reviewed it.

A = Deep mahogany, opaque, with large chocolate brown head made of froth and large bubbles, eventually settling to a thin layer of foam on surface.

S = I found this beer really needs to breath. Right out of the bottle the predominant smell I got was plastic and it was not an enjoyable smell, there were also smells of burnt coffee grounds. With some time to open up the nose is much softer and complex. I get treacle, fresh baked chocolate muffins, much more well rounded out.

T = Sourdough bread starter, strong black coffee, bitter throughout. Not bad but too simple to stand out from the herd until the finish. The finish is really where this beer stands out as after swallowing I start to get much more complex tastes and sensations in my mouth of milk chocolate mixed with semisweet chocolate powder, molasses, oak.

M = Medium-heavy body, fair mouthcoating for the viscosity.

D = This one was kind of uneven. When not left sitting in the glass long enough it was hard to get down, but after breathing a bit, it turned into something that was not a greater drinker but would be a perfectly acceptable after dinner beer.

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Photo of sisuspeed
4.08/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured this into a wide tulip glass. The beer is pitch black with a thick, creamy, light brown head. Looks delicious. Nice lacing.

The aroma consists of well roasted malts, coffee grounds and a bit of sweet anise.

The flavor is dark roasted, slightly chocolaty malts. To balance the robustness of the malt base there is some bitter coffee flavor and some of the hops come through as well. There is also a metallic tinge to the flavor, not bad, but the beer would be better without it. Maybe it will fade as the beer warms up a little bit.

The mouthfeel is quite good. Thick, warming alcohol, big foamy head. Very well done. The drinkability is good as well. I find this beer to be as drinkable as any other RIS (besides a few of my faves, which I could drink all night). Overall, this is my first beer from Norway and I have to say that I am impressed. Good job Nogne O.

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Photo of abuliarose
3.85/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured pitch back into a snifter with nice thick brown head that takes awhile to die back. Smells are sweet and roasted with undertones of grilled fruit and dark chocolate.
Tastes charred. To be honest, it tastes like someone took the beer and gave it some deep grill marks over a charcoal weber. There's a decent bite from the carbonation and the hops. It remains sweet enough to hold a creamy texture, which is something I value about this heavy-bodied style. Underneath it all is some chocolate malt.
Mouthfeel is pretty good, though I'm not so much a fan of the billowy carbonation as those with less and more rounded at that. The roast makes it less drinkable and with its sweetness there is enough astringency to make it a sipper. Not my favorite RIS, but an admirable brew.

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Photo of aewinte1
3.65/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- poured pitch black. Very aggressive pour yields thin half inch head.
S- Smells of slight hints of chocolate, coffee, and alcohol. Not terribly aromatic, but some scents can be detected if you try hard enough.
T- Very interesting taste. Not terribly complex, but just enough to keep me interested and trying to pick out flavors. Starts off with a somewhat creamy soy-sauce flavor. Not necessarily loving the soy sauce flavor, but it is somewhat balanced by the malts and coffee. Taste fades to roasted malts and coffee. Soy sauce flavor is somewhat cloying. It's almost like a sweet and sour type flavor. Gotta try it for yourself, it's somewhat hard to describe.
M- mouthfeel is excellent. Good viscosity and, despite the minimal head, carbonation was fine.
D- Drinkability is pretty good from an alcohol standpoint. However, the soy sauce flavor begins to stack up on the palate and can be slightly overpowering.

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Photo of macktbone
4.23/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

purchased from the Co-op in Davis Ca and poured into a Stone IRS tulip style glass.

A- Black color with huge bubbles growing from the fluffy light brown head. Almost one inch of lace along the side of the glass. Bubbles have colors to them like in a bucket of soap getting ready to wash the car.

S- very roasted coffee and malt. Half way between an American super chocolate stlye and the Japanese soy coffee blend. lots of tastey chocolate.

T- Really nice Imperial Russian Stout. Good example for flavor but not too complex. I would have liked a little woodier edge but the coffee, malt, and dry edge is an ok compromise. Not a sweet stout like the American black licorice types. 9% is hidden well especially since the head is so big.

M- Good feel. Heavy to med-heavy body. Lack of carbonation contributes to the dry edge.

D- Very drinkable for a non sweet version. Too sweet and sticky is a no go....Too soy and coffee is too wierd. This is a good balance.

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Photo of far333
3.48/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Black and opaque with a light brown head of frothy foam that settles out quickly leaving uneven soapy bubbles.

Low aroma of sharp chocolate and espresso, some port and brandy notes.

Flavors of cocoa and burnt espresso, darkly roasted malts, some cherry tartness, hints of smoke. High bitterness, some acrid notes.

Mouthfeel is somewhat slick, low carbonation, finishes a little tannic and puckery.

Fairly tasty beer, but seems out of balance, a lttle rough around the edges.

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Photo of kegger22
4.05/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I was really looking forward to Nogne's Imperial Stout, and bought two 500 ml bottles in anticipation. Poured a dark, dark, brown, brown (brown), with a medium head that faded slowly to a foamy skin. The aroma was coffee, chocolate and sweet. The taste was lightly coffee, lightly chocolate and lightly sweet. In other words, Nogne refused to make any kind of statement. The feel was medium bodied (light for an imperial stout, do I sense a pattern here!), with little carbonation. Drinkability was OK. Overall, it reminded me of Mikkeller Beer Geek Breakfast as a disappointment. Nogne wasn't as pretty, but tasted better. Bottom line...about the same in a very competitive group. Note: this may be the most oily beer I've ever had.

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Photo of auroracrisis
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a standard pint glass.

Pours a pitch black. Smoothly from the bottle with very little glugging. Holding it up to the light reveals no transparency what so ever. The head is about an inch tall with a variety of different sized bubbles. A great looking beer, no flaws in the appearance.

Smells like roasted malts, dark chocolates, rich caramel or toffee is a little present with some booze. Smells good for sure.

The taste is sweet when in the mouth, like candy and when you swallow it fades into the roastiness that was smelled. The aftertaste is bitter for sure but isn't as rich as I like it to be in my RIS's. Overall the taste is good but not as good as the smell of it. It's missing that bite in the back of the mouth due to the roasted bitterness or something.

Mouthfeel is excellent. Silky smooth with just enough body. It's not over the top like some of the other RIS's out there but not too thin either like some other styles of imperial stouts (Breakfast Stout, I'm looking your way).

Drinkability is medium. This isn't a beer I could drink alot of due to how rich it is but that's how I like it. In fact, I'd like it to be a bit richer but that's okay.

Overall a good beer. Would drink again.

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Photo of ADZA
4.4/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer produces a jet,jet black colour with nice vivid carbonation that leaves a two finger frothy chocolate laced head with decent lacing,it has a really nice aroma of chocolate laced coffee with a subtle nice portish smell which lingers in the background very nice,it has a impressive full mouthfeel which coats the mouth with flavours of roasted toasty malts and a strong cappicino aftertaste which finishes a little bitter but perfectly balanced out a very nice beer that i could drink alot of very easy.

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Photo of farrago
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

One of the darkest heads you'll ever see, full brown of two fingers with sufficient larger bubbles to collapse it down to the surface in a minute or so, small streaks of lacing left behind. As the head might suggest, the liquid is pure jet black, fully opaque and devoid of any real color anywhere. The scents burst into your nose fast enough that it takes some time to separate them, more plum, cherry, black grape fruit scents than expected, palpable graininess as well, the hoppy bite there for sure, of course oodles of coffee bean, dark chocolate, mocha powder, fresh milk, shaved coconut, it's big enough that you can't differentiate between "lift" and "cling" in your nostrils. Full-bodied, however, lighter and more flowing based off the nose, the roast/toast factor much higher here which crispens things up. Dark chocolate, mocha, coffee, black licorice, on the dry side as a whole, dusty feel upon the tongue. The alcohol evident, on the boozy side. The grape, plum, blackberry fruit more in the background. The carbonation has a fat feel to it, adding creaminess to the texture. Very good, but, like an itch you can't scratch, there's something missing here to bring it all together.

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Photo of Pbomb
4.85/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

One of the best Russian Imperial Stouts I've had...I've been craving it ever since (and am bummed that I haven't been able to find it where I live now). I originally had this gem at the Map Room in Chicago; it was the perfect winter evening drink.

And dare I say it...I think it's better than Three Floyds's Dark Lord.

It pours thick and is basically opaque in a glass. This beer is exceptionally smooth with a perfect balance of slight hoppy bitterness and smokey roasted malts, ending with a nice chocolaty/coffee finish typical of your standard RIS. You can also get hints of anise, nuts, and fruit. But the mouthfeel/drinkability is what I love about this beer. Despite its ABV of 9%, the beer is straight up velvety goodness and goes down so easily that I think its exceptionally drinkable without being watered-down.

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Photo of augustgarage
4.23/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 500mL bottle into my Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Liquid is a deep seal brown, impenetrable to light, topped by a dense, fallow, dual-layered, thick and durable head of froth. Legs are slow to recede, and ride down with the dense milky lacing.

Roasted malt aromas are unctuous and mouth-watering, though not heavily-roasted/burnt. Chocolate, coffee, toffee, fresh spring water, black bread in the nose.

Assertive bitterness on the palate, both from hops and from roasted malt, followed up by layers of roastiness, caramel, and vanilla. Oats, dark chocolate, etc. Much like a good tea is elevated by the quality of water you brew it with, the use of Grimstad water lends this brewery's offerings a uniquely flavorful and refreshing foundation. Hints of tobacco and spice in the finish. Lovely.

Body is full and creamy, though not oily or chewy. Alcohol gives the sensation of cooling (almost like mint) rather than warming. Slight tannic drying and astringency which always encourages another sip.

Overall an exceptional example of the style, though a more perfect stout might go above and beyond by offering some estery notes and variations on roast level for the grains used. Still, this is probably the best Russian Imperial stout I've tried so far (haven't tried Kate the Great of The Abyss)...

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Photo of sweetbrew82
3.45/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16.9 oz. bottle into a snifter/ no freshness date

P: Absolutely jet black in the glass with barely a sliver of light coming through on the very edges. One of the darkest beers I've had in a while. The khaki-colored foam on top isn't as thick as I expected, but does have a nice creaminess to it. Showed average retention and left only a few specks of lace behind.

A: Roasted malts, chocolate, coffee, anise, and booze. Lacks the power and strength that it takes to measure up in this top-heavy category, though.

T: All the usual suspects that you would expect to find in an RIS are here. Plenty of very deeply-roasted/burnt malts, chocolate, coffee, molasses, figs, anise, and booze. But what immediately took me back was the bigger-than-expected hop presence. There are some stouts out there that boast a really hoppy profile that I love, (as I am a hophead of the highest order) but I find myself really wishing that they weren't so prominent in this one. Their citrusy alpha-acids intrude way too much on the stout flavors, forcing me to dig underneath it to get to the flavor profile that I want out of an RIS. Needless to say, you can taste all 75 of those IBU's as a result, which is only added to by the bitterness of the coffee. But one thing is for sure, the alcohol is nowhere to be found, aside from the slight burn in the chest upon swallow.

M: The mouthfeel is not at all like I expected. It's not real viscious, but it is really silky smooth on the tongue, and seems to glide across the palate with ease. But it doesn't feel nearly as full as the appearance would lead you to believe, though. I'd say medium-bodied sounds about right. It teeters on the edge of being thin and watery for a stout, instead of being thick and chewy like what you would expect from a beer of this style.

Notes: This is a decent Russian Imperial Stout, but honestly, I was a bit let-down. The burnt malts combine with the hops to impart a bitterness that seems to muddle things up a bit for me, which results in the stout flavors not being able to shine as brightly as they could. In my opinion, it's definitely not worth the $8.39 that I paid for it, which was the fear that forced me to keep putting it off for so long. It's got potential, though. Maybe a year or two in a cellar would do it some good. As is, though, I'm unimpressed.

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

Pours pitch black with very little head and no cover. Smell is roasted malts and some alcohol. Heavy roasted malt taste (delicious) with some coffee, unsweetened chocolate, and alcohol. Mouthfeel is a tiny bit lacking but nice finish and enjoyable. The alcohol is pretty masked in this one, making it very drinkable regardless of the 9%.

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Photo of cbutova
4.5/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours pitch black into my new Dogfish Head 25oz snifter with a small tan head, the head slowly fades into an unpredictable milky coating on the top of the beer, looks really cool actually, almost like when you first pour cream into coffee. No lacing is left on my glass at all as I finish the beer. Smells of roasted malts, roasted coffee, a bit of hop presence and an alcohol kick, which was strange considering the taste. Taste here is a very good example of a non-coffee explosion, non-chocolate filled imperial stout. You get a lot of roasted malts, a bit of hops which adds a nice element to it, some roasted coffee and some sweetness from the malts too, it all adds up to a very good taste. The mouthfeel here was a tiny bit thin for my preference on an imperial stout, other than that the roasted flavors coat the tongue very well leaving you with a nice aftertaste. Drinkability is good, I judge an imperial's drinkability by its taste mostly since they are very heavy beers, this one isn't overly filling and since its taste is very exemplary for a russian I will buy it when I see it and gain $$$.

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Photo of OStrungT
4.6/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a jet black color, letting in absolutely no light. It boasts a thick, fluffy very dark brown head. It might be the darkest head I have ever seen. It fades slowly, leaving a massive lacing.

This beer smells of coffee. I detect a strong burnt malt aroma. I can also detect a strong bittersweet chocolate aroma. Some dark fruit, fig and raisin. Also, I get a very slightly licorice aroma, with hints of tobacco. A lot of aroma mixing well.

This beer tastes like it smells. It is a mix of many aggressive flavors. Coffee, chocolate, figs, licorice, tobacco.

This beer is very full bodied. It goes down surprisingly smooth. The alcohol is well hidden. Carbonation is low, fitting the style. It leaves a coffee like aftertaste.

This beer might not be the greatest session beer. It has a very aggressive flavor, and at 9%ABV, it may be hard to put down many. However, it is quite good.

Overall: Wow. This beer is something else. They packed a lot of flavor into one little bottle. I like it, and intend to buy it again.

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Photo of BarrelO
4.08/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

500ml bottle poured into a goblet. The label only lists Columbus hops.

A: Black as night. Huge tan head leaves a ton of lacing.

S: Coffee, bittersweet chocolate, and a hint of licorice.

T: Major roasted flavors with a noticeable quantity of sweet malt. Finishes rather bitter.

M: Thick, rich, and stout-y.

D: Easily the best Norwegian beer I've ever had. Granted, it's the only Norwegian beer I've ever had, but it's fine on its own merits. Certainly worth a try if you're a stout lover.

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Photo of SaCkErZ9
4.63/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22 degrees P, 75IBU, 9%ABV

Pours from the 16.9oz bottle into a snifter a pitch black color with a light mocha colored head. Decent in size, about 1 finger. A touch of lacing and the head falls to a ring around the edges of the beer.

Aroma is smoky, sweet, beefy, chocolatey. Actually, lots of chocolate with a touch of smoke. Dark fruits such as figs and raisins and a bit of black licorice. A big bit of "beef jerky" like in the aroma as well; smoky yet spicy and BEEFY.

Wow! Solid flavor. Smooth coffee, chocolate, dark fruits, hop bitterness. This one is so smooth. Simply delicious. I just had a Stone RIS not too long ago but this one seems to barely eclipse Stone in overall flavor and feel.

Smooth and creamy. Mouthfeel is thick without being cloying, yet lacks that oomph and panache that would give it a perfect score; slightly overcarbonated perhaps. Alcohol is nowhere to be found. Perfect amount of bitterness with the slight sweetness and coffee and chocolate notes. Simply beautiful.

My bottle is 1.5 - 2 years old and it taste perfect!

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Photo of Yeastcakes
4.52/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Serving notes - bottle at Ebenezer's Pub in Lovel, ME. Cellar temp, duval-style glass.
A - intense barley followed by dark alcohol fruit notes.
A - Pitch black with some red highlights around the meniscus when I bring the glass to my mouth. Thin tan head that quickly disappears.
M - Thick and full. Almost no noticeable carbonation.
T - Great full malted barley flavor. Some roast flavors but no bitterness. Some dark fruit notes. No noticeable hops.
D - Great beer, this goes down dangerously smooth.

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Photo of GRG1313
4.58/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours thick and black with a thick dark tan head.

Initial nose smells like chocolate syrup. Thick, creamy and bold mouthfill, extremely attractive.

Huge thick dark bitter chocolate flavors with hints of sweet coffee and espresso. This has layers of chocolate and coffee flavors, layered in different chocolate and coffee nuances. Some deep, bold rich roasted malt and some big and bold sweet black licorice flavors.

The body and balance of this stout matches the deep rich flavors. A winner.

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Photo of John_M
4.02/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Max's the other day.

The beer pours the expected dark blackish brown color with OK head retention and lacing. The nose is pretty complex on this one (especially when compared side by side with a glass of 2007 Stone IRS), consisting of coffee, chocolate, licorice and nuts. Flavors on the palate generally replicate the nose, except the flavor profile is dominated by coffee and licorice. Mouthfeel is long and very smooth, with the alcohol fairly well disguised. However, the combination of licorice and alcohol is a bit much, and detracts somewhat from this beer's drinkability. Nevertheless, this is still a pretty decent beer.

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Imperial Stout from Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S
Beer rating: 4.13 out of 5 with 888 ratings
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