Peg Leg Imperial Stout | Heavy Seas Beer

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Peg Leg Imperial StoutPeg Leg Imperial Stout
1,453 Ratings
Peg Leg Imperial StoutPeg Leg Imperial Stout

Brewed by:
Heavy Seas Beer
Maryland, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Deep mahogany in color with aromas of roasted coffee, molasses and dark chocolate. Subtly hopped, making it astonishingly smooth and easy drinking for such a big beer.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-03-2004

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,453 |  Reviews: 711
Photo of Sammy
3.77/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this 7 months after suggested expiry date. It was pitch black with no head, very well malted with some chocolate and decent carbonation, medium plus mouthfeel. A bit sour finish, not to be completely unexpected. Roast and coffee aroma and not bad, underrated.

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Photo of kylehay2004
3.62/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed at the brewery prior to the tour.

A: single finger head with poor retention and decent lacing on a jet black body with just a hint of light getting through.

S: coffee, dark chocolate, gingerbread and roasted malts.

T: roasted malts with both light coffee and espresso notes up front with vanilla and dark chocolate coming in late in the finish.

M: medium body and moderate carbonation. Nothing special here.

Overall: a good beer but imperial stouts are usually flagship beers so often that although this is a good stout, it isnt great and doesnt stand up against the stiff competition of the genre.

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Photo of jaydoc
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of GRG1313
2.23/5  rDev -39.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Pours dark brown/black with a nice thick and firm medium dark tan head.

Relatively simple one dimensional nose of sweet dark chocolate. Nice, fresh but simple.

Mouthfeel is thin and watery. Mouthfeel of carbonated coffee.

Flavors are of artificially sweetened medium bodied black coffee.

Finish is sweet coffee character all around. A bit coffee soda like in many respects. Can't really see this one with any food. Just out of balance in all respects and too artificially sweet with no other redeeming characteristics.

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Photo of djrn2
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of Knapp85
3.09/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This Imperial Stout poured out as a thin looking black liquid with a thin brown head on top. There wasn't much lacing at all here. The smell was of roasted malts and grains. The taste was bitter with some burnt flavors and a hint of chocolate. The mouthfeel was just too watery for this to be an Imperial in my opinion. The beer is a decent one to try. But I just don't think it should be classified as an imperial stout.

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Photo of nmann08
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of oriolesfan4
4.05/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Part of the Clipper City Heavy Seas mixed 12 pack for $17.99

A pretty good RIS right here, I thought it was quite tasty. The first one I had was a bit harsh at first, but the second beer I tried from the 12'er was much more mellow. Very tasty and smoother than usual for the style, and maybe a bit lighter in body. A very good beer overall though...I enjoyed it.

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Photo of t0rin0
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

Photo of Taphouse_Traveler
3.72/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of metter98
3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is essentially jet black in color—traces of dark brown are visible near the edges of the glass when it is held up to a bright light—and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin and dense tan head that quickly died down, leaving some lacing on the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light to moderate aromas of licorice, semisweet chocolate and dark fruits in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and does not have any bitterness or flavors of roasted malts.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied and smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. No dryness is perceptible.
O: This beer is somewhat unusual compared to other beers in the style because it lacks dryness and flavors of roasted malts and seems to be somewhat of a hybrid between a Belgian Strong Dark Ale and a Russian Imperial Stout. Nonetheless, it is relatively easy to drink and hides its alcohol very well.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.24/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

With all the fixations on alcohol, sweetness and roast to carry the taste of trendy imperial stout, its refreshing to see a beer that's rooted in British rounded complexity even if its taste is savory, sipping and robust.

Clipper City's big boy of a stout starts with dark mahogany brown that's just off of opaque. As it stews in the glass like dark roast coffee, its roasted aromas follow suit with its own dark chocolate, walnut and cold-pressed blends. Its decadent seared sugars underneath take on a toffee and molasses tone but evading the viscous texture of either.

Across the middle, the strong ale really opens up by saturating the palate with equal parts bittersweet chocolate, nutty coffee blends and a toasty-peppery bit. The starchy sweetness that floats beneath carries with it the fruity sweetness of grilled currant, blackberry and a tinge of licorice.

Finishing with an oddly light sense of palatability, the luscious beer isn't exactly built for quick drinking but it's surly not indicative of imperial strength. Its understated simmering warmth cuts through the beer's sweetness and mild viscosity with a finish of smoky chocolate and grilled fruit.

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Photo of oline73
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of emerge077
2.81/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

BBD: MAR 10 "8257" on bottom of bottle... produced August '08 i'm guessing. This probably needs to be dated "best by" a year past production, not 1.5 yrs. past production.

Poured into a kbs glass, this beer had a slight head of tan foam. The foam started dissipating slowly, into a fuzzy network of bubble islands, and a more consistent ring at the edge. Some textured lace results from the first few sips.

First impression of the aroma was fruity, then it's all harsh metallic grain in the glass, with a smear of alcohol. Ugh. This has no redeeming value.

Flavor is similarly thin with some harsh roasted malt and and alcoholic aftertaste. Very vague chocolate in the aftertaste, but that's a stretch. Astringent feel that's thin and sour/bitter. Not right. They need to go back to the drawing board with this, it's awful.


B- / 3.35
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | drink: 3.5
rDev: -7.5%

Thanks to brewcrew76 for this one!
Label is marked "Purchase before month notched: Jan 08"...not "consume by" which is a little odd. Maybe purchasing implies immediate consumption?

It pours a deep black tone into a pint glass, a chestnut brown in the light as it's poured. Foam has sticky lace, and it remains for a good while. Slight lactic aroma.

Flavor has some roast and hop bitterness, but it's way too muted. A little bit vegetal (whole hop?) and astringent like a homebrew. Very thin for an imperial stout, it comes off more like a weak porter. Slight lactic creaminess that doesn't hold up without more body and carbonation. Definitely not a favorite, won't seek it out.

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Photo of zeff80
3.84/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a jet black color with hints of brown. It really didn't have a head at all, but left some lace.

S - It smelled of sweet chocolate, caramel and toffee. Some floral hints, too.

T - It tasted very chocolatey and sweet. A nice roasted caramel malt flavor started to emerge as it warmed up.

M - It was very soft and almost a little thin (watery?). A medium-bodied beer.

D - Overall, it was quite drinkable, just not the best RIS.

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Photo of brentk56
3.7/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a dark coffee brown color with garnet highlights; the tan head rather quickly falss to a ringlet but does leave some shards of lace behind

Smell: Mocha and rich caramel notes waft from the brew

Taste: Starts with a mocha flavor that swirls nicely across the tastebuds; after the swallow, a bit more chocolate appears along with a metallic taste that is a minor distraction; the finish provides some roasty bitterness

Mouthfeel: As others have noted, slightly thin for an Impy with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Overall, this is an Impy that is easy to drink and the recipe is a big improvement over the one they brewed a few years ago

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Photo of superspak
3.68/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into snifter, best before 2/10/2015. Pours pitch black color with a 1 finger dense tan head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass. Aromas of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toast, toffee, dark bread, molasses, light licorice, light char, light herbal, and roasted earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance and complexity of dark/roasted/bready malt and light earthy hop notes; with decent strength. Taste of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toast, toffee, dark bread, molasses, light licorice, light char, light herbal, and roasted earthiness. Light amount of herbal/roasted bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toast, toffee, dark bread, molasses, light char, and roasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Nice robustness and complexity of dark/roasted/bready malt and light earthy hop flavors; with a good roasted bitterness/sweetness balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Light-medium carbonation and medium-full bodied; with a smooth, moderately creamy, and lightly sticky/chalky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming present after the finish. Overall this is a nice imperial stout style. All around good robustness, complexity, and balance of dark/roasted/bready malt and light earthy hop flavors; and very smooth to sip on. A nicely enjoyable offering.

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Photo of Boone757
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of dbrauneis
3.64/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours an opaque thick jet black in color with light amounts of gentle visible carbonation along the edges of the glass and faint dark cola brown highlights. The beer has a two finger tall dense foamy mocha colored head that slowly reduces to a thick film covering the entire surface of the beer with a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of dark chocolate, dark fruits (alcohol soaked figs & prunes), roasted malts, and coffee. Hints of anise/licorice are present as well.

T: Upfront there is a light flavor of dark roasted malts which is quickly overtaken by the moderate flavors of dark chocolate and coffee. That is followed by a light to moderate flavor of dark fruits (alcohol soaked fig + prunes) with a light amount of sweetness. Hints of anise and minimal amounts of bitterness are present towards the finish. Light notes of alcohol/booziness in the finish.

M: Medium to full bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Hints of alcohol warming in the finish.

O: Relatively easy to drink and enjoyable with notes of both RIS and BSDA flavors/aromas. Alcohol is pretty well hidden though this one is more of a sipping beer.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.83/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

My initial thought on tasting this beer a half-year or so ago was that although it was a very good beer, it didn't quite live up to the "Imperial Stout" designation. And that thought remains, but... I expect there will be a change in the recipe this year as there was with the Red Sky this last time around. Still, as it is...

Clipper City's Peg Leg pours a very dark mahogany with chestnut highlights beneath a creamy head of tan foam that holds fairly well but leaves little more than tiny spots and wider splashes of lace about the glass.

The nose is caramelish and mocha-like, with a hint of coffee-liquor.

In the mouth it's medium-bodied with a moderate carbonation that lends a gentle caress to the palate.

The flavor is delicately sweet but coffee-ish with a caramelish side, and reveals an underlying touch of yeasty fruitiness as well as some background grassy and spruce-like (?) hops. The alcohol is well-cloaked throughout and it finishes with a mild touch of roastiness, some yeasty fruitiness, some delicate caramel, a slap of fruity/leafy/grassy/piney hops, and a spritz of alcohol.

Overall, it's not a bad beer... but it needs a lot of work to become an Imperial Stout.

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Photo of DrBier
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of zestar
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

Photo of jlindros
3.08/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Redo, left the old review below for contrast, but here is a new fresh review. Best before April 11th.

Pours a small fizzy but darker colored head that fades almost instantly, almost pitch black coca cola colored beer.

Nose brings a bit of earthy dark roasty malts, light black patent, light caramel, bitter stout aromas, fairly light overall, light malts, not a very big nose, and a slight musty dark fruit.

Taste starts lighter than I expected, some light roast and black patent, burnt coffee grinds, acidic and acrid, charred flavors, burnt caramel, bit of a tinny flavor too, boozy, a bit sticky, some over ripe dark fruits too. Finishes a bit boozy, little bitter, more acrid burnt coffee, and a bit of sticky syrupy flavors.

Mouth is a bit thick but watery at teh same time, lower carbonation.

Drink is meh, fairly boozy, sticky finish, lots of burnt flavors and acrid coffee grinds, a slight tinny flavor too.

Old review:

This being an imp stout at 8% I assume it can age well, and this has date best before Jan 2009, so it's got some age.

A thick creamy but bubbly head rises to about a finger but fades quicker than my pour to nothing, not even a head covering. Way too fizzy for a good imp stout! The beer is basically jet black with the slightest hints of light coming through in thinning area, but it looks watery in those area.

The nose has some malty aromas, somewhat syrupy with a little boozy like syrupy extract aromas, some very light roasted malt, and aromas of burnt malts. A slight sweet sugary aroma and some light bitterness.

Taste very bland and bleh, not much stout at all. It has some sweet malty flavors, syrupy light sweet extract flavors, corn syrup, some burnt toffee and burnt malts, little roast and coffee, some light bitterness from the burnt malts, and some weird fruits. Finishing with lingering burnt coffee grinds with some acidity, a boozy taste, and some sweetness but not sticky.

Mouth is pretty watery and not so thick or rich like I expected, with almost no carbonation.

Drinkability is meh at best, with some boozy tastes, a sweet finish, and lots of lingering burnt acidic coffee grinds, but at least it's not sticky. It could have helped with some more carbonation too.

This is probably the worst beer Heavy Seas makes IMO. Seeing how this has a fairly low rating, I'm not surprised how much I didn't really like it. However, my review will most likely be significantly less than that, so I'll ahve to give this a try again when it's fresh. First drain pour in a while, I just can't.

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Photo of chinchill
3.76/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle with a BB date stamp of Oct. 2015 purchased earlier in the day at a World Market.

Pours a very dark red-brown looking black and opaque in the shaker pint glass. Decent head and some lacing.

Excellent mouthfeel despite indications of high ABV: very smooth and full.

The aroma too is quite nice. While I certainly like the flavor it is only about average, at best, for style.

Overall: a bit disappointing given the brewery and the favored style.

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Photo of vfgccp
2.75/5  rDev -24.9%

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Peg Leg Imperial Stout from Heavy Seas Beer
Beer rating: 3.66 out of 5 with 1,453 ratings