Peg Leg Imperial Stout | Heavy Seas Beer

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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

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Ratings: 1,414 |  Reviews: 699
Photo of jondeelee
3.88/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Peg Leg begins with a good Imperial Stout aroma, heavy with malts and smelling of coffee, toffee, peat, dark chocolate, and caramelized brown sugar. The coffee aroma is lighter than on many Imperial Stouts, and the beer lacks the thick ash scent that is typical of the style.

On the tongue, the initial flavors are coffee, ash (which is present in the taste, strangely), caramelized sugars, and darker fruit esters, such as fig and black cherry. Chocolate malts come through strongly in the second half of the mouthful, and last well into the aftertaste. The beer has a strong alcohol buzz (8% ABV) which does tickle the soft palate. Mouthfeel is medium (which I found thin for an Imperial Stout), and carbonation is medium.

Overall, this is a decent stout, but the flavors are lighter that would be expected for an Imperial. Still, the flavors are present in good quantities, and are finely nuanced; they simply lack the extra punch of a good Imperial. But because of this, the beer is a little more drinkable to newcomers, and so makes good introductory fare.

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Photo of ExtraStout
3.6/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Serving was from a 12 oz. bottle.

The pour produced a light head that was not overly persistent. There is a nice malt aroma along with some light roastiness and hop characteristics. The aroma doesn't fully indicate the flavors present.

The taste is decent with malt and roast presence along with a sort of baked raisin (think like a dessert type thing) flavor. There is also a lightly hopped finish which is unexpected but not unpleasant. The finish also includes some lingering malt character.

The feel is fairly smooth with an okay finish overall. However, it is VERY thin for an Imperial.

This is still a drinkable beer, although not very style consistent. It would be more appropriate to be called a regular or American Stout, rather than Imperial. It's alcohol content isn't overly obvious, either - which is a surprise given the overall thinness of the beer otherwise. Further, it really doesn't have the strong flavors one expects in an Imperial. I would certainly drink this one again, but won't go out of my way to find it.

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Photo of sholland119
3.46/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to my boss for bringing this back from MD and not caring for it. And then giving it to me.

A-Looking good. Dark brown, opaque, a thin mocha head leaves a nice sheet of lacing.

S-Brown sugar, roasted coffee and some bittersweet chocolate.

T-Raisiny with dark fruit and a lighter than expected roast. Some light bittersweet chocolate.

M-Medium bodied, bitterness is more apparent on the tongue than in the taste.

O-Nice. A bit behind the times for today's RIS but would have been a nice one 15 years ago.


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Photo of wvsabbath
3.42/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Serving Type - Bottle

Appearance - Dark black, 1/2 creamy head, some lacing.

Smell - Roasted malts, alcohol, dark fruits like plum and rasin. Coffee, Smoke, Oak, alot of smell.

Taste - Mellow coffee and chocolate start this stout beer off. Rather mild for a r.i.s and 8% alcohol. Malts are roasted and tasty. Not much hop presence.Some minor vanilla and some sugars round this out.

Mouthfeel - Rather palette friendly for being a r.i.s. Tounge is coated with sweet chocolate and malts, but doesnt last long really.Aftertaste is weak and forgetable.

Overall - This would be a fine stout, not a r.i.s. Way to mild and watered down. Decent flavor but really lacking what all the other greats pack. Its ok, but i wouldnt recommend since theres tons of better beers of this style out there.

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Photo of PicoPapa
3.62/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle. Part of the mix 12 pack. Best Before Date notched at Aug. Pours a dark brown color with an inch of tan, frothy head. Minimal lacing. Aromas of coffee, vanilla, and some chocolate. Smells sweet. Taste is vanilla, light and sweet coffee, with hints of chocolate. Slightly bitter finish. A bit malty. Some dark fruit flavor as well. Nicely carbonated. Very little, if any, alcohol taste. As a beer in a mix pack it works, but I wouldn't buy it on its own. A decent enough RIS, however I can think of a bunch of other ones I'd rather buy.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.78/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Not very dark has a very good ruby red hue to it. The head has a nice tan color to it but not dark enough to be an imperial stout.

S - Slight coffee and chocolate but nothing to write home about as it is very faint.

T - Mostly sugary malts with a touch of coffee and pretty sweet chocolates (rather than bittersweet). Kind of enjoyable but where is the roast?

M - Comes in on the medium body of stouts. Smooth.

Overall enjoyable as it may be it's really not what I look for in the style. With little to no roast I will have to look elsewhere for an actual imperial stout.

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Photo of Thads324
2.72/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

pours a deep black with a super thick tan head that looks ultra sticky. superior lacing and retention. smells like a big booze and little bit of charcoal like coffee. sweet vanilla hints towards the end.

the brew starts with an astringent like feel with a very sweet and sugary coffee flavor. roasted malts, a bit of toffee and some coffee but not much. A good solid hop bitterness sits right in the middle and does a great job breaking up the sweetness, but the sweetness just returns. The mouthfeel is pretty solid and full bodied, boozy with a wet finish.

A lot of booze and sugar and not enough balance with the malt. The appearance and use of hops are the best part of this brew that isn't going to be sought out anytime soon...

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Photo of StoutHunter
2.69/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

I picked up a bottle of Heavy Seas Peg Leg a couple days ago for $1.69 at The Lager Mill. I remember being impressed by Heavy Seas's Wiezenbock so I thought I would give their Imperial Stout a try to see if that impresses me also. It was notched May 2011. Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a snifter.

A- The label on this beers looks ok, if the image was as big a the font they used then this beer might actually stick out a little bit. It poured a typical deep dark black color with three fingers worth of fluffy tan head that died down to a thick layer that stayed the rest of the time and left some nice rings of lacing.

S- The aroma starts off with lots of deeply roasted dark malts. The malts have a moderate sweetness to them and they impart some dark chocolate and black coffee aromas. The aroma is nice but I expect a more robust aroma from a RIS.

T- The taste seems to mirror the aroma. It starts of with those roasted malts that retain most of the sweetness from aroma, I wish that was toned down a little. There are some chocolate and coffee flavors that I expect from a RIS but they are much lighter and subtle then most RIS's. There is no hop presence and the finish is sweet with a little presence of alcohol.

M- It was medium light bodied and that was just too watery for a proper RIS, they should be thick and chewy and this one wasn't. Surprisingly it had better carbonation then most RIS's but that doesn't make up for the poor body of this beer.

Overall I thought this was a pretty average RIS that I wasn't that into. It looked pretty good but the aroma and taste were a little lackluster and the majority of the mouthfeel wasn't good. When I think of RIS's I think of a thick, roasty, and robust brew and this beer just didn't live up to that. It wasn't robust enough for an RIS and the watery mouthfeel didn't match up either, I find this beer to be closer to a normal stout then a RIS. The price of this beer was pretty good, but unfortunately everything else about this beer wasn't. I don't think I would buy this beer again and I wouldn't recommend it to anybody since it just doesn't do a good job at representing what an RIS is. This beer just didn't do it for me and i'll chalk it up as a disappointment.

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Photo of secondtooth
3.82/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Densest of blacks upon pouring, with low carbonation and a tan head. Virtually no lace here.

Nose is rich chocolate malts. Not bad.

Taste is definitely roasted chocolate, and maybe a hint of coffee. Thick in body and with a slightly bitter finish. Also, as this one warms, the coffee hints become more prominent.

Solid all the way. Enjoyable and worth repeating.

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Photo of bubseymour
3.67/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The appearance is somewhat lackluster for an I.S. I poured agressively and got no head at all, maybe 1 finger that disappeared quickly.

Smell - some chocolate notes but not much else

Taste - taste is malty, chocolately and slightly boozey. Smooth though with little to no hop presence.

Mouthfeel - smooth slightly fizzy

Overall - Not one of the better Imperial Stouts I've had but its still not a bad beer to sample. Its one of the easier I.S's to drink and might be good for a beginner B.A. but there are better I.S offerings out there.

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Photo of gford217
3.25/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I have no idea how old this bottle is but it's a 12oz bottle with the old label and lists a "purchase by" date notched May '09.

Pour is fairly unimpressive and on the lighter side of things for an impy stout. Dark mahogany with light showing through the edges and a very small beige head that shows no retention or lacing.

It's very sweet in the nose with chocolate and dark fruits leading the way, maybe some licorice as well. There are espresso notes in the background and a hefty amount of caramelized sugar.

The taste is subtle for the style, to say the least. It's got the backbone of molasses with raisins and dark chocolate mixed in. Sweet, sticky finish.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with low carbonation and probably lack the body of a top notch imperial stout.

It's a decent brew but probably just average for the style. Very sweet and lacking the depth of the big boys.

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Photo of engagechad
3.55/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Purchased as a single from Total Wine in Richmond, VA - tulip

Pours very dark, not black with not much head and not much lacing. Smells malty with a little bit of spicey chocolate coffee nose but nothing real good. Taste follows, just above average. Feels kinda stingy.. for an 8% it's a bit boozy (as opposed to the 11% choklat.. man that stuff is smooth)

Not something I would buy again, but I wouldn't turn it down.

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Photo of danmcg62
3.23/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A-Pours a deep dark black color with a thick tan head that stays around for a little bit and leaves a bit of a lace around the glass. I like the look of this beer.

S-A dark chocolate aroma with a malty twist. Dark roasted coffee is also there as well.

T-The taste was a bit hard for me to distinguish. A bit malt, a bit dark chocolate, and a bit dark roasted coffee, but none of the three jumps out at me. A bit disappointed since it is billed as an imperial stout.

M-Thick, creamy, and chewy.

O-Overall this is just OK. I was expecting much more from this one, especially since it is listed under the imperial stout style.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.09/5  rDev -14.9%
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 sccala
3.33/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. brown bottle (with a cartoon pirate scene on it...Arrrrggghhh) into a standard pint glass.

A- Color is, if not black, the closest thing to it. Poured a half finger head that immediately disappeared except for ring which lined the inside of the glass. Some decent lacing though.

S- Smells of deeply roasted grains. And kind of a syrupy sweetness too.

T- Just how it smells. Pretty standard for this style. Very roasty, a bit of charcoal, slight caramel, chewy.

M- The "tinglyness" in the aftertaste is a suprise since there was no head, leading me to believe that carbonation was minimal. Leaves a good coating in the mouth that lasts a good minute or so.

O- A pretty good brew. Slightly above average. Not one of Clipper City's best though. On a personal note, it is sort of filling. I don't think I could have more than 2 and still enjoy myself

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Photo of dtivp
3.65/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a very deep dark brown, almost black with a half finger tan head which quickly dissipates into a ring, moderate lacing.

Aroma of roasted malt and dark bold coffee.

Taste followed the nose with dark roasted malr, black coffee and a slight hint of bitter chocolate.

Mouthfeel was the light side of medium body, little carbonation.

Overall this beer is a little thin to be an RIS, at best I would say it is a good stout.

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Photo of ChugginOil
4/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to GallowsTheif for the extra!
Best before Sep. 2011

This one pours a very dark brown with red highlights and ends up black. When held to the light, cola colored edging shows. A fingers worth of light tan head has decent retention and leaves very little lacing.

The nose is full of boozy chocolate, and miniscule amount of coffe and hop. Really sweet smelling.

The taste is quite similar to the nose. The chocolate notes are bitter-sweet and make way for some molasses and a bit of coffee and smoke is noticed towards the finish. The booze hasnt really mellowed after a year or so but its not too hot.

The mouthfeel is sticky and thick. Creamy with a bit of heat felt. A light amount of carbonation is fitting.

Overall, I think this brew is quite underrated. Maybe it is the 1yr + of age on it. I havent had it fresh but I think its tasting mighty fine about now.

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Photo of kscaldef
3.23/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours into a tulip with a head that rushes to fill the glass. A mix of dense, creamy foam and large, loose bubbles. Head is light brown, body is a dark, dark brown. Lots of sticky lacing.

S: Coffee and roasty aromas. A little cracker. Maybe I'm imagining it from the name, but I'm catching a hint of the sea.

T: Toasted with some creamy notes. A little chocolate, just a hint of raisin. A little bit of unwelcome sourness.

M: Medium bodied, low carbonation, smooth and creamy.

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Photo of Chaney
3.63/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: This one originally had about a 1/2 finger head or so. However, I was impressed by the fact that it retained it's retention for about 30 minutes while I was waiting for the abnormally cold brew to warm up. This was pitch black in color by the way...

S: Mild coffee, dark chocolate, and roasted malts. This was definitely not a fruity IS.

T: Roasted malts, chocolate (by default... even though I honestly don't believe that was one of the ingredients), and a tinge of

M: Low carbonation, and kinda thin actually. Moderate to thin lacing.

O: I wish this were better since it's local, but it was nothing special.

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Photo of warnerry
3.36/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Best by May 2011; consumed 4/27/11

Pours dakr brown/black with one finger of light brown head. Head dissipates quickly and leaves some lacing behind.

Aroma seems very subtle, but consists of some chocolate and some roasted malts. There is also an off aroma that I can't quite pick out.

Chocolate seems to dominate the taste, followed by some coffee and roasted malts. Decent flavor profile, but reminds me more of an inferior version of Hoppin' Frog Silk Porter than an RIS.

Mouthfeel seems thin for the style.

Certainly nothing offensive about this, but it doesn't stand out in any particular way a

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Photo of fank2788
3.36/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle served in a snifter
Opaque black in the glass, starts out with a finger of khaki head which falls to a thin film of bubbles on the top and around the rim of the beer. The smell of black coffee and dark chocolate with some toasted breads. Maybe a bit weak without the required dimension of a good imperial stout, more reminiscent of a classic dry or american stout. The taste follows the nose, with the chocolate and coffee really dominating beyond that there is a touch of dark fruit but not too much else. I find the hops to be a delicate addition rather than a major player. The note on the bottle says they are targeting the more British end of this style but it may fall short of that mark as well, using Sam Smith Imperial Stout as the benchmark. Mouthfeel may be on the thin side the finish is slightly sweet but too clean and overall the body is a bit on the light side. The alcohol is well masked for a beer of it's strength which does add to the drinkability. So I'm not entirely impressed overall, this is a very tough style as it is done so often and so well by a number of breweries that anything short of good doesn't seem to be worth one's time.

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Photo of jsanford
3.3/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a Tulip Glass

A - Pours a dark black with slight brownish highlights and a 1-inch, khaki-colored head that fades to a slight haze, leaving just the tiniest bit of lacing.
S - Fairly typical Stout aromas of dark malt, coffee, and chocolate, with a slight hop bitterness in the finish. Nice, but safe.
T - Same safe Stout flavors of roasted malt, chocolate and coffee. Not much hop character, in fact the finish just kinda drops off, leaving a bit to be desired in the flavor department. Not bad, but nothing memorable.
M - Moderately creamy, with a medium body and mouth-feel, and low carbonation.
O - While there's nothing wrong with this one in particular, it's just a typical, safe offering in a sea of much better Stouts. Heh, I made a nautical reference while reviewing a Heavy Seas beer.

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Photo of KajII
3.53/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

[Best served in a Snifter]

The pour non-transparent jet black with a large (2-3 finger) medium brown frothy head that diminished rapidly, leaving just a little residue floating on top which allowed for a some fair streaky lacing.

The aroma was of a mild burnt chocolate malt and a leathery yeast with hints of dark chocolate, molasses and a dark roasted coffee.

The taste I thought was a bit on the light side for an Imperial Stout at first, and had a mildly sweet roasty mocha coffee note which lingered throughout. But then matured into a bitter-sweet dark malted coffee flavor with a big note of dark chocolate and a mild alcohol finish. The flavor lasted a little longer than average in duration following the swallow, with a mildly bitter coffee roastiness left behind.

Mouthfeel was somewhat dry in texture and quite full in body with the carbonation being rather flat.

Overall this was a very tasty Imperial Stout that did a great job of concealing the high ABV, while allowing a smooth roastiness to settle in for the long hall, which in turn created a superb drinkability...

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Photo of DannyDan
4.52/5  rDev +24.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a brownish black body with a large tan head that goes away rather quickly. The retention is very good, but has ok lacing and moderate carbonation. The smell is a nice roasted coffee and dark chocolate along with more dark chocolate. The taste starts out with some creamy coffee followed by some dark chocolate and roasted malts. The back of the mouth has a little bitterness to it, but overall the taste is well balanced. the mouthfeel is very smooth, creamy and silky feel in the mouth. This is a really really great beer to enjoy. Doesn't seem to be as full bodied as other Imperial Stouts I have tried, but still satisfying after one, even though two is always nice when it comes to a great tasting beer.This is going on my must have stout list, and I recommend anyone that likes stouts or imperial stouts to try this.

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Photo of stageseven
4.06/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ap - pretty much no head. Black and pretty much opaque. Doesn't really cling to the glass like the thicker Russian imperial stouts tend to.

Ar - nice and strong roasted and dark chocolate aroma. Maybe a but of alcohol but not much.

T - tons of roast up front with bitter dark chocolate mixed in. Actually a little silky. Not overwhelming, but balanced bitterness in the back. Could use some more coffee and bitter flavors but there's definitely nothing objectionable.

M - moderately heavy body, on the slightly more carbonated side. A bit warming but not too much. Some coating in the mouth.

D - good flavor. Not a huge RIS but all the flavors blend well. Kind of an every day RIS. Easy to drink, and goes well with food without being too filling.

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Peg Leg Imperial Stout from Heavy Seas Beer
3.63 out of 5 based on 1,414 ratings.
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