Sue
Yazoo Brewing Company

SueSue
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Style:
Smoked Beer
Ranked #3
ABV:
9%
Score:
92
Ranked #2,661
Avg:
4.14 | pDev: 10.39%
Reviews:
262
Ratings:
885
From:
Yazoo Brewing Company
 
Tennessee, United States
Avail:
Rotating/Seasonal
Wants
  215
Gots
  204
SCORE
92
Outstanding
SueSue
Notes: The south is famous for smoking everything. Why not beer? Sue is a big, rich, smoky malt bomb of a beer, with mellow smokiness coming from barley malts smoked with cherry wood, and assertive bitterness from Galena and Perle hops to cleanse the finish.

Original tap version was 7.5% ABV, bottled version is up to 9%.
Reviews: 262 | Ratings: 885 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by cjgiant:
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cjgiant from District of Columbia

4.14/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle, no apparent date:
Pours easily into the glass, the black body filling about 60% of the glass as the head strains to crest the lip. A nice light brown head that seems creamy but falls at a moderate pace. Thick tan collar doesn't provide any lacing, but does give a little show of froth on each sip.

Wondering if the bottle was originally clear before the fire struck the warehouse, turning the glass brown and the beer a nice, lingering smoked note - like the fire was out long ago, but the smoke was not let to escape quickly. I more coffee-leaning malt roastiness sneaks through this, but it does have a woody to maybe just slightly citrusy hop note.

A bit watery up front, while the flavors seem to sit back, figuring out how to hit my palate. The smoke starts walking towards me first, yelling across the field. As I really start to hear what he is yelling, a charge of all flavors comes - light brownie, weak coffee, cigar tobacco, and smokiness from a smoker in the backyard on the weekend. A little on the malty side in front behind the shroud of smoke, it becomes bitter in the back - citrus rind and lightly charred wood (no doubt smoke influenced).

I think I am a fan of cherry wood smoked beers. Made one with a friend once, and am getting a little bit of what I thought I had forgotten about that beer. If this beer had a little more feel - either heft or carbonation - to go with the nice flavor levels, it'd probably be get a tenth or more points from me.

Jun 07, 2017
More User Reviews:
Photo of Lare453
Lare453 from Florida

3.62/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2009 bottle

12 oz poured into a def glass

a dark coffee black, minimal head, light brown ring around the glass. no lacing.

s heavy malt, coffee, grain, light booze

t Heavy dry erase marker throughout... Light coffee, chocolate...

m medium... very smooth, light carbonation.

o eh....

Oct 08, 2012
Photo of NODAK
NODAK from Tennessee

3.15/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Smell is certainliy smoky, with undertones of burnt malts and dark chocolate. But certainly a lot of wood-fired smoke smell.

Pours completely black with a nice, tight black head in my glass.

Taste is perhaps even smokier than I thought it would be. Basically, there's a roasted/burnt malt backbone with a lot of liquid smoke (or so it tastes) poured in. Wow. They weren't kidding around when they said that this is a smoked beer on the label. Nice bitterness on the finish, though I wouldn't say it's assertive. It's enough to finish out the beer somewhat dryly at least.

This is the type of beer that I would drink one of, and one of only. It's so smoky it's almost novelty to me.

Mar 17, 2012
Photo of OakedCanuck
OakedCanuck from Washington

3.8/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into cervoise

A - Pours a dark brown to black. Minor tan/mocha head. Slippery lacing

S - A charcoal smokiness to it. Roasted barley and bittersweet chocolate. Some lighter coffee accents

T - Very smoky, not expecting that. Woody with a some nuttiness to it. Chocolate, coffee, and leather.

M - An almost lactic creaminess. Medium to heavy. Slightly drying

O - Good overall, wasn't expecting that much smoky 'outdoor' feel to it. Interesting take on an american porter. Decent.

Apr 08, 2011
Photo of jrallen34
jrallen34 from Illinois

3.28/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12oz bottle drank from a perfect pint glass, thanks to Chris...Light black pour with a light tan head, good retention and lacing...The aroma and taste are all smoke, but its charcoal and ashy smoke, ciggarette ash like, but not that bad. Some coffee notes to try balance this, but the ash dominates. A few sips of this is enough, not very drinkable. You can always tell which is the last tick of the night.

Jan 01, 2011
Photo of haddon
haddon from Kentucky

3.85/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

aggressive pour into a pint glass that was black as night with little to no head

wow, with all this smoke on the nose it feels like I'm sitting around a campfire. malts, coffee, dark chocolate... but mostly smoky.

smoke flavor hits hard and quick. there is an interesting chocolate covered cherry that follows. mild bitterness with a leathery finish

medium body with a velvety feel. one of the more fuller bodied porters I've ever had

although I wouldn't have more than one in a setting, I found this quite unique. the sour cherry wrapped in leathery smoke was something I've never experienced before. I usually find porters a little too watered down for my liking but I will definitely go back to Sue. proud to call myself a Nashvillian.

Dec 22, 2010
Photo of KevinHollowell
KevinHollowell from Tennessee

3.4/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Bought a 4 pack here in Nashville for $6. I waited until I drank all 4 to review this.

The appearance is good, pouring a brown color with a generous head that slowly fades into a ring of bubbles. Smells like wood that was burned 2 days ago. I expected this to be similar to a scottish-style ale, which I like, but it wasn't at all. It tastes too much like actual wood. It literally tastes like liquid smoke, which isn't necessarily a terrible thing. This beer defintely has a very unique flavor. The mouthfeel is very thin but goes down smooth. It is a very different beer and not one that I would buy again.

Jan 25, 2010
Photo of weeare138
weeare138 from Pennsylvania

3.73/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appears a dark mahogany toned brown with a dark tan head that slowly fades into a small cap. Scattered bits of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of smoked malt, cocoa, roasted nuts, and ripe fruit.
Taste is of the mentioned aromas with brown sugar, dark fruit, and a touch of beef jerky.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, chewy, and meaty with light booziness showing itself.

May 26, 2010
Photo of akorsak
akorsak from Pennsylvania

3.63/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to unclejedi for this 12 oz bottle.

A: The porter is nearly black, a roasted deep ruby red color. Those red highlights come out only when the glass is held up to light. A half a finger of tan head gradually whittled down to a thin band.

S: The nose is unusual, very sweet with a sour cherry and smoked malts tandem. The aroma has vinegary highlights, a New Glarus olde English porter touch (although not nearly as sour). Syrupy caramel is evident underneath.

T: Acrid malts, burnt and bitter, define the porter aspect. Plenty of caramel syrup sweetness helps to smooth out the rougher burnt flavors. Mild fruits, alongside the smoke, have a vinegary Flemish taste. The result is an interest flavor, olde-tymey and all. The goodness is that the strength isn't in your face.

M: The mouthfeel is both well-roasted and sweetly sour. I'm not sure what to think but the ale kinda works.

D: Very drinkable despite the 9% price tag. The sour aspect, intentional or not, works within the dark confines of the porter.

Nov 20, 2010
Photo of CliffBrake
CliffBrake from New Hampshire

3.56/5  rDev -14%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Opaque black showing a little deep red around the edges. No head with a vigorous pour, just a touch of foam along the sides of the glass.

Sharp nose of smoke, a bit of cherry and alcohol. Barbequed porter!

Smoked roasted malt character dominates the taste. Just a bit of sweetness and cherry manage to show through the main smokey note.

Mouthfeel is a little light compared to the big flavor and abv.

An interesting porter, probably better classed as a smoked beer.

Feb 03, 2012
Photo of Sammy
Sammy from Canada

3.85/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours black, smoke and grease aromas. Not as thick, but certainly as smokey and boozy as can be expected. Understated carbonation. Dangerously easy drinking, fairly one dimensional, a little roast and mollasses and complex smoke (cherry wood). Alcohol warming.Bottle from SilverX IP.

Jul 20, 2011
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79 from New York

3.8/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 04/30/11 notes. Poured into my SAVOR snifter.

a - Pours a pitch black color with an inch of tan head and light carbonation evident.

s - Smells of smoke, bacon, roasted malts, toasted malts, and light coffee.

t - Taste again is lots of smoke and bacon. Also some roasted malts, coffee, and light dark chocolate.

m - Medium body and low carbonation.

o - A pretty nice smoked porter. Lots of smoke and bacon in the nose and taste; reminds me of Beer Geek Bacon. Would have it again.

May 10, 2011
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ChainGangGuy from Georgia

3.78/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Slips out a dark brown, near black with a sudsy, somewhat smallish, off-white head.

Smell: Ashen roasted barley notes gnarled with smoke fumes and smoothed over with simple chocolate and caramel sauce.

Taste: Sugar-flecked roastiness with tastes of unsweetened chocolate, spent coffee grinds, and light caramel. Particularly sweet, this Sue beer. Subtle underlying fruitiness. Big taste of smoked malt throughout. Small helping of spicy, earthy hops and overall bitterness. Smokey, sugary, roasty finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation. Fairly smooth mouthfeel.

Drinkability: An interesting brew, Yazoo. The ratcheted up sweetness hampers the drinkability somewhat, but, overall, it's still pretty good.

Dec 30, 2010
Photo of trxxpaxxs
trxxpaxxs from New York

3.58/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to pitasoup for this one...

Nice dark chocolate color, it looks more like cola than motor oil. Decent caramel head that dissipates quickly, not much lacing left on the glass as it drinks.

I'm not actually getting much in the way of smell with this beer. I get little hints of cherry and chocolate. Some malty sweetness and toasted grain aromas, but nothing powerful.

The taste reminds me of raisins. Tons of raisins. The chocolate, cherry, roasted malts, and grains come through a bit too.

Smooth drinkin' brew. Good mouthfeel. I could have a few of these in a row, but at 9%, the booze would catch up to me quickly. It's a decent beverage.

Mar 02, 2011
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BEERchitect from Kentucky

4.09/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nashville's premiere brewery puts forth such a dark ale, that it epitomizes all that's masculine in taste- then calls it "Sue" much like a Johny Cash song but in beer form.

Toasted and chocolaty, the beer's upstart is robust but shies away from roast. Dark coffee, cocoa, nuttiness and the whimsy of campfire resonate on the nose and laying firmly on the early palate. Its creamy sweetness is laden with toffee and root beer character.

Its middle really opens up with more complex fruit and spice notes- grilled grape, apple, plum and date meld seamlessly with a fennel, aniseed, mesquite and overall licorice note that gives rise to the more dominant bittersweet chocolates, coffee and charred toast flavor.

Spicy and semi-dry, the beer trends toasty with woodsy bitterness, smoky cocoa and a spicy alcohol warmth. its long and marginal savoriness keeps the next sip beckoning though the first sip extends indefinitely.

Sue borrows the fruit and sweetness from British porter roots, but can't ignore its drier, toastier, more bitter and warmer American indigenous character. And that's all evident in the beer's dry honeycomb structure of a head that hovers over an espresso-dark body.

May 08, 2014
Photo of russpowell
russpowell from Arkansas

3.59/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cheers to the Nashvillian for this one! Thanks John!

Pours an effervescent mahogany with a finger of mocha head. Not much lacing or head retention, but a nice viscosity to it

S: Charred grain & oaky smoke, a touch of vanilla

T: Charred, grain, much smokeyness (mesquite & oak ) & a touch of cocoa & vanilla up front. Dryness & herbal hops kick in once warms along with more smokeyness & lust a bit of vanilla. Finishes smokey with slight caramel & vanilla sweetness

MF: Chewy, low carbonation, thins out a touch once warm

This one started strong, but faded as it warmed. A nice smoked porter that drinks way too easy for the ABV

Oct 15, 2011
Photo of jmarsh123
jmarsh123 from Indiana

3.83/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours black with a small tan head and little lacing.

Very smoky nose. It smells like someone is frying bacon. A little bit of burnt malt as well.

Smoke dominates the flavor as well. Not as much bacon as the nose, but more of a general wood smoke flavor. Bitter coffee and roasted malts also play in with a little hop presence.

Pretty good creamy mouthfeel with lowish carbonation. Alcohol is well hidden.

There are some good things going on here, but the smoke is a bit too overpowering to let everything else shine through. If it were dialed back just a hair, this beer would be fantastic.

Jun 18, 2012
Photo of larryi86
larryi86 from Delaware

4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Blind tasting
Based off of the nose and looks I am thinking it is a porter over 8%, initial rating are based on that style in mind

A- Black with a two finger mocha head. 4.25

S- Bakers chocolate, some smoked malts, roasted coffee, touch of pale malts, some piney hops. 4.25

T- Smoked malts, hints of wood, an almost meat like quality to to the smokiness, touch of sweet malts and dark fruits, some dark chocolate, roasted coffee. 4.5

M- Smooth, full body, chewy. 4.5

O- A very well done smoked porter/stout. Big flavors without be overly smoky. Would definitely pick this up if I had the chance, seems like a good beer to age. 4.25

Oct 08, 2017
Photo of otto251068
otto251068 from Michigan

3.48/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Sam Adams pint glass. "Bottled on date" is printed on the label but no date is printed on the space where it should be.

Appearance: Pours a very dark chocolate brown, bordering on black but definite brown around the edges. Stunning milk chocolate colored head rises an inch, then slowly fades. The head itself is packed with large and tiny bubbles which leaves a great lacing. After the head fades a thin layer is all that is left.

Smell: Rich bittersweet chocolate, charred oak, and smoke kick things off. Very pleasant with a balanced malt aroma. Quite a bit of earthy hops come out on the pour.

Taste: Plenty more bittersweet chocolate, along with some cocoa nibs hit the tongue immediately. Very rich and in your face. More smoky/roasted/burnt flavors that match the aroma. The flavors are bold and really wake the taste buds. Quite a bit of earthy hops fight through to provide bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with high carbonation. Maybe a little on the lighter side when it comes to the body. Carbonation level is surprisingly high but pleasant.

Overall: Very flavorful and rich. The overwhelming flavors make this one a sipper. The 9.0% ABV is well hidden. The smokiness is harsh and bold, but this beer is good overall.

Feb 11, 2012
Photo of ksimons
ksimons from Illinois

3.8/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-almost black, with just a hint of brown when held up to the light, fingers worth of tan head that sticks to the glass

S-roasted malts, molasses, light smokiness, and hops

T-Rich roasted malt and bitter hops, coffee, dark chocolate, and a slight sourness that I can't place.

M-medium body, light carbonation, dry smoky finish

Overall a pretty decent beer, and a new brewery for me. Easy to drink even with a 9%ABV. Would have gotten a higher score with a fuller body, but a nice beer nonetheless.

Oct 27, 2011
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ArrogantB from Colorado

2.62/5  rDev -36.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Big thanks to grownfool for sending me this as part of a recent trade. This was definitely smoky and I hate to say this but there is something about rauch/smoked beers that is similar to wet dog! Cheap beef jerky too. Band aids almost. The flavor is a little bit of chocolate then some smoky, rubbery flavors. I'm sorry but I cannot fuck with smoked beers (yet).

Oct 05, 2010
Photo of witster18
witster18 from Tennessee

3.65/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is perhaps the smoothest 9 percenter on the planet. For that reason alone Yazoo Sue deserves serious props. This offering along with their Hop Project are probably their best.

Pours dark near black with redish highlights and a little head(no surprise given the abv)

Sue is a roasty, figgy, smokey porter that is highly drinkble at 9%.

Unlike most big, dark beers.. I like this colder and not above 45 degrees... It really hides it's abv at colder temps and can get you in a little trouble in that aspect. This is a BIG beer with a mid-beer-range flavor... the fig/raisin aspects are halted by the smoke and the dryness in the aftertaste, and the sweetness is balanced by the same characteristics...

This is a really fine offering.

May 15, 2011
Photo of PEBKAC
PEBKAC from New York

3.82/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from my country music star JohnQVegas. Hibernating in my neighbor's kitchen cupboard for what I was led to believe, was over a year. Bottle notch says third week of December(09?). WTF was that guy waiting for?!

Improper Carlseberg pils glass. Full, tan head. Black body, ruby hued. Minimal lace. Constant froth.

Smell is grilled, meaty charred fat, with a bit of sharp dark chocolate. Touch of lactose it seems. Spicy, though subdued hops, round it off nicely.

Taste is subtle roast, rich malt, licorice, earth & soot. A tree bark bitterness. Unwarranted coffee as it warms. Grain & ash finish.

Full feel. Mild carbonation. Balanced alcohol.

Does this come in a six pack? Nice. Send me another one D. :)

Mar 22, 2011
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lespaulrocker from Tennessee

3.85/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

A: Near black, vaguely red if held to light. Small tan head, minimal lacing.

S: Smoky. Cherry. A little bit like BBQ but I think it's just the smoke.

T: Malts, smoke and charcoal, a bit of cherry. Kind of bitter, but not too bitter. Cherry finish.

M: Smooth with a bit of carbonation, not too much. Full body.

D: Sipper. Due to the high level of alcohol and smoke it's a slow drinker. But incredibly enjoyable.

I've been wanting this for quite some time, and it completely lived up to my expectations.

Oct 11, 2010
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GuinnessAtRogerWilco from New Jersey

3.88/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Was given a 750ml bottle by one of my good beer customers, so thanks to him for sharing something we don't get in our area.
Poured in a Sam Adams 'perfect pint' glass.
AP: 3/4" froathy cream coloured head that dissipated down to 1/4", rich dark brown to near black colour
AR: Chocolate was the first aroma to hit me followed by a subtle hint of smoked ham then molasses takes over with hints of brown bread. For a smoked beer I was expecting more of it in the aroma and if it had been more prominent I would have given a higher score for the smell.
T: As with the aroma, I found the smoke aspect lacking. However, the rest of the flavours I found very enjoyable. Again with chocolate and molasses with a bit of brownie batter and at the finish a slick oily soft hint of smoke, but not enough IMO to balance the sweeter flavours. The warmer this brew gets the smoke flavour starts to poke through a little more, but not quite enough for me.
M: Very creamy with low/moderate carbonation and a bit silky on the tongue.
OV: An enjoyable tasty beer, but when I compare this to what it's supposed to be (a smoke beer) I can't rate it as high as I'd like. If the smoke flavours were more pronounced in the taste this would be an exceptional beer, but I just didn't get enough of it.

May 07, 2013
Sue from Yazoo Brewing Company
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 885 ratings