Duck-Rabbit Rabid Duck | The Duck-Rabbit Craft Brewery

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Duck-Rabbit Rabid DuckDuck-Rabbit Rabid Duck

Brewed by:
The Duck-Rabbit Craft Brewery
North Carolina, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
The Duck-Rabbit's Imperial Stout is extremely big and robust. This special beer is thick, jet black and oily in texture. Complex flavors of roast malts dominate: bitter chocolate and espresso coffee especially. There is also a very big hop presence both for bittering and for aroma. At 10% alcohol by volume, this brew is made to be sipped and savored!

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-08-2005

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Ratings: 864 |  Reviews: 510
Photo of DonFrap
2.75/5  rDev -30.2%

Photo of MrIncognito
2.78/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a tumbler.

A - Thick engine oil black body with a 1/4inch tan head. Very nice lacing from having such a small head.

S - Very sweet and syrupy dark malt with ripe plums and a hint of cocoa. Not the coffee smell I'd anticipated.

T&M - The taste was overwhelmingly fruity and sweet. Dark malts and bitter chocolate try to mellow things out but it's just too coyingly sweet for me, and I generally like sweeter beers. Bit of a bitter afteraste that would be nice if my mouth was coated in sweet syrup. Very thick and chewy mouthfeel, which I like.

O - I just couldn't finish this one. I wanted to and I wanted to like it but it was just way to syrupy sweet for me. Almost like cola syrup with some hops and dark fruits. Would not do this again.

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Photo of bwiechmann
2.84/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Got this as a very generous extra from bs870621345 (thanks!). Poured from a 12oz bottle at cellar temp into a snifter.

A- Pours a very deep black with a respectable head for the style. It dissipates quickly, however, and left no lace.

S- Sweet, dark fruits. The lack of coffee and chocolate notes typical of the style was surprising. A load of alcohol covers up most complexities.

T- An atypical imperial stout. Dark fruits head up the charge followed by a punch-in-the-face roasted bitterness. The combo of lactic sweetness and the bitter finish don't mesh well. A lack of complexity is off-putting as well.

M- Good carbonation and substantial body, not bad here.

D- Not great due to the roasted bitterness. I enjoy bitter hop bombs but this bitterness is a different monster.

Overall, I am extremely glad I was able to try this beer but I don't think I would seek it out again.

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Photo of jessecarr
2.86/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A beer bro-ski scooped me one of these as a congrats for having a baby boy. I was excited to try this one, but I was not very satisfied at all. In fact, I came away forcing my self to finish it--something I didn't expect at all from this brew.

The appearance is wonderful. I noticed a bit of a oatmeal-y head quickly dissolve into a tiny ring. Black as hell. The appearance was great.

Nose-wise, it was a bit boozy, with all the imperial stout goodness one would expect.

Taste, the most important category by far for me, is where the beer fell... well... flat. Both literally and figuratively. The aftertaste is what is really surprisingly bad in this beer. It's pungent, like alcohol that turned strange in a bad homebrew. It takes like 5-10 seconds and then WHAM--you get socked with this nasty taste. Maybe I got a bad batch, but this beer left me very disappointed.

After thinking about this whole review process, I wonder if it's en vogue to just assume that the Imperial Russian's are all decent. I've been confused by the praise of more than a few RIS', including Ten Fidy, Jah-va (not a good beer, to me, at ALL), and now this one. Maybe the best of this variety is world-class, I agree, but let's not get excited with a "small batch" RIS just because. Let's make those beers prove themselves. Just my own 2 cents.

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Photo of Dope
2.86/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

A: Pours pitch black with a big fluffy medium brown head. Fades at a medium pace, leaving good lacework behind.

S: Smells like...meat. Like steak tips off the grille. Steak tips cooked in soy sauce. Kind of reminds me a little of Dark Lord (which was pure soy sauce). Very confusing aroma. It's not even that bad, just unusual.

T: Taste follows the nose. I get a little roasted malt and then it's pure meat. Then a little chocolate and tons of soy sauce. Finishes with a bitter and drying char character. What am I drinking?

M: Fairly heavy, a little chalky. Drying on the back end.

O: Well, there's a little roasted malt and a whole lot of meat and soy sauce. Only other beer that I've had like this was Dark Lord as I already mentioned, which was just soy sauce. I'm not sure if it's a brewing mistake or an infection or just a really strange beer, though they were both RISes. Hmph. Avoid if you dislike drinking meat and soy sauce.

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Photo of ChadQuest
2.86/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Color is black, a finger of dark tan head covers the top.
Aroma is on the dark tannic fruit end of the spectrum, but a touch of smooth espresso in there without a coarse roast presence, and a lactose like milky note too.
The flavors oddly remind me of a dark fruit with tannins like pomegranites or fermented cherries, and full of tannins. Really odd, and burnt flavors that i cant call roasted flavors. There is some leafy earthy notes like Tobacco, probally from whatever hops used, all around a unusual odd RIS.
The mouthfeel is great, nice and oily viscous, helps this one alot.

This beer grew on me the more i sipped it, i think it just hit me from a weird angle at first, but once i stopped making it fit my mold i started to enjoy it, i'd drink it again for sure.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
2.91/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured into a snifter.

3.0 A: Pitch black color. Only the slightest remnants of a tan head which fall quickly. I know DR likes minimal carbonation, but sheesh.

4.5 S: Lots of dark chocolate and burnt aromas. Tons of roasted barley. The alcohol comes across as if it were bourbon barrel aged. Prune like fruitiness. Pretty good.

2.5 T: Unfortunately, the taste isn't nearly as good as the nose. Burntness and roasted barley dominate without nearly enough balancing crystal and fruity sweetness. In fact, it's unbalanced to the point that it's barely drinkable.

2.5 M: Medium body. Low carbonation. Would prefer a thicker, chewy body but that isn't what it is. Not smooth as the alcohol and burntness blast the aftertaste.

2.0 D: I wasn't expecting this to be the mess that it is. I love burnt roasty flavors, but this is too much without anything to put it in check.

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Photo of brentk56
2.97/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a thick black color with virtually no head and lacing

Smell: Espresso and dark fruit, with fusel alcohol tones

Taste: Burnt toast with lots of char which masks some interesting licorice and dark fruit flavors (raisins and plums) that become more apparent after the swallow, though the burnt char flavor really dominates

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with low carbonation; some warmth in the gullet

Drinkability: Perhaps this was from a bad batch or it had been stored poorly before I got it, but this was really disappointing; I have had this beer previously and do not recall the carbonation and char flavors that marred this particular example; I'll try this another time and amend my review if it merits it

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Photo of buyyourfreedom
3/5  rDev -23.9%

Photo of huskermike12
3/5  rDev -23.9%

Photo of spitshaded
3/5  rDev -23.9%

Photo of 1424IpA
3/5  rDev -23.9%

Photo of adamdd
3/5  rDev -23.9%

Photo of spoonhawk
3/5  rDev -23.9%

Photo of pixieskid
3/5  rDev -23.9%

Photo of tcblack4d
3/5  rDev -23.9%

Photo of ktrillionaire
3.01/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to jahuneyc for this long-sought brew. Now let's see if its any good...

Best by 3/11...

A - The pour is shiny black, capped with a significant amount of mocha froth, and depositing a solid wall of lace upon the glass' side. It is either visibly on the thinner side for the style, or I am now prejudiced by my repeated exposure to the chunky viscosity that is CCB (Zhukov, Hunahpu...)

S - The nose is unusually sweet, like a Milk Stout; this is my first impression. I get small roast-y notes, some green grass and ester-y fruitiness. Surprisingly devoid of deep roast character i.e. coffee, chocolate, etc. Smells smaller than an RIS.

T - Initial impression: (slight) disappointment. The depth of character is lacking in the flavor. The aromas discerned by the nose are not improved or expanded upon. There is a basic roastiness that seems to be fused with a slight lactic tartness, and there you have the malt side... There is green grassy hop that doesn't mesh. Finally, there is a sweetness that melds with the alcohol and yeast-driven esters that lends an interesting but not entirely well-placed fruitiness to the brew. This is not bad. It just isn't good, either.

M - Perfect creaminess, but a bit thin. Close to nailing it.

D - A letdown, overall. The D-R Milk Stout is better.

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Photo of cxg231
3.01/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

I understand that high abv beers tend to be on the sweeter side in order to have enough fermentable sugars, but this is very sticky sweet. I bought a case after reading the reviews here, expecting a malty sweetness balanced well by hops, which is not the case. If you like sticky sweet malts this beer is for you, the hops don't make much of an appearance or an impression.

Pours dark and viscious with almost no head, even with a vigerous pour. Smell is dominated by sweet malts. Taste is as described above. The mouthfeel is very nice, rich and velvety.

Drinkability is low for my tastes.

I can tell this is a beer crafted with care and top quality ingredients, but it's just not for me.

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Photo of 7ways
3.06/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Honestly, my expectations may have been too high, but I'm a little disappointed.

Lovely appearance, damn near jet black. Pours with a thin tan head. Looks like a black wine. Smells like burnt chocolate, burnt coffee, burnt...something. Vinous. OK.
Taste is roasty as hell and sickly sweet. That's about it. I feel like they could just call it Duck-Rabbit Double Milk Stout. A little cloying. Some licorice in the background. The alcohol is mildly astringent, but for 10%, it's not bad. The biggest problem I had was the feel; kind of like cheap cough syrup.

Not something I would buy again, but if it was on tap at Trappeze, I would definitely give it a shot.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.08/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottle courtesy of Moejuck: Poured a deep black color stout with a small dirty brown color head with average retention and some lacing. Aroma of coffee is quite dominating with some weird dry hops. Taste is a mix between some dry coffee, some bitter roasted malt and a dry ending with some hops. Body is quite full with some low carbonation and no alcohol was discernable. I thought the taste was just way too dry to be enjoyable and would have appreciated some sweetness to balance this thing out. Quite glad I got the chance to try this but can’t say I truly enjoyed the experience.

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Photo of jampics2
3.08/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle into my Duvel tulip. Best by date of 3/2011, consumed a month before that date.

This beer has great color but not exactly the best head or lace ever. But a quick swirl reawakens the brown foam and it stays for a bit before disintegrating into the night below. Midnight black, to be precise. No light escapes the viscous body.

The smell is odd. I let it warm up to almost room temp before tasting because the nose threw me off. There was initially a sour twang to this, but now it's becoming more of a burned acrid note. There's a ton of fruit like black cherry and a wicked chocolate base. More dark chocolate and molasses emerge as it warms. No hints of sweetness.

The taste is also just a bit off. It has a huge sour fruit component that almost comes off as a acidic roast. Besides that, there's a touch of soy and a huge roasted malt base. Some stale coffee and a lingering, dry, bitter finish. This is way too burned and tart, I'm sort-of dissapointed. There's a big boozy presence and the flavors don't just fall short of masking the burn, they actually may be making it worse.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied. It's not exactly a milkshake of a stout, but it's acceptable. The carbonation is fine and adds just enough for this to avoid being syrupy or sticky. I'm not a fan of this beer. The flavors didn't mesh and the elements that did stand out felt out of place. Certainly a huge mis-step after the tremendous Duck Rabbit Milk Stout.

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Photo of badbeer
3.09/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appears black in the glass with a light mocha colored head that retains pretty well. Roasted charcoal aromas paired with some earthy hoppiness, booze, and vinous smells. Taste begins quite ashy and earthy, maybe a bit vegetal too. It does transform into sweeter caramel flavors as it sits on the tongue, with a roasty finish, but doesn't start off good and finishes rather weak. I think I also got some lactose and cherry flavored Tootsie-Pop flavors too. Nice thick, full body, but it is too carbonated, which takes a way a little. This just seemed to be missing a lot for me, maybe I'll need to visit this one again sometime.

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Photo of jnn4v
3.09/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

A: Pretty much pitch black. Doesn't allow light to pass through. Moderate amount of dark head that, as it dies down, turns a slightly lighter tan color. Appears to be thick.

S: Not a very strong scent. Very subtle coffee scents. Some bittersweet chocolate as well. Maybe some maltiness as well, but not a whole lot here.

T: Sort of a tangy sweetness. Odd for an imperial stout. Starts on the sides of the tongue and ends on the tip. I'd actually call it more of a sweet and sour flavored stout than anything else. There are coffee and chocolate notes, of course, but this is odd overall. Some of the ABV comes through as well.

M: Doesn't feel quite as thick as it looks. Moderate carbonation.

D: Not sure I'd want this again, unless this happens to be a bad bottle and it usually tastes different.

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Photo of taylorhamrick
3.12/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pitch black and shiny color. There's a big brown fluffy head that stays around a while with some good lacing. Looks spot on. Nice. The smell is really great. A nice roasty backbone with some sweet notes. Not a strong whiff of alcohol, good balance in the smell. The taste doesn't quite meet my expectations. A good balance, not a strong alcohol presence. Too much black patent malt in this one, and also a bit estery. It gives it a kind of oily, slick feel and kills every bit of sweetness. I hate to be to poetic, but its kind of purple velvet in liquid form. You do get a taste of the roasted malts, and its drinkable and enjoable, but the taste isn't exactly for me. It's like a nice experiment that ought to be improved upon in the future. There are certainly nice qualities here.

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Photo of HosP
3.14/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured 12 oz into a snifter.

A- Pours black, no light coming through this one. Very dark khaki head to this. Goes away rather quickly, to soon really.

S- Hmm, boozey. Tough to get past the boozy smell in this. Some hints of dark fruits in there. Maybe a bit of coffee notes, but tough to detect.

T- Sweeter taste right away with some dark fruit flavors. Bitterness comes up in the middle. Some roasted malts mixed in at the end. Interested RIS, not much coffee or chocolate flavors really noted.

M- Medium to full body. Moderate carbonation. Dry in the mouth.

D- Not sure how I feel about this beer. Not what I expected from a RIS at all. The balance and flavors just aren't there. That being said, it is different and still not bad. Maybe down the road I'll try this one again and see what I think after drinking a few more RIS's.

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Duck-Rabbit Rabid Duck from The Duck-Rabbit Craft Brewery
3.94 out of 5 based on 864 ratings.
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