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Harpoon Chocolate Stout | Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

281 Reviews
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Harpoon Chocolate StoutHarpoon Chocolate Stout

Brewed by:
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
Massachusetts, United States | website

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.90%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Harpoon Chocolate Stout is brewed with an abundance of chocolate malt and a touch of chocolate.

40 IBU

Added by Brad007 on 10-24-2008

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Reviews: 281 | Ratings: 820
Photo of StonedTrippin
4.15/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

if you are a chocoholic, this is your beer. probably the most chocolatey of any beer ive ever tasted. its impressively chocolately! wow. the pour is dense and black, a lot like hersheys syrup in both color and viscosity, small tan head fades fast. the nose is not as sweet as it should be for how much chocolate is the in the flavor, but you know its coming from one whiff. so rich and decadent, like dessert. the flavor is sweet milk chocolate all the way through, like a candy bar really, but not offensively sugary at all, its very palatable, i love the dark roasted malts with the gourmet chocolate flavor. its a really awesome holiday beer, it blows people away everytime i share this with anyone, the chocolate is just so intense. huge body, sticky thick, with mellow carbonation but it doesnt feel heavy. this is the highlight of the harpoon winter pack, and a very very unique and special beer. a solid A in my book.

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Photo of metter98
3.53/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is very dark brownish amber in color (close to near black) and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high tan head that died down but never completely faded away and left a ring of bubbles on the surface around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light to moderately strong aromas of milk chocolate and lactose in the nose.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste has flavors of semisweet milk chocolate and cocoa nibs along with some hints of lactose.
M: It feels medium-bodied and a bit thin on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is easy to drink because it isn’t very filling. It seems like a hybrid between a milk stout and a stout.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.82/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A pretty safe beer with big cocoa notes and light on body.

A very dark ale pours with light carbonation, low-lying head formation and fair retention. Very light on lacing. A calm looking beer reminescent of cask ales.

Big on bitter chocolates, burnt cocoa, and roasted coffee flavors and aromas. Quite nutty, aggressive on chocolate, vanilla, and milk-like sweetness. (seems a bit more tilted toward a Foreign Export Stout than American Stout). Hops contribute to a bitter balance but no real flavor or aroma. No outstanding esters or phenols, this is a pretty straight forward beer.

The body is light in comparison to the boldness of flavors, leaving the beer a bit empty, thin, and allowing a harsher grain texture to come through a bit more than it should.

A nice beer that needs some work but could be great.

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Photo of Thorpe429
4.35/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes.

From the start, I'll say one thing about this beer--it's totally one dimensional. The second thing? I didn't care. Pours a very nice deep dark brown color with a slight mocha head. The nose is just a straight onslaught of chocolate notes. A bit of dark chocolate as well as some Hershey's syrup. The taste is more chocolate with just the tiniest hint of roast, but, who knows, maybe that's just coming from the chocolate as well. Nice somewhat full feel with good carbonation. Really nice and tasty.

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Photo of oberon
4.09/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Sticks and Stones.Poured ink black into a standard pint glass with a thin almost non existent head atop.Aromas were all fudge with some underlying roast,a dessert beer no doubt.Big sweetness from the fudge-like chocolate flavors on the palate,some underlying vanilla but the chocolate is the major player here.There is just enough roast and dryness to keep it from being overly cloying.Take this beer for what it is,it's a sweet chocolate stout and it's true to form.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.48/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Dark chocolate brown that might not have been opaque if this was a sunny morning rather than an overcast one. Generous burnt orange edges are seen along the bottom edge of the glass, while an attractive crown the color of coffee-with-cream rests up top. Enough sudsy lace sticks in the end.

The aroma is reminiscent of chocolate baked goods (brownies or cake) rather than beer. Maybe that's because 'an abundance' of chocolate malt and 'a touch' of chocolate was used. Truthfully, it smells a little odd, though not unpleasant.

Chocolate Stout's flavor has the same sort of vibe. Even if the brewery didn't tell us that chocolate was added, it was obvious from the first sip (actually, the first sniff). 40 IBUs seems like a lot for a beer of this ABV. Less bitterness and more sweetness would have been better.

Specific flavors include bittersweet brownies, black coffee and bitter tea leaves. Maybe a smidgen of citrus zest, but it isn't a grapefruit bomb by any means. While hopheads will find a lot to like, the black IPA similarities don't really work here.

It's extremely unlikely that 'an abundance' of barley malt was used. If it was, it certainly isn't reflected in the mouthfeel. The beer is on the light side of light-medium and isn't the least bit creamy. Add lackluster carbonation and this is clearly the lowlight.

Harpoon Chocolate Stout is probably best viewed as an Irish dry stout with much more hoppiness than is typical for that style. It's interesting and was fun to drink, but I have little or no need to do so again.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.03/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle - $1.79 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Best By: 02/15/13.

Appearance: Pours out a near black body with a frothy, medium-small, tan-hued head.

Smell: As half-expected, a chocolate scent leans forward in the nose, rounded by some coffee-hinted roasted malts, a jumpy dark fruitiness, and some vanilla flavoring.

Taste: Dark malts, with a rummy plum note treated to a full dose of Hershey's-brand Chocolate Syrup, leaving me left feeling as though I've been given something a tad bit artificial. Hmm, it's not really what I had expected. Some coffee and vanilla hints, with a sustained fruit contour, then it all kind of just washes out, flavorwise, leaving just some roasty tangy quality and a carbonic hint at the very end.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Overall: While not anticipating unrivaled greatness, I had fully assumed I was jumping into a downright solid brew. Instead, I kind of didn't like it.

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Photo of mikesgroove
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

dark brown, nearly opague with a nice tight tan head, very quick fade to a nice film with a good bit of lace. Lots of audible carbonation when poured was definatly noticeable.

y nice robust caramel smell mixed with aromas of coffee and hints of roasted nuts and a touch of chocolate., great frothy and fluffy mouthfeel and just all around benefit to the palate. Lots of caramel flavors and again a bit of a smoked hint at the back. Small flavors of roasted nuits, chocolate and hints at black coffee. Very nice, but the mouthfeel was absolutly pefect. Light, balanced, a drinkers stout.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.7/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a dark brown color, with a thin beige head that fades slowly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of milk chocolate, roasted malts and a faint touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out creamy and sweet with flavors of milk chocolate and coffee. The malt character is hearty but a little bit thin for the style. The hop presence is very mild but about where it should be for the style. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, good kick, good representation of style, while there might be better beers in the style this is still a very solid beer that is worth drinking for a long time.

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Photo of chinchill
3.3/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle (dated 2011) served in a pint glass.

Pours nearly black and apparently clear, but leaves slight reddish-brown highlights at edges of glass. Small and relatively short-lived tan.

Aroma - pronounced aroma of chocolate (think brownies and hot chocolate mix) with a background of roasted malt and vanilla. Sweet.

T - Follows aroma to some extent, with pronounced chocolate flavor. Sweet, perhaps a bit too much so for my taste, but not cloying and with notable bitterness as well. Harpoon's website says IBU = 40, but it doesn't seem that high. Lingering chocolate flavors plus chocolate malt and a hint of coffee in the finish. Although relatively strong, the chocolate flavors are too much like Hersheys milk chocolate and not enough like a fine dark chocolate.

M - near medium body; creamy smooth; low carbonation.

O - One of the most chocolate flavored beers I've tried. I appreciated the brewer's boldness but this brew may have gone too far with the cocoa for some. I found the level fine but was disappointed with the particular quality of the chocolate flavor and the fact that the flavors did not gel as well as one might hope. Should work well as a dessert beer.

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Photo of superspak
3.68/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, best before 3/15/2013. Pours clear almost pitch black color with a 1 finger fairly dense mocha head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings to the glass. Aromas of big milk chocolate, chocolate syrup, toffee, vanilla bean, light roasted malt, caramel, and light coffee. Very nice aromas with big chocolate notes and nice balance. Taste of milk chocolate, vanilla bean, caramel, toffee, roasted malt, toast, coffee, and light cream. Slight coffee bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of milk chocolate, vanilla, caramel, toast, toffee, roasted malt, and coffee on the finish for a good bit. Good flavor balance with a fair amount of robustness; but it feels a little watered down for a stout; zero cloying flavors are present after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a fairly creamy and slick mouthfeel that is ok; feels a bit thin. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a good sweet stout. Fairly robust with nice chocolate dessert flavor; and very smooth to drink. A nicely enjoyable offering.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.02/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I picked this up at wine source, enjoyed chilled from a Harpoon willybecker.

The color is a deep brown shade with opaque clarity and hues that border on black with a moderately tan cap which has good head retention and average bead. The smell is very nice with some cocoa noticeable immediately there is a hint of roasted and chocolate malt with subtle scent of sweetness which brings to mind vanilla with a creamy quality. The feel is very balance with I love, the malt roastiness is buoyed by some sweetness and there is a slight bitterness with gentle hop spice and mellow tinge of fruitiness. The feel is moderately roasty toward the end giving the impression of dryness with moderate carbonation lightening. The finish is basically semi-dry.

Thiis chocolate stout is tasty with plenty of chocolate malt up front, but it is no fudgesicle either. It is a solid base stout with some roasted malt character and there is a nice addition of cocoa giving a slight dessert like character with the general sweetness of the caramel in the malt. The taste is slightly bitter with some light herbal hop flavors in the background but generally this is a malt dominated beer with leaning more to the sweet side than dry which makes the taste seem fuller. I enjoyed this since it is not cloying yet it achieves the goal of incorporating the chocolate into the stout well, I would go for this again if the opportunity were to present itself.

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Photo of TMoney2591
4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Gale Sayers shaker pint glass.

This was a fairly unexpected bottle when I found it at Fresh Market. I don't really know why, it just was. Deal with it. it pours a straight onyx topped by a finger of wan ecru foam. The nose comprises chocolate syrup, light roasted malts, and a touch of oatmeal. The taste's chocolate more closely resembles dark baking chocolate than the aforementioned syrup, which allows the roasted malts and coffee to shine through, mild bitterness and all. The body is a strong medium, with a light carbonation and a nearly chewy feel. Overall, a pleasantly surprising bit o' tasty darkness.

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Photo of russpowell
3.77/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked this up in a wintry mix 12 pack back in early June. Was fairly impressed with this, review based on notes

Pours black with a finger of mocha head. Average head retention & lacing

S: Chocolate & vanilla

T: Chocolate, cocoa, & charred grain. Hints of vanilla as this warms, along with some cocoa powder. Finishes sweet, dry & with leafy hop bitterness along with charred grain & malty notes

MF: Medium bodied & creamy

One of the better choclate beers I've had recently. Would love to try a fresher one for comparison purposes

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Photo of smcolw
3.75/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Impressive three finger head; settles with a nice dome. Extensive spotty lace on the glass. Near black color; no light shines through.

Burnt toast aroma from extensive black patent. Dark, bitter chocolate smell--kinda a powdered cocoa nose.

More dark chocolate than the toast in the flavor. The body is too thin for the style, although the carbonation is relatively low. This makes the body slightly chewy. Interestingly, I taste a touch of children's aspirin in the background (the fake orange flavor kind). Light hop.

With a richer body, this would be a very nice stout.

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Photo of mdaschaf
3.27/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours a deep black with brown highlights when held up to the light. A one finger mocha colored head formed and dissipates quickly to a layer of very fine bubbles on top.

S: Lots of cocoa and milk chocolate. There is a little bit of roasted malt aroma at the back end, but the chocolate dominates.

T: Milk chocolate up front and some bitter dark chocolate through the midpalate. The finish is bitter and actually a bit unappealing.

M/D: On the lighter side of medium. Pretty easy drinking with a nice chocolate flavor as advertised. The aftertaste isn't great, but I didn't really expect this beer to be amazing.

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Photo of billab914
3.27/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Stone RIS glass. Poured dark brown in color with a half inch tan head rising from the top of the beer. The head quickly settled down to leave a thin ring around the edges of the glass and didn't leave any noticeable lacing on the sides.

The aroma has a nice milk chocolaty smell to it, almost like a Hershey syrup in chocolate milk type of flavor. Can't really say I get much else from it, pretty simple but an appealing chocolate aroma.

The taste has a milky chocolate flavor to it as well but it finishes with more of a dry, bitter, chocolate and almost smoky flavor in the finish. The finish also has a slight chalky taste and feel to it which isn't very appealing. I can't say the finish meshes well with the beer flavor overall, I liked the milky chocolate flavor but the bitter dryness just doesn't fit. It's almost like a chocolate milk finishing with a bitterness.

Mouthfeel is a little on the this side and carbonation is moderate. Drinkability is OK at best. I liked the aroma it had but the finish really ruined the flavor for me. The chocolate just really didn't meld together with the beer for me.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.43/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pitch black hue for the body with a nice full thick mocha tan head, nice even lacing between sips. Aroma dark malts herbal hops with a touch of cocoa powder. Flavor is sickengly straight forward with cocoa powder additions, I feel like I took a spoonful of Hershey's cocoa powder. Creamy milk finish with that cocoa dominance no real hop tones. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a sturdy carbonation level no overdone. Drinkability is solid a bit too dessert for my likings but if cocoa powder is your thing this beer gives it up.

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Photo of stakem
3.85/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brown bottle with a best by date of 2/15/10

Pours a very dark brown color with less than a finger of tanned head. Doesn't have much retension outside of a thin lace on top of the beer. Nose is a mixture of sweet milk chocolate in the front and blends to coffee in the finish but mostly dominated by the sweet chocolate aroma. Taste is chocolately upfront with a little burnt grain bitterness in the finish, taste blends from chocolate to coffee just like the aroma. Moderate to high amount of carb and thin bodied. Very drinkable and would have it again.

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Photo of jwc215
3.9/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Best by 2/15/10-

Pours black with very dark brown highlights on edges. A creamy thin brown head sits atop, leaving some lacing.

The smell is of chocolate syrup and cocoa powder with underlying bready notes - reminiscent of chocolate cake.

The taste is nice and chocolatey with breadiness and roast balancing the chocolate syrup sweetness. Sweet, but not too... Finish isn't quite abrupt, but could linger longer...

It hits full-bodied with a creamy texture. This is a nice choice for a chocolatey dessert brew that is not too overpowering.

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Photo of johnnnniee
3.48/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a solid dark brown with the faintest of ruby highlights and a 3 finger mocha head that dissipates but never really leaves. Tons of lace impales itself on the glass. I could smell chocolate as soon as I popped the cap on this one. Fresh ground coffee, milk chocolate, chocolate syrup, and some brown sugar and toffee round out the nose. Taste is mostly chocolate syrup, and seems artificial. Brown sugar toffee and butter round out the taste. Leaves a lingering bitter chocolate taste in the finish. Creamy mouthfeel, medium body, light carbonation. I liked this one a bit. I could see myself drinking a few of these, but the artificial chocolate twang is definitely a turn off.

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Photo of Billolick
3.52/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle, with "best by" dating etched onto the neck of the bottle of 03-15-09. Pours with little head developing above. A load of dark chocolate fudge brownies awakens the nostrils. More chocolate, fudge, chocolate syrup, chocolate bars, and then some more chocolate notes on the palate. I don't think they skimped on the chocolate on this one. None too subtle, not one I would go for again real soon. Likely would go well with a, you guessed it, chocolate dessert of some sort.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.07/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a tumbler pint, the beer is jet black, with an oily brown head that is densely packed, small, tight bubbles that form a half inch layer of foam. Decent lacing when you swirl the brew in the glass. The nose is all milk chocolate, and it smells like freshly melted, hot milk chocolate. Like you broke into the Hershey factory and took a bath in a vat of chocolate. My sweet tooth just creamed itself. Flavors are a bit more blended, with the chocolate front and center, but a good balance of dark roasted coffee to provide some bitterness to counter the sweet. A little burnt/charred character, also. Very well blended flavors keep the beer from being cloying or overly rich. Bravo. The aftertaste is fairly nondescript, with a slight milky flavor to it. The aftertaste is almost like when your mom made your chocolate milk for you, and by no means did she ever use enough syrup. That's the aftertaste, although as a child it was disappointing, it's fairly pleasant here. The finish is surprisingly dry, leaving a fairly clean palate behind to allow the drinker to continue the chocolatey indulgence. Very tasty brew, while still providing a good representation of the style.

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Photo of vfgccp
4.69/5  rDev +30.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Black-brown color. Nice medium-khaki head with moderate retention and low lace.

S - Fantastic nose absolutely loaded with caramelized grains, biscuit, milk chocolate, and mellow roast coffee.

T - Sweet, caramelized roast grains from front to back with a big chocolate presence. A delicate, raw, earthy grain flavor through the aftertaste stands as a reminder of how pleasant a stout can be when a simple grain bill is allowed to shine. What the flavor profile lacks in complexity it more than makes up in depth.

M - Thick and smooth with a touch of a creaminess. The sweetness lingers on the tongue with a mild dryness on the delayed back end.

O - A big, chewy stout with surprising drinkability, and a fantastic grain character. On the sweeter side of the style, but not to any determent imho.

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Photo of WesWes
3.15/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer pours a dark, black color with a very thin tan head that quickly fades to lacing. The aroma is decent. It has an over the top chocolate scent that boasts of cocoa and chocolate malts. The taste is average. It has a decent roasted feel with tons of chocolate flavoring added. This one is really horrible. It goes down with lots of prickly carbonation and finishes chalky with a hot cocoa taste. The mouthfeel is average as well. It is a medium/full bodied with too much CO2. This is a brew for the scrap heap. I was just starting to like Harpoon's beers again, but this one may have changed my mind.

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Harpoon Chocolate Stout from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
82 out of 100 based on 281 ratings.
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