S J Klein's picture

Black Cauldron Imperial Stout

September, 2015
Judges Rating: 
20 / 24
5 / 6
31 / 40
8 / 10
Overall Impression: 
16 / 20

This Imperial Stout is deep, dark and almost black in the glass. Its brown head leaves no lacing but sticks to the glass, belying its strength. The slightly vegetal nose has aromas of coffee, warm toffee, alcohol and hints of caramel. Did I mention alcohol? The flavor hits you with molasses, cocoa nibs, burnt sugar and a round, deep bitterness on the back of the tongue, though it's surprisingly not bitter up front despite all the dark malts. An almost syrupy sweetness accompanies all of this roastiness. It is described as having smoked malts but I didn't get any smokiness in the flavor or aroma, unless that was the burnt sugar and caramel notes peeking through. It's thick and rich in the mouth, though all the alcohol lightens up the mouthfeel and contributes a significant heat. It finishes a little rough, but not unpleasantly so.

Very approachable for such a big, dark beer, and not a bad way to end the night.