Style: Imperial/Double American Stout with Coffee and Oatmeal
Malts: Two-Row Pale, Flaked Oats, Flaked Barley, Chocolate, Black, Roasted Barley
Coffee: Premium blend of Costa Rican, Guatemalan, & Zimbabwe
From: Athens, GA
Brewer’s Note: “Black as night, this coffee stout is thick, rich and full of real coffee flavor. Brewed with a special blend of beans from all over the world developed and roasted specifically for Terrapin by our friends at Jittery Joe’s Coffee right here in Athens, Ga. This unique blend of coffee produces a robust and flavorful beer that will leave you asking why not beer for breakfast!”
The beer’s label is goofy and cluttered. I do like the cartoon of this turtle, as he is decked out in some chef apparel and is cooking up a storm, but the beer’s title font and all of the text on the bottom of the label are confusing and cluttered, and take away from the label. The color scheme is alright, and even the font coloring is well chosen, and pops to the eye, but the clutter on the bottom of the label really loses it points. The label is worthy of scrapbooking because of its popularity, but is not worthy of shelving.
The beer pours like thin, black motor oil with coffee brown tints. The beer pours with a small dark khaki head that quickly fades into a ring of tight small bubbles around the glass. In body, the beer is impenetrable to the eye. It sits in the glass as a dark and brooding enigma. The beer leaves a splotchy and light lacing, leaving slick dots of bubbles on the glass. On the nose, the beer smells of big meaty coffee beans with dry cocoa and some slight charred malts poking through. In many ways it smells like a very coffee forward mocha, with great nuances to the coffee smell. The smell is coffee heaven for sure. Comparable to Founder’s Breakfast Stout, only more coffee forward. On the tongue, the beer tastes sweet and then roasty bitter with slight savory hints of chocolate and meaty coffee. In flavors, the beer begins as sweet chocolate, almost moving into light dark fruit characters before it blossoms into roasted coffee and cocoa powder with light notes of charred malts. The flavors are superbly mellow and balanced, especially in comparison to the big nose, though still plenty large enough to please the palate. The finish is bitter black coffee with touches of light fruit and chocolate, which moves slowly into rich cocoa powder. The aftertaste is of light, generic dark fruit flavors with slight bitter coffee and a ghost of savory salt lingering on the tongue. In the mouth, the beer feels thick in body with a light velvety carbonation that helps the beer to slither across the palate. The mouth is left slightly wet with coffee’s bitter lingering feel. Overall, this is a phenomenal imperial stout with coffee and oatmeal. There are beautiful nuances in this beer and some beautiful balance between rather dominant flavors. This beer is in many ways comparable to Founder’s Breakfast Stout, and, in my current memory, it seems to have more balance and coffee richness than FBS. That being said, my bottle is a couple months old and might have mellowed from its original flavors. This beer is great, though, try it.