Style: American Double/Imperial Stout
Malt: Pils, Oat, Smoked, CaraMunich, Brown, Pale chocolate, Chocolate, roasted barley, flaked oats
Hops: Centennial, Cascade
Adjunct: Gourmet Coffee
Brewer’s Note: “An oatmeal stout with 25.0% oat-based ingredients and a nice touch of gourmet coffee. A beer that goes extremely well with breakfast.”
The beer’s label is very Northern European in look, which is fine by me. The well-defined lines of the label help to pop out at the eye and all of the graphics looks interesting and great. I love the coffee press and how the label slips the bottle size in by putting it on the bottom of the press. All the fonts, while simple, are interesting, eye catching, and meld perfectly into the label. The coloring of the label is also funky and cool, though a little faded and drab it works with the label. This label is worthy of your shelf or scrapbook, it is catching of the eye.
The beer pours like pitch black oil. Thick and sludge-like, this beer looks like the dregs of French press coffee. It pours with a small, dark khaki/light brown head of bubbles that fizzles away to leave a scrim moving up the sides of the glass. The body is too dark to see through, and the head leaves no lacing on the glass. On the nose, the beer smells of middling roast malt and coffee with a slight vegetal/dark fruit smell that seems to be coming from the coffee. Grainy oats also bristle over the nose like hot oatmeal and blend beautifully with the roast coffee. I was a little concerned when I first sniffed this beer, but as it sits in my snifter its scent exponentially rises in enticement. On the tongue, the beer tastes of big coffee bitter roast with a light sweet hint from the malt and coffee beans and a slight bite of acidity. In flavor, the beer begins as sweet dark fruits which immediately explodes in roasted coffee with a nice bitter bite that dries the beer out and brings layer upon layer of coffee flavors to the tongue, running from dark fruits, to chocolate, to roasted malts. This beer’s flavor profile is perfect for the morning. In the mouth, the beer is creamy and medium in body, which is surprisingly light for a stout of this size but must be due to the added coffee. The beer’s carbonation is light, and just gives a faint prick to the tongue, allowing the coffee and malt flavors to dominate the mouth. The mouth is left bitter dry with a bit of stickiness and a decent amount of acid neutralizing saliva running through the mouth. Overall, this is a beautiful stout that really hits the coffee lovers sweet spot. The coffee flavors are brilliantly represented in this beer. Unlike Founder’s Breakfast Stout, this beer showcases the coffee as the center of your palate, instead FBS’s beautiful balance, but this beer’s coffee is perfect on the tongue. I would love to knock this beer back in the morning, as it has the perfect amount of coffee roast flavoring to start the morning. This beer is great, do yourself a favor and try it.