Appearance: Pitch black with a short brown head that gradually recedes. We’re seeing a lovely cascading lace as it subsides.
Aroma: Smells amazing. So big and rambunctious yet so sweet and heavenly. We get the aggressive charred malts, molasses, espresso coffee, dark chocolate and ash with the olfactory-hugging maple, honey, brown sugar and caramel woven through. The barrels then add another layer of what appears to be mild bourbon and French vanillin oak. Love!
Flavour: The best thing – it all translates on to the palate. Rich molasses, leather and dark chocolate lay down for a bittersweet middle of coffee, roasty malts and treacle. Maple, honey and toffee then finish it off with a lingering warmth and subtle hints of ash and charred malt which really draw out.
Mouthfeel: Not as dense and chewy as we had anticipated. There’s still a pretty lively CO2 and nice oiliness on the lips. Medium-full body with the 11% ABV well hidden.
Overall: The Eclipse range of stouts would have to be one of the best series in the world. Our only criticism would be that the wax colour guideline and the dodgy abbreviations on the bottle make it hard to know which one you actually have! We’re pretty sure this is the maple coffee and if it is it’s bloody superb!