“Chocolate truffles, cocoa, espresso coffee, burnt currants, the sweetness of a sherry – all come to mind when enjoying an Imperial Stout. A rich porter of English origin brewed to withstand the long voyage from London to Czarist Russia. The classic “Winter Warmer”. Big, Strong, Malty Stout.”
Appearance: It hits the glass with an obsidian hue and three fingers of brown foam emerging on top. Decent retention and wavy lace work as we imbibe.
Aroma: Very complex. The years this was allowed to age has really rounded it out. Some initial tartness which is a little unwelcome but it softens in to an oaky, cherry-like character once it settles. Getting some charred malts, dark chocolate, vanilla, coffee, dark fruits and currants with an earthy truffle note coming through gently.
Flavour: It has that hint of barrel aged tartness on entry. Cherries, plums and vinegar explode before it mellows in to mild chocolate and coffee notes in the middle. Nice transition in to an earthy finish with that tart cherry sticking to the gums.
Mouthfeel: Oily, astringent and sticky in texture. Lifted booze (10% ABV) and mild-moderate co2.
Overall: A pretty damn fine impy stout if you ask us. Tonnes of cherry aroma and flavour but enough barrel and earthy malt to pull it back in to line. Not really what we expected but a good drop either way.