Thanks to Adam Slaker and Jeremy Hoffman for bringing this beer, as well as five others, back from their trip to Maine earlier this summer. I finally got around to reviewing it on Saturday evening after a very eventful MUGZ meeting at the Scharr's house for the educational edition "How do YOU brew." I was in awe at their absurd collection of rare beers and SABCO brewing system - the same system Sam Calgione started Dogfish Head with!
Appearance: The pour revealed a very dark, yet surprisingly clear stream with a rich rubied hue. In the glass, clarity was negligible as it only took on a very dark brown/black color with a bit of transparent red/brown around the edges. Head was about a 1/4" in stature at the pour, but quickly retracted into a thin densely foamed beige ring around the inner perimeter of the glass.
Aroma: Robust chocolate with a subtle tint of roasted malt at the base. Predominantly a sweet dark chocolate malt backbone. A bit of pumpernickel breadiness as well as a oaky undertone may be drawn from the scent.
Taste: The forefront of this beer is impressively reminiscent of a 60% dark chocolate bar. Very rich in flavor. The midtaste doesn't reveal much of a change. The finish, however is alleviated with a bittersweet roastiness, that's accompanied with a neutral hop. If one is to get anything else out of the beer, it would more than likely be at the finish as it certainly leaves the palate wondering. Aftertaste is more of a brownie taste with a bit of added sugar for a toasted sweetness.
Mouthfeel: Carbonation seemed not to really fit in with the beer, as it seemed far too bubbly for such a stout. What could have been creamy ans smooth was left foamy and biting. Nevertheless as the body was polished into a lighter texture, it still made for a characteristically dryer feel.
Overall Impression: Certainly a fantastic stout. The sweetness and rich chocolate flavor was as basic as it gets, yet enough to leave the designated drinker in a devouring mood. I wasn't a fan of the carbonation, but that was hardly an issue over the other sensual perceptions