Black is Beautiful
Brewery: Southern Heights Brewing Co
Style: Spice Herb Vegetable Beer (Imperial Stout base 30A)
Package: 16oz Can
Purchased: Beer to go!
Packaged Date: July 23, 2020
Consumed Date: September 24, 2020
Details From the Brewer
Our version of this Russian Imperial Stout was brewed with 4lbs of Vanilla Beans in the boil for a deep vanilla flavor. We also added 5lbs of organic Dominican Republic cocoa nibs from the good folks @srslychocolate and Organic Maple Syrup to tie it all together beautifully.
Aroma – 10/12
High levels of maple syrup jump out of the glass first. This is joined by a medium high vanilla aroma with a similar intensity dark chocolate note. The combination creates a brownie-like character. More subtle roast and ash notes. Moderate sweetness with some detectable alcohol. Lower notes red apple and fig esters.
Appearance – 3/3
Pours a deep black liquid, absorbing any light. A light brown head forms at two fingers height made up of fine and small bubbles. Good retention, fading to half a finger and eventually maintaining a ring.
Flavor – 16/20
A medium-high blend of maple, vanilla wash over the tongue. Cocoa quickly joins with moderate bitterness. Malt notes of coffee, roast, grainy and caramel. A moderate sweetness carries with it some dark fruit esters. These flavors slowly fade to a dry finish, leaving a subtle flavor of adjuncts with slight roast.
Mouthfeel – 4/5
Medium-full bodied at the start of the taste, fading a bit towards the end. The finish is soft with no astringency. Moderate carbonation. Some alcohol warmth in the throat.
Overall Impression – 8/10
The expression of cocoa, maple, and vanilla are really cohesive. They blend well together, invocative of a desert, without pastry sweetness. The base stout still comes through, but does take a backseat to the adjuncts. I’d prefer it to come through a bit more in the balance. The flavors come across as genuine and not like extract.
Rating – 41/50
One of my personal favorite stouts of the series I’ve tried. The combination of vanilla with cocoa nibs leads to an authentic chocolatey taste that really works well. I really enjoy the dryness on the finish since adjunct stouts have been trending so much sweeter.