This is the second beer we’ve reviewed from Samuel Adam’s Imperial series (the third if you count their Hallertau Imperial Pilsner), and we’ll be reviewing their Imperial White before too long.  What can you say, Samuel Adams almost always makes quality stuff.  This beer is no different; here is my review.

Samuel Adam’s Imperial Stout looked like black oil from a car’s drain-pan.  On top of the body was a very nice brown, creamy, and stable head.

Upon putting my nose to the beer, I was a bit surprised.  I’m usually a little surprised when something from Samuel Adams that is called “Imperial” doesn’t have noticeable hop qualities.  I’m not saying this is bad, just surprising.  (Perhaps these are just my Imperial Stout expectations.)  The Imperial did not disappoint on the other stout qualities.  There was plenty of chocolate, coffee, and deep roasted grain aromas to be taken in. An alcohol aroma was also noticeable.

When I drank this beer, it was very dark and roasty in approach.  Again, the 9.2% alcohol certainly popped through.  The coffee and chocolate tones that I noted in the nose were in abundance.

Overall, the beer was still pretty good, but I found myself a little disappointed.  I guess I was just expecting more.  For me, I like an Imperial Stout with a little acid bite.  Now if you want a smooth-drinking Imperial Stout, then you might really enjoy this beer.  Don’t misunderstand what I’m saying; this beer is still very good, even among Stouts.  But from Samuel Adam’s more extreme beers like Triple Bock and Utopias, I expected more boldness.  You never can tell.

Mike’s Rating:

Overall Satisfaction: ★★★¾☆ 

Among other Imperial Stouts: ★★★½☆ 

Among other Stouts ★★★¼☆