Here’s what they say:
Brewed specially for owner Doug Booth’s 40th birthday, this Imperial Schwarzbier has twice the malt and hops of our Black Noddy Lager, creating a deep black color, rich, nutty malt flavors and a smooth hop bite. A symphony of balanced intensity!
Here’s what I say…
This beer pours from the can into a pint glass extremely thick. Pours to a two finger thick head that’s a light coffee with cream color. The beer looks like a very dark ruby brown around the edges of the glass. Other than the edges, it looks like motor oil.
This has a great smoky, malty nose with coffee and caramel notes. There are also slightly noticeable floral hop notes hiding in there as well. As it warms, faint hints of raisin are also detected.
This comes across far hoppier than the nose lets on. There are powdery and dry qualities to this full bodied beer. Coffee seems to be the most pronounced flavor I noticed. There is a slight caramel sweetness hiding there beneath the dry flowery hoppiness. It’s more effervescent than I think I was expecting, but the finish is quite dry and leaves your palate ready for another go at this beer. The fact that it’s 10.5% ABV is easily missed when first drinking this beer, as the higher ABV is hidden well. You do notice it after finishing the entire can though!
I really didn’t know what I thought about this beer at first. My preference is for beers ranging from well balanced to the malty side of things, so the pronounced hoppiness gave me pause at first. But this is an interesting beer, definitely worth trying out. I don’t know that it is as balanced as it could be.
Recommended: I’d encourage fans of hoppier brews to give this a shot and savor it slowly, letting it warm considerably to fully experience it.
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