Total Score: 92.5
Today’s beer is Siberian Night, a Russian Imperial Stout that comes from another local brewery, Thirsty Dog Brewing Company in Akron, Ohio. In keeping with the name and purpose of this site I try to provide some information about the brewery and beer, but in this case I can’t find much. Their website is pretty rag-tag, and they don’t even have an entry in Wikipedia. I honestly thought they were a bit more well-known than this, but perhaps that’s just because they’re relatively local. All I can really unearth is that Siberian Night has won a GABF Gold Medal (2005) and two GABF Bronze Medals (2003 and 2006), so my hopes are high.
Poured from a 12 oz bottle into what else but my Thirsty Dog glass. Black in the purest way. Totally opaque, not even a shred of light around the edges. Small, dense, creamy dark beige head. Lacing is spotty and unremarkable. Smell is big on the dark chocolate, with moderate roasted coffee notes and mild citrusy hop smell. Good smell overall, but lacking the star-power of others I’ve had. Big, syrupy-sweet, rich, chocolatey taste up front and in your face. This is followed by a somewhat brief but intense flash of delicious citric hops before the bitter roasted coffee plows through. Hugely malty but also satisfyingly hoppy. Body is full as can be, almost chewable. Carbonation is mild which works well in this one. Aftertaste is very bitter and moderately dry. Noticeable warmth in the stomach…not surprising for a 9.7% ABV beer.
I think this beer would be incredible paired with a super-rich dessert, maybe something like a triple-chocolate cake. I actually had one of these by itself after Thanksgiving dinner, and while I have no idea how it fit in my stomach on top of all the food, it was the perfect dessert even by itself.
Between this and Old Rasputin, I’m finding myself growing rather fond of Russian Imperial Stouts (still not quite as much as IPAs though). This beer is very good. Hits every aspect of the palate and fills both the mouth and stomach. Certainly recommended.
Look: 9/10 Smell: 8.5/10 Taste: 9.5/10 All-Around: 9.5/10