Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Avery Mephistopheles Stout

Today Beer! reviews a demonically good beer from Colorado's Avery Brewing, the Mephistopheles Stout.

Brewery: Avery Brewing
Location: Boulder, CO
Style: Stout
Brewery Website
Rating: A

Today's tasting is a big, bad boy from Avery - their Mephistopheles Stout. The bottle I am sampling is from batch 5, dated 12/09 and weighing in at a gigantic 16.83% ABV. Mephistopheles is an opaque ebony color and pours with a slow-rising dark brown head that fades to a clumpy foam. The nose detects complex notes including wine, yeast, honey, raisins and wheat toast.

On the palate the Mephistopheles is off-dry, despite its somewhat syrupy mouthfeel. There is a malt note of very dark toasted rye bread and an overall heavy burnt toast characteristic. Big beer notes of honey, raisins and wine are here. There is also some espresso and a piney bitter hops note. The Avery Mephistopheles Stout has a heavy body to go with the light, clingy syrup sensation. There is also some serious warming from the potent alcohol level. The finish has lingering dark toast with some raisins and black coffee in the background.

The Mephistopheles is simply a beast. This is a complex, rich and potent stout that is quite unique. The only thing I'd change is that this is a little dryer than I'd like, but not by much. The Avery Mephistopheles Stout reminds me a lot of the Thomas Hardy's Ale. I plan on cellaring a few of these as this should only improve with age.

This was also a fantastic pairing with the Waialua Estate dark chocolate bar.

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