May 15, 2007

Weyerbacher Old Heathen Imperial Stout

What? Oh, like you really thought I’d make it through the first few months of Spring on only lighter bodied beers more appropriate for the season. We all know that was never going to happen.

My affinity (affliction) for stouts is just too strong to go longer than a month without a glass of black gold. I’ve been enjoying my run of more traditional Spring/Summer beers, but the Weyerbacher Old Heathen is just what I needed. I just couldn’t let it sit in the fridge any longer.

Beer Label: Weyerbacher Old Heathen Imperial Stout


Mmmmmm… black beer. This one pours darker than the night. The thick dark toffee colored head faded quickly to pretty much nothing. I will attribute that to the higher alcohol content (8% ABV).


After smelling nothing but super hopped up, spicy pilsners and ales, the smell of this beer was beyond refreshing. The aroma is earthy and rich with a full espresso/coffee nose. There’s a subtle sweetness as well.


This is a tasty beer. The earthiness and richness of the coffee and chocolate are present, as is a nice toffee undertone. It’s not overly sweet and has that characteristic coffee bitterness in the finish. The flavors are well balanced, leaving it smooth as silk.


I’d been itching for a big beer for the past couple of months. This one hit the spot. As far as Russian Imperial Stouts go, it won’t knock off the Brooklyn or North Coast products from their high vantage point on my favorites list, but it is a great example of the style. With the higher ABV level, there isn’t really a noticeable alcohol heat in the nose or taste. It’s well masked by the earthy nature of the beer.

Rating: 4/5