Posted 4 years ago | Beer Reviews

Perennial Artisan Ales Sump

Perennial Artisan Ales Sump photo

I was lucky enough this past Winter to encounter two of the best stouts I’ve ever run across. The first was the stellar Avery Uncle Jacob’s Stout. The other is Sump, a 10.5% ABV imperial stout packed with a rich and robust coffee character, courtesy St. Louis’ Sump Coffee.

A few other Perennial beers have passed my way in the last year or so, but none have captured my attention like this big stout. Part of that is obviously my preternatural leanings toward stouts, but mostly it’s due to the fact that Sump is simply just an outstanding beer. The coffee character reminds me a good bit of the presence that Nøgne Ø’s Dark Horizon brings to the coffee stout table, yet with a smoother, more approachable nature.

Perennial Artisan Ales Sump

Appearance

As you can see by the photos above, the head on this beer is rather unstable with plenty of large bubbles dropping rather quickly atop the viscous, black fluid.

Aroma

Loads of coffee, a roasty char, burnt coffee, a hint of vanilla and cocoa all combine for a nose that is quite impressive.

Taste

This is a heck of a robust imperial stout. Espresso, chocolate, burnt coffee, a dark roast bitterness and moderate sweetness come together seamlessly. Sump is full-bodied with a viscous mouthfeel that carries the decadent and layered flavors to a warming and comforting finish. A light lactose-like character helps temper the roast a touch, making the beer a treat to enjoy.

Overall

I can’t speak highly enough of this beer. It’s just darn impressive. Drinkable, rich, robust, smooth — everything you’d want in a big beer of this style. It is by far and away the best beer from Perennial Ales that I’ve had so far and one that I cannot wait to cross paths with again.

Rating: 4.5/5

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