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Beer – #297 – Sierra Nevada – Narwhal Imperial Stout

I seem to be stuck in a groove, The Imperial Stout.  I continue with this a Sierra Nevada Narwhal Imperial Stout.

Single bottle of a 12 fl Oz, (355ml)  10.2% ABV, beer, being 306 calories, and 2.86 standard drink units. Also 60 IBU.

Sierra Nevada - Narwhal Imperial StoutNarwhal Imperial Stout is the latest beer in Sierra Nevada’s High Altitude Series. This malt-forward monster is bold – with notes of baker’s cocoa, molasses, and dark roasted coffee. This massive imperial stout is incredibly complex, rich, and intense and will develop in the bottle for years to come.

Hops:  Bittering:- Magnum, Finishing:- Challenger
Malts: Two Row Pale, Chocolate, Honey, Carafa, Roasted Barley

Lovely chocolate aroma on opening,  Dark pour but without a head, breaking a fine run. Aroma is still coffee/chocolate and some rich fruits.

Really big mouthfeel with this, really big. And the bitterness is cranked up and front and centre. There is a smooth and mellow middle of the malts and a fruity finish.

Sierra Nevada - Narwhal Imperial Stout1This has a very dry and harsh finish.  I got up to get some cheese and crackers at this point .

The gap in time has allowed this to warm a little in the glass and release a lot more of the roastedness that contained making this a whole new, and quite pleasant experience.

The pdubyah-o-meter rates this as a safe 8, very good beer.  I was left, overall, thinking that this was just a touch too bitter in the front, and it’s lack of a head was dissaponting. As it warms more it releases more of the roasted malts, giving you more of the chocolate, but also then finally some earthiness that contributes to the dry finish.

I didn’t not like it, I wouldn’t be giving you a virtual high five over this, but if you were drinking it I’d tip my glass to you as a good choice .

Music has been ” Daughter


Imperial stouts are usually extremely dark brown to black in color with flavors that are intensely malty, deeply roasted and sometimes with accents of dark fruit (raisin, fig) or milk sourness. The bitterness is typically medium and often the low sie of that. Imperial stouts are strong and often exceed 8% by volume.

 Specialty Malt

Malted barley generally falls into two camps: base malt and specialty malt. Base malt is highly modified malt that is responsible for producing the bulk of the fermentable sugars in the beer. Specialty malt is malt added for its flavor, color or effect on the body and mouthfeel of the finished beer. Specialty malts are typically produced by kilning and/or roasting barley. Caramel malt is made by placing germinated barley with a high moisture content directly into a roaster. The resulting malt produces unfermentable sugars during the mashing process, adding sweetness and body to finished beer. Roasted malt is base malt that has been placed in a roaster similar to a coffee roaster to produce deeper, darker, baker’s cocoa and espresso flavors like those common in a porter or a stout.

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4 comments on “Beer – #297 – Sierra Nevada – Narwhal Imperial Stout

  1. kingmidget
    February 10, 2014

    Beautiful song. Now I have another group to check out on Spotify.


    • Pdubyah
      February 10, 2014

      I love Spotify!


      • kingmidget
        February 10, 2014

        It’s the greatest invention since the wheel.


      • Pdubyah
        February 10, 2014

        I’m pleased you didn’t say “since sliced bread”, because it begs the question what was the best thing before


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