Bell’s Black Note Imperial Stout, the panacea of Michigan winters.

Oh shit, Black Note strip tease:

You dirty stouttease.

I'm no picture, dont leave me hanging.

It's like that scene where they open the Ark of the Covenant.

I can’t hype this beer anymore than the beer community already has so I will let the brewery tell you what this little asshole is:

“One of the most sought-after stouts in Bell’s history, Black Note Stout blends the complex aromatics of Expedition Stout with the velvety smooth texture of Double Cream Stout and ages the combination in freshly retired oak bourbon barrels for months. The resulting harmony of flavors captures the finest features of all three components: malty notes of dark chocolate, espresso & dried fruits, all buoyed by the warmth and fragrance of the bourbon barrel. Aimed squarely at the stout and bourbon aficionados, Black Note makes a grand statement about the art of the dark. ”

So yeah, I had to pull some tawdry Craigslist endeavors to land that tiny 8oz bottle. Dont ask.

A: Deep, jet black motor oil with low viscosity. This has some mild carbonation, but, I obtained this bottle from less than official means, so that carbonation might be lacking due to transit and/or transfer, notwithstanding the bubbles are a deep coffee brown with nice Yuban coating.


S: There are fantastic notes of coffee, light whiskey, bourbon, oak, huge chocolate, a mild vanilla that fades into toffee. Overall there is a mild heat that is wrapped in a great sweetness. The end of the nose is almost like a bourbon quad with deep pitted fruits and figs. The whole bouquet is one of the best that I have ever come across, no punchlines here.

T: This is a world-class stout. The heat is present and comes first with a warming dryness to the sweet zones, it subsides into a light hoppiness that is hand and hand with the coffee and sweet milk chocolate notes. It is incredibly pleasant throughout and doesn’t overpower on any one aspect and the coating is such that the taste lingers but doesn’t aggressively overstay its welcome. It’s really difficult to come across jokes to describe what is clearly such an incredible stout, BUT I WILL TRY.

It took a lot of activation energy to land this beer, but I feel like a noble gas having had it.

M: The mouthfeel is impressive and doesn’t wipe out your palate on either an alcohol basis or sweetening basis. The balance is like those dubious 13 year old chinese gymnasts. While the carbonation was lacking, it didn’t detract from the overall experience because the beer is simply meant to be sipped and savored so the minimal crackling on the lips is forgiveable, like Jehova’s Witness pamphlets during the last two minutes of your NFL game.

D: This is dangerously drinkable for 11.5% abv stout, and not just for my jaded ass palate. I am sure the average Tri-Delt could put away a few of these if cajoled with enough peer pressures (read: cocaine.) But seriously, getting murdered for just 8oz is particularly cruel when the end product is not a let down. The whole beer is a libation that lives and dies in the winter realm, just warms me up and lights a fire in the hearth of my heart. It’s a little chocolate Lord Byron for me to caress and whisper pre-enlightenment phrases to. SHIT IS BOMB.

Is this stout dope all up in my domepiece? I am positive.

Narrative: To the rest of the world, Max Davidoff was a mild mannered high school chemist. Sure his Ford Focus was nothing to look at, and his wry stoiciometry humor was nothing to write home about, but his basement held wonders that would suspend all disbelief. After years and years of testing, he had finally identified what could only be identified as the Chocoromeda Strain in his tattered notebooks. The neighbors stared in disbelief as the hazmat crews cleared the home and brandished geiger counters with solemn reverence. It was simply not man’s place to tamper with the substrata of the chocolate world. The makeup of chocolate was too dear to be trifled with, but Mr. Davidoff would not listen. The chocolate detonation took place at 11:51 p.m. on Wednesday April 24, 2010. The neighbors ran from their KB track homes to find a murky current of liquid mahogany bubbling from the foundation of the home. The air was redolent of chocolate not unlike a single 42 year old secretary’s home while watching the latest Kutcher offering. The chocomatrix had torn Mr. Davidoff’s frame limb from limb, but leaving him in conscious control of the deep heat and bubbly stratum. A series of unsolved bank robberies evidenced that the perpetrator clearly liked chocolate, but would the local police every believe that the robber HIMSELF WAS CHOCOLATE. “Say cheese and die motherfucker,” Mr. Davidoff quipped a dusty R.L. Stein reference just before he claimed his final victim, the school superintendent. Those new microscopes were pretty fucking important and summarily denied. But revenge is a dish best served like chocolate fondue.

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