Tom: Three Yeti brews down, one to go on my quest to sample all of Great Divide’s Imperial Stout variations. I was super excited to open the gold leaf wrapped cap and pour this viscous, obsidian colored brew into my snifter. Having just had Goose Island BCS Coffee I was interested to see how the two would compare.
Similar in appearance to the first two Yeti(s) I’ll let the picture speak for itself. There were some legs to it upon giving a gentle swirling.
The smell is not as intense when cold, but wow, when it reaches close to room temp I could not get my nose out of the snifter. Smooth with hints of black licorice, [dark] chocolate, and of course rich coffee. The oak notes of toffee and vanilla blend well with the coffee (which is not overpowering). There is a pinch of hops that wafts up in a piney expression. There is some abv heat, but not distracting. The coffee acts as the glue pulling the burnt grain and oak notes together wonderfully. And, since it is aged on oak chips and not in bourbon barrels there is not that shocking alcohol aroma as found in BCS Coffee.
Thick layers of chocolate, roasted/toasted and burnt malts and coffee rolled over my tongue. It was slick, oily, and bold reminding me of the French press coffee my roommate got me into. As stated before, the coffee blend is a perfect compliment and rather light…almost similar to a Central American grown bean (thank you to I Have a Bean for the education). Some fruit notes find the side of my palate such as dates and figs. The hopping is high and well done making for a great mixture of piney resins that hide behind the malt and coffee. The mouthfeel almost felt like an oatmeal stout and the finish was not as astringent as the original Yeti.
The aftertaste is mellow, yet fitting for an Imperial Stout and the oak rounds out the sharper corners of the various ingredients. Truly a breakfast beer I might recommend giving the coffee maker a rest some Saturday morning. I could really see this great with eggs and bacon…or as Great Divide recommends a breakfast burrito. Grade: A