Home > Imperial Stout, Stout > The Kernel Imperial Brown Stout London 1856

The Kernel Imperial Brown Stout London 1856

Rating: 4.2

This one is a beer that I picked up a couple of months ago and opted to hold off trying given it was such a strong offering and one that I felt would age well, a bit of a rarity for a Kernel beer that I’ve picked up with the majority of the seventeen that I’ve tried of theirs so far being either pale ales or American style IPA’s. This one is my first imperial stout from the London brewery and only my second dark beer (excluding black IPA’s) after their excellent Export India Porter that I tried in September of last year and really enjoyed. Another rotating offering from the brewery, this one is available with a varying alcohol content but the bottle I tried came in at 10.2% which seems to be one of the stronger ones. I’m struggling to think of a bad beer that I’ve had from The Kernel and this one was no exception when I tried it a couple of days ago.

The Kernel Imperial Brown Stout London 1856

Appearance (4/5): This one is pitch black in colour and topped with a thin, half centimetre tall head that’s tan brown in colour and fades quite quickly to leave a thin lacing around the edge of the glass as well as the odd patch in the centre.
Aroma (8/10): This one is a really strong beer on the nose with tonnes of dark chocolate and roasted malts opening things up alongside some background sugars and touches of coffee. There was the odd hint of lactose and a little vanilla as well but the chocolates definitely dominated. Towards the end there was a touch of oak and overall the beer was quite rich but balance on the nose was quite a good one.
Taste (9/10): The taste kicks off with strong roasted malts and a lot of oak flavours backed up with some vanilla and sweetness straight off the bat. There was a burnt sugar taste coupled with rich cocoa and a little coffee thrown in for good measure. There was quite a kick to the beer but that was expected given the strength of this one and I started to detect some caramel and toasted flavours towards the end that were quite enjoyable.
Palate (4/5): Smooth and full-bodied with a very rich feel and quite a lot of sweetness off the back of the sugars that were present throughout this one. There was a nice warming feel that was boozy as well thanks to the strong alcohol content and some nice spices showed themselves towards the end too.

Overall (18/20): This one was yet another excellent offering from The Kernel, going down just as well as some of the excellent IPA’s and pale ales I’ve tried from them over the years. It’s not often I try a dark beer from them but this one was exceptional with plenty of dark chocolate flavours and a nice, strong kick from the alcohol coming through alongside nice coffee flavours and some sweetness. Despite the huge abv. it wasn’t a particularly difficult beer to drink and it went down relatively easily when the 10.2% was taken into consideration; great stuff and exactly what I was expecting from this one.

Brewed In: London, England
Brewery: The Kernel Brewery
First Brewed: 2011
Type: Russian Imperial Stout
Abv: 10.2%
Serving: Bottle (500ml)
Purchased: Good Spirits Co. (Glasgow)
Price: £4.80


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