Bitches Brew

American Imperial Stout Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

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Bitches Brew, an American Imperial Stout by Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

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Bitches Brew is an American Imperial Stout brewed by Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, and for the purposes of this craft beer review, the ale was served in a snifter from a bottle.

Appearance

The stout pours an opaque black and is topped by a finger-thick cap of dense mocha-colored foam that dissipates rapidly. The reduction doesn’t leave behind any lace or residue but streaks briefly appear during consumption. A thin collar rounds the glass.

Aroma

The aroma is sweet and roasty with a scent of chocolate, licorice, and char.

Flavor

The palate begins with a neutral blend of bready malt and a light coffee roast. The finish is spiked with bitter wood that quickly becomes tangy when sweetly mixed with honey, dark fruit, and chocolate.

Mouthfeel

Its feel is smooth with a medium-full body and moderate carbonation. Slightly dry with a tannic bitterness.

Overall

Looks and smells like a stout, but otherwise, Bitches Brew is a different take on the style. The roast character is less pronounced and it’s that bright, tangy blend of earth and sweet that drives the palate. Tastes more like a good cola. A high ABV is masked quite well. Sits nicely on the tongue but its acidity is also unique. This might not be anyone’s go-to stout but it does make for an interesting change of pace.

Recommended Pairings

Dogfish Head recommends the following food pairings with their Bitches Brew: creamy blue cheese, chili, and spicy curry chicken.

A Tribute to Miles Davis

Bitches Brew was crafted in honor of legendary jazz musician, Miles Davis. The brew is comprised of three parts stout and one part Tej, a honey mead from Africa. The honey brew uses gesho root for bitterness and adds a unique character to this Imperial Stout. Watch the video below from Dogfish Head founder Sam Calagione as he talks about the inspiration and brewing process behind this Imperial Stout.

Have You Tried Bitches Brew?

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About the American Imperial Stout

Rich, dark, and complex, the American Imperial Stout has a strength similar to that of an American Barleywine. Its bitterness typically runs high from hops, roast, or booze, and it should have a silky, luscious feel. The style originated in the Russian Imperial Court, became popular in England, and then all but disappeared. The modern craft brewing renaissance resurrected the style in America and in England.