Black Belle Imperial Stout – Blackstone Brewing Company
Gifted by Nick M. and poured into globe glasses.
This imperial stout “infused with cacao nibs and aged in bourbon barrels” was brewed by Nashville, Tennessee-based Blackstone, and it pours a thick, oily black with a sliver of a brown head. Black Belle has an exceptionally rich and dessert-like nose of dark chocolate-covered coffee beans, toasted marshmallow, cola, and some booze. The alcohol is even more upfront on the first swallow, but the magic of Black Belle is that it expertly manages to offer all of the flavors of hard alcohol (i.e., chocolate and coffee take more of a supporting role to vanilla and toast) without any discomforting throat burn.