This beer pours extremely smoothly to a dark, seemingly opaque black body that is actually dark ruby red. The body is rather tepid with little to no carbonation noticeable and only a small soapy light brown head. There isn’t much chocolate noticeable in the nose, but there is an aroma of roasted malts that is typical of high-end stouts.
Often the first thing one notices about a chocolate beer is, not surprisingly, the chocolate flavor. However, with Fort Collins Chocolate Stout, the first thing one notes is an intense hoppy composition. If you are a fan of hoppy beers such as India Pale Ales, this can be pleasantly surprising. This beer has a strong hop bite and a bitterness to match.
The chocolate is much more noticeable in the finish than in the initial approach. Many chocolate beers tend to have chalky character reminiscent of confectioner’s sugar, but Fort Collins has a delicious palate of sweet dark chocolate without any sugary or gimmicky taste. The subtle choco- late taste complements the hop character well, making this a very robust beer. Dark roasted malts are also evident and balance the beer perfectly.
For such a hoppy brew, Fort Collins Chocolate Stout is ridiculously smooth. It has a gentle mouthfeel that’s as soft as a pillow, and it finishes just as comfortably. This probably is due to the well-balanced palate and the surprisingly thin body. The only caveat is that it leaves a dry aftertaste, which is a small price to pay for an otherwise outstanding performer.
At only 5.3% ABV, Fort Collins Chocolate Stout isn’t close to being an Imperial beer. It’s probably a little heavy in calories and carbs, though. From our experience, it certainly doesn’t feel like a hefty beer and one could go through many bottles of it quickly and easily.” –Handbook of Porters & Stouts