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Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout - North Coast Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Old Rasputin Russian Imperial StoutOld Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.

3,540 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 3,540
Hads: 11,427
Avg: 4.27
pDev: 18.5%
Wants: 514
Gots: 2,453 | FT: 55
Brewed by:
North Coast Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 01-18-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (29) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout Alström Bros
Reviews: 3,540 | Hads: 11,427
Photo of Gtreid
3.86/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured the 12 oz. bottle into a pub glass.

A: Black with almost two fingers of milk chocolate colored head. Thin stickey lacing lines the glass.

A: Chocolate, roasted coffee malts, caramel, and espresso. Earthy hops balance the nose nicely.

T: The coffee and chocolate stand out in the begining, the molasses and caramel show up in the middle, and the earthy hops and alcohol give the beer a very nice bitter, warming finish.

M&D: The mouthfeel is outstanding. Creamy and rich, with a perfect amount of carbonation. This is a very good RIS. 9% ABV is just right. Wouldn't session this, but sipping on a couple of these to end a night is just what the doctor ordered. Skal.

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Photo of cyraxx
3.86/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pitch black with a light brown creamy head that is very inviting. I have to be a little lenient on the aroma because some is lost when a beer is served via nitrogen. All I can discern is roasted malts with a slight licorice edge. The flavor is somewhat muted with burnt malt, chocolate, and a slight metallic flavor. The nitrogen thins out what would normally be a substantial body. I usually feel that what is lost in putting a beer on nitro is made up for with the creaminess that is imparted. In the case of Old Rasputin, I really would stick to drinking it with normal CO2. While tasty, not as good as the original.

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Photo of Patrick999
3.86/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I always see this on the supermarket shelves, a BA Top 100 beer, but never pick it up. This time, I picked it up. Here we go:

This one is going into the snifter. Pours a suitably opaque black/brown, with a very nice cap of espresso crema-like foam.

Aromatics are a bit muted, consisting mostly of caramel macchiato and light carob.

Taste is mostly roasted coffee with some earthy hop bitterness. Sweet, but dried out pretty well by the roastiness.

Feel is creamy, but not poetically so.

Solid imperial stout, but I'm going out on a limb to say it's a bit overrated, especially given this site's adoration for the RIS style.

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Photo of Eriktheipaman
3.86/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a black with brown highlights. Amazing khaki head that stays for much longer than expected.

The smell isn't what was expected. I pick up a slight bit of alcohol but mostly hops. A roasty citrus.

The taste is also very hop forward. As well as most of the roast leaning towards the bitter side of things. The alcohol comes through much more than I remember.

The body is on the lighter side and has a semi-dry finish.

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Photo of crazybrody06
3.86/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz bottle that I let sit on the counter for about 30 minutes, into a mug.

Poured a very dark black color, no light coming through this baby. BIG head took a few minutes to get all the enitre bottle into the glass. The head was the color of chocolate milk. Im still looking at the lace the head left even though the glass is almost empty.

The smell was a mix of sweet chocolate and coffee, dirt (not really as bad as it sounds)

Taste was of dark chocolates, coffee, chalk, some hints of fruits.

This is not really my favorite style of beer so I couldnt drink more then one, but was impressed that I actually finished the entire bottle in about 20 minutes.

Mouthfeel was full and nice without carbonation.

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Photo of jmacdaddy2008
3.86/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I bought a single of this beer earlier tonight. This was one of the first beers for me when I converted from cheap beer.

Color- dark brown

Head-thick,tan two finger foam/ the residue left on side of glass suggests a thicker consistency

Aroma-a little floral pretty complex almost a woodsy smell

Taste-oaky or bourbon flavor/some hints of coffee heavy bitterness in the end and alcohol taste was present.

After trying many other russian imperial stouts I would have to say this one is worthy of an occassional buy, but doesn't stand out among the elites.

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Photo of alex_hart
3.86/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

appearance: black black black with a tannish, brown half finger head that dissipates quickly. Beautiful, thick lacing throughout the duration of the glass.

Smell: Burnt coffee, dark cocoa, sweet malt, and a hint of toffee.

Taste: Follows the nose almost to a T. Burnt coffee right off the bat, then the cocoa comes in along with the sweet malt. Slight bitterness on the tip of the tongue, but not overbearing at all. Pretty good.

Mouthfeel: Medium to heavy. slight carbonation twinge on the tongue. Leaves a bit of slick residue on the finish.

Overall: This is a pretty good RIS. There is a lot of hype about this one, but it isn't the best thing I have ever had. It is inexpensive (under $8 for a 4 pack) so it is worth the try. Everyone's palate is different! cheers!

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Photo of Glibber
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours black coffee with a dark foam that shrinks down to a small surface cover. Faint smell, coffee, sherry, little burn in the belly. Not to much sweetness, but not too bitter. Very mellow for the alcohol content. Nice sipping beer. My friends really liked it as well.

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Photo of CaskofFlyingDog
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: black with red hues peaking out the bottom and a wimpish head

Smell: Dark Chocolate Ice Cream with a sour note

Taste Dark Chocolate and lots of it.There's probably some spice in there but i can't detect it.

Mouthfeel: thick with some graininess and a some alchohol

Drinkability: I could have about two then my stool would turn completely black.

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Photo of BigTuna
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Old Rasputin pours incredibly dark, almost in an unappealing fashion. You couldn't look through this beer if you had x-ray vision. Appearance hardly ever affects my rating, but this looked like earthworm mud. The smell is also a bit underwhelming. Dark chocolate with a hint of raisin, but it doesn't offer up the complexity of smells I've had from other exceptional RIS. The taste makes up for the smell though. I got waves of dark chocolate and coffee with a bitter (almost hoppy?) finish. Delicious.

Overall, a GREAT beer but I was just slightly underwhelmed.

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Photo of doopiedoopiedoo
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked this one up during my USA trip.

Poured into a pint glass.

Comes out black, very black. Carbonation is very present. A nice two finger mocha head leaving a some lacing as the head reduces to a half finger.

Smells of dark roasted malts and chocolate. I notice a lot of hop and that gets me excited for I love hoppy stouts.

So the flavor do deliver the hop I wanted but it's lacking in some other departements. It doesn't quite give you that in your face I'm a stout feel. Sure there is some roasted malts and there is some chocolate present but it's to crisp and clean to be a real imperial stout.

It's medium bodied and extremely smooth. A little more carbonation than I'd like in my stouts.

I really enjoyed this beer. I drank one and poured me another one right after so it has to be a good beer one way or the other. I loved the hoppiness that comes with it. The rest of the flavors are a bit to clean and sterile for my likings. I guess I just like my Imperial Stouts to be dirty!

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Photo of crossovert
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. No apparent bottled on date.

Pours into my snifter a pitch black. It has a shiny, foamy tan head that sticks for a while and leaves some lacing.

The nose is filled with thick dark malt flavors such as cocoa, coffee, and roasted malt. There is also subtle fruit and caramel. It is a clean, basic RIS scent.

The taste follows, lots of cocoa and coffee. The alcohol is more pronounced on the palate than it is in the nose. It is just quintessential ris flavors. It isn't overly exciting but it is authentic and well crafted.

This is a damn good RIS though not my favorite.

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Photo of ramseye4
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark black with a smallish light brown head. Smells of very dark roasts, a little bit of coffee, spices and nuts. Taste is of chocolate, delicious dark burnt malts and a bit bitter in the aftertaste. The taste is not as complex as some other stouts I have had, but the simplicity works for it. Excellent carbonation and smooth drinkability.

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Photo of cichief
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

I bought a four-pack of this in a big wine mega-store in Maryland. I've had this beer before on the west coast, but it has been a while. The beer poured coffee black, with a light brown head about one-half inch thick. It smelled of coffee and chocolate. It tasted great, but had a little alcohol burn in the aftertaste. It was a little fizzy, but that was a minor problem. I would like to drink this more often.

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Photo of taylor714914
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Update 10/23/13

Put this puppy on nitro and be wowed! Sweet mercy!

I have been wanting to try this for a while, and while out and about I found a four pack for 9 bucks. HAD to pick it up and try it.

A - Dark brown, with a 2 finger head which subsides to just a surface skim. Laces the whole way down the glass. Tons of it.

S - Roasted goodness, coffee, alcohol, just a hint of a sweet smell.

T - Burnt malts, roasted coffee beans, alcohol, chocolate, bitterness.

M - Not as thick as I had hope. Somewhat thin for the style, with a moderate amount of carbonation.

D - An decent RIS, but there are many others I'd rather drink.

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Photo of travolta
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

App: As black as they come, ruby and black coffee around the edges of my glass will just barely peak through. Chocolate milk colored, frothy head. Nice retention.

Nose: Nice with upfront chocolate, but just a little. A bit of espresso beans.

Taste: Nicely roasted with an alcohol taste lingering. Very well carbonated for the style. Some very dark fruit, like blackberry, at the end, just before it almost all fades away.

Notes: A total classic. Very nice on it's own, but could beat up anything else you are eating/drinking.

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Photo of filabrazilia
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a "midnight without a moon" black with a gorgeous brown head that settles into excellent lacing. A very nice looking beer.

I am struck by how much chocolate exists in the nose. This is like opening a box of fine imported chocolates and allowing the smells to embrace you as you anticipate the first taste. Toffe and carmel are present as well.

The taste, unfortunately does not match the aroma and is nowhere near as complex or as smooth as I anticipated. It is a tad bitter--I suppose from the roasted malts. There were some pronounced alcohol flavors as well. While not bad, I'm a little disappointed with it.

This is a medium bodied beer that is mildly carbonated and pleasant on the palate.

This is not nearly as drinkable as I'd like it to be. I think I will let the remaining beers age for a while before I try it again. The taste just didn't quite match the smell or the appearance. Hopefully time will give it some more character.

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Photo of kajerm
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Pours black, totally opaque with a thin, intriguingly asymmetric ring of tan foam; good lacing.

Huge coffee nose, with dark-roasted malt and a little bit of semisweet chocolate. Some yeasty/alcoholic spiciness.

Coffee is definitely evident from beginning to end, with some hops and even more black malt bitterness. There is a strong background flavor of dark chocolate. The alcohol is clearly evident, and that's not necessarily a bad thing.

The mouthfeel was initially disapointing; the palate was thin and overcarbonated, but it inexplicably settled down and turned into a proper imperial stout-- super creamy and chewy. Nice.

Drinkability is about what you'd expect for an imp, no surprises here.

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Photo of Matty1918
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to deepsouth for this sample.

Pours from a bottle into a chalice.

Pours a nice dark color....no light shining through this bad boy. Not much head maybe I poured it a little colder than it should of been. The thin head that is there is dark and creamy looking. Good amount of lacing.

Aroma is of slight coffee with a big chocolate back bone. Nice roasted malts come through in the end. You can smell the alcohol too.

That first sip and you can taste the alcohol. Once that settles down it's a strong toasted malt flavor that gives way to coffee. There's a hint of molases there for a second then it gets overtaken by the alcohol and roasted malts. This is a sipper for sure. The 9% ABV doesn't hide itself.

Mouthfeel is very nice, creamy with good carbonation.

Glad I got the chance to try this. The alcohol was a little bit overpowering as it needed more of a balance. I'd buy this again. Let it age a bit and share with friends.

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Photo of ommegangpbr
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Rasputin stares at you through the depths of a goblet. An opaque black stare with deep tan fringes bores into your brain.
This will not be an idle encounter.
A sweet yet bitter perfume floats along the air permeating your nostrils.
Distinctive. Not something you'd imagine to be appealing but convinces you otherwise.
The encounter is not meek by any standard. Charming yet repelling, both pulling you in and pushing you away.
The struggle is exhausting yet you can't help but thinking that you'll choose to cross paths again.

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Photo of confer
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Black as oil with a two finger head of caramel color. it leaves a massive trail of lace.
S- Sweet and smokey. It is your typical stout smell but a with a hint of sweetness in the smell.
T- I like this a lot better than most stouts, it has more flavor than just roasty malts.
M- The fell is exceptionally thick and cramy.
D- As stouts go I would have not trouble drinking this one again.

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Photo of pennsybrau
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into 20oz pint glass.

A-Deep dark brown, nearly black color. The head was caramel colored about one inch thick which quickly dissipated into a thin layer which remained for the duration. Nice dark lacing.

S-Hearty malty aroma, smelled of coffee with hints of chocolate. Very nice but not enough to hide Rasputin's high alcohol content.

T-There is a lot going on here. Strong coffee flavor, very malty with a bitter finish which dissipated as quickly as the head did. Then left with a pleasant malty aftertaste.

M-Carb balance is nice. Has a bitter coating that eventually turns into a warming sensation.

D-Goes down smooth but the alcohol is apparent. A very nice nightcap or a bedtime sipper.

I would not recommend this for a session. It would be very long night.

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Photo of drewbage
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled fresh bottles and poured into a Belgian tulip.

Opaque, black and very little brown head.

Aroma of pine, chocolate and dark fruit.

Big roasty coffeesque beer with a strong bright bitterness that rides through the thick body of the beer and leaves briskly finished that lingers with a bite

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Photo of DeltaGolfSierra
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The menacing picture of Rasputin on the bottle is an appropriate start to this intimidating beer. Appearance is completely black; totally opaque with a big dark tan head. Chocolate scents are strong, with a slight alcohol smell on the nose as well. The chocolate carries into the taste, but is really overpowered by the hops - perhaps a bit too much. There is a grape or fig taste lingering in the background, with a surge of bitterness in the finish. Not quite what I was expecting. Mouthfeel is full-bodied. A good beer overall, but a very bold and heavy one that I'd not drink on a regular basis.

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Photo of onmyslide
3.85/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: DARK! Seriously, it pours like motor oil, which is pretty awesome. Solid amount of head as well.

S: Malt and liquor.

T: Solid.

M: Very good. Good balance of carbonation.

D: Just dove in, but it really seems like something you could have two of for sure. Wouldn't suggest drinking more than probably two since the alcohol level is pretty high (9 or 10%).

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Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 3,540 ratings.