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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.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

3,511 Reviews
THE BROS
97
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 3,511
Hads: 11,228
rAvg: 4.28
pDev: 8.88%
Wants: 481
Gots: 2,273 | FT: 56
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 (25) | 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: 3,511 | Hads: 11,228
Photo of jjchristiano
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured into my Duvel Tulip.
Took bottle out of fridge a good half hour ago.
Man I love this beer. A very very easy drinking 9% ABV Russian Imperial Stout.
I liked it so much I dont have any more to sip and make additional comments. Only bought a single in a mix-a-sixpack. Will buy a 4? or 6? pack next time I see it. (318 characters)

Photo of WilliamD
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I've had this one many times, and I finally decided to review it.
Pours black into my pint glass. Nice, eighth-inch tan head that remains throughout.
Smells of coffee, roasted malts, and dark chocolate.
Taste is astounding, but I of course already knew that. Coffee grounds, chocolate, malts- rich and complex and delicious. Alcohol is well-hidden.
Mouthfeel is perfect, in my opinion. Smooth, creamy, with perfect balance of carbonation and bitterness. Slight alcohol warming.
The drinkability on this one is very good- as I said, it's well-hidden, and I have drank all four in the past and still made it to work on time with only a mild headache.
This is still one of my favorite imperial stouts. I'd love to some day get ahold of the XI or the Anniversary Barrel-Aged. (771 characters)

Photo of Lolli1315
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A- Opaque black with a three finger head that looks as if cream were poured in the beer because of the nitrogen used on tap. If people think that Guiness looks good, they should take a gander at this.

S- Large amounts of roasted malts present with a coffee background and somewhat of a bitter chocolate finish. Alcohol is present, but not overpowering as I find usual with good Russian Imperial Stout.

T- Wow, this beer takes the ordinary Old Rasputin and puts it on steroids for me. Would rather give this somewhere between a 4.5 and a 5 as I feel the need to show what I think is a better beer. Roasted malts and a coffee taste dominate with dark, smooth chocolate finishing out the rear. Just enough kick from the hops to make this an excellent beer.

M- Cannot get much better than this. Full bodied and chewy mouthfeel with a much more fluid and smooth body provided from the nitrogen. Cannot emphasize how smooth this beer is and the degree it adds to every sip.

D- Before I knew it, I looked down to see this beer already gone, and wanting much more. My wallet could take a beating if this was on tap regularly. (1,121 characters)

Photo of Gosox8787
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 oz. stubby bottle poured into a glass.

Appearnce is opaque black with a small brown head with average retention. Aroma is strong coffee and espresso notes. Some citrus and lemongrass notes also come in in smaller amounts. Taste hits with rich espresso and black coffee notes. There is a good hop character that adds some nicely balanced citrus notes. Some slight dark fruit sweetness is also mildly present. Complex yet extraordinarily well balanced. Mouthfeel is full bodied with strong carbonation. Despite a high ABV and rich flavors, this is drinkable. The booze is well hidden and the flavor does not tire.

Overall, a great, rich, complex, balanced RIS. A classic in my book. (701 characters)

Photo of TrappistJohnMD
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours black with tan head and tons of lacing on sides of Stone IRS tulip.

Smell is toasted malt, chocolate, and coffee. There is also a nice hoppy citrus in the background too.

Taste is sweet toasted malt up front. There is tons of chocolate and coffee flavor. Nice citrus begins to come through as it warms up. There is so much complexity here that I have trouble describing it.

Mouthfeel is full bodied with good carbonation.

Overall this is fantastic. One of my new favorites. (485 characters)

Photo of BrianGaynor
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My first official review, so bear with me.

Appearance: pours completely jet black with a two finger tan head. Very thick pour. I personally love a thick beer so this has a lot of appeal to me.

Smell: Roasted malts, chocolate, a bit of vanilla maybe?

Taste: this doesn't hit like some of the 9.0% beers I've had in the past. Really pleasing taste of roasted malts and hints of vanilla.

Mouthfeel: as said earlier, this beer is thick. You can really feel the thickness, but it still goes down smooth.

Overall: this beer is pretty good, I am going to enjoy drinking the other three in the pack. (598 characters)

Photo of srandycarter
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Into the tulip

A - Almost impermeable brown, like black, 1.5 inch mocha head, small bubble thin but coating lacing.

S - Burnt malt, coffee, a bit of a funky kind of smell, too.

T- Big blast of sweet and bitter/burnt malt, nice, nice balance.

M - Great carb, balance so good, creamy too.

D- ok, yeah, this one could hurt you, it's so good.

A new stout favorite, for sure! (376 characters)

Photo of dba103
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Drank cold from regular glass poured from bottle.

Look: Very dark brown/black with red tinges on the edge. Pretty large, tan colored head (medium pouring) with lots of lacing. Head lasts a few minutes then dies down.

Smell: Malty, slightly boozy smell with roasted coffee notes.

Taste: Dark roasted coffee and bitter chocolate, molasses flavors. The 9% abv is pretty well masked, with the bitterness of coffee/chocolate and warming sensation of alcohol on the back of the tongue and throat on the finish.

Feel: Decently thick, it has a nice smooth mouth feel with slight carbonation.

Overall: Excellent stout, one of the best ones I've had. Will definitely be buying again. (680 characters)

Photo of JamesS
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours an excellent deep black with wonderful tan head and very nice lacing. Excellent deep malty scent with wonderfully huge roasted grain aromas and a slight hint of chocolate. Excellent taste, with a huge malt kick, wonderful roasted grains, a small chocolate hit at the end, and a nice hit of hops that comes through just a bit at the end as well; no alcohol tinge, either, which was a huge bonus. Went down entirely too smooth for such a high ABV brew. (456 characters)

Photo of DmanGTR
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Review from notes on 10/23/09. On tap at MacGregor's.

A - Very dark brown/black with garnet hues in the light. Tan head with excellent lacing and retention. 4.5

S - Lots of roasted malt, caramel, and vanilla. Hint of fruitiness and expresso too. 4.5

T - Hint of blackberry and lots of toasted malt. Caramel and vanilla apparent in the finish. 4.5

M - Medium bodied, extremely smooth. Velvety, yes indeed. 5.0

D - I need this. Now. All frickin night. Sex in my mouth please. 5.0 (482 characters)

Photo of tavernjef
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Solid black, black as a moonless night....one finger high head of super lumpy, solid crunchy top, but also looks fluffy and light, tan in color, leaves some spotty lace patches. Smell, dead on, is a great sweet dark chocolatey aroma with notes of dark fruit - banana, starfruit, mango, strawberry, and black cherry all noted. Taste is a swirling light chocolate, sweet and dark smoothness throughout, yum. Nice twinged hops in the finish that brings out just the right bitterness and dryness to say hello kindly and leave you with a smile. Feel is full and creamy with a way easy smoothness that makes this a amazingly drinkable stout. North Coast has a winner here.

Thanks to Feloniousmonk for serving this up. YUM!!! (721 characters)

Photo of msubulldog25
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this beer twice today, once on-tap at a restaurant (too cold, served in a pint glass), once at home (warmer 12 oz. bottle poured to pint glass). Reviews would be similar, tho at home was the better version: warmer = more taste & aroma.

A: Almost perfectly black, with the faintest hints of copper red at the edges. One finger light tan-colored head. A beautiful stout.

S: Rich coffee and chocolate, grows more intense the warmer the beer gets.

T: The chocolate and coffee are here with a definite lingering sweetness. Heavy bittering hops initially which evolve into the sweeter flavors. Alcohol warming and fruit flavors come out with warming. A decadent group of well-balanced flavors.

M: Medium/full body. Slightly thick & heavy for a stout. Lingering bittersweetness. Mild carbonation.

D: So delicious, worthy of more than one. A sipping beer due to higher abv, but a beer I could (and did) have more than one of. (936 characters)

Photo of benito
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Old Rasputin is a black brew with mahogany highlights around the edges and a complex bouquet that mixes a clear alcohol presence with citrus, brown sugar, and tobacco. It's most pronounced flavor is its smokiness, but this doesn't overwhelm the bittersweet edge, hints of pineapple, alcohol bite, and leathery dryness. The flavors meld together in one of the most drinkable and smooth imperial stouts that I've ever had, with each sip revealing a new hint of flavor and depth.

The fruitiness (which may be an effect of my aging) does detract slightly from the overall heft of the body and the finish is just a little too watery, but the length and mix of flavors as well as the overall smoothness of this brew easily make up for those flaws.

This is a fantastic RIS and a must try beer. No wonder so many BAs before me have found a way to get their hands on this brew. (875 characters)

Photo of scotorum
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought two months ago. Had a tiny sample at the North Coast booth at the Green River Brewfest in Greenfield Mass. in June, and was not impressed. Seemed too harsh. But I bought a bottle to give it a full chance.

Poured into a Samuel Smith English tulip from the 12 oz. bottle.

a: Black with a huge brown head which dissipated slowly to heavy surface foam and extensive lacing.

s: Dark malt

t: Slips right past your lips and then hits the palate with dark ashy caramel malt and bitter hops. High ABV is not evident at first until you realize it's there under the prominent malt cover. Surprisingly dry finish for such a strong stout.

m: Slick and smooth. Lighter than might be expected from the color.

o: Outstanding stout. Sexy mouthfeel, powerful dark malt/hop balance. Probably way better than anything the real Rasputin ever put in his gullet. Would certainly buy a fourpack whenever a good chance arises.
:
UPDATE 3/27/14: As part of my ongoing re-review of my top rated brews, I have another bottle here to check out.

a: same as before, requiring additional pours since I was using a Victory Donnybrook Stout 12 ounce English nonick this time with no extra room for the huge and stubborn tan foam head.

s: The aroma is glorious, strong chocolate and coffee notes in there.

t: Smooth is still prominent, as is black coffee and dark chocolate from the roasty Stout malts. Imperial hop bite is overshadowed by the flavor and smooth texture.

m: Same as before, wouldn't call it lighter than might be expected now, great body and just the right heft.

o: Still wows me. Not changing any rating. One of my top ten brews, and will definitely be a go-to stout. (1,672 characters)

Photo of Nathaniel4321
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

One of the best beers on the planet. I recently had the bourbon barrel aged versions, so good. I sipped and savored. Thick and viscous, great mouth feel, good malt hop balance, chocolate notes, and coffee hints. So good. (220 characters)

Photo of soulgrowl
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Intensely dark burgundy-brown; almost black. Opaque even when held up to the light, with a fiery brick-red glow along the edges. The head is frothy and resilient, its color a dark, coffee-stained, cinnamon-infused beige, very reminiscent of a double capuccino. Overall, the beer would match nicely with a ski lodge.

Smell: Aroma is surprisingly subtle and subdued compared to the beer's visual impact. It is earthy and natural, with campfire-like burnt tones. The bitter combination of chocolate and coffee and sweet overtones of maple trees foreshadow the beer's complicated taste.

Taste: Wonderful! Chocolate and espresso provide the beer's foundation, covered with an intense, burnt-to-perfection malt flavor. Then there is a layer of stewed fruit-and-vegetable sweetness (especially cherries). An undercurrent of almond (specifically amaretto and marzipan) pops up now and then. Lingering finish retains roasty and nutty elements in your mouth for a long time. Amazing! This would go so well with dark wheat toast spread with Nutella, or with any dark chocolate. Might also be good with some kind of flaky pastry, like a Danish, turnover, or kringle.

Mouthfeel: Although the beer is very viscous, it is not as creamy as I expected due to its medium-sized bubbles. Probably for the best, since the lightness helps keep the beer from being too overwhelming. After you swallow and lick your lips, the beer still clings to you.

Drinkability: The high alcohol content and richness of this beer make it something that demands to be drank slowly and deliberately, but the flavor is so enchanting that it wouldn't be hard to knock back more than a few of these between dinner and bedtime. (1,708 characters)

Photo of Converge
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12oz bottle poured into a 16oz tulip. Here goes my first RIS!

A - Pours with a thick, three-and-a-half-finger head, dark mocha in color. Totally black color for the beer. Probably the darkest beer I've ever seen. Good head retention and fantastic lacing.

S - Tons of roasted malt, rich dark chocolate, and crisp floral hops. I'm actually surprised at how prominent the hops are on the nose.

T - Whoa! Talk about full flavored. Upfront this beer is packed with roasted and burnt malt, espresso bitterness, and subtle but sharp hops. First sip finishes with a thick, warm, roasted bitterness that just assaults the palate. After the initial shock to my taste-buds, this stout shows a sweeter side as well. I can pick out a strong chocolate flavor very easily, as well as notes of dark fruit and molasses. The alcohol is pretty warming, but the actual taste of the booze is masked incredibly well under this barrage of dark flavors. The crisp, floral hops give the finish a clean, almost herbal feel without feeling too astringent for my palate. A touch of brown sugar and caramel is also present near the end. Very well crafted flavor profile here.

M - Heavy body, really viscous with a creaminess to it as well. Decent amount of carbonation as well. Finishes quite dry from all of the bitter flavors present, but not too dry. Warm alcohol presence is also detectable, but certainly doesn't hint to a 9.0% ABV. Towards the end, the feeling even becomes fairly sticky. Strong and full bodied without being too overwhelming. Could have been a bit smoother, however.

D - As mentioned, this beer is my introduction into RIS's, and I definitely enjoyed my first. I must admit I'm not too fond of overly-hoppy beers, and I had my doubts on this one after the hoppy aroma, but the flavor turned out to be very well balanced and carefully crafted. Deceptively easy to drink too, making this one a bit of a sipper for a guy like me. This one really is a monster, but a tasty one at that. I'm happy to have three more bottles sitting around. (2,034 characters)

Photo of MSchae1017
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer was tasted in a imperial pint glass from a bottle.

This beer pours jet black with a creamy tan head that holds amazingly well the whole way down the glass and leaves some impressive lace. The smell is sweet roasted and dark chocolate malts. A very nice very strong flavor. The taste is also great. Fully of dark roasted malts and chocolate malts. There is a great sweetness to this beer which is immediately balanced by some huge bitterness. The mouthfeel is exceptional. This can be described as chewey and creamy. Just fantastic. Overally Highly drinkable. A fantastic RIS.

And as I close I wanted to give you this quote from Seinfeld "The Suicide"

If you named a kid Rasputin do you think that would have a negative effect on his life?

...not in this case (780 characters)

Photo of mcnabb0001
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle with Rasputin on the label putting a communist curse on everyone that drinks this.

A - pours jet black with a nice thickness, big tan colored head just rises to the top of the glass and leaves a thick lacing as it dissipates.

S- sweet, coffee, dark chocalate, dark fruit (raisons) actually the sweet alcohol smell stings the nose a little.

T - nice bitterness hits the tongue followed by a blast of coffee and dark chocalate. Sharp sweetness rides the chocalate coffee wave down the throat. Alcohol is definitely present but not overbearing.

M - fulled bodied, thick, and smooth. nicely carbonated for an Imperial with a nice warming affect in the back of throat and in the chest as this one goes down.

D - Rich, smooth, and filling. This Stout is big and boozy. One maybe two are all I need of this Imperial.

Overall this is one of the best I have had it ranks top not sure if I Old Rasputin or BBCS better at this point (939 characters)

Photo of Dhren1979
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Vintage: 2010

Serving Type: 12 oz bottle poured into a Tulip glass.

A: Pours an inky, black w/only the slightest hints of mahagony red at the edges.

S: Coffee. Roasted coffee malts. A hint of bitter hops present irself and is quite welcomed and a surprise.

T: The dry taste of coffe makes itself known right away. Dry roasted malts. A slight bitterness presents itself but quickly disappears.

M: A wonderful coating of my mouth. So smooth and silky...a great sipper.

D: Oh why is this my last one??!! This needs to be in the fridge at all times!! (552 characters)

Photo of DrewV
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle out of my beer fridge at 45 degrees into a Spiegelau Stemmed Pilsner (tulip).

A: Pitch black. Thick 2-finger mocha head sits on top. Dense lacing fills the glass to the brim as the head recedes.

S: Very smooth molasses, toasted coffee, slighty boozy, although still well hidden, not much dark fruit, but you can still get a sense of it.

T: Peppery alcohol bite kicks in up front, then fades rapidly, transitioning into a deep coffee flavor, then finally decays into a bittersweet chocolate mocha finish. Definitely complex and long-lasting. Highest marks here.

M: Medium-high carbonation with plenty of very fine bubbles, which hides the ABV well.

O: Once the initial kick of the spiciness fades, the flavors mellow and reveal themselves in sequence. A fantastic brew that truly deserves its classic status. An unbelievable bargain, to boot, makes this a no-brainer as a stout staple in everyone's beer fridge. Quite possibly my favorite brew to date; I enjoy finishing the evening with this masterpiece. (1,030 characters)

Photo of montageman
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip.

When the weather gets cold, there are few beers I enjoy more than Old Rasputin. Big, bold, & intense, but drinkable and balanced. Chocolate & coffee are the dominant flavors - notes of vanilla & black licorice are present as well. A perfect after dinner beer & with 9% ABV the warming qualities make it an ideal winter libation. Highest recommendation. (374 characters)

Photo of HopintheSouth
4.66/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Smell of deep chocolate, mocha and smooth oats all blended together. Khaki head that looks like it could float a quarter on top. The mouth feel is unbelievable for a beer with this much ABV and a RIS. Smooth as smooth can get. Taste is superb and very subtle alcohol. By far one of the best RIS I have had...so glad I finally tried it. (341 characters)

Photo of soupyman10
4.66/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Hard one to grade down, this. Had it on nitro-tap at Meridian Pint in DC when I recognized that it was probably the best thing available, and man was I right. Huge, delicious, creamy beer. Monster thick creamy white head on top of a near-black brew. Beer is huge chocolate, roasted malt, molasses, raisins, and a hint of coffee. Had this beer many a time, but nitro-tap might be the best available option. Will definitely be grabbing it again. (443 characters)

Photo of NickT2121
4.66/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - poured into snifter. Poured a dark dark almost burnt motor oil color. With a mocha 1 head with small bubbles. Head diminished quickly. The color was solid black with almost no Amber or Moahagany at the bottom lacing very thick

S - very malty chocolate notes, plum, brown sugar, boozey scent, vanilla, coffee, burnt grains. Very complex and amazing smells

T - Roasted malts upfront with a chocolate coffee taste on the end with caramel sweetness. So goood. The finishing taste changes to me. I get vanilla one sip, caramel the other, malt and coffee the other

M - thick silky creamy feel very heavy. This Stout is very bubbly.

O - this imperial Stout is a sipper and is very good. The flavors are always changing on my palate and always amazed by every sip. The only thing not making it perfect was the carbonation it was overwhelming at first but after letting it sit for a bit the flavors busted and the carbonation died down.. Great stout

Enjoy (957 characters)

Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 3,511 ratings.