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Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout - North Coast Brewing Co.

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

10,361 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 10,361
Reviews: 3,397
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.47%
Wants: 355
Gots: 1,559 | FT: 47
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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 01-18-2001)
View: Beers (21) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 10,361 | Reviews: 3,397 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DenverHopHead
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%

Poured from a bottle with no clear freshness dating; into a pint glass.
Appearance - as dark as 4AM, with the slightest bit of light coming in at the bottom of the glass. Head is a toasted marshmallow pillow! Lacing is phenomenol!
Smell - a blend of cream, milk and dark chocolate.
Taste - more coffee and espresso and less chocolate compared to the nose. Some vanilla and dark chocolate that eventually shows up.
Feel - a coffee and dark chocolate bitterness, followed by a creamy yet roasted marshmallow coat on the tongue. Complex from first sip to last; this has a frame that could handle a much bigger ABV!
Overall - high quality brew, though I have a few others higher on my list.

Photo of jborg
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of eagles22
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

this is a solid RIS

Appearance: wonderful bitch black...with a 2 finger tan head...lacing all the way down to the last sip

Smell: of toffee and roasted malts lots of them and some hops in the background

Taste: is lots of roasted malts and also dark chocolate..

Mouthfeel: very silky goes down smooth..and also you dont get a burn from the alcohol for a 9% beer..leaves you wanting more and more of this great stuff

Drinkability: i could drink a couple but not so much

one of my favorite RIS beats brooklyns any day and im a big fan of brooklyn

Photo of starflyer58
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

So, there are few out there that might dare pair a beer with a song... but as this is my first review on BeerAdvocate, I'm going in a different direction and begin this review with just such a suggestion.

There's a group called Justice. and they have a song entitled Waters Of Nazareth. If there were a soundtrack to drinking a North Coast Old Rasputin, this would be it.

Pours a chunky darkness as if from the veins of some evil entity that, on the day it was created, refused to ever meet it's maker again.

The aroma hits you with heavy melodies of coffee-infused chocolate, possibly alcohol-soaked raisins.

The taste comes at you with burnt maltiness, burnt coffee, bitter hops, caramelized sugar, oaky finish?

Jesus, God... Don't mess with this beer.

Photo of CharlieMurphy
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into Chalice


A-4.5: DARK opaque black with half a finger of tan head that doesn't go away

S-3.0: Kind of a let down. It's hard to smell too much of what's going on. I only get malt with some faint roastiness and maybe a tiny hint of vanilla.

T-4.5: Bam! There's everything that I couldn't smell bursting out. HUGE dry roasted coffee beans, then more subdued chocolate malt then vanilla. Awesome.

M-4.5: Bold and filling upon drinking but surprisingly mild and barely there after many sips

D-4.0: Drinkability is excellent, if it weren't for the ABV slowing me down, I could have this all day. Damn good.

Total = 4.1


"Oh NOOO! It's Old Raspy!!!"

A-4.5: warm light brownie brown head on black body. Retains.

S-5.0: Smells sooo delicious. Chocolate, molasses, salt, cookies, figs, oatmeal, and some perfectly muted hops. Mouthwatering.

T-4.0: Hops coupled with carbonation here first and in the driver seat with some roastiness smoldering from the get-go then igniting in the middle. Some tiny sweet kick hits 3/4 through that makes me smack my tongue within my mouth. Best with some age?

M-4.0: not drying, not cloying, not tasting like 8% abv. Refreshing and well crafted even with the atypically higher carbonation (atleast as a wave at the beginning)

O-4.5: fucking classic.

Total = 4.33

Photo of throwthechaff
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Totally worth all the hype that this beer gets. This Russian Imperial Stout is a must try. Very dark in color, almost black smells of dark chocolate. Has a slight hop bitterness to as well. Very drinkable even though the 9% abv. A very good beer to sip and appreciate

Photo of Meerkey
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Black/dark brown, opaque. Thin beige head.

S: Dark chocolate and alcohol. Coffee and roasted malts.

T: So chocolatey! Dark and heavy. Espresso beans, some sweet malts, hint of hops. A little spicy.

M: Heavy and bitter, aftertaste a little too sticky sweet.

D: Very. I recommend it.

Photo of KBomb
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Old Rasputin pours out of the bottle like motor oil: thick and black as night. A fairly large head of soapy brown foam sits atop (especially considering the style). Clings to the glass like maple syrup. ORIS defines "exceptional appearance".

Smell is full of roasted malt, nuanced by hints of chocolate and a little booziness. Some caramel aroma grows as the beer warms up a little.

Taste is slightly restrained for the style, but no flavors feel out of place. A little char to the roasted malt, some coffee-like bitterness, and a note of hops. This beer's only fault is that the malt sweetness hides a little too well.

Slick, creamy mouthfeel. Moderately heavy, but not unexpected considering its design.

A solid RIS. Its what a stout aspires to be.

Photo of Lurkerson
4.21/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Nitro tap into a tulip.

A - she's a beauty! Almost pitch black, decent head, golden lacing

S - a bit more mellow than my eyes led me to think. Coffee, dark chocolate, sweet malts
T- deliciously bitter and chocolaty but well balanced with noticeable maltiness.

M - smooth and lingering, almost filmy

O - fantastic RIS. I'm very pleased with this beer and would definitely order again

Photo of Carolvs
4.21/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured out of a bottle into a standard ale glass: Dense, impenetrable, pitch-black with a foamy mocha head that lasted a while (although not quite as long as some other reviewers have noted--but many of those had the advantage of drinking on-tap).

Strong notes of licorice and spice--but two of the myriad flavors that spike your palate. Overall, this is a knock-out beer, exploding with flavor, and pretty intense with its 9%+ alcohol content. Hard to imagine a beer gourmond not loving this beer unless you're not keen on stouts. Few rivals to this baby, a real delight.

Photo of SerialHiker
4.21/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Pours the darkest possible brown, though it looks black…mocha colored head about a finger width formed and hung around…it’s thick and full of tiny bubbles…really nice lacing…a good looking brew! (4.5/5)

Smell: Full of roasted malts accompanied by coffee, cocoa, toffee, dark fruit and a touch of alcohol heat, which becomes more apparent as the beer warms…(4/5)

Taste: Much like the nose…starts with heavy roasted malts and fades into roasted espresso bitterness…mild dark fruit (plum, fig) sweetness, toffee, cocoa, alcohol heat all come through at some point adding nicely to the overall flavor…certainly warming my belly as I drink more...not overly hoppy…(4.25/5)

Mouthfeel: Medium body with medium to lots of carbonation…wet and mildly chewy…some alcohol heat on the palate…finishes with a dry bitterness…(4.25/5)

Overall: This is a good brew...it’s hard for me to say it’s the best imperial stout I’ve ever had, kinda feels like a run-of-the-mill upper level stout in smell, flavor and mouthfeel quite comparable to say Left Hand’s Fade to Black (which I love)…with that said, it definitely is an upper eschelon brew that deserves all the kudos it receives from beer aficionados…a very drinkable brew that I would consider sessionable, 1, 2 or even 3 would be a very happy night and one that would warm the belly as an indoor fire would warm the face…highly recommended, I’m excited to see how this beer after a year or more in my cellar will evolve…(4.25/5)

Photo of Abilow33
4.21/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The beer poored with an extremely thick light brown head. The smell was fantastic. It had a very strong smell like chocolate and molasses. The taste hit the taste buds in the back of my mouth and hung around a long time after. I will be buying this beer in the future.

Photo of Vivs85
4.21/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of trxxpaxxs
4.21/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a deep black with one full finger of frothy khaki colored head. The foam takes a bit to settle, and there is a ton of lacing left on the glass as it drinks.

S: The nose is roasted malt, burnt toast, and caramel. Some of the chocolate notes begin to come through as it warms. Smells good.

T: I initially get a smooth sweetness, a touch of spice, and as it progresses a bit, I get some chocolate.

M: Full bodied beer. Sweet, coating, and a solid amount of carbonation (maybe more than I really want).

O: Really nice Imp Stout. This was one of the first beers that got me into the style. I'm glad I went back to try it again. Would drink again/10.

Photo of oriolesfan4
4.21/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I always noticed that this beer was highly rated on this website and now I see why.. it's freakin delicious. It was only $2.29 for a single and worth every penny. A nice brown head, lacing all the way down. Great chocolate and burnt type aromas. Very smooth and balanced, goes down way too easy. A great beer... definitely in my top 5.

Photo of blitz134
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pitch black body...only the hints of Coke brown around the edges. Small light tan head on the pour, reduced to pockets of bubbles after a few minutes.

Sweet wine like aroma of dark grapes. Overtones of chocolate and some hints of toasted malts. Hints of alcohol come through and blend well with the aroma. Simple aroma but pleasing. Taste is loaded with toasted flavors. Big hits of chocolate and toffee with coffee coming through as well, quite the contrast to the aroma. Alcohol contributes a bit of a biting burn at the end, but doesn't really detract. Definately a sipper.

Mouthfeel is a little thinner than most stouts, but I find this to be typical of Russian Imperials. Drinkability is good. The alcohol feeling on the stomach limits this.

Photo of tweeder263
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours out a nice black brew with a 2 finger tan head,head recedes pretty quickly.Looks pretty well carbonated.Taste,,very hoppy up front and nice hints of coffee come into play and round it out.Slightly bitter linger detracts a little from the taste. Nice alcohol warming feeling.Very good Imp stout, would definitely have again.

Photo of JoeAmerican77
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured nto a tulip taster and also enjoyed out of the same bottle.

a- Pours pitch black pretty bubbly head that dissipates quite quickly leaving a little lacing

s- Chocolate and maple tingle the nose, anise is present and so is a little tobacco.

t- Dark chocolate and fruits, pear raisin and malts. A little wet grain in the back and through the nose. The alcohol is present but only invites.

m- Medium bodied, brilliant carbonation a great feature of the beer, the body does leave a little to be desired though. If you buy the bottle I would recommend it out of the bottle (never said that before but it seems to affect the light mouthfeel to a more robust and full one).

d- I would take on at least two. I say this because they are delicious and worth it, and with 9% alc your palate might be destroyed too much to fully move on to another good beer.

4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an Imperial pint glass.

A: Good head retention, 2in. nose, which is mocha, caramel in color. The deep black body is non-transparent.

S: Roasted malts with a complex nutty aroma.

T: This brew is very smooth and creamy. Strong malt up front, with a slight bitterness to finish.

M: A very powerful lingering taste, one that releases flavors well after the beer is gone.

D: A brew that is an ideal sipper, but for the style, this is one that I could drink often, even could have a few in a row, cannot say the same for other IRSs. Great flavors that keep you coming back for another analysis.

Photo of jp62099
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Stone Russian IMP glass, black of course, brownish head, good retention. Smells wonderful, roasty malts, chocolate and hints of coffee. Tastes rich with a smooth fill, alcohol is not overly apparent. Lots going on here more for my novice palate. Good beer.

Photo of BeerZack
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Completely opaque black with frothy brown head.

Smells of roasted coffee, toffee, chocolate, maybe a little nutty and some alcohol.

Bittersweet chocolate, coffee, creme brule, some spice and dark fruit also show up in this complex taste experience. Good hop bitterness on the finish to leave you wanting more.

Really nice, leaves a whole bitterness in your mouth after each drink that gives the impression of a bittersweet chocolate coating rather than gripping hop lupulin. Easy to see why so many people use the word "complex" when describing this one.

Photo of morimech
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours very dark black with a one-fingered tan head that had excellant retention. Lacing left down the entire glass surface.

Smells of roasted malt with the customary coffee and chocolate notes. A hint of alcohol is also noticed.

The flavor is full of malty goodness but it is a bit spoiled by a burnt and bitter aftertaste. Alcohol heat is also noted. Carbonation and the body are spot on leaving a creamy mouthfeel that is an awesome part of RISs. The ABV and cost hurt drinkability. A very good RIS but it is not my favorite.

Photo of goochpunch
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours out a rich black with ruby hues with a thin tan head that slowly dissipated to a thin layer of bubbles. Aromas are of roasted malt, dark chocolate, coffee, toasty malts, slight smoke, and marashino cherries. Taste is of sweet, dark chocolate chased with some strong, black coffee. There is some toasted malt in there as well as cherry candy and dried fruits. Finishes a bit smoky with pleasent astringent bitterness and a bit of a lactic acid twang. I detect a bit of citrus and pine in the hops very faintly, although these hops come out more in the burps. This beer really needs to sit a while before the mouthfeel is anywhere near decent. When its freshly poured and a bit too cool, it's thin and prickly, but just letting it sit a while and come closer to room temp., it becomes a bit fuller and mellows out a bit. Still, it could be better. Really drinkable RIS that has tons of flavor and a decent mouthfeel, once it warms up.

Photo of Docer
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Grabbed a little 4-pack of this at a QFC... kept hearing a lot about it.. just hadn't seen it up here until now..

- Poured slightly heavily into my pint glass... nice mocha head that settled down to a nice pinky thickness.. Totally dark.. can't see a thing through it... looks great!

- What a great scent! I can smell some fantastic hops in this... it smells very fresh... and if you said you mixed a fresh hop IPA with a guinness.. I wouldn't doubt you.. this doesn't smell at all like a 9% stout... which is a good thing! Slight roasty chocolate malt.. but very faint at all..

- Nice bitter chocolate malt.. sweet and bitter hop bite.. lovely bitter afterbite.. can't taste the 9% Alc. at all... very smooth..

- Bitter bomb of a stout but not sour or tart... slight chewyness, and dry... what a stout ought to be...

- Super good, and super drinkable... flavor digs into the tongue and doesn't let go for awhile... overall one of the most drinkable RIS's I have tried.

Photo of Dodo2step
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A nice 2 finger roasted tan head rises to the top after the pour. A nice dark chocolate look to the beer itself and it looks very inviting. It almost looks like night itself.

A caramel burnt roasted flavor hits my nose as i take a whiff. I can also smell the malt from the beer as well. It smells great and i can tell this is going to be a great beer.

The taste is that of a roasted yet burnt chestnut. It is a tad too strong of the burnt flavor. It tends to overshadow the malt flavor but still good nonetheless.

A full burnt flavor in my mouth as i hold there for a few seconds to take it all in. I love the flavor but like i said it leaves behind that burnt roasted flavor a tad too long. It is thick and creamy yet smooth like silk as it goes down.

A very good beer and i have another one. i think i am going to age it for a year and come back and do an update on it.

Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 10,361 ratings.