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Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout - North Coast Brewing Co.

Old Rasputin Russian Imperial StoutOld Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

8,372 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 8372
Reviews: 3289
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.23%

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)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Ratings: 8,372 | Reviews: 3,289 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of RomaniIteDomum


4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This looks quite different off nitro. The creamy tan head is beautiful on top of the black doom that is Rasputin.

The smell has quite a bit of fruit, coffee, and some cream.

Taste follows the nose fairly well. Lots of cream and stone fruit with a hint of creamed coffee in the finish.

Creamy as hell. I love nitro beers.

I never thought Raspy could be more drinkable, but off nitro it is.

Serving type: nitro-tap

06-25-2010 02:49:03 | More by RomaniIteDomum
Photo of COBeerBuff


4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into an 8 oz. snifter at Barley's in Shawnee, KS.

Appearance: When I first laid eyes upon the glass, it looked strikingly like a dry stout, whether this is due to a nitro tap or what, I don't know at this point. There was a solid finger and a half of tan colored head that looked soft and billowy. And the beer itself is black as night. No light is getting through today, and it's a pretty sunny day here on the plains.

Smell: This beer smells heavily of roasted chocolates and toasted grain malts. There is a lot of sweet vanilla and some cream as well. Subtle hops are present, but this beer is certainly all about the malts, which is exactly what an impy stout should be about.

Taste: Much like the nose, this beer is a heavy chocolate, grain malt bomb. The chocolates are mostly dark and heavy with a bit of spiciness as well. The grains on the other hand represent everything that is good with using toasted and burnt grain malts in a beer. I love it.

Mouthfeel: Amazingly enough, the nose didn't display anything overt, but the first sip had some stinging alcoholic esters, which was very surprising. As the beer warmed and settled, these phenolic overtones mellowed considerably, but it was a bit harsh to start. This brew was definitely served too cold for my tastes.

Drinkability: As I find myself staring at my final third, I can't help but remark about the drinkability of this brew. Many RIS tend to be heavy, thick, viscous sipping beers. This is not like those. It definitely has a pronounced mouthfeel. It's not too light, but it doesn't sit heavily in your stomach either. North Coast created a winner with this RIS, and it is one that I will continue to drink happily here in Kansas.

Serving type: nitro-tap

06-23-2010 23:14:29 | More by COBeerBuff
Photo of boothbeer


4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Nitro-tap at the Map Room in Chicago

A: Pours a viscous dark black with 2 fingers of this dark mocha colored head. Lacing is beautiful and covers the snifter as this beers is consumed.

S: Dark chocolate and lightly roasted malts. Almost a sweetness to the aroma.

T: Lightly roasted malts and chocolate up front. Touch of vanilla. A little bit of hops comes through before the malts leave a roasty finish.

M: Having this on nitro made this amazing. Just super creamy and smooth. Very viscous and chewy. Probably one of the best mouthfeels on any beer I've had.

D: This beer was so smooth it went down with ease. I've always liked this beer out of the bottle, but nitro made it so much better. If I see this again, I will be ordering it.

Serving type: nitro-tap

06-07-2010 04:33:13 | More by boothbeer
Photo of glid02


4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Nitro-tap at the Brick Store.

Pours black with a large and cascading brown head. The head slowly recedes into a thin layer on top leaving thick lacing.

Smells of roasted malts, smooth dark chocolate, and very light leafy hops. As the beer warms the aroma sweetens a bit.

Tastes similar to how it smells, although a bit more complex. Lightly roasted malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by semi-sweet chocolate flavors. Midway through the sip the chocolate flavors sweeten a bit and are joined by very mild amounts of vanilla. Finally, hints of leafy hops come into play right before a mildly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is great. It's got a very viscous thickness with grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is very good. I finished my glass quickly and could easily have another.

Overall I was surprised at how much the nitro-tap changed this beer and even more surprised at how it positively affected it. Well worth a shot.

Serving type: nitro-tap

05-31-2010 23:49:49 | More by glid02
Photo of djbreezy


4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had on nitro-tap at Apex bar in Portland, OR. Poured into a stemmed glass.

appearance - pours a thick and viscous black with a nice tan, head, lacing spans the entire length of the glass

smell - chocolate brownie, lightly roasted malts

taste - chocolate, coffee, earthy hops

mouthfeel - chewy, medium bodied, incredibly smooth

drinkability - very complex, amazing mouthfeel on nitro, really smooths out the flavors

Serving type: nitro-tap

05-07-2010 04:47:58 | More by djbreezy
Photo of Durge


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

At Jameson Tavern in Freeport, ME this famous brew is near pitch black with a modest light brown head and similar lacing. The aroma says chocolatey herbal hop and some alcohol. The flavor offers charcoal raisin and prune hop bite. There's brown bread molasses and wine-like qualities that hint at a barleywine. Near full bodied but for a fairly intense beer it's drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

04-25-2010 19:35:14 | More by Durge
Photo of cavedave

New York

4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pure black and opaque, carries a brief dark beige head, leaving a fine knit lace on the snifter, and partial skim. Nice.

Smell is heavy on licorice, some dark caramel in there, toasty grain, some rounded yeast notes, and hints of floral and bitter behind them.

Wow, roastier in the mouth than the nose, full of licorice, dark roast malts, dark caramel, bitter coffee (almost a caffeinne bitter), some bitter chocolate. Along the way it picks up a bit of sweet, and some very light fruity notes in mid sip, then ushers in a dark, dank finish of herbal bitter and malty char (I mean this in a good way), warm, spicy hints of alcohol. Not the most complex big stout, but the flavors are very tasty, very bright, especially if you crave roastier offerings.

Low carb., not as viscous as some others, and a finish that ends up coating the mouth with a bit too much licorice residue. Not this brew's best quality rated for style.

Considering its size, dark and interesting taste, and lower than average viscosity. this brew is highly drinkable.

At this price for a growler (2 for 1 at Half Time) it is the best buy on the planet. At regular price I may revisit, maybe not. Right now there are superb, and better, stouts out there.

Serving type: growler

04-18-2010 19:40:20 | More by cavedave
Photo of blackc5


4.55/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On nitro tap in a pint glass.

A - Amazingly black with a perfect 2-finger tan head that is just densely creamy thanks to the nitro tap. High retention, and great lacing as well. Exceptional no doubt.

S - Dark chocolate at the forefront, with some coffee, roasted caramel malts, and all very nicely balanced. Smells like dessert.

T - Outstanding, this one lives up to the hype. It is a chocolate milkshake minus the sweetness, and still all of the great beer characteristics of a quality stout. The dark chocolate is dominant, but does not overwhelm the other characteristics of the beer like many chocolate-additive stouts do. Top notch, and I should have had another rather than trying something else... Will be buying a four-pack next time I am at the store and see this.

M - Again, milkshake-like in it's creaminess. The nitro really works here, and lends such a rich mouthfeel.

D - Surely no session beer, but it accels for the style, and is quite wonderful. I will seek this out in the future, and surely never pass when given a chanc to have it on nitro.

Serving type: nitro-tap

04-16-2010 03:32:44 | More by blackc5
Photo of PhillyStyle


4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap, at Pizzeria Paradiso (Washington DC, Dupont Circle):

Served in a cognac glass, black body with about a 3 finger mocha colored head that lasted the entire beer.

Aroma was strong, heavy roasted malt with hints of coffee, chocolate and possibly some hops, but faint. The alcohol crept in near the end of the beer.

Taste was very good, again heavy roasted malt flavor. The hops try to make their presence know for some balance, but mostly that is a losing battle. The beer finished with a nice coffee aftertaste that was very enjoyable.

Thick body, right carbonation and really easy to drink. Did get a hint of the alcohol as I got to the end. I think that this beer would probably work best at the end of a meal; it would certainly be difficult to drink more than two in any one setting. Overall, great beer.

Serving type: on-tap

04-15-2010 15:39:21 | More by PhillyStyle
Photo of spoons


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

On tap. Fathers Office.

Appearance is dark, dark, dark. has a great small bubbles keeping the coffee colored head and lacing around for a while.

Smells of roasted malt, espresso, chocolate, and hint of caramel.

taste. A big chocolate/coffe taste that only gets better as it warms. Has some burnt malt bitterness that balances the overall sweetness of this beer. this great beer.

Serving type: on-tap

04-13-2010 19:01:43 | More by spoons
Photo of KI9A


4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Cola black, thin head, some lace.

S: Mocha, malty.

T: Nothing up front, just a great balance of chocolate malts, coffee, some dark fruit even. Also detect some hoppyness at the back.

M: Medium to slightly heavy. Pleasing.

D: ABV hidden well. Could not tell if it was 6% or 10%. Thats scary. I wouldn't call it a session beer, but, 2 of these slid pretty easy.

Serving type: on-tap

04-03-2010 14:49:07 | More by KI9A
Photo of DmanGTR

New York

4.65/5  rDev +8.1%
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

Serving type: on-tap

03-29-2010 02:18:11 | More by DmanGTR
Photo of ChrisPro


3.7/5  rDev -14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On nitro tap at North Coast brewpub on 6/28/09. Pours solid black, creamy mocha head. Hints of chocolate, but dominated by coffee aroma. Mild sweetness with bitter coffee finish and a little slick on the tongue. Solid, well above average, imperial stout.

Note: factoring in the bottle price, this beer is exceptional!

Serving type: nitro-tap

03-29-2010 02:09:02 | More by ChrisPro
Photo of Beerandraiderfan


4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big badass black and brown color, brown foam head, great lacing. Burnt aroma.

Burnt taste, massive. A little hoppy. Coffee dominates, choco comes after that. Good bitterness, yet thick and slick. Minimal alcohol presence relatively speaking. Gets easier to drink throughout, great price compared to all the other "to the extreme special release" IS out there. Take a lesson boys, this is how you bring the best product at the best price to the consumer.

Serving type: on-tap

03-24-2010 16:26:30 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of mpensworth


4.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep dark black with little tan head and awesome lacing. Smells like an evil chocolate coffee and tastes the same. Amazing coffee and malt tastes here, feels heavy in the mouth with a nice even carbonation. I love this beer, but after a pint or 2 that would be about it. It's perfect to sip at the end of the day, after dinner, just before you go to bed.

Serving type: on-tap

03-24-2010 15:08:33 | More by mpensworth
Photo of Lolli1315


4.65/5  rDev +8.1%
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.

Serving type: nitro-tap

03-20-2010 23:11:25 | More by Lolli1315
Photo of djaeon


3.75/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Has the typical dark pour of an RIS. Very dark brown to black in appearance. Pours with little head & has little retention or lacing.

Has the pleasant dark roast coffee/dark chocolate aroma that has become so familiar.

This seems to lose the coffee aroma when you take a sip. It gives way to the dark chocolate.

Has a pretty smooth mouthfeel, with the exception of some minor bitterness. Also, this has a bit of dryness to it.

Overall, very drinkable i think. I'd definitely have another.

Serving type: on-tap

03-09-2010 01:29:55 | More by djaeon
Photo of urwithdave


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

On tap at world of beer. Poured into a ccb snifter.
A-black as midnight. A solid 2" of head. Solid retention and crazy lacing left.

S-dark roasted malts. Coffee and dark chocolate.

T-bittnerness from dark chocolate. Roasted malts and hints of vanilla. Alcohol is present, however its not as strong as I was expecting with such a high abv.

M- nice and creamy. With just enough carbonation. A slight burn is present in my nose and throat.

D- A good sipper. I don't think I would drink more then 2 in a row. Abv wouldn't allow me to have to many anyways.

Serving type: on-tap

03-08-2010 05:26:21 | More by urwithdave
Photo of OneDropSoup


4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Another beauty on tap at House of 1,000 Beers in New Kensington, PA.

Poured into a shaker: a thick black, no highlights I noticed. Thin but foamy tan head, soft gauzy lacing.

Smells of dark chocolate & roast coffee, mild booze, with a marshmellow sweetness backing it up.

Taste is rich & complex: smooth chocolate & caramel up front, quickly turns roasted & slightly bitter, then rounds out & become sweet & creamy like chocolate meringues. Alcohol brings some heat. Ends up very toasty & even in the aftertaste -- full of flavor without wearing out the tastebuds.

Mouthfeel is smooth & creamy, full-bodied. Some heat & bite from the booze.

This is a great beer, but powerful. Consume with caution. I thoroughly enjoyed this, but one is satisfying.

Serving type: on-tap

02-23-2010 22:21:32 | More by OneDropSoup
Photo of 4000qtrap


4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Source/Serving: Draft, 25cl

Smell: Chocolate and coffee that comes off as very lively rather than dark and somber. Toasted grains are prominent, rather than being too burnt or roasty which is unique. Also some orange oil essence and slight tobacco notes. Raisin appears as it warms and some overripe, washed rind cheese.

Taste: Incredibly intense flavors. Overall pretty dry with burnt espresso bean characteristics. 4 flavor stages . At first its very smooth and creamy like many stouts. Then the flavor accelerates becoming quite bitter and highly reminiscent of eating lightly dark chocolate malt dipped espresso beans. There are some caramelized malt notes in there too that balance nicely. Then there is a brief wave of one of the best coffee flavors in a beer I've ever had. This then progresses to an even more bitter but also very dry stage with pleasantly bitter, roasty caramelized malt profile that is delightful and intense. Lingers forever.

Notes: This beer is driven by dry espresso flavors that are simply delicious. However its not too dry so as to hurt drinkability. The roast flavors, bitterness, and sweetness all work to enhance one another and is very delicious.

Serving type: on-tap

02-22-2010 04:21:12 | More by 4000qtrap
Photo of ThreeWiseMen


4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled at Creekside Brewing Co. in San Luis Obispo last night.

Served in an Old Rasputin nonic.

Appearance: Pitch black body with a tall, dense, pile of brown foam on top. Head retention is a m a z i n g. While I've always loved the look of Old Rasputin, I've never seen one quite like this. The nitro does some pretty incredible things for it. Great lacing. Fantastic colors. Perfect!

Smell: Tons of roasted malt and dark chocolate with milder suggestions of coffee, pine, lactose, floral hops, and fruity esters.

Taste: Roasted malt, dark chocolate, black coffee, dulled pine, and mild burnt notes. Very roasty and robust with solid, long-lasting bitterness. Pretty intense. The nitro seems to make it roastier than normal. I like.

Mouthfeel: I think I might like this on plain CO2 better. This version is softer and creamier, but I actually miss the bite. Full, rich, and robust with a long-lasting bitter-roasty aftertaste.

Drinkability: Pretty rough, but really flavorful. This took awhile to get through, but I'll definitely be ordering it again.

Serving type: nitro-tap

02-14-2010 18:22:12 | More by ThreeWiseMen
Photo of hops1337


4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm reviewing the nitro version although i have had way more of it bottles and regular draft. Had this at the green frog in the 'ham. First thing i noticed was how smooth it was. Damn i could drink a lot of this stuff! Way smoother than the bottles. Still had all the taste and complexity of the bottle version, just way easier to drink. I just love the tobacco flavor of old ras, i don't know why. One of my favorites of all time, hands down...

Serving type: nitro-tap

02-02-2010 08:36:12 | More by hops1337
Photo of teovaldi


4.63/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours pitch black with a small light brown head. Incredible amounts of lacing.

Coffee, coffee and more coffee mixed with dark chocolate and some malts in there as well. A bit of sweetness and alcohol comes as the beer warms. Exceptional smell!

Lots and lots of coffee up front, bitter chocolate with some malts. Finishes slightly bitter/boozy but very nice.

Thick, vicious, velvety, almost creamy mouthfeel. Very nice and also much better on tap versus bottled.

While this is thick and vicious you hardly taste the alcohol at all. Quite drinkable considering how big this brew is.

Serving type: on-tap

01-27-2010 17:44:40 | More by teovaldi
Photo of MrDanno96


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

Was very excited to get to try one of my favorite RISs on tap for the first time.

A: Poured pitch black with a beautiful 2 finger off-white head. Tons of foamy lacing down the sides of the glass.

S: Rich coffee immediately hits the nose, intermingled with dark chocolate, espresso, and roasted malts. Smells great!

T: Lots of coffee and espresso up front - more than I get when drinking it from the bottle. Dark chocolate and toasty malts are in the background too. A little booze is also detectable, but doesn't detract from the flavor. ]

M: Little carbonation, but so incredibly smooth. I couldn't believe how easy this went down! I want to drink it all night.

D: I think I like the flavor of the bottled version just a bit more, but this is an extraordinary stout no matter how you drink it. If you have the opportunity to try this on draft, do it! One of the best Russian Imperials out there.

Serving type: on-tap

01-15-2010 06:09:14 | More by MrDanno96
Photo of jampics2


4.7/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A modern day classic. Perhaps the epitome of the style!

A jet-black glass of gold sits infront of me. A huge frothy head never goes away.

Smells amazing. Chocolate, roasted malts, creamy goodness.

Taste is just the bees knees. Sweet chocolate, bitter dark chocolate, roasted malts all mixed in immaculate proportions. Bitterness only accentuates the sweetness. Holy cow, this is so smooth! Rasputin was one of the first RIS's I ever had and, on nitro tap, it's hands down the purest example of perfect RIS flavor and balance I've ever had.

Mouthfeel is milkshake thick, carb (nitro) is perfect. Drinkability is unheard of for this kind of business.

Serving type: nitro-tap

01-01-2010 17:16:20 | More by jampics2
Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 8,372 ratings.