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Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout - North Coast Brewing Co.

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

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9,003 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,003
Reviews: 3,316
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.23%
Wants: 242
Gots: 947 | FT: 31
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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Ratings: 9,003 | Reviews: 3,316 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of MadCat

New Jersey

4.47/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap at the Taphouse on Queensway in Hampton, VA.

Appearance: Served in a chalice. Completely black with a one finger brown head that dissipates at a reasonable pace and leaves tons of lacing.

Smell: Good roasty malts, dark chocolate, caramel, coffee

Taste: More good roasted malt, dark chocolate, caramel, coffee, an excellent Russian Imperial Stout, I would consider it the gold standard of the style.

Mouthfeel: Very creamy and smooth, full body with low carbonation.

Overall: A top notch brew, I had to get it when I saw it on tap.

Serving type: on-tap

06-09-2011 02:25:02 | More by MadCat
Photo of Airyk12


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

Pours a deep brown, with a big light brown head that does not go away.

Strong smell of roasted malts with notes of some sweetness and a hint of spice.

Taste follows the nose, with lots of roasted malts up front and a sweet backbone. Aftertaste of roasted cocoa flavor.

Smooth, but decently carbonated. Medium-heavy body.

A solid RIS, which I admit is not my favorite style. Still, this beer has tons of character and flavor to keep things interesting.

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2011 21:08:27 | More by Airyk12
Photo of AllAboutTheTaste


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

This will be my first BA review. In reviewing this beer, I tried to dutifully follow the guides and process so that I could write a useful, accurate, and objective-as-possible review.

Appearance - Poured a solid opaque black color with a small dark/tan head. Did not pour with a thicker, creamy head which left me disappointed (Would like to try this on tap)

Smell - A few things that stood out in my notes: dark chocolate, hints of coffee, and alcohol which was not masked as well as I would have liked (I might have poured too cold)

Taste - A hearty mix of chocolate and malt flavors and a touch of bitterness

Mouthfeel - Smooth and creamy, not too robust and not too watery

Overall - A distinct taste that's affordable and available; a great introduction to RIS that I will definitely revisit!

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2011 15:54:38 | More by AllAboutTheTaste
Photo of jmdrpi


4.03/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz short bottle, no date.

black, with 1/4" khaki colored head. aroma is roasty, but with strong hops underneath. tastes of toasted marshmallow, roasted malt, with hop finish. medium body, low carbonation.

overall, definitely a solid imperial stout, with the slight twist of a strong hop presence.

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2011 02:31:52 | More by jmdrpi
Photo of rowingbrewer


4.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours nearly pitch black with a 1 finger tan head. the smell is roasted malt and cocoa. the taste follws suit with a wonderful hints of dark chocolate and a good roasted malt profile. the mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with appropriate carbonation to style. overall this beer is by far the best deal when price and availability are taken into account for a russian imperial stout.

Serving type: bottle

06-06-2011 18:19:52 | More by rowingbrewer
Photo of Engineerbob

New Mexico

4.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours thick and slightly cloying. Large butterscotch head that quickly collapses to form a thin, well retained head.

Appearance is thick and deepest black. The nose is heavy, with malt, marmite, leather, chocolate lightly roasted coffee and mild tobacco.

Taste is Very slightly sweet on the tip of tongue, but immediately overwhelmed by tarry, burnt chocolate and bitter coffee. Great aromas on the palate of bitumen and feintest hint of soy sauce.

Mouthfeel is round, full, soft and caressing. Long finish of bitter marmite, and a little meaty.

A wonderful example of IRS. Top value!

Serving type: bottle

06-06-2011 04:21:13 | More by Engineerbob
Photo of OttoPeeWee


3.98/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very good stout. Probably a notch below my favorite Guiness Foreign Extra Stout. The look is black with brown head that dissapates. Smells like dark chocolate, cigar and toasted bread. The taste is thick and similar to the smell-dark chocolate tobacco, but with a nice hop bitterness that is very balanced.

Serving type: bottle

06-05-2011 03:30:47 | More by OttoPeeWee
Photo of ferrari29


4.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beer poured from bottle into Pint glass

A - Beer poured with a two+ dark beige colored foam; frothy and immediately latched onto every piece of glass it could; dark brown, black colored body; no visible carbonation; appears very viscous at first glance, but is more fluid that originally perceived

S - Deep roasted malt scents; licorice jelly beans; subtle hints of cinnamon and ginger; refreshing and clean; chocolate; smoked malt scents; some coffee; scents of coffee come out the nose after a couple of sips, retro-olfaction, really the first experience with this after drinking heavily

T - Espresso/deep coffee notes; roasted malt and chocolaty; some bitterness in the aftertaste, but touch of dark chocolate in the front of the palate; dark fruit and bitter dark chocolate taste; coffee notes come coat the mucus in my throat

M - Slightly silky, liquidly toward the back-end of the mouth; not much bubbly; expected more frothiness; goes down rather quick; bitter hops rattle the sides of the tongue a bit

D - Good drink, makes a fantastic RIS; can't go wrong with this one; North Coast is definitely a leader in the field of micro brewing; deservedly so

Serving type: bottle

06-04-2011 23:04:20 | More by ferrari29
Photo of sirdillon


4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours black with quite a bit of carbonation. Big frothy(!) light tan head that sticks around pretty well. Leaves a beautiful dark lacing around the glass as I sip. Good stuff.

S- Like if you made a hop tea in a dark chocolate mocha. Except not much coffee. This is one of my favorite smelling beers out there, definitely one of a kind. Pine, dank marijuana, roasted barley, dark chocolate and a bit of alcohol heat are all there. Not much sweetness to be found. The alcohol is a bit prominent, but it's a fair trade off for a walk through the marijuana chocolate forest that is Old Rasputin.

T- Lots of hops and lots of deeply roasted coffee flavors. Finishes with a sensation of hop resin and coffee. Not much sweetness to be found, but very drinkable. There's some alcohol in the taste, but it's not too unpleasant.

M- This may be the weak aspect of this beer. I'd say it has a bit too much carbonation for an imperial stout, and has a somewhat light mouthfeel because of that. However, this is infinitely more drinkable than most imperial stouts because of this as well. Lots of hop resins coat the mouth, leaving a bit of a bitter aftertaste. Not cloying or syrupy in the least.

O- By far the best beer for the money that I've found thus far. Has a very distinctive and refined taste and smell. It's not perfect, but this is one of my favorite beers, and in my opinion it deserves great affection.

Serving type: bottle

06-04-2011 05:31:07 | More by sirdillon
Photo of ADZA


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

Definately one brew thats been on my list for a little bit and finally get to knock it off and it pours a dark as night black hue with beautiful carbonation that leaves behind a two finger creamy coffee laced head and heaps of lacing,the smell is oak,strong black liquorice,strong mocha malts and dark fruity hops,it has a lucious creamy full bodied well carbonated mouthfeel and starts off with tastes of creamy cappicino,bitter mocha,dark bitter belgian chocolate and finished with a dark fruity hoppy bitterness that really warms you up and the alcohol is really only sensed with the finishing warmness and on a cold night like tonight in the hills its truly appreciated the only downfall from tasting this is that i dont have another one therefore the next brew has alot to top cheers.

Serving type: bottle

06-03-2011 12:52:54 | More by ADZA
Photo of shangwang


4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my DFH snifter. No date on the bottle that I can find.

This was the first time I've tried anything brewed by Lost Coast. After this experience, I will be looking for more.

Old Rasputin was a deep brown-black color, and poured with over a finger of thick chocolate milk head. It left heavy lacing on the glass and the head stuck around for quite a long while. It had a great smell- roasted coffee, honey, and chocolate were all present. The taste was ridiculously complex. It started with chocolate bitterness, roasted malt, and earthy wood, but then at the back end of the taste there was an intense sweetness that matched the honey and chocolate smells. In my experience sweetness typically precedes bitterness, but this beer was quite the opposite, which I really enjoyed. There was some lingering bitterness the whole way through the finish, but nothing unpleasant. Mouthfeel was creamy, thick, and chewy.

Wow. This is a heavy hitter- the intense tastes and a heavy mouthfeel make for a beer I typically would only want one of, but I found myself desiring more after I finished the 12oz bottle. Very complex, but tasty. Definitely will be looking forward to having this one again, as well as some other offerings from Lost Coast.

Serving type: bottle

06-03-2011 01:23:47 | More by shangwang
Photo of Avantyawn

New York

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

A: Deep brown black, nice thick brown head. Looks typical of the style

S: Cream, chocolate, grains, smells much like a Cafe Latte. Slight eggy sulfur scent.

T: Creamy smooth balanced chocolaty malty RIS. Slightly sour bitterness.

M: Mouthfeel is good but a tad thin for my taste for the style.

O: Overall, this is a wonderful yearly RIS. Not much to say about this other than it's really very tasty and easy to obtain. Well done. If only the mouthfeel were a bit thicker this would be nearly perfect.

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2011 18:53:03 | More by Avantyawn
Photo of mattjv


4.72/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Pours pitch black, looks like an eclipse held up to a bright light. Frothy and robust 2 finger tan head.

S-Sweet malty backbone, accented by many other aromas. Roasted coffee, sweet chocolate, and dark fruit are all present. Solvent alcohol presence lingers in the background.

T-Starts off with thick malt presence, semi-sweet chocolate and nutty flavors. Not as sweet as the aroma hinted at. Roasted malts quickly come in strong with assertive coffee and smoky
bitterness. Herbal hops on the finish with another round of bitterness. Mild alcohol spice and warmth, for 9% it is kept very well in check. Aftertaste is smoky and slightly dry.

M- Assertive carbonation, prickly on the tongue. Thick and silky smooth mouthfeel, drinks similar to an oatmeal stout.

O-A great imperial stout, satisfying on every measure. Tons of flavor without anything overwhelming, highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2011 04:06:57 | More by mattjv
Photo of ElderRasputin


4.72/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Got this at whole foods on my way home from work the other night. Came in a 4 pack of 12 ounce bottles with paper labeling.

T: Tastes of dark chocolate and coffee with a little bit of raisin mixed with a malty complex aftertaste that finishes slighty bitter but smooth.

S: Strong brewed dark coffee with a little bit of chocolate and burnt oak. Has a sharpness to it of alcohol and slight fruitiness.

A: Very dark almost pure black in body with beige carbonation that comes up through the glass to form a tan two finger head. The had retains very nicely.

M: Mouthfeel is creamy smooth that is also heavy with sharp medium carbonation.

O: overall is a very complex and heavy style stout that I think does justice to russian imperial stout. one my most favorite beers and I will be buying this regularly.

Serving type: bottle

05-30-2011 02:52:11 | More by ElderRasputin
Photo of MikeM40


4.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into a DFH Signature glass from a 12oz bottle. This beer pours black with a large lingering tan head that leaves lots of lacing. Noticeable aromas of roasted malt,chocolate,coffee,cherries,and anise rise from the glass. Strong roasted flavors,coffee,dark chocolate,with hints of dark fruits and plums. This beer also has a deep bitter component with a rich character. The only real knock on this beer is that the mouthfeel was a bit thin for an Imperial stout,if it was more viscous it would be an A+ beer to me. Any alcohol flavor is well hidden among the well balanced complexities and the great bitter coffee/licorice finish.

Serving type: bottle

05-28-2011 16:25:09 | More by MikeM40
Photo of SubpoenaDeuces


3.95/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Old rasputin

A: murky black with tan head foamy with lacing no light passes through, pretty solid example of the style

S: sweet raisin and dates with chocolate on the nose, some drying oak but not similar to an oak aged beer, if that even makes sense.

T: taste is chocolate with bittering hopiness, nice malty balance, standard coating, it is the Mario of the Kart racing world. Not exceptional but no complaints to articulate, just standard.

M: The mouthfeel its pretty impressive for such a widely distributed stout, nice coating and balance.

D: This is a well done stout, maybe its sheer availablity has prejudiced me but I dont feel that it is amazing. I wouldnt be able to have this consistently but it is a good occasional treat, the maltiness is good but just offers too much filling.

Narrative: NOBODY BUT NO BODY KICKS OLD RAZZIE OUT OF THE ROLLER RINK. Ok, keep your cool, you know that you are a smoothe debonaire guy, but how can those girls fail to see your individual aplomb and flair? It just isnt right! You have your velvet chocolate coat, your smoothe ways, your bitter discountenance but they all seem to write you off for guys in Pele Pele Jeans and southpole shirts. Where did you go wrong? Maybe it was the fencing lessons, maybe it was talking to every girl in the roller rink. Razzie you spread yourself too thin. How could I have been so stupid? Well, there's only one thing these size 11's needs and thats a sick game of redlight green light. Time to narrow the scope and impart some chocolately velvety goodness to the masses.

Serving type: bottle

05-27-2011 08:13:04 | More by SubpoenaDeuces
Photo of bdo894


4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a super dark chocolate color, almost like black coffee. Really cool looking. Very little head.
Smelled chocolatey and grainy, like whole wheat bread.
Tastes delish, chocolate and coke with a touch of hops. Can barely taste the high APV.
Smooth mouthfeel with a clean finish. Goes down real easy.
Overall an awesome beer, especially for something with such high alcohol. I'm loving the darker beers in general nowadays.

Serving type: bottle

05-26-2011 19:30:40 | More by bdo894
Photo of HuskyinPDX


3.95/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a tulip glass.

A - Motor Oil deep brown with a 2-finger tan head. Some lacing and retention, but minor.

S - Coffee and wheat.

T - Coffee and Chocolate.

D - Oily, but mild.

O - Not much to go with here. Age this and enjoy!

Serving type: bottle

05-26-2011 07:32:43 | More by HuskyinPDX
Photo of Jinholic


4.72/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Jet black body 1 finger of mocha head didn't get a lot of lacing but it was thick.

Smell - Coffee and chocolate big up front with some dark fruit in the back maybe plum.

Taste - Same as the smell but oh so nice, its a great blend of coffee and chocolate malts. The abv in this just doesn't come out in the taste till it warms a bit and even then its only a warming feeling going down.

Mouthfeel - Silky and smooth not dry at all for 9% either. Full body stout thats creamy all the way down.

Overall - One of the best stouts I've ever had I wish more stouts tasted like this. Big props to the brewery on this I haven't liked a stout this much since SS oatmeal stout. That said go grab one and see for yourself.

Serving type: bottle

05-26-2011 02:22:58 | More by Jinholic
Photo of aval89


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

12oz bottle poured into Stone IRS glass

a: thick motor oil black! nice 2 fingers worth of khaki head.. only the edges of glass let through light, but very minimal..

s: espresso beans & dark cocoa.. slight nuttiness with some vanilla..liquorice.. also some faint dark fruits.. alcohol is very well hidden.

t: upfront i get a semi-sour cherry flavor.. then i get hit with the roasty coffee-like flavors.. mild earthy hops.. slight nuttiness.. hints of vanilla & dark chocolate dominate the finish for me.. also some lingering dark fruits with some earthy hops.. every sip is different.. very robust beer!

mf: thicky, chewy & silky/creamy mouthfeel.. spot on!

o: just an excellent brew! a true classic & excellent example of the style.

note: as beer warms, i get more of a red liquorice type taste..

Serving type: bottle

05-25-2011 11:29:05 | More by aval89
Photo of brendan13


3.93/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours black with a 3cm light brown head that falls away suprisingly rather quickly.
S - Coffee and bitter chocolate notes abound. Some nutty and vanilla hints.
T - Much like the smell up front; all coffee and chocolate bitter notes with some liquorice as well as slightly resinous piney notes. Bit of an alcohol edge as well.
M - Medium to full bodied, low to moderate carbonation. Quite bitter.
O - An impressive beer. But not as refined as I was expecting. Maybe a little aging will do it some favours.

Serving type: bottle

05-25-2011 10:52:19 | More by brendan13
Photo of dcloeren


4.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured an extremely dark brown with highlights of mahogany on the edges with 3 fingers of creamy khaki colored head. Produced decent, spotty lacing

Smells of rich, sweet chocolate, coffee beans with espresso notes, licorice and possibly some dark fruits. Has a slightly bitter tinge at the end.

Taste follows the nose but with a great bitter aftertaste. Burnt malt stands out more so on the tongue than in the nose.

The mouthfeel was a little too thin for what I was wanting out of this beer. Very well carbonated and a slightly drying bitter aftertaste

Overall, this was a good stout. I think with a thicker body that this beer could be amazing but what can you do? Not mad that I have 2 more in my fridge, but not dying to crack them open either

Serving type: bottle

05-24-2011 23:43:07 | More by dcloeren
Photo of beagle75


4.1/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Draft service with nitrogen propulsion at Yard House in Irvine.

A: Opaque black color with over one finger of dense and persistent beige foam head. Heavy, continuous sheeting of lace remains on the glass.

S: Generic dark roast is present, with a weak charcoal and mineral snap. No alcohol is detected.

T: Begins sweet, with concentrated roasted grain and semi-sweet Hershey's syrup. Acidity is very restrained into the middle, where a whiff of dark fruit emerges. The finish is remarkably mild for the style, slightly spirituous, with easy-going bitterness that seems as tied to the roasted barley as to earthy hops. A fine thread of dark olive brine lingers on the palate.

M: Thick viscosity, smooth and creamy on the palate, with very low carbonation.

D/O: Before imperial stouts were cool, there was North Coast's Old Rasputin. I remember the first time I tried it during Winter 2001-2002--when craft beer meant Sierra Nevada pale ale, Alaskan amber, Widmer wheat, or whatever stout I could get at the local brewpubs--and it was shocking to the senses. I may have thought that no beer should taste as this does. Now the beer endures, and it offers an honest look at how my palate has changed in a decade. Now (and especially on nitro-tap) it is a mellow and even old-fashioned take on the style, with a drinkability that is off the charts compared to its contemporaries. While some strong members of the porter-styles seem to struggle to separate roasty from smoky qualities, this is all roast and no smoke. It is chocolatey at the front-end, with a small finish that leaves room for that dessert such a beer is expected to accompany so well.

Serving type: nitro-tap

05-24-2011 23:38:53 | More by beagle75
Photo of mjhorn


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

Had this out of a bottle poured into a pint glass. First thing that stands out is the awesome look to the pour as the tan/brown head forms out the the opaque black beer. Ended up with about 2 fingers of creamy head. It fell back fairly quickly leaving a sticky lacking on the glass. The aroma was heavy with roasted malt, with hints of coffee and chocolate. Didn't catch any alcohol though from the 9% abv. Very smooth and creamy, with a nice balance of sweetness and chocolate, with bitterness from coffee and strong roasted malt flavors. Finishes cleanly with a slight lingering sweetness. While I didn't catch any in the nose, there is definitely a slightly warming alcohol present as you drink. Nothing overpowering or unpleasant though. Fairly light carbonation fits nicely with the rich full bodied beer. Overall I am impressed. One of the first true stouts I've tried and the introduction was well done. Might be setting the bar pretty high for the style

Serving type: bottle

05-24-2011 22:41:35 | More by mjhorn
Photo of Rifugium


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

First had: bottle from Total Wine, Cherry Hill, NJ

A very good stout, along the lines of Guinness' extra. Plus Rasputin is on the bottle. Pours a dark brown-black with a finger of tan head that recedes to a fine layer of lace. Heavy dark malt aroma, chocolate and coffee notes. Roasty taste of dark malts, coffee, dark chocolate, with hints of licorice, tobacco, raisins, and brown sugar. A bite of bitterness and alcohol in the finish. Smooth, strong, and a very tasty drink.

Serving type: bottle

05-22-2011 17:35:53 | More by Rifugium
Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 9,003 ratings.