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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.

9,640 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,640
Reviews: 3,349
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.23%
Wants: 288
Gots: 1,215 | FT: 38
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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 9,640 | Reviews: 3,349 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of godless1one
4.95/5  rDev +15.1%

appearance - black as night, brown uneven head

smell - molasses, chocolate, anise, coffee, and roasted malt

taste - sweet first, mixed with the anise and coffee, a drink is followed by a light bitter aftertaste which is colored by anise and chocolate primarily

mouthfeel - thick, smooth, and creamy, decent carbonation, pleasantly heavy

drinkability - I could drink these every day, but they are particularly enjoyable in the cold because of the pleasant warmth that spreads through your body as you drink (thar be alcohol!)

To date this is my favorite brew. I've yet to find a single beer/ale which compares in terms of flavor and overall awesomeness. Although this winter I will be trying the Abyss, so Rasputin's top seat my be in danger.

godless1one, Sep 04, 2010
Photo of jpro
4.58/5  rDev +6.5%

Ahhhh... drinking this lovely stout makes me long for a winter afternoon, where I can just sit on the patio, listen to the leaves rustle and sip this delicious goodness. Anyway, its still hot as balls here, but I picked some up 'cause I love the stuff.

A: Poured from the bottle into a Delirium Tremens snifter/tulip... Jet black, opaque - no light shall pass through the depths of Old Rasputin. Holding it up to light, I feel like I'm examining an 8-ball. Head is brown and somewhat frothy, but it recedes to a few islands of thin foam in the middle of the glass, leaving some sheets of slowly cascading, sparkling tan lace on the glass.

S: When I take a good whiff of Old Raspy, I get an aroma that is dominated by dark chocolate, burned malts, thick molasses and a hint of alcohol. Damn!

T: Mmmm - so tasty... Heavy dark chocolate up front - I love it. Espresso and brownie batter on the end. An impressive hop bite on the finish, but also some of that molasses / burnt sugar sweetness. Nice lingering bitterness that doesn't overpower.

M: Pretty freakin' perfect for the style, if you ask me. Close to full-bodied... a nice thickness, if you will. Good carbonation, too - it seems like a lot of RIS's are a little dead, carbo-wise - but this one has just a touch of zing that really adds another dimension. Also, not super sticky on the palate, which I appreciate.

D: May have mentioned this before, but I love this beer! I can sit back and sip it all day. Ridiculously drinkable RIS. A good one to have on a crisp afternoon... superb.

jpro, Sep 03, 2010
Photo of VaTechHopHead
4.58/5  rDev +6.5%

A - Typical RIS black, 1 finger deep brown head, non-transparent

S - Tons of roasted malt, sweet molasses, toasted nuts

T - Light sugar/molasses, coffee, nuts, candied marshmallow, very dry hops at end.

M/D - Heavy body, great carbonation, awesome flavor profile/palate transition. too easy to drink and no alcohol feel/flavor.

VaTechHopHead, Sep 02, 2010
Photo of Erish
4.47/5  rDev +4%

I poured this 12 oz. bottle into an English pint glass.

A: opaque, coffee-colored, the head is dark tan and very small, there is no cap but decent lacing.

S: coffee, molasses, caramel, chocolate, maraschino cherries, damp dark earth, nutmeg.

T: the coffee, cherries, and chocolate dominate up front, the molasses follows quickly, and the finish is deep, long, and amazing, with espresso, unsweetened dark chocolate, a woodsy hop bite, fruit wood smoke, alcohol, and a whisper of soy sauce.

M: medium to heavy bodied, silky, abundant carbonation and distinct hop bite.

D: An amazing stout. The finish lasts forever!

Erish, Sep 02, 2010
Photo of bsp77
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Snifter.

Appearance: Extremely dark brown with thin tan head and intermittent lacing.

Smell: Molasses predominately, with dark chocolate, soy sauce, coffee, alcohol and a touch of woody earthiness (even though it is not barrel-aged).

Taste: Dark chocolate, roasted barley and coffee, with a semi-burnt molasses undercurrent throughout. Ends with a bite from the burnt molasses, roasted malt and English hops.

Feel: Full body, smooth and creamy, and quite warming. A very slight chalkiness keeps it from a perfect score here.

Drinkability: While not quite the best, this is still the quintessential American-made RIS. A smooth and luxurious sipper.

bsp77, Sep 01, 2010
Photo of fastsrt
4.65/5  rDev +8.1%

12 ounce bottle to snifter

A: black, thick tan head, laces the glass

S: rich roasty, sweet, coffee,

T: Roasted malts, smooth starts off sweet and finishes in perfect balance between bitterness and alcohol. i use this beer as a basis for many beers of this style this is a grand example of of the style.

M: perfect carbonation, full body and enjoyable finish.

D: I love this brew and a 4 pack will go down in an evening. I have been drinking this one for a long time and just decided to post a review.

fastsrt, Aug 31, 2010
Photo of herman77
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%

A: Pours black with a thick, foamy tan head. Tons of sticky lacing everywhere.

S: Deep roasted malt, sweet coco, coffee and a little alcohol.

T: Bitterness and sweetness in a phenomenal balance. Long, slightly warm finish from the alcohol. Lots of roasted malt, along with rich carmel malt, molasses, coffee and bittersweet chocolate. Hop bitterness is also prevalent.

M: Fuller body with moderate, yet tight carbonation bubbles. Very smooth feeling.

D: Very drinkable for a RIS being 9% ABV. Its just so tasty and well balanced, the slightly warming of the alcohol is not a deterrent at all, if anything, it makes the drinkability better in this sort of stout. Great for the winter.

herman77, Aug 30, 2010
Photo of confer
3.83/5  rDev -10.9%

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.

confer, Aug 30, 2010
Photo of socon67
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%

Tried this at a beer sampling today.

This pours very nicely for a RIS. The smell is a very nice mocha/toffee mix. I was impressed with the taste, specifically how unlike others of the type it wasw silky smooth. I can taste a coffee and sweet blend of dark chocolate.

The drinkability of this beer is incredible. You really could have a few of these, though I didn't. Overall I'd put this up against many of the big Russian Stouts and say it would fare well. I'm curious if I kept some for a year how it would mellow.

socon67, Aug 30, 2010
Photo of deaconoflove
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%

Ap. Very dark, almost black, between Coke and motor oil. Poured hard for a modest head with good lacing.
Sm. Malt, chocolate, toasted, more chocolate.
Ta. Runs from toasted to burnt with a more chocolatey finish. Nice mild bitter finish.
Mf. Nice and thick feeling. A substantial brew.
Dr. Very nice. Goes down easy despite the high ABV and sweet thickness. A good reason to chill only one bottle at a time.

deaconoflove, Aug 29, 2010
Photo of dubinsky
4.78/5  rDev +11.2%

A - Pours jet black color with a thick, two finger, creamy burnt caramel colored head. Completely opaque.

S - I'm getting hints of dark malts, dark chocolate, and licorice.

T - The taste is amazing. Its thick, chewy and creamy. It finishes a bit bitter with a smokey undertone. The alcohol is very well hidden since i'm not feeling a warming effect, nor does it taste boozey as others RIS's have.

M - Full bodied, medium carbonation. Thick, and chewy. Almost reminds me of Ports old viscosity. Kind of like a old used motor oil that you could drink that would taste good.

D - This is a great example of this style. While the beer has a fairly high ABV of 9%, It's very easy to drink and i find myself having to remember that this is a sipper, not a gulper (even though i want to). This beer is very accessible and cheap for me and that makes it one of my absolute favorite RIS's.

dubinsky, Aug 28, 2010
Photo of jsprain1
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%

A- Pours a deep black with a nice khaki head. Massive amounts of lacing.
S- Roasted/burnt malts, alcohol, and just a hint of smokiness.
T- Chocolate up front, mollasses and coffee in the finish. A bit of smokiness. A bit of lingering alcohol and a perfect hop zing. Much like the aroma but more complex and intense.
M- Smooth and super creamy.
D- A very very good beer. Certainly one that sticks to your ribs. It would be very hard to turn one of these guys down.

jsprain1, Aug 28, 2010
Photo of gopens44
4.58/5  rDev +6.5%

A -Very nice. Dark opaque brown to black with a relatively small head that was mocha colored

S - Deep rich barley with hints of chocolate and espresso

T - Very much a nice espresso taste with roasted barley and molasses flavors in the back end. Some presence of alcohol, but not overpowering.

M - Nice even flowing carbonation. Creamy and smooth.

I'll drink this one whenever I have a chance. Just a great Imperial Stout.

gopens44, Aug 25, 2010
Photo of SuperNova777
4/5  rDev -7%

Poured from 12oz/ bottle into snifter

A:Pours a Jet Black color with a small tan head that resides leaving a decent lacing on the glass

S:Sweet chocolate, coffee, and a slight hint of hops

T:Chocolate up front with a slight tingle, followed up with some coffee and roasted malts as it leaves a nice coat of all the above on the palate

M:Solid body with mediate carbonation

D:Very easy to drink for a RIS and a good example of the style. Could defitinly take down more than one of these. If you are looking for a real treat try to pick up the 11th or 12th anniversary editions of this brew

SuperNova777, Aug 25, 2010
Photo of bagpiper2005
4.47/5  rDev +4%

Pour: Jet black with just a hint of red on the very edges when held up to the light. A huge three fingers of brown head that retained very well and left several spots of lacing on the glass.

Smell: Big, bold aroma with lots of rich chocolate malty goodness, coffee, dark fruit, molasses, floral hops, and a little bit of alcohol.

Taste: The front end starts off with a rich dark chocolate taste, some milky sweetness, coffee, dark fruit, and plenty of hops to go around. Alcohol is very well disguised for the ABV. An incredibly complex, balanced taste.

Mouthfeel: Heavy/full bodied, creamy, smooth as silk. Low carbonation.

Drinkability: Not quaffable, definitely a sipping experience. Pretty filling as well.

Final Notes: A simply amazing beer that would make for a great winter's night out by the campfire or the fireplace. Will stand up to the heartiest foods. Not for the faint of heart.

bagpiper2005, Aug 25, 2010
Photo of GallowsThief
4.03/5  rDev -6.3%

Poured out of a 12 oz. bottle into a Duvel tulip.

A - Deep coffee color with nice creamy tan head with just a small bit of lacing.

S - Nice malty smell with hints of chocolate and coffee. Has a good solid roasted smell as well.

T - Immediately get that nice roasted malt. It follows with a nice coffee taste along with subtle but good chocolate hints.

M - Creamy full bodied beer. Very little carbonation. Chewy.

D - Solid. Definitely a drinkable stout.

GallowsThief, Aug 24, 2010
Photo of oglmcdgl
4.47/5  rDev +4%

A pint on the nitro at capones. Oh boy a fing pint.

A- comes to me with three huge fingers of super dense creamy tan head that takes forever to settles leaving big sticky ring of suds. Black as all get out and not a speck of light making its way through the brew.

S- malty and sweet. Nutty and roasty. Chocolate, oatmeal, coffee, a hint of molasses and dark brown sugar.

T- deep roasted malts, espresso, and slightly burnt oatmeal. Tons of bakers chocolate and molasses. Some dark fruits and brown sugar. Hints of anise and pumpernickle bread in the back.

M- thick, chewy, viscous and syrupy. Super creamy and full bodied with that smooth nitro that just works so well with this stellar brew.

D- this is a monster of a stout yet its always super drinkable, on nitro this is a revelation. One of the best brew I've ever had on nitro.

oglmcdgl, Aug 23, 2010
Photo of caddybuyer
3.8/5  rDev -11.6%

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a snifter

A-Black as night. Faint ruby highlights when held to the light but other than that, utter blackness. Thick creamy brown head that laces nicely.

S-Have you ever been to Hershey? It smells like Old Rasputin. Coccoa nubs, roasted chicory, a hint of anise and licorice. A bit of alcohol in the background

T-The palate begins with bitterness, the roasted cocoa and chickory so present in the nose explodes onto the palate, yet, unexpectedly, here come some citrus hops, slighly out of place, yet keeping things a bit interesting. The hops follow out to the finish in a tingling and astringent manner. This is a nice and bitter RIS, but I would rate it much higher if it had a bit of sweetness to even it all out.

M-Full bodied with even carbonation. Well done.

D-I adored the anniversary stout, and like this, but it feels a bit off balance, like it needs some age to mellow out. Decent beer, but I'll steer straight for the Ten Fidy before buying another pack of this.

caddybuyer, Aug 23, 2010
Photo of GuldenBoy
4.3/5  rDev 0%

A: Rich and thick chocolate colored head with fair retention. Lacing slowly flows down the edge of the glass. The beer itself is jet black.

S: Dark roasted malt with hints of coffee and alcohol. Certainly a pleasant smell, but subtle when compared with the rich taste of this brew.

T: Just as in the aroma the dark malt dominates. Tones of chocolate and coffee with a sweet tinge that prevents an extreme bitterness that these taste comparisons would suggest. A lingering hoppy finish that reminds you of its complexity.

M: Full bodied and with just the right amount of carbonation to lend it a smooth mellow presence. Surprisingly smooth for how thick it pours.

D: Not a beer you are going to want to drink all night, nor is it intended to be. If you could only have one beer however or are looking for one to start or end a session you can't go wrong with this one.

GuldenBoy, Aug 22, 2010
Photo of FreshHawk
4.58/5  rDev +6.5%

A - Dark black with deep mahogany and ruby hues on the edges. Huge, thick, creamy, sticky, full, sandy colored head. Great retention that finally settles into a nice, full, creamy layer of lace.

S - Rich roasted malt with lots of coffee and chocolate aroma. Some dark fruit, specifically raisin. Chocolate and espresso dominate the nose though.

T - Rich roasted malt taste come out strong. Chocolate is very strong with a good amount of coffee as well. Mid sip, a good amount of hops come out as well with a nice grassy and slight citrus taste to it. Some burnt brown sugar is present. Nice earthy bitterness to it. Slight alcohol burn toward the end along with a good amount of roasted and burnt malt.

M - Full body with a good level of carbonation. Very silky and smooth feel. Very rich feel.

D - Easy to drink although it is definitely a sipper. A bit bitter, but balanced out pretty well with some of the sweeter taste (although the bitter flavors win out). Alcohol heat is a little strong though.

Notes: Very enjoyable stout. A surprising amount of hops come out. Very strong roasted and burnt malt taste. A great stout, especially given the price.

FreshHawk, Aug 22, 2010
Photo of brianjay
4.47/5  rDev +4%

Pours a syrupy body, pitch black in color and the head (which was light brown and thin) all but disappears quickly. There is a reminiscence of it in the form of a ring around the glass.

A baker's chocolate and [toasted grain or baked pie crust] smell. Overall, the aroma provides little insight into that this brew has to offer.

The taste, the most important part, is out of this world. Chocolate cake mixed with roasted dark meat. The high alcohol presence comes off as an afterthought, a nice wake up from the dessert-like nature of the beer.

Can't recommend this one enough for someone who wants a late night treat.

brianjay, Aug 22, 2010
Photo of joeland
3.73/5  rDev -13.3%

A: a thick looking black color almost a hint of purple. it has a tan one finger head that leaves a thick lacing

S: a vert sweet smell you get a choclate and hints of alchol

T: it starts with a bitter sweet taste and ends with a very dry sweet choclate taste.

M: a very thick body that sticks around for awhile with medium carbnation.

D: a very thick filling beer that i'm set with just one or two of these.

joeland, Aug 21, 2010
Photo of H1N1
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

Poured a little forcefully into a pint glass.

A- It poured black with 3 fingers of chocolate milk coloured head. Its really dark. Light doesn't get through.

S- Really malty. Coffee is most apparent. Chocolate is there too. A little fruity undertone. Kind of like black cherry. Smells dark and sweet.

T- The first thing that hits my taste buds is coffee. Very malty and full tasting. The coffee taste subsides, leaving the chocolate and some vanilla. Then comes a little hop back, which is the only trace of hops I get while drinking this. Very faint, but it balances the taste very well.

M- Thick and full. A little carbonation, but not much. I could stand to have it a bit thicker, but I still love the mouth feel.

D- very drinkable. Currently my favourite russian imperial stout. Very solid drink. Big fan.

H1N1, Aug 21, 2010
Photo of Ryan011235
4.05/5  rDev -5.8%

Poured into a snifter on 1/4/10

Pours dark brown, almost a dull crimson, settling near black. Two fingers of medium brown head that thins quite rapidly to a skim on top. Decent streaks of lace are left. Swirling revives a little foam. Lacing is ok but gets sporadic.

Moderately potent malt aromas that tend to be on the sweeter side of things. It kind of brings to mind chocolate milk & a creaminess reminiscent of hot chocolate. While the sweet aspect of the chocolate are most notable, there are subtle roasted undertones.

Tastes very similar to the nose; the only big difference being a slight hop twinge leading off. Roasted dark malts abound. Sweet throughout with creamy milk chocolate in the middle & on the finish. Hints of coffee bitterness in the back. Smooth all around.

Full bodied offering low carbonation that is smooth, allowing the flavors to take precedent. Faint lingering notes of roasted malts. Lacking is any appreciable alcohol heat.

Very good; not particularly complex but the whole seems greater than the sum of its parts, as it were. I imagine this ages well. Recommended.

Ryan011235, Aug 20, 2010
Photo of lou50rp
4.68/5  rDev +8.8%

Has a very dark, almost black color with a nice head of khaki, which lasts.
Smell is of dark chocolate and black cherries.
Taste is as promised by the smell. No alcohol taste and little bitterness.
Feels really good in the mouth, thick and creamy.
Very drinkable beer even with the 9.0 ABV. One of my favorite beers at any time.

lou50rp, Aug 19, 2010
Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 9,640 ratings.