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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.

9,006 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,006
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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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 9,006 | Reviews: 3,316 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Kromes


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

Pours pitch black with a thick brown head that stick to the sides of the glass. Sweet chocolate roasted malt and fruit aromas. This may be gross but the smell reminded me of straight Skoal chew spit. Kind of unappetizing and I wish I hadn't have made that connection. However the flavor totally redeemed the beer and made up for the aroma. Chocolate cream and dark roast burnt coffee beans with just the right amount of slight hop bitterness at the finish. There is an unsweetened dark chocolate flavor that lingers. Incredibly tasty. Could not detect any alcohol warmth or flavor in this beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-28-2009 20:16:24 | More by Kromes
Photo of bskrtz


3.83/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12 ounce bottle to large, open challice.

A) Very dark --black. No light passes through. Good head with decent carbonation. May have more to do with the skill of the pourer

S) Burnt coffee, spices, brown sugar

T) Very complex. The burnt coffee dominates but distinct taste of dark chocolate, raisons & caramel

M) Thick, effervescent with little alcohol on the tongue

D) A very good interpretation of Russian Imperial Stout

Serving type: bottle

03-28-2009 16:58:01 | More by bskrtz
Photo of BarrytheBear


3.28/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Black and lacy, like lingerie

Emits an odd, though pleasant, bubble guminess with a smack of toffee

Paired with a sharp cheddar, I can't help but taste Bazooka Joe. Odd. Mild chocolate and Skor bars. Do they still make those?

Hides booze well. Sweet, drinkable, perplexing.

Just not a big fan of this beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2009 23:56:36 | More by BarrytheBear
Photo of carp420


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

longtime beer drinker, first time reviewer

poured into a pint glass, this liquid comes out damn near black with a brown frothy head two fingers deep that lingers on the top somewhat and laces the glass all the way down

it smells like a nice stout, immediately the roasted malts come to the nose followed by a nice coffee smell, can barely smell the boose

very good flavor to this beer, mainly near burnt malts ,lots of coffee, creamy dark chocolate incorporated with a nutty flavor, the high abv doesn't affect the flavor of of the beer

feels perfect in the mouth, not to thick, a nice big creamy beer.

not a session beer but i could drink alot more of these beers and i will

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2009 21:09:11 | More by carp420
Photo of turnblom79


4.83/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great Russian Imperial Stout flavor. I really enjoyed this one compared to other RIS because the alcohol taste was barely there unlike some others. This was very dark and thick, but I was still able to put a nice head on it when pouring. The taste was very chocolaty with nice coffee tones, and a nice smooth finish.

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2009 04:13:04 | More by turnblom79
Photo of BarrelO


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

12oz bottle poured into a goblet.

A: Black with an off-white head that quickly fades and leaves good lacing.

S: Roasted coffee, some hops, a little bit of chocolate.

T: Big time espresso-like blast of roastiness. Hops are quite a bit more noticeable than usual for the style. Also hints of bittersweet chocolate.

M: Feels creamy, but the hops dry out the mouth.

D: This has got to be the coffee-est beer I've ever had that didn't actually have coffee in it. This is also the beer that taught me the importance of the proper serving temperature. When served cold, it's a decent stout. After it's warmed up, it's one of the best beers on Earth.

Serving type: bottle

03-24-2009 03:08:56 | More by BarrelO
Photo of johnmichael712

North Carolina

4.9/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Poured out of a 12. oz bottle into a nonic glass. This beer pours an opaque mahogany color with ruby tints around the edges and it allows light through when backlit with a lamp. The dark khaki colored head starts is absolutely gargantuan in size and rises from the depths of the glass the way a nitro-bottle or nitro-can pour does. The head has a wonderfully soft, pillowy texture and takes a long time to dissipate. As I'm drinking this beer a moderate amount of lace is left clinging onto the glass for dear life.

Smell: My first sniff of the nose reminds me a lot of Victory's Storm King Russian Imperial Stout because the hops dominate the nose in a similar way, but in subsequent sniffs the aroma of bittersweet chocolate is dominant. There is also a strong roasted malt presence in the nose, and hints of coffee, molasses, and brown sugar.

Taste: This beer starts off with a wonderful chocolate and malt flavor with a hint of espresso (the usual chocolate/espresso flirtation that Imperial Stouts have) and finishes with a very light citrusy hop flavor and a good amount of alcohol warmth. I disagree entirely with those that say this beer is too hoppy, as I found the hops to be very toned down and much more subtle than Storm King. Dominated instead by intense chocolate and roasted malt flavors, this is one exceptionally delicious beer. I wish I had a better grasp of the English language to more fully describe this beer, but it doesn't really matter because only sampling this beer yourself will truly do it justice.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is where this beer truly shines, and to rate it at anything lower than a five would be criminal. My first sip took my breath away with how creamy, luxurious, silky, multiple other adjectives, this beer feels on my tongue. This silkiness is supplemented by an insanely thick and chewy body and a very light amount of carbonation that makes this beer feel more like drinking a melted chocolate bar than drinking a beer. This is definitely the best "feeling" beer I've ever drank, and if I could give it a six I would.

Drinkability: One of the most drinkable stouts out there. There isn't even a slight mention of the 9% alcohol, and the smooth, lavish mouthfeel mixed with the decadent chocolaty taste make it possible to quaff this brew all night long. At the moment I'm having a tough time imagining a more perfect night than sitting in front of a fire with a good book drinking a couple of these baddies.

Notes: At the time of my review this beer is sitting at number eighty-nine on the best of BA list just above Storm King, thus I was expecting something qualitatively similar to Storm King. Boy was I wrong. This beer is superior in every way, and is one of the best Russian Imperial Stouts out there. It definitely deserves to be higher on the best of BA list, and right now only Stone's Imperial Russian Stout seems to be the equal of this beer in the RIS category. If you ever see this beer in the store do yourself a favor a pick up more than one. You won't be disappointed.

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2009 03:32:25 | More by johnmichael712
Photo of AdmiralDiaz


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

Poured from 12oz bottle to 22oz snifter.

A: Pours jet black with a nice puffy brown head with good retention leaving nice lacing and spots clinging to the glass every time you take a sip.

S: Strong roasted malts with high amounts of alcohol with noticeable hops and coffee.

T: Big flavor. Roasted malts hit upfront turning into espresso with a bitter chocolate finish with a bit of a hop bitterness tagging along. Not as much alcohol comes out in the flavor as does the nose.

Overall: Great mouthfeel, great carbonation which helps bring out the wonderful flavor over this heavy and silky bodied stout. Very drinkable for the style, the alcohol doesn't slow down and it's not overpowering at all. Very good beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2009 02:26:55 | More by AdmiralDiaz
Photo of biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

4.8/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pitch black with hazelnut lining; my glass has become the sight of one big oil spill. The complexion is utterly unyielding - even when held directly into the light the beer refuses any highlights or transparency. This defines the word 'opaque'. The rustic toned carbonation seems selective about which parts of the top it chooses to amplify. Nevertheless, it's fairly thorough and leaves a coating of lacing that sticks like drying cement.

The nose is everything you'd ask for in an Imperial Stout (chocolate, espresso, heavy roast, molasses, black licorice) plus an extremely generous inclusion of hops. We're talking West Coast style hops - lively, spicy, tangy, fruity, acidic, green, fresh from the vine hops. Although they do interfere a little with all the dark chocolate and roast malt decadence, they also provide a level of sumptuousness of their own. This smell is divine.

Each sip is like drinking liquefied dark chocolate. Well, it's not that simple actually. It's like drinking liquefied dark chocolate that has been infused with a strong, heavy roast espresso and a farm's worth of macerated hop cones. There's a big spoonful of dark caramel, a layer of crunchy toffee crust and nibs of black licorice. Bittersweet notes resonate with increasing intensity on the finish. Surely if there is an ideal tasting Imperial Stout this must be it.

Words like "smooth" and "delicious" have been so overused in reviews that they've lost much of their meaning. That said, a beer like Old Rasputin comes along and there's no better, more appropriate adjectives to describe it. It not only rejuvenates these words, it might even redefine them. The flavours are luscious, the body is full, the textures vivid and the alcohol never to be seen. This whole thing just feels like a warm (decadently rich) blanket.

They may not all be easy to get your hands on, but there is no shortage of great Imperial Stouts. The bar for this style is set ridiculously high, arguably much higher than most other styles. Although Old Rasputin may no longer be recognized as one of the top, most decadent RIS it damn well should be. I've had my share of revered, highly sought after Imperial Stouts but I'd still claim this as one of my favourites. And probably always will.

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2009 01:07:31 | More by biegaman
Photo of sliverX

S. Georgia & S. Sandwich Isls.

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

From notes drank on 3-17-09
Poured a used motor oil like color, a mocha head that faded fast but left some lacing
Smell was deep dark roasted barley and some coffee
Taste was big roasted coffee and barley with a nice hop bitterness and alcohol presence in the finish
Mouthfeel was over carbonated and a bit to thin for my preferences but not terrible
Drinkability was good but having more than one of these would have shot me for the night...

Serving type: bottle

03-22-2009 02:30:50 | More by sliverX
Photo of JonMich13

North Carolina

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

A = Jet black with a one finger dark tan head that retreated rather quickly. Decent lacing that stuck around for the whole deal.

S = Very nice sweet fruits and chocolate. Coffee and malts also ever present. Nice balanced aroma.

T = Wonderful sweet fruit and chocolate notes to start. Warm coffee and hints of chocolate bloom in the middle, with a mild hop bitter to finish.

M = This is where I feel like this one lacks slightly. A little more thin on the palate than I would expect. I guess I was hoping for it to be a little creamier and chewy.

D = Excellent drinkability. ABV is well hidden. Could go for another right now.

All told, a great example of this style, and henceforth a staple in my fridge.

Serving type: bottle

03-21-2009 02:40:02 | More by JonMich13
Photo of Risser09


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

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter - Fridge temp - 2008

Appearance: Pours a pitch black color with absolutely no highlights. The head rises 1/2" and is light brown in color. A tiny bit of lace remains after the head recedes calmly.

Smell: Heavy malt aroma and plenty of dark fruits. Cherry, plum, apricot and raisin. There is also a sweet chocolate aroma, almost like chocolate milk.

Taste: Subtle flavors of milk chocolate, roasted malt, licorice and coffee. Slight hop addition gives some IBUs. Nice balance, but not overly complex.

Mouthfeel: Medium to heavily bodied, ample carbonation, and a lot of RIS qualities. Belly warming alcohol, ample sweetness.

Drinkability: A decent brew. I expected more based upon word of mouth, but am left wanting more complexity. At least its not cloyingly sweet.

Serving type: bottle

03-20-2009 12:01:53 | More by Risser09
Photo of jujubeast6000


2.4/5  rDev -44.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Reviewed 8/5/2008 (bottle):

Pours an inky black colored body, with a gray brown head, with some good lacing but not very lasting. Aroma has some alcohol and some dark malts, nuttiness. Malty taste and some dustiness. Somewhat hot. Some dark chocolate. Too much for me.

Serving type: bottle

03-20-2009 03:15:13 | More by jujubeast6000
Photo of EnojysAnyBeer


4.58/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A- Opaque black liquid with a big, frothy, tan head

S- Lots of roasted barley reminds me of coffee. Some complexity arises with dark fruits and hints of alcohol

T- Delicious mix of sweet malt, bitter hop, and tart yeast/alcohol characteristics. I can't find anything wrong with this beer. Perhaps it is too tasty

M- A mouth-full of chewy, full-bodied goodness

D- Drinkable enough to pair with dinner and filling enough to solo as dessert

Serving type: bottle

03-20-2009 03:06:55 | More by EnojysAnyBeer
Photo of daftafne


4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a mini tulip, it is an almost black liquid with a finger of dark tan head which is not resilient. The smell is not very strong despite being served just slightly chilled. Smells of vanilla coffee/espresso, caramel. Taste begins a bit sweet then some hop bitterness, roasted malts, coffee/espresso and finishes nice and bitter. The alcohol warmth was fairly prominent near the end of the glass as it warmed. Light carbonation and a medium to medium-heavy body. The drinkability is limited by the 9% ABV. Very good classical interpretation of the style.

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2009 23:53:28 | More by daftafne


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

A: Thick dark brown syrup. Can see reds against the light. Thick tan head that sat a while and laced beautifully.

S: Sweet roasted chocolate and coffee aroma with some earthy hops on top.

T: Bitter dark chocolate and sweet coffee malts. An earthy hoppy background and lingering bitterness and sweetness. a small taste of alcohol underneath. very well balanced.

MF: Thick syrupy drink that goes down very smooth. Leaves you snacking your lips for another.

D: This brew has everything you could hope for in an Imperial Stout. Very good.

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2009 20:20:45 | More by CHILLINDYLAN
Photo of PeprSprYoFace


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

Pours a very dark black with almost no head. Not much lacing.

Smell is great. Very pleasent roasty aroma. Slightly sweet smelling. Lots of chocolate and coffee.

Tastes just as it smells. This RIS is a little more on the roasty side of the spectrum.

Mouthfeel is good. No complaints.

Overall a heavy beer that I couldn't drink alot of but it is very tasty.

Serving type: bottle

03-16-2009 06:30:00 | More by PeprSprYoFace
Photo of delmarnate


4.65/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours almost black and with a syrupy appearance. Dark brown head that fades quickly. The smell is overpowering. You know what you are in for. The first sip is heavily bitter and smooth in feel. more bitterness in the aftertaste with a hint of coffee and chocolate. An excellent beer. Not for stout beginners, but everything that a stout lover wants and loves about the style.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2009 01:01:39 | More by delmarnate
Photo of Riccymon


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

Pours a syrupy black from the bottle with a finger of wicked, dark brown head that dissipates to a film. Right after the pour, I smell plenty of hops, but soon the smell is mostly musty and earthy. On first sip, Old Rasputin is a massive, chewy beer. Early on, I taste loads of bitter chocolate, but the finish is mostly grassy hops and a little alcohol. As this warms, however, I begin to taste coffee and some plum and apple flavors. For the style, I think drinkability is above average, because the flavor, hoppiness, and booziness are not over the top like in others I've tried.

An all-around delicious beer, and for the price, it absolutely can't be beat.

Serving type: bottle

03-13-2009 01:49:08 | More by Riccymon
Photo of brokenleadedcask


4.58/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Poured into pint glass with the usual MO of a Russian Imperial Stout, deep dark body with a tan head that disappears as it warms.

S- Sweet smelling dark roasted malts

T- Lovely burnt roast, buttery english toffee and slight hints of chocolate and coffee

M- Comfortable and velvety with a fine cigar after taste

D- Surprisingly drinkable and with the proper pacing and water intake the %9 wouldn't wreck me

Serving type: bottle

03-11-2009 23:08:52 | More by brokenleadedcask
Photo of Rainintheface


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

A: Black with some red highlights on pour. a foamy, one finger coffee head tops off this RIS

S: dark chocolate, a little coffee, light aroma of dark fruits, raisins

T: chocolate tops the list. followed by roasted malts and tobacco

M: Smooth, full body with bitterness and a dry finish

D: A great sipper I finally got around to

Serving type: bottle

03-11-2009 20:21:56 | More by Rainintheface
Photo of tigg924


4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: huge beautiful head, opaque, dark brown

Smell: complex: malt, dark chocolate, sugar, wood, some espresso

Taste: It follows the smell but with a noticeable dose of alcohol.. The sweetness is surprising...It is almost like a milk stout and then the alcoholic bite..The aftertaste alternates between the burnt taste and the sweetness

Mouthfeel: smooth, thick body, creamy, with a sweet finish, then a hit of alcohol, followed by a bitter alcoholic finish

Drinkability: A nice and complex RIS. Not my favorite in the style, but up there...I will have this again, but due to the noticeable high ABV--probaly would only have one or two in a sitting..Excellent RIS.

Serving type: bottle

03-10-2009 02:49:54 | More by tigg924
Photo of cameraready


3.98/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark brown/black color with a nice thick tan head. Has a nice lacing effect on the glass as you drink it.

S: Has a hint of mocha/chocolate but mostly you can smell the alcohol.

T: Heavy malt flavor, mild bitterness. The roasted malts really add to the flavor.

M: Medium body with no carbonation.

D: Would get more of these in the future.

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2009 04:43:35 | More by cameraready
Photo of iceball585

New York

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

A- Pitch black color, non-transparent, one finger thick tan color head that lowered slowly

S- Roasted malts, caramel, wood, slight sweetness, hint of alcohol

T- Creamy, espresso, roasted malts, sweet, smokey, hint of hops finish

M- Medium body, medium carbonation, smooth, rich, flavorful

D- Worth buying again

I always love this Russian Imperial Stout. It's probably one of my favorites in this catagory.

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2009 00:41:34 | More by iceball585
Photo of Deadstar


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

This is one of my favorite Russian Imperials for a few different reasons; it's one of the more affordable offerings in the style, it's very tasty, and while not the most over the top or out of the ordinary, it's dang solid.

I poured this out of the bottle into a snifter. The color is almost black, minus some deep amber around the outside of the glass. The head faded away quickly, leaving only a remnant of itself to float around on top of the beer.

Smell: Dark fruits, roasted malt.

Taste: Much like the smell would indicate, there's a lot of dark/dried fruit flavor here, followed up with a solid roasted malt backbone; hop bitterness was right where it needed to be.

Mouthfeel: Relatively light but slick, leaves the mouth coated between drinks. Carbonation was spot on for the style.

Drinkability: I could drink a few of these in a sitting, but I feel that the strong flavors and the higher ABV would limit me to one or two.

Solid beer, very affordable. Great stuff.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2009 22:07:08 | More by Deadstar
Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 9,006 ratings.