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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.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

10,355 Ratings
THE BROS
98
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 10,355
Reviews: 3,396
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.47%
Wants: 352
Gots: 1,552 | 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: 10,355 | Reviews: 3,396 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Allpe45
3.7/5  rDev -14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

from a 12oz bottle, no freshness/bottled date that I can find

The room is dark, but this appears fairly black with a short but sturdy head, and a bit of lacing.

Hop forward in the nose, with plenty of roasted malt and barley, and a bit of alcohol.

Sweet roasted malt up front with faint mocha to back it up. herbal tea-like hops in the finish along with some alcohol burn.

Medium-high bodied with low but noticeable carbonation. Somewhat creamy but not over the top.

Great value and an excellent example of the style, but not stellar.

Photo of tbrown4
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on nitro last night at Frisco Taphouse. I saw it on the short nitro list and bit. I've had this several times before, not in well over a year and never on nitro.

A - Pours beautifully black with a thick small bubble tan head that sticks through the entire tasting

S - Roasty and hop aroma

T - Coffee, dark roasted notes up front. The middle is very dry with no sweetness at all. Some bitter dark cocoa shows up towards the end. It finishes lightly bitter.

M - Medium in body, not a hint of alcohol.

O - Dangerously easy to drink. At 9% this one will sneak up on you quickly. A very enjoyable RIS that is one of the better American made versions available. Priced at $4 at Frisco, I am very happy.

Photo of dogfishandi
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

4-06-2009 - fresh bottle.

poured from 12 oz bottle at cellar temp into pint glass. pours black with some very nice looking mocha colored head. pretty nice retention. only a little bit of lacing.

on the nose, theres a lot of solvent like alcohol, chocolate, and some nice roasted malts.

big complex taste to this one. nice roasty, chocolatey malty taste in the begining that settles out to a slight hop bitterness. alcohol is a little present.

heavy mouthfeel, that for some reason, almost seems a little lighter than it actually is. very smooth for such a big beer. pretty drinkable considering the body and the ABV. but id prolly be done after 2 of these. i reccommend this to all, go get it.
4-4-4.5-4-4 = A-

4-30-2011 - about 2 years of age.

12oz. bottle pulled from my cellar that, if i remember correctly, was from the same 4 pack as the above review. purchased 4-5-2009, no bottling date, but i would imagine it has been in the bottle well over 2 years.

pours out opaque black with just a small fizzy head that pretty quickly turned into just the slightest ring. no lace, nice sticky legs however. it was a very slow pour, but there was no retention.

aromas of heavily roasted malt and dark fruits primarily. some coffee and alcohol behind.

again lots of roasted malt. also some dark fruits, rich malts, coffee, bits of cocoa, some alcohol in there, but from what i remember its subdued a bit, no longer really solvent like. hop bitterness in the finish? nice roasty choco aftertaste.

as it did 2 years ago, the mouthfeel a bit on the thin side, still chewy and big bodied, but (i hate to say it) almost a touch watery? smooth

i drank this too fast, now that the alcohol has simmered down a bit, its definatly more drinkable. it has definatly changed over time, but its not really for better or worse, i might lean just a bit towards better, but its not something i would go out of my way to age again. i do however, wish i had another right now.
3.5-4-4.5-3.5-4.5 = A-

Photo of mikeborglum
4.97/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Very dark, black as night; a nice brown rocky head with good retention. Highly roasted malt aromas and alcoholic to the nose. Smooth, potent and espresso like with a high burnt malt and hop bitterness that finishes on the sweet side to say the least. Very complex, and true to its style. I love this beer and always enjoy it at the end of hard day's night!

Photo of Lauthaha
3.58/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a beer taster.

Appearance: Beer pours a cola-like color with just a touch more consistency than cola. Head is brown, very frothy and active. As it recedes, it leaves unpredictable thick-spiderweb lacing. It remains at about one-finger.

Smell: It smells like cologne...haha, what kind I couldn't tell ya. Some mellow espresso bean flavor is the focus here, with a touch of dark chocolate hidden within a mostly milk-chocolate zone. Crisp alcohol and gentle prune hide underneath all of the above.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Beer is slightly syrupy upon entry, and brings a gentle (almost citric?) sourness. As the carbonation works its magic, the chocolate and espresso make appearances, but everything is overshadowed by a biting alcoholic presence and lack of "stout-ness." Rinses generally clean, with more of the coffee bitterness in the aftertaste.

Overall: Slightly disappointed by this beer...I'm not a fan of sour, especially in an RIS...but the sourness doesn't completely destroy the taste. I'd rather have a Stone.

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

I love this beer. 12 ounce bottle poured slowly into a pint glass, so no real head (I like it that way, hence the gentle pour). Lacing is pretty good despite the gentle pour. Breathing in the scent, one knows what imperial stouts should be. Strong malt and coffee/caramel aromas that the tastes match. A bit on the heavy side, but it IS an imperial stout and it should be. It lingers on the tongue and in the mouth with a hearty feel. Definitely a recommendable beer to anyone who likes stronger flavors and thoroughly solid beers.

Photo of hopluva1
4.03/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a snifter @ 50*

A 2 finger tan head hangs around on a black beer, looks great!
Aroma is intense roasted barley,maybe some coffee, with some resin from hops. The flavor is big roasted malt, alcohol, and hop bitterness. This is a big beer, everything about it is big. In my opinion it is heavy on the roasted barley and needs a little balance.The aroma and flavor are roasted barley, with hop bitterness, both of which are a little harsh.

This beer was meant for aging. It is waiting for its journey across the pond to mellow, like a true Russian imperial Stout.

Age it and it will be great!

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

Poured the 12oz bottle into a chalice producing an inky black body with brown half inch head which receded to a thin blanket and some islands of foam with nice lacing on sides of glass.

Great roasted coffee, malt, barley, anise nose. Very fragrant and complex.

A strong hit of hops blends with the roasted, carmelized flavors and has a creamy texture. Mineral finish yields to a slight bitter drying at the end of a moderate finish.

Very good overall and the label is cool too.

Photo of micromaniac129
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours thick and deep brown with some ruby high light at the beer edge. Deep fairly dense brown foamy head fading to surface churning. There is plenty of lacing too.
Aroma is of rich and roasted malts with sutle hop bitterness and alcohol
Taste brew with a good solid malt bill of burnt and roasted malts some coffee and dark bitter chocolates. Hop and hop bitterness tend to weave through this brew.
A good feeling beer thats tart and bitter with warming alcohol deep into the aftertaste of this brew. A good well made beer.

Photo of mountsnow1010
3.98/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Deep black, with brown head, sweet lacing. Looks delicious.
S - Dried cherries, chocolate notes and tons of coffee. Hints of alcohol and some slight yeasty notes. Got some chalky notes too?
T - Lots of coffee, touches of chocolate and a fairly bitter aftertaste.
MF - Pretty sharp, could go slightly more creamy.
O - Nice beer, especially at this price. Will have to pick up a four pack.

Photo of schlimenhaumer
3.83/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass at low altitude.

A: Pours opaque jet black with a formidable tan head -- nice retention. Impressive lacing as well.

S: To me, the alcohol came through most strongly. Coffee came through as well, with some hints of dark chocolate sweetness.

T: A nice mixture of coffee an alcohol up front, moving into a slightly bitter and lingering chocolaty aftertaste. The sweetness from the smell really didn't come through in the taste for me.

M: Wet and alcoholic, nothing too exciting in my opinion. I would have liked a bit more creaminess.

D: Erred a bit on the boozy side for my taste.

Photo of celticfutblclub
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter

A - a nice jet black body to this with a brown head that is about an eighth of an inch thick and quickly settles to a thin line for the remainder.

S - nice notes of malty biscuits and chocolate. nice roasty smell sits well in the back.

T - sweet maltiness up front with a good bit of hoppy bitterness hitting at the end. chocolate, bread, and coffee can all be tasted in there. such a tasty brew.

M - nicely full bodied. good carbonation levels.

O - one of my personal favorite russian imperial stouts that i have had to this day. it just seems to never get old and always seems to end up back in my fridge.

Photo of legalpete19340
5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Came pitch black in the pint. Thick and intimidating with a massive head that was so thick it seemed like frosting. This is a lacing monster covering nearly every part of the glass when I was done.

S: Shoe leather, molasses, earthy hop notes, slight bit of smoke.

T: Booze, wood, smoke, peat, burnt malt. Extreme cappuccino creaminess and coffee in the middle. More of those earthy hop notes and bittersweet baking chocolate.Ends with a burnt sweetness.

M: Perfect: thick, heavy, creamy, chewy but drinkable.

O: This is a monster! How I forgot. Dark and heavy with great burnt malt and hop profile. It excels for me in a world of syrupy RIS' that have gone over the top sweet. A welcome relief. How lucky that I can get it all the time.

Photo of StoneTSR
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Retention on this thing is amazing. Half way through the glass it still has a decent little head and the lacing covers about 85% of the opposite side of the glass. The color is pitch black with a bit of a red tint towards the bottom of glass.

S: Coffee and chocolate aromas dominate with a little hop aroma coming through.

T: Nice and chocolaty with some strong coffee notes and a solid, bitter smack of hops for the finish. This is delicious.

M: The Old Rasputin feels like you are drinking a cloud - light, fluffy and very, very easy drinking. There is nothing about this beer that makes it seem like 9%.

O: Wow. I am very pleased and impressed. I am becoming a bigger and bigger Imperial Stout fan and this is serving to continue that trend. Dynamite beer.

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

I love RIS’s. And when I saw that a 4-pack was only $10, I was definitely excited. Eager to see if this could become a nice go-to.

A: Slight brown hues, almost pitch black. Beautiful dark tan head that completely laces the glass. Quite a lot of carbonation is visible; a fair amount of bubbles stick to the side of the glass.

S: Carmel and chocolate at first, biscuity undertones follow. Nice and welcoming. The 9% ABV is completely hidden.

T: The first thing to come out is a smooth, warming, alcoholic spiciness. Sweet malts and coffee are very, very miniscule, but still there. Then, surprisingly, hops finish it off. A nice bitter finish. There are some other sweet flavors that become more apparent with each sip – chocolate and a hint of dark fruits (underlying yeast, I’m sure). Still, the prominent flavors are definitely spicy alcohol blending into bitterness. It’s a transition that goes a little too quickly for my taste. It makes this obviously well-crafted stout seem less complex than it actually is. You can tell there are many different elements in each taste, but you really have to work to seek them out from under the blanket of the biggest flavors.

M: The carbonation is one of the first things you notice in this brew. It adds a sensation that works to bring out the big spiciness of the alcohol. This may be another reason why the hops and alcohol are so prominent; the carbonation definitely beefs up these aspects.

O: This is a big beer. Its biggest elements, however, can substantially diminish its complexity. Still, a very nice RIS. I would love to have this on-tap sometime.

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

A: a deep brown almost black clour, with a big off-white head, i would say a sand colour, made of wide bubble, with good retention.

S: a nice roasted very deep but also a sweet notes, probalby from dark fruits, and some caramel malts

T: some alcohol presence, deep roasted, Some sweet notes i would say from caramel malts, and some smoky notes.

Medium-high body

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

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a pint glass

A: Pours completely black and opaque, even when held up to a bright light. There is a dark tan head with moderate retention.

S: Incredibly complex and balanced. The first thing I could smell was coffee, followed closely by chocolate and caramel. There is also an herbal smell, sort of like grass cuttings or pine. On top of all this, the beer smells distinctly fruity, like cherry and citrus.

T: The taste is less balanced than the smell; a smoky mocha is the dominant flavor. The malts also contribute their characteristic sweetness. The fruit flavors are still here, but faint compared to their smells. More hops in this than most Russian imperial stouts which do a little bit to balance the mocha.

M: There is more carbonation here than in most RISs. Moderately thick and slightly syrupy.

O: This beer has more hops and carbonation than your average RIS, making it somewhat unique, but the smell is better than the taste

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

I've been looking forward to trying this, so I'm just a little excited....

A: Pours very dark brown... even black. Nice thick, frothy, two finger head that has a nice light brown appearance. Awesome looking in the glass. Heavy lace clings to the sides as the head slowly recedes and I drink it down.

S: So nice! Dark aromas of coffee and chocolate power through strong. Grainy breads and a bit of spice present themselves and add complexity. Alcohol comes through, but is not overpowering. I really need to stop smelling this and take a sip!

T: Okay... I took my nose away so I could finally try a sip... Coffee and dark chocolate dominate at first with a warm alcohol follow. A bit more bitter on the finish than I expected, but not unpleasant. Sweet cream or vanilla notes show up also. I wasn't very impressed at first, but the longer I sip this the better it gets. Complex, dark, and powerful... Yes!

M: Thick and creamy with a dry, bitter finish. Heavy flavors may make this feel thicker than it is, but the bitterness seems to hang on the tongue a little too long.

D: Great flavors combine well for an excellent tasting brew. I couldn't drink much more than this one at a time because of the heft and alcohol. This beer got better as the time went on... very nice. I may look for another to store away for a year or so and see what I get.

Photo of smakawhat
4.53/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had on a nitro tap at Meridian pint poured into a shaker pint

Appearance is pure hot sex. Tight dark bubbles those tiny little things of microscopic nitro bliss, dark and cocoa like and super creamy in appearance. Dark walnut body with a one half finger head that will not go away. Seriously it falls like an elevator never to disappear. There is even some slight red hue just under the head. Ladies and gentleman... we have... no joke near perfection here.

First bouquet is a good spicy coffee, roast density and milk chocolate all rolled into one. Medium notes and balanced but kind of hidden not overpowering.

Then taste is WHammo! Dense DENSE chocolate on bubble consistency foam. Airy whisps of cream, killer just KILLER thick milk chocolate density DENSE, so thick bodied but not syrupy it's like a kids chocolate drink for adults. Hints of grain malt and husk, slight roast.

Overall it's a one trick kind of thing in a way and not complex but jesus it is done so well on nitro. Exceptional drinking right here this is like adult playtime right here, small children and small tastes need not apply. Pure win plain and simple!

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

The beer is pitch black with a short but thick brown head.

There are lots of deep, dark roasted aromas as well as enough alcohol to burn the nostrils just a little. Nothing sweet, nothing fruity, this thing just smells big, roasted and evil. I like it.

Definitely a big beer. All of that roast from the aroma is there but I also taste espresso, peppery spices and the alcohol warms the throat all the way down. It finishes sweeter than the aroma would suggest, but it's delicious.

This is one damned good beer.

Photo of jhughes23
4.7/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz. Bottle Poured into a 16oz. Tulip Glass

Pours a Dark Black, almost motor oil black but not quite. Starts with a nice thick mocha colored head that dissipates down to a decent thin layer on top. Laces nicely throughout.

The Aroma is definitely of dark chocolates and roasted malts and coffee. The Roasted Malts seems most prominent with a hint of vanilla.

The Flavor is very dry and bitter upfront mellowing out with a roasted chocolate and vanilla. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, but there are RIS out there that have a smoother mouthfeel. The alcohol is prominent but not as much as you would expect. Over time this will calm down and the mouthfeel will improve.

Definitely a sipper that has many more layers as it warms up.

By far in my top 5 RIS. But it has to be #1 if you factor in the Price.

I would be hard pressed to find a better best buy than this one.

Photo of Lemke10
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had a 12oz glass on tap at Hollywood Casino in Joliet, IL for $4 in Spring 2010.

Pours a very dark brown color with a good thick head of chocolate colored foam. Has a strong scent of roasted malts and hops. The taste was heavy and long lasting. I was really surprised to see some foam stick around til the very end. Definetly a must try!

Photo of d4114
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

3/30/11
A- Pitch black; 2 fingers of creamy tan

S- Big coffee notes; At first it can be a little strong but after a little you really get the complexity; A little sweetness and some alcohol

T- At the front you get a really bitter and chard flavor; The middle you get coffee or espresso with a hint of alcohol; The alcohol is masked very well; At the back you are left with a smooth, dry bitterness

M- Medium to heavy bodied; Would have thought it would have been more thick and viscous; Warms back of mouth and throat

O- Really good complex beer that you can get year round

Photo of BigE90
4.03/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a frosted pint glass, 1 finger head, good chocolate color, disappeared quickly though.

Nice and dark like a stout should be

A deep roasted almost burnt smell, swirl it around and hops come through

There is some substance here as I call it when it lingers in my mouth afterwards. A good medium body feel, some bitterness comes at the finish. Just a slight taste of chocolate and hint of the alcohol.

The finish lingers so you know you are drinking a heavier beer

Overall a very drinkable RIS. Probably would not buy again but at the same time I would not turn one down. The bitterness is the only real thing that is turning me off about it.

Photo of beerandcycling88
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

A This beer is pitch black with a 2 finger brown head with decent retention and lacing.

S The nose of the beer is pretty nice. There are notes of chocolate, roast and coffee.

T Tastes of chocolate, roasted coffee, with some pine from the hops in the finish.

M Mouthfeel is nice and creamy, very easy to drink for a Russian Imperial.

Overall this is a great beer. It might not be the best RIS but it is an excellent representation of the style and fairly easy to find at a reasonable price which makes it a great go to stout.

Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 10,355 ratings.