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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.

9,944 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,944
Reviews: 3,364
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.23%
Wants: 305
Gots: 1,346 | FT: 43
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
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout Alström Bros
Ratings: 9,944 | Reviews: 3,364 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rwf08
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle in a tremens glass.

A: Dark, no light shines through. tight head on the edge head dissipates quickly.

S: Roasty, some alcohol, burnt sugar, and dark chocolate.

T: Same as above with a nice warming on the finish.

M: medium body, not very viscous, and dry on the finish.

D: For the style I say very drinkable. This is a sipping beer to be enjoyed over a period of time longer than a commercial break. I could sip on this all night as long as I had food.

Overall I call this a benchmark for RIS. There are better ones out there with other flavors, and techniques added but as far as a standard I'd say this is your beer. Drink this and enjoy some fondue with apples and sausage.

rwf08, Feb 11, 2010
Photo of MOB210SA
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Regular pour resulted a single finger of deep cocoa brown head that retains great and stays a full even sheet atop. Eventally fading to a good ring. A menacing deep black in color. Almost impossible to see light through, besides when held up and peering through the top.

Absolutely delicious waves of fresh roasted coffee beans, chocolate and roasted malts. A sweet almost fruit covered chocolate, like chocolate covered strawberries is minor. Cocoa, light nuttiness. Hops are there. Similar in smell to a chocolate coffee desert. Absolutly great.

Amazing. Old Rasputin is an instant favorite. This is hands down one of the best IRS I have ever had. Just loads of chocolate deliciousness. Great chocolate covered coffee beans. Has almost a barrel aged flavor. Nice hoppy, coffee bean finish. So much complex dark flavors. Its all balanced really nicely.

Full bodied, really thick and almost syrupy. Super rich and delicious. Its so smooth and drinkable though. This beer is like an amazing desert. If you like stouts, there is no way you should ever pass this up.

MOB210SA, Feb 11, 2010
Photo of BlackBearForge
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed 12-25-2007

Old Rasputin pours a deep black with amber glints around the edges, a huge cocoa colored head builds leaving loads of sticky lacing.

The aroma is rich malty chocolate with a touch of licorice and nice floral hops.

The taste profile is dense and powerful, huge malts flavored of dark chocolate, a touch of licorice, very hoppy with a clean bitter finish. Alcohol is felt as a pleasing warmth and a mild aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is medium to heavy, chewy and creamy with fine light carbonation.

A very good RIS and a great bargain in an RIS to boot. Highly recomended!

BlackBearForge, Feb 10, 2010
Photo of xanok
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It's been a while since I've had an Old Man Raspy. 12oz bottle poured into my favorite Stone snifter.

A-Like most stouts, jet black. Head is a dark tan that doesn't go away easily. Lacing is very nice.

S-Caught a whiff of dark fruit up front which was more prominent than previous times I've had this beer. The usual chocolate and roasted malts follow.

T-The taste follows the smell. Dark fruits first, followed by chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, and some whiskey. Nice warming feeling as it goes down.

M-Pretty full bodied, even for something this smooth. A bit on the heavier side carbonation-wise compared to other RIS's I've been drinking lately.

D-Smooth as mentioned, but not as smooth as other RIS's. The high abv isn't too noticeable, but you'll get that buzz quickly.

What more can be said about Old Raspy, a beer that has over 2000 reviews now? It's a classic RIS, and probably the best RIS for the price. Cannot beat $8.59 for a 4 pack.

xanok, Feb 09, 2010
Photo of backfat
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

NEVER SAY DIE! the guy behind the counter practically told me old rasputin's life story when buying this. very entertaining. North coast and Indiana broke up momentarily which sucked for about six months, but things are back up again i can enjoy the old rasp and red seal year round again. Pours opaque black sabbath, dear lord. one finger sand colored head with fantastic lacing. smells sexy, potent, and strong, like perfection. Heavenly nutmeg, coffee, candy, and love. The mouthfeel is the best part. creamy and delicious. very very drinkable for only 8.99 a four pack.

backfat, Feb 09, 2010
Photo of BillyBoysPie
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From a bottle into a snifter.

Pours a very dark black with little ruby notes poking around on the edges. The way I prefer RIS beers - the pitch black ones tend to be a little too "much" - past ideal, perhaps. I got an inch and half of very toasty colored foam that never dissipated completely - which is interesting for the style and ABV. Lots of sticky lacing all over the glass.

Malty, malty, malty. As I told my mom, this is one malty monster. Yum. Rich chocolate and prunes on the nose. Some coffee is coming through as well, dark roasted flavors as well. Nice.

I'm very pleased with this beer - the North Coast stuff is hard to get where I live, and their reputation precedes it. For good reason. Mostly dense coffee flavors - black roast, mild toasted - and some chocolate on the finish. Little hints of prunes that comes out as it warms - and I want to say there's a tiny hint of cinnamon, but that could just be some of the warm toast that makes me think of cinnamon toast... There's a very clean finish, but the flavors linger for a significant amount of time. Well balanced beer with great flavor development.

Here's the cool part. I love the carbonation in this beer. It brings to mind the idea of eating toast because of the crispness, but also makes this beer slightly lighter in body than many RIS beers. I guess you could argue it's slightly out of style - but, hell, it makes it so good. A beer this big that makes your mouth feel refreshed. Yes.

Great beer. I want more. More ice cream, too!

BillyBoysPie, Feb 08, 2010
Photo of jt31914
4.55/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: 1 finger head dark black with a typical stout appearance looks delicious

S: Burnt coffee and cream with hints of chocolate in it as well.

T: Taste is similar to the smell; very creamy with a drier finish. Some coffee and lots of chocolate in the taste.

M/D: Pretty drinkable stout with a very smooth mouthfeel - super creamy.

jt31914, Feb 08, 2010
Photo of MikeB20
3.95/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

P: 12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Pours black with almost no translucenty even when held to the light. I nice two finger light brown head with good retention. Lacing is good and sticks all the way down the glass. A really good looking stout.

S: I get a touch of fruit and hops up front which I wasn't expecting at all. Then a bit of roasted malt as well as coffee. I was expecting more however I'm glad there's not a lot of alcohol on the nose, which can be an issue with high ABV stouts.

T: Very nice, some bitter hop and roasted malt flavor that finishes a touch sweet. You also get a hit of alcohol at the end. Not overpowering at all.

M: It fills your mouth and goes down smooth. I would have liked a thicker taste but it's not bad. Carbonation is on the low side and works well.

D: I like this beer but the higher ABV would probably keep me from having more than a few at a time. I could see this one going well with a nice steak dinner.

MikeB20, Feb 06, 2010
Photo of TCgoalie
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a thick midnight with slightly tan head upon rigorous pour. The head quickly dissipated to form at the edge of the glass.

I smell roasted grains and bready sweet caramel. Add a touch of whiskey, and the smell is complete.

The creaminess of this beer is excellent. The first taste brings about a slight sour rasin taste followed by roasted barley molasses mixed with whiskey sweetness. The aftertaste lingers burnt barley and mild hops.

I love the creaminess of the beer and the stickiness. It takes a few tongue whisks around the mouth to get rid of the residue.

This beer is for the sip not the chug. Enjoy one of these and move on to something else. Two would be too much flavor.

TCgoalie, Feb 06, 2010
Photo of Hojaminbag
4.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Old Rasputin has a body that is very dark brown with hints of ruby around the edges. The head is a light brown behemoth. Three fingers in height, super creamy, great retention, all of which ends in thick, sticky lacing on the side of my glass.

The aroma is nice; bitter chocolate, some roasted scents, a touch of coffee. Maybe a bit of dark fruit and some heat from the alcohol also.

The flavor is sweeter than I expected, leading off with flavors of molasses and chocolate. Old Rasputin is packed with chocolate actually. The malts have also been roasted with a vengeance, making the roasted flavors pop up here and there. Underneath those flavors are a touch of fruitiness, coffee, anise and a bit of alcohol induced warmth that tingles the back of your nose. The finish has a pretty liberal dose of bitter hops, and the hops are really the flavor that hangs around in the after taste.

The body is big, thick, creamy, and has just the right amount of carbonation. Overall, Old Rasputin has a great mouthfeel.

Old Rasputin disappeared from my glass much more quickly than a stout this big should, which qualifies it as dangerously drinkable.

Hojaminbag, Feb 05, 2010
Photo of ocmpoma
4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A- pours out a dark black with a thick, tan head that sticks around a bit and leaves plenty of lacing.

S- not a lot of aroma, but there's definitely chocolate, caramel, and toffee in there, all with a distinct roasted character.

T- delicious. Bitter, roasted nuts and toffee with hints of coffee, the back of my palate really enjoys this beer. Taste is long and lingering.

M- great mouthfeel, too. Not too heavy, but certainly an in-your-face, up front feeling. It's almost chewy, but in a very good way.

D- drinkable, yes, but not excessively so. I've had RISs that were smoother; Old Rasputin's mouthfeel and taste make me rather savour this one. Not a session beer for me, but one of my favorites.

ocmpoma, Feb 04, 2010
Photo of CharlatanSin
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Very much looking forward to trying it. I'm on a real RIS kick right now, and this is supposed to be one of the best. Glad to buy a bottle. This beautiful beer pours a jet black, with a perfect half inch smooth tan head. It leaves wave after wave of lacing. Close to perfect.

The smell is not at all unpleasant, just a little...missing. I pick up some chocolate malt, and some toasted espresso; the expected smells. But it's a fishing expedition. This is the one area where the beer doesn't stand up to some of its colleagues. The taste, however, is damn good. Tastes like a chocolate covered roasted espresso bean. There's a nice, roasted, astringent bitterness. The alcohol is present, but it's subdued and complementary.

Rasputin is super smooth, creamy, and incredibly thick. You're almost chewing it. The carbonation is a tad high for the style, unfortunately, which stops it from being perfect. Still, easily one of the most, if not THE most drinkable RIS I've sampled. I'll certainly be conferring with the old Russian mystic again.

CharlatanSin, Feb 03, 2010
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...

hops1337, Feb 02, 2010
Photo of HumulusLupuLust
4.47/5  rDev +4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: hm, a R.I.S.... it's black. espresso-crema brown head, some lacing.

Smell: smokey, roasted malts; raw cocoa nibs, slight alcohol, detergent/soap, peat, caramel, rose petals, some oats, charred "something"

Taste: nice carbonation, crisp on the tip of the tongue, unsweetened cocoa nibs, soggy mash/oats, chalky-nutty mouthfeel, sediment residue on tongue like espresso, powdery on the sides of the tongue, dry finish, roasted malts on exhale.

One of the R.I.S. that i get excited about seeing in my glass... or rather, not:)

HumulusLupuLust, Feb 02, 2010
Photo of snpub540
4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep brown almost black hue. pretty much motor oil in color with a brown head. Leaves very little lacing on the glass.

Smells much like dark fruits, some brown sugar, and coffee. Also some caramel and toffee notes.

Taste was very much coffee and chocolate. Alot of smokiness in there and some oak in the finish. Very delicious.

Mouthfeel was slightly syrupy and did a good job of coating the palate. Drinkability was good as the alcohol is subdued but it creeps up on you.

snpub540, Feb 02, 2010
Photo of IAmNinjor
4.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

In a word, this beer is very very full. The taste, mouthfeel, color, alcohol - all very full.

I liked the pour a lot, and the color of the head against the almost black liquid made the bubbles sparkle against the glass after every drink.

The smell wasn't very strong, but was good.

The taste was great. Very rich and solid. You could taste the alcohol, but not in a bad way. This was really an ideal beer to take slow and enjoy on a cold day.

Overall a very good beer, but not for the faint of heart. Here's a full review:


IAmNinjor, Jan 31, 2010
Photo of r0nyn
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Bottled in '09.

Looks thick and substantial right out of the bottle, inky blackness that obscures all light. A straight pour produces a thick brownish head that leaves a lot of lacing and never really dissipates. Lots of barley and malt in the smell, along with a very, very distinct aroma of dark chocolate. Quite enticing.

Big malty kick right off the start, followed by the chocolate flavoring that was a big part of the smell. Transitions into a slight bitterness, but not as potent as compared to other Russian Imperial Stouts I've had. Finishes off with a tempered alcoholic twinge, not too overpowering, but it lingers well enough into the aftertaste to let you know it's there. Mouthfeel is full and weighty on the tongue, creamy and nice. Not a lot of carbonation, which suits me just fine.

Drinkability is great for a beer of this type. I could easily have a couple more, provided I have an entire night to drink it in. The alcohol is masked well enough and the beer itself is so tasty that it'd be easy to just keep going. This is quite a tasty brew, something I look forward to having again.

r0nyn, Jan 29, 2010
Photo of noduckla
3.88/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - nice dark color, did not pour with a great head, but was pouring from a really cold bottle.

S - not inky black, but nice and chocolaty with a hint of coffee

T - tasted great, not too bitter, lingering chocolaty aftertaste

M - good carbonation, well balanced without a strong aftertaste

D - I could drink a couple of these back to back to back easily. It is a good stout that does not overpower the palate with a nice chocolaty taste.

noduckla, Jan 28, 2010
Photo of BigBigPickle
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What a beer!!!

Sitting at the bar in Yia Yia's - Lincoln, Nebraska. A dark night wet with rain and melting snow. And this place, a holy beacon for a traveler stranded in Lincoln ...

But I digress. The first beer I ordered was Old Rasputin. Not sure why I haven't picked this up yet. I truthfully was unaware it was so easy to find in my hometown, Chicago.

A beautiful pour - dark chocolate with a toasty tan topper. A gorgeous beer, smelling strongly of chocolate with a hints of coffee and fruit esters.

The first sip is eye-opening as this is a big beer wit great coffee and enormous chocolate notes right up front. It also possesses an amazing hoppy front and a velvety smooth finish. I kid you not, this is so thick and full it tastes like dirt would taste if dirt tasted good.

Drink up my friends, this is a beer to fill your fridge, share with friends, and cherish until it is no longer with us.

BigBigPickle, Jan 28, 2010
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.

teovaldi, Jan 27, 2010
Photo of BeerNemesis
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Old Rasputin 2009 vintage

a - very dark, thick brown almost black, beautiful copper head

s - malt, walnuts, coffee, caramel, dark chocolate, some fruit and a lot of hops presence.

t - Very delicious and thick. Tastes like espresso, dark chocolate, and a tinge of fruit. Strong alcohol presence. Very warm, inviting, powerful and complex taste.

m - thick and creamy, medium carbonation, small head retention, great lacing.

d - one or two max, any more and it's taste overload.

Raspy's the quintessential Russian Imperial stout. It's also easy to come by which is a plus. I had this with porterhouse steak, which was delicious to say the least.

BeerNemesis, Jan 26, 2010
Photo of cassanoj
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip glass. Wesley Snipes black. A beautiful bronze head that glimmers and cascades across the surface. A lot of lacing. I don't know if I was just messed up from the HopSlam I just drank, but this Old Raspy looked simply magical.

Smells of rich malt, coffee, nuts, alcohol and chocoLOT, I mean a lot. Also a nice fruit and hop presence that flares the nostrils.

Deeee-licious! Perfect balance of the espresso, cocoa and alcohol. Some mocha and dark fruits - just the lightest touch. Malty, warm, roasted, indulgent, sweet and bitter - Old Rasputin hits on all cylinders.

Medium to full bodied, moderate amount of carbonation.

Old Rasputin is my quintessential Russian Imperial Stout. It defines the style and does it with flying colors. Not to mention at 3-4 dollars a pop and widely available, does it get more well-rounded than Raspy? I don't think so.

cassanoj, Jan 25, 2010
Photo of satowns
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasted blind with 13 other imperial stouts.

pours black with a very dark brown head.

Molasses, chocolate and roasted malt invigorate the olfactory.

wonderful hop flavors and a roasty bitterness balance a nice alcohol warmth.

big chewy body.

a VERY enjoyable beer. one of the top picks for the night.

satowns, Jan 24, 2010
Photo of feelmefoam
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Old Raspy pours a dark, opaque black color with no visibility through it at all, even when held up to the light. This does put up a two finger mocha colored head covered in pockmarked foam that leaves giant rings of sticky lacing all around the glass.

Dark, slightly bitter chocolate is evident in the nose. It surrounds the other aromas of dark roasted barley malts and earthy hoppiness, as well as some coffee.

Bittersweet chocolate, bitter and earthy hops, a bit of black coffee, and a smoky, toasty malt flavor makes this quite an interesting taste experience. A little sweet up front with a drying, almost nutty bitterness in the finish. Definitely big on flavor.

The mouthfeel is very good, just what I like for a Russian Imperial Stout. Big, thick, creamy, but this one throws in that drying finish to make it a little extra special. Has very little carbonation, but it still hides the 9% ABV pretty well. Very well done.

Overall, this is a solid, flavorful RIS that not only brings good looks to the table, it has the flavor to back it up. The drinkability takes a slight hit because of the 9%, but other than that this is a damn tasty stout that is easy to appreciate.

feelmefoam, Jan 23, 2010
Photo of mickstepp
5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Just fabulous. Absolutely fabulous. It's pretty. It's tasty. It smells good. If it could walk and talk and have sex with me, I'd marry it. Rasputin and Storm King are my winter Stout staples. An almost perfectly balanced Stout. Just dry and hoppy enough and sweet and malty enough at the same time. Velvety on the tongue without being cloying and viscous. I love this beer!

mickstepp, Jan 23, 2010
Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 9,944 ratings.