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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

9,662 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,662
Reviews: 3,349
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.23%
Wants: 289
Gots: 1,220 | 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
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: 9,662 | Reviews: 3,349 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jacobseyb
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A=poured a deep dark brown, almost black with a very thick (3 finger) dark brown almost golden head

S=hazelnut and chocolate, roasted malts, no alcohol odor

T=roasted malts and chocolate/cocoa flavors, really seems to be very balanced

M=good light carbonation, not tremendous thickness

D=very good and very drinkable, easily have more than 2 at a session.

jacobseyb, May 10, 2009
Photo of holycrapamoly
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I have had 3 of the four pack I bought and I really enjoy this. It pours out a dark strong coffee appearance with a nicely formed finger thick khaki brown foamy head.
The smell reminds me of wood, coffee (although that might be the suggestion of the look) and chocolate.
The taste is great. Smoothly balanced malt, hops and sweetness. This is not my favorite type of beer, but this is my favorite of this type that I have had.
Mouthfeel is as smooth as Belgian chocolate. I am amazed that the ABV is as high as it is, yet it has such a smooth character and good drinkability for this type. I usually refer to this group as the beers that eat like a meal, but Old Rasputin like its namesake could give advice on how to make a fine Russian Imperial Stout. Well done!

holycrapamoly, May 09, 2009
Photo of dasenebler
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very dark, with a medium tan head. Some lacing. Aroma was lots of roast and mapley malt, touch of coffee.

Flavor is superb, especially when you realize this isn't a super-heavy imperial stout. Lots bittersweet chocolate, roast, and hints of tanginess and wood. Deliciously malty with a well-balanced sweetness. Dark fruit. Mouthfeel is very smooth, not nearly as heavy as some imperial stouts. Carbonation is perfect, medium low. One of the most drinkable imperial stouts I've ever had, and Rasputin doesn't even skimp on the flavor.

dasenebler, May 09, 2009
Photo of AChamberlain
3.93/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into tulip glass.

A: Dark black, thick brown head. Head just sittin there, faded very slowly.

S: Roasty, chocolate. Malty.

T: Sweet malt flavor. Tons of roastiness. Delicious. Smooth sweet finish.

MF: Creamy. Thick. Silky. Perfect carbonation, not to heavy.

D: Alcohol hidden very well. Watch out it will sneak up on you. Super smooth, ultra drinkable RIS.

AChamberlain, May 08, 2009
Photo of UA8
4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours an old engine oil black with a robust and frothy brown head.

S- Heavily roasted dark malts, a touch of dark coffee, and some dried figs or dates.

T- Semi sweet roasted malts open the show. The midpalate brings dried dark fruit and a touch of coffee. Finishes big with smoky bitter malt and a touch or herbal hop.

M- Just above moderate fullness and viscosity. The carbonation is medium low.

D- Took me a bit to come around on this one but now that I have I must admit it is quite the tasty RIS. The key I believe is to get this one up to at least 50 degrees before drinking it. The flavors really start to pop once it gets warmer.

UA8, May 05, 2009
Photo of DavoleBomb
3.58/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass.

4.0 A: Used motor oil color, can't see through anything. Creamy head with average retention and lots of lacing.

3.5 S: Chocolately with hints of coffee and plenty of roasted malt. Some hop aroma too. However, aroma just isn't strong enough.

3.5 T: Big strong taste with is neither bad nor great. Bittersweet chocolate, espresso beans, and lots of roasted malt. Bitter aftertaste.

4.0 M: Medium heavy body. Right amount of carbonation, good for the style. Very smooth.

3.5 D: Not my favorite RIS, but worth a drink.

DavoleBomb, May 01, 2009
Photo of Thorpe429
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The first RIS I had as a serious craft-beer drinker. I had thought they were a little too heavy and off-putting in the past, but this one really turned me to the light. A big thank you to the local Trader Joe's for offering singles of this one.

A: Black with a brown head and some good lacing.

S: Roasted dark malts and a little bit of alcohol.

T: Good espresso flavors meld with the roasted malt. Some hops make their way in and overall it's slightly sweet.

M: Fairly thick and well-carbonation. Nice and creamy.

D: Pretty drinkable. A very, very good introduction to the style, and one I plan on offering to many other beginners.

Thorpe429, May 01, 2009
Photo of SFLpunk
3.95/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz brown glass pry-top. No freshness date, but been in my fridge for two-months.

Appearance: Rough pour produced 1/4 inch tan sudsy head. Recedes quickly, leaving spotting. Deep black with mahogony red around the edges.

Nose: Roasted malt, black coffee, toffee, a little wisp of alcohol. Smells great!

Palate: Medium-bodied with crisp bitter edge. Lots of roasted and burnt coffee bean notes, cocoa nibs, black coffee, bitter chocolate. Long to moderate finish.

Notes: Significantly less creamy than the nitro-tap experience I've gotten used to lately. A great beer, but seriously bitter and drier feeling in the bottle.

SFLpunk, Apr 30, 2009
Photo of taylorhamrick
3.9/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours very dark, but still I can see some ruby hints around the edges, may be lighter/different in color than the average RIS. The head is kind of thin (<1cm) and dense, which leaves bits of lacing down as I drink. The smell is filled with sweetness, but deep in there are dried fruits (maybe from some esters or the black patent), the roasted barley - coffee type smell, and a light nose of chocolate. I can imagine a better smell, in terms of complexity, this one is about normal, but because its so intense, the smell is very much more inviting. The taste is very complex, and includes all of the usual suspects. The first sip has this dark, overripe plum taste, almost a hint of slick dark tartness, but with a pleasant sweetness. Then comes the coffee flavor, just flavor - no bitterness, and the sweetness still lingers, up until the last bite of chocolate. A roastiness fills as it goes down, again with the dried fruits, but overall pleasant. The mouthfeel is nice, pretty full, but kind of slick, this one fits the bill in terms out mouthfeel, but isn't a standout. An easy drinker for sure, I mean, you have to sip, but easy, good for the style. Recommended for an easily accessible RIS.

taylorhamrick, Apr 30, 2009
Photo of HisDorian
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Was looking for another beer when I spotted this gem. Having only heard of it's wonders, I immediately bought a bottle.

Poured from 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Beer was not super chilled, but still fairly cold.

First impression, WOW!! Super dark color. Nice dark head of about 2.5".

The head dissippated as I wrote the start of the review. Smells wonderful, like a strong oatmeal/imperial.

Lacing appears to be very prevalent.

first sip...had to take 2. Very complex. Nice sweetness to go with the hops. subtle chocolate and carmel. Nice big finish with a touch of spiciness. Big round oatmeal taste.

I wish I had bought the pack now instead of just a single.

Mouthfeel is thick, but not too heavy. Although it's a super complex flavor, it's still easy to drink. The finish sits very long.

I may have found one of my new favorite beers.

**edit**

I can imagine cellaring this beer and it will only grow. Some bottle time on this would be nice.

HisDorian, Apr 29, 2009
Photo of jdhilt
3.7/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a four finger light brown head that fades quickly leaving some lace. Totally black color, no highlights. Light carbonation and light-medium bodied. Roasted coffee nose. Flavor is nearly sweet coffee, with a burnt coffee finish, not bad but not enough beef for a RIS. $2.50 for a 12oz bottle from Beverage Warehouse Winooski, VT.

jdhilt, Apr 28, 2009
Photo of JamesP123
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured in a tulip glass. Bought from Cost Plus World Market, no clue on the age.

A. Pours a deep black, the light had absolutely no chance of shining through this one. Big brown pillowy head with great lacing.

S. Rosated chocolate malt dominates the smell tyhroughout. Almost no alohol noticable, impressive for a 9% abv.

T. Thick and creamy. Major roasted and chocolate malt flavor. Don't taste a lot of alcohol, but it warms up the stomach fast. A spicy, bitter finish.

M. Thick and creamy, not much carbination. Just what youd expect from a really good RIS.

D. Quite a good beer, due to the overbearing (In a good way) style not one I'd drink more than one or two. Would recommend to anyone as a very good beer.

JamesP123, Apr 25, 2009
Photo of rayjay
4.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

2006 vintage. My last one! I've always loved how this beer ages over the course of a year or two and this three year version is the oldest I've had.

One great looking very dark brown beer that lets in a little bit of light around the edges and produces a moderate brown head that throws a decent web down the glass.

Lots of baker's chocolate on the nose. Subtle yet rich and decadent.

Flavor also packs a subtle whollop. Big rushing waves of ever-evolving flavors. Rich chocolate malts are at the forefront from beginning to end. Grainy, fresh malt, with notes of highly kilned carmel malt. A distinctive nuttiness and a light coffee/chocolate powder note. Mild hop bitterness after all this time, still there to provide a wonderful bitterness to counter the equally mild sweetness.

Great mouthfeel from obviously very good quality stout water; probably a healthy dose of bicarbonate. The mouthfeel is lightly carbed, and reminds me of the delicious mineral content in a good scotch. Very refreshing for a big heavy beer. Medium viscosity.

Obviously we are not dealing with a thick, massive, syrupy extreme beer, instead a big, bold stout that shows it's refinement through subtle and balanced flavors. Three years makes it taste like a sweet delicious chocolate bar.

I highly recommend this widely distributed beer that i overlooked for about 7-8 years straight. It's one of the best beers in it's style. Although it's easily outdone by other bolder beers, it's hard to match it's sophistication. I also love North Coast's other stouts, especially the organic Old Plowshare.

Cheers!

rayjay, Apr 24, 2009
Photo of littlekidlover
4.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I used to drink this a lot on tap at the Map Room in Chicago. It was not until recently when I moved to a neighborhood that lacks good beer selection in every store that I realized how much I truly love this beer. By chance a liquor store near me that has a paltry craft beer selection happens to carry this. The appearance is "none more black" even held up to the light BLACK! There is a medium tan head which quickly goes away. It smells mostly of coffee and dark chocolate, maybe a little burnt caramel and oak. The taste is everything in the smell, add a little dried fruit and hop bite. Mouth feel is silky and a little sticky with enough hops to balance it out to not be "sticky sweet" I could pretty much drink this beer until the high alcohol knocked me out, it is not difficult to drink at all.

littlekidlover, Apr 23, 2009
Photo of Sean9689
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours black with a tan head into a tulip. Milk chocolate, roasted nuts, and a little hint of alcohol on the nose. Taste is sweet chocolate with a little kick of alcohol, I really like this one. Mouthfeel is rich and thick, perfect for this RIS. I had another glass right after the first, so I will def revisit this one often.

Sean9689, Apr 22, 2009
Photo of Bcaulin
4.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice deep brown in color -- Can definitely catch a little light through it around the corners of the glass. Not pitch black like some of the bigger stouts. Nice head that quickly receeds into lacing. Lots of carbonation.

Lots of chocolate and dark malt in the nose.

Really nice smooth taste. Has a lot of that same flavor of the dark roasted and chocolate malt. The taste lingers for what seems like an eternity.

Excellent smooth mouthfeel. Very well rounded and balanced RIS overall. Definitely one I will be going back to.

Bcaulin, Apr 22, 2009
Photo of LordAdmNelson
4.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours an inky, opaque black with abut a half inch of light brown head. Laces moderately.

S- Roasted malt, chocolate, slightly boozy, some hop presence (piney, mainly). Maybe some dark fruit lingering in the background.

T- Coffee, dark chocolate, sweet and roasted malt, light alcohol bite (gives it a slight sweet kick), hops are far less present than in the nose, but there is a slight piney finish. Pleasant and good. Finishes slightly prickly from the alcohol. Thinking about pulling the trigger on the 4.5... ok I did.

M- Thick. Creamy. Very nice.

D- Goes down smooth. Definitely a good sipper and enjoyable stout. Well-crafted beer.

LordAdmNelson, Apr 21, 2009
Photo of PSUBeerman
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle, tulip glass

Pours very dark, nearly opaque. The head is wonderfully thick and has great retention. It is tan and creamy.

Aroma of malts and coffee. very slight hop fragrance.

Coffee and bittersweet chocolate hits you immediately. The toasted malt flavor is also present, as well as the alcohol. there is something slightly tangy that I cannot describe, but it is great.

Nice smooth mouthfeel and easy to drink. I love the flavors in this IRS...I also like its bottle.

PSUBeerman, Apr 21, 2009
Photo of ReadyFireAim
4.7/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very nice! This is one of the reasons I fell in love with the RIS style!

A - Very dark, nearly black. The head retention on this beer is ridiculous. Kept its head for nearly a full two minutes, then settled nicely to a thin padding of creamy brown goodness. Also note that the head is made up of very tight, small bubbles. This usually signifies a long natural fermentation and conditioning (without the use of adjuncts to spur conditioning)

S - Great, great aromas. Licorice, dark Belgian candi, fruits and esters peeking through (a little bit of banana and lemon rind, maybe); slight hop astringency backed up with the roasty coffee smells you would hope to have in your stouts. Very nice.

T - What can I say? You've just got to bend the knee to this one. Let it wash over you and deliver everything that the aroma promises. Truly fantastic and complex.

M - Pretty nice mouthfeel. A little sticky (which is alright); slight astringency from the alcohol and hop characters.

D - I would give this a 5, but it's a bit too alcoholic to warrant more than two (unless of course you're home - then drink 'til your heart's content). Though for the style, you can't expect much less than 8-9% ABV, so I'm not saying it's wrong. Definitely a sip-and-savor beer. And a damn good one, at that.

For my money, I put this one right behind Sam Smith's RIS, and ahead of Victory's Storm King RIS. Seek and enjoy!

ReadyFireAim, Apr 20, 2009
Photo of MunchkinDrinker
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours completely black. No hints of light around the edges. A moderate dark cream head that leaves some lacing.

S - Dark fruits, like blueberries and raisins. Some chocolate. Very slight hop spiciness amongst a very strong dark malt backbone. Very appealing and exemplary of the style.

T/M - Flavors don't quite come through as they do in the smell. Rich and smooth but not heavy. Chocolate comes through in the aftertaste, as does the fruit. The hops come through stronger in the flavor than the smell. Pleasant.

D - High alcohol, but easy to drink. Wouldn't drink more than one per sitting, but would have one every night. :P

On edit: Mouthfeel in some bottles has a biting carbonation that needs some mellowing out before flavors start coming through.

MunchkinDrinker, Apr 20, 2009
Photo of seand
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a large stemless red wine glass.

Appearance: Pours solid very dark brown, maybe black. Two finger tan head, which disappears leaving a thin film on the top. Good lacing.

Smell: Sweet, complex but not overpowering. Hints of french vanilla coffee.

Taste: Taste is subtle and complex, hiding the alcohol well. Somewhat sweet, with mild but detectable hoppiness.

Mouthfeel: Great, light carbonation, a little bit of stickiness, definitely complements the taste.

Drinkability: Goes down easy, but the high ABV means you don't want to go through too many.

My first Russian Imperial Stout, and I will be trying more of the style.

seand, Apr 19, 2009
Photo of stbfan
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

black/dark brown, almost opaque with a huge tan head! looks luscious.

smells like chocolate, coffee, light caramel, hops.

tastes huge, malty, chocolate/coffee, bitter finish w/alcohol punch.

wow. a nice stout. also leaves a nice lacing on snifter.

a great beer. especially for the price and availibility.

stbfan, Apr 19, 2009
Photo of Jtschupp04
4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured into a trappist glass

looks like: root beer float.

smells like: cherry chocolate coffee.

tastes like: nutty cocoa.

feels like: cold foamy cappuccino

drinks like: french pressed coffee

i love stouts and this one enforced the love and lust for more delectables that you can't see through.

Jtschupp04, Apr 18, 2009
Photo of BigMike
4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a complete black with no highlights and two fingers worth of tan head.

Smell is roasted malts and chocolate.

Taste is pretty much equal to the smell. Raosted malts, chocolate, and dried fruit.

Mouthfeel is somewhat light for an RIS but it is smooth and drinkable. Pretty balanced. Nice smooth finish and the 9%abv is well hidden.

This is a verygood Russian Imperial Stout. I recommend to any fan of the style.

BigMike, Apr 17, 2009
Photo of MaineBirdMan
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I would like to start with the label. Pretty darn cool label. A little weird having Mr Rasputin staring at me while I drank his beer. North Coast Brewing Company has put out some nice labels.
a-dark molasses with a nice smoky brown head.
s-a slight alcohol scent, maybe some chocolate with a touch of burnt molasses.
t-good amount of hops, chocolate, touch of alcohol on the finish.
m- creamy but with a good amount of fiz.
d- I only bought one and wish I had bought more. Only MGDs left in the fridge. Oh well, in this economy a $6 six pack of MGDs seem to beat out a $10 four pack of Old Rasputin. I'm glad I can try at least one.

MaineBirdMan, Apr 17, 2009
Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 9,662 ratings.