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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: 353
Gots: 1,551 | 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 verge
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

You mean you haven't tried this yet? Shame on you.

Pours black as night. Not quite as motor oil-ish as, say, Victory Storm King, but you won't find much darker than this. Held up to light, I see no ruby on the edges of the glass. Just black.

I like this beer too much at this point to take time to smell it. Sorry.

Taste - Burnt chocolate. Hey, I don't have the most developed palette, but dang. I taste dark chocolate. I taste espresso. I taste something burnt...but in a good way. I don't like burnt toast but I sure as hell like whatever is in this brew.

Mouthfeel - ooh so thick and so satisfying.

Drinkability - well, nothing's perfect I guess. This beer is SO good. But the 9% alcohol is evident, no way around it. Two of these in a night and I'm done. I tend to stop at one. No need for more. My mouth thinks I just smoked a cigar. Except in the morning, it won't still feel icky.

On the positive side, it keeps me from drinking too much. There is enough enjoyment in one bottle of Old Rasputin to last an hour.

An exceptional beer.

Photo of JohnnyChicago
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint.

A: Perfectly black with a big latte head.

S: Dark roasted coffee and dark chocolate. Its just loaded with big malt flavour and personality.

T: Follows the nose to a tee. Chocolate, coffee, big malt profiles and heavy booze.

D: Its a big beer and doesn't attempt to hide it. Its well balanced, but the alcohol is definitely there.

Overall: An excellent beer. Tasty and sweet, with a huge coffee and chocolate presence. This is a timeless classic and being amazingly cheap and available, there is no reason not to drink this. Recommended!

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

Surprised to see that I had no review listed for Old Raspy, so here we go.

Really, an impressive looking stout with a perfectly black body. Crowned with a sticky coffee-with-cream colored head, about 3 fingers thick to start. Retention wasn't as much as I would have liked, but it still provided plenty of foamy stickiness and lace.

Aroma begins with a slightly grainy roasted aroma before sweeter chocolate scents come in. Plenty of coffee aromas to go along with this too.

Old Raspy is not as chocolate as some stouts but not as coffee flavored as some either. It seems to sit somewhere perfectly in between with a great balance of sweet, bitter, and roasted flavors.

Mouthfeel is medium-heavy and a bit chewy. Overall, this stout is one of the best widely available stouts, and you don't have to wait in line at 3am just to give it a try. Great everyday drinker.

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

It just doesn't get any better than this. I have tried a zillion different beers and this is a top 5.
I won't repeat what others have all ready said other than a Rasputin a day keeps the doctor away.

If I had 3 wishes in my life, a life supply of this dark black gold and a key to the north coast brewery would be one of them!

Photo of Morey
4.01/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My first run-in with this beer.

Pours an opaque pitch black with a frothy tan (leaning towards brown) head that leaves behind some impressive lace for a beer that weighs in @ 9%. Rings are forming around the inside of the glass with each sip.

Offers an aroma filled with burnt sugar and dark chocolate. Not in your face, but present and pleasant.

The taste is surprisingly smooth. Loads of hop flavor add to the richness of the barley making for a flavorful beer. The bitterness from the hops lingers on in the finish.

Full bodied silky-smooth mouthfeel.

For a beer that is so full of flavor, bitterness, and alcohol it goes down very easily.

Morey's Bottom Line: Have wanted to try this for a while. I'm not a stout guy, but I love sampling all kinds of styles. This is one tasty stout. I like it better than most others that I have tried.

Photo of veratyr9
4.7/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured it carefully into a typical pint beerglass. pours very black, with a typical amount of head, dark brown/tan in color

Smells like.... well i just jumped right into drinking it

Tastes amazing. I have been going stout to stout looking for that one that just drops my jaw on the spot. this is it. Very roasted, rich, dark-type bitter flavor. a lot of breweries aim for this and screw it all up creating a bad bitter beer. North Coast brewing hit it dead on. Perfect type of bitter in a stout, no sour. The whole dark, slight coffee/chocolate thing.... spot on. out of the last dozen and a half or so stouts I've sampled this past summer, without question Old Rasputin takes the prize

It's 9%, and i've now had my fair share of them. I'm feeling quite fine. I have to say this is a much more enjjoyable feeling than other beers. The side effect is that you know you've drank them. they hit you, they hit you hard, you feel them in your gut. its like eating a loaf of bread that gets you drunk. i love this beer hah :D

Thank you Cheers wine and spirits in Chanhassen, MN for FINALLY stocking this. I have found my favorite imperial and I will be buying much more in the future!

Photo of LiquidCucumber
4.58/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Dark as a stout with a lovely looking tan head that reminds me of a chocolate malt.

S - Right up front with chalky malts that easily bleed into signature cocoa and coffee scents. Cocoa comes out more as it warms. Slight touch of booze.

T - Sweet, chalky and deeply roasted malts dominate the palate. The flavor of toast chocolate, coffee and sweet malts all come together for a perfect symphony of a beer.

M - Creamy and smooth with just the right amount of carbonation if not a little high for the style. The sweetness and a little bitterness stick around the palate to wreck any other flavors that may come after; make sure you have a good palate cleanser around!

D - If I didn't know better I could drink this as one of the only beers in my arsenal, and a pretty darn good deal at that! Just too big to be drinking all the time, but worth drinking one a day (keeps the doctor away, look how much Old Raspy himself went through haha).

Photo of hoppyFreshness
4.6/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

This is my favorite russian imperial stout. It tastes incredible and goes down easy (especially on nitro). A little too easy. This beer tends to put the demon in me and the spirit of old Grigori Rasputin comes out in full effect. Dire consequences rapidly ensue.

Photo of mavbrew
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my Brooklyn snifter, giving the DFH snifter the rest for the night.

A: Deep black in color with a dark brown, finger thick foamy head that slowly dissipates, leaving nice lacing down the glass.

S: Has a very sweet smell to it, chocolates and dark fruits seem to be present in the nose as well. Faint scents of roasted and caramel malts.

T: Has a bit of an alcohol taste up front, similar to the smell with a very sweet taste as well. The chocolates and dark fruits seem to hit the palate together. Roasted malts come alive in the finish.

M: Medium bodied with an average amount of carbonation. It is a little thick but also smooth.

D: A smooth drink for a higher ABV, the alcohol is noticeable, but it is not overpowering. A very good stout to say the least.

Photo of stingrayvr6
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured almost black into a pint glass with a thick creamy head, great retention and clings to the glass. Smelled of dry roasted malts, some hop bitterness, and coffee. Taste smokey, roasted malts, chocolate with dry finish and warm alcohol. Incredibly smooth, clings to the mouth. Deceptively easy to drink, and pairs well with desert. Excellent beer.

Photo of RickS95
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Good looking. Dark black, with a fluffy brown pillow of bubbles sitting on top. The head will stay for a visit before going away.

This thing smells manly. You can almost smell bitter with chocolate and coffee and smoke...all things I like in a brew.

The taste is similar, with the chocolate and coffee, but the malts come thru on the palate.

There's a creaminess to it that you can't beat. It actually starts sweet before giving way to a nice bitter in the finish. Deep in the swallow, you'll pick up a gentle heat from the alcohol.

This is surprising drinkable for being so high in alcohol and IBU. It has a nice taste and like I said, it's very manly, but everything balances niceless to create a pleasant drinking experience.

Photo of mcnabb0001
4.63/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle with Rasputin on the label putting a communist curse on everyone that drinks this.

A - pours jet black with a nice thickness, big tan colored head just rises to the top of the glass and leaves a thick lacing as it dissipates.

S- sweet, coffee, dark chocalate, dark fruit (raisons) actually the sweet alcohol smell stings the nose a little.

T - nice bitterness hits the tongue followed by a blast of coffee and dark chocalate. Sharp sweetness rides the chocalate coffee wave down the throat. Alcohol is definitely present but not overbearing.

M - fulled bodied, thick, and smooth. nicely carbonated for an Imperial with a nice warming affect in the back of throat and in the chest as this one goes down.

D - Rich, smooth, and filling. This Stout is big and boozy. One maybe two are all I need of this Imperial.

Overall this is one of the best I have had it ranks top not sure if I Old Rasputin or BBCS better at this point

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

Review from 11/4. 12 oz bottle, pint glass.

A- Beer is completely opaque black when the glass is full, but closer to dark chocolate once the glass was almost empty. Poured with a 2 finger light toffee colored head that dropped to a thin coating. Good amount of blobby lacing.

S- Sweetened coffee, dark roasted malts, toffee, and some light floral hops.

T- Very much like the smell. Toffee, sweetened black coffee, dark malts, with a finish of floral hops which leaves a light bitter finish along with the coffee notes. Chocolate is also present at times. Some faint alcohol is detectable on the finish.

M- Very smooth and creamy. Medium bodied, but not dry. Some prickly carbonation.

D- Very high drinkability here. Well balanced flavor and incredibly smooth. Could be a sipper, but it's hard to put the glass down. The price is nice too.

Photo of ToAzwethinkweizm
4.47/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed on 5 November 2010.

Poured at 50 degrees F, appears dark chocolate brown out of the bottle, black in the glass. Poured into a Sierra Nevada XXX snifter, 2-finger soapy head that goes away quickly, lacing is average. Aroma is delicate, consisting of mostly roasted malts and a touch of coffee and caramel, followed by some hotness of alcohol.

I wait 5 minutes for this to warm up and settle. Out of nowhere comes intense dark chocolate aroma, more caramel, a touch of bread (like Guinness bread), all presenting themselves on a beautiful bed of super roasted malts. The taste explodes with super rich roasted coffee flavor. Maple and oak flavors make themselves known. If I had to associate any dark fruit flavor to this, it would have to be figs. The glass gets lower, and a slight maroon color appears in the beer. The flavor of roasted malts is so intense, the flavor doesn't escape my taste buds. Neither does the roasted coffee flavor.

I'm standing in front of a warm woodstove sipping this slowly, 3 ounces to go. Aroma of dried black cherry says 'hello' and the hotness of alcohol actually diminishes a little! Much less carbonation by now (which is fine!) and this beer gets a little bit sweeter and the roasted malts seem more developed in just one sitting. I only wish I had a second one to sip on.

Photo of bens0n
3.95/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

This is one of the best looking beers I have seen, it pours an obsidian black, 100% opaque with rich amount of creamy tan head, pretty dark colored head. Every sip leaves a thick coated rim on the pint glass.

You can smell roasted malts and there is a lingering nutty coffee aroma that is pretty subtle, nothing special here, but still solid. Flavor wise, it has a roasted coffee taste with some hints of brown sugar. The aftertaste is bitter and nutty. Its very smooth and creamy, but also pretty filling. Just enough carbonation to balance the smoothness and alcoholic kick this beer packs.

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

I have been wanting to try this one for quite some time, and I recently received a bottle from a friend. So lets jump right into this one.

Look: Opaque black body with a creamy coffee head with good retention and lacing. Simply beautiful

Smell: Immediately gives off the scents of rich medium roasted coffee/coffee ice cream, rich dark chocolate, toasted wheat and bread, roasted nuts, oak, vanilla, and a very slight hint of red wine. Marvelous aroma.

Taste: WOW, the first thing I get is Coffee, coffee, and more coffee. Although its pretty obvious, coffee is the dominating flavor in this brew, but the coffee does allow the flavors of dark chocolate, charred oak, vanilla, toasted bread and nuts to seep into the taste. Its big and malty up front with the perfect amount of hop bitterness at the finish and a nice amount of warmth form the alcohol, and gives off a slight flavor of red wine and orange rinds. Simply Delicious

Mouthfeel: Its thick, smooth, has the perfect on tongue sensation/level of carbonation, and is warm going down. It feels wonderful going down.

Drinkability: Too drinkable, I would have No Problem having a 4 pack of these all in one night. The flavor, texture, and consistency of this stout are downright incredible.

This is without a doubt, one of if not the best stout(s) I've ever had.

Photo of TMoney2591
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a GameWorks shaker pint glass.

Thanks to VDubb86 for another shot at this brew!

This bottle served as a coda to our Hallowe'en mini-tasting. It pours a nice onyx topped by a finger of light tan/dark ecru foam. The nose comprises roasted malts, toasted rye bread, pumpernickel, and a light flash of molasses. The taste is nearly identical, though heavier on the roasted malts. The body is a stolid medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a somewhat thick and chewy feel. Overall, a very nice bit o' stout, one that drinks way the hell too easily for its (and my) own good.

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

On nitro at Flying Saucer served in a standard pint glass a deep opaque black with a nice frothy khaki head that lasts and leaves nice lacing on the glass. Aroma is a bit of roasted malts, not much else. The taste is a nice amount of smooth roasted malts along with bitter cocoa, molasses and some mild espresso. The beer is medium bodied with smooth carbonation and just a bit of alcohol presence. This is a great nitro brew, one I wish was more readily available.

Photo of DelMontiac
4.47/5  rDev +4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Not that this beer needs another review, but it's great practice and I really love this beer. I've had this beer many times. I think it requires several tries to really appreciate it. I poured this into an imperial pint glass. I like to pour this beer pretty fast and rough for a bigger head creating the best nose and lace.

Appearance: Gotta love the deep black/brown darkness. Like a blackhole, no light escapes. A slightly fast, rough pour produces the best head - luxurious deep cappuccino color with a texture that reminds me of...I don't know...cappuccino or latte foam or maybe something I'd love to sleep on, hehe. Lacing is left with each sip producing a consistent scalelike pattern.

Aroma: Dark, nearly burnt malts and very dark chocolates with a hint of hops peeking through. Burnt smores anyone?

Taste: The taste buds get a shock at first, but they soon calm down and allow you to savor the dark roast coffee and cocoa bean flavors. Burn/carmelized brown sugar comes to mind as well. Hops are not present until the finish. It's Halloween (CST), so I popped a couple of Hershey's minis near the end of the glass - heavenly.

Mouthfeel: Heavenly. Not syrupy and not sticky, but smooth and silky like hot chocolate.

Drinkability: I never drink more than one of these in a sitting. Just makes no sense unless you need two to make it through that big juicy T-bone.

Overall: Old Rasp is just perfect with a grilled medium/medium rare T-bone or ribeye - any red meat with nice marbeling. Save some to have with a chocolate dessert and you've got yourself a perfect evening.

Photo of JayS2629
4.05/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle.

A- A muddy, deep pitch black coffee with a creamy mocha head.

S- Definitive coffee. Back tones of chocolate. Slight fruity smell with overtones of rosted malt.

T- Again, coffee. An earthy licorice rich with complex flavors. Strong aftertaste of cocoa. Hints of vanilla. A little too alcoholy.

M- Thick and creamy

D- Definitely a sipping beer. A good stout. Big, filling and thick. A good beer for cold weather. Strong on the back of the tounge with alcohol. Definitely have to drink it slow.

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

The appearance is great. It is a deep black color with a nice thick brown head. Head was about an inch thick immediately following the pour, head retention could be slightly improved, but all in all a stellar appearance.

The smell is good, Lots of dark-roasted malt smell, not much hoppyness, not detecting a lot of anything else.

At first sip it's mostly just dark malt with a strong coffee aftertaste. Taking a larger swig (and a little more time) there is a fairly strong fruity presence followed by a lingering bitter coffee aftertaste.

The beer is surprisingly less viscous than you might think. It's not strongly carbonated and this imparts a watery feel on the tongue.

Overall drinkability is good. Even if you're not usually one for stouts, it's definitely worth a taste. Works well as a stand-alone or dessert beer when one has lots of time to digest and dissect the different flavors.

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

A: Pours a pitch black color with a two finger head with such thick tiny bubbles that it isn't going anyway. The brew has been sitting for a good 5 minutes and the head hasn't changed at all.

S: Smells of dark chocolates, dark roasted malts and some coffee aromas.

T: Very complex taste. The roasted malts give a pleasant bitterness to the beer, while the aftertaste is full of darker fruits as well as the coffee overtones and some sweeter chocolate notes.

M: Feels very nice on the tongue, a medium bodied beer with a low amount of carbonation, after swallowing you can definitely feel the alcohol on the back of your throat.

D: Very drinkable, I'd definitely have another one after this, but unfortunately, this was the last one.

Photo of rrski198
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: totally black, large, creamy, mocha colored head.

S: Dark chocolate, slight alcohol bitterness, burnt grain

T: Spent coffee grounds, bitter chocolate, burnt sugar

M: Good carbonation, not overly chewy, bitterenss kicks and sticks around on the tongue.

O: For the ABV, it is not apparent. Very well balance. A GREAT BEER and representation of the style.

Photo of jsanford
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours dark black with a creamy, chocolate-milk colored head. Retention is great, and it leaves behind sticky lacing on the glass. This is the standard for what a RIS should look like.
S - Dark roasted malt, dry cocoa powder and dark dried fruits (raisins, prunes and figs) with a bit of alcohol.
D - Very dark roasted (almost burnt) malt dominates, along with more dark cocoa powder. Expresso roast coffee, raisins and vanilla are in there, too. Quite a bitter finish, and there's definitely some alcohol to be found, but that fades dramatically as it warms up.
M - Creamy, medium-heavy body with low carbonation. I usually like a bit more carbonation with such a heavy beer.
D - Very drinkable, this is a perfect cold weather drink.

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

12oz stubby bottle into tulip pint glass. (Like the "traditional" Guinness glasses)

A: opaque. Black. Some Coke-colored highlights when held up to light. Small head that fades to some coffee-colored lace. No doubt it'll stick to the sides of the glass. This stuff looks pretty viscous.

S: Dark fruit, alcohol, brown sugar/molasses (?), coffee/roasted malt. In that order.

T/M: Viscosity is as predicted under "appearance." It coats the palate and leaves a coffee-like bitterness for an aftertaste. Also gives a warming sensation on swallowing, like good whiskey. Has a brown sugar- or molasses-like sweetness up front, and the dark fruit from the aroma hits between that sweetness and the bitter aftertaste. Carbonation is present and adds a bit of acidity, but does little to cut the viscosity.

D: Very drinkable, to the point of being deceptive. It smells like alcohol, but it doesn't taste like alcohol, which can lead to drinking it too fast.

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