1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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

9,938 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,938
Reviews: 3,364
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.47%
Wants: 304
Gots: 1,344 | 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: 9,938 | Reviews: 3,364 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DBoone
3.1/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Very nice appearance. Dark, almost black, not much head or carbonation when poured vigoressly in a brandy snifter. Khaki colored head with little lacing.
There was hints of chocolate and dark roasted barley and very little hops.
The taste was of very dark roasted barley with a moderate amount of bitterness noticed on the back of the palate mostly due to dark roasted malt.
This beer had a nice light mouthfeel for a russian imperial stout. Not much aftertaste and coating on the tongue.
Only drink 1 or 2 of these in a session.

DBoone, Apr 17, 2009
Photo of Seru1
3.15/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottle Serving from Georgia poured into a pint glass.

Appearance- Dark Blackish Brown With a creamy Browinsh Tan Head. Just rich enough

Smell- Big smells of coffee with chocolate notes. Lots of roasty and woodsy aromas make me think they used American oaks

Taste- Roasted malts hit you like a slap in the face. Coffee flavor mixed with bitter chocolate round out this big flavored beer. Very Bitter.

Mouthfeel- It really coats the tongue and fills the whole mouth it's a nice big beer.

Drinkability- Abit bitter during cold weather I could probably have a few. But in other weather one a day is about the most I could have.

Notes: This was my first russian imperial stout. And it was not at all what I expected. I had heard they were sweet. But I certainly didn't pick that up.

Seru1, Apr 15, 2009
Photo of dfolmste
4.85/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Looking forward to try out my new Sam Adams snifter.

Appearance: Pours a jet black with creamy coffee head. The head looks like it is going to rise up, but instead disappears instantly. For a beer with 9% ABV this is to be expected.

Smell: Alcohol mixed with dark fruit. Smells like a liquor. Chocolate, ice cream, raisin and cherry. Smells like liquid dessert. Extremely complex and delicious.

Taste: Amazing! The delicious smell cannot even compete with the taste. Everything I named in the smell plus a cast of others. Impossible to put in words. Get this and try it if available.

Mouthfeel: Remarkably smooth with the taste covering all parts of the tongue. First hits sweet, then bitter roasted coffee and chocolate. Not a bit of astringency or off flavors. Probably over 7 different flavors in one sip. I want to try and describe all the flavors, but I want to drink more.

Drinkability: A beer to be savored and analyzed. Would be the perfect dessert after a fancy meal or a warming beverage after long day of skiing. The winter would be the ideal time to consume. Due to the alcohol and body of this beer, it is best enjoyed in moderation.

I loved this beer. Plus the glass looks great.

dfolmste, Apr 15, 2009
Photo of roblowther
3.78/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The latest in my foray into Russian Imerpial Stouts, trying to discover why they so dominate the "best beers in the world" lists. It pours pitch black with a medium tan head that is dense and creamy and leaves one of the densest lacings I've seen. Smell is musty wood, leather, raisins, and oranges. The taste is surprisingly sweet, and not at all acrid or burnt as so many others I have tried. It tastes of coffee, soft malt, leather, and a pleasant chalkiness. The mouthfeel is a good balance of carbonation and chewiness. The drinkability is limited by the bitter finish. This fades nicely through the aftertaste, but it is a bit intense for a while. Probably the best of the style I've tried, but I suppose I'm just not a true believer.

roblowther, Apr 15, 2009
Photo of ROBORB
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a Sam Adam's Perfect Pint glass. This RIS poured a dark black with a 1 1/2 finger mocha head that lasted forever. It smelled of roasted malts, chocolate and a faint smell of coffee. The taste is dominated by bitter chocolate up front. That quickly changes to a creamy roasted malt/coffee finish. This beers seems to stay on your tongue for a while. This is an awesome RIS and a bargain at its price. Everyone should search this beer out if it is available in their area.

ROBORB, Apr 14, 2009
Photo of wiseguy142
3.73/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours jet black, oily with a rocky/creamy mocha head. Lacing actually looks like lace.. weird connection. Lookin pretty good so far.

Aroma is fruity and sweet.. slight touch of alcohol. Lacking in roasted grain aroma. A little vanilla and cream. Could be stronger, or the beer could be a little cold.

Taste has a pleasant chocolate flavor with a very slight alcohol bite. Dry in the finish, like a good porter. Malt and alcohol sort of stick to your tongue. Freshly roasted coffee towards the end. As it warms up a little more balanced milky sweetness and bitterness from the roasted malt comes through which is nice. All is a little subdued though, was looking for something a little more flashy.

Pretty light mouthfeel. Rush of carbonation towards the end of the sip. Disappointing, should be thicker.

This beer's got some good flavors but some of them need to be more pronounced. I would even scale this back a bit and up the body and it'd be a great porter.

wiseguy142, Apr 13, 2009
Photo of dukedevil0
4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had out of a 12oz bottle at Cleo's in Chicago, IL.

A: pours dark black with some nice mocha colored head that settles a little bit

S: smells like milk chocolate, slight coffee and roasted malts

T: a little more of the roastiness comes though in the flavor, but not overbearing...other flavors are the same as the smell

M: a little on the thin side of creamy, highly carbed

D: solid flavor, hard to taste the alcohol content, and the short side of creaminess helps the easy to drink factor

dukedevil0, Apr 10, 2009
Photo of IMincedTheKing
3.78/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Pours an opaque chocolate brown with a head like tightly packed brown sugar. Some bubbles can be seen crawling up the glass.

The smell is roasty and yeasty with some coffee and chocolate.

It tastes somewhat malty, but the rest of the flavors are overpowered by drying citric hops and a dominant aftertaste of chocolate. It feels thick and full in the mouth, almost like a milkshake.

A big bold beer, but I think it's a little too over-the-top (in flavor, mouthfeel, and ABV), to be extremely drinkable.

IMincedTheKing, Apr 10, 2009
Photo of CityBoy1986
4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass from a 12 oz. (355 ml) bottle.

The pour is a very dark brown with the faintest hint of ruddy hues near the bottom of the glass. An inch of head slowly recedes into a more manageable size, but it never really goes away. Lacing is on the good side.

The nose is mostly coffee and chocolate with some burnt notes. There is a tiny hint of alcohol. The taste is more of the same; again the alcohol is well-hidden. A mild bitterness is present throughout the sip.

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy without too much carbonation. Drinkability is good considering the ABV (and ABW, for that matter). If I didn't know the alcoholic content (and had more than one bottle), I could drink at least a few of these.

This is a nice example of the style that seems to fit even on a warm April night. If this were available locally, it would be a staple of the fridge.

CityBoy1986, Apr 10, 2009
Photo of hokies1999
4.8/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer had an amazing jet-black appearance with a reddish head that just never quit! I couldn't believe the head was not brown/black to match the beer but had a definite red hue. The beer had a wonderful coffee like aroma but that drew me in but didn't knock me off my feet when compared to its other attributes.

The taste just blew me away. An amazing toasted malty sweetness on the nose with espresso, dark chocolate and maybe, just maybe a touch or raisin or caramelized sugar in the middle with a slight alcohol taste in the finish to let you know this beer packed a punch. The mouth feel was exceptional, best beer I've ever had (with Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout a close 2nd) in this category. The mouthfeel was smooth and creamy. I didn't think a beer could be this creamy without the addition of oatmeal, but North Coast did it somehow.

Drinkability...I can drink this beer each and every winter night! Obviously b/c of the dark malt and heavy/creamy mouthfeel, this is not a summer (think 90F and 70% RH) beer. But on those cold Northern NY nights, this work of art will chase those winter blues away!

hokies1999, Apr 09, 2009
Photo of ClockworkOrange
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a single at the Beer Stop in West Hazleton. Poured from a stubby 12 ounce bottle into my shaker glass. Appears a nearly opaque black color with an inch of tight ecru head. Minimal lacing sticks to the inside of my glass as I make my way to the bottom. Smells and tastes of rich, dark roasted grains, caramelized malts, milk chocolate, bitter coca powder, fresh coffee beans, grassy hops, and molasses. Rich and full bodied with medium carbonation. Slight alcohol burn from start to finish. A really great RIS. It's year round availability is a plus as well.

ClockworkOrange, Apr 08, 2009
Photo of Nick3
4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer is a syrupy, liquid black with a small chocolate brown head that disappears quickly. Smell is coffee, molasses, chocolate, and roasted malts. Taste is smooth, rich malts up front with a slightly bitter finish that's accompanied by hints of dark chocolate. Alcohol warms and lingers in the finish as well. Carbonation dances across the toungue and leaves you wanting more. Beer is sticky and chewy in the mouth. A great RIS but fell a bit short compared to the Stone I had last night.

Nick3, Apr 08, 2009
Photo of britzdog
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

loking for a good stout ??? then skip this one . if you are looking for an exceptional stout then stop right here. pour it out and it looks like the black color in the sidebars you see on these pages. brown head with a long lasting lacing. burnt chocolate and roasted malts greet you nose. very little carbonation almost none to speak of. and what a great taste. you will not be disappointed with this selection

britzdog, Apr 08, 2009
Photo of LyonsHead
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: completely opaque black with a darker tan creamy head. the head stuck around for most of the drinking experience. excellent lacing

S: High in roasted malt. There is a bit of a burnt bread smell

T: definite coffee notes with toffee and bitter dark chocolate. great blend of all of these. nothing is too strong

M: full body and very smooth

D: this is my first imperial stout and its a very good one. Not overpowering by any means.

LyonsHead, Apr 07, 2009
Photo of midnite2sixman
4.58/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pitch black in color with an amazing brown sugar colored, moon cratered head with staying power.

Roasty roasty and toasty malts. Tiny notes of bitter chocolate, west coast style coffee, creamy chocolate.

Taste is creamy coffee, bitter chocolate, a decent amount of smoke somehow.

Mouthfeel is oh so smooth on this one. A huge beer, a huge amount of flavor, and it yet it finishes with ease. What a gem!

I Have to back up the general opinion on this one. One helluva stout!

midnite2sixman, Apr 07, 2009
Photo of Ricelikesbeer
3.98/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a huge, billowing head. Jet black and hard to see through. The head is cloudy with huge bubbles. It smells very chocolate like, with a little roasted flavor and earth. When you sip it sweetness immediatly fills your mouth, and coats your tongue. Almost too sweet for my taste in Imperial stouts, but nonetheless delicious and drinkable. Mouthfeel is very smooth and goes down easy. Not too thick. It is very inviting and you could drink plenty of it if it weren't for the high abv.

Ricelikesbeer, Apr 07, 2009
Photo of ironarrow42
4.85/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Opaque black appearance with a thin head the colour of espresso crema. Intense aroma of coffee with hints of burnt toast and bittersweet chocolate.

Very fine and spritzy carbonation lightens the mouthfeel up front. Fairly full body with a smooth & creamy texture. Luscious, roast and bitter character with plenty of coffee and bittersweet chocolate, and subtle notes of baked prune, molasses, and faint licorice, all with a dry edge. Big, lengthy finish. Very flavourful. Leaves a lingering bitterness, with a roasty and tangy character. Superb!

Surprisingly drinkable for its alcoholic strength, with some burn on the finish. Small bits of foam cling to the glass. Outstanding example of the style.

I would pair this with chocolate - either a rich, dense cake or some nice Belgian chocolates.

ironarrow42, Apr 06, 2009
Photo of Florida9
3.93/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Virtually black with lots of foamy light brown head. Head eventually dies down to a 1/8" of thick espresso-like crema.

S: Chocolate, malt, pine, and a good bit of alcohol

T: Creamy at first. Then dark, burnt coffee beans. Alcohol is present, but subdued.

M: Heavy bodied with low carbonation. Somewhat thick, but not overly viscous.

D: A very pleasant and rich stout, but much heavier than what I normally imbibe. Couldn't see drinking more than a couple of these.

Florida9, Apr 05, 2009
Photo of wchesak
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - black, opaque, 2 fingers of tan head, that dissipates to a thick tan ring leaving nice amounts of tan lace

S - bitter chocolate notes with some caramel

T - great chocolate backbone with some coffee bitterness, slight hop bitterness in the swallow, hardly any detectable alcohol except in the chest

M - velvety, full bodied, and finish quite smooth

D - so easy to drink, just the right qualities to exemplify a RIS

wchesak, Apr 05, 2009
Photo of gvbbjfalcon
4.53/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was my first beer from the North Coast Brewing Co. I picked up on my way home from work on a Friday night. I was not disappointed. I could only get through two before the 9% took affect. GREAT APPEARANCE, STRONG RICH AROMA... excellent finish...

gvbbjfalcon, Apr 04, 2009
Photo of shanem
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Black as night with about half an inch of dark tan head. Looks like oil pouring. awesome

S: easy blend of dark chocolate with some roasted/smokey notes. no bitterness in the smell at all

T: Dominated by a nice smokey taste and balanced immediately after with a great chocolate flavor. Carries a little sweetness with a bit of alcohol heat on the finish that sticks by until the next sip

M: Nice thick full bodied. almost creamy. leaves a slight stickiness

D: I found this dangerously quite drinkable for a RIS

Definitely worth the 4 pack, looking forward to having the rest. Probably one of the best basic non espresso/oak/chocolate type of Imperial stouts I've had

shanem, Apr 04, 2009
Photo of Riverwarrior
3.98/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

S = Chocolate and toffee with some roasted malts in the background.

T = Big bitter chocolate flavors upfront with the coffee bitterness coming through near the end. The finish was slightly bitter which balanced out the chocolate maltiness.

MF = Thick, heavy body with carbonation being fairly low. Super creamy.

Overall, this is one incredible RIS. The flavors are bold, yet, not overpowering. Highly recommend.

Riverwarrior, Apr 03, 2009
Photo of PrinceDarren
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Barrel Aged Old Rasputin RIS was tapped at Bavarian Lodge tonight. Unfortunately, it was a very small keg so it was entirely gone in 15 minutes, no exaggeration.

Nose was oak, oak, oak. Just the way I like it. Roasted malt aromas too.

Tasted dry for a RIS with a bit of woodiness and moderate roasted malt with touch of coffee and a wee bit of dark chocolate. Predominately oak/malt though.

The regular RIS is average by itself but the oak definitely kicked it up an interesting level. It was dry enough that I could have drank another, if only they hadn't run out so quickly... Good stuff.

PrinceDarren, Apr 03, 2009
Photo of surfer4life
4.05/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a tulip.

A - Pours thick and black with a huge brown head. Good lacing all the way.

S - Big dark chocolate scent, with some coffee and roasted malt hints.

T - Just as in the nose, massive chocolate taste. It's so heavy, there is some coffee as well but not quite as heavy as the chocolate.
Some hop bitterness is noted, but doesn't last long.

M - Heavy and low carbonated. Wonderful coating and alcohol warming.

D - Very drinkable, I will have many more of these.

surfer4life, Apr 03, 2009
Photo of kbeals
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- A vigorous pour reveals a jet black beer adorned by plenty of creamy brown sugar colored head. Excellent lacing and head retention throughout the session.

S- Toffee, bitter dark chocolates, a complex malt bill, both roasted and sweet, just a touch of alcohol.

T- Lots of roasted flavors, a burnt taste common to RIS's. A bit of bitterness and a dry finish to round it out. There is some alcohol flavor to it, but it's not overwhelming.

M- Very smooth with little carbonation. Heavy body.

D- The high ABV is a little detrimental to its drinkability, but I could probably drink more of these. A definite recommendation.

kbeals, Apr 01, 2009
Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 9,938 ratings.