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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

9,156 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 9,156
Reviews: 3,321
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.23%
Wants: 247
Gots: 998 | FT: 32
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 (23) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 9,156 | Reviews: 3,321 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tjthresh
tjthresh

Indiana

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

Pours and inky opaque black with a brown head that disapates to a ring. Molasses, smoke, bitter dark chocolate, dark roast coffee, chewing tobacco, spicey hops and alcohol in the nose. Prunes, very bitter, chocolate grit. Light smoke. Rather thin. Higher carbonation for the style. Slick and oily. Very good.

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2006 17:07:03 | More by tjthresh
Photo of dedrinker
dedrinker

Kansas

4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I love this beer from start to finish. It's a blessing that it is available year 'round. It smells of yeast/ fresh dough and roasted malts. Bitter chocolate, a little coffe. Tastes roasty, chocolate, hint of coffee and every once in a while - licorice. More hop bitters and more roast distinguishes this one from its British relative, but this has to bridge the gap as well as being an all around benchmark for the style.

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2006 06:25:43 | More by dedrinker
Photo of maundythirsty
maundythirsty

Wisconsin

4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Interesting looking RIS, being that it is not a glass full of squid ink. Very dark brown, to be sure, but I can see through the edges, with are bottle glass brown. Very little head to speak of, off-white and thin. Smells yeasty, like dark bread, with a big roasted malt note

Tastes of clean, round roasted malt all the way through, with some coffee edges and a wee hop bitterness. Mouthfeel is very creamy and consistent.

Wow. So that's a really good, even-handed Russian imperial stout that does its work without tasting like a bag of sugar. Beauty of a label, too, with the spooky little wave from the Mad Monk.

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2006 20:37:54 | More by maundythirsty
Photo of MVassar
MVassar

California

4.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Black as pitch in most of the glass, with a lovely dark ruby outline. After some beautiful cascading fireworks there's a most respectable medium-amber head, and fine lacing.

Some roasted malt, which is sweet and toasty. A hint of black coffee, and some unsweetened cocoa powder.

Plenty of well-roasted malt, chocolate, sweetened coffee extract, and even a touch of hops in the finish to provide a kick in the pants.

RIch and creamy at the start, with some serious bitter hops to balance things out.

This is a kick-ass, make-your-head-spin stout that is so smooth and supple that it qualifies as "dangerously easy to drink." Godspeed.

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2006 03:54:57 | More by MVassar
Photo of MrHungryMonkey
MrHungryMonkey

Texas

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

Dark as night, looks thick. Really large head: foamy, thick, brown. Great retention.

Rich chocolate, coffee, toffee, and mild floral hop bouquet. Sticky sweet.

Rich. All the advertised aromas strike. Mild fruit, dark and ripe. Pronounced American hop flavors in the end: floral and citric.

Thick and smooth. Moderate oral foamation. Almost no carbonation.

Impressively rich and deep array of flavors at first taste. So strong is Old Rasputin that this effect is lost near the end as my tongue slips into submission. I really like the hop flavors, they are a nice touch. Definitely worth a retry.

Serving type: bottle

12-07-2006 05:51:05 | More by MrHungryMonkey
Photo of Dizzy
Dizzy

Texas

4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours very dark, faint garnett highlights when held up to light. Lots of tan head with plenty of lacy. Aroma is a wonderful blend of chocolate and toffee with some fruitiness. Taste is carmel like initially, with some fruitiness. Dark, roasted malts dominate the finish and the alcohol becomes evident. Full bodied with moderate carbonation. I like this one, but I wouldn't want more than one. In addition to the high alcohol, too much roasted malt bitterness accumulates to enjoy more than one.

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2006 02:10:44 | More by Dizzy
Photo of JudgeRoughneck
JudgeRoughneck

Louisiana

4.63/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A hard pour of Old Rasputin produces two fingers of curiously striped head with a two-tone fade that prety-much is the same color as the white and tan parts of espresso froth. Disappointingly, the show is over in a few seconds and I am left with only a thing ring around the glass, with minimal strings of lace. The nose is spicy hop, earthy chocolate, coacoa, just a little coffee, dark brown sugar, molasses, and fig or date. Very little roasted aroma.

This beer is suprisingly light on the palate. I would describe it as a creamy blend of coffee, sweet milk chocolate, roasted grain, and then just a touch of roasted bitter that makes way for a little suprise. There is a twang of tart rasberry flavor in the finish. A very subtle molasses flavor shows itself as the beer warms. The aftertaste leaves a very gentle, lingering roastiness mixed with alcohol warmth. This is a very smooth and layered beer.

The artful blending of flavors makes reviewing it kind of a chore because it is difficult to dissect exactly what you taste, and it is so smooth you just want to gulp it down. In fact if I have one complaint of this brew, it is that for an Imperial Stout it is almost a little too smooth, lacking a certain "oomph" factor on the palate. All this combined with creamy, silky-smooth mouthfeel make this a dangerously drinkable Imp. Stout, and it would be all to easy to end up smashed, knocking these back like nothing.

Serving type: bottle

12-03-2006 18:56:42 | More by JudgeRoughneck
Photo of AWolfAtTheDoor
AWolfAtTheDoor

California

4.72/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving: Poured out of a bottle into a pint glass

A: Liquid onyx. Very nice 1" light tan color

S: Roast, roast, and more roast.

T: Oh my. Present yet very balanced roast. Plus a hint of semi-sweet-bitter chocolatey goodness. Bitterness gently creeps in on the after-taste. Doesn't taste like a 9% ABV.

M: Thick yet not overdone. The taste is definitely a lingerer, the kind of way a scantily clad lingerie model would linger in the morning.. only this isn't fantasy land.

D: At 9%, you're going to want to be careful with this. But should I have the opportunity to put a few of these away, I definitely would. Tremendous representation of the RIS.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2006 22:59:53 | More by AWolfAtTheDoor
Photo of AaronHomoya
AaronHomoya

Indiana

4.1/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a decent amount of head, especially for a RIS, and a black color. Smell is a delicious mix of rich, roasted malts and chocolate. Taste is sweet, malty, and roasted with coffee notes and a nice, balanced hop finish. Medium-bodied mouthfeel with solid carbonation. Nicely drinkable, especially for the style as it is ONLY 9% ABV and smooth.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2006 21:53:29 | More by AaronHomoya
Photo of Grundle20
Grundle20

Ohio

4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance:
I've said beers pour black before, well I lied, this beer pours BLACK. Light can almost not pass through the glass. It's thick black beer with a creamy nut colored head.

Smell:
Primarilly burnt chocolate and coffee in scent but there are some very minor cherry and biscuit notes. Pretty much what you would expect but good and balanced none the less.

Taste and Mouthfeel:
There is a very strong flavor of good dark chocolate. While beers to me tend to taste more like bakers chocolate this really tastes like good edible dark chocolate. The beer drinks incredibly smooth with bitter stings on the front and sides of my tongue. The finish is again chocolatey only with a little coffee in the mix. There is a full on aftertaste to this beer which I don't really like but the beer itself is good enough for me to look past this.

Drinkability:
Pretty much everything about this beer says not so drinkable aside from the taste. High ABV and an unclean finish are really what takes away from this for me, but it's a really tasty beer and would probably serve a stout fan well in terms of drinkability.

Bottom Line:
A pretty awesome stout. Not exactly my cup of tea but this was an enjoyable drinking experience and I would recommend this to anybody looking for something good or any fan os stouts.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2006 00:44:45 | More by Grundle20
Photo of becktone
becktone

Ohio

4.58/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

After walking about two miles to pay my rent in very unfavorable conditions here in Cincinnati, I finally returned to my humble abode and asked myself "What do I have in my fridge that can warm me up after that?" At about 35F outside and winds that made walking down a hill one of Hurcules' 12 Labors, I hoped I had something very dark, malty and strength imbuning in my fridge. As I looked in my fridge I almost started to sigh, and lo and behold forgotten in the back corner behind some other sixers I find I've an ample supply of Old Rasputin. Here are my thougts.

The pour is dark-black infact- With a tan creamy three finger head this brew looks just too good. Head begins to receed in size to a stable one finger size leaving some sweet looking lace along the sides of the glass.

Aroma is strong, sweet, and alcoholic. A robust chocolate character comes through and maybe a little bit of a coffee aroma as well, other notable smells are dark fruits, maybe some prunes. No hop aroma, or roasted bitterness aroma. All in all a great smelling brew.

Oh yes, this lifts my spirit and warms the soul. Strong sweet malty backbone gives real character and life to this brew. Chocolate malts take the foreground in this brew's flavor profile. Just a tad of hop flavor in the back of this one, one of the noble varieties I should think. Just there in the back, fleeting. Tastes great, but more complexitiy would add more to this brew....My upper body is now pretty much thawed, but my lower body is still pretty cool.

The body of this RIS is thick and full bodied and creamy just the way it should be. Carbonation levels are fairly low as benefits the style. I'll most likely buy this brew again. It is great to warm up with after coming in out of the cold and being pounded by the elements. Not something that I could sit around and drink all day, and it shouldn't be. I don't think that any RIS is meant to be that way. Definitely something to slowly savor. However, I also know that there are other RIS's that represent the style differently and I would definitely love to try those before I came back to this one, but I would not be adverse to another go-round with this brew.

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2006 19:59:07 | More by becktone
Photo of amatuerbeerguy
amatuerbeerguy

Oklahoma

4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured out a dark brown with a red hue. Tan head that was large, left lacing. Aroma of chocolate, roast, coffee, malt. Flavors chocolate, smoke, roast, a twinge of metallic, with alcohol warming seem to mule kick you in the senses. Mouth feel is a creamy, frothy, medium/high bodied with a moderate carbonation level. Definitely worth a keg, or case. Nice on a cold winter night like this one.

Serving type: bottle

11-30-2006 05:51:49 | More by amatuerbeerguy
Photo of dbalsock
dbalsock

Vermont

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

I've had this a few times, and tonight I decided on a formal review. The bartender served it beautifully. The head was gorgeous, like every nitro-tapped stout should have and the black color was quite nice. The smell was standard stoutish, but gave off more of a sweet coffee flavor than a bitter coffee flavor and that was rather enticing. The taste really developed the sweetness to bring a very nice balance to the beer. The mouthfeel was better than average, but probably because it was a nitro tap and added to the smoothness. It was drinkable in all respects, and I will keep getting it on occasion, but have a hard time going through a few pints in a sitting.

Serving type: nitro-tap

11-30-2006 05:06:30 | More by dbalsock
Photo of PBoegel
PBoegel

New York

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

presentation: 12 oz bottle poured into "duvel" tulip glass

a: deep dark chocolate, no light creeping through this solid monster, pours a decent 3/4 inch light brown head which rolled back after a minute or two.

s: bittersweet chocolate, roasted grains, toasted rye and pumpernickle breads, faint scent of raspberries/blackberries, some earthy hop tones

t: wonderful full cocoa and bittersweet chocolates upfront gives way to a roasty caramel sweet middle leading to a touch of chocolate dipped berries and a hint alcohol. A slight nod to a gentle hop flavor on a third sip that is ever so slightly pine citrus with a nicely place hop bitterness cleansing the palate.

m: medium to heavy body, but for style leans toward a thinner drier RIS, not in a bad way just certainly a contrast to some of the "thicker" versions I have had. Inviting and perfectly carbonated.

d: incredibly smooth easy drinking almost too easy and inviting for a beer of this strength, but I mean that entirely in a complimentary sense. This RIS has all the most impressive qualities of the style, worth repeated trips back.

Serving type: bottle

11-29-2006 03:27:53 | More by PBoegel
Photo of mnj21655
mnj21655

Massachusetts

4.6/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours pitch black with a nice 2, maybe 3, finger brown head and lacing that lasts until the end. When held to the light there are mere hints of ruby at the edges. Smells first of a hint of hops then strongly of sweet chocolately roasted malts. Great taste with lots of flavors. The sweet roasted malts dominate but as with the smell I am able to detect a hint of hop bitterness. I am able to pick out some coffee, bitter dark chocolate, and some dried fruits. A pleasantly bitter dark chocolate flavor lingers in the finish. Despite clocking in at 9% ABV the alcohol is masked quite well. Mouthfeel is great. Good, solid body that is thick without being chewy. This brew is also creamy and somewhat dry, very nice. Drinkability is excellent. This is a great interpretation of the style. Great taste with fairly complex flavors make this a treat.

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2006 04:37:06 | More by mnj21655
Photo of sachsich
sachsich

South Carolina

4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I had this one in a bottle for the first time. We cant get beers over 6% in south carolina, so i had to snag a couple when i was up in charlotte nc. this beer has so much character i dont know where to start. its a wonderful beer that you want to sit back and enjoy every sip you take

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2006 01:23:31 | More by sachsich
Photo of kimcgolf
kimcgolf

Georgia

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

Poured to an opaque black, with dark tan head that reduced slowly to a thin film and left good lacing. Aroma was very malty roasted nuts, with hints of chocolate, dark fruit and toffee. Maybe I was just hungry, but later in the drink, I swear I could also smell grilled, smoked steak. Taste was more of what was found in the aroma (less the steak), and the 9%alcohol blended in nicely to be a perfect complement to the malty sweetness, as the beer warmed . This all combined to leave a very tasty, pleasant, warming finish. This was all it was touted to be.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2006 22:29:58 | More by kimcgolf
Photo of jasonjlewis
jasonjlewis

Texas

3.3/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer was a little overrated by other users IMO. I had not read any reviews on this beer before drinking it at the bar. It had a nice apperance. Everything else was decent and slightly above average. Nice chocolate maltiness, but the alcohol is too dominant and needs balance. It needs a little more hoppiness to it as well. This beer was ok, but I think I'd pass on it for a different RIS.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2006 06:42:53 | More by jasonjlewis
Photo of bjohnson
bjohnson

Massachusetts

4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a black color, but not a jet black color that I would have thought from an RIS. Not much of a head, but caramel colored without much retention. Slight lacing also.
S: Dark chocoloate notes. Roasted barley and choffee. Sweet dark fruit, mostly figs and cherries
T/M: Roasted malt flavors stirke right off the bat. Milk chocolate and sweet caramel notes ring in as secondary players. Dark fruit and fig flavors also come through. Aftertaste is a tad bitter with the hops showing their presence. Faint burnt coffee notes also present themselves in the finish. Thick and chewy, but very smooth and silky on the palate. Mouthfeel is absolutely wonderful. Abv is definately noticeable and comes through with a spicyness. Big abv isn't overly obstrusive.
D: A RIS you've got to get your hands on. Very tasty and amazingly smooth. Excellent mouthfeel makes you want to drink the whole four pack. High alcohol doesn't get in the way even though it's very noticeable.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2006 03:21:08 | More by bjohnson
Photo of akorsak
akorsak

Pennsylvania

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

A 12 oz bottle purchased from LiquidSolutions.biz (free advertising for an excellent store).

A: The ale is a deeep black color with softer brown highlights when held to light. The head is small now but was bigger on pour and has laced nicely.

S: The aroma is one of roasted malts and sweet chocolate held together by a strong alcohol presence.

T: The stout has a strong, bold presence taste-wise. The first flavors to hit the tastebuds are roasted malts and alcohol strength. The intensity of the alcohol gives way to a vinous complexity. That complexity gives up hints of chocolate and warming alcohol. My only complaint is that the flavors are not big and bold immediately, they require a bit of time to really shine.

M: The roasted complexity is very pleasing, giving the stout multiple levels of flavor that build well upon each other.

D: The drinkability is limited by the 9.0% abv. The flavors meld well together though, creating a deeply complex ale that is smooth without knocking one out.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2006 03:20:03 | More by akorsak
Photo of schusterbauer
schusterbauer

Michigan

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

a highly enjoyable beer! pours black with some faint ruby highlights; has a huge tan head that vanishes over time. smell is a bit faint compared to some other imperial stouts, but it does smell nice -- warm chocolate, hops, maybe toasted almonds. taste is phenomenal! chocolate and coffee hit you first, with hints of fruitiness and tobacco next, and a very bitter, but controlled, hoppy finish. mouthfeel is quite crisp, for the style, but that's not a detraction. creamy and smooth in the finish. dangerously drinkable, as it's not as demanding as some other imperials.

Serving type: bottle

11-22-2006 15:13:22 | More by schusterbauer
Photo of Pooba001
Pooba001

Arizona

4.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Stout pours black with brown edges when held to light. Nice light tan head slowly dissipates. Looks quite thick. Smell is of big roasted malt and espresso, with roasted grain and raisin.

Taste is rich and sweet like molasses, roast grain and malt provide a nice biting counterpoint. Bitter chocolate, licorice, and burnt flavors are part of the supporting cast. Gets better as it warms.

Mouthfeel is good, mouthwatering even. Drinkability is excellent for a 9% ABV Imperial Stout. This is one of the best, and probably the "best buy" of big stouts.

Serving type: bottle

11-22-2006 08:00:10 | More by Pooba001
Photo of Sephiroth
Sephiroth

Indiana

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

This is the last bottle of a 4-pack that I bought about two years ago. Why am I just now drinking it? Because I hated it then.

Pours with very little head, the beer is dark brown, no lacing. Smells roasty and chocolatey, some vinous notes.

The taste has really dried out. Slightest touch of oxidation, roasted and chocolate malt. Mouthfeel has thinned, but is still chewy. Highly drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2006 23:09:14 | More by Sephiroth
Photo of KingG
KingG

California

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

I've had this beer plenty of times and have loved it for years.
Sampled at room temp.

Poured into my Stone Old Guardian glass.

Appearance is good. Black as night color. I mean really dark. Decent mocha-colored head materialized.

Smell is great. Turkish coffee, black coffee, dark chocolate, roasted malts and alcohol fumes tickle the nose. Mouth-watering smell.

Taste is great as well. Same as the nose with a bit more turkish coffee and dark chocoate. Wonderful flavor. Alcohol bites a little but is welcome in the flavor.

Mouthfeel is great. This stout coates the tongue as well as any RIS i've had. Carbonation is above average making this beer smooth in the finish.

Drinkability is good. I could drink a few 12oz bottles in one sitting but that would be about it and that's probably because of how big this beer is in terms of flavor and alcohol (9%).

Overall:
A fantastic beer and one of my favorite Russian Imperial Stouts. Luckily it's available year-round. Truely a classic example of the style.

12oz bottle
9% alc.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2006 04:56:29 | More by KingG
Photo of Neehan
Neehan

North Carolina

4.72/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This poured an almost black with a large, cocoa-colored head. It left a nice, interesting retention that clung to the glass for quite a while before slipping back into the mix. A nice taste that combined french roast coffee and chocolate. Exceptionally creamy and smooth taste with the chocolate again and more roasts, but not with an overpowering, burnt taste like many in this genre. A very nice mouthfeel with just the right touch of carbonation. Incredibly drinkable especially considering the alcohol and the fact that it is a strong, Russian Imperial Stout. Fantastic beer, I'll have to have more.

Serving type: bottle

11-20-2006 04:10:38 | More by Neehan
Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 9,156 ratings.