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Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout - North Coast Brewing Co.

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Old Rasputin Russian Imperial StoutOld Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout

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10,723 Ratings

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Ratings: 10,723
Reviews: 3,493
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.23%
Wants: 403
Gots: 1,863 | FT: 50
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:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 01-18-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (21) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 10,723 | Reviews: 3,493 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of aepb1
3.97/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Deep brown with a light tan, almost airy head

S- Chocolate and roasted malts, a bit of coffee, not nearly as strong as the taste would have had me think!

T- Full! Caramel malts up front with the coffee and hops lingering -- long aftertaste but not it's not bad at all

M- Not full or creamy as you'd think... almost light really and that's surprising

D- Drinkable-- like it a lot and the fullness of the flavor is pretty great but the mouthfeel just kinda kills it for me

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

Poured into my sniftner, this brew pours a jet black with a dark tan head about three fingers tall. The head steadily dissipates over the next few minutes, finally settling to a one finger tall head.

The nose is super heavy roasted malt and chocolate. Chocolate is definitely king, but it definitely has a devilish side....a hop side.

The flavor follow suit. Chocolate cover hops is the best way to describe it. I remember just about two years ago, I was in college and bought my first Ol' Raspy. God it was one hell of a tough stout to drink....good, but tough. And now that my pallet matured, it was the mixture of the hops and chocolate malt that made it so damn challenging.

Mouth feel and drinkability are both great. Overall, Old Raspy is excellent. I'm glad my pallet has matured enough to enjoy this great brew!

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

This is a beer I've been after for a while, and finally got my hands on it thanks to the Cracked Kettle in Amsterdam. Pours jet black with a decent level of carbonation and a big creamy tan head that shows good retention. The aroma is hugely dark and heavy with intense notes of chocolate, coffee and dark forest fruits. The taste is dark and bitter from the start with flavours of the highest quality cocoa, strong bitter espresso and a earthy smokey peat. After a few sips it is really the coffee flavours that come through the strongest, providing a massively rich imperial stout. The feel is full bodied and silky smooth, with just the right amount of carbonation. This is a superb imperial stout, one of the best i have tasted. I wish this was easier to get hold of outside of the US.

Photo of boothbeer
4.26/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Nitro-tap at the Map Room in Chicago

A: Pours a viscous dark black with 2 fingers of this dark mocha colored head. Lacing is beautiful and covers the snifter as this beers is consumed.

S: Dark chocolate and lightly roasted malts. Almost a sweetness to the aroma.

T: Lightly roasted malts and chocolate up front. Touch of vanilla. A little bit of hops comes through before the malts leave a roasty finish.

M: Having this on nitro made this amazing. Just super creamy and smooth. Very viscous and chewy. Probably one of the best mouthfeels on any beer I've had.

D: This beer was so smooth it went down with ease. I've always liked this beer out of the bottle, but nitro made it so much better. If I see this again, I will be ordering it.

Photo of bgildea
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Very nice dark black oil color. Nice thick tan head that left a significant amount of lacing.

S: Nice smell of caramel, vanilla, roasted malts, maybe a hint of chocolate or coffee as well.

T: Very nice taste. Complex, with a nice blend of malts, caramel, vanilla and hops. The beer starts with a great sweet taste and finishes with a lingering flavor of hops and coffee maybe. Very good.

M: Little thinner than I would have preferred. Still a good amount of chew though.

D: Very drinkable. The beer is delicious which of course will make me want to drink it again. I recommend this beer to any dark beer drinker.

Overall: Overall the beer was very tasty. The flavors were complex but well balanced. I definitely recommend trying this beer.

Photo of Chizoad
3.87/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Dark, inky totally opaque. Beige head with small retention. Looks good.

Fantastic smell! Flowers, blueberries, coffee (especially the bitterness), but malt dominates. Love the fruit in this, a really pleasant surprise. I let a few others smell this and nobody agreed with me, so I'm probably full of it.

The malt dominates again, and the hoppy bitterness completes an excellent flavor. Lots of depth here with layers of the malt.

Nice carbonation, good but not great mouthfeel. Probably just personal preference, as I like lighter mouthfeel. It's a stout, so for the style, I can't complain.

Not particularly drinkable, I definitely couldn't have more than one of these given the density and relatively high ABV%. While it lasted, was quite drinkable, but that was the end of the line.

Photo of DarrinRasberry
4.52/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Jet black with a small but lasting head.

S: Roast, roast, roast. Biscuits, cream, and nuts. Malt; milk chocolate. Superbly suggestive, sensual scent.

T: Almonds and chocolate. Light-roasted coffee. Very mocha-like in quality; hops are there, but subtle.

M: Thick and creamy. Leaves a nutty feel in your mouth and a wonderful beerstache to boot.

D: The most drinkable of stouts. The 9% ABV is totally hidden. Be careful with this beer!

Photo of rawthar
3.8/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A- Nice, thick , pitch motor oil and tar. Quickly dissipating head that leaves a coffee film. Looks exactly the way an RIS should.

S- Very rich aroma. Coffee is definitely the star of the show, but it is happy to share the spotlight with the supporting cast: Roasted malt, smoke, burnt wood, a hint of baker's chocolate and some booze.

T- Bitter, rich, toasty roasted coffee, a hint of woodland smoke.

M- Some creamy carbonation and a bit of an oily thickness.

D- This is a man's meal of a beer, good enough to drink a whole case, just on 24 different nights.

Photo of glid02
4.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Nitro-tap at the Brick Store.

Pours black with a large and cascading brown head. The head slowly recedes into a thin layer on top leaving thick lacing.

Smells of roasted malts, smooth dark chocolate, and very light leafy hops. As the beer warms the aroma sweetens a bit.

Tastes similar to how it smells, although a bit more complex. Lightly roasted malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by semi-sweet chocolate flavors. Midway through the sip the chocolate flavors sweeten a bit and are joined by very mild amounts of vanilla. Finally, hints of leafy hops come into play right before a mildly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is great. It's got a very viscous thickness with grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is very good. I finished my glass quickly and could easily have another.

Overall I was surprised at how much the nitro-tap changed this beer and even more surprised at how it positively affected it. Well worth a shot.

Photo of RobertTh3Texian
4.29/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It is not as opaque as I expected but nearly so. Deep reddish in colour with a tan head that will not go away so I can pour in the rest. The smell reminds me of walking through Central Market in the morning right after they got some fresh rye or Russian black bread done. Bout the same ingredients so... I love it when the heads are creamy, almost ice cream like. As part of them falls away to reveal the delicate insides of tasty cloud. The taste is more effervescent than I thought and man a lot going on. Well you have the fruity flavours from the malt. Deep roasty and a mix of more flavours than I can identify. Almost a plum, slight strawberry, bit of cherry and ten other things that I can't begin to emote. Leaves a taste of slightly overcooked toast and those lovely fruit flavours. I can see why this is a popular one.

Photo of PandorasBottle
4.75/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours almost black with a toffee-colored, rich head. A very sexy and impressive glass of beer.

Aroma: Smoky malts and bitter, unsweetened chocolate with a hint of coffee. The smokiness is to die for!

Flavor/Finish: Deep roasted malts, with elements of coffe and chocolate. the midtones are quite sweet while the finish has a coffee-flavored bitterness. Lingering, mouth-coating finish which betrays the high abv at times.

Body/Mouthfeel: Very full-bodied and creamy, not a heavy mouth-coating. Very low carbonation lends to a somewhat syrupy mouthfeel at times.

Drinkability: With a somewhat syrupy texture, high abv and a heavy, full body, Old Rasputin is a sipper to end a evening with. Greater ambition might result in an upset stomach.

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

Thanks to BBrianBoogie for sending me this excellent beer.

Pours very dark black color with a brown creamy head. It sticks well to the glass. The aroma is chocolaty with some licorice(light). Complex beer in the nose. On the taste side, it is similar to the aroma. However, the finish is bitter which was not present in the aroma. Alcohol is present in the mouth.

This is an excellent russian imperial stout. Complex but still well balanced with a very nice hoppy finish. The mouthfeel shows the beer to be slightly creamy. An excellent beer if you like this style.

Photo of irisier
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Looks thick. Opaque black, not even a hint of colour at the edges. Ok head for a high gravity beer. Nice milky coffee colour.

Smell: Coffee and chocolate with some sharp roasted malt aroma and some faint smokiness.

Taste: Slightly sweet dark malts upfront, followed quickly by roasted malt and charred bitterness. Hops are definitely there, but do not play a leading role in the flavors. A bit of rich coffee flavor is evident also. Bittersweet on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Pretty smooth, but definitely full bodied and a bit thick. Perfect for sipping. Warming.

Impressions: Quite good, I love charry tastes in beer and this one certainly has that. Pretty well balanced.

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

Poured into an Imperial pint glass.

A: Good head retention, 2in. nose, which is mocha, caramel in color. The deep black body is non-transparent.

S: Roasted malts with a complex nutty aroma.

T: This brew is very smooth and creamy. Strong malt up front, with a slight bitterness to finish.

M: A very powerful lingering taste, one that releases flavors well after the beer is gone.

D: A brew that is an ideal sipper, but for the style, this is one that I could drink often, even could have a few in a row, cannot say the same for other IRSs. Great flavors that keep you coming back for another analysis.

Photo of ryno09
4.23/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thick chocolatey malt nose with some alcohol present. Pours exactly like IRS should, black with tan head that doesn't last long - pretty good lacing going. Taste like dark chocolate with a bit of roastiness. Not a sweet beer at all so there must be a good amount of bittering hops but no aroma hops. It finishes really smooth with a slight alcohol presence.

One of the best year round imperial stouts you can get.

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

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Guinness pint glass

Appearance: Pours like black motor oil, smooth and viscous, has slight caramel colored head which remains throughout drinking

Smell: smells of roasted coffee, perhaps caramel, and slight alcohol aroma

Taste: tastes of roasted goodness, coffee flavor apparent throughout, rich, alcohol present on the backend

Mouthfeel: very smooth and creamy

Drinkability: very drinkable Russian Imperial Stout, the only knock could be that the alcohol is present on the backend, otherwise it's flawless

I'd greatly recommend this beer to all

Photo of vkv822
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into snifter.

The head is a thick frothy, milk chocolate color with beautiful lacing, and a black body. The aroma is perfectly of coffee and chocolate with light roasted malt notes, while the flavor is of light coffee and chocolate malts, with a slight hop bitterness towards the finish. I really enjoy the level of roasted flavors, as there are very pleasant notes, but it does not become overbearing as can easily happen.
The carbonation is a bit strong, but all in all it has a nice medium body, and is an incredibly drinkable and pleasant RIS.

Photo of charlesbyrd
4.12/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a St. Bernardus chalice.

A: This beer is pretty much jet black, with minimal signs of carbonation. I struggled to get much of a head, maybe because I poured it too carefully, but what I got was a nice caramel brown.

S: I get alot of charred malt aroma, with vague hints of unsweetened chocolate. The coffee is definitely there, too. This is what I imagined it would be like, and it smells great.

T: OK, I must admit that this is only my second ever RIS (I've also had the one from Stone), so I didn't quite know what I was looking for. There is an immediate black coffee/dark chocolate taste, accompanied by a related bitterness. However, the bitterness doesn't stick around for long, only on the edges of the tongue. It is followed with a mild malty sweetness. It's interesting how the different tastes seem to move around your mouth.

M: I am surprised by the amount of carbonation here. I was expecting something a little flatter and heavier. I'd say it's got a medium body that gives way to an oily texture accompanying the aftertaste. Not quite what I had in mind for a beer this powerful.

D: I thoroughly enjoyed this beer, even though some of the elements surprised me. If I hadn't known this was 9% ABV, you wouldn't be able to convince me; the alcohol is hidden behind all the other flavors, and it goes down so smoothly. Other brewers need to try this and take note.

Photo of bradleyp
4.1/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Market of Choice for selling this beer. I finally got to try this beer served in a snifter glass, and drank it in honor of the Man in Black from LOST. Smell was very clean, this beer is a dark brown. I felt that 9% alcohol really served it's purpose, and I don't think I could drink more than 2-3 of these beers in one sitting. However, I enjoyed this very much.

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

Beer looks amazing. Dark, brown almost black opaque appearance. Nice rich creamy tan head.

It smells like roasted marshmallow. The taste is very rich and full. It tastes like chocolate and coffee. This would make an excellent dessert beer. The 9% alcohol is well hidden. I expected a pretty good burn, but it is very smooth.

This might be the best stout I've had.

Photo of chaz01
4.23/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasting portion at a North Coast beer tasting event at a local grocery store. 12 ounce bottle poured into a champagne flute glass.

A: Dark, rich, oily and thick. Brownish tan head leaves lots of lacing on the glass.

S: Deep roasted malt aromas with some chocolate.

T: More deep roasted malts with some pleasant burnt toast and charcoal flavors. Nice long lingering aftertaste in the finish.

M: Full bodied, low carbonation and very creamy.

D: Great value for the money -- one of the most affordable and easily accessible big RIS on the market, but still delivers in quality.

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

Half of a 12 oz. bottle poured into a taster on account of my gorgeous wife wanting to share it with me

A - Jet black, with very little brown head (likely due to the pour) and no lacing to speak of

S - Coffee, subtle notes of pine

T - Toasted malts, dark roast coffee, licorice, and molasses throughout, with an excellent bittersweet chocolate / piny hop finish

M - Just about perfect for a RIS - a lot of body, but not too much to handle. Carbonation is at a very good level.

D - Decent; it's relatively thick, which is a plus for mouthfeel and a slight detractor in terms of drinkability.

A perennial fave, Old Rasputin is one of the best in its class. For the money - $7.50 a 4pk - it doesn't get better. If you haven't had this yet, do so immediately.

Photo of chaz410
4.01/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I've had this a many a time but got this specific bottle from the flying saucer.
Pours jet black with a kakhi colored head that's a lot more aggressive than I would have thought for a RIS. Froathy head stays througout the drinking.
Smells of rich mocha, coffee, chocolate, charred malt and slightly burnt biscuits. A nice caramel background smooths over the harsh dark characters of the smell.
The taste is upfront and unapologitic. It is dark, roasted, coffee with almost a peppery finish. Some hops make there way in mostly as a balance and a bittering enhancer. There's a fair amount of cocoa flavor but it's more dark and roasted than it is sweet and rich.
A thick mouthfeel and surprisingly drinkable for the upfront character.

Photo of scottyb88
4.23/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-dark black with a really nice 1.5 finger tan head

S-dark chocolate cocoa nibs, fresh coffee

T-malty and chocolate bitterness, not overly bitter more of a dark chocolate quality; nice espresso notes, not overly hoppy which I really like for the style

M-really smooth and not overly bitter; a nice coating of dark chocolate on the side of your mouth

D-so good; hits all the marks for the style and it's not too heavy or alcohol dominant; it is pricey tho...

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

God damn do I love the look of a nicely poured stout in a glass. Black with an enticing tan 3/4" head that looks like it's gonna hang around all day. Smells of dark chocolate covered fruit.

Whoa. Flavors upon flavors and they keep coming. A little bit of oak and alcohol, chocolate and cherry, with a roasted coffee finish.

Nice after dinner beer.

Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 10,723 ratings.