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Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout - North Coast Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Old Rasputin Russian Imperial StoutOld Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout

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BA SCORE
96
world-class

10,717 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 10,717
Reviews: 3,490
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.23%
Wants: 402
Gots: 1,859 | 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: 10,717 | Reviews: 3,490 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ajr24
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured straight down the middle into my tulip glass.

A- Thick black body with an amber hue when held up to the light. Fluffy mocha head that dissipates into a mocha ring/slight layer on top.
S- Invigorating aroma. Chocolate, toffee, coffee, and alcohol are prevalent aromas. The IBUs are also noticeable.
T- Roasty and smooth, somewhat of a hop bite. Chocolaty and creamy, too.
M- Velvety and chewy.
D- Drinks excellent for an RIS like this.

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

Poured on tap into a pint glass, the Nitro tap helps this beer along nicely. Pours a deep black with an inch of mocha head. Good retention and generous amounts of lacing follow and continue to the bottom of the glass.

Smell has the chocolate nose of the bottle but without the notes of alcohol.

More chocolate on the tongue and with a long lingering roasted malt finish, including a nice freshly grated chocolate texture. Medium bodied in the feel and has a slightly slick finish, though smoother than from the bottle. High carbonation of the bottle isn't present here, allowing for a smoother feel and better retention of the nitro induced carbonation.

Photo of bulletrain76
4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle. Almost black, dark brown with a scant brown head. Aroma has powerful licorice and roasted malts. The flavor is big and roasty with coffee bitterness; quite dry in the finish, and the hops blend in and don't overwhelm the balance. Full palate with fizzy carbonation. Very drinkable for an imperial, but intense and rich, dry and bitter. Goes nicely with chocolate desserts. (3.8) Rerate: This is damn good on tap. More dark chocolate and less hop bitterness, though still balanced nicely and very drinkable.

Photo of scifan
4.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass. Pours jet black with a small light brown head.
Smells very nice, getting nice sweet malts, coffee aromas coming through from roasted barley, also some dark chocolate.
Taste very similar to smell. At first I'm getting sweet dark malts, and chocolate flavors, then the some bitterness from the roasted barley. This is how RIS's are supposed to taste this beer sets the standard for a "regular" RIS.
Feels nice and smooth and creamy with just the right amount of carbonation. Goes down nice and easy without a hint of alcohol.

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

Pours a nice bold head which retained well. The midnight black appearance is just what I had expected in a stout. The nose has hints of chocolate, espresso , and blackberry. This is such a smooth stout. Has a nice creamy texture to it. It tastes as it smells, rich chocolate and coffee notes. Sweet in the front, smooth on the way down with a ever so slight bitter finish. I advise everyone to try this one. Will become a regular on my shelf. This is a don't miss brew.

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

appearnace - Black in color with a decent side head and it left some lace on the glass.

smell - Chocolate, java, roasted malt.

taste - mmmm lots of coffee and chocolate here, and ending with some bitterness from the hops.

mouthfeel - Medium body.

drinkability - Nice drinking beer , recommend a try.

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.

Photo of holycrapamoly
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
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!

Photo of dasenebler
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
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.

Photo of AChamberlain
3.91/5  rDev -9.1%
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.

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.

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.

Photo of Thorpe429
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
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.

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.

Photo of taylorhamrick
3.89/5  rDev -9.5%
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.

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.

Photo of jdhilt
3.66/5  rDev -14.9%
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.

Photo of JamesP123
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
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.

Photo of rayjay
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
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!

Photo of littlekidlover
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
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.

Photo of Sean9689
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
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.

Photo of Bcaulin
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
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.

Photo of LordAdmNelson
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
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.

Photo of PSUBeerman
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
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.

Photo of ReadyFireAim
4.68/5  rDev +8.8%
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!

Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 10,717 ratings.