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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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10,527 Ratings

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Ratings: 10,527
Reviews: 3,440
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.23%
Wants: 378
Gots: 1,704 | 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:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 01-18-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (22) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 10,527 | Reviews: 3,440 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of yossarian14
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

No light getting through this thick dark dark brown stout. Smells of dark heavily roasted malts. Tastes of roasted espresso beans and bitter chocolate. For me, the mouthfeel and drinkability of this hearty meal are where it shines. So creamy smooth with enough carbonation to remind you that this is beer. Would you like another? Yes please.

Photo of Llewellyn9
4.6/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I'm an old hat when it comes to imperial stouts, and this is a trusty stand by.

poors beautifully, impenetrably dark brown, nearly black with hits of red. head is a pillow of tan goodness. nice lace, but not as much as i would like.

the smell is a testament to the power of malt. Dark, roasted and beguiling, with a hint of hops; coffee and chocolate to boot.

see smell above, and add the fact that that i'm weeping as i type this...

like carbonated molasses, and i mean that in the in the best possible way.

here we reach a dilemma, do i love imperial stouts, F*CK YES!!! could i drink them all night?? probably not, even if they are god... uh, i mean, good.

epilogue: i made a black and tan with this and pliny the elder. needless to say, i've put in an order for a new set of taste buds...

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

Pitch black with a fluffy, chunky, light brown head, thick lacing. Smell: sweet, dark fruit, roasted malts, milk chocolate, cocoa, black licorice, alcohol is well hidden in the background alongside grassy hops. Taste: roasted, caramel, burnt, chocolate flavors with hints of dark fruit and rich coffee, with a complimentary alcohol warmth. Sweetness is decently balanced with citric, grassy, earthy hops. Full bodied, slick, slightly syrupy/creamy (more so on nitro tap). A rich stout with well hidden alcohol, one of the more drinkable RIS around.

Photo of Atlas1
4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Love me some Old Rasputin.

Poured into a belgian snifter glass, this beer is pitch black with a thick, light brown head on top. Good foam retention and lace. The nose is dense with strong caramel, licorice, coffee, chocolate, molasses, dark cherries, candied sugar, fig and other assorted fruits. Very complex interlay of malt and hops, although the hops take a back seat in the aroma. The taste is rich and satisfying, but also well-balanced. Coffee is heavy, as is a chocolate/cherry flavor up front in the mouth. Good lingering coffee bitterness at the end. Dry finish in the mouthfeel really rounds things out nicely.

A readily drinkable imperial Russian stout. And, given the fact that it's accessible in most major markets around the country, it's even more appealing. Totally accessible for beer geeks and neophytes alike in my opinion. A great intro to the style, and a wonderful example of what all imperial stouts should strive for.

Photo of Buebie
2.7/5  rDev -37.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured from a 12oz brown bottle with no freshness date, into a snifter.
Color is pitch black with no color to be found. 3 finger creamy brown head, sits there and sits there. Big thick clumps of lace rings around the glass. Retention is outstanding.

Great big sweet chocolate aroma of the knose. Some grainy earthy aromas, mixed with hints of grassy hops.
Oh that sweet milk chocolate aroma is intoxicating.
No alcahol fumes off the aroma.

More carbonation than anticipated, mouthfeel is somwhat thin for an RIS. Yet there is still an inky like texture. Bitter chocolate grainy flavors. The sweetness in the aroma is now nowhere to be found. This is quite bitter. Kind of a chalky aspirin flavor at the swallow. Some alcahol warming at this point.
Becoming increasingly bitter with hints of spicy hops at the lingering finish.

It was a terrific beer, until I took a sip. Then it became an ok beer for the style. Way too much carbonation, not thick and creamy either.

Photo of Gmann
3.97/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours the color of used motor oil, nice fluffy brown head that settles slowly into a cap. The aroma is of dark roasted coffee, bittersweet chocolate, burnt wood, and a touch of grape sweetness. All big and bold. The flavor is of freshly ground coffee beans, roasted chocolate, some smoke/burnt wood, vanilla and rum notes, and bad vodka?. The feel is a bit harsh for my liking. The body is nice and chewy and there is a nice smoothness to it but there is also a raw booziness that I am not fond of. Not a red wine booziness but hard alcohol booziness. Like I mentioned before, kind of reminds me of bad vodka out of a plastic jug. Definitely a big and bold RIS, great roasted malt and chocolate malt flavors but the hard booziness is getting to me a bit.

Photo of germanbeer1
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Excellent dark color with a tan head that gives off strong scents of chocolate, mocha and some malts. I particularly enjoyed this imperial stout, because even though the ABV is 9%, it is very difficult to recognize any traces of alcohol. It has a nice clean finish and doesn't leave any offensive after-tastes. I would definitely drink Old Rasputin again.

Photo of angelmonster
3.16/5  rDev -26.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a huge chocolate head about 1 and quarter inch. Pitch black in color with nice head retention and lacing through out.

Smells of rich chocolate , slight coffee and alcohol

Tastes of some chocolate and coffee. Strong alcohol taste up front with a medium bitter aftertaste

Has low to medium carbonation with a bitter mouth feel towards the end

Beer was overwhelming, too strong with the chocolate/bitter combo. Couldnt possibly drink more than one at a time. Beer is very highly rated, this was my first Imperial Stout , maybe im not accustomed to this style.

Edit - I've had this beer more over the past year and im still not very impressed with it, will age some and try again

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

My friend Brian gave me this because he thought I would like it. He was right. Cheers Brian!

A: Proud looking stout. Poured an extremely large, really dark coffee stained bubbly head. Surprised by how audible the carbonation was. Lovely oily black liquid with a nice amount of ruby red showing through against the light. Lacing is great but doesn't really stick. Head dissipates to a thin dusting and eventually to a ring.

S: For me, the big malt and alcohol strength came across loudest at first. Coffee was very dominant throughout. From time to time, I got a slight phenolic reading too.

T: Massive roasted chocolate malt taste. Strong coffee, anice, licorice & dark fruit. It is not all bitter though, there is also some crystal type sweetness there too. The alcohol was pretty well masked at first but it started coming through as sherry or port toward the end of the drink. The aftertaste was a little too acidic for me but moved swiftly into a lasting bitter coffee and hop that was pleasing. Nice and chewy with plenty of complexity to keep you thinking.

M: Full bodied. Slickness that coats the mouth. Generally very smooth and creamy apart from the liveliness of the carbonation.

D: In the spirit of it being imperial, I felt like it was a very rich and high quality RIS. It was lovely and warming. Rasputin is a great label for it - it certainly had a mysterious aspect to it. I don't find this style highly drinkable, I like to have one once in a while. Having said that, it was an easy drink to put to rest. A fine brew that I'll happily pick up again in future.

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

(Bottle) The" pop" sound from the bottle cap is very inviting and calming; there is carbonation! Some haze rising from the bottleneck seconds after. The pour is dark brown with some mahogany notes as well as a dark reddish hint. In the glass, the beer looks darn black. On top of everything, you get a one finger high, medium brown head. The first thing that hits you ones you sniff the beer is a massive, 50/50 blend of dark caramel and deluxe-ish, dark creamy chocolate. Higher, more burned tones of blackcurrant/tar-like liquorice, bitter cocoa, deep caramelized brown sugar and black coffee beans/aromatic espresso. The hop profile in this beer is becoming more extreme for every year. I have stored this beer for more then one year and the aroma hops is still full of citric/grapefruity and resiny notes. The alcohol is also impressive; not too sharp nor too aggressive, it just adds more elegance to the nose. A light dark fruitiness is lurking in the background. The roast is dry and the caramel is sweet - just perfect. The flavour is a mix of elegant roasted and burned malts with tones of dark chocolate, dark caramel, black coffee/espresso, liquorice, tar and asphalt. The hops bring obvious notes of citrus and resin, but there is also some room for earth and grass. The mouthfeel is round, smooth and light silky with a soft, easy carbonation. A dark fruity touch of prunes and dry raisins. The aftertaste is noting less the stellar with a touch of citrus, dry coffee/cocoa roast and a light sweet port hint. Medium to full bodied. This beer is has a perfect malt profile. The hops a bit too tart, still fantastic!

Photo of 6stringfunk
4/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer was poured into a pint glass from the bottle.

Appearance: Dark and black like a moonless night with a tan head.

Smell: Malts and chocolate

Taste: A bitter-sweet dark chocolate taste that I really liked. Coffee.

Mouthfeel: I like the balance of carbonation and body of this beer. Very satisfying going in and down.

Drinkability: Just recently acquired a taste for beer, and this is one of my favorites so far.

Photo of tbart428
2.88/5  rDev -33%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

The beer pours pitch black. The head is light brown when first poured then settles to a off white colored foam. The smell is of roasted grain but all in all not much of a smell. The first taste is intense roasted flavors followed by a intense bitterness of hops.Neither one of the intense flavors in this beer are all that appealing to me. As I drink this beer the drinkability of this beer is decreasing with each sip. The beer is increadibly roasty at first then it transitions into a very bitter flavor from the hops and then it finishes with alcohol. The beer is intense in the mouth it is increadibly rough with the bittering hops. Overall the beer is a good night cap beer that is ggod to drink once in awhile. Compared to other RIPS it is slightly better than average. Worth trying and would buy again. I live in Portland Maine and buy this beer off tap at Novre Res and have to say off tp this beer is increadible. The flavors are subdued a lot and there is more of a balanced flavor. To end this review worth trying nothing amazing but is pretty good.

Photo of dippy
3.94/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It was a dark and stormy beer...Brew was dark and had a rocky light brown head attachec. left an amazing lace on the glass documenting every sip.

Smell was roasty. Slight sweetness.

The taste was espresso. All roastiness. Like coffee grounds. Slight background sweetness like dark fruit.

I liked this beer. I could drink it all day, but I am scared of what my poop would look like the next day. It is the right time of year for it. It was smooth and mellow. Rocking you gently into drunkenness

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

Pours dark brown with nice bubbly tan head. Smell - cocoa, dark chocolate and coffee with hint of caramel. Very strong nice aroma. Taste - chocolate is huge here plus some coffee bitterness. There are some citrusy notes as well. Alcohol is noticeable but not overhelming. Mouthfeel - full body, very thick, good carbonation. It's a good drinker for the style, I probably can manage to have couple of those.
Overall - great beer, my favorite Russian Imperial Stout so far. I'm glad it is in my local store now.

Photo of sweetbrew82
4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass:

P: Pours a very dark brown from this cool ass looking bottle, and sits nearly opaque black in the glass. The tannish colored light brown head is about 1 ½ inches deep, with tiny bubbles frolicking about. Not great head retention, probably due to the high ABV, but actually pretty decent considering. Fits the bill of an RIS.

A: Big whiffs reveal the scents of bitter-sweet chocolate, coffee, molasses, roasted malts, and a nice hop presence as well. Not as robust as I was hoping for, though.

T: The chocolate reigns supreme here, followed by the coffee. The hops make their arrival about halfway in and threaten to overtake the regime, as a nice amount of hop spice kicks down the door and introduces itself. The balance that is subsequently achieved here is superb. Great roasted malts upfront, followed by the hops which levels the playing field and provides a nice and spicy bite on the tongue on its retreat. The more I drink it, though, the hops seem to overstep their boundaries and get in the way of the RIS show a little too much. Still, this is well done and very tasty!

M: I would classify the mouthfeel of Old Rasputin as full-bodied, chewy, rich, and an absolutely pleasantly creamy treat for the palate.

D: Personally, I could drink this one as a session beer, but then again I love me some stout!

Notes: The Old Rasputin provides a nice balance between the roasted chocolate and coffee malts, and the hop bitterness. Although it's a little too hoppy for my tastes, it's still a real winner in my book! And a great QPR beer as well (4-pack for only $7.99). For anyone who loves stouts, and especially Russian Imperial Stouts, this one should be on your short list of beers that you must indulge in.

Photo of ljbrisson
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a black coffee color into a pint glass, with a thin sandy-colored head which reduces to a thin ring and leaves wisps of lacing throughout the drink. Aroma is coffee, dark chocolate, roasted grain, espresso beans, a little bit of fruit. Mouthfeel is slick, chewy, coats the tongue, with good carbonation, good balance between medium-heavy body and medium carbonation. Taste is roasted grain up front, with coffee, vanilla, dark chocolate, cocoa, charred oak, and a dry finish. As it warms, wood flavor becomes more prevalent, as well as a little alcohol warmth, although not overpowering. Drinkability is high despite the 9% ABV because of how well it is hidden. Overall this is a great brew and I would try again.

Photo of mgaddy
4.62/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Amazing. One of my favorite cold weather beers.
It is so good. You have to go out and try a bottle of this. You just have to.

Appearance. Beautiful dark, nearly black with a tan head that retains incredibly well throughout the entire glass, leaving lacing behind the entire way.

Smell. Chocolatey goodness. Maltiness. Some hints of other great aromas that i can't put my finger on.

Taste. Incredible. More chocolate and coffee flavors. Not overly bitter.

Mouthfeel. Delicious. I want to drink this stuff all the time. So smooth and creamy.

Drinkability. Absolutely drinkable. Check this out if you haven't already.

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

A - black and oily reminds me of spending the night in a cave

S - chocolate, tobacco, burnt coffee and absolutely wonderful

T - tastes much like it smells but with a slight alcohol burn

M - heavy and silky could tone down the carbonation, would like to try this on cask

D - easy to drink and very easy to forget the high abv

this is my favorite RIS its easily accessible, reasonably priced, and delicious.

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

A pitch black liquid poured into my snifter with a great tan head that holds up very well and leaves behind great lacing down the sides of the glass. There is also some carbonation moving its way through the inky blackness that can be seen as bubbles on the side of the glass.

The aroma comes through as rich mocha, coffee, toffee, molasses and malt sweetness. All this is balanced very well and smells delicious.

There is an intense bitterness followed by a mild alcohol burn when I take my first swigs. As the beer gets to a better temperature the rich mocha is noticeable with a lingering roasted coffee bitterness on the back end. The molasses notes and a good hop presence are also within the folds of this beer's character profile.

This mouthfeel is, of course, full-bodied and it's also very rich and creamy with a good play on the tongue thanks to the carbonation and mild alcohol burn. The 9% ABV makes it hard to have too many of these but at least it's only a 12oz bottle. Sipping slowly and enjoying this beer, I could easily go for a few more on a cold night like tonight.

Photo of WakeandBake
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Typical dark black stout color with a huge creamy coco head that lasted a long time and left lacing all the way down.Aroma is of coco,coffee,a hint of tobacco and by golly a whiff of hops.The flavor of this brew blew me away.Just the right amounts of all the goodies,alcohol,coffee,coco,hops,and I keep getting a hint of fresh tobacco either in the aroma or flavor but in a good way mind you,very balanced.Creamy mouthfeel,with tiny amount of carbonation and a little hop kiss at the end.

I drank two of these bad boys from a mug while doing the last of my yard work for the year in the falling snow. My mission is to find more of this and soon. I deem this "DA BOMB"

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

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Grand Marnier snifter. Impressive fluffy dark tan/rust colored head sits on top and lasts for several minutes, good carbonation with beautiful creamy lace on the glass. The lace sort of disappears half way through the glass. Smell is of dark chocolate, espresso/Dark roasted coffee, mild alcohol aroma on the end.
T&M-Taste is absolutely outstanding! Mocha seems to be the best explanation. Loads of bittersweet chocolate, Dark Roasted coffee with a semi sweet kind of finish. Mouthfeel is quite creamy, leaving a great balance of sweetness & bitterness all around. Drinkability is also quite nice. At 9% I could definitly not pound these, but drinking 2 of these consecutively wouldn't be a problem. IMO this a widely available world class beer that can certainly run with the big boys within it's category, a must try for anyone who enjoys a super high quality RIS.

Photo of GeoffM
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pretty standard stout coloring and head; beautiful opaque, inky black, impossible to see through, head is tan and rocky, moderately sized. Head diminishes a little faster than I'd like or would have expected, but the lacing is good.

Smell - Malty. Very very malty. Chocolate, coffee, something remotely chalky (for lack of a better word) but not unpleasantly so.

Taste - Wow. Seductively smooth. Moderately bitter with an excellent, and I mean excellent, finish. This is such a pleasant beer, wonderful mouthfeel. I sip it because I want to savor it, not because it's too bitter; in other words, quite drinkable. Malts are apparent, to say the least. Just awesome.

Overall - The only other Imperial Stout I've had was Yeti's Imperial Stout from Great Divide Brewing Company (another favorite around here, apparently), and this one is so much more approachable and drinkable. The alcohol is hidden well, and it sneaks up on you, so be careful. Awesoime brew.

Photo of Kirkles
4.78/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Strong, thick and smooth, everything a RIS should be.

I got this on nitro-tap at Magnolias in Purcellville, VA.

A: Pitch black with an amazing head. Just looking at it built my expectations to an immense level.

S: Strong. The malt hit me first, with hints of coffee. It built great anticipation for the first taste.

T: Wonderfully complex. I felt like I discovered something new each sip I took.

M: This was my favorite part. I buried the majority of my face in the head and took a good draw. It was thick, full and smooth. It was absolutely everything that I hoped for.

D: It's a fantastic brew, but so strong and thick that it fills you up quick. Not that this is a bad thing.

Overall, within my top 3 beers. Definitely the best RIS I've ever had.

Photo of BeerlyHuman
4.55/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle to pint glass. BLACK! Perfect example of this style. One of the best! A must drink for the stout lover!! Wonderful nose appeal and equally as pleasant on the palate. Nice coffee chocolate flavors you would expect. Smooth upfront. Don't drink a dozen!!! Nice sipper!! Awesome brew!!!

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

This put the stout in stout. WOW!!! Very black beer with a nice, dark brown head that left nice lacing on the sides of the glass. Smelled mostly of coffee and dark malts. Taste started with strong coffee with a bit of alcohol, followed by lots of hop bitterness. The mouthfeel is very smooth and creamy. This is a very good, strong, sipping beer. A few of these and you will be wrecked so watch out.

Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 10,527 ratings.