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
95
world-class

3,495 Reviews
THE BROS
100
world-class

(Read More)
Reviews: 3,495
Hads: 11,168
rAvg: 4.28
pDev: 8.88%
Wants: 466
Gots: 2,212 | FT: 56
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.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 3,495 | Hads: 11,168
Photo of Zorro
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a super black brew, a 500-watt bulb shows that this is clear with reddish highlights. If you have a 500 watt bulb or a Laser.

Smells sweet and malty, lots of flowery perfume too. I also smell chocolate, coffee and fruit.

Nice tastes of chocolate, and coffee. Sweeter flavors too like prunes, Nice but not quite what the Samuel Smith's version is.

Mouthfeel is very good.

Drinkable for what it is, a Beer H-bomb. (429 characters)

Photo of beervana1858
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I have probably purchased this beer 6-7 times and have been impressed by it every time. Surely there are more elite stouts out there that I have not yet found but it may just bet hat this has everything that I look for in a stout. It has a rich flavor with a slight dark chocolate taste that resonates on your tongue for quite a while after finishing. IT isn't quite sweet but it isn't overly bitter either. Overall a great stout and I will definitely keep it on the grocery list. (480 characters)

Photo of chanokokoro
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a snifter from a 12 oz bottle.

A: Black as night. Beautiful tan head, great retention

S: Robust roasted malt mixed with chocolate, coffee and a hint of vanilla.

T: Huge roasted malt that finishes in a tantalizing bitterness.

M: Perfect body. Coats the mouth like a hand in a glove. Wonderful!

O: Old Rasputin is a true classic, a truly amazing Russian Imperial Stout. (384 characters)

Photo of TrippnFiasco
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Jet black, absolutely gorgeous. Dark brown head, pours with about 3-finger head that slowly dissipates. BEAUTIFUL lacing that sticks to the glass throughout the entire drink.

S: Smells like a nice espresso, with a fairly strong smokiness. Slight alcohol bite comes through, surprising for the (relatively) low ABV for this Imperial.

T: Delicious woody, smoked maltiness. Slight hop bite coming through, separate from alcohol. Very dark, very tasty.

M: Very creamy, full-bodied. Nice smoothness

D: One glass per sitting is perfect. Very drinkable for an Imperial Stout. (578 characters)

Photo of andrewt960
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Lets start off by saying this was a weather inspired choice. Tropical Storm Hanna Has arrived and I needed something with some depth and character. This beer has it.
A: Black, with a chocolate brown head. I mean black.
S: Malty, roasted malts, slightly burnt. Not much alcoholconsidering the 9%.
T: Very nice, much more enjoyable than other I.S. that I have tried, and better than Brooklyn. Roasted, toasted, and burnt notes coming through in every sip. I think I can detect some notes of hops in the aftertaste, but not sure.
M:Carbonated. Very nice mouthfeeth for this style beer.
D: I would love to try this beer again and share it with a stout fan. My dad would have been the perfect guy to share this one with. (720 characters)

Photo of BeachBumC
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I've been wanting to try the Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout since a friend told me of it. I finally found it at Hamilton's in San Diego.

Poured out of a bottle, nice clear black color with a thick 1 inch head.

It has a very roasted smell with hints of chocolate or bourbon.

Tasting it gave an instant zing on the tip of my tongue with a medium to thick body. Flavor was almost too roasted, almost burnt, but complemented well by the chocolate/espresso taste. The flavor was lasting and stayed well on the back of the tongue to the point that I had to have another sip.

Good thing I take quick notes because this beer didn't stay in the glass very long. I'll be having many more of these! (696 characters)

Photo of jakpot
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Old Rasputin is a dark beer that brought me to a bright appreciation of beer. When my friend first shared an old Rasputin with me a few months ago, I wasn't prepared for its complex notes of chocolate, oregano, coffee, and cherry. At first, I couldn't taste these flavors at all. However, I quickly came to appreciate them in a way that brought me closer to beer. I have long been able to describe the wines that I drink, but it took a very challenging beer to force me to see beer in the same way.

I'm glad that I did. On top of its complex flavor, this beer has a great aroma. Considerably lighter than its taste, its scent smoothly compliments its balanced taste. Its mouthfeel is silky and smooth without feeling particularly heavy for a stout beer.

This beer tastes great with intense fruit, bread, red meat, sweet and spicy foods (but not just sweet or just spicy), and creamy saucy food. Don't try it with anything that isn't as balanced as this drink though. (968 characters)

Photo of seesnow3
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pour-Basically black with a medium brown head, thick, luscious and creamy head, completely opaque, thick lacing, is this crude oil? Head doesn’t hold that well but the lacing is REALLY thick

Nose-Chocolate, coffee, dark caramel malts, everything that is dark is in this beer

Palate-A little bit of sweet up front, a ton of sour and a moderate amount of bitter. Semi-sweet, almost scorched chocolate, actually only light coffee, but dark roast, incredibly dark caramel malts and grains. There is also a hint of fruity flavor

Body-Thick, creamy, heavy and syrupy, incredibly smooth and rich, luscious texture. Somehow a decent amount of effervescence. This is an incredible beer, I love this stuff and would get it again in a heartbeat. (739 characters)

Photo of Shiredave
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I just shared this beer with a friend - because his fave beer is Youngs Dbl Choc. Stout. He now has a new fave.
I wont waste time waxing poetic - Im sure it has all been posted before. This is THE Imperial stout - at least from the USofA.
Full of roasty/ toasty burnt chocolate flavor - immensley complex and drinkable with a reasonable alcohol content.
If you like robust stouts and Porters, and havent tried and Old Raspy, do yourself ( and a friend maybe) a favor and find it.
Absolutely Outstanding!!! (517 characters)

Photo of Graham5161986
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

pours a gorgeous pitch black with a thick dark tan head which has excellent retention and leaves a good amount o sticky lacing on my glass. Smell is of rich, tasty dark chocolate with a touch of caramel and some coffee notes as well. Taste is of rich, chocolate and coffee with a bitter twang of hops in the background throughout. Little hints of dark fruit, plum and cherry on the mid palate and one of the smoothest, chocolaty, yet dry finish I have ever tasted. Wow, mouthfeel is full bodied and very creamy - again, what an incredibly creamy, dry finish - beautiful. This is my first time having this beer and I'm speechless - this is an amazing RIS that I will be cellaring and would not hesitate for a second to purchase again. True class. (745 characters)

Photo of Bowdoinbeerboy
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance- Pours with very little head. Beer itself is an absolute pitch black color, no light at all escapes this beer.

Smell- Deep dark malty nose with subtle hints of alcohol.

Taste- Very complex flavors, sweet candied fruit, coffee, hint of spicyness from lovely hops. Truly delightful, alcohol leaves hint on warmth on the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel- Fills palate completely with warm dark malt flavors and its full and chompy.

Drinkability- One of the most enjoyable RIS Ive ever had this one just melts in your mouth, definitly a repeat buy. (548 characters)

Photo of Lagaffe74
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I poured it in a brandy snifter. Gorgeous deep opaque robe. Tan head that took its little time to disappear. Nose was full of roasted malts and dark chocolate. Very rich on the palate with notes of chocolate, coffee, and caramel. Nice finish. Outstanding!! (256 characters)

Photo of Thanby
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

"Black as night" really is the best way to describe it. Thick, rocky, dark tan head, some active carbonation visible. Head dies very slowly and leaves a thick coating on the glass.

Smells of rich roasted malts and chocolate. Very smoky, but not ashy like some Imperial Stouts. Hint of caramel in the background.

I think I'm in love. First taste is bold, roasted malt, followed closely by the chocolate and caramel. The perfect amount of bitterness (in my opinion) for a strong stout, coming from the roast and smokiness.

Creamy, thick body, more carbonation than I would expect but it's not unpleasant. The three main flavors just roll around on the tongue in perfect harmony. There's something about how they roasted the malt that strikes me as very pleasing, but unfortunately I don't have enough experience with stout production to know what it is.

Overall this is a stout-lover's dream. Not for a weak stomach, because it has a hefty bitterness and high ABV that shamelessly displays itself in the taste, but it is just one hell of an enjoyable drink. I was planning to follow it up with a pint of Guinness but now I'm thinking it simply won't do my taste buds justice after this. (1,188 characters)

Photo of Brewingbanjos
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Syrupy black pour with one finger of espresso crema-colored head. Nose is immediate chocolate with dark fruit behind it. The taste and mouthfeel are full and thick from front to back. Chocolate-covered dark cherries come to mind in the taste with a sustained yet subtle presence of alcohol throughout. This is truly fantastic and goes down a little too easy. I think I will have another... (389 characters)

Photo of delmarnate
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours almost black and with a syrupy appearance. Dark brown head that fades quickly. The smell is overpowering. You know what you are in for. The first sip is heavily bitter and smooth in feel. more bitterness in the aftertaste with a hint of coffee and chocolate. An excellent beer. Not for stout beginners, but everything that a stout lover wants and loves about the style. (375 characters)

Photo of ryanonline
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer is black as black gets, with a rocky thin head with moderate retention and great lacing. Looks very bubbly odd for an imperial Russian.

Smells like a delicious espresso with raisins and hops and chocolate.

Taste is the same but with the hops up front and the chocolate-espresso flavor in the finish. Sort of fruity too.

The mouthfeel is bubbly and syrupy, with a thick body. Very dry finish.

This is incredibly drinkable for a RIS. Its got a little bit much on the carbonation but otherwise it has nice body and doesn't hurt the palette to much.

Wow, I'm really impressed with old Rasputin. Its been a while since I've had stones' Russian imperial but if memory serves this ranks up there. (704 characters)

Photo of bjoyce12
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Unbelievable. Pours out black. Not brown, not deep amber, but black. Very thick foam head with staying power. Aroma is one of freshly baked dark bread. The outstanding quality of this ale is in its taste. The best comparison I can make is that it is like drinking a loaf of fresh rye bread. The rye really comes through, but with a smooth velvety texture. Any harsh bitterness of rye hops has been balanced away. You really need to sit and enjoy this one slowly. Its smoothness and balance provide a great mouthfeel. I selected a slightly lower grade for drinkability, because it is a heavy ale. Great wintertime drink. (619 characters)

Photo of leantom
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

They don't make 'em like this anymore. The beer that introduced me to the RIS. Here goes:

A: Wow. Pours pitch-black; absolutely no light gets through. The head is absolutely massive. It's dark, fluffy, and more than two inches thick. It also recedes super slowly, leaving a ton of lacing in its wake.

S: Burnt malt through and through. Lots of bitter, dark chocolate and roasted coffee. Splendid.

T: Thick and creamy roasted coffee. Burnt malt. The bitterest of dark chocolates. Rich in dark soil and tobacco. Overall, a splendid concoction.

F: Thick and creamy, like the taste. Perfect.

O: Like I said, they don't make 'em like this anymore. (667 characters)

Photo of BayerischBier
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Black crude oil colored filling slowly your glass. Remember Hitchhiker's Guide through the Galaxy's black spaceship? Shiny but absorbing the light! Some mocca/coffee colored head on top

S - a mix of chocolate and roasted coffee touches the nose. touch of alcohol makes you expect a heavy stout

T - same as the smell: chocolate and coffee reaches your taste buds, alcohol takes over and fulfills the taste experience.

M - heavy almost oily mouthfeel but well balanced carbonation

D - Great! Can I have another one? (521 characters)

Photo of beerSexualizer
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Creamy tan head with a couple fingers of volume. Black brown in colour like when midnight closes it's eyes.

Smells of fruity hops, dark chocolate, and coffee.

Tastes like black licorice that goes from subtly sweet to agressively bitter. Dark chocolate is around before the bitterness takes over. Nice lacing that thins to almost nothing as it drys.

Mouth feel is subtle then quickly errupts into an effervescent coating which follows the sweet to strong bitter profile.

Get this beer and drink it. Strong alcohol, black colour, and formidable bitterness are all staples of this style. F**k yeah. (601 characters)

Photo of Bang34
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Wow, I tried this brew after seeing it on the "Top Brews" list on this site. I have always been a fan of Stouts and being from Mendocino County, CA just one hour's drive from the birthplace of this beer, it seemed like a match made in heaven. If I could find it. A while back I remembered seeing this brew on the rack at my local Safeway. But when I finally decided to try it, guess what, it was nowhere to be found. After about a month of absence from the shelf, it was finally there. I bought 2 four-packs, just in case it disappeared again.

Now, the rating. Appearance, black, dark, stout-like, with a tanish brown head that sticks around and gives a nice creamyness and lace. The aroma, malty coffeeness comes to mind with a hint of Chocolate. Taste, creamy, chocolaty , coffee like with an after warmth of the alcohol. Even so, this is so smooth, you woul not believe that it is 8.9%.

Brewed in the historic logging and fishing town of Fort Bragg Califonia. Part of the Karate Kid III was filmed there as was the Kurt and Goldie Flick "Overboard" but it is probably most famous for being the final stop of the Skunk Train. I only whis I had found this beer sooner. Along with Anderson Valley's Barney Flats Oatmeal Stout, it is one of my favorites. Available in four packs, and with the alcohol content and thickness, believe me, that is all you will need.

I moved to Missouri about 2 1/2 years ago and really miss this beer. It is availsble in my hometown, the small Hamlet of Gualala at the local Supers and I buy it whenever I get back there. On one of my last trips home I was able to get my Mom and Step Dad to take me to lunch at the brewery and they were impressed with this brew as well.

Missouri Import laws don't let any craft Cali brews in, save Pyramid and Sierra Nevada thanks to St. Louis based AB. Man, I miss this beer. (1,855 characters)

Photo of NefariousR
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

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

A - Pours an incredibly dark black with absolutely no light visible. There's a thinnish tan head that dissipated fairly quickly.

S - Dark chocolate, malt, and some coffee notes. Overall a very nice, sweet aroma.

T - Very strong roasted coffee taste, rounded out by malty sweetness. Afterward the alcohol warms the sinuses just slightly.

M - Sticky, but not incredibly thick; medium-bodied.

D - A classic, one of the best RIS I've tasted, and at 9% ABV it is deceptively drinkable. Highly recommended for stout lovers. (574 characters)

Photo of Moooose
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Just wanted to say this is the beer that you don't drink everyday, this is a Russian imperial stout, it's a very nice beer and whoever on this forum is saying that when you pour it, a thick one inch foam layer is created and does not go away is just simply someone who knows nothing about pouring beer I ve had it so many times and poured it perfectly without having any foam, this is a great stout beer and if you like stout, this will be a nice choice the alcohol in it is 9% so 3 of them will get you a great buzz, the taste is fine too, you can easily drink it, very smooth for a stout, whoever says otherwise about the taste means they like lager because if you are that person that drinks lager all the time then stout and IPA won't taste good to you
This beer is rated in my opinion at minimum a 4.5 out of 5 (815 characters)

Photo of maedhros09
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Look: Deep black with generous frothy dark tan head that settles to a film with groups of bubbles in the middle and lacing at the edge. Sediment noted in the bottle.

Smell: Dry roastiness, perhaps some straw or dried flowers.

Taste: Very mildly sweet, roasted malt, caramel, bitter chocolate, light fruit-like acidity. Finishes with a mild bittersweetness. Alcohol is very well disguised. A fine palate of perfectly balanced pleasant flavors.

Feel: Medium-thick body with smooth mouthfeel, fine carbonation.

Overall: Definitely opens up a lot as it warms - aromas were very stifled at fridge temp. Recommend serving at cellar temp. An all-around winner - no surprises, just a very well-rounded smooth-drinking imperial stout. (729 characters)

Photo of JudgeRoughneck
4.64/5  rDev +8.4%
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. (1,432 characters)

Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 3,495 ratings.