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Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout - North Coast Brewing Co.

Old Rasputin Russian Imperial StoutOld Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

8,391 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 8391
Reviews: 3289
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.23%


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
Ratings: 8,391 | Reviews: 3,289 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of DUNDERBAK
DUNDERBAK

Florida

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

Its been on tap for a while here in Tampa. Pours dark ,rich and thick, and black, not as much ruby in the color as I would expect. Creamy head retention better on co2 blend than straight co2. Can't decide which I like better.
Complexity is the key word, black pat malts, coffee, maybe carmel gives the nose its fill of raisins and plumbs.
Esters of alcohol are there, the finish is a little sharp with a contradictory sweetness lingering on the tongue. Carbonation is low, mouth feel is enhanced when on blend. This is my choice for a RIS however The Yeti is right behind.

Serving type: on-tap

07-29-2007 20:04:35 | More by DUNDERBAK
Photo of LeftyBWS
LeftyBWS

Pennsylvania

3.93/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

On tap at the Publick House, Brookline, MA. Served in a smaller glass, somewhere between a shot and a pint.
A: When it arrived in front of me, I could see three layers. The bottom third was very deep, dark brown; in the middle was a much lighter, café au lait color brown; on top was the very creamy and thick head. As a minute or so passed, the dark brown gobbled up the middle layer and the head very slowly but surely receded. An intriguing effect, to say the least.
S: Smells of roasted coffee, chocolate, and perhaps some sweet toffee. There were also notes of raisins, and maybe a buried cherry flavor, like chocolate-covered fruit.
T: Very imperial and stoutish. I can definitely taste the coffee, chocolate and raisiny notes. Somewhat bitter mid- and aftertaste.
M: Thick, creamy and heavy. Just what I expected.
D: This roughly half-pint was plenty for me. It tastes great and is a beer I would get again, but any more than a pint would take work, especially with a meal.

Serving type: on-tap

07-20-2007 03:21:18 | More by LeftyBWS
Photo of largadeer
largadeer

California

4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Nitro-tap, served in a tulip glass.

Appearance: Pitch-black with a huge, dense and frothy nitro head.

Smell: Dark chocolate and burnt grains.

Taste & mouthfeel: Unbelievably rich and creamy. Baker's chocolate, espresso, toast and chocolate pudding. Hops are very much present in the finish, providing a balancing bitterness.

Drinkability: Not necessarily sessionable, but as close as I've found in an imperial stout. Despite the high ABV, this is incredibly smooth and drinkable.

Serving type: nitro-tap

07-16-2007 23:17:52 | More by largadeer
Photo of akahn
akahn

Massachusetts

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

Pours opaque dark brown with not much of a lasting head, but good lace. The smell of this beer is astounding--I get a really clear licorice smell from it, which is great. The flavor is solid as well, sweet, smooth, creamy, almost reminds me of an Oreo cookie somehow. Really drinkable for this style--bitterness is in check, alcohol isn't even detectable!

Serving type: on-tap

05-14-2007 03:01:39 | More by akahn
Photo of SacoDeToro
SacoDeToro

California

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

On tap at the North Coast Brewpub across the street from the brewery.

The beer poured a deep coal black with a small brown head.

The aroma of the beer was full of rich coffee, roasted malts, dark chocolate, and some faint vanilla.

The flavor of the beer was full of intense flavors that transitioned well from one to another. Coffee - Chocolate - Rich roasted malts. The hops were there in good presence, but not too intense.

The mouthfeel was thick, but not too heavy. It coated your mouth with a ton of flavor. The carbonation seemed dialed in well.

This is a great beer and a very drinkable RIS. It's an American classic and the beer that brought this style back from the brink of extinction. Cheers to Rasputin for not dying easily! In fact, he's still very well alive an kicking...

Serving type: on-tap

03-22-2007 18:46:56 | More by SacoDeToro
Photo of travelfrog
travelfrog

New York

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

I tried this interesting stout at my favorite local pizza pub/watering hole. It was on draught, served in a brandy snifter of all things.

Appearance was very good, with a nice creamy dark complexion and creamy head (perhaps exaggerated somewhat by the dimensions of my snifter). There were a few air bubbles mixed in, and the beverage was less opaque than I would have expected.

Aroma was good, again perhaps concentrated by the snifter. Notes of malt and chocolate.

The flavor will come as quite a surprise to Guinness drinkers (remember this is Imperial Stout... ;). A bold combination of sherry, malt, coffee, and chocolate. Pleasant, lingering aftertaste of caffe corretto.

Mouthfeel was excellent: smooth and creamy with no burn or cloying on the roof of the mouth.

I also have to rate the drinkability quite highly for a stout, though it is certainly best sipped rather than gulped. I would not have known it was 9% alcohol if I hadn't read it on this page.

Serving type: on-tap

03-11-2007 12:31:05 | More by travelfrog
Photo of weeare138
weeare138

Pennsylvania

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

On nitro at Capones...
Appears black with a cascading brown head that sticks around like a creamy, floating top. Tons of typical-of-nitro chunks of lacing are left all around the glass but this is just a marvel to look at.
Smell is of bitter baker's cocoa, coffee, molasses, along with a touch of fruit and bitter citrus hops. Really nice.
Taste is of the mentioned aromas with a yeasty fruitiness that compliments the dark malts wonderfully. It really comes together well, especially on the nitro-tap...never seen it on nitro before.
Mouthfeel is full bodied, creamy, rich, fulfilling with just the right amount of sweetness, roastiness, and bitters all working together to a finish that is chewy and delightful.

Serving type: nitro-tap

02-08-2007 22:25:48 | More by weeare138
Photo of bigone4
bigone4

Rhode Island

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

Poured a dark black with slight ruby color when back lit. Nice creamy tanish off-white head. Massive lacing down the whole pint glass. Smells of alcohol esters mixed with a strong tone of roasted and chocolate malts. Slight hints of caramel and coffee flavors in the nose as well. Smooth rolling chocolate and roasted malt flavor. The alcohol taste is quite strong in the finish. Has a rather dry finish with a definite alcohol tone. Quite roasty and lots of bold malts in the mix. Nice full body and very drinkable. This one certainly has the making of a true imperial stout. I enjoyed it thoroughly.

Serving type: on-tap

02-01-2007 01:57:14 | More by bigone4
Photo of sjambok1
sjambok1

Nevada

4.68/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Aah, before I get to the actual review, let me say finding this brew has been one of the high points of my beer drinking experiences. It's hard to beat something thats this good.

A: Dark as cole, poured with a two finger head of dark brown, like treebark.

S: Strong, nutty, with plenty of hops and a hint of coffe.

T: Strong as any stout I've ever had, close to perfect. Tastes of coffe, hops and a very earthy taste.

MF: Excellent. Smooth and full

D: Great, but strong. Good beer for occasions, but if I were to be drinking more than 2, Id have drink Red Seal

Serving type: growler

01-29-2007 18:55:33 | More by sjambok1
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IceAce

California

3.93/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark enough that the midday sun cannot begin to manage to punch through. Foam collar is deep tan and short-lived w/o lacing.

Nose is alcoholic with deeply roasted malt conveying dark unsweetened chocolate, toffee, and freshly ground coffee beans.

Entry is creamy and possesses a dry, chalky mouthfeel. Midtaste leads with hot unhidden alcohol before it settles in with a blanket of chocolate. The finish sports a fleeting hoppy note, more chocolate, and a warming glow.

Serving type: on-tap

12-26-2006 19:48:39 | More by IceAce
Photo of scottoale
scottoale

California

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

Fresh on nitro and served in a pint glass...WOW, a beautiful imperial stout of black-ass brown with incredibly thick and creamy, cocoa butter lace. The 1" thick head forms after a beautiful cascading display occurs, the kind that only nitrogen carbonation is capable of...buttercream froth. Fat, juicy rings of the stuff mark each sip of this fine looking brew.

Burnt and roasty dark malt smell is bluntly bitter and comprised of dark, black French Roast coffee and a heap of baker's chocolate...breakfast or dessert anyone?

The intake of a very short lasting sweetness is anise or black licorice if you will, followed by instant roast bitterness...an awesome tasty dark malt that is mostly black French Roast coffee (nearly espresso) with heavy bitter chocolate notes...rich and roasty to the finish. Very tasty I.S. with a smooth and creamy big body, accompanied by a well hidden, high dose of you guessed it...alcohol.

Great appearance, good smelling, excellent taste and mouthfeel lead up to an imperial stout that is all too drinkable...especially when on tap and charged with nitrogen...love this stuff!

Serving type: nitro-tap

12-22-2006 01:01:29 | More by scottoale
Photo of Franchise
Franchise

Oregon

4.7/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This offering from North Coast pours a onyx color leaving a tan head that is thick and luxurious. The aroma is strong hop citrus and earthy licorise feel followed by a sweet chocolate essence. The taste starts syrupy bitter with herbal hops that are abundant in this gem. The taste continues with marshmallow, chocolate, coffee roasted beans come though this brew. The finish is bitter espresso, but that caramel cooked sugar sweetness helps balance this big bitter beer. Overall this is an outstaning stout one that should be in my fridge year round. I paired this baby with a gourmet chocolate chip cookie and it was delicious.

Serving type: on-tap

12-11-2006 22:06:12 | More by Franchise
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 memory
memory

Pennsylvania

3.95/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap that laid a nice half inch head. Appeared dark coffee with a bitter chocolate note to it's nose. Taste typical of an Imperial stout sweetness but this to me was a real dessert ale because I could only drink one or two at the most.
Had a full bittersweet taste that left a long pleasant taste on the tongue.
A nice stout for desert after a meal.

Serving type: on-tap

10-09-2006 02:33:03 | More by memory
Photo of Mebuzzard
Mebuzzard

Colorado

4.75/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was served at cellar temperature at Falling Rock tap house in Denver.
Dark, black body with dark tan head of two fingers which lowered to one finger and laced nicely.
Smell of coffee and chocolate with malt roast and biscuit.
Taste was wonderful. Just the right balance between coffee, chocolate, hops and malt. Nothing dominated which rendered the feel smooth and soft. The alcohol presented itself and then retreated into the flavors.
Very easy drinking for a RIS. Very good.

Serving type: on-tap

09-26-2006 21:02:38 | More by Mebuzzard
Photo of nectarkeeper
nectarkeeper

Georgia

3.63/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Old Rasputin on tap at the Brickstore on a lazy tuesday afternoon.
this beast of a beer poured out velvety, greasy, dark and mysterious, with a tannish head that held up all the way down to the last sip.

i found marshmallows and smoke in the front, with burnt dark chocolate and dried dark fruits going down. halfway in, the dark-fruit character really took over, still laced with that nice bitter-burnt tingle. overall, really nicely balanced and totally enjoyable, but slow drinking with that thick-as-night mouthfeel...and one was plenty!

Serving type: on-tap

06-04-2006 16:39:27 | More by nectarkeeper
Photo of DogFood11
DogFood11

California

3.63/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

What would you expect from nitro and old rasputin....well the appearance is lovely, dark , rich, frothy, excellent retention...etc.

I found that the nitro detracted from what is truly good about this brew. Normally this brew has a nice hop presence, almost over the top. Roasty, charred and good. On the nitro, while all these characterstics are there, just expect them to be dumbed down.

Notes: excellent beer. Why is it on nitro? No reason, in my opinion this is just a way to market it as a guinness...I heard this many times throughout the night...bartender " its similair to a guiness but slightly stronger" ...ok.

Serving type: nitro-tap

05-13-2006 04:37:38 | More by DogFood11
Photo of bkett01
bkett01

Massachusetts

3.83/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured nearly black with a minor head which refused to leave the surface. A dull coffee/chocolate smell with a hint of hops is present. The taste is quite the combination of flavors ranging from coffee to fruit. I noted a smooth chocolate start balanced with cherry/coffee/and dark roasted malts that finished with a clearly evident hop character. I would prefer more hops over the coffee, but still an enjoyable brew here. Very interesting combination, and a great start to the "new to me" world of imperial stouts.

Serving type: on-tap

03-16-2006 04:53:55 | More by bkett01
Photo of tattooedtolley
tattooedtolley

Virginia

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

OnTap thanks to Baja Bean, I have had it in the bottle as well but this will be my review of the on tap version.

Appearance: Super black, no light coming through this beer. Frothy tan head lived briefly and left tons of tan lacing.

Smell: Mostly roasted malts and some chocolate. Slight coffee aroma.

Taste: Sweet maltiness of the roasted malts with some chocolate. Some hops present which helps calm down the sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Big body on this one, which is certainly expected after watching the pour.

Drinkability: Obviously not a session beer, but not a bad bar price tag and certainly not over the top in price at the beer store. I like this beer very much and recommend it to anyone who likes stouts.

Serving type: on-tap

03-08-2006 17:27:10 | More by tattooedtolley
Photo of eph
eph

Arizona

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

There is a fabulous bar out in western Massachusetts that caries this on tap. It was served in a goblet and was a thick black color with a dark brown head. It smelled of roasted coffee, almonds, chocolate, and a hint of alcohol. This beer has a good heavy mouth feel with a mellow carbonation that gives it an almost creamy feel when you swallow. It has a thick chocolate malt taste with a few shots of espresso to boot. After I swallowed I noticed a bit of a sweet dull fruit finish to it, not overly hoppy for sure. This beer was a great experience, I would recommend it as a sipping beer to fully enjoy... and the 9.0 abv has a way of sneaking up on you if you over drink this brew. Enjoy!

Serving type: on-tap

03-07-2006 13:43:47 | More by eph
Photo of tozerm
tozerm

Washington

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

Wow! I sampled this from a jockey box on nitro at a beer festival. Talk about a glass of pure love! The head was thick, dense, and creamy. I loved the floor show of bubbles cascading down the glass. Roasted malt, chocolate, coffee, this tasted absolutely wonderful. Rich mouthfeel that hit every single taste bud in my mouth. It's good in the bottle, but if you get a chance get it on tap!

Serving type: nitro-tap

02-19-2006 01:20:00 | More by tozerm
Photo of yelterdow
yelterdow

New Jersey

3.7/5  rDev -14%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Andy's, couldn't resist a growlerfill this weekend.

Served in an oversize snifter between cellar and fridge temperature.

A- Flat... straight up dark brown, without a head at all. The thin rim that encircles the glass leaves behind minimal lacing, with windblown surface streaks which adorn the crown.

S- Rich, deep, molasses-soaked licorice and chocolate... pure and liquid, and very intense. Very strong... the forecast calls for inebriation, if we are not careful.

T- A chocolately, richly deep, molasses-and-malt driven experience, which detours into a nicely balanced hoppy bitterness. Drying, flowery, and complete, we come full circle from the initial dessert-like debut.

M/D- Too smooth for the ultimate in roundness... the sheer strength of this beer calls for some balance in the mouthfeel, but it simply fades into obscurity. Strong but watery, any inkling of carbonation is what's lacking. This beer is satisfying, yet I definitely prefer the bottled offering. Unless this growler went flat in one day, I suggest the widely available four-pack bottles.

Serving type: growler

02-13-2006 03:41:05 | More by yelterdow
Photo of sulldaddy
sulldaddy

Connecticut

4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I am sampling this at Kclingers with some friends and family. The beer arrives in a small pilsener glass. The beer is pitch black with a thin creamy tan head that leaves tight latticework as it receds slowly.
Aroma is roasated malt and chocolatewith some dark fruit, mostly raisins. First sip reveals a fairly thick body and super mild carbonation.
The flavor is deep and robust with dark bittersweet chocolate and some roasted malt. There is a bit of coffee and some dark fruit poking around in back as well. The coffee takes over on the finish and lingers very smooth and easy to drink. The alcohol is well hidden in this treat. Watch out if you have a few!

Serving type: on-tap

01-03-2006 04:51:29 | More by sulldaddy
Photo of drewmprs
drewmprs

California

3.33/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

First whiff was of chocolate coffee and alcohol. This was definitely a thinking man's beer, not one meant for chugging. I had it after a few erdinger's and it brought a welcome change to my palate. This beer is a bit too strong for me, I like my stouts a little smoother like rogue's shakespeare. Rasputin had a bit of a gamey taste to it, like uncooked rabbit and veal. It was a pleasure to drink this beer on tap, i like watching the bartender do the double pour. Bartender also told me this beer goes well as a half and half or black and tan mixer. I don't know about that, the complexity of this beer is unmatched, and i wouldn't want to sully it with Harp's or Bass.

Serving type: on-tap

12-16-2005 20:24:30 | More by drewmprs
Photo of Dithyramb
Dithyramb

Maryland

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

The evil monk was sampled on tap in a proleterian pint glass in Frisco's in Columbia. Poured an opaque black, like the heart of the wicked one. Like the Neva River itself, it was impassable to the light of day. A thick, lucious dark tan head and excellent retention/lacing stealthily masked the high ABV.

Aroma was mostly of bitter roasted malts, with just a bit of sweetness in the background. Interesting, it was just as complex served slightly chilled on tap as it was cellar temperature at home. Cream and sugar laden roasted coffee was followed by bitter chocolates. Toffee in the middle was literally beat down with some ashy coffee grounds onthe finish. Hefty, strong, memorable.

Bitter and acidic at times, it still finished like a nicely done cream and sugar coffee. Smoother than one would expect, and very drinkable.

Overall: Razzy was drugged, poisoned, beaten and shot, but only died after being wrapped in a carpet and thrown in the river. He grew from a womanizing peasant thief to a “holy man” helping the czar’s family with both the needs of a hemophilic son and the decisions for war with Austria. This is a beer that weirdly does it's namesake proud.

Serving type: on-tap

12-13-2005 23:24:08 | More by Dithyramb
Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 8,391 ratings.