Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine and select auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout - North Coast Brewing Co.

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.

3,540 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 3,540
Hads: 11,417
Avg: 4.27
pDev: 18.5%
Wants: 513
Gots: 2,439 | FT: 55
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 (29) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout Alström Bros
Reviews: 3,540 | Hads: 11,417
Photo of MHurley
4.34/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Pours black in color with great size tan head. Smell of toffee and raisins with hints of alcohol and chocolate with a very high and thin lacing. Very bold on taste but yet smooth with complex flavors. Great imperial stout

 221 characters

Photo of Myotus
4.07/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

LOOK: Pours with a half finger's worth of tan foam that halves itself after 35 seconds. Beer is extremely black in color. It's difficult to make out the orange tint. There is a subtle amount of rising bubbles along the sides of the glass. Lacing is high, but thin.
SMELL: Strong aromas of toffee, raisins, and plums stand out. Beyond those, lie mild aromas of molasses and coffee, subtle bittersweet chocolate, and hints of alcohol.
TASTE: Strong flavors of toffee, raisins, and plums combine to create the initial taste (as my nose would of guessed). Strong molasses flavors along with mild coffee and bittersweet chocolate eneter immediately after as initial flavors persist. As all flavors fade into the after taste, bittersweet chocolate flavors become angry and lose their sweetness and end up being very bitter.
FEEL: Full-bodied and moderately carbonated. This goes down somewhat smooth and creamy. Finishes moderately dry, though (lame!).
NOTE: Slightly too bitter for me. Loved how I couldn't taste the alcohol that my nose perceived.

 1,044 characters

Photo of mschipper
4.35/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Steady pour into pint glass. A: dark opaque brew with outstandingly tall, frothy, khaki head that sticks around through entirety of drink. S: immediate dark fruits, slight hops, and hints of bread. Raisin stands out strong. T: deliciously dark fruit, raisin, and date, alcohol is masked incredibly well. F: I happen to enjoy natural carbonation over forced, so not a favorite mouthfeel due to the moderate high forced carb, but still remarkably smooth. O: fantastic! 4.5 right behind my favorite Russian imperial stout, Saint Arnold Devine Reserve #13. Will definitely keep an eye out for more of these, as they are quite affordable for the high abv.

 650 characters

Photo of cyguyjg
4.92/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Appearance: unmistakably Imperial - dark as Midnight. Thick creamy lasting head. Aroma: I get a little cola and a little coffee. Taste: a bit of chocolate -- not too much. Feel: full but very palatable. Doesn't get any better than this.

 242 characters

Photo of benloho
4.63/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bottle had been in the cellar for 3 years. Time to partake!

Appearance: Gorgeous jet black pour into a tulip glass. Nice 2 finger tan head, super tight bubbles create a thick creamy look. Gorgeous figure to it after 3 years in the cellar.
Aroma: Boom! The nose on this one is an absolute gem! Rich, complex dark chocolate, cocoa, dark fruits, specifically figs, molasses, and a bit of roastiness. Each sniff brought out a deeper texture to the aroma, like it was building off of each previous smell.
Taste: Smooth and refined tastes that pleased my palate very much. All of the aforementioned aromas put to the tongue; a backbone of bitter bakers chocolate, and a bit of brown sugar. A licorice like middle of the mouth flavor gives way to roasty malt and slight coffee bitterness.
Mouthfeel: Rich, yet smooth. Complex body with a milkshake texture almost, yet very drinkable. Its wonderful when a high grav beer is drinkable yet best enjoyed when sipped as it warms. This beer cellars beautifully, I recommend it. Next one I do will be 5 years.

 1,046 characters

Photo of jopezu
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

opaque black, big head that sticks around. nose; bitter chocolate and hops. taste; bitter mix of toasted grains, hops, toffee, cola and baker's chocolate. a bit relaxed on the malts, so a thinner mouthfeel than expected. i don't get any of the fruit flavors that some claim. highly carbonated. the relaxed subtlety going on here is nice - a very nice hoppy, bitter stout that still has the roasted malt and chocolate flavors working for it quite strongly. shockingly easy to drink at 9% abv.

 495 characters

Photo of aleigator
3.62/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pitch black color, with a decent beige head, which collapses to a thick coating, especially at the edges of the glass.

Smells of toffee coated, coca-cola infused malts, accompanied by honey and skunky milk. Reveals a toasted malts counterpart, giving the sticky sweetness a certain balance.

Has a low carbonation with a soft mouthfeel and bubbly finish, offering a medium bodied beer, while ending with a warming honey peak.

Tastes of toffee, balanced by bread, whichs sweet character gets accentuated by caramel dipped grain toast. Reveals phenolic, biting coffee, while the beers sweetness gets expanded by more caramel, somewhat balanced by the coffee's bitterness. Finishes with earthy, crushed coffee, followed by a rock sugar ending, which still allowes the coffee to come through.

Drinks smooth, while its taste varies between being sticky sweet and a bitter blend, commuting from coffee to grassy hops.

 922 characters

Photo of johnnyd10vt
4.7/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Fantastic imperial stout. Smooth and creamy, complex palate, and well-balanced enough to keep the 8% ABV from being overwhelming. Arguably the best stout I've had this year.

 173 characters

Photo of ZakFaruki
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

L: Poured from a 12 oz. into a Nonic glass, pours an ink black with a dark tan head, about a finger's worth of foam that thins, beautiful amounts of lace around the glass.

S: Almost like a rich coffee with cream, the roasted malts and hops make this dark beer smell inviting.

T: Roasted malt and coffee on the nose, fades into a tartness and a bit of booze to boot, finishes semi-dry, disguises the 9% ABV rather well.

M: Creamy and smooth, the body is not as thick as it seems, you can also feel the hop oils stick to your teeth.

O: For the longest time, I have read and heard the hype about this beer, so I figured it was high-time I give it a try. Boy, for once, the hype and mounds of praise this beer gets is well-deserved, a solid example of the style, and a notch that all craft enthusiasts should have on their belt, will definitely put this into my rotation from now on.

 883 characters

Photo of Ksmoove27
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Drank cold from regular glass poured from bottle.

Look: Very dark . Three finger tan colored head (medium pouring) with lots of lacing. Head lasts a few minutes then dies down.

Smell: Malty,with roasted coffee notes.

Taste: Dark roasted coffee and bitter chocolate, molasses flavors. The 9% abv is pretty well masked, with the bitterness of coffee/chocolate..

Feel: Not a thick as I anticipated, it has a nice smooth mouth feel with slight carbonation.

Overall:Very good stout, a half step behind the Founders Breakfast Stout

 532 characters

Photo of DenisKolkin
4.46/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

355 ml bottle served fairly cold into a pint glass. Purchased while visiting Niagara Falls. Old Rasputin seems to be one of the flagbearers for the style based on comments from forums over the past couple of years. It may not be the absolute best Russian Imperial Stout, but it's top-notch, accessible and virtually everyone agrees it's a great beer. Really looking forward to this.

Appearance - Jet balck. Massive two and a half fingers of tan head, even with a gentle pour. Impressive head retention. Not a ton of lacing left behind but certainly some. Dark, ominous and brooding. I like where this is going....

Smell - Rich coffee aroma, but thrown in with a ton of leafy hops which add to the impact that the coffee brings to the nose. Some licorice, treacle and molasses combination settles in behind the coffee and the hops. Very impressive and not overdone. Cafe mocha as the beer warms a bit with coffee elements, dialed down with cream and a touch of vanilla. Phenomenal.

Taste - Starts fairly bitter with some coffee transitioning into a lighter and flavorful coffee and cream whipped drink. Then taste fades out before a slightly smokey flavor seeps in then finishes a sit began with an intense bitteness. Toffee and dark chocolate start coming through as the beer warms.

Mouthfeel - Smooth and relatively light on its feet, moderate carbonation and body given the 9% ABV, it drinks significantly lighter. A little oily and slick but it finishes moderate with a long -long-long lasting aftertaste.

Overall - Paid $3 USD per bottle, which given the exchange rate is like $4 CDN, but top shelf stuff, on par or maybe even better than St. Ambroise's RIS, just truly great stuff. Really highly regarded beer that lives up to the hype, that's uncommon.

 1,766 characters

Photo of dba103
5/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Drank cold from regular glass poured from bottle.

Look: Very dark brown/black with red tinges on the edge. Pretty large, tan colored head (medium pouring) with lots of lacing. Head lasts a few minutes then dies down.

Smell: Malty, slightly boozy smell with roasted coffee notes.

Taste: Dark roasted coffee and bitter chocolate, molasses flavors. The 9% abv is pretty well masked, with the bitterness of coffee/chocolate and warming sensation of alcohol on the back of the tongue and throat on the finish.

Feel: Decently thick, it has a nice smooth mouth feel with slight carbonation.

Overall: Excellent stout, one of the best ones I've had. Will definitely be buying again.

 680 characters

Photo of VT9091
5/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Hands-down THE BEST Russian Imperial Stout in existence. Black. Thick. Rich. Boozey. Oily. Not much of a head. Would love to drink two but can't do it.

 151 characters

Photo of dbl_delta
3.92/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler into pint glass. Jet black, opaque, low carbonation. Tan head. Caramel, chocolate, and coffee. Alcohol is well-hidden. This is a very, very good beer - but not my absolute favorite for the style. It's competent but not memorable.

 243 characters

Photo of OldManMetal
3.89/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This is a beautiful beer: a long-lived gigantic pebbly tan head that leaves extensive, complex lacing on a pitch-black body with sullen ruby highlights. The nose is subdued roasted malt- molasses and toffee- faintly sweet with alcohol undertones. The palate is alcohol and bitter roasted malt- mostly molasses and bitter, bitter chocolate- with the alcohol notes gaining traction towards the back of the palate. The finish is a flash of chocolate followed by a beer-defining roasted bitterness that lingers forever. Mouthfeel is a bit thinnish for the full body, but creamy and warming, and peppery from some very fizzy carbonation.

 632 characters

Photo of Reema
5/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Serving type: 12 oz bottle

It's really dark, black essentially. It looks good. Smells toasty, coffee-like, nutty even. Smells great. Amazing really. Tastes as it smells, toasty roasty coffee goodness, slightly sweet maltiness, with a small alcohol burn at the end. It tastes pretty great. Very thick feeling with moderate carbonation that gives the beer a pleasant creamy feel.

I love this stuff. Will definitely be buying more for years to come.

 449 characters

Photo of Cutlass
4.1/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Look - Inky black with a couple inches of copper head that eventually dissolved almost completely

Smell - heavily malty with notes of coffee and just a touch of whiskey (bourbon maybe?)

Taste - malty as expected though balanced by a bitter herbal hop aftertaste and some bite from the high alcohol content

Feel - smooth with relatively little carbonation

Overall - A tasty and interesting beer; this is my first russian imperial stout so I am unable to compare it to others within its style, but definitely worth a try

 523 characters

Photo of hopphead31415
4.61/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

I once tried this beer in a four-pack that was chilled down real good. It was my first time getting a brew that was in a four-pack, so it was a bit interesting. This brew boasts 9.0% ABV, but I have heard people say it drinks more like a 10-11% so watch out. It has 75 IBUs, but has plenty of sweetness so don’t worry.

Look-It pours a deep dark black. It leaves an initially thick head that has a copper tinge. It later disappears and leaves little to no lacing on the glass.

Smell-The aroma is roasted coffee, chocolate, toffee, and caramel with a slight acidity. It smells strongly of the rich creamy malts and a bite from the alcohol.

Taste-The coffee, chocolate, toffee, licorice, and spices are abundant smells that are cut with a vengeance by a sharp whiskey-like bite from the ample alcohol. The hops that linger afterwards are bitter but are also accompanied by a spicy aftertaste like nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger, black licorice, some cola, candied plums, and raisins.

Mouthfeel-It has a thick, chewy, rich, creamy, full-bodied, and smooth/silky mouthfeel. But it also has some noticeable fizz from the medium ambient carbonation. There is a lingering smoked wood coating on the tongue that has resins similar to cedar and red oak.

Overall-It is a very nice beer, but you better pour it or get it on tap. The aromas come out clean and complement the taste if your olfactory system is primed with the smell. The alcohol is quite powerful so watch out, but cuts the sweet full-bodied malt backbone that is freckled with a plethora of delicious spices and flavors as I describe above. This beer really deserves the Imperial Stout name and it is easily a world class beer. The bros give it a top score and I will as well. Cheers!

 1,740 characters

Photo of manfromanotherplace
4.04/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Very strong taste of licorice in this one, but still its a good stout, a little bitter but with a great mouthfeel to it and mellow aftertone that helps with the bitterness.

 172 characters

Photo of YodersBeerEmporium
4.21/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Very nice deep dark Russian Imperial Stout. Not readily available in the midwest so I was happy to get a chance to try this. Nice rich roasty stout.

 150 characters

Photo of snowmageddon
4.22/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: pours a thick deep brown with a dark tan, medium-full head that eventually fades away almost completely. Minimal lacing.
S: toffee, caramel, chocolate, licorice, light-roasted coffee, earthy/herbal hops, blueberry, whiskey
T: as you'd expect, chocolate, caramel, coffee are evident, but there are notes of biscuit, licorice, a whiskey-like alcohol bite at the end that accompanies a long, herbal hop finish.
M: full-bodied with a medium carbonation
O: a tasty RIS that has earned its reputation as a classic.

 511 characters

Photo of kscaldef
3.91/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Fills a Spielgau tulip with over an inch of dense khaki head over jet black body.

S: Classic roasted malts and coffee, slightly acrid with a hint of alcohol.

T: Coffee and roast, pumpernickel bread

M: Fairly light-bodied compared to the current imperial stout style, much more akin in mouthfeel to a standard stout. Develops a bit more richness as it comes up from refrigerator temperature.

O: Very classic RIS, although it comes across a little over-attenuated these days. Personally I prefer something which leans more in the chocolate direction than the dark-roast coffee direction.

 594 characters

Photo of Gtwreck45
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: dark, almost opaque black pour. Decent sized off white frothy head that leaves lacing on the glass
S: lots of coffee smell along with the roasty barley type smell you'd expect from an imperial stout
T: very roasted taste with more coffee and cocoa flavors. Touch of pleasant hop bitterness as well. F: lingering flavor really carries out the roasted flavors. good full mouthfeel
O: a standout imperial stout. This one seems to fly under the radar, but I this holds its own in a tasting against any other non-BA imperial stout.

 534 characters

Photo of renegadeburger
4.71/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

actually had this beer many times but had it again and sure enough it is still that same great beer it always was

don't remember it pouring so thick like this it almost looked like motor oil when it came out like a viscous maple syrup or something

bit wow I can't believe that flavor it isso well balanced and all there for such a big beer this has to be considered one of the best Russian imperial stouts

 407 characters

Photo of josanguapo
4.85/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

From XXXII. In Duvel glass. After dinner. I dont like stouts. I cant finish a guinness. But this one is very different. I enjoy it a lot. Great taste, aroma and aspect

 167 characters

Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 3,540 ratings.