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: 11,156
rAvg: 4.28
pDev: 4.91%
Wants: 466
Gots: 2,208 | 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.
View: Beers (25) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 3,495 | Hads: 11,156
Photo of Mooslerfitness
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice dark pour huge head 3 fingers s:
deep cocoa and coffee t: just as it smells with a slight alcohol finish f: creamy and rich O: great stout great price (156 characters)

Photo of Jwburns75
3.63/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I much prefer a sweeter imperial stout (say, Founders Imperial) to a more coffee forward one (like, say, FBS). Old Rasputin falls toward the FBS side. Strong coffee/roast notes, much lacing, became more enjoyable as it warmed. A bit of a hop presence if I'm not mistaken. A solid beer, but there are more enjoyable options out there IMHO. (341 characters)

Photo of Thepumpkinpiper
4.52/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

An incredible beer, yet one I think only dark-beer fanatics will enjoy.

Look: Pitch-black, beyond darkness. Generous dark tan head. Held up directly to the sunlight, not even one ray shines through this one. Intimidating.

Smell: Icy, smoky, with a huge dose of bitter roasted malt and some hops.

Taste: HUGE. A massive dose of jet-black roasted malt, spicy hops, coffee, some liquorice, bits of smoke.

Feel: Surprisingly not too oily but rather refreshing on the palate. Carbonation is inoffensive.

Overall, if you like dark beers, this is a significant one to at least try, even if it is too dark for one's taste in the end. For myself, it has rapidly become a favourite. An incredible, luxurious beer. (710 characters)

Photo of IPAlmighty
4.62/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Man, this is good. That crazy bastard that inspired the name should be proud. The booze is masterfully masked, it's hard to find fault in this brew. When I have customers looking for an Imperial Stout, I direct them to this with no reservations. (245 characters)

Photo of mchegash
4.19/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance - 4.75/5
A massive amount of very dark tan froathy head. Color is basically pure black. Looks delicious and inviting.

Smell - 3.75/5
A huge smell with deep rich malts, some chocolate, along with some hop bitterness and slight alcohol aromas. Earthy. Slightly sweet.

Taste - 4.25/5
Massive taste, deep, dark roasty chocolate flavors. Very smoky. A slight sweetness, along with a slight metallic tinge, making the taste a little earthy. Slight to moderate hoppiness.

Mouthfeel - 4.5/5
Fairly full bodied, goes down very smooth, very creamy. Carbonation is on the lighter side of things, but still very pleasant. I feel that a higher level or carbonation would detract from the ability to taste this delicious beer.

Overall - 4.25/5
Overall this was a very good beer. Probably not my favorite Russian Imperial Stout, I think there are some better ones out there. In particular, this one was a little too hoppy for me. I want straight massive malty flavor, and for me, any hoppiness in a stout takes away from that. Anyway, definitely worth a try for all stout/imperial stout lovers. (1,094 characters)

Photo of JPowell712
4.15/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A very nice Russian Imperial Stout. The smell is nice a bold. You get a smoky coffee odor and hints of chocolate. The big taste has so much going on! The smoky roasted coffee with chocolate malts and a nice dry mixture of hops. This is a winner! (250 characters)

Photo of Oldejoe
4.33/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look. Dark mahogany, robust medium brown head.
Smell. Spicey (allspice, more than cinnamon), fresh yeasty, earthy.
Taste. Slightly sweet, rich forerunning foundation, followed by pretty robust, dry, puckery finish. Strong on the hops though they must not be real bitter hops.
Overall Another in the robust, leaning to the hoppy side imperial stout. Good job achieving its stylistic aim. (389 characters)

Photo of np_wizard
4.26/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I got a pint of this on tap in San Francisco. The aroma was very satisfying, and paired strongly with the soft foam head that sweetened my first sip. It wasn't too bitter, or overly heavy for a stout, and the dark brown/almost black color was complimented by the continual foaming of the head even after I had finished the first third of the beer. I was very satisfied, and would definitely recommend this beer. (411 characters)

Photo of BuccoFan
3.84/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Perfect head and lacing. Medium bodied with medium flavor. Slight hint of carbonation. Very enjoyable. Frustrating that it is relatively unusual that a solid RIS is available year-round. Might not grab this when certain other ones are in season, but a good one this is. (269 characters)

Photo of rscp
4.75/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

My favorite stout that I've found, and its available year-round!

IMO a perfect blend of coffee, chocolate, and an oatmealish sort of midrange that makes this beer incredibly balanced and drinkable. Warm, boozy feel only adds to how awesome this beer is. I could probably drink a keg in a sitting if only my stomach would allow it. (331 characters)

Photo of Nathaniel4321
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

One of the best beers on the planet. I recently had the bourbon barrel aged versions, so good. I sipped and savored. Thick and viscous, great mouth feel, good malt hop balance, chocolate notes, and coffee hints. So good. (220 characters)

Photo of marieli
3.41/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Bottle. Started at 56d. Looked good, but smell and taste were strong alcohol. Not distinguishing chocolate or coffee to me. Alcohol tended to dominate. Mouthfeel is on thinner side, maybe medium. Creaminess and more thickness would have helped perhaps. My friend loves this beer and picks up chocolate from it. I did not and was disappointed based on ratings it has received. I would much prefer the flavorful and much more balanced Courage or Samuel Smith Imperial Stouts. (481 characters)

Photo of D_McClain
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours very black - black enough to stop the winter sun - with a creamy, two-finger tan colored head. Strong dark-roasted coffee aroma and taste, finishing with notes of bitter cocoa and rye. No doubt their malt is kilned. Alcohol is well hidden by a caramelized, peppery, herbal bouquet. Subtle hints of sour fruit are in there somewhere. A very nuanced stout. Feels just like it looks: full-bodied and viscous with a mere touch of astringency. I can't find anything wrong with this beer. It has a legitimate claim to best in class. (532 characters)

Photo of PGD120
4.28/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

poured on draft into pint glass

appearance: dark brown, almost black with a nice 1 finger tan head. lots of lacing

aroma: roasty malts lots of chocolate, some coffee. just very roasty

taste: roasted malt right away with lots of chocolate and some french toast type flavors minus the cinnamon and syrup. little bit of alcohol but not too much. a little bit of hop bitterness too, but really just to balance the malt

mouth feel : thick and creamy

overall: just a very delicious stout (486 characters)

Photo of flyingpig
4.04/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

355ml bottle from Good Spirits Co, Glasgow:
This one was definitely a very nice imperial stout from North Coast but at the same time it wasn't one that managed to blow me away or indeed to live up to the heights of some of the other American brewed imperial stouts that I've tried over the last few months. The beer was highly drinkable despite the strength, although some alcohol was noticeable throughout; an enjoyable beer but just not my favourite of the style. (465 characters)

Photo of IvanNewMexico
4.78/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is my favorite beer. It is strong in both taste and power, but it is an acquired taste. Once you acquire the taste, there is no going back.

Think of Guinness Stout, but stronger and more flavorful. (204 characters)

Photo of Aaron_Eicher
3.51/5  rDev -18%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

In Rasputin's earlier years, he was known for his "healing through prayer" and stuff. In reality, he used a version of Aspirin that was available at the time.

Is this relevant? Absolutely. Truth is, Old Rasputin was misleading.

I poured the black beverage into my glass and took a whiff. It was a definitely a stout. Smelled like roasted barley with a hint of coffee. It was a taste I was looking forward to.

I wasn't prepared for the taste though. This is one bitter stout. No joke. As soon as I took a sip, my taste buds were greeted with a roasted/alcoholic flavor, but was quickly and severely washed away by bitterness in the back of my tongue. The beer finished with the bitterness of hops and 95% cacao dark chocolate.

All in all, I would recommend this to anyone who is in for a surprise...and wants to get a buzz. (837 characters)

Photo of Jonoesh5
3.43/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Wow, alcohol is front and center. Surprised by how prominent this flavor is over oats, dark chocolate, and other notes. A very bitter stout with soapy/carbonated mouthfeel and strong, strong alcohol warmth. Unfortunately, not a stout I would recommend or have again anytime soon :/ (281 characters)

Photo of kissmybunniebutt
4.49/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Looked almost like squid ink in the bottle - very impressive indeed. It had a nice bitter coffee, burnt sugary quality in it's aroma. And the smell was very indicative of the taste. Nice, bitter, deep, and full. The mouthfeel was surprisingly bright, considering it's richness. Very well done. (293 characters)

Photo of buckslayer50
4.74/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

LOVE this beer, the look was black as coal with an awesome tan foam head, taste was incredible, and it went down so easy. Love everything about it and will buy it many more times in the future. (194 characters)

Photo of mtvolkens
4.43/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours jet black with huge billowing brown head that held well. Smells of dates, raisin bread, and chocolate. Up front it tastes of sweet chocolate and bread pudding. Has an obvious alcohol taste following with a touch of carbonation and a zing from the alcohol. Has a bitter aftertaste that leaves the palette begging for another drink. (340 characters)

Photo of Zenvortex
4.17/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours like old motor oil with foamy head that dissipates quickly - splotchy lacing Lite molasses nose, Strong coffee taste with moderate bitterness - big flavors all working well, Great non-slimy mouth feel - ok carbonation, Overall a good example of this often overlooked style - not for everyone but I'll take another one (325 characters)

Photo of dmgeng
4.46/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Always on the shelf and is a solid get but there are better available.

A - Pours a reasonably thick black and exploded with a ton of light brown colored head with good lacing.

S - Rich roasty aroma with chocolate and coffee aromas secondary. Good blend of acrid roastiness and rich malt and chocolate malt.

T - Very similar to the smell; has the roastiness from the smell first but closely accompanied by the rich chocolate, malt, and coffee tones. It is full flavored with a stronger bitterness that helps balance the sweetness. Not as big as some but plenty of flavor. More on the bitter char side but still enough malt to make this a tasty beer.

M - High mouth-feel. High carbonation. This one just erupted with carbonation as I poured not expecting such vigor from the solution. I like the carbonation because even though it is a viscous beer the carbonation and bitterness do a good job of tricking your mind into thinking that it is lighter. This beer finishes well for being over carbed and less sweet.

Overall, this is a very good imperial stout. This is an above average RIS just because I like the roast forward nature of it but I still prefer Ten Fidy with its sheer power. I would definitely recommend this beer but only after you've tried Ten-Fidy.

Glass- Snifter (1,283 characters)

Photo of CIBoy10
4.77/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Look - oily jet black with nice off-white head that leads to great lacing.
Smell - currants, raisins, cocoa. pretty impressive.
Taste - raisins, coffee, tobacco, a little hoppy, cocoa. nice hoppy bitterness that lasts through the finish.
Feel - very smooth, appropriately carbonated.
Overall - very impressed with this one. i found it nicely complex. (350 characters)

Photo of Snaefridur
3.56/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Jet black, with a 2 finger light brown head, which dissipated quickly.

Smell - nothing stands out, just a bit of alcohol, though not as overwhelming as I'd expected

Taste - starts off with a bitter bite, in the way of a strong coffee, with noticeable (but not overwhelming) alcohol present. This fades into a roasted flavor, and leaves a bitterness on the back of the tongue for a bit.

Feel - It is smooth,not very carbinated, texture is more water than cream, but not very watery.

Overall: This is an OK stout. I don't know how it compares to other RIS's, since this is only the second one that I've tasted. I drink alot of regular stouts, however, and love em. I bought Old Rasputin because of the hype; I thought this was going to be either an "I really LOVE it" or "Omg, I HATE it!" beer, based on the reviews. However, I just feel in the middle. It's not bad, I'll enjoy drinking the bottles I have, and I might buy it again, but I won't be in a rush to do so. It's simply OK.

I was expecting a lot more complexity, but really, I think it's kind of bland. I've tasted stouts with a lot more flavor than this, and I've also had stouts that have a much harder alcohol bit than this. To the reviewers going on about the "kick in the mouth" alcohol experience....I really don't experience that, personally. This is a typical stout. Maybe some people are just used to drinking light beers? (1,419 characters)

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