1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Samuel Smith's Imperial Stout - Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)

Not Rated.
Samuel Smith's Imperial StoutSamuel Smith's Imperial Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

3,256 Ratings
THE BROS
99
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,256
Reviews: 1,665
rAvg: 4.17
pDev: 11.51%
Wants: 153
Gots: 241 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster) visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Todd on 02-27-2001)
View: Beers (27) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Samuel Smith's Imperial Stout Alström Bros
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 3,256 | Reviews: 1,665 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Can_has_beer
3.2/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had this one a few times now and I just can't behind those flavors. I think its the yeast, which comes off as a bit Belgian to me. I think it needs less yeast and more roast.

Photo of Jeffsta1
4.21/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A fine stout, a benchmark for me.
Pours dark, light head.
Moderate mouthfeel for an imperial stout.
Very nice flavor. Coffee, cocoa, mildly bitter, not overly sweet.
Finish is subtle but long; classic stout flavors

Photo of ClavisAurea
3.73/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

500ml bottle served in a snifter at fridge temps. No freshness date but was purchased in 12/2014.

Appearance: very dark brown with a nice and thick tan head. Fairly effervescent considering this is a low carbonation style. It was not as thick as some other examples of an imperial stout but was decent.

Smell: raisins, prunes, and other dark fruits, notably fruity (Ringwood yeast maybe), sugar plums. No alcohol, coffee, chocolate, dark malty character at all. Weird from an imperial stout with this pedigree.

Taste and Feel: pretty thin but very tasty, no alcohol at all, roasted character in the middle where I'd expect some classic stout chocolate or coffee notes would be, there is a roasted malt finish and the mouthfeel is rather dry for the style.

I have to say, this was not at all what I was expecting from a very classic imperial stout. Maybe it's because I'm used to the amped up American versions here in the states. I'm going to have to try to get a hold of some more classic English examples of this style to see if this is what it's supposed to be. I have another bottle that I'm going to try in a few months. Lets see if I can find a Courage RIS to try.

Photo of VashonGuy
3.75/5  rDev -10.1%

Photo of NeubTube
4.16/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of TylerSeitz52
4.4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of wrightst
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

Photo of majorbase2
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very very dark (possibly black) color with a very large, thick, brown head. Not the best retention. Recedes leaving a small amount of lacing around the edges.

Aroma leads with milky chocolate. Very very sweet. A bit of dark fruit, most noticeably raisin. Chocolate really dominates here.

Taste is more of the same, although not necessarily in a bad way. Some notes of biscuity malts, a bit more of the dark fruits, with a hint of black licorice. Sweetness dominates. Once again, raisin is the most noticeable dark fruit. Honestly not as much going on in the taste as I had hoped.

Although I have been disappointed to this point, mouthfeel knocks it out of the park. Medium bodied, perfectly carbonated. Nice and creamy, goes down very smooth. The most easily downable Stout I've ever had.

Overall, I'm honestly a little disappointed in my first entry from Samuel Smith. Although they completely nail the sweet, milky chocolate in the taste, I wasn't moved by any other aspects of the taste. Still a good Stout, but not what I had hoped.

Photo of JackieKu
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of Gator85
4.75/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of Arminius757
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

Outstanding.
Dark black coloring with mocha head.
Sweet smelling, with hint of chocolate and dark maltyness.
Sweet taste, super smooth, very dark taste. Dark fruity undertones. Some hint of coca and barley as well. Complex without being overpowering or underwhelming. Easily one of my new favorites.
Overall a truly excellent beer.

Photo of dan3099
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of Drift
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of olradetbalder
3.75/5  rDev -10.1%

Photo of victory4me
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of Alfredolagarda
5/5  rDev +19.9%

Photo of HopintheSouth
4.75/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of SeanMurray
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Another great beer by samuel smith. Alot of raisin and grape. pretty good.

Photo of Gajo74
4.66/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a fine looking opaque black and viscous looking liquid. The head's color is even more intriguing; a frothy and bubbly tan head retains well as a sticky lace that reminds me of cappuccino foam. The aroma is unbelievable! Espresso, chocolate, banana or raisin bread and roasted malty sweetness. Taste has elements of sweet roasted malts, creamy coffee, and balanced by a slightly dry and very subtle bitter finish. Carbonation is lively on the tongue and settles as drink,gets warm. A full bodied drink; excellent to warm up to in cold weather and to eat with chocolates. I have been equally impressed with all of Samuel Smith's products, and this one might be my favorite thus far.

Photo of Thirstygoat
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of anteater
3.8/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of hockeyfighter19
4.68/5  rDev +12.2%

Photo of h4ger
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of doktorhops
4.3/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Well, well, well Mr. Samuel Smith has an Imperial Stout, and judging by their other fine Ales this will no doubt turn out to be a world class example of said style... I’m going to enjoy this more than Fred Quimby’s nephew enjoying a clumsy Clouseau-esque French waiters pronunciation of the word “chowder” (its International Simpsons Reference Day by the way - D’oh!*).

Poured from a 355ml bottle into a Duvel tulip.

A: A deep foreboding black body greets me with a nice boisterous khaki 1cm head on top. It’s a damn fine looking Imperial Stout, or RIS† for short. 9/10.

S: More on the dark chocolate than coffee side with a large roasted malt body, brown sugar, woody notes, with a hint of earthy hops in the finish. As a traditional British RIS you know that this will be sweeter and less bitter than its American cousins - it’s not always about hops Doc! 8/10.

T: Wow! A tour de force of a classic RIS here! Upfront it is quite sweet (we expected that) with dark cacao, roasted barley, brown sugar and woody notes. It follows through to an earthy/herbal light bitter finish. What amazes with this excellent Stout is how the sugar content hits the goldilocks zone in your tongue, it is indeed “just right”. 9/10.

M: Mouthfeel adds to the rich tapestry of this RIS with a mid to heavy body, some nice and sticky viscosity and a light English pub carbonation. 7/10.

D: I could quite happily finish a night on a few of these bad boys... obviously not a good idea to begin a night out with any RIS - they can generally be anywhere upwards of 7% ABV (this one is 7%), however the ease with which this one goes down does beguile one into thinking that it’s not such heavyweight. Needless to say this one is going on my regular beer shopping list (at least until Plonk gets more FBS back in). 9/10.

Food match: Fits right into that 20th century slot after dessert but before brandy and cigars... I would pair it with a bold English cheese platter, then move on to gout.

*Fool! - there is no International Simpsons Reference Day, ha ha!

†The “R” is short for “Russian” comrade.

« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Samuel Smith's Imperial Stout from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
93 out of 100 based on 3,256 ratings.