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

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

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3,254 Ratings

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Ratings: 3,254
Reviews: 1,663
rAvg: 4.17
pDev: 11.51%
Wants: 153
Gots: 238 | 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)
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Ratings: 3,254 | Reviews: 1,663 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ColForbin
4.38/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Samuel Smith's Imperial Stout pours a nearly opaque black with a dark brown head. Aroma is an awesome blend of coffee and dark chocolate, after a couple swirls of the glass to remove a slight skunkiness (damn clear bottles). Taste is dark roast coffee, with some very dark chocolate and some sour fruit as well. Just a great blending of flavors. Off-dry finish with hoppy bitterness evident, but nowhere near the hop level of some new-school versions. Mouthfeel is heavy and slick but carbonation is still evident. Very drinkable, and the fact that this beer is only 7% makes it reasonable to have a couple. Just a great, classic beer.

Photo of maek228
4.03/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Got an 18 oz. bottle at a nice restaurant. Ate an 8 oz. Angus Burger with it. Not the best pairing ever, but it definitly got the job done.

Appearance: Black and decanted with a 2 finger frothy head. Head had a orange/red hue to it.

Smell: Columbian coffee, unsweetened chocolate, heavy malts, and hops.

Taste: Bitter strong coffee...not quite an expresso taste, more like a Columbian or Arabian coffee from Starbucks. This is an upfront flavor, other flavors are dark chocolate, roasted malts, and some bitter hops that linger. Also, with this one there was a heavy alcohol taste. I've had this beer about 5 other times before this, and usually I don't get the alcohol flavor...but this time it was quite noticable.

Mouthfeel: Ma-ma-ma-ma-malt. Clings to your mouth. Nice.

Drinkability. Drank two 18 oz.ers tonight. DAMN.

Photo of maddamish
4.83/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

An excellent stout!

Ap:Dark black in color. Medium head that retains well.

Smell: Butterscotch and coffee notes in the nose.

Taste: Carmel, Butterscotch, coffee and malt notes. These flavors interact and mix well. This is a very complex and satisfying stout that you will contemplate for awhile. A touch of toast Very nice. Very impressed.

Mouthfeel: This is the only weak part of the beer. It is too watery for me and I was a tad disappointed it wasn't thicker.

Notes: An excellent stout

Photo of tedpeer
4.22/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce pour into a pint.

A - Huge head that settles to about 3/4 to an inch of tan foam. Pours black. Some lacing.

S - Roasted malts, coffee and chocolate.

T - Chocolate and coffee. A little sweet. A little bitter at the finish.

M - thin, but carbonation is perfect.

D - Very good.

Photo of Stouttyme
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of Weas
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

Photo of drunkboxer1
4.47/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours solid black with a leathery brown head. Smells strongly of dark roasted malt, chocolate, and maybe a little alcohol. Tastes incredibly strongly of those roasted flavors, but with enough hop characteristics to stand out a bit. Earthy hops, and a moderate bitterness. I guess if I had to choose between this and Old Rasputin or something like that I'd take the American version, but it's a close second.

Photo of dismal
4.35/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I love stouts, and imperial stouts are one of my favorite types of stouts. I've been meaning to pick this beer up for quite some time now and was excited to try it. Poured into a pint glass it pours a black opaque color with a tanish colored head, looks great! The aroma is roasted malts, chocolate, a little bit of coffee? Either way the smell is wonderful, though the taste is quite better. With a somewhat thick and creamy mouthfeel with a taste of coffee and chocolate that is pretty sweet it's a great tasting beer. Easily drinkable. There are some imperial stouts I could only drink a few of in one night but this one I could easily do more of no problem. Not a high alcohol content and a great taste this is one I will be picking up again for sure.

Photo of Jman_01
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of Skagnetti
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of RusImpStoLuv
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

Photo of hoppecatania
5/5  rDev +19.9%

Photo of VAcrossr
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

Photo of benbou17
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

Photo of Bamarooster
4.75/5  rDev +13.9%

Photo of Dantes
4.83/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Package: Appropriately regal, extra-tall 12oz. foil-topped, crowned, clear bottle. Label notches, but no date key or ABV. Old-fashioned white label with gold and black lettering.

Cost: $6.99 per 4-pack

Presentation: Imperial pint at ~50º

Appearance: Very dark brown with some ruby glow. Generated a moderate 1 to 2 finger head, that quickly resolved to a thick foam collar that gradually receded. Not the darkest stout, but plenty dark enough.

Smell: Very toasty, with some fortified-wine notes, coffee, chocolate, and dark blackberry and currant fruitiness on the nose. A generous, round, full aroma.

Taste: The flavors follow through on what the aroma promised, adding just the right amount of burnt-sugar sweetness, nuttiness, bitterness, and alcohol volatility to keep things from being bland or cloying. An homage to good water, skilled brewing, and the art of toasting malt. Very multi-dimensional, with the finish of Methuselah.

Mouthfeel: Excels. This powerful, flavorful beer defines finesse. Creamy, perfectly carbonated, with a full, rounded body. Coats the tongue, but remains dry enough to remind you you’re drinking beer!

Drinkability: Stouts don’t get more drinkable than this! Rich, satisfying, but not overwhelming. Delivers a surfeit of flavor without being hugely filling and lets one have two or three without repercussions. I should deduct 0.5 because I want a 20oz. serving!

Backwash: I haven’t had this in some time, and more’s the shame! A recent article in the Times led me to buy some and try it again. Boy, was I impressed. Not the darkest, not the hoppiest, not the highest ABV; but still the archetype of Imperial Stout. You can have all the Storm King you want, I’ll be happy with this! They haven’t forgotten that malt is at least as important as hops when it comes to stouts. And, what are you guys who mention the price talking about? It’s beautifully made and shipped over here, for less than what a lot of US microcraft brewers charge for inferior beers, and worth every cent! This beer clearly proves what Mies van de Rohe said, “Less is more.”

Photo of zjungleist
4.35/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance is more or less totally black, with rather dark head like coffee with just a little cream. Initially I got a lot of chocolate out of the nose, but it expanded into dark fruits and slight alcohol scents. The taste definitely has some fruit in it, with raisins mostly, and also complex and bitter roasted malts. It has a rich and velvety feel, with just enough carbonation to keep it from being oily. This has a high drinkablity, with only 7%, but is certainly flavorful enough to be satisfying.

Photo of srrn
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow, this is a truly great beer. Pours a thick dark oil brown with a tan two finger head. A fair amount of lacing on the glass. Smells of chocolate first then coffee and burnt toast later. Taste is very similar with a dark chocolate bitterness to the long finish. Wonderfully oily mouthfeel. Carbonation is perfect. A winner.

Photo of semibaked
2.98/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a pint glass.

A - Pours super black with about 2 inches of brown head.

S - First thing I smell is red wine (kinda weird) but also has roasty malts and some syrupy sweetness too.

T - Wow a lot acidic and sharper than I thought it would be, really boozy up front, some hops with some malts and raisin sweetness. Really disappointed in the taste I was expecting a traditional Imperial Stout and I didn't get it.

M - Really smooth and creamy, very nice, too bad the beer doesn't taste better.

D - I am pretty bummed by this, I usually really like Samuel Smith's beer but this is bad stuff. Definitely will not be drinking or buying this again.

Photo of Shakerman
5/5  rDev +19.9%

Photo of hogansct
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of frankiepop
4.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Helluva stout here. Samuel Smith's puts the imperial in Imperial Stout. Thick black beer with of toffee colored head. My beer was very cold and served in a very good Duvel artsy glass. Now this beer is coal black. No light, no redness, and no brown. Just black.

Smell is black licorice. Smokey. Tobacco. Dark roasted malts. Dark fruit raisins prunes. Extreme. Molasses.

Taste is outrageous old bitter sweet candies that are well-balanced. But I like the black licorice prunish flavor bursting through. I ran a head to head comparison with Old Rasputin RIS. I have to admit I was cheering for Ol Ras, but no Samuel Smith trumped the Michigan brewer. That deep down smokey black licorice dark heavy fruit flavors really knock me out.

Damn good beer and should be drank with one of Coltranes incredible versions of the modal composition - Impressions or maybe LL Cool J Momma Said Knock You Out! if thats more of your flavor flav.

Photo of lancecenter
3.5/5  rDev -16.1%

Photo of leantom
4.69/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm very happy that I bought this. Here goes:

A: A dark black that lets no light through - completely opaque. The beers pours a small brown head that leaves plenty of lacing upon consumption (good protein content). Lovely, but not that impressive for the realm of imperial stouts.

S: Exquisite. Lots of brown sugar, caramel, toffee and milk chocolate at the forefront, but can also detect many dark fruits like plums and raisins. Emphasis on the milk chocolate bit. Can't detect any hops and the English brewer's yeast is also imperceptible (which is to be expected; it's not a Belgian ale).

T: Taste follows the nose. Lots of dark malt leading to an obvious chocolatey flavor profile, but there's also a lot of raisins and plums that linger in the aftertaste. Rather, the initial taste is one of robust chocolate but this gives way to darker, sweeter fruit. Very nice and well balanced interplay of dark fruit and chocolate.

M: Nice. Decently carbonated and well-rounded thickness/creaminess.

O: A very nice, well-balanced stout bursting with chocolate and dark fruit.

Photo of bpowers315
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Samuel Smith's Imperial Stout from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
93 out of 100 based on 3,254 ratings.