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Otter Creek Russian Imperial Stout - Otter Creek Brewing / Wolaver's

Not Rated.
Otter Creek Russian Imperial StoutOtter Creek Russian Imperial Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

282 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 282
Hads: 554
Avg: 4
pDev: 10.25%
Wants: 40
Gots: 36 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Otter Creek Brewing / Wolaver's
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Brad007 on 01-09-2009

Every so often we brew this tasty treat that clocks in at 10% ABV. A silky smooth, motor-oil black pour reveals rich, roasty notes of caramel, chocolate and coffee. Like the first stouts brewed for Russian Czars, this offering is big, bold and built to last. Grab a few for the cellar, a couple for your comrades and enjoy because—like those Czars of yesteryear—this beer may be gone soon.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 282 | Hads: 554
Photo of Sammy
4.13/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks Jon for sharing. Pours thick black with great brownish head. Good aroma of expresso and chocolate and the taste delivers, with coffee, expresso, lots of chocolate. A bit sweet biased, but good bitterness there.Above average mouthfeel. Dangerously drinkable. Could be the best they have ever done.

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Photo of metter98
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a half finger high tan head that consistently left a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface.
S: There are aromas of chocolate and roasted malts in the nose along with some hints of licorice.
T: The taste is similar to the smell except that the licorice flavors are very subdued. A light amount of bitterness is present.
M: It feels full-bodied and a bit smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. There is a bit of dryness in the finish.
O: This beer is a very good representation of the style and hides its alcohol well.

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Photo of brentk56
3.95/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: This one pours with a rocky mocha head that sits atop the pitch black liquid; the head quickly descends to a film and leaves only a few splotches behind

Smell: Dark chocolate and burnt brown sugar, with hints of licorice and dark fruit

Taste: Dark chocolate, burnt brown sugar and some fruitiness, up front, with the hops adding a bit of citrus by mid-palate, when a boozy tingle brings another aspect; after the swallow, the chocolate is the dominant flavor, although the citrus lingers in the aftertaste

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation; not as full bodied as expected for the ABV

Overall: A very nice stab at the style for a brewery not known for brewing such bid beers; not the best RIS out there as it lacks some complexity in the malt bill but it is a very good value

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.67/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

Pours near black with a slight mocha head. A bit of retention and a small amount of lacing. The nose brings some coffee, chocolate, and roasted malt as well as a tiny amount of booze. The taste is more chocolate with a bit of roast. Feel is a bit boozy but very nice. Drinks alright, but isn't one of the top examples of the style. Have a bottle to age, and we'll see how that does.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.25/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Motor oil black with no appreciable accents, no matter how bright the backlighting. Atop the beer sits a coffee milkshake colored crown that looks as thick and as creamy as... well... a coffee milkshake. The foam hangs around forever and does the glass proud when it finally fades.

It smells like OCRIS is chock full of roasted and chocolate malt. This is one powerful stout and the starting chill hasn't even has a chance to melt away. There's nothing fancy here, just big burly barley of the darkest kind. My expectations just shot through the roof.

Russian Imperial Stout *almost* tastes as good as it smells. It isn't quite the malt monster that it needs to be to compete with the style's best, but it's a damn good first effort at high-gravity beer for a brewery that has only recently ventured into those waters.

Specific flavors include bittersweet chocolate, charred coffee beans, brown sugar (which was added), hints of black licorice, and a bitter tea leafiness that must be due to Magnum and Willamette hops. This is clearly a fresh bottle because the lupulins are still on the aggressive side. The finish is amazingly tight given all those malt sugars.

Alcohol is buried beautifully, something that is hardly a given when the ABV tops double digits. The mouthfeel doesn't miss the next highest score by much. It falls just short of medium for the style, although that matches the surprisingly balanced (read: hoppy) flavor profile very well.

It looks like the brewers at Otter Creek did their homework after deciding to release an RIS. This offering is undoubtedly more hoppy than the originals, but this hophead isn't about to complain. $6.99 was a more than reasonable price and I wouldn't hesitate to spend it again.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.43/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Finally was able to track this one down thanks to the NO BS BIF. I have been wanting to try this new big one from otter creek for a while now. Served at cellar temp and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 04/14/2009.

The pour was very nice. Black as night and simply huge here with an enormous tan head of foam that just came up over the top and sat there for a few moments before releasing its grip and settling down into a normal inch high pillow that was simply a wonder to behold. The aroma was rich roasted malts, lots of chocolate and coffee notes here, hints of licorice and a nice molasses bit as it warms up. Almost vanilla touches, but not really. Big upfront hint of dark coffee for me, this mellowed somewhat after a few moments but still kept a tight leash on the flavor throughout. Rich notes of cocoa and light alcohol rising up mid palate as it really warmed up leaving a nice and lightly hopped finish to mingle with the rich ad sweet notes that had started it all. Big smooth body on here, really very full with great carbonation and a nice, easy sipping feel to it. A wee bit strong, but no matter this one was a nice change to sit and watch TV with.

Overall a very, very solid RIS, not the best I have had but no complaints here at all, easily the best beer to come out of the brewery that I have ever had. Solid from top to bottom, and certainly a must try.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.15/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a dark brown, near black body with a frothy, bubbly, dark tan head.

Smell: Dark roasted maltiness command the earthy, heady aroma with full notes of coffee, chocolate, and charred grains.

Taste: Sweet, malty opening of roasted barley, bittersweet chocolate, cigar ash, and Italian roast coffee. Slight fruitiness buried underneath all the weighty malt flavors. Growing roasty, earthy bitterness and slight hint of warming alcohol begin to take hold, though a taste of gooey molasses tempers them somewhat. Finishes dry and rather roasty.

Mouthfeel: Medium-full body. Medium carbonation. Fairly smooth mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Recommended. Whaddya know, that's pretty darned good. A well-made, respectable RIS from Otter Creek.

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Photo of jlindros
4.03/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Kinda felt like a Finnish Sahti or something similar during this storm, but guess I don't have any available for review interestingly. So next best step is a RIS.

Pours a very dark inky looking pitch black thick beer, a small dark molasses brown colored fizzy head covering that fades pretty quickly although typical for a 10% RIS. This puppy sucks the light in like a nice black hole, none escaping, and gives the glass a nice show with legs from here to Boise.

NOse starts with plenty of dark malts, black malt right off, then some roasted barley, hint of dark chocolate that seems like 95% cacao dark, with a light burnt bitter acrid that is getting into the soy sauce category but not there yet. A faint vanilla as well as hints of earthy hops. A bit of cacao nibs I think too.

Taste starts with big dark malts again, roasted barley again but not coffee, and plenty of black malt. The super dark black malts bring char as expected, as well as a bit of acrid burnt roast and again starts to get soy sauce like again. Crazy dark chocolate in there a bit again, maybe even cacao nibs, but mostly a dark bitter almost acrid chocolate. THe super dark malts also bring some tannins and bitterness to go with it, as well as hints of earthy hops in the middle somewhere. The booze is in there a bit, warming mostly, but is blended into the big dark malts fairly well. The thick malts get a bit syrupy but not overly syrupy, with thick chewy malts, maybe even hints of creamy oats. Finish is semi sticky and sweet, long lingering dark malts, roasted malt, black malt, a bit of chocolate plenty of earthy hop bitterness and some tannins from the roasted malts, and just a touch of burnt acrid flavor lingering for a while, as it somewhat coats the mouth.

Mouth is fuller bodied, fluffy carbonation and thick slightly creamy and rich, just a touch of warming booze.

Overall pretty good, I think this will improve with age pretty well as it has all the right components, super dark malts that get slightly syrupy and borderline soy sauce, just light warming booze, some dark malt tannins, just the right about of earthy hops, which I think will age quite well. As for now being fairly fresh, it's a pretty decent beer but not great yet.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.35/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz foil topped bomber into a tulip glass.

Pours a dense motor oil black with several fingers of extremely rigid looking burnt mocha (almost like chocolate milk) head. This settles down into a 1/2 finger of solid retention, which throws up a big and creamy cascade that just DRENCHES the sides of the glass with foam and brown oily goo. The aroma is huge with roasted grains and zippy notes of espresso beans, along with underlying backer's chocolate that adds some sweetness to the mix. A stiff whiff of licorice and heat pull up the back of this bouquet. Just a really nice and assertive Imperial Stout nose here.

The taste is just as in-yo'-face as the aroma was. Big milk chocolate sweetness up front that then quickly runs into a BRICK WALL of burnt and grainy malts, roasted coffee, and a swift blast of hop bitterness. Mingling in are more subtle (if you can call anything in this subtle) notes of smoke, molasses, brown sugar, and anise. Finishes burnt, tangy, and bitter, with a feel that just sticks to the palate. The mouthfeel is extremely full bodied, with a big creamy feeling up front, that then melds into a more chewy and thick viscous feel that carries all of these huge flavors nicely. There is some definite alcohol heft to the body. While I can't say that the drinkibility of this is stellar because of it, it doesn't distract from the other flavors and in fact helps bring out a lot of the burnt and bitter notes in this.

A bit of a shocker, I would have never expected a beer this big and bold from Otter Creek. Powerful and complex, the only thing holding this back is the alcohol and I'm anxious to see what some time in the cellar will do for future bottles. If this is the start of Otter Creek's new Imperial Series, well then sign me up for the rest, as this made me a believer!

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Otter Creek's Russian Imperial Stout pours an opaque black body beneath a finger thick head of frothy dark tan foam that holds well and leaves short walls of lacing around the glass.

The aroma is like roasted, oily coffee beans. Not much else comes through except for a gentle waft of alcohol. If you'd like to suggest that there's dark chocolate in there as well, OK, I'll go for that, but mainly what I get is bright, roasted coffee beans. Not coffee, mind you, but just the beans. And solid beans, not grounds.

The flavor offers more complexity. There's an edge of fruitiness, and some more distinct chocolate than the nose hints at. It's also a touch fudge-like. Creamy and smooth in the mouth. And although it's deeply roasty, it's not acidic. It's as if the malt is both toasty and roasty. Mocha Java! The balance is right, and it's remarkably smooth and round - almost to a fault. Some spicy (... that may be the alcohol coming through) and grassy hops give it a little bit of edge at least. It finishes dry, and not overly done with sticky malt or residual sweetness or roastiness; although I should point out that there are some minor phenolics present. The strength is evident in the warming as well, although the alcohol never really makes itself known.

An enjoyable beer for sure, but not particularly engaging given the style. It lacks complexity, or should I say depth? Perhaps both.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.08/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into an imperial pint glass. I’ve aged this beer for at least a couple of years, but unfortunately I don’t know exactly how long.

A: The beer is a deep black color, with a short beige head that fades slowly and leaves a thick on the glass.

S: The aroma contains chocolate, roasted malts, dark fruit and coffee.

T: The taste starts with a very hearty roasted malt character. Then some mildly sweet flavors of chocolate, coffee and dark fruit follow. The hops presence is mild but complementary and brings a very good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and crisp but a bit chalky, medium-to-heavy body, light-to-medium carbonation, finish is dry and slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down dangerously easy, not too filling, strong kick, very good representation of style, this is a very good big stout to drink for a long time.

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Photo of Rifugium
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not sure where I first had this, but I think it was at TJ's, Paoli.

Opaque black pour with a rocky tan head that sank to a ringlet, leaving a bit of lacing on the glass. Aroma was dark malts, dark chocolate, hints of dark dried fruit. Definitely a tasty stout here, dark malts, dark chocolate, a little espresso, burnt marshmallow, notes of plum, and some mild earthy hops coming through. Body was on the fuller side of medium, robust and smooth, tremendously easy drinker for a 10% brew. Very nice overall.

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Photo of russpowell
3.99/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this from Bitterbill, cheers Bill!

Pours like 15,000 mile motor oil with 1 finger of cocoa colored head. Average head retention & lacing

S: Dark chocolate, raisins, & a touch of leafy hops & then some figs & oak notes as this warms

T: Rich dark chcolate, a touch of roastyness, a bit of leafy hops & charred grains up front. As this warms, I get oakyness, a bit of vanilla, black cherry & powdery dryness from the brown sugar I presume, works pretty well here. Plums & figs soaked in booze also show up as well. Finishes with a hint of boozeyness, leafy hops, & figs

MF: Very chewy, fairly light carbonation, a tad syruppy

A fairly dry & complex offering, which slows me down quite a bit. A touch too fruitty for perfection, but this works overall. This is cutting the chill on a fairly cool (not cold) March evening. Another winner from Otter Creek

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.5/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The most honest bottle from the 22 ounce gift pack I bought, Imperial IPA was solid, and the Wine/Beer hybrid was a bit of an abomination. Well this beer sang praises of why it's okay to go extreme every once in awhile. Form DFH brewer was completely able to nail a big bodied dark beer like no other. Poured dark a bit viscous, with heavy mocha/tan deep brown head color and stark black body bubbling up in my chalice. I'm sorry I didn't use the fluted small pilsner glass that came with the sampler. It didn't seem like the right tool for the job. Aromatics big on ripened fruit/hints of coffee/dark chocolate. Plums/brand soaked fruit/dark chocoalte/even a bit of soy sauce like all great impy stouts. Nose nails the style and hides the booze. Flavor wise more of the same dark fruits/soaked in a mild layer of booziness. Again creamy coffee/big dark roasted malt layers/an edge of soy sauce saltiness this bottle will age forever it you can hold onto it. Big body a bit chewy in the best possible way, smooth rolling carbonation mellow at best carries this big bodied Russian Impy Stout quite well. Like I said this was the VIP of the three pack I came across while browsing the selection up at Vintage Estate in Boardman Ohio. Overall drinkability if one and done this is the supreme one beer to drink, if sharing with friends a four ounce pour is just as satisfying even though you'll crave another bottle to cellar.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.95/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Received in a BIF from Ineedabeerhere, thanks man. Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

a - Pours a dark brown, almost black, with 2 inches of brown head. Decent lacing and no carbonation evident.

s - Smells of coffee, roasted malts, chocolate, and a little bit of dark fruit. Pretty nice.

t - Tastes of coffe and roasted malts mostly, but also some bitter chocolate and hops. A little bit of sweet caramel malts later in the taste.

m - High carbonation and medium to full body. Pretty thick.

d - A very solid RIS. Nice roasted coffee smell and taste and the alcohol is very well hidden. I thought the high carbonation hurt it a little bit, but worth checking out none the less. I would try it again.

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Photo of MasterSki
3.91/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this in a trade a while back - can't remember from whom though (think it was Reagan1984). Served in the same weird conic pint glass.

A - Poured with two fingers of mocha foam that dissipates slowly to a thick cap and leaves big bubbly lacing. Pitch black body with only the faintest bit of brown at the bottom. Looks like an RIS should!

S - Cocoa, roasted malts, some tobacco, some sweet and fruity malts, marshmallow.

T - There's a lot of bitterness that makes this seem a little dirtier than the other stouts we've had. Roastiness, dark chocolate, earthiness. Not my favorite collection of tastes and mono-dimensional in the wrong direction. Bitterness persists well into the aftertaste.

M - This is thicker than the bottle d0b had - medium, with light carbonation tingle, and a smooth creamy texture. Maybe that was a bad bottle, because this was pretty good.

D - The bitterness gets a little out of control, but otherwise this is a pretty easy drinking RIS that hides the 10.6% quite well.

I'm thinking d0b got a bad bottle, because this wasn't awful. Still it was probably my least favorite stout today.

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Photo of jwc215
3.91/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours black with a light brown thick head. This has exceptional retention and lacing, especially for the style/abv.

The smell is of roasted coffee and chocolate with some anise and slight charcoal.

The taste is of roasted coffee and chocolate with some anise/licorice and slight acidity. Fruity alcohol makes itself known. It has an earthy bittterness in the finish.

The feel is slightly slick with a body that is full, though not as much as expected/what it could be (from slightly higher than expected carbonation).

Alcohol lingers through the afertaste. Seems more drinkable as it is, as alcohol does leave a burning sensation. I'm thinking that more aging would bring the drinkability up. Competition in this style is rough, but this holds its own. A very enjoyable sipper with a nice complexity and richness in aroma and taste. One of the best-looking brews of the style, to boot!

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.98/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours an opaque jet black in color with some very light hints of dark brown when held up to the light and some extremely light hints of visible carbonation near the surface of the beer. The beer has a quarter finger tall dark tan to light mocha head that reduces to a large patch of medium bubbles with a thin film covering the remainder of the surface of the beer and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of dark roasted malts with notes of chocolate, dark fruits, and light hints of alcohol.

T: Strong flavors of dark roasted malts and chocolate with lighter notes of brown sugar sweetness. Light to moderate amounts of bitterness which lingers slightly.

M: Slightly heavier than medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Light amounts of dryness.

O: Enjoyable and very easy to sip on though it is much too strong to be drank quickly. There is a very nice complexity and the alcohol is pretty well hidden. Definitely one to get again.

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Photo of mothman
4.07/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Brandon, Deleriumfest for this one.

Poured into Boulevard Smokestack Chalice

Pours about ½ finger of tan head. Color is a deep caramel brown, pretty much black. Fades down to a thin layer, not very good retention, but leaves some thin lace rings.

Aroma: Big roasted malt flavor, coffee, raisins, molasses, chocolate. A very sweet aroma almost. It has a slight alcohol flavor to it, almost reminds me of a bourbon aged beer.

Taste: Roasted/smokey malts, chocolate, coffee, toffee, molasses, raisins. Slight booze in the aftertaste. Not that hot, but the alcohol is always a nice touch to an RIS.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, creamy, rich, and slightly hot. Full bodied with a good amount of carbonation. Ends with a very smokey aftertaste that I really am not enjoying that much, pretty dry.

Overall, not a bad RIS. Nothing to special, but a pretty solid brew. I am glad I got to try this one. This one is definitely worth a shot if you get a chance. I am splitting this with my Mom and she is enjoying it as well. My half is going pretty fast.

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Photo of WesWes
4.47/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a pitch black color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is great! It has a warm and rich, malty scent that really showcases the chocolate and roasted malts. The taste is great as well. It has an incredibly smooth, malty flavor that goes down easy and finishes dry with a residual chocolate sweetness. It's adequately bitter with a nice warmth as well. The mouthfeel is good. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. I'm really impressed with this beer. Otter Creek is stepping up to the plate and knocking it out of the park. Great job guys!!

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Photo of GClarkage
4.41/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

05/22/09- Purchased at Mollie Stones in Burlingame, CA.

Presentation- 22oz bottle with no freshness info. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Super black and thick pour. Milk chocolate colored 3/4 inch head on pour which receedes very quicky leaving maybe a spot of lace or two...really looks lifeless after that...a beer of this abv could have a better showing.

Smell- Lucious scent of deeply roasted and semi burnt hops as well as a mild dark chocolate flavor mixed in with a touch of vanilla.

Taste- There are two types of imperial stouts...the deep burnt malts ones and the chocolate hops infusion ones. This one is a combo of both. Very roasted malts with a burnt coffee bean flavor as well. Chocolate is dark and pretty intense. Hops show themselves early and hang around during the aftertaste. Quite a range of tastes.

Mouthfeel- Starts out with a mid level carbonation level which fades to a light level. A slight bit viscous and chewy with a vey large coffee-dark chocolate-burnt malt aftertaste...oh yeah and hops too. Becomes very smooth and fairly creamy.

Drinkability- This one is a good imperial stout from the pop of the cap, which becomes exceptional after the air gets to it and reveals it's exceptional range of flavors. Highly recommended.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.94/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I know that I bought this over at The Fridge a while back, fully intending to "Enjoy with Comrades", but they never came by and it has been in my fridge far too long. The Great Bottle Purge of 2014 continues unabated and now, it is the Imperials' turn to fall!

From the bottle: "Inspired by the 18th century English offering to the Russian Czar. Big malt flavoring and overtones of chocolate and dark roasted malts. Finishes on a smooth and warming sweet note."; Handcrafted in Vermont"; "Enjoy with Comrades. [undersigned] Mike Gerhart Master Brewer"; "Otter Creek Limited Edition"; "Located in historic Middlebury, Vermont, Otter Creek Brewing is the proud brewer of the finest quality, handcrafted ales since 1991."

I used a gentle pour to avoid rousing any les, and then I swirled the beer in the glass to with some cgauge its carbonation. I got a finger of deep-tan/light-brown head with decent retention for my efforts. Color was a dense, deep, dark-brown (SRM = 44), allowing zero light penetration. Nose was rich with chocolate, very reminiscent of freshly baked brownies and much more in keeping with my expectations. Warming, I was beginning to notice fusel alcohol heat, but the chocolate was still prevalent. Mouthfeel was medium-to-full, not as dense as my previous RIS, The taste was very much of a freshly-baked brownie, chewy, dark chocolaty, slightly smoky. I realize that aficionados of the style would find this one less complex, but I found it much more pleasant and therefore more drinkable. Finish was dry, leaving a slightly bittersweet chocolate taste with a slight charcoal smokiness.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.23/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the bottle into a snifter glass.

A real dark mocha and brown chocolate head only about a finger, which subsides to a small collar. Body is a very black walnut and extremely opaque. Scattered leopard lacing. Pretty nice.

Nose has nice chewy toasty grain, and lots of sweet roasty character. Mellow and emphasis on malts. Interestingly not getting hints of chocolate or coffee, but a real simple solid wonderful roast stout classic character. Very nice.

Palate matches much of what is hinted on the nose. Good roasting grains on the mid palate. The swallow brings a nice astringency, good warmth and toast char. Simple grain malt body, almost borderline biscuity with dark malt quality. A light texture, with some chewy quality. As it warms the body sort of weakens though.

Overall though this is a good solid Russian Imperial. Bare bones and simple, but just done well.

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Photo of Gavage
4.15/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours a black color with a dark tan colored 1" head that falls to a thick surface foam.

Smell: strong roasted malts, dark chocolate, some softer coffee tones, and a bit of alcohol are easy to detect.

Taste: the roasted malt profile is big along with a slight burnt woody flavor. Dark chocolates along with hints of coffee linger in the background. Alcohol is warming and the bitterness brings this into check.

Mouthfeel: heavy in body. Lightly crisp to start, smoother at the finish. Aftertaste is long as the burnt tones linger in the mouth.

Drinkability: good for the style as I found myself drinking this a bit quicker than normal. Alcohol levels bring this score down a notch. Very good beer from Otter Creek.

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Photo of johnnnniee
4.5/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a solid black with a huge fluffy tan head that laces the side of the glass all the way down. Aroma is of burnt brown sugar, coffee, a touch of alcohol. Taste is more brown and burnt sugar, some dark chocolate, dark roasted coffee a touch of alcohol and a lingering roast bitterness and alcohol in the finish. Lots of caramel and toffee appear as this one warms. Very complex, very tasty! Thick body, creamy syrupy mouthfeel, low but ample carbonation. Wow I'm impressed! This is one solid Imp Stout, I wish I had bought more than one bottle! Otter Creek welcome back to my craft brew scene.

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Otter Creek Russian Imperial Stout from Otter Creek Brewing / Wolaver's
89 out of 100 based on 282 ratings.