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Siberian Night Imperial Stout - Thirsty Dog Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Siberian Night Imperial StoutSiberian Night Imperial Stout

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1,635 Ratings

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Ratings: 1,635
Reviews: 827
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: 9.69%
Wants: 146
Gots: 200 | FT: 8
Brewed by:
Thirsty Dog Brewing Company visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Dogbrick on 01-13-2003

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,635 | Reviews: 827
Photo of jrallen34
4.15/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2006 12 oz bottle into a snifter.

The beer pours motor oil black with dark tan head. Ok retention and lacing but nothing of note, probably due to age...The aroma is medium strength and starts off very malty with sweet chocolate, a little coffee, cream and then finishes very roasty with lots of roasted coffee and smokiness...The taste is best described as chocolate smoke. Its plain, but easy to drink...Good feel, easy to drink.

Overall, this is a pretty decent imp. Its sweet, and has a ton of smoke, the most i've had in imp. Worth getting if you see it out, wouldn't trade for it.

Photo of sluggermatt15
3.93/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This was recommended to me by the cashier at a local six pack shop. He said this beer was a highly recommended stout and boy, was he correct.

A- Pours a deep brown / blackish color. Head foamed up on me, but was brownish. The lacing dissipated after a little over a minute. Great look to this stout.

S- Heavy chocolate smell, some soy, dark chocolate, roasted coffee. Nice scent on this one.

T- Just about the exact way it smells: thick and creamy with a full body. Mostly tasted of chocolate / coffee. A delicious taste to it.

M- Full bodied, thick, some carbonation. The alcohol is nicely hidden in this one. You don't really taste the alcohol that much, only somewhat at the end, a definite plus.

D- Somewhat drinkable, though I would probably only settle for 1 or 1.5 at one time. Great for kicking back and drinking slowly.

Photo of semibaked
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into my DFH Signature Glass.

A - Pours damn black with a finger of dark brown head that fades quickly.

S - Things start out with roasted coffee then slight sour milk smell, cream, and roasted malts.

T - Wow great balance of roasted coffee, dark roasted malts, cream, sugar and maybe just a slight hint of spices.

M - Big full body, creamy and silky smooth.

D - The smell was a bit off putting for me, but man the taste and mouthfeel more than made up for it, this is a great balanced and super tasty Imperial Stout and a good value too.

Photo of GregoryVII
3.7/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Siberian Night created a moderate amount of head that dissipated quickly, but still left a proper amount of lacing. In the glass it was pitch dark in color, as the name would suggest. Its aroma was bursting with roasted malt character, with whiffs of sweetness and bits of perceived chocolate and bitterness. The flavor was heavy on roasted malts, with suggestions of toasty nuttiness and sweet caramel. As the beer warms the alcohol becomes more of a player with added sweetness and is balanced as the bitter from the roast and the hops step up in concert. Towards the end it coalesces into a bitter chocolate covered cherry. The body is full and the carbonation is moderate.

Photo of spartanfan
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Pours an opaque black with a nice brown head on top. Minimal lacing is observed.

S: Smells chiefly of chocolate and roasted malts. Resiny hops are also present in the nose.

T: Tastes is at first sweet with chocolate and the chages to a roasty flavor and finishes with a bitter hop after taste. Very intense and complex flavors here.

M: This beer is medium bodied, which is a bit of a suprise considering the depth of flavor and the alcohol content. It's not watery, I was expecting it to be fuller though.

D:This beer is a strong one, but the myriad of flavors and aromas keep me coming back for more.

One of my favorite stouts.

Photo of dougofthefuture
3.88/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

After too much cheap wedding beer last night, I am craving flavor. Thanks to brewdan for this one. 2009 vintage into the tulip at beer fridge temp.

A - Dark? Yep - definitely. No light gets through this at all. Only 1 finger head on an aggressive pour. Milky brown head with legs at first, fades to very little very quickly.

S - A mellow roasty quality is present, but not making any statement. I thought it would come out as it warmed, but not so much. What I do get here is good - chocolate, coffee, slight bitterness, and no alcohol heat.

T&M - Plenty of flavor. That hits the spot. This is one smooth RIS - just tons of chocolate roasty goodness, with a nice creamy body that coats the tongue. A slight bitterness keeps things balanced. So little heat! I am sure a few of these would warm you up, but there's certainly no burn. The finish is pure chocolate cream.

D - Given the richness, a little seems fine. It sure does go down easy though.

I paired this with my wife's homemade chocolate chip cookies, and they worked great together!

Photo of Spica66
4.4/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: This is the blackest beer I have even seen. Excellent head with nice retention and lacing.

S: Smells like roast malt. Not smoky, just roasty.

T: Follows through on the smell. Not very complex, just excellent black roast taste. Hardly any alcohol burn.

M: Very smooth beer.

D: This is the easiest to drink Imperial Stout I have ever found.

This will now become a staple in my cellar!

Photo of Adamdc
3.5/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle (received from fellow BA GoOSU) and poured into nonic glass. No bottled-on or freshness dating found on bottle.

A: Jet black pour with minimal ruby highlights when held up to light. Very aggressive pour yielded only a quarter inch of tan foam which dissipated quickly leaving just a covering with some lacing down the sides.

S: Chocolate is the main theme here with a smoky, roasty, maltiness. Very nice.

T: On the first sip I'm surprised at a hoppy bitterness that I didn't expect (or is it from the grain). There's an almost 'medicinal' quality to the taste that isn't very pleasant. I can't find the chocolate and malt that was in the aroma. It's just the bitterness that is taking over.

M: Some reviewers mention that this is medium to full-bodied. I must have the wrong vintage because this appears to be very thin. I'll say 'thin to medium'-bodied. Minimal carbonation, which is fine, but I like these RIS's a little thicker.

D: At 9.2% this is going down very smoothly. This goes down like a porter as opposed to a thick stout.

I've had this beer on 2 separate occasions. A few years back I thought it was one of the best stouts I'd ever had. Then I had it last year and thought it was 'meh'. And now, it's still in the 'meh' category. Maybe this beer has lost a step since it's glory days a few years back.

Photo of WeedKing4
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle pours a dark black with a little bit of foam, forming. The taste is of charred roasted bitterness, with chocolate and coffee mixing in the background. The alc. % is very well hidden as its not picked up in the taste at all. Not a bad stout, not amazing, but its solid.

Photo of muttyd
3.38/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Deep brown, near black pour with a thin tan head. Great lacing as I swirl it around around my oversized wine glass. Great looking stout.

S - Heavy roasted malt aroma. Hints of cocoa, coffee, and some bitter pine hops.

T - Mostly follows the nose, complexities fade away. Roasty/dry finish.

M - Creamy body with a sticky, mouth coating finish.

D - Got this as an extra in a trade. Good beer overall, but nothing I would seek out again.

Photo of Drew966
4.33/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Siberian Night Imperial Night pours black as midnight with a brown head from a brown twelve ounce bottle. It smells like a chocolate milkshake. The flavor is very nice, malty, lots of chocolate. Alcohol isn't really noticeable. A very enjoyable beer.

Photo of Phelps
3.97/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle gotten in a trade at this year's Dark Lord Day. It's been aging since April 09.

Siberian Night is an inky purple-brown with a tiny head the color of light sienna, which dissipates quickly to a thin film, clinging just a bit to the sides. The faintest grape highlights are visible at the edges.

The nose is led by roasted malt, with some lightly bitter coffee and dark chocolate met by the tangy sweetness of sun-dried raisins and cranberries. Vanilla, some earthiness, and the light peppery bite of hops also pop up here and there. Strikes a wonderful balance.

Dry toasty malts dance across the palate in the taste. What fruity tang was there in the nose is here again, gripping the sides of the tongue. Dry and roasty finish. For a 9.5 ABV beer, I couldn't detect any heat whatsoever. The flavors intensify and meld as the beer warms, improving it tremendously. The last sip was the best, and I was sad to see it go.

Medium bodied. Smooth, almost creamy. Swishing this one across the tongue is a joy. Carbonation is understated and perfect.

Basing my thoughts on what others have said about this beer, I'd have to conclude that a year of age on Siberian Night puts it past its prime. It's definitely lost something. That said, it's still a very solid stout, and I'd love to try it again -- fresh.

Photo of jwinship83
4.05/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle with no freshness information drank from a standard american pint glass. been wanting to try this one for a while.

A- this one pours out a dark brown colored body with small ruby red highlights when held up to a light. a finger and a half of coffee colored head forms on top and takes its time disappearing. small rings of lacing are left in its wake.

S- dark roasted malts are the first thing i notice. lots of milk chocolate, and a lesser amount of dark chocolate. a little bit of coffee at the end.

T- the taste starts out with the dark roasted malts. lots of milk chocolate. some dark chocolate as well. the taste ends with a decent amount of coffee/hops. the alcohol is very well hidden

M- medium bodied and i wish it was a little fuller. almost feels fluffy in my mouth. very creamy and smooth.

D- a nice year round RIS that i wish was available in my neck of the woods. its nice to see it in 12oz bottles also. something id pick up every once in a while if i could.

Photo of GregSVT
4.12/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a snifter

A: This pours a deep black with a small tan head that quickly fades to a ring and leaves a tiny bit of lacing.

S: The nose is very rich and inticing. Loads of cocoa, dark fruits, and a bit of coffee. Exactly how a RIS should smell.

T: The taste is a roasty bitterness at first that changes to a coffee flavor and fades to a sweet cocoa flavor with a touch of vanilla on the finish. Most stouts start with a sweetness that fades to a bitterness...very interesting.

M: The feel is creamy but a bit thin for the style. Carbonation is nice though.

D: This is very tasty and I could see me buying this regularly if it was available in my area. I'm sure the ABV will catch up to you after a while though.

The taste is different and relatively complex. Glad I got to try this one and recommend it if you like a good RIS.

Photo of emmasdad
3.9/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours from the bottle like used motor oil, thick and black, with merely a suggestion of thin tan foam. A good smokiness wafts up from the glass, along with some coffee, dark cherries and roasted malt. Not a lot of heat on the palate here, but some good roasted chocolate flavors and a little bit of syrupy sweetness. My first beer from this brewery and hopefully not my last.

Photo of ne0m00re
3.82/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a 12 oz bottle into an oversized red wine glass to capture the aroma.
A: Black with brown hues, it poured with a medium chocolate head that died to a thin film and collar.
S: Espresso, chocolate, bourbon vanilla alcohol, and sweet malt balls.
T: Big roasted malts with a charred smokey lingering flavor. Espresso and chocolate come through, as well as a thin, almost barrel-aged aspect.
M: Not syrupy, but very creamy and frothy.
D: All right. I wouldn't want to have too many in a row.

Photo of jstilwell
4.72/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Received this as an extra in a trade over a year ago, been aging it in my basement ever since. Its dark Black with no light passing through. There is a light brown/off white head which gets darker with swirling. This has solid lasting lacing. Very aromatic for a stout with sweet cream, mild earth and roasted nuts. The first taste is oh so smooth with mild sweetness, followed by a deep creamy nutty malt blast with a milder than expected hop fade. There is little to no bitterness and no cloying sweetness. The aftertaste is pleasant. To me, this one has it all, a full bodied thick velvety drinkable stout. It reminds me a bit of Stone RIS, but is more drinkable while being almost as bold. I'm astonished by this brew and I would Love to get some more. Fantastic!

Photo of WorldWideStout
3.73/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Sam for the stellar extra!

A: Stream of beer between bottle and glass wasn't too dark, but the liquid becomes a very dark brown as it collects. Warm light brown head, and pretty good lacing.

S: Coffee and hops.

T: Follows the nose fairly well. Reminds me of an Old Rasputin, but without the sweeter chocolate notes to balance things out.

M: Lovely. There is ample carbonation, yet it is light, allowing for a creamy sensation.

D: A bit more balance would have helped this one, but it wasn't hard to get through by any means.

Not bad, though much hoppier than I remembered it being. Not something to trade or go ga-ga for, but give it a whirl if it presents itself to you.

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.56/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine April 2007.

Siberian Night has grabbed a few medals from the GABF--two bronzes in 2003 and 2006, plus a gold in 2005--and the attention of beer geeks over the years as well.

A solid two fingers of brown foam subside to a ring of lace; the color is so dark that absolutely no light shall pass through this beer. Commingled roasted grain and a soft blackberry fruitiness, with a touch of malt sweetness; very aromatic. Full, malty body with a mild crispness and a growing smoothness. Velvety malt sweetness is like a fine dark chocolate. Dark-berry fruitiness complements the creamy chocolate flavor, and the roasted finish has a coffee tone. Thin caramel in the middle. The hops stand small when put up against the malt.

Not bad at all. This one may be lacking in boldness, but without a doubt it's one of the most drinkable Imperial Stouts on the market right now. You're better off pairing to complement, take our word for it. Chocolate, chocolate and more chocolate, the darker the better.

Photo of thequeen711
3.52/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Rich, deep chocolate pour, beige frothy head stays awhile, then shrinks to lacing. I am not impressed with the aroma, I can't detect any...the taste is more interesting than the nose...full-bodied taste of chocolate, toffee, and coffee! This is a great offering from Thirsty Dog. I will definitely search this out again.

Photo of MasterSki
4.27/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up at Siciliano's in Grand Rapids about a year ago. No obvious bottled dating. Served in my Half Acre pint glass.

A - Pours with a half-finer of tan foam that dissipates to some light haze and a thin ring. Maybe a few spots of lace. Body is nearly pitch black, with only the faintest glint of red at the bottom of the glass when held to the light. Pretty ominous and imposing, even at only 9%.

S - Charred multi-grain bread, caramel, dark fruits, roasted nuts, chocolate fudge. Reminds me a lot of Ten FIDY, but not as hoppy.

T - Toasted malts, some light dark chocolate, dark fruits, anise. Finishes with light bitterness. Alcohol is very well-hidden. Again, it's very similar to Ten FIDY, but not quite as rich.

M - Smooth, creamy, with light carbonation tingle. The body is medium-full that is appropriate for the 9% ABV. Not much obvious heat. Finishes very sticky and chewy.

D - One 12oz bottle went down quite easy, and I could probably do a second with the excellent feel and an ABV on the lower end of the RIS spectrum. Also, quite reasonably priced - wish this one was available in Illinois.

Photo of kingcrowing
4.45/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Sampled at the 2010 Stout tasting in a Orval Chalice.

12oz bottle.

Pours a very black color with a nice rich and small dark brown head. Nose is sweet with light boozy, very rich.

Taste is very rich and sharp. Lots of chocolate and smoke. Taste is sweet and smooth with coffee on the finish.

Photo of DmanGTR
4.4/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Review from notes on 3/3/10. Thanks for this awesomeness BJ!

A - Very dark brown, nearly black with a dark mahogany hue in the edge. Short lived tan head served in a snifter. Small patches of lace here and there. 4.0

S - Rich in dark, ripe fruits. Raisiny with caramel and light cocoa too. Hint of plums and vanilla to round off the nose. 4.0

T - Lots of caramel and toffee sweetness in the beginning, followed by rich fruit flavors of figs, blackberries, and plums. Roasty finish with chocolate and a hint of charcoal. 4.5

M - Rich and full bodied. Smooth and creamy body with mild carbonation. 5.0

D - Fantastic, I wish they made 750's of this. 4.5

Photo of Magpie14
3.98/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: the pour brought forth a murky darkness. I did get time to gather the inner workings of a few hues during the pour, the most notable being a deeply scorched orange and chestnut with plenty of burnt browns to go around. This was capped off with a mellow coffee-colored foam. A nice looker. Points go out to the handful of interconnected streaks of lace that are hanging around

S: a large portion of the nose is a combination of chocolate, caramel, and coffee. Most of the smell is of heavily roasted malts with possible fudge whiffs wallowing. As smelling continued I found that heavy roasted malts eventually dominate the nostrils. Some grog is present as well

T: the taste has some favorable characters. Maltiness is large and in charge backed by a soft grainy character. In addition to this is a delectable dose of toasted toffee malts and caramel with a free floating coffee bean flavor. The java notes take on a dark roast with mild oiliness, maybe a touch on the stale side. All in all, this a bulky imperial stout with plenty of dark 'n' heavy maltiness with ample sweet notes to challenge the palate

I find it also rather well mannered in the ABV department. Warming enhances flavors (especially coffee) and leaves the moonshine rather hidden. Warming also helps leave a slight tanginess around and about

M: mouthfeel is smooth and mildly chewy. In all honesty I find that it might be a bit thin in comparison to some other imperial stouts. Carbonation is also jabbing at the overall smoothness, not that it is over the top, just that it is noticeable

D: another one in the books. I don't know if this is worthy of another buy? I find it sits in the upper middle section of my imperial stout list, nothing really stands out and nothing is unfriendly. Give it a try and see what happens

Photo of ThoughtPolice
4.4/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Serving type: Bottle (not really a growler)

This is my second review of this beer. (I shouldn't have to cheat the BA review system to do multiple reviews of a beer. I'm going to send you great folks an email.) My love for it has only grown.

App: Beautiful for the style. Super dark, great initial head of one-two fingers. Lingers a bit but subsides to a ring around the glass. Not a lot of lacing. Could improve in this regard, but who the fuck cares about appearances when a beer is this glorious?

Aroma: Smokey, deep, sweet, smells like it would go well with good food. Steak and this beer would make good friends. I will have to try that. A little caramel, bread crust.

Taste: Tastes like smoked out, somewhat bready, chocolate. Not a dominant, overbearing choco-coffee thing, but it's there and it is important. Bread/bread crust taste comes through, especially as you start finishing this beer off. My palette is not well-developed enough to fully understand this beer. I don't care to explain it anyway, though. It's just glorious.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: Not a crushing alcohol MF considering its 9.7% heftiness. Alcohol is actually well incorporated into the flavor scheme, which is probably one of the hardest aspects to achieve in a beer. Usually breweries just try to balance it out with some other flavor to hide the alcohol, but I think it actually plays a part (and a good one) in the flavor profile of this particular brew. I think the 4-pack would be easy to finish off, but it might be a mistake to do if you have to drive home... Luckily, I am home now. Mouthfeel is halfway to a milkshake, if that makes any sense.

Overall: Fuckin'-A. This is in my top 15 beers of all time. I think I pay $2.50 a bottle in 2010 dollars (only the good invisible-impossible lord knows what it'll be with inflation next year), and I think this one is probably one of the best values for your loot in the fancy shmancy beer store (Peabody's in Boone, NC).

Just get some. I will continue to. Thank you Peabody's for keeping it in stock almost always. I'm going tomorrow to grab a 4 pack. 2 will get aged. I am excited.

Take care, beer fiends.

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Siberian Night Imperial Stout from Thirsty Dog Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 1,635 ratings.