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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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1,564 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,564
Reviews: 816
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 9.66%
Wants: 141
Gots: 163 | FT: 9
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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Dogbrick on 01-13-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,564 | Reviews: 816 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tmoneyba
4.28/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The pour was black with a medium brown head that did diminish over the course of drinking with excellent lacing. The aroma was complex with toasted malt, molasses and coffee. Full body with creamy texture that finished with light alcohol. Full bittersweet flavor with a medium to full bittersweet finish of long duration.

This is a standout brew.

Photo of Riverwarrior
4.13/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

S = Burnt/roasted malts, chocolate and caramel, a little alcohol in the background.

T = Milk chocolate and roasted coffee upfront, dark fruits (mainly raisin) in the middle, with some vanilla rounding out the flavors. Just a hint of alcohol was detected without any burn. The finish was an inviting mocha flavor that lingered.

MF = Rich and full bodies. Carbonation was very low. Creamy and very smooth.

Overall, a very enjoyable RIS and highly recommended.

Photo of sprucetip
4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Perhaps my first Ohio beer? Wicked smooth and yummy 12oz bottle into goblet.

Black, hint of highlight at the very top, but not really. Moderate mocha head fades fast to ring and thin film. Not much lacing. Very active carbonation.

burnt/roasty, molasses, vanilla, woody. All restrained and balanced. Not strong, but fairly complex.

Very complex, delicately balanced and smooth blend of caramel malty sweetness, molasses, roasted grains and a subdued roasty and hop bitterness. Very nice.

Mild carb, rich, thick, full, velvety smooth and creamy, some warming and a very clean finish. Wow.

Gone way too soon. Were it not for the potentially debilitating abv, I could pound this sipper. Yum!

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

A - Thick and dark. Had to force some head at the top. Dissipated well but poorly stuck to the glass.

S - Sweet caramels and chocalte. The high abv slightly opens up your nostrils to well balanced and creative aromas.

M - Creamy, full, and more carbonated than it pours.

T - Well balanced flavors that are just slightly complicated to where it's a nice pattern of sweet to mocha to alcohol to dark chocolate. Finishes smooth and it's almost a shame that it has to leave your mouth.

D - Yep, will be doing this one many more times, no doubt in my mind.

Photo of MaineBirdMan
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Are Russian nights this dark!? I really enjoyed this Stout. There seemed to be yeasty/chocolate taste. My first sip was heavy on the alcohol side but gently subsided. I found myself enjoying the feel this particular stout left on my tongue. The color was oil black. I don't think I could drink too many but would be willing to give it a try!

Photo of Ineedabeerhere
4.05/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Auslander and the Black Booty BIF, I'm sipping on this one out of my Bruery-branded Tulip.

Pours pitch black, one finger mocha head that recedes quickly leaving some abstract spotted lacing.

Deep aroma of roasted malts, chocolate and a bit of licorice. Alcohol slightly present.

Nice creamy mouthfeel with plenty of roasted malt- slightly sweet. Alcohol not as present in the taste. Very smooth- a bit of licorice plays through. As drinkable as you could ask for at 9%. Glad I got the chance to try this one- it could only improve with age.

Photo of discovolante65
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured in a Draak Tulip.
No light will penetrate this. Not much carbonation, very little head that disappeared into a thin small collar with a few coffee flavored frog eyes left around.

Smell is like cocoa powder with a good malt sweetness in there. I don't really smell anything like coffee/burnt, but I get a little alcohol in there. Nice though.

Taste is that of unsweetened chocolate, burnt coffee, and dare I say some hops/citrus in there as well. Not bitter at all and doesn't linger as much as others.

Mouthfeel was a little thin, and I was quite surprised at the level of carbonation, after seeing nothing rise from this on the pour. Given the ABV's, it never turned "hot" with alcohol after it warmed up.

Drinkability - I had this on tap last week in a 42 months aged version, which was incredible, and chose to buy a six at less than $10. I had two while reviewing this, so it's a keeper, and one you can enjoy more than one of.

Photo of rayjay
4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks for the trade to jmacdaddy2008 and thanks to Kirok1999 for introducing me to 4 bottles of it through extras. Never heard of it before that but it became one of my favorite imperial stouts. Good both fresh and when aged for 3 years +

Oily dark black beer, lots of black patent suspected. Minimal head, with only a few tiny islands of chocolate milk colored bubbles, making for one good looking beer.

Rich and estery nose. Notes of dried plums and apricots, isopropyl alcohol, espresso, rich licorice, bitter roasted malt and barley, and generous hopping, on top of a sweet and chewy malt body.

This is a fairly traditional imperial stout, sans the British yeast; I suspect something simple like White Labs 001.

Alcohol presence, but no alcohol burn. I like my imperial stouts around 9% like this and not up into the stratusphere (12-18%); I feel beers like this showcase big mouthfeels and rich flavors very well.

Superb beer. Cheer!

Photo of Jmamay22
3.93/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

It is a bitter cold night here in the city and although I've never been to Siberia, tonight's weather is not unlike what I imagine life is like in the Russian tundra. What better beer to warm my spirits than Siberian Night? A first beer from Thirsty Dog for me.

Not a hint of light peaks through this motor oil black beer. I can clearly see myself in the glass due to the opaque nature of the beer. Very little carbonation evident and as such very little head. The dark mocha colored head that does appear quickly fades to a thin whisper of a collar. Chocolate dominates the scent that is highlight by the roasted malts. The alcohol is evident through the nose. but fits the style and refrains from overwhelming or creating any unpleasant astringency.

The first sip reveals a greater level of carbonation than I anticipated as I watched the beer flow into the glass from the bottle. This isn't to say that the carbonation level is high, but that it is most certainly present. The mouthfeel does come off somewhat thin given the style, but manages to coat my tongue with plenty of bittersweet chocolate and slightly acidic roasted flavors. Finishes with a semi dry alcohol warmth with a kick of hops to balance out any residual sweetness. A fine example of the style as Thirsty Dog recreates a more classic example rather than an over the top experience presented by many other American breweries. Whether that is good or bad is likely a manner of personal tastes and mood. Regardless this beer is worth trying.

Photo of GRPunk
4.18/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a tulip glass.

A- The head was very minimal and dropped to a light lace as quickly as it was poured. Just the slightest of brown bubbles remained at the edges and a few sticky spots left on the glass. The body was nearly black with dark brown at the edges.

S- It had a rich aroma of powdered milk chocolate, coffee, and lesser raisin scents.

T- The flavor was great. Complex and rich with more of the coffee and chocolate tempered with some citrus-like hops. Later there were more roasted-grainy flavors. It wasn't as powerful as some other RIS offerings, but was comparatively smoother. More of the raisin flavors and rough edges came out with a little warmth.

M- Pretty smooth. It had some light-medium carbonation, a slight hop tingle, and fairly well hidden, alcohol accents. There was a slightly grainy finish.

D- It's a really easy drinker, especially considering the ABV. I'd definitely drink it again. At the price, I'd say it hangs with a lot of the higher priced competition.

Photo of CrellMoset
4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2005 Siberian Night, on tap at Capital Ale House, Richmond, VA, downtown location, on January 26th, 2009 at Black Moonday.

Appearance: Arrives a dead-looking, thick brown bodied brew with faint ruby hues that make themselves known only upon intense examination. Almost no sheen on this one - the head had faded by the time it arrived - and only a thin collar of off-white lace. Though I've never been to Siberia, I imagine that this is perhaps what a night there would look like.

Aroma: Cocoa ahoy! Incredibly sweet-smelling - though not quite sticky, as there are plenty of lighter estery notes - with the dominant note being thick, decadent milk chocolate, though raisins, light herbal coffee, and caramel aren't far behind.

Taste: More milk chocolate here, sweet, creamy, and rich, but also tons of raisins, yogurt-like notes, a few lighter fruity notes (a little unexpected but a very nice addition nonetheless), a few wholesome malty/oat-esque notes, definite currants, and hints of molasses/brown sugar. Malted milk balls, perhaps? Regardless, this one's very well-blended, very smooth, and more complex than the recently bottled version I had not too long ago.

Mouthfeel: Even and medium bubbled, with a surprisingly large amount of carbonation that cuts through the relatively thick body quickly and easily.

Drinkability: Age did this one quite a number, in a good way. Smooth, easy-drinking, tasty, and aromatic, with not even a scintilla of heat. I'm glad I have five of these bottles lounging away in my cellar right now - give this one three years and it turns into a beast of a delicious brew.

Photo of Bung
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle-->tulip glass.
Dirty engine oil black pour, dark tan head arises then recedes into a ring around the edge of the glass. Smell of roast coffee, malt and mild mocha. Big full bodied, not too much not too little carbonation. Tastes chocolately coffee upfront. Mellows slightly with some malt. Slightly chewy straighforward RIS. The roast coffee bitter with a little mocha lingers nicely quite a while. Maybe just the tiniest bit of sourness, which prevents it from getting above a 4. Drinkability on par with others of the style. Overall a solid representation of the style. Much better than the porter I had of theirs.

Photo of WakeandBake
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark black with a thin brown head and only a little lacing. Big aroma of bittersweet chocolate, coffee and a lots of dark roasted,almost burnt malt. Slightly sweet for an imperial stout,Initial flavor of slightly roasted caramel and molasses with a malty smoothness all the way through, a slightly boozy nutty coffee finish. Great body, a very good beer,very well done.I wish I had more.

Photo of GJ40
4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sampled on tap at Track 84 in Warwick, RI for only $4 a glass.

A - Jet black with a moderate brown head and good lacing.

S - Roasted malt with some chocolate and hop aroma.

T - Very balanced and complex mix of roasted malt, molasses and a hop bitterness that lingers nicely. The alcohol is well hidden.

M - Syrupy and smooth with a low carbonation. It really sticks to your mouth.

D - Very smooth and easy for such a big, dark beer.

Photo of wisrarebeer
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: jet black, opaque, poured with nice head but quickly dissipated
S: chewy caramel, burnt roasted malt, not sweet, enticing
T: very, very good - caramel, burnt roasted malt
M: easy drinking, not cloying, velvety
D: very drinkable - ABV is not incredibly noticeable

Photo of zeff80
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured out an opaque, jet black color with a small, caramel colored head. It left some thin rings of lace.

S - It smelled of chocolate and molasses. A very sweet nose.

T - It tasted of roasted malt and sweet milk chocolate. It had subtle coffee notes and hints of boozy alcohol.

M - It was smooth and creamy. A medium-bodied RIS.

D - This is a really good brew. My first Thirsty Dog was a good one.

Photo of Beejay
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark, light the soul of the devil! This is thick like oil, with a dark tan foam on top.

S: Rich chocolate, and heavy malt...

T: Rich rich sweet goodness.. A little bit of bitter in there, but it is bitter like nice dark chocolate is bitter. Malty and delicious. That's good squishy!

M: Thick and oily.. but with this beer it matches well with the taste. Get out a knife and fork for this one..

D: Boy howdy! One of my favorites.. don't think I could do a pitcher of it, but a few would be just fine. This is velvet in beer form.. Delicious dark and malty.

Photo of waltonc
4.22/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Super dark brown, if not black, with a not-very-large tan head.

S: Milk chocolate is the first thing that comes to mind. Nothing comes to mind after that.

T: More chocolate goodness, dark roasty malts, not a ton of hops, somewhat sweet.

M: Medium/thick mouthfeel, medium carbonation.

D: Very drinkable RIS. I'm a fan of 9% ABV. Not outrageous, but there's still a kick.

Photo of sleazo
3.95/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A_Pours a rich opal black colour with a thick two finger coffee hued head. Nice retention and lacing.

S_A bit sweet like a milk stout but mild overall.

T_The flavour is also reminiscent of a milk stout. There is a strong lactose taste here backed up by some coffee, subtle smokiness and a bit of cola. The finish is acidic and mildly bitter. There is a good balance between the elements.

M_A bit thinner for a RIS with a subtle carbonation.

D_If I had to do a blind taste test, I would say this would be either a strong milk stout or a Baltic porter. Kind of a hybrid between the two. Either way I am digging the end product.

Photo of MMAJYK
4.05/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A. Deep dark night little to no head except a light film.

S. Cherries, dates, roast, smoke, chocolate, cocoa, and toffee.

T. Graham crackers, chocolate, roast, smoke, and raisins.

M. Light and slick in the mouth. Much like a porter.

D. While it is very porter like, it adds to the drinkability of this brew. Nice and malty, but balanced with the IBUs too.

Photo of ottovon
4.05/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I got to try this thanks to Auslander.

tasted on 12.22.08

A: pours a dark brown color, with a dark tan heard. there is little to no lacing.

S: sweet, malty, roasty, hints of coffee and chocolate.

T: some sweetness from the alcohol, can tast the roasted malt. finishes with hints of coffee and chocolate.

M: very smooth with a bite from the alcohol.

D: i thought this was a good brew. i would definitely drink this again if i could get it.

poured from a 12 oz bottle into a nonic.

Photo of monoXcide
4.08/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

My first RIS and I am not disappointed.

Appearance - Pours black as midnight with a thin brown head and good lacing

Smell - Dark chocolate with burnt characteristics with the chocolate smell dominating.

Taste - An up front dark chocolate flavor that quickly progresses toward bitter. A little too bitter for my taste though but if you like bitter then you will like this from start to finish.

Mouthfeel - This one is carbonated just right and I can easily let it linger before gulping it down.

Drinkability- I could have another one of these but after two I would have to stop. The 9% avb and the bitterness keep this from being something that I would regularly have one right after the other.

This was pretty good and an ok introduction to the style. Makes me want to try Stone's RIS next and see how that measures up.

Photo of Wackyfoot
4.85/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle picked up at a great beer store in PA on my last east coast visit. Pour is black as the night, with a thin head that fades away gradually leaving nothing but the darkness. One of the smoothest stouts I've ever had, dark and oily and if it weren't for the high alcohol content it would truly be smooth enough to session. Outstanding example of the genre.

Photo of JDK
3.75/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very dark pour, 1/2 inch head that quickly disappeared.
Nice chocolate, dark espresso coffee taste with a hint of semi-sweet malts.
Leaves a nice finish on the palette, semi-sweet chocolate
Smells of burnt malt and roasted coffee.
Overall a nice brew and worth a try

Photo of UA8
4.03/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Wow I'm starting to think that I should just skip this section for imperial stouts....lets see its black with a thick tan head blah blah...but on serious not it looks very tasty.

S- Dominated by the scent of heavily roasted malts with light dried fruit and charcoal notes.

T- Malts may actually be a bit over roasted super burnt charcoal leads with a mid note of slight caramel sweetness and finishes big and herbal bitter in the cheeks.

M- starts kinda bright and refreshing then moves to a nice mouth coating feel.

D- Its a really nice effort from a small brewery. I would like it a lot more if they could up the viscosity and cut back slightly on the malt roasting I felt that the charcoal notes came through a touch too strong. I still would suggest giving it a try.

Siberian Night Imperial Stout from Thirsty Dog Brewing Company
93 out of 100 based on 1,564 ratings.