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Morimoto Imperial Pilsner - Rogue Ales

Morimoto Imperial PilsnerMorimoto Imperial Pilsner

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466 Ratings
no score

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Ratings: 466
Reviews: 322
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 11.33%

Brewed by:
Rogue Ales visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Pilsner |  8.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
4 Ingredients:
Malts: 100% French Pilsner.
Hops: 100% Sterling.
Yeast & Water: Czech Pils Yeast & Free Range Coastal Water.

74 IBU
80 AA
16º Lovibond

(Beer added by: aracauna on 08-24-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 466 | Reviews: 322 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of cindyjeffsmith


4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

appearance: Crystal clear peach/gold with a big ass white head. Lacing stays on the glass forever it seems. Quite a looker.
smell: Rich floral scents dominate. Some sweet malt in the distant background.
taste: Much like the nose with a more integration of flavors and a nice creamy something. A nice finish, both sweet and bitter.
overall: Not a big Rogue fan but this is nice, well crafted brew.

Serving type: bottle

03-22-2014 21:51:18 | More by cindyjeffsmith
Photo of darktower


3.91/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I got to try this at the HiBREWnation beer tasting event in York, PA. It was poured at the Rogue stand and I only got to try a few ounces. I can honestly say those that those few ounces amazed me. I would definitely have to rank it as one of the best beers I tasted that day (and I tasted well into the double digits).

I found a place that still has a few bottles of it for sale so I'll need to pick a few up and re-review it but I'm excited to have more of it.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2014 17:18:17 | More by darktower
Photo of Hoptometrist


3.75/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served on tap into a Morimoto pilsner glass.

A- Poured a very clear and bright golden pilsner, some light visible carbonation, bright white fluffy head that left minimal lace.

S- Mostly big grape and pilsner malt notes.

T- Big grape, pilsner malt, lemon, grassy, peppery, and cornhusks. This is an intensely bitter pilsner all the way through with a prominent herbal and earthy bitterness on the finish.

M- Very dry, crisp, medium body, smooth, and prickly carbonation.

O- This is definitely the most bitter lager I have ever had and right up there with the most bitter beers I have ever had. Really nice crisp pilsner mouthfeel with a little more body and good flavor.

Serving type: on-tap

02-23-2014 00:31:52 | More by Hoptometrist
Photo of CalgaryFMC

Alberta (Canada)

3.89/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Found this brew, a relatively rare style in these parts, on tap at National Beer Hall in Calgary on 10th Ave. Missed out on the funky bottle but oh well. Arrived in a pint glass (?), a cloudy gold amber color that is of course is on the light end of the Lovabond scale but still manages to look thick and imposing. Smells of concentrated sweet grains, a pungent fruity note like grape juice, another sweet note almost like brown sugar, and aggressive grassy green hops. All of these elements are reflected in the taste ... Nothing tastes quite like an imperial pils. This one is at once rich and sweet, chalky and woody, almost carbolic, and features a heady mix of green and spicy hop flavors along with some equally spicy aromatic alcohol. The thick and chewy body and buttery mouthfeel make things even more satiating. I get heavy sweet dough, dried fruits (currants, sultana raisins), candy apple, and an oaky dryness that does work to cut the sweet grains to some extent. The hops provide some additional woody tannic bitterness and funky gooseberry notes and pine in the finish. A big beer with considerable decoction malt and hop power. A pint is a lot to get through.

Serving type: on-tap

01-28-2014 02:30:22 | More by CalgaryFMC
Photo of stakem


3.86/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

25oz ceramic swingtop resealable bottle poured into a stang. The brew appears a clear golden yellow color with nearly 2 fingers of yellowish stained froth. The cap fades back slowly leaving patchy lace on the glass.

The aroma is quite floral with hops. Some citrus zest and a little grassy overtop a footy grain base that has a fresh footy to almost wheat-like cereal sweetness that brings out a bit of fruity aspects caught between hops and alcohol-like notes.

The flavor and bitter with a grassy to herbal character of hops. The bitterness is slightly oily and piney blending to a bit of sweetness that reinforces some fruity to floral aspect. It is somewhat solvent and boozy with a feel thats at times a little perfumey with hints of sulfur.

This is a medium bodied brew with a moderate amount of carbonation. The imperialized pilsner concept is a little strange especially in this example. The bitterness doesnt seem imperialized but the alcohol and sweetness sure is. That sweetness distracts a little and ruins the overall snap, crispness and ease of drinkability I look for in a good pils. Worth trying but I probably would not revisit this again.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2013 15:19:11 | More by stakem
Photo of CrazyDavros


3.43/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours gold with a small head.
Nose shows light malt, biscuity notes, spicy and herbal hops.
More aggressive flavours, big spicy and grassy hops along with bready and biscuity malt and an assertive bitterness. No sign of the booze.
Could use a bit more carbonation.

Serving type: on-tap

07-18-2013 13:26:47 | More by CrazyDavros
Photo of superspak


4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml ceramic bottle into lager glass, no bottle dating. Pours fairly hazy pale golden amber color with a nice 2 finger fluffy white head with fantastic retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lasts. Dense spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass, with a ton of streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of big apple, pear, bread, cracker, honey, floral, grass, pepper, pine, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance of malt, yeast ester, and hop notes; with good strength. Taste of pear, apple, bread, cracker, pepper, floral, grass, pine, honey, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Good amount of floral/pine bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of light fruits, bread, floral, grass, pepper, pine, honey, herbal, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice balance of hop, malt, and yeast flavors; with a moderate malt backbone and no cloying flavors after the finish. High carbonation and medium bodied; with a very crisp, smooth, and moderately prickly mouthfeel that is good. Alcohol is very well hidden with hardly any warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a damn nice imperial Pilsner style. All around nice balance of malt, hop, and yeast flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

Serving type: bottle

06-10-2013 04:29:48 | More by superspak
Photo of hopsolutely

Ontario (Canada)

3.91/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From notes taken while enjoying a pint last night on-tap at the Kick-Off in Waterloo, ON.

Pours a vibrant golden colour with a limited white head that dissipates quickly. "Czech" forward aroma, that must have been the yeast, as the recipe doesn't include the Saaz hops I'd expected to read. The rich graininess in the aroma carries through into the taste. This is complemented by powerful yeast and hop flavours, ending with a noticeable alcohol warmth. Sweet body of malted grains that leads to an impressive bitterness, that lingers for a long time.

Didn’t expect to enjoy this nearly as much as I did; very impressive flavour profile.

Serving type: on-tap

04-07-2013 19:17:26 | More by hopsolutely
Photo of StonedTrippin


4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I thought they were done with the morimoto brews, so when I saw this I had to pick it up, ignoring the 20 dollar price tag, because morimoto is just a boss. the boss of bosses. anyways, this pilsner pours bright honey colored yellow, with a colossal white head that doesn't relax much at all. the nose is a little sweet, a little floral, and hopped with some noble variety that really gives a nod to tradition in the genre pushing bomb. the flavor is well balanced and surprisingly interesting for a pils, which I usually find so uneventful. floral hop profile, grassy malt bill, and some excellent yeast that is light, but ties the whole thing together and tames the alcohol, which is expertly hidden. would never know this was almost 9% abv. feel is nice too, fuller bodied for the style, and well carbonated. sort of a richness to this that cool. it trumps out the refreshing qualities usually found in a pilsner, but it also adds an element of class and satisfaction I don't usually come away with from a pils. overall an excellent brew, expensive, but damn good.

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2013 17:29:06 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of Siriusfisherman


4.05/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

As big of a pilsner I have ever laid my hands on, and up to this point I have not been impressed with the 'Imperial' versions of this beer style. Morimoto however, really changed my mind as to what this beer style can be. The flavor consists of pilsner malt, big herbal and floral hops, and some sweetness and booziness on the back. The bitterness up front cuts right through all the sweetness though.

Overall, a big tasty pils, I am not sure I love this one all to much, it has a lot of flavor but nothing compared to ales of similar strength. I would recommend it to anyone who is on the fence about it, and I am sure I will try it again.

Serving type: bottle

01-05-2013 02:27:33 | More by Siriusfisherman
Photo of GiantMidget


4.68/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another Rogue in my collection.
Bought at a Wegmans in Collegeville a few weeks ago, pricey at 16.99 so I had very high expectations.
This beer delivered.

I drank this on New Year's Eve to ring in 2013.
What a terrific bottle it is in, never seen anything like it in my journeys.

Poured into a tall pilsner glass, minimal off white head that didn't linger long.
The golden hazy thickness throughout the pour lingered in the glass and it is a beautiful golden color.

The citrus scent mixed with an earthiness along with the Czech malt are evident.

I sipped this and let it last awhile. Wonderful job they did with this Imperial pilsner, the ABV definitely present and enjoyable. This is everything I'd look for in a great pilsner and the hops are terrific. Very good floral presence, maybe a bit of lemongrass.
Enough dryness to balance the slight sweetness of a pilsner. I would drink this again periodically only due to the pricepoint. Otherwise this would be a regular.

The ONLY thing I could say could be improved even a bit, which is minimal (still gave a 4 in the category) is the very slightly thin mouthfeel but it's balanced enough that I would never complain of it.

If you enjoy a good imperial pilsner, or other Rogues, or are feeling like treating yourself, I recommend this one.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2013 02:56:54 | More by GiantMidget
Photo of Cookeeman

British Columbia (Canada)

4.23/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Let me preface this review by saying that I don't normally enjoy Pilsners, mostly because I dislike the Czech yeast finish. That being said, this beer was amazing! It poured a hazy golden straw colour from a very cool ceramic pot-stopper bottle. The first flavour that struck me was honey, thick mellow warming honey. It had much less carbonation than normal pilsners, which I welcomed because it complemented the flavour better this way. The typical Czech yeast finish was totally buried in honey, with some grass and a pinch of hops. If it wasn't $18 a bottle I would definitely buy this very regularly.

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2012 01:01:08 | More by Cookeeman
Photo of Serge

Alberta (Canada)

4.48/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ceramic bottle. A dark golden beer with a bubbly whipped cream like off-white head. The aroma is sweet malty with a strong hop presence giving it notes of grass, herbs, and citrus. The flavor is sweet malty at first, but very soon first the hops hits the tongue with notes of grass, grapefruit, hay and herbs, and then the alcohol comes a long with a power, that makes its presence known, then the alcohol resides a bit, to leave a quite acidic grapefruity note towards the quite bitter end. Now this is a complex interpretation of a pilsner.

Serving type: bottle

10-22-2012 21:06:14 | More by Serge
Photo of ckollias


4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed this 750ml bottle out of a large snifter glass.

A: Pours a very hazy orange-yellow hue with a thin 1-finger white head that quickly dissipates into a wispy lace.

S: Mild grain and malt aroma. Not a huge head here.

T: Huge pilsner malt flavor with a general sweetness – followed a somewhat fruity middle. Hoppy background and finishes on the dry side. Alcohol is masked nicely by the malt.

M: Very strong and boozy. Chewy body and medium carbonation.

O: I’m not a huge pilsner fan – but this beer kicks ass. Very tasty and enough alcohol to make it interesting.

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2012 00:35:29 | More by ckollias
Photo of joemcgrath27

Alberta (Canada)

4.33/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - just a little hazy bright golden, thumb of white head held at a half finger and left some lacing
S - light perfume and citrus, grainy, and a light booziness
T - starts with a mix of citrus hops and a strong mineral flavour, notes of perfume and herb, boozy sweetness, and a raw grainy malt backbone
M - light body, medium carbonated, starts juicy, turns to a mineral quality, finishing with an alcohol dryness
O - don't believe i've ever had an imperial pilsner, definitely enjoying this, much sweeter and maltier than a classic pilsner making it interesting and tasty

Serving type: bottle

08-05-2012 02:28:43 | More by joemcgrath27
Photo of cvm4


3.8/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Awesome looking bottle!

A - Pours a lovely crisp golden yellow. Pretty transparent. The top develops into a bubbly white head.

S - Crisp malts, sweet honey and somewhat grassy.

T - A bit hoppy for a pilsner. Nice grassy/grain notes with a pileup of flavors in the end.

M - Medium bodied, easy drinker.

O - Pretty much what I expected. When the bottle says imperial pilsner, you think pilsner kicked up a notch. I'm usually not a fan of Rogue but this is a good one and could lead others from the BMC category.

Serving type: bottle

07-26-2012 23:40:01 | More by cvm4
Photo of MacQ32

South Carolina

3.7/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a hazy straw/slightly orange color into my brooklyn snifter with a nice dense head of very near white head that slowly dissipates and leaves behind excellent lacing

S - A fairly rich malt character, very grassy herbal hop aromas. Definitely getting some sweeter fruit smells as well which is a little surprising.

T - Traditional lighter pilsner malts with a mostly earthy/grassy hop aroma. Pretty good but one of my favorite things about a pilsner is the dry grassy finish. There are definite mildly tart/funk fruit tastes from what I can only presume to be the yeast which kind of spoils it a little for me. I did not expect that from a pils.

M - Appropriate carbonation (pretty well carbonate, which i would expect from a pilsner). Definitely less than medium bodied @ 8.8% which is pretty impressive.

O - I have only had one other imperial pilsner that i can recall, it was a (local) Holy City Trippin Brick and it was amazing. After having my first rogue xs (imperial IPA) and being totally blown away i was pretty pumped for this one.. although this is definitely a decent brew, there is no way I will ever pay 16.99 for this one again, the bottle alone is awesome and worth at least $7 or $8 I would think but this beer just wasnt quite special enough for me to spend that kind of money on 2 brews. Again, the review is based on quality not taking price into consideration. I'm giving it a 3.5 because taste is most important, and it was sadly my least favorite part of this one.

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2012 02:12:56 | More by MacQ32
Photo of smakawhat


3.9/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the large bottle into both a Pokal and a Pilsner style glass.

A brassy gold yellow, mostly 18 carat in color, slightly dull not totally clear but close, kind of buttery. Nice mix of slow rising cola carbonation, and a shocking white top. Left over scattered lacing as the head slowly settles, pretty good looking.

Even off the pour aromas fill the room. Sticky malts, little honey sweetness, subdued crispness with a large density and no alcohol heat at all. Small airy bitterness, but nothing too extreme.

Taste is a big ambush. Good god is this ever hoppy. Grassy, even almost a little oily finish of hop green rush and pine. Rushing resin and pine finish, no sweetness hinted that comes from the nose. A strong strange sticky yeast sensation also.

Overall not even a taste of alcohol heat, but it's a one trick pony beer, but boy what a trick it is. It gets strangely a bit more interesting as it warms up which is not how I would want this style. But regardless this is one impressive pilsner and it's quite shocking they pulled this off.

Serving type: bottle

05-27-2012 15:08:54 | More by smakawhat
Photo of jgreenearrow


4.28/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml ceramic bottle into a pilsner glass.

A: The beer pours a slightly amber golden color with a thick, fluffy white foam forming at the top of the pour. Substantial lacing remains on the sides of the glass.

S: The aroma is very sweet. Grapefruit, tangerine, and grape juice dominate the nose. Some slight earthiness is also present.

T: The beer is quite sweet at the onset of the sip. Apricot, plum, and tangerine dominate the start of the sip. The typical Rogue yeast flavor profile is on queue. Wheat and grain enters in the middle followed by some bitterness in the finish. Some slight alcohol burn trails the sip, but is well masked.

M: The beer is medium bodied with nice carbonation. It drinks quite easily.

Overall, this is an excellent beer. The flavor profile is complex and bold, as one would expect from an imperial. The aroma and mouthfeel accompany the flavor very well to create an enjoyable beer. The ceramic bottle with the resealable top add a nice touch, although entirely unnecessary.

Serving type: bottle

03-05-2012 03:34:18 | More by jgreenearrow
Photo of ummswimmin

New Jersey

3.53/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I like some of these new styles where ale type hops are added to a pilsner. The Japanese influence is also a great new approach.

I got a fluted glass of this in my local bar. The beer was a hazy, straw color. There was a couple fingers of very light head on top. The foam was very light in color.

The smell was kind of different. It was kind of flowery off the top. I got some sweetness, and the bouquet had fruitiness. I didn't expect this blend of smells.

The flavor was equally light. I would say that this would fit in on a warm spring day. The blend of flavors were very interesting. I feel like I get some white grape. It was almost like a soft grape gum taste. On the back end I got some venous quality.

This is a good beer. It was a different experience from any other beer I have had.

Serving type: on-tap

03-04-2012 01:41:39 | More by ummswimmin
Photo of ales4baldo


3.95/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

P-Seems to have a Japanese presentation. Imperial pilsner for an imperial country.

A-Has a nice cloudy orange cloudy look to it. Nice and foggy as well. Didn't have any head to it.

S-Smells like its a form of rice water diluted in honey. I get a lot of honey smell in here. Tons of malts and a little bit of hops.

T-A huge flavor of honey and sugar. Strong malts and Czech yeast. A strong pale ale. Get that bitter finish.

M-Seems to be a medium to full bodied beer. Lots of flavor for sure. Nice lemon and herb notes. Little orange. Somewhat like a saison.

O-A good beer. A good pilsner with lots of flavor. Nice body to it as well.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2012 02:59:15 | More by ales4baldo
Photo of BeersCriteria


4.35/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a nice golden color with a white head.

S- Floral and citrus aroma with a sweet honey scent.

T- A very good balance of sweet pineapple-like taste and a ripened grapefruit bitterness. The alcohol is well masked as well. Best pilsner hands down!

Food Pairing- Grilled fish tacos or a pineapple empanada.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2011 03:03:52 | More by BeersCriteria
Photo of mrfrancis


4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a cloudy gold with a creamy white head. Looks like a quality pilsner.

S: Aromas of lemon, cream, caramel, and honey are present on the nose. Typical pilsner aromas, but a bit more assertive.

T: Opens tart and hoppy with notes of lemon, grass, straw, grapefruit, and kumquats, but quickly mellows to display malty flavors of cream, honey, minerals, and caramel. The finish is long and tart with notes of grass and citrus dominating.

M: Crisp, dry, and full-bodied with active carbonation.

O: I tend to dislike strong lagers, but this one was a pleasant surprise. Easily the best lager I've tried from Rogue.

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2011 17:56:18 | More by mrfrancis
Photo of ChugginOil


3.9/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy yellow color with ample white head thats stacked. Ample lacing to match.

The nose brings grassy hops, alcohol, and a tad bit of malt.

The taste is very interesting. Grassy hoos are melded with a good amount of booze. A bit of a corn taste is noticed in the background after the booze has mellowed.

The mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

Overall, havent had too many nice pilsners but this is certainly one of them.

Serving type: on-tap

10-19-2011 05:44:17 | More by ChugginOil
Photo of July2Nov


4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Hazy, Golden in color. Smallish head that minimizes to a good lacing around the edges. Btw...the bottle is pretty kickass too.

Smell: Mild amount of hops that melds well with the malts and a great citrus bouquet.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Good funky taste at first, grassy hops really come out with a wee bit of alcohol on the end tip. It's a pretty even-keel beer that doesn't have any peaks or valleys, but it sustains it's flavor profile during it all. Really impressed with this offering.

Overall: Pretty much love all of the Rogue beers that come in the ceramic bottles and this one is no different.

Serving type: bottle

09-06-2011 06:12:33 | More by July2Nov
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Morimoto Imperial Pilsner from Rogue Ales
91 out of 100 based on 466 ratings.