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Imperial Stout - Rogue Ales

Not Rated.
Imperial StoutImperial Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,176 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,176
Reviews: 810
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 12.87%
Wants: 77
Gots: 68 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Rogue Ales visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
12 Ingredients:
Malts: Great Western, Harrington & Klages, Hugh Baird XLT-80, Black, Munich, Chocolate and rolled oats.
Hops: Willamette, Cascade and Chinook. Specialty: Two Secret ingredients.
Yeast & Water: Rogue's Pacman Yeast & Free Range Coastal Water.

88 IBU
73 AA
256º Lovibond

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-21-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,176 | Reviews: 810 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of euskera

North Carolina

4.43/5  rDev +9.7%

2001 Bottling..

Pours out jet black with a small firm head. Smell is roasted coffee with a hop overtone. Taste is enveloping, chocolate on the very nose, roasted espresso and hint of sweetness in the back with the trademark Rogue hop bite at the end, although the hops were surprisingly (and nicely for me) restrained. Overall an incredibly tasty, well balanced Imperial Stout.

08-20-2003 14:44:13 | More by euskera
Photo of BeerBuilder


4.38/5  rDev +8.4%

Pours black with a brown head that diminishes quickly to a ring. The aroma is roasty, and coffee-like. It also has a earthy, almost oakiness to the aroma. The flavor is of deep roasted malts, with expresso-like qualities. It flows to a burnt roasty bitter finish. The bitterness lingers with you until the next sip. The mouthfeel is creamy from the rolled oats and it flows to a bitter finish. A very full-bodied brew. A nice warming, tasty beer.

08-15-2003 17:17:53 | More by BeerBuilder
Photo of Mitchster


4.33/5  rDev +7.2%

Made with 2-row Great Western Harrington, Klages, Hugh Baird Crystal XLT-80, Black, Munich and Chocolate Malts; Willamette, Cascade and Chinook hops; rolled oats; and two secret ingredients.

Bottled in 2001 (Oh so happy that it's 12oz now!). Unfiltered. Opaque, jet black in color forming a dark brown whipped head akin to dense espresso crema. There is a laughable 1/4" thick espresso puck of black yeast in the bottle:) Sheets of Belgian Lace coat the glass beautifully. Retention is excellent. This is a great looking brew. Aroma is intense with prunes, figs, dates, deeply roasted sticky sweet malts, cocoa, espresso, a hint of alcohol, roasted walnuts, and something I compare to amateur homebrew. Mouthfeel is smooth and soft with a pillowy like creaminess at the front. Dense and oily in body with an astringent, burnt finish. Taste is much like aroma with the addition of a sweet licorice sensation in the back of the throat, asphalt sealant, earthy french roast coffee, charcoal, notable peppery alcohol warming the belly, pine sap, and a woody burnt finish. The hop bitterness is pretty intense and seems to linger forever. The draught version is a completely different beast (see my other review). A very good imperial stout with balance thrown to the wind. One 12oz. bottle gives me a pleasant buzz. I have to give the 1st place to Expedition and 2nd to Rasputin for achieving the drinkability and balance that this brew lacks.

26 degrees Plato, IBU 87.5, Apparent Attenuation 77, Lovibond 258.

08-09-2003 22:04:41 | More by Mitchster
Photo of jeffboo


4.33/5  rDev +7.2%

An extremely impressive beer that earns it's right to use "Imperial" on it's label.

A rich, thick black pour with a smallish brown head. The aromas slipping out are coffee,roasted malt, charcoal, and smoke. The rich, full body contain heavanly flavors of espresso and chocolate, plent of fresh roast flavors intermingled with a solid bitterness built on the roast and hops. It's texture is oily thick but still very drinkable with a bitter/dry finish that keeps the glass close at hand.

08-01-2003 21:09:49 | More by jeffboo
Photo of BeerManDan


4.03/5  rDev -0.2%

First of all, if you don't like a really bitter stout, do not drink this stout.

On tap, it poured black with no head. The smell of hops and roasted malts along with a hint of coffee filled the nose. The taste of roasted malts along with the coffee and hops with a hint of chocolate was very tasteful. But, OH SO BITTER. I've never tasted a stout so bitter, but so tasteful!

08-01-2003 14:47:11 | More by BeerManDan
Photo of kevinl6

South Carolina

4.28/5  rDev +5.9%

Rogue sure can brew a nice stout!! I like imperials, so I knew that I would like this one, but I think I liked it even more than I thought I would. As with most stouts, this one is black; however, this one is as black as they come! Also had a nice tan head, particularly for an imperial. Smell is very distinct... roasty, coffee, and a slight chocolate...alcohol warms the nose somewhat (I like that!) Taste is very strong, bitter, malty, and a little chocolate. Alcohol is definately noticeable and warms the throat. Mouthfeel is good and smooth, but not like their other stouts (for me anyway). Drinkability rated a little low for me due to the high alcohol and bitterness. Alcohol lingers on in your mouth after the strong finish. This brew is a very nice overall combination of high alcohol and good taste.....something I like in an imperial. I'm somewhat surprised it doesn't rate a little higher overall....

08-01-2003 03:21:01 | More by kevinl6
Photo of oberon

North Carolina

3.88/5  rDev -4%

Jet black in color with a very slight very dark head,the aroma is sweet like molassis and a little nutty.The taste is very earthy and coffeish with a sweet backbone,the alchol is also prevalent in the finish.This is a mans beer for sure one will do me just fine.

07-30-2003 03:30:52 | More by oberon
Photo of Quaffer


3.83/5  rDev -5.2%

Appearance: This was the black hole of beers. No light got past this thing at all. It had a dense, dark brown head that thinned out into a layer that persisted the entire drink. It left a respectable amount of lace behind.

Smell: At first, I didn't notice much smell to this beer. Then, some floral and perfume-like aromas showed themselves. Not a very good smelling beer at all. This aroma got worse as I continued drinking.

Mouthfeel: A big and creamy, full beer.

Taste: There was not much complexity to this beer at all. It had a big initial heavy roasted malt hit, followed by an HUGE bitterness that was harsh and lingered for a long, long itme. I like bitter beer, but this wasn't enjoyable for me. Maybe it was the type of hops used. This bitterness then gave way to a good old-fashioned nasty aftertaste.

I will steer clear of this beer from now on.

UPDATE 07-25-03

Well, I didn't steer clear of this beer. I just had to try it again. And I must say that for the last couple of months, I always pick a bottle up when I make a run to the store. I'm not sure what happened on that first sampling, but I really enjoy this brew now. Probably not quite as much as everyone else does, but it definitely did not deserve the 2.75 that I gave it the first time around.

07-26-2003 04:23:38 | More by Quaffer
Photo of daledeee


4.53/5  rDev +12.1%

Gave this a 5 for appearance. The darkest head I have seen on a beer. This beer is so dark you can't see any light through the stream as you pour it!! Head disappates quickly but leaves nice lace. Nose is pretty strong. About the same as it tastes. Taste is strong coffee, malt, a hair sweet. Not quite as strong tasting as a couple other stouts I have had. The alchohol is a little noticable. Very clean tasting and well done. Top quality stout. I want to try the Chocolate one now. I already know the Shakespeare is good.

07-15-2003 16:08:37 | More by daledeee
Photo of frank4sail

New Jersey

4.63/5  rDev +14.6%


Dark black opeque look. Thick milk chocolate one inch dense head. Wonderful sticky mustache-on-the-lip style lace. Fresh grassy hop and sweet malt nose. Dense thick rich mouth. Upfront bitterness is mellowed by a rich dense sweet roasty malt base. It also has a big bitter expresso finish. The tongue is left dry with a hint of bitter dark chocolate. Complex, rich, and bold. Rogue to the core..

07-14-2003 18:53:13 | More by frank4sail
Photo of BierReise


4/5  rDev -1%

Man is this a bitter Imperial. Black like used motor oil and nearly as thick. Active carbonation upon openeing the bottle and a thick dark head formed. Lacing is good. Kind of a bitter roasty aroma but nothing really comes to mind. A bit of coffee and hops. Alcohol is noticable. Super smooth palate and a nice warming bitter finish. Flavor is roasted malts, hops, alcohol and cocoa. A little more bitter than I like in this style.

07-13-2003 17:29:16 | More by BierReise
Photo of TheDM


4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

This brew pours a small brown head of finely sized bubbles with a pitch black opaque body. As one drinks from their mug, the lasting head leaves behind a wonderful clinging vine lacing. It has a typical stout strong coffee aroma with a very smooth, for a stout, initial taste and a strong coffee finish. I really enjoyed drinking this brew. One of the better stouts I have tasted.

07-13-2003 08:47:44 | More by TheDM
Photo of GreenCard


3/5  rDev -25.7%

Sampled at Rogue Brewery in Newport, OR.

Appearance: obsidian black, creamy dark tan-green head, lacing

Aroma: hops, molasses, soy sauce, smoke, hops, coffee

Flavor: dark raisiny sweetness, black coffee bitterness, salt, touch of almondy sherry oxidation, highly bitter finish, slight tang

Mouthfeel: full bidy, tannic astringency, slick feel, the fact that there was no alcohol burn despite the 11% abv is impressive

Overall Impression: I know it's probably blasphemous, but I'm not a huge fan of Rogue's beers. I've tried 9 or 10 of them and they were all pretty aggressively bitter, even their American Amber was assertive. Finely crafted beers and a brewery that deserves a lot of respect, but I find the high hop rate a bit boring. It's pretty easy to throw a ton of hops in a beer. I must admit, I'm not much of a hop-head, so take my Rogue reviews with a grain of salt. If there's a Rogue ale that is balanced, I'd like to try it.

07-07-2003 16:07:01 | More by GreenCard
Photo of CharlesRiver


4.22/5  rDev +4.5%

Had this on tap today at Redbones. Poured pitch black in color, kind of like the background of this site. Good size copper head that left a beautiful lace as I drank. Malt, coffee, hops, tea, and chocolate are what I got from the smell. The tast was similar but but more coffee and malt notes coming through. The alcohol was present more in the aftertaste than anything. It wasn't overpowering but I knew it was there.

I guess that I have to compare this to Storm King which is one of my favorite Imp Stouts. The Storm King seemed to have more hops. I want to try the Rogue in a bottle and compare.

07-03-2003 13:24:43 | More by CharlesRiver
Photo of jcalabre


4.1/5  rDev +1.5%

Appearance: It is a muted black with a quickly disappearing brown head.
Aroma: The nose is both musty (cellar-like) and malty
Flavor: This Imperial Stout has a very full mouthfeel. It's sticky on the tongue w/ various nuances of chocolate, roasted grain, molasses. The alcohol, initially well hidden, shows up quickly.
This is simply a beautiful imerial stout.

06-26-2003 18:42:01 | More by jcalabre
Photo of tavernjef


4.75/5  rDev +17.6%

Color is a very unique purpley dark brown raisin hue, very thin lusterous thick head of spongy light brownness. Very thin web-like stitched stringy lace in minimal amounts.

Smells way complexing, I get a earthy dark mustyness, molasses, licorice, dark cough syrup, a bit medicine-like, slight coffee note, and whiskey-like alcohol. Its all great but it took lots of swirling and big whiffs to detect all its subtlities. Once you get in there its a whole lot of nose action.

Hefty flavors of very dark and rich roasted malts, black malts, and chocolate malts, thick, luscious, chewy, sticky complex layers of molasses, dark chocolate thats a deepening sweentess, some coffeeness, with nice bittering hops and a lingering dryness lightly dancing after each sip all the way into the finish.

Feel is full, firm, bold, creamy, and above all, quite easy and mellowing with a nice bittering bite near the finish and a great lingering hold and one hell of a warming quality. The warming is the only thing that keeps this from being completely drinkable, its a sipper for sure, and a good one at that. One hell of a excellent Imp. stout. Top notch all the way.

06-24-2003 20:02:38 | More by tavernjef
Photo of freed


4.3/5  rDev +6.4%

This beer made the others around it appear darker. Its a very dark brown. Amazingly, it still appears as brown rather than black. Possibly due to the low evening sun, or because the scant bubbles forming the head look as if they are made with chocolate.

The smell is slightly alcoholic, slightly malty, and even a tiny hint of hops. The taste is big. It slips onto the palate smoothly, but there is enough flavor that you may need to swallow twice. Like the smell, there is a slight alcoholic taste though the immense coffee/chocolate taste all blend to create a surprisingly smooth drink. This is only served by the glass, and that's plenty.

06-24-2003 18:04:33 | More by freed
Photo of clvand0


3.48/5  rDev -13.9%

2002 Edition. This beer poured a very dark color with a small head that settled toward the center of the glass. The aroma was very strong and sweet - chocolate malts, coffee, and alcohol. The flavor is much the same as the aroma. Some alcohol and a hint of chocolate and coffee on top of the malts. Very thick body. This is a good beer, but I don't think I could have more than one in a setting.

06-17-2003 18:44:21 | More by clvand0
Photo of cretemixer


4.25/5  rDev +5.2%

Bottled in 1996 7oz bottle

Pours a viscous black with deep garnet hues around the edge of the glass. No head whatsoever.
Thick aroma of rich, dark chocolate cake soaked in whiskey. Smells much like an Irish cream liqour.
Bitter chocolate taste. The sweetness in the aroma is nowhere to be found. Roasted malts make themselves known as the beer warms a little more. Alcohol warms the body. It becomes dryer towards the beer's end and a little bit astringent.
Slick & thick full body with carbonation that checked out long ago on this bottle. An excellent Imperial to serve with desert or as a desert in itself.

06-16-2003 19:31:16 | More by cretemixer
Photo of WaltTrombone

New York

4.3/5  rDev +6.4%

Bottled in 2001, served at 50-55F Cellar temp.

This beer poured a viscous black, coal mine at midnight black, collapsed star/absence of light black, motor oil left in for 12,000 miles black. BLACK! (Did I mention it was black?) It was a black and stormy night, with a dark brown head and lace.

The aroma was burnt malt and espresso. The taste was (also) burnt malt and espresso, with the addition of bitter hops, cherry, and prunes. It had a thick, syrupy, oily mouthfeel. The finish was bitter hops and charcoal, with an alcohol bite. If I didn't know it was 11%ABV, I would have guessed around 8%. The high ABV is hidden in the complex flavors and texture, and only pops out a little in the finish.

BLACK POWER, indeed!

06-03-2003 12:20:57 | More by WaltTrombone
Photo of ADR


3.95/5  rDev -2.2%

2002 vintage...

Thick and black opaque pour, better "head" than I hoped for -- but that's just a skim of dark red. Straight string laces. Sweet licorice and berry aromas, a sense of lurking java oiliness. Huge mouthfeel, plenty of chocolate and espresso but with that licorice anise coming back very strongly on the tails of a considerable hop assertion. Finishes coffee-malty overall, but the aftertaste gradually establishes an enormous bitterness, almost ash-like. Meets qualifications for the style (great body and plenty of alcohol) but here's why its not at the top of my list -- not the fruitiness of Storm King nor the malty deliciousness of a Samuel Smith. Shakespeare still reigns as Rogue's finest "Stout", to me...

05-18-2003 12:53:55 | More by ADR
Photo of PhantomVodoo


4.08/5  rDev +1%

Bottled in 2001.
Opaque black in color. Head is quite possibly the darkest brown I've ever seen on a beer. Head is of good volume, retains well, and leaves lace. Lots of sediment on the bottom of the bottle.
Aroma of chocolate, molasses, and alcohol with a fruity tone to it.

Taste follows the aroma. Bitter chocolate, molasses, roasted malts, alcohol, dark fruit notes, and hop bitterness. One full- flavored beer to say the least.

Good mouthfeel. This one is thick and syrupy as you would expect.
Good drinkability if you can handle all that this one has to offer.

Overall, a good imperial stout, but I personally prefer North Coast Old Rasputin and Victory Storm King over the Rogue. They're not as heavy on the molasses as this one. I picked up my first Stone Imperial Stout today so it will be quite interesting to see how it compares to the above mentioned 3.

05-15-2003 21:51:38 | More by PhantomVodoo
Photo of joebeerdude


4.9/5  rDev +21.3%

This is the best Imperial Stout I've had and for now the best beer I've ever had. I've tried Bell's Expedition Stout, Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout, Arcadia's Imperial Stout, Victory's Storm King, Samuel Smith's Imperial and Avery's "The Czar". My explanation of this stuff may not be as eloquent as a some of you other seasoned beer pros out there but to me it's just plain smooth. Samuel Smith might be smoother but it has too much other fruity stuff going on it which makes it a little confusing as to what it really is. The Rogue has a simple and not overly complicated taste. The alcohol taste jumped out at me with Arcadia and Storm king but not with Rogue. There is some kind of "edge" to it which I can't explain too well but I like it . Of course it is super thick -- almost liquor like. It pours with a head as good as any of the other Imperial's I've tried. I also liked the bottle design (12 oz.) . It gave the ingredients -- 14 of them ! How many beers do you know of that are made with "Free Range Coastal Water" ?? Maybe that is the secret to it's smoothness. Bottled in 2002.

05-09-2003 20:12:46 | More by joebeerdude
Photo of dmarch


4.75/5  rDev +17.6%

It pours very thick and black with a nice tan head. Molassas and coffe are presant in the aroma. The taste is of molassas and some chocolate with the finish of cascade hops. This was bottled in 2001 so it is about 2 years old. I'd say it aged very well. It's an imperial stout that I'm surprised isn't talked about a bit more. This should be considered on the same level as stone imperial stout and storm king.

05-08-2003 16:57:01 | More by dmarch
Photo of pheurton


4.7/5  rDev +16.3%

2001 vintage: pours pitch black with an awesomely dense dark brown foaming head. cool cascading effect i rarely see from bottled (non-nitro) beers. nose is full of dark roasty burnt fruit imperial aromas. mouthfeel is ultra smooth, dark, and creamy. the roasted burnt fruit flavors battle with a significant hop presence to create undescribeably complex yet completely well integrated taste. the finish lasts forever. this brew is at the top of the imperial heap for me. the sheer massiveness of this brew knocks it down a notch in it's drinkability, but hell, this is definitely some sippin' tea.

05-01-2003 18:04:55 | More by pheurton
Imperial Stout from Rogue Ales
90 out of 100 based on 1,176 ratings.