Cryptical Imperial Stout - Starr Hill Brewery
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Ratings: 87 | Reviews: 17 | Display Reviews Only:
3.96/5 rDev +10%
In true "Russian Impaerial" style, the common roast flavor of stout is met with subtle fruit and spice elements. Starr Hill doesn't mess with the recipe too much as its these finesse elements that provide its own complexity and charm.
Cryptical pours with the darkest of dark brown hues and even black though its center. Its certain tar-like appearance allows for a slow and frothy lather to build upon the beer, lasting half the session. Its broken lace is somewhat sparse but only halts when does its delicate creme.
Bold roast aromas leap out immediately, bringing with it the scent of molasses and burnt toffee to balance the char. Dark roast coffee, dark chocolate and an earthy walnut note keeps the charred scent relegated to campfire; and so do the fruity aromas of plumb, grape and licorice spice.
Its taste is lead by the burnt sugar and charred toast flavor as molasses and toffee offer the counterpart to burnt embers, dark-roast coffee and cocoa powder. As the beer crosses middle palate, a fruit-filled center of plumbs, grapes, cherries and blackberries weave into a fennel-type spice for the culmination of licorice and then trailing with a spiced rum alcoholic finish.
Its full and creamy body is assisted by ample malt sweetness and stern carbonation. But once the carbonation lifts and the bulk of sweetness subsides, the beer lightens considerably late. As the beer closes with spicy rum-like alcohol, fruit acidity and mild; it lingers long and indefinite.
Its becoming rare to find truly "roasty" Imperial Stout with those subtle nuances of fruit, spice, earth and rounded sweetness. But with Starr Hill's dedication, the style is in good hands!
02-21-2014 17:09:40 | More by BEERchitect
3.85/5 rDev +6.9%
First had: on tap at TJ's, Paoli, PA
Served in a snifter, dark brown-black pour, with a small, tan head; moderate retention and lacing. Aroma of roasted malts, coffee, hints of anise. Roasty dark malts, pretty typical stout material, ntoes of coffee and anise detected in the aroma, with a slight earthy hop presence. On the heavier side of medium-bodied, soft carbonation, fairly smooth, but not quite as rich as many of its peers. Pretty solid basic stout overall.
12-19-2012 04:59:54 | More by Rifugium
4.03/5 rDev +11.9%
Birthday gift from "bro" Artied2... 750ml bottle, with no freshness dating visible...
Using a small DT tulip, this bier has an opaque, dark brown color. Head is frothy and rocky, nicely beige colored, and lasts well at about 1/2"... Lacing? Quite nice and lasting well... Aroma has some bitter, burnt notes, plus some licorice and a little florality. The bier passes rather smoothly down the hatch, and the body is medium at best. With this style, I'd like to see more "oomph" and heft bodywise.
Flavor is malty and roasty, with dark choco, cocoa and some espresso notes. A little bitter coffee is also present, plus licorice and floral, flowery hopping in the dry finish. Verry similar, imo, to Smutty RIS.... Thnx Bro!! Prosit!
4.03/5 rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
12-12-2012 23:07:39 | More by Bierman9
4.47/5 rDev +24.2%
Served in a ten ounce snifter at Brixx in Charlotteville. From notes. Reviewed 20 June 2011.
A: Dark black with a big head. Completely opaque.
S: Roasted malts. Sweet; vanilla beans or bourbon-soaked oak? Ensorcelling.
T: Mmm...Sweet-bitter coffee beans soaked in bourbon. The maintaste is full of dry hops, huge malts, and fantastic stout flavours. Though the main body is sadly short, the bitterer endtaste lingers.
M:A lightly drying beer, bitter so, and rather substantial.
O: I was sufficiently impressed by this beer that my (sober) review is full of modifying expletives, eliminated here for propriety's sake. It has all the flavours a double stout should and is obscenely drinkable. I will definitely have it again; highly recommended.
10-09-2011 19:49:45 | More by AgentMunky
3.73/5 rDev +3.6%
Served on-tap in a 10oz goblet at Beer Run (Charlottesville, VA).
A: Black with cap of off-white head with some thin lace.
S: Strong toasted malt aroma with a moderately acrid edge, soft berry alcohol, and earthy hops
T: The burnt, toasted character is even stronger in the flavor and unfortunately overwhelms any subtleties that might be lurking under the surface. The black malt is accompanied by a little bitter dark chocolate and earthy hops.
M: A nice full feel accentuated by the cask delivery. Carbonation is low (duh) and makes for a very smooth experience.
D: A liked but didn't love this brew -- the harsh burned edge seems a little out of place and over the tops and doesn't let some of the finer qualities to come through.
11-19-2010 03:48:52 | More by argock
District of Columbia
4.28/5 rDev +18.9%
I'm actually impressed they brewed this one.
Served in a snifter.
A: Black as night, with a slightly off-white head that clung to the glass and then some.
S: I got slight coffee notes, but overall this was pretty subdued on the nose. Also, there was a good bit of roast in there, much like a nice porter.
T: Lots of CO2-like qualities which I personally dig. Not chocolatey, not sweet, but very tasty. There was a bit of a "vegetable" quality in this beer. Very unique.
M: Like I stated, not sweet in the least bit. The lacing was absolutely ridiculous.
O: I was very surprised by how good this was. Kudos, Starr Hill!
11-17-2012 00:52:44 | More by Chaney
Cryptical Imperial Stout from Starr Hill Brewery
82 out of 100 based on 87 ratings.