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Narwhal Imperial Stout - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Narwhal Imperial StoutNarwhal Imperial Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

3,063 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 3,063
Reviews: 616
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 9.66%
Wants: 115
Gots: 444 | FT: 29
Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: JohnGalt1 on 10-14-2012)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,063 | Reviews: 616 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jtierney89
jtierney89

New Jersey

3.3/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Incredibly deep brown color, almost black, from what i can tell good clarity and about two fingers of mocha colored head. Charcoal heavily roasted grains, bit of asphalt, mocha and dark cocoa.

Not as heavily bodied as I thought it would be but a pretty good beer. I expected a bit more from sierra, but it's a pretty standard imp stout. Faintly creamy, bitter black chocolate, dark roast coffee, herbal hop, low astringency, bitter malts and bitter hops finishes dry. Overall good, clean tasting, on the heavier side of medium bodied, lingering burnt coffee, black chocolate and earthy hop flavors. A touch soapy and minty.

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2013 19:09:50 | More by jtierney89
Photo of ccrida
ccrida

Oregon

3.31/5  rDev -20%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Appearance is thick black with a small, dark tan/light brown head, quickly dissipating, no lace.

Smell is soft, sweet malt sugars. Robust alcoholic character.

Taste is robust and rich. Sugary, caramel, sweet alcohol. A little raisiny. Not a lot of depth here, the 10.2 is pretty bruising.

Mouthfeel is dry and thick.

Drinkability is ok, this is a big, brash, old school RIS. I like the fact that it's all malt and not hoppy, but it's too hot.

Serving type: bottle

08-29-2013 00:59:19 | More by ccrida
Photo of BEERZILLA
BEERZILLA

Texas

3.35/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

It pours a jet black color with a nice head that retains decent.stouts are hard to rate in appearance To me they are black and not much else.

The smell is good,you get coffee in the front then the alcohol just ruins it in the back end,maybe a little coco back there too.

The taste is not bad just the booze overpowers it,after a few drinks that's pretty much all you taste.

The mouthfeel is a little thin IMO.

Overall this is not a great imperial stout,too much booze taste.if Sierra Nevada can hide the abv better it would improve this one drastically

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2013 03:56:47 | More by BEERZILLA
Photo of fourstringer
fourstringer

Maryland

3.4/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Samuel Smith pint glass. Moderately aggressive hand. Stamp on the bottle reads: 3221220:57. Labeled as 2013.

A: Pours a dark ruby, but is opaque blackness in the glass. 1/2 finger caramel head. Fair retention. Minimal lacing. Impressive body, but head is lacking.

S: Roasted malt. Coffee. Faint dark fruit. Alcohol. A bit subdued overall.

T: Tangy, roasted malt semi-sweetness into a mostly dry, chocolatey finish. Dark roast coffee. Black licorice. Definite alcohol presence. There is a medicinal element that develops and detracts.

M: Moderate to full bodied with a moderate carbonation. No complaints here.

O: Not terrible, but this struck me as a bit harsh and unrefined. Pretty boozy. Kinda reminded me of Nyquil. The green kind. Color me disappointed.

Prost!

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2013 04:07:42 | More by fourstringer
Photo of Hoptometrist
Hoptometrist

Ohio

3.4/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from the bottle into a globed glass

A- Poured a vicious vlack with a small dark mocha colored head that dissipated quickly. Some minimal splashy lace was left.

S- Big licorice, toasted coconut, and big whiskey notes. Very strong aroma with lots of booze on it

T- Follows the aroma very closely. Huge licorice notes, big whiskey notes, some toasted coconut, notes and some roastiness. Kind of an odd sour twang on the finish. Incredibly bitter stout, by far the most bitter stout I have ever had.

M Pretty thick mouthfeel, very creamy and smooth, almost velvety, big warming from the alcohol, and some alcohol burn

O- Great mouthfeel, but not one of my favorite imperial stouts. Pretty boozy and the sour finish is odd.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2013 02:43:11 | More by Hoptometrist
Photo of AilidoBrew
AilidoBrew


3.48/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured into a Chouffe 250mL tulip

A: beautiful opaque with a thick head that dissipates at an average rate and leaves a heavy ringed lacing

S: not much of a smell considering the style; I could see myself mistaking the beer style (for an English brown) if I judged it by smell alone

T: very roasty; dark coffee mainly but followed by unsweetened cocoa: the bottle nails it by calling it "baker's cocoa and dark roasted coffee" but I would superimpose one for the other

M: the alcohol cuts through the thickness and gives it a lighter perceived body; silky and thick but with a lighter finish

O: a real nice R. I. Stout. Silky and smooth with a mellow alcohol burn masked by layers of roast. Hides it's true strength well. Lightens it's body by it's high octane nature while simultaneously hiding said nature in waves of roast. Let it warm some to bring out more depth and dark chocolate notes.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2012 16:37:16 | More by AilidoBrew
Photo of Jeffo
Jeffo

Netherlands

3.48/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A case of this actually made it to Amsterdam. Picked it up at De Bierkoning.

From a bottle into a snifter
Vintage: 2013

APPEARANCE: A dark brown, opaque pour yields a three finger, medium looking, creamy, tan head with excellent retention. Black body with no carbonation evident. Head fades to a full wisp and sticks to the sides of the glass. A faint wisp and ring remain until the end leaving some nice lacing down the glass. Pretty good looking stout. Needs to be even blacker for top marks.

SMELL: Dark baker's chocolate, light coffee, cream, some caramel notes and roasted aromas on the nose. Tobacco in there, as well as some leather too. Could be bolder, but complex and interesting enough.

TASTE: Baker's chocolate again, caramel and leather up front, then a big, roasted coffee finish with some burnt and charred malts at the swallow. Bolder and lingering finish of roasted coffee bitterness, burnt and charred malts, leather, tobacco, and some light vanilla cream. Quite burnt and roasted, with lots of other complex flavors as well.

PALATE: Medium body and medium levels of carbonation. A little light on the palate and too prickly for the style, but goes down okay and finishes somewhat mouth-coating. A bit of a burn at the swallow and a touch of heat lingers.

OVERALL: Pretty good stuff. Lots of burnt and charred notes with tobacco definitely give it a European tough. If you like this one, you'll probably like the stuff coming out of De Molen in Holland and various Danish breweries that deserve some praise. The feel is slightly lighter on this, which holds it back a bit. Fill that out and it would support the flavors that much more. Still, this is a solid effort worth checking out if you get the chance. If it were reasonably priced, I'd go back for seconds.

Serving type: bottle

04-02-2014 19:21:18 | More by Jeffo
Photo of Mdog
Mdog

Minnesota

3.48/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pitch black with a huge head. Looks great.

Smell: Not much. Mild chocolate shows up eventually.

Taste: Dark chocolate builds in intensity through the glass. Dark fruits hang in the background. Gives a mild dark chocolate bitterness throughout.

Overall: Started out looking like a dream, but didn't deliver excellence in the aroma or taste. Some might be my personal preference in that I like imperial stouts to be a little sweeter than this, but it still didn't give a particularly memorable experience. Kind of middle of the road, not too sweet, not too hoppy.

Serving type: bottle

11-17-2012 22:42:46 | More by Mdog
Photo of budgood1
budgood1

Minnesota

3.49/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 3.5

pours out an opaque onyx black colour. large, thick and frothy light brown coloured head that has a great deal of creamy staying power. about perfect. the nose on this big stout is a bit non-descript...some cocoa and nougat with some NW hopping. taste profile is a straight up combination of creamy sweetened dark chocolate and yeast infused dark roasted malts. none too complex in the malt/yeast interaction, so no real layers of flavours... just char, java and a hint of sour. this imperial stout has a beefy hop attribute to it, enough that the pine and pith flavours are able to fight their way through the dark cauldron and murky depths of black malt madness. a nice, healthy back end bitterness is also obviously detectable...and it all lingers for a blistering finish. the body on this stout is beefy and sturdy, no detractions there. mouthfeel is silky smooth, almost too smooth for an imperial stout of this magnitude. and that leads into the drinkability factor, which is way to easy for an imperial stout, making it dangerously delectable.

overall, i was a bit underwhelmed in the grand scheme of things when sampling this. perhaps a bit of age would benefit this? or maybe i'm just let down with the overall nose and flavour profile. the interaction between malt and yeast leaves me wanting despite the bitter hop blast, which i was expecting. an egnigma...nonetheless, it's a tasty treat that has potential in the cellar.

Serving type: bottle

03-18-2013 23:33:39 | More by budgood1
Photo of Beerswag
Beerswag

California

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

10-10-2013 04:23:52 | More by Beerswag
Photo of ste5venla
ste5venla

California

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

02-05-2014 20:34:10 | More by ste5venla
Photo of KG12
KG12


3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

07-11-2014 20:34:13 | More by KG12
Photo of Spartan13
Spartan13

Michigan

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

09-03-2013 06:50:27 | More by Spartan13
Photo of Dracarys
Dracarys

Alabama

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

06-30-2013 16:37:26 | More by Dracarys
Photo of JSBILK
JSBILK

Massachusetts

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

03-02-2014 20:08:46 | More by JSBILK
Photo of jessicapreuss
jessicapreuss

Brazil

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

11-23-2012 21:26:29 | More by jessicapreuss
Photo of dcisco44
dcisco44

Massachusetts

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

12-13-2013 00:13:18 | More by dcisco44
Photo of DerrickW
DerrickW

Georgia

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

11-03-2013 16:48:20 | More by DerrickW
Photo of Blanco
Blanco

Pennsylvania

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

02-19-2013 04:09:44 | More by Blanco
Photo of ninaturner
ninaturner

Florida

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

01-25-2014 19:44:30 | More by ninaturner
Photo of gratefuld
gratefuld

Indiana

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

11-17-2012 00:24:44 | More by gratefuld
Photo of blastoderm55
blastoderm55

Texas

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

12-16-2013 03:14:23 | More by blastoderm55
Photo of DarthKostrizer
DarthKostrizer

California

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

11-23-2012 02:53:39 | More by DarthKostrizer
Photo of ackeeper
ackeeper

Illinois

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

05-31-2013 05:31:52 | More by ackeeper
Photo of jhillwastaken
jhillwastaken

Illinois

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

01-08-2013 17:04:31 | More by jhillwastaken
Narwhal Imperial Stout from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 3,063 ratings.