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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.

3,027 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 3,027
Reviews: 616
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 9.66%
Wants: 111
Gots: 440 | FT: 28
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: 3,027 | Reviews: 616 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JayQue


4.06/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sierra Nevada is the Toyota of beers. Not always the cutting edge innovator, but consistently excellent with every offering. Narwhal pours a dense black color with a big dark tan head (on a hard pour). Good head retention, good lacing. Smell is about average for a big stout...Chocolate and rich malts. Taste is very good. A hint of alcohol while the beer was cold. As it warmed up, no harshness at all. About as smooth as an Oatmeal Stout, despite the big abv. Main flavors are rich malts and some chocolate. Expertly blended and very flavorful.

Mouthfeel is as smooth and rich as you could expect at this abv. Overall an excellent RIS. Well work a try.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2013 20:38:20 | More by JayQue
Photo of CoryR


4/5  rDev -3.4%

10-22-2012 03:50:20 | More by CoryR
Photo of philbe311


3.89/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - One finger's worth of slightly active crisp two toned (part khaki / part medium brown) swirled head... Modest at best retention yields a splotchy veil of lacing in the center of the glass surrounded by a moderate to thick collar... The color isn't quite black, but rather a deep dark sweet caramel that lets the slightest bit of light leak in around the edges... A few small streaks of carbonation can be seen towards the top of the glass... A good bit of lacing clings to the sides of the glass...

S - Sweet to start... Caramel... Milk chocolate... Toffee... Brown sugar... Dark molasses... A slight hint of dark fruits... A bit of nuttiness as well...

T - A bit of the sweetness fades on the palate and is replaced by a brisk roasted malt component.... The sweet and roasty place nice together throughout... Good balance... Nice complexity with each sip... A slight bit of coffee emerges on the finish...

M - Full bodied, but not harsh... Smooth and sleek... Very limited carbonation... Goes down very easily sip after sip...

D - This is a very nice yet unremarkable Russian Imperial Stout... Tasty but a bit understated for the power and umph I typically expect for the style which isn't necessarily a bad thing... Goes down easily and is surprisingly drinkable given the 10+% ABV... I would gladly drink again...

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2013 03:57:10 | More by philbe311
Photo of jsh420


4/5  rDev -3.4%

03-09-2014 03:44:03 | More by jsh420
Photo of bumchilly25

British Columbia (Canada)

3.75/5  rDev -9.4%

03-13-2014 05:24:42 | More by bumchilly25
Photo of TX-Badger


4/5  rDev -3.4%

01-10-2013 02:33:18 | More by TX-Badger
Photo of buschbeer


4.06/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

12 FL. OZ. bottle
Served in a snifter

A - This beer is pitch black. It is topped with a couple inches of mocha head. The is some lacing down the sides of the glass.

S - The aroma consists of anise, dark chocolate, a little alcohol, and some dark fruit.

T - Anise seems to be the main driver in the taste. I pick up a little dark chocolate and black coffee. It has a slightly bitter finish with alcohol in the aftertaste.

M - This beer is about as thick as there is.

O - I love the mouthfeel of this beer. The anise flavor isn't my favorite, but it isn't overpowering. It seemed to have a pronounced hop presence on tap which is not present in this bottle.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2012 16:58:18 | More by buschbeer
Photo of mdagnew

United Kingdom (Northern Ireland)

4.44/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle bought from Drinkstore, Dublin

Poured pitch black with no hint of colour even when held up to the light. Dirty nut brown head poured big thick and foamy then faded slowly to decent covering... some decent lines of lacing...

Aroma - Rich roasted and charred dark chocolate maltiness, sweet coffee, some brown sugar sweetness, some sooty like smokiness, some dark fruits (blackcurrents, dates), pine and citric hop notes, toasted (maybe charred ?) fruit loaf, some earthiness, milky notes...

Taste - Dark chocolate, lots of roasted / charred bready malts, barely any alcohol noticeable, treacle sweetness, dark spicy fruits (raisins, date,some figs, red grape), piney and grassy hop bitterness, citrus hints, traces of piney resin, light liquorice, light sourness...

Feel - Fairly smooth and creamy with a little sharpness coming through... fairly full bodied... for a 10% brew this is dangerously drinkable..

Overall - A world class Impy stout - highly recommended...

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2013 16:50:44 | More by mdagnew
Photo of Durandal_777


5/5  rDev +20.8%

05-22-2014 02:38:46 | More by Durandal_777
Photo of Stinger80OH


4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

03-11-2013 18:19:08 | More by Stinger80OH
Photo of Kopfschuss


4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

10-31-2012 03:27:04 | More by Kopfschuss
Photo of smithj4

New York

4/5  rDev -3.4%

12-24-2013 22:57:04 | More by smithj4
Photo of inlimbo77


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

8oz taster pour
Mini pint glass
Two Stones Pub, Newark, DE

A: This pours out a completely dark black color. No light getting through. Thin layer of tan head that hangs around for a while. Some lacing bits. Getting some alcohol feet, but harder to see on this little pint glass.

S: Sweet and Dark chocolate on the nose. Some nice roasted malts and coffee. Very pleasant stout character.

T: Big roast character. Dark chocolate. Creamy flavors.

M: Full bodied. Nice and creamy/oily mouthfeel. Easy to drink.

Serving type: on-tap

12-27-2012 14:20:59 | More by inlimbo77
Photo of GreesyFizeek

New York

4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

03-07-2013 00:34:57 | More by GreesyFizeek
Photo of akang


4/5  rDev -3.4%

08-14-2013 05:44:44 | More by akang
Photo of hollywood_15063


3.75/5  rDev -9.4%

12-29-2013 04:33:58 | More by hollywood_15063
Photo of HardTarget


4.34/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

Appearance: Black as night, only the thinnest of ruby edges. Holds a tan thin cover, not much lace.

Smell: Roasted malt, burnt sugar vapor is alcoholic and inviting. A rich tone with some supportive but mild hop notes.

Taste: Heavy malt has a toffee sweetness to it that is smooth and silky. Slight lactic twang of a mild stout, slippery feel of an oatmeal stout, full volume of an Imperial Stout. Somewhere down the British spectrum, definitely not an AMERICAN HOP STOUT, this is much more refined, restrained, civilized.

Mouthfeel: Fizzy milk shake. Great combination of heavy body and lively carbonation that helps keep the whole package together. Full chew, slick oil takes a while to soak in.

Overall: Wow. Serious yum. I'll be seeking more. It's a monster with a friendly face. You note alcohol, but it doesn't taste like the 10% it's swinging. A nice long evening sipper.

Serving type: bottle

11-16-2013 00:50:43 | More by HardTarget
Photo of oglmcdgl


4/5  rDev -3.4%

02-26-2013 06:31:40 | More by oglmcdgl
Photo of Adamostella


3.25/5  rDev -21.5%

10-25-2013 21:51:56 | More by Adamostella
Photo of DaPan

Ontario (Canada)

4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

03-11-2013 20:53:04 | More by DaPan
Photo of atone315


4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

10-29-2012 22:01:34 | More by atone315
Photo of whatname


4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

02-10-2013 03:57:49 | More by whatname
Photo of lupercmda

North Carolina

4.75/5  rDev +14.7%

11-19-2012 03:36:15 | More by lupercmda
Photo of Burt

Rhode Island

3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

03-09-2013 21:11:12 | More by Burt
Photo of zonker17


4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

11-07-2013 02:55:19 | More by zonker17
Narwhal Imperial Stout from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 3,027 ratings.