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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.

3,118 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 3,118
Reviews: 620
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 9.66%
Wants: 131
Gots: 458 | FT: 31
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: 3,118 | Reviews: 620 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Satchboogie

New Hampshire

4/5  rDev -3.4%

12-15-2012 00:53:36 | More by Satchboogie
Photo of Jame515


4/5  rDev -3.4%

12-27-2013 14:41:27 | More by Jame515
Photo of dar482

New York

3.8/5  rDev -8.2%

This is a 2013 bottle with about 9 months on it.

The beer pours black with a light brown creamy head.

The aroma has dense roasted malt, sweet chocolate, mocha coffee, a touch of dark fruit of cherries and dried plums.

The beer has a medium plus luscious mouthfeel. However, there is still an aggressive kick of alcohol, as with the beer fresh. Lots of deeply roasted coffee and malt, bitter chocolate, with a spike of alcoholic dark fruit on the finish.

The beer is certainly helped with age, but it still very alcoholic, which detracts from the palate.

06-04-2014 02:04:03 | More by dar482
Photo of waiting4lunch


4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

02-05-2013 19:49:46 | More by waiting4lunch
Photo of Fatehunter


4.13/5  rDev -0.2%

Off the tap, pitch black with minimal head.
Smell is a strong roasted and caramel malt. Rich and nice.
Taste is bold, chocolate and coffee. Balanced though.
Thick texture with low carbonation and heavy body.
Really hits the spot for an imperial stout.

12-25-2012 01:22:10 | More by Fatehunter
Photo of WanderingFool


3.88/5  rDev -6.3%

Narwhal pours black into the glass with a big, tan head on top. The foam disappears quickly leaving only a few spots of lace on the glass.

The aroma has notes of pine, roasted malt, chocolate and toffee. The aroma improves as the beer warms.

Each sip of this medium to full bodied beer is creamy, slightly chewy with moderate carbonation. The rich flavor is nice and malty with a bitter finish. It begins with roast malt and chocolate. Some dark fruit and nuts come through in the middle. It finishes with some bitter pine flavors. Once gone the chocolate and piney bitterness lingers on the palate.

For 10% abv this is a quite drinkable beer. Well balanced with full flavors as the beer warms.

12-08-2012 22:15:40 | More by WanderingFool
Photo of SpdKilz


4/5  rDev -3.4%

12-05-2013 03:16:25 | More by SpdKilz
Photo of AlCaponeJunior


3.75/5  rDev -9.4%

OK looking, about what you'd expect from an imperial stout that doesn't stand out looks-wise.

Aroma and flavor are pretty good. Standard roasty, toasty, burnt and charcoal notes present from the dark malts. Coffee and chocolate make balanced appearances. There is a touch of dark fruits, brown sugar. There's also a bit of hoppiness that you might expect from an American stout.

The body is pretty thick, good for the style. Finish is bitter dark chocolate with slight burnt notes and a slight lingering sweetness.

Overall it's enjoyable, about standard for the modern day definition of an American imperial stout.

01-02-2014 02:32:28 | More by AlCaponeJunior
Photo of ElGallo

New Hampshire

4/5  rDev -3.4%

12-30-2012 02:05:47 | More by ElGallo
Photo of baybum


4/5  rDev -3.4%

12-20-2012 12:29:12 | More by baybum
Photo of Kurmaraja


4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

03-15-2014 04:10:54 | More by Kurmaraja
Photo of far333


4/5  rDev -3.4%

Dark brown with a low beige head that settles out quickly. Inviting aroma of cocoa and espresso, some raisin. Rich flavors upfront, dark chocolate, espresso, root beer, molasses, smoke and leather, some rough-edged roasty malt, sharp bitterness, interesting mix of flavors. Full mouthfeel, but slightly tannic and warming. Good beer.

03-06-2013 01:03:29 | More by far333
Photo of JoEBoBpr


4.15/5  rDev +0.2%

Poured into a tulip glass form a 12oz bottle.

Pours a pitch black slightly oily liquid. Some dark mahogany and caramel edges are present. There is a nice light tan 0.5 inch head that is formed. It recedes fairly quickly down to a thin film.

Aroma starts with roast and dark malts. Slightly smokey with some coffee notes. There is also some nice bitter chocolate in the nose. There are some slight grassy aroma in the nose as well that mix in with the roasted, dark and coffee notes. Pretty nice aroma.

Flavor starts off with dark chocolate notes. Some sweetness with nice dark cocoa bitterness. Then there is the roast that comes in. Coffee and espresso notes with some slight sweet milk chocolate notes present. There is definitely some nice grassy hop notes in the middle and the back end of this brew. Very well blended with the roast and stout notes. Quite the roasty brew with nice dark cocoa notes to finish it off. Mouthfeel is nice and slick. Creamy with good lively carbonation as well.

Pretty impressive brew by Sierra Nevada. Rich and creamy with some nice roasty coffee notes. Good RIS.

12-11-2012 03:29:52 | More by JoEBoBpr
Photo of charlzm


3.93/5  rDev -5.1%

Consumed January 6th, 2012 from a Ladyface Ale Companie tulip.

Pouring somewhat vigorously, this beer gives up a one finger dark tan head that disappears almost immediately. 99% opaque black with a tiny hint of brown.

Aroma is graham crackers and vanilla.

Flavor is deeply roasted dark malts providing chocolate and woody notes. Some alcohol presence. Moderate bitterness on finish. Not terribly complex.

Mouthfeel is silky smoove and a little thick.

This is a quality RIS. Sierra Nevada seems to have staked out Old Rasputin's territory and made a credible play for it.

01-07-2013 03:40:49 | More by charlzm
Photo of markgugs

New Jersey

4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

04-20-2014 17:30:02 | More by markgugs
Photo of jsprain1


4.05/5  rDev -2.2%

A- Pours deep dark black. Head is one finger thick, lasts pretty well, I suppose. Good lacing, however.
S- Very nice smell. Coffee, espresso, dark chocolate, and a good bit of dark caramel. Hits all the notes a good RIS should.
T- A bit too much sweet caramel and not enough roasted flavors. Caramel is prevalent throughout. Coffee and chocolate are there, just not as strong as I would like.
M- A bit light, but nice smooth carbonation.
O- A decent to good imperial stout. I always like SN offerings and even if this isn't one of the top examples.

11-27-2012 04:05:23 | More by jsprain1
Photo of Onenote81

North Carolina

4.38/5  rDev +5.8%

Grabbed a 4-pack of this when it first came out. Saved the final bottle for a review. 12oz bottle poured into a snifter.

Pours a jet black. No light penetrates this one. Small tan head. Nose is rich with booze, chocolate, roasted coffee, grape, vanilla. Hints of woodsy aromas on the finish.

Body is decadent and full. Rich velvety feel with a touch of carbonation on the back end. A nice malty backbone, with vanilla, chocolate syrup, a little booze, black licorice, dark fruits.

This one was rich and tasty. The alcohol snuck up on me at the tail end, but this one was one I enjoyed through and through. I hope to see this around often, as I would like to have stock of this one at all times.

01-15-2013 13:08:37 | More by Onenote81
Photo of Herky21


4/5  rDev -3.4%

09-29-2013 15:16:10 | More by Herky21
Photo of dfhhead25


4/5  rDev -3.4%

08-27-2013 18:21:17 | More by dfhhead25
Photo of AndrewMichael


4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

12-25-2013 21:06:21 | More by AndrewMichael
Photo of RoryOMoore

New Jersey

4.75/5  rDev +14.7%

01-05-2013 03:30:48 | More by RoryOMoore
Photo of MattyG85


4.33/5  rDev +4.6%

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Surly Darkness chalice glass. 2012 bottle

Appearance: Pours a dark oily black with a moderate amount of bubbles. About two fingers of creamy tan head that fade into a thin layer. Leaves a decent amount of lacing around the glass.

Smell: A roasty and fairly sweet aroma. Dark roasted malts with hints of cocoa, dark bread, coffee, and cookie dough along with some caramel and toffee. A fair amount of molasses. Some subtle smoke. Hop presence is very subtle but there is a light earthy and piney scent. Also some subtle dark fruits with hints of cherry, raisin, and plum. Pretty decent smell.

Taste: Like the aroma hints, a dark, roasty, and sweet stout taste. Dark roasted malts with a taste of cocoa, toasted bread, coffee, and dough. Some burnt caramel and toffee along with some molasses sweetness. Subtle anise and some smoke that lingers through the finish. Undertones of dark fruits including cherry, prune, and raisin. Light earthy hops and resin round it out. A pretty good taste.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Creamy, slick, and somewhat syrupy. Alcohol is hidden well.

Overall: A very good take on the Russian Imperial Stout. Big, roasty, and sweet while avoiding becoming cloying. Very solid.

11-09-2012 07:25:30 | More by MattyG85
Photo of bmwats


3.85/5  rDev -7%

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a standard pint.

A: Black. Pours about a finger and a half, foamy, brown head. Disintegrates slowly. Eventually settles to a thick blanket with a foamy buildup around the sides of the glass. Sporadic lacing.

S: Earthy malt tone, dark chocolate, with a little black licorice.

T: Unsweetened dark chocolate, lots of licorice, pecan shells.

M: Thick, hearty, and syrupy. Slight bitterness lingers throughout.

D: Sip and enjoy.

Atmosphere is solid. Dark, intimidating appearance, nice head, and fair lacing. Nose is basic and characteristic dark chocolate and licorice. Tastes like is smells.... bitter chocolate and licorice. Overall, this is a pretty good quaff.

12-22-2012 03:26:31 | More by bmwats
Photo of Lukass


4.75/5  rDev +14.7%

01-06-2013 14:19:20 | More by Lukass
Photo of atlbravsrno1


4/5  rDev -3.4%

08-04-2014 16:07:29 | More by atlbravsrno1
Narwhal Imperial Stout from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 3,118 ratings.