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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

3,024 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 3,024
Reviews: 615
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 9.66%
Wants: 111
Gots: 438 | 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: 3,024 | Reviews: 615 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Trilogy31
Trilogy31

California

4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

01-21-2013 02:35:59 | More by Trilogy31
Photo of jman892
jman892

Massachusetts

4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

01-21-2013 00:30:33 | More by jman892
Photo of Lakemonster
Lakemonster

Oregon

4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

01-20-2013 23:34:49 | More by Lakemonster
Photo of Chickenhawk9932
Chickenhawk9932

Pennsylvania

4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours black as night with a coffee colored head that hangs around and leaves some nice lacing.

Smells of plumb, coffee, chocolate, and rum. Has a mild nose.

Big roasted malt chewy mouth up front explodes across the palate with coffee notes and leaves a chocolate coating. The nose was small, but the flavor is huge. The alcohol is not noticeable until it warms your belly, but the flavors are heavy with a thick and chewy mouth. Plumb and raisin, and rum come out in the back end almost hidden. One of the best imperial stouts I've had.

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2013 23:26:12 | More by Chickenhawk9932
Photo of CurtFromHershey
CurtFromHershey

Pennsylvania

4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A - pitch black with a thick, persistent tan head. Head speckled with darker brown flecks.
S - smells a bit thin. Burnt coffee and chocolate. Licorice, dark fruit. Not overwhelmingly good.
T - wow. Rich, caramel, artisan dark chocolate and cacao nibs. Coffee flavors. Much better than the nose.
M - rich and luscious. Thick. Ominous.
O - SN knocks it out of the park on this one (as usual). The smell is a bit lackluster, but everything else top notch here.

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2013 20:58:13 | More by CurtFromHershey
Photo of Gambrinus1184
Gambrinus1184

Connecticut

4.36/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served on-tap at the Dive Bar in West Haven, Conn.

A: Pours jet black with a two-finger head of espresso-colored foam which retains nicely and leaves some chunky lacing around the glass.

S: Very nice, robust, dark and roasty malt aroma with hints of anisette, charred wood and bittersweet cocoa. Some subtle fruitiness and herbal hops rise from the brew as well.

T: Rich, sweet and well-rounded malt flavor, giving off the taste of dried tobacco leaves, roasted coffee and dark chocolate. There's a slight vanilla sweetness around mid-palate which cascades into a spicy, herbal hop resin that lasts until the bittersweet and smooth, roasty finish.

M: Full-bodied, very drinkable stout with a creamy malt mouthfeel and rounded bitterness to stave off cloying sweetness while offering a smooth, robust finish.

O: SN Narwahl RIS is a very complex and enjoyable, sweet, strong stout. It packs a ton of flavor into that 10.2% ABV while not slowing you down with too hot of a hop or alcohol burn. Perfect beer to serve as dessert or to accompany a raspberry chocolate torte. I'd love to try it again, or one of it's aged varietals.

Serving type: on-tap

01-20-2013 20:43:06 | More by Gambrinus1184
Photo of woemad
woemad

Washington

4.1/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle from a 4-pk purchased at J.B.’s in Spokane for $10.99. It was literally the last they had of it, which was fitting, as I somehow missed this when it was released. The name reminds of an utterly absurd moment in the movie Elf.

Super viscous-looking when poured into a funky Sam Adams glass. From the looks of it, I could run my car off of it. Modest tan head that dropped fairly quickly into a sudsy ring, but never quite disappeared. Spotty and streaky lace.

Fairly standard aroma for the style. I get brown sugar, coffee, and chocolate. The high abv percentage is not noticeable in the smell.

A little more bitter tasting than the nose indicated, but that helps balance things nicely. In addition to the qualities I noted above, there’s also a prune-like dark fruit flavor, and a little bit of smoke. Quite dry at the swallow. Again, there’s no sign of the high alcohol content.

Fairly full-bodied, with a sticky mouthfeel.

A very tasty addition to the Imperial Stout ranks. Not quite as complex as some, but still very good. Dangerously drinkable at 10.2% alcohol - not a session beer! Glad to see SN do this style of beer.

"Goodbye Mr. Narwhal."

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2013 20:26:56 | More by woemad
Photo of pgrow
pgrow

Massachusetts

4/5  rDev -3.4%

01-20-2013 20:12:28 | More by pgrow
Photo of sweemzander
sweemzander

Illinois

3.93/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

(A)- Pours a fairly thick pitch black color. Produced a nice cap of tan froth. Good retention and lacing left behind.

(S)- A nicely deep roasted profile. Plenty of dry baked bread and raisin characters.

(T)- Similar to the smell: A good roasted malt profile. Some dry baked bread and raisin with a little bit of cocoa and bitter citrus from the hops.

(M)- A good mellow carbonation level and balance. I like the play of roasted bitterness, rich raisin, and subtle hoppy citrus at the end.

(O)- This is one solid stout. Personally, I do prefer my stouts less in the hop level, but this one has enough deep and rich flavors to mask and balance that out, and that is how the style can traditionally be. Definitely would be curious to see what some time will do to this one.

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2013 19:09:12 | More by sweemzander
Photo of cvm4
cvm4

Mississippi

4.2/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

2012 bottle

A - Appearance is stunning. Rich, black body with a tan mocha head that leaves behind a highway of lacing.

S - Roasted malts, dry bakers chocolate and vanilla.

T - Bitter dark chocolate, roasted malts and a touch of molasses to start off. Bitterness all the way through with coffee on the finish along with a lingering smokeyness.

M - Medium body that is somewhat more carbonated than other RIS I've had. Doesn't feel "thick," but somewhat creamy/chewy and airy all at the same time.

O - Well done SN, well done. Continually impressed with how this beer comes alive as it warms.

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2013 17:41:29 | More by cvm4
Photo of Blueribbon666
Blueribbon666

Ohio

4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

01-20-2013 16:03:00 | More by Blueribbon666
Photo of Beermaine
Beermaine

Maine

4/5  rDev -3.4%

01-20-2013 05:37:30 | More by Beermaine
Photo of tfsimpkins
tfsimpkins

Florida

4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

01-20-2013 04:53:32 | More by tfsimpkins
Photo of jjheinrichs
jjheinrichs

Wisconsin

4/5  rDev -3.4%

01-20-2013 03:53:36 | More by jjheinrichs
Photo of tjkramer95
tjkramer95

Ohio

4.75/5  rDev +14.7%

01-20-2013 01:19:06 | More by tjkramer95
Photo of thewimperoo
thewimperoo

Illinois

4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

01-19-2013 22:08:15 | More by thewimperoo
Photo of tut2528
tut2528

Illinois

4.43/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

thanks to Jaap for sending this one!
2012 Release

A: pours black as night, with high viscosity and it creates about 1/2 fingers worth of a rich mocha colored head formation. minimal lacing. alcohol legs are also apparent (was to be expected at 10.2%)

S: nice rich sweet body comprised of milk chocolate, figs, and a touch of vanilla with a big roasted malt backbone. biter dark chocolate is also detectable along with a fair amount of coffee grounds.

T: big roasted malts bitter dark chcolate are the main players here. but there is also a nice balance of dark fruits, sweet milk chocolate, and a slight smokiness. No alcohol is detected.

M: full bodied brew. thick viscosity coats the palate with a nice cocoa and coffee notes. there is some alcohol heat, but it honestly fits extremely nice here.

O: just a big, bold brew that has a terrific balance. and is a perfect fireside beer. One of the best offereings that I have had from Sierra Nevada.

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2013 22:00:10 | More by tut2528
Photo of hickmancase
hickmancase

California

4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

01-19-2013 21:18:07 | More by hickmancase
Photo of slimntubbs
slimntubbs

Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

01-19-2013 19:51:36 | More by slimntubbs
Photo of durwood64
durwood64

Ohio

4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

01-19-2013 13:43:15 | More by durwood64
Photo of illeagle05
illeagle05

Virginia

4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

01-19-2013 01:41:57 | More by illeagle05
Photo of DrDemento456
DrDemento456

Pennsylvania

4.03/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Finally found a bottle at Carnivores in Verona. Mixed and matched it for $2.50

A - I love the full inch of deep mocha head it almost always guarantee's a thick viscous pour. Color is as black as night and the head has both excellent lacing and stays around for a while.

S - A nice blend of citrus hops, charcoal, coffee roasts, bakers chocolate, and some alcohol. Seems very balanced and ABV smells well hidden.

T - Quite bitter and ashy as expected for such a high ABV stout. Those who do not like a sweet stout this is the beer for you the bitterness really clings to the palate. Under this I do get some espresso and coffee grounds and just a mild twang of bakers chocolate. I find it amazing I couldn't smell how much hops/roast is packed into this. Not bad.

M - Medium to thick in body, somewhat creamy and chewy. Man this is an imperial stout.

Overall its not as bad as say fresh Old Rasputin but it's still very strong with the ashy roast and hop aspect. If I was able to find older bottles of this or age them myself for a year this beer would be quite exceptional. Glad I don't love it since I passed on a second bottle.

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2013 01:32:16 | More by DrDemento456
Photo of marshmeli
marshmeli

New York

4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

01-18-2013 21:25:47 | More by marshmeli
Photo of mtbdonn
mtbdonn

Colorado

4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

01-18-2013 20:48:41 | More by mtbdonn
Photo of TheFightfan1
TheFightfan1

Pennsylvania

4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

01-18-2013 20:16:29 | More by TheFightfan1
Narwhal Imperial Stout from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 3,024 ratings.