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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

3,143 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 3,143
Reviews: 621
rAvg: 4.14
pDev: 9.66%
Wants: 135
Gots: 473 | FT: 32
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: 3,143 | Reviews: 621 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Dirty25
Dirty25

Germany

2.75/5  rDev -33.6%

01-17-2013 12:55:57 | More by Dirty25
Photo of mquartuccio87
mquartuccio87

New York

2.75/5  rDev -33.6%

03-02-2014 21:36:49 | More by mquartuccio87
Photo of heytomcat
heytomcat

Minnesota

2.75/5  rDev -33.6%

08-28-2013 02:37:58 | More by heytomcat
Photo of od_sf
od_sf

California

2.75/5  rDev -33.6%

11-10-2013 01:43:14 | More by od_sf
Photo of MonkeyStain
MonkeyStain

Florida

2.75/5  rDev -33.6%

05-13-2014 03:17:42 | More by MonkeyStain
Photo of scar
scar

New Jersey

2.91/5  rDev -29.7%

What I was looking forward to was a larger version of their stout that was made with Black Malt/ no Rbarley and was bottle conditioned. Unfortunately their stout and this imperial stout are no longer bottle conditioned and they have changed the recipes.

I was confused by this beer, I really didn't know what it was trying to accomplish other than strength and drink ability. Sadly, there are many big stouts far better than this one and I expected more from the great American institution.

Because of my disappointment pls refer to my numerical ratings rather than a written breakdown of this beer. I will leave you with this thought. Sierra Nevada has gotten larger and as a result only bottle conditions the pale ale and a few seasonals. However, this conditioning in the bottle is what made their products really pop and highlighted the craftsmanship and quality. Simply put, this company's beers cease to be interesting since they have stopped bottle conditioning.

09-15-2013 13:57:09 | More by scar
Photo of DRyan
DRyan

Texas

2.93/5  rDev -29.2%

2012 Narwhal poured in a Guiness pint glass

A: Looks like you average Imperial Stout, or regular stout really. Has a nice dark head that receded slowly and left some lacing on the glass, but not really as much as I would expect from a IS
S: There's something about the scent I really don't get along with. It's got the roasty heavy malty smells I expect from an IS, but there's something else there I really can't put my finger on that is really not working for me.
T: It's a bit different, maybe more aggressively hopped than your average stout. According to SN, "Featuring incredible depth of malt flavor, rich with notes of espresso, baker’s cocoa, roasted grain and a light hint of smoke," but all I really got was the roasted grain and maybe a bit of a hint of coffee, as well as the hop bitterness
M: A bit thin for a stout really, but not bad
D: This is not a bad beer, but not a great one either. For the price, and with the other two entries in the "High Gravity" series from SN that I really like a lot, I expected a lot more from it.

01-10-2013 01:06:32 | More by DRyan
Photo of zeledonia
zeledonia

Minnesota

2.95/5  rDev -28.7%

Pours black in the glass, light coming through coffee brown at the edges. Two fingers of mocha brown head, good retention and nice lacing. Solid.

Smell is faint for an imperial stout. Light cocoa makes up the most of it. A little milky. Not bad, but I want more potency.

Taste starts out roasty, and quickly takes a downturn. I initially thought it was chili pepper spice, but now it's coming through as an off, bitter, cardboard-paper-glue sludge. This is truly foul. I'll drink enough to finish my review, but no more. So I drank a little more, and a strange thing happened. It warmed up, that nastiness faded, and it became, well, consumable. And then it warmed up a bit more, and it became passable. Still not something I'd call good, but no longer something I'd call bad.

Mouthfeel is fine. At least, what I can perceive through the nastiness is fine. Heavy body, medium carbonation, lasting finish.

This beer is weird. Based on comparisons to other reviews, I wonder if I got a bad bottle. Or maybe my sense of taste is just that different. As it warmed up, the bad flavors faded, and it became, well, okay.

12-18-2012 03:37:33 | More by zeledonia
Photo of jbertsch
jbertsch

Massachusetts

2.96/5  rDev -28.5%

6 months old.

Poured into a snifter.

Appearance is jet black. Head was fizzy and off-white, almost tan. Head unfortunately fizzled away fast.

Aroma gives off a mixed sense of char, bonfire, salty brine, booze, and some general roastiness.

Its flavor is not big on chocolate or coffee as one might look for. It's a bit nondescript. Some earthiness and a little wood is noticeable. Salty brine again is noticeable. Some alcohol soaked bittersweet chocolate makes a quick appearance on the finish. The flavor is a little syrupy.

Mouthfeel is oily and slick... it's a little detracting from the overall enjoyment.

Overall, I wouldn't buy this again. It's exemplary of the mediocre rut SN's beers can sometimes fall into. They're capable of better in my eyes. In my needs for an imperial stout, there's no need for me to return to this one. However, it's not terrible and what will save it are the leagues of SN fans.

03-18-2013 00:38:27 | More by jbertsch
Photo of 57md
57md

Pennsylvania

2.98/5  rDev -28%

Appearance is a dark brown to black with a finger of head that quickly dissipated. The nose has distinctly cidery notes. The taste of straight-up alcohol overwhelms everything else in the flavor profile. The finish is astringent.

This is an offering that is way out of balance and a big disappointment considering I generally have a profound affection for SN beers.

08-30-2013 04:12:48 | More by 57md
Photo of mdhobbs
mdhobbs

Ohio

2.99/5  rDev -27.8%

Just about everything I try from Sierra Nevada has the same ale taste and this Imperial Stout was no different. The stout pour nice and dark with a head that reminds me of chocolate but the pour seemed a little thin. The aroma is ale and the taste had the same bite to it. Maybe too much carbonation as well. I started the the beer being served cold and as it warmed, the taste seemed to improve a little but not to the extent that I try again.

12-12-2013 21:56:18 | More by mdhobbs
Photo of beertunes
beertunes

Washington

2.99/5  rDev -27.8%

This bottle's been kicking around the back of the fridge since I got it, at the release time. About time to hit it. Poured into 10oz goblet. Poured a solid black color, as expected, with less than 1/4 inch of brown head that quickly dissipated to a thin ring, that left surprisingly good lacing.

The aroma was average for the style, perhaps even a bit too roast forward. The flavors were the same mostly bitter roast and alcohol, and the beer was sharp, in a harsh way, not a crisp way. The alcohol wasn't the least bit hidden, and the finish was very harsh.

That overall harshness hurt drinkability a great deal. I had a tough time finishing my 12oz. Overall, while a decent brew, this isn't the Old Rasputin killer SN has seemed to position it as. I won't be having it again, I'll just buy a 4pack of the smooth, even, nearly flawless Raspy.

03-03-2013 23:03:05 | More by beertunes
Photo of SmellsofMahagony
SmellsofMahagony

Texas

3/5  rDev -27.5%

03-28-2013 03:06:17 | More by SmellsofMahagony
Photo of ohiobeer29
ohiobeer29

Ohio

3/5  rDev -27.5%

09-24-2013 05:55:06 | More by ohiobeer29
Photo of DarkLordPsycho
DarkLordPsycho

Pennsylvania

3/5  rDev -27.5%

02-20-2013 04:57:27 | More by DarkLordPsycho
Photo of Tawny
Tawny

Michigan

3/5  rDev -27.5%

12-16-2012 16:13:52 | More by Tawny
Photo of Dave_Treat
Dave_Treat

Virginia

3/5  rDev -27.5%

02-24-2013 07:57:24 | More by Dave_Treat
Photo of HavasuDG
HavasuDG

Arizona

3/5  rDev -27.5%

12-02-2012 21:46:45 | More by HavasuDG
Photo of bastu
bastu

Tennessee

3/5  rDev -27.5%

12-03-2012 18:13:01 | More by bastu
Photo of brywhite
brywhite

California

3/5  rDev -27.5%

08-31-2013 23:41:56 | More by brywhite
Photo of johnmac
johnmac

Idaho

3/5  rDev -27.5%

01-01-2014 04:25:43 | More by johnmac
Photo of Scamboogery
Scamboogery

Texas

3/5  rDev -27.5%

01-03-2013 05:28:34 | More by Scamboogery
Photo of jesus808
jesus808

California

3/5  rDev -27.5%

10-27-2013 07:07:25 | More by jesus808
Photo of Phil_H
Phil_H

Wisconsin

3/5  rDev -27.5%

11-30-2013 20:28:52 | More by Phil_H
Photo of Chokobo
Chokobo

Wisconsin

3/5  rDev -27.5%

11-10-2012 04:02:33 | More by Chokobo
Narwhal Imperial Stout from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 3,143 ratings.