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Imperiale High Gravity Stout - Ninkasi Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Imperiale High Gravity StoutImperiale High Gravity Stout

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BA SCORE
84
good

209 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 209
Reviews: 75
rAvg: 3.72
pDev: 13.17%
Wants: 6
Gots: 30 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Ninkasi Brewing Company visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  9.10% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: flexabull on 11-05-2011

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 209 | Reviews: 75
Photo of Eamonn-Cummings3
4.29/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Black with brown highlights. Little head that dissipates quickly. Caramel malt smells.
Taste is rich and roasty bitter. Tastes like hops and amazing coffee.
No taste of the 9% alcohol. Delicious

Photo of Champ82
4.27/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Well balanced stout. 9.1% abv with a smooth rich finish

Photo of ryannosaurus
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance is a black lump of coal

Aroma is lightly malty with a hint of coffee

Taste is this brews long suit: bitter and twisted with lurking deep molasses sweetness. Coffee, chocolate, malt, and charcoal in abundance. Hints of vanilla, anise and dark fruits in the background

Mouthfeel is sprightly for such a big beer with limited carbonation.

Overall I am amazed I rarely see reviews or mentions of this beer, and doubly amazed I got it on the cheap ($5.50/22oz). Crazy drinkable for a big beer, so save this for the weekends.

Photo of demon
3.65/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Strong alcohol taste. Not very bitter, though very sweet. Nicely roasty, though missing some of the complexity I was looking for. Nice and sticky-sweet mouthfeel. Leaves a kind of lingering, lightly stinging malty characteristic in a way that I didn't particularly desire.

Good, worth a try if you are into imperial stouts, but I'd personally pass on this a second time around.

Photo of Lard_City
3.94/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bread dough nose. Slightly sweet, a little spicy, malty and a touch of hop bitterness. Nice.

Photo of metter98
3.71/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a quarter finger high tan head that died down leaving a thin layer of bubbles on the surface, a thin collar around the edge, and some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of black licorice are present in the nose along with hints of dark fruits.
T: The taste has flavors of dark malts with a bit of roast and strong notes of dark fruits and black licorice. A light to moderate amount of bitterness is present. The roasted malts are a little stronger in the finish. The roast becomes stronger as the beer warms up.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation, but seems to be lighter in body considering you would expect from the alcohol content.
O: This beer seems to be oddly fruity for a stout, but is interesting and hides its alcohol very well.

Serving type: bottle

Photo of OrestesMethuon
3.88/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A boozy nose, minimal froth, a deep, essentially-opaque brown-black body, and a beautiful label featuring prismatic Byzantine cathedral-domes all conspire to announce this special release as a decidedly imperious stout. Yet it's also not especially thick, possessing a smooth, medium-heft consistency, and that's twinned with a bilious, biting hopping that refuses to let the sweetness or burned-sugar smokiness overwhelm or achieve full assertiveness. Instead, Ninkasi has crafted a big stout that's as balanced as it is bold, boasting bumped-up IBU (reported at 70) and a clean mix of roasted flavors—mostly smoked ash and nearly-blackened caramel—as well as variegated hop notes, which are both decidedly bitter and tart in that grassy, hop-acerbic sense. All in all, a nice, slightly unique, mostly pleasing stout.

Photo of Harvest06
3.63/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Fresh this is not a stout I care for. Too hot and hoppy.

I tried one cellar-ed 1 year and it has improved but now had a sweet finish that the hops had hidden when fresh.

Photo of Jermaine44
3.95/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Overall a well made stout. Smells sweet like Carmel, vanilla.. Taste is roast up front followed by sweetness from the malt finished with a bitterness to balance the beer. Medium mouthfeel just the way I like my beers

Photo of StoneTSR
3.98/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

APPEARANCE: Impressive head. It lingers for a good 3-4 minutes after the beer is poured as a half-inch, light brown, foamy top. Underneath is a pretty much, pitch black beer. Shining an iPhone light through it produces nothing more than a faint, red spot, shining through from the other side of the glass. The lacing is pretty strong for a big beer like this, covering a good 70% of the back side of the glass.

SMELL: Aroma is lighter than I would expect from a beer like this, but roasted malts lead the way. Dark chocolate with a touch of caramel and a little oak lie behind the roast.

TASTE: That roasted malt flavor leads the way, but it is mild and pleasant. Vanilla and dark chocolate help to round it out along with hints of dark fruit.

MOUTHFEEL: Very smooth and velvety, silky smooth. This beer should be very full-bodied, instead its medium to full…much lighter than expected and very easy to drink.

OVERALL: Excellent Imperial Stout. Just a well done beer that I’ll drink any time its available.

Photo of meno19
3.45/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great value for the price

Photo of prock180
3.97/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Average take on the style. I kept wanting a little more to come out in this but it didn't. Good imp stout with nice chocolate flavor. I want more body and coffee with an imperial stout.

Photo of biboergosum
3.75/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle. I love how this is called "High Gravity" here, like anyone would look at a north of a 9% ABV brew any other way.

This beer pours a solid, light diffusing black, with the barest of basal cola edges, and three fingers of puffy, frothy, and rocky Dockers tan head, which leaves some decent pockmarked inner city wall lace around the glass as it gently subsides.

It smells of roasted, kind of meaty caramel malt, bittersweet chocolate, a touch of funky yeast, vanilla-tinged brown sugar, very meek and muddled dark fruit notes, and earthy, leafy, and fairly herbal hops. The taste is more of the same - bready, lightly toasted caramel malt, meaty wet ash, dark cocoa beans, still apparent phenolic yeast, somewhat acrid black orchard fruit, some real (read: boozy) vanilla, bitter coffee grounds, and more leafy, weedy, and earthy hops.

The carbonation is fairly low, but supportive enough in its plain fizziness, the body a strong medium-full weight, and generally smooth, the alcohol slowly chipping away, Chinese water torture style. It finishes on the sweet side, the caramel malt, chocolate, and booze lording it over the still relevant hops.

Not a bad version of the style, but that yeast weirdness has got to go, man. Other than that, the hops do well to more or less balance out the typical big stout flavours, and once the alcohol comes along, everything just sort of works itself out, y'know? Yeah, the rest of this is gonna go great with some spicy Hunan chicken - order up!

Photo of ocelot2500
4.25/5  rDev +14.2%

Pours a deep black with a pillowy tan head that leaves chunks of lacing.

Smells of deep roasted notes with some hops to it.

Tastes like a nicely hopped stout. Deep roasted notes lead off with dark chocolate, espresso, burnt sugar, and some slight char. This gives way to some syrupy sweetness. Hops add in with pine notes. Touches of dark fruit come next as well as some alcohol. Finishes with a slightly acrid burnt note.

Mouthfeel is full with a creamy amount of carbonation.

Overall, this is tasty, but be prepared for a hoppy, bitter stout.

Photo of Darkmagus82
4.04/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Poured from bomber into a snifter

Appearance – The beer pours a pitch black color with a one finger head of tan colored foam. The head has a good level of retention, fading to leave a decent level of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma is heaviest of a roasted malt smell with some notes of dark chocolate mixed within. Some nice sweeter smells of vanilla, caramel, and brown sugar as well as a little bit of dark fruits of cherry, plum, and raisin are there as well. A bit of coffee as well as a hint of a smoky smell round out the aroma, creating a rather dark and roasty, warming smell overall.

Taste – The taste begins with a roasted malt taste with a rather sweeter chocolate flavor consisting of a semi-sweet chocolate mixed with vanilla and caramel. More roasted malt enters the taste as it advances further from the start with some of the sweet fading just a tad. All while the sweet fades a bit, a decent showing of a coffee flavor as well as some toast and smoke flavors come to the tongue. In the end, with a bit of graininess as well as the onset of more roast and dark chocolate and coffee flavors, one is left with a moderately, but not too sweet mocha flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the slightly thicker and chewier side with a carbonation level that is quite low. For the style the carbonation and slightly thicker body are nice (although a little more thickness would have likely been even better) making for a good and intense stout flavor to soak into the tongue.

Overall – A rather nice stout overall that is very approachable and that at only ~ $5 for a bottle is a great value. This is a great imperial overall when considering price/characteristics.

Photo of Hopdaemon39
4.28/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I really like this especially for the price- pours a charcoal color with light colored head and good retention and lacing.

Smells like a very rich stout- nothing particularly sticks out but there's definitely a good roasted character and maybe a bit of raisin.

Tastes great- big roasted malt character, definitely caramel, some chocolate, and a bit of that raisin/dried fig character. Delish.

Feels pretty good- medium full bodied, modest carbonation, not so smooth. This tastes good; not incredible but definitely very good.

Photo of elNopalero
3.82/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This pours a coffee colored with cocoa foam. I get a mix of dark cocoa, French press coffee, and some green/marmalade notes on the aroma. There’s a piney bitterness with some marmalade and coffee roasiness, and a somewhat medicinal feel. Honestly, I felt like the beer had too much going on, in too many different directions. Glad I tried it, but one was enough.

Photo of lordofstarside
3.8/5  rDev +2.2%

Bomber to a snifter

Pours black with a finger and a half of brown foam. Mild carbonation on the sides, no real visibility, good lacing and retention 4.5/5

Smells of dark chocolate, roast coffee, a touch of smoke, and some alcohol. Honestly pretty subdued for a beer this big, not a lot of complexity 3.5/5

Taste is close with the nose. Roasted and smokey dark chocolate and coffee come together with some nuances of dark fruit and alcohol. Again, pretty straight forward 3.75/5

Feel is probably the best part, really smooth and creamy with a heavy body. Alcohol is concealed well, easy to sip 4.5/5

Overall not the most exciting, but a solid imperial stout regardless 3.80/5

Photo of archyquaffer
4.02/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a shaker pint glass. A moderate pour produces about a one inch bubbly, frothy and somewhat sticky head that settles down to a solid 1/8 inch pale tan coating of froth. Lacey rings linger as the glass is emptied. The beer is a deep ruby brown that requires a strong flashlight to see light through.

A very light toasted malt aroma with a little bit of herbal hops. The flavor is semi-sweet, with definite notes of chocolate, coffee, licorice, and dark fruit (cherry, chokecherry, plum), and a touch of citrus. A little alcoholic spice and some port-like flavors become more apparent with warming. A lingering bittersweetness lasts from sip to sip. The body is perhaps on the light side for a stout, which makes it somewhat dangerous in terms of quaffability.

This was an excellent deal at $4.79 for the bomber, purchased at Front Street Market in Butte, Montana. At this price, I would always seek this out.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.52/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, and slight char aromas. Taste is much the same with cocoa, char, and slight dark fruit flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of roast bitterness and an alcohol kick on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is strong and has a roast bitterness that lingers long after each sip.

Photo of Samuel906
3.87/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Pretty straightforward, but solid imperial stout here. Nothing mindblowing but hits all the important points. Interesting pour, jet black beer with a very light colored head. Gives it a cool looking contrast in artificial light. Thin lacing sticks to glass. Smell is sweet, perfumey, chocolate cake, roasted malt, soy sauce. Pretty standard taste, malts, chocolates dark fruits, vanilla. Very sweet, but not sticky. Toasty malts on the aftertaste. Feel was actually fairly thin for the style, low carbonation, doesn't really coat the mouth like some stouts. Overall good stout, not the best from Ninkasi, but not something to pass up either.

Photo of BierJager89
4.25/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Black with a brown ring of head.

S: Dark chocolate and coffee, some roasted malt in the nose.

T: Dark chocolate, coffee and dark fruit.

M: Smooth and full bodied.

O: This beer is really good, if a bit disappointing and boring. Still worth a try, and very tasty.

Photo of augustgarage
3.7/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber into my Bruery snifter.

Nearly opaque bistre body with faint auburn highlights and a small frothy desert sand crown that recedes to a creamy collar and a messy surface slick. Sandy lacing, viscous legs, decent retention.

Roast barley, coffee, and other dark malt notes greet the nose, followed by some sweeter yeast esters, and a hint of molasses, spice, and a slight herbal note.

Flavors follow the aroma closely with an emphasis on the malts - raw cocoa, toffee, and burnt sugar give a slightly acrid bent to the profile, though it mellows out with a spicy bitterness leading into an herbaceous drying finish. Hop presence is moderate throughout. Well balanced, but not greater than the sum of its parts.

Medium bodied, faintly prickly and moderately warming, though by no means fusel.

A decent stout, though slightly muddled with perhaps an excess of specialty malt or roast barley for my taste. A little goes a long way.

Photo of RJLarse
3.02/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

I bought a bottle of Ninkasi High Gravity Imperiale Stout in a bottle shop. Poured in to a pint glass.

Pours a black walnut color, opaque, with a chunky beige head.

Smell is sweet with a bite. A molasses and brown sugar aroma, along with a bourbon whiskey scent.

Taste is a lot like the aroma. Sweet molasses upfront with a bourbon flavored finish, and some alcohol heat.

Mouthfeel is thin for the style. Thin, flat and warm.

Overall I don't think I would go out of my way to have this again. I'd prefer more coffee and chocolate flavors in my stouts.

Photo of Zorro
4.01/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Clear dark brown colored ale with a small brown colored head.

Smells sweet and a lot like German chocolate cake. Strong chocolate and caramel. Slight Kahlua scent. Smells quite tame.

Starts out bittersweet with a emphasis on the sweet. Sweet with bitter chocolate flavor. Strong caramel and a hint of coconut, I'm reminded of German Chocolate Cake again. Slight amount of char but this is mainly bittersweet in flavor.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall a good stout.

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Imperiale High Gravity Stout from Ninkasi Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 209 ratings.