Stone Imperial Russian Stout - Stone Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 6,634 | Reviews: 2,568 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Foxtrot:
4.88/5 rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5
Alright. Its been more than 1 year since I've enjoyed Stone's IRS, and wanted to re-review it. My palate has changed a lot, and was just curious to see if the score change.
Bomber to snifter. Pours blackest obsidian with no brown/amber hues around the edges. Head was of dark brown sugar, with decent retention. The legs of this beer are also pretty wild to look at. Thick and viscous like a fine scotch or bourbon.
Now onto the aroma, and what a pleasant aroma at that. The aroma is incredibly multi-faceted with chocolate, caramel, and molasses being the most notable components while vanilla and espresso heightens the olfactory experience. Also detected a touch of alcohol, but its a 2010 bottle.
The ultimate test; taste. I hardly use any harsh language but F&*@! this beer is unbelievable! Flavors to note first off are chocolate, rich and dark, molasses, toffee, raisins, ripest cherries, and brown sugar. Mid palate is a real treat; currants, licorice, and some roasted char really linger and add to the sweetness at the front end. The contrast from sweetness to bitterness is phenomenal, and subtle. Finish is nice and long as to be expected of the style, but the aftertaste really makes it a pleasure to enjoy in between sips.
Mouthfeel is just about the silkiest and smoothest I've come across in my beer career. The carbonation levels are spot on for the style. Just enough to lift the flavors off your tongue, but not too much to hide it's subtleties. Big and bold and smooth are the three words that come to mind.
This is a hot beer, but being a 2010 bottle, it is still immensely drinkable. This beer is a sipper of the highest echelon, and should be enjoyed with a good snifter and chocolate to really make this beer pop.
P.S. I loved this beer the first time I reviewed it, but having it now feels like I'm doing this beer more justice. I thoroughly enjoyed this beer and will absolutely buy a case to cellar. Stone, this is a mighty good RIS.
Breaking in the new snifter with this beer
Poured a absolutely jet black with no light discoloration around the edges. Nice foamy tan head dissipated after a few minutes from pour.
Lots of notes of chocolate and dark malts with some very very ripe cherry scents and of brown sugar.
Tastes of bitter chocolate are every present, with dark fruits taking a back seat. Mellows out with double doses of molasses and caramel to make this Russian Imperial Stout absolutely fantastic. Finishes very smooth with good carbonation throughout.
Mouthfeel was near syrup. Coats the entire mouth with a slick and smooth goodness that is very typical of the style.
A good drinkability factor, besides the liver loving 10.8% ABV it is one beer that I will be sure to keep an eye on.
Serving type: bottle
05-12-2010 07:09:24 | More by Foxtrot
More User Reviews:
4.23/5 rDev -2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
Appearance: pours with half a finger of khaki head which settled in to the edges of the glass. Above average active carbonation for the style. Rings of sticky lacing left behind at each level.
Smell: Dark fruit, bitter chocolate, plenty of hops, and sweet malts jump out right away. Each time you take a pull, a different aroma seems to stand out. Caramel and molasses sweetness carries into the body and is the biggest player throughout drinking. Lightly roasted malts with some dry coffee grounds picked up on the back end.
Taste: The front is waves of velvety smooth malts washing over the palate. Body opens up with bitter chocolates and and bright hops. Espresso and coffee grounds provide some earthy flavors on the back end. A malt sweetness runs throughout which clashes a touch with the hops and chocolate but goes so well with everything else. The finish is that easy sweetness with some light roasted malts.
Mouthfeel: Transitions of sweetness, roasted coffee and malts, and creamy textures are great. Carbonation is spot on.
Overall: For me, Stone is one of the truly great breweries I have access to. Their lineup is complex and affordable, yet all their beers have their signature hop profile that says "this is american hoppy beer". This is a great RIS that I look forward to every year. In the end, they make great beer so they get my money.
Serving type: bottle
07-23-2014 17:11:49 | More by KFBR392
Stone Imperial Russian Stout from Stone Brewing Co.
97 out of 100 based on 6,634 ratings.