Stone Imperial Russian Stout - Stone Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 6,661 | Reviews: 2,568 | Display Reviews Only:
2.94/5 rDev -32.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3
2012 scores (4.5/3.5/4/4/4.5)
After having the 2013 vintage (and the Espresso version), I can now safely say this isn't quite for me. While it looks good and has a big feel, I just don't care for all the licorice in the flavor profile. And that's the problem here - it's too licorice dominant with no real complexity, depth, or even bold flavor. The thick, viscous mouthfeel means little if it doesn't have a great taste to prop it up.
I've got another bottle, and that one won't be cracked open until after tax season...in 2014. Right now, I can think of quite a few readily available imperial stouts that wipe the floor with this one.
Poured into a Williamsburg Winery wine glass.
A: Pours a damn near pitch black body with good thickness and viscosity. The head is a two finger light tan color with excellent texture, decent retention, and solid lacing.
S: All the usual RIS notes are here; slight soy, dry baker's chocolate, roasted malt, coffee, leather, and tobacco nicely mingle on the nose. While it's a nice melange, it's too subdued, much to its detriment.
T: The flavor starts off with some dark fruit notes (raisins, currants, plums) along side some leather and licorice. Afterward, it progresses toward dark chocolate and roast notes, and it finishes salty and slightly boozy. There are hints of tobacco and piny hops throughout the flavor progression. Balance is decent, but not impeccable, as it slightly leans towards fruitiness. On the plus side, it featured the kind of complexity I was expecting from a beer of this caliber.
M: Decently heavy with good viscosity and low carbonation, with a dry finish, almost to the point of causing the mouth to water. The aftertaste lingers nicely with dried dark fruits. Touches of alcohol can be felt on the tongue, throat, and stomach.
O: A tough beer to digest at first - but one that rewards its drinker with good complexity and a breadth of flavor storytelling. It isn't immensely drinkable, but then again, something like this should be savored slowly. Given its price point, it's one I can heartily recommend.
Serving type: bottle
05-05-2013 23:51:20 | More by ThisWangsChung
4.21/5 rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
22 oz. bottle poured into a goblet. 2014 Vintage. Bottled on 03/05/2014. Reviewed on 06/24/2014.
Appearance: Pours a dark, opaque black. Viscous looking. Half a finger of tan head, recedes to a film. Slight alcohol leg presence. No visible carbonation.
Aroma: Dark, roasted malts. Chocolate/coffee notes. A bit of sweetness - dark fruit/alcohol. Some earthy/spice character on the finish.
Taste: Strong dark chocolate/coffee at the beginning. More of the sweetness comes out further down the tongue, raisin-like fruit character Aftertaste is bitter and earthy, finishing with a slight alcohol sweetness.
Mouthfeel: BIg, thick beer. Lots of body present as it coats the mouth. A bit of alcohol warmth present at the back of the tongue and throat.
Overall: Very good Russian Imperial Stout. A well executed example of the style. Fairly easy to find during its annual release if Stone beers are available in your area. At $8 per bomber (locally), it's definitely recommended to try.
Serving type: bottle
05-05-2013 22:02:32 | More by hermit990
4.3/5 rDev -1.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
I have had several Russian Imperial Stouts lately and this one is near the top of the list (only Ten Fidy was better to me). I did expect more from this RIS as I had heard it was better than Ten Fidy, but nevertheless I really enjoyed it. I was really impressed with the appearance, a beautiful beer, very dark with an amazing tan head!
Serving type: bottle
05-04-2013 14:28:02 | More by DenverHopHead
Stone Imperial Russian Stout from Stone Brewing Co.
97 out of 100 based on 6,661 ratings.