1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Stone Imperial Russian Stout - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Stone Imperial Russian StoutStone Imperial Russian Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

6,661 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,661
Reviews: 2,568
rAvg: 4.35
pDev: 9.43%
Wants: 484
Gots: 1,419 | FT: 79
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.60% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-21-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Stone Imperial Russian Stout Alström Bros
Ratings: 6,661 | Reviews: 2,568 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BigTrubble
BigTrubble

North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

05-06-2013 21:48:17 | More by BigTrubble
Photo of Tom-Peters
Tom-Peters

California

4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

05-06-2013 19:45:06 | More by Tom-Peters
Photo of diehl07
diehl07

Ohio

4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

05-06-2013 19:43:52 | More by diehl07
Photo of lonewolfcry
lonewolfcry

Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

05-06-2013 19:09:51 | More by lonewolfcry
Photo of ThisWangsChung
ThisWangsChung

Maryland

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
Photo of GoGata
GoGata

Florida

4/5  rDev -8%

05-05-2013 23:17:03 | More by GoGata
Photo of hermit990
hermit990

Illinois

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
Photo of barrelofbastard
barrelofbastard

California

5/5  rDev +14.9%

05-05-2013 21:18:28 | More by barrelofbastard
Photo of Asics
Asics

Washington

4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

05-05-2013 16:44:32 | More by Asics
Photo of DruRho
DruRho

Maryland

3.75/5  rDev -13.8%

05-05-2013 01:42:15 | More by DruRho
Photo of ZombieJester
ZombieJester

California

3.5/5  rDev -19.5%

05-04-2013 23:21:29 | More by ZombieJester
Photo of KWMiles
KWMiles

Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

05-04-2013 22:58:07 | More by KWMiles
Photo of NSK79
NSK79

Illinois

4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

05-04-2013 21:17:12 | More by NSK79
Photo of oso
oso

Illinois

4/5  rDev -8%

05-04-2013 17:17:14 | More by oso
Photo of pearljam118
pearljam118

Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

05-04-2013 16:46:09 | More by pearljam118
Photo of DenverHopHead
DenverHopHead

Colorado

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
Photo of 4amepiphany
4amepiphany

Illinois

4/5  rDev -8%

05-04-2013 09:06:42 | More by 4amepiphany
Photo of brudz2134
brudz2134

Michigan

4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

05-04-2013 03:44:54 | More by brudz2134
Photo of brn9000
brn9000

Illinois

4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

05-04-2013 01:50:42 | More by brn9000
Photo of Brob245
Brob245

Missouri

4.5/5  rDev +3.4%

05-03-2013 21:32:55 | More by Brob245
Photo of KevinmusPrime
KevinmusPrime

Kentucky

4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

05-03-2013 16:41:28 | More by KevinmusPrime
Photo of GOGRANDE
GOGRANDE

Colorado

4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

05-03-2013 07:03:51 | More by GOGRANDE
Photo of boot11222
boot11222

Ohio

4.25/5  rDev -2.3%

05-03-2013 01:11:59 | More by boot11222
Photo of smutty33
smutty33

Connecticut

4/5  rDev -8%

05-02-2013 17:35:19 | More by smutty33
Photo of cgentzkow
cgentzkow

California

4/5  rDev -8%

05-02-2013 17:21:37 | More by cgentzkow
Stone Imperial Russian Stout from Stone Brewing Co.
97 out of 100 based on 6,661 ratings.