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Stone Imperial Russian Stout - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Stone Imperial Russian StoutStone Imperial Russian Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

6,930 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,930
Reviews: 2,583
rAvg: 4.34
pDev: 9.45%
Wants: 523
Gots: 1,513 | FT: 85
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
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Ratings: 6,930 | Reviews: 2,583 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of drewbage
3.85/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled from a 22oz bottle of the 2004 vintage. (Basically brand new bottle. woot!)

Beer is blacker than sin with a low crispy cafe au lait colored head.

Dry chocolate and anise come wafting off the brew with a piney hop and alcohol bump to close it.

Body is thick, viscous, oily with dry chocolate tones dominating and cutting through with a bright hoppy bite in the finish accentuated by a roast and alcohol slap.

drewbage, Jul 07, 2004
Photo of cypressbob
4.13/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

660ml bomber

Got this from BeerResearcher :)

Pours with a dark brown/black body, pitch, zero light penetration, none at all, head forms, dark tan but soon dissolves into the main body, thick thick body, oily , just like crude oil

Smell, I was a little bit taken back by the sweetness, slight alcohol aroma and a roasted malty kick

Taste, caramel and toffee, creamy mouthfeel, slight alcohol finish. Suprisingly sweet

A nice stout, the first imperial i've had but a little too sweet for my liking, i cant imagine getting this again (since it'd be a 10000 mile trip), made fantastic pork and apple sausages though

cypressbob, Jul 02, 2004
Photo of Billolick
4.63/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at BT in NYC, sheesh, Stone is just crushing folks at the Tiger this week! Their I.S. hardly seemed like the appropriate brew for a warm summer night in the big town, but this one had to be tried and enjoyed. Poured black and gooey with a solid dark tan head. Coffee and chocolate in the nose. Body/mouthfeel is rich, thick and motor oil in feel. Big and bold flavors of roasted malt, coffee, raisins, prunes, chocolate. Finishes dry with uggodly hops. This stuff has the style nailed. Classic sipper. I imagine this stuff would age very well also.

Billolick, Jul 02, 2004
Photo of imblane
4.88/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

(2004 Edition) Just like the label says, "Pours like Siberian Crude" Black as the Ace of Spades, dark as midnight, literally a black hole in my Stone IRS glass. Pours with a nice two finger head, much like a good quality shot of espresso, but dissipates quickly with minimal lacing. Smell is black currants, dark chocolate, anise and finishes with a medium alcohol, simply marvelous! Taste is smooth toasty malt, prunes, espresso and raisins, with a warming alcohol bite and a mild acidity. Thick, creamy, belly warming good!! I am cellaring an entire case for this winter. This is a huge complex IRS that makes me feel truly "Not Worthy"

imblane, Jul 02, 2004
Photo of palliko
4.83/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

An amazing stout!!! Pours out like crankcase oil, tastes like ambrosia. A full creamy head on a black coffee brew, with nice sticky lacing. An aroma of Arabica roasted coffee, raisin and molasses and a hint of the absolutley decadent 10.8% ABV hits your nose. With all the syrupy viscosity of cough syrup, (but none of the taste of cough syrup!) The body is solid with malt, and plenty of carbonation. The initial taste is a sweet maltiness backed by prune, and a molasses/caramel flavor that washes cleanly off your tongue. Toasted grain, coffee and dark chocolate prevails. The hops are so subtle as to be almost missed, but they are there. This stout will keep your taste buds guessing and fully engaged. Nothing dominates, all is in perfect harmony. The mouth is left with a taste that says, "Please, Sir. I'd like some more!"

palliko, Jun 29, 2004
Photo of beertaster13
4.95/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Best Stout I have ever had, hands down. Have had this 2003 bottle cellared for exactly one year. Pours a dark motor oil black with the darkest head I have ever seen, brown/tannish with dark black hues. Lacing sticks to the glass like it is possesed. Head not as thick as most stouts however. The smell is a sweet caramel/molasses with mocha beans. Hints of irish roasted coffee and toffee. Small tone of bananna as well. The taste was rich and full of mocha. The roasted malts was mixed with the powerful alcohol to create a monster. This is overpowering, but not to the point where it is undrinkable. A very full bodied stout, this stout is dangerous because you can drink alot because so good but I don't recommend it, it will mess you up. Pray to the gargoyle, for it will haunt you in your dreams.

beertaster13, Jun 28, 2004
Photo of Danny2321
4.4/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

In a 22oz Bottle at Anam Cara

Ever since I first tried Arrogant Bastard on tap, i've been on a quest to try anything from stone i can get my hands on.

This, like the others, did not disappoint. One of the creamier stouts i've had with a hint of chocolate, and incredibly smooth. This is the best stout i have had in the states, and probably only second ever for me to Guinness fresh at the brewery in Dublin.

Only knock may be the drinkability. This is a beer that can kick your ass if your not careful, and while i love that about it, not everybody can be a fan of that.

Danny2321, Jun 25, 2004
Photo of merlin48
4.68/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22oz bottle says late spring limited release, so I guess this one has had time to adequately age. Okay, here we go! Geeez, what a black pouring brew! No head to speak of. Nose is complicated and powerful. Coffee, tobacco, and a smoky campfire come to mind. Smooth as satin in the mouth, but very rich.Taste is complicated, and no doubt will get more complex as it warms up in the glass. I can already say that this is my favorite Stone.

As others have said, there's a lot going on here. Malt and hops disguise the alcohol very well. This is a very big beer and it looks like I'm going to be spending the next hour enjoying it. This is a classical imperial stout, and definitely a top ten overall.

Stone has done an excellent job creating such a complex yet rewarding imperial stout. The flavors just keep improving as it warms in the glass. You might not taste the alcohol, but after several minutes your brain and tummy let you know it's in there in spades. "King of Spades" would be an appropriate name for this black beast of a brew.

"limited early summer 2004 release" is a bit different from the 2003 version. Herbal anise is first to the nose, quickly followed by floral hops suggestive of wild roses on the vine. Roasted coffee notes become pervasive, but there is a pleasant aroma of fresh, concord grapes here that grabbed my attention. Low carbonation in the mouthfeel, with a port wine, vinous presence.

Appearance of the 2004 version was slightly disappointing. Not much of a head, and no lacing, but the body was jet black and opaque.

Very complex taste, with concord grapes and black licorice playing a major role. Espresso provides a nice roastiness, with bittersweet chocolate sliding in underneath. Rosewater lends a solid, floral hops essence.

Thick, rich, big, and sinfully drinkable. Old baseball glove leather and pipe tobacco emerge at the finish to contribute to the immense complexity. I cellared a bottle of this, as I think a few months aging will improve the 2004 release considerably. Be careful with this gigantic imperial Russian stout. Sit down, relax, and sip. This is going to give you a buzz by the time you finish it. I was disappointed not to find any English walnut nuttiness here, which I prefer in any stout, but with all the other characteristics going on here, this is just a minor, personal issue. This one is going to be quite an experience to enjoy after a few months in the cellar.

merlin48, Jun 25, 2004
Photo of goodheflover1280
3.83/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This is a big stout! The intial appearance is used motor oil black. This stuff pours thicker than any beer I've seen, although I'm no seasoned pro so there may be beers that are thicker. The head is brown, the beer is black. The smell is like coffe/chocolate/mocha, but that big 10.8% comes through also. The taste is good. It leaves a sweet/bitter taste on the back of my tongue after the first drink, and that taste remains for quite some time. The mouthfeel is thick, as I presumed it would be by the consistency of the beer. When tried with sweets a certain mocha/coffe flavor hits my palate strong. They didn't mask the alcohol content very well with this, but that would be my only complaint. The beer is made for sipping with desserts (I tried mine with a nice, warm cinammon roll). Watch out, this beer with creep up on you. Overall a pretty good stout.

goodheflover1280, Jun 23, 2004
Photo of meathookjones
4.58/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomb from the 2004 batch. As I was pouring this I was reminded that my car needs an oil change. Wow this is thick stuff, and about as dark and opaque as a beer can get. An excellent dark tan/brown head arose from the snifter as this was poured and stuck around for a bit before leaving a lace as is dropped to a bubbly ring around the beer. First smells that hit me were the bittersweet dark chocolate and the roasted coffee. After that notes of fruits and a touch of alcohol could be found. The taste begins with a bit of sweetness followed by the chocolate and roasted coffee. You get hit with the alcohol around the middle of the taste but not in a negative way and some fruity flavors as well. A nice bitter finish and this one lingers around a bit in your mouth well after you drink it. Mouthfeel is HUGE, a small sip seems to fill the mouth and it is so rich and creamy feeling. This goes down extremely easy for the alcohol and overall hugeness of the brew. Awesome brew I couldn’t be more pleased with the high expectations I had, highly recommended.

meathookjones, Jun 21, 2004
Photo of FormatKid
4.93/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

--Bottled in 2004 edition.

I got the word on the ‘net that this would be at Bacchus in Chattanooga, he received plenty of them so no sweat getting up there. I was very happy to be able to get this seasonal in Nowheresville, TN. I’ve been dying to get my hands on ANY imp stout and I figure the one from Stone should do nicely.

Pours out into the goblet as expected, blacker than the darkest night. Not even being held up to direct light effects it, in fact it seems to suck the surrounding light into it like a black-hole. I can detect a bit of carbonation that is pressed right up into the glass that streams up to form a creamed-coffee color, brown head. You have to agitate it to get much of a head here. The head recedes rather quickly into a slick foamy layer on top.

A fruity smell is much heavier on the nose than I would expect…smells exactly like…wild berries! Behind that a rich and deep roasted coffee/bitter chocolate smell is evident. It smells very delicious.

It leads off sweet and round, rolling back slowly across my palate. Middle is complex and beautiful, sweet fruitiness (berries); rich, roasted malts are very dense in the middle as well bringing a bitter chocolate character. This is accompanied by the first ever so slight twang of a slightly vinous alcohol flavor. The finish contains a nice sturdy dose of bitter hops and a strong shot of espresso. The vinous alcohol character is evident in the finish as well, but it’s presence is most known by the warmth spreading along my esophagus. A loooong, slow ride, and each sip feels like a mouthful. Licking your lips brings a reminder of the depth of the bitterness and beauty of this brew. Mouthfeel is heavy with very light play of carbonation, not quite as dense as I was expecting though.

Overall I am VERY pleased with my first Imperial Stout experience. I am glad I grabbed a couple of these to cellar and/or drink at will… it will be hard to hang on to them, but I’d like to see how one develops in a year or so.

FormatKid, Jun 20, 2004
Photo of sideshowrob
5/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2004 release, sampled as soon as the bottle had chilled.

Wow. To paraphrase Homer, this is a groin-grabbingly good Imperial Stout. Despite it being summer, a lot of breweries seem to be releaseing IRS's right now. While I haven't had a bad one from anyplace, the wide sample size really allowed the Stone example to shine through. Stone has very limited distibution on the right coast, but this puppy was worth the effort to find.

Appearance - none more black. Pure ink, with a golden brown head, reminicient of the burnt topping on a good creme-brulee. Smell was fantastic, lots of complex and well balanced notes waifting through; a slightly sweet overall note. Taste and mouthfeel were nearly transcendental. Again, the complexity and balance of this brew are what set it apart from other IRS's, all the coffee, roasted/smoky, currant and buttery notes are there, but none domminate. The zen-like qualities of this brew add to the enjoyment - despite it's high ABV, this brew does not go down like a five course meal. It's very easy to sip all night long.

All in all, I can't imagine how one could improve upon this beer, other than to make it a year-round, and have more cases cross the Rockies.

sideshowrob, Jun 19, 2004
Photo of Gueuzedude
4.88/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2004 Bottling, Sampled June, 2004
Pours a pitch black color that supports a deep brown creamy head. Rich dark malt aromas waft from my glass, and are joined by notes of rum, burnt raisins, toasted biscuits, and a fair amount of grain character. The taste is intensely malty, and it almost has a saltiness to it. It is quite rich, yet somehow light for an Imperial Stout. There is a nice low level of malt sweetness here that balances the roast character, and each of these components is in some way muted by the interaction of the other. This beer is definitely rich and creamy from the front end to just before the finish, after this the burnt, roast malt flavors kick in and linger around a bit

2001 Bottling, Sampled June 2004
I have been saving this bottle for quite a while. Since I am going to be getting a case of the 2004 pretty soon I decided that now would be a good time to try an aged sample.

It pours motor oil black with a deep dark brown thin head. It is quite a clear deep brown color when held up to the light through a thin cross section. The aroma is ripe with notes of dried prunes, raisins, miso, and sherry. There appears to be at least some oxidation character in the nose. Underneath the other aromas I get hints of espresso, and roasted barley. The beer is still quite thick and viscous; it is fairly sweet up front with strong dark malt flavors just dominating my palate. This is incredibly tasty and has aged quite well in my closet. It is slightly oxidized, which adds more complexity to this already complex beast, there is a hint of sherry and some port notes, but none of the wet cardboard type oxidation flavors. It is quite fruity up front with notes of prune, raisin, and cherry. The finish is dry and slightly astringent from all of the dark malt notes that includes espresso, burnt toast, and roasted barley.

Did I say that this is damn tasty? It is quite smooth, and just slides viscously down my throat, coating my entire mouth with lingering flavors that refuse to dissipate entirely. I take another sip and the process begins anew. The middle of this beer is laden with smooth dark malt flavors, but the burnt/ roast character of this beer really only hits you at the very end. As this beer slowly disappears and as it continues to warm up, it just gets better and better. This beer is awesome right now; I am definitely going to have to age quite a few of the 2004 vintage.

Gueuzedude, Jun 15, 2004
Photo of Thrasher
4.6/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2001 edition. Well, I've been rash enough in the past to scoff at Stone's beers, and the imperial stout style, deeming both of them as not-quite-worthy of all the heaping praise bestowed upon them. With this 3-year-old Stone Imp. Stout (Russian was on the label at that point), I am eating my words, or should I say, drinking them. And they're delicious. It pours a dark, dark brown (just shy of black) with the smallest head, belying the alcohol content. Brilliant aroma of chocolate and vanilla. The flavor is obviously enormous, with huge portions of milk chocolate, dark chocolate, and vanilla bean. Undercurrents of smoke, spices, mocha, oak, wood, sherry, brown sugar, lightly burnt vegetables, slight anise, perhaps nutmeg, and black currants (misspelled on the bottle). Despite this bonanza of flavors, the beer managed to be somewhat mellow, and completely integrated in all aspects. None of the flavors jumped out and showboated; they all worked together as a team. However, the vanilla bean flavor was most noticeable on my palate, unexpected and supremely enjoyable. There was some lactic sourness throughout, and a big bitter coffee bite appeared towards the finish, but only for an instant. The mouthfeel was gloriously smooth, and not especially thick which surprised me. The alcohol was a big part of this beer, but perhaps from the aging it received, it was not at all out of place. The beer became thicker and stickier at room temperature. All in all, wonderful. A big thanks to HiroProtagonist for first of all, locating this marvel, and then sharing this rare, perfectly aged gem with me!

Thrasher, Jun 13, 2004
Photo of egajdzis
4.63/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2003: Poured an opaque black with no head. Actually the bubbles on top, formed like a hurricane on the radar map. Strong aroma of roasted malt, dark fruit (berries?), hops, coffee, and alcohol. Initially prickly on the tongue, leads way to chocolate, coffee, roasted notes, and some hops. Very sweet, with a creamy mouthfeel. I tasted this young, and it is aging gracefully right now.

egajdzis, Jun 13, 2004
Photo of vladtheimpaler
4.15/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

2003 Bottle courtesy of Eyedrinkale. Pours deep brown with a tan head. Aroma of hops and chocolate. Big malty flavor, coffee and bittersweet chocolate. Flavor has some hops and plenty of malt bitterness in addition to all that hop bitterness. One tasty Russian. Thanks Mike!

vladtheimpaler, Jun 07, 2004
Photo of PopeJonPaul
4.63/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is an ass-kicker of an Imperial stout. Carbonation: none. Pours the consistency of maple syrup. So sticky sweet and syrupy if you let it dry on the counter it will trap flies. Smells like a molasses humidifier. Complex chocolatey\fruity\coffee\roasted-malt\caramel taste with a tart hoppy bitterness and a silky-smooth mouthfeel. So thick it's almost like drinking pudding. Who put this in such a big bottle? Awesome.

PopeJonPaul, Jun 01, 2004
Photo of Bierguy5
4.55/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2003 bottle. Pours a deep, dark black liquid with a tan foamy, creamy head. The head stayed for a while, and there was a good amount of lace on the glass. The smell was of chocolate, coffee, and maybe some spices thrown in. Taste is rich chocolate with hints of espresso, and fruit, like plum. Good hop bitterness. You can taste the alcohol presence. This is full bodied, no debating. One of the thickest beers I have ever had. Low carbonation, which is good in this case. Overall, GIVE ME MORE NOW! No doubt, one of the best beers I have ever had. This is imperial stout at its best. I will have this whenever I can get my hands on it!

Bierguy5, May 31, 2004
Photo of ColForbin
4.9/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Tonight I'm drinking a 22oz 2003 Stone Imperial Stout.

This beer is as black as black can be. I tried to shine a very bright halogen light through it to see what color I could see, but no light passed through. In fact, this beer seems to be sucking up all of the light that comes near it like a black hole. It pours with the slightest dark tan coating of bubbles that completely fades to a slight ring around the snifter I am drinking out of.

Aroma is extremely complex, raisins, sour cherries, caramel, burnt sugar, dark chocolate and some coffee notes are present. One of the most complex beers I have ever brought to my lips. Taste is more of the same, with the burnt sugar and raisin notes dominating and a bitter french roast coffee/bakers chocolate aftertaste. A warming alcohol feeling follows. This beer is incredibly thick - they compare it to Siberian crude on the bottle and I can't say I disagree. I think they should advertise this as the anti-Atkins - it probably has about 100g of carbs and every one of them is delicious. If I had to pick a beer to sustain me through a fast I would pick this one - it is as good a meal as I have ever eaten. Deserves every bit of praise that it has gotten.

ColForbin, May 29, 2004
Photo of LuckySevens82
4/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber, Limited Spring 2003 release.
Pours an oil slick black with a small (very small) light brown head. No light can penetrate the liquid. There is a certain amount of lacing on the glass, but it seems it would be better if the head were more prevalent.
Aroma is chocolate, BIG chocolate. Some coffee and hop florals are present as well.
Taste is also chocolate, some coffee. This is a very smooth stout and I have hard time believeing that it is such a high ABV brew. This is almost as sweet as some of the milk stouts I've tried.
Despite the sweetness and overall oil slick mouthfeel there is a measure of alcohol dryness to the finish.
This is a good Imperial Stout, but definitely not one of my favorites. While I am glad I tried it, I will neither have this one again, nor seek it out.
[Added clarification]: This brew is not available in my neck of the woods so I had to go through some effort to get it (this is why I would not seek it out). If it were available in FL, I would most probably get this one again.

LuckySevens82, May 17, 2004
Photo of Sammy
4.43/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

smooth thick chocolate more than coffee. Like a porter. Roasty aroma - not the main show. Beautiful black. 2003 edition. A bit acidic tempered by some food. Bit of carbonation - perfect.
Had a 2004 a year later, wasn't as great but will keep the rating. Had 2005, and dropped the rating to the average of the three-still very good. Thick though nowhere near the thickest RIS I have had.
Had it in late 2006 and it was great roast and chocolate and winelike, thick and mellowed 2-year old bottle.

Sammy, May 02, 2004
Photo of elmocoso
4.4/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Imperially Black.
I kicked up a nice finger or two of head, clinging.
Sweet mollassis, smoke in the nose
chocolate - almost too sweet (d-.5)
Full mouthfeel combo with taste
almost too much for a full glass
a sipper or after dinner drink.
I was excited to try this one, and it
did not let me down. I would like to see
it in 7-12 oz bottles though.


elmocoso, Apr 28, 2004
Photo of joshlara
4.55/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 2003, sampled April 26, 2004. Like the rest of us I have been waiting with great anticipation to try this beer. Finally found at Half Time, I wish I bought more than one.

Appearance: Pours an opaque black, no light can hope to get through this baby. A hard pour generates a beautiful rich brown head that dissipates to a thin collar. Thick as motor oil and black as night.

Smell: Another striking characteristic of this beer is the smell. Right after the pour strong aromas wafted from the glass. Chocolate, black currant, roasted malt, dark fruit, molasses, black cherries, bittering hops, and biscuity malt all make themselves known. The alcohol is also very noticeable. I don't always pick up the different aromas found in many bigger beers but I definately was able to find them here.

Taste: This is so thick and extremely complex. Multiple flavors push the palate to its edge. The flavors are very distinguishable. Chocolate and black currant begin the flavor barrage. Cherries are found somewhere in the middle. Toasted biscuit and nutty coffee flavors finish the extravaganza. There is a noticeable alcohol kicker accompanying the cherries and biscuit. Hops definately take a back seat which is surprising from Stone. Full bodied and massive, there is enough body to anchor the massive flavor and alcohol.

Overall: This reminds me a lot of Rogue's imperial stout. Huge, watch out as drinking this by itself can get you a little loopy. A meal in itself. I don't love most imperial stouts, too much dark fruit and black currant, but the Stone offering offers so much more. The alcohol presence is almost overwhelming but it ends up complimenting the multiple flavors nicely. I must say that I don't think I have ever had a beer with so much alcohol hitting you after every sip. Stone Imperial Stout is big enough to handle the alcohol.
I will definately purchase this every time I see it. If you ever want to try a beer that lives up to the hype, this is the one. A great drinking experience.

joshlara, Apr 27, 2004
Photo of jvajda
4.1/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Limited Spirng 2003 Release

Appearance: Jet black with a three finger, dark head. Has the 'meal in a glass' look.
Smell: A little sour like it may have gone bad. Not a pleasant smell.
Taste: Big roasted, chocolate, creamy taste. Maybe a hint of vanilla. Bitter finish. Alcohol comes out from hiding while it warms.
Mouthfeel: Oh so creamy and milky, this one soothes the tongue. Light carbonation keeps it welcome.
Drinkability: Wow, this one is one of the best stouts I've tried. Great for a dessert, but not too much more.

jvajda, Apr 26, 2004
Photo of CBFanWish
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

As black as the soul of death himself with a thick brown head that lasts for what seems forever. Aroma of toasted barley, malts, chocolate, coffee and caramel. The taste is of dark chocolate with caramel accents with wonderful hints of chocolates.
I had to have this. I have had it for about a month, but I just couldn't wait any longer. When I poured it I was entranced by the deep black colour and thick frothy rich head. The head released a wonderful aroma that just warms the soul. I really enjoyed drinking this. A rich dark chocolate taste perfectly blended with coffee and caramel. Sweet yet bitter at the same time.
Without a doubt, the best imperial stout I have ever had.

CBFanWish, Apr 07, 2004
Stone Imperial Russian Stout from Stone Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 6,930 ratings.