Stone 8th Anniversary Ale - Stone Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 261 | Reviews: 231 | Display Reviews Only:
4.03/5 rDev +0.8%
I had a bottle of this at the Stuffed Sandwich. Poured a rich brown with a thin light beige head that petered out to a thin collar a bit too quickly.
Hearty caramel, earthy malts, herbal hops and the aroma of nuts greeted my nostrils. Inititally it seemed totally malt-laden but, in typical Stone fashion, the hops refused to be outdone and assert themselves.
The taste was full of toasted grain and caramel up front. The flavors of nuts and a hint of wood came out mid-palate. Finally, refusing to play second fiddle to the malt character, a rush of hops that vaccilated between herbal and piney flooded the palate and set things in balance. A light alcohol bite nipped at the throat with each swallow. The feel was medium bodied, creamy-smooth, and had nice carbonation.
I'm not a terribly big fan of brown ales but Stone has a winner here in their 8th Anniversary Ale. Quite quaffable and worth checking out.
11-13-2004 17:26:58 | More by Boilermaker88
4.22/5 rDev +5.5%
On tap at the Moan and Dove in Amherst, MA. Appearance is a rich dark amber. Smell is very deep...malty and inviting. Taste is a gfeat belnd of malt and hops. Both are very deep and rich....the hop finish adds the deep balance that makes this a special brew. Mouthfeel was very smooth. Easy on the drinkability scale due to its smoothness.
11-13-2004 01:12:27 | More by edchicma
4.3/5 rDev +7.5%
A couple hundred words of verbal antics written on the bottle lead me to believe this is a reincarnation of a 1998, one-off called Lee's Mild. The 8th Anniversary pours a clear, chestnut brown body with a small, tan head that quickly falls into a persistent collar and film of lace. Patchy lace also decorates the sides of the glass.
Interesting nose begins with chocolate..and more chocolate. Caramel, prunes, smoked almonds, licorice, and vanilla also emerge to tease the nose.
Mouthfeel features some hops bitterness, and is medium bodied with medium carbonation. Feels good in the mouth.
Taste is complex for a "brown ale". Lots of chocolate malt, caramel, fresh bready malt, a hint of warming alcohol, dark fruits, and a solid almond nuttiness. Hops bitter well, and waver between grassy and floral. Finish is smooth and clean.
I ususally don't care for brown ales, but leave it to Stone to create an exception. At 7.8% abv, this could be considered an "imperial brown ale", but the abv is generally well hidden in the complexity of flavors. At times, I even detected a resemblance to a strong dark ale from Belgium, in this one. Very interesting. Very tasty. Very drinkable. I wish I had a case of these in my cellar.
11-11-2004 11:58:14 | More by merlin48
4.2/5 rDev +5%
Pours a honey brown, settling to a clear medium mahogany with a somewhat loosely bubbled yet firm finger high foam of light tannish hue. A whispy thin skim stays a float the entire session as does a solid collaring. Lacing coats the glass well in sporatic sheeting. One lavishly impressive looking glass of brown ale if I ever saw one; which ain't many.
Smells of frappicchino cocoa and caramel malted goodness with a slight roastyness and even slighter note of nuts. Overall very clean and pleasantly welcoming on the nose.
Flavors are mild but invigoratingly yummy. Nice malt base of candy caramel, akin to most of the Stone line of brews. Roasty edged with a small nutty hint in the backing. Finishes clean and airy dry with bits of cocoa.
Feel is smooth and malty rich with a small roasty tweek thats boarding on a burntness. Yet the roastyness never excedes past the malt base by much, keeps clean, and drys out nicely in the finish with a favorable return of roasty draw. Well carbonated and nearly full for a brown ale. Beastly so actually, very Stone-like in my mind, or should I say "buds".
Quite quaffable and easy flowing with the smoothness. Fine, fine stuff, another keeper from the fellas at Stone. I found it to be up to par, and beyond by a big measure, with any brown ale I've encountered.
A super Stone quality thanks goes to xlperro for the chance to gulp it down!
11-11-2004 01:24:35 | More by tavernjef
3.68/5 rDev -8%
22 oz bomber served slightly chilled in a pint glass.
Appearance: Clear ruby red topped by a smallish tan head that receded to a film of thin bubbles. Lacing was pretty decent.
Smell: Caramelized and toasted bready malts with a figgy sort of presence. British-style hops, kinda grassy and herby. Hints of pine.
Taste: Molasses, toffee and biscuity malts interwoven with low alpha acid hop strains I'm guessing. They provide enough to make this sort of bitter, though. Mild taste of booze.
Mouthfeel: Solid medium body with a lingering bitter aftertaste.
Drinkability: Impy mild? Strong Brown? Whatevah... an intriguing beer that most resembled a hoppy wee heavy. Worth trying at least once if you have the opportunity. Can't say I'll be cellaring this or repeating the experience, though.
11-10-2004 22:31:43 | More by ManekiNeko
4.25/5 rDev +6.3%
Pours a brown with light red highlights a tan head that is small and vanishes quick some spotty lace. Aroma is earthy toasted malt nutty caramel malt light chocolate lightly fruity with a dash of floral hops. Taste is pleasing lightly toasted malt, nuts, caramel, toffee even down to earth taste. Finishes with some fruit flavors with a lingering light hop bitterness. Malt feels so smooth low carbonation full bodied when then the carbonation picks up and lifts the fruity floral flavors onto the tounge. Best tasting brown ale I have sampled. Mouthfeel is right side of medium a smooth full bodied beer. Drinkability is good a great brown ale with a good complex full flavored taste, not my favorite style but this beer will make you a believer in brown ales.
11-08-2004 03:09:22 | More by mntlover
3.95/5 rDev -1.3%
Nice caramelly brownish hue, bright apple-red at the foot, and 'round the sides, flush with toasty tan head sitting tidily above.
rosy sweetness in the nose, roasty, replete with dark fruits, a touch of spice, plenty of malt, and just a touch of hops...bigger than other browns, but not as forward as you'd expect from Stone...cheers to them for keeping us on our toes.
Full, rich, malty flavor on first sip...great presence on the palate, candy-ish, but not to any extreme degree. Flavor is there with every returning swallow, mouthfeel is plentiful, body is full, but not too much so, finish is softly drying, and longish.
This is an anniversary brew to trip up some who may second guess Stone's mission with their expectations. These are those who may not find any delight in a brown ale, no matter how different it may be. "Where are the hops?" I hear them screaming. Not every beer can be an Arrogant Bastard, nor should they be...although the higher alcohol is peeking through, and this brown is showing how different it is in that regard.
(BTW, I'm attempting to read the label, and glean the intentions of Stone, sans dictionary...what the hell are they talking about? but I'm good at linguistic guesswork, and I think I can make some kind of sense out of it..."we're giving you a boozed-up mild ale whether you like it or not", basically...and i was very amused...wonder what an accurate translation would say? What if you transalted it into Klingon and back?)
This is a very good beer, just not intended to win the hearts of hop-headed beer-geeks. I had a similar experience last week, when Town Hall's 7th Anniversary brew wasn't a hoppy pale like last year, but a bold ESB. And it, too, was very nice, for an interesting twist on the style. So be it!
Let's hear it for the trip-us-uppers at Stone, who can feel free to dazzle me any which way the want...or not!
11-08-2004 02:47:07 | More by feloniousmonk
4.3/5 rDev +7.5%
This brew presents itself as a deep chestnut-colored liquid with a thin white head. The aroma is teriffic malty and big (expected from Stone), with a bit of yeast, a hint of alcohol, bits of vanilla, caramel, and hops. Yummy. The taste is malty and earthy, with a little toasted grain and a big bitter finish. Alcohol warming is present, but the attribute is really well hidden. Very nice on an early November night.
11-07-2004 22:45:15 | More by Suds
3.43/5 rDev -14.3%
I've said "sweet" a lot when talking about Stone beers and always meant it in that Stifler-meets-Miami-singles-bar-guy way. You might know it as "SUH-weet." Synonyms include "saucy," "nice" (see also NOI-ce), and "ughhh (ughhh, naNAnaNA)."
But 8th is sweet in the other, much more maligned sense of the word. Perhaps to cover up the smokey alcohol or perhaps to balance hops that are naturally out of proportion (being Stone and all), the caramel/toffee sweetness is first interesting and then just plain obnoxious, like the opening minutes of a late-night movie on Showtime.
This feels in the mouth like a mild ale, somehow, with half a shot of vodka mixed in.
The malty brown flavor is excellent and the hop profile of great interest, but it seems that Stone has used the 8th anniversary to merge all of their favorite styles (IPA, stock ale, and stout) into a hodge-podge that some might call a brown ale.
I'm not one to keep beer from breweries like Stone and Three Floyds and others stuck to BJCP style guidelines. Lee Chase and every brewer like him keeps American craft beer ahead of the rest of the world, challenging, revising, and ultimately revolutionizing the art with creativity and commendable spirit. But he, too, is faulted and this is a beer wraught with overzealousness, perhaps better as an idea than its actual manifestation.
Sweet, but deceptive and ultimately confused. Hm. I think I dated her once.
11-06-2004 19:34:23 | More by ngandhi
4.18/5 rDev +4.5%
Never been a big brown ale fan but hey, it's stone, so gotta try this...
Appears a deep ruby brown color that is beautiful. the head is small to put it mildly. Aroma of sweet chocolate, some coffee notes, and a bit of hop spicyness. taste is good, but not great. The alcohol pokes out alot here, but I like the balance of hearty malt and bittering hops. Not much hop flavor, but it suites the style well. Nice creamy and nicely carbonated mouthfeel, with good drinkability. A good beer and a very nice change up
11-05-2004 23:59:33 | More by avylover
3.5/5 rDev -12.5%
This beer poured a ruby brown body with a small whitish tan head that died rather quickly.
The nose was surprisingly subtle for stone. Biscuit, some caramel, a soft floral touch, wood, soft fruits with a full barley malt smell.
Full bodied with a very sweet syrupy mouthfeel. A very light carbonation with a subdued hop bitterness. Not to say it wasnt bitter, but it just seemed to have a bitter flavor with all the high end cut off. Sort of like when you turn the high tone knob on your stereo down. Big rich syrupy malt with just a delicious big caramel malt taste.
Not really any crazy overpowering flavors in this baby. Just a simple, but decent, big malty beer with a somewhat numbing hop. Sadly my least favorite stone to date.
11-02-2004 08:47:15 | More by taez555
4.55/5 rDev +13.8%
I enjoyed this exceptional brew on draft at Anam Cara. It was served in a wineglass and seemed quite unlike a traditional American brown. The aroma of chocolate and wood hat subtle hints of burnt malt. The flavors were more complex blending fig, straw and other notes with a chocolate and woody base. It was an exquisitely well bodied sipping beer that managed to hide its alcohol well. It would be very interesting to see what a year or so of aging would do to the flavors.
10-31-2004 15:10:35 | More by AllThingsNinja
3.9/5 rDev -2.5%
The pint glass fills with deep russet liquid of notable clarity. A few sparse, languid streamers are not enough to sustain a finger of tan head... it dies into a greyish film that leaves wispy rings down the glass, but... ho hum. The basic smell here is cocoa--most of all like cocoa breakfast cereal--and it's great! There's also the husky aroma of freshly cracked walnuts and, increasingly, a finish of vanilla extract. Cake-frosting nosefeel is very supportive of these rich, fatty, bakery smells. Shaved dark chocolate tastes develop a bitter, creamy depth reminiscent of fresh Brazil nuts. Finish of nut shell (as opposed to nut meat) grows in woodsy strength, by turns suggesting hazelnut cordials--or the grounds at the bottom of a bourbon-spiked cup of coffee. Smooth, oily mouthfeel is balanced by a carbonated ping, with a good, lastingly bitter aftertaste; but I think that the flavors would match better with a creamier body. I wonder how long I could session on this beer. If only it had been more of a looker, I'd call it one of the better brown ales I've had.
10-28-2004 23:11:39 | More by NearerMyBeerToMe
3.7/5 rDev -7.5%
Pours into the glass a very dark ruby/brown combination with a thin layer of head that disappears quickly.
Smell is pretty light, small hints of caramel malts and some earthy hop aromas
Taste has a nice sweet honey, clove, and caramel taste up front and is followed by a very dry earthy hoppiness. Bitter, but not enough to overpower the malts.
Mouthfeel is very thick and creamy with a slight fuzzy warming to it.
Drinkability isn't bad, very enjoyable, but not something I could drink a lot of.
10-28-2004 06:07:30 | More by bashiba
4.15/5 rDev +3.8%
Pours from the bomber a nice deep ruby brown with a small tan head. The hints of red shoot out when held up to the light. The smell is caramel/molasses upfront with some citrus hop tones in the background. A bit bready and roasty.
First sip is a huge blast of maltiness, caramel and chocolate tones dance on my tongue. They are juxtaposed by a citrus hop background that adds a nice amount of biterness to the brew. Some spiciness there as well. Leave it to Stone to take a nomally tame style and give it a good kick in the ass.
Mouthfeel is great...good body and excellent carbonation..a please to drink. As for drinkability....I'd have another...tasty and easy to drink. Almost 8% and I don't even notice it. Thanks to kmpitz2 for the opportunity to try yet another tasty Stone brew!!
10-27-2004 02:09:54 | More by orbitalr0x
2.85/5 rDev -28.8%
My local store always waits weeks and weeks before putting the beer they get on the shelves. Pisses me off to no end, but lets me get a little word of mouth about the beers before I plunk down my preciou$ ca$h. This one came recommended from a Stone-head. I should have known that some people will support their team to the end. Especially when you're within Stone-throw of Chicago. Damned cubbies.
Those crazy asses at Stone would be the ones to create a ~8% ABV beer and call it a mild. The rambings on the bottle are just getting increasingly incoherent.
Deep scarlett in color. Smallish head, no lace.
Malt monster. Hints of booze on nose.
This beer is hard to describe other than that its a malty disaster. The bitterness here isn't the tangerine-like roundedness of other Stoney's. No hints of floral hops, just unbalanced bitterness and lots of hints of a brown ale on steroids.
If this beer is made as a counterpoint of all their hoppy beers, well, i'm okay with it. But on its own, come on. I would never get this again.
To paraphrase Moe the bartender, this beer is post-modern. Weird for the sake of being weird.
10-25-2004 05:17:38 | More by GreenWBush
4.2/5 rDev +5%
Appearance: Wow. It's... wow. Deep, crystal clear red/burgundy with amber undertones. Active, fine carbonation. Thick, dense off-white head with--am I seeing this?--a rose tint. Very good retention. Lacing and collar throughout. Absolutely gorgeous; one of the best looking beers I've seen.
Smell: Sweet and rich, deep toasted chocolate/caramel malt, brandy, cherry, black raspberry, slight alcohol, a touch of hops, a bit of yeast. Yum.
Taste/Mouthfeel: Smooth and soft mouthfeel with medium body. Starts with a big mouthful of malted milk, milk chocolate, caramel, raspberry, cherry. Becomes a bit hoppy (almost zero by Stone standards) into the finish, little rind, dries out a bit. Some alcohol heat, and white pepper lingers.
Drinkability: So beautiful, so delicious, must... drink... more... Nope, 8%, too freakin' big to session.
Leave it to Stone to create something as ridiculous as an Imperial Mild--and make it work. This is just a damn good beer.
10-23-2004 05:58:21 | More by WetCoaster
3.88/5 rDev -3%
another nice offering from stone. not amongst their best, but still nice nonetheless, if not for the fact that it's easily one of their more mass-consumer friendly beers. it pours a nice dark brown colour with a minimal to moderate head that is off white in colour. the smell here is decent but a bit thin by stone standards. not much going on here outside of the basic brown ale nose of some earth, malt and perhaps a touch of chocolate and caramel. surprisingly, the hop presence was kept to somewhat of a minimum (at least for stone) here. the flavour was solid. nothing more, nothing less. it didn't blow me away but was still quite tasty all around. hops were a touch more prevalent here than in the nose, though not by much. toasted malt ruled the show with less of a touch of chocolate and caramel than the nose. regardless, everything is well balanced and smooth, though perhaps a touch thin for my liking. i prefer a heartier, dry brown ale and this was more traditionally balanced and a touch sweet. a good brew overall that won't disappoint, but won't part seas either. definitely give it a try and even use it as a brew to convert someone over to better brews or turn someone on to the style of brown ales.
10-21-2004 22:39:57 | More by SixpointJMH
4/5 rDev 0%
Pours a dark brown with ruby tints...nose is dark cocoa...body is medium to full...tight...flavor profile is big on the sweet milk chocolate...a little hit of coffee grounds...finishes with a little bitter hop hit...has the feel of a Porter in some respects....
An interesting beer..nice character to this...tasty..not an all-time great but well worth trying....enjoyable.
10-18-2004 00:35:50 | More by ZAP
3.6/5 rDev -10%
22 oz. bomber
Very light for a brown ale. Poured a dark rubby color with a loose cafe au lait head. Nose has a deep earthy tone with roasted coffe grind flavor and slight estery sweetness and notes of brown sugar and caramel. Flavor was earthy but had some slight fruity flavors of cherry and figs coupled with a slight hoppy citrus flavor akin to grapefruit. The mouthfeel was slightly bubbly and carbonated, but nothing over the top. This seemed to me a toned down version of the Arogant Bastard. There wasn't as much hops but the malts were similar. Much fruity estery flavoring. Good way to commemerate the 8th Ani.
10-18-2004 00:20:25 | More by GreatPondBrewer
4.13/5 rDev +3.3%
Sweet caramel nose with a nice roast malt note in the sinus. Ruby colored in the glass. Nice airy beige sticky head with good lacing on the glass. Inital taste of smoked oak and roasty malts is smoothed by a coating sweetish tickish base. Slightly dry tongued finish with just enough grassy bitterness to round her out. it is a malt bomb...roasty pleasure.
10-16-2004 02:32:37 | More by frank4sail
3.83/5 rDev -4.3%
Poured a rich amber with a slightly off white head,aromas of earth,nut and a little caramel but pretty faint in that department mainly a big earthiness.Taste is hardcore earthy and nutty I mean like eating raw peanuts strait from the field whoo!A little harsh until it warms to get a little caramel sweetness.A no holds barred brown here alcohol is prevelant thru out,maybe the dryest brown ale I have had to date very big and bold maybe too much.
10-15-2004 23:35:36 | More by oberon
4.1/5 rDev +2.5%
-Head very quickly dissipates into a ring around the rim, bubbly lacing
-Deep brown/amber color
-Strong caramel and coffee
-Little hop aroma
-Burnt, roasted malts, but surprisingly smooth
-Bitterness seems to come from toasted malts not hops
-Caramel flavor comes through just barely for me
-Slightly astringent, peppery, sticks to your mouth
Gives me sort of an old-ale impression. I like it, it's more exciting than your standard brown ale. I'd definitely drink it again.
10-14-2004 23:58:02 | More by dolem98
3.8/5 rDev -5%
22 oz. bottle thanks to mrpicklerelish.
Appearance: A beautiful, crystal clear mahogany. The deep red color of this beer was downright gorgeous. Small tan head always remained in some capacity and left a bit of lacing behind as I drank.
Aroma: Big wafts of spice and coffee. Deeper whiffs revealed toasted malts, chocolate and brown sugar especially as it warmed.
Taste: Up front, a smooth mix of spicy hops mixed with toasted malts, coffee and chocolate, something nutty and then a solid shot of bitterness that remained on my tongue for a while. Sometimes the bitterness outweighed the initial smoothness of flavors. It was very sharp and distracting at times and took away from my enjoyment. All in all, I would've expected a more complex flavor from Stone.
Mouth: Medium to full body with a tight carbonation that creates a nice, smooth mouthfeel:
Drink: Good. Plenty tasty. Not as great as other brown ales I've had but ok stuff.
10-14-2004 11:11:58 | More by oxmasterscream
4/5 rDev 0%
Appearance: Lighter brown, somewhat close to the color of bourbon.
Smell: As my first brown ale, this was an experience. Somewhat sweet, but the color kept making me think of a dark wheat bread.
Taste: As I smelled, somewhat sweet, perhaps a smokey sugar, yet bitter. Again, as I drank this mildly bitter beer, I could not keep images of wheat bread from entering my head.
Mouthfeel: Good. Not too thick, yet not thin in the least.
Drinkability: Pretty darn good. I could drink this beer for a while.
Overall: Good. As I put 4's across the board, Good perfectly describes this beer. I hate to be so bland, but good is an excellent modifier.
10-11-2004 00:13:26 | More by bigchris1313
Stone 8th Anniversary Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 261 ratings.