Stone 05.05.05 Vertical Epic Ale - Stone Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 306 | Reviews: 214 | Display Reviews Only:
2.45/5 rDev -37.3%
Pours a hazy, dark chestnut brown color with a half finger beige head that immediately fizzles away into a thin ring. No lacing to speak of.
Slightly spicy, leathery malt aroma that makes it seems more like a barley wine than anything else at this stage. Earthy malts with hints of leather, toffee, subtle dark fruit and lots of alcohol. Faint piney nag grassy hops provide somewhat of an herbal character that's followed by pepper anise and licorice. Not very impressive.
Fuller bodied than expecting and thankfully more interesting than the aroma suggests. Decent balance of dark malt, earthy hops and zesty spice. None of the flavors have seemed to have held up very well, however, with somewhat stale and faded character. The malt profile stands out more than in the nose but it is earthy and leathery like a barley wine and lacking in sweetness and roast. Kind of watered down as well with faded spicy, grassy hop flavor. Slightly earthy and resinous complimented by a peppery spice presence that gives off some clove and anise. As with most of the beers inths series, this beer which was interesting upon release is kind if a faded mess at this point. I wish I would have opened it few years ago.
12-24-2012 06:30:57 | More by corby112
2.55/5 rDev -34.8%
22 oz. bottle served in a CCB snifter.
A: Pours a dark plum color with some ruby highlights around the edges. An offwhite head forms on the pour and recedes to a thin ring. Some splotchy lace is left down the glass.
S: Grainy malt bills, some light rice cake with some wet paper. This one did not age all that well.
T: More of the same. A ton of cardboard, rice cake, and a little cocoa. Sweet cereal malts. The oxidation has really taken this one over.
M: Medium bodied with a medium carbonation level. Wet paper finish.
O: All the bottles had been stored the same so I don't know this was a product of a poorly sealed cap, or the beer wasn't strong enough from the onset to hold onto an semblance of the original flavor profile.
02-13-2013 02:19:28 | More by Treebs
2.64/5 rDev -32.5%
Consumed on January 20th, 2013 at a private Vertical Epic tasting.
Beer pours a murky, nearly-opaque medium brown. No head.
Aroma is sweet: primarily molasses.
Flavor is slightly oxidized. Molasses/brown sugar are strong components on the palate with nothing else much notable other than a mild peppery finish.
Mouthfeel is borderline thin/watery and still.
My memory tells me this one was far, far better fresh.
01-21-2013 19:19:23 | More by charlzm
2.68/5 rDev -31.5%
strikes a deep red, iced coffee pose in my cup. thin wispy belgian style foaming process in effect. some floating islands of bubble lie in wait on the beer's surface.
smell on this one is strong... sweet malt with a slight tinge.. bretty sourness in the nose as well. as the label says it lacks spice but bears some heavy beery scents.
taste is chocolatey with malts, raisins and plums. i am struck by an alcohol fist that is wholly unwelcome for 8.5%. too fresh is what they tell me. by 2012, this beer will benefit from further sweetness, complexity and mellowness (much-needed). ill try one again in a year or two. a noble work in progress for sure.
oh, and where does the bitterness come from? the alcohol? an undigested malt ingredient? powerful. hmm. what am i talking about?
on second thought, this should be referred to as an empty belgian base beer.. a beer mixer! my recommendation, improv! throw some kriek in there.. maybe a little bit of witbier. who the hell knows. have fun. drink stone.
dont hate my low scores, ill edit them in a year or seven.
05-17-2005 22:45:02 | More by goodbyeohio
2.85/5 rDev -27.1%
On tap at Church Key today. I haven't had this before, but I can say with certainty that this hasn't aged well.
Brilliant ruby red with a dense, light brown head with great retention and lacing, this looks great. It smells great too. Despite being rather sweet with a rather noticeable caramel and toffee character without much yeast, this is enjoyable. Brandy, fruity oxidation is present. The palate really is a disappointment. Cardboard and fruity oxidation with some fruit and some caramel and chocolate dominate. The finish is sweet, rather strongly cardboard-like and rather unpleasant. Medium in body and rather over-carbonated, the poor finish is also to this beer's detriment. The finish has flavors of brandy, fruit, caramel and cardboard. Not particularly enjoyable, this.
10-05-2010 01:12:22 | More by DefenCorps
2.88/5 rDev -26.3%
So this is the only Vertical Epic I ever got...I was going to try and get them all at one point, but you can see three years later, I haven't even gotten the two newer ones. So I'm gonna drink it now.
Dark brown, coffee color, light barely makes it through, with a rich tan head with large bubbles. I don't really get a lot of smell to this at all. Maybe a little barley smell...but it's really pretty bland.
It is a fairly weak taste that takes, what it does have is not that remarkable. Has a dark, bitter flavor to it in the aftertaste, like the char on grilled meat. A little estery taste comes out after awhile, as does some vanilla like flavor reminding me of a good cigar. It is just too weak a flavor for me to go crazy for.
Huge amounts of alcoholic warming in this one. I think it's my favorite part. Has a smooth, medium to full mouthfeel to it as well.
Eh, it's not bad, but I'd probably rather throw down a dollar on some SNPA than go out of my way to get another bottle of this.
04-28-2007 02:15:55 | More by cracgor
2.9/5 rDev -25.8%
Mahogany body and deep ruby accents with creamy off-white head. Rich, fruity aroma - curant, cherry and chocolate. Earthy start, bitter chocolate with bitter finish and a little metalic tinge. Low med carboantion with medium light body.
A beautiful looking beer that has a very appetizing aroma, but its flavor doesn't meet expectations. I applaud Stone's boldness, but this beer needs a little more finess. Maybe it needs a little time in the cellar, but now it is too thin, too bitter and a bit astringent.
06-02-2005 01:25:29 | More by frazbri
2.91/5 rDev -25.6%
Don't even remember where I got this one - probably Discount Liquor or something. Served in a tulip.
A - Tan-brown foam settles to a thick collar, wisps, and minimal lacing. Dark and hazy amber-brown body.
S - Just a vague sweetness, with perhaps a touch of chocolate amid the fruity oxidation and caramel flavors.
T - The taste is worse - there's a note of dishwater and cardboard among the standard 'old beer' caramel, honey, and fruitiness combo. I don't get any of the advertised flavors from the bottle - it's all just very muddled.
M - Chewy texture, lower carbonation, smooth, medium body, and no alcohol.
D - Boring. The taste is kind of unpleasant and the rest of the beer is just old and faded. Probably my least favorite so far.
03-06-2013 04:11:29 | More by MasterSki
2.95/5 rDev -24.6%
Bottle: Poured a black color ale with a huge foamy dirty beige head with average retention. Aroma is quite hoppy which was kind of surprising for a Belgian Ale but then again Im starting to get use to different with beers from Stone. Taste is a mix between roasted malt, caramel with a big heavy dose of citrus hops at the end that IMHO dont mix very well with this beer. Body is above average and alcohol is not discernable. Overall, I guess I have a hard time with the heavy dose of hops in a Belgian Ale which is why this is not something I will seek in the future.
01-23-2006 18:10:38 | More by Phyl21ca
2.95/5 rDev -24.6%
What a dissapointment. I was so looking forward to cellaring a bunch of these until 2012. Unfortunately I'm not too optimistic. Virtuallly zero head, though good lacing. Body was clear with an anlmost black color. Not much in the way of aroma. Mostly raisin and dark cherry. Very sweet flavor with a very long finish. Maybe a bit of coffee. Texture was watery and flat carbonation. I was unimpressed. It's not very good now so I don't see how it will get any better.
07-02-2007 12:40:53 | More by doubleipa
3.03/5 rDev -22.5%
22oz. bottle poured into a taster. Thanks to Chris for sharing!
(A)- Pours a murky and dark mahogany color. Minimal tan froth and lacing.
(S)- Again, plenty of oxidized leather and prune in this. Subtle bits of cocoa on the backend.
(T)- Like the smell, plenty of raisin/prune with leathered oxidation. Distinct yeasty bitter cocoa shows as it warms.
(M)- A mellow carbonation level. All together kind of muddled together with obvious oxidation.
(O)- Like the 03 & 04, this one is definitely showing its age.
Original review from Jan, 2011:
(A)- Pours a very dark brown, almost black color. Produced some off-white to tan colored foam that dissipated quickly.
(S)- Very rich. Lots of raisin and prune aromas. Very rich actually. Hints at plums as it warmed up.
(T)- Similar to the smell. A big burst of cocoa up front that blends into the raisin and prune/plum aspect from the smell. Very rich, but restrained at the same time.
(M)- A decent carbonation level that might start showing decline from aging. Smooth, yet rich as well with alot of dark fruits and cocoa.
(D)- An interesting beer considering the style and age on this. Smooth and rich with still some life left in it. If stored ideally for the next two years, this should still be solid for the vertical in 2012.
03-12-2013 15:53:25 | More by sweemzander
3.03/5 rDev -22.5%
On-tap at Churchkey
05.05.05 pours out a red-brown color with a small, light brown head. The head both lasts and laces well. It smells of booze and malt with some really dark fruits. It's almost wine-like. The taste is all dark malt that's very roasty on the backend. The dark fruits are there, but aren't that great. Really disjointed with a bad aftertaste Medium body, but the bad aftertaste kills any drinkability. Again, as has been the case with these 7-9 year old Vertical Epics, it's too old.
01-06-2013 23:11:00 | More by russwbeck
3.08/5 rDev -21.2%
Thanks for sharing this, Mike!
The beer pours a murky dark amber color without much of a head. There is a definite oxidation to the aroma. Lots of cardboard with the stale sugar and toffee notes. A bit of fruit, maybe some chocolate. The flavor is fairly boring, mostly due to the oxidation. Just sort of sweet and muddled with a bit of cardboard to it. Might be some dark fruit notes and yeast in there.
01-24-2012 03:27:54 | More by womencantsail
3.15/5 rDev -19.4%
I was looking forward to trying this one as I expected it to be drinking rather well at this time. It poured a deep amber color and smelled of toffee. The taste was a bit disappointing though as it had a bit of a metallic character to go along with the toffee that I was looking forward to. Not sure if the bottle had been compromised so I'd like to try it again sometime soon.
06-04-2008 13:09:30 | More by dill
3.2/5 rDev -18.2%
dark mahogany brown with reddish undertones, pours with a small white head.
aroma is sweet malt, chocolate covered cherries, eisbock like
taste is malty, chocolate, hop bitterness, the right amount of carbonation for the style
I can see this beer turning very sherry like at the end of the aging period
01-25-2006 19:40:00 | More by kennyo
Stone 05.05.05 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 306 ratings.