Stone 06.06.06 Vertical Epic Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

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Stone 06.06.06 Vertical Epic AleStone 06.06.06 Vertical Epic Ale

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BA SCORE
89
very good

469 Ratings
THE BROS
88
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 469
Reviews: 304
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 11.31%
Wants: 85
Gots: 115 | FT: 9
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  8.66% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

As with any good epic, herein lies the promise of larger-than-life experiences, heroics, and twists and turns as the adventure unfolds. This bottle conditioned ale is chapter five, and is specifically designed to be aged until sometime after December 12th, 2012. Provided you can wait that long. At that time, enjoy it in a "vertical" tasting along with its ten Stone Vertical Epic Ale brethren. Each on unique to its year of release. Each with its own "twist & turn" in the plot line. Each one release one year, one month and one day from the previous year’s edition.

In this year’s edition, you’ll notice a deep, rich aroma of toasty malts, anise, Belgian yeast spiciness, and a hint of cedar. The toasty, dark and roasty malt flavors combine with a soft palate - courtesy of specialty dark wheat and barley malts. The body is fairly light for a beer with such a high gravity. There is a pleasant, lingering bitterness, so you know it’s part of the Stone family. This ale was brewed with a specialty Belgian yeast that we’re really liking here at Stone...it’s the same one we used for brewing the Stone 03.03.03 Vertical Epic Ale. And as with the Stone 05.05.05 Vertical Epic Ale, all the spicy, deep, and wonderfully funky aromas and flavor characteristics in this beer come as a result of nothing more than malt, hops, water and yeast!

(Beer added by: Todd on 06-05-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 469 | Reviews: 304 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of WVbeergeek
4.15/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appears a dark cola definitely brown in nature although could border a black tone on the color spectrum tan head forms and leaves fine specks of lacing scattered around my chalice. Aroma has anise upfront just like my Italian grandma's cookies dark powdered cocoa and full herbal grassy notes some what of a woody toasty nut finish interesting. Flavor contains chocolate richness some doughy bread and coffee notes raisins tart apples alcohol finish with more of that signature anise black licorice note. Mouthfeel is creamy soothing alcohol burn medium body soft carbonation glides on palate. Drinkability is definitely intriguing and challenging to the senses some age would do this well as it was designed for it, I'm sure I'll have at least a few more bottles.

Photo of neonbrown82
3.6/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is interesting. So far I haven't been too impressed with any of the Vertical Epic series. I don't know if it's because I haven't had enough bottles to age, or if it's just not my thing. Too bad. I really want to like it more, because I love Stone, but I can't.

Pours to a dark reddish brown color with a thin tan head that recedes to nothing. No lacing.

The smell is of sugary barley malt. Some dark fruity esters. A very subtle noble hop aroma.

Has a dark, almost roasty malt flavor. Sweet with a decent backing bitterness. None of the floral hop flavor from the nose. Almost seems to taste like tannin, which I suppose is my main gripe about it.

Maybe a good 6 years of age would do something about that? I'll probably never know. I have one bottle left, and it'll more than likely end up as trade fodder.

Photo of kmo1030
4.1/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

deep, dark rich looking brown with thick tan head that fades to a ring with film.
the smell contains chocolate covered banana, clove, licorice, spicy alcohol, prune, rootbeer, cigar, and candied fruit... in no particular order. very complex, and enticing.
the taste is sweet and very similar to the aroma, with a little bit of bitterness towards the back. there is a little bit of heat at the finish, which is almost necessary to contrast to the sweetness
the mouthfeel is pretty light considering the taste. with a mellow relatively delicate carbonation.
just like the last couple years of VEs, this one also tastes young and to me will obviously benefit from a couple years under it's belt. certainly more than worth a taste now though, it's a good beer as is.

Photo of
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark brown in color, with ruby highlights when I held it up to the light. Almost opaque. Modest tan head hung around briefly after the pour. "Typical" Belgian aroma, some barnyard, some sugar/sweet aromas, spice (clove?). Very appealing and it improved as it warmed. Slight metallic and alcohol notes as well. Flavor was quite complex, toast/coffee hints at start, a raisin/grape taste in the center with some alcohol/medicinal bits thrown in, and a finish of hop bittering (fairly mild). Finally, I think I picked up licorice in the aftertaste. Mouthfeel was medium body, low carb, some alcohol warming and a little bit of diacetyl like slickness. I found this to be very drinkable, moreso the warmer it go. I bought a good bit to cellar and am interested in how that works out.

Photo of pjwilson
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Seen for 4 dollars, which i think is a hook-up so I purchased two. If I really like this, I will go back for more. The 2nd bottle won't be opened for 6 months to a year.

appearance: poured into a carnival cruise ship coctail glass tulip shaped thingy. looked pretty good for a beligan style beer. and it does. huge insane head, staying for 5 mins, and forming amazing looking lace. damn, i don't know how much the glass is to blame, think a skinny duvel glass. the beer itself is a solid dark black. no light. i'm very into it.

smell: hints of chocolate, licorice, mild yeast, more chocolate. so far, very different from a standard beligian dark, as much a strong porter as that. very promising, quite complex and nice.

taste: damn that's tasty. not nearly as belgian tasting as I was expecting, more belgian inspired. damn, this is a unique brew. First taste is pure liqorice. I find the beer quite dry, not sweet as some reviewers mentioned. None of the sweetness of the smell. It's got a pretty strong bitterness, (this is stone), which I suppose is almost too strong right now. this will mellow out with age for sure, although i'm digging this now. no booze to be found. the aftertaste brings out some coffee and chocolate. fucking nice.

mouthfeel: nice and light, making for a good drinking time. some sugar was used, making for a very light mouthfeel.

drinkability: i'm enjoying sip after sip. uh, 4 bucks a bottle, i'm gonna go get at least 3 to 4 more, this is seriously very,very good. this "one off release" blows 9 out of 10 west coast attempts at a dark beligian style out the water. honenstly, to me it's more of a porter mixed with dark beligian, but it is truly one of a kind.

verdict: snag up several bottles now.

Photo of Estarrio
3.93/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a midnight black with a medium coffee tinted head. Not much retention apart from the lacing around the rim.

The aroma is of sweet malt with some very subltle spices.

Full bodied, thick consistency, well carbonated.

Sweet coffee, smoke, fruit and roasted malt flavors. There is a slight bubblegum aftertaste. The high alchohol percentage is nicely masked. There are some hints of hop but not enough to counteract the sweetness for my taste.

Photo of mcarroll10177
2.85/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 5 | overall: 2

poured from the 22 oz bombering into an imperial pint glass

A- a very beautiful beer, dark burgandy almost black with a big tan head that left lots of lacing on the glass with each sip

S- some sweet notes with some malt a good smell but not to overwelming

T- strong and bitter, not a great taste with some chocolate sweet undertones

M- sticks in your mouth and is a bit on the thick side spot on as far as I am concerned

D- not an every day drinker by any scence of the imagination and not wonderful tasting like a big heavy sipping beer.

Notes- the best way I can sum up this beer is that it is too raw. It has potential but needs some definate aging to balance out the flavors. This may beer an exceptional beer in the future, but for right now the favors have not melded together. Give it a few years of aging.

Photo of BeerRun13
3.88/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Ahhhh. My 100th review. What a fitting way to celebrate it.

06.06.06 pours into my goblet a very clear yet dark ruby/brown color. A small slightly tan head gives off some good lace.
Aroma contains a strong candi sugar presence, along with a nice spicy clove like element.
Candi sugar in the flavor. A touch of dark maybe even roasted malts. A banana and clove flavor shows up in in the back of the mouth. Maybe a little chocolate in there as well.
Full bodied. A creamy yet syrup like texture. A bit of bitterness in the back of the mouth.
Pretty good beer, but maybe not super drinkable. I look forward to seeing this one age.

Photo of Georgiabeer
3.8/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A good beer, if somewhat unusual, but nothing really that special.

The beer pours dark, thick and syrupy with almost no head.

The smell is very light- surprisingly so with just an aroma of roasted barley.

The taste is mostly Licorice- both its peculiar bitterness and its sweetness is present here. Some caramel flavors and hop bitterness also comes through as well as a slight bit of vanilla on the finish.

The mouthfeel is very thick and viscous, but not sticky.

Pretty drinkable, and lighter than one might think given the brewery and style.

Photo of xymyl
4.47/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Color: Looks deep copper as it pours but pretty close to black in the glass, nice light brown head that clears away pretty quickly.

Aroma: Milky, floral, chocolatey, Coffeeish, Earthy & Spicey, Etc... It just keeps going.

Taste: Everything that the aroma indicates floods in along with an intense and dense fruitiness, then nuttiness then a slight dry bitterness. For me, it is the perfect balance of fruit and earth. I'm sure I'll pick up much more the next time I try it. There's so much going on here you can just pick your favorite flavors in advance and they are likely to be here.

Body: Medium

Other comments: It's sort of a Belgian stout. I've been waiting for this one since they started this series and I am not disappointed in the least. This is exactly my type of beer. Too bad I only bought 1 case. I hope I can get out into the civilized world and get more before it's all gone. Either way, I'll have a few bottles left for the big vertical tasting. This is by far the best VE in my opinion. It will be great in about 3 years. Am I gushing? Sorry, at least I can edit it later if I want to.

Photo of EStreet20
3.7/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 ounce bottle poured into a alarge snifter.

A - Pours the color of color with a touch of a red hint when held up to the light. A lasting two finger tan head crowns the brew.

S - A yeasty aroma with some roasty smells and a hint of spice in there. Nice but a lot fainter than I was expecting.

T - A roasty flavor that gives way to some spicy tastes and a yeasty, woody finish. A pretty good flavor overall.

M - A medium bodied brew that coats the mouth nicely.

D - Not bad for a few sips but the roastiness combined witht he woody flavor is a bit much.

Photo of jaluria
4.53/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Yet another exceptional brew from Stone. I wanted to age this for a few months, but didn't have the patience.

Poured a dark brown color with subtle crimson & ruby colored hues simmering at the bottom of my goblet. A soft, light brown colored head developed and dissipated quickly leaving just a tiny cushion of foam and considerable lacing. Aromas of figs, plums, dates, alcohol, toasted bread, and burnt sugar seemed to come out; very nice. The flavors were right on with juicy fruit flavors mixing effortlessly with the sweet malt backbone. Dried fruits flavors seemed to lead into a candy-like finish that was both semi-sweet and bitter. A touch of hops added depth and balance. Smooth, rich, and slightly creamy, this beer was easy to sip. A great example of the style from one of the best breweries around. I can't even imagine how this will taste after a few months/years!

Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
4.18/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured an oil-black with dark brown hues in direct light. 2" mocha brown head that dissipated to a thin amount of lacing around the edge. Very Imperial stout looking.

Smells of very sweet malt, herbal earthiness, slight roasted coffee scent. The Belgian yeast really permeates.Not to Overly aromatic IMO.

Much like a hearty stout with herbal and hoppy bites. The "twists and turns" it promises on the bottles painted lable is totally correct IMO. Tasting Dark coffee(stout like) then a Dry hop bite (AIPA like) THEN...the yeast brings on the Belgian Abby-ish spices.

This is a dark brew, that is light body, the legs are reduced to mear thin lacing within minutes, hence a thick and substantial feel but dry and rather light on the palate for such a complex brew. Very Interesting! and the 8.66% ABV is very well hidden.

This Brew is a true Gender...I mean..."taste bender". Displaying many different effects, taking on the taste's of at least three styles.

Photo of rhoadsrage
3.9/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a tulip glass)
Drank on 3/31/13
A- This beer has a jet black body with a faint light of dark brown glowing at the base of the glass. There is a sticky light beige head that is made mostly of bubbles

S- The abbey yeast ester character blends with a roasted black malt aroma which turns into a brewer’s licorice and coffee quality in the finish.

T- The mellow licorice flavor blends with a nougat and abbey yeast taste with some prune and tootsie roll flavor underneath. There is a salty sweaty taste in the finish that lead to a bitter toffee and slightly inky flavor. The aftertaste has a slight smoky bitterness that lingers.

M- The medium mouthfeel has a slight slippery texture and no real alcohol heat.

O- The off flavors and smoky note don’t blend to well with the licorice but the soft yeasty profile is nice but buried a bit.

Drank 7/17/2006
(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer has a dark black body with a thick spongy head of light tan foam. No sign of bubbles in that dense body.

S- This beer has a nice perfume sweet aroma with a yeasty brown sugar hint that is very nice.

T- The taste of sweet bubblegum is followed by a sweet dark toasted malt flavor with some nice caramel notes. The finish is a big bitter hop flavor that is a surprising punch at the end of this beer. There is not a lot of complexity in the malt flavors the but the bubblegum flavor has nice subtle complexities of perfume, yeast, and faint white sugar.

M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with a very soft carbonation fizz that keeps the finish light and adds more punch to the hops. No alcohol heat in the finish.

D-The smooth malty flavors have nice Abby ale qualities but the big hop punch in the finish really seems out of place. The fading trend of fusion fare offers many dishes that clash while a few of them are really nice. This fusion beer is one of those that clashes, however when I try this beer in 2013 I think it will be very tasty.

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.38/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Being the Devil's ale, or even just that of the Roman Emperor Nero Claudius Caesar (in reference to 6-6-6), this isn't really that scary. In fact, it's kind of sweet.

It pours a very dark, almost-black mahogany body beneath a full-sized head of dark-tan foam. The retention could be a bit better, and the lacing as well, but it still holds pretty well and leaves some nice lacing about the glass.

The nose is yeasty with lots of banana and clove. Brown sugar and mild malt appear as well. Only a touch of alcohol appears to be present.

The flavor is similar to the aroma, with some added chocolate malt that helps to ground it; a nip of spicy/floral hops; some peppery yeastiness; and a touch of warming alcohol.

It's smooth and lightly creamy in the mouth with a medium-full body and moderate carbonation.

The flavor mimics the aroma, but with a touch less more banana and more brown sugar.

Very nice! I think this might be the best of the Vertical Epic Series that I've tried so far.

Photo of cproioi
3.7/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Served from a 22oz Bomber.

A: A dark amber color with a tan color head that reduced at a decent pace that left decent lacing. The carbonation was very apparent in this beer if one could look through the darkness of the beer.

S: Smelt of Anise, Coffee and smoke. A rather nice mixture of both. One did not over power the other one.

T: Had a peppery taste to it. Along with the sweetness brought in by the Belgian yeast. Had almost a taste of Stone's Russian Imperial Stout, with their Smoked Porter and a Belgian ale. It was rather good.

M: Had a very warming note to it. It was so warming that it actually left me with a little sweat on my brow. Would of be rather nice on a cold day.

D: Very slow drinking beer. Had to take a break in the middle of the bomber slow down. However, I will get it again to cellar.

Photo of Bighuge
4.1/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark mahogany. Thin cramy light brown head. Lacing is moderate and comes in rings. A nose with some similar traits to a good dunkelweizen. Dark malts. A little molasses. Clove and banana. But ALSO, some of that nice belgian yeastiness. Doughy and bready. I like the nose. Interesting flavor up front. Dry cedar like woodiness. A little yeastiness in the background. A subtle acrid "barrel-like" tannic bite. Bitterness is present. Almost like a tobacco leaf bitterness. The body is light-medium or so. Lightly carbonated. Alcohol is way in the background. But a bitterness lingers. Not offensively....just there.

Photo of Brent
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A rather tame Belgian Strong Dark, considering it comes from Stone, and I felt this was ready to drink fresh. In fact, I have to wonder if it has enough density to hold up well to age. Poured a dark chestut, with nice, fruity yeast notes in the aroma. Flavor was true to the Belgian style, with some candy sugar and slightly funky yeast flavors. Perhaps just a bit more hopping than a native Belgian strong dark, but a nice Stone trademark spin.

Photo of LvilleIPA
3.98/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured out of the 22oz'er into my favorite St. Bernardus chalice.

Sets up nice, and smells fantastic. The head was a deep tan that formed a thin rim near the top of the glass before disappearing rather quickly. The "body" is a deep brown, almost black.

The mouthful reminds me of a Belgian Dubbel (actually, I may be off, but this mostly reminds me of a Maredsous 8).

Stone made a great run at crafting a Belgian Dark Ale here. It's mouthful dances with dried fruits and toffee before drying out my mouth completely. Leaves a dry/fruity/smokey/spicy flavor on the palate. You can tell there's alcohol there, but it's not overwhelmingly powerful (considering it's a 8.66%).

I think this will hold up well until Stone's suggested drinking date of 12-12-12.

Definitely a great beer to drink now as well. Don't be afraid to drink it now and save some for later.

Photo of Billolick
4.63/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Large, typical Stone bottle, pours dark, ruddy brown, fine dark tan head, robust figgy, raisin, dark chocolate nose. Leaving scattered lacing and pleanty of intricate sheeting. Bold and flavorful, full bodied, complex heady brew. Notes of more smokey dark chocolate, raisins, sweet malts. This is ungodly smooth and long lasting on the taste buds. This is yet another spot on, home run for Stone. I'll try to age a few of these but it wont be easy, cuz this is drinking so well right now. World class and Stone all the way.

Photo of Dogbrick
4.33/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pretty dark brown color with ruby around the edges. Thick light beige head with very good retention, and a decent sheet of lacing. Aroma of toasted malt, spices and yeast. There is also a touch of peppery alcohol in the nose. Medium, spicy body with malt, clove and grassy hops flavors. Bittersweet finish of sweet malt and spicy hops. Pretty enjoyable as is, and I wonder what it will taste like in 6 years.

Photo of Gusler
4.43/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Upon its release from the 22-ounce brown bottle the beer sets a deep incarnadine color, the head behemothic in size, light tan in color and semi-creamy in texture, the lace forms a thick and sticky sheet to hide the glass. Nose has a deep, rich malt sweetness, hints of aromatic spices dominate after resting a bit, a joy to this old schnozzle, start is sweet with a delightful grain presence, top is moderate in feel to the palate. Finish has a spiny acidity, the hops and spice quite flavorful, dry and long lasting after taste. One of the better verticals from Stone, and one that will age nicely.

Photo of neenerzig
4.28/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

My first in the Vertical Epic Series. This beer pours a clear, very dark amber brown color with a tan head about an inch thick that shinks in size considerably shortly after being poured that stays with you until the last sip and also leaves a nice coating of lacing on the way down. Smell is of clove and roasted coffee with some fruity aromas such as plums, apples, bannanas, and maybe even a bit of peach. A sweet and sort of roasted coffee like taste upfront with all the characteristics mentioned for the smell also present in the taste, followed by a sort of hoppy, bitter and slightly dry aftertaste. I felt a warming sensation begin after a few sips. A thick full bodied, smooth and creamy mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. The characteristics of this beer's taste and texture sort of remind me of rootbeer in a way. This beer has characteristics of Stone's Smoked Porter, IPA, and Imperial Stout all in one. This is quite an exquisite beer indeed. I can only imagine how good it will be in 2012. Good thing I have a bottle in storage so I can find out. Another winner from Stone! Go pick this up while you can before it is gone! Get 2 bottles if you can. One for now and one for 2012!

Eric

Photo of shroompod
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up 13 of these and will try to pick up more next year.

Poured half a bomber into a pint glass. Thick tan head seems to hold up well. This beer is dark with no light penetrating.

Smell has some anise, clove , and sweet honey notes.

Taste almost has a bubble gum spearmint flavor up front. It gets rounded out by some nice hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel is thick , a little sweet, good carbonation.

Drinkabilty is OK, and I imagine will improve in time. I'm curious to see how this one ages throughout the "EPIC"

Photo of Padron4KM
3.7/5  rDev -7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown, with a thin head despite fizzy carbonation.

Aroma is ultra fruity, overripe bananas dominate.
Some caramel in there too, along with a few wisps of cedar. Those only come out after you let the brew sit for a bit, once you agitate it again the fruit powers back.

First sip was all clove.
When I was a kid I tried making my own clove cigarettes with crushed cloves from my moms kitchen. This kind of reminded me of that, but in a good way. Smokey, clove, tobacco, sweet and spice.
As it warmed, notes of banana crept in.

Medium body, with a lengthy dry woody finish. Will be interesting to see how this develops.

Stone 06.06.06 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 469 ratings.