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Stone 06.06.06 Vertical Epic Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Stone 06.06.06 Vertical Epic AleStone 06.06.06 Vertical Epic Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

307 Reviews
THE BROS
89
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 307
Hads: 478
rAvg: 3.96
pDev: 8.84%
Wants: 83
Gots: 122 | FT: 13
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:
Beer added by: Todd on 06-05-2006

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: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 307 | Hads: 478
Photo of WVbeergeek
4.17/5  rDev +5.3%
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. (764 characters)

Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.17/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The beer poured into the chalice clear dark, make that black, with a brownish tall head which lasted very well to coat the glass.

The aroma was fruity, strongly so as it was poured. Chocolate was present as was a dirty and earthy character. A bit of peppery spice was notable and as the head fell the fruitiness did as well. Some dark fruits were present and their intensity increased as the beer warmed. The fruits were raisins with some characteristics of prunes.

The flavor was earthy with a strong presence of tinny and very lightly spicy hops and yeast. The strongest flavor present was chocolate and that was coupled with dark caramel and some character of raisins and prunes. Spices were present but were mostly muted, pepper was the most prevalent flavor.

The finish was dry with a nice dark fruit and caramel character and peppery hops lasting into the aftertaste without much chocolate presence. The body was medium with a moderate carbonation and a creaminess to the mouthfeel. The warming after consumption was very high and reminded you that this one might have a bit of a punch. A nice Belgian Porter (if there is such a thing).

22 ounce bottle. (1,171 characters)

Photo of RidiculedDisplay
4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Poured into a goblet. Like other reviewers have said, pours very, very dark. I had a bottle of 05.05.05 last year, and don't remember it being nearly as dark in appearance, but that might just be memory fading. Very thin head which quickly dissipates. Very little lacing upon swirling.

Smell: Really good aroma. A very yeasty smell, with a hint of sharp alcohol. Bittersweet chocolate. Cloves. Kiwi.

Taste: A sweet, very drinkable brew. Again, some estery notes, kiwi in particular. Bittersweet chocolate, again. Cloves, some general spices I'm not familiar with (anise?). A little dry upon swallowing. Very little alcohol burn, but it's there. Overall, however, very drinkable, and perhaps slightly less complex or pleasurable than the aroma.

Mouthfeel: Again, a little dry when you swallow, but overall very smooth, very little carbonation, only slighty syrupy.

Drinkability: A great brew. Like most belgian styles I've had from American craft beer makers, not quite a Belgian, but always a very interesting take on the style. Stone does it better than most others, I'd say. (1,101 characters)

Photo of Viggo
4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a hazy brown, thick tan head forms, sticks around, nice lacing. Smell is sweet, toffee, anise, some butter, spices, little bit of alcohol, pretty complex. Taste is sweet and toffeeish up front, anise and chocolate, some yeasty spiciness, alcohol in the finish, more anise. Mouthfeel is medium to light bodied, very well attenuated, low carbonation. Nice, interesting flavour profile, kept me interested. Thanks biegaman!! (428 characters)

Photo of bjohnson
4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a jet black color with a two finger caramel colored head. Big bubbles towards the middle of the head with a smooth milkshake like head towards the side. Excellent retention with sticky thick lacing down the glass. Dark fruit notes with prunes, figs, blackberries, burnt brown sugar, rotten bananas, and spicy malt aromas. Complex and big with nice Belgian phenols.

Belgian phenols from the start with a nice dryness in the finish--slight bitterness also associated with the dryness. Figs and prunes are abundant with a slight citric fruitiness. Licorice notes with slight peppery notes to them. Yeasty and earthy with a nice spicy mouthfeel. Very smooth and quite soft on the palate. Medium to full bodied with a nice soft aftertaste. A damn nice one from Stone. I'm glad that I've got another sitting in the basement. I wonder what this will do in a few years. (870 characters)

Photo of winky13
4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought this at Stone's special 80's growler fill on Sat night. Nice dark color. Almost as dark as the IRS 08 I also bought via growler. Smell: very pleasant dark fruit smell, with spicy belgian notes. Taste: raisin, maybe prune with belgian spice. Noticeable sweetness very nicely balances the light bitterness of hops. Mouthfeel: medium weight, not too highly carbonated. This may be because I drank this a few nights after buying in Escondido. Very drinkable beer that opens up well after warming up. (502 characters)

Photo of jpaltan
4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Quite dark, somewhat opaque. thin head that leaves little residual lacing. smell is nice, with hints of dark fruits and candy. taste is plum and a bit sweet, but really nicely balanced. mouthfeel is silky and smooth. this beer is almost too drinkable. it is rather unfortunate that this isn't in stone's usual line-up as this beer was quite nice. (346 characters)

Photo of ClockworkOrange
4.15/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A 22 ounce bomber bottle poured into my Duvel tulip glass. The ale appears a nearly opaque dark crimson brown color with two fingers of ecru foam. The head lingers for a few minutes before settling down to a thin layer. Nose and flavor consist of rich toasted and caramelized malts, star anise, bittersweet chocolate, spicy Belgian yeast, cocoa dusted raisins, prune notes, pleasantly bitter hops. There is still a bit of alcohol, but it's burn is more than tolerable. A little lighter in body than I was expecting with ample carbonation. Tasty and complex, I'd say this VE is aging nicely. If you have a few bottles, by all means, enjoy one soon. (647 characters)

Photo of scruffwhor
4.14/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep brown with a trace head and no foam lingering. Aroma is a rich toffee malt shake. Hints of light milk chocolate. Taste is a better developed, rich toffee taste. Some toasty brown sugar and creme milk with a little spiciness at the finish. Very smooth brew. Easy to drink for a higher alcohol beer.Went very well with roast beef, mashed potatos, mushroom gravy, and blaukraut. (388 characters)

Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
4.13/5  rDev +4.3%
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. (969 characters)

Photo of BEERchitect
4.13/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Has to be among the most anticipated release of a beer. Every year, this beer offers many suprises. This year's is not different. Large amount of sweetness, tartness, fruitiness, and luster jumps out immediately...and I haven't even poured it into a glass yet. The beer pours a deep, dark, purple, ruby hue and releases a dense brown-ish head that stands the durration perfectly. Decorated with pepery spices and sprinkles. Aromas seem very complex with an abundance of caramelized malt sweetness, and a heavy dosage of every spice known to mankind. Tastes even better. Big on the sweetness, but not overly thick. Spices compliment the belgian tartness very well without distraction. Fruity with all dark, dehydrated fruits from cherries to prunes to licorice to black berries... Alcohols are assertive all along the way, becoming a bit fusal in the end. Almost a caugh syrup flavor and feel. The body is full, rich, and bold. Coats the mouth with a bready, velvety layer that I find pleasant, then cut through with the alcohols and tartness. Expectibly (because of its youth), the beer is a bit harsh on the alcohols and hop character, but is sure to meld in the years to come. In fact, I was surprised the beer did not taste more 'green' than it did. Father time will be very kind to this beer. (1,296 characters)

Photo of Truh
4.13/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Saw the sign of the beast with this one on 6/21/2006. 1 pt. 6 fl. oz. bomber poured twice in an Arrogant Bastard shaker glass.

Very thin initial head, maybe 1/8-inch, that quiets to some wood shavings, largely piled on the edges. Fine sheet of stick as the pour goes further down. Hue is medium to light brown, darker at its core, with not a whole lot of noticeable action happening; fairly quiet. The nose is difficult to determine; some rock candy, caramel, charcoal, sugar cane, and the cathedral vault vacuousness that accompanies Belgian-style ales of this type. Dark fruits invade the tongue, composed of prunes, raisins, some fruity craisins, smoky apple wood (like barbecue chips). A tangy sweetness pulls through at the tail end, slightly sour.

Good stuff. Wonder what it will be like six and a half years from now. (830 characters)

Photo of BillyB
4.12/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Dark brown to black. Almost opaque with a thin tan head.

S- Excellent aromas of dark fruits,roasty malt, cedar, anise and other spices.

T- Excellent balance of deep, rich barley and spicy, floral wheat. Nice hop bitterness rounds out the taste profile. Dark fruits; Raisins, plums.

MF- Medium bodied despite a high gravity. Slight alcohol warmth.

D- Overall a good dark belgian strong or maybe a dubble(?). (422 characters)

Photo of cjacobsen
4.12/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a glass

The beer poured dark. The head was light but stuck around throughout.

The smell was heavy on roasted malt. It wasn't too complex but that is where the smell differed from the taste.

The taste was of roasted malt and some sort of earthy tones. Oak and hints of raison and maybe some chocolate. Its tough to think about the taste of it now and how it would compare the how it tasted back in 2006 when it was fresh off the line.

The mouthfeel was that of a stout and a dark brown ale.

Definitely a drinkable beer and goes great with grilled steak and pork. (598 characters)

Photo of Phatz
4.12/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a cola black with a small head that fades and leaves little lacing.

Smell: Smells to me like Birch beer soda with a splash of red syrup, cherry, licorice, yeast and dark brown sugar (maybe a drop of dark Karyo syrup. Beside the sweet candy aromas there was also a spicy yeast and grain attribute that kept this beer from becoming cloying.

Taste: This beer poke prods and prickles with spicy sugars zippy flavors that dance and spin on the taste buds. Yeasty spices with dark fruits, black licorice, molasses and plenty of acidity keep the mouth very busy.

Mouthfeel: The texture is very fizzy like a cola and spicy with yeast and alcohol.

Drinkability: Fantastically but it is not gentle. This is not a beer for the meek of palate. The acidity and yeasty spicy, the boozy alcohol dry bite, make this a beer for sipping by any definition. Obviously Vertical Epic is designed with the idea of cellaring. I do think this beer will mellow nicely with age.

Hope this is helpful.
Cheers! (1,018 characters)

Photo of Thorpe429
4.12/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Consumed on 12.26.2009.

Poured a very dark brown with a decently-sized head, especially given the age. The smell was of chocolate, Belgian yeast, roasted malt, and hints of dark fruit. The taste is really dominated by the chocolate flavor of the malt, with a bit of roasted characteristics, as well as some lingering Belgian yeast, especially in the aftertaste. Not a bad beer at all, and I look forward to trying it again in 2012. (432 characters)

Photo of kmo1030
4.12/5  rDev +4%
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. (766 characters)

Photo of DoubleJ
4.12/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

With the Vertical Epic series coming to a close, it felt appropriate to to do a small flight of them at Tustin Brewing. The 6-6-06 was the first of the series that I bought, not long after I turned 21, but I eventually sacrificed that bottle at a tasting. Here's my second change, and I made sure not to squander it. On to the beer:

Ink black colored with a short lived head which turns into a few whips of foam. Somehow, the lacing it gives off is quite good. The nose brings the aroma of molasses, dates, grapes, and a strong (yet pleasant) dose of oxidation. Despite a sweet nose, the taste is a yo-yo between sweet and sour, leaning more sour. Was it supposed to be like this at its release back in 2006? But since I'm taking notes of it now, at the end of 2012, I only care about the present state. And it's big fun! Moderately acidic, yet it packs a punch of sourness. Soured white grapes spring to mind, complimented with dates and vague fruitiness. It's medium bodied, with a low level of carbonation.

Better late than never. Gee, did I just type that in my previous review? Even after 6 years of hiding, 06.06.06 is a great ale. (1,140 characters)

Photo of msubulldog25
4.12/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from the 22 oz. bottle to a goblet:

A: Deep brown with tinges of copper/burgundy at the edges. Thin off-white head with a bit of lacing.

S: Heady smell that's dark and toasty, Belgian yeasts, clove, spice, baked bread ... my first sniff reminded me off the baking semolina dough at a favorite local pizzaria. Noticed some alcohol, too. Complex.

T: Not quite as challenging as the smell, but definitely good flavors. Lots of fruit and noticeable alcohol presence. Sweet & malty initially but a more bitter coffee/chocolate-like finish.

M: Creamy but a little clingy with a lingering bitterness. Pretty heavily carbonated

D: A very good beer, one that will improve with time I'm sure. I enjoyed sipping this one but actually didn't finish the whole bottle in one sitting. (791 characters)

Photo of Bighuge
4.12/5  rDev +4%
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. (612 characters)

Photo of wcudwight
4.11/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into my big ass Arrogant Bastard glass I got in the Double Trouble BIF.
Pours a dark mahogany color. Very porter or even stout looking. 1/4" tan head with moderate retention. Sticky, runny lace completely covers the glass with each sip.
Lot's of malt in the nose. Smells sweet and somewhat fruity.
Man this taste like a coffee stout brewed with Belgium yeast. It's great. The forementioned coffee flavor really stands out to me, along with some dark chocolate and brown sugar. The Belgium yeast complements the roasted malt flavors instead of hops. I don't taste much hops in this beer.
Mouthfeel is full bodied and filling.
Scary drinkable. Alcohol is barely noticable and it's a very flavorful beer. Was thinking of trading my other 2 bottles but I now believe I will keep them.
This is a style that I'm exploring and just beginning to enjoy so I don't know if it's spot on for the style or not. (910 characters)

Photo of johnnnniee
4.11/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I was fortunate to try this last night at an epic tasting held by my good friend Mike, thanks for the opportunity MrBarleywine!
Pours a slightly hazy deep garnet color with a smallish off white head that dissipates fairly quickly. The aroma is sweet caramel, chocolate, roast and cinnamon with a light woody aroma.The flavor follows the aroma quite well. Sweet and sugary with caramel, chocolate, and cocoa with hints of spice and fruit. The finish is fairly dry, but leaves a long lingering chocolate and roast bite on the palette. Medium to light body with a moderate level of carbonation and a sweet mouthfeel. I liked this one quite a bit. (644 characters)

Photo of Iguana
4.1/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearence - Poured a dark brown/ruby with a medium sized head. Looks pretty good thusfar.

Smell - I get toasted brown sugar, hints of banana, and a bit of ripened fruit. Quite pleasent.

Taste - Interesting, I am getting toasted brown sugar again, but a nice hop presence in the background adding some bitterness. Rather unique.

Mouthfeel - Pretty good, bit of carbonation, slight bitter aftertaste, and a nice lingering sweetness.

Drinkability - Pretty tasty beer, not the best I have had of the style, but quite enjoyable nonetheless. This beer is at least worth a try, and worth getting and putting a few away for a couple years. (644 characters)

Photo of jaasen64
4.1/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Lord Hobo's Vertical Epic Event in Boston. Part of the Flight "B" (06, 07, 08). 5oz serving in a flight glass.

A- Dark cherry reddish brown slightly translucent around the edges with about a quarter of a finger of creamy beige light mocha head with decent retention (definitely the best head out of the series so far).

S- Cedar, some light peppery spices, chocolate, cocoa, some very light dark fruits, fairly aromatic.

T- Dark chocolate, cedar, some light spicey pepper (nowhere near as much spice as the 03), finishes with a dark chocolate cocoa aftertaste that lingers. Cedar definitely adds a hint of roastiness and blends well with the cocoa.

M- Medium bodied, low carbonation, very smooth, easy drinking.

O- This was my favorite beer of the series up to this point. There was nice complexity and the beer held up very well with age. I loved the mix between the roastiness, chocolate, cocoa, and cedar aspects of the beer. All held up nicely and contributed a nice quality to the beer. (1,006 characters)

Photo of sleazo
4.1/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Opened this one after 6 months in the fridge

Poured a dark black, opague. Head diminished quickly. Smells strongly of roasted malts, mixed with some hops. Taste, dried fruit, chocolate/coffee with a hop bckground. Finishes up with an alcohol heat and some chalk. This is a sipper. A nice, nice beer (299 characters)

Stone 06.06.06 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 307 ratings.