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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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

462 Ratings
THE BROS
88
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 462
Reviews: 303
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 11.56%
Wants: 86
Gots: 114 | 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: 462 | Reviews: 303 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of axeman9182
4.03/5  rDev +1.3%

22oz bottle thanks to one of my trading partners. Opened in celebration of grabbing some 10.10.10 and poured into my Duvel tulip.

The beer pours black; not as soul crushingly black as an RIS but there's no light coming through even when backlit. The nose is very interesting, roasted but not especially chocolaty or coffee in nature. There's also the anise and cedar promised on the bottle, as well as some more murky herbal/spiciness. Honestly, not much to add about the flavor that the nose doesn't cover. Every facet of the aroma shines through and helps craft a very tasty beer, even four plus years later. This beer reminds me of New Belgium's 1554 in that it seems to be a cross between a Belgian strong dark ale and a stout. Very solid body, nice and creamy and I would say surprisingly light if I hadn't been warned by Stone beforehand. Carbonation could stand to be a little more expressive, it seemed a tad dull. Four years later the 06 Vertical epic drinks pretty smoothly, and is a very good beer, but just doesn't make me want to call it "world class" or a revelatory drinking experience. Still, another great beer from Stone.

axeman9182, Oct 14, 2010
Photo of meathookjones
3.58/5  rDev -10.1%

Good sized light brown head over the dark brown body. Sweet dark fruits and caramel with a nice backing of spices. Seemed a bit overly sweet, also some alcohol came out. Sweet chocolate and dark fruits. Lightly bitter before a dry spicy sweet finish with notes of fruits and alcohol. Seemed a bit mild overall. Pretty thick body and smooth. Good enough drinkability but the flavor didn’t grab me enough to keep me sipping consistently. It got a little boring half way through.

meathookjones, Aug 17, 2006
Photo of ommegangpbr
4.03/5  rDev +1.3%

Decided to crack open this here puppy for no particular reason.
The pour is nothing special looking but nothing off putting. Very little in the way of head, foam or lacing occurs; that which does is white to offwhite in color.
The scents are pleasant but weak. I tend to expect more bold and striking aromas for this style. Even when on the warmer side the odors are muted. I can pick up some caramelized malts and some dark fruit scents; mostly dark raisins. Just a hint of phenols in there.
Flavors are much more pronounced and well developed. Pretty authentically Belgian in flavor profile except lacking a bit of distinctive yeast presence. Deep, dark fermented fruit flavors with raisin and dark cherry being the strongest. Some bitterness either from toasted malts, or hops, or both. Sweetened coffee things are going on, maybe with a splash of grenadine. Some cola-like notes linger here and there in the quality of the sweetness. The bitterness does well to balance out those components.
The feel on the palate has just the right combination of carbonation and smoothness for me. The bubbles keep some of the cloying away that makes way for a soft, pleasurable finish.
Very tasty stuff. I kinda wish Stone produced something like this in a regular basis. or maybe even a seasonal one.... something between their Smoked Porter and their Russian Imperial stout.
Good sauce and tasty juice. Fans of big, Belgian dark ales are likely to enjoy.

ommegangpbr, Apr 27, 2008
Photo of bjohnson
4.13/5  rDev +3.8%

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.

bjohnson, Apr 27, 2007
Photo of kingmaker
4/5  rDev +0.5%

kingmaker, Aug 26, 2014
Photo of mithrascruor
4.43/5  rDev +11.3%

22 oz. bottle poured into a chalice.

Really excited to have got this one; somehow missed out when it was released and have despaired ever since.

Appearance: Pours a dark reddish brown color. Can't see through it, but at the edges it appears clear. Minimal off-white head turns to a thin wispy film really quick.

Smell: Nice roasted malt aroma with hints of dark caramel or toffee. There's a hint of chocolate and also dark fruit like cherries and fig.

Taste: Has a strong yet delicate flavor. Lots of heavily roasted malts with hints of caramel or toffee sweetness and the figs (but very minimal). Not much other fruit until near the finish, when you've got some of the cherries (no tartness) and other things coming in. There's also some dark chocolate and hop bitterness coming in. The aftertaste has a pronounced "roasted" taste, combined with some of the bitterness. I have the impression of some alcohol at the finish and into the aftertaste, but it really never comes out.

Mouthfeel: There's some tingly carbonation at the start of each sip, but it goes away quick. Medium-bodied and really smooth. I think it is a bit light, but without approaching being watery or anything.

Drinkability: High alcohol content, but no real taste of it. Good flavors and keeps my interest.

Definitely the best of the four Vertical Epics I've now had the pleasure of enjoying, though last year's was nice as well. Flavor-wise I felt this had a lot in common with the Chimay Blue - that really came to mind while drinking this. However, they are of course certainly different too. I think I'll try and get a few more bottles of this and cellar them a bit longer!

mithrascruor, Jun 13, 2010
Photo of SPLITGRIN
4.6/5  rDev +15.6%

Huge fluffy 3 inch head erupts with lots of thick bubbles and a little lace. It is deep tan in color. Body is predominetley black in color, very pretty indeed. Nose really represents the belgium style well with hints of raw wheat, zesty malt, and invigorating herbs. As it enters the mouth you quickly notice the rich malty balance and long lovely palate that is absent of raw wheat and frozen corn that are often present and not really something I like. No problem here. The finish is long dark and lingering. Leaves a nice slightly thick mouthfeel. This is a devilishly good beer.

SPLITGRIN, Dec 13, 2006
Photo of scootny
3.84/5  rDev -3.5%

Nice dark fluid with a light brown head. Not much carbonation visible. Decent lacing. Smell is dark malts and dark fruits.

Some Belgian yeast and light woody notes. Raisin, plum, figs give a nice aroma to blend with the caramel and sweet dark bread. Touch of earth in the hops.

Flavor is big and smooth, with a slight vinous undercurrent. Malt front is followed quickly by a nice combination of spices. Firm earthiness gives a nice dry finish.

Feel is rich and smooth. Velvety with a nice weight and carbonation. Easy drinking for this big a beer.

A good beer overall.

scootny, Feb 03, 2014
Photo of Pecan
4/5  rDev +0.5%

Pecan, Dec 20, 2012
Photo of objectivemonkey
4.33/5  rDev +8.8%

Into a chalice, pours a dark mahogany, dark and clear ruby hues through a light, a small head forming from the pour that settles to a thin film, light lacing in streaks and bubbles. The aroma is heavy on the malts, spicy and yeasty, cloves and pepper, dark fruits, ripe banana, plum,

The taste is even better, a hefty dosing of malts, lots of it, spices are fantastic, cloves and spicy pepper, brown sugar, maybe even molasses. The fruits of plum and raisins, all kinds of stuff going on, really nice. The mouth isn't anything special, a decent body, the carbonation is about right, a little warming with the alcohol. But the thing I love about certain styles is the extremely wide variation on the theme. Its another beer that tastes like none others, and a delicious one at that. Most of the time, I wish I lived in SoCal for beers like this. I want many more in my cellar.

objectivemonkey, Apr 05, 2007
Photo of IrishRedRock
4.38/5  rDev +10.1%

Ah yes, the annual VE. Always good stuff. This year, like '03, returns to the darker of Belgian-style ales, as it pours a very deep brown (black?) with a solid showing of heady foam. That Belgian yeast they're using at Stone must be great...it sure smells good. The aroma is quite spicy, full of cloves and yeast, and showing off some mild esters. Layers of flavors upon sipping; I had a rare "holy fock, this is good shit!" moment. Subtle spices carry over from the nose, building upon smoky layers of chocolate, licorice, plums and a kiss of herbacious hoppiness; all which balances the huge grain bill so nicely. Finishes nicely smooth, aftertaste is dark wheat. Wow. Very mild carbonation and well-hidden alcohol. I've made plans to purchase a few more bottles this weekend. This is great now, and I think aging might make it an absolute gem. We shall see. Great stuff.

IrishRedRock, Aug 19, 2006
Photo of sleazo
4.13/5  rDev +3.8%

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

sleazo, Dec 28, 2006
Photo of chefduff2
3.5/5  rDev -12.1%

chefduff2, Jan 05, 2013
Photo of moonknight31
4/5  rDev +0.5%

moonknight31, Jul 24, 2013
Photo of cbl2
3.9/5  rDev -2%

22 oz. bottle. Best by 12/12/12.

Pours almost pitch black into my chalice. Topped by a quarter inch of tightly packed tan head.

Caramelized sugar, figs, chocolate, hints of coffee, overripened fruit.

Relatively smooth with overtones of ripe dark fruit, though no one flavor pops out. Slightly hot alcohol tinge indicates this one could cellar a little more. Chocolate and coffee appear by midsip. Finish is bitter chocolate.

I almost had a heart attack when I found out the NY distribution for Stone was gone, but managed to track down 1/2 case in Boston for the beer fest (Bauer Wine & Spirits, a must visit). Not the best Epic, but I'm glad I have it.

cbl2, Jun 25, 2006
Photo of TKEbeerman
3.24/5  rDev -18.6%

A. Poured into my VE glass this brew pours the darkest of the VEs so far, mahogany brown.
s. The aroma contains notes of cinnamon and figs with some brown sugar.
T. The flavor has hints of chocolate and coffee and dark maulty goodness.
Mf. Mouthfeel is a little thin, but smooth.
Overall not a bad beer, not as good as 05.

TKEbeerman, Jan 19, 2013
Photo of scottoale
4.33/5  rDev +8.8%

Another limited release, annual ale...this one six years young to it's expected prime? Well so the epic story unfolds, this one pours out of the 650ml brown bomber a very dark brown with burgundy highlights barely coming through, capped with a bubbly light brown head. Has a good amount of natural carbonation and decent lacing.

The aromas that come out of this brew smell as if they come from abroad, overseas that is. Very spicy and fruity, somewhat potent and that distinctive Belgian yeastiness...honestly, it smell's of a fresh import from you know where. As the label describes it: "a deep, rich aroama of toasty malts, anise, Belgian yeast spiciness, and a hint of cedar", this is exactly what you taste...isn't it?

The mouthfeel is quite creamy and very smooth... a solid medium body, although they claim it as light, on the label. I suppose by the typical standards of Stone, it has a lighter body than they're more massiive offerings...still a pretty heafty brew by any standards, yet I could quite easily opt this as a beer for sessions. This is really tasty, yet not the typical Stone beer...if there is such a thing!

Thanks again G.K. and Co., this stuff is good to go as is...CHEERS !!!

scottoale, Jun 11, 2006
Photo of alamode
5/5  rDev +25.6%

alamode, Dec 11, 2011
Photo of neenerzig
4.28/5  rDev +7.5%

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

neenerzig, Jul 09, 2006
Photo of kmo1030
4.1/5  rDev +3%

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.

kmo1030, Jul 28, 2006
Photo of OStrungT
4.47/5  rDev +12.3%

This beer pours a brown so dark, it is almost black. The head is light brown. It looks thick and fluffy. It fades slowly, leaving many thick laces.

This beer has a strong bready aroma. It is also quite yeasty. It smells of cloves, and other spices. Grains of Paradise and coriander, and orange peal. This beer also has a plesent mild citrus hop aroma. A slight lemony aroma is present.

This beer has a lot of different flavors. It is taking me a little while to sort them all out. I taste some spices up front. As with the aroma, cloves, and coriander. It has a slight bubblegum flavor. It has an earthy yeast flavor to it as well. Citrus hop flavors are also detectable.

This beer is very smooth. It leaves a bubblegum like aftertaste. This beer is well carbonated.

I think, despite the slightly high alcohol content, that this beer might make a good session beer. It tastes very good, and the flavor is mild enough to not get cloying. I am anxious to see what a few years will do to this one.

OStrungT, Jun 10, 2006
Photo of Jredner
4/5  rDev +0.5%

Aroma is dark malts, spice, licorice and sweet dark fruits. Body is a a rich dark brown with a firm two finger thick tan head. Fore is pumpernickel, rye, licorice and then dark fruits, spice, alcohol and floral notes waft in. Quite spicy in the finish. Pretty damn tasty and gets tastier as it warms.

Jredner, Aug 24, 2006
Photo of weonfire
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%

weonfire, Dec 16, 2012
Photo of klewis
4.3/5  rDev +8%

A: Pours a stout-colored black with a tan 1-finger head that quickly subsides. Very little lacing.

S: Aromas of dark fruits, Belgian yeast, and anise.

T: Very unique flavor - like a Belgian version of an imperial stout. Roasted malt, bready yeast, and anise flavors meld to create complex and multi-dimensional taste.

M: Full-bodied with moderate carbonation.

D: What an interesting hybrid of styles. I'm really liking this one. Go get some.

klewis, Jun 30, 2006
Photo of joecast
4.22/5  rDev +6%

light tanned head forms about 2cm thick and settles to an attractive lace. deep mahogany and red with little visible carbonation. minimal lacing on the glass.

aroma seems dominated by dark plum and prune. some yeast character in the background accompanied by darker crystal/chocolate malt. some clove like you would get in a dark wheat. definitely has that aspect to it. pretty complex. not sure if it totally works for it as its like its two or three different beers just by the smell.

more dark fruit and malt in the flavor. spices came out for a bit after some pumpkin pie (mmm pumpkin pie) though not sure if it was the beer or the pie. either way it was nice. alcohol is very well hidden, though it does reveal itself once the bomber is finished. just enough belgian yeast character to make you know its not a generic neutral american strain, but not so much that it distracts from the rest of the beer.

smooth mouth feel gives the beer enough substance to satisfy. certainly an easy drinker, but one that can be done slowly. plenty of flavor to keep the drinker busy for a long while.

joecast, Nov 24, 2006
Stone 06.06.06 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 462 ratings.