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Stone 02.02.02 Vertical Epic Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Stone  02.02.02  Vertical  Epic  AleStone  02.02.02  Vertical  Epic  Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
81
good

55 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 55
Reviews: 20
rAvg: 3.54
pDev: 19.49%
Wants: 143
Gots: 9 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Witbier |  7.50% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

A new Vertical Epic will be released every year, with the goal being to collect them all and have a Vertical Epic tasting once the final Epic is released on 12/12/12. Each new Stone Vertical Epic Ale will be release one YEAR, one MONTH and one DAY apart. Vertical Epic 02/02/02 was not brewed "to style". Instead, we tried to create something new. It's triple-ish in nature, with wit character, coriander and orange peel, and has way more hops than either a Belgian triple or a Wit would. Belgian yeast was used. Belgian Strong Ale is the closest category that fits -- Greg Koch, Stone Brewing CEO. In addition, we are pleased to provide the homebrewing recipe:  http://stonebrew.com/timeline/020202 

(Beer added by: TheLongBeachBum on 04-22-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 55 | Reviews: 20 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of t0rin0
3.5/5  rDev -1.1%

t0rin0, Feb 25, 2013
Photo of zestar
3.75/5  rDev +5.9%

zestar, Jul 19, 2014
Photo of womencantsail
3.5/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Mike, you are an interesting character. And for that, I thank you. For who else would open an 02.02.02 on 01.09.11?

A: This mythical libation pours a cloudy orange-ish color with a thin ring of white foam.

S: What? No cardboard? A miracle, I say. Sweet oranges and a fair amount of spices (coriander, mostly) on the nose with a decent wheat and bread aroma. A bit of yeast is there as well.

T: Surprisingly flavor for an almost 9 year old witbier. There are a lot of fruity notes to this beer which was strange, but enjoyable. Orange and slightly bitter orange peel with some coriander complimenting a (somehow) intact sweet wheat and malt base.

M: The body is medium with a moderate level of carbonation.

D: I was really expecting this to be total crap. As a witbier, it's very middle of the road. But looking at this beer for "what it has become" in terms of the VE series, it's actually pretty good. This makes the beer sort of difficult to score...

womencantsail, Jan 13, 2011
Photo of spycow
3.5/5  rDev -1.1%

spycow, Mar 09, 2013
Photo of MasterSki
3.45/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bottle acquired by Sean9689. Served in a tulip glass.

A - Surprisingly ample carbonation that settles to a thin white cap and thicker collar, leaving behind a few spots of lace. Hazed orange-yellow body.

S - It smells like 'old' beer, but not in the bad sense of the word. Very fruity, with a hand lotion-esque note to it, peaches and pears, a touch of vanilla. There's oxidation, but thankfully it isn't of the cardboard variety.

T - The taste is quite similar, with fruity flavors and a dab of caramel, as well as sherry-like oxidation. Not great, but not terrible either.

M - Surprisingly zesty carbonation, a bit grainy in texture, medium in body, and no perceptible alcohol.

D - For an 11-year-old Wit it's surprisingly decent. That being said, I certainly wouldn't buy or trade for this. Went down pretty easy, and unfortunately this far surpassed some of the subsequent VEs.

MasterSki, Mar 06, 2013
Photo of mendvicdog
3/5  rDev -15.3%

mendvicdog, Oct 14, 2013
Photo of Halcyondays
4/5  rDev +13%

Halcyondays, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of orangesol
3.25/5  rDev -8.2%

orangesol, Jan 20, 2013
Photo of mothman
3.13/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a small layer of white head. Color is a hazed golden yellow.

Aroma: Lemon and wheat. Kind of piney with grassy hops. Pretty earthy.

Taste: pine and grass. Lemon citrus. Wheat. Light coriander and spice. A bit of booze showing.

Mouthfeel: Creamy and smooth. Medium bodied with a lot to medium amount of carbonation. Ends dry and weedy.

Overall, not an epic fail. Somewhat drinkable, but I wouldn't go crazy to get this one. It seems to be holding up fine, but it isn't worth the trade/ebay value (unless you are looking for the tick of course). I didn't have that much to say about this one for being as highly sought after as it is. Still, I was excited to try it.

mothman, Jan 26, 2011
Photo of Gonzoillini
3.5/5  rDev -1.1%

Gonzoillini, Feb 03, 2013
Photo of Bighuge
4.43/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer has been described as an Imperial Wit by the brewer, Lee Chase. His intention with this brew is that it be able to cellar for 12 years.

Pours a cloudy golden with definite orange highlights. A slight white head that dissipates quickly, but laces the glass nicely. Aroma is similar to that of your run-of-the mill wit, but there seems to be more coriander and a substantial orange zest present. And there is just a hint of alcohol on the nose. This is one wit that you can taste the alcohol. (I'm sure this will diminish over the next 12 years.) There's a great orange/lemony zestiness. Phenolic content is fairly high. And fruity esters are abundant. There is some good bitterness here too. And a lingering one at that. The beer has a medium body. It's a very smooth and easy drinking brew for what I assume is fairly high in alcohol content. It's just a tad syrupy. A joy to try and will be a joy to try again years from now I'm sure.

Bighuge, Apr 22, 2002
Photo of HopHead84
2.05/5  rDev -42.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12/13/2012

Bottle shared by Overlord at the start of a tasting of all the Vertical Epics. The bottle was stored at 35 degrees for 6 years and then at 55 degrees for the remaining 4.

Dark orange. Clear pour. Small bubbly head fades fast. Vanilla and rust in the nose with tons of unpleasant cardboard-like oxidation. Some paper towel, cardboard, and metal in the flavor with a little bread. This beer is pretty bad. I'm not sure why Stone thought this would hold up for 10 years.

HopHead84, Dec 17, 2012
Photo of johnnnniee
3.91/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was fortunate to try this last night at an epic tasting held by my good friend Mike, thanks for the opportunity MrBarleywine!
The first in the series pours a slightly hazy deep golden color with an almost non existent off white head that dissipates quickly. The aroma is sweet with caramel and light tropical fruit with a lightly spicy bready yeasty bite to provide a bit of balance. The flavor is sweet like the aroma promised. Sugary and caramel malts with a faded but present spicy peppery yeast bite. Medium body with a moderate level of carbonation and a sweet spicy mouthfeel. This held up better than I expected, but its also a stretch to call this a wit I guess. It has lots of sherry oxidized notes, but it drank pretty good. Probably past its prime, but holding up just the same.

johnnnniee, Jan 27, 2013
Photo of chippo33
4.25/5  rDev +20.1%

chippo33, Mar 13, 2013
Photo of WOLFGANG
3/5  rDev -15.3%

WOLFGANG, Jul 08, 2013
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.03/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sampled 1 year and 6 months after it was first launched.

If you’ve had the Stone VE03, then the bottle for the VE02 has the same design, bar the circle of numbers below the word Stone, which is comprised of 02’s rather than 03’s.

Pours with a clear dark blond-to-golden look with hints of amber and real-gold when back-lit. Not much of a head at first, large bubbles initially coagulate to form a large bubble mass above the gold liquid. When swirled, the inherent carbonation almost struggles to come out solution, and though they form a lovely golden soda-like mass – they do little to support the head.

Very strong nose, and highly reminiscent of a strong Belgium Tripel. Herbs, a yeasty spiciness and a definitive strong hint of coriander breaks through, it’s almost as if the lack of a thick solid head, and the gaps between the large bubbles, allows the aroma’s to just ooze out of solution. Deeply inhaled – I could be sat outside of a Café in Brussels.

Strong spicy malts fanfare the Tripel-like entrance, the tastes build with an acetic citric-bite mixed with coriander and some grain malts that captivates the middle of the beer. Tangy with raw orange and lemon zest, as well as a light grain but soft bitterness, the ending has a memorable Tripel like perfume-like wheat-zesty twist. An astringent finish with a citric bitterness that is reasonably smooth and crisp. Leaves a soft delicate warming feel in the stomach that reminds you of the beers strength.

Spicy alcohols are assertive in the mouthfeel, but not at all overpowering, but they do let you know who is Boss. Leaves a smooth spicy lemon zest coating on the cheeks & in the mouth when swallowed. Crisp.

I had a Bomber of this, but I am not so sure that I could drink another one to be honest (as if I would ever get the chance!!!). A strong beer, the high alcohol does not detract or hinder its drinkability, neither does it complexity, but it still has some raw edges that do.

A complex beer that I can only describe as a Tripel mixed 80/20 with a zest-biting Wheat beer, that tries to take the edge of off the ‘rawness’ of the former, but fails. The VE02 is the first of the Stone Verticals, & it is undoubtedly already a very rare beer. But I am not sure if it will survive the journey to the 12th December 2012 for the ‘12on12 Stone Vertical Tasting’ to be perfectly honest. I bet the VE03 will though, I’m glad I have a case of that one at least.

What better way to celebrate my First Anniversary today on BeerAdvocate.com.

TheLongBeachBum, Aug 17, 2003
Photo of ehammond1
3.78/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On Tap

Stone Epic Festival 12-12-12
Stone Brewing Co.
Escondido, CA

(Aged for 10 years)

Cloudy, hazy, murky orange and gold with just the tiniest hint of a white head. Leaves the glass nearly clean but slightly oily.

The aroma has held up incredibly well for the age. Citrus notes along with bits of apple and banana combine with a very mild yeast character.

The flavor is similar to the aroma, with notes of lemon combining with green apple (in a good way), apple skin, mild yeast, and wheat. Very few signs of aging, which is surprising, because most other beers this day were decidedly dulled and older-tasting than their once-fresh former selves.

Medium bodied with low-moderate carbonation.

One of the highlights of the festival. Quite a remarkable test of time.

ehammond1, Dec 13, 2012
Photo of tommyguz
4/5  rDev +13%

tommyguz, Aug 07, 2013
Photo of koopa
4/5  rDev +13%

koopa, May 12, 2013
Photo of DarthKostrizer
2.68/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle generously shared by Jerz and I felt fortunately to get my pour from him

Look: Pours a very light yellow color and a bit cloudy. The pour yields absolutely no head but there is still some carbonation bubbles floating about

Smell: The smell reminds me of dirty soapy dish water. It has a bit of funk as well from the yeast and earthy spices.

Taste: The flavors are very muted and I wish I had tried this fresh to see just how well this one has held up over the years. The beer has that same muted earthy spice notes think wild dandelions. Also has some lemon, vanilla custard and that same dirty dish water character

Mouthfeel: Very light body and almost no carbonation

Overall: To this day I am still in shock that I got to try this beer because I knew I would never spend the money on one or trade for one so i didn't think I would get to try it. With 8+ years on it and it being a witbier it has held up ok and I'm not sure it was ever a good beer to begin but I could be wrong. Anyway 2+ more years will not help this beer out at all but to everyone doing the whole vertical Enjoy it.

DarthKostrizer, Nov 06, 2011
Photo of beerguy101
4.33/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Medium orange color. Small head. Aroma is coriander, vanilla and various fruits. Medium bodied Belgian style ale. Malts are bright and slightly sweet and fruity. Hops are citrusy. Interesting blend of spices and flavors. Seem to change with each sip. Well balanced. Complexity of a nice Belgian. Well done. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly bitter.

beerguy101, Sep 25, 2003
Photo of Overlord
4.2/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to Jerz for hosting an awesome tasting, and for so many generous beer connoisseurs who made the event possible.

Broke this one out of the cellar for Jerz's tasting. A few notes before getting to my review:

1.)This was in my fridge until late 2008, at which point I finally had to get rid of my extra large beer fridge. At that point, it went to a cellar temp of 50ish degrees.

2.)A lot of people at the tasting, me included, kind of expected it to be bad. I was dreading it, actually. I mean, it's an Imperial Wit? How could it still be good? And, frankly, I don't care much for wits (although I don't know if I've ever tried an IMPERIAL Wit before). This was pretty much about The Tick(tm).

In any event, here we go:

Pours a light yellow good. Some white bubbling. I was pretty happy that the somewhat rusted/discolored cap kept the carbonation in.

Smells faintly of spicy yeast, with a large citrus (ripe oranges and mandarin oranges) presence. A bit of honey/honesuckle to the nose. A very pleasant aroma. I must admit, with a bunch of sours and heavy -bal aged stouts on the table, this was an interesting change of pace.

The taste was surprisingly strong. I don't think of wits being a really flavorful style beer, so this was quite surprising ... especially given its advanced age. Melon, honeysuckle/honey, a really, really surprisingly strong orange background with a bit, just a bit, of peach skin zest ... maybe a splash of creamed vanilla. A bit of spice to it, but unlike EVERY OTHER STONE VERTICAL EPIC SINCE 2006, it doesn't assault you with a blistering over-powering tornado of spices that ruin whatever else the beer is trying to do.

Nice refreshing mouthfeel.

I suppose the other reviews will let me know if I'm overly biased, but this was a really pleasant surprise. Stone's old brewer maybe knew what the f*** he was doing after all. This and VE06 have been the only vertical epics I have unreserved praise for. I can't believe how light, yet flavorful, this was after nearly 10 years.

Overlord, Jan 11, 2011
Photo of beerpadawan
4/5  rDev +13%

beerpadawan, Aug 27, 2012
Photo of Kurmaraja
3.5/5  rDev -1.1%

Kurmaraja, Apr 07, 2014
Photo of charlzm
3.3/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Consumed on January 20th, 2013 at a private Vertical Epic tasting.

Hazy golden beer with surprisingly energetic carbonation. A modest white head formed immediately and persisted for a few minutes. Some floaties in the glass.

The aroma is intense floral honey and an agreeable tea note. Odd for the style, but, after almost 11 years in the bottle, reactions were bound to happen.

Flavor is similar to the aroma with strong floral honey up front, faint caramel and wheat malt and tea traces in the mid taste and a significant but controlled bitterness on the finish. Not exactly delicious, but interesting. For the stated style? Pretty far off-base.

The beer was medium-bodied with zippy astringency and carbonation prickle, lending to its ease of consumption.

The drinkability was amazingly good for such a vintage beer but was more interesting as an experimental result than as an actual beer to enjoy.

charlzm, Jan 21, 2013
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Stone 02.02.02 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
81 out of 100 based on 55 ratings.