1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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

53 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 53
Reviews: 20
rAvg: 3.54
pDev: 19.77%
Wants: 143
Gots: 10 | 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
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 53 | Reviews: 20 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Bighuge
Bighuge

Minnesota

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.

Serving type: bottle

04-22-2002 19:36:45 | More by Bighuge
Photo of HopHead84
HopHead84

California

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.

Serving type: bottle

12-17-2012 21:40:13 | More by HopHead84
Photo of johnnnniee
johnnnniee

New Hampshire

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.

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2013 02:10:53 | More by johnnnniee
Photo of chippo33
chippo33

Vermont

4.25/5  rDev +20.1%

03-13-2013 23:14:10 | More by chippo33
Photo of WOLFGANG
WOLFGANG

South Carolina

3/5  rDev -15.3%

07-08-2013 04:41:54 | More by WOLFGANG
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
TheLongBeachBum

California

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.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2003 03:11:36 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of ehammond1
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.

Serving type: on-tap

12-13-2012 03:09:32 | More by ehammond1
Photo of koopa
koopa

New Jersey

4/5  rDev +13%

05-12-2013 02:32:06 | More by koopa
Photo of DarthKostrizer
DarthKostrizer

California

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.

Serving type: bottle

11-06-2011 20:37:35 | More by DarthKostrizer
Photo of beerguy101
beerguy101

California

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.

Serving type: bottle

09-25-2003 02:26:01 | More by beerguy101
Photo of Overlord
Overlord

California

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.

Serving type: bottle

01-11-2011 05:15:13 | More by Overlord
Photo of tommyguz
tommyguz

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev +13%

08-07-2013 02:39:38 | More by tommyguz
Photo of beerpadawan
beerpadawan

California

4/5  rDev +13%

08-27-2012 14:37:44 | More by beerpadawan
Photo of SpdKilz
SpdKilz

Illinois

3.25/5  rDev -8.2%

02-07-2013 01:01:50 | More by SpdKilz
Photo of charlzm
charlzm

California

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.

Serving type: bottle

01-21-2013 18:28:50 | More by charlzm
Photo of bum732
bum732

Lesotho

1.5/5  rDev -57.6%

10-13-2013 01:32:46 | More by bum732
Photo of CelticAleMan
CelticAleMan

California

4.25/5  rDev +20.1%

08-20-2012 01:53:12 | More by CelticAleMan
Photo of Kurmaraja
Kurmaraja

Washington

3.5/5  rDev -1.1%

04-07-2014 15:37:33 | More by Kurmaraja
Photo of cadaugherty
cadaugherty

Illinois

1.75/5  rDev -50.6%

02-04-2013 04:58:01 | More by cadaugherty
Photo of HaveUSeenMyCellar
HaveUSeenMyCellar

California

4/5  rDev +13%

12-27-2012 03:03:41 | More by HaveUSeenMyCellar
Photo of ThatsThatDude
ThatsThatDude

New York

3/5  rDev -15.3%

01-06-2014 14:34:19 | More by ThatsThatDude
Photo of sinstaineddemon
sinstaineddemon

Connecticut

3.75/5  rDev +5.9%

02-26-2013 01:40:53 | More by sinstaineddemon
Photo of JTomczak
JTomczak

Connecticut

3.25/5  rDev -8.2%

08-13-2013 18:37:11 | More by JTomczak
Photo of Westsidethreat
Westsidethreat

California

4.28/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served on tap at Stone Winter Storm in 4 ounce servings, 10am.

A: Medium blonde with meringue highlights. Body is fairly still, only a few bubbles are active. Head appears velvety, the color of creme fresh.

S: Honey suckle, jasmine, vanilla, strawberries & cream and some yeast.

T: This is really like drinking straight honey suckle nectar. Orange peel, grass trimmings and pure vanilla work very well with the yeast. Surprisingly bitter, but well balanced and quite nice. Finishes sweet with honey and more floral notes.

M: Medium body with an absolutely silky mouthfeel.

D: What a great beer to start your morning! I'm blessed to have had the opportunity to sample this. Frankly, I'm surprised its held up this well but the 7.5% alcohol is working hard to preserve it.

Serving type: on-tap

01-01-2007 21:02:29 | More by Westsidethreat
Photo of Treebs
Treebs

Illinois

3.33/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

So we got it. Thanks to Sean9689 for doing the legwork and securing the bottle. Opened up on 02.02.13. The anniversary of the first Vertical Epic. 22 oz. bottle served in a CCB snifter.

A: Pours a semi clear orange color with solid white head forming on the pour. Surprised by the amount of carbonation in this guy.

S: Pretty fruit still, some light oxidation with a little bit of prunes. Seems like it oxidized in a non-poor way. We'll see what the taste entails.

T: Definitely oxidized in a sherry-like way. Deep dark dark fruits, some figs and prunes with a stale oat flavor to it. The best way to describe it is it just tasted "old". Mild paper from the oxidation as well, but surprised at how this has held up .

M: Medium to light bodied with a pretty solid and ample carbonation level. Pretty easy drinking.

O: As mentioned before this beer just tasted old, but the oxidation took a sherry like approach to it which lessened the blow of the usual cardboard flavors that a beer of this age would usually pick up. For being a 7.5% witbier, it surprised everyone at the tasting.

Serving type: bottle

02-08-2013 03:16:33 | More by Treebs
Stone 02.02.02 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
81 out of 100 based on 53 ratings.