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Stone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout - Stone Brewing Co.

Stone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal StoutStone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

836 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 836
Reviews: 698
rAvg: 4.12
pDev: 10.44%


Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  9.20% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: ThreeWiseMen on 07-02-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 836 | Reviews: 698 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

4.05/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A great stout, thanks Radek Kliber. Good black opaque looks and lacey. Good aroma, a little ourness and hops. Rich, there is Balance in the taste, a sipper, a good bitterness.Cocoa integrated with dark malts Lightly roasted malts.An appex of fruitiness.Second bottle, 7 months later, bitter but good good chocolate taste.

Serving type: bottle

08-14-2008 23:42:47 | More by Sammy
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84

California

3.93/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

July 2008 vintage. Almost 3 years old at this point.

Pours a pitch black color with a 1 inch dark khaki head that fades to nothing. Random tiny spots of lacing dot the glass here and there on the drink down. Smells of bittersweet chocolate, toasted oats, and dark roasted malts. There is a hint of soy sauce in the smell. Taste is of some smoky malt, toasted oats, with a dark cocoa powder finish. There is a bit of fruitiness that comes out as the beer warms. Very little bitterness on the palate after each sip. There is a good level of carbonation which makes for a medium bodied and smooth mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer after approximately 3 years but I bet it was better when it first came out. I am glad I found a bottle to try but I wouldn't get another one at this point.

Serving type: bottle

05-28-2011 06:55:41 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of BuckeyeNation
BuckeyeNation

Iowa

3.18/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Motor oil black with no accents at the edges... not even with bright sunshine behind the glass. An outstanding looking cap of coffee-with-cream colored foam sits atop the beer. The foam looks milkshake creamy and is beginning to leave tattered sheets of lace that look great as well. Easy call.

For a double stout to which 'artisanal chocolate' has been added, the nose is disappointing. There's almost no chocolatiness and there isn't much roastiness either. Since the idea was to brew a beer with few hops... ditto on that score too. BCOS does smell 'black' malty, and there's a bit of alcohol, but that's about it.

12th Anniversary Ale might have sounded good on paper. Too bad it doesn't work very well in liquid. I'm not sure why Stone didn't brew a big, sweetish, chocolate stout in the manner of Southern Tier Choklat. They might not have been able to top that legendary brew, but the result would almost certainly have been preferable to this. Dark chocolate works. Burnt chocolate doesn't.

The problem, I think, was in trying to replace hop bitterness with chocolate bitterness. It gives the beer a sharp, astringent, almost medicinal flavor, that isn't helped by too much unmasked alcohol. For whatever reason, the malts don't provide much flavor or complexity and whole thing sinks under its own weight. Too harsh? Maybe, but Stone set the bar high by virtue of the rest of their deliciously drinkable lineup.

The mouthfeel came through unscathed, as I knew it would. Brewers this talented don't suddenly forget how to design beer that is a joy to drink from a sensory standpoint, no matter what questionable decisions they make with respect to ingredients. Cliff Notes version: medium-full and velvety smooth.

Stone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout is not a beer for beginners and it isn't even a beer for connoisseurs (yes, in my humble opinion). It's too unforgiving and it isn't that easy to drink as a result. I'm confident that 13th Anniversary Ale (whatever it is) will get this train back on the tracks... where it belongs.

Serving type: bottle

03-27-2009 15:07:37 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of mikesgroove
mikesgroove

South Carolina

4.6/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I had the pleasure of getting to try this one on tap at Barleys the other day. I didnt make it to the release, but was thrilled when I saw it was still around the next day. Served in a Duvel glass straight from the tap, this one was consumed on 09/19/2008.

The pour was straight up friggin nice. Rich dark brown, competlely opaque. There was a gorgeous looking head on top, maybe two and a half inches in height that just literally would not fade away. Huge sticky and gooey side glass lace just would not quit and really gave this one of the better looking stouts I have seen recently.

The aroma was just as I would have expected. Lots of chocolate here, tons of it, with a good amount of bitter hoppiness coming through as well. Some notes of a bourbon like alcohol and a bit of a sweet molasses touch to it as well. Really very well done. The flavor almost made me fall out of my seat, as it was just that damn good. Intense notes of sweet chocolate folded over themselves and dived into a rich molasses filled bourbon like alcohol. Super sweet in the front before turning intenesly bitter and hoppy on the finish. I had the mouth dry out soo bad when i was done I almost reached for some water. This was almost remiscent of Darkness in the hoppiness of the finish. Super creamy and smooth, this was definitly a full bodied stout with an excellent amount of carbonation that gave it a velvet like smoothness. I could not believe the alcohol was as high as it was, as I was just sipping away on this one with no regard, really well masked and very welll hidden.

Overall I was very, very impressed with this one. One of the best chocolate stouts i have ever had, nevermind for an anniversary ale. They really hit a homerun with this one and I would love to try it again.

Serving type: on-tap

09-21-2008 22:56:43 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of womencantsail
womencantsail

California

4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've been drinking these for the past year, but I finally decided to review it...

A: Pours black as night with great viscosity. A nice tan head about a finger and a half tall.

S: Smells like...dark chocolate (crazy, I know). The roasted malt really comes through on this as well as the booze (especially as it comes up to temperature).

T: I find this to be really boozy at first, but with each sip, it calms down and the other flavors come out. When I say other flavors I mean the roasted malt, the bitter taste that I perceive to be the chocolate, and some sweetness from the oatmeal.

M: Full bodied with low to moderate carbonation which lends the beer a wonderful creamy smoothness.

D: This is still a bit "hot", but keeps on getting better. I'm glad I have several more to hold on to.

Serving type: bottle

07-15-2009 23:59:20 | More by womencantsail
Photo of brentk56
brentk56

North Carolina

3.93/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a pitch black color with a rocky mocha head; a fair amount of lace, too

Smell: Bitter chocolate and lots of roasted malt

Taste: Opens with a black bread and chocolate flavor that gets increasingly fruity and bitter by mid-palate; after the swallow, the bitter hops kick it up a notch and provide a lingering, burnt charcoal finish

Mouthfeel: Full body with creamy oatmeal character; moderate carbonation

Drinkability: The flavor profile is interesting but a bit of a battle on the palate

Serving type: bottle

10-24-2008 01:32:25 | More by brentk56
Photo of Phyl21ca
Phyl21ca

Quebec (Canada)

4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a dark brown color head with good retention and good lacing. Aroma is totally dominated by some bitter chocolate note (not at all surprising when you consider the label) with not much discernable hops. Taste is also dominated by bitter roasted malt with some distinctive chocolate notes. I was expecting more hops considering the brewer reputation but this one is really dominated by chocolate. Full body with a creamy texture and good carbonation and also nom discernable alcohol were noted. I think I preferred the Southern Tier Choklat a bit more then this one but this is still a winner.

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2008 19:51:44 | More by Phyl21ca
Photo of BEERchitect
BEERchitect

Kentucky

4.4/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12/16/08
Had on-tap at the Chase Taproom. This beer impresses even more from the tap. Creamier, better emphasis on the oat silkiness, and stronger chocolate flavors. Lightly carbonated like most English ales, the beer weighs a little heavier to the mouth, but fuller, rounder, richer and without the carbonic bite found in the bottle.

7/22/08
After reading all the hype about this beer, I couldn't wait to get my paws on a bomber. Finally, the beer arrives in Lexington and I had the pleasure to share it with family and friends. The very thick beer slowly flows into the glass with a velvety appearance and a marshmellow-y head formation that lasted til the last sip, adding a lot of lacing and legging on the glass. Aromas were subdued, but offered a rich milky, chocolate, coffee scent that balanced well, pure, and clean. Low esters, fruits, alcohols, and phenols to the nose makes the beer purely inviting. Flavors favor the chocolates giving a brownie-cocoa rich taste with complimentary notes of near espresso / nutty columbian notes. The oates (and I suspect light milk sugars) gives the beer the needed sweetness and full flavor that tempers the cocoa-coffee aggression. Again the fruits and spices are very moderate allowing the true choco-java-milkshake character to dominate. Even the bitterness of hops balance well with the coffee bitterness and sourness to offset the remarkable malt backbone. Finishes with a round chocolate flavor and coffee bitterness. This is one pheonominal beer and I suspect that 6-9 months of age will bring the flavors together even better.

Serving type: on-tap

07-22-2008 03:23:10 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of Thorpe429
Thorpe429

Illinois

3.83/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark black with a creamy head that falls down without leaving too much lacing. Strong smell of bittersweet chocolate along with some dark fruits. Taste is composed mostly of dark chocolate, roasted malt, and a tad bit of fruit. A bit alcoholic, but other than that it's fairly smooth and drinks well, although not in large quantities.

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2010 20:47:31 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of ChainGangGuy
ChainGangGuy

Georgia

3.65/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours an inky black body with a tall, though collapsing, dark tan head.

Smell: Malty aroma smelling of freshly pulled espresso and dark chocolate sauce, with accompanying notes of prune skins, soot, and rubbing alcohol.

Taste: Thick, luscious maltiness with a sharp taste of espresso and burnt cocoa nibs. Light trace of fruitiness midway. Coarse, roasty tar component, maybe a touch of creosote. Very minor yeastiness. A bit hot on the roasty, creme da cacao finish.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied. Medium carbonation. Rather chewy mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Paired well enough with the movie "Ben-Hur". An epic brew for an epic film. A little harsh and rough around the edges at this present stage, but hopefully some time spent mellowing in the cellar will do wonders for it.

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2008 23:13:23 | More by ChainGangGuy
Photo of TMoney2591
TMoney2591

Illinois

4.15/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Thanks to the Central PA group of the Gang Bang BIF for this bottle!

Loved this stuff following my last days at Purdue, so I was excited to have another shot at it in this BIF. It pours a straight onyx topped by a finger of relatively short-lived brown foam. The nose comprises roasted malts, chocolate, molasses, vanilla, and blackened pretzels. The taste brings in more of the same, with more roasted malts and chocolate thrown in, along with a bit of coffee. The body is a stolid medium, with a very light moderate carbonation and a fairly chewy feel. Overall, this stuff hasn't gone downhill at all yet. Still as tasty and enjoyable as I remember it being (for once my nostalgic memory didn't let me down).

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2011 06:06:40 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of NeroFiddled
NeroFiddled

Pennsylvania

4.03/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

How odd that I'm tasting a 12th Anniversary beer and the "8" Vertical Epic just a week or so before I take my first trip to San Diego...

The S.12.A.B.C.O.S. pours a pitch black body beneath a finger-thick head of brown froth. Well, it's not actually brown, but it's close. It's kind of the color of wet sand right after a wave has receeded. Let's just say 'very dark tan'. Head retention and lacing, however, could be better even given a 9.2% abv.

The nose is sweeter than might be expected given the color, but I guess that's the oatmeal at work (along with lots of malt). And the chocolate. It definitely has a cocoa note, and then some soft caramel. It's even sweetly bready - and the dark, very acidic coffee notes that the black body suggested to me are nowhere to be found. It is roasty, but it's a very soft roastiness. Supple. Surprisingly pleasant. And that carries over into the flavor...

... this dark beer is actually more of a teddy bear than a giant with sharp gnashing teeth. Oh - don't forget the strength, it's there for sure, but the alcohol never really shows itself, and the rich but somehow lower-key malts leave it remarkably smooth. I find distinct notes of caramel malt, a hint of cocoa, and and almost honey-glazed grainy/bready character. It's rich but it doesn't really appear rich. Or maybe I mean that it's not as 'hit you over the head' rich as you might expect. It's very drinkable.

The chocolate makes it's presence known mainly in the finish, followed by a bit of raspy bitterness, not surprisingly unlike bittersweet chocolate! Very well done! There's also a bit of hops that appear just after first sip, and carry through, making their biggest hit in the end. A touch of swirling dark licorice then appears and lingers for seemingly forever.

As for the mouthfeel, well a silky mouthfeel is commonly attributed to the use of oats, and it certainly has a silky mouthfeel. Medium-full bodied and SMOOTH.

Overall, I found it to be surprisingly drinkable despite its strenght, with a balance of softly sweet flavors and smoothness. Certainly worth checking out!

Serving type: bottle

08-26-2008 02:41:50 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of biboergosum
biboergosum

Alberta (Canada)

3.95/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008 version.

This beer pours a dense black, with a thin meniscus of soapy beige head, which leaves no lace in its wake. It smells of light roasted malt, licorice, dry chocolate, and a boozy edginess. The taste is caramel malt, more dry powdery chocolate and licorice, bitter toffee, treacle, mild pine hops, and an overarching alcohol warmth. The carbonation is fairly soft, the body smooth, silky, and full, and it finishes sweet, the grainy oatmeal predominating, but the drying of the hops and booze can be detected after a short time.

A tasty, smooth concoction.

Serving type: bottle

02-09-2010 23:44:43 | More by biboergosum
Photo of MasterSki
MasterSki

Illinois

3.85/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked this up at Discount Liquor a while back. Served in a Bell's tulip.

A - A finger of tan foam settles to a thin collar, some wisps, and a bit of spotty lace. Black body with a glint of brown at the edges of the glass.

S - Definitely lots of bitter chocolate. Lightly roasted grains, caramel, and perhaps a faint bit of oxidation creeping in. Needs to warm up a bit, but otherwise fairly enjoyable.

T - Taste is also heavy on the mildly bitter baker's chocolate, with some notes of vanilla, anise, and caramel. Unfortunately it seems a bit hollow mid-palate and perhaps is showing its age here.

M - Medium body, velvety melted chocolate bar texture, lower carbonation, and a lightly dry finish. None of the listed 9.2% shows up after 3+ years of aging.

D - While this is was still pretty decent I feeling this one is on the decline, although mileage may vary based on cellar conditions. Still, an enjoyable tick.

Serving type: bottle

01-22-2012 00:36:26 | More by MasterSki
Photo of TheManiacalOne
TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

4.13/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into an imperial pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep black color, with a large dark brown head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of dark chocolate, roasted oats, some dark fruit and a touch of hops.

T: The taste is very malty but not overly thick as many other big stouts with flavors of oats & dark chocolate. As the name implies there's a significant bitterness but it's a pleasant one created by the dark chocolate and decent hops presence. The after-taste is slightly bitter.

M: Smooth and crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, slightly sticky finish.

D: Tasty, goes down quite easily, not too filling, strong kick, very good representation of style, this is a very nice stout to relax with, it definitely hit the spot as I relaxed and watched movie.

Serving type: bottle

02-04-2009 05:15:10 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of russpowell
russpowell

Oklahoma

3.85/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours mahogany to black with much effervescence & 4+ fingers of dark brown head. Average head retention & good lacing

S: Roasted malt, coffee grinds & a touch of iron

T: Baker's chocolate, iron, & dryness up front. Dryness & boozeyness comes through as this warms, plus cocoa & roasted malt. Finishes with charred grain & chocolate

MF: Smooth, oily with minimal carbonation, some booze heat detracts a bit

Drinks good for the ABV, but this was semi-letdown. Good, not great effort from Stone, but worthy of a few pints before moving on, ABV was semi-detractor for the style & ABV, pretty good bang for the buck at $7 a bomber IMO. Sit on this a few months to a year & maybe much better???

Serving type: bottle

07-15-2008 05:29:36 | More by russpowell
Photo of WesWes
WesWes

New York

4.13/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a deep, dark black color with a thick frothy brown head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a dry, earthy black malt scent along with a slight chocolate aroma. It's warming with a dry oatmeal presence. The taste is quite bitter. It goes down smooth with a bittersweet chocolate finish. It's got a stiff black malt feel with just enough chocolate malt and real chocolate to balance the flavor. The mouthfeel is good as well. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is another great brew from Stone. It's well brewed and full of great flavor. I'm glad chocolate is being used more in brewing. I'm a big fan.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2008 22:40:03 | More by WesWes
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

4.08/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Stone 15th Anniversary snifter, this is a really nice beer. Beer is black with a one finger dark brown head of small bubbles, good retention, nice lacing, looks great.

Aroma is strong and chocolaty, with a mild roast.

Beer is medium in body and sweet with a nice late bitterness from the roast of the grains, the finish is clean and the midpalate is sweet with a nice chocolate flavor and a medium body. I really like it. I'd have it again.

Serving type: bottle

05-23-2012 15:24:25 | More by drabmuh
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

4.55/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Kaiser81 for trading this one to me.

Pours black with a brown head. Aroma is sweet roasted malt with a strong bitter chocolate component. The flavor is lots of coffee. Chocolate is present as well with it beginning as a darker almost milk chocolate and ending with a bitter finish. Very creamy thick mouthfeel and medium carbonation. I love stouts that include oatmeal and this is one of the best ones I have had.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2010 18:22:24 | More by Mora2000
Photo of Gueuzedude
Gueuzedude

Arizona

3.4/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A healthy pour produces a cresting, initially four-finger thick, richly browned, frothy head. As the head slowly collapses it leaves quite a bit of lacing on the sides of my 25cl tulip glass. The beer is quite simply black and remains opaque no matter how close I hold it up to the light. Bitter burnt grain aroma and substantially toasted malt aromas are easily noticeable. At times a rich chocolate note is noticed, but at others it is drowned out by the roast character. The burnt malt notes at times can be overwhelmingly sharp, acrid and acidic and that once noticed chocolate note seems to be a faint memory. Hot alcohol notes are noticeable as the beer gets near room temperature.

Thick and creamy feeling up front and not any where near as sweet as the body would suggest. Lots of bitter burnt malt notes linger from beginning to end and in fact really lingers on in the palate after the beer has gone down my throat. Some thin, bitter, dark chocolate notes are found in the middle of this beer and the finish has a lingering note of dusty, dark cocoa powder. Even as the beer gets substantially warmer it does not lose its aggressive, acrid burnt flavors. They become perhaps a touch more tempered, but still overly influence the finish and make this excessively bitter. On the plus side, while it is quite burnt in character, the flavor does note get overly acidic from the burnt notes.

This beer is going to need some time before I can really get into it. The question remains though if it will mellow before it becomes overly oxidized. A great beer for those who like aggressively roasted flavors, I can't quite get into this though as it makes me think I am chewing on charcoal.

Purchased: Plaza Liquors, Tucson AZ

Serving type: bottle

07-13-2008 04:44:22 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of Knapp85
Knapp85

Pennsylvania

4.03/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Damn good brew, The color of this one pours out as a thick black oil like goop. The head slowly lifts to the top of the glass where it forms a dark brown thick foamy head. The smell of the beer had a lot of the dark chocolate aromas along with plenty of roasted malts. The taste of the beer was dry, rich, and chocolaty. There was a good bitterness in there too, could be the dark chocolate or the hops, not really sure. The mouthfeel of this beer was great, super thick and coats the mouth really well. Overall a stunning brew and very glad I got to try it.

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2011 03:13:29 | More by Knapp85
Photo of jwc215
jwc215

Wisconsin

3.38/5  rDev -18%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours black with a thin brown head that immediately disappears.

The smell is of baker's chocolate, something rubbery and slightly burnt. Aroma improves a bit with progress.

The taste is of bitter chocolate with boozy alcohol. Bitter with restrained sweetness, though some chocolate chip oatmeal cookie does come to mind in the aftertaste, at first. As it progresses, it takes on more of a burnt coffee taste. Then, oddly switches back and forth. Acidity pretty high on a whole.

Almost full bodied, with a bit of thinness showing through at times.

Despite booziness/high abv, and some characteristics that seem to pop through throwing it off, it does have a certain "sipping" drinkability. I do have mixed feelings about this one, with some smells and sips better than others. As a whole, though, the burnt edges and small other "detractors" (i.e. some aroma that is rubbery/overly tar-like) make this stand in the way of what it could be.

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2008 02:28:52 | More by jwc215
Photo of RblWthACoz
RblWthACoz

Pennsylvania

4.03/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Man, drinking all these anniversary brews is becoming a part time job it seems.

Pours black with a tan head. Nose is thick malts and some chocolate and a wee bit of molasses. Flavor is thick. Minor molasses with real dark chocolate tones. Sweet almost berry thing is there too. Feel is smooth and thicker on liquid. Carbonation is low, but that seems appropriate. Overall pretty nice to drink. Nothing real crazy or outlandish, but still a nice brew.

Serving type: bottle

09-08-2008 16:17:00 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of WVbeergeek
WVbeergeek

Ohio

3.65/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Body appears pitch black absolutely opaque no light passing through at the edges. Nice sized mocha tan head forms thick and leaves behind fine lacing as it dwindles down, by the way I poured this into my Piraat chalice since I recently broke my Stone Imperial Stout chalice, pretty similar shape. This year's release seems to be keeping with the black beer theme, hoppy black IPA definitely wasn't my favorite new concept beer let's see if bitter dark chocolate infused oatmeal stouts work as well as it sounds.

Aroma upfront with bitter dark cocoa nibs, deep fruity ripened fruit notes including ripe plum and fig notes, touch of metallic mineral character blended with herbal hop blends just barely coming through in the nose.

Flavor is complex starts off with a tart twang seems out of place in something this dark, I was assuming there would be more roasted malt character off the bat. Somewhat lactic creamy notes with oatmeal softness coming into play. Definitely finishes with big luscious dark bitter chocolate notes and welcome hop burps arise after your first few sips even thought not much hop action is going on in the actual flavor or aroma. As it warms alcohol becomes a welcome flavor component that seems to offset some of the sweet and tart fruit notes from the pure bitterness of the dark chocolate added. Oatmeal also plays as a buffer between the chocolate and sweet fruit undertones.

Carbonation level is mellow, dark dry bitterness is definitely left on the palate after each sip. An overall medium to full body with creamy edges to it the entire 22 ounce portion. By the way, I would recommend to split this large portion with friends and let the beer warm up a bit to let all of the flavors and textures come out.

This Stone 12th offering serves up some surprises, keeping it original and unique as usual I would definitely recommend the experience. Is it something that I will be chasing down like the Stone 10th no way but was it tasty and complex...of course. I see what the folks at Stone were trying to pull off and guess I like the blurb on the label about hop shortages and turning to the bitterness of dark chocolate versus hops, so I see the vision but taste for yourself whether or not it works.

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2008 15:22:11 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of Gavage
Gavage

New Jersey

4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: black in color with a 2" head that slowly falls. Some spotty lace develops.

Smell: bitter chocolate, light alcohol, and roasted malts are bold and provides an enjoyable aroma.

Taste: roasted malts, bitter chocolates, alcohol, prunes, molasses, and oats. Bitterness is hearty and creates a balanced beer.

Mouthfeel: smooth and silky throughout. Very long roasted malt and bitter chocolate aftertaste. Heavy bodied beer.

Drinkability: very tasty brew but alcohol levels leave this as a slow sipper and no more than one bottle per session. Nice tasty beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2008 12:17:49 | More by Gavage
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Stone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout from Stone Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 836 ratings.