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

Not Rated.
Stone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal StoutStone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout

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BA SCORE
92
outstanding

853 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 853
Reviews: 699
rAvg: 4.12
pDev: 10.44%
Wants: 82
Gots: 76 | FT: 4
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: 853 | Reviews: 699 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of barleywinefiend
3.48/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had on tap at JJ Brewskys along with my Old Viscosity, Saucerful of Merkin.
I previusly rated the bottle and now the tap. It came to me in a pint glass, ddep brown in the light as I sat outside, very small tan head to this brew. Nose was hot, cocoa and oats. Taste was a bit smoother than the bottle but this beer is still to hot and it masks the great flavor hiding in it. Mouthfeel was chocolatey and too boozy for me. Almost a pain more than a pleasure to drink.

Photo of wl0307
4.05/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Purchased from a very good Britain-based beer shop, "Beers of Europe", through on-line order. Coming in a light brown, 1 Pt. 6Fl. Oz. bomber bottle, bottled in July 2008, served cool in Hapkin's branded bulb-shaped sniffer.

A: pours the darkest (blackest) colour I've seen for any stout, topped with a dark brown creamy froth that retains the body elegantly, with uneven lacing behind.
S: aromatic without being imposing, the nose is full of vanilla-scented chocolates, sweet black dates, "breezy" fragrant US hops, licorice, sweet ground nuts, and faint alc. In some ways tis not as complex as Stone IRS, and slightly sweeter as well due to the chocolates I'm sure, but overall still promising and pleasant.
T: the lubricating-ly smooth foretaste of semi-sweet chocolate-milk-like maltiness expands with a lovely aromatic undertone mixed of roasted walnuts, black dates, oily-flowery hops, then the impact of bitter chocolates and hops deepens with a lively bitter, semi-chewy and herbal mouthfeel in the end, as well as a residual vanilla scent, roastiness and a key tinge of sourness as of truly bitter chocolates (90%?) rather than coffee beans. Unlike one's usual American hoppy ales, the bitter finish here is attributed more to chocolates than to hops, and this has already been anticipated since I had a glance of the beer's name.
M&D: lubricating on the mouthfeel with only mild carbonation, the palate is absolutely spot'on for such a potent stout to be enjoyed. Full-bodied, richly-flavoured, showing a light hint of alc., while on the whole a delicate balance is still retained b/w the heavy maltiness and lighter hoppiness thanks to the intervention of chocolate aroma and its indispensable sour tinge. Using bitter chocolates is a good idea, I think, to render a different type of bitter and sour elements on top of the overall decent performance of a quality dark ale.

Photo of DoubleJ
4.33/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

What will one year of age do to this beer? On to the beer:

Pours thick into my Guinness pint glass. Super tanned espresso head sits on top this invincible black bodied beer. The aroma beings up good sweet flavors. Chcocolate syrup anyone? There is a hoppy character in its background, as is roasted coffee.

Semi-sweet chocolatey! There's a bit of roastiness hitting and sticking to palate midway. It has a very dominating chocolate flavor working in its favor, hardly anything bitter about it. I don't really taste the oatmeal, but it could explain the "lighter" than imperial feel, not that its a bad thing in this case. Somewhat charred. There is some fusel alcohol felt as the beer closes to a finish, but it is washed away by faint coffee and heavier sweet chocolate.

If you have this beer in your possession, it will be good right now. Drinkable without weighing you down, and plenty to satisfy that sweetooth without becoming cloying. Okay....what I'm trying to say is...bring this back for another round!

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

A 650 mL bottle purchased at Joseph's Beverage in Toledo, OH.

A: The stout is rather viscous, thick and oily as it pours into my snifter. A coffee-and-cream colored head, darkened a bit by milk chocolate brown, rises up on pour and quickly dissapates.

S: The nose is very chocolatey, thick with a strong burnt presence. A deep nutty aroma mixes with alcohol and syrupy chocolate to create a rich complexity.

T: At room temperature, the stout is a mouthfull. Dark roasted notes go head-to-head with dark chocolate. Cocoa powder and fuller baker's chocolate round out the flavor. Dark espresso, think Starbucks-level bitterness, coats the back of the mouth, full, dark and delicious. The oatmeal creates a smoothness just before the espresso turns bitter. Coffee and baker's chocolate are the finish.

M: The ale is complex, hot and boozy with a coffee/chocolate punch. The beer is a mouthfull, a challenge to get through.

D: One bomber at a time, the strength and intrigue of the beer won't allow any more.

Photo of Zorro
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours and looks like used 10-40W motor oil, promising.

Light proof black beer with a small brown head, oh yeah it's not a porter.

Bittersweet scent that you can smell from a distance. Getting up close this is a boozy bittersweet chocolate beer with a hint of vanilla, berries and wood. Strongly scented with chocolate almost a dark chocolate bar in beer form.

Taste starts out sweet and chocolate with a silky mouth feel a lot like melted chocolate. A little sweet and a little bitter with a trace of coffee and malt char in the flavor. Big vanilla flavor so I suspect white oak or Bourbon was involved somehow. British Ale fruity flavors show as the beer warms up quite a bit. Alcohol completely hidden.

Mouthfeel is silk.

Don't give many 5s but this beer deserves it for drinkability. At room temperature and this just keeps getting tastier! Smooth as sin, really close to drinking expensive chocolate instead of eating it. Think best chocolate beer ever.

Photo of rhoadsrage
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a Nonic)

A- This beer pours a jet black body with a few tiny bubbles stuck to the edge of the glass. There is a sticky chocolate mile colored head that last and last.

S- The deep coffee roasted malt aroma has a slight cream smell to it with a faint coco powder hint when it is pretty warm.

T- The big roasted black malt flavor is inky with a faint tartness that becomes more earthy like oatmeal as the beer warms. There is a slight vinous note at the finish with a black roasted grain bitterness that is smooth but lingers. As the beer warms the tartness grows and the chocolate notes start to fill the finish.

M- The medium-full mouthfeel is almost slippery in texture with a fusel alcohol heat that is soon overpowered by flavor as the beer warms.

D- This is a big black stout with nice flavor but the chocolate is note very distinct until the beer warms a good amount.

Photo of Stinkypuss
2.7/5  rDev -34.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A. Poured at cellar temperature from a bomber into a pint glass. Dark brown syrup with a light brown head. No lace.

S. Alcohol, Oats, slight bakers chocolate, light expresso.

T. There is a small hop bitterness followed by a strong boozy note accented by chocolate. Its not very good actually. Way too young.

M. Leaves a strong bitter alcohal lingering taste, like after drinking liqour.

D. This is average drinking at best. It only scores points for giving me a buzz, which I did in fact desire after this disappointment.

Age the hell out of this one!

Photo of DrBier
4/5  rDev -2.9%

Photo of Mebuzzard
3.9/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a very black liquid, which I love for the most part. The glossy brown, semi-dense head looks like cocoa powder sprinkled on top. Looks good, would like to see better head (Hey-Ooo)

Anyway, aroma isn't quite there. Some roasted malt, hints of coffee and the faint lingering of chocolate (perhaps just because the name suggests it).
Good roasted flavor. A good stout. Again, faint coffee and chocolate characteristics. Bitter? Just a bit. Chocolate? Just a bit. This is a good drinking beer, not quite a great beer. Hopefully it will age well.

Photo of brandoman63
4/5  rDev -2.9%

Photo of iL0VEbeer
3.75/5  rDev -9%

Photo of Wasatch
4.33/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks goes out to cstrack for this brew.

Poured into a Stone glass a nice black color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy tan head, which leaves some sticky lacing behind. The nose is slightly sweet, malty, dark chocolate. The taste is slightly sweet, big malts, lots of bitter chocolate. Medium body. Very drinkable, this is a very tasty brew. Thanks Casey.

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

Another impressive beer from Stone, reminding me very much of the RIS, but with (predictably) more of a chocolate overtone.

On tap at Mahaffey's the other day.

The beer pours a solid black color with persistent, chocolate/coffee colored head. Head retention is pretty good and there is good sticky lacing. The nose on this beer is pretty complex, with coffee, cherry, vanilla, chocolate, some roastiness and licorise. The flavors on the palate generally replicate the nose, except the licorise is even more pronounced. The beer has a sizable presence on the palate and tastes like a big beer (which of course, it is). While moderately sweet initially, the hops come on strong at the end, giving the beer almost a grainy mouthfeel. The beer finishes fairly dry, and frankly is a bit heavy and tiring. I think the finish hurts this beers drinkability just a bit, though it's certainly an impressive effort from Stone. I get the impression that this one may improve considerably with age, not unlike the Stone RIS. Still a solid beer.

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

Charred steak dressed with a most thorough and unbending tone of black. There may be just the slightest glint of crimson when held directly into the light but it's quite hard to produce. This is the physical definition of the word 'opaque'. A bold, ebony trim delineates the beer's contour and with any agitation will wash over the surface with a thickset bed of foam.

This smells an awfully lot like a good, homemade Mexican mole dish; I can't seem to shake this scent of cocoa beans and spicy chillies (part of that may just be the alcohol giving you fair warning!) Although I also detect notes of coffee, black licorice, browned sugar and tiramisu, more than anything this resembles a mole recipe that combines cocoa and dark chocolate, peanuts and blanched almonds, caramelized shallots, chipotle, ancho and mulato chillies.

The oatmeal has made for an oily slick and creamy full mouthfeel. It's amazing the level of elegance this can have considering it's also a high alcohol and heavy roasted stout. The alcohol is never tasted but is omnipotent nevertheless. In aroma and taste - especially reaching room temperature - the warming sensation can sometimes reach a scathing level.

The flavour isn't nearly as dominated by bitter chocolate as the beer's name and bottle might have you believe - I would have pegged tiramisu before that. This foremost tastes like an Imperial Stout. It has a prominent foreground of roasted malts with the backdrop of dark caramel, creme brulee, toffee biscuits, flat coffee and over-ripe black currants. Come to think, with a cast of flavours like that it's no surprise the chocolate isn't more pronounced.

Despite this gracefully silky smooth texture I don't think drinking a whole bomber to one's self is feasible. Granted, the beer is as elegant as it is dark but it's also a little more strong than it is flavorful. Pairing this alongside some rich desserts not only sounds decadent, it's starting to seem necessary. Listening to my own advice, I've now paired this with some dark chocolate truffles and you can read my lips: Y-U-M!

Stone's Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout is certainly deserving of it's special anniversary ale merit. There is a certain "je ne sais quoi" about it that you know you're drinking something special. If you're planning to serve something decadent for after dinner than including this would probably double the decadence. I know that the people at Stone realize pairing drink with food is important and so I'm glad they've decided not to skip out on dessert!

Photo of rab53
5/5  rDev +21.4%

Photo of ppoitras
3.63/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle purchased as a single from Yankee Spirits, Sturbridge, MA.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/4" dark brown head over the opaque dark brown/black brew. Head is promptly down to a thin layer of tiny bubbles, with slow-falling sticky lace. Aroma is rich dark oatmeal sweetness. Taste is sweet chocolate to start, but quickly overpowered by burnt oats, which give way to bitterness and alcohol at the close. Mouthfeel is a bit harsh, and drinkability is limited for me by same. Just a little too brash for me, even if it lives up to its name, and is just what the brewers wanted. Guess this time, I'm not as worthy as I could be...

Photo of Kelp
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of billab914
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into my Stone RIS glass. Poured thick and black in color with a full, dense, mocha head to it. The head faded down to a very thin ring around the edges of the glass after a minute or so and left minimal lacing.

The aroma has a good amount of bitter-sweet chocolate to it with the oats lending a smoothness. It has some hints of roasty and coffee flavors but they take a backseat to the oats and chocolate.

The taste starts with a more of sweet chocolate and cocoa flavor but quickly starts to show more of the bitter chocolate, coffee and roasty flavors. A strong bitter chocolate, burnt, roasty flavor really starts to come through even stronger well into the finish and lingers on the palate. The oats smooth it out and give it a some nice flavor as well. Very tasty beer overall.

The mouthfeel is on the thicker side and carbonation a little below average. Drinkability is good, it had some great flavors to it and was a pleasure to sip on this evening. The oats and the bitter chocolate came together very nicely to create a very good tasting and smooth beer. Excellent beer overall.

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.15/5  rDev +0.7%

Photo of PEIhop
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a tulip glass.

A - Pours beautiful pitch black with low carbonation.

S - A molasses aroma dominants all other smells. There are subtle cocoa notes that arrive late during inhalation.

T - Very bold, almost invasive, alcohol during the initial phase of tasting. The middle of the taste has a funky, indistinguishable taste for my palate. The finish has a subtle, but nice, oatmeal favor.

M - Creamy and light for this style.

D - Great for an extremely, BITTERLY cold New England winter day. Drinkability only suffers because of the intense alcohol notes.

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.08/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 picked up today at the Coop for about $6.80... poured into my shaped Sam Adams glass.

The pour was beautiful with a pretty reverse cascade thing going on.. 2 finger head is very dark brown.. even for a big stout... brew is very very dark... no light escapes... nice lacing.. dries leaving crusty bubbles.

Aroma is deep.. coffee and chocolate... smell improves immensely as it warms.. melted dark chocolate and cocoa nibs... yummy... even smells smooth and creamy... somewhat more stout characteristics appear than the expected chocolate.

Flavor is huge... I honestly was not expecting something this rich... The bitterness is also huge.. but it's not a hop bitterness.. more of an astringent (not in a bad way) cocoa presence... like a strong espresso with a couple squares of Hershey's dark melted and mixed in. Yeasty fruitiness raises its head slightly above water as it warms up a bit.. a little bit of dried cherry but still subdued and buried by the roasty/chocolate characteristics... a little bit black licorice note is barely distinguishable... mouthfeel is fairly thick but not chewy.. I like it.. very very smooth and coating... Despite reservations, I am leaving the drinkability fairly high not because I want another glass, but because I want another sip and I want "this" glass to last.

I don't know how this will age.. but I am going to pick up my share for the cellar and then drink these often until they're gone... really a very very good brew.. that said, I really hope the hop shortage is gone by next spring/summer.... I hope Stone comes out swinging with a massive triple IPA.

Photo of Viggo
3.73/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I remember fartingdog bringing this over but can't remember if it was from him or not. Thanks! Also had a glass at the brewpub a couple days before.

Pours an opaque dark brown, almost black, thin tan head forms, quickly settles to a flimsy ring, some lace spots. Smell is licorice and chocolate, some roast, caramel, oats, biscuit, alcohol, bit of fruitiness, kind of interesting. Taste is quite sweet, licorice, chocolate milk, toffee, some roast, oatmeal, biscuits, very malty beast, dark fruits and cherries, yeast, alcohol, decent balance in the finish, touch of roasty bitterness. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low carbonation, some warmth going down. Smooth for its strength, just didn't do much for me. Found it a bit too sweet and was expecting more of an intense chocolate rather than so much fruit.

Photo of DrJay
3.7/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Looks thick off the pour. Very dark brown foam that settled to a thin cap with some chunky bubbles forming a collar. Spotty lacing clung to the glass. The beer was pretty much black with very thin reddish edges. Big roasty coffee aroma initially, which gave way to notes of dried fruit, dry cocoa, burnt malt, slight licorice and booze. Balanced bitterness with a nice chocolate and roast flavour. Sweet malts filled out the middle. Fruit character appeared towards the end with alcohol rounding out the finish. Full bodied, but not heavy, with fine carbonation and creamy texture. Alcohol warmth. This one's tasty as it is, but it's still a bit young and hot. Some time in the cellar should smooth things out a bit. As it is, drink it a little on the warm side or let it warm up as you're drinking. It takes the edge off the alcohol and makes for a more pleasant drink.

Photo of Bighuge
3.3/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Inky black body. Thin coating of brown cream on top. Moderate amounts of lace are left behind. Aroma is chalk full of bittersweet chocolate, anise, rum soaked raisins and cherry. Flavor is some of the same, but also some fusel alcohol contributions that bring it down. A little too much heat for my liking. Didn't expect this much from a 9.2 beer. But other than that, there is the bitter chocolate notes and anise oil and coffee. Body is medium at best and carbonation fairly low, which doesn't detract from the experience. Not one that'd I'd need more of anytime soon.

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

Pours a dark brown/black with a decent sized tan head that impales itself to the inside of the glass as I drink in its chocolaty goodness. Smells of roasted malts, and bitter chocolate. Hints of citrus hops hide in the background. Taste is bitter roast and chocolate, a little bit of alcohol, more as it warms. Mouthfeel is silky smooth and very creamy. Thick body with light carbonation. Another fantastic brew from Stone, I'm going to try to put a bottle away to see how this one ages.

Stone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout from Stone Brewing Co.
92 out of 100 based on 853 ratings.