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Stone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Stone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic AleStone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

484 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 484
Hads: 790
Avg: 3.99
pDev: 13.03%
Wants: 42
Gots: 219 | FT: 16
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian IPA |  8.60% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: froghop on 08-04-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

The Stone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic Ale is a Strong Golden Belgian style ale highly hopped with American hops (Ahtanum, Amarillo and Simcoe). The beer pours pale golden with a thick and creamy white head of foam. The aroma is full of depth: nuances of pepper, clove, and banana from the Belgian yeast strain, and the resiny citrus notes from the American hops blend together nicely to provide a complex aromatic character. The taste is spicy, hoppy and fruity, with a very dry and a pleasant bitter end. The bitterness lingers nicely, and provides a refreshing finish that leads you to want to drink more and more of this beer!
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 484 | Hads: 790
Photo of dragonWhale
3.96/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very nice, very nice. Before looking this up to review I thought I was sippin on a hoppy saison. A brilliant gold, quite clear. Estery, can'tquiteputmyfingeronit goodness. Not much Americohop presence. Very floral hops, grassy too. Nothing in the way of citrus and pine. Classy. I mean $150/hr whore classy. Very tasty with a giant alcohol finish, especially for the mere 8.6 and the 2 years that this has sat dormant, awaiting execution. Delicious. My last bottle. Had to throw it back on the wants..

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Photo of mltobin
3.95/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked this up at Whole Foods Bowery.

Appearance is a hazy golden color with a thin white head.
Smell contains belgian yeast, some citrus, banana. Taste is sweet, grapefruit comes across, also some acidity, along with candied sugar. MF starts off smooth, and then picks as the sip continues & dry in the finish. Drinkability is very good on this Belgian IPA from Stone. One of my personal favorites from the few that I have consumed from the Vertical Epic series.

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Photo of Eriktheipaman
4.01/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pretty glad I found this for $7 with two years already on it!

Pours a golden amber aith white head that fades quickly to almost nothing (probably because the alcohol is 8.6%)Leaves nice lacing though.

Smell isnt over powering but of lemon and orange. I think the yeast contributes a lot to the smell.

Taste and mouthfeel are great! It tastes like a citrus foreward IPA but semi subdued. The bottle conditioning makes for a great smooth creamy mouthfeel and covers the alcohol quite a bit.

Im gonna go pick up this and the 09 to let sit for another year!

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Photo of DrinkingDrake
3.87/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Drank 12.29.10 after sitting in a low 50's basement for 2 years.

Golden hazy yellow. Straw. Thick frothy head.

Very fruity tart apple aroma with a solid yeasty honey background. A tangy amount of floral/resin hops brings up the rear.

Sips with a nice little tang at first but is very fruity and smooth with a nice Belgian kick in the back. Estery and full of fruity hop notes that are subtle but leave a fruity dryness like a champagne.

Drinks juicy and light with a great bubble tingle.

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Photo of YouSkeete
3.8/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Found this guy at my hometowns liquor store last week. Why this hole-in-the-wall have a two-year old Stone... I'll never know.

A: Cloudy bright yellow with a very slight orange tint, medium white head, lots of lacing.

S: Smooth and dry malt sweetness, large fruity body, and lots of honey sweetness. Yeast and Belgian hops are strong, but not heavy in the nose.

M: Fruity sweetness, and a boat load of bready pilsner malts, both dry and bitter yet rich and flavorful. Fruits consist of maybe apples, oranges, bananas; definitely on the lighter side. Floral notes are noticed, along with some grain and wheat undertones. Finishes syrupy and sticky.

M: Medium body with medium carbonation. Moderately nice finish. I have to admit i feel like there is something missing, but i can't put a finger on it.

D: definitely a great tasting brew, but not my favorite out of the VE Series.

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Photo of Boto
4.2/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber: This one pours an almost clear golden color. There was a skall white head that didn't linger or leave any lacing. The aroma is nice. Some peppery spices, orange, lemon, yeastiness to the nose. The flavor is good. Somewhat like a tripel, but some hop bitterness to the finish. Some yeast, lemon, clove, orange, spiciness to the taste. Dry finish. Nice!

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Photo of DovaliHops
4.32/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very slightly hazy golden color with a medium-small white head that disappears quickly. Scent is Belgian yeast, lemongrass, a little bit of hoppiness left, apples, spices, orange peel, and pear. Lots of fruitiness going on. Taste quite delicious. All the fruitiness is very present in the taste, but the hoppiness has faded away completely it seems like...maybe not completely, but damn near close. Tons of apple and pear flavors. I also get some white grape flavors that are comparable to 10-10-10. The lemon zest lingers on the palate after every sip along with some pleasant spiciness and a bit of alcohol warmth. Mouthfeel is full-bodied and crisp. Drinkability is high. I never had this beer fresh when it was released over 2 years ago, but I think it's drinking very well right now. Gonna save the other bottle for the Epic 2012 vertical!

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Photo of metter98
3.85/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is hazy golden yellow in color and poured with a thin white head that quickly disappeared, leaving lacy patterns of bubbles floating on the surface.
S: There are light to moderate aromas of oranges and spices in the nose; hints of grapefruit and yeast are also discernible.
T: Like the smell, citrus and spicy flavors dominate the overall taste, overshadowing the underlying malts. The finish has a moderate amount of bitterness from the hops.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. There is some dryness in the finish and some hints of warming from the alcohol.
D: This is a beer that needs to be slowly sipped given its alcohol content and the amount of bitterness.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.9/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear, bright, yellow-hued body underneath a tall, white head fed by sustained streams of fine carbonation.

Smell: Light pale malts with some small, sweetish hints, touches of florals, peaches, less-than-dry white wine and with citrusy notes of American hops, though understandably a bit curtailed from two years of quite aging in the keg.

Taste: Pale lightly malted barley with sweet, honeyed traces to it, welcoming in fruit accents of peaches, apples, grapefruits, and white grapes. Subtle florals. Medium level of hop bitterness remaining two years out pairs with the spicy clove-like phenols. Noticed vein of alcohol running through this brew. Finishes dry, warming, and fruity.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation. Slight overall stickiness to the mouthfeel.

Drinkability: 08.08.08 runs in line with others of its ilk, like Duvel Triple Hop or Urthel Hop-It, though I'd like it with a skosh more carbonation to it to keep things moving in the mouth. Still pretty nice, though.

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Photo of FosterJM
4.2/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

38th review on BA
bottle to tulip

App- Orange hazy sunset color with 2 finger off white head that loudly fizzled down the glass.

Smell- Huge hop notes with citrus and spice notes and that belgian strain coming through quite nicely.

Taste- This is a smooth IPA. I am very happy I found this laying around. It's slightly sweet with a flavor I just cant put my finger on but it wants me to keep drinking. Stone is very good at this Vertical series. I really want them all, too bad 02 is $750 on ebay right now.

Mouth- It's sweet but not too in your face. I find it to be a delicate balance of flavors but comes through quite nicely.

Drink- Keep this one coming. I wish they made this a full time selection. I am off to find another one to age till the VE series is over.

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Photo of akorsak
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The midway point, my VE hump day.

A: The Belgian IPA is a pale golden color, quite translucent. Very little in the way of head, a few wispy strands.

S: The nose, ahh the sweet blend of tripel botanicals, strong hops and a twang of Belgian yeast. The best smeller of the night.

T: The hops are off a step, this being 2 years old and all. Luckily the tripel spices are lively and sharp. Coriander, pears and pepper create a complex flavor that coaxes the last remaining citrus oomph out of the hops. The yeast strain adds additional sweetness that, along with the hops and tripel, lend a gritty bite to the ale.

M: The mouthfeel is a study in contrasts, the bite of the hops, the sweetness of the yeast, the strength of the tripel. My favorite of the night.

D: Another whopper, too strong for its own good. I wouldn't hesitate to have a few more pints, a Belgian IPA that has aged nicely.

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Photo of Phelps
4.02/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Looks: like liquid gold. The beer pours from the bottle a resplendent golden-orange, almost completely opaque, with a tiny head of pure white composed of fizzy soda bubbles that effervesce quickly, leaving a tiny lingering ring. No lacing to speak of.

Smells: some hops remain, imparting citrusy orange flavors. Very spicy. Coriander, pears, lemon, red apples, white peppercorns. It's odd, almost like breathing spiciness. I can feel a heat in the back of my throat as I breath in.

Tastes: enduring. Though the years have performed their work on the hops in the nose, it's amazing how well they've held up in the flavor. This is a Belgian IPA if I've ever had one. Starts fruity, with flavors of pear juice, banana, clove and maybe even some floral lavender. Then a blast of bitter, citrusy hops, with orange juice lemon zest. The flavor of sweet orange creamsicles hits at the swallow before an oddly dry finish.

Feels: whipped. Lightly carbonated, medium-bodied and pillow-soft. It's nice to just swish around the mouth.

Drinks: For a two-year-old Belgian IPA, this is exquisite. Still fruity, still hoppy, still complex. I'm not confident my second bottle will hold up until 2012, but we'll see.

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Photo of caddybuyer
3.88/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Life is short, why wait until 2012. This is a re-review with a more favorable outcome.

A-pale straw with a copper tinge, with a thin white head with nice lacing.

S-Belgian yeast, grass, musk, saddle, and a hint of lemon and bananna and a bit of alcohol in the background. Very little hop aroma detected.

T-Belgian tripel yeast, fresh green apple, a hint of green grape juice, pear and corriander. Dry finish with herbal peppery hops leading the way out. The watchword here is "crisp". ABV is well hidden, and the complexity of this ale begins to shine as it warms. I expected this to be a much more highly hopped ale, and perhaps it was when it was young. It has mellowed into a very nice tripel, however, and while this is not my favorite style, I can appreciate that this is well done. In any case, this is much better than it was a year ago

M-Medium mouthfeel and carbonation

D-This is a pretty drinkable beer, and one that could sneak up on you given the ABV. .I think the Cali-Belgique hits closer to home for the West Coast meets Belgian thing, but this is a pretty nice effort.

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Photo of kwjd
3.8/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a golden orange colour with some white head and nice enough lacing. Smells like spicy Belgian yeast with some citrus notes. Flavour has a kick of bitterness, but also a very dry flavour to it. Nice carbonation and easy to finish off my half of the bomber.

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Photo of Sammy
4.09/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma is like a saison, getting pepper first of all, clove and bannanas. Golden blond colour with white Caesar head. Understated hops, lemon rind. Above average mouthfeel. Good drinkability.I think the yeast will fade out in a couple years which make it even more interesting, take the edge off the yeast.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.2/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Brick Store Pub. Pours a nice golden with a fairly short head but nice lacing. The smell is fairly light but with some nice earthy and citrusy hops. Tastes big and piney with some cream and citrus, especially on the finish. Creamy and smooth in the mouth, with a bit of prickliness at the end. Overall it's pretty nice, I particularly like the orange and cream finish- makes it taste a little like a hoppy creamsicle!

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Photo of beerwolf77
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to blackearth for busting this one out of the cellar.

Poured from a bottle into my glass.

A: bright golden yellow, small white head, light soapy lace

S: sweet doughy malt, solid amount of of citrus, heavy on the oranges, light pine mixed in

T: very similar to the nose, orange essence yellow cupcakes cup to mind

M: medium body with mild carbonation

D: overall this is astyle that I just don't get. Well I get this one. Very flavorful and drinkable. I would have no problem finishing a bomber myself.

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Photo of beermanbrian
4.2/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One from my case purchased and cellared since 08. Nice dark golden color. On the cloudy side. Thin wispy head that manages to trail spotty lace. Smell is sugary with some whisky burn in the background. Hops is much more subdued than when this was fresh. Taste is a great mix of sweet up front with bitterness on the finish. It has matured nicely and mellowed considerable since it was fresh. Nothing less than what I would expect from Stone.

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Photo of bilyboy65
4.46/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is a fantastic release yet again. 2 years old now and still fresh. I wish I had tried one in '08 to compare it too.

A: Slightly cloudy, light amber with a pure white head. Lacing that coats the glass and a heavy film left behind. Decent carbonation to keep the head around after 2 years as well.

S: Hoppy bitterness jumps out at you with a sweet malty scent to follow right behind. Tying it together seems to be a yeasty scent riding the hops to your nose. All works together to make a very nice nose.

T: Very well balanced flavor between the hops, malts and yeast. Some pulls seem to have the sweet malts dominate and others the hops. The yeast seems to just be there to act as a blending agent. Very nice.

M: Dry medium bodied beer.

D: 22oz bottle is gone before I finished this review. :)

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Photo of ZX6Chris
4.27/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Shared at a Vertical Epic tasting with my friend Armand.

A-Good head, White bubbles that are larger the the previous Epic's, dissipates quickly, golden straw yellow.

S-Hop aroma, piney, citrusy.

T-Flavor follows through, a little grassy.

D-Good drinker, big flavors but very smooth.

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Photo of silentjay
4.02/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pours a clear, translucent copper with a smallish off-white head that quickly recedes to a small film, but laces well.

some peppery, fruity aromas hints at a belgian yeast while some citrusy and grassy hops back things up a bit. bananas and cloves, yah, but plenty more. Traces of a belgian tripel, but with some hops as well. not bad at all.

taste is similar to the aroma, but also adds some malts to the package. peppery and fruity with banana, clove, plum, raisin, and apple flavors added to the wheat toast and caramel malts which give way to some grassy, citrus, and earthy hops, which have probably faded a bit over the last two years. a bit of warming booze comes through on the back end. nice.

medium bodied with ample carbonation and a nice lingering bitterness.

drinks rather well. booze can be harsh at times, even though its been aged for two years. that may age out in the next couple of years when the vertical is complete. otherwise, this is a nice, hoppy tripel with plenty of complexity and flavor. will look forward to trying this again in a couple of years.

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Photo of mdfb79
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a tulip.

a - Pours a nice golden-amber color with high carbonation evident and one finger of off white head that doesn't last very long.

s - Smells of bananas, cloves, spices, yeast, and sticky sweet fruit malts. Some citrus came out as it warms up.

t - Tastes of bananas, citrus hops, grapefruit, oragne, spice, and yeast. A tiny bit of bitterness, but not much. More fruity malts as it warms up.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Smooth and easy to drink for 8.6%.

d - The bottle says it is a Belgian tripel, while BA says it's a Belgian IPA, and I can see both sides of it. I thought it smelled pretty good and definitely like a tripel, as it didn't have a lot of hops. The taste however actually still had a lot of hops to it. Either way, it was an enjoyable beer I'd try again. Interested to see what'll happen in 2 more years.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.88/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Sloeber tulip glass.

Big thanks to GoGriz for this bottle!

I missed out on this one the first time 'round. This is why trading was invented. It pours a slightly hazed golden straw topped by a finger or so of white foam. The nose comprises light hoppy grapefruit and pine, honey, ginger, clove, pepper, banana, and a light dusting of biscuit crumbs. The taste has the same elements, though the hops remain decently strong, the grapefruit blending into a lemony citrus nearer the back; and the honey is thicker, heavier, sweeter, and mixed with a dash of light caramel. The body is a heavy light/light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a fairly crisp finish. Overall, this has aged pretty nicely (I believe), with the hops still strong enough to matter and the balance pretty well-maintained.

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Photo of Chico1985
3.63/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I bought this right before the '09 VE came out, lets see how this is doing at 2 years old. Bomber poured into my new Chimay goblet.

Pours a nice rusty orange color with a small white head. Quickly turns to a small cap and ring, nice color though.

Smell seems pretty weak. Mostly getting a yeasty bread scent, and light fruit, lemon, and some booze.

Surprisingly still very hoppy. Lots of grapefruit, citrus, spice, sugar, candy and floral notes. Flavors and alcohol pack quite a punch the first couple sips but it's more enjoyable as it goes on, warming helps alot as well. Good, but seems a little messy overall.

Creamy, high carbonation, pretty dry and bitter. Booze taste is there the whole time but is toned down the more you finish.

I think Stone considers this a tripel but I definitely agree with the choice of Belgian IPA for style. The flavors are just about even with a huge IPA and a light Belgian. Taste is kinda crazy but a bomber wasn't too much of a problem. Hard to say how this will continue to age until 2012. I liked it enough to know I will pick up another bottle to age until then.

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Photo of dedrinker
3.78/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

An attractive golden hue with a soft white head.

Smells like spice, sweet bread, honey, and citrus.

Tastes like coriander, orange peel, and honey with a lingering hop bite, that has mellowed remarkably since it's first bottling. This is almost like your ordinary above average Belgian triple.

medium body with both a sweet and bitter hops finish. Great for spring and summer mornings.

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Stone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 484 ratings.