Stone 09.09.09 Vertical Epic Ale - Stone Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 821 | Reviews: 531 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by sweetbrew82:
3.6/5 rDev -11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3
22 oz. into a pint glass
P: Jet black and almost completely opaque in the glass with a beautiful head of thick, creamy foam that holds firm and stays impressively dense. Displays some gorgeous dimples as it sinks with a rocky texture. Shows excellent retention before settling to a thin cap on top with some thick sheets of lace.
A: Huge blasts of lightly roasted malts that lend a chocolatey/mocha espresso character. Lots of vanilla in here as well, along with some subtle oak, zesty citrus peel, dark fruits, and a healthy amount of clove from the Belgian yeast. Boy, I really don't get the impression that this is a Belgian Strong Dark Ale. This smells much more along the lines of an 'Imperial Belgian Porter'...
T: ...and it tastes like it too! Although, who the hell am I to say what style it is! It starts out as more of a traditional American Porter with lightly roasted malts that just ooze that same chocolatey/mocha espresso flavor, while sweet vanilla notes and dark fruits ride right underneath with subtle hints of oak peeking through nicely. Then in the middle, the Belgian yeast seems to grab this beer by the horns and transform it into an 'Imperial Belgian Porter' by imparting a slightly powdery yeast that emits that unmistakable clove flavor, along with banana and some dark fruits as well. On the back end, the addition of tangerine peels really comes to the forefront with a bittering astringency (also probably from hops) that tastes like tangerine peels dipped in chocolate and sprinkled with clove. Leaves a bitter citrusy, yeasty aftertaste that hangs on for a while.
M: This edition of Vertical Epic is medium-full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation that seems to keep it from being as silky smooth and luxuriously rich as it could be. It does have some nice creaminess under the prickles, though. While it's not chewy, it does stick to the palate enough for the flavor to grab traction.
Notes: This is a pretty good Imperial Belgian Porter. However, it seems as if the flavors are kind of disjointed in spots and never really melds together to form one cohesive unit, which hurts the flavor score. I love the sweet start, but the bitter, citrusy astringency in the back half of the mouthful becomes distracting after a while, which also makes the drinkability of this one suffer a bit as well. Good thing the fine folks at Stone brewed this one with the intention to cellar, because I think it could develop quite nicely. Maybe with some age on it, the flavors will work together more harmoniously and the bitter citric notes will calm down a bit. Here's to hoping!
Serving type: bottle
09-21-2009 23:27:22 | More by sweetbrew82
More User Reviews:
4.18/5 rDev +2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Poured into a Stone snifter
A- pours a nearly pitch black color with a small khaki colored foamy head that reduces to a ring around the edges
S- chocolaty malt with some charred malt aroma, sweet vanilla with some fruity hop aroma, burnt sugar
T- fruity yeast mixes with some sweet dark chocolaty notes up front, hints of vanilla, orange peel and burnt sugar, chocolate continues to linger on the palate long after finishing with some lingering woodsy notes that compliments it nicely
M- medium body and carbonation lead to a foamy mouthfeel and a foamy , dry finish, just a hint of lingering alcohol
O- the chocolate malt is enhanced by the additional of vanilla, fruity yeast notes add a nice dimension
Serving type: bottle
07-20-2014 01:50:34 | More by Treyliff
3.61/5 rDev -11.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
22oz into a pint
A - Brown with amber highlights. mocha head.
S - Some very nutty notes in the nose.
T- Comes off that it has sat too long. The edge is off all the flavors I think matter. The hopiness has turned offly grassy in the middle.
M - Moderate mouthfeel, lightly sticky.
O - Would have been better a while back.
Serving type: bottle
02-13-2014 01:58:23 | More by katan
Stone 09.09.09 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 821 ratings.