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Stone 09.09.09 Vertical Epic Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Stone 09.09.09 Vertical Epic AleStone 09.09.09 Vertical Epic Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

845 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 845
Reviews: 535
rAvg: 4.08
pDev: 10.54%
Wants: 34
Gots: 276 | FT: 16
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  8.60% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: superdedooperboy on 09-08-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

This is quite a complex and layered beer. Bold and smooth chocolate malt flavors combine with a Belgian yeast lending tropical fruit/banana flavors and hints of spiciness, all complemented by citrus notes from an addition of tangerine peel. Rich vanilla beans add a nice counter to the chocolate malt - actually enhancing the chocolatiness. The finish is smooth, with additional traces of vanilla and toasted characters from French Oak. The goal for this edition of the Stone Vertical Epic Ale series is to be reminiscent of artisanal chocolates accentuated with orange.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 845 | Reviews: 535 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of brotherloco
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of goalie33
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of mrebeka
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of Phelps
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looks: I was worried at first because the bottle released such a pitiful hiss of air when I removed the cap, I thought it might've gone flat. But, my fears were unfounded -- a bubbly, cappuccino-colored head rises to cap the liquid as I pour. The beer below is of the deepest purple, revealing cranberry highlights when held to a lamp. The head, now a simple but persistent ring, grips the sides of the glass tightly, leaving layers of lace.

Smells: interesting. Lots and lots of milk chocolate, sweet orange juice, plums, red wine, oak, and a hint of bananas.

Tastes: like a porter with Belgian yeast. A slight metallic tinge. Heavily roasted grains impart a chocolate char, while a surge of dark fruit sweetness hits at the swallow, while waves of chocolate and hop bitterness wash across the mouth in the aftermath. The bright flavors of orange peel, paired with the chocolate, are really working here. I'm still getting the faintest bit of grassy hops and even a little bit of vanilla and oak.

Feels: lightly carbonated, medium body, smooth. Love the way this rolls about the mouth. A slight warmth flows down the throat and warms the chest.

Drinks: Nearly a year of age seems to have done a bit of melding to this beer, and all the flavors seem to be in great balance. The sweetness never gets cloying; the bitterness never gets overpowering. Good across the board. I'm interested to see if the subtle fruit flavors remain when I open my second bottle in 2012.

Photo of thewimperoo
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of malfunxion
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of midlifec
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of Kaveman
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of Onenote81
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled on 2/15/10.

Bottle poured into a tulip glass. Pours a very thick dark black. No light is getting through this beer at all. A decent-sized tan head rests on top. Great retention; left lots of webbing on the glass. Scents of chocolate malts, some yeast, mulch, dark breads, and slight booze.

Great deep body here. Moderately carbonated with a rich full finish. Complex flavors including dark chocolate, black coffee, pipe tobacco, light yeast, and just hints of the booziness I found in the nose. This wasn't exactly what I was expecting, but it was surprising. What a treat! I've got another bottle I'm going to sit on awhile. I'm interested to see how some of these flavors develop.

Photo of DrJay
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very dark brown with ruby edges. Fine brown bubbles topped the beer, forming a thin cap. Great head retention and lots of lace. Chocolate and mild roast aromas, light hops, slightly phenolic, a bit of spice (ginger and cloves perhaps?), and vanilla. Malty flavour, again with chocolate and roast, vanilla, and spices. It still seems like a combination of ginger and cloves, but it's well balanced within the rest of the flavour profile. Some straight up malt sweetness, a little sugary, rather than toffee or caramel. Lingering licorice and chocolate. Medium to full bodied with fine carbonation, great texture. Very well hidden alcohol. This really straddles the line between a Belgian strong dark and a Belgian stout. Quite tasty and just right for a cool afternoon.

Photo of marct
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of unclejimbay
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Stone 09.09.09 Vertical Epic Ale
Stone Brewing Company
Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale
ABV: 8.90 %

reviewed 10/31/09 with CG and friends @ the JamMin bar... 22oz bomber>pint glass

4.0 in all catergories

Appearance is a dark opaque color with a nice tan 1 finger head that leaves a whisper of a lace collar.
Smells of dark malts, dark coffee/chocolate aormas on a malty base aroma.
Tastes as it smells on a solid dark malty backbone.
Mouthfeel is semi-slick, low carbonation with a full body.
Drinkability is better than I expected, delicious all around heavy brew, reminds me of an imperial stout. Take this one slow - it would have rated a 5.0 but is it too full bodied of a brew to officially be "sessionable". It's also kind of pricey @ ~8 a bomber. Share the bomber a friend or friends...

Photo of Burt
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of jpd7374
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of DoctorB2B
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of brewandbbq
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle from the cellar.

Pours opaque black with a one inch head of light brown. A slow retreat revealed a partial skim coat on the surface for the duration as well as some moderate lacing.

Aromatics lead off with bitter chocolate, charred malt, and toasted raisins. Hints of nougat, coffee, and spicy phenols follow through.

Full bodied with a chewy, tacky mouthfeel. Almost velvety.

Roasted malt, dark chocolate, and coffee grounds start the palate. Lightly smokey with plenty of char and mild acridity.

Finishes with lingering bitter chocolate, a hint of raisins, and warming alcohol.

The Belgian character is quite subdued here, and the beer drinks more like a solid Porter. Nevertheless, a more than worthy cellar candidate it would seem.

Photo of Buckeye982
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of nathanmiller
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of JoEBoBpr
4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip glass from a 22oz bomber.

A - Pours a nice dark brown color with a dark tan head. Some nice dense bubbles appear as well as some bigger ones. The head recedes quick down to t ring around the glass and some sparse bubbles hanging around. Looks almost like a stout.

S - I finally get some Belgian aromas. There are some nice clove hints with some nice vanilla spice as well. Nice malty grain and fresh baked bread notes. Slight amount of phenols also present. There are some boozy esters that come out as well as some nice brown sugar and some great marzipan like bread notes. There are some slight roasted notes on the nose but just faint.

T & M - Starts off with some nice sweet clove and malt and quickly kicks in with the roasted notes. Very nice and surprising. There are some nice burnt notes that intermingle with the more traditional Belgian yeast and malt flavors. There are nice chocolate and almost some coffee notes. Very surprising take on the style and IMO doesn't really taste like a BSDA. Its a bit too roasted and not as complex. The roasted character actually takes away some from the yeast. Its interesting and there are some boozy notes on the back end but I don't think I will be thinking of this when thinking of BSDA. The body is medium with some good carbonation and slight boozy warmth on the back end.

D - Drinkability is higher because the ABv isn't too crazy but I would rather have others for better examples of the style.

Photo of PittBeerGirl
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of MrGone
4/5  rDev -2%

Photo of sandiego67
4/5  rDev -2%

Stone 09.09.09 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
91 out of 100 based on 845 ratings.