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Stone 10.10.10 Vertical Epic Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Stone 10.10.10 Vertical Epic AleStone 10.10.10 Vertical Epic Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

937 Ratings
THE BROS
88
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 937
Reviews: 473
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 13.83%
Wants: 22
Gots: 421 | FT: 20
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Pale Ale |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: JohnGalt1 on 10-02-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

This ninth edition of our Stone Vertical Epic Ale series takes two interesting left turns. A Belgian-style golden triple is the starting point of this beer, but the first left turn is nearly immediate with the addition of dried chamomile flowers, triticale, and Belgian amber candi sugar. The second, and rather unusual left turn takes us half an hour up the road from Stone to Temecula courtesy of the addition of just-pressed Muscat, Gewurztraminer and Sauvignon Blanc grapes from our friends at South Coast Winery. As the Stone Vertical Epic Ale series has moved through the calendar, we found that the brewing schedule for a 10.10.10 release coincided nicely with the grape harvest, neatly providing an interesting twist in this epic ale.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 937 | Reviews: 473 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of cdbooth219
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber poured into goblet

A: Pours a deep gold with one finger of fluffy white head that dissipates slowly, leaving some nice lacing.

S: Smells of yeast, wine, grapes, spiciness and citrus. Kind of like a tripel mixed with white wine.

T: Starts off with wine and grape skin, followed by pale malts. Then comes the spicy, yeastiness. Finishes with citrus and floral notes. Very different.

M: Very dry and heavily carbonated with a medium body.

D: Its definitely a sipper, but I found each sip to be quite enjoyable.

Overall, this was a very unique brew and I personally found it to be quite enjoyable. I plan to grab another bottle and age it for a while, because with time I think this will be truly amazing.

Photo of mdfb79
3.28/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into my Duvel tulip.

a - Pours a transparent dark golden color with one finger of fluffy white head and moderate to high carbonation evident. Little bit of lacing on the glass.

s - Smells of spices, wine, grapes, yeast, light citrus, and some floral notes.

t - Tastes of wine and grapes, spices, pepper, yeast, fruity malts, and tart apple.

m - Medium body and high carbonation that stings the tongue.

d - A decent beer but not one of the better Vertical Epics. The smell and taste was very wine like, and it was too carbonated. Have another bottle I'll hold until 2012.

Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.96/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle split and poured into a Duvel tulip. 9.5% ABV, "Cellar at 55°F or below", no date.

Thanks to cjacobsen for this one in a trade as Stone has recently pulled from my market!

A - Thin powdery sediment floats in the otherwise clear goldenrod-colored brew. A loose off-white head has ok retention but doesn't leave much lace as it lowers.

S - Lemon citrus with white grapes is all over the nose. The chamomile pokes out nicely adding a little spice to the already spicy Belgian yeast aroma. A pinch of bugs in here? I get a very light funk to the nose - slight barnyard and wood. Awesome complexity and depth.

T - Not as complex or deep as the aroma but I like it regardless. Heavier on the chamomile with a bi dry grape flavor impeding on the Belgian yeast a little too much.

M - Medium-bodied, heavily carbonated and spicy with a bitter/spice finish that beckons for another sip. Inviting feel.

D - 10.10.10 asks to be split with it's complex, bold profile but gets better and better with each sip. A good installment in the Vertical series, I think I may pick up another bottle or two for aging next time I'm in Illinois.

Photo of bierguru
2/5  rDev -46.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

A -
clear copper medium to high carbonation pours with a thick white head fades really quick

S -
muscat grape sweet malts

T -
muscat grape sour sweet spice huge malt very slight hop
flavors to me felt mushed together no order

M -
fairly bubbly light on the tongue dries the mouth of a lot

D -
very disapointed with this brew didnt like it at all

Photo of cokes
3.42/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Clear honey colored with a rapidly dying white froth that eventually clings to the edge of the glass in large bubbles.
Chamomile- and powdered sugar- laced aromas, which blanket the underlying apricot, guava, and candied lemons. The grape/wine qualities arise as it warms, but carry similar fruitiness, just with an emphasis that they are grape-derived. The belgian yeast adds some stony, granite and ginger/allspice spiciness. Hops bring traces of earthy hay.
The taste closely follows the nose. Honey and powdered sugar upfront and throughout. Chamomile all over everything. The middle is full of tropical fruits (though hazier than the nose indicated), grapes further the grippy sweetness, and present as lemon and kiwi and grapefruit. Yeast is a bit chalky, adding concrete mix, ginger, and clove. Hops are hard to find, drowned out by the flailing chamomile florality.
The major flaw here is it's carbonation (which subsequently affects the taste). There's a bit of CO2 charge upfront, then it fizzles out, leaving a thickish syrup of wine and chamomile infused liquid. It's a curious mix, and seems to work to a degree, but it clots up and becomes a bit of a chore to drink. So many US-Belgian-styled beers fall into this overthick, undercarbed trap.
If this was bottle conditioned, I'd be considerably excited to lay this down and try again in a year and 11 months or so. Being that it isn't, I don't really see it improving much, as all of its flaws are carbonation-related. Though since I have another bottle, I do hope the chamomile gets less rambunctious.

Photo of benclimbs
3.24/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours yellow with zero head and a pretty much no lacing, no visible carbonation.

smell is nice very wine like - perfume, honeysuckle, and reisling wine - interesting, with a nice fruit yeast backbone.

taste is really dissapoiting, lagery harshness, orange peel + off sour homebrew hop profile with a dry, kind of medicinal sticky harshness, a little warmth from the alcohol...pretty nasty for a tripel

mouthfeel is ok - needed secondary champagne fermentation in the bottle, having it 'on lees' would have made this a bit better.

overall this is one of the most dissapointing beers i've had from stone, i dont feel like aging this will make it any better either.

Photo of DrDemento456
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Got to try this in a 5oz sample at D's.

A - Golden straw yellow with a mild bit of foam that clears rather quickly leaving no lace.

S - Smells like a typical Belgium strong ale. Notes of mild caked yeast and a bit of citrus. Very little hops.

T - Taste pretty balanced. The yeast isn't as overbearing as some Belgium's giving way to a citrus zest, mild apple and pear. Not bad.

M - I drank it pretty slow. Was the odd beer out left to be drank last in the sampler.

D - I got to hand it to stone they sure can make a Belgium beer tolerable. I actually got more flavors than most natural Belgium's but the yeast was still pretty strong in this one. Wouldn't seek out again but glad to try for 2 bucks.

Photo of DrinkingDrake
3.67/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy golden straw and very bubbly. A nice foamy and big bubbled head.

Smells spicy and sweet with a lot of lemon citrus. Yeasty and sparkling cider/wine tingle.

Tastes lightly malty and sweet with some champagne grape notes. Pretty spicy/zesty. Fruity apple and pear coming through the middle. Finishes with the zesty yeast kick.

Crispy and refreshing like an ice cold lemonade on a hot day but nothing I would want to drink a bunch of.

Photo of projectflam86
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours a light golden color with a thin white foam that fades to nothing.

S- Lots of spice and a bit of a funky sour aroma. The grapes that were used definitely show themselves in the nose. Interesting...

T- Very tart upfront with some vinous and barnyard flavors coming forth. Plenty of Belgian yeast and spice in the finish with a good dose of alcohol. Not noticing much in the way of hops.

M- Medium/light bodied with low carbonation.

D- A decent brew but quite strange to say the least. Not what I was expecting.

Photo of sommersb
3.9/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Capped 22oz. bottle poured into a New Belgium globe glass.

A: Golden color, with a small white head and lots of bubbles. The first pour was very clear, but the second pour was cloudy due to bottle conditioning. Very little lacing.

S: Very aromatic, with a typical Belgian yeast smell that reminded me of a tripel. Crisp and funky with a flowery, sweet, earthy aroma. Did not smell much in the way of malts or hops.

T: Seemed very much like a semi-dry sparking wine with the grapes added, combined with the Belgian taste of a strong golden pale ale or tripel. I tasted tart fruitiness like apple mixed with a sweet quality. Very complex and interesting.

M: High level of carbonation on a crisp, medium body. Smooth with a dry aftertaste.

D: I liked this beer and found it very intriguing with all of the different smells and tastes. Not something I would purchase on a regular basis but fun to try. I may want to pick up another one of these and try it after 12-2012 as Stone recommends.

Photo of dfillius
3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pint
A: Moderate pour yields 1/2 finger of white fizzy head. Crystal clear apple juice colored liquid looks very similar to apple juice! More head please.
S: Apple cider (from the chamomile?), tart grape juice, modest breadiness. Pleasing. Only slightly earthy hop.
T: Interesting, it takes some concentration for me to parse out the flavors. A great sweet start from the malt. The finish is all tart sauvignon blanc. The late finish is hops, but not much. Belgian funk in the midst. Unique. Almost like a Belgian Berlinerweisse. It tastes best with the yeast from teh bottle poured into the glass.
M: Starts and ends flat. The middle is all over the place with tartness and sweetness and funkiness. Fairly good with yeast.
D: Tasty, but a tad chaotic for drinking more than a modest amount. I won't buy again but I would maybe order a second glass.

Photo of pburland23
3.7/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 ounce bomber into my Great Divide Brussels glass.

Pours an orangey amber with about a finger of thick, fluffy white head that makes a leisurely retreat to some outstanding lacing.

Smell is highlighted by a delightful Belgian yeast aroma and some ambient fruitiness (apples and pears). The taste of this beer is certainly unique. It begins like your standard BSPA...biscuity malts and yeastiness and then the grapes make their appearance and this is where 101010 goes off track in my opinion. The grapes come on strong and are overly tart and they seem incongruous to the rest of the beer.

101010 is a medium bodied and well carbonated ale. As for drinkability, I can't see myself reaching for this again one any time soon unless I decided to lay it down for a little while and see if the aggressiveness of the grapes subside.

Photo of StoneBrewFanatic
3.95/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear gold into my pint glass with a little over a finger of head, retention is minimal and some spotty lacing.

S - Sweet grains and malts, biscuit, some citrus and fruit - apple and pear. Nutmeg, clove and chamomile.

T - Much like the nose, grain, biscuit, apple, pear, slight metallic tartness, nutmeg and clove and just a bit of spice and bitterness.

M - Crisp and refreshing, carbonation is a little on the bright side.

D - Overall, a nice beer and I am glad I tried it, very drinkable.

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

A: Pours a copper golden color with a slight white head that leaves a bit of lacing.

S: Major grape scent is present with some grassy, earthy hops and some citrus smells as well.

T: There is a definite wine presence in this brew, which makes sense because of the wine grapes added to the beer. There is also a Belgium essence to it, a bit of a yeast flavor and some citrus as well.

M: Medium bodied with average carbonation, leaves a bit of a tart taste in the palate,

D: For 9.5%, this beer goes down smooth. There is practically no trace of alcohol, but that doesn't mean I can drink it all day. I probably couldn't have more than a glass of this, the tart/sourness left in the palate is not my cup of tea. This is a decent beer, but not Stone's best.

Photo of plaid75
3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at The Lark, East Northport, NY.

Poured a light copper hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was decent retention and lacing.

The smell featured a wine grapes, a champagne yeast elect and some esters.

The taste consisted of bright sharp esters and a crisp noble hop. Some residual sugars apparent as well.

The mouthfeel was typical of the style.

Overall a decent ale. Better ones out there though.

Photo of hoppyhampy
4.17/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a tulip. Another bottle I have had for a while but am just now getting around to cracking it. Pours a lively opaque yellow. Good carbonation but little head. Smells like a Bavarian hefeweizen. Banana and coriander and some extra sweetness. There is a sugary, floral quality I can't place but is probably chamomile. Medium bodied and well rounded mouthfeel. Lots going on on the palate. I get guava up front and then banana and orange peel. The gapes definitely make this one unique. I wasn't sure what the outcome would be but this is quite good. There is a drier quality with this one than you find in most beers. Must be the grape tannins. There is also a very different sweetness to it. Lighter and grassy which has to come from the grapes. I like it. Stone is definitely on to something with this one. I predict more than one imitator.

Photo of bruachan
4.15/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

handsome brew, this is: brilliant, light amber hue with a neat film and little bird-eye head ringlets

as the bottle intimates, the nectar inside smells tripel-y and whitewine-y and chamomile-y. highly graped aroma

flavors are mild and delicate, certainly by stone's standards. some acidity, some sweetness, some spice...all make a tasty brew

i agree with the previous poster that this beverage is in the sweet side. i can see it being a hangover guarantee

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 ounce bomber into a pint glass. The beer is a bright golden-orange color, with no head. The nose is reminiscent of most of the wines used in the brewing process. You definitely get a smell of the Gewurzt, as well as an overly sweet smell, likely from the Muscat. There is an almost sour tinge to the nose because it is so sweet. The taste is an interesting blend of the wines, as well as a flavor similar to sour mash. Despite all the sweetness in the flavors and the robustness of the beer, there is a rather smooth finish. The beer kind of melts in your mouth as it goes down, very sweet. There is a lingering note of sour in the aftertaste, which is very mild and pleasant. The beer is pretty sweet, which might make it a limited drinking brew.

Photo of rarbring
4.05/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A clear brass colored brew, an off-white head that settles slowly, leaving a little lacing. Good curtains.

The smell is full of fresh fruits, pine-apple, apples, pears, some yeast strains as well.

Upfront a refreshing sweetnes, dextrose, sour fruity flavors, peach, apples, bitter lemon zest and a hint of wasabi.

Low carbonation, very small bubbles, a heavy body, yet rather refreshing, a long smooth dryness.

Lighter and more refreshing than expected, esp considering the ABV.

Photo of MatthewPatthew
4.22/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pretty clear with a golden-straw color. Crisp.

Great Belgian aroma. The Cabernet grapes really come through in the taste.

Overall a very refreshing and drinkable beer.

Apparently - according to my tour guide at stone - the grape flavor has rapidly dissipated in the few short months since it was bottled. As is in late December, this is one of its strongest characteristics.

Photo of hoegaardenhero
3.67/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

a: a little bit of tight white head (1/8th") sits on a golden colored slightly opaque body

s: sour with strong oily oak and sweet vanilla; sweet grapes on the back with some sugar candy; some dry rye

t: first is a dry white wine taste; finishes with that sort of acidic winey finish; some dry grain; very dry and acidic and not amazingly flavorful

m: lightly syrupy light to medium mouthfeel with tight carbonation

d: dry and and a little disappointing

Photo of TheDTrain
3.59/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I was very excited to try this years installment of Stone's Vertical Epic. Thanks to BeerFM's own Andy for sharing this limited edition. This Belgian strong ale pours a golden sun orange with moderate lace. Uplifting nose of camomile and grapes. Taste was a bit off-putting at first with the heavy spice, but got better with each drink. The grapes and camomile give an unusual sweet white wine-like mouthfeel.

This one got better as I drank it. For a limited release, this one didn't quite live up to the 'vertical epic' hype.

Photo of Pencible
3.8/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: This poured a clear gold with a bit of white head.
S: It smelled like strong metallic hops and acidic white grapes, with a bit of spices.
T: It tasted like metallic hops and white grapes, with a little floral tea and sour lager malt. It had a bitter and little sour aftertaste that was pretty clean.
M: It was oily with moderate carbonation. Pretty nice body.
D: This was an interesting experimental beer, just like other recent Stones. It had a clean scent and taste with good body, and the alcohol was well hidden. So it was easy to drink, but didn't really grab me. It didn't seem like a good candidate for aging either. Nice to try once, but that's it.

Photo of Cyberkedi
3.83/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear yellowish amber with a decent, fluffy white head that leaves a fair amount of lacing. Aroma is yeasty and earthy with floral and butterscotch hints. Flavor is yeasty and fruity, rather like a hefeweissen, but with a firm malty underpinning and hints of hops, butterscotch and citrus. Texture is fairly fizzy, and the alcohol bite is firm and sharp but not vicious or overwhelming.

Photo of ThePorterSorter
4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Saw it on tap, debated between a few belgians, but knew they all could afford to wait a few days.

Appearance:
This beer was poured into a 5oz tulip with a dense, white head of about one inch. The beer was a golden yellow with light brushes of orange against the midday sun. It's a well carbonated beverage, but the beer's head still disappeared as soon as the grease from my lips hit the rim.

Smell:
I am surprised by this beer at this point because I thought it was going to be a typical Stone strong IPA, but it was instead a Belgian! WIN. I would recognize that distinct funk anywhere. Aside from the yeast, I noticed nice notes of fruity sweetness accompanied by a little spice.

Taste:
The taste is that of a Belgian strong ale, if you're experimenting with this beer as your first of its class, try the real thing because although Stone did a nice job, it's still no Chimey or Saison Dupont (although...I don't think there is a pale ale to come from Belgium yet...).
Looking at the website I am noticing that there were 3 different grape varieties added along with chamomile, it would help to explain the beers capacity for complexity. I wouldn't mind trying the beer again now knowing that the sweetness comes partially from this tri-grape infusion. Little of the chamomile came through, but I felt quite relaxed after drinking!

Mouthfeel:
Dense, mysterious, yet bubbly, and summery like all Belgians seem to do. I wasn't getting bitter as much as I was the sweet or funk. The beer went down smooth, light, and refreshing. I was forced to sip (given the generous abv and weak man's glass size), but easily could have gulped this beer down.

Drinkability:
Excellent beer to drink mid winter, heavy and complex, yet light like a summer's treat. It broke up the porter-trippel-stout loop that I'd been in. I'm definitely glad I went out on a limb in trying it, I would definitely get again knowing that it's also bottled. For the price ($7.50 at the blue tusk in syr, ny) it's steep and there are other beers I'd probably get instead (ie. the same size ye' olde barley wine by dfh on tap for $5.50). However, I would definitely try this beer bottled, possibly let one sit until summer rolls around.

Cheers.

Stone 10.10.10 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 937 ratings.