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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

936 Ratings
THE BROS
88
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 936
Reviews: 472
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 13.83%
Wants: 22
Gots: 423 | FT: 18
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: 936 | Reviews: 472 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of philbe311
3.77/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A Belgian Style Ale brewed with rye... I'm intrigued...

A - A finger and a half worth of big chunky slightly off white head... Minimal retention gives way to a completely uneven and varied lacing, thick in some areas, a thin veil in others, with a full rich collar... The color is an interesting combination of bright gold and orange... A unique pale granny smith green presents itself when backlit... Very tiny bubbles form a tight spiral in the center of the tulip that rise rapidly... Other wise some sporadic moderate paced carbonation throughout...

S - An intoxicating belgian yeast strain... Golden raisins... Honey... Sweet grapes... Wheat and grains... Faint mandarin oranges... A subdued muskiness...

T - Starts slightly sweet... Grapes... Raisins... Apple... The the Belgian yeast and the spiciness of triticale kicks in... The finish is of tart grapes and tannins...

M - Sharp... Dense... Medium bodied... Mildly lush... Prickly carbonation... A dry and slightly puckering tart finish...

D - A unique take on the Belgian Strong Pale Ale style... The ante is raised by the addition of both sweet and spicy notes... No real complaints though the components to meld the way I was hoping... Tasty, but nothing too memorable... I do however applaud the effort...

Photo of magnj
3.67/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Light golden orange body is hazy, little head.

S - Extremely complex. Fruity, hint of Belgian yeast, somewhat sweet, almost a little licorice. With so many ingredients it's kind of hard to identify, but smells nice. More inviting than a typical Tripel for me.

T - Right up front it's kind of tart, the grapes take a big role. The chamomile is also detectable, of course it's hard to tell which ingredient is lending what flavors.

M/D - Thin to medium body, ends dry. As drinkable as any other in the style. Interesting, not sure how it will age, but worth a shot.

Photo of DefenCorps
3.1/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

I bought this despite the negative press that it's got.

Pouring a clear, golden orange, this is almost like a Dortmunder. There's a thin, white head that falls off quite fast, leaving no real lacing. Decent

The nose is interesting. Right off the bat, the grapes are apparent, along with some spice and alcohol. There's a little clove, some ginger, and a malt sweetness isn't particularly noticeable apart from some sugar that's present. I'm torn on this, it isn't particularly attractive, but it isn't repulsive either. Overly simple while having a moderately noticeable yeasty spiciness, this is decent.

The palate opens with a little grape juice, alcohol and c love. This really is pushing the boundaries, it almost is some hybrid between a mixed drink with cheap vodka and malt liquor. As harsh as that might sound, this beer isn't terrible. Again, a little ginger appears, on the mid-palate. The grapes are definitely noticeable, both early on and on the finish, with a moderate level of flavor present. However, there are no tannins whatsoever here, I wonder if they used juice instead of whole grapes? The bottle mentions chamomile, I can't say I get much of it here. Mildly sweet on the finish, there's a spicy, alcoholic character as well. Medium-light in body with moderate carbonation, it's mild creamy. Decent, I can't really imagine what benefit age would have on this.

Photo of Haybeerman
4.09/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Clear straw/gold color. Poured a 1 finger white head that dissipated to a skim. Laced in broken rings.

S: White grapes and spices. Bready malt faint hop character. Smells very inviting.

T: Light fruit; mainly grape. Sweet malt and some peppery spices. Maybe some candi sugar. Sweetness lingers through a light bitter; beer seems to balance more in the middle than the finish. Warming alcohol.

M: Medium body. Low to moderate carbonation. Rich and sweet to a warming finish.

D: Interesting nose and flavor. The abv makes it to savor.

Photo of ixodus
3.97/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured into a Guiniess Pint Glass. Gold/Orange in color, small white head that fizzles down into a ring around the glass. Leaves a small amount of lacing

S: Banana, Clove, Orange, Spicy yeast esters.

T: Very sweet upfront with a spicy backbone. Banana, clove, orange, grape, moderate alcohol taste. Almost tastes like a strong Hefeweizen

M: Medium bodied with a lot of fizzy carbonation. Sweet, Spicy and Strong.

D: Quite good. It may need awhile to mellow out... I'll be saving my next bottle until 2012

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

Poured a clear, slightly dark gold with minimal head after a pretty relaxed pour. My bomber really didn't seem to have much sediment in it at all. Some typical Belgian scents like bubblegum and clove, but there is a lot of slightly sweet white wine aromas. Taste is pretty similar, but I found the wine taste to be a little strong. There's also a pretty strong pepper note. Alcohol is really prominent on this. The two year wait would have to help this aspect. Finishes pretty dry...more like a Riesling than Gewurztraminer. This one was kind of odd for me. I'll have to get another one and
play the waiting game.

Photo of tbern007
3.73/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- hazy burnt orange/honey. Thin head with little lacing.
S- sweet, slight hop, mild grape juice smell.
T- initially very strong in the clove department, kind of hefe-like, yeast, wheat, hits quickly but becomes sweet. Citrus/orange and clove are predominant. The grape flavor is like white grape juice so the Muscat and maybe the Gewurz might be noticeable but there isn't as much of a dry white wine flavor as you might expect.
M- very fizzy and carbonated despite the small head. The aftertaste is sweet and good. The strength of the taste is immediate and not lasting. The higher ABV is not noticeable.
D- decent overall. A little different. I don't think it's worth the extra cost. I wonder how different it might be with time, as it is suggested on the bottle, but I doubt I'll find out.

Photo of ryantaussig
3.62/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Golden pale color, quite typical of the style. The head is less than I expected for the style. Not nearly as large, thick and luxurious as I had hope. Dissipated rather quickly.

S: Spicy notes are most prominent. Plenty of malt and some residual hop character that I might just be imagining.

T: Well balanced levels of sweet malts and spices, bur hops are not present in the flavor so there isn't any balancing bitterness. Lots of grape and candy notes. The alcohol has a slight burn to it

M: Quite thick, but lower on the carbonation than I'd like. The full body leads to a medium finish.

Photo of jampics2
3.97/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap @ the Winking Lizard. I had two pours as the first got the dregs of the keg. This was my first beer for Cleveland Beer Week and it was a great way to kick off the wonderful week of events!

I'm not sure what I think of this beer. I'm waiting until 2012 to rate all the Stone VE's that I've acquired, but I got this one on tap so I wanted to take some notes. It was an interesting drinking experience, but the jury is still out on this purported Belgian Strong Pale Ale that is really a wine/beer in hiding.

The beer is a bright orange color that is murky and foreboding. The second pour was much better looking and brighter. The cloudiness also subsided. There was very little head and poor lace. Not the most attractive beer I've seen.

The smell was where things started to get interesting. Some yeasty esters giving some pepper and clove. Some chamomile comes on strong then lets go just enough for some green grapes to make an appearance, bringing this to a fruity place.

The taste was also very interesting. The chamomile was the first thing I tastes before the sweet malt kicked in. There were spicy notes of coriander and clove. Then the grapes came back in, adding vinous sweetness and almost a lychee note. The aftertaste was sweet Belgian malt, grapes and yeast. Seriously a cool spin on a beer, but does it cross the line into being more of a bine or a weer?

The mouthfeel had significant enough density and the carb had enough sparkle to make this enjoyable. I'm excited to see where this one goes. It's very green right now, but it could be a really unique, killer spin on one of my favorite Belgian genres of beer in two years and two months!

Photo of Onenote81
3.97/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Grabbed a couple bottles of this, one for now, one in a couple years. I wanted to make sure I knew what this was like fresh before the aged version. 22oz bottle poured into a tall tulip.

Pours a dark, dirty gold. A thin white head tops it off, but disappears quicker than I can say "grape beer." No lace. The nose is definitely giving forth essences of fresh pale grapes, herbal tea, lemon, banana, and yeast. Fresh aromatic bounty.

Nice mouthfeel. Moderate heft; smooth finish with a subtle crispness to it. Flavors start out a bit funky with notes of yeast, sourness. Gives way to a wash of vinous grapes, and lemon zest. The herbal aspect is not as bold in the flavor, but it complements it well in the background. This isn't one of my favorite styles by any means, but this was a treat to drink. Stone really brought the unique qualities together well and made a heck of a beer. Can't wait to see what 2 years does to this one.

Photo of Docer
3.92/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Grabbed a bottle to try. Went in to this not really knowing if I will like it... not a fan of the style.

- Pours an ever so slightly cloudy straw yellow and golden light copper... very little fizzy white head.. leaves a micro-sized ring of foam..

- Slightly stinky grain aroma.. light grape and floral essence... certainly some banana yeast notes.. sweet, zingy, lightly funky... interesting.

- Interesting smooth yet zesty Belgian character.. grapes are present, but don't overpower... they add some bitterness.. freshness... lightly floral, banana yeast all over... grainy, light, and balanced... certainly smooth and hides the alcohol very well.

- Slightly drying and chewy... meaty almost... zesty though to wet the palate.

- Overall very interesting, and certainly can stand out as a good contender in the Triple, strong pale category.. unique.

Photo of hopheadjuice
4.15/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle.

Pours a pale almost golden rose with a small fizzy almost non existent white head falling fast and leaving little lace.

Grapes are strong upfront some sweet some more dry and bitter presenting powerful floral characteristics, some clove and fruity esters, definitely a Belgian yeast funk in here too.

As previously mentioned the flavors are a bit muddled but age will do this well. Sweet dry grapes lead the raid on your taste buds, followed by some funky yeast spice and a faint hint of chamomile. All the sweet is slightly balanced by a gentle touch of bittering hops.

Medium bodied slightly slick from the added grape juice mix. Good carbonation. Finishes immensely dry.

I'm not a fan of Belgian styles but this one gives me some hope, maybe its just the grapes but i truly enjoyed this beautiful offering from the brewers at Stone.

Photo of OWSLEY069
3.9/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clean orange-ish to yellow color with an off white head. In the aroma, a hint of dry white grapes and a hint of tartness. In the taste, a small tartness, gingerbread like maltiness and quite white wine like. A smooth and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a dry white wine like aftertaste. Between a white wine and Belgian strong ale, will be nice after a couple years of aging.

Photo of mattgreger
4.09/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a dark, but slightly clear golden color. This brew had a small bright white head that faded pretty quickly. It does leave behind some nice lacing as you make it through the glass.

The first nose on this one is all bitter. Not overwhelming, but certianly catches you off guard if you aren't expecting it. There is a tart grape smell that roles from the nose. There some other aroma as well, such as lemon, cherries, and maybe some bananas as well. There is a huge arrey of peppers as well, that role into a hoppy grasses and spices. I think there might even be a touch of floral hops in there as well.

The flavor on this one is kind of muddled a bit. As many expect this brew is meant to age for some time. There is the touch of grapes and the front, some what of a white wine almost. Its followed by the grouping of almost the same aromas from above, with some lemon zest, a touch of cherries and some esters of bananas. The finish does have a nice malty, breadiness at the end that kinda gives it a decent finish. I think, that though this brew is great, it will become amazing over time.

The mouthful on this one is very light, and extremely crisp. The carboniation level is nice, giving this brew a nice tingle on the taste buds. Its followed by a nice warming from the alcohol.

For the drink on this one, it really depends on the drinker. There is quite a bunch that this one would give someone, who isn't normally a belgian strong pale ale drinkier. It is a bitter beer, but I like it. I am definitly going to pick up a few more for storage, and to try through the next two years. Can't wait for 11.11.11.

Photo of taigor
4.13/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into 8oz glass.

A - Poured clear golden color with small head that quickly dissipated leaving slight lacing around the glass.

S - Scents of yeast and flowers but nothing much else. Slightly disappointing.

T - Very sweet and bready to start with with nutmeg, banana, and some other fruits and a slightly sweet dry finish.

M - Medium bodied and well carbonated.

D - Excellent strong pale ale, well balanced and abv well masked. I highly recommend it.

Photo of fastsrt
4.43/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

22 ounce bottle in a wine glass

A: golden, no head

S: grape, belgan yeast, with a slight sourness that balances out the flavors perfectly. there is is a nice wine note.

T: awesome, this beer is so freaking good. belgian triple with a slight sourness. not typical stone,

M nice carbonation, dry, crisp

D: could drink this stuff all night. this is a must try beer

Photo of Chincino
3.72/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this beer on-tap. It poured to be a copper color and their was a small amount of white head that disappeared fast. There was an aroma of grapes. The taste was slightly sweet, but left a bit of a bitter aftertaste. The beer was medium-bodied. It was a beer with good drinkability although I wouldn't recommend having more than one in a sitting.

Photo of Wolfpack2005
3.4/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber poured into a snifter.

Pours a light copper color, with very little head that does not stick around for long.

The yeast pretty much dominates the smell with a hint of sweetness from the grapes.

The taste is pretty much an inverse of the smell. A yeast/bread taste upfront that is overpowered by the sweetness of the grapes. Do not taste any of the warmth that i was expecting from the alcohol.

A light to medim mouthfeel with an ample amount of carbination.

Overall not a bad beer, but I was definately expecting a lot more from Stone. Im sure this beer was meant to be laid down, but this is all I have to go on right now. We'll see if it improves with age.

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

A-Rich golden pour with a rather poor head retention and virtually non-existent lacing. Surprisingly clear brew in the first pour and slight hazing in the second.

S-Yeast, clove and banana and a hint of white wine.

T-The white wine characteristics really shine in this one, which would be great if I liked white wine. Think Tripel mixed with champagne and you get the idea. Like some of the others in this series this is a clean crisp beer with a dry astringent finish. Slightly sweet with a hint of clove and pepper playing into the mix, the ABV seems very well hidden yet this is slightly disappointing in its lack of complexity...something that maybe some cellaring will cure. The basic concept reminds me of DFH Red and White...

M-Effervescent carbonation and slightly creamy mouthfeel.

D-Interesting, but in my book a bit lackluster, but then again I have not been blown away by the few VE series beers that I have tried. Glad I tried it...will buy another to age along with the other VE's in the basement, but I'll take a Double Bastard any day over this.

Photo of Duttonic
4.47/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled 11/11/10 at Dancing Bear Pub, Waco, TX in an Allagash tulip glass.

A- Pours a light/medium copper color with one finger of white head that dissipated rapidly. There was medium/heavy and aggressive lacing throughout the sampling.

S- Sweet white grapes, hoppy notes, cranberry, cherry, chamomile, and banana esters.

T/M- Tasted like a dry hopped white wine with a bitter, dry, and tart, but not overpowering finish. Extremely smooth with a velvety texture.

D- This is my favorite Belgian Strong Pale Ale that I have ever had. It has amazing complexity, body composition, and finish. I really hope that Stone starts making this regularly. Since TX will not be getting any bottles, I may never see this beer again. It is definitely in my personal favorites and in my top five of rarities that I really want to see again.

Photo of charlzm
3.45/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Consumed October 28th, 2010 at Blue Palms, Hollywood, CA.

Clear, medium copper/gold hue. Small head dissipates rapidly leaving little sheeting, just a white crown.

Aroma is white wine/champagne yeasty with a touch of bready malt.

Flavor is banana bread meets champagne. Lightly bitter on finish. Flavor comes on sharp and finishes clean.

Mouthfeel is unremarkable, though slightly dry.

This one is probably intended to gain in complexity over time. I hope so, as it is unremarkable in its current form.
___

Consumed on January 20th, 2013 at a private Vertical Epic tasting.

Slightly cloudy light to medium yellow with low carbonation.

Aroma is a burst of yellow mustard with a floral note. Weird! The mustard note did subside after the beer warmed slightly.

On the palate: white grape juice, a slight woody note, a grace note of chamomile and a significant bitter finish.

This one came across well-carbonated in the mouth; lively on the tongue.

This one held up well but was still slightly more enjoyable when fresh.

Photo of SkunkWorks
3.38/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle poured into a tulip. I'm going to have one now and one probably a year from now and I'll compare to see how it ages.

Look: dark, golden color. Its initially clear until the sediment gets in there. The head is slightly tan and three fingers thick and quite mountainous. It leaves some lacing behind.

Smell: knowing that grapes have gone into this beer, I went into the smell looking for them. They are there but not as powerfully as I would've expected. There's some grassiness and spiciness, like cloves and pepper. There are also some floral aromas to this one.

Taste: sweet tasting with a hint of grapes, lots of other fruits as well like green apples. The alcohol is obvious and kind of biting in the end. Otherwise, there's not a whole lot here.

Feel: fairly thin, very crisp from the copious amounts of carbonation, and warming from the alcohol.

Drink: I could drink a lot of this if I wanted to but I don't know that I would.

Overall, I'm kind of disappointed. Hopefully this one ages well, and I'm sure that it will, but young it is not very good. It tastes like a BSPA without any distinct character and isn't as bold as I would expect something from Stone to be. I haven't had a young Vertical Epic before and I think I'm now glad that I have only had aged ones before. Maybe try it to compare it when its been aged but don't expect a winner.

Photo of cpetrone84
3.65/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Draft at Fat Head's Pittsburgh

A-pours a transparent golden amber with a pure white head.

S-the nose is of belgian yeast with notes of candied sugar. hints of lemons with tons of spicy phenolic peppers.

T-the taste is syrupy with an assertive malt body and hints of caramel. a light belgian yeast is present but not enough of it, it is very sugary, candied belgian sugar. there are notes of bananas and lemon and the peppery spice comes in towards the back and is much more present than the nose. Some grassy hops sit in the finish with a light bitterness.

M-this has a full syrupy body, creamy feel on the tongue, very dry champaign like finish with a fair carbonation but lacking a little with the syrupy and dry body.

D-this is tasty and somewhat drinkable. it is well balanced but lacks a little in the integration department. the flavors can be extreme at times and work alon. the finish is univiting as it is so thick, dry, and spicy without the carbonation to give it a certain crispness to balance.

Photo of bluejacket74
3.47/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 ounce bottle. Served in a snifter, the beer pours a hazy orange/amber color with about a quarter inch off-white head. Not much head retention or lacing. The brew smells like bananas, white grapes, coriander, yeast and a bit of bubblegum. It tastes mostly like white grapes/wine, along with coriander, yeast, and some herbs. Both the aroma and taste are relatively sweet, but there is some bitterness too. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, it's a bit slick and dry with low carbonation. Drinkability is decent enough, it's smooth and refreshing. I think this is an OK brew, but I'm not a big fan of it because it's a bit too wine-like for me. It'll be interesting to see how this beer ages.

Photo of mattsdenney
3.09/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear amber gold color w/ thin head that dissipates quickly. No lacing or retention.

Smell: Strong grape smell w/ a light whiff of licorice and fruit.

Taste: Sweet muscadine flavor with a touch of malty rye. Light hops and lingering taste of white wine.

Mouthfeel: Light, bubbly, and dry (like wine I suppose).

Drinkability: I don't prefer sweet wine so it stands to reason that I wouldn't prefer beer with the same characteristic. That being said, this beer is complex and flavorful. Would be interested to taste after it was cellared for a few years.

Stone 10.10.10 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 936 ratings.