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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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

911 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 911
Reviews: 469
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 13.83%
Wants: 20
Gots: 417 | FT: 16
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:
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 added by: JohnGalt1 on 10-02-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 911 | Reviews: 469 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Brez07


3.98/5  rDev +5.9%

Reviewing from notes. 22oz bottle poured into a snifter

A: Pours a clear golden color. There is a thin white layer of head. No lacing, but there is briefly an oily presence left as I swirl the glass

S: Floral notes, herb and light hops start this out. Also some wheat and candied sugar. The citrus kicks back in with an orangey presence

T: Smells like a triple. Or a saison. Maybe a hybrid? Underlying grape skin and herb flavors

M: Medium bodied with lots of carbonation. Has a soapy feeling. Dry finish, presumably from the grapes

D: An interesting beer, that's for sure. It's good now, but I question how this will hold up over the next 2+ years. Alcohol is hidden well, but it gets to you towards the end

11-04-2010 20:59:20 | More by Brez07
Photo of aerozeppl

New York

4.03/5  rDev +7.2%

A:Pours a super clear golden honey color. A little bit of white head. A decent amount of head retention.

S: The nose is all the grapes. A nice natural sweetness is there. A touch of the candi sugar. The yeast is fairly clean.

T: The grapes really take center stage. It has a nice natural sweetness but the yeast cuts into that quite a bit. It is on the sweet side but I think it works especially as a one off during the grape harvest.

M: Nice full body without being overwhelming. Low carbonation.

D: I enjoyed this beer. Not something I would go for every day but a nice sipper. Split the bomber which probably helps. This should be good to go in 2 years. Nice.

11-03-2010 23:32:02 | More by aerozeppl
Photo of Thorpe429


2.83/5  rDev -24.7%

Poured into a tulip. Reviewed from notes.

Pours golden with a bit of haze. Slight white head and a moderate amount of lacing. The initial nose is quite weird. Some strange spicing and a bit of grape and mild fruits. The taste is a bit of an improvement, but as of right now this thing is really just a mess. The spicing, grapes, and base beer really don't go together very well. Feel is a bit spicy. Hopefully this mellows out over the next two years, as this is not the best addition to the series, especially after a really nice offering in 09.09.09.

11-03-2010 21:41:00 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of despainmakesbeer


3.8/5  rDev +1.1%

Lighter, spicy notes. Not malt or hop aromas. Quickly disappearing head. Thin lacing around edge. Light Hazy brownish orange color with typcial Belgian "beer debris" in bottom of glass. Spicy beginning. Good high carbonation. Smooth spicy mouthfeel with sweet finish. Very drinkable Belgian, sweeter flavors come out as beer warms.

11-03-2010 02:04:38 | More by despainmakesbeer
Photo of kiddynamite920


3.7/5  rDev -1.6%

Bomber into a tulip.

A: Very crisp and clear in appearance. Can see all the way through the glass as bubbles stream from the bottom of the glass quite consistently. The beer is a light orange, yellow with a pretty white head. The carbonation on this one appears quite high.

S: Smells of great Belgian yeast with a white wine twist. Grassy and vinous with some white grape skin. A bit of funkiness, but very muted. Very tart smelling, full of lemon and citrus rind.

T: Very nice floral notes on top of nice, crisp citrus tartness. Yeast is lending a sweet bready flavor with some banana sweetness. Surprising that this beer is nearing 10%, not any sign of alcohol at all really. Don't really get a big chamomile flavor here either.

M: For how much this beer was bubbling away after being poured, it lacks a good crisp carbonation. Just a bit thin.

D: This beer would be quite dangerous if the price tag weren't so high. Really having a hard time finding any alcohol on the nose or palate. Recommended for white wine fans for sure, this beer imparts flavors that are very unique and groundbreaking in my opinion to the beer world. Another beer that could rival a good white wine at a beer/wine dinner.

11-02-2010 23:45:24 | More by kiddynamite920
Photo of flannelman808


3.98/5  rDev +5.9%

A: lightly hazed yellow orange in color and topped with a rather white head. Poor head retention but nice lacing.

S: Spice and fruit on the nose. Coriander and white grapes. There is a light note of honey as well.

T: Spicy sort and sort of cider like. The vinous like quality does overpower a little bit and one questions a bit just what it is that they are drinking. Its kind of a cool beer though, and I must say I like that its pretty different and will go back to it again. Killer for the price as well a bomber is under 7 bucks!

M: prickly

D: quite high

11-02-2010 07:31:16 | More by flannelman808
Photo of Spider889


3.03/5  rDev -19.4%

On tap at Bodega.

After all the hype, the speculation threads, the iso threads, and complaints that some can't find this beer in their local store, I was very disappointed. Though the moment I heard they were using white wine grapes I suspected the flavor wasn't going to be all that impressive. There's just simply too much going on in this beer and none of it seems to impact the flavor enough to make that particular ingredient necessary.

Nice golden orange color, slightly hazy. Thin, small head of white bubbles that didn't wait around for long.

Smelled sweet and of Belgian yeast. Golden raisins and tart apples.

The flavor was similar to the smell. The grapes had a very sour/greenness to them. Slightly sweet, mostly tart. Not nearly as complex as I was hoping, and I got none of the chamomile (which I was looking forward to). A little hot and a sipper for that reason. Not really hoppy at all despite the style category.

Super carbonated and very dry. I found this to not be very drinkable. I'd be curious to try this with some age on it since it's supposedly meant to age well. Though so far I don't see it getting much better any time soon.

11-02-2010 07:26:14 | More by Spider889
Photo of Plekto


4.85/5  rDev +29%

This is the third best beer that I have tasted to date. The first is a wheat beer from a small brewery in Oceanside, CA. The second was Stone's anniversary ale from last year.

A - it's nearly perfect when you consider that it's supposed to be a premium/super normal beer and not a super Belgian ale like their Russian Stout or similar. ie - it's sweet versus bitter and strong.

S - No major faults here. Almost perfect. The addition of a little wine makes it have none of the typical faults of most beers. I'm a fan of wine and mixed drinks, though, so hard-core beer fans might not like it nearly as much.

T - Honestly, this equals the best beers out there no matter what price and it's very inexpensive. A total shocker that shows what Stone can do when they set their mind to it. Alcohol is nearly a whopping 10% and you don't taste it at all. NOTE - this beer, having some wine in it, has to be drunk at a warmer temperature. It's one of the few beers that I've tasted that actually tastes better slightly warm. I think that the wine in it creates a temperature buffer that's not normally present in beers.

The biggest part, though, is that this is actually a beer/wine hybrid and I don't think anyone has done this as well before. It has the complexity of a good wine and the drinkability of a fine beer - a win-win for a beer with a nice meal or just for causal drinking.

M - it could be a bit better, but I think the wine in it tones down the head somewhat. Can't really fault it in any way though. The only reason it gets a 4.5 from me is that it's not as good as their Anniversary Ale from last year - that beat the Belgian ales by a large margin. As in crushed 10-20 dollar a bottle stuff for about $8. I *so* wish I'd bought several cases of that.

D - Awesome. Loads of alcohol and reminiscent of the beers that one would find in Europe. If you ever wanted to know what's missing from American Beers/is present in good German and Belgian beers in Europe, drink this.

In short, Stone needs to make this a normal offering. They really hit a home run with this one. I'd buy it consistently for parties and get-togethers.

11-02-2010 07:04:21 | More by Plekto
Photo of jjh19


3.63/5  rDev -3.5%

Appearance: Tiny bubbles, bright yellow color
Smell: A little spicy smell
Taste: Quite sour, some herbal notes
Mouthfeel: Fairly light mouthfeel, a little dry
Drinkability: It's a fine saison, nothing to win me completely over to the style, but worth trying.

11-02-2010 03:38:18 | More by jjh19
Photo of JoEBoBpr


4.33/5  rDev +15.2%

Poured into a tulip from a 22oz bomber.

A - Pours a slightly hazy strong straw golden color with slight orange hints. Mostly golden yellow. There is a nice .25 inch head that is white and it recedes pretty quick.

S - Delicious clove hints and slight flower aroma. There is some delicious funk in the beer as well with some slight corn husk aromas. Great grain aroma and sweetness as well as some nice vinous grape sweetness and tart hints. Very near perfect aroma for me.

T & M - Wow what a nice and faithful to the style beer. Starts of with grainy earthy notes that have some good bready notes and slowly develop into some nice sweet clove hints. There is some great phenols and funk to this beer in this middle part of it. There is some slight tartness and vinous character to the beer especially on the trail end of the beer. There are some nice white wine hints as well as some slight granny smooth apple and pear. Very delicious beer. The body is a bit on the lighter side and doesnt feel as fluffy as other BSPA. Still very good.

D - Delicious and refreshing. The ABV is definitely there but its very well hidden. I enjoyed this more than the 09. Definitely a worthy repeat.

11-02-2010 00:31:16 | More by JoEBoBpr
Photo of alpinebryant


3.9/5  rDev +3.7%

Pours a clear straw yellow with almost no head. Smell of doughy belgian yeast, spices, and green grapes mixed with pilsner malt.

Taste very similar to the aroma, however the grape flavors are extremely strong. The belgian yeast is also pretty strong, but there is not that creamy belgian mouthfeel that I usually associate with a BSPA. This is nearly a hybrid between a Duvel type Belgian Strong pale ale and a chardonnay. The latter seems to be more prevalent with the mouthfeel as this was pretty thin overall. Candied sugar mixed with grapes and bready yeast. While not a bad beer - and I applaud the effort to make this a different beer for the Epic lineup, it is not one that I would really seek out for a second go around. preferably it would come in a 12 oz bottle so I wouldnt have to drink 22oz of it, but it is relatively drinkable with a low carbonation and a very light almost wine-like body.

11-01-2010 23:31:36 | More by alpinebryant
Photo of steelerguy

New York

4.2/5  rDev +11.7%

A - Hazy golden color, low carbonation, spare head with big bubbles...faded very rapidly leaving only light lace on top.

S - Spicy with Belgian phenols and a slight mustiness, almost like a farmhouse ale.

T - Clean light malt character, the spices come on strong but not overly so, floral hops with a smooth bitterness that finishes with some lemon at the end. This is a complex beer that is well balanced and I think could use a bit more aging to reach it's true potential. Regardless, I think it is quite excellent right now, and will only get better.

M - Nice and this like a Belgian pale should be, there is a definite warmth from the alcohol, a bit more carbonation would be nice to finish.

D - For being such a big beer, it is light bodied, complex but balanced, and quite smooth. Very enjoyable.

11-01-2010 23:13:46 | More by steelerguy
Photo of jorg2619


4/5  rDev +6.4%

I have waited a few weeks to drink my first bottle of 10.10.10. This Belgium triple pours super clean and pale into the tulip glass. There is a thin hyper bubbled head that leaves minimal lacing. The mouthfeel is thin yet coating which is nice. The taste is different, I taste busquity malt, the spicy yeast, some chamomile, along with some dry notes that must be the "wine" characteristics. A nice dry finish on this fresh beer. I like this beer and I look forward to it again in a few years

11-01-2010 23:01:38 | More by jorg2619
Photo of nas5755


4.33/5  rDev +15.2%

A clear golden beer with amber hues, a small quickly disappearing head and some lacing. The nose has some chamomile and pale malts, with some grapes. The taste is full of chamomile, grapes, sweet honey, phenols, and a little spice with a big lemon chamomile finish . I think age will really help this beer out. The sweetness of this beer gives it a slight syrupy note which become a hindrance later on, but at the moment there are no negative consciences from texture. The carbonation is medium. Overall, I really enjoy this beer, the finish is amazing, although a tad hot, I love to drink a really intense glass of overly steeped loose leaf chamomile tea at times and this beer really reminds me of chamomile tea. I expect age to bring more of the grape flavors, dull out the chamomile a little, but improve the overall taste vastly.

11-01-2010 22:03:33 | More by nas5755
Photo of Foxtrot


4.22/5  rDev +12.2%

I have to give Stone credit for pushing the envelope for beer creativity. I like that a lot. Last years VE offering was good, and interesting, but lets see how this one fairs.

Pours from bomber a nice slightly hazy golden honey. Head was about one finger in height with slow receding pace. Light lacing, but good foam around the edges even after the head is gone.

Aroma is pretty nice with cloves and phenols being the most obvious to pick out. Yeast and ester's remind me of tripels and hefeweizens.

The aroma's point in a strong direction of being Belgian influenced. I wonder if they used a Belgian yeast or there house yeast. But it certainly can be found in the taste. Begins pretty crisp and tart up front, then mellows with grape and some acidity. Lively notes and crispness of sauvignon blanc with light touches of kiwi and some tannins. Loved that quality about this beer, yeasty and spice and slightly puckering at the same time. A bit hot, but I don't mind seeing as there was such a wide variety of grapes used, it was to be expected. Aging should most likely take that edge off.

Mouthfeel was surprisingly medium, the ABV seemed like it would be fuller, but not at all. The flavors clear out relatively easy and leave a nice lasting viscosity on the tongue.

Drinkability seems to be right on the mark. This beer was meant to sipped and enjoyed with a fine meal and could easily fit into a fine wine establishment. Incredibly enlightened and almost elegant due to the complexity.

EDIT: They did use a Belgian yeast!

11-01-2010 02:52:10 | More by Foxtrot
Photo of axeman9182

New Jersey

3.63/5  rDev -3.5%

22oz bottle, poured into my Duvel tulip.

This year's entry into the Vertical Epic series pours an absolute crystal clear yellow orange. The creamy white crown rises up to about three fingers in height before falling away disappointingly quickly. There's not a trace of lacing to be found on the glass, The nose is decent. A vinous acidity is the predominant trait, but there's some clove/pepper making itself heard as well. While there wasn't any malt influence in the aroma, it makes itself known in the flavor. It's not overwhelming by any means, but there's a definite green apple/pear malt sweetness right up front. That same racy acidity that I can only assume comes from the grapes crashes the body and dominates the middle of the beer on my palate. The yeast spiciness comes in to close things out, and the flavors are so vibrant that I can't really find the chamomile anywhere. Body is a tad heavy and carbonation is slightly too low, and the result is a mouthfeel that's just a bit too rich/syrupy for this kind of beer. It doesn't miss the mark by a ton though. 10.10.10 Vertical Epic is a decent beer, but the impact of the grapes borders on overpowering at times. I think I'll enjoy this beer a little bit more with some age on it.

11-01-2010 01:54:09 | More by axeman9182
Photo of adsomers


4.38/5  rDev +16.5%

Note: this review was made after nursing this beer for 4 hours. I strongly recommend spending a long time with this one, it's a very slow evolver.

A - Bright gold, clear. Constant bubbling from bottom of glass (even after 2 hours). Poured with medium vigorousness to reveal a fine head.

S - winey aroma and a *hint* of belgian funk. With time (3+ hours) aroma turns to a hot alcohol with grape juices totally exposed. Can't stop putting my nose in this one (4 hours in).

T - Taste is snappy, a tad sour, very complex as it lingers. Also turns a bit hot and evolves over time

M - A slight pucker, then a smooth dryness, then a lingering tingle and mild bitterness

D - This has your mouth feeling things you didn't expect. But after a long slow session with this beer, what you come to expect is constantly defied. This beer must be had very slowly to experience the many hidden layers.

11-01-2010 00:06:51 | More by adsomers
Photo of Beernf


3.58/5  rDev -4.8%

On tap @ Tony's Darts Away in Burbank, CA. Part of a Stone archive event. Poured into a tulip glass.

I thought this was a decent Belgian, big wine smell like others have mentioned. No lacing from what i could see, very little head. I thought it tasted pretty earthy, almost herbacious at times. Has a kind of waxy flavor in there along with the sweetness of the grapes. Thought the alcohol finished hot and i mostly sipped this guy. Oddly i think i could drink a lot of this beer though. I wanted another when i was done.

10-31-2010 23:40:34 | More by Beernf
Photo of 100floods


2.9/5  rDev -22.9%

Pours a hazy pale yellow. Wonderful, classic belgian yeast aromas. I'm thinking green apples and something else. Interesting flavors. I taste the familiarities of a belgian pale ale. but the after taste reminds me of something sour and grain, not in a good way. This flavors stays in my mouth and ruins the experience. It almost taste like sour dark fruit. It makes my taste buds think that whatever is being left, I'm not supposed to taste. It kinda reminds me of a bad white wine (definitely hints of grapes in the mix, not my thing). Did I get a bad bottle? Perhaps if there was more carbonation this beer could be saved. The finish to this beer is what really throws me off. I was not expecting this.... Upon reading this 'liner notes' to this beer some of my notions weren't too far fetched. This just seems like an odd blend to put in a beer.

10-31-2010 22:35:40 | More by 100floods
Photo of cbutova


4/5  rDev +6.4%

Shared by Dan, entering my review for now but I will re-review it on the day of reckoning in 2 years. From notes.

A- Golden yellow with a creamy white head that has decent retention. A cloud and ring leave slight spotty lace.

S- Mostly Belgian Strong Pale Ale yeast with some grape behind it. A bit floral.

T- A good blend of Belgian Pale yeast with spice and bread. Floral hints and then a huge blast of grape in the finish. Some citrus zest, sweetness and grape vines.

MF- Moderate body with solid carbonation. Slight bitterness and alcohol warmth. Silky.

DB- Grape blasted Belgian Ale. Good flavor from the grape and spice combination. A redemption for the 14th Anniversary.

UPDATE: 02/02/2013

T- A lot of grape influence still but not killing the beer. Spicy feel like lemon zest and pepper. Oak is tasted and herbal floral hops. Gets to be VERY grape heavy with time and warmth.

Scored: 3.25, 3.0, 3.5, 3.5, 3.5

10-31-2010 21:41:56 | More by cbutova
Photo of bucklemyshoe


4.05/5  rDev +7.7%

22 oz. bottle at 42* into a Stone IRS tulip.

A: It pours a clear and almost glowing orange color with no head.

S: The smell is eerily similar to Don de Dieu: strong Belgian yeast character, spicy earthiness, and some sweet, white wine.

T: It begins with spicy earthiness, lemon, and transitions to sweet grapes. It finishes dry with some breadiness and citrus rind.

M: It has an average but sticky body and isn't as carbonated as I imagined, given the freshness and style.

D: This is an interesting take on one of my favorite styles. It goes down way too easily as well.

10-31-2010 04:48:36 | More by bucklemyshoe
Photo of Vonerichs


3.88/5  rDev +3.2%

Clear golden body, with little head. Decent looking, but nothing spectacular.

Smell is slightly grassy and tart. The savignon blanc grapes are really pronounced.

Thumbs up to Stone for thinking out of the box. This is a novel take on this style (which the bottle calls a tripel.) The grapes give it a crisp dryness, but there's also a low degree of sweetness to it. It's slightly grassy, presumably from the savignon blanc.

Mouthfeel is crisp and dry, moderately high carbonation.

A very enjoyable beer. The alcohol does not show up as much as 9.5% would suggest.

10-31-2010 01:20:05 | More by Vonerichs
Photo of dirtylou


3.85/5  rDev +2.4%

22oz bomber, split and shared

very interesting description on this one

appearance: served in my ale asylum chalice, hazy bright copper-golden body, light white foam - no retention

smell: fruity and floral - sauv blanc grapes (can't really distinguish the other grapes used), yeast, fruity esters, pale malt

taste: i generally dig when belgian pales take on vinous traits - while this has flaws, its still something i enjoy. sauv blanc and other white grapes provide great depth, though the alcohol is a bit hot on the finish. Pale malts and light leafy german hops provide support. I'll sit my other bottle down till 2012 and see what happens.

mouthfeel: a little hot, medium-light, prickly

drinkability: good

10-30-2010 22:43:54 | More by dirtylou
Photo of Gavage

New Jersey

3.9/5  rDev +3.7%

Appearance: pours an orange color with a short 1/2" head that breaks apart quickly.

Smell: green grapes, grass, and fruity sweetness create a nice aroma. A hint of wine like scent arrives late.

Taste: nice malt profile with some pears, grapes, hearty bitterness, a bit of spiciness, and a little touch of alcohol. The flavors kind of hit a chardonnay note late in the swallow.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Crisp to start, less crisp and a bit dry late. Aftertaste is long.

Drinkability: this is another slow sipping beer from the vertical series freshly delivered and opened. I could see this dramatically improving with some age.

10-30-2010 20:47:46 | More by Gavage
Photo of Chico1985


4/5  rDev +6.4%

Thanks to Dan (atremains) for sharing.

Translucent light orange with white head. Some flecks eventually settle to a small white blob at the bottom.

Tart scent, getting more sugar, spice and floral notes more than anything else, a tiny bit of booze.

Huge white grape tastes. Definitely reminiscent of a white wine. Candi sugar, floral notes. Sweet but not cloying. Very nice baked bread finish.

Mouthfeel is solid, a tad boozy but I thought it was pretty well-hidden.

I liked it way more than I thought I would. This is the beer that DFH Midas Touch SHOULD'VE been, definitely was more intrigued with this than the 08 or 09.

10-30-2010 14:02:48 | More by Chico1985
Stone 10.10.10 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 911 ratings.