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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

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very good

936 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 936
Reviews: 472
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 13.83%
Wants: 22
Gots: 424 | FT: 19
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 bonkers
3.45/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I poured from a bomber into a snifter. It pours hazy straw yellow with a light, wispy 1 inch head. The aroma is sweet grapes, very vinous. The beer is very sweet and dominated by vinous characteristics, finishes crisp. The beer is light bodied, well carbonated, no hint of its high abv. It is an easy drinked, most wine drinkers would like it. Not the beer for me, if I want white wine I would buy white wine.

Photo of cjacobsen
4.22/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a pint glass

Poured a light yellow straw color with a small, white head. Had a little sediment in it which made for some cloudiness.

Smelled sweet and alcoholic. You can catch the hints of grapes and wine.

Tastes just like it smells. Has that wisp of wine grapes but not the immediate sour hit of wine. It's got a great combination of additives and the Belgian Triple. The major sweetness and heavy alcohol caused by the candi and fermentable sugars is offset by the chamomile and grapes and it evens out to a great tasting brew.

The mouthfeel is still a bit tart and the alcohol and carbonation plays a role here. It nips a little but its pretty smooth for a triple.

I could easily drink this all night long but would end up on the floor with the 9.5%. I have a wine tasting party coming up and I'm thinking about bringing along a bottle of the 10.10.10 to show the winos how we can do it in beer country.

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

Bought at Whole Foods Pasadena-Arroyo Pkwy,Calif.

Poured a light yellow color into Steinlager glass. Small 1/4" head with carbonation. The smell of grapes and Belgian ale is the first thing I noticed. The taste of grapes is noticable. Mouthfeel is good with a slighty dry back end. Good drinkability that it's not as strong tasting as I thought it would be. Okay, a couple of glasses in, I'm starting to feel the abv. Another good Epic.

Photo of jeffjeff1
4.1/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My wife picked up a bottle of this for me.

Appearance- dark golden color, head dissipates quickly

Smell- wine grapes, spice

Taste- grapes, very interesting flavor

Mouthfeel- medium bodied, high carbonation

Drinkability- very good, I liked it a lot

Photo of mentor
4.03/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a finger of lightly tanned head over a clear rich-golden liquid. Nice streamers running to keep the head supplied. Smells of musty grapeskins, mild brettanomyces, earthy yeast, flattened waxy clove phenol. Mild lemon, tang mix, some oxidized character, and frozen peas.

Tastes light grapey, green apple, clean clove, and belgian candi sugar. Earthy yeast and nice peppery zip that has a bit of ginger character to it. Nice malt sweet carried on a thick body that gives an interesting grape leaf flavor overall. Alcohol is present throughout in a positive contributing way. Mild carbonation works well with the flavors and the body for a wonderful experience. Me likey.

Photo of JizackFH
3.84/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Just picked this up from Bierkraft in Brooklyn. Poured into my Stone Imperial Russian tulip.

A - small quickly diminishing head. Great color on this beer though.

S - Smelly yeasty and a bit spicy. Definetly smells like a belgian strong pale.

T - Just as the smell indicated, belgian strong pale. i taste white grapes which is nice. A bitter finish at the end. Yeasty. Maybe a hint of lemon zest.

M - Medium body, not too thick. High carbonation makes a little hard to take down easily, but it still does go down nicely.

D - A little bit of strong alcohol but i like my beer that way. This goes down pretty smooth

All and all i really enjoyed this beer. Im usually not the biggest fan of this style of beer but this was nice. I have a second bottle to age until 2012 and i cannot wait to see what that turns out like. I really love stone beers and i think the whole vertical epic thing is a really cool and interesting idea. I just wish i could have gotten into it when it started. Sucks that I was 13 haha. oh well at least i get to enjoy the last 3 in the sereis. But again this beer was definetly worth it.

Photo of emmasdad
2.76/5  rDev -26.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Picked this one up yesterday afternoon, and as I have been somewhat underwhelmed by the majority of these Vertical Epic efforts, I expected nothing different here. Pours a clear medium golden color, with a diminishing white head that is gone within moments. On the nose I get some Welch's white grape juice, some fruity Belgian esters and white pepper. On the palate, the wine grapes are noticeable, and help lift up an otherwise pedestrian tripel. Lightly hoppy, with a long, lingering bitter finish. Decent, and certainly drinkable, but nothing epic, whatsoever.

Photo of kkipple
3.44/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Grabbed a few of these at my local booze-pusher for the low-low price of $5.99. Immediately interesting - THREE grape varietals in here (Muscat, Gewurztraminer, Sauvignon Blanc) and chamomile. Belgian pale as the base. Okay.

A. Deep red-gold, a disappointingly tiny head that doesn't fit, and seems a bit lifeless. No lace, no real retention. This seems like a flaw.

S. As this warms and opens up, things get more promising. This is a dry, yeast-forward Belgian with a good amount going on. You have the evident grape juice (white wine notes abound), clove, pepper, what I assume is the chamomile, some herby thing and a little bit of pale malt + sugar. Not the best nose, but curious and fun.

T. Follows suit - an unusual Belgian Strong Pale here. Dryish with some needed malt sugar heft in the mouthfeel, but the white grape is rather forward and adds a highly unusual quality - reminiscent of Allagash Victoria, but I haven't had many brews like this. There's a tidbit of lemon peel and pepper here, but the real star is the grape juice, which lends a sophisticated mustiness ('cause grapes are for cultured people) and some odd sweetness.

M / D. Medium body here, mid-low carbonation - I would have preferred a much more effervescent beer.

I'm not quite sure what to make of the 10.10.10. It is treading into some new territory and gets praise for that, but it could immediately be made better by fixing the carbonation / head retention issues and to be honest the base beer (sans grape) simply isn't that compelling. A curious, if flawed, beer. However, at the cheap price of $6 a bottle, this is worth a buy.

Photo of Beejay
3.7/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Clean amber brown with a nice white head that quickly turns into a ring. A good amount of bubbles rising form the bottom.

S: Definitely some Belgian character. Sweet with citrus notes and a bit of an herbal scent which I assume is the chamomile. I'd like to think I can smell the grapes.

T: Sharp, sweet and boozy. Definitely a wine character with a bit of a herbal thing. There is a bit of a sharpness to it. A bit of booze as well.

M: Medium to heavy mouthfeel. Very high carbonation.

D: Interesting but a bit on the strong side. It tastes like it needs a bit of time, but I can see this aging into a great beer.

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.6/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A solid pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces an almost three-finger thick, pale tan colored head. The beer is a bright, dark gold color that shows a brilliant, perfectly clear (mechanically so even), gold hue with copper highlights when held up to the light. Interesting, in a wincing sort of way, I completely wasn't expecting that, but I actually don't know if I dislike it. The beer smells sort of funky, like a ripe, buttery cheese and a second look has me convinced that this is actually the aromas of the grapes used in this beer; it is a touch catty, somewhat like crushed, still green weeds (to messy to be just grass) and spicy like milk-weed backed by phenolic cloves, some woody pepper and a spiciness that seems characteristic of oak (is this aged in oak, I hadn't thought so). The nose on this is very, very interesting, I am still not quite sure what to think of it, but I am still intrigued.

Lightly sweet tasting at the first sip and it definitely tastes of grapes, funky Sauvignon like flavors some Gewurztraminer acidity along with notes of lime, perhaps a touch of tropical fruit, kiwi notes as well as some grassiness. This has more flavors from grapes than it does from the beer-derived ingredients. The yeast probably plays the biggest secondary role with notes of clove, some warming-spicy alcohol, a touch of ginger and an earthiness that tastes quite a bit like coriander and it also brings out much of the grape flavors noted before. Malt? I am not sure that this plays much of a role here, there is some pale malt character in the middle as well as a touch of cracker like grain, but both of these are subtle next to the expressive grape character. As the beer warms up more of the pale malt presence becomes noticeable. The body of this is not heavy considering the strength, it does have some viscosity to it and it has enough heft to be felt on the tongue; not light by any means, but also not thick or rich.

This will definitely be an interesting one to age. I am really not too sure what to think of this; it certainly is not bad, but the heavy grape focus seems a bit out of place. Despite not really liking the flavors and aromas here, they are so interesting that I am intrigued enough to keep on drinking this and figuring out what is going on; this is a fairly complex beer, it has a lot going on & it is making my head a bit fuzzy (so it can't be all that bad). In the end I'll just have to simply call this beer an experience!

Photo of berebrando
4.25/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

a white head dissipates quickly, leaving a simple lacing, and a small ring of foam where the glass meets the beer. The smell is boozy, bananas, candy, belgian yeast and stone fruit. The phightin phils (ugh) just took a 1-nuthin' lead over the gints. The beer is lightly puckering with notes of apple, bananas, something subtly sour and spicy. She, who must be obeyed, and is also a wine aficionado, claims that the grapes in this beer are all used in white wine - and you can taste it - and she says that Muscat, in particular, is a very sweet wine. Aw, mouthfeel - yes, it feels good in my mouth. Drinkable - yes, or I would've left a more critical critique. Good beer, it's a good year. Cheers.

Photo of nkersten
3.43/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a golden honey with a soap bubble head. Smell is strong yeast and cloves, some banana, hops and malt buried behind. Taste follows smell, slightly more noticeable hops and lots of yeasty tastes. More like a triple then a Belgian pale ale. I cant seem to pick up any of the grapes or chamomile. Maybe a slight white wine grape flavor in the finish, but it is mild. Mouthfeel is super dry and a slight bit tart, the carbonation is soft. Drinkability is ok, but for the price i may not revisit this one with so many better Belgians around.

Photo of JoePat
4.34/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a golden straw color with a slight haze and a thick white head.

The aroma is amazing I get a little bready malt deep under the white wine and bubble gum aromas. If there ever was a white wine bubble gum I can imagine this smells like it would taste.

This beer gets most of its flavors from the yeast. I made a homebrew using some must and a belgian yeast and this has some very similar flavors. This also has some white wine flavor in the after taste.

Very smooth and syrupy texture on the tongue. The alcohol doesn't come through and for a 9.5% beer this is pretty drinkable but definately not something I want tor drink alot of.

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

Poured in an MJ tasting glass.

Pours a deep golden color with egg white head (two fingers at first) that does not last. Leaves a whisp of foam on top with some nice lacing.

Aromas are focused around a winey base. No malt, no hops. "White wine" aroma dominates.

First sip is a belgian pale (some malt with lots of yeasty character), with a touch of white wine. Reminds me of a "stimulo" from Witkap. Alcohol is barely noticable.

Mouthfeel is very dry. Almost to the point of puckering. Not a sour pucker, but a dry, almost astringent, pucker. Like a highly oaked dry white wine.

Very drinkable, very refreshing, for such a high gravity beer.

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

Appearance: Relatively clear, golden-orange with yeast and minimal head.

Smell: Belgian, herbal.

Taste: Sweet-sour grapes and Belgian yeast with some spices and funk... It's different.

Mouthfeel: It's smooth enough with a lingering finish.

Drinkability: I don't know. If you like Belgians it's good, and the grapes give it a unique sweet and sour funk, but I wouldn't be able to drink this year round.

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

A: Poured a light golden color with good carbonation and a nice white head

S: Pepper, some fruits, chamomille

T: Plenty of flavor and pop upfront. Pepper, spice, chamomille with a hint of bubble gum and white grapes

M: Good feel, well carbonated, nice amount of booze

D: Not one of the best VE's

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

Stone was my gateway brewer. I got into beer because of their Stone IPA and eventually Ruination. I have an affinity for them, and I love their brewery, the gardens, their attitude, the whole nine yards.

I did not, however, love this beer.

Appearance: Pours like a Chardonnay, a yellow-ish pale hued brew with hardly any carbonation. Seemed way too flat. Having tried two bottles, I can honestly say this wasn't just a bum bottle, it's just a very low carbed brew. All Lost Abbey jokes aside, perhaps that was what they were going for? Although I can't imagine why. Hardly any lacing and bubbles seem hard to come by.

Smell: Pretty nice, actually. The muscat grapes are the first to peak through, followed shortly thereafter by the herbal chamomile. The hebalness combined with the grapes would instantly make me think wine before I'd ever get to beer. The only real indicator of the beer quality is the Belgian yeast, which becomes more apparent as it warms.

Taste: To be honest, I thought this bland. The smell yields similar tastes, but they are all very thin on the tongue and rapidly dissipate. The grapes are pleasant while they are there, and the herbal qualities are there too, but they are gone as soon as the came, and the palate is left wondering where all the flavors went. It reminds me of a flat champagne to be honest. I made a joke how this was like a Cantillon experiment that never would have left the brewery. Everyone kind of laughed, but it's true: Cantillon does release beers much like this one: they just would have done a few more batches or tossed some wild yeast in there first before it ever would have hit the market.

Mouthfeel: Again, the lack of carbonation really kills this beer. No effervescence at all, making the flavors feel still and slightly off. I don't know if in the next two years the yeast will continue its carbonation adventure, but all we can do is hope.

Drinkability: Alcohol isn't huge. I'd have guessed 7%, only for it to be considerably higher. Outside of that, the drinkability feels a little weak. The flavors aren't assertive enough to really make you want to pick up the glass. I kept putting my pours away, hoping as it warmed it would yield more. It just never did.

I hope I don't seem to harsh, but I was hoping for a lot more here. The flavors are good, they're just thin and fade quickly. I hope over the next two years they can round into something altogether more flavorful, and who knows? Grapes can yield themselves to again. However, I'd say as of right now, the 09.09.09 and the 08.08.08 are both significantly better. I applaud the creativity, I just was left hoping for more across the board.

Photo of avalon07
4.05/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a tulip glass. Had an amber color and a hazy consistency. There was an inch of foamy, fairly long-lasting head. OK lacing.

S: A very vinous aroma, with hints of malt and hops.

T: As it is with the smell, the taste has a dominant vinous character. Also has traces of hops, malt, and wheat making for an interesting flavor. Not in keeping with most BSPAs, but is still tasty.

M: A highly carbonated beer with a dry finish. Medium-bodied.

D: An unusual, but drinkable beer.

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

typical color for the style, a glowing golden copper with a very, very, very slight haze. a generous head (though still a bit small for the style) is almost pure white. it sticks around at one-fingered height and leaves some decent lacing.

yeasty aroma with a touch of funkiness likened to a saison, but with some light biscuit malts and plenty of floral characteristics from both the hops and i assume from the hibiscus as well. a bit of fruits and some clove reminiscent of a witbier and some lighter fruitiness maybe coming from the grape additions, though I wouldn't have picked that out without it being labeled on the bottle.

yeasty in the flavor as well. typical belgian pale ale flavors strike first with some belgian tripel fruitiness and booziness coming in next. some green apple sours it up and there is a discernible funk in there too. grapes impart a dry finish, but never come to the forefront of the flavor which seems to be quite a mashup of tons of belgian flavors that don't quite come together. Maybe with some age.

pretty standard for the style, but a bit prickly carbonation on a light/medium body.

drinks ok. boozy and all over the place with too many things going on in the flavor. I like complex beers, and I like stone (a lot), but things just don't completely come together for me. I will still buy another to age to see how things round out, but I'm kind of confused as to what to make of this now.

Photo of ManuelHerrera
3.87/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Honestly I wasn't sure what I was getting into with Vertical Epic...mostly because the label at Bevmo described the 09.09.09 edition which thoroughly threw me off.

Nevertheless the beer (poured from a 22oz bomber) was pale golden with a modest head and decent lacing. The aroma of plantains and mild citrus, and a bit of soapiness came through. Still pleasant.

Meanwhile the flavor was light surprisingly thin. It's definitely way less aggressive than anything Stone normally puts out. There is an interesting herbal hint coming from the chamomile, the banana comes through, and mild grapes.

Overall a little surprising, worth a taste but not the best entry I've had from Stone to date.

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

Clear golden beer with a medium sized white head.

Smells malty with a fruity wine aroma. Little bit of coriander and honeysuckle. There is a white wine smell here; mostly I am picking up peach and roses from it.

Starts out sweet with a strong wine flavor and hop bitterness in the finish. There is a distinct sourness to this beer, nothing like an enamel stripping chardonnay but there nonetheless. Sweet then sour then bitter describes the sensation. Mostly this is grape and lemon flavored but the mix of beer and wine flavors is weird.

Mouthfeel is OK.

Not sure I like this. The mix of wine and beer elements confuses my mouth and brain a bit. This is without a doubt a unique beer flavor. This is a beer you just have to taste and decide for yourself if you like it.

Photo of MrDanno96
4.3/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a bright golden yellow color with a couple of fingers of frothy white head. The head dissipated fairly quickly and left a decent amount of sticky lacing.

S: A good amount of floral and herbal aroma, with that traditionally ester like Belgian yeast in the background.

T: The flavor was really complex and enjoyable. Some notes of a traditional BPA up front with a good amount of citrus. For me, the grapes really came through in the mid palate as the flavor turned pleasantly sour with notes of green apple as well. The finish was slightly bitter.

M: Medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

D: Amazingly drinkable for 9.6%. Now I know why I didn't feel so great this morning after drinking a few of these! Another great Stone beer.

Photo of irishking1977
3.92/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Dull golden hue with a minor head that leaves a bit of lacing.

S: Lots of herbal notes, also lemon and citrus aroma as well. Belgian yeast noticeable as well.

T: This is a pretty good interpretation of a Belgian pale ale, with a twist that only Stone can provide. Aside from typical BPA characteristics, there is some hits of grape and a floral herbal quality, not unlike heather ales such as Fraoch.

M: Carbonation is decent, but could be slightly bumped up a notch. Finishes with a mild floral or hoppy note.

D: Not bad; I like it. Undoubtedly, there are better BPA's out there, made by those who are known for them. However, this could stand toe to toe with any of them, and still hold it's own.

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

My 1st review on BA.

Bottle poured into a oversized wine glass.

App- Golden color, a bit hazy and shimmery in the glass, small 1 finger little off white head, dissapted quickly. Very nice dissaptaing lacing down the glass.

Smell- Very floral and lemony to me. Smell took a while to develop. Could have been a bit too cold when poured.

Taste- Has the taste that I love in a beer. That undeniable beligan loveliness. Not as much herbs as I would have thought and def had a taste of a more potent white wine with the grape coming through at the end for me.

Mouthfeel- Clean, crisp, exactly what I was expecting to find in the 10. Had a bit of sediment on the lip after 3 or 4 sips

Drink- Was very smooth on the tounge and the palate. Would easily have a second bottle while enjoying with friends if any of my friends could put down the BL or Coronas long enough to try good beer. Give it 4/5.

Photo of flexabull
4.42/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy gold color, with a nice white head.

Aromas are very nice. Reminds me a bit of a Tripel or a Wild Ale. Hints of sourness, funk, grass, vinegar, oak, and grapes. I am digging sniffing this one.

Taste is very good, interesting, and quite unique. Starts with a very full and thick creaminess. Beer then settles into some crisp green apple and white wine like flavors. Finish is nice and crisp, dry, with some tart lemon zest.

Mouthfeel is superb. Almost perfect, well rounded, full, with a snappy finish.

Drinkability is good. I am impressed. I think this will definitely be a love/hate type of beer, but please put me in the love camp. I really like the uniqueness of this one, and I think this is a perfect candidate for cellaring, might have to grab a couple more to age beyond 12.12.12.

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