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Belgo Anise Imperial Russian Stout - Stone Brewing Co.

Belgo Anise Imperial Russian StoutBelgo Anise Imperial Russian Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
80
good

886 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 886
Reviews: 439
rAvg: 3.5
pDev: 22%


Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: EgadBananas on 05-23-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 886 | Reviews: 439 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by superdedooperboy:
Photo of superdedooperboy
superdedooperboy

Georgia

3.95/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 "Odd Year" Release. 22-ounce brown glass bottle poured into a tulip glass. Served at cellar temperature, approximately 50 degrees F.

Pours deep, dark brown, nearly imperceptibly so, as it appears at first glance black as pitch. A large, fluffy head of cinnamon-tinged foam builds to a nearly explosive crescindo before slowly imploding and settling into a thick crown, leaving a beautiful latticework as it falls away. Clearly a product of its "Belgo" yeast roots.

It's difficult to discern much of anything other than the black licorice-like aroma of anise in the nose -- there seems to be a faint hint of espresso mixed in with the root-beery presence, but it's almost impossible to say that it isn't just an expectation rather than actual perception. Either way, I love the aroma of anise, so it isn't necessarily a bad thing (and, as the name not-so-subtly announces, the beer IS brewed with anise).

Luckily for those who always balked at the presence of a black jellybean in their fruity pile, licorice doesn't quite dominate the palate. The rather sweet malt base is almost milk-chocolatey, with some fruity, cherry-like notes nuzzling up beside before the anise jumps back in, creating a flavor not unlike root beer but with a creamier mouthfeel and roastier flavor. Hop character is almost non-existent except for the presence of a touch of pine and citrus along with a powerful dryness that leads into the finish; more anise and chocolate continue through the back and into the finish, with a lingering sensation of both that is rather enjoyable if not a tad bit cloying.

Though it's fermented with a Belgo (read: Belgian) yeast strain, the characteristics of the yeast are surprisingly absent; one would expect particular phenols and/or esters from most Belgian yeasts, but neither are omnipresent. Instead we seem to have a very well-rounded Russian Imperial Stout (or Imperial Russian Stout, depending on personal word order preference, as Stone demonstrates) with an obvious addition of anise. Though oak chips are mentioned on the bottle, they don't appear to play much of a role in flavor, any vanilin probably being masked by the anise.

Very drinkable, at least for the first half of the bottle before the 10.5% ABV kicks in; the somewhat light body (for the style) combined with a creamy mouthfeel help out immensely. A bit of a soy sauce-like character is noticeable at times but only rarely and hardly keeping the beer from being enjoyable. Not for licorice-haters yet not necessarily for licorice-lovers either, this is an interesting RIS to say the least, and a rather tasty and interesting beer to say the best. Highly recommended for anyone with an interest in interesting beer; not so much for those with a hatred for licorice or root beer -- or Imperial Stout, for that matter.

Serving type: bottle

07-23-2011 06:24:13 | More by superdedooperboy
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Pours near black and sits black and opaque in the glass. Small bubbly head sonn retreats but some lacing is provided.

Aroma: sweet, woodsy with a hint of vanilla.

Flavor: robust and rich with a very obvious contribution from the anise, a more moderate impact of the oak, and some funky-fruity aspects from the Belgian yeast. Probably less sweet than the anise makes it seem, but seems a little too sweet.

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Belgo Anise Imperial Russian Stout from Stone Brewing Co.
80 out of 100 based on 886 ratings.