15th Anniversary Escondidian Imperial Black IPA - Stone Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 1,369 | Reviews: 710 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by BeardedRiker:
3.58/5 rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5
Let me say first off that I was very much anticipating this beer after I first heard about it. When I tried Stone's Sublimely Self-Righteous Ale it blew my mind. I loved it. Then when I heard of another Black IPA by Stone it got me very excited.
The Escondidian is a good-looking brew. It's black as midnight. You can't see through it at all although I will say if you hold the bottle up the right way to a light source you can see sediment swirling around in it. The head doesn't get too big and it takes a little while to form into its lovely tan and creamy self. It has good retention and a bit of the head remains on top throughout drinking.
The smell is dominated by hops and booze. Tropical fruits and roastiness lay underneath. I couldn't get much more than that.
The taste is very much like the smell. Hops hit you really hard immediately with bitterness. Mango tropical fruit sweetness adds more complexity but it's quickly dominated by alcohol burn. I could get a bit of roasted malt (cocoa and coffee) in there but the hops and alcohol were too strong. Some molasses sweetness in there too like an RIS.
Mouthfeel is very syrupy throughout after a hoppy dry beginning. Medium carbonation and a medium-full body.
I'll be honest. I was disappointed in the Escondidian. I had high hopes for it, and why not? Stone routinely makes excellent beers and I love their SSR. All signs pointed to an awesome beer, however, the hops and alcohol in this are simply too strong and aren't balanced with the rest. I love hoppy beers and I tend to like high ABV beers too but in this case it's all too dominating. It's hard to taste awesome stout-like flavors when my taste buds are first bombarded by hops and then numbed by alcohol. I thought it might have just been my opinion but my brother who was drinking his own bottle with me agreed with everything I said. This isn't a bad beer. It tastes fine but it's not balanced. I'd choose the SSR over this any day.
Serving type: bottle
10-04-2011 21:49:54 | More by BeardedRiker
More User Reviews:
3.98/5 rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4
I am drinking a bottle that was brewed in August of 2011 on 10/26/2013.
This is not an IPA to me because all of the hop flavor has long since gone. That's ok though, because this has morphed into a quite tasty imperial stout. So, strangely enough, that's how I will review it.
A - opaque dark black.
S - very sweet, with dark fruit, fig and licorice notes. There is a slight hopiness left to it, but it's faint. It smells like a Russian imperial stout.
T - Very deep flavor. I get a taste of milk chocolate right off the bat with a depth of flavor that develops into figs, and then a flavor of very bitter deep roasted coffee that fades quickly. It's smooth but leaves a taste of booze on the tongue. Overall, very smooth.
M - Great. Heavy and chewy. Great for the style.
O - I can't say what the black IPA would be like had I tried this beer within 6 months of the brewing date. BUT, what I will say is that this is a delicious beer and very well crafted.
Serving type: bottle
10-27-2013 02:38:01 | More by Smooth-Hoperator
3.95/5 rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Poured from a 22oz bottle into a Schlafly tulip. Bottled 8/1/11, so more than 2yrs old now. Bought for $5.99 at Total Wine Tustin (great value).
A - Pitch black, nothing even around the edges. Mocha colored head leaves decent lacing.
S - Dark chocolate, has a weird turpentine smell, I expect it is from the aged hops. Not off-putting. Weird, but nice.
T - Dark chocolate upfront, also dark fruits (prunes, raisins, figs). A little sweet on the front end. You get that same flavor (turpentine) and black tea from the aged hops. You can definitely tell this beer was massively hopped.
M - Medium-heavy mouthfeel. Carbonation is low side of medium.
O - I think this is definitely past it's age, but still a great drink. The fresh version was even better because of the hop notes. This is still better than the Sublimely Self Righteous (which is also a great beer).
Serving type: bottle
09-28-2013 03:28:31 | More by jeff1973
15th Anniversary Escondidian Imperial Black IPA from Stone Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 1,369 ratings.