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15th Anniversary Escondidian Imperial Black IPA - Stone Brewing Co.

15th Anniversary Escondidian Imperial Black IPA15th Anniversary Escondidian Imperial Black IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

1,373 Ratings
THE BROS
84
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1373
Reviews: 711
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 12.8%


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

Style | ABV
American Black Ale |  10.80% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: HopHead84 on 08-16-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Ratings: 1,373 | Reviews: 711 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of abrand
abrand

Illinois

4.48/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

23 ounce bottled August 2011 poured into pint glass

This pours a deep brown to almost black color with a tan 1 finger head that quickly fades. Smell is fairly sweet with chocolate with a nice malt backbone. Plenty of espresso and raisins on the nose as well. Taste is still pretty hot for being bottled for 1 year. Some caramel and sweet fruits with a very bitter roasted malt backbone. Hoppy finish. Quite complex. Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied. Overall this is amazing. Full of complexity and still holding well after a year.

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2012 01:43:37 | More by abrand
Photo of beergoot
beergoot

Colorado

4.13/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Opaque black body with a rich, creamy tan head. Smell includes licorice, molasses, caramel, cocoa with a nice floral hop scent peaking through. Taste is toasty with a buttery feel. Bitter chocolate and slightly charred bread. A stiff bitterness pops up midway through the tasting and lingers through the finish. Alcohol warmth hits you along with the bitterness. Medium-heavy body, smooth and dextrous.

Rich, malty, and unforgettable. A must for heavy-hitting dark beer lovers.

Serving type: bottle

08-23-2012 21:17:50 | More by beergoot
Photo of Trueant1
Trueant1

Minnesota

4.1/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer is not exactly true to style it seems. However, it is an excellent brew!

Pours like a stout. Black with a dark tan head. Thick lacing.

Cat urine like smells (many dipas have this), spice, alcohol and cat litter smells in the background.

Taste is heaven to me. Bitter/oily hops up front. Chocolate porters tastes abound. Alcohol booziness, oil, and extremely sweet malts come through as well. A nice "fresh hop" aftertaste surprise is what sets this brew apart. Wonderfully layered tastes!
Mouth-feel consists of fine carbonation, oil like slickness, and bitter aftertaste.

Great brew!

Serving type: bottle

08-23-2012 07:06:17 | More by Trueant1
Photo of beer2day
beer2day

North Carolina

4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Has the look of a classic dark stout. Opaque black pour with two fingers of very dark mocha head. Excellent head retention and lace. One of the best glasses of beer I've seen.

Nose is strong with roast malt and citrus hops. Very strong, if possible even too strong. Notes of chocolate under the roast and citrus, but you really have to hunt for it.

Chocolate, coffee, roast malt, dry hops all come in up front followed by a strong coffee, bitter chocolate, dry citric finish. Alcohol hides well, but you can feel the burn. Lots of complex flavors, but they seem to lack enough coherency to make this great. Pretty darn good, though.

Feel is a bout right. The hops give it a bit of a slippery, oily feel.

Overall, a very nice sipper.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2012 01:14:22 | More by beer2day
Photo of RblWthACoz
RblWthACoz

Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a good beer, but doesn't really mesh with the style that well. Seems a bit thick on the character for a black ale; almost porter like. Has some nice hop characeristics, but doesn't really bring all that I would hope it would. Especially for an anniversary ale. Nice beer. An "okay" black ale.

Serving type: bottle

08-05-2012 21:26:23 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of paytonpowell
paytonpowell

Minnesota

3.78/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Intensely black with an inch and a half of a frothy mocha head from an aggressive pour that does not slowly diminish but rather hangs about like a root beer float. I noticed an apparent viscosity during the pour of this thick black libation.

S: A thorough blast of aged hops that mellows into a cappuccino like aroma with serious notes of strong black coffee and a mild hinting layer of dark chocolate. There is hardly a trace of alcohol in the nose or urgent pungency of fresh hops.

T: My initial impression was rather torn, as it splits the difference between an Imperial IPA and an Imperial Stout. The first sip brings the tongue the heavy caramelized malts of an Imperial IPA, tiny amounts of hop bitterness alert ones sense of taste of something that never truly arrives: a full Imperial IPA. Instead this initial confusion eases into thick dark chocolate malt and mild coffee like bitterness of a proper stout. This warm rich taste lingers enduringly with pleasant stale citrus like hoppy taste much to my delight. Reminiscent of orange chocolate.

M: Thick!!! Just a slight presence of effervescence remains and the really truly brings this beer into the stout real with a full-bodied heavy mouthfeel thick, sticky and rich.

O: This brew has most effectively descended into the realm of the stouts after a solid year of aging. Almost all hop presence has faded into the background minus a surprisingly stale aged hop aroma. I never thought aging such creation would lead to such a pleasantly drinkable behemoth but it definitely has me intrigued as to what aging similar brews will lead to. Definitely a success in experimentation!

Serving type: bottle

08-02-2012 05:43:37 | More by paytonpowell
Photo of mactrail
mactrail

California

2.45/5  rDev -41.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

This is so sharply alcoholic. With the bitterness, it tastes like a Chinese medicinal wine. It also wins the prize for the weirdest, most unpleasant aroma for a non-spoiled beer. It's like a wet felt hat filled with the parsley silage from the back of the vegetable bin.

The stuff looks nice enough in the glass, though it's just black with a thin beige head. Not very drinkable overall. It just seems like some kind of hop joke. Mouthfeel is hard to tell. It makes my lips hurt.

Personally, I think they are toying with us. Or else it's a chemistry experiment from the Escondido High School science fair. At least Stone doesn't don't overcharge, so I sometimes lapse from better judgement to try one of their loopy brews. From the 22 oz bottle. Add a case of Olde English 800 for an excellent frat party. "Dude, see if you can keep this down!"

Serving type: bottle

08-02-2012 05:42:15 | More by mactrail
Photo of ngeunit1
ngeunit1

California

4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a dark brown-black with a finger of frothy khaki-chocolate colored head. The head fades down fairly slowly leaving behind some nice lacing.

S - Aroma is a mix of roasted chocolate malts with pine and citrus hops, and some coffee, black licorice, and a bit of booze.

T - Starts off with a mix of orange and citrus hops, roasted chocolate malts, some bitterness, and some black licorice. Through the middle, some pine hops and bitterness comes through with some coffee and a touch of dark fruit. The finish is a mix of roasted chocolate, pine and citrus hops, bitterness, coffee, and a bit of booze.

M - Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth with a dry, bitter, roasty, and warming finish.

D - Very drinkable. Nice big Black IPA. Lots of hops and enough roastiness for a good balance.

Serving type: bottle

07-28-2012 03:56:27 | More by ngeunit1
Photo of Beerlover
Beerlover

Minnesota

4.6/5  rDev +9%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is an amazing brew! Stone you Great glorious bastards! I love porters and i love ipas, especially imperial ones! this is not a porter but the blackness and roasty malts reminded me a bit of a porter with less coffee and or smokiness.

It looks dark and beautiful like a nice glass of porter or a mug of delish coffee. the smell for me was just average i didn't get much nose off the beer which is kinda sad but beer is for DRINKIN not SMELLIN !!

the taste is GLORIOUS! and i only use that word for my favs, i gave this beer a perfect 10 in my personal notes meaning i will buy it without hesitation if i ever find another bottle and I LOVE IT! flavors of roasted malts and hops perfectly balanced (im my own humble opinion)

i think my fav about this beer is the fact that it is an imperial brew, meaning it doesnt exactly have more hops in it or a higher i.b.u. but just that the alchohol content is higher than a normal brew of this type (when does Stone EVER have a "normal" brew with the exception of "arrogent bastard") the alchohol % on this beautiful beast of a brew is 10.5 %! AWE.SOME. and and normally anything over 9 I usually start to pick up at least slight booziness or tasting the "kick" but this, THIS is sooo smooth with no "booziness" apparent. PERFECT BALANCE!

ahh i wish i cud find another bottle to age a year or maybe two more. i think the fact that i aged this a bit in my fridge (6 months) really helped perfect this beer. i had split one with a buddy of mine a while ago (about 8 months) and do not rembember it being this great (maybe for lack of palate experiance... i suck at spelling sorry!) but yeah if u like dark ales and you happen to find this gem BUY IT or send it my way please!

this should be an all year relese. kinda like they did with "sublimely self righteous ale" maybe this should be called "sublimely self righteous 2" or how about "Super Sexy Swingin' Sublimely self righteous radical ass ale" idk maybe thats a bit overboard but to describe this ale, its just... undescribable! (again sorry about the spelling)

ohh and one more thig... IT GETS BETTER AS YOU DRINK IT, let it warm a bit i just got a hint of bittersweet chocolate! WHAT!??!

aaaand its done. no more left... SAD!! a tear is welling up in my eye. love this beer! "beerlover" LOVERS IT! done. d.u.n.

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2012 04:08:06 | More by Beerlover
Photo of Greywulfken
Greywulfken

New York

4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours stout black, thick head that slims to a thin rim

S: black and chocolate malts, espresso notes

T: bitter espresso, some chocolate... roasted, toasted malts, some hoppy woodsy flavors

M: dry, bitter, mellow; mild aftertaste

O: I get confused with what a beer should taste like when it has too much going on in its description, and I'm not a big black ale drinker - I suppose this is a decent black ale, but DIPA? I dunno. When I hear "imperial IPA" I expect some citrus or pine or brighter hop flavors; this was (to me) a basic black ale with a high abv - which is fine, but I wasn't blown away, nor is it my favorite black ale or black DIPA or DIPA. Not a re-buy for me, but may be spot-on for true lovers of the style.

Serving type: bottle

06-24-2012 23:09:03 | More by Greywulfken
Photo of david131
david131

California

4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours an absolutely pitch black with a very thick and creamy mocha head that has excellent retention.

S- Pine, some citrus, caramel, and a slightly roasted aspect on the tail end. Rather deep and complex, considering the style.

T- Sweet and hoppy. The malt aspect is rather pronounced, not that it is a bad thing. The piney hops work well with the sweet, roasted malt. Interesting and intriguing.

M- Slightly spicy carbonation and some alcohol warmth.

O- A very well made beer. The alcohol content, while noticeable, is pretty well masked. Still, it is a bit rich and a bit of a sipper.

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2012 03:44:45 | More by david131
Photo of BostonHops
BostonHops

Massachusetts

4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle served in a snifter.
bottled 3 weeks prior to tasting.

pours a dark cola brown, sits an opaque black; yields a 1" frothy tan head that demonstrates great retention and leaves respectable lacing. nose offers some citric hoppiness - a touch of pine - with subtle roasty notes... maybe a hint of chocolate.

taste follows and exceeds the nose. flavorful and tasty with citrus (notably grapefruit), pine, roasted malts, and secondary notes of chocolate and even a hint of smoke. alcohol presence noted but not overpowering considering the north of 10% ABV... medium bodied in the mouth with average carbonation.

overall a damn impressive beer. thoroughly enjoying this one.

(originally reviewed: 08-22-2011)

Serving type: bottle

06-20-2012 00:55:31 | More by BostonHops
Photo of ccoff
ccoff

Colorado

4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours black. Medium, tan head with a thick, sticky lacing. This beer is beautiful to look at.

Strong roasted smell, chocolate, piney hops.

Tastes like bitter dark chocolate, spicy, very bitter hops. Resiny hops. Roasted up front and in the long, bitter finish. Complex, lots of different flavors coming at you, but perhaps none more than the dark chocolate.

Serving type: bottle

06-19-2012 17:52:03 | More by ccoff
Photo of animortician
animortician

California

4.05/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: I gave this an average score on appearance because it just isn't black, not even close. Brown ipa just doesn't sound cool I guess but thats what this is. I was expecting something darker.

S: No hard or sharp hop aromas just really smooth hop smell even though this was aged for a bit. smelled like a fresh hop ale. Other aromas were there as well I can't place the smell its not the what I would call malty but I guess it kind of has to be. smells kinda like arrogant bastard.

T: Very interesting. Same as the smell it has an arrogant bastard hidden flavor to it. Not very bitter at all. Going back to the appearance, since its called a Black IPA I was expecting some dark deep roasted malt flavors but there just aren't any. I also was expecting more hops.

O: This beer just really doesn't live up to its name if you ask me. Its a great beer but its not black, and doesn't taste like a beer brewed with really dark malt and it doesn't seem as hoppy as an IPA should be. The labels commentary on our consumerism culture is very good though!

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2012 06:55:00 | More by animortician
Photo of Dawgmeat
Dawgmeat

California

4.95/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The pour was a thick dark black with a large (2-3 finger) medium brown creamy head which had good retention reducing to a thick puddling thus creating some excellent sheets of lacing.

The aroma was of a pine hop, a roasted grain malt and a moldy yeast with notes of coffee, caramel, licorice, chocolate and a decent alcohol tinge.

The taste was a hoppy, malty and a tad sweet with a very mild hint of caramel and chocolate at first then progressed into a bitter, roasty, hoppy flavor with a big coffee note and a mild alcohol presence at the end. The flavor hung on for a good long time proceeding the swallow letting the hoppy roastiness settle in.

Mouthfeel was a bit beyond medium in body with a dry, oily texture and a nice lively carbonation.

Overall an exceptionally well balanced Black IPA with just the right amount of everything working together.

I'm fortunate to be nearby the brewery itself, of course I'm a little biased. Their is a certain smell and flavor that comes with any of the Stone brews and it hooks me all the time.

The "Imperial Black IPA" is such a very complex and delicious explosion on ones palette. This is currently my best and favorite beer of all time. I'm actually still able to purchase this as of 6/1/12 at a local liquor store for $6.99 ;-)

Serving type: bottle

06-02-2012 03:30:39 | More by Dawgmeat
Photo of Giovacchini
Giovacchini

California

4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- pours a black appearance with a finger and a half tan head.

S- chocolate, leather, pine, coffee, and bread.

T- chocolate, molasses, dark fruits, hop bitterness, leather, tobacco, and alcohol.

M- strong carbonation with lingering bitterness and some heat from the alcohol.

O- I tried this beer last fall a little after it was released and I found some again recently and decided to see how it changed. I remember their being a little more fruitiness from the hops. Otherwise this beer is still awesome even with some age on it.

Serving type: bottle

05-27-2012 04:17:09 | More by Giovacchini
Photo of Hopstamon
Hopstamon

New Jersey

3.63/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber poured into a imperial pint glass.

A - Poured a pitch black with a tan creamy head. Decent lacing.

S - Lots of in-your-face hoppiness dominate.

T - Taste doesn’t stray too far from the aroma. I get a lot of piney hops up front with some chocolatey malts on the backside. The bitterness grabs a hold of your palate and doesn't let go. A rather large amount of alcohol creeps up.

M - Medium-thick bodied with moderate carbonation. Thicker and creamier than expected. The bitterness is a little harsh. I can definitely feel the alcohol’s presence in this beer.

O - Not one of my favorites from Stone. I had bigger expectations on this one. I am a huge Stone fan... always have some on hand... I dig BIPA's...but I I didn't fall in love with this anniversary version as much as I have in the past.

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2012 15:25:07 | More by Hopstamon
Photo of barczar
barczar

Kentucky

4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle is 9 months beyond date of bottling.

Pours a clear deep brown with garnet highlights and a solid one finger cappuccino head that dissipates into a ring of foam, leaving no lacing.

Dark fruit, roasted malt, chocolate, caramel, and coffee dominate the aroma, with a hint of nuttiness and a muted grapefruit finish.

Flavor showcases much more hop character, starting with grapefruit tartness that makes my mouth water. It lingers throughout the profile, revealing more complex tropical fruit flavors. A solid roast malt backbone supports the hops well, allowing them to shine without overpowering them. Hints of coffee grounds accompany the bitter hop finish. Dark fruit flavors emerge as it warms, and malt becomes more pronounced.

Body is on the heavy side, with fairly low carbonation and a significant alcohol warmth.

Very interesting beer that is a contrast in malt and hop, but definitely biased toward the hop side. Alcohol content is fairly surprising!

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2012 04:51:08 | More by barczar
Photo of JimmyTango
JimmyTango

California

4.25/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours like an imperial stout-black and thick with a big dark brown head. Smells like hops, lots of very tasty hops. Licorice, toast, and carmel malts are also there in the nose, but the main impression is hops and black. The taste follows the smell, but with more of a toast malt than the carmel smell suggested, more grassy hops than anticipated, but accompanied by the oily, piney, soapy hops that the nose promised. A touch of citrus rind, but nothing like in Sublimely Self Righteous. Pretty chewy and sugary, but without much sweetness. Bitterness is gnar, but not unchecked by the big black malts. This was great, hella great. Very different from SSR in a more deep and complex way. I’d say this is for sure gnarlier, but not any less drinkable. Big. Huge! I love that it still manages to come across as something completely different from a hoppy stout… I loved it, but will probably reach for the SSR when I’m in an IPA mood. This is more overwhelming.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2012 21:58:24 | More by JimmyTango
Photo of larryi86
larryi86

Delaware

4.08/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber poured into a snifter

A- Black with a two finger light brown head.

S- Citrus hops, roasted malts, some caramel malts and chocolate.

T- Again citrus hops upfront, roasted malts and some dark chocolate in the middle, finish is piney with a hint of burnt coffee.

M- Smooth, medium body, crisp.

O- Overall a solid beer from Stone. I feel the 10.8% ABV is well hidden making this easy to drink.

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2012 01:40:25 | More by larryi86
Photo of Ego
Ego

New Jersey

4.6/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

crazy windy night here in jersey...
22oz bomber pulled from my cellar, august 2011 dated

eyes...
on a quick glimpse I thought I was pouring dimetap.. but then as it gathers it becomes more pitch, black with perhaps a little light shining through, head settles down to a tarp cover barely treading water above the blackness, plenty of legs on this one alright, the lacing is nice and consistent, a nice blanket of bubbles washing up and down the sides of the glass on a gentle swirl, a nice looking brew.

nose...
really hard to explain at first schnozz, vanilla glazed dark chocolate, molasses and faint coffee, brown sugar, darts of alcohol stab at the olfactory as well, really interesting mix, there is a clean consistency to it.

taste etc...
it is funny how you almost expect a black/dark beer to be hefty sometimes. I had to remind myself what style is afoot here... This drinks very smooth and leaves a rich flavor in its considerable wake. What looks like really used motor oil winds up as light as an IPA, perhaps with a shade less carbonation than the usual 'bright' american IPAs. Light molasses and vanilla on the front end of things with a nice deep bitter chocolate/ash back end that lingers (insert joke about people who linger here). The ABV is surprisingly mild in the mouth but definitely is letting my stomach (and soon my head I suppose) aware. This is consistent throughout the bomber. Just every sip is a wonderful experience, full of flavor and character delivering flavor upon every step of the sipping experience.

verdict?
One helluva beer. I tend to think Stone is over rated here sometimes but then they go and stick this in my craw... touche, well played my lads (hey, you watch game of thrones and try not to get all 'thee' and 'thus' my lady...)

in the player: Left Lane Cruiser - All You Can Eat

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2012 04:25:30 | More by Ego
Photo of spinrsx
spinrsx

Ontario (Canada)

4.13/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bomber from Bristol Farms Palm Desert CA for 6.99

Appearance - Black/brown colour with a large size frothy light brown coloured head. There is a low amount of carbonation showing and there is some fantastic lacing. The head lasted for over 5 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, hops, chocolate, grapefruit/oranges

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste hops mixed with malts, chocolate, and hops. There is also quite a bit of a roasted/burnt nut flavour. It ends with a hoppy bittersweet chocolate aftertaste.

Overall - Lots of imperial stout qualities mixed with a good dose of hops. For an black ale I think I preferred the The Alchemist / Ninkasi / Stone - More Brown Than Black IPA, but this is still a fantastic beer. The alcohol is very well hidden and to me it's a beefed up Self Righteous.

Serving type: bottle

04-08-2012 02:15:36 | More by spinrsx
Photo of MagicJeff
MagicJeff

Georgia

3.78/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into snifter

A: Dark and creamy upon initial pour. less than a finger head dissipates fast into haze. some lace upon conclusion

S: Dark malts come first. some tangerine and citrus. slight toffee and even vanilla. some alcohol.

T: this is where I'm conflicted. chocolate and pine. citrus mid-taste. finishes nutty, like pecans almost. After it warmed, the alcohol made itself known. extremely complex

M: Very creamy. Pours heavy, leads to a smooth feel.

Overall: Different than any other Stone brew I've had, and that is not a bad thing. Lacks the citrus taste that I love about Stone. Malts make up for it in every way. The alcohol is present but the beer is still drinkable. The complexity of this beer is astounding--I don't think drinking this one time does it justice for a review. Looking forward to trying it again and seeing what I missed the first time.

Serving type: bottle

03-26-2012 05:09:26 | More by MagicJeff
Photo of yokken
yokken

Minnesota

2.6/5  rDev -38.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Got a bomber of this on my visit to California; I'll be visiting Stone in two days.

My father and I split this. First off, wow, that's thick. And it's certainly black. My first whiff had me reeling. It's extremely potent... hops flood my nasal passages. A pungent soy sauce flavor overwhelms me. It's very sweet.

The first sip is incredibly bitter. Sweet as well. The ABV of this beer doesn't hide, in my opinion, like some Double IPAs can do. I don't look forward to the next sip of this beer. And that's just it--this is a sipping beer. It's incredibly flavorful. It stops everything, and forces me to focus on how bitter and overwhelming the flavor is.

The aftertaste is the best part, and quite possibly the only thing I enjoy about this beer. There's an incredible coffee aftertaste reminding me of a coffee stout. I also detect chocolate and toffee undertones. Someone else here on BA noted figs as well, which I also subtly taste. But coffee and soy sauce are two huge flavors here, and I'm not the most fond of those. I'm much more of an IPA guy.

Compared to other black IPAs, this is something else entirely. It is so pungent, so powerful, so overwhelming, that I would probably never choose to drink this again. The flavor kills my palate more than a double IPA and I'm here wishing I had bought a bottle of something else. I love a lot of Stone's brews, but this sure isn't one of them.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2012 05:18:48 | More by yokken
Photo of metter98
metter98

New York

4.18/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer is jet black in color and poured with a half finger high dark tan head that died down rather quickly, leaving lacing on the surface and a ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light to moderately strong aromas of citrusy hops in the nose along with some notes of dark roasted malts.
T: A moderate to high amount of bitterness stands out in the overall taste, which also has notes of citrus and dark roasted malts.
M: It feels medium- to full bodied and crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. There are also some sticky hints of resin.
O: The bitterness in this beer is very bold and stands out in front of the other flavors. It’s not too difficult to drink considering its strength because the alcohol is well hidden from the taste.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2012 00:35:07 | More by metter98
15th Anniversary Escondidian Imperial Black IPA from Stone Brewing Co.
94 out of 100 based on 1,373 ratings.