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Stone 11.11.11 Vertical Epic Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Stone 11.11.11 Vertical Epic AleStone 11.11.11 Vertical Epic Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

1,436 Ratings
THE BROS
92
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,436
Reviews: 468
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 16.76%
Wants: 40
Gots: 421 | FT: 16
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Chile Beer |  9.40% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

As with any good epic, herein lies the promise of larger-than-life experiences, heroics and twists & turns as the adventure unfolds. These bottle-conditioned ales are specifically designed to be aged until sometime after December 12th, 2012. Provided you can wait that long. At that time, enjoy them in a "vertical" tasting. Each one unique to it's year of release. Each with its own "twist & turn" in the plotline. Each one released one year, one month and one day from the previous year's edition. To remind you, the remaining dates are: 12.12.12

(Beer added by: JAramini on 11-10-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Stone 11.11.11 Vertical Epic Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,436 | Reviews: 468 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of TheManiacalOne
TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

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

Poured from a 22oz bottle into an imperial pint glass.

A: The beer is a light brown color, with a short dense off-white head that fades very slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains caramelized malts, Belgian yeast, cinnamon and chilies as advertised and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out with the odd but complementary combination of the cinnamon and chilies with a mild sweetness. Then a hearty malt character and Belgian yeast breadiness comes in. the hops presence is mild but complementary and brings a good balance. The after-taste is slightly bready and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Flavorful, goes down easily, not too filling, good kick, good variation of style, it’s a good beer to drink for a while if you’re looking for something different.

Serving type: bottle

07-10-2012 03:24:14 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of Jason
Jason

Massachusetts

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

22oz brown bomber with an obvious vintage date.

LOOK: Garnet amber color, healthy looking head.

SMELL: Cinnamon stick, Anaheim chilies, golden raisins, candied fruit, toasted grain, boozy alcohol.

TASTE: Cinnamon, mild chili pepper, toasted bread, dusty powdered clove, banana taffy, medicinal phenols, clean alcohol, hop bitterness, treacle, chaotic finish.

Nearly a palate overload, thankfully I prepared for this beer and I guess I am a pro more or less so I can roll with the punches. Flavors come in waves, cinnamon and chili then the Belgo-yeast character and of course the generous handful of hops all surrounded by a well balanced malt backbone. The heat, its from the alcohol ... not the chili. Possibly the most enjoyable Vertical Epic from Stone I have had that was not cellared.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2011 03:14:34 | More by Jason
Photo of MasterSki
MasterSki

Illinois

3.55/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

Another bottle shared by Chris (spycow). Served in a tulip.

A - White foam settles to a thick collar, wisps, and a few specks of lace. Transparent amber body.

S - Extremely vegetal - you can smell the chiles alright. Hint of cinnamon, and some sweet caramel malt. Not much Belgian character - Stone's yeast strain seems pretty mild in the phenol department.

T - The taste has more brown sugar and caramel malt flavor, with less of the chile and cinnamon I noticed in the aroma. Some unexpected citrus notes, perhaps from the yeast? Odd bitterness in the finish, not sure if it's from the chiles or some residual hops.

M - Smooth texture, medium-full body, well-hidden alcohol. Lower carbonation, and some chile heat the grows over time.

D - I'm not convinced the Belgian yeast and the chiles work quite well together. Might have been more interested fresh, but I'd skip it at this point. A disappointment seeing how much I like chile beers.

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2013 02:55:31 | More by MasterSki
Photo of WVbeergeek
WVbeergeek

West Virginia

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

Showed up at my local last week, not as bad as I was thinking considering the cinnamon and Anaheim chilies additions. Not very pale, more of a deep russet ruby like color going on with tan head forming thick, body slightly clouded with minimal yeast suspension floating. Head forms nice full intricate layered lacing levels. Really nice beer poured into my Stone RIS chalice that has somehow survived almost ten years of beer drinking. The cap reads a malt advocate magazine quote..."Stone Brewing defines the American craft brewing spirit", I'll agree with this since they have been one of the early trendsetters and continue to release things that break trends like their West Coast mild. I'm amazed that the Anaheim chilies don't flame me out either in my nares or the palate. Aroma has a great spectrum of fruit layers (apple/raisins) heavily ripened with natural sugars, like an earthy dubbel glazed with cinnamon spice and a full peppery finish. The first sip provides a wave of juicy caramelized malts and ripened fruit (prunes/dates/cherry)...with some spicy/hatch chilie pepper/spicy cinnamon stick ground bitterness in the finish. Not much heat as I mention spicy it really is well blended and doesn't kill the palate. A bit of astringency creeps in as a nutty/earthiness possibly from the yeast or the pepper seeds that really sets the smooth malt ride off it's path of glory. Complex interesting ale with sturdy smooth creamy carbonation and medium bodied ale with enough texture and dry finish to make it approachable with each sip. Overall Stone continues to make a more balanced chilie beer than I've tasted thus far, that's comparing a handful of experiences from Left Hand, Wynkoop, Rogue, Crazy Ed, and Great divide.

Serving type: bottle

12-07-2011 19:13:01 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of russpowell
russpowell

Oklahoma

3.88/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ours crimson with 3 fingers of tan head. Great head retention with nice lacing

S: Orchard fruit, some pineapple

T: Green apples, dark candi sugar, a touch of cinnamon & grapefruit up front. Figgy notes as this warms, plus grapefruit & pineapple, dryness, a kiss of caramel as well, pepper spicyness sneaks into the party as well. Finishes with a grapefruitty hop flourish, a kiss of pineapple & just a smidge of green apple skin& some ancho chile spice & green banana that all blend together fairly well

MF: Medium bodied, creamy fairly nice balance

MF: Medium bodied, slick, good balance

Nice Americanized take on the style with twists. It says to wait until 12/12 to drink this. My doomsday calendar dictates otherwise:P

Perhaps if I come across another bottle I will save up. I think it's drinking fairly well as it is

Serving type: bottle

12-21-2011 04:10:33 | More by russpowell
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

3.88/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

At the time of this review, this is the #5 top Chile Beer on the beeradvocate.com best of style lists. Served from a 22 ounce bottle into a Vertical Epic glass because I am one sick badass. I pity you, just so you know.

Beer is light brown, light a burnt amber, clear, big bubble carbonation, thin head, low retention, no lacing. Looks OK.

Aroma is mostly sweet mildly, semi-spicy, mild pepper flavor.

Beer is medium in body, really sweet, interesting like a dubbel with a chili chilli chile flavor to the back ground. It finishes nicely and tastes really good. I would and will have it again next year.

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2011 03:44:21 | More by drabmuh
Photo of SocalKicks
SocalKicks

California

3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

12-15-2012 03:20:15 | More by SocalKicks
Photo of Slatetank
Slatetank

Pennsylvania

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

I picked this up at Mt Rose Quick 6, enjoyed from a Duvel tulip chilled.

The color is deep bronze with light haze and thick medium tan cap with nice lace ringing the glass. Crimson when held to the light and bead is small. Smell is peppery with a chili pepper earthy scent and slight hint of chocolate malt with light cinnamon woody odor with light toasted grain accent. The feel is very good with dry bready and slight spicy blend with a hint of warmth from the peppers. The mild bitterness works with gentle carbonation that gives a creamy texture along with the mild oily element from the chilies. There is a toasty tinge in the body with semi-dry spiced finish but moderately low alcohol impact in general.

The flavor has a dry toasted malt taste followed by a spice flavor from the chilies with a light nutty woody cinnamon coming in last. There is a nice supporting hop flavor which adds to the peppery and woody notes. The chilies give a mild heat and vegetal taste to the buds with subtle yeast coming in low in the flavor threshold. I like the malt which supports well, but never really comes forward in the taste, just dry and toasty. The date like sweet accent is ther in the back with earthiness and mild alcohol beginning to become more evident in the last sips. The warmth is there near the end of the glass with tinge of fruitiness from the chilies and yeast brings out more spice in the fairly dry final taste.

Overall I really liked this compared to what I expected it to taste like. A good beer that would go well with a meal possibly a roast. I like the chili which is not that strong but does add a little heat which is pleasant. The subtle spicing is enough to makes this a very drinkable beer to me and I feel it is a well made brew. I enjoyed the chance to try this.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2012 15:08:17 | More by Slatetank
Photo of jlindros
jlindros

Massachusetts

3.95/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice creamy big head fades semi slowly with nice lacing, clear but small sediment ruby reddish brown color.

Nose light booze and esters, reddish malts, quite malty, sweet candy and caramel, toffee, lots of sweetness, hint of a chili and cinnamon like spice, and a definite pepper.

Taste a light pepper comes out first, light heat with chili pepper, sweet malts, lots of reddish malts, caramel, candy syrup, fairly sweet which balances the light spice well. Light cinnamon in there as well. Light esters and fruit with a hint of booze. Later towards the finish is a slight earthy herbal like hop kick with some light bitterness. Finishes with a bit more light heat and touch spicy pepper flavor, touch of heat on the back of the throat, quite sticky and bit sweet, more caramel and light cinnamon all linger.

Mouth is a bit heavier bodied, lower but decent enough carb, bit syrupy.

Overall very interesting, they hit the heat level almost right with maybe just a touch more of a kick would make it perfect, not a huge pepper bomb, and nice sweet balance with touch of hops. Lots of interesting flavors, and fairly drinkable. The only qualms I have are that its a bit syrupy and a bit light on carb.

Serving type: bottle

11-22-2011 12:53:52 | More by jlindros
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium

Pennsylvania

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

First had: on tap at Teresa's, Wayne, PA

Served in a stem glass, a dark walnut brown, clear, but so dark as to almost seem opaque; capped with a small layer of wispy, off-white head. Aroma of roasty malts, bready yeast, and only a hint of peppers, that seemed more sweet than hot. I didn't really get any cinnamon in the aroma. Malty taste and very woody, nutty, with subtle cinnamon notes; mid-palate, the taste from the peppers finally revealed itself, but it was very tame, contributing much more flavor than actual heat, blending well with the other flavors, and making this beer overall more robust and less sweet. Biscuity finish with an earthy quality. Medium mouthfeel, and quite enjoyable.

Serving type: on-tap

12-19-2011 01:08:40 | More by Rifugium
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

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

On tap at Square Burger in McKinney.

The beer pours a clear amber color with a large white head. The aroma has quite a bit of caramel and toffee, as well as a lot of green peppers and some assorted spices such as nutmeg.

The flavor is has a lot of cinnamon, peppers, toffee and Belgian yeast. All of the spices and peppers surprisingly work well together and make the beer enjoyable. There is also a touch of alcohol, but not as much as I expected.

Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Serving type: on-tap

03-10-2012 21:35:59 | More by Mora2000
Photo of StonedTrippin
StonedTrippin

Colorado

3.95/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

odd brew here. holy. pours a dark copper red color with a nice head. smells like india, cinnamon stick and sweet caramel malts. flavor is sweet and spicy like a roasted pablano pepper. has a new flavor, peppery and spicy, but subtle and pleasant. leaves a lasting mellow heat in the roof of the mouth, maybe too long after. stood up well with the most (epic) hickory plum wood roast apple smoked 48 hour marinated sea salt brown suggar ceyenne dryrubbed organic pork tenderloin with a dijon maple reduction over fresh nutmeg creamed mashed potatoes and a whack of balsamic cranberry molassas compote... yooo

Serving type: bottle

01-21-2012 06:20:24 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of zestar
zestar

California

3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

07-19-2014 06:08:51 | More by zestar
Photo of oline73
oline73

Maryland

3.05/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a slightly cloudy amber that has an intense red hue. There is a half finger of creamy off white head that fades quickly to a ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Sweet malt smacks you in the face. There are some fruity grape and cherry notes along with mild Belgian spice. I think I'm also getting some caramel.

Taste: Initially this tastes like it is going to be a total malt bomb, full of cherry, grape, and Belgian spice. There is a bitterness that shows up and cuts the sweetness a bit. The finish is slightly bitter with some Belgian yeast spice and then the chili peppers show up.

Mouthfeel: The body is syrupy with lots of foamy carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: This beer just didn't come together for me. Many of the flavors seem to distract from each other. I'm not sure that I would want another, but we'll see what age does when I open up all the VE's I have at the end of the year.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2012 00:48:33 | More by oline73
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79

New York

3.68/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From 11/15/11 notes. Had on tap at Fireworks in Arlington, VA at their Stone steal the pint night event. Poured in a 10 oz. tulip.

a - Pours a dark amber color with two inches of off white head and moderate carbonation evident. Looks pretty good.

s - Smells of cinnamon, bready malts, nutmeg, Belgian yeast, spices, bananas, and cloves. Quite Belgian-ale like, with cinnamon at the forefront. Pretty nice, no chiles to be had here though.

t - Tastes of chili peppers, spices, cinnamon, bready malts, toasted malts, burnt malts, and light fruit. Peppers are definitely present in the taste and aftertaste. I didn't think it was bad at all, though a step down from the nose.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Doesn't feel like 9.4$ ABV, though a sipper due to the chili and spices in the aftertaste.

o - Overall an interesting beer. I didn't think it was bad at all, though a 10 oz. glass was enough for me, so couldn't see putting down a bomber of this. Nose is very Belgian ale like fused with cinnamon, while the taste has the chile peppers, so guess they got what they were going for. I'll pick one up for the vertical.

Serving type: on-tap

11-16-2011 18:35:01 | More by mdfb79
Photo of mactrail
mactrail

Washington

3.3/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Nice foam-up on an amber brew. Spices are flavorful but don't shout out what they are. Very sharp flavor with the tang of alcohol. Acidic fruit flavors on top of a rich maltiness. Very fragrant. After a few sips tastes slightly hot on the tongue; more like ginger than peppers to my palate. Ends with black pepper and pencil shavings and a long winey flavor. Aftertaste has quite a bitter, medicinal taste.

They seem to have struck a balance between assertiveness and intrigue. More thought-provoking than the typical Stone powerhouse beers.

Serving type: on-tap

12-06-2011 06:00:50 | More by mactrail
Photo of Gueuzedude
Gueuzedude

Arizona

3.38/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Sampled November 2011
A solid pour into my Lost Abbey Teku glass produces a three finger thick, pale amber tinged, tan colored head. The beer isa a dark, concentrated amber color that shows a brilliantly clear, cranberry tinged, amber hue when held up to the light. The beer smells of caramelized cotton candy, bubblegum, lots of clove and ample pear and apple like fruit notes. This is backed by some toasted, whole grain, a touch of sweet tea like character (but only just a touch) . The beer is a bit unbalanced towards bubblegum, fruitiness and clove notes from the Belgian yeast, though not so much so that this is bad. Hmm, there it is in the far finish, the green chile comes through with a distinct vegetal, green chile like note as well as a some spiciness that smells of green and pepper.

The beer tastes extremely sweet, but most of this is perceived sweetness due to huge fruit, bubblegum and clove flavors that plays such a big role in the flavor. I don’t notice any of the green chile in my first sip. This definitely tastes a bit like bubblegum flavored cotton candy and there is a huge, slightly tongue numbing, phenolic clove note in the finish. There is an apple cider note (slightly oxidized cider tasting, though this is not actually oxidized), perhaps a touch of caramelized pear. The phenolic character contributes some cured plastic like notes that can be a bit much when combined with the clove character. The malt contributes a sharp, sort of roasted, spicy toasted, whole grain character. The green-chile character from the nose is a lot more subtle in the flavor; there is perhaps a hint of pepper in the finish, but this could almost be attributable to the spiciness from the yeast character. The chile, during a sip, is more noticeable as an oral nasal note rather than a flavor. The texture is not overly heavy, but it is definitely has a certain chewiness to it.

This really is just a bit too unbalanced; somehow the yeast character runs rampant in this beer in a bit of a simplistic manner with its focus on bubblegum, clove, plastic and too expressive fruit character. There is a chance that this will mellow out a bit, so if you have the patience I would recommend that you let this beer sit for 6 months or perhaps better a year. If the green chile character was a bit more prominent in the flavor and the yeast character was toned down just a bit this would be quite a bit better.

Serving type: bottle

02-15-2012 03:28:43 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of Rochefort10nh
Rochefort10nh

New Hampshire

4/5  rDev +6.4%

11-25-2011 20:59:38 | More by Rochefort10nh
Photo of XmnwildX12
XmnwildX12

Minnesota

3.25/5  rDev -13.6%

12-13-2013 03:16:18 | More by XmnwildX12
Photo of smcolw
smcolw

Massachusetts

3.55/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Full off white head. This settles to single layer but it leaves some streaky lace. The color is deep, dark amber.

Rich caramel aroma with some cinnamon, all spice and cardamom. Belgian yeast Plenty of warming alcohol as well.

Spicy, almost peppery, with a strong kick of alcohol in the swallow. The body is on the thin side. The carbonation is also a little low. The flavor is of dark malts and orange zest. Good hop presence in the aftertaste.

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2011 01:22:32 | More by smcolw
Photo of Halcyondays
Halcyondays

California

4.15/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle, the last Vertical Epic release before the big day, the last one to have any aging on it,

A: Pours a deep amber to red with a full off-white head, with good retention and lace.

S: Clear chile nose, reminds me of fajitas.

T: Nice malt flavour, noticable cinnamon, but the chiles come in early and take over. They work well with the base beer and allow some fruitiness to come in at the finish.

M: Full-bodied, creamy, nice long aftertaste with a bit of heat. Not the hottest beer I've had for sure, capsaicin-wise.

O: Another quality Vertical Epic, I will certainly be interested in seeing how much heat is left when I open this exactly 13 months to the day today.

December 2012 Edit - Still has a lot of chiles in the nose. Much more subtle overall in it's flavour. Very soft and delicate. A nice drink, but I believe it was better fresh.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2011 05:30:58 | More by Halcyondays
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mendvicdog

Maryland

3.25/5  rDev -13.6%

10-14-2013 20:27:53 | More by mendvicdog
Photo of Gavage
Gavage

New Jersey

3.88/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours a dark amber color with a short wispy head.

Smell: spicy yeast, cinnamon, and some malt sweetness comes through to the nose.

Taste: nice malty brew with loads of cinammon, a bit of spicy peppers, black pepper spice, belgian yeast, a hint of chocolate, and a decent bitterness. Alcohol is mildly noticeable.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Lightly crsip throughout. Aftertaste is long lasting.

Overall: easy to drink, but slow sipping with the spiciness of it all. Should be nice in a year from now when it mellows a bit.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2011 21:59:28 | More by Gavage
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beernads

Florida

3/5  rDev -20.2%

05-18-2013 06:39:24 | More by beernads
Photo of kojevergas
kojevergas

Texas

2.42/5  rDev -35.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

1 pint 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a generic hefeweissbier glass in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are relatively high; Stone can disappoint but on average they tend to brew interesting beers.

A: Pours a four finger head of nice cream lacing, great thickness, and fantastic retention considering the relatively high ABV. Colour is a semitransparent copper.

Sm: Aroma is surprisingly yeasty, with a fair amount of floral notes, bittering hops, and spice - maybe even pumpkin. Aroma is moderate in strength.

T: The bittering hops and spice clash quite a bit, I have to say. I don't know that aging would resolve this issue. Lots of weird notes are in there, including misplaced spices and bad caramel. The balance is completely off and the build is pretty badly considered. At least the alcohol doesn't come through. This is the worst possible outcome given the style.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Entirely too thick, however. It sort of complements the flavours.

Dr: Hard to drink on account of its low quality and bad balance. I hope that aging resolves its issues, and that I'm just guilty of opening it too early. I wouldn't buy it again, but I guess I'd try it aged. It's certainly experimental, which I applaud, but this is unfortunately a failure.

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2011 07:40:27 | More by kojevergas
Stone 11.11.11 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 1,436 ratings.