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

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BA SCORE
85
very good

1,480 Ratings
THE BROS
92
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,480
Reviews: 474
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 16.76%
Wants: 41
Gots: 437 | FT: 21
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
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Ratings: 1,480 | Reviews: 474 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JohneHoodlum
5/5  rDev +33%

Photo of n2pux
4/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of IHyphySF
3.45/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a goblet

A: Dark amber/light brown also light nice light foam that quickly dissipates.

S: Strong smell of the chiles but also has the smell of olive juice ready for a martini with a small hint of smoke.

T: You really can taste the peppers mixed with smoke while the aftertaste leaves a nice fruity but smoky/hoppy taste in the back of my mouth. The cinnamon really comes out towards the end and is quite pleasant.

M: Lightly carbonated makes it very creamy in the mouth and it goes down smooth.

O: Their seems to be just an imbalance because there are some things i like about this on how smooth it is for being 9.4% the taste is great when i taste the fruitful parts and the cinnamon afterwards. But the lasting smoke flavor is quite off putting while i am drinking it.

Photo of nickthegun12
4.08/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

wow...i do believe i like this beer!

the appearance is dark....more of a dark brown color

smell is dominated of cinnamon and cloves...very similar to egg-nog...lol

the taste is stunning! the spiciness hits first....maybe from the chiles or the yeast maybe the cinnamon....there isn't much of a back to the taste....very good

kind of a medium feel in the mouth not as creamy as i'd like to see

overall this beer is above average for a strong ale....i think the chiles and cinnamon did wonders for this ale!

Photo of Listers
2/5  rDev -46.8%

Photo of Hippopotamus
4/5  rDev +6.4%

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

Appearance: Dark copper color with one finger of head that fades slowly to a thin cap with little lacing.

Aroma: Well, you can definitely smell the chili's, but also a lot of toasted malt, candy sugar and cooked veggies. It reminds me somewhat of a winter seasonal.

Taste: Sweet, toasted malt with a creamy body, then right behind a distinct chili pepper taste with strong cinnamon notes and some distinct dry, Belgian yeast. The chili's stay prominent right through the finish, where they battle for taste superiority with some nutty maltyness.

The Rest: Very interesting. This would have been a very good Belgian ale on its own, but the chili's definitely take it in a whole new direction. We'll see how it tastes after hanging out in my basement for a year.

Photo of fatmcb1
4.03/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours an amber, dark brown color with an off white head that dissipates very quickly. Lacing is left on the glass.

I get banana and cinnamon up front. There is also a strong malt backbone and a bit of other dark fruit. I don't smell chilis.

This is a little bit of everything all rolled into one. Banana, dark fruit esters, and cinnamon come through first. This is much more balanced by hops than the smell indicated. Chilis do show up towards the end, but are never overpowering.

Carbonation is nice and creamy with a medium body.

Overall, I enjoyed this. I am not reviewing it as a Belgian Strong Pale Ale. This was really well crafted, and I'm excited to see what a year or so of aging does to the flavor. The chilis were a nice touch.

Photo of brokentee
4/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of marct
4/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of Chugs13
3.25/5  rDev -13.6%

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

Poured from a bottle into a large wine glass, the beer is a vibrant, ruby-hued amber coloring with a steady dose of carbonation bubbling and a thin film of beige head. Very clean looking brew. Light clinging to the glass, but nothing that holds for a great length of time. Aromas of slightly sour and bready yeast characteristics, light candied and toffee malt profile, and sweet greens. The beer's flavors are dark roasted initially, with a baked caramel sweetness and some earthy tones to balance. There is a slight spicing throughout, with some pepper and clove presence. Medium bodied, there are only the slightest hints of the chiles throughout, but they help to keep the beer clean. The aftertaste is more of the tangy malt and slightly sour yeast, with a cinnamon spicing at the very end. The finish is clean, and slinks away without much distraction from the beer itself. Very tasty brew!

Photo of Quaffenator
5/5  rDev +33%

Photo of chodinheaven
4.55/5  rDev +21%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Hazy deep ruby red in color with dark pink highlights. Topped by a nice off-white head that sticks around for a long time and leaves a bit of sticky lacing as it goes. The smell is really interesting as the first aroma I pick up is cinnamon. Some other hot spices follow, very much like a freshly picked chilie pepper. Its got the sweet heat that you get out of chilies, which is a very cool smell to pick up in a beer. Actually reminds me of the Carribean jerk flavor. Backed by a bit of clove and sweet booze, the aroma is well-rounded and strangely pleasant.

The Carribean jerk flavor really does come through in the taste too, but not as prevelantly as it was on the nose. Cinnamon and clove tastes work together to bring a sweet and spicy kind of character to this beer, backing the chilies. The chilie pepper taste is not hot so much as it brings another dimension to the spicy, Belgian style. It actually competes with the clove to gain top spot in the spice character of the beer, edging clove out by a bit in the end. A very light taste of banana even manages to fit its way in to the flavor profile in the lingering aftertaste. This aftertaste also has a touch of most of the other flavors in the beer, most prevelantly the chilies and cinnamon. A gritty mouthfeel and bone dry finish round out the flavors perfectly, complementing everything exactly how it should. The amazing thing about this beer is how unique and different the flavors are, combined with the fact that it remains completely balanced throughout the taste.

This is a fantastic and unique beer and one that I am so glad I got my hands on. It saddens me that I didn't know about this series until this year (the fact that I was 14 when the series started doesn't help). I would love to do a vertical of them in 2012, but alas, will probably not get that chance. I will definitely have to see if I can get my hands on another one of these to at least do a vertical of the last two. Worth the buy for sure.

Photo of Vonerichs
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear amber body with a thin head. Once the head is gone there's not even a trace around the edge.

Smells of banana, clove, and light herbal hops. The cinnamon is mild.

The primary taste is the phenolic bananas and cloves, a dash of cinnamon, and a green herbal hop bite. I wouldn't pick up the chiles if I didn't know they were in there. There's only a mild chile taste with no residual heat. Flavor is ok, but don't seem to mesh well.

Mouthfeel is undercarbonated, but medium bodied.

I just wasn't feeling this one. I'm a big fan of Stone, but this one disappointed me a little.

Photo of jsprain1
4.22/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- From appearance, I wouldn't call it a pale ale, but that'st just me. More of a red color with a one finger off white head that has just a thin slick of retention.
S- The aromas I'm picking up are much more prevalent on the cinnamon side than the chile side. The chiles are there but it's a minor undertone, rather than a big aroma, and I think that's proper. The Belgian yeast is noticable, but the aroma is first and foremost cinnamon.
T- More complex and varied on the tongue. The first thing I pick up is cinnamon again, but there is a light peach/pear flavor coming from the yeast strain. The chilis are noticable in the finish as just a slightly warming prickly sensation.
M- Medium light body. Carbonatin is low and a fairly long finish.
O- I can admit when I'm wrong. When they announced the nature of this year's Epic, I had low expectations. I was wrong. Is it my favorite beer or favorite from Stone? No. But it's a quality beer that finds balance in disparate ingrediants.

Photo of bbes347
3/5  rDev -20.2%

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

Pours a darkish amber color with a dense khaki colored head that settles into a light cap. Definitely does not look "pale".

The aroma has a sweet candi-sugar aroma. The yeast provide some clove like notes with some flowery perfume. The peppers provide a light vegetal aroma and there is a light hint of the cinnamon. Some metal notes as well.

The taste starts off with a sweet belgian base; candi sugar and clovey yeast, medicinal & perfumey. Some overripe fruit is coupled with a peppery flavor, both vegetal and spicy. Cinnamon come through towards the end. Some hoppy grassiness as well. Not sure if all of the flavors totally work together here. Not sure if it needs the cinnamon.

The feel is moderate with very fizzy carbonation. Zesty on the palate; sweet and spicy with light bitterness. A lot going on, probably too much.

A decent beer that tries to do too much. Needs to be scaled back a bit.

Photo of specksnreds
4.33/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Stone, you're a badass. I've had a few of these now, but my first impression after a sniff was a doubtful, "Dude, what temp did you ferment?" In other words - ester bomb. But as the beer warmed up, things started to come together (like a plan on the A-Team). When I say things, I mean the cinnamon. Very nice with the fruitiness of the yeast. Not too over the top, and it felt warm and festive as the beer came to room temp. It's brown and carbonated and bubbly and dark-fruity and pretty and boozy and a little thin and that's all made better...because it has cinnamon.

Photo of jlb502
4/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of nickhiller
5/5  rDev +33%

Photo of CSQ1111
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%

Photo of Popp24
4/5  rDev +6.4%

Photo of kojevergas
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.

Photo of harlanhu28
3.65/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle served in a Stone epic glass. Purchased at Total Wine in Tucson for 5.99.

Appearance deep amber good inch and half head that doesn't last long.

Smell a cross between Belgian saision and Belgian strong. Banana and very strong clove quite muddy on the smell and blends into spicy plum on the mid tongue.

The first taste has a tinge of alcohol on the tongue when it warms up in the mouth you have banana, clove, Belgian yeast and spicy plum many different levels of flavor spice and burn. On the end you have a slite hop and spice chili.

Mouthfeel is quite good it has weight and that part is they must have some flaked barley in this because it is very creamy.

Overall this is much better than last years it is way above the total failure of last years 10/10/10! It looks like Stone is getting their act together in designing new beers for the first time since the departure of their long time brewmaster!

Stone 11.11.11 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 1,480 ratings.