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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

1,466 Ratings
THE BROS
92
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,466
Reviews: 472
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 16.76%
Wants: 40
Gots: 431 | 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
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Stone 11.11.11 Vertical Epic Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,466 | Reviews: 472 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ikantspel
3.2/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

served into a duvel tulip

pours a deep mahogany with a subtle head. not too much lacing going on

smells kinda fruity with some yeast in there. a tad peppery is the only hint of chile you get

first it kinda hits with a malty flavor. you can get some cinnamon in the middle but nothing way too overpowering. finishes pretty bitter. pretty much a cycle of sweet, spice, bitter.

somehow this works. after a few more sips the chile comes out more. dont know if i would get it again seems like a novelty beer

ikantspel, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of Rhynes2
4.55/5  rDev +21%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I bought this brew today and it was the first beer I have ever had brewed with chilis. I was skeptical at first. On the nose its very wine like me and my buddy said it was almost like a Cabernet Sauvignon with some spice. The taste is caramel malts at first and it quickly fades to the chills. they are strong but well balanced. I'm so impressed with this brew and will be buying it again soon. Stone never lets me down

Rhynes2, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of mithrascruor
4.25/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle poured into a chalice.

Appearance: Pours a clear, darker amber color, but is ruby through the light. Minimal filmy off-white head and very little visible carbonation.

Smell: Good malt aroma with some fruit-like sweetness, and a hint of yeast. I think I can get a slight whiff of the peppers.

Taste: Pleasant malt flavor (carramel) up front, which gradually gives way to some cinnamon and mild yeast flavors towards the finish. There's a bit of bitterness in the aftertaste. It takes a few sips for the chilies to register, but they add a nice, additional dimension to the taste, and gives it a mildly spicy aftertaste as well.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied and quite smooth; very mild carbonation.

Drinkability: Strong ABV but little to no alcohol present in the taste.

I quite enjoyed this one - the yeast was quite mild, and the chilies were a nice touch.

mithrascruor, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of SawDog505
4.03/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into 20 oz Duvel tulip glass. Pours a wonderful ruby red, with a 3 inch off white head, not much lacing. Different color than I would have expected. Smell in banana, clove, coriander, a little spice from the peppers, and some carmel. Not a huge Belgian fan, but this is really nice. Taste has much more spice, than the smell would lead on. I feel like the nose and taste really match, except the burst of spice in the finish. Makes it seem a little hoppy. I like hot foods, so it doesn't bother me. The booze hides well. Body is on the larger side, but not giant. Good amount of life and approachable for it's abv. This is very interesting, so much tastier than 10/10/10, but just as unique. I expected very little because it isn't my favorite style, it delivered.

SawDog505, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of DeanMoriarty
4.38/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a fairly clean dark amber, slightly cherry hue with a good fluffy tan head that dissipates quickly leaving good amounts of lacing.

S: Sweet bready yeast, banana esters and grainy malt - very Belgian smelling, cinnamon sticks, light hop and just a hint of chile and booze.

T: Ah there's the chile - though detectable in the nose, I was hoping for more of a showcase in the flavor and I was not let down. Sweet toasted malt, the banana is there too, midway the booze is detectable but not at all offensive, then the chile lays on thick, balanced perfectly with a more earthy than spicy cinnamon (not at all what I expected when I read this one had cinnamon added) - very subtle and earthy and really compliments the chile well. These guys know what they're doing!

M: On the bigger side of medium-bodied, the carbonation is light and lends perfectly to the style and creaminess of this brew. Someone complained about an oily quality in the mouthfeel, and I agree on the lingering oiliness - which is from the chile, but I really like this aspect. Stone often accomplishes this with oiliness from the hop, but here they've achieved this quality with oil from the chiles added - super bomb!

Overall far from a session beer, but I don't think that was Stone's intention by any means, but as a quality sipper to enjoy from time to time, this one is up there with some of the best.

DeanMoriarty, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of seeswo
3.5/5  rDev -6.9%

seeswo, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of Beefytits4
3/5  rDev -20.2%

Beefytits4, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of KickInTheChalice
3.1/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Served on tap at Fish Bar in a mason jar.

Appearance: The beer has a medium brown color with amber and ruby edges. Quite a large eggshell head sits on top when the beer comes out. I suspect this may have been an overly aggressive pour. The head retains fairly well and leaves a bit of lace down the glass.

Smell: The aroma is kind of strange. I notice cinnamon first, with toasted bread, banana esters, and a fair amount of booze. From the aroma I don't even get a hint of chiles.

Taste: The flavor starts with slightly sweet toasted grains tinged with a bit of caramel. Then it starts to go a bit crazy. Cinnamon is really the dominating flavor here, but it somehow does not mix with the other spices. Cloves and banana notes clash with the malt and cinnamon flavors, and I only get a light sense of the chiles at the end, after the beer has turned into a medicinal ethyl alcohol bomb. I wonder if some time (like a year, a month, and a day?) would heal the distracted flavor.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is the real victim of the brewing process. After seemingly half a sip, my tongue feels covered in some immutable oily coating that is fairly unpleasant. Like most other Stone beers, it is properly carbonated and has a heftiness to the body, which I appreciate. Just a very soft burn in the back of my throat from the chile.

Overall: This is the second beer from Stone I have had recently that has stunned me with how bad it is. I will continue to try everything they make, but I won't be coming back to this beer anytime soon. Overall this is just too much of a disjointed mess.

KickInTheChalice, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of MikeytotheB
4/5  rDev +6.4%

MikeytotheB, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of ShogoKawada
2.4/5  rDev -36.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

22oz into Deschutes pint glass.

A- Nice orangey amber on the pour, a sandy tan, almost eggnog head builds and leaves some rather nice lacing on the glass. Foam is dense.

S- The yeast in this one is crazy. Lots of bubblegum, bananas, and all around spicy yeast goodness. You get a nice whiff of the cinnamon and the faintest hint of the peppers.

T- Eh, Wow. I taste the banana-y yeast, it jumps out from the start. The cinnamon is muted, and the chiles provide a mild green note. Alcohol is very present... Spices intermingle, but not really to the benefit of anything. The spicy and the sweet flavors do not mesh, my tongue is confused.

M- What is that? I don't think it's the chile. Cinnamon? Something's leaving a weird feeling in my mouth. OK, the chile shows up in the end too, with a bit of heat. It's got to be the alcohol? I think this one's a bit too boozy for its own good.

O- Did not finish- not even my first glass. Really unappealing flavors. Sorry, Greg, I thought I was going to seriously groove on this one, but it's a head-scratcher.

ShogoKawada, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of fmccormi
4/5  rDev +6.4%

fmccormi, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of micstache
2/5  rDev -46.8%

micstache, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of ej285701
4/5  rDev +6.4%

ej285701, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of khumbard
4/5  rDev +6.4%

khumbard, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of barleywinefiend
3.9/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured an amber color color with good carbonation and a nice white cap

S: Chili upfront with candy, cinnamon and allspice following

T: Cinnamon, allspice, Belgian yeast, a hint at candy, a little booze sting. The chile is light and only appears at the end

M: Medium body, well carbonated

O: Good for the style

barleywinefiend, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of karlfree
4/5  rDev +6.4%

karlfree, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of CenCalMario
4/5  rDev +6.4%

CenCalMario, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of AlexM
4/5  rDev +6.4%

AlexM, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of yesferro
4.05/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap on 11.12.11 at Flying Saucer in Cordova TN

Poured with barely any head, might have been the way the taps were set up, other then the nitro brews I didn't see any beers with a head on them leaving the bar. Dark red/brown in color.
Smells spicy sweet, not overwhelming but very good.
First sip was awesome, banana and peppers, with a nice burn at the end. I really didn't get any hints of cinnamon at all but the pepper came through nicely. Sadly, I took my time with this brew and about halfway through the glass it became a drag, as it warms up, it loses the heat and becomes too yeasty sweet for me.

We hope to find a bottle of this to age, the store we stopped at was already sold out, I think this beer will age nicely, it's already nicely balanced but I'd love to see what happens when the peppers mellow out.

yesferro, Nov 13, 2011
Photo of Eriktheipaman
3.05/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a brownish Belgian cooler.

The smell was the worst part of the beer. ALL I could pick up was a kind of green bell pepper smell which was a little off putting.

The taste was a little better. I didn't pick up any cinnamon but a good amount of pepper (no heat just flavor), slight spice, and some banana from the yeast.

This beer paired pretty damn well with the eggplant and potato pizzas I had with it so I will give it credit for having amazing pairing potential. But on it's own it didn't hit the spot for me. Maybe a year or two on it so the flavors can blend but I'm not sure I'll give it a second chance.

Eriktheipaman, Nov 13, 2011
Photo of cbutova
3.99/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Red ale poured into a pint glass. Small foamy white head forms but doesn't have great retention. Fine ring stays alive and some spots of lace form on the glass.

S- Unique aroma with a smoky, spicy, earthy cinnamon and hot pepper feel. Definitely a bit of caramelized sugar. Some Belgian spice and dark fruit.

T- Belgian yeast becomes way too strong here and gives off a medicinal dark fruit and spice feel. The peppers and cinnamon are very nice, earthy and flavorful.

MF- Creamy moderately thick body with nice smooth carbonation. Not all that spicy and somewhat warm and bitter.

Hard to drink a ton of this due to the extreme strong flavors. The Belgian yeast really hurts this one because the peppers are fresh and nicely done. Will re-review in another 1yr1mo1day.

UPDATE: 02/02/2013.

T- Chili pepper stands out nicely still, really like fresh cut vegetables. Herbal, spicy, dark fruit, cinnamon and some clove banana.

Scored: 3.75, 4, 4, 4, 4

cbutova, Nov 13, 2011
Photo of Halcyondays
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.

Halcyondays, Nov 13, 2011
Photo of match1112
3.8/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a clear reddish brown with a four finger head that leaves ring after ring of big clumpy lacing in it's wake. nose is made up of cinnamon, chilies, yeast, some banannas, bread and malts. taste is pretty much the same as the nose. this beer has a lot going on. mouthfeel is that of a full bodied beer with a creamy texture and great carbonation. overall this is very busy and i'm more a fan of the k.i.s.s. method. worth the try and will probably throw one in the cellar to try again down the road.

match1112, Nov 13, 2011
Photo of ocelot2500
4.43/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a maple syrup color with a tight, off-white head that leaves a ring of lacing.

Smells of roasted chiles, banana, and yeast spice.

Tastes of Belgian fruit notes and spice with the chiles running throughout. Banana with some sweetness comes through first along with a bit of apple. Chiles come in next and add a bit of meatiness and nice roasted notes. Spice comes on the end with clove and cinnamon notes combining with a small amount of heat from the chiles. As it warms, a bit of a phenolic character comes through.

Mouthfeel is medium-full with a smooth amount of carbonation.

Overall, I really like this beer, and feel that the base beer would most likely be good on its own, but the chiles make it even better. However, I should qualify this with the fact that I like to add roasted green chiles to almost everything I cook, so it may only appeal to those like me.

ocelot2500, Nov 13, 2011
Photo of perrymarcus
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle served in a snifter.
drinking on 11.12.11... so close.

pours a coppery, deep amber tone with ruby highlights while yielding a relatively short lived finger and a half beige head. the head leaves a little to be desired but still a beautiful looking beer.

nice, aromatic nose offers clear notes of cinnamon and chiles along with a strong belgian yeast presence. secondary notes of banana and clove.

flavor is interesting. my first impulse is that i don't think it's for me, but after a few sips i seem to warm up to it more. more or less follows the aroma: chilies, cinnamon, banana, Belgian yeast... definitely a lot going on. a bit medicinal. medium-bodied on the palate with average carbonation.

overall i think it's a unique and relatively tasty beer. not out-of-this-world delicious but a nice change of pace.

perrymarcus, Nov 13, 2011
Stone 11.11.11 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 1,466 ratings.