Espresso Imperial Russian Stout - Stone Brewing Co.

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Espresso Imperial Russian StoutEspresso Imperial Russian Stout

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BA SCORE
96
world-class

2,683 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,683
Reviews: 361
rAvg: 4.34
pDev: 7.83%
Wants: 209
Gots: 412 | FT: 42
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: WillCarrera on 04-17-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,683 | Reviews: 361
Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.2/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottled 3/14/13.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy super dark khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. A foamy lattice of lace coats the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, alcohol, and earthy espresso aromas. Taste is much the same with bittersweet chocolate and espresso flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of roasty bitterness and an alcohol kick on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer with some rich aromas and flavors and a boozy presence that begs to be sipped slowly.

Photo of metter98
4.31/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is jet black in color it poured with a quarter finger high dark tan head that quickly died down, leaving thick wispy lacing on the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of coffee beans and licorice are present in the nose.
T: The taste has flavors of espresso and a moderate amount of bitterness along with notes of dark roasted malts and hints of licorice.
M: It feels a bit more than medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This in an intense coffee-flavored beer that seems to taste more like espresso with beer added to it. The alcohol is very well hidden from the taste.

Note: 2013 "Odd Year" Release

Photo of brentk56
4.15/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: A rather thin mocha head sits atop the pitch black liquid, even after a somewhat hard pour; not much staying power, though there a more than a few dots of lace left behind on the chalice

Smell: I was expecting more coffee but this is really fruity, with prunes and dates interspersed with chocolate and coffee tones

Taste: Fruitier, too, on the palate than what I was expecting, with prune and date flavors forward pushing into the bitterness brought from the hops (it is a Stone, of course) and coffee; underneath, chocolate and coffee underpin the flavor profile with a bit of lactose softening the finish

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with moderate carbonation and some warmth in the gullet

Overall: Quite different from what I was expecting and the bitter hop flavors were a bit of a distraction for me; good, but there are other coffee stouts I prefer more

Photo of BEERchitect
4.45/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Do Stouts get any more manly? Insane espresso additions pile onto an already aggressive roasty blend of burnt barley, cocoa, alcohol, and firm maltiness for an ale that will make the most manly of men become afraid of the dark.

Voluptuous in its pour and jet black in its hue, the creamy thick stout is viscous, inky in its legging and it releases a coffe-stained topping of foam adorns the apex and laces with well defined rings at each sip.

Malty rich aromas of burnt molasses, deep roast espresso and cocoa, all come together in a cocolate covered espresso bean kind of way.

The beer simply reaches a new depth of roast as its flavors share the malty sweet molasses and toffee but, then with the quick celebraton of espresso, cocoa, roasted walnut flavors that control the taste at middle palate. All that deep dark roasted coffee, chocolate, and nutty taste develops a decidedly bitter finish with rummy alcohols and a stern roasted malt firmness.

Its lush and creamy textures are robust and full at first. But the beer makes a quick turn to acrid roast and spicy astringency in the middle which carries into its bitter and drying finish. Excessively dry on the palate, its near powdery roast texture holds onto a slim savory chocolaty, semi-dry finish that lingers indefinately- making it the ultimate after dinner delight.

Stone's Espresso Imperial Russian Stout is the benchmark of coffee souts. With ultimate coffee roast and supportive malt sweetness, it's amazing how effortless the beer seems for such intense individual flavors, but how complex and rounded it becomes the more you explore the nuances beneath the roast.

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.02/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

a very unique beverage, worthy of all the high praise for sure, but somewhat of a stranger for an imperial stout, and in many ways more of a quad than a stout. its dark a dreamy for sure, sudsy and fading tan head less than an inch on the top, but deep brown to black in color, with just the faintest red glow along the perimeter of my globe glass when i hold it to a florescent bulb. the nose is surprisingly yeasty, and yeah, this has a bit of age on it thanks to careful cellaring by drlovemd87, but it hasnt lost a step. almost belgian yeast, with all the incumbent fruit esters on the nose, a shot of lazily pulled, slightly bitter espresso, counteracted by sweet chocolate malt and an warming alcohol presence. the taste is similar, oddly quad-like, with more raisin and molasses character than dark bitter malt and coffee, although this is indeed coffee driven. no bitterness, no acid, just warming booze, interesting leftover candy style sugar, berry espresso, and a creaminess of the feel that is sensational. do i reckon this is one of the top 250 in the world? probably not to be honest, but its a well made beer that brings something a little different to the table for the style, and in a coffee stout polluter beer-scape, this leaves a notable impression. smooth and heavy in feel, it has just the right vibe. worth a try because its weird, aging like a quad and all. give it time, malt comes to play. well hidden 11% abv too...

Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a nice medium size dark brown foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma consists of espresso notes with nice dry floral notes and no astringency. Taste is also dominated by espresso notes with no astringency and dry roasted malt notes also noticeable. Black chocolate notes are also very enjoyable. Body is quite full with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Body is about average for style with good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Very enjoyable coffee stout from a brewer that rarely disappoint.

Photo of oberon
3.99/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours jet black with no light getting thru this puppy,a half finger beige colored head atop.I f you like roasted aromas than you'll love this,the espresso roast along with big earthy/roasted notes,mild molasses-like sweetness and bitter chocolate round out the nose.Big earthy and roasted coffee flavors really hit ya on the palae with only a meager amount of sweetness,even the alcohol sweetness for such a big beer is rather subdued.A little prickly in the feel,I gotta say I like just the "standard" Stone RIS better although this isn't bad or anything.

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.35/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pick-up at Trader f'ing Joe's for $5.49! 22oz bomber

A: Pours black with brownish/redish highlights under a 3/8-inch mocha head with good retention and leaves thin rings and spots.

N: Cocoa powder, vanilla, roast coffee/espresso, faint molasses, berries and citrus.

T: Fresh espresso coffee, some charred wood, toffee, slightly boozy bourbon notes, dark chocolate, figs, dried citrus fruit and toasted coconut.

M: Full body and medium carbonation. Creamy and rich with some oily slickness. Very mellow and not too bitter.

O: Big and terrific. Well done. Amazing price.

Photo of TMoney2591
4.15/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Served in a Local Option cervoise.

Man, Mr. Koch sure knows how to get me to buy a bottle... Anyway, this stuff pours a straight obsidian topped by a finger of khaki foam. The nose comprises rich coffee, toasted pretzel, and a general sense of roastiness. The taste brings in more of the same, with the coffee a touch milder, allowing the roast to really shine through. Everybody plays nicely with everybody else. The body is a stolid medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a smooth feel. Overall, a damn fine version of the already tasty IRS. I hope to see this often in the future...

Photo of jlindros
4.52/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've been excited to try this for a while now, and finally got around to it.

Pours a nice dark creamy frothy thick 1 finger mocha colored head that fades semi slowly, a nice lacing, pitch black beer with not light coming through, kinda reminds me of the kaffee I got in Belgium.

Nose is great, just as expected, lots of dark malts, a little roast, with hints of dark chocolate and super dark intense cocoa. then loads of coffee and espresso, fresh roasted ground coffee beans, super pact espresso rich nutty like, a nice roast without being super acrid either. It also brings a light smoked malt character which is also interesting, and a light nutty caramel aroma somewhere under that, and even a faint vanilla character. So much fresh coffee and espresso roast!

Taste starts with loads of dark malts as expected, big creamy dark chocolate, so much chocolate, dark cocoa, a little thick milk chocolate, nice melting Belgian chocolate, a little vanilla and some nice caramel as well. Roasted malts are there but barely, but they lead teh way for the big coffee flavor, and fresh espresso beans, freshly ground and somewhat freshly roasted coffee, and a nice rich coffee flavor. It doesn't get acrid, at all, which is really interesting for how much fresh roasted espresso is in this, I can almost feel the caffeine seeping into my tongue. There is also a hint of warming booze, but not much, and with the mild sweetness and huge roasty coffee and dark chocolate, drinks like the abv is closer to 7%. Besides a mild bitterness from teh roasted coffee, there is also a light earthy hop presence, but barely. Finish is drier but a little sticky as it really coats the mouth, with more earthy bitterness, long fresh roasted espresso beans lingering for a long time, and a bit more dark chocolate.

Mouth is full bodied, nice and creamy, thick and somewhat lush, just a touch of booze.

Overall lives up to the hype, this beer is awesome! It's no Vietnamese Speedway, but it's not too far off. No flaws in this beer, everything in the right proportions, very tasty, and way too drinkable!

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.24/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Now this is an odd year release that I can live with.

Nice smooth coffee tones on this that stay consistent and mesh well with the standard stout of things. The feel on this is so smooth. Unbelievably smooth. Carbonation is minimal and fairly mild, with just a slight nibble on the tongue. Seems appropriate for the style. Very easy to drink. A very nice beer.

Photo of russpowell
4.39/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours mahogany with 2 fingers of caramel. Viscious, some lacing & head retention

S: Coffee, some chocolate, a little vanilla & boozeyness

T: Chocolate, mocha, dryness & coffee, some peppery spicyness up front. A touch of anise & boozeyness as this warms, then some more chocolate, some minty hops, some charcoal & oakyness, plus a whisper of caramel. Finishes oaky, slightly boozey, with caramel & coffee, plus mocha

MF: Chewy, subtle carbonation, some slickness, very warming

I like this more than the standard version, the complexity works for me. Another great offering from Stone!

Photo of kojevergas
3.5/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2013 Odd Year Release. 11% ABV confirmed. "Ale Brewed With Espresso." 1 pint 6 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard branded pressure cap acquired at a local SoCal beer store for $4.99 and served into a Mitchells of Lancaster flared stem-tulip in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are above average; I was pretty underwhelmed by Stone's regular Imperial Russian Stout but I'm hoping the espresso will add interesting character. I'm a big fan of the style.

Served chilled and allowed to come to room temperature over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a two finger nice dark tan colour head of decent cream, lacking thickness for the style (it's disappointingly thin), and pretty good (~4-5 minute) retention. Body colour is a solid dark black; nontransparent. Nontranslucent. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Light uneven inconsistent lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

Sm: Delightful espresso notes - smooth, soft, and appealing - with no traces of bitterness. Light roast. Some milky notes. Dark malts. Chocolate malt. Cocoa. No yeast character, hop character, or alcohol is detectable. I'd like more roast, but the espresso is a highlight. Quite inviting. A mild to moderate strength aroma.

T:/Mf Espresso up front fades but stays through to the third act. It's a bit too smooth, but I like it. Rustic coffee notes merged with milky character; I like that. Dark malts form the foundation, with some chocolate malt and cocoa coming through. No yeast character, hop character, or alcohol comes through. Smooth milk chocolate. I'd like a lot more roast, but it does have a bit. Some caramel. It's a bit lacking in terms of complexity, but I'm a big fan of the espresso notes. Balanced and enjoyable. I like it in spite of its simplicity. It does severely lack subtlety, though. And the style demands more roast, but it's likable.

Good smoothness, with a soft consistency. Nicely creamy. Good carbonation, if slightly overdone. Wet. Unrefreshing - but the style doesn't call for that. Good thickness. Pretty good presence on the palate. suits the flavour pretty well, but not necessarily the style.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable for the style. Hides its ABV pretty well, but there's still some noticeable alcohol. This is definitely one of Stone's better offerings. I'd get it again; it's well priced at $5 a bomber. It's not fantastic for the style, and it relies on its espresso notes as a crutch, but in this case it works. Surprisingly good considering the brewery.

High B-

Photo of MasterSki
4.1/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Bottle from Whole Foods. Shared this with the lovely ladies at Debonair Social Club. Served in a fine plastic cup.

A - Creamy mocha foam settles to a thin cap, thick collar, and splotchy lacework. Very dark brown with some mild transparency at the fringes.

S - Iced coffee dominates, with modest amounts of baker's chocolate, raisins, dark fruits, a dollop of caramel, and perhaps a hint of anise. Still, very much an espresso-forward beer.

T - The taste is similarly coffee-heavy; it's a bit rough and diner-esque. More roasty, dark, an licorice-heavy than the aroma, but still a sweeter American-style stout on the whole. More of the base beer comes out as this warms, with notes of biscuit and caramel and less coffee as this reaches room temperature.

M - Surprisingly zesty carbonation. Tannic and gritty texture, medium body that becomes a bit creamier as the beer warms up. Some mild warming alcohol.

D - I drank the majority of the bomber as the ladies just weren't feeling coffee beer. Got a bit fatiguing near the end, but still largely enjoyable. Much better than the 'Belgian Anus' version of the IRS.

Photo of mdfb79
4.29/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

From 0427/13 notes. Big thanks to nmann08 for sharing a bottle of this guy; thanks Nate. I love the normal version so have really wanted to try this one. 22 oz. bottle, 2012 vintage.

a - Pours a dark black color with two inches of light tan head and moderate carbonation evident. Looks like a great stout, like the normal version.

s - Smells of chocolate, roasted malts, vanilla, coffee and toasted malts. Some light dark fruits as well. Not a ton of coffee, and reminds me very closely of the original version, but that is a good thing. Well balanced.

t - Tastes of bitter chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, milk chocolate, vanilla, alcohol, toasted and burnt malts.

m - Medium to full body and low to moderate carbonation. Very easy to drink for 11% ABV. Awesome mouthfeel and body.

o - Overall this is a very good RIS, though not a big improvement on the normal version. A tiny bit more coffee but that is about it. Well worth seeking out if you are a fan of their normal IRS and/or coffee stouts (as I am for both), but not a mind blowing improvment.

Photo of superspak
4.3/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle into snifter, just release in April 2013. Pours dense pitch black color with a small dense tan head with great retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Some light spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass. Aromas of huge dark chocolate, roasted espresso, roasted malt, cocoa, toast, light char, floral, light vanilla, and roasted earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good balance and complexity of dark malt notes with the espresso; and some lightly noticeable hops. Taste of big dark chocolate, roasted espresso, roasted malt, cocoa, light char, toast, floral, light vanilla, and roasted earthiness. Fair amount of earthy coffee bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark chocolate, roasted espresso, roasted malt, cocoa, light char, toast, light vanilla, and roasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Fantastic balance and complexity of roasted flavors with big espresso; with a good hop bitterness balance and no cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and very full bodied; with a very creamy and slick mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a fantastic imperial coffee stout as expected. Big balance and complexity of roasted malt flavors with espresso; and quite smooth to sip on. A highly enjoyable offering.

Photo of dbrauneis
4.37/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served on-tap at Lord Hobo in Cambridge, MA

Note: 2013 Vintage

A: Pours an opaque jet black in color with moderate amounts of visible carbonation and some very dark amber + cola brown highlights. The beer has a two finger tall dense foamy dark tan head that slowly reduces to a very thin film covering the majority of the surface of the beer and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate to strong aromas of espresso, dark roasted malts, and bittersweet chocolate. Very light notes of burnt malts.

T: Moderate to strong flavors of dark roasted malts and bittersweet chocolate upfront with stronger flavors of espresso. There are lighter notes of milk chocolate and vanilla. Very light hints of burnt malts all of which contribute a moderate amount of lingering bitterness to this beer.

M: Full bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Creamy.

O: Very enjoyable with really intense espresso flavors and aromas - I'm a huge fan of the coffee brews and this one is great. I bet this beer will just get better with age as well.

Photo of mothman
4.23/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Tan head. Black in color. Lots of lace.

Dark chocolate, raisins, molasses, caramel, and roasted malts. Huge coffee and espresso tastes throughout the beer and in the finish. Lots of roast. Vanilla.

Mouthfeel: roasted and dry. Smooth still. Full bodied. Good carbonation.

Overall, a really solid imperial stout. The coffee is right where it needs to be. Right amount of roast. Well done stone.

Photo of stakem
3.94/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bomber into a matching Stone standard pint glass. The brew pours black in color with a finger of khaki head that fades to a thin film leaving a wall of patchy lace sticking to the glass.

The aroma includes plenty of coffee character with a backing of roasted grain typical of the base brew. Notes of bitter baker's cocoa mingle with a hint of mineral character and earthen aspects. A tinge of alcohol and fruity hops wrap things up in the aroma department.

The flavor is bitter and roasted. Fresh coffee, mineral and earthen aspects give way to bitter chocolate just like the aroma suggested. The 11% abv is present with a fruity accent and a bit of solvent burn across the back of the throat. More sips reveal an increased bitterness not just from the coffee/roasted grain but also from the presence of some hops.

This is a medium to fuller bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. I gotta admit that I am a big fan of the standard stone IRS and everything about this brew seemed like a win. I was surprised to see a slight bump in alcohol level over the base brew, I expected it to be lower with the coffee edition. I think the alcohol is a little too forward and some aging might do that aspect good but if I had more of this, I would not hesitate in drinking it for fear that the coffee would fade leaving you with just a lightly different standard Stone IRS. Regardless, this is good stuff, get it while you can.

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.29/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

The beer is opaque, sporting a black body and a half inch of dark beige head. Oily residue clings to the walls of the oversized snifter. The aroma brings dark roast, chocolate, coffee beans. Big coffee presence in the flavor. Chocolate covered espresso beans. Some delicate heat and alcohol warmth in the finish. Less heat than in the standard version. Perhaps the grand coffee presence negates some of the usual brash heat. Medium to full bodied with some prickly carbonation. Overall, really solid.

Photo of Halcyondays
4.54/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bomber,

A: Pours black with a medium tan head, excellent lace, creamy look.

S: Lots of upfront coffee with vanilla and dark malt. Straightforward coffee stout smell, but done well.

T: Sweet brown sugar and creamed coffee with a lot of dark chocolate. Less coffee than in the smell, this really has a taste of a one year old regular IRS fresh which is really cool.

M: Very smooth and creamy - velvety. Dangerously drinkable for its size.

O: This is a great bottle of beer and better fresh than regular IRS. Sub $6 a bomber for a beer like this is a steal.

Photo of Stinkypuss
4.22/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Stone Brewing Co. : Espresso Russian Imperial Stout

LOOK: Dark brown with an off white head.

SMELL: Premium roast coffee, woodsy, earthy notes. Smokey, coffee like, a bit of vanilla but more than likely due to malt sweetness.

TASTE: The flavor is reminiscent of a spiked vanilla coffee, but there are malty flavors that irk the imperial notion. In other words, this is a big bad roasted stout. Chocolate, coffee, booze, and some well hidden but present citrusy hop character. Coffee bean and big time malt.

FEEL: Medium to full bodied, smooth, well carbonated. In the finish it has coffee and sweetness, tempered by a solid bitterness.

OVERALL: Solid beer, good flavor, and a literal staggering strength. For the price it don't get much better. Great stuff.

Photo of corby112
4.58/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours pitch black and completely opaque with a two finger dark beige head that very slowly settles into a thick, lasting ring. Impressive retention for the style and high ABV with streaks of soapy lacing left behind.

Robust, deeply roasted dark malt aroma with subtle hops and a very strong coffee/espresso character. The dark malt and coffee notes are countered by a sweet, silky chocolate presence. Gourmet roasted espresso bean complimented by dark chocolate,oatmeal and toast. This is followed by a faint resinous hop character, bakers chocolate and cacao.

Full bodied with a huge espresso/robust coffee flavor that adds another dimension to the complexity of the base beer. Delicious roasted, slightly nutty, gourmet coffee flavor perfectly compliments the malt profile and subtle hop bitterness of the regular IRS. Robust and bitter but never becomes overwhelmingly dry or acrid. Lots of espresso flavor up front along with burnt toast, oatmeal, dark chocolate and subtle smoke. There's some resinous hop bitterness mid-palate with some grass and pine needle followed by sweet, desert-like silky chocolate notes. Hints of fudge, German chocolate cake, cacao and subtle lactose toward the back end. Although this is a huge, complex beer, the high ABV is pretty much undetectable, making it deceptively drinkable. This is the kind of beer you want to slowly sip on and savor, but I love the flavor so much that I can't help myself from downing the bomber very quickly. Possibly the best tasting coffee beer that I've ever had.

Photo of Alieniloquium
4.23/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

650 mL bottle poured into an Allagash chalice.

Appearance - Inky black. Nice mocha head. Surprising lacing and great retention. Leaves a thick mocha collar as it settles.

Smell - Coffee is surprisingly subdued. Rich chocolate. Nuts and caramel.

Taste - Chocolate is first, but coffee isn't far behind. It builds into the finish. Nutty malts. Caramel in the middle. Coffee builds into the finish, which has a nice coffee and malt sweetness.

Mouthfeel - Thick and chewy. Medium carbonation. Leaves me craving more with each sip.

Overall - This is quite good. I wish I had had a regular one in recent memory for comparison. The coffee is a subtle touch, not overpowering at all. The nuttiness is probably the strangest, but not necessarily unwelcome, component.

Photo of barleywinefiend
4.34/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a big, sluggish black color with good carbonation leaving a nice brown cap with loads of bubbles, some decent lacing and moderate head retention

S: Big roastiness, anise, espresso, light booze sting, dark chocolates pretty much sum this up

T: Immediate roastiness and dark chocolate with an underlying dark fruit presence, this beer transitions into a nice warming booze sting with espresso, more chocolate. Some bitterness, perhaps from the hops or black patent malts. piney and floral notes from the hops. The finish has a long, lingering roast, bitterness with espresso.

M: Full bodied, well carbonated, a light astringency, loads of flavor wallop the palate.

O: A pleasure.

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Espresso Imperial Russian Stout from Stone Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 2,683 ratings.