1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Espresso Imperial Russian Stout - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Espresso Imperial Russian StoutEspresso Imperial Russian Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,553 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,553
Reviews: 352
rAvg: 4.34
pDev: 7.83%
Wants: 171
Gots: 415 | FT: 47
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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: WillCarrera on 04-17-2013)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Espresso Imperial Russian Stout Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,553 | Reviews: 352 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Goblinmunkey7
4.29/5  rDev -1.2%

Appearance: Pours straight black with slight hints of dark reds and browns at the edges when held to direct light. Head is a solid dark khaki with 3-fingers of creamy dense foam. Drops to a small thin cap with a solid collar. Big sheets of lacing.

Smell: Slightly burnt malts. Typical Stone IRS with a boatload of roasted coffee. Nicely aggressive without being too nuts. Worn leather, char, and a bit more smoke than the regular iteration. Nice building caramel sweetness in the back. Some bitter coffee grinds. Slightly sweet and almost creamy (like lactose), but not quite. Backing dark fruit with more and more coffee as it warms.

Taste: Soft powdered cocoa up front gets obliterated by coffee. Roasted malts and coffee beans. A rich caramel sweetness plays with some smoke and char. A hint of that Stone IRS anise in the back as it warms. Milk chocolate and bitter baker's chocolate. Some leather and alcohol heat. Black licorice too. Some bitterness from the abundance of roast and char. Warming produces a solid alcohol burn and taste on the back.

Mouthfeel: Silky and smooth, more so than the original iteration. Some gritty grain on the back. Medium pushing full body. Carbonation is moderate and keeps things moving. A touch of drying alcohol on the back of everything.

Overall: I never thought they could make IRS better. They did.

A crazy amount of coffee, but it works with the large nature of the beer. One of the most aggressive takes on the coffee stout I've ever encountered, but the base plus the addition is fantastic.

Goblinmunkey7, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of mallen413
5/5  rDev +15.2%

mallen413, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of ShogoKawada
4.31/5  rDev -0.7%

had this last night.

Pours like the regular RIS, this one has 3 fingers of head. Sticky icky lacing, which I was not expecting.

Nose is coffee out the wazoo. Really nice, not too charred. sweet cream as well.

Taste follows. The coffee is front-and-center. A bit bitter and ever so slightly acrid in the finish. I feel that they could have cleaned up the finish a bit. A bit harsh.

This is lush and full bodied. Carb. is superb. 60% mouthswish.

I don't review that often anymore but thought I'd throw one up for this as I really dig this beer. A bit more aggressive than Founders Breakfast Stout, a bit stronger coffee flavor kick, not as smooth but really tasty stuff.

Worth a spin. For your health!

ShogoKawada, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of HopFace
4.5/5  rDev +3.7%

HopFace, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of randylangford
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

randylangford, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of bootdown21
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%

bootdown21, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of Joey1566
4.5/5  rDev +3.7%

Joey1566, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of PlinyBeMiney
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%

PlinyBeMiney, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of buck1futter
4.61/5  rDev +6.2%

A- typical stone RIS, motor oil, mocha head, very little ruby on the bottom of a tulip glass

S-chocolate, roasted malt, vanilla, lovely roasted coffee beans.

T-Nice creamy coco, a little bitterness as it is pretty darn fresh, So much coffee in this, This might be the most coffee in a beer ive had, it's pretty close to the coco flavors along the lines of a plead the fifth, caramel, hint of vanilla, licorice. alc. is hidden well.

M-creamy, thick to medium body, goes down really well for 11%, actually makes my mouth water as well.

O- Another impressive brew by stone, coffee stouts being my 2nd fav. style this one for only around 6 bucks a bomber has me sold. I have a bottle of speedway stout i will be comparing to this beer. I think i might like speedway maybe a little better but stone being have the price, i would probably pick this up 3/4 before i got the speedway.

buck1futter, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of MarioM
4.15/5  rDev -4.4%

22 oz Bomber poured into a Stone RIS snifter.

A: Black as a dark roast shot of espresso with a dark brown head that lingered for less than a minute and doc updated leaving almost none to little lacing.

S: A lot if nutty coffee roasty notes that compliment the dark roasted malts really well. Slight hints of dark sugars an dark frilly it's but mainly dominated by the roasty coffee aromas, which I love, Yum!

T: A lot of roasted malt with some aftertaste of coffee and chocolate. Bitter comes through embed irately and is almost too mutch until you take another sip and the nuttiness from the roastiness and coffee flavors kinda balance things out.

M: Full bodies RIS fo sho but almost too bitter in the middle and continues till the end. Bitterness lingers for a while along with the roasty bitterness from the rich coffee/espresso character that makes this such a special beer.

O: A great special odd year release by them boys over at Stone with them awesome xgardens and multiple page beer menue. Will have this brew again and will continue to evangelate friends with this espresso delicacy.

MarioM, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of cxr1037
4.4/5  rDev +1.4%

22oz bottle from BevMo.

appearance - typical of imperial stouts - dark black with thin espresso head.

smell - not too unlike other coffee/espresso stouts i've had before. lots of espresso up front. dark chocolate.

taste - not a big surprise here, but in a good way: bitter dark chocolate, espresso, a lingering bitterness. these three dominate, especially as the beer warms up.

mouthfeel - bitterness coats the mouth. low, but nice carbonation.

overall - quite fond of this espresso imperial russian stout. i haven't really desired a stout in a while, but this was a good return to the style. if i could add anything, i think some smokiness might add a unique dimension to this brew.

cxr1037, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of mychalg9
4.5/5  rDev +3.7%

mychalg9, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of coreyfmcdonald
3.9/5  rDev -10.1%

22oz bottle into a snifter, fresh from recent release

A: Pours pitch black with two and a half fingers of dense dark tan foam. Great retention and lacing.

S: Strong coffee and roasted malts aroma - bitter and slightly acrid. Caramel is in the background, fairly strong, but not overly sweet. A touch of dark chocolate is also there.

T: Again, coffee is quite strong in this beer. Now, there is a supporting caramel, dark chocolate, and milk chocolate base to back up the coffee. On the bitter side, but quite balanced. Good, but fairly straight-forward.

M: On the thick side with low, creamy carbonation.

O: A straight-forward coffee imperial stout. The flavors go well together, but I was hoping to taste more of the complexities from the base beer. Either way, a well above average imperial stout.

coreyfmcdonald, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of ThickNStout
4.28/5  rDev -1.4%

22oz bottle from Sprayberry Bottle Shop (Marietta, GA). 7.49. Recent 2013 release. Served in a Sweetwater snifter.

Pours jet black with a thin cap of tan head. Very little in the way of lacing.

Smells of coffee, bakers cocoa, burnt sugar and leather. Opens up as it warms with the coffee still dominant.

Bold bitter espresso hits the tongue first and is at the forefront throughout. Also dark chocolate, roasty malts, sharply bittering piney hops, burnt caramel, licorice, trace smoke and a good dose of alcohol. A very nice blend.

Creamy, moderately full body with subtle but present carbonation. Long bitter dark chocolate, booze soaked coffee roast bean finish.

For my tastes this is much better than Stone's standard RIS. The coffee adds a tasty counterpoint to an already well made imperial stout. I hope to find more of this soon.

ThickNStout, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of warnerry
4.5/5  rDev +3.7%

warnerry, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of VelvetExtract
4.21/5  rDev -3%

A-Pours about a pretty as a RIS can pour. No light penetration. The body rolls out of the bottle with a nearly sappy consistency. The head is a tall, compact assortment of millions of tiny, burnt tan bubbles. Impeccable retention and an endless dowry of lacing.

S-The nose is sweet and broodingly roasty. Blatantly has a 'dark chocolate covered espresso bean' nose. The roast combines with the sweetness to near perfection. Agitating the glass (swirling) really brings those espresso notes out. A bit smoky too. The nose is a bit less intense than expected but its very addictive.

T-The flavor is spot on but it doesn't have that overwhelming, palate-shocking intensity I was expecting. All that bitter, dark chocolate is there. The beans really shine in the finish. The two dominant flavors of coffee and chocolate leave little else to speak of. Its a very nice one-two punch...but its just a couple ticks below the intensity I was expecting.

M-Great feel. Creamy and just viscous enough. Very pleasing to leave on the tongue for several moments and swish it around. High roast-imparted bitterness. Mild heat after each sip.

O/D-Its right there with the original Stone IRS. Hell, its about 50 times better than Belgo-Anise IRS. I like the addition of the espresso here. However, I think the original is a bit more brazen, which I enjoy. Pretty good altogether. Will most likely buy another to sit on for a year or so.

VelvetExtract, Apr 19, 2013
Photo of TrickkyGangsta
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

TrickkyGangsta, Apr 18, 2013
Photo of miadw3
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

miadw3, Apr 18, 2013
Photo of sofisdad
4.5/5  rDev +3.7%

sofisdad, Apr 18, 2013
Photo of Obsidian
5/5  rDev +15.2%

Obsidian, Apr 18, 2013
Photo of wvsabbath
4.4/5  rDev +1.4%

Serving Type - 22 oz Bottle

Appearance - Black as night with a 1/2 creamy head, nice lacing.

Smell - Dark roasty malts, coffee, expresso, dark fruits like raisin and plum. Nutty, Smokey, licorice and chocolate.

Taste - The classic stone ris, malty, with added coffee beans, gives this a bold and Smokey flavor. The thick coffee flavor works really well with the hops to really balance out the bitter and fruity flavors. Plenty of chocolate and brown sugar/molasses note to sweeten up the brew some. Has a nutty and smokey flavor also that adds to the overall coffee flavor.

Mouthfeel - Strong malts and coffee coats the tongue , then moves to the palate and bitters it from the coffee and hops. Chocolate and smoke are a main aftertaste.

Overall - A really pleasurable version of stones ris. The added coffee beans gives it a nice boost. This will be compared to speedway stout but isn't the same beer at all. Nice balance, the alcohol is present but not overpowering. Cant wait to age a few bottles and drink years later. Awesome beer, a must try.

wvsabbath, Apr 18, 2013
Photo of xgeneralzodx
4.5/5  rDev +3.7%

xgeneralzodx, Apr 17, 2013
Photo of Herky21
5/5  rDev +15.2%

Herky21, Apr 17, 2013
Photo of darkmoon66
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

darkmoon66, Apr 17, 2013
Photo of Grant35
4.75/5  rDev +9.4%

Grant35, Apr 17, 2013
Espresso Imperial Russian Stout from Stone Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 2,553 ratings.