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!

Raven's Eye Imperial Stout - Eel River Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Raven's Eye Imperial StoutRaven's Eye Imperial Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

274 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 274
Reviews: 181
rAvg: 3.74
pDev: 12.83%
Wants: 10
Gots: 15 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Eel River Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: beerguy101 on 08-12-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 274 | Reviews: 181 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Tabni:
Photo of Tabni


5/5  rDev +33.7%

12-14-2011 15:29:18 | More by Tabni
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon

North Carolina

4.13/5  rDev +10.4%

Pours close to an opaque black except for just ahint of ruby at the bottem of the impy pint glass,a thinner mocha colored head atop.Deep raisin and espresso roast coffee in the nose with some molasses in there as well.Full on dark fruit and alcohol sweetness hits the taste buds up front the sweet alcohol is tasty but dangerous,dark roast coffee has a hefty presence as well with a light drying earthiness in the finish.A very nice impy stout and I think Eal River is organic right?

06-18-2008 21:55:13 | More by oberon
Photo of tbryan5


3.75/5  rDev +0.3%

09-11-2013 12:53:35 | More by tbryan5
Photo of DontTreadOnMike


2.88/5  rDev -23%

Very dark, almost black, with reddish tones. Quite foamy if you’re not careful. Large cream colored head.

Very sweet. Caramel and chocolate maltiness. Not very strong aroma but I can tell this is going to be big. Very malty, no hops detected at all.

Velvet silkiness. Very smooth and thick but not sticky. No bite at all; I don’t know if that’s good or bad in most people’s eyes but for a thick Imperial Stout, that’s just the way I like it.

My first impressions went like this:
“Hmm. This is kind of boring. I’ll hold it in my mouth for a while to see what I can detect…….not a whole lot is changing.”

After I swallow….

“Wow! Excellent coffee after taste! Very good finish!”

After a few more sips my impressions mellowed out again. It’s not very complex. Apart from the surprise ending, there isn’t much to this brew at all. It’s very malty and that’s good but it didn’t change much. It’s not very strong, there’s almost no hint of alcohol or hop flavors; it’s just…sweet.

Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t a BAD beer. Not at all. In fact I’ll probably buy it again. It’s very drinkable, especially for an Imperial Stout. But that’s sort of the problem, I could gulp this thing down if I wanted to. When I buy an IMPERIAL Stout I want it to make me wince a little bit. I want to have to sip it slowly and think about the way the complex flavors are changing in my mouth. This beer looks, smells, and feels excellent. But the flavor is just a little boring for an Imperial Stout. Like I said, I’ll definitely buy this again but it’s not going in my list of favorites.

08-27-2009 13:15:47 | More by DontTreadOnMike
Photo of Jayman931


4.03/5  rDev +7.8%

Bottle served in a snifter

Dark dark brown with a head that dissappeared quickly

Smells of vanilla and caramel...mild though

Taste is great...chocolate with a very mild malt caramel ending

Nice lingering..not super thick for an imperial...overall very nice

Definitely will buy it again..6 bucks for a bomber is a great deal


08-29-2012 03:46:25 | More by Jayman931
Photo of bishopdc0


3.73/5  rDev -0.3%

Pours a dark brown and becomes a black color with a a big head. The head dissipates and leaves a full coverage.

The aroma is nice, full of coffee and sweet cocoa. It is well blended with slight roasted notes very nice.

The taste start with a sweetness of malt to begin. The next flavors are fruity and hints of chocolate, almost like a chocolate covered cherry or raspberry. The chocolate taste come in at the end and leaves a slight velvet feel in the tongue.

(My wife said this is a raisin beer)

For a 9.5% there is no telling watch out as this goes down easy. Esp being that it doesn't really feel like or have the body of a RIS

03-31-2011 00:52:39 | More by bishopdc0
Photo of mikechance


4/5  rDev +7%

Tasting from a 22 oz bottle on 11/30/12

A ---- deep mahogany black, little to no head, and thick

S --- black licorice, malt, vanilla, sweetness

T --- chocolate, brown sugar, cherry, vanilla, and woodiness

M --- full bodied, nice carbonation, creamy

O --- I like it a lot!

12-01-2012 03:28:09 | More by mikechance
Photo of megamass

New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -6.4%

06-07-2013 04:46:34 | More by megamass
Photo of Billolick

New York

4.33/5  rDev +15.8%

22 ouncer, w/o vintage/freshness/bottling data, c'mon guys doesn't this style deserve some sort of consumer info? Anyway, this one pours dark dark mahogany, very dark tan head, tightly knit showing better then average retention, and moderate scattered lace. Rich burnt malty, chocolaty, raisin nose. Full flavor RIS, lots of chocolate, black coffee, figs, raisins, gooey brownies. Yummy stuff, nice cold weather sipper, or would be great with a rich dessert or perhaps with some robust BBQ. Perhaps a bit thin in the mouth feel to qualify as a world class offering, but this one did not disappoint. Stout lovers, go get some and enjoy.

11-16-2008 15:23:42 | More by Billolick
Photo of magictrokini


2.73/5  rDev -27%

Infinitely dissatisfied with this one. Poured clear black with red edges. I say clear because you could see through it to some degree. Minimal lacing, short, bubbly tan head. Flat, musty caramel and malt aroma, some coffee, and thin cocoa powder. Taste was watery and weak. Some coffee and chocolate materialized as the beer got very warm, but before that, this was a grainy, soupy, earthy malt beverage. A bit astringent at the end. Imperial Stout? I think not.

01-28-2009 19:13:26 | More by magictrokini
Photo of YenomG

4/5  rDev +7%

11-05-2012 02:56:20 | More by YenomG
Photo of DonGuido


3.75/5  rDev +0.3%

06-23-2014 23:11:08 | More by DonGuido
Photo of far333


3.63/5  rDev -2.9%

Black with purple highlights and a head of light brown foam that rises to a full inch and slowly recedes down to a fine cap.

Aroma of raisin and port, some molasses.

Vinous flavor, some cherry tang, molasses and brown sugar. Moves to coffee and cocoa. Subtle notes of alcohol. Seems to be missing a roasty character.

Thin mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Average drinkability, needs some complexity and backbone.

10-19-2009 04:05:58 | More by far333
Photo of williamjbauer

West Virginia

3.75/5  rDev +0.3%

05-22-2013 12:11:49 | More by williamjbauer
Photo of rastaman

United Kingdom (England)

3.75/5  rDev +0.3%

Tap@Eel River. Rich and sweet, with some welcomed acidity and bitterness, oily, licoricy, roasted, long finish, good stuff. Not a style i generally mark low anyway, so most of the time its gonna get an OK score, but this was a middle of the road imperial stout, tasty stuff.

02-22-2005 19:27:35 | More by rastaman
Photo of Ecliptica


3.9/5  rDev +4.3%

This seemed pretty exotic. An imperial stout I've never heard of from a brewery I've never heard of. Worth a shot, right?

Poured the beer from the 22 oz. bottle (pretty bottle, too; big picture of a raven on an orange background) into a pint glass. The brew poured an almost opaque black with ruby tints when held up to the light. Only a small head on the initial pour (though the refill gave me a nice, frothy tan head) with moderate lacing.

I guess I missed out on all the smelling fun because the only smell I could discern was tannin. It smelled heavily of alcohol - almost wine-like - with a faint, faint hint of roasted malts in the background. The alcohol smell was overpowering though; my buddy and I both had this at the same time and the smell just overtook the entire room.

It tasted how it smelled - the alcohol taste was more upfront than any other brew I've had in a while. Once it warmed, the flavors became more prevalent (and quite good!) and chocolate, roasted malt, and roasted coffee become discernible.

Mouthfeel was a bit thinner than expected considering the thick pour, but overall not bad. Though there was a prevalent alcohol smell and taste, there was little bitterness in the mouthfeel which made it nice and drinkable.

Thus the drinkability factor remains fairly high. I understand it's a 22 oz. bottle and it's 9.5% alcohol, but I could probably drink a couple of these in an evening (and wouldn't doubt I'd be drunk after three of them). It goes down super smooth and I think this is one of the few beers that, as it warms, it tastes 100x better than fresh out of the bottle cold. Recommended.

05-03-2008 07:45:25 | More by Ecliptica
Photo of Reappropriated


3.5/5  rDev -6.4%

01-17-2014 21:14:09 | More by Reappropriated
Photo of IntriqKen


4.43/5  rDev +18.4%

Pours a typical pitch black with a half finger dark tan head that melts very quickly to a ring of sticky tan lacing.
Aroma is a mild coffee and chocolate mix.
Mouthfeel is creamy, thick and rich.
Taste is again a typical IS espresso and dark bitter chocolate with a nice malt sweetness balancing the bitterness of espresso coffee and bittersweet chocolate.
Aftertaste is mostly the bittersweet chocolate with a nice alcohol warming.
Not a spectacular Imperial Stout, but not bad by any means.
This one is very balanced with no surprises and no disappointments.
An excellent 'go to' Imperial Stout if it is available to you.
Thanks to beautiful kolohoe for this bottle (and another to cellar..woo hoo!)

04-15-2007 04:55:32 | More by IntriqKen
Photo of NJpadreFan

New Jersey

4.38/5  rDev +17.1%

Eel River- Raven's Eye

A- Deep murcky brown almost black with a thick creamy head.
S- Light chocolate dusted sweet coffee beans.
T- A big scoop of sweet vanilla bean ice cream and smooth milk chocolate dropped into a medium roast cup of light and sweet coffee.
M- Creamy and sweet, big flavors and a smooth finish.

Overall- A mighty tasty beverage! 9.5% abv but hidden well. A solid bomber that I'm glad made its way to the East Coast!

05-03-2008 23:08:41 | More by NJpadreFan
Photo of Heffastera


3.5/5  rDev -6.4%

07-26-2014 05:45:19 | More by Heffastera
Photo of LovenHoppiness


3/5  rDev -19.8%

04-28-2014 00:15:47 | More by LovenHoppiness
Photo of Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.95/5  rDev +5.6%

Black with big bubbly white head. alty aroma. A bit prickly carbonation. Nitro,and very drinkable is the interesting highlight. Baker's chocolate, chocolate malt, some burnt caramel. Did not get significant coffee.Alcohol, and roast is there but not overt.

07-18-2008 03:31:29 | More by Sammy
Photo of cjgator3


3.15/5  rDev -15.8%

22oz bottle

A- Pours a dark brownish black color with a nice light tan colored head with good retention and lacing.

S- The aroma is roasted malts and cocoa. I like the aroma, it is just a little tame for the style. Wish it was a little more pronounced.

T- The taste is dark roasted malts, a lot of cocoa and some coffee flavors as well with a noticeable warmth from the alcohol.

M- The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

D- Overall, not a bad Imperial Stout but it just isn't up with the elite beers within the style. Worth a try, but I don't think I would buy again.

05-12-2010 04:44:56 | More by cjgator3
Photo of Rob23


4.03/5  rDev +7.8%

I have passed this one up so many times I thought what the hell and bought it.Pours black as my kids moms soul.I dont smell much...maybe some plum and cocoa.First sip is a bit boozy but gives way to the cocoa and othe signiture stout flavors.It seems to have that pop rocks dissolve on the tongue effect that I tend to like.For 7 bucks it aint bad and I would definatly revisit this one if I could not find a Ten Fidy or a Stone in stock...not bad at all.

07-06-2014 02:20:03 | More by Rob23
Photo of russpowell


3.9/5  rDev +4.3%

Pours black as motor oil that hasn't been changed in 3 years, with a pinky of mocha head. Good lacing & head retention

S: Some chocolate & iron & roasted malt

T: Baker's chocolate, coffee grounds, iron & husky grains up front. Dryness, roasted malt, a touch of vanilla & dark fruit as this warms. Finishes dry with much coffee grinds, a touch of vanilla & oaky dryness

MF: Pretty smooth, low carbonation, Slight chewyness a bit of booze

Drinks pretty easy for the style, the ABV slows you down a bit. A solid RIS

03-25-2008 07:16:20 | More by russpowell
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Raven's Eye Imperial Stout from Eel River Brewing Co.
84 out of 100 based on 274 ratings.