Southampton Imperial Russian Stout - Southampton Publick House

Not Rated.
Southampton Imperial Russian StoutSouthampton Imperial Russian Stout

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315 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 315
Reviews: 157
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 10.93%
Wants: 398
Gots: 94 | FT: 9
Brewed by:
Southampton Publick House visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-08-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 315 | Reviews: 157 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Overlord
4.65/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a gorgeous dark brown black with a cascading dark brown head. Surprisingly long lasting foam. Nicely carbonated.

Smells enticing, with sweet chocolate/cocoa, coffee, and roasted malt. THe flavor adds more complexity, with lingering vanilla, an awesome hoppy/burnt bitter aftertaste that isn't too overpowering, and some truly stunning roasted malt, chocolate, and espresso backgrounds.

Mouthfeel is nice and thick. I wouldn't say the alcohol is well hidden, but it's very drinkable none the less.

Now one of my faves. Thanks for the trade!

Photo of dfhhead25
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of nickd717
4.38/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008 bottle via trade thanks to badbeer. I met the brewer from Southampton, Phil Markowski, at GABF recently, and I've been impressed with everything I've tried from them so far. This was no exception. Copied from notes again after earlier rating was deleted.

A - Pours jet black and fairly thick with a small tan head and good lacing.

S - Aroma is roast, coffee, licorice, and some dark fruit. Smells very good.

T - Flavor is roasted malt, coffee, chocolate, and a little anise. Very good and well-balanced, if not too intense. A little on the less sweet side for an imperial stout.

M - Silky smooth on the palate with medium full body and a little alcohol warmth.

D - Pretty drinkable for an imperial stout.

Photo of Crosling
3.3/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I tasted this in a blind tasting last Sunday and it came out # 10, out of 19 different Imperials. I noticed my score was fairly low considering the norm, so that, on top of the fact that I didn’t take notes at the blind tasting, Pdee and I cracked a bomber tonight and shared it. Perfect appearence for an Imperial, inky black, with a huge, creamy and fat head, which appears muddy brown in color. The aroma is fairly subtle, with coffee bean and mocha hints, a slight note of chocolate and sharp, resinous aroma hops. Flavors begin with sharp anise notes, which lead into light grape and vanilla flavors, followed by a slightly chocolatey and coffee malt finish. Yet it remains flooded with aroma and flavor hops, particularly on the finish, which delivers a bitter and citrusy finish, and completely manhandles the assumingly great malt finish. At first the mouthfeel was a bit fizzy but it tamed and settled and eventually ended up being quite nice. I usually love Southampton, but definately not this one.

8 Month old bottle: The agressive, crude hoppiness of the initial batch has tamed substancially, both in the aroma and the flavor, yielding a balanced hop character right now, whereas the original batch was way over the top. Opaque black color, with a full, light brown head. After the aroma hops subside, a rich malitiness overwhems the senses, with a coffee ground, fudge character, with hints of charred fruits. Still hints of hops in the aroma, albeit light. Flavor has improved in a shocking manner, revealing the magic that the agressive hop rate concealed. An array of gummy, charred fruits and chocolate blanket, while the finish leads into a lightly alcoholic and lightly bitter hop finish. This really had molded into a classy drink. I look forward to seeing further improvement, but, unfortunately, my original fresh bottle rating still stands. 8/4/9/4/17

Photo of DIM
4.65/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

This had a black body and came with a thin, short lived tan head.

Lots going on in the nose, tons of rich chocolate plus roasty coffee and a hint of berry. Nothing subtle here, just massively enticing big stout.

Tastes every but as good as it smells, one of the best stouts I've had. Wave after wave of chocolaty coffee with hints of berry and cherry before a lightly charred finish. This had gentle carbonation and a body with medium heft. Just outstanding overall, so glad this was on the board tonight.

Photo of 22Blue
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of seeswo
3.33/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours black with an exploding cocoa head. Seems over-carbonated, but the head actually looks really good, so I split the difference. The smell is pretty mild - charred, smoky malts, maybe some molasses. Nothing altogether that exciting, but not deficient. The taste is a charred, almost tobacco malt. Very rich, but dry and a bit bitter. Not boozy at all, but really dry, molasses, little sweetness. I don't think there is anything fundamentally wrong with the taste other than the malts seeming almost over-charred, but I don't really like it. The mouthfeel was creamy in a nice way, but way over-carbonated. Again, I split the difference. Overall, I really didn't like this beer very much, but I think that may be more personal taste than anything wrong with the beer. As such, I'll downgrade it overall to balance my opinion.

Photo of nrbw23
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of baybum
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of ktrillionaire
4.55/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

2010 vintage, which I believe came courtesy of rlmartin; either way, thanks to rlmartin for being awesome one way or another.

A - The brew pours a rich, deep coffee-brown and is topped with a solid inch of khaki froth, depositing slippery globs of foam upon the glass' wall as it is upended. The brew's look is perhaps more typical of FES, but is tidy and impressive all the same.

S - The nose is an excellent blend of bitter dark chocolate, charred and naked grain, leathery notes, hints of smoke, and a vaguely berry-ish fruity sweetness.

T - The taste delivers on the promise of the nose, and is charry, roasty, hoppy and just out-and-out big. Suggestions of burnt coffee, leather, wood, anise, cherry and dark fruit complement the prevalent heavily-roasted grain, dark chocolate and molasses notes. The hops are defintely still discernible, and contribute a spicy, earthy and herbal quality. Booze is not particularly notable. Smoke lingers on the finish.

M - The brew has a soft, creamy feel that is quite enhancing given the brutal nature of the overall package.

O - Drinking this alongside '09 KtG, '10 Darkness, JK Black Metal, CCB Bohr and Dirac, I can confidently say this is only a notch below world-class; it was better than nearly all the aforementioned, and only KtG easily bested it.

Photo of rye726
4.68/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Dark, oilish color with a silky espresso colored head. Nice lacing on the glass. Nose has big roasty malts, dark fruit, red wine, molasses, coffee, chocolate brownies, bitter hops, spicy alcohols and anise. Taste is equally complex. Bitter hops and molasses over bready malts, fudge, coffee, plums, cherries, anise, vanilla and subtle alcohol. Thick, creamy body has a delicate carbonation. Great stuff from Southampton.

Photo of mpayne5
4/5  rDev -5%

Photo of Wowcoolman
4.32/5  rDev +2.6%

Photo of CTJman
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of clvand0
4.7/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a very dark color with a medium head that falls slowly and leaves a little lacing on the glass. The aroma is all chocolate. Lots of malt business, but it's mostly chocolate. Smells great. The flavor is as expected - very malty, lots of flavor. Lots of chocolate and hints of coffee and alcohol along with a small hint of dark fruit. Very tasty. The body is thick and the drinkability is excellent for having the high alcohol. Great brew here.

Photo of Lehighace06
4/5  rDev -5%

Photo of aerozeppl
3.9/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to drseamus for the share. 2009 bottling. Bottle 293 of 450.

A: Jet black with a finger of coffee colored head. I was surprised at the amount of head on this beer. It was a nice looking beer with decent head retention which again is unusual for a RIS.

S: Little bit of chocolate. This was a really tight nose. I really did not get much else.

T:Chocolate and roast. Someone at our tasting described this by saying the beer displayed "a narrow band of flavors" and I think that really nailed it. Quite bitter in the finish. This was one of the most hop forward beers of this style I have had.

M: Very sharp carbonation. Very well carbonated.

D: Easy drinking but it was just missing something for me. I was really looking forward to this one and it was a bit of a let down.

Photo of CrellMoset
4.33/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle 260/650, 2011 vintage. Cracked at a friend's house and paired with some delicious vanilla bean ice cream.

Appearance: Pours a thick inky black, heavy, opulent, and decadent, capped by two fingers of dark, cocoa-hued head. This is a fierce looking brew, right up there with the fiercest, thickest, most badass RISs. This one has even more going for it than most, though - the retention is absolutely phenomenal, with the crown lasting for most of the session, leaving huge swaths of frothy, chunky lace dripping and drizzled up and down the sides of the tulip.

Aroma: Dry, toasty, and astringent, this one's all about the malt, and is definitely dryer in the nose than last year's version. Hints of dark fruits and macerated blueberries and raspberries mingle with a slight chalky twang, likely set free by the high attenuation. It's solid, if not groundbreaking.

Taste: When I first had the 2011 on draft, I was distinctly less impressed than I remember being when I first had the 2010. I'm a little more receptive to it now, though, but I'm unsure if that's the result of time to reflect or instead the serving type. Caramel, fudge, and toffee mingle with toast and bitter fudge for a huge and fat but also elegant dryness. Those same berries and dark fruits mingle expertly with the malt astringencies and a hint of booze, but those notes elevate this one rather than take away from it. A flavorful and complex tasting brew.

Mouthfeel: Even and silky, with a good amount of lift at first and for a while. Milkshake like creaminess at the end. On both ends its good, though the mouth amplifies different flavor components at different points.

Drinkability: As I said above, I was less of a fan of this year's batch the first time I had it, but enjoyed it much more out of the bottle than I did on tap. Maybe it's the carbonation level or some such, but this beer was exceptional as always. Not to be taken lightly at 10.2%, this one is to be sipped and savored. Glad I have seven more bottles I'm sitting on - I imagine this one is only going to improve with age, though there's only so much opportunity for this one to improve.

Photo of MinorThreat
3.5/5  rDev -16.9%

Photo of Rollzroyce21
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of HopStoopid120
4/5  rDev -5%

Photo of waddellc2
4.5/5  rDev +6.9%

Photo of bobv
4.25/5  rDev +1%

Photo of SpdKilz
4.43/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A big thanks to Shane for sharing this at a recent small tasting at sirotan’s up in Ann Arbor. 2010 vintage.

Appearance – Pours into my tulip with a dark black color and about a half finger of mocha colored head that dissipates slowly leaving some nice lacing.

Smell – Loads of bittersweet cocoa/chocolate and roasted malts. This is always a positive sign to me because it means the initial aromas are not too sweet...which personally is a bit off putting for a RIS. A hint of molasses and caramel, but again it is not the dominant aroma.

Taste – Char, roasted malts, and bittersweet chocolate up front. A very dry stout. Mixes in with just a hint of sweet molasses (and a touch of toffee).

Mouthfeel – Medium to full bodied, moderate carbonation, creamy, finishes dry.

Overall – A great RIS. Very glad I was able to try this due to a generous BA. Would seek out in the future.

Southampton Imperial Russian Stout from Southampton Publick House
93 out of 100 based on 315 ratings.