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Marshal Zhukov's Imperial Stout - Cigar City Brewing

Not Rated.
Marshal Zhukov's Imperial StoutMarshal Zhukov's Imperial Stout

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518 Reviews
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Reviews: 518
Hads: 2,450
Avg: 4.28
pDev: 21.26%
Wants: 1,190
Gots: 837 | FT: 80
Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing visit their website
Florida, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BigMcLargeHuge on 11-17-2008

This Russian Imperial Stout is dedicated to Georgy Zhukov, arguably one of the finest generals of World War II. Opaque black in color, with notes of espresso, chocolate, dark toffee and hints of backstrap molasses. The English hop varietals provide a subtle herbal dryness, and finishes with a hearty slap of roasty espresso. Pair Marshal Zhukov’s with Mushroom Solyanka, dark chocolate, cherries and ground wars in Russia.

We brew and release Zhukov's in the summer knowing that a beer of this heft reaches its full potential a few months after release. So save a bottle for the cold winter!

80 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 518 | Hads: 2,450
Photo of mindspin315
4.61/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is one sexy Russian Imperial Stout! Poured out a huge red hued brown head. Dark as dark can be. Lacing and legs for days.

Smells like rich fudge brownies, anise, dark chocolate cake, cocoa powder up front. Roasted grain and espresso grinds come through from the middle to the end. A light faint aroma of plum and wet pipe tobacco sits in the background. Very rich and creamy.

Big dark chocolate notes right away. Bittersweet chocolate comes in right after the rich dark chocolate flavor. Drinks like a thick chocolate milk. A touch of alcohol comes through on the tongue about midway through, but overall this is so masked you could never tell this 11%. Deep roasted grain sits on the palate in the finish along with dark roast coffee, espresso bitterness, and both sweet milk & dark chocolates. Creamy rich body, thick and sticky coating all over the mouth. So sticky its like glue.

This dominated my palate just like George Zhukov dominated in his military conquests. Not to many RIS can claim to be so full bodied and coating when compared to this one. Very impressed and will be seeking this one out again and again and again.


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Photo of Katahdin
4.61/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The first thing one notices is the deep dark pitch of black it pours. Almost heavy in apperance like molasses, which interestingly it has strong hints of. Has a beautiful rich, creamy head. The body is complex with subtle hints of molasses, chocolate, chicory, coffee and even dried fruits. Goes donw nice and smootgh, no fighting needed. Almsot wish it was not an 11% beer because would really enjoy several glasses of it ona cold winter's night.

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Photo of AndyAvalanche
4.61/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

1 pint 9.4 oz. bottle poured into a Duvel tulip style glass. The liquid portion comes out black like motor oil only it's not separated. As the liquid rises in the glass it consumes all light that it touches in the glass with absolutely zero highlights. There is a dark brown foaming head with large air pockets bubbling up to the top. It sort of looks like a melted hershey chocolate bar as the head at first. It sort of transcends its way separating itself from the liquid. By the end when it settles there's a frothy head with small and medium bubbles, excellent lacing. A truly amazing looking Russian Imperial Stout, if you were to drink this regularly you would be dissapointed the way other beers look.

Smell is pretty direct to the point. Nice malt bomb with lots of dark chocolate, but uniquly not too bitter, a little sweet. There are also some aromas of espresso or dark roasted coffee and hints of sweet licorice. Slight hints of some earthy, grassy hops. My main knock on the aroma is compared to everything else about this beer, it's not that strong, can't quite figure out why.

Taste makes up in power where the aromas lack. Huge amounts of dark and other various types of chocolate, both but I'd say slightly more sweet than bitter. A bit of dark coffee and some sweet licorice again. There's also some dark fruits like sweet candied figs and raisons and I swear I'm even picking up some subtle hints of toasted shaved coconut. Hop profile is much stronger here, almost like candy coated mild hops, mild sweet citrus and some pine. Probably should've said this earlier, but there seems to be some honey flavors too. Like in addition to all of the dark roasted malts there's a little bit of a pale caramel malt glazed with honey. To cap it off there's a very subtle smokey flavor, not overwhelming at all. This beer is loaded with flavor!

Mouthfeel is great, no doubt a full bodied pretty heavy beer, a nice long lingering flavor. Nice moderate carbonation level, small bubbles tickle your mouth most of the way through. Silky smooth with a nice bitter finish that isn't too try or too gritty. Nice flavorful beer that's excellent the whole way through. A crazy good sipper that's super decadent, but drinkable enough for any stout lover to enjoy on their own, but I'd recommend sharing, even though I'm being selfish right now and not!

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Photo of TheBeerologist
4.61/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a Jackie O's snifter

A: This poured thick and black like used motor oil - one of the darkest/thickest beers I have seen. A thin, dark brown head lingered for several minutes.

S: Sweet and pleasant. I am typically not one to love too sweet of a stout so at first it was a bit much. Strong scents of molasses with a touch of dark fruit and vanilla.

T: Molasses and figs up front with a really nice roasted malt finish which balances the sweetness perfectly for me. A fantastic amount of complexity among the flavors - some coffee, some chocolate, some dark cherries. A great tasting RIS all around.

M: Well carbonated, maybe even a little much for me, but not over the top. Thick, creamy, and syrupy as well, possibly the thickest stout I have tried.

O: A great RIS - I am looking forward to aging one and trying it a bit down the road. I really wish I had regular access to this one year round as it would definitely keep me happy through the winters.

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Photo of aepb1
4.6/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A- Dark brown/ black with a little dark brown head

S- Strong coffee, come alcohol

T- Roasted coffee, dark, very smooth

M- full bodied, creamy and slick, not a lot of carbonation

D- Great RIS, goes down nice and easy and local, glad they're distributing bombers to me area now

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Photo of kagent777
4.6/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle from the sample room, purchased in November of 2010 and cellared until now. Poured into a CCB snifter for my 100th review.

Appearance: Seriously, I would have thought this was dirty motor oil if I had not poured it myself. This is utterly black, pours with no head at all, no lacing. I thought at first that it had gone flat, but no.

Smell: Molasses, sweet chocolate, a little coffee, and some smokey notes along with some char. Definate herbal hops as well. As it warms I get a sense of cherries as.

Taste: This is probably the most intense beer I have had in a long time. The flavors meld so nicely. They really mirror the nose. Semi sweet chocolate, molasses and coffe flavors. The finish is long but not because of any bitterness, this one is semi sweet. The sweetness is not cloying at all.

Mouthfeel: It pours like motor oil, the mouthfeel is just as thick and sticky. The carbonation is right where it should be, just enough to lift the beer a little. This beer is soft and velvety.

Overall: A heavyweight of a beer. I really like it, but I can only recommend it to experienced beer drinkers because it is so intense. I had a sample fresh, but that was so small and so long ago that I am not sure what my aging had done.

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Photo of basscram
4.6/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

bought the 750 at cigar city on 10/30/10.
poured into my goblet glass and it pours like motor oil into a glass. their is no head or lacing, even as it is swirled around.
Color is black and light brown at the top. cannot shine light through this.

smell is slightly charred nuts but VERY light smell.
first taste is wow! Very thick. As I let it move along my tongue, a lot of chocolaty goodness is what I experience, almost like M&M's. The alcohol is hidden in the taste! There is some floral tastes as it subsides on the back of the tongue.

I put drink-ability pretty low because this is definitely not one you would want to gulp but sip on slowly and enjoy like a fine brandy or wine.

I'm very impressed with this beer.

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Photo of MNishCT77
4.59/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle from a Sat., 12/20/2014 Better Beer Authority Bottle Share (thanks, Richard H..), unknown vintage (2013?), poured into a BBA snifter glass, drank over 15 minutes

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Greg is the man, nuff said. Another one I can finally cross off my list, I was able to open this one up and go to town on it last night. Served cold and poured into a snifter over the course of a couple hours, this one was consumed on 02/11/2010.

Best pour that could have happened, hands down. Simply astounding with the deepest, darkest black color possible and a huge, towering head of dark tan that nearly over topped the rim of the glass and simply refused to go anywhere. Could not have asked for it to look better, perfect. Could smell this one from across the room. Dark molasses, coffee, dark, dark chocolate just filling the air. Hints of dark wood, sweet, licorice, just an immense, immense aroma coming off of this one, I was really, really impressed from the start. Each sip seemed fuller more intense and luscious then the one before. Dark chocolate and coffee and dominant now, with vanilla creeping in but not overtaking, then a smack down of lightly bitter coffee seals it and I am in love. A full on RIS, this is what it is all about. Warming brings the coffee out front and center and everything starts to become clear now. Really just is impressive, impressive beer. One of the fullest feels, similar to Dark Lord or Abyss in that department, outstanding balance and flavor and could not ask for it to come across more full.

Overall one of my new favorites. I cannot even imagine what Hunaphus will bring if this one is as good as this, I am just beyond impressed.

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Photo of ThickNStout
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle. Bottled July 2011. Served in a Cigar City snifter. 

Pours gleaming jet black with a most beautiful two fingers of chocolate head. Small occasional patches of lace. 

Rich aromas of dark fruit, molasses and cocoa. Sweet and inviting. 

Wow, this is a powerhouse of classic robust imperial stout goodness! Raisin, currant, dark chocolate, molasses, leather, cherry pit, creamed coffee and caramel. Rich and delicious, only small traces of the 11% abv. 

Nailed it on the feel! Oily thick, with a small pop or carbonation. Creamy, tongue coating and heavy. A lingering sweet thick aftertaste. 

Another homerun from Cigar City. One of the finest imperial stouts that I've had the pleasure of trying. I'm sure the year of aging didn't hurt anything and I'm looking forward to what the other one I have will taste like in another 6-12 months. If you can try this, you should. Fantastic. 

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Photo of adam42381
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Review from notes at World of Beer - Fort Myers on 9/17/11.

Poured on draft into a snifter.

Appearance: Dark as night, completely opaque motor oil black with a 1 finger creamy dark mocha head. Perfect lacing. I don't think a stout could look any better.

Smell: Coffee, chocolate, sweet malt and a touch of toffee.

Taste: Sweet malt, chocolate and molasses up front followed by coffee in the middle before ending with toasted malt and bitter hops. Aftertaste is bitter with a touch of burnt toast.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied, thick and creamy. Very smooth.

Drinkability: Excellent drinkability. The alcohol will keep me from drinking multiples, but you could easily down more than one.

Overall: Excellent beer overall. I love it from the bottle, but the draft was just phenomenal. If you ever see it on draft, make sure you try it.

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Photo of SGDJosh
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

CCB Marshal Zhukov Imperial Russian Stout bottled on August 31 2012 and tasted on 9/14 from bottle. Fresh tasting...

Pours pitch black with a dark brown head. Very thick

Smells of rich coffee, espresso, smoke, roasted malts. Long dry finish that leaves you wanting more.

Mouthfeel is very full bodied, plenty of tactile sensations - velvety but dry.

Overall opinion is that this beer is great! Loads of flavor and mouthfeel. This is a fresh tasting and I will revisit a cellared bottle later

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Photo of mcallister
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Amazing looking beer. Deep oily black with one of the best colored heads I've witnessed. Dark mocha colored and oozing rolling bubbles like molten lava.

Layers of black fruits and dark chocolate. Burnt caramel and some light leathery notes and earth. Blueberry, currant, tobacco, and more, great nose.

This is a fantastic beer, smooth, round, creamy mouthfeel. Tastes like a mocha latte. Cream, burnt sugar, espresso and chocolate in the front and middle, and black fruits and earth through the finish. Delectable beer huge malts, perfect balance and amazing mouthfeel.

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Photo of CampusCrew
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

appearance: deep dark black, nearly ebony, loaded head and creamy garnet reddish froth. it was almost metallic swirling around in the glass. Was beautiful and probably the most attractive beer I have seen in a glass.

smell: loaded coffee, and heavy chocolate aromas

taste: rich and slight chocolate roasted flavors but had a smooth rich taste, Dry, not sweet at all. loads of coffee flavor.

mouthfeel: thick, creamy, good carbonation and very tasty

drinkability: amazing, best stout and one of the best beers I have eve had. I compared this side by side with a BORIS and it blew it away. Not even close.

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Photo of costanzo_mike
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pours a silky black color with a dark brown head, lingers for a short while then dissipates. Some lacing on the glass as it drinks down. Molasses, espresso, toffee on the nose. Bright molasses flavor at the front of the taste, finishes very clean with rich espresso. Mouthfeel is smooth, very light carbonation. This is excellent, really enjoyed it.

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Photo of Beechner719
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Awesome Beer. Pours dark black with a nice tan head. This thing is like a milkshake. Very thick. It is everything a RIS should be. It doesnt get much better than this. If you havent had this beer, get it immediately. Smells of coffee with a tiny hint of cherries as it warms up. I would recommend drinking this at room temperature. The characteristics come out a lot more.

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Photo of silentjay
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

holy shit thats a thick, dark pour. I swear its coming out in chunks. a very dark head that is the color of coffee with just one creamer added. it sticks around a bit and leaves behind wonderful lacing.

first aroma is black strap molasses backed up with tons of chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, some firewood, a bit of charcoal (not smoky, though). an intoxicating aroma.

a woody flavor comes out first with black strap molasses, pure cacao, burnt dark roast coffee. maybe a bit of licorice and definitely some charcoal. so rich. This beer is gonna last me all night.

one of the thickest beers I have come across. carbonation is spot on as well as it makes its presence known, but does not take away from the creaminess.

wow. Thanks to Retail1LO for sending this my way. I definitely like this one better than the Parabola I traded for it (though thats no slouch either!) gotta get my hands on more of this. As well as more Cigar City beers. Judging only by this example, they may have worked out the carbonation/quality assurance kinks they had previously.

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Photo of drmcleod10
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Generously shared by John and split between essentially him and I
2013 bottle poured into 2 snifters

A - Dark as night. Thick creamy pour that leaves a 1/4 finger mocha head that resides back into the glass after a moment. Really solid looking stout

S - Smell is huge nose of tobacco with dark fruits, figs and some roasted dark chocolate. One of the most tobacco forward smelling beers I've had

T - Taste follows the nose with huge tobacco and dark fruit flavors on the front followed by bitter dark chocolate and hints of molasses and coffee

M - Creamy full bodied stout with moderate amount of carbonation

O - This was an awesome beer that I was honored to be able to try. Thanks John

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Photo of STEG
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

God damn you jefferz5000, your constant instigation has caused me finally to take down the Z-man, on such a special occasion as this, a tuesday night!

Pours a pitch black 100% opaque light destroying black hole of a color. There is no closer hexadecimal color value closer to this than #000. Even a vigourous pour leaves a very thin of almost as hatefully colored head. By far and away, the darkest head I have ever seen on a beer. I would have liked to see more head though, that's what she said...

It smells great too, the alcohol and chocolate combine to create a truly intoxicating smell, it has very light coffee in here as well.

This sublime beer has booze up front followed quickly by dark chocolate and malt and then has a bitter coffee finish.

Mouthfeel is truly sublime, its so smooth, viscous, creamy, and syrupy all at once making for something truly decadent that can be enjoyed sip after sip.

Alcohol is present but not overwhelming, there is a lingering coffee aftertaste that is holding it back but not bad on the drinkability scale.

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Photo of azorie
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

All I can say is outside of the UK, this is best example of a prefect RIS, there is IN FLORIDA.

rich creamy sweet, dark chocolate taste, just heaven... really the rest is just for the eyes.

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Photo of camil1mj
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2011 release poured at cellar temp into my Founder's snifter,

A: B E A utiful! Deep, dark brown. 2 finger mocha head that is slow to recede. Lots of sticky lacing. One of the best looking stouts I have ever seen.

S: Roasted, chocolately malt.

T: Just like it smells. Deep, dark, silky, roasted chocolate.

M: The thickest, chewiest, creamiest stout I have ever had the pleasure of drinking. This make this one stand out.

O: One of the top 3 non-BA stouts I have had. CCB deserves the acclaim it gets for the stouts they produce.

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Photo of GJ40
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Sampled from a 750ml bottle dated 31Aug2012 in a DFH snifter. Thanks surge1311!!!

A - Deep black with no light. A sturdy tan head that clings nicely to the glass. I enjoyed watching it stick with each sip then oh so slowly slide down the side.

S - Rich malt aromas with molasses, brown sugar, roasted marshmallows, chocolate and coffee. Great depth and complexity.

T - Like the aroma, rich malts dominate. Lots of dark chocolate. Great complexity. Smooth with no rough edges.

M - Thick and chewy yet an aspect of light and airy. Fantastic.

O - This is the stuff oil workers scrape off their shoes. But unlike them, this is not something you wish away. A great brew from an unlikely part of the country.

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Photo of BierJager89
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A: Obsidian with a dark brown head, perhaps the darkest beer I have ever seen.

S: Dark chocolate, coffee, molasses in a delicious nose.

T: Dark chocolate, but sweet, molasses.

M: Full bodied and creamy smooth.

O: This beer is an epic drinking experience. One of the best non-barrel aged imperial stouts I've ever had.

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Photo of Thirstygoat
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've had a couple of these for a while and decided that the return of stout weather justified drinking one.
It is cliche but this is pitch black, pretty much black hole dark.
The most extraordinary thing about this exceptional ale was the smell, tobacco, sticky fruit, heavy like every thing about this.
The taste is the mouth full of malt, roasted malt, after three years in the bottle no hops to speak of.
Thick robust feel.
As you might guess I really like this stuff, maybe as much as some of the 4.75s I gave under the old system. Find this, cellar this , drink this!

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Photo of kylehay2004
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Very dark three finger thick head on a jet black body. Initially after the pour it's hard to find the head - body transition, an interesting finding. The head stays forever it seems gradually releasing aroma of sweet and dark chocolate, roasted malt, oak/rum, brown sugar and vanilla.Flavor follows with a very complex and dynamic character. Opening with cola, milk chocolate and cream moving to dark chocolate and roasted malts finishing with vanilla and coffe, a great beer. Full, thick body coating the palate and light carbonation. This one lives up to the hype and expectation. A must try.

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Marshal Zhukov's Imperial Stout from Cigar City Brewing
95 out of 100 based on 518 ratings.