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Marshal Zhukov's Imperial Stout - Cigar City Brewing

Marshal Zhukov's Imperial StoutMarshal Zhukov's Imperial Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

1,592 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1592
Reviews: 456
rAvg: 4.36
pDev: 9.63%


Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing visit their website
Florida, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
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 added by: BigMcLargeHuge on 11-17-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,592 | Reviews: 456 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of WillCarrera
WillCarrera

Ohio

4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle, bottled August 31, 2012, poured into a tulip glass.

A- Absolutely gorgeous. Pours pitch black, thick and viscous looking. As it fills the glass it slowly produces a two-finger, dark chocolate brown, thick and creamy head, which has nice retention and spotty lacing.

S- Loads of chocolate and roasted grain, some char, fruit and vanilla.

T- A big rush of malty sweetness, chocolate, cocoa powder and molasses, after a bit some roasty flavors become more dominant, with roasted grain and a huge amount of coffee. Some notes of fruit and vanilla are playing in the background. Slight alcohol warmth towards the finish, but it's very well hidden in general.

M- Full-bodied, low carbonation, has a creamy, velvety and slightly slick feel with some lingering chewiness.

O- This is a damn impressive beer, one of the tastiest stouts I've had in the last few months. Everything you could want in a stout is here in a big way and it all works very well together. If you were fighting your way room-by-room through the burning ruins of the Reichstag this is the kind of beer you would want to be drinking.

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2012 04:29:36 | More by WillCarrera
Photo of stouts4me
stouts4me

Illinois

4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2011 bottle poured into my 3F snifter.

A: Holy mudslick ! Blackest Black you can imagine, thick and very chewy. Looks like a chocolate mousse on top of a pour of motor oil - absolutely THE BEST if you love BIG stouts !

S: a bit of cherry,fruity, plum, with the barley toasted aroma, really very nice and welcoming.

T: Well, if you have read to here , you KNOW what is coming here - GEE-BUS !!! Unreal, deliciousness, just mouth-coating, smooth, not-to-sweet, awesome and so beguiling. You can't stop comi8ng back for more tastes. Smell the awesomeness, swish it and chew it and let it slowly drip down your throat.

M: thick, smooth, delightlyfully chewy , and just friggin' mouth-coating greatness !

O: EPIC. TOTALLY, will definetly seek out additional bottles.

Thank You Cigar City, signed, Fan For Life - stouts4me.

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2012 01:41:53 | More by stouts4me
Photo of yamar68
yamar68

Minnesota

4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to robinsmv for this one!

Pours like motor oil... except maybe darker, and thicker. So sexy looking - dark coffee brown head fades to a thin, well retaining film that smears lacing across a layer of oily alcohol legs.

Oh my... bittersweet. Chocolate cookies, fudge... it even SMELLS thick. Damn. Some brown sugar or cinnamon, french toast, molasses... nose-gasm.

Bittersweet chocolates of all kinds, abstract roasted malt qualities, incredibly thick and exceedingly smooth, alcohol character goes virtually undetected... I wonder how many calories are in this bottle. My guess would be a lot, and it's worth every fuckin' sip.

Damn good.

Serving type: bottle

11-12-2012 02:29:25 | More by yamar68
Photo of Bitterbill
Bitterbill

Wyoming

4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks go out to Matt for the bottle!

It pours black with a 2 finger head of tan foam.

The smell is all sorts of complex; coffee, milk chocolate, toffee, sweet malt, molasses. Wow.

The taste follows suit. All the smells are there with the bottom line of this being a very malty/sweet RIS with just enough bitterness to keep it from getting cloying. Super good tasting and the alcohol is hidden pretty well.

The smoothest of mouthfeels with a better drinkability rating than it has a right to, this is simply marvelous.

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2012 20:14:45 | More by Bitterbill
Photo of draheim
draheim

Washington

4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750mL (bottled 8/31/2012) into a snifter. Pours a thick, oily pitch black w/ a deep reddish tan head. Absolutely opaque and black as night. This is an impressive looking imperial stout.

Aroma is thick and sticky as well. Molasses, dark roasted malt, rich chocolate, vanilla, dark stone fruit.

Taste faithfully follows nose. Bittersweet chocolate, sticky molasses, rum-soaked figs, espresso, vanilla, toffee, and just a touch of booze. There's a ton of dense sticky sweetness here, but it's balanced perfectly by a sharp, cocoa-like bitterness.

Mouthfeel is chewy and coating; thick and rich. Decadent. Yet it somehow manages to vanish off the palate and finishes semi-dry, leaving behind a nice chocolatey aftertaste that lingers like a rich bittersweet truffle.

Overall, a truly impressive Russian imperial stout and a genuine dessert beer. I was expecting this to be good, but not this good.

Serving type: bottle

05-14-2013 03:07:56 | More by draheim
Photo of alaimoa
alaimoa

Connecticut

4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Figured I'd try a random stout I had in the basement for a few months and came away very impressed. Jai is a great IPA and Marshall is amazing so I can only imagine what the Hunapu is like. Jet blac pour with a reddish/brown head and a thin line of lacing. Smell is roasted coffee and burnt sugar and a bit of raisin. Sips an upfront coocoa and roasted coffee with sweetness and a bit of a thin mouthfeel but made up by a lingering full mouth coating sticky sweetness.
Overall it has quite a few layers of flavor. Some people may knock it on sweetness or booziness but I actually like it and think it would develop nicely with some age

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2013 21:32:54 | More by alaimoa
Photo of nootch23
nootch23

Massachusetts

4.51/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2012 bottle poured into a snifter.

A - pours a thick, midnight black with a half finger of chocolate colored head. Can't see anything through the glass.

S - great smelling beer, smells really big. Smells of chocolate, roasted malt, coffee underlying the big boozy smell that is right up front.

T - really complex tasting beer. Really big notes of chocolate, molasses, licorice, coffee, and a lot of fruit flavors like cherries and prunes, if you can believe that. The alcohol is definitely there and has that alcohol burn with each drink. Despite the alcohol in each taste, it's an easy beer to drink, really smooth going down.

M - thick presence lingers with lingering tastes of chocolate, fruits and coffee. very smooth finish.

O - this is a great beer yet a pretty big one that will probably be unbelievable given 2-3 years in the cellar. I love complex tasting beers and each flavor plays beautifully off the other. The booziness is present but is balanced out pretty well so its not overwhelming or overpowering the rest of the beer. I'm really glad I had this and thank akuyper for sending it along in our trade. This is a beer that is definitely worth seeking out and trying and/or cellaring. Am very interested to see how this beer tastes after aging for a few years. I can see why it's so highly regarded.

Serving type: bottle

03-19-2013 18:28:02 | More by nootch23
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Was down in FL for the holidays and I agreed to pick one of these up for someone in MD. The only place I could find it for sale in Gainesville was a beer bar that sold beer to go. I purchased the rather expensive (for me) bottle of beer and proceeded to drink the rest of the night away. The owner of the bar (and a friend of mine) asked me what beer I had bought to go and when I told him (he had not heard of it, been a busy 6 months for him) he promptly bought another one for he and I to share.

Poured from a bottle into a tulip glass (Delirium tulip). Beer is viscous as it pours from the bottle into the glass, jet pitch as dark as can be black in color. Leaves a residue where the beer hits the side walls of the tulip. There isn't much head or carbonation (its 11% alcohol) but when you swirl the beer a big thick head of really dark brown bubbles (small combining into large) forms and falls away leaving a ton of lacing on the walls. The carbonation level cannot support the head. This beer looks amazing. I've never seen such a dark colored head.

The aroma is overwhelming and complex. The flavor of this beer had better not let me down, the aroma is beautiful. First off its strong. I stick my whole nose into the tulip and breath in. I can smell chocolate and sweet malt. The alcohol is there but its not solventy it adds to the experience and helps accent the roasted coffee flavors. The sweetness is the dominant flavor.

Time to drink finally. The beer was served a little too cold so I held the bowl of the glass in my hand for several minutes enjoying the aroma. Mouthfeel is good, big bodied despite the high ABV, lots of flavors that completely coat the mouth. The alcohol is not as obvious in the beer as it was in the aroma, the flavor is dominated by a strong sweetness (that the alcohol may be contributing to) in the front of a good full malt character and then an avalanche of roasted espresso and coffee in the back of the mouth. Beer continues to surprise by not having an aftertaste. The coffee flavor is present and lingers but there is not secondary flavors. This is a world class beer and one of the, if not the best, Russian Imperial Stout I have ever had. I'm sure the oak and cedar aged versions are even more complex and amazing.

Serving type: bottle

12-28-2009 16:46:28 | More by drabmuh
Photo of urwithdave
urwithdave

Florida

4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewing from notes taken on 03/20/10. Poured into a CCB snifter at the tasting room at the brewery.

A- Pours black as coal. Two fingers of a dark brown head. Excellent retention and a crazy amount of lacing left behind.

S- Big roasted malts, chocolate, and molasses.

T- Follows the nose. Lots of dark chocolate, roasted malts, and sweet molasses. This beer is heavenly. Some dark fruits are also present, however, I get more of the chocolate with every pull.

M- Nice and creamy. I really want another sip.

D- I was at the brewery at 1050 AM waiting for them to open the doors. I had 3 snifters full for breakfast. I could have kept going well into dinner!!!! I may have needed help walking, but I seriously could have polished off another 3 snifters!

Serving type: on-tap

04-03-2010 07:20:24 | More by urwithdave
Photo of r0nyn
r0nyn

New York

4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into my Dogfish Head snifter. Courtesy of fellow BA infi. Split with him and BA NYManc.

Pours a ridiculous jet back that's completely opaque. Looks like motor oil coming out of the bottle. No head whatsoever, though. A few swirls gives it some sticky lacing coating the side of the glass. Smell is...whoa. Super sweet caramel malts override the senses, along with dark chocolate, coffee and espresso. A bit of warming gives it a little bit of alcohol at the end. Massively impressive.

Taste starts off with some malty sweetness that quickly gives way to all the flavors from the nose. Tons of dark chocolate, espresso and coffee. Just...wow. Everything has a pleasing roasted quality as well, giving depth to the flavor profile. The sweetness is the most pleasant part of the brew, at least for me. That caramel sugary flavor just complements the other nuances so well. The mild bitterness and sweetness lingers long into the aftertaste. Mouthfeel is smooth, smooth smooth like velvet. Rich and creamy with excellent body and balance. I am quite impressed.

Drinkability is suitably high, thanks to the absolutely delicious taste and superb mouthfeel. The ABV is hidden very well, making this a very dangerous brew. Definitely one of my new favorite Russian Imperial Stouts. I just wish it was more readily available around here. Thanks to infi for sharing this great brew with me.

Serving type: bottle

10-07-2010 03:30:02 | More by r0nyn
Photo of KickbacksSteve
KickbacksSteve

Florida

4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2011 vintage. Poured from 750 ml bottle into an efes snifter. Tudor brown head, decent retention. Oily, clear lacing slides down the glass. Aroma consists of roasted malt, coffee, slight alcohol, even a touch of bacony smoke. Taste includes coffee, faint chocolate, slight underlying sweet malt and roasted malt. Mouthfeel is very, very thick and viscous. Certainly more amazing upon warming. Spectacular.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2011 04:19:32 | More by KickbacksSteve
Photo of s1ckboy
s1ckboy

Massachusetts

4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2010 bottle with a year of age on it.

A - Black with a nice beep brown small(ish)head.

S - Big. roasty, chocolate, malty

T - Like the nose. Chocolate, roasty, coffee, malty. Very smooth.

M - Very thick, slightly oily. Coats the mouth.

O - Very good. Up there witht the best imperial stouts.

Serving type: bottle

08-26-2011 00:59:24 | More by s1ckboy
Photo of GallowsThief
GallowsThief

Florida

4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured out of a bomber into my tulip. 2011 vintage.

A – Black. Beyond black. Huge 3 fingers of creamy deep dark brown head that just clings to the glass. Looks like chocolate egg cream froth.

S – Dark chocolate, toffee, molasses, coffee, vanilla.

T – Huge and heavy roasted malts immediately. Full dark chocolate taste right after but not making this overly sweet. It is there but its not a super sweet stout. Vanilla and molasses present. Has a nice bitter effect at the end. Warming alcohol finishes it off.

M – Thick and creamy. It totally coats your mouth from corner to corner. Viscous is the word. Nice.

O – Excellent stout. Its got a great complex taste. Leaves you wanting more. Was an easy drinker considering the ABV. Glad I bought a few of these.

Serving type: bottle

08-28-2011 00:15:31 | More by GallowsThief
Photo of JayS2629
JayS2629

Alabama

4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured jet black with thick, dark mocha head that fades slowly into rich, creamy rings. Sticky black legs like molasis run down the edges of the glass. Beautiful.

Bold, rich, roasted coffee punches through dark chocolate, molasis, over-ripe plums and dark cherry notes. Hints of vanilla, tobacco and licorice fade into some warm, inviting, rum fumes in the finish.

Dark chocolate and molasis balanced with roasted malts and black coffee create a background for dark fruit notes of cherry, figs, and plum. Hints of vanilla, dark cola, tobbacco and licorice. Earthy hops balance rum notes in the finish to create a complex and enjoyable beer.

Rich, syrupy, smooth and silky. Warming. Thick and sticky.

Super rich, complex, enjoyable imperial stout. Defninite warming sipper to share on a cold night.

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2011 20:00:41 | More by JayS2629
Photo of zac16125
zac16125

South Carolina

4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle poured into a snifter
2011 version, but no specific dates or other distinguishing numbers

A: Pours a viscous, viscous, opaque jet black, with 2 plus fingers width of bubbly yet dense, dark,  chocolate ice cream colored head.  This is the darkest head I've seen on a beer, ever.   Great retention, and takes minutes to dissipate down to a drinkable level.  Leaves a decent amount of lacing.  Amazing looking beer.

S: Very aromatic from the moment I opened the bottle.  Big dark fruit characters with tons of fig and some raisin.  There are even notes of unripe sour plums.  Chocolate aroma is present as well, along with some roasted malt and toffee notes.  The alcohol presence is noticeable but not negatively so.  There is a wood oaky aroma as well.  Lots going on with the nose, but dark fruits are the most prominent.  Very nice.

T: Initial sip gives roasted malts and dark fruit sweetness.  Other flavors noted are fig,  an oak flavor thats bourbon like, milk chocolate,  a nutty character, bitter bakers chocolate on the back end, and even a hint of coconut at one point. Early on its almost too sweet, but as it warms the sweetness is balanced by other flavors including hops and roasted malt, and an earthy grassy flavor.  The flavor profile is complex, with large variations from sip to sip.  Very good.

M/D: Silky smooth, very nice.  A very chewy mouthfeel and does a great job of coating the palate.  About as full bodied as you can get.  Carbonation is very minimal, in a good way, which makes the head and retention that much more impressive.  Pretty good drinkability considering how massive this beer is.  

O: Overall, a great beer.  Really top notch.  Actually it's very similar to Hunahpu , except the Hunahpu flavor profile is slightly ( and I mean only slightly) better, and I actually like it more than rum barrel aged Hunahpu.  A great offering that I highly recommend trying if you can get it.

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2012 02:19:16 | More by zac16125
Photo of Goblinmunkey7
Goblinmunkey7

Massachusetts

4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to injuredreserve for the bottle. Shared with Bilco and angrybabboon

Appearance: Thick, dark, and massive. Pours like motor oil and sludge. So very still. No head. Syrupy and viscous. I've poured some big stouts, but this might be the scariest thing I've ever seen come out of a bottle.

Smell: Char. So very burnt. It's charred and aggressive. Smoke and more smoke. Meat ends. Turn up the grill and burn those malts. Sweetness is in your face. Alcohol pulls through, but is quickly subdued by the all out malt assault. Coffee and cocoa. Holy hell. Some vanilla and dark fruit. It's all about the char.

Taste: Unrelenting malt aggression. Burnt, charred, and sweet. Somehow they've achieved Maillard reaction flavors. Did they cook this with a blow torch? Bitter cocoa and some fresh coffee. Meat and a mellow roasted compliment. It's confusing. Plums and raisins. Cherry. Waves of flavor and depth. Complex and then some.

Mouthfeel: Heavy, slick, and full. It's beastly. So very heavy. Carbonation is almost non-existent. So much body.

Overall: This transcends the levels of normality. We're talking about something that fringes on a solid. It's a beast and a half. So much char that a bottle would be impossible to drink alone. Bring your friends and be astounded.

Serving type: bottle

04-21-2012 01:54:41 | More by Goblinmunkey7
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Maybe the deepest pour of any stout I have come across,jet black with a deep cocoa powder colored thick creamy head,just awesome.Deep molasses and coffee aromas really stand out when pouring,some roasted nut and chocolate round out an aggressive aroma profile.Thick and creamy feel to the beer makes it glide down to easy.Flavors of black strap molasses and chocolate start out on the palate wich is somewhat sweet but not overly so,French roast coffee and mild earthy tones keep the beer balanced and more quaffable,the alcohol is there but it didn't make it less drnkable.Wow this is a brash bad ass imperial stout,no wonder the high ratings,one of the best beers I have had this year...if not the best.

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2012 23:55:22 | More by oberon
Photo of sukwonee
sukwonee

Washington

4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2011 vintage.

A: Black motor-oil body with one finger mocha head that lingers. Lots of lacing.

S: Roasted malt, dark chocolate. Smells very close to Hunahpu without the peppers.

T: Yum... very very good tasting stout. Dark chocolate, roasty malt, coffee, some hops. Taste is very... long...(couldn't find a better adjective) and it lingers very long too afterwards - dark chocoalte and bitterness. It's awesome and I think it will age very well too, although it tastes great now.

M: Same and Hunahpu. Thick, syrupy, chewy, awesome.

O: This is probably my favorite non-barrel aged and specially treated stout to date.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2012 00:52:19 | More by sukwonee
Photo of tectactoe
tectactoe

Michigan

4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to nedvalton for this one! Definitely big one on my wanted list. Marshall Zhukov pours dark as fuck with another dark as fuck tan head - seriously, this is incredible. The only beer that can rival this level of darkness and viscosity is probably Founders Imperial Stout. If the look is any indication, this is gonna be a good beer. The nose is heavily roasted and super malt-heavy as expected. Deep espresso beans, cocoa, bittersweet fudge - this beer SMELLS thick. Mostly sweet in the aroma, but it shows some signs of light char, roastiness, and even a hint of leafy bitterness.

Swish! This beer wafts across my tongue about as thick and dense as they come. Waves of thick, sweet fudge, chocolate, and heavy roasted malts rush back and forth with huge robustness. After the initial taste, the brew seems to lighten up a bit and the chocolate takes on more of a sweet, milky flavor. Some light licorice and anise flavors add to the sweetness as well. Much to my liking, there is a very noticeable hop character; ashy, leafy, and herbal, providing a nice bitterness that slashes through the sweetness of the beer. There is some char and roast, but not quite enough to reveal a "smokey" flavor. Heavily woody and even a little nutty on the end with a huge dry-roasted coffee bean aftertaste. Medium carbonation provides the creamy and chewy mouth feel of this beer - big, robust, and powerful.

This is a damn fine beer. It's got just about everything I'm looking for in an imperial stout. For an 11%-er, the alcohol was hidden well, making this one dangerous. Sweet, roasty, and even bitter, this beer will put you on your ass. It's huge, it's powerful, it's not for sissies. Definitely rivals some of my other favorites, FIS and Ten FIDY. I wish this stuff were easier for me to acquire, I'd have it all the time. But maybe that's a good thing.

Serving type: bottle

02-04-2013 05:38:05 | More by tectactoe
Photo of Stevedore
Stevedore

Wisconsin

4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Original review was a 75cl bottle of the 2012 vintage poured at a recent beer tasting yesterday, 7/21/2013, so about a year old. It was poured into an unlabeled snifter glass at room temperature. The updated review is a 75cl bottle of the 2013 vintage poured into a Cigar City snifter yesterday, 9/11/2013. So the updated review is a reflection of the beer when it's fresh.

The nose gives me a good bit of dark chocolate and definitely molasses, with a bit of hefty espresso in the background. I can tell that this beer is the base for the Hunahpu as I recognize some of the notes here. There is also a bit of hop presence here, kind of like in the Founders' Imperial Stout or Victory Storm King. Smells good.

The beer pretty much pours a super thick, viscous motor oil into a straight up dark brown abyss. It is opaque with a creamy mocha head that extends over a cm and slowly dissipates into nothingness, which leaves the beer a placid pool of blackness. Lacing is there in spots and falls back into the beer as I sip on it. It stains the glass brown as I swirl it, much like Hunahpu does. It's so viscous, thick and hefty. Great looking stout!

As I drink this beer, I recognize the flavours I pick out in the nose. The molasses is definitely strong here, providing a nice dose of pure sweetness that is balanced out by the bitterness of the dark chocolate and espresso notes. The finish is just so dark chocolatey and roasty, it is incredible. In my opinion, this finish is missing in the 1 year old Zhukov compared to the fresh version... in the aged version, there is a lot less espresso and the dark chocolate is really more of a lighter, non-bitter milk chocolate type of flavour. But yeah, the fresh version is very complex with so much intense flavours yet it is so well-balanced and transitions very well with each flavour I pick out. I had to remind myself that this was not aged in bourbon barrels.

The body itself is incredibly thick as I alluded to before.. typical Cigar City stout viscosity and creaminess. Such a full bodied beer, with solid carbonation that drinks so very smoothly and feels creamy. Chewy and decadent. Leaves a finish similar to bitter dark chocolate with some roast marshmallow sweetness and a dash of sweet brown sugar.

An outstanding Imperial Stout. Cigar City knows what they're doing.. well, we all knew that already. Zhukov is a strong, complex beer that will keep you warm and interested. I recommend trying this one at least once when you get the chance. Having tried a bunch of RIS's out there, I can confidently say that I prefer Marshal Zhukov to any of the acknowledged RIS heavyweights such as Darkness, Plead the Fifth, Dark Lord, Ten Fidy, Stone IRS etc. Now if Cigar City released a barrel-aged Marshall Zhukov in bottles.. the world would probably collapse on itself.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2013 03:57:10 | More by Stevedore
Photo of gueuzedreg
gueuzedreg

Colorado

4.53/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

'13 into a CS snifter. I am totally biased, as this is in my top 5 non BA RIS.

A- Jet black, black as night. Very dark. Decent ring of lacing with good retention.

S- I am getting a beautiful mix of molasses, black liquorice, chocolate, dark fruit, charred dark fruit. All of these things alone I don't like in a beer. But the fragrance is so amazing. I love it!

T- Following the nose with a beautiful harmony of all of the nose characteristics intertwined wonderfully. I feel a bit queer writing about this, but this beer is so fkng good.

M- Exactly what I want a RIS body to be. Thick. Chewy. Viscous. Glory sauce.

O- This is my favorite non-spiced RIS. Unreal. If you want to trade these to me, I will gobble them up. I have been rating under the median lately, but I know that I am over on this one. I am not a homer on this one either. Never lived in FLA, CO boy my whole life. Cheers!

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2013 22:52:21 | More by gueuzedreg
Photo of gcamparone
gcamparone

Rhode Island

4.54/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 25 oz bomber into a cigar city snifter. Thank you FLBrew for this guy!

Appearance - Pours a thick, oily, opaque black body with a nice 2 finger milk chocolate colored head that reduces very slowly to release those delicious aromas at a slow pace.

Smell - Strong, potent aromas of dark fruits, dark chocolate, molasses, toasted marshmallows, and coffee beans fill the air. Really inviting.

Taste - Let this one warm up for the flavors to come out. The first flavors to touch the tongue are bold coffee with cream, milk chocolate, vanilla, molasses.. these flavors develop into deep roasty notes, including cocoa, really dark chocolate, roasted malt. The aftertaste is charred and delicious.

Mouthfeel - Thick, rich, and savory. I enjoyed this over a 2 hour period and the flavors and thickness got better as it warmed.

This is what an imperial stout should taste like.. perfectly balanced, rich, complex, flavorful. Doesn't need a barrel or a boat load of crazy ingredients to make it world class.

Serving type: bottle

03-18-2014 01:15:20 | More by gcamparone
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atsprings

North Carolina

4.55/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to rtratzlaff for the hookup from the employee stash at Cigar City. 12oz bottle into a DFH Signature glass pours a deep motor oil like opaque black with a thin dark tan head that diminishes to a ring. Aroma is loads of roasted malts and dark chocolate with some molasses and espresso. The taste is a very sharp kick of heavily roasted malts with bitter bakers cocoa and some espresso and molasses, citrus hops come through a bit as the beer warms. The beer is a bit on the heavy side with its 11.5% abv certainly showing, but this is a very enjoyable sipper. This is a very enjoyable Imperial Stout, one I would certainly love to have again.

Serving type: bottle

08-14-2010 18:54:39 | More by atsprings
Photo of STEG
STEG

New York

4.55/5  rDev +4.4%
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.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2010 00:03:31 | More by STEG
Photo of phattysbox
phattysbox

New York

4.55/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bought a 32oz growler at the Bowery beer room (Whole Foods - NYC).

Poured jet black into a 7 oz tasting glass. Motor oil in color and consistency, one ca tell this is going to be a very viscous brew. A small 1/2 inch chocolate colored head establishes itself and lingers for quite a while. Surprised given the ABV. Looks great int he glass.

Smell: Nose is really complex here. Strong caramel and sweet malts dominate. Burnt raisins, plums, and dark chocolate fill the air when this is poured. Some roast but held in check by copious amounts of malt sweetness.

Taste: Quick flash of acrid roastiness that gives way to coffee-like character. Actually the coffee notes are quite strong in the brew and is very pleasing. The coffee/cappuccino notes mix well with a heavy malt profile. Chocolate covered figs and plums, followed by roasted caramel. The ABV is held in check with this brew - only a slight warming is noted. Mouthfeel is thick, creamy, and spot on for an RIS.

Overall: Great beer. Glad to be drinking this on a cold winter's night. Lots of complex things going on here - seek it out. I've never tried their barrel versions of this brew so I might have to now.

Serving type: growler

12-29-2010 18:03:56 | More by phattysbox
Marshal Zhukov's Imperial Stout from Cigar City Brewing
97 out of 100 based on 1,592 ratings.