St-Ambroise Stout Impériale Russe - McAuslan Brewing
Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
Ratings: 234 | Reviews: 115 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Reagan1984:
More User Reviews:
4.55/5 rDev +7.6%
Having absolutely loved their Oatmeal Stout, I expected great things from this brew. Thankfully, from the get-go, McAuslan's RIS did not disappoint!
I let this one warm up a few degrees in the bottle before pouring into a snifter. Impenetrable dark mocha hue, with about an inch of thick, tan head. Lots of sticky and sheeted lacing to boot. Looks fantastic.
The nose is potent and sweet, but very enjoyable. Dark chocolate, bourbon and brandy, marshmallow, caramel and roasted malt.
Wow; this is truly great stuff. The oak does wonders for this brew, evening out the sweet caramel and chocolate and letting the hop bitterness provide a late kick. Similar flavours as in the nose. The alcohol is covered fairly well, but it is evident in the finish.
Mouthfeel is velvety and sticky, with the carbonation providing a good spritz on the back of the tongue.
A stellar RIS. Definitely going back for a couple others to let them age a bit. Man, I love this brewery...
04-03-2010 20:40:33 | More by JohnnyBarman
4.33/5 rDev +2.4%
341 ml served in a chilled glass
Apperance - WOW - this beer comes to life right from the pour. Beer pours a black colour and the head is gorgeously cascading in my glass. The head is a thick brown that is about 3 fingers high, really holds its volume. It is impossible to tell carbonation due to the colour of the beer.
Smell - You do not have to get your nose close to the glass to smell this one. Can pick up some serious dark, deep tones of chocolate, coffee and vanilla. One would almost say expresso like is the smell. You can also smell the alcohol a bit.
Taste - exactly what you smell is what you taste, a full bodied and well developed beer. What a punch this packs, the aftertaste lingers around for a good few minutes. The beer hits you hard with the dark undertones of chocolate, coffee and vanilla then lingers around in the aftertaste.
Mouthfeel - rich and thick is how i would describe the mouthfeel, the added carbonation brings more flavour and a richness to this beer.
Drinkability - This is a beer i am glad i tried and enjoyed it! What a full tasting bodied beer and brings everything u can imagine to the table. Not truly my style, but I can appreciate this beer for what it is!
12-16-2010 02:45:25 | More by Swedes21
4.28/5 rDev +1.2%
341ml bottle poured into a Duvel tulip.
Pours a super black thats tick and oily. Slowly a very dark brown head forms and then slowly fades back down. Nose is light, a bit boozy, dark malts and some oaky bourbon notes.
Wow, the bourbon is strong in this! It's mice and sharp with a light burning taste. Very creamy, rich and malty with some woody/oaky flavors rounding it out very well. Great surprise to find this!
02-13-2011 01:29:15 | More by kingcrowing
British Columbia (Canada)
4.43/5 rDev +4.7%
2010 vintage, 12oz bottle poured into a tulip glass. Thanks to Viggo for hooking me up with this. Pours jet black with a huge brown head that leaves lots of lacing. Really nice looking! Aroma of wood, bourbon, and light smoke. Tastes great, it has vanilla, bourbon, coffee, and chocolate. Rich, smooth mouthfeel; the alcohol in this is well integrated and not at all overpowering. Great drinkability, I really enjoyed this one!
04-04-2011 04:40:17 | More by chickenm
4.38/5 rDev +3.5%
Appearance: pours sinfully dark, and thick; probably the darkest head I've seen, like a milk chocolate bar; fine suds but not full head
- just read an earlier review, motor oil is a spot on descriptor!
Aroma: pleasant chocolate, not overly bitter; even getting some rough wood which is remarkable
Taste & Mouthfeel: like an espresso shot, rich and creamy ending with just a mild bitterness (not the intense, acidic bitterness of a poorly pulled shot); there's something sweeter at the start, dates or maybe the vanilla - the bourbon ageing has an impact, but then the espresso flavour takes control again and lingers
Overall: could double as a coffee porter/stout, the flavour is so reminiscent of it; very well-managed, with none of the acidic bitterness that is common in similar dark beers; would absolutely drink this again, the bourbon wood ageing is a great addition
10-11-2012 02:16:36 | More by BGDrock
3.8/5 rDev -10.2%
341ml bottle, 2011 edition. The encasing cardboard tube has a little blurb displaying the Cyrillic, French, and English versions of 'cheers'. Awesome!
This beer pours a solid black abyss, with ever so slight cola-hued basal edges, and a teeming amount of dense, foamy, pillowy chocolate milk head, which sticks around like the nagging sniffles, before giving way to the clarity of some broad Joshua tree lace around the glass.
It smells of mildly caramelized malt, baker's chocolate, dark drupe fruit, an acrid vanilla woodiness, bitter citrus and leafy hops, and a boozy, nose-twitching twinge. The taste is bitter chocolate malt, a bit of weird saltiness, woody bourbon cask essences, softened west coast pine and citrus hops, and a skulking alcohol edginess.
The bubbles are as soft as you could really want them to be, the body a near-full weight, smooth, and almost unobstructed in its silky smoothness. It finishes mostly sweet, in a tempered manner, however, as the wood influence and hop bill continue to assert themselves in the sanity-keeping dance that is this beer.
Well, I would imagine that demanding ol' Kate would have appreciated this offering - lots and lots of stuff going on - sweet, bitter, salty, floral, tangy, fruity - you name it, it's here. The booze, at this point, makes things a little iffy as far as outright drinkability is concerned, but that's a minor piffle for the regal imbibers amongst us.
01-15-2012 01:32:04 | More by biboergosum
4.47/5 rDev +5.7%
Pours black as crude, with not a trace of a colourful highlight to be found. It's black depth is abyssal. Crowned by a thin layer of relatively well retained mocha head. Really nice lace. Aroma of black licorice, dark chocolate, coffee, and whiskey. Also smells of vanilla, smoke, and wood. Palette of french roast coffee and dark fruit. A hint of smoke in the background. It's charred, roasty bitterness is intense and lingers long. You can taste the bourbon, but even as it warms it never becomes boozy and alcoholic. Very dry with almost no residual sweetness. Almost full bodied with low carbonation. Not quite chewy, but very smooth and silky feeling. You look forward to the next mouthful between each mouthful. Delicious.
05-30-2010 04:44:06 | More by mintjellie
3.98/5 rDev -5.9%
Pours thick black with lots of initial light brown head, that leaves lacing down the glass. A little smoke and expresso in the aroma. Above average and creamy mouthfeel, not the thickest of the style but very good. Bitter in a high proportion to sweet, this is a dangerously good drinker. Very very good, with expresso buffered by baker's chocolate.Bottle courtesy of Lubiere. Kudos to the brewery for pricing this properly for a limited edition ($6)
01-20-2010 23:29:33 | More by Sammy
3.95/5 rDev -6.6%
Courtesy northyorksammy (thanks!). 2009 vintage. Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Portsmouth tulip.
Opaque seal brown liquid topped by two fingers of dense creamy somewhat active fawn colored foam. Rich creamy layers of lacing with the appearance of mocha. Light glassy legs.
Roasted malt, chocolate, molasses, clove, cinnamon, and barrel aromas (vanilla, coconut, vague char) combine to good effect in the nose. Slightly plum-y as well from the alcohol esters.
The hops are notable upon first sip, contributing a spicy moderate bitterness, but they are quickly consumed by the rich malt character which is toasty, smokey, and offset by treacle and dark fruit. The finish suggests tobacco, spice, along with an earthy clay-like quality. Very well balanced and full of flavor.
Medium-heavy bodied, with a cakey velvety feel (rather than oily). Well carbonated. Warming but not hot.
The barrel aging adds a subtle complexity to a rich forward base - I imagine this will continue to age well if you have some cellared, but it is drinking well now.
08-27-2010 21:59:02 | More by augustgarage
4.43/5 rDev +4.7%
Pours really black with an oily look.
Treadmendous head forming immediatly. Creamy, thick, surprisingly dark moccha in colour. Terrific look! Head comes down leaving patchy lacing. Wow!
N: Coffee, Moccha, herbal notes of fresh tobacco. dark fruits and maybe animal touch like wet leather! Brown sugar faintly coming up
M: Bitter! Bitterness is up-front and fantastik. I realy enjoy this since I'm an IPA lover. Carbonnation is medium and suits very well this beer. Flavours of coffee, alcohol and smoke flavors comes up after rewarming a bit, just like with the nose. Very complex in flavour.
Aftertaste is neverending, tremendous!
Almost perfect for a RIS.
Will age very well...
2013 edition: still tremendous beer!
12-13-2011 15:41:13 | More by blaje
4.31/5 rDev +1.9%
A 2011 bottle put aside for a couple years.
What a pour. Thick (in the best way) black liquid pours into a snifter and sends up a lively mocha head. Pretty much opaque. Glass covering lacings right to the finish. A 5 on appearance.
Dark red fruit on the nose with a hit of alcohol. Slightly smokey and roasty, but really it's all about big fruity malt flavours in the aroma.
Deep and dark. Loads going on with this. Bitterest chocolate. Vinous. Boozey wood. Ever-present dark red fruit. Even after a couple years I get significant hop bitterness.
Another 5 for mouthfeel. Incredibly satisfying imperial stout. Thick and chewy while being shockingly easy drinking.
Glad I laid this down for awhile. Well rounded and quite tasty. Great stuff.
12-03-2013 00:38:35 | More by CanuckRover
3.45/5 rDev -18.4%
A: Pours a deep dark black color, like crude motor oil. Has a nice 1 inch chocolate brown head that dissipates quickly.
S: Love the nose hear, notes of bourbon, oak, chocolate chip cookies, espresso and earth.
T: On the palate flavors of bitter chocolate, day old coffee, cream, and baking spices. I really dig the nose and mouthfeel but the taste isn't super well balanced. It's a little to bitter and roasty for me. Some may find this balances out the sweetness but I actually think it's to dry, and I'd like a little more richness.
O: Overall a solid beer, I'm curious if I would like a fresh one better.
07-31-2011 01:46:42 | More by nbree00
4.05/5 rDev -4.3%
Second time trying this. Poured into St-Ambroise glass.
A- Black. Absolutely no light coming through. No highlights whatsoever. Nice very dark brown head. Disappeared quick though. Thick bubbly ring around the glass. A bit of lacing.
S- Coffee, cocoa and alcohol are the main odors all mixed in with plenty of vanilla, molasses anise, as well as fruits such as prunes and blueberries. Warming up, a red wine smell gets more and more powerful.
T- Just like the smell. Wine tannins are very present. Taste like thick chocolaty red wine. Alcohol is definitely noticeable. Hops subtly adding both bitterness and flavor. Bitterness also similar to that of cocoa.
M- Surprising how thick this is. Tingly carbonation. Definitely a full mouthfeel. Make your lips sticky it's so concentrated.
D- Sipping material. Tastes good but a bit overwhelming. Wouldn't want to drink much more of this tonight.
One of the most satisfying 341ml bottles I've ever had.
A bit hot. Can't wait to taste an aged bottle. If I had to make a cheesy tagline for this: A taste of luxury.
A- Brown head has the texture of packing foam with a colour very similar to froth on top of an espresso. Pitch black liquid. No highlights whatsoever like last year. Whipped, lacy (!) lacing.
S- Smells like wine and cork. Alcohol came out second with a bit of lightly seasoned raw steak... strange, but that's what I smell. Black olives.
T- Man, this is pretty intense. So roasty it's almost like a smoked beer yet very different. It does taste a little green but it's to be expected with a beer that's almost created to be aged.
M- Not very dry. It leaves a whole lot of residue in the back of the throat. Very sticky. Possibly the thickest Quebec beer I've tried. Mikkeller BGB Weasel is the only one I remember being thicker and it was on tap with some special gas mix.
I'm not completely sold on the carbonation as I find it a bit to tingly but I don't really know how it could've been executed better.
D- This is drinking better than 2009. Maybe thanks to an evolving palate. Slight green taste is the only thing holding this back.
It is very good. I want to drink lots more. I'm having a hard time reviewing this because I'm feeling kind of overwhelmed by the awesomeness.
They must be pretty proud of this one over at McAuslan's. Pretty sure I'll be buying more next year.
03-20-2010 22:54:51 | More by Yoonisaykul
4.13/5 rDev -2.4%
A - pitch black, big tall deep brown head that retained endlessly, leaving all kinds of lacing
S - roasty, chocolately, light cola and some booziness
T - big burnt roasty flavour dominates up front, compliments of sweet cola and coffee, finishes with a smoky hint
M - big chewy body, a smoky and slightly chaulky feel, finishes big and bold with alcohol warmth
O - this is a super drinkable big stout, a stick-to-your-ribs kind of brew that keeps you warm and fuzzy
03-18-2012 01:27:59 | More by joemcgrath27
St-Ambroise Stout Impériale Russe from McAuslan Brewing
94 out of 100 based on 234 ratings.