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Lagunitas Imperial Stout - Lagunitas Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Lagunitas Imperial StoutLagunitas Imperial Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
84
good

655 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 655
Hads: 1,941
Avg: 3.71
pDev: 21.83%
Wants: 76
Gots: 386 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Lagunitas Brewing Company
California, United States | website

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout | 9.90% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 08-31-2001

2010 8.2% abv
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 655 | Hads: 1,941
Photo of DonDirkA
4.3/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nose of rich, heavy chocolate and roasted coffee. Roasted malts and chocolate syrup. It smells like my kind of stout. No booziness at all, which is nice for this high of an ABV. Taste is surprisingly heavy on the anise/black licorice. Coffee, dark roasted malts, anise and very slight chocolate. There is a warmth deep in my stomach but no hint of alcohol in the actual taste. The mouthfeel is much lighter than expected for an imperial stout. Its kind of bubbly. Still nice and heavy though. Overall its a nice stout (my first from Lagunitas) but I wish the taste reflected the nose more, I'm not always a huge fan of the anise-heavy stouts. Still delicious.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
4.3/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bomber time! Pours a super dark brown color with a creamy tan head.

Chocolate, cocoa, honey, fried plantains...mostly scents from sweet dark malts.

Mmmm, whats this? A hoppy chocolate candy bar?! Very smooth. Very drinkable. Fresh tasting with hints of dark berries and hot cocoa with marshmallows. Alcohol is hidden well and the hops add a nice clean, dry finish.

A smooth, semi-sweet easy drinking Impy Stout. Does not exactly fit the "Russian IS" category, but it does taste very good. I will be buying this again. Another fine offering from Lah-Goo-Knee-Tuss.

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Photo of DrinkMoreBigBeers
4.3/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

When pouring it looks dark brown and turns black as it settles into the glass while producing a dark tan head. The smell hits you with its roast qualities, dark bitter chocolate, smoke, bbq, and a slight sweetness. As you sip the beer the dark roast shows its face first; then coco, and sweetness with a cherry note, slightly bitterness, and a pleasant creamy finish. The beer has a satisfying medium to full fluffy - pillowy soft body that leaves an oily residue in your mouth.

The more I drink this beer the more I like it, it must be the warming to the right temperature that is doing it (make sure you let it warm up to around 50). Awesome stout and surprisingly drinkable at 9.9% abv with no hint of alcohol. If you like stouts this is a must have, Cheers!

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Photo of Elimination
4.3/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a bottle into a pint glass

Look is dark as night very little head at all.

Smell strong coffee, chocolate, whiskey, very good.

Taste a high amount of initial alcohol , coffee, chocolate but those taste taper off leaving a subtle sweetness of a milk chocolate. All is great but still remains very hot.

Mouthfeel has a light but smooth carbonation, he small amount of bubbles tingle leaving a thin lacing.

The drink is very high and is actually a fav imperial stout of mine, lagunitas remains a stellar brewery always

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Photo of tripelhops
4.3/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured from a 2oz bottle into atulip glass. a tan colored head builds up but drops quickly, with little lacing. Initial aroma is dark chocolate with a hint of black licorice and molassas. The taste is both sweet and bitter, just a tinge of alcohol heat. I think this is a very tasty imperial stout, and if it was available in my area I'd definately get it more, it's a terrific value.

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Photo of BethanyB
4.3/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look: Nearly opaque ebony, with a hit of mahogany highlights. The 1/2 finger head is a beautiful golden color, tightly beaded, with a smooth, flat top.

Smell: Peppery roasted malt brings a chic, new age element to the baseline bouquet of coffee and cream, cocoa powder, dark cherries and plums. A slight metallic tanginess somehow doesn't feel out of place.

Taste: There is an almost salty quality to this beer, but it's not weird at all, as calls to mind chocolate covered pretzels. White pepper and roasted malt balance out the fruity background, which is made up of prune juice, pomegranate, and wild blackberries.

Mouthfeel: Appropriately viscous, with medium carbonation and a tart finish which sticks to the sides of the tongue.

Overall: True to the Lagunitas style, this beer takes a lively, over the top approach without deviating from the style's trademark qualities. I'd call this a stout for IPA lovers, as the spice, carbonation, and dash of salt bring a familiar peppy kick to an otherwise dark and smooth set. Interesting, tasty, and fun to drink.

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Photo of Mitchster
4.3/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

$4.99 for a 22oz bottle @ Bevco.
72.45 IBU's, OG=1.092, 9.9% ABV
No ingredients per the website or bottle.

Pours out to a very clear near black with dark brown highlights, forming a soapy medium tan head with excellent retention and great lacing. Appears filtered. Moderate carbonation, ~2.5 carbs. Aroma opens with carob, light dark fruit, cola, leafy green hops in moderation. Mouthfeel is a little light bodied for an Imperial Stout..I wonder if they brewed this with sugar to get this OG, ABV, and FG because the mouthfeel is a tad thin for the style but not a disappointment as many reviewers quip. The taste is a recap of the aroma but in a different order...black currant, more dark fruit than the nose would have you guess with raisins and prunes, carob, a touch of black walnut, and a bit of cola in the finish. Bitterness is mild to moderate, a little on the sweeter side.

This is a good beer. I'm certainly not disappointed. It's unfortunate that people are trashing it, probably because today's uber imperial everything makes any traditional RIS pale in comparison. Not quite as thick or heavy as Founders, Siberian Night, or Expedition, but still quite tasty. I would buy it again, and am glad I bought 2 bottles before I read other peoples reviews.

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Photo of KellyBroussard
4.3/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Very tasty. Beautiful color. Nice head About full finger. Taste is crisp and full, lingers on the palate with slightly bitter aftertaste.
Very good value.

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Photo of joemcgrath27
4.29/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

50th review, hopefully I picked a good one!
A - a deep brown-black, short toffee head that didn't retain the best, but decent lacing
S - sweet chocolate, very nutty malt, hints of marshmallow and some smoke
T - roasty, nutty, and smokey up front, nice sweetness and mellow smooth chocolate, with the taste of roasted nuts, coffee beans, and just a little hops on the finish
M - a full mouth chewy smoothness, with just a little kick of hops and alcohol
D - very impressed, the flavour are so tasty, and the feel smooth enough that you wouldn't guess it is an imperial, although there is just a little kick to remind you. Well done!

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Photo of Pegasus
4.29/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Massive, dense, and lingering fine beaded tan head surmounts an obsidian body. Fine-beaded lacing utterly coats the glass walls.

Aroma: Cold coffee, bitter cocoa, dark roasted malt, slightly sweet alcohol, hints of vanilla and wood, and prominent herbal hops, pleasantly free of pine or grapefruit notes.

Taste: The taste opens with a wave of dark roasted malt. Soon after, bitter cocoa and cold coffee present. There is an undercurrent of wood as well, and occasional hints of vanilla. The very high ABV (9.9%) is quite well concealed, being all but absent from the taste, its carte de visite being a gradual and gracious warming sensation. Late in the taste, the bitter cacao and hops dominate, with the charred malt offering a flourish at the close of the taste.

Mouth feel: Soft, full and creamy, with delicate carbonation.

Drinkability/notes: Very pleasing on a cold winter's day, a day that beers like this were made for. Would serve as an elegant presentation with chocolate cheesecake.

Presentation: Packaged in a twenty-two ounce standard brown glass bomber with a pry-off crown, served in a New Belgium Brewing chalice.

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Photo of beveragebattle
4.29/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Round 1-Value

Lagunitas @ 4.49 with 9.9% ABV


Round 2-Aroma

Lagunitas: Smoky and roasted malts


Round 3-Flavor

Lagunitas: Caramel and black coffee


Round 4-Finish

Lagunitas: 0:45 seconds-1:00 minute


Round 5-Packaging

Lagunitas: Standard bottle (22 ounces) with a simple and clean “wanted poster” style label


Results

Lagunitas boasting a 9.9% ABV at under $5 is one of the best value dollar to ABV around. If you're looking for a solid Imperial Stout at an incredible price point look no further than Lagunitas Imperial Stout.

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Photo of Buschyfor3
4.28/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22oz bomber served in a standard pint glass

A: Dark and viscous pour produces an opaque body lurking beneath a mocha-colored dollop of froth; head recedes to a small collar, and sticky notches of lacing ensue.

S: Top notes of dark, bakers chocolate, roast coffee, toffee and dark fruit; as the nose warms, a leathery aroma peak through the sweeter chocolate/fruit combination - quite inviting.

T: Initial flavors shuffle between bittersweet chocolate, milk chocolate and roast coffee beans; perhaps a touch of vanilla rounds out the mocha-like qualities at the start that nicely balances sweetness against the bite from the roast; through the middle, the presence of dark fruit takes prominence, with a flash of booze-soaked/rum-raisin sweetness; that leathery presence on the nose appears late on, with a touch of earthiness/char that transitions into a finish showcasing a powdery cocoa which lingers after each sip.

M: Velvety smooth, good creamy quality; not approaching the same levels of thickness/chewiness as some other imperial stouts, but the body here feels appropriate for the flavor profile.

O: Lagunitas has crafted a quality imperial stout - and their handiwork is even more praiseworthy when you consider just how good of a stout this is for the value ($5.99/22oz). The alcohol is kept well in check, and the result is an imperial stout that drinks much more smoothly than its 9% ABV would suggest. Ticks all of the boxes for what you would expect from an imperial stout. Well worth it for any stout lover.

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Photo of pat61
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Pours brilliant deep dark brown to black under a very thin tan film.
S: Dark dried fruit, caramel, malt, fruit.
T: Has a big malty attack – primarily caramel with light chocolate - balanced by fruit, dried fruit, alcohol and hops.
F: Chewy, below average carbonation.
O: I have had this fresh and aged up to 3 years. The fresh has more clean malt flavors and dried fruit while as it ages it develops more sherry notes. Both are very good.

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Photo of Stoutastic
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%

Great punch in the mouth of flavor. Has strong chocolate hints. Love the thickness of this Stout. Perfect winter drink with its filling capabilities. Great beer for the price as well. Definitely drinking this on a regular basis.

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Photo of tt_andy
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Surprisingly this was a very good tasting beer.
I bought for under $5 and found it to be very good.
I'll hafta be on the lookout for it again. It's a keeper

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Photo of ThaneMcC
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

App - Pours a warm dark brown with brown head which resolves to fine brown lacing and minimal effervescent.
Smell – A medley of roasted malt, coffee, dark chocolate/carob and a good bit of leather.

Taste - A complex blend of sweet malt, bitter chocolate/cocoa, molasses a tad syrupy but not unpleasant. Definitely more sweet than other RIS, but quite enjoyable without being cloying or saccharine

Mouthfeel – Medium body (somewhere between 2% and whole milk), definitely better texture at slightly warmer temp.

Overall: Great beer for the style, sweeter than many but delicious. Make sure its not too cold otherwise you'll miss a lot of the flavors - I will definitely stock up on this beauty. Thanks Lagunitas for this 'Unlimited Release' !

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Photo of jopezu
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

pours a solid motor oil dark brown with a gigantic creamy head. nose; roasted malt, burnt wood, chocolate, & light hops. taste; roasted malt, earthy hops, milk chocolate, light char, slight coffee, & a touch of licorice/anise. medium+ carbonation & mouthfeel. a very simple and enjoyable ris. nice roast, sweets, & hops balance for the style. also, all lagunitas bombers seem to be priced at $3.99 everywhere in georgia - crazy value.

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Photo of Carolvs
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Great, hearty, thick stout that will spin your cranium at 9.9 abv. A bit on the sweet side, but I'm desperately searching for a flaw - awesome stout overall.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Not bottle date. Poured into a bruery tulip. Beer is black and dark. Forms a thin monolayer of tiny brown bubbles that leaves lacing on the glass.

Beer smells roasty and sweet with a hint of roast and other coffeeness to it. Nice.

Beer is medium in body and leads off with a strong sweetness that is followed by a growing and dark roast bitterness at the back of the mouth. Its coffee and mildly milk chocolate like. Its smooth in the palate and overall pretty good. Not sure what makes this an RIS but its a good imperial stout.

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Photo of PorterLambic
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very dark brownwith ruby red throughout, no light penetration. Smallish tan head, creamy looking. Good retention.
Smell notes of malt, coffee, peat, chocolate, light hops, wheat, smoke.
Taste is all that and oak, soy sauce and milk with a touch of sweetness. well balanced with a fruitcake note.
Smooth, creamy, very light effervescence, with the smooth, flowing character of a milk stout. Aftertaste is just a continuation of the taste. Nearly perfect.

A second bottle 5 months later came up nearly the same except for the mouthfeel. The body was weak and watery for an Imp. stout, more like a brown ale. I'm hoping this was an aberration but have knocked the mouthfeel score down from 5 to average the two scores.

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Photo of LovingCup
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%

Pours a little bit like motor oil with a decadent mahogany head. Got that big roasty and toasty smell. Smells more cocoa than espresso. You know its got all the signs going for it. Tastes rich and dark. bittersweet chocolate. caramel. maybe a touch of espresso. clean and creamy mouthfeel. touch of booze in a good way. Nothing crazy out of the box, just a well done imperial stout.
9.9% abv, $4 all day for a bomber? Sold! Perhaps I'm bumping my score up a bit because of this, but it's hard not to take into consideration.

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Photo of bgildea
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark brown/black color. Little tan head that fades quickly and leaves little lacing.

S: Nice sweet smell, that fades to an oaky like finish.

T: Tastes like it smells. The beer starts off with a sweet chocolate taste, then moves to a bitter roasted malts flavor and finishes with a smokey like oak flavor. Overall, I enjoyed the "movement" so to speak of the flavor.

M: Nice thick almost chocolate milk like texture. I was pleasantly surprised with the amount of chew to it.

D: The beer is definitly drinkable. The flavor definitly caries the beer. But I doubt I could put more than 2 of these down before I get anchored to my chair.

Overall: Overall I enjoyed the beer. I thought flavor was great with a nice balance of sweet to bitter. I would definitly recommend this to dark beer drinkers. It might be too heavy for some IPA lovers out there.

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Photo of PhillyB
4.24/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Got a bottle of this because it was three dollars. Money well spent!

Look: Black beer, no color around the edges. Head was bubbly and dissipated almost immediately.

Smell: Malt forward, with a little hop and dark fruit.

Taste: Chocolate, heavy cream, dark fruit, hop. Very tasty.

Feel: Silky smooth with an oily sensation throughout.

Overall: I was very impressed by this brew. A very heavy and dark beer that will definitely be seen again in my home throughout the winter season.

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Photo of paulthebeerguru
4.24/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: poured into a snifter. pours a rich deep brown with a fairly tan head, that dissipates rather quickly. Leads to spotty lacing, but it could be the glass.

S: deep hints of molasses and very sweet malts. Chocolate is all over this as well. aromas of hops are present. this beer has one hell of a nose.

T: very different flavors than I expected from the initial aromas. A lot of coffee in this mixed with a good chocolate flavor as well. hop are there, but masked which i enjoy, because it separates this from the majority of imperial stouts.

M: leaves the mouth feeling warm and places a ton of flavor on the sides and back of the palate. absolute delightful.

D: one a day would be an understatement from this beer. i manage a bar and i have drank at least four cases in the past 2-3 months(which lowered my paycheck, but it was well worth it). any beer, from lagunitas, is absolutely 100% phenomenal!

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Photo of Metalmonk
4.23/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Geez, with all the great names Lagunitas has come up with for some of their other beers (Little Sumpin' Sumpin', Brown Shugga, Hairy Eyeball) you'd think they could do better for their Imperial Stout than "Imperial Stout." But hey, what's in a name?

Love the bronze/gold hybrid color of the head, and it leaves a nice loopy trail of lace as it settles. Color is an opaque dark brown, as brown as it gets before going totally lights-out black.

Aroma is pleasing enough. Nothing too bold, but then the ABV is on the low end of the scale, for the style. There's a nice balance between roasted grain, dark fruit, coffee nuttiness and fresh cream. Even if the alcohol creeps in, with warming, I still wouldn't guess "RIS" when sniffing this, but it's nice.

No worries that this Imperial Stout won't deliver the flavor though. It's big and bold and full of much wonder. Dark chocolate, dark roast coffee, fig, plum, graham cracker, sweet cream, even a trace of marshmallow. Together with a great texture that balances gooey thickness with tingly effervescence--and having a buoyancy most stouts don't--I'd say this is not only flat-out delicious, but also: 1) a steal at $4.99 and 2) underrated.

Nope, despite the almost sensible ABV for an imperial stout, this is no impish stout. I should have never doubted Lagunitas, as they seem to excel when it comes to the big stuff.

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Lagunitas Imperial Stout from Lagunitas Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 655 ratings.