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IStout - 8 Wired Brewing Co.


Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

179 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 179
Reviews: 77
rAvg: 4.01
pDev: 10.97%

Brewed by:
8 Wired Brewing Co. visit their website
New Zealand (Aotearoa)

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Beware, this is a BIG beer. Brimming with luscious roasted coffee and chocolate malt flavours which are balanced by a brisk bitterness and bold freshness from the hops.

If you’re feeling politically incorrect try it with your favourite cigar, or a dram of your best single malt whisky. Or, if your tooth is sweeter, why not jump in at the deep end with the most decadent dessert of all; half a bottle in a glass with a generous scoop of vanilla ice cream on top (beer geeks like us know it as the Imperial Stout Float). Or simply enjoy it on its own as a decadent dessert or night cap - the perfect winter warmer!

If you don’t already know the history of Russian Imperial Stouts please check it out on the internet, it’s a good story. But remember, although based on that century-old classic style, this beer is a very modern interpretation, like all our beers!

70 IBU

(Beer added by: dgilks on 11-06-2010)
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Ratings: 179 | Reviews: 77 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of mtomlins

Ontario (Canada)

4.21/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a stemmed tulip glass.

Pours pick black and up to 2-3 fingers of creamy deep mocha head that settles slowly to a creamy collar with some lacing. There is a big nose of deep roasted malts, dark chocolate, burnt espresso and some hot alcohol. On the palate, it starts out sweet, almost milky, malt and then quickly transitions to dark roasted notes, heavy black roasted character (cocoa nibs and dark ground coffee). The finish is very long and dries out nicely and hides its high alcohol content well. The body is full with subtle carbonation leading to a silky, rich and creamy stout. Really, really well done.

Serving type: bottle

03-07-2014 20:00:24 | More by mtomlins
Photo of polloenfuego

Ontario (Canada)

4.05/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Quick review....

Pours nice and dark, little to no head but what there is is a brownish color. The smell is nice, coffee, roasted malts and some leather there too. The taste is quite nice coffee and roasts come through but the leather smell also translates to taste. That's not a bad thing, just interesting. The mouth feel is full bodied with moderate carbonation.

A pretty good beer...I enjoyed it and would consider having more for this brewer and even another of these if offered.

Serving type: bottle

01-17-2014 23:04:24 | More by polloenfuego
Photo of chinchill

South Carolina

3.83/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On tap at the fork & Brewer (Wellington).

Pour was opaque blaak with a durable tan head; very good lacing.

Aroma: Slightly boozy; oak; dark roasted grains

Flavor: a tad sweet; excellent barrel-aging effect; no burnt grain; semi-sweet chocolate.

Feel: full body; soft, well-set carbonation.

O: a very good RIS.

Serving type: on-tap

01-11-2014 02:59:30 | More by chinchill
Photo of mick303

Ontario (Canada)

4.11/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

8 wired iStout
Poured a thick black colour with a plentiful dark tan head, and impressive lacing. Good film and looks solid all round. 4.25
S – tons of bitter dark chocolate, coffee, huge roasty dark malts, alcoholic presence is apparent, spicy pepperiness and chili, strong coffee, intense, and bitter, but rpunded and complex. 4.25
T – thick syrupy chocolate, dark and bitter, espresso and coffee grounds, ending with a dry roasty grainy finish and coffee grounds. Lots of chocolate, highlighted with a touch of toffee, hops are there with a big earthy woody character. Very big and the alcohol presence creeps in a bit, adding some chili, overall very robust, and a pleasing spicy intense sipper. 4
M – syrupy, light carbonation, a huge thick body, very full feel. Slightly slick and oily oily finish. Dry and spicy end. 4
It was a very good but not great imperial stout. It does well at this strength but could be said at this strength the flavours are bound to be intense. This hasn’t hit a bourbon barrel but shows some interesting woody notes and phenolic spiciness along with a ton of coffee. This is in the middle ground between a blow away lower-ABV IS and a mindblowing +10% IS, which it falls short on complexity of, at this strength it does work well but doesn’t really deserve the next level of accolades. Certainly worth a try if you see it, lots of rich chocolate, coffee, spicy notes, balance is pretty spot on, an excellent stout. 4.25

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2013 17:49:09 | More by mick303
Photo of BGDrock

Ontario (Canada)

4.08/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: black, with mochachino head that fades fairly quickly to a thin film

Aroma: dark chocolate, burnt coffee beans, hint of campfire, cassis

Taste & Mouthfeel: like chocolate covered coffee nibs - intense and bitter, and pulling it off in a good way - not that puckering bitterness of bad espresso, it has a richness to it; slightly powdery texture of hot chocolate; alcohol well hidden, adding just a mild burn; over time the bitterness mellows and the dark rich notes of chocolate and coffee really shine; touch of spruce tips hint at hops

Overall: a powerful and well crafted stout - managing the bitterness of the roast well so the rich flavours can dominate, and the balance of hops s just right; not for the faint of heart

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2013 04:47:16 | More by BGDrock
Photo of biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

4.05/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

8 Wired i Stout is black as fire ash and concedes no highlights regardless of the angle to the light; it is a 'stout' in name as well as description. Its head has a deep tint but can't sustain itself and leaves not a single marking on the glass. What a shame.

Typically, stouts smell either like coffee or espresso - the distinction being the varying degree of intensity - but i Stout, however, has elements of both: caramel macchiato as well as Caffè Americano. Warmth reveals a high degree of milky lactose sweetness.

The flavour incorporates virtually every element one can expect in an RIS: black licorice, dried dark fruits, dark chocolate, black coffee as well as a vinous hoppiness. On some sips it tastes like a burnt brownie with a side of ouzo or sambuca - heavy and rich - while others its flavour resembles Cocoa Puffs, like a sweetened, chocolate and marshmallow children's cereal.

i Stout has considerable hoppiness - it may not boast of it in the aroma or even in the flavour, but the finish is dry and clipping, with a very herbal, bitter aftertaste and an astringent coffee-like roast (courtesy of the malts) that enhance it.

When the craft beer revolution started, the richest stouts belonged to the United States. Now that microbreweries have spread around the world, however, the title for biggest and boldest is up for grabs and New Zealand, via beers such as 8 Wired's i Stout, is making a strong claim.

Serving type: bottle

11-22-2013 04:30:33 | More by biegaman
Photo of MenryAZ


4.14/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I picked up a bottle of this a few months ago and just now poured it into a snifter. It's difficult to tell its age (though I found it sitting dustily on the shelf of a local bottle shop that's not always good at rotating product).

Appearance: Opaque with very little head. Blacker than it is brown. One of the darkest beers I've seen.

Smell: Not super fragrant, but hints of cocoa nibs and coffee.

Taste: Roasty, choclately up front with a surprisingly hoppy finish that reminds me of a black IPA. However, clearly a stout. It gets hoppier as I drink it, making it a rather unusual imperial stout and one that's rather enjoyable for its novelty.

Mouthfeel: Coats the tongue and is lighter in carbonation.

Overall: A unique imperial stout. Overall enjoyment was diminished a little because of unexpected hoppiness which, although I initially enjoyed, began to wear on the palate as I finished the beer. This is strange, as I consider myself a hop head. In general an interesting version of the style and one I'd like to try cellaring in the future. Worth picking up for sure.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2013 03:43:45 | More by MenryAZ
Photo of hopsolutely

Ontario (Canada)

3.91/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

LCBO procured bottle pours a surprisingly thin near-black with the minimal chocolate-coloured head disappearing quickly. Mouthfeel is also thin with some creaminess in the finish, the only negative comment I'd have towards this exceptionally tasty beer.

The aroma nails all that is good about an RIS - barrel tannins and roasted dark and chocolate malts. These all follow into the taste, which also offers coffee elements and a nice hop bitterness to meld with those chocolate tones. May not have enough "barrel" for everyone, but has an ideal level for my own personal taste. Although there is definitely some heat in the finish, it hides its 10% ABV scarily well.

A very well brewed RIS. As I don't see returning to New Zealand any time soon, will look forward to any future 8 Wired offerings in Ontario.

Serving type: bottle

11-02-2013 23:50:47 | More by hopsolutely
Photo of FanofHefe


4/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 pt. 9 oz. bottle poured into a Bells tulip. Deep, dark, black body with a small, dark head. Light amount of lacing. Looks foreboding.

Enjoyable aroma. Starts with chocolate blending with the roasted malt, giving a first impression of sweetness. Light hop notes finish the aroma and set up the tasting very well.

Not too sweet. That's always my worry with stouts. This one nails it. Just enough of the chocolate to make the roasted malt lose some bite. The clencher is the right blend of hops which this brew also nails.

Thick texture in the mouthfeel, but nearly no notice of the alcohol. My first beer from New Zealand and this one does not disappoint.

Serving type: bottle

10-27-2013 21:13:56 | More by FanofHefe
Photo of CAMRAhardliner

Ontario (Canada)

4.18/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours opaque black with just a tiny cherry glint at the bottom of the glass. The compact espresso colored head lasts a good while and coats the glass with lace. Fresh roasted coffee, field berries and chocolate in the nose. A tropical fruit hop character is the most interesting part of the taste. Decent amounts of roastyness mix with a restrained dark chocolate, cocoa character and a complimentary alcohol heat make up the rest of the taste, hops being in the background of the more traditional RIS fare. The mouthfeel is full bodied verging on viscous with a light, intricate carbonation level. Some moderate bitterness mixes with roastyness, a bit of booze and some fruity hop aromas in the long finish.

This is a great RIS showcasing some nice kiwi hops. Though by no means an especially hoppy RIS, it's balanced, nuanced and drinkable for 10% beer. Worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

10-09-2013 03:28:50 | More by CAMRAhardliner
Photo of Digimaika2

Ontario (Canada)

3.8/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

(4.25) A: Dark ruby tinged colour with a tall creamy and bubbly head. Very good retention and evident lacing.

(3.75) S: Caramel, plenty of dark chocolate, coffee bean, licorice, herbal elements, and some dark fruits. Slight boozy wooden aroma that is subtle and appealing. Good solid aroma that isn’t over the top.

(3.75) T: Dark chocolate, oak, caramel, licorice, herbal, and faint dark fruits. Alcohol well hidden considering the ABV. This is quite the well balanced stout with a very easy drinking (dangerously so) quality. A slight pleasant dryness in the finish.

(4.0) M: Full bodied with moderate carbonation. Incredibly creamy with a fairly oily texture (a nice trait).

(3.75) D: This is tasty, well balanced for an imperial stout, and deceptively easy drinking. A great Apple product, I mean 8 Wired offering.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2013 02:04:39 | More by Digimaika2
Photo of Phyl21ca

Quebec (Canada)

3.71/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a large dark brown foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of black chocolate with some light dry coffee notes is interesting. Taste is also dominated by black chocolate notes with dry roasted malt and light coffee with some dust and light smoky/tobacco notes. Body is full with medium carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Good drinkable stout without as much complexity as I was expecting.

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2013 19:56:34 | More by Phyl21ca
Photo of jrenihan

Ontario (Canada)

3.84/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled June 3, 2013

Beer is pitch black with a good-sized tan head, Fades steadily, a bit of lace.

Smell is a bit faint. Some coffee, chocolate and a bit of roasted malt. Coffee is the strongest scent, but nothing is too big.

Taste contains roasted malt, some molasses and chocolate. A touch of coffee and a small bit of dark fruit. Decent bitterness. Nice, but nothing remarkable.

Full bodied, moderate carbonation level. Feels a bit bubbly.

Overall, good but not anything special.

Serving type: bottle

09-27-2013 02:23:39 | More by jrenihan
Photo of JohnnyBarman

Ontario (Canada)

4.3/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

500mL bottle, part of the LCBO Fall release. I had a sample from a bottle of this recently and enjoyed it - glad to see some more 8 Wired stuff in Ontario.

Poured into a snifter. As jet black as the bottle's label would suggest, with a quarter inch of espresso mocha head, which forms a thick circle and leaves some lacing streaks.

Nose is quite nice, but as pleasant as it is, it isn't the brew's strong suit. Mild smokiness, licorice, roasted malts, caramel, coffee.

Very, very tasty stout, with loads of smokiness and a lovely toasted character. Espresso, dark chocolate, faint dark fruit, maybe a bit of peat. Far smokier than I remember, but still outstanding. Finishes with a puckery dry hop kick that is positively salivating - just makes me want to take another sip, despite the high ABV. A top class stout.

A bit hot, medium bodied, reasonably slick.

An outstanding stout - these New Zealanders know how to brew.

Serving type: bottle

09-24-2013 04:19:45 | More by JohnnyBarman
Photo of justintcoons


4.29/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

16.9oz bottle poured into a snifter.

Pitch black with 1 finger of dark brown head that dissipates quickly.

Toffee, caramel, charred sugar and semi-sweet chocolate.

Big rushes of caramel and candy sugars. Notes of toffee, semi-sweet chocolate and dusted cocoa. Finishes with cocoa nib and scorched dark chocolate. Touches of piney bitterness.

Full bodied, silky and smooth.

Really smooth and rich. Very easy drinking. The 10% abv is expertly hidden.

Serving type: bottle

09-09-2013 15:40:54 | More by justintcoons
Photo of beerdrifter


4.19/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Picked this up at a great little beer store in Arlon, Belgium, Miorge Mihoublon. Thick, pitch black pour with a caramel-colored half finger head with decent retention and nice lacing. Very rich and roasty nose with lots of cocoa and dark chocolate up front along with hints of licorice, toffee, and espresso. The taste follows suit with loads of roasty, bitter dark chocolate and mocha along with hints of espresso, tobacco, licorice, booze, molasses, figs, black cherries, and just a touch of vanilla. The mouth feel is thick as oil, chewy, and mouth-coating with some subtle sweetness and a nice bitter bite on the finish. Great balance and very drinkable for a 10% beer. Another excellent offering from New Zealand!

Serving type: bottle

06-27-2013 17:23:53 | More by beerdrifter
Photo of StJamesGate

New York

4.08/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Viscous black with tan film.
Ash, oily espresso, blackberry, and soy on the nose - thick and deep.
Treacle, fig, soil, and dark miso then cutting branchy hops.
Resiny, smoky end, black currant comeback, then rosin and tar linger.
Thick, oily, chewy.

Big! Amazing that a beer so *black* actually has so much depth - this is not just an overdose of patent malt. Pulls off both umami (lots of charred meat crust in there) and dark fruit. Definite hop presence, too.

A by-the-fire beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-28-2013 15:36:10 | More by StJamesGate
Photo of Cyberkedi


4.56/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Rich, nose-filling aroma is smoky and mouth-watering, having notes of licorice, roast malt, quality coffee and molasses with a hint of chocolate. It pours an opaque sable just a pixel or two above black and with a thick tan head. Smoky flavor has roast malt, semi-sweet chocolate, quality coffee and licorice tones with nutty, molasses and earthy hints. Absolutely lip smacking, leaving very little to be desired! Firm body is none too fizzy, but that is this brew’s weakest point - and it ain’t too weak. A must for stout fanatics.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2013 00:59:36 | More by Cyberkedi
Photo of viverlee


3.88/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Naptime beer. Biding time in the chill chest, you begin to wonder, “When am I going to drink it? It doesn’t go with the pizza I ordered. Or the burgers we’re having tomorrow. Should I just have it with dessert? As dessert?” No, it’s ideal not at any time, but at that key afternoon lull when an oily ten percenter is all that stands between you and some clean sheets.

STYLE: Russian Imperial Stout

ABV: 10%

LOOK: Panther black. Oily and pours like syrup, sleek to match the packaging. Soft, ginger head that doesn’t hold.

NOSE: Raisins, softer than expected. I can’t even say coffee because while I do get a hint I think it’s conditioning. “This is a classy Imperial Stout so there must be a coffee nose.” But no.

MOUTH: So very … Belgian? I’m somewhat unsurprised to learn that this New Zealand offering was crafted by a European. Bacon-wrapped dates, roasted coffee beans, malt chappiness (I thought I just invented that word, but Urban Dictionary not only says “no” but also “you’re an idiot, it means nearly the opposite – something disliked – of what you want it to mean – pleasant lipsmackingness). I don’t think the sweetness is chocolate. Rather something purple and fruity. It’s a nice departure from the usual humdrummery.

Beeradvocate Rating: 89

ratebeer Rating: 100

Hayward Abbey Rating: 89

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2013 22:02:47 | More by viverlee
Photo of joemcgrath27

Alberta (Canada)

4.29/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A - jet black, two fingers of tan head, respectable retention with plenty of lacing
S - semi sweet chocolate, burnt coffee beans, dark fruit and alcohol sweetness
T - starts with dark chocolate and candied cherry sweetness, light roast coffee, very mild piney hops
M - chew but lightened by the high ABV%, creamy smooth, roasty bitter finish
O - very tasty and extremely sneaky 10%, if you are a stout fan this could be sessionably dangerous

Serving type: bottle

01-19-2013 05:57:43 | More by joemcgrath27
Photo of LampertLand

British Columbia (Canada)

4.33/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

8 Wired "iStout" Russian Imperial Stout @ 10.0% , 500 ml bottle for $9 ,
A-pour is a dark mocha brown , with a small tan head that quickly dissapates leaving a small lace ring after every sip from the pint glass
S-old raspy new zealand style
T-crisp and clean tasting RIS , anise comes thru at the end , very smooth
MF-full bodied , tons of viscosity , taste the booze , warm feeling
Ov-very good beer , favourite of the RIS tasting , will earn a spot between HS-Megadestroyer & Pothole Filler

cheers LampertLand

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2012 07:56:51 | More by LampertLand
Photo of StonedTrippin


3.98/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

the pour is thick thick thick, super dark brown, syrupy, with a minimal mocha colored head that fades fast. coffee and dark chocolate dominate the nose. there isnt much acidity though, and the dark chocolate brings out a very dark malt profile. its like burnt toast with a cup of cold coffee, only in a good way. the taste is less coffee and more chocolate, but still a good helping of each. the alcohol notes really come out here, especially when it warms up, as does a sweetness akin to a milk stout, although this isnt one. that sugar lasts through the finish. theres a pretty heavy body on this, tons of viscosity, but there is decent carbonation too. overall maybe its a little heavy in feel, even for a russian imperial. either way, an excellent brew worthy of the high praise its starting to get here in the usa.

Serving type: bottle

10-15-2012 18:35:34 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of bennetj17


4.1/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle. Syrupy looking dark pour, very little head, with just a ring of tan foam lasting throughout. Not completely black as there is some light getting through about the edges. The nose is quite delectable with rich notes of roasted chocolate, and a firm and inviting booziness. Just what I expect for a true Russian Imperial, well done.

The taste is quite subtle to begin with, displaying a dry roastiness that creeps in and builds toward the finish. I'm suprised how mellow this actually is. Not overly complex, but with some burnt chocolate notes and a fine bitterness at the back, there is enough here to savor. The alcohol is slightly warming but otherwise kept well in check. The mouthfeel is decently thick, with an appropriate level of carbonation for style.

Overall this is a fine Imperial Stout to enjoy. Unfortunately it lacked a bit of intensity for what it could be, and that probably hurts the aging potential as it is already fairly relaxed. I'm glad to try it but considering the $10 price tag and this isn't even a 750ml I won't likely buy this again.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2012 05:33:31 | More by bennetj17
Photo of yemenmocha


4.13/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a sexy black with dark brown head. Nose is quite roasty with a big nougat aroma that I liked a lot - reminds me of Three Musketeers candy bar. Nice medium body, rich dark chocolate and roasty flavors meld with some hop bitterness to make for a very bold but drinkable imperial stout. The abv is exceptionally concealed for this one. Only negative is the price tag.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2012 02:35:19 | More by yemenmocha
Photo of outdoor7or24


3.88/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got my 32oz growler filled today at 5 points growlers in Athens, GA, $21

A: poured into sniffer, pours dirty motor oil black, it shines to me in the light, light brown foam head that quickly fades out and just stays around the perimeter to the finish, some lacing, love the look on this brew.

S: the aroma is dark baker's chocolate, coffee, anise, vanilla, molasses, and some boozy aroma at the end.

T: yes, rich and dark, the taste is similar to the aroma, dark baker's chocolate that is bitter (duh, of course), anise, molasses, coffee, and some bitterness towards the end that leaves your mouth watering along with the booze hit (abv 10%)

M: smooth up front, surprisingly medium body as I would have thought this would be more on the thick side, carbonation, kinda oily and coats the tongue

O: This is one RIS you should try, good version that is a little more on the bitter side than others I have had.

Serving type: growler

09-29-2012 01:51:31 | More by outdoor7or24
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IStout from 8 Wired Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 179 ratings.