IStout - 8 Wired Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
IStoutIStout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

253 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 253
Reviews: 90
rAvg: 4.04
pDev: 10.15%
Wants: 18
Gots: 34 | FT: 3
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:
Beer added by: dgilks on 11-06-2010

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
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Ratings: 253 | Reviews: 90
Reviews by lehueve:
More User Reviews:
Photo of JohnnyBarman
4.28/5  rDev +5.9%
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.

Photo of BGDrock
4.02/5  rDev -0.5%
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

Photo of chinchill
3.83/5  rDev -5.2%
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.

Photo of biboergosum
3.82/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle. Not bad for a hotel room in Grande Prairie, AB - brought from Edmonton, natch.

This beer pours a solid black, with very slight basal cola highlights, with one skinny finger of glistening, somewhat foamy tan head, which sinks away rather quickly, leaving some random specks of lace around the glass.

It smells of lightly toasted caramel malt, strong dark, yet still sweet chocolate, earthy black licorice, a bit of leafy hops, and some simmering alcohol esters. The taste is gritty medium chocolate, dark roasted coffee beans, a bit of dried cherry, semi-sweet licorice, some mildly astringent earthy hops, and a fairly involved sharp booziness.

The carbonation is quite soft, and kind of lucid, the body a sturdy, bulging medium weight, and tacitly smooth, that swirling alcohol trying to poke holes in the whole affair. It finishes pretty sweet, with the chocolate and licorice notes still loud and proud, though well enough offset by the identity-challenged hops, and edginess of the straining likka.

Yes, this offering gives up a lot of heat, but it seems to be absorbed at damned near every point, letting attention more or less fall on the decent savoury chocolate, coffee, and anise essences. A strong, bristling, big-flavoured stout, recommended if that's your thing.

Photo of Sammy
4.03/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great stout. thick mouthfeel, bittersweet chocolate, complex hopping,well roasted, some smoke in finish. Opaque black. Its the taste, a little anise,bitter more than sweet.Somewhat Danish style.Very good drinkability.A bomber is not enough, go find some.

Photo of MrKennedy
2.59/5  rDev -35.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

500ml bottle purchased from Warners at the Bay and shared with mulder1010 with my portion poured into a Tripel Karmeliet tulip style glass.

Pours a nice black colour with a nice beige/tan head of foam that settles to film after a little while and re-emerges after some agitation.

Smell is very muted, some coffee coming through but that is about it. Was expecting a lot more from a 10.5% ABV stout and this didn't deliver.

Taste is dominated by a real over-charred malt flavour, burnt and not roasted this really detracts from the minor other flavours that could be there.

Mouthfeel again is dominated by the over-roasted malt that makes this very tough to finish half of a 500ml bottle. Too much in this regard and lacking balance.

Overall a beer that has over-charring as its main characteristic that serves to drown out all other flavours. Too simplistic, too dull otherwise and too dominated by burnt characters. Something that failed to live up to anywhere near the hype.

Photo of russpowell
3.95/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Took a chance & picked this up at Lukas in Kansas City...

Pours jet black with a finger of mocha head. Good head retention & lacing

S: Dark fruit, figs, & boozey carob

T: Figs, roasty grain, carob, some woody & leafy hops up front. More figs, a bit of black currant as this warms, some charred grain bitterness & a touch of cocoa, plus leafy hops & a bit of booze bite. Finishes with charred grain, carob, figs & a bit more booze bite

MF: Chewy, slight carbonation, thins out a touch as this warms

Like most Shelton Bros beers this is good, but bloody expensive. A good take on the style, the ABV is fairly well hidden. I do believe this would keep easily for 3-4 years as advertised...

Photo of Kegatron
4.17/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle into a tulip glass.

Pours a dense black in the glass, topped with a finger of dark & angry looking mocha head. This retains with some rich bunching around the edges of the glass and a robust flare-up that leaves back a thick cascade of spotty lacing and a brown oily film. The aroma smells of chocolate, a touch of molasses, and a whole lot of ripe dark fruit. This is rounded out on the edges by some slightly astringent feeling roasted coffee character, while the ABV really pulls the sweetness out here in the nose and singes the nose hairs with a bit of heat and spice about every other sniff of this.

The taste has more bitterness to it, with a lot of underlying green citrus and crunchy coffee that spreads out across the palate in a roasty bloom. This is buffered by a thick blanket of chocolate and caramel sweetness, with harbors a good bit of dark fruitiness in the center of it as well. The finish is dry and bitter with a bit of warming roasty feel to it. The mouthfeel is full bodied, with a thick mellow chewiness to the carbonation but does still lay down a bit of an underlying sharpness on the tongue at times as well, helping bring out those citric hops. That beefy 10-11% ABV is a big part of this beer, giving this a bold sweetness that carries a warm spiciness the whole way through the profile yet never gets overly hot feeling. The overall strength of this just seems right-on, being enough for the heavy flavors here but not going overboard with it.

This was a real nice example of a RIS, with a full richness to the flavors and a heady alcohol presence that complimented it well. At $15 a bottle, I’m not sure how often I would go back to this but it’s definitely comparable and easier to find than some of the other highly ranked examples of the style out there.

Photo of MenryAZ
4.12/5  rDev +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.

Photo of joemcgrath27
4.27/5  rDev +5.7%
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

Photo of CrazyDavros
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%

Pours black with a dark tan head.
Nose shows chocolate and bready malt, fairly sweet-smelling. Some booze underneath along with a hint of liquorice.
Big, roasty flavours. More liquorice and cocoa along with heaps of roasted malt. Some booze. Fairly sharp.

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.71/5  rDev -8.2%
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.

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.47/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured in to Duvel tulip.

A - Poured black with one finger of espresso coloured head.

S - Huge coffee and cocoa aromas up front compliment a big roasted malt profile. Lighter licorice and molasses aromas in the background. A nice sweetness in the overall nose is balanced by a hop presence.

T - A robust palate full of roasted malts, char, espresso, milk chocolate and licorice. Moderately hopped to balance out the malt sweetness. A warming alcohol throughout and a bitter, dry finish.

M - Medium to full body. Chewy and somewhat viscous. Light carbonation.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.45/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

huge thanks for the bottle. i was able to get most of the lineup locally, but needed to cross continent to nail this one!

deep dark, black liquid coming right out of the gate. Very dark, and completely opaque, there was no light getting through on this one at all. A nice three-inch high tan colored head then rose up out of the depths and reached out over the top of the glass.

rich and sweet, with the dark baker's chocolate coming through first. Nice sweet aroma that was then blended very well with the coffee like tones that were surrounding it. Very nice overall blend here, with a touch of bitterness in the back that could be picked up even in the aroma.The rich chocolate notes are coming through first, but have been supplanted in their strength by the coffee. It is a nice roasted, and sweet coffee flavor, without that biting bitterness you see sometimes. Nice touch of vanilla in there and maybe some molasses, definitely something sweet in it for sure. There was a nice overall profile though with loads of sweet flavor. The finish was strong with a touch of hops still left around to dry out the mouth enough to let the sweet profile come back around one last time.

Photo of mtomlins
4.21/5  rDev +4.2%
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.

Photo of largadeer
3.36/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Thanks to Jason for this delightful brew.

Looks black, topped by a small head that settles to a collar. The nose is OK; char and tar, some molasses sweetness, bit of brown sugar. Not particularly intense in any respect. Palate has anise, molasses, charred malt, heavy dark chocolate. Finishes with mild roast, tar, light tartness. An alright, somewhat bland but decently balanced beer. The body is pretty chewy, and it has no real flaws, but it's boring and lacks depth for a 10% brew.

Photo of metter98
3.93/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is jet black in color and poured with a quarter finger high dense mocha colored head that gradually died down but consistently left a thin head covering the surface.
S: There are aromas of roasted malts in the nose along with some hints of licorice.
T: The taste has flavors of bittersweet chocolate, roasted coffee beans and roasted malts in the nose.
M: It feels full-bodied and smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: Considering its strength, the alcohol is well hidden from the taste. Although this is still a beer that needs to be sipped, the overall taste lacks interesting complexities.

Photo of spicelab
4.25/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

With thanks to Chris@Slowbeer.

Pours black with a mocha head that takes a bit of coaxing to heave up to a centimetre or so. Falls to a film and slight curtain of sticky lace.

Nose shows equal measures of roast and sweet esters. There's brewed coffee, cocoa, banana skin, strawberries and cream lollies and a smattering of savoury crackers. Yum.

If the nose is a bit subtle, taste leaves nothing to the imagination. The aroma elements are cranked up and joined by liquorice bullets, dark palm sugar and bay leaves. The roastiness acts as a canvas that allows the sweet flavours to shine.

Full and viscous. Envelops the palate beautifully. Carbonation is just above low and pretty well spot-on for the style.

Very well executed and balanced stout that definitely tends towards the sweeter side. Just lacking in high-end complexity and wow-factor for me to rate this alongside the creme de la creme.

Photo of ThickNStout
3.45/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

500mL bottle from Hop City (Atlanta, GA). 10.49. No discernable bottling date. Served in a Terrapin snifter. 

Pours black with a dense three quarters finger tan head. Not much in the way of lacing. 

Smells earthy, roasty, sweet, coffee and cocoa. 

Taste is bitter dark coffee, cocoa, roast, char, cherry skins and leather. The whole time there's a hefty booze wallop. 

Moderate bodied with light carbonation. Slightly slick/ creamy. Long bitter coffee-like aftertaste. 

It's good but nothing special. I think it would get much better after 18-24 months but I'll be passing- there are far better options that cost less. Pretty good and worth a try, if not the price. 

Photo of eric5bellies
4.33/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Drank from my Duvel Tulip.

A - Pours a classic deep Ebony colour with a dark tanned head that retains well and laces.

S - Heaps of coffee and chocolate with some hop.

T - Heaps of Milk chocolate up front that lingers through some quite big expresso flavours. Nice balancing hop flavours compliment a very well hidden alcohol content.

M - Silky smooth, not full bodied and minimal carbonation.

O - This beer would be massive with some barrel ageing. Its a very good impy in its own right though.

Photo of joecast
4.58/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A gem of a beer this. Pitch black with a nice frothy brown head. Viscous but not overly so.
Hearty impy stout aroma. Meaning it's got heaps of the good stuff; chocolate, coffee and roasted barley.
Flavor is sensational. Has that great vinuous character I got from Sam Smiths IS but not quite as noticeable. In fact the other characteristics of the beer drowned it out until after the bottle was done. The main strength I get is the balance between the sweetness of the residual sugar and mouthfeel and the brashness of the alcohol and dark malts.
That completes my New Zealand six pack and I am blown away. Each one had it's own character, each one highly drinkable (well mostly - Rex), and all very well made.

Photo of beerdrifter
4.18/5  rDev +3.5%
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!

Photo of spinrsx
3.9/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

500ml Bottle from the Ottawa LCBO for $7

Appearance - Dark brown colour with an average size frothy head. I can't make out the amount of carbonation showing and there is some decent lacing. The head lasted for around 3-4 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, chocolate, grains, coffee, hops

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, chocolate, and coffee. There is also some hops and a touch of the fruity flavours found in a black IPA.

Overall - Interesting RIS, kind of borders the black IPA territory with all the hops going on. Another well crafted beer from this brewer, and something I'd buy again.

Photo of liamt07
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml shared by Jason, into a tulip.

Black with a light brown head. Light retention with little to no lace. Nose is big, got most of it coming straight out of the bottle. Syrupy, molasses, chocolate and subtle coffee notes. Quite sweet on the whole. Taste takes a different angle, with a lot more roast, dark chocolate and coffee - much less sweet and syrupy. Drying finish, with some hops in there. Medium body, smooth texture and easily consumable. Avoid being the overly sweet, cloying beer I had anticipated which was good.

Photo of Matonika
3.84/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The more this beer warmed up the Better it got.

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IStout from 8 Wired Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 253 ratings.