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Storm King Stout - Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

Not Rated.
Storm King StoutStorm King Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,599 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,599
Hads: 5,726
Avg: 4.1
pDev: 17.56%
Wants: 208
Gots: 821 | FT: 14
Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States | website

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout | 9.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-10-2001

Emerging from the deepest shades of darkness, a rolling crescendo of flavors burst forth from this robust stout. The thundering, hoppy appeal of Storm King subsides into the mellow subtleties of roasted malt, exhibiting an espresso-like depth of character in its finish. An exquisite blend of imported malts and whole flower American hops merge harmoniously in this complex ale. Discover the dark intrigue of Storm King, as it reveals the rich, substantial flavors that it holds within.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 2,599 | Hads: 5,726
Photo of bditty187
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Absolute blackness, there is no “hue” to it, opaque and dense. The brunette head reached a quick finger in height before shrinking to a loose soapy collar, which clung well. As I quaffed it slowly it laced decently. Magnificent looking, if for no other reason that the black body it possesses. A shallow whiff produced a pleasant roasted maltiness, I knew there had to be more, I went in for seconds, this time I noticed strong piney hops behind the malts. Imperial Stout no doubt, Americanized as well. The potency was strong enough to be tempting, so why wait to sip? The palate on Storm King surprised me, I wasn’t expected such a well-blended beverage. The roasted malts were far deeper and long lasted that I anticipated and when the hops were introduced to the tongue there wasn’t this epic battle for bragging right, but a sensuous dance that awoken my tastebuds. The roasted malts, with its own coffee-like bitterness, led the tango but the piney, bitter hops had its own moves. It was scrumptious and magical with an aftertaste of complex maltiness with a splash of hoppy bitterness that seamlessly allowed for a smidge of alcohol to round off the ale. I’ve witnessed Storm King reign on BA for over a year and now that I’ve finally tried it, thanks to sulldaddy, I understand why. The taste is aggressive and welcoming, powerful and yielding, stylish and blunt. I am impressed. Full bodied, thick in fact, with moderate carbonation. The mouthfeel is dead-on and truly lovely. I’m not gushing folks, this beer is awesome… and I hate every one of you who can drink this on a regular basis. No seriously, I do. It is going to be very difficult to cellar the other two bottles, thanks again sulldaddy you made my day!

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Photo of counselor
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was a beer I had been looking forward to and it lived up to my expectations. The bottle poured an an espresso coffee color with a nice sand colored head that thinned out quickly due to the ABV content. The nose was of chestnuts, coffe and aged cigar tobacco with a hint of alcohol on the back end. the beer tasted as deep and dangerous as it looked and smelled with rich raisiney flavors almost like a super mince meat pie. After swallowing though the hops came forth drying the mouth all around the gums, making me want for another sip; but first, the alcohol kicked in - just a little to remind me what a whopper of a beer I was drinking - and then just when I was ready to go back I am hit again with the the tobacco and roasted malt flavors.

When I finished the glass, I was happy that the beer lived up to my expectations and look forwrd ot the next bottle. I don't think I could throw back more than 2 of these at a sitting, but it was a blast to throw back after as a late nite reward for decorating the Christmas tree.

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Photo of rajendra82
4.38/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an inky dark black with brown highlights, with a khaki head that disappears pretty quickly. The remaining carbonation has a hard time working it's way through the syrupy thick body. The first whiff is that of dark chocolate, raisins, and licorice. Further sips reveal hop spiciness, burnt wood like maltyness, and medicinal tasting alcohol. Oily mouthfeel with slick molasses like consistency. Not as much roasted barley taste as I was expecting, but very smooth and relatively easy to drink for such a bold brew. The hight ABV is very deceptvely hidden under there. Thanks Weissenheimer for this wonderful trade.

This is my second bottle of this wonderful beer, which came as a part of the Secret Santa 2005 package from BA Riggsy. The first time I had it, it was an year old sixpack. This time it is fresh. Compared to the review of the aged bottle, this fresh sample poured a lot more foamy, and had a leafy hop presence that dwarfed eveything else. Felt more like I was drinking a union of a DIPA and an RIS. Teeth coating bitterness, over the top roastiness, and fantastic citric notes made this one of the most drinkable Impreial Stouts to have sampled. Oh how I wish I had more.


Sweetwater Happy Ending was released in 12 oz. bottles a little while back, and since Victory Storm King Stout of the same age just showed up in Georgia, I decided to do a side by side. I was expecting the Storm King Stout to easily surpass the Happy Ending, but I found the end products much closer than I initially anticipated. The Storm King was clearly the better looking beer of the two, as the head on it was larger, and the color was solid back when compared to the shades of brown in Happy Ending. The smell of the beers was different, but none was better than the other. The Happy Ending was sweet with a lot of chocolate notes, while the Storm King Stout was roasted and hoppy. The taste of the Happy Ending was sweet, soft, and full of chocolate, while the Storm King Stout was much more bittersweet, and had a citric tang of hops to it. Happy Ending didn't have the thickness in the mouth to justify a RIS style label, while Storm King Stout was just thick and creamy enough to squeak by. Both were easy enough top drink, but Storm King Stout was clearly the more complex beer of the two. I think a comparison of a few aged bottles is needed to see how things change over time.

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Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.95/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is motor oil black and poured with a brown persistent head that fell very slowly and laced the glass. The aromas are fruit, chocolate, coffee and hops. Dark roasted malt aromas lurk in the background. The flavor is bitter and hoppy. Some chocolate, some coffee, most flavors overshadowed by American hop bitterness and flavor. The finish is hoppy and coffee/chocolate. The body is good, but a little less than expected.

The flavor is hoppy, but not what I would call complex perhaps it was sampled too young. The bottle I have says bottled on 10/9/03 and 9.1% ABV.

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Photo of NearerMyBeerToMe
4.15/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours thick and gooey, completely opaque, black as india ink. Forms a dense, clumpy head with muddy-colored bubbles of varying size that almost seem to roil around, crackling audibly! Head dissipates slowly and clings well as it dries out into crusts of bubbles. Huge aroma: burnt malt and toffee up front, then BIG roasty bread crusts, smoldering wood. Waxing poetic: piles of autumn leaves and timber, huge dryness and dusty yeast, then a big, thumping belt of hops. Flavors everywhere: raisin skins, extremely bitter chocolate in front palate, and then... BIG bitter wall of hop flavor bowls through a wall of malt and mingles with tobacco, leather, peat. Even through a smooth, glowing alcohol finish, something of a plummy, curranty sweetness... Mouthfeel: did I mention that this beer is BIG? Slick, oily and with a stickiness that lasts for minutes. Alcohol warms and puckers inside of mouth with an astringent finish. This beer needs to be savored and digested. Let it slowly coat your insides. Perfect when matched with dark chocolate, nuts, and caramel. A rollicking bruiser of a beer.

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Photo of benmiliron
4.78/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Had it not been for this website, I might never have tried this stout. It's on one of the side shelves at my local beer vendor and I had to look to find it.

Cappucino colored head, very hop fragrant - lovely. Excellent mouthfeel, rolls over the tongue. Bitterness is balanced well by by sweet malt. 9.1 ABV not noticeable as expected, though I did start this one cold out of the fridge. American hops support the malt, but don't take a starring role (as it should be.) Opaque black, jet black. This heavy stout is not at all sticky. Drier as it warms, and more bitter.

This stout is nearly flawless. Well done victory!

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Photo of jahred
3.91/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was quite excited to try this after the excellent reviews... Pours incredibly, incredibly thick, with a very dark black color. Wow. My girlfriend, who doesn't drink beer, said "Holy crap, that's dark!" as I was pouring. That alone was impressive to me (hence the 5 for appearance).

A very thin, but pretty head, that soon disappeared for the most part, leaving a very nice lace on the glass.

Smells strongly of burnt malt and hops. Tastes of burnt wood and thick malt and hops, with a burnt malt/chalky aftertaste. I occasionally caught hints of chocolate and coffee, but not to the extent that I hoped for.

The alcohol was hidden quite well, so I decided to try another one. Maybe it was the hidden alcohol working its way thru my system, but I definitely enjoyed the second Storm King a bit more, and caught more of the chocolate/espresso flavors I was so hoping for.

Good, but not as fantastic as hyped.

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Photo of Rastacouere
4.32/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This pours black with a ruby reflect like a owl's pupil when he anticipates bleeding his prey. The head is tan, short-lasting. Aroma is deep spicy hops with obvious molasses notes as well as rich dark chocolate, this is gonna be good. Mouthfeel is very thick, oily yet velvety. This is one complex beer. Hops are prevalent and delicious, but there's a definite malty couterpart with peaks of chocolate, molasses, coffee and a perfectly balanced roastiness. The finish is hoppy and dry without being overpowered on the bitterness aspect. Big beer, fully deserved success and reputation, well-hidden alcohol. Worth the hype. Cheers Egajdzis!

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Photo of Hobbz
4.37/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Huge, thick aroma to match its thickness in the glass. The foam action formed from the pour quickly diminished but the appearance was superb for this imperial stout. The smell did not offer a big, robust burnt (roasted barley) smell, yet was a complex amalgam of sweet (malt & fruity like alcohol-marinated raisins), chocolate, hoppy alcohol. Taste also showed not immense roastiness, but rather more of a toasted malt background against the "imperial" sweetness, but with notable hop-bitterness too. A very warming glass full.

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Photo of ChrisBowers
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Wonder what everyone's talking about? Then go get one. Or ten. This is an amazing brew from the boys at Victory. Most recently had it on tap at their brew-house. Pours with a great caramel colored head and a nearly opaque body. Smells of chocolate, espresso... Taste is amazing for an american brewed beer of this high ABV. Alcohol is balanced beautifuly. There's just that hint at the end reminding you it is there. But it takes nothing away from the rich flavor of roasted hops, coffee and chocolate. Damn this is good stuff!

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Photo of 86MonteSS
4.6/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Of the imperial stouts I've had, this one's the hoppiest. I had this beer at my first genuine "beer tasting" and as such it's pretty hard to believe that I'm once again drinking one of the world's best brews as I write this. Storm King is a good God damn beer, but I don't believe it's the best Imperial out there. It's not at the very top of my list but it is pretty close.

Negativity aside, Storm King is easily one of the boldest beers I've had to date. It's definitely not for those who want a malty, mellow stout. The aftertaste fights like a branch davidian to stay in your mouth, while, to the tongue, it is bitter and tart in the greatest possible way. While Stone and Rasputin may surpass Storm King in the Imperial Stout arena, I'm just glad enough that I can get this stuff for a decent price whenever I want.

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Photo of marburg
4.62/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

How remarkable -- a beer that actually stands up to (and surpasses?) all the hype that it's afforded.

Aromatic complexities that boggle the mind. The musty comfort of a wet, day old sponge underlies dark chocolate, raisinets, and toasted crackers. A distinctly flame-kissed fragrance hints at the impending roasted bitterness.

And it arrives in glorious fashion. Heavy molasses cookies meets flambéed cascades. Finishes with a swirling roasted bitterness that leaves a lingering astringency reminiscent of chewing on wood and an aftertaste that just won't quit.

I could have had 3 of these. How is that possible?

So, so good.

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Photo of BierManVA
4.41/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled November 4th and sampled today, December 2nd, 2003.

Amazingly thick dark amber pour. Like syrup. The head is huge and sticky and sweet. Like something a candy maker would experience. A chocolate malt comes to mind.

The smell is likewise thick and chewy. Some alcohol content here but not overpowering. Again, more hints of chocolate.

Taste...Heavy chocolate with coffee malts. Quite desert-like. A bit of wood as well. Very nice.

This is an amazing bier. My head is swimming with ideas for deserts. I want to concentrate this and use it in a variety of tortes and cakes. Ice cream is also coming to mind here. Mmmm.


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Photo of clvand0
4.4/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This one pours a very dark color with a medium tan head that leaves some lacing on the glass. It is very thick during the pour. The aroma is of hops, roasted nuts, malts, chocolate, coffee - great aroma - very complex too. The flavor was extremely smooth conisidering the syrup-like pour. Very very smooth. Tasted of a mixture between dark chocolate and roasted malts with some hints of coffee, molasses. It's a little sweet with hints of alcohol as well and the flavor lingers for a while. Great beer here.

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Photo of oberon
4.1/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What a great find to see this on tap at the Spring House Drafting Room,pours a deep black with a light moch head that leaves some small traces of lace.Aroma is alcoholic and chocolaty with some burned fruit aromas,taste is of roasted malt and alcohol with some dark chocolate hints and even a little tar-like flavor as well.A real complex beer and way to easy to drink for the style I can see why the high marks are given.

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Photo of rdrummer
4.43/5  rDev +8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a truly black stout that is almost opaque. It is stunning in the glass. It has a brownish head that is long lasting with quite a bit of lacing. It has a wonderfully strong aroma of malt and a hint of chocolate. A very satisfying aroma to sit down with when there is little to do.

The taste is an outstandingly complex mix of maltiness, smokiness, hops, and fruits with a hint of chocolate as with the aroma. This is maybe the best stout outside of a brew pub that I've ever tasted.

It has a very heady, thick feeling in the mouth that leaves you with a malty feeling. There is a touch of bitterness right at the end that makes it finish more crisply. A thoroughly drinkable stout that is a classic of the genre. It packs an alcoholic punch that kicks in when finishing the beer.

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Photo of moulefrite
4.46/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A gosh darned, damn good beer! Pours jet black and features barely visible little white specks that are like little stars lighting the black night. The head is near perfect-espresso/cream color with the texture of marshmallow fluff! The nose is nice, with a major hop influence, as well as the usual suspects for the style ie. bitter chocolate,coffee etc. The flavor is amazing, and certainly attributed greatly to the skillfull use of hops. The taste is like a tootsie roll sauteed in pine needle oil, (if there is such a thing) or perhaps a chocolate flavored bud from Humbolt county.(not that that means any thing to any body) The mouthfeel is lush, creamy, and the finish is long and wonderfully bitter in a hoppy sort of way. Buy into the hype , and try this beer. Buy lots of it before it fades into non-existance for another year.

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Photo of Foxman
4.73/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is where light goes to die. None gets through. You know it's really dark brown, but the absence of light says, "It's black!"
Soft brown head, not terribly thick, and settles out relatively quickly, but it almost makes you want to pet it, it looks so lush at first.

The hops are there in the aroma, as are the slight coffee and fruits of the malt.

The first taste brings hops to bear, but stops well short of truly bitter, and swings gently into the cherry/coffee bitter-sweetness of the malt, with a trace of chocolate, lingering at the edges of the tongue at the finish, just enough bitterness to keep the balance ideal.

It has body to spare, just short of molasses. It almost seems to lubricate your mouth as it makes it's way stomachward.

You drink one, you want another. Drink another, you want yet one more; it draws you in, like a black hole, and you begin to stretch at the event horizon, time ceasing to matter, because as much as you want that third, or fourth, you have to know that the ABV is lurking at the center of that hole, and it will keep you inside for more hours than you can afford...but if one's demise can taste like this, is it really such a bad way to go?

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Photo of GeoffRizzo
4.92/5  rDev +20%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pitch black hue with a thin, well-retaining tan head. Hops, espresso, cherry and light alcohol rather inviting on the nose. Up front, a great velvet smoothness, a bit oily and at the same time dry; some dark chocolate, licorise and definitive hop presence noted in the body. Toasted malt combined with a slight citrus touch, warming detection noted towards the end. Robust, rich and tasty; incredible flavors, perfectly balanced, lives up to it's reputation as one of the best.

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Photo of crookedhalo
4.23/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Absotulety opaque ebony with a nice thick brown head that dissipated real quick. Subtle carbonation, but than again, those tiny bubbles have a lot of work to do to rise through thick thick brew. Grainy, roasty, and scorched organic goodness all come through in the nose. Surprisingly, I picked up on a fair amount of hops, too; something strange, though, maybe Challenger. Black strap molasses meets baker's chocolate with an extreme dosage of dark malts, mixed with a sweetness that plays on the tongue for minutes afterwards. Throw some quality espresso in there, too. I've had a fair share of Imperial Stouts in my day, and there are many variations on the style, but this one's been one of my favorites by a long shot and will be for years to come.

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Photo of Nytemare
4.38/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I promised Pezoids I'd get around to this, since he sent it to me. Had a few setbacks, but at last, I get to give it a whirl. Pours a very very dark brown, just a shade short of black, virtually impossible to get any light through. Nice tan head, with some lacing. Smells of hops, chocolate, roasted nuts, espresso. Nice hit of hops up front with a very roasted malty backbone. Bitter chocolate and espresso fill in nicely. Alcohol warms the body nicely, though it's hidden well in the flavor profile. You can definately feel it. Nice full bodied mouthfeel. Very rich and creamy. This is definately something that I am going to have to find, which means I'll probably have to mail order a case. This is yummy, seek and consume at will.

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Photo of putnam
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 14 days ago!
Nosefull of piney, resin-dipped tea bags on top of scorched caramel and great coffee. I think I understand what the brewmaster was trying to achieve...and he/she succeeded! (My 120-lb. wife liked it a lot.) Loaded with extract and perfumed with sticky, twiggy greens, there is still plenty of room for the kahlua liqueur flavors to stretch out. After each sip, there is a durable paint of bitter, brushed steel flavor that survives for minutes.
Serve with scorched nuts and cigars.

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Photo of Stopper
4.75/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This is black as night -- so opaque that I can't even catch highlights on the edges. The head is somewhat thin, dark tan, with hints of ruby, and sticky with a mix of large and small bubbles. A giant roasted espresso-like aroma billows from my glass, but doesn't quite mask the generous, remarkably-fresh hop nose. The mouthfeel is thick and smooth with a nice effervescence -- spectacularly creamy for a beer from a standard bottle. Initially, the taste feels surprisingly balanced toward a cistrusy hop bitterness, but this blends nicely into the malt creaminess. A pronounced dark-roasted malt bitterness then presents itself as a hop brightness shines through on the palate. It finishes not too dry in its this joined bitterness, trailing off with notes of espresso and very fresh citrusy hops.

I had this once before I started revewing beers and deliberately tasting. I didn't remember it being quite so exceptional. It's really amazing how such a bright, fresh hop quality is apparent throughout this big beer. The roast malts are very apparent, but blend well into the beer's gestalt and are not astringent or overly dry. To top it off, it's amazingly easy-drinking for such a huge and flavorful beer.

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Photo of NickLovesBeer
4.73/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Sampled on tap at Anam Cara with fellow BA Sakaroo

Storm King pours a pint black as night with a medium sized tan head, amazing retention and almost no carbonation. It looked extremly ominous and syrupy, one of my roommates refered to it as Guiness on steroids. Storm King smells of roasted espresso beans and unrefined chocolate. The taste: Think and creamy with the prevelent flavor of the espresson and a slight bitterness that finishes every sip. Overall the finest beer I have ever tasted.

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Photo of andyj
4.57/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The aroma of this one hit me right away. The bitter roasted smell was pleasure to my nostrils. The appearance is an opague black and the head has a dark-ish brownish sort of tinge to it. The taste is just amazing. Imperial Stout all the way. There is a hefty amount of sweetness to this beer, so it is by no means a dry stout. In fact I picked up an interesting hint of mint in the taste. Just a hint, by no means an overpowering flavor. My assumption is that this minty taste is derived from the use of black roasted barley of some variety -- the flavor being a wonderful hint of bitterness from a very dark or black malt. My biggest complaint about this beer is that it is hard to find where I live.

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Storm King Stout from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
92 out of 100 based on 2,599 ratings.