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Storm King Stout - Victory Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Storm King StoutStorm King Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

4,960 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,960
Reviews: 2,501
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 12.29%
Wants: 143
Gots: 449 | FT: 15
Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

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

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-10-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,960 | Reviews: 2,501 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of maddogruss
4.13/5  rDev +1.5%

Got a pint of this on cask at the brewery.

A: Pours a dark brown body with a thick, tan head with excellent retention and excellent lacing along the sides of the glass all the way to the finish.

S: A sweet, malt smell with some roasted notes and some alcoholic undertones.

T: A robust, roasted taste with a smooth and slightly earthy aftertaste. A hint of sweetness to it, but not much. A nice tasting beer.

M: A very smooth and full-bodied mouthfeel that was very good.

D: Definitely a very drinkable beer. Excellent combination of mouthfeel and taste. An excellent stout overall.

maddogruss, Oct 04, 2008
Photo of BamaBeerBuff
3.73/5  rDev -8.4%

A: It's black with some ruby on the edges. Head is stiff and rather sizable with a milk chocolate color. Some decent lacing, but the appearance isn't as great as some other beers in the style.

S: Honestly, I'm not that blown away. There's a good bit of dark chocolate mixed in with some hops, but I find the complexity and boldness a bit lacking. Still a decent aroma, but not what I'd expect from such a highly regarded RIS.

T&M: Rather hoppy in taste, as well. Hops mainly make their entrance in the latter part and finish, which I don't mind as much, but there's a real dearth of flavor in the front end of the beer. Some dark malt, but no real explosive flavor or complexity. Another let down. The body is rather full, but not as creamy, oily, and heavy as I'd expect.

D: Well, it goes down easy because of the lack of flavor. When I drink a Russian Imperial Stout, I want it to be big, bold, and something to sip on. This one is more like a "stout-plus" than a true RIS.

BamaBeerBuff, Oct 04, 2008
Photo of DeepSix
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%

Black. Poured with a dark brown head, about half finger thick. Not much lacing here.

The smell was the usual for Imperial Stouts coffee and chocolate malts.

The taste continues the same as the smell, sometimes these stouts all taste alike...I'll have to get a couple different bottles of em next to each other and drink them back to back to really be able to tell the difference. I'm not saying that's bad, I just wish I could say off the bat "that's this one!" But as of now I can't. But shit, they're all good. Thick in the mouth, with the taste of chocolate staying on the palate. The alcohol not so noticeable in here, surprising given the ABV.

Think, like most Imperial Stouts, I could only have one or two of these a night, really thick.

DeepSix, Oct 03, 2008
Photo of chuckd123
4.33/5  rDev +6.4%

Have now had 4 or 5 of these, all from 12oz bottles. Take em from the fridge, let warm up for maybe 10-15 mins and pour. It's all good from there.
Very dark black with a thick tan head. Nothing you wouldn't expect from this beer.
Smell... Some chocolate, a hint of coffee, and very faint burnt toast come to mind. Right on in terms of what you expect from this style.
Taste follows the smell -- all of the above aromas are present, and there is a nice alcohol warming as it goes down. Not outrageous and overpowering, but you are immediately aware you're drinking a big beer.
Mouthfeel is thick and creamy, definitely better as it warms up a bit.
Drinkability suffers in my opinion due to both the 9% abv, but also the relative thickness of the thing. Not surprising, and not the kind of brew you'll want to drink more than a couple or three of anyway.
Excellent imp stout, great job by Victory as always.

chuckd123, Oct 03, 2008
Photo of beachbum1975
4.15/5  rDev +2%

To celebrate the change of seasons (first day I wore a long sleeved shirt to work this summer/fall), I decided to try a big stout.

I tried this one on tap at Fox & the Hound a few months ago and really enjoyed it. I saw it in a single 12 ounce bottle format at Jungle Jim's, so I grabbed one. Bottle states "Enjoy by Feb 13 13", so I guess I am drinking a pretty fresh one. I left it outside my beer fridge to warm up for about 30 minuntess before cracking...

A: Pours the expected dark, rich brown almost black with a dark tan to almost true brown big, bubbling ½ inch head. I can't see anything but brown highlight around the edges of the glass when I study it under the light. Great big and thick lacing patches the walls of my pint glass as it settles.

S: The nose was a little lighter than I expected. Rather than a burst of aromas, I got mild-to-moderate hints of heavily roasted coffee and floral hops and maybe some caramel. Nonetheless, the aroma was very nice and inviting over.

T: Wow, now that's what I was expecting. What was mildly lacking in the nose came through on the mouth. A big, bold blast of carbonation and coffee hit my tongue following by smoke and heavily roasted malts. The drink finished with a pleasing bitterness (but not over-powering) provided from the floral hops. This one definitely hides the 9% ABV very well. No real taste of alcohol until the finishing of the pint.

M: Highly carbonated, medium bodied and full flavored.

Crap - if I had planned better, this beer would have been perfect outside with a fire in my chiminea!

beachbum1975, Oct 02, 2008
Photo of rabsten
4.78/5  rDev +17.4%

Sooo, last weekend I cracked open a cellared bottle and remembered just how great this beer was. Then, I'm in Fatheads and there it is on cask. Coincidence? Serendipity is more like it.

Dark black with two-fingers of dark brown head. Good head retention and lacing. Chocolate and toast aroma with subtle hoppiness. Perfectly balanced malt/bitter flavor with some mocha notes and slight fruitiness in background. Creamy mouthfeel with some small bite. Pleasant mild alcohol burn. Exceptionally drinkable. It was a shame I had to drive, otherwise I'd have had a couple more. Just a great beer.

rabsten, Oct 01, 2008
Photo of julian
3.88/5  rDev -4.7%

A: dark cola black with little light passing through. Semi-viscous in nature with a thick frothy mocha colored head from an aggressive pour. Abundant lacing all around.

S: Roasted smell of coffee. Aromas are somewhat subdued and hard to discern. I'm not getting much on the nose.

T&M: Good roasted taste. Chocolate up front. Some burnt flavors and a malty sweetness wrapped in coffee. Slight hop bitterness.

D: Pretty good. Not the most amazing RIS, but very worthy and drinkable.

julian, Sep 30, 2008
Photo of ncvbc
4.35/5  rDev +6.9%

A beautiful creamy tan head that fades very slowly to a ring, leaving sticky lacing that clings to the glass throughout. The nose is enormous on the hops, even up front. It masks the malt just a bit much but still adds another level to it. There is some chocolate and a dose of coffee along with the peppery citrus hop character. Taste is of bittersweet chocolate, cooca, a touch of toasted caramel and coffee. A light nutty flavor as well. All of this is complimented by a spicy hop character that adds a certain bitterness to the finish. Very nice. Extremely creamy mouthfeel that is silky as can be on the tongue and going down, despite the big hop presence which does give it a slight bittering dryness in the finish, also keeping the brew from being too full. I get hop burps like crazy from this brew. This is in the black IPA territory almost. Certainly not overwhelming in terms of hops but moreso than other RIS tend to have. It does detract a bit from how drinkable this one is. If there had been a bit more malt and a little less hop I'd boost it a notch. All in all, an interesting experience and I found some differences in this and the bottled version. The hops were definitely more raw and gritty here...I'm a hop head, though, so I won't complain.

ncvbc, Sep 29, 2008
Photo of hustlesworth
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%

07 vintage, just over a year old.

A- ominous and completely black, not even a glimmer of light passes through this thick stormy monster. thick creamy cappuccino colored foam bubbles eerily and refuses to budge. it creeps along like a puffy brown snail and the drippy lace it leaves behind ranges from delicate to downright plastery.

S- intense smokey, coffee, and dark berries, cocoa, and what seem to be cascade hops. sweet caramel and floral notes come out along with the bitter burnt aroma and creamy chocolate mousse. blackberry, blueberry, currant, milk chocolate, anise, mocha, pipe tobacco, charcoal, with an underlying confectionery sweetness.

T- massive on the palate, fuel and solvent give way to burnt grains and deeply roasted espresso. alcohol is persistent throughout. bitter cocoa and burnt grapefruit hops also play major roles, as this things seems to have 5 levels of bitterness. a subtle dark berry fruitiness holds on quietly to the coat tail of roasted burnt and toasty malt and alcohol esters. each swig nearly sends a shiver down my spine like taking a shot of espresso followed by a shot of vodka followed by a shot of hop oil. what a combo. beat that, jager bomb. some instances of licorice and tobacco here and there, but mostly like liquified burnt wood with an herbal extremely hoppy finish. and i mean that in a good way.

MF- thick and viscous, chewy, resinous, bold, and almost doubly imperial. goes down slick with carbonation on the low side.

D- borderline overwhelming, a good start or finish to a night of lower ABV stouts and perhaps some crazy irish rock.

hustlesworth, Sep 28, 2008
Photo of ClavisAurea
2.65/5  rDev -34.9%

12 oz bottle served in a pint glass.

Appearance: pourd black as night with a tan head

Smell: flowers and coffee

Taste: hops from hell, strong flowery flavor, bitter, like an old pot of coffee, full body

No doubt this is an imperial stout. Way too bitter to drink more than one at a time. Stout continues to be my weakest link.

ClavisAurea, Sep 28, 2008
Photo of gyllstromk
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%

I poured this into a Chimay goblet. The body was an opaque, jet black; conforming to the style. The head was nearly vacant but surprisingly light in color; this effect made a nice color contrast, forming a halo around the brim of the glass with little hurricane swirls in the middle.

I was surprised that the first smell from the bottle was hops. Later smells from the glass revealed the characteristic toasted malt flavors.

The taste is more toasted malt but very crisp and direct. Sourness is there, but I was pleasantly surprised by a hint of pine and a slight astringent bitterness; from smell to taste, hops played a great role here.

The finish is clean and smooth, without the typical stout thickness. I quite enjoyed it.

gyllstromk, Sep 26, 2008
Photo of 0110x011
3.83/5  rDev -5.9%

Pours pitch black with a one finger head that fades pretty quickly. Not much lacing to speak of. Chocolate, caramel, and earth on the nose. There's a bit of coffee in the flavor, with a touch of tobacco in there as well. Thinner than most impy stouts, but still quite rich. Slightly astringent, and a bit of alchohol burn.

A solid imperial stout. This would make a fine introduction to he style.

0110x011, Sep 26, 2008
Photo of Stonebreaker
3.48/5  rDev -14.5%

Appearance: Black? yes, of course.

Smell: Alcohol and prunes, figs perhaps and a little bit o' chocolate, though not as good as me old rasputin arrrrghh!

Taste & Mouthfeel: Thin for the style, with a wee bit of chocolate in the front and heavy on the burnt malt in the back end, mouthfeel is a little thin. The pruny sweetness has no chance, though at least the alcohol is muted. Overall a big dissapointment from those guys who make Prima.

Drinkability: Wack.

Stonebreaker, Sep 25, 2008
Photo of ffejherb
4.35/5  rDev +6.9%

On cask at Victory brewpub on 9/21/08.

A - Black body with chestnut highlights and two fingers of dense, creamy mocha-colored head that settled into a quarter inch of retention and left thick, ornate lacing all around the glass.

S - Dark roasted malt goodness abounds with some apparent chocolate/cocoa notes as well. Only a hint of alcohol at first, despite the high ABV. However, the alcohol really opens up as the liquid approached room temperature. Some earthy hops provide a nice contrast to the general sweetness of the aroma.

T - Dark bitter chocolate and earthy hops dominate the flavor profile in this RIS, with the dark roasted malt character also competing for the spotlight. A mild coffee aspect also emerges with a touch of black licorice to spice things up a bit. Finish is quite earthy and bitter.

M - Full bodied, rich and luscious texture that is extremely smooth and silky. Mouthfeel is absolutely heavenly. Finish is bold and bitter on the tongue. Outstanding mouthfeel!

D - Drinks like a champ for a RIS at almost 10% ABV! This sucker is big, bold and extremely flavorful. One of the best I've come across in my travels for sure.

ffejherb, Sep 22, 2008
Photo of rsyberg01
3.58/5  rDev -12%

S - 12 oz bottle, enjoy by mar. 6 2013

A - Pours black with the slightest touch of garnet, head is a light chocolate finger then reduced to a slightly patchy film on the surface. good.

S - cocoa, slight hint of iced coffee, slgithest hint of vanilla, porter-esque if you ask me. thats all I'm really getting out of the nose.

T - good chocolate notes, touch of coffee, drying tannic malt notes, tangy in a sense of the word...not really what I'm looking for in an RIS. good gentle heat.

M - This is where it lacks, ideally I was looking for more body. Overall it was too thin for me.

D - Because of the lack of body, I kick the drinkability up a notch, though with the 9% tag its difficult to judge. Ah the hell with it, give me another, its good enough.

edit: also, one thing I noticed is that after months of having this beer, there is nothing left in the bottom of the bottle after opening. Now I can only presume that there was no bottle conditioning. Makes no sense to me to not bottle condition a beer as big as this is supposed to be.

rsyberg01, Sep 22, 2008
Photo of DefenCorps
2.48/5  rDev -39.1%

12oz bottle best by Nov 16 2012, which would mean this is a little less than a year old. Into my snifter

A: Pours an inky black with a dark brown head that recedes fairly quickly to a wispy disk.

S: This smells nothing like the bottle and draft versions i had last winter (earlier vintages). This smells hot, solventy, sweet and a hint of the dreaded burnt tire aroma a la Mikkeller Black. Pretty disgusting, yeah. There's some chocolate but it isn't enough to mask this

T: Starts off with heavily burnt and roasted flavors with a ton of dark chocolate. Some fusels are present which really ruin things. Finish is long, bitter and burnt.

M: Rather full bodied, which is what i was hoping for, and the carbonation is light enough but god, this tastes nasty

D: Nope. Down the drain

Notes: When I did an RIS tasting in March, the 06 vintage finished 2nd or 3rd in a field of 9 commonly available RISs. This bottle would have finished dead last

DefenCorps, Sep 22, 2008
Photo of charlzm
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%

Consumed 09/20/08 at Beachwood BBQ, Seal Beach, CA.

Essentially black against the strongest light I could find in the establishment, this beer has a one-finger tan head that quickly disappears into nice lacing.

Aroma is boozy and marked by a sweet cherry character. Dark roasted malts present in nose as well.

Thick as it enters the mouth: just short of silky. Flavor is bitter, over-roasted malts with some sweetness for balance. Some coffee and chocolate notes. Fairly straightforward. Some alcohol character on finish.

This is a good, solid beer that does what it should for an RIS. No flaws, but nothing really exciting for the style here, either. The bottled version of this I had was superior.

charlzm, Sep 21, 2008
Photo of dyingwrist
3.68/5  rDev -9.6%

From a bottle into a pint glass. Nie and dark color that lets no light through. Small mocha colored head that dissipates quickly into an extremely thin layer on top. A good amount of nutty coffee on the nose. I expected it to be sweeter, but it drank like a black coffee. It has an interesting bitter note that some would not like. Feels like a stout should, but nothing that jumps out at me. Its carbonation is pretty mild. Leaves a nice fizzy feeling on the tongue.

dyingwrist, Sep 20, 2008
Photo of ThreeWiseMen
3.95/5  rDev -2.9%

I thank Aprilluvsbeer for this top 100.

Appearance: Pours a pitch black with super-creamy brown head that crawls up the sides of the glass before exhaling to a thin cap. Head clings to the sides of the glass throughout the session, dragging wispy, cobweb-like, lacing behind it.

Smell: Dark chocolate, sweet cream, caramel, oatmeal maybe?, vanilla, and some hop bitterness. A touch of alcohol at the end as well. Not overpowering, but surely inviting.

Taste: Semi-sweet chocolate and mocha are the first things that come to mind. Burnt malts, oak, vanilla, and charcoal with a good dosage of hops. First bottle tasted and smelled sweeter than the second.

Mouthfeel: Very milky feel with pretty high carbonation. Good amount of mouth-numbing going on. Full-bodied yet smooth, especially for an R.I.S. Wish the carbonation were a bit lower though.

Drinkability: A really smooth Russian Imperial with a nice (yet not outstanding flavor). This isn't my favorite R.I.S. by a long shot, however I would say that it's easier to drink than most beers of this style. We wisemen still have one bottle left and will adjust this review as necessary.

Nick: B+ (3.95)
Peter: C+ (3.25)

ThreeWiseMen, Sep 20, 2008
Photo of Rennpferd
3.65/5  rDev -10.3%

It poured pitch black with a lite head that turned into a lite lacing quickly.

It had a very smooth smell of roasted malt.

A slightly bitter hop flavor that was followed by a roasted malt flavor. It had a moderate alcohol tang finish. It had a lite body that was almost watery.

It's good, but not something that I could drink all night. The alcohol finish really just makes me want to swallow this down as fast as I can. I have tasted better.

Rennpferd, Sep 14, 2008
Photo of GlockAmore
4.38/5  rDev +7.6%

Pour from bottle into a pint glass reveals a black liquid with a generous two+ fingers of brown head. Aroma of coffee and dark chocolate. Taste is an uncommonly smooth balance of caramel, bitter chocolate, espresso, with a hint of vanilla and alcohol. Good heavy mouthfeel, as it should be for the style. All around, a great example of a Russian imperial stout. Note: This beer is temperature sensitive! Serve at the proper temperature to get the most out of it. If stored the refrigerator, let it warm at least 15 minutes before pouring. If you pour it into a pint glass and only get a half-finger of head, it's probably too cold.

GlockAmore, Sep 14, 2008
Photo of timmah427
3.93/5  rDev -3.4%

Pours dark black with a small coffee-colored head. Not a lot of nose on this one. hints of coffee and chocolate, with a bit of alcohol. Creamy mouthfeel. Taste is coffee, dark chocolate, and a bit of a dark, sweet fruit flavor with a lot of hop bitterness and some alcohol as it finishes. I was actually expecting more out of this one, but overall a very solid imp stout.

timmah427, Sep 13, 2008
Photo of timtim
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%

on cask at commonwealth in columbia heights, dc. fantastic. nose and very well balanced taste consist of all things imperial stout plus a heavy hop. dark fruits, dark sweets, dark chocolate, licorice, coffee and more. super velvety body and long finish. incredibly drinkable for such a high abv, and a perfect compliment to the stinky cheese, duck sausage and garlic sausage they served with it.

timtim, Sep 12, 2008
Photo of elniko
4/5  rDev -1.7%

Poured from bottle into pint glass.

A: Deep, dark coloring. Small level of head that dissipated but heavy lacing is evident.

S: Chocolate and coffee tones on the nose, little fainter than I would have expected however.

T & M: Creamy initial taste, followed by dry bitterness from the hops. Very nice representation of the style.

D: Highly drinkable, high ABV not apparent at all. One of the better RIS that I have had.

elniko, Sep 11, 2008
Photo of DontCallMeSurly
3.88/5  rDev -4.7%

First off, thanks go out to Brian (BrewerB) for hosting an LIF! Cheers!

This pours fairly thick, although for the style it seems less so but that could be my imagination. It pours completely dark, no light penetrates through whatsoever. Nice two inch head appears and retains quite nicely with decent lacing. Smell is pretty straight-forward; bitter roast and chocolate malt with some American hops are the dominant smells. Taste is much of the same although here the dominant flavor is the bitter dark chocolate. Mouthfeel is smooth, chewy and very creamy. Drinkability is pretty high.

DontCallMeSurly, Sep 09, 2008
Storm King Stout from Victory Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 4,960 ratings.