1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Storm King Stout - Victory Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Storm King StoutStorm King Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

5,229 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,229
Reviews: 2,519
rAvg: 4.07
pDev: 12.29%
Wants: 158
Gots: 534 | FT: 18
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
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Storm King Stout Alström Bros
Ratings: 5,229 | Reviews: 2,519 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bitterdestroyer
3.83/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

now i'm not a huge stout guy. i mean don't get me wrong, in the great scheme of things beer is beer and all beer is good, i'm just not a big stout drinker. but i will say that this one has got me hooked. wow what a pleasant surprise to a beer drinker whose familiarity with stouts is guiness and smithwick's...

appearance: holy crow is this thing dark... reminded me of black water. nice head. no lacing that i could see.

smell: bitter hops and chocolate, slight tinge of booze, and malt.

taste: pretty close to the smell. malty, bitter and chocolatey. very tasty though.

mouthfeel: to me it was similar to a lightly carbonated chocolate milk. very thick, yet silky.

drinkability: as much as i wanted another, i decided against it. that 9% abv goes down so smooth it's frightening.

Photo of KarlHungus
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This brew pours an opaque black color with a large, rocky, tan head that seemingly lasts forever. The aroma is of cream, and crackers with undercurrents of roasted malt and bitterness. It is rather weak, however, for suck a big brew. The taste lives up to expectations. It is big and bold, but not abrasive. It is malty and bitter, with a nice alcoholic aftertaste. The mouthfeel is exceptionally smooth and creamy, with perfect carbonation. I get the felling that Victory cellared this brew for quite some time before releasing it. Overall, this is a damn fine beer, one of the best imperial stouts I have had to date.

Photo of SteveO1231
4.75/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Grabbed a sixer from BevMo!

Pours an opaque jet black whit an impressively thick foamy dark tan head. Nice little cascading bubbles floating to the surface of this brew leaving a nice rim of tan creamy lacing.

Awesome roasted caramel and chocolate aroma. I can smell the alcohol in this bad boy.

Very good roasty toasty flavor of caramel, chocolate, and toffee with a dry bitter, black coffee finish. This beer is very balanced and delicious. I'm half way through this bottle and I am feeling warm from the ABV.

I'll grab another 6er because this one won't last very long.


Photo of isubsmith
4.63/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Apperance: Exceptionally dark and black. Brown, thick foamy head.

Aroma: Bitter hops, bittersweet chocolate.Roasty smells

Mouthfeel/Taste: Thick and creamy. Very full bodied. Minimum carbonation. Heavy roasted bitter taste followed by lots of hops. Coffee notes. Finish is hoppy bitterness all over again.

Drinkability: I find this to be quite drinkable. The 9+%ABV is well hidden under the intense roast flavors. One of my favorite stouts.

Photo of burnstar
4.43/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours black as night and absolutely entirely opaque with a one finger tan head that settles to some very nice lacing. Aroma is of espresso, toasted malt, and flowery hops. The flavor has a strong toasted malt backbone which is simultaneously sweet, bitter, and quite complex with espresso and chocolate flavors. Also there are plenty of citrusy hops which I like quite a bit in this brew. This beer is very full bodied and coats the mouth very nicely. Pretty drinkable and the alcohol is not really evident at all. Overall this is an awesome and tremendous beer- worthy of great respect. Drinking it from my goblet I feel like the storm king himself.

Photo of akahn
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown-red with a short light brown head. The head recedes to a collar. Looks good, not great.

Smell of dark maltiness, plus some funky hops.

Simultaneously sweet and bitter. Rich. Very dark tasting, thick, malty, sticky (not quite cloying), with toasted malt flavors. Take the time to let this beer warm up, and out come the mocha flavors.

In the finish, there is a lingering dryness at the back of my tongue, I like.

This beer hides its 9.1% alcohol very well. It tastes strong but not from the alcohol.

Full bodied, moderate carbonation and exceptionally drinkable for how full it is. This is one good beer. The only other beer I've had of this style is Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout, and I definitely prefer Storm King.

Photo of thetachibro
4.28/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pours a dark opaque black with a 1in tan froathy head...the aroma isn't too potent which suprises me because there are a lot of charactestics in this beer....but what is there is some citrus hops, of the course the malts, and that's mostly it...the taste on the other hand is a nice blend of hops and malts somewhat sweet and little carbinations...very nice in the mouth and on the palate can definatley drink a couple and enjoy them

Photo of SacoDeToro
4.35/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a deep black with a minimal tan head that dissipated quickly. The aroma was heavy on the dark malt and alcohol with hops in the background. The flavor was bold and roasty, but relatively dry for this style - malty, yes, but not on the sweet side compared to many Russian imperial stouts like North Coast's Rasputin and Avery's The Czar. Maybe that's why it's been categorized in the "American Double Stout" category. It really doesn't have that British yeastiness that many Russian imperial stouts have. Although the hops are somewhat there in the aroma, they really dominate in the finish. This is an intense beer, but if you like "mad flava," it's one for you. Think of it as analagous to an American Double IPA.

Photo of ViveLaChouffe
4.55/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an opaque dark brown with a mocha colored 1/4 inch frothy head. Some fine lacing. Smells of rich roasted barley and definitely some alcohol in the nose.

Taste just explodes on the tongue. Roasted malt, smoky. Bitter coffee underpinned with light cigar smoke. Some alcohol warming and lightly chocolately. Mouth is rich, long bitter smokiness int he finish. A definite coffee aftertaste. Really good stuff. A nice afterdinner sipper. I like my stouts to have that roasty bittereness to them and this one delivers as a nice counterbalance to the sweetness.

Photo of JerzDevl2000
4.28/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Heard a lot of good things about this beer, and I tend to like Victory's offerings. Bought this last week with a lot of anticipation in mind, and for me...this was quite interesting, to say the least!

Beer poured amazingly well. Nice and dark, smooth, and over two finger's worth of head. It nearly overflowed from my pint glass! The lacing on the side is reminiscent of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale and every sip got better and better as it warmed up. Lots of hop bitterness, but there isn't a single flavor that dominates. Notes of espresso, chocolate, currant, cherries, and licorice can be found here, and contrary to what some people said on here, the 9.1% ABV can very subtly be tasted, but it does not detract from the flavor or the overall ambiance of this brew.

This was a good beer, but I have had, in my opinion, better stouts. Still, one could not go wrong drinking what is arguably Victory's greatest concoction, although I would not recommend this as an introductory stout. Instead, I would warm people up on less complex versions of this style and then bring them to this. It would be well worth the wait and quite the reward for the experienced stout drinker...

Photo of jasonpeckins32
4.58/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours black as night, with an enormous, thick, brown layer of foam. Quite possibly one of the best looking beers I've ever poured. The tan bubbles of carbonation look magnificent rising along the sides of the glass.

Aroma is of sweet roasted malts and subtle hops. A touch of bittersweet chocolate and coffee top it off.

The flavor is much more complex than the nose leads on. It has all the characteristics of the smell, along with honey, espresso, nuts, black licorice, and maybe a touch of cherries or other fruits in the finish. Very nicely balanced beer. No single flavor jumps out and dominates the beer, which I feel happens all too often.

The mouthfeel is terrifficly full and heavy-bodied with supreme smoothness for its style and high abv. Very smooth.

Drinkability is great. It would be real easy to down these in a hurry without noticing its high alcohol content. Very nice beer. I really cant say enough good things about it. Just try it!

Photo of gotbeer
4.2/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Finally getting around to reviewing this one. The bottle reviewed was brewed in Nov. 2005.

My favorite memory of this brew was truly historical. I was drinking Storm King on the night of a full moon when the Red Sox ended an 86 year old curse. I literally had one in my hand when Keith Foulke flipped the ball to Doug M. for the final out in Game 4 versus the Cards. I now believe this beer to have some sort of special powers as drinking a lesser brew probably would have allowed the Sox to have a historical collapse.

Anyway, the smell of this beer is not overwhelming. It doesn't set you up for what you are in for. Some roasty malt smell and that's about it. The beer pours black as night with a dark colored head that fades somewhat quickly.

The taste blows you away. The mouthfeel is thick and syrup like. Cherries, coffee, roasted malt, and a bite of hops and alcohol on the tail. Incredible complexity and flavors.

The drinkablity would be high based simply on taste. Of course if you can put away a few of a beer with this ABV you have a higher tolerance than I want to know about.

This is truly a world class beer, and one of the best stouts out there. I also believe it helped the Sox win the World Series. Cubs fans everywhere should be buying this stuff by the case.

Photo of kaimcm
4.35/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

05 bottle

A: totally opaque black body, bubbly creamy off white head with a tinge of brown mustard sorta yellow.

S: easily the weak point of this beer. roasty toasty malt, a hint of coffee, a little sweet. not much going on in the nose.

T: Sugar, licorice, with a dry and hoppy finish. Roasted malt body holds up chocolate, coffee, what I think is vanilla, some dark fruit thats reminiscent of a beglain strong dark. Body is medium, finish is dry with traces of tobacco.

M: Super creamy and luscious. This beer is like a melted malted milkshake in your mouth. Just delicious and one of my favorite aspects.

D: A nightcap sorta brew for me, though not as thick and heavy as other imperials. Great to have in the fridge and enjoy on these snowy New England nights.

First big snow storm of the season this year, first bottle of Storm King of the season. Great match!

Photo of andjusticeforale
4.08/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

An IPA masquerading as a stout; a stout as an IPA? This beer both amazed and disappointed me. The smell was quite herbal, a cross between raw cookie dough and wood stain, the first sips were undrinkably thru the roof hoppy.The mellowing came and the consistency turned into sweet grape soda. Then it taste like drinking coffee out of an oak cup.

I am not knocking this beer by rating it just around four- but the hops are just too damn much for what I consider a stout. Even a double american stout; not that i wouldn't enjoy throwing a few of these back now and then. Cheers.

Photo of HogHill
4.05/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Purchased as a single from Colonial. Poured into a Stone Russian Imperial stout glass.

Appearnce: dark brown, not quite black. A short tan head is reduced to lace in moments.

Aroma: roasted malts, a burntness as well coupled with some chocolate.

Taste: Very malty, definitely has that burnt roasty flavor. Feels substantial to the palette, low carbonation. It has a significant bitterness on the finish.

Drinkability: A very good Imp. stout to sip and enjoy over some time, let this one warm up too.

Photo of brentk56
4.45/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Muddy brown body with a tan head and a blanket of lacing

Smell: Both the roasted malt and fruity hops are present on the nose

Taste: Rich and malty dark chocolate flavor with the fruity hops making an early appearance and building through to the finish

Mouthfeel: Heavy bodied with plenty of alcohol

Drinkability: Massively complex and very well-balanced

Photo of RedwoodGeorge
3.58/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a thick black with a reasonable dirty tan head. The foam breaks down very quickly and leaves no collar or lacing on the glass.

The nose is quite nice - some very deep roasted grains with just a touch of toffee and vanilla. Perhaps a suggestion of hops but nothing prominent in the nose. There are, however, hops in the flavor. Still in the background but some reasonably aggressive bitter resinous notes that help dry out the stout nicely. Primary flavors are roasted coffee notes just this side of burnt toast with no hints of sweetness or chocolate to be found. I trust the label when they say there's 9.1 % ABV in there but no sweet alcohol flavors and no burn at all. (Plenty of evidence when I stand up though!)

Mouthfeel is good. Surprisingly light bodied with minimal carbonation - where the bubbles might clear the palate the job is instead left to the bitter malts and the noticable hop character. No oily residue and a pleasantly clean, dry finish.

Overall rather disappointing. Even if I disregard the high esteem this beer is held in I'd have only rated it a middling Imperial Stout. It's okay for a dry stout but frankly Black Hart has a much more interesting, aggressive hop profile. It doesn't compare well to the sweeter Imperials (Rasputin, Black Bear, Fat Dog, Yeti) so that just leaves a good but unexciting stout.

Photo of nortmand
4.8/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours black, with some white head. Very, very black.

Some roast notes, supported by a nice chocolatey yaest presence.

Huge roast flavor all around. Sweet chocolate till the bitter end.

Full bodied and smooth, this makes for a huge, delicious drinking beer. Another winner from Victory.

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

I had this on tap today right form the source, sitting at Victory's Brewpub, and it was fantastic.
When the waitress brought it to the table it looked jet-black. Tipping the beer in the glass is the only way to make it look any less then midnight black. It is completely opaque. Absolutely no light getting through this beer. I did not get to see the head on it this time because (as I said) I was waiting on a waitress and by the time it got to me the head was gone. However I have had this beer a number of times and as I recall there is usually a moderate head.

The aroma is not at all an overpowering one (a bit subtle for a Stout) but there is a noticeable bitterness combined with the sent of coffee makes me want to have this with my breakfast. After the coffee aroma I get a bit of chocolate and dark fruit buried in a bit of alcohol dangling in my nose.

Instantly I think of classic roast coffee, followed quickly by a thought of black espresso as I swallow. (it must be the semi-bitter) Then I notice the chocolate, but not a sweet chocolate taste maybe more of a dark semi-bitter chocolate. It is hard to describe this flavor. It does give you a lot to think about, yet it is easy drinking. For a Stout, this is not an overly sweet beer. It has just the right amount of hops and bitter to be able to notice them but not to be overwhelmed by it either. I really enjoy this taste.

The mouthfeel is full; very full, but not heavy and chewy. The carbonation is just enough to lighten the dark thick flavor and leave you with a very pleasant feeling on your tongue.

DANGEROUS! For a Stout this does go down remarkably easily. I have taken a Growler home and ... well I'll just say I got hurt! ;) So be careful. You do NOT feel the 9.1% ABV until ... later. After a few of these though, it does start to sit heavy in your stomach so don't plan on it for all night drinking. Enjoy!

Hope this is helpful.

BTW {additional notes: This is a beer that is definitely best on tap or growler. The bottles for some reason seem to have a little less of the same smooth creamy feel as it does on-tap. Also, although it is the same beer, it seems to have a stronger hop characteristic in the bottle. Point, I recommend visiting Victory if you get the chance.}

Photo of ElGordo
4.4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pitch black hue topped by a good two fingers of creamy brown head that sticks around for a while. Aroma is primarily of piney, spicy hops, with undertones of rich chocolate malt and a whiff of alcohol. Some notes of hearty bread and mocha are also to be found. Palate is rich, complex, and well-balanced between the boatloads of spicy aromatic hops and the rich, assertive chocolate malt. A slightly sweet biscuit character emerges right up front, but fades quickly. Notes of coffee and dried plums linger on the finish. Body is rich and creamy, yet leaves a relatively dry finish. One of the best American stouts I've tasted.

Photo of VoodooBrew
4.72/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I found this in the beer store by my parents' house in Maryland. I like Victory so I had to snatch it up.

I'd say the most pleasant aspect of this beer is its big hop character. In most cases it seems that your Double/Imperial Stouts feature huge malt and alcohol that totally dwarf their hop profiles. Well Victory found a way to showcase all three without the beer falling out of balance. As a hop lover, I was most pleasantly surprised by this. Furthermore, I found Storm King to be much more drinkable than many of its peers. Lots of beers in this style have so much (dark) malt that they coat your palate and are hard to enjoy more than one or two at a time. I won't say that Storm King had a thin mouthfeel by any means, but for a Double Stout, it comes darn close to being downright refreshing.

BA indicates this is a top 5 beer. I'm not quite sure where it fits in the global echelon but this is a very very very excellent beer and to date probably the best Big Stout I've had.

Photo of Zorro
4.8/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This sample was bottled Sep 27, 2005 and sampled at cellar temperature.

Pours a jet black beer with a TALL brown head that almost overflows the glass.

Smell is a little sweet with a powerful load of hops that would do a hardcore Double IPA justice, but this isn't any IPA. Notable alcohol vapors accentuate the spicy smell of the hops, only lack of complexity keep this from getting a 5. Lesser scents of coffee and chocolate sneak past the hops but this is a hop heavy beer.

Taste is thick creamy chocolate and coffee with a vanilla aftertaste to begin with. Sour and bitter flavors develop next mostly from the dark roasted malts, but the oak aftertaste is all from hops. Pleasant stomach warming appears rather quickly just to let you know this is stronger than it tastes, alcohol is completely hidden in the flavor. The sour flavors soon develop in to the sour wine like snap you get from a good Latin American coffee served black. This is quite an interesting stout emphasizing a different take on the style; tart black coffee not roasted to death in the Italian style. This is more like a pre-yuppie cup of black coffee with no pretensions on being European this or that; this is American.

Mouthfeel is good, but not thick.

Quite a drinkable strong beer here. I do recommend this to anyone who likes stouts, as this is both good and unique.
I suggest that you try this instead of a cup of coffee some morning when you don't have to travel anywhere.

Photo of Winter
4.63/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Review #400.

Victory has come to Wisconsin and the arrival of Storm King was the one from the line that I was looking forward to finding most and finally being able to try. I had already sampled Hop Devil, Golden Monkey and Old Horizonal after finding them in Chicago a few years ago, but it was Storm King that elluded me until now.

A thick brown head sits atop a body that's as black as a moonless, starless night sky. Aroma of expresso, cream, sweet cocoa with hints of dark fruit and alcohol. The mouthfeel is full-bodied and luscious. Introductory flavors of sinful dark chocolate and burnt malt. Expresso coffee and cocoa follow. Assertive (but balanced) hop bitterness towards the back sets this apart from most other Imperial stouts. The 9.1% alcohol is barely detectable which makes this an even more dubious offering. One of the best, for certain.

Photo of silver0rlead
4.5/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is definately a long-awaited beer, bottled on 10/31/05: Pours a completely opaque black (almost like a black hole) with a moderate tan head that retains well for a nearly 10% brew. The aroma has big expresso notes, dark unsweetened chocolate, floral and grassy hops, blackstrap molasses, toasted bread and some alcohol notes. The taste begins with some big roasted malt notes (expresso and dark chocolate), big hop character (floral, grassy, citrus), some blackstrap molasses, dark fruits, mild alcohol and chicory. The mouthfeel is full and rich, on the verge of being heavy and drinkability is unparalleled for the style. A truely incredible beer, almost flawless in every sense...victory definately hit a home run this year.

Photo of sinistrsam
4.72/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I poured this Imperial and it was perhaps the darkest I've ever seen. Absolutely black with a small, dark tan head with large bubbles. The head didn't appear to be very creamy but still exhibitade some lacing.
The aroma and taste definitely got more acute and impressive with time and an increase of temperature. It had the aroma of very dark fruits and sweet dark malt. Lots of hops and dark chocolate. I was eager to give it a try and as I said, tried it while too cold; don't make the mistake, serve it slightly chilled, not icy.
Anyhow, the taste blew my mind....bitter chocolate, dark candied fruits, alcohol (yet not overpowering), mild roasted coffee, malts and hops. It got so much mroe chocolaty as it warmed, and the taste grew generlaly more complex and enjoyable. It finished slightly acidic-tasting, like chewing on a coffee bean, but still remained smooth. I have to admit, this lives up to its rating. This is one of the finest examples of an Imperial I have ever had. it was smooth, warming and had a complexity of flavor I rarely find. I can't recommend this enough.

Storm King Stout from Victory Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 5,229 ratings.