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Storm King Stout - Victory Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Storm King StoutStorm King Stout

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5,307 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,307
Reviews: 2,540
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 12.07%
Wants: 168
Gots: 566 | FT: 17
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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-10-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,307 | Reviews: 2,540 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of becktone
4.88/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The beer is black, pitch black. It forms a nice creamy tan head. The lacing property of this beer is also very appetizing. I don't think they look much better than this. Head retention is good as well.

The smell of this beer is that of chocolate and roasted malts. I can also smell a hint of alcohol. There is something in the smell I can't put my finger on. In addition to that the aroma of this beer slightly reminds me of a RIS. Perhaps there is also a dark fruit aroma and flavor to this beer as well.

This beer tastes great. There is a big malt influence here. The sweeness on the front of the tongue is followed by a big chocolate and roasted flavor near the back of the mouth. There is also a very familiar taste accompained by that as well, however I can't put my finger on it. Perhaps it is the hops. This brew has a lingering aftertaste of the roasted flavor. Even when I burp the taste of that is exceptionally good as well. This is some high quality beer. I really don't get any bitter notes from this one, but I could be wrong. In any case this beer is great.

Storm King Stout has a nice full bodied mouthfeel to it. The light carbonation compliments the style well. I don't think that something that tastes like this should be highly carbonated. Just doesn't seem like it would mix to well. The beer is smooth and easy to drink. This is one beer that I will probably buy every season.

Photo of cooncat
4.7/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving from a bottle, dated 11/2005, and served at about 60 deg. F.

The pour is done with care, in order to keep the head to a manageable size. Tan head lasts quite some time, and after it has diminished, a swirl of the glass brings beautiful lacing. Color is DARK - Opaque! Like looking into a black hole, no light escapes.

The nose is incredible. Chocolate, coffee and licorice are abundant. A slight fruit aroma adds to the intrigue.

The first sip explodes on your palate, with intense flavors as mentioned above. In addition, a smoky flavor adds to this awesome brew. Yes, there is a noticable hop bite present, even with the intense flavors continually exploding on your tongue. Considerable alcohol presence is also noted.

To the end, this is a remarkable Imperial Stout - World class in my opinion. The mouthfeel is so rich and warming; you want to savor each sip for several minutes.

This would be the perfect beer to highlight the end of a perfect day. It could be a meal in itself ... or a dessert. This is one brew that will not disappoint.


Photo of brewandbbq
3.65/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vintage 1998

Poured blackish brown, translucent mahogany edging, with a quickly fizzled out head.
Dark chocolate shards and bitter coffee grounds in the nose, laced with kahlua.
Dark fruits linger beneath the roasted aromatics, and finish warm.
Medium body, with a lingering texture, and mild spritzy profile.
Bitter and mildly acrid on the pallet, followed by bakers chocolate and burnt espresso.
A lingering truffel paper note detracts.
Finishes slow, bitter, warm, and a bit basic.
Past prime at seven years old.

Photo of bitterdestroyer
3.82/5  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
4.06/5  rDev 0%
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
4.73/5  rDev +16.5%
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
4.58/5  rDev +12.8%
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 +9.1%
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
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
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
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
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
4.34/5  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 +12.1%
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
4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
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
4.56/5  rDev +12.3%
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
4.16/5  rDev +2.5%
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
4.31/5  rDev +6.2%
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
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
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 -0.2%
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
4.43/5  rDev +9.1%
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
3.6/5  rDev -11.3%
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
4.78/5  rDev +17.7%
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 +10.8%
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
4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
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
4.7/5  rDev +15.8%
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
4.78/5  rDev +17.7%
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.

Storm King Stout from Victory Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 5,307 ratings.