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Storm King Stout - Victory Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Storm King StoutStorm King Stout

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5,316 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 5,316
Reviews: 2,543
rAvg: 4.06
pDev: 12.07%
Wants: 170
Gots: 572 | 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: 5,316 | Reviews: 2,543 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of MDekker
4.41/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A touch of transparency in the pour, as a dark dark brown, but impossible to see through in the glass. Nice bit of fine-bubbled light brown head, forming nice lacing on the way down. Has that dark roasted stout smell. I can pick out a coffee aroma at the least. Tastes great, with a dark roasted flavor and smoky, malty aftertaste. Nice and creamy and smooth.

After trying a bunch of stouts a few days ago, this measures up very well, although I still favor Founders Breakfast Stout over this one (but only by a little).

Photo of Beaver13
3.96/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, bottled on 11/21/03. Pours an opaque black with a medium sized creamy brown head that retains well and laces the glass some.

The aroma is milky chocolate, coffee, anise, dark fruits and some mintiness and sharp alcohol.

The flavor is sweet and very milky chocolate, a little more mintiness and anise, and a bitter and roasty coffee finish. There's a touch of alcohol, but it is well hidden. The mouthfeel is medium to full with soft creamy carbonation.

Overall, a very fine beer. I was expecting a bit more though. I would like to try this fresh sometime to compare.

Photo of malty
4.26/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on Jan. 14 '05

Black color with a blossoming khaki head. Mucho lacing.

Scents on plums and molasses, reminiscent of a barley wine. Not much else comes through.

Whoa! There’s a lot going on here. Obvious dark roasted malts with perforated bitter edges compliments on the generous use of whole hops. Dark baker's chocolate rears its chalky head somewhere in the middle. Malted milk sweetly finishes things off.

Mouthfeel is extraordinary. Super silky soft and somewhat oily. The full body keeps moving along thanks to it's fine and well suited level of carbonation. Finish is veeerrryyy long, full and a tad bitter.

Drinkability is dangerously high for such an arsenal beer. Definitely an ale to be content with on a snowy Michigan weekend, even though its currently 82F and I'm smiling ear-to-ear. A winner from an exceptional brewery.

Photo of Dukeofearl
4.16/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Victory brews finally hit California in early-mid-2005, and the Inland Empire a couple months later. And it was only a few cases of Storm King, HopDevil, Golden Monkey, and V-12 at my local store. Once those cases went away, Victory was gone. But I was lucky enough to get a sixer of HopDevil and Storm King, and this is the review of my last bottle of the stout.

Beautiful rich deep mahogany brown-black that actually looks thick; has a brown root-beer head that drops to about 1/8th inch where it hangs for a while.

Aroma is rich, malty, slight chocolate sweetness, bitter espresso (when the beer is a little warmer), quite nice. Aroma is good, but I expected it to be stronger and more "in my face". It's actually subtle, and kind of weak. Not a bad aroma, don't get me wrong, I just wish it was more like some beers that I can smell from a foot (or more) away.

Flavor makes up for it though, with rich malts, espresso, cream, slight honey (very slight), perhaps some vanilla, and a nice bitter end. End also has a distinct alcohol presence.

Mouthfeel is very nice and comforting, not as creamy as some, but more so than a simple stout. The alcohol ending detracts from the overall mouthfeel, and reduces its drinkability.

In summary, this is an excellent stout (OK, double stout).

Photo of Knuckles
4.47/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Storm King...
You make my heart sing...
you make everything...
oh Storm King...

Storm King...
I think I love you...
so I guess I'd better drink that second bottle...

Appearance: Actually, a bit lighter for the style than is typical. I'm accustomed to imperial/double stouts possessing a heart of neutronium, a black so dense it absorbs all light and matter that comes its way. This beer, on the other hand, doesn't do that. Ruby red highlights around the outermost edges, almost makes it look like a standard stout. The color belies the badass ABV.

Smell: Chocolate and port, my homies, and hops my ass. I know they are there, but this 9.1% beer is the one with the wallet in the bag that says "Bad Muthafucka". Malts rule the day here, kids. Smell it and love it, or get the fuck out. Me, I'm staying.

Taste: Dark chocolate, port and just a mere hint of bitterness around the edges of my tongue. It's almost like the beer is daring you to come out and play.

Mouthfeel: I have a six year old son that loves to let ice cream melt, mix the crap out of it and then drink it. This beer feels like that in my mouth.

Drinkability: Well, if you're a big fat guy like myself, you can drink the crap out of it. And I would if I had more than two. However, I don't, so I'll have to jealously guard my next one.

This message brought to you courtesy of FirstMan, the sweet drinkin' BA who bought me this beer.

Photo of Px2GrafX
4.55/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

presentation: 12oz. with a black label and blue, yellow and red graphics. highlights of falcon-like/eagle-like bird with a crown peers at you out of the darkness. there is a personal explanation of their stout on the label, written by ron and bill, the brewers. abv is displayed at 9.1% along with a bottled date: sep. 08, '04. bottle conditioned.

appearance: pours midnight black opaque with no real highlights in my snifter glass. a nice 1" dark tan head with some red highlights. drops to a cap and laces nicely.

smell: first sniff reveals the reminiscent victory cascade lemony citrus hops. alcohol and some fruitiness.

taste: semi-sweet dark chocolate and espresso. a mild bitterness follows to attempt to balance out the toasted malt, coffee and molasses. more noticible alcohol as it warms. lightly bitter dry/acidic finish. begs for more.

mouthfeel: wonderful! thick and viscous full body with a light prickling carbonation. smooth with a velvety swallow. perfect!

drinkability: i feel the alcohol working, but this is a very drinkable impy stout. the thickness may slow down some, but i love it.

overall: i was reminded of how overpowering old horizontal was, so i planned on drinking the one bottle of storm king that i had next year. thanks to skyhand for sending me another one in a bif. i'm so glad i got to try one now. it's a truely beautiful american impy stout!

Photo of TongoRad
4.45/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Disclaimer: this is a seasonal brew but it has been well cellared and in good condition for this review. This can be seen as a snapshot of how this beer will age.

It pours a rich opaque ebony color with ruby hints at the edges and a lasting dense tan one-finger head. There is some real depth here.

The aroma is powerful- it can barely be contained. It hits my nose the second the crown has been popped. Citrus hops are first on the scene, but they can barely conceal a mountain of roasted malt and caramel. Some spices also come to the surface (vanilla, anise, sassafras) as well as some berries and figs, and even a touch of butter. It seems at first to have a straightforward aroma but it becomes more complex the more it is examined.

The palate is full yet dry, though the flavor falters in comparisson to the nose. It is mostly the coffee-like malts and caramel but little else. Bitterness is pleasingly high. The finish is long and it is there that a touch of the herbal/spiciness shows its head. Unfortunately the fruit has not carried through.

I really do like this beer and anticipate a re-review when fresh.

Photo of hero27
3.69/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottled Jan. 14, 2005.

Pours jet black, with a frothy, beige head...leaves thin sheets of lacing. Absolutely impermeable darkness.
Faint smell of roasted malts..nothing too overpowering. Tastes are more subtle than I expected them to be, however, it is fairly complex. Finishes quite bitter, even for an Imperial Stout...more of a roasted coffee taste mixed with a nice hop finish. The alcohol could be a little better hidden. At 9.1%, I could definitely taste it. With the Old Horizontal (11% ABV) I had the other night, I could barely taste any alcohol at all.
To be honest, I'm a bit surprised this beer lands in the Top 20, but then again, I'm not a "stout expert" by any means. I'm going to set my 2nd bottle down a year or so and compare the two.

Big thanks to ski271 for the bottle.

Photo of UncleFlip
4.58/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

When I set down this bottle on my computer desk, my rather large stuffed penguin fell down and tumbled to the floor.. I hope that's a sign of this beer's power. :)

OK, here we go. Nice satisfying sound as the cap comes off, and a mist rises out and blown away by the ceiling fan. Just a hint of the aroma reaches my nose before I even pour.

In the stream down to the glass, it looks cola colour.... There's a nice strong tan head (three fingers or more- and I have big fingers) that slowly disintegrates, leaving thick wet lace behind. Below it is a VERY dark, VERY clean liquid, mahogany at the edges, and also mahogany when held to the light- no opaque haze, just a nice clean, clear stout.

The aroma is lighter than I expected, a little sweet and hoppy, with malty qualities that also carry some alcohol aroma. There's a strong yeasty kick to the smell.

Wow... I can't quite put my finger on the flavours right at the first sip! There's a woodiness at first, along with a dark maltiness- but the malt is not cloying or overpowering. The woodiness continues, with some spice building into the finish. There's a bit of hoppiness up front, but it dulls a bit and combines with the spiciness, then hangs in the back center of your tongue.

The mouthfeel is a little fizzier than I really like in a stout, but that doesn't distract at all. There's a low, tight carbonation that couples nicely with the medium-thick body of the beer. The liquid is nice and round and unobtrusive. Very pleasant.

Not the most drinkable stout I've had, but I still give it high marks. I could down a few of these in one night with no complaints. I now wish I'd bought more than just two bottles on my last trip to VA.

Be well

Photo of IceAce
4.43/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12 Oz. w/ bottled on date of Dec 16, 2004

Pours black as coal with a touch of mahogany anound the edges of the glass where the smallest amount of light manages to escape. The topping of this baby is two fingers of dense tan foam with lots of staying power.

The nose is comprised mostly of alcohol esters and deep roasted malt with hints of chocolate and coffee.

Entry is highlighted by the immediate discovery of a wonderous mouthfeel; velvety smooth, light...yet filling. The taste is a seven course meal consisting of roasted malts, expresso coffee,sweet toffee, melted chocolate, smooth yeast, and alcohol esters. Suddenly the entire dinner stops with the entrance of whole flower hops until they release their grip on the palate to allow a beautiful malted milk chocolate fade.

Thus far this is (by far) the best beer I've had from this near-famous brewery in Downingtown Pa.

Photo of ChappyCubsFan
4.23/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've tasted this several times in bottles. More recently, I had a bottle of it at the Which Brew in Easton, PA. But I never did a review on it until now. I guess that's because I finally visited Victory Brewing in Downingtown, PA, and I had a sample of it on draft. I believe the bartender even mixed a sample of the Storm King with the Golden Monkey tripel to create a special concoction for us. That was good too.

But the Storm King is definitely one of the most potent and complex stouts I've ever had. It pours very dark...black may be more appropriate. The malt taste leads to many assumptions about the recipe. It has a chocolate, coffee taste, but there are many other things at work. I also sensed that there was a hint of cherry or raspberry. But it is a potent stout, and I know I could not finish more than a pint of this in one sitting. Very tasty. One of the best stouts I've ever had.

Photo of egajdzis
4.67/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

(9 months old – 9/16/03) Poured a black, opaque color with a medium sized tan head that did leave some lacing on the glass. Aroma of sweet chocolate malts and a slight hint of dark fruit in the aroma as well. Bitter coffee, sweet chocolate taste, slightly hoppy. No alcohol can be noticed, considering this is 9.1 Pure heaven!.

(Cask 8 months old – 7/26/04) Opaque black with a small tan head and beautiful lacing. Roasted and floral hop aroma. Chocolate soaked hop taste with a strong roasted coffee finish. Dark fruits (berry and plum), nuts, and just the slightest bit of alcohol. This was a cask so it was not carbonated, and it was simply incredible!

Photo of Ricochet
4.1/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured dark, dark dark but there was a little light showing and a little carbonation to speak of on the sides of the glass but that quickly went away. Strong, roasted malt smell, licorace and alcohol. Mouth was as a stout should be, Chewy, yet thinner but I did find the alcohol was more present. This was an imperial feeling, therefore, outstanding.

Taste? Mostly black licorace. My first impression and it lingered with me, then the complex flavors come out and show what they can do. Still, the licorace is a bit overpowering.

Well, I could say this was a great imperial, but it seemed to miss a few notes to make it truly palatable to me especially compared to recent imperials. I may have it again, because price is good, but not likely. There's lots else to taste...

Photo of Shultzerdugen
4.46/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle with bottled on date of Dec-16-04.

Opaque black/darkest brown topped with one of the best heads I've seen. Like a chocolate milkshake in color in consistency. Impressive.

Candied cherries, powdered chocolate, and a spiced rum vibe come out in the nose.

Full bodied super slick, creamy, and smooth. Dark fruits and chocolate notes in the taste. Man, talk about creamy! Surprising hop profile is assertive and bitter roasted malts coat the mouth in the finish, paired with a peppery alcohol.

Quite the enjoyable beer, and one of the mellower DS/IS's I've had. Very drinkable for the style, and a mouthfeel that is unsurpassed.

Photo of goodbyeohio
4.54/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

9/04 consumed in 7/05

dark brown with tan head. impenetrable. very slight area on top that takes to light in a chestnut brownish ruby fashion. aroma is heavy on tobacco and mocha smooth java. nice, roasty. perfect aroma. some vanilla cream exists amongst this medley of sensory stimulation. too cold, needs time to warm for flavor maximization.

hops and roasted malts in copious quanitites, and chocolate is huge once the beer warms. finishes with a delicious hazelnutty smooth cream. hop contrast gives perfect balance and this beer is just shy of extreme.. could imagine this would be perfect on a stormy night. had this on tap as well, and i would take the 9 month old bottle anyday.

and as other reviewers have said, wonderfully priced.

another victory for victory

Photo of beermanbrian
4.92/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Time to sit down and review the storm king. This is one that i've had a few times in the past but not since i've been reviewing beers here.

Pours a deep black color with a nice fluffy 1" foamy tan head. The foam slowly disipates to i thin cap that leaves trails down the glass after every sip. Smell is roasted chocolate malt, my favorite. Hint of cherries too, and more hops than expected. Taste of chocalate malt but the big surprise is the level of hop bitterness. Just a great tasting stout. The high ABV is well hidden. Smooth and creamy mouthfeal. This just goes down sooo smooth. This is going to be a regular on my beer list. Also, the price is incredibly reasonable (less than $30/case) for the quality. If you haven't had this beer, you must try it. Great job Victory.

Photo of neonbrown82
4.62/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is the most drinkable heavy stout I've ever had. Thanks to GCBrewingCo for the opportunity to try this.

The liquid is like a black hole, sucking all nearby light into the deep dark void in the glass. Unfortunately it poured with very little head, but instead produced a thin chocolate ring around the maw of the black hole.

The smell is of roasted chocolate malt along with coffee and ethanol. It smells quite rich and sweet, unlike many Imperial Stouts I've had that are a bit thin and soy saucy. The hoppiness really shines through in both the smell and the taste as the beer warms up a bit.

The taste is amazing. It starts off with a sweet vanilla and chocolate maltiness fading into a bitter roastiness at the finish. Has a bit of a fruity hop quality hidden in it as well. The late-finish has a to-die-for vanilla chocolate coffee taste complimented well by the american hops.

The mouthfeel is rich and velvety, but I was hoping for something a bit more viscous. I can't complain, however. These guys have obviously done well with this brew.

Even though this beer sits at a hefty 9.1% ABV, it is very smooth and easy drinking. If I had another, I'd drink it. Probably not recommended for an extended session, though. Cheers to GCBrewingCo as well as Victory Brewing Co. If it were any better, I'd probably take up permanent residence on the street curb outside the brewery.

Photo of nickss
5/5  rDev +23.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Ok... So I'm reticent to give a 5.
But as I'm sure most people know who have had this wonderful brew, this is miraculous. Liquid perfection.

Appearance: Black... as dark as night. Pours with a huge foamy head, which very slowly subsides to a light brown cap on top of this black brew.

Smell: Huge toffee smell.... I could smell this all day long... but then I wouldnt be able to drink it =P

Taste: Chocolate, Toffee, with a bit of alcohol in the back of the tongue.

Mouthfeel: Thick, chunky, mmmm.

Drinability: .... do I actually need to answer this?

I will just say.... probably my favorite beer... I simply cannot think of anything wrong with it.... flawless.

Photo of nrrd
4.73/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Since moving from Philly to LA, one of the things I miss most is Victory. Thankfully, last time a friend of mine went back east he picked me up a bottle of Storm King stout, my favorite of their beers. This 12 oz bottle was from Oct. 20th 04, and tasted great.

Poured black with a small brownish head, really good looking. Mouth feel is a little thick, and generally wonderful. This is as smooth a beer, as you’ll find. The taste was exactly as I remembered it. No extreme flavors--the chocolate and coffee hints balance with the fruity character to create an almost perfect blend that doesn’t push too far in one direction. Not too bitter, not too sweet, malty, but wonderfully balanced with a good amount of hop character.

It’s high in alcohol, but very drinkable. It was nice to sit out on the porch and sip for about a half hour.

God I love this Beer. Can someone please start distributing Victory beers in Los Angeles?

Photo of ommegangpbr
4.6/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I'd been looking to try this for quite some time and was not disappointed.
Big, bold black chocolatey coffee goodness in a 12 ounce bottle.
Rich and tasty, though perhaps consumed while a little too cold.
This serving didn't...err... have the chance to warm up properly. Not that I poured this into a beer bong or anything (t'was served in a tulip) but this went down so easily it was gone before I knew it.
There's alcohol in this?
Oh there it is... in my knees. It snuck past my nose and tongue.
Pay your respects to the Storm King.

Photo of LuckySevens82
4.8/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle courtesy of Ninjaworm. Thanks so much for this one Oak, I've been waiting for so long to try it.
Pours a deep black, almost crude oil like, but there are definitely some ruby and light brown notes. Head is somewhat small, but that's to be expected, and dense. Lacing and retention are pretty good.
Smell is interesting as it is not what I would normally expect from a Double Stout. The relatively normal aromas of coffee, chocolate, roasted malts, and hops are all there. But this is one of the fruitiest stouts I've ever smelled. VERY wine-like. Grapes and rasins are present, as is something else, which I can't remember and can't seem to distinguish right now.
Taste is malty sweet up front, with a definte coffee and chocolate taste. Bitter hops follow. And this all seems to be finished off by a very dry, wine-like finish.
Mouthfeel is darn near perfect. Not too slick or oily. Very well balanced as far as malt/hops are concerned.
Like I said, I've waited a long time to try this beer and I am definitely not disappointed. A fantastic stout, and yet another reason why I curse the fact that Victory is not distributed in Florida.

Photo of rhoadsrage
4.32/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

( Served in a small strange)
A- This beer pours a thick pitch black body with a deep tan head.

S- This beer smells of sweet dark candy/ molasses and a roasted malt. Hints of toasted grain also came through as the beer warmed.

T- Caramel malt and deep roasted malt notes with a nice bitter hop finish. A slight hint of sourness in the finish.

M- Medium full body with a creamy texture.

D-This is a very nice beer with big dark malt complexity that they managed to sneak a nice hop bitterness in the finish. I have to rate this one again when I can find it. Very nice.

Photo of jakester
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is from a 12oz. bottle with Nov16 04 clearly marked on the label. Fantastic! (though with this beer it might not matter so much.)

Pours almost but not quite opaque, deep dark mahogany with a light brown foamy head that dropped fairly quickly to islands and a ring. Surprising. No real lacing observed. Also surprising.

Aroma is of dark brown sugar, molasses, prunes, cherries, (kind of like a zinfandel) some citrus-y hops, and alcohol. Couldn't wait to sip this one.

The first flavor is of big malt sweetness, followed by a good dose of bittering hops. Then you get a strong dark sweet coffee, burnt toffee apples, dark rum soaked cherries, and alcohol. Maybe some citrus-y hops in the back. Outstanding!

Mouthfeel is a luxurious sweetness, medium carbonation, tongue coating resins, and lip smacking malts. An extended sweet, hot aftertaste completes this great beer.

This beer is way too drinkable for its 9.1% ABV. I was a little disappointed by the head drop, but this is a keeper.

Photo of CortexBomb
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour is jet black with a small, off-tan head on top, what I would expect from a quality Imperial. The beer noticeably clings to the side of the glass upon shifting. Smell is strongly of roasted malts with a nip of coffee and some alcohol...I want to take a sip.

A hop citrus twang meets me up front, which starts the back taste buds tingling. This slowly recedes and allows the roasted malts to fully enter the picture, as well as some coffee, both adding some dimension. The hops continue to stick around and offer little shots of flavour here and there, but never take over completely. Alcohol, though subdued, is also definitely present in the flavour. A light burn hits the back of the throat on the swallow, as well as a final shot from the hops, which leave a wistful, lingering hop bitter for a few moments after the swallow. Quite good.

The mouth is thick and viscuous, just like I like my stouts, while the drinkability continues the all-around good nature of this stout.

My overall impression: This is a really well done stout. It does most of the little things right via the smell and body, and then also manages to offer a memorable taste which offers the hop presence that has become popular lately, without having them absolutely overwhelm the beer.

Photo of twelvinlucifer
4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice head on this beer, dissapates to a nice thin flavor trapping cover.
Smell is very pleasent with a tinge of alchohol. Very strong chocholate/mocha smell with a hint of espresso.
First thing to jump out of the taste is hopps, coffee next, a bit bitter and sweet at the same time. The finish is very worm and bitter. alchohol is definitely present in the taste and double in the finish. Hits the stomach like a brick. You know you're drinking something with significant ABV. The sweetness really comes out as it warms.
The mouthfeel is good, not to lingering, goes away just in time to prepare you foor another round.
I am quite fond of this stout! Came Highly recomended by a fellow BA'er.
A nice kicker about this beer is that it is affordable. You don't feel guilty about buying a whole six pack!

Storm King Stout from Victory Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 5,316 ratings.