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Storm King Stout - Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

Not Rated.
Storm King StoutStorm King Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.

2,599 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 2,599
Hads: 5,727
Avg: 4.1
pDev: 11.95%
Wants: 208
Gots: 822 | FT: 13
Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States | website

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

Availability: Year-round

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

Emerging from the deepest shades of darkness, a rolling crescendo of flavors burst forth from this robust stout. The thundering, hoppy appeal of Storm King subsides into the mellow subtleties of roasted malt, exhibiting an espresso-like depth of character in its finish. An exquisite blend of imported malts and whole flower American hops merge harmoniously in this complex ale. Discover the dark intrigue of Storm King, as it reveals the rich, substantial flavors that it holds within.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 2,599 | Hads: 5,727
Photo of Jimmys
3.48/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: pitch black, practically can see my reflection, with a deep mocha hued head.

S: roast, rich cocoa. sweet dessert fruits. tobacco. cigar wrapper. a touch of vanilla.

T: cranberries. chocolate bomb. deep roasted coffee. really leaves a lingering bitterness/acidity.

M: silky and creamy. standard

D: honestly, i expected a little more from this one. i love the brews that come out of victory and i have seen a little hype around this one, but to me this seems like a pretty standard RIS. im sure ill give it another shot and hopefully have a more positive review.

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Photo of KelsoSaaz
3.47/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured into snifter

A: Pours a motor oil brown-black with a thin, quickly dissipating tan head.

S: Dried tobacco leaves, musty-earthy smell, coffee, smoke, slight sweet malt

T: Bitter baking chocolate, burnt coffee, wood ash. Tons of roasted bitterness that is almost too much. Hints of smooth malt richness, but not enough. Too harsh.

M: Burn from the alcohol and harsh bitter notes overwhelm the palate. Viscous mouthfeel and mild carbonation.

O: Not the tasty RIS that I was expecting this. Victory went overboard with the roasted bitterness and the alcohol is too harsh. Not a great beer from a usually very good brewery.

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Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.47/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Deep, dark brown. Head is light tan and leaves a small ring. Creamy with some faint hints of lacing. Pours on the moderate side.

Smell: Faint smoke and char. Grainy malts. Sweet with a solid punch of cocoa powder. Roasted malts. Burnt malts. Day old fire that's been watered down. Touches of new leather. Charcoal.

Taste: Smoke and an ashtray. Big charred charcoal flavors. Burnt malts push flavors of dark cocoa, old coffee grinds, and burnt meat edges (without the meaty component). Pure char. Lingering sweetness and a touch of roasted malts round out the back, but it's all about the char. Faint hints of citrus on the back. Alcohol asserts itself, but mildly.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and creamy without ever being full. Carbonation is minimal and works well with the burnt malt assault.

Overall: Every time I try this beer it reminds me of a fire or an ashtray. It's easily one of the most burnt tasting beers I've ever encountered. This is by no means a bad thing. Loads of flavor, but finishing a whole bottle becomes taxing.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.46/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap into a snifter.

Why do I bother with the appearances. It's a stout. It's black.. moving on.. okay but seriously folks... The bubbles on this one are actually kind of a soapy consistency the fall at a decent clip buy not too fast. The bubbles are a faint brown.

Aromas of faint malt and a strange almost dare I say watery wetness, a "clean" sort of smell as if you were smelling just opened tap water from your kitchen sink. That's the only way I can describe it.

Taste improves after the bouquet even thought the watery sense comes forward. A 'soft' tobacco chew like comes in the taste almost like... chewing tobacco, leaving a bitter dark chocolate aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is actually good with a small bitterness balanced by the easy wet taste.

Drinkability I'd rate just a fraction above average, there are things worth exploring in the stout, it is not a waste of time to have one.

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Photo of Vendetta
3.46/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

Original Rating Date:
October 18, 2008

Pours deep black and thick, like tar. Not much head, but the head that's there is dark brown, like the color of milk chocolate. Not too much nose, what's there is a sweet chocolaty smell. Tastes rich, dark, sweet, dark fruits. Roasted, dry finish. Thick, creamy, rich palate. Very good stout.

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Photo of imperialbigswig
3.46/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Alright, now this brew I'm a little touchy about.
A- thick dark black-good
S- maltiness, but oh no, what's that, Do I detect a heavy hoppiness to this highly acclaimed RIS- NOT COOL!
T-There are great chocolates, malts and slight coffee here, BUT a huge influx of hops, ARGHHHH.
M- rich and crispy, could be heavier.
D- could have a couple.
Is this a Russian Imperial Stout or a Russian Imperial Pale Ale dyed black?
I just don't think RIS should taste so hoppy and crisp.
All that said I still enjoy the beer, I just don't think its labeled correctly.

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Photo of KFBR392
3.46/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Poured a very dark brown stout that was pitch black when attempting to see through the glass. Carbonation was very present throughout, probably the most I've seen in this level of a stout. Appropriate amounts of lacing stuck to the glass as this beer was drank. Enjoyed out of a snifter.

Smell: The aroma gave a mysterious mask for this beer. The hops are in the front but the roasted malt character is buried. You can tell other characters of this beer are trying to burst through in the aroma but cannot overcome the hops.

Taste: An incredibly powerful hop attack out of this stout. I feel like the hop character is trying to be like that of Nightstalker from Goose Island but to me is not on the same level. The aroma leads the drinker to expect a creamy hop lacing but comes off as over the top bitter. The darkness of this beer is hidden. Very little malt or coffee/espresso presence in this beer.

Mouthfeel: The sticky hops hand around for a long time with this beer. The creamy texture is there but at the same time leaves me wanting some more. Hops create a dryness which clings to the palette

Overall: Not a memorable stout. Its direction seems lost on me. I had high expectations for this beer and it did not live up to them. Worth a try but for the price tag I would recommend many other Stouts.

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Photo of jstilwell
3.46/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Since getting into the RIS(s) this seemed like the next likely target, picked up a sixer for $11.

A: Dark Black, strong brownish off white head, great glass lacing, good look so far

S: Strong alcohol, earth and hops

T: Strong alcohol earth and hops, this has a burnt dark piney taste with a bit of a jasmine like finish.

M: Chewy and voluminous, a bit of frothiness, definitely a winner in the mouthfeel category.

D: Very low, this is one bitter strong ass RIS. I would have a hard opening two consecutive.

A quality example of the style but a bit too bitter for m

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Photo of Dr_Leafy_Green
3.46/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours nearly jet black with only a little light lace. Mild nose, slightly sweet aroma. A little flat in the front followed by a lingering bitterness. Mouthfeel is uncharacteristically light for the style. Overall, a fair stout.

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Photo of hopstorm
3.46/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

As far as imperial stouts go, I really wouldn't classify it as one for any other reason than the alcohol content. Upon opening I get a raisony malty smell. Hints of chocolate and maybe a little alcohol. It pours just a little thinner than motor oil, just the way i like em'. Not much lacing from the weak head. At first its lacking a bit in the "imperial" character I come to expect from a higher abv beer. I expected it to be thicker and creamier, but its more dry and thin. Great drinkabilty for the style, I can't tell its 9.1 at all! Hop presence is there as it warms and then the chocolaty coffee tastes shine. A decent stout but I won't be buying this one again.

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Photo of mcnabb0001
3.46/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle with enjoy by date of July 15 2015 this beer must age well with a date like that.

A - pours a pitch black with a frothy light tan head.

S - sweet fruity smell with strong hop scent unusual for the RIS that i have had.

T - definite american hop flavor in the forefront, with sweet fruity undertones. The malt flavor in the background much more subtle then I'm used to. This brew definitely leans more toward the hop than malt.

M - more carbonated than usual, lighter than most RIS i have tasted.

D - More drinkable than usual for an RIS could definitly throw back a few of these but gotta be careful with that 9% abv. Overall not the best RIS i have ever had, different but not terrible highly drinkable.

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Photo of mrasskicktastic
3.46/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Black (dark brown) with a one finger cocoa head with decent retention and a moderate amount of lacing.

S - Pine hops, grapefruit hops, nail polish remover and a touch of burnt toast are all that get through.

T - Foretaste of pine hops with a bit of alcohol and carbon. A faint chocolatey sweetness. The aftertaste is a lingering pine with alcohol and a mild bitterness. Alcohol is way too potent.

M - Thin, slick, smooth and refreshing.

D - Storm king is pretty drinkable. It drinks like a 6 percent beer but hits like a 9 (since it is a 9). Pairs well with beers that mesh with a shitload of hops. This is the hophead stout. It wouldn't be hard to mistake this for a rather smooth IPA in a blind tasting. This is a good beer, but it is extremely overrated.

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Photo of 1Adam12
3.45/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Jet black color, small head. Nice aroma's. Strong coffee and malt. I wish it tasted as good as it smells. Strong malt taste with dark coffee. Not as heavy as I like them to be, but still drinkable. Aftertaste lingers for quite a bit of coffee and malt. Slightly bitter finish. This was ok. Nothing very special IMO. I looked forward to trying this for awhile and now I don't know that I will buy it again.

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Photo of HalfFull
3.45/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a 12 oz. bottle of the Storm King while shopping for other things. Nice to see a single available.

Pours a rather deep brown/black into a wine glass and offers a full inch of mocha head. Decent retention of some bubbly goodness.

Chocolate and alcohol on the nose, touch of cocoa and some rich dried fruit. Quite endearing though a bit subdued for an RIS, yet offering a decent hop nose nonetheless.

Breaks down a bit in the flavor department as the smokey notes overwhelm. Feel and drink remain strong however, as the 9% is quite elusive on the palate. Overall a bit light in character for an R.I.S.

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Photo of VirginiaBeerMan
3.45/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

The first time I tried this was at a tasting and I was not impressed. However, it was surrounded by 5-6 beer tastings on either end and I thought it wasn't a fair assessment. I was right.

Very dark/black in color; creamy tan head, mild roasty aroma, a little too much hop flavor and bitteness in a stout for my liking, which I believe is the weak link for this bottle. complex flavors, dark chocolate, coffee, malt; alcohol could be hidden slightly better, but overall a pretty good imperial stout

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Photo of harrymel
3.45/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Best by 10DEC15 - reviewed 19NOV12 (about two years old?)

Black, light tan foam. Spots of lace. Smells of malts, oats, coffee, toasted barley and some char. Tastes like a middle of the road RIS - bitter with malt and toasted flavors with some burnt cracker. Thick body with a dry finish. Carb is tight and sharp. Fine beer for a hardcore night - tend to like my beers a bit smoother these days.

Best by: 12/10/15 - Reviewed 24FEB11 - 3.5/4/4/3/3.5-3.78
A: Pours a deep brown with limited translucency which illustrates at the edges only with tilt. Single finger, dark latte head dissipates quickly and retains a thin sheet of the same. Lacing is limited.
S: Very resinous hop nose cloaks the chocolate malts, coffee, and lightly sweet backbone. This combo allows and convinces me the beer is both ready to be consumed now, or can stand the test of time in the cellar.
T: Again, the hops are immediate in this as they were in the nose. Almost a thickened ABA. Great coffee, cocoa, black charred malts again in the backbone.
M: thicky, sticky, tacky, lip-smacky. Resonates with heavy body and moderate carbonation. Maybe a hare more spritely than I would prefer in the style, but nonetheless, above average.
D: Very good beer, I venture to say I would enjoy it even more with a year or two on it. Good beer, wish it was a little less intense on the hops up front.

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Photo of vikingloki
3.45/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

From bottle into pint glass, at a bar.

Pours out dark, smells promising.Nice chocolate head, good carbonation, swirls around and settles. I'd been looking forward to trying it. Has nice espresso taste. Hoppy, too hoppy for me.Seems to have a thinner mouthfeel than what I expected. Glad to buy the bottle before I bought the case.

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Photo of 9InchNails
3.45/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On the bottle it reads: Jan 10, 2016. The font is quite tiny and printed on the label itself.

Pitch black with hints of ruby red. Nice brown head and decent head retention.

Roasted malt backed up by a decent amount of hop character. Dark fruits, grapes, chocolate all mixing well for a pleasant aroma.

Roasted malt, burnt coffee, caramel, bitterness from the hops and grapes. The aftertaste is a little acidic and metalic.

Medium body, light carbonation, leaves the lips sticky. No alcohol burn whatsoever.

Average taste and slightly above in the mouth feel. The aroma is the true winner in this brew. I feel the tastes were subdued by the aftertaste of metal. I feel like the flavors were trying to reach out but fell short. Even though it was a average tasting Stout, the rest of the factors keep this from being an average brew all around.

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Photo of thekanna
3.43/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Pitch black with a moderate tan head which rests on top and slowly dissipates.

S: Strong dark chocolate and roasted malt aromas. Charcoal and a generally burnt wood presence are also detected.

T: Extremely strong espresso and dark chocolate notes. Malts seem like they went through a smokehouse and just escaped, scathed, from the other side. Body has an undeniable sourness of prunes. Ends with an extremely strong, powerful, hop bitterness.

M: Thick, rich, and heavy.

D: This was more an assault to my palate than an enjoyable brew. It would be noticeably better if it weren't so rough around the edges.

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Photo of bunn4funn
3.43/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

11/10/05 bottled on 10/31/05 (fresh) reveiwed in my favorite snifter with my brother.

A- Black poured with a one finger head dimishing quickly to a slight oiling effect on the surface. nice little ring that stays ever so present all the way down. I also had a good amount of sedements floating around in the bottom of the three that i drank .

S- roasty malts is the first thing that comes to mind, brown sugar or something sweet in the background maybe it was a dark fruit like plums or something, coco , as the beer warms i definatly smell alcohol, thats about all i get out of it after a little over half the glass.

T- Whoa !!! That was a bitter kick in the mouth, didnt waste any time pronouncing the hops were present, this bitterness is then played down in the middle by a nice warm alcohol fuzzy to the sweetness and roasted malts taste. Very complex, as the taste comes on in chapters, bitterness goes away to sraight warm feeling everytime i take a sip even the last. Of course the roasted taste is still there but the alcohol is a lil to defining for my taste. This brew needs to be aged, I will set some aside and come back to it, but my first impression was ill stick with the Oak Aged Yeti (Great Divide).

M- Slick, heavy, and warm, slightly carbonated

D- Two was enough almost to much definately a night cap beer or for those cold bone chilling nights.

Overall- The Storm King is just that, Comes on like a raging storm then subsides to a shaken calm, nice brew very complex but ill seek out others before i try this one again, like i said maybe the cellering will help balance this out a little too. Definatly will be writing another reveiw on a more aged version.

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Photo of wcintula
3.43/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

This was pretty nice, poured into a small glass coffee mug with a black body and a big brown head. Smells of strong roasted flavors, it has a good hop bite to the flavor. I was a little disappointed with the mouthfeel because I found it a bit too carbonated. Too prickly for an RIS in my tastes. All in all, a good beer, gets nicer as it warms and as you drink on, but I found it with a high acidity as well.

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Photo of gnoff
3.42/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Sampled from 12 fl oz bottle courtesy of a friend, traded from the USA.

Dark brown color, thick beige head.
Hoppy and alcohol scent, still fresh.
Sweet taste with lingering bitterness in the aftertaste.
Medium mouthfeel with low bitterness initially.

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Photo of dandandan79
3.42/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This does not taste like a roasty coffee laced stout. This is a hoppy IPA tasting beer. Not really what I want when I want a stout. If it said IPA well than okay. For an IPA its good. For a stout its bad.

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Photo of jkendrick
3.41/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Dark brown to black with minimal light on the edges. Thick and creamy head that sticks around for a while. Nice lacing when the head finally dissipates.

Aroma: Dark fruits and bitter coffee/espresso. The alcohol and hops aromas were present more than is typical for a stout, even an Imperial stout. Not particularly impressive.

Mouthfeel: More medium bodied than the full body I was expecting. It did have some creaminess, but the carbonation kind of overpowered the creaminess.

Taste: This is a dark fruits and bitter espresso stout. The alcohol taste was way too present for me and gives this thing a bite. I felt the overall flavor was way too bitter and not nearly balanced enough.

Overall impression: I have had this in the past and remembered it being a lot better. It's not BAD by any stretch, but it doesn't measure up to some of the best stouts I've had.

ETA: reading some other reviews, it looks as though this beer might have slipped in recent years. I don't know what you're doing differently, Victory, but please go back to your old methods.

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Photo of JamesS
3.41/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours out nice and dark, although with little head for a stout and almost no lacing. It has a nice deep scent, with nice chocolate and roasted scents, although not as strong as many stouts. Good coffee taste with a nice deep flavor. Although this stout has a high ABV, the alcohol flavor is extremely slight, not overshadowing it’s nice taste at all. It goes down smoothly and is a good imperial stout, well worth a try or six.

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