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Storm King Stout - Victory Brewing Company

Storm King StoutStorm King Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

4,483 Ratings
THE BROS
86
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4483
Reviews: 2471
rAvg: 4.09
pDev: 12.22%


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
Ratings: 4,483 | Reviews: 2,471 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of goz
goz

Massachusetts

4.53/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark black pour, brown head which laces nicely. Aroma is roasted malts, chocolate, and espresso. Taste is bitter chocolate, espresso, dark dry fruits, followed with cirtus and pine from the hops. Add the warming from the alcohol, and the total is a completely enjoyable brew.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2003 10:58:10 | More by goz
Photo of allboutbierge
allboutbierge

Austria

4.88/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Drank out of a storm king glass. An awesome winter warmer. Thick and heavy yet drinkable. First sip reminded me of SN's stout in respect that it has that touch of crisp hopiness. Color was that of my 30W oil and head was medium with a brownish hue. Taste was that of a heavy and dark coffee/chocolate with a crisp hopiness in the background. This beer is calorie and flavor packed. A recommendation.

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2003 17:49:53 | More by allboutbierge
Photo of beernut7
beernut7

Massachusetts

4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I didn't read the reviews of this one before tasting, so I didn't really know what to expect. I was rewarded by a very unique and flavorful concoction. The pour left a deep dark stormy brew with a distinct hoppy aroma. The first smooth swig greeted my palate with smooth-edged big malt presence and a huge floral hop infusion. The flavors meld perfectly to create a very drinkable and tasty brew that goes down smooth and leaves you searching for another. The high ABV is not as apparent as one might think, but definitely kicks in after a couple go down the hatch.

Serving type: bottle

01-13-2003 06:31:20 | More by beernut7
Photo of BeerAngel
BeerAngel

Texas

3.83/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a near jet-black color with a 1-1/2 finger tan head with staying power. The aromas of chocolate malts and light alcohol dominate the nose. The taste reveals roasted chocolate malts with a crisp hop bite and slight alcohol dryness on the tail. The mouthfeel is a little on the light side for a beer of this style but to me it does not take away from this beer a significant amount. Now my opinion: Does it hold all the characteristics it needs to be number one ranked on BA? No. But the fact is, it is number one (at least at the time of this writing it is number one) and I value my fellow BA’s opinion and BA’s formula works well. Is it a good beer? No, it is a great beer. But it lacks complexity that a top notch beer should have.

Nonetheless, I enjoyed this beer, but I was less than “wowed”. I do however need to thank the BA’s who did beer trades with me to acquire such a touted brew: McCall, Beerluvr, and Rotsaruch. Thanks guys!

Serving type: bottle

01-08-2003 16:04:32 | More by BeerAngel
Photo of Viking
Viking

Indiana

4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very dark, ruby-tinted brown body bordering on black. Small, quickly fading head. Body is a bit syrupy - I notice the brew clinging to the glass after a gentle schwirl. Incredible aroma - fruity, hoppy, with a heavy toffee/coffee malt base. Flavor full of hops - nice and bitter! Also, a rich taste of roasted malt, and slightly vinous fruit. Finish is extremely oily, with a noticeable alcohol warmth. Body is thick and a bit syrupy (more so than I expected from the slight clinging). It may in fact be just a bit too thick, but it's still excellent. A truly fine Imperial Stout. I'd love to get my hands on more of this. Alas, it will have to wait...

Special thanks to pbrian for sending this one my way!

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2003 15:47:45 | More by Viking
Photo of mickstepp
mickstepp

Ohio

4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

After following the recent debate as to whether this beer really deserves its high rating I thought I'd try it again and found myself to be just as impressed as my first experience. A beautiful dark opaque brew with a nice toffee colored head and toffee aromas. I love the hop level in this beer and the dry finish. It's also a very powerful beer and the high alcohol prevents it from being a session quaffer. I put this beer more in the dessert category, great to finish a meal with or to sip by the fire.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2003 14:47:41 | More by mickstepp
Photo of stoutlove77
stoutlove77

Arizona

4.5/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This stout is thick and full of flavor. The first sip I took with my pal DavidBanner and we were pretty impressed on the fruity flavor mixed with somewhat tint of coffee taste. I couldn't really tell the ABV for the flavor was so full it gave me a bite. It has a dark head and tint, with a sweet distinctive aroma of rasberries. The reason I give this the drinkabilty of a 4 is that one too many is gonna be trouble.

Serving type: bottle

01-05-2003 21:40:18 | More by stoutlove77
Photo of TXHops
TXHops

Texas

3.98/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From www.victorybeer.com:
"Malts: imported, 2 row
Hops: American whole flowers
Alcohol by volume 9.1%"

Compared to Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout and Northcoast Old Rasputin, the Storm King has more obvious hops in the nose and more obvious alcohol in the flavor, giving the beer a fruity, vinous quality. For a full account of my feelings on the beer, check out my article on 3 Imperials...

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2003 21:12:58 | More by TXHops
Photo of Brent
Brent

Kentucky

4.53/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I had been saving this precious beer-trade for the "right time," and decided that my first beer of 2003 was a worthy reason. Since this beer has held the top rating spot for some time, I tried to reign in my expectations and approach it with an open mind.

Onyx black, with a dense coca-colored head, like cafe latte. I observed an interesting Guinness-like cascade effect in the head about half-way down, which stopped and left about half the head that stayed with the beer throughout. Wonderful aroma of deeply roasted malt and a touch of Mexican chocolate.

Flavor was dense with layers of roasted malt peeling away. High ABV was evident in a slight tingle at the tip of the tongue. Hops bitterness punched a hole through the wall of malt and announced itself at mid-tongue, with a thick, lasting bitterness at the finish.

I don't know that this is the best imperial style stout I've had, but it ranks in the top few.

Serving type: bottle

01-03-2003 11:05:48 | More by Brent
Photo of kelticblood
kelticblood

Massachusetts

3.83/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured a solid black with a coffee colored thick creamy head.Left generous amounts of brown lace.Great head retention reduced to half the size and stayed.The aroma is of hops,coffee,and malt.The texture of the taste is not as creamy as I'd like.A roasted coffee finish with a long lasting alcohol bitter aftertaste.Leaves a dry dehydrating taste probally due to the high ABV.A very good stout with a full body and personality.

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2003 23:06:28 | More by kelticblood
Photo of ZAP
ZAP

Minnesota

4.22/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Re-rate 1/2/03

I found this a bit disappointing on my second tasting...not bad at all but not at the level I originally placed it...a bit too thin and not enough overall flavor to be considered the best of the best...Very drinkable but not as complex as I remembered. I have readjusted my numbers slightly and re-worded my old review to reflect my current view

I have been eagerly anticipating this tasting all day,. Midnight black in color...soft creamy tan head...great aroma of dark cocoa...coffee beans...and husky hops...just a wonderfull creamy feeling in your mouth...Pretty good flavor, but not in the same class in this area as Bells Expedition which just overwhelms your buds...It has a very nice dark cocoa base but also has some good hopping that adds a strong bite on the finish..some real bitterness lingers on the long finish...Definitely not overly sweet...at different points the hopping seems real high, and then towards the end it seems to mellow down a tad...perhaps a bit thin...solid

Serving type: bottle

01-02-2003 20:51:59 | More by ZAP
Photo of Dantes
Dantes

New Jersey

4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Package: 12oz. bottle, labeled 9.1% ABV; bottled Oct. 15, 02. Nice description and Aztec-like mask on a blue-black label. No recommended serving temperature.

Cost: $7.99 a 6-Pack at Bottle King

Presentation: Imperial Pint glass at ~50º.

Appearance: Darkest brown, like Gabon ebony. Virtually opaque. Head was sparse and disappointing for a stout, resembled espresso crema. Faint gunsmoke. Subsequent pourings yielded better heads.

Smell: Burnt coffee and wood-resin aromas. Definite hops aroma. Alcohol.

Taste: The first taste was like cold espresso ristretto. Sensations of burnt coffee and semi-processed cacao nibs (Yes, I’ve eaten them). The alcohol pushed to the front, steamrolling over whatever other flavors might have been there. I didn’t register the flavors of fruit, tobacco, and chocolate noted below. I tasted the hops, but didn’t feel that this was over-hopped as many micros are. Sweetness expanded as my palate acclimated to the bitter coffee upfront. Medium, acrid finish.

Mouthfeel: Lacked the creaminess I expected. Somewhat thin.

Drinkability: Reasonable for its ABV. Not something which I'm likely to drink a lot.

I’m somewhat reluctant to write this review, because it diverges so much from the experiences of others and I'm a neophyte reviewer. In my defense, I tried three bottles of this in various situations, and consider stouts one of my favorite types. Of the three bottles, SK seemed best to me as an accompaniment to a meal of pan-seared filet mignon with shallot butter, baked potato, and salad. The richness of the beef countered the sharp edges of the beer, revealing more complexity. By itself, I was surprised that the alcohol was less integrated than in the Old Horizontal with a higher ABV, nor was it as luxurious. Alone, I felt that this was trying too hard to peg the meter in every category as opposed to achieving an integrated whole. I didn’t hate it but I didn’t love it either. Like “Charbucks” it thinks burnt is better (and I love coffee).

Backwash: This king has no clothes. I’m at a loss to explain my lack of affinity for this, as I agree with most other rankings. I think that this would be better on draught (as most beers are). All in all, I’d rather have a Samuel Smith’s Imperial Stout, Oatmeal Stout, or a Rogue Shakespeare. I plan to drink one more and cellar the last two. If I can get some other bottlings, I'll try those as well. Maybe I will come to my senses.

Serving type: bottle

12-30-2002 14:59:43 | More by Dantes
Photo of Lupe
Lupe

New York

4.58/5  rDev +12%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours pitch-black with no light able to come through. A creamy tan head sits atop the opaque liquid and leaves very nice lace all the way down the glass. An earthy hop aroma is present along with some espresso, dark chocolate, and roasted malt. Full bodied with a thick and creamy mouthfeel. Flavor starts with roasted malt and an hop bitterness. Smoothes out with some chocolate sweetness in the middle along with notes of coffee. Hops come back into play with an earthy and citrus character and finishes with some dark chocolate and lingering roasted flavors. Alcohol stays somewhere in the backround and does not assert itself until you look down that the bottom of the empty glass. Delicious and highly drinkable. A wonderful Imperial Stout, tastier and more drinkable that any I have had yet. Hail to Storm King!!

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2002 05:40:51 | More by Lupe
Photo of Gusler
Gusler

Arizona

4.53/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ah the magnificence of a “Stout” setting in its “Chalice”, the body all mysterious and the ebony color capped by a prodigious chocolate brown head, creamy and rich in its texture. As you sip, the lace makes fine curtains to obscure the glass from sight. Aromas of toasted malt, coffee, bittersweet chocolate can anything be better? Me thinks not “Bucko”. Bitter sweet at the start, the top creamy rich and thick as chocolate fudge, the finish pleasantly acidic the hops magisterial, and the aftertaste quite dry and long lasting, a real monster of a beer, and I wish I had a few dozen bottles stashed away, but alas not.

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2002 14:47:20 | More by Gusler
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
TheLongBeachBum

California

4.65/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Lovely-Jubbly!!

Pours as thick as melted wax, a black bitumen looking liquid that effervesces and settles with a nitrogenous looking separation that Guinness would be proud of. The head forms readily into a large brown mass, is well aerated, very crusty, bubbly and it laces the glass sides with eloquence. Head settles to a creamy 1/4” – but as thick as a “Navvies Slice”.
Nose, hold on – I get Chocolate Rice Crispies, the chocolate is so prevalent in the nose that I am now imagining a bowl of Rice Crispies sat in a pool of cool brown milk. Other aromas are malt, and er, well, erm… chocolate again. Hmmm. Tastes are chocolate at the beginning; cocoa powder in the middle, hoppy at the end, and the finish has a burnt roast twist and a lovely coffee bitterness. This must be what Cold “Hot” Chocolate tastes like.
I was so embroiled in drinking this beer that I took few Notes – so that’s it. One of my shortest Reviews.

Liquid Coffee Walnut Whip in a Glass. Young’s Chocolate Stout – eat yer heart out!!

9.1% - are you kidding me! Really!! Awesome. Very High Drinkability regardless.

“A bloody reet gud Staarrrt”, as we would say in Yorkshire, England.

Updated 12/25 : According to Rotsaruch, who knows much more about these things than me, as the bottle is undated (I checked several times) it was therefore a 2001 Vintage. So There!!

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2002 21:39:09 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of mzwolinski
mzwolinski

California

4.47/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Black with a thin, bubbly, and quickly dissipating dark brown head. The aroma is rich, alcohol, malt, earthy hops and some black cherry esters. Flavor is deep, roasty and coffeelike, with good hop flavor up front and enough bitterness at the finish to balance. Lingering sweet aftertaste. A very good beer, but it's not my favorite imperial stout. Flavor lacks both the depth and, well, *bigness* of many West Coast interpretations of this style. And when it comes to imperial stouts, bigness counts for a lot.

Serving type: bottle

12-19-2002 19:45:20 | More by mzwolinski
Photo of kunzbrew
kunzbrew

Massachusetts

5/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Well, I do not think I can add anthing about this beer that no one else has said. This is a great beer, the black color with the tan head that last and last. By far the best beer that I have ever tasted. Well it looks like I will be getting another sixer of this when I am in Syracuse. No wonder it is #1.

Enjoy

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2002 15:45:15 | More by kunzbrew
Photo of Riggo
Riggo

Oklahoma

3.93/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

With as much praise as this beer has gotten here at the Beer Advocate there is a slight difficulty in being objective when reviewing it. My solution is to describe it in the following way: This beer impressed me a great deal more than it charmed me. (The stout that charms me is Guinness Extra Stout.) Point is, the complexity and sheer brewing prowess is very evident with this beer; it's just a little too intense and in your face for me to be drinking too often.

The first thing you notice when this stout escapes from the bottle into your glass is the color--deep dark black. A tan, cocoa powder-colored head, creamy and luxurious. Scents of roasted grains, espresso, molasses, pine and, yes, bubblegum. The taste is a strong duet of bitter, piney hops and roasted espresso. Elements of anise and raisins with an oily, silky, full-bodied mouthfeel. On the palate the complexity of this beer is immediately recognizable and impressive indeed. (More than any other, this beer represents, for the American brewing tradition, the very opposite of beers like Bud and Miller, etc.) The combination of high abv and heavy hop presence leave a bitter bite on the back of the throat. This gets back to my distinction regarding being charmed and being impressed. The intensity of this beer is just a little much for my tastes but, nevertheless, I understand its respect on this site and think it is well-deserved. Victory is one of the very best American breweries and they rarely disappoint. The Storm King Stout is clearly a must try for any self-respecting American beer advocate.

Serving type: bottle

12-17-2002 21:36:07 | More by Riggo
Photo of UncleJimbo
UncleJimbo

Massachusetts

4.58/5  rDev +12%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I sampled a 12 oz bottle marked "Bottled on OCT 29 02" (therefore, about 2.5 months old).

The stout poured beautifully to give a very dark black/brown beverage with a nice light brown, long lasting head that clung to the glass as I drank it. I found this to be exceptional for a bottled stout.

The smell was very nice with a strong carmelized barley aroma with hints of licorice. The aroma was evident with each sip.

The taste was very strong, and it almost jumped off the tongue, with a strong, sharp heavily roasted barley flavor, very slight sweetness, and some nice hoppiness in the long-lingering aftertaste. The slight taste of alcohol was detectable in this strong brew. The mouthfeel was sharp and full bodied, but smooth.

As for drinkability, this stout is quite good, but because it is 9.1% abv, I hesitate to give it the highest score in this category.

Now I understand why this beer has received such good reviews.

Serving type: bottle

12-13-2002 17:14:43 | More by UncleJimbo
Photo of Mick
Mick

New Jersey

3.55/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This is very close to being an excellent offering. However, it falls short. Not because Victory doesn't care about their product, just this particular one has too high of a hop profile. Slow it down, although an Imperial Stout, still a stout. Concentrate more on the malt. There are far better representations of the style than this one.

However, it is a good beer overall. Pours black and forms a thin dark tan creamy head. Has a very noticeable hop flavor. Malty, but mildly so. Overall decent mouthfeel with a lackluster finish. It doesn't show-up the way imperial stout should. Nothing royal about it. I personally feel that is because of the high hop profile as it drowns out a lot of the what shoud be underlying tone. This stout would be far better if the hops were tuned down a little.

But, I am objective and would suggest this to most, especially hopheads, as it is not a bad beer just not what I think it should be.

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2002 10:17:53 | More by Mick
Photo of LarryV
LarryV

Massachusetts

4.4/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A fairly agressive pour resulted in a thin foamy head about 3/4" deep. It disappeared quickly though into the inky depths of this beer. The aroma is pleasant, no bitter undertones, chocolatey and inviting. Mouth feel is spot on with a pleasant creaminess. Coffee, chocolate, hops, maltiness, they're all there in the taste. Afterwards, the taste lingers for a long time on the palate. I didn't think the alchohol was that pronounced. It will most definitely sneak up on you however, this is a potent, tasty brew.

Serving type: bottle

12-08-2002 13:43:01 | More by LarryV
Photo of Dogbrick
Dogbrick

Ohio

4.58/5  rDev +12%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Another winner from Victory. Bottled on 10-25-02. Thanks to a great trade I got this one! Being a Stout lover I was really looking forward to this one and I was not let down. I was reminded of a cold cup of coffee as I poured, it was that color. Aroma of coffee, dried fruit and chocolate. Wood-burned flavor of malt, alcohol and espresso kept my interest throughout. I'd like to try a bottle that has aged a bit next time, because I have the feeling it would be even better. Thanks to Victory for living up to their name again!

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2002 12:34:58 | More by Dogbrick
Photo of maxpower
maxpower

Missouri

4.4/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dark jet black color, with a creamy tan head, leaves a clingy lace in the glass. Aroma of coffee, plums and licorice. Full thick creamy mouthfeel, starts sweet ends with a huge burnt bitterness, This is a great Imperial, I love it.

Serving type: bottle

11-30-2002 16:42:11 | More by maxpower
Photo of Jarod
Jarod

Pennsylvania

5/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

First I would like to say that I bought this keg on the recommendation of the BA. When poured into the glass it is BLACK, no light gets through. The head is thick, rich and a creamy mocha tan. It lasted. The lace was beautiful, the same color as the head, and it draped the inside to the last sip. The aroma was amazing and complex and intense. I nosed coffee, chocolate, berries (as it warmed), floral, malt and hops. The taste was amazing, full and smooth. I tasted chocolate, coffee, milk, fruit (berries), roasted malt and hops. Temperature plays a role in this beer. The warmer it got the more intense and distinct the flavors became. It starts off alittle sweet then all the flavors jump at you and then it has a dry long lasting finish. GREAT BEER

Serving type: on-tap

11-27-2002 09:30:00 | More by Jarod
Photo of AaronRed
AaronRed

New York

4.85/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is one truley amazing and unforgetable beer. I did not expect it to be this good. It poured jet black with a creamy tan head- laces all the way down the glass. Wonderful presence of aromas- chocolate, coffee and even sweet plumbs. The taste was great- strong bitterness chocolate and dark roasted malty tones. Vigorous and strong, the flavor never faded. Silky and smooth, yet powerful, this brew is among the best beer I have ever tasted.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2002 18:26:15 | More by AaronRed
Storm King Stout from Victory Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 4,483 ratings.