1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Drake's Drakonic Imperial Stout - Drake's Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Drake's Drakonic Imperial StoutDrake's Drakonic Imperial Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

438 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 438
Reviews: 226
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 9.87%
Wants: 44
Gots: 46 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Drake's Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  8.75% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: xlperro on 08-20-2003

Drake's Drakonic Imperial Stout - 8.75% ABV, 40 IBUS
A big, malty beast of a beer that exemplifies the way we roll here at Drake's. Two-row malt is blended with Chocolate malt, roasted barley, and dark Crystal malts to make up the grist. Only one hop addition, Columbus, is added for bittering, allowing the abundance of malt in this beer to shine through. Enjoy the dense brownish head, the silky maltiness, and flavors of licorice, coffee and chocolate, rounded out with a slightly dry finish. here's to those who don't fear the mighty!
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 438 | Reviews: 226 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tswater
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of beernads
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of sbanacho
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of NYR_Rob
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of cmgage
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of atpca
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of kiya
3.52/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

The first thing i noticed about this beer was the flip top that has been used to seal the beer at the bottling plant, as opposed to a having a traditional beer bottle cap, and then a flip top that can be used to reseal the beer. Once opened you're greeted with a louder than usual champagne bottle pop that releases an interesting aroma of a brew that isn't going to let you pass it by.

It pours a short but dense tan head which does shorten quickly but never fully dissipates through-out the tasting, holding it's composure well.

The aroma was the most impressive element of this beer for me. Stirring thoughts of freshly roasted espresso beans, warm molasses, and gingerbread. It was quickly apparent that the ABV was going to really give quite a kick due to the sharp initial aroma, before forming into a more subdued roasted scent.

After the enticing scents i was sort of expecting a smokier taste than what it offered. A mouthfeel that was large and round, and an alcohol bite in the back of the throat definitely could have been calmed down with some bolder dark fruit undertones which were, in my opinion, missing for the most part. it's a big beer, and definitely holds up well against other imperial stouts, but could use some bolder flavors besides the cocoa and licorice to even out some of the tingle from the alcohol. All in all, a good stout, and as the bottle says "A pint a day keeps the scurvy away". With a beer this strong in so many senses, i'd sure hope it keeps the scurvy away.

Photo of AleWatcher
3.54/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bomber into Founders snifter. Served at cellar temp.

I think I got this from sideswipe a long time ago... Just getting around to it.
Gave myself a pour and after a quick smell/taste/look, the rest went into my chilli pot.

Looks thin.
Feels thin.
Smells surprisingly boozy for the relatively low ABV...

Lots of chocolate and roasty malt notes. No hops. Very little bitterness. The malt profile (and body!) remind me of Sierra Nevada Porter?!
The profile is missing something. I don't know exactly what-- I just know that I find this to be pretty mediocre.

Big chalky feel-- especially on the finish. Little boozy heat.

Overall-- meh. It isn't bad, but it it isn't very good either. Hopefully it works better in my chilli than in my glass.

Photo of Fatehunter
3.55/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A thin head on a pitch black colored body.
The aroma is boozy and burnt wood. Smells like darkness.
The taste is roasted and burnt malt with a good dry"ness" to it. The finish has a tingling of alcohol.
The texture is soft, but thick with low to moderate carbonation.
It's a fine enough imperial stout with a good profile.

Photo of IRONRakkasan
3.55/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This brew was molasses in a bottle...but damn good.

Barely any head with lacing through the finish. No light is getting through this bad boy. I got a dried cherry/cranberry nose.

As far as the flavor goes, I figured it was as if a few cherries were steeped in a nice French Roast pot o' coffee. The light carbonation worked well, and on the whole the 8.75% ABV was hidden nicely. Was planning on a jog later....but that idea was quickly scrapped.

While a lot of Imperial Stours for me leave a terrible aftertaste, this one was mellow while leaving that dark roasted coffee flavor.

Definitely recommended.

Photo of orcasteve
3.56/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a bit sweet to start, robust in the middle almost like coffee, then a rush of hop and ruff alcohol at the end. a good siping beer that got better the warmer it got. this has a taste that stickes with you for awhile. i think that this one would make great french onion soup and would make a great complement to a big meal. try this one, it is worth it.

Photo of EliottJW
3.59/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I have to start off by saying I was a bit let down by this beer. Drakes has been extremely hit or miss for me. their IPA is absolutely one of my favorites, but the 1500 was a complete let down.

The pour on this beer absolutely leaves something to be desired... it's not nearly as dark as I would expect from an imperial stout and a rather vigorous pour produces practically no head. while there was a touch of lacing left by the big, soapy bubbles that formed a crown, even swirling my glass did practically nothing in the way of producing any head.

smelled fine enough. some sweet, roasty malts. a hint of chocolate and some apparent coffee. The nose was definitely the highlight of this beer.

taste was a different story. I don't want to say that it was necessarily complex, I think that would be a touch misleading... but I will say that it was kind of all over the place. It started out quite estery... dark fruits... prunes and the such. after about 4-5 seconds gave way to a hint of chocolate and then almost immediately moved into HEAVILY roasted malts. I'm wanting to type out that it was burnt coffee, but that wasn't quite the quality that I got... it was burnt something... just all together too roasty for me. eventually, the roasty quality became someone enjoyable as an aftertaste... but I don't drink a beer solely for its aftertaste.

mouth fell a bit short as well. while it was nice and creamy, it was entirely too thin. I can't say too much beyond that. I want a heavier body on anything categorized as "imperial".

while this beer wasn't "bad", it also wasn't "good". I guess I'll leave it at that.

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.59/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a black body with a very, very thin tan-colored head.

Smell: Lush, malty aroma of sweet-smelling chocolate with subtle notes of coffee and dark fruits.

Taste: Bittersweet chocolate and coffee dominate the taste. There's an easily discernible sourness to it. The roasted character combines with the hop bitterness and a chalky ashen quality to make for an odd finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Mild carbonation.

Drinkability: Right, then. Well, it looked and smelled just fine, but, for me, it was all downhill after that.

Photo of JupiterJesus
3.6/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle, served in newcastle schooner glass.

Completely pitch black with no highlights. Thick creamy head that sticks around a while. Thick lacing.

Smell is alcohol/bourbon, coffee/roast and spice, like cinnamon (hops?).

Flavor is extremely roasty bitter, coffee, alcohol and spice. A tiny bit of baking chocolate, mostly in the finish, but relatively little chocolate going on. A bit of herbal, with a finish on the tongue that is sharp and numbing, almost like a breath mint.

Mouth feel is thick, even for an imperial stout. The numbing character is strange, and makes it difficult to continue judging the beer.

Smoother alcohol character than Old Rasputin (my favorite imp stout) but not as drinkable, mostly due to the minty numbness I got after only a few sips. A good sipper though, would go great with dessert.

Photo of Goblinmunkey7
3.6/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to angrybabboon for sharing the bottle.

Appearance: Pours a nice rich dark brown/black. Small tan head is creamy with decent retention. Small splotches of lacing. Moderate carbonation.

Smell: Loaded with licorice and cocoa. Nice roasted barley coupled with some sweet caramelized malts. A hint of dark fruit with a huge chocolate malt backbone. Breadybwith a touch of alcohol on the back. Some blackberry and old coffee beans. A touch of burnt malt as well. Minimal hopping with a faint herbal/citrus component. Very sweet, but not sugary or overbearing.

Taste: Slightly burnt with cocoa and a ton of bitter baker's chocolate. Deeply roasted with some caramel and chocolate malt. Some milky chocolate and chocolate cake. Hops are light and offer some herbal touches. Slight touches of char and dark fruit. Dark cherry with some blackberry Warming tamps down on some of the sweetness and pushes a bunch more cocoa. Burnt with some char. Oh, and a ton of licorice.

Mouthfeel: Nice and creamy with a medium body and moderate carbonation.

Overall: Pseudomilitant.

A nice imperial stout. A good balance of malt flavors with a good depth. Warming allows it to really show it's depth. I'm going to need a few bottles for aging.

Photo of BradBLR
3.61/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a dark chocolate color with almost no light being seen through it. The head was a very dark brown that was very think and lasted the entire beer with great lacing. The aroma of this beer was a little weak for an imperial stout, but there were hints of toasted malt, chocolate, caramel, coffee, and a slight hint of hops.

The taste of this beer was pretty good. A nice malty flavor with hint of toasted malt and a slight hint of coffee. The was a fair amount of hops at the end, but nothing that would blow you away. The mouthfeel was pretty good with a good amount thickness, but the CO2 was a little too strong. Not the smoothest RIS I've had, but not bad.

All in all not a bad beer and it cam in a 16.9 oz. bottle, so it was easy to drink this at one sitting and not get too hammered. If your are in to RIS's give this one a try.

Photo of jlb502
3.62/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Price: $5.99 for a 22oz

Smell: Chocolate and nutty, kind of like chocolate covered peanuts. A faint perfumy fruit/floral smell that comes out more as it warms. It's actually kind of pleasant and delicate, two words I don't usually use to describe imperial stouts.

Taste: Bitter chocolate. Unsweetened milk chocolate, if that exists, but it does sweeten up somewhat as it warms. Peanuts again. It's more peanut pieces and skins that whole peanuts. Come on, you know there's a difference. A little bit of hop/plantiness in the background.

Mouthfeel: Nice creaminess but maybe a touch more carbonation than it needs. Not over-carbed by any means but I wouldn't mind it scaled back just a little bit. Could also use a little more body.

Overall: This beer seems like a lighter take on the imperial stout, which is a nice change of pace. I got some interesting floral and fruit notes, which if explored more, I think could really heighten the beer. If you're reading this Drakes, feel free to add some roses and/or cherries. Sounds weird but I think it could work.

Photo of riotontheroad
3.66/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of brentk56
3.66/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a dark coffee color but, uh-oh, there is no head

Smell: Rich dark mocha aroma with some cereal undertones

Taste: Starts out with a black bread flavor that adds some coffee bitterness and chocolate elements, mid-palate; after the swallow, the flavors are primarily bittersweet chocolate

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body but flat

Drinkability: Despite the plastic wrapper around the swing top being intact, somehow this beer lost all of its carbonation; the flavors were nice but it lacked some complexity that I would expect from an Imperial Stout

Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3.67/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: Funky and rather attractive Half Litre (500 ml, 16.9 fl.oz.) brown glass bottle that has a short, wide & squat body with a tall neck complete with a familiar but nevertheless distinctive white ceramic swing top arrangement. Main label is as per the BA Avatar; a large Sailing Ship with sails fully released has the words “A Pint a Day Keeps Scurvy Away”. Some information on the left hand side of the includes ‘Original Gravity of 21.5°P by a Malt Bill of 91% Malted Barley, 4% Crystal Malt, 3% Roasted Barley and 2% Chocolate Malt. Chinook Hops were added to balance the Beer…weighs in at a robust 8.75% Alc. by Vol.”
No freshness Date but the Bottle really does look very cool I have to say.

Appearance: Thick black oily resinous pour that positively oozes into the Stone Imperial Russian Stout Glass I had ready. Tan colored head rose quickly but soon dissipated to a thin covering, that eventually broke to reveal only a thick bubbles halo ring. Minimal carbonation.

Nose: The nose takes some work, though it does improve with some heat input. Chocolate malts dominate with some toasted coffee and a very light hop character. As it warms the roast coffee improves the nose and allows the hops and alcohol to come through to the front more.

Taste: Very bitter start, the Chinook hops immediately make their presence known though they tussle with a strong roast coffee and dark chocolate middle. The back is tart and somewhat alcohol laden with a sour twist in the swallow. Sharp tastes that need to be rounded off, for they are a little prickly and harsh at present.

Mouthfeel: Big. Lots of Malt and Alcohol ensures that this Imperial Stout gives you something to chew on, even after the swallow. Bitter malty finish and lingering harsh hop infused alcohol on the tongue long after the beer is gone.

Drinkability: Nice roasted start, but this is a little bit harsh at the moment in the middle and a tad raw in the back end. Nice enough last of the night beer and it finished me good, so much so I forgot to post this Review at the time I did it!! Needs a little more time to improve the Drinkability I feel.

Overall: I suspect I drank this one a bit fresh and that the harsh hop character and alcohol will start to smooth out and round off into a more palatable brew given as little as another 6 months. Worth buying and keeping one to experiment with in the Cellar I think. Age will certainly mature and improve this for sure.

Photo of DaveHS
3.68/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours black with dark stained wood highlights and over an inch of rocky cola brown head. Leaves spidery lacing.

S-Milk chocolate, cocoa powder, light roastiness. A deep whiff exposes very light traces of phenolic booziness.

T/M-Fairly thin, and surprisingly light, given the style. There's a delicate roasted maltiness that runs through this, adding a nice contrast to the mild milk chocolate sweetness. Simple and very easy to drink. Medium bodied with moderate carbonation.

O-I usually prefer beers in this style to be more complex, but this was a nice surprise. A great alternative to your average heavy, rich RIS.

Photo of kojevergas
3.68/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a Guinness goblet in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are high. Served refrigerator cold and allowed to warm over time. Not paired with food.

A: Pours a one finger head of light tan colour, good cream, good thickness, and pretty good retention for the ABV. Colour is a nontransparent solid black.

Sm: Chocolate, light hops, licorice, and coffee. A light to mild strength aroma.

T: Chocolate, some light licorice, toffee, coffee, and fudge. The chocolate note here is the most reminiscent note of real chocolate I've ever experienced in a beer; usually chocolate notes are merely cocoa. It's quite nicely balanced and built. I like it. Some layering is present. Complex enough. More hoppy than expected. The climax is a marvelous blend of licorice and chocolate. A caramel tone underlies the entire profile.

Mf: Smooth and wet, with some dryness on the open and finish. Not too thick nor too thin, but never quite right. Not too sharp or overcarbonated. Could use far more cream and a bit more coarseness. Decently done as it is, but in need of fine tuning.

Dr/Ov: Very drinkable for the high ABV and the style. I like it a lot, but with some work it could be stellar. A nice imperial stout that is worthy of any beer fanatic's time and money. Bravo. I look forward to trying more beers from this brewery.

B

Photo of AgentMunky
3.69/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle into a St. Bernardus goblet.

A: Two fingers of delicate, light brown head top a black, dark, opaque beer. Great lacing.

S: Roasted malts, slightly thin, with a hint of coffee but not much else.

T: Above average, nothing more. A rather disappointing imperial stout. The most superlative quality is the drying, citrus-bitter Columbus hops that offer superlative balance. Otherwise, it's sweetish chocolate malt; light, roasted bitterness; and nutty coffee on the very endtaste. The aftertaste is creamy.

M: Smooth, full-bodied, and, at times, hoppy dry. Nice.

O: Very well balanced and mild. A very well put-together beer. A gentler, if not subtler, imperial stout that comes moderately recommended.

Photo of kbuzz
3.7/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz omber into my trusty snifter. No date to be found.

A: Pours an intensely thick, opaque black color. A one finger creamy mocha head fades quickly. Alcohol legs are present.

S: Massive roasted malts. Bittersweet baker's chocolate. Some faint vanilla and burnt rown sugar. A touch of coffee, but not too much.

T/M: A lesser version of the nose. Very sweet and chocolately. The roastiness gets lost somewhere in the back. And there's no coffee tast to speak of. A decent bitter hop presence. Very rich and creamy...definitely full-bodied. Leaves a coating on the palate after the swallow. Just a touc of alcohol presence - more in warmth than taste.

O: Kind of a mellow overall version of a RIS. Very palatable and easy drinking considering the ABV. The mouthfeeel is wonderful, but I'd like to get just a bit more roastiness or even some coffee in the taste.

Photo of tpd975
3.7/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a dark flat black hue with a nice mocha head. Nice spotty lace as well.

S: Aroma of coffee, chocolate, vanilla, caramel, wood, earth, dried dark fruit, and citrus hops.

T: The flavor is nice and roasty, with hints of chocolate. Loads of dark fruits in the middle, with a touch of licorice.

M: Full bodied, very rich with nice balanced carbonation.

D: Not too bad. Tasty but there are better Imperial stouts to be had.

Drake's Drakonic Imperial Stout from Drake's Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 438 ratings.