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

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

421 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 421
Reviews: 224
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 9.87%
Wants: 43
Gots: 36 | 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:
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 added by: xlperro on 08-20-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 421 | Reviews: 224 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Arbitrator
2.48/5  rDev -37.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Dark bottle into a glass.

A: Deep, opaque black with a short-lived tan head. Some rings of lacing down the glass.

S: Dark chocolate, roasted malt, and what smells like a tangy combination of plum, fig, and raisin, with a slight tartness. At first I thought this beer was infected or in the process of becoming so.

T: Dark chocolate on the initial taste, which leads into a roasted malt backbone adorned by coffee bitterness. The finish is dark fruits -- plums, figs, and raisins all detected -- with a noticeably tart aftertaste. It's an interesting flavor, but the combination of chocolate/coffee and full-on fruit is not one I enjoy. It was kind of like a fruit roll-up covered in Nutella. Again, I suspected infection at first given the poorly blended tartness.

M: Medium-to-high body, with medium carbonation. Still surprisingly velvety. Well masked ABV.

D: Definitely a sipper / sit-and-savor. But I didn't particularly enjoy the taste, and judging from others' comments, I seem to have gotten a proper bottle. I won't pick this up again -- not my sort of RIS.

Photo of ThirdLap
4.33/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Jupiter in Berkeley. I've had this before from the bottle, but this is my first time sampling it on-tap.

Deep black as it sits in my glass, with a short-lasting dark tan head. Not much lacing as the glass empties.

The nose is dark chocolate, roasted malt, and cola. Hints of dark fruit.

Taste is surprisingly complex. While not barrel-aged, there is a woodsy oakiness to it, which combined with the dark chocolate undertones and perceptible alcohol makes it remnisicient of stouts that have spent time in a bourbon barrel. I don't remember the bottle of Drake's Imperial Stout I had several months ago having this characteristic.

Body is medium-high, with the carbonation right in the middle. Mouthfeel is creamy and luscious, with a slight bitter finish. Drinkability is excellent, as it took some effort for me to sit and savor this one.

I will have to try this again from the bottle for comparison, but from what I can remember, this is a different beast from the tap. Very nice.

Photo of macktbone
4.22/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Jupiter in Berkeley along with Rasputin on Nitro and some great pizza.

Looks like a very dark beer. The head is some what limited but a beautiful milk chocolate color. Looks a bit thin.

Just after serving the coldness of the beer limits the nose, but as it warms the dark fruits and bitter chocolat starts to sneak out.

The taste of this is really suprising. Imagine a small chocolate, shaped like a treasure chest, and inside is Glen Levitt liquor scotch. This beer has a unique tast to it that suprises with each and every sip. I can't get over the whiskey flavor behind this local brew. The after taste turns to a bitter chocolate that kind of slides down your throat.

Unfortunately the mouthfeel of this beer is lacking. Very thin and could benefit from some oatmeal texture. With some more thickness this beer could be a supreme contender with others on the top ten Imperial Stout list.

It is worth a try for anyone that likes bourbon type stouts. My first time trying it and I would have it again ...I hear it's much bettr on tap that in the bottle...maybe I'll try it out.
Not something that you can down, a sipper for sure.

Photo of gford217
4.35/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500mL swingtop courtesy of thequeue poured into a snifter.

Pours a dark, dark chocolate that settles in black in the glass underneath a huge fluffy tan head that shows very good staying power. Sheets of lacing form after each sip. This is quite a nice looking RIS.

The aroma has tons of dark roasted chocolate malts and lots of dark fruit sweetness with figs and raisins. I'm also picking up lots of licorice and a bit of espresso as well.

The flavor starts with the slight bitterness of the bakers chocolate with some dark fruit sweetness. The dark roasted malts form a solid backbone and the finish brings in a touch of hop bitterness and hints of coffee.

This mouthfeel is very smooth with lots of carbonation and just coats the mouth completely.

Well, this one really impressed me and maybe my expectation were a little too low. It's a great representation of the style and I think this bottle has just the right amount of age on it. Very nice.

Photo of DefenCorps
4.15/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Drank this a couple of nights back. What a great beer! This is last years release, I grabbed it at Healthy Spirits in May and sat on it for a while.

A: In my Sam Smith pint glass, this beer gurgled a very impressive jet black with a thin dark brown head with decent retention

S: Wonderfully balanced on the nose, there's chocolate, coffee, cream and a little bit of oxidation that works very well with the chocolate

T/M: On the palate, the flavors from the nose are replicated with the semi-dark unsweetened chocolate leading the way. Oxidation is present and very enjoyable. Medium bodied with a soft carbonation, this beer finishes thick and enjoyable

D: This is one beer that surprised me, I think I should grab another at some point

Photo of bbothen
4.35/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On cask at The Rose & Crown in Palo Alto. Thanks Kasim.

Pours out a deep & dark brown/almost black color with a big bubbly & creamy tan colored head.

Big coffee & chocolate aromas, roasted malts, some fruitiness, and faint hoppiness. All balanced quite nicely. Yum.

Like the nose the taste is of roasted/toasted malts, and nice coffee & chocolate flavors, and some bitter hoppiness. I likey.

Medium to full, smooth, creamy, slick, velvety. Yeah.

This is a great beer & awesome on cask. Could drink this all night. And day. Work is stupid. I quit and am going to have one of these.

Photo of mossadacity
4.3/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a rich dark brown, almost black. Persistent strong head, but little lacing. Strong licorice flavor, subtle bitter chocolate and coffee undertones. Bitter aftertaste which quickly faded away after a few sips. Very heavy beer; it's been a while since I really felt like I was drinking food :-) I absolutely loved this beer. I'm pretty new to the style, but this is the first RIS I liked let alone loved.

On cask at the Rose and Crown in Palo Alto, CA - 2-17-2009.
First pint ($6) off a fresh tap :-) Given that it runs for $7/16.9 oz bottle at the local BevMo, I was absolutely thrilled to try it draft.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.05/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

2006 release, acquired via trade from IntriqKen, so a big "Thank you" goes out to him. Poured from a 500ml swing-top bottle into an imperial pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color with a no head no lace due to the age.

S: The aroma is of chocolate, coffee and roasted malts with a faint touch of hops.

T: The taste is malty with flavors of chocolate and coffee. There's also a mild background of dark fruit and a very mild hops presence. The after-taste is slightly sweet. It definitely tastes like I might have held onto this one a bit too long.

M: Smooth but not crisp and kind of watery, medium body, very little carbonation, slightly sticky finish.

D: Flavorful and I'm sure it would have been pretty tasty fresh, not too filling, good kick, good representation of style, I'm hoping to someday revisit this beer as I fear I may have ruined a good beer.

Photo of lhaqq
4.5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Pours pretty much pitch-black with a sticky tan head with good lacing.
S: Smells of dark chocolate and coffee.
T: Coffee not as strong in the taste, though it does finish with a small twinge of coffee bitterness, along with a dry, woody flavor. The backbone of the flavor however, is a non-bitter dark chocolate mixed with some light caramel.
M: Thick, heavy, creamy, good level of carbonation. Great when served cool or after having warmed up.
D: Definitely my favorite imperial stout that I have had so far. Little alcohol present in the flavor or feel--quite drinkable, especially for a style that I usually find is not the best in terms of drinkability.

Photo of John_M
4.13/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Toronado today.

The beer pours a very dark brown color with good head retention and lacing. I don't get a lot on the nose, just some light sweet roasted malt and a hint of hoppiness. On the palate however, this beer is just delicious. The beer is loaded with wonderful coffee, chocolate and licorise, with some noticeable hoppy bitterness in the finish. This is yummy stuff. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and the beer has a moderately long finish. Abv. is pretty well disguised, though certainly you wouldn't want to have more then one or two of these. The alcohol tended to become more and more noticeable as I went along, though at no point did it become tiring or heavy on the palate. All that being said, this is still a pretty substantial stout and is not the sort of thing I can imagine drinking a lot of. Nevertheless, I really enjoyed this stout from Drake's. Not bad a all. :-)

Photo of Irie
4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pitch black body with a heavy light brown head. Great retention and lacing on the head with fairly small fluffy bubbles.
Rich smell with heavy malts and molasses with a nut finish.
Great light feel on the pallet with a coffee/toffee flavor with a strong grain finish.
Great drink, nice and light taste with a heavy finish. Nice balance though a bit strong on the malt side, but delicious none-the-less.
Good times.

Photo of magictrokini
4.45/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

An incredible beer. Pours 10w40 black with a small but thick tan head. Heavy aroma of coffee, baker's chocolate, and cappucino. So many flavors that are balanced perfectly. The crystal malt and chocolate are dominant, but don't overshodow the coffee, oatmeal, and the mild hops. This only got better as the beer warmed. A huge, thick mouthfeel. One of the best.

Photo of aerozeppl
4.43/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured black with a creamy looking 2 fingers of mocha head. A little bit of lacing on the glass.

S: Really nice nose with a mix of roasted grain, chocolate, coffee, and a faint hint of hops.

T: Really smooth and complex. The transition from each taste to the next is seemless. Roast right up front then right into a really nice and rich chocolate blast. Finished smooth with some roasted barley.

M: Velvety mouthfeel. Really nice. I think the time on this bottle really helped it out but cannot be sure as I never had this fresh.

D: Really good. We split a bottle and I wanted more. Thanks to dmeadows for sharing this and for giving us a home gym to work off the beer!

Photo of bigbelcher
4.3/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Found this and some other Drakes Barrel aged beers while going through the bottle cooler at the Freaking Frog in Las Vegas. Note-They were not on the list of available bottled beers. The beer had a nice roasted malt aroma with hints of chocolate a fruity aroma. Very smooth and well aged. Some roasted malt flavor but very drinkable. Alcohol was present but not overpowering. Pretty nice overall. Only drawback is that its body is a little on the thin side.

Photo of Dogbrick
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to mmmmBEEEER for sharing a bottle. The beer pours black with a wispy light beige head that disspates to almost nothing rather quickly. Spotty lace. Roasted coffee and chocolate in the nose, along with a bit of black licorice. Full, smooth body that falls a bit short on carbonation. Flavors of roasted malt, chocolate and coffee along with a bit of plum. The finish is roasty with mild hops and coffee lingering. Pretty solid all around, although overall it falls short of the best-in-class Imperial Stouts out there.

Photo of popery
4.03/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Now, let me first say I like the beer very well. It's not the greatest Russian Imperial Stout, but it would probably have a higher score if they upped the abv a bit and went for a somewhat bigger flavor. This beer pours a big black with a nice foamy head. The nose is sweet and malty with chocolate and mild smoke notes. The flavor is coffee, chocolate, vanilla and some good balancing bitterness. The feel is just a notch below excellently smooth, but it's not quite there. It's a RIS with a low abv, which might make it physically easy to drink but it is missing some of the complexity of a bigger beer. Whether or not, this precisely fits the undefinable "drinkability" isn't going to keep up nights. At any rate, the presentation is great. The pirate theme fits well with the big hearty stout and the bottling choice.

Photo of hopdog
4.03/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this one a couple times and both from bottle.

Poured a dark black with an averaged sized brown head. Aromas and tastes of chocolate, molasses, vanilla and roasted malts. Very light bitter finish with light alcohol.

The second time around I also noted some smokiness and dark fruits.

Photo of Georgiabeer
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice and underrated Imperial Stout. Pours black with a nice thick tan head that sticks around as a cap and leaves some nice lacing. Has a good dose of hoppy bitterness in the aroma as well as a deep roastiness, some licorice, and some vinous notes at the end. Its a touch hot, but other than that very nice. Nice deep roasty notes and some nice deep bitter chocolate flavors as well as some late creaminess. Very nice flavors indeed, and although its a big beer, the heat is warming rather than harsh in the mouth. Nicely integrated while still intense. Smooth finish and relatively easy to drink, with a very nice lingering bitter chocolate finish.

Photo of joe1510
3.8/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml Bottle

I received this RIS from errantnight in yet another great trade, thanks Derek! Drake's RIS pours pitch black without a glint of light coming through the snifter. The soft pour produced two fingers of dense beige head that stuck around throughout the session. The carbonation crept up the sides of the glass to keep the hearty head rejuvenated and replace what was left behind as sticky lace after each drink.

Big roasty malts jump from the glass as soon as this beer is poured. Dark berries make a strong showing with dark chocolate and coffee grounds bringing up the rear. As this beer warms there's a strange hot rubber and rubbing alcohol combo that becomes noticeable. The roastiness still rules the roost but these strange aromas keep on popping up where they shouldn't. There's a little coffee and cream way back there.

The flavor of this beer is nothing like the aroma. The burnt rubber and fusel alcohol are non existent in the flavor while the coffee grounds pop. Thick, rich and dense dark chocolate coat the tongue while the roastiness and coffee grounds add some life and a touch of bitterness. The dark berries come through on the finish and make for a damn good RIS. I'm glad the flavor profile is so much different then the nose suggested.

The mouthfeel is right where it should be. The body leans toward the heavier side while the carbonation is soft and mellow allowing this beer to work through slowly and coat the tongue. The alcohol leaves a touch of heat on the back of the throat.

This stout goes down pretty easy and the 500ml bottle isn't enough. Give me a few more ounces and I'll be a happy man.

Drake's RIS was on my "wants" list for a long time and I'm glad I finally got the chance to try it. I'd give this one another go around any day of the week. Thanks for hooking it up Derek!

Photo of mj001jk
4.25/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Black and dark with a creamy hazelnut head. The aromas of chocolate, coffee and cream waft out of the glass. Lots of chocolate/caramel and thus very dessert-like on the nose.

Initially the foam is sweet and creamy but a dark beast of flavor is ready to be released as the sip rolls towards the back of my mouth. Full on roasted character with a sweet tinge, roasted marshmallows and hazelnut dip comes to mind.

The rich and coating flavors are nicely buffered by the freshness and lack of cloying character. Hops are subtle and do their magic as such. This is very easy to drink despite the knowledge that just a couple will put me out...

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Roasted coffee bean black with highlights that are just barely visible along the bottom edge of the glass... and then only with bright backlighting. A thick slab of brown sugar colored foam deposits finely pocked sheets of lace when it finally begins to fade.

The nose is impressively roasted and isn't especially hoppy. That's okay, Drake's doesn't need to hop the hell out of all their beer (although I wouldn't mind a bit). A slight power deficit might be remedied as the beer continues to warm.

Oddly enough, Imperial Stout lacks aggressiveness on the palate as well. It's still a good RIS, but the next highest score is not being seriously considered. Maybe a few more hop cones would have been the way to go. Either that or more roasted malt. Or, better yet, both.

The flavor is more reminiscent of roasted barley in general than cocoa or coffee per se. While there's nothing wrong with that, it gives the beer a pretty straightforward flavor profile. Let's go with melted Hershey bars, coffee with cream, vanilla and molasses. Okay, so maybe it isn't so simple after all.

The mouthfeel is fine... for a 7.0% stout. The lower than usual ABV (for the style) keeps things on the light side of average, keeps unmasked alcohol from spoiling the party, and keeps drinkability high.

Every one of the Drake's Brewing Company beers that I've reviewed so far has been impressive in one way or another. DIS may not be a gobsmacker of an RIS, but it's a worthwhile version that I'd love to drink again.

Photo of slayer3604
4.33/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A- Very murky, tan head, and faint hints of a red hue on the outer-most parts of the glass

S- Muted nose, that such of chocolate pop tarts

T- Marshmellow, chocolate, cocoa, raisen, over ripe cherry and a nice little chunk of bitter bight

M- Creamy and gorgeous. this beer is awesome.

D- Going to pick some more up tomorrow! the bottle is bad ass too!

Photo of deltatauhobbit
3.98/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to flexabull for including this interesting RIS in the UGLY Duckling BIF, I really like the bottle too!

Pours a dark brown/black color with no light being able to penetrate, a great sized head that fades slowly to leave some patchy lacing, good retention.

Smell has a good roasted malt aroma, slight coffee presence, some dark fruit but very subtle.

Taste is mostly roasted malt, bit of a coffee bitterness in the aftertaste, decent creaminess but surprisingly a bit thin for the style.

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.78/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark with a real thin tan head. Nose is coffee and sickly sweet malts. Too sweet really. Flavor is nice and robust, yes. There is coffee, yes. But the sweetness of the whole thing is just too much of a kick in the mouth. There's also that odd almost citrus back tone. Feel is slick on liquid and the carbonation is lower but smooth. IMO this is lacking the right balance to be able to pull it off. Perhaps it needs some time to even out, but I guess I'll never know since this is the only bottle I have. Oh well.

Photo of orcasteve
3.58/5  rDev -9.4%
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.

Drake's Drakonic Imperial Stout from Drake's Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 421 ratings.