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

Drake's Drakonic Imperial StoutDrake's Drakonic Imperial Stout

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

361 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 361
Reviews: 214
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 9.87%

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: 361 | Reviews: 214 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of poluti


3.7/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16.9 ounce bottle.
I tried this beer at the brewery but didn't rate it because of the bbq and fun in the air (not a good time for one of my sessions). So I picked up a flip-top at BevMo and gave it a shot.

It's a dark brown almost black in appearance. Carbonation bubbles ran up the side into the tan frothy head. Fantastic head retension. This beer looked gorgeous but not perfect (too much head).
Alcohol was evident in the waft, however, that is typical for many beers of this style. There was not much of a hoppy aroma to balance out the dark roasted and chocolate malts that are very prevalent. As I stuck my nose into the glass, I noted that not much had changed from the waft. I would have to say after looking at the beer, the scent was a little bit dissapointing.
Roasted and Chocolate malts REALLY come out in this beer. I enjoyed them but I really wished they had more hops than the bittering Chinook to counteract them. It is fairly well balanced, but considering many beers I have had for this style, I would consider it a little above average.
This beers coats the tongue very well. Carbonation is very prevalent throughout the tasting process. I love the thickness and how the entire flavor stays in the mouth several minutes after the last sip.
This beer is very drinkable. As previously stated, I wish it had more and different kinds of hops to give it more of an Imperial Stout feel. However, I know several people that would enjoy this beer as opposed to the Imperial Stouts I would typically brew and purchase.

Serving type: bottle

02-18-2006 02:02:01 | More by poluti
Photo of Dukeofearl


4.4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Growler bought from HH on 1/28/06 for $12.99. Review primarily from growler, but my fiancee had it on tap that day; this review includes notes from that tasting as well.

A very pretty dark brown; a good sized frothy tan head from the tap, fairly non-carbonated from the growler. Loses its carbonation easily.

Aroma is rich, sweet, heavy vanilla and chocolate, with roasted malts galore. Flavor follows through with roasty, almost burnt notes and a light espresso quality. More sweet and creamy than dry. Very rich mouthfeel, very drinkable. Alcohol is nicely hidden. I'm not a huge stout fan, but this is a very good one!

Serving type: growler

01-29-2006 22:31:40 | More by Dukeofearl
Photo of germaniac


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

An interesting stout in a cool 16.9 oz. bottle.

Leaves the bottle in a syrupy rush. Roastiness is immediately apparent, along with a candybar chocolate and caramel sweetness. Hints of coffee in there, too. Tastes of chocolate, with a quick bitterness mellowing into a rich malted sweetness. Very drinkable, if you can find it. From the Sacramento BevMo.

Serving type: bottle

12-03-2005 05:53:59 | More by germaniac
Photo of donnebaby

North Carolina

4.18/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Looks are fairly unimpressive. As black as one could imagine with a collar of tan cream. Nose is big and winey, like a dry cabernet, Vanilla cream and coffee soda lightly sweet background.

Taste is pretty wild. Big balsamic vinegar taste reminiscent of the Duchesse, salty and addicting. Sour lemon and fruity red wine. Perfect touch of hops placed in the after, which fades crisply.

On the light side, as far as body goes, which fits well with the sharp sourness and astringency of the brew. Drinkable, certainly, especially as the high ABV goes, and with the vinegar even more.

Serving type: bottle

05-03-2005 05:55:19 | More by donnebaby
Photo of sulldaddy


4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of my secret bunny goodies! I am sampling the beer at room temperature in a pint glass.
The beer pours motor oil dark and no light passes through the glass when held to the light. A tan frothy head foams up about 2cm and fades quickly to an edge layer. Aroma is failry mild with some chalky chocolate scents mixing with a bit of roasted malt and a small hint of raisiny dark fruit.
First sip reveals a fairly robust body with fine tingly carbonation.
The flavor is very malty with strong roasted profile and some chocolate and even a hint of coffee flavor as well. The label mentions chinook hops to balance the malt but I find no evidence of hops on the nose or flavor.
The beer is very smooth and I only get a hint of the ABV by the warming in my belly, no bitey hot alcohol here in a beer that is 8.75% I think that is pretty well crafted.
Overall a solid Imp Stout.

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2005 03:31:14 | More by sulldaddy
Photo of NeroFiddled


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

Drake's Imperial Stout delivers the typical appearance that you'd expect, although the head retention could be a little bit better.

The nose is quite nice with clear wafts of caramel and toasty malts that aren't always distinguishable in other examples amidst the heavier roasted and chocolatey notes; and it has a really pleasurable coffee-bean aroma that's somewhat soothing. Piney hops skirt to and fro; they're a non-traditional choice, but they seem to work here. Some alcohol is present, but it's kept in check; and a breath of berry-like yeasty fruitiness rounds it out nicely.

In the mouth, an initial, delicate zest gives way to creamy and smooth maltiness - awakening the tastebuds and then luxuriating the tongue.

Caramel again returns in the flavor; heavily flanked by a hulking roastiness, rich dark-toffee and chocolate, a brash bitterness, and piney hop flavor. It starts soft, sweetish, and intriguing; and then seems to veer off-course, finishing quite dry with a lingering bitterness, pine-resin-like hop flavors, an odd-acidic note (there doesn't seem to be a pH issue in the initial flavor?), and a wash of alcohol that's a tad intrusive.

It's good but there are better choices available.

Serving type: bottle

02-05-2005 05:37:08 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of Troyone


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

Poured thick and black with a caramel color three inch head that dissipated to a thin layer within minutes. Must have had some bottle conditioning since yeast can be found at the bottom of the bottle.
Roasted light caramel and mild coffee aroma with the smell of pine hops.
Sweet acidic cookie roasted nutty molasses, caramel, and coffee taste with hints of pine grapefruit hops and doughy yeast; also a background mix of banana, brown sugar, vanilla, and cola.
A full body mouthfeel with a syrupy texture and soft carbonation. This has an average finish and feel.
Drinkability is great for this style, definitely not any type of session beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-23-2005 05:01:53 | More by Troyone
Photo of alexgash


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

Cool bottle. Espresso-black body with a big, thick, creamy, muddy-brown head. Light barely penetrates the burley brown edges. Nose consists of rich, sugary milk chocolate and bitter dark chocolate. A sharp, roasted coffee bitterness pervades. Dry, bitter dark chocolate up front. Quickly moves to velvety smooth, rummy fruits (plums, raisins), but with a tart edge. Roasted barley is there too. Bitterness rises and swells into the finish. A very hoppy imperial stout, exemplified by the long, bitter, dry finish. Traces of roasted fruit and alcohol are there too. Maybe a bit hoppy, but still good.

Serving type: bottle

01-05-2005 23:00:53 | More by alexgash
Photo of TheLongBeachBum


3.65/5  rDev -7.6%
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.

Serving type: bottle

11-27-2004 01:21:46 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of drewbage


3.75/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled from a different than usual business fliptop bottle.

Beer pours oil black with only a slight tan head.

Aroma is dense and rich with coffee, chocolate, leathery with a strong growing roast that lasts through to the sip.

Flavor matches with the aroma in flavors reflected, but the onset of the roast is more rapid and more overwhelming. The strong bitter roast eventually gives way to a strong hop bite and a strong alcohol warmth that does little to disguise the sweetness in the finish. (But the hops do remain behind long after the brew is out of your mouth.

Serving type: bottle

10-24-2004 05:21:22 | More by drewbage
Photo of kiya


3.45/5  rDev -12.7%
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.

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2004 20:36:29 | More by kiya
Photo of mzwolinski


3.25/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Jet black in color, with a dark tan head -- though one which fades quickly into a slim halo. Aroma is somewhat weak -- hints of chocolate with an odd hop scent that gives it a almost "watery" nose. Robust in mouthfeel with a grainy, bitter flavor. The alcohol flavor comes through a bit too strong, lending an almost medicinal flavor to the finish. As in the aroma, I find the hops a bit off-putting. All in all, a fairly disappointing beer! But I expect a lot from my "imperial" stouts.

Serving type: bottle

04-14-2004 02:13:56 | More by mzwolinski
Photo of aracauna


3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

This isn't what I was expecting when I popped open the flip top. I was expecting something chunky, rich and roasty and pitch black. Instead I get a dark brown porterish-looking beer with an excellent tan head that fades almost completely after a minute or two. The aroma is slight hops and a mellow chocolate and caramel malt. The 8.7% alcohol is hidden quite well actually. The flavor is soft with the cocoa-powder malt dominant and supported by notes of vanilla. I can't shake the feeling that the beer would be better with a little roast or burnt malt flavor to give the lightly sweet chocolate a little backbone. Still, insanely drinkable for a beer this strong, much less an imperial stout. Basically, if this had said imperial porter or something of the like, it would be an amazing beer, but I have trouble with it trying to pull off the imperial stout. It's still a very tasty beer, though. It's flavorful and yet I catch myself sucking it down faster than I usually do with a beer. If it were around here, I'd buy it.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2004 06:30:43 | More by aracauna
Photo of beerguy101


3.8/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2003 version. Eclipse black color. Small thick head. Aroma is chocolate, toffee and roasted malt. A full bodied Imperial Stout. Malts are chocolate and toffee with strong hints of vanilla and dark fruit. Hops are a touch grapefruity. Nicely balanced. The chocolate and dark fruit flavors at the start give way to end with a vanilla-ish finish. Hides the 8.7% alcohol very well. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly bitter.

Serving type: bottle

10-17-2003 01:51:40 | More by beerguy101
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Drake's Drakonic Imperial Stout from Drake's Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 361 ratings.