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Lion Stout | Ceylon / Lion Brewery Limited

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
88
very good
890 Reviews
THE BROS
83
good
Read the review
Lion StoutLion Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Ceylon / Lion Brewery Limited
Sri Lanka | website

Style: Foreign / Export Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
The dark caramel, large dense headed brew, with its 8.8% alcoholic content, is unique due to its sweet notes of chocolate and coffee interspersed into a foundation of dark roasted barley. Symbolic black to denote leadership, power, focus and strength, is dominant in the labeling as the lion journeys in the twilight unafraid, unbowed and unchallenged.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-28-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
890
Ratings:
1,584
Avg:
3.93
pDev:
15.78%
 
 
Wants:
75
Gots:
126
For Trade:
0
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User Reviews
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Reviews: 890 | Ratings: 1,584
Photo of crwills
4.3/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer is marketed as "Sinha Stout," rather than "Lion Stout" in Ontario, although I'm pretty sure it's the same thing (I bought it at an LCBO in Toronto, so YMMV).

Pours a deep brown, almost black, with some orangish highlights when held up to the light. My pour resulted in a billowing mocha head that stuck around for a nice long time, and left residue as I drank it.

Smell is very nice, if a bit simplistic (or maybe that's just my nose!) -- caramel, coffee, chocolate, and cherries.

Mouthfeel surprised me, as it was lighter and fresher than I expected for such a strong, dark beer. However, I found it matched the flavour of the beer very well.

Flavour is malts, coffee, ear-warming alcohol, lots of hay, with some planty and earthy elements. Some bitterness creeps in to compete with the sweetness of this beer's odour and initial taste, which makes the flavour much more complex and enjoyable in my mind.

At 8% ABV, this beer is extremely, dangerously drinkable for the alcohol content. I could easily sit down and have three or four without even thinking about it -- and then fall on the floor when I tried to stand up again. Might be worth it though -- one of my favourite stouts so far!

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Photo of Wasatch
4.3/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Bitterbill for this brew.

Pours a dark brown/black color, nice carbonation, nice one-finger plus creamy tan head, which leaves some nice sticky lacing. The nose is malty, slight vanilla/roast, good touch of toffee, chocolate, and caramel. The taste is slightly sweet/roasty, malty, with some nice toffee/chocolate/caramel tones. The alcohol is hidden very well. Medium body. Very drinkable, a very nice stout in deed, recommended.

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Photo of AmericanGothic
4.3/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Sam Adams pint.

A: Pours a nearly opaque, dark brown with two fingers of dark tan head. Good retention and lace.

S: Chocolate, brown sugar and a bit of spice.

T: Dark, roasted malts, semi-sweet chocolate, beginning to end. A little spicy hop bite on the end, accented by the alcohol. Tasty.

M: Not too heavy, quite smooth.

O: A delicious beer, and one I will look forward to enjoying again. Relatively low complexity but the flavors are true. First beer from Sri Lanka as far as I remember-- pleasant introduction to the country.

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Photo of bigdeuce
4.3/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First off, this is an outstanding stout! Pours a rich black color with a nice two finger head with lacing all the way down the glass. Rich, creamy mouthfeel. Smells and tastes smokey, very different taste than most stouts, although, it does include the coffee, chocolate and toffee like flavors. I was stunned upon trying this, as to it's origin, but this is one of the best out there.

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Photo of Jmamay22
4.3/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Some love this beer and others call it over hyped. Time to find out for myself. Some spotty, but generally no lacing.

A gentle pour creates a thick creamy dark tan head atop an opaque black brew.

Smells of chocolate malts, anise and black currant. There are some very distinct coffee notes as well as a whiff of toffee.

Time for a taste. Less chocolate taste than in the nose, but what is there is more of a bittersweet chocolate. In place of the diminished chocolate is a wonderful roasted near smoke flavor that is very original that blends well with the anise.

Smooth mouthfeel provided by the smoke and on the heavier side of medium. Very drinkable for a stout of this abv. I really wish I picked up more.

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Photo of dcmchew
4.3/5  rDev +9.4%

The Michael Jackson quote on the back label made me pick this up, i'm really curious about it.
A beautiful pour, entirely black with a generous mocha head, creamy and lasting a long while, leaving lots of lacing on the glass.
Smells nice too, dark chocolate laced with licorice and some vanilla, sweet coffee, plum jam, faintly smoked roasted malts, aromatic herbs, brown sugar and syrup.
Starts with sweet chocolate, creamy, with sour cherry, plum, fig, and an alcoholic warmth, giving the impression of brandy-filled chocolates from the get go. The appropriate spices, with licorice, vanilla, citrus peel and a floral/herbal feel reminding of Breckland thyme tea, faintly minty. Roast brings a big burnt bread crust aroma in the finish, mixed with the lingering sweetness, like molasses, and some sweet coffee too. Finishes fresh, with a mild herbal bitterness in lieu of a big roastiness. A hint of oxidation too, clearer later on.
Thus flavors get through to the aftertaste easily, with nice dark fruit, light chocolate, sherry, sweet dark malts and just a bit of roast. Medium body and carbonation, but full and chewy.
Didn't impress me with the advertised "chocolatey, mocha character", but it has a great complexity, great flavors with just a few faults, ignorable. Never imagined a beer from Sri Lanka of all places could be this good.

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.3/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

21.1 oz. bottle, a weird size, real heavy bottle, great label,

A: Pours black, with a creamy medium tan head, good retention and some spotty lace.

S: Light cacao count dark chocolate, like the 60% stuff, licorice, with a hint of banana liqueur and rum, it's a tropical stout for Pete's sake.

T: Great chocolate taste with some sour twang and that "tropical" dark malt character I find in Cooper's Export Stout and Xingu. Definite mocha characteristics, with notes of cinnamon stick, vanilla bean and roasted malt.

M: On the lighter side body for a big stout, but I like it as this is a style that needs to be drinkable and refreshing in the hot sun. Creamy and silky, enjoyable aftertaste that doesn't go on for too long, but makes you want another sip. That finishing vanilla note works wonders. The 8% is completely hidden.

D: I was excited to see a bottle of this at Hollingshead's; I've always wanted to try it, I'm a big fan of the style, yet there are so few examples around town. The price is real good, I think it was $3.99, and you get a delicious stout perfect for a hot summer day, a beer that can be drunk in droves, so be careful out there.

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Photo of Evil_Pidde
4.31/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours pitch, motor-oil black with an enormous tall brown thick head; it's so very thick, almost like hard whipped cream. Slow dissipation leaves quite nice lacings.

S: Roasted sweet malts, some chocolate and strong black coffee. Dark dried fruits. A salty sour backbone, not bad but interesting...

T: Sweet, syrupy dark roasted malts. Dark dried fruits; mainly figs (the figs are both dried but also ripe - kind of strange). Some caramell in the back.

M: Short aftertaste. Medium body and very low carbonation. I expected more.

O: Considering the geography of Sri Lanka/Ceylon this is probably the best beer ever. I you don't take the logistics in consideration, still a damn good producte.

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Photo of wagenvolks
4.31/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

330 ml bottle into a pint glass.

What a gorgeous pour--with a little aggression, it builds a towering khaki head that slowwwly recedes to a thick ring of foam. A steady carbonation level seeps upwards through the utterly opaque, black coffee body. The aroma is the only aspect of this brew that deserved below-average marks, as its notes of sour milk and bitter chocolate were a bit off-kilter for my liking.

The flavor more than made up for that, delivering an intense burst of milk chocolate, espresso, and caramel malts that immediately gave way to rich, dark chocolate notes, coffee grounds, and a warming booze presence that added a touch of dark fruit (raisin & fig). Mouthfeel was smooth & medium-bodied, with a fizzy carbonation level that livened up the palate, making it take note of the complexities that enveloped it. Excellent finish, almost chalky at first, of chocolate liquor and brandy. Quite an exceptional brew here, my only problem is that I took far too long to discover it.

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Photo of Golden2wenty1
4.32/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A pleasant surprise as part of a "Beers of the World" sampler I got for my 22nd birthday as I've been wanting to try this one.

Pours pitch black with a finger of creamy tan head. Dark and milk chocolates, roasted espresso bean and smoked peat dominate the senses. Mouthfeel is rich and the alcohol is warming. A decadent stout here, quite a surprise out of Sri Lanka, but kudos to Ceylon brewery, Michael Jackson can't be wrong....go ahead, it's there for the taking. No seriously, it's a gimme...

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Photo of jtingue
4.32/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The beer has an underlying meat or fish flavor, with strong caramel notes. I first tried this beer in Japan and like many of the beers I had on the trip it had an quirks that I have only experienced in Asian beers. Overall one of the more interesting beers I have had.

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Photo of WHROO
4.32/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is the best stout i have so far tasted, rich...full of body, everything you'd expect from a stout with a higher ABV. Chocolate, cocoa, dark fruits...roasty...all hid the alcohol taste
It smelt full, tasted full & loved it. Mouthfeel was very pleasant as well.
The only downside was I bought just 1 stubby...bumma!!

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Photo of jdhilt
4.32/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a two-finger light brown head that fades slowly and leaves a good lace. Totally black color. Good carbonation. Nose is coffee/caramel. Strong coffee/carmel flavor, nice, sweet, beefy stout. $6.49 for a 6-pack of 330ml bottles from Colonial Spirits, Acton, MA.

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Photo of Jayli
4.32/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap 7/18 at The Dirty Truth
This beer pours a nice dark brown with a one finger soapy/sudsy dark tan head with phenomenal retention. Thick, solid, sheets of lacing coat the glass the entire way down. Nose is of fruitiness at the beginning - some raisin and date notes, bitter chocolate, a touch of vanilla, and very mild hint of alcohol. Taste is much inline with the nose - starts of with some molasses and caramel malts at first and then moves to a bitter chocolate and coffee flavoring and just a touch of smokey flavoring, the end finishes with some fruitiness most detectable is the mild raisin flavoring. Medium bodied, moderate carbonation with a bone dry finish to it. Mouthfeel is very nice...lively but not abrasive, with a medium body and lightly dry finish. This is a really well balanced beer, one that with a lower ABV would be worthy of sitting with for a night.

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Photo of thegodfather2701
4.32/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an over sized sipper after I had let it sit outside of the refrigerator for about 30 minutes.

A-Pours nearly pitch black with a two finger mocha head that slowly dissipates. It leaves some cascading and lacing on the glass.

S-Dark chocolate, espresso, molasses, hint of brown sugar, alcohol. Hops are present, but the malt clearly dominates.

T-Chocolate flavors dominate; not dark chocolate like the nose, but more of a milk chocolate. There is also a somewhat strong alcohol presence. It has a really nice caramel finish. It is delicious.

M-It seems slightly thin. However, its has a smooth and creamy feel.

D-This beer is delicious and much more complex than I ever expected. The booziness and sweetness of this beer cut into its sessionability, but it is great for sipping.

Overall, I loved this beer. I recently drank Guinness Foreign Extra Stout and this was much better all across the board. I will definitely purchase this again.

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Photo of horshack7
4.32/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: It's quite the glass of darkness top to bottom even the head is decently dark beige.

Aroma: Herbs and spice, dark fruits notes of sour cherries. It's mostly citrus hop that lingers. Faint espresso, and some vanilla bean in the back.

Taste: Light carbonation up front but mostly a smooth mouthfeel. Touches of vanilla, bourbon, dark fruits, roasted malt and hops not quite burnt. In the end is a black licorice finish.

Notes: It's a solid beer all over. It's not overpowering even with it's 8.8% abv. Very drinkable and a good pick up. Cheers.

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Photo of boudreaux
4.32/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

The local stores are starting to branch out. They got this in the other day.
Nice stout roasted malt aroma with hints of ginger and, dare I say it, soy sauce. Very intriguing.
Pours pitch black with a voluminous medium brown head which lingers for a while as it gradually sinks down to a small creamy film on top of the beer.
As for the taste, there's rich deep fruit and chocolate/coffee flavors, tempered by the stout sourness typical of this style. It finishes with a bitter chocolate taste that has a moderate duration.

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Photo of mick303
4.32/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a huge head of coffee caramel foam in a tulip glass. Dissipates slowly, leaving an attractive film and lacing. Visible carbonation. Colour is jet black.

Nose is really rich. Lot of thick molasses, strong coffee. Roast malt and chocolate flavour comes through. Quite a thick and rich aroma.

Flavour is pleasing and complex. Lot of smooth chocolate, and a bit of tartness. Coffee and slight smoky roastiness also pronounced. The sweetness is present. Finish is subtle and smooth with lingering notes of coffee and a bit dry. Incredibly drinkable and alcohol is not at all present.

This one was a very pleasant surprise. It drinks very nicely, and I found the flavours all blended very nicely. It does drink like quite a full/heavy beer. For the style I think it is quite a solid representation and worth buying again.

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Photo of GilGarp
4.33/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dated 4/30/08

Pours from a distinctive 625ml bottle into a globe glass. It's nearly black in color with great white head that sticks around well and leaves nice lacing behind.

Aroma is very nice with lots of chocolate and roasted malt character to it.

Flavor is surprisingly good with great depth and balance. Chocolate and coffee, the malts give it a pleasant sweetness but a good dose of bittering hops balances it out.

Mouthfeel is good too with creamy texture and not too much carbonation. Drinkability is there too as long as you don't mind the 8% ABV.

Overall, very impressive and frankly surprising. I never expected this mass-produced export stout to be this good. This is one beer that I have seen for years but never gave a second glance. Now I think I'll be coming back regularly.

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Photo of irishkyle21
4.33/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A cold fall day in Northern Ontario, so why not have a great beer that has been in the cellar since last fall?. It pours with a creamy tanned head that holds up fairly well but leaves behind lots of lacing. Has a dark black color.

Smells nice and sweet with lots of molasses, coffee, roasted malt, fruits and a bit of chewing tobacco. The alcohol comes through as the stout warms.

Tastes of chocolate, fruits, slight hop bitterness and coffee. The finish has a good lingering roasted malt and molasses taste. A great beer to have anytime, but especially on a cold day as the alcohol is inviting and warming.

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Photo of seagis
4.33/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

First, let me say that stout in general is probably my favorite type of beer.

That being said, Young's Double Chocolate Stout was my favorite stout until I found Lion Stout. This has to be some of the best stuff ever put into a bottle. :-)

It pours a reasonable amount of head, even though I poured it rather slowly (it took me close to 2 minutes to fill a pint glass.) It poured to a totally opaque black color, with a very pleasant aroma. There was a hint of what I detected as raisins, but my wife and children all smelled coffee. To each his (or her) own, I suppose.

Very nice mouthfeel. Not too heavy, not light enough to think that this was someone's first attempt at stout, either. It retains it's light raisinesque flavor, but it expands to a deeper flavor as it goes down. A very nice finish, having a small note of caramel on the very end.

A truly pleasing drink. If you ever have the opportunity to purchase a bottle of this stuff, I heartily recommend it.

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Photo of Frozensoul327
4.33/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow, it's nice to be back to beer after such a long illness. Pours out to a dark black as night color with a nice big head of tan foam. Very dense. Uniform lace around the interior of the glass. Aromas of roasted malt, cocoa, burning wood and pumpernickel bread. Taste was very quaffable; flavors of roasted malt, dark chocolate, even some sweet milky qualities were present. Mouthfeel was good; could've been a touch thicker and heartier, but I can't complain. Good Drinkability. A definite revisit will be inline soon. Recommended.

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Photo of Manosbeeroffate
4.33/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First time I had this, soooo good!! Thick head pours in nice and stays for a while, actually you gotta be careful about pouring too fast. Taste is of roasted malts, a hints of sweetness and quite a bit like unsweetened cocoa powder. Thick mouthfeel but not bad. Definetly not a session beer, but something to be savored and enjoyed.

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Photo of ericj551
4.33/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Lion Stout pours an inky black with a thick brown head. The aroma is sweet roasted and dark malts. The taste is rich and creamy, sweet but not overly so with a nice rounded roasted malt flavor. The after taste is slightly metallic and sour. The alcohol is not noticeable, and I think its strength is hidden well. This beer certainly didn't suffer from its trip around the world from Sri Lanka.

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Photo of spointon
4.33/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I poured this one from a 12oz brown bottle into a tulip pint glass.

A= At fridge temp, this stout poured a deep dark black (no light was getting through this beauty) with a 2.5" foamy tan head. After letting the glass sit for a good 10 minutes, the head dropped to a ¼" cap that retained well. Incredible sticky lacing clung to my glass all the way down.

S= A nice blend of sweet and roasty-bitter aromas here. The sweetness was reminiscent of raisins, molasses, and chocolate. The rest of the smell was made up of dark roasty malts, coffee, and maybe a hint of chickory.

T= This tasted like a highly sweetened and carbonated café au lait coffee. Lactose sugar, milk chocolate, and treacle came first, followed by some roasted grain and dark chocolate bitterness. There was a complex yet subtle array of ripe dark fruit and earthiness running all through the middle of this beer. Finish was more sweet than bitter, though the roasted grain notes did linger on to the aftertaste.

MF= Heavy body with just a moderate carbonation level. Felt slick and tongue-coating in the mouth.

D= This was a very interesting and delicious beer. The ABV is really well hidden and is not a factor at all. If you are into sweet stouts, this is very sessionable in my opinion.

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Lion Stout from Ceylon / Lion Brewery Limited
88 out of 100 based on 890 ratings.