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Lion Stout - Ceylon / Lion Brewery Limited

Not Rated.
Lion StoutLion Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

878 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 878
Hads: 1,532
Avg: 3.94
pDev: 15.48%
Wants: 64
Gots: 96 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Ceylon / Lion Brewery Limited visit their website
Sri Lanka

Style | ABV
Foreign / Export Stout |  8.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-28-2001

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.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 878 | Hads: 1,532
Photo of YouSkeete
4.52/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Deep reddish black, bubbly khaki head which disappears very quickly. Moderate lacing.

S: Espresso beans, Earthy and sweet malts, Dark candied fruits like blackberries and prunes. Hints of bittersweet chocolate and alcohol present themselves.

T: Raw coffee grinds, big espresso coffee bite right off the start. Fades into a more complex flavor, with a thick fruit flavor and sweet caramel-like malts. Nice hop bite levels off with the body. 8% ABV is ideal for this brew. Bitter chocolate and dark coffee aftertaste.

M: Watery, sticky and sweet. Solid body, medium carbonation, which should be a bit lower in my opinion. Great aftertaste.

D: Very nice. A great stout, i love this stuff.

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Photo of Citadel82
4.52/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This brew was a pleasant surprise! I picked up a single bottle at New World Beverage in Manhattan for $1.00 out of the cooler. Guess it was not a big seller. It is antstanding export stout. It was not exceptionally dry nor cloying in itssweetness. no hint of alcohol. It has a very molasses like character to quote the missus and enough depth and complexity (coffee and chicory, some dried fruit) to make it exceptionally drinkable. I can't wait to grab some more and study it further. If I can get it at a buck a bottle - woo hoo -so much the better.

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Photo of goo
4.52/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Pours a pitch black with tinted head. The head fades quickly into lacing.

S: Smells distinctly of coffee with a bit of chocolate. Pretty Fantastic

T: Tastes the way is smells. Some nice sweetness to the drink and a decent amount of coffee comes through.

M:Mild/Moderate carbonation maybe a bit creamy goes down nicely.

D: Dangerously drinkable, i never looked at the ABV until after I drank it and I wold have never guessed 8%

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Photo of slyke
4.53/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Lion Stout pours an inky black color with a generous and lasting tan head.

The smell is roasty and chocolatey with a touch of coffee. The taste is chocolatey, malty, and coffee-like with the warming note of alcohol.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a slightly bitter coffee aftertaste. This is an outstanding beer to sip, but it's smoothness makes it slide down easily. Try this beer if you find it, if you enjoy stouts, you won't be disappointed.

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Photo of Mitchster
4.53/5  rDev +15%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

$2.79 for a 625ml bottle. 8.0% ABV.

Pours out to a very dark brown, lighter in color than expected, forming a large and robust soapy dark tan head that looks gorgeous with exceptional retention and beautiful solid sheets of lacing composed of microbubbles. Aroma is akin to a Baltic Porter...lots of raisin, dates, figs, and prunes, bittersweet chocolate, vanilla, and the faintest suggestion of alcohol. Mouthfeel is very nice...lively but not abrasive, with a medium body and lightly dry finish. Tastes quite nice, what I would expect for a baltic porter. Powdery cocoa with a pleasant light tartness and astringency of black currants, very faint metals in the middle, with some husk and lightly roasted grains. Almost smoky towards the finish with suggestions of diatomaceous earth. The sourness keeps the beer alive, augmenting and balancing nicely with the other subtleties going on under the hood. Alcohol is imperceptable in aroma or taste, but I'm feeling it after one glass. No other off-flavors.

Damn tasty, whatever you call it...I call it a Baltic Porter. I really enjoyed this. Forget the hype and bias and just drink it up. Very easy to drink with a tight body and the brains to back it up. Paired nicely with the 9-grain bread I just made. A wonderful stout and cheaper that Sinebrychoff or D.Carnegie & Co. Highly recommended and an exceptional brew for the price!

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Photo of MissLynx
4.54/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this one a little while back, at Fionn McCool's on St. Clair in Toronto (where it's called Sinha Stout rather than Lion Stout - apparently two names for the same product). I'd ordered it mainly because it was a stout I'd never had before, and I'm always up for trying new beers of my favourite types. Wasn't sure what it would be like, though -- I'd never really thought of Sri Lanka as a big stout-producing country.

To my surprise, it was really nice. Not necessarily about to be one of my very top favourites, but certainly very good and something I'd happily order again any time. It had a really rich, interesting flavour, with strong overtones of dried fruit -- black currant or maybe dried cherries or something. A little bit reminiscent of Unibroue's Trois Pistoles in that respect, although I certainly wouldn't call them equivalent (Trois Pistoles is a pretty hard act to follow). Also nice hints of dark chocolate and caramel.

All in all, a really enjoyable, unexpected treat. I will definitely order it again next time I'm there.

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Photo of billybob
4.55/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours pitch black with a large dark tan head with moderate retention and lacing. aromas of prunes, chocolate, roasted malt. some sweetness to the taste with a stale or burnt coffee and chocolate. full bodied with a moderate carbonation. nicely balanced stout, hard to believe that a beer this good can be brewed in sri lanka.

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Photo of cyrenaica
4.55/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle
8.0% ABV

I tried this beer on August 27, 2007 at Smokeless Joe's in Toronto. The beer poured a dark chocolate brown into a unibroue tulip glass with a very generous brown head. The aroma was reminiscent of malt, chocolate, and coffee. The mouthfeel is thick with mild carbonation. The flavour was very good, some malt and coffee hints.

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Photo of battlekow
4.56/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

There are no confirmed reports of melanistic (black) lions, either in the wild or captivity (http://www.lairweb.org.nz/tiger/black.html). Well, I found one: this Lion is jet black with a huge, rocky head that lasts forever. Oh, and it had a cat hair in it, but I'll blame that on my new kitten and not the Lion. Smell is surprisingly subdued, with a gentle roasted character. The taste, though, explodes with delicious bitter roastedness that's smooth as can be. Just a hint of plums/raisins. What a great beer. I might move to Sri Lanka.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.58/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep, opaque sable with a fine-bubbled and fairly persistent tan head. Aroma is smoky with firm tones of coffee and unsweetened chocolate with more than a hint of burnt caramel. Rich, smoky flavor is mainly of fine roast coffee, unsweet chocolate and caramel, subtly sweet. Texture is fairly smooth yet quite fizzy. A must for stout fans!

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Photo of Tolnik
4.6/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Good deep brown almost black beer. When poured into a pint glass it was a inch and a half of foam reducing down to a good lingering lacing. Great aroma greats the nose from the beer of a cooking chocolate and mocha malt. Flavor agrees with the nose and has a good full flavorful mouthfeel overall.

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Photo of ohiohophead
4.6/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

appearance: Poured into imperial pint glass. Mocha colored thick head of foam. nice, brownish lacing the whole way down the glass. Beer is a deep, black color.

aroma: Nutty, light alcohol scented aroma. Nose on this beer is quite small. Thought I detected a hint of chocolate and roasted coffee bean in the aroma. After a few minutes, I picked up vanilla in the aroma.

taste: Initial flavor is actually is lightly sweet cocoa with a hint of alcohol and quickly fades to a dry, roasted malt flavor that finishes with a light coffee finish.

mouthfeel: This beer has a light, crisp mouthfeel to it which is quite surprising for an export stout with 8% ABV.

drinkability: Fairly high drinkability, especially for a high ABV stout. Watch out, you can drink quite a few of these before the alcohol catches up to you.

I let the beer sit for a while to warm up a bit and the slightly warmer temp brought out more complexities in both the aroma and the flavor. Overall, this was a surprisingly good beer. This will definitely be put on my "purchase again" list.

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Photo of ThreeWiseMen
4.6/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Lion Stout was a favorite of the wisemen years ago, and we longed to try it again.

Split between Wiseman Nick and Wiseman Zach, though Zach chose not to participate in the review.

Poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours thick and black from the bottle. Two finger, light brown, latte-like head sits on top. Shades of deep red can be seen around the edges when held to light. Head dies slowly, leaving thick, web-like lacing in it's wake. Looks deeeelish!

Smell: Plums, raisins, coffee, roasted malt, perfumy hops, bread, and other dried fruit. Fruity, smoky, and complex. Awesome!

Taste: Starts with plum, raisins, and fruity esters, then smoothly transgresses to coffee and roasted malt. Possibly some toffee in there too, and definitely some tartness (sour cherries maybe?). Finishes with perfumy hops that slowly give way to smoke and roasted malt in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Feels a bit lighter than an American stout. Smooth and tart, with nice amount of creaminess. Carbonation is on the low end. A bit chewy, and a bit of mouth-numbing.

Drinkability: Perfect. Lighter body allows you to enjoy this one for a looong time. Excellent complexity and flavor progression. Zach and I will definitely buy this again.

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Photo of gregb13
4.61/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Very dark with a fine, sticky-creamy head that settles quickly. Smells very rich and roasty; tobacco, cocoa powder, semi-sweet chocolate liqueur, espresso bean and a little booze. Taste is very complex; flavors follow the nose, along with faint brandy and dark fruity notes. Mouthfeel is soft and creamy, and there is a very pleasant, lightly bittersweet aftertaste that lingers moderately.

Overall, this is easily one of the best stouts I've had. Even better is that I can pick it up for 8rmb (about $1.30) for a 500ml (16.9oz.) tin here in China.

I couldn't recommend this beer any more strongly. Go and get it!

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Photo of MisterClean
4.62/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Commercial style example at homebrew meeting.

A - Pours a dark black with 2 fingers of mocha head. Head doesn't dissipate, but leaves little lacing.

S/T - Dark roast coffee, chocolate, and grassy hops. Fairly resiny too. Yummy.

M - Full-bodied, well-balanced, dry finish, and smooth. Exactly how this beer should finish.

D - Damn, very drinkable perfect. Rated as best of style by BJCP for a reason. Great example of a foreign stout.

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Photo of hhboulder
4.62/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an oil black with ruby around the rim when held up to the light. Tan with some orange head with decent retention and thin wispy lacing.

Get the typical roasted and chocolate malt nose, but, beyond that, is much more interesting than typical stouts, even compared with guiness extra foreign--a great stout. There are sweet caramel notes as well as fruity esters similar to a port wine.

Sweet roasted toffee and chocolates but also goes above and beyond with dark fruits. Minimal bitterness, definitely balanced to malts. Finish is a little dry but very enjoyable with lingering sweet caramel and toffee.

Warming alcohol that is somehow very pleasant for this ABV. Creamy with medium body and moderate carb.

Surprisingly VERY good stout in a can from Sri Lanka. I'll be buying this over Guiness Foreign Extra from now on. It just has more going on than the typical "chocolate, coffee, espresso, roasted" flavors of a stout...

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.62/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Fully ebon hue, rich, tan hand, thick and rocky...good looking stout, so far. Nose, soft and creamy, with notes of nuts and cocoa. Taste is smooth at first, but fills the mouth well. Huge malts, caramelly, thick and nearly chewy, very full bodied. Perfect integration, wonderful balance, sweet and tasty, but never too, with a delicate fruitiness, just underneath. The ABV peeks in just a bit, but doesn't mar the enjoyment of what's nearly a perfect stout! Beats the hell out of Guinness, but gets me yearning for an Expedition. Hearty and proud as it's namesake, Lion is a stout fit for a king. Lightly spicy in the end, nutty, and never-ending tastiness.

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Photo of happygnome
4.63/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

a: pours a deep dark black color with about a half inch of tan head that dissapears relatively slow but leaves a good amount of sticky lacing that leaves notches along the side of the glass as i sip away at this masterpiece. barely any light is able to transcend the deep dark black color of this brew
s: deep roasted black malts definatly dominate the overall aroma of this brew, cocoa coffee and even hints of brown sugar are also present, there really isnt a any hop aroma which i exppected. even though there is a lack of hop aroma, the overall sweetness of this is not overwhelming it seems balanced
t: phenominal, exceptional. roated balck malts, hints of coffee dark chocolate and brown sugar, not too overly sweet. no real hop bitterness here but it is not an overly sweet brew nicely balanced not sickening sweet
m: medium to full bodied beer deffinatly closer to the full bodied side of that, little carbonatoin on the tongue

overall, this could be the necter of the gods, one of the best brews that i have ever had his will always have a place in my fridge

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Photo of MrHurmateeowish
4.63/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

33cl brown bottle from The Lighthouse in Manchester. Pours a pitch black body with the slightest hint of ruby-red highlights and a good inch or so of tan head that persists and leaves lacing. Smells roasty with strong caramel notes, coffee, baker's chocolate... Tastes very roasty with chocolate, coffee, caramel, and toffee notes. Fairly sweet right to the finish. Rich full mouthfeel with ample carbonation. Very tasty, fairly drinkable considering the ABV and rich flavors, and an old favorite for sure. Surprised I haven't reviewed it sooner!

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.65/5  rDev +18%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

11.20 oz bottle poured into an Imperial Pint. 8.0% ABV, 0933...(smudged).

A - A rather vigorous pour creates some fast cascading and a massive three-finger head. The dark tan dollop of foam sits gently on top of the clear but very dark brown beer with good retention and patches of thick lace.

S - Smooth milk chocolate and rich mocha flourish in this roasted malt beauty. Light notes of coffee and cream blend in too. It smells like it will be very smooth and creamy in both flavor and texture.

T - Incredibly creamy and smooth in terms of taste and texture, bold roasted malts with a rich milk chocolate and mocha flavor. The finish has a small coffee bitterness.

M - Amazingly velvety smooth and creamy, the soft texture is a supple, full body of pure enjoyment. Very light roasted bitterness to the finish.

D - This stout is absolutely fantastic. I've been meaning to get pack of it and next time I'm at a store that carries it, I surely will. I could have it all night!

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Photo of krustster
4.65/5  rDev +18%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I decided to re-re-review this as my first one was based on a mildly infected box, then my second attempt was a drunken, rambling mess. I actually ended up increasing some of my scores now that my nose isn't so stuffy and I'm in a better state of mind to pick up on the subtleties.

Awesome appearance. Nearly black, but just a bit of light shines through at the edges. Big, creamy, tan head with excellent retention. Kind of hard to describe but the best way I can put it is that the bubbles are extremely fine, almost like a nitro stout. Thick sheets of lacing everywhere. An oddly unique look, and one of the most appealing that I've seen.

Nose is lively with some coffee, dark fruit (I still hate saying that), sweet roasted malts, and a slight hint of alcohol. There's another scent under there that's hard to identify which I like a lot, and which gives this beer a lot of its character. Oh, that's it, chocolate! Almost a milk chocolate, not the bitter dark of most stouts (well, imperial ones, which what I normally reach for).

Delicious taste that reveals some more nuance. Assertive coffee/roast flavor that is kept in check by the underlying fruity sweetness. I guess you could say that the entry has more fruit and sweetness and creamy milk chocolate, with the roasted character coming out in the... mid palate? Is that a thing? The finish goes back to more of a fruit and light chocolate taste, with very light bitterness coming out as it fades. It's hard to to fully express my appreciation for this beer's taste, because it's got a lot of flavor, but the balance is what's important, and that's difficult to describe. I think it's the balance of chocolate and fruit that does it to me. And it's really not that sweet overall, which is another plus.

Mouthfeel is another strong point. The carbonation is fairly high, but once again, oddly fine. It's sharp on the entry, but not too much. Body is on the lighter end of medium, really quite unusual when you consider the nearly 9% ABV, but this is another oddity that ends up working very well for me. Rather dry finish. Smooth, creamy, incredibly drinkable for how strong it is. Compared to most stouts, it's almost like drinking a champagne, and it works! I'm used to drinking imperials that blast my throat with extreme viscosity and just saying "oh man it's so thick I love it." This one is a little strange and the various elements all come together to make something unique and, to me, fantastic.

One of my favorite stouts overall, and definitely my favorite one that isn't limited/fancy/hard to find. When you factor in the price, this is very nearly a perfect beer. Less than $10 for a four pack of 500ml cans or under $5 for a bomber, unbelievable. I'm sure a lot of the low reviews are of infected/"off" batches, judging by how different some of the descriptions are. I've got a pretty big backlog of beers at home to work through, and yet I just keep buying more Lion Stout. It's a versatile beer suitable for thoughtful sipping or just partying and tossing back. A true classic!

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Photo of danimal22
4.65/5  rDev +18%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received Lion Stout in a holiday gift pack from work, and was pleasantly surprised! Served in a pint glass poured from 12oz bottle

A: Pours a very nice dark, near opaque color. Decent fluffy brown head lingers for some time leaving noticeable lacing.

S: Dark roasted nut/grain smell. Very pleasant.

T: Very nice! Dark roasted, near smoky nut flavor with hints of cocoa. Nice balance with a very slight hopping.

M: Mouth feel is good. Moderate carbonation allows the taste to "tickle the taste buds".

D: Very drinkable stout. I recommend it.

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Photo of fischerr3
4.65/5  rDev +18%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


what can i say... chocolate chocolate chocolate... but i am pretty sure they used actual chocolate so its not getting a 5 from me

but damn... its done right. not like the sapparo chocolate which just tastes like a yoohoo. this is good

the mouth feel was a little grainy but that could have to do with the glass i drank it out of ... or not... but it was good

another one of those strong beers that you just cant sit down and drink 3 of... crap 2 of these and im ready to switch to water hahahaha but... its worth every bit of it

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Photo of scruffwhor
4.65/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I haven't heard of this beer before, but when I went to DiCarlo's Liqours in Willowbrook, IL. I saw the six pack with beer dork Michael Jackson on the cardboard and had to pick it up. With a plus to the exotic locale the beer is produced.

Appearance- Poured a 0ne and a half finger head into a chalice/oversized wine glass very similar to what M. Jackson was drinking from on the cover. The almost complete liquid black with hints of a reddish-brown at the top of the beer.

Smell- Excellent roasted malt sweetness nicely subdued by a hint of hops. Hint of whipping cream to help define the malt induced aromas.

Taste- Was much better than I would ever have expected beautiful blend of smokey malt with excellent bacjup by the hop bitterness although there wasn't much. Creamy vanilla notes with an overall whole milk nuance.

Mouthfeel- Medium palate, but not filling.

Drinkability- I would love to have a couple of these with in a day. Maybe with a chocolate pecan tortie.

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Photo of Rowland55
4.66/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Tried this beer on a night out with my wife. Poured a nice dark black with a tan head a few inches, tasted exactly how I feel a good stout should and am definitely going to try to find some for home.

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Lion Stout from Ceylon / Lion Brewery Limited
88 out of 100 based on 878 ratings.