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Alaskan Perseverance Ale (Pilot Series) - Alaskan Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Alaskan Perseverance Ale (Pilot Series)Alaskan Perseverance Ale (Pilot Series)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

258 Ratings
THE BROS
89
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 258
Reviews: 124
rAvg: 3.84
pDev: 11.46%
Wants: 35
Gots: 72 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Alaskan Brewing Co. visit their website
Alaska, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ArrogantB on 09-03-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Alaskan Perseverance Ale is a Russian Imperial Stout. This style was chosen to celebrate our 25th anniversary of brewing on the Last Frontier in our coastal home of Juneau, Alaska.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 258 | Reviews: 124
Reviews by GrumpyJunglist:
Photo of GrumpyJunglist
3.65/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a sniffer straight from the bottle.

A: Poured a midnight black, no light can pass through this one. The head was minimal and dissipated fast. It was a dark brown color, with about a half fingers worth.

S: Big aromas of roasted coffee, with a little honey, and a bit of Maple syrup scents.

T: Very light no real overpowering of the RIS, with mild tones roasted coffee beans, with the sweetness more upfront from the birch and honey.

M: Starts off sweet, ends up warm and roasty.

O: Not bad, but not something I would go crazy about to buy again. Wonder how this thing would age.

More User Reviews:
Photo of Beaver13
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle. Pours a dark brown/black with a big creamy tan head that retains fairly well and leaves some lacing.

The aroma is very surprising for a stout - sweet floral honey with some fudgy chocolate and a bit of smoke. A little black licorice and roast comes out as it warms.

The flavor is sweet lactic fudgy chocolate and some smoke with a good sized roast bitterness in the finish mixed with some residual sweetness. As it warms the roast char bitterness starts to dominate the sweetness. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with smooth carbonation.

Overall, an interesting stout. The honey and sweetness with smoke and roast was interesting.

Photo of Jason
3.97/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber with a anniversary date on the bottle of 25 years. Cheers to that!!

LOOK: Pitch black, thick tan lacing

SMELL: Chocolate syrup, birch sap, burnt sugar, espresso, charcoal, booze, nougat, ripe figs

TASTE: Sweet, full body, mocha, tree sap, charcoal, coffee, dark chocolate, caramel, taffy, faint honey, modest hopping, rich, sweet finish

Good use of birch syrup as that is a flavor that can take over real quick, solid for the style with the whole Russian Imp. Stout and such. Great to see some flare added to it, seems to work better since the cooler weather has arrived.

Photo of BigE90
2.56/5  rDev -33.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

a) dark in color, a little light coming through though, small head that faded quickly

s) not a lot going on, you can smell some syrup and honey and a little malt but nothing over powering or really standing out from the pour or just sitting there

t) wow, immediately reminds me of the Smoked Porter then quickly fades to some sweetness followed by a hop bitterness. After several tastes though the bitterness and sweetness are starting to leave a bad after taste and that is all I can taste which I am not liking

m) very light and thin, consistency of a brown ale not a RIS, very surprised at the lack of body or complexity in this

o) I wanted to like this very much but came away very disappointed. I had high expectations but the flavors just did not convey what a RIS should be and the biggest surprise was the very light mouthfeel. I don't think cellaring is going to help as not a lot is going on flavor wise. No hurry to open my other bottles.

Photo of kingcrowing
4.18/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap poured into a tulip.

Pours a very dark black color with a very light dark head and some and some nice thin lacing. Nose is malty, sweet and very rich.

Taste is chocolate, smoke, bacon and sweet malt. There's a good sharp be on the back of the the throat, it's warm but not too hot. Overall an awesome beer!

Photo of pat61
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

Nose: spicy, floral, espresso, chocolate, honey, root beer, hint of smoke.
Rich brilliant deep brown to black with a 1/2" tan head that dissipates at medium speed. Leaves light lace and the beer has legs.
Palate: Nice thick creamy chocolate flavors, a hint of honey, and hints of root beer and spices. Faint espresso and a suggestion of smoke.
Rich, creamy and chewy with below average carbonation. I like the bottled version better than the draft..

Photo of ehammond1
3.7/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On Tap

Urge Gastropub
San Diego, CA

Black as can be with a thin chocolate milk colored head. Thin sheets of lacing left down the glass.

Mixed aroma consisting of espresso/coffee, some mild chocolate, lots of roasted malt, and a touch of sugar sweetness. Relatively standard "good" RIS aroma.

The flavor isn't quite as successful. While the flavor does follow the nose pretty closely, there's a bit of licorice flavor and alcohol sting that aren't all too pleasant and detract from the otherwise pleasant flavor profile.

Medium to thick bodied. Appropriate.

A decent big stout with some distinct flaws that really detract from the overall enjoyment and drinkability.

Photo of MattyG85
4.45/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 750 ml bottle into a snifter glass.

Appearance: Very dark black with only a tiny bit of brown color on the edge of the glass. Solid three fingers of tan head that fade into a thin patchy layer. Moderate amount of lacing.

Smell: A fairly sweet smelling stout. Big aroma of chocolate, coffee, dark roasted malts, and syrup with some hints of dark cherry fruit and plum. Also some hints of honey, grassy hops, and anise.

Taste: Pretty sweet and roasty like the smell leads on. A good dose of dark chocolate, coffee, dark caramel malts, and toffee. Good hints of syrup, honey, and dark cherries with plum. Light hint of spicy anise. Finishes with a light hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Fairly full bodied although slightly lighter than a typical imperial stout. Carbonation is moderate. Very creamy and smooth. No sign of the alcohol.

Overall: A very solid stout. On the sweeter side with the syrup and honey but complex enough to be well balanced.

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.88/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Rich and black like the Alaskan sky in wintertime. Small tan head, looks the part of a big RIS. Aroma of mild brown sugar, deep roast, leaning chocolate malt more than anything else.

Taste, again, solid roasting, pretty easy to drink, hid the 9% nicely. Slick, creamy and coating, this is just as much an imperial milk stout as an ris. The birch/honey addition certainly smoothed this out I would think. They aren't noticeable so much in the flavor profile as opposed to the slick mouthfeel and hidden abv. Kinda like Melange 3, I don't get any of that syrup, birch or sap stuff, I just get a smoother BT.

Mild smoke notes if you look for them. A good beer, could have used a little thickening up I guess if you have to critique something or find room for improvement.

Photo of thatruth
3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz from the Beer Junction in West Seattle, suggested by Morgan. poured into pint glass.

pours a 1/8" tan head with moderate-to-heavy frothy lacing. pours a dormant root beer color into an opaque body with caramel tint. absolutely no light penetrates this beer.

smells of smoky firewood malt, pears, coffee roast, and as noted on the bottle: 'birch' syrup.

taste has a minimal lacquer presence that tends to override (or forebode) most RISs. damn malty, more smoky, chocolate taste than anything else. notes of honey, as mentioned on the bottle, are also present.

fresh, inquisitive on-bringing leads to a wet, fritzy finish. 9.0% alc./vol. hidden quite well, easy on the palette.

damn fine beer from Alaska for their 25th anniversary. hats off to them, well done.

Photo of quirkzoo
3.67/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours almost black with a little brown around the edges and one finger of tan head. The aroma is extremely roasty. Tons of chocolate and coffee maltiness and an herbal characteristic that I recognize as birch only because I just had the Stone collab pumpkin beer that also had birch. The taste is more of the same, heavily roasted and nice sweet RIS. Good but nothing that really surprised me. The birch complexity was also a bit lost in the taste. The mouthfeel was extremely smooth, just enough carbonation, perfect for the style. Overall I am happy I picked this one up at the store but probably won't seek it out again.

Photo of MrVonzipper
4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pitch black with a bubbly khaki head. Good retention and lacing. Fairly oily and viscous.

Dark roasted maltiness, woodiness (but not oak), molases and honey notes on the nose.

Nice bright robust flavor with pretty good balance. Notes of Rich dark malt, molasses, mild faint honey and wood.

Med-full bodied. Mildly viscous with a creamy mild carbonation.

Overall it's good. Not amazing like amazing as anticipated. I'd love to try with some age to see how it changes because there seems to be Alot going on in there and things haven't begun to harmonize IMO.

Photo of Metalmonk
4.07/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Brewed with birch syrup and fireweed honey. Neat! Thanks a million (oh heck, a billion) to msubulldog25 for this bottle.

Pours a head of dark brown that unfortunately doesn't stay long. The color is somewhere between the darkest brown possible and black. Whatever...it's freakin' dark, ok?

The smell is wonderful. Various succulent dark fruits, sweet herbs, and toffee/caramel wrapped in a thin blanket of smoke. Hints of gooey chocolate and coffee.

Take all that the nose offers, and add brown sugar, cola and black liquorice to summarize the taste. And while that makes for a long list of flavor impressions, it's really not that complex, or quite that mindblowing. Something's stopping it from reaching godly heights, and I think it's mostly the feel. Which is not bad, but if this had an uber-smooth, super-round, thicker feel like, say, Bell's Expedition stout (a paragon of awesome texture) this would've been tremendous. Instead it's a couple hairs thinner and more carbonated than it should be. But still, it's tremendous enough, and not as sweet as you might think, considering the syrup/honey additions. Does really well with some warming too. Of course, most stouts do, and Perseverance is no exception to the rule. Alaskan does big dark beers best, don't they?

Photo of hooliganlife
3.66/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

pours a thick jet black with about a half inch of cocoa creamy head. light retention.

nose is a bit weak. some faint sweet dark fruit and roasted malt.

lots of roasted malt with a bit of a charcoal flavor. very faint syrup in here. nice sweetness though. faint alcohol. some bitterness.

fairly thick with a bit of bite from the carbonation.

not bad but could use some more depth and complexity. a nice try for sure.

Photo of thagr81us
3.87/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks goes out to cmrillo for sharing this one at the Down South Beer Tasting while aasher was in town to visit! Served from bottle into a Mikkeller taster flute. Poured pitch black with a minimal brown head. Maintained decent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, toffee, caramel, subtle coffee, and dark fruit. The flavor was of sweet malt, honey, dark fruit, and subtle sweet alcohol. It had a medium feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a decent brew. I really wouldn't have guessed this was an RIS based on the flavor alone as it felt more like an Imperial Stout instead. The aroma however screamed RIS at the top of its lungs! This was a nice addition to an already great lineup that evening. However, the mouthfeel was a little thin for my liking when it comes to the style. Definitely worth trying if you get the opportunity.

Photo of morimech
3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark black color with two fingers of head that had excellant retention before settling to a thick cap. Moderate amount of sticky lacing is left down the glass.

Good stout aromas of roasted malt, chocolate, and a touch of smoke. A little bit of an underlying sweetness permeates through the aroma that I attribute to the honey.

The flavor is heavily influenced by the roasted malt. More minor flavors include a sweet chocolate and some smoke. A little heavy handed in execution. Not picking up anything from the "special" ingrediants.

Solid imperial stout body. Nice creamy, smooth texture.

The flavor was a little too one dimensional and the honey and syrup did not add much. Still a good stout and one of Alaskan Brewing better beers.

Photo of mkotsayfan
3.65/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a snifter. Pours a dark black with a mocha colored one finger head. The aroma has lots of chocolate, coffee, and roasted malts, with a hint of syrup. The taste has some more chocolate and coffee, along with a smoky character and honey. The mouthfeel is medium-thick bodied with a decent amount of carbonation.

Overall, a solid RIS from Alaskan, but two things keep it from true glory: the finish to the taste is a little too prickly, and the taste just doesn't have enough kick. But it's still a solid effort.

Photo of KYGunner
3.79/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This took on a most unusual character as the nose was creamy with vanilla, maple syrup, caramel and chocolate malt. The flavor, though, was nothing like that with a black licorice, anise, caraway and a dry pumpernickle bread flavor. The nose seemed barrel aged stout while the flavor was a bit Scottish Ale.

Photo of claaark13
3.92/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sent as an extra by a guy who likes the Raiders but also enjoys beer. Poured into a Founders snifter.

A - Pours fairly dark, not quite black, with a nice tan head. Doesn't seem to stick to the glass all that well. It looks alright though. It could certainly be a little darker.

S - Tons of roast with a slight amount of booze coming through. Sugary sweetness appears towards the end. That is likely the birch syrup and honey.

T - Roast throughout. Some brown sugar, bitter chocolate, mild vanilla, then more roast. The flavor seems gets a little airy for a moment on each sip. The sweetness and roast dominate the final flavors.

M - A little on the light side of medium.

O - Not a bad one at all. Reminds me a lot of Stone IRS. It is a solid, presumably off-the-shelf RIS.

Photo of Rutager
3.82/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance. Pours black with a thin, pale tan head that quickly fades.

Smell. Roasty malts, charred wood, licorice root and dark fruits with a little sweet chocolate.

Taste. Roasty dark malts, toasted wood, a little black licorice and a bit of dark fruits and chocolate, and a little alcohol.

Mouthfeel. Slightly lower than full bodied, low+ carbonation. Just a bit of warmth.

Overall. A very nice stout. Not getting much from the distinct taste from the sap or honey, but I'm sure they're contributing to the overall nice flavours.

Photo of Docer
4.25/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: (4.5)
- Lovely thick fingers of mocha colored head.. slowly builds up the glass to a point of foaming over. Settles with lace all over the glass to a thin foamy pillow above a very dark stout. Solid jet brown brew which can't be seen through. Very pretty stout.

Smell: (4.5)
- Sweet and grainy chocolate, coffee, and light syrup.. all melded very well. Grassy bitter hops with a slight pine and fruity flare. Hops shine, but don't over do the stout. This smells very good.

Taste: (4.0)
- Lovely sweet chocolate grains, light coffee bitterness, and a fantastic blend of woody syrups. Nice earthy grassy hop flare, and certainly not overly sweet. Nice subtle honey touch as well to it. This puppy is well balanced, and delicious.

Mouth Feel: (4.0)
- Slightly dry but not dry enough for me. Perhaps the sweetness is at fault for that from the syrup and honey. Medium to heavy bodied, well carbonated, and a tad chalky. Overall not too sticky sweet at all.

Overall: (4.5)
- This is a very solid beer, and most likely the best that I have seen bottled from Alaskan. It is very well balanced, and dangerously smooth. A very good job on this one. It's not too sweet, and not too heavy. Certainly a must try.

Photo of isualum12
3.43/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Hmmm. I am mixed on this beer. Pours beautiful. Read head Smells high on the bourbon. (notice I didn't say smoke.).
Taste. Well...at first bourbon and chocolate. By the fourth drink I am left with smoke. Not a lot but smoke for sure.
Mouthfeel is thick with high alcohol.
Overall it is not a big fav. Of mine. I'm glad we got it but I wouldn't get it again.

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.95/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bomber to CBS Snifter.

A - Black with half a finger of brown head.

S - Big hit of smoke up front followed by roasted malts, chocolate and a big sweetness (likely from the honey and birch sap but I don't get those aromas specifically). Some licorice and molasses in the background.

T - Roasted malts and smoke up front that give way to chocolate, coffee and molasses. A very faint dark fruit taste is evident in the background. The big sweetness is present in the palate as well, but is certainly not overwhelming; again the honey and birch sap aren't specifically detected. The ABV is very well hidden.

M - Medium body with a nice chew. Moderate carbonation; a little less carbonation would be preferred.

O - A very good imperial stout.

Photo of EgadBananas
3.14/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours thick and black. Head was a medium tan, light brown color. Retention was nice, and the creamy head left some spongy remains.

Definitely some honey, and a very slight smoke/char. Fair sweetness and roasted quality.

Much more roasted, with hints of chocolate and coffee, but more honey and birch syrup...though I think maple would have gone better. Very minor smoke if at all, which is a little disappointing. Just a lot going on it and it's not predominant enough to really make itself know. There's some alcohol heat too.

Average feel. It's a bit creamy, medium to full in body.

A bit let down by this at this point. I'll hold onto another bottle and hopefully time will do this well, cuz it's kinda a mess currently...

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.7/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 picked up today at the Boise COOP.... poured into my HotD goblet.... Dark brown head has okay retention.. little in the way of lacing.. the brew is of course black.

The nose has pretty pronounced wood up front and the dry dark malts come in behind.. mild dark fruits and come cocoa... lite coffee and a tad more dried cherry.

Flavor mirrors the nose with something that I can only pick out as maybe some brewer's licorice (lite) .. not a much malt presence as I would like in a RIS.... but the woody elements help make things pretty interesting.. a hint boozy on the finish... dirty cocoa.

I don't know what "birch syrup" tastes like, but the odd/but not off-putting woody note is what I guess is what I am pulling down..

Great body for a 9% brew.... not overly thick... still very "coating" ... carbonation is fair to middle... and I bet it is only going to get better... seems very "fresh" right now.. there is a bit too much wood "bloom" and not enough meshing.

Having a hard time with this one.. I definitely see the "bones" of a cellar brew... The wood, honey, etc seem to add too much when fresh. The backbone of a great brew is there.. I will try and score enough to enjoy for a looong time.

3.5/3.5/3.5/4.5/4

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Alaskan Perseverance Ale (Pilot Series) from Alaskan Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 258 ratings.