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Arcadia Imperial Stout - Arcadia Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Arcadia Imperial StoutArcadia Imperial Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

433 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 433
Reviews: 270
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 11.81%
Wants: 26
Gots: 27 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Arcadia Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-09-2003

OG 1090; 59 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 433 | Reviews: 270 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rye726
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours near black with a nice tan head. Nose has roasted malts, dark fruits, cocoa, coffee and hops. Taste is a bit dull and mild, seems to be past it's peak. Medium body is well carbonated but has a thin finish. Not a bad imperial stout, but nothing special either. Good beer to wash down a burger.

Photo of techfed87
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The Bottle is a 2007 vintage. Pours dense and dark, with a strong sour smell to it. It almost gives off the scent of iron or a mix of other heavy metals. While it poured in a jet black, the viscosity of it seems to be a bit lighter than similar beers of the style.

First sip was surprising. Taste was of coffee, syrupy carbon, and dark dark malt. However, there just isn't enough carbonation to really get that flavor onto your pallet without it feeling partially flat.

Other than that, the beer is very nice. Flavors are rich, mucho darko, and tantalizingly bitter. But be it my bottle or the beer in general, the lack of carbonation takes great things away from this.

Photo of SLeffler27
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A rich, dark brown, almost black, beer puts up a scant, dark mocha head that leaves thin rings of lace on the tulip glass. A quick swirl rejuvenates a fine mousse while leaving a thin film.

The aroma is, as expected, molasses and bittersweet chocolate. This is accompanied by pine, rum, figs, and light smoke.

The flavor is that of bitter, roasted malt, milk and some acidity. A strong, early finish becomes more subtle as it lingers.

The full body has a velvet texture and moderate alcohol.

This is a fine beer on its own and opens nicely with warmth.

Photo of bamadog
3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle to a snifter.

Appearance: The pour is black and it looks a little like used motor oil; has barely a fizzle of a deep tan head and it fades immediately to a thin ring around the surface and a thin whisp in the center; body is entirely opaque; oily residue and spotty lacing left on the sides of the glass.

Smell: Deep dark syrupy chocolate; a bit of a smokiness; burnt roastiness is quite strong in the nose as well; slight alcoholic vapor way in the back starts to sneak through as it warms.

Taste: Not too shabby for an imperial stout that's under two bucks; much like the smell, the roastiness is very much upfront, followed by the smoke; there is a deep dark fruity aspect that combines with the chocolate (that is semi-sweet) that is reminiscent of cherries; barely a hint of alcohol in the far back.

Mouthfeel: Body is a little thin for an RIS; carbonation is very light and the body is smooth as well because of that; there is a decent coating left on the roof of the mouth and the cheeks; belly is left a little warm.

Drinkability: Moderate -- I love good stouts and this one's not too bad; mouthfeel could be a little thicker; flavors are solid though; the ABV is a bit high and it sits a little heavy for too many, but it's still good and I wouldn't have a problem drinking it again.

Photo of Ego
3.95/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

after downing the much higher rated stone RIS I decided to pull this one out, this is a 2008 vintage as well...

decent head and lacing here, the head color is medium mocha, the beer itself is black as night with no light penetration, lacing is a bit better than stone but of course the ABV is a bit tamer. decent looking brew.

"bright" chocolate notes, roasty bourbon, alcohol stings the nose if you inhale deeply, barleywine notes lurk underneath as well as some dark raisin upon a good inspection the olefactory vacuum... a nice rounded out aroma.

taste etc...
dark notes of raisin and chocolate, the alcohol is present in the flavor but does not burn the stomach, the mouthfeel is a little light for this style, the carbonation however is sublime... it floats over the palette making this smooth drinking (almost like a baltic porter), exceptionally easy drinking...

around here this is pretty cheap considering the price raises in the past year.. quite a value for a quality beer. A really good RIS.

Photo of tatoodkelt
3.55/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got this one from my buddy 46an2, thanks again Dan!

Consumed 12/5/2009- from notes.

Brown 12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. 2008 vintage.

A- Dark chocolatey brown, almost black topped off with about a half finger khaki head that faded pretty quick. Not much lacing.

S- Alcohol and roasted chocolate.

T- Same as the nose with a little coffee peeking through.

M- Medium to heavy, very smooth and creamy.

D- Definitely a sipper for me. A respectable RIS but probably not one I will look to have again.

Photo of Tone
3.7/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark black color. 1/6 inch head of a pale tan color. Decent retention and decent lacing. Smells of alcohol, roasted malt, and sweet malt. Fits the style of a Russian Imperial Stout. Mouth feel is smooth and creamy with an average carbonation level. Tastes of alcohol, roasted malt, and slight sweet malt. Overall, a strong punch up front (the alcohol is definitely not hidden).

Photo of Richardberg
3.4/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - very dark and viscous, virtually no head

S - lots of semisweet chocolate, some fig

T - sweeter than expected, chocolate is more subdued than in the nose and doesn't hit until savored a bit. Hint of coffee, bitter aftertaste. I don't get the sense these flavors meld & balance each other, more just thrown together.

M - decent oily coat on the tongue, no carbonation to speak of, some creamy fullness but I'd expect more

D - pretty drinkable for a moderately strong RIS, just not worth seeking out over more worthy beers in this style

Photo of brentk56
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2006 bottling - tasted 11/13/2009

Appearance: Espresso black color with a rocky tan head; not the greatest retention and hardly any lace

Smell: Sweetened chocolate, molasses, dark fruit and a vinous character

Taste: Sweet chocolate, up front, with a developing vinous, dark fruit flavor that takes over by mid-palate; after the swallow, the sweeter chocolate re-asserts itself and dominates the finish

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Interesting, but a bit too sweet; perhaps the age has dissipated the balancing power of the hops

Photo of asabreed
4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle into a pint glass. Vintage 2008 on the bottom of the front label.

Appearance: Jet black, and I help the bottle, no joke, six inches from the glass, and it almost didn't budge. A murky, frothy, bog-like head appeared as it slowly sunk down and disappeared for the body of the brew to poke its head out from under. Meaning: this sucker is thick and venomous and insanely big.

Smell: Big dark roasted malts, dark berries, cocoa powder, charred earthiness, a bit of charcoal, sweeter honeyed or sweet chocolate malt flavors going on too. Lots of layers to this.

Taste: Chalky and monstrous roasted malts, charcoal, cocoa powder, bitter chocolate, black coffee, Hersheys chocolate syrup with some sweetness, some dark and ripe berries. One of the biggest stouts I've ever had, especially for only (only? You know what I mean) 8.4%. This can take a long time to sip and savor, more than most I think. Pretty stellar, and doesn't mess around.

Mouthfeel: A monster brew with big chewiness, not too much carbonation, and a good sense of coating but not overdoing it. Helps the flavor to last and is good for distinguishing the layers.

Drinkability: Seriously one of the biggest, baddest RIS I've ever had, which I wasn't expecting. This is one you could literally sip for a few hours with a fire going or watching the snow pile up outside your window. A huge beer with a lot of layers and much flavor. I'll be picking some more up.

Photo of jrallen34
3.3/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle into a tulip.

Dark black pour with an average tan head and lace.

It smells mostly like cold coffee and dark bitter chocolate.

The taste is malty coffee with a dry finish. Not a great palate as it is almost oily. It looks much thicker than it tastes.

Overall a fine stout.

Photo of Georgiabeer
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This Imperial Stout definitely leans toward the vinous side. Pours black and with some noticeable viscosity, but very little head. What there is settles to a thin ring. Smells and tastes vinous with some chocolate and licorice notes and a moderately bitter finish in the mouth. Quite smooth, and a touch tangy. Almost silky as it goes down. A respectable RIS.

Photo of dogfishandi
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle, 2008 vintage, at cellar temp poured into a pint glass. pours opaque black with a dark mocha colored head. pretty small head off of pretty vigorous pour. head deminished pretty quickly to a thin ring, pretty weak retention. hardly any lacing. lots of sediment visible as well.

aromas of burnt roasted malts, anise, solvent alcohol, coffee, dark chocolate, and a little bit of dark fruits.

the taste is once again heavily roasted malts, dark fruits, anise, dark roasted coffee, finishes with a bitter dark chocolate, solvent alcohol taste. the taste is the best part for me, was kinda debating between a 4 and 4.5, but nothing really stood out too much so i went with the 4.

thick heavy body, minimal carbonation. nice creamy mouthfeel. chewy, meaty. prolly wouldnt want more than one in a day, but i could
definately see myself drinking again. pretty average imp. stout, not bad, not great.

Photo of myxomatosis
3.29/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours nice, opaque and black, with about 1/4 inch of a beautiful reddish head. Reduced to a thin head after a minute or so without lacing.

S - Strong aroma of alcohol, with a hint of dark smokiness underneath

T - Very alcoholic, with some fruity undertones. Bitter, but the flavor itself isn't very smoky.

M - Rather thin, average body. Carbonation was about average - not too much of it, and the bubbles were not coarse.

D - Best suited to sipping. Rather unlike any other stouts I've tried - very intense, but not smoky or thick.

Serving type: 12 oz.bottle poured into a mug

Photo of infestaxion
3.96/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Pours inky black with a smattering of bubble on top. Reddish hues around the edges.

S - The smell is pretty subtle. Is that banana? Strange. A tiny bit of malt.

T - Very creamy. A bit of chocolate doughnut. Slightly bitter finish. Definitely a different imperial stout. The alcohol is only showing up after a few drinks as a slight warmness in the back of the throat. Very good compared to the smell.

M - Smooth. Not too thick.

D - This goes down really easy. I would have no problem drinking a couple of these.

Photo of kbeals
3.62/5  rDev -5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Poured into a pint glass. Jet black with no head at all. A little disappointing.

S- Has both roasted and bitter aromas. A bit of dark chocolate along with a hint of smokiness.

T- The taste is also roasted and a bit sweet. Does finish off slightly bitter but with little to no taste of alcohol.

M- It's not as thick as most stouts but is very smooth with little carbonation.

D- Pretty drinkable for a stout. A relatively good offering from Arcadia.

Photo of mhatters
4.44/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a tulip glass at Teresa's in Wayne, PA

A brilliant black pour with a brownish an head, nice and thick

Toasty nose, some coffee, but not too much, as it opened up more fruit exposed.

Chocolate, coffee, and roasted malt provides a fantastic taste, easy to drink, almost too easy. This is a great imperial stout, go find one!

Photo of homebrew311
3.32/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Notes: Vintage 2007, poured in snifter

A: Jet black viscous pour. A nice tan head forms and slowly goes away. Nice lacing around the glass.

S: Smell of chocolate malty sweetness, licorice, and some subtle hops.

T: This has an assertive alcohol burn immediately, followed by the roasty notes with some dark chocolate and a hint of sweetness. The alcohol cools down on the finish and leaves some nice flavors of hops and chocolate.

M: Very sharp on the tongue, medium to thick body, chewy texture

D: A bit hot on the alcohol, has a very nice finish but this does not stand up to many other offerings of the style. Average for an imperial stout, would not seek out again. The rest of these are going in the cellar to hopefully mellow out the burn.

Photo of damienblack
3.72/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours thick, syrupy jet black. Seems kind of dull and lifeless, low carbonation, not much of a head at all. Smells sweet and boozey, not much of a roasty aroma.

Bottom line, this is a very sweet imperial stout. Pretty light for the style, low in carbonation. Tastes toasty and a little burnt without tasting roasty. This was on discount, so I suspect it might have been stock being cleared. This would mean it's got some time on it, which might explain why it tastes a lot smoother to me than to others. It hardly tastes boozey at all. It almost tastes like your standard dry stout, just a good bit sweeter. Mouth is a bit thin and watery. Extremely drinkable, light for the style. It seems this would make a good RIS introduction. It has some nice sweet flavors, but lacks a lot of the roastiness and heartiness from some of the bigger & better RISes.

Photo of alovesupreme
3.33/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter but may be past its prime.
Pours a pitch black with extremely little light penetrating the body.
Smells of black licorice with a slightly sour smell
Black licorice with a malty finish. A slightly sour taste is also present.
A good viscosity but lacking good carbonation.
A pretty good imp. I will not seek out but will drink if available.

Photo of Jwale73
3.67/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle served in my Old Stock snifter (glassware courtesy of Mauerhan). Poured black with no light penetration. Quarter inch head immediately dispersed into a soapy slick with a thin band around the perimeter of the glass; no lacing on this one. Not a huge nose, but a respectable presence nonetheless - cocoa, coffee, black licorice and dark fruit (perhaps a little vinous). Taste follows nose, but much more muted than anticipated - some acidity is detected and lingers between quaffs, coupled with the coffee/cocoa/dark fruit. Mouthfeel is somewhat light and watery for the style - minimal carbonation is evident. Drinkability is decent - alcohol is well-hidden and flavors aren't particularly cloying; however, there are much better examples of the style out there.

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
3.45/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12oz bottle served in a snifter.

L - black with a tan head that thinned to a wall-clinging ring leaving spots of lacing.

S - black licorice and dark fruits.

T - burnt coffee, alcohol and black licorice/black jelly beans (since it's the Easter season at the time of this review).

F - medium/full bodied with a chewy feel.

D - a bit much to sip more than one of these in a sitting.

Photo of danielharper
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Jet-black, completely opaque body with a thin brown head that sticks around.

Smell: Dark malt, some hints of red grapes, very bready, sweet. Perhaps some chocolate-covered cherries? Very complex, very inviting.

Taste: Ooh, a bit of a misfire. Very "hot" with alcohol, pretty much overpowers the palate. Underneath are some nice dry bready malts, some nice bittering hops, and a sweet (but astringent) aftertaste. If the alcohol was a bit less prominent this would get a much higher rating.

Mouthfeel: Not as thick as you'd expect for an RIS. Still heavy, but not exactly super-thick. Coats the palate well.

Drinkability: I may buy a couple of these and try them in six months or so. It's a good beer, but there are much better examples of an RIS out there -- anyplace that has this should also have Bell's Expedition.

Photo of PirateUlf73
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into an imperial pint glass.

A: Very dark, opaque black color. Small tan head died to a layer quite quickly.

S: Dark roasted malts mingled with bittersweet chocolate and coffee aromas. There is also an earthy hop presence in the smell.

T: Lots of the aforementioned roasted chocolate and earthy hop bitterness. Very bitter in fact. The malty bitterness of a stout and the hoppy bitterness of a good ESB blended quite well.

M: Full, heavy and slick feel. Pretty low carbonation and the finish is of bitter chocolate and roast.

D: A decent sipper and an interesting choice for a digestif.

Lots of complex and interesting flavors going on. The assertive bitterness and full body made this an adventure to finish the whole 12 ounces, but it was definitely worth it. Take it slow. This beer gets more and more intriguing as it opens up.

Photo of ClockworkOrange
3.82/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle. The label states this is a 2006 vintage. From a shaker glass, the beer appears a deep brown color with about an inch of creamy ecru foam. The foam dissipates within a few minutes to a thin layer. The alcohol is still pretty evident in the nose even after a few years in the bottle. Along with that are notes of licorice (dominant), molasses, and caramel. The taste is full of richly roasted grains, caramelized malt, bitter mocha, and brown sugar. There is still a noticeable alcohol burn that presents itself in the finish and continues to warm the throat for a few minutes. Moderate in body with medium carbonation. A pretty tasty IS. Time was good to this one.

Arcadia Imperial Stout from Arcadia Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 433 ratings.