Anniversary Ale XV - Real Ale Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anniversary Ale XVAnniversary Ale XV

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

241 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 241
Reviews: 97
rAvg: 3.94
pDev: 10.41%
Wants: 6
Gots: 42 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Real Ale Brewing Company visit their website
Texas, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.80% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: drummermattie02 on 06-25-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 241 | Reviews: 97
Photo of facundoCNB
4.57/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

pours a thick black with a slight foamy ring of carbonation. smells of sweet chocolate, coffee, raisins, dates, vanilla. very sweet flavors of toffee, vanilla, chocolate, and molasses up front followed by a tar-like coffee/roasted bitterness. a very delicious stout with a full mouthfeel.. heavy, rich, creamy, low carbonation - everything you expect from a russian imperial stout.

one of the better RIS i've encountered, and by far the best beer from real ale.

Photo of TMoney2591
3.46/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Freetail 2012 shaker pint glass.

Thanks to twiggamortis420 for this bottle!

I remember having this a while ago, not sure why I didn't make any concrete notes about it, but an opportunity has shown itself for some revisitation. Oh yeah. This stuff pours a very deep black-brown, verging on onyx, topped by a finger of tan foam. The nose comprises roasted malts...and nothing much else, really... Honestly, it just smells like mildly-roasted barley. Straight up. Okay... Oh, wait, there's occasionally a spike or two of booze, as well. Yup. The taste brings in more of the same, along with some bitter dark chocolate and some light pine resin. The body is a hefty medium, bordering on true heft, with a very light moderate carbonation and a chewy feel. Overall, this is still a decent impy stout, but I feel the year has not been kind to it. I'd drink another if given the chance, but I wouldn't hold out very high hopes.

Photo of genitempo
4.05/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Midnight body into a snifter. Khaki-colored head with heavy lace coating the glass.

S - Syrupy chocolate with subtle, roasted malts , hint of a licorice burn/dark fruits

T - Upfront, the chocolate and nutty malt show up, but quickly dematerialize. The strong note is one of bitterness with a blend of dark fruits. The bitterness endures. I encourage you to savor the taste prior to taking your next sip. I've been told that the bitterness if one of coffee and licorice, and I have to disagree. The taste of licorice in beer abiding on your palate is, in my personal experience, unsavory. But this bitterness is different. I feel like it is very citrusy, with a hint of dark chocolate. I think that citrus flavor can be explained by the hops used.

MF - Medium bodies, heedless carbonation. (I have to interject opinion over subjectivity: RIS and Medium body is almost an oxymoron. An Impressive RIS has weight.)

O - The XV is a fantastic beer, especially for Real Ale to bottle. But I must admit, the best way to enjoy this beer is casked and barrel-aged. Hands down, the best beer I've had this year (2012 Pumpkinator was a very close 2nd) was the barrel-age cask of XV. This beer needed to be bottled for all the right reasons, but judging it based on it's bottle is undermining it's potential.

Photo of rudzud
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Received as an extra in a trade poured into a dogfish head chalice.

A - Poured a deep dark brown black hue with a nice one finger mocha that left light side lacing and a very thin blanket.

S - Aromas of light chocolate, roasted malts, bitter grounds, and light soy sauce.

T - Taste is similar to the nose with more bitter roast and slight Russian imperial soysauce.

M - Mouthfeel is a bit on the thin side for my liking. Actually quite thin.

O - Overall this wasn't a bad ris it just was too thin and a bit much soy sauce.

Photo of ghostwalker
4.3/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deep, dark body with a finger of frothy tan head.

Nose is rich dark malt with a piney hop note.

Flavor is reminiscent of GDs Yeti. Rich and smooth, plenty of stout-ness, but with a huge hop bite. Huge malt body gives me molasses, coffee, dates, a hint of soy, then the pine blast finish. Tasty as I could hope for, great stuff.

Mouthfeel is slick and coating, with moderate carbonation, but then there's the hop strippiness on the finish. Really nice.

Overall, an outstanding brew from this Texas brewery. I've never had any of their other beer, but I will look forward to doing so after this treat.

I received this brew as an extra in at least three trades. Glad that I have a couple of more of these to age and enjoy.

Photo of TheHopMonster
4.06/5  rDev +3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours a dark black with a fast dissipating head. Completely black, no light shines through the glass, no visible bubbles; leading to an intensely malted brew.

Smell: Fresh ground coffee, Intense chocolate, and deep earth. Slight sweet tobacco aroma

Taste: Alcohol upfront with sweet malt at the finish. second sip is deep earth with mushrooms; very natural.

Deep imperial stout, intense yet kind with a slight throwback to Irish stouts that have a slight vanilla backbone. Very pleased with its complex taste but it lacks body and a sticking taste. Head dissipates too quickly.

Photo of tut2528
3.51/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Shoutout to fatbeats18 for this one, thanks man!

A: black body, completely opaque even when held up to the light. Creates about 2 fingers worth of light tan colored thick head with phenomenal lacing. Moderate size bubbles stick to the sides of the glass.

S: the usual components of the style are easily picked up. I get a nice balance of coffee grounds, chocolate, so sweet dark fruits, malt, and a touch of vanilla. I also notice some hops lingering in there as well.

T: very similar to the nose (all the same components), except I find more toasted notes here and the alcohol makes itself present.

M: full bodied, leaves a slight toasty aspect on the tongue along with some bitter hops.

O: a slightly above average brew in my opinion. The drinkability is high, I just don’t find it all that much different than other RIS.

Photo of mjurney
3.98/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Black color, can't see through the light. Thick tan color head, looks very creamy. Has a nice lacing on the glass everytime I take a sip.

I get lots of roasted and smokey malts in the nose. Some hint of espresso and dark chocolate.

Deep dark roasted malts up front. Espresso, ripe black cherries, hint of black licorice, there some smokiness in the back end. Peppery finish, yet very smooth. Body is medium-full.

Photo of jaasen64
3.55/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle thanks to SSW117. Split 3-ways in a mini-tasting- 4 ounces each. Poured into Founders snifter.

A- Pours a fairly opaque dark brown black with some light carbonation. Some decent lacing.

S- Some cocoa, light alcohol, light roasted malts. Not too much aroma strength.

T- Cocoa, some booze, very light roastiness, some licorice, and mlats. Pretty average taste for a RIS.

M- Medium bodied, low carbonation, a very tiny bit of heat, fairly smooth, decently easy to drink.

O- This was a nice average RIS. Easy to drink, nothing that really stood out about it though. I enjoyed drinking it, probably wouldn't go out of my way to get it though. We had a few RIS tonight and this was around the middle.

Photo of cavedave
4.02/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thanks to the Tx. trader who shall, due to my poor org. skills, remain nameless.

Pours a darkest brown, glugs in thickly, half inch of dark beige lather, kicks back to a floating island and skimpy ring. Mmmm.

Alcohol spice, licorice and rooty sweet, nice roasty behind it all, burnt caramel and dark malty stone fruit, some bitter like a ghost. Med. strength but what a nice aroma.

You can taste that this is the mellow and meld that a bit of age can do, though that may not be a good thing here. All the flavors of the nose, with cherry the most forward, combine into a really satisfying conglomeration, but one that isn't as out front and in your face bold as a well aged Impy stout can/should be. All together a fine brew, but one that suffers in comparison to many wonderful offerings we are blessed to enjoy.

Thin for style, nicely low carb., juicy but mildly unsatisfying finish, the worst feature of this one.

Not that this one is around much now, but I would gladly get another and recommend an easy score of this now-aged stout.

Photo of gford217
3.62/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark chocolate brown, definitely not completely black, with a small tan head that lingers as a thick collar.

Aroma is sweet with molasses and licorice on top of the roasted malt backbone. There are coffee hints and still some hops hanging on after the months in the bottle.

Taste is hoppy up front with lots of heavily roasted malts and chocolate. There is licorice and coffee before a bitter roasty finish.

Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with more carbonation than I was expecting. Comes across a little watery vs. most in the style.

This is a heavily roasted and hoppy impy stout and a pretty tasty one at that.

Photo of homebrew311
3.83/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received via trade. Poured into tulip glass. Appearance is opaque and jet black, brown head with nice lacing sticks around. The nose starts with a large dose of chocolate malt paired with delicate notes of black licorice and a touch of booziness. I don't really get much in the way of roasted barley on the nose. Dark bitter chocolate comes in big on the taste as well. Lots of depth to the flavor with notes of dark fruit, a hint of herbal hoppiness, and a bit of a boozy bite at the end. The finish is heavy on the bitter side and certainly cancels out any sweetness from the big malt bill. The mouth feel is thick and slightly oily with mild carbonation. Overall, this is a flavor packed Imperial stout that is a little to bitter for my tastes.

Photo of abraxel
3.2/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A - Looks a little thin while pouring, but once it's settled in the glass it's nicely black, with pleasant lacing.

S - Lots of sweet, fruity, dark, plums and raisins, with a shadow of roastiness. It's not very complex or interesting, but smells good.

T - More of those dark fruits, and a fair amount of roasty bitterness and some molasses. The flavors seem a little messy and don't mingle well, though. It's a little one-dimensional for a RIS, but it's not horrible.

M - Weak. Quite thin, with a bit too much carbonation bite.

Overall, not bad, but kinda meh.

Photo of silentjay
3.53/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pitch black with a decent dark mocha head that quickly starts to recede leaving behind decent lacing.

lots of molasses, some woody hops, caramel, toffee, root beer, licorice.

lots of licorice and molasses, mostly molasses. very sweet almost an aged Old Ale malt profile. woody/earthy hops bring in some tobacco leaf and a bit of citrus pith.

full bodied and sticky with decent carbonation (if not too heavy) and a long-lingering sweetness.

well.... I liked it a bit, but not a lot. It's like if you took a 2008 Old Stock Ale and mixed it 75/25 with a fresh Storm King. I'd rather either of those separately, I think.

Photo of DCon
4.05/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on-tap @ the Schlafly Repeal of Prohibition Festival @ the Schlafly Bottleworks in Maplewood, MO. Tapped from the White/Red Tap Handle w/ 15th Anniversary on it into a 16oz Schlafly Cup.

Appearance- Received with a 1 finger, dark brown head that has great retention. Has the deepest brown body you can find in an Imperial Stout. Leaves a few suds behind but doesn't stick.

Photo of kscaldef
3.97/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours very dark, with just a ring of mocha bubbles. Lots of chocolate aroma, with some roasty woody notes. Taste is a mouthful of dark chocolate with enough carbonation to keep it easily drinkable. Medium-heavy body, but dry; not at all syrupy or cloying. Very solid, well-made brew.

Photo of peensteen
3.88/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thank you to LadyOfMuchBeer for sending this my way.

Dark and near black in colour, tan coloured head with some lace left behind. Nose is of coffee and roasted malt, liquorice, bakers chocolate and even some molasses scents show up as well. Taste is of coffee up front, roast and some earthy hop, chocolate of of both milk and dark varieties, more coffee and roast flavours in the finish. Mouthfeel is a little thin but still works well here, lightly carbonated with touches of cream as well. Quite good overall, good drinkability and very flavourful, thanks again for this great extra Laura.

Photo of Sammy
3.92/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Black with a little head. A story in coffee, very fresh tasting. Good for what it is. A nice very coffee tasting IS. Real Ales has picked it up a notch from the basic stuff I tried from them years back. Very good drinkability, and surprising as I am not a coffee drinker. Nicely hopped.thanks for sharing Pino.

Photo of Lawl3ss
3.95/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Cellar temp. 12 oz. bottle poured vigorously into a snifter. No apparent bottling date.

Look- Deep, deep brown, near black, with lighter hints around the edges. Two fingers of dense puffy chocolate milk-colored head that sits there for what seems like forever. Dense rings of lace left as the glass empties.

Smell- Crushed licorice root is the first thing to mind, followed by bittersweet chocolate. Dark molasses, hints of burnt grain. Swirling brings out a stronger chocolate character and a bit of booze.

Taste- Mild pine-y hop bite at the sip, followed by a tangy malt profile reminiscent of quality microbrew root beer. Strong milk chocolate throughout, hints of espresso. Finishes a bit boozy and earthy. Aftertaste is of dark bitter chocolate and faintly raisin-esque, perhaps dates. Alcohol is well masked.

Mouthfeel- Smooth, but on the light side for an RIS. Light carbonation that flip-flops between smooth and prickly. Crisp on the sip, fairly easy drinking. Not as dry as expected.

Overall- It's pretty good, and definitely worth the price, but it doesn't put forth anything I haven't seen before. Hides the alcohol better than most, and it's more drinkable than the average RIS. Tasty as well, but stops shy of blowing my mind. I'll look for it on tap, though I don't know how available it is.

Photo of chanokokoro
3.65/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to mhenson42 for this brew.

12 oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Jet black with a foamy one finger tan head that quickly dissipates.

S: Deep bold smell of chocolate, toffee, anise, roasted malt and a touch of fruit.

T: Chocolate up front transitioning to heavy roasted malt and raisins closing with bitter espresso.

M: Fairly well-bodied but I would like just a bit more in a RIS. Silky mouthfeel that disappears just a bit too soon.

O: A solid RIS that hovers above average, but falls short of being great. Very much enjoyed trying my first offering from Real Ale.

Photo of Siggy125
3.73/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle to tulip glass. Dark espresso black in color. Pillowy tan head leaving lots of lacing on the glass.

Burnt roasted malts on the nose with resiny hop presence.

Taste similar to aroma. Burnt toffee and malts with burnt black coffee overtones. Hefty hop presence, but seems to mellow with temperature increase. Dark bitter chocolate on the finish with a strange lingering salty-sweetness.

A fairly bold RIS with medium body mouhfeel. I apired with some smoked almonds, very nice.

Photo of gtermi
3.71/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The Beer pours a very nice dark brown/ black body with a nice inch thick brown head.

S: There is a bit of roasted malt on the nose, but other than that, there just isnt that much to me.

T: Now this is where the beer really shines to me. It has a lot of great roasted malt with a very strong amount of alcohol. As the beer lingers, you start to pick up some chocolate and coffee flavors.

M: This is very smooth for an Imperial Stout, but it has a little burn on the back of the throat. Nothing too great, but not bad either.

O: I really enjoy almost all that Real Ale puts out and this was another great one. I wish this was one of their year-round beers because I would get this all the time.

Photo of thagr81us
3.97/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks goes out to my boy caSSino for sharing this one while hanging out at NoDa Brewing. Served from bottle into a NoDa sampler shaker. Poured pitch black with a minimal khaki colored head. Maintained decent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of roasted malt, dark chocolate, dark fruit, and wood. The flavor was of sweet malt, dark fruit, dark chocolate, and alcohol. It had a heavy feel on the palate with mild carbonation. Overall this was a fairly decent brew. I wasn’t expecting much on this one unfortunately. However, this was a fairly nicely put together brew overall. The aromas and flavors on this one were really well balanced which made this a fairly easy to drink RIS. Comes in a 12 oz bottle, so feel free to pick some up for a party as I’m sure it will be a big hit with the beer guys at a party.

Photo of chocosushi
3.65/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

4oz->Smokestack Tulip
Picked up at Spec's in Austin
There is a space for a 'Bottled By' stamp that is left blank in this beer's case...

A ~ Pours black with a mahogany/brown edge to it. Nice head that slowly dissipates into a swirling ring. Slight lace. Viscous.

S ~ Whiffs of grapefruit & kumquat buried beneath dark malts & rum soaked wood with hints of red apple. Touches of herby notes (anise & basil). Thick & Organic in smell.

T ~ Espresso grounds, tree bark & dark chocolate. Theres a mellow caramel note mid palette that quickly shift back to chocolate. Cinnamon Raisin Bread carries throughout. Hints of firewood & bourbon after awhile.

M ~ Sharp bitterness followed by brief sweetness, with an immediate smack of a dry finish with a tingling hop bitterness resonating through. Esters become aggressive after some time. Becomes smoky upon sitting.

D ~ Very nice stout that I am glad made it into 4-packs as opposed to bombers. Worth a shot, even though the price is a tad high. A good, not great Imperial by any means. Intensely bitter

Photo of kmatlack
3.65/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12 oz bottle into my Stone Brewing snifter.

A- A black pour rendered a very small mocha colored head that disappeared into the beer. Dark brown around the edges. No lacing on the glass.

S- Smells of dark malts, licorice, chocolate, marsh-mellows, surprising amout of citrus hops on the nose. Little bit of booze. Have had this in the cellar for about 6 months now. Had this fresh and dont remember there being this much of a hop profile back then. Weird.

T- Sweet on the tongue up front, licorice, molasses, little bit of bakers chocolate. Mid palate is pretty boozy with more molasses and brown sugar. On the back end, there is a lasting licorice taste and biscuits.

M- Not as thick as id like, still decent though. The beer is a little boozy but pretty drinnkable.

O- I like Real Ale beers. This is the first stout from them ive had. A good offering nonetheless.

Anniversary Ale XV from Real Ale Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 241 ratings.