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Russian Imperial Stout - Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant

Russian Imperial StoutRussian Imperial Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

163 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 163
Reviews: 96
rAvg: 4.19
pDev: 8.35%

Brewed by:
Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant visit their website
United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Full-bodied stout that starts with a complex, malty sweet and high-roasted character that is wonderfully balanced with the use of citrusy American hops.

75 IBU

(Beer added by: mophie on 12-13-2002)
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Ratings: 163 | Reviews: 96 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of RblWthACoz


4.43/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a great beer. And it's just dying to be aged out. Great malt tones, nice chocolate, very mild roasted tones. Extremely thick, but not obnoxiously so. Great feel. This is really a spectacular beer. Hits exactly what an ris should be. I wouldn't mind having more of this to age.

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2013 05:27:13 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of Huhzubendah

District of Columbia

4.43/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Shared by Megan. Thanks!

The beer is a deep dark brown with minimal head. Big chocolate roast and char aroma. The flavor follows suit. Rich and viscous with fairly low carbonation. Alcohol content hidden gracefully. Overall, a splendid beer and terrific example of the style. I would relish the opportunity to have this again.

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2013 01:53:33 | More by Huhzubendah
Photo of claspada

New Jersey

3.9/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a pitchblack colored topped by a full, bubbly, khaki-colored head that leaves some minimal lacing as the head recedes.

Aromas begin with roasted, acrid dark malts with notes of baker's chocolate, stale licorice, burnt bread crusts and emerging alcohol notes..

The tastes begin with melted milk and dark chocolate followed by some caramel sweetness. Hints of toasted bread crusts, espresso roast and licorice. Mild, roasty, earthy bitterness.

The mouthfeel is medium to full-bodied with mild carbonation. Finish is dry and roasty from the ample dark malts.

Overall a very solid beer from an unknown local brewpub chain. A bit one noted and straight-forward in the flavor profile but enjoyable none-the-less. Not sure what it cost to acquire but I enjoyed my pour. Do I need to have it again, no, but I wouldn't turn it away in the future.

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2012 15:09:41 | More by claspada
Photo of inlimbo77


4.23/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle. 2011 version. Enjoyed back in Oct. at the West Chester Restaurant, and video reviewed. Served in a Iron Hill tasting chalice glass, about 12oz.

A: Poured out basically pitch black, aside from some reddish hues around the edges. It's thick, but not the thickest brew I have seen. I got about a quarter finger of light tan head initially that faded pretty quickly. It left some nice lacing sheeting and bits. I got some alcohol feet as well.

S: Lots of coffee and chocolate. Roasted malts. Bittersweet dark chocolate for sure. Maybe a touch of dark fruitiness behind it all. Primarily the chocolate and roasted coffee.

T: Right up front you get that dark chocolate and coffee bitterness that you took from the nose. In the middle of the mouth you are getting a lot of that roasted malt character, coupling with the chocolate. Coats the mouth nicely. It's bitter but not overly bitter.

M: Full mouthfeel. Not overly chewy and viscous.

Serving type: bottle

06-26-2012 19:21:28 | More by inlimbo77
Photo of kawilliams81

Yukon (Canada)

4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750 ml bottle into a Surly Darkness snifter.

A- pours black with a 1 finger tan head. Small bubbles cling to the glass.

S- big dark chocolate and roast aromas.

T- roast, dark chocolate, bitter coffee, and some slight sour dark fruits at the finish.

M- medium body and carbonation. Slightly dry and chalky.

O- good RIS. Has nice chocolate and roast notes.

Serving type: bottle

06-26-2012 01:30:18 | More by kawilliams81
Photo of Ultraman9000


4.23/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml corked and caged bottle (Wilmington, DE), from late 2010/early 2011 trade, poured into my Great Divide snifter. Bottle notes: 2003 GABF Gold Medal, 2006 World Beer Cup Bronze; 1.095 OG; 75 IBU.

A: Gentle pour yields a thin layer of cream-colored head, which quickly dissipates to leave a ring of bubbles and nice lacing around the edge. Very dark in my snifter, with slight brown highlights appearing when held close to a light.

S: Slightly toasty. Caramel, brown sugar, possibly blackstrap molasses. I also get a hint of dark fruits, for a subdued but pleasant aroma overall.

T: Initial flavors of sweet dark chocolate and vanilla/caramel are followed by the dark and toasty notes evidenced in the nose. Makes me think of tree bark, in a good way (perhaps the roast is tricking my senses). As it warms, a bit of biscuit and coffee emerge as well.

M: Light and prickly carbonation, with medium+ body. The small bubbles dissipate quickly on my tongue, leaving a slight bitterness that hints at the hops that were undoubtedly once more present than they are now.

O: A well-balanced, dark 'n roasty RIS that incorporates sweet malty notes without becoming cloying. Excellent mouthfeel and flavor balance makes it especially drinkable for almost 10%, and I had no problem finishing off the bottle by myself.

Serving type: bottle

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2012 11:28:33 | More by Ultraman9000
Photo of DarthKostrizer


4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Mrvonzipper for sharing this one

Look: Black and totally opaque with brown rings around the edges and absolutely no head a bit surprising

Smell: The nose is very bright with lots of roasted malt and chocolate greating you right away with hints of coffee and some alcohol in the backdrop

Taste: The flavor is just as good as the nose with the same notes greeting you right away. roasted malt and chocolate blend extreme well and create a wonderful balance of flavor. The background carries some roasted coffee dark fruits and a whiff of vanilla

Mouthfeel: Full body and low carbonation

Overall: Great beer I am glad I got the chance to try this one. After trying the Iron Hill bourbon barrel quad which was an infected mess I was a bit hesitant about the brewery but held back judgement and this one delivered big time

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2012 20:26:40 | More by DarthKostrizer
Photo of pitasoup


4.05/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

from blind bif 6, thanks to hophead101 for the bottle.

A: pours slow like molasses, black, rolling brown carbonation that fades up into creamy brown head. dark and murky, edges leak out some brown when held up and tilted, but otherwise no light is coming through. 4

S: chocolate, lots of chocolate, toffee, molasses, very small hints of whiskey, vanilla, willamette, and burnt grains. 4.5

T: similar to the smells but not very sweet. in fact, the first flavors are black-patent like burnt malts. the chocolate, molasses, whiskey blowup that i was expecting wasn't there at all. what's happening here? vanilla comes out as it sits 4

M: medium to medium-full, lighter than the pour and color would have suggested though. slightly astringent/tart from darker/burnt grains. warming after the swallow and ever so slightly solvent on the tongue. 3.5

O: a big ass chocolate stout? the smells are fantastic, but the taste doesn't deliver, overall a pretty solid beer but it use some more pop in the flavors. after letting it warm up for 30mins or so, smooth and delicious vanilla begins to mix nicely. bumping up a few points for great balance and drinkability at room temp, wow i wont even bother chilling this next time 4

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2012 18:01:58 | More by pitasoup
Photo of ehammond1

4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5


Thanks for opening this, MrVonzipper!

Deep black in color with a thin brown head. Looks thick and substantial in the glass.

Big, complex aroma of roasted malt, espresso, dark chocolate, a bit of dark fruit, and a bit of candy sugar sweetness as well. Complete.

This is simply a marvelous example of the style. Big, bold flavors of roasted malt, coffee, dark fruits, chocolate, and just a bit of sweetness. Big flavors, bold and assertive, yet balanced and drinkable.

Medium to full bodied with moderate carbonation.

A great example of a favorite style.

Serving type: bottle

02-05-2012 19:32:11 | More by ehammond1
Photo of larryi86


4.55/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle from the Newark location poured into a tulip

A- Black with a three finger tan head.

S- Dark chocolate, roasted malts, caramel malts, faint coffee, some piney hops.

T- Dark chocolate, caramel mats, roasted coffee, some hops in the finish, very well balanced.

M- Medium to full body, smooth, nice creaminess.

O- A nice RIS, 9.5% ABV is very well hidden. Not the most complex beer and I little on the pricey side, but worth trying of you get the chance!

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2012 01:46:54 | More by larryi86
Photo of rtaps


4.4/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pours black with a nice tan head, decent retention leaving minimal lacing, and slightly viscous looking
very nice nose on it, nutty chocolate, some coffee and roasted malts.

taste is great kind of fallows the nose. nutty chocolate, roasted malts, with some coffee there all blended nicely

medium bodied and carbonation.

overall its a good RIS wouldn't mind getting another one

Serving type: bottle

02-01-2012 18:14:06 | More by rtaps
Photo of UCLABrewN84


4.4/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to MrVonzipper for sharing this one during his tasting!

Pours an almost opaque super dark brown with a khaki head that settles to an oily film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form on the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa powder, slight dark fruits, and alcohol. Taste is of dark roasted malt and cocoa powder. There is a nice roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good RIS with some solid aromas and flavors.

Serving type: bottle

01-29-2012 23:34:12 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of aasher


4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This bottle was randomly given to me by Rempo (Mark) after he had heard that my grandfather passed away. I had never met him before but he came in and gave me the bottle along with a handwritten note giving his condolences. It was one of the kindest moves of advocacy I've seen yet. Thank you, Mark, immensely for giving me this Want out of sheer kindness and advocacy.

This beer pours a full bodied dark chocolate brown, very smooth and velvety, with a two finger very creamy mocha brown head. It looks exactly like a RIS should. The aromas are smooth, soft, and creamy. You get smooth dark roasted malts, ala coffee and cream, with a moderate amount of milk chocolate. I actually get some milk too, like hot chocolate. The flavors consist of roasted malts, milk chocolate, mocha, coffee bitterness, with a slight nut character. The bitterness is a little strong than anticipated and is really the only thing holding it back. Otherwise, it features nice complexity. It drinks very, very smoothly and is near perfect in body. It's just so creamy. The alcohol isn't present at all and despite being full in body, it isn't overly filling or overly thick. It drinks ultimately well. Overall this is a fine beer and a great representation of the style. I'm very glad I could try it.

Serving type: bottle

12-19-2011 03:59:30 | More by aasher
Photo of mdaschaf


4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Shane for popping this bottle open.

A: Pours a dark brown color, practically black, with a small tan head on top. The small head lasted a good while and reduced to a thin layer on top. Minimal lacing.

S: Rather sweet with some chocolate, dark roasted malt, some dark fruit, and a surprising amount of hops by the way of light citrus and pine.

T: A good bit of roasted malt, coffee, and some chocolate. On the sweet side, with some cream, and more milk chocolate.

M: Medium to full bodied with low carbonation. Drinks a little thick, but smooth.

O: Very easy drinking with a nice flavor profile. Not overly complex, but I have no problem with that at all.

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2011 18:31:10 | More by mdaschaf
Photo of biglobo8971


4.4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured into tulip. The color is black as hell, with a great foamy 1 inch head. The nose is malty, with a slight hint of chocolate. The taste is exceptional, very well balanced between the malt, roast, chocolate sweetness, with a terrific finish. Not over anything, just solid all the way around. Will put on wants and seek out more in the future.

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2011 03:10:25 | More by biglobo8971
Photo of drabmuh


4.4/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Darkness tulip. Beer is black / brown at the bowl with a tan head that disappears quickly, low carbonation, no lacing.

Aroma is sweet with a strong roast to it. Mild alcohol too.

Beer is medium in body, sweet up front, malt and alcohol, strong flavor, almost a dry finish with a lot of roast at the back end of the beer. The beer feels almost still in my mouth, plain but very flavorful, sweet, almost vanilla. I like it and would have it again.

Serving type: bottle

11-05-2011 01:32:44 | More by drabmuh
Photo of eclipse54


4.28/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A corked and caged 750 mL bottle from inlimbo77; thank you! I couldn't find a date code, but It's probably a recent batch and I know it's from the Wilmington, DE location (per the label). Poured into a snifter...

Pours completely black with a centimeter of beige/khaki head that lingers for a decent amount of time considering the alcohol content. It leaves scattered patches of wet bubbles on the glass as it subsides.

The aroma is of roasted malt, some dark coffee grounds, brown sugar, caramel, and some chocolate molasses. The alcohol is completely hidden in the nose. The taste begins with some caramel and vanilla notes, moves into the molasses and roasted malt, and finishes with some dark fruits, coffee, and sugar. A warming alcohol presence is found in the very end.

Mouthfeel is very good, having a crisp, yet rich texture that gives it a velvety smooth feel. It finishes a touch dry, but not sweet or sticky. Very well done. Overall, this is a very, very good RIS that is certainly deserving of the silver medal it received at GABF this year.

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2011 23:42:14 | More by eclipse54
Photo of KAP1356


4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've been waiting a while to try this one. 750 ml corked and caged bottle, purchased from the West Chester location, from the most recent batch, poured into a Weyerbacher tulip...

A - Pours a completely opaque black with a nice, fizzy, foamy, khaki colored head that forms about .5 fingers thick. No real lacing.

S - Roasted malts, some nuttiness, roasted coffee and lots of fudge-like chocolate. Milk and dark bakers chocolate make a strong impression along with some nice dark fruits. There is a nice earthiness to the nose.

T - Coffee first but like the nose, the chocolate takes over. Milk, dark, brownie like chocolate really comes through along with some dark fruits, making it sweet on the palate. There does seem to be either a slightly smoked taste or a deep roasted malt flavor along with it. I really enjoyed this taste!

M - Medium bodied but just bordering on being full bodied. Creamy and smooth with a nice level of carbonation (more than expected).

O - Thoroughly enjoyed this beer. I didn't expect it to have such a rich flavor and chocolate like presence. Will absolutely seek this one out again in the near future.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2011 13:22:58 | More by KAP1356
Photo of jwinship83


4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml corked and caged bottle traded to me from user InjuredReserve. thanks! drank from my stone IRS snifter.

A- the beer pours out an opaque black body with a taller than expected khaki colored head on top. the head takes its time falling, and leaves behind small rings of lacing. very nice.

S- the first thing i pick out of the nose are roasted malts. after that i get some chocolate (both milk and dark) followed by a little bit of black licorice. coffee and earthy hops move in towards the end.

T- the taste starts out with more of the dark roasted malts that i could smell before moving onto some chocolate. both milk and dark are represented, but the dark makes a stronger showing. the little bit of black licorice that i was able to smell seems to have grown in the taste, but nothing near the offensive level (think belgo anise IRS). earthy hops and espresso on the finish. a little bit of alcohol shows throughout.

M- the body is on the lower side of full. the carbonation is a nice and subdued level. moderate alcohol warmth. very smooth.

O- this is a very good and under appreciated RIS. this is something id love to be able to pick up again. check this out if you get the chance.

Serving type: bottle

07-24-2011 00:38:19 | More by jwinship83
Photo of Knapp85


4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This poured out as a very deep brown color. The head was tan and left behind a light amount of lacing. The smell of the beer has a little bit of a spiciness to it. The nose also has a burnt chocolate aroma. The taste of the beer has a heavy roasted malt taste. There is also plenty of chocolate and some hoppy bitterness in there too. The mouthfeel of the beer has a good thickness to it. Decent oily feel to it. Overall this beer is pretty good for sure. Not my favorite RIS. But not bad, definitely worth trying.

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2011 02:08:34 | More by Knapp85
Photo of SpeedwayJim

New York

3.85/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 vintage (not noted but I knew when I bought it and it was fresh at that time). Poured from a corked and caged 750ml bottle into a Darkness snifter.

A: Standard pour yields a .5 finger fine light mocha head with good retention. Beer is an opaque black. Lacing is stringy and sparse with little cling, small legs too. The nice head and lack of lacing cancel each other out in scoring. Average.

S: Nose is moderately aromatic. Raisins, roasted malt, rich molasses, brown sugar, chocolate, liquorice, and prunes. Solid, but nothing really sets this apart.

T: Opens with some boozy spiciness. Notes of raisin, chocolate, roasted malt, cocoa, and brownie along with a subtle hop bitterness that fades quickly. Sweet and robust. Middle is more liquified dark fruit and milk chocoalte. Finish is molasses sweetness with some coffee in the back. Aftertaste is molasses and liquorice. Complex and very balanced. Nice.

M: Medium bodied with low to moderate carbonation. Oily and slick in the mouth. Warm and silky going down with the slightest bit of heat at the end. Finish is messy with an aftertaste that lingers. Pretty standard but the way the alcohol is hidden is nice.

O: This is solidly in the upper tier of Russian Imperial Stouts that I've tried. No overwhelming flavors are present. Instead, there's a real nice balance of dark fruit, hop bitterness, and Imperial Stout characteristics. Those GABF medals were well deserved.

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2011 23:08:27 | More by SpeedwayJim
Photo of colts9016


4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from notes. Drank October 20 2010, I got this beer from a BIF. I poured the beer into a pint glass at 50 degrees.
Appearance: A nice medium tan head that is one finger thick; moreover, the head left a touch of lacing on the glass and it is creamy, frothy, and foamy. The color of the beer is dark brown, like used motor oil. The clarity of the beer is opaque; however there is some carbonation bubbles on the side of the glass.
Nose: The malt is rich dark, a burnt note, caramel, and a biscuit note. Other aromas are phenols, fruity esters, chocolate, coffee, solvent, yeast, and grassy.
Taste: A very rich dark malt with caramel, a hint of burnt malts, and a biscuit note. Other flavors are fruity esters, wood, solvent, coffee, chocolate, yeast, and a note of phenols.
Overall: The mouth feel of the beer is warming, coating, and chewy. The body of the beer is medium thick and the finish is medium. This beer is a good RIS; however, I feel that the beer lack a bit of balance. I enjoyed drinking this beer, would like to try more from this brewery.

Serving type: bottle

05-24-2011 00:17:47 | More by colts9016
Photo of Khazadum


4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It looks like I'm down to two bottles left to review. Hopefully I'll find one more! The lady had hidden one away that I just found today. So psyched. Another easy choice of glassware. Pint or snifter. As if there was any doubts.

A- Fantastic retention on a creamy head. Coloration of marshmellow just beginning to brown over an open flame. Deep brown... murky brown fluid. Deceivingly inky darkness, but actually a dark brown liquid. Not too much carbonation in it at all. The stickiness of the froth could use some work. Has a nice lacing regardless. Just not the best.

S- Earthen brown sugar. Strong roasted coffee grounds with the bitterness of espresso to boot. Throw on top the classic toasted malt aroma. Is that burnt grains too? Something interesting as well. Cotton fibers or just plain cellulosic material.. paper... Hmm. Secondary notes are a dark fruit that is similar to dates on the back end. Mostly as it warmed.

T- Opens beautifully roasted. The coffee flavors are good, but its the mixture of this coffee ground flavor into the roasted grains that is frickin' amazing. Totally one of the best combinations I have ever encountered in all the fantastic beers I've run through. Following that is a bittered acrid burnt grain that was hidden behind the wall of roasted power. It starts to perk itself up and roll on into the finish. Minor alcoholic power, burnt and bitter grain that doesn't ruffle my feathers like most stouts, and some funk... its not brett funk, but more like gunk funk. Goofy, almost plant-like. Warming it a bit has the finish incorporating a dark chocolate characteristic. T-t-t-tasty!

M- Creamy, smooth, and full bodied. Very slick and velvet powered. Chewy. The carbonation is very low and minimal giving some hits in the center of the tongue that is all beneficial; no harm. Sticky flavors and minorly in terms of the fluid.

D- I really like this beer. It is one hell of a stout. Just a plain American Stout in my opinion. Nothing too overwhelming, too alcoholic, too roasted, too bitter. Just extremely well balanced and delicious. Hell I wouldn't put it past 6.5% from how I feel after what I've drank. I want more of this to share. Hell I want to bring this with me to DLD. I feel it would be a perfect beer around 9am that day.

Serving type: bottle

03-29-2011 02:54:35 | More by Khazadum
Photo of Stigs


4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle, purchased from the Media brewpub last summer

served in a large snifter

A - pours with a bit over a finger of fizzy, khaki colored foam. the the beer goes down, so too does the foam, leaving some random wet spots behind. the beer is black, black, more black...no light geting through here.

S - very mineraly at first, though cut into off the front by some rich roasted malt, toasted nuts, ash, and bits of dark chocolate. gets slightly muddled from there, with some molasses and alcohol coming to life near the end. very nice.

T - right off the bat, a vicious attack of deep roasted malts meshes with ash and a hint of rum. then opens up a bit with an ample amount of sweetness, vanilla beans, molasses, and just a faint hint of dark fruit. a small amount of piney hops are still present as well, though a very minor bit of oxidation has already occurred. finishes on the sweet side, black licorice & dark chocolate before being cut into by some booze.

M - only complaint so far, body is a touch thin which is emphasized by the robust and complex flavors. carbonation is a quarter step above moderate, tingly though words well against the slightly watery body. sweetness is a touch oily, and not dry and sticky.

D - very well done, a bit better than i was expecting. this is solid all around: complex, rich, well integrated and not too fancy. who needs barrel-aged beers with regular RIS'es like this floating around. luckily i will be in the area shortly and will surely pickup another bottle.

Serving type: bottle

03-12-2011 04:15:24 | More by Stigs
Photo of Phelps


3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Received from Hophead101 in the Blind Beers BIF, this big 750 was poured into my Bruery tulip and reviewed blind.

Pours a syrupy brown that coalesces in the glass to extreme ebony. This is dark magic. It's topped by a fuzzy one-finger head of oak that descends slowly, becoming a rather filmy top layer.

Smells green. Lots of pine, oak and a backbone of dark roast, with smoke, maple and molasses. It's pretty subdued.

The flavor: smoked cedar, powdery cocoa, some black molasses. In the back is a very subtle burnt flavor, with additional flavors of licorice and bubble gum.

Nice body. Pillow-soft medium, silky across the tongue. Very low, tickly carbonation, subtle fizziness. Some alcohol comes through the nose.

I downed the entire 750 in an hour, if that says anything about this beer's drinkability. Nice, though I could use a bit more roasty flavor.

Serving type: bottle

02-28-2011 18:11:00 | More by Phelps
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Russian Imperial Stout from Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant
93 out of 100 based on 163 ratings.