Imperial Russian Stout - Wellington County Brewery

Not Rated.
Imperial Russian StoutImperial Russian Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

157 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 157
Reviews: 100
rAvg: 3.91
pDev: 10.49%
Wants: 8
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Wellington County Brewery visit their website
Ontario, Canada

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Imperial Stout is patterned after the highly fortified Russian Stouts that were exported from the U.K. to Russia in the 1800s.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-28-2001)
View: Beers (22) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 157 | Reviews: 100 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
3.75/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not the Iron Duke, rather an experimental template on cask at Volo Cafe Cask Day 2006. A good head, medium mouthfeel, and dry and roasty. Between a stout and a real thick Russian one. Worked on cask for stout fans. Had it on cask again 16 months later and it worked very well.
Four years later at C'est What and still very solid, upgraded mouthfeel.

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.78/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a jet black beer with a nice bubbly head with standard retention. Coffee smell is overpowering with some malts lingering in the background. Taste is a nice mix between coffee, chocolate and malts. A bit too much bitterness kicks in at the end. Medium full body with great carbonation for an Imperial Stout. Overall, a very decent drink but not the best Imperial I tasted.

Photo of biboergosum
3.78/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cask at Volo.

This beer appears black, black, black, with very slight tan edges, and zero head or lace. It smells of mild roasted malt, and dry coffee. The taste is a bit stronger, with roasted malt being joined by some more coffee and a spot of dry chocolate; the extra ABV is well hidden. The carbonation is low, the body medium weight and smooth, and it finishes dry and clean.

A decent, if a bit plain, RIS.

Photo of XmnwildX12
2.5/5  rDev -36.1%

Photo of MasterSki
3.8/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to biegaman for this can. Finally working through a backlog of stout. Served in my Surly pint glass.

A - Pours with a finger of dark mocha foam that dissolves fairly rapidly to a ring and some light haziness. Not much in the way of lacing. Body is black, with a hint of transparent brown at the bottom of the glass. Looks like stout!

S - Dark roasted malts, espresso, cocoa, dark fruits, a hint of molasses. For a non-infused stout this is quite nice, but also a little generic. Not on the level of Southampton or Kate, but still very enjoyable.

T - The taste is quite bitter dark chocolate and charred malt, with a bit of dark fruits at the back end There isn't quite enough sweetness to balance things out, rendering this a tad one-dimensional. Alcohol is very well hidden. Aftertaste is also roasted coffee bitterness (unsurprisingly).

M - Too carbonated and thin. Reminds me of some porters I've had recently. There's a little bit of stickiness, but otherwise it's somewhat watery. Not off-putting, but not particularly good either.

D - I dig cans, and I dig stouts in cans. However, I'd rather reach for a Ten FIDY, as it's the superior beer in all areas. I'd be interested to try this on cask, as I think it would help the feel out quite a bit.

Photo of feloniousmonk
3.85/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: fully black, with a 1/4" roasty tan head.

Aroma: mild espresso notes, getting bolder as we go, becoming fulller and more bold, deep & heady, hints of coffee and cocoa.

Taste: sweet and creamy, rich and full, palate is tinged by an overflow and cocoa and cream.

Very nice stout, as it is, but far too meek and missing too many of the requisite flavors, not to mention the strength, to be an Imperial.

Photo of akorsak
3.63/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A 12 oz bottle courtesy of biegaman in my first (and only) international trade.

A: The stout is big and bold, dark as night in the center and cola brown at the edges. The ale has little carbonation, only a small pool of foam on pour and no outward signs of bubbles.

S: Some roasted notes poke through but there is a lot of biscuity grain here, more than I'd expect. As the ale warms, more stout aromas emerge, supplementing the roasted grains with toast and chocolate.

T: The flavor is quite nice, dark and toasted up front with a touch of black cherry and chocolate. Coffee and licorice add darker, deeper dimensions without making the stout too strong. The stout is big but the flavor never betrays the booziness.

M: The mouthfeel starts out slow but improves as the stout warms. The taste is full and coating without being too strong.

D: At 8% one needs to be careful. This would not be my first pick for a RIS but it works well enough.

Photo of Mebuzzard
1.75/5  rDev -55.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Trade from grub. Thanks, I like trying new brews! Even if I don't like them.
Previous high marks for this one made my mouth water. But the sink had the rest of this beer.
Poured a weak looking, thin Cola liquid, absolutely no head whatsoever, none, not after a hard pour, a good swirl, nothing. Horrible looking, but at least it is dark.
Smelled like wet coffee and bad chocolate. Coffee hints can't hide the astringent aroma that dominated.
Tasted like the malts were roasted over a dung-fire, not good at all. Hops had bite, but no flavor. Drinkability? Ask the drain.

Photo of biegaman
3.58/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Off cask at C'est What?, in Toronto.

At only 8%, this 'imperial' may be on the lighter end of the style's scale but it's certainly not on the light end of the colour spectrum. Dark as a winter night, opaque as coal, giving off not a single highlight and, as if the beer didn't look intimidating enough already, even it's head is stained a deep ebony tone. Frankly, it's a little daunting...

This roasty, malty aroma offers hints of black licorice and coffee. Well, coffee beans. Or coffee grinds. And the character is smoky, a wee thin and a tad harsh - more robusta than Arabica. This certainly doesn't have the bells or whistles that most imperial stouts come decked out in, but it's no worse off: simplicity and reserve have their virtues too.

Although it never saw the inside of a barrel, Wellington RIS soaked up lots of dry, woody characteristics somewhere along the way. Along with the heavy, sooty taste of pure, undiluted cocoa, the beer can sometimes hit the palate rather harshly and travel down the throat with a woolly texture. There's also a distant sour note of dark berries.

I won't complain, however, about the beer's bitterness, which is ample. It comes from a generous addition of hops which have also contributed by way of a vine-y, leafy flavour that proves very compatible with the sooty, roasted malts. The overall impression though, it must be said, is far from the most stimulating, dynamic or distinctive the RIS style offers.

Wellington RIS is a pleasant drink and strikes a good middle ground between those options that are too plain and those that are too strong. On the whole, however, it makes for an underwhelming example of the style. Like an aging veteran athlete whose body can no longer keep up physically, a beer with this kind of subtle and collected temperament simply doesn't compete with the new generation of bigger, more exciting stouts.

Photo of liamt07
3.83/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Half pint at C'est What on cask, would've liked to have had it in a snifter, but I guess I'll deal with the pint glass. Pours jet black, almost opaque when held up to the light. A trace of head when I received it, no head retention and no lacing whatsoever. Got some molasses, some cocoa/coffee in the smell. Tasting this I got a bit of the same cocoa/coffee, some mild sweetness and roasty malt. Mouthfeel is a bit thin, lacking body as others have indicated but still pretty good, low carbonation. Not as 'imperial' of a stout as I was expecting. Drinkability is dangerous, half pint was gone in less than 5 mins, as scary as that would be for an 8% ABV.

Photo of Viggo
4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep black, very opaque, big tan head, lots of lace. Smell is very roasty, coffee and chocolate, dark fruits, some alcohol. Taste is roast coffee, into a chocolate middle, some more dark fruits, dry roasty bitter finish. Medium bodied, carbonation is a little high for the style but its silky smooth and a great beer.

Photo of DrJay
4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a big, bold brew.

My pint came with a chocolately brown head that lingered for most of the pint and formed a nice lace down the sides of the glass. It's impossible to see through the beer, but if you catch some light at the edge of the pint you can see the rich reddish brown colour that produces blackness in the glass.

Strong malt and coffee notes in the aroma are complemented by similar flavours that also include chocolate and caramel. Hops offer some balance for the sweetness, but are definitely not prominent. Maltiness gives way to a complex aftertaste where more bitterness is encountered, along with a slight hint of the alcoholic strength of the beer. As it warms up in the glass, the flavour profile changes noticeably, with the flavours mellowing and blending together for a more balanced profile. Definitely a very full-bodied beer that can fill you up fast.

Rarely encountered on-tap, I found it at Phog Lounge in Windsor, ON.

Photo of Derek
4.1/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Black with a tan head, ring of retention, slight lacing.

S: Roasty with a light spicing & fruit, slightly woody.

T: Slightly roasty (smooth), coffee, nut, nice fruitiness, light spicing with a hint of molasses. Good bitterness, warming alcohol.

M: Moderate body has a slightly drying alcohol finish.

D: Great stuff. It's a shame it isn't bottled anymore.

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.98/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On cask at Burger Bar.

A - Poured darr black with one finger of very bubbly light brown head that slowly disappeared.

S - A robust nose with chocolate, maple syrup and coffee. A nice overall sweetness to this one but it also had a complimenting bitterness to balance it out. Agreat nose!

T - Chocolate, coffee, and hints of maple syrup. A slight bitterness in the finish at first but as I continued to drink this one, the bitterness became more and more evident. The taste wasn't quite as over the top as the nose suggested, but this was still a good RIS.

M - Creamy & smooth. Lightly carbonated.

D - This was very good - better on cask than it was on regular draft as I remember from about a year ago.
4 to 4.5.

Photo of wordemupg
3.88/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

473ml can poured into 400ml dab glass oct13 2009

A black with a dark tan head that has average retention and leaves no lace

S coffee mostly not too strong but not bad by any means, and dark malts

T more flavor then smell, I get a lot more chocolate, the booze is well concealed and there is a little sweetness. well put together this beer has a nice balance too it

M not overly thick but creamy enough and pretty smooth

D very good for the strength and well worth trying

I've tried a few other beers from these guys and don't remember them being as good as this, perhaps I should give them another chance

thanks wittaker for this one

Photo of Gusler
4.15/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The quintessential stout color “Ebony”, the head massive, frothy in texture, chocolate brown in color, and the remaining lace a creamy thin sheet to smother the glass, actually a Chimay Chalice as I like my stouts in a big mouth glass, to get the maximum exposure to its treasures. Aroma of dark roasted coffee, bitter-sweet chocolate, malt and a real treat for the senses, sweet milk chocolate sweet at the start, the top chewy and creamy rich. Finish is pleasantly carbonated, masterfully hopped and the aftertaste lightly alcohol bitter, and quite dry, and one fine Imperial Stout.

Photo of TurdFurgison
3.9/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had a pint of this on cask at C'est What, one of 5 casks available while I was there (!). This was dark brown colored with a thin tan foam made up of finely grained bubbles (in other words it looked like a RIS on cask). It smelled really good, roasted and toasted malts with more coffee than I expected, this isn't listed as a coffee stout. The coffee isn't really there in the flavor, more sweet and roasted malts, a little chocolate, and an earthy quality not unlike peat (at least it gives me the impression of wet soil, in a good way). The body is great, light carbonation (cask) which makes this extremely easy to drink quickly. Delicious.

Photo of spinrsx
3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

473ml can from the Ottawa LCBO for 3$ - been wanting to try this for a while

Appearance - Black/Brown colour with an average size fizzy brown head. I can't make out the amount of carbonation showing and there isn't much lacing. The head lasted for only 2 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, chocolate, light smoke, nuts

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, chocolate, and some roasted/toasted nuts. There is also a bit of a smokiness and a bitter coffee flavour and a hint of vanila. It ends with a chocolatey sweet aftertaste with a bit of lingering bitterness.

Overall - I expected a bit more based on reviews, but it's still an above average brew. It needs a bit more sweetness and it comes across as a tad watery for a RIS. There is also something odd with the smell that I can't put my finger on.. something plasticy/chalky.

Photo of dgilks
4.03/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to JohnnyBarman for carrying this from Guelph to Canberra for me. It is much appreciated.

Very dark black colour with a small, short lasted brown head. The head is really short lasting.

Robust, strong roasted malt aroma. Lots of fruity character and some earthy hops. Good, traditional RIS.

Rich, malt and roast flavour with plenty of fruit, strong bitterness and earthy hops. Classic.

Medium-full body with moderate carbonation. Good.

This is a really solid RIS with classic English flavours. No over the top American hop or malt character, just good, strong stout.

Photo of tbeckett
4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cask pint at Brothers Beer Bistro. From notes.

A - Poured black with really loose brown head that was gone fast. Seemed typical of a cask pour. No lace, no retention.

S - Really balanced between coffee and chocolate. Some tobacco and really roasty. Very pleasant.

T - Roast, coffee, chocolate, milk chocolate, iced coffee. Complex and tasty.

M - No carbonation, medium to full body, gentle bitterness. Way too smooth.

O/D - A nice RIS. I'd like to try it canned to see what the carbonation levels would be like and how the flavours would change. This was nice and complex while being smooth as well. A nice one.

Photo of francisweizen
4.08/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pint at C'est What?

Dark ruby brown/black with red edges and a small off-white/beige/tan cappa foam. Aromas are a bit weak/watery, but the roasetd malts are there along with slight burnt toast and mission fig. Taste is all sweet cocoa and roasted malt. Mouthfeel is creamy smooth, but thin, but awesome as this is on cask. Drinkability=killer.

solid effort

Photo of EgadBananas
4.05/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to cattersley for the can!

Pours black, with a medium tan finger of head. Low retention and no lacing. The aroma is roasted malts, chocolate sweetness and a touch of coffee. Not a bold aroma, but good. The taste is quite nice! Chocolate, big roasted notes, some coffee and a hint of bitterness. The feel is definitely creamy, though a bit thinner than most RIS's. Solid medium/upper medium body with moderate carbonation.

A good, well made RIS. Not too filling and not the most robust, but very well drinkable!

Photo of canucklehead
3.83/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark as hell with an ok coffeeish nose this is a well made RIS that works on the subtle approach. The finish is long lasting and the roasty stout flavours show up as part of the blended whole.( My thought might be that this beer shouldn't be cellared longer than a year as it doesn't have a lot of jagged edges to come off through aging.) I did enjoy the drinakbility of the beer as it warmed up. Not a huge RIS but very nice and well made

Photo of tommyguz
4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of andrenaline
4/5  rDev +2.3%

« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Imperial Russian Stout from Wellington County Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 157 ratings.