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Big Eddy Russian Imperial Stout - Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Big Eddy Russian Imperial StoutBig Eddy Russian Imperial Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

474 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 474
Hads: 1,225
Avg: 3.84
pDev: 20.83%
Wants: 50
Gots: 158 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: jj21 on 10-27-2007

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (46) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Big Eddy Russian Imperial Stout Alström Bros
Reviews: 474 | Hads: 1,225
Photo of Brad007
4.57/5  rDev +19%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I'd read about Big Eddy in ads but never saw it til now.

Pours a pitch black with a thin brown seal into my glass. When it comes to this style, the darker, the better.

Licorice, toffee, tobacco and roasted coffee with a touch of cocoa in the nose. Seems to support the claim on the label.

Flavor is equally complex with licorice, toffee and roasted coffee. Very little of anything else unless you count the alcohol itself. It's a bit "warm" but should age nicely.

Lingering toffee and tobacco notes finish off this RIS.

It is distinctive and goes beyond the "coffee & cream" bombs that pass for RIS. Should age marvelously.

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Photo of MickeyBeer
3.76/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Had this beer on tap at the Firkin served in a 4 oz sampler glass

A- Really great looking beer. Poured a totally black, opaque color, with a tan head that left some really nice lacing.

S- Smell is sweet and chocolaty with coffee aromas as well. Smell not as awesome as the appearance.

T- Taste has a variety of sweet flavors that has just enough hop balance to go along with it to keep it from being too sweet. Some nice chocolate, toffee, and coffee flavors.

M- Full bodied beer that has a nice feel to it. Smooth and easy drinking.

O- A good imperial stout. When I first had it I did not know it was by Leinenkugels. Was surprised at how tasty this beer really was.

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Photo of Braz
3.82/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bought from Tacoma Boys. Pours a dark rich brown with a tan head. Smells of malt, maple, chocolate and a slight dose of roasted coffee. Tastes are woody and roasted. Pretty comparable to the aromatic notes. Lightly sweet. Alot more carbonation than I have experienced with this style. Enjoyable but not the best I've had of the Imperial Stouts.

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Photo of craft_shannie
3.51/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A: pours thick and syrupy. black, opaque, w. 2 finger dark beige head; beautiful lacing (the whole imperial pint glass worth).
S: chicory; acrid burnt malt; sweet dark fruit; molasses.
T: starts off w. a sweet malt that immediately turns on to full-on bitter chocolate/roasted coffee explosion; subtle smoke.
M: medium body; dry and acrid bitter; smooth - but not creamy.
O: i first tried Big Eddy at a hotsy-totsy tasting event & it was my favorite of the Miller/Coors offerings (yeah, big compliment). It does stand out as a BMC offering but lacks a bit of refinement to really be big-league chew. It's complex in a way that my BBQ sauce can be if I've had too many beers while cooking in the kitchen.

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Photo of scot_chale
4.43/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- big fat black body, syrupy and thick looking during the pour, and a paper thin tan head that all but disappears.

S- chocolate, espresso malt. you have to get fairly close to it to get that out. dark bing cheeries are hiding in there too.

T- that is imperial. it's big. it's full bodied. it's bitter. it's coffee. i like. it's a goddamn attention grabber and i approve. that same dark cherry or blackberry fruit hint is there, but it's so subtle you have to take a second or third taste to notice it.

M- slick and oily with a slight snap of carbonation, but it's very mild. it's just what i'm looking for in this style at this level of my education.

O- I'm giving this a 4.5 overall because I don't know that much about russian imperial stouts. I didn't expect as much out of this beer given that leinie's made it. But, wow. I don't care who made it, this is great. If Big Eddy is the series to help keep their reputation in check, i'm on board. I would buy a 4 pack of this and share it with my homebrewing friends. I intend on trying the other Big Eddy offerings as soon as possible.

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Photo of GSX1250FA
2.34/5  rDev -39.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.75

Really did not like the taste of this beer. Hard to pin down exactly but it has a malty taste that is really objectionable, sort of like a cross between rubber and tobacco. Aging may improve it a little, but I still think it would be pretty bad even after 3 years.

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Photo of JethroAdam
4.09/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I don't rate a lot, but I don't feel like this is getting the respect it deserves. Just had a year old bottle, and it's better than most imperial stouts, which is saying a lot for such a large brewery. There is nothing to be disappointed in here; so I don't get the lame reviews. I haven't seen any really bad descriptors. Looks at the bro's review, the words don't match the score on most anyone's.

That being said this beer is a deep blackish brown with no light passing through, thin persistent tan head. Aromas of burnt caramel, chocolate and molasses. The flavor is a complex mix of dark sugars balanced by heavy roast, the faintest fruitiness and balancing hop bitterness. The mouth feel is very full, with a sight slick finish.

Very enjoyable.

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Photo of Jwale73
3.52/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle served in a tulip. 2012 vintage. Pours one shade shy of black with a loose, quarter-inch, khaki-colored head. Head eventually disperses into a thin, tight band around the shoulders. Strands of lacing are revealed during the tasting. Nose is a bit dull - artificial sweetener, suggestions of lactose, dark malt and a slightly vinous quality. Taste reveals more malt and roast, as well as brown sugar and treacle; however, the artificial sweetener present in the nose drops away. Additionally, the vinous quality present in the nose is also present in the flavor profile. Moutfeel is medium in body with a pleasant, even carbonation, a light oily texture and some acidity. Overall, not a bad RIS, but it doesn't really come together fully for me.

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Photo of Contra
3.95/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Strong espresso & dark chocolate flavor. A lot of the bitterness that comes along with those flavors are present, but it compliments the beer well. The beer reflects a nice ruby color along with the darkness that comes with a Russian Imperial Stout. Only complaint is that the alcohol isn't masked too well, which, in this case, effects the mouthfeel more than the taste. Overall, excellent, although certainly not perfect. Recommended!

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Photo of PicoPapa
3.51/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle. 2012 Vintage. Pours a black color with a thin ring of light brown head. Minimal lacing. Aroma is sweet with some chocolate, earth, roasted malts and hints of vanilla. The flavor is sweet chocolate, dark fruits and malts with a bitter dark chocolate finish. Earthy with a bit of an artificial sweetener taste. Nice alcohol presence. Mouthfeel is thin. Overall, not too bad and not too good. Might be tempted to buy it again.

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Photo of CloudStrife
3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a snifter. 2012 on the label.

A: Pours a dark brown black with a 1.5 finger khaki head that takes a few minutes to dissipate. Leaves some nice lacing on the sides of the glass.

S: Sort of an off malt aroma, dark fruits with a bit of spicy or sourness.

T: Strong with dark fruits and a big molasses taste.

M: Thick bodied with sort of a sticky mouthfeel. Low carbonation.

Overall unhappy with this brew, did not realize the brewery upon purchase. Overly sweet and fake.

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Photo of Flounder57
3.84/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz glass was poured into a nonic glass.

Appearance: This beer poured a one finger head that reduced and left some nice lacing on the glass. It is a pitch black color with no clarity or bubbles coming up the glass.

Smell: roster coffee, chocolate, boozy alcohol, burnt molasses, some vanilla, and sweetness.

Taste: Same as above with some lingering bitterness, bready notes, and dark fruits

Mouthfeel: smooth, full bodied, warm boozy alcohol, medium carbonation, and a little chewy.

Overall: Pretty solid RIS here folks. I will have to look for more of this in the future.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.27/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Poured from a bottle into a snifter, the beer is a dark, slick, brown-to-black coloring with a thin, filmy ring of brown bubbling around the surface. Aromas of molasses, vanilla, a touch of earthiness, and an overbearing sugary sweetness. Flavors are muddled on a rich, creamy body. Fruity sweet overtones, with hints of banana blending along the dark molasses and earthy tones. Some bitter coffee and hints of booze create a slightly limp backbone. The body is great, but unfortunately the flavors don't match up to it. Slightly bitter, boozey finish, but not overpowering or cloying.

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Photo of gabedivision
3.67/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

poured from a 12 ounce bottle to a SA Impreial Snifter glass

A- black as night, 1/2 finger dark beige head

S- Light sugary chocolate, much like tootsie roll, milk chocolate, hints of vanilla faint grassy hop bittering

T- Bitter chocolate, chocolate syrup, lots of sugar, brown sugar, buttery, slight wet carboard, alcohol shines through every aspect of the sip.

M- Full bodied, smooth, creamy, finishes bitter.

O- Not the best RIS ive ever had, though, not the worst. Flavors just seem a tad off in some sips. All in all i wouldnt kick it out of bed

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Photo of Flightoficarus
3.3/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a thick black, with a slight, sepia head. Retention is short-lived. Lacing is thin.

S - Smell is heavily of rich caramel and roasted coffee.

T - Taste is of thick, creamy malts. Lots of sweet caramel notes, with some submissive roasted coffee and chocolate flavors making their way in for some balance. Leaves a slight, lingering bitterness. Alcohol is present, but concealed enough.

M - Full bodied, and light carbonation, with a thick, creamy feel overall.

O - Overall, The heavy emphasis on the caramel sweetness without a lot else going on makes it a bit too one-dimensional for me. Not a bad beer, just not my favorite example of a RIS.

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Photo of riversider76
4.12/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark brown with a thin tan head. Excellent retention, and a decent lace. Aroma is of Alchol, cherry, molasses and chocolate. Body is thick with little carbonation. Taste is of sweet cherry, roasted coffee comes through as well. Very complex. Not a typical Russian Imperial Stout, but great tasting. Highly recommend a try.

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Photo of Rin
3.52/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

I received this bottle to sample from my local distributor since I've yet to cave and carry any of Leinenkugel's "craft" series in my shop. I will say that most of the enjoyment I received from this beer came from the fact that I was pleasantly surprised it didn't murder my taste buds and leave me condemning the brewery to the pits of hell.

A: This is a beautiful looking beer. Pours very dark with a creamy brown head and long lasting lacing.

S: I was confused here. The nose reminded me more of a barleywine than a Russian Imperial Stout. Big toffee notes and red berries, little roast to speak of.

T: Again, very confusing for the style. SWEET, very sweet! Not altogether unpleasant but my mouth had no idea what was happening. Toffee and molasses up front followed by hints of cherry and roast in the middle. The finish was roasted malt, wood chips, and ash....and strangely lacking any coffee prevalence whatsoever, once again really bizarre for the style. Also not necessarily dry, but the favors really didn't linger at all. Well masked alcohol.

M: Very creamy at first, but fades away very quickly. Thankfully, this brew was full bodied enough to help battle the odd char taste in the finish.

O: Not horrible, but not great. I can't say I would ever commit to buying a 4 pack of this, but I would be open to trying it again if offered. Leinenkugel's certainly went all out attempting this very ambitious style and may have fallen short, but I could definitely see this brew having an audience among the craft crowd a lot more than anything else they've ever come up with.

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Photo of beer4colin
2.97/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Full disclosure:

I have never had a Leinenkgel that I have enjoyed. But, I consider myself very open minded in reviewing.m past experiences doesn't affect anything with me..if I beer is good or bad I say it.

I fully under stand why mainstream brewers want to tap into the "craft" or "niche" maker. Profits are not the driver, but street cred is.

An Imperial Russian is a VERY ambitious brew. And not one to be taken lightly.

That said, here is Big Eddy....this beer pours a beauty, dark with a big rich dark brown 2 finger head when poured into a Pinter.

The Magog ends at the appearance. Taste is very contrived. Maybe it is a function of volume brewed but all I taste is charred wood! Stouts should be a nice roasted malt, peat or similar backbone.

This tastes like burnt wood chips thrown in the mash.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
4.32/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle into a snifter

Appearance – Pours a black colored brew with a one finger light brown head. The head fades relatively quickly to leave a nice level of lacing. Upon swirling the glass the thickness of the brew can be seen with it clinging to the sides of the glass and slowly receding down to the base of the brew.

Smell- The aroma is heavy of chocolate and roasted malt with a presence of a bourbon like smell. A light coffee and molasses as well as a light licorice and dark fruit smell join the others and make for a rather nice roasty and dark aroma.

Taste – The taste begins very smooth with a roasted malt and coffee heavy flavor. Sweeter flavors of dark fruits and molasses soon come to the tongue with the smoothness losing ground to a more turbid and carbonated taste. Flavors of chocolate then start entering onto the tongue. A very light alcohol flavor with hints of bourbon hit the taste buds more toward the end. The chocolate and coffee flavors grow stronger and get more intense at the end and when combined with the more subtle sweet flavors produce a very smooth and roasted dark flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – This is one fantastic feel. As discussed above, it begins on the very creamy and smooth side with a very light carbonation felt on the tongue. As the brew sits in the mouth, tiny carbonation bubbles seem to make their presence known, slightly taking down the creaminess, but providing a great level of effervesce to compliment the sweet and bring in greater complexity to the feel. The end leaves a rather thick and lightly carbonated feel to linger on the tongue. This is actually one of the greatest feeling stouts I have ever had - It’s complex yet complimenting and balanced.

Overall – Now I know that most of you automatically label this beer as sub-par as it comes from a more macro brewery, but I say this, give it an “honest and unbiased” chance. It doesn’t have the best flavor profile, although it is goo with a nice roasty and dark flavor with a good level of sweetness. The real great thing of this beer is its feel and smell. Its feel absolutely phenomenal with the smell being quite nice. Look past your preconceived notions and give this beer a honest go.

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

Pours a three-finger khaki head that takes a while to fade to a ring leaving some lace. Totally black color, no highlights. Medium carbonation and heavy bodied. Molasses chocolate nose. Flavor is same molasses, chocolate and hints of dark fruit. $2.70 for a 12oz bottle from a Tully’s Beer & Wine Wells, ME.

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

On tap at Kickbacks in Jax. Poured into a snifter. Light tudor brown head, almost black body, low to moderate retention, mostly clear lacing. Aroma includes roasted malt, some malty sweetness, some coffee, touch of vanilla with a hint of alcohol. Taste has some hop bitterness, roasty with chocolate notes and toffee, slight alcohol note on tasting. Overall, a fairly decent imperial stout with no off flavors, just maybe not too memorable.

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Photo of puboflyons
4.11/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle stamped 32513-B21010824. Sampled on December 22, 2012.

The pour is extremely dark. It is basically black with a small silky beige head that fizzles after a few moments and becomes a ring.

On the nose there are some roasty dark malts, coffee, and dark fruit like plum or prune. There is also a buttery kind of thing going on.

The body is bold but in general it is also creamy.

Similar to the aroma there is a roasted dark malt taste but the fruit is not quite as noticeable. The moderate bitterness lingers a bit at the end. Quite good I will admit but there are better Impy Russian Stouts out there.

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Photo of Duff27
4.09/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Short light char colored head on a near black body. Collar throughout. Thin alcohol legs.

Sweetness. Dark chocolate syrup. Molasses and raisins. Very distinct.

Compliments the aroma well. Cocoa maltiness with a touch of roast. Would guess at 9%abv

Medium to medium thick mouthfeel. Low end of carbonation.

Very drinkable impy stout from MillerCoors. The nose smells like a Dark Lord Jr. to me. Good for price point. Would have again.

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Photo of SawDog505
4.23/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Lost Abbey tulip glass, bottled in 2012. Pours a slick black, with a two inch dark tan head, that leaves a nice collar of lace on the sides. Smell is aggressive dark chocolate, roasted coffee, some licorice, dark fruit, and a hint of smoke. Taste is very assertive, lots of expresso, with hints of the other flavors from the nose. Body is on the larger side, perfect amount of life, a little dry, and very drinkable. This is very solid, reminds me of Ten Fidy and $5 less expensive. I am impressed and surprised.

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Photo of tigg924
4.3/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: black in color, minimal head, opaque, minimal carbonation

Smell: roasted malt, dark chocolate, and nut

Taste: dark chocolate, roasted malt, wood--maybe cedar, light caramel, and vanilla at the end

Mouthfeel: heavy bodied, low carbonation,chewy, sweet with roasty bitterness

Overall: Very complex. Sweeter than most and way too drinkable for the abv. Almost drinks like a good Valentine's day cordial. If you typically like Leinie's you will like this. If you do not, I suspect you will not enjoy this as much.

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Big Eddy Russian Imperial Stout from Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 474 ratings.