1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Ivan The Terrible Imperial Stout - Big Sky Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Ivan The Terrible Imperial StoutIvan The Terrible Imperial Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

613 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 613
Reviews: 259
rAvg: 4.28
pDev: 10.51%
Wants: 768
Gots: 196 | FT: 13
Brewed by:
Big Sky Brewing Company visit their website
Montana, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
2006 - 8.75% (draft only)
2007 - 8.75% (500ml flip top bottles ~ very limited)
2008 - 9.5% (750ml - capped - 1152 bottles)
2009 - 10% (750ml cork and cage)
2010 - 10% (750ml - cork and cage)
2011 - not brewed
2012 - 12.2% (750ml cork and cage)
2013 - 13.8%

65 IBU

(Beer added by: Bitterbill on 11-10-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 613 | Reviews: 259 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of josephwa
josephwa

Minnesota

3.5/5  rDev -18.2%

12-02-2012 16:23:50 | More by josephwa
Photo of GoldenJet
GoldenJet

Minnesota

3.5/5  rDev -18.2%

10-11-2012 19:18:21 | More by GoldenJet
Photo of Soto
Soto

North Carolina

3.5/5  rDev -18.2%

08-22-2014 03:39:08 | More by Soto
Photo of TheRuss9585
TheRuss9585

Vermont

3.5/5  rDev -18.2%

05-23-2013 14:32:11 | More by TheRuss9585
Photo of KAF
KAF

Iowa

3.5/5  rDev -18.2%

01-25-2012 22:01:07 | More by KAF
Photo of caskstrength
caskstrength

Minnesota

3.68/5  rDev -14%

2010 750ml corked and caged.

Lots of light brown head, more than enough carbonation. Dark beer, looks like a stout. (which, as a stout, it should). Some brown on the edges in the light. More bubbly than I'd like.

Roasted smells; chocolate, brown sugar, subtle coffee. Some alcohol, sharper than I'd like. not a ton of bourbon or oak, but it's there. Some darker fruits show up too. It's not a very intense smelling beer, but what you get is pretty complex, a lot going on and hard to pin down.

Tastes don't quite match the complexity of the aroma. Sweet milk chocolate with mild roasted espresso, alcohol there too, maybe too much. some oak and bourbon, but as a compliment and not a dominant flavor. ("needed more time in the barrel" is becoming a common theme in these caskstrength reviews) Fairly typical, nothing that stands out in the bourbon barrel stout crowd.

Thinner on the mouthfeel, but it's thick enough. Those who like chewy stouts should look elsewhere.

Won't be looking for more, but a solid offering.

01-25-2011 17:22:59 | More by caskstrength
Photo of hellbilly
hellbilly

Arizona

3.68/5  rDev -14%

bottle # 495/1152...

fairly black pour... walnut stained brown black color with a large spongy orange tinted light brown head. moderate trails of lace.

the aroma is surprisingly quite floral... mixed in are notes of sour fruit possibly cherries?, roast, brown sugar, chocolate and mellow bourbon spiciness and woody vanilla.

i pick up a lot of tartness on the palate (weird? maybe from the grain?). it also has a dusty oatmeal quality which combines with the aroma characteristics... there's a bit of ash, nuttiness and smokiness before a spicy vaporous finish. it's pretty well balanced and nothing really wants to jump out. the aftertaste is of mediocre bourbon. light to medium body with a strange gritty texture. it is however, not sticky and is creamy/ smooth enough to make enjoyable.

it's good and certainly much better when warm. but, there isn't anything about it to make it memorable or stand out.
7/4/7/4/15/3.7

12-16-2008 04:22:48 | More by hellbilly
Photo of cpetrone84
cpetrone84

Pennsylvania

3.7/5  rDev -13.6%

Had again, drank the 09.

pour has very little head, a few bubble tan in color, jet black beer. The nose is rich, dark chocolate, light olive, notes of roast, and light sweetness in back. The taste is a bit sweeter, similar to Adam but sweeter, light roast and vanilla note, nice rich chocolate, smooth body, a bit thin, decent carbonation especially for 3 years old.
***
Shared at our recent tasting, either an 06 or 07, 8.75% ABV with an 1152 bottle count.

A-pours a jet black liquid with a nice dense tan head with good retention.

S-strong notes of oak and vanilla up front, anise comes in behind, lightly roasted malts, dark rich chocolate in the back.

T-the oak and vanilla are right up front, notes of bourbon behind. light anise, lots of roasted malts and rich decatant dark chocolate. the back has a hint of sweetness, dark fruits of plums and cherries. there is some heat throughout and in the back but very light and just let you know its a big beer.

M-good full body with lots of carbonation still and a good crisp finish. smooth and velvety on the palate with a good creamy feel.

D-this is a delicious RIS with a good complexity. the oak is done well, present but not dominant. tons of roasted malty goodness with a nice light sweetness in the back. great feel and good carb, not too heavy but definitely big.

06-18-2012 16:53:16 | More by cpetrone84
Photo of seeswo
seeswo

Ohio

3.7/5  rDev -13.6%

Poured into a Bruery snifter. I'll comment on the appearance at the end. Smell is dark fruit, roasted malts, vanilla, oak, and a touch of coffee/chocolate. The flavor is the big combination of the dark fruit, bourbon and the roasted flavor of the malts and coffee. Lesser so is the specific vanilla and oak. The nose and the flavor come together pretty well to make a quite nice -bal imperial stout. The mouthfeel and appearance will be bundled together in failure. Slurping its way out of the bottle was something that could be best described as a beer oyster, plopping its way into the glass. The shape and texture were of an oyster, with a brownish color. After snagging and poking this thing, I decided to give it a taste - sugarless chocolate and bland cocoa, basically. It was really gross to see this thing plop into a glass and it was relieving to find out that it was an ingredient in the beer and not something else. Either way, it is impossible to positively rank the mouthfeel and appearance given the cocoa oyster we received.

05-24-2011 14:07:23 | More by seeswo
Photo of BieresDesMoines
BieresDesMoines

Iowa

3.7/5  rDev -13.6%

Pours black with a small light head that leaves some lace. The aroma is cocoa and raw roasted grain with some apple and a bit of bourbon. The flavor is roasty and plenty bitter with some dark fruit and woody tones. The bourbon and vanilla are well featured but not overdone, which makes this a pretty nice version of a bourboned RIS.

03-23-2011 16:46:45 | More by BieresDesMoines
Photo of Rhettroactive
Rhettroactive

District of Columbia

3.73/5  rDev -12.9%

From 750mL bottle to snifter on 2/4/12
*From notes

-- Thanks, Bill --

*I think we determined this was a 2008 vintage, bottle 636 of 1152

A: Not the best looking beer I've ever poured. Hearty brownish, and on a standard pour, I get a meager head that's not even .25 fingers. No lacing and the tiniest damn collar you've ever seen.

S: Chocolate chip cookies, raw cocoa and a touch of charred wood.

T: Solid. Packed from jowel to jowel with warm dark chocolate, mature bourbon, vanilla and a touch of grassiness.

M: Jesus is this thin. It's lacking carbonation in the worst way. In fact it's so thin that it negatively affects the flavor profile, therefore kncoking it down a peg. This is hands down the low point of a fine beer.

O: I don't know what happened with the feel of this beer, but it really took away from the entirety of the experience. If you can look past it's flaws, Ivan's an above average BA RIS. Here's to hoping that the later vintages have better quality control and balance.

02-18-2012 21:47:59 | More by Rhettroactive
Photo of Schlais
Schlais

Minnesota

3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

06-12-2013 01:09:20 | More by Schlais
Photo of Glibber
Glibber

Idaho

3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

07-11-2013 04:13:56 | More by Glibber
Photo of CaptainNomihodai
CaptainNomihodai

Illinois

3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

02-28-2013 06:09:30 | More by CaptainNomihodai
Photo of Hophead717
Hophead717

Massachusetts

3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

10-26-2013 00:23:57 | More by Hophead717
Photo of Smurf2055
Smurf2055

Washington

3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

08-07-2013 05:53:16 | More by Smurf2055
Photo of will1256
will1256

Minnesota

3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

03-08-2013 05:07:00 | More by will1256
Photo of SocalKicks
SocalKicks

California

3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

10-12-2013 02:47:24 | More by SocalKicks
Photo of neckbeered
neckbeered

Montana

3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

06-09-2013 15:48:35 | More by neckbeered
Photo of AlexFields
AlexFields

Tennessee

3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

03-02-2013 02:39:59 | More by AlexFields
Photo of belgbeerdrinker
belgbeerdrinker

Colorado

3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

10-12-2013 02:57:07 | More by belgbeerdrinker
Photo of vissai
vissai

California

3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

02-04-2014 00:30:07 | More by vissai
Photo of JellyJacket
JellyJacket

Illinois

3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

06-05-2014 20:15:36 | More by JellyJacket
Photo of duceswild
duceswild

Maryland

3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

02-19-2013 01:02:02 | More by duceswild
Photo of TheBeerTruck
TheBeerTruck

Michigan

3.75/5  rDev -12.4%

06-18-2012 20:33:04 | More by TheBeerTruck
Ivan The Terrible Imperial Stout from Big Sky Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 613 ratings.