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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

605 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 605
Reviews: 259
rAvg: 4.28
pDev: 10.51%
Wants: 768
Gots: 196 | FT: 11
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
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Ratings: 605 | Reviews: 259 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of afksports
afksports

New York

4.22/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2010 Vintage. Shared with my friends Nikolai, Sergei, and Svetlana. One more complex oak bourbon-barrel aged beer in the coffers of what I've tried. Another one knocked off the Top100. This one is from Big Sky in Montana, and took some doing to get. But after I called on my Russian friends, everyone seemed to want to help me just a bit more. Faaantastic.

The appearance... this beer is sexy as hell. Beautiful head that bubbles on the initial popping of the cork. Deep and rich and dark, vicious and viscous, Ivan has a full finger or more of head on a tiny pour into my glass and sustains thorough lacing that clings all over. The smell is oak, bourbon, booze, and hints of dark fruits, hops, and mean caramel roasty malts. It tastes primarily of bourbon up front, but has a hop forward character at the lips. As it goes through the bourbon presents itself more strongly, and despite the sweetness, booze heat finishes the taste. Minus the heat, this might be a Storm King Stout type of feel. But the heat is good for some, like my friend Nikolai who noted that in Mother Russia this beer would keep the cold Siberian winters warm.

Its thick and full bodied, with tons of carbonation. Best stored standing up, it seems like there's some goopy sediment that I mistakenly got in the brew because I had it on its side like a dumbass. Discounting for my error, this is a drinkable brew for the folks that are in to 10% alcohol by volume Bourbony beers. Sergei was giving me high fives and even called his friend Marshal Zhukov to tell him about it.

As for me, I don't plan on a St. Petersburg visit anytime soon, and I probably won't see Montana too soon either. So I'll take it as a lukewarm appreciation. I'm a little over bourbon-barrel aging, and I'd love to keep this one to cellar it and see how it develops. Until then, give me a good ol' brown anytime.

But don't let the Russians see this. I told them it was exceptional (and truthfully, it kind of is...)

Serving type: bottle

05-29-2011 03:55:29 | More by afksports
Photo of KickInTheChalice
KickInTheChalice

Illinois

4.22/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2010 release. Bottle 2569/3800. 750 mL bottle poured into a tulip. Thanks to readbaron for sharing this.

Appearance: This pours almost black, with walnut brown edges. Thick and viscous, with a small mocha head that recedes

Smell: Bourbon, raisins, and figs, roasted malt, and a little bit of toffee, molasses, and peat.

Taste: The malt flavor is definitely heavy here, with a surprisingly strong and noticeable peat flavor. Bourbon soaked raisins and figs combine with smooth toffee to provide a nice sweetness. A little bit of smoke and tobacco step in on the back end.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied, with medium carbonation. A sticky residue is left after each sip, and it has a sort of buttery smoothness to it.

Drinkability: A very enjoyable beer, it is a shame this is only released in small quantities.

Serving type: bottle

03-11-2011 18:26:56 | More by KickInTheChalice
Photo of claspada
claspada

New Jersey

4.24/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2009 Limited edition; Bottle 780 of 3000. Courtesy of hoppymcgee, a gentleman and a scholar.

Man that cork was really in there. Pours a Coca Cola dark dark brown with no visible light what so ever. A small brown inch of head that slowly recedes leaving thick soapy lacing.

Aromas begin with dark bitter bakers cocoa and some lesser milk cocoa chocolate bar. After the initial cacao smells I get the barrel; vanilla, bourbon, light nuttiness and generic wood. Roasted, mildly charred dark malts intermingle with the barrel and some lesser sweet chocolate/dark fruit.

The tastes explode with so much flavor I am at a loss for words initially. First I get loads of dark chocolate, then vanilla and light bourbon, then some dark dark dried fruit (prunes/raisins), then some sweeter milk chocolate and the light oak rounds out the flavor profile. Barrel flavors become more predominant as it warms as expected. No boozy or alcohol flavors at all. Barrel flavors perfectly balance the viscous stout flavors. The base stout isn't too roasty or bitter as some Russian Imperial Stouts can tend to be.

The mouthfeel is medium to heavy bodied with medium to low carbonation. Surprisingly drinkable with the above mouthfeel characteristics, the beer drinks rather light (for the style); I am attributing that to this being only (only...) 10%ABV compared to the higher ABV-ed monsters that exist today.

Overall, this is definitely top 5 Stouts/Barrel-aged stouts I have ever had. This beer is once again a winner for me because it fits the criteria that I love which is balance. The barrel doesn't overpower but is definitely still a strong presence. The drinkability is off the charts in that I could finish the whole 750ml if I wanted/had to. Highly recommended and worth seeking out.

Serving type: bottle

12-03-2011 00:50:32 | More by claspada
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2010 edition,bottle #945 of 3800
10%ABvV.

Poured into an imperial nonic near jet black,you had to hold it up to bright light to get a little ruddy hue at the bottom of the glass to get thru the pitch blackness.Toasted bourbon barrel hits upfront in the nose than some vanilla and alcohol dipped dark fruit,the roast is a bit subdued but its rich in the nose.Toasty with big bourbon notes on the palate but it doesnt overpower,lingering dark fruit and dark roast coffee does show thru.A little sharp in the mouthfeel,this beer would be off the charts with a fuller feel.A really good if not great imperial stout,so close...so close.

Serving type: bottle

05-16-2011 22:45:53 | More by oberon
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DanGeo

Michigan

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

12-12-2013 19:08:15 | More by DanGeo
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abeerdude

California

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

08-14-2012 20:23:24 | More by abeerdude
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stereosforgeeks

Virginia

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

01-30-2014 15:57:05 | More by stereosforgeeks
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StoutItOutLoud

Illinois

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

03-23-2014 15:11:44 | More by StoutItOutLoud
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jmccraney

Washington

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

05-10-2014 01:08:35 | More by jmccraney
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blindpiggie

Colorado

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

10-17-2013 20:16:31 | More by blindpiggie
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GRG1313

California

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

02-11-2013 02:18:05 | More by GRG1313
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sammo

Kansas

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

06-25-2012 16:52:51 | More by sammo
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SpdKilz

Illinois

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

05-22-2013 13:28:52 | More by SpdKilz
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CHILLINDYLAN

Washington

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

05-14-2014 17:48:17 | More by CHILLINDYLAN
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bonez05404

Pennsylvania

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

12-29-2013 16:34:15 | More by bonez05404
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RMoeNay

Connecticut

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

01-05-2014 03:00:45 | More by RMoeNay
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jaydoc

Kansas

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

08-20-2013 04:20:33 | More by jaydoc
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DeekNayvuz

Montana

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

02-23-2013 22:31:31 | More by DeekNayvuz
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jegross2

Illinois

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

05-02-2013 04:26:31 | More by jegross2
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tommy5

Michigan

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

04-15-2014 20:26:26 | More by tommy5
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Eighty

Washington

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

12-05-2013 18:22:37 | More by Eighty
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BColton1

Rhode Island

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

01-20-2014 19:19:03 | More by BColton1
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badboy7113

Florida

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

11-28-2013 15:15:54 | More by badboy7113
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ejyoung

Arizona

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

01-22-2013 19:47:04 | More by ejyoung
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KevSal

California

4.25/5  rDev -0.7%

12-28-2012 05:48:13 | More by KevSal
Ivan The Terrible Imperial Stout from Big Sky Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 605 ratings.