Whole Hog Russian Imperial Stout - Stevens Point Brewery

Not Rated.
Whole Hog Russian Imperial StoutWhole Hog Russian Imperial Stout

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BA SCORE
79
okay

149 Ratings
THE BROS
74
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 149
Reviews: 69
rAvg: 3.45
pDev: 14.78%
Wants: 0
Gots: 14 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Stevens Point Brewery visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  8.60% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: cokes on 02-19-2010

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 149 | Reviews: 69
Photo of FernMaster
1.78/5  rDev -48.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint.

Lucky, this bottle was provided to me by a friend and I didn't pay for it. He laughed and told me it tasted like Band-aids, I found this crazy so I had to try Band-aid beer. He's not far off. Yuck. Here goes....

The color isn't that bad, but there's very minimal head and what's there resides very quickly. There's a decent lacing around the glass, but actually the word "decent" should have been "minute." The smell is very very strange. The nose is this offensive rubbery, dark fruit scent, like it's raisins, plums and too much toffee. My thoughts going into this was that hopefully the taste didn't follow the nose, it didn't, it was actually worse. He was freaking right, it tastes like band-aids. Yuck. There's way, way too much toffee and way, way too much raisins and plum flavor. Yuck. God I just drank it again to get a more accurate description, just don't drink it. That's the best I can get. Just don't.

If you're thinking of drinking this beer, stop it. Walk away and buy something good. This is not good.

Photo of homebrew311
2.09/5  rDev -39.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

Saw this new RIS at the store at a reasonable price, had to try it.

A: Pours an extremely dark brown with a little bit of light passage when the glass is held to a lamp. There is about a 1 finger creamy looking head with decent retention and some lacing.

S: I am not picking up a whole lot on the nose... some deep roasted grains and some ethyl alcohol. Also picking up some spicy hops in the background. Again, everything is pretty subdued.

T: the front starts out with nice sweet notes of molasses and dark chocolate, but that is where it all goes down hill. This flavor fades quickly and turns into a solvent like alcohol presence along with some metallic notes. The finish is unpleasant and it leaves a less than desirable flavor in the mouth.

MF: thin body,medium to high carbonation, a bit of a creamy texture as it warms

D: this beer started out promising but ended up being a bit of a mess. The alcohol is way too prevalent and does not balance with the malt profile at all. Something about this brew lacks robustness and just ultimately falls short. I couldn't finish this as the after taste left and unpleasant burn on the palate.

Photo of boudreaux
2.57/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A: pours dark reddish-black; a lighter, off-white head

S: dark fruit and roasted malt hit the nose; alcoholic as well

T: plenty of estery fruit, but not enough thick, roasted malt; a hint of coffee and roast, but overall lacking

M: weak... very light and watery

D: shouldn't be this drinkable for the style; this beer is a work in progress, at best

As the color and aroma already indicate, this beer lacks the substance to be considered truly imperial in nature. There's plenty of estery fruit, but none of the big, thick flavors like coffee and chocolate so characteristic of Russian Imperial Stouts. The mouthfeel is weak and the whole thing goes down like a wet Fourth of July. This beer would be better off advertised as an imperial brown ale.

Photo of russpowell
2.63/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours an effervescent mahogany with a finger of mocha colored head. Average head retention & lacing

S: Dark fruit & weird juicy fruit scents

T: Carob, dark fruittyness, a touch of iron, oaky dryness, leafy hops & booze up front. Dryness, a somewhat annoying chocolate covered cherry taste as this warms, along with faint figgyness & more leafy hops as this warms, along with a faint hint of juicy fruit. Finishes dry with more carob & weird juicy fruit taste, verging on the edge of drain pour, maybe I should've had this cold???

MF: Slick, kind of watery fairly noticable/ prickly carbonation

Drinks okay, a half hearted attempt at the style IMO. My first IMP stout homebrew was so much better, even weaker than the imp pilsner & IPA. So many good/great RISs out there, sorry I wasted my time on this one

Photo of JPowell712
2.69/5  rDev -22%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I have to be honest, I expected a better product than this. The pour and look to the beer was about the best part. It looked nice and dark as an imperial stout should. The aroma was not very strong and smelled of sweet prunes. That's exactly what the taste also put forth... Prunes. I don't know why, but I caught a lot of sweet prunes and almost nothing more. The taste is rather boring. I did get the big warming character of a higher alcohol beer, but I just thought overall it lacked some of the much needed elements to be a good imperial stout.

Photo of NewGeneric
2.71/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Once again, thanks to dansteino for always having a great selection.
Poured into my Delerium tremens tulip.

A: Pours a deep, dark brown with about a finger and a half of milk chocolate head that fades relatively quickly.

S: Not a whole lot going on here. Some chocolate, with hints of roasted coffee and dark fruit. That's about it.

T: Similar to smell, though the fruit is more present than the chocolate. Roast, coffee are almost absent actually.

M: Bit of a bite up front, followed by some noticeable alcohol.

D: Could have more, but would prefer other options.

Photo of imagese
2.85/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Picked up a single at Cork & Bottle in New Orleans to try since it isn't avail in CA

A- dark auburn with a slight opaque brown at the edges. Poured a nice one finger, but it quickly faded and left no lacing.

S- powerful dark chocolate with a nice roasted quality on the initial pour. Lost a lot of strength, but was a still a nice smelling beer thru out the whole glass

T- nicely balanced, but for an RIS, it's missing that back end kick. Although, I'm really digging the cocoa taste that hangs in my mouth.

M- falls short here. A bit on the watery side, and carbonation seems a bit too low

D- goes down smooth. Drinks more like a strong English brown

This could be a good stepping stone from stouts to imperial stouts, but as far as hanging with the staple RIS selections, this one falls short.

Photo of cokes
2.96/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Dark magenta brown. Very much on the lighter side of the color spectrum. The head is a tall puff of mocha, gradually fading to reveal patches of lace.
Big time bubblegum nose, with additional notes of canned fruit cocktail in heavy syrup. This overly fruity nose seems a trademark of Point's Whole Hogs (and some of their regular offerings as well). Way in the background, there is a tiny whisper of cocoa. Some flare of Brandy-esque boozy heat as well, especially as it nears room temperature.
It carries more malt weight in the mouth, beginning with fudgey chocolate cake tones, and a small amount of roastedness, hinting at weak coffee. The fruit picks up midway, with pineapple, concord grapes, bananas, and dates. A small trickle of vanilla-tinged booziness creeps in. As does the bubblegum, shattering what was a perfectly quaint moment. The buublegum joins the lolling booziness to ride long into the finish. Hops offer little in the way of resistance.
It's moderate-full mouthfeel and low-mid carbonation are appropriate. If some of the overtly fruity characteristics were quelled, this would be respectable.

Photo of rhoadsrage
2.98/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

(Served in a bowtie glass)
A- This beer pours a jet black body with a thin cinnamon head that is soon gone before the first sip. There are big bubbles the pop up the side of the glass.

S- The deep toffee takes on some soy sauce qualities with a slight sweetness in the finish with a gentle graham hint coming through as it warm. There is a shampoo quality to the whole aroma that is a bit off.

T- The deep toffee flavor is mellow and a bit lagered clean with an artificial caramel flavor in the finish and some dark nougat flavors lingering.

M- The medium mouthfeel has a gentle fizz and no alcohol heat noticed.

O- This beer is light and smooth with a few qualities of a stout but then it has lots of odd and artificial flavors that are really off putting.

Photo of rrski198
3/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Jet black, small off white head, disapates quickly.

S: Black liquorice, coffee, chocolate. Nothing amazing

T: Sweet molasses, brown sugar, liquorice.

M: Weak carbonation, taste simply disappears quckly.

O: A sugary mess, not balanced (no hop presence). For the amount of R.I.S. on the market, I wouldn't purchase again.

Photo of jwinship83
3/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle picked up as a single because it was only $1.69. drank from my stone IRS snifter.

A- this one pours out a very dark brown colored body with a little bit of light passing through, there is a small khaki colored head on top. the head lasts for a few seconds before becoming no more than a crown. little to no lacing left behind.

S- the initial whiff brings forth mostly dark roasted malts. there is also a touch of chocolate and a little bit of alcohol. some earthy hops and coffee at the end.

T- the taste starts out with dark roasted malts. after that i get some sweet milk chocolate. a little bit of coffee and earthy hops at the end. definitely not the most complex of the style.

M- this is on the lighter side of full bodied with an acceptable level of carbonation. minor warming from the alcohol.

O- this is acceptably priced. not the greatest beer, but nothing offensive either. glad i tried it, i dont think ill be going back for more.

Photo of Stevedore
3/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

On tap. Served in a goblet 3/8/2015.

A- Dark black body, two finger brown head that retains quite nicely, leaving a thick collar that sticks around a while. No lacing.

S- A bit of bitter dark chocolate, cocoa, a little bit of malt sweetness, earthy bitterness. Not much else.

F- Mildly bitter charred malt, cocoa, milk chocolate sweetness, a bit of coffee, some dark chocolate. Altogether this is a very boring profile that doesn't seem to come together quite right here.

M- Medium bodied, good carbonation, decent bitterness, but I didn't find the flavour or depth to be interesting enough to finish the whole glass.

O- Meh.

Photo of Brent
3.03/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Shooting for this as a Russian Imperial Stout falls well short of the mark, unfortunately. Moderate roasted malt character, with some brown sugar and unsweetened cocoa in the background. A bit sweet-ish, and far too timid to rub elbows with other beers in this category. An average stout, somewhere between the English and American interpretations.

Photo of beer2day
3.03/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dark black pour with just a hint of red around the edges. 1-finger deep tan head. Faint lace.

Nose has a metallic twang to it. Getting light roast malt and weak sweet cherries. Needs more depth and strength.

Fairly light in body for an impy stout. More like a porter. Getting light chocolate, virtually no coffee, and a bit more of that metal that was in the nose. Light sweet finish, with a touch of roasted malts. Not very complex.

A bit disappointing for what looked like a nice glass of beer.

Photo of OWSLEY069
3.08/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours jet black with a light chocolate brown. In the aroma, a sweet oatmeal and cocoa. In the taste, a sweet chocolate roast, a nice sweetness and roast. A smooth and medium to bigger bodied mouthfeel, with a sweet and small chocolate like aftertaste. Not so much an imperial stout, more a chocolate stout.

Photo of DrDemento456
3.15/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Looks like your standard RIS maybe a touch lighter since I see a bit of hazy red at the base of all this darkness. Head is fairly sticky so it looks nice.

S - Mild roast, some chocolate, molasses, a touch of anise.

T - Kind of bland and lacking any complexity of the RIS style. Old coffee mild roasts, some chalky chocolate, and a touch of aged hops. Even the finish isn't sweet if it was I would give it some forgiveness. Reminds me of watery Guinness only double and not even close to the Foreign export stout.

M - Worst part its watery and thin which is not what I want in this style.

Overall I should have listened to the reviews it's a very average (at best) RIS.

Photo of jampics2
3.18/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a snifter. 

Whole hog is a dark black color in the glass with touches of brown.  Some tan head recedes to a ring.  Nice looking beer, but a bit lighter color than expected and just not top of the heap.     

The smell catches me off guard - notes of dark fruit are prominent and unexpected. There is some chocolate and molasses. Roasted malt with a touch of caramel sweetness and little hops.  Not a typical Russian Imperial Stout.     

The taste is also a bit off for the style.  Moderately bitter dark chocolate and some coffee acidity are present but also are sweet malt, a touch of dark fruit and raisin.  This is almost more of a quad-like stout or a dopplebock. Weird.     

Overall, the beer is creamy with nice carb but the body could be better. Don't get me wrong, this is a really flavorful beer and is above average drinkability.  But it seems like Stevens Point went for a RIS and only brought half the hog.  Not a premier example of the style, and not a beer I will be revisiting soon.  

Photo of Mora2000
3.21/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a black color with a brown head. The aroma has a lot of roasted malt in it, as well as some chocolate. The flavor is very similar. There are huge chocolate and roasted malt notes coming through, with some bitterness from the hops and a hint of grass coming through as well. I also get a little bit of pine from the hops. Thick mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

Photo of OldIronLungs
3.22/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Into a Duvel tulip with about a finger of quickly dissipating head turning into medium bubbled light cream lacing on top of a dark rich brown.

Nose of roasty malts , light chocolate and cereal grains.

A sip is watery and mildly carbonated, lightly roasty, sweet and warm with alcohol finishing with light chocolate and some hop bitterness.

The overall taste isn't striking in any way and for a RIS I need a good viscous body. It's certainly a take on the style, but not the direction I prefer. Honestly tastes more like a porter.

Photo of brentk56
3.22/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a fudge brown color with an inch of rocky, beige foam; while it fades rather quickly, it does leave a few dots and squiggles of lace behind

Smell: Chocolate and licorice

Taste: Chocolate, up front, with tart bitterness developing by mid-palate; not much flavor remains after the swallow other than a tart metallic character with a hint of chocolate underneath

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with moderate carbonation; somewhat aqueous

Overall: Rather unusual for the style as it doesn't have the fruity bold flavors or the full body that one would expect

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.23/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #38 (Mar 2010):

Two fingers is the least the head could do for us; good head retention as well. Dark, dark, dark ... what is expected. Sweet mocha, malty aroma, with some blackberries and nougat. Smooth, creamy, mild crispness all within a full-ish body. Very sweet palate, maltiness covers brown sugar, cookie dough, caramel and a tame roasted grain. The hops are lazily draped on the malt sweetness, and they soon disappear. Alcohol is there, just warming. Roasted flavors never peak, let alone try to throw down. Hints of butter, fruit and more caramel in the sweet finish.

A very mild and sweet version that's worth trying for a different perspective on the style, as most Imperial Stouts tend to be very roasty or hoppy, or both.

Photo of WesM63
3.23/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a Deschutes tulip

A: Pours a dark brown with a 1finger mocha head.

S: Smells sweet chocolate and some roasted malts.

T: Sweet cholocate up front roasted malts then small acholohol finish.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation.

O: Not a terrible RIS, but not fantastic either.

Photo of jbphoto88
3.25/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This stout pours like a flat root beer with the same soda brown and caramel edges. The head is a total let down with almost none to speak of. So far only the color is impressive.

The nose is mostly bread yeast and roasted grains. Far more grains show up after it warms a but but never as much as I'd hope.

Molasses right from the start in this flavor profile, thick, coating and sweet. There are some rich caramelized grains that go more toasted cereal then anything coffee or chocolate. Really nice dark flavors that's so far my favorite part of this beer.

The mouthfeel is thick and syrup like and almost over sweetened. Light carbonation supports that feel and leaves you with a coated mouth and a slick finish. Not the best stout in the world but a solid average one. Tasty in parts but lacking in others.

Photo of Ryan011235
3.26/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter on 4/11/12

Pours a medium-dark brown and settles pretty close to black. Sandy brown foam rises to just over two fingers before slowly dissipating. thin wisp of retention. A few globs of lace dot the glass.

Prune is heavy in the aroma, mixing with notes of molasses, burnt sugars and scorched chocolate. Perhaps a touch of tobacco and earth. While the aroma left me a bit apprehensive (I'm not a fan of sugar bombs) the flavor is more forgiving. Sure, there is some sweetness a la roasted chocolate, but there is also a pleasant coffee bitterness and earthen hop notion to keep the sugars in check. Heck, the finish is actually pretty dry. The body hovers around medium territory for a RIS, with a subtle, viscous feel underpinned by a granular notion. Carbonation is moderate and appropriately suited for the overall feel of the beer. Mild alcohol heat builds on the finish

Whole Hog isn't the most outstanding or memorable RIS. Regardless, it's not too shabby, especially considering it's rockin' an 8.6% abv.

Photo of WJVII
3.26/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint glass this brew was really inviting with an oil black color, a 1 finger chocolate head that left really nice lacing on the glass. The aroma is a little faint with some molasses, chocolate, and some slight burnt malt. The taste fails to go with the appearance of this brew. There is almost a sourness to the burnt caramel taste. The body is a little thin and a little more carbonation might help the flavor pop a little more. I have been happy with the recently new offerings from the SP brewery but this one misses the mark.

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Whole Hog Russian Imperial Stout from Stevens Point Brewery
79 out of 100 based on 149 ratings.