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Ryan Sullivan's Imperial Stout - Moylan's Brewery

Not Rated.
Ryan Sullivan's Imperial StoutRyan Sullivan's Imperial Stout

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

425 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 425
Reviews: 329
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 12.95%
Wants: 18
Gots: 12 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Moylan's Brewery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 05-16-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 425 | Reviews: 329 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of beersarang


3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Let me just say that this is a more accesible Imperial Stout. If you have tried stone's imperial russian, then this is about half the intensity.

Pours a black, with decent head retention.

Sweet coffee aromas and heavily roasted grain. Alcohol and some fruit.

Malt sweetness is fairly one dimensional, as is the roasted character. Fruit interplays with a moderate bitterness. Finishes slightly alcoholic.

Not as full bodied as I would have wished for the style.

A well made beer overall but nothing magical. Goes down pretty easily, compared to other Imperial Stouts.

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2005 22:38:01 | More by beersarang
Photo of jonnylieberman


3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours from a bomber into a pint glass. Should have poured it into a snifter. Black + black with a tiny amount of Ruby shining through if you hold it up to the light. Light brown head is full and fades slowly.

Smells like: Malt with coffee. Great chocolate notes. Pretty impressive. Slight about of alcohol, which at 10% is well masked.

Taste: Got enough Roasted Barley in there? Yikes! I'm getting cold coffee grounds as the dominant flavor. A little caramel as well. Diacetyl is present, but somehow it works to offset the shock of the bitter roast. The beer is also bitter from hops. A complex, BIG taste, but not really elegant or refined in any way. This also tastes like a low alcohol sweet stout. I find it very difficult to believe that this beer is 10%. Despite the fireworks in my mouth, this stuff goes down easy.

Mouthfeel: Thick and brite -- lots of minerals are present. Not bad. Good carbonation.

Overall: I'd like to age this one for a year and then try it. Remarkably easy to drink, but just not joyful like an Imperial Stout should be. Fine, but don't go out of your way for it.

Serving type: bottle

12-10-2005 07:19:07 | More by jonnylieberman
Photo of OldSock

District of Columbia

3.33/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Appearance – 22 oz bottle given to me as a bonus in a trade from Gueuzedude. Beautiful creamy, mocha, reverse-cascading head that lasts for a long time. The beer itself is completely black. This is what a stout should look like.

Smell – Rich chocolate and coffee smell with some toasted grain and mild alcohol. There is also some sweetness in the nose, maybe lactose…

Taste – Bitter dark chocolate is the first thing that comes to mind. There is a hint of dark fruit. This is actually pretty laid back for a big stout. Not much hop presence, a bit odd for a RIS.

Mouthfeel – Full mouthfeel with medium low carbonation, smooth.

Drinkability and Notes – This is pretty drinkable for a big stout, but it has a pretty lackluster one-dimensional flavor. This is sort of a junior Imperial Stout, much higher in alcohol than a standard stout, but not in the league of the hugely alcoholic and complex American versions that are available. Still an enjoyable beer that you don’t have to fight with.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2005 00:15:38 | More by OldSock
Photo of budsboy


4.55/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rich, deep mahogany color with a big fluffy tan head that sticks around.

Very aromatic. Smells of roasted malt, coffee, and raisen or plum.

This hits me right in the kisser. Sweetness from the dark fruit flavors and a deep roasty sourness combines with a rich dark coffee flavor. Even more pronounced sourness as it warms. Dry bitter finish. Very good.

Smooth to a point, then a bit biting. Full but not as round as other Russian imperial stouts. Low carbonation.

Very nice beer. I could drink this stuff every day, but it really hits the spot on a cool fall day. I'll get more of this. Try some.

Serving type: bottle

10-30-2005 21:59:09 | More by budsboy
Photo of Padron4KM


3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22 oz bottle. Busy label but no freshness date found.

Dark brown in color, ruby on the edges. Coffee colored head.

Sheets of lace and alcohol coat the glass.

Aroma is sweet, dark fruits, chocolate, roasted malt.

Flavor is sweet, lactose, sugar, with some chocolate and bitter coffee. alcohol afterburn. High abv is not hidden well

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2005 06:30:23 | More by Padron4KM
Photo of RedwoodGeorge


4.4/5  rDev +14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The pour is by far the weakest part of this impressive brew; it's a deep brown just shy of black with a thin cocoa colored head. The foam dies off very quickly (no real surprise with a 10% ABV beer) and leaves very little lacing on the glass.

The nose is just shy of French roast coffee with cream and two sugars. There's a hint of alcohol sweetness and a touch of chocolate but it's primarily dark roasted malts.

The taste is a good mix of coffee and chocolate with coffee winning out. There are hints of molasses and only suggestions of dark dried fruits but the primary tastes are coffee, sweet malt and a very pleasant finish of vanilla.

Mouthfeel is incredible - this is a medium bodied brew but it's got all the roundness and softness of a heavier stout. I see no mention of Oatmeal anywhere but it's got that velvety, creamy feel going down. Only moderate bitterness and no oily residue on the palate.

I'm really liking this beer - the flavors aren't overdone, the high alcohol content isn't overpowering and the mouthfeel is incredible. This is a perfect desert drink.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2005 04:23:06 | More by RedwoodGeorge
Photo of grindcore666


4.33/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black with no sign of any other color, except for maybe deep deep brown. Creamy mocha foam. I couldn't get a big head out of this one, but it's forgivable since it was dense and nicely colored.

I smell deep mocha foremost, then some alcohol and some slight chocolate. Smells like an Irish carbomb, which is fantastic.

A generous hit of espresso in a THICK reservoir of rich chocolate and black coffee. Honestly, it's like a premade Irish carbomb, only with a nasally strong finish (an escape route for the overload of espresso, perhaps).

The ABV is apparent, but very tastefully embraced. I can only say good things about this one.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2005 02:52:23 | More by grindcore666
Photo of DogFood11


2.98/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

the appearance was decent ....I'm maybe a bit picky since I have stone imperial stout at my fingertips but without being a big hack fest I'd have to say this beer is average looking. Decent lacing and a rather dark head.

I just found the burnt taste to be dictated rather than crafted...almost like extracts were used (just tasted that way i'm don't in any way think its true)...there is even a citrus/cleansing taste in the middle of this BIG beer. Melted root beer popscicle in the backdrop. This leans on the burnt malts and leaves the hops behind, not much in the way of bitterness but somehow it avoids being too sweet.

Imperial stouts are really hard to mess up completely. Ranking it within the style its just OK. Its BIG its BOLD but comparitively its middle of the road. For the price? it gets better when compared price wise thats for sure as this is in the $4 dollar range. Nice.

Serving type: bottle

08-13-2005 05:40:24 | More by DogFood11
Photo of baiser


4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark mahogany body with ruby highlights. A dense, dark head. Not much retention. Aroma is full of roasted chocolate, coffee, plums and other dark fruits. Body is thick and smooth, mouthfeel is very slick. Heavy warming alcohol. Much sweetness in each sip and also some molasses. Needs a bit more hop character IMO. Very drinkable despite the ABV.

Serving type: on-tap

07-31-2005 19:54:17 | More by baiser
Photo of NeroFiddled


4.83/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Moylan's Ryan O'Sullivan's Imperial Stout pours a mainly black body beneath a creamy head of khaki colored foam that holds quite well and leaves solid sheets and rings of lace at the outset of the glass. Beneath the head, some mahogany highlights can be seen at the bottom of the glass; and tiny, natural (bottle conditioned) bubbles can be seen steadily rising.

The nose is bready; caramelish; nutty; roasty like dark and bittersweet chocolate; lightly fruity; and it has a delicate waft of alcohol as well.

In the mouth it's superbly creamy and smooth with a full body and very fine-bubbled, moderate carbonation.

The bready, caramelish, and nutty maltiness appears upfront; followed by a quick note of berry-like fruitiness; and then dark chocolate and spent espresso grounds as it crosses the middle. It's got a wide flavor, and it's rich, but it's not decadent. And there's a complexity to it, but all of the flavors are easily recognizable; and it never becomes muddled on the palate. Another splash of seared dark-skinned fruit appears just before the swallow, and chocolate and coffee appear in the finish along with some dull, leafy and floral hops and a spritz of alcohol. It lingers with a dull roastiness, some mild fruit, and even some dull, spruce-like hops.

This is a really well done and superbly malty (as all of the Moylan and Marin beers are) beer that has a lot of charm. It's unique in that it's supple and welcoming, with less aggressive character than most examples. All of the characteristics of the style are there, but it's just so much more accessible! It's one of my favorites with a brilliant drinkability!

Serving type: bottle

07-31-2005 15:01:15 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of mattcrill


4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear cola pour with some veins of carbonation clinging to the side of the snifter. Puffy cloud of a tan head forms.

Smell: Licorice, some vinous ester notes, dry bittering chocolate, and a nice whiff of some french roast coffee invade the nasal passages. A good aroma for the soul...

Taste: French roast coffee with cream, walnuts, bitter cocoa powder, and hints of anise all bounce off the palate. Hints of alcohol pop up here and there but quickly get beat down by the roasty goodness.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and creamy. Coats the palate and leaves the slightest hint of alcohol behind.

Drinkability: This one was a hit with me. The ABV would inhibit the drinkability some but this is a nice gem. Strongly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2005 19:00:44 | More by mattcrill
Photo of clvand0


4.3/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is part of a Moylan's tasting that I'm working on. Pours a dark brown color with a tall and fluffy head that has nice retention and leaves a lot of lacing on the glass. The aroma is full of malty goodness - chocolate, roasted malts, fruit. The flavor was much the same. Lots of thick, malty goodness. The chocolate really comes through on the finish. Well balanced and easy to drink. Definately doesn't seem like a 10% beer. Big body, good beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-04-2005 17:34:49 | More by clvand0
Photo of kmpitz2


4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a deep deep brown color with just the slightest of ruby hues that come through. The head is 2 fingers and falls to a finger. The nose is chocolate, alcohol and a bit of dark fruit. The flavor is nice and roasty. The finish is chocolatey. I'd like to see a touch of coffee and a more bitter finish. The feel is thick...big and full. I find this to be a good beer. The flavors are not quite what I want, but they are not bad...just lacking. A nice show here.

Serving type: bottle

04-04-2005 02:44:12 | More by kmpitz2
Photo of OStrungT


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

This beer pours a dark mohagany. The head is dark tan. It is thick and creamy. It fades somewhat slowly leaving thick laces. It smells quite malty. Also, it smells of roasted malts and coffee. It tastes very malts and chocolate like. There is a strong coffee flavor as well. It also has a slight molasses taste to it. The alcohol is apparent in the flavor. It is a very creamy and smooth beer. It is carbonated just right. It sits well on the palate. This beer is not a good session beer due to the high alcohol content. It is a very good beer, and definately worth a try, but not all night long. For the record, the laces are still sticking strong on the glass.

Serving type: bottle

03-06-2005 04:31:37 | More by OStrungT
Photo of Crosling


4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Dark Brown. A pleasant aroma of mainly malt (caramel, chocolate and coffee), subtle aromatic hops, and a hint of fruit, mainly raisins. Tastes like an Imperia Stout ought to taste. Big, rich, full malts take over providing notes of roasted and burnt grain, chocolate, coffee, caramel and burnt fruits. A note of sherry is noticable on the finish. Quite flavorful, but lacking a full body and texture.

Serving type: on-tap

11-11-2004 00:55:15 | More by Crosling
Photo of Gueuzedude


3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours with a dense rich frothy brown head when sufficiently roused. The prodigious head sits atop a beer that is black as a moonless midnight. The aroma is rich and inviting with rich notes of coffee, roasted malt, grain husks, port, roasted raisins and figs.

The taste is quite rich as well, I get notes of chocolate, espresso, roasted raisins, and a hint of sherry. It is not as sweet tasting as some examples, though in its hearty thick-bodied palate it does have some sweetness. The preponderance of dark malt serves as a nice foil to the malty sweetness such that it does not dominated this beer. This really has such a smooth creamy mouth feel to it. The finish of this beer is at first sweet, perhaps from some hop flavor, but then moves to a dry subtle astringency that is made up of hop bitterness and dark malt character.

This is a well crafted Imperial Stout, it really strikes a nice balance of malt flavors and bitterness. It definitely leans toward dark malt flavors but it is not so much that there is a lot of overwhelming burnt flavors and astringency. Like the Double IPA it seems to be lacking just a little something and it seems to fade a bit too much over time, but again I am really going to enjoy finishing this bottle off.

Serving type: bottle

09-10-2004 16:05:30 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of GCBrewingCo

North Carolina

4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The beer poured midnight black and thick with a slowly developing brown head that rose up and fell slowly to lace the glass.

The aroma was deep roastiness and coffee. There was a definite dark fruit presence and chocolate.

The flavor was chocolate and coffee with roastiness and that same dark fruitiness. Smooth and rich with a slight alcohol warming.

The finish was dry with coffee and dark fruit flavors lasting pleasantly long into the aftertaste. The body was full and creamy. A slight alcohol warming was present.

22 ounce bottle.

Serving type: bottle

08-29-2004 19:30:21 | More by GCBrewingCo
Photo of rkhaze


4.45/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours black with a small, dense and creamy tan head.
Deep earthy roasty aromas. Mainly malt and red fruit with some coffee and chocolate as well.
Taste is much more than the smell. Tangy sweet roasted/charred malt, dark coffee, rich chocolate and creamy raspberry. There was a citrusy hop presence that cut the rich flavors a bit. Finishes dry with hints of wood, smoke and licorice. Almost a bit too sweet.
Medium bodied with a rich, creamy and slightly oily mouthfeel.
The mouthfeel actually came across as a little light for the style, although that along with the nicely hidden alcohol, made for great drinkability.

Serving type: on-tap

07-04-2004 14:14:22 | More by rkhaze
Photo of winomark


3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep brown, almost black with a small, lingering light brown head. Sweet cocoa and mild coffee tones. Some black fruits noticable. Thick and chocolatey palate. Reminds me of a chocolate covered dark cherry. Rich and coating, with a slight tartness on the finish. A good brew, great with dessert or just sipping on. Look for this one.

Serving type: bottle

06-24-2004 14:28:58 | More by winomark
Photo of meathookjones


3.63/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz Bomber. The poured a very dark brown to black color with a thin brown head with minimal retention. Aroma is mainly of a roasted coffee and chocolate malt scent with not much else going on. Typical imperial stout taste here with dark chocolate flavors and roasted coffee and hops bringing up the rear. There is a nice bitter aftertaste but no alcohol to be found anywhere in the smell or taste. Pretty good mouthfeel but this one is a little thin. Overall a decent imperial stout that is worth a try if you come across it.

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2004 16:41:10 | More by meathookjones
Photo of PopeJonPaul


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

This was only the second beer I've had from Moylan's (Kilt Lifter was the other.)

This one was the color of tar, with a thin film of brown fizz on the top. Smelled like a burnt maple tree. Taste was great, like roasted syrup that had been filtered through a smoker and then fermented, with a tiny bit of chocolate malt. Quite sweet and malty, but still a light mouthfeel. Very drinkable, though the alcohol content will probably put you off after a couple (or then again, maybe not.) Not my favorite imperial but still quite good, I'll pick one up again if I come across another bottle.

Serving type: bottle

06-03-2004 17:58:08 | More by PopeJonPaul
Photo of RedDiamond


4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This stout is black with a steady tan head and a strong nose that travels far afield. Smells rich and chocolaty and like toast at first, with notes of sherry as the beverage warms. Has a nice round mouthfeel and a deep stout body.

The taste of alcohol makes itself known in the palate, but moreso in the belly. The flavor is nicely roasted and delivers an all-around muscular profile. This is no Rasputin, but it’s a solid imperial to be certain.

This beer attracted fruit flies – always a hallmark of a credible brew.

Serving type: bottle

05-28-2004 19:13:29 | More by RedDiamond
Photo of Zorro


3.5/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark clear black brew with ruby color when held up to a strong light.

Smell is sweet with a fruit and chocolate scent.

Taste is sweet and fruity and lighter than expected. Fruit flavors are coffee and chocolate are the dominant tastes. Flavor is a bit HOT from the alcohol content.

Mouthfeel is light.

A drinkable brew, but I like other versions better.

Serving type: on-tap

05-13-2004 05:02:52 | More by Zorro
Photo of aracauna


3.65/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This pours nicely, although it betrays its relatively light body (for an American-brewed Imperial Stout) with a relatively noisy pour. Nicely carbonated and it has a nice brown foam. The hoppy is a mixture of hoppy and burned malt. The flavor is heavily burned, slightly sweet on the end, but not a big range of flavor. The flavor is big, but a bit one-dimensional.

Serving type: bottle

05-10-2004 04:21:46 | More by aracauna
Photo of RoyalT


3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance – This was solid black with a modest head, warning of the impending altitude of ABV.

Smell – The roasted malts jumped out of the glass, giving way to big chocolate and fine South American coffee.

Taste – This is a strong Imperial Stout, full of fine chocolate and huge roasted malt flavors. The raw sugars brought up the rear.

Mouthfeel – This was close to full in the body and had a very playful mouthfeel.

Drinkability – This was a complicated but fine malty Imperial Stout.

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2004 03:27:19 | More by RoyalT
Ryan Sullivan's Imperial Stout from Moylan's Brewery
87 out of 100 based on 425 ratings.