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Hibernal Vinifera Stout - Ska Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Hibernal Vinifera StoutHibernal Vinifera Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

255 Ratings
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 255
Reviews: 57
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 9.16%
Wants: 8
Gots: 27 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Ska Brewing Co. visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Foreign / Export Stout |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: JMBSH on 12-29-2012

Oak Aged Foreign-style stout brewed with Malbec grape juice.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 255 | Reviews: 57
Photo of Scientist_McGee
4.76/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

I loved this beer. Loved the grape notes at the end.

Photo of dpgoblejr
4.75/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Dark brown color with a slight off white head and decent lacing. Fruit, most noticeably the grapes, are prevalent in the nose. For me, the taste is great. Coffee and grapes; a strange combo for sure but it works. Medium bodied and some carbonation too. I thoroughly enjoyed this brew and would happily pick it up again!

Photo of nphillips
2.31/5  rDev -41.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

Sickeningly sweet, over-carbonated, and way too thin to be enjoyed by this stout enthusiast!

Photo of Jovial_Libations
4.06/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Chocolaty nose. Thick black stout with a definite feel of the sweet grape on the finish. Very drinkable.

Photo of Jeffsta1
3.79/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Look: Nice dark black beer. Tan head, initially big bubbles.

Smell: A bit off of what I hope for in a stout. Lager-ish. Not offensive, but not great.

Taste is pretty nice: licorice. Some malt, some bitterness, bit mostly mild and easy drinking.

Mouthfeel is moderately rich. A bit lighter than the look, but not bad.

Good finish, well integrated, fits with the beer.

Photo of Rootscipio
4.28/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Wow this is awesome stuff, I just love the grape finish on this.

Photo of MakeMineADoubleJack
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A creamy, sweet stout. I wasn't sure what to expect with this, but the grape juice wasn't overpowering. It complemented the roasted notes quite well. Worth checking out.

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.21/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Stone flute. Pours nearly black with a fine one finger dark khaki head with good retention and nice lacing. Aroma of dark chocolate, toasted malt, plums, hint of coffee and oak. Flavor of charred dark malt, dark chocolate, coffee, woody oak, a hint of dark fruit; finishes with more charry malt, light hop bitterness and coffee. Medium bodied with good carbonation and mouth feel. A richly flavored, charred malt stout with light barrel character and a deftly handled fruit component. It tasted like plum juice, but must be from the dark grapes. Deceptively straightforward at first taste, but develops a nice range of complex fruit and toasted malt character. This was very good, I enjoyed it quite a bit. I look forward to trying other beers from this brewery. Nicely done.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.72/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On tap at Ojai Beverage Company in Ojai, CA.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Thick streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa powder, and dark fruit aromas. Taste is much the same with cocoa powder, earth, spice, wood, and slight fruit flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roast and spice bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with slight fruit qualities that aren't really all that reminiscent of grape juice to me.

Serving type: on tap.

Photo of biboergosum
3.97/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz can, a souvenir from the mixed-pack glory that are liquor stores on South Colorado Blvd in Denver.

This beer pours a pretty solid black abyss, in terms of 'colour', with slight cola-tinged basal edges, and a fistful of puffy, rocky, and densely bubbly brown head, which leaves some stellar dark forest spooky webbed lace around the glass as it slowly sinks away.

It smells of bittersweet powdered chocolate, roasted caramel/toffee malt, sort of sour milk, fruity red wine lees, a bit of oaken vanilla and wet wood stave astringency, coffee grounds, and a dry earthy mustiness. The taste is more toasted caramel malt, hard toffee, medium-dark chocolate, muddled dark fruit (ok, maybe a bit grapey) esters, a soft lactic sweetness, hints of woodsiness - both barrel and hop in orientation - and minor leafy, floral bitters.

The carbonation is fairly soft and innocuous in its understated meanderings, the body a sturdy medium weight, and actually quite smooth, the only tic seeming to be a rousing ('bout time, eh?) booziness. It finishes on the sweet side, as the cocoa, caramel, fruit, wood and booze all conspire to act civil and all that.

A pleasantly quaffable foreign stout, the wood and wine grape treatment adding a further bit of zest, but not overstepping their bounds at any time. Heady, hearty, and wholly unworthy of this gentile fall weather we're 'enduring' at the moment - maybe I should have saved this one for a few months.

Photo of tmm313
4.39/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pitch black. Poured an awesome 1 finger, creamy, khaki colored head. Great lacing.

S- Roasted malts, caramel, chocolate, toffee, grape, slight coffee, and light vanilla. Seems like there might be some oats, too. Oak gets stronger as it warms.

T- Very nice. Caramel, chocolate, coffee, and oak hits first. Midway, these flavors are met by the grapes, which ties the flavors together wonderfully. Finish is a mix of coffee, rich chocolate, and roasted malts. Beautiful balance and an awesome mix of flavors. As refreshing as a stout could be.

M- Medium light body, which works well to compliment the flavors. Slightly drying with a light, charred aftertaste. Good crisp carbonation.

O- I enjoyed this much more than I thought I would. I'm typically not a fan of grapey tasting stouts, so I wasn't expecting much. But here, the grape adds a wonderful accent and acts more as a binding agent than anything else. I would definitely have this again.

Photo of MinisterCurry
4.24/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A - rich, dark brown, seems viscous. Pours slowly and distributes easily into pint glass. Head disappeared rather quickly, but did not detract from aroma. Very little residue on sides of serving pint glass after a few drinks.

S - deep aromas of dark chocolate and unsweetened cocoa. Essence of plum, dark grape, oak and cedar. Even some brown butter later after drinking.

T - initial milk chocolate progresses into notes of darker chocolate, bing cherry, strawberry, oak and hints of black pepper. The grape flavors seem more subtle than the other fruits but are there. Finishes off-dry like dark chocolate or a big red wine with a fading creaminess at the same time.

O - an innovative offering of the style with the Malbec grape juice and oak aging. Pair with grilled and roasted dark meats, purple beats, eggplant, berries, raw shellfish, chocolate cakes and puddings, white cheeses but maybe not bleu or feta.

Photo of StoneTSR
4.04/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

APPEARANCE: This beer has a pretty head, particularly for a stout. The beige foam swells up as soon as it is poured from the can to about a finger’s width. The retention is pretty decent as it slowly settles down into a wispy cap that reveals just a peak of beer that is pretty much straight black underneath it. The lacing is outstanding, covering 90% of the back of the glass.

SMELL: Roasty, coffee-like malt aromas dominate while hints of dark chocolate and grape.

TASTE: The dark chocolate of the nose seems more like a rich, milk chocolate on the palate. The coffee flavors are still present, but they are much more subdued, especially up front. The medium, roasty bitterness is perfectly balanced with the chocolate and subtle grape flavors.

MOUTHFEEL: Again, this is a very well balanced beer. Begins sweet and slowly fades into a more bitter finish. At 8%, the Vinifera drinks like it’s a 10%-plus Imperial Stout with a nice, medium to big body. Rich, silky and smooth.

OVERALL: Of the seasonal stouts, I have to say this is my favorite. The body of this beer is just right and hits the spot either on a cold winter night or on a mild, sunny, late-winter afternoon here in Colorado. Great decision for their Hibernal beer.

Photo of dbrauneis
3.92/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours an opaque but clear jet black in color with light to moderate amounts of gentle carbonation along the surface of the beer and some very dark cola brown highlights. The beer has a two finger tall dense foamy mocha head that slowly reduces to a half finger thick layer covering the entire surface of the beer with a slightly thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate to strong aromas of roasted and charred malts with lighter aromas of oak, chocolate, and dark fruit (red wine grapes).

T: Upfront there are moderate flavors of roasted and charred malts with some light to moderate flavors of dark chocolate, vanilla, and oak. The dark fruit/red wine grape starts out as a light flavor but builds to a moderate flavor as the beer warms up. Very light amounts of initial sweetness that quickly fades into a light to moderate amount of lingering bitterness.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly creamy upfront with moderate amounts of dryness in the finish.

O: Enjoyable and easy to drink - I could see myself having one to two of these in an evening and finding it quite pleasant. I like the mixture of the wine grapes and the stout flavors and aromas with a nice note of the oak barrels from aging. Well done and I will probably grab another couple of these the next time I see them.

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.96/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Near black with a nice lasting brown head and good lace.

Aroma and flavor very nice, an up-close smell hints of a bigger stout than it actually is (no shortage of aroma). However, balance is the word for this tasty beer. Burnt, toasted, roasted, and dark fruit flavors balance nicely, with just enough bitterness to make for a very well rounded stout.

Alcohol is well hidden and the medium to full body is surprisingly drinkable. Good job Ska, I've yet to have one of your beers that I didn't like.

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.94/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a can into a shaker pint, the beer pours a thick, viscous, jet black coloring with a thin, filmy, clingy, light tan head. Aromas of roast, cream, peat, earth, wood, and subtle char. Very well blended and balanced aromas. Flavors are roast and creamy forward, with a tart and sweet grape note ribboning throughout. Very unique and balanced. Subtle chocolate notes in the background, with hints of smoke and char throughout. Touches of bitter coffee, too. Smooth and robust in mouth, with a bitter and roasted aftertaste of baker's chocolate and booze. The finish is smooth, with a subtle bitter and rich linger. This is a big beer, and a very unique twist on the style. Tasty.

Photo of Riverwarrior
4.53/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Jester King glass. Appearance had a deep purplish color when pouring, but was black once all settled in the glass. A very nice two-finger head appeared with tight bubbles.

The aroma was roasted chocolate notes and caramel upfront with a slight grape/plum sweetness in the background. I didn't get much oak, but the roasted notes were dominant in the nose.

The taste was truly fantastic. Starting with a sweetness, possibly from the Malbec grapes, that transitioned into a roasted coffee flavor. The finish was semi-sweet but still had the nice roasted coffee/baker's chocolate flavors intermingling with the grape sweetness. Very nice indeed. It really made for a nice balance of flavors and nothing ever became cloying.

The mouth feel was actually creamy and the carbonation was a little below moderate.

Overall, this was one of the best "Foreign/Export" stouts that I've had. I will definitely be stocking the fridge.

Photo of ZoomanCru
4.12/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Vinifera Stout – Foreign Stout (8%) - Ska Brewing Co. (Colorado)
☆☆☆☆

App: Pours an opaque black with just the slightest reddish hues in strong light. Massive three finger head forms, then settles to half finger medium reddish-brown ring with high, sticky lacing all over the glass.

Smell: Nose is firmly stout like with dry roasted grains foremost in aroma. Some slight grape skin like tannic aromas very subtle in the background. Minor alcohol twinge. Bouquet is mild, but takes on a more vinous character as it warms, but it certainly doesn't smell like malbec.

Taste: Grape flavors are mild and most clear on the foretaste, but present through true- and after taste. Mildly sweet, earthy, and not without a touch of acidity. Malt is dark and mostly dry with a hint of dark caramel. Subtle chocolate and oak flavors. Tastes more like stout than anything else, but the grape does add an extra dimension that is simultaneously sweet, tannic, and dry. Roasted as well as grape flavors linger long after swallowing.

Mouth: Full bodied with soft carbonation that allows the complex flavors to play against one another. Alcohol is slightly warming, but not overpowering. Slight dryness from grapes and roasted malts.

Home tasting, 12oz can into Snifter. 2/19/14.

Photo of JohnBender
4.16/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A- Jet black. Little head, light brown.

S- Roasted, chocolate, a little alcohol.

T- More of the same. A little acidic, a little UK. Very nice.

M- Thick and matches the style.

O- Very nice altogether. I usually don't like Ska, but this is a very good beer.

Photo of arizcards
3.84/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Picked up a can at Total Wine in mid-November for $1.99. Best by May 04 2013. Received at Total Wine 10-11-13. Hmmm...last year's vintage...we will see how it goes.

Beer poured dark brown with a robust tan head that is leaving lacing behind.

Nose is chocolate and hints of dark fruits.

Taste is chocolate with a touch of grape. Finish is dry.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and pretty smooth.

Overall this is a pretty decent stout that has a nice little twist with the grape. Well played by Ska!

Photo of Immortale25
3.96/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a New Belgium goblet. Bottom of can says Best By 05 May 14

A- Pours a 99% opaque black color with a 3/4 inch light brown head that retains well before slinking down to a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a half sheet of surface foam. Semi-resilient lacing leaves a solid ring behind.

S- Rich dark roasted malt creates a nice bouquet of dark chocolate, caramel and coffee. Some traces of oak.

T- Flavor isn't quite as impressive as there's a char that doesn't quite go well with the rest of the profile. I can kind of get the grape juice notes but it doesn't do much to offset the overly prevalent char. The notes found in the aroma are lost to a typical dark roast that's more bitter than sweet and is pretty one-dimensional. That being said, the drinkability is high even after multiple sips. Also, there's a considerable amount of hop bitterness which isn't exactly welcome in this case. Plus I'm struggling to find any oak which was hinted at in the smell.

M- Slightly creamy and soft with medium carbonation and a very full body.

O- A good try, although I feel like they should've gone more extreme with the base beer if they were going to age it on oak. Maybe use more grape juice? Instead, what's left is an above-average stout that you wouldn't know saw any time in a barrel. Ska's hoppier, less malty offerings are definitely more where it's at.

Photo of MisterNic
3.46/5  rDev -12%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance- Motor oil, dark tan 1 finger head

Smell- Chocolate, some roastiness, vanilla

Taste- Huge hop flavor at the front of the tongue, middle dark bitter chocolate, coffee, caramel, bourbon notes, finish is bitter, roasty, dry coffee

Mouthfeel- Full-bodied, motor oil thickness

Overall- Overall, this is an excellent imperial stout. I don't pick up any of the malbec grape juice, but I think that's a good thing. I would definitely buy it again.

Photo of Axnjxn
4.03/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

can poured into a FW tulip @ room temp. BB May 2014

Pours an opaque black with a big beige head. Nice looking stout pour. The smell is very in your face with malts and chocolate right as you open the can...and i can get a hint of grape juice flavor too. very nice nose! The taste is quite creamy and chocolately...a bit light though. Tad thin. Exceptionally easy to drink but by no means a big beer. ABV of 8% of almost impossible as it tastes like a normal 5% stout. impressive? perhaps but i was expecting more of a body. Still the taste is right and this could honestly be sessionable and guzzled...but at 8% might be a bad move.

Overall great nose and good flavor...body quite light.

Photo of ISmith87
3.99/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - 3.75 - Beer is a dark brown black color with no head and therefore no lacing.
S - 4.00 - Dark malts, dark fruits, grape, some alcohol. Roasty notes. Dark chocolate.
T - 4.00 - Dark, roasty malts, dark fruits, grape and some alcohol - basically the same as the smell.
M - 4.00 - Medium - heavy. Some alcohol taste. Aftertaste is roasty, little bit of alcohol, some dark fruit type tastes.
O - 4.00 - It's somewhere between a belgian stout and an imperial stout. I like it. It's a little light bodied, but that's probably due to the grape juice drying it out.

Photo of mcflypie
4.06/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Deep and dark; slight purplish. A little lacing.

S: Grape and oak smells.

T: Strong oak and grape flavors. With nutty, malt, and earthy undertones.

M: A strong oak-aged stout that shows its alcoholic flavor at times.

O: Tasty and rich in moderation, too many may become too much. Great and interesting beer though.

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Hibernal Vinifera Stout from Ska Brewing Co.
88 out of 100 based on 255 ratings.