Old Rasputin XVIII (Aged In Wheat Whiskey Barrels)
North Coast Brewing Co.

Old Rasputin XVIII  (Aged In Wheat Whiskey Barrels)Old Rasputin XVIII  (Aged In Wheat Whiskey Barrels)
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Stout - Russian Imperial
4.16 | pDev: 8.41%
North Coast Brewing Co.
California, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Old Rasputin XVIII  (Aged In Wheat Whiskey Barrels)Old Rasputin XVIII  (Aged In Wheat Whiskey Barrels)
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Reviews: 23 | Ratings: 98 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Harrison8
Harrison8 from Missouri

4.15/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours black with two fingers of khaki tan foam up top. Aroma is deep and dark, notching notes of roasty, toasty, nutty, caramely, and bready malts with sweet molasses and chocolate intertwined. Wheat whiskey and char add a little swell of heat, which compliments the beer well. Flavor profile is roasty, toasty, bready, caramely malts with a uptick of heat at the end thanks to wheat whiskey and char. Start is smooth and malty with the end featuring a little playful heat. Mouth feel is medium-thick with a smooth, creamy consistency. Overall, really solid, hearty stout up front that's been complimented well by an accompanying layer of whiskey and barrel char.

Served in a 16oz stemless wine glass from a 500mL bottle.

Mar 28, 2021
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Marius from Netherlands

4.33/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle shared at August THT. Very dark brown pour with a medium height tan head. Notes of whiskey barrel, bourbon, oak barrel, vanilla and coconut. Medium to full bodied, medium carbonation and a spicy bourbon finish.

Dec 11, 2016
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NolaHopHead from Louisiana

4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle. Good looking brew. Aroma and taste were solid but fell short of expectations. Bourbon was mild, wood flavor was there, not much sweetness. Had a different taste I'm guessing from the wheat. Slick feel but a bit on the thin side. Enjoyed it, nice brew, just was hoping for more.

Sep 24, 2016
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DrinkThemAll from California

4.34/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What a find at a local liquor store! One of my favorite beers already, but barrel aged in whiskey barrels, what else do you need?

A-Poured out like used motor oil, with a solid 2 finger khaki head that sticks around for most of the duration, but dissipates to just a ring. Very nice looking beer.

S-Molasses, whiskey, plum, roasted sweet malt, slightly boozy with an inviting aroma. Slighty robust and delicious. Just want to keep smelling it.

T-Deep roasted malts, molasses, sweet whiskey and faint chocolate. Extremely balanced for what it is. Goes down super smooth and Slighty bitter. Has a pleasant whisky malt after taste that lingers. Very nice.

M-Thick like molasses, mild carbonation, with a roasted whiskey dry finish. Brings you back for more.

O-Amazing beer to say the least!! I wish I had a full cellar of these guys. Rasputin never fails to deliver, in any form.

Sep 07, 2016
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Hop_God from California

4.02/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: thick khaki head and dark espresso in appearance

S: not as much bourbon as i expected, subtle booze and some dark chocolate

T: This fell so flat for me- some dark fruits and ever so faint bourbon- was expecting sweetness from the wheat but nothing. damn, what a shame

F: too thin and watery, coulda used some cloyingness but didn't even have that. finishes clean

O: Im sooooo deflated with how much this let me down, I wanted to like this one real bad but it is just not up to par with others in its style and the price point on top of it makes this a likely one and done for me.

Jul 12, 2016
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SD-Alefan from South Dakota

4.38/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours from the bottle a deep, opaque black with a slight tan head.
The aroma is full of roasted notes -- dark chocolate ans coffee with whiskey right behind as well as a bit oif vanilla and a hint of alcohol.
The taste is loaded with chocolate , dark and milk, with a bit of whickey and vanilla some bitter coffee and more dark chocolate in the bitter finish.
Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy.
Loved it.

Jun 12, 2016
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Kardillamo from Wisconsin

5/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I genuinely believe this is the perfect beer. It is sweet, bitter, full of chocolate and coffee, hops and malt, it has a gamut of flavors and emotional expressions, making it by far one of my favorite beers of all time. It's only better was the barrel aged blackout stout by Great Lakes Brewing, which is long past. It's going to take a lot to dethrone this beer.

Apr 24, 2016
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nickfl from Florida

3.55/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hot, spicy and harsh. Very dry and roasty with excessive bitterness in the finish. I was looking forward to this one and find myself oddly disappointed. It's disjointed and boozy to the point of being reminiscent of lighter fluid. Not sure what went wrong here, but something did.

Apr 03, 2016
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ONovoMexicano from New Mexico

4.04/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I started a review and lost it, so here's my second attempt.

I poured a 500mL bottle into an oversized cognac glass.

The pour was deep brown before sitting in the glass like engine oil. I poured vigorously and a monstrous head resulted. Lace abound, in patches and streaks and as the head settled, it formed into a plateau. A sight to behold. 5

Smell was oaken whiskey with notes of chocolate and vanilla. Booze didn't dominate, but everything else still felt subdued. 4

The flavor starts off booze-dominant, overwhelmed by whiskey. It's not as bothersome here as in other overly boozy brews. I immediately notice a bitter dark chocolate finish. That I like. Strangely, there's a citrusy, orange peel flavor that keeps popping up here. Unexpected and peculiar, but welcome. Warmth doesn't completely open this beer up, but vanilla and sweet malt and creamier milk chocolate flavors start to peek in. Yeasty notes were more prevalent early on but eventually fade almost completely. Overall, I do feel the barrels bested the base beer here, but I still enjoy this. 4

Flavor and palate both reflect an immense amount of booze. Creaminess manages to establish a foothold despite the astringency and inject some sweetness into the solvent, spicy mix. Touches of dry bitterness also show, but even on the finish, a whiskey bite dominates. 3.75

Too hot for me. In years past, I'd have bought multiples of this to age one and see how it developed. I've sworn off that practice for the most part, so I'm not sure I'll ever experience this beast with some age. Unfortunate, because that is what I think it most needs, some aging.

Feb 22, 2016
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4DAloveofSTOUT from Illinois

4.49/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

black bodied beer with 2 fingers of khaki head that drops down to thin cap. This smells of milk chocolate, deep oak notes and mild bourbon. Taste is much the same. So much chocolate and dry oak character it really is impressive. A hint of earthy hop to balance nicely. Mild to moderate bourbon presence. A medium body stout with moderate / ample carbonation. Creamy carbonation with no booze what so ever. Super smooth and well integrated barrel aged stout. Overall this is pretty nice barrel aged stout! Another example of the fact that North Coast really has barrel aging dialed into a science. This is much better than wheat whiskey old stock cellar reserve straight out of the gates. Quite impressed to say the least.

Feb 20, 2016
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JohnGalt1 from Idaho

3.99/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft tonight at B:30... Pitch black with a sorta viscous quality... dark khaki head.. Nose is pretty standard for North Coast stouts.. pretty hoppy .. plenty of dark malt verging on char... whisky notes are heavy and unapologetic.. Medium bodied and smooth carbonation.. vanilla and light marshmallow elements from the barrel... very nice.. Would happily have this again.


Feb 20, 2016
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larryarms847 from Illinois

4.16/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a viscous but not tar-like dark brown, edging black with a frothy finger and a half of light brown foam that settles out quickly, but leaves gentle lacing.

Chocolate, char, oak, slight spiciness, and whiskey.

Bitter char and oak flavor up front that fades to chocolate notes and finishes with more roasty bitterness and some whiskey heat.

Heavy-bodied, low-medium carbonation, creamy, sightly chewy, but a little hot and boozy.

As a fan of both Old Raspy and the BBA version, I was glad to see other variants. This falls on the bottom of that totem pole, but this is definitely worth a sampling as it stays interesting.

Jan 26, 2016
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Roguer from Georgia

4.18/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Beautiful dark brew with a very large tan head; good retention.

On the palate and the nose, the brew is nutty, slightly ashy, with no oxidation. Tons of whiskey, but dry and spicy vice sweet (in other words: clearly differentiated from bourbon).

Jan 25, 2016
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marieli from Texas

4.31/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Draft at Flying Saucer. I let it warm up a little; estimate starting temp 50+. I was very surprised at how much I enjoyed this beer because I am not a fan of Old Rasputin. I will let those with more developed palates tell you all the details. I am iffy with barrel aged stouts. I prefer those that are less pronounced and on the smooth side. For example, I really enjoyed Black Betty. Bourbon County is the creamiest and best mouth feel I've tasted of any ale, but the alcohol can be too pronounced, especially at lower temps. This Rasputin was on the sweeter side, very smooth and leaned toward cream-like mouth feel. I hope to try again at some point.

Jan 16, 2016
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HopHunter19 from Missouri

4.58/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - pitch black beer with a nice mocha head that leaves great lacing
S - big whiskey, caramel, sugar, dark malts, chocolate, marshmallow, coffee. Wheat, oak. Really heavy, nice oak when you stop and appreciate it.
T - nice whiskey, oak, woodiness, dark roasted and chocolate malts, caramel, burnt marshmallow, more oak bite than the smell.
M - heavy mouthfeel, alc covered, aftertaste is toasty malts, coffee, whiskey
O - great beer, high price point brings it down.

Dec 17, 2015
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THSmusicman from Pennsylvania

4.46/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Got this beer for my birthday. Great start to being 21!

Look: Dark as the night sky with a lovely tan head that leaves much lacing on the glass. No light penetrates through this beer.

Smell: Smells like an average barrel aged stout; tons of molasses and brown sugar, whiskey, light licorice, tons of chocolate and a slight ethyl alcohol scent. Not the best aspect of this beer.

Taste: The taste follows the nose pretty well with a slightly woodier taste than the nose would lead to. The whiskey taste on this is very subtle. I'm also getting a nice roasted coffee at the end of the sip.

Feel: This is where the beer excels; as smooth as silk. Almost has a milky character to it. Perfect feel for a barrel aged stout; not too thick and not in the least bit thin.

Overall: This beer is fantastic! So glad I had the opportunity to try this beer! If you can get this, it's a must! It's not a bourbon lovers' dream though....very light on the bourbon and very smooth. Great way to celebrate my birthday!

Dec 09, 2015
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Dope from Massachusetts

3.83/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

No bottling date but recently released.

A: Jet-black pour with a good sized medium brown head. Great head retention. Mild bits of lacing.

S: A bit of alcohol burn initially. Grainy with hints of chocolate. Oaky vanilla. Pretty subtle other than the burn.

T: Sharp alcohol burn right out of the gate. Definitely wheat whiskey - it doesn't have that caramel sweetness of a typical bourbon and doesn't have the spicy bite of a rye. It's sort of generic grain alcohol flavor with some vanilla. Almost bland at times. Big alcohol burn continues through the taste. Mild chocolate and charry oak but it's mainly that big wheat whiskey flavor everywhere. Lingering alcohol and oak in the aftertaste.

M: Heavy, smooth with big alcohol burn everywhere.

O: Hmph. A bit of an unfortunate barrel choice. Big boozy burn covers up most of the base beer. Super boozy with a quick stomach warming effect. Hmm, it's not like it tastes super harsh, it's just that the alcohol flavor envelopes everything. It tastes like it's half wheat whiskey and half old rasputin instead of just being aged in the empty barrels. It's not bad but a disappointment compared to any other Old Rasputin or variant I've had. Especially for the crazy cost. Maybe it's just a cheap/crappy wheat whiskey, I'm not sure.

Nov 25, 2015
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aquazr1 from California

4.01/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle served in a tulip. Pours black with a tan head. Nose is whiskey with some roasted malts. Taste is whiskey and chocolate. Really smooth and not too hot.

Nov 22, 2015
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hotmailmsn from Canada (BC)

3.64/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

11.95% ABV, ?? ibu, on tap.
A - dark black (dark brown under light) with one finger brown head.
S - whiskey aroma dominated, oak, bit of vanilla, chocolate. it doesn't have much Original Old Rasputin charcuteries.
T - welly carbonated. smooth, rich, whiskey flavor did very well job here, black coffee bitterness, liquorice, molasses, rich; hint of heat down the throat.
O - really good experience which whiskey barrel infused lots of favors into an imperial stout. there're many stout said its barreled aged, but didn't have such aroma n taste, very clear that it couldn't be a daily RIS, it's too strong of both flavor n ABV. but it def worth to try!! great RIS!!!!

Nov 09, 2015
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StraightNoChaser from Georgia

4.47/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

look: Black as night or maybe Rasputin's heart. Opaque to the naked eye. Huge tan head on a soft pour, that sticks around. Gorgeous.
smell: That harsh delightful burnt roastiness of the base beer with a counter of bourbon and barrel vanilla.
taste: And this lives up to it's wonderful predecessors. Like the nose, it's got all that nice harsh burnt thing with a counter of bourbon and vanilla and alcohol so well hidden.

Nov 01, 2015
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vic21234 from Illinois

4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500ml corked and caged bottle poured into a snifter.

A- Pours black as expected with dark khaki colored head which quickly dissipates. Small fizzy bubbles are apparent from the carbonation as well.

S- Sweet chocolate and whiskey on the nose.

T- Some sweet chocolate and cocoa are initially noted before the oak and whiskey kicks in.

M- Heavy yet well carbonated, nice whiskey taste at the end of each sip.

I enjoy this one, and will grab another to see how it ages. The only thing I don't like is the price point.

Oct 25, 2015
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bobhits from Kentucky

3.19/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Barrel aged rasputin this year the standard version didn't make it out of cali but instead we get a rye and wheat. I'm a bit interested in wheat as I expect rye to add a nice bite, but wheats tend to bring out more sweetness which I'm not sure how to plan for it. I've always questioned if the base of this is actually rasputin, the beer seems to take on notes of something else unlike the beer and the barrel.

Pours a HUGE amount of carbonation, some lacing but seems odd. The body is dark though some light brings out some reddish and brown hues.

The nose starts chocolate, dark at first then moves to brownies, and then a wheat whiskey finish (whiskey but just a hair more sugar).

Espresso, chocolate, whiskey barrels and the a strange sugary ending with a really terrible alcohol note. Wow, this was not remotely what I expected. The nose has ZERO alcohol notes. The first taste nothing, but wow I'm getting cheap alcohol notes. The finish in this beer really poorly fits right now, but I feel age can take the front of the mouth feel and turn it into something great. Or at least better.

I seriously had great thoughts on this one. The opening, great, the nose , good, the looks, good....but the finish just fails.

Oct 23, 2015
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BEERchitect from Kentucky

4.27/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

With one of the most anticipated annual releases on the beer calendar, the North Coast brewers reward their fans with two variations: a rye barrel-aged release and this wheat-barrel option that carries a smoother, creamier and sweeter balance to its massive stout within.

Ominous in its depth of black, the beer pours of espresso with a mocha-stained swirling froth. The nose is quickly awash with dark chocolate, robust coffee and the unmistakable twinge of chocolate. Its initial taste is sweet and stern with lightly scorched molasses, chocolate brownie and the faintness of circus peanut candy.

As the stout coats the mouth evenly, its apex occurs with notions of bourbon and brownie batter as the robust sweetness of molasses and toffee relax and the earthiness of walnut, espresso and cocoa invite barrel and booze nuances. Still, an prevailing marshmallowy taste and texture balances the spicy booze and offers its own oaken tannic balance. Coffee-like and cocoa-like bitterness frame a broad and bitter balance while the soft nuttiness of oak seems cashew-like and of dry bread.

Full and creamy on the palate, the stout finishes supremely toasty, chocolaty and bourbon with suggestions of bourbon ball candy. But the surprising creaminess of the barrel and booze retains a nougat-like finish with hints of butternut squash. The wheat barrel offers a playful level of intrigue that's not easily uncovered in the beer world.

Oct 21, 2015
Old Rasputin XVIII (Aged In Wheat Whiskey Barrels) from North Coast Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 98 ratings