Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99! (Limited time offer, US delivery only)

Old Stock Ale | North Coast Brewing Co.

Your Rating: None

Want it   Got it 
Old Stock AleOld Stock Ale
BA SCORE
4.12/5
Exceptional
3,247 Ratings
Old Stock AleOld Stock Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
North Coast Brewing Co.
California, United States
northcoastbrewing.com

Style: Old Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-26-2001

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#1,778
Reviews:
1,518
Ratings:
3,247
pDev:
10.68%
Bros Score:
4.19
 
 
Wants:
188
Gots:
687
Trade:
20
HISTOGRAM
 
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,247 |  Reviews: 1,518
Photo of chrishou1970
5/5  rDev +21.4%

Photo of mtlasley
3.84/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

This bottle is one of two I purchased from the 2011 vintage. I drank this from a tulip glass.

The first pour results in a gorgeous deep amber with a light head that bubbles fast and dissipates quickly. Mild Lacing is observed and noticeable bubbling.

The Odor offers up smells of whiskey, apple and other fruits I can't put my finger on. The mild smell is surprising, maybe she needs to warm a bit. As I go back I smell cherries and figs. More smells reveal caramel and toffee, this is one complex beast.

That first sip is so smooth that I could swear this beer isn't 12% ABV I get tastes of whiskey, caramel, toffee, apple, cherries, fig. Everything comes together and lays so well.

Bold on the tongue, it chooses to stick to the back of the mouth rather than the front. The carbonation helps mask how thick the beer is.

Overall, this beer is great. Drinkable, smart, complex. The mouthfeel is a little lacking and this is definitely a beer you need to sip.

 963 characters

Photo of dudeabides76
4/5  rDev -2.9%

Photo of dbrauneis
4.05/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2012 Vintage

A: Pours a crystal clear garnet red in color. The beer has a half finger tall beige head that reduces to a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Light to moderate lacing is observed.

S: There are lots of aromas in this beer with a nice complexity. I get notes of vanilla, caramel malts, and some dark fruit (fig). Overall a fairly sweet smelling beer with some light hint of alcohol.

T: The taste follows the smell with an almost cloying sweetness to this beer. There is a definite presence of caramel malts along with some brown sugar and molasses. After that the dark fruit is very noticeable with fig being most dominant of the dark fruits. There is a light hint of vanilla and some wood. Light lingering presence of alcohol.

M: Medium bodied with moderate to heavy amounts of carbonation. Some alcohol heat is present. Smooth.

O: Overall, there is just a little too much alcohol presence in this beer (in the taste, smell, and mouthfeel) for it to be easy to drink. While it is not the easiest to drink, it is not unenjoyable. This is definitely a sipping beer.

 1,083 characters

Photo of jmbraxton
5/5  rDev +21.4%

Photo of 6demonbag
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

Photo of vandemonian
4.06/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Old Stock Ale is a delicious old ale. One of the better ones. Great to drink on a cold, wet night.

A: Clear red colour and a 15 mm head that lasts. Beautiful. 4.5

S: Malty with some yeast and cardboard. 3.5

T: Malty with sweet toffee flavours and an oxidised cardboard finish. The alcohol is pretty noticable at the end. 4

M: Nice sharp little bubbles. 4.5

O: 4.5

 368 characters

Photo of lsummers
4.19/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter, Dark red/brown, not clear but not hazy. Small white head that settles to a rim around the top

Smell is amazing, Like a summer breeze carrying dates, tobacco, and raisons. Just smells fresh and fruity.

The taste is so complex! It changes throughout, initially it makes it abv present, although still hides it's 11.9%. Carries through with the dark fruit flavors of raisons and dates, almost like apricots as well. After taste is very pleasant, it's the only thing keeping me from taking another sip right away.

The mouthfeel is ok, It is a sticky beer which I would expect but there's something about the carbonation that seems to let the strength of the beer come through. Still, I'm being hard on this part of the review.

Overall, I enjoyed it, I would prefer this on tap. I wouldn't mind trying this again at all. I would recomend this to a friend, with the condition of on tap is best for this one.

 928 characters

Photo of Murrhey
3.87/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Reviewed live.

A- Poured a very thin, soapy off-white head. Retention fades quickly. Large bubbles, possibly from the high ABV. Nice coppery color with excellent clarity.

S- Brandy, caramel, brown sugar, raisins and dates. Dark and sweet with a distinct booziness.

T- Brandy, tobacco, burnt sugar, dried dark fruits. Powerful flavor. Knock ya on your butt. The cognac-like flavor is strong, as is the strange tobacco sense of earthy, dark flavors. Complex, strong flavor.

M- Wet and sticky feel with resin-y aftertastes.

O- This is a strange beer. Not easy to drink, but worth the effort.

 640 characters

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.88/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

this beer totally kicked my ass. i was unaware of the abv, and its fairly well hidden, so i ended up a whole lot more wasted than i set out to get, but thats okay... pours a thick honey color with an average white bubbly head. smells of sweet caramel, fresh apples, and fruity yeast. flavor is complex and very rich. there are tropical fruity notes from the yeast like banana and papaya, but they are subtle. balanced by earthy sweet hops that come more to the fore in the finish. again, the alcohol content is not readily apparent, so be careful with this one. feel is nice, if a bit on the heavier side body-wise. fair carbonation. overall an exciting beer that is entirely original as far as i am concerned. ill just have to proceed with more caution next time i hook into one of these...

 791 characters

Photo of ballz50401
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

Photo of KevdoggNasty
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of RattleheadKV2
4.37/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

2010 vintage poured into Unibroue tulip.

Appearance: Pours a dark mahogany with about a finger of very effervescent, tan head that dissipates very quickly to a small ring lining the glass, leaving no lacing whatsoever. Very apparent alcohol legs on this one, but at 11.7% that's no surprise.

Smell: Very rich, sweet maltyness upfront, some caramel, and toffee notes are present. Quite a bit of dark fruits here; plums, raisins, figs ect. A very slight alcohol smell lingers in the background.

Taste: Sweet malty breadiness at the front of the tounge, moving back, you get a nice bite from the alcohol, as well as all the dark fruits to smooth everything out.

Mouthfeel: Nice medium body here, very remincient of a dopplebock.

Overall: Very big beer, I love it! Much sweeter than I thought it would be. I was expecting a boozy mess, but was pleasantly surprised, I will be collecting this release from now on.

 913 characters

Photo of Crimsontider22
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of gleemonger
5/5  rDev +21.4%

Photo of Vylo
3.5/5  rDev -15%

Photo of jsurfs82
4.75/5  rDev +15.3%

Photo of Stinkypuss
4.04/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

North Coast : Old Stock Ale

Ontap, presumably fresh. Appears a deep gold/light orange color with a soapy foam and lots of lacing.

Smell is quite intriguing and definitly good. Aromas of honey, tropical fruit, pineapple, and generally reminded me of a fresh pack of fruit snacks. Alcoholic esters are in small force.

In the taste, I was surprised how hop forward this ale was. Piney, citrusy, tropical like flavors from the hops. Some grapefruit rind, earthy bitters and herbal elements are also there. The flavor also touches upon ripe melon, honey suckle, pear and small bourbon as well.

The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied, a bit slick and well carbonated.

Overall, fresh, this is an impressive beer. It makes me want to pick up a few vintages and compare how this holds over time, though it feels like a shame to let the hops fade.

 845 characters

Photo of TheSandPeople
5/5  rDev +21.4%

Photo of haazer
4.09/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 bottle.

A- A hard pour leaves a large, tight carmel colored head. Brew is a copper and dark cherry color. Effervescent bubbles on the top of the brew makes head diminish.

S- Big amounts of vanilla, caramel and dark fruits. Some molasses, figs, brown sugar, and a slight bit of bourbon. No booze. Smells great.

T- The flavor follows the nose but not quite as good. The vanilla and bourbon flavor is there, and theres also a bit of cherry and plum. I get a bit of nuttiness too. A bit of heat but the booze has mellowed out from more than a year of sitting. Fresh I could see this being pretty hot.

M- Medium bodied brew with smooth, low to mid level carbonation. A bit of warming and drying from the abv but nothing intense. How and old ale should feel.

O- A real good old ale. I agree with the other BA's on the avg score of this brew. I feel like the age has given it my rating. I'd like to have a fresh bottle but I feel it would be too hot. Love the subtle bourbon flavor. Would love to try the uber expensive barrel version.

 1,041 characters

Photo of Zodijackyl
4.97/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours ruby red. Aroma of sticky caramel candy, delicious. Taste of sticky, savory caramel malt, strong and tart. The barley has a rustic, coppery taste similar to heavier Belgian tripels/quads. Extremely drinkable for a beer this heavy. There's a bit of hop sweetness that shines through in the aftertaste. Extremely clean mouthfeel, the taste has a strong presence, but it is purely pleasant, throughout and after.

Very smooth and balanced, doesn't taste as strong as it is, there's not even a hint of alcohol. Top notch.

 523 characters

Photo of Swervine44
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

Photo of JustinMatthew
5/5  rDev +21.4%

Photo of beardedterror
1.93/5  rDev -53.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

2012 vintage: Poured into a snifter, served at cellar temps:

A: Pours a deep ruby red color. 1 finger head, which dissipates quickly: to be expected of something this high ABV.

S: Pineapple is the first thing I notice, which is not really welcomed in an old ale. Some crystal malts and some dark fruit come in much, much later, but the pineapple is very overpowering.

T: Booze. Very harsh, unpleasant fruity alcohol flavor dominates the front palate. Slightly bitter, with a very strange fruit flavor that I can't put my finger on; closest to pineapple. Very slight roasty, caramel flavor comes through 2 minutes after initial taste. Very long lasting finish. Absolutely no hop flavors whatsoever.

M: Creamy, thick texture. Feels good in the mouth. Low carbonation. Very harsh, hot alcohol feel.

O: Should probably be aged for at least another year. EXTREMELY far outside the style guidelines for an Old ale. Nearly outside for a barleywine at that. Harsh alcohol flavors make this unpleasant. Tastes like pineapple booze.

 1,027 characters

Photo of LiquidAmber
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Review from 6/2011 notes. Poured into a Black Raven pint glass. Pours a dark red amber. Half finger light tan dissipating head and light lacing. Aroma of caramel malt, dark fruits. Subdued aroma. Very sweet flavor of caramel malt, brown sugar, black cherries. A bit of a sharp sherry like taste. Still hot and not quite balanced, but complex. Have some in the cellar.

 367 characters

Old Stock Ale from North Coast Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.12 out of 5 with 3,247 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.