Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout | North Coast Brewing Co.

Old Rasputin Russian Imperial StoutOld Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout
12,279 Ratings
Old Rasputin Russian Imperial StoutOld Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout

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

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Produced in the tradition of 18th Century English brewers who supplied the court of Russia’s Catherine the Great, Old Rasputin seems to develop a cult following wherever it goes. It’s a rich, intense brew with big complex flavors and a warming finish.

Added by kbub6f on 01-18-2001

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Ratings: 12,279 |  Reviews: 3,736
Photo of MrKennedy
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle purchased from Platinum Liquor, North Strathfield and poured into a Mikkeller tulip.

Visually spectacular, pouring a thick black with a "top deck" head of foam that is a darker tan down the bottom and lighter up top. Poured with two fingers of foam and settling down at a quarter-inch with some good glass lacing.

Aromas are hoppy initially, mixed with dark chocolate and some coffee. Big roasted malt smell as well which makes it enticing.

Nice mix of flavours, chocolate initially, hoppy in the middle and finishing with a touch of coffee.

Mouthfeel is great, coating the mouth, finishing with some roasted bitterness and hoppiness.

Overall, i can see why this is ranked by many as the top year-round RIS. Complex, drinkable, interesting, well balanced brew. Hats off to Palais Imports for bringing this to Australia.

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Photo of MagicLantern
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a Pint Glass.

A: Four fingers of head! Thick creamy tan head that faded over several minutes. 1/2" of lace coats thick and evenly across the glass. As drank, lace continued to coat glass. Half way through beer, lace continued to cling to top of the glass and coat the entire glass all they way down. A Bback beer held up to the light, this had the *slightest* red translucence. This was a fantastic looking beer.

S: Notes are sparse here. "Malty? Spices." That's all I wrote. It was pleasant, but nothing that merits more detail.

T: Smooth and creamy. Chocolate over coffee flavors. Moderately chocolatey with a sharp coffeesque bitter finish accented by a slight tase of spices. Alchohol is well hidden by coffee like flavors.

M: Light carbonation tingles and smooths the beer. Incredibly well balanced. The bitter after taste is slight

D: The combination of pleasant flavors and great mouthfeel combine to make this a very well balanced beer. This makes the beer very easy to drink. I don't typically think of stouts as a casual beer, but this one is a great reminder of how pleasant a dark beer can be.

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Photo of geofort78
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Tottaly black beer with a thick tan head. Smell is toasted malt and coffe. Full body. A little sweet at first, followed for toast and coffe. Alcohol present at the end. Persistent aftertaste of coffe. Very nice beer and good drinkability.

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Photo of Murph
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Man, I really love Imperial Stouts and this is a real good one. It is real dark with only the slightest hint of light getting through but kind of a thinish head. For some reason I couldn't get a whole lot of aroma. What I do get is dark chocolate and roasted malts with a slight hop undertone. A different taste for an imperial stout but not one that I am necessarily against. Huge amounts or dark chocolate and roasted malts start on the tongue. This is then followed a nice cascade hop flavor. The bitterness of the hops is nicely balanced with the sweetness of the chocolate and a faint dark fruit presence. I can't find even the slightest hint of alcohol. The mouthfeel is creamy and a bit tangy which leaves me wanting more of it. I would have to say that the hops balance to the huge body of this beer makes it exceptionally drinkable. This is one kick ass beer. One of these days I am going to have to make a pilgrimage to California to see all these amazing breweries in person.

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Photo of IAmNinjor
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

In a word, this beer is very very full. The taste, mouthfeel, color, alcohol - all very full.

I liked the pour a lot, and the color of the head against the almost black liquid made the bubbles sparkle against the glass after every drink.

The smell wasn't very strong, but was good.

The taste was great. Very rich and solid. You could taste the alcohol, but not in a bad way. This was really an ideal beer to take slow and enjoy on a cold day.

Overall a very good beer, but not for the faint of heart. Here's a full review:


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Photo of scottoale
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Fresh on nitro and served in a pint glass...WOW, a beautiful imperial stout of black-ass brown with incredibly thick and creamy, cocoa butter lace. The 1" thick head forms after a beautiful cascading display occurs, the kind that only nitrogen carbonation is capable of...buttercream froth. Fat, juicy rings of the stuff mark each sip of this fine looking brew.

Burnt and roasty dark malt smell is bluntly bitter and comprised of dark, black French Roast coffee and a heap of baker's chocolate...breakfast or dessert anyone?

The intake of a very short lasting sweetness is anise or black licorice if you will, followed by instant roast bitterness...an awesome tasty dark malt that is mostly black French Roast coffee (nearly espresso) with heavy bitter chocolate notes...rich and roasty to the finish. Very tasty I.S. with a smooth and creamy big body, accompanied by a well hidden, high dose of you guessed it...alcohol.

Great appearance, good smelling, excellent taste and mouthfeel lead up to an imperial stout that is all too drinkable...especially when on tap and charged with nitrogen...love this stuff!

 1,118 characters

Photo of Tatara
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of drtth
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours out into an Imperial Pint glass a totally black liquid with a 1" head that leaves lots of lacing as it slowly recedes to a thin layer of foam on the liquid. Sipping creates interesting patterns of lacing.

The aromas include the roasted malt, some chocolate and coffee.

The flavors are strong and intense with the chocolate and coffee. There's also a lot of dark roasted malt mingled with both a light touch of sweetness from the malt and bitterness that seems almost as much from the roasted malt as from the hops. Towards the end of the finish there's still some chocolate and some hop bitterness.

The mouthfeel is on the full side of medium bodied and a bit creamy with the moderate carbonation.

Definitely a drinkable beer, especially for one this full of intense flavors. I could easily have another and will be revisiting this beer. Excellent and well made Imperial Stout.

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Photo of Dithyramb
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The evil monk was sampled on tap in a proleterian pint glass in Frisco's in Columbia. Poured an opaque black, like the heart of the wicked one. Like the Neva River itself, it was impassable to the light of day. A thick, lucious dark tan head and excellent retention/lacing stealthily masked the high ABV.

Aroma was mostly of bitter roasted malts, with just a bit of sweetness in the background. Interesting, it was just as complex served slightly chilled on tap as it was cellar temperature at home. Cream and sugar laden roasted coffee was followed by bitter chocolates. Toffee in the middle was literally beat down with some ashy coffee grounds onthe finish. Hefty, strong, memorable.

Bitter and acidic at times, it still finished like a nicely done cream and sugar coffee. Smoother than one would expect, and very drinkable.

Overall: Razzy was drugged, poisoned, beaten and shot, but only died after being wrapped in a carpet and thrown in the river. He grew from a womanizing peasant thief to a “holy man” helping the czar’s family with both the needs of a hemophilic son and the decisions for war with Austria. This is a beer that weirdly does it's namesake proud.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ever heard the disco/metal song "Rasputin" by Finish "battle metal" band Turisas?--that's what I'm thinking about. Opaque black with a muddy brown head. Weak retention for a stout.

Intense roast malt with merlot dark fruit, iced coffee and brown sugar. Ditto for the taste. You can sense the alcoholic presence by the ridiculously roasty and bold coverup. Nevertheless, it stays hidden so well.

Nice big stout without being fancy.

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Photo of aaronyoung01
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Straycorn
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Bigdoc91
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Biscuit033
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Thick and black with a 3+ finger light brown head, and great lacing.

S: Hops are very noticable up front: Pine and earth, some roasted notes and a bit of chocolate.

T: Earthy hops, espresso, very dark bitter chocolate, and alcohol at the end.

M: Full, rich, smooth, and bitter.

D: This a great example of the style. I am definately enjoying this as dessert.

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Photo of shanblur
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Have had this before, but recently bought a 4 pack so a figured I would add a review. Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a snifter.

A - Can't imagine a better looking beer. Dark black with a fluffly tan head which lingers and eventually fades into islands of foam with plenty of patterend lacing.

S - Dark roasted malt smell with sweet malts with some chocolate and coffee notes

T - Dark and rich chocolate and roasted malt flavor with hints of coffee. A nice warm alcohol finish.

M - Dense, with a lingering carbonation

A Great example of why this is my favorite style of beer. Excellent when paired with the right food, but also a spectacular brew by itself. Will enjoy many more over the coming years. Glad this is available locally for only 8.99 a four pack.

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Photo of Casey_L
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Bulabeers
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of brianjay
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a syrupy body, pitch black in color and the head (which was light brown and thin) all but disappears quickly. There is a reminiscence of it in the form of a ring around the glass.

A baker's chocolate and [toasted grain or baked pie crust] smell. Overall, the aroma provides little insight into that this brew has to offer.

The taste, the most important part, is out of this world. Chocolate cake mixed with roasted dark meat. The high alcohol presence comes off as an afterthought, a nice wake up from the dessert-like nature of the beer.

Can't recommend this one enough for someone who wants a late night treat.

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Photo of imagese
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pulled a cellared bottle that was purchased 06/09

Poured into IRS snifter

A- medium pour produced a fluffy 3 finger creamy coffee colored head that sat on top of the dark dark ruby colored brew. The head faded slowly, hung around as a thin patch, and laced like a champ

S- semi sweet chocolate, coffee, liquorice, and roasted dark fruit. Aging appears to muddle the scent of this amazing beer a bit, but still nice

T- heavy dark plum dipped in chocolate followed by coffee bitterness, heavy roasted malt, and a slight boozy burn

M- carbonation is still present, and the full bodied roasty goodness is still kickin'

D- If I didn't want to age the others longer, I'd keep 'em coming!!!

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Photo of Pintofbrown
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

App- The head rages to a four fingered, chocolate monster. It refuses to die after several minutes, leaving circles of soapy lace. The body is an opaque dark brown with no highlights. It is beautiful.

Smell- There is brandy, roasted malt, dark chocolate and some anise. Obviously some coffee roast in there as well. The alcohol heat might be a little too pronounced, but it is still pretty impressive.

Taste- Awesome roasted malt and sweet alcohol flavor morphs into a toffee mid sip. The finish is a dark chocolate, hard roasted coffee and char that really sticks. Really good.

Mouth feel- Smooth drink that is a little dry from the coffee roast. It is a little warm but not overpowering. It is full bodied and fits the beer very well.

Overall- I really enjoy this RIS. It is a brew that everyone should try it once. It's very well brewed with not many surprises, but you know exactly what you are going to get every time.

 927 characters

Photo of LJTate
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of cgskippy
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of muchos
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of churchillps
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a 12oz bottle. Black as night, tan head that lingers forever. Thick and creamy. Smells and tastes of espresso, dark malts, chocolate, and some subtle hops. Pretty dry, thick and creamy. Definitely not for the faint of heart. Paid $2.50 for this sucker and would gladly pay again. Great for the winter time, but I could do this in the summer too!

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Photo of bryangb
4.41/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle. Aggressive pour gives a beautiful creamy head. Smell: Roasty, chocolate, coffee, malt. Not very boozy smelling but it's there. Taste: You can taste it before it even touches your mouth. Much like you'd expect from the smell. Roasted malt, coffee, chocolate up front. The booze comes in towards the end. The alcohol burn left behind is just right. It's rated up there with one of my favorite stouts.

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Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.3 out of 5 with 12,279 ratings
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