Old Rasputin | North Coast Brewing Co.

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Old RasputinOld Rasputin
BA SCORE
4.3/5
Outstanding
12,453 Ratings
Old RasputinOld Rasputin
BEER INFO

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

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

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#540
Reviews:
3,771
Ratings:
12,453
pDev:
10.23%
Bros Score:
4.38
 
 
Wants:
624
Gots:
3,181
Trade:
49
HISTOGRAM
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 12,453 |  Reviews: 3,771
Photo of superspak
4.36/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into snifter, bottled 6/3/2011. Been a while since I first rated this one(9/2010). Pours almost pitch black color with some brown around the edges with an impressive 2 finger dense tan head with incredible retention that reduces to a thick cap that lasts. Some very nice soapy lacing on the glass. Aromas of big dark chocolate, roasted malt, coffee, pine, herbal hop, caramel, biscuit, molasses, and slight dark fruit. Nice and well balanced aromas with good complexity and strength. Taste of big dark chocolate, roasted malt, pine, biscuit, caramel, coffee, molasses, toffee, herbal hop, charred malt, and slight citrus. Nice sized spicy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark chocolate, charred malt, pine, herbal hops, and caramel and the finish for a while. Nice balance of hop flavors with roasted malt flavors. Medium carbonation and fairly full bodied; with a creamy and slightly slick mouthfeel. Quite smooth to drink, but is still definitely a sipper. Alcohol is well hidden with only a warming after the finish. Overall this is a fantastic Russian imperial stout, and an absolute classic in the style. Very robust and smooth; and extremely enjoyable to sip on.

 1,202 characters

Photo of brentk56
4.13/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearnace: Tar black with a bit of ruby peeking through when put in front of a light source; a modest head that webs the glass with lacing

Smell: Roasted malt, chocolate and espresso

Taste: The flavor explodes in your mouth - at first you get the coffee and chocolate and then, after the swallow, the bitter hops kick in along with the alcohol; after the warmth and the bitterness fades, the chocolate tones linger and comfort

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: A lovely, warming stout for the cold weather months; a big beer and not for the faint-hearted

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.82/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a dark black colored beer with almost no head. Aroma is comprised of a strong chocolate and coffee mix. The chocolate and coffee also hits you right at the first sip along with some roastiness. A bit too much bitterness at the end for my liking though. Carbonation is bit weak and body is strong which was expected. Overall, this is a very good drink but maybe not as much as some make it out to be…

 415 characters

Photo of Boone757
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of Kurmaraja
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of LXIXME
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thick very long lasting light brown head covers a clean and clear dark brown to black colored beer.

Aroma is on the lighter side with well roasted to almost burnt grain malts and some chocolates.

A full well roasted grain malt taste with lots of dark chocolates coming through.

Slightly dry aftertaste with some of the dark malts and chocolates tastes lingering behind with this full bodied drink.

Very well done, was lucky enough to enjoy this in front of the fireplace on chilly night.

 495 characters

Photo of SocalKicks
4/5  rDev -7%

Photo of mothman
3.95/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into Matilda Glass

Pours ½ finger of dark tan head. Fades down to a thin layer leaving some lace rings. Color is a dark chocolate brown, pretty much black.

Aroma: Chocolate malts, coffee, some heat, dark dried fruits, molasses. Burnt, roasted malts. A very well done RIS.

Taste: Very syrupy, chocolate malts, roasted malts, coffee, dark dried fruits, cherries. Too syrupy for me.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, creamy, and syrupy. Full bodied with a decent amount of carbonation. Ends with a burnt roasted malt aftertaste.

Overall, this is a pretty good beer, but I have had far better RIS. This one seems to be a syrupy mess. I will easily get this again because it is decent and the price is low.

 703 characters

Photo of dbrauneis
4.23/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours an opaque jet black in color. The beer has a three finger tall creamy dark tan head that is dense and made up of very large bubbles. The head reduces slowly to a half finger tall, covering the entire surface of the beer with a slightly thicker patch in the center as well as a thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate lacing is observed.

S: Fairly strong aromas of dark roasted malts along with lighter notes of chocolate, coffee, and some very light hints of dark fruits.

T: There are strong flavors of dark roasted malts along with some moderate notes of bittersweet chocolate. There is a moderate amount of bitterness in the flavor of this beer along with significant notes of freshly ground coffee bean in the finish.

M: Medium to full bodied with light to moderate amounts of carbonation. Creamy with some dryness in the finish. There are light amounts of alcohol warming.

O: This beer is very enjoyable and has really nice complexity in both the smell and the taste. The higher ABV is pretty well hidden in the smell and taste but lightly present in the mouthfeel as the beer warms. It has been a couple of years since I have had this beer but it definitely lived up to my memories. I will happily have this one again.

 1,245 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.42/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Old Rasputin is not as dark as many other Imperial stouts, with luminous dark mahogany highlights beneath its creamy yellowed-tan head. And it's head retention leaves a bit to be desired as well. It does leave some thin lace, however, which is nice. And what it lacks in appearance it makes up for in aroma. It's slightly vinous with some yeasty fruitiness coming through the maltiness, followed by a touch of dark chocolate, espresso, and a waft of hops. It's quite slick, and a touch creamy, across the palate with a full body and a restrained, natural carbonation. The yeasty fruitiness carries through into the flavor with notes of prunes, plums, and berries; all backed by a massive assult of malt that offers espresso, burnt black coffee, dark caramel, and the suggestion of molasses as well as a pinch of brown sugar. It finishes with some resinous hops and a drip of black licorice before fading into a long, very dry finish. Quite nice!

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Photo of largadeer
4.34/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Nitro-tap, served in a tulip glass.

Appearance: Pitch-black with a huge, dense and frothy nitro head.

Smell: Dark chocolate and burnt grains.

Taste & mouthfeel: Unbelievably rich and creamy. Baker's chocolate, espresso, toast and chocolate pudding. Hops are very much present in the finish, providing a balancing bitterness.

Drinkability: Not necessarily sessionable, but as close as I've found in an imperial stout. Despite the high ABV, this is incredibly smooth and drinkable.

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Photo of jlindros
4.75/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Armsby Abbey

A: Big thick and slow fading head dark almost black with touch of molases color

N: Nose has lots of chocolate and oatmeal and touch of alcohol

T: Taste is very complex and starts with thick dark chocolate and slight oats with a strong alcohol, some sweet caramel and touch of dark fruit like fig, a slight chalkiness cuts through as well but is followed with a slight creamy banana

M: Mouth is very thick and creamy and coats the whole mouth

F: Finish has a nice hop character, it finishes slightly sweet like molases, a touch of spice, and more alcohol, stout, and chocolate linger for a while

Final thoughts: This is one, if not the most, favorite stout of mine. I love how rich, thick and dark it is. Some hop character and chocolate as well as fruits like fig and banana. It's really complex, an experience in itself.

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Photo of Gagnonsux
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

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

12 oz bottle served in a pint glass.

The well-sized dark tan head was about as dense and lovely as could be short of a nitro-can or nitro-tap. The liquid appears black with just tiny glimpses of brown at the edges when backlit. The head has excellent durability and leaves lots of light brown lacing.

Rather aromatic for a stout, with an easily detectable hop note over a rich dark malt aroma. The high ABV becomes more evident as the beer warms, but remains partially hidden. This high ABV is exceptionally well hidden in the taste and feel, however. The rich flavor, mainly from dark roasted malt, certainly contributes to the masking of alcohol flavors. There are dark chocolate and, less obvious, coffee notes in the finish. Almost no charred (burnt) taste components. Perfect sweet/bitter balance.

M - Exceptional mouthfeel, with a body that is nicely full for style, a creamy smooth texture, only the slightest alcohol tingle, and a modicum of lively tongue feel from the perfect carbonation.

O - What an excellent balance of hops and dark roasted malt, in this lively RIS! Delicious.

 1,098 characters

Photo of zestar
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of vfgccp
4.58/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

-Nitro tap-

A – Ridiculous, tempurpedic-pillow of a head stuck around at 2 inches high for almost 15 minutes till the glass was empty. Great lace. Almost pitch black body.

S – Malty with a deep pumpernickel breadiness, a touch of milk chocolate, and a tang of bitter roast.

T – Dark chocolate into a dark bready malt. A nice, solid woody bitter ramps up to balance the profile in the center. Full roasty finish with lingering sweet cream and molasses.

M – The pillow of foam lends a fantastic creaminess to the mouthfeel. Medium-full body starts a bit lighter than you’d expect, but quickly fills out to end rich and smooth.

O – Delicious, big, complex, and well balanced. Could use a shade more integration between the flavors, but this is still one the best beers I’ve ever had on tap.

 806 characters

Photo of paulish
4.75/5  rDev +10.5%

Photo of Ciocanelu
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Gkruszewski
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%

Photo of smithj4
4.28/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Photo of oberon
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I have to say this is the best imperial stout I have had so far,pours a deep borwn but not quite black with a light almond colored head,aroma is burnt with some rasin notes.The taste is a bombshell very buttery and rum-like with some light earthy tones,love the butteriness of this beer along with the rum flavor.A real complex brew that is pretty easy to drink for the alcohol content,what a real nice beer.

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Photo of nickfl
4.53/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Opaque black body with a large, thick and creamy khaki colored head that possesses exceptional staying power.

S - Spicy, velvety aroma of hops combined with dark, chocolate malt. Slight floral notes and a bit of coffee and caramel.

T - Begins with smooth, mouth coating hop bitterness, quickly followed by roasted malt flavors of coffee, charcoal, and roast barley and a nice sweet note right in the middle. Strong dark grain bitterness and moderate alcohol warmth in the finish with lingering notes of dark caramel, smoke, and perhaps a bit of tobacco.

M - Smooth fairly thick body with moderately low carbonation. There is some astringency from the grain and hops, but much less than you might expect.

D - This is a beer to slowly sip and savour as the dark flavors only truly show themselves when the beer begins to warm. It is immensely enjoyable, though I would not want more than one in a sitting. The most remarkable aspect is the long, complex finish; it is reminiscent of a good cigar more than any other beer I have experienced. I had the last of the glass with a few pieces of dark, bittersweet chocolate; it was a nice match and had the interesting effect of bringing the hop character of the beer to the front.

 1,232 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark black color, with a thin tan head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: It has a very rich aroma of dark chocolate and roasted malt.

T: The taste is creamy & malty with flavors of roasted coffee, dark chocolate and caramelized malt. For a beer with 9.00% ABV you sure wouldn't know it. The dark chocolate flavor comes out a little more.

M: Very, very smooth, low-to-medium carbonation, medium-to-heavy body, finish is kind of sticky.

D: Very tasty, quite easy-to-drink, not as filling as other beers in the style, this is a beer that can be a sipper or a pounder, even if the ABV creeps up on you. I think this beer is an excellent representation of style and definitely one of the better RIS's that I've had.

 819 characters

Photo of olradetbalder
4/5  rDev -7%

Photo of jgunther71
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Old Rasputin from North Coast Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.3 out of 5 with 12,453 ratings