Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout | North Coast Brewing Co.

BA SCORE
95
world-class
3,677 Reviews
Old Rasputin Russian Imperial StoutOld Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout
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:
No notes at this time.

Added by kbub6f on 01-18-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
3,677
Ratings:
12,044
Avg:
4.28
pDev:
10.28%
 
 
Wants:
585
Gots:
2,926
For Trade:
53
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User Reviews
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Reviews: 3,677 | Ratings: 12,044
Photo of cokes
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

It pours a black body with just the faintest hints of scarlet on the edge. Curiously transparent when held to light. Shifts towards ruby. Head is light tan and relatively thin.
Mocha nose with amaretto, port, earth and powerful cascades.
Taste is all over the map. Big time bitterness from the roasted coffee/dark chocolate, as well as from the hops (cascades). This is counteracted by some pronounced sweetness in the form of more (milk) chocolate, black grapes, hazelnut and evident alcohol, in the form of vanilla liqueur. Nicely roasty and vinous up front, but it lacks "stick", as the flavors seem to drop out quickly. Espresso notes linger, acridly, post-swallow joining with the chewed pill hop notations.
Pretty thin for an Imperial. Over carbonated too.
Nevertheless, this has quite a bit going for it, and it's quite a fascinating drinking experience in the fattened porter realm. It hasn't the depth nor the body to qualify as an elite Imperial Stout.
Price-wise, though, this hits the spot, and its widespread availability is a bonus.

 1,050 characters

Photo of ThomasMetal75
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A- Dark black. Very small red huge showing through the glass. Big, thick head that recedes to a nice soapy consistency. It sticks around during the duration of the beer. Decent amount of lacing thanks to the 9% ABV.

S- Burnt dark chocolate & alcohol.

T- Same as smell. The alcohol creates a warming effect in the finish. This doesn't taste like sweet molasses or syrup, so that is a plus in my book. This beer is a lot smoother than most imperial stouts I've had. It starts of semi-dry to my taste-buds, then moves to a sweetness that is very well balanced with the rest of the beer's flavors.

M- Medium, but more towards full bodied. The finish makes the beer feel like it's stuck to the roof of your mouth and spreads to the back of the throat. The mouthfeel is what creates the warming sensation.

Overall, Old Rasputin has everything that a standard imperial stout has, but is smoother. It's less alcoholic than most in it's style, which makes it more enjoyable. It also doesn't have an extremely heavy molasses or sugary sweet syrup taste, so that's what I like about it. No where near my favorite beer, but it's damn tasty.

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Photo of Tyrawlings
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. Bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Opaque black in color. Fluffy two fingered tan head stays for most of the serving. Nice sticky lacing crawls all over the glass.

S: Coffee and chocolate. Sweet sugars. Bread. Warming alcohol.

T: Taste is upfront roasted coffee and bitter chocolate. Dark fruits and a perfect balance of caramel malts. More roasted coffe is finished off with a warming alcohol burn.

M: Thick and creamy. Minimal carbonation. Slighty dry.

D: Dangerously drinkable for the high alcohol content. A very nice crisp and clean Imperial Stout. Recommended.

 589 characters

Photo of bifrojm
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into imperial pint glass. Pours a beautiful thick dark brown (midnight brown?) with a nice dark caramel head that holds up for the duration.

Nice aromas of chocolate, malt, vanilla, a touch of coffee. Good smelling beer.

Tastes lovely with most of the aromas coming through on the palette, with the addition of some bourbon.

Mouthfeel is creamy with a touch of carbonation.

Drinkability is a tad low. I like this beer a lot but I don't need or want a lot of it. One is enough for sure.

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Photo of chilly460
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Opaque black with red/brown highlights at the edge of the glass. Nice medium brown head dissipates to a thick film, leaves a nice lace.

N- Very heavy dark chocolate, espresso, cocoa powder, some deep raisin or licorice, and heavy bread yeast notes.

T- Similar to the aroma, lots of dark chocolate and sharp coffee. Heavy molasses and malts. Liked this quite a bit, it's right on the edge of bitterness I like in an RIS, but not over the edge. Gets very warm with alcohol as it warms up, a complex beer.

M- This is a smooth thick beer, tight fluffy head, very nice feel to it.

D- Love the fact that you can get this beer anywhere, and at an affordable price. I'm a little wimpy when it comes to heavy roasted malts, this is on the border but was very easy drinking for me.

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Photo of LazyL
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

When in California..why not drink from the tap of goodness as much as possible.
Black with a nice mocha creamy foam. The nose is all stout, coffee, cola, molasses. The taste is not quite up to the nose but has a nice roasty malt and espresso flavour. There is a slightly sour note and its creamy, dry and has a smokey charred finish. This is a decent stout but there is no way that this is 9%. The ABV is very well hidden.

 423 characters

Photo of CaptYellow
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Half the glass was head. A fluffy one.

T: Sweet. Almost nutty. Quintessential RIS.

M: Chewy.

D: A bit heavy to be highly drinkable.

O: Worth the price? Yes. I think a four pack was $9. Recommend? Yes. Search out? Maybe not, but a pick-up-while-it's-there beer. Buy again? I'm sure.

 288 characters

Photo of rawla
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

4 pack from Bevmo in West Hollywood, Ca. No freshness date.

Poured into a snifter. I've had this beer a couple of times over the years, but I figured it was time to give it a proper review.

A: Dark as night, with a thick, creamy head. ( no innuendo intended). Alot of carbonation from the bottom of the bottle, which I think may have affected my tasting score. ALOT of lacing to the sides of the glass.

S: Toasted acorn, some coffee, and subtle chocolate notes. There is a stronger presence of roasted sugar/caramel than chocolate or coffee in my opinion. Alcohol is present.

T: Massive cocoa and toasted caramel notes at the front. A bitter and boozy bite towards the end of the taste. Some coffee notes linger around, but this is a chocolate milkshake on steroids for sure. I have had this on tap, and know how rich and velvety this things can get under the BEST conditions. But, I am not completely BLOWN away in bottle form.

M: Chocolate milk feel in the mouth.

O: A good stout to have on a cold night. 9% ABV and the price per bottle(1.99/per in a 4 pack) make this an incredibly good deal for such a highly alcoholic, and well made beer. A

 1,154 characters

Photo of FirstMan
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

I've had this beer in lots of different ways - on tap, in bottle, and most recently, on nitro tap. This is a very different beer in those three modes, I think. Bottle I would rate the worst, then normal tap, then nitro-tap. Thus, I'm reviewing the nitro-tap version here:

A: Black like black. Black black black. Like black, blackly. Blackiest blackity black. Head is light cocoa. Very distinct difference between the head the liquid once the nitro pour settles given the color of said liquid, which is, how to say... black.

S: Distinct hop presence in the nose, but not nearly as prevalent in the nitro pour as in the normal tap version. Non-nitro, I remember being a little scared of this one upon smelling because there were wicked strong hop and roasted chocolate notes. Almost cindery notes. These are there in the nitro pour, but not nearly as ... loudly.

T: This beer does not mess around. It will hunt you down in the dead cold of winter, shoot you, and dump you in the river, standing there while you slip under the ice. It will then go and make love to your sister. It will remain unshaven through all that. That said, on nitro, it will shave. It will also perhaps give you a nice fur hat to wear before all that. Huge biting hop bitterness and full roasted, smokey malt with big coffee and chocolate tongue anvils.

M: On nitro, surprisingly creamy and full given my experience with this being a dryer, more abrupt beer when on tap normally.

D: It's probably just me, but I can't really drink more than one of these at a sitting. I could, but it's just a bit much.

Overall a delicious beer and one of the better Imperial Stouts out there, imho, but the style is not of great drinkability to me.

 1,712 characters

Photo of PZuke
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A nice black Imperial stout body with a slightly tan head. It smelled like coffee and a little bit of chocolate. The taste was very smooth with light carbonation and a very heavy taste of coffee/espresso and a little bit of chocolate. I could see how the coffee taste could be overpowering for some. I’m not a huge stout fan but I could actually drink a couple of these and have no problem. A brew that even Rasputin himself could be proud of.

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Photo of choyhosoi
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This one pours dark as night and leaves a nice creamy head. The smell is very intoxicating hints of fruit, chocolate, and coffee. The taste was smooth but stayed on the top of my mouth with a bit of bitterness. After a couple of more drinks this one got a little more tamer as far as bitterness is concerned. I would not recommend this if you do not like strong stout beers this one wont be for you.

 399 characters

Photo of thegodfather2701
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured this into a snifter and it had a thick tan head. It smells strong of espresso and dark chocolate. It tastes just like it smells, strong espresso and dark chocolate. There is a hint of alcohol as it warms the back of the throat. This beer is thick and creamy almost like a meal in of itself. One of the most robust stouts I have tried to date.

 349 characters

Photo of brdc
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured this small capped bottle into a snifter.

Dark, but not pitch black, this one has an occasional dark red highlight going through the darkness. It has a creammy, light brown head with average retention and some lacing.
aves a bit to be desired as well.
Nice aroma of dark chocolate, some fruity hoppiness and coffee opens way to a full-bodied brew, with bittersweet chocolate, unsweetened and at times burnt coffee and a bitter, dry hoppy finish.
Nice, but the aftertaste is slightly unbalanced, dry and hoppy, at least for me.

 537 characters

Photo of bylerteck
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pot at Terminus. From notes.

A - Poured black with a khaki one finger heat. Good rings of lace and a film of retention.

S - Coffee seemed strong with lot's of chocolate. Simple but enjoyable.

T - Chocolate, booze, chocolate covered coffee beans. layers of chocolate and roastiness.

M - Really smooth, mild carbonation and a medium to full body.

O/D - Nice but lacking depth. Don't get me wrong though, this was a good Impy Stout and really easy to drink. Just left me wanting more as I felt like it had the potential for greatness.

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Photo of BeerResearcher
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This Russian Imperial Stout is dark/rich tar in color with a nice tan head. The lace cascades down in spotty trails. The aroma is a multi-directional bombardment of coffee mocha, malt, hops and alcohol. The ample citrus and metallic hops are almost overwhelming. A hint of apples and sherry-like flavors weave in and out as does coffee & chocolate. Sweet! Strongly alcoholic and complex. Almost too much at once with little thought to balance...maybe that was the intention to begin with?

 488 characters

Photo of Chelsea1905
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poued very dark, was in a dark pub when I tried it, but almost no light breaking through this dark mahogany beauty. Think white-brown head, that left substantial lacing

Smelled like a stout, chocolate and malts, but a sliht hoppy-citrus note in there too

Hops and floral mixture, which was really suprising, then the malt and chocolate hit after.

Heavy, full meal-like mouthfeel.

Drank a couple and that was good enough. A little too heavy for a session beer, but nice for just a couple

 490 characters

Photo of ale1
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

quaffed a few of these last month and support the previous reviews ..quite good,,,
so if your'e out perousing the local ale outlet and stumble acros this fine ale buy it ..buy it now you''ll enjoy this ale...doggone text counters its all good,,mmm...

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Photo of Rangerator
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer has a lot of hype, with having such a large following I had to cave in and try it. Poured into a snifter from a bottle, beautiful black body with a stunning imperial stout head. First sip..boom lots of carbination almost too much almost burned my mouth, I didnt like that so I let it sit for a few minutes to warm up and still too much carbination which I did not enjoy at all kind of killed it for me. Good beer just too much carb definitely a lot of other Imperials out there that are better. Check out Moylans Imperial its a lot more satisfying.

 558 characters

Photo of BierReise
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

When I first opened the bottle I took a little sniff. My first impression was chocolate and alcohol. Almost like a chocolate cordial. Dark chocolatey appearance small head that started to dissolve immediately. First sip was roasty tasting with bitter chocolate notes at the back. Wow this is a smooth Stout. A little on the bitter side but malt is seeming to wrestle for advantage. It's warming up now and I start to smell coffee or espresso. This is a great stout and deserving of it's wide praise. If it weren't for the bitterness I'd give it an even higher rating. Just my opinion.

 584 characters

Photo of optiontwo
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz. poured into tulip glass

Appearance: Pours extremely dark with no transparency and a generous amount (about two inches) of tan head.

Smell: Reminds me of a standard RIS but smokier. Dark chocolate, coffee, and maybe a little tobacco detected.

Taste: Good stuff but I can't believe this isn't a smoked stout. All the flavors (chocolate, nut, coffee) are all backed by a strong smokiness. Not to say that's a bad thing, it's nice actually, I'm just surprised.

Mouthfeel: Good. Nice amount of carbonation, not too overpoweringly thick.

Drinkability: This brew is actually lighter than I expected so that ups the drinkability slightly, but it's 9% so it's not like you're going to be drinking this one all night.

Overall: I enjoyed this brew. It has a very solid flavor to it and is relatively easy to drink. Personally I enjoy a little more dark fruit flavor to my imperial stouts but that by no means is to say I don't like Old Rasputin. I understand why this is such a highly rated beer. I will be picking this one up again.

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Photo of craytonic
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Deep black with ruby highlights, decent head

Smell: Chocolate, fudge, roasted malt, coffee

Taste: Roasted black malt, chocolate, coffee, licorice, plums

Mouthfeel: Bit chewy, but nothing like those who dominate the style, a bit sweet and sticky

Drinkability: average for the style

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Photo of ragekage23
3.89/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a- deep brown with a nice light brown fluffy head

s- toasted malts, coffee

t/m- very unexpectedly bitter, light hops, plum is apparent, fueled by the toasted malts and strong coffee, paired with a not-too-strong carbonation

d- great example of what makes a RIS so tasty

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Photo of OldManMetal
3.89/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This is a beautiful beer: a long-lived gigantic pebbly tan head that leaves extensive, complex lacing on a pitch-black body with sullen ruby highlights. The nose is subdued roasted malt- molasses and toffee- faintly sweet with alcohol undertones. The palate is alcohol and bitter roasted malt- mostly molasses and bitter, bitter chocolate- with the alcohol notes gaining traction towards the back of the palate. The finish is a flash of chocolate followed by a beer-defining roasted bitterness that lingers forever. Mouthfeel is a bit thinnish for the full body, but creamy and warming, and peppery from some very fizzy carbonation.

 632 characters

Photo of radioscooter
3.89/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Blacker than the blackest night in the glass. A semi-soft pour garners an astounding 4 finger head that isn't going anywhere 3 minutes later. You could float a toy boat on top.

Aroma is less present, I smell the coffee and the Earth, and a few bitter hops. A little musty actually. Not much else. And not strongly even when snuffling big.

Taste is subdued, like the aroma. Good, not my favorite taste but very good. Coffee for sure, some dark roasty chocolate, there's a malt squeezing in there somewhere but very subtly blended. No overthrows of flavor on either end, which I assume is a good thing. Me, I'm looking for sweeter, but with this RIPA - I understand.

Booze is well hidden, but creeps up on you.

The mouthfeel is great, but dry and leaves a bit of a secondary hops taste as it departs. Good for some, not for me. Still - I understand.

Very respectable. It would get higher marks form me but the mustiness is a little off-putting.

 948 characters

Photo of BryanForrestKim
3.89/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on-tap.

A: The head blooms beautifully and lingers resiliently–it seems to stick to the sides of the glass as if it were starch. Pitch dark brown with only a glimmer of dark red when held up to light.

S: Very strong–almost smells somewhere in between a 75%-100% Dark Chocolate. Hops aromas barely shine through.

T: Complex. Flavors include the Crema of a Ristretto Espresso Shot; Dark, Dark Chocolate; and fresh cream. Ends with some sweet hops.

M: Nice, but on the boundary between "rich" and "sticky"

 525 characters

Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
4.28 out of 5 based on 12,044 ratings.
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