Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout | North Coast Brewing Co.

3,701 Reviews
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:
No notes at this time.

Added by kbub6f on 01-18-2001

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Reviews: 3,701 | Ratings: 12,126
Photo of estlinska
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served on Nitro at The Pantry on 4/23/13. Poured into a standard shaker :(. Pours black as coal with nice big creamy khaki colored head. No light can escape this black hole of a beer. It leaves reams of thick creamy head on the glass with some light lacing as well. The nitro gives this beer a more evened out nose but also pulls away from some of the aromatics. It still smells great with a smoky coffee and fresh baked chocolate chip cookie. There is a hint of alcohol on the nose but not overwhelming. The taste is very nice. I love what a nitro does to a good stout. The beer is slightly sweet with some bitter malt flavor melding well with some well placed hop bitterness that takes a slightly woody taste. The mouthfeel is creamy and full bodied. Very slight alcohol burn. I really like this beer and I think the nitro is a different experience for an already world class beer.

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Photo of Lexiconical
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

You want complexity? This beer has astonishing complexity. Gave as a gift to my father, a wine drinker, and it aced the test. It has different tastes at different moments, like a great wine.

That said, I have not had other Russian Imperial Stouts, so what I liked about it might just be trait of the style.

Astonishing molasses color and thickness. Smell not up to the rest of the beer.

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Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A- Opaque black liquid with a big, frothy, tan head

S- Lots of roasted barley reminds me of coffee. Some complexity arises with dark fruits and hints of alcohol

T- Delicious mix of sweet malt, bitter hop, and tart yeast/alcohol characteristics. I can't find anything wrong with this beer. Perhaps it is too tasty

M- A mouth-full of chewy, full-bodied goodness

D- Drinkable enough to pair with dinner and filling enough to solo as dessert

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Photo of aerozeppl
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had this on nitro tap at the Lionheart in Albany. $3

A: Black. It was sunny outside and still no light got in. The nitro yielded two luscious fingers of off white head. Just about perfect.

S: Tons of chocolate and roasted malt. Little bit of sweetness and just enough of a hint of booze to let you know it is serious.

T: Wow. I have had this before but never on tap. The chocolate really pops out in front of everything else. The roast is there but not as prevelent as it is in the bottle.

M: Beyond sex. Super creamy. Oh man was this awesome.

D: Damn this was good. I am going to go back again this week for more. Yes I can stop whenever I want. Glad I got a small one though. The drinkability was off the charts and I would not be able to restrain myself. Thank god they had liquid gold from capt lawrence to ween me off this.

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Photo of sanjosey19
4.56/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Oh so smooth. Pours nice and thick with a caramel colored head that dissipates fast. Smells like you would expect it to, roasted malts, coffee and chocolate. Mouthfeel is great, so nice and smooth, not too carbonated. Some alcohol taste present, but still very drinkable. Overall, this tastes like a very good RIS, but the quality lies in how well is drinks. One of my favorites. I got to go to the brewery in Fort Bragg CA, and had four of these with dinner...amazing.

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Photo of davidfcr1
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Beer is very dark with a relatively thick consistency. Smell is pleasant, although you can get a sense of the high alcohol level. Very unique taste, just the right amount of richness if one likes stout beers. Light enough not to be overwhelming, yet it still achieves an abundant feel while drinking it.

The is my favorite imperial stout and I have tried every other one I can get my hands on, but nothing comes close to Old Rasputin.

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Photo of tjsdomer2
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Dark black with heavy and thick tan foam. Overall this is a good look. Very thick.

Smell: Chocolate and strong fruit, almost like figs. A bit spiced as well. Great smell.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Thick, heavy chocolate syrup. More figs, and maybe even some sour cherries as well. A balanced taste that I really like.

Drinkability: I finished this a lot faster than anticipated. It's a sipper that you can't stop drinking.

Overall: An awesome beer.

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Photo of Gusler
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours as "Dark as the inside of a cow", monumental and frothy chocolate head with tons of lace. The nose simply reeks of toasted grains, chocolate, and caramel. Big sweet malt start, top "Don't get any fuller than this", finish is hop spicy, minimal acidity, droughty chocolate malt aftertaste. Just cannot remember having a better "Imperial than this". A must try for all "Lovers of the Dark side", and if your a "Stout" lover, "Baby your ship just came in".

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Photo of NateDyk47
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Bought a single 12oz bottle, drank from a snifter.

Look: pours a black color with a couple fingers tan head, dissipating quickly into a thin lacing
Smell: roasted malt, chocolate, roasted espresso
Taste: similar to the smell, creamier than I had expected. Delicious dark chocolate aftertaste.
Feel: very smooth, easy to drink. Full bodied & moderately carbonated.

Overall: just an incredible stout. Will definitely seek this beer out again.

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Photo of VaTechHopHead
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Typical RIS black, 1 finger deep brown head, non-transparent

S - Tons of roasted malt, sweet molasses, toasted nuts

T - Light sugar/molasses, coffee, nuts, candied marshmallow, very dry hops at end.

M/D - Heavy body, great carbonation, awesome flavor profile/palate transition. too easy to drink and no alcohol feel/flavor.

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Photo of jjhbrfdds
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours black as coal with a tiny head,smells of coffee and roasted malts a small bite of cocoa,This is a well balanced stout lots of malt and hop character,just the right amount of alcohol on the exhale,easy drinker readily available and fair priced make this a cornerstone in my fridge

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Photo of beerwolf77
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Not much else can be said for this beer. For my own purposes thogh here's what I think. Poured into an imperial pint glass it's dark brown nearly black in color. The head is about 1 inch thick that is tan in color. The aroma is chocolate and coffee. Roast malt with a fresh baked preztle hint to it. The flavor is a delicious blend of coffee and chocolate. Hints of bready malt shine through as well. A moderate hop bite sneaks in at the end. I feel it has a medium body to full body that never feels heavy considering the style. This is one of the most drinkable RIS I've ever had. It's not cloyingly sweet or thick and syrupy like this style tends to lean towards. I could see downing a few of these. Although the higher ABV might have a thing to say in my descision.

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Photo of MarcatGSB
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into St. Bernardus goblet. Purchased from Hy-Vee Wine and Spirits Waterfront in Iowa City, Iowa for $9.99/4 pack. No bottled on dating.

Apperance: Pours deep black, with a thin head of dark cream. Nice lacing..

Smell: Sweet malty nose, with a good amount of roasted coffee.
Sticky hop backbone.

Taste: The dry roasted malt forward is balanced nicely by a crisp hop finish. This is a great RIS. Great expression. This has some real complexity to it. Gets better and better as it warms up.

Mouth: Great mouthfeel. The roasted malt have a nice drying affect, and the hop finish makes my taste buds snap.

Drink and overall: Wonderful RIS. Highly recommend to others. Especially for the price. The 9% ABV doesn't show itself, rather plays a little hide and seek.

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Photo of TwelveOunces
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 Oz in a pint.

A- Syrupy black with a surprisingly large thick brown foam head.
S- Lots of mocha, coffe, roasted nuts and burn caramel. A smooth complex smell.
T- A lot of burnt nuts, caramel, Smoke and chocolate. Lots of complex flavors, the taste seems to be a little differnt every time.
M- The beer is lightly carbonated and isnt as syrupy as I thought it would be. Leaves me with a dry aftertaste that lets the smokiness linger. Warm finish.
O- This is a very good beer, Its actually my first RIS so im not to familiar with the style but im impressed with this one.

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Photo of cnjohn19
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

got this beer over great conversation at dain's place in durham...pours a dark opaque with little to no head...looks thick and bold...smells of nutty sweetness, a tad of coffee beans, and def. get the alcohol...

and DAMN this beer is delicious...consistent, sweet, and very bold...malty with a smooth aftertaste...both me and my company commented how good this stout is...good work

again, smooth, bold, and full bodied all the way down...very surprised i drank this brew, considering i usually savor russian imperials...

overall, get this beer in the cold months anytime you can...you'll thank me and the others on here...

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Photo of InI
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

poured from bottle into glass

A: black as midnight; 2 finger head dark mocha in color; leaves good lacing as you drink

S: very roasty malty coffee like aromas smells delicious

T: malty, a little smoky espresso like at first you taste the alcohol and not in a bad way after a few the boozy taste subsides and all that remains is a delicious hot chocolate coffee like beverage that has you craving more

M: creamy and full bodied great subsistancy not too thick

O: an excellent brew; if you find this quad for under $10 you better buy it! best i've seen it is $8.99 (so far)

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Photo of waughbrew
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

[about $3 for a 12oz. single at Downtown Wine and Spirits]

Black that becomes a very dark red when held up to the light. Airy khaki head that sticks and stays with consistent small light bubbles. Wow, the smell! Fruit salad. Strong mangos and raspberries. Chocolate and roasted coffee beans too. Very appetizing. Flavor is smoother chocolate with subtle herbs and growing alcohol spice. Finishes dry, but still present. Light and fluffy for the style. Smooth but a bit chalky. Alcohol pokes through, but not too much.

Wow - I had this a long time ago and did not remember or realize what a great beer it is. And a super bargain too! Cheers to North Coast.

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Photo of MizterJawsh
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at there taproom and bottled into a bomber many times.
First bottle.

L - Nice dark black with brown accents. Pours a brownish tan head, wish it had a slightly bit more head to give it that perfect look but its enough.

S - Very malty smell, chocolate with a little bit of cherry. It smells like a strong stout should. However the smell fades kind of fast.

T - WOW! First off it just hits you with that nice maltyness that you could smell, followed by a nice balance of coffee and chocolate with a little bit of vanilla and tobacco underneath. Just an awesome balance of bitter and sweet flavors.

F - That malt just crisps your tongue so nicely, it feels like a stout and taste like a stout.

On Tap
Poured into a 10 oz tulip glass
L - It looks so much cleaner, it pours a crisp tan foamy head that balances with the blackness of the stout itself. Overall its beautiful to look at.

S - Mostly the same however the maltyness is a little bit more pronounced, the smell of coffee hits you more.

T - Oh my damn, I didn't think it could get any better but I was wrong, after already being a huge fan of the bottle version the tap was phenomenal, the coffee and chocolate hit with a more robust flavoring that counteract the bitterness of the end of the beer. It tastes like a stout poured from heaven itself.

F - So much more smooth, I feel like I could drink it all day. The tan head itself is so foamy and soft it pronouncing a wonderful coffee flavor, the feeling of the foam you get from an espresso. Overall its just a fantastic beer.

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Photo of stephens101
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

First tried this about a year ago before I started reviewing, and have been meaning to get back to it. Seriously glad I did, and I waited to damn long. Pours black with red hues. Has a good two-finger creamy tan head. Great retention and lacing. Smells of dark chocolate and roasted malts. Tastes of caramel and toffee at the forefront followed by a slight hop bitterness that fits in perfectly. Being a neophyte, the complexity of the smell and taste is more than I can tackle description wise. Mouth-feel is sinewy, creamy and smooth. Probably the tastiest stout I've ever had. You can tell someone put some effort in this bad boy. Sprints head to head to the finish with the Rogue Shakespeare stout being edged out by a length.

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Photo of CBFanWish
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Grigory Rasputin's ability to control Nicholas II while he was sleeping with his wife, made him one of mankinds darkest and most mysterious men in history.
Like its namesake, Old Rasputin is truely dark and mysterious. As black as the heart of rasputin, himself. Atop was a thick, frothy dark tan head.
A wonderful aroma, sweet with the slightest bitterness, of dark chocolate and rich coffee fills the air.
Upon tasting, I am brought back to my childhood, biting into a chunk of chocolate, yet it is mixed with the more mature flavours of mocha and roasted coffee beans. Smooth and robust. Also has a prune finish.
This is not a beer for the timid. It's strong, rich flavours can be overpowering, but wonderful at the same time. I would recomend this as a dessert beer. It would be perfectly paired with chocolate cake, cheesecake, molasses cookies or ginger snaps.
One problem. I decided to review this as a porter other than a stout because it has qualities found in porters rather than stouts. I think it should be classified as an Imperial Porter.

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Photo of realbama
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

This and "Celebrator" are the two finest beers known to man. Rasputin is pitch black. You would think you're about to down pure oil if the smell didn't hit your nose just before the liquid gold hits your mouth. It smells of smokey chocolate, hops and alcohol. This beer tastes very creamy, very complex. If my kid is ever diagnosed with a terminal disease and we get to go somewhere via the "make a wish" foundation, I'm gonna demand to see what the heck they're doing at Lost Coast with this brew. ....not really, of course. I'll let my kid go to Disney World or something. But I'll always wonder.

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Photo of Jacurdy60
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured into a tumbler pint glass. Had a very dark appearance with a creamy, 2 finger head that was coffee colored, almost had a hint of grey. The lace was beautiful and formed a nice latticework all the way down until the last sip. The nose was oaky and burnt with some undertones of some kind of nut, I couldn't quite tell. The flavor was dark,dark chocolaty with strong notes of coffee. MF was thick but very smooth. This is the best stout I've ever had, and definitely in the top 2 beers I've ever had in my entire life. An overall blissful experience from the appearance all the way to the last sip. I enjoyed it at a little less than room temp (60 degrees F).

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Photo of birchstick
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This poured dark black with a nice head. It smelled of toffee, caramel, coffee, and malts. Old Rasputin tastes so smooth, it starts with chocolate and toffee and gives way to coffee after-tones. One of the best mouth-feels I had experienced. This stout was quite a treat, I can't believe it took me so long to finally try one.

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Photo of timmick
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I've been looking forward to trying this, so I'm just a little excited....

A: Pours very dark brown... even black. Nice thick, frothy, two finger head that has a nice light brown appearance. Awesome looking in the glass. Heavy lace clings to the sides as the head slowly recedes and I drink it down.

S: So nice! Dark aromas of coffee and chocolate power through strong. Grainy breads and a bit of spice present themselves and add complexity. Alcohol comes through, but is not overpowering. I really need to stop smelling this and take a sip!

T: Okay... I took my nose away so I could finally try a sip... Coffee and dark chocolate dominate at first with a warm alcohol follow. A bit more bitter on the finish than I expected, but not unpleasant. Sweet cream or vanilla notes show up also. I wasn't very impressed at first, but the longer I sip this the better it gets. Complex, dark, and powerful... Yes!

M: Thick and creamy with a dry, bitter finish. Heavy flavors may make this feel thicker than it is, but the bitterness seems to hang on the tongue a little too long.

D: Great flavors combine well for an excellent tasting brew. I couldn't drink much more than this one at a time because of the heft and alcohol. This beer got better as the time went on... very nice. I may look for another to store away for a year or so and see what I get.

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Photo of 1fastz28
4.57/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

me oh my, why i waited so long to try this i have no idea, but i pity myself for not. pours as black as a december night, no light can pass through, a yummy brown thick head lingers around for while too. smell is awesome, very strong and potent some sweet malt aroma as well as a smokey flavor. taste is a like a smoke porter almost, has a bacony flavor to it, and who doens't love bacon. mouthfeel is perfect, i love thicker, more syrupy beers and this one has it, drinkability is lower just because of its potentancy

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Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
4.28 out of 5 based on 12,126 ratings.
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