Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout | North Coast Brewing Co.

3,694 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: 3,694 | Ratings: 12,103
Photo of q33jeff
4.33/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

AROMA: Toasted Malt, Chocolate
LOOK: Dark Black, Creamy head with staying power.
TASTE: Deep Toasted Malt….like "6-Toast". Alcohol Spike late, but otherwise well balanced.
FEEL: Low carbonation, but the acidity/sharpness gives the beer some pop.A really Nice Beer.

Collected this bottle earlier in 2012, not sure why it was not rated. Just picked up a four pack.


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Photo of LennyOvies
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

L- Pitch black body with very dark brown tints through the edges. Creamy tan head, dissipates fast leaving a small crown.
S- Cherry, plum, nuts, vanilla and coffee.
T- Very bitter chocolate, earthy hops, toasted malts, some caramel and well hidden booze.
F- Medium, a bit light for a RIS.
O- Amazing beer, could use less bitterness and more body.

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Photo of sandsonik
3.63/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Look - about what you'd expect from an imperial stout - Dark, opaque, small tan head that quickly dissipates to about an eighth inch. Pretty typical for the style.

Smell - roasted coffee, hint of Bakers chocolate or cocoa. Not really getting anything else. (Chocolate reveals itself more on warming)

Taste - way more coffee than chocolate. No alcohol readily evident, so the 9% abv is well hidden. Disappointing, not a lot going on here but on the positive side, nothing really wrong either. Quite drinkable, but don't think I'd seek it out. By the way. Im getting none of the sweetness some reviewers mention. Maybe it's just my batch?

Feel - shockingly thin, didn't expect that

Overall disappointed, and I had high expectations - maybe too high? I'll try it again though, I'm a sucker for Russian Imperial Stouts...and it is pretty smooth, I must say. I just feel like the flavor is lacking. It's not bad .

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Photo of Back_in_the_Saddle
4.22/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This was poured into a nonic pint glass.
The appearance was a pitch black color with a one finger off white foamy head that dissipated leaving some subtle stringy lacing sliding into the beer.
The smell had some roasty coffee beans strolling into a nice sweet cocoa bean aroma.
The taste was mainly roasty with the sweet wrapping it up and allowing a subtle bitterness to balance. Lingering sweet to roasty aftertaste accompanies the finish nicely.
The mouthfeel was full and roasty to bitter components running over my tongue in a great almost creamy smooth sort of way.
Overall, RIS, hell yeah, it is! Always love comin' back to this.

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Photo of Beers-es
4.12/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From a 12 oz. bottle, pours black with a 2-finger pillowy tan head that sticks around. Lots of lacing, great looking beer--probably its most attractive attribute. Smell is kind of rudimentary, with mostly roasty coffee then some chocolate and cherry/dark fruit as it warms. Taste is very good, but a little simplistic compared to other RIS beers I've been having lately. Coffee and chocolate dominate, and not a lot else really. Feel is thin-ish and watery, the least attractive aspect of this beer to me. Overall it's a good stout, but not in the same league as many other dense, complex offerings these days.

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Photo of Czarkazm
3.94/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Bottle from 8/20/2013. Pours a dark coca cola color but appears black in the glass. Not completely opaque as some light is able to shine through. The head is thick and tan, dissipating to a thin layer. The aroma has lots of dark caramel, some chocolate, a deep earthiness, almost like wet dirt or wood, hint of dark fruit, and an ashy smoke. Mouth feel is medium-full, soft and creamy; nicely balanced. This one may be past its prime or possibly wasn't cellared at optimal temperature. Very strong earthiness, maybe from stale hops, milk chocolate, light roast, weak coffee, and booze.

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Photo of MizzouBrew
4.4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a thick opaque black with a one inch tan head, which leaves nice lacing while drinking. Smells faintly of dark fruit. Tastes of bitter chocolate and light coffee. One of the best stouts I've had. Just a little richer and stronger than Founders Porter, but not quite as smooth.

Using the Begnel formula, the Alcohol Score is 12 oz. x 9.0% = 108, or 2.1 Bud Lights.

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Photo of beergoot
4.22/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

After all these years, I'm surprised this has escaped a rating by me...

This is an initial rating, but I'll be having another in an other hour or so, and may update my impressions...

Coal-black body; thick, dense, light tan head; excellent head retention. Roasted grains and mild chocolate aroma; traces of vanilla and hints of fruit; almost smokey in character. Grain char flavors; bitter chocolate; black coffee; mild alcohol presence; robust hop bitterness at the finish. Heavy body; smooth and luscious; mix of sweet and dry finish.

I have enjoyed this beer for a couple of decades now and it never fails to disappoint. It exudes depth and richness in many aspects yet retains a balanced and nuanced complexity. It's a dark joy and merits repeat visits.

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Photo of StoutElk_92
4.4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark with a brown head. Smells of roasted coffee, dark chocolate and dark fruit. Taste is pretty similar, with roasted coffee, chocolate and dark fruit notes. Medium body with moderate carbonation. Slightly creamy mouthfeel. The abv is right on the boundary of tasting it, but the intense RIS flavors overwhelm the palate so that the 9% is undetectable. One of my favorite dark beers, and one that got me hooked on craft stouts.

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Photo of geofort78
4.41/5  rDev +3%
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 Erlkoenig
4.39/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

L: Pours a very dark brown, opaque, with a huge foamy khaki head. Head dissipates slowly. Lacing not so sticky. It certainly looks like it tastes.

S: There's quite a bit of toasty espresso in the nose, very much the kind of sharp alcoholic smell I expect from a RIS.

T: Wonderfully bitter espresso and chocolate hit you up front. Hints of caramel and earthy hops linger in the back. Roasted malts permeate the palate. Alcohol is quite present. Hop bitterness in the finish lingers a while.

M: Full-bodied, not too creamy. Alcohol is assertive and warming. Appropriate, I think, for the style.

O: Definitely a great RIS. Deliciously toasty, warming for the coming winter. A fine example of the style.

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Photo of Cbelk1781
4.74/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark rich brown with a nice tan head. From the first sniff you get hints of dark chocolate and malts with a very small hint of coffee. From the front to the back of the pallet an extremely smooth beer with hints of caramel and chocolate. As far as stouts go this is my number one go to it is a little pricey but well worth the money.

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Photo of Spikester
4.26/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark brown opaque with three fingers of tan head that lasts and very nice lace.
Smell is espresso hints of dark chocolate anddark roasted malts.
Taste is deep bitter espresso dark chocolate molasses and some fruity aspect from the hops.
Mouthfeel is full with modest carbonation and long bitter mostly dry finish.
Overall a rich bold beer that drinks rather easily. So take care folks this 9%abv will let you know it!

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Photo of Apellonious
4.28/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle (not sure from when) poured into a tulip glass.

A - Pitch black with a three finger frothy tan head that retains well .

S - Chocolate, hints of raspberry/fruit, roasted grains.

T - Follows the nose, with a nutty bitterness and mild smoke added.

M - Creamy, full, with a medium low level of carbonation.

O - A top tier stout, chocolate and bitter with a great feell and finish.

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Photo of BriantheBeerHound
4.71/5  rDev +10%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Look: A 60w bulb does not penetrate it. Haven't looked at it under sunlight, but I assume it's pretty dark. Thick and creamy mocha-colored head that sticks to the sides of the glass.
Smell: Big alcohol nose. Coffee, burnt sugar? It's better than it sounds.
Taste: LOTS of things here. Nuts, toffee, brown sugar/caramel, straight cocoa/dark chocolate. These are some toasty malts! Surprisingly, no coffee flavor despite the smell. Not much for hops, and if they are there, I lose them in the bitterness of the cocoa flavor.
Feel: Full-bodied mouthfeel; one of the thicker stouts I've tried. Surprisingly clean finish, but with a lingering bitterness. Much less alcoholic than different styles at similar abv.
Overall: Absolutely superb beer. Complex, bold, and pretty cheap too!

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Photo of Tonyjenlasc
4.38/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Look - Black as can be. One finger tan/khaki head. Looks great in the glass.
Smell - Big whiff of chocolate is the very first thing I get followed by coffee/roasted notes.
Taste - dark coffee, milk chocolate, roasted notes, some sweetness, bitter espresso type finish
Feel - Creamy, silky and smooth. Great mouthfeel

Overall - An enjoyable beer to have on a cool night. Will drink again without a doubt.

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Photo of Umassgrad98
3.67/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

So my girlfriend ordered a dragons milk and I ordered this. It had a bit of a harsh bite that lingered in my mouth. Was expecting a more traditional type stout and was a bit disappointed. Not terrible but regret ordering the dragons milk after tasting hers.

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Photo of CDR-HomeBrew
4.98/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

A: Pitch black with a tan/brown head that coats the glass through its whole duration.
S: I smell a dark roast coffee with hints of milk chocolate.
T: The taste is exactly what I detected with the smell. Even more of a dark/burnt coffee note.
M: The mouthfeel was great. I expected it to be slightly more thick and filling.

Overall great beer

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Photo of BowWowWowYippyYoIPA
4.04/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours pitch black with a frothy milk coffee head. Great distribution and retention. Aroma is of coffee, chocolate, steely grain, and a whiff of earth and grassy hops. Lots of dark chocolate up front with dark roasted coffee and a lingering steely bitter finish. Mouthfeel somehow at the same times feels rich and viscous, but also crisp and refreshing. A very tasty beer, although the metallic aroma and flavor is a bit off-putting.

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Photo of HopHunter19
4.52/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - dark black/espresso colored beer with a mocha head that's huge and leaves GREAT lacing
S - nice coffee, chocolate, some creaminess in there, whole milk, oatmeal, roasty but not overly so
T - chocolate, coffee are the first things that come to mind, extremely well balanced with roastiness and hop bitterness just enough to perfectly balance this out. it's got some creaminess to it also.
M - thick, alcohol is completely covered, aftertaste is dark chocolate, bitter cocoa, and some creaminess that hangs around too
O - This is an awesome beer. I don't know why I don't buy it more often.

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Photo of beerbellydaddy
4.67/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

First of all the name - Old Rasputin - is absolutely perfect for an Imperial Stout. This offers a full creamy head when initially poured and abundant lacing traces the glass above the beer. It does not linger too long. The smell is mild but classic stout - earthy, chocolate, and maybe fig. The taste is what counts and it is nearly perfect with hints of rich dark chocolate, dry fruit, and malt, balanced with an initial mildly acidic bitterness that dissolves into the dark chocolate finish. Old Rasputin is bold, balanced, full, and creamy with minimal effervescence. This is one of the best stouts I've tasted.

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Photo of Wiffler27
4.33/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

pours a dark black, slight dark ruby hue at the bottom of the glass. thick dark cream colored head.

smells like chocolate coffee, not overly strong aroma but is surely present.

tastes like chocolate coffee, some bitterness to it as well. an alcohol hint to it as well.

goes down smooth but has a hint of alcohol in it. expected that but not as smooth.

overall a really good beer but nothing fantastic. i prefer Ten Fidy, maybe it's just me. would buy this again because it's a great RIS and available year round. good RIS

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Photo of The_Snow_Bird
4.62/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark with no light coming through. Has a huge creamy dark head that goes away slowly. Can smell the roasted malts and dark fruits. Tastes like how it smells.

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Photo of StevenMilligan
4.81/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

L: Deepest black with a 1.5" tan head. No lacing, but the head thins nicely and follows this one down.

S: Toffee, Coffee, and a hint of raisin bread.

T: Toffee again, dark malts, rum raisin on the foreground. The finish is pleasantly bitter. As much as I love a sweet stout, the balance of this stout is perfect.

F: Moderate to low carbonation. Creamy mouthfeel - fits the style.

O: The closest thing I can compare this to is Ten Fidy. I'd drink this over Ten Fidy 6 days of the week. Unlike Ten Fidy it doesn't really attempt to hide the alcohol, it's just simple. The dark fruit flavors play with the alcoholic tones nicely. The dry finish was a welcomed surprise. I would seek this brew out again, would love to have a nitro version.

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Photo of jhartley
4.38/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle with a 07/23/2015 date at the bottom.
Dark black body with a dark tan head with; thin film of it hung around the entire time in the glass. No lacing.
Aromas of char, roasted malts, bittersweet chocolate.
Nice unsweetened chocolate taste up front with a slight warming alcohol on the finish. Complex.
Nice full mouthfeel, you know you are drinking a big beer!
Overall a great Russian Imperial Stout that covers all the bases in want you would want when you decide to drink it. Very easy to drink, dangerously easy at that! Needs to be sipped and allowed to warm up to room temperature to really enjoy all the complex flavors.

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Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
4.28 out of 5 based on 12,103 ratings.
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