Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout | North Coast Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
95
world-class
3,646 Reviews
Old Rasputin Russian Imperial StoutOld Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout
BEER INFO

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

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:
3,646
Ratings:
11,921
Avg:
4.28
pDev:
18.46%
 
 
Wants:
578
Gots:
2,830
For Trade:
56
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User Reviews
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Reviews: 3,646 | Ratings: 11,921
Photo of lovetranquillity
4.38/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Black hole of doom with planet sucking depth. Khaki colored head.

Alcohol, espresso, toffee, malt, vanilla, cocoa

Alcohol, coffee, espresso bitterness, hop bitterness, sweet malt, sweet roasted coffee, hints of berry, toffee, chocolate.

Thick, medium carbonated, smooth, syrupy.

The alcohol is a little too apparent in order to make it highly drinkable.

Very very good. My favorite easy to find RIS.

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Photo of brendanbeer
4.53/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a. lovely darkness. head lasts in all its dark brown glory.

s. chocolate, coffee, alcohol. yummy.

t. oh man! chocolate and coffee playfully integrate with the bitter hoppy alcohol flavors. roasty and toasty and delicious. something about the profile of this stout is just spot on for me. i love this.

m. nice n smooth baby with a perfect abv linger.

d. its not just drinkable. its a must drink for me. this beer reminds me how good beer can taste, and continues to impress me as vividly as the first time i had it... blew my limited beer mind then, and still shines now.

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

12 ounce bottle into pint glass

A - Pours pitch black with two fingers of tan head that never fully settle, beautiful sticky lacing

S - overloaded with bitter chocolate and coffee, not a hint of booze, and a nice malt presence

T - Perfect balance of Coffee and Chocolate, nice dark malt character as well

M - Really light considering it's ABV. nice carb, althought I like my heavy stouts a little flatter.

O - This to me is the benchmark RIS. Every time I have one it's extremely enjoyable and insanely easy drinking.

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Photo of D11
4.3/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

from bottle into tulip

A- pours black (no light coming through) with a two finger cocoa colored head. nice lacing

S- roasted malt, almost a smoked food smell and spicy wood.
complexity changes as it warms. becomes sweeter; syrup

T- smokey malt, caramel, hops, chocolate, and some coffee on the end of the drink

M- medium to thick bodied. very nice feeling

O- this brew is excellent. my first RIS and i enjoyed it very much. comparatively one of the cheaper(price) RIS' that ive seen available also. this is definately worth trying.

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Photo of takemetothelion
4.02/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Last beer I'm trying of the night as a gift from my brother, Picked up at bootleggers. Im a fan of the high alcohol content and a stout is the perfect thing to send me into bliss, so I'll our it into a tulip and rock out.

A- One finger head rises to the top. It's literally as black as black can get. No visible carbonation. Good lacing.

S- not that strong of a nose. Though chocolate and yeast are popping pretty strongly. The chocolate is actually like a strong potent "pure cocoa". Definitely a lot of alcohol coming through.

T- Dry, malt chocolate, alcohol is hidden fairly well, but it really blends nicely with the overall taste. Kind of a bitter dark cocoa. Loving this one. This one is definitely warming me up. Not a creamy stout but it works.

MF- Like I said not very creamy, yet still full and flat with not much carbonation. Let's you really taste that cocoa, the definite highlight of the drink.

Overall, this stout is really deserving of the high ratings it got, world class for sure.

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Photo of PintOh1759
3/5  rDev -29.9%

Nose- ALCOHOL!!! right to the face, ignorant in your face smell. Some chocolate if you search far and deep into your nostrils. Some smokey hints but not overwhelming. Maybe a little raisin.

Apperance- Black as night with a thick creamy Mocha colored head.

Taste- Smokey Malts, Some hop presence, burnt sugar, DARK bitter chocolate, and an after taste of chewing tobacco a very rough hang around dry alch taste that is impossible to place in the same category as anything else.

Overall this beer is okay and i may drink another one day but the lingering tobacco taste does throw me off a bit

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Photo of boblinneman
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Dark dark dark brown, not black. Roasted alcoholic nose. Roasted malt flavor followed by a strong alcohol and hop bite. A very good imperial, true to the form. Storm King still is King of the Imperials.

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Photo of SamuraiJack
4.42/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

An excellent American Stout. Perhaps not on par with either the Shakespeare or the Brooklyn Chocolate, but still a great beer.
On first pour we have a nearly completely opaque brew, deep, dark, black as black. The head isn't very strong or thick or creamy, but has tight and even sized bubbles. Nice cascade forms to introduce you to the pleasures to come. The aromas are nearly overwhelmingly alcoholic, but somehow balanced by the deep and rich roasted malt and dark roast espresso notes.
The first taste is oh so smooth. Flavours are dominated by coffee, charcoal, malt and bitter hops. The alcohol adds potency and spicey notes, but is still balanced. Aftertaste fades into impressive sweetness, still balanced by the ongoing espresso notes.
Mmmm.... this is a stout I could even session drink. Nice.

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Photo of nathanho
4.15/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Beware the high ABV Old Rasputin...I swear, each bottle has an actual "Little Old Rasputin" who finds his way into your head, causing much confusion and havoc, especially if more than one or two gather there at the same time - which is to be expected, given the crazy old coot's rasputation, I mean, reputation and all...See, he's up to his old trick's again, that wily Old Rasputin...

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Photo of mwearl
3.81/5  rDev -11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Very dark brown/black color - cannot see light through it. Head is less than an inch and doesn't last long. The taste is bitter as expected and the first couple of sips have a noticeable alcohol flavor. Very good beer with dark chocolate. If rating of 9% ABV is accurate then why do I fee so buzzed after sipping just one?! Two would put me over the top. This is a good beer if you love dark bitters (which I do).

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Photo of irishtimepiece
4.58/5  rDev +7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass.
Pitch black except for ruby hues at the edges. Thick tan head that recedes slowly, but lasts the whole way down. Lacing is very good. Smells strongly of roasted coffee and very dark chocolate, some caramel. Tastes very strongly of roasted coffee with hints of sweet caramel, but the chocolate from the smell is missing from the taste. Alcoholic bite right at the end that I like very much. Mouthfeel is right where it should be for a stout. The only thing really holding this brew back is it's drinkability. With an alcohol content of 9%, I can't see myself drinking more than 2 a night. Overall, one of my favorites. Even at 7 dollars a 4 pack, it's worth it.

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Photo of Mechphisto
3.08/5  rDev -28%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A- A nice, rich opaque black pour. Not too thick of a head, but a nice soft tan. Doesn't last long, but keeps a lacing a decent time.

S- A toasted chocolate coffee smell. Rich, deep smell. Not complex, per se, but the notes change as you smell it and as it warms up.

T- Just like it smells, rich chocolate coffee--but a HEAVY toasted nut taste as well. Very bitter, almost burnt nut taste. Like a coffee brewed with ground burnt nuts with a touch of chocolate.

M- Very creamy, rich, thick. Chewable. Bitter on the back of the palate but doesn't stay around longer than appreciated.

D- Can only handle one, being very thick, stout, filling. You want to drink it slow and savor it (I dare anyone to drink it fast,) which helps that the taste and aroma changes as the temperature changes. Unfortunately it gets TOO bitter toward room temperature.

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Photo of wavz
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Just like a stout should be. Dark rich coffee color with just a hint of deep amber. Head pours thick and creamy, sticks around for a beat or two and leaves a nice lacing.

S- Peacans, Coffee, Chocolate, and just a hint of smoke.

T- I love the complexity of this beer. Earthy notes of roasted walnuts or pecans. Chocolate, plenty of coffee with light hints of sweetness in the backround.

M- Smooth and rich, viscus, and just a bit of heat in the end of this one.

D- This has to be one of my favs right after Rogue's Shakespear Stout. This one is a close second. If you havent tried it yet, your missing out.

Wavz

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Photo of wanker
3.45/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

It is mandatory that you let this beer warm before drinking it - what a difference it makes.

When I take my first sips right from the fridge, the hops are way too harsh, making the beer unbalanced and killing the other flavors. But -- if you let it warm up some -- the hops mellow out and the other flavors come through. The beer then becomes nice and balanced.

This is a good, complex imperial stout. A bit too syrupy in the finish for me, but not as syrupy as Samuel Smiths.

Given the choice, I'd prefer Victory Storm King, my favorite impy stout. But if Storm King is unavailable, this is a good second choice.

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Photo of johnmichael712
4.88/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Poured out of a 12. oz bottle into a nonic glass. This beer pours an opaque mahogany color with ruby tints around the edges and it allows light through when backlit with a lamp. The dark khaki colored head starts is absolutely gargantuan in size and rises from the depths of the glass the way a nitro-bottle or nitro-can pour does. The head has a wonderfully soft, pillowy texture and takes a long time to dissipate. As I'm drinking this beer a moderate amount of lace is left clinging onto the glass for dear life.

Smell: My first sniff of the nose reminds me a lot of Victory's Storm King Russian Imperial Stout because the hops dominate the nose in a similar way, but in subsequent sniffs the aroma of bittersweet chocolate is dominant. There is also a strong roasted malt presence in the nose, and hints of coffee, molasses, and brown sugar.

Taste: This beer starts off with a wonderful chocolate and malt flavor with a hint of espresso (the usual chocolate/espresso flirtation that Imperial Stouts have) and finishes with a very light citrusy hop flavor and a good amount of alcohol warmth. I disagree entirely with those that say this beer is too hoppy, as I found the hops to be very toned down and much more subtle than Storm King. Dominated instead by intense chocolate and roasted malt flavors, this is one exceptionally delicious beer. I wish I had a better grasp of the English language to more fully describe this beer, but it doesn't really matter because only sampling this beer yourself will truly do it justice.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is where this beer truly shines, and to rate it at anything lower than a five would be criminal. My first sip took my breath away with how creamy, luxurious, silky, multiple other adjectives, this beer feels on my tongue. This silkiness is supplemented by an insanely thick and chewy body and a very light amount of carbonation that makes this beer feel more like drinking a melted chocolate bar than drinking a beer. This is definitely the best "feeling" beer I've ever drank, and if I could give it a six I would.

Drinkability: One of the most drinkable stouts out there. There isn't even a slight mention of the 9% alcohol, and the smooth, lavish mouthfeel mixed with the decadent chocolaty taste make it possible to quaff this brew all night long. At the moment I'm having a tough time imagining a more perfect night than sitting in front of a fire with a good book drinking a couple of these baddies.

Notes: At the time of my review this beer is sitting at number eighty-nine on the best of BA list just above Storm King, thus I was expecting something qualitatively similar to Storm King. Boy was I wrong. This beer is superior in every way, and is one of the best Russian Imperial Stouts out there. It definitely deserves to be higher on the best of BA list, and right now only Stone's Imperial Russian Stout seems to be the equal of this beer in the RIS category. If you ever see this beer in the store do yourself a favor a pick up more than one. You won't be disappointed.

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Photo of ocmpoma
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A- pours out a dark black with a thick, tan head that sticks around a bit and leaves plenty of lacing.

S- not a lot of aroma, but there's definitely chocolate, caramel, and toffee in there, all with a distinct roasted character.

T- delicious. Bitter, roasted nuts and toffee with hints of coffee, the back of my palate really enjoys this beer. Taste is long and lingering.

M- great mouthfeel, too. Not too heavy, but certainly an in-your-face, up front feeling. It's almost chewy, but in a very good way.

D- drinkable, yes, but not excessively so. I've had RISs that were smoother; Old Rasputin's mouthfeel and taste make me rather savour this one. Not a session beer for me, but one of my favorites.

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Photo of bridgetowhophead
4.16/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Old Rasputin! Picked up a 4-pack on sale for $7.49; I will try not to let the amazingness of that bargain influence my rating.

A: Poured into a tulip. Nearly pitch black color with a very pretty 2 finger tan head that unfortunately doesn't last too long. Makes a surprising amount of lacing for a 9% abv beer.

S: Fails to deliver what I expect for an RIS. I get dark roasted malt and a little chocolate.

T&M: Above and beyond the smell. The finish is especially superb with black malt coating the palate and throat. Mouthfeel is beautifully syrupy and creamy.

D: As drinkable as many 5% regular stouts.

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Photo of TulipSnifter
4.45/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is about a year old bottle.

Appearance: it is dark brown to black with a great cap.

Smell: I smell a lot of coffee and malts.

Taste: I'm catching a ton of coffee and Molasses.

Mouth feel: It seems to be heavy but smooth at the same time.

Drink ability: It sips nice and easy.

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Photo of RTJakarta
4.46/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

From a bottle.

Black as night with a light tan head, leaving behind some lovely lacing. Beautiful.

A nice coffee/chocolate smell. Not too overpowering, but definitely evident. Very nice.

Taste is fantastic. Like most people say, malt, chocolate, and coffee. A nice bit of warmth to go with the 9% ABV. Wouldn't guess a 9% ABV though.

A bit more carbonation than I would think in the mouth, but it's still really rich and thick in the mouth.

For me, I don't drink stouts too often. Usually like to have a nice meaty meal, which is something I don't have too often. But when I wanna have a stout, especially a RIS, this is an absolute go-to beer. Fantastic. Could drink this often.

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Photo of tylernim
4.23/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours black with a thick dense head. Great looking beer.

S - Alcohol, malts, Espresso.

T - Chocolate, espresso, malts. Alcohol with a slight bitterness.

M - Chewy and thick; how it should be.

D - Not nearly as high as I wish it was.

Superb stout!

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Photo of kinupanda
4.03/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Snifter pour from bottle. A solid dark coffee color with good opaqueness. There is a noticeably concave two-finger head that quickly settles into a one-finger collar that laces moderately. An inviting chocolate scent, but possibly too sweet. Excellent body with coffee characteristics and some hoppy bitterness. The finish is a dark cacao. Not a very complex mouthfeel. While reasonably high in alcohol content, it is not overwhelming and only becomes truly noticeable in the aftertaste. Not as heavy as comparable stouts, and possibly a good session beer.

FourthBeer potential: AVERAGE, as there are plenty of more complex stouts out there. As the bottle says, though, Сердечный друг не родится вдруг, implying this has potential to grow on you.

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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 xuptygm
4.7/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Upon pouring this beer looks and smells amazing. Black as night big frothy brown head. Sweet roasted malt, coffee, chocolate, and alcohol aromas. Smells very complex and delightful.

Very(!) smooth drinking. Starts out tasting of roasted (almost burnt) malt with a little bitterness (I presume from the hops), but then finishes with a very complex smooth chocolate coffee finish.

After taking a few drinks I noticed that the beer leaves a very faint lacing, and the head begins to recede. After warming a bit the beer just keeps getting better. It evolves into a bittersweet chocolate finish that somehow tastes bitter yet equally sweet. I would drink this at room temperature to get the full effect.

One of the best R.I.S. I have had the pleasure of drinking. A classic beer for sure.

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Photo of William85
4.16/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

I've had this beer a few times before in the bottle, so I was excited to see it on nitro-tap at a nearby barbecue join (bitterroot in Ballard).

Wow. The flavors in this beer are amazing -- lush chocolate and coffee notes stand out, supported by a fairly intense hop layer. I recall being just as impressed by the flavors with the regular bottle version of Old Rasputin, but the nitro definitely adds a lot to the experience.

The beautiful 2-finger head at the top of my pour was amazingly substantial -- almost completely unaffected by my first couple of sips -- and the texture of this beer is correspondingly creamy/velvety, leaving a pristine lacing trail all the way down the glass.

This is a great beer, as all of the other reviews proclaim, I would heartily recommend the nitro-tap version.

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Photo of 50wolves
4.24/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a dimpled beer mug, pours very dark with small head that is brown. I find this a more astringent beer than most stouts, flavour is stronger than more recently tasted stouts as well. Would recommend for a drink however if have had better stouts, namely stone imperial.

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Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout from North Coast Brewing Co.
4.28 out of 5 based on 11,921 ratings.
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