Old Rasputin XIV Anniversary | North Coast Brewing Co.

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Old Rasputin XIV AnniversaryOld Rasputin XIV Anniversary
588 Ratings
Old Rasputin XIV AnniversaryOld Rasputin XIV Anniversary

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

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.50%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
None provided.

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 588 |  Reviews: 167
Reviews by Jade:
Photo of Jade
1/5  rDev -76.9%

More User Reviews:
Photo of tectactoe
4.18/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Once again, another awesome brew that was generously cracked by Mike, can't thank him enough. Raspy XIV pours an ominous-looking, deep and dark black with a cream, viscous, mocha-tan head that is slow to rise up from the oily abyss and fades relatively quickly. A nice, fine-bubbled foam can easily be conjure up with a quick swirl of the glass, however. A pretty nice looking brew.

An initial roasted malt kick delves into a sea of deep, dark chocolate and bittersweet cocoa before sending you into the huge wave of bourbon-barrel induction. Heavy bourbon notes, warming and vigorous, mesh with a much lighter note of dry oak that's been lathered in a rich, warm, savory cocoa bath. Raspy XIV certainly carries a pretty boisterous aroma - there's no doubt that this is gonna be a massive beer.

Staunch bourbon and heavy, heavy barrel notes arise from the first sip, reaffirming that this is one bad-ass beer that you're gonna have to sip. The barrel influence is perhaps a bit higher than one might gather from the nose, and the bourbon does a great job of warming up your chest. This is no joke. An overture of vanilla notes, light coconut, and the slightest touch of maple sweetness helps to cut the heat, also byproducts of the barrel-aging.

Once you get past the big initial booze-burst, the malts open up and come to life; roasted malts leave a slight char and ashy feel on the back of the palate, while a softer, sweeter, and creamier helping of smooth cocoa and rich chocolate works the sides of the mouth. An aftertaste full of burnt coffee beans, roast, heavy oak, and warm bourbon leaves your palate sticky and fully-coated. Such a huge mouth feel on this one, too; chewy, thick, and silky-creamy like a barrel-aged stout should be.

Such a nice treat, this is a great example of a barrel-aged stout that will knock you on your ass if you don't sit and sip it like it should be handled. Perhaps even a bit *too* hot in this phase, I would imagine that a year or two on this bad boy would really turn it into something magical. I may prefer the original Rasputin solely based on it's awesome flavor and superior drinkability, but this is really a special beer, and I would think that time may treat it very well.

 2,225 characters

Photo of t2grogan
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of ricksrealm
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of EastBay_Nick
5/5  rDev +15.7%

Photo of lordofthewiens
4.47/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

In a tulip this beer was a very black color with a cafe au lait head.

It had a roasted malt aroma. Rather boozy. Some oak and some dark fruit.

Sweet chocolate taste. Espresso coffee. A lot of bourbon. Oak/vanilla. a tiny bit of raisin. These all went well together.

Medium to full-bodied. The alcohol added to, rather than detracted from, the mouthfeel.

I've been fortunate enough to have drunk some really great beers recently. This was one of them.

 454 characters

Photo of NWer
4.75/5  rDev +10%

Photo of warnerry
4.15/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip.

A - Pours black with almost three fingers of brown head. A bit surprising after the very subtle pop of the cork. Head has very good retention, leaving good lacing, and eventually settling to a thin cap.

S - Nice bourbon aroma, with both vanilla and oak being prominent. The barrel aromas really seem to cover the base beer here. Don't get me wrong, it actually smells really good, but it is quite a strong barrel presence. Some chocolate, a bit of char, some coffee, maybe some caramel malt as well. Pretty nice.

T - Taste follows the nose pretty closely, as there is a lot of barrel character (char and oak), as well as a nice vanilla presence. Booze presence is actually pretty tame. Nice chocolate and coffee tastes, along with some very subtle fruit flavors. Taste has more booze than the smell, which knocks this down a touch. Still, very tasty.

M - Medium mouthfeel, somewhat creamy, with a very dry, char and tannin-filled finish.

O - This was a tasty barrel-aged stout, but quite heavy on the char, and too much alcohol in the taste, to be truly great.

 1,086 characters

Photo of Snikwad1020
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of daedalusfinch
5/5  rDev +15.7%

Photo of JupiterJesus
3.5/5  rDev -19%

Photo of Happy_Camper
5/5  rDev +15.7%

Photo of xdefeatsy
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of MattyG85
4.73/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 500 ml corked bottle into a Surly Darkness Chalice glass.

Appearance: Pours very dark and black with no real color coming through. A big five finger brownish tan head which slowly settles into a thin tan film layer. Lots of sticky lacing around the glass.

Smell: Big bourbon aroma upfront with good hints of woody oak and vanilla. Big hints of chocolate and dark roasted malts with some coffee and molasses. Also some dark fruits lingering in the background with light hints of prunes and dark cherry. Somewhat boozy as expected.

Taste: Like the nose suggests, a big taste of bourbon barrel aging and dark malts. Good taste of vanilla and oak with dark roasty caramel malts. Notes of chocolate, coffee, and molasses. Also some light hints of dark cherries and prunes that should come out more with some age. Very tasty.

Mouthfeel: Medium to heavy body with a carbonation that is fairly high for a imperial stout, but it works well. A little heat is felt from the alcohol as expected with a barrel aged bomb like this but its very manageable. Vanilla lingers in the aftertaste.

Overall: A very good job of barrel aging for a great stout. A great sipper.

 1,173 characters

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

Poured from a bomber into a Southern Tier tulip glass.

A: Pitch black torso sporting a three finger thick mocha cap and random patches of sticky lacing.

S: This definitely has the nose of a bourbon barrel aged brew: bourbon, oak, charred wood, smoke, a bit musty and earthy.

T: Straight up bourbon, y’all. Wow. I’m definitely tasting the oak, lots of smoke, some faint vanilla and maybe some dark fruit in the finish.

M: Creamy, nicely carbonated with a dry and oaky bitter finish.

O: This isn’t as complex as I’d hoped but what it’s doing, it’s doing exceptionally well. Undeniable bourbon and oak play together a bit loudly here and I’m hoping this will mellow just a tad over time. I’ve shelved two bottles and look forward to reviewing this again a year from now. All that being said, there’s nothing to keep you from drinking this one now, I’m certainly glad I did.

 895 characters

Photo of TKEbeerman
3.63/5  rDev -16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I want to preface this review by saying I have very high hopes for this beer. As bold and in-your-face as Old Raspy is to begin with, this should mellow and add complexity with the Bourbon.

A: Poured into my sniftner, this stout pours a very impress black with brown hints when held to the light. The head is massive, fluffy, brown, and is leaving some awesome lace.

S: The aroma made my mouth water, mhmmm Bourbon. Its been too long since I've had a beer of this caliper. The Bourbon soaked aroma has some rich sweet notes and oak. A little boozy, but still appealing.

T: The flavor is Bourbon up front, Bourbon in the back with notes of oak and some small amount of hops on the back. The boldness of Old Raspy is tamed, but the rougher qualities it possess remain. Tons of roasted malt notes remain with small hints of chocolate.

MF: Like many BA beers, this brew suffered on the mouth feel from being in the Bourbon Barrel. The mouth feel has thinned considerably.

Overall, this is a decent beer, but not every stout improves from spending time in a barrel. Still love Old Raspy though!

 1,094 characters

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.75/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Broke Bitch Poutin' for bringing this beer to the March Madness 2012 bottle share (after showing up empty handed and drinking dozens of awesome/expensive things like Utopia etc. . .it took some prodding to get him to actually bring a grand total of 1 bottle to the table eventually, but I digress).

Poured out a black as night liquid, small head on the top of it, brownish. Usual bourbon and imperial stout aroma from this one, not as harsh in previous years, so that's nice. Solid taste, plenty of chocolate to tame the alcohol heat, which as always, is substantial, but not as brutal as last year's. Usual oak and mild vanilla notes.

The beer delivers unlike last year's, but at the end of the day, it costs as much as Black Tuesday, and isn't nearly as good.

 774 characters

Photo of chinchill
4.31/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

XIV version poured near black with a durable, dark tan head.

Full bodied; light ABV heat; slightly syrupy (in a good way); (from memory) smooth than the original Old Rasputin.

Very fine smell and flavor even though the bourbon barrels partially over-power the original's RIS characteristics. Indeed, my main criticism is that there is a bit too much bourbon barrel flavoring in this stout.

O: This aging treatment has transformed this ale into something quite different but nearly as appealing.

 498 characters

Photo of JohnLynch
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of lookitsfelias
4.65/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a - poured a thick dark color with a long lasting 'root beer' head with lots of lacing

s - instantly got the aroma of figs, dried fruit, also thick vanilla, bitter cocoa and bourbon

t - the first flavor i get is that dark, dried fruit flavor, the bourbon barrels are apparent and show immensely in the flavor, some hints of espresso, dark cocoa and vanilla

m - the mouth feel came up short, and to me was the only downfall of the beer. not enough carbonation and it felt almost flat, this could have been a result of shipping however. also felt that it could have been a little thicker

o - great beer. the barrel aging definitely makes this beer evolve and change, however, is it different enough from the original to be worth the price? that one is up to the buyer and drinker

 782 characters

Photo of dsauter
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of acurtis
4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of ste5venla
4.25/5  rDev -1.6%

Photo of r0nyn
3.25/5  rDev -24.8%

Photo of lnashsig
4.05/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Well, I saw this one at HEB, and never had it, and despite the hefty pricetag (22$ for 500 ml, making this one of the most expensive beers/ounce I have ever bought in a store), I pulled the trigger in the spirit of "try everything once". No bottle date on this one. Popped the cork and poured into my Brooklyn tulip (why oh why isn't my CBS snifter that I ordered a couple days ago here yet for this?). Pours a pitch black chewy thickness, big bubbles come off of a dark tan head. Really, a perfect looking BA Imp Stout. Smell- rich molasses bourbon, coffee, roast, dark fruit (maybe dark cherries). Smells amazing. Going 5 here for sure. Taste- HUGE bourbon notes up front and rough alcohol heat. The sweetness of the booze and the chocolate notes blend against the roof of my mouth and make for a sweet cherry combo. this is a little bit lighter in mouthfeel than I expected, and its way more carbonated than I expected. The coffee notes are there, as well as the bitterness from the roasted malt. This is a very booze forward BA imp stout- I can see that this may really mellow out over time, but I can't see that it would be worth it enough for me to procure it at this price to try cellaring it. Overall, my verdict is that, while this is a good BA Imp Stout, it is not a great one, esp at this price. I don't get it. These guys make one of the best readily available and consistent fairly priced Imp stouts, but when they barrel age it, it causes them to more than quadruple their price per ounce? (8$ for 48 ounces= 0.16 per ounce, vs 22$ for 20 ounce= 0.90 per ounce). Overall, good beer, but not worth the money.

 1,621 characters

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Old Rasputin XIV Anniversary from North Coast Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.32 out of 5 with 588 ratings