Imperial Stout | Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)

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Imperial StoutImperial Stout
3,802 Ratings
Imperial StoutImperial Stout

Brewed by:
Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
England, United Kingdom

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Todd on 02-27-2001

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,802 |  Reviews: 1,781
Photo of MizzouBrew
4.34/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from from 550 ml bottle into a Schlafly tulip. Pours black with a thick tan head (actually one of the best looking beers I've ever poured). Lacing is not sticky, but rather slides down the glass in an oily fashion. Smells of sweet, dark fruits. A really solid, creamy stout and medium bodied. At 7%, just a mild, but pleasant alcohol note. Glad I have enough for a second glass!

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Photo of twelvsies
4.67/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Man, this company makes some great brews. Seems as though I discover a brewery and then have to try each of their beers. Sammy Smith has been that brewery recently, along with Fantome. Both great in different ways. This is one of the beers (among several) in their lineup that will now be a permanent part of my "beer rotation." Appears a staunch black color, letting in no light. Smells and tastes are super complex. Lots of different angles coming at me here. First there's a dark fruity component, dried cherries and currants. There's also a nice roasted malt in there and actually a bit of spicy hops that I can definately taste. More odd stuff: milky tones, dust, and a leathery character, like sticking your face in a baseball glove that's been sitting in the sun all day. This beer is almost "funky" in the way that a farmhouse ale might be described, though with out the sour. Really amazing tastes here, very complex once again. Slick warm mouthfeel and the surprises behind every sip make this one a real pleasure to drink. Cheers to Sammy, whoever he may be.

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Photo of LordAdmNelson
3.95/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice little stout here for sure. I say little, because I feel that 7% might be a bit light for a RIS, but this guy certainly made up for it in flavor. Pours the characteristic dark black/brown with a bit of chocolate milk-colored head that had ok retention. Aroma is pretty nice, some fruit, chocolate, roasted malt, hint of booze, maybe even some vanilla in there too. Taste has some nice bitter roasted malt making a big play, but dark fruit poke in and out at times. Dark chocolate also makes an appearance. Again some booze comes in there too. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, but a bit thin as far as I'm concerned. Really enjoyed the drink, a good, available, affordable RIS.

It is a little weird that at 7% the booze in this one is not very well-hidden. What's weirder is that I think it works for the beer in that alcohol flavors are pretty normal for other popular big ABV guys in the style.

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Photo of climax
4.32/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As black as the outline of this website, and no brown highlights. The head was creamy and dark. Retention was good as well.

The nose was no surprise, dark and bold. However, it was not overly roasty or dry. Flavors molasses, raisins, vanilla, licorice, and brown sugar all were evident. Very complex aroma, even some ripe raspberry syrup flavors came through. It definitely keeps me smelling.

The taste follows the aroma quite close, with some added acidity. The more roasted tones of dry coffee and chocolate showed themselves, unlike in the nose.

The body is full, as expected, pretty easy to drink though. The carbonation was mild but ample. Ultimately, it was very creamy with a dryish finish. Damn Good, and surprisingly easy to drink.

 746 characters

Photo of Cramshawbar
3.75/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of sephyrott
4.32/5  rDev +3.8%

Photo of brett606
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of seand
4.31/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a deep black, with just a tinge of brown hues around the bottom of the glass. Head is thick, foamy, big bubbles, fairly dark tan. Retains pretty well and leaves great lacing.

S: A kind of muted sweetness, full and complex. Roasted coffee notes blended with dark chocolate tones and molasses.

T: Lots of flavor, full and complex. Similar to the smell but moreso, with rich bitter coffee and dark chocolate notes as well as dried fruit.

M: Medium amount of carbonation, very full bodied, with an aftertaste that lingers for a long time.

D: It's very full bodied and heavy, but, given that, it's also very drinkable.

A great RIS, that shows you can create a hugely flavorful beer without a similarly huge ABV.

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Photo of khiasmus
4.03/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Well done.


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Photo of igl
4.72/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

L: deep black color, one finger beige head.
S: coffee, dark chocolate, roasted.
T: roasted malts, bitter chocolate, coffee, brown sugar, hazelnut, a bit of wine sourness in aftertaste.
F: smooth, creamy, soft carbonation.
O: pretty light for a RIS, but balanced, complex, drinkable, nice.

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Photo of mooseo
4/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

550ml bottle into tulip.

A - Dark black brown with a large tan head.

S - Roasted malt, molasses, dark chocolate, slight dark fruit.

T - A wonderful mix of sweet roasted malt, caramel, chocolate, plum, and black cherries. Light earthy hops lend balance. Finishes slightly bitter with burnt malts, coffee, and dark fruit.

M - Exceptionally smooth and soft. Medium bodied. Dry finish.

O - A nice complex imperial stout with good balance. The plum and black cherry gives a distinct character to the beer. Very drinkable.

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Photo of Sathanas
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of BWED
3.93/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip from a 12 oz. bottle

A- Dark dark deep brown, near black, with a beautifully retained one finger brown head. Rings of lacing, and a quick experience of cascade as it pours.

S- Chocolate, and strong espresso bitterness. I sense a slight metallic aroma as well (like most Samuel Smith's.) Iron-rich water?

T- Some chocolate, some coffee, no metallic taste. Slight hop balance. Not as flavorful as I would expect from an imperial, but a well crafted brew.

M- Full-bodied but smooth and clean. A little bit of a dry finish.

O- A quality beer, but I don't think I can consider it "Imperial." A moderate ABV, and a mild flavor base makes it just seem like a stout. If it were any drier, I would even consider it dry irish.

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Photo of Elfastball7
5/5  rDev +20.2%

Photo of eat
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice frothy cover of mocha coloured head topping an opaque, black body. Nice lacing.

Smells of minerals, dark roasted malt, light molasses, buttery caramel, dark berries and English hops.

Dark berries really come out in the flavour, along with roast malt, minerals, a little butter, light English hops and lots of coffee and dry cocoa on the finish. The flavour is a little on the thin side for my liking but what's here is great.

Smooth medium body with light carbonation. Normally I would think the feel is too thin for a stout but it works here.

Amazingly drinkable for 7% ABV. As far as I've tried, this is the definitive English imperial stout.

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Photo of Musineer
5/5  rDev +20.2%

Photo of UcDru
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of marcpal
3.81/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Was on hiatus from Sam Smith after their Winter Welcome last year, which I found hideous. However, lately, Ive tried some of their others and are quite good.

Foiled bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Jet black with a sandy brown foamy head.

S: Coffee, licorice, and more so fennel spices. The toasted flavors are terrific but I can do with out that spicy twing.

T: Coffee and chocolate predominantly. Some fennel which I would rather not be there but its more through the nose. Could really go with some more chocolate malts and less of the licorice.

M: The thinnest, lightest imperial I can remember, but the intensity doesnt have to be overpowering. Some creaminess when warmed down.

D: High ratings and easy as hell to drink. For the style, one you can have a few of and not feel completely grogged out. Not bad and worth the effot.

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Photo of tviz33
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of windypete
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of treyrab
3.88/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass

A: Extremely dark with a nice brown head that laces. Similar in look to most any RIS.

S: Very strong with coffee and cocoa along with noticeable dark fruits

T: The taste is very strong, which I live. Tons of coffee in the flavor along with some chocolate. The hops are definitely present as well with a nice bitterness

M,D: The mouthfeel is rather thick, with a little lack of carbonation on this one. Overall, decent brew, but not one of my favorite SS.

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Photo of phisig137
3.99/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Pours a light balck color, with some brown showing around the edges. A thick head quickly forms, and slowly falls, leaving a rim around the glass.

Aroma is full of vanilla, dark roasted malt, a bit of hops and oddly a bit over ripe banana.

Flavor tastes quite vanilla-ey, chocolate and coffee. Has hints of oak aged flavor. Mouthfeel is a bit thin for the style, but drinkability is high.

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Photo of BobZ
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of taigor
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of seakayak
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Imperial Stout from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
Beer rating: 4.16 out of 5 with 3,802 ratings