Red Hill Imperial Stout | Red Hill Brewery

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Red Hill Imperial StoutRed Hill Imperial Stout
Very Good
31 Ratings
Red Hill Imperial StoutRed Hill Imperial Stout

Brewed by:
Red Hill Brewery

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.10%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by norwichboy on 11-21-2006

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 31 |  Reviews: 23
Reviews by norwichboy:
Photo of norwichboy
3.68/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Red Hill Brewery, which they say is the only place it is available. Although they call it a seasonal release, it was on a pretty hot day in late spring that I drank this, so I can only presume this was a leftover from winter.

Poured into a snifter. Opaque brown-black with a big thick creamy biege stout head, with very good retention and lacing that clings to the glass. To smell, roasted malt around the caramel end of the spectrum with a lot of fruit aromas. Tasting reveals more coffee flavoured roasted malts with rather strong bitterness. Good length. Mouthfeel is smooth and full bodied, in balance with a light carbonation. Not a half bad stout indeed. My favourite over their three regular beers - what a shame you can only get it at the brewery!

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More User Reviews:
Photo of jbowers56
3.45/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

a) 2 fingers of beige head. Very dark colour, almost completely black.

s) coffee smell, typical stout in that sense. Also notes of fruits, perhaps sweet plum.

t) an interesting progression for a stout. Starts with the usual coffee/roasted malt richness but then lifts right up with a berry kind of taste. This dies down which is followed by a fairly typical roasted malty/alcohol warmth finish.

m) For me it is a bit light bodied for an imperial stout, with just a touch too much carbonation. That's just personal though. It's not over the top in either sense and im sure many would enjoy the mouthfeel.

d) average for the style.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.45/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours black with a fading large tan head.
Aroma is a bit of a dissapointment at first, I was expecting more, but later on it improves. Quite sweet with plenty of treacle, liquorice and molasses. Underneath is a hint of roasted malt, coffee and smoke.
Flavours are quite different with much more roasted malt, smoke and some woody notes. Alcohol follows, a little hot and powerful. Too sharp, not rich enough.
Carbontion seems too high, the body is too light.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
4/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of eric5bellies
3.08/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Drank from my Duvel tulip glass

A - Not quite the pitch black colour with a tanned head that reduces quickly to a film

S - Mostly chocolate and coffee but not too pronounced.

T - Nice vanilla flavours followed by a touch of molassis. Thei finish is licorice with a long bitter finish.

M - Medium to full body and low carbonation.

O - A solid stout without blowing your mind. Lacks a little in body.

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Photo of NeoClassicist
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%

Photo of papat444
3.89/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to triple5 for this one.

Poured from a 330ml. bottle.

Appearance: A thin ring of foam (dark tan) covers a murky brown body that poured quite thick.

Smell: Wafting aroma of dark chocolate, toffee (Crunchie bar), plums (?) and lots of coffee. Very inviting.

Taste: Strong mocha coffee, toffee notes permeate with dark chocolate in the background and coffee cream to round things out.

Mouthfeel: Low point. While there is a smooth creaminess, the pervasive carbonation wins out and is distracting a bit.

Overall: This beer would have scored higher if not for the carbonation. Still, a worthy stout and worth your time.

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Photo of joecast
3.43/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

pop the cap and i am greeted by a surprisingly sharp pfft! dont need to worry about carbonation with this stout. black as anything with a dark tan head. excellent retention, the fine 10mm layer of foam sticks around for a good long while.

wonderfully sweet malty aroma that includes some alcohol as it warms. dark fruits, prunes, slightly vinous. maybe too much sweetness which takes away from the rest.

a few sips and you can feel the alcohol warming the belly and breath. strong concentrated maltiness without being overly sweet. this sort of gives it an almost sour twang and the two dont mix all that well imo. seems to be missing something in the middle leaving the malt/coffee flavors a bit harsh.

a bit disappointed but at least i wont miss the other one sitting in the cellar for a while.

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Photo of Macca
3.98/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This pours a jet black colour with a decent size head.

Obvious coffee and roasty maltiness on the nose.

Coffee continues on the palate as does the burnt bitterness from the malt.

The alcohol is very evident. For me the carbonation is far too high. A lean beer.

Revisited this for the 2010 release.

I don't know if my palate has changed (quite possibly) or if they have changed the recipe but I think I really get this beer now.

It looks great all broody and black with a solid tan head.

Still not a totally sold on the nose because I get a bit too much stewed fruit where I'd like more chocolate (there a little) and coffee (can't find it).

It's on the palate and in mouthfeel where it really kicks goals now.

Some nice alcohol warmth, some bitter chocolate and a full mouthfeel.


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Photo of mulder1010
3.8/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

330 ML poured into a tulip

A-- Poured reddish black, settled black. No light at all penetrating through. Very thin, short lived dark brown head. Wants to be a touch over film.

S-- Roasted malts, coffee, licorice, and molasses. Not as big a smell as other RIS's but as it warms up the nose gets bigger.

T-- Bitter coffee or espresso with a bit of sweet licorice in the front. Also get some sweetness in the taste, molasses.

M-- A bit over carbonated but that is it. On the lighter side of heavy. Bitter coffee does smooth out a bit and the licorice drops off some. Sweetness does come in more at the end. Gets bolder as it gets warmer.

D-- More in line with say a Samuel Smith RIS. Good drinkability at 8%. Only real fault I can say is the over carbonation. Have had on tap at brewery and thought it was a bit thin. Beer is showing to get better with age

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Photo of adityashekhar
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%

Photo of RMW66
3.79/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of koolk
4.05/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Vintage 08

Tough black colour with a tan head that persists.

Brooding aromas of chocolate malt, some rummish notes as well as some dried fruits. Very nice.

Palate also contains large doses of chocolate with some nicely roasted coffee flavour in the background. Good firm bitterness. Some warming, but bugger all and in effect really hides the alcohol well. Great mocha after taste.

Top mouthfeel typical of Red Hill. Very full, creamy and round. Great balance. Very easy to drink.

At over 8% this is a real creeper. Strong well balanced and really enjoyable.

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Photo of belgbeerdrinker
3.73/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: solid black color with nice brown head that settles to thin ring around edges, little lacing
s: a bit tough to smell this one, but get whiff of roasted malts and the slightest mocha aroma
t: sweet malty taste, warming alcohol that lingers and chocolate
m: smooth drink with a nice carbonated finish, creamy body
d: tried this at same time as red duck imperial stout, ox. while both beers have their own strengths, i did enjoy red hill's a bit more as it had a more balanced taste, with more carbonation and creamy body.

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Photo of laituegonflable
3.87/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark, dark colour, mostly black, but - oh no, it falls down at the edge, dark mahogany, not even needing to hold it up to the light to get that - there's a fail. Head is ochre and quite thick, but visibly foamy. Retains well - lacing is pretty disappointing actually, for a stout, thin and not all that sticky. But definitely dig the retention.

Nose is spicy and dark. First whiff is peppery and cinnamony, and it's only when that has past that one gets the dark roasty malt, burnt toast and oak characters. Also a fair amount of brandy on there, with noticeable alcomohol, plus a slight hazelnut edge. Yeah, very pleasant, interesting nose, with a lot to like.

Taste starts quite spicy and phenolic, with peppery notes, some cinnamon and raisin, gets quite a lot darker towards the mid-palate, with notes of cane sugar but also some licks of espresso and cocoa. Distinct nutty notes on the back give off some hazelnut and marzipan, as well as some woody notes. If there is a criticism - and there is, and here it comes - it's that there's not enough darkness to it. As an RIS it could use more roasty, burnt characters. It does have nice stout notes but it just leaves me wanting more.

Mouthfeel actually a bit thin for what it is. Rough texture shows there's plenty of body to it, but for the flavour I expected it a bit stickier.

Very pleasant overall. Enjoyable Imp. Stout from a decent brewer.

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Photo of wordemupg
4.39/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500ml foil wrapped bottle that comes in a black gift bag poured into tulip April,28 2011

A nearly jet black with only a little cola at the edges of the glass when held to the light, two fingers of thick mocha head that slowly falls to a thin film that leaves just a couple random patches of lace

S plenty of dark chocolate with some smoke, molasses, raisin, and coffee, very faint booze and maybe some licorice

T some dark fruit on top of what I smell, the faint booze I could smell is just not there in the mouth, the chocolate is now milk opposed to dark and I now have no doubt about licorice but it's faint, supper mellow brew with a nice mix of dark malts and a truly tasty brew and 4.75 would have been dropped if it was a option, nearly perfect

M a little thinner then I expected considering how dark it was but well carbonated and the bubbles give it a creamy feel

O would make a great session if it wasn't for the 8%alc, pretty well rounded and very easy to down

this is the limited edition vintage release of the imperial stout from 2008 from what I've been told, bottle 1 of 100 and I need to thank Kate for hauling this one across the planet for me, I wasn't sure if this was a completely different beer from the regular version so I put it under this one

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Photo of Gasc0igne
3.5/5  rDev -8.4%

Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.9/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a dark, opaque brown-black, with an initially full head of toasted brown foam, that cascades with the pour. Some dissipation, but very good lacing. Looks full, dark, and pretty heavy.

Big, roasted nose - lots of dark grain and toasted sweetness. Slightly over-boozy, with whiffs of phenolic chemicals layering over the top, with a sweet vanilla note as well. It's a heady aroma, to be sure, with a nice conglomeration of booze, sweetness, and roasted, dark devilish blackness.

Taste starts quite softly, but wells up with a bitter black character, before softening to a dark rum-soaked raisin sweetness on the back. Finish creeps up with a dry, almost acrid ashy character appearing some seconds after the initial sip. Mouthfeel is certainly not as silky and mercurial as the best examples, but the flavours are right, and are very well integrated. It's not the most complex of examples, but it's got all the elements there.

A very drinkable impy stout, rich and dark and sinuous, as though it's luring you in for the punch. This is a good example, with nothing out of character. Sure, it could be more intense, more extreme and in your face. But this is what Red Hill does right to me - good beers done well stylistically.

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Photo of personpitch
3.49/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Photo of bylerteck
3.49/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle at Beer Deluxe. From notes.

A - Poured black with one finger of dark brown head. No lace and a film of retention.

S - Chocolate, hopes, iced coffee, milk chocolate, and a fair bit of roast.

T - Chocolate, bit of booze, dusty, alcohol, and more chocolate.

M - Medium carbonation, medium to full body, sweet and dry finish.

O/D - Pretty standard. Nothing exceptional. Nice flavours going on but indistinguishable from other average Imperial Stouts. Well crafted and tasty but lacking complexity.

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Photo of ADZA
4.2/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looking forwards to this and it pours a jet black hue which lets no light in whatsoever with average carbonation that leaves behind a cappicino laced one finger head and lacing here and there,the smell is bourbon,coffee,dark belgian chocolate and xmas pudding,it has a lucious silky smooth full bodied mouthfeel and has tastes of dark bittersweet chocolate,a touch of bourbon,dark berries,roasty malts and finished with a cappicino bittersweet finish and overall this is one nice Aussie RIS and i would drink this again without hesitation and definately recommend for these cold winter nights.

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Photo of aBeeraWeek
4.48/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter glass from tap at Beer DeLuxe Melbourne Australia.

Pours very dark, almost pitch black with a nice sheen. Head is tan couloured and holds well.

Smell is distinctively of chocolate and coffee. There is also a malty caramel sweetness.

The chocolate and coffee comes through on the taste. Less sweetness with a strong dark chocolate bitterness coming through.

Mouthfeel is creamy and medium bodied with a little carbonation. I feel that with less carbonation delightful velvet creaminess would have been accentuated.

Overall a great beer. Will try the next one with a chocolate dessert.

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Photo of biglite351
3.94/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

A - zero light through this brew. Tall dark creamy head.

S - roasted.malts with a touch of coffee and chocolate.

D - very nice roasted malts. A bit of coffee, but just a hint. Some chocolates in the finish.

M - creamy coating but very little tingle.

D - I could drink this all night.

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Photo of heygeebee
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A VERY aggressive pour - Pours a one finger head. Black n Tan. Fades quite quickly.

Aromas mainly of roast malt. Hint of dark chocolate.

Taste is oh so smooth. What a difference and step up to the aromas. Usual choclate and hint of coffee to fore. Quite sweet. Some bitterness on back palate. Alcohol well hidden.

Mouthfeel spot on. No oiliness, but low carbonation.

Very well made beer. Despite my wishing to rate accordingly to style and not 'High for RIS and Double IPA' it still gets my nod, purely on flavour.

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Red Hill Imperial Stout from Red Hill Brewery
Beer rating: 3.82 out of 5 with 31 ratings