Morimoto Imperial Pilsner | Rogue Ales

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Morimoto Imperial PilsnerMorimoto Imperial Pilsner

Brewed by:
Rogue Ales
Oregon, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Pilsner

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
4 Ingredients:
Malts: 100% French Pilsner.
Hops: 100% Sterling.
Yeast & Water: Czech Pils Yeast & Free Range Coastal Water.

74 IBU
80 AA
16º Lovibond

Added by aracauna on 08-24-2003

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Reviews: 332 | Ratings: 563
Photo of cvm4
3.83/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Awesome looking bottle!

A - Pours a lovely crisp golden yellow. Pretty transparent. The top develops into a bubbly white head.

S - Crisp malts, sweet honey and somewhat grassy.

T - A bit hoppy for a pilsner. Nice grassy/grain notes with a pileup of flavors in the end.

M - Medium bodied, easy drinker.

O - Pretty much what I expected. When the bottle says imperial pilsner, you think pilsner kicked up a notch. I'm usually not a fan of Rogue but this is a good one and could lead others from the BMC category.

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Photo of MacQ32
3.73/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a hazy straw/slightly orange color into my brooklyn snifter with a nice dense head of very near white head that slowly dissipates and leaves behind excellent lacing

S - A fairly rich malt character, very grassy herbal hop aromas. Definitely getting some sweeter fruit smells as well which is a little surprising.

T - Traditional lighter pilsner malts with a mostly earthy/grassy hop aroma. Pretty good but one of my favorite things about a pilsner is the dry grassy finish. There are definite mildly tart/funk fruit tastes from what I can only presume to be the yeast which kind of spoils it a little for me. I did not expect that from a pils.

M - Appropriate carbonation (pretty well carbonate, which i would expect from a pilsner). Definitely less than medium bodied @ 8.8% which is pretty impressive.

O - I have only had one other imperial pilsner that i can recall, it was a (local) Holy City Trippin Brick and it was amazing. After having my first rogue xs (imperial IPA) and being totally blown away i was pretty pumped for this one.. although this is definitely a decent brew, there is no way I will ever pay 16.99 for this one again, the bottle alone is awesome and worth at least $7 or $8 I would think but this beer just wasnt quite special enough for me to spend that kind of money on 2 brews. Again, the review is based on quality not taking price into consideration. I'm giving it a 3.5 because taste is most important, and it was sadly my least favorite part of this one.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.88/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the large bottle into both a Pokal and a Pilsner style glass.

A brassy gold yellow, mostly 18 carat in color, slightly dull not totally clear but close, kind of buttery. Nice mix of slow rising cola carbonation, and a shocking white top. Left over scattered lacing as the head slowly settles, pretty good looking.

Even off the pour aromas fill the room. Sticky malts, little honey sweetness, subdued crispness with a large density and no alcohol heat at all. Small airy bitterness, but nothing too extreme.

Taste is a big ambush. Good god is this ever hoppy. Grassy, even almost a little oily finish of hop green rush and pine. Rushing resin and pine finish, no sweetness hinted that comes from the nose. A strong strange sticky yeast sensation also.

Overall not even a taste of alcohol heat, but it's a one trick pony beer, but boy what a trick it is. It gets strangely a bit more interesting as it warms up which is not how I would want this style. But regardless this is one impressive pilsner and it's quite shocking they pulled this off.

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Photo of jgreenearrow
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml ceramic bottle into a pilsner glass.

A: The beer pours a slightly amber golden color with a thick, fluffy white foam forming at the top of the pour. Substantial lacing remains on the sides of the glass.

S: The aroma is very sweet. Grapefruit, tangerine, and grape juice dominate the nose. Some slight earthiness is also present.

T: The beer is quite sweet at the onset of the sip. Apricot, plum, and tangerine dominate the start of the sip. The typical Rogue yeast flavor profile is on queue. Wheat and grain enters in the middle followed by some bitterness in the finish. Some slight alcohol burn trails the sip, but is well masked.

M: The beer is medium bodied with nice carbonation. It drinks quite easily.

Overall, this is an excellent beer. The flavor profile is complex and bold, as one would expect from an imperial. The aroma and mouthfeel accompany the flavor very well to create an enjoyable beer. The ceramic bottle with the resealable top add a nice touch, although entirely unnecessary.

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Photo of ummswimmin
3.53/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I like some of these new styles where ale type hops are added to a pilsner. The Japanese influence is also a great new approach.

I got a fluted glass of this in my local bar. The beer was a hazy, straw color. There was a couple fingers of very light head on top. The foam was very light in color.

The smell was kind of different. It was kind of flowery off the top. I got some sweetness, and the bouquet had fruitiness. I didn't expect this blend of smells.

The flavor was equally light. I would say that this would fit in on a warm spring day. The blend of flavors were very interesting. I feel like I get some white grape. It was almost like a soft grape gum taste. On the back end I got some venous quality.

This is a good beer. It was a different experience from any other beer I have had.

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Photo of ales4baldo
3.95/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

P-Seems to have a Japanese presentation. Imperial pilsner for an imperial country.

A-Has a nice cloudy orange cloudy look to it. Nice and foggy as well. Didn't have any head to it.

S-Smells like its a form of rice water diluted in honey. I get a lot of honey smell in here. Tons of malts and a little bit of hops.

T-A huge flavor of honey and sugar. Strong malts and Czech yeast. A strong pale ale. Get that bitter finish.

M-Seems to be a medium to full bodied beer. Lots of flavor for sure. Nice lemon and herb notes. Little orange. Somewhat like a saison.

O-A good beer. A good pilsner with lots of flavor. Nice body to it as well.

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Photo of BeersCriteria
4.33/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a nice golden color with a white head.

S- Floral and citrus aroma with a sweet honey scent.

T- A very good balance of sweet pineapple-like taste and a ripened grapefruit bitterness. The alcohol is well masked as well. Best pilsner hands down!

Food Pairing- Grilled fish tacos or a pineapple empanada.

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Photo of mrfrancis
4.2/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a cloudy gold with a creamy white head. Looks like a quality pilsner.

S: Aromas of lemon, cream, caramel, and honey are present on the nose. Typical pilsner aromas, but a bit more assertive.

T: Opens tart and hoppy with notes of lemon, grass, straw, grapefruit, and kumquats, but quickly mellows to display malty flavors of cream, honey, minerals, and caramel. The finish is long and tart with notes of grass and citrus dominating.

M: Crisp, dry, and full-bodied with active carbonation.

O: I tend to dislike strong lagers, but this one was a pleasant surprise. Easily the best lager I've tried from Rogue.

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Photo of ChugginOil
3.88/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy yellow color with ample white head thats stacked. Ample lacing to match.

The nose brings grassy hops, alcohol, and a tad bit of malt.

The taste is very interesting. Grassy hoos are melded with a good amount of booze. A bit of a corn taste is noticed in the background after the booze has mellowed.

The mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

Overall, havent had too many nice pilsners but this is certainly one of them.

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Photo of July2Nov
4.2/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Hazy, Golden in color. Smallish head that minimizes to a good lacing around the edges. Btw...the bottle is pretty kickass too.

Smell: Mild amount of hops that melds well with the malts and a great citrus bouquet.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Good funky taste at first, grassy hops really come out with a wee bit of alcohol on the end tip. It's a pretty even-keel beer that doesn't have any peaks or valleys, but it sustains it's flavor profile during it all. Really impressed with this offering.

Overall: Pretty much love all of the Rogue beers that come in the ceramic bottles and this one is no different.

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Photo of SawDog505
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice beer, very over priced. Yellowish with a huge fluffy white head. Smell is solid, but for $16.99 better blow me away if I am going to purchase twice. Taste is better and more bitter then smell. Mouthfeel is very solid. Overall nice beer in my opinion, but step back and improve the price. I would have gotten into more detail, but my kids prevented me from writing as I was drinking.

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Photo of ktrillionaire
4.1/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The brew pours a slightly hazy golden straw hue, and is capped with a good bit of soapy froth. Lemongrass and bright citrus hop notes are noted in the nose and upon the palate, and sit upon a light, pale grainy malt base. The whole thing is very smooth, with a nice mouthfeel, fairly refreshing and sans indication of the high ABV. Overall, fairly delicious, and better than most Rogue brews.

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Photo of dgilks
3.53/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear golden colour with a moderate, creamy white head. Nice lacing and decent head retention.

Sweet malt aroma with a touch of spirit. A touch grainy.

Sweet, somewhat syrupy malt with a firm bitterness and a touch of fruitiness from stressed yeast.

Medium-full body with moderately low carbonation. Fine.

This is an interesting beer. I appreciate what they've done here but for me it's a touch to syrupy and sweet.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.7/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured out as a pretty clear looking golden yellow color. The head was white and fluffy at first, as it settled the lacing was light and didn't do too much. The smell of the beer wasn't overly grassy which I was happy about. The aromas were a little grainy and hoppy. The taste was better than expected, the flavors of some sweeter malts were upfront that faded into a subtle bitterness at the end. The mouthfeel was pretty slick, not too heavy or overly carbonated. Overall this beer wasn't too bad, best of the Morimoto series that I've had for sure.

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Photo of cburnsc1
4.8/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I am a hop head at heart and that is why I could not believe the extent with which I would love this beer.

The colour was obviously golden being that it is a pilsener; this is where any similarity to the style would stop however. But wait, the colour isn't like that of a pilsener at all, it's more of a deep golden similar to a belgiam golden ale, beautiful and haunting.

The taste is malty and sweet up front followed by a crisp bitter finish. Like many of the Rouge brews in my opinion there is an almost earthy feel that is left to linger.

Overall this beer is amazing, but if your like me you think that 16.99 is too much for a 750ml. Rouge if you care at all take them out of those ceramic's and let the people enjoy them.


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Photo of Zadok
4.15/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a pale yellow with a one finger head head. Not much to look at.

Not a big nose as well, light hops and mild citrus.

Taste is somewhat surprising based on the first two categories. Heavy hops with a nice bitter bite. Citrus intermingled throughout. Hop bite hangs around for a good duration between each sip. While there is a great flavor explosion it doesn't seem very balanced, which doesn't have to be a bad thing I guess.

Mouth feel is smooth with mild carbonation, somewhat tingly on the palette. Decently high abv sneaks up on you a bit.

Overall I was pretty surprised with what a tasty brew this was, I guess what else can you expect from such a great brewery.

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Photo of raszputini
3.98/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Wow. I was surprised by this beer. I'm not really a pilsner guy, but this one was highly recommended. From he tap, iot pours golden with a dry hopped nose. Very thin mouthfeel. Starts like a pilsner, finishes like a malty IPA, with a hoppy finish that is uncharacteristic of a pilsner but is necessary because of the ABV. I really enjoyed this brew.

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Photo of SkeeterHawk
3.84/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I actually thought that I had reviewed this beer, so I haven't been getting it every time that I see it. Well, the other day I just decided that this would be a good beer to drink again and low-and-behold, I haven't reviewed it. Well, here we go:

Appearance: Pours a pretty hazy dark pee-colored yellow with a small cap of small white bubbles on top after a pretty quick pour. After a minute, there was still a pretty substantial ring of foam around the edge of the glass, so there must be quite a few bubbles rising.

Aroma: I initially got a pretty healthy dose of Saaz hops along with some toasty and slightly biscuity Pilsner malt. As the beer sits a bit, there is some sweetness that I think is just from the Pilsner malt, but it is nice. There is definitely hops in here, but they aren't dry or chalky at all, so the water is supporting it too. So far so good...

Taste: The flavor is a good bit hoppier than I thought that it would be from the aroma. There is a solid bitterness that you can feel right after you take the sip and it stays in charge until very late after the sip in the finish. Late after the sip, there is some alcohol coming out and warming things up on the back of the throat and even adding a tad of spice. The second or third sip is starting to show some malt presence. I am getting a little bit of toasty bread crusts and some caramel sweetness, but that is about it.

Opinion: This is a pretty good beer. It is a bit aggressive on the hops where I really don't think that it needs to be and this pushes it out of the Pilsner feel for me overall. It is more like an Imperial IPA with German Ingredients. I will certainly finish the whole thing, but it will be a while before I decide I need to try this again.

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Photo of Haybeerman
3.58/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Hazy gold color. Poured a 3 finger rocky white head with excellent retention. Decanted lazily lots of slow rising bubbles. Laced in patches.

S: Doughy malt. Light citrus/fruit aroma offset with grassy and peppery hops.

T: Big doughy malt up front. Transitions quickly into a lemon and grass bitter. Though starting sweet, finish was dry. Had some alcohol character.

M: Medium body. Ample carbonation. Dry and warm with a lingering bitter.

D: Big malty and bitter hoppy beer; made it balance. ABV a little daunting. It was pricey too.

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Photo of ffejherb
4.77/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at Brass Rail Deli on 2/7/11.

A - Slightly hazy golden body with lots of tiny slow-risning bubbles and some larger bubbles that raced to the top of the glass. Very effervescent! Sitting on top is two fingers worth of bright white foam that settled into a quarter inch of retention and produced some sticky lacing on the sides of the glass.

S - Fruity aroma with doughy malt sweetness, although the nose is very citrus-forward. There is also a hint of grassy hops, toasted grains and sweet herbs in the mix, as well as a touch of white grape character akin to a sweet wine.

T - The initial flavor is very citrusy with an almost lemon-lime character that is sweet with a hint of mild tartness. This gives way to an assertive hoppy finish that is quite citrusy with grassy and sweet herbal notes. The hop character is backed by toasted grains and a sweet biscuity malt.

M - Medium bodied with an oily texture and lively carbonation. Dry, crisp and bitter with with some sweetness on the palate. Finishes with a crisp, lingering hop bite.

D - Morimoto is an amazing Imperial Pils. Loved it! This is a huge Pils hop bomb that still retains its crispness and drinkability, which is what I really love about the pilsner style. This one just adds a ton of hops, which makes it all the more tasty. Plus this wasn't as alcoholic as some other Imperial Pils I've had in the past. No alcohol sting, but plenty of hop sting!

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Photo of Donnie2112
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured into a shakers pint

appearance: Cloudy yellow that fades into a amber in the thick parts of the the glass, fluffy white head that laces nicely

smells: Pretty decent, sugary maltiness with a bit of an herbal hop back. Has an overall floral affect.

taste: Malts are clean and sweet, the flavors are sugary, there is not pronounced presence of yeast flavor and the hops are bitter, pronounced and create an overall floral affect. The whole experience is clean and continues with the floral theme I spoke of in the nose.

MF: Smooth, nice carbonation, not water thin like American Lagers nor as full in body as some other imperial styles.

Very solid beer, tasty, the hops are the star while maintaining that this style is fundamentally supposed to be subtle.

That said, I don't think this beer is worth the money that you pay for it, I've felt this before that Rogue makes very solid brews for way too much money.

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Photo of Swimsum
3.93/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Review found in an old notebook. Growler into pilsner glass, growler filled 7/15/09 and kept cold since. Consumed on 8/10/09

Poured out a nice golden color. No hiss when opening made when opening the growler (screw top) me worry but small head emerges. Head is white and texture is very loose (made up of tiny bubbles). Body is pretty clear and can see carbonation. A bright yellow gold color in light. Head settles to thin layer and eventually is gone, no lacing is left on the glass.

Bread malt smell with some sweetness and hops. Normal pilsner smell to me. Sorry can't do a better description but pilsners aren't my favorite style.

Like the smell, there is a bready taste with a bitter finish. Slight alcohol taste but isn't over powering in the finish. I'm not sure what it is but I get a sweet taste before the bitter taste. Perhaps just some malt sweetness. Even though it isn't that complex I enjoy the taste of this beer a lot.

Pretty low carbonation (maybe due to sitting in a growler that wasn't filled to the top for 3 weeks). Thin mouthfeel, what carbonation is there is noticeable on the lips but not the tongue. The alcohol taste doesn't leave any harshness in the throat.

I really like this beer, pretty easy to put a whole 750 back and my roommate and I burned through the growler I had pretty quickly. The price of the bottle may turn some away, but if you can get it fresh (on tap/growler) I'd give it a shot.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.65/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a nice yellow golden color with good carbonation and a nice white head

S: Sweet corn, grains, hints of light fruit

T: A little booze sting, corn sweetness and grains. A bit bitter at times, sordove musty

M: Sweet and a hints of booze, medium to light body on this but well carbonated

D: Average to good

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Photo of champ103
1.81/5  rDev -55.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

A: Pours a clear straw yellow color. A one finger white head forms, but recedes in a minute. Little lace is left behind.
S: Musky, dank, like old wet clothes. There is nothing else here that I can find that is appealing.
T: Similar to the nose. Just dank, musky wet clothes. A nasty funkiness. I did not enjoy this at all.
M/D: A light body that is thin and lifeless. I finished this as fast as I could. Nothing I ever care to drink again.

I am not impressed to say the least. Take away the fact that an Imperial Pilsner is an oxymoron, this is just bad in any regard. Sorry, but a big miss, and something that I will avoid if I ever see it again.

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4.23/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slightly hazed golden tangerine. Big frothy cream-colored head. Nice thick lacing.

Fruity pear. Lemon zest. Floral. Citrus, grass, herbal. Slight toastiness. bready yeast.

Herbal, citrus, floral, lemon. Hint of chocolate, vanilla, toastiness. Nice bitterness.

Refreshing. med body, high for style. Slightly dry and sticky.

Tasty and refreshing. Great imperial pils. Hoppy and bitter.

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Morimoto Imperial Pilsner from Rogue Ales
4.05 out of 5 based on 563 ratings.
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