Narwhal Imperial Stout | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

BA SCORE
93
outstanding
5,046 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
Narwhal Imperial StoutNarwhal Imperial Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States
sierranevada.com

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by JohnGalt1 on 10-14-2012

BEER STATS
Ratings:
5,046
Reviews:
932
Avg:
4.15
pDev:
9.64%
 
 
Wants:
331
Gots:
1,446
For Trade:
38
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 5,046 |  Reviews: 932
Photo of Wamba
4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Chackman151
4.09/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Timc32
4.09/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of Marzen_Fan
3.98/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of jwilcox767
4.46/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Awesome stout, not something i expected from Sierra Nevada only having had their ipa. This brew is very well balanced and the 10.2 abv is well hidden in the dense maltiness. Mine was only 4 months old, so it was quite crisp, probably could have aged it for a bit.

 266 characters

Photo of SaltofOH
4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle dated 11-1-16. Guinness pint.

A: pours an opaque black with two fingers dark tan rocky head. Carbonation clinging to sides of glass visible. Nice lacing

S: sweet, roasty malt. Hint of dark fruit, hops.

T: lightly roasted flavor, dark chocolate, loads of rich malt, lingering hoppiness.

M: medium full bodied with moderate carbonation (high for the style), less slickness than typical.

O: this is killer beer. Reminds me of Old Rasputin the first time I had it. Less alcohol with 10.2 than some RIS's I've had with 9. Worth a 4 pack.

 546 characters

Photo of FatsoSvuLLo
3.82/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of travelguy
4.27/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of TripleSun
3.9/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottle dated 8/17/16 poured into a snifter

L - Black hole dark and poured with no head
S - Heavy bitter chocolate nose, accompanied by dark fruit
T - First thing noticed is the dark roast coffee taste, followed by a sort of sweetness.
F - Mild carbonation and no taste of alcohol

Very good addition to Sierra Nevada beers I do say. I'm a big bitter chocolate lover so this hits the spot.

 390 characters

Photo of Gbert1231
4.78/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 5

Has nice body doesn't over well u at first taste but washes over your tongue pleasantly with the hint of smoke and coffee at the end.

133 characters

Photo of DallasK
4.4/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of RBorsato
4.82/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of bigpoppa67
4.24/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of GregSemenza
4.19/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Satorn
3.5/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of akolb
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Rich coffee and chocolate aroma. Some dark fruit. Deep, wonderful tastes packed with roasted malts, coffee and chocolate. Moderate body and some creaminess.

 156 characters

Photo of Rilesmiles
4.02/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of TrueOregonian
4.28/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Biggtriksta
4.37/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Pitch black. Sludge-like. Poured pretty aggressively and was able to get about half a finger of dark, creamy head on top. Absolutely no light coming through the glass. Looks great.

S: Chocolate, coffee, dark roasted malts, molasses, maybe a little vanilla. Second time brought most of the roastiness to the forefront followed by a smooth chocolaty finish.

T: Delicious. Lots of dark roasted malts in the taste. Some dark chocolate sweetness and a little bit of coffee. Mostly I am getting the roasted characteristics. The alcohol is hidden very well for it being over 10%.

F: Thick and creamy. No heat on the way down from the alcohol. It's surprisingly smooth considering how thick and sludgy it looks.

O: This is a classic, massive stout. It's everything that I look for in a non-barrel-aged stout. It's thick, creamy, and roasty, but it finishes with nice smoothness and sweetness.

 891 characters

Photo of dcmchew
4.08/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of ccg
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Narwhal looks dense. There is a rather fizzy head that fades quickly, leaving the beer looking somewhat flat.
The smell is dark, roasted malt, of course, but I'm also smelling something salty, like brine. Also, a bit of licorice in the background.
The flavor follows pretty close. It's not quite as bitter as I expected after smelling it. Hops and malt are well balanced. There's still a sort of brine flavor in background along with some licorice.
For it feel, there's some oiliness, medium body, and very mild carbonation.
It's a well-rounded stout, and worth trying if you enjoy stouts. Personally, I prefer Yeti and Ten Fidy, but I think it comes down to preferences in flavor profile.

 689 characters

Photo of princessbay710
4.84/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Very reminess of the recent Divine Reserve 17 by St. Arnolds. Basically a rich cocoa stout with some java undertones. Pour is dark black with dark milk chocolate foam. Taste is much bolder than it's smells and shockingly covers it's 10.20% well enough to convince anyone that it's a malty - milk drink. Love it!

 311 characters

Photo of HotDogBikeRide
4.73/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Yeahhh! Got my hands on a pretty cheap, 5 month old 4-pack of Narwhal by the beloved Sierra Nevada. Just recently had a wonderful Divine Reserve 17 by St. Arnold, and lo and behold my favorite Texas brewery just happened to be doing a collaboration with one of my favorite U.S. breweries of all time.

That isn't this beer of course, but I've been waiting for the chance to grab a big beer (especially a good stout) and also a Sierra Nevada beer, this absolutely blew me away, just like the latest Divine Reserve. Killing two birds with one stone.

Midnight black color with a creamy brown head. Luscious lacing fills the walls around the glass. Pinky head maintained for 10 minutes. Roasted malt smell, a little less smelly then I'd have thought it would be but very clean just like SN is known for.

Nice refreshing, wet mouth full of awesome beer. Straight up malty cocoa and a bit of coffee give this strong beer most of its legs. No alcohol present at all which is pretty crazy considering it has as much as some wines do. A little bit of hops, earthy perhaps? Maybe it's just the roasted biscuit from the malt. Really fresh tasting even 5 months after being brewed

Great pair with pizza and tater tots haha. (What doesn't go good with pizza and tater tots?) I don't mind paying for just a four pack when the alcohol is this high. Plenty of bang for your buck and the beer is on top of its game with the best of the style. Will definitely drink this one again. Love it.

 1,476 characters

Photo of Bum4ever
4.67/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of needMIbeer
4.48/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Narwhal Imperial Stout from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
4.15 out of 5 based on 5,046 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.

    Learn More
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.

    Learn More
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.

    Learn More