Narwhal Imperial Stout | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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93
outstanding
5,051 Ratings
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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:
5,051
Reviews:
932
Avg:
4.15
pDev:
9.64%
 
 
Wants:
331
Gots:
1,445
For Trade:
37
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,051 |  Reviews: 932
Photo of leaddog
4.21/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2016 edition at 10.2%.

Appearance - Pours a chocolate brown/black with two fingers of bubbly mocha head.

Smell - Roasted malts, cocoa, coffee bean, earthy and leafy hops, hint of vanilla bean.

Taste - Flavourful roasted notes from the malts, coffee bean and cocoa flavours, along with a touch of the hops. Slightest bit of alcohol, but quite low.

Mouthfeel - Medium-to-full bodied with low-to-moderate carbonation. Warmth from the alcohol. Very smooth.

Overall - Sierra Nevada delivers a very flavourful imperial stout with easy drinkability (so dangerous!). The roasted malt profile is well executed, along with the coffee bean and cocoa flavours. Could easily make it into my winter rotation.

 699 characters

Photo of JohnTurano
4.16/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of ChipChaight
4.04/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz bottle from Noble Grains NYC on the UES
Pours almost fully opaque black with no head, smells like boozy molasses with hints of roasted coffee, chocolate syrup, and cocoa, taste like sweet creamy dark roasted malts, hints of caffe latte, mild booze, finishes with mellow bitter chocolate that lingers, feel is creamy medium bodied. A solid imperial stout!

 359 characters

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

Poured into snifter. Thin head ring, a faint swirl of lace. Dark cola, almost opaque.

Roasty nose.

Dark chocolate bitterness, a little boozy, roasted nuts, coffee, dark fruit notes.

Mouth is dry and a tad warm, though not too warm on the finish.

A good, standard RIS. Imperial strength and darkness, and subtle depth of character. Nicely done, Sierra Nevada.

 362 characters

Photo of mrosenfeld32
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of jrsqc7
4.09/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Beautiful deep deep brown with a medium brown (not khaki!!!) head.

Smell is boozy and overripe fruit. The malt bomb blooms upon sipping; rye and winter wheat? There is a quiet hop undertone providing pine and citrus flavors.

excellent!

 241 characters

Photo of jmaskell33
3.92/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Kuges
4.04/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of danasofia
4.68/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Appearance - opaque brown/black, slight amber brown around the edges when held up to light.

Aroma - Bitter cocoa, coffee, sweet caramel, faint nutty aromas

Taste - Deep bitter cocoa, coffee in the background, less caramel than the aroma, slight dark fruit and berries, little bit of vanilla.

Feel - Viscous and syrupy, very smooth and appealing.

Overall - Very sweet, but not offensively so as it is also pleasurably bitter at the same time. Smooth for the alcohol content. Absolutely delicious, one of my favorite stouts hands down.

 587 characters

Photo of beebs22
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of HipCzech
4.34/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Serving: 12 oz bottle (08/05/16) poured into a 9 oz Libbey Embassy snifter.

Appearance: Opaque, inky dark brown with a cap of lush, tan foam; spotty lace.

Smell: Rich aroma of roasted, smoky malt, coffee, molasses and tobacco.

Taste: Smooth roasted malt, sweet dark fruit (dates), chocolate and coffee. Closes with a brisk, earth herbal bitterness

Mouthfeel: Full, velvety smooth body with light carbonation.

Overall: Solid, full bodied imperial stout with great roasty aroma.

 481 characters

Photo of BPCam
4.3/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of HardyA
4.59/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of BIGPOPPAS
3.79/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of JonCorbett
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Drank this baby on the heels of EvilTwin’s Soft Dookie… surprisingly they were almost the same. But I did find this one edged out the former by a hair.

Appearance: Pitch black, kinda thick looking, and poured with a bit of aggression to get a finger of medium dark brown sugar coloured foam - very chunky and but disappeared with a leisurely waddle. Little to no lacing left-overs but the carbonation was pretty good looking.

Aromatics: Very rich dark charred oak mixed with dark cacao and over-roasted plums. The coffee bitterness smell is in there as well.

Taste: A more coffee forward flavour, bold powdery rich cacao but hints of biscuit-like and caramel malt keep the burnt flavours from standing up to proudly. It also has the mildly fruit molasses flavour with charred wood and licorice linger that is tempered with a delightful bitter-sweet balance.

Palate: In relation to its flavour, it is actually quite a bit more creamy than it leads you to believe. Mild carbonation and a decent hoppy bitterness that presents it self but excuses itself just as readily when the finish comes through fairly clean and dry - just a touch of sweet left behind.

Overall: A bit more complex that some other Imperials I’ve had recently (as in today), and oh my delicious. I never noticed the 10% and the flavour was much more enjoyable that ET’s (not this was a comparison, but it did help me with where to rank it).

 1,426 characters

Photo of Muss42
4.18/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of JamFuel
4.23/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of SadMachine
4.14/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of TheHopsman
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of DraconusDesanctus666
4.55/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz, bottle into a cigar city snifter.

Jet black with a thin tan head,that dissipates almost immediately.No light coming through the glass.Slow carbonation.

On the nose I get mostly dark fruits,and chocolate.Mixed with some spicy fragrances,and licorice.If you sniff hard enough you even get some teriyaki sauce.

On the palate I get chocolate,and coffee.Some dark fruits,mostly prunes.Im also getting some licorice on the back end.Some spices that are hard to identify,and small amounts of alcohol as well.This is a pretty complex beer.

The body is pretty thick,almost a syrup texture.I also get a fizzling sensation in the back end.Warming alcohol feeling on the back end as well.

This is a very good imperial stout.It's also a very complex imperial stout.The nose and the palate change as the beer warms.

 826 characters

Photo of LuckFreeZone
4.54/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

I really like this beer. There is a slight aftertaste that I cannot place (initially, as it warms that aftertaste becomes a bit more of an alcohol / bourbon flavor), but that doesn't really linger, and it while it pours with a robust head it is not quite as attractive in the glass as Evil Twin's Even More Jesus. Also, if drunk too cold, it has a bit of a bite and you (or, at least, I) miss out on some of the taste. All of that said, I still like it a lot. The taste is concentrated without being intense . . . small sips will do. The taste seems to change as it warms and it seems to interact well with the taste buds in the back of my mouth (and, presumably , everyone else's mouth). The mouth feel is moderate to heavy, though more toward oily than thick. From memory, Bell's Expedition is a close comparison . . . I will dig one of those out of the fridge to review next.

 885 characters

Photo of car2052
4.6/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured from 12 oz. bottle to snifter. Aged over 1 year.

A: Pitch black. Small 1/2 in. medium brown head.
S: Hazelnut coffee, vanilla, caramel, bourbon, teriyaki beef, licorice.
T: Sweet up front, toasty malts and espresso in the heart of the palate. Dark chocolate and a slight alcohol bite also in the mix. Ends with a smoky finish.
M: Heavy. Finishes lighter.
O: Very complex beer. Great flavors come in on the nose and in the palate. Would love to have a vertical tasting.

 476 characters

Photo of Jpb123
4.38/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of ntanner83
4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of GreatHammerhead
4.48/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 2016 12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Look: Black as night with a one finger dark tan head that collapses fairly quickly.

Smell: Dark fruit followed by a spice I don't recognize.

Taste: Smoked malts up front, rich chocolate and coffee middle, then more smoked malts and all tied together with a warming undertow of alcohol.

Feel: Nice thick body, light carbonation and warming alcohol on the swallow. Just about perfect for this flavor profile.

Overall: You would be hard pressed to find a more flavorful stout.

 536 characters

Narwhal Imperial Stout from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
4.15 out of 5 based on 5,051 ratings.
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