Narwhal Imperial Stout | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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Narwhal Imperial StoutNarwhal Imperial Stout
BA SCORE
4.16/5
Exceptional
5,175 Ratings
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:
A malt-forward monster, highlighting the depths of malt flavor.

Narwhal Imperial Stout is inspired by the mysterious creature that thrives in the deepest fathoms of the frigid Arctic Ocean. Featuring incredible depth of malt flavor, rich with notes of espresso, baker’s cocoa, roasted grain and a light hint of smoke, Narwhal is a massive malt-forward monster. Aggressive but refined with a velvety smooth body and decadent finish, Narwhal will age in the bottle for years to come.

Added by JohnGalt1 on 10-14-2012

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#1,381
Reviews:
972
Ratings:
5,175
pDev:
9.62%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
342
Gots:
1,491
Trade:
35
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 5,175 |  Reviews: 972
Photo of baklo
4.27/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of 2GOOFY
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of Fatehunter
4.08/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Off the tap, pitch black with minimal head.
Smell is a strong roasted and caramel malt. Rich and nice.
Taste is bold, chocolate and coffee. Balanced though.
Thick texture with low carbonation and heavy body.
Really hits the spot for an imperial stout.

 251 characters

Photo of ROGUE16
4/5  rDev -3.8%

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

A: Dark brown opaque with slight red tinge when held to the light. 1 finger tan or chocolate milk colour head.

S: Banana, fruity, malty, dark, creamy, alcohol, typical Imperial Stout like.

T: Smooth, creamy, floral, banana, balanced with coffee, sweetened espresso, toasted malts

M: Bready, syurypy thick body, heavy foamy carbonation.

O: Really good, really balanced, sweet and malty, floral and fruity. Up to par with others, yet feels that I had this one before. It’s a little similar to the others. Worth a try and well crafted. 8.9 out of 10. By itself or with dark chocolate.

 595 characters

Photo of Jeffo
3.48/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A case of this actually made it to Amsterdam. Picked it up at De Bierkoning.

From a bottle into a snifter
Vintage: 2013

APPEARANCE: A dark brown, opaque pour yields a three finger, medium looking, creamy, tan head with excellent retention. Black body with no carbonation evident. Head fades to a full wisp and sticks to the sides of the glass. A faint wisp and ring remain until the end leaving some nice lacing down the glass. Pretty good looking stout. Needs to be even blacker for top marks.

SMELL: Dark baker's chocolate, light coffee, cream, some caramel notes and roasted aromas on the nose. Tobacco in there, as well as some leather too. Could be bolder, but complex and interesting enough.

TASTE: Baker's chocolate again, caramel and leather up front, then a big, roasted coffee finish with some burnt and charred malts at the swallow. Bolder and lingering finish of roasted coffee bitterness, burnt and charred malts, leather, tobacco, and some light vanilla cream. Quite burnt and roasted, with lots of other complex flavors as well.

PALATE: Medium body and medium levels of carbonation. A little light on the palate and too prickly for the style, but goes down okay and finishes somewhat mouth-coating. A bit of a burn at the swallow and a touch of heat lingers.

OVERALL: Pretty good stuff. Lots of burnt and charred notes with tobacco definitely give it a European tough. If you like this one, you'll probably like the stuff coming out of De Molen in Holland and various Danish breweries that deserve some praise. The feel is slightly lighter on this, which holds it back a bit. Fill that out and it would support the flavors that much more. Still, this is a solid effort worth checking out if you get the chance. If it were reasonably priced, I'd go back for seconds.

 1,790 characters

Photo of socon67
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of Bierman9
4.05/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I picked up a 4-pack of this yesterday at Ayottes ($9.49). Time for a little half-time libation...

Poured into a small DT tulip... It's a dense, opaque, deep brown colored bier. Head is a mocha hue, and is smooth and creamy but thins quickly. Lacing was on the light side. Aroma was mild, with some choco and a touch of coffee present. Loved the mouthfeel, as it was quite smooth and almost full-bodied, bordering on being chewy.

Flavor is lightly sweet, with some dark choco, mocha, roastiness and cocoa present. The latter reminds me a bit of a dry, powdery, teaspoon-full of Nestles cocoa mix. It's a bit bitter, but in a good manner, like semi-sweet dark-choco baking nibs. There's decent hopping in the finish, with floral action lingering in the dry finish. Pretty good, all in all...

Prosit!

4.05/5 rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

1552

 881 characters

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

Poured from bottle into tulip. Purchased in Louisiana on a business trip...
Pours a deep black with about 1-2 inches tan froathy head. Slightly sweet belgian-like chocolate. Roasted malt is dominant though.
Taste is smooth but bitter roasted malts, some chocolate, and ever so slight smokey booze. No doubt this would age well, maybe mellow this out a bit. A bit bitter now, but still really nice stout. Although, compared to some "top" RIS, its not quite up to par. Still tastey, but not an RIS in my opinion. Maybe an American Stout is more suited to this brew.It just doesnt have the body and personality Ilike in a RIS.

 623 characters

Photo of skaboom420
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of CHickman
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

2013 Bottle: Pours pitch black color with a thick creamy 2 finger tan head that was full of bubbles and faded very slowly, leaving very good spotty lacing and a layer on top.

Smells of oats, vanilla, cocoa powder, molasses, burnt grains, coffee, floral hops, licorice and a lot of smoky charred notes, like the malt went on fire and was then added to the mash. Nose has some sweet fruity notes, but it’s all things burnt overall with the burnt coffee or espresso leading the fade with chocolate and caramel accents that is nice to take in.

Flavor comes out with burnt malt leading the way and then turns in a mix of roasted sweetness with the cocoa powder, molasses, vanilla, coffee grinds, caramel, dry leafy floral hops, grapefruit, burnt wood, oats, licorice, smoky charred grains and anything else that seems like it was over a campfire; the chocolate notes come on stronger as it warms, with dark chocolate, vanilla, espresso and a sweetness that resembles the taste of a marshmallow that fell into the campfire coals, which is a really nice surprise. The alcohol is masterfully hidden, and the hops add mild spices and a citrus hop twang that add bitterness and a tiny bit of balance. Any fan of rich, roasted grains will love this brew and it’s complexities, which approaches the line for too bitter and too acrid but does not cross over into the land of negative flavor.

Mouthfeel is thick and chewy, this feels on the slick side even with the viscosity and has about average carbonation for such a bold beer. It’s bitter, it’s smoky, but it’s damn tasty and a really good RIS that went down easier than it should have. I really liked this beer when I bought this 4 pack last December and feel it got better with age. A high recommendation.

 1,764 characters

Photo of st9647v3
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of AnitaBrewski
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of RickyBfromCT
4.66/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of JamesStreet
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of ArkyVaughan
4.04/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of Justdoit1234
4.16/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of kell50
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of DrMindbender
4.75/5  rDev +14.2%

Photo of VABA
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Can_has_beer
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of HaveUSeenMyCellar
4.19/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Chucker17
3.75/5  rDev -9.9%

Photo of jfcaa193
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of Hootie159
4.1/5  rDev -1.4%

Narwhal Imperial Stout from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.16 out of 5 with 5,175 ratings
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