Imperiale | Ninkasi Brewing Company

BA SCORE
84
good
239 Ratings
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ImperialeImperiale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Ninkasi Brewing Company
Oregon, United States
ninkasibrewing.com

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.10%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Formerly Imperiale High Gravity Stout

Rich, full bodied and surprisingly smooth, Imperiale Stout has a big roast hit up front, and rich, dark malt flavors balanced with ample hop bitterness to finish.

Added by flexabull on 11-05-2011

BEER STATS
Ratings:
239
Reviews:
82
Avg:
3.7
pDev:
13.24%
 
 
Wants:
7
Gots:
30
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 239 |  Reviews: 82
Photo of acurtis
3.47/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.52/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, and slight char aromas. Taste is much the same with cocoa, char, and slight dark fruit flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of roast bitterness and an alcohol kick on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is strong and has a roast bitterness that lingers long after each sip.

 585 characters

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.9/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of metter98
3.71/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a quarter finger high tan head that died down leaving a thin layer of bubbles on the surface, a thin collar around the edge, and some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of black licorice are present in the nose along with hints of dark fruits.
T: The taste has flavors of dark malts with a bit of roast and strong notes of dark fruits and black licorice. A light to moderate amount of bitterness is present. The roasted malts are a little stronger in the finish. The roast becomes stronger as the beer warms up.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation, but seems to be lighter in body considering you would expect from the alcohol content.
O: This beer seems to be oddly fruity for a stout, but is interesting and hides its alcohol very well.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of biboergosum
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle. I love how this is called "High Gravity" here, like anyone would look at a north of a 9% ABV brew any other way.

This beer pours a solid, light diffusing black, with the barest of basal cola edges, and three fingers of puffy, frothy, and rocky Dockers tan head, which leaves some decent pockmarked inner city wall lace around the glass as it gently subsides.

It smells of roasted, kind of meaty caramel malt, bittersweet chocolate, a touch of funky yeast, vanilla-tinged brown sugar, very meek and muddled dark fruit notes, and earthy, leafy, and fairly herbal hops. The taste is more of the same - bready, lightly toasted caramel malt, meaty wet ash, dark cocoa beans, still apparent phenolic yeast, somewhat acrid black orchard fruit, some real (read: boozy) vanilla, bitter coffee grounds, and more leafy, weedy, and earthy hops.

The carbonation is fairly low, but supportive enough in its plain fizziness, the body a strong medium-full weight, and generally smooth, the alcohol slowly chipping away, Chinese water torture style. It finishes on the sweet side, the caramel malt, chocolate, and booze lording it over the still relevant hops.

Not a bad version of the style, but that yeast weirdness has got to go, man. Other than that, the hops do well to more or less balance out the typical big stout flavours, and once the alcohol comes along, everything just sort of works itself out, y'know? Yeah, the rest of this is gonna go great with some spicy Hunan chicken - order up!

 1,503 characters

Photo of SocalKicks
3.67/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of zestar
3.5/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of mactrail
3.78/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

The appearance is quite splendid poured into my giant tall Petrus chalice. Very dark brown that is nearly black but has some amber glints around the edge. Beautiful off-white, fine-grained foam contrasts nicely with the dark brew. Interesting nose of Dutch windmill cookies and hop resins, but you risk being overcome by the alcohol fumes.

The taste is a little too much of a good thing. It's really bitter, right off. The sweet malt is really quite appealing, but it gets elbowed aside by the harsher side. Pleasant sudsy mouthfeel and a full but sprightly body. Winey with a touch of charcoal. Dark grains, burnt sugar, and a hammer on your innocent taste buds. The hops are wearing hoods and wielding whips. I am not worthy!

Chocolate and hot knives of sharp alcoholic beeriness. Here is a beer that is crying out to be watered down with something-- and I have just the anemic Pale Ale to do the job. And that lovely white foam being ravished by the dark body. From the 22 oz bottle purchased at KNB in San Diego.

 1,018 characters

Photo of smithj4
3.9/5  rDev +5.4%

Photo of paulish
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of mdfb79
3.13/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Received as an extra from eatabagofbooger; thanks man. Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into my New Belgium globe.

a - Pours a very dark brown color, almost black, with two inches of dark tan head and moderate carbonation evident. An inch of head lasts throughout drinking it and leaves some light lacing on the glass.

s - Smells of roasted malts, pine hops, light chocolate, sweet dark fruits, and bready malts. Lots of roasted malts and pine hops with some sweetness to it. Not bad but not my favorite; not the biggest fan of hoppy stouts.

t - Tastes of roasted malts, pine hops, sweet dark fruity malts, chocolate, toasted malts, and bready malts. Pretty sweet; more fruit than the nose.

m - Light to medium body and moderate carbonation. A bit thin and a tiny bit too carbonated.

o - Overall a pretty average American stout. Nose is pretty good, albeit hoppy, but the taste was a little too sweet and fruity for me. Mouthfeel was a little thin and over carbonated as well. Not something I'd probably seek out again.

 1,019 characters

Photo of BeerForMuscle
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of 22Blue
3.81/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of malfunxion
3.5/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of GClarkage
4/5  rDev +8.1%

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.7/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours an opaque very dark brown with red tints. Thin tan head dissipates to a film and ring around the glass and a hint of lacing. Light aroma of toasted malt and a hint of chocolate. Starts off with a light flavor of toasted malt and slight light fruit. Finish is more intense with toasted malt, some char and a hint of coffee and chocolate. Flavors are somewhat subdued for an Imperial stout. What flavor is present is pleasant and appropriate. Medium bodied. A satisfactory stout that was pleasant to drink, but I'm not sure what the "High Gravity" means in the name, this is a somewhat light to normal stout in all characteristics.

 669 characters

Photo of stevoj
3.48/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Bomber from Albertsons. Pours out black with a creamy dark beige head. Body seems a little watery, aroma a nice mixture of roast grains and chocolate, taste echoes the aroma with accents of wood, nutmeg and vanilla. Abrupt finish, little alcohol warmth.

 253 characters

Photo of flagmantho
3.86/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 22oz bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: utterly, completely black with no light allowed through at all. Head poured two thick fingers of frothy dark-tan foam. Head retention is good and a nice chunky lace is left on the glass as I drink. It's hard to improve on this.

Smell: nice aroma of coffee with a hint of chocolate. There is also a hint of vegetal hops here. The overall effect is somewhat mild, however; greater depth and complexity would be appreciated here.

Taste: rich, smooth malt with plenty of chocolatey character, with a little bit of roastiness and coffee thrown in to boot. Alcohol fruitiness adds a touch of complexity to the satisfying base ... I like it.

Mouthfeel: medium-thick body with a decent level of carbonation. Creaminess is surprisingly low; this mouthfeel seems a bit chunky for the style. I would like to have more silky smoothness.

Overall: this beer has plenty of ups and downs, but overall I think it's a pretty tasty imperial style stout.

 989 characters

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.03/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22 picked up today at Brewforia... Poured into my new CBS snifter... damn this is a big glass. Short lasting 1 finger brownish head... only okay lacing.. the brew is the expected black.

Nose is a bit odd... roasty, but a dark dried fruitiness seems pretty high for the style... dark cherries and some milk chocolate.. not nearly enough "big stout" qualities for my liking.

Flavor begins with mild roasty qualites... again fruity esters come in quickly and hang on to the finish.. light coffee and chocolate.. okay... needs more heft for sure.

Body is sorta thin for such a big stout...

This is an okay brew.. I doubt it will get better with more time in the bottle.

3.5/3/3/3/3

 683 characters

Photo of Zorro
4.01/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Clear dark brown colored ale with a small brown colored head.

Smells sweet and a lot like German chocolate cake. Strong chocolate and caramel. Slight Kahlua scent. Smells quite tame.

Starts out bittersweet with a emphasis on the sweet. Sweet with bitter chocolate flavor. Strong caramel and a hint of coconut, I'm reminded of German Chocolate Cake again. Slight amount of char but this is mainly bittersweet in flavor.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall a good stout.

 463 characters

Photo of Erik-P
4.25/5  rDev +14.9%

Photo of wordemupg
4.06/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Beer Revolution 5/7/15 (from notes)

A top filled glass has a deep cola edge in black liquid, not much room for foam but the thin mocha film still manages to leave a few rings

S chocolate of all sorts, lots of dark fruit with a little char ash included, smells pretty roasty

T not far from the nose with some herbal notes, plenty of char and chocolate, not as much dark fruit but still has some citric hops shining through all this darkness

M lighter side of full, creamy from the bubbles, chalky after it settles, bitter sweet, heaps of hoppy chocolate linger

O poured a little cold but still rich and flavorful, no booze at any point, a little sneaky for the size

I though I was ordering the Imperial IPA so this one was a bit of a surprise and a pleasant one at that, I'm surprised it doesn't have a higher average on BA

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Photo of Donkster46
3.8/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of barleywinefiend
3.03/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Poured a very deep brownish color with a moderately sized deep tan head that fades slowly leaving some bubbles and light lacing

S: Smells of chocolate and roastiness, a little booze sting and pretty simple.

T: Taste is an initial chocolate, roast, which carries on start to finish and seems to be th ceterpiece of another boring Ninkasi beer. The finish is rather mundayne with some bitterness, roast and guess what? Cocoa. A little booziness stings on the end.

M: Moderate to full bodied, well carbonated, nothing impressive, not really decadent or appealing.

O: Average at best. I consumed Abyss prior to this and it really showed just how mediocre this beer is.

 672 characters

Photo of DeadeyeOTDO
4/5  rDev +8.1%

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Imperiale from Ninkasi Brewing Company
3.7 out of 5 based on 239 ratings.
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