Totalitarian | Stone Brewing

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TotalitarianTotalitarian
BA SCORE
4.1/5
Exceptional
313 Ratings
TotalitarianTotalitarian
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States
stonebrewing.com

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Built from the backbone of Stone's classic Imperial Russian Stout, Stone Totalitarian Imperial Russian Stout certainly celebrates the hallmarks of the style - it pours jet-black with a fluffy chocolate head and tastes of deeply dark fruit flavors with rich chocolate and coffee overtones. Yet, however old world in nature, this particular rendition of an IRS is flavored with new world hops, intensifying its berry flavors and aroma while subtly introducing a juicy melon undertone. The result is a spectacularly sinful delight. Don't say we didn't warn you, comrade.

Added by rkarimi on 03-10-2018

BEER STATS
Ranking:
-
Reviews:
105
Ratings:
313
pDev:
7.56%
 
 
Wants:
8
Gots:
66
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 313 |  Reviews: 105
Reviews by ChrisMon02:
Photo of ChrisMon02
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle dated 2/28/18. Poured into a snifter.

Black as night, mocha head that lasts and leaves nice sticky lacing. Big roasted malt, bitter hops, coffee and anise on the nose. Taste follows the nose with an added berry flavor in the finish. This taste like a blend of Self Riteous and their regular IRS and I love that. Mouthfeel is medium and fits the style well. One of the best new beers of the year for me. I will be tracking a few six packs down so I can sip on this over the winter.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of BEERchitect
4.17/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

No bells. No whistles. No barrel aging. No vanilla or lactose. No chocolate or coffee. With relatively no complication whatsoever, Stone's imperial stout is just an imperial stout that's brought into the modern craft beer era. I'm not sure if this is even allowed.

Nevertheless, here it is. Totalitarian pours with the expected espresso black austere of their classic Imperial Russian Stout and crowned with a similarly thick mocha meringue. Sweet char lifts to the nose along with a robust perfume of cocoa, coffee, smoke, dark fruit, earthen spice and a twinge of alcohol spice. Malty and sweet on the front of the tongue, burnt sugars abound. Off of molasses and more of toffee, caramel and nougat, all seem toasty, roasty and even charred about the edges.

Beating the middle palate into total submission, the premiere roast of those espresso, bittersweet chocolate and black walnut flavors are paramount. Sweetness is in full support of the roast and resists a tendency to fade toward dryness. Blackcurrant, blueberry and red grape esters seem heavily charred while a campfire late palate of licorice and brandy add a spice to accompany any hop complement that in itself seems coffee and cocoa-like.

Full bodied with a sensation of marshmallow and char, the creamy textures that rise early eventually develop into a malty dry texture at the aid of spicy alcohol and hop resins. Shy of ash or any roast derived astringency, the finish comes with a soilish roast of Turkish coffee and a long linger of burnt, smoky dark chocolate.

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Photo of oberon
4.19/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours into a goblet jet black except for a thinner but well retained deep beige head atop.Dark roast coffee,licorice,and charred dark fruit in the nose.Big time coffee dark roasted malts on the palate,a bit of caramel underneath the roast and char,very smooth feel.For the style the sweetness is at a low level,love the big roasted/charred element of the beer.Really like this and it goes down real easy for what it is.

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Photo of SomethingClever
4.3/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle poured into a nonic pint.

A: Jet black body with no light getting through with a creamy khaki mocha head that is creamy in appearance that disappears too quickly.

S: Bakers chocolate, licorice, light char, a little coffee, and some roasted malts. A little alcohol is noticeable in the nose.

T: Lots of dark chocolate, lots of deep roasted malts edging towards burned a little coffee and some licorice finishing sweet.

M: thick body nice lush feel on the tongue, it finishes fairly dry.

O: If this is the same beer as a their Russian Imperial Stout this must be more dialed in, 2016 was a boozy mess. This beer clicks much better, although the alcohol is still there. It's smoother than the 2016.

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Photo of dertyd
3.83/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

The beer pours out a dark dark brown, black in the glass, with 1 finger of malt ball center colored head-------------- the aromas are of dark chocolate, coffee and dark fruit-------------- the flavors are of dark chocolate, coffee, hop bitterness and roasted malts, the beer has a medium to full mouthfeel, with a overly bitter finish--------------- overall this is a nice Russian imperial stout, it's just not my favorite take on the style I like the more sweet and richer style vs the overly bitter-----

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Photo of russpowell
4.16/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours an effervescent ebony with 2 fingers of cocoa colored head. Average head retention & lacing, nice viscosity

S: Cocoa, iron, a little smoke late

T: Follows the nose, smokeyness & dryness & Baker's Chocolate up front. Richer chocolate, dryness, woodyness, a little vanilla & some iron as this warms. Finishes dry with a bitter/slightly sweet chocolate edge & some subtle, well done smokeyness

MF: Fairly chewy, slight carbonation

A very good take on the style, ABV is well concealed. Very much worthy of purchase

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.2/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours a very dark mahogany brown, appearing opaque black in the glass with a thin brown head that dissipates to patches with slight lacing. Aroma of dark toasted malt with light char, cocoa and a little coffee. Flavor follows, with dark toasted malt with moderate char, cocoa and dark chocolate, fresh coffee and a little hint of caramel. Finishes with great dark charred malt and lingering dark chocolate and coffee. Medium bodied with light creaminess and good carbonation. A fine Russian imperial stout that hits all the marks for the style profile. Perhaps a little more char than a classic RIS, but all for the better. The malt char fits in well with the other flavors. Both the chocolate and coffee flavors tastes authentic and high quality. This is one of best non-barreled stouts Stone has done. I'll certainly be drinking it again.

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Photo of Zorro
4.46/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Lightproof black colored beer with an exceptionally tall head brown colored head. Fair warning, pour a little short or it will foam over the top.

Smells sweet and full of char from a good 3 feet away. Smells sweet and of coffee and chocolate. Lots of patent malt in this one. Toasted grain scent. Scent of Russian black bread. Faint scent of smoke and medicine cabinet.

Starts out sweet thick and fairly salty. After taste tingles the tongue with licorice. Lots of chocolate and coffee. Alcohol is detectable in this one. Some might find the vodka note not to their liking. This does have the taste of Kahlua to it. There is a taste of rum here that is quite pleasant.

Mouthfeel is thick, milkshake thick.

Overall a nice RIS. This isn't the same as the old Stone RIS. This is both sweeter and a little more bitter than the older Stone RIS.

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Photo of HenryPorter7777
4.19/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark black with a 1/2” foam that settles upon warming; light lacing to finish. The things that stand out are the chocolate/coffee balance with the slight edge to chocolate, and; the great mouthfeel due to the flaked oats and Belma hops. Just a very slight edge to some sweetness.Other things going on are dark fruits and a very slight hop edge, but all in alignment; nothing offensive. This beer is “all there” at 10.6% ABV, with a 70 IBU rating that is only noticed within the beer’s balance. Once again, STONE.
Note: Second tasting September, 2018:
My “new” emphasis here would be on IMPERIAL, and less on slight chocolate/coffee/sweetness. No changes in regard to the fact that this is very well done.
Additional note: Shared with JA ——and he loved it.

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Photo of Gajo74
4.29/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a viscous looking ink black color, with a hint of vinous ruby red. A modest creamy head shows decent retention and yields lacing.
Aromas highlight a rich malt base. Nutty, hazelnut like, biscuity, chocolate, nougat and some light roast. There is a light amount of dark fruit, along with a light alcohol spice that is, to its credit, not boozy.
Sweet on the tongue but not cloying. Flavors of chocolate, dark caramel, brown sugar and molasses. A nice espresso roast and charred malt begins to develop in the mid palate. It adds bitterness and balance. The alcohol, although clearly evident, is actually masked well enough. Not at all boozy, instead it provides more of a kick and slight warming.
More on the high side of medium bodied than full. Despite the high ABV, this is amazingly drinkable. The carbonation is moderate to gentle. Sweet and sticky at first, it then turns roasty and bitter, making the finish dry. Smooth and creamy, yet, with an alcohol spice that tingles the gums.
I feel like I have had some Russian Imperial Stouts that kind of missed the mark lately, however, this one has restored my faith in the style. A delicious brew! Thanks Stone!

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Photo of BlurryVisi0n
4.09/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Served in a snifter glass from a 22oz bomber.

Appearance: Thick brown tinted black body with a somewhat thick head rising roughly one finger's length off the body coming off a tan color. Settles after one sip with sticky lacing on the glass.

Smell: Espresso and a chocolate syrup like scent. It's light and potent at the same time if that can ever happen.

Taste: Heavy malts, little maltier than what I remember the original IRS considering I had a vintage bottle two days ago. Has a slight caral tone and hints of bitterness which linger for a while.

Mouth: Thin body with a full car carbonation which dissolves a bit after a few sips.

Overall: Good beer and great gift from the wife. I definitely liked it but lately been spoiled with a few other beers in this category that hold a closer place in my heart. Always in a glass. Salud!

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Photo of BucannonXC5
4.14/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Type: 22-oz. bottle
Glass: Ball 16-oz. mason jar
From: 5 Star Liquor in La Mesa, Calif.
Price: $8.99
Purchased: March 24, 2018
Consumed: March 24, 2018
Reviewed as: Russian Imperial Stout
Misc.: Bottled on Feb. 21, 2018

Had been wanting to try this and figured not was just as good a time as any to try it. Had given the original Stone Imperial Russian Stout at 4.18 back on Oct. 27, 2011. Online description read, “Built from the backbone of Stone's classic Imperial Russian Stout, Stone Totalitarian Imperial Russian Stout certainly celebrates the hallmarks of the style - it pours jet-black with a fluffy chocolate head and tastes of deeply dark fruit flavors with rich chocolate and coffee overtones. Yet, however old world in nature, this particular rendition of an IRS is flavored with new world hops, intensifying its berry flavors and aroma while subtly introducing a juicy melon undertone. The result is a spectacularly sinful delight. Don't say we didn't warn you, comrade.” OK.

Poured a pitch black color with three fingers of khaki tan rocky head. Could see just a few bubbles coming up from the sides of the glass. Average watery lacing. World-class foamy retention. (Sight - 4.00)

Smelled bitter dark chocolate, dark fruits, purple grape, blackberry, cocoa, espresso, semi-char wood, vanilla (wishful?) and molasses. (Smell - 4.25)

Tasted about as good as the nose. Got dark fruits, purple grape, blackberry, anise, licorice, bitter dark chocolate, espresso, semi-char wood, cacao, dark chocolate syrup, molasses and burnt sugar. Nowhere near 10.6 pct. ABV. (Taste - 4.00)

Full body. Creamy-to-sticky texture. Average carbonation. Long, warming finish. (Feel - 4.25)

This was excellent, although I feel like I overrated it just a smidgeon. Would like to compare this to the original Stone IRS. (Overall - 4.25)

4.14 | 92 | A-

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Photo of ExtraStout
4.37/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours maroon deep black with a dense creamy tan foam head. Smells like candied dark fruit, smoky roasted malts, dark espresso coffee roast, dark baking chocolate, plums, grapes, with earthy herbal grassy pine. Tastes like candied dark fruits, dark espresso coffee roast, smoky roasted malts, dark baking chocolate, plums, grapes, with herbal earthy grassy pine. Feels medium bodied, creamy and slick with moderate carbonation. Overall a really nice Russian imperial stout.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
4.07/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Black in color with a halo of a tan head.
Coffee/chocolate/roasted malt aroma. Faint.
The taste improved slightly on the aroma. Dark chocolate, black coffee. Nice char in the background.
A big beer. Alcohol not at all noticeable.

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Photo of BeerDreadz
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Beaver13
3.18/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle, bottled 2/21/18. Pours dark brown with a medium creamy brown head that goes to a thin film that laces the glass some.

The aroma is roasted bakers chocolate and some coffee notes.

The flavor is sweet bakers chocolate with a lot of heavy roast and some black licorice and a bit of harsh roast alcohol in the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with low carbonation

Overall, it's a bit harsh and unbalanced.

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Photo of ledouge
3.91/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Tstromer
4.43/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

L- dark murky pour with a rocky caramel colored head
S- vanilla at first with a surprisingly slight hoppy after scent
T- A chocolate smokey flavour that is very bold and smooth
F- creamy and again very smooth
overall a great beer, one of the better imperial stouts ive had!

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Photo of Franziskaner
3.98/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Black in color with no light penetration. There's a quarter inch of creamy brown resting on top. Light lacing. I'm smelling dark bitter roasted barley. I'm tasting a hefty wallop of deeply bitter dark roasted barley, chocolate, and tobacco. The mouth is thick, sticky and lightly chewy.

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Photo of MattyG85
4.55/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of GOBLIN
4.04/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of jeschaefer
3.48/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Photo of InfernoBoss
4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of bottmfeedr
4.23/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

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Totalitarian from Stone Brewing
Beer rating: 4.1 out of 5 with 313 ratings