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Stone 07.07.07 Vertical Epic Ale | Stone Brewing

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BA SCORE
85
very good
382 Reviews
THE BROS
74
okay
Read the review
Stone 07.07.07 Vertical Epic AleStone 07.07.07 Vertical Epic Ale
BEER INFO

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

Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.40%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
In this year’s edition we took our inspiration from two Belgian styles: Saisons and Golden Triples. As such, the Stone 07.07.07 Vertical Epic has a deep, deep golden hue and the flavor is spicy, fruity, complex and refreshing. We used four different malts, and a subtle, yet distinct, blend of Glacier and Crystal hops to get just the right balance. Then, for the complexity, we added in some exotic spices --- including ginger, cardamom, grapefruit peel, lemon peel and orange peel (the latter three acknowledging our Southern California home) --- and a special Belgian yeast strain. All in all this is yet another case of us drawing from classic Belgian influences and cavalierly making it our own...San Diego style!

Added by taez555 on 06-19-2007

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Reviews:
382
Ratings:
576
Avg:
3.78
pDev:
17.2%
 
 
Wants:
48
Gots:
148
For Trade:
13
User Reviews
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Reviews: 382 | Ratings: 576
Photo of Florida9
3.57/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Next in the series. Bottle says to age this one to at least 12/12/12. Well, I think I've got that covered.

A: A fairly odd shade of yellowish brown. Neither light nor dark. Neither yellow nor brown. I must say, it's not an overly appealing shade. Forms a small fizzy head that fizzes away quickly, leaving just a thin ring around the edge. No lacing.

S: Aroma is nearly non-existent. Swirling the glass, I am barely able to pick up anything beyond a fruity sweetness and some yeasty phenols.

T: Taste is much more pronounced. It is moderately sweet, with notes of ginger ale, candy sugar, herbs, fennel, citrus zest and some light spices. Bright floral notes. A bit alcoholic on the back end.

M: On the lighter side of medium in body. Low-medium carbonation levels. Spicy-prickly on the finish. Mild bitterness.

O: An okay beer. Not really sure it benefited from six years of aging.

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Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.35/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber, meant to be aged until 12.12.12, I didn't want to wait, so I served it in a pint glass.

A - clear, copper color, with a white head that really thinned out to a tiny ring.

S - all that citrus?... yep, you can smell the citrus, hops and some yeastiness, in this very young brewing,

T - I'm glad I drank it now, very tasty, well balanced flavors, sweet malt/fruitiness/little bittering from hops.

M - medium bodied, smooth carbonation, pleasant after taste.

D - it's very good tasting and goes down smooth, a nice drinkable treat for most beer lovers.

Final Note: I'm a little curious as to how this brew will age, but already knowing how good it is now would make it difficult for me to cellar it for any length of time, much less 5 years!
My local beer store just got a few cases of this beer in stock. I will definitely pick up 3 or 4 more of these and try to hang on to at least 1 until the 08.08.08 Vertical Epic is released.

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Photo of Beaver13
2.93/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

22 oz bottle. Pours a hazy golden-orange with a small white head that quickly disappears.

The aroma is wheaty malts with some spices and a little fruit and alcohol and some grassy hops.

The flavor is sweet malts, spices (clove, ginger) with some fruitiness. It has a grassy bitter finish. As it warms, the sweetness and ginger become a little cloying. The mouthfeel is medium and watery with low but sharp carbonation.

Overall, a decent Belgian, but not too striking to me. The blend of overwhelming flavors don't balance out really well.

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Photo of ffejherb
3.97/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On cask at Stone World Bistro & Gardens on 7/10/09.

A - Hazy amber/orange body with thin off-white head that receded to a patchy film, then finally nothing, leaving behind only thin strands of lacing on the glass.

S - Caramel malts and aged citrusy and hemp-like hops combine to create a very mellow, subtle nose. Hints of toffee, sugar and orange also emerge, followed by a waft of alcohol.

T - Sweet malty flavor with caramel and toffee at the forefront. Hop character is muted, suggesting hints of citrus fruit. The brew possesses a subtle boozy alcohol warmth, though it is not harsh at all. Flavor is very mellow overall.

M - Very smooth, mellow mouthfeel with a syrupy texture. Finishes with a mild alcohol warmth and scant hop bitterness on the palate.

D - This Vertical Epic transformed into a very subtle, mellow brew due to a bit of aging and cask conditioning. Quite tasty overall.

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Photo of Vancer
3.33/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice beer sent my way by HimerMan from the NoBSultra BIF – many thanks!

An easy pour produces a mattress of ivory head on top of a clear amber brew. Good lacing rounds it out.

Yep, plenty of of Belgium yeast and sugar cane in the aroma. Spicy too.
Quaff has these classics, but with a bit of a soapy aftertaste that distracts for the overall goodness of the brew. Spicy fruit – apple and fig, help provide flavor.

A tad disappointed in this one – but that’s because of my high expectations for Stone.

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Photo of msubulldog25
4.02/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

As the one-year mark approaches on the 07.07.07, I thought I'd open a bottle to see how this one is doing. This has been kept in a dark cellar closet since last summer. A puff of soft carbonation hisses from under the cap and into the La Chouffe tulip glass it goes.

A: Hazy orange-honey color, shows plenty of rising carbonation. With a brisk pour, cracking eggshell white head builds to just over a finger. A noisy crown of multi-sized bubbles knit loosely together, but fades away after just a couple minutes. No lace and, once the head disappears, looks a little lifeless after a while.

S: Big aroma of apples, green raisins and dried (berry) fruit wraps. Musty blend of yeast and 'Belgian' spiciness. Malty and sweet, balanced with citrusy hops.

T: More green apples, cinnamon/nutmeg spice with a burst of tangy-sweet tangerine citrus. Ripe berries, earthy yeast. Mushy pear and some booze, a little like brandy.

M: Satiny smooth thickness, sizable mouthfeel with a soft carbonation and some lasting coating. Though generally sweet and fruity, the finish does dry out (medicinal/chalky). Alcohol heat is now a pleasant 'warmth'; earlier tastes of this last summer were unpleasantly 'hot' for me. The mellowing over these months has improved the mouthfeel.

D: After my last (disappointing) try of this (August '07), I vowed to revisit at some point. Given time, this has improved in most aspects; many of my scores adjusted a .5 point upwards. I like the creativity of a Belgian Tripel/Saison hybrid and would say this leans toward the Tripel, both in terms of appearance/flavor and the elevated ABV. A good one to sip on, interesting enough to ruminate over. Glad I saved a few of these for later. Recommended.

Thanks, Metalmonk, for posting the review that 'reminded' me to give this another try...

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Photo of srandycarter
3.1/5  rDev -18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Pretty copper, somewhat murky, tonds of thick near white head. Lots of cling lace.

S - Spicy. Belgian yeast and spice are about all I get.

T - Like when you use too much salt, there is no way home. Too much spice in this beer. Overpowering.

M - See taste, balance can't be achieved for me on this one.

D - See Taste and Mouthfeel, and obviously, not sessionable for me.

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Photo of JayQue
4.17/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cloudy orange color . Nice white head that fades fast. No lacing.
Nice Belgian smell. Yeasts, astringency, spiciness.

Taste is good. A great, heavy duty astringent Belgian beer. Spicy, alcohol masked well. Very tasty. There is a pear like and perfumy aftertaste that could probably get annoying after a while, but fine for the first bottle!!!!

Mouthfeel is rich and luxurious. Drinkability is good for the abv, maybe downgrade it a bit for perfuminess.

All in all a really good representation of this style!!

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Photo of yemenmocha
4.25/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a brilliant orange amber color, very pleasing to the eye. Head is generous at first but dissipates to a thin rim of white lace.

Nose is candy like, fruit candies, like apricot and orange maybe, and some peppermint sugary aromas too.

Palate is somewhat viscous with syruppy sweetness, in a good way, with a big spiced warmth at the end. Somewhat prickly on the palate too as alcohol is evident.

Finish is long with lingering fruit and malt sweetness.

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Photo of dsa7783
4.5/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

1 Pint, 6 fl oz bottle copped from Super Saver in Somerville for $7.99...
Bright orange, tangerine hue with noticeable foamy head that soon receded, leaving lots of lacing around the top of the glass...
Great smell of fresh fruit, nectarines, pears, apple, honey, clovers, and grapefruit...
A very sweet-aroma bursting with freshness and character...
Equally great taste that strongly complements the aroma, with sweet, sugar-laden flavors dancing around the tongue...
Great thick, rich, creamy mouthfeel...
Perilously drinkable with the hefty 8.4% ABV struggling to be noticed behind ultra-rich and sweet, unique flavors and well-balanced with fruity caramel malts and citrus hops...
This is very different from the usual Stone brews that I've encountered...
With Stone, I'm used to sampling very aggressive and in-your-face beers, while this one, although full of plenty of flavor, was more subtle and easy-going...
Very good depiction of the style... Highly recommended...

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Photo of harrymel
3.71/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured during a 06-10 VE tasting.
Poured to NB globe.

A: golden, autumnal with little bubbles. Excellent clarity. Can agitate a transient head. No lacing.

S: Wow, complex beer here. Dominated by ginger, there can also be lemon peel, oak, mint, cardamom, other spice flavors. Very, very complex. Sweet. Further, the characteristics change and interweave as temp changes and beer breathes. So complex.

T: Ginger, and again, complex. The spices in here almost taste like a mulled compilation. The yeast finally makes an appearence here with bananas, belgo yeastiness. Would like to try again, warmed.

M: medium body with lower carbonation. Leaves mouth dry.

D: This beer is a sipper for sure. I wouldnt be able to drink more than an 8 oz pour of this one. Definitely the most complex of the group.

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Photo of flexabull
4.2/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear bright gold color with a large white head.

Aromas are intense and spicy. Bubblegum, grapefruit, and bananas all noticed on the nose.

Tastes spicy, but not overdone. Tastes of citrus fruits, bananas, pepper, and bubblegum. There is a general overall creaminess character to the flavor, slightly sweet, and very malty.

Mouthfeel is full and really supple. Creamy, smooth, and thick.

Interesting beer. Not quite my favorite of the epics, but it's a well made, and is enjoyable to taste and drink.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
3.94/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Gold with an insta-vanish white head. Springtime-y light malt, lightly spicy aroma. Tastes delicate and fruity - peach and golden pear fruit with golden malt. Spicy like a Fuji apple.

From the reviews I've read this is better now than it was when it was released.

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Photo of Metalmonk
4.28/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Even if you wanted to, you couldn't pour this without getting at least an inch-thick of fluffy whiteness. The head is very Belgian in that its made of a zillion impossibly small bubbles and stays put for the duration, coating the sides of the glass with each tilt and return. Color is rusty autumn orange.

Smell is exotic spices, ones I can't name, plus heavy ginger and anise, also a little bit of nutmeg. There's a good yeast presence, and the malts seem to have produced a predominantly sweet backbone.

Aromas detected come out assertively on the tongue, with a hint of cinnamon in there as well. Grapefruit adds a little twang/tang in the background. Basically you're getting a complex melange of exotic spice and fresh citrus fruit basket. A hint of yeast comes through, especially with warming, and the alcohol makes for even more boisterous behavior on the tongue. While it's incredibly complex, it somehow leans a little to one side, without having a strong malty base to add balance. Malts are like raw sugar-cookie dough, but could've been pushed up a little further. It certainly is delicious enough without having any major problems. I even dig the alcohol heat, seems to work for the flavors that are present. A blindfold taste-test would probably have most Belgian aficionados swearing this was from the Beer Paradise itself. Kudos.

The mouthfeel is outstanding, with a clean, buttery lightness, a great creamy roundness, and just a touch of carbonation which amplifies the spicier elements.

I love Saisons and I love Tripels...this is a hybrid of the two. And it's Stone. How could it fail? It's not your typical Stone ale, but what is a typical Stone ale but something atypical in the first place? This is worthy of the brewer's reputation, and a worthy addition to the "Vertical Epic" series. The only reason I wouldn't rate drinkability even higher is because all that citrus/spice just sticks with you and sticks with you, almost to the point of overload. Kudos again, Stoners...

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Photo of Floydster
3.83/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle from Cooke's in El Segundo

Poured into a large mug and let sit for a while

Half inch head that faded away pretty fast

Golden color like a saison

Smell was taken over by oranges, but taste had hints of banana

Not a bad beer and I cannot wait to see what happens to my other bottles while they age

My friend had a 2003 VE the other day and said it was amazing after aging for 4 years, way better than its intial tastwe

Try now and save one for later

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Photo of WeisGuy
3.82/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

a - pours a burnt orange color with a one-finger head, no retention or lacing

s - lots of maltiness and clove, a pronounced alcohol presence in the aroma as well

t - big maltiness up front with some orange and lemon citrus, lots of clove and other more subtle spices, finish is more spice and a decent amount of alcohol, still a bit hot

m - light-to-medium bodied, good deal of carbonation, moderately dry finish

d - the hotness of the alcohol limits drinkability somewhat, but I'm sure it will become less pronounced with a little age, nice Belgian that has an interesting taste

Decent Belgian style ale from Stone, but definitely not what they do best. I'd like to taste this one in a year or two to see how the alcohol has toned down.

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Photo of Overlord
2.31/5  rDev -38.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Well, I'll give this a pass, for now, as apparently it is a beer that's meant to be aged.

Not impressed at the moment. Flavors were sharp, but didn't blend well, and it was exceedingly raw. Almost seemed like it had been mixed from other beers....hard to describe.

I'll give it a year or two and try another bottle.

**I had another one recently. Somewhat impatient, I know, but given just how much I've enjoyed other Stone offerings, I had to try this again. It has not improved. I'm actually lowering my score a notch. The flavors do not sit well together, and I don't know what crazy spice after-taste they were going for, but I simply "Do not want."

***the next time I have this beer, it will be when it's aged five years. If anything, it is less drinkable now than it was when I initially had it, probably as my tastebuds and palate have grown a bit more discerning in the intervening year. Spicy, hot with alcohol, just an unpleasant mess. So atypical of Stone.

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Photo of Kendo
4.12/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured from the bomber into a Chimay chalice. First pour is clear; some sediment floaties from second half of the bottle. Body is glowing dark golden/amber-coppery with a small cream-colored head that settles fast. No lacing at all.

S: Wow -- strong nose of candied sugar, spices and some yeasty-ness. At times this reminds me of a white wine (I was thinking chardonnay), at other times I'm thinking peach licquor (if there is such a thing), as I get some sort of apricot or peach-like fruit. Waft of alcohol noted as it warms a bit.

T: First impression: candied orange slices and light ginger. Heat is felt down the gulley and then in the belly. Overall impression is of sweetness: candied sugar and lingering ginger spice. Hint of citrus (orange and lemon), but otherwise no real hop presence. Wondering if maybe there was more when this beer was fresh. . . .

M: Smooth in feel -- slightly syrupy, actually, though that is offset by a nice, fine carbonation. I'd call it medium in weight.

D: Good. A sipper due to the sweetness and slightly thick feel, but the heat is moderate and it's tasty enough to want to take that next sip.

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Photo of mcallister
3.7/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy, pale, semi opaque fiery amber color. Poured with a nice off white head with a fluff to it that fades quickly into some slight, highly carbonated lacing.

Noce is full of fresh tropical fruit and clove with an afterthough of bubblegum. Pineapple and mango and moderate banane lead into a citrusy orange pear. RS seems like it may show it's face. Some floral hopping as well. Bright and lively acidity.

Again very fruity. With a large undermining of clove. Carbonation seems to be a little flat for this beer especially compared to the bottled sample I tried. Pear, peach, and orange, with less tropical activity than the nose. Still hints of banana and pineapple. A dry finish that is a little misleading considering the amount of fruit. Even a hint of corriander? A more acidic backbone with slightly more carbonation would have greatly benefited this brew. Still a sticky creamy mid palate and a beer I could drink one or two of.

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Photo of grub
3.5/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Viggo was nice enough to share this one. thanks eric!

22oz bottle.

pours deep golden yellow, not quite orange, with a small dense off-white head. the head drops fairly fast and leaves no lace.

aroma is nice. orange peel. clove. bit of cinnamon. corriander. cracker malts. bit of grain. alcohol. light phenols. the alcohol is almost harsh and burning the nose, but not quite.

taste is nice. warming alcohol followed by sweet tangerine and oranges. low bitterness level. spice isn't as strong as the aroma, but still quite present. bit of clove and cinnamon. corriander. cracker malts. light grainy character. phenols and regular alcohol. warmer than i expected, but this one is made to age for another 5 years until the 12.12.12 so that's ok. neat blend of saison and tripel, with the spice from a saison but the flavour closer to a tripel. no saison funk, and not quite the bitterness of a tripel.

mouthfeel is good. medium carbonation feels a touch low, but works ok. medium-light body fits well.

drinkability is ok. the alcohol is pretty warm right now, but i can see this one mellowing nicely. a bit too sweet right now too, which might mellow and mesh nicely with time. i expect the rating on this one to rise with age.

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Photo of charlzm
3/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Consumed on January 20th, 2013 at a private Vertical Epic tasting.

Beer pours a cloudy, medium golden-yellow. No head or carbonation evident in glass.

Aroma is sweet grapefruit.

Flavor is a bit sweet and cidery with bitter citrus peel and a slightly powdery, sightly floral yeast note.

Mouthfeel is a little thick and could use some carbonation.

Overall, this was one of the more drinkable VE beers we shared.

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Photo of GilGarp
4.09/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Several bottles were sitting in the basement already when I came across one at my local beer-selling establishment and decided to see how it was aging.

Served cool into a goblet. It has a ton of chunky sediment at the bottom of the bottle which I try not to disturb. It pours a hazy golden orange color with thin white head that settles quickly.

Aroma is really enjoyable with lemon citrus, wonderful spiciness, and some yeast funk. The spices are floral in nature, maybe some corriander.

Flavor is also very citrusy, almost tart, with lemon zest, orange pith, and grapefruit. The spices liven it up making it like a holiday spiced beer. Hops are basically nonexistant but it's possible they are totally overwhelmed by the tart/sour citrus fruit. It's pleasant overall but stragely challenging at times.

Mouthfeel is medium in body and moderate carbonation. Drinkability is alright but I wonder how much better (or worse) this will be in 3 or 4 years.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
4.45/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Golden honey colord body, excellent clarity, mild carbonation streams, topped by four fingers of tight white foam.

Notes of zesty pepper hit the nose from a foot-and-a-half away as it pours. Up closer, a strong assertive lemon rises above the spice.

Surprisingly lightly, it rolls across the tongue. While described as a mix of saison and trippel, it also seems a bit witish. A light sweet taste, generously fruity, with a sprinkling of spice. Tangy and refreshing.

Mouthfeel is light, it dances across the tongue, but also with some body to it. Spices well integrated and not dusty.

Drinkability is another surprise. While I sometimes have struggled with trippels, this goes down so smooth. Winds may be howling this night, but I could see this as a summer nightcap out on the deck.

This was more of "take a shot" purchase than most, but it paid off well. Another winner from Stone.

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Photo of atsprings
4.84/5  rDev +28%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber poured into a Goose Island IPA tulip. The beer pours a crisp pale orange with a decent head that slowly diminishes to a ring. The aroma is sweet orange, citrus and spice. The beer is a wonderful blend of sweet malts, orange, citrus, spice, and just a hint of yeast. This is one of the best American Belgian styles I've ever had! The beer is light to medium bodied and the alcohol is somewhat well hidden. This is a very enjoyable beer, but definitely a sipper.

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Photo of lackenhauser
3.88/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice orange color with a slight foamy head. Very clear though a fair amount of floaties in there. Nice aroma though a fair amount of pumkin pie type spices which I wasnt expecting. Malty flavor with a decent level of spiciness. Good orange/pepper spice going on. Trace of alcohol bite. Decent body-I was expecting more abv for the overall impression. Very nice and enjoyable overall.

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Stone 07.07.07 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing
3.78 out of 5 based on 576 ratings.
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