Stone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout | Stone Brewing

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Stone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal StoutStone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.20%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by ThreeWiseMen on 07-02-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 705 | Ratings: 968
Photo of Packforever1976
3.83/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served at cellar temp in my oversized snifter.

A: Pours jet black, leaving a thick and creamy dark tan head. Head recedes fairly quickly, leaving a small layer on top. Decent lacing.

S: A nice blend of sweet/bitter dark chocolate in the nose. Some sweet malts and oats. A slight hint of bourbon as well. There is some alcohol smell in there as well.

T: Big punch of bitter dark chocolate in the front. Some dark roast coffee in the back. There is a faint citrus taste in the back as well.

M: Proper carbonation level. This is a little on the thin side, I wish it was more viscous/chewy. Even with the heat from the alcohol, it is still fairly smooth.

D: The heat makes it tough to give this one high drinkability marks. It's good, but not great. I'm glad I have a couple more in the cellar. I'm hoping that this one improves with age. I'll have to give another one a shot in a year or so.

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Photo of WindUpBird
4.15/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark dark brown with a dark tan head. Smells of chocolate and roasted malt.

This bottle is about 8 months old, and has aged nicely--the bitterness has lost its edge and the resulting smoothness reveals a complex and well-balanced stout.

This stout feels full and creamy--for me this may be the strongest feature of this brew.

The 9.2% ABV and the fullness of this stout make it a one-bottle per session brew for me.

Overall, this is a very nice stout, and I'll come back to it again.

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Photo of tlinner
4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very powerful beer, as is expected from Stone. Instead of hops, the theory is that the bitterness will come from the bitter chocolate used in the brewing process. And while this isn't nearly as bitter as most of Stone's offerings, it is nevertheless very tasty. The color is a deep black; no light shines through. Taste is very malty and chocolatey. No room for nuance here, which is what I love so much about Stone. A deviation from the norm for this brewery, but no less worthy of praise than, say, Arrogant Bastard or Ruination.

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Photo of brushtachio
3.49/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I've had this on two separate occasions. Once I drank it a little colder than I would normally drink a stout. The second time I had it closer to 50-55 deg. and surprisingly I found that I liked it better very cold.

Pours nice and black and produces a nice chocolate head with a little coaxing

Cold, it's smell was subdued but enjoyable with chocolate, roasted malt and a little smoke. Warmer, all these smells were pushed out by a really dominant booziness.

With the taste, again, unless extremely cold, the rubbing alcohol burn is overpowering and detracts from the chocolate and malt. When the booze taste subsides, you still get the lingering hops and chocolate bitterness

Mouthfeel is silky but thinner than expected.

The heavy booze presence keeps the drinkability low unless you like ice cold stouts

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Photo of shanem
4.78/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - Crazy dark and thick with little head

S - Chocolate but not overpowering with something sweet in there

T - Definitely chocolate and oat with a slight sweetness to finish, and does not taste like the alc % it brings

M - Thick and creamy in an amazing way

D - Perfect, probably shouldn't have too many, but I could enjoy a few in a row

Probably one of my favorite beers of all time. Perfect balance in a big dark beer, with an amazing chocolate flavor that doesn't kill everything else

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of nectar14
3.91/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 22 oz purchased at brewery:

A- Dark and viscous coming out of the bottle, collecting a tan bubbly head of 1-2 fingers and settling into a modest 1/2 inch head with slight lacing.

S- Yes, some chocolate and grains on the nose, but not showing as much as I'd hoped. Pretty tame on the hops, which is a good change of pace for Stone.

T- Not great, but clearly good. Rich and dark, with chocolatey notes, coffee, and some nuts.

M- Again, good though not great. Goes down pretty easy, but doesn't necessarily hide the 9.2%.

D- Good in this area, too. Pleasant enough, and worth a try, but not amazing.

Overall, glad I tried it. I find it better than their Smoked Porter, but not near their IRS.

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Photo of cwps48
4.13/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed on 3-31-10. Poured into a standard pint glass.

A: Pitch black with a nice two finger, brown head (somewhat of a vigorous pour though). Very slight lacing (limited at the top only).

S: Lots of chocolate, quite malty. Has a smooth creaminess to it (from the oatmeal).

T: Malty, bitter, and creamy. Alcohol is a bit noticeable. I would have thought it would have mellowed out a bit more by now... And of course there's chocolate. Not hugely chocolate, but subtle and nice. Good roasty aftertaste.

M: Smooth, nice wet finish. Maybe a little low on the carbonation.

D: A bit too hot for me. This one will take me a while. Definitely a sipper.

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Photo of Hershdawg
4.8/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from a growler that I got at the end of winter storm into a pint glass

A: Dark, Black viscous pour. A small tan head from the cocoa powder. Little lacing but not much.

S: Chocolate, coffee, molasses, toffee...

T: Suprisingly good. The cocoa powder doesn't dominate the flavor and rather complements the oatmeal stout. The malt flavors dominate. Over all a well balance oatmeal stout. It aged well.

M: Silky. Almost like milk chocolate but closer to Guinness.

D: As much as I could drink this all day I know some can't. It takes me a while to go through but that enhances the experience.

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Photo of loving44
4.09/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured thick and slow. I drank this back to back with a Rogue Shakespeare Stout and it was basically like comparing water to whole milk. The head rose quickly and bubbles away to a thin mocha film in about 30 seconds.

S: The first sent that fills my nose is alcohol... followed by rich RICH cocoa. The oatmeal really brings out a deep and inviting cocoa flavor... like chocolate oats.... It's really great when you get past the alcohol.

T: I was expecting this to be really roasty... it turned out the roasty flavors were there, but mellowed greatly (I'm assuming the oatmeal had to do with this) and chocolate. Not nearly as bitter as I would expect. Just a lingering cocoa taste on the tongue. Completely different from hop bitterness. The cocoa isn't overpowering at all. Slight alcohol burn, but not as much as in the aroma.

M: thick and smooth. Lighter than an Imperial Stout, and slightly more syrupy/oily than an Oatmeal Stout respectively. As the beer warms it becomes even more creamy while keeping it's imperial heavyness. I don't know how to describ it except this is how I expeted Guinness to feel in the mouth before I was old enough to drink...

D: Are you kidding me... I'm done before I've poured that last bit of the bomber in the glass!

Overall, I'm glad Stone brewed this one, whether it be because of a hop shortage or not. I think they have a lot to offer other than hop bombs and this is a prime example. Truly artistic craft beer.

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Photo of awall422
4.15/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

black pour with a two-finger light brown head that faded fairly quickly but left nice lacing. smell is subtle, not overpowering chocolate, a bit of alcohol and the usual imperial stout roasty etc etc. taste is mildly bitter, again balanced chololate, but nothing unusual. Mouthfeel was nice and rich, the oatmeal doing it's job nicely. pretty easy to drink for an imperial stout. overall i'd call this an above average version of the style, but not an "oh my god this is amazing" beer.

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Photo of CoalCellar
4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Based on the reviews thus far I expected a really harsh alcohol/bitter taste with this beer. I must say I was pleasantly disappointed.

A: Jet black motor oil/engine sludge with a nice brown head like all big stouts should have.

S: Roasted grains, chocolate, coffee, cocoa, fruit.

T: Very nice. Lots of cocoa and chocolate, roasted grains, a hint of bitter chocolate on the back of the tongue. The alcohol is evident, but not harsh. This should age VERY nicely.

M.: The mouthfeel of this beer is a beautiful thing. This is where Stone really put those oats to work. Creamy and thick, this stout doesn't disappoint.

D: Big stouts in general are not very drinkeable, usually one bottle will do ya. This is a delicious beer, and drinking a bomber could easily take the place of dinner...(a lucous chocolate/oatmeal dinner that is....)

Good job Stone, keep up the great work! Glad I've got some of these to cellar.

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Photo of cindiwindi1025
4.28/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Black, black, black in appearance. No head to speak of, there was a little spray of dark brown of fizz at pour that dissipated right away and left little to no lacing.

S: Can't get a good smell on this one, nothing distguishable other a roasted smell.

T: Bitter chocolate, coffee, there is a smoky burnt taste here but has a tinge of sweetness that balances out the bitter, alcohol left on the palate with some bitter roasted malt.

M: Little carbonation but the bitterness and alcohol taste is quite dancy on the tongue. Bit of an oily feel.

D: This is very smooth for a bitter stout, however, it is quite heavy. A big beer, that's for sure, not overly complex or layered in flavoring just thick and potent. Tastes good but personally I cannot finish an entire glass.

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Photo of Goregazm
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Appearance: Wow, this beer looks exactly like oil! Rich, thick, and black as night. Has an awesome, frothy black head which lasts for a good minute and leaves some nice lacing on the glass.

Smell: This beer smells like rich, dark chocolate. Has the scents of coffee, black licorice, molasses, cocoa, and some toasty malts. Very, very nice.

Taste: The coffee and chocolate flavors hit you right off the bat. After that, it transitions into a creamier taste, where the oatmeal and cocoa strike the taste buds. Has a toasty, almost burnt taste as it goes down. The alcohol taste is strong, but not overly done.

Mouthfeel: Malty and creamy, like the feeling of a melted chocolate bar. Not too tingly or acidic on the tongue. Aftertaste is more bitter then sweet, with the flavor of burnt coffee beans and cocoa on the palate.

Drinkability: This beer is strong and heavy, with a great mixture of both bitterness and sweetness. It's stronger then a lot of other stouts, but for me, that's just fine. If your into stouts with a strong taste and a sweet undertone, get a hold of this. It might fill you up a little, but trust me, it's worth it.

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Photo of stawn
4.36/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours a thick BLACK with a dark cocoa cap.
Smells of chocolate, alcohol and slight wood chips. Smooth warming alcohol with an aftertaste of dark chocolate. A small amount of bitterness lingers on the back of the tongue. The oatmeal comes through and gives a great thick silky mouthfeel. Alcohol isn't hidden in this, but its very balanced. Lacing sticks nicely down the glass. Tasty!

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Photo of jpalarchio
4.18/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Complete black-out pour with a nice mocha colored head. Good lacing that seems to stay well on the glass. Bitter is a good description, it'll be interesting to see if that mellows out as it ages. Alcohol is very hidden until you make it through the bottle. Overall it's mighty tastey and well worth picking up several bottles.

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Photo of Silenus89
4.01/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass. POurs dark brown with slight carbonation

S. Roasted oats, bitter chocolate and cream

T. Coffee and chocolate, finish is bitter malts and molasses

M. Smoooth and medium to full bodied

D. Very drinkable beer even with 9.2% i didnt even notice it while drinking but i could feel it after.

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Photo of jdaelhousen
3.15/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pitch black colored body, small amount of head that disapates quickly, however the brown colored head just looks like chocolate milk suds.

Aroma contains strong hints of cocoa combined with roasted espresso, oats and a hop bitterness of earth & pine. Alcohol percentage is also very noticeable from the initial smells.

Taste contains an up front mark of roasted espresso/coffee notes and chocolate. The high ABV is immediately noticeable and produces a very smokey flavor at the center. At that point, the flavor of hop kicks in to give off a counter kick of bitterness.

Aftertaste leaves a roasty, malty, coffee and chocolate flavor on the palate, as the alcohol warms the back of the throat. The bitterness is too much however, and does not blend well whatsoever with the sweetness of the chocolate.

Overall, a disappointment after quality anniversary ales the last couple of years.

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Photo of lifebeer
3.53/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

a. poured dark brown/black with a finger of mocha head that hung around as a thin wispy film on the surface

s. the usual: licorice, chocolate, hoppy sweetness, coffee

t. roasted coffee beans and dark malts, bitterness more from hops than chocolate, finishes with a noticeable alcohol punch

m. medium for the style, not thick and velvety as is the case for many (the best) oatmeal stouts.

d. its not so thick, so its fairly drinkable, although the alcohol punch will take you out if you dont take it easy

overall, i'm somewhat disappointed here. no thick mouthfeel, no strong bitter chocolate flavor, just roasted coffee and alcohol. its possible that this wasnt stored in the best conditions (new beer distributors in NYC--a non-conditioned warehouse).

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Photo of electricfields
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours like I like my metal. BLACK! (I'm sorry for that last sentence. So incredibly sorry.) Looks syrupy coming out of the bottle. The head is thick and dark-ish tan but dissipates quickly. Overall, this beer is beautiful. Truly a sight to behold.

S: Sweet chocolate with a little bit of caramel and coffee.

T: I have absolutely no problem whatsoever rating this a 5. This is a nice and complex beer with a good robust roasted dark chocolate flavor coming out in front of everything with a few subtle toffee, caramel, and coffee tones coming out in the back of it. A substantial bit of well-balanced alcohol comes out in the aftertaste.

M: Thick, syrupy, and delicious.

D: A good beer to take your time with. A high alcohol content and a very substantial and complex flavor reward more involved drinking.

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Photo of dankbrew21
4.55/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed on 7/31/09

A- Pours a thick motor oil black body with a chocolaty brown head that gained rising speed as I poured, overflowing the sides of the glass. Fair lacing.

S- Awesome aroma. Dark chocolate, some coffee. Some sour characteristics. I think I can sense a hint of oatmeal...

T- Silky mouthfeel. Not as rich as I expected, and a reoccuring coppery taste that I keep running into recently...hope it's not my taste buds. I taste a lot of cherry and a medium fluffy chocolate taste, not much bitterness though. Complex flavors and lots of them, good carbonation, kind of light. Flovor sticks with you for a while. Great beer besides that weird copper taste.

D- Very drinkable.

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

I really had high hopes, but was ultimately let down. As it stands, this is a good stout, no questions asked -- but I thought the bar would be raised a bit higher for Stone in general, and especially considering this has an anniversary label on it.

A - Low, beige head. Black.

S - I'm getting distinctive roastiness. Coffee/espresso. A hit of that baker's cocoa, but nothing that screams "chocolate!"

T - It's good. It has ample roastiness, and the oatmeal one would expect from an oatmeal stout. The hints of bittersweet chocolate. But ultimately I'm left thinking "good imperial stout, but does this really deserve 12th Anniversary status?" A very forgettable beer.

M - About right.

D - The ABV is hidden rather well, but I still wouldn't be having more than one 22.

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Photo of tangentrider
4.3/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Black beer with a disappearing brown head.

S: Dark chocolate and a touch of dried fruit.

T: Bitter chocolate, touch of sweetness, coffee bitterness on the back of the tongue. Finishes with a fading light sweetness and a clear coffee bitterness.

MF: Smooth feel with light carbonation. A bit chewy.

D: Good oatmeal stout and a very good chocolate stout. This one is worth a sit-down savoring.

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Photo of TonyT
3.59/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I've had this from 22 oz. bombers (one that has met its fate with the ceramic tile of the kitchen floor...yes I'm ashamed)...
But I thought that it would be a better/more fair rating from a tap...

Poured into the glass (both from the tap and bottle), as perfect as a glass of motor oil...(as many other posts have stated)...I would say like New Jersey Lake Sludge (I can't wait for the replies on that one...I've looked for my own snipes (as a kid) thank you very much...)...

The taste mellows out while the pour gets warmer, much like the bottle.

The alcohol taste is more apparent as it warms..., but I would not say that it has such an "oatmeal taste", I was expecting more of a Rogue Chocolate Stout meets/ Sammy Smith's...but for all around it was good.

...It definitely has its own character and holds up on its own...I am interested to see how this brew ages...(like other posts have stated).

Stone Rocks...

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Photo of mkabull
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A= dark black with a light brown foamy head that is minimal
S= Good roasted malt smell with burnt and roasted odors predominating
T= lovely velvety stout flavor tastes very young ( I wish I bought a second bottle to age ) roasted malt and dark caramel flavors has a guiness like soured tate to it .
M= thick velvet milkshake-like pour with a cream like body when you drink it
D= I love this beer great taste and sipping drinkability can't enjoy to many of these in one night and maybe that's a good thing so if you buy alot they will last longer .

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Photo of jamesm7485
3.79/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

For something called bitter chocolate ... i was expecting alot more chocolate bitterness i mean rogues chocolate stout has more upfront chocolate than this.

It pours damn near like Hershey syrup and is pitch black

To be honest i dont really smell alot at all

the taste is good the chocolate isnt nearly as upfront as the rogue but its still there

mouthfeel is good not as smooth or creamy as id expect from a oatmeal stout

drinkability is good despite the abv

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Stone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout from Stone Brewing
4.1 out of 5 based on 968 ratings.
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