12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout | Stone Brewing

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12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout
977 Ratings
12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout12th 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.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 977 |  Reviews: 707
Photo of rxdrewthejew
4.12/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had that back when it first came out at Daily Pint, but finally getting around to reviewing it in bottle form. Poured into my Stone IRS tulip.

A: Pitch black and thick, but not much head. Head is almost reddish brown but leaves very little retention although it appears solid lacing.

S: Nose it dominated by chocolate, as you might expect, as well as a rich roasted malt.

T: Very subtle opening with hints of chocolate quickly blossoms to full blown bitter chocolate and dark fruit. Then the malt takes over, huge and toasty with even a bit of sweetness at the end.

MF: Medium bodied with a solid bit of carbonation. Surprisingly light, really, considering what the beer looks like. The bitterness of the chocolate and the strong toastiness gives the finish a biting and somewhat dry feel. Alcohol is pretty well masked and doesn't really feel like 9.2%.

D: I feel like this was a bit more chocolaty on tap. Still, the flavor is very good and unique. Certainly not the hop bomb you'd expect from a Stone anniversary beer, but this is extremely good for the style. The alcohol is not overstrong, so drinking a bomber is not out of the question, but I couldn't drink this all night long, either. Personally I like their imperial stout more, but this is a very nice brew and I'm glad I had the chance to enjoy it.

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Photo of objectivemonkey
4.33/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Into an imperial pint glass, pours a dark brown color, almost oily out of the bottle, but inch plus head of brown head, settles to a thin film, and has a lot of lacing. Nice.

The aroma is pretty nice. Chocolate? Check. Oatmeal? Check. Coffee, roasted malt, caramels? Yes. Quite nice. A little laid back, more sumptuous than ravenous, which works well here. Taste follows suit. Actually pretty mellow and nuanced, the various chocolates, roasted malts, etc, play off each other respectfully, but still has a bitter bite, some ABV power to be respected. The body is thick enough, subtle carbonation, a bit warm. Its interesting, as it comes off as both strong and gentle.

In retrospect, an interesting brew, one I would've paid attention more had I not been 'talking with' the wife so much. Oh well, it was definitely catchy, thoroughly drinkable for its strength and weight, but doesn't quite break that barrier of must-try stouts.

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Photo of Hokies
3.98/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep black with deep red outlines on the exterior, with a nice one inch brown head and leaves a nice lace on the glass.

At first you can smell the coffee followed by the malt and then the bitter dark chocolate smell makes its way through. Their is also a light smokiness to it.

The taste is like the bitterness from dark chocolate with an alcohol kick to it. As this one warms up the oatmeal smoothness comes through with hop bitterness at the end.

This is one smooth beer with low carbonation and goes down quite easily. It is a sipper but I could drink this one like a session beer.

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Photo of BigJTrucker
3.95/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep brown with a thin cocoa brown colored head that settles fairly quickly. Smell has a unique bready aroma to it, maybe even some figs or plums. Chocolate and oak as well. Taste has a nice smoky flavor to it, and a bit of bakers chocolate flavor that comes out more in the finish. Mouthfeel is smooth, dry finish, low effervescence, maybe even a bit of powdery texture. Hmm. A nice tasty brew, different than what i expected. Solid.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
3.38/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Stone XII

A- Deep brownish black with a small light head, no lacing.
S- Big smokey BBQ sauce with a touch of chocolate.
T- Smokey pork flavoring?, BBQ sauce honey, cumin, paprika, and pepper spices with a good background of milk chocolate.
M- Very sweet up front with a solid smokey center and a thick molasses/black licorice finish.

Overall- Good, but I didn't detect a good choc. oatmeal stout background (like a Founders Breakfast Stout) More of a Rauchbier to me. Good but not impressive.

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Photo of Matty1918
3.97/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle.

Pours a pure black color with a minimal brown head. Not much lacing. Looks like watery molases after the head dissapears.

Aroma is of chocolate, coffee, mocha and sweet malts. Very nice.

Taste is bitter up front then the coffee and chocolate follow up. Deep roasted malts and the alcohol is always present. A sipper for sure but very nice.

nice mouthfeel. Very solid and wish I bought more than one of these.

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Photo of Risser09
4.43/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured into a snifter - 2008 bottling - Cellar temp

Appearance: Pours jet black with a 1/2" dark brown head. It dissipates quickly and leaves a murky surface above the beer. No laving remains.

Smell: Sweet cherry, chocolate liquor, light espresso, coffee, leather, caramel. Awesomely complex.

Taste: Chocolate, chocolate malt, coffee, chocolate syrup. There are a lot of deep, roasted flavors without any cloying sweetness. Lingering bitterness from the hops and coffee flavors.

Mouthfeel: Medium to heavily bodied with lots of malty bitterness. Alcohol makes a little statement of its own. Smooth and tasty.

Drinkability: This is an excellent beer. Neither the chocolate or the sweetness is cloying. I could do two bottles for sure. A winner.

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Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. Bomber > Fat snifter

This puppy pours out really heavy looking, totally black and opaque with a heavy pour allows for a solid 1" deep, dark brown thick and sticky head, moderate retention with a good amount of brown foam floating around like broken ice bergs.

The nose is very robust with caramel chocolate oats, sweet and roastie barley, peanutbutter, black pepper current in the hops aroma which is really earthy but perfectly subtle. A intense and sharp boozy heat tingles the nose at the end. Overall, sweet and roastie!

The Deep dark, bitter chocolate flavored malt is a bit more earthy and bitter than the aroma with only a slight current of caramel-like sweetness. The roastie and smokey edge is very robust with charred oats and grains and a wonderful roundish-feeling smokey effect. The hops are there for balance in a brew like this, but this is STONE, West-coast bitter hops must play a vital role, and they certainly do, it's a classic leafy, bitter hop bite but it is in fine tune with the heady malt. The flavor overall is complex but a bit "green", it does reccomend aging, and I would totally agree with that. The sharp boozy finsih intensifies the bitter hops as well. This one would be great as a two year old.

full, big body for sure, not really thick and dense but smooth...a meal in a bottle!

wisdom comes with age.

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Photo of hreb
4.28/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cold 22oz bottle allowed to warm up a bit before dispensing into a pint glass. Beer pours like deep, dark brown motor oil. Aroma is of: chocolate. Roasty things. Oh, and alcohol. A thin brown head has just a hint of red.

The smell really is delicious until the astringent whiff of alcohol comes in, unfortunately. Up until that part, it reminds me of my all time favorite, Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout. The flavor is deep, complex, and bitter. Also, very creamy in the mouth. The flavor is of chocolate, of course, but it's neither sweet nor bitter at first, simply aromatic. Then, grainy cereal? Very complex barley flavors, in any case. And a interesting hoppy bitterness. Carbonation is muted. The aftertaste brings on the bitterness of the chocolate, a slight alcohol burn, and a dry kind of bitter on my teeth. Actually, it's surprisingly pleasant.

The indicates that this beer was a result of the hop shortage / price increase. The idea of chocolate as a bittering agent seems so obvious, and it works so well in this case. It also indicates that this is a July 2008 production, and I wonder if I'm drinking it far too young.

One thing I notice is that as it warms in the glass, it's changing, but not really getting better, as I'd expect.

Overall, I think this is a really good ale. I would love to try it along side other chocolate stouts, like Brooklyn's and Rogue's. I'll definitely pick up some more to try after a year or more of cellaring, if this is a limited brewing.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
4.03/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Man, drinking all these anniversary brews is becoming a part time job it seems.

Pours black with a tan head. Nose is thick malts and some chocolate and a wee bit of molasses. Flavor is thick. Minor molasses with real dark chocolate tones. Sweet almost berry thing is there too. Feel is smooth and thicker on liquid. Carbonation is low, but that seems appropriate. Overall pretty nice to drink. Nothing real crazy or outlandish, but still a nice brew.

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Photo of OlieIPA
4/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have to thank Tdizzle for so kindly sharing this great beer with me.

A: Black-viscous liquid splashed nicely into my glass, revealing a 1-finger head. Very appealing.

S:Chocolate and caramel

T: Not as much chocolate as the smell indicates, but enough to pinpoint it out. Bitterness is more noticeable during the first half, then subsides leaving hints of alcohol warmness.

M: Thick and full; carbonation is light...almost none in fact.

D: Very enjoyable on the palate.

Overall: Stone has never let me down, and this beer continues that tradition. Up there amongst the best choc. Stouts.

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Photo of neenerzig
4.73/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Enjoyed by me on-tap earlier tonight. Served in a pint glass. Draws a very dark brown, almost black color. The tan head is about 1/3-1/2 inch when served to me. Settles to a nice brown ring lining the inside of the glass along with a very decent surface coating. Has very nice lace. Has roasted sweet malt aromas with hints of coffee and chocolate notes. Tastewise there are sweet, roasted chocolate malt, bitter coffee and some hops, rounded out with a sort of oatmeal taste. Very good balance here, a bit better balanced than out of the bottles. Has a crisp, smooth full bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Extremely drinkable, especially considering the high ABV here. Very good indeed!


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Photo of smcolw
4.25/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Nice initial head that sticks around and leaves wonderful ring lace. Technically black where light cannot penetrate even the edge.

Peppery and smoky aroma. Reminiscent of chocolate ice cream.

Smoky flavor behind the thick coffee notes. The finish is a nice combination of hop and black patent malt. It's creamy with a little bit of the alcohol warmth that one would expect.
Nearly perfect in the body--rich with enough cutting carbonation from making it oily.

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Photo of Zorro
4.48/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours and looks like used 10-40W motor oil, promising.

Light proof black beer with a small brown head, oh yeah it's not a porter.

Bittersweet scent that you can smell from a distance. Getting up close this is a boozy bittersweet chocolate beer with a hint of vanilla, berries and wood. Strongly scented with chocolate almost a dark chocolate bar in beer form.

Taste starts out sweet and chocolate with a silky mouth feel a lot like melted chocolate. A little sweet and a little bitter with a trace of coffee and malt char in the flavor. Big vanilla flavor so I suspect white oak or Bourbon was involved somehow. British Ale fruity flavors show as the beer warms up quite a bit. Alcohol completely hidden.

Mouthfeel is silk.

Don't give many 5s but this beer deserves it for drinkability. At room temperature and this just keeps getting tastier! Smooth as sin, really close to drinking expensive chocolate instead of eating it. Think best chocolate beer ever.

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Photo of beveritt
3.68/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: Poured from a brown bomber into a Duvel chalice. Stone silk-screened label with a flying gargoyle holding up a beer mug.

Appearance: Pours with just over 1 finger of dark brown head. This settles slightly, down to about half its original size. By the end of the beer it is a few wispy islands of foam, leaving behind decent lacing. The beer itself is black. Black as a black hole. No light can escape its pull.

Smell: An almost overwhelming chocolate smell. Almost a chocolate liquor due to the slightly sweet alcohol smell. If you can work past that, you get hints of roasted barley and a little hop greenness.

Taste: Chocolate is definitely more subtle in the taste than the smell. Flavors of roasted barley bitterness, semi-sweet chocolate, and warming alcohol all seem to blend evenly.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation level is average. Body is decent, with an almost slickness from the oats..

Drinkability: Some really nice flavors in here, The chocolate is great and the oats add a nice smoothness. Right now, however, I think the alcohol is too prevalent. I would love to try thi beer in a few years. Maybe I will see what I can pick up to cellar.

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Photo of deltatauhobbit
4.36/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Solomon420 for sending this want extra my way :)

Pours a dark black color with a great sized dark tan head, fades slowly to leave some patchy lacing.

Smell is a good mix of chocolate and coffee, coffee being the more controlling aroma.

Taste is a rush of chocolate and coffee with a surprisingly strong dark fruit presence, viscosity is a bit thinner than I thought it would be, nice warming sensation which hints at the alcohol content but is still decently hidden.

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Photo of beerphan
3.23/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

on tap -> 12 oz goblet

Arrived a dark black with a nice dirty brown head.

Nose: Malty, some cocoa, alcohol

Here's where it went wrong for me. The chocolate flavors were present, and the bitterness was medium and lasting, but i just couldn't get past the smokey meat flavor. Made me think rauchbier, over the top rauchbier. I let some friends sip and they had the same feeling, taste like bad meat.

I love stone and will give this a try next time a see it, to see if i was mistaken, but my advice is to avoid on tap and grab a bottle to age.

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Photo of grub
4.12/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

either fartingdog or jgaston hooked me up with this one, can't remember which. thanks dave and andy!

22oz bottle. sampled aug 31/08.

pours opaque inky black with a very small dense brown head. the head quickly drops to a ring around the glass and a light swirl of bubbles on top of the beer. very little lace.

aroma is great. alcohol. bittersweet and dark chocolate. hint of espresso. nice fruity character too that i didn't really expect. caramel. hint of smoke. bread and biscuit malts. hint of light citrusy hops.

taste is good. dark and bittersweet chocolate. coffee. bit of espresso. light alcohol, but more as a gentle spreading warmth on the way down than in the taste. just over medium bitterness level, but coming across more as chocolate than hops. light caramel sweetness. nice fruity character. roasty.

mouthfeel is good. medium carbonation level. nice big body.

drinkability is good. nice balance. good mix of stout and chocolate. will be neat to see how this one changes with age.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.38/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle into a snifter.

Pours a dense black (that doesn't look unlike motor oil) with a finger of charred looking burnt mocha colored head. This fizzles down to just the thinnest ring with some thin wisps across the center that leaves behind a small smattering of lace and brown oily residues down the sides of the glass. The aroma is thick with dark bittersweet chocolate and dry oatmeal notes that are followed by some prominent coffee and dark roasted quality. There is also a stiff waft of heat that flows in and out of the other aromas.

The taste is more bittersweet chocolate and burnt toast character that is balanced out by some softer malty notes of caramel and maybe even a bit of dark fruits. There is also a nice smoky aspect that appears to rear its head once in a while as well as dry oatmeal notes that hangs on the palette with some lingering bitterness. The mouthfeel is full bodied with a thick and chewy (even almost viscous as it warms) feel at times but still moves effortlessly across the palette thanks to that oatmeal character. Some heat is definitely present but thanks to the big flavors and overall smooth body of this, it never becomes distracting.

A new beer from Stone that tastes like a burnt chocolate chip cookie and drinks like a champ? Sign me up for more please! I can't wait to see what a little age on this will do, as it really does feel like it will smooth out even more over time.

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Photo of Beer-Zombie
4.76/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I never thought that I would ever get my hands on this beer!

pours black with a dark chocolate head. the aroma is very dry and chocolatey. the taste is dark roasted malts, chocolate, subtle oatmeal. very full bodied! to describe this beer you could sum it up with one word...BIG!

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Photo of 1759Girl
4.36/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A> Black as night. Far too dark to gauge the liveliness... The head was cafe latte colored with big bubbles, and it seemed to shimmer with gold flecks. Good lacing, also.
S>BIG BITTERSWEET CHOCOLATE nose, slightly smoky, and slightly alcoholic.
T>Bitter start, full drystout middle, then an interesting transition from bitter to chocolate and back to a bitter&smoky hang. Gotta give it to Stone for being such stars at Complexity.
M> Thick silk, Gorgeous. I remarked on this to a friend before I even started to pay attention to the tasting.
D> I couldn't drink too much of it, but the pint I poured was lovely. It's a darn good beer.

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Photo of rkuhnel
4.47/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a 22 oz bottle, this poured poured like old motor oil into my Duvel Glass and was a very dark brown (almost black) with very thick tan head and very sticky lacing. Nose is coffee, chocolate,and ripe figs. Mouthfeel is very full bodied. Flavor is very rich with chocolate and ripe fruit and some alcohol.In the finish you detect for the first time a tiny bit of hops in the slight bitterness. This is simply a great beer.

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Photo of DefenCorps
3.68/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle split with my roommate. It's his birthday and I'll be nice

A: Jet black with a dark brown head that recedes slowly to a disk and over 30 minutes, a ring. Almost black highlights

S: Bitter chocolate, mild sweetness that's creamy in nature, mild plum/raisin-like fruitiness. Not a whole lot but still very appealing

T: If there was a truth in advertising award for beer, this would be a definite contender. Bitter chocolate oatmeal stout, you say? Well, that's what you get. Starts off with a plenty of bitter chocolate and ton of oatmeal smoothness. I know that's a description of feel but when feel makes its presence felt this much, it's almost an apt flavor descriptor. Unfortunately, there's a good deal of alcohol heat in this, especially as it warms up. Fizzles out on the finish with a mildly bitter finish

M: Ridiculously smooth and the rather low carbonation enhances that but the alcohol heat is waaaay too noticeable.

D: No trouble drinking this but in a year, I won't be sharing this

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Photo of Pencible
4.33/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Stone's 12th anniversary ale. This poured pitch black with a bit of dark tan head. It smelled like mild bitter chocolate, roasted malt, and alcohol. It tasted like very bitter chocolate with resinous pine hops, with a bit of earthy oatmeal malt, and had noticeable alcohol taste. It was thick with no carbonation, and had a strong bitter aftertaste with alcohol warming. Overall this was not as sweet or delicious as I hoped (similar to Young's). This still had a very bold, clean flavor that nice to sip, but also able to drink regularly. Solid but not spectacular.

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Photo of mattffrost
4.12/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Beer is a very dark brown almost black. Head is a dark tan color. Head is gone very quickly I notice.

S: I get smells of coffee, roasted malt and a little hint of chocolate. Very pleasant smell.

T: Very bitter taste like the name implies. A bit of Chocolate and expresso taste to me. Roated malt comes out.

M: Bitter to me but a good bitter. Its a nice change to drink a choclate that is not sweet.

D: Very strong bitter beer, a 22oz bottle is plenty good for me. Not a beer to rush just sit back and enjoy it. Take your time.

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12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout from Stone Brewing
Beer rating: 4.11 out of 5 with 977 ratings