Stone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout | Stone Brewing

970 Ratings
no score
Send samples
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.

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 970 |  Reviews: 705
Photo of evilcatfish
4.24/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Holy cow, this is delicious. I never had it fresh and it being a few years old I wasn't sure what to expect. Slight head, with a very dark brown color. A nice nose of bakers chocolate with a taste of bitter chocolate, molasses, and coffee roastiness. Wish Stone would bring this back as I want more

 298 characters

Photo of Beefeater57
4.74/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: This is one of the blackest, thickest beers I've seen. Like pouring oil into a pint glass. Black/dark espresso brown with a thin mocha brown head with little retention.

S: Toasty malt smell, with a strong sense of milk chocolate. Hint of oatmeal. A very nice smell.

T: Wow, simply delicious. Smooth, love the chocolate and oatmeal flavors together. Like drinking gorp. There is a slight hop flavor in the finish which is a nice compliment. Not overpowering, just enough to show you it is there. Very similar to Young's Double Chocolate, just with a small kick of hops. Really, really good. After a while, you get a strong alcohol flavor on the tongue.

M: Thick, chewy - just like a stout should be.

D: This is one of the best stouts I've ever had. ABV is 9.2% so it will take care of you for a while. It's smooth and the flavors are amazing together. A little strong on the hops for a stout, but it is a welcome change. Wow, just a great beer.

 950 characters

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

Picked up a 22oz bottle from New Beer.

Poured into a snifter...pours motor oil black, a vigorous pour gives a small amout of mocha head, that quickly fades away.

The smell is great, it smells like fudge brownies, oatmeal, some vanilla and roasted malts.

The taste is also interesting...tastes like a 70% cacao bar, but not the crappy one you buy at you local food store. The cacao flavor is on par with a Michel Cluize chocolate. There are also flavors of toasted oats, vanilla and the finish and aftertaste are similiar to chewing on a pure cacao nib.

Great offering from Stone, this one will age nicely.

 609 characters

Photo of johnbjaeger
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of prsguitarsr4me
4.3/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One of the better beers I've had recently. Recommended. It pours dark, but actually doesn't taste or feel as dark as it looks. Taste is very good, easy to drink. Definitely lots of chocolate - and I like that. This beer is quite good, but not like some other Stones. I also prefer a Samuel Smith or an Old Rasputin - a little more interesting to me, but this is very good.

Purchased at Kokoman in New Mexico.

 409 characters

Photo of engisch
4.37/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours with little head that disappears rather quickly. Black beer with a chocolatey brown head (the little amount that is there) Smell of roasted grains with a hint of chocolate. Heavy flavor with the first sip. Bitter chocolate accurately describes the initial impression of the flavors. Mmm-Mmm... Bitter sweet chocolate in a heavy oatmeal stout form.

I'm enjoying this as a sit back and relax. I only wish it had more of a head to improve it's appearance, as after the initial head disipated it looks as if I'm drinking motor oil.

Good job Stone! Another delicious brew in the standard Stone's get-the-job-done-with-one 22oz bottle.

 638 characters

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

Bomber from cellar. Looking to see how this guy was doing at the 10 month mark, and it was exceptional. Pours black with a nice brown mocha head. Aromas of powder dark chocolate with a sweeter edge, but maintaining a hop balance. This did lead on to be a richer beer, but the palate showed it needed more time to smooth out. The hops were still well integrated however and the smoothness was fantastic. Flavors of bitter chocolate and a little of the oat still kicking left me thinking how dangerous this still is at 9.2%. I'm gonna let this one continue to age, should have much more time.

 590 characters

Photo of tittymcj
4.57/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sipped this one with William Pang (Queens, NY), good friend and fellow beer connoisseur.

This one pours out incredibly thick, taking on a solid black color with a quickly dissipating light brown head. Light traces of lacing are present.

It smells like a fantastic mixture of coffee, dark roasted malts, and chocolate, as well as a nice faint touch of oatmeal creaminess. There is a strong punch of alcohol in there as well.

The taste is very deep. Lots of roasted flavor, with a lot of chocolate and coffee. Very delicious. Definitely can taste the alcohol throughout the tasting, however.

Medium bodied, with a slight acidic alcohol taste near the end of each mouthfeel. There is a definite lingering coating of the roasted chocolate and malt flavor around the mouth.

Despite the fact that this is a fairly thick, rich beer with a ton of flavor, this is very drinkable. It is definitely a sipping beer, but its so pleasant that one can't help but to drink as much as possible.

 982 characters

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

Appearance: This pours a deep black, as others have described, with no light getting through. The head was weak though and was gone almost immediately.

Smell: The smell was delicious, sweet, chocolatey, but it weakened when the head disappeared.

Taste: The taste was very reminiscent of the rogue chocolate stout, but perhaps a little sweeter from the oatmeal. Bitter? yes the hops play their role but things seem to be well balanced, a solid stout, very tasty but not mind blowing. I paired this with a hot link with Sweet Baby Rays bbq sauce, what do you boys know about that. Southside Chicago!!! It was damn good.

Mouthfeel: Chewy and delish.

Drinkability: Very drinkable, only reason I wouldn't give this a five is the alcohol.

 736 characters

Photo of jlb307
3.88/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a snifter.

A: Very good looking brew. Poured black, with a nice thick dark brown head. Pretty good lacing, which actually took on a reddish hue as it clung to the glass.

S: Pretty consistent with other imperials. Smacked of malts and dark mocha. Semi-sweet.

T: Pretty bitter on the first few sips. Kind of mellowed as it warmed, which only left a slightly bitter aftertaste. Tasted more of a hop-type flavor rather than a bitter chocolate.

M: Very smooth. Clinged to the gums and roof of the mouth rather pleasantly.

D: If served slightly warmer than normal, it's pretty good. I might have this again.

 616 characters

Photo of Goldfish19
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

~ Purchased this 22 oz bomber from New Beer Distributors in Manhattan, NY. This stout pours black with a dark tan head that vanishes into oblivion. It smells of bitter chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, and a touch of alcohol. The taste is amazing! It's smooth, silky, and highly drinkable. At 9.2% ABV, this went down effortlessly.

A must try. Highly recommended! ~

 367 characters

Photo of PatrickSwayze
4.11/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled July 2008 & enjoyed on March 21st 2012

A: Pours a deep thick oily black. Seriously so damn dark with a dark beige brown head

S: You really get the roasty booze scent with lingering chocolate up front

T: The flavor has really held up in this beer with wonderful light carbonation with an almond nuttiness blend with roast and sweet chocolate. Raisins and figs fall through and are more noticeable at the finish

M: Very full bodies with light carbonation a medium sweetness that allows one to indulge in the entire bottle solo.

O: Has been cellared in proper conditions and it really shows. Flavors are bold & rich, complementing of each other with  every sip. Very pleased with this, and i still have 3 more tucked away. 

 735 characters

Photo of HenryPorter7777
4.21/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Another classic Stone offering: balanced, clean, with a great finish. Bourbon, chocolate, coffee. Drink again.

110 characters

Photo of FishGetter
3.65/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Stone black apperance with a thin creamy head that quickly disapates however leaving small ring around glass.

Slight hint of oats and dark chocolate hide behind a roasted grain.

This one will put hair on your chest! Watch out ladies! Stong alcohol presents with dark chocolate tones and slight oat taste.

Excellent creamy mouthfeal. The oats work there magic here.

This one could use some time to mellow out a bit. Much warming going down the throat. Have another bottle, looking forward to re-visiting this offering.

 521 characters

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

Got this bottle from Worm...thanks for this and others.
Enjoyed just over years after it was brewed (Nov 2010) in the Stone XII anniversary glass.

A- real black with a great milk chocolate colored thick head that climbs the side of the glass.

S- Lots of molasses and cocoa. Bitterness with a little "green" aroma.

T- Tons of Bitter, Bitter chocolate that is great for melted hot chocolate but a little overpowering for a beer. Tastes like cold "hot chocolate".

M- Awesomely thick and perfect for an anniversary style oatmeal stout. Rivals some of the best stouts in the world.

D- I would love to have about one of these every two years to see how it ages, but more than that is a bit much unless you are looking to drink a candy bar.

Cool for an anniversary treat but deffinately not a daily drinker.

 806 characters

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

A hard pour produces only 1.5 fingers of head that slowly dissipates to only a thin layer...and barely any lacing. But that's okay since the lack of head better shows off the delicious mud lurking underneath.

This beer is black - black like a black hole. No light can escape. Inky. Viscous.

The first sip is sweet dark cherries and chocolate - distinct cocoa on the finish. Some spiciness underneath (cloves?) and delicious burnt toffee.

The nose is interesting - in that it's not as sweet as expected but a bit bready and yeasty.

Mouthfeel has a distinct alcohol boozyburn - which frankly balances the sweetness nicely.

Great stuff on a cold evening.

 656 characters

Photo of RoBotGod
4.67/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer was done well and had the typical characteristics of and oatmeal stout with a little stone twist. The nose and pour were spot on. Low carbonation and thick black with a dark tan coffee head. The mouth feel was the best part. It was well balanced instead of over the top in one area like some of stones beers. The alcohol was strong but not over powering. The chocolate part was the best. They used a bitter dark chocolate which gives it a little different taste then what you expect. Its not as smooth and its the difference between chocolate with milk fat in it and real coco use to cook with. An excellent call in ingredients. The beer is great to drink now, and will also lay down for a few years as well.

 718 characters

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

Opened this bad boy during a family gathering this weekend.
Apperance: Wow, very dark as it should as name says it all, bitter chocolate. Poured in a snifter glass and right away you get the chocolate brown head. Very nice.
Smell/Taste: Smell was very appealing to me because my love for cocoa, that thick creamy aroma. This brew comes the closest to a real flavor of roasted cocoa/caramel flavor at the end.
Mouthfeel: Just what I expected, rich creamy feel as the choco roasted flavor hits the palate along with that smooth malt/caramel tinge while the 9.2%abv balances it all as it goes down.
Definitely a special brew for special occasions for all to enjoy over and over again.

 681 characters

Photo of k3n
3.94/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber.

A: Pours pitch black with a rich brown head of tiny bubbles.

S: Roasty. hm. Can't get much else on the nose here...

T: Roasted black-coffee bitterness. Dry, bitter cocoa. Finish feels like chocolate milk.

M: The best part, imo. Lush, creamy, mouth-filling, without being overly heavy. I've read other reviews that stated this was too thin, but to me, this strikes the perfect balance for mouthfeel.

D: Easily drinkable. 9.2% abv is nowhere to be found. Bitterness is present, but not overwhelming.

 516 characters

Photo of FrognutUnl
2.86/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Pours pretty much like used motor oil with a scant chocolate brown head that dissipates rather quickly to a swirling film on top. Smells strongly of chocolate and roasted oats after warming to near room temperature. Tastes of alcohol and bitter-sweet chocolate are the main flavors with a good bit of woodiness to the finish. The mouth feel is wonderfully thick and creamy. Overall I found it to be a little harsher than expected. The alcohol was way too present and finish didn't really fit my expectations either.

 515 characters

Photo of ThirdLap
4.1/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled at a recent tasting in a Stone glass at about 55°F. I've had Stone 12th about eight or nine times now, and I'm inclined to say the seven or so months of aging have been good to it.

Pours a dark brown with light brown edges. A lathery dark brown head quickly recedes, leaving minimal lacing.

The nose is bitter chocolate, with hints of oatmeal and soy.

Taste is largely the same, with a bitter hop-forward finish. Like any good imperial stout, a bit more depth is found as it warms, with malt, molasses, and a touch of dark fruit all coming forth.

This is relatively thin-bodied for the style, but it doesn't suffer for it too much. There is a smoothness to it that more than makes up for what it lacks in 30 weight thickness. Carbonation is relatively low and the alcohol is reasonably well-hidden. Drinkability is excellent.

Definitely worth a try if you can get your hands on it.

 895 characters

Photo of TheEremite
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a great example of an extreme beer done well. It's thick, flavorful, roasty, and chocolaty, but it's not over the top. I could easily have a few pints. It is, however, a cold weather beer. The oatmeal thickens it up quite a bit without sweetening it. There are some phenols on the nose, but they get lost in everything else. I'm looking forward to this in the bottle.

 375 characters

Photo of MEsquandoles
4.6/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz into big snifter. Released Sept2008. I hope they make this one again. Price tag shows $5.99, from my friend in AZ. I would have bought over a case were it available here.

I'm really diggin Imp Stouts right now, but I love this one. It's prolly the least sweet of the Imp Stouts I've had.

Good head retention. What it lacks in appearance and aroma - which isn't that much, but significant, compared to the other great Imp Stouts out there - Stone Bitter Choco Oat Stout makes up for in taste and mouthfeel.

I really taste the chocolate malt and some black patent malt. Very roasty and smokey, even some charred wood or peat flavours. And I really like the addition of unsweetened cacao, melding into some nice earthy, dark licorice flavours.

Oat gives a pleasant slickness, and I'm glad it's not more creamy. Very thick and velvety. Long, evolving flavor.

Some great flavours going on, but I can tell it's already melded together and smoothed out - the flavours are not competing or brash. I wouldn't age it any longer in fear of loosing any more of the wonderful cacao and smokey flavours. It could still stand to loose some smoke for some palates, but I love it just the way it is. It is much more approachable or agreeable now than it would have been fresh. It has lost some hop presence, but that's okay, given the other sources of bitterness.

Very drinkable. I've had no probable finishing bombers of this.

Highly recommended.

I can't find much wrong with this. Okay, it could be bigger; but still very enjoyable and highly drinkable for 9.2% and as the first beer of the night.

 1,597 characters

Photo of MexicanSkittel
3.93/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep black, a very thin rusted dark brown head dissipated very very fast. Leaving a rim of the dark brown ring around top of the beer.

Some roared sweet oats on the nose, barley. A bit of smokey camp fire, there was a small amount of bitter chocolate in the nose but on the back end.

There was more chocolate on the pallet along with a hint of coffee. The oats are still present. The sweetness certainly takes over the alc.

Very light carbonation, and surprisingly thin in texture for how dark the beer poured. Great finish which lingered for a decent amount of time. Started sweet but leans to a dryer bitter cocoa finish.

I'm really liking the beer, and wish the stone aniversary ales would head back this direction.

 731 characters

Photo of jkendrick
3.93/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: I don't usually note the bottle in my reviews, but I thought the description on this one was interesting. Stone says they were forced to create this particular Anniversary beer due to the hop shortage. The beer itself is pure black as you would expect. There is a bit of carbonation streaming up, but nothing on the order of a Guinness, for example. There is a nice tan head that recedes quickly leaving just a touch of lacing.

Aroma: Definitely smells of bitter chocolate! There is a bit of alcohol present in the nose, but it's not overwhelming. But it makes me think perhaps I've cracked this one a bit too soon.

Mouthfeel: The carbonation is prickly, but full-bodied beer coats the mouth nicely.

Taste: Well there's that dark, bitter chocolate. This is one definitely appropriately named. I tend to like the bitter chocolate stouts more than the sweeter versions, so this is right up my alley. There is some sweetness that provides balance, but it isn't cloying. It is definitely a bit boozy and warms the belly. It's not TOO much though a bit longer in the cellar might have done it some good. There is more bitterness in the finish.

Overall impression: Well, as I said, it may have done me good to wait a bit longer before cracking this, but it is still a fine, complex and well-balanced stout. If you like your chocolate of the bitter variety, you owe it to yourself to seek this out. I am a hophead, but I kind of wish the hops shortage had lasted longer to force Stone to produce other "hop alternative" brews. Well done, Stone! I'll definitely grab another bottle of this and keep it cellared a bit longer in hopes that the alcohol mellows a bit. In my opinion, that could make this an A or an A+ beer.

 1,728 characters

Stone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout from Stone Brewing
4.1 out of 5 based on 970 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.