Stone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic Ale | Stone Brewing

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89
very good
896 Ratings
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Stone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic AleStone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic Ale
BEER INFO

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

Style: Belgian IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.60%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
The Stone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic Ale is a Strong Golden Belgian style ale highly hopped with American hops (Ahtanum, Amarillo and Simcoe). The beer pours pale golden with a thick and creamy white head of foam. The aroma is full of depth: nuances of pepper, clove, and banana from the Belgian yeast strain, and the resiny citrus notes from the American hops blend together nicely to provide a complex aromatic character. The taste is spicy, hoppy and fruity, with a very dry and a pleasant bitter end. The bitterness lingers nicely, and provides a refreshing finish that leads you to want to drink more and more of this beer!

Added by froghop on 08-04-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ratings:
896
Reviews:
496
Avg:
3.98
pDev:
10.55%
 
 
Wants:
44
Gots:
257
For Trade:
14
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 896 |  Reviews: 496
Photo of WesWes
4.42/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a nice golden color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is great! It has a really nice pilsner malt scent along with an earthy, yet fruity yeast aroma. There is also some hop bitterness as well. The taste is great as well. This is a very smooth beer with loads of character. It has a solid malt base and tastey yeast finish. It's quite bitter with a mildly earthy finish. The mouthfeel is good. It is a medium/full bodied beer with good carbonation. This is a tremendous beer. It's incredibly drinkable without lacking complexity and a bit of warmth.

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Photo of Jayli
4.07/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a nice deep golden color with a two finger rocky off white head. There is nice head retention leaving sticky lacing on the side. The first I noticed in the nose was belgian yeast, with a definite mixture of floral hops, and a touch of spice. The taste follows with the smell. Definite taste of belgian yeast, floral hops, perhaps clove spice on the tongue and some sweet malts. There is a very distinct floral after taste to it. This is a pretty light on the tongue at first and then gets meatier with a solid finish, medium carbonation, somewhat dry finish. This was a really nice beer!

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Photo of jjanega08
4.04/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A= pours a clear amber color like a darker macro lager almost. Crystal clear. A small head forms and lasts leaving decent lacing.
S= small hop notes and some yeast spice. A sweet malt character. Also but mostly hops and yeast.
T= like a well made macro lager I think. Well hopped and a good crisp bite but also a little malty smoothness with a touch of belgian yeast. Very unique and delicious!
M= crisp and smooth I would almost say undercarbonated
D= very high. This beer is very good. Unique in how smooth and clean it is. Unlike any belgian I've had very good. Thanks to johngialt for this one very good.

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Photo of hustlesworth
4.09/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- bright clear golden tangerine-apricot color with a short lived foamy off white head. a thin veneer of foam remnants sit quietly on the surface and delicate wisps of lace cling to my tulip.

S- fruity, papery, and quite phenolic, with a strong band-aid/cardboard and apple skin and 'ocean' aroma that fade as the beer airs out. some citrus and spicy pepper notes as well, floral alcohol esters, and grassy-herbal hops. hints of banana push through with pineapple greens, pear, and under ripe green fruits. overall for me it leans in the wrong direction until allowed to breathe, so patience may be virtuous.

T- dominant hop flavor from start to finish, reminding me of a belgian IPA. alot of citrus, candied lemon, orange pith, acrid white grapefruit, though not unpleasant, display how the pungency of a shit ton of west coast hops can box out the subtleties that i enjoy so much in belgian style beers. yeast aromas are rather bland and are nearly unnoticeable behind the thick curtain of hops, appearing only as a faint hint of banana, white grape, and pear. it's quite a tasty brew, but my amateur palate typically expects a balance from BSPAs that allows yeast character to be slightly more prevalent. in a blind taste test, i would put a c-note on belgian IPA. finishes lightly toasty with a fresh grain flavor as the hops go from citrus to grassy and herbal and chlorophyll with a little pine.

MF- lingering hop oils but an otherwise clean finish, juicy bodied and perfect delicate prickly carbonation, mildly astringent.

D- mouth feel has me sold, and has led me to speedy consumption. i'm hung up on this one, at only 6 months old, perhaps it needed more time to mature because at this stage it is rough and hop oriented and coloring outside the lines as far as style guides go- not that that's a bad thing, but in a perfect world it would be awesome to know what's inside an $8 bottle of beer. still, good job stone, i wish i had been hip for long enough to try the past batches.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.33/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the chilled 22oz into a goblet + pint

A - A burnished golden that is resplendent and has excellent clarity. A rocky bone white cap crowns the ale of approx 3/4 inch w/ a very tight bead. The lace is like a doily in its symmetric pattern sticking to the glass. The second glass has a gentle haze, but you can see the minute bubbles rising to the surface.

S - The smell is a blend of herbal hops and subtle spice notes from belgian yeast almost like fresh cut sweet grass in its floral citrus element w/ a vegetal green bell pepper sweetness mixed with pear essence.

M - The texture is moderately full carbonation w/ a grainy herbal hop blend and a mild rush of alcohol warmth w/ hop astringency, but a mild malt sweetness combines w/ the medicinal texture

T - A grainy, bready malt taste at first w/ a hint of biscuit is paralleled by a candy-like sweet taste and a spicy, astringent american hop flavor. The hops have subtle citrus and there is a dry aspirin note w/ a navel orange mixed w/ white pepper. The taste continues to evolve with more grapefruit-like hop taste as it warms and mellows. Light toasted grain flavor and mild alcohol as it finishes w/ a taste like chewing on a sweet radish.

D - One of Stone's finest beers in the vertical epic series I have had and I love the combo of Belgian yeast and west coast hops. The taste is great and I especially enjoyed how it changed over time (6 months) from the time I first tasted it. This ale went well with my puple rice cracker topped with bavarian blue brie. I am looking forward to attempting the homebrew recipe on stonebrew.com

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Photo of WillieMoe
4.1/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly opaque, bubbly golden, with a hint of orange. Has a thin head that dissolves fairly quickly.

Has that heavy fruity belgian aroma.Hints of banana, mild citrus, coriander, clove and a mild bready malt.

Has a big hop taste, balanced with some citrusy wafts and bready yeast scents. A little harsh and fizzy at first, with a bit of a tang at the end. Has a medium body, and some good carbonation.

The alcohol is not hidden all that well. Is a very good drink, but a bit too big to drink continuously.

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Photo of Stockfan42
3.57/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

So I guess this beer should be aged till 2012 for its full flavor experience? Well im thisty now so here goes nothing.

A light goldish, yellow pour that leaves a creamy head that slowly folds down.

Very interesting aroma. Hops and cloves dominate the smell, very malty and hints of fruit lingre in the background.

Spicy like a belgiam, not over hopped and pretty malty as well. The cloves are what im guessing give it that spicy kick. Fruity undertone with some grapefruits, taste like some banana nut bread in a way.

Pretty light feel which isnt bad for 8% and goes down alright. Maybe i'll grab some more and open it when its supposed to be to make a comparison.

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Photo of zerofear13
3.58/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had Stone's 07.07.07 last year and wasn't a huge fan. This year, I think I'm going to officially stop trying these Vertical Epics. I'm just not a big fan of the flavor or the style. Pours out a gold color. Carbonated. Smells of coriander, banana, and earth-tone yeasts. Tastes follow suit. Very herb-y and spicey flavors. Not a big fan. I feel like those real prevalent hearb flavors always outdo the other tastes. Just don't really like that.

Give it a try if it's available, but only because it's rare and worth saying you've tried. Personally, if you don't like the style, this won't change your mind.

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Photo of tittymcj
3.75/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This one poured out a very clear, crisp orange color, with light head and average lacing.

Smells like cloves primarily but also some sweet malt.

The taste, has a strong sense of hoppy bitterness, with significant coriander, a very belgian beer style taste.

Mouthfeel is very light, very energetic and springy almost. Refreshing as well. There is a lingering coriander taste in the mouth.

Drinkability is very high since it is so light and not very complex, but because I don't particularly enjoy the taste, I wouldn't necessarily drink it again.

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Photo of joerodiii
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Straw colored ale with minimum head. Aroma of Duvel-like phenolics, citrus, and hops. Hops dominate the flavor throughout. The beer tastes very highly attenuated, dry and thin. Between the thinness and dryness, I don't think I could drink a lot of this beer.

Overall, it tastes like an overhopped Duvel.

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Photo of hoplover82
3.65/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy pale color with little head that leaves no lace.

Lots of cloves in the nose (which I don't like)some hints of earthy hops. Not much more than that.

Taste is a little bitterness with yeasty bread dough with earthy hops and some very interesting green apple! That's nice.

Medium to full bodied and a little dry.

Ok drinkability.

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Photo of MrMcGibblets
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a pale gold with a creamy white head. slight haze. aroma is candied tropical fruit with some yeasty spiciness and biscuits. sweet pale malts in the entry with a nice smooth, medium hop bitterness. long complex finish. light in body for this abv, nice creamy/prickly carbonation. almost as drinkable as duvel.

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Photo of JohnQVegas
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle into chalice.

Pours clear gold, almost no head, just on off-white ring.

Nose is bit of banana and clove, some apricot and citrus as well, with a wee hint of floral and resiny hops underneath. Peppery. Some alcohol. A lot going on.

Taste starts off dry, spicy, yeasty, a bit peppery, bit of alcohol, very floral, bit of apricot. Finish is dry with a lingering bitterness, yeasty.

Mouthfeel is lightly carbonated, light body, carb still has a bit of a bite. Nice beer, quite dry, but lots of very complex flavors.

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Photo of BARFLYB
3.62/5  rDev -9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle into a Chimay goblet twce. This is about five months old at the moment.

A- Vertical epic 08 pours a bright golden color with orange spots. No head to speak of whatsoever. just a bit of very faint patches of scattered white spots. A lot of bubbles are seen rising up but not enough to cover the surface with any foam. May be an off bottle.

S- 080808 has a lot of yeast and earthy tones. Bananas and cloves and other spices. Some various flowers come out with warming. Some sweet candy with malts. A nice array of hops while this BSPA resembles somewhat of a triple style.

T- A blast of the spices such as clove and pepper and the Belgian yeast jump out at the forefront with what i'm guessing to be some strain of NW U.S hop variety. Some bready malts. More fruits than in the smell starting with banana and apple and pear. Has a dry and slighty bitter aftertaste.

M- 080808 has a dry and bitter taste with a bit of alcohol presence. This does not quite fit the bill for a triple in my mind. Goes down quite easy with a light to medium body and some carbonation. The taste rolls off the tounge and does not linger.

D- At 8% only one bottle for me in a sitting. This is my 1st try at this offering from stone and while I was not blown away I am still intrigued to try the older versions and will look out for future releases although this wont be strong on my radar. Still a good offering from stone.

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Photo of bum732
4.03/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice golden orange with decent head that dissipates quickly. Smells of sweet malt, citrusy orange and lemon, faint clove, peppery hops, definite alcohol, A nice light but flavorful malt sweetness is quickly followed by a very pronounced hop bitterness at the end. Finishes fairly sweet, but somewhat crisp by the noticeable alcohol presence. Good carbonation.

A decent belgian ale, somewhat comparable to Duvel. Definitely more aggresively hopped and a very noticeable alcohol taste. Would love to see what happens to this beer in a couple years.

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Photo of Gavage
3.87/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours a clear golden yellow color with a short 1/4" head that breaks apart quickly.

Smell: alcohol, yeast, and some grassy tones are up front and some fruit sweetness in the background.

Taste: nice malt profile, yeast, grass, green grapes, apples, honey, and a nice bitterness is wrapped in a warming alcohol blanket. Overall this is a bit sweet.

Mouthfeel: crisp from start to finish. Relatively short aftertaste. Medium bodied beer.

Drinkability: this one is a slow sipper but one can quaff a few glasses of these. Decent beer but not one of my favorites in the series.

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Photo of TMB0424
3.66/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bomber into tulip.

Poured a nice hazy gold body with peach tints and a two finger white head. Head quickly reduced to a foamy cap, leaving fairly good retention throughout.

Aroma is very reminiscent of Stone's IPA - citrus (grapefruit, orange peel), freshly squeezed lemon and hops. This is backed by a slight scent of yeast with clove. Can slightly detect alcohol, as well.

First sip, I was pretty disappointed because I only picked up the IPA aspects. After a couple more, the Belgian characteristics kicked in. The grapefruit and lemon are backed by sweet malts and honey. Hints of banana. Yeast brings a nice element as well. Finishes dry and bitter after the sweet kick-off.

Mouthfeel is medium-heavy with a very crisp but very dry feel to it. Carbonation is high, but it compliments everything. Although I enjoyed this brew, I couldn't have more than one pour - the sweetness just got to me. Recommended, nevertheless.

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Photo of canucklehead
4.42/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This has been sitting in the cellar since late summer and so it seemed right to open one since I drank all my earlier versions and cannot do the vertical in 2012. This is a real nice Belgian style beer with some spice notes mixed in with the citrus notes found in Saisons. Kinda tasted like a combo of Duvel and Westmalle Triple. Lots of complexity and good balance made this very drinkable. Good Epic from these guys.

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Photo of beertunes
3.8/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into bubble pint glass (perhaps should have used chalice?). Poured with a tall, bright white head that left nice rings of lacing. A clear deep yellow, this is much paler than anticipated. The spicy, fruity aroma is typical for the style. The flavor follows the aroma closely, with the flavor not as full and rich as some others. The body is slightly thin for the style. Very drinkable, smooth and well balanced. A nicely enjoyable beer, better than average for the style.

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Photo of jokelahoma
4.2/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle at my own house, por favor.

Poured a lovely light golden color, a decent head that seemed to last a decent while.

Aroma was a strong fruity smell, with lemon seeming to dominate, yet... in a strange way, *not* lemon. A strange citrus without being really citrusy. Hard to describe. I detected lemon among the usual Belgian fruits, mostly pear, yet with a subtle citrus bearing. Difficult to describe, yet obvious once you experience it.

Taste, however, was not lemony at all. It was all Belgian pale. Good malt up front followed almost immediately by the yeast esters with just reek of fruit, but in a good way. This isn't a "Fruit Loop" beer, but it's damned close. Very evident fruit ester of lighter fruits, like apples, pears, pomegranates, even pineapples, seem to jump up front in the taste. There's some regular malt backbone, but the yeast esters quickly pushed it aside. This is a fruity beer, without actually having any fruit in it. God love those Belgian yeasts. Hops exist only to keep the malt from overwhelming everything else, and to add the citrus to the profile. Otherwise, it's all malt and yeast esters. Pretty much as it should be.

The mouthfeel is thin, which is just about right, when you get down to it. It's not watery, but there's no real work to get this one down your gullet. It pretty much drinks itself, and that's not a bad thing, considering the style.

overall, this is a very nice representation of a Belgian Strong pale ale. Lots of esters, not a lot of hops, decent malt, but not overwhelming. About what you'd expect it to be. Stone did a good representation of the style here, and it's worth trying on the off chance you can still find one. Good stuff!

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Photo of jayfarley3
4.1/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a 22oz bomber into a pint glass. Poured a hazy golden orange color with a off white head. Smell is fruity, sweet, spicy with a hint of alcohol. Tastes of sweet malt, fruit, spices and rich hops. This beer is medium bodied and very smooth for the 8.6 abv and very drinkable.

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Photo of KBoudreau66
4.22/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

bought a 22 oz and poured into a snifter. Has a honey color with some carbonation going on. Has an excellent smell of apple with a hint of alcohol. Has an excellent hoppy taste that washes down slightly dry. This is another great beer by Stone, I definitely plan on buying at least one or two more to drink and a few extra's to save till 2012.

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Photo of scootny
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A brilliantly clear honey amber brew with a clean and attractive white head. Lacing is nice and constant. Nose instantly tells you that a Belgian IPA is in your hand. Very hoppy nose. Belgian yeast and light honeyed fruit esters fold into the mix. Banana and light apples.

Taste is Belgian IPA but at a nine tenths scale. It is drinkable and quenching. Big sweet malt backbone is broad and graced with a note of honey. Hops are big without overwhelming the Belgian character. The size of this beer is perfect for the vision. In three years it should be bigger in honey and rounder in hoppiness while allowing the yeasty fruituness to blossom. It finishes clean and dry.
The significant abv is very well hidden.

Mouthfeel is dry and lightly thick. A slickness is broken up by light carbonation that scrubs the mouth.

Drinkability is deceptive. For while this brew strong, it acts like a session beer in your mouth and throat. The spicing of last years bottle is not here to help you out. This stuff just flows and flows.

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Photo of DeepSix
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a snifter. A low amount head here. An amber color minor carbonation visible.

Sweet malts are dominant, hops are detectable here, spices here too, with some maybe some fruit.

a really balanced taste here. malts and hops pretty nicely balanced. Citrus here too, not much of those spcies and fruit I smelled but eh, I like a hops and malt, and this delivers both, pretty big. Medium mouthfeel with some carbonation noted even on the last 11oz of the bottle. Alcohol bite is noted here too.

A very good an balanced beer here, might be the most drinkable of this style I've had so far. The ABV should avoid too many, but seeing its a limited release thats probably not a huge problem for most.

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Photo of BuffaloTapHugger
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured 22 oz bomber into a pint glass. Light orange in color with some head tension involved that dissipates fairly quick. Smells of sweet sugar with malt, caramel apples come to mind. It is very sweet on the palate and there's a bit of the spice that can be noticed several seconds after consumption. The natural carbonation is minimal and the yeast can almost give you a headache. This beer would go great with dessert or just an after dinner drink. Would recommend to those who favor the Belgian style, this was a great interpretation and definitely well worth seeking out.

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Stone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing
3.98 out of 5 based on 896 ratings.
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