Stone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic Ale | Stone Brewing

Stone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic AleStone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic Ale
BA SCORE
3.96/5
898 Ratings
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
Ranking:
-
Reviews:
498
Ratings:
898
pDev:
10.35%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
44
Gots:
255
Trade:
13
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 898 |  Reviews: 498
Photo of Mebuzzard
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rich golden brew, clear, with a billowing white head at first, then settled to a small film. A quick swirl brings it around again, modestly.
Phenolic/clove in the aroma, with some esters and lemongrass. Not overly fruity, just enough though. Some hints of sugary malt and cedar (?)

A good taste. Seems like a Belgian-yeasted-up pilsner. Estery, some noticeable malt backbone, a bit sweet, yet has the hops to kick in at the end. Good carbonation. Not sure how this would age. What would be affected the most?

Good abv cover, easy drinking..perhaps a touch syrupy. Nice spring beer. The other two will age...

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Photo of stevoj
4.07/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

On tap at PreFunk. From first sniff, this an excellent Belgian. Big herbal, yeasty bouquet, follows with snappy, spicy taste. Silky golden body brings the whole thing together. Awesome!I

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Photo of Erik-P
3.77/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of afsdan
4/5  rDev +1%

Photo of brandoman63
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%

Photo of LoveStout
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%

Photo of WesWes
4.42/5  rDev +11.6%
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 DoubleJ
4.27/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Going onto the second sample of the Vertical Epic flight at Tustin Brewing. A little over four years of age on this one. On to the beer:

Golden colored brew, topped with some fair lace and a patchy head. What makes the nose distinct is the dryness. It's not oxidized, smells Belgian, and rustic. Some sugar, bigger notes of leather, a few dry hops; any chance this is a Belgian IPA?

Confirmed. Despite four years of hiding, there still remain noticable traces of hops. Delecate hops which compliment the character of the overall beer, not smuther it. Leather, dry Belgian yeast, rustic. The alcohol is hidden well, and its body is smooth. Pleasantly dry in the aftertaste.

There's something about 08.08.08. I won't know how a fresh one tastes, but I know that an aged one is damn good. And I'm lucky to realize that I saved a bottle in my cellar and not realized it.

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Photo of StoutSnob40
3.76/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Georgiabeer
4.2/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at the Brick Store Pub. Pours a nice golden with a fairly short head but nice lacing. The smell is fairly light but with some nice earthy and citrusy hops. Tastes big and piney with some cream and citrus, especially on the finish. Creamy and smooth in the mouth, with a bit of prickliness at the end. Overall it's pretty nice, I particularly like the orange and cream finish- makes it taste a little like a hoppy creamsicle!

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Photo of BillRoth
3.75/5  rDev -5.3%

Photo of sd123
4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Stinkypuss
4.6/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A. Bomber split with friend into a pint glass. Fluffy head soapy white. Wonderful cathedral like lacing.

S. Bready and fruity. Hints of banana.

T. Hints of hops. Peppery. Light fruits appear and then recede into some malty notes. This is a very complex beer.

M. Light and crisp. Finishes on the dry side.

D. Highly quaffable, but this is meant for sipping. If it were more readily available, this would be a mainstay.

Final word: This is an amazing beer. Stone is a world class brewery. I need to secure some more to set aside for a while.

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Photo of Karibourgeois
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of clayrock81
3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(please bear in mind that this review is for a beer that is almost seven years old and was stored in a bar's back fridge)
Poured a cloudy orange body with good head and left a lace ring down the glass. The aroma really lets out yeast as well as honey, some tropical fruits and basically a candi sugar and/or malt based sweetness that a little kid would love as well as some flowery, spicy esters. Medium bodied, fluffy thickness thanks to yeast, and quite frankly this beer is not necessarily mead but it is much more honey, fruity, flowery sweet and thick than a balanced IPA b/c the hops are minimal at best. Finishes spicy and crisp and I really enjoyed this beer after so long and I like sweet beers with little hops but not everyone does, nor would I consider this an IPA now, more of a Belgian Pale or something in that vein. Still, I don't regret buying a bottle.

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Photo of jzeilinger
4.1/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is being pored from their 20th Anniversary Encore Series, bottled on 8/27/15.

A - Pours a dark gold color with generous amounts of carbonation and minimal lacing.

S - Yeasty aroma, some funk, cloves, bananas, and some citrus buried in there.

T - The citrus really comes through on the palate with some peppery character (more so than the nose), banana, clove, somewhat yeasty. Coats the mouth with yeast, cloves, and peppery citrus.

M - Heavy medium body to full bodied, slippery, a little sticky on the lips, and the alcohol pokes through a little bit but more noticeable at the beginning.

O - Glad Stone brought this one back because last time I cellared the bottle too long, pretty happy to re-visit this beer and know how it should taste fresh.

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Photo of enelson
4/5  rDev +1%

Photo of mrn1ceguy
3.5/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of BARFLYB
3.62/5  rDev -8.6%
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 John_M
4.37/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours a rich yellow gold color with good head retention and lacing. The beer looks for all the world like a Belgian trippel, which, as I found out, it would mimick in other ways as well.

On the nose this beer is very impressive. I get some cherry and honey, but with huge underlying hoppy bitterness, coupled with white and black pepper. The flavors on the palate replicate the nose, and for all the world this beer reminds me of the Houblon IPA from La Chouffe. It's actually a bit richer and hoppier then the Houblon, but is also a bit less complex and lacks some of the lemon/lime. The beer is moderately sweet, but that sweetness is more then countered by the massive amount of hops in this beer. The beer is medium bodied and finishes fairly well. Abv. is pretty well disguised, though it had a warming effect near the end of the glass. Probably couldn't drink a whole lot of this stuff, but the single glass was quite good. Another impressive offering from Stone.

Edit from 3/15/13. Based on a recent vertical epic tasting at Pacific Coast Brewing. While this beer still shows some attractive cherry, orange, honey and light vanilla flavor, the flavor profile has clearly lightened up considerably since 2008. This beer is till quite charming and drinkable, but it has nothing like the hoppy bitterness and intensity of flavor it had several years ago. My current scoring of this beer was considerably below what I gave it back in 2008.

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Photo of Zorro
4.25/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful clear golden colored ale. Tinges of amber I could almost call this peach color. Small white head forms and falls.

Quite a strong and pleasant smelling ale, I smell it quite strongly two feet away from my nose. Strong and sweet candy aroma and fruity and spicy esters dominate the aroma. Quite spicy and herbal this is one beer where the yeast esters hide whatever coriander was used in the recipe. Herbal but without any separate identities except licorice and mint.

Taste starts out mildly sweet and herbal with a sweet aftertaste. Herbal and spicy with the accent on the word herbal. Quite strong bitter for the style. Best I can ID the flavors here is J├Ągermeister and mint.

Mouthfeel is quite nice.

No Idea how well this will age, for me it is quite nice right now. Very Spicy and herbal example of the beer style and one I like quite a bit.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.52/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sampled August 2008
Pours into my 25cl tulip glass with a frothy, initially three-finger thick, pale, off-white colored head. The beer is a brilliantly clear, copper hue as it sits in my glass but shows a brilliant, bright gold color when held up to the light. The aroma has an expressively fruity, sort of children's aspirin like aroma to it that is magnified by a substantial sweetness. Weird is all I can really say, and not necessarily bad. Other aromas of juicy fruit gum, grassy grain, clean tropical fruit, ripe peach, just a hint of an herbal note, some phenolic clove. I think it is that there is a slight medicinal note in the aroma along with the clove phenolics and these, combined with how incredibly clean the hop character is (is it filtering that made the fruity hop aromas so clean?) is what gives this a children' aspirin aroma.

Tastes like bubble gum with the juicy, fruity hop notes and a clean, almost cotton candy like sweetness. This is actually surprisingly sweet tasting given the terminal gravity; I think that the fruity hop flavors tend to accentuate what sweetness is here and the fact that the fermentation profile is so clean means that the noticed alcohol note also seems to contribute to the perceived sweetness. Some phenolics and a spiciness contribute a touch of spiciness towards the finish that seems a bit turpene like and definitely has an expressive clove flavor to it. The hops contribute flavors of tropical fruit, lychee, ripe peach, and when combined with the perceived sweetness, some notes of honey-suckle are evident. While the hop character is quite dominant, there is, especially as this beer warms, a significant phenolic character to this beer, especially in the finish.

Despite being perceived as sweet this does have a nice, light body for a beer of this strength; I wouldn't call it a quaffing brew, but it does have a nice drinkability to it. It could use a bit more carbonation as I typically like my strong Golden Belgian'ish beers to be lively, though the lightish carbonation here really doesn't detract too much.

This is somehow incredibly clean, despite the noticeable fermentation character and hop notes; the malt seems almost naked somehow as it is lacking that chewy, grain note that I like to find in a good, pale, Belgian ale. This is still a good beer, it just seems to be a bit too filtered (even if it wasn't caused by the actual filtering process). I do like how this beer works as a whole, the entire experience is a bit more than a sum of its parts.

Purchased: Plaza Liquors, Tucson AZ

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.45/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 picked up at the Coop today for about $6.75... poured into my New Belgium snifter... looks pretty already.

Big 2 finger foamy meringue like head... 1st pour is crystal clear gold... looks like a pilsner actually. very nice ribbons of lace.

The aroma has a really fruity quality along with some pine... I swear their have to be amarillos in there... they always remind me of Flintstone Vitamins.

Flavor is bananas and pink bubblegum.. very fruity.. not as much pine and citrus as expected... actually fairly balanced IMHO. Dry finish.. tropical fruit as it warms.. very very nice. I would seriously hesitate to call this a BSPA.. Right now, it is a Belgian IPA.. that said, I don't know how well these hops are going to be so bright.. but I am really liking this.

4.5/4.5/4.5/4/4.5

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Photo of epyon396
3.93/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of rudzud
3.56/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed in a 07-12very vertical.

A - Poured a hazy orange hue with a half finger head that faded to leave a thin blanket.

S - Aromas of bready malts and faint Belgian fruits/esters..

T - Taste is a malt bomb with light fruits and esters. Kinda to be expected due to the age. Malts and faint esters....ehh.

M - Mouthfeel is lightly carbonated , not too shabby.

O - Overall not a bad beer just well past its prime. Solid but old.

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Stone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic Ale from Stone Brewing
Beer rating: 3.96 out of 5 with 898 ratings
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