Stone 14th Anniversary Emperial IPA | Stone Brewing

very good
576 Reviews
Stone 14th Anniversary Emperial IPAStone 14th Anniversary Emperial IPA

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.90%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by jeffthecheff on 06-19-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 576 | Ratings: 773
Photo of RichScherle
4.9/5  rDev +27.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Exceptional on all fronts.

Appearance - Beautiful gold/pale with lots of floaties. Wonderful dense and frothy head.

Nose - deliciously hoppy nose! As soon as i popped the cap you could smell the citrusy hops. Mind blowingly intense nose.

Taste - Fascinating! Very bright and fresh malty notes combine with an aggressive tropical hop profile. Some tropical fruit notes - possibly pineapple with some passion fruit? The brightness of this beer is wonderful. Really glides across the palette and sparks the wonder factor hugely. Malty notes are sparkly and refreshing with a bitter finish that is very refined and appreciated.

mouthfeel - exceptional. perfect mouthfeel - bright and hoppy with a fullbodied but not cloying in any way.

drinkability - excellent. potent brew though.

conclusion: one of the most exceptional IPAs i've had the pleasure of drinking. Absolutely spot on for the style and my favorite of all the stone brews. Three thumbs up!

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Photo of pmsawyer
3.43/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

As an English IPA it misses the style; it is an Imperial IPA . The ingredients were English, except the treated water, but the style is Imperial as implied in the spelling Emperial which implies something different has been done.

Aroma - Hops with no detectable malt

Appearance - gold with orange tint. Little to no head.

Flavor - aroma did not mis-lead all hops. Very little malt tasted. Long aftertaste of hops a little harsh and bitter.

Texture - light body but astringent.

Overall a strong hop tonic. Never sure what "drinkability" means (Bud Light?) but one was enough.

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Photo of kgrober
4.32/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'll apologize in advance for this thin review, but this was the final beer I had at a Stone tasting and while I remember citrus notes, particularly grapefruit and lemon, the hops were the star of this you might imagine.

In a word, it was a MF'er. Huge nose, Huge taste, and Huge (but not overpowering) alcohol. Finished dry...almost tart.

I don't know if I could many of these, but I sure enjoyed what I had.

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Photo of TheHungryHiker
3.73/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Glass: Chimay beer glass
A= Poured a bright, cloudy orange. One finger of light, tan head.

S= Somewhat malty. A touch of pine.

T= Malt sweetness giving way to a bitter hop finish. Some floral and pepper notes.

M= Smooth and sweet, with a dry hoppy finish.

D= An easy drinking IPA. As their 14th anniversary IPA, I was anticipating a big flavored, complex beer, but was left with a drinkable, but not exceptional IPA.

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Photo of Foxxypants
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Stone has been, for me, one of those breweries that I have to be in the mood to have a beer from. I received my Emperial from my brother (liquor store manager) for my birthday. While I was very happy to get one because of what it is, I was iffy simply because I'm not a huge hophead. I've had a lot of IPA's that I do love, but I know how Stone likes take their brews to the extremes. But, I got in one of my Stone moods, so I cracked it open and poured the first half into a glass.

A: First thing I noticed was how brightly colored it was. It's the the most vibrant yellow/orange beer I've ever seen. Head was pretty standard for an IPA, quick to recede.

S: Strong hop smell as expected, but incredibly strong citrus aromas to accompany. It smelled liked its color: vibrant.

T: Huge rush of hops, bitter enough to kick your tongue back, but then fades into bright citrus flavors to match the color and smell. Very interesting to let sit on your tongue and analyze. Finished with bitterness comparable to most strong IPA's, and that unique Stone aftertaste (I'm sure some of you know what I mean)

M: Dries you right out, lots of carbonation. Not bad to start, but I personally don't like the finish.

D: I don't think I'd pick this up again, simply due to my personal tastes. Overall: harsh hitting, but one of the better IPA's I've had, and uniquely Stone. Perhaps I'm just not worthy for this one.

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Photo of Stretch270
4.47/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served from growler into tapered Stone glass

Appearance - a very clouded light amber color with a bubbly thick cream colored head.

Smell - certainly the hops come across in the smell both in the nostrils and the back of the throat.

Taste - fir fans of imperial IPA I think this will be an enjoyable beer to try. What you ask for when it comes to imperial is hops and Stone never fails to impress. It combines nicely with a fruitiness, almost apricot like that gives the beer a nice balance of flavor as opposed to pure bitterness.

Mouthfeel - what I really enjoy about this beer is that the carbonation doesn't weigh too much on the tongue. It allows you to focus on the flavor. That is not to say there isn't carbonation because there is, but that the carbonation doesnt mask the wonderful hoppsy flavor.

Overall - stone IPA's hold a special place in my heart, and the 14th anniversary dies a fantastic job at defining an emperial IPA. That said, it is not doing anything to redefine, which is what i imagine 5's are reserved for. Regardless, it reminds me of the Stone tours hops room and just brings a smile to my face.

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Photo of vertigelt1
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Looks like I'm first to review it on tap! Served up at The Daily Pint in Santa Monica.

A: poured much oranger than I'd expected. A light, bright orange with a finger of white creamy head that disipated quickly and left little lacing.

S: I smell a little bit of the pine others mention, but not much grass. Some tangerine and grapefruit. Light malt.

T: strong grapefruit bitterness, very little of the pine I smelled. Not a lot of complexity, just strong bitter hops. Malts? We don't need no stinking malts! Slightly medicinal finish. Not entirely unpleasant but very strong; finish lingers and lingers.

M: medium body, slightly thin for the boldness of the taste. Carbonation balances that thinness to a pleasant, well Dundee mouthfeel anyways.

D: I'll be honest. I don't need another one. I'm fine with assertive beers, but this one felt a little one-dimensional, and infind that overpowering. My palet is amped up but is ready for... Something else.

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Photo of PCmofo
3.61/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

After pouring this beer I wasnt very excited about drinking it. It had a cloudy yellow/orange color to it almost like a wheat beer. It did have a pleasant, citrus aroma. The bitterness of the Imperial style was apparent on the first sip and almost overwhelming.

The beer was not very carbonated yet had a thick mouthfeel. The citrus, almost lemony bitterness had a slightly sweet after taste.

The citrus flavors were a refreshing change for an Imperial and overall a fun beer to try.

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Photo of beorn7676
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a bright golden straw color with a bubbly pure white head. Looks very pleasing. Almost crystal clear. Aroma is piny, citrus, with a touch of yeast. Theirs a earthiness to the nose. Taste is pine, citrus, juniper,and lots of bitterness. Touch of malt sweetness, but it is minimal. Body is a little on the light side, but very refreshing for 8.9 abv.

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Photo of OldeGolde
3.2/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Hazy and murky with a golden yellow color, poured with a rich head. Smell- complex. At 100 IBU I have to say this is too bitter for my taste, but there is a richness there that everyone must step up and recognize. Wouldn't go back for this one, I much prefer the Ruination. However, that night I dreamed that I was drinking this and the hops were so strong that it made me sneeze. Points for puncturing my subconscious.

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Photo of bifrojm
1.98/5  rDev -48.6%
look: 4 | smell: 1 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 1.5

Pours a beautiful rich hazy gold with a solid head.

Aroma is... what the eff is that? Dirty dishwater? Moldy lemons? Stinky cheese? There's some good things in there somewhere but they are masked by the moldy smell.

Taste, not much better, though it grows on you a bit. The first half a beer was actually kind of hard to take down. Eased up a tad over time, but only a tad. The moldy taste overpowers anything pleasant. The only thing nice I can really say about the flavor is it isn't as bad as the smell.

I hate to do this because I love Stone, but this doesn't live up to their reputation.

P.S. Warmed up a little better, but I still don't want to drink it.

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Photo of DaveWhite
3.83/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

It poured a hazy gold with a thin head. The first sip is very smooth, almost sweet, with a hint of... apricot maybe. Very bitter on the back of the tongue as it goes down. A good bottle to try, not sure I'd buy another. I prefer their PALE ALE and regular IPA to this Emprerical, feel like they might be trying to do too much. A good, but not great, beer.

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Photo of ghwolf
4.7/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from an over-sized bottle, this IPA was middle golden in color with a noticeable beer head, light yellow in appearance. The aroma, dominated by hops, had slight fruity subtlety. The flavor was a full-bodied characterized by strong notes of hops and some latent alcohol, owing to its high 8.9ABV. The taste remained consistent throughout the experience. The beer has a smooth feeling on the palette.
Because of the size of the bottle (22. oz), there may be a tendency for the beer to get warmer; however the taste is not compromised. If anything, the hops taste is more pronounced.

The high ABV may mean that it's best to drink just one in order to enjoy fully the complexities of the flavors.

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Photo of Brillig
4.97/5  rDev +29.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

As far as this taster's taste buds are concerned, this beer nails the double/imperial IPA.

Great hop flavor, tangy grapefruit mixed with other wonderful hops flavors, laid on strong, with a bit of a malt base. Balance? Who wants balance? The malt is launching pad, keeping strong enough for the hops to rocket off into delightful dominance.

I grab this whenever I get a chance. Another victory for Stone and a special anniversary offering.

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Photo of pinkwheels
4.27/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up two bottles of the 14th anniversary from the brewery store in San Diego to take home with me. Color is a bright golden color; not a ton of head. Flavor is initially sweet and crisp with some nice hoppyness. It reminds a lot of Oskar Blues Gubna.

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Photo of JustinA1
4.52/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Gorgeous wheat gold color, Ivory white lacing. I'd look more but the aroma is everywhere.

S - This beer is all about the smell. Once the bottle is opened: Candy. It's everywhere. Floral, Light, Sugary, like a sweet scented candle or incense. It's nothing like any Stone beer you've had before, yet it still retains that bright hoppy characteristic of a solid IPA.

T - Good, dominated by spicy/peppery hops for sure, but with hints of sweet caramel deep within. The taste parallels the aroma, a feature so often missing in a good IPA.

M - Couldn't ask for more, light yet smooth body. Perfect condition, slightly more bubbly than one expects for an IPA but it works.

D - More, please. I hope, I beg, Stone's exercise in the 'Emperial' is a sign of more to come and not just that: an exercise. This beer shows refinement, care, and class. Rock on.

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Photo of dubc19382
3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I have always been a fan of Stone Brewery and their IPAs and Pale Ales.

Initial taste took a moment to get used to. Not as much of a bite, like a Sculpin IPA, but very mellow full bodied beer. Like other reviews, gets better with every sip. Nice aroma, and I do like the difference in taste to other speciality or imperial IPAs. Not disappointed to say the least! It would be a great night a at a bar with this on tap!

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Photo of AleMonger69
4.6/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served it from a 750 ML bomber into my St. Bernardus glass. This brew was especially delicious and on the back it says they used all English ingredients except for their Colorado spring water. It's appearance was a very hazy dark orange but if you hold it up to the light you can see many little floaty yeasts and the color changed to a peach like glowy orange. Smell was extremely hoppy with hints of citrus and tropical fruits.

Taste is about the same as the smell and not as much of a bitter after taste as you would expect from such a hoppy brew. Lots of hoppy and citrus flavors. Mouthfeel was a good medium body I'd say. Drinkability is very good as it's not as bitter as many imperial IPA's out there and is easy to identify the different flavors. Would buy this again and definitely worth a try for anyone who hasn't had it yet.

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Photo of pancho27
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just picked up a bottle of this beer for the first time and a new place I checked Mission Hills liquor and deli. I enjoyed it very typical of a Stone in my opinion. This is the 1st time I am reviewing so just trying get into it. It is a little more cloudy in appearance than I expected, has a piny taste, with a long aftertaste. For the most part a very enjoyable beer...

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Photo of arrogant
4.07/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into my fuller's pint glass and enjoying outside with wifey drinking her hef.

A - cloudy golden yellow. Could be taken for a weisen

S - strong hops smell. Earthy

T - started with a quick orange citrus, but then overpowering hops. More of a bitter aftertaste than other stone ipa's

M - the biggest drawback to this beer. Too foamy

D - get it again, but would probably only one more

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Photo of cdeem
3.67/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Stone has always been producing amazing IPA's! This one however has been different from them all! The standard west coast hoppy flavor can be found in most of their IPA's, but this one was very different which makes it a new favorite! 10th anniversary IPA from them is still my favorite ,but the 14th is surprising in all categories! Buy one or two to try and buy 2 more to cellar and save for a special occasion!

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Photo of goofyfootrr
4.4/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Serving: Bottle

Appearance: 1/8" head, yellow and cloudy.

Smell: Hints of fruit. Either lemon or grapefruit stood out.

Taste: Very good but it tasted like Dogfish Head 60 min. I was expecting a bit more because of the description and inspiration on the back of the bottle. Nevertheless is continues in the Stone Brewery fashion of excellence.

Mouthfull: Medium with a smooth finish.

Drinkability: Very good. Above 8% this beer could be dangerous. It hides the alcohol very well. Enjoy.

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Photo of Deathtomacro
4.84/5  rDev +25.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a straw color. Lighter than most pale ales I've had/brewed.
The smell was all over the board with sweet caramel, grass, coconut, passion fruit, mango and many different citrus qualities. The taste was very much the same but with a quick cut to bitterness and a subtle sourness. (it works well) Mouth feel is medium thickness. Not too heavy. Not too light. Just about perfect IMO.

Dangerously drinkable. By far the best English IPA that I've had. (if you can really call it that)

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Photo of onesoul
4.27/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I heard Stone was releasing a new addition so naturally, I had to try. Bought from a local market which specializes in hard-to-find craft beers.

First off, the hop aroma is overwhelming, which is to be expected from Stone. It's familiar territory, but wait!....what's this? A very complex yeast taste, not at all similar to other Stone offerings.

Color is golden. Head is immense. Taste changes as the beer warms. Citrusy, piney, sweet malty but then there's the almost indescribable earthy undertones which come [presumably] from the inclusion of a "rare English yeast" (as noted on the bottle - those Stone folks are always so kind to include a brief summery of characteristics of said beer).

Very complex and interesting. And I'll be honest--you can tell from the get-go the alcohol content is high. Though the malt is detectable from the first sip, this beer is sharp, bitter, and not candy-smooth. But nonetheless it is balanced. Definitely not to be wasted on a beer-community newbie who previously enjoyed "cocktails". This is beer as it was meant to be.

If you like bite in your beer and you appreciate complex hops, this brew's for you!

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Photo of tmalone510
4.47/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I really liked this IPA. I typically prefer a lighter IPA with aggressive, but not over the top, hop flavor and aroma. I prefer color on the lighter side which yields a more drinkable and refreshing taste in my opinion. The Target hops are a clear standout and in my opinion make the beer. This is a true success.

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Stone 14th Anniversary Emperial IPA from Stone Brewing
3.85 out of 5 based on 773 ratings.
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