14th Anniversary Emperial IPA | Stone Brewing

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14th Anniversary Emperial IPA14th Anniversary Emperial IPA
Very Good
779 Ratings
14th Anniversary Emperial IPA14th 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.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 779 |  Reviews: 576
Photo of Mosley1212
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured this into my Dogfish Head snifter.

A-- Pours a yellow, straw-color. It's funny because Arrogant always claims to hate the "yellow, fizzy beers," but his one isn't too deferent from those in color

S-- Some citrus, but mostly pine and floral. The nose is semi-strong, but not as in your face as other Stone brews

T-- As you would expect, it's hoppy as Hell. You do get a light taste of the floral and fruit, but you also get a little water with the taste. That disappoints me. The smell is deceiving and the taste just can't match what your nose tells you will be there.

M-- Bitter. I mean, this beer is for serious hop heads only. Like I said, it's a bit weaker than I would like, but it's a nice overall brew from these guys

D-- What can I say? at 8.9% this beer isn't something you'll sit down with and drink away all day and night. It's strong, but it's deceivingly so. The beer sneaks up on you, but I can't see myself having more than one.

Overall, it's a good beer from these guys, but I don't see it becoming part of the rotation. But I love Stone, and I'm happy with this beer. Thanks, guys.

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Photo of JordonHoltzman
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours a very interesting cloudy yellowy peachy color. white head that isn't that thick but doesn't vanish completely.
a kick-ass citrusy smell from the hops. wow its really pleasant and not over the top.
a very hop heavy taste, yet yeast is in the background too. the alcohol is hidden well.
mouthfeel is decent. more carbonated than preferred.
this is definitely a sipper, but its a fantastic beer.

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Photo of berpwillie
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pours a cloudy golden copper yellow color with average white frothy head, spare lacing, and soft carbonation. smell is fruity and spicy, taste is much the same. spicy bitter fruity (grapefruit) peppery taste. crisp and harsh with a strong bitter finish. light body, long flavor duration, and thin slick texture.

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Photo of ColdPoncho
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From notes, 7-23-2010

A - medium cloudy yellow body, thin white dissipating head

S - strong citrus on the nose, not specifically very hoppy, a light maltiness

T - good creamy malt character, a unique bitterness, sharp flavors, not floral or fruity.

M - full and thick, highly palatable.

O (D) - pretty interesting, good tasting. Overall, quite drinkable.

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Photo of mlazzaro
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Very light golden color, looks a bit light in color for an alcoholic IPA. No head really, only a little just as you pour it. Nice alcohol flavors and aromas, nothing off-putting about its booze content, which is surprising considering how old it is. Very satisfying hoppiness to the beer in bitterness, flavor and aroma.
I assume it is Emperial to explain its British ingrediants and style. Doesn't taste like the IPAs I have had lately.

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Photo of arrogant
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
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 cjgator3
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle

A- Pours a nice golden yellow/orangish color with a large off-white head that possesses excellent lacing and retention qualities.

S- The aroma is pale malts with some earthy and spicy hops. I like the aroma, I isn't going to knock your socks off like most Stone beers but the aroma is very well balanced.

T- The taste like the aroma is solid all the way around. Sweet malts up front, with a good dose of bitterness in the finish. The hops don't provide a tongue scorching bitterness like some of their other IPAs, but it does provide a solid amount of bitterness that provides more flavor than anything. Very nice!

M- The mouthfeel is somewhere between light and medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation.

D- Overall, I came away very impressed with this offering. I think it is a very well-crafted beer that I would love to see as a year round offering someday. Highly recommended!

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Photo of bum732
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

S: Very fruity, more plums and apple blossoms, some citrus, spicy white pepper, resiny.

L: Slightly hazy straw yellow, nice fluffy head, great retention and lacing.

T: Spicy fruity hop forward with just the right amount of sweet malt. Resiny bitterness, spicy, mineral finish. Earthy as well with a very mineraly component, salty almost.

M: Nice full creamy body, enough carbonation to make it pop, complements spiciness nicely.

A solid beer, really enjoyed seeing English hops show this way. Nice liberal use of burton salts here, can really taste the minerals.

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Photo of errantnight
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

It seems pretty clear that if you don't like noble hops you're just not going to dig on this beer. It's an odd duck, no doubt, but aside from it being a new challenge to one's tastebuds I'm not sure I understand the effusive response by some more veteran tasters. It's the equivalent of going to a Korean Taco Truck and then freaking out because the Tacos have Korean Spices instead of Mexican and claiming it's awful and it doesn't work because of it.

This beer looks great. Faintly hazed, brilliant gold, awesome lacing and superb retention following a foamy, nigh excessive head.

On the nose this is herbaceous, floral, and earthy. Maybe even a hint of spice.

On the palate this is intensely bitter all the way through, it starts on the mid-front palate and builds to a closing crescendo of resiny bitterness. This is NOT for the faint of heart. There is actually a reasonable degree of up front sweetness that is carried along the fringe, primarily coming through as a pale caramel or light toffee note. Herbal notes predominate with a floral (almost lavendar) finish (which I suspect is where the "soap-y" reviews are coming from).

This is almost precisely, in body, how I'd like my DIPAs to be. Full and round through the middle, tapering off with a smoothness in the back and snapping off with a brace of bitterness.

I don't love this beer, another bottle or two, or a taste on tap, will be more than enough. But it's the best huge noble hop beer I've had since the 06 (I think that was the year) Imperial Pilsner from Sam Adams. It's unique, exciting, and worth trying.

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Photo of FickleBeast
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a a snifter.

Pours a cloudy orange with two fingers of sticky foam that dissipates slowly and coats the glass. Aroma is a floral hoppiness, with some apple, orange fruit aromas also.

First sip, I get overwhelming orange and grapefruit flavors from the hops. This is a strong lingering bitterness. There is a kiss of sweet, maybe Munich, malts, but the hops really steal the show. Alcohol is well hidden.

Certainly a sipper, but an enjoyable one. Nice job from Stone

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Photo of Haybeerman
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Slightly hazy orange/yellow color. Poured a 3 finger off-white head with excellent retention to a rocky 1 finger cap. Thick lace almost sheets the entire glass.

A: Big floral hops; grapefruit, citrus and pine. Sweet, bready malt in the backgroiund.

T: Big bitter up front followed quicly by sweet, bready malt. A sharp, lingering bitter finish. wWarming alcohol

M: Medium body. Moderate carbonation. Resiny and bitter. Bitter.

D: I like a big bitter. Need a bunch to balance this one. ABV keeps it from being too drinkable in any quantity.

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Photo of badboyrsl84
4.09/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

there was a lot of hype to this one and even though I'm not the hugest fan of IPAs I had to give this one a spin.

The first thing I noticed with this one is the surprising smell I got from it in the bottle. It smelled so much like a strong Belgian brew. It had a peppery sweet smell you'd expect from the Belgian styles brews. After pouring this one in a goblet I got more of the hoppy greatness with small amount of malt. The Belgian smells seemed to disappear but a hint was still lingering.

The pour was a solid golden-yellow with a 1/2 head that lingered around the glass the whole drink. I wasn't exactly impressed with the the look but the taste made up for it. LOTS OF HOPS!!! I'm not usually a big fan of hops but this one is really wells balanced. the hops hit hard & fast and ends with a small malty peppery goodness. I had a hard time getting rid of the hoppy taste in my mouth. the lasting hoppy taste blew me away. this beer has a long lasting after taste.


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Photo of AndyAvalanche
4.09/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle split and poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint Glass. Comes out a hazy yellow/orange/light brown color, when held up to the light it's slightly more orange glow appears. An aggressive pour gives a thick white head, it produces some very good lacing to it. Overall not a bad look, but really looks more like a Belgian pale or a hefeweizen than a double IPA.

Smell is the best feature in my opinion. Extremely hoppy for something that's trying to pass itself off as an English style, but it's one of the things that makes Stone awesome. Citrus, floral, and some sweet pine hops completely dominate each sniff. There are some sweetness features in the smell as well, like honey glazed pale malts, very good overall.

Taste is a slight step down from the smell, but still very good. Much like the smell, the hops are still the more dominate feature in the flavor. Citrus and a sweet piney flavor combine together with some slight toasted malt. There is almost a honey flavor, but far more bitter than sweet.

Mouthfeel and texture is good, medium bodied and complex with a very clean bitter/zesty finish. Very drinkable, good all year round in my opinion.

Certainly not a traditional English IPA (or English DIPA), but I love how Stone does stuff like this. Thank you Stone for another good Anniversary beer!

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Photo of Mosstrooper
4.09/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle into an imperial nonic pint glass.

Appearance: Slightly hazy golden color with a large, creamy white head that dissipates slowly and leaves behind large, thick spots of lace.

Smell: Buttery malt with grapefruit and other citrus/fruit, but there's also a strong soapy aroma that takes a lot away.

Taste: Begins piney and spicy and remains so throughout. The middle shows some buttery malt character, but the finish is very pleasantly hoppy with a lot of herbal character- despite the intense hop profile, this beer is not a palate-destroyer but will leave you with hop-breath for a long time.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with natural carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: A very good brew that masks its alcohol content well. This is an IPA I would love having for special occasions.

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Photo of Parrotbeak
4.09/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy golden color, with an eighth-inch white head that fades slowly. Decent lacing.
Smell is bready malts and strong, fruity, grassy hops. Strong notes of pineapple, as well as some pickled mango and melon.
Taste is heavy, breaded malts, as well as more fruity, grassy hops. Heavy citrus notes, as well as some pineapple, mango, lemon peel, and melon. Stong, bitter rush near the finish. Finish is malty and hoppy, with the bitterness carrying through and lingering.
Mouthfeel is smooth up front, with the hops coming in to give it some bite halfway through. Finish is crisp. Medium body.
Drinkability is good. Very good, quite bitter IPA.

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Photo of spartanfan
4.09/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bomber into a nondescript goblet.

A: Pours a very hazy golden straw color. Nice fluffy white head that slowly fades to a thin layer leaving spotty lacing behind.

S: Aromas are overpoweringly of hops, but it's almost a sweet hoppy smell. Odors of pineapple, tangerines are prevelant. I've never smelled an IPA like this one, and I'm really digging it.

T: I would have loved to have tried this fresh, but as it is it tastes past its prime. Hops are present, but badly faded.

M: Mouthfeel is medium with good carbonation. Just about perfect.

D: Quite drinkable considering the ABV.

As I said, I feel this beer is past its prime, but I don't know how it was kept so I can't say if it might age well under better conditions.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a nonic)
This beer has a slight hazy orange body with a thick creamy dense head that last a good spot. There is a sea of slow tiny bubbles that work their way to the surface.
S- The aroma of earthy woody green hops is full and dark with a weedy herbal note that finishes with a grassy note. There is a light green flowery quality to the hops that is very green.
T- The dark pungent hops have a mild pepper note to it and not really bitter but more mellow but still very green. There is a slight pale malt note in the dry finish. The musty quality to the hops linger with a dark mellow bitterness in the finish.
M- The beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with a soft carbonic acid bite and no alcohol heat.
D- This beer has big dark hops but they are mellow and not as sharp as American hops yet still has a bright pungent quality. This is a nice twist to the IPA with a good hop depth and the malt support is soft but not buried. This is a big beer but an easy sipper.

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Photo of hoppyhampy
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bottle poured into a tulip. No freshness info. Kind of odd seeing how they recommend you drink it fresh. Nice, frothy two inches of head forms over a cloudy yellow liquid that reminds me of watered down orange juice. Good lacing evident as the head slowly dissipates. Smell is surprisingly sweet. This is a bit of a change for Stone. The malt is up front and the hops form the back bone giving it a very floral quality almost like a triple. The amount of carbonation you can see looks kind of like a triple, too. The hops are there and still seem fresh. It's not like the beer is old and the malt has taken over, its just the hops are very subdued on the nose. Good amount of carbonation (not too much) and a very resiny mouthfeel. This definitely coats your whole mouth with a hefty dose of IBUs. Still the hops don't quite dominate the taste. The yeast and malt combine with the hops to give the beer a citrus-y, tangy, baked, spicy quality. I guess I would say its like biting into a piece of orange peel in your orange-cranberry scone. Maybe its because I am enjoying something entirely new but I think this beer is remarkably drinkable for 8.9% abv. Again I would compare it to a triple instead of most DIPAs in that regard. I wish I had a nice cigar to go with this. Overall, unique and impressive. I am glad my favorite brewer can still surprise me after all these years.

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Photo of EricCioe
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

It pours a burnt sunset orange with a pretty one finger head that dissipates into a thick ring with an island of froth, with plenty of lacing. A pretty beer. The nose is a fresh pine forest after a rain, an assertive but not overpowering hop presence, really pleasant. On the tongue the fresh pine notes hit up front with a little hint of a sweet fresh fruit at the back. In the mouth it's a bit too carbonated for my preferences, but the feel is very good other than that. I could drink this one often. Very happy to have picked this out on a whim to go with a bleu cheese steak. A great beer.

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Photo of BrewCrew2010
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a cloudy orange body with a fast receding white head that leaves some light lacing.

S: A nice hoppy aroma balanced with some pale malts, tropical fruit, and spices.

T: For some reason, I felt like I am drinking hoppy orange juice. Lots of bitter citrus hops in the flavor balanced with some sweet malts. Also getting some grapefruit and spices. Finishes slightly boozy and dry.

M: Creamy texture; appropriate carbonation; medium body.

O: I enjoyed this beer a lot. Really refreshing, but nothing too interesting. Although very balanced, this isn't one of those "complex" DIPAs. Glad I tried it, but wouldn't go out of my way to get more... not that I could because it's a limited brew.

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Photo of soulgrowl
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Smoggy orange-canary, with a wispy white cap. Though its ingredients are all English, it could hardly smell more American even if it had a fresh Cascade hop cone floating in it. Huge pine, lemon, coriander and lemongrass aromas with a background of sponge cake, curaçao, and coconut rum. Fruity and tropical but not tropical fruity, if that makes sense.

The hop blast in the aroma sadly doesn't translate to the flavor, though I suspect that's due to the cask conditioning. This leaves it full of flavor but also quite sweet, and reminiscent of an Old Ale or blonde barleywine. Golden raisins, frosted flakes, caramel and honey take the edge off juniper, citrus, and pine hop flavors and virtually undetectable alcohol - like an assassin's bullet of hops shot through a silencer of malts. Smooth and dangerously drinkable, and a potential partner for strong cheese.

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Photo of abrand
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle poured into a pint glass. Bottled in June 2010.

The 14th Anniversary IPA pours a cloudy orange color. Fluffy 2 finger off-white head and lots of lacing on the glass. No visible sediment but a lot of haze in the pour. Aroma is full of hops and citrus fruits. Some floral notes as well as bread dough. Taste is predominately hops. The 100 IBUs are very noticeable. I wonder how this would mellow out in the cellar and let some of the other flavors pop out. Some sweetness is noticeable up from the grapefruit and nectarines. Mouthfeel is dry and medium bodied. This is a pretty drinkable beer. The taste is spot on, but the dry finish may hurt the flavor profile somewhat.

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Photo of Daniellobo
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rich take on an imperialized IPA with long and profound bitterness, assertive but complex enough to hold its ground very well.

Presentation: 22 oz brown capped bomber. Screen-printed label with a design of the gargoyle raising the glass for Stone's 14th anniversary. Lengthy back narrative that surprisingly for Stone is quite informative and not tongue in cheek, with history, intent, brewing and ingredients overview. Notes bottling date (June 2010) with and indication to consume fresh or age in a boat for year or more. Shows Alc. by Vol. (8.9%) Served in a tulip glass.

A - Hazy deep gold pour, with a generous frothy head, good retention, and some touches of lacing.

S - Hoppy salute with earthy and light spicy touches. Clean and enticing.

T - The hoppy salute is retained with that earthy and spicy range. The description on the bottle has it quite right, there is a minimal malty touch that gives space to a long and complex bitter finish. Pungent in a rich way.

M - Medium body with medium-low carbonation and a bitter and crisp journey to the finish.

D - The long bitterness works surprisingly well, and offers quite the complex range. Very pleasing in that context.

Notes: Nice anniversary offering from Stone. If one is curios about an stimulating bitter range, this sure is worth the try. Here´s to another 14 years!

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Photo of jeffthecheff
4.11/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly hazy, bronze color with a lively carbonation that produces a big, fluffy white head. Excellent lacing and retention lasts the whole glass.

The aroma has a strong, English hop presence with leafy, earthy and herbal notes. Very little fruitiness contributed from the hops, keeping a dark tone. The malt provides a firm, rich base to the nose that accentuates some fruity yeast and alcohol warmth.

I thought the bitterness was overbearing at first, but as it warms and my tongue gets used to it, the extreme bitterness grows on me. The malt flavor comes mostly from a high amount of English-tasting base malt, which brings a bright sweetness to play off the dark, earthy, bitter flavor from the hops. On the finish, there is a slightly fruity hop flavor that wasn't found in the nose.

The mouthfeel is a standout for this beer. It's firm, tight, and smooth through the middle, and dry in the finish. It compliments the flavor of the beer nicely. This was a nice beer, and another worthy purchase from Stone.

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Photo of arizcards
4.11/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Finally tracked down a bomber from BevMo today for $5.99.

Beer poured an golden orange with a nice fluffy white head that is long lasting - 4.5.
Nose is bready malts with hints of citrus hops - 3.5.
Taste buds were initially met by those bready malts well balanced by lemon zest hop. Pepper lingers in the background - 4.5.
Mouthfeel is good, medium bodied and pretty darn smooth - 4.0.
Drinkability is good. Alcohol was felt on the initial sip but it is not noticeable after.
This is a well balanced brew, the recipe is very good. I like the ramped up English ingredients - I am sure our friends in the UK would love to sample this! Glad to have tried!

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14th Anniversary Emperial IPA from Stone Brewing
Beer rating: 3.86 out of 5 with 779 ratings