Raven's Eye Imperial Stout
Eel River Brewing Co.

Raven's Eye Imperial StoutRaven's Eye Imperial Stout
Rate It
Beer Geek Stats | Print Shelf Talker
Stout - Russian Imperial
Ranked #841
Ranked #30,847
3.79 | pDev: 12.14%
Eel River Brewing Co.
California, United States
Very Good
Raven's Eye Imperial StoutRaven's Eye Imperial Stout
Reviews: 193 | Ratings: 339 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Brutaltruth
Brutaltruth from Ohio

4.19/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From the 22 oz bottle in a snifter. This rather nice RIS pours a pitch black with a
nice head of brown foam that subsides to a thick ring, thin fine foam layer, and shows
some excellent lacing. Nose of coffee, dark bakers chocolate, subtle dark fruit notes,
light smoke and char, and subtle anise. Flavors hit a fine note of slick and delicious stout lovers
dream with dark lightly sweet bakers chocolate mingling with rich dark coffee touched lightly with
cream and char. Subtle marshmallow and dark fruit notes of plum and currants mingling nicely
with molasses and brulee notes. Excellent mouth feel; full body, slick, coating, and lightly sweet
on the finish without being cloying.

A BIG roasted beast that is worthy with a nicely hidden kick of booze.

Overall, a SOLID brew.


Dec 26, 2017
Photo of Lone_Freighter
Lone_Freighter from Vermont

3.84/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes. Pint glass and snifter. The appearance had a dark brown to black color with a one finger-ed off white foamy head in both glasses, same amount of clingy foamy lacing sticking nicely to the sides of both glasses. The smell had chocolate with espresso and molasses leading to some dark fruits, inviting to say the least. The taste was mainly sweet due to the fact that the malts are taking the lead on this. Super sweet sticky chocolatey aftertaste with a sweet dry finish. On the palate, it sits about a medium on the body with a somewhat soft carbonation to satisfy indulgent taste buds to want to partake in more, just very smooth and velvety - wow - I’m somewhat impressed. Overall, Russian Imperial Stout, yup, pretty good and worthy of coming back to.

Jul 07, 2017
Photo of rodbeermunch
rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.29/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours the standard: black for an imperial stout, brown head, 3/5". Solid retention. Aroma of roast and dark fruit notes.

Taste, bitter, dark fruit, roasted chocolate/black malts. This is very straight forward. In 2017, this no adjunct stout stuff is on the endangered species list. Its a decently hopped, plenty bitter, plenty roasted malt stout. No frills. No off flavors. Shitty format though. Hides the alcohol pretty well for something so strong. Its a well made beer that hits the style guidelines right down the middle.

Feb 21, 2017
Photo of Rogerlb
Rogerlb from California

3.72/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

My bottle is the new one (bought 2/14/2017 (Happy Valentine's day) with a red abstract raven on a black bottle, and red writing.

Pours black but seemingly a little thin into a goblet. Minimal brown head. Aroma is malt, chocolate, not overpowering. Taste is very much more chcolate, malt and tobacco. Roast, grainy, bottom of the coffee cup, but no bitterness to speak of. This isn't very hoppy.

Dark fruit isn't very sweet; I'm not getting the molasses they call out on the label. Like mushy plums in there. It's smooth and servicable; a bit smokey and heavy. Not boozy even at 9% (the 2017 iteration). Kinda middle of the road.

Feb 21, 2017
Photo of snaotheus
snaotheus from Washington

3.94/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle served in a tulip. 2016 vintage.

Pours black with a pretty good sized light brown head, medium carbonation. Smell is a little smokey, a little coffee. Definitely some wood.

Taste is solid -- not a lot of anise, but it's there, some chocolate and coffee, some roast grains. Slow chocolate/nutty finish. Nice, solid stout.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, dry, a little gritty. Overall, this is a very good beer.

Jan 08, 2017
Photo of DoctorZombies
DoctorZombies from Florida

4.42/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Black pour with a little clarity under the cap; tan almost brown foam; decent cap retention and thick lacing. Chocolate and roast malt nose. Bittersweet dark chocolate, roast malt and some stone fruit on the finish. Dry cocoa powder tongue coating; moderate carbonation and medium plus mouthfeel. Excellent roast malt and chocolate linger.

Mar 02, 2016
Photo of pat61
pat61 from Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: Pours deep dark brown under a 1” tan foam collar that lasts 2.5 minutes.

S: Coffee, fruit, dark malts, prune, a little wine, malt aromas medium to medium high, hop aromas medium low, yeast aromas medium.

T: Starts with a coffee chocolate palate with a light tartness, dark fruit, dark malts with a little wine character and alcohol. The balance is between the malt, alcohol and fruit. The malt is medium high, the yeast character medium and the hop character is medium low. No harsh burnt or roast flavors.

F: Very creamy and silky with a medium full body, medium to medium low fine soft carbonation. Moderately warming. Nothing astringent.

O: Almost like drinking a cold, lightly carbonated creamy chocolate coffee with a moderate dark chocolate bitterness.

Nov 19, 2015
Photo of BWood
BWood from California

3.29/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up at Costco today. Decent drinking stout. Nothing toospectacular though. If you are looking for a easily available every day stout this one won't be too bad .But I would take a speedway over it any day.

Aug 15, 2015
Photo of anon
anon from California

3.42/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Pitch black with a small light brown head and light lacing.

Smell has a hefty amount of molasses, dark fruit and alcohol. There is a hint of hops coming through as well. Taste is black licorice and molasses up front, some hop bitterness and dark fruits in the back end; light notes of dark chocolate. Not much espresso as stated on the label. Not bad.

Mouth feel is a little bit lacking, very light bodied. I think this would do good with a bit of aging, the molasses and black licorice taste were a little overwhelming to me and could use little subduing.

Overall not terrible, but nothing special.

Apr 13, 2015
Photo of Mighty_Miguelito
Mighty_Miguelito from Washington

4.66/5  rDev +23%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Very dark with small head. The aroma hints of hops, but the taste is dark and malty. Great feel in the mouth, complex changing aftertaste and lovely warming to more malt rather than hop. Solid stout, should be rated higher in my estimation.

Apr 09, 2015
Photo of brewskifan55
brewskifan55 from Mississippi

4.08/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Sipped in a tulip glass.

A: Raven black with a finger of tan foam on top. Thick lacing.

S: Latte, dark chocolate, anise, leather.

T: Comes on strong with the above-mentioned ingredients. Sweet, robust, smooth and heavenly. Molasses and malts make a regal pair.

M: Medium to heavy with medium carbonation.

O: I really liked this one. I think it should get higher praise. A really solid RIS. Fly high with this tempting Raven.

Mar 31, 2015
Photo of ryannosaurus
ryannosaurus from Arizona

3.85/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber poured to tulip

Pours opaque black with a finger of brown head, settles to a ring of lace,

Fairly faint aroma, a bit of molasses and malt

Flavor has a nice hit of molasses and anise, some roasty malt, dark fruit (prune?) and surprising amount of hoppiness lingering on the tongue (OK, bottle says 52 IBUs, so that shouldn't be a surprise). A bit boozy, and some grassy flavor as it warms..

Mouthfeel is significant, but seems lighter than some in the style

Pretty rare I give an overall rating better than the component ratings, but there ya go... this beer makes a better impression on me than the sum of its parts. A refreshingly different take on one of my fave styles, which reminds me more of some of my own forays brewing the style than any commercial examples. I'd love to try a barrel aged version of this!

Jan 17, 2015
Photo of CrazyDavros
CrazyDavros from Australia

3.52/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours black with a light tan head.
Nose shows roasted malt, caramel, bready malt, liquorice and cocoa.
Flavours include bitter one-dimensional roast, booze, a prominent milk chocolate note and bready malt.
Nice creamy carbonation.
A bit more complexity would be nice for a beer of this strength.

Aug 10, 2014
Photo of Rob23
Rob23 from California

4.01/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I have passed this one up so many times I thought what the hell and bought it.Pours black as my kids moms soul.I dont smell much...maybe some plum and cocoa.First sip is a bit boozy but gives way to the cocoa and othe signiture stout flavors.It seems to have that pop rocks dissolve on the tongue effect that I tend to like.For 7 bucks it aint bad and I would definatly revisit this one if I could not find a Ten Fidy or a Stone in stock...not bad at all.

Jul 06, 2014
Photo of ADZA
ADZA from Australia

3.75/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours the darkest brown hue with a creamy two finger head and lacing everywhere,the smell is molasses,plums and dark mocha,the mouthfeel is full bodied with moderate carbonation and has tastes of dark coffee,chocolate,molasses and finished bittersweetness and overall it's quite nice without being over the top cheers.

Apr 15, 2014
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84 from California

3.87/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, and char aromas. Taste is much the same with sweet cocoa, char, and dark fruit flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roast bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with a great smell and tasty flavors that make this one easy to drink.

Apr 14, 2014
Photo of cherche
cherche from Washington

4.19/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22 oz bottle served into a stemless wineglass

A: dark, dark brown, black in the center of the glass, brown on the edges. big mocha colored cotton head. slight retention.

S: coffee, cacao/chocolate, earthy, sweet booze smell, slight smokiness

T: very similar to smell, smokiness comes out more on back end of taste than in the smell

M: medium mouth feel, nothing out of the ordinary but where i expect a good imperial stout to be

O: very good beer overall - first eel river i have ever tried and i look forward to trying more of their beers...

Mar 29, 2014
Photo of Mightykingmalard
Mightykingmalard from California

4.2/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: pours chocolate brown. Mostly opaque. Head is cappuccino colored.

S: smells a little like licorice.

T: fantastic taste. Hint of black licorice. Extremely smooth. Reminds me of little chocolate licorice bars. Can't remember what they were called...

M: great feel that you want to let sit in your mouth.

O: I enjoyed this beer a lot. Eel river is a brewery I've only recently learned about and everything they do seems to be really good. I love black licorice, so that is part of it. I want to go get another!

Feb 09, 2014
Photo of BastardKing24
BastardKing24 from Oregon

3.97/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got to sample this at Homestead homebrewing in Winston OR so I bought a bottle. It tasted quite good. Served in my snifter.

Pours a dark brown, very dark, but still brown. HUGE billowing mocha head, 2 inches worth, that hangs around forever. This part of the beer they got down well. 4.5

Smell is chocolate and molasses, hint of coffee, and some bitter hop aromas.

Taste is above average with chocolate, coffee, molasses, raisin, and a very nice taste from the yeast they used. Well done solid 4.

Feel is lightly slick and oily, with a nice fine bubbly texture, medium to high carbonation.
Aftertastes of bitter cocoa and hops lasts for a while.

Overall a nice offering that has a nice molasses taste to it, which is unique.

Jan 06, 2014
Photo of HardTarget
HardTarget from Texas

3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

USDA Organic on the cap

Appearance: Black glass shows some light brown edging when back lit. Holds a full finger of tan head.

Smell: Light earthy, leafy hop note, mild milk/lactic acid smell as well. Not a lot here, most of it seems hop driven.

Taste: Slightly sour twang of a stout is on target, lots of roasted barley supported by a sugary malt base that ends up somewhere near balanced. A light rain water taste that I associate with Organic beers, but it melds nicely with what is going on.

Mouthfeel: Heavy body, slightly astringent, dry finish encourages the next sip. Almost chalky.

Overall: A nice beer. No major flaws, a bit dry but nice flavor and obviously made with sufficient malt and hops to be Imperial. A good slow sipper, glad to try it.

Dec 29, 2013
Photo of BeerAficionadoMCMXC
BeerAficionadoMCMXC from California

3.47/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

A- More like an Imperial Porter
S- Dark fruits, raisins, maybe a little chocolate.
T-Raisins, dark fruits,
M- Full bodied and smooth, must have been oats.
O- A good quality beer and certainly drinkable, but I've had better RISs. I'd go with okay on this one.

Nov 30, 2013
Photo of Goblinmunkey7
Goblinmunkey7 from Massachusetts

1.97/5  rDev -48%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appearance: Pours a dark rich brown that looks close to black in the glass. Head is dark tan and creamy. Drops to a small bubbly cap and collar. Moderate carbonation on the pour. Some hints of deep red at the edges when held to direct light.

Smell: Cocoa and a ton of dark fruit. Cherry, fig, plum, and dark berry. Some dark chocolate with a solid punch of roasted malt. Vague hint of herbal and citrus hopping, but it's big and malty. Sharp snap of licorice. Slightly oxidized with some backing alcohol. Relatively standard if a bit big on the dark fruit.

Taste: Mildly roasted with a hint of cocoa. Some dark chocolate buried in there as well. A hint of citrus and herbal hop notes. Pushes dark cherry and various dark berries along with fig and plum. Deeply fruity. A touch of licorice. Oxidation pushes sherry and some phenols. A touch of alcohol heat on the back. Some burnt my edges with a caramelized sweetness. A ton of raisin, a ton.

Mouthfeel: Mediumish body with a moderate carbonation. Clean.

Overall: At this rate, news of winter will never arrive.

A rather unexciting stout. It's a raisin bomb. Missing some darker roasted malts and depth.

Nov 05, 2013
Photo of Smurf2055
Smurf2055 from Washington

4.52/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark with a finger or two of tan head. Big bubbles.

Rich chocolate and coffee flavors. Really powerful smell too. Rich.

Very strong coffee flavor. Creamy. Rich and flavorful. Bit of a bitter finish. Masks the alcohol.

Great beer. Great price and availability, was really glad I got to try it. Super under rated Imperial stout that hangs with the best of them.

Jul 15, 2013
Photo of jgasparine
jgasparine from Maryland

4.06/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured a cola brown with virtually no head; no visible carbonation.

The aroma is a sweet, melanoidin-rich malt bomb. With the eyes closed, I wouldn't guess this was a stout on the aroma alone, due to a lack of roastiness.

The flavor follows the nose appropriately; rich and malty. I have held onto this bottle for about a year, and it has picked up the PERFECT amount of oxidation... which really just adds a soft complexity to the flavor. Any older, and I think we'd be looking at 'wet cardboard'.

The mouthfeel is full and somewhat oily, with just the smallest tickle from some soft carbonation. Some heat comes into play from the ethanol. No astringency whatsoever.

This beer certainly benefits from some limited ageing. I would certainly seek it out again.

Jun 09, 2013
Photo of JordonHoltzman
JordonHoltzman from New York

4.06/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a black rich body with a bubbly tan head that did not last long. Lacing is nice.
Rich dark malts roasted coffee and chocolate aromas.
Roasty taste of coffee and malt.
Mouthfeel is good, with nice carbonation.
Overall a good RIS that isn't over the top.

May 29, 2013
Raven's Eye Imperial Stout from Eel River Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 85 out of 100 with 339 ratings