Marshal Zhukov's Imperial Stout | Cigar City Brewing

Marshal Zhukov's Imperial StoutMarshal Zhukov's Imperial Stout
BA SCORE
4.37/5
2,769 Ratings
Marshal Zhukov's Imperial StoutMarshal Zhukov's Imperial Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing
Florida, United States
cigarcitybrewing.com

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
This Russian Imperial Stout is dedicated to Georgy Zhukov, arguably one of the finest generals of World War II. Opaque black in color, with notes of espresso, chocolate, dark toffee and hints of backstrap molasses. The English hop varietals provide a subtle herbal dryness, and finishes with a hearty slap of roasty espresso. Pair Marshal Zhukov’s with Mushroom Solyanka, dark chocolate, cherries and ground wars in Russia.

We brew and release Zhukov's in the summer knowing that a beer of this heft reaches its full potential a few months after release. So save a bottle for the cold winter!

80 IBU

Added by BigMcLargeHuge on 11-17-2008

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#304
Reviews:
580
Ratings:
2,769
pDev:
9.15%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
1,176
Gots:
931
Trade:
96
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 2,769 |  Reviews: 580
Photo of olradetbalder
4.75/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of jlindros
4.38/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My first Cigar City beer. Can't wait to try it. Got this thanks to either msulinski or mikereaser who each got me a bottle. I got me a bottle to drink nows and one to ages fer the ages.

A: An aggressive pour into my SN 30th Ann. tulip/goblet/snifter glass yields a large 2+ finger black colored head that slowly fades and leaves its mark on the sides of the glass. The beer itself is so dark it makes "pitch black" look like yesterdays gray.

N: The word on the street, or in the glass is roast. Tons of it, that is. Lots of coffee with that, some black patent malt, crystal malts, sweetness, caramel, brown sugar, etc. Some earthy hops in the background as well. A slight creamy chocolate comes through lightly. A touch of booze. Reminds me a lot, and I mean A LOT! of Imperial Stout Trooper.

T: Wow. Pretty thick and kinda rich. It has that marshmellow and nuggat like taste that NightStalker had. Thick and chewy. Lots of malts, crystal, black patent, and tons of roast. Lots of roast and coffee. Some minerality with lots of scorched malts and some bitterness that comes with that. Some earthy spicy hops along for the ride. Some warming booze, slight alcohol sting and boozy taste. Semi sweet, and comes with some caramel. WIth that is a slight sweet candy bar, touch of bakers chocolate, creamy oatmeal, and nuggat.

M: Thick and creamy, semi smooth, chewy, and marshmellowy, with decent carbonation.

F: Finish is pretty dry and gets really bitter. There is a nice combination of dry charred earthy scorched malts that adds a bunch of bitterness and a little minerality, as well as chewy earthy hops. A nice hop finish really. A touch of lingering sticky sweetness, and lots of lingering roast and coffee. Lots of lingering malts as well. Some bitterness and minerality on the back of the tongue as well. It really coats the mouth and sticks around. A touch of warming booze, but being 11.5% it hides it really well. I like this one, but it's hard to drink an entire 750ml by myself. I would like some smaller sizes or have to share with a friend next time.

 2,066 characters

Photo of oberon
4.53/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Maybe the deepest pour of any stout I have come across,jet black with a deep cocoa powder colored thick creamy head,just awesome.Deep molasses and coffee aromas really stand out when pouring,some roasted nut and chocolate round out an aggressive aroma profile.Thick and creamy feel to the beer makes it glide down to easy.Flavors of black strap molasses and chocolate start out on the palate wich is somewhat sweet but not overly so,French roast coffee and mild earthy tones keep the beer balanced and more quaffable,the alcohol is there but it didn't make it less drnkable.Wow this is a brash bad ass imperial stout,no wonder the high ratings,one of the best beers I have had this year...if not the best.

 705 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
4.47/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes. Finally opened a bottle at DLD 2010. Served in a mini snifter.

Pours black as night with a good mocha head. Head recedes quickly without leaving behind much lace. The nose is incredible with a wondrous balance of coffee, chocolate, caramel, and roasted malt. A good dose of booze to blend things up. The taste is equally decadent with all the flavors in harmony. Good, smooth feel with a bit of heat. Drinks incredibly well and this will be a big cellaring candidate for me.

 496 characters

Photo of nickfl
3.47/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - No head and an oily, utterly black body.

S - Mocha, coffee aroma. Some subtle smoke and caramel with a hint of boozy alcohol.

T - Spicy, medicinal and alcoholic. Very strong roasted grain flavor with a little bit of chocolate as well as some licorice and rosemary.

M - Thick, heavy, oily body, low carbonation, and a sweet, coffee like finish.

D - Drinkability is practically nonexistent; this is a huge, thick mess of a beer. It is obviously complex, but the alcohol is so rough that it obscures the character of the beer. I would guess that this has the potential to turn into something great, but it seems like it will take at least a year or two of aging for this beer to come together.

 698 characters

Photo of dcmchew
4.56/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of ygtbsm94
4/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of Ciocanelu
4.4/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Beavertown Extravaganza. Aroma has roasted coffee, light apple esters, sugar and rich malt. Taste is roasty with light smoked malt notes, dark chocolate and cacao. Sticky but not sweet, quite bitter and roasty.

 220 characters

Photo of Rifugium
3.75/5  rDev -14.2%

Photo of Kegatron
4.49/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml capped bomber into a couple of tulip glasses. Thanks go to Jw347 for this in a recent trade.

Pours black as motor oil coming out of the bottle, topped off with a ½ finger of burnt and blackened looking dark mocha head. There actually isn't a whole lot to the retention or lacing on this, as this peters out pretty quickly, but the amount of sticky brown oils that it leaves down the sides of the glass has you anticipating the dark decadence to come. The aroma is sharp in the nose at first with roasted coffee character, before a gooey smelling mix of chocolate and caramel malts rise up underneath. Citric green hops add some fresh green balance to this. Lot of beefy power here to the nose but I'm not getting any heat, as this merely amps up the robustness of the flavors.

The taste is thick and tangy in the mouth with chocolate fudge and toffee character up front. This is enveloped by crunchy burnt notes of roast and coffee, while a solid tingle of green and earthy feeling hops runs through the middle of the profile. The backend is heavy with leftover sweetness and citrus flavor before leading into dry roasted and zippy espresso finish. The mouthfeel is full, thick, and VERY chewy in the mouth. That 11% ABV is just beautifully hidden here, as you can feel just how big it is as it sits on the palate but there is absolutely no heat signatures coming out of this at all. Beefy but not boozy. Fantastic feel!

While not the most complex RIS out there, this doesn't have to be, thanks to the robustness, power, and most importantly balance of all of those huge flavors that are involved here. It's no wonder that this makes a perfect base for all of the different varieties that they put out of this beer. Just a well crafted Russian Imperial Stout with the alcohol content being right where I like it.

 1,825 characters

Photo of billab914
3.96/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle shared by Rhettroactive. Poured from a 750ml bottle into a snifter. It poured pitch black in color and very thick looking. It had a dark chocolate colored head clinging to the edges of the glass and scattered across the top of the beer. Great looking beer.

The aroma shows a lot of dark chocolate to it. I get some molasses and caramel sweetness out of it along with a little roasty bitterness. What I start to really notice though is a tart, somewhat fruity presence that has a bit of a raspberry like flavor to it. It gives it kind of a strange twist, but not enough to take away from all the other really good flavors.

The taste also shows a lot of dark, bitter-sweet chocolate to it throughout. The finish is where I get a stronger roasty, coffee like bitterness coming out. Again though I get a little bit of a fruity, tart, sweetness to it that just seems out of place.

The mouthfeel is thick and silky smooth with carbonation being moderate for the style. Overall it was a pretty good beer. I really liked the dark chocolate and roasty flavors but the fruity, sweet, tart, raspberry like flavors that I got just seemed out of place in it to me. Good beer but not great.

 1,188 characters

Photo of wethorseblanket
4.4/5  rDev +0.7%

Photo of vfgccp
3.81/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

July 2011 bottle, opened Aug 2012

A - Wow, the pour is liquid bowling ball black. Thick, creamy, milk chocolate brown head with fantastic retention and lace. Zero highlights on the solid black body.

S - Warm booze, balsamic, black molasses, toffee, savory, and anise.

T - Thick sweet molasses, burnt toast, dark roast coffee, cherry and plum fruits, toffee, dry dark chocolate, and cream.

M - Chewy mouthfeel. About as thick as they come.

O - Aggressive flavor profile; this bottle is definitely meant for sharing. It feels more over the top than in balance, which is cool if it's your thing but it's a little much for me.

 627 characters

Photo of atrocity
4.5/5  rDev +3%

Photo of nathanmiller
4/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of XmnwildX12
4.5/5  rDev +3%

Photo of mendvicdog
4.78/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled this at the DC bottle share at the Smoke and Barrel on October 14, 2012.

Appearance is exactly what you expect in a big stout, dark with a little creamy head.

Smell not that intense, but very pleasant, a little smoke and a tiny tart fruit

Taste is similar to smell; no surprises. The alcohol is hidden well in this beer. Mouthfeel just so smooth.

The whole beer is just what I would call smooth deliciousness.

 421 characters

Photo of Gkruszewski
4.28/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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

Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.37/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Slowly trudges out of the bottle a cumbersome, inky black body with a brief, dark brown head.

Smell: As one would expect, it has a deeply roasty nose, with vast notes of French roast coffee, unsweetened chocolate, London demerara. Lighter hints of vanilla and smoke tucked in as well. I'm rather perplexed about the amount of woodiness held within the nose, and did a double-take at the bottle to make sure it wasn't really from the cedar-aged group.

Taste: A weighty helping of blackened, roasty maltiness. Bittersweet chocolate sauce, blackstrap molasses, and rightly smoky carbonized coffee beans. Very light hint of vanilla. Slight dark fruitiness. The sweetness is offset by a fair amount of bitterness. This beer has a noted woodiness to it, especially for NOT being from the Humidor series. Warming in all the right ways. Prolonged, roasty finish.

Mouthfeel: Near-full mouthfeel. Medium carbonation. Creamy mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Good, satisfying, and soothing. This beer is going to pay for itself by lowering my blood pressure several points.

 1,069 characters

Photo of mdaschaf
4.06/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a very thick black, very oily looking and viscous. A small brown colored head forms upon pouring and reduces to a thin cap on top. Minimal lacing.

S: Tons of molasses, it really dominates the aroma. There is some chocolate mixed in, a little bit of coffee, and faint roast. Definitely know its got some alcohol in it as well.

T: The flavor is certainly still full of molasses, but to a lesser extent. The chocolate is more pronounced, with some licorice and faint dark stone fruit. The roast comes through on the finish nicely, not much alcohol presence.

M: Full bodied with moderate carbonation. Slight warming as it goes down.

O: A big stout for sure. Really over powering in terms of thickness and sweetness, great if it is the only beer you plan on drinking.

 779 characters

Photo of duceswild
4/5  rDev -8.5%

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.34/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

"I took a speed-reading course and read War And Peace in twenty minutes. It involves Russia."

--Woody Allen

Bottom of the Black Sea black with an incredibly thin slice of fudge milkshake colored suds. The almost nonexistent head is no surprise following an almost imperceptable escape of CO2 on crown cracking. Looks (and sounds) like carbonation might be an issue.

There's nothing wrong with the nose. On the contrary, each sniff delivers a blast of dark chocolate and licorice and most other roasted malt-related aromas as well. Firepower is definitely not an issue, so let's hope the same is true on the palate.

Marshal Zhukov's Imperial Stout is a massively flavorful RIS that is a better mouthfeel away from greatness. The shortage of bubbles keeps the beer from expanding (opening up) on contact and allowing one to appreciate the finer nuances of the flavor profile. It's still damn good stuff... and what happens with warming comes close to putting the lie to the previous sentence.

There's so much black malt that it could almost be classified as an Imperial schwarzbier. Specifics include high cacao dark chocolate-covered coconut (think Mounds bar), black licorice, blackstrap molasses and a surprising amount of vanilla beaniness. Talk about taste bud saturation. The next highest taste score can no longer be denied.

Rarely has there been a beer of this ABV that is this easy to drink. The alcohol hasn't hit me yet, but with each mouthful becoming a large gulp, it's bound to soon. The mouthfeel is not full, but it's probably just a lack of inflation rather than a barley deficit. Oh, what could have been.

Cigar City is on the right track with Marshal Zhukov's Imperial Stout, an RIS that means serious business. If they can get the carbonation kinks worked out, this big black ale has a chance to be... wait for it... legendary beer. Thanks to ktrillionaire for the opportunity.

 1,902 characters

Photo of drewone
3.5/5  rDev -19.9%

Marshal Zhukov's Imperial Stout from Cigar City Brewing
Beer rating: 4.37 out of 5 with 2,769 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.