Sea Monster Imperial Stout | Ballast Point Brewing Company

Sea Monster Imperial StoutSea Monster Imperial Stout
1,859 Ratings
Sea Monster Imperial StoutSea Monster Imperial Stout

Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our Sea Monster Imperial Stout explores the darkest reaches of the traditional oatmeal stout. This bold, rich brew first lures you in with roasted coffee notes, then grabs hold with hints of bittersweet chocolate and currant. Backed with a perfect hop balance, you’ll soon discover this is one monster of mythic proportions.

Added by OlieIPA on 11-28-2008

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,859 |  Reviews: 514
Photo of Brutaltruth
4.02/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beefy RIS pours a deep coal black with an excellent head of brown foam in a pint
glass that settles to a thick fluffy layer with very nice sudsy lacing. Nose of dark roasted
coffee, dark cocoa, deeply roasted malts, medium to strong notes of char, and subtle dark fruit.
Flavors follow the nose with notes of cocoa and deeply roasted and long standing java that
has lingered in a pot on high heat for a long time on the middle and back, cocoa falls off on
the sides of the taste with strong char flowing over the taste masking all other flavors other
than the bittering hop that presents itself on the aft of the taste. Nice mouth feel, full and
lightly warming with medium carbonation.


Roast lovers TAKE NOTE! This one hits all the marks of a DEEPLY roasted RIS.


 804 characters

Photo of DrinkThemAll
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of monty79_1997
4.05/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Lodisgrisen
4.19/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of q33jeff
3.82/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Bottle to Snifter. Aroma: Coffee. Toasted grains. Appearance: Dark black , medium white head, oily sheen after head fades. Taste: alcohol, burnt toast, Not great....The Ballast Point IPA (sculpin) is better, and its rare that i would prefer any IPA to a stout.


22oz Bottle to coffee mug...being discreet at a family pool in Absecon.

LOOK:Dark black, creamy tan head.
AROMA: roasted malt.
TASTE: roasted malt, notes of coffee, nutty.
FEEL: creamy, smooooooooth.

A nice creamy, tasty stout. Different in some ways, but almost on par with Victory at Sea. Better than I rated 18 months earlier.

 628 characters

Photo of kyle_goochstink
4.31/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Studfarm69
4.16/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of danoble1
3.84/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of tillmac62
3.98/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

BOD 355/15. Pitch black pour. World class head volume, lacing and retention.

Outstanding light nose of baker's chocolate, roast, molasses and a hint of dark fruit (plum, currant).

Medium body that is smooth but lacks any hint of being creamy. A bit under carbonated for the body but has a fairly effervescent middle and the finish approaches prickly.

The flavor profile is outstanding...especially as it approaches room temperature. The flavor is slightly blended throughout, but separation occurs in the middle and beyond. It begins with a blend of coffee and roast that flows to the middle. Here a rather sweet molasses and caramel take center stage with bitter chocolate playing a supporting role. Hops appear as well adding another layer of complexity and a mild bitterness. Underneath, dark fruit (plum and light currant) gain strength and briefly rise to the surface, as a sea monster should. As the finish approaches, the 10% alcohol rears its head in terms of heat and light astringency. The finish is a slow slightly sweet fade of molasses that succumbs to grain alcohol flavor and astringency.

 1,116 characters

Photo of Dragginballs76
4.1/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of ovaltine
4.24/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of ordybill
4.54/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 OZ bomber into a pint glass. Pure black color with a rich tan to brown head. smooth taste heavy with malt and chocolate. The high ABV is noticeable but blends well with the flavor.

 200 characters

Photo of Dewsby
3.84/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of NickThePyro
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of mntlover
3.99/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a black but some deep ruby highlights when held to the light. Small brown head falls quickly and leaves some light lace.

Aroma is roasted malts good doses of chocolate and coffee. Some light vinous fruity notes and light hop notes. Pretty basic big Stout notes nothing extra ordinary.

Taste is like the nose roasted malts, chocolate mainly with some coffee. Light fruit notes maybe some licorice hints. Overall a pretty basic Imperial stout nothing great but good.

Mouthfeel is only a big medium not quite full but medium level carbonation makes it feel nice.

Overall a good big stout but not as good as there IPA's sadly, still drinkable though just not something one would search out.

 697 characters

Photo of cindyjeffsmith
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

look: Very dark brown. Some cola highlights peek around the edges when held to light.
smell: bittersweet chocolate. Coffee albeit coffee with sugar and cream.
taste: the ciharacterteristics of the nose are there but also a modest but pervasive bitterness. Nice stout but no monster here, domesticated pet maybe.

 311 characters

Photo of KYGunner
3.99/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Absolutely gorgeous pour that sets up an eternal frothy head. Flavors start with bitter chocolate, lactose cream, roasted malts, coffee char and embers. Some hop bitterness at the end. Easy to drink and the priced right.

 221 characters

Photo of kinmundy77
4.52/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of hermit990
4.08/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Photo of CBrodbeck
3.68/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of mikebu
4.03/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of rodbeermunch
3.81/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thick ass black stout. If you wanna look for it you can find the deepest brown as part of the contingency. Aroma is just all burnt malt. All of it.

Taste drops a massive amount of two row and chocolate malt along with a hefty dose of hops. Big time. There is not much nuance here. Its good. Not as good as Victory at Sea. This one feels a little more like a Russian Imperial Stout with its increase in bitterness, burnt and dark fruit notes.

Its a good beer, but I'd rather have so many other things from this brewery, even in the same category.

 557 characters

Photo of DaveBar
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got on trade! 650ml bottle served at 9deg C in a tulip.

A- Opens well and pours a nearly 2" high brown head that lasts for nearly 10mins before film out. Super dark brown colour.

S- Nice malt but very metallic

T- Chocolaty good. Lots of roasted malt. Nice coffee at the end. Touch chalky coco flavor as it finishes. Nice bittering hops.

M- Creamy going down the dries up

O- Nice brew. Lots of body and coco/coffee notes and would be a good base for a nice bourbon barrel aged brew I bet you

Food Pairing

This nice brew went well with....... Beer braised beef ribs! Use this brew and it imparts a nice depth to the dish.


 633 characters

Photo of powdersoldier
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of cherche
3.75/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Sea Monster Imperial Stout from Ballast Point Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.02 out of 5 with 1,859 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.