Russian Imperial Stout

Russian Imperial StoutRussian Imperial Stout
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Stout - Russian Imperial
3.72 | pDev: 10.48%
Jan 03, 2017
Nov 19, 2009
Very Good
Russian Imperial StoutRussian Imperial Stout
Notes: None
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Photo of biboergosum
3.74/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by biboergosum from Canada (AB)

500ml bottle - once again, I shall refrain from making fun of the English description on the label. On to the brew!

This beer pours a solid black abyss, with scant basal red cola edges, and two fingers of puffy, loosely foamy, and bubbly brown head, which leaves strangely little in the way of lace around the glass as it quickly blows off.

It smells of roasted caramel malt, bittersweet chocolate, nutty artisanal coffee, black licorice root, a bit of phenolic yeastiness, and some indistinct earthy and leafy hop bitterness. The taste is bready and doughy caramel malt, some fading free-range peaty char, still prominent medium cocoa powder, Scandihoovian anise candies, random dark sugary notes, a hint of black orchard fruitiness, and some mild warming alcohol esters.

The carbonation is rather weak in its less than quotidian frothiness, the body a decent middleweight, and mostly smooth, with a wee airy creaminess hanging around like it has literally nothing better to do. It finishes well off-dry, the gently smoked malt and licorice keeping the lights on just a little longer.

Overall, this is a decent and more or less approachable version of the style, if a little light in the loafers at the same time. The ABV seems to be a bit reserved, but at the same time, very well integrated for what it is. Yeah, I do like this one, especially the subtle peaty smokiness, which is the only way I can appreciate it, as such.

Jan 03, 2017
3.5 by aztraz from Sweden on Jun 20, 2015
4 by olradetbalder from Sweden on Dec 01, 2014
Photo of craftbeersweden
4/5  rDev +7.5%
by craftbeersweden from Sweden

Almoust black beer with a dark, beige head.

Nose: Coffee, roasted malt, dark chocolate, nuts, caramel and licorice.
Taste: Herbs, tobacco, dark bitter chocolate, dark roasted malt, brown sugar and molasses.
Body: Full body with a complex texture. Soft carbonation.

A great RIS!

Nov 13, 2014
3.75 by pester from California on May 02, 2014
3.25 by kelvarnsen from Canada (ON) on Sep 16, 2013
4 by brbrocc from New York on Jul 04, 2013
3.75 by mtbdonn from Colorado on Oct 19, 2012
3 by rvdoorn from Netherlands on Jul 14, 2012
Photo of ThaCreep
2.95/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3
by ThaCreep from Belgium

You can feel the ground coffee in the nose, reminding some breakfast. In the mouth, the body is smooth and it feels mostly mild coffee (as happened several times or just cut to the water).

The tasting is done easily because the beer is drinkable but one wonders just what happened to own the power to imperial stouts. The bitterness is certainly present, but the finish is too easily tamed.

It's still light for a beer that claims resulting from the long line of Russian imperial stouts.

Nov 07, 2011
Photo of alpinebryant
4.2/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by alpinebryant from Connecticut

Charry smell, deep dark black with thick brown head.

Amazing licorice dark roast thick body. Sweet and savory

Bitter finish and a slight hint of tannins at the finish

Thick mouthfeel and a medium dryness

Really a great brew and glad to have tried this while on vacation in Brussels

Oct 04, 2011
Photo of HotHabanero
4.05/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4
by HotHabanero from Denmark

Bottled. Pours black with a tan head. Sweet nose with roasted malt, chocklate and caramel + alcohol notes. Sweet malty flavour with chocolate and coffee. It is full bodied, has a creamy to oily texture and a soft carbonation Ends up more dry and slihhtly roasted with some bitterness and alcohol notes. It is a very nice brew.

Jul 31, 2011
Photo of jrallen34
3.8/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by jrallen34 from Illinois

50cl bottle drank from a tulip, picked up in Gent...A light black beer with lots of brown in the light. The head is a light tan with ok lacing and retention, not much to see here folks...The aroma is dominated by coffee, strong black coffee, slight bitterness, alcohol on the back...The taste s very light to start, then you are bombarded by bitter roasted coffee. As it warms light vanilla starts to come in. The finish is bitter alcohol, doesn't lend to crushability which I'm hoping for in an only 8% RIS. More of a coffee style RIS...The feel is very dry and tannic, like it.

Not my fav style of RIS, but still decent enough.

Nov 29, 2010
Photo of richmof
4.12/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
by richmof from Belgium

Pours an intense dark, with an off-white (light brown head) that is somewhere between creamy and fluffy.

Great nose with smokey, earthy peat but also coffee grinds. This follows through on the palate with the malts really imparting a smokey peaty quality. Big flavours throughout: coffee, dark chocolate, dried fruits. It has a nice mouthfeel. Retains some effervescence and not too heavy, with a nice lingering aftertaste. The alcohol remains subtle despite the high ABV. Not a session beer but by god it is drinkable.

This is classed as retired but I just bought a recently brewed bottle in De Hopduvel in Gent!

PS Mods won't accept my picture even though it meets the specs but it is here:

Sep 26, 2010
Russian Imperial Stout from Hornbeer
Beer rating: 85 out of 100 with 14 ratings