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Gigantic Brewing Company

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Russian Imperial Stout
Ranked #337
Ranked #6,273
4.09 | pDev: 8.31%
Gigantic Brewing Company
Oregon, United States
Most Most PremiumMost Most Premium
Notes: Blacker than the uncaring hearts of the Czars of Russia, richer than their estates, more decadent than their palaces, and larger than their empire, this bourbon barrel aged imperial stout is truly MOST Most Premium.
Reviews: 19 | Ratings: 80 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Pivopijak
3.4/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Heavy molasses flavor. Quite sweet without enough hops to balance the profile. Not as much gravity as it looks like it would have. No noticeable carbonation.

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Pivopijak from Washington, Jul 08, 2019
Photo of sjdevel
4.47/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Look + deep brown/black color - 1 finger head - decent lacing and foam ring remain - deep tan colored foam

Smell + a big blast of booze - sweet rich chocolate, toffee, coffee, burnt grains, and tobacco - slight smokiness - woodsy - very aromatic

Taste + huge rush of alcohol upfront - strong caramel and coffee - jumps right into smokey campfires and chocolate smores - starts off very sweet and then slowly fades into dry bitter chocolate and toffee - very flavorful

Feel + fairly full bodied, but thinner than I expected - even though it is barrel aged, it should feel a bit thicker

Overall + I thought this beer was very good. It has a lot of barrel character: bourbon drawn from the wood, charred oak from the inside of the barrel, chocolate/toffee/caramel flavors are very rich.

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sjdevel from Colorado, Apr 20, 2019
Photo of TheDoctor
3.6/5  rDev -12%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Serving: Bottle
Bottled: 2017

Looks god-awful. Thick and black with a gray-brown suggestion of froth. Looks almost completely flat. No retention/lacing. (2.5)

Really big molasses and bourbon character, cherries, cocoa. (3.75)

Thick, sweet, syrupy mix of bourbon, cherries and dirt, roast walnuts, molasses and big sticky vanillins. (3.75)

Thick and cloying, heavy with little carbonation and a lingering roast/booze finish. (3.5)

This is indeed gigantic, though I can speak to "premiumness".
It is far from appealing when poured. What little head there is clings to the edges looking honestly like the bubbles in spit. This head seems to only be due to my violent pour. The smell and flavor are both very big and I would actually say a little messy. The smell has an old-school molasses/char profile with a strong bourbon/dark fruit presence. The flavor is similar with a monstrous barrel presence. No heat thankfully, tons of vanillins, cherry, cocoa, a hint of oxidation. Neither the smell nor the taste is a mess, but I would say both are messy. I would give straight 3.5s, but the vanillins come through really nicely and the general sweetness of the taste is actually pretty nice once it gets closer to room temp. Nonetheless, it is a little intense and syrupy-boozy for me. Great label art though. (3.5)

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TheDoctor from Quebec (Canada), Apr 11, 2019
Photo of Greywulfken
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pitch black pour looks oily in the glass, putting up aromas of molasses and bourbony chocolate syrup... Runs toward the sweet end of the spectrum - lots of booze and chocolaty molasses... Medium-full-bodied, smooth and soft, a little sticky... A solid bourbon barrel-aged stout...

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Greywulfken from New York, Mar 29, 2019
Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

This one pours an exceedingly dark black, with the smallest head, and no lacing. This looks nearly still.

This smells pretty burly, with roast and tobacco, oak, bourbon, dark chocolate, and espresso.

The lack of carbonation kind of mutes things here, but it's still an elegant and mostly well-brewed barrel-aged stout. The barrel character is nice, silky smooth bourbon and spicy oak, with some marshmallow, tobacco, spice, dark chocolate, and light coffee. I get also some dark black breadiness.

This is medium bodied, with a soft creamy feel, and not much carbonation. It's a definite slow sipper.

The low carbonation takes a bit to get used to for me, but there's a still lot to like here.

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GreesyFizeek from New York, Apr 18, 2018
Photo of russpowell
4.07/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 2.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours lack as night with minimal caramel colored head. Big-time viscosity, a little lacing, no head retention

S: Much dark fruit, a touch of Bourbon, vanilla once warm, plus smoke shows up late

T: Follows the nose, a touch of booze warmth, carob & dry oakyness up front, just a little smokiness & chocolate. Woody dryness, dark chocolate, vanilla as this warms, just a little boozey barrel as well. Finishes with barrel dryness/boozeyness, a touch of vanilla & chocolate raisin

MF: Fairly chewy, low carbonation, warming

A very good Imp stout with barrel aging, I do suspect this beer would've been better 6 months or so ago, some aspects are tamped down. Drinks pretty easy for its whopping 12.4% ABV. Love this brewery, they are 4/4 in my books

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russpowell from Arkansas, Mar 25, 2018
Photo of jzeilinger
4.24/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Pitch black colored pour with very thin off white colored lacing.

S - Dry powdery cocoa aroma with light toasted chocolate and spice.

T - Bourbon, spice, oak, dark chocolate, lots of alcohol effervesence.

M - Big medium body and silky smooth.

O - This worth seeking out. Totally enjoying this beer.

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jzeilinger from Pennsylvania, Feb 12, 2018
Photo of Derek
3.98/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

No head? Nice bourbon aroma with underlying licorice and molasses. Similar flavour, with some coffee notes, good bitterness, warming alcohol. Very little carbonation.

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Derek from British Columbia (Canada), Nov 03, 2016
Photo of spacecake9
3.99/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this bomber up on my recent east coast road trip.
A - Pours black with no head at all. Then a small tan ring formed.
S - Big bourbon molasses nose. This aroma says Go Slow.
T - Flavor follow the nose. Molasses and very boozy.
M - Low carbonation. Mouth feel is thick but not as thick as you might expect.
O - This is a very good beer. If I have any complaint, I wish it had a bit more flavor depth and complexity.

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spacecake9 from Illinois, Oct 10, 2016
Photo of peensteen
4.2/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Jet black with a minimal whisp of tan head and no lace. Smell is of bourbon and oak, roast and bakers chocolate, some vanilla, coconut and fudge brownie batter. Taste follows the nose, fudge, chocolate and bourbon, coffee comes out on the palate and mixes with the chocolate and gives a nice mocha closer. Lightly carbonated, big full chewy body. A really nice BA stout, well made and hard to find fault with.

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peensteen from Ontario (Canada), Aug 25, 2016
Photo of Impfan
4.62/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Thick midnight black pour, almost nonexistent head. Very syrupy body. Nose and flavors of deep, dark chocolate, coconut, and bourbon with dried plums, figs, dates, raisins and nuts most evident. I wish this were a bit less sweet, and that it had a tad more carbonation, but the flavor is so delicious that I can mostly forgive these minor flaws.

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Impfan from Washington, Jul 04, 2016
Photo of MAB
3.79/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Sampled at Beerfest 2016.
An odd one to score-- Black in color, with very little head.
The alcohol hits you immediately, with roasted coffee, chocolate, and licorice notes soon following.
The mouthfeel is heavy. Syrupy, almost.
I really liked it, but a 4 oz. sample is about all I would want.
Too much for a hot afternoon-- probably better in the wintertime.

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MAB from Alberta (Canada), May 13, 2016
Photo of wordemupg
4.07/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

650ml bomber poured into tulip 14/3/16

A black right out of the bottle with with shallow cola edge, a little still with a dump down the middle pumping out a finger of foam that leaves no lace

S vanilla, burnt marshmallow, chocolate syrup and fudge, some char, heaps of sweet bourbon, smells rich

T much like the but with a little more booze, char, and bourbon barrel, some molasses burnt coffee, and black licorice are added to the mix. It's big and boozy but rich and intense

M thick liquid but it could use some bubbles to give it some life, oily on the palate, some heat going down but understandable at 11.5%

O this big ass BB aged RIS has some intensity but needs to mellow and my bottles a little flat, some tweaks and age could make this one world class

The important aspects are well taken care of but some smaller parts leave room for improvement. I like it but can't see myself spending over 20$ on another bomber to find out if this bottle was a little flat

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wordemupg from Alberta (Canada), Mar 14, 2016
Photo of biboergosum
3.84/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle, with a great name, right in line with Stone's 'Sorry, Not Sorry'.

This beer pours a solid black abyss, with the barest of basal cola edges, and one very svelte finger of merely wispy and bubbly brown 'head', which leaves a few instances of streaky ocean plume lace around the glass as things slowly subside.

It smells of sweet cocoa, grainy and doughy caramel malt, heavy Bourbon notes (rye-soaked wood and vanilla, mostly), some free-agent smokiness, black licorice, a red vinous fruitiness, and mild earthy, leafy, and grassy hops The taste is more rather sweet chocolate-ensconced caramel/toffee, a lesser Kentucky whiskey booziness, some plum, soused raisin, and fig dark fruit notes, mild ashy roast, a bit of untethered brown sugar, and more plain leafy, weedy, and floral hoppiness.

The carbonation is almost a no-show, but for a very, very low-key burbling frothiness, the body a decent medium weight for the style, and generally smooth, as the alcohol keeps 'er tight, and the hops seem just too listless to interfere here. It finishes tempting the border of full-on sweetness, as the potential bittering saviours all drop off.

Overall, not a bad go around at a big RIS, though there does seem to be a sense of disjointedness pervading this offering - it is indeed too sweet (but at least in a robust manner, FWIW), without an adequate roasty or hoppy offset. The 23-proof alcohol is pleasingly integrated, sure, but this is still a bit difficult to swallow, without substantial palatal rest periods in between glugs.

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biboergosum from Alberta (Canada), Mar 04, 2016
Photo of JISurfer
3.34/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Definitely needs more carbonation, this one seemed flat. Tasted like a BCBS light, but not as "hot". Probably would be better with a little age on it. The more I drank it, the less impressed I was with it. Going to be tough to make it through the bottle.

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JISurfer from South Carolina, Jan 27, 2016
Photo of ccg
3.81/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

It looks surprisingly like a glass of cola. Not much carbonation here.
Classic bourbon-barrel stout smell with oak and roasted malt, mixed with an earthy, red-wine-like, slightly astringent alcohol smell.
The flavor has chocolate and a hint of something like coffee in addition to sweet malt and a little bit of bitterness at the end.
The mouthfeel follows the look of the beer in coming across sort of like a glass of flat Coke.

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ccg from District of Columbia, Dec 10, 2015
Photo of LiquidAmber
3.92/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours pitch black with virtually no visible carbonation; a ting of tiny bubble around the glass with no lacing. Aroma dominated by bourbon with dark toasted malt and fresh dark fruit. Flavor follows, with hefty bourbon up front with sweet dark toasted malt with fresh and dried dark fruit, mostly plums and raisins, light vanilla. Medium bodied with a hint of creaminess and mild carbonation. A big, bourbon forward Russian imperial stout, but the base stout is overwhelmed by the barrel flavors. The base is good, and supports the bourbon fine, but does not show the char and roasted coffee character that made Most Premium stand out. The bourbon is quite nice, so I enjoyed this. A bit undercarbonated, but within reason for a BA stout.

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LiquidAmber from Washington, Dec 05, 2015
Photo of Sir_Whats-his-face
4.69/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Nice, hefty bourbon presence with a thick enough mouthfeel to support the prodigious sweetness. Just a little more carbonation and this would be among the top tier of bourbon barrel aged stouts. Another very good beer from Gigantic!

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Photo of Jjski
3.93/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

If I could write a very short review it would be: meh. Cotton candy, sweet, with an alcohol burn on the back end. Lacking dark roasts or bourbon notes. Meh. It's not worth any more effort.

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Jjski from New York, Dec 01, 2015
Most Most Premium from Gigantic Brewing Company
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 80 ratings