Storm King Stout | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

2,633 Reviews
Storm King StoutStorm King Stout

Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Emerging from the deepest shades of darkness, a rolling crescendo of flavors burst forth from this robust stout. The thundering, hoppy appeal of Storm King subsides into the mellow subtleties of roasted malt, exhibiting an espresso-like depth of character in its finish. An exquisite blend of imported malts and whole flower American hops merge harmoniously in this complex ale. Discover the dark intrigue of Storm King, as it reveals the rich, substantial flavors that it holds within.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-10-2001

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Reviews: 2,633 | Ratings: 5,882
Photo of jabocu
4.67/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Mike at Brawley’s in Charlotte, NC for hooking me with one of these!

Very dark coffee color with a one finger dense tan cap. Cap diminished to lacings along side and surface within a minute. Lots of aromatic citrus hops. Nice caramel sweet maltiness with notes of coffee and dark chocolate. Alcohol is in the nose. This very robust flavor starts off as sweet caramel toffee, coffee and chocolate. Transforms into a very biting citrus hop bitterness. The bitterness clings to the back of the tongue as all the flavors mellow. However, the aftertaste is gone fast and leaves a charcoal bitterness leaving you wanting more. Full-bodied with light-medium carbonation. Very excellent beer! I just hope I can find some more.

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Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.67/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5


Pours as thick as melted wax, a black bitumen looking liquid that effervesces and settles with a nitrogenous looking separation that Guinness would be proud of. The head forms readily into a large brown mass, is well aerated, very crusty, bubbly and it laces the glass sides with eloquence. Head settles to a creamy 1/4” – but as thick as a “Navvies Slice”.
Nose, hold on – I get Chocolate Rice Crispies, the chocolate is so prevalent in the nose that I am now imagining a bowl of Rice Crispies sat in a pool of cool brown milk. Other aromas are malt, and er, well, erm… chocolate again. Hmmm. Tastes are chocolate at the beginning; cocoa powder in the middle, hoppy at the end, and the finish has a burnt roast twist and a lovely coffee bitterness. This must be what Cold “Hot” Chocolate tastes like.
I was so embroiled in drinking this beer that I took few Notes – so that’s it. One of my shortest Reviews.

Liquid Coffee Walnut Whip in a Glass. Young’s Chocolate Stout – eat yer heart out!!

9.1% - are you kidding me! Really!! Awesome. Very High Drinkability regardless.

“A bloody reet gud Staarrrt”, as we would say in Yorkshire, England.

Updated 12/25 : According to Rotsaruch, who knows much more about these things than me, as the bottle is undated (I checked several times) it was therefore a 2001 Vintage. So There!!

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Photo of DmanGTR
4.67/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - pitch black with very slight garnet hues in the light with 1/2" tan head that left a ring of bubbles and laced minimally in my pint glass.

S - dark chocolate, coffee, slight waft of burnt toast and smokiness. Somewhat floral.

T - very dark malts, chocolate, and coffee with a mild breadiness. No alcoholic taste detected despite the high alcohol content.

M - full bodied, light/medium carbonation. A little chewy and thick on the palate. Quite pleasant.

D - very drinkable. Extremely smooth but the alcohol may catch up to you.

Overall - This is in my opinion one of the greatest stouts available out there. It is rich, flavorful, and you do not need to drink a lot of it to be satisfied (even though you'll want to slam down a few of these in one evening). If the alcohol wasn't so high I'd say it would make an excellent session beer, much like Guinness Extra Stout, but since it is quite potent, I'd like to savor one or two of these on a cool evening with an irish cream cigar. Will buy again ($12/6 pack at Wegmans)

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Photo of khiasmus
4.67/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A- Looks like thick coffee. Pours a dark brown with a light tan head that settles to a thin lace quickly.

S- Wonderful. Piney hops with thick, sweet malt that leaves a heavy sensation in the nose, one that makes you want to smell it and savor for hours before you drink it.

T- The only reason this doesn't get a 5 is the slight metallic note. That's the only reason. Strong hops, strong malt, perfect balance but dense and intense.

M- Well carbonated but smooth, thick but light. This mouthfeel is perfect.

D- One of the easiest imperial stouts around to drink. Dangerous for the alcohol content.

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Photo of itcomesnpints
4.67/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I finally got to try this one, and it was better than I expected. I never truly enjoyed a RIS until Storm King came along.

The pour is a dark vacuum with a feisty tan head that quickly dissipates. Lacing is minimal. Right out of the fridge the aroma is mostly refreshing hop bitterness, but as it warms, the smell consists more of roasted coffee and dark chocolate. The taste is simply perfect. Deep roasted coffee and chocolate, followed with a crisp bitter hop aftertaste. A full-bodied brew that feels just right. Storm King Stout easily deserves all the hype.

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Photo of cakebread
4.67/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottled Sep 27, 05

A - Dark as night, two finger head that quickly faded leaving almost no lacing.

S - Roasted malt with a hint of the hops to come with a bit of a prune scent.

T - Dark bittersweet chocolate with coffee at first. Then come the hops and just the right amount of sweet to make this so balanced.

M - Almost creamy but not as full-bodied as I'd expect for a double stout at 9% ABV.

D - I pondered knocking off half a point because its just too drinkable for me, but would that be fair?

Postnote: I love stouts with hops that stand out, like Sierra Nevada's Stout. I find that incredbly drinkable for a stout and consider this the double stout evil-twin of SN Stout. I usually find double or imperial stouts to be "sippers", but I find myself having to slow way way down when drinking Storm Kings.

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Photo of ski271
4.67/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Dark brown with hardly any light passing through. Head is medium-sized, creamy, light tan and slowly diminishing leaving some light lacing.

Smell: BIG roasted malt aroma! Cherry, alcohol, milk chocolate, slight coffee, and a hint of banana. Very complex and wonderful.

Taste: Big and bold malt presence with dark, fruity, coffee undertones. As it warms up a bit, it reveals even more complexity. Resin, molasses, vanilla and… is that licorice? The finish is long, bitter and wonderful.

Mouthfeel: Everything about this beer is big and heavy, including the mouthfeel, but its creamy texture and soft carbonation make it much more drinkable than one would expect from such a robust beer.

Drinkability: See above. This beer is absolutely marvelous. A must try!

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Photo of egajdzis
4.67/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

(9 months old – 9/16/03) Poured a black, opaque color with a medium sized tan head that did leave some lacing on the glass. Aroma of sweet chocolate malts and a slight hint of dark fruit in the aroma as well. Bitter coffee, sweet chocolate taste, slightly hoppy. No alcohol can be noticed, considering this is 9.1 Pure heaven!.

(Cask 8 months old – 7/26/04) Opaque black with a small tan head and beautiful lacing. Roasted and floral hop aroma. Chocolate soaked hop taste with a strong roasted coffee finish. Dark fruits (berry and plum), nuts, and just the slightest bit of alcohol. This was a cask so it was not carbonated, and it was simply incredible!

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Photo of CJfromPhilly
4.67/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pitch black with a fluffy light tan/beige head thats sticks around for a minute & clings to the glass with every sip. Aroma is of malt & light smoke. Taste, ahhh. Roasty, toasty malts mixed with light smoke, coffee (black, no cream or sugar), and unsweetened chocolate. Hop bitterness, & a slight hint of alcohol which is almost TOO well hidden for a beer packing a 9.1% abv punch. The mixture of coffee, chocolate, & hops clings to your tongue well after the last sip is gone. Overall: this is the stout that made me appreciate stouts!

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Photo of QXSTER1
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

This beer in a bottle is great, on tap it's magnificent. A dark, rich brown topped with a dense, quiet tan head it pours thick like an Imperial Stout should. The mouthfeel of the first sip is impressive with full bodied chewiness and surprising complexity. Roasted malt and barley assault your taste buds and then mingle with the resiny hops for a truly complex brew. This is one great stout.

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Photo of bditty187
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Absolute blackness, there is no “hue” to it, opaque and dense. The brunette head reached a quick finger in height before shrinking to a loose soapy collar, which clung well. As I quaffed it slowly it laced decently. Magnificent looking, if for no other reason that the black body it possesses. A shallow whiff produced a pleasant roasted maltiness, I knew there had to be more, I went in for seconds, this time I noticed strong piney hops behind the malts. Imperial Stout no doubt, Americanized as well. The potency was strong enough to be tempting, so why wait to sip? The palate on Storm King surprised me, I wasn’t expected such a well-blended beverage. The roasted malts were far deeper and long lasted that I anticipated and when the hops were introduced to the tongue there wasn’t this epic battle for bragging right, but a sensuous dance that awoken my tastebuds. The roasted malts, with its own coffee-like bitterness, led the tango but the piney, bitter hops had its own moves. It was scrumptious and magical with an aftertaste of complex maltiness with a splash of hoppy bitterness that seamlessly allowed for a smidge of alcohol to round off the ale. I’ve witnessed Storm King reign on BA for over a year and now that I’ve finally tried it, thanks to sulldaddy, I understand why. The taste is aggressive and welcoming, powerful and yielding, stylish and blunt. I am impressed. Full bodied, thick in fact, with moderate carbonation. The mouthfeel is dead-on and truly lovely. I’m not gushing folks, this beer is awesome… and I hate every one of you who can drink this on a regular basis. No seriously, I do. It is going to be very difficult to cellar the other two bottles, thanks again sulldaddy you made my day!

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Photo of hyuga
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

First of all, a big thanks to fellow BA francisweizen for this sample, my first Victory beer, which I've been looking forward to for ages. This is a beautiful beer, I have to give it a perfect 5 in the looks department. The mocha brown head stays exceptionally and impressively well, which seems to be a tough thing for many imperial stouts to pull off. The aromas I'm getting are delicate, sweet chocolate, smooth and quite creamy mocha, toffee chips, and a hint of hop leaves, maybe some floral hop character. Very subtle and delicate aroma, but certainly complex and pleasing. On to the actual tasting. This is by far the smoothest imperial stout I've ever tasted. A subtle yet ever-present leafy hop character is the only thing that really stays the same character-wise all the way through this beer. In the front, there's dark chocolate and coffee, in the middle, sweeter chocolate and more intense hop character, very leafy with a good amount of bitterness. excellent contrasting of flavors. In the back, hop bitterness subsides a bit in favor of more chocolate sweetness. It has a mocha feel to it overall, but this characteristic is not always so noticeable. This beer is just mellow and smooth all the way through. It's rather relaxing. No tremendous assault to the taste buds, but complexity is still in profusion. Magnificently crafted. I really wish Victory would start distributing here in Arizona, but for now I'll treasure and savor every last drop of what I can get of this masterpiece. To those of you who can grab this at your local store, count yourselves lucky and appreciate what you have!

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Photo of techdiver
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a dense brownish black with nice two finger head that leaves nice lacing behind.

Not much nose to it. What's there is usual roasted malt with hints of coffee and licorice.

Taste is right up there with Expedition, and Stone. Well balanced with just the right touch of sweetness.

Mouthfeel is so smooth and carbonation enough to add crispness that makes it feel lighter.

Drinkability quite good as well, probably the most drinkable IRS I've had.

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Photo of wailingwench
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Purchased multiple times at Consumers Beverage in Buffalo. A sixer is totally worth the $10.

Foam Factor: Poured silky smooth with a tan head that eventually gave way as it warmed. Black, black, and more black. No light penetration here.

Skunk Factor: Changes over temp range. Starts out strong, in your face, and hop-like. As it warms, becomes more refined as chocolate and nut- like notes kick in. Finishes coffee-like, a tad bitter, and craving more. I truly enjoyed the taste progression.

Tongueland: Tastes as it smells. The flavors that emerged really balance this beer. Imperial is a superb trip down stout lane. Untill this point, I prefered an oatmeal or cream stout. Imperial has regulated those to breakfest fare.

Chug Factor: I sipped this all night long. The 9.5 % ABV reminded me that this was a beer an hour product. I passed up the opportunity to play beer pong to drink this. Another night, we had a keg of Canadian. I passed on the Canadian (a rarity) to sit in the corner and engage in lively conversation about the quality of this beer. Made me want to get a pipe and some loafers and sit in front of a fireplace and act refined.

Bender: This has made me feel overall pretty good about life. Here in Buffalo, there is nothing worthwhile going on in the winter except for the day that Storm King arrives. I have it on my calender. A great way to relax and take some time off from plastic cups.

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Photo of sulldaddy
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer is sampled at room temp.
I pour the brew into my snifter. The beer pours pitch black with a 1 inch creamy tan tightly packed head foaming up easily. The head also fades slowly to a surface layer in my glass. Aroma is a mixture of grassy hops and roasted malt, very balanced nose!
First sip gives me a creamy texture and slightly bitey carbonation. Flavor is twangy sweet like a baltic porter up front and then earthy hops in the middle, while the finish is roasted malt and even brief hits of chocolate. This beer is incredibly well balanced and easy to drink. No hint of the ABV. A great beer that is even better than I remembered!

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Photo of Gosox8787
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is my fifth beer from a six pack. poured from the bottle into a glass. Appearance is dark brown to black wiht a two finger chocolate colored head. Aroma is roasted malt, not overpowering, in coffee and expresso notes. There is alos a light citrus or pine aroma that blends in well and doesn't overpower the malt. This beer is well balanced. The flavors of the roasted malt and the hops do not overpower each other and blend well together. Expresso and citrus notes present in equal force. Finish is relatively clean. Mouthfeel is heavy to medium, but thinned out by some of the oily feel of the hops. Drinkability is great for a stout of this type. I could have three or four in one sitting. The clean finish allows for this.

Overall, one of the better stouts I have ever had. Great strong flavor and exceptional balance.

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Photo of ToasterChef
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Served cask'd, in a tulip glass, at the Great Lost Bear. It's an opaque dark brown liquid, with a big tan foam head. There is lots of rising carbonation in the glass, that slowed and finally disappeared. Some clinging carbonation remains on the sides of the glass. The aroma isn't as strong as I expected it to be. It can detect some roasted malts and some chocolate. Perhaps the cask format has limited it's aroma? Wow, what a stout! I can see why this used to the top ranked beer here. It starts out creamy and slightly sweet, with a kiss of chocolate. I swallow, and the bitter malt flavors come out. It's not a coffee bitterness, per se, but more of a roasted whole grain flavor. After swallowing, there is a coat that has a dark chocolate combination of sweet and bitter that lingers on for a long time. This is a very smooth medium bodied beer. Not too much carbonation; at least it isn't overbearing. There is a lot of coat left behind, which can sometimes be a problem if it is sticky or too sweet, but this really works well. Overall, this is a very drinkable beer. The high ABV is completely hidden, as is the sweetness put off but the amount of malt in this beer. This really is a great beer, and I'm very glad I could try it on cask. I've passed over the Storm King bottles for other stouts a number of times, but no longer. This is a great, readily available beer. It's worth reconsidering if you haven't had any in a while.

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Photo of dwarbi
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a thin, but creamy off-white head. The beer is solid black. The aroma is slighly sweet and a little hoppy. Fantastic taste. Grainy and complex. The alcohol taste lingers a bit, but it's still very drinkable. A tiny bit is lost in the bottle (compared to tap) but it's still an amazing beer.

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Photo of xgrigorix
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Twelve ounce brown bottle. Bottled on 1/28/03.

Pours viscous, solidly black with a dense dark tan head. Head lingers for quite a while before settling down.

Nose is filled with roast and citric pine loaded hops.

Dark chocolate, licorice, espresso, dark fruits - plum and raisin. Hoppy citrus bite cuts right through all those dense flavors. Just a bit of grapefuit in there, too. A slight perfume like character surfaced as it warmed.

Full bodied, with a long dry finish. Went great with creme brulee.

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Photo of jwinship83
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A- black body with a quickly leaving small coffee colored head and nice lacing. cant ask for anything more from a stout.

S- huge scent of roasted malts, bitter chocolate, and mild coffee.

T- roasted malts, coffee, toffee, chocolate and others i cant finger up front with a hoppy finish. very complex and extremely well balanced. great

M- Thick and chewy while still being smooth

D- possibly my favorite beer, and its available all year by me!. I couldnt believe i havnt reviewed this one before on one of the many many times ive tried it. if you havnt tried this before, i strongly suggest picking it up. i could drink this all night and look forward to more tomorrow. highly recommended.

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Photo of EStreet20
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

About two years on this bottle of Storm King. Bottles on date says Nov 14, 2005

12 ounce bottle, snifter glass

A - Brew has a vicious black color allowing no light whatsoever to pass through. About two fingers of tan head up top.

S - Big malty smell. Dark chocolate sticks out the most on the nose.

T - A very nice taste here. The hops that are very prevalent in young Storm King have faded, leaving the chocolate flvaor as the lead. The chocolate is followed by some residual sweetness. Finally, a bit of coffee like bitterness pokes around and lends itself to a nice aftertaste.

M - Nice feel here. Not as huge and full as some Imp Stouts but a good firm body.

D - I am loving this brew, and am probably drinking it too fast. This has really held up well. Tastes great and goes down way too easy for 9.1% ABV.

Notes: Two years may be the sweet spot for Storm King. I have a couple more of this vintage so I'll try to hold off on them.

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Photo of whartontallboy
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12-16-04 Bottling, poured into a tulip.
Pour is a dark black with a big tan head that slowly dissipates leaving a lot of lace. Looks yummy.
Aroma has some roasty notes in it, along with some citrus and some hops. I can pick up the alcohol, which doesn't surprise me at this ABV.
Taste, though, is amazing. Sweeter than I expected up front with some raisiny and orange-rind notes, but it gradually gives way to a very nicely nuanced roasted-malt flavor with a roasted/coffee finish. Hoppier than most huge stouts, but I think this balances the big roasty flavors extremely well.
Medium/creamy mouthfeel with just the right amount of carbonation dancing on your tongue. Much lighter than the designation and the ABV would make you expect, giving it a nice drinkability and smoothness.

Overall: Wow. That's what all the fuss is about, I guess. By far the best stout I've tasted in the last couple of years; I feel it takes all of the best qualities of stouts with none of the common drawbacks. If you want a big, balanced stout, look no further.

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Photo of jbramley
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow. This beer pours out a burnt motor oil black. I had to hold it up to light and tilt it so that I was looking through a very thin layer of it before I could see any brown. The head was thin but long-lasting, colored a nice tan. The smell was of coffee and dark chocolates. A very roasted smell. The taste was slightly sweet with a nice balance of hops, bitterness, and roasted malts. A very well balanced beer that warms up nicely (and warms me up nicely).

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Photo of BeerDawgs
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - A dark, mahogany brown. A little tan head, not much.

S - I smell the hops and malts. Not overwhelming.

T - Awesome! Alcohol is fairly strong, but not as much as you would expect from a 9.1% abv. I taste the malts at first and then the hop kicks in at the end. A little bitter but not too bad.

M - High carbonation. Fairly thick.

D - Excellent. I will buy this again.

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Photo of Hibernator
4.68/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I had this out of a 12 oz bottle that was dated Jan. 20 2004. Served the Storm King Stout in a pint glass.

The appearance is a very, very dark jet black. There is really cool cascading going on after the pour and sip on the side of the glass. Instantly there were smells of chocolate and mocha aromas.This brew smells sweet and plentiful.

The taste of this stout is delicious. Beautiful blend of hops and malt. Robust dark chocolate flavors burst through with complimentary sweetness. This imperial stout (9.1% ABV) is so smooth and drinkable. I can't believe how fast I drank this beer. Stouts of this power usually take a little bit of time to consume, but this was very enjoyable.

Highly recommended for fans of imperial stouts....this beer has all the bases covered.

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Storm King Stout from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
4.1 out of 5 based on 5,882 ratings.
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