Storm King Stout | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

2,636 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: 2,636 | Ratings: 5,893
Photo of nvsblman
4.78/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Black, no light is making it through this beer. About a half finger of roasted brown head that dissipated over the course of a minute or so to leave only a ring around the glass.

Smell: The smell of freshly roasted coffee with a slight hint of hops.

Taste: Overwhelming flavor! So much flavor, so many tastes, so complex I don't even know where to begin. First thoughts are espresso, slight citrus hopiness, molasses. As it warms a bit of a chocolate character begins to emerge. Leaves a pleasantly dry aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Heavy, very creamy mouthfeel. Seems the perfect consistency for a sipping beer like this.

Drinkability: Despite the high ABV% I could drink a couple a long relaxing sitting, but probably not much more than that.

A very bold and flavorful beer, can't wait to sample this again!

Thanks to francisweizen for sending this my way!

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Photo of kegerator
5/5  rDev +22%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Probably the best stout i have had to date.
Had on tap at the Gingerman in NYC.
poured out a nice rich dark brown, almost black typical of a stout
smelled very nice, coffe, a little chocolate perhaps
taste: very rich taste, and surprisingly i got very little or almost no bitterness from this one.
very smooth in the mouth and coated my toungue very nicely
I am not a huge stout fan so i need to be in the mood to drink one, but if i am i will reach for this one for sure.

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Photo of BadBadger
4.9/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled NOv. 11, 2002. Opened May 4, 2004.
Wow, a fantastic imperial stout. Pours a pitch black color. A beautiful brown head forms. Nice lacing remains after every sip. The taste is amazingly complicated with hints of caramel, coffee, and perhaps chocolate. This is a very smooth beer. Also very drinkable, even at 9.5% ABV. Be sure to drink this at room temp for best taste.

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Photo of tar
4.38/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very dark black--even when held to light, with a one centimeter thick, frothy, light brown head. The head diminishes to nothing more than a ring around the glass (which leaves behind some lacing on the glass) and a discontinuos skim of bubbles over the top of the beer. A strong smell of coffee and chocolate issues forth from the glass even when held at some distance. An inviting hint of hops also comes forth in the aroma. Tastes quite strongly and very nicely of coffee and espresso like flavors. Chocolate flavors and the bitterness of hops also come through nicely, particularly in the finish. Smooth and full-bodied, this very tasting beer is highly drinkable despite the rather high alcohol content. Overall an excellent beer and one which I will definitely be looking forward to having again.

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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 GreenCard
4.1/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: deep deep mahogany, opaque, a thin layer of tan head quickly dissappears to leave some "rorschach" patterns on the surface, viscous looking liquid!

Aroma: a big hit of coffee and soy sauce, port-like, vitamins, malt, alcohol, burnt raisins

Flavor: initially sweet but then roast and sweet at the same time, the silky malt backbone slowly gives way to a robust coffee/burnt toast bitterness laced with a bit of hop flavor, finishes surprisingly dry with a long-lingering roasty aftertaste

Mouthfeel: full body, light but prickly carbonation, smooth, warming

Overall Impression: Wow, that pretty damn good! This beer definitely stands up to the hype. Rich and fortifying. Great with semi-sweet dark chocolate. Reminds me a bit of the Belgian Special Import Guiness, but a lot more complex and fantastic!

This bottle was courtesy of frank4sail, who brought it (amongst many others) to Belgium for me.

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Photo of Afterburner
4.72/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Black as pitch. Totally opaque in my pint glass. Can't see any light coming through. A small amount of dark-brown head appeared and retired quickly.

Smell: Hops, coffee, chocolate, bourbon, plums, and malt all mix together in a pleasant miasma of aroma.

Taste: Outstanding flavor. Starts with the hops and some subtle woodiness, which gives way to a burst of vanilla, malt, and faint hints of anise midway through. The finish closes the proceedings with some strong mango flavors, more hops, and a barely noticable alcohol burn.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is almost perfect for this beer. Rich and velvety. The bead is small, so you don't have a lot of in-mouth effervescence. But there's enough there to give it texture.

Drinkability: Dangerously drinkable. The alcohol is hidden well. However, it's a reasonably heavy beer, so you'd probably fill up pretty quickly.

Overall: A nicely balanced Imperial stout, with a lot of complexity. Definitely recommended.

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Photo of PhantomVodoo
4.52/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled Jan. 20, '04. It's been way too long since I last had this beer!
Brown head maintains a nice creamy coating over the beer throughout. Beer is dark brown to black. Mostly opaque in the glass with some ruby highlights at the edges.
Roasted malt with coffee notes and floral hops in synchrony with each other in the aroma.

Taste shows a sweet, rich roasted malt backbone. Coffee notes with chocolate beginning to show more as the beer warmed. Big dose of floral hops with hints of citrus. Well balanced and finishes nicely.

Full bodied with a very creamy mouthfeel. Almost perfect.
So full of flavor, yet so smooth and drinkable. Alcohol is extremely well hidden.

Overall, this is an exceptional imperial stout.

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Photo of joshlara
4.89/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottled Sept. 2002. This review was done within three months of bottling.

Appearance: Pours an opaque black color with a darker brown tan head that dissipates to a thin lace that clings to the glass. When you get that color head you know it is going to be one big beer.

Smell: Aroma is wonderful, cascade hops not usually associated with the imperial stout genra, tobbaco leaf, black cherries, coffee, and burnt chocolate all come through. Outstanding!

Taste: Wow! This is one extremely bitter beer. Burnt chocolate malt flavor up front, hints of coffee and tobacco throughout, finishing with that extremely bitter citric hop punch. I love the high amount of hops used which in my opinion takes this beer to another level and seperates itself from other imperial stouts. Finishes with an alcohol kicker to round out an incredible drinking experience.

Overall: I love this beer right after it is bottled as the hop presence is most pronounced. I absolutely love the aroma. I remember someone asking what is your favorite smelling beer and this is hands down. Black cherries, tobacco leaves, and pacific northwest hops dominate both the nose and the flavor. Extremely bitter but oh so drinkable. I love it!

I have also sampled the '02/'03 a little over a year after bottling and it is much more subdued, much more like other imperial stouts. The dark fruit flavors are more prominent and the citric hop flavors I like so much are definately take a back seat. They fade to the background. It mellows, more black currant, prunes, and raisins are found in both the nose and the flavor. It does seem smoother and silkier as it ages, but personally, I much prefer this beer young. The ratings reflect the first review.

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Photo of shapudding
4.78/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a fresh growler brought home from Victory yesterday. The five finger head mellowed nicely to a thick, creamy, brown one finger head. Typical stout carbination, just enough to play with your mouth and make things interesting. I can smell some grape, caramel/molasses. Nice coffee flavoring, toffee/molasses, there is a light licorice flavoring. Dry finish with the grapefruit rind flavor. Smooth and creamy, slightly chewy. Nice drinking beer, not too heavy.

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Photo of Jacobob10
4.42/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on November 21, 2003.

Pours out as black as night with a dark tan head. Smells great, lots of coffee-like aroma with a slight tocuh of alcohol, but not overpowering by any means. The taste is rich, complex, and smooth. Slightly hoppy, lots of coffee flavor, tiny bit of chocolate, and really masks the amount of alcohol that is in there. Great roasted flavor with a touch of sweetness. Silky smooth and goes down great with no bitterness or bad aftertaste. A truly excellent beer that I will most definitely be purchasing again.

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Photo of dippy
4.6/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I picked this sixer at random of the rack of my local Packie and I couldn't have been more pleased. Pours a deep black with a rocky head reminiscent of blown bubbles in your chocolate milk. An intoxicating aroma, slightly sweet as this beverage is a nice 9% ABV.
What suprised me about this brew was the hoppiness. As a drinker torn between Stouts and IPAs in heaven as I had found my muse, my comprimise. O.K it isn't THAT hoppy.
This beer was like a dark french roast coffee, not so much chocolate in this case.
The mouth feel was smooth, and medium bodied which adds to it's drinkability. I could drink these all year long.
This may be my favorite stout to date. I will buy it again.

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Photo of beerluvr
4.77/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Sampled at The Ginger Man, NYC. Arrived to the bar with a deep dark tan head over black...I mean ink BLACK opaque liquid. Nose is overwhelming, with fresh hop, and roasted, damm near incinerated barley, espresso, coffee, & chocolate too. Just a bit smoother on tap than in the bottle it seems.Taste is roasty malt bitterness mixed with loads of leafy hop flavors, slight smokiness. Undertones of fruit appear also. The finish is long as hell, just slowly fading out into a hoppy roasted flavor. Very drinkable...almost dangerously so!

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Photo of woemad
4.36/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Bottle purchased at Jim's Homebrew in Spokane for $2.78. "Bottled on Jan. 20 2004." I bought a six pack about 2 weeks ago - the first time I had ever seen this in Spokane. This will be updated as bottles are sampled after aging.

This poured what appeared to be an ultra dark ebony color. When held up to the light, there is a slight browning around the edges. Very big mocha colored head. Took it's time going down, and never completely did disappear.

Smell is not terribly strong. it is mostly of coffeeish roast malts and dark fruits such as figs. There is also a slightly winey odor, reminiscent of port.

Taste is primarily of roasted malts. There is a slight hoppiness that comes in near the end and finishes with a mild crispness. This does not obscure the fact that the malts are the stars of this show, providing flavors similar to espress, figs, black currants, chocolate covered cherries, and port wine. Alcohol flavor really comes through as the beer warms up. Mmm, this is good. Very complex. This would be great with a rich chocolate dessert.

Mouthfeel is thick, which is perfect for an imperial stout. The viscosity of this stout matches 10-40wt. This is a dessert that comes in a bottle.

This is a very drinkable beer if you like imperial stouts. Otherwise this would be a bit much. Even a fan of the style, like me, would probably have to stop at two, because it is quite filling. There's also the abv factor (FWIW, my bottle lists the abv as 9.1% instead of 9.5, as per BA), as a few of these - if you have room for them - could get you into trouble. All in all, this is a very tasty beer, and am glad I found it, and look forward to trying it aged.

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Photo of jakdracula
4.8/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I am lucky enough to live within stumbling distance of Victory, the 'shock and awe' brew pub.

I never leave without a growler full of this great world class beer.

Storm King pours well with a dark tanish head, and has a sweet, inviting smell of mostly dark roasted malts.

It's said that odors give us our best memories, Storm King kind of smells like the front row of a small town's club, if there are any musicians out there, they know what I mean: sort of damp and wet, with a hot gal flashing you.

The mouth feel is a bit like you've accidently got some bees in your mouth while riding without your helmet, which to me at least is a good thing, it gives me a feeling of freedom.

Let's be honest, the taste is really why we are here folks, and if you like great tasting 'fighting' beer, then this one's for you... This is easily one of the best, if not the best American Stout Beers avialable.

So, get it, drink it, love it.

Beer: it's what's for dinner.

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Photo of ColForbin
4.03/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled on: Oct 29 02 Opened: Apr 5 04
[I cellared this beer for about a year before drinking.]

Pours with a thin dark tan head. Aroma is one of bittersweet chocolate, coffee and some bitter hops. A slight whiskey aroma as well. Smokey, chocolatey flavor with a bitter hop finish. Thick mouthfeel; coats the tongue as it goes down leaving a French roast aftertaste. This beer is a meal - it would be a challenge to have more than one. I've had this beer fresh as well, and I have to say that the fresh version is a little more lively and interesting. I do recommend aging a couple bottles - after a year the beer becomes incredibly smooth. But drink the majority of your six pack fresh.

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Photo of SeanChouffe
4.43/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Black opaque color with red highlights. No signs of effervescence in the body. A rich full tan head that diminishes rather quickly, but leaves a clingy lace. Aroma is of hops, roasted grains and chocolate. Mouthfeel is creamy like no other -- full bodied and smooth with low effervescence. The taste has a slightly sweet start roasted flavors in the middle and a welcome hop finish.

I can see what all the rage is about.

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Photo of DaveGood
4.37/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured pitch black with a thick light brown head out of a 12 oz. bottle. This is how a stout beer is supposed to look!

The aroma is mild on this. It contains a nice grassy hop scent but is primarily driven by the dark roasted malts. The alcohol is also fairly predominant in the smell.

What the aroma is lacking, the taste more than makes up for. It is a very thick, yet smooth beer with moderate carbonation. The taste is driven by the dark roasted malt flavors. There are dark chocolate and expresso flavors present, as well as a slight hoppy bitterness at the end.

Overall, this is a remarkable beer and I can definitely see what the buzz is about. It is extremely smooth and quite possibly the best stout that I have had the pleasure of experiencing.

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Photo of Mitchster
3.05/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours out to an opaque black with barely distinguishable brown accents, forming a rocky dark-tan head (but not as dark as say, a Kzoo stout or Founder's Impy). Retention is good as is lacing. The label says it is bottle-conditioned...there is a small amount of peppered yeast in the bottom of the bottle. The aroma is rich and inviting, predominantly hoppy (distinctly Cascades) with notes of grass, cocoa, charcoal, light molasses, vanilla, almond, and sweet milk chocolate. As it warms, alcohol is overwhelmingly evident in the nose. Carbonation is moderate. Mouthfeel is paint-peeling hops, abrasive at first and then becomes astringent with burnt grains and alcohol towards the finish. Medium-dense body. Taste is initially sharp with a ton of citric hops and deeply roasted grains, sweet almonds, vanilla, toffee, and lots of burnt sugar. Bitterness level is moderate. The wierd finish begins with firmly burnt grains (heavy on the black patent here), chalkiness, an everlasting burnt sweetness, citric hops with pungent acidity, and lingering leather and burnt wood. There is mild isopropyl alcohol in the aftertaste, but as it warms, it becomes nearly obnoxious. I get this wierd creamed sweet corn taste in my belches. The 9.1% ABV is more evident in alcohol than in body, dextrins or mouthfeel, indicating a high degree of attentuation and suggesting a warmer (>75F) ferment.

My first drink of this was from a bottle that was a year old and I was throughly unimpressed with how it aged. My notes indicate the mouthfeel was syrupy and flat, the finish was redolent with isopropyl and the rest was littered by odd off-flavors. This bottle is fresh and is much better. It's not a stand-out brew like the ratings would suggest, but then again, I'm used to Kzoo Stout as my everyday beer. IMO, this is overhopped and over-boozed, but some people may prefer the West-Coast style. I'll skip on this again.

BTW, this is not a typical Imperial Stout, but a West Coast style hop-bomb stout.

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Photo of grynder33
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep blackcolor, small head, creamy soft malt chocolate aroma, sweet chocolate light taste, soft aftertaste with a little bitterness. Nice blended taste, but I thought it would be bolder. A very, very good stout, but not number two overall. Wish they would distribute to Wisconsin

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Photo of merlin48
4.43/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This Victory product pours an opaque, ebony color with an immense, rocky, four finger tall, light brown, head. Retention was good, and lacing was superb.
I've enjoyed more profound stout aromas before, but this one hits the mark, spot on, for style. Bigtime roasted malts dominate the nose, with coffee, chocolate, some smoky nuttiness, and a note of the 9.5% abv.
Mouthfeel is robust and full bodied, and is smooth all the way down.
Taste is awesome. Chocolate and roasted coffee, in just the right meld of flavors, with a burst of fresh McIntosh apples midway through. A solid, funky, hops presence lends a pleasant, bittery, nut balance. The high abv which I noted in the nose, is curiously absent in the taste, affording this stout a high drinkability mark.
This is one of the five best American stouts on the market. Goes down smooth and easy, with an exceptionally smooth character. Very enjoyable paired with a sharp cheddar, or strong blue cheese like English Stilton. I could kick myself for buying a single bottle, instead of a case. Victory is quickly becoming one of my favorite American breweries, and Storm King is another excellent reason why this is so.

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Photo of PatandDavid
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

One of those: this isn't my favorite style of beer, but it's time to see what the fuss is all about...and Storm King delivers! 10.5 pour enjoyed at Redbones last Friday. Very very dark, opaque. The head had the color of dark latte and was nice and frothy. Grassy hop aroma was intriguing. Taste was like roasted coffee meets hop, very interesting and well done. The mouthfeel was definitely full...I knew the alcohol was there, but they almost got away with it. I thought the finish was like dark chocolate. This beer deserves it's fine reputation.

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Photo of drewbage
4.02/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle that was bottled on December 9th 2002 into a straight side pint glass.

Dark black bodied beer with a low creamy tan head,

Aroma is dark black roast, currants and a grassy herbal hop aroma. The faintest touch of diacetyl lurks deeply behind the other aromas only become apparent around the edges behind a brandywine alcohol.

Flavor is roasted and thick with caramel and an acrid black burnt carbon finish to the brew boosted by CO2, The final impression os chocolate and port in a beer that roundly clears itself off for the next sip.

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Photo of Ellbert
3.26/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 2.5

12oz. bottle dated March 18 2003

Appearance: Perfect, very very dark with a large pillowy head that leaves plenty of sticky lace and leaves a thin layer of foam all the way to the last drop of beer.

Smell: Very mellow compared to what I have had before. The hops are much more subtle after a year. Alcohol is more promident and the malts are more subdued. I can smell some mollasses and caramel though. Some roastedness also comes through.

Taste: Very sweet, almost too sweet. It leaves a string of over the top sweetness, almost sour in your mouth as the roasted malt and mollasses come in. The hops are subdued in the taste as well. Not very pleasant now.

Mouthfeel is great. Very thick and rich. Perfect amount of carbonation to add some tingling on the tongue.

Not very drinkable. The flavor has really taken a dive here, at least on this aged bottle. I prefer this fresh.

Initial tasting:

Apperance: The apperance of this beer is very good. It had a small head though which took away from the marvel of it. However it poured a drak brown but looks as black as night in the glass.

Smell: One thing that took me with this brew so far is that the hops are right up front in the aroma. I'm not used to that in the imperial stout style however it is very pleasing. There is also the smell of roasted coffee, a sweet malty smell is there too.

Taste: The taste seems to fade in, there is many flavors to this. There is a roasted flavor that sticks but there is a hop bitterness that shows itself towards the end. It leaves your mouth dry with a warming of alcohol.

Mouthfeel: Excellent, nice mellow feel, very thick and rich with just the right amount of carbonation. Leaves your tongue with a nice coating.

Drinkability: A very drinkable stout in the sense where I would love to have one. Definitely one of the better Imperials I have had but as to more than one sitting, I will have to pass. This is far to rich and to high in alcohol, and the alcohol is very evident.

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Photo of canucklehead
4.63/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Malto for this sample. My god , the head looked like a Starbucks exploded into a full gale making me realize that this stout was for the big boys or girls. It smelled like a cross between Old Crusty and Rogue Imperial Stout mixed together; all plums, alcohol, hops and tobacco.

The taste was to say the least intense; big, nay huge hops with a backbone the size of Texas. I love Barleywines and so was not overwhelmed by the complexity and in your face profile of this beer.
Yeah, cellaring would smooth things out but I loved this beer.

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Storm King Stout from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
4.1 out of 5 based on 5,893 ratings.
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