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Storm King Stout | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

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Storm King StoutStorm King Stout
BA SCORE
4.05/5
Exceptional
5,942 Ratings
Storm King StoutStorm King Stout
BEER INFO

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

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

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#2,667
Reviews:
2,655
Ratings:
5,942
pDev:
11.85%
Bros Score:
3.8
 
 
Wants:
223
Gots:
933
Trade:
13
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,942 |  Reviews: 2,655
Photo of Sammy
4.23/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It was an expresso stout all the way. I see some people paying $10 . That could not be for a bottle! I paid $2.25. Good choice for the end of a session or meal because of the aftertaste. Unless you do not like coffee.

Had a second bottle, two years later and aged for that time. The carbonation eased off and it was rich smooth flavour. An excellent representative of its style.

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Photo of kylehay2004
4.15/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: two finger tan head on a jet black body with nice lacing. No bubbles that I can see.

S: this one has a bourbon note by my nose though it isnt aged. Vanilla, roasted malts, chocolates and a peppery note round this one out.

T: whiskey/bourbon again in the flavor up front with a full roasted malt with actually some jhops coming through. A light coffee note provides some bitterness.

M: full body and moderate carbonation. smooth and a little oily.

Overall: very drinkable for what it is with hints of bourbon/whiskey coming through on this one which I wasnt expecting.

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Photo of acurtis
3.75/5  rDev -7.4%

Photo of Texasfan549
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of jaydoc
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.36/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a thick, pitch black with a HUGE 3 inch chocolate milk colored head. Dense head that lingers for the duration of the beer. Sticky ring lacing on the way down. Absolutely beautiful. Smell is of dark fruits, sweetened coffee, and cocoa powder. Taste is of burnt espresso/coffee, bittersweet chocolate, and slightly sweet cherry/plum. A lingering bitterness on the back of the tongue after each sip that stays with you for a while. Carbonation is good and does not take away from the thick, creamy feel of this beer. Overall, this is an absolutely delicious RIS that I will be revisiting again. I am glad this comes in 12 oz. bottles as the 9.1% ABV can sneak up on you.

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Photo of GRG1313
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.08/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

im shocked i have not reviewed this beer yet, this is an old classic, and one of my stand bys when i was living back east. its a genre defining stout for me, but distinct from the others that have come since it i think. its richer and more chocolaty than others, more fluffy in feel, and less harsh on the booze. if it wasnt for getting wasted, you could sip on these all day. its less sugary, at least in the finish, the sweetness there in the middle is replaced by a malty bitterness on the back end, dry cocoa notes, and an english sort of yeast profile thats usually absent in this style. i also think its one of the more hoppy stouts going, save green flash or something thats basically just black ipa. this one is hopped just right, built for bitterness, but it works with the dark roast and the chocolate in here, adding complexity. the feel is wonderful, maybe its best feature, where that raisiny caramel middle comes in, the beer gets milkshake thick and super creamy, a delightful sensation in a beer like this. no alcoholic hotness at all, and dry in the finish for how big it is. maybe the best beer victory makes, and definitely a trend setting that hit the scene long before it was the cool thing.

 1,212 characters

Photo of spycow
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%

Photo of kjkinsey
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of Knapp85
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew poured out as a nice deep black color with a brown colored head. It doesn;t look as thick as some RIS' I've had in the past. The head leaves a decent lacing on the glass and keeps a good retention too. The smell of the beer is deeply roasted and burnt smelling with a light sweetness on malt coming through. The taste of the beer is a rich with chocolaty malts and roasted grains. The mouthfeel is a little thinner than I was hoping for but still had enough body to keep in within reason. Overall I felt this was a really good beer for the price.

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Photo of nmann08
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of t0rin0
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of oriolesfan4
4.62/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A damn good russian imperial stout. Not much to say about it then to say it's almost perfect. From a beautiful black with a tan head appearance, a very aromatic nose, and full of flavor to the smoothness and balance of the beer overall. It's a great beer and I'll be warming myself up in the cold winter months with this stuff.

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Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3/5  rDev -25.9%

Photo of metter98
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: It poured jet black into a snifter glass with a mocha-colored head. The head slowly settled down, but a thin layer of bubbles consistently covered the surface.
S: There are complex aromas of dark roasted malts in the nose along with notes of chocolate, espresso and floral hops.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and has lots of flavors of dark roasted malts. There's a substantial amount of hop bitterness for this style, which makes its presence in the finish.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied on the palate and there is some warming from the alcohol.
D: This beer does a very good job at hiding the alcohol from the smell and taste. The complex aroma and flavors make this a beer that I will definitely have again.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.45/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Has all of the ingredients for the perfect Stout. An Ideal color with a viscous texture and strong head retention. Ideal blend of espresso and bittersweet chocolate and a lightly powdery roasted grain quality. Enough in the nose and flaovr to demand respect. Enough heat to recognize it's potency. Still, no off balanced characters at all. No fusal alcohols, dominating hops, astingency, harshness, or accessive acidity. It grabs the throat a bit on the way down, but to be expected. Very clean for style. Difficult to criticise.

 529 characters

Photo of biboergosum
4.23/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A straggler from a cross-border jaunt this past summer, being saved for a "wintry day". By jove, I think that day has unceremoniously arrived...

This beer pours a solid black, a light vacuum - no edges, nada, with two fingers of thick foamy dark beige (ok, tan) head, which steadily settles, leaving some nice striated lace around the glass. It smells of citrus hops, roasted malt, a bit of chocolate, and some faint coffee grounds. The taste is big sweet roasted chocolate malt, more of a bitter cocoa than the confectionery sort, a soft underlying cafe au lait essence, and bitter citrus and pine hops, double-dipped in the aforementioned chocolate. 9.1% ABV, and it barely registers a warming tickle - wow. The carbonation is very soft, the body full, dense, slick and creamy. It finishes clean, the sweetness ebbing a stitch, allowing the doused hops more room to maneuver.

A warmer that does not come across as one, beyond being big everywhere else. As for its actual style, it succeeds on all counts. Tasty chocolate, big, and well integrated hops and alcohol - what's not to like here?

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Photo of kojevergas
3.8/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

9.10% ABV confirmed. 12 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a 5 oz taster glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed from notes taken about a month ago.

A: Pours a one finger beige-khaki colour head. Nice cream and thickness. Pretty good retention (~2-3 minutes). Body colour is a solid dark ruby-black. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Nontransparent. Opaque. Right on the money for an imperial stout.

Sm: Chocolate/cacao dusting. Caramel. Dark malts. Chocolate malt. Cream. Mocha. Hazelnut. Miky. A moderate strength aroma. No yeast character or alcohol is detectable. Good for the style. Appealing. I'm excited to try it.

T: Chocolate. Some bitterness from the chocolate too. Cacao. Caramel. Mocha. Cream. Dark malts. Balanced, if imperfect. Not a whole lot of complexity here, but it's damn tasty. I like it. Milky, with light hazelnut. Burnt - a characteristic I quite like here. Not great depth of flavour, but the flavour that does come through is enjoyable.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Good thickness. Good carbonation. Suits the flavour profile well.

Dr: Drinkable and enjoyable. Hides its ABV well. I could drink another; this is tasty stuff. An impressive beer from Victory. I quite like it. I'd definitely get this again. Exceeded expectations.

B

***
12/10/16: I've wanted to revisit this beer for years, so I picked up a 4-pack in Brooklyn for $10.99 USD.

Pours a classic khaki tan colour head. Creamy and soft with an impressive 10+ minute retention - not too shabby for a 9.10% ABV brew. Body is a true to style opaque black. A nice coating of lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

Aroma brings a lovely mix of potent roasted barley, charred malts, burnt sugars, chocolate (malt), black patent malt, and espresso-redolent bitter roasty coffee grounds. No traces of booze at all. Contrary to most imperial stouts, this does feature some hop aromatics - primarily floral. Aromatic intensity is average for the style. Suggests a roasty dessert beer more in line with a Russian imperial stout than an American imperial stout per today's style conventions. I dig the commitment to roast .

Taste: Classic imperial stout flavour. Roasted barley harmonizes with specialty chocolate malt and dark malt (schwarz malt/black patent malt) sweetness to good effect, with burnt sugars and charred malty harshness bringing a leveling balancing bitterness to all that malty sweetness in tandem with a surprisingly forward floral hop presence. The result is a beer that hangs in delicate balance in spite of its big bold flavours, and a beer that in hindsight was evidently the blueprint for almost every imperial stout that's followed (American or otherwise).

Showing up fellow tried-and-true classics like North Coast's brilliant Old Rasputin or Great Divide's now downtrodden Yeti, Storm King is a titan of a beer in terms of its inspiration and effect on contemporary expressions of the style, but can still run with the best of the contemporary big dogs. Hearkening back to an era when balance and harmony of flavour were enough and you didn't need the excesses of vanilla bean bourbon barrel aged coffee espresso marshmallow fudge explosion (or whatever extreme adjunct flavour the kids are deeming in vogue) to brew a good beer, Storm King is a must-try for any discerning drinker and a cornerstone of American craft beer. Many may dismiss it now as the worse-for-wear crotchety old grandfather of imperial stouts (or skip buying it because it isn't part of a limited release), but for my money it was a hell of a beer when I got into beer and it's a hell of a beer now.

Yet, there's room for improvement in terms of intricacy of flavour. With such a delicate balance already in play, it's hard to imagine being able to add more vivid deep flavours without ruining it, yet other imperial stouts have succeeded.

It just works, ladies and gentlemen.

B+ / VERY GOOD

 3,978 characters

Photo of dmorgan310
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of emerge077
4.18/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow, the 1000th review...or does BA stop counting after 999? Guess not.

Well, this hefty stout pours black into a chalice, an inch of dark tan foam rises to the rim of the glass. Head is dense, fairly aromatic notes of hops and roastiness.

Taste is burly, rich burnt malts, bitter baker's chocolate, and dry bitter hops linger in the finish. Alcohol is expertly hidden. Mouthfeel is big, not exactly viscous, but getting there. Coats the palate going down.

I've got a couple more lined up, this is a perfect winter sessioner. 3" of snow in Chicago, and I feel like hibernating with some of this...

'99 vintage courtesy of Steve, thanks man!
Really amazed by how this has held up. Very rich and chocolatey, somewhat mellow but remarkably no signs of age. Still massive, bittersweet chocolate fullness, some tobacco, just sublime. Age this beer!

 849 characters

Photo of brentk56
4.43/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Muddy brown body with a tan head and a blanket of lacing

Smell: Both the roasted malt and fruity hops are present on the nose

Taste: Rich and malty dark chocolate flavor with the fruity hops making an early appearance and building through to the finish

Mouthfeel: Heavy bodied with plenty of alcohol

Drinkability: Massively complex and very well-balanced

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Photo of WillieThreebiers
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of oline73
4.13/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this on cask at Max's, served in an imperial pint glass.

Appearance: Pours almost black with hardly any light coming through at the edges. There is a finger of thick creamy tan head that leaves just a ring around the edge.

Smell: Sweet roasty malt with a hint of dark chocolate.

Taste: Again, sweet and roasty flavors dominate. I'm picking up hints of dark chocolate and warm alcohol with a bitter and hoppy finish. There is a really nice balance between the hops, sweetness, and roast.

Mouthfeel: Thick and creamy body with mild carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: This is a really nice beer. The balance is amazing, I love the hops along with the other flavors. Really nice finish.

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Storm King Stout from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Beer rating: 4.05 out of 5 with 5,942 ratings
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