Storm King Stout | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

Storm King StoutStorm King Stout
5,930 Ratings
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

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,930 |  Reviews: 2,649
Photo of Wattsox
3.7/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle, consumed Mar 2011, BBE Sep 28 2015.

A - Pitch black body with a good tan head that dissipates slowly, leaving a little covering and some decent lacing and cling.

S - Roasted grains with citrussy hops, along with some chocolate and coffee notes.

T - Similar to the aromas, smoky chocolate and coffee notes with some bitterness, hop bite and mild alcohol tones.

M - Smooth and creamy, light carbonation, medium body.

D - A little harsh and quite high on the ABV front for a session drink, but quite pleasant on its own.

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Photo of Keffa
4.03/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Duvel tulip. Enjoy by date of April 2015!

Allowed to warm for about 45 minutes.

A: Pours pitch black, 1 finger tan head rushes up, then settles into a small ring and leaves a little lacing. Nice.

S: A little citrus, followed by huge whiffs of roast, coffee, chocolate, licorice, and a little dark fruit. A slight whiff of alcohol as well.

T: As the nose goes, so does the taste. All of the components of the aroma come into play with the taste, as well as some smokiness and a little wood/earthy hop.

M: Creamy, thick, covers the palate. Not overly carbonated, just enough.

D: Very drinkable. Alcohol only makes guest appearances once in a while, and the flavors are very well developed and quite nice. Nice clean dry finish is nice.

This one is very nice. Easy drinking, good flavor. Careful
though, the ABV can catch up pretty quick.

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Photo of Franz4
3.73/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle with no freshness info

A- dark, minimal head, as expected.

S- initial scent is a surprising pine hoppiness that lasts about 10 seconds after the pour before fading. After that more burnt chocolate and caramel is apparent.

T- chocolate, very roasty chocolate with a mildly bitter finish where some of the pine in the nose becomes apparent again, this time it's not surprising, and it's rather pleasant. Mild alcohol in the aftertaste.

M- Lighter than expected, finishes very dry.

D- drinks ok, not going back to the glass too quickly though. I'd probably pass on this for other stouts.

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Photo of robwestcott
2.46/5  rDev -39.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

poured cold and pitch black from the bottle to a surly darkness 10oz goblet with a 1/2 finger, super thin and short lasting mocha head.

hmm... relatively unpleasant, medicinal aroma. strange for the style.

bitter and not very good truckstop coffee followed by dark fruits. this ain't looking good.

low carbonation, medium bodied, creamy (?).

drinkable - nope, not for me.

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Photo of Jimmys
3.48/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: pitch black, practically can see my reflection, with a deep mocha hued head.

S: roast, rich cocoa. sweet dessert fruits. tobacco. cigar wrapper. a touch of vanilla.

T: cranberries. chocolate bomb. deep roasted coffee. really leaves a lingering bitterness/acidity.

M: silky and creamy. standard

D: honestly, i expected a little more from this one. i love the brews that come out of victory and i have seen a little hype around this one, but to me this seems like a pretty standard RIS. im sure ill give it another shot and hopefully have a more positive review.

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Photo of tl00camaross
4.6/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is my go-to imperial stout. Cococa and roasty malts, great hop bitterness, and I can easily drink them all night. Glad to have it a regular offering at the store I purchase them from (out here on the West Coast). And for the price you can't beat it.

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Photo of SisuPride
3.39/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Black, not much of a head
S - I consider this to be a little spicey smelling - it will wake your nose up.
T - Almost too spicey in flavor for me. A beer I have to be in the mood for paired with the right meal and beer to precede it.
M - A little creamy and relatively rich. Not oily - more clean.
D - I would drink two of these at most. I would say it lingered in my hand longer than most beers - maybe because I wasn't wild for it. Better than most beers because I am a fan of stouts in general but I would place it in the bottom half of stouts I have had.

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Photo of Dlish
3.77/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A- good amount of tan head. Pretty dark, light on the edges.

S- Creamy, malts, but of booze chocolate, it has just a hint of hops.

T- Roast chocolate marshmallows. Toasted malts, not so much chocolate more a toffee and vanilla taste.

M & D- Pretty creamy, not to much carbonation. Its heavy, but for an imperial stout is pretty drinkable, in fact i'm drinking it in just a pint glass.

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Photo of SWMeyer4141
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It's been over two years since I first tried this beer, about the same time that I started trying craft beers. I'm not too sure how much I liked it back then, but wow, I love this beer now.

Appearance-Dark black with a 2 finger tan head, lacing subsides quickly.

Smell-Extremely Hoppy, Malt, Chocolate, Expresso with some citrus.

Taste-Lots of flavors going on. I can taste the chocolate and the citrus from beginning to end, with a slightly bitter finish, that stays around for a bit leaving you wanting more.

Mouthfeel-Alcohol is definitely present, very hoppy suprise.

Overall-This is a very hard beer to rate. Is it a Stout or DIPA? To me i'm not sure, I've had better RIPs before. Either way, don't think too much into it, great beer. drink up and enjoy.

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Photo of Allpe45
3.63/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Purchased during my travels along with some others that aren't available in this state.
Enjoy by July 15, 2015

Some light permeates it during the pour, giving it a reddish hue, but it appears jet black in the glass with glorious mocha-brown head which rises all the way to the top of the snifter, despite a semi-gentle pour. It dissipates shortly to leave thin spots of lacing in various shapes and sizes all around.

Extreme hoppiness, combined with roasted malts and undertones of coffee, makes for a very interesting smell.

Just like in the smell, the taste of hops really asserts its dominance over everything else. This is definitely the hoppiest tasting imperial stout I've ever had a chance to taste. Starts off earthy and citrusy, with roasted malt and burnt espresso poking their heads in, and hop bitterness carrying all the way through and residing long after each sip.

Medium bodied with light carbonation, fine, but there's an intense lingering feeling, like the entire inside of my mouth is puckering. Must be the bitterness.

The 9.1% ABV is very well masked. The lingering mouthfeel makes this pretty hard to drink for me. It's an interesting brew with its brutal hoppiness. It is fairly drinkable but not quite what I was expecting. There is a time and a place for this beer, and I would gladly drink it again, but not until I get to that time and place.

I wish black IPAs (I mean cascadian dark ales, I mean American black ales, I mean American style India black ales, I mean lol) were more similar to this beer, rather of the wave of hoppy porters that have been coming out. This beer is like the offspring of a DIPA and an RIS.

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Photo of jman892
3.56/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Just black, very little head, moderate lacing as it goes down

S - Toasty, not getting much else

T - Tastes hoppy, bitter, faint lemony-orange citrus fruit taste comes through in the end.

M - strong carbonation for the style, and a moderately creamy mouthfeel

D - Alcohol is well hidden, and goes down easy. Overall a fairly straightforward stout, not the most complex or extreme, but gets high marks for drinkability

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Photo of gfreed
3.78/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

As RI stouts go, this one is fairly tame. That's not a bad thing, but if you're looking for an RIS to beat the crap out of your taste buds, look elsewhere. Still, it has enough force behind it to punch a hole through the remaining shell of a New England winter. Good color; the dull-sheen blackness here is on a scale with a fistful of black Twizzlers. Its weighty, malty stoutness is nicely offset by a light-handed hoppy edge, bitter enough to dry things out but not enough to offend. For a 9%+ beer, it's very easy to drink which also means it hits pretty hard by the end of the glass, even when consumed slowly. No tall ladders or circular saws, please.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.95/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass, this beer has an amazing cascade on a center pour. Giving me a good vibe early on! The beer is an opaque brown-almost-black coloring with a chocolate milk colored head that appears to be light, airy, and bubbly. The head condenses down to around a 2 finger mark by the time I start drinking, and the retention is very decent. Also, this beer is leaving an impressive lacing on the glass as it goes down into my belly. The nose is a tad bit boozey, which is fine by me, as well as a little chocolatey and a lot of molasses. Further smells give off a mocha-type aroma. The beer is light and dry in mouth, carrying strong coffee flavors immediately onto the tastebuds. That bitterness of dark roast is counteracted by a slight choco-molasses sweetness that is extremely subtle. The alcohol is present in the taste as well, but again, very subtle. There are also some brown sugar/vanilla hints buried in there. The beer is quick on the tongue, and the finish is crisp and sharp with the bitter coffee aftertaste. This is a tasty stout, and I would imagine would be great in the northeast winters. Very tasty!

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Photo of shand
4.53/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 ounce (bottled about a year ago) bottle into a chalice.

Pours a deep black with a huge (especially for the style) brown head that retains quite well. Lacing is also very good. The smell is roasty malt, brown sugar, coffee, chocolate, dark fruits and some nice bittering hops. The taste on this is also very good. . The sweetness from the sugar and fruits comes in immediately on the tongue, but quickly succumbs to to roasty malts, coffee, and a very nice quantity of hops. The aftertaste is wholly bitter, primarily from the earthy hops and coffee.

The mouthfeel is full-bodied with a fairly high level of carbonation from the style. It's also quite drying. The drinkability is also quite high for such a big beer, I keep taking sips that are quite bigger than I probably should. This is a superb RIS highly recommended for those who like their brews bitter.

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Photo of russwbeck
4.28/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

As always, my official numbers represent the freshest version of the beer I've had, the others are just for reference.

3/05/11 Review

A: Black pour with a big, fluffy, sticky, brown head. Retention is wonderful, as is the lacing. 4.5

S: Far more hops than I expected. Roasted malts, with a hint of coffee in the background. 4

T: Hops are much less noticeable in the taste. Roasted malts and perhaps some chocolate up front give way to a nice coffee taste. 4.5

MF: Dry aftertaste, medium carbonation and bodied. 4

D: Alcohol is hardly noticeable, dryness keeps you coming back. 4

2011 and 2012 enjoyed side by side on 9/21/12


A: The 2011 has a much larger brown head, but that might have been due to a better pour. Fluffy and strong, not unlike chocolate milk on top of a black pour. Lacing and retention are phenomenal. 4.5

S: Molasses and dark fruits have come out big time on the aged version. Chocolate and booze rest underneath. The hoppiness of the fresh version is nowhere to be found. The aroma overall is much more assertive, but less balanced. Really interesting progression between the two. 3.5

T: The taste could not be more different from fresh Storm King. The dark fruits and molasses, like in the aroma, are huge on the 2011. The roast is the second biggest change as it basically tastes like I'm eating coffee beans (which is actually something I enjoy...especially chocolate covered espresso beans, yum). It actually makes the underlying chocolate as enjoyable. The booze is pretty pervasive. I'd say I enjoy the taste of the 2012 version better as this is a bit all over the place...but I can say this might improve with a little more age. Certainly changing into a completely different beer that I'm excited to try again next year (as I put back a full 6er and this is only #2 enjoyed). 4

MF: Heavier body than the 2012 with much less carbonation felt on the tongue. The beer is velvety smooth on the palate and has much less of an aftertaste. The beer is a bit easier to drink, but doesn't quite satisfy me as much. 4

O: Not really that great of a beer, but I certainly wouldn't turn it down. As I said, I'm really excited to see this one develop further, but I'd say if you're aging a few...don't drink it after one year. I'd bet this gets better.


A: The head is a bit less impressive than the aged version, but still is top notch. Dark brown on top of a black pour, how I believe a Russian Imperial Stout should look. 4.5

S: Very nice chocolate, roasted malt, and fresh hoppiness. The booze is not nearly as noticeable as it is on the 2011, but some of the dark fruits are. Much more balance, and more inviting in my opinion. 4

T: The taste is as deep and balanced as I remember it from the first time I had it a year or so ago. The hops that permeate this beer fresh are really impressive and I'm sure have faded with time. The taste starts off with chocolate up front which is followed by a smack of hops and is finished with some roasted malt that resembles coffee. The combination of roast and hop bitterness linger on the palate for a good long while. 4.5

MF: Medium body with an above average amount of carbonation that tingles the mouth. For me, the balance and depth of the flavors make it a really drinkable RIS. That, combined with the 9.1% ABV that you can hardly taste makes this a winner all around. 4.5

O: Honestly, it's better than I remember it and probably one of my favorite non-barrel aged RIS. Can't believe something this good is sitting in bottle shops across Pennsylvania, which is typically a beer wasteland. Don't skip this next time you pass it. 4.5

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Photo of mikeg67
4.02/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle. Pours dark brown with a thick, foamy, long lasting, brown head. Aroma is of bready, roasted malt, some coffee and brown sugar. Full, creamy, tangy body. Taste is roasted malt, cappuccino, chocolate, molasses some dark fruit and a lot of earthy hops. Long, complex finish. Delicious brew.

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Photo of mellowmark
3.97/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. brown bottle to a glass Chalice. Enjoy by 4-29-15. $12.99 for a 6-pack.

Appearance: Pours a deep brown almost black color with a 1-finger creamy brown head. Lacing is good, leaving in spades. The head retention is not great, going away rather quickly and leaving a faint ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell: Charred oak, cherries and brown sugar. Kind of a campfire quality. Cigar tobacco.

Taste: Bitter up front with a prominent sweetness all the way through that gives way to the charred, smoky and bitter character. Aftertaste is dark chocolate, burnt toast and bitter black coffee. Earthy hops round the whole thing out with just a kiss of citrus.

Mouthfeel: Mouthfeel is medium and creamy. Carbonation is in between medium and low. Alcohol is barely noticeable. Pretty mild up front, but then it just blasts you with flavor and bitterness at the end.

Drinkability: Medium

It's doesn't blow me away like some RIS's have, but it is still very good all around, especially for it's price and wide availability.

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

Finally got around to reviewing this. The pour is lovely, featuring an off white 2 fingers of head across a large oversized snifter. Black in color of course.

Oak, vanilla, chocolate, brown sugar, and pine hops are in the smell. The hops are much more pronounced that in most stouts.

Much like the smell, oak is a large player in the taste. Some dark chocolate and maybe a pinch of vanilla creep in. In come the hops after that, a large amount of pine hops to be exact.

The feel is nice being medium-full-ish in the mouth. I enjoy the soft character and efficient carbonation.

Overall, this is a solid stout worthy of a try from all craft drinkers. One of the more bitter stouts I've had, but it is a welcome change.

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Photo of JohnQVegas
4.19/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle into The Bruery tulip. Best By date of Oct, 2015. Heh.

Pours impenetrably black, none more black, black as the abyss, black as... you get the picture. Makes other black beers look pale. Two-finger brown head on top settles quickly into a dense, creamy cap that has ridiculous retention. Nice, delicate lacing. This one looks simply amazing.

Nose is full of citrusy hop aromas, grapefruit coming through most prominently. Lightly roasty with a bit of baker's chocolate. Really though, the massive, lightly astringent bite of the piny, grapefruity hops dominates.

Taste starts with the same massive hop presence. Big, floral grapefruit over a moderately astringent rindy bitterness. Underneath, smooth, intense roast melds with mellow baker's chocolate, so dry and deeply roasted it's almost a bit ashy. Intense but refined, this one is an edgy blend but still manages to avoid being to coarse or brash. Alcohol is nicely reserved. Finish is long, packed with citric hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel is full bodied, creamy, a bit cut by the massive citric hop presence.

Nicely drinkable. Big, bold, and intensely hoppy, but not hard to drink at all. Alcohol stays largely hidden, flavors are smoothly balanced, though with this many IBUs and level of roastiness, there's only so much smoothness that's possible.

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Photo of cmq103
4.2/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: As with most RIS, the pour is dark and thick. If you pour from the bottle with a purpose, you can generate a moderate medium brown head, though is quickly dissipates to a thin ring. Moderate lacing clings to the side of the glass.

Smell: I read a lot of the reviews prior to actually buying this RIS. I agree that the hop presence definitely dominates this one. Mild chocolate & malty caramel, fading to a faint citrus aroma. Both the aroma and taste benefited as the beer warmed.

Taste: A "right in your face" bitter roasted chocolate hops. The bitterness follows through to the very end. Not in a bad way. Kind of what I expected and wanted from a fine Victory beer. The alcohol is hidden well with this, but make no mistake it's there to bring you to a happy place both in mind and taste. As mentioned before, the taste, for me, improved as the beer warmed.

Mouthfeel: Moderate carbonation, with a pretty amazing hop bite for a RIS. I do love the combination, as IPA and Stouts are two of my favorites.

Drinkability: Hell yeah, but a sipper for sure. I could easily see myself having a few of these on a quiet night where I just want to ponder the goodness the world has to offer. Victory has not disappointed me yet!!

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Photo of windypete
4.2/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

had from a bottle, poured nice & black like oil with a very small head to it, with a nice chocolate colour to it.

smell was malty, chocolate with coffee notes to.

taste was smooth with the maltyness hitting first & choc & coffee notes blending through smoothly on the end.

overall this is a very nice RIS with a smooth taste, a sipper! i will be getting more of these for sure.


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Photo of nataku00
3.8/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured at room temperature bottle (Enjoy by date of July 15, 2015) into a snifter. Pours a pitch black with some dark browns at the edge of the glass when held up to the light. A finger of light brown soapy head that slides back to the surface with a few large bubbles. Some light lacing that slowly slides back into the glass when swirled.

Nose is some milk chocolate, some roasted malts, slight licorice, and some earthy hops.

Taking a sip, milk chocolate on the tip of the tongue, slightly lactic, licorice is still there. Dark roasted malts and hop bittering lingers on the tongue after swallowing.

Medium bodied with lots of soft carbonation helps to provide a decent creaminess in your mouth. Flavors are well balanced, but not as bold as I like in an imperial stout. Fairly easy to sip on this, and the light warming effect helps on a cool evening here at home.

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Photo of carolinabeerguy
4.28/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a Cigar City snifter. Enjoy by November 8, 2015 printed on label.

Appearance: Pours a motor oil black with a 2 finger densely creamy mocha brown head reminiscent of a chocolate milkshake. Excellent head retention and lacing.

Smell: Chocolate and toasted malt, molasses and a hint of citrus and pine hops.

Taste: Bittersweet chocolate and resinous hops up front followed by toasted malt and caramel in the middle before ending with a blast of bitter citrus at the finish. Aftertaste is bitter hops and burnt toast. Very hoppy flavor for a stout and I like it.

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied and very creamy with a high amount of prickly carbonation. Excellent combination of the two elements.

Drinkability: High drinkability. While having multiple bottles in on sitting may not be ideal, you'll definitely enjoy the one your having. It's a sipper and one to savor.

Overall: Excellent beer overall. One of the best Russian Imperial Stouts on the market. I would highly recommend trying this one.

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Photo of warbird07
4.17/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2011 batch poured into a snifter at 59 degrees....

Pours deep brown with small off-white head that lingers, moderate lacing. Smell is real nice with a pronounced hop aroma, followed by a fruity, specifically blackberry precence. Taste is fresh-like, dark burnt malt, a bit of alcohol, with a bitter finish. Mouthfeel is satisfying. I liked this beer but seems a bit young. Interested in what a year or two would do...

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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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Storm King Stout from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Beer rating: 4.05 out of 5 with 5,930 ratings
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