Storm King Stout | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

BA SCORE
92
outstanding
5,906 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
Ratings:
5,906
Reviews:
2,639
Avg:
4.1
pDev:
11.95%
 
 
Wants:
224
Gots:
920
For Trade:
13
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,906 |  Reviews: 2,639
Photo of dpcoz
4.21/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Storm King Imperial Stout
12 oz bottle - Standard Pint Glass
Total Wine - Claymont, DE

A - pitch black, solid, slightly viscous during pour. 1.5 finger caramel head that dissipated into a milkshake-like lacing, mocha colored.

S - roasted malts, fresh hops, faint coffee, caramel and chocolate, earthiness feeling to the aroma. Take a second to swirl the glass around and the piney hops come alive in a big way, very refreshing, especially in a stout

T - sweet beginnings, chocolate and coffee come together in a mocha-like presence, almost like a milk stout. Hints of caramel add to the sweetness and linger on throughout. Turns over to a decent bitter in the finish due to the roasted malt presence. Good hop presence, carbonation is prevalent but nowhere close to being overkill. Good balance in this stout.

M - thick. Chewy. Coats the mouth well, leaves an aftertaste of fresh mocha, chocolate and roasted malts.

D - surprisingly affordable, not hard to find in the Philadelphia area. Hides the alcohol well while delivering flavor and good transition. Different flavors, scents, hop presence and roasted maltiness make this this a complex beer. Storm King is arguably the best Stout being produced in the Delaware Valley.

 1,230 characters

Photo of billab914
3.08/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Bruery tulip. Poured pretty close to black in color with a full inch of dense tan colored head filling the top of the glass. Decent head retention and lacing on the glass.

The aroma shows a bit of roasted malt, chocolate and coffee mixed with an herbal hoppiness. The herbal flavor seems to come through particularly strong, especially for a stout.

The taste starts with some sweet chocolate and roasty flavors. It starts to take a turn for the worse in the finish though. I'm getting a very harsh herbal, burnt, coffee, dry, bitterness in it. It's almost like a burnt hoppiness that is extremely dry. It leaves a herbal smoke like flavor on the palate. Not pleasant at all and not at all what I was expecting from this beer.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied at best and carbonation is moderate. Drinkability isn't good for me, I really didn't think the flavors meshed well and it left a harsh, burnt, chocolate, hop flavor in the finish that I didn't enjoy. It feels like I just smoked a cigar after drinking it.

 1,051 characters

Photo of vette2006c5r
4.09/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 2.5

Storm King poured black wth a very little dark tan head. It smelt very malty and aot of coffee flavors. It had a very harsh and strong flavor full of coffee flavos and a very strong malty flavor. Very powerfull and very strong. Overall very good beer must have an aquired tasted for a stout like this one.

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Photo of ChrisPro
3.88/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Transcribed from old rating now that this is part of top 100.

Storm King was the first Imperial Stout I had some years back so it has some nostalgia for me, but the rating below is from a big blind imperial stout tasting.

Tasted blind with 14 others that day.

Pours dark brown with a cream head and great lacing.

Aroma of mild pine hops and dark roasted nuts.

Sweet up front with a little bitter that works as a nice balance.

Medium body and fizze with a dry bitter coffee finish.

To this day, this is still a fantastic brew and a classic example of the style.

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Photo of nickd717
4.02/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Transcribing earlier review now that this is on the Top 100.

This is a good RIS from my real home state, PA. Almost jet black with small tan head.

Nice aroma of coffee, sweet malt, and hops.

Flavor is complex: lots of hops, sweet malt, coffee, chocolate, and something else I can't quite put my finger on.

Palate is smooth, maybe a little on the watery side if I'm going to nitpick.

A solid beer, different from most in its style. Very drinkable for a RIS.

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Photo of Yoonisaykul
4.3/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle was staring at me from the other side of the isle at Winooski Bev Warehouse. Comanded me to pick it up.

Now eager to drink it.
Served in small tulip

A- Nice looking beer. Great big brown head, cascaded beautifully down to a thin layer. The rest is black and if you look hard enough you can find some brown in the edges.

S- A nice hoppiness is what I first got but got quickly replaced by chocolate, a little bit of coffee and alcohol. Some milkiness to it all too.

T- Whoa this is deep. Very roasty coffe and cocoa. Almost like burnt sourdough rye bread. Ends with some green and grapefruit hops which fits in nicely. Quality whole grain bread after-taste. Reminds of a few smoked beers. As you get used to it, the hops come more and more out which is okay for me right now because I'm kind of in an IPA mood.

M- Thick liquid but not that big a mouthfeel. Very low carbonation.

D- Very good. Very satisfying, very tasty. A six-pack is a bad (9.10%) but possible idea. An easy to drink Imperial stout which still packs a whole lot of substance. What more could you want?

I might buy it again. There's just so many other delicious looking stouts. I really recommend it though.

 1,191 characters

Photo of silentjay
4.1/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a bit of a motor oil pour produces a two-fingered tan head that slowly settles to a small film and leaves spotty lacing on the glass.

aroma is of roasted malts: cocoa powder, chocolate, caramel, dark coffee, and a tad bit of smoke. piney and earthy hops also make themselves known rather strongly.

taste is dominated by the heavily roasted malts producing a palate heavy in cocoa powder, bitter baker's chocolate, dark roasted unsweetened coffee and some burnt toast. Hops are surprisingly strong and bring some pine and earthy bitterness that adds complexity and some American flavor.

medium bodied and possibly a bit thinner than I expected with just the right amount of carbonation. finishes dry and bitter.

drinks very well. booze is well integrated and not apparent for such a strong brew. interplay between the hops and malt keep me thirsting for the next delicious sip.

low price, readily available, tasty brew. One that I don't purchase nearly enough. Good enough to be rated among the best non-barrel-aged Imperial Stouts.

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Photo of dbossman
3.98/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Black and thick with a dense, dark brown head that holds its retention quite well; lacing is pretty decent

S: Dark roasted malts; coffee beans, chocolate and vanilla with a trace of caramel and raisins; all balanced with a nice piney hop presence

T: Not quite as complex as the aroma would indicate but still rich roasted malts with vanilla and chocolate undertones shine through; quite dry and a bit hoppy

F: Dry and yet oddly creamy; good viscous and chewy quality

D: The extremity of the richness makes this a sipper and the 12 oz is plenty; still quite the accessible, strong stout

 592 characters

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 Rhettbuck
4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've wanted this beer for awhile now, and I was a little bummed out when I actually got the chance to try it. Still a good stout, but I've had better and regularly have access to better stouts. Oh well!

Appearance: Pours really dark, like motor-oil, a slight caramel colored head is left on the top of the beer, but it doesn't last for very long and there is almost no lacing left behind

Smell: Maybe I just love smelling beers, but this beer smells great! You can tell its going to have strong caramel and chocolate tones when you're sniffing the bottle

Taste: Again, this was the let down for me, despite the amazing smell of the beer the actual taste is kind of boring? Don't get me wrong you get the caramel and chocolate but its lacking, like the flavor went flat

Mouthfeel: Like most stouts the amount of carbonation was low, not very viscous,

Drinkability: Good, though really for the money you'd drop on this beer you'd be better off just tracking down something better, but if this was your choice at a liquor store, then yeah pick-up a six pack of it, its head and tails above a Guinness

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Photo of Agold
3.66/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This beer is very very dark, and has about 2 fingers of brown head. The head dissipated and left little lacing. The alcohol is evident in the nose along with caramel. This beer has notes of toffee, caramel, roasted malt, and hop bitterness. The mouthfeel is a little on the light side, but the carbonation is at a nice level. Surprisingly good drinkability for a 9.1 RIS. Overall a very good beer, although it is not the best RIS I have had.

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Photo of wspscott
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle in Duvel tulip
best by sept 10 2114

A: A normal pour yields a huge head that almost overflowed the glass, easily 4 fingers. The color of the head reminds me of chocolate milk, as it drops it leaves some lace, but not as much as I would have expected. The beer itself is completely black as would be expected for the style.
S: Lots of roasted malts and a little bit of chocolate and then a huge amount of hops underneath it all.
T: The roasted malts are fighting with the hops for dominance. A very interesting beer, very bitter, but it is difficult to tell where the bitter comes from. There seems to be some chocolate malts here along with some black patent malt, but the roasted malt is front and center. A little bit of sweetness along with some dried cherries and then the hops keeping everything else on its toes. A little bit of alcohol warmth.
M: Very tongue coating, slightly drying/astringent, on the high side of carbonation for the style, but not uncomfortable.
D: This is a great sipping beer, but part of me wants to suck it down and open another one. That's a good thing :) A great American twist on a RIS, the over-the-top hops are a great combination with the malts. I am very glad I have most of a case left in my basement, looking forward to seeing how this changes over the next couple of years. Highly recommended.

 1,350 characters

Photo of Nibbley
4.15/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours black like used motor oil with a chocolate milk colored head that fades quickly and leaves little lacing.

Aroma is dark ripe fruit and burnt bagel and buttered dark wheat toast with little earthy hops.

Mouthfeel is really big,juicy,and velvety smooth.

Taste is more dark fruity goodness,maybe dark ripe cherries and raisin/date sweetness with a little of the hops and a big warming alcohol finish.

Really good example of a Russian Imperial Stout.

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Photo of Bonis
3.85/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sept 2011 - I'm changing my scores and editing this because I have basically become a hop head and I enjoyed this beer much more than I remember.

Appearance - Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Pours a blackish color like most other imperial stouts. A two finger light tan head is there off of the pour, but dissipates quickly and leaves very minimal lacing.

Nose - Heavy roasted malts and a some chocolate/coffee malt mixed in. A nice dose of hops make their way in to balance things out. Alcohol is apparent.

Taste - Very hoppy for an imperial stout (Ah, I now appreciate this). I taste the normal qualities of an R.I.S. with some roasted malts and chocolate flavors with a nice balance of hoppiness. Better than I recall overall. Pleasantly nice, but not nearly as good as some other imperial stouts.

Mouthfeel - Unexpectedly low bodied and smooth considering the amount of flavor and alcohol. Hop bitterness sits on the tongue.

Overall - A nice beer that I never appreciated in the past. Not awesome for an imperial stout, but definitely a great value.

 1,073 characters

Photo of Sudsy89
3.93/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is the first Imperial Stout I've tried, and it's pretty impressive. Beautiful black color, and pours with a big foamy brown head (actually overflowed from the 23oz. pilsner glass!). Smell is mostly roasted malt and hops, a slight burntness. You can taste the alcohol in it, but it's not overpowering, mostly the same flavor as the smell. Not as sweet as I expected, has more of a dry, bitter finish. Still I find it great for a sipping beer, I'd probably have two but not more because of the high ABV content.
Definitely would like to try this one again.

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Photo of hu5om
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz poured into delirium tulip.
a- black, jet black. khaki fluffy head that leaves a pretty lacing.
s- dark malts with bitter chocolate
t- bittersweet chocolate, not the biggest stout, but nicely proportioned. a bit milky, a hint of tobacco, caramel, almost a light burnt flavor on the aftertaste. as it warms, it sweetens, friggin gorgeous.
m- creamy yet a bit viscous, smoother than this abv should be.
d- scrumtrulescent. it's not an elite, elite imp. stout, but it's very, very good. maybe they should beef it up a bit and throw it in some bourbon barrels for a year? like i should really critique something i enjoyed this much? i love me some stouts and this one was excellent.

 684 characters

Photo of Pittsburgh
4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Virtually no foam on the pour, very dark, jet black, very intense beer, some hop flavor, but very strong coffee flavor to go with it. Bottle says drink by 2015 so I think I am a little early.

Tastes like coffee with alcohol in it. Can't really taste the ABV. One of the more intense stouts I have had, very potent. Leaves you with a strong aftertaste as well. Not as thick as some of the other stouts though.

Solid beer, coffee flavor sort of dominates and takes away from some complexities or flavors that may be present, but still good.

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Photo of aahynick
4.15/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

about 60 degree F into a brandy snifter
A- Opaque black with a thick creamy head

S- intense spicy hop and caramel

T- burnt roasted malt with intense bitterness

M- smooth and heavy with slight acidity

D- the hops and bitterness make this a true sipper. Though I like this one I definitely like the IS with less hop character and stronger molasses and caramel flavors. It;s an iffy in the repurchase.

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Photo of deadliest
4.47/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Dense espresso color with a quickly dissipating tan head. Not as oily as expected.

S: Surprisingly hoppy nose. Roasted coffee beans and dark chocolate.

T: Very hoppy for an RIS. The citrusy hops blend well with the heavier coffee, chocolate and burnt malts.

M/D: Mouthfeel is full, but without the oily feel of other RIS. Not overly heavy. Surprisingly drinkable for an imperial stout.

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Photo of elliot23
3.48/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A. Nice and dark... as a stout should be. Very little head, but a nice light mocha in color, dissipates quickly.

N. Roasted malts. Some nice chocolate, possibly milk. A little bit of coffee bean in there. A slightly bitter nose with a few other notes I am unable to identify.

T. Bittersweet chocolate as well as a burned and bitter malt taste. A touch of pine in there towards the end... maybe something citrus, interesting. Finally a long and bitter finish, a hop forward RIS... unique.

M. Smooth and creamy. Very light carbonation and fitting for the style.

D. Though, the alcohol is not really noticed, this is still a slow sipper and not something that I would drink more than one of. 12 oz is plenty for this bottle.

 725 characters

Photo of Stigs
3.86/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, best of date Nov. 2014...served in a standard pint glas

A - pours with over an inch of very frothy, pillowy dark khaki colored foam. the beer is very dark and black, just the faintest levels of amber hues held when help up to a bright light.

S - dark roasted malts, slightly mineraly...some medium roast coffee, vanilla...a bit tame.

T - begins with a heavy toasted, slightly burnt layer of malts...with some some char and ash. mellows out a bit with dark chocolate, vanilla, slightly nutty. finishes with a big, big earthy hop bite. this one is in between the raw, fresh hops and more subdued.

M - body is lacking a little bit, exposed by some sharp tight carbonation. finishes with some lingering pine, earthy hops and a light layer of burnt malts.

D - its decent fresh, and with a little bit of age...keep meaning to hold onto a bottle for a couple years to see if it settles a bit. has potential.

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Photo of Ryan011235
3.65/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter on 12/22/09; cellar temperature

Very dark, scorched brown settles to black. Impenetrable, even when held to the light. Poured a billowy two finger dark tan head. Good retention & lace for a while. Thin retention throughout; nice swaths of lace.

The nose seems a bit muted due to the quantity of foam, but it's still reasonably potent & smells enticing. All things considered there is an intense aroma of roasted malts: chocolate, touch of cocoa, toffee & dark sugars. Hints of figs & nuts. Wisps of smoke. Faint earthy notes & a mild booziness. Burnt/charred undertones. Notions of citric hops.

Bittersweet chocolate upfront with the particular kind of bitterness only a spot of coffee or espresso can provide. Hoppy bite around the edges; maximizing the bitterness of the beer without being overbearing. While these three flavors are dominant hints of roasted/burnt malts & dark bread are also to be had. Not particularly complex.

Full bodied with smooth & creamy carbonation. Some alcohol heat is apparent, especially for the first few sips. Nice grittiness. Roasted malts & bitter coffee linger.

This is a pretty solid sipper. The nose suggests much more complexity than the taste is able to muster. Even still, it's tasty. I suppose I shouldn't complain too much.

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Photo of jporf911
4.48/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- 5 out of 5. This stuff looks great; it's like peering through a mocha-curtain into the blackest night, as if the sun itself had been washed away by a thick tide of dark, mysterious beer many years ago. The beer pours with an deep brown ocean of three-finger head that is retained throughout the entire drinking experience, and the lacing is so thick and sticky that it practically coats the glass even once the beer itself is long gone.

Smell- 4.5 out of 5. This beer smells as powerful as it looks. A smell of burnt sweet molasses malt, charcoal, strong hops, and moderate citrus dominate the nose, along with an undertone of solvent alcohol. It's interesting; very interesting.

Taste- 4.5 out of 5. This beer taste even more powerful than it smells! The only thing holding it back from being a 5 is that it doesn't taste much like a Stout at all. All of the component tastes are there, but they come together to form something entirely different-- and delicious. The sweet malt strikes the tongue first, quickly followed by dark roasted malt, chocolate, and more citrus than I've ever tasted in a Stout. It almost reminds me of one of those chocolate oranges. Not bad, but unusual. There is an undertone of pine and other earthy, notes that are soon replaced by the bitterness of the slightly spicy hops at the end. The aftertaste of unsweetened chocolate and sweet roasted malt is thick and sticks around, much like the lacing. If you're numbed by the sheer number of flavors I've mentioned, your tongue won't be; instead, it will revel in it like skinny-dipping in the midnight sky.

Mouthfeel- 4 out of 5. The feisty carbonation wars with the thick, full body of the beer. Not as crisp as Guinness and not as creamy as Samuel Smith's Oatmeal Stout, it bridges a pleasant middle ground but offers a sharper alcohol sting than the other two.

Drinkability- 4.5 out of 5. This is a mysteriously brooding, immaculately complicated beer that is supremely drinkable considering its full body and 9.1% ABV. I could easily make a session out of this. Stout lovers be warned: this isn't traditional, but it is exceptional. Definitely a Victory in more ways than one.

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Photo of djmichaelk
3.71/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle courtesy of Bucwild (thanks Dave!), into a perfect pint.

A - Very dark brown, with reddish edges. Three fingers of mocha head, receding to a solid cap after a minute or so. Pretty good legs emerging after a quick swirl. Very nice looking beer.

S - Hmmm. Very sweet aromas coming from this brew. Dark roast coupled with dark chocolate, raisins, and burnt sugar. Maybe some toffee at the end. If I didn't know any better, I'd think it was a blend of a RIS and a quad.

T - Very sweet tasting, with plenty of chocolate cake and brown sugar up front, some dark roasted malt in the midpalate, and finishing with more chocolate and a slight nuttiness. Alcohol is noticeable but somewhat welcome.

M - Not quite as thick as I'd expect for the style. Carbonation is not very refined, and fights against the thickness of the beer. Large bubbles make it dance, but this is not what I necessarily want in a RIS.

D - The abv is definitely there -- I'm feeling it a bit after the one. The taste is nice, but I can see where the sweetness could maybe get to me after a couple. I like the alcohol burn, but it's probably not for everyone.

O - This is a very nice beer -- especially for the price. While it has its faults, I wish I had this readily available to me. I look forward to living on the east coast in the future and being able to find it.

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Photo of thecarster1
4.2/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a- bottle poured into a snifter, pours very thick and syrupy, half inch of tan head, deep dark black color, nice layer of head remains for the duration.

s- chocolate, roast, coffee, no real alcohol scent, some dry biscuit, sweet caramelized, well, caramel.

t- really nice, lots of roast, coffee, slight vanilla, slight bourbon edge, some sweetness - like burnt candied sugar, some belly and throat warmth, finishes dry and bitter. the alcohol shows up a bit as it warms just to show this bad boy's strength.

m- full bodied, coating, syrupy.

d- this goes down easily, but at 9.1% it may hinder sessioning a bit. this is my first ris and a great one at that - i think haha. i would drink this again for sure. another victory for victory.

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Storm King Stout from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
4.1 out of 5 based on 5,906 ratings.
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