Storm King Stout | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

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BA SCORE
92
outstanding
2,616 Reviews
Storm King StoutStorm King Stout
BEER INFO

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

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
Reviews:
2,616
Ratings:
5,816
Avg:
4.1
pDev:
17.56%
 
 
Wants:
216
Gots:
881
For Trade:
14
User Reviews
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Reviews: 2,616 | Ratings: 5,816
Photo of justintcoons
2.42/5  rDev -41%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a snifter.

A: Pours black with a short tan head that quickly fades. I can almost see some red highlights.

N: Fruity Pebbles, root beer, boozy esters, milk chocolate and black coffee.

T: Bakers chocolate, wet toffee and Fruity Pebbles upfront. Mid-palate shows old coffee with sugar, musty book and a faint suggestion of dark fruit. Finish is like eating a block of bitter bakers chocolate compressed with charcoal. Boozy esters linger.

M: Medium-full bodied, creamy, chewy, sticky and dry.

O: Not a very pleasant RIS. Overall tastes of bitter bakers chocolate and stale coffee. Also has a strange mustiness. Booze is apparent.

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Photo of Ranbot
2.43/5  rDev -40.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured into a glass from a 12 oz bottle. Very dark and readily makes a dark thick head. I wasn't paying attention and poured a little too fast and had to let the head settle for a long time - good retention. You can clearly smell the hops and roasted malts. When I got around to drinking it the initial flavor was all hops followed by burnt coffee that lingered long after swallowing. Only a faint hint of the alcohol, but it's not surprising given how overwhelming the hops and burnt coffee is. I wish I could say I tasted something else in this brew, but I really didn't. There's little to no balance in it. It's sort of cross between a DIPA and stout/RIS, but I think fails at both, because the hops are really strong for a stout/RIS, and the malts aren't sweet enough to underpin hops like a good DIPA. Unrepenting hopheads will probably enjoy it, but I could not.

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Photo of TrevorGW
2.44/5  rDev -40.5%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Black body. Typical imperial stout with the paper thin, tan-colored head that leaves a few laces here and there.

Aroma was of pungent bleu cheese. Heavy funk that was very off-putting.

Taste was big on the warm alcohol, with the roast and chocolate holding their own. The bleu funkiness was only mildly detectable on the tongue, but the aroma spoils at the start and finish of each sip.

Chewy mouthfeel, not very creamy.

Probably the 6th or 7th imperial stout that I have tried and unfortunately the worst. It may have been a damaged bottle, but I won't be ordering this again any time soon.

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Photo of Strawbs
2.45/5  rDev -40.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

My first BA review will be a short one. I love thick full bodied beers. Bell's Exhibition Stout, Paulaner Salvator & Founder's Breakfast Stout come to mind. But this one is just far too bitter too be enjoyed. A want to support my local brewery, but looks like I'll have to stick to Victory's Old Horizontal.

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Photo of robwestcott
2.46/5  rDev -40%
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 DefenCorps
2.49/5  rDev -39.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 1.5

12oz bottle best by Nov 16 2012, which would mean this is a little less than a year old. Into my snifter

A: Pours an inky black with a dark brown head that recedes fairly quickly to a wispy disk.

S: This smells nothing like the bottle and draft versions i had last winter (earlier vintages). This smells hot, solventy, sweet and a hint of the dreaded burnt tire aroma a la Mikkeller Black. Pretty disgusting, yeah. There's some chocolate but it isn't enough to mask this

T: Starts off with heavily burnt and roasted flavors with a ton of dark chocolate. Some fusels are present which really ruin things. Finish is long, bitter and burnt.

M: Rather full bodied, which is what i was hoping for, and the carbonation is light enough but god, this tastes nasty

D: Nope. Down the drain

Notes: When I did an RIS tasting in March, the 06 vintage finished 2nd or 3rd in a field of 9 commonly available RISs. This bottle would have finished dead last

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Photo of adammills
2.5/5  rDev -39%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I poured this beer into a brandy snifter at cellar temperature. Very dark brown to black with a large brown head that persists. This beers nose is underwhelming. Some roast, slight burnt coffee, some boozy hints (anise?). Big roast up front of the palate, with some chocolate and what appears to me to be a substantial hop bittering backbone. Some warming alcohol and a touch of anise again. The bitterness lasts well into the finish. This beer leaves me wishing it had a more substantial mouthfeel, more creamy, with a touch more residual sweetness. Perhaps that will come thru with some age as the bittering drops.

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Photo of beercam
2.54/5  rDev -38%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.25

Ouch, a very harsh beer. There are remnants of something big here, a overlooked work of high art, a great dream... but no more than remnants.

It begins with the visual claim to and bold evocation of the form of the imperial stout. Perhaps ,to some, the imperial stout is unsurpassable, known as a grand effort and gesture in brewing, the longest throw. Storm King's owl icon art paired with the Victory Brand label deliver a formidable nod in this deep, dark beer tradition and aesthetic, one shared and partaken of by many, as evidenced by the thousands of hads on this drink. This beer is opaque, dark, black. It fills any drinkware quickly, and like oil. At pour, a 3 inch, tense, dense, slow boil of foam appears, tan-brown and perpetually lingering. Smell-wise, there is much promise here. Familiar, metallic, astringent aromas bound forth, heavy hops and malt, very complex and balanced, leaning here towards Russian Imperial style in figgy, oaky, vanilla smokiness yet still aggressively hoppy. Taste is where it all goes down for me in this Pennsylvania beer, and not necessarily in a good way. The flavor, if you will, comes on very well, very strong, porter-esque and buildling, and then just kind of flops. Pine, hops, malt, and brazen, syrupy, molassesy, yeasty, worty tastes take center-stage here. Unfortunately, despite summoning all of these exciting notes, what came next to tongue and mind was a seriously unpleasant, out-of-control black pepper, and way over-roasted malt. Now, again, I like the olefactory elements of this beer, which pulled the taste up from a serious 0 to a 1.5, but where the smell promises, the taste under-performs. The alcohol scrambles and overwhelms to compensate and fails. The taste itself brings nothing to enjoy for me over the course of one of these 12 oz'ers. The flat, thin, sourness both introduces and gives way to a slick, pulpy, rind-y mouthfeel, with a bit of an elmer's glue problem of an after-presence.

Speaking of bottles, considering the notably low carbonation of this beer, I thought if poured into a nice new can-glass (maybe foolish), maybe it would mellow out towards something like a nitro feel? Nah, it just went flat :(.

By now you may have gathered that I didn't love this beer, and after a 4-pack, I didn't really have any beatific experiences to relate from or while drinking it. But look, just because I don't love it, doesn't mean I hate it. In fact I even like it, because I like all beer, but in this review's frame, I would not considerate to be among the pleasurably drinkable strong beers. Overall, this is not really a recommendable imperial stout, by me, at this point in time. Maybe tweak this one, Victory? Thanks for reading, and keep on, fellow stout/imperial stout lovers!

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Photo of drone
2.63/5  rDev -35.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Not a huge fan. Big burnt flavor, like overroasted coffee beans. The measly 9% comes out strong and leads to a very bitter, boozey, even hoppy after taste.

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Photo of yamar68
2.64/5  rDev -35.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

From 12oz to stange: Pours with minimal clarity and a loose, soft two finger mocha head. Nose showcases milk chocolate, cocoa, minimal booze, vanilla extract. Taste is burnt coffee - rough around the edges and a surprising hop bite. The feel is too thin, I wish the burnt coffee wouldn’t linger. Overall, decent for an inexpensive imperial stout but... meh...

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Photo of Vonhinx
2.64/5  rDev -35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I should start by saying that I am a fan of big malty beers and less fond of overhopping.

Sadly, this beer doesn't stay true to the RIS style or I would be giving it a much better review. This is more of a black IPA with a little extra ABV.

It poured into a standard mug nice and dark with about an inch of light brownhead that didnt last too long.

The smell was the first sign that things were going to be odd. Alcohol smell was expected at over 9 percent. The strong hop smell was a little surprising though. It overwhelmed any malts, which should be the main aroma with this type.

The taste matched the smell. Hops first, then alcohol, then the chocolate/coffee taste you would expect from this type, but hidden deep in the background. The flavor did improve as it warmed up, but not enough for me to ever buy it again.

Victory brewing is now 0 for 2 with me

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Photo of ClavisAurea
2.68/5  rDev -34.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle served in a pint glass.

Appearance: pourd black as night with a tan head

Smell: flowers and coffee

Taste: hops from hell, strong flowery flavor, bitter, like an old pot of coffee, full body

No doubt this is an imperial stout. Way too bitter to drink more than one at a time. Stout continues to be my weakest link.

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Photo of tcfishler
2.68/5  rDev -34.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Black with cocoa-brown highlights and a very good head for the ABV.

Deep, dark, roasted nose with liberal grassy/grapefruit hops.

Rich and very full, but a bit abrasive on the tongue. Alcohol is definitely noticeable - the flavor is simply not concentrated enough to cover it.

A hearty he-man brew, but too rough for my regular rotation. It's too bad, since I've loved every other Victory beer I've tried.

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Photo of PaleAleHater
2.69/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I sampled this brew on a cold New England evening. Paired it with a dill havarti cheese and artisan crackers. Notes of asphalt, gum base, and chocolate. Immeditely boozy and diacital. Hints of lavender and buckskin leather linger, unwanted. Its mouth feel is puzzling and thick, reminiscent of authentic Italian soda syrups but wrought with an overabundant hop presence.

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Photo of vkv822
2.69/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle into pint glass.

Pours a thick, frothy milk chocolate colored head that dissipates fairly quickly, with a black body.

The smell is of coffee with rich roasted malty notes, also fairly hoppy.

The flavor starts out with a surprising amount of hops, as in thr nose though it does start to smooth out with some chocolate and roasted malt notes towards the finish and a very light warming finish from the alcohol.

It has a very nice thick full bodied mouthfeel with a nice amount of carbonation.

Overall it is a pleasant beer, but the hops were a bit strong for my liking in a RIS.

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Photo of Finkel
2.69/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

It pours very nicely and is an attractive looking beer. The beer is onyx in color and is topped with a chunky, milk chocolate colored head. Lace surrounds the glace when swirled and retains nicely. Although I am not a stout guy myself, I have to admit that it looked very pretty.

The nose was much weaker than I thought it would be. Chocolate and toffee as well as a fair amount of hops were identifiable, but were not powering in any way.

The taste was a crescendo of flavor and grew progressively stronger as it went down. Hops were definitely noticeable as well as a burnt popcorn flavors at the end of each sip. The strong coffee aftertaste is gross to me, which is the reason why I'm a tea drinker.

The mouth feel was clearly thick, which is one characteristic of stouts that deters me from drinking them. Furthermore, I disliked that it was astringent - it made me feel slightly dehydrated.

Admittedly, I didn't finish the beer, which was only delight to my friend. My rating will definitely be skewed due to the fact that I'm not a fan of this style. However, if you're one that likes stouts, this is a very well composed beer and it might be the brew for you.

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Photo of divineaudio
2.69/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

from notes. served in a pint glass.

a - pours dark brown to black with a thick tan head.retention is good and leaves some sticky lace in the glass.

s - floral hop character with some grainy malt and a distinctive sweaty foot smell.

t - piney hop bitterness overpowering a roasted malt base. strong alcohol presence. ipa territory to my tastebuds.

m - full bodied with too much carbonation for my liking.

o - maybe i got a bad batch? i heard a lot of good things about this beer and it certainly didn't live up to the hype. probably won't buy this ever again.

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Photo of Arbitrator
2.7/5  rDev -34.1%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Chilled bottle into a glass. Courtesy of a trade with Uwftke26.

A: A brown-colored body that pours a pitch black in the glass. Has a huge, foamy tan cap that recedes into thick clumps on top of the brew, and leaves substantial lacing with register marks down the glass. Exquisite.

S: Chocolate, espresso, smoke, and rotting citrus. Yuck.

T: Starts off with huge espresso, smoke, and roasted malts. Remains mostly bitter, although the mid-taste sees a slight sweet contribution of dark chocolate. The finish is again smoky, with citrus hops rounding it out. Leads into a bitter espresso aftertaste. Wow, kind of a clashing taste.

M: Full-bodied. Slightly high carbonation that prickles the tongue a bit. Well hidden ABV.

D: Surprisingly hoppy for an imperial stout, and the hop variety isn't one that blends particularly well with the traditional RIS flavors. I could see this aging into a well-rounded stout in a year, after the hops fade a bit. But it's fairly harsh as a young brew, and the experience is not spectacular enough to make me seek it out again.

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Photo of crosamich
2.71/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

dark & roasted, VERY astringent. way too much high-roasted malts here for my taste. Rather than smooth, chocolately flavors from a balanced use of malts I had to choke this one down. Had this several times in the bottle and remember generous hops but that was missing here. drinkability was low due to acrid, dry, and harsh taste.

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Photo of aasher
2.73/5  rDev -33.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This beer looks fantastic. It poured a midnight black with a two finger dark khaki head that sat atop the beer like soap suds. The aromas are VERY subtle but I'm picking up some light chocolate to go along with the light coffee as well. The initial taste is pretty solid, like coffee with a chocolate creamer but I really don't like the after taste. It's like straight soap, almost bitter. Very sudsy and unappealing. It's also very thin for a RIS. This beer started great but went downhill from there. I wasn't impressed.

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Photo of beercar
2.73/5  rDev -33.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Got a fresh sixer. Smell is all hop and cocoa. Nice tan 1 finger head. Black as night...no light penetration. Taste is way too hoppy and dry IMO. This beer could definitely benefit from more cocoa and coffee. Light mouthfeel and overly carbonated. Imperial stouts are my favorite style, and there are too many better options out there to consider purchasing again. If hop forward stouts are your thing, look no further. Tasted side by side with Blackout Stout. Not even close.

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Photo of lechap
2.75/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Poured very flat with little head. Cut to the chase, I just don't enjoy these heavier/stronger stouts. It's not the higher ALC but an unpleasant aftertaste. I read that imperial stouts were originally exported to Russia. That may account for the rumors of Russian women being overly hairy and their success as weight lifters. I'll settle for a good dry Irish stout or oatmeal stout any day. They are just so smooth when compared to imperials. Kind of like filing your fingernails with a fine emery board rather than a wood rasp.

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Photo of otto251068
2.78/5  rDev -32.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Rochefort chalice. "Enjoy by Nov 08, 2015" printed on the bottle, making this bottle (according to my research) about six months old.

Appearance: A very dense, dark, chocolate brown head rises to about the width of a finger. It really takes it's time to fade, but once it does there are only a few blotches left. The beer itself is pitch black, and only a sliver of dark brown is detectable when held up to the light. A ring of foam clings to the inside of the glass.

Smell: A little surprised by the level of hops, the first thing I smelled when I cracked the top. Once I get beyond the them, there are the toasted malts. After the pour it really opens up, similar to what is mentioned before, only more aromatic and noticeable. The hops have a bit of grassy, outdoors, wheaty characteristics. A touch of sourness makes itself present.

Taste: Charred malts completely take over, really dominating the flavors from the start to finish. Once I get beyond them there is some dark, unsweetened chocolate, and some coffee bitterness. Some of the bitter, grassy hops eventually fight their way to the front.

Mouthfeel: Medium body with a high carbonation level. The body is pleasant, maybe just a touch on the thin side. The carbonation level becomes very foamy inside the mouth. A good bit of bitterness lingers after the swallow, really sticking to the back of my throat.

Overall: Heavy and harsh charcoal through out, from start to finish. This beer has a good aroma and looks great in a glass, but the burnt flavors are simply too overwhelming for me, although, it does completely hide the alcohol. A bit of a chore to finish this 12 oz bottle.

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Photo of SourHopHead
2.79/5  rDev -32%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A- Poured a deep brown, but mostly black with a tan head and good retention.

S- Chocolate, slight roasted smell. I didn't get any hop aroma at all.

T- Chocolate and roasty flavor. Finished dry.

M- Not much carbonation and tasted fairly thin.

D- A lot of flavors but chocolate and roast overpowered them all. Tasted on the thin side and I drank the 2 I had and I was done.

I expected more from Victory.

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Photo of Naugled
2.8/5  rDev -31.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Pours with a nice dark brown thick head and an opaque black body. Chunks of sediment came from the bottom of the bottle.

Smell is a bit vegetal up front sweet and hoppy second.

Flavor is very bitter and harsh, way too much, either a bad bottle or it needs to age and mellow, there was no date on the bottle to know for sure.
It's hard to get a good malt profile because the hop bitterness is so dominating.

Mouthfeel isn't bad but long aftertaste.

Not a very drinkable beer at this point. I may buy another and let it age. I'll update the review afterwards. But as is, not a good example of an imperial stout IMO.

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Storm King Stout from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
92 out of 100 based on 2,616 ratings.
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