Storm King Stout | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

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Storm King StoutStorm King Stout
BA SCORE
4.05/5
Exceptional
5,967 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:
#2,753
Reviews:
2,657
Ratings:
5,967
pDev:
11.85%
Bros Score:
3.8
 
 
Wants:
225
Gots:
937
Trade:
12
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 5,967 |  Reviews: 2,657
Photo of billab914
3.08/5  rDev -24%
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 Rifugium
3.94/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: ? (various)

Pours an opaque black-brown with a nice-sized tan head that retains and laces well. Roasted malt aroma, coffee and cocoa, some dark fruits and hints of citrusy hops. Nice full-bodied taste, nothing you haven't had in a stout before, aside from probably more hops than you're generally used to from the style. Dark roasty malts, coffee, dark chocolate, licorice, and brown sugar, with notes of citrus and floral hops. Modestly complex, tasty, and very drinkable.

 485 characters

Photo of ygtbsm94
4/5  rDev -1.2%

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

On cask, via hand pump, @ the Victory Brewing Company (Downingtown, PA) on 1/15/11. Served in a pint glass.

Pours a straight black in the glass, with a finger of tight foamy mocha colored head. This retains with about a ¼ finger of creamy froth, which holds tight across the top and drenches the sides of the glass with a solid sheet of lacing the whole way down. The aroma smells burnt with a roasted coffee nose on it, along with some green citrus character. There are sweet notes of chocolate and caramel present, which feels like they want to sit in the nostrils with some stickiness but the overall sharpness of the roast and hops keeps thing crisp and tight in the nose.

The taste is roasted and bitter across the tongue with a forceful mix of coffee and citric hop flavors. A balancing mix of chocolate and caramel malts help balance this out across the back but the cask really brings the aggressiveness of this out, as this finishes burnt and roasty with some lingering green bitterness. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied, with the cask lending this some lightness that is equal parts crisp and creamy in the mouth. The alcohol his mostly well hid here, with no hot flavors per se, but it does contribute to the overall intensity of the flavors and feel.

Wow, the cask conditioning really opens this sucker up, so that you get the full Storm King experience. Whether your ready for it or not! The roasted malts and hops are just in full effect here, to the point that they get to be a bit much towards the bottom of the glass. Yeah, this ones a bit of a rager but still damn tasty if you like aggressive beers and that cask body does help smooth things out a bit. I'm glad this one is always on the cask at the brewery, because sometimes you just need a beer like this.

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Photo of paulish
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of Gkruszewski
4.68/5  rDev +15.6%

Photo of atrocity
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%

Photo of smcolw
3.98/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Impressive tall beige head; leaves nice chunky lace on the glass. The color of the brew is near black. No light shines through.

Lots of black patent malt aroma--bitter mocha.

Strong coffee bitterness, as if there was no milk nor sugar added. The alcohol level is notable but not dominating. Very dry. Compared to most stouts, this one is thin. Great dark chocolate aftertaste.

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Photo of ZEB89
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of russpowell
4.27/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours mahogany/black with a fluffy 4 fingers+ mocha colored head. Good lacing & head retention

s: Huge chocolate notes & roasted grain, then hints of booze as it warms. Hints of oakyness follows

T: Huge rich toasted malt & chocolate up front. Dryness & hints of oak show up as this warms& vanilla as well. Finished dry, oaky & loads of alcohol & bitter chocolate

MF: A little oily & heavy bodied, slightly over carbonated. a minor kvetch i suppose

Will try this later in the fall/year, but his was a little too heavy for me on the last nice day we'll have here in CO until April... at $11.50 a sixer, over priced. I'm sure this is a little more reasonable back east

 670 characters

Photo of XmnwildX12
3.25/5  rDev -19.8%

Photo of mendvicdog
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of woodychandler
4.72/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This arrived with a thick, medium-tan head with almost nitrogen-pour qualities. It had a rich, chocolate nose with lightly smoky notes. The color was really dark, almost cola/carmel colored. The mouthfeel had a better-than thin but less-than-full quality. Lots of dark chocolate and a little charcoal flavor in the mouth. Finish was rich, slightly smoky and redolent with chocolate. Pass me the brownies.

A re-review following GEN Sutter Cask Night on F, 24 Apr 2009:

Gee, I thought that I had not had this from a cask before, but my reviews prove me wrong. Whoops!

Coming off of a gravity pour, it had a deep-tan/light-brown soapy head with mild retention. The nose had dark chocolate, raisins, plums, coffee, and tobacco. The color was a deep, dark, impenetrable black. The mouthfeel was slick and oily, although a little thin in its density. The immediate taste was of smoking a maduro cigar on the fantail of the Self-Defense Test Ship (SDTS) in 1995, following evening chow, so a cup of mess decks coffee would have been a natural accompaniment. Ah, the memories ... The finish had a slight heat that gave 'way to a lingering smoky flavor.

I'll be frank here, and earnest, too. RIS just is not my preferred style. This was a terrific iteration, but I simply do not get the charge from it that others seem to. Call it the "Blind Man at the Movies Syndrome". I am missing out on something that everyone else is enjoying. Brooklyn 1 and I have a like relationship, although Garrett Oliver has exonerated me, telling me that he is the only person who has to like his beers. Ha!

 1,582 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.62/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Inky black perfection. Average head forms, even when poured rather roughly (upwards of 18 in. above the glass) which quickly dissipates, though it's understandable given the style and ABV.

Smell: Predominately dark roasted malts smelling of fine dark chocolate. Hops are... floral, coupled with an aroma of roasted almonds and with a stark alcohol fragrance lingering behind.

Taste: A brash beverage, very asserting in all its flavors: dark chocolate, coffee, floral hops. Some molasses and tobacco (although, I think I'm going to be the only one proclaiming "tobacco!" on this one). This is not a stout that relies on a charming sweetness, instead opting for more "floral" components with a playful combination of mint, licorice, and I still contest there's tobacco in there! Why won't anyone listen to me?!

Mouthfeel: Pleasantly full, without ever being painfully thick or obnoxiously syrupy. Carbonation is spot on for my tastes. The alcohol is not overly assertive, but instead is rather relaxing. Is it just me, or does anyone else feel like they've just come out of a two-hour college lecture after drinking one of these? Yawn!

Drinkability: The Storm King is a lot like life. One minute it's there, and the nex

.

Huh.

Well, in trying to fully and completely analyze it, I seem to have exhausted my modest supply of 12 fluid ounces. Drinkability seemed good; I've had other heavier, denser stouts that I've easily gulped down without a second thought.

*Thanks to AndoBrew, my friend, for generously sharing this one with me.*

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Photo of mdaschaf
4.06/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass

A: Pours very black with a large tan colored head. Very nice staying power, slow dissipation to a ring of foam on the top. Beautiful sheets of lacing down the sides. Looks amazing.

S:Get a slight hop kick up front which gives way to some roasted grain. I also get a little chocolate and a slight hint of the alcohol.

T: Lots of roasted flavor up front. This transitions to some chocolate and molasses and finishes with a heavy hand of coffee flavor. There is a little bit of dark fruit in the middle somewhere as well. Has a bitter finish.

M/D: Very thick, but smooth. Overall very enjoyable. THe abv is not noticeable at all, and I like the hoppiness it has for an RIS. I like this one a lot.

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Photo of duceswild
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.75/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

For this, my 250th review, I decided that I needed to drink one of the Storm Kings that has been patiently waiting in my cellar for a while now. I have a six-pack that is 17 months old and one that is 7 months old and I'll be reviewing one of the younger ones since the hops should be more aggressive. Victory hasn't let me down yet and I don't expect that they will this time either. Bottled on November 18 '03.

Darker than dark. Obsidian with a mere glimmer of dark brown at the bottom edge when held up to a bright sunlit window. The head is quite large and is one of the darkest that I've ever seen. It's milk chocolate brown and is stiff and thick, like a good ice cream-heavy milkshake. It falls at a glacial pace and is leaving beautiful, intricate patterns of lace on the glass. This is, without a doubt, the hoppiest smelling stout that I've ever had the pleasure to sniff. It has an absolutely great nose of roasted black malt and dark chocolate, laced liberally with citrus zest. I usually prefer my porters/stouts to be malty with just a kiss of hops, but SK may change my mind forever.

Oh my God! This stuff is amazing. The taste and near milk shake-like body are winning me over from the very first mouthful. The flavor is of melted Hershey's chocolate bars mixed with semisweet chocolate, espresso (easily overpowered by the chocolate, thank goodness) and a hint of anise. Maybe a little molasses, but it's not as prominent as in some other Imperial stouts. And let's not forget those glorious hops, bright and citrusy, putting this beer into a whole 'nother league. My preconceived notion about keeping the hops out of my 'dark' beers has been forever laid to rest. Once a hophead, always a hophead.

The body is incredible as well. I'm forever whining (about nearly every beer that I drink) that brewers don't give enough attention to the body/mouthfeel, that they don't make it full enough. No complaints here, Storm King has one of the biggest, thickest, creamiest bodies that I've ever experienced. Among porters/stouts, only Perkuno's Hammer, if my memory is to be trusted, has it beat. One minor problem--that could probably qualify as nitpicking--is that it feels ever so slightly chalky, which keeps it from achieving a true heavy cream silkiness.

Don't ask me why it took me more than 6 months to crack one of these open. Victory Storm King Stout is one of the biggest, baddest beers that I've ever had and is truly one of the very best.

 2,473 characters

Photo of drewone
3.85/5  rDev -4.9%

Photo of Jason
3.18/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

12 oz brown bottle with a bottled on date of Dec 13th 05.

A- Dark leather brown, nearly pitch black. Three fingers of froth after a hard poruing, dissapates to a thin tan lace with some retention.

S- Mild solvent alcohol, hint of blackberry and a water charcoal note in the back.

T&M- Smooth and creamy, great mouth feel. Touch of fusel alcohol, muted fruitiness is lost within the alcohol character. Kiss of oily hops in the middle. Boarderline astrigent burnt flavor with a modest malt sweetness undetneath. Middle to end are waves of harsh burnt malt and faint alcohol.

D- Not as pleasing as it used to be, pretty damn harsh and not as complex either. I'll have to make some strong black and tans to go through the rest of the six-pack.

*** OLD REVIEW *** 09/10/2001

Presentation: 12 oz brown longneck bottle, no freshness date but this beer's strength alone gives it a very long shelf life.

Appearance: Pitch black liquid with a slow motion cascading effect after a hard pouring, the hard pouring yielded a dense and rocky light tan head that faded away as fast as a glacier moves.

Smell: Fresh hop leaf similar to tobacco cigar leaves with a bitter hop oil within, black currants and fresh ground espresso in the aroma also. A very mild rummy alcohol smell is noticeable, smells of chocolate cover rum soaked cherries.

Taste: Thick and creamy with a full and flexed body, smooth with minimal carbonation from the hard pouring ... even with a normal pouring there probably would be, at most, a moderate carbonation level. Roasted bitterness flavour draws long as well as the demanding hop character. Heavy hand of sweetness from front to middle with sweetened espresso and a black berry fruitiness. Hops kick in hard and flail around flavours of citrus, earth and leaf ... as soon as it peaks the roasted gives a one two punch of charcoal and dark chocolate. Roasted flavours intensify in the finish with a hitchhiking hop bitterness that just won't let go. After taste is endless.

Notes: This one goes down as one of the greatest, not just one of the greatest Imperial Stouts but as one of the greatest beers in the world. As close to perfection as you can get.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.68/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From 10/26/10 notes. Had on tap at the Dupont Paradiso in DC.

a - Pours a black color with one inch of tan head and light carbonation evident. Looks amazing.

s - Smells of coffee, roasted malts, and light sweet chocolate. Also some hops in the smell. Pretty enjoyable.

t - Tastes of bitter chocolate, hops, coffee toasted malts, and roasted malts. Hints of alcohol. Pretty good but a small step down from the smell in my opinion.

m - Medium to full body and moderate to high cabonation. Body is pretty creamy. Wish it was a little less carbonated.

d - This is a pretty good RIS, but not one of my favorites. I would have liked more sweet chocolate in the taste and less alcohol, as well as less carbonation. I would definitely give it another shot, but this wouldn't be a "go to" beer for me if I see it on the menu.

 821 characters

Photo of Zaphog
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of atlbravsrno1
3.75/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.53/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a CBS snifter. Best by 11/22/2016.

Appearance - Pours a dark brown with a significant khaki head. Good retention and lacing, but it is quite light for a stout.

Smell - Hops galore. The hops cover up most of the stout. A fair bit of coffee emerges behind. The hops come off as rather vegetal.

Taste - The taste is extremely hoppy, but markedly better than the nose. Not as vegetal. Still hoppy, but more chocolate and coffee come through. Not much of the boozy comes through.

Mouthfeel - Thin. Quite thin. Not boozy, but exceedingly bitter. The aftertaste is hops, not stout.

Overall - It's not bad, but it's so aggressively hopped that it's lost. More stout, please.

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Photo of BEER88
3.6/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Photo of mikesgroove
4.35/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured thick black with no light going through. Small tan head that lingered throughout. Smell was roasted caramel and a slight coffee hint to it. The taste followed suit. Nice Roasted coffee like taste, very full bodied and thick, almost a meal. Perfect for desert. Slight hoppy finish with a bite! Excellent stout, yummy and full of flavor. Will definatly turn to this again!

 377 characters

Storm King Stout from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Beer rating: 4.05 out of 5 with 5,967 ratings
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