Midnight Sun Brewing Co.

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Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
Alaska, United States
Stout - Russian Imperial
Ranked #320
Ranked #6,295
4.1 | pDev: 8.54%
Jun 29, 2021
Dec 31, 2011
Notes: First brewed as part of our 2011 World Tour series, MOSCOW Rye Russian Imperial Stout is a hefty, opaque black liquid that pours slowly and soulfully into your snifter. A high percentage of spicy rye and roasted dark malts create a dense, chewy yet elegant winter wonderland of flavors. And from AK we say: Let it Snow…in Moscow.
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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.24/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by StonedTrippin from Colorado

really awesome to encounter the 2017 vintage on tap, it has aged exceptionally well. its unique among russian imperial stouts in that it has a bunch of rye malt in it that really shows through, but its also quite classically styled behind that, is super nuanced and good, and is smooth as silk at this point, a pretty well hidden alcohol content, i really enjoyed this. its deep near black in color with a substantial dark mocha head on it and apparently more carbonation than is common in these. the nose shows just trace oxidation, but big earthy rye notes, black pepper and dry cocoa powder, licorice and black tea, and a dark roasted intensity in the espresso realm, awesome. the flavor is rye forward too, very cool with all the roast, this is bitter and deep there without really tasting smoked or burnt. i get some english type yeast, seemingly an oak profile too although i dont think this was barrel aged, and a curious lack of middle malt sweetness, this is drier than most all the way through, finishes fast for something this big. palate coating but not as heavy as many, complex but cohesive, and different enough to be memorable. this was easily my favorite of the three beers i had from these guys while i was up in alaska, its downright delicious. i hope to get the chance to visit the brewery next time!

Jun 29, 2021
Photo of SHODriver
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by SHODriver from North Carolina

Older bottle from 2012-2013ish

A: Poured into a snifter to a black beer topped by a dense and slightly rocky two fingers of dark tan head which retains very well while fading slowly to a collar around the edge of the glass with minimal lacing.
S: Smells of intense chocolate with some rye spice and coffee along with some roasted malts
T: Taste is roasted malts, bitter dark chocolate, charred wood, burnt sugars, and espresso. There are some hints of oxidation but it blends in well with the base beer. On the swallow there's some slight spice, more roasted malts, dark chocolate, coffee, and caramelized sugars with a hint of charred wood.
M: This beer is fairly full in body with a silky smooth feel on the palate. Carbonation is on the low end but it's adequate for the style while the beer has a drying finish.
O: Overall this is a great beer and a solid example of the style. It has good flavors and a nice complexity. The beer at this stage shows good balance of flavor as well instead of being dominated by one note. I'd like to revisit this one when it's fresh.

Aug 26, 2020
Photo of IKR
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
by IKR from California

Appearance: Black with a generous-sized foamy dark beige head that stuck around for a while. A very good looking Imperial Stout.

Smell: Roasted malts, and some bready notes. The nose is fairly mild but I've had this one cellared for a while.

Taste: The taste profile features roasted malt notes, and some rye spiciness. The finish dries out with the roast malts and spicy rye notes lingering to the end. The beer has a mild alcohol presence.

Mouth-feel: Medium bodied with a generous level of carbonation. The body is satisfying.

Overall: A tasty non bal-aged stout. I've had this one cellared for years and it has aged well. I'm not sure of the year but the label is mostly black and looks completely different from the photo here (maybe 2011 if I'm reading the bar label right?). I need to seek this one out fresh because this was good.

Jun 27, 2020
4.23 by jmbeerdude91 from Arizona on Feb 03, 2020
4.25 by NickThePyro from Washington on Jan 05, 2020
4.13 by Taphouse_Traveler from Florida on Aug 27, 2019
Photo of Oh_Dark_Star
4.19/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by Oh_Dark_Star from Washington

I usually prefer the American Imperial Stouts over the Russian like, but this really (really) grew on me as it was imbibed.

Apr 20, 2019
3.82 by Soneast from Wisconsin on Jun 04, 2018
4 by kylehay2004 from Illinois on May 13, 2018
4.23 by bigpoppa67 from Wisconsin on Mar 15, 2018
3.78 by Mikexw from New York on Oct 25, 2017
4.25 by teamwiggum from Wisconsin on Sep 15, 2017
Photo of EdwardAbbey
4.05/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
by EdwardAbbey from Washington

I like what the hefty portion of spicy rye brings to this, but I also regret what it takes away, because it ever-so-slightly overwhelms the rest. If you love rye and like big stouts, this could be right in your wheelhouse. But if you love big stouts and like rye, it might leave you a little disappointed, as it did with me.

Aug 25, 2017
3.59 by Nunya from Ohio on Jul 28, 2017
4.12 by Agentveba from North Carolina on Jul 08, 2017
Photo of Lone_Freighter
4.34/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by Lone_Freighter from Vermont

Reviewed from notes. The appearance that poured like jet fuel - pure black and slow like motor oil (could’ve sworn I heard the "glug, glug, glug" of the beer pouring out); small super tan/slightly brown colored slim looking head, light speckled all over the place lacing. The smell had a roasted cocoa with a spectacular dose of coffee aromas coming through, I believe I’m also getting some anise - ?? maybe. The taste had a roasty sweet and ever so slightly bitter cocoa/coffee flavoring with the anise just a tad stronger than before. There is some alcohol in the taste, but I realize I’m having a 11% beer from the growler 3 days after it was put into the growler; super sweet sticky aftertaste (holy coating of my lips, don’t think I’ve ever had any beer so sticky). It had somewhat of a dry sweet cocoa finish. On the palate, it sat about a medium to heavy, yup this beast is a sipper (don’t try to dominate this beer) in other words there’s no such word as sessionable for this beer. Carbonation is fairly smooth for an RIS - good for the style and for me. Overall, really nice RIS but I didn't get the suspected rye that was supposed to be in this.

Jun 30, 2017
3.79 by morrowd3 from Vermont on Apr 26, 2017
4.21 by Ctb6582 from Maryland on Oct 22, 2016
4.88 by RodSmith from District of Columbia on Jun 29, 2016
4 by calcnerd from Pennsylvania on Jun 03, 2016
4.23 by Gkruszewski from New York on May 19, 2016
3.63 by BarrytheBear from Wisconsin on Mar 27, 2016
4.2 by FalconCount from Texas on Mar 19, 2016
2.46 by drone from Oregon on Feb 21, 2016
4.15 by kwgduke from Pennsylvania on Feb 04, 2016
Photo of _RL_
4.15/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
by _RL_ from Maryland

Excellent, thick, oily pour. Not a ton on the nose. Some earthiness and roastiness on the nose but quite subtle. The taste is faint - not overpowering or boozy at all and the weak point in the beer, mostly roast/burned flavor. The mouthfeel is excellent - thick and chewy. Only thicker beer I've had is Assassin.

Exceptionally smooth, especially for the ABV. Wish this was stuck in some kind of barrel as some bourbon, oak, cognac, etc. could really take this beer to the next level.

Nov 27, 2015
4.03 by killcore from Russian Federation on Oct 04, 2015
Photo of JohnGalt1
3.77/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
by JohnGalt1 from Idaho

Pours with a nice dark tan head that lasts for quite a while. okay lacing.. a bit oily and is pretty dark.

Nose shows as a big acrid oily mess that somehow pulls out and becomes at least a little enjoyable...

rye and black malt with too much "tar" on the palate... This is a great example of a heavy RIS that goes outside the bounds of the traditional big boy stouts. Needs to be enjoyed colder.

Sep 22, 2015
4.03 by JoeBond from Oregon on Sep 19, 2015
4.18 by Zekenyce from New Jersey on Aug 27, 2015
4.57 by davidanastas from Texas on Aug 19, 2015
4 by DeadeyeOTDO from Arizona on Jul 15, 2015
4.21 by mscudder from Georgia on Jul 10, 2015
4.13 by leilei143 from California on Jul 06, 2015
4.29 by South2NW from Oregon on Jul 02, 2015
4.14 by impending from California on May 17, 2015
4.44 by samibr from New York on May 07, 2015
4 by Kelp from New Hampshire on May 06, 2015
4.04 by wethorseblanket from California on Apr 19, 2015
Photo of beerthulhu
4.14/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25
by beerthulhu from New Jersey

A: Viscose syrupy exit sits an inky jet black in the chalice with a caramel-chocolate topping, one inch with a thick, milky cream texture. Thick sheet lace coating dresses the glass.

S: Slight charred pine cone notes, rich, dark milky chocolate, more sweet then bitter with a light to medium awareness per style. No alcohol detection thus far.

T: Big roasted barley and roasted chocolate malts up front. Bite of peppery spice rye follows. Smooth flavor, charred toast, earthy mineral bitterness with smoky pine hints. Smooth charred finish, some spicy rye barrel notes and an soothing complimentary mention of alcohol.

M: Chewy oats and malt, thick, sticky, earthy bittering. You can litteraly chew this like bubblegum. Whats not to love here.

O: Exceptionally smooth drinkability and bitterness with little alcohol contention. Big chewy mouthful, 11.3% abv, a long, slow sipper on the bomber. Great close of winter and start of spring beer.

Apr 03, 2015
Moscow from Midnight Sun Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 296 ratings