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Lion Stout | Ceylon / Lion Brewery Limited

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BA SCORE
88
very good
896 Reviews
THE BROS
83
good
Read the review
Lion StoutLion Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Ceylon / Lion Brewery Limited
Sri Lanka
lionbeer.com

Style: Foreign / Export Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
The dark caramel, large dense headed brew, with its 8.8% alcoholic content, is unique due to its sweet notes of chocolate and coffee interspersed into a foundation of dark roasted barley. Symbolic black to denote leadership, power, focus and strength, is dominant in the labeling as the lion journeys in the twilight unafraid, unbowed and unchallenged.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-28-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
896
Ratings:
1,600
Avg:
3.93
pDev:
15.78%
 
 
Wants:
75
Gots:
131
For Trade:
0
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Reviews: 896 | Ratings: 1,600
Photo of BeerResearcher
3.14/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Liquorish with a dark chocolate hue. A deep heavy malt is at once, creamy and sweet. Lacking any real hop aroma the surprise is the full bitter hop bite. Heavy and flavorful chocolate and coffee notes blend in well. Tricky alcochol is certainly there, but hardly noticeable. The creamy head fades quickly.

 305 characters

Photo of slitherySOB
3.14/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

The bottle said Sinha stout, but I am sure this is the same thing as well. Pours extremely dark with a large amount of brown foam that quickly disipates to a thin film. Very little lace left on the glass. Smells ripe with dark cherries, plums, chocolate, rum, mollases, and roasted malts. Flavour is quite balanced. Starts out slightly sweet, with an aftertaste of bitter coffee and roasted malts. Mouthfeel is a bit watery, though. As if someone took a good stout and added a litre of water. Still, an overall decent beer. Not sure if it's a dry or sweet stout. Perhaps a hybrid.

 580 characters

Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.15/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3

11.2 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a very dark red color with nice opacity. The head is a huge, foaming three finger khaki color that descends to one finger after a while. Plenty of lacing is left behind, as well.

S: Big, massive, hugely sweet chocolate. Some dark fruits, as well. Actually, come to think about it, there's a minor whiff of sour cherries - infection, perhaps? We shall see. I still enjoy the aroma greatly, but that foamy head should have been a giveaway.

T: The flavor takes on more of a roasted barley and coffee bean tone, especially at first, while waves of chocolaty sweet and - unfortunately - tart cherries seemingly via an onsetting infection. After a while, the tartness takes center stage. Some herbal hop flavors also try to pop up in the finish, as well. So what we have here is a lightly soured stout, and it kind of works. Not perfectly by any means, but there's enough sweetness here to keep it in check.

M: Quite light in its loafers with wimpy carbonation. There's actually an esophageal burn and a bit of stomach turning which completely tanks the mouthfeel score for me. On the palate proper, it's not particularly dry, but nicely bittersweet'n'sour; whatever the blue hell that's supposed to mean.

O: Infected - it just has to be. But thank Odin it's a minor infection that actually gives it a pleasant twist, instead of twisting my mouth sideways and dissolving my tongue. This clearly isn't the final product as it's intended to be - thankfully I have a penchant for a good Flemish-style ale along side my stout tooth, so I still think it's quite okay.

If you're bottle has "123881841" on it, just be wary.

 1,659 characters

Photo of wedgie9
3.16/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Tasted from a can. Pours nearly black with a very thick and frothy light brown head. Nose is coffee, dark chocolate, very roasted malts, and light hops. On the palate, the flavor is fruitier, displaying prune, the chocolate is more of a milk chocolate than dark chocolate. The malts taste a little more like caramel than expected, and the hops add a nice dimension as well. On the palate, this beer is actually lighter than expected, due in large part to the heavy carbonation. The finish is not terribly long. Overall, this is a very drinkable stout.

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Photo of schrist275
3.17/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A very quick developing head, colored like a frappacino sits easily on top of a very very dark dark maroon/black colored almost wine smelling bier. The first sip delivers chocolate and mellow hops. Its almost syrupy constitution lends itself well to the smell, they work very well together. If the taste could develop more of an after taste or carry the flavor further along the tongue it would be an outstanding beer. The alcohol volume is not readily tasted, but comes across in the wine like smell.

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Photo of bigdrewsmoove
3.17/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours very dark with a substantial, two-finger brown cream head that sticks around for quite a while. Smell is pungent with a powerful alcohol smell. Almost reminds me of the smell of Name Tag beer which isn't the greatest smell in the world. Taste had some coffee and mocha flavors as the bottle suggested. Going to have to pick this up again from somewhere else than world market. Bottle had stuff floating in the bottom of it and tasted old. I have had other bottles from there that had stuff in it as well and just weren't very fresh. I'll update what I find.

 563 characters

Photo of Todd
3.18/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Presentation: 625ml brown bottle with a gold foil neck. MJ, the beer hunter, is pictured on the back of the label with a cheesy endorsement. Expiration date printed on the bottle.

Appearance: Black with brown hues. Pours a massive tan head with a creamy/foamy consistency, lots of glass stick and great retention. Unfiltered.

Smell: Caramel, light roasted notes, wet paper, touch of musty fruit.

Taste: A malty sweet brew, smooth and mature in character. Caramel, chocolate and mocha flavours are dominant with a touch of blackstrap molasses in the background. Wet paper flavours pull-thru revealing some oxidation of the beer. Soft, even mouthfeel. Alcohol is not evident in taste, but you can feel it working the brain. Mild astringent bite and dryness. Finish is chocolaty, a bit metallic and dries up.

Notes: Over-promoted by Michael Jackson and over-hyped in general. A pretty average sweet stout that has potential to be something better, but it never gets there. It sits somewhere between a dry Irish stout and typical sweet stout, leaning a bit too much towards the dry with its flat, one dimensional malt profile. Still at least worth a try for all of you stout lovers out there.

 1,200 characters

Photo of CaptainIPA
3.18/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

P: A Sri Lankan Stout heavily endorsed by Michael Jackson, The Beer Hunter? Bizarre. Presented in a 12 oz., brown bottle with the king of beasts adorning the label and various "quality" awards depicted on the neckband. Purchased as a single bottle from Three Cellars.

A: Pours an inky black with a generous tan-colored head. No apparent lacing.

S: Chocolate and caramel malts, dried fruit and wet cardboard.

T: Sweet chocolate malt with notes of earthy peat, smoke, and peppery spice. Suggestions of dried fruit -- primarily prunes -- come to mind. A touch of vanilla emerges on the back end. Finishes sweet and slightly astringent with a flash of well-concealed alcohol.

M: Velvety smooth on the palate.

D: I didn't find this Stout remarkably drinkable. Beware, the alcohol in this brew creeps up out of nowhere.

 821 characters

Photo of Brubaker
3.19/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Black with super 3 finger head that dissipate to a nice lace.

S- Coffee & malt

T- Sweet coffee, alcohol, malts, fruit/spice

M- Bubbly, maybe watery

O- Should be stronger & richer for a Stout. Alcohol and coffee mingle to make a anise/spice flavor.

Might Drink
Wouldn't Buy
Wouldn't Make

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Photo of TastyTaste
3.2/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured a pitch black color, dark tan head, not a whole lot fo lacing on the way down. Smell is of slight coffee and alcohol hints. Taste is too much alcohol, not enough stout, too much carbonation. Not a rich enough body to support the other flavors. There are better stouts, including ones that don't get Michael Jackson to pimp their beer.

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Photo of cyrock1
3.2/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Black with a 3/4 inch moderately dark tan head.

Smell: Coffee and a little burnt sugar. Some toffee and caramel in the background.

Taste: Burnt toast and coffee with a handful of carmelized sugar on top.

Mouthfeel: Quick fading carbonation and hardly any hop bitterness.

Drinkability: A bit too astringent on the tongue in the after taste to want another one right away. Not really a sessionable stout.

 418 characters

Photo of Popkorn615
3.2/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a bottle into a medium, glass goblet.

A - Pours to a black body with a quickly dissipating, one-finger head.

S - A slight hoppy, and almost liquory fragrance (probably due to its 8% alc by vol). Chocolate and coffee are buried underneath this fragrance as well. There's also a slight raisin smell to it.

T - Chocolatey and coffee-like. It has characteristics of a whiskey-like taste (also probably due to its proof). However, the moment it got the slightest bit warm, it got a little hard to drink and slightly unappetizing for me. The flavors, however, make it decently filling.

M - It feels warms on the way down, similar to a whiskey burn, but obviously not as drastic. It is not too thick and not too thin - virtually down the middle (a little on the thicker side, if I had to choose one).

D - Because of the warmth as it goes down, as well as its many flavors, I wouldn't be able to enjoy it with a meal. Personally, I would drink it after as a compliment (with or without a dessert). Because of its flavor and how filling it is, I could really only stomach two at most.

I know that this beer has gotten pretty good reviews, but personally, it's just not for me.

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Photo of JuicesFlowing
3.21/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a standard pint glass. The beer is coffee black. The dark cream head dissipates to a wisp. Minimal lacing. Smells weird, like Elmer's glue. Tastes of sweet vanilla over roasted malts and bitter chocolate. There is a brown sugar thing in there too, I swear. And to mimic the smell, a hint of glue! ??? The mouthfeel is a carbonated soda like feel.

Overall, this beer is weird. Not necessarily in a bad way. But I do detect a weird glue smell and taste. I picked up the brown sugar presence later on as the beer warmed up. I will say that for 8.8% ABV, the alcohol is hardly detectable, which is awesome, I hate boozy beers. I've seen this in stores for years, and was curious. I won't ever have one again, but at least I know what it is. Not bad, just interesting.

 777 characters

Photo of fountainofyouth
3.21/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle.

Appearance: Totally black and opaque, with no highlights. Large, light brown head.

Smell: Caramel malt and sweet chocolate.

Taste: Disappointingly bland-ish, with a little bit of sweet malt but almost nothing on the finish. Uncharacteristic of a foreign export stout.

Mouthfeel: Creamy mouthfeel, light carbonation.

Overall: Not a favorite -- too boring.

 389 characters

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.23/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured in to Founder's tulip.

A - Poured black with 2 fingers of foamy light brown head.

S - Roasted malts, a touch of licorice, some hazelnut and a some light coffee notes. Alcohol is slightly noticeable and the overall nose is somewhat bland.

T - Roasted malts, a touch of coffee, chocolate and some sweetness. Not overly complex for the style but still an enjoyable and easy to drink beer. The alcohol is also somewhat noticeable on the palate.

M - Medium body, moderate carbonation.

 494 characters

Photo of Minkybut
3.23/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured this beer into tumbler at 48 degrees. Beer was very black with a giant brown head that really lasted. Fruity nose chocolate oozing from chocolaty head. Good lacing. Slight interesting smoky taste but also a bit sour to me which turned me off. Will not buy again.

 269 characters

Photo of codewarrior
3.23/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

330mL from a mix and match 6-pack, poured into a snifter

Picked this bottle up on recommendation of the beer guy at Joy Wines on 6th. It's not a bad 6-pack stout, all things considered.

A: Pours dark and thick, pitch black with 2-fingers creamy thick head. Looks like a stout.

S: Rich bitterness, and a slight unexpected hoppiness. Something else in here, but not sure what. Slight hints at smokiness.

T: Good front, bitter, good back, fading into chocolate, middle is kind of implacable and lost. Smokiness increases a lot as the beer opens up, and ultimately makes the middle a bit better down the long-haul.

F: Bit on the thin side for a stout, feels nearer a porter to my mouth.

D: Similar to B.O.R.I.S. in a number of ways, only not as good. Still, for the price, this is a very tasty stout.

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Photo of hardy008
3.25/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours black, not letting any light through. Has a 2 finger foamy tan head with good retention. The aroma has roasted malt and chocolate.

The taste also has a lot of roasted malt and dark bitter chocolate. There is also some vanilla. Is somewhat more bitter than sweet.

Medium bodied, decent carbonation. Not a beer that I love, but one that I do like. I would like it more, if there wasn't a somewhat burnt bitter aftertaste.

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Photo of mikesgroove
3.26/5  rDev -17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Saw this on the shelf and just had to pick it up. SSomething just really intriques me, probabaly the look on the bottle, looked like it was gonna hurt, so I had to try it.

A - Poured very very dark black, opaque with a huge billowing tan head. Took forever to settle down. Lots of residual lace pretty much obscured the entire glass, if there was visible carbonation I couldnt tell, too thick...

S - Very strong, bitter coffee grinds and very dark chocoalte, a touch of alcohol and some hoppiness as it warmed.

T - Very bitter, especially for a stout. Lots of coffee and a touch of chocolate as well. Had a dry finish. Not overall that pleasant though, too bitter and was trying to balance out and be something it was not.

M - Smooth, but very dry in the finish. Nice carbonation gave it a somehat creamy feel and a thick presence. Felt like a stout.

D - Ehh, it was drinkable, and at 8% abv, really showed no sign of the alcohol so it was definatly well hidden. I guess you could drink a few, I really wouldnt.

Overall this was ok. Maybe a notch above average for a stout, but just wasnt really what I was looking for. It really needed some more sweetness to it...It was good dont get me wrong, just not something I would really want to drink alot of. Give a shot for a try, it was definatly good for that.

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Photo of bbeane
3.26/5  rDev -17%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Poured into a 16oz tumbler... Has a thick brown head that slowly disappates. No light can be seen through it

S- Has the typical toasty stout smell, but lacks the chocolate or mocha overtones

T- Has the burnt stout taste with an ever so little hint of chocolate. Little detection of the slightly higher abv

M- Actually feels a bit watered down... less chewy than other chocolate stouts

D- Would drink another, but if there was other options... I would try something else

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Photo of samyoung
3.28/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Hamtramck liquor store on north Jo. Campau had a special on Lion. Have seen this one many times but have never bitten the bullet. This time the price was right.

A-Very nice, thick, creamy, black as night.
S-Roasted malty with hints of cream.
T-Smooth, with some hoppiness. Somewhat weak for stout. No doubt Haywards Black is a half assed copy of this recipe.
M-Fleeting.
O-Sri Lankans make a decent stout. Michael Jackson cannot be wrong as the label correctly implies.

 470 characters

Photo of claytong
3.3/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

appearance - wort brown in color. thick. solid tan head. looks a bit odd.

smell - malt overload. malt here, a malt there, a malt everywhere. samichlaus meet lion. minor coffee and brown sugar.

taste - a bit of grain. otherwise finishes the nose.

mouthfeel - everything is mediocre. mediocre carbonation, mediocre taste, mediocre body eh.

cheap but not really worth the price.

 379 characters

Photo of HarrySTruman
3.3/5  rDev -16%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Huge frothy head, nearly 50% head. Lot's of lacing. Really looks the part of a beautiful stout.

The taste is a bit sweet for me when comparing it to other stouts. Coffee is the predominant flavor and alcohol is the predominant smell.

The price and the ABV of this, while having a very strong drinkability, make this a solid choice. I would certainly drink this beer again.

 374 characters

Photo of blatherbeard
3.33/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The pour is dark...and i mean DAAARK. It pours an almost pitch black in color but has a white 1.5 inch head that actually dissipates quite fast.

The smell of coffee assaults my nostrils along with hops and malt. More malt than hops, but also an alchoholish smell.

Taste is a bit of coffee, a bit of chocolate, alot of malt and almost a taste of ....well vodka. And not good vodka.

Mouthfeel is very thick. Slides right down the back of your throat but doesnt stick to the back of your throat like some stouts.

For a beer that has an overpowering taste of alchohol, its drinkability is good. The alcohol taste fades quickly and the aftertaste is just, for lack of a better description, nice.

Id buy this again, just not every day.

 739 characters

Photo of johnnnniee
3.33/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown/black with a modest tan head the retreats quickly lacing the glass on the way down. Smell of dried fruit, and a bit of cocoa, some phenolic or higher alcohol in there to. Tastes of bitter roasted chocolate and coffee with a bit of dark fruit, then ends with some roast bitterness and a bit of alcohol or maybe fusel, its muted but there and I can't put my finger on it. Medium to thin body with a creamy/oily mouthfeel. Lingering roast bitterness after each sip. Good stout, a bit to vinous for my taste.

 523 characters

Lion Stout from Ceylon / Lion Brewery Limited
3.93 out of 5 based on 1,600 ratings.
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