Lion Stout | Ceylon / Lion Brewery Limited

BA SCORE
88
very good
1,624 Ratings
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
Ratings:
1,624
Reviews:
905
Avg:
3.93
pDev:
11.7%
 
 
Wants:
79
Gots:
145
For Trade:
0
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,624 |  Reviews: 905
Photo of bigdeuce
4.3/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First off, this is an outstanding stout! Pours a rich black color with a nice two finger head with lacing all the way down the glass. Rich, creamy mouthfeel. Smells and tastes smokey, very different taste than most stouts, although, it does include the coffee, chocolate and toffee like flavors. I was stunned upon trying this, as to it's origin, but this is one of the best out there.

 385 characters

Photo of GreyGhost4
3.85/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Huffs
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of timtim
4.1/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

$3.49 for a 625ml bottle w/ no freshness date and a Michael Jackson blurb on the back saying that it is top fermenting and bottle conditioned. Black with a big coffee with cream colored head that didn't hold too well, but left nice lace. roasted malt, some chocolate and a little sweetness/fruit. taste is the same as nose but better. pretty complex, very well balanced. some coffee flavors and some smokiness comes out as well. mouthfeel is on the lighter side of full, but still full for sure and creamy/oily. hint of bitter or maybe bittersweet in the finish. nice and soft. very well done, solid stout. simple yet complex. not overboard or out there. very drinkable and enjoyable. who knew the sri lankans could do it up so well?

 733 characters

Photo of xungmound98
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%

Photo of JamesLeung
4.39/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of nhindian
3.8/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

~22oz bottle poured into a large snifter.

A - The beer itself pours almost as intimidating as the lion on the label, as it appears a pretty thick black with some muddy brown around the edges. I didn't pour extraordinary hard, but it still rustled a fluffy, 2.5-finger head, mocha in color. Retention is fairly standard, with extra points for lasting as long as it did given the ABV. The only slight I have against the appearance is the weak lacing, which only seems to cover a tiny fraction of what it touches.

S - I am enjoying the nose more than I thought I would, as it comes across as more complex than what I expected. It has the typical roast and malts, but it also gives off lots of dark fruits. Some alcohol coming across at the end which seems to soak the fruits. Nice combination and contrast between the malts and the fruits / hops.

T - The taste starts with a nice shot of coffee roast, which paves the way for the rest of the flavors. The coffee doesn't linger in sense of bitterness, but carefully segues into a rich, dark chocolate. Almost immediately after this, the dark fruits come in, like plums and raisins and even some granny smith apples in the finish, which adds a nice sweetness to complement the malts. After this, the alcohol returns, which is nice at first as it adds yet another layer, but as I drink, I find it more and more intrusive. A bit too fusel for my liking, which is probably my only major complaint for the taste.

M - Mouthfeel is moderately heavy-bodied with medium carbonation. For coming from all the way from Sri Lanka and sitting for who knows how long, I think this beer has held up pretty well, which can't be said for all beers that are imported. Very smooth and creamy, and leaves a lasting impression of alcohol heat, raisins, and chocolate.

D/O - Drinkability is pretty high. This beer really did exceed what little expectations I had from it. I know it's rated solidly, but I still had my own reservations regarding this beer. I'm happy to say that I greatly enjoyed this stout, and at less than $4.50 for a bomber, it certainly outperforms some domestic stouts at a similar and even higher price point. The only glaring flaw I can see with this beer is the amount of alcohol that comes through in the finish, but at almost 9% ABV, I can definitely see where it's coming from.

 2,333 characters

Photo of breardon1776
3.36/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of burnstar
4.08/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours an extremely dark brown to black. Big rocky persistent tan head. Smell is roasted barley. Not a particularly strong aroma. Great complex malty flavor throughout. Sweetness. Raisins. Chocolate. A little roasted malt bitterness and hops. Medium bodied, maybe a little light bodied for a stout but it suits this beer nicely. Well carbonated. Perhaps the best thing about this beer is how crisp and refreshing it is despite being a big tasty stout. Astonishingly drinkable. Really great stuff.

 495 characters

Photo of firstlighthiker
3.25/5  rDev -17.3%

Photo of LittleCreature
3.88/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My bottle reads "Sinha Stout" but it's the same beer.

Appearance - 4.5
A firm pour yeilds a thick, brown, moussy looking head over a an opaque black body, completely impenetrable to light.

Smell - 3.5
I get the impression that this is a stout that would pair very well with oysters. It smells rich, roasted, some burnt astringency, roasted coffee, dried fruit, very grainy for a stout, also somewhat salty.

Taste - 4.0
Very smooth with a good balance of chocolate and molasses sweetness with burnt bitterness. Alcohol presence is barely perceptible amongst the strong flavours, finishes dry.

Mouthfeel - 4.0
Very smooth with low carbonation, feels quite thick, heavy and oily in the mouth.

Drinkability - 4.0
Slightly unfortunate aroma aside, it drinks well for a stout of 8%ABV.

OVERALL - 3.9
Possibly the darkest beer I have so far reviewed, only in the final few millimetres did it become cola-like in appearance. Apart from its unusual aroma, I found this to be a highly enjoyable stout, particularly impressive seeing as it comes from Sri Lanka, not a nation known for brewing.

* After typing this I see that I have made an all-to-common mistake. Stouts and and other dark beers are easier to brew than lighter, crisper styles. Despite the fact that most countries in the world brew at least one pale lager, it is actually one of the hardest styles to get right. Still, good to see a generally non-brewing nation making a stout.

 1,440 characters

Photo of Enola
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer is a deep black with a fair head that fades to a light layer. There is a small amount of lacing. The smell is smoke, roasted grain and coffee. The taste is rich and the coffee and oatmeal flavors show up prominatly. The mouthfeel is good, with the abv well hidden untill the aftertaste where is shows a little. The drinkability as good as I could drink this beer again.

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Photo of EricTKole
3.67/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of shadow1961
3.6/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Lion Stout pours out a rocky tan head over a black brew. The
carbonation is hard to guage, but the nose is is bitter chocolate
raisin, and molasses. The flavor is molasses up front with a bitter
chocolate finish, and as with a lot of stouts I've had, a sort of scotch
boozieness in the background. The aftertaste is more of that bitter
chocolate and hops. The mouthfeel is a bit thin for a stout, also a bit
dry and astringent as well. I associate stouts with cold misrable countries,
but this one comes from Sri Lanka, a hot and miserable country. I'm given
that this 8% alcohol by volume version is strictly for export. It's kind of too
bad native Sri Lankans can't have any. Maybe they would stop shooting
each other...

 735 characters

Photo of dmamiano
4.05/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a black with a big, off white head. lacing hangs to the end.
Smells of chocolate from a factory. Huge odors with a nice mix of sweet, roastyness.
Taste is nice a smooth, big mouthfeel. Very thick and viscous. Chocolate malts, coffee and a hint of alchohol.
Nice beer for the ages.

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Photo of gmfessen
4.06/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, beer is black with a two finger, sparkling nut-brown head. Smell is slightly sweet with coffee and roasted malt notes and a touch of smoke. The taste reminds me of Guinness, only slightly bitterer and with more ABV. The malty roasted profile does a good job covering the alcohol. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a dry finish. Overall, this is a drinkable stout, especially given the ABV. In the short time it has took me to write this review I have finished nearly half of my 330 ml bottle.

 536 characters

Photo of mtrog313
3.25/5  rDev -17.3%

Photo of JamnesCameron
3.95/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This bottle has some age on it. Expires June 2002. Has been properly cellared. Poured into a snifter.

Pours a jet black, no light gets through. Light tan head, drops to a wisp. Some lacing on the aged bottle version that was not there for the can, "fresh" version.

Aromas of sherry, dark fruits, ever so light roastiness.

Flavors of prune, fig and raisin. No hops. Thin iced coffee. Hint of cocoa. Short finish, with some alcohol and prune lingering.

Mouthfeel is thin, almost watery. Mouthcoating alcohol warmth.

Overall, this ages fairly well. A bit on the low end for aging, and the high end for aging this beer. Might be a little passed its prime, but still a fine beer. This may show up in a blind BIF.

 712 characters

Photo of StoutItOutLoud
3.92/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

330-mL can. Unsure of bottling date.

Very dark chestnut brown. 1-finger dark tan head. Decent alcohol legs. 1/2-finger collar lingers. Malt roast, sweet cream, touch of cola. Vigorous swirl opens up licorice and fruit. The dark fruit intensifies with warmth

like Tsunami, the roast doesn't get acrid here. all told, however, the flavor's a tad muted - dark fruit (more similar to an ris or baltic porter), dark brown bread sweetness, but less coffee, dark chocolate than I'd like

thinner mouthfeel, despite the creaminess on the nose, but very, very drinkable. ultimately, I enjoyed this, but I think it strays off style

 623 characters

Photo of mralphabet
3.41/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz Bottle Poured into Pint Glass.

A: Black with a hint of brown, 1 finger head nice tan color with a little lacing.

S: Burnt coffee.

T: Taste is OK, it has a burnt coffee flavor. Maybe some little bitter chocolate, & some roasted malts.

M: Quite a bit of carbonation here... Not as creamy as most stouts I've had... The alcohol is not over powering & the bitterness is pretty light.

D: Not a bad brew, just not very stout like to me.... Got a little better as it warmed up.

 481 characters

Photo of Rojada1988
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of gory4d
4.17/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a can into a tulip pint. Dark, almost black; fluffy tan head. Smell is sweet roastiness, maybe some coffee notes. Taste is quite sweet, but the slightly charred flavor at the back keeps it from being cloying. Thick and smooth. A pleasant beer.

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Photo of Skidz
4.67/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

330mL bottle with freshness date: Best before Feb. 2005. A very heavy bottle for the size, nice packaging.

Pours out dark brown and sits nearly black, with only a bit of deep crimson showing through the very edges. A large, fluffy dark tan, going on brown head sits a top this nice looking beer. Great lacings on the sides, a very attractive brew.

Smells of light roastiness, chocolates with a bit of creaminess, and just a small amount of peppery aromas that pick up on the chocolatey sweetness. Some coffee and other bitter hues present as well. All these blended with nice floral aromas that bring it all together. I'll also note that even with the higher 8.0% ABV, it goes without a trace in the nose.

Tastes of roasted grains and coffee, but is initially sweet, with chocolates and minor fruity tones that breifly introduce you to the beer. Warms the stomach nicely, but, as in the smell, the alcohol slips through without a trace. Finishes with a mild bitterness that houses some nutty, maybe a bit of smoky flavors and overall earthy tones that go hand-in-hand with the roasted grains and coffee found near the front. Excellent flavor, complex in flow and just tastes so good.

A big, full body is the package for the abundance of flavors and aromas that take this beer to another level. Perfect carbonation makes its easy to drink, and allows you to wade through the ocean of flavors presented. A high-quality brew that stands out from most competition. Drink at cellar temperature for best results.

 1,518 characters

Photo of NCSUdo
4/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

625 mL bottle

A: Deep black under a large brown head. No lace and very little retention.

S: Smells of sweet malts, light roastedness, chocolate, bit of coffee, slight burnt aroma.

T: Very subtle in taste. Sweet with mild roasted malt in an other wise sweet finish. Bit of chocolate and light coffee. A certain hop and dark fruit character shows up too.

M/D: Full bodied, light carbonation, a little slick. Very good drinkability for a big stout. Pretty tasty.

 463 characters

Photo of DioS
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Lion Stout from Ceylon / Lion Brewery Limited
3.93 out of 5 based on 1,624 ratings.
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