Lion Stout | Ceylon / Lion Brewery Limited

BA SCORE
88
very good
1,618 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:
1,618
Reviews:
901
Avg:
3.93
pDev:
11.7%
 
 
Wants:
78
Gots:
142
For Trade:
0
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,618 |  Reviews: 901
Photo of LittleBreeze
4.22/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This one is outstanding. It opens up so much when warmed to a proper temperature. Bold aroma. Bold Flavors. Smooth.

Mouthfeel is outstanding. Coats the tongue and allows each flavor to play. ABV wasn't aggressive. I felt the beer went down rather easy. However, it is more of a sipper.

Served to cold it seems like a bitter assault. I'm looking forward to laying down a few.

 377 characters

Photo of krustster
4.65/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I decided to re-re-review this as my first one was based on a mildly infected box, then my second attempt was a drunken, rambling mess. I actually ended up increasing some of my scores now that my nose isn't so stuffy and I'm in a better state of mind to pick up on the subtleties.

Awesome appearance. Nearly black, but just a bit of light shines through at the edges. Big, creamy, tan head with excellent retention. Kind of hard to describe but the best way I can put it is that the bubbles are extremely fine, almost like a nitro stout. Thick sheets of lacing everywhere. An oddly unique look, and one of the most appealing that I've seen.

Nose is lively with some coffee, dark fruit (I still hate saying that), sweet roasted malts, and a slight hint of alcohol. There's another scent under there that's hard to identify which I like a lot, and which gives this beer a lot of its character. Oh, that's it, chocolate! Almost a milk chocolate, not the bitter dark of most stouts (well, imperial ones, which what I normally reach for).

Delicious taste that reveals some more nuance. Assertive coffee/roast flavor that is kept in check by the underlying fruity sweetness. I guess you could say that the entry has more fruit and sweetness and creamy milk chocolate, with the roasted character coming out in the... mid palate? Is that a thing? The finish goes back to more of a fruit and light chocolate taste, with very light bitterness coming out as it fades. It's hard to to fully express my appreciation for this beer's taste, because it's got a lot of flavor, but the balance is what's important, and that's difficult to describe. I think it's the balance of chocolate and fruit that does it to me. And it's really not that sweet overall, which is another plus.

Mouthfeel is another strong point. The carbonation is fairly high, but once again, oddly fine. It's sharp on the entry, but not too much. Body is on the lighter end of medium, really quite unusual when you consider the nearly 9% ABV, but this is another oddity that ends up working very well for me. Rather dry finish. Smooth, creamy, incredibly drinkable for how strong it is. Compared to most stouts, it's almost like drinking a champagne, and it works! I'm used to drinking imperials that blast my throat with extreme viscosity and just saying "oh man it's so thick I love it." This one is a little strange and the various elements all come together to make something unique and, to me, fantastic.

One of my favorite stouts overall, and definitely my favorite one that isn't limited/fancy/hard to find. When you factor in the price, this is very nearly a perfect beer. Less than $10 for a four pack of 500ml cans or under $5 for a bomber, unbelievable. I'm sure a lot of the low reviews are of infected/"off" batches, judging by how different some of the descriptions are. I've got a pretty big backlog of beers at home to work through, and yet I just keep buying more Lion Stout. It's a versatile beer suitable for thoughtful sipping or just partying and tossing back. A true classic!

 3,057 characters

Photo of Baileyuk
4.71/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

tasted a full bottle at a beer tasting (it was my first drink so my tastebuds were clean).

poured an excellent looking black with a great off white/brown head. Lacing was superb.

Smell of alcohol, roasted malts, oak and cider.

sweet taste with some of the cider smell definately displayed.

was very smooth, especially for a stout. I could, and did drink a couple. I am not the greatest stout fan but will have this again in the future.

 440 characters

Photo of EZE123
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of TokyoCO
4.27/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Picked up a bottle in Japan, poured into a goblet.

A: Dark black with slight amber on the edges. Large head!

S: Sweet malts, milk chocolate, dark fruits. Quite a robust smell.

T: Starts off creamy and sweet, fruits are present. More bitter malts and slight chocolate/coffee taste is present in the middle. Ends with bitter chocolate and slight alcohol burn.

M: Creamy but not overly heavy.

O: This is good! No one taste is overwhelming as it is well balanced. Not as strong coffee and chocolate as a lot of stouts but the sweet malts and fruit are great. Definitely a sipper!

 581 characters

Photo of al_al1357
4.49/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of ahentz
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of NickySop
3.43/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of 86sportster883
3.8/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The Lion Stout is perfectly named. It has many of the more pleasant roasted malt and coffee like features of a quality dry stout, combined with a big 8% abv to boot.

Pours black and opaque with a quickly fading tan head and a faintly sour aroma. I enjoyed the way the alcohol blended with the bittersweet chocolate flavors. Robust and roasty, but at no time harsh. Medium bodied with a good mouthfeel, but I would not describe it as remarkably smooth. Well balanced though, with a relatively clean dry finish.

Overall, a good foreign stout that I wish I had more of.

 569 characters

Photo of hamrwolf
3.52/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of jstilwell
3.78/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I had heard that this stout had been touted by Mr. Jackson and I'm on a stout kick and had never tried it so...

A: Pours a nice thick black with a 2-3 inch light brown head. Nice lacing on the sides. This batch appears to be fresh.

S: Nice roasted nut smell

T: Very very smooth stout, creamy, nutty, not very bitter but a slightly metallic after taste keeps it from a higher rating. The 8% alcohol is VERY well hidden.

M: Mouthfeel is pleasant but more watery than the brew appears.

D: I could drink several of these. The alcohol is well disguised behind the mild sweetness and nutty flavors. This is a well balanced stout and is a great "value" purchase at $10 for 6. The aftertaste is my only real problem with this offering. Overall, very enjoyable.

 757 characters

Photo of l0rddavis
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of hdelavega
3.53/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle to an oversized wine glass.
Dark oily black in color, light khaki head.
Nice roasty chocolate malt character in the nose, very well masked alcohol, a tiny bit of dark fruit, carmal, and vanilla.
Taste is full of chocolate, a bit of chili, some mote vanilla. I get some mote fruit, defiantly a nice coffee bitterness,
Mouth feel has a pretty high carbonation. A bit creamy, there is a bit more chilli in the finish. Pretty thin body.
Overall not bad, I love using this stout for cooking but rarely buy it to drink. Not a bad beer at all though.

 569 characters

Photo of corzocl
4.75/5  rDev +20.9%

Photo of MrWilliams
4.02/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

The simple design of the can is what caught my eye originally. Very little information provided just a sleek black can with red lettering saying Lion Stout, and a picture, you guessed it, of a lion.

Poured from a can into a tulip glass.

A 4.0) Poured easy received about a two finger head, mocha, colored that died down quickly. Deep opaque brown, and when held to the light only the barest amount shone through the edges. no lacing to speak of, the slightest bit that did present itself quickly vanished.

S 3.75) Dominant raisin smell with undertones of burnt toast. Just a touch of smoke but it's almost an after thought.

T 4.25) Served cold straight from the fridge. To begin with dark chocolate was the dominant flavor. A bit of slightly burnt toast presented itself on the finish and no hop presence. After letting it warm up a bit raisins became dominant. Chocolate still lingered and and toast became a bit more evident, overall the flavor reminds me of a cola with just a bit extra syrup but without the sweetness.

M 3.75) Mouthfeel is fair to middlin'. Not as heavy as many imperial stouts but nowhere near as watery as some of your basic stouts. Carbonation was very evident and almost tickled the nose on the first few sips but mellowed out a bit as the glass emptied. Still it lingered with a slight tingle on the tongue.

O 4.0) Quite enjoyable. I haven't looked yet to see the availability of this beer but my beer guy said it was the first time they had had it in two years. If I can find it more though I think that this could become a staple. Easy to drink with a middlin' ABV content of 8.8%.

 1,618 characters

Photo of Dmecca
4.18/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of ponbon63
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of Yankeejw
3.64/5  rDev -7.4%

Photo of tendermorsel
4.78/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is awesome. Truly a great and unique stout.

I found this beer in a 22 oz bottle at a local liquor store. I drank it in two servings. It was ice cold for the first glass. Poured brown with a nice thick head. Sort of creamy with distinct coffee notes.

The second glass (slightly warmer) was much more complex. Simular coffee notes but also subitle fruit flavors appeared. Very easy drinking beer for a stout. Strong in alcohol but not overpowering in alcohol taste.

All in all an awesome and unique beer. I haven't seen it around. I heard rumors that the brewery was not producing it any more. If you see it get... If you like stouts you won't be disappointed.

 679 characters

Photo of rayman2112
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of bnuttz
4.08/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a somewhat translucent dark black color with a large and foam dark tan head. Smells of bitter roasty malts, chocolate and coffee, and a somewhat metallic smell is present as well. Taste is sweet and chocolatey with an alcohol presence. Very smooth, and somewhat acidic, but not in a real bitter way. Mouthfeel is smooth and on the thinner side, no a thick brew by any means. Drinkability is very good for an 8% brew.

 422 characters

Photo of seanmugs
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of dookiebrown
4.5/5  rDev +14.5%

Photo of dcf5ve
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of optiontwo
4.27/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Very dark brown with a half inch tan head. OK retention, not much lacing.

Smell: Spicy chocolate, caramel, and toffee commingle with earthy hops and sweet coffee. Smells good!

Taste: Beautifully balanced. Roasted malts meet caramel and chocolate flavors instantaneously followed by a good amount of citrus hop and bittersweet hazelnut and vanilla.

Mouthfeel: Thick but not too heavy, spot on.

Drinkability: Fairly high for a bigger stout.

Overall: I had heard a lot of good things about this beer and seeing Michael Jackson's face on the back of the bottle is pretty reassuring but I still had my doubts for some reason. Well, those were all wiped away as soon as I took my first sip of this delicious brew. If you think you only like American stouts try this. It has all the deliciousness you'd expect from any hop forward American stout. Will definitely be getting this again very soon.

 905 characters

Lion Stout from Ceylon / Lion Brewery Limited
3.93 out of 5 based on 1,618 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.

    Subscribe