Lion Stout | Ceylon / Lion Brewery Limited

BA SCORE
88
very good
1,619 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:
1,619
Reviews:
901
Avg:
3.93
pDev:
11.7%
 
 
Wants:
78
Gots:
143
For Trade:
0
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,619 |  Reviews: 901
Photo of oberon
4.1/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pitch black with a reddish tint near the bottem of the glass with a slight brown head,aroma is of burnt fruit and bitter chocolate.Very intense flavors in this one burnt fruit and bitter sweet chocolate with some nice earthiness in the finish.I really like this stout very intense flavors a nice one to savor in my opinion.

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Photo of jlindros
3.85/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I heard this was an interesting beer, and it's from Sri Lanka, probably the first thing I've ever had from there. Here's the review, enjoy.

A: Pours super dark with a huge rich creamy head. The head rises to be 50% of the glass with a thick dark chocolate colored creamy foamy head. It slowly pops downwards. The black stout doesn't let any light through, so it's basically pitch black.

N: Nose is interesting, with some creamy malt aromas, spicy alcohol, toasted aromas, slight fruit, almost an aroma of toasted seeds, like toasting pumpkin seeds. Sweet malts and syrupy aromas also take a liking to it. It's a very unique and strange nose that I can't even pick out aromas to describe.

T: Starts with some nice chocolate flavors, creamy milk chocolate. Then some tangy spicy flavors that are also semi strange and interesting at the same time. Some light smoky flavors, and some char, like taking a bite from a charred log, literally. It's weird. The strange toasted seed aroma comes out slightly in the taste as well. It's so unique and interesting. Not amazing flavor, but interesting. A slight coffee taste comes through on burps as well. Some dark fruits also come through, fig and raisin mostly, with tastes of nuts and nutmeg.

M: Pretty creamy and thick, and despite the head not much carbonation.

F: Finishes semi bitter, slightly tangy and spicy as well. Pretty dry too, and leaves a chocolate powder flavor in the mouth, like chewing on cocoa powder. There's also some lingering fruit flavors and the stout like bitterness sticking around. It does hide the 8% abv well though.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.21/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First off, let me say that this stout delivered much more than I was expecting. It's very unique, enjoyable, and highly drinkable. It pours an opaque black body with no visible highlights, topped by a full, very creamy light tan head that holds quite well and leaves really nice, full lace. The aroma is fruity, cocoaish, and mildly chocolatey. The body is medium with a very fine and gentle carbonation that leaves it quite smooth and creamy in the mouth. The taste starts fruity, becomes sweetly chocolatey, and finishes with a light, almost smoky roastiness and lingering softly sweet notes of chocolate and caramel. Very mocha! The dark malts lend a light acidity which accentuates the fruitiness and helps to balance the malt. It never becomes cloying. The well balanced bitterness is subtle, and it relies on the roastiness and light acidity to help balance the sweet malts. Although it's probably not the best beer for a night out with the lads, it makes a great appertif, dessert beer, or nightcap. Well worth trying.

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

Large can served in a Belgian snifter after some time for warming.

Pours thick and essentially black with a moderate size, semi-durable tan head. The glass gets coated with lacing each time its tipped but the lacing doesn't stick to the glass/ .

The aroma is relatively strong and fruity, with some alcohol esters and a hint of coffee.

The flavor is moderately strong and surprisingly sweet. Mainly dark roasted malts with no char or burnt grain notes. Subtle hints of coffee and dark fruits.

Smooth, medium-full body with appropriate carbonation.

Overall: I drank this beer somewhat frequently when it first came to the US. It was a bargain at the time and, of course, quite good. Now it tastes sweeter than I remember and not quite as good but plenty good enough to recommend. Well hidden alcohol.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.68/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from an 11.2oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep dark brown color, with a short light brown head that fades slowly and leaves a thick on the glass.

S: The aroma contains dark fruit, coffee, chocolate, licorice and roasted malts.

T: The taste starts out with a quick burst of smokiness that is followed by a hearty roasted malt character. Then some flavors of coffee, milk chocolate, dark fruit and spices come in along with a mild sweetness. The hops presence is very mild but complementary and brings a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty with good complexity, goes down easily, not too filling, good kick, good representation of style, although there are others in the style that I would choose first, this is a solid beer worth drinking for a while.

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

A: Pours a very dark black with a two finger tall tan head. There is some head retention and significant lacing is observed.

S: Slight hint of alcohol in the smell of this beer but the primary aromas are sweet malts, brown sugar, vanilla, and coffee.

T: Flavors are mostly coffee, vanilla, caramel, and toasted malts. There is a light and pleasant bitterness in the finish but overall this is a sweet beer.

M: Medium to full bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation.

O: Much better than I was expecting, being that Sri Lanka is not one of the places that is renown for stouts. A little too sweet for me personally but a very enjoyable beer and easy to drink.

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Photo of wethorseblanket
3.9/5  rDev -0.8%

Photo of nathanmiller
3.16/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of mendvicdog
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of dcmchew
4.3/5  rDev +9.4%

The Michael Jackson quote on the back label made me pick this up, i'm really curious about it.
A beautiful pour, entirely black with a generous mocha head, creamy and lasting a long while, leaving lots of lacing on the glass.
Smells nice too, dark chocolate laced with licorice and some vanilla, sweet coffee, plum jam, faintly smoked roasted malts, aromatic herbs, brown sugar and syrup.
Starts with sweet chocolate, creamy, with sour cherry, plum, fig, and an alcoholic warmth, giving the impression of brandy-filled chocolates from the get go. The appropriate spices, with licorice, vanilla, citrus peel and a floral/herbal feel reminding of Breckland thyme tea, faintly minty. Roast brings a big burnt bread crust aroma in the finish, mixed with the lingering sweetness, like molasses, and some sweet coffee too. Finishes fresh, with a mild herbal bitterness in lieu of a big roastiness. A hint of oxidation too, clearer later on.
Thus flavors get through to the aftertaste easily, with nice dark fruit, light chocolate, sherry, sweet dark malts and just a bit of roast. Medium body and carbonation, but full and chewy.
Didn't impress me with the advertised "chocolatey, mocha character", but it has a great complexity, great flavors with just a few faults, ignorable. Never imagined a beer from Sri Lanka of all places could be this good.

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Photo of billab914
3.52/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Stone RIS glass. Poured black with a thick tan head covering the top of the beer. The head faded and clung to the sides of the glass
but left some nice lacing.

The aroma has a little roastedness to it but more of the chocolaty slightly sweet smell than a roasty bitterness. Unfortunately I seem to get a mustiness or almost a very slight sourness to it that I didn't expect and didn't enjoy. I would almost say the bottle might be bad based on the nose but the taste shows no signs of it at all.

The taste shows a lot of chocolate and mocha with a very light bitter roastedness coming through in the finish to help balance it out a bit.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is decent, it was a pretty smooth drinking stout but wasn't one I'd probably buy again. It had some nice chocolaty flavors to it but it just didn't really wow me.

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

Appearance: Standard black stout color with creamy beige head. Minimal head retention and lacing.

Smell: Sweet roasted maltiness with a definite waft of alcohol and a hint of raisin. All with a real dank mustiness to it. Huh.

Taste: Initially, a distinct smack of malt sweetness hits the tongue, supplanted by vanilla and plums. Finishes dry, similarly to a cup of coffee.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, though still a bit lighter and lacking the fullness that I both crave and demand! Carbonation is rather low, allowing the beer to achieve some creaminess.

Drinkability: A genuinely decent stout, and one of the better foreign stouts I've tasted.

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Photo of russpowell
4.42/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours from super sturdy 330ml bottle to a jet black color with a 4 fingers+ milkshake-like dark tan head. Good head retention and slight lacing

Smell: Frutiness, chocolate notes, licorice, some grainy notes as the beer warms. Slight alcohol, roasted malts, & ever so slight sour taste (that works) in the finish

MF: slight oilyness, some prickyness. that detracts. Good carbonation levels

Prettydrinkable: Makes me think baltic porter. Easily one of the best beers from the southern hemisphere I know of, only a few aussies could challenge

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.18/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Polished mahogany with generous garnet highlights that are created by bright morning sunshine pouring through my front window. The tremendous, cascading, golden ecru head has now settled down to a firm, three finger cap. I'm sure the 8.0% ABV is at least partially responsible for the disappointing amount of lace. A classic look.

The nose is dominated by roasted black malt. Dark chocolate is present as well, although it smells powdery and dry rather than sweet and rich. Faint coffee notes add additional interest. Unfortunately, there's just enough mustiness to keep me from loving the nose.

Lion Stout is much, much better on the palate. The flavor is multi-faceted, distinctive and just plain ol' good. My initial impressions are roasted barley, bittersweet chocolate, light molasses and a hint of anise. There's something else present, something sweetly floral, that makes me think there's a secret ingredient. Some exotic jungle flower perhaps? It's probably just hops, but it's different and delicious.

Sweet and bitter work well together, from start to lingering end. The various flavors are well-integrated when beer hits taste buds, then fan out beautifully and allow one to savor each in turn if desired. The mouthfeel is initially no better than acceptable for the style, then develops a lightly silky smoothness as the beer warms. The ABV is as well-masked as possible, drinking much lower than 8.0%.

I imagine Lion Stout is the pride of Sri Lanka. It's an incredibly flavorful beer whose singular, exotic deliciousness impresses me to no end. In fact, it's one of the best foreign/export stouts (that are actually foreign) that I've ever had.

 1,670 characters

Photo of mdaschaf
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of Ciocanelu
4.03/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of smcolw
3.96/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dark tan head of solid, tight bubbles. As it dissipates, large bubbles form with remnants left on the glass with a similarity to hot cocoa. Pours a dark brown where light cannot pass through.

Strong chocolate aromas; a little chaulky. Very mild.

Creamy body with a low carbonation. The flavor is similar to milk chocolate without sugar. The aftertaste lasts a long time with a coffee-ish touch and strong alcohol warmth.

I'd love to try this against some milk stouts and some imperial stouts as this beer seems to have attributes of both.

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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 Slatetank
4.12/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked this up at Brass Rail Deli, poured chilled from the can into a tulip.

A - an opaque, black as night color w/ thick band of beige, the lace clings decently and bead is average size

S - The smell is very good, lots of dried fruit aromas: fig, raisin and currant w/ a slight scent of roasted grain and mild alcohol in the aroma

M - A feel that has smooth carbonation with a mild level of sweetness and roastiness, the textue is full bodied and has a mild warmth of alcohol as it finishes

T - The flavor follows the nose pretty closely with mild fig, slight dark cocoa bitterness and mild hop effect w/ a moderate amount of wood/tobacco in the background a very nice flavor profile

D - I enjoyed this one a lot, a very good example of the style and nice to have from a can too. I would recommend this to anyone who likes strong stouts

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Photo of Jason
4.35/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

330ml / 11.5oz brown bottle with an expiration date printed on the bottle. Stellar lacing on the glass with a ring being left nearly every sip. Coal black with virtually no light coming through.

Sweet molasses, prunes and black currants, thick roasted coffee, baker’s chocolate and a estery alcohol are all aromas I pick off of this stout.

Full bodied with a moderate carbonation. Smooth and creamy without a doubt, coffee and unsweetened chocolate come to mind at the first taste. Fruity twang in the middle of black currants, this twang doubles with a roasted grain flavour that is perfectly balanced. Hints of charcoal and earth run middle to end as the alcohol as kicks in with a warming estery character. Finishes slightly sweet with vague remnants of roastedness.

Not as complex as I thought it would be but that is finish being that a brew with such strength can be so drinkable. I’ll going back to this beer for sure.

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Photo of atrocity
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of smithj4
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of vfgccp
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of woodychandler
4.34/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I CAN't believe how many different CANned beers are available. The CANQuest began as a lark and has become an obsession. CAN you dig it?

First, this lion came roaring out of its CAN! It looked like oil from the current slick in the Gulf of Mexico, courtesy of BP. The head was outrageous, demanding my immediate attention lest its deep-brown rise above the lip of the glass and spill onto my computer. Two fingers that eventually tamed themselves and sat atop the beer like a real lion on a stool. F**ing rampant animals! I despise that! This cat had a real bite on the nose. Deeply roasty with a bit of dark chocolate sweetness, if that passes for sweet for you. Color was ebony black with the light penetration of a black hole. NONE! Zee-roh! Mouthfeel was somewhat thin for a stout, but the taste was dark chocolate, raisins, prunes, my morning coffee (I am a retired US Navy sailor), and smoke. This tasted like the aftermath of a house fire smells. Wow! The finish was dry, smoky, worth seeking out. Good kitty!

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Photo of TMoney2591
4.18/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

Pours a lovely brown-black, with a healthy layer of tan frothy head. The smell holds fragments of chocolate, molasses, prunes, figs, and espresso. The taste starts off with a chocolatey maltiness, but then progesses into those figs, plums, and currants, finishing with a tinge of light coffe and brown sugar at the back of the tongue. The body is more medium than heavy, runs very smoothly, and finishes nice and lightly, making for a highly tasty and drinkable stout.

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Lion Stout from Ceylon / Lion Brewery Limited
3.93 out of 5 based on 1,619 ratings.
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