Jaywalker Imperial Stout
Walking Man Brewing Co.

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Russian Imperial Stout
Ranked #171
Ranked #4,104
4.32 | pDev: 6.25%
Walking Man Brewing Co.
Washington, United States
Reviews: 27 | Ratings: 35 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of VashonGuy
4.16/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Beer Junction.

This is a new version of a beer first brewed in 2013. This time it's up to 14% ABV! It's spent a full year in whiskey barrels, according to the Walking Man Brewer on hand. And that year in the barrels shows, in the big bourbon aroma, in the taste, and of course in the ABV. It's doesn't have the dark roasted character that I'd expect in a stout; the underlying beer seems pleasant but a little too sweet. But if you want a bourbon bomb, this is your baby.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
4.13/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Poured jet black with a tan head, great carbonation, sluggish and robust pour. A good deal of head retention provides some moderate lacing

S: A zing of booze, roastiness, leather and bitter chocolate and coffee blend. Smells promising but it smells like a heater too!

T: Immediate and copious amounts of char and dark chocolate with some anise. A pungent booze sting lets you know this beer is no laughming matter. The chocolate gives may to more char, coffee, leather and anise while the finish is heat, dry, char, anise and leather

M: Medium-Full and well carbonated. Not really creamy per se but definitely a full flavored and robust RIS.

O: This beer will have you Jaywalking after a few. It was extremely tasty and potent. Overall, i really liked the anise/leather additions. It seemed complex.

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Photo of Rifugium
4.05/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at their brewpub

2010 vintage had in Dec. '11.

Poured an unexpected dark reddish brown with a small layer of rusty head. Pretty standard aroma of dark malts, coffee, cocoa, some subdued hops detectable. Taste was bready with dark malts, notes of coffee, cocoa, hints of dark fruit, mildly hopped, and I could swear I picked up some bourbon in there, even though I'm not sure if this beer ever spent time in a barrel. It was a year old, so I suppose it's possible, though the beer list didn't specify. Very, very smooth, boozy, heavy-medium mouthfeel, and quite a nice drink overall.

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Photo of gregshead
4.18/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

enjoyed at the beer stein in Eugene Oregon:

A: dark black. Half finger of head that dissipates really quick

S: lots of booze more than hops among a dark roared smell. If there is a burnt smell it's lost in the stron alcohol presence

T: for an RIS I expected a little more hop presence. Strong alcohol presence but it's fitting for this one.

M: at first it tastes a little thin but this may be the mirage of the alcohol burn that follows and tingled my tongue. I love my strong stouts.

O: a great sipper on a cold night in Oregon. Be warned this one is a strong bold stout that wan to kick your butt.

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Photo of ditmier
4.23/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Handbottle from my man Buckeyeboy!!! Pours thick like chocolate syrup, almost black with a small tan head..aroma is hersheys cocoa, slight metal, vanilla, heat, plenty of burnt charcoal bitterness...flavour follows pretty closely, very smooth in the mouth, bitter baking chocolate, vanilla, coffee and charcoal...some dk fruit maltiness hiding in there, dry dark malt and bitterness on the finish...definitely worth the trip, thanks Jeremy!

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Photo of MADhombrewer
4.08/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2010 version poured into a tulip

Appearance- Black with a dark, espresso crema colored head that ends in a light film and ring. Little lacing.

Smell- Alcohol, dark chocolate are right up front. Afterward is a little coffee, leather and a hint of anise.
Taste- Lots of dark, bitter chocolate accompanied with alcohol. The chocolate levels out to a creamy milk shake taste as it hits the middle of your tounge. Then hits you at the last minute with a bit of a hop bitterness. The alcohol really starts to come out as it warms. There is also a chalkyness to it later on.

Mouthfeel - Very good mouthfeel. Heavy and thick, but not at all over the top.

Drinkability- For a 13% beer it tastes more like 9% until it warms. Then the alcohol comes out and it becomes a sipper. Still very good though.

Hopsbreath literally dropped this growler off on my door step without me knowing it. He really needs to work on his kindness.

This is the first time I have had this and if I can help it, it won't be my last. Thanks Jason! I will get you back.

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Photo of boMD
4.23/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Have had this on tap a few times now. Overall, I think it's always had a great mouthfeel, especially for the 11%+ alcohol. Pours black with a thick brown head. Strong, roasted malt and chalky characters on the nose. Really thick palate that had a nice sting to it from the alcohol burn. Chocolate syrup flavors with thick, robust, roasted malt, grains played like rice that you may find in milk chocolate. A coffee liquor tone towards the finish. If you like your stouts big, roasty, boozy with coffee and cocoa flavors, this is the one for you.

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Photo of Arbitrator
4.62/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Chilled growler into a glass. Had the '10 courtesy of ramnuts and the '08 thanks to Bird.

A: Well carbed out of both growlers. A hard pour produces a finger of dark mocha head on its pitch black body, which slowly retreats into a thick cap on the brew. It leaves some lace as it falls, and during sips there are nice curtains.

S: Anise, chocolate, red wine, roast. The red wine was initially very strange, but as the beer warmed and hit its stride, that characteristic blended well with the rest of the bouquet. Unfortunately, warming also brings out a slight ethanol nose, though not enough to make a serious complaint about. It's also slightly fruity (banana and apricot).

T: Starts off with traditional flavors for the style: anise, chocolate, dark fruits (specifically plums). But it has a strong vinous presence mid-taste that is unusual, yet very welcome for the style. I had to check and make sure this wasn't wine- or port-chip aged a la Kate the Great, which was the natural comparison that sprung to mind. Some stone fruit presence in the finish; it adds a nice touch to the otherwise dark, heavy flavors. Bittering hops (citrus and earth) stand out when the beer is cold, but as it warms, they serve only to offset the sweeter flavors without dominating the profile.

M: Medium-full bodied. Not the most viscous beer I've had, but it's quite thick and is in the upper echelon. Carbonation pleasantly lightens the load of this big boy. A small heat is noted, but it's not a surprise for something that's almost 12%.

D: Once this warmed up and hit its stride, it was immensely drinkable and pleasant. A top-notch imperial stout. This reminded me of Kate the Great, and I'd give the nod to Jaywalker, personally.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.37/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to mtunnell and zimmerbloke for answering the call and inviting me up to their crib in Milwaukee to share this beer. Served in a New Belgium tulip.

A - A hard pour yields a quarter-finger of dark tan foam, which then settles to a thick ring and partial skim cap, leaving behind small splotches of lace. The body is an ominous pitch black.

S - The initial aroma that I got was heavy in vinous and tart cherry notes - I was worried this had gotten infected somehow. However, my second whiff confirmed that this is just a very fruit-heavy RIS, with a Black Albert-esque yeast profile that provided estery banana, cherry cordials, and red wine notes. As it warms a large does of anise emerges, along with some light roasted malt character.

T - The taste is a little more in line with what I expect from an American-made RIS, with heavy anise, chocolate, and some dark fruits, prunes, and light fruity oxidation notes that were reminiscent of Owd Mac's. There is some peripheral suggestion of the massive amount of bittering hops used, with a hint of citrus and floral notes. There's perhaps a hint of alcohol when it reaches room temperature, but nothing out of line for the listed 12.7%.

M - Big, thick, viscous, and chewy. There's pleasant carbonation that is sufficient to keep it from getting too syrupy, although if you got this in growler format I'd recommend not taking too long to finish your pour.

D - While this might not be my "go-to" stout out over some of the other excellent beers I've had, I appreciated the extremely unique vinous character. I could have sworn this was wine or port barrel-aged, and the fact that Walking Man coaxed this wide range of flavors out of the usual ingredients is pretty impressive. I had two pours, and would have had more if there had been any left.

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Photo of nkersten
4.35/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Made the drive up to Milwaukee to share this with a few others, thanks again for the generosity! Poured vigorously into a New Belgium glass, color is jet black with a thin tan head that settles to a bubbly ring. Smell is licorice first and slightly fruity yeast following - definitley did not expect that. Some banana and lots of dark roasted malts. Taste is lots of toasted malts up front, very sweet, cherries, and slightly fruity, hoppy bitterness in the finish with just a touch of alcohol. It was really an excellent balance for such a big beer. Mouthfeel was very thick and coating with a light carbonation. The flavors melded together so well that this beer was very drinkable.

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Photo of hopsbreath
4.6/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had a tulip of the 2010 vintage at Walking Man last night. ABV listed on the chalkboard was 12.7%. I knew quickly that I needed to get a growler of this to better analyze. That growler was split tonight with my wife (TulipSnifter) into our matching set of Portsmouth snifters. Who needs KtG anyway!

A: Black with cherry red edges, a hard pour yields tight chocolate mousse like head that recedes to nothing, the tiniest bit of lacing is surprising for the ABV.

S: Vinous and red wine like, ETOH comes out more as it warms, there's a little dark chocolate.

T: Again the wine characteristics are there, but this time a wave of marshmallowy chocolate washes over. Some sweet cherries add richness to this complex profile that my palate cannot do justice. Lightly floral hops round this out.

M: Pretty thin for what this is. The low carbonation is just enough. Man is this dry with no gumminess noted. This just gets better and better.

D: High for what it is. I had half a growler tonight. This is an extremely unique beer and unlike any other Imperial stout I've had yet. Without trepidation I'm going to call this the best big stout within the vicinity of Portland. That's right Abyss... I'm looking right at you.

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Photo of TulipSnifter
4.28/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This growler was filled for me yesterday.

Appearance: Dark beer with barely some reddish brown edges. The initial pour a tan head but that was gone within five minutes.
Smell: When I smelled it cold, I got a lot more light fruity smells. However, as I let it warm up I got more chocolate and alcohol in the nose.
Taste: When this was cold I couldn't really taste the alcohol at all and I thought it was surprisingly light and fruity with maybe some chocolate and wine. As it warmed it became a little heavier and pulled more chocolate and coffee. I know this may sound strange but I just took a sip and it tasted like a sip of milk. Crazy complex.
Mouthfeel: This has a heavy body.
Drinkability: At first it was very tempting to drink this faster than I should. As you let it warm, you remember this is an 12.7% beer and you should just sip and enjoy.

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Photo of Douglas88
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

So this beer was so special that Eric even rated it. Handbottle thanks to Jeremy- thanks Buckeyeboy. Pours a pure black color with a medium frothy brown head. The aroma was rich and fruity, huge roasted malts. The flavor was heavy and almost oily (awesome), sweet roasted malts, lots of dark fruit, prunes and sweeter fruit, hot and somehow very smooth. A very good Impy. In fact, very damn good.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.44/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Buckeyeboy brought back some tap filled grolsch bottles from his travels and cracked this wonder at the big tasting last weekend... Thanks a ton Jeremy.

Deep brown head... expected black brew... pretty thick looking on the pour.

Nose smells like melted semisweet chocolate.... "boozie tootsie rolls"...

Flavor mirrors the nose with some lite coffee essence thrown in for good measure.. very smooth well integrated... the alcohol is present, yet surprisingly hidden by the waves of chocolate...

On the thick side even for big stouts, but it actually adds to the attractiveness of this brew.

Thanks again Jeremy... you should have taken a bigger cooler and more bottles :-)


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Photo of squaremile
3.88/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Finally got to try this at Saraveza. Pours a deep black, tiny brown head that dissipates but retains some bubbles on top for the entire glass. Nose has some molasses and a touch of espresso. Taste is licorice, molasses, cocoa, with hints of vanilla and bourbon and blueberries, some pine hops emerge near the finish. Has a very chewy mouthfeel and a real lasting alcohol burn on the sides of the mouth and the throat. Not Dark Horizon level alcohol, but it's up there, which limits drinkability. As usual it's a very good beer from Walking Man.

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Photo of sholland119
4.25/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Bailey's Taproom in Portland.

Pours a deep dark black with a thin tan head and some nice lacing.

Coffee, dark chocolate and caramel dominate the nose on this. Very appealing.

Taste is nicely complex. Starts with a caramel sweetness with some coffee and a nice hop bite in the finish.

This beer has a rich, creamy mouthfeel. Drinkability is very good considering the ABV. Alcohol is very well hidden.


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Photo of freeeekyyy
4.52/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer had a nice, smooth feel and could hardly detect the alcohol, despite being 12% abv. Very good beer, would try again. Drinkability was not so great, but mostly just because of the very high alcohol content. Taste was fantastic, it was a bit sweet, and reminded me slightly of a port wine, but with grain.

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Photo of John_M
4.23/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Concordia House the other day. Seeing this beer around always seems to be a sure sign that Winter is on the way.

The beer pours a dark as night black with good head retention and lacing. The foamy head is a lovely coffee colored pillow, and this beer looks quite impressive. The nose is somewhat subdued, but I get a hint of coffee and chocolate.... also a touch of sulfur. On the palate this beer is just wonderful. There are rich flavors of coffee, chocolate and vanilla, with a blast of hoppy bitterness in the finish. The beer has a rather soft, creamy mouthfeel, but this beer has steel in its backbone, and you can tell the abv. is up there. As for the alcohol content, while certainly noticeable (to the point you wouldn't want to sit back and knock back a few of these), it's not at all obtrusive/intrusive, and is pretty well disguised for a beer with this high an abv.

This is an impressive, in your face imperial stout from Walking Man. Very well done.

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Photo of HardTarget
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at the Walking Man, menu noted 12% abv.

Aroma: Chocolate and maple syrup notes with a light alcoholic presence.

Appearance: Opaque black body with thick dark tan collar that lasted and laced.

Flavor: Toffee malt in the best British style. Reminds me of Fuller’s Vintage Ales, rich and tasty. Lightly licorice and chocolate as well.

Mouthfeel: Medium heavy body, smooth texture that’s almost creamy, and a slowly drying finish.

Overall Impression: Toffee malt, creamy, rich and yummy! Firm British notes in this RIS. Very good stuff. If you get a chance, don’t miss it!

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Photo of ElGordo
4.13/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Big ups to Brewbeast1, aka my buddy Pat, for acting as motorcycle courier for a growler fresh from the brewery this past Sunday.
Pours thick and darker than a black steer's tuckus on a moonless prairie night, topped by a couple of fingers of cappuccino head that hang around for a while. Aroma of rich, dark roasted malt, coffee, dark chocolate, and maybe a touch of hazelnut. Palate is super-rich, with roasted malt and coffee flavors blending with a touch of hoppy bitterness and a little hint of dark chocolate and some sweet cream. Body is rich and luxurious, creamy with just a hint of an oily character. A slow-sipper, to be sure, but immensely drinkable for such a strong, assertive ale. Thumbs way up.

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Photo of DaPeculierDane
4.38/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thick black body with a healthy tan head. Boozey aroma of rum, prunes, plums, dried cherries, brown sugar, and smoke. Taste is very strong, rich, and full. Lots of dark fruit goodness and some smoke. Boozey and warming in a sweet way like rum. Figs, prunes, and cherries. Some coffee and caramel. Nice short finish. Very smooth and drinkable for its 12% ABV size. Very full flavored yet easy to drink. Great beer.

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Photo of msubulldog25
4.77/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On-tap at Concordia Ale House, Portland, OR. $3.75/pint.

First requested to try a sample. I think I knew before the first taste that this would be a good one, great look and superb smell. An order for a full pint soon followed.

A: Thick, nearly black. Faint tan/orange head (like a toasted marshmellow) and some clingy lace.

S: Wonderful roasted coffee, chocolate, ripe cherry, some alcohol. A lingering husky smokiness, too. I didn't detect as much of the sweet maltiness I sometimes find in those big RIS aromas. Rich & complex.

T: Very chocolatey, full of roasted coffee, notable smoky character. Superbly well-balanced hop bitterness tones down what could have been an overtly sweet big beer. Still caramel sweetness comes through and helps prolong these wonderful flavors. A terrific Imperial Stout.

M: Full body and creamy mouthfeel. Big pleasing flavors, no intense aftertaste, either sweet or bitter. Just a rich, satisfyingly smooth beer.

D: A top-notch Imperial Stout; extremely smooth, intensely flavorful, easy to drink. I plan to enjoy this version from Walking Man again & again.

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Photo of Crosling
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

GABF 2005. The first beer at the festival. My notes were very similar to Aubrey’s. It had a really nice aroma, which is hard considering those little glasses and one ounce pours. The mouthfeel was tremendous and chewy. It was not destroyed by excessive hops, but nicely balanced. It was very vinous and intensely fruity, with raisin, charred plum, chocolate and roast flavors. Went back for seconds three or four times.

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Photo of imrichbeeeatch
4.36/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Was fortunate enough to taste this over the weekend. Must be a new batch because the chalk board at the pub said 12.7% ABV. WOW!!!

Huge creamy, espresso-like head on top of a opaque black beer. I thought it was a little cold, and might have hindered the aroma, however, it was still nice. Sweet malt, huge roast, alcohol, slightly smokey, rich coco, and a slight hint of dark fruit (plums or dark cherries). First sip is slightly alcoholic, then quickly turns sweet and malty. Rich roast character of coffee and chocolate. I thought it could use more of this character, but as it warmed it came out a little more. Also, as it warmed, the alcohol seemed to go away. The body was perfect. I've had a few Imp. Stouts and they almost always feel too heavy, like syrup. This was perfect, present but respectable.

Beautiful beer, but if it is new (which I think it is) it needs a little age. Will be back to taste this next time they put it on.

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Photo of Thrasher
4.48/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A giant beer that was incredibly easy to drink. Jaywalker poured from the growler in a shade of midnight black. The head rose with large, milkshake bubbles in shades of tan, wapiti (elkskin), and an orangey color like the burnt top of creme brulee. The lace dwindled to a very small ring and left only the faintest wisps of lace. The aroma was forceful but nuanced, with a strong chocolate ice cream element, and tints of whiskey, irish cream, and healthy roastiness. An initial large swallow gave evidence of all these flavors, followed by a buoyant green herbal flavor, most likely from the hops, but in a way that seemed unusual to me. There was perhaps even a slight mint element, which married well with the chocolate flavors. The malts were, of course, heavily chocolatey, with big helpings of coffee, caramel, and toffee. Some plummy fig flavors, and a light smokiness, but none of the vanilla or sherry flavors I have discerned in similar imperial stouts. Over the course of the pint, some twinges of dark meat, tar, and soot were evident, as well as a more appetizing brown sugar quality and a robust mapley-ness. Despite all the things going on in this beer, the mouthfeel was quite thin for an imperial stout, not at all syrupy; it felt comfortable on the tongue, followed by a slight prickle on the swallow. Towards the finish, the alcohol came into play, but it was entirely subliminal and drew no attention to itself. The finish itself was short, clean, and decisive, although big fruity plum burps came later. The herbal bitterness was generally restrained, as was the malt sweetness. Indeed, restraint, on the whole, was the keynote of this beer, and maybe the greatest contributor to its success (imp. stouts can often be over-the-top). Yeah, Jaywalker grabbed my attention for sure, but it was also a balanced and drinkable beer despite its immense proportions. Strangely, I preferred it at a cooler temperature, as I felt the fruity esters became overwhelming as it got warmer. A thoroughly enjoyable beer, both inspiring and relaxing. Again, big thanks to HiroProtagonist for sharing the goods!

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Jaywalker Imperial Stout from Walking Man Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 35 ratings