Fish Tale Poseidon's Imperial Stout | Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub

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157 Ratings

Brewed by:
Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub
Washington, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 05-17-2002

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 157 |  Reviews: 138
Photo of TurdFurgison
3.53/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had right after a 2001 BA Poseidon's at an after-Christmas tasting, both courtesy of Masterski (thanks Alex!). This was a 12oz bottle, consequently small pours for everyone.

It poured dark black and opaque with a lot of tan foam. Pretty similar to the aged BA version in appearance alone.

The smell is not too similar, this is fresher (a plus) but less complex (a minus), and in many ways seemed kindo of pedestrian. Cocoa and roasted malts, maybe just a hint of raisin or plum. These all sound good but together it didn't seem so special without the wine barrel aging.

I felt the cocoa came through the strongest up front, with a lasting roasty bitterness in the aftertaste. A medium body, again not bad but not spectacular.

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Photo of jrallen34
3.28/5  rDev -18%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle provided by Alex to compare with the ba version. This one was greatly outclassed, and that little bottle barely got touched...Dark brown pour, with a small white head, not much to look at...The aroma is so-so with burnt malt, caramel and chocolate...The taste is more burnt notes, just not very good. Coffee, grains, and alcohol.

One of the worst stouts of the night we had, I wouldn't go out of the way for it.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.35/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed on 3/26/2010. Bottle. Pours black with a small ring of tan head. Aroma of sweet roasted malt, charred malt, sweet molasses, vanilla, booze. Flavor is similar with very sweet, heavy roasted and sweet malts, molasses, sweet dark fruits. Heavy palate and somewhat boozy (I was surprised to see the 8% abv). Meh, a little boring for me and I wasn't a fan of the flavor profile.

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

A: poured a dark as night black with a thin brown head and left a little lacing sticking to the glass.

S: it had a nice chocolate cocoa aroma alongside, dark fruits, grains, malts, slight booze, vanilla, and a touch of bourbon from the barrel. There was also some faint maple notes in the background as well.

T/M: the choclate flavors are a bit more potent on the palate with some roastiness but it also had vanilla bourbon accents and slight coffee notes. The brew was full in body with a moderate amount of carbonation which had a sweet, roasty, slight boozy, and silky finish.

D: it drank really good and was very tasty but what I really liked about the beer is that the booze didn't over power the overall flavor making it hard to enjoy.

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Photo of bobsy
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I think Derek said that this one was 4 years old? Either way, cheers for sharing!

Midnight pour with a finger of tan head that left some lace spots as it dropped to a film. Coffee, tobacco, chocolate and dark fruit on the nose has it kicking it old school. Flavour follows faithfully, with the roast all in balance, and a bit of smokiness alleviating it slightly. Moderate acidic bitterness, and restrained hopping. Body is lighter than many examples of the style, and I feel closer to the original intent of the style. Makes it more drinkable, which is dangerous for a well-concealed 10%!

Pretty much a classic RIS, and in my mind it seems closer to the original template of they style than a lot of the bigger more sought after examples you'll find on BA. Its certainly well done, and I hope my scores justify that, but on a personal level, the more of these big imperials I have, the more I appreciate the smaller stuff.

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Photo of 3Vandoo
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very dark Imperial Stout, I could see the darkness from the bottle, It was darker than the brown bottle.

when the bottle popped open, a smell of grape juice came out very strongly, and small raisins.

Her taste was very malty, but with a dark rich coffee flavor coming out with a moka kind of aftertaste.

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Photo of aahynick
3.95/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

about 60 degree F into a brandy snifter
A- deep opaque black. Fine light tan head.

S- mld citrus aroma with rich chocolate and molasses notes.

T- mild black patent bitterness with lingering smokiness

M- medium body with decent smoothness

D- very nice but a little expensive for the quality level

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Photo of ShogoKawada
3.86/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz into pint glass.

A- Dark brown, nice cascading head, somewhat coffee w/cream-colored and 3 fingers. Settles and sits like a pancake.

S- Roasty, chocolatey. Slight dark fruit twang. Hmmm. Chocolate is most dominant.

T- Smoky, bitter coffee, nice roast to this one. Dark bitter chocolate. Well-composed, harmonious.

M- Lighter than expected, but not too thin. Manages to avoid being too sweet and cloying or thick... unusual but good.

D- High for the style. The nice smoky/bitter coffee and chocolate flavors are well thought-out and the beer is 'light' enough to not weigh down the tongue. Good stuff.

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Photo of morimech
4.44/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Unknown vintage of this 12oz bottle. Date not notched on label. Label states 8% ABV.

Very dark in color with some noticeable sediment coming out of the bottle. One inch of head forms and hangs around for a little while. Some spotty lacing is left on the glass. This RIS smells very good. Hints of chocolate, coffee, dark fruit, and bourbon. This is not barrel-aged but it sort of smells like it has spent sometime in a barrel. I really enjoyed the flavor as well. Not overly sweet or over hopped like some of the Best of Beer Advocate RIS's seem to be (looking right at you Darklord and Darkness). Nicely balanced. The malt comes through nicely with hints of chocolate and coffee, slightly roasted and smokey. Booziness is there but well intergrated into the flavor. Bitterness is moderate to slightly less than moderate. The body is not as full as other RISs but has nice carbonation and texture. Turned out to be one of my favorite RIS beers. I liked the flavor of this one.

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Photo of wildvikes
4.3/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours very dark, with very little head. None, actually.
Aroma is chocolatey, with a noticeable alcohol note, very rum-like.
Flavor is chocolate malt, mild coffee bean and slightly smokey with some alcohol warmth to it. Not as thick as it appears, but not too watery, either. Very drinkable, but still a sipper to enjoy slowly. Alcohol on this undated batch is 8%.

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Photo of mdfb79
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 6/12/10 notes. 2006 vintage, 22 oz. bottle.

a - Pours a dark black with no head or carbonation evident.

s - Smells of chocolate, a bit smokey, roasted malts, oak, and a little booze.

t - Tastes chocolate, smokey, a little bit of coffee, and roasted malts.

m - Has a bit of a watery feel to it. Light to medium body and low carbonation. Quite easy to drink for 10% ABV.

d - I thought this was a pretty nice stout that has held up well. Some nice chocolate and smokey, roasted malts. Would try again.

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Photo of pastradul
4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured in a stone IRS tulip.

very dark brown. A nice mocha head on it, only about a half an inch or so, then it dissipates relatively quick.

the aroma is sweet malt and mocha.

the mouth feel is medium to high body with a good amount of carb.

the taste is similar to the nose. Starts of with a sweet almost milky taste that transtions into a mocha coffee finish.

A good drinking Stout! very happy that I got the bottle, think I will go back to get some more to age.

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Photo of jera1350
4.05/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

No date notched on the side as should be.

Deep black color with a lovely foamy tan head that leaves some nice lacing on the glass.

Smells nicely of hops and Oreo cookies. Chocolate malt and a little cream as well.

Quite roasty with some nice bitter hops, dark chocolate and coffee. The bitterness really appeals to me in a this style. A bit of a chocolate cookie crumb taste. Quite tasty.

A bit thin for the style and extremely dry. The carbonation is soft and slightly creamy for a split second, then the dryness takes over.

Very drinkable, especially at this ABV. Goes down easy and is a solid beer. Not sure if I would buy it again, but I wouldn't turn anyone else away from it. Worth a try.

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Photo of womencantsail
2.74/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

A: A beautiful looking pour from a 12 oz bottle. The beer is black and viscous with a finger's worth of tan head.

S: The smell is a bit of a let down, especially considering my hopes for this beer. There is a fair amount of alcohol and acidity to the nose which sort of overpower even the coffee and chocolate.

T: There isn't any improvement in the flavor, I'm afraid. A strong bitterness to the beer and an almost medicinal astringency. Behind that, the chocolate and coffee flavors do come out, but I'm having trouble getting past the faults.

M: At least the mouthfeel is nice. This is a full bodied beer with low to moderate carbonation.

D: Just too much unwanted and unpleasant bitterness in this beer to overlook it. Hopefully I just got a bad bottle, but as for now, I don't think I'll have this beer again.

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Photo of Bulkman
4.35/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from my notes....had this about a week ago.

12 oz. pour into my Samuel Smith's Imperial pint glass with a 1 finger head that doesn't last, but leaves good lacing. Color is black.

Heavy chocolate & coffee aroma, with nutty overtones & a hint of black licorice.

Strong coffee, dark chocolate & toffee flavor with a lasting bitterness.

Heavy body, coats the tongue with alcohol warmth.

Drinkability is better than the style normally represents, with no biting alcohol presense, just a smoothing warmth. I'd have this again.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.37/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Consumed on 9/29/2009 on tap at Stone. The beer is black with a one finger brown head.

The aroma is a pleasant combination of rich dark and milk chocolate. It's reminiscent of a truffle, with dark fruit notes. I get a touch of coffee, but just a touch. Booze is also at a low level. The chocolate component is very nice.

The beer opens with a balance of dark and milk chocolate and a welcome dash of coffee that lingers in the background. Bitterness is at a moderate level, and sweetness is at a low moderate level. Very nice.

The beer is full bodied with low medium draft carbonation and a creamy, silky mouthfeel. This is a 4.5 drinkability if you're in the mood for a big rich drink. On a day such as this the beer is a 4.0 for me.

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Photo of Bung
4.15/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. Deep brown/black pour, adequate dark cream head, with descent lacing. Roasty aromas, malt and coffee with some mocha, molasses. Taste compliments nicely, with some licorice and slight hop bittering. Almost creamy mouthfeel, especially as it warms. Drinkability is good, especially as it warms. Alcohol very limited presence. Very nice example of the style, not earth shattering, but worth revisiting if available. Solid brew.

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Photo of srandycarter
3.84/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

New review on 22 oz 2006 Vintage 9.03.09

A - Not much head nor lace. As brownish black as you can get.

S - Burnt coffee, chocolate, of course malt.

T - Smoke, cocoa, licorice.

M - Round, good balance and carb. Nice coating.

D - Still a big beer to try and session. Would tire easily. Better experience than last time, though.

3.13.08 Review below...

Appearance 3, Smell 4 Taste 2.5 Mouth 4 Drink 3

A- Dark, nice, light mocha thin head. Lacing thin but persistent.

S - Burnt coffee, chocolate, of course malt.

T - Astringent, bitter, no sweetness or roundness, not pleasant.

M - Good coating, carb, etc.

D - Man, for $7 a pop for a 12 oz, My stout is exponentially better!

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Photo of GRG1313
4.05/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Vintage of this one unknown. Found recently on a shelf at one of the local outlet. Pours a dark brown/black with a thick and nice tan head that quickly reduces to a nice single layer of small bubbles.

Nose of sweet dark chocolate, sweet espresso and black licorice.

Mouth follows nose nicely with a nice creamy mouthfeel, good body and really nice balance. Dark unsweetened chocolate gives way to pleasant bitter coffee and licorice flavors. Complex and layered.

Finish is dark chocolate and espresso with a somewhat unique sweet dark chocolate that follows a hit of espresso/chocolate and some bitter grapefruit hops.

All very pleasant and complex. Surprised there is not more hype and/or discussion about this one. Good.

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

06 vintage. 12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Darkest possibly shade of brown, nearly black. Some amber highlights when backlit. Nice dark tan head struggles to form through the viscous liquid. Aromas of cocoa powder, graham crackers, iced coffee, and prune/raisin fruitiness. Flavor is loads of roasted barley but not in an acrid way. Lesser notes of caramel, dark chocolate, graham crackers, raisins, figs, and prunes. Slightly acidic, solid roasted bitterness, dry without much astringency. Hugely flavorful but not crushingly thick-bodied. Very easy to drink. Damn good RIS.

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Photo of gford217
3.4/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle, 2006 vintage I believe, courtesy of dave12285 poured into a tulip.

Pours dark opaque black with only the faintest hint of light showing through the edges when held up to light. The head is small and tan, fading quickly to a tiny ring and leaving no lacing.

The aroma is fairly one-dimensional, with the dark, sweet roasted malts dominating the nose altogether. It's definitely sweet with some chocolate, licorice and dark fruits.

The taste let me down a bit as it seems to be a watered down version of the aroma. The sweetness isn't nearly as deep, with the chocolate malts and licorice present, but in less amounts. The finish is chalky with a bitterness that lingers through the aftertaste.

The mouthfeel is light, almost watery, with low carbonation and much less body than I would expect from an RIS.

The nose had me looking up but this stout ended up a little too bland and watery to be great. It's a decent example of the style but nothing to bring me back for another one.

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Photo of ClockworkOrange
3.9/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A 22 ounce bomber bottle poured into my nonic pint glass. The stout appears an opaque dark brown color with at least two fingers of foamy dark ecru head. The head lingers on and on before settling to a half inch thick ring. Nose and flavor are of rich roasted grain, slightly smokey, bittersweet and dark chocolates, medium roasted coffee beans, dark fruits such as cherries, figs, raisins. This stout falls somewhere between medium and full bodied with a lingering bitter roastiness through the finish. Glad I was able to enjoy this one.

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Photo of DiabolikDUB
4.03/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Bailey's Taproom poured into Snifter glass.

Pours straight midnight black with a creamy mocha colored head that lasts and eventually forms a thick ring around the glass. Aroma is milk chocolate and coffee. Very pungent. Flavor is tart fruit, chocolate, roasted malts and a touch of coffee. Its a medium bodied beer that is fairly slick. Extremely enjoyable although maybe a little sweet.

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Photo of joe1510
4.08/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz Bottle

This impy stout comes courtesy of a great trader, errantnight, thanks for all the trades Derek! Poseidon is ink black with no hope for light to shine through. A soft pour produces a velvety two finger mocha head that shows some good retention, falling no lower than a one finger cap with a fat collar. The lacing left behind is close to the sheet variety with a couple airy holes here and there.

The nose on this RIS is loaded with big, roasty stout complexity. Roasted malts play the major role with a smattering of slightly underripe dark berries, some faint nuttiness, dark chocolate and fudge all coming along at different times during each whiff I take. There is a dash of cream here and a pinch of booze there. There is a solid layer of booziness but it's very clean. I could get lost in the aroma of this brew.

The flavor stands up to the aroma well with all the big complexities. I'll keep it short and sweet because the aroma basically sums it up. Rich molten fudge comes through thick on the swallow and the alcohol is a bit tamer than I expected but otherwise the nose led me in the right direction. This beer comes together really well and shows a great many layers.

The body is rich and decadent with an incredibly velvety mouthfeel. The carbonation is on the low and soft side which makes this beer so smooth. Alcohol tickles the back of my throat and there's a slight stick on each drink.

This RIS goes down incredibly easy. The silky mouthfeel and decadent flavors keep it flowing while the lower than usual (for style) abv gives me permission to have another. Poseidon is a seriously good brew, without a doubt.

I'm very impressed with this RIS from the Northwest. If this is still sold in 750s, I want some. Twelve ounces just isn't enough of this delicious stout. Thanks for the bottle Derek, send more soon!

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Photo of prototypic
4.15/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to csmiley for this one. Love getting beer I never knew existed. Thanks, man.

Poseidon's very ominous. It's very dark brown in color, nearly black. No light's getting through even at the edges. A firm mocha colored cap sits on top and easily reaches two fingers in depth. It was slow to recede and left sticky strands of lace clinging to the glass. Impressive stuff.

The nose is equally impressive. It's loaded with sweet chocolate and roasted malt aromas. I can't tell which is stronger. Suffice it say that this one is malted by the gods. At least it smells that way. Coffee and strong espresso notes add quality depth. Alcohol is easily noticeable and could be a little much. I'll reserve judgment on that point for the moment. Overall, it's very impressive. I didn't know what to expect and I'm very pleasantly surprised.

The flavor doesn't have quite the same impact, but it is very good. The first sip confirms it's heavily malted stature. Roasted malts are very flavorful and taste great against the sweet fudge backdrop of chocolate malts. A strong coffee presence certainly rounds the flavor out well. It's not as pronounced as the malt components, but it's very strong and effective. A surprising amount of hop bitterness surges toward the finish. It's a very welcome addition to the mix. The only drawback to the flavor here is the overly noticeable alcohol. It has a definite warming effect and is surprising for an 8% abv beer (as my bottle notes). Otherwise, it has a nice, powerfully malted flavor that's bolstered by strong coffee and hop flavors. Very, very good.

The body feels a little thin (even after it warms a little). It's smooth and carbonation is light, but it'd be better with a little more body. Drinkability is good, but is a little limited by the alcohol presence. It comes across as bigger than it really is and runs a tad too warm.

Fish Brewing's Poseidon is a surprisingly good Imperial Stout. It's a little too boozy and warm, but is otherwise a big time malty brew with a lot of flavor and character. The booziness problem is amplified by the fact that it's only an 8% beer. It's really not strong enough to warrant that, but nonetheless it's here. Iron out that small kink and you've got one stellar stout here. Highly recommended as it is.

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Fish Tale Poseidon's Imperial Stout from Fish Brewing Company / Fishbowl Brewpub
Beer rating: 4 out of 5 with 157 ratings