Big Eddy Russian Imperial Stout | Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company

very good
487 Reviews
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Big Eddy Russian Imperial StoutBig Eddy Russian Imperial Stout

Brewed by:
Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by jj21 on 10-27-2007

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Reviews: 487 | Ratings: 1,277
Photo of yuenglingfan101
5/5  rDev +30.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Nice brownish blackish color with a brownish head. Taste of coffee, chocolate among others. Smells heavenly. Very crisp feeling in the mouth and smooth drinkabilty going all the way down. Definitely a good beer to have a good day or when you had it up to your eyeballs at work

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
5/5  rDev +30.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance - pours a thick, oily black into the SA glass. Two fingers of richly dark mocha foam form up, making a creamy smooth cover across the top with a various assortment of bubbles. The slowly receding head leaves almost a solid sheer of lace behind. Wow.

Aroma - monstrously rich roasted, chocolatey aroma with heavy deep fruits and tobacco, maybe a side of soy. Slightly smoky, totally delicious smelling.

Taste - huge roasty malts, oh mercy. Sweet, dark coffee, chocolate, all enhanced by some well-hidden abv. Very intense flavors everywhere, no flaws that I can tell. The swallow is chocolatey and warm, the finish is roasty, sweet, and begs for another sip.

Mouthfeel - heavy, smooth and coating as I hoped and expected. The carbonation is there, but well-beaten down by the body.

Drinkability - a top shelf RIS that can challenge any other in a blind taste test. Thanks a ton to pimpp for the bottle, I'll be on the lookout for this one next time it comes around.

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Photo of nlmartin
5/5  rDev +30.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Its been a long time since a beer inspired me to write a beer review. The beer was lightly chilled and served in an Imperial Nonic.

Appearance: The beer poured an impenetrable to light blackness. The head is about a finger and half. The head of the beer is the color of lightly creamed coffee. The lacing on the beer leaves nice concentric rings down my glass.

Smell: Good gods!... Leinenkugel hits it out of the park. The beer delivers on the expected dark roasted and toasted aromas of coffee, chocolate, a whiff of smokeyness, dark fruity sweetness, raisans, plums, bourbon or perhaps rum, molasses. Well played!...

Taste: This beer delivers in the flavor department. The expected dark chocolate and darkly roasted and toasted malt. Then the beer goes kind of fruity in a swell way. The middle of the flavor has the flavor of rum soaked berries and cherries. The bitterness returns and finishes off the beer.

Mouthfeel: The beer has a very pleasing low carbonated full body. The flavors last a long while. The alcohol is a little hot but in a pleasing fashion.

Drinkability: SOB I bought two bottles of this while I was in Michigan. The other bottle is my wifes. This beer met and exceeded all my expectations for a Russian Imperial Stout. The beer left my glass at a distressing pace. I wasnt disappointed with this beer. If you like Russian Imperial Stouts you wont be either. Well played Leinenekugel!...


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Photo of Idrinksomuch
5/5  rDev +30.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!! I love this stuff!!!

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Photo of twbrewer
4.97/5  rDev +29.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A-Pours jet black with no light getting through,has a dark brown head 1/4" thick,very little/no lacing.

S-Smells of black strap molasses,dark chocolate malts,plums,raisins and a slight hint of congac,and a touch of hops.

T-The molasses taste hits you right away then a nice hop bitterness that fades into a bitter dark chocolate and roasted coffee finish.So many malts!

M-This is a thick syrupy,chewy beer.It has a very smooth feel on the palate and very little carbonation.

D-I could sip on this all night,very pleasant warming effect,very good balance between hops and all of the malts.I put a couple away for a later date,but when their gone this beer will be sadly missed.Please brew more,thanks.

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Photo of milljs
4.93/5  rDev +28.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance is a thick viscous black with a cappuccino-like foam crown.
Aroma is of molasses, coffee, leather, and wood with subtle spicy notes.
Taste is aligned to the aroma. Wonderful and full of complexity.
Mouthfeel and finish are full and lingering in a fantastic way. I love this beer.

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Photo of BarleyStud
4.92/5  rDev +28.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I was introduced to this stout at Prop's On Long Lake in WI. Where I was "warned" that it would cost $4 per glass. It was served in small snifter glass, with the typical black color and 3/4 " head. The smell was hard to find because smoking in the bar was allowed, although banned (finally) in WI.

The taste blew me away. It tasted like chocolate covered cherries. I have since tasted it rom the bottle and it was not nearly as good. As with most, the draft taste was much better.

If you ever see Big Eddy on tap, keep buying it and call someone to help you get your butt back home.

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Photo of mataelbata
4.85/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

this one has been retired for two years and the tavern I went to just tapped it!! I believe the aging made this one even better. I was baffled to discover the Leinenkugels brewed such a beast. Too bad it's retired!! Thank you Happy Gnome for cellaring this one and bringing it out when no one in the world has it on tap.

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Photo of dpgoblejr
4.85/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Great dark brown brew with beautiful frothy khaki colored cap. Lacing up and down the sides. Licorice, roast, char, tobacco, and minimal chocolate make up the aroma. Taste is of roasted malts, ash, slight coffee with some cocoa mixed about. Not super thick but medium bodied enough for me to enjoy. This was overall a fantastic imperial stout that more than surpassed my expectations. Enjoy!

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Photo of blackie
4.82/5  rDev +25.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

ah, Leinerkugen

a: the low head is a gorgeous color somewhere between mocha and rusted brick, over a black colored beer, retention is light and easily roused by each sip.

s: Loaded with semisweet chocolate pudding and thick molasses aromas. Thick with every manner of roasted sugar and chocolaty grain imaginable. Chocolate rum fruitcake. Dark fruits (cherries, prunes, dates) macerated in a boozy malt reduction, stirred into oozing dark chocolates infused with a shot of espresso. Both charred and fresh sweet tobaccos. You can tell the earthy hops are there in good number, but they are absolutely dominated by the roasted malts and fruits.

m: smooth, low carbonation and an absurdly thick body...nice

t: An absolute bomb of deep, bittersweet chocolate and coffee, dried cherries and prunes soaked in malty booze. Thick with various liquors of concentrated dark fruits...blackberry!, prune, cherry, date; blended with bold roasted grain and dark chocolate flavors. The finish just doesn't quit, with deep astringent roasts and molasses lingering. Hop flavors take a backseat, but keep things in check pretty well...definitely mild and towards the English side. Honestly, I feel bad for not giving a 5 here.

d: Totally different from any RIS I've ever had, save for perhaps the Samuel Smith's...though this would be comparable to that beer concentrated four times over. Dangerously easy drinkability, considering. I love this beer.

a bottle of black gold under a dirty rainbow

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Photo of jjanega08
4.82/5  rDev +25.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A= Pours a nice black color that looked a little light at the begining of the pour but now doesn't let any light through the edges and has a nice finger high brown head on it that holds some pretty steady retention and solid lacing... Not bad for a Linie's.

S= First thing I notice is maple syrup. Does this beer have any maple in it??? No hops to it really just tons of maple. I guess I can break that down a little more for those who don't know what real maple syrup smells like... A little roast to it. Tons of sweetness with a touch of vanilla. A swirl gives me a little alcohol in the nose but not much. This is the most mapley beer I've ever smelled. Even more mapley than those made with maple syrup.

T= Well the taste isn't like maple syrup exactly but it's still pretty damn good. The first thing I notice is a bit of a hop presence to it. Not much but just enough to make me know they are there which is a lot more than most Impy Stouts can say. Then I get a decent amount of roast followed quickly by the nice maple syrup taste. The finish is just like syrup. I get a little smoke from it as well in the middle and end. Pretty impressive actually. This is a one of a kind tasting Impy Stout but it's also a delicious one at that.

M= A little high on the carbonation for an Impy stout but nothing out of the ordinary for anyone who drinks beer. This is prolly the biggest downfall of this beer actually.

D= Wow, where did this baby come from. I've disliked everything I've ever had from Linie's so far but this one is outstanding. Maybe one of the best RIS I've ever had. Complex as hell and easily drinkable. I was seriously debateing even buying one of these but now I'm for sure going to the store to buy many more. World Class beer.

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Photo of wgk
4.75/5  rDev +23.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

OMG! From a bottle produced by Leinie's...a PART OF MILLER Coors? How nice is that? When I thought that the best they would ever do again was maybe an ice cold Coors silver bullet in the hot summer sun in the middle of August with 90% relative humidity when there just wasn't anything else around.

Despite the fact that it is very nice, I have to say it was a bit over-priced at nearly $10 for a 4 pack.

I am not very well seasoned with stout, yet, so I am going to have to leave this as just a comment for what it is worth.

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Photo of jjayjaye
4.75/5  rDev +23.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A crazy random throw from 'zillatron...many thanks!!!
06-'07 version pours an opaque darkness with a generous dark brown head that decomposes in 3D like an ice cream sundae leaving spotty patterns of lacing. The smell is nothing but stunning super rich mocha licorice boozy roasted malt. The mouth feel is perfect...heavy, thick, full bodied, creamy smooth with a monstrously thick coating texture...holy cow!! Who brewed this??? are you kidding me??? ...and there isn't another batch in the tank why??? HELLO!!! It leaves you with an exceptional dark deep raisin dark fig date experience from the full flavored taste. An incredible drinker!! Where the h&^* did this one come from/ go to? Wow...this is one of the best ales that I've had the opportunity to consider!

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Photo of jj21
4.68/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Possibly one of the most (if not the most) anticipated releases from a Wisconsin Brewery I remember. Served on tap at the Horse & Plow in Kohler. Poured into a snifter black as night that lies still at first then created a perfect deep brown head. Head diminishes leaving a great lace across the top. Aromas of Coffee, Chocolate and dark fruit with hints of Vanilla and a slight wisp of alcohol. Thick slightly sticky mouth feel but both are kept in check. Not over the top like a lot of RIS seem to be. The same can be said for the flavor. I was surprised how suppressed the alcohol presence is. Bitter coffee is prominent with a perfect amount of malt and hops. So easy to drink it's scary!

Fantastic job Leinenkugel Brewing Company- Listen to the beer geeks, not your accountants. Keep rolling out the Big Eddy releases!!!

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Photo of gmfessen
4.66/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, Big Eddy RIS appears black but upon further inspection is actually a very deep brown; the head is thin, creamy-looking and mocha in color. Nose is definitely that of a big beer! Fumes of alcohol, dark fruits like figs and dates, molasses and brown sugar, licorice; it's all in there. Flavor reflects the same complex, fruity-molasses alcohol whif of the nose. Alcohol is well covered but also mouth numbing. Mouthfeel is full bodied and chewy with a minimal yet creamy carbonation. Overall, I would say Leine's did good with this one! I'm always a fan of their beers but doing a big beer like this is a different game from the norm - great job Leine's!

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Photo of maximum12
4.65/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had this twice now on tap at one of the finer beer bars in the Twin Cities, Stub & Herb's. Good to finally meet John bartending on Friday night.

This is the best Leinie's beer...ever. Followed some of the patter about it being to expensive and/or not selling well enough to make again. Too bad. This isn't just a solid stout made by a solid regional brewery cautiously feeling it's way into big beers...this RIS is really, really good. It belongs at the head of not-quite-divine stouts like Bell's Expedition, Speedway, & Blackout. Which essentially means if I could drink it every day, I'd choose to 3-4 times per week.

Big Eddy is rich, full, black as sin, with a great head. It's fullness isn't belly-weighing like lesser stouts, but retains a certain lightness of being that allows one (me) to knock back a couple, slowly, without feeling like I've ingested a small dolphin. It also boasts that best of RIS mouthfeel, creamy & sensual.

I love this beer. As long as Stub's & others (wonder if the Nile still has it) keep it on tap, I'll still be hanging around the bar. Leinie's, make this beer again!

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Photo of Mscarpen
4.65/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: very very dark amber with a generous deep brown head. The head alone looks delicious, which it very much is.

Smell: Sweet hops, caramel, sugar oak, and bit of booze.

Taste: dark roasted malt, chocolate for sure, and chocolate alba.. Sour and bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: creamy, viscous, and full bodied.

Overall: a great value beer with strong, bold, complex flavors.

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Photo of Earpe
4.63/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

I agree with "DRINKSOMUCH"...

This is a very good RIS, Dark black color, great smell, dark fruit tones with a nice burnt flavoring, and a hint of chocolate. This is definitely a must try for imperial stout drinkers, at 9.5 ABV, you can't go wrong.... One of my favorites.

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Photo of badbeer
4.58/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours pure black with probably the darkest colored head I've seen, brownish red almost. Head retention is amazing and has incredible lacing. Aroma has molasses, licorice, cherries, chocolate, and a little roastiness. Sweet malt and molasses greet my tongue first, yielding a cornucopia of sweet delicious flavors. Many of the things noted in the nose are also present in the taste, but just even more condensed and with some roastiness in the finish; it's so good! Mouthfeel is super thick, very full bodied with low carbonation; perfect for an imperial stout. Incredible beer, I really hope they continue to make this; Dark Lord, watch out!

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Photo of Packforever1976
4.57/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had on tap at the Happy Gnome.

A: Pitch black. Smallish and creamy tan head decent retention. Sticky lacing.

S: Smells eerily similar to Darkness. Some dark chocolate, dark roasted malts, slight hint of hop bitterness. Smells absolutely sinful.

T: Amazing. I was beginning to wonder if I would ever get to enjoy this one, but when I saw it on the menu, it was a done deal. A nice balance between the sweetness and bitterness. Nice dark chocolate flavor, cocoa nibs, a hint of apple cider.

M: I usually like my RIS alightly thicker than this, but with the flavor as spot on as it was, I didn't mind too much. Like drinking velvet.

D: Where's the alcohol? I couldn't detect it at all. Dangerously drinkable. If the weather would've been a little more cooperative, I would have had another. Leines best offering, by a mile.

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Photo of Brad007
4.57/5  rDev +19%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

I'd read about Big Eddy in ads but never saw it til now.

Pours a pitch black with a thin brown seal into my glass. When it comes to this style, the darker, the better.

Licorice, toffee, tobacco and roasted coffee with a touch of cocoa in the nose. Seems to support the claim on the label.

Flavor is equally complex with licorice, toffee and roasted coffee. Very little of anything else unless you count the alcohol itself. It's a bit "warm" but should age nicely.

Lingering toffee and tobacco notes finish off this RIS.

It is distinctive and goes beyond the "coffee & cream" bombs that pass for RIS. Should age marvelously.

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Photo of brewcifix
4.57/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A- Big Eddy pours clear brown-black, but rests opaque black in the glass. There is a fizzy mocha head that provides a little lacing.

S- Roasted malts, molasses, toffee, dark fruit and raisin fill the nose. The bouquet is strong and lasts well to the last drop!

T- Sweet roasted malts, caramel, coffee, and bitter-sweet chocolate give way to sweet malty toffee finish. Hops take a back seat, only leaving a subtle grassy pine in an abundantly roasted malt-coffee aftertaste. This is a very nice tasting stout, indeed!

M- Soft carbonation accompanies a heavy tongue weight. This beer goes down silky- almost syrupy. It'd be difficult to drink ten of these, but, one is one to savor for sure.

Overall, this is a fabulous Russian Imperial. Unlike most brews, Big Eddy boasts a strong nose and rich taste without letting up an iota for the duration of the glass. Anyone that looks for a malt forward, sweet, rich, and impressive stout is sure to appreciate this one! I encourage anyone that happens upon this on tap or in a liquor store to not let this one slip through their fingers! I had this on tap at Bukowski's in Boston, and wasn't letting someone else buy it at my favorite liquor store! I even bought a little extra to age. I'll be back at a later date to review that!

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Photo of mcallister
4.55/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to NFLMVP!!

So the lable on this brew suprised me as I was expecting the usual Leinenkugel label. But the Big Eddy lables shows sophistication and class.

This looks like a find RIS. Black and inky with a mocha head that appears and disapears just as quickly into splotches and a ring around the glass.

Very nice nose as well. Roasty with a bit of charcoal and loads of dark fruits, black licorice and dark bitter chocolates. Mollassesy aroma with a vanilla yougurt covered currant, tree bark, blackberry and other ripe fruits.

Jesus this is nice. Maybe perfect mouthfeel. Completely palate coating and viscous with a long I mean forever long roasty, chocolatey finish. Wow. Did not expect this from this beer. Some alcohol shows through in the mouth and chest but adds to the character and complexity of this beer. So much dark chocolate and black fruits. Black currant, hints of vanilla and molasses and more black fruits. Big and rich. The carbonation level is dead on just teases the taste buds. An amazing stout, love to see this get national distribution.

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Photo of Tilley4
4.55/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to Homerbag for knocking this Want off my list..

Jet, jet black pour with a virtually non-existent head.. Wait, there it is... Very small though, an 1/8 inch or so.. This is black as pitch..

Lovely aroma of sweet blackstrap molasses, plump juicy raisins, roasted chocolatey malts... Very inviting and dark and delicious aroma...

Very deep dark taste of bittersweet chocolate covered raisins dipped in molasses... Identical to the smell, this is very very tasty...

Very creamy and rich and coating, I could drink this til I fell over face first..

Awesome brew this is. Love it, love it, love it...

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4.53/5  rDev +18%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours deeply, darkly, purely opaque blackness. Thick and syrupy. Head is two full fingers of carmel colored foam with nice staying power and a cloak of lace. Nose is very nice with dark chocolate covered cherries, raisens, carmalized malt and a decent balance of hops. Very attractive as you take first sip, roasty malts wrap nicely around the dark fruits. Syrupy chocolate glazes the tongue and the hopsbring about a slight soured bitter feel as you continue to drink. Dare I say "underrated". Electric on the mouthfeel as it begs for the nexy sip. Alchol is crazy well hidden. The lasting sour bitter twang is the only thing that smudges the drinkability only slightly. Very nice.

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Big Eddy Russian Imperial Stout from Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company
3.84 out of 5 based on 1,277 ratings.
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