Imperial Stout | Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S

520 Reviews
Imperial StoutImperial Stout

Brewed by:
Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
23°P,75 IBU.

Ingredients: Maris Otter, Munich, roasted barley, oat, black, and chocolate malt; Columbus and Crystal hops; English ale yeast, and our local Grimstad water.

Added by Sigmund on 02-08-2006

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Reviews: 520 | Ratings: 886
Photo of NJpadreFan
2.51/5  rDev -39.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Nogne- Imperial Stout

Purchased a bomber from Circle Liquors- Pennington, NJ

A- Thick dark black with a big creamy frothy head.
S- Dark roasted coffee/ espresso with a touch of alc.
T- Dark roasted/ burnt coffee and cocoa with a disgusting taste of Burnt rubber!!
M- Burnt rubber fumes permiating into my palette!

Overall- Looks and smells great, even the first initial sip is nice but Burnt rubber dominates. YUK!

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Photo of PatronWizard
2.56/5  rDev -37.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bomber to glass...

This puppy is black. Mocha tan head. Leaves thick syrup on the side of the glass.

Smells like black licorice. Burning fruit.

Tastes like cocoa powder and alcohol. I don't know right away if I like it or not but I keep wanting another sip. Purple grapes. Black cherries. Rubber, like from a tire. Or if a bus came to a screeching halt and you licked the skid marks. Each sip I'm liking this a little less. There is one just terrible flavor in there that is ruining this beer for me.

Feels full, dry, almost chalky.
Drinkability is suffering with that one nasty flavor. I'm sure it's well crafted but there's bound to be a few of us that disagree with this taste.

Overall: not for me

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Photo of spoonhawk
3/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On the heavier side of things but manages a thick head. The mouth feel is viscous but far from sticky.

Charred grains and french roast dominate upfront. Hints of barely sweet chocolate come through midsip, providing some relief from the more forward burnt flavors. The finish introduces some earthy hops that build on the drier flavors, and the alcohol shows a bit more than I was expecting it would.

The lingering flavor mixes a touch of sweetness, a ton of charred and burnt malt, and a present but not offensive alcohol.

A solid, straight forward RIS. I think the execution was on-point, and the lack of evident flaws is commendable. But, for me, it was a little too much char and a little too one-dimensional.

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Photo of Overlord
3.06/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Wow. Glad I didn't trade through the ass to acquire the super version of this beer. Did not like.

Pours a nice looking black with a bubbly dark tan head. Best part about this beer. Smells like roasted licorice and chocolate. Mouthfeel is too thin.

Taste has a godawful aftertaste. Yes, there's chocolate, bitter coffee (too bitter, actually), and some dark roasted fruit. Underlaying this, however, is some sort of horrible charcoal aftertaste that's actually giving me a tummy ache.

Glad I split this bottle. It will be awhile before I revisit this brewery.

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Photo of kajerm
3.1/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle, pours opaque and jet black with a thin, surprisingly white head.

The aroma is spicy phenols, coffee, sweet fruity esters, and fusels (at least that's what I think they are.) Some alcohol is present in the aroma. There are a surprising number of yeast-derived aromas here for an imperial stout, but it works pretty well.

Opens up with dark malt and transitions very quickly into black patent astringency. The malt bitterness comes with a dark chocolate flavor that keeps it better contained than in, say, Old Rasputin, but I'd like to see more going on mid-palate. Some phenolic and alcoholic spiciness are present in the finish.

Mouthfeel is actually pretty light (which makes sense, looking at the ABV), bordering on porterish. It's not as thin as some of the Rogue stouts, but it's still a little too light for me-- I like my stouts nice and fat.

Reasonably drinkable, but the chalkiness takes it down a notch or two.

Decent imperial stout, but it's an overpopulated style where my standards are high; I wouldn't buy it again.

Later: Chalkiness is out of control, needs more booze, needs to be chewier. Not very good.

Even Later: I described this to a friend as "like drinking Tums." I thought it was apt.

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Photo of DIM
3.11/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

a: This beer is black as night with no hilights. A vigorous pour yielded a medium sized tan head that faded fairly quickly.

s: This one has a surprisingly mellow nose. Some coffe, dark chocolate, and a bit too much alcohol. edit: As it warms I began to smell charred wood. (-.5)

t: Just as the smell would have suggested, coffee and chocolate dominate. Some hop bitterness on the end with an alcohol burn that is a bit strong given the 9% abv. edit: As it warms an unpleasant charred wood taste emerges. (-.5)

m: This is a bit too thin for the style and some more carbonation would have been welcome.

d: Glad to have tried it even if it's just to say I had an RIS from Norway. Overall, a fairly solid effort.

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Photo of bobhits
3.13/5  rDev -24%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours like motor oil or some kind of sludge, head, lifeless, and thick. The odd thing is the beer somehow finds a way to build a recent creamy and dense looking head. The color is rather dark and doesn’t hold for long, but still a touch surprising. This beer is black and oily, with great legs. It looks like a 15% black stout instead of 9.

This beer smells rather flat though. Coffee, chocolate, and sweet malt all take their place, but there’s a flatness and coying sweet aroma much like Mikkler’s Black Hole which isn’t extremely good.

Thankfully, this beer tastes 100x better than black hole. Coffee is the big flavor in this beer with chocolate intermingled to finish the dark flavors off. The malt gives off this coy vanilla flavor with some fruit and perhaps lactose like effects. This malt just doesn’t seem to mix well with the other flavors.

The real failure to make things mix perfectly comes from the body of this beer. It isn’t so thick that one thinks an extreme sipper, but it looks it. It is just this intensely dark heavy cream bodied beer with simply not enough carbonation after the first few sips.

I actually really like a lot of this. The flavors up front are exceptional, but the beer finishes poorly and isn’t overly enjoyable to drink. I very worth effort that seems to indicate to me drink fresh or well aged.

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Photo of schellsbeer
3.16/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes from Early December 2008.

A - Dark to almost Black. Thick.

S - Alcohol smell. Not the best. Average at best.

T - Imperial Stout but not the best. Much better out there. Not complex. Very simple.

M - THIN!!! I want an Imperial Stout that I can chew on, not drink through a straw.

D - Yeah....I guess. Just not for me. At 9%, I will drink others before this one again. Impressed...Not at all!!

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Photo of Arbitrator
3.18/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Chilled bottle into a glass. Purchased from City Beer.

A: Pours a viscous, opaque black with 2" of dense mocha-colored head. That recedes over a few minutes into a half-finger of head on the drink, which remains there indefinitely. Some nice clumps of lacing down the sides of the glass.

S: Smell is very appetizing: coffee strongest, roasted malts and barley second, and some dark chocolate coming in last.

T: Surprisingly simplistic. A lot of coffee on the initial taste, with only a smatter of dark, roasted malts at the finish which provide a slight sweetness and a lingering bitterness in the aftertaste. Never tasted the chocolate that was in the aroma. Kind of a disappointing flavor profile against the complexity of other RISes.

M: Full-bodied, with just a tad high carbonation that detracts from its creaminess. Well-masked ABV.

D: Not an impressive flavor, and at its $11 price, a poor value. I won't bother with this one again.

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Photo of champ103
3.24/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

A: Pours an opaque black color. No light gets through at all. A one finger tan head gently rises, and recedes in a second. Light lace is left behind.
S: A wonderful aroma of toasted malt, chocolate, vanilla, and espresso. Baked bread and some almonds as well. Really balanced and nuanced.
T: Pretty much a complete turn about. Lots of acrid, and roasted malt. A big bakers chocolate flavor that is really bitter. Acrid coffee as well.
M/D: A big full body that is viscous, syrupy, and thick. The big chocolate bitterness and alcohol burn makes this a bit hard to sip on.

This is a really big and thick stout. I love the nose, but overall a bit one dimensional. To much bitterness from the chocolate, and a bit acrid for my tastes. Not bad, but there are many Imperial Stouts that I like better.

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Photo of JamesMN
3.27/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Pitch black with a bunch of brown gunk at the bottom of the glass. Half finger dark brown head.

Aroma: Dark malt. Touch of alcohol. Dark fruits.

Taste: Pretty mundane RIS but has all the elements of the style. Dark roasty malt flavors of chocolate with black coffee bitterness. Some good hop bitterness that brings a lightness to the palate. Can't taste the 9% ABV but gives a little heat.

Mouthfeel: Just below full in body and a bit overcarbonated. Average drinkability.

Final Thoughts: The appearance of mucky yeast globs in the beer definitely made this one a challenge to enjoy. Would I drink it again? Maybe.

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Photo of cbilek06
3.28/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - Pours dark brown and viscous. Was disappointed on how quickly the head disappeared, however it left some nice lace around the glass
S - Smells like vanilla, molasses
T - Wanted to taste the vanilla and molasses that I smelled but the roasted malts really took over. I wanted more balance. Had a nice espresso aftertaste that kept me drinking it.
M -Not as thick as it pours, but not bad thing
D -Some folks like that alcohol warmness in high ABV beers, but at 9% Alc/Vol it surprisingly doesn't have an alcohol bite. That plus being on the thin side makes it dangerously drinkable. Not bad, but not best in class

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Photo of MbpBugeye
3.31/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A beer from a Brewery that Ill never be able to pronounce sent to me for my birthday from JamnesCameron. Trade with this guy, he does overboard!

Ive seen this stuff places, Im not sure if Ive seen it in Columbus, but if I have it wasnt recently. Their labels have always caught my eye but Ive never picked any up before so I was happy to receive this.

A- Really super nice. It sports a big, dark red head with unabashed lacing.

S- This already is shaping up to be a roasty beast. Lots of roasted malts and smoke. Really the smoke, charcoal and roast is mostly all that I can get.

T- It is quite a smokey beer. Its in the same vein as Beer Geek Bacon. Lots of smoke, charcoal and a spicy hoppiness.

M- Disappointingly thin, especially after how thick it looks on the pour and how it clings to the glass. Carbonation is quite low which helps create a smoothness that is very welcomed.

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Photo of br3wmeister
3.33/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Nice silky brown head with good retention and nice lacing. This beer is black, can not see through it even when held up to a light.

S- Lots of sweet malt character, chocolate caramel, molasses and some roasted barley. Little hop profile.

T- Bitter... Dark roasted barley, coffee and piny hops. Very little sweetness to be had with the taste. Lots of alcohol in the end.

M- Dry and bitter bite. Full bodied.

Overall- The smell does not match the taste, I found it to be a little too bitter for my liking.

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Photo of 51mmz0rz
3.33/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

0.5L bottle poured into a Sam Adams glass.

A: Totally opaque body, great tight head, chocolate mousse color. Good retention and good lacing.

S: Initial hoppy bitter aroma, followed by a sweet roastyness, almost milky smelling.

T: Taste up front is good, much like the aroma. There is a long lingering bitterness, honestly it becomes unpleasant.

M: Mouthfeel is good, pretty filling. Carbonation is relatively low, I like that for this style.

D: Rough to drink today, maybe by buds are out of whack, but this bitterness is killer.

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Photo of DaveHS
3.35/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Vintage 2009. I've never had a fresh bottle, so these are my impressions at 2 years old. I'll edit this once I've tried a fresh one.

A-Pours shiny obsidian with 1/2 inch of mocha colored head. Leaves chunky lacing.

S-Lactic/condensed milk sweetness,offset by tart cherries and light roasted chocolate malts, hand soap. Possibly infected, or past its prime?

T/M-Alternately watery/bitterly roasty body is the first thing I notice. Tart fruit acidity comes in mid-palate. The finish is bitter and hoppy. Chalky and mouth coating, with a lingering acidity. Hard to drink.

O-Unpleasantly acidic and dry. Tastes like it's past its prime. Will have to try a fresh one.

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Photo of mrmanning
3.35/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle sample thanks to Cratez. Deep opaque black liquid has modest creamy mocha cap.Intense nose of licorice, dark chocolate, roasted malts, and caramelized red meat. Sweet and hugely bitter, with dark fruits, chocolate, and roasted malts, add soy sauce, and bit of smoke.Full body has a thick feel to it. Creamy carbonation with a long bitter finish. Good. Thanks Mike!

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Photo of klewis
3.37/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours midnight black with a large, bubbly, dark tan head. Good sustain with heavy lacing.

S: Cocoa, chocolate, some anise...typical RIS aromas- but not very much of any of them; the smell is quite subtle.

T: Bitter with an earthy astringency. A guiness-like taste with a dry roasted character. Plain and one-dimensional.

M: Medium-bodied with a creamy texture. The carbonation is so light and the feel so smooth that it seems like it was poured from a nitro-tap. Finishes dry and slightly chalky.

D: A big disapointment. This beer is of course drinkable, but I had much higher hopes after all the hype. Nice to look at, but otherwise quite average.

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Photo of BDTyre
3.41/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not the best Imperial falls somewhat flat. Good looks, but fairly bland and one dimensional. Alcohol and roasted malt in the nose, a bit of chocolate and coffee in there, but its muddled and weak. Messy blend of coffee and malts, with an odd bread-y taste not suited to an Imperial stout. It just seems a little undeveloped. Thinnish body, could be a bit thicker. Normally I enjoy Imperial stouts, but this just seem underdone.

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Photo of sweetbrew82
3.45/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16.9 oz. bottle into a snifter/ no freshness date

P: Absolutely jet black in the glass with barely a sliver of light coming through on the very edges. One of the darkest beers I've had in a while. The khaki-colored foam on top isn't as thick as I expected, but does have a nice creaminess to it. Showed average retention and left only a few specks of lace behind.

A: Roasted malts, chocolate, coffee, anise, and booze. Lacks the power and strength that it takes to measure up in this top-heavy category, though.

T: All the usual suspects that you would expect to find in an RIS are here. Plenty of very deeply-roasted/burnt malts, chocolate, coffee, molasses, figs, anise, and booze. But what immediately took me back was the bigger-than-expected hop presence. There are some stouts out there that boast a really hoppy profile that I love, (as I am a hophead of the highest order) but I find myself really wishing that they weren't so prominent in this one. Their citrusy alpha-acids intrude way too much on the stout flavors, forcing me to dig underneath it to get to the flavor profile that I want out of an RIS. Needless to say, you can taste all 75 of those IBU's as a result, which is only added to by the bitterness of the coffee. But one thing is for sure, the alcohol is nowhere to be found, aside from the slight burn in the chest upon swallow.

M: The mouthfeel is not at all like I expected. It's not real viscious, but it is really silky smooth on the tongue, and seems to glide across the palate with ease. But it doesn't feel nearly as full as the appearance would lead you to believe, though. I'd say medium-bodied sounds about right. It teeters on the edge of being thin and watery for a stout, instead of being thick and chewy like what you would expect from a beer of this style.

Notes: This is a decent Russian Imperial Stout, but honestly, I was a bit let-down. The burnt malts combine with the hops to impart a bitterness that seems to muddle things up a bit for me, which results in the stout flavors not being able to shine as brightly as they could. In my opinion, it's definitely not worth the $8.39 that I paid for it, which was the fear that forced me to keep putting it off for so long. It's got potential, though. Maybe a year or two in a cellar would do it some good. As is, though, I'm unimpressed.

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Photo of far333
3.48/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Black and opaque with a light brown head of frothy foam that settles out quickly leaving uneven soapy bubbles.

Low aroma of sharp chocolate and espresso, some port and brandy notes.

Flavors of cocoa and burnt espresso, darkly roasted malts, some cherry tartness, hints of smoke. High bitterness, some acrid notes.

Mouthfeel is somewhat slick, low carbonation, finishes a little tannic and puckery.

Fairly tasty beer, but seems out of balance, a lttle rough around the edges.

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

16.9 oz bottle

Pours a rich, black color with a small cocoa head that recedes. Mild lacing on the glass.

Sweet, roasted malt aroma with notes of espresso and dark chocolate.

Taste is malty sweet upfront with a bold roasted malt flavor. Leads into some mild tones of espresso and dark cocoa, but the sweet roastedness remains dominant. Some hop bitterness apears midway and rides through the finish, but isn't quite enough to offset the sweet, lingering finish.

Full body, solid carbonation. Mildly syrupy.

Overall, a nice IS - although not overly complex. A nice finish to an eveining, although the sweetness and slightly syrupy body hinder the drinkability. Certailny woth a try, especially for fans of the style.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.51/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle that was obtained about 1 year old ago and had no freshness information apparent.

Poured in to Founder's tulip glass.

A - Dark black with one finger of foamy espresso coloured head.

S - Chocolate, roasted malts, licorice, some noticeable alcohol. An overall sweetness is fairly predominant without being able to attach a specific smell to it.

T - Roasted malts, milk chocolate, molasses, some bitterness and an overall sweetness.

M - Medium body, chewy. Light carbonation.

O - A good RIS but not one I would search out again. The sweetness was a little much for me.

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Photo of Floydster
3.51/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

500 ml bottle purchased from Liquid Solutions in Oregon for about nine dollars, imported via the Shelton Brothers, split with some friends on Friday night, reviewed from notes, also poured into my Delirium Tremens snifter

A-Pretty much black in color but some light going through the top, 3/4 inch creamy light tan head that lasts upwards of five minutes, decent retention, very little lacing
S-Subtle hoppiness, sweetness, mild coffee, roasted malt, yeast, both dark and milk chocolate, and charred wheat
T-This brew was heavily roasted with lots of dark chocolate and coffee, it was also dry with some nice bitterness coming from the Columbus hops, starts off sweeter than it ends, some burned accents at times from the chocolate and rich malt that must have been heavily roasted, flavor is not very powerful but it is balanced with the malt and hops bouncing off one another
M-Lots of carbonation which was one of the only things I did not really like about this beer, medium bodied, roasty, bitter, and rich mouthfeel, taste lingered
D-Would have probably been easy to finish the bottle myself but I do not how much more of that I could have drank afterwards, slightly heavy but smooth, ABV is not too high for an imperial stout and is hidden pretty well

We took the advice written on the bottle and tried this with some vanilla ice cream and it actually worked quite nicely by enhancing the beer's roasted flavors, I have enjoyed the various brews I have tasted from Nogne in Norway, would drink again even though it is a bit expensive, worth trying

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Photo of Beaver13
3.53/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16.9 oz bottle. Pours an opaque black with a small dark brown head that quickly dissipates to a thin film.

The aroma is burnt roasted chocolate malts, grains, anise and some alcohol.

The flavor is some lactic chocolate followed by anise and a big sticky burnt bitterness with a little residual sweetness. As it warms, some coffee notes come out. The alcohol is well hidden. The mouthfeel is medium to full and slightly watery.

Overall, this is a decent big impy stout. It's a little too much on the charred side for me.

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Imperial Stout from Nøgne Ø - Det Kompromissløse Bryggeri A/S
4.12 out of 5 based on 886 ratings.
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