RateBeer
overall
99
87
style
Brewed by Charles Wells
Style: Imperial Stout
Bedford, England
Serve in Snifter

bottled
common

on tap
available

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 482   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.85   SEASONAL: Autumn   EST. CALORIES: 300   ABV: 10%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
As Originally brewed in 1795 for Catherine the Great of Russia. Enjoy now or allow to mature in the cellar. Brewed to perfection only once a year, Courage Imperial Russian Stout enjoys a rich, espresso body with pear overtones and an intriguing fresh smokey, fruity finish.


3.5
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
CraftBeerNick (1214) - London Town, Greater London, ENGLAND - DEC 14, 2013
Bottle at home, 13th December 13. Pours black, aroma is smokey ash, sweet chocolate. Taste is not so complex, but a reasonable sipper, for the price

3.9
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
ContemplateBeer (1719) - Louisville, Kentucky, USA - DEC 13, 2013
Thought of Handel’s "Zadok the Priest" when pouring, so that’s the soundtrack for this beer at the moment (John Eliot Gardiner’s rendition with the Monteverdi Choir, described by one listener as being "coldly dignified") Aroma: Espresso up front, something that almost reminds me of sandalwood in a subtle way, vanilla beans, fudge, slight peat; really marvelous and, well, dignified. Appearance: Inky, pitch black pour with a lively, frothy head that settles into a mocha coloured coating. Flavor: Espresso and earth; vanilla in the background; a little bit of a hot edge towards the end. In every way avoids the label of "sweet." Palate: Medium body, oily texture, flat carbonation, bitter finish. Overall: 2012 vintage, bottle #083833. Maybe a little too soon to open, but still quite nice.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Fin (8270) - Merton, Oxfordshire, England, Oxfordshire, ENGLAND - DEC 12, 2013
Bottle from ’Jacks’ Westholme Stores, Goring-on-Thames, Oxon consumed at home Thursday 12th December 2013 Pours oily black, ’shark eye black’ with a beige head. A little coffee on the nose and a dusting off cocoa. Taste is much, much simpler and less extravagent than many of the more OTT big American Imperial Stouts, that’s not to say this is in anyway better, its just different with a distinctly British take on this style. I don’t think the alcohol is too intrusive, it isn’t to sweet. Some liquorice, a little woodiness I like it, btw I’ve been out on a work Christmas night out this is my nightcap so not as desriptive as it could have been. A7 A4 T7 P4 Ov15 3.7

4.5
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
jamesie1857 (1644) - Sheffield, South Yorkshire, ENGLAND - DEC 11, 2013
275ml bottle from Tesco - only £1.99 - a bargain! Rich black body, thick foamy beige head. Nose is liquorice, black coffee, blackcurrants, with a boozy overtone. The taste is rich and fruity, with an oily mouthfeel, and a long alcohol warming finish. This is good... very good.

3.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 13/20
prawlie (1267) - Berkshire, ENGLAND - DEC 10, 2013
Bottle from Beers of Europe. Black with oily coloured head. Dry roasted, but surprisingly easy on the palate, with light chocolate notes. Roast, vanilla and chocolate in the aroma. Slipped down a treat.

3.3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Beese (2560) - Watford, Hertfordshire, ENGLAND - DEC 9, 2013
Cask at the Watford Beer Festival 2013. Poured black with a rocky tan head. Aroma of black treacle, cocoa and alcohol. Mouth feel was more watery than I would hope for in a 10% imperial stout. Very syrupy flavour with sweet molasses and some coffee. Palate was dark chocolate, dates, toffee and warm booze... however it ended up being very salty as well. Considering who brews this, I wasn’t surprised to be quite underwhelmed, but it wasn’t undrinkable...

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
evergreen0199 (2338) - Northwood, Greater London, ENGLAND - DEC 8, 2013
2013 Vintage bottle from my local Tesco (4 for £6 which is a bargain). A dark brown/black coloured pour with a healthy tight beige head on top. Rich chocolate, coffee aroma. Tastes similar, rich chocolate, some coffee, licquorice, hint of dark fruit. It is pretty good but I’m sure it would improve considerably after some years of ageing.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
richc (239) - Bolton, Greater Manchester, ENGLAND - DEC 7, 2013
Aroma of coffee and liquorice with some cocoa notes. Flavour adds perhaps a hint of roast and even marmite

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
SarkyNorthener (2927) - West Bromwich (Yorkshire Expat), West Midlands, ENGLAND - DEC 5, 2013
UPDATED: DEC 13, 2013 Bottle from Tesco. 2013 Vintage. Black beer with medium tan head. Aroma of cocoa, coffee and some wood shavings. Taste is dark chocolate, coffee beans, some vanilla and dark fruits with a touch of licorice. There is a little warmth from the alcohol but nothing imposing. Medium bodied and moderately oily. Very nice. Have a few more to open at various years.

3.6
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
beerandbeyond (708) - ISRAEL - DEC 5, 2013
9.3Oz bottle poured into a tulip glass. Super dark brown color with a huge fluffy dark beige head that stays. Dark chocolate aromas, cocoa nibs, vanilla, marzipan and some roasted wood. Sweet chocolaty flavor, dark fruits, lo bitterness, espresso, some alcohol and vanilla. Med-full body, surprisingly fizzy, somewhat creamy and quite rich.


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