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: 480   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.


4.2
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
VinegarStroke (338) - Napa, California, USA - MAR 17, 2015
Bottle on St Patrickís. Very dense. Medium to light head with a light lace. Very dense inky aroma. Roasted coffee, cocoa, black prunes and a hint of mocha. Off dry, not sour and medium bitterness. The palate is saturated with flavor. So dense and rich and dark. Coffee, toffee, chocolate cake and ice cream all in one. Very rich and moreish. There are also vinous character about the palate. Prune also An amazing surprise. I expected something commercial and itís certainly not that.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
HonusWagner (1701) - Florida, USA - MAR 17, 2015
Roasty as hell, some molasses, medium sweetness. Itís a little fruity and basically a defining RIS even if itís far from perfect.

4.2
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Stuu666 (6166) - Edinburgh, SCOTLAND - MAR 11, 2015
Bottle at home. Pours black, nose is coffee, chocolate, liquorice, taste is delicious, thick, sweet.

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
jeremyh70 (873) - Missouri, USA - MAR 9, 2015
A dark brown color with just a hint of chestnut at the edges. Has a small tan head that settles to a tight ring and leaves decent lacing. I get dark bread first in the aroma followed by a bit of blackstrap molasses, dusty leather and just a bit of pleasant papery oxidation. Brought to mind a study with leather chairs and old books on wooden shelves. The taste also has dark bread along with licorice, some espresso and leather. Thereís also a smooth roasty bitterness that lingers and a hint of dark chocolate in the dry finish. The body is on the top end of medium with low to moderate carbonation. This is what I imagine the original RIS tasting like. Enjoyed drinking and contemplating this beer.

4.2
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Maakun (1461) - The Hague, NETHERLANDS - MAR 6, 2015
2013 bottle thanks to olliejobbins. Black with rich beige head. Black chocolate, rich roasted malts, light spices with cinnamon and speculaas, marzipan, marmelade. Sweet with light bitterness throughout and a light fruity tartness towards the finish. Full rich bodied with creamy feel. This is better than a lot of imperial stouts with added coffee or strong barrel aged character. Really good.

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
UXO (757) - CANADA - MAR 1, 2015
Pours sold black with one finger of dense tan head, excellent retention and lacing. (5/5) Nose is roasty malts, chocolate and coffee, molasses, pear, vinous notes, slight smoke. (8/10) Taste is moderate sweet, moderate bitter. (8/10) Medium body, moderate carbonation, off-dry mildly bitter finish. (4/5) A big yet not overwhelming brew. The double-digit ABV is fairly well-integrated, and is apparent only a a mild warming. The slight smokiness plays well with the dark toasted malt flavours, tempering the intensity of the molasses. Feels like it would cellar very well, even though the ABV is not overly hot. (16/20)

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
MarkoNm (1291) - Novo mesto, SLOVENIA - FEB 27, 2015
Pours a deep black color, topped with a small tan colored head. Roasted malts in the aroma, some notes of chocolate and coffee as well, although the later very mild. Taste is sweet, notes of molasses and fairly strong presence of coffee taste, and a mild bittery feel. Creamy and filling, storng taste although you donít really feel its 10%. Nice.

4.6
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
voyageurmike (139) - Pennsylvania, USA - FEB 26, 2015
On tap served in a tulip glass. Brown with pretty tan foamy head. A medium-bodied beer with coffee and cocoa flavors, and richness reminiscent of bourbon barrel imperial stout. Finish is very enjoyable, not bitter.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
bubbleflubber (1978) - Asheville, North Carolina, USA - FEB 19, 2015
Itís nice to compare different vintages of this awesome brew. I am one of the lucky ones to have rated a 22-year old 1993 vintage, and can now rate its contemporary counterpart. This pours pitch black into the glass, with the deepest of ruby-mahogany hues to the fringes. A wispy eggshell head ensues, reducing to a thin cap of suds that leave light ring lacing. The nose is of mixed bitter and semi-sweet chocolates, alongside a port wine essence. Flavors have bitter chocolates, semi-sweet chocolates, melon and pear notes, dark fruit esters and skins. The finish is of lightly smoked bittering hops and a toasted bakerís chocolate that provide a curt, yet super complex end of the pull. The rich, full body is silky on the palate, substantive and complex for days. The carbonation provides enough mouthfeel activity to keep things interesting, but not a deterrent to the silky richness of the brew. Thank goodness I ran into the contemporary counterpart of the vintage rated before. What a difference, and what a brew! Aging has only mellowed this out to an exquisite aperitif/nightcap. This 2-year-old 2013 vintage is rich, luscious, complex, substantive.... and did I mention delicious? A great brew.... with a 20+ year history of excellence.

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 12/20
greenmanalishi (493) - Leicestershire, ENGLAND - FEB 15, 2015
2011 bottling - drank 2014 Courage Russian Imperial Stout (2011+) Courage Russian Imperial Stout (2011+)


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