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

bottled
common

on tap
common

Broad Distribution

Add Distribution Data
RATINGS: 410   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.83   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.


rangerred's rating

4.7
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
rangerred (861) - Johnson City, Tennessee, USA - JAN 31, 2013
275ml bottle into a snifter. Bottled in May 2011. Pours pitch black with a dark tan half finger head that is pretty fizzy and quick to fade. Head retention and lacing are both lacking with just a ring left around the top of the beer. The aroma has much more of a fruity character than other RIS I have had. Lots of dark fruit and licorice that really reminds me of many English ales, just on a stronger level. Really not much roast at all just a lot of fruit and yeasty esters. It works, though, and nothing is offensive whatsoever. The flavor is where this beer really shines. Much like the aroma, dark fruity esters dominate at first. Somewhat sweet with quite a bit of yeast character. Not extremely impressive but about halfway through the taste, something magical happens. Almost out of nowhere tons of roast comes shooting in along with some coffee and dark chocolate. This marries magically with the dark fruit leading to an intensely complex finish. Moderate bitterness with a lot less sweetness than many other RIS with a pretty dry finish. Overall, probably the best RIS I have had. Extremely complex flavors and an absolutely amazing mouthfeel with alcohol being extremely well hidden. A definite world class beer.


4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
PriorL (1279) - Gent, BELGIUM - APR 17, 2014
Sample from Mathieu87. THX APPEARANCE: pitch black beer, no foam. NOSE: alcohol, coffee, sweet. TASTE: alcohol, sweet, liquorice, mocha, vanilla.

3.5
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
JoshAWaddell (33) - Allen Park, Michigan, USA - APR 17, 2014
Aroma of coffee and malts, maybe a hint of dark fruit. Pours almost black with small tan head. Tastes of malts, coffe and strong alcohol. They did not hide the alcohol nearly enough. Still, a decent beer. I recommend Founders, Oskar Blues Ten FIDY and even Breckenridge 72 for Imperial Stouts over this beer.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
tenninjas (1) - - APR 12, 2014 does not count
Strong and dark, with a faintly sweet aroma. Aftertaste reminiscent of coffee, great pair for a philly chicken. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

5
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 20/20
Caskalefan (141) - Bellingham, Washington, USA - APR 9, 2014
Very complex aroma and flavor of walnut/pecan, pears in brandy, campfire, dried fruit with a hint of green olive, roast coffee and cream, vanilla and figs. Finish is quite lengthy, and the overall effect is elegant, layered and restrained, while at the same time ebullient. A marvelous tribute to the granddaddy of all Imperial Russian Stouts.

3.7
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
ajnepple (1666) - Clear Creek, Colorado, USA - APR 8, 2014
Small pour at Falling Rock (keg kicked). Black appearance, tan head. Aroma of chocolate, cream, coffee and roasted malts. Similar flavor, adding a touch of dark fruits, earthy hops and smoke. Smooth and creamy.

3.9
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
CardsFan25 (54) - - APR 7, 2014
Dark pour with about an inch and a half of head from a vintage 2012 bottle. Very smooth pear, fig, chocolate, and malt taste. Great beer!

4.3
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
BenH (2014) - Edinburgh, SCOTLAND - APR 4, 2014
Bottle. Black with tan head. Aroma is full of muscovado, licorice, molasses and some dark chocolate. Taste is similar, licorice and dark chocolate that makes way for a very roasty finish. Full bodied, sweet and bitter. Delish. 2000th rate

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Niall73 (1052) - Greater London, ENGLAND - MAR 14, 2014
Bottle 2012 vintage. Big sweet dark fruit aroma - figs, raisins. Malt cake, some booze, very rich... a little soy meatiness come in quite quickly after 5 mins or so. Medium to full body, mild carbonation. Dark toffee, light liquorice, rum, raisins, coffee cake, some woody resin... Tasty.

3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
jamestulloch (1048) - Edinburgh, SCOTLAND - MAR 14, 2014
Bottle from The Beerhive. Black body with a thick tan head. Great lacing. Overly rich aroma of chocolate cake, charcoal, liquorice, dark chocolate, liqueur and vanilla. Sweet flavour of prunes, dark chocolate and furniture polish. Medium to full body with a powdery mouthfeel. Soft carbonation. The alcohol is well hidden but the flavour is simply too sweet, rich and cloying for my liking. I feel it lacks a bitter, tangy hop balance to counteract the heavy malt character.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
AshtonMcCobb (2115) - Edinburgh, SCOTLAND - MAR 10, 2014
Bottle from the Guildford Arms. Appearance - when it settles a lovely coffee like beer. Opaque black with a crema head. Nose - it’s that imperial note of prunes in alcohol or Black Forest Gateau. Taste - boozy fruit cake plus chocolate. Tar and liquorice. Palate - medium to full bodied with a creamy yet drying texture and a well balanced finished. Overall - yep that’s imperial porter by numbers.


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