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Stone 03.03.03 Vertical Epic Ale

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RATINGS: 414   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.65   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 270   ABV: 9%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
A new Vertical Epic will be released every year, with the goal being to collect them all and have a Vertical Epic tasting once the final Epic is released on 12/12/12. Each new Stone Vertical Epic Ale will be release one YEAR, one MONTH and one DAY apart. With Vertical Epic 03/03/03, we used some pretty interesting ingredients...coriander (a "Belgian-style" beer favorite!), alligator pepper (wow, bite into these little gems and you get a bigtime spicy rush of flavor), and a bit of both unmalted wheat and dark roasted wheat. And a blend of Belgian yeast and American ale yeast. And a nice selection of high alpha hops (a decidedly non-Belgian style twist). All told it makes for a dubble-ish taken-to-San-Diego-pushed-to-the-edge-and-slapped-around-a-bit beer. So, treat it gently. It's been abused enough already. Store it upright, cool and in the dark. It would enjoy a nice long rest. It will have plenty of patience. Now let's see about you . . . . In addition, we are pleased to provide the homebrewing recipe: http://stonebrew.com/timeline/030303


3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
chriso (7482) - London, Greater London, ENGLAND - FEB 13, 2006
Bottle at RBESG Grand Tasting, August 2005. Distinctly more coherent and focused that the 04.04.04 in my view, producing a much more satisfying beer. Or perhaps the elements have benefited from more time to integrate and settle down. Plenty of juicy, sharp hops mingling nicely with the spicy, peppery notes and with a rich, fruity backbone. Just gets a bit sweet for me but otherwise really enjoyable.

3.8
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Ughsmash (7364) - Pewaukee, Wisconsin, USA - JUN 4, 2005
Thought it was about time to bust out one of these. Pour was a nice reddish-amber hue with about 1/4" sustained creamy white head. Pleasant spicy aroma, with yeast, dark fruit, pepper, coriander, and an amalgum of other wonderous complexity. Flavor was equally complex, and the balance has mellowed out for the better since the release. Well-carbonated. Spicy hops are blended well with some citrusy hops, coriander, pepper, with a nice medium malt backbone. Finish is primarily citrus and pepper, but is still nicely complex. This is an interesting mix of the Belgian strong with American highlights, and is well-executed. The real trick will be saving my lone remaining bottle until 2012...

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
CaptainCougar (7133) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - AUG 22, 2003
Pours a dark copper mahogany brown with a thick frothy white head. Lots of sticky lace left by the head as it subsides. Faint bready Belgian yeast aroma with some caramel malt and oak. Body starts sweet and chewy with some chocolate, toffee, and floral hop aspects. Toward the finish I pick up a strange chemical, perhaps acetone, which could just be a result of the high alpha acid content and the Belgian style, something I'm not used to. Hopefully this will mellow as it ages. Still an interesting style and a decent beer.

2.8
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
MesandSim (7117) - London, Greater London, ENGLAND - SEP 16, 2007
A Mes rate: Bottle at LCRBM3. Raw and unbalanced. Very fruity, plenty of alcohol. Nothing special at all.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
alexsdad06 (7032) - Ohio, USA - NOV 10, 2007
22 oz. bottle. Pours a clear dark amber color with a good sized off white head that laces nicely. The aroma exhibits some oxidation, but comes through with caramel malts, hints of vanilla and spices, and alcohol. The flavor is still holding up nicely although I have doubts about 12/12/12. I get sweet caramel malts, corriander and pepper are still weakly noticeable, alcohol and yeast. This is still drinkable although past its prime. Medium bodied. Opened during a party celebrating my friends wife receiving her Master’s degree.

3.3
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Ernest (6730) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - SEP 1, 2003
Head is initially average sized, frothy, off-white, mostly diminishing. Body is hazy medium amber, dense tiny/small particles, bottle conditioned. Aroma is lightly malty (cookie), lightly yeasty (cobwebs), with notes of coriander, clove, and banana. Flavor is moderately sweet, moderately acidic, lightly bitter. Finish is lightly sweet, moderately acidic, moderately bitter. Medium body, watery texture, lively carbonation, lightly alcoholic. Doesn't hold a candle to the 02.02.02, unfortunately.

3.9
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
after4ever (6692) - Brier, Washington, USA - MAR 7, 2009
22. This certainly has aged magnificently. Murky dark amber with caramel highlights. Headless. Laceless. Cool, offbeat lavender, caramel, and pepper nose. Graham crackers, cinnamon, roast, caramel, and dark roasty spices on the mid-palate. Long spicy finish. It’s maybe a bit thinned out over where it might have been, but the flavors are delicious and definitely complex enough to enjoy.

3.3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
BBB63 (6449) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - MAY 15, 2003
Nice color but no head. Sweet and spicy aroma that smells more like a witbeer than and belgian brown. The malt is very noticeable while tasting and I can detect a peppery/spice undertone. Not much hops here. Dry on the palate and the aftertaste is not very long (except for the pepper). A good beer, but I was somewhat disappointed after truly enjoying the 02 offering and a few other Stone brews. My other bottle will be aged for 6 months when I may change my opinion.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Cletus (6355) - Connecticut, USA - SEP 14, 2008
Pours amber with a white head. Smells of fruit, some residual sugar, some pilsner malt, lots of spice. Tastes sweet and tangy with a nice hint of sweet hoppy hints. This was a pleasant surprise.

3.4
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
AmEricanbrew (6331) - Same Trailer, Different Park, Louisiana, USA - OCT 19, 2007
22 oz. bottle Sampled Nov. 2003 Pours a copper color with a decent head, but left no lacing behind.Mostly a caramel spicy smell. Strong sweet taste of burnt caramels and brown sugar followed by Stone’s signature hop character though a very mild version of it.Medium body with a decent mouthfeel .Finishes with a warming, spicy-alcohol tang. Not a typically hoppy Stone brew. Nice.


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