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Stone 06.06.06 Vertical Epic Ale



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RATINGS: 610   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.71   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 260   ABV: 8.66%
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As with any good epic, herein lies the promise of larger-than-life experiences, heroics, and twists and turns as the adventure unfolds. This bottle conditioned ale is chapter five, and is specifically designed to be aged until sometime after December 12th, 2012. Provided you can wait that long. At that time, enjoy it in a "vertical" tasting along with its ten Stone Vertical Epic Ale brethren. Each on unique to its year of release. Each with its own "twist & turn" in the plot line. Each one release one year, one month and one day from the previous year’s edition.

In this year’s edition, you’ll notice a deep, rich aroma of toasty malts, anise, Belgian yeast spiciness, and a hint of cedar. The toasty, dark and roasty malt flavors combine with a soft palate - courtesy of specialty dark wheat and barley malts. The body is fairly light for a beer with such a high gravity. There is a pleasant, lingering bitterness, so you know it’s part of the Stone family. This ale was brewed with a specialty Belgian yeast that we’re really liking here at Stone...it’s the same one we used for brewing the Stone 03.03.03 Vertical Epic Ale. And as with the Stone 05.05.05 Vertical Epic Ale, all the spicy, deep, and wonderfully funky aromas and flavor characteristics in this beer come as a result of nothing more than malt, hops, water and yeast!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Gorbalev (2924) - Ontario, CANADA - JUL 16, 2006
Shared with Hogtown Harry, GregClow, Jerc, and Blankboy, thanks big time Harry! Very dark brown, small brown’ish head. Nice strong Belgian aroma - spicy, alcohol - very nice. Taste follows - strong alcohol, spices, I even got a little bit of smoke at first, some pepper. Full bodied for the style. Very bitter finish. A nice beer that should age well.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
GregClow (2891) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - JUL 16, 2006
Bottle shared with blankboy, HogTownHarry, jerc and tupalev - courtesy of HogTownHarry. Pours a dark ruby-brown with a small, persistant tan head. Very nice aroma - fruity and spicey, some yeasty funkiness, and a bit of red wine. Flavour is sweet to start, with some fruit, clove and brown sugar notes, but it turns quite warm and bitter in the finish. A pretty solid effort all in all, and unlike the 04.04.04 and 05.05.05, I think this one is complex enough that it could actually make it to 12.12.12 in a drinkable state.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
SDalkoholic (2146) - Linda Vista, California, USA - JUL 14, 2006
Finally found a store that carried this after a couple of weeks of waiting for a store that was on Stone’s distribution list. Pours a deep dark brown with a small amount of head forming and then dying. Enticing aroma of signature Stone Belgian yeast with a dash of spices and light malt. Flavor is a dual replica of the aroma with additions of coffee and light trace of vanilla. From my guess this shoudl age real nice just like the 2005. I love abbey dubbels and Stone finally answered the call to make one.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
asteele8 (322) - Des Moines, Washington, USA - JUL 14, 2006
Bottle. Poured a deep brown-black with a light tan head. Clove smell is dominating in the aroma. Smell some fruit as well. Flavor is yeasty, tasting some fruit in there also. Smooth taste from start to finsh. A young beer, especially since it is not supposed to be tasted till much later. It should be very good around 12.12.12.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
bu11zeye (11942) - Frisco (Dallas), Texas, USA - JUL 13, 2006
UPDATED: JUN 6, 2007 (Bottle) Pours a dark burgundy body with a moderate beige head. Aroma of toasted malt, dark fruit, caramel, and clove. Flavor of malt, tobacco, caramel, and spices. Should mature well with some age.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
iwantalambic (1478) - St. Louis, Missouri, USA - JUL 13, 2006
UPDATED: OCT 23, 2009 22 oz bottle (sampled in July 2006…fairly fresh, eh?): Extremely dark, edging towards black, but with clear, golden at the edges. Thin, tight, creamy, ivory head...diminishing into a thin grey film…strong, yeasty fruit aroma with plump raisins, smoked peanuts, sour plums & lightly charred oak. Soft, creamy palate with fruity malts and herbal bitterness along with some playful candy sugar and sweet yeast. I think that this one has some nice potential on the tongue, both texture and flavour…
Oct 2009 update: The palate have improved: incredibly soft and smooth, wonderful texture with the perfect amount of bubbles! Much smokier than I remember with loads of peat and oak. <!-- /i -->

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
hopscotch (9158) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - JUL 13, 2006
Bottle... Clear, crimson ale with a mid-sized, creamy, lightly tanned head. Good retention. The complex aroma is a swirl of chocolaty, vinous notes with a touch of burnt rubber, port, soy sauce, anise, clove and smoke. The flavor is chocolaty and toasted with dark fruits, molasses and alcohol. Decently-balanced by the hops and booziness. Full-bodied and creamy with lively carbonation. Finishes toasted and medium bitter. Pretty hot. Should age well, but I enjoyed it straight out of the Brickskeller’s cooler.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
jercraigs (7812) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - JUL 13, 2006
Black body with a moderate tan head (3+). Sweet malt aroma sort of anise like notes, very light woody chocolate and a touch of light alcohol. Dry spice in the flavour, some malt, finish is surprisingly bitter, covering up a light anise character. Average palate is lighter than I would like for this. Pleasant but a bit underwhelming. 7/3+/6-7/3/14

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
HogTownHarry (6101) - Toronto (Harbourfront), Ontario, CANADA - JUL 13, 2006
Bottle (650ml). Shared with blankboy, GregClow, jerc and tupalev, my bottle via trade with IrishBoy. Poured deep cloudy opaque slightly reddish brown with a smallish off-white head - extra point for looking so thick. Very appealing sweet yeasty/spicy aroma, caramel malt and vanilla. Taste is surprisingly bitter, particularly the finish - bitterness from alcohol and pungent herbal hops - but it still has a solid sweet roat malt backbone, with plenty of soft spice and sweetness ... it seems quite oaky, plenty of vanilla, almost a bit bourbony. While the body is a tad weak, the mouthfeel is nicely bitter and spicy, decently carbonated - I think I enjoyed this more than the 04 or the 05 - and I suspect the second bottle I’m storing away will age nicely, at least for a year or so.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
ehhdayton (1188) - USA - JUL 12, 2006
light sour fruity aroma with some roastedness greets the nose. The pour is a dark brown with a decent tan head of some duration and lacing. The flavor has initially a sourness with some spice that grows to a more roasted flavor and finish.

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