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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 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
turbo (1271) - Arizona, USA - JUN 30, 2006
Bottle poured black with a thick head and lacing. Aroma is sweet roast chocolate as is the flavor. Finish is roasty and a bit tart. Good beer!

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
a10555 (125) - Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA - JUN 29, 2006
UPDATED: JAN 17, 2007 Wow! It looked like a porter at first, and then when I held it up to light it looked like a really dark amber. It has a really sweet hoppy aroma and tasted like gold! This is without a doubt the best beer I have drank in a long long time.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
freekyp (1485) - Thomasville, North Carolina, USA - JUN 29, 2006
Looks like a porter with a thick tan head, lacing to spare, and an almost opaque reddish brown body. One whiff, and you know its something altogether different. Redolent of soy sauce and clove, this brew takes a nod from the Beligians with its complex aroma and flavor. Full bodied and tart with a solid malt roasty backbone, Vertical epic tells a tale of dark fruit, soy, and sweetness, ending in a long tart chapter that finishes unlike many other stories of it’s ilk.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
fordest (1994) - Santee/San Diego, California, USA - JUN 29, 2006
22 oz bomber. Pours Dark brown with a very nice off white head. Aromas are banana and clove. Fruity and spicy for sure. Sugary with a touch of alcohol. Flavors were very malt drivin. Still a ton of spice. Not as fruity as the aroma, but definitly still plenty of fruit. Alcohol is not as evideint as I thought it would be from the aroma. Very Good

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Dogbrick (8139) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - JUN 29, 2006
Pours a pretty dark brown color with ruby around the edges. Thick light beige head with very good retention, and a decent sheet of lacing. Aroma of toasted malt, spices and yeast. There is also a touch of peppery alcohol in the nose. Medium, spicy body with malt, clove and grassy hops flavors. Bittersweet finish of sweet malt and spicy hops. Pretty enjoyable as is, and I wonder what it will taste like in 6 years.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
505 (271) - Echo Park, California, USA - JUN 29, 2006
Aroma is pruney, strong malts, yeasty. Flavor is relatively complex, sweet, mild alcoholic finsih, some clove. Appearence is nice dark brown. Nice full body, a pretty beastly beer, pun intended.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
Lowe1983 (1349) - Dayton, Ohio, USA - JUN 28, 2006
Pours a dark brown color with a medium brown head. Aroma is of roasted malts, chocolate, caramel, dark fruits, and spices. Flavor was mostly the same with the more subtle flavors first that give way to the alcohol and slight bitterness. The bitterness lingers a little. Absolutely wonderful brew. I think I’m going to age a bottle of this.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Zeswaft (1370) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JUN 28, 2006
A pretty good belgian ale that blurs the line of dubbel and a brown ale. Lots of sweet malts and yeasty spiciness.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
bitbucket (2159) - Kirkland, Washington, USA - JUN 28, 2006
Pours dark reddish brown with a lacy tan head. Aroma is dried fruit, toffee, alcohol and spice. Body is creamy smooth with prickly carbonation. Flavor is fruit filled, with dried cherries, maybe some banana, roasty malt, and a big punchy taste of cloves. Finish is lighty bitter with cloves and a little pine. This beer grabs my taste buds from start to finish.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Brigadier (2975) - Clevelandish, Ohio, USA - JUN 28, 2006
UPDATED: OCT 4, 2006 Tosa Tasting - June 24, 2006

Thanks to 1FastSti for bringing this out. Now I don’t have to trade for a bottle to discover that it is a good but not outstanding entry in the Vertical Epic line. I’m not sure how they expect this one to hold up for six more years unless you stick it in a fridge at just above freezing. This was the last of the Dubbels on the night.

Aroma / Appearance - My nose was able to detect a hint of sweetness in the form of toffee or molasses, combined with a vague fruitiness. There was also a subtle hint of yeast sitting underneath that only came out after I closed my eyes. The body was a deep cherry color with only a trace of head. It looked somewhat like I would imagine a Dubbel to be.

Flavor / Palate - The first sip was a little hot, but once the alcohol settled down I got hints of bananas, cherries, malt and caramelized sugar. There was some smoke or roasted flavor lurking underneath that slowly came out. The finish was dry and relatively easy on the palate. This one could do with perhaps a little bit of aging, but not too much. For a Dubbel it is acceptable; however it is not mindblowing enough to make me want to rush out and get a vertical of the other four in the series.

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