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Stone 06.06.06 Vertical Epic Ale



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RATINGS: 619   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.72/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 260   ABV: 8.66%
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 yearís edition.

In this yearís edition, youíll 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 itís part of the Stone family. This ale was brewed with a specialty Belgian yeast that weíre really liking here at Stone...itís 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 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
jimvy (131) - OíFallon, Missouri, USA - AUG 8, 2006
Bomber. Aroma is malty sweetness, some dark malts, licorice. Some bubblegum notes. Clear, dark, ruby notes, thick tan head that last. Flavor - very interesting beer. Sweet, malty, but dominated by the belgian characteristics, especially bubblegum and clove. Overall, a very different and interesting brew--like a brown porter with belgian yeast. Sweetness might be a little much, but I enjoyed the brew.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
nahthan (129) - Oakland, California, USA - JUL 30, 2007
Nice and dark with a thick viscosity that lets you know right away youíre in for an alcohol bomb. Nice complexity. Roasty, and a little smoky. If someone gave this to me and told me this was barrel aged, Iíd probably believe them. Sometimes dubbels are a bit too sweet and thick in the mouth, this was not. Very tasty esters from the yeast - plum, dried fruits, a little fig and some moderate clove/phenolics. Very digestable. Nice dubbel. I think Iíll keep the other bottle for a few more years.

   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 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
IPAndy (120) - minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - JUL 20, 2006
Aroma is smokey and fruity. Flavor is extremely comforting- sweet (banana?)and spicy with sort of a roasted anise flavor. What I would imagine a Belgian Abbey Stout to taste like. Finish is nicely bitter and slightly funky, and they are right... no astringency at all. One of my favorite Stone brews so far.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
marvinpontiac (117) - Huntington Beach, California, USA - DEC 11, 2006
Pours a dark reddish brown and a medium off white head. Lots of crystal malt like the rest of the Stone brews. Not quite Belgian by my taste and little aroma but some good sweet roasted maltiness with some dried fruits and little to no hop bitterness.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
rallison (116) - USA - JUL 11, 2008
Relatively malty in the aroma with a fair amount of fruity esters. Slight hints of molasses. Decent but not great smell. Decent head that diminishes to basically nothingness. Brown body with a reddish tint. Fruity taste with some toffee/molasses/brown sugar notes. Slightly spicy on the back-end. Slight alcohol presence. Some roast and bitterness. Odd mixture of flavors. I don’t think this meshes all that well. Medium carbonation, slightly creamy mouthfeel. Slightly alcoholic and spicy finish. Ok. Overall, meh. For the price I paid, not bad. Will this stand up until 2012? Definitely not convinced of that.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
DuffLover (111) - Hoboken, New Jersey, USA - AUG 10, 2006
From a 22 oz. Aroma is malt and spice. Appearance is a dark reddish brown with a moderate light tan head. smooth - Flavor is malt with some caramel and mild spice. Palate is very smooth and thick with fairly mild carbination, which I like. An excellent beer. Stone puts out some great brews!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
brew4all (103) - Las Vegas, Nevada, USA - AUG 24, 2006
Dark pour with a thin head. Aroma was solid with hints of dark fruits and brown sugar. The taste was laced with malt, spices, dark fruits, and raisens. The beer finished strong with a lasting sweet bitterness and malt feel.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
bindpmc (88) - San Diego, California, USA - JUN 8, 2006
UPDATED: JUN 10, 2006 Bottle at the Liars Club, (possibly the best bar ever-although Iíve said it before). I hesitate to call myself a Liars Club regular, but letís just say the bartender saw (and remembered) me, and insisted I try this beer. I dare say I think his enthusiasm was more because it is so newly available and not because of the product itself. It just tastes young. It says right on the bottle to age it, as all the Verts from Stone do, but you just gotta try the new one when it comes out each year, donít you? Dark reddish-black pour. tastes like a glass of Dr. Pepper with some raisins or other dried fruit mixed in. Not much in the way of nose, other than a faint suggestion of roasted malts. Mellow and drinkable for how young it is...was taken aback when told it was 8.6%, as there was little burn. Certainly a unique beer, and it has a pleasing sweet malt finish. Just tastes a little less than what I thought it would be. Not a lot of oomph, if I can be totally obtuse about it. Iíd be curious to shelf a bottle for a year and see if more complexity develops as a result. EDIT- Perhaps a case of one too many brews at Liars Club, but I origianally listed this as a draught. I woke up today to see I got a beermail from Greg, who most likely is Greg Koch, the mighty ruler of Stone, (and all around good guy, Iíve met him at a couple of beer functions). He thanked me for the review and corrected me in that Liars Club does not have this on draught but only in bottles. And yes, I did have it in bottle, which I should have remembered since I spent a good amount of time reading the info on the label. Greg, if you see this, thanks for pointing that out. As penance for my mistake, I will drink large amounts of Imperial Russian Stout, which is one of my favorite beers in the world (and I recently scored a bunch of it at my corner store).

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
UnionBeerCzar (82) - Michigan, USA - DEC 27, 2012
Bomber to snifter. These came straight from the distributor so I know they have been hanging in a warehouse for nearly 6 years. Even popped fresh when I uncapped her. Pours a slightly murky brown/black slightly translucent on the edges. Small tan head which dissipates quite quickly, virtually no lacing. Very little aroma when it was cold, as it warmed and I refreshed the glass I got some figgy raisin malty nose attributes. This drinks like some Corsendonk Browns I laid down back in the day, maybe this even held up better. Low carbonation but not inadequate, medium to full mouthfeel. Lots of molasses, brown sugar, and tabaco. Really pleased with how this held up I enjoyed drinking this little part of Stone history. Finish is long and dry and sort of chocolate-ly. Whoa there is some vanilla bean going on as well. This beer is solid, I wish I could have charted itís progression or had one fresh. Alas, happy with the one I had. Slainte

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