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RATINGS: 870   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.67/5   SEASONAL: Series   IBU: 45   EST. CALORIES: 267   ABV: 8.9%
In 2008, Stone Brewmasters Steve Wagner and Mitch Steele traveled to Belgium, where they enjoyed a number of hop-forward Belgian tripels, pale ales and IPAs—beers that had taken a cue from the U.S. craft brewing movement and inspired us in return. It’s a big reason 2008’s summer season came to be known at Stone as our “Summer of the Triple.” Upon their return, they crafted Stone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic Ale, the seventh beer in the 11-beer Stone Vertical Epic Ale series. Packed with floral, spicy essence from Belgian yeast plus plenty of hoppy New World character, it’s our West Coast take on hop-driven Belgian beers.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
Cobra (1100) - - AUG 28, 2008
22 oz. brown bomber. Poured out a golden straw color, with a sticky tan colored head. Aromas are of cloves right off the bat. No banana or pepper in this bottle. Flavors are of cloves, sweet malts, lime leaves. Medium mouthfeel, decent body. Sub-par effort from Stone this time.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
screigh (559) - Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA - AUG 28, 2008
Pours a hazy golden color like a wheat beer color. No head at all. Aroma is sweet, bready and a hint of saison. Taste is a little tart, peppery and again a little like a saison. Bitterness sticks around and a definite alcohol when you breathe. I tasted this thing blind, not knowing at all what style it was until I read the deScription here. I immediatly placed it as some Belgian style and it caught me off gaurd. I cannot taste the Amarillo hops at all. A decent beer but not a style I care for.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
flatmatt (1347) - Northville, Michigan, USA - AUG 27, 2008
22 oz bottle, finally found at my local grocery store. Pours golden amber with minimal head. Aroma is bubblegum yeast up front with some definite hops, but the hops are mostly masked by the strong yeast aromas. Flavor strikes an interesting balance of bubblegum/clove and hoppy citrus, hints of banana and alcohol. At first, it’s a little chalky, and the yeast seems to fight the hops too much. Balance improves dramatically as it warms, and actually becomes quite a nice hoppy Belgian. Let this one warm up more than usual.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
garthicus (2842) - Dublin, IRELAND - AUG 27, 2008
Shared with HogTownHarry, GregClow, Tupalev,Jerc & Blankboy -- courtesy of HogTownHarr. Appearance: Golden with a banana hue, small white head. Aroma: Banana, citrus, pepper. Flavour: Bitter, pepper, copper, lemon - so lovely, nice bitter finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Zinister (1423) - Houston, Texas, USA - AUG 27, 2008
Nice golden pour with decent white head. Smells like Belgium. Cloves, spices and hops, hops, hops. Nose is like a tripel, but hoppier. Flavor is full and flavorful, with a bit of peppery spices mixed in with the hops and grainy malts. Pretty nice now, but like to save the other bottle for later to see how this develops.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
JMFG (1587) - Florida, USA - AUG 27, 2008
On tap @ Stone, RBSG. Very clear golden color, bits of white head. Some bubblegum phenols, Belgian malts, light citric spice component on the nose. Nice effervescent palate. Sweeter grainy taste, some spice on the back end, alcohol quite apparent for the ABV.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
BeerBelcher (972) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - AUG 27, 2008
This beer struck me as being quite like a tripel; but not an exceptional one. I enjoyed it quite a bit - it was spiced, mild mannered, and maybe a little more complex than is the norm in American-made tripels or Belgian golden ales, but I didn’t find it to be anything spectacular. Color was a gold/dark yellow with modest head and minimal lacing. Aroma was quite a bit hoppier than other Belgian style beers I’ve had, and had the requisite clove/coriander spiciness. The hops also drove flavor, which was a fair bit more complex than other beers of this style. Mouthfeel was a bit thick without losing its refreshingness. Pretty good. I would recommend this beer. I bought this bottle at Discount Liquor in Milwaukee.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Guerde (1261) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - AUG 27, 2008
(bottle thanks Skyview!) Pours gold with a small white head. This aroma is dominated by citrusy hops, most notably grapefruit, and what smells like mint. As with the aroma, the taste is also quite hoppy with coriander spice, candi sugar sweetness, and a lingering bitter hop finish. Mouthfeel is medium.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
SCBrew (31) - San Clemente, California, USA - AUG 27, 2008
I’ve been looking forward to this one for a while and it did not dissapoint! Pours yellow-gold with moderate white head. Really nice "beligian gold" aroma of clove and spice, with a lot of hop character. Hop aroma is piney and citrusy. Flavor is a delicious balance of spice and sweetness wrapped around citrus from the hops. Good carbonation. Really liked this one! Don’t know if I can save the others unitl 12-12-12.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
Aquilo (596) - Berkeley, California, USA - AUG 27, 2008
I always get excited by seasonals. This one is quite good all around; very drinkable and relaxing, but nothing too complex. Nothing to challenge your taste buds here. Let me break it down for you: Pours yellow with a white head. The color isn’t pleasing to the eye in my opinion, so I dimmed the lights, and it looked fine. Smell is sweet like cotton candy with a hint of popcorn. Flavor is eucalyptus, perhaps pine, and grapefruit. Very smooth and wet going down. Wonderful.

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