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Stone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic Ale



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RATINGS: 758   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.68   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 252   ABV: 8.4%
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The Stone 08.08.08 Vertical Epic Ale is a Strong Golden Belgian style ale highly hopped with American hops (Ahtanum, Amarillo and Simcoe). The beer pours pale golden with a thick and creamy white head of foam. The aroma is full of depth: nuances of pepper, clove, and banana from the Belgian yeast strain, and the resiny citrus notes from the American hops blend together nicely to provide a complex aromatic character. The taste is spicy, hoppy and fruity, with a very dry and a pleasant bitter end. The bitterness lingers nicely, and provides a refreshing finish that leads you to want to drink more and more of this beer!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
kmyers8807 (176) - Ohio, USA - NOV 18, 2010
Bottle. a little over 2 years under its belt. Golden color and minimal white head. Citrus and pine flavor, hops have faded but still noticeable. The malts is more present leading to a bit more spicy and light fruit than when fresh. I enjoyed this more than I planned.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
redave (165) - squaw valley, California, USA - OCT 4, 2009
Forgot that this was the IPA version, Pours a nice golden slightly amber color. champagney like bubbles, that simmer down like champagne. Aroma much like expected, spicy fruity. Taste, always a wow with these Belgian IPA’s, very complex, interesting spices, with the nice hop bitterness. Tasted great with a barbecued wild caught salmon for dinner, nice. Kinda like a dry champagne with some hops.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Underhook (162) - Lincoln Park, New Jersey, USA - AUG 30, 2008
Pours a bit darker than a typical Belgian. Smells banana, yeasty, bready. All of the good notes that a Belgian has, with some American notes such as a much higher rate carbonation, more citric fruitiness. The high carbonation almost makes me question whether or not it’s natural, but I doubt Stone would rape this brew with added CO2 like the macros do. Clearly an American take on the Belgian style, a bit of a step below pure Belgians but surely an interesting beer. Fun to drink, complex. As it warms the banana, honey, and yeastiness really comes out. There’s a lot of clove punch in here also now that it’s warmed. The aroma is actually more noticible now than when I opened the bottle. Very enjoyable, clearly a good deal of effort has been put into brewing this edition of Epic. Highly recommended. Get it soon before you can’t find it anymore!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
phukktifano (159) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - MAY 27, 2009
Pale clear gold with a thin white head. Aroma was fruit, hops and hay. Flavor was a bit spicy with a nice malt finish.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 18/20
ryanknock (150) - San Francisco, California, USA - JAN 15, 2009
A slightly thin but well balanced Golden Strong, grainy background with notes of banana, pear, and bright citrus from the three varieties of American citrus-hops (Antheum, Amarillio and Summit I’m told). This is a quite quaffable beer, despite its high ABV at almost 9%. Spicy, hoppy and fruity, a sweet beer with a bitter finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
BossHossBikes (148) - California, USA - OCT 28, 2008
Bottle. Pours a crystal clear bright gold with a pale head. The aroma is extremely strange. My nasal passages actually feel warm as I inhale. Initially there is a spike of floral and spiced bouquets. Malts that seem to resemble burnt cardboard quickly envelops the flowers and spices. It’s strange. The malty aroma feels like it’s affecting the walls of my nostrils instead of affecting my palate. The experience is unique. The flavour is also quite interesting. Initially, spiced and floral notes are prominent with a melon-like fruit (much like a honeydew) and honey close behind. With the mouth closed, fruit and honey flavours rapidly increases. But as air enters the mouth, notes of yeast become instantly apparent initially before the dry spiced and floral flavours burst along with some light hoppy bitterness. Alcohol is a subtle flavour, but is very noticeable as it warms the chest on its way down. Towards the finish, fruit and honey flavours slightly diminish. Spices fade slightly to introduce some grain flavours. Hops and a semi-metalic bitterness increases a little as well, complementing the spices. The finish is also dry... very dry.

I’m not a huge fan of spices. But this creates some interesting layering effects between the spice/floral and the fruit/honey flavours that I find rather neat and intriguing... and not to mention the aroma...

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
tangentrider (144) - Alabama, USA - AUG 20, 2008
Clear, gold beer with a white, disappearing head. Fine carbonation throughout. Aroma is clove and banana. Flavor is grassy, spicy, and a bit sweet. Finish is smooth, a bit bitter and nicely sweet. Very good beer.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
BallyLoser (136) - Redmond, Washington, USA - AUG 23, 2008
Bottle. Spicy aroma.Thick white head. Gold colour. Peach flavor up front, bitter spice finish.

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
GardenGabe (136) - Denver, Colorado, USA - MAR 22, 2009
Pour from 22oz is mostly clear yellow with creamy head white head and some lacing. Tart nose a little fruit, a little yeast. Medium body that sticks in the back of the throat. Taste of spice, hops and alcohol.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
stefanberggren (135) - Madison, Wisconsin, USA - AUG 5, 2008
Opening - good carbonation pop. Nose upon opening - phenolic, spicyness (yeast derived) Color -light straw, white head that fades after 30-50 seconds Taste/Flavor - phenolic, bitterness is more pronounced than most strong ales we have here (yes they are more bitter in Belgium when they are fresh) Spicy, Malty Alchohols are present, but seemingly subdude by the phenols. A little too sharp and astringent in the finish for me. Yeast character remains in the finish. Carbonation is lively and appropriate. Overall Its a nice drinkable beer that I think would pair very well with some Morbier cheese and some ripe pears. It does not seem to be very cohesive (possibly time) with regard to all of the flavors. Not bad, but not what I was expecting. I would buy again though...

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