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Stone 09.09.09 Vertical Epic Ale



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RATINGS: 721   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.76/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 258   ABV: 8.6%
This is quite a complex and layered beer. Bold and smooth chocolate malt flavors combine with a Belgian yeast lending tropical fruit/banana flavors and hints of spiciness, all complemented by citrus notes from an addition of tangerine peel. Rich vanilla beans add a nice counter to the chocolate malt - actually enhancing the chocolatiness. The finish is smooth, with additional traces of vanilla and toasted characters from French Oak. The goal for this edition of the Stone Vertical Epic Ale series is to be reminiscent of artisanal chocolates accentuated with orange.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
RSRIZZO (1914) - Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA - SEP 22, 2009
From 22oz bottle in a Trappist glass at 43°. Color is black with mellow carbonation and a tight, thick brown head. Aroma is a deep roasted scent with back tones of fruit, yeast and oak. Taste is dry, toasted and spicy. Starting with a bold medium body it goes down rich with a slightly sharp feel. Finish jumps out roasted and burnt with a bold bitterness and bitter-sweet chocolate taste, then some vanilla, orange peel and an earthy soil like taste. After taste is dry, burnt and citric that leaves you with a black coffee taste. This is an interesting brew, I don’t get any Belgian notes from it and think it should be categorized as an Imperial Porter.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
JohnnyJ (5198) - San Diego, California, USA - SEP 21, 2009
Pours a deep brown mahogany with thick creamy tan head. Dark chocolate, truffle, berries, banana, vanilla, oak, hint of roasted coffee, and orange peel. I am a fan of this beer, will need to buy more.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 12/20
BrotherGrendel (787) - San Diego, California, USA - SEP 21, 2009
Bottle. Hue is deep dark brown with big thick tan head. Nose is dark chocolate and burnt coffee grounds, light vanilla with touch of citrus. Flavor is roasty dark chocolate and coffee, very subtle oak and vanilla accents, finishes with low malt sweetness. Medium-body with thin texture and modest atringency that lingers on the palate and detracts from flavor, very light sourness as well. An experimental porter that gets lost in a complicated recipe profile, further hampered by some modest flaws; I have no idea how this would age but wouldn’t bet too much on significant improvement with time.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
undsioux7 (869) - Eden Prairie, Minnesota, USA - SEP 21, 2009
Draft at Stone. My second time in 3 years at Stone bistro, but my first try at a stone vertical I do have 06 to 08 sitting in the fridge ready for 2012. Man I will be pissed if the world comes to and end before then. Pours deep brown with a nice tan head. This one suprised me with the coffee and chocolate notes. The stone clean hop citrus presents is there. There is a bit of belgian yeast. If the Yeast had more of an impact on this beer it would have been incredible.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
cbkschubert (2900) - BFE, Arizona, USA - SEP 21, 2009
22 oz. bottle from Plaza Liquors - Pours a deep brown color with a one and a half finger thick tan head. Light lacing. Aroma is dark chocolate, dark esters, roasted malt, light coffee, and spice. The flavor is very similar to the aroma with the roasted malt standing out a tad more. The citrus presence is very faint to me. Finish is dry and somewhat bitter. Medium body. A nice beer.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 15/20
jmm635 (966) - Havertown, Pennsylvania, USA - SEP 21, 2009
Pours very dark brown with a lighter brown head. Pretty thick. Burnt chocolate aroma with some citrus kick. Mainly dark, bitter chocolate taste with some toasted malts and sweet hops. Good amount of alcohol flavor throughout. Palate was a little rough... mainly a result of the alcoholic burn and a temperature that was a bit too low. I can see why they advise to age this brew.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Rusty (1545) - Mesa, Arizona, USA - SEP 21, 2009
Pours a deep brown with a nice brown head. Aroma is chocolate, esthers, alcohol, coffee, banana, spices, citrus, oak, nuts. Flavor is citrus, chocolate, hops, nuts, coffee, roasted malts, spices and smoke. Full on assault of the palate is imminent and it all comes together a little messy but still very interesting and enjoyable. I can’t wait to see how this one ages..............fresh it’s a genius mess.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
WeeHeavySD (3362) - Portland, Oregon, USA - SEP 21, 2009
Bomber I picked up today at Henry’s while grocery shopping today. This year’s wasn’t quite the priority of the past years for me but I did want to try it, so I bought it. Pours black with a big tan head. Its got the look of a big dark Belgian strong or imperial stout. Nose is sweet and chocolaty with spices. Taste is sweet and chocolaty overall pretty good, vanilla and oaky smoke is there too.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
neepsntatties (1578) - Portland, Oregon, USA - SEP 21, 2009
Got to sample a bottle of this last night. Colour... very dark garnet with a thin head. Nose... some chocolate, citrus and butyl esters. Palate... immediately sharp and metallic then cocoa mass, vanillin (not vanilla-maybe due to the metallic sensation), orange-like citrus, a roasty quality and a long finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
ruskiimperial (308) - Richmond, Virginia, USA - SEP 20, 2009
On tap at Capital Ale House Innsbrook (richmond,va). The pour had some nice tan head on it, with a nice rich darkness you come to expect from a stone beer. The smell is quite sweet with hints of clove and burnt caramel. The taste mixes in the spicy-like flavor with some toffee and a bit of chocolate. I would personally consider this more of a stout with some strong belgian characteristics as the body is quite thick and darker than even a strong belgian in my opinion. On the aftertaste there is a fair amount of citrus hops that come across the otherwise sweet and spicy characteristics of this interesting brew. This may actually age well, unlike some of the other vertical epics.

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