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Stone 09.09.09 Vertical Epic Ale



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RATINGS: 699   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.76   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 258   ABV: 8.6%
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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 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
MmmcKay (1049) - Brentwood, Tennessee, USA - SEP 18, 2009
DO NOT OPEN YET. Give it time....Dark, dark brown in color...almost black. Notes of anise, coriander, apricot, cardamom, dark chocolate, instant coffee, oldish coffee, bitter cocoa. Lots of fruit especially on the front of the palette and tip of the tongue. Mid palette and finish really picks up the bitter, roasty coffee and chocolate flavors. The beer is full of complexity. Truth is that it has a ridiculous amount of aromas and flavors going on. However, there does not appear to as of yet to be any focus. Lacks any sort of anchor flavor that ties in all the other flavors. This beer needs time. It needs some bottle age and some time to relax from shipping. It may have bottle shock at this point still.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Barrios (1243) - Nashville, Tennessee, USA - SEP 18, 2009
Poursr a lasting ring of tan head with a dark brown body. Aromas of oak, vanilla, chocolate, coffee, vegetal. Similar flavor. Bitter finish.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Taverner (1076) - San Ramon, California, USA - SEP 18, 2009
Pours black with tan head. Roasty aroma, with smell of candi and vanilla. Thick and spicy flavor, that is sweet but finishes clean. Smooth with notes of coffee and cola in the finish.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Butters (3684) - Richmond, Virginia, USA - SEP 18, 2009
Bottle shared with slines and MmmcKay. Pours a very near black with ring of brown head. Nose is anise, coriander, chocolate, coffee. Flavor is not quite as good. It is ’overly blended’ imo. No real stand out flavors, just a melding of chocolate, oak, and citrus, maple, vanilla. I just don’t know if I can get behind this one. Semi bitter finish. Maybe this one will be better on 12/12/12....

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
thelizard (46) - Santa Barbara, California, USA - SEP 17, 2009
Bottle from Frugal MacDoogal’s in Nashville. Pours black with a brown head that stays for the length of the drink. Chocolaty aroma. Okay, the taste is something else. From what I can tell, I’ll say that it was a complex porter. A lot of coffee and chocolate tastes, but like a hint of... banana? Anyways, it was good, and I’m going to buy another bottle to age.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
Ratman197 (9014) - Arvada, Colorado, USA - SEP 17, 2009
Bomber poured a clear dark brown with a lasting brown head. Aromas of bitter chocolate, vanilla, light citrus and light roastiness. Palate was medium bodied and smooth. Flavors of bitter chocolate, roastiness, vanilla and light citrus with a smooth lingering chocolatey finish. Tastes like a decent stout, but nothing Belgian or fruity like the bottle says.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 3/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 10/20
Odeed (1774) - Bakersfield, California, USA - SEP 17, 2009
black body with a dark brown head.the aroma is a mix of oatmeal,chocolate,vanilla.with a roasted nutty finish.flavor is a mix of smoke,burnt roasted malts,ash,alcohol,chocolate,and a strange bitter/spicy finish.reminds me of skullsplitter in a way.and i did not care for the beer either.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
GranvilleTim (1415) - Granville, Illinois, USA - SEP 17, 2009
On tap at Three Floyds. Deep dark pour with a thick brown head. Roasted malt aroma along with hints of chocolate, sweet fruits, yeast. Flavor was roasted malt, hints of vanilla, oak, citrus. The flavors came out as the beer warmed in my hand. It was served too cold in my opinion. Good thing for patience.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
esjaygee (3903) - Oak Creek, Wisconsin, USA - SEP 16, 2009
Thanks to Jim for bringing the bottle. Dark brown with a medium creamy head. Aroma of roasted malt, chocolate with hints of citrus and coffee. Taste of roasted malt, chocolate, mild alcohol, and some light orange on the finish. Mild roasted bitterness and minor warming as it warmed.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 13/20
drjay44 (2479) - Salida, Colorado, USA - SEP 16, 2009
22 oz. bottle. 8.9% ABV per the bottle.. Pours a thin mocha head, with a bit of lacing over a clear, dark brown (SRM 40) body.....nose is dominated by coffee and chocolate, with a bit of vanilla and wood....taste initially is coffee bitterness, which evolves into mild sweet malt and finishes with further coffee/hop bitterness which lingers.....mouth feel is thick and creamy, and this is aided by the medium carbonation. I understand that this is young and needs some time to mature. I was still somewhat disappointed, because the kilned and heavily roasted malts really dominated more than I expected. It will be interesting to check its maturation. Also this is really on the absolute edge of the Belgian Strong category. How about calling it an Imperial Porter??

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