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Stone 10.10.10 Vertical Epic Ale



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RATINGS: 626   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.52/5   EST. CALORIES: 285   ABV: 9.5%
This ninth edition of our Stone Vertical Epic Ale series takes two interesting left turns. A Belgian-style golden triple is the starting point of this beer, but the first left turn is nearly immediate with the addition of dried chamomile flowers, triticale, and Belgian amber candi sugar. The second, and rather unusual left turn takes us half an hour up the road from Stone to Temecula courtesy of the addition of just-pressed Muscat, Gewurztraminer and Sauvignon Blanc grapes from our friends at South Coast Winery. As the Stone Vertical Epic Ale series has moved through the calendar, we found that the brewing schedule for a 10.10.10 release coincided nicely with the grape harvest, neatly providing an interesting twist in this epic ale.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
GMCC2181 (1591) - Newark, Delaware, USA - NOV 17, 2010
Bottle picked up at SL. Pours a yellow color, with a big frosy white head. Tart aroma, with some bready maltiness. Beer temperture was on the warmer side 55 degrees. Taste is intially tart, then a sweet candy sugar comes through on the tounge. Little to sweet for my taste, but not bad at all. Body is on the lighter side. Overall: I expect hoppy beers from stone and the rest of the CA brewers... so even though this isnt bad just a little let down. Wouldnt buy one again.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
biznizness (1128) - Charlotte, North Carolina, USA - NOV 24, 2010
Interesting character... one of my problems with these types of limited edition beers is that you really need to drink quite a bit of the beer to get your head totally around it... especially these complicated ones. And the limited edition makes that hard and expensive. So, the verdict is... good, but I want more.

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
dionysian_son (277) - Colorado, USA - OCT 14, 2010
Smells like dish water. Starts light and moves into a smooth amber finishing with faint grapes and banana esters. Solid but could be more momentous

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
fiver29 (1036) - Cleveland, Ohio, USA - OCT 17, 2010
Bottle pours clear amber orange color with off white head. Aroma is belgian yeast, white pepper, and herbal spice. Lively carbonation on the mouthfeel. Flavor is more belgian tripel, spicy, peppery, and finishes dry. I don’t get any wine notes here at all. Tastes more like a belgian tripel than anything. Just average.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
golubj (1377) - San Mateo, California, USA - OCT 21, 2010
Bottle. Orange pour with very little head. Flavor is is semi-sweet juice, yeasty, some belgian malt, and wine essences. Aroma is grapey and yeasty; pretty strange to me. Flavors seem fabricated.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
dionysus (1485) - Arizona, USA - OCT 22, 2010
Bottle pours orange-gold with a white head. Aroma is dusty and doughy yeast, reinforced with underlying floral/fruit notes (primarily from the gewurtz and sauv blanc), a touch of bubblegum and toast. Flavor shows basically the same. Overall body is moderate, with sweet belgian candi sugar quickly being dried by a somewhat astringent oak presence.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 11/20
dmac (5599) - Toms River, New Jersey, USA - OCT 22, 2010
22 oz bomber from Jonathan Ron Brielle. Poured a great looking clear orange body with an average size frothy white head with lots of continually rising carbonation. Aroma was largely comprised of something between wine and grapes along with a heavy dose of yeast, crusty grains, rock candy and dried tropical fruits. Medium bodied with slightly strong tight bubbly carbonation and a dry finish with a touch of alcohol heat that is so subtle it’s not even noticed until it’s almost at the bottom of your throat. Flavor reminds me a lot of church, chunky bread dipped in cheap wine. This one just tries to hard and has to many ingredients going on for it for any one of them to make a nice addition. Basically it’s easily drinkable but just to complicated for it to translate.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
ante (3374) - Stockholm, SWEDEN - DEC 4, 2010
Bottle. Pours out in a shady golden colour with a small creamy white head. Sweetish and yeasty aroma of candid sugar, jasmine, dried oranges, mild apricots with hints of green grapes and peppery alcohol. Full-bodied with sweet and clean notes of pale malts, candid sugar, mild cinnamon, green grapes and grass. Long sweet and clean finish of candid sugar, pale malts, oranges, green bananas, mild herbs, yeast and almonds. I’m not convinced with this Epic version either, way to streamlined for a Belgian style ale.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 12/20
SanfordBrewer (1502) - Sanford, Florida, USA - JAN 14, 2011
Hazy amber orange, thin white head, sticky full body, high carbonation.

Aroma: wheat tartness, belgian or weizen yeast esters, pale malt, stale hops, alcohol, and chamomile.

Taste: belgian triple, lots of yeast esters, alcohol, pale malt, stale hops, wheat tartness, spicy grain, citrus, dry grassy chamomile, and a bit of bright fruity twang from the grapes.

not much actual grape flavor, but plenty of added dimensions and complexity. The grapes do become more apparent about a pint in, but the pale malt and yeast esters of the tripel are still the main features. Interesting food pairing possibilities.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
emarkd (100) - Georgia, USA - FEB 28, 2011
Pours very orange with a small head. Aroma is mostly chamomile with something sour around the edge, like old chamomile tea left too long in the pot. Some earthy, musty smells come out as the beer warms. The grapes dominate the taste, very wine-like. The citrus hops tastes come through in the end. The beer is very thick in the mouth with plenty of alcohol warmth. The flavors here work pretty well together but I found it way too sweet.

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