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Stone 12.12.12 Vertical Epic Ale



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RATINGS: 666   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.66/5   EST. CALORIES: 270   ABV: 9%
As with any good epic, herein lies the promise of larger-than-life experiences, heroics, and twists and turns as the adventure unfolds. This bottle-conditioned ale is chapter eleven. Now is the time to enjoy it in a “vertical” tasting side by side with its ten Stone Vertical Epic Ale brethren! Each one unique to its year of release. Each with its own “twist & turn” in the plot line. Each one released one year, one month and one day from the previous year’s edition. This year’s Stone Vertical Epic Ale is the very last one. Yep, this is it. The final chapter. Or as they say on the last slide in some old films: “Fin.” No worries though: this edition is particularly well-suited for prolonging the experience, as it’s as cellarable as any in the series, or more. In this, the final edition, you can expect a perfectly balance *womp* of spices: cinnamon, ginger, allspice, sweet orange peel, clove (only a little!) and rosehips, all in the context of a dark Belgian style abbey-ish beer…but not as sweet. Dry even. Stone style. Thanks for coming on this Epic Stone-style journey with us! You can rest assured there will be new adventures to come…

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
theisti (3806) - Kansas, USA - FEB 24, 2013
22 oz bomber purchased at Royal in Kansas City, Missouri. The pour is a black brown with a 1/2 khaki head that falls quick. The aroma is licorice, nutmeg spice, maybe a touch of Robutussin, dark raisin fruit. Quite a bit going on here. The taste is the nutmeg spice, a bit of pumpkin pie, black licorice, anise, black roast patent malts, ash, raisin sweet, cough syrup booze in the back. Clove and cinnamon come at as it warmed. Ginger too. Is that orange peel making an appearance. Tons going on here, and many of the flavors clash pretty badly. Palate is medium to heavy bodied, silky carbonation, oily finish, and a hint of booze in the back. This is a pretty weird beer, tasted like a Belgian Ale that had been mixed with mulling spices. Not entirely my bag. Fitting this is the last in the line, this beer pretty much sums up taking "extreme brewing" too far.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
beernovice39 (3270) - Idaho, USA - FEB 23, 2013
Bottle pours a dark brown brew with a dark tan head. Scent is big spiciness. At one moment I am thinking pumpkin ale, the next Christmas. Taste is a spicy tour as well, allspice, nutmeg, ginger and cinnamon. Tasty.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 19/20
kevinator (1850) - The Colony, Texas, USA - FEB 23, 2013
Man, was this a surprise and was it awesome. The aroma was spices all the way. Cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves. I’m not sure what rose hips taste like, but I’m sure that was there too. Unexpected really dark color with minimal ring of a head. Average weight for the palate. Taste was much of the same with there being a slight Belgian influence. This gets high marks for being unique and the fact that all these flavors work. Great way to finish the series.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
cbkschubert (2901) - BFE, Arizona, USA - FEB 22, 2013
22 oz. bottle from Total Wine - Pours a brown color with a one and a half finger thick tan head. Light lacing. Has that pumpkin spice aroma. Flavor is spice, dark esters, and chocolate malt. Finish is fairly dry. Medium body. It’s better than the last couple VE beers.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
maxwelldeux (4325) - Snohomish, Washington, USA - FEB 21, 2013
Bottle. Pours an extremely dark brown with a thin tan head. Nose is very fragrant and spicy, with cinnamon and cloves dominating. Taste is spicy and very slightly sweet underneath. Interesting...

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
glennmastrange (2623) - hobe sound, Florida, USA - FEB 21, 2013
Bottle. Moderate to heavy dark bread, cookie and toasted for the malt, moderate cooked orange for the hops, dough and leather for the yeast, with notes of raisin, fig, clove and cinnamon. Head is small, creamy, light brown with fair slippery lacing and good legs and is mostly diminishing. Color is very dark brown. Flavor starts moderately to heavily sweet and lightly acidic, then the long finish is moderately sweet, lightly acidic and moderately to heavily acidic. Palate is medium to full, oily with a carbonation between soft and lively. It finishes chewy, sticky and dry. I’m usually not a fan of spiced up beers but they marry well in this Belgian Strong Ale.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
SaintMatty (6630) - Uppsala, SWEDEN - FEB 21, 2013
650ml Bottle - Black in colour. Liquorice, vinous fruits and some smoky hints in the aroma. Chocolatey, roasted, smoky and slightly sweet taste with notes of ash, chocolate and coffee detected.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
BoydJustitz (58) - Maryland, USA - FEB 20, 2013
Glass at RHSG. Dark brown/black medium beige head. Aroma: nutmeg, raisins and chocolate. Taste: Sweet and a bit bitter. Medium carbonation, full body, dry finish. Overall a better than average Belgian strong ale.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
beersak (91) - akron, USA - FEB 20, 2013
Excellent spicy beer with Christmas flavors. Black color with creamy tan-white head. Overall excellent flavor! ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
BeerKurve (520) - - FEB 19, 2013
Dark Brown with a brown head; excellent lacing retention. Very rich smell of caramel, pumpkin pie, spice, plums, and malts. Taste is rich taste of spices, caramel, plums, piney hops and spruce; Aftertaste is a bit resiny. Body is fairly light and the carbonation is very mild and adds quite a bit to the flavor. Probably one of the best beers I’ve had from Stone yet, and one of the best strong ales I’ve ever had

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