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Stone 12.12.12 Vertical Epic Ale



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RATINGS: 669   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 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
baraciisch (2904) - California, USA - JAN 15, 2013
Dark black with tan head... Aroma of cinnamon and spices... Belgian malts, brown sugar with West Coast hops... Still slightly dry on the finish... Belgium meets West... Delicious ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
ccex (1199) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - JAN 15, 2013
Bomber pours an opaque dark brown/black with a decent tan had and lacing. Aroma is full of ginger, cinnamon, orange peel, cloves, and chocolate, with lots of other stuff going on. Tastes sweet with a slightly drier finish. Body is full with a wonderful velvety smooth mouthfeel Alcohol is very well hidden. This one is a delight of a dessert beer. I’m glad to have tried it and regret not having tried earlier years’ versions.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
leah2974 (453) - Georgia, USA - JAN 15, 2013
Black color with tab head. Sweet orange and big spices--nutmeg, cinnamon. Pine needle hops. Warm and cozy.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
flatmatt (1487) - Northville, Michigan, USA - JAN 14, 2013
22 oz bottle. Pours black with a tan head. Ginger, cinnamon, clove, yeasty aromas hinting at cocoa. Flavor mixes dry roasty coffee with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, black pepper, and some kind of eggy/creamy sensation that makes it reminiscent of an egg nog or an alfredo. It works really well, actually. Very good stuff.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
SDalkoholic (2359) - Linda Vista, California, USA - JAN 14, 2013
Bottle from Spout’s: Turns out I will be in for a nice surprise since I had absolutely no knowledge of this beer recipe until I poured myself a glass tonight. Anyways, the beer poured a dark blackish brown color and was topped with a monstrous sizing of foam. Aroma is vivid and delivers soft delicate scents of spices such as cinnamon, dried mint, allspice, and a bit of rose water all while a sturdy base of mildly roast malt hold everything together. The smell of the yeast does have similarities to Belgian yeast but smells as though it is not an authentic strain. As for the drink, an extremely smooth velvet like palate that goes down easy which is why I awarded a perfect palate score of 5 points. The flavor is rich and robust with dark roast malts that suggest towards chocolate or light ground coffee bean but what truly makes the flavor of this beer stand out from the rest if the Belgian yeast used. It absolutely blows me away with how subtle and perfect the notes of spice actually are in this year’s Vertical Epic with all of the aforementioned spices I described in my nose. This is a well crafted dark Belgian strong style beer that i find to be balanced in full in every aspect of this recipe. Job well done Stone, you finished the Vertical Epic series with a true winner.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Johnsense (1368) - - JAN 14, 2013
Black pour, a thumbs worth of pillowy tan head. Aroma of Christmas - roasted malt, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg. Spicy up front, Cinnamon, Ginger, Allspice, Nutmeg, Molasses, Slight ginger, roasted malt, Raisin. Lower carbonation, smooth body. Nice winter beer.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
joshmcg000 (388) - Iowa, USA - JAN 14, 2013
Pours dark black with dark pillowy head. Aroma is very spicy, cinnamon and ginger mostly. Slick mouthfeel, creamy texture. Very spicy, cinnamon, ginger, pumpkin spice. Almost to spicy for me. With dark roasty malts and a bitter piney hop finish. Pretty unique stuff, and it hides the alcohol % well.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
oc4111 (119) - USA - JAN 13, 2013
Pours a dark brown with a two finger dark mocha colored head that dissipates with no lacing. The description says it’s an Abbey ale but this pours more like a stoit. Aroma is just a medley of spices a hint of belgian yeast, along wirh a faint trace of vanilla. Taste has those elements but does finish a bit astringent from the hops which goes back to my stout comparison. Overall nicely balanced beer that I’m sure would mellow out with some aging

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
Gachupines (1251) - USA - JAN 13, 2013
Dark brown, almost black with a tan head. Aroma is heavily spiced, I noticed nutmeg, cinnamon and allspice. Flavor is very sweet and malty with a strong spice presence with the above mentioned flavors. Also present is a substantial licorice flavor which is not entirely unpleasant but is a bit overwhelming. Decent, this might be a little better if it had time to mellow though.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
mcberko (14665) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - JAN 13, 2013
22 oz. bottle, pours a deep dark brown with a small tan head. Aroma of nutmeg, burnt caramel, and molasses. Flavour of burnt molasses, caramel, brown sugar, and some slight nutmeg and cinnamon spices. Very ful-bodied and dominated by the burnt molasses and caramel. Surprisingly delicious stuff.

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