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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 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
nearbeer (4917) - Knoxville, Tennessee, USA - DEC 16, 2012
650 ml. Opaque chocolate with a film of creamy bubbles. Spicy-sweet nose of allspice, cinnamon, brown sugar, and a hint of dirty banana and chocolate. Taste is clove, allspice, bubblegum, wheat, charred brown sugar, ginger, lemon zest, merlot, and hints of smoky sulfur and oak. Medium-heavy body is slightly to the sweet side, but finishes well balanced and has light carbonation. Kind of tastes like a dark pumpkin ale. Normally the spiced beers are a bit overdone for my tastes, but this one strikes a nice balance.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
RABinCO (1508) - Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA - DEC 16, 2012
Bottle. Pours nearly pitch black with a slight tan head that fades to a halo. Aroma is very christmas spicy. Overall kind of a typical christmas ale, which is typical with the latest Vertical Epics. the booze definitely comes through on this one with a slight burn on the end.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
LilBeerDoctor (3772) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 16, 2012
On tap at Fat Heads Pittsburgh. Pours a dark brown with a thin tan head. Aroma of cinnamon and allspice primarily with a touch of ginger. Flavor cinnamon (but more fiery, like those cinnamon fire ball candies), ginger, clove, and sweet malt. This is a spice-dominated beer and the Belgiany notes are well hidden. Still it’s pretty good, probably one of the better ones if my memory serves me accurately. 7/4/8/4/14 (3.7/5)

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
Kinz (3737) - Glen Allen, Virginia, USA - DEC 16, 2012
UPDATED: NOV 1, 2014 Sort of mixed feelings about the end of the vertical epic. Great concept. Some of the beers were worthy of the concept. Others, perhaps not. But at least now I don’t feel like I have to run out and buy two of any beer for a while. Pours a very dark brown, bordering on black. Aroma is pumpkin spice and faint chocolate. Flavor is a match. The clove doesn’t overwhelm, but it is definitely there. The allspice and cinnamon definitely show. A bit of a bread, chocolate malt backbone, dry on the finish. Just a bit too spiced for my tastes. It might fall down some over time, but I think that since it does finish dry, it may not be quite the good ager that some Belgian abbey beers are. I wish they had ended on something that was really truly meant to be consumed on the spot as the end of the epic as opposed to one that was more of a setting down brew. RERATE: Screaming clove. Really a poutpourri blast for me.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Maltajo (329) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - DEC 16, 2012
Bomber from Dchmela. A full bodied beer bursting with clove roasty malt and barley. I bet this pairs well with a nice steak!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
dchmela (3013) - Orlando, Florida, USA - DEC 16, 2012
Pours black with a thin off white head. Huge nose of clove and cinnamon as well as roasted grains. Smooth malt with lots of chocolate, cinnamon and roasted grain in the taste. Really amazing beer.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 18/20
HighWine (959) - Whalezbro, Illinois, USA - DEC 16, 2012
Bottle to Chimay glass. Dark brown, nearly black pour, beige head. Aroma of Christmas spice. Tastes just like a gingerbread cookie. Cinnamon, ginger, clove, and a very pleasant dark roastiness. Enjoyed this one a lot and it was a nice kickoff to our VE tasting.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
oRos (1560) - sacramento, California, USA - DEC 15, 2012
Bottle from citrus heights bevmo. Aroma is cinnamon ans spices. Color is black with brown head. Taste is hot cinnamon and ginger bread cookie.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 9/20
HonkeyBra (4036) - Lemont, Illinois, USA - DEC 15, 2012
22 oz. bottle. So this is how this ends, huh? Black pour. Thick tan head. Aroma of clove, all spice, some cinnamon and ginger. Maybe a touch of tar. Flavor is basically just clove, tons of other spice, maybe a bit of dirt. This is just so mediocre. The body is thin with blah carbonation. I’m not even sure what else to say about this.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
GT (9982) - Oceanside, California, USA - DEC 15, 2012
Tap at CK for 12.12.12 night! Thanks to craftycarl21 for the share. And by that I mean I just took his glass. Excellent appearance- thick creamy mocha foam, big retention, webby lacing. Clear blood ruby to near black pour. Nose is savory, big sage and lavender again. Are all of these beers spiced? Taste is light formaldehyde -__- rose hips, lavender, more garden spice/herbs, star anise and black pepper. Lactic palate with lemon acid and dark chocolate bite. Decent. Still weird.

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