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Stone 12.12.12 Vertical Epic Ale

 (RETIRED)
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95
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RATINGS: 645   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.66   EST. CALORIES: 270   ABV: 9%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
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…


4.7
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
thorongil2 (1544) - , Ontario, CANADA - FEB 18, 2013
(bottle) very dark brown with a medium tall brown head; aromas of cloves, brown sugar; dry spicy flavour with a long strong bitter finish, excellent

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
wxman (1535) - O’Fallon, Illinois, USA - DEC 23, 2012
Pours an opaque dark dark brown with a full tan head and plenty of lace. Aroma is clearly ginger and a host of other spices. Taste is semi-sweet roasted malt, coffee, cinnamon and clove. Pretty busy, to say the least. Not especially bitter, except for that derived from the roasted grain. Another damned good Vertical!

4.3
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
mikedR (1528) - Gilbert, Arizona, USA - JAN 6, 2013
Absolutely wonder Belgian ale. Super dark malty base that is not super carbonated and not sweet at all. By itself this makes the ale great. But the spices -- wow! I'm definitely picking up cardamom and cinnamon, and somehow they all work together to elevate the beer. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

4
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
ansermadide (1526) - Kyle, Texas, USA - DEC 30, 2012
As little as I enjoy dark Belgians, this is really a gorgeous beer, with a pitch-black color and a beautiful, medium brown colored head that leaves some classy, thick, shimmering lacing. It has an incredibly unique, powerful aroma packed with cloves, ginger, and orange. What makes all of these spices alright: the heavy, roasted malts. This smells very much like many of the fall/winter seasonal pumpkin beers that have been coming out as of late (in particular, Saint Arnold Pumpkinator). Wow, what a nose. And thank you, Stone, for keeping the yeast out of it. In the mouth you’re in for something a little wild and completely different from what the aroma lets on. It’s slightly thinner than you’d expect of its pitch black color, soft and creamy. What’s fantastic about the flavor is how they pulled off how to compliment the intense roasted flavor with the intense spices to not only make each of the parts easy to drink and unoffensive when tasted individually, but also combined to produce a fantastically well-balanced and complex beer that manages to feel smooth and almost creamy as a whole. Wow. The intense spice content and heavily roasted malts ball up in the center of the tongue and are so strong that they make your tongue curl up in fear… but then the beer lulls it back into submission with its smooth character. As crazy of a beer this is, it’s really very good. One thing, though: the warmer it gets, the harsher and more uncomfortable the roasted malt bitterness becomes, so drink it between 50-55 degrees. Now, Being the last of the Vertical Epic series, I’m putting a bottle of this away in the cellar for an indefinite amount of aging.

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
charule (1520) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - FEB 1, 2015
Bottle from back in the day. Poured black with tan head. Aroma rich dark fruit licorice. Light carb med bod. Light bitter choc light fruit. Better then I thought

3.3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
stefannilssons (1519) - SWEDEN - NOV 18, 2013
De här ’epic’ ölen som man lyckats lägga vantarna på ibland har alltid vara positiva upplevelser, oavsett om det handlat om smak eller innovation/nyskapande. Men här blev jag faktiskt besviken, även om det här faktiskt inte var en dålig eller mindre välsmakande öl. Smaken kraftfull med toner av nejlika, belgisk jästkultur och andra kryddor, dock bör det påpekas att det var nejlikan som gick i första, andra och tredje ledet.

3.2
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Beardface (1517) - Eugene, Oregon, USA - DEC 23, 2012
Tap at 16 Tons. Dark brown pour with a moderate tan head and no lacing. Just a massive mishmash of spices all thrown together into a melting pot of smells and tastes where nothing stands out and everything is muddled. Disappointing way for the series to go out.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
bluejacket74 (1511) - Reynoldsburg, Ohio, USA - DEC 21, 2012
22 ounce bottle. Served in a goblet, the beer pours dark brown/black with a half inch tan head. Head retention is good, and there’s a decent amount of lacing. Aroma is nice, the brew smells like allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, molasses, orange peel, roasted malt, cloves, and some dark fruit. Taste is pretty much just like the aroma, it tastes like allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, molasses, chocolate, roasted/charred malt, and some dark fruit and licorice. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it’s a bit creamy and has good carbonation. I liked this brew, not a bad way to end the Vertical Epic series. $8.99 a bottle.

4.8
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
Heathen (1500) - Wilmington, Delaware, USA - JUN 30, 2013
THOUGHTS: Wonderful and very Christmasy. Tons of spices but they never overpowered the huge malt base. I did not want this one to end. Hid alcohol incredibly well. TECHNICAL: Bottle. Poured an opaque black with an average, light brown head that mostly, but slowly diminished and left excellent lacing. The aroma had moderate caramel and chocolate syrup; hints of coffee; dark fruit; cinnamon, which maybe the strongest aroma; oranges; holiday spices; dark spice cake; and spiced cookies. The initial flavor was light to moderately sweet; while the finish was moderate to heavily sweet and lightly bitter with a long duration. There was caramel, chocolate syrup, holiday spices, oranges, dark fruit, dark spiced cake, spice cookies, chocolate and hints of coffee. The full body was creamy with soft but copious carbonation and a dry finish.

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Beerathon (1491) - Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 30, 2012
Love it when a beer surprises me, and this one did due to its uniqueness. The clove is upfront from beginning to end. Nice alcohol feel to it. A Belgian style dark ale that had flavors that aren’t typical for the style. Interesting for sure.


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