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Stone 12.12.12 Vertical Epic Ale



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RATINGS: 651   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.66   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 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
MaBeer1972 (1506) - Taunton, Massachusetts, USA - MAR 12, 2013
Bottle from Julios. Pours out jet black with a thick coffee-cream head that fades to a thin lace. super aromatic herbal and spicy aroma. Big and chewy flavors. Goes down very smooth though. Lots of spice, some sweetness, some smoke, some coffee notes. Nice bitterness to balance. Finish is herbal and smoky.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
JHeath99 (1503) - Warner Robins, Georgia, USA - NOV 19, 2013
Bottle. Pours dark opaque amber with a thin layer of toffee colored head. Aroma of nutmeg and what definitely hints toward Old Bay or some other spice. Taste of spice, earth, and wood.

   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.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Zeswaft (1493) - Charleston, South Carolina, USA - JAN 13, 2013
This is a massive surprise. Pours our thick black and dark tan head. The abundance of spices leap out. Flavors of cinnamon and allspice, balanced handily with rich roasted malts and chocolate, plus a healthy dose of hops. The best way that I could describe this is as an imperial pumpkin/spice stout. Freaking delicious and dangerously drinkable.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
pdx77 (1484) - Oregon, USA - DEC 21, 2012
On draught at Bailey’s Taproom. Deep, dark pour with chocolate head. Spicy taste, just riding the edge on being too much spice.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
Sarlacc83 (1480) - Portland, Oregon, USA - AUG 26, 2013
22oz bottle. The end. A: Opaque black with a thin brown head. Sticks to the side of the glass. N: Orange, cinnamon, nutmeg, clove, chili pepper, molasses allspice, and pumpkin. To call this Christmas in a bottle might make it sound better than it is, but it’s apt. T: Bitter and spicy. Lots of flavor, but they’re not what I’d call good - in fact it’s more of a massive overload. M: Thick and dry. Medium bodied. O: This is my least favorite by far. There’s just too much going on here, and it never comes together - it’s the throw everything into the kettle approach which I don’t much like.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
jmikolich (1477) - North Ridgeville, Ohio, USA - DEC 19, 2012
22oz bottle, thanks Brett! Well the gimmick is over, a nice looking beer with lots of deep hues in the color, but the taste is as stone describes it, with a womp of spice, too much spice that muddles together..

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 19/20
kevinator (1475) - 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 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
trevor211 (1466) - Seattle, Washington, USA - DEC 16, 2012
On tap at Brouwer’s for 12/12/12. Beautiful black pour, weird gray-brown head. Nose is a burst of baking spices. Lots of cloves, some allspice, cinnamon, and a dash of cayenne (though without heat). Flavor keeps all of them, adding chocolate and brown sugar. This is an overpowering baked good in a glass. Strange, and overdone.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
lamas (1466) - Washington DC, USA - JAN 19, 2013
22 oz. bottle. A deep mahogany pour with a thick and creamy mocha head. The aroma features plenty of allspice, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, orange zest, caramel maltiness, and touches of zesty citrus way off in the background. Medium to full-bodied on the way down. A remarkable taste of fresh gingersnap cookies! Caramel maltiness upfront taste-wise. Molasses. Plenty of cloves and cinnamon follow. Kinda roasty. Touches of chocolate and smoke. The alcohol is well-hidden.

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