rader58 (869) - Leawood, Kansas, USA - FEB 14, 2013
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
sample at Waldo Pizza. Pours jet black with brown head. Aroma of spicy, chocolate, nutmeg, clove, dried cherry, cinnamon. Flavor is clove, roasty, peat, port wine. Quite Spicy.
greenhorn1 (850) - Mission Viejo, California, USA - FEB 15, 2013
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle. Holy spice bomb....seriously...spice bomb. Pours a thick black tar with a sticky brown head. Not sure how I feel about this, tons of flavor such as cloves, nutmeg, pumpkin, cinnamon, etc. Nice belly burn. Sort of a nice holiday or fall beer. Still good, but not really into spices in my brew.
furthur (849) - Eagle River, Alaska, USA - FEB 21, 2016
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Finally getting to this, ’cause, well, it’s a Belgian, isn’t it? Bottle, black beer, head the color of espresso crema. Aroma toasted malt, cloves, banana, dark fruit. Taste is banana and cloves, coffee, raisins, molasses. Palate smooth and rich, carbonation moderate. This is a bit like a Belgian stout.
Darwenus (844) - Virginia, USA - JAN 5, 2013
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours deep brown, like a porter, with a foamy, tan head. The aroma is spices and sweet vanilla, and the flavor is really big. Strong holiday type spices and fruit and ginger, there’s a fruitcake like quality and a finish with strong cloves and cinnamon. Another outstanding Stone beer.
PhatB420 (837) - Pittsfield, Massachusetts, USA - FEB 8, 2013
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
22oz bomber into a 16.9oz stemmed belgian glass while super storm Nemo wrecks the east coast. Pours a stout dark black, likeness to mild tar and pleasant carcoal. Thick and foamy medium head the covers the liquid nicely and then separates and glisens around the top. Taste is tart cherry, cinnamon, fig pie, dark cherry candies/dinner mints, and sugared peppermint.. Outstanding in the depths that the flavours mesh together while masking the abv wonderfully. My first take on the vertical series, its unfortunate I missed out on the rest. Pepper hits the noes constantly as this one goes down as well. Full bodied, with a dry begining countered by a balanced spice attack. Fulfilling, genuine, and tasty. Glad I picked this one up.
ThisWangsChung (836) - Leonardtown, Maryland, USA - SEP 17, 2013
2.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
I’ve never reviewed one of these VE ales before, so as luck would have it, my good friend picked up a bottle and agreed to share it with me. Portion of a 22 oz bottle into a Duvel tulip. From two day old notes.
A: Pours a very dark brown color. The head is a creamy one-finger khaki shade. The general appearance is almost stout-like.
S: Stone really didn’t dick around with the spices, did they? There is insane cinnamon, ginger, clove, and nutmeg on the nose. The eye-watering spiciness evokes Harpoon’s (overspiced) Winter Warmer in a way. Still, I’d love more of the base beer to come through.
T: The aroma didn’t deceive me, this is spiced to fuck and back. It opens with a heavy-handed explosion of cinnamon, ginger, clove, and nutmeg. After a while, it fades into a long dark fruit finish (plums, mainly). Touches of roasted nuts also appear. Complexity is good, but unfortunately it’s complex in a messy, imbalanced way.
M: This one has a pretty thick body. A shame it had to follow the devastatingly drinkable La Terrible, because this one just seemed indolent and flabby in comparison. Still, alcohol is decently concealed.
O: This brew is meh not because it’s boring and lacking pizzazz, but because it’s pizzazz is haphazard and unfocused. That, and Christmas in July kind of sucks.
HughConway (830) - Washington, USA - DEC 26, 2012
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bomber bottle. Pours dark black, thick tan head. Aroma of allspice and nutmeg and cloves, taste is spice and finish is spicy. Tasty beer.
ADfan (826) - Orange County, California, USA - DEC 23, 2012
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Dark brown color in the glass with a small head. Aroma of spices and nutmeg and a slight alcohol smell comes from the glass. Taste does have a wallop of spices just like the description. Nutmeg, corriander, pumpkin and a variety of taste hits you and lingers for a long finish.
RickTStiles (826) - Houston, Texas, USA - OCT 27, 2013
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours black with a thick lasting brown head with plenty of lacing. Huge bready sweet aroma. Creamy mouthfeel. Taste is pumpkin, citrus, nuts and bananas. Finish is Light but rich.
kdm1984 (814) - Missouri, USA - JAN 13, 2013
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours dark with very sizable head and ample lacing that last for a decent amount of time. Aroma: cinnamon, cayenne, clove, orange peel, Hot Tamales candy. Very spicy and hot for sure, especially for the first few minutes. Mellows somewhat as it sits in the glass, becoming more malty and fruity. Taste - similarly spicy with dark roasty chocolate character in the background and finish. Very dry, as advertised. Certainly more interesting than last year’s Epic. This is quite unlike any other beer I’ve tried, and I mean that in a mostly good way.