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Stone 14th Anniversary Emperial IPA

 (RETIRED)
overall
99
94
style
Serve in Shaker, Snifter

bottled
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on tap
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RATINGS: 721   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.77   SEASONAL: Special   IBU: 100   EST. CALORIES: 267   ABV: 8.9%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
We went to England this past spring as self-styled “IPA Hunters” on a mission to learn more about the confusing and often contradictory history of India Pale Ale – to look for some certainty where those before us have found mostly mystery and mercantilism. While our success in this pursuit is open to debate, there can be no question that we returned home inspired by the ghosts of Burton and by the experience of poring over 150-year old brewer’s logs handwritten in (India?) ink. Stone Brewing Co., after all, traces its lineage back to the British Empire’s brewing history: we make ales, and all of our original offerings used traditional British styles as a jumping-off point. If this seems a roundabout way of letting you know that, yes, we are in fact brewing another IPA to mark our Anniversary, well, so be it.

This one however, promises to be different! From the imported white malt to the “Burtonised” water to the rare yeast strain to the most pungent hops Kent has to offer, we used all British ingredients to brew our “Emperial” IPA.* While we may have brewed Stone 14th Anniversary Emperial IPA with our own distinctively modern, San Diego-style touch, what good is history if you can’t rewrite it to suit your tastes?

In this case, our tastes called for highly intemperate quantities of Target, East Kent Goldings, and Boadicea hops, bestowing upon this dry-bodied ale a powerfully spicy, earthy aroma. On the palate, peppery hops assert themselves early and often, with malt sweetness making a brief appearance before being beaten back by a long, complex, and decisively bitter finish. What better way to contemplate the fate of empires past, present, and future?

*Um, except for our filtered Colorado River water, of course.


4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
barak316 (107) - Elyria, Ohio, USA - JUL 3, 2010
Pours a semi hazy orange with a cream head. Smells a citrusy pine aroma. Big bitter pine and citrus taste with a caramel sweet backing. Lingers on the tongue forever. Great beer.

3.6
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
kidrobot (103) - Port Charlotte, New Jersey, USA - SEP 19, 2010
This gets points for being different. It pours a surprisingly pale yellow color with a thick white head. The aroma is grapes, fruit punch, and grapefruit. The flavor is very earthy and bitter with a strong grainy malt presence. Fruit punch with a touch of tropical fruit and earth in the finish. A bit phenolic.

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
boccefloyd (101) - Bon Air, Virginia, USA - DEC 19, 2010
pours a cloudy straw yellow with a small white head that hangs and laces nicely. On the nose it’s like walking through an xmas tree lot, evergreen every where, along with some citrus, oranges, tangerine, and floral. Medium body, plenty of carbonation and bitterness, drying finish. Tastes of pungent hops, at times it’s like drinking an evergreen but in a good way, eary, spice and citrus hops follow, all over a sweet malt backbone.

4.3
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
iNBe (100) - USA - JUL 25, 2010
I think I am coming to love "Empirial" IPA’s. I have had several and they have all been good. This one was no exception.

3.3
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
T3llLAllDE (100) - USA - JUL 28, 2010
very different then most stones ive had. thin on the palate lite hop flavor is over powered by grass and earth and lite grapefruit tart flavor. in the end not much hops. very different then ipas that i usually drink but very interesting

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
hoptimist (99) - Portland, Oregon, USA - JUL 6, 2010
UPDATED: AUG 23, 2010 Smells like another winner from Stone! Hop-forward nose with big grapefruit presence and some resiny notes as well and just a touch of malty goodness to balance. Pours a beautiful light gold and almost peachy color. Slightly hazy with barely off-white persistent head. Medium-low carbonation. Nice lacing. Taste is big bitterness like the nose on the attack, a little malt sweetness creeping in the middle and a long bitter finish. Pretty much just like the commercial description. Medium body with a creamy/sticky texture. Medium carbonation and a wonderfully long bitter and dry finish. Great beer. Plan on stocking up on a few of these (me AND you!).

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
swenocha (81) - Franklin, Tennessee, USA - JUL 28, 2010
Golden pour with a very small white head. Aroma is of earthy hops, with a bit of floral and malt. Very bitter (in a good way), balanced piney and citrus hops, as well as caramel malt. Very good... Nicely done.

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
hoppyhampy (73) - , California, USA - AUG 3, 2010
22 oz. bottle poured into a tulip. No freshness info. Kind of odd seeing how they recommend you drink it fresh. Nice, frothy two inches of head forms over a cloudy yellow liquid that reminds me of watered down orange juice. Good lacing evident as the head slowly dissipates. Smell is surprisingly sweet. This is a bit of a change for Stone. The malt is up front and the hops form the back bone giving it a very floral quality almost like a triple. The amount of carbonation you can see looks kind of like a triple, too. The hops are there and still seem fresh. It’s not like the beer is old and the malt has taken over, its just the hops are very subdued on the nose. Good amount of carbonation (not too much) and a very resiny mouthfeel. This definitely coats your whole mouth with a hefty dose of IBUs. Still the hops don’t quite dominate the taste. The yeast and malt combine with the hops to give the beer a citrus-y, tangy, baked, spicy quality. I guess I would say its like biting into a piece of orange peel in your orange-cranberry scone. Maybe its because I am enjoying something entirely new but I think this beer is remarkably drinkable for 8.9% abv. Again I would compare it to a triple instead of most DIPAs in that regard. I wish I had a nice cigar to go with this. Overall, unique and impressive. I am glad my favorite brewer can still surprise me after all these years.

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
NateBarnett (69) - Augusta, Georgia, USA - NOV 7, 2010
22oz bottle. Pours a cloudy light orange. Smells of oranges, spice, and apricots. Taste is bitter with lively carbonation. Quite good!

3.1
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
MikeyMalts (64) - Davis, California, USA - FEB 22, 2011
22oz btl from Nugget Market. Bought in late summer of 10’, been cold in cellar since. Poured into tulip glass. Pours a nicely yellow tinted haziness, looks close to a Hefe. Good amount of white foam at first but dissipates soon after. Big notes of fruit aromas: pineapple, orange, lemon, perhaps banana also. Lots of carbonation on taste, adds a deliciousness to the beer. Flavors much like the aromas with the accompaniment of bold hops. Smooth on the palate but hop bitterness lingers much too after. Good beer for what it is...glad I tried it to have the bottle (pretty much the main reason why I did), but I wouldn’t really buy again if there was ever going to be a chance to. (Yes, there are also big pieces of yeast sediment at the bottom of the bottle.)


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