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Stone 15th Anniversary Escondidian Imperial Black IPA

 (RETIRED)
overall
99
100
style
Serve in Shaker, Tulip

bottled
available

on tap
available

Regional Distribution

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RATINGS: 709   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.89   EST. CALORIES: 324   ABV: 10.8%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
In the 15 years since we entered the craft brewing world, change has come not in a straight line, but as an exponential curve. The craft brewing movement has long been called a "revolution." But today the air is so thick with revolution, it’s palpable. No longer is it only an awareness among the faithful; the unconverted are beginning to feel it as well. Denial and ignorance are disappearing in favor of opened eyes, curiosity and the sense that there’s something larger out there. For far too long we have been lied to. For far too long we have been oppressed by the notion that dumbed-down-lowest-common-denominator-mediocrity was all that we could, and should, expect. You might think we’re talking only about the world of brewing, but we’re not. There is a myriad of products out there masquerading as cheeses, coffee, chocolates, breads...hell, there is stuff pretending to be ’food’ that our great grandmothers would not recognize as such. Yet the craft brewing movement, together with the artisanal food movement, is making much progress. Where the industrial companies can’t dismiss or bury us, they are attempting to copy us with cheap facsimiles. Yes, chances are if you are holding this bottle, you understand these things to be true about the world of brewing. You also likely understand the importance of our fight at Stone against accepted ’norms’ over the last 15 years. We believed that America was ready to embrace things made with artistry and passion. You have spoken. Your response has been clear. We are not merely consumers to be spoon-fed whatever commodities need to be unloaded for a profit. We have only just begun to move the needle of this revolution, & mediocrity still reigns. Consider that when you reject dumbed down, industrialized food and drink, you also support craft brewing. The line is nearly seamless; we are fighting the same battle. We will not win in our lifetime, as the powers are too entrenched, and the masses too…fooled. And shackled. However, this is a revolution of ideas and of taste, and we will win. How do you want to be viewed by your children, and your children’s children? As a hero, or as the oppressed? (Those that don’t think they have been oppressed are already lost.) Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide. We hope you’ll stand with us. Strong and unyielding. You are needed. This bottle and its glorious contents are a celebration of you, brothers and sisters, and your importance in this fight. Cheers to all we’ve accomplished together in the past fifteen years, and cheers to the adventure ahead!


3.2
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Strykzone (5380) - Wood River, Illinois, USA - AUG 31, 2011
Sampled at an esbls tadting. Black pour! Smallish tan head. Cocoa aroma is subtle. Chocolate flavor, onions (!), espresso, This is almost very very good but it falls short because of the hop selection.

3.2
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
Beaver (1420) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - SEP 6, 2011
22oz bottle. Pours a dark brown black with a frothy creamy brown head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is roasted malts with piney hops and a little fruit.

The flavor is a some sweet fruity malt followed by a big roast bitterness with a lot of char in the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied.

Overall, pretty similar to other black IPAs that just don’t do it for me. Too much roast and char bitterness rather than hop flavors. There is some sweetness and a little fruit and pine, but it just doesn’t seem to go well with the roasted char.

3.2
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 13/20
obguthr (4425) - Staunton, Virginia, USA - SEP 23, 2011
Grapefruit and pine nose, light soy sauce component. Clear dark bronze, thin yellow head. Malt forward, char and licorice, sweet orange, finishes with bitter pine. a little boozy. I’m a huge fan of SSSRA, but this is hot and disjointed by comparison.

3.2
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
RyanMM (413) - Ferndale, Michigan, USA - SEP 25, 2011
Pours, well, black. Opaque in appearance in my tulip, with a massive brown head that recedes quite slowly. Aroma presents a lot of chocolate notes in addition to grassy and moderately citrus hops. Immensely flavorful palate. Roast, chocolate, a bit of coffee, followed by an immense wallop of hop notes and bittering that lingers extensively. Despite the color, this is still an IPA, and it tilts way towards the hop site of the balance equation. It’s unfortunately too bitter for the amount of malt body and sweetness for my tastebuds. It’s a really well-crafted beer, but not one to my liking.

3.2
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
JCB (3999) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - OCT 14, 2011
Bomber from Sam’s, Durham. Big oily pour is not really what I’d expected from something with "IPA" in its handle. Super potent nose hangs there like a fog. Body is a bit too heavy and slick, and the overall character of the brew is starting to seem consistent. In terms of flavors, the hops get more or less lost in the smoked meat and char and molasses (not to mention hints of anise), making this brew more like Labyrinth black ale than a black IPA to me. So stylistic kvelling aside, is it a’ight? Yeah but unlike previous Stone anny ales, I won’t be looking to stock up. (Come back Emperial IPA!)

3.2
   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Zymurgeist2 (1234) - Redwood City, California, USA - NOV 23, 2011
On tap at rose and crown. Muted roast on the nose. Not what I am used to from Stone, and not what I remember when having this previously....bad lines? Black with reddish brown highlights and brown head that fades too quickly. Hops are more apparent in flavor, with some flora. Also lots of roast from the double black. Good - but not on par with other Stone offerings.

3.2
   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
SirLimpsalot (2553) - SWEDEN - DEC 15, 2011
Mörk "tåbira"-doft, spritig, stor smak av lakrits och bränd malt. Tung men tydlig humlig i eftersmaken. God men lite obalanserad

3.2
   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 13/20
cmc619 (499) - California, USA - JAN 24, 2012
From bomber into Green Man snifter. Pours as black as the name implies. Medium brown head that settles down pretty quickly, but leaves a dark, intermittent lag-lacing upon swirling. Aroma is some chocolate, some nail polish remover (alcohol). Some really beautiful whiskey (bourbon) flavor hits in the middle, although it is a pretty hot beer. Hops aren’t overwhelming; more like a match for this giant beer. On second sip, I think the hops may just be intertwined with the alcohol and contribute to a sense of greater heat. The bitterness is definitely felt in the finish. Overall, another (expectedly) bold entry from Stone, but I’ll take their core beers over this one, any time.

3.2
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Papsoe (25074) - Frederiksberg, DENMARK - JUN 16, 2012
Bottle 65. Courtesy of joergen. Pours pitch black with a beige head. Rather bad, intense greasy hop aroma with a licorice touch. Rich body, heavy licorice, a very herbal and medicinal hop character. Dark charcoal roast. Seems unbalanced to me in both malt and hop character. 160612

3.2
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 14/20
RexTalionis (2963) - FINLAND - OCT 5, 2012
Bottled. Poured dark brown in colour with a small tan head. Chocolate, coffee, malt and some floral notes in aroma. Coffee and dark fruit in flavour. Roasted malts in aftertaste.


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