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RATINGS: 3024   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.18   SEASONAL: Spring   EST. CALORIES: 315   ABV: 10.5%
"Thereís no question that Stone Imperial Stout is revered among enthusiasts," states Stone CEO Greg Koch. "I know, because Iím one of íem and I can hardly wait for it to come out each year!" Some may think that a late Spring release for a special brew of this sort is an odd time for it to come out onto the market. Koch justifies this with the rationalization "What better than a warm time of year to come out with a brew that tastes great as it warms up!" Thatís because "ice cold" is certainly not the appropriate way to serve the beer. Nearly without exception, the darker, richer and more alcoholic a brew is, the warmer the serving temperature should be. The Stone Imperial Stout label describes the brew as being "intensely aromatic (notes of anise, black currants, coffee, roastiness and alcohol) and heavy on the palate...expect this mysterious brew to pour like used motor oil and taste even heavier! Serve at 55 degrees."

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
jzzbassman (1525) - Arlington, Texas, USA - DEC 10, 2005
Thanks to Secret Santa dhlesq for this goodie from my wish list. Poured a dark black with a tan head that faded to an oily ring. Big wonderful aroma of coffee, alcohol, and smoke. Very rich and smooth, with an almost milky essence, very well balanced with the perfect amount of bitterness for a good finish. A truly great Imperial Stout.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
julrey (32) - Austin, Texas, USA - DEC 9, 2005
Bottled Summer 2005 Jesus. They really didnít fuck around with this one, did they? Pours black as the darkest of nights, like the deepest corner of hell during a power outage. Smells like alcohol, molasses, a hint of black licorice, alcohol, maybe some brown sugar, then more alcohol. Mouthfeel is not all that viscous, not too surprising given the amount of alcohol, but the flavors erupt on the taste buds, black coffee, brown sugar, molasses, and of course the alcohol is right up front, all around and dominates the finish. Very similar to the North Coast Old Stock I had a month or two ago. This was obviously intended to be aged at least a year but, this being my first go at this one, I couldnít bring myself to wait. Big mistake: after a couple of normal strength beers and a dopplebock this one really fucked me up but good. I think I ended up consuming three meals the next day before my stomach even started to cooperate with me, and the rest of my senses were similarly out of whack. I canít believe this shit is only available in bombers. The only real knock I have against this thing, actually. You really need someone to share this with unless itís going to be your only beer of the day. I imagine this would rate at least a 4.5 if not a 5 on taste given a little aging, but I have to grade based on what Iíve got in front of me, and fresh off the truck thereís just a bit too much alcohol drowning out the other tastes.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
DrBayern (1139) - Morehead City, North Carolina, USA - DEC 8, 2005
UPDATED: FEB 19, 2006 Early Summer 2005 bottling. I compared this side by side with GD Oak Aged Yeti. Itís a tough job, but someone has to do it. Black as coal without a ray of light penetrating. Big dark brown head that sticks to the side of the glass. Coffee, sweet roasted malt, and just a hint of something floral wafts up from the glass. Wonderfully smooth, rich and creamy. More coffee, dark chocolate, and licorice punctuated by notes of peppery spice and citrus. Pleasant dry finish, not overly bitter or astringent. Makes the oak much more obvious in the Yeti. The two are close, but I give the nod to the Stone for its nearly perfect balance and complexity.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
acertain (249) - Seattle, Washington, USA - DEC 7, 2005
UPDATED: SEP 4, 2007 Iíve had this beer many times and Iíve been holding off rating it. I want to give it an amazing rating, and I wanted to try a bunch of other ones to make sure that I didnít blow the scale. Having now tried a bunch, I have decided that I wonít. This is an amazing beer. It looks amazing; it has complex flavor and aroma and it feels wonderful in the mouth. Most other beers seem hardly worth drinking in comparison. I feel very happy to have a bunch in my closet, but I fear it will not be enough to get me through to next summer when the next batch is released.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
black95tt (82) - Doylestown, Ohio, USA - DEC 6, 2005
This beer is the best bargain in Imperial Stouts. Very dark and rich. Dark brown milky head. Aroma is all about the roastiness.Very roasty flavors with hints of anise and west coast hops. Mouthfeel is very nice. This stout has quite a bitter finish, alcohol is only mildly present. Overall a damn good stout for the money.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 18/20
MrManning (2009) - Hamilton, Ontario, CANADA - DEC 5, 2005
Thanks so much Beerandblues2 for sending this in a secret santa package. Much obliged. Dark opaque black, frothy mocha head. Oily and viscous looking. Milk chocolate dominates the nose, and is then followed by anise, mochachinos, roasted malts, and american hops. Milk chocolate taste, cocoa beans, roasted cofee, and bitter as all get out! Great! Awesome length, sweet roasty hops bitterness finish, but unfortunately, has some chalky astringency. Pretty damn good, just wish it was less dry on the finish. Thanks again Brad! IOU!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
steve23mj (273) - Essexville, Michigan, USA - DEC 3, 2005
Pours black with no head. Nose is sweet and chocolatey. Mild alcohol presence in aroma. Flavor is sticky,vinous and chocolate. Improves as it lasts in the glass. Thick mouthfeel. Bittersweet finish. MMMM... good.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
fatty (363) - Perkiomenville, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 3, 2005
Pours dark black opaque with thin, ringing tan head. Coffee bean, cocoa, choclate aroma. Sweet chocolate, coffee and a hint of bourbon in the flavor. Slightly alcohol warming finish. Creamy body.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
roder60 (1288) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 3, 2005
Pours a thick jet black color with a miniscule amount of tan head that rises up from the depths of the beer 10 seconds after pouring, then dissapears quickly after. Aroma is expresso, warm burbony essence, molases, liquorice, and dark bitter chocolate. Absolutely potent as it wafts across the room! Flavor is strong black coffee, bitter dark chocolate, liquorice, and a wiskey undertone. Absolutely delicious. I sipped at this for 1.5 hours and loved every second of it. Great beer.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
MrWalker (926) - Stockholm, SWEDEN - DEC 2, 2005
UPDATED: DEC 5, 2005 Rated 2 Dec 2005. Bottle - vintage 2005. Thanks to ClarkVV for this trade!
Pours black as the night. Aroma not as big as I expected. There are some chocolate in there though. And plenty of it in taste, toghether with a roasted character and a bit of black coffee. This is a THICK brew, akin to cream. The fullbodiest beer Iíve ever had. Aftertaste is nice and full of dark expensive chocolate and somewhat salty. 7/4/7/5/15 3.8

Rated 3 Dec 2005. Bottle - Vintage 2004. Thanks to ClarkVV for this trade!
Aroma has developed a bit, and chocolate is now dominating. Still very fullbodied. In taste the liqourice has taken over and the chocolate has got to fight for it. Still as salty. Alcohol taste has diminshed. 8/4/7/5/16 4.0

Rated 4 Dec 2005. Bottle - Vintage 2003. Thanks to ClarkVV for this trade!
Aroma is now all chocolate and malt. Quite sweet aroma. Taste is more rounded and imediately warming from the alcohol, though the actual alcohol taste is more or less gone, until aftertaste hits you. Still a bit of salt present, but that, and the liqourice, is less than in the other vintages. Itís a beer that clearly wins with maturing. It gets more well balanced, but another two or three years would probably do no harm, quite the opposite. Thereís the odd tickle in the throat, like there is some chilli peppers in the brew. Now, who can send me a case of 2001?

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