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RATINGS: 3088   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.18/5   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 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
skaughty (652) - Marietta, Georgia, USA - SEP 4, 2004
No doubt this comes from Stone. Aroma is of black licorice annd huge cascade hops. Flavor is severely out of balance (to be expected). The dryness leaves the tongue slightly charred. I really want to love Stone's beers - I just can't get excited about this one either.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
Sven (229) - Lancaster, California, USA - SEP 1, 2004
Big, thick, strong, heavy beer. Massive burnt flavors of coffee, cocoa, and tar. Huge alcohol presence and burn. Black as pitch.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
ElJefe (553) - Rochester, New York, USA - AUG 30, 2004
UPDATED: MAR 19, 2005 Pours about as black as can be. Completely opaque, with a dark brown head. Sweet anise aroma. Heavy, creamy feel. Nice flavor, coffee, anise and molasses dominate until the bitter finish. The high alcohol is detectable, but not unpleasant. A very good Imperial Stout.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
igneous1 (1530) - Davenport, Iowa, USA - AUG 29, 2004
100% opaque, black, head is light brown, somewhat lasting. aroma is heavy on alcohol and chocolate, raisins too, roastiness is rather mild. flavor has a lactose quality, dark fruits, chocolatiness and roastiness. this beer is delicious, but way too young. must rate on potential.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
1more4dessert (334) - Upstate, New York, USA - AUG 27, 2004
moderately thick and velvety oily mouthfeet, definately has a bourbon like quality, the alcohol which weighs in at a whopping 10.8% is much better masked than some lesser middle weights. Even though this is quite young still, it is astonishingly smooth.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
Dickinsonbeer (5074) - Hoboken, New Jersey, USA - AUG 26, 2004
UPDATED: FEB 20, 2005 Holy Crap this is some good stuff. Poured pitch black with a nice head if poured aggressively. Awesome roasted and chocolate aroma that makes you want to smell it for a long time before even sipping. Flavor was very roasty yet backed up with chocolate and other malty flavors. Some sweetness in the background from crystal malts. Big body and a thick mouthfeel. Nice kick at the end. After one bomber I was feeling pretty drunk and Im a big guy.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
0o9i (439) - Reno, Nevada, USA - AUG 24, 2004
Bottled. I called up the nearest beer store that had access to Stone to see if they could get this and was gladly informed they had a case coming in...I told him my interest, he said heíld buy another case. Iíll be drinking this until next spring. Anyways...pourse a deep brown color, black, BLACK in the glass with a small brown head with excellently flowing stout bubbles as glass tilts, nice lacing and that tiny head lasts fully. Rich, deep aroma of chocolate, nuts, mild coffee, all roasted, alcohol, smells rich, balanced and dry; clean and creamy. Touch of banana once it gets to room temp! Mouth is creamy, thick, lots of soft, soft, soft creamy carbonation lasting until after you swallow(provided that you let the bottle sit before pouring, pour it cold and the carbonation dies!), pleasantly dry, exceptionally dry for something so thick, heavy and malt laden. Flavor is noticably alcoholic, but pleasantly so, provided that you sip it and especially when you consider the rest of the flavors. Also...so rich, complex...firmly roasty, burned, holding you while it feeds you alcohol, chocolate, coffee, oak. I like more of a hidden alcohol presence, not a prominent one, although the warning is nice...even though I donít listen. Terrifically balanced, even though the finish is decidedly bitter(yet not overly so, quite pleasant), the beer is well balanced when you consider everything thatís in it and how powerful this stuff is. Not a big beer, but a tremendous one. This 22oz is a meal, dessert and a few beers with your meal! Iím making chile, but meh...this stuff may well suffice. Drinking this stuff is like being challenged to a dual...you think to give up, but the aftertaste is so nice, you like so much, you just keep drinking it--despite some of itís less desirable qualities...basically itís too alcoholic and thatís the only undesirable and related to flavor alone. So warming though...Iíll drink this stuff and laugh at the snow outside.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
Nel (180) - Virginia, USA - AUG 24, 2004
Pours out so black that no light passes through it. Has a very rich smelling aroma that permeates the room as soon as the bottle is opened. Coffee flavor is very apparant and appreciated. Assaults the taste buds with itís robust flavor. I purchased a bottle to try it out and went back the next day for another. I highly recommend this beer.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
MMM...Beer (385) - Las Vegas, Nevada, USA - AUG 22, 2004
The stout of all Imperial. Basically, Stone put in anthing they could that would still let them call this an Imperial Stout. However, the impressive part is that all the ingredients blend so wel together that, as overpowering as Stone claims it to be, it turned out to be a very wam, mellow brew. Still up to Stoneís strength but definitely one that is easy to finish (just my take some time).

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 19/20
5000 (6599) - Hardened Liver, Washington, USA - AUG 22, 2004
Bottle pours black black BLACK. † Abstolutely NO light gets through this one! † Head settles from a medium frothy light brown to a simple trace. † Lacing is rather attractive. † Aroma is of sweet burnt malts, slightly nutty, chocolate (rather sweet too), seemingly somewhat dry or chalky, along with minor hints of rubbing alcohol. † Flavor is forwardly malty, with a dry semi-sweet chocolate kick and a light soy and hop bite. † Full bodied, almost creamy mouthfeel. † This is rather delicious. † While the aroma had alcohol in it, it is not overberaing. † I am rather amazed as to how easy, and dangerous, this is to drink. † Slightly dry on the finish, with a slight hint of alcohol. † Probably one of the best Imperial Stouts I have ever had! † HIGHLY recommended.

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