SoylentBlack (123) - Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA - SEP 26, 2007
4.3 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Wow. Just wow. I just want to sit and inhale the beer. It smells like it was just brewed today. The flavor and balance are perfect. There’s something different... what is that? Fantastic beer. Buying a case tomorrow.
JB175 (1665) - Bucks County, Pennsylvania, USA - SEP 26, 2007
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Wow - Stone really outdid themselves with this one. You crack the bottle and expect to see gold (even though you know it will be dark) and you see a porterish-looking brew with a tan head. Aroma on this one is very fresh and sweet with citrus and pine. Flavor has some sticky-sweet citrus and pine hops, some roasty-sweet malt and maybe some chocolate in there. Really nice mouthfeel - sticky, but smooth. I’m just hoping to hide some from myself and try it again in 3-6 month intervals. Awesome!
TomDecapolis (4617) - Milton, Delaware, USA - SEP 26, 2007
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours a deep black with ruby highlights when held to the light and a medium to large foamy/creamy tan head that left lacing and sustained. Aroma of citrus, hops, floral notes, caramel, Flavor was up front hops, toffee, some roasted notes, mixed citrus, pine, some grapefruit, chocolate notes and lightly smokey. There is a lot of hops in here and this beer is still fresh. Will be interesting to see how this one plays out after the hops mellow and some of the more roasted character comes out.
Eyedrinkale (3213) - Astoria, New York, USA - SEP 26, 2007
4.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: JAN 16, 2009 On tap at the Hop Devil Grill. Black pour with a sturdy, off white head. The fresh hop aroma gets you right away, piney and citrus. There’s tangerine in the flavor along with a nice smokiness and a perfect use of roasty malts to balance it all out. A nice amount of chocolate is detected towards the end and as it warms. Their best beer since 10.
adrenalinenova (3) - San Diego, California, USA - SEP 26, 2007 does not count
4.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
Wonderful reproduction of the Stone IPA aromas. If you were to do a blind smell you wouldn’t be able to decide which is which. Full of grapefruit, citrus, pine, and slightly floral. The pour is smooth and heavy. Not much head until I swirl the beer and then a tan head and all the aromas burst out. The initial and mid-flavor is 180 degrees from an IPA, smokey, carmel, chocolate with a small malty sweetness. Finally in the aftertaste you taste those wonderful hops you smelled and with their taste the bitterness also takes the field slowly dominating the malty sweetness. Their is a wonderful juxaposition between the hops/aroma and malt/flavor that will be perfect for any fall or winter evening.
wheninhell (488) - chicago, Illinois, USA - SEP 26, 2007
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
black body with dark brown edges. nice big dark tan head that settles into a thin film and eventually disappears. big piney grapefruit aroma with a hint of toffee and a touch of chocolate. bitter piney grapefruit flavor with a hint of toffee and chocolate. very bitter lasting finish with some toffee notes. finish very dry. alcohol present. medium to full body with a somewhat creamy but lively mouth feel. not bad.....just over the top bitter. it needs more balance and subtlety. im gonna have to age a couple of these for a year or two just to see if this stuff gets a little more balanced.
robertjm (791) - Albany, California, USA - SEP 26, 2007
4.4 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
This is VERY dark. Really didn’t expect such a dark color for an IPA, but I guess its a special recipe. Very frothy head. Aroma is of fresh hops. I can see the hops rubbed in my hands like you see Jim Koch do in those Sam Adams commercials! Niocely balanced hops in the flavor, with a bit of sweetness in the background. Body is not very heavy like a stout or porter. Not ultra thin, but just enough there to know you’re not drinking something the consistency of water. Lots of hops in the aftertaste, even minutes are taking the first tastes. This is the only real flaw I could come up with. Wish it didn’t last as long as it did on the tongue. Not sure I’d classify this as a Strong Ale with the amount of bitterness. Could easily call this an IPA instead.
EithCubes (5215) - New Jersey, USA - SEP 25, 2007
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: JUL 6, 2009 (Had back in the day as Stone 11th). Rating no. 1350. Bottle. C-hops and caramel in the nose, lots of grapefruit and pine - delicious! Near-pitch pour with a luscious, lacing, rocky, wiggly, creamy tanned - dark brown head - gorgeous! Very dry (bone dry) hoppy taste, lots and lots of resin with medium bitterness; the overall effect is of smoothness rather than grit, though. Warming in the throat from the alky, but the juice is so well-integrated, it took a while to notice. Makes me smile like a child, big toothy grin. Hops are key here, but caramel is also very strong (this does taste like a lot of other Stone offerings) as does a lesser note of chocolate. Late-coming citrus well blended. Medium body. This is super quaffable, despite the heft; creamy, velvety texture with a very robust taste and a very dry, saliva-inducing aftertaste. Again, this is nothing new from Stone (and I don’t get all the porter nonsense, this is as much a porter as Arrogant Bastard or Ruination), but it is a winner!
Dorwart (2431) - Robbinsville, New Jersey, USA - SEP 25, 2007
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Large frothy malted milk ball colored head of dense bubbles. Thick and sticky lacing. Lovely aroma. Plenty of floral hops but not overly bitter. A great balance with some sweet malts and a hint of milk chocolate. Some tangerine hiding in the back also. Very dark brown in color with a hint of red along the edges. Lots of hops in the flavor. More citrus in nature now with more tangerine. Little bit of roasted malts and some dry chalkyness. Hops become more subdued as the brew warms. Light alcohol presence but not realy noticable. Kind of reminds me of a smoother and lighter Gonzo porter. Finishes bitter but very clean and smooth. A damn fine brew from Stone again!
brstp (201) - Washington DC, USA - SEP 25, 2007
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
On tap at City Beer Store. Pours a dark brown, no head unfortunately. Aroma is a wham bam thank you ma’am floral hops but eventually gets taken over by the caramel and coffee malt. Big hop bitterness with more of the same caramel and coffee cocoa malt. Very clean finish like the lightest citrus IPA, but with the backbone of a strong porter. Awesome.