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Banks’s / Vasileostrovsky Burov Imperial Russian Stout

Formerly brewed at Banks’s (Marston’s)
Style: Imperial Stout
Wolverhampton, England
Serve in Snifter


on tap


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RATINGS: 32   MEAN: 3.73/5.0   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.65/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 195   ABV: 6.5%
Cask; Special. Brewed for the Wetherspoon Spring Ale Festival 2012.
Evgeny Tolstov, from Vasileostrovsky Brewery, is our first visiting brewer from Russia and has travelled to Banks’s Brewery, in the West Midlands, to brew this beer especially for this Wetherspoon real-ale festival. Traditionally, this style of beer was brewed in Britain for export to Russia, so we thought it most apt to ask a Russian to come over here to brew this one for us. This version is at a lower strength than is usual for this style, but still maintains all of the expected characteristics: black in colour, with a rich, enticing aroma and a complex flavour, with a strident hop bitterness balancing the deep malt character.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
worldbeertaste (1796) - West Midlands, ENGLAND - MAR 30, 2012
Solid black with a thick tan lasting head. Deep chocolate roasted malt. Some flowery elements. Full creamy body. Rich taste of chocolate, roast malt with a full creamy sweetness. Just keeps me coming back. Light berry elements. Amazing

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
Benjii (3049) - Edinburgh, SCOTLAND - MAR 15, 2012
On cask at the Foot of the Walk for the Wetherspoons beer festival. A black beer with a thick, light tan head. Aroma of chocolate, caramel and roasty malt. Similar flavours with a lovely roasty malt linger. Alcohol is perfectly balanced with moderate carbonation and just a little dry to finish. Superb!

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
wheresthepath (2139) - Buckinghamshire, ENGLAND - MAR 29, 2012
[Cask at the Hope Tap, Reading] Black with a moderate tan head and a slight fizz. Like all the beers I had in this ’Spoons today, it was in unusually superb condition. The initial impression is of richness, with red wine notes. There’s a little underlying sweet coffee and plum, and then a growing smokiness as you drink more. It’s relaxing and mellow, whilst managing to be both complex and easy drinking. There’s a slight dryness in the lingering smoky finish, but this doesn’t detract from the sumptuous feeling of the beer. I would be astonished if this isn’t the best beer of the festival - it’s a superb stout (I’m not sure it’s an "imperial" one though!). Once again Banks seem to have pulled out all the stops for a Wetherspoons international guest - one wonders why they can’t do this for their own beers?! c10

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
cgarvieuk (21899) - Edinburgh, SCOTLAND - MAR 19, 2012
cask at White Lady ... deep black ... thin tan head .. soft mellow chocolalte coffee roast niose ... light roast ... caramel ... little licorice ... ligth bitter orast .. light pine soapyness ... ok but not stunning 3.7 cask at standing order ... deep black ... thin tan head ... mellow chocolate ... soft roast nose ... meaty chocolate ... smooth roast ... dark mellow chocolate ... rich mellow roast .... hint of coffee ...4.1

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
fairwater (146) - Reading, Berkshire, ENGLAND - MAR 23, 2012
JDW beer festival : hop and malt nose. Dark black. Quite hoppy and bitter for a stout. Doesn’t taste as strong as it is.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Stuu666 (10878) - Edinburgh, SCOTLAND - MAR 11, 2015
Cask at the White Lady. Pours black, nose is roasted malts, chocolate, liquorice, taste is similar, rich, dry.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
reidyboy (13) - Shrewsbury, Shropshire, ENGLAND - MAR 16, 2012
On cask at Montgomery’s Tower in Shrewsbury, part of the JDW Real Ale Festival. Was extremely happy to see it available: it was presented well, deep black with an off white head. Full (roasted and fruity?) aroma and a rich taste, with possibly chocolate or perhaps treacle undertones - not overbearing and a very nice pint

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Beese (2570) - Watford, Hertfordshire, ENGLAND - DEC 11, 2014
Cask at The Gig House (JDW), Wokingham on 7 Apr 2012. Poured black, with a dense tan head. Aroma of roasted malt, earth, mahogany and leather. Dark chocolate in the flavour, with treacle and big dark malt. Smooth mouthfeel. Finish was burnt malt, coffee and molasses.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
markas101 (2308) - Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA - MAR 19, 2012
Cask, The Francis Newton, Sheffield. Deep mahogany, dark tan head. Burnt caramel and cocoa aroma. Milky and smooth, mild flavour then a nice building bitterness. More chocolate and resin at the end.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
BlackHaddock (6384) - Shropshire, ENGLAND - APR 7, 2012
Looks grand: Stout black with a biege creamy head on top. Burnt/roasted/toasted malts with no sweetness in the nose and taste: black coffee beans and dark chocolate notes make up the flavours. Not as rich or creamy as it looked: had some depth of body but it wasn’t full enough in my eyes. Decent and interesting: I’d certainly have another if it comes around again.

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