Stone 04.04.04 Vertical Epic Ale



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RATINGS: 532   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.59/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 255   ABV: 8.5%
A new Vertical Epic will be released every year, with the goal being to collect them all and have a Vertical Epic tasting once the final Epic is released on 12/12/12. Each new Stone Vertical Epic Ale will be release one YEAR, one MONTH and one DAY apart. This time around we used some unmalted wheat, just the right touch of Kaffir Lime Leaf, and a really cool Belgian yeast. The result is a bit like a strong Biere de Garde / Saison-esque influenced beer coupled with some aromatic Bavarian Hefeweizen style phenolic banana esters, and a backnote hint of lime from the lime leaf.

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   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
jamrun (137) - Sioux Falls, South Dakota, USA - OCT 13, 2004
wow stong llime yeast aroma, small quicly disolving head, taste lime small maltiness banna apple smooths in the middle finnishes clean good beer expected stonger lime flavour glad it was not enjoyable beer

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
jackamackson (127) - USA - FEB 11, 2005
This one tastes a lot better tahn it looks (imo). Pours hazy orange with a layer of white head. Smells sweet, spicy (nutmeg or cinnamony or something) and malty, taste is similar to the smell, nice and sweet with some cinnamon/clove spice in there. finishes a little bitter. the mouthfeel is a little lacking (thin), but still pretty good.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
SoylentBlack (123) - Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA - APR 29, 2004
It appears these guys can do nothing wrong. Quite a head for a bottled beer. A little sour for my taste, but very good. These comments about aging intrigue me, I may attempt my first.

   AROMA 2/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
IPAndy (120) - minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - JUL 9, 2006
Diacetyl in the aroma and flavor. A bit of citrus lime pops up, but none of the hefe influence claimed on the bottle. Color is as orange as I have ever seen, so it is interesting, but not exactly appealing. No head. Very little carbonation and extremely watery. A tad bit of alcohol in the flavor as well.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
BeanDip (117) - Florida, USA - MAY 30, 2004
Thanks again to matta! Now this is more like it. Beautiful golden color - nice white head. Smells like a cross between a nice Belgian Triple and German Hefe. Banana fruit and spicy nose. Flowery. Smooth texture. Mildly bitter bite on the finish but very enjoyable.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Maxamillion (103) - Glendora, California, USA - MAR 3, 2005
Aroma of peach/bananas. Nice and fruity. Pretty well balanced, something alittle tiny bit off but i cant really pin point it. Lots of peach flavor. Nice and satisfying especially on a warmer day.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
MayorQuimby (100) - Santa Barbara, California, USA - DEC 15, 2004
UPDATED: FEB 4, 2006 Bottle. Nice golden color, white head that laced okay. Limey, fruity, estery aroma, very pleasant and I spent a long time sniffing my glass. Flavor is not something that Id ever expect from Stone, you can really tell that the used unmalted grain in the beer, the lime flavor is a bit overpowering for my taste. Some spices in there too. Lime really comes through in the finish, bottle conditioning makes it very smooth. An interesting beer, I think Id like to let a few bottles age for a year or so, maybe meld the flavors together a bit and see how it turns out.

Update 2/4/06: I recall Greg saying on a vblog that he particularly enjoyed this one around Thanksgiving, so I decided to crack open one of my remaining bottles. The appearance is still a transparent, bright straw golden color. One-finger white head, good lacing. The lime leaf is much more subdued in the aroma, giving rise to the banana-y esters. Not as pungent as I remember. Sweetness registers early on the front of my tongue, then blends into a slightly tart and spicy finish, presumably due to the wheat and the yeast strain. Bitterness doesnt seem particularly pronounced (though I didnt notice much the first time around, either). Balance is outstanding. Bright feeling in the mouth. It leaves a warm, pleasant sensation after each sip, probably the alcohol which is beautifully masked. This is rounding into a delightful brew. I think Im down to a single bottle now, and considering how wonderful it is right now, Im not sure how long Ill hold on. I dont think my bottle can go the distance, so well have to see what I decide to do.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
bierchik (95) - lakewood, California, USA - AUG 27, 2004
interesting brew...hue was golden w/medium-small size head. aroma was fruity, citrusy, and a bit yeasty. taste was some what sweet, in a good way, can taste the banana & some citrusy flavors, this was good, but dont think i would buy this again.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Hopgeek (90) - San Diego, California, USA - OCT 7, 2004
Light golden to copper color and makes a thin off white head. Aroma is rather lighty malted, hoppy and slightly sweet. Banana esters, coriander spice, hints of orange-lemon-lime citrus, nice even hop/malt balance. Has a sweetness to the finish. Body is medium to full and lightly warms the palate. A fine ale.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
black95tt (82) - Doylestown, Ohio, USA - OCT 20, 2006
Spicy aroma with notes of clove and floral hops. Flavor is malty with heavy spice and a somewhat off putting astringency. Slight earthy hops round out the finish Alcohol is noticeable.

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