Stone 10.10.10 Vertical Epic Ale



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RATINGS: 628   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.51/5   EST. CALORIES: 285   ABV: 9.5%
This ninth edition of our Stone Vertical Epic Ale series takes two interesting left turns. A Belgian-style golden triple is the starting point of this beer, but the first left turn is nearly immediate with the addition of dried chamomile flowers, triticale, and Belgian amber candi sugar. The second, and rather unusual left turn takes us half an hour up the road from Stone to Temecula courtesy of the addition of just-pressed Muscat, Gewurztraminer and Sauvignon Blanc grapes from our friends at South Coast Winery. As the Stone Vertical Epic Ale series has moved through the calendar, we found that the brewing schedule for a 10.10.10 release coincided nicely with the grape harvest, neatly providing an interesting twist in this epic ale.

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   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
jhumphries69 (1034) - Tyrone, Georgia, USA - OCT 29, 2010
22oz bomber. Pours is orangey gold with medium thin white head and slight cloudiness. Aroma is fragrant with touch of herbs and white grapes but also with subtle leathery quality. Some herbal hops (noble origin I think?). Flavor is malty sweet up front with an interesting fruitiness and hints of Belgian esters. Dry and bitter, but neutral, hop character. Finishes dry and hoppy with a hint of lingering wihte grape fruitiness. Mouthfeel is pleasant, full bodied, with suds to lighten/soften it. Velvety and slippery texture. Overall, delicious.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
LilBeerDoctor (3889) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 28, 2010
Bottle. Pours a hazy orange with a small ring of white head. Aroma of Belgian yeast and lots of spices. Flavor is also heavily spiced, with Belgian yeast and corn malt. Its not a terribly flavorful beer but its decent enough to drink. I didnt get any of the wine/grape flavors as described. Anyway, an ok beer but not something Id be crazy to try again in a couple of years... 7/4/7/4/14 [3.6/5]

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Drake (13525) - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - OCT 28, 2010
Bomber from Whole Foods Market, Charlottesville, VA. Pours a clear orange-amber color with a medium fizzy white head. Fairly poor head retention and lacing. Aroma of caramel, grapes, bread and spicy hops. The taste is white grapes, lightly toasted grainy notes, caramel, faint floral notes and bitter peppery hops in the finish. Medium bodied.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
JCB (3999) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - OCT 27, 2010
Bomber from Sams, Durham. Very handsome pour, a deep burnished gold getting close to the copper end of the spectrum. Crisp carbonation, thinnish head, but that seems appropriate for the style. Digging the nose, which suggests a dry-hopped beer with some substantial candi malts and floral additions. The grapes are faintly present in the nose, and the subtlety is appreciated. Problem is, it tastes like a wreck. Muscat grapes clash mightily with the hops and flowers, rendered dank by the sweet malts. I sincerely hope that ageing does this beer some good, but I wonder.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
ksurkin (1021) - Norfolk, Virginia, USA - OCT 27, 2010
22oz bottle from grape & gourmet. pours a clear, light, gold with a thick, bubbly, white head and light trickles of lace. aroma is very nice with sweet belgian yeast, light spice notes of coriander and lavender, and oakey, white wine notes with hints pf peach and floral esters. flavor is great with the sweet yet slightly tart white grape and oakey wine notes coming through early backed by notes of pear juice, clove, and juicy-fruit gum with a light, dry, grassy note on the finish. palate is medium bodied with spritzy carbonation and a light, dry finish. overall, another tast addition to the vertical epic series.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
rateyourpoison (198) - chicago, Illinois, USA - OCT 27, 2010
Bomber btl. Pours clear darker golden with a thin white head. Lots of carbonation a good triple appearance. Has an aroma of yeast and white grape. Crisp super refreshing mouthfeel. Crisp all the way through with a spicy and mildly dry finish. A subtle floralness that compliments the wine grapes well. A nicely done beer.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
ucusty (2691) - raleigh, North Carolina, USA - OCT 26, 2010
Thanks to OSCF for sharing! Another VE beer that tries to be memorable but isnt. MEh

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 10/20
Ernest (7628) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - OCT 26, 2010
Bottle. Head is initially small, frothy/fizzy, white, mostly diminishing. Body is medium yellow. Aroma is lightly to moderately malty (toasted grain), lightly hoppy (flowers), lightly to moderately yeasty (basement), with a strong note of lavender, other notes of gum, pepper, lemon zest. Flavor is moderately to heavily sweet, moderately acidic, lightly bitter. Finish is lightly sweet, moderately acidic, moderately bitter, slightly unclean. Medium body, watery/syrupy texture, lively carbonation, moderately alcoholic. I have two major gripes with this: first, the addition of flowers is overdone, and second, the fruit juice sourness is unpleasant (as if theres a big squeeze of grapefruit juice in every glass). This is one of those cases where "throwing too much stuff" into the pot ruined the beer. Without the lavender or chamomile or whatever, and presumably without the grape juice, this might have been a pretty decent beer...mentally erasing those aspects is hard to do, but what remains at least ^seems^ like it would have been quite solid. Oh well.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
Hophead22 (2879) - Redlands, by way of Wisconsin,, California, USA - OCT 26, 2010
Tap at Eureka Burger. Rating# 92. Dark gold with a thin white head. Light, sweet fruity aroma, grapes for one thing. Sweet flavor as well. More light fruits, grape juice, pretty good.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
chimplechamp (601) - Oslo, NORWAY - OCT 26, 2010
Not quite the beast I thought it would be,,,, pours like a well oaked chardonnay, some sediment, nose is pears, white peach juice, some malt character coming through, taste is somewhere between a beer and a wine, part of me wishes there was a bit more of that fine grape character showing through although there is a great balance between malty sweet, sour, and bitter. Reminiscent of some belgian trippels, a lot more delicate than any other stone brew Ive tasted and I guess thats why im thrown off guard.

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