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RATINGS: 623   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.91/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 300   ABV: 10%
Stone 10th Anniversary IPA harkens back to our earlier Anniversary Ales, with abundant hopping at many stages of the brewing process. Appropriately, the aroma is over-the-top, with pronounced piney and resiny hop flavors combined with tropical fruit esters and more subtle notes of toasted malts and alcohol. Our Stone 10th Anniversary Ale weighs in at 10% alcohol by volume (perfect for a 10th anniversary beer), and has a little more color and malt character than our other IPAs. In addition to using the new Summit hop variety in the brewhouse to provide the powerful bitterness, we went back through our records and found some of our favorite hops over the years, and used them to flavor this brew, including Chinook, Crystal, and large doses of Simcoe in the dry-hop to provide a huge, complex, piney, fruity and floral hop character. This is a colossal beer, big in every sense: hoppy, malty, rich, and strong! Right up our alley.

Re-releaase as part of the 20th anniversary encore series in 2016

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   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 13/20
Silphium (3192) - East Lansing, Michigan, USA - SEP 12, 2006
Bottle thanks to mjames. Clear amber to light copper body, thick buff head. Aroma is classic Stone, which made me quickly realize how long its been since I last opened one of their beers. Big, bright, bitter grapefruity hops in addition to pine cones paired with sweet caramely, toasty malts, sugary, with potent alcohol presence. The flavor was a big let-down, though, a brew of grapefruit, pine, and tropical fruits overwhelming the simple one-dimensional bready malts. Alcohol is warm and prickly. The hops and alcohol effectively annihilate the palate. This is hopped-up firewater; even when the hops age and fade away, there isnt any malt depth to carry this beer, so I guess its best consumed now. Disappointing offering from Stone. Routine or even mundane is sometimes acceptable, but this pales in comparison to similar beers the brewery already produces. A creative streak is due.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
TheBeerGod (6066) - Newport News, Virginia, USA - SEP 12, 2006
Bottle. Pours a gorgeous copper with sturdy manilla foam bunched up around the left side of the glass. Nose is extremely piney and resinous. Lots of evergreen notes, strong grapefruit, tangerine and pineapple. The alcohol also comes through and feels a bit intrusive at times. The liquid itself coats the palate with slick oily hops, astrigent citric acids, and sticky pine sap. Lingering bitterness throughout. The fruits blend well with the pine while malts flounder in the background. Ends with even more hop notes, pine sap, soft maple notes, citrus fruits, alcohol, pineapple and almost some earthy notes. This is a big beer and rather delicious!

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 2/10   PALATE 1/5   OVERALL 8/20
redlem (1306) - Ohio, USA - SEP 11, 2006
UPDATED: SEP 25, 2006 Plastic. Reminds me of the 2-Bros Hop Juice. Initial aroma was good with some amarillo stickiness, but this lasted only the first sniff after that ...plastic. Trying to get through a glass is tough. Light bodied beer, strong hop prescence but becomes overpowering with plastic overtones. Not a favorite of mine.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
MrBunn (2750) - The Wet Side of a Dry Town, Pennsylvania, USA - SEP 11, 2006
Bomber bottle. Beautiful orangish pour with a two finger tall head. Aromas are a wonderfully rich mixture of pineapple, grapefruit and pine, but pineapple really dominates here. Flavor is fairly sweet... pineapple and caramel malts are the main event, with some resiny pine hops that are an interlude before it shifts back into a sticky sweet finish. Not at all what I was expecting... I was expecting a more typical over-hopped, over-alcoholic beer, but probably should have expected better of Stone. The alcohol is burried nicely and not very detectable... the warmth is there, but the rubbing alcohol flavoring certainly isnt. (As it is warming the alcohol comes through a little stronger in the taste, but I still find myself enjoying it immensely.) I bought a spare and will revisit this one in a year or so...

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
JohnnyJ (5449) - San Diego, California, USA - SEP 11, 2006
UPDATED: FEB 16, 2007 Sweet caramel and piney hops aroma. Red amber pour with an off-white, caramel colored head. Very intense flavor of hops, sweet malt, caramel, dark fruit (almost tropical), grapfruit hoppy finish with a bit of alcohol. Stomach warming with a medium to thick mouthfeel. Reminds me of a very hoppy barley wine. Nicely done.

   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
fordest (2470) - Santee/San Diego, California, USA - SEP 11, 2006
Lots of fruity apricot and citrus aromas coming off this golden orange pour. Head very nice off white lasting for a long time leaving beautiful lacing. Lots of sweet malt in the flavor with stong grapefruit and bitter hops on the finish. Alcohol flavor in the aftertaste with some mild heat. Pretty darn good.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
OldMrCrow (2418) - Seattle, Washington, USA - SEP 10, 2006
UPDATED: OCT 25, 2007 Fresh bottle.

Pours a rich orange amber with a nice foamy tan head. The aroma is a blast of pine-and-citrus hops, extremely powerful in that regard with almost cleaning-fluid intensity (including a definite alcohol burn even on the aroma), some other fruit notes of pear and mango. The flavor is an intense coupling of sweet malt and citric hops; this could almost pass for a hoppy barleywine. The palate is smooth and enjoyably rich in texture but this beer is very hot, ridiculously hot, to the point that one keeps it off the upper back palate simply to keep the alcohol away from the nasal passages.

I know Im going against the grain here, but Im really disappointed in this one. Its not terrible, but its not particularly good, either. While it improves as it nears room temperature, its just one intense flavor, a very powerful citric pine-resin hoppiness backed by sweet thick malts. If you told me this was the latest Imperial Whatever from Lagunitas, Id have believed it easily (and thats no complement from me, I find their strong beers mostly overly sweet and unsubtle in exactly the hop flavors that dominate here.)

Im feeling like a bit of an idiot for buying five bottles of this on word of mouth and generally good impressions of the previous hop-heavy offerings from Stone. I certainly hope it mellows with time.

(Note added two days later: to its credit, the beer seems to have improved after a couple of days open, or perhaps my attitude improved over the last couple of days. Its not great still, but I can find its virtues now.)

Bottle, one year old

Today some friends and I drank one of these side by side with a Stone 11th. The hope was that this one would have improved with age and thus would give the very nice Stone 11th some competition, but if anything its gotten worse. Even more barleywine character as expected, but not in a particularly good way. Its getting oxidized, presents a cheesy stale-hop aroma, way too sweet, still very hot...we very rarely leave a bottle unfinished and this had 1/4 left at the end of the day. It would have gone potentially as low as 6/3/5/3/10=2.7.

What on earth am I going to do with the remaining bottles in my cellar?

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 10/20
SpudClampDawg (1029) - Jasper, Indiana, USA - SEP 10, 2006
UPDATED: OCT 29, 2006 Ive had two bottles of this and the second made me drop my score considerably. I think at first I was caught up in the - "OMG its Stones 10 Anniversary Beer!" hype. When it comes down to it, there is just no real hop definition in this. The malts are muddled too. The nose is a little more subdued than I expected from such a big beer. Still nice, the aroma is full of mango and apricots, grapefruit and candied oranges. Lots of sugar too. A hint of earthy yeast and ethanol lingers beneath. The body is nicely bittered - the IBUs are kept in check and are nowhere near tongue scraping. This is a good thing in my book as it allows me to taste everything else in the body equally. As the intial bitterness subsides, a nice combination of sweet malt and citrusy hops come through. The malts are extremely sluggish near the finish though, weighing on the tongue. As I drink more and more of the bottle, the weight of the hops and malts just pull me down. It becomes a cloying mess - like pineapple and caramel syrup. Really hard to finish 22 oz. This lacks definition and finesse.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 13/20
vyvvy (5976) - Florissant, Missouri, USA - SEP 10, 2006
First the good - nice bottle design and nice aroma. After that this thing is an overrated trainwreck of a beer. It pour clear copper with a good sized beige head. On the aroma I was getting lots of floral simcoe hops that had me excited to taste the beer... the taste didnt live up to expectations. Medium to full body that is cloying and sticky with some semi-soft carbonation. Taste starts off with cotton candy like sweetness and a ton of alcohol. This says it is 10% and it doesnt mask any of it - I would have guessed it was much more due to the horrible burn this has. My favorite beers are IIPAs, BSAs and ASAs and I dont think Ive had more burn on a beer than this one. The finish has some spicy hops (first time I noticed any) but the alcohol is the most dominate aspect. This beer is nothing of what it is cracked up to be. I dont know if ones feel they have to give this a good rating because it is a "Stone anniversary beer", but I cant think of a more overhyped beer ever. I got two bottles and will not be consuming the other one myself. For a brewery that takes such an arrogant stand for being the epitomy of quality this is a hypocritical offering - its far from being yellow and fizzy, but it is also not good.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 2/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
auerbrau (3203) - Ithaca, New York, USA - SEP 10, 2006
22 Oz Bottle. This beer reeks of Balsam Fir, and I love it. There I am under the Christmas Tree a couple days after the event. Drying needles droping their sweet orange resin on to the carpet and Im rolling it it. The vacuum eminates the aroma throughout the room. It couldnt be more festival. This merges into the night I got high and watched the Christmas Tree lights for a couple hours, with the mingling of Fir and Creeper in my mouth. It pours a little flat, to say the least. Has a creamy ivory head and a very even amber orange body. Mmmm. Rich, bready, yeasty, creamy, sweet pine resins, orange peels, lime zest and lemon juice all swirled and concocted over a bed of grassy wild plums. The carbonation is a little shy here, are they learning from AleSmith? The fruity notes dance well with the nostril scorching hops and the ten percent of alcohol is hardly noticeable. Creamyness maybe doesnt hold up as it should and is washed away in a sea of long tall green grasses. Right now, Im just happy to have a beer redolent with hops. There is some discordance in the individuality of each ingredient. This beer actually could use some time in my opinion. Double IPA? Nah, just a whopper of an IPA. Thanks Andy!

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