Terminus (3683) - St. Louis, Missouri, USA - SEP 13, 2006
bottle-man o man, now this could be the biggest dissapointment of the year for me. 06 has been great, but i was definately looking forward to stone 10 this year. With all the hype, they decided to take the easy route and do ANOTHER ipa (how boring is that?). clear oragne with a small whispy white head with some very beautiful carbonation. I will admit this one looked like a killer. nose was somewhat dissapointing-fussel, lots of sugary malt but where are the hops? they seem muddled and subdued. oh man the flavors are terrible! fussel sweet bombardment of under-atenuated mess. this went bad from sip 1. I even let it warm up to room temp-never got any better. the finish has hints of resinous hops (the chinook), but the others are nowhere to be found. surupy and thick palate that was cloying and disgusting. finish was overly sweet with lingering earthy tones, but not enough to dry out all this sweetness. more a bad barleywine than a IIPA. Even at this young age, the beer seemed oxidized. maybe they bottled this one way before they released it like they did with the 9. i dunno. All i know is that stone did a bad thing by letting lee chase leave the brewery. WTF!!!! Ratman197 (14822) - Arvada, Colorado, USA - SEP 13, 2006
Bomber pourede a clesr coppeer with a lasting amber head. Aromas of earthiness, carmel, pine, grassiness and some herbal notes. Palate was medium bodied and smooth. Flavors of carmel, pepper, sweet malt, hint of pine and light orange with a warming lingering bitter finish. Alcohol was very obvious. Much, much better than Ruination. Numenor (871) - Richmond, Virginia, USA - SEP 13, 2006
A ruby-brown body with a thin white head that diminishes very quickly. Pineapple, maple, apple, massive hops and light malts dominate the aroma. Great taste and frankly huge hoppy accents, sweet fruits with some nice malts to balance the initial taste. Ending is pure hops, very little of anything else survives. Hop Heads, this is the beer for you... just make sure to save a case for me. *evil grin* Silphium (3199) - Traverse City, 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 it’s 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 isn’t any malt depth to carry this beer, so I guess it’s 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. TheBeerGod (6216) - 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!
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. MrBunn (2826) - 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 isn’t. (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... JohnnyJ (5562) - 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. 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. OldMrCrow (2437) - 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 I’m going against the grain here, but I’m really disappointed in this one. It’s not terrible, but it’s not particularly good, either. While it improves as it nears room temperature, it’s 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, I’d have believed it easily (and that’s no complement from me, I find their strong beers mostly overly sweet and unsubtle in exactly the hop flavors that dominate here.)
I’m 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. It’s 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 it’s gotten worse. Even more barleywine character as expected, but not in a particularly good way. It’s 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?