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RATINGS: 1137   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.87/5   SEASONAL: Series   EST. CALORIES: 276   ABV: 9.2%
Who knew a worldwide hop shortage in 2008 would give rise to such a memorable, delicious beer? When it came time to craft a commemorative offering for our 12th anniversary, we decided to trade in the bitterness of hops for the bitterness of unsweetened chocolate, and paired that with flaked oats. Featuring a thick, rich, roasty mouthfeel and chocolate-heavy flavors and aromas, this onyx-colored, malt-forward beauty became an instant classic that shares space on our liquid trophy case alongside our hop-focused fan favorites. Rebrewed for our 20th Anniversary Encore Series.

Hops: Summit, Willamette, Galena & Ahtanum

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ChazMania (669) - Oceanside, California, USA - JUL 13, 2008
Bomber. Thick and chewy, completely coating my tongue. It has been awhile since I had Stone RIS, and if memory serves me, the RIS is a tad better than this. The chocolate is faint and bitter. I think I anticipated more chocolate flavors. I have 2 more that I will store for awhile and see what changes in the beer.

Learninbeer (669) - Sterling Heights, Michigan, USA - AUG 24, 2008
Pours Black! Aroma is slight coffee, not much chocolate slight hop aroma, smokey. The head is light brown and creamy, mostly diminishing with a little lacing. The initial flavor is bitter chocolate lasting on the back of the tongue, a little alcohol burn in the stomach. The body is medium, the texture creamy. I loved the 11th anniversary and this is right up there, I have a few in the cellar but I’ll be getting more of these to drink now.

dogfishho (669) - Bloomfield, New Jersey, USA - NOV 27, 2012
This is from a while ago... Pours nearly opaque with a bright, light tan head. The aroma is filled with chocolate and caramel. On the palate, the chocolate and toffee also show the characteristic slickness of an oatmeal stout. The abv is extremely well hidden. Great stuff!

electrotype (664) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - AUG 19, 2016
Un stout assez rapeux et aux notes de bois. Il y a trace de noix, de chocolat noir non sucré et de houblons amères non fruités. C’est agréable à boire, l’alcool est bien intégré, mais c’est quand même assez intense pour un début d’après-midi d’été de congé! Pas un coup de coeur, mais une bière que je boierais à nouveau si l’occasion se présente.

mike mcneil (660) - St Augustine, Florida, USA - JAN 17, 2009
Pours out of the bomber indigo black beneath a thick and creamy dark tan head. Admirable retention with some thin curtains of lacing adhering to the snifter. Rich aromas of dark chocolate, charred wood, caramel, espresso beans and vanilla greet the nose. Palate is quite full and slick (where the oatmeal additions contribute) making this Impy Stout even more enjoyable and authentic. Restrained carbonation adds to the mouthfeels creaminess. Flavor profile was also assertive with upfront notes of semi-sweet dark chocolate, espresso, licorice, molasses and charred oak. Starts out bittersweet and as with most Stone brews shows off a touch of hop bitterness in the finish along with the warming sensation from the 9.2% abv. A slight Belgian-like yeasty sourness sneaks in and is slightly distracting in the end. Overall however a superb anniversary beer.

Aquilo (659) - Berkeley, California, USA - JUL 26, 2008
I have a feeling that I’m going to love this. Pours pitch black with a small dark brown head. I was hoping for a bigger head, but this is very pretty anyway. Smells incredibly chocolaty. Wonderful, rich dark chocolate. Flavor is rich, dry, and bitter chocolate, just as advertised. Some roasty malts in there as well, and just a touch of fresh hops. Very creamy mouthfeel. I’m a sucker for chocolate, and this beer satisfies.

bdigital (659) - Ft Wayne, Indiana, USA - AUG 7, 2008
Bottle: Viscous, black pour with no head. Nose is complete with notes of dark chocolate malts, dark fruits and alcohol...this definitely needs to sit for at least a year IMO. The mouth feel on this is what I wish their RIS was, thick and chewy...very nice. Ashy flavors hit immediately followed by some dark chocolate, roasted malts and alcohol. The most disappointing part about this was the lack of oat. I was initially pretty geeked about this coming out and I was a bit disappointed.

TheGent (657) - , Massachusetts, USA - SEP 26, 2008
This was sort of a let down to be honest. The appearance was very attractive though. Nice deep dark color with carbination clinging to the pint glass like a plague of flies. The head bubbled up to a tan and purple hue that had the cossistancey of the head on an ice cream soda. The smell was fair with a lot fo raison, dried fruit and dates but a definate alcohol note. The taste was a little surpriseing with a bit to sweet malt and alcohol which left me wondering, "where is the chocolate". Only later did i see that it was all in the finnish and gave a decent dose of bitter sweetness. I guess what kept this from a high rateing was to much alcohol lingering taste and it just became tiresome as a beer after about 8 ounches of it. I stopped being able to even notice the chocolate after taste. nearly became a chore to finnish.

merlin48 (656) - Jenkins, Kentucky, USA - JUL 21, 2008
Bottle pours jet black and opaque. Dark khaki head rises tall and laces well. Aroma is lots of chocolate, a hint of booze, and some dark fruits. Really nice feel on the palate, with prickly carbonation leading into a silky velveteen. The oatmeal at work here. Taste has a dominant bitterness, from dark chocolate, hops, and some dark roasty malts. Dried dark fruits add some sweetness. Oatmeal adds a really fine texture. Still a little boozy, but just fine to drink now. A few months on this one should improve it nicely.

BierMeHoos (650) - Maryland, USA - MAY 12, 2016
Where: Old Line Fine Wine Spirits & Bistro. How: 22 oz bottle. Appearance: Pitch black. The brown head retains well, but eventually settled into a quarter inch cap. Spotty lacing. Aroma: Rich aromas of double chocolate cake. Fudge sauce. Chocolate covered espresso beans. Taste: Tastes of dark bakers cocoa, heavily roasted malts, burnt caramel, oats, molasses, coffee, a semi vegital bitterness, hint of brown sugar and a slight nip of alcohol. Palate: full, smooth, creamy feel with fairly soft carbonation. Overall: Very good, but not a surprise.

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