NicerInPerson (337) - North of Raleigh, North Carolina, USA - MAR 11, 2007
The aroma was chocolate and strong malt and an estery bit of banana as the head formed. Through the head was chocolate, espresso coffee and and caramel. The beer poured pitch black with a dark brown head which rose slightly, held tightly, and laced the glass. The flavor was chocolate and espresso with caramel, toasted marshmallow, and more of the estery banana character. The chocolate and coffee worked very well together with the dark caramel and biscuity character. The roasted malts and bittering were well balanced with other malt and fruit and neither was overpowering working to hide the 10.8% ABV stated on the label. As the beer warmed a raisin and prune character began to emerge in both the aroma and flavor. The body was full and with a fairly low level of carbonation. The alcohol was really only a factor in the warming that occurred after consumption. A really nice RIS, banana esters when really cold, dark fruits as it warmed, great complexity. 22 ounce bottle. Spring 2006 release. $6.39. EKGoldings (675) - Radford, Virginia, USA - MAR 10, 2007
Bottle from last year’s production. Very complex tastes of roasted malt with fruit esters. Great concentration and mouthfeel. A truly satisfying beer. luv2brew (197) - Chesterfield, Virginia, USA - MAR 9, 2007
Pours a jet black with a medium brown head. Aroma of sweet dark fruit with a hint of coffee. Great burnt taste with a big sweetness of dark fruit. Bitterness is there but it is overshadowed by the massive body that is definately chewy. This is my favorite Stone brew. I put it away for about 6 or 7 months and it was worth the wait! hopslovin (194) - Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA - MAR 4, 2007
Jet Black pour. Medium tan foamy head. Hops aroma, chocolate, coffe taste & finish. Very balanced hop/malt profile. Very Good Beer. Marsiblursi (3083) - Göteborg, SWEDEN - FEB 27, 2007
(Bottle, thanks Pelle) Pours black. Roasted aroma with blackberries and some other berries, liquorice, dark bread and dark malt. Light fruity undertones and hints of coffee. Maybe some tiny, tiny hints of dark chocolate. Roasted heavy salt flavour with some dark fruits, liquorice, dark syrup, dark chocolate and hints of dark bread.. Fantastic smooth mouthfeel. Ligering dark malt afrertaste with a medium bitterness. The alcohol is very well hidden. Very nice aroma but the flavour is fantastic.
Maverick34 (3389) - New York, USA - FEB 25, 2007
Bottle. Pours dark, dark, dark. I mean really dark. Smallish head. Chocolatey aroma with rich flavor. Shockingly, not super heavy, IMO, a very good Imperial Russian. footy (348) - scottsdale, Arizona, USA - FEB 25, 2007
UPDATED: SEP 11, 2007 5/06. Dark brown with brown head. Coffee taste with good bitterness. Side by side with Expedition and Siberian nights. More coffee in the taste. NIcer carbonation and mouthfeel than the expedition. Not as dense and flavorful as the expediton but easier to drink. BDR (2535) - Roseville, Minnesota, USA - FEB 24, 2007
UPDATED: OCT 15, 2010 A brown so dark it’s almost black with a heafty amount of creamy brown head. Coffee chocolate and nutty nose. Chocolate and fig sweetness with the faintest hint of "coffee." Subtle hops and balanced. Thanks to joebrew for sharing the greatest beer of the evening. joebrew (608) - Farewell Minny; Hello Puyallup, Washington, USA - FEB 24, 2007
2005 vintage. Pours about as black as you can get with a nice dark, dark brown head. Nice coffee, chocolate, nutty aroma, as well as some subtle dark fruit. What an explosion of flavor. Nice chocolate, caramel, coffee, walnut type nuttiness, as well as a hint of fig or raisen like concentrated sweetness. A great floral hop balance that is very subtle but manages to carry the finish all the way to the end. This is an unbelievable beer, and I am so glad I have two more of the ’05 or I would be a very sad man. Thanks to footbalm (Eric) for this bottle, you are the man, and you hooked me up with #200! CheesedMan (572) - Saint Cloud, Florida, USA - FEB 24, 2007
Pours with a color as dark as my ex-wife’s heart. Shared with SoLan, along with Hardy’s from ’77 and ’87, more on that later. Roasted coffee aroma, hints of Valrhona chocolate wafting gracefully. Fat and unctuous in the mouth, grand beer.