Serve in Snifter


on tap

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RATINGS: 3124   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.18/5   SEASONAL: Spring   EST. CALORIES: 315   ABV: 10.5%
"There’s no question that Stone Imperial Stout is revered among enthusiasts," states Stone CEO Greg Koch. "I know, because I’m one of ’em and I can hardly wait for it to come out each year!" Some may think that a late Spring release for a special brew of this sort is an odd time for it to come out onto the market. Koch justifies this with the rationalization "What better than a warm time of year to come out with a brew that tastes great as it warms up!" That’s because "ice cold" is certainly not the appropriate way to serve the beer. Nearly without exception, the darker, richer and more alcoholic a brew is, the warmer the serving temperature should be. The Stone Imperial Stout label describes the brew as being "intensely aromatic (notes of anise, black currants, coffee, roastiness and alcohol) and heavy on the palate...expect this mysterious brew to pour like used motor oil and taste even heavier! Serve at 55 degrees."

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hiphoppy (6) - USA - APR 7, 2006 does not count
certainly all its cracked up to be... Pours like used burnt motor oil. Starts of sweet then it hits you. tastes like Coffee, chocolate, prunes then raisins in succession. it leaves a great impression when its all said and done.

ehhdayton (1188) - USA - APR 4, 2006
The nose is struck immediatly with the aromas of chocolate and roasted coffee. Upon a second wiff the hints of plum and currants come through. The pour has the consistency of oil and is a deep rich black with a tan head. Lacing is light. The flavor at first has chocolate and fruit combination. A roasted coffee flavor comes to the forefront quickly and crescendos upon tha palate and through to the finish.

waldowin (6) - Bainbridge Island, Washington, USA - MAR 30, 2006 does not count
From the limited 2004 release, this is one beer I’d really been looking forward to. Pours like motor oil. Thick, black, viscous. Really had to tease a head out of it near the end with the pour, but man, what a head. Dark brown, thick, opaque, and lasting. About 1/2" thick, and just takes forever to fade, leaving *sheets* of foam on the sides. As I drank it down, I could just sit and stare at the blanketing lacing that just smothers the sides. Smells like thick, syrupy dark malts, toasted nuts and raisins. Hints of chocolate, roasted coffee, and cinnamon. Very thick, very subtle. Definitely looking forward to drinking it. This is by far the best tasting stout I’ve ever had, better even than Poseidon or Storm King. Every last bit of it is silky smooth, and complex. Coffee, chocolate, and cherries up front, pushing on to bananas, more chocolate and cherries, and grapefruits, with a wash of oranges and cherries. The cherries flavor carries through the entire experience, just cruising along in the background, helping to accent the roasted and richer flavors. The hops are certainly not dead after 18 months of cellaring, and almost add an edge to this beer at the end. Mouthfeel is silky smooth throughout, and massive all the way. It just ripples along the tongue. This beer does leave a bit of a bitter aftertaste in your mouth. While that certainly leaves you ready for more, it builds in the throat a bit, and I’d imagine if you were heart-burn or reflux prone, this beer would be serious trouble. It’s hard to resist though...oh so hard. In the end, this beer is everything I’d hoped it would be, and that’s saying a lot. The 2005 RIS was the best beer I’d had, nearly, and I fully expected the cellared 2004 to raise the bar again.

hiphops (324) - caldwell, New Jersey, USA - MAR 27, 2006
on tap. might as well be the king of imperial stouts. murky heavy syrupy. very complex. chocolatey

TheEnemy (564) - Chicago, USA - MAR 25, 2006
22oz bomber, presumabley 2005 version.
Courtesy of acertain via trade. Pours a rich dark black with minimal head and no lacing to speak of. Rather lovely aroma of chocolate, licorice, coffee and dried cherries. Flavor is pretty standard imperial stout fare, its primary characteristic being deeply roasted grain with strong, acrid carbon overtones. For the life of me, I don’t know why so many beer aficiandos find this to be a pleasing feature of many imperial stouts, but I most certainly do not. Not all is lost though as the flavor also features nice bits of toffee, hints of dried cherries & raisins, and a gently warming alcohol presence. Chalky palate accompanies a dry-carbon aftertaste. Nice beer, though plenty overrated.

tsarman (794) - Northern, New Jersey, USA - MAR 25, 2006
A great imperial. I really enjoyed it. Up there with the best of the style. Very hearty. Dark as the soul of my friend Jine.

Jine (903) - Nutley, New Jersey, USA - MAR 24, 2006
2.22.06 On tap at Andy’s for Stone Promo Night. Like the crude spilling from a floundering tanker in the Alaskan gulf. Besotting.

FROTHINGSLOSH (8308) - GREENSBURG, Pennsylvania, USA - MAR 20, 2006
UPDATED: AUG 22, 2013 I have had this one sitting around for quite some time - I believe that this is the 2004 batch. Sampled from a 22 oz brown bottle this beer poured thick, black and oily with a huge dark brown head that lingered. The aroma is very strong sweet chocolate with moderate roasty malts. The flavor is strong roasty malts with a tangy middle and a moderately sweet chocolate on the finish. There is a strong floral hop presence throughout. Roasty chocolate lingers on the finish. The beer gets much more bitter and a bit of an alcohol burn comes out as the beer warms. Exceptional.

Boutip (6633) - Gatineau, Quebec, CANADA - MAR 20, 2006
Bottle(room temp – July 2005 release): Poured a pitch-black color stout with a bid foamy dark brown head with pretty good retention. Aroma of roasted malt with some coffee. Roasted caramel malt are easy to distinguish with some very easily distinguishable coffee. I was expecting a bit more complexity (liquorice, chocolate, plums…) or even more hops. Body was quite full and alcohol was well hidden. Overall, this is a very good imperial stout but I was expecting a bit more complexity and I still have to say that I would drink Expedition over this any day.

TheBeerNinja (137) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - MAR 14, 2006
Pours a deep blackish brown with faint reddish tan head. Nose is roasted dark malts and bitter dark chocolate. Flavor is thinner than expected, with thick chocolate notes and sweet malts with a crisp hop bitterness.

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