jonno (2761) - JAPAN - MAY 14, 2009
Either this recipe is slightly different to the XI or the conditions I drunk it under were different, but this was a touch disappointing. Still a good beer, but after having a taste of the XI from a friend this couldn’t match up. Similar to the arrogant bastard in many ways, but the hops were not as bitter as I expected. Very good but not great lamas (1636) - Washington DC, USA - MAY 19, 2009
22 oz. bottle. Enjoy by: 06/30/09. Deep mahogany pour with a finger-thick khaki head. Great balance in the aroma - loads of pine and grapefruits along with caramel, vanilla, and some chocolate. Medium-bodied. Excellent balance taste-wise too. Starts off with some slightly toasty caramel maltiness and hints of dark chocolate. Grapefruits at the end. Fairly dry finish with some peppery tongue stinging that lingers. Some subtly warming alcohol underneath it all. gkost (1069) - Alaska, USA - MAY 25, 2009
Pours jet black, thin head. Hoppy nose. Flavor is Bitter hops, some liquorice. Thinner body with a bitter back end. Good black IPA. RollinHard (1024) - Fort Worth, Texas, USA - JUN 8, 2009
Rated this as Stone 11th, back in March ’09 or something. Thanks Mar! This was good. Aroma of grapefruit, grape stems (?), produce isle (fruit), dark rye bread, wood, and a wee bit of oxidation or was it just old hops. Tastes quite malty after than aroma with brown sugar, toast, crust, a light amount of roast, wood and grapefruit hops that seem old somehow. It fits the malt profile though. Finishes bitter with char, wood, bread and grapefruit. Medium to heavy bodied and silky smooth. baraciisch (3231) - California, USA - JUN 24, 2009
Black reddish in color... Aroma is citrus hops... Flavor is citrusy and malty, very interesting for a darker beer... Finish is sweet and citrusy, yet notes of coffee and chocolate malts on the palate... Really nice beer.
Doon (109) - Phoenix, Arizona, USA - JUL 2, 2009
Another nice beer from Stone. Pours a dark brown color with a huge head. I wasn’t sure to make of it at first, but one whiff had me sold. It had a strong hoppy aroma. Not seeing the bottle prior to the pour, I was thinking this was some sort of stout. Not so! Nice fruity/citrusy aroma with a taste that matches. Very crisp, light, and smooth. Try this one! timsilvia32 (449) - from Michigan now in Charlotte, North Carolina, USA - JUL 5, 2009
22 oz. Anniversary ale bottle. Dark brown/black pour. Frothy tan head. A little musty smelling, with piney hop and some roast and burnt malt. Taste has plenty of roasted malt, some dark chocolate. Very clean finishing with biter coffee, bakers chocolate, pretty dry. Medium bodied with good carbonation. I think 1 year of age would have been about perfect, this was just a little over. The 2 years really mellowed the hops, which was good for me. Good balance of malt, roast and hops. A real nice drinker, with only slightly high abv, which is not noticeable at all anyways. Skeets (25) - Sacramento, California, USA - JUL 9, 2009
Great aroma with that slight bit of malt in there. Nice strong IIPA hoppiness in the flavor. Has got slight more bitter finish than I would prefer, but a great all round beer. Would get more if I could find them. jhumphries69 (1034) - Tyrone, Georgia, USA - AUG 1, 2009
22oz bomber. Pours black with subtle dark brown highlights and an immense, soft, pocked tan head that leaves a few thin but wide sheets of lace on the glass. The aroma starts with a pungent blast of hops. It smells like Chinook (and I should know because I still have Chinook resin on my fingers from harvesting them from my own plant this afternoon). There are other notes in there, too - perhaps grapefruit (centennial or amarillo?). And there is some alcohol and a touch of dry, dark roasted grain (like a background note of espresso). The flavor starts hoppy and bitter (since bitterness is usually registered at the back of the tongue, this must be some tannic/astringent mouthfeel influencing the flavor). This is some serious stuff. It is very hoppy - tingly pine needles and resin all over the tongue. After a few sips, fruity notes (prunes with chocolate?) appear up front. Instead of being balanced by malt sweetness (or at least a wave of bready, even if dry, malts), it is instead backed by a wave of drying roasty coffee-ish blackness. Intense. Its assault on the palate does not let up. At mid-palate, there are subtle smoky, almost woody, notes along with a very slight chocolatey/caramel malt sweetness. But the sweetness is brief. There is some fruity ester quality deftly tucked in there, but it is subtle. The finish is oh-so-dry with a big wave of roasty intense stoutiness following by surges of insane hop bitterness. This beer is very bitter. The mouthfeel is unbelievably good - velvety, full-body with a luscious loftiness from just the right level of carbonation. There is also a peculiar dryness and light astringency all over - but not enough to detract from the otherwise brilliant texture. Overall, slightly disappointing. Don’t get me wrong - it seems like a wonderful beer in most aspects, but overall it is just not balanced enough. Ruination was intensely bitter but provided better balance. With a touch of sweetness somewhere in there, this could have been so much better. It is still a very nice beer, but the more I drink the more I find myself wishing it were a little less astringent - a little less brutal. Perhaps I only feel this way because I’m drinking the whole bomber by myself. Had I been just drinking 11ounces, my palate might not be feeling so abused right now... Sonicdescent (384) - Donora, Pennsylvania, USA - AUG 6, 2009
This is a review from a Stone XI bottle, so the hops have faded a bit, but surprisingly not too much. The Stout lover can now sneak an IPA without anyone knowing.