Saturday, October 20, 2012

Victory Storm King Imperial Stout - Gus #7

This brew today comes from Victory Brewing Company out of Downingtown, PA.  It has received a lot of great reviews and came recommended to me by Tom in NJ.  He sent me a bottle down in a trade.  With stouts being my favorite style of beer, I was excited to try it.  Here is the review for Victory's Storm King Imperial Stout.

How it rates with others:

ratebeer review:

Information from Victory's website:
Malts:  Imported 2 row
Hops:  American whole flowers
ABV:  9.1%

"With a huge, Pacific Northwest hop aroma & character upfront, Storm King subsides into massive, roast malt complexity.  Rich and substantial, it will warm your heart."

I poured the 12oz bottle into a nonic pint glass.

Appearance:  Pours jet black.  Looks to be a pretty think body on it.  There are thicker pouring stouts but this one looks great.  A solid one finger head of creamy, slightly mocha-brown head.  I didn't really pour it aggressively.  Very dark appearance after it has settled.  Almost no light coming through.  Maybe a little on the edges of the glass.  Showing a very deep red, dark brown color.  There is some carbonation streaming up the side of the glass.  Very good lacing on this one as well as some alcohol legs.

Aroma:  Up front it really has more of a hoppy aroma than the malt base one would expect.  Slightly spicy and floral.  Pine notes in there as well.  After that I do pick up the coffee notes.  Some roasted malts.  Slight caramel and toffee aromas.  Big dark chocolate bitterness that mixes well with the hops.  Really interesting to have such a hop forward stout.  I really enjoyed the aroma on this one as something different than the norm.  After it warmed a bit there was more of the creamy coffee smell.

Taste:  Same as the nose, an instant hop bitterness up front.  More of a floral character to it.  Then the sweet coffee flavors just coat the mouth.  Traces of that dark chocolate that are very nice.  It's so interesting how the hops are right up front but give way to malt flavors as it hits mid palate.  Really has that complex Black IPA feel to it.  Pretty heavy mouthfeel to it.  Maybe just a slight alcohol taste in there but it's not really warming the back of the throat or standing out too much.  Very well hidden I believe.  Super drinkable being 9.1% ABV.  

Verdict:  A very nice take on an imperial stout.  Creamy but not too thick.  Lots of good malt characters while still getting the hop characteristics.  I would like to cellar one of these to see if the hops held up.  If they did die off it would be interesting to see what the malts alone would be like.  Being a year round offering and readily available, I'm going to give this one an A-.  Really nice stuff from Victory.  If I could get more of their stuff regularly I would be a happy fella.  I've had a few other brews from them and those were great as well.

Let me know what you think of this brew if you have had it.  It really was enjoyable to me being that it was a hoppy stout.  I would love to pair this with a good cheese plate or an after meal drink.  That's how I like most of my stouts.  Really close to those Black IPAs out there.  Again very, very nice.

Thanks for reading!