Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout Review

Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout, which is produced in Fort Bragg, California by North Coast Brewing Company, is a delicious craft beer that is made in the spirit and tradition of 18th century British brewers who “supplied the court” of Catherine the Great [1]. A drawing featuring the grizzly face of Grigory Rasputin himself graces the label of this world class beer along with a phrase, which is written in Russian, and translates to “a sincere friend is not born instantly" [1]. According to legend, on a bitter night in December of 1916, an unbreakable Grigory Rasputin survived being poisoned, beaten, stabbed, and shot multiple times by a group of aristocrats before he was finally hurled into the icy Neva River where he would ultimately perish [2]. Old Rasputin Imperial Stout, on the other hand, is exceptionally more polished and cultivated than its namesake. 

Old Rasputin has garnered the reputation of being one of the more flavorful beers in circulation. Old Rasputin checks in at nine percent Alcohol by Volume, and one sip will warm you to your core even on the chilliest of days. Many would argue Old Rasputin is the quintessential winter beer. When poured into a glass, it is as black as the ace of spades with a nice, thick, rich, and creamy head. Moreover, the aroma of chocolate, hot cocoa, and roasted coffee instantly fills one's nostrils once the bottle has been opened as well. After taking the first sip, the impeccably blended flavors of chocolate and roasted malts erupt in one’s mouth, and the finish is as smooth as a glacier stream. However, it is a brew for those who have experience drinking darker beers such as porters and other stouts. Those who have grown accustomed to drinking only light beer, and have a history of depriving their taste buds of full bodied beer, will likely have a different reaction and find Old Rasputin abrasive and heavy.   

Old Rasputin has won several awards, including, but not limited to, winning the gold medal at the World Beer Championships in Chicago a total of seven times, and also taking home the gold medal at Sweden’s Stockholm Beer and Whiskey Festival in 2006 and again in 2012 [1]. Furthermore, Bill Owens, the President of the American Distilling Institute, has also stated Old Rasputin is “the best beer of the world” in his eyes [1]. Therefore, it is needless to say that Old Rasputin has certainly earned the right to be given a taste by any premium beer connoisseur.  

Till next time,



[1]Old Rasputin Imperial Stout.” North Coast Brewing Co. (Accessed Aug 4, 2013)
[2]Rasputin Biography.” The History Channel Website.“ (Accessed Aug 4, 2013).

Disclaimer: This is not intended to promote or encourage the use of alcohol. This is merely an evaluation of a product.