Stone Brewing Co. was founded in 1996 by Greg Koch and Steve Wagner in San Marcos, CA. Since its inception, Stone has crafted some of the most insane and sought after beers. One of their “odd year” releases for 2015 is a Russian Imperial Stout brewed with chai spices and black tea. This limited release brew is sure to have you saving “oh chai!”
The beer pours a deep dark brown that is almost black. The rich tan colored two finger head dissipates slowly and leaves behind just a light lacing a top the beer.
Chai spice aromas dominate. Notes of cinnamon, ginger, cardamom and clove are discernible. Underneath the chai spice are notes of chocolate and coffee. Rounding out the whole sha-bang is roasted malt aroma.
On the palate, this full bodied brew delivers on the spice notes promised by the bouquet. The cinnamon and ginger hit first in tandem. The cardamom and the clove are next and met with a touch of sweet tea. As the spice settles, you will find stout notes of rich cocoa and coffee that with notes of roasted malts, balance the spice. A smooth warming finish completes the profile.
Another winner from Stone. I wouldn’t recommend this to someone who isn’t a fan of Chai, but for those that are, it’s a must try. Pair this one with blue cheese, coffee rubbed filet or vanilla ice cream.
The Beer Buyer Overall Rating: 4.0 Out of 5 Pints