What follows is the April 24th edition of my weekly column written for DIG Magazine.
While most people dread the letters “IRS,” there are beer lovers that look forward to seeing it every year. Stone Brewing’s Imperial Russian Stout (IRS) is, fittingly, released on April 15 each year. Stone also brews a variant of its IRS in odd numbered years, which means 2013 sees the release of the Espresso IRS.
This beer pours jet black with a tan head that fades rather quickly. Dark chocolate, caramel, dried fruits and coffee aromas meld together well, enticing you to take that first sip. Roasty chocolate bitterness and a hint of vanilla are present upon first taste, followed by a big espresso flavor with the finish. There is a hint of alcohol burn, which quickly fades, leaving you wanting for more.
Stone uses several hundred pounds of Ryan Bros. coffee espresso beans in each batch, and the coffee flavors really accentuate what is already a world-class imperial stout. This is a limited edition beer, so don’t put off grabbing one, or you may be left out.
Find both variations of Stone’s Imperial Russian Stout in 22 ounce bottles at Calandro’s Supermarket for $7.