Stone Escondidian Imperial Black Ipa

Beer Review: Stone 15th Anniversary Escondidian Imperial Black IPA


Somedays you just crave something that you wouldn’t normally want. You just feel like shaking things up a bit.  Step out of the norm, right?

Well, it was this kind of day.  Saw a bottle of Stone Escondidian Imperial Black IPA #15, asked Ed at Ledger’s bottle shop what the word was on this. Said if you are a “Hop Head” you will like.

That’s really all I needed.  I was never drawn to “black ipa’s”.  Just wasn’t curious enough I guess.  I took Ed’s advice and pulled up my pant legs and waded in.

Now for the Beer Review!

Beer bottle is open, grabbed the nearest pint glass and the pouring commenced. 

Pours a dark black with a nice head reminiscent of a freshly pulled espresso.  It’s like looking at my two favorite beverages at once.

Smell is roasted malt, chocolate nibs, booze and small hint of pine.  This smell intrigues the hell out of me. It can go either way here.  Maybe I should pull my pant legs up a little higher.

I go in for the taste, not really knowing what I’m in for.  I took Ed’s advice about it being a great beer for hop heads, respecting AND agreeing with most of his recommendations being spot on.   A definite doubt sets in.  

First taste is smooth stout with dash of chocolate nib, tobacco and hint of vanilla. Just as this taste floods my palate, it quickly turns to pine needle, grapefruit and bitter hop.  Wow. This beer is like Stride flavor-changing gum.  You get stout flavor up front, then an imperial ipa with the finish.

This beer is complex but balanced and extremely easy to drink.  I like this beer but it perplexes me at the same time.   The 10.8 % hits you pretty quick and as it warms.
Overall, I like this beer. Would I drink it again? Absolutely.  Oh, by the way Ed, you’re recommendations are still solid in my book.


15th Anniversary Escondidian Imperial Black IPA| ABV 10.80% | $6.49 for 22 oz.
Stone Brewing Company.
Escondido, CA


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