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Beer Information
Average Review High Score Low Score Reviews Tried Consumed
67 80 54 2 18 18
Marshal Zhukov's Imperial Stout by Cigar City Brewing
Russian Imperial Stout
11.00 % ABV

Review by Surly Duff on 01/15/10  
Score Appearance Smell Taste Mouthfeel Overall Impression Year
54 2 6 11 3 5 2009
Picked this bottle up at Total Wine and More in Ft. Myers, FL while on vacation and had it while I was there.

Pours a jet black with a small bit of brown head that quickly settles and leaves a ring of deep brown around the edge of the glass and a small island of deep brown floating in the middle.

Deep malty notes with coffee, dark toffee, some chocolate, and nice roasted malt. Note of bourbon and a hint of smoke. Nice woodsy note comes through as it warms.

Smooth malt body with lots of roasted malt flavor. Mellow sweetness with plenty of chocolate. Deep caramel and dark toffee. Just a hint of alcohol in the flavor but hardly there. More roasted malt in the aftertaste.

Carbonation is a bit fine and a bit more then I like from an imperial stout. Still very nicely drinkable. Sadly nothing really stands out about this brew. I wanted to really like it but just didn't find anything that'd make me buy it again.

Price: $11.99 Served In: Pint Glass

Review by Dr. Rockzo on 12/16/09  
Score Appearance Smell Taste Mouthfeel Overall Impression Year
80 3 9 16 4 8 2009
Thanks to John for a very nice trade in the past. This bottle has been calling my name since I first got it and on this blustery, bone-chilling night in Chicago I thought now’s as good a time as ever. Poured from a 750mL bottle into a Darkness snifter.

A: Pours a rich, thick, and slick-looking motor oil black color with a similar viscous consistency as said lubricant. This mother has NO highlights to it…dark as a black hole; it actually absorbs and destroys light. An amazingly big 2 finger DARK mocha/coffee colored head builds slowly and recedes even slower leaving thin trails of lace here and there as it goes. The body and color of this beer are just out of this world though, gorgeous.

S: The smell is very different from a lot of RIS’s I’ve had recently that have been really hoppy. MZ is somewhat of antithesis in that it’s totally about the English malts. Loads of charred malt, some campfire smokiness, dark-chocolate and rum soaked dark berries, and some burnt molasses all come together to form a wonderful blend of aromas. A pinch of herbal/leafy English hops come through far in the background, but the malts are showcased here. Plenty of complexity but it could maybe use just a touch more intensity.

T: The taste is actually more pungent than the smell let on, but it also grows to be quite palate-destroying after a while too. The main aspects at the forefront are the dry charred-wood/roasted-malt flavor and subtle campfire smoke backing but there’s also decent bit of a booze-soaked chocolate-covered berry thing going on like in the aroma. A touch of burnt caramel/molasses sweetness adds some balance to the intense roastiness, but over all it’s dominatingly dark and roasty with a pervasive dryness. Definitely tasty but a bit hard to sip quickly for me.

M: The mouthfeel is full bodied and almost chewy, with a very appropriate level of lower-moderate backing carbonation. The consistency is thick and coating, but more in a dry (semi-chalky) and bitter way than in a sweet way like most RIS’s, although there is a decent dose of stickiness up front. Alcohol heat is fairly well hidden with only a tickling warmth building on the throat after each sip. This is one to savor slowly, but it goes down pretty easily in that context.

D: Like I previously stated, this is one heck of a dry beast of a beer that requires much patience from the imbiber. It took me a good hour+ to finish the glass and a half I had, but I enjoyed every sip of it more and more as it warmed up slowly. I’d love to age one of these to see how it develops/smoothes-out, it reminds me a lot of expedition stout and that’s a very good thing.

Cigar City isn’t godlike in my eyes like they are for many other craft beer drinkers, but they do consistently pump out consistently good beers. MZ is a prime example of their skills with dark beers and almost rivals the 110k+OT b2 I’ve had several times in the past. Keep up the good work in the wang of America CCB! 28.7 thumbs up.

Served In: Snifter

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