Legend says that imperial stouts were born from a request of Peter the Great to an English brewery. On a trip to Britain in the late 1600s, the Emperor tasted a dark beer and loved it so much that he asked the brewers to ship some to his home country. To prevent the beer from spoiling during the long trip, the English brewers added more alcohol and hops. In the 1700s, the brewer Barclay Perkins started to import imperial stouts to Russia, which quickly became very popular in the country. The “imperial” name is due to the empress Catherine the Great, who first discovered the imported dark beer.
How do these beers taste?
These stouts are in the 90 to 100 range of the International Bitterness Unit (IBU) scale. They can feature notes of cocoa, coffee and dried fruit. Some American varieties age in bourbon barrels, so they feature different notes like vanilla and caramel. Remember to drink your stout at room temperature to get the most out of its unique flavor. Pour it in a snifter, pint glass or tulip glass, and you’re ready to go! These seasonal beers pair well with stinky or creamy cheeses like Stilton, smoked Gouda, Camembert and brie. They also taste delicious with beef dishes, dark chocolate and desserts.
Are there flavored imperial stouts?
There are, and they mostly hail from the United States, and they’re mouth-watering. Flavor them with any infusion that you can possibly think of from molasses and exotic fruits to coffee. If you’re looking from something different to your usual oatmeal stouts, you can try this style of beer.
Shop Drizly online or see if we’ve made it to your city. Click these links to search for Drizly in your city, and look for liquor stores on Drizly near you.