These Need to Return for Stone’s 20th Anniversary Encore Series
Shortly after Stone Brewing Co. released Stone 19th Anniversary Thunderstruck IPA, they sent out a teaser on social media indicating they would be presenting the world with re-releases of some of their most famous brews form the past 19 years. There are so many beers thought to have been a one-off that we’d love to see make an encore performance.We do understand some of these might be back for the Berlin rebrews. Check these out, and let us know what we missed.
Anniversary Ale Series
Stone 10th Anniversary IPA – This may very well be RuinTen IPA, but we’ll never know for sure. This is a sentimental pick for me, but also an amazing Triple IPA before that was even a thing.
Stone 12th Anniversary Bitter Chocolate Oatmeal Stout – This was dynamite when it was fresh and much like it’s Imperial Russian Stout cousin, aged perfectly. Of note, it was one of the few times Stone didn’t brew a double IPA for their anniversary.
Stone 15th Anniversary Escondidan Imperial Black IPA – After taking the Black IPA world by storm with 11th Anniversary/Sublimely Self Righteous Black IPA, Stone somehow outdid themselves with this beer. It had a mouthfeel like none other, an aroma you could catch 10 feet away, and great shelf stability for such a hoppy beer.
Vertical Epic Series
Stone Vertical Epic 06.06.06 – Much like Stone 10th Anniversary, this is my sentimental pick, as this is when I got deep into my Stone fandom. It’s also one of their best “Belgian” offerings over the years. It’s a well executed beer that resembles a Dubbel.
Stone Vertical Epic 09.09.09 – This was extra delicious when it was first released. The concept was Belgian dark chocolate with hints of orange, and they nailed it.
Ken Schmidt / Maui / Stone Kona Coffee Macadamia Coconut Porter – This was one of the early collaboration beers from Stone, and a remarkable one at that. By this time Maui Brewing had made a good reputation for themselves with their canned Coconut Porter, and Ken Schmidt had been winning homebrew awards with his killer recipes. This beer was balanced, highly drinkable, and not enough was made. Nod to the Bourbon Barrel Aged one that should return as well if possible.
Jason Fields & Kevin Sheppard / Tröegs / Stone Cherry Chocolate Stout – People immediately associate Stone with best-in-class hoppy beers, but they also nail decadent dessert beers. This was a prime example of that. When you read the words Cherry Chocolate Stout, you think of a sugary mess, and this beer was definitely not that.
Ballast Point / Kelsey McNair / Stone San Diego County Session Ale – Long before Go-To IPA, Easy Jack IPA, Even Keel and the hundreds of other Session IPAs on the market, was this beer. This Stone collaboration opened my eyes up to the concept of big bright aroma and flavor with very low alcohol. Kelsey went on to win many more homebrew awards and is opening up North Park Beer Co. as we speak.
Aleman / Two Brothers / Stone DayMan Coffee IPA – This beer and Noble Ale Works Naughty Sauce are the two best coffee beers I’ve ever had among some very strong contenders. The notion that coffee had to be added to a dark roasty beer went right out the window with this. I was terrified to try it, and once I did, I couldn’t get enough. This is one of the unlocked brews for the Berlin project, so hopefully we see this again one way or another.
Rarities and One-Offs (These beers made an appearance here and there but in a very limited capacity)
Stone Suitable for Cave Aging, A Tribute to Danny Williams – Aged in Bourbon Barrels – This beer made it’s debut around the 2012 Great American Beer Festival, in honor of an employee of the Brewers Assocation Danny Williams. Danny apparently had a very impressive gold mine turned beer cellar that was literally a cave. He passed away from cancer at the beginning of 2012. As for the beer, non-barrel aged it was amazing, and the bourbon barrel aged beer ranks at the top of my list for bourbon barrel aged stouts and porters.
StoneWall Ale – Stone brewed a strong barleywine commemorating the opening of their brewery in Escondido in 2005. For the past 10 years, they’ve slowly sampled this beer at their in house events, and by golly, the beer still holds up.
Stone Smoked Porter aged in Lowland Scotch Whiskey Barrels – This was a fun take on the Smoked Porter, and had a slight tartness to it. I was told this was close to what is/was served in England. Very drinkable and delicious.