5 Best Double / Imperial Stouts of 2021
Bigger is better, an adage that the world of craft beer has really taken to heart. Over the last decade or so we've seen an intensification of styles. Sour beers have added pucker, IPAs have become cloudier, hazier, juicier, and at times more bitter. And stouts have become boozier, darker, and more indulgent.
Recognized for its rich, strong style, the Imperial stout has an equally rich and strong history. Originally brewed by major porter brewers in London for export to the Baltic countries and Russia, the "extra stout" porter gained popularity in the late 18th century. As the story goes Czarina Catherine the Great, the empress of Russia from 1762-1796, and the country's longest-ruling female leader, thoroughly enjoyed these brownest and strongest of English beers and helped them gain popularity.
More recently in America, Goose Island brewmaster Greg Hall elevated the style when he had the brilliant idea to age Goose Island's one-thousandth batch of beer in a bourbon barrel in 1992. Bourbon County Stout changed beer forever as the country's first bourbon barrel-aged beer, setting off a whole new exploration of the Imperial and Double stouts that we've come to know and love today.
While there are countless fantastic versions here are Untappd's 5 Highest Rated Imperial / Double Stouts of 2021:
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If you think these Imperial and Double stouts are bigger and better you should see some of the craziest beers Hop Culture Founder Kenny Gould tries each week. On each episode of The Craziest Beer I Had This Week, Kenny drops a new crazy beer he's cracked. Watch last week's episode and don't forget to subscribe to Hop Culture's YouTube channel so you never miss a beat on the wild beer Kenny drinks next!