Here is some good news for the Russian Imperial Stout lovers in the Treasure Valley.
For the first time, you don’t have to drive all the way to Fort Bragg’s North Coast Brewing Co. on California’s Mendocino Coast to buy a bottle of the super-rare Old Rasputin anniversary stout, which spent over a year aging in bourbon barrels.
All you have to do this year is drive over the the Boise Co-op, with $15.89 ($14.99 plus .90 cents tax) in your pocket, and you can walk out with a 500 ml (16.9 ounces) bottle of Old Rasputin XII.
The Old Rasputin XII is the first batch that North Coast Brewing has been able to brew enough of to actually move out to their distributors for sale all over the U.S. The first two batches (Old Rasputin X and XI) were only sold at the brewery in Fort Bragg. (Yes, I know the link goes to Old Rasputin XI, but the North Coast folks have been too busy to post a XII description on their Web site).
North Coast Brewing Senior Vice President Doug Moody said the company was able to send out 2,000 cases of the Old Rasputin XII “but could have sold 8,000 if we had them.”
“We are selling regular Old Rasputin as fast as we can make it,” Moody said. “It was hard to put enough away in barrels to make this batch.”
The Old Rasputin anniversary stout is a niche product, but it’s a niche product with a passionate and devoted following. Contributors to popular beer web sites like ratebeer.com and beeradvocate.com give the Old Rasputin XII totally high marks.
In fact, former Idaho Statesman reporter Heath Druzin, who is now working for the Stars and Stripes newspaper and splitting time between Germany and Iraq, just emailed and asked me to secure him a few bottles before the XII sells out, even though he doesn’t expect to be stateside for about six months or so.
How could I refuse a request like that? Local supplies are limited, so if you want a bottle, hit the Boise Co-op soon.