pepsican (1496) - @ $13.99, Iowa, USA - MAY 12, 2008
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Rating #500. Yay! Pours black with a brown head. Aroma is strong coffee and oak. Flavor again is more strong coffee, oak, bourbon, cream, toffee, booze, and just a hint of paper. Silky smooth mouthfeel. Some hint of the abv. I really liked this one, but after everything was said and done I almost prefer the non BA speedway. I did here from a few folks I shared this with it wasnít up to par with other bottles tasted. Still though, Iím so glad I finally got to try this. Thanks ratebeer in general for this one!
MadIndian (2571) - Levittown, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 11, 2008
5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
Bottle from ebay purchase. Sampled with Stegosaurus. Bottle from 2006 #46 of 235. BANG WOW ! Aroma god like Chocolate, bourbon wood and roast. The pour is almost black but you can see a reddish hue. A very thin tan head. First taste is over whelming. The second taste you notice a perfect blend of Chocolate , vanilla, bourbon oak with a roasty bitter finish. Absolutely world class.
Ofortuna (322) - Grafton, Wisconsin, USA - MAY 10, 2008
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
From my backlog. Many thanks to Chuck for this rare treat. 2004 vintage #11 of 240. Poured a loose head with a decent amount of lacing. Right off the bat I get an upfront dose of sour in the aroma. Soon after a wave of bourbon and oak sweep through. I feel aweful before I even take the first sip. Soon after I imbibe, my fears are confirmed: this is far past its prime. There is still remnants of what used to be: wonderful richness of the base beer, beautiful example of barrel-aging, great complexity hidden underneath. Unfortunately, all of that is dominated by the degregation of time. A dominant sour character has taken over and thinned its body. Itís aggressive nature overshadows what a magnificient beer this must have once been. I can peer through this veil and sense glimmers of its once glorious past, but itís now a shadow of its former self. The experience was poor for me and I felt aweful at the loss.
jimbowood (1036) - Freeport, Georgia, USA - MAY 9, 2008
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
bottle from my bro naven. Overrated. I mean, its good, but its not awesome. I wanted a 5.0, and this is not that good. Expectations outweigh substance. Flavor is malty, a little cloying. Nice, Iíd drink 4 more, but I wouldnít go to the ends of the earth to get it like I wouldve yesterday.
mjg74 (2720) - Salem, Oregon, USA - APR 28, 2008
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: OCT 15, 2008 Bottle (2006, #165) from brewery. Slick black upon pouring. Low carbonation. Very oily appearance. Dark fruity aroma. Bourbon and vanilla, along with some oak. Big bourbon flavor up front. Somewhat boozy. Huge flavors. Some sweetness. Warming going down. Some bitterness in the finish. Seems like it could age a longer. Good impy with a lot of character. Nice coffee finish.
stubby (334) - Santee, California, USA - APR 25, 2008
2.8 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 10/20
I must be one of the few beer geeks that is not terribly fond of this massive brew from local favorites, Alesmith. To thick for me, and I would like a bit of carbonation but every Speedway Iíve had, BA, aged, or fresh, was still. Surely my palate is not up to the task of this complex roast bomb, itís me not you.
hapjydeuce (970) - Carlsbad, California, USA - APR 17, 2008
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
2006 vintage, from the brewery. Sampled along side a regular 2007 Speedway Stout. This made for an interesting tasting experience after trying it first with jarspag a few days earlier. Itís been a long time coming for this rarity. The pour is velvety black, and nearly still. Faint wisps of carbonation swirl on the surface, with some light reaching through the deep maroon edges. Awesome aroma of intense chocolate and bourbon oak, with a big molasses and licorice presence mixed in. The aroma is much more mature and mellowed compared to the regular Speedway (which is comprised more so of fresh coffee and oats), but I canít say itís that much better. The flavors here are less of the major coffee presence, and more of a cellared, charred wood tone from the bourbon barrel. While the barrel is not as prominent as BA Wee Heavy or Numbskull, it does add a unique and intriguing layer of complexity to that which is Speedway. Pretty outstanding mouth-feel, just a lot different than normal; oily and coating the palate, minus the carbonation. A tad of a sour, oxidized tang in the finish, but it didnít downgrade the overall experience that much.
Overall, yes I think that fresh (and aged) original Speedway does dominate the Imperial Stout style; this blew me away, but not as much as Alesmithís other barrel-aged beers. Hats off on this creation however, I enjoyed it thoroughly.
jarspag (601) - San Francisco, California, USA - APR 16, 2008
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Two different 2006 vintages sampled on 4/12/08 & 4/15/08. Props to Justin to cracking this during 4/12 tasting. Sampled side by side normal Speedway. Been waiting a long, long time to try this....
Rich, robust and intriguing aromas of dark fruits, sweet sticky bourbon, dark chocolate, warmth, oak. Flavor becomes increasingly bourbon/caramel SWEET. I mean really sticky sweet...there is a big presence of dark fruits and licorice behind the sweet malts and dark chocolate. The roasty, long bitter coffee presense is completely consumed. In comparison to the full bodied, amazing palate on the normal Speed - this mouthfeel just doesnít stand up. As much as I wanted to love this beer, I canít help but give all the praise back to the original masterpiece. This didnít seem to take on the same barrel presence as their other BAís - it was missing that elegant, velvety, "WOW" characteristic in the palate that I found in a beers like BA numbskull/decadence. Iím afraid this might be a touch hyped. Hopefully some age will put the cloying characteristics in check. Donít get me wrong, this is still an amazing beer - but for now, I like Speedway minus the barrel, who would have thought!!!
doubleo (1432) - San Diego, California, USA - APR 11, 2008
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
2006 Vintage, bottle #226 of 235. Pours black with just a few bubbles. No head, no lace, comewhat thick looking. Smells of vanilla, chocolate, coffee and wood. Tastes of roasty, dark malts up front and then the bourbon and coffee and wood kick in. I donít taste the big coffee flavors like in un-BA Speedway but the barrel flavors are not overpowering. Thick body with a few fizzies but no real carbonation.
WeeHeavySD (3361) - Portland, Oregon, USA - APR 5, 2008
4.8 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
4th Beer of the Beer Spot Tasting Sunday March 30th, 2008. Bottle provided by Westsidethreat, thanks Skye. 04 Vintage Bottle. #50/228. Pours black with a light brown ring. Nose is sick, bourbon, coffee, and chocolate with rich deep malts. Taste is sweet, bourbon with a big sweet chocolate feeling. Really nice and oh so awesome. This beer has been a long long long time coming for me and it was worth the wait.