jasonp (1556) - Ashburn, Virginia, USA - MAR 10, 2007
4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Sampled from bottle at Larry Bell’s Brickskeller event. Deep jet black color with a ring of light beige head. Great nose of intense coffee, oak, light bourbon and yes, a note of that furniture staining stuff (in a good way). Flavor is very earthy and coffee-like with some caramel, wood, light tinge of bourbon and roastiness. The body, although smooth, was a bit on the thin side with very light carbonation. One of the more enjoyable oak-aged beers I’ve had. Very nice stuff.
kmweaver (3207) - Petaluma, California, USA - MAR 9, 2007
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: APR 29, 2008 Rerate, growler, courtesy of nflmvp. Thanks, Steve! Pours an oily, dark chocolate color; light tan head with patchy, fine-bubbled glistening lacing. Solid amounts of coffee, dark chocolate, and a touch of toasty oak in the aroma; lots of coffee, light barrel notes. Medium-to-full mouthfeel: loads of coffee grounds, dark chocolate, and warming alcohol; bourbon aging is well-integrated, but the coffee notes are a bit much. Lengthy finish: lots of coffee, chocolate, and dark chocolate.
Stout / Porter rating #100. Tap, Larry Bell event at Brickskeller. Pours a dark brown core; dark tan head with fine-bubbled lacing. Loads of coffee, vanilla, and light sour-mash whiskey character in the aroma. Medium, coffee mouthfeel: plenty of green coffee, hints of vanilla and roasted marshmallows; very light whiskey character. Long, coffee and roasted malt finish. 188.8.131.52.15=3.8
3fourths (8602) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - MAR 8, 2007
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
2004 version (I think), from a keg. Called Bells Bourbon Aged Java Stout. The nose is pretty remarkable, it’s a buttery bourbon (with lighter wood) scent, the coffee almost unnoticed in the nose, and the malt character is sticky and sweet (at least it smells that way). I like the lack of hops in the nose. That all being said, the bourbon almost comes across as spoiled butter, so it’s not on the level of the Founders Kentucky Breakfast, though it does smell similar. While drinking this someone mentioned furniture varnish, so that’s something I picked up right then... flavorwise it’s better, it’s more wood and less bourbon, especially up front, and on the back the rich and chewy coffee presence is felt. Very good overall.
argo0 (12124) - Washington DC, USA - MAR 8, 2007
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Minimal tan head atop brown-black body. Aroma is medium sweet, coffee, vanilla/Bourbon. Taste is medium sweet, vanilla, coffee/chocolate, light alcohol burn, wood. Medium-full body with minimal carbonation.
Styles (2014) - Lincoln Park, Michigan, USA - JAN 3, 2007
3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 10/20
Draft E-Day 05’. Dark brown semi-transparent around edges. Huge coffee aroma and flavor, with only minor hints of wood. served way too cold, like my face is burried in coffee grinds. Too much. As it warmed, no mention of bourbon, but getting a pretty big vanilla character. Long bitter coffee aftertaste. Coffee is just not my thing.
ryan (3186) - Beltsville, Maryland, USA - OCT 11, 2006
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: MAR 23, 2010 GTMW 06. Black, opaque body with no head. The aroma is coffee, bourbon and chocolates. The flavor is coffee, chocolate, light whiskey and a touch of alcohol. Medium body and oily.
JCapriotti (1379) - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - AUG 17, 2006
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
2006 GTMW. Thanks Larry!
No head. Murky dark brown; murky black body. Brown sugary coffee and bourbon come off the aroma. Bourbony sweet coffee flavor. Delicious. Body is a little thin, but very mellow and well-melded flavor. A nice beer for the barrel.
Brigadier (3250) - Clevelandish, Ohio, USA - AUG 15, 2006
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Great Taste of the Midwest
artusory gave me about half of his pour while we waited in line for Alpha
Khan at the Three Floyd’s booth. I’m glad to have tried simply because it
confirmed that my desire not to wait in line was probably the right one.
It wasn’t bad but at the same time it was not quite on the level of the other
bourbon barrel aged beers sprawled around the festival grounds. I should
try the regular Java stout for reference to see how the aging changed it.
Aroma / Appearance - Bourbon notes were strong, along with dark
chocolate and Java coffee (of course). The body was jet black with virtually
no head or lacing. I was there had been more to the nose - maybe I should
give it a closer sniff at some point.
Flavor / Palate - It was a little thin coming down my throat but
some sweetness compensated a little bit. Hints of vanilla creamer, malt
and filtered coffee grounds were apparent but not overwhelming. Overall it
was enjoyable but at the same time I was not impressed. This was probably
one of the bigger disappointments of the day in my opinion, though others
StewardofGondor (1934) - Washington Heights - Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA - AUG 15, 2006
4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Tap @ GTMW 2006, with a handshake and “God bless you” to Larry after he filled my glass to the brim. Opaque and midnight brown in color with no movement anywhere. Sweet chocolate morsels and caramel chipped cookies implore the nose, annotated by a whisky & rye trait and an aged mocha bean depth. All in all, a priceless, priceless, priceless bourbon chocolate array. Oozing liquidity streams into the mouth with chocolate and caramel accented bourbon. It’s a straight, mystical stream running down the hatch. Caramel mocha coolers become a main flavor player with a classic milk chocolate elegance. Granular grinds are melded into the straight stream, conjuring up semi-sweet chocolate nodes as it passes through. Coating palate warmth with a vanilla bean complexity. Delicate artesian fudge with interwoven bourbon-soaked mocha beans create an ever memorable finish.
Ughsmash (7364) - Pewaukee, Wisconsin, USA - AUG 14, 2006
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
On tap at the Great Taste of the Midwest, poured by Mr. Bell himself! Poured a very deep brown with some lighter brown at the edges. Nose was deep, with lightly-burnt coffee maltage, hints of dark chocolate, rich vanilla, and oaky bourbon sugars. Burnt coffee bitterness and citrus tartness provide a fine first impression on the tastebuds... followed up by more coffee grounds, dark chocolate, oak, and warm bourbon. Flavors meshed very well. Fuller on the palate than it appeared in the pour, with sticky dark malts and alcohol at the finish. Excellent brew!