csbosox (1221) - Prairie Village, Kansas, USA - JAN 3, 2006
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Thanks to Eric/Heemer for this contribution to the 2005 KC holiday party. Eric was very generous to contribute a couple bottles for the tasting and another for the host! Dark brown color, no head to speak of. Foam dots are left on the glass. Aroma is oak & bouron, some vanilla, and chocolate. Good mouthfeel. Initial taste of chocolate, mocha, and bourbon. The finish is oak and bourbon.
acertain (249) - Seattle, Washington, USA - JAN 1, 2006
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Thanks Hezron! Pours black with a thin head. Rich chocolate and coffee aromas with a hint of something I couldn’t identify. Maybe it was the bourbon, though it seemed a little off to me. Nice in the mouth. Flavor is a wonderful coffee/chocolate combination. It’s what I was hoping Bell’s Double Cream Stout was going to taste like. It’s not sweet, nor bitter, but it has significant alcohol warming. Definitely in my top 5!
tjthresh (1865) - Greenfield, Indiana, USA - JAN 1, 2006
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
12oz 2005. Thanks heemer77. Dark brown with a full tan or light brown head that fades rather quickly. Aromas of bitter dark chocolate, oak, and the faintest bourbon character. As the beer warms, the boubon presents its self a bit better, but the bourbon character in this beer is way restrained. Medium body, but this for an impy. A nice beer, but not all that.
Indra (2594) - Overland Park, Kansas, USA - JAN 1, 2006
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: JAN 2, 2006 12oz. - 2005 bottling. Aroma features some caramel corn and sweet, chocolatey, roasty malt, only vague hints of bourbon, wood and sour fruit, perhaps some gingerbread. Dark brown in color, head is uneven and slight with lacing to match. Flavor profile is bittersweet, malty, roasty and fill of dusty cocoa, more caramel and toffee along with hints of bourbon, cherry and oak, finish is somewhat abrupt. Mouthfeel is semi-dry and lively, body is medium-full. Interesting in its somewhat reserved character, certainly not your typical over-the-top bourbon Imperial, and not just because the alcohol is so well masked. Thanks, Eric!
PhillyBeer2112 (2517) - Oviedo, Florida, USA - DEC 31, 2005
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Very dark brown with a touch of red. Slight hint at BO in the nose, with some caramel malt and a hefty nose of oak, baking chocolate. Bourbon character is restrained to my nose, with the woody oak character dominating. Smooth and rounded, slight oak flavors, seemingly alot of caramel malt up front, and a big acrid finish. Husky and tannic, the acrid black malt covers any bourbon character.
Gorbalev (2911) - Ontario, CANADA - DEC 31, 2005
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle. Black, small beige head, lots of bubbles. Lovely whisky aroma - sweet alcohol and malt. Taste is also very sweet from the bourbon barrel, with alcohol and hops in the backgrounds. It remains pretty balanced, but can get a little harsh as it warms, something I have found in most barrel-aged beers. A rich tasting flavourful beer that I would like to try without the barrel aged part. Thanks again to Captain Cougar for the trade.
ClarkVV (3892) - Allston, Massachusetts, USA - DEC 30, 2005
3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
UPDATED: JUN 27, 2006 2005 bottle from StewardofGondor, sampled side by side with the non-barrel version on 12/22/05 with Rastacouere and Siroy.
Yet another intensely filtered pour yields approximately the same results as the non BA version. The lack of age on this one allows the head to recede a little more slowly, but it is soon only a tan ring on the edges atop a deep, milk chocolate brown body, that is frighteningly clear.
Aroma of strong bourbon aging, translating in to plenty of syrupy vanilla and dry woodiness. German chocolate cake soaked in brandy, quite dry on the end and fairly strong, but lacking any hops or roast.
Flavor begins with a strongly dry wood effect, huge vanilla and warming alcohol notes with the chocolate from the regular version mixing to add a sort of marshmallow like sweetness on the side. But the bourbon barrel is tyrant here, not so much, this time, from an over exposure to the barrel, as it is from the lack of a base stout that can really handle the barrel gracefully. Earthy, composty, salty coffee rinds build on the palate, with the vanilla softening and the alcohol only a slight sting on the end.
Body is mediumish, but horribly filtered and overcarbonated, leading to a vapid, unsubstantial texture. The word complex never really comes to mind. Basically a coffee-chocolate stout exposed to strong bourbon. Horribly lacking texture, no hop apparency. Barrel-aging is interesting, but why is this top 50? Not trying to be cynical and purposefully against the grain, but I just don’t get it. Will revisit in a year.
Rerate. 05 bottle consumed 6/27/06. It’s only been 6 months but still a rerate is in order.
Well this is just strange. Great head retention, nearly perfect and creamy with plenty of lacing. But the aroma is all bourbon, some very light smoke and traces of black malt. Very burnt and dark and like usual, too much bourbon (though the coconut vanilla has died down). The flavor is too bourbony while the texture still disappoints, watery and loose. Still, there is enough malt to keep interest and some nice ashiness and roast on the very end. 6/4/5/2/12.
Total score is an average of the two.
Rastacouere (6122) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - DEC 26, 2005
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Lasting off-white foamy ring covers the see through, apparently heavily filtered deep brown body. Sweetish desserty nose with interesting coconut and cakey chocolate aspects. Honest bourbon bottom seems fitting in that neighbourhood. Grows minty and with more coconut in mouth, a light underlying smokiness peaks through a vanilla roughness. Woody and chocolatey. Good evolution, well roasted, I just kept looking for the demarcation that would make it unique without success. It is well balanced, I guess it’s mostly the mouthfeel’s hyperactivity that doesn’t make it as good as it sounds for me. Restricted alcohol appearance. Strong carbonation bites the tongue through a light-medium body that once again disappoints, the bubbliness possibly detracting the flavour deployment and giving it a drier feel than it really has. Thanks Clark.
OhioDad (2493) - Hilliard, Ohio, USA - DEC 22, 2005
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
#900 - 12oz bottle via trade with Duane - Thanks Duane! - Pours black with a nice tan head that doesn’t stay long. Aroma is flat out outstanding. Nice vanilla, bourbon, chocolate, coffee, and some dark fruit. Flavor doesn’t disappoint either. Starts out with all of that barrel flavor, bourbon, vanilla, and some oak.. then the chocolate and mild coffee come to the forefront and are then swept away by the somewhat dry roasty finish. Palate is very smooth and I failed to find any alcohol flavor in this one as it was so well covered by the robustness and smoothness. A beautiful sipper and amazingly tasty. A great way to celebrate #900
TipsyMcStager (1139) - Calgary, Alberta, CANADA - DEC 21, 2005
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
intriguing vanilla aromas, port, vinous aromas, ripe fruit. Pours a reddish-brown, thin head. Fruit flavours, chocolate, some hops in the finish. Quite smooth. An interesting beer.