illidurit (2146) - Petaluma, California, USA - JAN 30, 2010
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle courtesy bret27. Pours black as ink with a super-dark brown head, might even be darker than regular Zhukov. Aromas of chocolate cookies, oak, and molasses, with a bourbon character that doesn’t take over but rather complements everything else. Flavor is still very roasty and bitter but it’s toned down compared to the base beer, which is exactly what the base beer needed. Unsweetened chocolate, oak, smooth bourbon. Mouthfeel is still rather astringent. Thick and oily on the palate. A huge, huge beer.
Ibrew2or3 (6881) - Tempe, Arizona, USA - JAN 26, 2010
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
On tap at CCB at the mini grand opening. It pours inky void with forever mocha head. I mean I let this sit for over an hour before drinking and it still had plenty of foam left. The aroma has robust notes of bourbon, oak and a lighter amount of straight up bourbon booze. Well behind those barrel notes are dark roastiness and dark chocolate. The taste is rich and velvety and pervasively barrel forward for sure. There’s boozie bourbon, hints of vanilla and robust oak covering up mild background notes of dark velvety chocolate and dark roasted malts. It is hard to believe the barrel was able to overcome this much malt roastiness from this batch of Zhukov’s, but it did. Personally I’d prefer a bit less barrel time but this was a tasty experience.
HOPSHUNTER (742) - Tampa, Florida, USA - JAN 23, 2010
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Draft at gand opening of Cigar city tasting room. Poured near black with a tall, dense dark brown head. Nose is big in bourbon notes, also roasted malts, chocolate, toffee, and wood. Full body with a creamy, slightly oily or viscous mouth feel and a good amount of carbonation. Flavor is rich with roasted malt notes, lots of chocolate, and molasses, vanilla, wood, light coffee and a nice amount of Bourbon. Bourbon is pretty well balanced with the roasty malt flavors not overpowering at all. Finishes roasted with lingering bourbon and a touch of warming alcohol.
HonusWagner (1376) - Florida, USA - JAN 21, 2010
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Dark pour with a head that fades after a short period of time. Aroma is subdued bourbon with some cocoa and a lot of espresso. Flavor resembles normal Zhukov but substitutes bourbon where there were previously hops. The tradeoff is perhaps slightly tastier but less compelling. Palate is surprisingly much better than regular Zhukov, less sticky and more chewy.
kiefdog (1826) - Tampa, Florida, USA - JAN 18, 2010
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
On tap at CCB. Pours a sinister looking pitch black color with massive dark chocolate head that settles slowly and laces the glass. Aroma is bourbon, chocolate, roast, toffee, caramel, molasses, some slight smoky and woody notes. Flavor is sweet and roasty with notes of bourbon, burnt coffee, chocolate, cocoa, molasses, light earthy notes, light notes of floral hops in the background. Generally full body, creamy, silky mouthfeel and a roasted sweet malt finish. Not as much bourbon on this as I would have expected but an amazing beer.