GAManiac (1944) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - AUG 14, 2010
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
750mL yellow-wax bottle from a super generous FL BA.
Pours a viscous oily black with very little carbonation - just a collection of brown bubbles around the edges. It does leave some brownish legs along the sides, almost tinting the glass a bit.
The aroma is complex and fantastic. Itís all in there - bourbon, vanilla, cocoa powder, charred black malts, oak, tobacco. I mean, itís just a massive nose.
The taste doesnít disappoint either. The burnt malt character is even more dominant than in the aroma. There is bitter chocolate, espresso and dark fruits. The barrel character hits hard in the finish and the bourbon especially burns going down.
The mouthfeel is where this one falls short of excellent as itís hardly carbonated at all. I had a regular 2010 Zhukov last week and it had the same issue. It doesnít completely take away from the beer but does affect the overall impression.
This is a massive, heavily charred impy stout that has a solid but not overpowering barrel character. If the carbonation had been a bit better this one would be a world class beer. Itís still an excellent beer.
zathrus13 (1684) - Mount Laurel, New Jersey, USA - AUG 5, 2010
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Rating 1400. Bottle, thanks Matt. Pours dark brown/black, with a slight brown head. Aroma is bourbon, dark fruit, brandy, roasted malt, molasses, and a bit of smoke. Flavor is brandy, bourbon, dark fruit, roasted malt, molasses, caramel, and some alcohol. Start sweet and ends somewhat dry and a little bitter. Body is not as thick as I expected or as it looked like when I poured it. Great stuff.
mufasa (11) - USA - AUG 4, 2010
4.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
This was a fantastic beer. I could not imagine it being any better. Pours pitch black with no head. I love the complexity of this beer, my palate was going crazy with everything going on with this. I canít wait to try my second bottle once it ages a little more.
craftbeerdesign (2138) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - AUG 1, 2010
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
UPDATED: NOV 22, 2010 tasting on 7/30/10. pitch black pour with no head. I get a lot of the brandy barrel throughout this one - the bourbon barrel takes a backseat. dark fruit, chocolate, spice and brandy nose. big round body with lots of spice, roasted malts, sweet dark fruits, chocolate, light coffee and brandy. somewhat hot finish with more roast and a touch of the barrels. great barrel blend of an outstanding base beer.
shp555 (2024) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - JUL 30, 2010
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Pours a jet black color with no head. Aroma is fruity, jam, oak, vanilla, grape, and toast. Flavor is caramel, sweet chocolate, coffee, brandy, oak, vanilla, and a bitter roast finish.
dchmela (2539) - Orlando, Florida, USA - JUL 30, 2010
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Thanks to GOT for making me stay and try this. Big black pour with little carbonation. The bourbon barrel takes over a lot of the aroma, with some hints of chocolate. Oak, vanilla, chocolate, soy all competing in the taste. Barrel notes just screaming all over the place. Damn good brew.
redlight (2303) - Orlando, Florida, USA - JUL 29, 2010
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: JUL 30, 2010 Shared by godofthunder. Huge vanilla aroma with figs and dates. Pours murky black. Rich brandy flavors plum and figs followed by bitter dark chocolate, dark raisins and wood flavors run throughout. Excellent!
GodOfThunder (1243) - Orlando, Florida, USA - JUL 29, 2010
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: AUG 27, 2010 Bottle. Pours a still oily black. Low carbonation. Aroma of sweet caramel from the apple brandy and whiskey. Mouthfeel has thinned out with the liquor but is still smooth. Flavor of caramel and booze, without being too sweet. The best part is the finish. Smoke, peat, chocolate malts and more caramel linger in the mouth. I donít know where the peat comes from in the beer, but it is great. Uber-dry finish, too. Awesome.
MeadMe (1219) - Riverview, Florida, USA - JUL 27, 2010
4.7 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
Sampled several times pre release, Thanks Joey.
A: Pours a nice rich deep black hue with a small tan head. No real retention or lace here.
S: Wonderful rich deep aromas. Tons of barrel here. The apple brandy really sticks out with notes of the oaky bourbon barrel as well. Very rich and earthy. Lots of roast, smoke, and chocolate. Coffee is there with hints of asphalt and dark fruits.
T: Not as bold as the flavor but still reallly good. Loads of barrel goodness. The rich brandy plans well off the oaky bourbon. Tons of charred malt with hints of dark fruit and booze filled chocolate candy.
M: Rich and thick, low on the carbonation when I tried it (as it was bottle conditioning). Lack of carbonation does not hurt at all though. Light carbonation is actually pretty nice here.
D: Not the most drinkable, but very sippable which is how you should rate a beer of this style.
gkost (1714) - Tampa, Florida, USA - JUL 26, 2010
4.8 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Bottle. Poured pitch black, oily. Nose was huge bourbon, smoke, coffee, dark chocolate, earth. Flavor was thick roasted malt, coffee, chocolate, hints of smoke, big smooth bourbon and brandy, warming booze. This is truly a treat.