hackobock (3427) - Stockholm, SWEDEN - JUN 30, 2016
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
August 29, 2015. Bottle at home, received in a trade with AtlCarl, thanks!
Black with a small brown head. Aroma is roasted malts, notes of sweet and salty licorice, coffee, dark chocolate, toasted coconuts, light bourbon character and hints of vanilla. Taste is medium sweet, smooth roasted bitterness. Finish is roasted bitterness with dark chocolate, roasted coffee, some sweet caramel, licorice, vanilla and a light warming bourbon touch. Full bodied, creamy texture, soft carbonation.
Very nice, subtle barrel notes but the taste is well balanced.
jake65 (3413) - Meridian, Idaho, USA - APR 15, 2015
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle, Boise imperial stout tasting. My first taste of the night, this was a solid opener. Near black pour and small brown head. Nose is bourbon, espresso, and chocolate malt. Heavy roast and espresso, lighter in vanilla and some bourbon. It hints at woody, but overall very smooth.
jrob21 (3405) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - MAR 5, 2014
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
2012 from a trade a while back. Lots of bourbon and wood in the aroma. Bourbon comes through mostly in the flavor and adding on a little bit of vanilla. Dark fruit flavors. As it warms you get a bit more of the stout. Really nice smooth chocolate and roasty coffee malt. Cherry and berry fruit bursts late in the palate. A little too boozy but otherwise pretty nice.
pantanap (3366) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - AUG 12, 2010
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
multiple samples at MBSF....pours a rich smooth and creamy jet black pour with a hefty light khaki head... aroma of smooth sweet chocolate with a mild degree of bourbon barrel influence.... served at almost room temperature, just cooler, the flavors really shined with a creamy smooth chocolateness with vanilla and bourbon notes that assimilate in a seamless manner. somewhat resembles black note from what i can remember. great body and went down easy even on a 90+ degree day. best of the fest by far for me.
Beerlando (3342) - Orlando, Florida, USA - DEC 22, 2011
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
12 oz. silver wax dipped bottle, 2011 vintage. Dense, viscous, and fudgy looking, the nearly black body is almost impenetrable by light. This is the darkest beer Iíve seen in some time. An initially moderate head of light brown to mocha colored froth settles quickly to a smooth, swirly surface patch with a thick gathering of bubbles at the edges. After each sip, viscous, drippy legging recedes, giving way to small, wet spots of lace.
The nose is decadent, yet delectable. The depth to which dark chocolate fudge is portrayed here is difficult to convey. Brownies swirled with caramel and walnuts also come to mind. The barrel application is incredibly smooth and unobtrusive here. Itís not overly woody or even the least bit alcoholic. Instead, the barrel imparts velvety, creamy vanilla and hints of coconut macaroon. In short, this stuff smells pretty incredible.
Flavors show many of the same general elements, though they arenít quite as well integrated as they are in the nose. I mean, the dark, rich fudge and nutty, caramel-laden brownie are there in force, but the barrel is also considerably more prominent and woody. There are some bittersweet dark cacao notes that come across a little more biting and earthen, and a nip of booze is detectable. Donít get me wrong, itís still incredibly well done as barrel-aged imperial stouts go, but compared to the nose, there are a few minor shortfalls.
The palate is creamy and airy for a 10%, heavily sugared brew, lifted up by soft, pillowy carbonation. Though there are obviously a hefty amount of residual sugars here, the relatively dry yeast and perfect carbonation do a good job of keeping it in check, or at least ushering it out quickly. Whatís left is a lingering, mouth coating sensation equivalent to what it feels like to have just swallowed a shot of coconut cream...and the aftertaste isnít far off from that either.
Overall, this is an incredibly well done barrel aged beer. You can search high and low, near and far, and you wonít find many example better than this. I generally hate the style these days, but this brew reminded me that when things are on point, they can be absolutely delicious.
50belair (3341) - Florida, USA - DEC 21, 2011
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle, 750ml, 2010 vintage. Black pour with a small tan head. Bourbon and chocolate nose. Vinous with big cabernet, deep roasted malt, and bourbon notes. Good, but maybe not what the brewer intended.
SrSilliGose (3328) - pouring bus, New Brunswick, CANADA - MAY 1, 2012
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
shared by some nice fellow in line at DLD. thanks! bourbon addition worked quite well with this beer. body held up nicely. big, potent rich dark chocolate and chocolate mouse with some dry leather smoked out bourbon and vanilla. rich, heartwarming. pretty solid. better than expected.
Reynolds314 (3302) - Connecticut, USA - MAR 22, 2012
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
YES! This is a bourbon barrel aged imperial stout. Aroma was outrageous with loads of vanilla oak and roast. The taste is lucious and amazingly rich and medium sweet with a dry roasty finish. Want more.
mathieuc (3257) - Quťbec, Quebec, CANADA - JUN 23, 2015
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: JUN 24, 2015 Pours a dark dark brown with a small beige rim that leaves few lacing. Nose is of coconut, vanilla, rich caramel and chocolate. Taste is of chocolate, grapes, alcohol, vanilla and chocolate. Super oaky/barrel flavor, a bit too much for my taste. Body is full and carbonation soft. Alcohol is a bit hot. Good but not great, a bit rough.
auerbrau (3203) - Ithaca, New York, USA - MAR 17, 2012
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
12oz Bottle. Thanks so much Sean for sharing the rarity. Big bourbon and roast umami nose. Lots of vanilla and the cherry-pit-like aspect I attribute to the oak barrel. I always enjoy it when it shows up in the aroma. Tight, creamy, and complex. Not really and rough edges. I think the barrel presence is a little strong, but it works in there pretty well. The snappy, bittersweet roast edge is really satisfying. I think this is up there just behind the best of the best of barrel-aged imperial stouts. I appreciate the lack of sweetness and dry, sharp finish. Warming.