joeneugs (2576) - Livermore, California, USA - DEC 24, 2011
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
It pours a dark cola brown with a tan/orangy head. The aroma is an intense bourbon blast with alcohol, vanilla, caramel, raisins, plums and chocolate. Not as much roasted malt and more fruit forward. The flavor was a tiny bit of a letdown compared to the awesome aroma. It had delicious notes of bourbon, vanilla and some sweet caramel with hints of dark fruitness but it was a bit overly sweet lacking a second level of depth. Lots of sugary cola. There is a bit of roasted malt in the finish but not enough for my liking. The body is not as big as some stouts but very oily on the palate. Overall, this was a great beer. I loved the massive bourbon flavors, but the beer itself lacked the complexity of a world class imperial stout.
nickd717 (3400) - San Francisco, California, USA - DEC 22, 2011
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Thanks to largadeer for sharing a pour from his bottle. Very dark brown in color, but letting a tiny bit of light through. Not black. A small tan head sits on top and fades to a bubbly ring. The aroma is a nostril assault of awesomeness. Big rich dark and milk chocolate, mild roast, premium quality bourbon, oak, vanilla, and black cherry. The flavor has an insane complexity to it, and then on the finish it just gets better. All the amazing flavors that almost any past Eclipse has had - sweet chocolate, roast, toffee, dark fruit, vanilla, oak, and bourbon - incredibly balanced and tasty. Intensifies as it sits in your mouth. Medium-full bodied and incredibly smooth on the palate with soft carbonation. Unbe-mother-effing-lievable beer. Dude.
socaltay (204) - Ventura, California, USA - DEC 21, 2011
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: DEC 25, 2011 Has a very nice, balanced flavor that is incredibly drinkable. Alcohol is listed as 9.5% on the label not 10%. The whiskey notes come through very nicely. I tasted this is a "horizontal" with all the versions released this year and it is amazing to see how each barrel imparts its flavors on the base beer.
dcschiller (2154) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - DEC 21, 2011
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
(On draught at fiftyfifty!). Pours near black with khaki head. Aroma is bourbon, vanilla, coconut. Taste is sweet with lots of barrel characteristics. Full bodied with a sticky texture. Superb!
MattH (578) - California, USA - DEC 17, 2011
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
Tap. Black pour. No head. Strong aroma of bourbon. Taste is pleasantly sweet, a little like port. I also got flavors of dark cherry, vanilla, oak, and dark malts. The body is heavy. This beer is definitely a sipper.
BMan1113VR (7694) - Los Angeles, California, USA - DEC 17, 2011
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
2011 bottle 4156 thank to billshmeinke alongside a glass of the EC18 Bourbon and a bottle of the 2008 Pappy Van Winkle Eclipse and the 2011 Buffalo Trace Eclipse. Also sampled on tap. Pours with a pitch black body and a lasting tan head with good lace. Aromas are rich, cola, almond, nutty, vanilla, dark fruits, vanilla and fudge. Very rich and decadent. Medium vanillin and oak with rich brown sugar notes. Very refined. Flavors are of vanilla, cola, dates, tannin to balance, fudgy, light smoke, currants. Full bodied and creamy with lasting raisinated flavors. Really, really good! Better than the 2008 Pappy Eclipse at this point. A lot better!
bigabe (194) - California, USA - DEC 10, 2011
5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
Wow. Wow... oh wow. Aroma is perfect sweet malts, chocolate, honey, berries, and a finish of oak and a bourbon burn. Taste is just the same... love it when that happens. A perfect balance of toasty malts, chocolates, berry sweetness, and a WONDERFUL, but not overpowering bourbon note on the finish. Texture is thick and almost oily... the color is pitch goddamn black with a thick, frothy mocha head. Another 5.0, for sure. This beer is magical.