bu11zeye (11113) - Frisco (Dallas), Texas, USA - APR 6, 2012
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
(22oz bottle) Pours an opaque black body with a small beige head. Aroma of vanilla, roasted malt, nuts, raisins, bourbon, and chocolate. Flavor of caramel, roasted malt, brown sugar, bourbon, and chocolate.
KickInChalice (842) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - APR 2, 2012
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
From notes. Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a tulip.
The beer itself has a dark brown hue with lighter, transparent brown edges. A small tan head forms on the initial pour but fades away without really leaving any lace.
The 18 year Elijah Craig comes through in the nose first, like my experience with the other barrel aged Eclipse beers. Molasses, vanilla, and oak are strong as well, with chocolate and coffee behind.
The Elijah Craig is a little bit more nuanced in the flavor. Dark chocolate, roasted malt, and coffee start a fairly strong imperial stout flavor. As soon as it starts turning sweet with vanilla and molasses notes, the bourbon and oak dry the flavor out and prevent it from moving too far in that direction. The bourbon really carries through to the finish. Interestingly, when I first tasted the Eclipse beers, I thought the flavor of the beer was quite strong, with the barrel flavor adding further depth. Now I notice the barrel flavor and feel the underlying stout might leave a little bit on the table.
For the style, the body feels to be in the middle of the spectrum. The carbonation is on the light side, trying to be creamy and smooth, but it could use some more carbonation.
This is another solid Eclipse that I am glad to have tried.
I am curious whether people who have given this beer such a great score have sampled it side by side with the Eclipse - Elijah Craig 12 year. There is not that big of a difference.
MrChopin (2527) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - APR 2, 2012
2.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 10/20
dark sepia, ghost for a head.. Thin cream ring. Marshmallow nose, dirty nose is mud, like when I fell on the wet soccer field after getting nut-blasted in ’01. Anise too. Flavor is heavy burnt milk chocolate, earth, toasted marshmallow in the finish, equally as disappointing as limping off the field holding my junk being asked by coach "did it hit you in the balls or the shaft?"
Travlr (8002) - Washington, Washington DC, USA - APR 1, 2012
4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle courtesy of GT2, thanks! Very dark brown, almost black, bright white edge head. Aroma of perfume, vanilla, whiskey. Taste is very smooth and rich coffee with dark cocoa in it and very subtle port and bourbon. Very nice.
ryan (3185) - Beltsville, Maryland, USA - MAR 31, 2012
2.7 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
Sugary sweet molasses nose. Taste is grossly sweet, lots if molasses and brown sugar, light chocolate. Astringent finish. Not good.
GT2 (5664) - Riverslime, California, USA - MAR 31, 2012
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
651mL white wax thanks to MrLo. Good, thicker tan head atop thicker brune head. Sweet strawberry nose with super sweet brandy and milk chocolate. Taste is sweet, hot, heavy dark chocolate ganache. Palate is drier, bitter, intense. Not bad. I enjoyed this.
BeerandBlues2 (7421) - Hanover, Maryland, USA - MAR 31, 2012
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle shared by GT2. Pours opaque with a small, fizzy light tan head, short retention with light lacing. Aroma is dark chocolate, nutty and roast malt, whiskey and oak with dark fruity esters and earthy notes. Flavor is malt dominant, whiskey barrel, dark fruity esters, light hops and medium bitterness with a sweet finish. Full body, medium warmth and carbonation.
sonnycheeba (1923) - Federal Hill, Baltimore, Maryland, USA - MAR 31, 2012
3.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle. Pours opaque black with a trace of fizzy, tan head; short retention and no lacing. Aroma is scotch, dark chocolate, roasted malt, woody notes, dark fruit, and some earthy notes. Flavor is balanced malt and fruit esters with scotch undertones throughout; dry, ashy finish. Medium body and carbonation with high warmth.
oteyj (2114) - New Hampshire, USA - MAR 31, 2012
3.1 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Black pour with a sudsy tan head. Earthen dirt and caramel lead to vanilla bourbon and raisin. A bit cloying and lacking complexity. Medium body with abrasive carbonation. Not the best balance.
TheAlum (4295) - Lisle, Illinois, USA - MAR 31, 2012
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
22 oz bottle from West Lakeview Liquors (Chicago, IL). Thanks, Kristina. Shared with friends. Pours a rich blackish inky pour, a firm tannish head layer dies toa thicker ring, laces ok overall. Rich opaque and black. Aromas are a healthy barrel spirit, bourbon and oak, roast and toast. Mellow toffee, caramel, biscuits. Touches of coconut, vanilla, and fudge. Some healthy dry hops. Initial is fuller bodied offering healthy flavors, fudge and barrel. Caramel, toffee, and biscuits. Toast, gentle roast moves in with some firm warming spirit. Toffee, coconut, gentle Bourbon spirit grows up front and mellows out into the back. Firm dry hopping, barrel presence is rich and inviting, rich vanilla, coconut, and bourbon presence. Wow, tasty. Fudge, caramel, and biscuits. Toffee, cocoa, and dry richness. Barrel spirit. Finish is medium bodied, as these beers don’t get overly thick. Wow. Flavors are on here, complex, rich, with a lot going on without getting too rich and thick and overdone. Well done, Todd. With PVW, this is my favorite Imperial Eclipse to date.