PhillyBeer2112 (2601) - Oviedo, Florida, USA - AUG 4, 2008
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Thanks Santa! Hmmm, a bit unbalanced! Poured a deep black, dark brown head, 2 fingers thick. Aroma is all over the map, with oak, vanilla, coffee, milk chocolate, roasted malt, some resiny hop, and alcohol and swirling and competing for attention. The flavor is quite similar, very sweet and heavy. I think their regular Breakfast stout is a better beer, showcasing the coffee without the bourbon character smearing it all up.
IMtheOptimator (1162) - Bethel, Connecticut, USA - AUG 3, 2008
3.7 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Poured a thick black with a small semi-creamy brown head. Rich and complex aroma of lightly buttery bourbon, coffee and half and half, chocolate, fruits, and a bit of alcohol. A stoutish aroma with the depth of one from a good barley wine. Taste, for me, is comparatively disappointing. Lots of heavy alcohol and bittering hops dominate the palate, overshadowing virtually everything. If I strain, I maybe could find some roasted coffee and buttery bourbon, but it would probably be more confirmation bias than anything else. If I were to close my eyes, I probably wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between this and a similarly over-the-top bitter and alcoholic barley wine or double IPA. Normally this happens when I drink an imperial stout too cold, but that is hardly the case here. I decanted it at room temperature in a brandy snifter, and it still tastes like this. My only regret is that my fair and honest score, though below this beer’s average, doesn’t quite articulate my disappointment with this beer.
StefanSD (2218) - Lakeside, California, USA - AUG 1, 2008
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
12 oz bottle courtesy of secret Santa. Pours an opaque black with a small tan head. The aroma is strong with smoky spices, wood, bourbon, coffee and a touch of alcohol. Flavor is almost all bourbon, there is also dark biter chocolate and coffee rounding out the sides. The mouthfeel is smooth and creamy. The finish is medium in duration with lingering dark chocolate and whiskey. Overall: A superbly well crafted beer, my congrats to the guys in Grand Rapids.
Dedollewaitor (14339) - Odense, DENMARK - JUL 28, 2008
4.6 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
22oz. Trade with TheEpeeist. Thanks. Pours thick black with a small creamy dark brown head. Complex aroma - chocolate, vanilla, coffee, bourbon, sweetness, wood - "Im sold" & very impressed. Medium to low carbonation. Smooth, filling, oily, thick. Very light & harmless warmth from alcohol. Really incredible & the best beer Ive had in a long time!
Tweety (377) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - JUL 27, 2008
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Big thanks to Kevin and Karen for sharing this one. This one’s tasty, with lots of bourbon and the usual chocolate, coffee, vanilla trio that comes with these big stouts.
inkubus27 (269) - highland, Indiana, USA - JUL 26, 2008
3.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
I’m rating this from memory, and what I remember is that I really didn’t like this brew. So much that i traded off all i bought after i tried it. Aroma is loaded with bourbon. Flavor is completely over the top bourbon. Might as well just go grab an imperial stout and mix in half a glass of your favorite bourbon. It would come out exactly the same.
SudsMcDuff (6512) - .....Manchester United.........., Texas, USA - JUL 21, 2008
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: APR 2, 2015 big thank you to stumac for bringing this over!! ..Dispenses into the glass and you immediately smell lots of tar,bourbon, smoked wood, chocolate... complex from the get go .... wow, this has a big bold delicious complex flavour profile ... vanilla, bourbon,smoke flavours ... complex and fuckin wicked stuff ... a joy to drink .. lots of sweet alcohol but it works so wonderfully!! ..been wanting to try this for years and it didn’t disappoint...
2015 bottle .. My god this beer has changed. Very empty. Lacks the aggression and fullness. Sad really..
slimchill (1044) - Austin, Texas, USA - JUL 20, 2008
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle from dchmela (endless thanks!). Pours inky thick, completely black, forming a big head of bubbles that dissipate with a slip of the glass upward or downward in trails. The head has a ruby tint and laces astonishingly well. Aroma is complex and inviting, at times giving way mostly to bourbon and coffee, but then letting oak and vanilla seep in, only to be further intensified by fruit notes (cherries and raspberries). Mouthfeel is just right, thick but not heavy, light enough to give a perfect background to the massive depth of the beer. The flavor is just as complex and offers up much of the same, impressive and in perfect balance. Mildly bitter roastiness compliments alcoholic bourbon and chocolate/cherry sweetness. The flavors sweep across the tongue and leave behind only slight tinges of chocolate and coffee, an alcoholic heaviness, and the delightful sense of having experienced something very special. As the beer warms and the glass drains, the alcohol presence becomes more noticeable and takes away only slightly from the overall impression.
MartiniFiend (104) - Mount Horeb, Wisconsin, USA - JUL 14, 2008
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottle. Pours dark brown almost black with no head. Wood and smoke aroma also the borboun gives it a alchohol smell. Thick and creamy to the palate. Flavor starts out a mix between wood and smoke followed by a slight alcohol middle with a bitter finish.
mcbackus (758) - Merritt Island, Florida, USA - JUL 12, 2008
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
bottle: pours perfectly black with a small dark tan head. aroma is of bitter chocoalte and coacoa powder, small amount of coffee grounds and a good wiff of vanilla. the wiskey hints come out at the end and make me happy. the flavour is superb with great hits of the oak and wiskey that flows into the vanilla of the barrel and the grea chocolate then comes out as a bitter sweet treat. ths is followed by a great hint of espresso, the beer finishes fantasticly and goes down as easy as can be. awesome!