FlacoAlto (4147) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - MAR 6, 2010
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Sampled February 2010
A vigorous pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces an almost four-finger thick, richly browned head. The beer is very dark, almost perfectly black color that is quite opaque when held up to the light. The head manages to leave some spotty lacing on the sides of the glass as the head subsides. The aroma smells of vanillin and sweetened toasted coconut up front. This leads into a richly toasted malt character that leans towards barley husk notes, sweetened dark cocoa, and a cream laden, sweetened, French roast coffee drink. Interestingly enough this beer is not nearly as complex as I expected from a Bourbon Barrel aged Imperial Stout; I do like that this is very smooth and well integrated as the Bourbon character has not run rough-shod and hot over the aromatic profile.
The beer tastes quite sweet up front and finishes with a touch of Bourbon spice, acrid burnt malt, and a spicy carbonic bite that is a bit unexpected given that this isn’t highly carbonated. Flavors of vanillin interweave with rich toasted coconut notes and the dark, chocolate like malt character to make this seem quite a bit like a rich desert. The body is rich and viscous as it lingers fatly on the palate without being cloying. As the beer warms up it loses some of the sweetness that was almost too much initially. This helps to bring out a rich, savory malt character that brings out a sort of salty, sort of smoky, definitely umami character.
A quite enjoyable beer whose biggest flaw is that it is perhaps a bit simplistic. This definitely needs to be drunk on the warm side of cool where the savory quality becomes noticed and helps to boost the complexity. The most pleasant part of this beer is that it doesn’t get overwhelmed by the Bourbon Barrel aging, which is a huge relief to me.
Defreni (2997) - Husum, DENMARK - MAR 5, 2010
4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Flaske: Kulsort øl med et diskret lille skumhoved. Duft af kulsort øl, hvis man kan kalde det det. Diskret duft af whiskey, men heldigvis ikke overvældende. Smagen er sødlig af bourbon noter, men igen bliver den godt opvejet humlen og den mørke malt. Fin øl.
BeerFanDan17 (1080) - Brunswick, Maine, USA - MAR 4, 2010
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
This barrel aged BORIS was quite a treat! Flavors were incredible--dark chocolate, oak, hints of sweet milk chocolate, and malted milk.
brokensail (16053) - Dublin, California, USA - MAR 1, 2010
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
A: The pour is a thick and black with no head to speak of.
S: A great nose on this beer. A fair amount of whiskey, but nice notes of vanilla, graham cracker, chocolate, roasted malt and molasses. All things I enjoy smelling in a -bal aged stout.
T: While the nose was quite good, the flavor is only "good". Milk chocolate and whiskey are the first two flavors I pick up, followed by some vanilla and char.
M: I really enjoyed the creamy, viscous texture this beer has on the tongue. While there’s not much in carbonation, the beer avoids being too syrupy.
D: Certainly not a beer to sit down and drink a bomber of, but always an enjoyable experience, but perhaps a touch too sweet.
Zinister (1423) - Houston, Texas, USA - FEB 26, 2010
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Thanks to bleeng for this .01 better beer than the regular BORIS. Pours a dark obsidian black. with little head. Nose ashy whiskey with cocolate matls, roasted barley and hops. Flavor has that dark cherry chocolate taste with roasted malts, sugars and nice mouth feel. Very nice.
mickut (276) - Espoo, FINLAND - FEB 26, 2010
4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle, golden cap. Pours black with brown head. Taste is medium bitter, lightly sour, palate is full bodied and thick with a long, strong, burnt, alcoholic finish. Aromas are complex and have raisin, vanilla, wood, burnt malts, molasses, coffee flavors.
mjs (6459) - Helsinki, FINLAND - FEB 26, 2010
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
(Bottle, golden cap, at Pikkulintu) Poured black with small and light brown head. Aroma contained vanilla, roastedness, liquorice and mild burntness. Palate was medium bodied and dry with medium carbonation. Flavours were malts, vanilla, roastedness, hops, bitterness, saltiness, .liquorice, and burntness. Aftertaste contained vanilla, rostedness and bitterness
goldtwins (4320) - Nesconset, New York, USA - FEB 22, 2010
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Poured a lcear deep brown-black color with a thin off-white head. Sweet chocolate aroma. Roasted malt, vanilla and alcohol round it out. Chocolate flavor with vanilla just a hint of whiskey and roasty. Medium to full bodied.
hophead75 (2012) - Largo, Florida, USA - FEB 20, 2010
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
22 oz bottle. Black in color with a medium brown head, perfect appearance. Aroma is a nice mix of roast, light bourbon, chocolate, some light raisins. Taste is full bodied and rich, with chocolate, roast, some light bourbon, oak, fruit. Some caramel/toasted malt poking through and a moderate amount of bittering hops.
Glouglouburp (6103) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - FEB 17, 2010
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
In short: A kick-ass BA impy stout that doesn’t overdo the BA thing.
How: Bottle 22oz. Exact age unknown but probably about 6 months of age
The look: Near black body topped by a tan ring of foam
In long: Nose is moderately bourbon, vanilla notes, fudge, lots of cereals. The beer smells “big”. Taste is a whole lot of oily roasted cereals wrapped in dark caramel, vanilla, bourbon, light dark fruits notes, hops resin, some liquorice, a tiny bit chocolaty. Basically this is the standard array of flavours one can expect from the bourbon barrel aged impy stout. However this one really works because it manages to remain roasted, a little dry and somehow also managed to retain some hops bitterness. I suspect a re-blend which is just fine by me. We drank the regular BORIS just before opening this one. I’ve always liked the regular BORIS even if it is very harsh with a bitting grassy bitterness. This BA version is more round, more drinkable than the regular version. We all slightly preferred the BA version over the regular version. Crap, I used to crap on all Bourbon Barrel beer and now I’m finding more and more examples that I like. That makes me question myself and who I really am. Almost as much as when people call me “Nancy”.