LilBeerDoctor (3302) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - JUN 4, 2009
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: AUG 28, 2009 Bottle at PPRBSG09. Pours black with a small tan head. Aroma of rich roasted malt, bourbon, bitter chocolate, and chocolate fudge. Flavor is bourbony upfront with a chocolatey finish. Mellow (alcohol-wise) for a barrel aged beer, which I appreciate, but I still think I prefer the original. Good beer still!
Update 8/29/09: I got to try another bottle of this beer and was disappointed. Not as complex, muddy bourbon, sweet roasted and charred malt. No chocolate notes really. So much more bland than before. I just feel blah about this beer overall now.
beerbill (3255) - Laurel, New York, USA - JUN 3, 2009
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
22 oz. bottle with thanks to Eyedrinkale for bringing this gem. I was thrilled to see it at the gathering! Pours black with a light brown head. Luscious aroma of bourbon, vanilla, chocolate and roasted malt. The flavor is roasted malt, bourbon, vanilla and chocolate with some bourbon whiskey emerging towards the finish. As I swirl the beer after each sip, it leaves lovely fig colored legs on the glass that linger. This is just a wonderful beer and I am very thankful for the opportunity to try it.
j12601 (6585) - Poughkeepsie, New York, USA - MAY 31, 2009
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle at PilsnerPeter’s Spring Gathering with a big thanks to Mike (EDA) for bringing this tasty thing. Pours a deep dark black with a light tan head. Bourbon, chocolate, roast malt, sweet plums, oak, and... even more chocolate on the nose. Nice thick body, with more chocolate and roast coming through before moving to a ridiculously long lasting finish featuring a nice roast bitterness, vanilla, and a bit more bourbon. Very well balanced, and remarkably smooth. One of the better beers of the day.
notalush (4588) - Denver, Colorado, USA - MAY 31, 2009
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Many thanks to EDA for breaking this out at Peter’s NY gathering - rich nose of cocoa, dark chocolate, vanilla, bourbon, light oaky tannins - smooth flavor, much more so than most BA impys - toasted oak and light bourbon are well-integrated with the roasted malts and chocolate character of the beer - quite restrained - I wasn’t a huge fan of the original, but the oak has smoothed this out nicely.
thewombat (112) - Brooklyn, New York, USA - MAY 31, 2009
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Super rich aroma- coffee and cake. Bitter smoked wood flavor, smells like alcohol, some burn in the flavor, spicy thick flavor. You can taste the whiskey barrels too. Great palate, really full bodied.
fredandboboflo (1570) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 31, 2009
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: SEP 20, 2009 Bottle, thanks to Eyedrinkale. Aroma of semisweet chocolate, smoke, roasted malt, vanilla, light bourbon, quite enticing. Flavor just goes insane with espresso, chocolate, mocha, vanilla, smooth bourbon, rich roasted malt, dark red fruit. Rich, decadent, silky smooth, simply velvet on the tongue. A masterpiece. 8-5-10-5-20.
Bottle from my secret santa. Not as remarkable as I remembered. Aroma has some sharp alcohol notes and far less of the rich roasted malt. Still has nice bourbon and vanilla notes, but little, or not as much as I’d like at least, to back them up. Flavor again has an alcohol astringency to go along with roasted notes, chocolate notes, and the barrel influence. Also much more wood than I got the first time, more tannic and less of the rich bourbon and vanilla characteristics. My negativity here is largely due to drawing a comparison with my original rating; I still enjoyed much of the beer. A real problem though was that it was showing far too much oxidation at this point in its lifespan, increasingly evident upon warming. This combined with the lack of rich malt presence has caused me to severely downgrade my rating and no longer consider it near the top of the style.
nolankowal (921) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - MAY 30, 2009
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bomber. Pours a viscous black with a thin mocha colored head. Aroma of bready roasted malt, vanilla, chocolate, dark fruits. Flavors of booze soaked dark fruits, bitter chocolate & coffee, faint earthy hops and a tinge off wood...bready sweet malt and licorice, coconut and vanilla as well. Thick body, coats the tounge...boozy, sweet, earthy bite in the front...sweet and smooth until another roasty bitter bit towards the long roasty finish. Quite rich and decadent, often times I find barrel aging can thin out what would normally be a thick brew...this however is not one of those times. Lots going on in the flavor/aroma without being cloying though I wouldn’t mind a bit more roasty character...perhaps a bit of smoke or just a bit more wood to dry out a bit of the sweet characteristics. This though is more of a personal preference than a gripe. Overall this is a fantastic BA impy stout and while I grow weary of lackluster BA projects, this one felt worthwhile pulling back some of the characteristics of the regular BORIS (which is a great brew, I just find it to be a bit much) and add that fun layer of boozey complexity without making a hot mess out of things. Spot on.
DMRz (230) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - MAY 28, 2009
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Pours an inky black with a trace of brown head. Chocolaty vanilla aromas with fresh barnyard and a hint of coffee. The flavor really jumps out of the glass with enticing sweet milk chocolate, cinnamon, raspberries, coffee, and a pleasant bitter finish that conceals the alcohol. Hoppin Frog has created one damn fine beer - this is why barrel aging is such a great thing.
RCL (2030) - Waltham, Massachusetts, USA - MAY 26, 2009
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Appearance is amazing, black with a dark brown head. Tight but packed aroma; charcoal, licorice, bourbon, vanilla. Flavor is sweet and delicious, near zero indication of alcohol. Super smooth. I could bathe in this.
badlizard (5540) - Berkeley, California, USA - MAY 26, 2009
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Had at Hophead22’s Imperial Stout Tasting. Thanks Tim. Dark black with almost no head. Strong chocolate and whiskey aroma. Big chocolate taste, candy sugar, and a sweet slightly whiskey and oak taste to the finish.