Nantahala Trail Magic Ale No. 1 (Barrel Aged Russian Imperial Stout)
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RATINGS: 39   MEAN: 3.85/5.0   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.77/5   SEASONAL: Series   IBU: 47   EST. CALORIES: 300   ABV: 10%
Our first Trail Magic Ale release is an Bourbon Barrel Aged Russian Imperial Stout. Along with our liberal use of roasted and caramel malts, we brewed it with local sorghum syrup and wildflower honey that gives this stout a unique character, while tying itís flavors to the Great Smoky Mountains.

Batch 1 (Trail Magic Ale No. 1) 9.8% - Jack Daniels barrels.
Batch 2 (Trail Magic Ale No. 4) 10% - Makerís Mark barrels. Batch 3 (Trail Magic Ale No. 7) 10% - Jack Daniels barrels.

GAManiac's rating

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
GAManiac (1944) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - AUG 10, 2012
750 cork and caged bottle, #0098. Thanks Dan! Pours extremely dark brown out of the bottle and is pretty close to black in the glass with a small thin mocha head. Aroma has roasted chocolate malts and cocoa powder but has an interesting sweetness imparted by the honey and sorghum syrup. Not getting a lot of barrel character at all. Taste is more of the same and, much like the aroma, doesnít have much bourbon barrel that I can taste. There is a sweet creamy character that must be due to the sorghum syrup and a bit of tingly spiciness from the honey. Finish is fairly roasty and starts to burn with alcohol after a few sips. Mouthfeel is interesting because it seems creamy and smooth but still lacks a little body. The syrup smooths things out but itís still a little light for an RIS. Iíve had little from Nantahala but I think this is a great start to the new Trail Magic program. I would love to see what a little more time in the barrel could have added to this one.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
Dr_Fellini (984) - Norfolk, Virginia, USA - SEP 24, 2015
No. 7. Bottle to glass. Pours a deep brown color with a thin light brown head. Roasted malts, hint of smoked whiskey, metallic. Not sure why they added sorghum. I try to avoid those gluten-free beers! haha

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 16/20
Ratman197 (11790) - Arvada, Colorado, USA - SEP 12, 2015
750 ml bottle poured a clear dark reddish browm with a small lasting brown head. Aromas of dark chocolate, bourbon, roasted malt, light coffee and a hint of oak. Palate was full bodied and smooth. Flavors of dark chocolate, vanilla, bourbon, roasted malt, coffee and light oak with a smooth lingering roasty chocolate finish.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
SpringsLicker (3289) - Tennessee, USA - JUN 2, 2015
March 2014 bottle from ífridge. Black with a tall, sticky tan head. Aroma has coffee, cocoa powder and nutty roast malts. The flavor follows the aroma. Just a touch of bourbon in the finish. Smooth silky mouthfeel. Nice one.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 13/20
wedgie9 (2528) - Nashville, Tennessee, USA - FEB 2, 2015
Tasted on 8/31/13 from a bottle. Pours dark brown with no head. The nose is full of roast with some molasses, and typical vanilla, caramel, and maple barrel treatment underlying. The flavor shows a bit more barrel sweetness, but is really dominated by charred roast. The body is full with zero carbonation and a long roasted finish.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
drfabulous (5233) - Lexington, Kentucky, USA - JAN 31, 2015
22 ounce bottle from Brusin Ales. Big black pour.Tan head. Creamy and chocolate with big bourbon and slightly sweet. Very good.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 10/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
LuckyDog (614) - - DEC 25, 2014
This is an astonishingly good beer. Itís got the usual imperial stout sweetness, but balanced by the barrel aging. Too bad its not easier to get.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
fluffy (2024) - St Petersburg, Florida, USA - AUG 18, 2014
kind wish i had gotten more of these, as i really liked this one. a pretty above average stout.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
Bacchus66 (56) - South Carolina, USA - JUL 25, 2014
Wow. Pours black as night with a thin dark head. Aromas of coffee and chocolate, thick, rich flavors. Needs a cigar! Savor this one, itís delicious.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
Cybercat (4291) - Georgia, USA - JUN 10, 2014
Comes out of the bottle looking like 10W30 and smelling like stoutie paradise. Dark, almost chocolaty tan head is quite thick, though not too persistent. Delightful aroma has notes of coffee, bourbon, chocolate and molasses. Flavor is sublime - this is what they drink in the Elysian Fields. It seems that a different note takes center stage with each sip: bourbon-soaked wood, quality coffee, semi-sweet chocolate, molasses with a hint of licorice. Mouthfeei is thick and smooth, could be a mite fizzier. Follow the trail to this magic!

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
cernjoh (180) - Ohio, USA - JUN 6, 2014
Poured from a March 2014 bottle into a snifter. Aroma is very subtle but is of dark chocolate, and booze. Appearance is like old engine oil with a small residual tan head. Taste is dark chocolate, vanilla, and smoke. Palate is nice and viscous. Overall a very god brew.

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