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Sierra Nevada Barrel-Aged Narwhal Imperial Stout

Serve in Snifter


on tap

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 359   WEIGHTED AVG: 4.01/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 387   ABV: 12.9%
Barrel-Aged Narwhal is our deliciously dark Imperial Stout aged in Kentucky bourbon barrels. Barrel aging is a strange science; it mellows some characteristics of the original beer while intensifying others. Narwhal’s aggressive roastiness has calmed, but the rich, chocolate-like malt backbone is brought to the fore. Black as midnight, this intense stout is complex with notes of cocoa and espresso balanced with hints of vanilla and toasted coconut from the oak casks. Nearly as rare as it’s nautical namesake, try Barrel-Aged Narwhal while you can because like the creature itself, it will soon dive into the depths and leave nary a trace behind.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
treign (21) - Bend, Oregon, USA - OCT 18, 2016
I’m a huge fan of Narwhal so this was a real treat. On tap at the Chico Brewpub. Pours pitch black with a thin dark head. Aroma of chocolate and roasted malts. Taste is a beautiful balance of beer and barrel flavor. Alcohol is definitely there but not at all overpowering. Delicious barrel aged stout.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
17Beer (228) - Connecticut, USA - OCT 15, 2016
Chocolate and coffee scents with a yeasty undercurrent. Pours dark black completely opaque. Tight tan head with tiny bubbles and good lacing. Malty sweet coffee tastes with a licorice and chalk lingering finish. Low carbonation.The alcohol is evident but doesn’t dominate. An very nice imperial stout. I hope they keep making it.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 18/20
ehaak26 (126) - - OCT 9, 2016
Draft in mini-snifter from HopCat. Pour is black, with very thin tan head. Aroma of vanilla and coffee, hint of chocolate. Booze from the barrel is nicely balanced.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
ChazMania (668) - Oceanside, California, USA - OCT 3, 2016
Liquid glory! Motor oil darkness with one finger dark full head. For 12.9%, this was seductive and smooth. Shared with my brother who thought it was one of the more outrageous beers he had ever tried. The barrel notes are not over the top, just a good hint of bourbon (not as strong as say Abyss).

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
5000 (6862) - Hardened Liver, Washington, USA - OCT 2, 2016
Bottle:   Black, moderate beige head, nice lacing.   Sweet roasted malt nose.   Light bourbon nose, soft graham cracker and vanilla.   Smooth on the tongue, very much Bourbon aged.   Sweet, roasty, dark chocolate, bourbon, with some alcohol on the backside.   Pretty tasty.   Surprisingly only a moderate body and mouthfeel.   Feels a bit young on the tongue, soft Bourbon, chocolate and roasted malts.   Young but smooth, chocolate, roasted malts and bourbon on the tongue.   Pretty tasty barrel aged stout I must say.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
smroush (222) - Michigan, USA - SEP 26, 2016
Aroma is complex - chocolate, bourbon, caramel, a bit of coffee, a little dried plum. Color is close to black; head is mall and light brown. Taste is sweet, though not overly so, with a generalized bitterness. The high ABV is quite apparent. Palate is full bodied; texture is creamy; carbonation average and finish is long with the bourbon prominent, the sweetness and alcohol also prominent, chocolate in the middle and dried plum at the end. Overall a very good Imperial Stout- plenty of complexity and interest. The bourbon is cleR but not totally dominate as in some bourbon barrel aged Stout’s.

   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Turtles (2074) - Stockholm, SWEDEN - SEP 17, 2016
750ml bottle from Systembolaget, vintage 2015. Pitch black with a medium size, dense, dark brown head, some lacing. Bourbon, vanilla and oak barrels up front in the aroma, espresso, roasted barley, soy sauce, licorice and some dark dried fruit. Chewy, oily and silky mouthfeel, full-bodied, mild carbonated. The taste has a lot of bourbon, vanilla and oak barrels early just like the aroma, followed by licorice, roasted coffee beans, fudge and dried fruit. Finishes warming and vinous, woody and dry. As I have this weak spot for bourbon, I love this, although it feels a bit unpolished and raw.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
steffenholm (2) - - SEP 10, 2016 does not count
For meget engelsk lakrids. skummet forsvinder hurtigt. Kraftig mørk sag. For meget engelsk lakrids. skummet forsvinder hurtigt. Kraftig mørk sag. ---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Mesjasz (1090) - Lodz, POLAND - AUG 28, 2016
W aromacie sporo bourbonu, beczki, wanilii i czekolady. W smaku słodkie i gorzkie, bardzo przyjemne ale jednak mógłby mieć więcej ciała.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
neongolden (1267) - Linköping, Sweden/Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - AUG 20, 2016
(750ml 2015 bottle from Systembolaget shared) Pours black with a fine dark tan head. Aroma of chocolate syrup, praline, toasted coconut, vanilla extract, bourbon, molasses. Flavour is really smooth, rather sweet and low on roast with bourbon notes to the fore. Raw sugar, toffee, slight molasses, whiskey and coke, sweet coconut, chocolate syrup. Light roast component and char at best, light oak too. Some alcohol heat in the back. Medium bodied, soft carb. Smooth, solid sipper that is easier to drink than its high sweetness might suggest.

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