maltman53 (371) - Corrales, New Mexico, USA - NOV 27, 2014
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Tap@Brewery pours coffee-black. Barrel aging has tamed Narwhal’s aggressive roastiness, but the rich, chocolate-like malt backbone is brought to the fore. Overall, all that you like in the non-barrel aged Narwhat but deeper chocolate notes.
jcartamdg (2052) - Spring Hill, Florida, USA - NOV 27, 2014
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours jet black with a thin offwhite head. Aroma of bourbon, oak, chocolate and roast. Taste is bourbon, chocolate, alcohol heat, coffee, vanilla and oak. Nice balance, a bit hot but that’s expected given the style
TomDecapolis (4525) - Milton, Delaware, USA - NOV 27, 2014
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Pours a deep black with a medium bubbly tan head. Aroma of tart cherry, dark chocolate, vanilla, oak, light bourbon notes and caramel. Flavor of dark chocolate, tart cherries, vanilla, bourbon, oak and cocoa.
GothGargoyle (1374) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - NOV 26, 2014
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: NOV 27, 2014 Black with a good beige head. Aroma is bourbon, chocolate, vanilla, dates, fig. Full bodied, slightly oily mouthfeel, somewhat sweet on the palate. Taste is bourbon, vanilla, coffee, chocolate, figs, caramel, chocolate.
davey101 (694) - Connecticut, USA - NOV 26, 2014
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
750 ml into a tulip. Pours pitch black with a finger of tan foam that dies down to some edging. Nose is very barrel forward. Oak and vanilla drenched chocolate. Light fusel heat. Flavor is chocolate followed by a hugely mellow wave of vanilla. A touch of coconut and bitter roast but this is one smooth beer. A bit pricey but this is a damn impressive beer from Sierra. Not quite BCBS or Parabola level but it’s close.
matlev76 (20) - Ontario, CANADA - NOV 24, 2014
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
peteinSD (1394) - San Diego, California, USA - NOV 24, 2014
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle. Black pour with a large froth of dark tan foam. Relatively thin bourbon with vanilla undertones and pine bitterness through the finish on the aroma. Semi-harsh bourbon up front on the taste with fudge, bitter chocolate, light roast, alcohol spice (as well as some heat), and hop bitterness. Coating mouthfeel. Pretty good.
ACHops (736) - Seattle, Washington, USA - NOV 24, 2014
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
750 ml bomber, served in a chalice. Pours thick inky brownish black with a thick mocha head that laces well. Aroma is big rich milk chocolate, roasty dark malt, molasses, mild espresso, port, bourbon, a hint of coconut... whoa. Not much oak but some leather and barrel-aged notes as well. Taste is similar although not quite as diverse or rich as the nose: dark roasty malt, some vanilla, huge cocoa and baking chocolate flavor mid-palate. The description is spot on: regular Narwhal is dominated by the roast, this is much better balanced, less dry, with a rich chocolate note dominating the roast. Incredibly smooth mouthfeel. Very light alcohol heat on the finish, but otherwise the 13% abv is well hidden. I’m sure this is young for this beer, and it will improve with age. A bit pricey at $20 a bottle, but quite promising.
ineedbeer (839) - Oakland, California, USA - NOV 23, 2014
4.1 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Poured from a 750 ml bottle.
Aroma is full of rich chocolate notes with lighter coffee and faint roast. Hints of tobacco and leather. Light vanilla and coconut with some sweet bourbon notes and faint oak. Not super bourbon forward.
Pours black with a small, fairly thin, dark mocha head that sticks around on the edges for quite some time. Light lacing and fairly long legs.
Flavor is moderately sweet with lots of chocolate character. Medium light roasted coffee bean character. Light tobacco and leather with hints of dark fruit and smoke. More bourbon than in the aroma with fainter vanilla and coconut. Medium light alcohol spice in the finish. More dark fruit and bourbon as it warms. Moderate bitterness.
Mouthfeel is full bodied and fairly silky with medium low carbonation. Low, but slightly present roast astringency and medium low alcohol warmth.
Overall, a very nice, big stout with a lot of malt and barrel character with fairly clean yeast. The aroma is really nice, bit I fill the flavor did not quite match it. Nice mouthfeel but a bit of astringency from the roast.
Dansrc51 (46) - Eugene, Oregon, USA - NOV 22, 2014
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
Yep, they knocked it out of the park with this one. The barrel aging does not over power the beer, but compliments it. excellent