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Sierra Nevada Barrel-Aged Narwhal Imperial Stout

overall
100
94
style
Serve in Snifter

bottled
common

on tap
common

Broad Distribution

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RATINGS: 135   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.93   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 387   ABV: 12.9%
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COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
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.


3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
bytemesis (3518) - Sunnyvale, California, USA - DEC 25, 2014
Bottle. Pours inky black, small dark brown head, dissipates fairly quickly, good lacing. Aroma is oaky bourbon, cocoa, wood dust. Flavor is light sweet, medium bitter, lots of barrel influence here; chocolate, bourbon, oak tannins. Medium body, a bit watery perhaps. Fairly hot.

4.4
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
duster1354 (10) - - DEC 25, 2014
Achieving a balance where all the flavors can be separated is alchemy. To tip the scale at 18% ABV and not just be all about the booze is art. Foremost a stout of great complexity.

4.3
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Hammy78 (779) - Dundas, Ontario, CANADA - DEC 24, 2014
Bottle from Consumer’s Beverages. Pours an opaque colour, about a finger of khaki head, some minor flecks of lacing. Nose is boozy and vanilla and bourbon, sweet malt, sugar. Great.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Tmoney99 (11090) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - DEC 24, 2014
Bottle. Poured a black color with an average frothy brown head that mostly lasted with good lacing. Moderate to heavy toasted sweet chocolate and vanilla wood alcohol aroma. Medium to heavy toasted chocolate malt flavor with a medium to heavy dark sweet and small alcohol bite finish of moderate to long duration. Full body with a smooth texture and flat carbonation. This is a standout beer.

4.1
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Beerman6686 (4704) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 23, 2014
This poured an almost jet black with a tan head. Aroma was oak, fudge, bitter chocolate, tar, and Smokey ashy character. Flavor was about what expected from the aroma, nice barrel character, but doesn’t cover up the big Smokey heavily roasted base beer. This reminds me of a less refined BA expedition

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Johnsense (856) - - DEC 23, 2014
Big black pour with a finger of head. Bourbon barrel prominent here, vanilla, roasted malt and wood in both aroma and taste. Coconut in the aftertaste. Very slight alcohol warming. Thick body.

3.7
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
badhack (348) - San Francisco, California, USA - DEC 23, 2014
Dark, foamy beer with lots of alcohol on the tongue. Dark malts, chocolate, cola, etc. Lots of barrel characteristics. Somewhat heavy palate.

4.1
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
phaleslu (6837) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - DEC 22, 2014
750 ml bottle shared by Tmoney99 - thanks again, Tom! Pours an opaque dark brown - looks nearly black, but we’re outside in the dark - with an inch of cascading tan head. Lovely. Initial notes are vanilla, cacao, dark chocolate, and toasted coconut, but it gets richer than sweeter as it warms, and the flavor brings more of the roasted malts, earthy hops, tobacco, and booze here. Also oak and toasted sugars. Medium-bodied, with medium carbonation and a somewhat sweet but more bitter and rich mouthfeel. Really nice barrel treatment to this rich, roasty, bitter imperial stout.

4.7
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
stevoj (2336) - Boise, Idaho, USA - DEC 22, 2014
Everything its reported to be, and more. Pitch black with beige\ruby foamy head. Nice smoky aroma, wood, roast malt, burnt toast, some alcohol that singes the nose hairs. Taste is a bit mellower, lots of alcohol warmth, more roastiness, lots of wood. A sipper...

4.7
   AROMA 10/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
Herfadore (1) - USA - DEC 22, 2014 does not count
I love this beer. I was planning on buying a couple of cases again this year until I saw that they had increased the price and gone to a four pack instead of a six pack.. WOW double greedy! I simply never want to support nor reward this type of wanton greed.... It’s good, it’s just not that good guys. IMO


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