Drake (7940) - Free Union, Virginia, USA - FEB 25, 2012
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Draft at Brewvival 2012. Pours pitch black with a large creamy tan head. Good head retention. Aroma of chocolate, roasted malts, raisin and whisky. The taste is roasted malts, chocolate, raisin, whisky, cocoa, caramel and a hoppy finish. Full bodied. Very nice.
Brigadier (2830) - Clevelandish, Ohio, USA - OCT 26, 2011
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
The highlight of Cleveland Beer Week for me was the chance to try this elusive beer. Right up there with barrel aged versions of Dark Lord and Bourbon County Stout it ranks as a beer that everyone should try at least once. I think I might like regular RIS slightly better but it is a close call.
Aroma / Appearance - The heavy black body sits wearily at the bottom of the glass. A lively brown head imbues a good contrast as I wait for the pour to warm from 40 degrees to room temperature. Vanilla, chocolate, oak, malt, and cocoa nibs waft effortlessly towards the senses. Time has mellowed the base beer somewhat though the aging process has not produced a bourbon bomb. Anise adds some additional sweetness around the edges.
Flavor / Palate - Fresh coffee, malt, dark chocolate drizzled over a handful of licorice hard candy, and vanilla alternate the spotlight. The oak aging is soft around the edges and plays nicely with the other flavors. While it is impossible to mask an 11% ABV completely this is so smooth that it sneaks up on you only at the last minute. A world class release, I would expect no less from Stone given their track record.
bittermestupid (247) - Canton, Ohio, USA - OCT 21, 2011
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
2008 in Heaven Hill barrels. On draft at Lizardville for Cleveland Beer Week. Pours black with a nice thick mocha head and some great lacing. Coffee, bourbon, chocolate, toffee, vanilla are up front on the nose. I pick up some marshmellow, licorice and leather as well. What a nose on this beer. Bourbon upfront, cocoa, coffee, licorice, vanilla, with raisin and dates come through nicely in the taste. Thick and coating on the palate with a long dark roasted coffee finish and notes of bourbon.
wchesser (1003) - Denver, Colorado, USA - OCT 16, 2011
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Stranahanís Whiskey Barrel Aged on tap at Rackhouse Pub, Denver.
No head. Dark black opaque. Lots of bourbon and oak vanilla notes, a bit of roasted dark malt. Very well balanced. Not a lot of the stout shows through unfortunately, but the bourbon doesnít overwhelm. Stout carries it well, but isnít strong enough to represent itself equally. Alcohol dangerously well integrated. Delicious beer. Had it with a whiskey bbq chicken sandwich with bacon-good pairing, but this would be just as good with a chocolate dessert.
onceblind (3672) - Denver, Colorado, USA - OCT 13, 2011
3.8 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
On tap at The Rackhouse, Denver, 2011 GABF. Aged in Stranahans. Very dark black with no head. Nice big aroma of chocolate, whiskey, oak, vanilla, molasses, and more chocolaty vanilla. Very smooth uncarbonated body, a little too much so. Big boozy overtones of whiskey and oak, with a sweet background of heavy roasted black malts, chocolate, vanilla, and more booze on the back of the throat. No nuance, all pizzazz. But in all, not too shabby.
NielsenRatings (8273) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - SEP 30, 2011
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 12/20
Denver Rare Beer Tasting. Stranahans barrels. Black appearance with a tiny, dark brown head. Sweet caramel, toffee, whiskey, oak, vanilla, dark chocolate malty aroma. Low carbonation. Roasty dark chocolate, caramel, toffee, vanilla, woody, whiskey flavor. Iím not too impressed.
Tmoney99 (10076) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - SEP 11, 2011
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Growler sample at JOís. Poured a black color with a minnimal frothy brown head that diminished with minimal lacing. Moderate to heavy toasted chocolate, coffee and wood bourbon aroma. Medium to heavy bourbon sweet roasted black coffee malty flavor with a heavy bittersweet and small alcohol bite finish of moderate to long duration. Full body with a smooth texture and flat carbonation. This is a standout beer with some age.
DavoleBomb (1467) - Pennsylvania, USA - SEP 9, 2011
3.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Had this on the eve of the August 27th JOís release. Big thanks to Jason for sharing this. 08 vintage from growler. ~4 oz from a tasting snifter.
3.5 A: Black. Pour yielded no head.
4.5 S: The barrel aging is done extremely well. The bourbon portion is perfect. Incredibly smooth with leather, melon, prune, and plum. However, the underlying stout canít stand tall alongside. Some chocolate and roast, but does not seem to have the subtleties that the regular has at this age. Still, bourbon forward or not, smells delicious.
3.5 T: I have no idea where the Stone IRS went. This tastes a bit like watered down bourbon rather than a bourbon enhanced stout. Thereís just a little chocolate and a little roast. However, the bourbon itself makes this still taste great. Leather, melon, prune, and plum. Alcohol is very well hidden.
3.5 M: Medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Could be creamier though.
3.5 D: Decent, but stout that canít stand tall above barrel treatments should not be put into barrels. Iím completely shocked that Stone IRS is one of these.
Serving type: growler
Reviewed on: 08-31-2011 23:11:14
Dogbrick (7243) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - AUG 24, 2011
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Sample on Day 3 of the Aces & Ales Strong Beer Festival on 08/14/2011. The beer is a brownish-black color with a thin tan head that evaporates to an outer ring quickly. Spots and strings of lacing on the glass. Aroma of bourbon, roasted malt and cocoa. Medium to full body with a boozy character and flavors of dark malts, bittersweet chocolate and vanilla. The finish is oaky bourbon with a malty aftertaste. Good beer throughout.
dbarnold (1125) - Bethesda, Maryland, USA - JUL 27, 2011
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
This one left me dissappionted...looks and smells great, but was lighter than normal IRS and had lost too much ofo itís character. No hops left. Tasted like a chocolate bourbon bar and not much else. I like bourbon barreled stuff generally, but this was had waited too long.