5000 (6300) - Hardened Liver, Washington, USA - SEP 22, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle pours opaque black, medium frothy tannish head, with fairly sticky lacing. Sweet Bourbon, Vanilla, and slight Oak on the nose. Mmm.... smells delicious. Wonderful combination of Chocolate, Bourbon, and Vanilla on first sip. Slight alcohol tinge, but its very subtle. Medium body and mouthfeel. Not as heavy as I would have thought, but I’m not complaining. Finishes with a smooth Bourbon & Vanilla flavor, along with roasted malts, Coffee, and Chocolate. Flavor lingers long after finish. Wonderful beer this is!   It has the right amount of Bourbon in the aroma and flavor. Thanks goes out to hopscotch for the trade!
omhper (19381) - Tyresö, SWEDEN - SEP 20, 2004
3.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottled. Very black, firm brownish head. Strong wood aroma. Sweet with notes of vanilla. licorice and coffee. Extreme oak barrel flavour going like a bulldozer across other flavours diminishing them to gravel. I very much like oak barrel beers, but this beer has no balance whatsoever. Interesting as a prototypical barrel aged beer, but leaves a lot of room for improvement.
JoeM500 (1905) - Crown Point, Indiana, USA - SEP 19, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Wow! Had this side by side with Old Heathen. Certainly, I suggest you do the same. Pitch black with strong nose of vanilla and firewood, hints of chocolate. Bigger bodied and much varied taste, this one is rich with chocolate, coffee and vanilla. Some hints of pear and apple as well. "Roasty" doesn’t do this justice, its dry and peaty at the finish with vanilla sneaking back in the aftertaste. Alcohol is well masked by the massive malt flavors! Yum!
apoptosis (1317) - Denver, Colorado, USA - SEP 19, 2004
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Based on notalush’s rating, this sounds like a very interesting concoction. No head on an opaquely black body. Thickly sweet molasses aroma, along with the bourbon. It smells sweet. The beer is a little astringent, though, and not quite as rich or heavy as I expect from an Imperial Stout. The finish is thin, but the flavor is pretty good. Such an interesting idea for a beer, but I’m not sure it works for me.
notalush (4859) - Denver, Colorado, USA - SEP 19, 2004
3.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Pitch black color, with small, quickly vanishing, dark tan head - warm aroma, dominated by bourbon (I love bourbon so this is a plus for me), but brown sugar, vanilla and raisins make things interesting - far too thin-bodied for an imperial, but the flavor is good - very low carbonation - notes of vanilla and bourbon are abundant in the flavor, but oak, chocolate, a bit of coffee, a touch of bitterness, and a hint of caramel serve to complicate things a bit - finish falls apart a bit, leaving nothing much but bitterness and a slight whiskey flavor - I was expecting a lot more from this - yes, it’s good, but a bit lopsided and clumsy.
IPFreely (1470) - Sanborn, New York, USA - SEP 19, 2004
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Very deep color, nearly opaque, thin brown head that lasts with good lacing. Full aroma, noticible elements from the barrel- vanilla, some whisky, and some oak. Also plenty of caramel, some smoke, roasty malts and a bit of chocolate. Slick palate, almost oily but still with some carbonation activity. Sweet, full, alcohol is covered up pretty well. Very tasty, I would definitely drink again.
OldGrowth (2670) - North Carolina, USA - SEP 14, 2004
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottle, from Julio’s. Good nose, Whiskey, burgundy wiine. Chocolate, coconut, maybe vanilla or butterrum. Nice head, faded quickly though. Reddish/purpleish black color. No light gets through.Swwet and sour flavors. Whiskey. chocolate, coffee mainly for flavors. Thin body for an Imperial stout. Coffee/ whiskey on finish. Whiskey dominates. just a ok stout with whiskey flavors.
guzzler67 (1503) - Hanover, Maryland, USA - SEP 14, 2004
4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Distinct oak/woody aroma with hints of vanilla, whiskey and coffee. Good lacing from an average head over a nearly black, red rimmed appearance. Full-bodied flavor with chocolate in the taste. Fairly sweet and malty. Smooth, moderately carbonated. Modest hoppiness with a long finish.
TAR (2497) - Lafayette, Colorado, USA - SEP 14, 2004
3.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Penetrable obsidian with a bronze edge. Completely dwindling tan fizz. Fragrant whiskey aromatics teamed with dark chocolate, medicine, and caramel. Melted plastic, toasted wood, coconut, and sharp alcohol suggestions. Fizzy pricks of carbonation. Watery and dull body. Lifeless gritty malt presence couples with grain alcohol flavors and a flash of dried plum acidity. Timid notes of espresso and black malt lie buried beneath the alcohol. Lack of bready/caramel malt lushness fails to quell the sharp tannic zip. Somewhat astringent, to boot, with a clashing mix of black malts and firm wood. Ends with seared sugars from the bourbon remnants, along with black chocolate and toasted oak, which tries to dry it out. Falls apart at room temperature, unleashing a fury of vaporous alcohol, which suppresses the burnt caramel and cottony roast. Phew…as if the non-oaked He athen wasn’t lame enough, along comes its ill-mannered brother. Other than possessing some [run-of-the-mill] Imperial flavors (vinous, dark chocolate, black malt, etc.), this is nothing but a jumbled alcoholic mess, showing very little finesse or restraint, especially considering its low abv for the style. Throwing a beer in a bourbon cask doesn’t automatically yield magic, though most here would argue. Does have a respectable aroma, though.
humulus (339) - Salem, Missouri, USA - SEP 12, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Yes sir! The oaken barrel is certainly present. Quercus maximus with a bourbon kick. The beer itself is dark, deep and very robust yet mellow smooth with chocolate milk ease and sweetness. Bourbon less dominating than others of this persuasion. Nice burnt brown head, thick liquid with deep dark "Special Dark" chocolate notes. Very vanilla. Deep and dark like a rich forest of flavor and intrique. Drink deep and embibe in the sinful nectar that is this beverage.