Caskalefan (168) - Bellingham, Washington, USA - NOV 29, 2008
UPDATED: OCT 27, 2009 Old Bawdy is good, but with this masterpiece, Drew has arrived as a truly formidable Master Brewer.
Pitch-black pour with a generous tan head that dissipates to a firm ring after a few minutes. The nose is roasty, dark chocolate, coffee, and a hint of molasses, and the flavor continues this theme, but also reveals some dark fruit skins, a decided woodiness, although, despite a bit of vanilla ester, it seems almost more cedary than oaky, piney and citric esters from the hops,and a unique acidic quality that I haven’t tasted in another beer since I tried Guinness Foreign Extra Stout more than twenty five years ago.
The body is perhaps a bit thinner than it could be for such a big flavored stout, but I think this increases the drinkability in what otherwise might be a too mouth- coating experience.
The flavor starts out almost a bit mild, but by the finish, it has explored some pretty intense depths, and that finish is crazy-long, and immensely rich.
tturner (111) - , Washington, USA - DEC 5, 2008
Big Wood festival. subtle flavors compared to my other samplings of the night. coffee, spicy oak, i got nice fig flavors. improves as it warms. completely exceeded my high expectations. brilliant. damjadi (7) - Portland, Oregon, USA - DEC 12, 2008 does not count
Nice firm head with earthy/chocolaty aromas. Warm and woody flavors with the chocolate/bourbon notes caressing the tongue over a nice malt backbone. Wonderful mouthfeel and a smooth finish. An instant classic! JFParnell (70) - Washington, USA - NOV 18, 2014
I am usually not a big fan of Pike brews, but this one does it. They have achieved great beer status with this beer for sure. Ranks right up there as one of my favorites. dsagoas (9) - , Washington, USA - DEC 13, 2008 does not count
Great bourbon aroma. Exactly what I was looking for. Dark black, and maintained its head well. Beautiful bourbon vanilla flavor matched well the chocolaty roasty stout. On the palate, there was a little too much alcohol bite to get a 5, but still smooth enough to get a 4. Overall, one of the best bourbon barrel stouts I have had.
tourette (225) - Seattle, Washington, USA - SEP 2, 2013
2013 bomber. Unbelievable. This is the best beer Pike had ever made. Thick, rich, layered, complex stout. And very well balanced. They knocked this one out of the park.
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone Sonicdescent (384) - Donora, Pennsylvania, USA - AUG 22, 2009
I really need to keep better track of trades, I can’t recall who sent this, but whoever it was, cheers to you for this great extra.
Pours a quite beautiful deep brown, appearing black without being held to light. A nice tan head is also present.
The smell is just phenominal. Chocolate, coffee, vanilla, wood. Comes together in such a way as to be greater than the sum of it’s parts.
Taste follows scent with the wood a little more up front and a bitter chocolate/coffee bean aftertaste. Just fantastic and near perfection.
Mouth is full bodied and creamy with low to medium carbonation.
Drinkability is great, this goes down easy with nary a hint of its ABV. Highly recommended. mmmbeer (1425) - Austin, Texas, USA - DEC 5, 2009
22 oz. bottle served in shaker- mispoured and ended up with one finger of a solid black liquid and a solid 4 inch foamy tanish brown head that refused to leave, hearty lacing. Medium carbonation, aroma of oak, vanilla, dark roasted malt, and majickal beer goodness. Hits the mouth with a hearty and heavy body, malt was masterfully roasted- damn near perfect, smoke, oak, and dark chocolate in the middle, finish has hearty lingering with vanilla, cream, and the warmth that comes from the color black. Very creamy throughout, and I can’t notice the alcohol level at all. Now get that finger up, wave it around... HOME RUN!!! daknole (11049) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - AUG 24, 2009
Bottle. Dark brown pour, light brown head. Aroma is very toasty and full of chocolate, bourbon, vanilla and toasted oak. Flavor is quite roasty and a bit dry. Lots of good bourbon, chocolate, vanilla and oak. Damn nice beer here. trevor211 (1681) - Seattle, Washington, USA - NOV 29, 2008
UPDATED: NOV 20, 2009 Pours black - no transparency - but not the black hole that some impys do. The large mocha head lingers for a while. The aroma is of sweet chocolate, and lots of it. Also coffee and molasses, but mostly dark, roasty chocolate. Subtle hops are also present, lending a slightly piney aftertaste. This brew is wonderfully smooth, with flavor notes of velvety chocolate, roasty malts and freshly ground coffee. It’s a bit thinner than I’d like - I want a stout this big to be syrupy while remaining clean... this is just a smidge thinner. It’s clean and smooth, but not as dry as I’d normally prefer, either. Still - the aroma and flavor are wonderful, and this is a *fantastic* beer that surpassed its (relatively high) expectations.