MartinT (10037) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - JAN 31, 2005
Sample at XBF:ClarkVV (6839) - Boston, Massachusetts, USA - JAN 31, 2005
Light whisky heating up the peppery earth and soy sauce suggestion.
Thinner-bodied than the regular Smuttynose Impy, an oily soy/vinegary component ails the rotund chocolate and roastiness usually present. This barrel-aged edition is to me the perfect example of the fact that few seem to be able to do it without harming the beer. It thins the mouthfeel and overtakes most of what is interesting in the base beer, which is what I find disheartening. Sorry for the rant.
UPDATED: AUG 17, 2006 Draught @ EBF05. I was actually disappointed when they told me this was barrel-aged (it was not listed as barrel-aged in the festival guide), if that is any clue of how sick I am of barrel-aged beer. Rastacouere (6177) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - JAN 31, 2005
Deep brown/black pour, hazy and unfiltered as are all of the Big Beer Series beers. Little, fleeting tan head. Vinous notes mix with chocolate and then are aided by coconut and cedary wood to deliver a solid, if somewhat unoriginal aroma. Flavor begins with a burst of oily wood mixed with plenty of dark chocolate, lightly acidic roast and plenty of saltiness. Bourbon and oak notes coat the palate on the finish, but the alcohol and brute force of the heavily apparent barrel-aging, overwhelm what could be an interesting and not-over-the-top take on the style. Medium body, oily and slick, with only a glimpse of creaminess. Low carbonation. I will be seeking out the non-barrel aged version. I poured out my sample after a sip or two just so I could get in line for a more interesting beer.
Draft, EBF: Almost black,. Big coffee smell, mellow well contained oak puts this a bit above the standard impy for me. Toffee, roasted nuts, biscuity malt and salty hops work well enough thanks to subtle barrels all throughout. A shy alcohol kiss shines at the very end and sends you to sleep. Not very thick body, but sufficient, moderately carbonated. Diplomatic BA impy. tiggmtl (4544) - East York, Ontario, CANADA - FEB 1, 2005
Roasty and sweet with obvious woody character in the nose. Opaque black body is topped by by shy brown head that recedes to cover. Wood and chocolate are the main flavour components with a decent roasty bitterness. Feels thin in the mouth and the barrel-aged character seems to overwhelm the beer. Sampled at the Extreme Beer Festival 2005. OldGrowth (3474) - the Containment Area, North Carolina, USA - MAY 11, 2005
On tap @ Anam Kara. Good nose, viney, coffee, not much of the wood showing up. Nice clean reddish black color. Almost no head, little brownish beige cover that disappeared altogether. Bitter flavors, same as aromas with the whiskey/oak showing up, though mellow. Medium bodied, creamy mouthfeel, Roasty bitter finish. I like it, but I’m a tad biased with Smuttynose, Glad I swung by for this one.
Volgon (2763) - Manchester, New Hampshire, USA - DEC 30, 2005
Bottle aged about one year: black with no head, rich malts brown sugar wood and molasses, starts and ends sweet, with a rich aftertaste. Very drinkable for a barrel-aged beer. dirtymike (2016) - Manchester, New Hampshire, USA - JAN 28, 2006
Black in color with little to no head.Aroma of alcohol and dark fruit.Low evidance of carbonation.Woode and whiskey work nicelt, slightly sweet, highly drinkable. trevor211 (1681) - Seattle, Washington, USA - OCT 5, 2010
On tap at Rattle N Hum in New York. Pours the darkest cola brown possible without being a solid black. Little to no head. Lots of fruit in the aroma, with some brown sugar. Big bourbon in the flavor - oak and booze are predominant, finishing mostly with fruit. Some smoke at the very end. Nice, but very boozy! Holdwine (1237) - Beertimore, Maryland, USA - OCT 26, 2005
Lucky enough to sample from a keg aged in a Jack Daniels barrel. Wow. Dark black pour, instant whiskey nose along with great roasted maltiness. Only downside,if you aren’t a Jack fan. Alcohol is evident, but the rich malts overcome. Great beer. wnhay (722) - Princeton, New Jersey, USA - NOV 19, 2005
Black pour with a small tan head. Smell had whiskey, oak, roasted chocolate, coffee and port. Taste was really smooth but quite strong. The chocolate taste was really nice. The oak and whiskey were present but the balance was good. Mouthfeel was not real thick but I love chocolate and oak so I’ll give it a high score. Enough ranting. This beer was pretty good.