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Bourbon Barrel Aged Stout - Foothills Brewing Company - Downtown Brewpub

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Bourbon Barrel Aged Stout
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37 Reviews
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Reviews: 37
Hads: 129
Avg: 4.15
pDev: 9.64%
Wants: 35
Gots: 14 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Foothills Brewing Company - Downtown Brewpub visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  7.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: LauraAlberts on 07-02-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 37 | Hads: 129
Photo of Onenote81
4.14/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

In celebration of "craft beer week," Foothills decided to pull out this big boy again. The bartender told me that this was aged in barrels that had previously aged another beer.

This came out a muddy brown/black. Not as dark as I expected. No head at all. No lace. Big vanilla scents in this one. Some oak, bourbon, and a bit of toasted brown sugar. The body is slightly crisp, maybe a bit too much. Could be a little creamier IMO.

The bourbon notes are toned down a bit as these barrels had been previously used. I like that. The bourbon isn't too overpowering. Some light wood aspects noted. There's a slight hop presence as well. Very nice. Lots of chocolate, bread, and vanilla. This is one of the best BBA beers I've ever had. Well done, Foothills. Though this is only at 7.0%, I feel it. Sip this one.

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Photo of mdfb79
4.35/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap at 2010 SC Day, 2/6/2010.

a - Poured a very dark brown, almost black, with about a finger of a lighter brown head. Decent retention.

s - Smelled of bourbon and chocolate, as well as small hints of vanilla and oak.

t - Taste was similiar to smell, largely of chocolate, roasted malts, and bourbon. Also taste a little bit of vanilla.

m - Full bodied with moderate carbonation, this feels very smooth and creamy.

d - Overall I liked this stout a lot. I enjoyed the smooth/creamy taste of chocolate, bourbon, and malts and thought that this was a very balanced, more subdued stout than some others I tried this weekend. I thought the balance of bourbon and other flavors, mainly chocolate, as well as a lower ABV than Sexual Chocolate, made this a great and very drinkable stout.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.22/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap @ the Foothills Brewing Company on 12/12/09 during the Olde Rabbits Foot release.

Pours pitch black, with a thin covering of brunt mocha colored head. Retains with some rich bunching around the edges of the glass, leaving mostly spotty lacing and some brown oily residues behind. Bourbon is pretty strong here in the aroma, but luckily isn't overbearing, with some equally assertive notes from the Stout of dark chocolate roast, caramel, coffee, and maybe a touch of some dark fruity tones. Overall, this leaves, a sticky, woody, and boozy feel behind in the nose, which I'm really digging.

The taste starts with a thick base of chocolate, coffee, and dark roastiness. The bourbon is well integrated here, giving this some extra sticky notes of vanilla and burnt molasses. Leftover tannins and wood stick in the finish, which has a VERY dry and spicy lingering feel going on with it. The mouthfeel is full bodied, with a huge creaminess to the proceedings that spreads out across the palate. There is maybe just a touch of slickness from the barrel but for the most part, this retains that big mouth-filling feel to it. There's definitely some warmth going on with this, both from the ABV and bourbon character, but I found that just taking my time with it kept the palate from getting fatigued out.

The Total Eclipse was a great choice to put in a barrel, with its rich flavors and depth being more than up to the task of complimenting that added strength from the bourbon and wood character. Lots of spice & dryness here from those Pappy Win Winkle barrels. It was real pleasure to be able to try this version. Great stuff!

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Photo of CrellMoset
4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Barrel-Aged Total Eclipse Stout, on tap at the Olde Rabbit's Foot release at Foothills Brewery, Winston-Salem, NC. Served in a footed pilsner glass, oddly.

Appearance: Arrives a dark but still around-the-periphery translucent ruby brown, capped by the tattered remnants of a half finger of lightly-tanned head. Seemed like it might have been impressive at one point, but all that remains is a thin collar. More on this later. An examination of the edge of the glass reveals carbonation, persistent and slow.

Aroma: Wonderfully similar to the mouth (again, more on this later) - earthy malts, toast, breadiness, highly caramelized sugars, and sweet cocoa complemented by a delicious amount of spicy, earthy bourbon. Well-integrated on the whole, I'd say.

Taste: A step up. Intensely and amazingly bourbony, and a really nice bourbon at that. A thin - relatively speaking - stout backbone showcases earth, various shades of toffee, caramel (with a barrel contribution), coffee, and faint cocoa. The barrel aging contributes a mess of additional sweetness and an amazingly mature, complex, well-integrated bourbon note, faintly spicy, dry, and not hot in the least.

Mouthfeel: A little thin to hold this much flavor, methinks - lots of free, fluffy carbonation puffs this one up in a rough but nonetheless even way. Thinned out by bourbon addition, even more, no doubt.

Drinkability: I find this one to be a little bit of a mixed bag, perhaps proving that it's not appropriate to barrel age all styles. The Total Eclipse Stout is a solid if not amazing brew to begin with, but it is a little thin, and the barrel aging here just thins it out a little more, sort of taking away what body and foundation you'd like (or, at least, are used to) for a barrel-aged brew. This is pushing the envelope in a whole different direction, and though I can't say I didn't like, I can say it was an experiment for my tastebuds. Recommended.

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Photo of kkipple
4.17/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

On-tap @ Foothills the day of the Olde Rabbit's Foot release.

A. Same as Total Eclipse. Dark black-brown, small bubbled red-brown head. Decent retention. Purty.

S. BIG bourbon warmth, smooth oak and vanilla blended with some rich bourbon sweetness and the tasty roastedness of the stout. The barrel is in full force here and is foremost, but the beer is no slouch either. Some chocolate and coffee peeks through. Smells very "complete", even if a bit aggressive.

T. Mm, bourbon. I love bourbon. I love Pappy Van Winkle Bourbon. I love Pappy Van Winkle bourbon barrel aged beers. I love Pappy Van Winkle bourbon barrel aged Total Eclipse stout.

Just stellar bourbon complexity that comes close to overwhelming the (tasty) stout underneath, but never quite manages to, thankfully. Warm, peppery, vanilla, oak, toffee, cocoa, some (Cascade?) hops, mocha, roast. Delicious. It works.

M / D. Full, thick, warming. Wonderful bourbon-roasty finish. Not overly drinkable, seems more a nightcap than a lunch beer...

I'm pretty convinced that Foothills has this bourbon barrel thing down. A great stout kicked up a few notches by a lovely bourbon. Great if you like bourbon.

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Photo of glid02
4.22/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at the brewpub.

Pours black with a half-finger brown head. The head recedes into a thin layer on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of vanilla and bourbon with good amounts of molasses and very mild hints of dark fruit.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Molasses and dark chocolate flavors with faint roasted malt undertones upfront are quickly overtaken by loads of vanilla and bourbon. As with the smell there are hints of dark fruit midway through the sip that fade as the end of the sip nears. The ending is mildly bitter and leaves hints of dark chocolate and bourbon on the palate.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a solid thickness with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability is very good. I finished my glass quickly and could easily have a few more.

Overall this was a solid BA stout however I prefer mine with a bit more roastiness. However, I have to admit that's nitpicking and this is still a very good beer and well worth a shot.

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Photo of brentk56
4.1/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Arrives with an espresso brown color and a modest tan cap that hangs around as a ringlet and leaves a few wisps behind

Smell: Subtle wafts of bourbon, chocolate and vanilla

Taste; Opens with a black bread and chocolate flavor that is quickly joined by the soft bourbon and vanilla aspectsa; some dark fruit joins in as well; after the swallow, the biurbon grows slightly more pronounced though the overall effect is understated

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: A pleasure to drink; subtle flavors and well-disguised alcohol

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.41/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The final in the trio of offerings from Foothills that I was just insanely anxious to try. This a new takes on an old favorite.
The pour was the best I saw all day for a stout, hands down. Rich and completely black with a huge towering head on the top that would not quit. Spilling over the sides it left everything just completely soaked and sticky with a thin chocolate covered film. A wonderful mess indeed. Rich notes of bourbon and Vanilla welcome you in on this one and play off each other nicely. Warming lets a touch of the chocolate underneath peak its head up but not as much as I would have liked, still, very nice. As I take a sip, it crashes over the palate. Richness that is well served to say the least. Creamy and full bodied the deep chocolate and roasted malts interact with vanilla and a leather and tobacco note making it all so smooth and full that it was absurd. Enormous flavor here that was simply hard to withstand. I really could have just sat there with a glass of this all day, it seemed to really come together quite well. Long and very sweet finish had nice hints of molasses and vanilla leaving me looking around to find out just what had happened.
Overall solid as could be. It appears they cannot go wrong with aging their offerings. Very impressed with what was going on here and rightfully so. A lot of time went into these and it really shows. Very well done.

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Photo of cbros
4.62/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed on 8/1

I was fortunate to have this at the Foothills 'Beer School' they held on Saturday August 1st. I tried this first as a sampler but then had a full pint of this afterwards.

A- Pours a jet black with a nice 2 to 3 finger tan head.

S- They aren't exagerating with bourbon barrel aged in the title. This beer reeks(in a good way) of bourbon. The smell was so strong that I could smell the bourbon notes before the server even poured the taster. Behind the bourbon were some mid chocolate and tobacco notes but it is the bourbon that overwhelms the smell of this beer.

T- The bourbon experience does not stop at the smell. The bourbon flavor overpowers you at first taste however it mellows out nicely with the tobacco and chocolate coming through. This is a nice combination of flavors that normally I would not be keen on havinh however it works with this beer. I was blown away at how strong and mellow this beer would be simultaneously. Very good and very dangerous if consumed too much.

I am very sad to know that I had this for one day and will not be able to have this again. I was hesitant at first to try this because of my general lack of interest in bourbon but I am glad that I did. This was a very good brew, so much so that I tried bribing the bartender into selling me a growler, however to my dismay they only had about a pitcher of it left. After having this I would like to have more bourbon barrel aged imperial stouts to see how they stack up. A very good beer indeed.

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.7/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On draft. Pours black with a tan head. Aroma of chocolate and bourbon. Flavor of bourbon initially with a chocolately finish that lingers. Fairly mellow for a barrel-aged stout. Nice beer (and in general I am not a fan of bourbon-aged beers but this was done well).

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Photo of SaCkErZ9
4.22/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on draft at Laura Alberts in Daniel Island (Charleston), SC, 7.1.09

Nearly opaque black with black grape colored highlights and topped with a slightly mocha colored head. Copious amounts of lacing leave the glass quite cloudy.

Aroma is really bourbony. Vanilla and bourbon are about all the nose encompasses, which, in my opinion, isnt a bad thing.

More bourbon in the flavor. The bourbon really hits me immediately but fades slowly on the tongue leaving a long, slow finish. Was this aged on 23 year old Pappy Van Winkle barrel or was this aged 23 years in a Pappy Van Winkle barrel? Either way, its delicious.

Be ready for some bourbon in this one. One thing I like about this is that it is relatively sessionable. It isnt a huge double stout or RIS so it is a little more enjoyable in my opinion. I really liked this one.

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Photo of LauraAlberts
4.97/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Courtesy of Jamie and Scott at Foothills. They dropped this keg off after a Draft Promo and great night filled with CornHole, BBQ & Sexual Chocolate.

Appearance: Solid Black - Poured off tap with thick tan head. Nice lacing and head retention.

Smell: 23 Year Old Pappy Van Winkle Bourbon. Cocoa, Chocolate, Malt, Tobacco

Taste: The most bourbony of the Bourbon Barrel aged beers I've had. Over the top! Rich chocolate flavor, tobacco leaf, hazelnut, almond

Mouthfeel: My favorite part. The bourbon leaves the finish so clean and refreshing. This beer has a soft mouthfeel with a nice tannic thick essence.

Drinkability: very drinkable - I had a glass with some good friends last night outside in 89 degree weather. Amazing and refreshing. I highly recommend if you can get your hands on some.

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Bourbon Barrel Aged Stout from Foothills Brewing Company - Downtown Brewpub
91 out of 100 based on 37 ratings.