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Barrel Aged Sexual Chocolate | Foothills Brewing Company - Downtown Brewpub

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Barrel Aged Sexual ChocolateBarrel Aged Sexual Chocolate

Brewed by:
Foothills Brewing Company - Downtown Brewpub
North Carolina, United States | website

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.75%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Barrel aged Russian Imperial Stout brewed with organic cocoa nibs.

Added by LilBeerDoctor on 07-14-2009

User Reviews
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Reviews: 214 | Ratings: 1,160
Photo of fredmugs
3.71/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2012 version. After wanting to try this for several years I was greatly disappointed. Very little barrel. It's decent enough but certainly not worth waiting in line and paying $20 a bottle for.

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Photo of Davepoolesque
3.97/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Shocker, it smells like chocolate. Bitter dark chocolate, dark fruits and subtle barrel flavor. Getting mostly oak dryness. Wish there was a bit thicker and had more barrel presence. Oh well. It's still pretty good.

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Photo of aleckpa
4.07/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

As soon as I open the cap, I smell the bourbon. It is jet black with a dark mocha head that dies down and rims the glass. You smell is standard: bourbon, vanilla, chocolate, some roasted malt. However, each scent stands out which makes this beer unique. The taste is similar to the nose. A little bit of burn from the alcohol, but not too bad. I'm sure with age this balances out nicely.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.28/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottle shared last night at Umberto's tasting.

Pours a fairly dark brown, almost black, with a one inch head, and good lacing down the glass.

Smells really strongly of sweet bourbon, with a nice big chocolate flavor as well, some vanilla, oak, and coconut, and a bit of roasted malt.

This is pretty thick bodied, with a moderate amount of carbonation, and a creamy, rich mouthfeel.

A really nice effort from Foothills.

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Photo of Dope
4.05/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

September 2014 release.

A: Pitch-black pour. Tall, frothy medium brown head. Head dissipates pretty quickly with decent retention. No sign of lacing.

S: Heavy caramel with a little oak kick. Heavy milk chocolate. Decent bit of umami in there too.

T: Again, heavy caramel up front. Lots of molasses and oak with it, interesting. Bittersweet earthy cocoa in the middle. Light bitter coffee joins in the aftertaste, giving it a sort of mocha flavor that lingers for quite some time. Touch of caramel booziness from the bourbon lingers as well.

M: Fairly heavy, quite smooth. A touch of an alcoholic sting but not much.

O: Well, it sure it chocolatey. Loads of cocoa from start to finish. The sweetness and booziness of the bourbon helps to cut it pretty nicely. Otherwise a fairly simple brew (but I really wasn't expecting anything else).

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Photo of M_chav
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%

As a kid I hated dark Licorice but as an adult drinking a bourbon barrel aged beer with the heavy chocolate notes - I love it! This is a fantastic brew, please do yourself a favor and by multiples if you have the opportunity.

Nose is similar to a Russian Imperial Stout - the BB flavors take over once you taste it, heavy dark licorice and slight roasted chocolatey flavor will take over your mouth. I appreciate chocolatey stouts that keep it smooth and sweet, this does both extremely well!

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Photo of ronricorossi
4.25/5  rDev -1.6%

I've been feeling a little burnt out on RIS lately. I can't even look at the Marshall Zhukov in my fridge. That burnt sugary sweetness they all finish with has just fried me out a bit, become just a bit too much, too cloying. That said, this is obviously a great beer. If anything, I wish the bourbon was even a little more forward, to cut into that RIS sweetness. A great beer, but in a style that's fading from favor with me a little.

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Photo of NHbeerguy
4.45/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2014 bottle

Pours black with a decent tan head. Head quickly goes down but leaves a nice ring around the edge of the glass. Not the thickest stout but def has some weight for sure

Smell is heavy bourbon, chocolatey fudge brownie and some smokiness.

Taste is awesome. You get a very nice burst of bourbon followed by a wave of chocolatey fudge goodness. Slight smoke taste but very quickly replaced with bourbon again. Not much alcohol burn at all.

Feel is a tad thin. When poured I thought it was going to feel much thicker. Very silky smooth though.

Overall a must have for sure. The base beer to this is amazing and the bourbon just improved it in certain ways.

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Photo of CaptCleveland
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%

Bomber procured in trade from awesome BA trader Everett. 2014 dated, poured into snifter.

Opaque. dark brew, mocha head, scant lacing.

Dark choc aroma, figs, sweet caramel, bourbon, spice and subtle pine.

The dark chocolate hits first, then the dark fruits and bourbon. Nice hop bitterness at the end without an alcohol burn. Really nice.

Medium to thick body, the dark fruits really come forward. Some resinous consistency but mellowed by the bourbon.

Though not as thick as my fav BCBS, this brew has a lot going on and really hits the high notes for a BA stout.

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Photo of joe1510
4.35/5  rDev +0.7%

22oz Bomber

2013 Bottling

Another big, huge thanks goes out to Wilson for surprising me with this guy. Gracias! The barrel aged version of Sexual Chocolate is as black as a Nubian Princess. Foam as rich as milk chocolate with the silkiness of cocoa butter. The foam coats the glass in sexy, full coverage, transparent lace.

The nose is as rich as granache and as smooth as Marvin Gaye. Big dark chocolate notes thrive thanks to the cocoa nibs. Soft whispers of anise highlight the smooth roastiness amazingly well. The chocolate even brings hints of milk chocolate, slightly sweet. All this is cradled in expertly handled barrel aging. Vanilla wafers, bourbon, oak, and caramel are all soft and meld perfectly with the base stout. There's even a little peppery booze.

The flavor mimics the nose closely. A mixture of dense, dark and milk chocolate combine with a smooth roastiness that runs from start to finish. A rich nuttiness pops up in the middle, fatty...macadamia like. Big notes of vanilla and caramel comes through on the backend. Soft bourbon tones, a touch of coconut, and oak join the fray, all well done. The licorice weaves in and out of the flavor profile. Everything is perfectly integrated. This is a fine beer.

This stout has a fair amount of weight but it's light, airy, and silky smooth. There's absolutely zero stickiness and, in all honesty, a touch of dryness. The roast leaves some residual bitterness while the tannins dry it out. Drinkabilty for a beer this big is ridiculous.

I like Sexual Chocolate, the regular one, it's a good, solid beer. The barrel aged version raises the bar exponentially. It smooths out the licorice notes and adds tremendous depth. The barrel aging is more a compliment to the base than the main component as it is in so many other heavy handed barrel aged beers these days. If you see this beer anywhere, take it and drink it.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%

Poured on-tap at the brewery on the release day. The beer was served in a snifter, and it pours a jet black coloring, with a tan halo of head. Nose of chocolate, booze, vanilla, oak, and coffee. Extremely rich. Flavors are heavy booze and coffee forward, with a blast of bittersweet chocolate, wood spice, and roasted notes. Heavy and velvety, with a bittersweet cocoa nib aftertaste. All chocolate, with hints of bourbon here and there. Perfectly balanced and huge. Roasted and rich chocolate linger on a smooth finish. Great beer!

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Photo of NorthsideFred
4.93/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

2011 bottle, shared with a few buddies on my deck on the eve of Independence Day 2014.

A: Looks great! Black with a nice tan head.

S: mmm - The perfect balance of Bourbon and Chocolate.

T: Delicious! The taste follows the nose. Chocolatey Bourbon goodness.

M: Full bodied but not as thick as some other RIS I have had.

O: This is a great beer. I'm glad I had the opportunity to taste it. Some of the other reviews I've read on here mention slight oxidation. There was no oxidation with this bottle.

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Photo of homebrew311
4.22/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2011 vintage poured into snifter. Pours a dark brown with cocoa colored head. Opaque in appearance. Nose starts with mellow vanilla, some harsh barrel notes, and a bit of oxidization present which brings on some sherry like notes. Dark chocolate and roasted malt is present beneath the barrel. The taste is smooth and starts with dark chocolate. Next comevanilla and charred oak with more oxidization. Dark fruits come out. Tons of flavor here that is very well balanced. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy. Overall, a nice beer that pack a flavorful punch. The oxidization is a slight drawback, but still a tasty brew.

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Photo of roger617
4.53/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bomber poured into snifter, compliments of homebrew311.

A: Black, pours with a little over a finger of mocha colored head that reduced fairly quickly and leaves little-to-no lacing.
S: I want to say its complex. I want to say there's a lot going on. But all I get is chocolate and bourbon - and I am in love with the aroma. If you can imagine melting the finest chocolate, mix in a top notch bourbon, you can grasp the power of this aroma. Any other similar beer also has coffee, vanilla, roast/char something or other. Not this one. Simple, straight to the point. Chocolate. Bourbon. F-yeah.
T: A mimic of the aroma. Chocolate up front and throughout each sip, with a lingering bourbon character that makes me feel as if I'm drinking a carbonated bourbon infused with chocolate.
M: Silky smooth, carbed well. For an under 10%er it feels very thick.
O: This beer is unbelievably good. The alcohol is non existent in aroma and flavor. I received this as a 'surprise' beer from my wants list, and have to say it's the best surprise I've ever received.

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Photo of metter98
4.39/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a thin dark tan head that rapidly dissipated, leaving only a thin collar around the edge of the glass and faint hints of wispy bubbles on the surface.
S: Moderate aromas of bourbon are present in the nose along with notes of chocolate; these become stronger as the beer warms up.
T: The taste mostly follows the nose but has additional notes of vanilla from the oak and hints of molasses-like sweetness. No alcohol is perceptible except for the bourbon.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied and a little smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. The bourbon barrel aging lends a bit of warming to the feel.
O: This is a pleasant stout to sip and savor the aromas and flavors imparted by the bourbon, although it is rather easy to drink because the alcohol is mostly well masked from the taste.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4.06/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

650 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Black. A little bit of transparency. Big khaki head. Thick collar.

Smell - Starts off with a little soy sauce. Sharp bourbon. Dark chocolate. More bourbon as it warms.

Taste - Bourbon is very sharp up front. Too strong, really. Nutty malts. Dark coffee roasted malts. Boozy finish.

Mouthfeel - Medium body. Never very heavy, but the barrel makes it pretty boozy.

Overall - A vast improvement over the base, which is a good beer by itself.

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Photo of ThickNStout
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle from bcrossan (thanks man!). 2012 release. Served in a Cigar City teku.

Pours deep, dark chocolate brown with a finger and a half of dark tan head. The thin layer of wispy bubbles that linger leave only a few small spots of lace.

Aromas of bourbon, cocoa, slight oxidation, oak, vanilla, caramel and an underlying sugary sweetness. Much more inviting as it warms up.

Wow. The nose did not prepare me for the smooth yet bold medley of flavors. Softly boozy bourbon, rich dark chocolate, vanilla, oak, creamed espresso, molasses, burnt caramel, roast malts, faint charred wood, some brown sugar, a little bit of sweet dark fruit and a pleasantly fitting nip of alcohol. I could see how some could find this too sweet but to me it's outstanding. The bourbon barrel sweetness plays wonderfully against the bittersweet cocoa and roast.

Body is on the full side of medium with a soft carbonated tickle. More syrupy than creamy, this beer really coats the tongue. Bourbon, dark chocolate, vanilla and espresso finish.

Bourbon barrel aging is apparently exactly what Sexual Chocolate needed. The barrel cuts the bitterness of the roasty base and adds a terrific sweetness. I'm not sure how much of that smoothness comes from the 20+ months of age but I hope this isn't the last time I get to try this.

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Photo of Treyliff
4.42/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2013 bottle, poured into Sexual Chocolate teku glass

A- pours pitch black with a small light tan creamy head that reduces to a ring, leaving just a few patches of lace

S- prominent barrel aroma with bourbony oak, sweet molasses, toffee, fig & raisin and a hint of vanilla

T- bourbon and oak up front that compliments the base beer very well, really bringing out the molasses flavor. Good chocolaty base with dark fruit notes, leading to a finish of oak, bourbon and vanilla

M- medium body and carbonation, foamy mouthfeel that leads to a smooth and slightly warming finish, abv is hidden pretty well

O- the bourbon is nearly perfectly integrated with an already solid base beer. I wasn't blown away by the original Sexual Chocolate, but I was really impressed by this version

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Photo of Rifugium
4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not sure on the vintage. Stout-like appearance, black and opaque, with a nice cap of dark brown head that retained as a ringlet, leaving a few streaks on the glass, dabbed with light lacing. Roasty dark malts in the aroma, dark chocolate, bourbon and vanilla. In the taste, good blend of bourbon/vanilla/coconut sweetness and chocolaty/malty roastiness, with neither really taking dominance, lesser notes of coffee, cocoa bitterness, and toasted oak, slight hop presence in the finish. Medium-full body, smooth, not too hot, quite drinkable. I didn't really think this was too distinctive in the world of barrel-aged stouts, but what it was, was a good and tasty beer overall. A major improvement over the rather lack-luster regular version.

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Photo of brentk56
4.06/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2012 bottling

Appearance: Pours a midnight black color with an inch or so of beige foam on top; leggy lacing is left behind

Smell: Bourbon forward, with the ABV making its presence felt; chocolate, vanilla and woody tones, as well

Taste: As with the aroma, the Bourbon is very strong and dominates the front end, with the chocolate building through the middle; after the swallow, there is some vanilla and oak but the finish is rather boozy (even after 18 months); the hops have mellowed, however, and blend nicely

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with moderate carbonation and considerable warmth in the gullet

Overall: My preference in barrel-aged stouts is for a more subtle Bourbon character so I like to age a beer like this for a while to see how it mellows; based on this experience, my guess is that it might take three or four years to get to the point where I would really enjoy it

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Photo of n2185
4.35/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: pours black with two fingers of brown head that fade into a frothy ring with decent lacing.

S: roasted malts, semi-sweet chocolates, toffee, caramel, bourbon, and oak all come through strongly

T: roasted malts with semi-sweet chocolate and vanilla dominating with oak and sweet bourbon coming through as well. The finish is lightly boozy.

M: thick body with lowish carbonation, this beer is pretty drinkable for the style.

O: a good beer, overall. Not overly sweet or boozy, which I like in a bbal imp stout.

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Photo of Ryan011235
3.83/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Delirium snifter on 9/17/12

With much appreciation to PDXHops

2011 Vintage

A) A dark brown that looks black in the glass. I was able to get about a finger's worth of foam easily, but it doesn't hold long. Wispy retention and a few strands of lace.

S) I like the aroma on this one; it smells close enough to s'mores (at least initially) to tickle my fancy. Roasted chocolate is held in check and there is a decent crackery grain note that blends in with damp oak. I reckon the vanilla overtones from the barrel account for the marshmallow notions. Actual bourbon tones are faint.

T) Bourbon leads things taste-wise but it is a very tangy kind of bourbon that is not front and center for long (though some carries over to the finish). Charred oak comes next leading to a tangy roast. Chocolate comes in with some dark roasted grains.

M) The body is almost velvety smooth; a medium sort of feel. However, carbonation is too high for such a calming feel to be realized fully. Slight graininess on the finish.

D) Overall, this one is pretty solid. The barreling seems a bit on the young side, though.

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Photo of Stevedore
4.36/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle generously shared by Dustin at our crazy bottleshare last night, 10/5/2013. Poured into a Zwanze 2013 glass.

Looks like a typical great BA stout. Opaque, black as the dark. Not much of a head, a little bit of mocha fuzz on the surface, rather filmy actually. A little bit of lacing.

Lots of roastiness, coffee bitterness, chocolate along with some bourbon and some barrel. Its not intense, but its not weak, rather quite mellow. Enjoyable nose.

I'm really enjoying this. It's got that umami kind of flavour in some BA stouts. Pretty chocolatey and roasty, accentuated by a mild-moderate bourbon sweetness. Balanced well with some espresso bitterness. It's pretty damn good stuff.

Full bodied, thick, viscous and just right amounts of carbonation. Its a bit chewy and I love how the bourbon is a great complement to the base beer.. leaves a nice, nougatty finish on the palate.

Balanced with bourbon being a complementary adjunct. Its what I really enjoy about certain barrel-aged stouts. There are some where the bourbon and barrel pretty much taking over the entire beer, and I do not enjoy some of these beers. This one, however is perfectly balanced while providing a complex palette of flavours. Very enjoyable to drink this one!

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Photo of dar482
4.55/5  rDev +5.3%

A good dessert brew with lots of chocolate. The bourbon notes are quite subtle as the beer offers mostly sweet milk chocolate, caramel, vanilla. Roast and nuttiness round out the brew.

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Photo of dbrauneis
4.37/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served on-tap at Foothills Brewing in Winston-Salem, NC

A: Pours an opaque but clear jet black in color with light amounts of gentle visible carbonation along the edges of the glass and some faint cola brown + crimson red highlights. The beer has a half finger tall dense foamy dark beige head that reduces to a medium sized patch of very thin film and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of roasted malts, chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, and oak.

T: Upfront there are moderate flavors of roasted malts with a light amount of dark chocolate sweetness. Light to moderate notes of chocolate malts with moderate to strong flavors of vanilla and oak with lighter flavors of bourbon. Light amounts of bitterness.

M: Just shy of full bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Thick and viscous.

O: Overall not nearly as "hot" as it has been in previous years and much smoother... The bourbon is very complementary rather than dominating. Delicious and definitely worth trying - I would get this year's vintage again.

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Barrel Aged Sexual Chocolate from Foothills Brewing Company - Downtown Brewpub
95 out of 100 based on 214 ratings.