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Old Stock Cellar Reserve (Aged In Bourbon Barrels) - North Coast Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Old Stock Cellar Reserve (Aged In Bourbon Barrels)Old Stock Cellar Reserve (Aged In Bourbon Barrels)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

336 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 336
Hads: 956
Avg: 4.35
pDev: 13.33%
Wants: 267
Gots: 438 | FT: 47
Brewed by:
North Coast Brewing Co.
California, United States | website

Style | ABV
Old Ale | 13.16% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerBeing on 06-03-2007

Vintages: 2005, 2009, 2013
View: Beers (25) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 336 | Hads: 956
Photo of WJVII
3.15/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint glass this brew was a muddy dark brown with a huge head that dissipated quickly to nothing. No head retention what so ever. The aroma was very sweet with strong caramel and brown sugar up front. Definitely some bourbon aroma from the aging in oak barrels. The taste was way over powering with sweetness. A strong brown sugar taste takes over. Some bourbon and slight chocolate flavor is present as well. The body was thin and lacking good carbonation. Not the best brew I have had, in fact a little disappointing.

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Photo of Beer-Revelry
4.92/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a Duvel snifter glass.

Drinking this one at literal room temperature (60 degrees).

A - Pours a whiskey/cognac brown color. Forms a 2 finger, medium-tan colored quickly-dissipating head. High head potential, super low head retention. No lacing.
S - 5 - Wow, this is incredibly complex. Malts, bittersweet chocolate, very light barleywine style hop profile, leather, oak wood, wood sap, bourbon whiskey, butter, butterscotch, brown sugar, candied figs and plums, currants, raisins, dates, light marzipan almond cherry and lots of booze.
T - 5 - Taste matches the smell identically. Reminds me of a triple strong version of Founder's Backwoods Bastard for reference.
F - 4.5 - Quite smooth and oily, but also a bit then. Could be thicker. Really the only aspect holding this beer back from a perfect 100.
O - 5 - What an absolutely mind blowing brew. If you can get your hands on this, cellar it and save it for a special occasion, its amazing!

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Photo of Jmoore50
4.32/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Did a side by side with the Brandy version and in my opinion the Brandy version was better.

The appearance on this one is a burnt copper color with lighter cocoa edges. It has a good carbonation but has no head and a very thick oily leg.

This smells like chocolate, toffee, plumbs and fig, sweet malt sugars, some vanilla along with a huge whisky presence. It has more sweet characters in the smell than the Brandy and reminds me of that general presence that a whisky barrel brings to a beer.

The taste is really good, with this one being a little less complex than the Brandy version but still very delicious. Lots of chocolate in this with a great underlying vanilla flavor in there as well. It has some hints of toffee and caramel, this is more of a dessert beer because of the array of sweetness' that it has. A bit of oak is present as well.

A good thick mouthfeel with a nice ABV presence makes this one a good 'winter warmer'. The thing about these beers is that they could probably last another few years, its really amazing how well these things are aging. I guess thats what happens when a world class brewery produces a world class Old Ale and barrel ages it. Damn.

J

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Photo of kels
4.58/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The 2009 version, in a 500 mL, corked and caged, brown silkscreened bottle. Notes that it comes in at 13.16%. Big thanks to sprinkle for the surprises on the shelf at Crown in downtown Indy on New Year's.

From the pop of the cork I can tell this one's going to be a good one. Pours a rich pecan-nut brown with some light apricot highlights. The viscosity of the beer can be seen as the richer, darker hues show at the bottom of the glass and the lighter more transparent hues sit atop. The initial fizzy off-white head fades out immediately and leaves just a little bit of spots of lace atop the liquid. Alcohol content is clear as the legs of the alcohol wash the sides of the glass without lace after every drink.

Aroma is much more subtle than expected. I definitely get the bourbon - it's rich and bold and sweet. A bit of toffee comes through in the malt comes through followed by a light lurking alcohol vapor.

Oh. My. Goodness. This beer is heavenly. It is so deep, so rich, and so layered. The sweetness of the malts is close to honeylike accompanied by hints of toffee. The bourbon comes through beautifully; its richness is full of the oak, vanilla, and a deep cherry-like fruitiness. The alcohol is surprisingly subdued. It creeps behind all the deliciousness with a wonderful warming fullness. Body is soft, full, warm, wonderful. The carbonation is moderate and perfect.

This beer is absolutely incredible. It is everything I could have wanted in the style and more. From the first sip to the last, this beer continuously amazed me. It is so smooth and so well-done. I'm so glad I got the chance to experience it. If I were reviewing this beer on Iron Chef, I'd say drinking it is like falling into a warm feather bed, enveloping me in heavenly sleep.

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Photo of DrunkAl
4.24/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2013 label (January 2015 release) 500ml bottle. Flat, murky brown pour. Aroma is bourbon, touch of sweet dark fruit. Taste is caramel, vanilla, bourbon. Malty. Slightly boozy but very easy to drink. Other than the price, $23 for a 500ml, I have nothing to complain about.

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Photo of uvachief
4.46/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2013 bottle drank in April of 2015. Poured from a 500ml bottle into a brandy snifter. Aggressive pour resulted in a full finger of head that quickly dissipated. Golden orange brown color that is more orange than brown. Light penetrates it. Lots of carbonation appears present. Smells of bourbon, mild malts and dark fruit. Taste is very very complex. Bourbon whiskey (not true KY straight bourbon) then dark fruits like raisins, plumbs or dates. Then hints of caramelized sugars with malts, vanilla, oak and a host of other subtle flavors. Big boozy burn going down. Burn is significant but beer is smooth. Powerful ale. ABV is huge. But the complex flavors help beat it down. Finishes with dark fruit and bourbon. After one glass, you feel it. Don't drink and drive on this one. Now I know why it is a 500ml bottle. 6-8 oz pours would make a lot of sense. Feel is pretty thin - it is an ale - but it does have an odd lingering chewy taste. An EXCELLENT ale aged in bourbon barrels. Can't wait to try the one aged in brandy barrels.

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Photo of Avagadro
4.84/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Deep mahogany in color, with garnet highlights when held to the light. Its body is crystal clear topped with a kakhi froth. It doesn't stick around long, but that's not surprising given that this brew is 13.6% abv.

S: I knew from the second that I popped the cork, which was no small feat I might add, that this was going to be an amazing brew. How you ask? I could tell because the second that cork left its bottle I was bombarded with the aroma of dark rum, figs, raisins, creme brulee, cinnamon, and dulce de leche. This brew has a lot going for it in the aroma department.

T: The flavor follows the aroma, with additional notes of Pedro Ximenez, toasted coconut, and molasses. This brew is only slightly sweet, which makes these flavors all the more enjoyable. I am absolutely floored by the breadth and the the depth of the flavors in this brew, all perfectly balanced in a harmonious fashion.

M: Full bodied, with a touch of stickiness. This is quickly remedied, though, by a torrent of bubbles to scrub away only the stickiness, leaving the delicious flavors to linger between sips.

D: This is the most enjoyable beer I have had since Canadian Breakfast Stout has graced my lips. It is delicious through and through, and is truly unique in its flavor profile. As a frequent consumer of Bourbon, I was a touch disappointed that there wasn't a more overt bourbon presence, but what is there is absolutely divine. Regarding the first question everyone asks when they pick up this bottle, "Is it really worth the money?" I can say with the utmost confidence, "It's a bargain; this beer has flavor and balance that rivals any $40 bottle of port."

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Photo of pmlondrigan
3.9/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Old Stock Cellar Reserve pours transparent ruby/garnet red with deep brown edges and a half finger loose tan head. Head fades, but it's to be expected from such a beer. Aroma is sweet, hot and full of vanilla, oak, cherrys and candy. The flavor is the same. Sweet, hot and full of vanilla and oak. This beer is slightly cloying, and finishes sloshy. Nice and thick on the palate, the beer holds onto carbonation well for a bohemoth. It's hot period. Somehow this beer looses complexity from the barrel, the straight stuff has more depth but that isn't to say this does not taste amazing.

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Photo of mhksuccess
4.42/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had on NYE from bottle poured into snifter glass
the cork comes pop out of the bottle like a champagne boom
the appearance is nice reddish color little head
the smell is amazing overwhelming bourbon and boozy smell
the taste somewhat differ although it is still overwhelming bourbon
followed by a toffee and slight hint of vanilla but I tend to
not find it all that boozy for a 13% + beer granted it has a little age on it now
the mouthfeel is smooth and it definite a slow drinker
the only downfall to this beer is the price as it is $20 + for 500 ML but
as with anything in life nothing good is free
so I would definite buy again actually I am sitting on another bottle lol
but would recommend if you havent tried and have a chance you must

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Photo of djmichaelk
4.72/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Very pretty 500ml corked & caged bottle into a snifter.

A - Pours a rich, translucent brown, almost like maple syrup. I managed a finger or so of head, with very little retention or lacing, which is not surprising given the abv.

S - Plenty of bourbon to go around here, but not so much that it comes across as boozy. Brown sugar and toffee, some vanilla, and a slight nuttiness. Excellent.

T - Vanilla wafer, almond, toffee, and bourbon immediately jump out at me. The bourbon is exceptionally well-integrated, at once both obvious and subtle. I was going to mention peanut brittle but I've seen creme brulee in some other reviews, and that sums this up perfectly. Awesome tasting brew.

M - Great carbonation, with a rich, creamy feel. While it's a very strong beer, at over 13%, there's little to no burn.

D - It's always tough for me to rate a beer this strong highly in the drinkability category, but this one deserves it. I could go on drinking this until I fall over. And then drink some more from a sippy cup. The only problem is...

O - ...is the price. This is a phenomenal beer, and I'd love to have more of it. But at the price, I doubt I'll buy more than another one or two. Even at the lowest price that I've seen of $22, it's hard to swallow. Then again it's probably the closest I'll get to the brandy version from a few years ago, so I might grab a few more.

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Photo of Arenbeer
4.4/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

16.9floz bottle into a goblet glass

2009 Vintage

A- Pours a murky almost muddy water reddish brown with 1 finger of off white head that dissipates quickly. Not much lacing but leaves some beautiful alcohol legs on the side of the glass.

S- Up front the barrels come through with strong musty oak, vanilla, and coconut, but what stands out the most is the delicious smelling bourbon notes. Also getting caramel or toffee, rum soaked rasins, dark fruits, tobacco, and molasses.

T- Exactly like the aroma but a million times better. Sweet and complex bourbon with tons of vanilla, coconut, leather, and a nice booziness in the finish that's very pleasant and warming. A lot of caramel and toffee, dark fruits, burnt sugars, molasses, and maybe some tobacco.

M- Medium creamy body with a fairly high amount of carbonation that is almost to much for this style of beer. Just doesn't feel right to me. Finish is wet and warm from the alcohol but very soothing.

Skål!

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Photo of Brez07
4.45/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Reviewing from notes 1 month old. Served in a snifter

A: Dark mahogany color. At first there is a 1/2 fizzy head, but expectedly this disappears within a minute. Leaves good "legs" each swirl of the glass

S: Nose consists of caramel, vanilla and bourbon. Lots of bourbon, right up my alley. Slight nuttiness. Sharp booze finish

T: Booze hits you up front but smooths right out. Lots of bourbon characteristics. Toffee, vanilla. Caramal sweetness. Slight dryness from the barrel. Some dark fruit manages to come through

M: Medium bodied. Some carbonation at first but smooths out. Woody, bourbon finish

D: Regular Old Stock is great but this one... she's a winner. I forgot all about her expensive tastes ($23/bottle) as we spent a nice half hour together. I hope she doesn't mind I have one of her twins sitting in my cellar

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Photo of Lerxst
3.23/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-Pours a murky brown with some ruby highlights. Tightly knit bubbles rise up quickly and form a khaki colored head that dissipated almost immediately and left no lace.

S-Nose is very subdued. Some toffee, caramel, dark fruit, vanilla. Just a hint of bourbon comes through and I have to inhale deeply to get it. Nose needs to be much more prominent.

T-Taste is a little better. A nice mellow bourbon flavor greets me along with dark fruit, vanilla, toffee and a bit of booze heat at the back end.

M-Body is on the lighter side of medium with harsh carbonation leading to a dry finish.

O-I had high hopes for this one, but it was kind of a let down. Perhaps its because I enjoyed Fruet 2 days ago. This one pales in comparison.

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Photo of flannelman808
4.32/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: deep copper with a light tan head.

S: huge bourbon nose which melds into bright fruity flavors and caramel. WOW

T: Amazing beer, albeit a dumb expensive one. That said it's worth every penny. Bourbon spicy sweet flows into staple barleywine flavors of ripe fruit, citrus, and toffee bitter tree bark.

M: rich

O: too expensive but amazingly good and I think probably will get better over the next few years.

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Photo of Drinkerofales
4.57/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2009 Vintage

Thanks to Johnny for talking me into this purchase, ouch, my wallet, good thing I bought two.

Dark brown, beautiful clear garnet in the light. A dirty tan hand quickly dissipated to a ring constantly supplied by lively bubbles up the side of the snifter.

Smells of bourbon-y goodness, oak, vanilla, candied plums, booze, and malts.

A nice bourbon flavor leads off the tastes, and moves towards some candied malt sweetness. Pungent dark fruits are present, and a smooth bourbon finish lingers for some time.

Feels medium bodied, leaning a hair toward light. Bubbly carbonation makes it feel a little lighter. Incredibly smooth, yet leaves a nice coating on the tongue.

I was hoping for a little more viscosity, but other than that, a stellar beer. I could have smelled this all day, but gave into the temptation to actually drink this, and was not disappointed.

DOA

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Photo of Mavajo
4.07/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 4

Dark caramel color with a billowy cream/tan head. Aroma is mainly bourbon and caramel malt. Much of the same in the taste -- bourbon, big time caramel, vanilla. Very good taste -- Old Stock is a great candidate for bourbon barrel aging, since it already carries many of the falvors that bourbon aging imparts.

My major knock on this is the mouthfeel. Way, way overcarbonated in my opinion. Totally effervescent, almost like a soda. It gives it a sensation of being way too light and thin. That's not what I want from a 13% ABV barrel aged beer. It's odd, though, because this is the second time I've had this beer, and I don't remember it being over-carbonated the first time.

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Photo of MacMalt
4.47/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2013 Vintage poured into tulip glass. It pours a cola brown with a one-finger, ecru-colored head and lacing. The smell is decadant: roasted malt, caramel, vanilla, oak, dark fruit, and, of course, the bourbon. The taste really follows the nose: caramel, toffee, oak, raisin, and bourbon. There is very little hop presence. For having an ABV of over 13%, this ale is smooth as silk but definitely a sipper. It's medium-bodied, creamy, with moderate carbonation. It really drinks like a Barleywine. Overall, it is truly an outstanding Old Ale that deserves its world-class rating. I've been meaning to try this for quite awhile and I am happy to have finally done so.

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Photo of SolomonGrundy
3.84/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a hazy and ruddy amber, near to hazlenut in color. A spotty cap of foam forms and quickly evaporates into a gurgling brook of bubbles. No real lacing and some carbonation that is more than expected from the 13.16% ABV brew. One thing to note is the price: $19.99/bottle, which I believe is 500ml. That's a jumpin-jeehoosafat-load of cash for one beer!!!! Nose is ultra-robust, rich, sweet and engaging. Lot's of the bourbon notes right upfront, but it's less like booze and more like a bourbon soaked dessert. Some thick caramel candy notes, and a few other things that I can't place - maybe sweet dates and candied pecans. It's really awesome. Flavor is very dominated by the bourbon barrel aging. It blasts you right away and continues all the way through the drink. This characteristic actually tastes like a separate item - like it wasn't intended to be merged with the brew at all. It really tastes detached. Like you have to take a drink to taste the barrel aging, then another to taste the underlying beer. My guess is this needs to age a year or so to be really good. Some chewy notes right upfront, I feel as though I'm eating a caramel flavored brownie that is glazed with bourbon syrup. The underlying beer is good, I think, but it's so masked by the barrel components it's hard to appreciate. Overall, this beer is very unique and is quite fun, but is too one-dimensional this early for it to be at its best. Buy and hold.

What I like most: The Unique and luscious aroma profile.

What I like least: The XXX-rated price-tag and the one-dimensional flavors.

Verdict: Not worth the price tag right now, maybe after a year of cellaring. Worth trying if you run across it.

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Photo of trappistlover
4.36/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(375ml bottle courtesy of dionysus!). Pours dark copper with minimal head and a chunky head that quickly dissipates. Aroma has lots of bourbon, caramel, and some vanilla. Dee-licious! Taste is sweet, sweet sweet. And I love it. There is no alcohol burb at all; its noticeable only as it warms the throat and chest and still its gentle. Full bodied with an oily texture. Finish has just the slightest taste of alcohol. This is a wonderful beer

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Photo of kiddynamite920
4.42/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2009 Cellar Reserve.

A: Sizzling, effervescent head. On the darkish brown side with ruby and caramel highlights. Head is retaining well around the edge in a ring. Certainly up to par.

S: Aroma is unbelievably smooth and full of caramel, vanilla, bourbon, oak, brown sugar and a good reminder that this one is 13%. The barrel aging has certainly done this one well.

T: Bourbon flavors throughout, which works well with this old ale. Old stock being one of my favorite old ales, this definitely takes it a step beyond. Sweet vanilla and caramel mix with some spicy booze. Finishes sweet with a bit of heat in the back of the throat.

M: Get a bit of prickle, but this one really smooths out well. Alcohol heat doesn't really hit you until the back end. Only drawback is the body of the beer seems to have thinned. Leaves the lips sticky with a maple syrup sweetness.

O: Fantastic bourbon barrel beer. The bourbon doesn't take center stage, yet lingers throughout each sip. Really wish this beer wasn't so expensive, as I could see myself buying quite a lot of it otherwise. Great cellar candidate, and a great beer for a chilly night.

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Photo of Odysseyalien
4.21/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This is a delicious upgrade from your standard Old Stock Ale. The barrel aging really adds a couple of layers of delicious to this brew. My only real objection is the price. Still, I'm going to go out and buy another bottle or two on payday.

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Photo of beerandcycling88
4.4/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 500ml creamic bottle into a snifter. Nervous about this one because at $25 a bottle its going to kill me if its not any good.

A Pours a dark mahogany color with a very short lived tan head.However there is a lot of bubbles in there still.

S The nose is dominated by bourbon lots of bourbon. There are also some nice notes of vanilla, caramel, and a bit of oak. A nice complex nose despite the strength of the bourbon.

T The taste follows the nose with lots of bourbon, vanilla caramel, and oak. Also as it warms alcohol makes an appearance but not in an overpowering way.

M Very smooth mouthfeel with just a bit of alcoholic warmth. I can't believe that this beer is over 13%.

Overall this is a great, very complex beer that is worth spending an evening sipping on. However that the price it is, this one is strictly for special occasions.

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Photo of MetalHopHead6
4.29/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

North Stock Old Stock Cellar Reserve is heavy, sweet, and boozy.

It poured the color of muddy water, with no head and no lace left behind. The smell and flavor were excellent and complex, with notes of vanilla, bourbon, and wood. The feel was smooth and slick, with nothing significant left behind.

Old Stock Cellar Reserve is an exceptional sipper. It would pair extremely well with an after-dinner cigar. It is heavy with alcohol and loaded with complex flavor. Although leaving no real feel, it does leave a great alcohol warmth. Be sure to share the bottle, and do not drink it alone, in the heat, as I did. It was very nice; however, it packed an alcohol-related whallop.

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Photo of pzrhsau
3.86/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Murky brown and amber color with a robust head that dissipates really quickly. It's like a soda type carbonation.
S: Rich scent of bourbon oak and some vanilla.
T: The wood gives the bourbon a nice balance and there is also a kind of wine driness and sweetness to the beer. Rich bourbon and vanilla notes come from the wood aging.
M/O: Very crisp carbonation couples well with the rich bourbon and oak flavors. This beer is very bold and flavorful which is what was expected from something like this. A little on the pricey side but a nice indulgence.

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Photo of hopsbreath
4.23/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Half liter 2009 bottle split between two Portsmouth snifters and shared with TulipSnifter. Bought at Beaumont Market for $22.

A: Dark murky amber with voluminous white head that diminishes to a wisp ring. No lacing but none were expected. Great legs. 4.5/5

S: Nice smooth and mellow barrel character with minimal heat. No harshness at all with a lot of vanilla. The wood on this is pretty special. Outstanding. 4.5/5

T: Again with the sweet vanilla and limited booze. Peppery alcohol, butterscotch, toffee, and loads of other sweet bourbon characteristics come through on the palate. Damn is this smooth. 4.5/5

M: Moderate body with appropriate carbonation. Sticky finish. Good. 4/5

O: Good stuff but not worth the price tag. It's a solid four, but it you could score a half liter bottle for a better price it would be more appropriate. 4/5

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Old Stock Cellar Reserve (Aged In Bourbon Barrels) from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 336 ratings.