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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

322 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 322
Hads: 875
rAvg: 4.33
pDev: 4.62%
Wants: 260
Gots: 418 | FT: 43
Brewed by:
North Coast Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

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
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Reviews: 322 | Hads: 875
Photo of Greywulfken
4.5/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: ruby brown ale with a finger of tan foam; left a vague sheen down the glass

S: lightly boozed fruits, sweet resin and brown sugar syrup; vague booze

T: dark fruits like date and fig, bourbon barrels contribute vanilla and wood; something herbal and leathery, hints of shellac

M: medium-light and smooth, slick and slim; slightly sticky finish with an elegant drying

O: an epic ale done right by bourbon barrel aging - pricy ($20+/bottle) but worth it for fans of the brew or bourbon barrels and old ales... (514 characters)

Photo of MattyG85
4.74/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

2013 version. Poured from a 500 ml corked bottle into a stemmed chalice.

Appearance: Pours a dark and hazy brownish amber with a moderate amount of bubbles. Small off white head that quickly fades away.

Smell: A nicely boozy and sweet malty aroma with big hints of bourbon, caramel, and biscuit. Upfront barrel presence with good hints of bourbon whiskey, vanilla, oak, and wood. Toasted barley malt with good hints of caramel, toffee, biscuit, butterscotch, yeast, and slight roast. Sweet hints of molasses and brown sugar. Earthy and floral hop hints. Dark fruit hints of cherry, dates, raisin, and fig. A really good complex aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a boozy, bready, and sweet malty taste with big notes of bourbon, caramel, and biscuit. Big upfront barrel presence with boozy notes of bourbon whiskey, vanilla, oak, and wood. Toasted barley malt with notes of sweet caramel and toffee along with some biscuit, butterscotch, yeast, and subtle roast. Sweet taste of molasses along with brown sugar. Some earthy and floral hop notes come through. Nice dark fruit undertones of fig, cherry, raisin, and dates. A great complex boozy taste.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with a low to medium level of carbonation. Chewy, slick, and creamy. Has some alcohol heat as expected but it’s actually fairly smooth considering it’s 14%.

Overall: A really great take on a barrel aged stock ale. Big bourbon flavor with a great mix of toasty malt and dark fruit notes. Pricey but it arguable lives up to it. (1,506 characters)

Photo of Roguer
4.13/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

Extremely fizzy head, immediately disappearing. Not a promising start. Brew itself is an extremely dark brown, nearly stout/porter-like.

Big bourbon notes dominate the aroma, along with chocolate, brown sugar, and toffee. Dark fruit and oak are nearly overwhelmed, but overall, the aroma is quite pleasant. Just a bare touch of oxidation.

Bourbon, caramel, and chocolate up front; dark fruit and brown sugar; long finish primarily of bourbon, featuring vanilla, coconut, sweet liquor, and a touch of slightly sour oak.

Tons of foaming in the mouth; makes it a difficult beer to savor. Very hot, representing the alcohol very noticeable. Bourbon finishes very strong on the palate. Fairly long, wet, hot finish.

Truly a brew for bourbon lovers, this is absolutely amazing. Complex and deep; layered and strong; unforgiving and uncompromising. I have major complaints in the look and mouthfeel department, but the beer more than makes up for it on the palate. (961 characters)

Photo of ryan1788a5
4.04/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

500ml ceramic bottle poured into a snifter. This is the 2009 vintage.

A: Pours a murky brown color, like muddy water. Fine-bubbled beige head sputters out after a minute or two. No lacing, but that isn't surprising for a beer this big, old, and barrel aged.

S: Caramel and butterscotch (not in a bad way), subtle hint of coffee cake, maybe some maple fudge. Slight papery oxidation. Vinous undercurrents. Barrel aromas take on a supporting role: barrel char, seasoned oak, bourbon balls, and soft bourbon aromas.

T: Molasses, maple fudge, honey, caramel. Vinous flavors and spicy alcohol come forward for a while. Wet paper/cardboard oxidation reflects the age. The bourbon still has a mild kick, even after all this time. Oak, bourbon, and barrel char bring up the rear and ride into the finish.

M: A once fat malt body is now just starting to thin a little with age. There's still a slick silkiness to it and a slight coating feel and a nice roundness. Tingling carbonation is still there. Soothing alcohol warmth.

O: This has aged well for 6+ years. It could probably still go another handful of years at least, depending on one's preferences. If you like the aged Thomas Hardy or J.W. Lees vintages, you will find some common ground here. Old Stock is one of the only American made Old Ales that can be mentioned in the same breath as those. (1,354 characters)

Photo of Bosoxfan20
4.38/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Doesn't look like much as it pours a murky brown with an off white wispy head. Aroma of vanilla, oak, bourbon, figs, plums, and countless other dark fruits. Flavor explodes with vanilla, bark, and booze. Delicious. Comes off a little hot, but I don't mind. I don't care for the base...I've tried and tried, but I just don't. But something magical happens when it hit barrels. Just a notch bellow the brandy version, but still fantastic. (436 characters)

Photo of KansasBeerLover
4.52/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

8 oz. Draught served in a snifter.

Appearance: Dark brown body. Head was creamy two fingers deep. Lacing was absent.

Smell: Bourbon, barley malt, wine-like.

Taste: Alcohol is present. Bourbon, brandy, barley malt, caramel.

Mouthfeel: Sweet and thick. If not for the alcohol it would be smooth.

Overall: For a strong ale it is good. Another one that could benefit from cellaring. (384 characters)

Photo of Greasy
4.55/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2013 Edition poured into a Duvel tulip.

A: Murky brown. 1.5 finger off white head makes a cameo appearance and quickly dissipates into nothingness.

S: Plenty of bourbon. Toffee. Hints of caramel.

T: Big bourbon flavor up front with hints of toffee and sweet malts in the middle.

M: Medium body. No alcohol bite for a 14.1% abv monster. Smooth finish.

O: Is it worth the hefty pricetag? Probably. It is so well made. Not exactly flying off the shelves like most limited release BA beers, so I'll probably grab another to cellar for a couple of years. (557 characters)

Photo of Sludgeman
3.63/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This a fine barrel aged product but not an excellent "old ale" as reflected in the many other reviews. It's late so I'll fill in the details in a few days from my notes. (169 characters)

Photo of Odysseyalien
4.21/5  rDev -2.8%
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. (241 characters)

Photo of JamesStreet
4.49/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2013 Cellar Reserve poured on tap at Corporate Draft and Brew in Baton Rouge.
A - murky ruby color with a thinly bubbled head. Not much lacing
S - toffee, caramel, spirits, a bit of butterscotch, deliciousness.
T - follows the nose with the toffee and booze coming through. Nice hop bite as well
M - smooth, velvety creaminess. Low carbonation.
O- this was a treat! I've loved Old Stock Ale but Cellar Reserve is a step above. So good! (440 characters)

Photo of beergoot
4.03/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Unique label info: 2013 Cellar Reserve version, ABV of 14.1%

Murky reddish-brown body with a thick, fluffy head. Rich caramel nose; toffee and dried nuts. Deep caramel sweetness; toffee; boozy; hint of bourbon; slowly developing hop bitterness at the finish. Heavy body; thick and chewy.

Malt forward with a slowly developing yet ultimately satisfying bourbon tinged finish. Bold, complex, and deeply satisying. (413 characters)

Photo of gatornation
4.49/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A-pours a dark copper color with an off white head nice amount of lacing left on the glass
S-bourbon with oak toffee and caramel and bread notes
T-fantastic BA presence with the base beer nice notes of wood and malts with some dark fruit
M-medium carbonation with loads of BA notes slight alcohol burn
O- a great BA brew very tasty 500ml was the right size its pricey but worth a try (384 characters)

Photo of notchucknorris
4.48/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a dark caramel color with a huge two finger tan head. Was not expecting such a great head from this one. Looks amazing.

S: Bourbon, molasses, wet wood, some toasted brown sugar, freshly baked banana bread and maybe just a touch of leather.

T: This base beer is so amazing, I really don't think you can do wrong with it. It's fantastic alone, it's great in brandy barrels and this is amazing as well. Caramel, toasted biscuit, and a good amount of bourbon. The finish brings just a hint of the alcohol, but it gives just a touch of dryness, rather than burning the hell out of you. 14%? What 14%. I may like the brandy version better, but this is pretty tasty. (672 characters)

Photo of DrunkAl
4.24/5  rDev -2.1%
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. (271 characters)

Photo of BowWowWowYippyYoIPA
4.28/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

2013 bottle

Look - Pours a dark chestnut brown with white effervescent head. Head dissipates quickly with small to medium bubbles. No clinging. Once head disappears the color is shown to be a deep ruby red when held to light. Resembles a liquor. 4.5 paws.

Smell - Deep, rich dark fruit notes of date and fig. A bit of caramel. A slight hint of creme brulee. Roasty and nutty, with a walnut astringency. 4.5 paws

Taste - Rich nutty flavor melded with chewy fruit. Very boozy finish, but seems to work well with the other flavors. Woody bourbon flavor is there, with only the slightest hint of vanilla. 4.25 paws.

Feel - Somewhat thin, surprisingly bubbly. Not much tingle on the tongue, but most prevalent on the sides. 3.75 paws.

Overall - A delightful beer, but a little too hot at this point. Give it a couple years to mellow and this would be a heavenly treat on a warm night. 4.25 paws. (912 characters)

Photo of Catracho5
4.58/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

500 ml bottle poured into a Belgian style tulip

A: Dark red, amber, head dissipated fairly quick, tiny bubbles streaming, looks pretty thin, no lacing at all.

A: Big bourbon up front, sweet caramel, coconut, very sweet aromas, alcohol is noticeable, smells like a barley wine

T: Big bourbon, toasted coconut, sweet caramel flavors, I am picking up the base beer, getting that Old Stock Ale flavor slightly in the middle, it's really hot when it's cold but taste really good as it warms.

M: Medium mouthfeel

O: World class, big bourbon, toasted coconut, sweet aromas, warms up really well, more flavors as it warms, really nice, worth the $25 for 500ml bottle, not sure, but if this was around $16-18 I would stock up and cellar a few. But the price is the only concern I am not at all disappointed with the beer, cheers! (825 characters)

Photo of M_chav
4.43/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours a murky-brown with nice carbonation - not the prettiest looking beer but appropriate for an old ale. Smells of dark fruits, reminds me of a barleywine. Tastes very good, lots of sweetness up front, dark fruits, and booze is present but not too forward. Could sip on this all night, delicious. (300 characters)

Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.76/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Poured into a teku glass, the head is rather fizzy and loud, but forms light, airy and wispy inside. Steady surging carbonation is visible in the amber/light brown body. 4.25

From the moment I uncorked the beer, sweet brown sugar radiated outward. It's a heavy presence but caramel, port, and raisin all mingle alongside. The party doesn't end there: vanilla, oak, sticky bourbon, and molasses ooze through too. The smell overall is dessert-like, delectable and perfect. 5

Taste does not disappoint. True to the nose almost to a T. Caramel, brown sugar, vanilla, oak, and some port-like raisin quality. I get oatmeal cookie flavors from sip to sip. The brew suggests bourbon but it stands on its own and has plenty more to offer, all delicious. 4.75

Very light on the boozy feel, with only a faint burn on the finish and that enhances the experience for me. I can savor the flavors and let the creaminess roll around on the tongue. The body is deceptive, finishing light and sweet, but it's chewy and almost silky beforehand. 4.5

Delicious. Damn delicious. It's damn expensive too, but I'm not the least disappointed and quite happy with this investment. (1,159 characters)

Photo of larryarms847
4.66/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark caramel brown and sits very dark brown in the glass with a slight amber hue and a thin layer of tan foam.

Dark fruits, heavy bourbon, toffee, and caramel.

Caramel, toffee, and dark fruits right up front with a strong bourbon finish with a touch of vanilla to note.

Heavy bodied, light-nearing medium carbonation, fruity esters, sweet, warming bourbon.

Overall, definitely different, but very tasty. (413 characters)

Photo of vic21234
4.84/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Corked and caged 2013 Vintage poured into a snifter at room temperature.

A- Pours a clear and bubbly mahogany color with a small amount of fizzy off-white head that quickly fades.

S- Smells great, with notes of dark fruits, slight sweetness, and lots of bourbon.

T- At first taste is caramel and dark fruits. Then comes notes of sweet oak and bourbon.

M- Medium bodied, lightly carbonated, well balanced, drinks hot with a nice warming after each sip.

Great beer, and huge bourbon characters. (502 characters)

Photo of Beersnake1
4.55/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from fridge temp to tulip. Dark brown with good carbonation. Smell was out of this world. Beautiful hints of caramel, vanilla, dark fruit, and bourbon. Reminded me of a world-class BA barleywine (e.g. Sucaba). Blew me away. The taste followed nicely, which was nice. Similar attributes as the nose. Feel was very nice, giving an overall stellar beer. I am extremely happy to have tried this! (407 characters)

Photo of gillagorilla
4.21/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

From bottle during a vertical tasting with 2014 Old Stock, 2012 Otsuchi, and 2011 Brandy.

Dark brown, with the BA versions being less carbonated.

Delicious with a decent amount of bourbon notes. (197 characters)

Photo of Devman171
4.23/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle, Vertical tasting with 2014 old stock, 2012 ostuchi, 2011 Brandy, 2009 Bourbon. All pour similar murky brown with the BA versions being fairly low carb. Aroma is dark fruits, light oak and bourbon, smooth booze and rich malts. (233 characters)

Photo of leroybrown10
4.59/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2009 Vintage poured into a crystal snifter. Pours a cloudy rusty brown color. Small cream colored head disappears quickly leaving behind no lacing. Looks sticky/syrupy.

Rich sweet aromas of caramel, brown sugar, toffee, sugar cane and molasses. Muted bourbon. I've had more recent vintages where the bourbon was more pronounced. A bit boozy on the back end.

Amazingly smooth flavor. Sweet and boozy blended perfectly. Rich caramel malt, toffee and molasses. Muted dark fruits. Overripe plum, hints of date and sweet raisin. Oak barrel. Something reminiscent of sticky bread pudding.

Rich mouth feel bordering on syrupy. Smooth and oily letting flavors spread and linger. Moderate carbonation. Boozy but not overmuch.

This is an amazing beer from North Coast. This review reflects an updated score. My original was 4/4.5/4.5/4.5/4.5 for 4.47 total. That was a 2013 vintage on draft that was about 1 year old. That was excellent, this was beyond that. Highly recommend letting this beer age as it becomes truly exceptional. (1,047 characters)

Photo of BMMillsy
4.63/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2009 bottle purchased and poured at The Porter Bar in Atlanta on 11/23/14. Pours deep dark brown with no head at all. Beautiful aroma of vanilla, caramel, lots of smooth bourbon still present, oak, toffee, marshmallow. Flavor follows with a big bourbon punch that is very mellow, sweet brown sugar and caramel, vanilla marshmallow notes, a hint of chocolate, smooth oak. Wow this is good. Chewey body with low plus carbonation, coats the mouth. This was really nice and the bottle was clearly well-kept for the past few years. Just a really nice beer.

Updating with a 2013 edition and the fresher bottle is superior and world class. Just delicious. Get as many of these as you can find. (695 characters)

Old Stock Cellar Reserve (Aged In Bourbon Barrels) from North Coast Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 322 ratings.