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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.

707 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 707
Reviews: 308
rAvg: 4.43
pDev: 8.13%
Wants: 243
Gots: 398 | FT: 32
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 (20) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 707 | Reviews: 308
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5/5  rDev +12.9%

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4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

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4.25/5  rDev -4.1%

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4.5/5  rDev +1.6%

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Photo of Bung
4.62/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500ml 2009. Had this a few months, decided to pull it out for my 35th birthday.
Looks like liquified brown sugar. Nice carbonation throughout, though just a thin layer of off white head.

Aroma, malty caramel, brown sugar, vanilla, bourbon-y oak, all solidly there.

Wow is there a lot of vanilla in there. Layered molasses, malt, Werthers original, brown sugar, peaty-earthy barrel. Finishes with a lasting caramel/vanilla/brown sugar sweetness.

Warming near full body. Coating but not quite creamy. Other than the warmth 13% is very well hidden.

An even better version of the already outstanding original.

Photo of biegaman
4.7/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2009 Vintage - sampled 26/10/11.

I was surprised by how loud a 'pop' I got prying out the cork; while the head itself didn't last long, bubbles continue spew atop the surface like it were the Stromboli volcano. It's no shocker that at more than 13% alcohol lacing fails to stick to the glass, although a piano could stand on the legs left. Like its ceramic bottle, the beer's deep chestnut-y coloured body is opaque, revealing nothing to the light.

There's no mistaking the bourbon in the aroma - it's as Ann as the nose on plain's face - but a particularly dark wild honey does come over the senses, with the raisin, brown sugar and resiny, bitter hops of standard Old Stock Ale not far behind. Of course, digging your way through the vanilla - not that you'd want to - requires a drilling rig and there's enough wood spice to make you sneeze. But that's all part of the charm.

Book it boys, this flavour is 5-oh. I'm no sucker for big bourbon flavours - in fact, a regrettable experience involving far too much of it and an 18 hour overnight bus trip without water makes me rather sensitive to the stuff - but even me (and my occasional gag reflex) must concede that North Coast has found the perfect balance of gooey heated butterscotch, vanilla bean, and malty-rich old ale.

Usually a beer with this much alcohol would upset even those with a cast iron stomach but despite the tremendous presence of bourbon flavour, the amount of perceivable alcohol is shockingly low. This is a sipper, to be sure, but less out of necessity than of just not wanting the glass to run empty. A *pint* of near 14% beer sounds ridiculous, but this is a bourbon-barrel aged beer I actually can (and want!) to drink in a 500ml serving.

Old Stock Cellar Reserve has all the flavours and complexity of bourbon but with the drinkability and thick, malty body of beer. It is, for my money ($25 dollars), one of the best bourbon-barrel aged beers I've ever tried, hands down. You get what you pay for; this has definitely been an out-of-the-ordinary experience. It is every bit as good as people say it is. A wonderful testimony to the American craft beer revolution!

Photo of kbutler1
4.1/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle. Poured into a tulip glass a darker caramel red color with a light coastered tan head that collars around the glass. Rich, bourbon, complex aroma that really is pleasing. Some booze in the nose. Nice sweet start with lots of caramel, oaky, and some booze. Alcohol adds an extra burn at the end. Medium mouthfeel. The booze warms the the throat. Quite the sipper for sure.

Photo of kiddynamite920
4.42/5  rDev -0.2%
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.

Photo of Chaney
4.59/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thank you Jayhawk73 for bringing this one to a small tasting. I vote Jeff for Mayor!

2009 Vintage:

A: Beautiful, glistening, dark brown color, with a clear disposition and no head whatsoever... but that's not the point here anyway.

S: Liquify some almonds, pour the juice into a glass, add some bourbon, high grade malt to it, and age it. Then, stick your snout down in the glass, and this is what you get. Amazing!

T: Sweet, but in a good, candy-like way. The bourbon was totally present, but it meshed well with the malt and hop profile.

M: Fairly well carbonated for this style, and the sweet lingering was pleasant. Virtually no lacing, and the alcohol warming was perfect on a cool night.

O: I've tried lots of Old Ales in my time, and this is certainly one of the best. This one is expensive were sure, but it's worth every penny in my opinion!

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.86/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle shared by jayhawk73. Thanks Jeff!

2009 vintage

The beer is a crimson / brown / ruby color, with just a fleeting glimpse of a head. The aroma is simply fabulous. Delectable bourbon, oak, malt. Perfect blend of flavors. This beer tastes amazing. Incredibly smooth, time has served this old ale very well. The $20+ price tag is a bit steep, but wow, this beer delivers. Alcohol presence is completely unobtrusive. I highly recommend this beer. A must try.

Photo of cosmicevan
4.79/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a - released the cage and decorked the bottle, filled my ccb snifter. deep ruby brown with a real nice shine to it when the light hits it...thin fizzy head that fizzed out. super slippery with no lacing at all...expected for a bourbon barrel aged brew.

s - oh zing...that's it! bourbon barrel aged old ale. YUM...my favorite blend of beer for bourbon barrels. nice chocolatey bourbon. dark rich fruit. nutmeggy old ale backbone. just perfect.

t - really solid and nice balance between old ale and rich chocolatey booziness. grapejuice, caramel. really amazing.

m - full bodied. rich. coats my mouth in boozy tingles.

o - as good or better than any other barrel aged old ale, but at twice the price. this beer is certainly a delicacy and provides the satisfaction you'd expect if you saved it for a special moment. although it's a pricey beer, it is a damn fine beer...world class.

Photo of flannelman808
4.32/5  rDev -2.5%
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.

Photo of ILikeGoodCider
4.07/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on 09.10.2011 from a 500ml painted brown mini-750'er. Poured into a 10oz snifter.

A: Dark, chestnut body. No real head retention. No lacing. Looks dry and clean when swirled. All expected from an boozy old ale, aged in oak.

S: Bourbon, vanilla, caramel, and a bit of floral notes came through. As it warms, more cocoa and caramel.

T&M: Not nearly as delicate or complex as the aroma. The esters are quiet low for a 13%er. Carbs are subtle. Malty, warm, and just a little dry.

D:: Pretty smooth for a big beer. Got even better as it warmed up.

At $25, it lived up to it's price.

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Old Stock Cellar Reserve (Aged In Bourbon Barrels) from North Coast Brewing Co.
98 out of 100 based on 707 ratings.