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Dark Apparition - Bourbon Barrel Aged - Jackie O's Pub & Brewery

Not Rated.
Dark Apparition - Bourbon Barrel AgedDark Apparition - Bourbon Barrel Aged

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

114 Reviews
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 114
Hads: 512
rAvg: 4.21
pDev: 4.75%
Wants: 470
Gots: 143 | FT: 27
Brewed by:
Jackie O's Pub & Brewery visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ffejherb on 01-24-2010

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Dark Apparition - Bourbon Barrel Aged Alström Bros
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Reviews: 114 | Hads: 512
Photo of schwaeh
2.23/5  rDev -47%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

22oz bottle from June 2011.

A: Comes out an inky flat black with no head at all. Carbonation is moderate from what I can tell. Not much to look at.

S: Smells incredibly sweet being overrun by dark fruits. Chocolate covered cherries gone bad. Not the same beer it was a year ago at all.

T: Ugh extreme sweetness coupled with biting tartness. Plenty of dirty "chocolate covered cherries gone bad" aspects. Some smokey malt base with a little anise. Not much bourbon goodness left in the beer. Not pleasant.

M: Thin body with a grittiness to it. Slight spritz of carbonation.

O: Just like the base dark app I had a couple months ago, this seems to suffer from some unwanted bugs. Same base, same nasty infected taste. Pretty rancid stuff at this point. I'm not happy at all that I'm gonna drainpour another one of these. At this price point I'm sure as hell gonna think twice about buying any more beers from them. (917 characters)

Photo of Arbitrator
2.52/5  rDev -40.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Chilled bottle into a glass. 2011 vintage, bottle 274 / 336. Thanks to claaark13 for this one!

I enjoyed this beer quite a bit last year (scroll down for the original review), so I retraded for the latest batch. Re-review here.

A: Pours a dark brown body that appears opaque in the center, with a mild maroon translucence around the edges. A short-lived tan head appears and vanishes quickly.

S: Bourbon is noticeable on the nose, along with vanilla and oak. Leather, chocolate, and caramel. A touch of soy sauce.

T: The taste is a bit disconcerting to me. I remember last year's having a dominant bourbon character composed of sweeter flavors like caramel, vanilla, and milk chocolate. This one still has some bourbon, along with base beer flavors like milk chocolate and some anise, but it's starting to turn a tad green apple-y, with a pronounced grainy sourness. More smoke and soy than I remembered this beer having. It's an odd experience.

M: Medium-bodied, with low carbonation. It feels thin, and finishes semi-dry. Otherwise, it's fairly velvety and clean, though the tartness amplifies a perceived, lingering bitterness in the aftertaste. Just a touch of booze bite.

O: This wasn't as impressive as I remembered it being last year. The flavor in particular has taken a boozy and slightly tart turn; I'd hesitantly say this was in the incipient stages of infection, but I'll see if more reports echo my experience, first. Whatever the case, I wasn't particularly impressed with this bottle, though I wouldn't say it was undrinkable.

EDIT: I have since had the base version, which also has the same grainy sourness I picked up in the bourbon and (to a lesser degree) in the brandy-barrel aged iterations. I think that flavor is just a hallmark of this particular beer now. I can't say I love it.

~~~~

Original review:

3.5 / 4.0 / 4.5 / 4.5 / 4.5 (A)

Thanks to nickd717 for opening this up.

A: Pours a black body that reveals itself to be a clear, dark brown in smaller quantities. The head is tan in color; it rises to a half-pinky in height and vanishes quickly. No lace.

S: Caramelly bourbon, brown sugar, molasses, chocolate, oak. Very light vanilla. There's a small presence of alcohol. I will say it's not harsh, just there. I don't necessarily like that quality, but I'm sure it will fade as the beer ages.

T: Bourbon, caramel, milk chocolate, vanilla. Toasted oak and coconut. The finish is relatively clean, with a small presence of tannins and a lingering aftertaste of caramel. The booze I detected on the nose is even more subdued here. The barrel character is pretty well integrated. With more complexity and mellowness in the flavor, I'd have bumped this up to a 5.0. Right now it's beginning to show the signs of greatness, but they haven't fully materialized.

M: There's a mild warmth, but nothing I would call "hot" in this beer. It has a full, rich flavor, but it is not a viscous beer. I like that characteristic; I'm less impressed by underattenuated, syrupy beers than I am by beers that nail the sweet spot. I think this is a fine example.

D: This was left on the table as the tickers moved on to greener pastures. I kept taking more pours of it. I enjoyed it. (3,219 characters)

Photo of corby112
2.79/5  rDev -33.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Pours pitch black with a half finger beige head that quickly settles into a thin ring.  Sporadic spots of lacing left behind.

Sweet bourbon aroma with a decent barrel presence.  Some toasted oak, vanilla, sweeet bourbon, coconut, chocolate, caramel malt, toffee and coffee bean.  Bourbon barrel nicely integrated.

On the lighter end of medium bodied with a boozy bourbon barrel presence that lingers over the sweeter malt notes into slightly dry finish.  Boozy but not too hot with lots of bourbon flavor. Some dry oak and vanilla but mostly boozy bourbon overpowering things.  Underneath there is some roasted malt complimenting the dry oak.  Hints of toast, dark chocolate, coffee bean and oatmeal.  Sweet and boozy with a very strong bourbon flavor that overpowers everything else.  That being said it never gets too hot but it's still thin, watery and one dimensional.   (886 characters)

Photo of womencantsail
3.21/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle sent to me by Dan. Thanks!

A: The beer pours a black color and looks almost flat, in fact, it is. No head to be found, either.

S: Jesus is this boozy. Tons of bourbon, booze, and ethanol type aromas on this one. Lots of oak with a bit of vanilla as well as some chocolate and roasted malt notes, just a hint of coffee, as well.

T: Tastes a bit better, but still a touch harsh. Lots of booze/ethanol as well as a bit of actual bourbon flavor. Some wood and vanilla are there as well as roast, chocolate, and a touch of coffee.

M: Medium bodied with essentially no carbonation.

O: Way too harsh, way too much booze, and no carbonation? Not a winning combination. (672 characters)

Photo of PDXHops
3.52/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bomber from Ryan011235, poured into an oversized snifter. Dark and oily with wispy layer of creamy foam on top. This sticks around with an occasional swirl and leaves a bit of scattered lacing.

Bourbon is assertive in the nose, but not overpowering. A bit of roast, but it's chiefly a sweet-smelling beer- milk chocolate, vanilla custard and caramel with a dash of cocoa powder.

The bourbon flavor is fairly strong, a warming presence from sip to lingering finish. Rather thick and smooth, and plenty sweet. Lots of oak in there with the chocolate/caramel/vanilla confectionery combo. Some brown sugar threatens to send this into 'too damned sweet' territory, but a nice little undercurrent of bitterness keeps it from becoming cloying. Burnt and dark roasted flavors aren't a steady presence; they seem to dance in and out.

Overall impression: I'd be interested in trying the base beer, as I suspect I'd like it better than the barrel-aged version. It seems to me that the sweetness of bourbon and oak work much better with drier/roastier stouts than those that are pretty sweet to begin with. Still, this is a beer that's definitely tasty and worth a try. (1,160 characters)

Photo of FosterJM
3.55/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

776th Review on BA
Bottle to Goblet
22oz

@Woodshop Classix
Thanks Shail for sharing

App- This for some reason was a bit lighter than the regular DA. Only a 1/8" of bubbles and didn't have much cling or lace to it.

Smell- Well I think something went wrong. Normally the barrels add a certain depth of flavors and this was quite lacking. Some residual coconut flavors showed on the nose but mostly just booze and malts.

Taste- I don't think this was a good bottle. I can't call it infected since it has some good qualities behind and wasn't a sour stout or a Brett stout by any means. Just a little bit of a normal stout flavor and a little vanilla from the barrels and a little oily.

Mouth- Medium bodied and medium carbonated. Didn't leave a whole lot behind, just a bit of slick malts.

Drink- I really had high hopes for this bottle and was very excited to try it. A bit of a letdown but still pretty tasty in the end. I think I need to trade for more Jackie O's. (970 characters)

Photo of PeprSprYoFace
3.56/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Don't know what the hype is for this beer. Yeah it's rare but it's not THAT great. Poured into a snifter. Pours super flat again like the Cab Cherry Man. No head. No lacing. Super black.

Aroma is good. Probably the best part. It's super bourbony. Nice stouty ness. Caramel and some slight dark fruits.

Taste is way too thin. And no carb. Has a nice bourboness. Little bit of roast in the finish. The flavor is really lacking like some caramel and body you would expect from a stout of this style.

Mouthfeel is too thin and no carb. Terrible mouthfeel for a stout.

Overall this beer was disappointing. And people are saying the west coast hypes up their beer. This one is not deserving of an A at all. There are alot more beers I would put up there. If their other beers are rated this high and taste like this I dont think I will be trading and giving up awesome beer just because the bottle count is 300. (911 characters)

Photo of cpetrone84
3.6/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pour is dark brown with deep tan head. The nose is light, lots of caramel, sugary booze and a touch burnt wood. The taste is bigger and rather sweet. The bourbon is laced in well but it falls off a touch mid palate. As it warms some vanilla comes through, notes of milk chocolate, with a fair bit of roasted malt. There is some coffee bitterness in back. the body holds up better than the rum barrel aged version. (413 characters)

Photo of kaips1
3.65/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap before bottle release day

This beer is a different BBA imp stout than some. It's a dark abyss of night with a nice sweetish oak vanilla nose. It's a bit boozier than I like with this tartish almost apple taste near the end of the sip. I like this beer but I think I'd like it better after a year or so on it. Overall it's an awesome beer but I'd like more age on it. (375 characters)

Photo of Jeffo
3.68/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This was the 5th in the set of Jackie O's Dark Apparation variants, consumed after the Nano Bean variant. A big thanks to boatshoes for filling the hole for us on this one. Cheers!

From a bomber into a snifter
Vintage: 2011
Bottle 7 of 384

APPEARANCE: This one was esentially the same as the vanill variant. Pours out thicker black and yields a small, medium thick, light mocha colored head with good retention. Better and thicker pour than the base beer, with a more impressive head. Black opaque body with medium levels of carbonation. The most carbonated of the set I think. Head fades to a slight wisp and ring that remain the whole way and leave some nice dots of lacing down the glass. This variant looks pretty solid really.

SMELL: A bourbon barrel nose. Bourbon, oak, vanilla and some dark chocolate. Bold enough with lots of dark chocolate and bourbon. While it could be slightly bigger, this is a nice mix.

TASTE: Bourbon up front with oak, vanilla and some caramel sweetness. Bourbon and roasted malts at the swallow, then some dark chocolate and molasses as well. Bold and lingering aftertaste of bourbon, oak notes and pure, dark chocolate. A touch of heat at the swallow. Pretty nice.

PALATE: Medium body and medium carbonation. A little light on the palate and slightly prickly carbonation actually. Goes down fine and finishes slightly sticky. Could use a bit more weight for the style, but this is alright.

OVERALL: Pretty good stuff, but nothing to write home about. The nose, while nice, could use a bit of a boost, and the palate could use a little more beef, which would help the flavor as well. I'd probably put this one behind the Vanilla and Nano Bean variants we tried, but still a beer well worth checking out if you get the chance. Cheers again boatshoes! (1,793 characters)

Photo of PaulStoneAnchor
3.69/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle #54 of 384, 2010 Poured into a Eclipse Snifter

A: Pours jet black with no foam whatsoever. And also there is no lacing to speak of.

S: Has a sweet aroma of brown sugar, sweet bourbon, and some nice hints of vanilla and oak.

T: Lots of sweet, dry oak along with some sweet brown sugar notes. And also there are some nice hints of coffee and very fruity dark chocolate on the back end.

M: Light carbonation, with a nice thick mouthfeel.

O: This was definitely a treat being able to try this, but after all the hype around this I thought the barrel overshadowed the beer itself, instead of blending and mingling nicely. This was definitely a great experience to try, and I am definitely looking forward to trying the Kopi Luwak version. (745 characters)

Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.7/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2011 vintage. Bomber #210/336 poured into a Cigar City snifter. Shared with schen9303.

Pours like all the other Dark Apparitions. Deep, near opaque black. No head, no lacing but oily, thick legs that really coat the glass. Big and bold.

Bourbon presence is immediately apparent in the nose. Boozy sweetness covers the unfortunate slight tartness from the base beer. Fudge, caramel, chocolate, and a very mild roastiness. Decent.

Again, the base beer here is not that great so no amount of aging in any barrels is gonna make a huge difference. That being said, this is better than either the regular or vanilla so far. Opens sweet booziness, fudge, and chocolate. Some ashiness and again, that mild, light, unpleasant tartness appears. End is sweet with some honey notes. Finishes slightly tart and roasty. Warming produces more sweetness. This one has a bit of hope.

Medium bodied with low carbonation. Oily and slick in the mouth and warm going down. Finishes sticky with a lingering aftertaste. Again, a touch thin but the barrel helps here.

Compared to the Vanilla and regular (I don't even want to think about the disaster that is the nano), this is the best so far. The bourbon barrel aging really helps sweeten this one and tones down that ever present tartness. A worthy brew. (1,293 characters)

Photo of Bosoxfan20
3.73/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

375 ml bottle
Pours a dark brown bark color with a faint tan head. Aroma of bourbon, brown sugar, molasis, buttery rum, toffee, leather and tobacco oozes out of the glass. A ton going on here. Maybe some raisin too. Nose presents with a lot of booze. It is intense. Flavors follows nose well with some added vanilla and charred oak. Very smooth initially, but a strong lingering alcohol burn. Feel is creamier than expected, but probably due to the low carbonation level that borders on being flat (not in a bad way).
Overall, this was a strong showing. Highlight for me was the aroma. Would have been exceptions if the flavor let the base shine through just a little more. (683 characters)

Photo of Spider889
3.78/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2010 vintage served on draft at the brewery in 2011. This was from the first batch/bottling of the beer and from memory it was far better than the 2011 batch. Thus I was really psyched to try this aged at one of the releases.

A - Short cap of foam atop a black brew. This head lasted almost the entire duration of the glass which was about as good as Dark Apparition gets. Thick/dense viscosity.

S - Nice roast on the aroma, strong boozy heat.

T - This is still tasting amazing, though it is still extremely boozy and bourbon forward in flavor. I found that the base beer is largely muddled by the whiskey component. Sweet.

M - Medium bodied, boozy, very sticky.

O - I still like it, but a year later the bourbon is still a bit much for my tastes. Thankfully this batch never took on the tart barrel flavor that some of these beers wind up with. I imagine that anyone still sitting on 2010 bottles would do well to cellar this a couple more years. (952 characters)

Photo of HopHead84
3.85/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

6/24/2011

Thanks to Jason for opening this.

A: The beer is a very dark shade of brown. Not much else to report. Small head.

S: Lots of coffee and roasted malt with a light smoke element. I detect an unmistakable nuttiness that accompanies a low level of bourbon.

T: Alcohol up front with faint bourbon. Roasted malt borders on burnt. Lightly nutty. Coffee finishes it off and bourbon makes a short appearance. Not much bourbon to speak of overall.

M: Full in body. Moderate carbonation. Smooth, sticky, and a touch thin.

Overall: A good beer, though not enough spirit or barrel character for my liking. (608 characters)

Photo of russwbeck
3.88/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

If you're reading my reviews, I hope you're seeing a pattern. Shared with nhindian. Bottle # 244/384

A: One finger of tan head that disappeared so quickly I hardly got to see it! Lacing is nice, however.

S: I am really having difficulty determining the difference between this smell and the smell of Bourbon Barrel Sweet Chocolate Love. Perhaps this has a bit more roastiness, but the bourbon, vanilla, and alcohol smells are extremely similar.

T: Wow I'm really impressed by the taste. While the smell is very similar to Sweet Chocolate Love and the ABV is higher, you can hardly taste the difference. In fact, this tastes less alcoholic than Sweet Chocolate Love. Coffee mainly, and a bit of chocolate, dominate the taste with bourbon taking a backseat. The coffee is HUGE on the backend. The bourbon comes first, followed by the chocolate and a nice amount of hops. Nice contrast in flavors

MF: Heavy body, the thin body of Sweet Chocolate Love does not apply here. Nicely carbonated without a big hit of alcohol.

O: While a bit of dark fruits/sourness is present, this beer was a nice surprise. I was worried that I was going to strike out with Jackie O's tonight, which didn't happen. (1,194 characters)

Photo of BrewUSA
3.89/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

BA Dark Apparition

Look 8/10
Smell 18/20
Taste 35/40
Feel 8/10
Drinkability 15/20

Overall 84/100

Summery: This BA stout comes across as super boozy and a mess of a malt Bomb. Not very easy to drink. It's mega complex and big. I suppose it's just for me. Add on the $12 price tag and it is beyond me how highly rated this beer is~ (426 characters)

Photo of IPAescotch
3.9/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 2

Poured into a snifter. decent pour. Tan head, exquisite lacing, looked like a dalmation. Bar was dark, but the beer appeared boldly black.

Whiskey smell.

Tastes full bodied n carbonated. Creamy bourbon chocolate. Not really the flavor for this beer, but reminds me of rum cake (if it was saturated in makers mark).

Mouthfeel is perfect, thick and creamy but not too syrupy, and with none of that trub you sometimes get in the bottle, maybe im just not used to drinking from a tap.

Drinkability is low just because this is so damn strong. Delicious, but i would never exceed two of these a night. (599 characters)

Photo of Seeker_11
3.92/5  rDev -6.9%

Not a bad extra from a trade. This beer does not smell as good as it tastes. Overall it's pretty good. Not as good as other Ohio RIS's but worth a tasting. (158 characters)

Photo of srandycarter
3.92/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Black for sure. No pop...no fizz. no head. Not required by some beers, so I am ok so far.

S - Soy meets coffee. Mocha coffee. Love soy in the mix.

T - Dense mix of booze, soy sauce, cocoa, coffee and wood.

M - Chewy, sludgy, oily stuff. Balance good. NO CARBONATION. It would have helped.

D - Lots of promise. Would have been lots better with the carbonation. (367 characters)

Photo of ShanePB
3.99/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Vintage 2011, bottle #83 of 336 opened by mdaschaf at our mini-tasting at his place. Served into a snifter.

A: Dark brown around the top edges though looking completely black sitting in the glass. No head at all, nor lacing. Somewhat bleak looking, especially considering the huge lack of any head at all.

S: Lots of bourbon, oak, dark roasted malts and milk chocolate. There's a hint of alcohol here as it warmed up, along with a very fudge and brownie-like notes, too.

T: Not as much bourbon as the nose would lead you to believe. Enough of a presence though. Plenty of oak and milk chocolate coming in mid-palate with touches of caramel/chocolate roasted malts towards the back. As this warmed, tons of dark fruits started coming out.

M: Very low carbonation, medium-bodied and not sticky nor chewy. Personally I would have liked a more carbonation for something this big.

This was a real treat to have. Among the top bourbon barrel Imperial Stouts I've had? I'd say no, but it's still quite good. There's enough complexity here but some minor improvements could be made to turn this into something great. (1,113 characters)

Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a small dark brown foamy head with light retention. Aroma of corn and light vanilla with some light black chocolate and alcohol fusel is good. Taste is a complex mix of corn and vanilla with some bourbon which rounds the edge of this beer. Body is full with low carbonation and some fusel alcohol is perceptible. Not bad though I prefered the brandy barrel version. (411 characters)

Photo of Davepoolesque
4/5  rDev -5%

Tasting dark fruit, vanilla, oak and a touch of tobacco. Very little sweetness. Short finish. This is head and shoulders above the original but still lacking elite status. (171 characters)

Photo of nmann08
4/5  rDev -5%

From a bottle, pours a dark mahogany brown, thin carbonation.

Smell is all bourbon and wood, caramel, molasses, a little roast, but its fighting through alot of sweetness. Flavor is sweet molasses, chocolate bourbon balls, lots of booze, still pretty hot. The finish is creamy and milky, sliding down your throat.

Overall, this is a bit hot right now, would like to see it smooth out a little. (397 characters)

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

Bottle. Courtesy of mothman. Bottle # 231/384. Pours a very dark brown/black color with minimal head that only slightly collars around the glass. Giving the glass a swirl generates a brown sugar colored coastered head. Dark fruits, molasses, bourbon, and caramel. Slight tinge of leather. Slight lace on the glass after being swirled. Medium mouthfeel. The taste starts off with an almost sweet start that then transitions to a leathery bitter roast flavor followed by the warmth of the bourbon notes. Also get some dark chocolate residual flavors. The bourbon is nice but a little hot and you feel the warmth all the way down. Not bad but I'd like to see a little heavier mouthfeel. (683 characters)

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Dark Apparition - Bourbon Barrel Aged from Jackie O's Pub & Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 114 ratings.