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

Dark Apparition - Bourbon Barrel AgedDark Apparition - Bourbon Barrel Aged

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

182 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 182
Reviews: 82
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: 11.53%


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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: ffejherb on 01-24-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 182 | Reviews: 82 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of rye726
rye726

Colorado

4.22/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Big thanks to George for the hook on this 1L swing top.

Pours near black with a silky tan head.

Nose has big bourbon notes up front followed by vanilla, oak, chocolate, espresso, dark roasty malts, plums, figs, dates and molasses.

Taste is very well balanced. Perhaps a bit raw, but better that than dull. The bready yeast really comes out here. Cocoa, dark malts, ripe pitted fruits, whiskey, wood and vanilla.

Medium full body is nicely carbonated. A bit thin through the finish. Tasty beer, but could have used more time in the barrel. But then again, what beer couldn't?

Serving type: growler

03-12-2010 02:59:39 | More by rye726
Photo of Kegatron
Kegatron

Pennsylvania

4.05/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Liter swing-top growler into several glasses. Thanks go to FooFaa for bringing this one to the party.

Pours a dense black, with a 1/2 finger covering of burnt mocha head. This stays quite frothy around the edges, leaving a big creamy cascade of heavy lacing behind. Just a good RIS look and the retention held up pretty well for a BA Sout. Chocolate is very rich smelling in the aroma, along with notes of roast and coffee, which give this some crunch in the nose. The Bourbon is very assertive here, with vanilla and woody textures helping smooth some of the more aggressive aspects of it out but make no mistake that this is a huge part of the monster bouquet on this.

Chocolate roast is just as huge in the taste, giving this a rich chewy sweetness. The Bourbon character is no slouch either, giving the profile a big boozy and dry feel. This finishes with lingering roast, a smack of vanilla, and a deep tannic dryness which literally sucks all of the moisture out of your mouth after each sip. The mouthfeel is VERY much on the full bodied side, with a huge chewiness to it that then gets much slicker feeling the more it sits in the mouth. This appears to handle its large ABV rather well, with most of the warmth coming from the barrel.

I really dug this for the most part. Very deep tasting with a complex strength to it, the only thing really holding this back is the aggressiveness of the Bourbon itself. This is one best enjoyed in smaller quantities as a sipper. I couldn't imagine tackling a large quantity of this by myself.

Serving type: growler

02-12-2010 13:20:49 | More by Kegatron
Photo of Deuane
Deuane

Pennsylvania

4.03/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to FooFaa for sharing this hard to get mini-growler of this up and coming Ohio brewery.

A-Black with reddish capped dark tan head that reduced to a thin veil of retention and left next to no lace.

S-DEEP bourbon notes overlying dark chocolate and roasted malt. Subtle notes of vanilla and coffee. In the end the bourbon wins out and this one ends up a bit hot, but still impressive if you are a bourbon fan, like me!

T-Deep, rich dark chocolate and roasted malt get caught in a tidal wave of bourbon. This one is impressive but the bourbon take a hold a bit to strongly.

M-Medium-heavy bodied, a SUPER smooth sipper. Bourbon notes dominate your palate by the secnd sip in. Finish becomes quite dry with impressive oak notes.

D-There is no question this is well crafted brew but ultimately the bourbon aging is too aggressive and dominates the other attributes of the beer. I enjoy bourbon immensely but in beers such as this I like bourbon WITH my beer not beer WITH my bourbon. Maybe we enjoyed this one too young and it could use some more aging to smooth things out. Good effort but a bit too raw for my liking.

Serving type: growler

01-28-2010 15:59:28 | More by Deuane
Photo of ffejherb
ffejherb

Pennsylvania

4.2/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to FooFaa for sharing a growler on 1/23/10.

A - Emerged black as a charred lung with a creamy, burnt tan head that reduced to a thin film and yielded virtually no lacing on the glass.

S - Smells like a bourbon-soaked brownie with subtle vanilla and chocolate notes. Ultimately, the aroma is quite hot and boozy with a huge waft of alcohol attacking the olfactory.

T - Rich and chocolatey yet extremely warm and boozy with a dominant bourbon presence and a hint of woody astringency. Finishes with a somewhat boozy bourbon character amidst plenty of earthy, woody notes.

M - Super slick and smooth with a very oily texture, allowing the stout to slide down the throat with ease. The warm alcohol presence provides a moderate burn on the palate. Finish is quite dry with a hint of astringency and lots of residual sweetness.

D - Dark Aparition is quite tasty despite its warm, alcoholic bite. Still, this RIS retains its drinkability fairly well, although it is quite rich and sweet. Very good effort overall.

Serving type: growler

01-24-2010 17:50:13 | More by ffejherb
Photo of BEERchitect
BEERchitect

Kentucky

4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

The fine folks of Athen's premier brewery finds great success with the Dark Apparition. So why not challenge that notion with barrel-aging for greater complexity, aged compounds and a simmering boost of strength? That's just what happens in this bourbon-barrel aged edition.

As the nose dives into the glass, a boisterous rift of coffee, burnt sugars, creamy malt, maple, molasses and chocolate waft about. Those are hard to distinguish from the bourbon influences- cherry wood, caramel, vanilla, marzipan and aged notes of sherry or port come to mind as the mouth waters nearing that first sip.

Getting the cart before the horse, its appearance pours with a mysterious dark brown hue that's ominously of tree bark. While its body is chocked full of shady cocoa powder, its head is thinly laced and captures a hue of mocha. Its low-forming head and necklace of lace suggests that the beer's alcohol and barrel complexities have gotten the better of its foam character.

But those fudge, brownie and mocha flavors are sooo irresistible as the malty-rich taste of roasted malt, espresso and bitter chocolates unapologetically grope the taste buds with its sultry sherry-like fruitiness and aged beautification. Those light meaty, savory, fruity and minerally characteristics pave the way for a decadent finish of rum and chocolate with spicy warmth and coffee-like tendencies.

Without any doubt, the body is full but is also picked apart with wine-like acidities, bourbon warmth, wood spices and cocoa dryness for a finish that is powdery, minerally and plaster-like despite its dessert-like effects.

This Bourbon Barrel Aged Apparition Ale accurately delivers on its whisky effects. Even though I taste "bourbon-esque" character, I feel that much of that comes from the malts where much of the "bourbon" influences are simply of whisky. I gotta question those spicy booze flavors as opposed to the more savory "bourbon" influences.

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2014 07:56:56 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium

Pennsylvania

4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Definitely among my favorites from Stone Soup '13. Major thanks to whoever brought it.

Dark, obsidian black pour, with maybe some dark brown around the edges, a dark mocha head dissipated to a thin, wispy layer, and the beer left some oily traces on the glass. Aroma of dark malts, chocolate, vanilla, bourbon-soaked oak. The taste reflected the aroma, and then some. Smooth bourbon, vanilla, toffee, butterscotch, dark malts and dark chocolate, undertones of dark fruits. Smooth, full body, creamy and warming. I liked this beer a lot, and since it sat untouched for a while, I had no problem helping myself to a second generous serving.

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2013 22:54:57 | More by Rifugium
Photo of zhanson88
zhanson88

California

4.63/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2010 bottling. Bottle 110/384.

Appearance: Pours out dark brown, almost black, in color. Not terribly viscous looking. A khaki colored head forms that has limited retention and lacing.

Smell: Quite a bit of sweetness initially with milk chocolate and vanilla notes. A hint of dark chocolate bitterness as well. Not much roast or any other form of bitterness going on. I was surprised at the level of bourbon notes that were still present, as this beer is now over two years old, but still a very strong bourbon presence. Seems nicely integrated, though.

Taste: High level of sweet milk chocolate notes along with vanilla. Not much bitterness of any kind to balance. Smooth bourbon notes and a bit of oak take over the middle and finish. It's pretty sweet, but everything is very smooth and well integrated.

Mouthfeel/Overall: Mouthfeel is nice. Just under full, with a good level of carbonation and a creamy mouthfeel. Overall, I thought this was a great barrel aged stout. One of the best I've had in a while. Very rich and decadent. Only real knock I have is that it is a bit sweet, but if you like sweeter imp. stouts, this is for you. This is drinking about perfect right now. I think 2 years is a good age for this. I could see it being maybe a bit too bourbon forward even a year ago.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2013 21:31:28 | More by zhanson88
Photo of HuskyinPDX
HuskyinPDX

Washington

4.25/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle opened on 12.15.12
Thanks to jodan for the bottle
Bottle 2011 104/336

A - Pours a very dark brown with only a few dark brown bubbles that cling to one side.

S - Strong bourbon, carmel, sweet fruit, oak.

T - Bourbon, then some sour ripe fruit, but subtle, then some vanill and finally finishes with some coffee.

D - Low carbonation with a heavy body.

O - This is a flavor rollercoaster - Layer after layer, wow!

Serving type: bottle

12-24-2012 07:03:05 | More by HuskyinPDX
Photo of twiggamortis420
twiggamortis420

Texas

4.4/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle courtesy of Auslander, muchas gracias for this gem! Pours a lighter shade of black with a small cap of brown head. Average retention and spotty lace.

Nose is chocolaty as hell with a fair amount of rum-soaked blackberry fruitiness and vanilla. The woody aspect of the barrels is pretty subtle and the bourbon is complementary as opposed to dominant. Smells delicious.

Wood comes out to play a bit more in the flavor and is followed by the signature bourbon sting. Fruitiness is a big part of this beer and overpowers the chocolate and any sweetness that might pervade the beer. I really like the interplay of the various flavors on this beer, it flows from fruit to roast to bitter flawlessly and like Twizzlers...makes mouths happy! Mouthfeel is decent, although ‘thick’ would never come to mind. I like it a lot, much better than the brandy barrel version I had previously.

Serving type: bottle

12-07-2012 03:26:13 | More by twiggamortis420
Photo of dirtylou
dirtylou

Washington

4.25/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

#239/384; secret santa 2011; split 3 ways

appearance: served in my great lakes chalice, ebony body - light creamy mocha lace, mildly carbonated

smell: bourbon, rich dark chocolate, dark fruit

taste: This was some tasty stuff - quite bourbon-forward with a ton of chocolate, dark fruit caramelized in brown sugar, molasses, oak, heavy roasted malt, charred espresso.

mouthfeel: big and bold, smooth finish

overall: great stuff - would love to try some of the other variants

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2012 17:22:02 | More by dirtylou
Photo of Jeffo
Jeffo

Netherlands

3.7/5  rDev -12.9%
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!

Serving type: bottle

07-11-2012 18:00:29 | More by Jeffo
Photo of mdaschaf
mdaschaf

Washington

4.23/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to Matt for sending this my way in a recent bif! Review from notes.

A: Pours black with a very small tan head that dissolves quickly and leaves behind no lacing whatsoever.

S: Nice and bourbony, some chocolate and plenty of oak. There is a little bit of vanilla and caramel as well.

T: Surprised by how chocolatey this beer is, very nice. There is also some brown sugar and some slightly sweet dark fruit, plums came to mind at the time.

S: Medium to full bodied, low carbonation, but very smooth and easy drinking. No sign of the 10.50%.

O: A very nice beer, a great start to a mini-tasting that it was consumed at. Loved how chocolate forward it was mixed with with bourbon flavors.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2012 20:21:50 | More by mdaschaf
Photo of Spider889
Spider889

Ohio

3.8/5  rDev -10.6%
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.

Serving type: on-tap

05-31-2012 19:49:00 | More by Spider889
Photo of SpeedwayJim
SpeedwayJim

New York

3.73/5  rDev -12.2%
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.

Serving type: bottle

05-29-2012 01:16:09 | More by SpeedwayJim
Photo of ShanePB
ShanePB

Pennsylvania

3.98/5  rDev -6.4%
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.

Serving type: bottle

05-23-2012 00:04:05 | More by ShanePB
Photo of Treebs
Treebs

Illinois

4.38/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Straight from Sean's (Sean9689) kegerator. 2010 vintage served in a Portsmouth tulip.

A: Pours a jet black color, very thick, with a one finger thick brick of dark chocolate foam forming on the pour. It recedes slowly leaving behind some splotchy lace and oily stick.

S: Dark fruits and unsweetened chocolate are first on the nose with some oaky wood, light bourbon and some dark wheat bread malts.

T: Light bourbon and oak. Chocolate and sweet molasses with dark fruits and wheat malts. Very well integrated.

M: Smooth and creamy. The carbonation is on the medium to low end and works beautiful off the viscous and chewy body.

O: The age has really smooth out this beer into a chewy and decadent treat. Huge thanks to Sean for sharing this guy with all of us.

Serving type: on-tap

05-21-2012 12:49:08 | More by Treebs
Photo of corby112
corby112

Pennsylvania

2.68/5  rDev -36.9%
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.  

Serving type: bottle

05-19-2012 02:16:19 | More by corby112
Photo of schwaeh
schwaeh

Ohio

2.2/5  rDev -48.2%
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.

Serving type: bottle

04-24-2012 22:53:50 | More by schwaeh
Photo of cpetrone84
cpetrone84

Pennsylvania

3.6/5  rDev -15.3%
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.

Serving type: on-tap

04-10-2012 15:57:10 | More by cpetrone84
Photo of maximum12
maximum12

Minnesota

4.43/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to a generous BA named Adam, whose handle I've forgotten, for bringing this bottle to Darkness Day for us as part of a BIF. 22 oz. bomber, bottle 300/384, assumedly the 2010 vintage since it's been resting here in the quiet of my cellar for over a year.

Pours dark. Very dark. No stars. Nose is a crushing weight of bourbon, more thank I've had jammed into my septum in a while, sweet vanilla, sweetness that must be the brown sugar. Hothothot.

Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Apparition is a stout steeped liberally in bourbon, which tastes more like hard whiskey on this palate, but hey. Delicious bourbony vanilla is straddling this big stout in a harsh, grinding kind of move. The vanilla really pops beautifully. The brown sugar shows in a sweet depth doggying up the malts. Oak. Quite low in carbonation, but nobody here cares. Easy sipper, I could pour this in the system for a long time in small doses.

Lovely. There's that certain thing underlying this beer that excellent stouts have, that certain 'whoosh' in the malts that supports everything over it. Not terribly complex, but terribly tasty. Excellent beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-21-2012 04:49:17 | More by maximum12
Photo of PaulStoneAnchor
PaulStoneAnchor

California

3.73/5  rDev -12.2%
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.

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2011 06:58:30 | More by PaulStoneAnchor
Photo of JoEBoBpr
JoEBoBpr

Missouri

4.1/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter from a 22oz bottle.

A - Pours an oily dark dark black. Zero light comes through this beer. There is a thin head that really cant be measured that shows up as its poured vigorously. A nice swirl also brings up no head but a thin film that recedes quickly. The slight carbonation is a nice slightly tan cream colored. (4.0)

S - Starts off with sweet Bourbon notes. Nice sweetness. Definitely some brown sugar and molasses. There is a surprising roasted notes that overtakes some of the sweetness around the middle of the nose. I've never had the base beer but this is really chocolaty so I can imagine that the base beer ha some of these same qualities. Very nice nose. (4.5)

T & M - Starts off with an interesting cocoa powder note. Not much Bourbon to speak off. The sweetness that is perceived in the nose is a bit subdued. but not too much. There is definitely some more coffee and chocolate notes than what I expected. Very nice. Im surprised its note as boozy as others. Don't get me wrong there is definitely some brown sugar and molasses sweetness and some slight alcohol sweetness but no real burn. Quite nice. Mouthfeel is slick and oily with a nice medium-full body. (4.0)(4.0)

O - Overall this is a good effort. Its no the best BBA beer I've had but its still pretty good. (4.0)

Serving type: bottle

12-11-2011 00:06:01 | More by JoEBoBpr
Photo of Phyl21ca
Phyl21ca

Quebec (Canada)

4/5  rDev -5.9%
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.

Serving type: bottle

12-08-2011 21:05:20 | More by Phyl21ca
Photo of Arbitrator
Arbitrator

California

2.45/5  rDev -42.4%
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.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2011 03:54:35 | More by Arbitrator
Photo of nrbw23
nrbw23

Ohio

4.4/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a pitch black color with a fairly thin brown head. Head is gone pretty quick, turning into a thin ring around the edge of the glass and leaving next to no lacing.

S- Picking up a ton of bourbon. Roasted malts, vanilla, wood, darker fruits, and a touch of herbal hops.

T- Follows the nose really well. I'm digging the bourbon aspect of this one a lot. Roasted malts, very light coffee, chocolate, raisins, vanilla and wood. Very nice.

M- Full in body and low carbonation if any.

O- Very solid brew. I enjoyed this one quite a bit.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2011 11:26:02 | More by nrbw23
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Dark Apparition - Bourbon Barrel Aged from Jackie O's Pub & Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 182 ratings.