Dark Apparition - Vanilla Bean Rum Barrel - Jackie O's Pub & Brewery

Not Rated.
Dark Apparition - Vanilla Bean Rum BarrelDark Apparition - Vanilla Bean Rum Barrel

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

89 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 89
Reviews: 44
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 16.62%
Wants: 106
Gots: 19 | FT: 1
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: MbpBugeye on 02-05-2011

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 89 | Reviews: 44
Reviews by rye726:
Photo of rye726
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Around $20 if I remember correctly. Twenty-two ounce bottle served at room temp. Poured into a pint glass. Nice color and dark tan head. Not a lot in the nose. Dark malts, rum and vanilla. Taste also lacks complexity. Nice roasty and sweet flavors complimented by barrel. Thin body.

More User Reviews:
Photo of Brenden
3.58/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer is dark brown in color, nearly black, with a small, creamy tan head. Retention is good and some nice lacing is left clinging to the glass.
Vanilla is all over the noise, actually a little bit cloying. Wood and smoke are also present. The malts almost get muted by all the sweetness and the alcohol, the rum notes adding to the confusion a bit. This is a nice aroma that just gets overrun a bit.
The flavor is an odd mix of smoke and wood with more of a charcoal taste coming though mixing with something of a citrus tang. This one's actually a bit confusing and I just think the elements don't mingle as well as they could, making this one somewhat tasty but also somewhat chaotic. This is just one where the things meant to make the beer special overwhelm it instead.
The mouthfeel is smooth and the body fills out with each sip without getting filling. Levels of carbonation are appropriate for it to work.
This is one that has a great base but is run over by the vanilla and rum. It does make me interested in trying other variations of it. That aside, just because it's not great doesn't mean it's not good. I still like it.

Photo of SpeedwayJim
2.98/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

2011 Vintage. Bomber 221/225. Poured into a Cigar City snifter. Shared with schen9303. Kinda just forgot about this one for a while.

Pours thick, viscous, and black. No head and very little lace. Oily, thick legs though. Looks every bit the big beer.

Nose is subtle booze, some mild vanilla, fudge, and roasted malt ashiness. Ok but a bit of a letdown given the robustness of the appearance.

If the nose was a letdown, the taste made this one take an even larger turn for the worse. Vanilla is only present towards the back and a touch in the aftertaste. Rum barrel aging coupled with the base beer gives this one an awkward tartness. Some roasted malt and fudge rescue this a bit in the middle but finish is too boozy for the overall taste. Not very good. As it warms, the vanilla peaks out a bit more, but its still dominated by an awkward non-infected tartness.

Medium bodied and too carbonated. Oily and spritzy in the mouth and boozy and slick on the finish. Filmy and sticky aftertaste. Again, average but I expected more from the initial appearance.

Another Dark Apparition variation that didn't live up to the hype. Though this might be a bit of my fault for aging the vanilla presence out of this beer. Still, just barely average and definitely not worth the fuss.

Photo of nickd717
2.43/5  rDev -36.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Bomber thanks to the late (on BA) chswimmer on his birthday. The man has a liver of steel.

Black as the night in color with a one finger tan head.

Huge vanilla and rum on the aroma with mild roast and chocolate.

The flavor is just too unbalanced with vanilla bean and rum overwhelming everything else. Some oak and chocolate hide in the background.

A little syrupy with carbonation on the low side.

Disappointing. Goes to show you can just mix a bunch of intense flavors and throw them in a barrel to make a good beer. Well sometimes you can, but not always. Yes I am giving a rating like this to a -bal aged imperial stout from a hyped-up brewery. Deal with it.

Photo of Alieniloquium
2.53/5  rDev -34.3%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

650 mL bottle poured into a snifter. 2012 bottle #101/240. Reviewed from notes.

Appearance - Black and transparent at the edges. No head. Looks flat.

Smell - Rum, chocolate, and fudge. Tons of vanilla. Nice.

Taste - Lots of vanilla with a nice rum barrel. Chocolate and a consistent lactic sourness. Very odd. Really ruins what was potentially a good beer.

Mouthfeel - Sour. Medium heavy. The sourness kills. Intentional?

Overall - Really disappointing. I wanted to enjoy this. The bottle wasn't that old when we consumed it. Just soured. What's strange is that it's such a clean sourness. Almost makes me wonder if Jackie O's did it on purpose, although I can't fathom why.

Photo of akorsak
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks Deuane for sharing this one. Lucky me for picking it out...A 650 mL bomber.

A: The stout is a dark brown color, thick and murky enough to resemble blackness but not quite there. A tan colored head sits handsomely atop the brew.

S: Sweet vanilla beans, sturdy, stand out in the nose. It even goes so far as to crowd out the stout body. Rum adds a fruitier aspect but the vanilla is the clear winner.

T: Thankfully the taste delivers more than just the intense vanilla. While there, the beans don't play such a forceful role. The rum barrel adds an interesting tandem of oaken strength and sickly sweet booze. I'm not a bug rum fan, so the flavor requires a few sips to get used to. There is plenty of stout running around as well, bold chocolates and burnt grains. The dark roasted aspects go well with the vanilla but the rum seems to be the odd man out, struggling to coalesce. Still good though.

M: The mouthfeel is pleasantly sweet, the vanilla smoothing out most of the rough edges of both the stout and the barrel.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

black as night with a deep, dark color that no light could penetrate. Nice chocolate head of about an inch came up initially but then settled down to a bare top that just looked like an evil pit of doom The aroma was rich with blackstrap molasses,vanilla beans,hints of alcohol and a ton of roasted malts, interesting, I must go in fora closer look. The flavor was equally as rich, dare I say wonderful Super sweet notes here of vanilla, molasses, hints of oak and a touch of almost bourbon as it warms. This was an amazingly complex beer. Super full bodied with that huge feel that you really only find in the best of the RIS's, you know what I mean. A huge beer that you know is every bit as strong as you thought it would be, but for some reason is just soo damn smooth, you just cannot stop drinking it.

Photo of buschbeer
4/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 PINT 6 FL. OZ. bottle
Served in a snifter
2012 release
Bottle 176/240

A - It is black as coal. Two inches of mocha head rest lazily on top.

S - They is definitely a dark fruit thing going on. I get some plum, molasses, and the slightest hints of vanilla.

T - The taste continues the plum theme. There is also some mellow roasted malt. I get kind of a coffee finish.

M - Full

O - This is a fruity stout. I like it. Two years has served it well. I really need to get to Jackie O's.

Photo of DavoleBomb
4.13/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter. Bottle #66 of 225. 2011 vintage. This was my favorite beer on-tap at the release, but my palate was less than fresh by the time I got to this.

3.0 A: Black color. An aggressive pour yielded barely one finger of light brown head that fell pretty quickly, but did leave a bit of lacing behind.

5.0 S: This smells amazing! Really absolutely wonderful. What a difference a clean palate makes! The vanilla and rum are both present in ample amounts and work extremely well together. Lots of chocolate, a moderate roastiness, some oak and caramel, and overall sweet but far from cloying. Not a hint of alcohol.

4.0 T: The taste is several steps below the nose and the nose isn't really indicative of how this tastes. The aroma suggests a sweet, rich chocolately stout, but in reality, it's much drier than can be expected. There's a healthy moderate bitterness in here. Whether it comes from the dark malts alone or if there is some hop contribution is not apparent. The vanilla and rum are much less apparent than in the nose, but are still a feature. Moderate roastiness with much less chocolate, caramel, and overall sweetness than the nose. Again, alcohol is well hidden. It's still a tasty beer, just not an outstanding one.

3.5 M: The mouthfeel leaves much to be desired. While I wanted a thick, rich body, this only offers a medium one. The carbonation is on the lower end of acceptable. Super smooth, but could be creamier and a thicker body would certainly help with that.

4.0 D: I had a great time smelling this beer, a pretty good time tasting it, and a mediocre time sloshing it around in my mouth so I guess the experience is overall positive. I've never had the original Dark Apparition, but the bourbon barrel variety was much thicker and richer than this one. I'm not sure what happened in that rum barrel, but hopefully the next time this is released, the body is richer and the taste is deeper.

Photo of Thorpe429
4.37/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle opened by Pete. Served in a snifter.

Pours near black with a thin mocha head. Decent staying power after a swirl with some light legs. The nose is pretty nice with a good amount of chocolate and vanilla plus a nice warming boozy character. The flavor is really quite nice with some sugary vanilla and chocolate plus a bit of roast. There is a slight amount of dark rum character, though I don't think I'd pick this up if I hadn't known about it. Feel is ridiculously-creamy and smooth with a bit of back-end booze. Drinks really well; I really enjoyed this one.

Photo of jlindros
4.23/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Big thanks to rudzud for sharing.

Bottle 184/240, '12

Darker colored creamy 1/4 finger head, pitch black thick strains the glass kinda beer.

Nose is potent, rum and booze at first, the rum brings a fruity rum aroma, nice vanilla like barrel, figs raisin and dried stone fruit, light mineral like aroma, little roast and dark black malt, faint caramel and choc.

Taste starts rich, melting dark and expensive chocolate, and lots of vanilla, nice dark choc and some bitterness, light barrel like and a nice light rim fruity flavor. Some slightly metallic mineral flavors come through and combine with the rum barrel fruit to almost make it seem infected but I don't think it is. Some warming booze, a fruity booze quality from the rum barrel, and booze is semi subtle. A nice chocolate covered fruit taste too. Finish is sweet and fruity, more dark malts and vanilla.

Mouth is med to fuller bodied, lighter but decent carb, light warming booze.

Overall really interesting, nice dark malts that bring dark flavors and sweetness without the burnt, nice fruits from the rum. Booze is hidden well, pretty tasty beer and well done.

Photo of HosP
4.42/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from bottle release on 2/5/11. When I read about this beer, I couldn't wait to try it. My first sip was at breakfast after driving most of the night and sitting out in the cold waiting to get in. Luckily this beer didn't disappoint! Ended up getting a larger pour later that night in a snifter.

Poured dark in color with a darker brown head. Lacing clung in spots to the glass. Head hung around until almost the drink was gone.

Like you would expect, lots of vanilla notes throughout. Very sweet smelling, with some alcohol smell coming through late. Good roasted malts balances out the drink nicely. Hints of chocolate draw you in and hook you.

Just like the nose, very sweet vanilla flavor dominates the first part of the drink. Full flavors keep coming with dark fruits adding some depth. A little spice, maybe a little booze taste cut into the sweetness. Drink ends with some bitterness mixed with some coffee and chocolate flavors.

Still not quite a full body. Light carbonation. A tinge chewy to the mouth.

Overall a very enjoyable drink. Lots of flavors come through and give a lot of character to this beer. Very impressed with these barrel aged beers from Jackie O's. Could sit and drink this all night on a winter evening!

Photo of AgentZero
3.63/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I was a big fan of the Vanilla DA when I had it on tap, let's see how throwing it in a rum barrel turned out. Bottle shared by me at DLD.

A - Black beer, slightly viscous looking, with a small mocha head that faded to oblivion and left the sides of the glass clean.

S - I like the vanilla beers that Jackie O's has put out because they seem focused on vanilla. Big vanilla smell here with the usual slightly roasted malt character and a touch of coffee. Some barrel and an interesting rum smell.

T - There is a ton of vanilla and a lot of rum going into this. Rum seems pretty hard to work with, as it tends to overpower a lot of the other flavors and bury the base beer in an odd way. Wood and a little bit of sugar, this is a very sweet stout, with the rum making it seemingly sweeter. It's alright, but I like the regular vanilla version better.

M - Little bit thin, but nothing to really complain about. Soft carbonation and smooth.

O - Not a bad beer, but not great. It's fun to see Brad put unique combinations together and try things out. Not my favorite, but worth giving it a go.

Photo of sweemzander
2.31/5  rDev -40%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

22oz. bottle poured into a snifter. Another thanks to Kyle for sharing! Bottle #217/225.

(A)- Pours a thick pitch black color. Produced some transparent bubbles.

(S)- A dry oaky profile with caramel and bourbon notes.

(T)- Nice vanilla notes with wet cardboard and sawdust aspects. Hints at dark fruits. Weird.

(M)- A bit low of a carbonation level. Rather thin and almost vinous. A very earthy sawdust and cardboard flavor is very off-putting.

(D)- Not sure whats going on with this beer, but its very strange and disjointed. It goes to show you that tossing a beer into a barrel wont necessarily make it better.

Photo of womencantsail
3.92/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks for the bottle, Lee.

A: The pour is definitely black with a small layer of tan colored foam.

S: Rum and vanilla definitely shine through. Lots of roasted malt and dark chocolate with a touch of toffee and cocoa powder. A nice touch of coconut with some hazelnut aroma, too.

T: The flavor has a bit too much booze, but it is nice otherwise. Heavy on the rum, coconut, and vanilla. Good dark chocolate and roasted malts with mild coffee and toffee flavors.

M: Medium to full body with smooth carbonation.

O: If the flavor wasn't so boozy, this would have been a lot better.

Photo of Spider889
3.86/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at the release last weekend. Sucked waiting in line, but the beer was great and the day turned out to be fun for all.

This was a black beer with little head. Lace was not even an issue (and the head certainly must have suffered some) because they were only serving this in 4oz pours. I look forward to seeing this after a proper pour out of the bottle.

Smelled pretty darn good. The rum is there, though very subdued. I was really looking forward to this as I am more of a rum drinker than any other spirit, but I discovered the rum to be quite mild, and it has been suggested that most/all of the barrels used in the beers released this time around were from second use barrels. Nevertheless, the rum shows some trademark sweetness, providing more molasses notes than vanilla (as in bourbon). If you like vanilla though, fear not, for this beer was aged on vanilla beans, and the vanilla scent is quite potent. The aroma finishes almost bitter-sweet (that's the malt and whatever hops are involved showing their presence). Mild roast barley and bitter dark chocolate co-mingle with the emerging trademark sourness now found in nearly every Jackie O's offering.

Man oh man is this beer sweet. Near tootsie pop drizzled in Hershey syrup sweet (I say tootsie pop, cause the beer tastes faintly sour, wink). Loads of vanilla bruise the otherwise tough Dark Apparition. There is still plenty of black malt and mild coffee tones to the beer, but the barrel aging has really softened and rounded out this one. The beer finishes slightly sour, with some plum and green raisin. Not a bad flavor, though not exactly helpful to the aim of this beer either.

Really smooth, the vanilla and oak make this feel a percent or so less in alcohol. The rum is still understated imo, but c'est la vie.

Overall I say well-done Brad. I can only assume that over time your barrel aging expertise will improve and these beers will become better each time they're brewed.

Photo of FosterJM
4.32/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1303rd Review on BA
Bottle to Snifter
22 oz

2012 Vintage
Bottle #152/240

30th Birthday Party
Thanks to CPAbeer for this bday gift

App- Pitch black but had some brown highlights and a little red edges. A small brown head was there and then gone. Maybe a couple dots of cling.

Smell- A lot of vanilla and I was glad to smell that. I was hoping this would be up there in aromatics. A bit of sweetness from the Rum and a touch malty as well. No trace of the booze though.Fairly sweet and creamy.

Taste- The taste was very similar to the nose. A lot of creamy malts intermixed with the rich vanilla. A touch of fruits from the rum and a bit of oak from the barrels. Very flavorful.

Mouth- A bit of a thin medium body with a medium carbonation. Residual creamy fruits was all that remained. Not much vanilla.

Drink- A good beer but could been great IMO. Needed a bit more body and a bit less barrel time with more vanilla added but quite delicious.

Photo of Shaggy9356
4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle 115/225 from 2011 brewery release

Appearance - black as black can be, tan head, not much lacing

Smell: Wow..I could smell this all day. If this were a cologne it would replace Axe body spray as a chick magnet. Massive vanilla bean, some dark rum, I can only hope this comes through in the taste.

Taste: First taste is big vanilla, not cloying, just pure wonderful vanilla. The rum brings some astringency to the beer as Rum seems to do. The BA is nice and I'd love to try a non-BA version of this as well. This is a very good beer and an interesting one at that.

Drinkability: This has a sweetness that would nicely serve as dessert beer. It drinks best warm and I couldn't handle more than one glass per sitting. I think this beer needs a year on it for the flavors to really blend. Definitely worth a try now though.

Photo of dcloeren
2.48/5  rDev -35.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Thanks for sharing Josh

Poured a deep oil black.

The aroma is vanilla forward with some licorice and boozy rum.

The taste is run dominated from the beginning but completely saturated by half way through the sip. Very faint vanilla up front.

The mouth feel is extremely light with a touch of carbonation. Terrible mouthfeel and the finish is a cOmbination of burning and watery disappointment.

This beer was very disappointing. Watery, boozy (not in a good way) and hot. A combination of failures without a doubt.

Photo of nlmartin
1.74/5  rDev -54.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

This bottle was from 2012 release. The beer was lightly chilled and served in a snifter.

A- The body of the beer is black and oily looking with a ruby opaqueness to light. The head was a thin burn tan coloration. Whisp of lacing mark this beers passage from my glass.

S- Lightly roasted malt enters into the land of cocoa, far fainter vanilla aroma than I expected, sweet molassis and caramel notes, rum notes creep out, along with the oak, earthy notes creep around, very slight lactic notes.

T- The beer is dominated a lactic rum combination. Lightly roasted notes, a bit of cocoa, molassis sweetness. I am so let down!

M- The body of the beer is thin and boozey. The carbonation is low and wouldnt be an issue if the beer was a bit more robust.

O- I simply cannot approve or reccomend this beer. Jackie O's brews some good and on occasion great beers. I love alot of the beers I have tried at Jackie O's brewpub. Many times I find something gets lost in translation from the tap to the bottle. Hey guys a bit more QA is in order.

Photo of cosmicevan
4.2/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Notes taken from early 2012 (March?) from a bottle share i hosted with the local crew.

Thanks kindly to TheBeerologist for the trade.

a - pours jet black with a thin tan head. spotty lacing at best.
s - the rum is in the nose and vanilla beans are subtle.
t - flavor is malty with good vanilla flavoring and a hint of rum.
m - nice mouthfeel.
o - overall, the rum and vanilla help the base beer. pretty enjoyable compared to some of the others in the series that i have tried.

Photo of scottfrie
3.52/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle into matching Jackie O’s snifter. 2012 vintage, bottle 157 / batch 240. A warm thank you to HosP for sending me this years ago.

A: Pours black with a thin dirt brown film of a head that quickly disappeared into a soft collar. Streaky and soapy lacing was left down the glass.
S: Mellow notes of rum, chocolate, and whole vanilla bean. I get a touch of caramel and maybe some coffee as well. I never had this fresh (when I assume all the flavors were brighter), but I am pleasantly surprised at how much the vanilla still dominates the nose.
T: Rich flavors of chocolate, coffee and molasses hit first, followed by the rum barrel. The finish is strangely sweet and almost fruity, and I get notes of raisins, caramel, cola, and leather. The aftertaste is where the vanilla really comes through, and notes of whole vanilla bean, toasted marshmallows, and roasted coffee linger on my palate. Flavors definitely taste aged and slightly oxidized.
M: The carbonation was my least favorite part of this beer as it was spritzy and foamed up on my palate. Once it subsided though, the full body and slicky, greasy mouthfeel were fairly pleasurable to drink.
O: Great flavor but I think this was a little past its prime. Vanilla and rum still came through very well though. Thanks again, Mark.

Photo of orangesol
4.12/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another one from Deuane. Bottle number 41 / 225.

A - Pours deep brown, borders on black, with a nice one finger tall tan head leaving spotty lacing down the glass.

S - Smells of rich vanilla, chocolate, coffee, oak tannins, spicy run, and the ever present dark roasted malt. The vanilla is strong but it doesn't get to the point of being overpowering.

T - Starts off with a big dose of sweet vanilla slowly giving way to a mix of dark roasted malt, chocolate, butterscotch, dry oak tannins, spicy rum, and a bit of booze. The finish is a mix of sweetness and dark roast, lingering for some time.

M - Heavy body and flavor with moderate carbonation. Sweet, roasted, feel with plenty of it lingering through the finish.

O - Pretty damn good. Jackie O's really does know how to use rum barrels the right way. This one had a lot of sweetness but the other flavors did just enough to keep it in check.

Photo of AwYeh
4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Dark brown/black, with a foamy layer of tan head covering the beer. Light lacing throughout.

S: Vanilla and rum are both very noticeable here; this is a very sweet, slightly spicy smell. It's unique, distinct, and enjoyable, and as I worked my way through my pour I enjoyed just sitting back and smelling it at least as much as drinking it.

T: Vanilla beans come through in the beginning of the taste, with spicy rum on the finish. Both are very full flavors- there's no missing them while having this beer, and I suspect they cover up some chocolate and dark fruit flavors that would otherwise be more prevalent. There is a light, plummy tanginess similar to many other JO offerings.

M: Medium bodied, with light carbonation. Slightly sticky/syrupy.

D: I'm usually not a big fan of vanilla beers as I find them too sweet, so the vanilla/rum combination worried me going into this one. But, my fears were quickly laid to rest. It is still sweet, but complex and well-balanced; never approaching cloying. The alcohol is entirely hidden as well; it would be great to see this one again.

Photo of stakem
4.05/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I have been anxious to try this beer again. I havent had it since on tap at the release. Wow, it has been 6 months already. Last night an opportunity arose when some friends came to visit. Enjoyed with BAs CaptinRedBeard and ClockworkOrange.

Bomber, hand numbered 91/225 poured into a matching Jackie O's snifter. This brew appears black in color with a dark brown head. A swirl revives the quick dissolving cap that leaves spotty lacing effect on the glass. When held to the light, lighter brown clarity is noted around the edges.

The smell of this brew is sweet chocolate notes reminiscent of cocoa powder. Plenty of vanilla sweetness really makes the chocolate aroma pop. Across the back some of the alcohol starts to evolve with a tangy spirit aspect. The smell of this brew is quite pleasing. The vanilla bean inclusion really mixes well with the natural vanilla scents from barrel aging.

The taste is tangy with spirit infused alcohol. Lots of mildly roasty chocolate malt flavors sit below a plethora of vanilla bean sweetness. The flavor of this brew brings forth the first indications of the exaggerated vanilla flavoring that you can slightly tell that it has to be more than just the barrel character. The alcohol is lightly spicy across the back almost like cinnamon and toasted coconut. Once warm more oak and woodsy quality comes out along with a more intense focus of tangy alcohol.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest level of carbonation. It is excessively drinkable for 10.5%. The alcohol is very well integrated and even when warm never felt to me like it was in double-digit realm. A great balanced and enjoyable offering with spicy and woodsy flavors. I'm not completely sold on the idea of rum barrels but this was an enjoyable experience.

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Dark Apparition - Vanilla Bean Rum Barrel from Jackie O's Pub & Brewery
86 out of 100 based on 89 ratings.