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Czar Brew - Russian Imperial Stout Aged In Oak Bourbon Barrels - Sprecher Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Czar Brew - Russian Imperial Stout Aged In Oak Bourbon Barrels
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BA SCORE
83
good

113 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 113
Reviews: 47
rAvg: 3.67
pDev: 15.53%
Wants: 7
Gots: 14 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Sprecher Brewing Company visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: rallison on 08-05-2007)
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Ratings: 113 | Reviews: 47 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of beckje01
1.83/5  rDev -50.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

From notes:

Pours a black beer with a decent brown head. There is some action in there but not a lot. The nose is very similar to their other BA beers in this series just the barrel is coming through is what I've decided at this point so it feels like there isn't anything to back up the bourbon notes. The flavor is just all barrel just as you would think from the nose. Really seems like dirty watery bad bourbon. This can't be a good RIS it can't stand up to the barrel at all.

Photo of redleg411
2/5  rDev -45.5%

Photo of womencantsail
2.05/5  rDev -44.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

Thanks? to Greg for sharing this...

A: The beer pours almost black in color with a finger of tan head.

S: When the first thing you smell is butter, you're rarely in for anything good. Lots of butter, a bit of roast and bourbon, a touch of vanilla, and some sourness. Not sure whether that's vinegar or just too much booze.

T: The flavor is much the same. Heavy on the butter with a more pronounced sourness and even more booze. Light bourbon and vanilla flavors with lots of roast and oak, some coffee is also there.

M: Medium bodied with very low carbonation.

O: This was a nice contribution to the dump bucket.

Photo of JDV
2.1/5  rDev -42.8%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

bottle courtesy of Beerlando
1 L bottle shared with 5 others. Pours black with a light tan head. Smell is sweet with lots of fake vanilla extract coming through, and wet cardboard more so than roasty malt. A touch of bourbon but not a very great nose. Taste was worse, and had notes of Soy sauce, was quite tart, thin and drying, and not at all like a bourbon barrel imperial stout. I'd stay far, far away from this.

Photo of don1481
2.25/5  rDev -38.7%

Appearance: Pours a jet black with a cocoa colored head that retains for a bit. Leaves a small amount of lacing on the side.

Smell: big nose with a variety of vanilla, bourbon, coffee smells.

Taste: ...and here is where this falls apart. Such a thin, watered down taste. Where are all the delicious bits from the nose?? Beyond disappointed.

Mouthfeel: for something that tastes this thin it leaves a surprisingly thick feeling.

Overall: so tempted to drain pour this. Something does not add up here.

Photo of oakbluff
2.33/5  rDev -36.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

One litre swing top bottle- been hanging onto this big boy for a couple of years. Thought it was time to crack it. Pours out the usual muddy dark, minimal head. Nose- mostly dark fruits coming through, some vanilla. Taste- again stewed fruits. Very minimal roast or barrel characteristics, except for a slight sour tang. One dimensional, thin bodied, and just not a good beer at all. Disapointing considering the price point. Fail.

Photo of GABrew
2.75/5  rDev -25.1%

Photo of BeerZack
2.8/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Thanks to JDV for sharing this big swing-top.

Pretty black in color, with dark brown edges. Thin head leaves decent lace.

Smells of caramel, marzipan, make it seem more like an aged barleywine than an Imperial stout. Some alcohol smell.

Sweet, almost cloying, yet sour, soy vinegar, some cardboardiness.

Tastes like it could have been a bad bottle, maybe just stored improperly, but it seems pretty oxidized and thin.

Photo of camil1mj
2.9/5  rDev -21%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bought this past Spring while I was in Madison, WI. Poured at cellar temp into my Founders snifter.

A: Deep, dark, brown. Foamy, 1 finger thin head. Minimal lacing.

S: Sweet and roasty with a faint alcoholic finish.

T: Immediate sugary sweetness nose followed by some roasted malt that leads to some bourbon undertones. The sweetness dominates the overall taste of this one.

M: Very thin for the style. Medium carbonation.

O: One of the weaker BA stouts I have had. Too thin and too sweet.

Photo of travloh
2.95/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from bomber to snifter. This is only the 2nd RIS I have ever had. The 1st one I enjoyed very much.

Pours a motor oil black with a tan head that looks almost like you could make a sand castle out of it.

The first smell is coffee, then a roasted, smokey odor. I also get a sour essence coming through.

This stuff is questionable, there is a sour tone that comes through. Leaves a bitter coffee aftertaste. Halfway through the glass I have to confess, I wish it were gone. Just not very good, period. I can taste the bourbon influence, as this stuff is aged in bourbon barrels. Just because you CAN doesn't mean you SHOULD. The thought of a beer sitting in some warehouse in a skanky old Jack Daniels cast-off is not appealing.

I'm not buying this again, and i am so glad I tried the other brand of RIS before this one, because the chances are good this would have turned me off to the whole style.

Photo of CaptainNomihodai
3/5  rDev -18.3%

Photo of hansenm72
3/5  rDev -18.3%

Photo of atone315
3/5  rDev -18.3%

Photo of osuskin
3/5  rDev -18.3%

Photo of JohnnyK
3/5  rDev -18.3%

Photo of Crosling
3/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

1.0 L Bad Boy. Dark brown color with a small head with a very light tan shade to it. Nose is fairly dynamic and shows some toasted wood, coconut, vanilla, cocoa, roast, fruit, but also a little funk. Flavor doesn't match the complexity of the nose and lacks richness. Very light malts, with light hints of chocolate. Mainly dominated by the barrel, but unfortunately there is some unwelcome contamination with the brew. It's fairly sour and funked and doesn't pair well with the delicacies of a BBA IS.

Photo of barnzy78
3/5  rDev -18.3%

Photo of emerge077
3.13/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Opened this with a few friends, after picking it up in Milwaukee a few weeks ago. Unfortunately it seemed that something had gone awry... definitely oxidized, and developing tart astringent flavors. No date on the label, i'm guessing it was last years batch. No sound when opened. Sprecher should cap these instead of using a swingtop, and wax that if they have to. I think a compromised seal may be the culprit here.

Pours a dark brown, and black in the glass. It doesn't really look thick or viscous, more like a porter almost. The tan foam was scant, dispersing into a frothy ring of bubbles, and a wispy skim across the dark surface.

Aroma had telltale soy and clay notes of oxidation creeping into the sweet vanilla notes of the bourbon barrel.

Sweet and sticky, some vanilla and tart cherry astringency. Fairly light bodied for a barrel-aged RIS. There was a moderate bourbon flavor, and a stout buried in there somewhere, but it was overshadowed by the cherry skin tartness.

No one could finish a glass, but I drank most of mine for the sake of this review.
Will re-review if I can find a vintage dated bottle.

Photo of KFBR392
3.15/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pour with a light to medium bodied thickness. Could see the dark brown color on the pour but was black once accumulated in the glass. Light brown head formed on the pour which subsided and was non existent while drinking.

Smell: A lot of bright coffee aromas and some chalky malt. Hops burst through and seem to throw off many of the darker accents. The sweetness just blankets over many of the more interesting accents here.

Taste: I kind of expected the flavor to be erratic but this had many more traditional BA stout accents then I expected. Bubbly hop front with a good bitter bite. The front and beginning of the body are the best parts of this brew. Coffee, milk chocolate, light vanilla and caramel, and some average bourbon accents. There seems to be some disconnect between the flavors here. The finish is confused, some chalky bourbon and malt which gets lost. There are some accents here which want to finish strong, but bizarrely just fade away into a watery finish.

Mouthfeel: For an RIS, probably on the light side for mouth feel. The palette seems to beg for more. Does not drench the palette like the elite RIS's do.

Overall: Comes off overall pretty average, slightly forgettable. Not something I would get again, but not something that should be avoided.

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of ohiobeer29
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of FlandersNed
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of GallowsThief
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of BrownAleMale
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%

Photo of TonyTalon
3.25/5  rDev -11.4%

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Czar Brew - Russian Imperial Stout Aged In Oak Bourbon Barrels from Sprecher Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 113 ratings.