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Dark Horse Bourbon Barrel Aged Plead The 5th - Dark Horse Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Dark Horse Bourbon Barrel Aged Plead The 5thDark Horse Bourbon Barrel Aged Plead The 5th

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BA SCORE
100
world-class

1,967 Ratings
THE BROS
97
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,967
Reviews: 310
rAvg: 4.55
pDev: 7.91%
Wants: 1,842
Gots: 475 | FT: 46
Brewed by:
Dark Horse Brewing Company visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
Russian Imperial Stout aged in bourbon barrels.

(Beer added by: MbpBugeye on 07-25-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Dark Horse Bourbon Barrel Aged Plead The 5th Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,967 | Reviews: 310 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Pwnzilla
5/5  rDev +9.9%

Pwnzilla, Jan 14, 2014
Photo of fthegiants
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

fthegiants, Jan 14, 2014
Photo of magictacosinus
4.44/5  rDev -2.4%

A big thanks to jdhowe for sharing this recently. 2013 vintage. Note that as of this writing I have not tried the regular Plead the 5th yet, but I intend to crack it open eventually. Poured out of a 12oz bottle into a snifter.

As expected, pours a thick syrup of a stout, with a treacle-like consistency that appears to end as sludge into the glass, save for some minor mocha-colored foam that shows yet gently dissipates throughout the course of consumption. Super viscous, oily, and resinous if I ever saw a stout of this caliber before - my favorite part was the tremendous amount of scattered shrapnel lacing that coated all sides of the glass every time that I would give this a good swirl. Normally extremely syrupy looking RIS offerings are not my favorite, but this one contains a bit of prowess and charm overall in its liqueur like properties. Very memorably intimidating.

Wow! That's an extremely sweet bourbon aged stout, but for reasons you'd perhaps least expect. Yes, there's some classic bourbon sweet notes of toffee, vanilla, and cinnamon at the back, but the front is chock filled with the sweetness of caramel soaked dark cherries, blackcurrant, and figs, as well as obvious notes of roasted chocolate, coffee, and molasses. Impressive barrel spices and non-fruit make up the mid flavor, releasing notes of licorice, tobacco, leather, and violets throughout. Very stimulating stuff, with the only major drawback being the high presence of booze throughout, notably stinging the nostrils at every whiff. Sweet, but pretty restrained. Still extremely complex and memorable, as this kinds of beers must be.

I expected a boozy, sweet, barrel laden RIS from the aroma, but instead after my first sip I came across, to my knowledge, the most balanced and perhaps easy-going offering of its kind. It's a big beer, no doubt, but doesn't make that clear throughout. Vivid, rich notes of fudge, chocolate nibs, caramel, and molasses sugar coat dark fruit notes (mainly of dark cherries and prunes) as the beer soon melts with many of the barrel spices mentioned earlier. Vanilla and toffee are obvious, but tobacco, leather, and pepper are also very present. Earthy and roasted, with some sweetness and fruitiness that makes it feel robust in character. Finishes medium-bodied, with a dry, bready flavor awash with spices and sweetness that cleanse the palate overall. Stupidly balanced, as far as the style goes - this provides the drinker with all the best aspects within it without one of them overpowering the other. If it weren't for the high booze, I could certainly have more of this in one evening.

This is an amazing beer, and absolutely worth checking out, but I enjoyed it for many surprisingly different reasons from what I'd initially heard. It's rich, robust, and contains all of the barrel characteristics I enjoy best in these beers, but it doesn't smack you upside the head doing it, which I enjoy. No clue how this would age, but it's pretty extraordinary fresh. Don't go too much out of your way to get some, but all fans of the style should have it at least once.

magictacosinus, Jan 14, 2014
Photo of Boston_Steve
4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

Boston_Steve, Jan 13, 2014
Photo of DerekMorgan
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

DerekMorgan, Jan 13, 2014
Photo of JohnG190
4.91/5  rDev +7.9%

Thanks MichiganderHB! 2013 vintage. Pours jet black with a super thin, mocha head that quickly fades to a thin ring around the glass. Good lacing. Complex aromas of vanilla, raisin, bourbon, molasses, and dark chocolate. This is one of the best BA stouts I've ever smelled! Smooth dark chocolate hits the front of the palate followed by caramel,vanilla, and dark fruits. The bourbon isn't as pronounced as in other BA stouts and it's extremely smooth and mellow. As it warms the chocolate really comes out with hints of toffee and molasses. Finish is chocolate with a hint of bourbon heat. Full bodied and incredibly smooth. Not much carbonation to speak of. Sweet finish. Overall, this is the best example of a bourbon barrel stout I've yet had. Simply outstanding!

JohnG190, Jan 12, 2014
Photo of Houser
4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

Houser, Jan 12, 2014
Photo of tut2528
4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

tut2528, Jan 12, 2014
Photo of Danielr26
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

Danielr26, Jan 12, 2014
Photo of jdhowe
4.55/5  rDev 0%

2013 vintage bottle courtesy of JAS45678 (thanks!), split with magictacosinus.

A: Pours a mostly still, oily, opaque black with some evidence of carbonation but little head.

S: Big notes of bourbon, vanilla, and oak. Hints of dark fruit and cherries and leather. A slight buttery oak character is evident and gets stronger as it warms. The base stout isn't too evident in the aroma, but a definite sweetness and roastiness are underlying the stronger aromas.

T/M: This is a delicious and complex beer -- much nicer than the aroma. Bourbon, oak, and vanilla dominate up front, and then the base stout's coffee and chocolate arrive as the bourbon steps back a bit. Sweetness is provided by the malt as both chocolate and dark fruit flavors. The finish is smooth and mostly barrel character with a slight lingering coffee bitterness. Mouthfeel is thick and oily with light carbonation.

O: This is a great bourbon barrel aged stout. The buttery oak character in the aroma is slightly offputting, but the taste of this beer really makes up for it. I can't say that this is objectively better than regular Plead the 5th, which I love, but I definitely like this beer and am stoked that it comes in 12oz bottles.

jdhowe, Jan 12, 2014
Photo of Funkwich
4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

Funkwich, Jan 11, 2014
Photo of Zaximus
4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

Zaximus, Jan 11, 2014
Photo of DrewLikesBeer
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

DrewLikesBeer, Jan 10, 2014
Photo of analogchainsaw
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

analogchainsaw, Jan 10, 2014
Photo of JohnParadee
4.35/5  rDev -4.4%

Poured from tap into a small tulip glass. Deep dark black. Thin beige head, dissipates to minimal rim, lots of tiny bubbles. Awesome lacing & retention. Beautiful nose of chocolate & coffee, burnt roasted malt. On the palate, roasted chocolate and coffee flavors dominate. Not as boozy as others. Alcohol is almost unnoticeable, but strong carbonation. Overall, a delightful experience.

JohnParadee, Jan 10, 2014
Photo of pcarney8
5/5  rDev +9.9%

pcarney8, Jan 10, 2014
Photo of HoppyKilaMonster
4.28/5  rDev -5.9%

12oz bottle. 2013 Vintage
A- Pours near pitch black with a nice cream colored head.

S-Creamy bourbon. Nice vanilla undertones.

T-Bourbon up front, followed closely by oak, vanilla, and finally a slight alcoholic burn.

M-Smooth and creamy. A little high on the carbonation for a barrel aged stout.

O- A well done brew. Easy drinker, but that little alcohol kick at the end lets you know it is an 11% beast.

HoppyKilaMonster, Jan 10, 2014
Photo of mattsmith413
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

mattsmith413, Jan 09, 2014
Photo of santa216
5/5  rDev +9.9%

santa216, Jan 09, 2014
Photo of Axnjxn
4.41/5  rDev -3.1%

2013 vintage into an old hickory snifter. bottling date dec 5 2013 bottle # 4724 / 4813

Pours a pitch black with a big inch and a half thick beige head. Smell is very big no bourbon...nice! the taste and feel is so creamy and the bourbon is very big up front...bigger than bourbon county even. Alcohol heat is also very pronounced...this is a big beer for sure! very full bodied, on point. the creaminess feel is so amazing, my god.

overall lives up to the hype as a world class beer....sweet!

Axnjxn, Jan 09, 2014
Photo of Phil_H
5/5  rDev +9.9%

Phil_H, Jan 08, 2014
Photo of Dicers
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

Dicers, Jan 08, 2014
Photo of shredder83
4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

shredder83, Jan 08, 2014
Photo of blackrim
5/5  rDev +9.9%

blackrim, Jan 07, 2014
Photo of schiltron
4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

schiltron, Jan 07, 2014
Dark Horse Bourbon Barrel Aged Plead The 5th from Dark Horse Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 1,967 ratings.