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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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1,842 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,842
Reviews: 306
rAvg: 4.55
pDev: 7.91%
Wants: 1,780
Gots: 460 | FT: 39
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:  Latest | 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: 1,842 | Reviews: 306 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of GrindFatherBob

New York

4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

06-02-2013 13:21:17 | More by GrindFatherBob
Photo of hollywood_15063


4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

03-27-2014 06:22:36 | More by hollywood_15063
Photo of SadMachine

New Jersey

4.65/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A- Pours a viscous black with a finger of mocha head that slowly recedes to a film. No lacing is left on the glass.

S- Smells of sweet molasses, dark roasted malts, charred oak, vanilla from the bourbon, and figs/dates. There are also hints of coffee and booze. Really smells wonderful!

T- The flavor opens sweet, with molasses, chocolate, and candied figs and dates. This gives way to tons of bitter roast/coffee, bitter baker's chocolate, vanilla, and charred oak. There's also a bit of a dry, vinous bite on the back of the tongue in the finish. It's very impressive how this brew toys with being cloyingly sweet and then excessively bitter, but manages to use this to stay balanced. A bit of the bourbon comes through, but a little more would make this almost perfect.

M- The mouthfeel is thick and viscous, coating the tongue, with just enough carbonation. Only a mild amount of boozy heat comes through, which is impressive considering the 14% abv.

O- Overall I am thoroughly impressed with this beer! I love more roasty/coffee forward stouts, and this delivers, while adding sweet and charred flavors from the barrel!

Serving type: bottle

12-06-2013 05:47:35 | More by SadMachine
Photo of lupercmda

North Carolina

4/5  rDev -12.1%

04-11-2014 03:18:25 | More by lupercmda
Photo of atone315


4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

10-20-2012 07:55:50 | More by atone315
Photo of CrellMoset


4.13/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle courtesy of a recent trade - thanks! Poured in to a tulip.

Appearance: Pours an onyx, deep and pool like, viscous but at the same time oily and slick looking. A moderately vigorous pour yields a surprising amount of head for a barrel aged, 14.0% abv brew - about three quarters of a finger of foamy espresso with surprising retention sits atop the body, about as thick as the inky sludge it's sitting on top of. It ultimately fades in to a similarly thick, foamy ring and a few sparse wisps of surface bubbles, with the persistence of the former being somewhat of a mystery, as even direct exposure to light reveals no internal carbonation. Half a point off for the inability of this one to hold any modicum of lacing on the sides of the glass, but half a point only given the aforementioned factors weighing against this one's ability to do so.

Aroma: Rich, but still somewhat subdued. Smoke, roast, hints of fruit, and a very smooth barrel presence belies absolutely no hint of alcohol spice or heat, even as this one warms, which is a definite plus. There's an interesting juxtaposition here between a lot of light fruity notes - cherries, sour apple, almost bordering upon jolly rancher-ish notes at times - and the deep, velvety smokiness of the malts and (I presume) some hint of barrel char. The latter also obviously compliments the bourbon and other barrel notes, which suggest strong vanilla and hints of cinnamon, along with a persistent but very heavy and low-in-the-register woodiness.

Taste: A slightly different tasting -bal RIS than I expected, heavy on the extremes. What I mean is that, typically, -bal RISs are bourbon, chocolate, and coffee bombs; and, while this one has all three of those components, none of them really dominate, or are even that prevalent. This one is more about fruit notes at the top of the register, smoky, charred malts at the bottom, and flashes of intermittent barrel notes filling in the blanks. It's unique, a little different, and still pretty good. Deep espresso roast and fudge brownie notes are definitely still present, mind you, but they're balanced by a slew of raisins, figs, cherries, dates, and even berry notes - way high up in the mouth, in a way that leaves that tinge of acidity.

Mouthfeel: Low carbonation, but what is here is well-embedded, smooth, creamy, and works perfectly with the flavor components. The end result hits all the right notes.

Drinkability: Fantastic. A really solid beer, with a very interesting flavor profile, despite the 14.0% abv.

Serving type: bottle

03-31-2012 23:49:36 | More by CrellMoset
Photo of Stinger80OH


4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

07-07-2012 16:19:59 | More by Stinger80OH
Photo of Davepoolesque


4/5  rDev -12.1%

01-15-2014 21:34:27 | More by Davepoolesque
Photo of Fettpopps


4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

03-22-2014 22:54:57 | More by Fettpopps
Photo of jampics2


4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

12-20-2011 02:30:13 | More by jampics2
Photo of Kopfschuss


4.25/5  rDev -6.6%

06-25-2014 07:50:49 | More by Kopfschuss
Photo of inlimbo77


4.75/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle, Vintage 2011
Hunahpu's snifter

A: Pours completely black. Initially I don't get much head, just a faint ring of dark tan around the edges of the glass. There is some carbonation because I can see it along with the alcohol feet. Some dark lacing sheets on the swirl. Also, this conjures up a little more of that dark mocha head.

S: Smelled it as soon as I opened it. Very pronounced bourbon notes: vanilla and oak aromas. Also pulling some alcohol esters and dark fruits. Rum soaked raisin etc. Some char as well.

T: This is an incredible beer. Up front I get some deep, dark chocolate bitterness on the tip of the tongue. It's like high quality chocolate that you let dissolve in your mouth. In the mid-mouth you get more of the bourbon hints. Vanilla, toffee, and caramel for sure. The flavors really develop as the sip goes on and on. I am amazed that it's as smooth as it is. There is definitely booze there but it's hidden pretty well aside from the normal warming in the back of the throat. The sweetness helps with this I assume too.

M: Full bodied brew. Syrupy mouth coating in a good way.

O: I have to go super high with this one. Solid A moving towards A+ for sure.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2012 19:29:51 | More by inlimbo77
Photo of peensteen

Ontario (Canada)

4.45/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Liam, 2012 bottle.

Nearly jet black, ring of tan head with no lace to speak of. Smell an incredible mix of bourbon, oak and roast, lots of vanilla and chocolate, a bit of coconut, coffee grinds and a bit of alcohol, similar to BCBS in the nose. Taste is bourbon and oak, coconut, vanilla, chocolate, fudge and a light sweetness, roasted malt with some dry coffee in the finish. Lightly carbonated, medium-full body. Incerdibly solid, up there with some of the better BA stouts, will actively seek out more of this stuff.

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2013 22:01:52 | More by peensteen
Photo of Adamostella


4/5  rDev -12.1%

01-22-2013 00:20:33 | More by Adamostella
Photo of Dicers


4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

01-08-2014 17:00:40 | More by Dicers
Photo of vonnegut21

New York

4.51/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a deep, creamy black with a half finger of mocha head which dissipates quickly.

S: Bourbon, vanilla, caramel and dark chocolate notes.

T: Roasted malt, bitter chocolate, and bourbon up front are followed by caramel and vanilla. Slight hop bitterness rounds things out nicely.

M: Nice and thick with an excellent, creamy mouthfeel. This is amazing on the palate.

O: A really, really excellent barrel aged stout. Maybe not quite on Bourbon County's level, but this is up there with the best BA stouts out there. I'll definitely seek out more.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2013 01:28:44 | More by vonnegut21
Photo of MinorThreat


4/5  rDev -12.1%

01-07-2013 03:47:40 | More by MinorThreat
Photo of macrosmatic


4.66/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to maximumu13 for this particular bottle. 2012 vintage. Reviewed from notes. Poured from wax-sealed 12 oz. bottle into a Russian River pint glass.

A: Pours an opaque, nearly-jet black. Forms a thin brown head with low visible carbonation.

S: Oak, bourbon, chocolate, sweet vanilla and woody with tobacco, rum-soaked raisins and other such dark fruit. Very nice.

T: Follows the nose. Chocolate, coffee malts with big bourbon flavors over the oaky vanilla, rum raisins, roasty bittered malt. This is really tasty.

M: Thick, heavy body, creamy mouthfeel. Low carbonation, and the alcohol presence is fairly heavy as expected.

O: Wow. This one lived up to the hype, and perhaps surpassed it as far as I'm concerned. I'm very impressed. Highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2013 05:19:08 | More by macrosmatic
Photo of Zach136


4.25/5  rDev -6.6%

02-20-2013 04:19:07 | More by Zach136
Photo of VeganUndead


4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

12-06-2013 14:54:34 | More by VeganUndead
Photo of mrebeka


4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

12-30-2011 06:55:29 | More by mrebeka
Photo of HopStoopid120


5/5  rDev +9.9%

12-05-2011 05:14:14 | More by HopStoopid120
Photo of beergorrilla


4.75/5  rDev +4.4%

12-10-2012 12:35:33 | More by beergorrilla
Photo of JRod1969

New York

4.5/5  rDev -1.1%

02-05-2013 03:23:44 | More by JRod1969
Photo of SpdKilz


4.25/5  rDev -6.6%

01-18-2013 04:05:29 | More by SpdKilz
Dark Horse Bourbon Barrel Aged Plead The 5th from Dark Horse Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 1,842 ratings.