B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher Oatmeal-Imperial Stout - Hoppin' Frog Brewery

Not Rated.
B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher Oatmeal-Imperial StoutB.O.R.I.S. The Crusher Oatmeal-Imperial Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

2,519 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,519
Reviews: 1,004
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 9.46%
Wants: 264
Gots: 518 | FT: 46
Brewed by:
Hoppin' Frog Brewery visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: klewis on 11-10-2006

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,519 | Reviews: 1,004
Photo of BYOBxMadman7X
1.11/5  rDev -73.8%
look: 1 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.25

Not good, the alcohol
Wasn't blended in well enough.

Photo of CharlieMurphy
1.89/5  rDev -55.3%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

A: Light motor oil. Pours just a skim of light brown head. Really kinda stagnant and flat looking. Even the small amount of head doesn't go down or change at all, like pond water.

S: Smells like a BMC lager at first wiff. Then it smells like very astringent Amaretto, with some nare burning varnish. Fucking gross.

T: Pretty much the same as the smell only slightly masked by some insignificant roastiness and english style bittering.

M: Putrid. Like swishing and swallowing chemicals.

O: Definitely something off with this bottle. It was just shy of flat and clearly smells like varnish. Can't apologize for hating this so much. Ends in a drain pour after 3 sips.

Photo of wisrarebeer
2.15/5  rDev -49.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

OK. I'm not one to review a beer that hundreds have already acclaimed but the bottle I'm currently drinking does not equate to BAs general rating.

The nose has hints of the addition of cheap fruit syrup and the taste is the same. Too sweet. Am I just not getting it?

Photo of wahsrek1987
2.16/5  rDev -48.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Look: Beautiful looking beer that is thick and dark as motor oil.

Smell: Rich, hearty smell.

Taste: Too much going on with this brew. The multitude of flavors is overwhelming. The flavors ultimately drown each other out. The aftertaste is powerful and nutty.

Feel: The feel is alright, but does not pair well with the taste.

Too complex.

Photo of sweemzander
2.23/5  rDev -47.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

22oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

(A)- Pours a thick pitch black color. Some brown bubbles, but otherwise no head formation.

(S)- A rich roasted component with a rather potent nutty peanut character. Hints of molasses and raisin.

(T)- Same as the smell. A weird nutty peanut aspect completely dominates what seems to be some sweet raisin and molasses behind it.

(M)- A bit high of a carbonation level with an off-putting peanut flavor and smell.

(D)- Very disappointed with this one. The very off-putting peanut flavor could be the beginnings of an infection, but I cannot be sure. This must be a fluke, because this seems to get rave reviews, but I am not seeing it with what is in front of me. I will re-review to be sure in the future.

Photo of Thads324
2.7/5  rDev -36.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

Pours a dark jet black. No head, just the thinnest tan ring around the edge. No lacing.
Smells like booze. Minimal other aromas, maybe a hint of roasted malt and sweetness.

Taste is super thin, watery, mild sweetness, molasses and alcohol. Nothing lingers. Really disappointing. As it warms it get bigger and has some chocolate and coffee flavors, but still unusually thin and watery.
Thin mouthfeel. Very watery, alcohol is prevalent but not something that gets in the way.

Big let down. Maybe the most watery stout ever. Not much flavor either. I don't get what went wrong here. I sipped it, tasted little. Let it warm to room temp and still got a watery, boozy miss that only got a hair more flavor and body...

Photo of thryn
2.87/5  rDev -32.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours deep brown and thick, looks black in the glass. small tan head fades fast. pretty.

chocolate, licorice, raisin and a bit of booze. really sweet nose, fruity, almost cherry? I want some bitterness to balance this out, and I'm not getting it.

I am sad to say I expected more from this beer. It's just too sweet. Licorice, a tiny bt of coffee, some chocolate, booze, and again, that cherrylike sweetness. weird. 2.5. It's good up front, and then it starts to taste a bit like cough syrup.

Feel is good. Smooth, heavy and slick. Minimal carbonation.

Drinkability is not high for me.

I'll finish this, but I won't have another. For those who like cherry and licorice flavors, or like your RISes on the sweet end, this might be worth a try. For those who prefer roastier, more bitter RISes, find a beer-loving friend to taste this with if you simply must try it.

Photo of marvin213
2.9/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pouring like syrup, this pitch black molasses concoction offers a continually foaming, dark brown head. The cap dissipates to a thin but solid layer. Though it initially looks a bit on the thick side, it's undoubtedly stout.

I smell that maple syrup I saw. It's sweet malts with a spoonful of oatmeal. It does smell a bit "Russian," a flavor I have yet to pinpoint in origin (I don't want to read the appropriate link on this site; I'll figure it out myself). I'm guessing it's an alcohol component. The aroma is nothing unique but, again, it's solid.

My senses did not fool me: it's too syrupy sweet and thick. I want a potent elixir when I reach for a RIS, but this is like syrup with oatmeal (not oatmeal with syrup). Certainly I will flirt with hyperbole, but this ain't far off from pouring rubbing alcohol in my Aunt Jemima. The oatmeal in this imperial oatmeal is relatively subtle to and in the background of the candy-like sweetness. It's not that it tastes bad but, still, I don't want to keep drinking it. I poured some of the big bottle into a pint glass; it's better served in a sampler.

I guess the sweetness feels good, but it's tart. With most big oatmeal stouts, it's fair to consider them like breakfast. This BORIS is sweeter than my beloved Danish rolls. I keep detecting the oatmeal, but barely...thank goodness it's there because it's an alcoholic sweet tart without it.

For such a highly acclaimed beverage, I'm disappointed. Maybe my Southern style sorely swings with Hoppin' Frog, but I've yet to really love one. All I've had come in big ol' bottles and, understandably, you expect more from those. I'm glad I tried it only to know it, but I will not be selecting another.

Photo of B33R501
2.9/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

i dont know. this was just not as good as i was expecting, gold medal gabf 2011? what do they know? hehe.

black, maybe the most black beer ive seen, real dark brown head. i liked the smoothness of the oats but my problem with the appearance and mouthfeel is the beer quickly went to a still, lifeless state in the glass. not any better in my convenience store coffee cup either. same thing i dont like about southern tier stouts. if you look like this, you better be samichlaus and up around 15% abv. sorry, no excuse for that.

big aroma of chocolate, the best part of the beer. thought i would absolutely love this, oh well.

my issues with the taste are, can a beer be too dark roasted, black malted? i didnt think so, but i know better now. this beer is way over the top with the darkness, the hops tried to break thru, but failed. really just tastes like bad, burnt, black coffee or espresso.

oh no, the darkness, the blackness. come to the light. come to the light.

i never need to try this again, obviously.

Photo of teromous
2.91/5  rDev -31.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: This beer pours velvet black. Even the head on this thing is dark! It's completely opaque, and the head is a thin dark brown. The head doesn't last long, and leaves only a ring with little foam bubble lily-pads.

S: I could smell it from my desk before even getting near it. It has a coffee smell. It smells like roasted nuts, and I get a bit of alcohol smell. It doesn't smell bad, so I'd put it about average.

T: Immediately I get a dark herbal and fruity flavor. Similar to figs and licorice. It has a lot of sweetness and has a roasted flavor but isn't bitter. There is definitely alcohol flavor in this one. It's not all that impressive, but there is some complexity to it. It probably just needs to age more before I drink it.

M: The mouthfeel is pretty good, it has a decently smooth and sweet character to coat the mouth. The light bitterness hangs out for a bit but goes away quickly. One of the main detracting feelings can be attributed to alcohol burn.

O: Overall I thought it was an alright beer. I probably wouldn't get it again if looking for an oatmeal stout or a stout of any kind. After being aged it would probably be a lot nicer, but there are many beers out there that taste much better straight from the beer store, out of my fridge, and into a glass.

Photo of JEdmund
2.94/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pure black color, but sadly no head formation. Aroma is somewhat mild, but I do get the normal RIS notes of dark chocolate, coffee, and even a light cherry/raspberry fruit. Big flavor with a really big blast of alcohol heat in the finish. Mouthfeel is disappointing; not only is it somewhat thin for the style, but I’m not getting any of the creamy/silkiness you normally get when oats are added to the mash. I was really looking forward to that component of the beer. Those complaints aside, the flavor was still good and I enjoyed the beer. It just didn’t live up to the hype and my expectations.

Photo of twelvsies
3.05/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Eh, this beer just never came together for me. Pours soft, thick looking, not much head to speak of despite me trying to build one up. Yes, there is lots of flavor in this beer. Chocolate cake, dark fruits, a touch of coffee maybe, but it never really gets deep. And despite my initial impression on the pour this beer doesn't really have a lot of body to it to hold everything together. At times it kind of tasted like flavored sugar water, unfortunately. Was hoping for more but this just seemed like a confused beer to me.

Photo of Vierenner
3.06/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Way more hoppy than expected -- ruins what could have been an exceptional beer in my opinion. I can taste some interesting flavors in the background but have a difficult time enjoying them with the hop pucker coming on so strongly. For reasons unclear to me, the Barrel Aged version seems less hoppy and more enjoyable.

Photo of Blanco
3.16/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

pours typical black stout color with frothy brown head. thick lacing. smells of faint roasted malt. slight chocolate notes. taste is of bitter dark chocolate, with very little sweetness. the alcohol is hot in the flavor as well. mouthfeel is nice and smooth. drinkability, well, I was disappointed in this one. It's highly rated (and maybe mine is too fresh) but the bitterness and bite from the alcohol make this a mediocre offering.

Photo of DoctorDog
3.16/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Presentation: 1 pint 6 oz/22oz bottle into a pint glass. Brewed in Akron, Ohio- a mere 130 miles from my house.

A- Essentially black and opaque. Pours with a bare minimum of medium-brown head, which fades gradually, leaving a thin ring and no apparent lacing.

S- Strong earthy start, then mellows into a blended coffee/chocolate/alcohol smell as the drink warms a bit.

T- A bit of chocolate/espresso mixed with a hoppy earthiness. Perhaps a touch of dark fruitiness as it warms. Alcohol presence is fairly pronounced and apparent- less well concealed than I had anticipated/hoped.

M- Fairly creamy, smooth. Some heat and booziness.

D- Decent as a sipper. The flavors never quite came together for me, and it's slightly overly-boozy alcohol taste on the finish diminish this one a bit in my book.

Future outlook: Not a favorite, but it's decent and local-ish, so I'll probably give it another chance sooner or later.

Photo of charlesw
3.17/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Well, shucks. It's kind of a sad event for me when I know ahead of time that I'm going to give a good beer a review that will be lower than the average score. Alas, the average score for this average beer has greatly suffered from grade inflation, I fear.

Pretty? Well. It's dark and opaque. But it doesn't have any head. Sadly, I had a KBS tonight against which I can compare it on a few levels. As for appearance, well, it falls short. It falls short in that it has zero head. Ah. But that's comparing an RIS with a DIS. Oh, excuse me for making the distinction! Well, still, this falls short. No head. Close to "average" for the style but not all that great.

Smells of coffee and dry chocolate. Smoke. Sand dunes after rain.

Tastes interesting. Lots of stuff going on. The only flavor that really sticks out is the chocolate milk. Boy, do I ever have a buddy who would like this stuff! There's a fair amount of smoke and a bit of coffee - but much less than the chocolate. A bit sweet and there's on interesting bitter tang that hits you around the cheeks - kind of a puckery thing. Certainly very interesting for all that is going on. Not a great flavor but something worth trying.

It's about right in the mouth and I suppose I'd drink another if given one but I won't seek it out.

Photo of tut2528
3.17/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

A: deep yet black on the pour, about ½ fingers worth of dark-tan head formation, moderate film remains on the outside of the glass. Head dies down rather quickly.

S: roasted malts and coffee notes are the first aroma notes I notice. Behind it lies mild notes of dark fruits, molasses, and just a enough alcohol to be noticeable. Nothing else really coming to mind

T: Chocolate, big grains, and mild dark fruits. Moderate coffee lingers there in the background. Finishes with a vanilla creaminess but this is immediately pulled from the palate due to the dry hop finish (60 IBUs).

M: big, very chewy.

O: Unimpressive to be honest. I thoroughly enjoyed the BA BORIS in the past, so I decided to give this one a try. I love hops, but the hops are completely off in this one creating an unbalanced aspect. I find myself only noticing chocolate, coffee and hops.

Photo of Talisker
3.2/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into an Anderson Valley tulip from a 22oz bomber purchased May 2007 at Corral Liquor (Granite City, IL - St. Louis metro area).

Deep, dark, rich black. Little to no head on a gentle pour, but some very dark tan edging visible. Subsequent aggressive pours bring a multi-fingered richly carbonated dark tan head that dissipates quickly.

Aroma is thick - bitter chocolate, with sweet syrup coming to the fore as the beer warms.

Taste is perfectly integrated with the smell - massive amounts of rich flavor, coffee-style bitterness fighting (and winning over) some malty sweetness - almost too much going on to process at one time. The taste gets better and less edgy as the beer warms.

Texture is Stone-like - thick syrup. Alcohol burn is minimal - detecible toward the middle of the aftertaste, but not dominant or unpleasant. The sweetness takes forever to dissipate, the bitterness even longer - like many a Stone beer, the overwhelming bitterness overstays its welcome.

Truly a massive beer. Everything's here but the kitchen sink. Ultimately it's not to my taste - I like to preserve my palate for more than just a few sips. But Stone fans and others who want more of everything will enjoy this over-the-top stout.

Photo of karengarys
3.22/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This pours like black ink with a head. Cool!

Smell contains bourbon and molasses, malts.

Taste is... Well, good and bad, but unfortunately I cannot get over the bad. There is nice rich sweet malts. yummy. But the alcohol flavor is just way too prominent - and it reminds me of generic vodka. Just too much edge. Ickey. So, the taste just fails me.

Mouthfeel isn't bad. Cold it is bubbly enough. As it warms it flattens quickly.

Finish is a bit harsh bitter, and it leaves a bit of an aftertaste.

I just am not screaming "give me another".

There are too many rich creamy RISs out there that do not have the alcohol bite to put this on the top of my list. I would not recommend this particular one.

Photo of mrfrancis
3.23/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours an inky, opaque black with a thin, fizzy copper mousse that dies away within seconds. As far as color goes, this looks spot on, but with regard to head retention, it leaves a lot to be desired.

S: Gentler than expected on the nose, with aromas of roasted grain, oatmeal, heavy cream, bitter chocolate, and coffee easily detectable. There is a mild alcohol scent as well, but it is neither distracting nor harsh.

T: Initially, this beer displays notes of oatmeal, roasted grain, strong coffee, dark fruits, burnt toast, heavy cream, and bitter chocolate. Around mid-palate, a grassy, herbal hoppiness takes over. The finish is strong and punchy with grassy, bitter hops, heavy cream, chocolate, and coffee swirled in cleansing alcohol. I was expecting the flavors to be better integrated because this doesn't taste much like a stout after a point.

M: This is the best aspect of this beer. In the mouth, B.O.R.I.S. is creamy, silky, and smooth with a luscious full body. Carbonation is gentle and there is only a hint of an alcohol burn. For such a heavy, filling beer, it goes down very smoothly.

O: B.O.R.I.S. the Crusher is not a bad stout, but it is not great either. As a matter of fact, I consider this beer to be extremely overrated. Like most American craft breweries these days, Hoppin' Frog seems to have forgotten that not all ales need to be heavily hopped. The high hop bitterness of this beer distracts from the great roasted malt and oatmeal flavors it initially displays, making it seem a bit muddled and off-kilter. If the hops had been reigned in a bit, this would be a fantastic imperial stout, but as is, it's merely okay.

Photo of tai4ji2x
3.23/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz bomber. no date found. poured into tulip. tasted in early april 2009

totally opaque! brown, 1-finger head fades to thin wisps, then mostly just a ring. lacing never sticks, always sliding back down after each sip.

very fruity aroma, with cherries and fresh figs. gentle caramel and molasses. touch of alcohol and phenols, almost boozy, yet not. some coffee and cocoa underneath. touch of grassy earthiness - hops? or roasted malt? whiffs of vanilla, especially in back.

taste: fruity character meets with light booziness, like dark rum. some caramel, some roasted malt, but a bit overtaken by the booze, with phenolic note to the vanilla. moderate bitterness also clashes with alcohol and phenols. coffee in the aftertaste.

lightly viscous, but has moments of watery thinness. acidity and astringency in the finish, which at least aren't overly affected by the phenols and alcohol. moderate carbonation doesn't contribute much.

wow... talk about overrated... or maybe it's just this batch. i remember this from a tasting a couple years back, and it definitely wasn't like this...

Photo of gdfan47
3.32/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

first off let me say im not a big stout guy or coffee guy

but I checked it out

it pours a jet black, like black black
some brown head

the smell is like coffee mixed with a little oats and some faint chocolate

it tastes just like it smells

its smooth to drink

its a good beer, just not my favorite style

i would have it again though

the high abv really works for me with this beer

Photo of Yagman3000
3.35/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from a 22 oz. bomber into an oversized pint glass.

Appears dark as night. Pure motor oil with a tiny bubbly ring around the outside cwouldnt even refer to it as a head.

Smells like chocolate and dark coffee with a bit of a medicinal quality too. A decent heaviness to it through the nose.

Tastes chocolatey and of coffee but I'm not getting too much oatmeal.

Mouthfeel isn't so pleasant. There's a residual aftertaste that leaves me less than thrilled.

Overall I was really let down. I had heard good things about this beer and I love the genre but this disappointed me. This is the second beer that I didn't enjoy by this brewer. Fearful ee just don't see eye to eye (or eye to liver).

Photo of pmccallum86
3.36/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to the mothman for sharing this one.

Pours a deep, dark brown, oily black with a mocha colored head.

Licroice, banana, roasted malts, oatmeal and sweetness. Very big and rich smelling beer.

Oatmeal and big roasted malts, very interesting for an RIS. Weird off taste in the finish though, an oxidized taste. Average for the style, I was expecting more out of this sought after beer.

Low carbonation, very thick and syrupy. This beer could be described as a "desert beer."

Good, but very thick and heavy with nothing to distinguish itself as a top representative of the category.

Photo of BattleRoadBrewer
3.38/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served at cellar temp from a brown bomber into a standard pint glass.

Pours like oil, very heavy body and no head. Very aggressive final pour generates some coarse bubbles.

Aroma is sweet, with coffee and malt predominating, followed with some fruitiness and chocolate.

Flavor is heavy with oatmeal and coffee, a nice burnt whiff. No defects for such a big beer.

Mouthfeel is slick and mighty heavy. Lots of aftertaste filling the mouth, low bitterness for the style.

Drinkability is decent but there are so many better recipes out there. Oatmeal stouts don't lend well to being amped up. This one has no technical brewing defects, just doesn't taste that good. The nice burnt malt note and strong coffee are the redeeming features.

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B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher Oatmeal-Imperial Stout from Hoppin' Frog Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 2,519 ratings.