1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,334 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,334
Reviews: 980
rAvg: 4.24
pDev: 9.43%
Wants: 244
Gots: 467 | FT: 38
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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: klewis on 11-10-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher Oatmeal-Imperial Stout Alström Bros
Ratings: 2,334 | Reviews: 980 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of abecall98
4.75/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Oh boy, pouring a bottle of this BA badboy.

A - pours a nice thick black. Minimal head, not much lacing, but it's Bal-Aged, so it gets a 4.

S - due to the minimal head, the aroma suffers, but you can still get some great bourbon, malt, coffee and vanilla notes, and it's so damn pleasing.

T - oh boy. It taste like hella things. Starts off se coffee and chocolate roast, perfectly melding. Next the flavors of a nice bourbon and wood kick in. Vanilla hits at the end, followed by some slight dark fruit goodness.

M - very creamy. This beer is perfectly carbonated to style. It coats the mouth with it's vanilla flavor. The aftertaste is sweet and pleasing, and it lasts.

D - wow, perfectly hidden abv. This beer is worth the price tag because it makes you want more of it's flavor after every sip. You can't out this down.

O - amazing. This beer doesn't get enough talk, and it deserves all of it's praises.

abecall98, Jul 08, 2010
Photo of TheHoppiest
4.28/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a pint glass. Pours midnight dark; light cannot penetrate this beast. Pours with a 1/4" tan head that reduces to a thin blanket cover keeping it warm.

Has a warm roasted aroma, coffee, toffee, even a little vanilla extract. Smells like dessert, with a hint of alcohol warmth to its smell.

Tastes of dark currants, apples, dark chocolate, and roasted coffee beans, with alcohol warming its descent. Sweet, yet toasted in flavor. A nice nippy hop flavor finishes it, grabbing the tongue with slight astringency.

This is a thick-tasting beer, rich and full in the mouth. I have other Hopping Frog beers already in the cellar (they're easy pickings around here, given that it is an Akron brewery), otherwise I'd get another the next time I was out.

TheHoppiest, Jul 06, 2010
Photo of Pencible
4.58/5  rDev +8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: This poured like inky syrup, and was pitch black with some dark tan head.
S: It smelled like rich mocha and toasted oats, with some brown sugar and a hint of dark fruit.
T: It tasted like dark chocolate and bitter coffee and toasted oats, with a bit of licorice and dark fruit and soy. It had an ultra rich but smooth aftertaste.
M: It was super thick with a bit of carbonation. I was practically chewing this to swallow.
D: This was a fantastically crafted beer with lots of flavors all blended and balanced perfectly. It hid the alcohol very well, so it was dangerously easy to drink. But the thickness and complexity made it better for sipping. This Hoppin' Frog met the hype; definitely recommended.

Pencible, Jun 28, 2010
Photo of GeezLynn
4/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle into snifter. Purchased Autumn 2009.

A: Syrupy dark black that clings to the edges of the glass. Scant, short-lived tan head.

S: Lots of oats at first. In addition, ample vanilla, caramel and chocolate malts suggest this should be on the sweeter side. There's also a slight roasted component, but leans much more toward sweeter end of spectrum. Also a faint booziness.

T: Sweet and malty with dark chocolate flavors front and center. There's also plenty of dark fruit, especially raisin, along with roasted malts and anise. Not a whole lot in the way of bitterness or roast malt to balance out all that sweetness. Finishes with a little alcohol heat.

M: Syrupy with the nice smoothness you get from the oats. Very lightly carbonated.

A good RIS, but not really my preferred approach to the style.

GeezLynn, Jun 27, 2010
Photo of perrymarcus
4.33/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

served in a st bernardus oversized wineglass.

A - true to its bretheren in the style, pours a very dark brown/almost pure black with a finger of tan head... decent retention and lacing.

S - coffee, chocolate, roasted malt.

T - very tasty. coffee at first, followed by chocolate and oatmeal, the latter being more subdued. the alcohol is definitely there but it's not overpowering by a long shot.

M - full-bodied, thick and rich.

D - surprisingly drinkable for an imperial stout... i could have another.

perrymarcus, Jun 26, 2010
Photo of avalon07
4.58/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a jet black color and a thick consistency. There was a quarter inch of foamy/creamy, fairly long-lasting, brown-colored head. Pretty good lacing.

S: A nice aroma of chocolate, malt, coffee, oatmeal, and a bit of hops.

T: Tasted of coffee, oatmeal, chocolate malt, and a nice bitter hoppiness in the finish. Alcohol is quite as omnipresent as it is with some other Russian Imperial Stouts.

M: A very well carbonated beer with a somewhat slick finish. Full-bodied, but doesn't weigh you down.

D: One of the best, most drinkable beers of the style.

avalon07, Jun 25, 2010
Photo of TMoney2591
3.9/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

I've been wating to try this bad boy for some time. It begins. The pour results in a thick, viscous tar pit filling my snifter, topped by a half-finger of dark brown foam, which sinks into the dinosaurs' abyss fairly quickly. The nose comprises dark coffee (complete with a light hint of olfactory bitterness), roasted and toasted malts, and charred wheat. Something seems off here, but I can't put my finger on it. Are the malts too blackened? I dunno, but it's something like that. The taste holds notes of dark chocolate syrup, coffee, blackened oats, and a slightly bitter aftertaste. A step above the nose, fer sure. The body is pretty thick 'n' chewy, but not too, with a moderate carbonation (higher than I expected, but, again, not too much so) and a decent oral coating. Overall, I see this as a solid stout, but not among the better ones. Still definitely worth a shot, though.

TMoney2591, Jun 21, 2010
Photo of VaTechHopHead
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Yet another "Beer of the Week" from BA Gborobeer!

A - Black. Hardly any head or lacing and not transparent in the slightest sense.

S - Very impressive...at first whiff I thought it was the barrel-aged version (it's not, I checked). Lots of roasted malt aroma with pseudo-bourbon smells as well. Don't get much of the oatmeal aroma in it though.

T - Again, without me knowing I would have thought this one was barrel aged, quite impressive. Lots of roasted malt flavor followed by a quit coffee burst in the beginning. Oatmeal much more present in the taste at the end of the swig, accompanied by the slight bittering of hops and chocolate malt.

M/D - Heavy body, very slight dry finish...more of a bitter aftertaste due to the roasted malts. High alcohol is slightly present in the heat but not enough to destroy the beer at all. Due to the heavy nature and great flavor profile it's definitely a sipper.

Very impressive beer, must try the barrel-aged version ASAP!

VaTechHopHead, Jun 20, 2010
Photo of brianjay
4.28/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dark dark dark. This beer is pure black, with almost no head. A very thin, cinnamon-colored eclipse floats on top, but quickly subsides leaving a slight dusting of foam on the glass.
Notes are not as intense as I would have thought from the sight of it.
There seems to be a light, coco aroma. Let's dive right into drinking this one...

Taste has a light beginning, but ends with a strong, dry finish which sets up shop on your entire tongue. Chocolate comes through after some time, and it is sweet. Like something you would order from a Starbucks.
Thick and viscous body, almost like a syrup. but goes down very smooth. An interesting taste overall (sweet, sour, dry), and it is hard to find the 9.4% alcohol. A word of warning: take your time with this one. It will sneak up on you. Makes a great dessert beer.

brianjay, Jun 19, 2010
Photo of connecticutpoet
4.53/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my pint glass, this beer was an intensely dark brown, nearly black slice of heaven. I got almost no head, and what little appeared went away almost immediately.

Aroma can pretty much be summed up as STRONG. Strong dark malts, and strong dark fruits (mostly figs and prunes). After I became accustomed to it, I detected some faint hops. Seriously, this aroma was so thick I could almost chew it.

Taste was strong dark malt, roasted barley, and coffee at first. This was followed by strong dark fruits, and a slight sweetness. Nice. Unlike many others, I didn't get any chocolate or cocoa flavors.

Mouthfeel was awesome. Thick and rich, full-bodied, but not heavy, if you can believe it.

Drinkability is very high. I didn't have any problems finishing this bottle. That being said, I don't think I could have more than two pints should I be lucky enough to find it on tap somewhere. One bottle did nicely.

connecticutpoet, Jun 18, 2010
Photo of hopstradamus
4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A. Pours a thick, syrup-like, jet black like an Imperial Stout should. Seriously, it lets no light through. It has a thick brown head that lasts.

S. Dark and Chocolaty, with strong roasted malt. Sweet with hints of coffee and brown sugar.

T. Dark, very roasted, almost burnt flavor. This beer is sweet and strong. The flavor lives up to the appearance and smell like few others do.

M. Strong and chewy with great body and decent carbonation. This beer is not just a pleasure, but also a meal in itself.

D. A couple of pints would be my limit. While the 9.4% alcohol is not overbearing, there is a lot here to enjoy. This would be a great beer to sip on a cold winter night.

This beer is an excellent example of the style and a true pleasure to enjoy. Great beer!

hopstradamus, Jun 16, 2010
Photo of DmanGTR
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review from notes in December 09

This beer is quite good. Yes, that just about sums it up. Poured extremely dark, pretty much pitch black with a tannish head. Retained for a while, no lace. This is an incredibly chocolatey beer with bits of cocoa powder, earthy bitterness, more chocolate, and roastiness. Maybe a touch of leather as well. Silky smooth and velvety. I'd drink this all day.

DmanGTR, Jun 10, 2010
Photo of LuckyRVA
4.88/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

From the first sip you know this is a great beer. Was slightly surprised at the lack of carbonation. It had practically no head.

Very smooth with a distinct dark chocolate flavor. As someone else mentioned, almost no taste of oatmeal.

Very drinkable considering the alcohol content. You do notice a slight alcohol finish after it warms a bit.

Overall great beer.

LuckyRVA, Jun 06, 2010
Photo of AJacob81
4.53/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A readily available RIS (at least in Chicago)? But how can it ever compare to the DL's and BCBCS's of the world?

A - Black. Smoky tan head that dissipates quickly, with no lacing, but a thin molasses-like coating is left. Typical for the style.

S - Wow. Smoky dark fruits, bitter coffee, and a hinit of semi-sweet chocolate. Very intense nose, and has my interest in this at a fever pitch.

T - Soft, dark fruits and rich roasted coffee dominate, in near-perfect harmony. A subtly chocolate-sweet malt character emerges next, and a syrupy, but still fairly dry finish. Just the faintest taste of hops and a tiny bit of oatmeal provides a nice twist.

M - Medium-to-full body, very little carbonation. Again, textbook for the style.

D - Great. So easy to drink, and an absolute pleasure to do so.

I stand by my high, hype-affirming ratings for DL and BCBCS, but this is easily in that league, and I can't wait to see how the barrel-aged version stacks up.

AJacob81, Jun 06, 2010
Photo of ruckus232
4.22/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 Ounce brown bottle poured into a pint glass

Appearance: When poured out of the bottle it looked almost like a blacker then black syrup. The head retention was a little bit disappointing but otherwise looks good.

Smell: A fruity sweet smell but not like you might expect. It actually has more of a raisin (dried fruit smell). I realize that doesn't sound appealing but it is actually a good smell. There is a little roasted scent but nothing extremely noticeable.

Taste: There is an initial taste of alcohol but not too much. Then a nice roasted taste appears followed by a little sweetness to balance the roasted taste. Leaves a pleasant dry bitterness as an aftertaste.

Note: Even though it looked like syrup with little head, the carbonation was actually pretty good. This was not as toasted as I expected (flavor wise) but it was a really good beer.

ruckus232, Jun 06, 2010
Photo of rwf08
3.43/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a Duvel glass.

A: Jet black. Opaque, no light gets through this bad boy. Descent tan head that dissipates down into a thin ring around the glass. No real lacing to be found. I'd assume with an oatmeal stout, imperial or not, that I would get more head and lacing.

S: Pretty much what I find to be a standard RIS smell. Dark chocolate, some burnt sugar, dark fruit, but a pleasant oat smell once it warms up. Nothing to complain about here. Almost like an oatmeal cookie, a chocolate raisin oatmeal cookie.

T: Reminds me of kahlua. Dark chocolate, coffee, and some booze. I'd love to say I taste some oat in there but I'm getting too much booze. Wasn't there when it was cold, but now that it has warmed up I'm getting more booze.

M: Medium body, fairly viscous. Coats the tongue well.

D: This drinks very well for an Imperial Stout. Goes down smooth and has lots of good flavors.

Not my favorite but there is nothing bad about this beer really. I bought this while I was out of state and probably would save my money or buy something else if given the chance again. Not bad but doesn't stand out to me. Good beer but not great. Rather have a Stone IRS any day.

rwf08, May 31, 2010
Photo of Murchmac
3.78/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Adamb84 for this tasty brew in a trade.

half finger tan head, black. Legs running around the snifter like Carl Lewis round that track.

Oatmeal, coffee, chocolate smells.

Thin but tasty for a RIS, not boozy.

Been wanting to have this beer for a while, besides it being thin for the style, tasty brew that i'd have again.

Murchmac, May 30, 2010
Photo of Kaiser81
4.08/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Jerz/Vacax opened this with me

A - Finger width of mocha head. It's about as black as you can get, and there is nice lacing on my glass.

S - Roast, coffee, a bit of espresso, and just a touch of oatmeal.

T - Lots of roast, a touch of oatmeal, touch of dark fruits too. Very nice.

M - Heavy body, slight lightness due to the oatmeal? Mild carbonation. Just about perfect for a stout.

D - Good stout...heard it's great with some age on it.

Kaiser81, May 25, 2010
Photo of mdfb79
4.18/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From 5/22/10 notes. Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

a - Pours a dark brown with 2 inches of brown head and light carbonation,

s - Smells of chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, and vanilla. Very nice balance.

t - Tastes of roasted malts, coffee, bitter hops, and hints of alcohol.

m - Medium to full body and low carbonation. Very smooth and creamy.

d - A very nice RIS. I thought the smell was great and taste was quite enjoyable as well. Would definitely have again.

mdfb79, May 24, 2010
Photo of levifunk
4.22/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bomber split between klikger and I.

a - black. chocolate brown head.

s - chocolate, caramel sweeteness, malts, some booze.

t - mostly chocolate malts, some roasted flavor. ends with heavy chocolate like fudge. molasses. coffee. some booze hottness.

m - medium body, good thickness and carbonation.

o - very smooth drinking beer. sweet and chocolaty, but not over powering as its balanced by a slight bitterness on the end.

levifunk, May 23, 2010
Photo of MetalHopHead6
4.47/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher is sweet, smooth, and delicious.

B.O.R.I.S. poured black with no head. There's nothing special about the appearance, but there's a lot of flavor and a lot going on. The smell and flavor have a roasted coffee beginning, followed by sweet dark fruit. The feel is slippery and smooth--almost refreshing--with a perfect bitter finish. The amount of alcohol also is perfect, not adding any heaviness, but providing a very nice warmth.

B.O.R.I.S. is as good as any of the great Stouts I've had. It's complex, well-balanced, flavorful, and versatile. Despite it's darkness and high-gravity, it would work as well on a hot day (in moderation) as it would after a winter dinner.

MetalHopHead6, May 23, 2010
Photo of klikger
4.43/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

10 oz. pour served in a snifter

A - Dark brown/black, with a small brown head and lacing which disappears quickly

S - Molasses, oatmeal, and malted milk balls

T - Bright coffee and milk chocolate are evident up front and stick around throughout. This is really a two-note beer for me; that being said, it's very well done and balanced nicely. Although it's certainly sweet, a slightly bitter finish brings it back to equilibrium.

M - Very creamy; substantial, but not overly thick. The carbonation is noteworthy & works well.

D - The alcohol was masked extremely well. Granted, I only had 10 oz., but I wanted more. At the same time, and although well balanced, I think that the sweetness would keep me from having more than a bomber (which is fine).

A very well-made RIS, BORIS is worthy seeking out. Despite not tasting the variety of flavors which many beers of the style impart, the combo of fresh coffee and sweet chocolate made this memorable for me. Now on to the barrel-aged version...

klikger, May 23, 2010
Photo of billshmeinke
4.3/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Stormking47 for an amazing extra. Poured into a pint glass.

Pours pitch black. There is a half finger coffee with a bit of cream colored head that quickly dies down to a ring of foam around the glass with some patches of foam on top.

Smells of oats and some dark fruits (raisins and plumb). There is also some hints of chocolate and coffee.

Taste explodes with milk chocolate, oatmeal, some raisins and plumbs, and coffee. Very nice RIS with awesome oat characteristics thrown in.

Full bodied. Low carbonation. Smooth and creamy. Perfect.

Very nice drinkability. The oats add some awesome smoothness. Very nice. Also, the oats make the chocolate flavors more on the milk chocolate than dark chocolate side which is really awesome.

billshmeinke, May 21, 2010
Photo of Cyberkedi
4.9/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a luscious opaque sable that is just one red tomcat whisker above black, with a fine-bubbled chocolaty head that sticks around for a bit - most inviting! Rich, oily aroma has a strong tone of quality roast coffee with a hint of brown sugar and a touch of sweet chocolate. Lip-smacking flavor fills the mouth with fine coffee, chocolate and molasses as well as a nice but not overly fierce alcohol bite. Sublime texture is smooth yet edgy and quite tingly, leaving a lively and slightly sweet finish. The Crusher indeed!

Cyberkedi, May 14, 2010
Photo of argock
4.38/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz brown bottle into a clear glass snifter. No freshness date. Purchased at Peabody's Wine and Beer Merchants (Boone, NC) for $10.99.

A: Super-thick black with grape-juice edges and short beige head with little to no lacing.

S: Incredibly complex aroma including black malt, molasses, licorice with a strong tobacco and coffee flavor and citrus and pine hops aromas.

T: Delicious combination of molasses, espresso, dark chocolate and dark fruits like raisin and prune and topped off with sharp citrus hops.

M: Chewy and thick, underestimated by many, with soft carbonation without being flat and a dark malty but citrus hops aftertaste.

D: A truly unique amped-up oatmeal stout. The price tag is somewhat off-putting as I can think of a lot of beers I can pay under $5.50 for 12oz and enjoy as much if not more. Still, it is an outstanding beer with a good flavor niche.

argock, May 11, 2010
B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher Oatmeal-Imperial Stout from Hoppin' Frog Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 2,334 ratings.