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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

2,492 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,492
Reviews: 1,000
rAvg: 4.23
pDev: 9.46%
Wants: 256
Gots: 498 | FT: 44
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: 2,492 | Reviews: 1,000
Photo of dancinwillie
4.03/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Black coffee colored beer, capped by a creamy, dark chocolate head. Very active, and the head drops almost instantly.

My nose is detecting a rich cocoa sweetness, while a nice subtle hop aroma keeps it from being overpowering.

Flavor is a little muted, on my first few sips. Barely a dark raison flavor, although a stronger cocoa presence introduces itself pretty quickly. Very sweet, like cream and sugar in coffee. But the hops, and the roasted barley flavors really cut down on the sweetness. The hops are very light, a little citrus, a bit more earthy. Maybe a bit grassy.

Super smooth and creamy, but a little lacking in actual body. Even with the oatmeal, I think this could be a bit bigger.

Overall, a ridiculously tasty adult beverage. Seemed subdued at first, but I have a tendency to rush it. Once I gave it a little room to breathe, it warmed up to me in a hurry. It's like they took all the best parts of all the stout styles, and combined them into one ultimate bizarro stout. The only thing missing are some oysters! Big thank you to BA user tburkhart for helping me get ahold of this tasty Eurasian amphibian. Cheers!

Photo of gciccarelli
4.15/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle poured into snifter.

A - Pours pitch black with a dark brown head that quickly dissipates.

S - Coffee, roasted malt, chocolate, oatmeal, burnt grain. Not a very strong aroma, but it is complex.

T - Sweet chocolate, roasted malt, coffee. Alcohol really isn't noticeable even at 9.4% ABV. Finishes smooth and slightly bitter.

M - A bit lighter than some other imperial stouts - but creamy. Very pleasant.

D - Alcohol is masked well and lighter mouthfeel makes this one go down easier than the normal imperial stout.

An excellent stout worth checking out!

Photo of Birdiebeagle
4.85/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle Pours a deep black with a decent tan head. The head lasts well and laces nicely. Has a great aroma of chocolate, coffee, alcohol, and malts. Has a light carbonation. The flavor is very good. The alcohol is very hidden. Blending is excellent. Has a hearty flavor of chocolate and malts. This is a thick beer that sicke to the ribs. Has a full body. The finish is very good and the aftertaste lingers for full apriciation of this beer. Very well done.

Photo of MrHurmateeowish
4.52/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber from the Liquor Shoppe in Tyngsborro, Mass. Pours an opaque black body with a thin film of tan head. Dark chocolate, coffee, dates, a touch of vanilla. Dark chocolate, coffee, burnt malt, caramel, some oatmeal. Full-bodied with moderate carbonation. While it's definitely a sipper, one sip definitely invites another and this beer was gone way too soon. Phenomenal. One of the best big stouts I've ever had. Awesome.

Photo of cdViking
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Received in trade, consumed on 5/10/09.

Pours nearly opaque black into pint glass, with minimal tan head that dissipates fairly quickly. Smell is tasty, with burnt grain, oatmeal and slight coffee hints. Taste is very good, with the oatmeal coming through strongly and syrupy. I also taste chocolate and a little booze. Feels very nice in the mouth, thick and well carbonated. A little heavy to be really drinkable, a trait that is signature in RISs, but tremendously so for the style. Would purchase much of if it were consistently available.

Photo of Tolann
4.32/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Awesome bottle obtained in a trade with jleblanc!

A - Looks way yummy! head a roasty cocoa colored head that faded to nothing, not even a ring. Super dark denying any light.

S - sweet chocolate. I anticipated some roasted coffee characteristics, tho I'm not picking that up. The sweetness is pretty damn sweet and you really don't need anything else. There's something going on in the background playing the supporting role. Caramel? Licorice?

T - Chocolatey sweetness. Licorice. I knew it. There's some hops that bite back at the end of the sip.

M - Some dry chocolate bitter at the back of your mouth. the alcohol isn't exactly hiding, but it isn't too offensive. almost a milk stout mouthfeel...no not quite. Something gooey about the sip. Lighter mouthfeel and little carbonation.

D - Certainly not a beer I'd ever turn down! Just wish it was easier to obtain.Even with the higher abv. its pretty easy to sip away. I almost feel guilty cuz this beer is too much fun.

Photo of easement
4.85/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance: pours with little head that fades immediately.

Smell: sweet chocolate and caramel

Taste: chocolate, caramel, sweet cream, burnt malt, molasses, toffee

Mouthfeel: thick, smooth, and almost chewy.

Drinkability: This is a great beer. It goes down smoothly and hides the alcohol very well. I definitely need to track down more. I think that this exemplifies the best of the style.

Serving type: bottle

Photo of younger35
4.23/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Picked up a bottle of this from Dobbys in Palatine to compare to the barrel aged version I'll probably try tomorrow. I've actually had this beer 10+ times as it's my favorite 'readily available' ever. Also very surprised this is my first reviewed Hoppin' Frog brew. Drank from my Darkness snifter.

Appearance- Pours a super dark black with a nice half finger dark tan head that looks soft and creamy. A decent cap and collar is left despite the alcohol but no lacing.
Smell- This has always been the weak part of B.O.R.I.S in-my-opinion. The hops are very prominent and very citrusy and very fresh. Not exactly what you expect from a Imperial Stout of any kind. A roasty background is noticeable as is some black licorice and a bit of ashy molasses (no sweetness though). They hold nothing to the hops though.
Taste- The smell is deceiving especially once you take a sip. It's not the hops aren't present, they just aren't anything like they smell. The beer starts very roasted with a almost bitter char that is pretty damned licoricy. Plenty of molasses and a lightly sweet bit of caramel show early as well as a bit of alcohol. I'm fairly sure this is a pretty fresh version because this is way hotter than other bottles I've had. A bit of dry charred cocoa and vanilla play off each other very well. The hops really do come into play though in the finish ass they add a bit of vibrant bitterness that is somewhere between citrus and grass.
Mouthfeel- Pretty thin but sort of acceptable in my book. The oatmeal isn't really dominant here in the feel as I think it would have more impact if the body was a bit more robust. I think it's hard to feel that slick creaminess in a thin beer.
Drinkability- Okay, I know that my review probably didn't sound like a ringing endorsement but I've had this beer so many times that I know it's good. I think I'm just picking out the faults. It's so tasty and so solid I appreciate every drop of this I've ever tasted. Great beer by a damn fine brewery. A must try.

Photo of tr4nc3d
3.75/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a dark color with a mocha colored one finger head. Very small amounts of lacing, barely there.

Smell is of brown sugar, sweet maple syrup, cocoa, roasted malts, espresso.

Taste has a sweet sugary maple syrup feel, soy, caramelized brown sugar, hints of roasted malts, slight hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel is full and thick with good carbonation(more then other RIS).

This is tasty but not that great. I still prefer other RIS which have more flavor.

Photo of tigg924
4.45/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: small head that fades quickly--dark brown

Smell: chocolate malt, sugar, alcohol, and nuts

Taste: expresso, sweet cream, burnt malt, oats, molasses, cookie dough

Mouthfeel: thick, oliy, smooth, sweet, and chewy

Drinkability: This is one of my favorites in the style. The taste is awesome. It is like eating a big delicious cookie. I will search for this again and would gladly have several if not for the high abv

Photo of JohnQVegas
4.05/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle into snifter, reviews from notes Oct. 26, '08

Pours opaque black, no head, just a thin ring of brown bubbles at the edge of the glass.

Nose is roasty and sweet, notes of espresso and cocoa, a bit of soy, hint of alcohol.

Taste is sweet and roasty, big notes of cocoa and toffee, caramelized brown sugar, with a balancing smooth, roasty note, hinting at espresso with a bit of acidity around the edges. Some soy in there also. Finishes with a roasty lingering light bitterness, hint of hops in there, acidity hanging around also.

Mouthfeel has the classic oatmeal stout silkyness, light but full bodied.

Photo of alcstradamus
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured black with not much head and no lacing. Smell and taste were dark fruits and a good roastiness to balance the sweetness, and a hop finish. Velvety smooth on the mouth with perfect carbonation levels. A bomber of this would be perfect for a night of sipping. Great beer.

Photo of maximum12
4.32/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up this bad-boy in a trade some time ago & it's been lurking patiently in the fridge ever since, waiting for me. I have an almost pathological aversion to oatmeal, so I've had a slow start on picking up the oatmeal stouts. But I'm hear now, BORIS. Take me.

Dark black with little evident carbs. Smells fantastic, dark, malty, hoppy. Very nice. Makes me want to take a sip.

So go ahead. Ahhhh, yummy. The hops are a surprise, since most RIS I've had that claim to be hoppy aren't; this is the third I've had that I can really dig (along with Darkness & Smutty IS). Love it! Then there's the chocolate, which really lingers, & the nice dark malts that have just a tiny tinkle of coffee, almost. Lalalala good.

BORIS is dark, slick, oily, & bold. And easy drinking. Split the bomber with the wife but could have easily had this myself.

Excellent brew. I'll find this one again!

Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.15/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Onyx, ebony, obsidian, pitch, midnight... you get the picture. Ain't no accents in this bad boy, I don't care how bright your light source is. The mochachino colored cap started out creamy and is becoming even more so as it melts. Spider web-like lace graces the glass in fine fashion. What's not to love?

If you like your big stouts to smell like an explosion of black malt and hops, look no further than B.O.R.I.S. Aromas include bittersweet chocolate, espresso, licorice and a not-quite-citric hoppiness. German Northern Brewer were used for bittering and Liberty were used for flavor.

I have no doubt that this is going to be great beer because I've already tasted it... back in the fall of '06 when I visited Hoppin' Frog. Fred Karm was kind enough to show me around and to get us each a plastic cupful of B.O.R.I.S. straight from the tank. It was amazing at 34 degrees, so it should be even more incredible at 60. Incidently, my knowledge of the ingredients is from notes that I took that day after talking with Fred.

I'm a little let down (but only a little). This is unquestionably a good RIS, but it can't hold a candle to the best of style, which are some of the finest beers in all the world. More malt would help since it feels a bit thin relative to where it ought to be. That said, it's bursting with loads of 'black' flavor... from the black patent malt, no doubt.

The flavor profile includes dark chocolate fudge brownies, espresso, blackstrap molasses, licorice and a few shavings of citrus peel. Pretty similar to the nose, which isn't surprising. There's minimal char and no smoke. I can't believe I'm saying this, but fewer hops might have resulted in better beer. This should be a malt bomb all the way.

The mouthfeel just does manage to hang in there and earn the above score. It's plenty smooth, but needs to be creamier and chewier. The gentle carbonation is right about where it should be.

B.O.R.I.S. is a killer name for a Russian Imperial stout. Too bad the beer itself can't stand toe-to-toe with the greats. It's still worth a purchase and I will still buy a bomber or two whenever I make it back to the Buckeye State.

Photo of far333
3.98/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in a crystal snifter. Dark brown, nearly black with an inch high head of medium-brown foam of big soapy bubbles that pop as it slowly recedes. Big curvey legs of lace weave up the sides of the glass.

Aroma of cocoa and coffee, some molasses and leather.

Starts off semi-sweet and chocolatey, moves quickly to roasted malt, burnt espresso and molasses, some smoke and charred bark. A flourish of hoppy bitterness emerges in the finish. Alcohol is well hidden.

Mouthfeel is a bit slick up front, becomes more tingly as it finishes. Leaves a slightly dry and tannic pucker in the finish.

Tasty beer, very drinkable. Seek this one out.

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 patmcd
4.2/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz Bomber, which I was surprised to find at a hole-in-the-wall liquor store.

Poured a pitch black with a think, dark brown head which laced extremely well.

The nose is dominated by chocolate, coffee and some roasted oatmeal.

I get malty and sweet chocolate right away laced with a mild but pleasant alcohol. The oats provide a pleasant base that really compliments the malts and the beer is very well done with a perfect balance of hops and sweet undertones.

Felt thick and earthy in the mouth, but it was pleasant to drink and my pint glass emptied rather quick.

Photo of ironarrow42
4.55/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

On draught at Chappy's Tap Room and Grille, Moraine, OH

Served in a snifter. Opaque black with a thin caramel-beige head and collar. Rich malt aroma with notes of molasses, coffee, alcohol, and sweet cocoa. Full bodied with a rich, heavy texture, smooth and creamy. Very low carbonation. Big flavours - bitter, roasty, bittersweet chocolate, roast coffee, low esters. Some baked raisin with molasses (Boston brown bread) but not sweet, and a nutty note (pecan?). Awesome! Alcohol is noticeable but not hot. Bits of foam remain on the glass at the finish. Substantial and satisfying beer.

Photo of OneDropSoup
4.32/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber, comes out a thick black body with a medium brown "tapioca" head, about a finger. Leaves some serious lacing, head drops to less than half an inch.

Smell is riiiich, like an S'more made with dark chocolate & soaked in alcohol. Definitely smell the booze up front. The taste is right along with it, and adds some dark roasted coffee. The taste of espresso lingers in the aftertaste, like I just actually chewed on the beans instead of drinking the beverage. Those rich, creamy dark chocolate flavors are really dominant, almost like a liqueur. Very roasty aspects, on the verge of burnt.

The mouthfeel's thick, like most RIS. I have yet to experience the oily slickness that so many attribute to oatmeal stouts -- might be there, but I just don't recognize it. Bottom line: this is deliciious & I want more.

Photo of orbitalr0x
4.32/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber pours a dark charcoal black with a bit of dark tan bubbles on top. Fairly low carbonation overall off the pour. Aromas kick in with a blast of deep, rich cocoa. Coffee, caramel and oats are in there as well but the rich cocoa runs the show.

First sip brings big malts upfront with a blast of cocoa that moves into tones of coffee, caramel and molasses as well. A bit sweet as it flows down with a touch of alcohol as well as dark fruits running through. Big and chewy malts run wild all over the place while the oats bring a slick smoothness to the entire experience. Just a damn good oatmeal imperial stout.

Mouthfeel is smooth and rather heavy. Quite a chewy drinking experience that is rather filling. A bit stout through and through that is smoothed out by the oats. A damn tasty beer here I'm glad I was able to try.

Photo of buschbeer
4.37/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've been wanting to try this for awhile now. I was so excited to get it that I had to immediately review it. I poured into a Bud Light Cleveland Caveliers glass to a brown head with very little carbonation. The chocolate and bready, roasted malts come to the forefront. It tastes great. I don't know if it's $9 a bomber great, but great nevertheless. I am a Siberian Night fan but I think this is a nudge better. Being a simple man of humble means I will have to stick with Siberian Night. But someday I will try some Founders Breakfast Stout and curse my meanial job. Oh well, I'm enjoying this for now.

Photo of scooter231
3.85/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Extremely dark brown color- not quite motor oil black. No light coming through this fellow, though- none at all. Pour is very lightly carbonated, and leaves a thin ring of sudsyness around the glass. Ominous looking sucker.

Smells strongly of sweet cocoa flavored coffee; the oatmeal scent is there, but it's not overwhelming at all, which is a good thing for me because I despise the stuff. Lots of roasty malty scents coming through as well. I can tell right now- I am going to dig this brew.

First sip- the alcohol is ever present- I was hoping it would be a little more sneakily hidden. After that initial shock, the sweetness of the beer comes through quite strongly. There's a bit of a bitterness that balances it out, but it's still sweeter than I would prefer. Too much dark fruit flavor, perhaps.

Mouthfeel is a bit thin, not too try. A hint of carbonation. Overall it's a nice RIS, but too sweet for my palate. I prefer more roasted, bitter flavors. But that's just me. This fellow is certainly worth a try. If only for the awesome frog on the bottle.

Photo of NCBeernut
3.47/5  rDev -18%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Vigorous pour of this black oily elixir yields about a centimeter of head that just falls into nothing but a little ring...Smell is chocolaty and boozy. Chocolaty taste as well, like a boozy gouache or a heavy dark chocolate liquor. Heavy bitter and roasted flavors as well. Slight astringency. Silky, chewy, thick mouthfeel. It really just seems like the thought behind this was something like "lets see how EXTREME we can make this!!!" but without much effort to really produce something drinkable. I have been hanging onto this bomber for about a month for a good night to drink it and...disappointed. At the price they are charging, not worth it at all. It will surely get you a hell of a buzz though, since the only option is to buy it in a bomber. Thanks, but at this price point, I will happily stick to my KBS.

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 MuddyFeet
4.15/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a near midnight black. Near oily in appearance. No head and essentially flat. Nose is slightly sulphuric with a nice wholesome breadiness.

Flavor is quite good. I thought I was going to be disappointed by this beer but was not. Coffee and oats. Some chocolate. Light spruce-ness to balance out the sweet. Body is a bit of a downer. I thought it'd be thicker after seeing it pour. A tad thinner than I thought it was going to be and what I was hoping for. Still a good beer altogether.

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B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher Oatmeal-Imperial Stout from Hoppin' Frog Brewery
94 out of 100 based on 2,492 ratings.