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Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. Oatmeal Imperial Stout - Hoppin' Frog Brewery

Not Rated.
Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. Oatmeal Imperial StoutBarrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. Oatmeal Imperial Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.

588 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 588
Hads: 2,265
Avg: 4.26
pDev: 16.9%
Wants: 275
Gots: 694 | FT: 81
Brewed by:
Hoppin' Frog Brewery visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ClockworkOrange on 02-02-2009

English-style Imperial Stout aged in Kentucky bourbon barrels.

Batch 1- 2009(April) GOLD cap
Batch 2- 2009(July) GOLD
Batch 3- 2009(Oct) GREEN
Batch 4- 2010 BLACK
Batch 5- 2011 RED
Batch 6- 2012 WHITE
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 588 | Hads: 2,265
Photo of MattyG85
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a Surly Darkness chalice.

Appearance: Pours a oily pitch black with a moderate amount of bubbles. About one finger of deep tan head that fades into a thin patchy layer. Leaves a lot of creamy lacing around the glass.

Smell: A big dark roasty aroma with lots of chocolate and barrel hints. Dark roasted malts with big hints of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, toast, burnt caramel, toffee, oatmeal, cream, tobacco, and nuts. The barrel comes through with hints of bourbon whiskey, sweet vanilla, and oak. Sweet hints of molasses and burnt sugars. Dark dried fruit undertones with hints of dark cherry, raisin, plum, and fig. Subtle earthy hop hints. A very rich and good stout aroma.

Taste: Like it smells, a big rich and roasty taste of dark malts and barrel notes. Barrel notes with a taste of bourbon whiskey, oak, sweet vanilla, and some wood. Big rich taste of dark roasted barley malts with notes of dark chocolate, cocoa nibs, coffee beans, toasted bread, burnt caramel, toffee, oatmeal, tobacco, cream, and nuts. Sweetness from some molasses and burnt sugar. Undertones of dark dried fruits with notes of cherry, raisin, plum, fig, and prune. Subtle presence of earthy hops add some bitterness in the background. Taste is rich and sweet with a nice bitter balance. Very good.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Very creamy and chewy. Slick and smooth. Alcohol is felt but its fairly tame in the mouth.

Overall: A very good barrel aged Imperial Stout. Great dark malt flavors with a good barrel presence. Good balance of sweetness and bitterness.

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Photo of cjoc83
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle purchased for $21 at Spinnerstown Hotel in Pennsburg, PA. Batch 6, 2012 (white cap).

A - Pours jet black with a motor oil-like viscosity into a Brooklyn Brewery tulip. An initial 2 finger dark brown head recedes quickly and leaves scant lace.

S - Lots of bittersweet bakers chocolate, roasted coffee, whiskey, and slight booze in the nose.

T - Roast, bittersweet espresso and dark cocao jump out first on the front of the tongue. Middle of the mouth the whiskey notes come out to play, and while big, it doesn't overshadow the other flavors. The chocolate also turns more to the sweet side, with some caramel malts and toffee. But the bitter roastiness comes back in the finish, along with some slight hop bitterness and astringent alcohol. A little hot.

M - Full bodied and slick, this heavy hitter coats the mouth with flavor. Lingering whiskey notes and slight bitterness. Semi-dry finish. Definitely a sipper.

O - This beer has been a long time want for me, so when I saw it on the bottle list it was a no-brainer, and it definitely didn't disappoint. Could use some age to mellow out the booze a little, but damn is this stuff tasty.

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Photo of AltBock
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22oz bomber bottle with a happy and probably drunk frog toasting a mug full of black liquid. Right below the mug is an OHIO sticker. Right below the frog is the name of the beer in a variety of different colors and fonts. To the far left of the frog is where they put all the Government info. To the far right of the frog is a description of the beer, some barrels, and another frog. Absent from the label and bottle is a vintage year. To tell what batch/year this bottle is from, look at the color of the cap. My cap was gold color. This was from either batch 1 or 2 from 2009.

When poured into a fellow Ohio Great Lakes Snifter, this Akron barrel aged beer poured a thick solid midnight crude oil black color. Jet black or oil black. Choose one you like the most. It doesn't matter. If it wasn't for the head of foam, this beer would have had a kick ass appearance. Up rose a tiny less than 1/4 of an inch dark mocha head of foam. In a blink of an eye, this head of foam was gone. It acted like it had somewhere to be. It only managed to leave behind a handful of mocha rings along the edge. Cool jet black color. That's why it was sad to see a weak head of foam on this pitch black brew.

This had one of those aromas that didn't want to play around with your sense of smell. Right off the bat was a strong whiff of whiskey and charred oak. Not so much whiskey that it made this beer smelled like a bottle of Jack. Following the strong aroma of whiskey was a nice amount of dark fruits. My nose picked up black cherry, plums, raisins, and a fig or two hiding in the back. Directly after the dark fruits was some tobacco, dark roasted malt, roasted coffee, and bitter dark chocolate. Rounding every thing off was a pleasant aroma of cherry vanilla. There was a lot going on in this aroma and my nose enjoyed every second of it.

Like the aroma, it was the whiskey and charred oak that kicked things off. It was warm and boozy. Not so boozy that the whiskey controlled the taste and kicked every other flavor out. Following the whiskey was the dark roasted malt, bitter dark chocolate, and roasted coffee beans. Those 3 loved being together. Also in that mix was a few dark fruits. There were more dark fruits in the aroma than there was in the taste. My tastebuds could only find the black cherry and raisins. At the finish line was a drop of vanilla. I wish there was more vanilla to counter all the whiskey and oak. A very good thick whiskey based taste.

The mouthfeel was like every other barrel aged Imperial Stout. In case you don't know what that means, it means that this beer was thick, roasted, and with a full flavored aftertaste. The aftertaste was warm and boozy with a whiskey based taste. I picked up on whiskey, charred oak, a little dark roasted malt and dark chocolate, and a subtle pinch of dark cherry and vanilla. This aftertaste will linger on for some time in the back of your throat.

I really didn't care for regular BORIS, but the barrel aged version makes me want to try it again. It was a very good not overly hot and boozy BA Imperial Stout. There was plenty of whiskey in this beer, but it didn't completely run this beer. It let other flavors in for an enjoyable drinking experience. Would I drink another bottle? I probably would.

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Photo of BA_Berto
4.8/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

What a beer! The last time that I remember being this happy with a wonderfully balanced BA Stout was when I drank BCBS and Parabola! That is so might fine company!

A- Black as night with quickly disappearing head. After a couple minutes, only traces of head remain on the surface.

S- Vanilla, Bourbon, and roasted malts. Absolutely delicious!

T- WOW! This taste like marshmallows that were soaked in bourbon, and that slowly heated up over a fire to make the perfect S'more. Fantastic!

M- Perfect! Coats the tongue, smooth as can be, and goes down so easily! Did I say WOW already?

O- Amazing! This is a top notch quality stout...Does it deserve a $21 price tag? No...but I am glad that I gave it a try!

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.85/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle opened on 7.15.13

2009 Vintage

A - Pours a black in the glass with a smaller dark tan-brown head that creeps to the edges slowly.

S - Sweet chocolate, oatmeal, booze, a touch oxidized.

T - Booze and oatmeal, then finishes with sweet chocolate - really sweet still. Still lots of booze as well.

D - Good carbonation with a heavy body, but it finishes thin.

O - Still lots of booze and overly sweet for me after four years.

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Photo of gr0g
4.15/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Opaque, pitch black with a small chocolate-colored, sticky head. Bourbon barrel notes are integrated nicely with the big stout character of the aroma. Bittersweet dark chocolate notes, vanilla and cherry infusion from the oak barrels. Some fusel presence, but it's not overpowering.

Soft, silky texture on the palate. Bittersweet chocolate with some molasses. The barrel-aging has left it's mark, a bit too much of a mark. Bourbon and oak impart bright vanilla and alcohol flavors, but they overshadow the dark, roasted qualities of the base stout. Only slightly do things improve as the beer warms up toward room temperature.

While I was surprised and happy to see Hoppin' Frog's stouts show up in NJ, Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. didn't quite live up to the hype for me. With more time to mature, this could mellow out and become a great imperial stout, but right now it's just a good one.

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Photo of jtladner
4.19/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2012 bottle (white cap). Black in color with dark brown head and good lacing. The nose is sweet with some vanilla and bitter chocolate. The taste is nicely complex, with a lot of chocolate and coffee, some roasted notes and the perfect amount of sweetness. Unfortunately I am not really noticing the whiskey at all, but still a very good stout.

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Photo of peensteen
4.19/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Deep brown, near black colour with a ring of mocha coloured head, no lace th speak of. Smell is of oak, vanilla and whisky followed by a big dose of chocolate cake and fudge, coffee and a medium roast. Taste is roasty with oak and bourbon/whisky flavours, vanilla and chocolate with a bit of coffee, lightly fudgey in the aftertaste. Light prickly carbonation, smooth and full bodied. Really solid stuff however with so many incredible BA stouts around this may just get lost in the shuffle, however I would certainly drink this again without question.

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Photo of Resuin
4.45/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bomber into a snifter. White cap.

Appearance: Pours a jet black and leaves a quarter finger or so of dark tan head.

Smell: Bourbon, dark chocolate, light coffee, some dark fruits: plum, figs. Well balanced stout aromas. Definitely smells tasty.

Taste: The coffee, which played a minor role in the aroma, takes a more prominent role in the taste. Plenty of bourbon, dark chocolate, plums, figs are also present. Plenty of oak notes are present in the latter half of the taste as well. Finishes nice and crisp with some bourbon and coffee. Alcohol is very well masked in the array of flavors.

Mouth-feel: Low to medium carbonation (more carbonation is present than I would have thought from the pour). Medium to heavy body with a nice creamy texture. Finishes smooth.

Overall: A high quality stout. Plenty of oak as well as bourbon notes are present from the time in the barrels. A very nice array of flavors, a nice, creamy texture and a pleasant aroma to boot. Definitely a quality beer drinking experience.

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Photo of PorterLambic
4.96/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Pardon my French but, holy shit is this good!

Arrives the color of a black hole at midnight during a new moon. No head at all.
Smell is amazing. Rich with malt, dark fruits, oak, whiskey, smoke. Probably the best balanced beer since Cigar City's oak aged Dirac.
Taste is great cold out of the tap but better once it has warmed 15-20 minutes. Notes of roasted malt, whiskey, dark fruits, smoke, oak. If you soaked a good fruitcake (yes, there are good ones!) in whiskey for a day it would be almost this good.
Full bodied, almost no carbonation. Smoothas a baby's butt. Rich as a rock star. One of the ten best beers I've ever had.

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Photo of yuichituba
1.91/5  rDev -55.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Batch#4 2010 bottle - drinking it in 2013

Looks black
(appearance means nothing to me unless it looks gross)

Aroma is somewhat boozy. Roast, light chocolate, but more booze from the bourbon than the malt. A bit thin smelling.

Flavor is a hot mess. You get hit with cheap whiskey booze followed by over-roasted, charcoaled coffee beans bitterness. Alcohol burn lingers down my throat as if I'm drinking actual whiskey. Nasty char bitterness lingers as well. No oxidation mouthfeel so this is how this beer turns out aged. Some vanilla coating the tongue but overall this beer is nasty.

I haven't had this fresh, but if there's any proof that barrel-aged beers should be drunk fresh, this beer would be it. The regular BORIS is already such a wonderful robust stout, having this aged bottle leaves the impression to me that the barrel-aging ruins an already beautiful thing.

Also, this costs $18-$20 for a bomber.

(Disclaimer: my final rating does not reflect a fresh bottle nor what I truly think of the regular BORIS)

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Photo of whoneeds8
4.57/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bought this on my trip to Chicago in April. Just now getting around to opening it.

Poured out of the bottle, with a black cap, a thick motor oil black into a Stone RIS glass. Thin head with little retention. Scent of the bourbon hits my nose, but that's all I get, I have a terrible nose. The taste has the bourbon burst up front with a bit of a hop presence. Then bring on the oats . . . the mouth just shuts down and goes dryer than a desert. A wonderful complexity and very well balanced. No two flavors are stronger than the other. Mouthfeel is perfectly bodied for the style and dry.

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Photo of hackmann
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: black as night body with a very thin bronzy-copper colored head that fizzes away in a heart beat and leaves a tan rim around the edge of the glass; no lacing; syrupy legs drip on the glass with each sip.

Aroma: dark roasted notes, lactic, toasted oak spice, a little vanilla coming from the oak barrel, dark roasted coffee, nice dose of chocolate, as the ale warms up a light bourbon note comes to life,

Flavors: just like the nose; rich dark roasted coffee, lactic acid feel, hint of sweet bourbon - oak spice with a touch of roasted vanilla and caramel, 85% dark chocolate like bitterness, a little bourbon like note and a dark chocolate bite on the aftertaste, not boozy

Mouthfeel: no carbonation, just a faint fizzy feel, thick, almost syrupy, kind of creamy, oak and alcohol spice on the tongue, the whisky note is mild, does not have an overwhelming alcohol feel, full body

To the Point: a really good barrel aged stout; this is a sipper; the last two or three barrel aged stouts that I have tried just did not appeal to me; this one is top shelf stuff; to me the bourbon note was just right – there was just a hint of it, the bourbon did not overpower the stout style. Time to get a bottle of bourbon off my bar and have a few sips as I finish this tasty stout.

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Photo of Stevedore
4.28/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Re-reviewing this one- I've opened up 2 bottles in the past, but never got around to doing a review/recall on it. 22oz bottle with the white bottle cap (probably produced in 2012-2013), poured into CCB snifters with friends yesterday, 5/25/2013.

Aroma: A bit of sweet chocolate up front. I can almost smell the viscousness. And then the barrels kick me in the face. It smells like I just took a bottle of Jack Daniels, agitated it and opened it up to sniff it. Bourbon, vanilla, oak is all there. Smells boozy as hell. (4)

Colour: Dark, dark, dark beer that pours like motor oil. Light does not penetrate. Comes with a 2cm mocha head that dissipates into the beer quickly. Lacing is sporadic and not much of a player here. (4)

Flavour: Phew. It's heavy on the bourbon and the barrel, but it's got a nice underlying sweet chocolate and toffee flavours. It's strong enough that it isn't completely overwhelmed by the bourbon barrels but not cloyingly sweet that it would be annoying. The malts of this beer is definitely in a supporting role. It is basically bourbon with a lot of oak and some vanilla. A bit of coffee bitterness throughout as well. Despite all the strong bourbon components, it ends up being tasty- it comes together pretty well. (4.5)

Mouthfeel: Very thick bodied, light on the carbonation. Finish is on the sweet and dry side. The beer has the smells and tastes of bourbon but there isn't a whole lot of heat to be detected. Definitely a sipper and not to be enjoyed alone. (4.25)

Overall: Excellent barrel aged stout that you don't mess around with. It's strong, intense and rich. Doesn't necessarily showcase all of its components as well as other beers do (BCBS, Black Note comes to mind) but the amount of bourbon flavour and aromas blows every other BA beer away. I don't always like having such strong bourbon presence in my beers- I would also like the sweet malts to show up even more here rather than being a supporting player. But I can't deny that this is a very good bourbon'ed up stout.. I was lucky to get it for $10 a bomber, so I'm not sure I'd pay full price ($16-19) to drink more once my stash is gone. (4.25)

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Photo of philbe311
4.37/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A - A slight finger's worth of deep menacing dark brown colored froth... Little or no retention... A very light swirl of misty lacing and uber thin collar is all that remains... The color is an inky flat black... Opaque with no light sneaking in anywhere... Some sluggish micro bubbled carbonation can be seen rising along the sides at the top of the glass... Appears to be a bit thick and viscous as I rock the glass back and forth...

S - A stellar delectable nose... Subtle well rounded notes of the Kentucky bourbon barrels are first to great the nose... There are also massive doses of rich milk chocolate and thick rich vanilla... Caramel and English toffee... Perhaps a hint of maple syrup... Some very faint roasted malt and light coffee scents linger beneath the surface... Quite appealing and intoxicating...

T - Delectable fudge brownies... Deep rich milk chocolate... Light vanilla notes... Caramel... Toffee... Subtle roasted malt... Subtle light coffee notes... The Kentucky bourbon notes don't really appear until the finish where they begin to crescendo and linger to a bit, but never over power...

M - Full bodied... Chewy... A bit viscous... Dense... Thick... Very lightly carbonated... Sleek and smooth... Even and consistent... Each sip is a pleasure...

D - A true testament to successful barrel aging... The Kentucky bourbon barrels compliment B.O.R.I.S, adding layers or depth and complexity and just the slightest boozy kick... It in no way masks the original beer... Dangerously quaffable given the near 10% ABV... Other than an unremarkable appearance, this one excels in every facet... I can highly recommend this brew and suggest it with a clear conscience and won't hesitate in seeking out again...

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Photo of Thehuntmaster
4.47/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

650ml bottle 9,4% Abv.
Served lightly chilled in an over sized wine glass.
No bottle date.

Appearance: Boris appears thick and viscous during the pour (more so than I would usually expect from a sub 10% beer) and settles an inky black in the glass, with a strong backlight only revealing a little deep red along the edges. Even the roughest of pours doesn’t yield much more than a thin layer of dark tan bubbles, while a swirl coats the glass in a thick brown residue and heavy alcohol legs.

Smell: Oh wow, this smells fantastic! The whiskey barrels are certainly present (but don’t dominate the nose like bourbon barrels often do) and provide a fantastic creamy vanilla character to the beer, while the base beer provides notes of rich dark chocolate brownies, roasted malt, dark caramel and some molasses. As the beer begins to warm, a little dark fruit character becomes apparent alongside some liquorice and a little toasted malt.

Taste: Just as the nose suggested, this is absolutely delicious! Notes include: Deep roasted malt, rich dark caramel, bittersweet dark chocolate, molasses, dark fruits, liquorice and a little whiskey character in the finish. One of the few faults I can find (and it is a small one) is that as the beer warms, the barrel character seems to get a little lost behind the other flavours.

Mouthfeel: Given the appearance I wasn’t expecting there to be much in the way of carbonation, however surprisingly the carbonation is of a medium level and quite creamy. The body is just about spot on – full and quite sticky.

Overall: This was my first beer Hoppin Frog and I must say, I am very impressed. I can’t wait to get to the other beers I have from these guys.

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Photo of lunarbrew
4.36/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sexy beer. Very dark and viscus with only a little dark brown head. This looks very tastey. Right up my alley as far as BA beers are concerned.

Bourbon forward. The beer smells dark, rich, umami-y, and a little sweet. Not too much of a roast/smoke smell here. The bourbon notes are oak, booze, vanilla, and toffee.

Awesome flavor! Wow is this good. There is a very strong booze and oak presence, which I really love in a BB stout. The flavors follow the smell nicely, although there is a very roasty taste that is covered in the nose--obviously a side effect of some hearty dark malt. This roast covers the sweetness some, which I think there could be a bit more of. While the flavors are delicious, my only complaint is that the beer is a little two-dimensional. I would love for some more nuanced bourbon flavors to come across.

The mouthfeel is excellent. Creamy, low-medium carbonation, full-bodied, and pretty heavy. While there is a syrupy consistency, the oils don't linger too much making this more drinkable than many thick BB Stouts.

Overall this beer was very impressive. I don't know if it justifies the high cost to play, but at the moment I have no regrets!

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Photo of KFBR392
3.96/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: dark burnt brown head forms on the pour. About a half a finger then dissipates to the edges of the glass. Pours pitch black with above average thickness.

Smell: Bright licorice sweet front to this brew. Malt and barley hit on the body of the beer. Sweet molasses adds to the brightness of this brew. Oatmeal hits on the body as well as the bourbon accents are light.

Taste: The sweetness theme continues here. A smooth front transitions into an bright oatmeal and dark chocolate. Nice hoppy accents in the body give it a unique twist. The barrel accents are light, I could use more of a presence. A roasted malt back end pleasantly bites and sticks on the palette long after drinking.

Mouthfeel: Clean, the body might be a little light for an RIS but nothing to get upset about.

Overall: I've liked all the Hoppin' Frog Stouts I've had so far. I expected a little more out of this one being the barrel aged version but it is still a very good beer.

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Photo of 57md
4.22/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance is almost pitch black with a half finger of tan head. The nose has roasted notes, but also some sherry to it. This offering is full-bodied, but not as overwhelming as D.O.R.I.S., which I had over a year ago.

The roasted bitterness grows on the finish and there is also a touch of bourbon present. All the flavors seem to blend together nicely.

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Photo of BradtheGreat7
4.54/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Review taken from notes a week ago(March 2013)

Got this filled off tap at Ashland Beverage Center(Ashland, Ky.). Poured into a 16 oz brown flip top growler. I'm assuming this is the most recent batch. Cool looking Frog Head tap handle. Poured into a nonic pint glass.

A - This thing is a wicked black with hints of dark brown painting the bottom corners. Rich medium brown head sits nicely on top. Bigger and fluffier than I expected. The black liquid produces a good bit of stick to the glass.

S - Black English malts with big whiffs of sweetness and some ridiculously crazy dark fruit. Good roastiness to the aroma with a woodiness that grabs you. Sweet caramel and vanilla like bourbon aroma. A small hint of licorice and spice. This is how a big stout is supposed to smell. Black and no nonsense.

T - big and bold alcohol flavors give off a nice complex flavor. Bourbon barrel goodness with sweet notes of caramel and vanilla. Thick molasses like within the sweetness. Roasted black malt and a touch of dark fruit. Black licorice and the hop spices balance the flavor.

M - pretty damn smooth for a stout of this size. I've read this stout was a bit thin, but I get nothing but a thick mouthfeel. Smooth and luscious. Goes down very nicely and I found it fairly easy to drink compared to some big stouts. But hey maybe it's just bc it came off tap. Idk.

O - Hoppin' Frog is a fine brewery and they have a stout thats as good as any I've ever had. With all the focus going to a certain well deserved Am Double Stout this time of year this thing was kind of just sitting there on tap getting no attention. Well, I'll tell you now, this thing will grab your attention and blow you away with its all business style. It has the quality to stand beside anything in the world. I've never had the standard Boris, but the barrel aged version is top shelf. I think they use Heaven Hill barrels. I'd like to know which specific bourbon was in those barrels. Regardless I'll buy this again if it's available. A fantastic experience. A fantastic stout.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.71/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

22 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard black pressure cap and appealing fun label acquired at a Binny's in Chicago and served into a conical Samuel Smith's pint glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are very high given its reputation and ratings, though I wasn't blown away by regular B.O.R.I.S. "Stout Aged in Whiskey Barrels." 9.4% ABV confirmed. 60 IBU.

Served straight from the fridge and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a one finger rich dark tan colour head of nice cream, great thickness, and pretty good (4+ minute) retention for the high ABV. Body colour is a solid nontransparent black. Opaque; nontransparent. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. I dig the luscious head; it's quite appealing. Right on the money for the style, overall. I can't wait to try it.

Sm: Whiskey is quite pungent here. Spicy hot whiskey, dark malts, cream, caramel, smooth oats, chocolate malt. The whiskey hides the oats; they were much more prominent in the non barrel aged variant. Woody barrel notes. Roast. Dark fruits - dark cherry, maybe some plum. Sweet, sticky. Vanilla. Not finding any coffee. An appealing aroma that adds a nice little something to the base beer with barrel aging. There's motivation for barrel aging here; I like it. I'm concerned about balance, but I'm looking forward to trying it. An aroma that isn't quite moderate in strength, but is well above average whilst retaining subtlety. Intriguing. I don't detect any yeast or hop character.

T: More sweet than anticipated. Not as hot as the aroma might suggest. Lots of chocolate malt, dark malts, caramel, and a bit of cream round out the body. Subtle whiskey notes hang about in the background, surging through a bit more on the finish - which doesn't exactly encourage the next sip. Not as roasty as I'd like, but there is detectable roast - which is more than I can say about many inferior imperial stouts. No floral or yeast character comes through. The sweetness bothers me after a while and definitely reduces drinkability. The chocolate notes are a highlight. I want more of the starchy oats like in the regular BORIS. Dark fruits never quite hit home, instead adding unnecessary sweetness without any real vibrant flavour. It's decently balanced, but its failure to emphasize any of its notes makes it come off a bit muted - or at least timid. The whiskey aging here is well executed, but there's an intrinsic heat to the whiskey. Little oak comes through but I do get some vanilla. A dash of spiciness from the whiskey. It's a tasty little stout, and I can see why it might have been the dog's bollocks in 2008.

Mf: Smooth, wet, sticky. Rolling oats add a nice smoothness without being too slick. Good carbonation. Nicely thick. Nice creaminess; it could do with more. Good body.

Dr: Drinkable in spite of its slightly present ABV. I've certainly had higher ABV stouts that hid their alcohol better. It's a sipper, but that's to be expected. I probably wouldn't bother with it in spite of its quality simply because while it's good, it's not exceptional. And at this price point, I can definitely get an exceptional stout. I look forward to trying more beers from Hoppin' Frog, but this didn't blow me away. I wouldn't mind trying it aged. I'd like to see them amp up the roast and amp up the oats. In my opinion, the oats are what set this imperial stout apart.

High B

Gets better as it warms.

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Photo of Gmann
3.89/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours an inky black color with a huge fluffy brown head that slowly settles.

The aroma is of dark toasted brown bread and light anise. Some dark chocolate covered cherries that have been soaked in whiskey. Subtle vanilla from the oak.

The taste has a big roasted flavor but its mellowed by the oats, not as bitey as a typical RIS. Some char. There is a general dark fruit notes that flows through. Some dark cherries and carob. Smooth vanilla and caramel provide some sweetness. The whiskey flavor is light but noticable and adds to the sweetness.

The stout is well bodied and some tingly carbonation. Fairly smooth throughout. Starts sweet on the palate but finishes with a roasted bitterness. ABV is well hidden. Slightly sticky.

A good imperial stout. Quite smooth. Not much whiskey flavor, though.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
4.18/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Portion of a 22 oz bottle poured into a Hunahpu's snifter. From notes.

A: Pours a very dark brown color. The head is a one-finger tan shade.

S: I first notice plenty of sweet chocolate, backed by some dark fruits and a good whiskey character. The barrel influence is subtle and balanced within the base beer on the nose.

T: The first sip comes off sweet and fruity, with the whiskey barrel appearing on the midtaste and finish - like the nose, it's subtle and well integrated with the mocha finish. Hints of oatmeal are found on the back end, too. Good complexity here.

M: The body itself is creamy and medium bodied. Lots of lingering stickiness still gives way to a drying sensation on the back of the palate. I'd reckon it's a little harsh for 9.4%, otherwise I have no real complaints about the mouthfeel.

O: This was probably my favorite beer of the day. I'd definitely buy it again, even with its price point.

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Photo of johnnnniee
4.17/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a solid black with a thinnish tan head that musters but then recedes. Smells of roast, chocolate, caramel, vanilla, light bourbon and oak with hints of dark fruit. The flavor is sweet with a roasty earthy edge. some chocolate but more roast and coffee coming through with a solid shot of bourbon flavor. Light vanilla and wood with a smattering of dark fruits to round it all out. Medium to thick body with a sweet almost syrupy mouthfeel and a light level of carbonation. Wow this is a damn fine brew! The barrel thins the body a bit which I like because the regular version is thick and sticky. Very Nice brew.

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Photo of stewart124
4.69/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

I believe this is a bottle from 2009.

Oily thick. Tan head.

Huge nose of stone fruits. Rye whiskey comes off on the nose.

Silky smooth. Huge mouthfeel. The whiskey and oak comes off beautifully. Great bitterness feel. I'm not sure I have had a bigger Russian imperial stout.


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Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. Oatmeal Imperial Stout from Hoppin' Frog Brewery
95 out of 100 based on 588 ratings.