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BORIS Royale - Hoppin' Frog Brewery

Not Rated.
BORIS RoyaleBORIS Royale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

68 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 68
Hads: 181
Avg: 4.14
pDev: 10.63%
Wants: 145
Gots: 67 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Hoppin' Frog Brewery visit their website
Ohio, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.40% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: jampics2 on 05-26-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 68 | Hads: 181
Photo of Preismj
4.76/5  rDev +15%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

a: Jet black pour with a nice fluffy espresso head. About a quarter inch on a mild pour. wonderful and sticky...great lacing here. I actually noticed that this beer stained the glass after I was done drinking it. My glass actually looked brown. Incredible.

s: a kick of sweet caramel/maple with that booze that I love so much from my Canadian whiskey. Notes of cocoa in the back drop and the malty sweetness that I would associate with a big old steaming bowl of oatmeal. Nothing like a shot of whiskey on the side with my breakfast.

t: so much going on here. I had this beer at three separate temperatures. It was the booziest when cold, which I found odd...but loved that I could drink this warm and get little to no heat from it. Oats and barley with hints of sweetness from a maple like flavor. Coffee and cocoa seem to make an appearance, but the special guest is the smooth transition I get into what I wish I could confirm is Crown Royal. it is sweet and warming, but not in the least overpowering (at the warm temperature, it is perfect). I had high expectations on this one and it exceeded. To be fair, though, I could live on Crown. This leaves an incredible aftertaste as well that is of sweet maple and notes of whiskey.

m: thick as thick can be, but oh so silky smooth. This is like butter swirling on the tongue and it coats and hangs around for minutes. molasses in the mouth.

o: My goodness, this is a powerful brew. At the coldest temp, it is boozy enough to make you question the 9.5%. But when warm, you wonder how anyone could complain about the booziness. However, once you are done...don't stand up too fast because I'd wager the 9.5% was a typo. What a bang for your buck on this.

I recommend trying this at several temps...but the flavors really pop around room temp. This is something to be experienced, and a truly miraculous beer. If you like whiskey...grab it. If you love great beer...grab it.

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Photo of Dan3279
4.7/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Mind if I have some of your tasty beverage to wash this down with?

I was really excited about this beer the second I heard about this and was very lucky to get a few bottles through a friend who got them at the release.

I gently poured the 22oz bottle into a pint glass to find a body that was black as night with a slight chocolate brown colored head.

The aroma is welcoming and strong. You get a big hit of sweetness with chocolate, and roasted malts with hints of whiskey, coffee and vanilla.

The taste was exceptional (almost as good as a $5 shake). You get all of the flavors of the traditional BORIS but the whiskey is a great touch. The thing that I loved about this beer was that to me the the flavors were so mellow and blended together perfectly. For being a fresh barrel aged beer it didn't have the same "hotness" that others do that haven't been aged. To me it tastes like this beer had been aged for a few years.

The mouthfeel was great, for a heavy beer it was enjoyable to drink. As the beer warmed up the flavors really came out and the beer just got better and better.

Overall this is a great beer and a pure joy to drink. I took my time sipping the beer and really enjoyed it. I really hope that they produce more of this beer in the future I would love to get my hands on a few more bottles.

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Photo of adamette
4.65/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Live Review. Poured from the 22 oz. bomber that I bought at World Wines & LIquor a few weeks ago into a clean, clear pint glass. I recall the price being $12.99 but it might have been as high as $14.99. No observed “best by” date but a silver sticker with “Cleveland Beer Week Special Release” printed on it indicates that it is probably about a month old. That means that it likely has about another 5 years (or more) on it.

A Actually dark brown (!) head over an absolutely oil black body that refuses to allow any light through. I have to give this look high marks. I simply love it! 4.5

S Well, some of the darkest roast malt with whiskey notes. I expected that but I have always appreciated B.O.R.I.S.’s soft, rounded edges to the smell, taste and it looks like I will not be disappointed here. 4.5

T Simply love the taste of the dark roast malt, whiskey caramel notes and again, the smoothness that is not common in this style. This is a great, great beer that I cannot think of how I would improve it. 5.0

M Smooth as could be expected for such a big beer with the elevated ABV %. Really, it slips past your mouth so easily. I cannot think of how I might improve the feel and maintain the taste. 5.0

D/O Drinkability is where the beer suffers a bit since it is so huge, such elevated ABV but it really was soooo easy to drink, believe me! Overall this is a world class beer in my opinion. 4.0

Notes: I am proud to assign an A+ to this beer. Recommended to anyone reading this review!

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.6/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

huge thanks to derek for this one, seriously man thank you.

black as night with a huge cream colored head. Lace was so thick I could not see through the glass.

hint of chocolate, some coffee, maybe even some dark fruity smells hidden in there, nice overal aroma. with deep coffee notes starting to come through, black strap molasses and huge licorice and tobacco with touches of vanilla. Roasted, caramel sweetness, The alcohol can definatly be tasted and this is warm going down, yummy.

overall easily my favorite of the boris!

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Photo of FosterJM
4.58/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

800th Review on BA
Bottle to Snifter
2011 Release

HUGE thank you to GuruDel for grabbing a bottle in trade for me!!! Such a Crown fan had to have one of these

App- An extremely dark brown, almost to an inky black color. Even if it was brown, it was void of color or accent coloration. A very fast receding one finger head with out a lot of lace or cling. As it fell, left an outer ring of bubbles with a bit of whispy notes on top.

Smell- When you first stick your nose in the glass you are greeted with a big stout and a lot going on. Hard to find the little nuances but some are there. It of course had the whisky, the chocolate and some roast. Decerable I think was a little of the oatmeal.

Taste- A beautiful mix of a perfect balance of chocolate, roast and whiskey. When you first take a sip it has that biting whiskey and oak note that makes you do that whiskey face like when you were 17 and stole a bottle from your dad. On the backend it greets you with subtle dark chocolate and a little roasted malt note. I have to say this sat in my cellar at 55 for a few months and I think it certainly helped this to mellow out.

Mouth- A medium/full body with a medium/low carbonation feel. The residual flavors are not many, whiskey and roast. Very nice lasting flavors.

Drink- A great treatment to a very well done base beer from OH. This was tempered and smooth at points and biting at others. The whiskey oak barrels worked wonders for me and I was very happy to have a beer like this around for #800. Again, I can't thank GuruDel enough for this one. If you have the chance grab a bottle in trade. You won't be sorry.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.57/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I am very appreciative to stakem via jaymesbawned for the chance to try this at Stakem's during a recent collaborative brew session at his house. The beer was poured into two DFH Signature glasses chilled from the bomber.

This is one viscous looking brew -very rich and black with an opacity not many can rival with thick quickly condensing medium brown cap with a tiny bead. The head condenses to a ring, but revives when swirled and the lace clings in a spotty sort of random way. The smell is heavenly! it is not just dark cocoa and vanilla, no it is more than that: deep layers of chocolate truffles and sweet caramel cream with the vanilla refusing to relax yet adding to the complexity with a nice deep odor of whiskey to augment the malt smell yet not completely overtake it. The light wood and alcohol scents round the aroma out nicely and aid the mild floral notes in the vanilla quality of the barrel scent. I think the feel is the only area I was impressed by but not knocked out with since it is full yet the alcohol does creep up slightly and a good amount of malt, yet the whiskey creates a lasting alcohol impression even though the bitterness of the hops delivers a nice complexity and balance. I enjoyed the way the body shields the complete force of the alcohol and the drying effect is not as much as it could be. This is not a cloying overly sweet beer even though it has a big malt presence.

This Stout is excellent in so many ways. The initial cocoa and malt flavors with deep vanilla and caramel elements are a great entry point which is just enough window for the barrel flavors to emerge alongside them and spread out with a serious smooth vanilla flavor that washes and seems interwoven with the stout base. A silky element that is whiskey flavored at times and at others some spice elements dominate. The dark maltiness of the brew adds a light bitter component that never really subsides, but yet compliments the hop flavor well and delivers a very cocoa-like quality that gives a sufficent support to the vanilla tinges from the barrel. I love how the flavors are so intense yet don't seem disjointed at all, they work well together as the canadian whiskey becomes a little more prominent in the taste near cellar temperature. I was so pleased I had to savor this one for a while -possibly the best version of Boris I have had yet, just a plethora of stout and whiskey barrel flavors to get lost in.

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Photo of stakem
4.55/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to jaymesbawned for picking this up for me.

Before I even open the bottle, I'm loving this beer. The label and notation on the side is priceless. Shared with Slatetank and wishuwerebeer, poured into a DFH snifter. This brew is black, a fine ring of lighter brown clarity is seen through the edge when the brew is held to the light. A finger of rich, creamy tan head appears and slowly fades to a ring that holds around the edge of the glass. Some spotty lacework clings to the glass.

The smell of this brew is cocoa sweetness somewhat reminescent of brownie batter. Rich in chocolate with hints of sweet vanilla and coconut that is lightly toasted with an increasing amount of wooden scents. Some tangy whiskey elements come through the back imparting a bit of a fruit scent. As the brew warms, the alcohol presence gets increasingly more bold to the point of being fusel.

The taste is infused with whiskey to spirit spiked alcohol burn. Rich cocoa batter mixes with a woodsy element and some fruity alcohol esters. There is a contrasting herbal hop element which faintly makes it's presence known. Plenty of rich chocolate character mixes with the alcohol on multiple levels to create a deep layering of enjoyable flavors. The aftertaste leans more on the oak aspect than through the body with a lingering taste left in the mouth that isnt quite roasted yet delicious in a chocolate caramel or toffee sort of way.

This is a full bodied brew that is chewy and creamy. Very smooth feel despite it's modest level of carbonation. The alcohol is bold yet well integrated in flavor. If you are sensitive to alcohol burn in a beer, I'd suggest serving this one a little cooler so the alcohol doesn't come out quite as quick. Color me impressed with this beer. It packs a punch seemingly harder than 10% but I loved it. I'm a sucker for a well made barrel aged stout, this one is fantastic. With a base like Boris, I'm pretty sure Hoppin Frog could age this beer in used gym socks and it would still be awesome. I wish I had more of this.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Thorpe429. Thanks Mike!

Served alongside B.O.R.I.S. & Barrel-Aged B.O.R.I.S.

All three variants had remarkably similar appearances: deep, dark black with a thin beige cap, and fairly low carbonation.

The aroma brings a more potent whiskey scent than the Barrel-Aged B.O.R.I.S., with a similar roasted malt profile.

Terrific flavor. I am a huge fan of this beer, as well as the other two variants. In addition to the whiskey and barrel flavors, notes of oak, vanilla, and chocolate blend beautifully into the beer.

The feel is creamy and smooth, with subtle heat in the finish to tie it all together.

Great beer. Recommended.

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Photo of Bierguy5
4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle, 9.4% abv. Pitch black color. Great looking mocha head holds together pretty well for few minutes.

Roasty malt, and chocolate aroma. Some caramel, and vanilla as well. Nose finishes with some wood, and soft whiskey notes. Maybe a slight hint of dark fruit.

Very roasty up front, with some bittersweet dark chocolate. Soft hints of vanilla. A good amount of wood, and some great whiskey flavors. Finishes dry, with some tannins.

Medium body, approaching full. Lower carbonation. Some warmth from alcohol, but not overwhelming. I like the different dimension the whiskey barrel adds here. Very well done.

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Photo of camil1mj
4.45/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received in an person trade at the FFF 15th Party from Misterhops.

A: Wonderful, deep, dark brown. Mocha colored head.

S: Wonderful whiskey and chocolate notes.

T: Immediate taste of Crown Royal. The barrel aging did this one wonders. Then chocolate, toffee and coffee.

M: The whiskey makes this a little thin. The one detractor.

O: Easily the best BORIS! Love it.

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Photo of CFHMagnet
4.43/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Obtained this at the release. If you check out their photos on fb, I'm THAT guy...the guy who showed up to a craft beer release wearing a blue miller lite hat. What can I say? It's an old comfortable hat that may represent a beer I no longer drink...but why spend my limited income on a new hat when I can spend it on good beer? :)

A. A heavy pour on this beautiful baby got me an inch of head that possesses the color and look of a vanilla cappuccino. The body is as black as pitch, and I detect no traces of light coming through when I hold it up to the light. The head fades slowly, but keeps the top frosted the whole beer through. A little bit of lacing is noted throughout enjoyment.

S. The first smell that I pick up is dark fruit soaked in booze. Digging deeper, I get the delicious scents of coffee, chocolate, roasted malt and a hint of wood for good measure.

T. The dark fruit and malt are up front on this one, and they travel over my tongue lovingly before giving way to whiskey and wood, though it must be noted that the whiskey isn't overpowering, in fact I find it delightfully well balanced. This segues into the coffee and chocolate flavors that give the beer a beautiful ending. A hint of burn sticks with you in the back of your throat, and gets a bit stronger throughout the beer, especially as it warms. This is mellowed by a woody, nutty and chocolatey coffee flavor that persists in your mouth and throat between sips. A strong, enjoyable beer that stays with you.

M. Heavy bodied, but smooth. The carbonation is perfect for helping this beer move along without really making itself a big factor in the mouthfeel. It coats your mouth but isn't sticky, and is honestly the perfect consistency that I could ask for in this style.

O. This has been sitting in my fridge since the release. I was attempting to wait until it had aged 6 months, but temptation got the better of me. This beer really shines to me as one that could make a serious mark in the style. Here's hoping the next release is bigger! Cheers!

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Photo of MbpBugeye
4.42/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Hoppin' Frog Brewery's Barrel-Aged Bodacious Oatmeal Russian Imperial Stout Royale, or BORIS Royale for us nerds, or just Royale for us with no life. This is an introduction to a beer that, by now, needs no further introduction. Aged in Crown Royal barrels with obnoxiously overdone Pulp Fiction references added.

Purchased on my behalf by Proxy889. Poured into a Jackie O's snifter, just to keep it Ohio.

Boris always pours velveteen. His foam always rises slowly to a dense cap. A few rings of lace are always left, clinging to the side of your favorite snifter. His blackened body is always as welcoming as it is foreboding. It seems Boris retains his class, even when speaking with a northern accent, eh?

I've never known a Canadian who could sweet talk me like Boris's cousin. Candied stanzas of cordial cherries waft forth, like an aphrodisiac. Things only get hotter as the beer gets warmer. Long draws of whiskey worn oak soften an alcoholic blow. Indeed a whiskey-forward aroma, but quite the dessert of a presentation.

Having been wined by an admittedly corny, denim-clad Boris, I'm ready to be dined. Generous with the alcohol, Boris is lookin' for some action tonight. The sweetness of the aroma leads in nicely to the flavor, however. We skip right to the final course, coffee with cherry-chocolate torte. A rich black forest mousse builds a platform, hoisting maraschino cherries to taste buds. Things end with an after dinner cocktail, based on a stiff whiskey.

Uhh, I think the date analogies should end before I get to the category titled "Mouthfeel", for everyone's sake. And I can't handle anymore "that's what she said" BMs than I already get, so let's bring this review to a happy ending, before I make a mess of things. I mean I don't want to open anything I can't handle. And let's face it, I've already made this thing too long already. Soooo...
The mouthfeel remains very Hoppin' Frog. Big, buff, studly and stout. A mouthfeel as silken as the flavor and aroma, and maybe even more so. Carbonation is low, and I can even say fleeting. I'm nearing the end of my first glass and its at about nil. So as tempted you might be to swirl up this amazing aroma, tread lightly, lest you wind up with an under carbonated second half. The finish is fertile, supple and nowhere near dry, allowing for the creamy feel to linger as long as the boozy, chocolate laden aftertaste.

I don't know why, but I had low expectations for this beer. I guess, despite being proven wrong many times, that I think aging a beer in a different barrel won't yield interesting results. Well this will be the last time I reside in that opinion. This one is stunningly unique and miles apart from Boris and his cousin from Kentucky. Whooda thunk, the canook is the most resolved of the family tree.

Seek this out! I'm not just saying that because I'm and Ohioan, I don't have any for trade and I'm sad.

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Photo of superspak
4.4/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle into snifter, no bottle date but I got this on the first release back in May of this year. Pours thick black color with a small dark tan head with good retention that reduces to a thin cap that lasts. Small bits of lacing clinging to the glass as well. Aromas of big vanilla, caramel, toffee, dark chocolate, roasted malt, and whiskey. Great aromas here with good balance and strength. Not as bourbon forward as the normal BA BORIS. Taste of big dark chocolate, caramel, toffee, roasted malt, vanilla, oak, and whiskey. Fair amount of bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of chocolate, caramel, vanilla, whiskey, and oak on the finish for a while. Low-moderate carbonation and full bodied; with a very creamy and slick mouthfeel. Alcohol is fairly well hidden with only a large warming present after the finish. Alcohol definitely cleans the palate in this case and makes this not cloying at all with the lush body. Great drinkability but it is still a sipper. Overall this is a fantastic barrel aged imperial stout. Great balance of flavor, highly enjoyable, and a lush mouthfeel that has me wanting another sip.

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Photo of InebriatedJoker
4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

They call it "Royale with wood"

Poured from bottle into pint goblet -No best by date visible -*( picked up today at release pretty sure it's fresh)

A: Poured as black as Jules hair from Pulp Fiction - one finger head that dissipated into a thin tan lacing,good carbonation.

S:Deep roasted malts with slight whiskey,chocolate hints.

T: Dark bitter coffee with deep roasted malts, bakers chocolate, hints of molasses,slight warming whiskey hints,some wood chip taste as well.

O: Overall this one hit the spot -The whiskey hints were present but by no means overpowering,very smooth and mellow -The coffee and chocolates were well blended and balanced , very well made RIS - easy to drink.

Side note -I love the Pulp Fiction twist they put on the lable the frog with Jules hair and mustache and the beer discription is classic.

Fortunate is he,who in the name of brewing and good beer,shepherds the weak through the valley of macrobrews. For he is truly his brothers keeper,and the finder of lost taste buds.

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Photo of CaptCleveland
4.38/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber, 8oz pour, scant lacing, thick legs during the tasting. Black, opaque liquid.

Four years on this bottle and still hot. Bourbon, burnt malt, spice and a bit of earth.

First sip carries through the bourbon, a bit thin compared to the base brew. Subtle char, oat malts balanced by some nice hop bitterness. The barrel really adds to the complexity.

Full body, nicely carbonated, a bit chewy.

Wonderful take on the base brew. The Canadian barrel is delicious and creates a nice unique take on an already fine imperial stout.

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Photo of Jparkanzky
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bottle acquired at the release, poured into a snifter from another brewery (not sure why telling you which particular one, would make a difference)

A) Pours very dark, black, with a mocha head.

S) light whiskey hints, mild coffee

T) Dominated by wood and alcohol flavors.... The coffee, vanilla and sweet flavors from the standard B.O.R.I.S. are present, but the alcohol is still too hot to really let them shine.

M) Feels fairly viscous, more so than the appearance. The alcohol flavors that are ever present in the taste aren't there in the feel of this one, as in there is no real "burn"

O) In the spirit of full-disclosure, I love bourbon... particularly Blanton's, Booker's, Baker's, etc... and Maker's Mark is a quality stand-by for most bar atmospheres. I can't stomach Jack Daniel's, Jim Beam, or "blended Canadian Whiskeys" such as Seagram's Seven or Crown Royal.... with that said, The "light flavors" of Crown Royal ( that make me avoid it in pure form) make for a great beer. I prefer this over the standard Bourbon-Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. variation. Good stuff. My wife and I are questioning the accuracy of the 9.4% ABV after splitting one though!

Again, this was split with my wife, so I would be remiss to not provide her reaction in addition to my own. My wife took a sip, and her exact words were "This is a happy beer" I don't know what that means, as it is from my wife's personal critiquing criteria, but the anger she felt over the amount spent beer shopping that day was at least temporarily calmed.

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Photo of output01x
4.32/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle (no date) into a snifter glass.

A strong pour yields a 1 1/2-finger mocha-colored head that slowly recedes to a thick dusting and thick foam ring. The body is nearly perfect black with no traces of color when held to light. Thick lacing attempts to cling to the sides of the glass, but slowly falls from its own weight.

Dark, roasted malt aromas with notes of dark chocolate and burnt coffee beans. The nose is punctuated by the classic whiskey aroma that really sets this beer apart from other bourbon barrel aged stouts.

Dark malts, dark chocolate, and dark coffee. With a twist. A mellow whiskey flavor with a slight woodiness adds a whole new layer to this beer and compliments the flavors very well. The alcohol heat is far from excessive and can barely be noticed once this beer warms up a bit.

Full bodied with great carbonation, this beer has a decently creamy mouthfeel. The carbonation definitely helps to make this beer drinkable, but the heavy flavor and thick body keep it a sipper.

Unlike the regular Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S., Royale does not need aging. This beer is most definitely ready to be enjoyed now. Of course, I would be interested to see how aging will change this beer, but it is great how it is now.

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Photo of nrbw23
4.32/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a pitch black color with a nice dense brown head. Head has pretty solid retention and leaves some nice layered lacing.

S- I'm picking up darker fruits, quite a bit of booze, wood, and vanilla. Seems like a normal Boris with quite a big kick.

T- Taste is really good. Tons of whiskey action here, with vanilla, dark fruits, coffee and a solid booze to it.

M- Full in body and low carbonation.

O- I'm pretty impressed with this one and this is my favorite of all the Boris brews by far.

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Photo of prototypic
4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Boris Royale pours a pitch black color. Looks onyx and ominous. No light cuts through at all. A very thin collection of dark mocha colored bubbles collects on the surface. They disappear quickly and leave a very thin, spotty lacing behind. Love the color!

The nose is impressive. It’s very malty. A mix of chocolate, caramel, and light roasted malts smell delicious. Roasted coffee is also noted. It’s a great complement to the malts. Whiskey is definitely noted, but doesn’t overwhelm the other scents. It seems to have a light to moderate presence. I like that. Light notes of dark fruit and molasses are noted on the tail. Alcohol is definitely there, but doesn’t seem too strong. Smell s good.

The flavor is even more impressive. The malt base alone is excellent. Bittersweet dark chocolate, caramel and subtle roasted notes provide a very sturdy, tasty backbone. Coffee is rather prominent in the mix and really adds an extra dimension to the flavor. As a coffee fan, I love it. Whiskey does have a light to moderate presence, though its effect is big. It drives the flavor up a notch all by itself. Whatever amount of time this was in barrels was just about perfect. There is a light, tangy dark fruit flavor and a touch of molasses on the tail. They’re light though. Alcohol is there, but isn’t warm or hot. Excellent!

The body is on the heavy side of medium. Carbonation is light and soft. It’s definitely nice and smooth. I wouldn’t mind just a tad more body. It’d be damn near perfect with just a bit more. This stuff goes down far too easy for a big stout in any event.

I’ve come to expect that every Hoppin’ Frog beer with some variation of the name “Boris” is going to be damn good. Boris Royale is definitely that. I’m not the biggest Crown Royal fan, but utilizing those barrels certainly worked out well in this instance. The whiskey flavor is an excellent complement to the stout flavors. If you can find a bottle, grab one. It’s pricey, but it’s well worth at least one purchase.

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Photo of seeswo
4.3/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle generously shared by levifunk (thanks Levi!)

Pours very dark brown with a small amount of off-white head. Looks about right. Smell is nice and forward with the spirits from the North. Whiskey, oak, roast and chocolate come through. It smells very similar to BA BORIS, but maybe a bit more interesting. The taste is very smooth whiskey, chocolate, oak, roasted malts. Very easy drinking. Comes together really nice even right now. A touch boozy, but it comes off in this beer like that is actually what you want. Not harsh by any means. Medium body, medium carbonation. This beer was enjoyed two weeks after having a full batch 1 - batch 5 BA BORIS vertical. Overall, I think this was the best of the BA BORIS bunch. We may have made a Cuvee that would exceed this beer, but that took a lot of blending across batches to achieve. This seems to have a smoothness to it that the newer batches of BA BORIS don't have, and in the older ones that do have it, there is something else off about it (batch 1, way to oaky, batch 2, totally different recipe - too malty, etc.). Definite winner.

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Photo of womencantsail
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Dan for sharing.

A: The beer pours almost black in color with an off-white head.

S: Definitely get some barrel notes on this one. Plenty of booze along with bourbon and vanilla, a touch of oak, too. Sweet caramel and molasses along with a touch of licorice and plenty of roasted malts.

T: Sweet caramel, toffee, and molasses to begin. A bit of brown sugar and licorice add to the sweetness, as do bourbon and vanilla. A light bitterness of roasted malts and a fair amount of oak.

M: Fairly full bodied with a medium carbonation.

O: Really quite nice. One of the best iterations of BORIS thus far.

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Photo of KAP1356
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thought I missed the boat after the first release, but was lucky enough to grab several bottles at the Naked Evil release. 22 oz bottle poured into a snifter...

A - Pours an almost completely black with some dark brown highlights. A nice milk chocolate color head forms about a half of a finger thick and recedes to a collar of the same color.

S - Heavy whiskey aromas mixed with vanilla, wood, and chocolate. Molasses, dark fruits and some slight coffee come through too adding nicely.

T - Toffee, molasses, whiskey and oaky-woodiness all up front. Chocolate, vanilla, molassesand dark fruits follow next. Really nice flavors mixing together. Some brown sugar and roasted malts come through. It's a smoother whiskey flavor that I notice. Could I tell it was crown royal? No. BUT I did notice a smoother profile.

M - Full bodied beer with a medium level of carbonation. Really nice in the feel. Creamy and smooth overall.

O - Really enjoyed this one. I want to try it side to side with the regular barrel aged version. Would be interested to see the little differences. Overall, a really nice beer.

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Photo of domtronzero
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bottle. No dates on the bottle.

A - Very dark brown with a small, lingering ring of dense, tiny bubbles. Head is off-white. Little lacing.

S - Sweet whisky aromas (yep, without an 'e') actually reminiscent of Crown Royale. Sweet oaky character, chocolate and roasty malts. Sweet caramelly malts.

F/M - Sweet caramelly and dark chocolatey malts up front. Then the silky sweet whisky flavor. It may be a testament to the power of persuasion but it really has a Crown character. Slight vanilla character in the finish. The dark roasty malts and moderate bitterness help to dry out the finish a little. Medium full bodied with moderate carbonation. The CO2 is just right in fact.

O - Another outstanding offering from Hopping Frog. It's a great BA stout and definitely worth seeking out, especially for the whisky character that isn't found in many other beers, especially any beer I've ever had.

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Photo of mwill7287
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed in celebration of the St. Ignatius Wildcats’ 5th soccer state title in 8 years, and 3rd in the last 4.

Poured from 22oz. bomber into 11oz. GLBC snifter.

Appearance: Pours pitch black with almost no head or lacing after a fairly gentle pour. Little lacing that there is has a mocha color. Virtually no sign of carbonation on the glass. My snifter looks like a black hole. NB., on the pour for the second half of the bottle, a nice thin mocha tan head sits atop the brew and retains for the majority of the drink. 4.25/5

Smell: First thing I notice is whiskey and a smoked presence. Quite woody, almost fireplace smelling. Chocolates and coffees of the stout emerge on later sniffs. 4.25/5

Taste: Starts off with the woody whiskey notes mixed beautifully with chocolate and strong coffee tones. Taste progresses to more smoky and woody, leaving a predominantly coffee-whiskey aftertaste. The woodiness of the beer is definitely more pronounced than in other beers I’ve had. A fruit of aging in whiskey rather than bourbon barrels, perhaps. 4.5/5

Mouthfeel: Pretty thick, syrupy, though not overly sticky. Low carbonation and bitterness makes the mouthfeel fine and dandy. Quite drinkable. 4.5/5

Overall: A very interesting variation on a increasingly common style of beer. Finishing this one bottle is not a problem in any case. A high ABV will keep me from indulging in more of it, however. Scrumptious. 4.5/5

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Photo of angrybabboon
4.23/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Massive thanks to Goblinmunkey7 for acquiring this for my birthday. This has been a top want since the beer was announced. My_body_is_ready.jpg


Appearance: Pours black, perhaps even a bit heavier than other iterations of Boris - decent size brown head, fades to a decent ring and some spots of lacing

Smell: Burnt malts and a lovely undercurrent of Crown Royal - dark chocolate, baker's chocolate, with some burnt and roasty coffee - characteristic Crown Royal barrel woodiness and whiskey

Taste: What's this, Crown Royal in my stout? (What? SAY "WHAT" AGAIN) - Dark, roasty, and burnt chocolate malts - dark chocolate, chocolate chips, and burnt coffee - a moderate level of burnt bitterness -burnt brownies and some toffee - the Crown Royal is very obvious and works very well - lots of whiskey, woody, lightly smoky

Mouthfeel: On the light side of heavy, slick and oily, with a woody finish

Overall: Best served with Big Kahuna Burgers

This is what I wanted. I'm not entirely sure why, but I am a fan of Canadian whiskey. I've grown oddly tired of bourbon barrel aged stouts, and I love this novelty of Crown Royal barrels. This wins.

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BORIS Royale from Hoppin' Frog Brewery
91 out of 100 based on 68 ratings.