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Imperial Eclipse Stout - Elijah Craig (12 Year) - FiftyFifty Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Imperial Eclipse Stout - Elijah Craig (12 Year)Imperial Eclipse Stout - Elijah Craig (12 Year)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
98
world-class

273 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 273
Hads: 1,720
Avg: 4.43
pDev: 7.67%
Wants: 837
Gots: 725 | FT: 57
Brewed by:
FiftyFifty Brewing Co.
California, United States | website

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout | 11.90% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Jmoore50 on 12-29-2009

Imperial Stout aged 200 days in an Elijah Craig bourbon barrel.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 273 | Hads: 1,720
Photo of IKR
4.38/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2012 Vintage

Appearance: Very dark brown bordering on black with a modest beige head that slowly faded. The head appeared to stick around longer than that on my 2012 Evan Williams (same tulip glass).

Smell: Mild Bourbon (less than that in my 2012 Evan Williams), coffee/roasted malt aromas, brown sugar and some vanilla notes.

Taste: Bourbon, roast malts, vanilla, caramel/brown sugar and oak notes. The finish is fairly dry with Bourbon, roast malts notes and mild hop notes. To my tastes, The Elijah Craig had a more restrained Bourbon presence than that of my 2012 Evan Williams.

Mouth-feel: Medium bodied with a moderate level of carbonation.

Overall: Good beer. It really is interesting to see the impact the different barrels have on the Eclipse series.

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Photo of pmlondrigan
4.38/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Black, yup black. Coffee colored head, coffee with milk that is. Aroma is muted however what is there is chocolate, vanilla, charcoal and well perhaps a bit of honey. On the palate is where this beer shines! Milk chocolate, vanilla, oh my mint I can actually detect mint. Charcoal is big and I also get some nice bourbon soaked woody oak. Had you never had a beer with honey as an ingredient you wouldn't know, but if you have then it is clear honey is present here and a truly brilliant addition to a stout. A very rich beer it is, thick, slick and chewy. Must say this beer would be a 5 overall, but it is a tad bit too sweet.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.52/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a FiftyFifty Eclipse snifter.

Finally getting around to trying this beer. I've been excited about this one for some time. Shared with the group during a FiftyFifty themed tasting.

The beer appears near black with a thin beige head. The aroma is vanilla, perhaps some toasted coconut, roast, chocolate, oak. Lovely. The taste follows suit. Simply delicious. A standout among the FiftyFifty Eclipse series.

It was interesting sipping this side by side with the Elijah Craig 18 Eclipse. I think both are fabulous beers, each offering a myriad of flavors. Highly recommended.

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Photo of kevanb
4.42/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle #756, 2011 vintage, served in a snifter.

The beer pours a deep jet black, hues of dark cola brown come through when held to the light, intensely opaque. A thin mocha head appears but dissipates very quickly, leaving behind a trace of film atop the beer and no real lacing. The aroma is of charred wood, rich chocolate, sweet vanilla, bourbon and faint coffee, well rounded, extremely inviting and pleasing. The flavors are wonderfully complex, strong bourbon, rich chocolate, smooth vanilla, roasted coffee and charred wood, just as the nose lead on, a bit of molasses and pitted fruit does come to the tongue as the beer warms that gives on a touch of added complexity. The body is good, a tad thinner than other barrel aged stouts, not as creamy or motor oily as others, but still works well for the beer, the carbonation is spot on, a bit lively and zesty as it goes down with a great smooth finish.

Verdict: Another incredible rendition of Eclipse. This beer never ceases to amaze in it's depth of flavor and general palatability and each barrel variant brings out something unique and different than the others, a joy to drink.

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Photo of Holland
4.33/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to CheapBeerBuzz for this beauty!

A: dark brown to black, not very viscous, very nice tan head with excellent retention creating a froth on top. Same as the EC 18 but with a more foamy head.

S: bourbon and oak are slight in smell along with some vanilla.

T: dark fruits are heavy, but this has quite a bourbon and wood flavor along with some vanilla.

M: missing some body, but overall very good. Well carbonated with fine bubbles. Very creamy.

O: excellent beer. When I first opened it, I didn't think it would be very good. Wrong. Hope they make it again, and make it at a less steep price ($30/22 ounce bottle). Not quite as enjoyable as the EC 18, but really close.

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Photo of tarheels86
3.54/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber with purple wax #478 courtesy of FickSD on BA shared at the Toronado. Poured a deep, clear brown with no head. Nose was rich with figs, raisins, oak, some light spicy alcohol, molasses, maple. Taste is very sweet, dark fruit forward, spicy alcohol, dry oak. Sticky sweet palate. 8/3/7/3/14=3.5

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Photo of Falcon91Wolvrn03
4.63/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Appearance – A very dark brownish black color that is just slightly translucent. Has a nice thick head that dissipates quickly to a thin layer. Leaves a medium-light wet lacing.

Smell – Roasted malts, a nicely sweet smelling bourbon, oak and vanilla.

Taste – Sweet bourbon, malts, and vanilla.

Mouthfeel – Creamy, smooth, very little carbonation, with a mild bourbon aftertaste.

Drinkability – I like bourbon beers best with a little sweetness to them. This one has it.

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Photo of ehammond1
4.39/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle (2011)

Super Junior Market
San Diego, CA

(Aged for 1 year)

Very dark brown, nearly black in color, without a lot of visible carbonation and not much head. This does leave sticky spots of lacing down the glass. Not a particularly heavy or substantial looking stout.

Lovely aroma, especially as the beer inches closer and closer to room temperature. The familiar coconut, bourbon, chocolate, wood, roast, and coffee elements combine here for something quite lovely.

The flavor follows similarly with chocolate, bourbon, and earthy vanilla flavors combining. There is hardly any trace of alcohol harshness. This is incredibly drinkable.

Medium mouthfeel with low carbonation. I think I would prefer it be a touch thicker.

Fantastic. This is perhaps the best of the 2011 bottlings.

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Photo of claspada
3.9/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a jet black color with a small tan head but still leaves some super lacing as your swirl the beer around.

Aromas of sweet bourbon, oak, roasted malts and dark chocolate. As it warms you get some toffee, bitter espresso and light caramel maltiness. A much more dry, bitter dark chocolate aroma than the other Eclipse series that I have sampled.

The tastes follow the nose and begin with sweet bourbon, oak, roasted malts and dark chocolate. The roasty/smoky elements continue to build as it warms into a full Bourbon character by leaving some rough boozy edges.

The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with low carbonation. Finish is dry and biting due to the emerging Bourbon presence.

Overall this is my least favorite of the 5 variations I have sampled to date. Too smoky and acridly bitter with too much emerging straight bourbon flavor overpowering the base beer elements.

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Photo of iadler
3.95/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From notes. Open during a recent tasting. 2011 bottle. Forgot to write bottle number.

A- Pours a pitch black with a small mocha head that dissipates quickly and leaves minimal lacing.

S- Bourbon upfront followed by oak, vanilla, plumb, fig, dark chocolate, roasted malt, burnt caramel and a hint of coffee.

T- Again lots of bourbon with oak, subtle vanilla bean, dark chocolate, roasted malt and burnt caramel.

M- Medium carbonation with a thin body, especially for a stout. Has some heat the finish. Could use a bit more body.

O- After having several Eclipses, I'm ready to say that I'm not willing to throw another $30 for any of the variations. Not a bad beer, but nothing really memorable and a middle of the road BA stout IMO.

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Photo of yamar68
4.72/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to corregidore for this one, along with an 18 year! Been hunting for this one for a while. 2011 vintage, #3,307, poured from bottle to brandy snifter:

Pours a near pitch black... maintaining a slight bit of dark copper clarity. A thin half-finger of light brown head fades out to a neat collar. Great, oily lacing. Nice looking beer.

Tons of lush honeycomb and caramel cake on the nose... super refined, just a suggestion of booze comes with a big snort. Rich bourbon without the heat.

Holy hell... fantastic. It's nice that this is 9.5% because it allows for a smooth bourbon character that isn't accompanied by too much alcohol which sometimes can trick your mind into tasting heat from the bourbon itself. Honey and caramel play key roles. Exceptionally drinkable for a BA imperial stout.

One of the most unique and delicious beers I've ever had.

ISO.

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Photo of eric5bellies
4.47/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Drank from my Duvel Tulip glass. Bottle 2977.

Big thanks to Nicks6217 for this one.

A - Pours darks as night with no transparency. The head is one fingered and tanned. It reduces to a decent lacing film.

S - Big aromas of bourbon drenched oak, some chocolate and a tiny bit of booze.

T - Big flavours of toffee, caramel and Bourbon. The finish is long and quite a boozy expresso / vanilla flavour. A nice warming finish.

M - Big full mouthfeel with minimal carbonation. Very smooth

O - This is one of my favourite stouts of all time. It is very well rounded and has plenty of diverse flavour. The smoothness is A+

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Photo of Knapp85
4.35/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured out as a nice looking semi-thick black beer. The head on top was a dark shade of tan with some lacing on the glass. The smell of the beer was full of roasted malts, chocolate notes, bourbon and wooden aromas. The taste of this beer was very good, the flavors of some chocolate and vanilla with the warmth of the bourbon. The sweetness of the honey and the roasted malts balance out nicely along with the bitterness in the finish. The mouthfeel is on the thicker side but still not as heavy as some imperial stouts. There is a subtle creaminess to the beer also which is really nice. The carbonation is low but has just enough to liven up the brew. Overall it's a killer beer, I've enjoyed each one that I've had from this series... Wishing I could afford more but I'm happy with the three types I picked up.

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Photo of SkiBum22
4.55/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2011 Vintage
Bottle # 3397

A - Pours a slightly bubbly tan/khaki colored head that retreats into the blackness of the body.

S - Lots of bourbon. Oak. Some chocolate. Cherries and other dark fruit as it warms up. Alcohol is noticeable, but not overpowering.

T - Flavor is phenomenal and extremely well balanced. Deep, robust and not overly rich. Nice chocolate notes. Mild bourbon and vanilla.

M - Mouth is just under full bodied. Silky with light creamy carbonation. Spot on for how I like in Barrel Aged Stouts.

O - Amazing brew. Can't tell if I like this or the 18 year more. The only knock I have is that I wish the ABV was a little higher but other then that this is an almost flawless Barrel Aged Stout.

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Photo of Reagan1984
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Specual thanks to Ultraman9000 for providing this one in trade.

Bottle 559 from 2011

The tan head sits like a coffee milkshake. Deep shiny dark brown, not quite black. A surprising amount of frothy thick lace.

Aroma is thick, sweet chocolate, coconut with a smidge of alcohol/bourbon.

More bourbon in the flavor and some more coconut. A lovely chocolate dark malt flavor. The aftertaste is almost the highlight here. Stays with you and is wonderful. The more I play with this glass, the more I enjoy the bourbon flavors here.

Fairly bold body and quite slick. Slippery and oily, but nice. Rounded edges.

Very good beer.

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Photo of thagr81us
4.12/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one was a part of cmrillo’s 40 Beers* @ 40 Birthday Bash! Shared by cmrillo at his own party! Served from bottle into a Mikkeller taster flute. Poured a dark reddish brown with a half finger khaki colored head that subsided to a minimal amount quickly. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, roasted malt, dark chocolate, wood, sweet alcohol, and vanilla. The flavor was of sweet malt, dark chocolate, wood, vanilla, caramel, and sweet alcohol. It had a heavy feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a pretty good brew. After having the 18 year old version right before this one it was quite easy to pick out the differences. This one had a caramel note hinting around in it which was nice but not awesome. It did have quite an excellent smell going on with it that was rather inviting. Whether you are trying the 12 or the 18, you really can’t go wrong.

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Photo of Treebs
4.25/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. purple waxed bottle served in a Firestone Walker tulip. 2011 vintage, bottle # 2286.

A: Pours black color with dark brown edges. A one finger height of light tan foam forms on the pour and recedes quickly to a thin collar. It's a little bubbly and leaves some spotty lace down the glass.

S: Bourbon and oak with honey sweetness. There is nice mild chocolate, some roasted malts and a little caramel on the finish.

T: Sweet bourbon. It's very smooth and is integrated nicely with the base beer. Mild oak with a nice caramel and dark chocolate flavor profile. The finish is slightly warming.

M: Medium bodied with a medium carbonation. Smooth and rich mouthfeel.

O: The best of the 2011 variants (that I've had so far). The barrel was nicely integrated and melded well with the base beer.

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Photo of FeDUBBELFIST
4.35/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber to mini tulip
2011 Vintage, Elijah Craig 12 year barrel, purple wax
Bottle #3147
Sampled 04JUL12
$30 for the single

[A] One half finger of medium dark brown head, bubbly-foamy, with below average retention. A thick bubbly collar remains for quite a while, with a thin whispy cloud of film grazing the surface. The body is a shade lighter than pitch black with transparency only along the edges when the glass is tilted. Gnarled branches of lace cling to the glass and hold on better than expected.

[S] Earthy yet sweet and spicy bourbon upfront. The honey component is prevalent throughout. A deep layer of caramel mixes with a dusting of cocoa. Buttery French toast. Light alcohol. Mild char, earthy and soily.

[T] Incredibly smooth bourbon and barrel up front. Honey and dark caramelized sugars follow suit. Deftly sweet notes linger long into the finish. Alcohol is extremely well concealed. The sweetness is not overwhelming – but possibly overdone a bit. Additional bitterness and/or roast would have worked well on the palate.

[M] Semi thick and creamy at first with fine, persistently tingling carbonation from mid-palate on. Very sticky throughout. The flavor and aroma are my favorite aspects of the brew.

[O] Of the Eclipses I’ve had thus far, the bourbon character in the Elijah Craig 12 Year seems to be the most refined and well integrated. But the sweetness is a little high, so the long term drinkability is limited for me.

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Photo of mulder1010
4.15/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2011 vintage poured into a CBS Snifter
#2925
Did it really need more wax??

A-- Pours a dark cola color and settled a dark reddish black color. All sorts of ruby hues with this. Nearly clear when shown to the light. Half finger of light brown head that quickly fades to a thick film that eventually breaks up into a splotchy film. Lots of carbonation bubbles in the head. Nice spotty lacing on the sides of the glass.

S-- Dark milk chocolate, honey, coconut, toasted marshmallow, and slight oak. Once opened up it shows signs of bourbon and alcohol, yet it mellows again to the original nose. Well balanced and not as sweet as the other variations have been.

T-- A little bourbon forward. Bourbon at first, followed by milk chocolate, carmel, honey, and toasted coconut. Flashes of alcohol but quite restrained. rather smooth really.

M-- Slick and oily. Alcohol is more obvious in the mouth as there is more heat in the mid and back of the palate. Bit of a milk chocolate, honeycomb, and marshmallow finish to this. There are thin parts to this but the barrel notes do a good job in covering it well.

O-- Brandy or bourbon? Something that needs to be sipped and savored. Enough notes of the base beer and enough of the barrel to make this really nice. Well done in the balance and in the softer touches of the barrel notes. Not something that hits you over the head with a hammer.

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Photo of DarthKostrizer
4.92/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This review is of the 09' vintage as i did a side by side of this one and the 11' this past weekend

Look: Very dark brown almost black in color with a 1/4 inch tan head and ok retention and when you drink it down it leaves a film on the side of the glass

Smell: The nose is loaded with copious amounts of chocolate, oak, marshmallow, coconut, and bourbon

Taste: The flavor is just as good if not better than the nose. It starts out with a wonder chocolate and coconut flavor and the coconut is just wonderful. The beer then finishes with a nice amount of oak and elijah bourbon. The alcohol is incredibly well hidden where as the 11' the alcohol still shows its face

Mouthfeel: Medium body and mild carbonation with absolutely no alcohol burn which the 11' still had

Overall: The 09' is drinking incredible well at this point and I honestly don't see it getting any better where I believe the 11 could use some time in the bottle but is still great in its own right

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Photo of FosterJM
4.8/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

1361st Review on BA
Bottle to CBS Snifter
22oz

2011 Purple Wax

App- So I am really suprised at the black richness of this compared to the 18 year. Much more inky black with a better two finer head with a great line of cling and a swirl on the top.

Smell- This is a great smelling stout. Its a bit of a bourbon, creme, vanilla, chocolate mousse type of thing. No burn at all on the nostrils and just can sit and smell for days. The booze is there on a large pull but its completely hidden within the confines of a small smell.

Taste- I can understand why this one is the best of the bunch. Has a ton of flavor behind it without being cloying or abrasive. The booze is super hidden and the bourbon adds just layers of super creamy flavors. Its a bit oaky and vanilla and a bit of a whip creme like note. Just a wonderful stout. To me its almost a baby BT. Just cut in 1/2.

Mouth- A full medium body with a low medium carbonation. Super creamy with a lush feel to it. Just a smidge too thin. I am just being nitpicky I think. Amazing residual creme, vanilla and oaky booze.

Drink- There is no doubt in my mind why this is so highly rated. I know why I wasnt a fan of the 18. This kicked its ass and now I am kicking my ass for not drinking this sooner and ordering more of it...DAMN!!

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Photo of 4thelvofbeer
4.7/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Awesome. Period. This was my first of the many eclipses, the EC12 was smooth and absolutely delicious!
A:Black, nice thin brown head.
S/T: Notes of smooth bourbon, honey, vanilla, molasses, and chocolate!
M: Really smooth, silky and nice...
O: I love this stout...really tasty!

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Photo of DocJitsu
4.5/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very dark brown with a fat, foamy, long-lasting, light mocha head. Head retention is about average. Wood, coconut, and chocolate syrup were noted in the aromas. Heavy viscous, creamy mouthfeel that becomes a little astringent at the finish. Chocolate syrup forward with some coconut and ample bourbon. A very, very good imperial stout. Much better than the Vanilla Bean Dark Lord that I'd had moments earlier.

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Photo of mdaschaf
4.47/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review from notes. Big thanks to Morgan for hooking me up with this one! Consumed side by side with EC 18.

A: Pours a thick black with a small tan head on top. Decent retention and minimal lacing.

S: Wow, a good amount of bourbon going on mixed with some chocolate and a hint of vanilla. The chocolate has both cocoa notes and milk chocolate. There is a little bit of dark fruit, light roast, and oak as well.

T: A nice follow up from the aroma with a nice combination of chocolate, bourbon, and vanilla. There is a little bit more roasty malt and some caramel. The dark fruit on the aroma didn't really show up.

M: Medium to full bodied, very creamy and smooth. Very easy drinking.

O: Very impressed. Liked this beer a lot, so easy to drink with a lot of flavor. While hard to differentiate with the 18 year, I did like this one a bit more, but would have no problem drinking either one again.

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Photo of ColForbinBC
4.64/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap served in a tulip

Pours an ink black with some tan bubbles around the rim of the glass, no discernable lacing. This is a viscous beer; coats the inside of the glass with a thin oily film when swirled.

On the nose, holy shit. Loads of whiskey and booze. Molasess, butterscotch, raisins, Belgian dark chocolate, oak...extremely rich and robust. Blows the nostrils away.

Molasess, butterscotch, bourbon, dark chocolate, raisins, dry oak, rolled oats, figs....just straight up bourbon barrel goodness. Huge, robust notes with a relentless finish.

Full-bodied, smooth, lush, creamy. Low carbonation, large amounts of ethanol. This guy is big and bad.

Huge, robust stout with heavy bourbon influence. Utterly delicious.

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Imperial Eclipse Stout - Elijah Craig (12 Year) from FiftyFifty Brewing Co.
98 out of 100 based on 273 ratings.