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Imperial Eclipse Stout - Heaven Hill Rittenhouse Rye - FiftyFifty Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Imperial Eclipse Stout - Heaven Hill Rittenhouse RyeImperial Eclipse Stout - Heaven Hill Rittenhouse Rye

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

439 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 439
Reviews: 156
rAvg: 4.27
pDev: 9.6%
Wants: 262
Gots: 212 | FT: 15
Brewed by:
FiftyFifty Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

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 175 days in Rittenhouse Rye Whiskey barrels. The 2012 version contains a small amount of beer aged in Heaven Hill Pikesville Supreme Rye Whiskey barrels.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 439 | Reviews: 156 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Sammy
3.94/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Certainly the best tasting, smoothest of the half dozen I have had to date in this series. Black, lacey. Coffee but also nicely undercarbonated. Very good drinkability. Bottlefrom Premier split with Liam.A moderate roast characteristic. Well integrated whiskey.

Photo of t0rin0
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of spycow
5/5  rDev +17.1%

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.39/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle purchased at Blue Palms Brewhouse in Los Angeles, CA as part of the FiftyFifty Eclipse Release Party.

2011 vintage. Bottle # 679.

Pours an opaque black with a 1/2 inch foamy khaki head that fades to a film on the top of the beer. Small streaks of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, vanilla, wood, and a nice rye whisky aroma. Taste is pretty much the same. I really enjoy the Rittenhouse Rye treatment on this one. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good barrel aged stout with a nice rye whisky flavor. One of the best of the night.

Photo of djrn2
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of zestar
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of acurtis
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of Thorpe429
4.47/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a deep back with a nice tan head into a Bruery tulip. A bit of lacing as it goes down.

S: The bourbon is definitely present. Nice and creamy, although not quite as heavy as the Elijah Craig, which we had this side-by-side with. Along with the alcohol is a bit of roasted malt and vanilla. Some hints of chocolate.

T: Similar to the nose, although the bourbon comes out more, playing with the malt and creating a nice creaminess, which really drives the mouthfeel.

M: Fairly full bodied and nice and creamy. No much alcohol; quite smooth.

D: Heavily drinkable. So glad they're releasing this again and that I have my futures certificates in hand.

Photo of GRG1313
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%

Photo of brentk56
4.19/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle 1915 of 2009

Appearance: Pours a fudge brown color with a very modest head (not surprising given the style and the age) ; very leggy and plenty of lacing, however

Smell: Roast, chocolate, licorice, oak and rye

Taste: Roast and licorice, up front, with developing dark chocolate notes; by mid-palate, the rye and oak flavors kick in, bringing a bit of booze; the warming notes continue to build, after the swallow, so the finish was redolent of rye

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with low to moderate carbonation; some warmth in the gullet

Overall: I have been aging a number of FIftyFifty stouts for a few years, this one being the oldest, and plan to consume them over the next week; this, being the first (and the only one from 2009), sets a fairly high bar but I suspect it may get topped by one or more of the others

Photo of ygtbsm94
3.25/5  rDev -23.9%

Photo of BEERchitect
4.47/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Espresso. Chocolate. Molasses. Whisky spice. Lavish creamy texture. ...yes, please!

Pushing against stillness, the oily black elixir still only amounts a dainty espresso-like creme with even the most assertive swirl of the glass. Its oil slick appearance is onyx-like with low-lying retention and lace; preferring brandy legging tendencies instead. It simply prefers to look like an abyss. ...and it seductively pulls me in.

Utmost savory aromas rise from the glass as the nose is haplessly captivated by its espresso roast, dark chocolate and spicy whisky scents. Supporting burnt caramel, molasses, vanilla, whipping cream and booze-soaked oak offers lushness and roundness as well as balance to the nose. A tinge of burnt currant, cherry, walnut and fennel all play a role in the beer's developing aroma.

Surprisingly just as savory and seductive to taste, a deep fudge-like chocolaty, creamy denseness greets the early palate. Its bittersweet taste invites vinous wood notes of savory soy sauce to go along with its brownie batter, chocolate covered espresso bean, and freshly roasted walnut character. A welcome reprieve comes from the spicy huskiness of burnt rye, pumpernickel croutons, and a peppery booze taste to slice through the dense chocolate tone. Charred woods with black-strap molasses, gently rolling whipping cream and vanilla round out its oaky finish.

Its dense and lavish texture wraps around the tongue like silk. Its well-woven alcohols allows its sweetness to seep into the mouth's soft tissues with ease. This allows for an intensification in taste and mouthfeel that latches on and won't let go. Its slow development warms the throat and only relaxes a bit as the alcohols assist in drying the palate and the pleasant powdery texture from oak and grain spice to offer a mild lift. But its low carbonation does little to pull the beer from the tongue in order to allow for full saturation of the taste buds with that simmering and sultry warmth.

Its immense residual sweetness requires high roast, high level of complexity, and help from outsourced barrel and whisky complements in order to balance its gargantuan malt display. But carefully sculpted, this beer resonates beautifully on the mouth, stomach and soul.

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.96/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color ale with a large brown foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of rich black chocolates notes with light residual sugar notes and some rye whiskey notes with some bitter roasted malt. Taste is a mix between some bitter roasted malt with some rich black chocolate notes and some rye whiskey notes with a somewhat harsh finish. Body is full with nice creamy and oily texture with good carbonation and not much apparent alcohol notes. Very enjoyable but still a bit harsher than some of the other varieties.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.27/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Black as night it sludged into the glass and popped up a sticky brown head of nearly two inches before settling down but retaining a wonderful balance of about a half an inch. Lacing coats the whole glass wonderfully. Lots of bourbon in the aroma, hot with vanilla and wood streaming through the air and dominating an otherwise chocolate and roasted masterpiece. Each sip tastes like you are coming straight off the barrel. Wonderful notes of vanilla and butterscotch, warm chocolate and light smoke all come together. Lots of heat, this definitely will benefit from a year or two but such a smooth, creamy finish it was literally as smooth as one could imagine given the strength.

Photo of SocalKicks
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%

Photo of womencantsail
4.48/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to Dave for sharing this one at Sour Fest.

A: The pour is like all of the Imperial Eclipse iterations: thick and black as night with a finger's worth of tan head.

S: The whiskey notes are noticeable right away. Good kick of barrel, vanilla, rye, coconut?, chocolate, and a bit of sugar. Not quite as smooth as the PVW or the EC, but still very nice.

T: The few missteps of the nose are atoned for in the flavor. Great chocolate, roast, and slight dark fruit and coffee flavors from the beer itself. The barrel really lends quite a bit of complexity, including vanilla, some oak, and whiskey flavor.

M: The body is velvety and smooth on the tongue, and the carbonation is quite restrained.

D: These beers are all fantastic, and the fact that I'm giving such a high score to my "least favorite" of the bunch is telling. I wish I had more than one of each.

Photo of largadeer
4.7/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Bring for hooking me up with this one.

Pours a translucent dark brown, and in the glass it's an opaque dark chocolate color. A small leather-colored head rises to a finger's height and just as quickly settles to a ring.

The aroma is an intoxicating mix of chocolate caramel candy, boozy rye whiskey and vanilla. There's a subtle fruitiness in the background, honey and light roastiness. This smells outstanding.

The taste, surprisingly, is even better than the aroma. It opens with a medley of milk chocolate, honey, vanilla and caramel, which segues into a mid-palate of burnt toast, spicy rye whiskey and plenty of boozy heat. The body is medium-full, right about where I like it for the style; it's neither thin nor syrupy. A bittersweet dark chocolate finish beautifully contrasts the initial chocolate-caramel blast, leaving a hint of charred malt, licorice and alcohol on the palate. It's rare that I'm impressed with big stouts these days, but I have to admit that this is an exceptionally well made beer.

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.37/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

one of my favorite series of beers right here, always a special treat to crack into one, especially one I've never had, and even better one with a little age on it. this 2012 edition is one of my favorites of the lot so far, its just amazing. pours nice and dark, inky and shiny, radiant black. not as much head as i remember on others, but its not still either. the nose is really rye heavy, and i pick up a on of coffee too. a cool combination. the flavor shows a lot more vanilla and oak than the nose, and the rye is up front rather than in the finish. texturally interesting, and spicy at first sip. the finish is loaded with huge roasted coffee notes and the familiar honey sweetness present in all of these. rich and roasty, almost burnt malt, maybe char from the barrel or something, its really heavy in the finish. i like the rye influence on this. maybe not quite as much as the most recent high west rye edition, but its close, and may have receded in time a little bit. so mellow and well integrated though, i love it. thanks to claystation for dropping some half-birthday cash on this one and a few others for us to share. worth the price they as for these, and i rarely think that with beer so pricey.

Photo of biboergosum
3.89/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

22oz, 'Forest Green®' waxed bottle, 2014 BR 1 vintage, some straight-ahead American rye whiskey barrel treatment here, it would seem.

This beer pours, as expected, a solid black abyss, with the faintest of basal cola edges, and three fingers of weakly foamy, and generally just over the top bubbly brown head, which leaves some stellar Mercator projection sudsy lace around the glass as it slowly sinks away.

It smells of gritty, grainy caramel malt, bittersweet cocoa powder, relatively understated rye whiskey barrel astringencies - vanilla and spicy grain alcohol, mostly - roasted coffee beans, a hint of cheap black licorice, and plain earthy, weedy hops. The taste is sugary caramel/toffee malt, milky coffee, licorice candy drops, muddled chocolate syrup, and a rather lessened barrel character - prominent, as such, vanillan, spicy rye grain, and subtle woody notes - with a surprisingly more red wine, Madeira-esque booziness presiding overall, and those pesky earthy, weedy hops still striving for attention amongst the furor.

The carbonation is quite light and unobtrusive in its plainly underwhelming frothiness, the body kind of on the low side of medium weight (yeah, those barrels be trippin', yo!), and generally smooth, a certain unassailed (say whut?) creaminess trumping as things warm a tad. It finishes on the sweet side, the admittedly tempered cocoa, caramel, and wood grain-borne and boozy vanilla ruling the roost.

A tasty enough big-ass Imperial Stout, the exact Bourbon County goodness better left to more appreciable American whiskey connoisseurs than I. All this wag can say is that the whiskey component is quite restrained, manifesting just enough to stake a claim, but one that you kind of have to get really close to in order to know what the fuck they are saying, if y'all know what I mean.

Photo of zeff80
4.32/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out an opaque, jet black color with a small, light brown head of thick foam. It left some sudsy trails of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of oak, rye and some spicy notes. Good roasty aromas.

T - It tasted roasted malt, dark chocolate, toffee and sweet rye. Good spiciness with some oak and vanilla.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A full bodied ale with a warm alcohol presence.

O - This was fantastic. My second Eclipse and it was outstanding.

Photo of JAHMUR
4.5/5  rDev +5.4%

Photo of oline73
4.3/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this during the bottle share during the Jackie O's bottle release. Poured into a sample glass.

Appearance: Pours almost black with some red at the edges. There is a mild tan head that goes away completely.

Smell: Sweet roast with some dark fruit and spicy bourbon. I'm also picking up a nice cocoa note.

Taste: This is a very smooth ba stout. Just a bit hot, but that's fine by me. Roast and chocolate. I swear I could taste a hint of maple as well. Dark fruit notes with a bitter roasty finish.

Mouthfeel: The body is on the thick side of medium with mild carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: This is an extremely well done beer. The chocolate notes kicked it up a notch. Very good.

Photo of mendvicdog
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of XmnwildX12
4/5  rDev -6.3%

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Imperial Eclipse Stout - Heaven Hill Rittenhouse Rye from FiftyFifty Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 439 ratings.