Imperial Eclipse Stout - Four Roses Bourbon - FiftyFifty Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 395 | Reviews: 132 | Display Reviews Only:
3.98/5 rDev -6.6%
On tap at Blue Palms Brewhouse in Los Angeles, CA as part of the FiftyFifty Eclipse Release Party.
Pours an opaque black with a 1/2 inch foamy khaki head that fades to nothing. Very small dots of lace form on the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, vanilla, wood, and a very mellow bourbon aroma. Taste is pretty much the same. The bourbon is somewhat astringent flavor wise. This beer has a roasty bitterness and has a very high alcohol warmth in the back of the throat. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good barrel aged stout but definitely my least favorite of the night. The bourbon flavors from the Four Roses was a bit too harsh in my opinion.
12-18-2011 04:55:30 | More by UCLABrewN84
4.08/5 rDev -4.2%
Opened a bottle of this at the post-Christmas tasting in Chicago. Served in a Cantillon tulip.
Pours brings forward a black as night brew without much of a head or any sort of cap and collar after the pour. A few bubbles here and there, though not too much else. The nose brings forward quite a bit of bourbon, though this is nearly overpowered by the roasted character of the beer. Some nice chocolate notes abound.
The taste didn't quite get me like the nose did. The bourbon presence is quite nice, but at the same time the roasted character of the malt bill is a little too much--I'd prefer more of a chocolate base. However, still quite good and I won't complain too much. The feel is nice and viscous with the appropriate amount of booze. Drinkability is quite high, though as I'm sure one could tell, I could have done without some of the extra roast character.
01-05-2011 17:35:25 | More by Thorpe429
4.48/5 rDev +5.2%
Bottle 741 of 2010
Appearance: Pours fudge brown with a spumous head; excellent lacing
Smell: Roast, chocolate, oak, vanilla, dark fruit and, of course, the Four Roses Bourbon
Taste: From the outset, the thing that stands out is the balance; opens with all the flavors detected in the aroma; after the swallow, there is a modest amount of heat, but the finish brings back the start, with the sweetness held in check by the roast and chocolate while the dark fruit adds complexity
Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation and some warmth in the gullet
Overall: Very pleased with how this brew has matured; I wasn't expecting to like it as much as I did but it topped the Heaven Hill I had yesterday - three more to go
05-03-2014 18:16:03 | More by brentk56
3.76/5 rDev -11.7%
Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a large brown foamy head with good retention and some light lacing. Aroma of rye whiskey notes with some woody notes and some burnt barley notes. Taste is a mix of wye whiskey notes with some burnt barley notes with some black chocolate notes with a finish that is a little bit harsh. Body is full with nice oily and creamy notes with good carbonation and light warming alcohol. Good but doesn’t really stands out against the other BA varieties of Eclipse.
02-14-2014 19:54:23 | More by Phyl21ca
4.58/5 rDev +7.5%
essentially black as an abyss with no light coming through on Two fingers worth of brown, frothy head then gradually formed and pushed just out over the lip of my snifter.
warm vanilla notes waft through the air and perk up my senses. I find that rich aroma comforting and soothing and a sign that it stayed in the barrel just the right amount of time. Going in closer and letting it reach its zenith at room temperature reveals a complex mixture of chocolate, hints of tobacco and leather, even the finest touches of coffee all coming together and creating a symphony of aroma.
Vanilla and bourbon notes hit first. Smooth and silky feel here, really very nicely done. It melts seamlessly and effortlessly into a spinning cauldron of coffee and chocolate that just reeks of woody tones and vanilla underpinnings. Warming really starts to bring this out now. finish belongs to the barrel as the sweet, balanced flavor leaves its mark and fades off into the night.
06-19-2011 05:23:42 | More by mikesgroove
4.38/5 rDev +2.8%
Bottle courtesy of the always epic largadeer. Thanks, brosef.
A: The pour is viscous and black with a finger of khaki head on it.
S: The roast and char from the barrel come through strong on the initial sniff. Lots of bourbon and vanilla notes follow along with dark roasted coffee and a nice dark chocolate/cocoa powder aroma. There is just a hint of smoke in the background.
T: A rather strong roast up front on the palate as well. Plenty of bourbon and oak notes and a sweet vanilla flavor to round it out. Mild sweetness of molasses and dark chocolate to go with the roast and coffee notes.
M: Medium to full in body with a smooth, creamy carbonation.
O: Although almost all of the variations on this beer are solid, this one is certainly up near the top. Very nice stuff.
07-25-2011 21:22:42 | More by womencantsail
4.55/5 rDev +6.8%
2010 vintage, bomber into a tulip.
Black with translucent brown edges. The dark tan head shows good longevity.
Unabashed bourbon on the nose. Brownie, cookie dough, caramel candy, subdued booze and vanilla. The bourbon barrel seems more dominant here compared to the Evan Williams version.
The palate also has a huge bourbon kick. Layers of bittersweet chocolate, black licorice and burnt sugar coat the tongue. Alcohol is more noticeable on the palate than the nose, but it's by no means a harsh beer. The finish is roasted and sharp; licorice, espresso and alcohol linger. There's a slight vinous red wine note as I dig deeper, like a big juicy merlot.
This strikes me as more intense than the Evan Williams bourbon barrel Eclipse. It's delicious, but I find myself preferring the balance of the EW edition.
12-06-2010 05:09:16 | More by largadeer
4.11/5 rDev -3.5%
22oz red wax ensconced bottle, 2013 version, and now 11.9% ABV. Can't say that I've ever tried the titular Bourbon - I'll save that for a future date.
This beer pours a solid light-sucking black hole, with the slightest of basal cola 'highlights', and a teeming tower of puffy, thickly foamy, and duly rocky light brown head, which leaves a pleasant web of sudsy lace around the glass as it slowly wilts away.
It smells of grainy milk chocolate, woody alcohol, vanilla, and caramel Bourbon barrel notes, field honey, molasses-heavy malt, besotted dark bread, a touch of cold coffee, and weak earthy, weedy hops. The taste is bittersweet cocoa, sugary Bourbon essences - watery vanilla, a more sturdy toffee and caramel, and an ethereal rye grain spiciness - lightly roasted pale, chocolate, and caramel malt, herbal honey, a hint of earthy hops, and a middling booze warmth.
The bubbles are pretty low-key overall, the body actually a bit on the light side of medium weight for this sort of offering, and equitably smooth at the same time. It finishes sweet, in the, 'gee someone poured a shot of top-shelf Yankee whiskey into my already heady Imperial Stout' kind of way, so thanks, Drunk Uncle, or whoever had the wherewithal to engender such an act.
One of the more approachable versions of this onslaught of Bourbon County aged stouts from this particular California mountain brewery that have suddenly made their way up north to we, um, northerners. Tasty, and still more than a wee bit challenging to the average palate, I would venture to presume, though I did quite enjoy the dual upsides of lush chocolate and a subtle alcohol perception a little too much, especially given the near 12 points of hooch.
01-09-2014 06:17:56 | More by biboergosum
4.28/5 rDev +0.5%
Bottle picked up for me from the brewery by nerd - thanks dude! Served in a Three Floyds pint glass.
A - A finger of dark tan foam settles to a thin cap and some spotty lace. Dark brown near-black body that reveals a bit more lightness at the fringes.
S - Dark chocolate, smoke, oak, bourbon, dark fruits. It's got that typical Eclipse maple and caramel sweetness, particularly when it warms up. No obvious alcohol.
T - Heavy in oak, with notes of dark chocolate, dark fruits, and some bourbon flavor as well. Minimal roast, but perhaps a bit of espresso bitterness, as well as oak, in the finish.
M - A little thin, a common complaint I have about some Eclipse variants, although not totally out of line for the lower ABV. Medium-low carbonation, and no obvious alcohol. Finishes tannic and fairly dry.
D - Not my favorite variant, but eminently drinkable. Everyone enjoyed this and wished we had more of it to pass around (or less people sharing it). I'm looking forward to my 2011 bottles. A very good barrel-aged stout.
06-23-2011 15:42:37 | More by MasterSki
4.33/5 rDev +1.6%
Bottle served in a Eclipse snifter, hell yes. Beer is black, dark, with a thin brown head of small bubbles, some lacing, decent retnetion.
Aroma is boozy, strong vanilla and tannic components, rounds nicely. I really like it.
Beer is medium in body, creamy, this is the 2011 version which is much better, smoother better integrated than the 2010, a phenomenal beer right here. Nice finish, no heat, strong bourbon barrel character, very nice. I'd have this again.
07-20-2012 19:47:20 | More by drabmuh
4.49/5 rDev +5.4%
as expensive as these are, I may unfortunately never get to try them all, so they are a rare treat indeed. this is my third thus far, and easily my favorite. 2011 vintage here, so maybe the age helped it mellow a bit. the pour is dark and thick like the rest of them coffee colored with a sturdy off white head with lots of airy bubbles. the nose indicates a very balanced brew, not overly bourbon heavy, but the oak, charcoal, and vanilla is there, which go expertly with the level of roast on the barley, which is intense but not burnt bitter yet. the honey comes through in the flavor better in this one than either of the others ive had, its sweet and summery, and actually lightens up an otherwise heavy beer. the sweetness of the bourbon also tempers the heft of the malts. very deep and layered flavors here, with the barrel not overtaking things, as is so commonly done (and indeed strived for) these days. I like this whole series for introducing the nuances of different barrel treatments to the same base beer. its an expensive learning tool, but a damn enjoyable one. ive never consumed four roses bourbon, but this beer has me primed to seek out a bottle. if you can buck up for this, and then be patient enough to wait a year, you will be handsomely rewarded!
05-07-2013 18:38:15 | More by StonedTrippin
3.68/5 rDev -13.6%
Poured from the bottle into a goblet.
Appearance: Pours an almost opaque dark brown with a layer of off white head that fades to a ring around the edge of the glass.
Smell: Smooth roasted malt with some chocolate, peppery oak, and bourbon alcohol warmth in the finish.
Taste: Sweet, roasted malt with a nice undertone from the bourbon. The woody note is slightly peppery, just like the smell. Not quite full enough to be outstanding.
Mouthfeel: The body is medium, which seems a bit thin for this beer. Rather large bubbles with a dry finish.
Overall: This beer was a bit thin but it was still quite good. Not my favorite variation, but I would still have another.
03-23-2012 00:54:20 | More by oline73
4.5/5 rDev +5.6%
From 02/20/11 notes. Brought this to try side by side with the 2010 vintage of the Evan Williams Eclipse. 2010 vintage, bottle 639
a - Pours a jet black color with one inch of thick tan head and light carbonation evident. Looks exactly the same as the EW version.
s - Smells of bourbon, oak, roasted malts, chocolate, figs, dark fruits, sweet fruit, and caramel malts. I thought the Four Roses version smelled a lot sweeter than the EW version, which I personally preferred.
t - Tastes of bourbon, oak, roasted malts, chocolate, vanilla, coffee, and dark fruit.
m - Medium to full body and low carbonation, thick and smooth. very nice.
d - Overall I thought this was another great stout. Very close to the Evan Willaism version in look and feel. I preferred the smell of the Four Roses to that of EW, but the taste of EW to that of the Four Roses. Either way, both stouts were outstanding and I'd love to get more of them.
02-21-2011 17:16:11 | More by mdfb79
Imperial Eclipse Stout - Four Roses Bourbon from FiftyFifty Brewing Co.
95 out of 100 based on 395 ratings.