1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Imperial Eclipse Stout - Elijah Craig (20 Year) - FiftyFifty Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Imperial Eclipse Stout - Elijah Craig (20 Year)Imperial Eclipse Stout - Elijah Craig (20 Year)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
99
world-class

548 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 548
Reviews: 153
rAvg: 4.47
pDev: 8.28%
Wants: 317
Gots: 273 | FT: 11
Brewed by:
FiftyFifty Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

White wax.

(Beer added by: MasterSki on 11-22-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 548 | Reviews: 153 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79

New York

4.85/5  rDev +8.5%

From 03/09/12 notes. Huge thanks to Thorep429 for sharing this one; bit Want of mine. 2011 vintage, bottle 3737.

a - Pours a dark brown, almost blac color, with one inch of light tan head and low carbonation evident.

s - Smells of whiskey, vanilla, oak, sweet chocolate, roasted malts, dark chocolate, and some caramel malts. Smell is really great; an awesome blend of bourbon, chocolate, and vanilla. Bourbon is a little bit strong, but I love bourbon forward stouts so I love it.

t - Tastes of sweet chocolate vanilla, cream,
marshmallows, roasted malts, bourbon, oak, cocoa, light coconut, and caramel malts. The taste is amazing, pretty perfect in my opinion. More chocolate then the nose and less bourbon, it is just a great blend of sweet chocolate, vanilla, and bourbon.

m - Medium to full body and low carbonation, the body is insanely smooth and creamy. Really a perfect mouthfeel.

o - Overall I thought this was a fantastic stout; one of the best I've had in a while. I had the 2011 Brandy version 3 nights ago and this blew it away; it's the best Eclipse variation I've had so far (including PVW). The smell was great and the taste and mouthfeel were perfect; exactly what I'm looking for in a stout. Really wish I had made an effort to get some bottles of this, time to go searching for some.

03-10-2012 16:21:09 | More by mdfb79
Photo of mendvicdog
mendvicdog

Maryland

4/5  rDev -10.5%

03-10-2013 16:56:26 | More by mendvicdog
Photo of Rochefort10nh
Rochefort10nh

New Hampshire

4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

01-02-2012 01:02:34 | More by Rochefort10nh
Photo of Halcyondays
Halcyondays

California

4.3/5  rDev -3.8%

On-tap at Beachwood II,

A: Pours black with a medium tan head. Solid head retention, spotty lace, not as good looking a beer as the 12 year old.

S: Very spiritous, direct bourbon and ethanol notes, not the huge vanilla bomb of the 12. Refined.

T: Good dark chocolate flavour with spiritous bourbon. The ethanol mixes well with the other flavours and never goes overboard. A restrained yet powerful effort.

M: Full-bodied, spiritous I keep saying. Mellow, a sipper, an after dinner drink for sure.

O: The best Eclipse I've had so far. Well made and contemplative.

12-19-2011 03:45:18 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of beernads
beernads

Florida

4/5  rDev -10.5%

07-02-2013 07:30:14 | More by beernads
Photo of imperialking
imperialking

Illinois

4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

02-06-2012 16:59:05 | More by imperialking
Photo of corby112
corby112

Pennsylvania

4.1/5  rDev -8.3%

2011 vintage, bottle 4138

Pours a dark chestnut brown color that appears pitch black and completely opaque in the glass with a one finger beige head that quickly settles into a thin, lasting ring. Spotty lacing left behind.

Complex aroma with a prominent barrel presence that compliments the base beer without completely obliterating it's characteristics. Lots of dry oak and spicy bourbon along with subtle vanilla and toasted coconut followed by a robust roasted malt presence. Slightly smokey with hints of dark chocolate, gourmet coffee bean, burnt toast and oatmeal. Nice balance of oak, spirit and roasted malt preventing it from becoming acrid or overly boozy in the nose.

Medium bodied with a strong barrel character that's decently integrated into the flavors of the base beer. Very dry with lots of charred oak and spicy bourbon lingering over the deeply roasted dark malts into a bone dry finish. Unfortunately not as complex as the aroma suggests with the dry wood flavors eliminating the vanilla/coconut notes. Plenty of spicy bourbon flavor but it's not hot or tough to drink. Also, it's not as tasty as the 12 year treatment, tasting like a different bourbon to me all together. Underneath, there is a complex malt backbone with a balance of roasted coffee bean, oatmeal, burnt toast and sweet fudge/chocolate cake notes. This is still a really good beer but the oak presence is a bit too strong for my liking and the bourbon flavor didn't live up to my expectations.

10-24-2012 03:15:57 | More by corby112
Photo of yourefragile
yourefragile

District of Columbia

4.75/5  rDev +6.3%

Bottle 2577, 2011, shared with Billy and Mike. Third straight day of drinking this beer. yikes.

Pours a near opaque milk chocolate brown with a quickly dissipating dark mocha head. Aroma and flavor are smooth, barrel dominant and nearly beyond nearly any other BA stout. Aroma is barrel sweet and mildly spicy; vanilla, bourbon, butter blend with caramel, burnt sugar and mild alcohol. Body is medium thick, smooth and silky with a soft warming alcohol presence in the finish. Barrel and stout blend together perfectly with layers of vanilla, sugar, roast malt, chocolate, figs, plum and smooth bourbon. My favorite 2011 Eclipse fresh and in my opinion surpasses 2009 EC and this year's 12 EC. Hopefully the increased production will make this beer easier to acquire; seek this out now.

12-12-2011 06:39:50 | More by yourefragile
Photo of orangesol
orangesol

Pennsylvania

4.33/5  rDev -3.1%

Big thanks to Deuane for opening his newly purchased bottle for us to try. I was really looking forward to trying this one.

A - Pours black as night with a nice one finger tall tan head leaving light lace down the glass. A little light on the carbonation it seems...

S - Smells fairly similar to the 12yr. with a bit more barrel to it. Still has plenty of vanilla, chocolate, and coffee but the bourbon and oak have really taken this bottle over.

T - Starts off with a big dose of bourbon heat slowly giving way to a mix of sweet vanilla and chocolate and day old coffee grounds. Finish is pretty dry with plenty of oak tannins. Like the 12yr., I can only imagine how good this beer will be with some time on it.

M - Heavy body and flavor with moderately low carbonation. Fairly similar to the 12yr. in that has a smooth body, maybe a bit more booze and tannins in this version.

O - This one was pretty good, although not as good as the 12yr. I still have one of these in the cellar and I look forward to revisiting this one in the future.

01-25-2012 05:50:35 | More by orangesol
Photo of stakem
stakem

Pennsylvania

4.04/5  rDev -9.6%

Bomber #4046 from 2011 poured into a matching Eclipse snifter. The brew appears a dark brown color with lighter brown seen around the edges. A thin film of khaki bubbles collects around the edge of the glass and leaves some spots of lace on the glass.

The aroma includes vanilla and caramel with a touch of fruity bourbon and toffee-like burnt sugars extracted from the barrel during aging. Some roast elements and a bit of bourbon accents that already warming fruity alcohol edge.

The taste has some raw woody elements and earth with oak barrel flavoring and an alcohol burn that is slightly raisony. Some earth and more solvent booze towards the back with a bit of herbal hop kick before blending into a roasty coffee-like aftertaste.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It is smooth yet boozy and bitey. Dare I say the aroma is significantly better than the flavor but still very good and warming. A pleasantly complex sipper that is not showing its 2 years of aging at all.

10-21-2013 14:54:02 | More by stakem
Photo of drewone
drewone

California

4/5  rDev -10.5%

12-20-2011 05:02:13 | More by drewone
Photo of duceswild
duceswild

Maryland

4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

03-09-2013 20:51:08 | More by duceswild
Photo of BARFLYB
BARFLYB

Pennsylvania

4.23/5  rDev -5.4%

Imperial Eclipse Stout, Elijah Craig (18 Year) from FiftyFifty Brewing Co is a black stout with a dark tan bordering on brown cap that left some splotches on the glass.

Smell is what you would expect from the style, dark chocolate with slight vanilla notes and oak toppled by the blend of bourbon BA'ing resulting in bourbon and stout. Some dark fruit pops out. I May have smelled the honey used, but that could be my mind.

This is nice, not as large than I was expecting in body, yet tons of flavor from the barrel without losing the base beer. Nice hits of charred oak, vanilla, booze, chocolate, cocco, and some roasted malt. By this time the hops have all but faded leaving for a malty ride.

Feel is a little thin for the style. I kind of like that as it makes it easier for me to drink, and Im sure it helps to pick up more of the barrel in a thinner stout. The carb was a bit lacking, yet not dead. Over time, it dwindled. A great beer but 5oz's are plenty for me.

09-03-2012 17:43:52 | More by BARFLYB
Photo of Huhzubendah
Huhzubendah

District of Columbia

4.53/5  rDev +1.3%

Shared this with Thorpe and Thorpette after they brought over a steak dinner recently (they're total ballers). Amy was holding and ogling my newborn son, so she drank hers with a crazy straw. Anywho...

The beer is dark brown with a nice beige head. Noticeably more carbonation than the Brewmaster's Grand Cru I opened recently.

Nice aroma - bourbon, vanilla, chocolate, oak. A lot of wood character.

The best of the series to this point, though I still have many to work through. Surprisingly pleasant notes of toasted marshmallow, coconut, vanilla. Really digging the subtle complexities at work here. This was served at 60 degrees, so many of the more delicate characteristics jumped out right away. Of course, bourbon, chocolate and oak are front and center, but the nuances steal the show in this beer.

Medium to full bodied with adequate carbonation. Still a bit on the low side. Silky and smooth on the palate.

A winner. I definitely recommend it.

02-22-2012 01:27:51 | More by Huhzubendah
Photo of Gonzoillini
Gonzoillini

Illinois

4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

02-05-2012 16:21:23 | More by Gonzoillini
Photo of BillRoth
BillRoth

Maryland

4.25/5  rDev -4.9%

07-11-2013 02:46:57 | More by BillRoth
Photo of Mebuzzard
Mebuzzard

Colorado

4.75/5  rDev +6.3%

05-05-2012 17:00:47 | More by Mebuzzard
Photo of John_M
John_M

California

4.48/5  rDev +0.2%

The beer pours a blackish brown color with good head retention and lacing. The nose is quite impressive in this beer, as I pick up considerable vanilla, dark chocolate, bourbon, maltballs, coffee and a hint of anise. The beer is every bit as terrific on the palate, and the flavor profile seemed to be dominated by chocolate fudge, vanilla, noticeable bourbon and light licorice. There was also a hint of bitterness in the finish that, along with the licorice, seemed to help counter the sweetness in this beer. This beer has quite a presence in the mouth, and is almost decadently smooth, creamy, rich and long. Alcohol is pretty well integrated into the flavor profile, though you can definitely tell it's up there a bit in this beer.

Just a great beer. Really a lot going on in this one. Excellent stuff.

03-17-2012 16:04:20 | More by John_M
Photo of mdaschaf
mdaschaf

Washington

4.48/5  rDev +0.2%

Thanks to Shane for bringing this one down to share! Review from notes, consumed side by side with EC12. Most of the attributes were very similar to EC12.

A: Pours a dark black with a small khaki/tan head on top. Moderate retention and minimal lacing.

S: A nice blend of chocolate (dark and sweet), vanilla, and bourbon. Some roasted malt, a little bit of dark fruit, and caramel.

T: Again, similar to EC 12 with a great combination of chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, and roasted malt. A touch of caramel and toffee finish it off.

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

O: A very good beer, I found 12 and 18 to very similar, and probably wouldn't be able to pick them apart, or even tell that they are different beers. Score will be the same, even though I liked 12 more because the difference in scoring is too large to reflect how close they beers were for me.

06-04-2012 21:20:29 | More by mdaschaf
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
Beerandraiderfan

Nevada

4.54/5  rDev +1.6%

This was the very first beer I had at the release party. Looked like a good beer, like they thickened it up a little, black pour, good amount of cherry cola like head on the top of it, something most Eclipses haven't been able to accomodate. Aroma was a blast of alcohol at first, but mellowed into a nice chocolate and bourbon blend that is what puts butts in seats at this place.

Taste was even better, alcohol blast was gone, really gone, chocolate made totality's heavy roast base fall into the background while vanilla lay prominent. Good chewy mouthfeel on it, bigger than any other Eclipse I had enjoyed up until this point. Oak impact slight. Sometimes the beer got silky. Ended up going back for this a few more times at the end of the night. It kept getting better. Can't wait for the first bottle of this one.

01-09-2012 18:56:40 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of billab914
billab914

Virginia

4.65/5  rDev +4%

2011 vintage poured from a 22oz bottle into my Devil's Backbone tulip. It poured pitch black in color with a thin tan head clinging to the edges of the glass.

The aroma is very rich with chocolate, bourbon, oak and vanilla all coming out in it. I get a little bit of roasty coffee to it as well. The bourbon barrel flavors are well done and very complimenting. A lot of bold flavors are there, but it really comes together well and balances the imperial stout and barrel aging characteristics very well.

The taste shows more of the bourbon and chocolate up front. The finish is where I get more of the woody oak and vanilla mixing with some roasted malt bitterness. The oak seems to outshine the bourbon a little for me. Very smooth with some excellent, bold flavors to it. Again it really comes together well and feels very balanced and smooth for the style.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied for the style with carbonation being moderate. It did feel a little thin at times, which is probably my biggest criticism of it. A little heavier mouthfeel and lower carbonation like BCS for example would really put this one over the top.

Overall it was a great beer. They really did a good job complimenting the beer with some great bourbon flavors. Very bold and flavorful but also smooth and drinkable. Very nice beer to sip on this evening. This one definitely rivals some of the best barrel aged beers I've had.

03-18-2012 01:31:50 | More by billab914
Photo of HopHead84
HopHead84

California

2.73/5  rDev -38.9%

12/24/2011

Bottle opened by me on Christmas Eve after my box randomly showed up the day before. Luckily I was there to receive it as I had no idea it was coming because I never received a tracking number.

A: Looks like Eclipse. The color is black and there's a not insubstantial light brown head that fades quickly.

S: Chocolate, a ton of licorice and anise, molasses, and somewhat harsh barrel phenolics. There's a little bourbon, but oak, licorice, and fusel alcohol dominate this.

T: This is a letdown. Lots of oak and harsh alcohol notes with a lot of licorice. Chocolate and bourbon are feeble. Astringency accompanies oak and stinging booze in the licorice finish. This tastes like the underwhelming bottles of Eclipse I had last year when they had severe bottle variation. I guess they haven't solved that problem.

M: Full body but somewhat thin and watery. Carbonation is low.

Overall: I had an ounce of EC 18 (not enough for a review) from a bottle shared by a friend that was really outstanding so I was excited for this, but after opening my first bottle I've come to the realization that perhaps this year's Eclipse versions will be riddled with bottle variation like they were last year. Hopefully I have better luck with the rest of my bottles.

12-27-2011 22:46:03 | More by HopHead84
Photo of liamt07
liamt07

Ontario (Canada)

4.75/5  rDev +6.3%

10-27-2013 19:00:57 | More by liamt07
Photo of HuskyinPDX
HuskyinPDX

Washington

4.75/5  rDev +6.3%

2011 bottle #2300 split three ways.

A - Pours a very dark brown with a nice tan head. Decent retention and lots of lacing.

S - Chocolate, vanilla, toffee, coffee.

T - Vanilla, chocolate, toffee. Super complex and delicious.

D - Decent carbonation for the style and heavier nice body.

O - So good and complex. Very nice.

Edit:
2012 Version as well.
Reserve BR1
Tons of toffe, carmel, vanilla, barrel and a touch of anise. I think 12 is maybe even better than the 11. Great stuff. Scores Updated for the 2012 version.

03-24-2012 07:06:28 | More by HuskyinPDX
Photo of THECPJ
THECPJ

Delaware

4.5/5  rDev +0.7%

02-09-2012 19:21:53 | More by THECPJ
Imperial Eclipse Stout - Elijah Craig (20 Year) from FiftyFifty Brewing Co.
99 out of 100 based on 548 ratings.