Imperial Eclipse Stout - Elijah Craig (20 Year) - FiftyFifty Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 548 | Reviews: 153 | Display Reviews Only:
4.72/5 rDev +5.6%
Bottle number 169. 2011
The beer is a dark brown color, bordering on pitch black. A wisp of tan bubbles floats on the surface for a moment, then disappears. The nose is booze, dark fruit and molasses. Taste starts out sweet with notes of chocolate, roasted malt and dates. Hints of oak vanilla, and bourbon come through mid-palate. The finish is semi-dry with a lingering boozy aftertaste. The beer is full bodied, thick and viscous, with minimal carbonation. Overall this is really well done. Great flavors of chocolate, roasted malt, vanilla and bourbon, all integrated seamlessly to provide a smooth drinking, incredibly tasty imperial stout. Highly recommended
01-29-2012 09:40:30 | More by Sideswipe
4.3/5 rDev -3.8%
Poured into a Founders snifter, thanks to drink__ for making this a nice little back end of our interesting trade.
A - Pours fairly dark with a great looking head. Wow, I really didn't expect this at all in comparison to many under-carbonated bottles I've consumed. The head fades into thin lacing with a little bit of lacing and some small bubbles. Sticks to the side of the glass well enough.
S - Mild fudge, strong oak aroma. Light vanilla, slightly more of a toffee/caramel aroma in the middle. Then oak again. I'm confused by what seems to be virgin oak surrounding the entire nose.
T - Fudge, light vanilla and toffee. Somewhat expected by the aroma, although the dry oak doesn't come out until the end. No real booziness evident...maybe a slight amount about 3/4 through the flavor. There is some sweetness in the backbone as well that seems to help carry the vanilla/toffee flavors. More fudge battles light vanilla in the dry finish. The dryness seems to come on just a bit too early. That is a shame, because the rest of the flavors are great. (4.25)
M - Medium to, dare I say, full body? Interesting. It does seem thicker than previous releases. There is carbonation and a thicker body that really adds to the flavors. It starts off a little light on the tongue, but then sticks very well.
O - This is an improvement on the 2010 releases in body and head retention. I also like the look of the white wax, but that should be irrelevant. It is a good beer, but I don't really know how it will hold up with time. With the exception of the early-onset dry finish, the rest of the beer is great. I'm having a tough time dropping the taste down to the 4.0, as I think it is lower than a 4.5 but higher than a 4.0.
I just opened bottle #1848 and noticed some different flavors. There is a dark fruit aroma/taste element that I didn't find before.
01-27-2012 04:59:43 | More by claaark13
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
4.35/5 rDev -2.7%
Poured into a snifter. 2011 vintage, bottle #4016. White wax so I have the correct listing.
This is my third version of this year (EC 12 and BT blend) and fourth overall ('10 EW).
4.5 A: Black color. One and a half fingers of creamy tan head. Retention is good and a big ring of lacing is left. Like the others, this one looks good.
4.0 S: This is as smooth as the EC 12 was, but it's much more lively. First, the bourbon brings out the chocolate in the stout much like the BT blend did. The bourbon itself is leathery, mildly fruity, and earthy. Booze is in check and there are no signs of astringency or off-flavors. The barrel gives a soft vanilla that complements well. Soft roastiness from the stout. I very much like the aroma, but I still want more from the stout.
4.5 T: I must say I'm impressed with the taste. I expected all of the variants to be let downs due to the simplicity of the base beer, but this is too tasty not to love. The EC works magic in this. The strongest flavor is creme brulee with leather, melon, light dark fruit, and light earthiness. Slightly boozy, but it's actually a nice addition and super smooth. Soft roast and moderate chocolate from the base stout.
4.0 M: Hell, even the mouthfeel is better. It's the same medium body, but there's a noticeable increase in the creaminess. Good moderate carbonation. Super smooth.
4.5 D: I'm very glad to have had this and so far this is the only variant I've had that is worth what I paid. Very tasty beer. If the base stout was better, this would be a favorite of mine for sure.
01-24-2012 01:28:08 | More by DavoleBomb
4.5/5 rDev +0.7%
2011 vintage (#4736). Poured from 750ml bottle into a tulip glass. Pours dark black with a medium tan head that quickly dissispates into a thin lacing that lasts well throughout. Aromas of roast nuts, some bourbon, brown sugar, and oak. Light Elijah Craig bourbon heat upfront in the flavor along some coffee and perhaps figs. There is a distinct sweet smell that is difficult for me to pinpoint. Slightly bitter back finish. Medium mouthfeel. Damn smooth and tasty beer. I will have this beer again and do want to try the other Eclipse variants.
01-23-2012 21:17:11 | More by CuriousMonk
4.65/5 rDev +4%
A: Oily and black with a thin light brown head. Tons of lacing down the glass. Really good stuff.
S: Rich aromas of coconut, milk chocolate, bourbon, toffee and fudge. I could smell this all day. Truly incredible.
T: Nearly as good as the aroma. Coconut and some chocolate sweetness upfront, caramel, some honey and a touch of roasted malt and coffee on the finish. The slightest touch of bitterness at the end. Mouthfeel is absolutely perfect. Slick and velvety without being syrupy. I love this beer.
01-22-2012 07:40:26 | More by notchucknorris
4.47/5 rDev 0%
22oz bottle with white wax.
Pour is consistent with all the 09 and 10's I've had, which is to say it's a little lighter than most impy stouts, dark chocolate brown with a small beige head that sticks to the sides on the way down.
Aroma is sublime, big on the bourbon, possibly the most whiskey-forward of any of the versions I've smelled before. Lots of coconut and vanilla from the barrels with the underlying chocolate malts taking a bit of a back seat.
The taste is a little different but almost as good. The bourbon is there but doesn't have quite the same vanilla and coconut character. It's more oak and booze with a heavier dose of roast than the aroma.
Mouthfeel is trademark Eclipse, crazy smooth but not overly thick.
Todd consistently makes some of the most drinkable and well-integrated barrel-aged stouts and this is no exception. This particular iteration is a little heavier on the bourbon than I would prefer (HH09 is damn near ecstasy) but is still excellent. Can't wait to try the other 2011 versions.
01-20-2012 04:27:16 | More by gford217
3.98/5 rDev -11%
Poured into a snifter from a 2011 650ml bottle.
A: Deep opaque brown, only seen through on the edges. Thin tan head quickly disappears leaving a small coating.
S: Mellow, but mostly bourbon and oak, slight sweetness comes through.
T: Same as the smell, huge alcohol bourbon sweetness with vanilla mixing in and out. Slight chocolate notes, but very subtle. Easy to sip.
M: Full bodied with light fizzy carb, syrupy.
O: The price of this is my biggest gripe, my second gripe is the price. I like this, but for $30.
01-18-2012 17:35:22 | More by keanex
4.08/5 rDev -8.7%
White waxed bottle poured into a snifter after being pulled from the wine cooler set to 55'F.
Obsidian black and topped by a creamy hot chocolate colored head that is well retained for a stout of this gravity. Additionally, as it dissipates and I drink, swirls of lace are deposited all over the walls of the glass.
The nose is surprisingly devoid of any bourbon character. Sweet clover honey, deep ashy tobacco, and roasted malts mix with warm alcohol in the background to round out the aroma. The flavor is more on par with what I was expecting. Toffee, caramel, and molasses all come out where they were completely lost in the aroma. As the beer opens up, so do the barrel notes. Bourbon, a ton of vanilla, and toasted oak balance some of the ashy tobacco that was so overpowering in the aroma. The finish ends with some sweeter chocolate and hints of the clover honey, as well as the warm alcohol.
In my previous experience with the PVW Eclipse, I found the texture thin and disappointing. Not so here. Creamy and full-bodied, this is much more what I expect to see from an Imperial Stout. Looking forward to drinking the rest of the varieties, for sure.
01-18-2012 02:16:19 | More by NittanyBeerFan
4.43/5 rDev -0.9%
22oz bottle poured into a duvel tulip
Appearance: Black in color with a 0.5 inch mokah head, no retention, but noticeable lacing
Nose: Molases, caramel, bourbon, oak, and vanilla.
Taste: Roasted malt, toffee, bourbon and oak, all followed by light chocolate and a coffee finish
Mouth: Velvetty and flowing on the palate though there is a slight acerbic note on the finish
Overall: An excellent stout, wish the mouthfeel was a bit smoother, but all in all I would definitely re-visit this if not for the price.
01-17-2012 13:06:38 | More by 2378GCGTG
5/5 rDev +11.9%
Smell is of foral honey and dark malts of roast and sweetness.
Taste is of dark fruits and honey with the carmel and vanilla from the bourbon. Perfect balance of everything in play here.
body is very nice not too thick but it is an imperial stout. thick
Overall one of the best beers I have had in my life!
01-17-2012 07:19:03 | More by pperrecone
Imperial Eclipse Stout - Elijah Craig (20 Year) from FiftyFifty Brewing Co.
99 out of 100 based on 548 ratings.