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Aces & Ates - Big Boss Brewing

Not Rated.
Aces & AtesAces & Ates

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

163 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 163
Reviews: 77
rAvg: 3.95
pDev: 13.92%
Wants: 19
Gots: 6 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Big Boss Brewing visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BitterLover on 01-31-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 163 | Reviews: 77 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of dfpratt09
1.5/5  rDev -62%

dfpratt09, Dec 25, 2011
Photo of BDeibs
2/5  rDev -49.4%

BDeibs, Jan 14, 2012
Photo of JDV
2.1/5  rDev -46.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Big thanks to ROBORB for this bottle!
Was really looking forward to this one, but I'm afraid either I had too high of hopes or their bottling line isn't that great.

Pours dark black with a short lived light tan head. Smell is less of coffee than I expected with a huge unwelcomed sour presence. Ugh...

Taste is pretty dull with light roasted malt and coffee flavor, a touch of tartness, and this is actually pretty watery and underwhelming. Thin flavor, and while not as sour in the taste as the smell, the smell was unpleasant and really kills this beer. Smell is sour, taste is watery, body is thin, carbonation is low, and there really is no shining aspect of this beer, unfortunately.

JDV, Mar 29, 2009
Photo of callisbeers
2.28/5  rDev -42.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured in stein. Dark color with small tan head that disappears quickly. Good malty, coffee smell, with a small sour note. Mouthfeel is thin, almost porter-like. Strong sour taste that overpowers all other flavors. Could not finish this one due to the taste. This was bottled in November of 08 as part of a limited release. Perhaps the year in the fridge contributed to the taste. In all fairness, I would try this again but from the tap or drink a bottle immediately after purchase.

callisbeers, Dec 09, 2009
Photo of EgadBananas
2.45/5  rDev -38%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Thanks to injuredreserve for sharing!

2008 vintage. From Notes:

Fairly black pour, maybe a half a finger of slight mocha colored head.

Aroma is faint coffee, butterscotch, mild sweetness with a hint of tart thrown in there.

Taste had a bit more coffee than the aroma, some roasted, some metallic notes and some of that back-end tartness.

Thin and watery feel, low to no carbonation at all.

Drinkability is a challenge to say the least.

I think this boils down to age not doing this thing a bit of good, or poor storage. The feel ruins this completely and the lackluster taste and aromas can't save it for me.

Would love to see how a fresh one fares...

EgadBananas, Feb 25, 2011
Photo of cwelsh55
2.5/5  rDev -36.7%

cwelsh55, Mar 29, 2014
Photo of 7thInningSuds
2.5/5  rDev -36.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appearance: Very dark, coffee look to it.

Smell: Just like coffee. Juan Valdez would love this beer

Taste: If you like beer that tastes like coffee, then you'll like this beer. I'm not a coffee drinker, so this beer did nothing for me. Sampled it as part of a flight at Woody's. Was served in a 3 oz glass. One ounce was enough.

Mouthfeel: Thick beer, as what you would expect from a stout.

Drinkability: Not something I'll try again.

7thInningSuds, Feb 25, 2011
Photo of discovolante65
2.6/5  rDev -34.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Got this one on my recent travels through Raleigh/Durham. Went to a lot of stores, might have been PSM in Raleigh.

22oz serving. Poured into an over-sized wine glass (all my father in law had to use) pours an oil black with no visible carbonation, nice big fat espresso colored head about 1 inch thick that retreated into some pretty lacing that lasted throughout.

Smell is fresh ground coffee, little bit of roasted malt, and some hops presence at the end.

Taste is bitter black coffee with some...figs? cherries? and some anise on the very end, more in the "smaste" than the taste.
Not a lot of alcohol in this, but it's not well hidden. Not at all as complex as I expected.

Mouthfeel is sticky and almost unlikable. I say this because it is entirely too full bodied for the lack of big, complex flavor.

Drinkability, well, I opened it, so I gotta finish it. I'm not sure if they hit the mark on this one. I don't hate it, but I wouldn't seek it out again. I bought a lot of local stuff while visiting the in-laws, this was one of them, maybe the hells belle will be closer to style and more enjoyable.

Wow, I had no idea I was only the third reviewer!

discovolante65, Feb 24, 2009
Photo of rudzud
2.75/5  rDev -30.4%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

Received as an extra in a trade an dpoured into my Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a nice dark brown porter like hue with a nice one finger mocha head that fades to leave a thin thin blanket and light cloud. Solid.

S - Uhh..what? I get no coffee whatsoever on the nose. Light alcohol and metallic notes, a really weird lightly minty note and well, a ceramic pot kind of thing going on. Maybe slightly spoiled...just a mess of weird off aromas that I cannot find the right words to describe. Maybe some vegetative stuff too...

T - Taste is well, average. Those weird, strange aromas are fortunately not in the taste. I get light bakers chocolate, faint older coffee. Sweet black watered down coffee. Lightly bitter on the finish. Pretty average 1-2 punch going on.

M - Mouthfeel is not nearly as creamy as I would like for the style. Somewhat watery, alcohol is hidden though.

O - Overall, this beer was okay. As average as everything was that nose was just awful. Lots of weird off aromas going on here, glad it didn't taste like it but still, pretty meh.

rudzud, Feb 13, 2014
Photo of Mantooth
3/5  rDev -24.1%

Mantooth, Jan 27, 2012
Photo of Sekliw
3/5  rDev -24.1%

Sekliw, Dec 15, 2013
Photo of JeffreyJDavis
3.25/5  rDev -17.7%

JeffreyJDavis, Dec 01, 2012
Photo of ATLbeerDog
3.25/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours pitch black with beautiful red highlights outlining the inside of the glass. Not much carbonation visible. Smells only of coffee with some alcohol notes present in the nose. First sip is strong coffee but not much else. Sure there is some chocolate, and tobacco present but for a coffee stout, there is so much better out there.

ATLbeerDog, Mar 14, 2009
Photo of gford217
3.28/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz bottle courtesy of OldStyleCubFan poured into a snifter.

Pours almost completely black in the glass underneath a one inch rocky tan head that dissipates to a small swirl and collar fairly quickly. Lacing is minimal.

The aroma is very good with lots of dark roasted chocolate malts with enough coffee to make me notice it, but not enough to overpower everything else.

The taste just didn't live up to the nose for me. It was dominated by a dry tangy bitterness (presumably from espresso) that was fairly offputting. There is some dark roasted malts and hints of coffee and chocolate, but the astringent bitterness is tough to get through.

The mouthfeel is velvety smooth with good carbonation and very soft on the palate.

I was expecting good things from this one and the smell was nice, however I wasn't all that impressed with the taste. It seemed fairly one dimensional and that one dimension, coffee, was a little too bitter in its presentation. Anyway, not a bad beer but not one I would go back to.

gford217, Mar 17, 2009
Photo of ryrust5301
3.3/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Looks very much like a porter. Light black color with a thin tan head. A whirlpool like swirl sat on top for awhile before it headed for the hills. Smell is dark roasted malt, but on the other hand is very sweet. Definitely has more of a porter taste and feel to it. Pretty light feel for a stout, as there isn't enough chew to it. Similar to a sweet stout in taste. Very sweet milk chocolate taste with a little bit of coffee notes that try to offset the sugar. Don't really know about this one. Nothing really makes it standout, and isn't one that i'd grab over several other choices.

ryrust5301, Nov 05, 2009
Photo of TurdFurgison
3.43/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I had this on tap at Horniblow's Tavern in Raleigh. The beer is dark black a 1-finger creamy tan foam. The smell is good for a coffee stout, some roasted malts but mostly the dark bean comes through. The taste is likewise good, coffee bean plus sweet malt. My only issue was that the mouthfeel was way too light for the style, very watery. I'd prefer a more substantial body to match the strength of the flavor.

TurdFurgison, Nov 15, 2008
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.43/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bottle 1971/5000. Black coffee black with miniscule margins of coppery burnt orange. The pale caramel colored crown has a tight texture, takes several minutes to lose half its initial height and does an acceptable job of decorating the pint glass. A & A looks the part...

... and smells the part. There's a beautiful, complementary balance between roasted java beans and bittersweet chocolate-like roasted malt, which bodes well for the flavor profile. Let's see if Big Boss can pull off a praiseworthy version of this increasingly popular style of stout.

Whoa! What the hell happened to all the malt? A limited release stout with an ABV of 8.0% should not feel like a 4.5% porter. The beer's lack of size has the usual negative effect on strength and depth of flavor. What's appreciated is decent, it just needs a whole lot more in the way of malty guts.

Like the nose, the taste is appropriately simple... roasted malt and black coffee in roughly equal measure. There's a light char and a small splash of vanilla as well. Malt sweetness is on the low end... and hop bitterness isn't much more prominent. There's no hook here. Nothing to keep the craft beer aficionado coming back for another sip.

The mouthfeel is thin, thinner, thinnest. It's been a while since I've seen a beer of this ABV be this light. The bubbles have a lackluster feel and drag down enjoyability another peg or two.

If Big Boss Aces & Ates was a low-ABV coffee porter, it would have earned higher scores all around. The moral of the story is that if a brewery sets the bar high, they better make every effort to clear it. Unfortunately, this (not very) limited release isn't in any danger of doing that.

BuckeyeNation, Jul 30, 2009
Photo of jhawkjedi
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

jhawkjedi, Feb 03, 2012
Photo of kristougher
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

kristougher, Dec 22, 2013
Photo of 2dogbrew
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

2dogbrew, Jan 25, 2013
Photo of Ivanhoes_Backpack
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

Ivanhoes_Backpack, Sep 23, 2013
Photo of hellhammermario
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

hellhammermario, Jan 09, 2014
Photo of t0rin0
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

t0rin0, Aug 23, 2012
Photo of WOLFGANG
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

WOLFGANG, Jul 21, 2013
Photo of eerbayman
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

eerbayman, Feb 26, 2012
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Aces & Ates from Big Boss Brewing
88 out of 100 based on 163 ratings.