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Atwater Bourbon Barrel Aged Shaman's Porter - Atwater Brewery

Not Rated.
Atwater Bourbon Barrel Aged Shaman's PorterAtwater Bourbon Barrel Aged Shaman's Porter

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
77
okay

142 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 142
Reviews: 35
rAvg: 3.36
pDev: 17.56%
Wants: 4
Gots: 21 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Atwater Brewery visit their website
Michigan, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: DrDoitchbig on 09-28-2011

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 142 | Reviews: 35 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ZEB89
2.87/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Photo of dbl_delta
3.33/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Bottle dated October 2014. Pours a dark, almost black burgundy color. Thick tan head. I let it sit for a while - it was almost room temperature by the time I tasted it.

This is a robust porter - almost tastes/feels like a stout. Moderate carbonation accentuates the thick, chewy mouthfeel. At first, bourbon flavor predominates. Later, there was vanilla and maybe licorice. Little if any hops presence. Unfortunately, there was also an odd aftertaste that I can't identify. Tasting started off well ("hey, this might be pretty good") but in this case first impressions proved unreliable. I ended up feeling like I needed to brush my teeth.

There are better BBA porters out there.

Photo of divzqt
2.31/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

This is honestly just awful. It smells like some artificial bourbon flavor was added. The taste is even worse. I'm not even sure how to describe it. It finishes like you just put a penny in your mouth. Very strong bitter chemical flavor. I feel like Atwater puts flavoring extract into bad beer and throws it on the shelf. Pass on this one.

Photo of zenithberwyn
2.75/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Photo of montesown
2.02/5  rDev -39.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Not sure what they do with their beer - but this was terrible. No taste of the bourbon at all, in fact I am not really sure what I was tasting. Kind of like a bunch of chemicals added together.

Photo of Alextricity
3.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottled October 2014. $3.29 single poured into a shaker pint, since it's all that was clean. Not expecting much here because: 1.) Atwater's almost always mediocre at best and 2.) A BBA'd beer for only $3.29? Eek.

Appearance: Hard pour gives off two fingers of a soapy tan head with big bubbles that goes down to one. Bits of lacing. The beer looks the part of the porter -- black with a ruby tint and perfect clarity when held to light. At least it's a very nice looking porter.

Smell: I don't know what I'm smelling, really. It's not immediately obvious to me. It feels like I'm smelling it through a cloth or something ... muddled, for sure. I can say one thing, it doesn't smell especially BBA'd. I get maybe a little bit of barrel and vanilla characteristics, but very little. Other than that, a little roast, and dark fruit in almost equal amounts. Quite underwhelming.

Taste/feel: I just backspaced my entire review of the taste because the beer opened up a lot when it got a little warmer. The chocolate flavor got semi-sweet, the feel turned a little creamy, the barrel became much more noticeable, the metallic aftertaste left the building, Etc. Nice roast and chocolate flavors throughout, with only a little of the dark fruits I had when it was right out of the fridge. It's not a "holy shit" BBA'd beer, but it's also a porter (not a stout), and under 7% ABV. The feel is pretty good for the style... pretty high prickly carbonation with a light body.

Underrated... that's all there is to it, really. At first sip I was hugely underwhelmed. As I sipped my way down and the beer approached room temperature, I was more impressed. Is it comparable to other BBA'd beers out there? No, because it's Atwater (don't expect too much from them), and mostly, it's a 7% porter, not a 12% stout. The barrel doesn't have a huge presence in this beer, so it makes it accessible to anyone who's interested in trying the style, but doesn't want to completely shock their palate. It's not an AWESOME beer, but one I could see myself having again considering the price. A solid "poor man's" BBA'd porter.

Photo of ngaron
3.37/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of nathanmiller
4/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of justintcoons
3.15/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a pub-style pint glass.

Appearance
Near-black with 1 finger of khaki colored head.

Nose
Dark chocolate, cinnamon, mint, and roasted barley.

Taste
Strange...tastes like mint leaf, cinnamon, and perhaps cedar wood. Some notes of oaky saw dust. Roasted barley, root beer, and cocoa nib.

Mouthfeel
Medium-light bodied, crisp, and off-dry with a medium bitterness.

Overall
Not the best barrel presence on this. Strange flavors of cedar, cinnamon, and mint.

Photo of MenardMa
3.28/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of scottr4073
3.79/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Photo of bwarren82
3.1/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Photo of wac9
3.88/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

what a wonderful beer it dark creamey taste some vanilla great aftertaste thats the burbon barrell i love it enjoy

Photo of Axnjxn
3.75/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of SFNC
2.38/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.25

Most likely my last beer from Atwater. I dont know why, or if it's just me, but all their beers taste like chemicals. This looks good in the glass, dark blackish brown with slight ruby highlights. A minimal head that leads to moderate lacing. Smell is light, not bad, some roasted barley, a whiff of wood and a slight chocolate scent. Then you taste it. Ugh. Cola like on the fromt end, followed by the oak, followed by Lysol. The aftertast is harsh, bitter and not of the natural world. The mouthfeel is thin for a Baltic Porter, low carbonation. I feel my liver retract with each sip. Sorry, this one sucks.

Photo of Zaphog
2.95/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of jjd315
4.02/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Geekydad79
3.31/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Photo of StoutHunter
2.28/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2

I picked up a bottle of Atwater's Bourbon Barrel Aged Shaman's Porter last week for $4.29 at The Lager Mill. I reviewed this beer a few years ago when it had a different label that didn't really say anything about it being barrel aged, at the time I gave it a 1.86, so lets see what I think of it now. 2014 Vintage Poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a snifter.

A- The label looks ok, but i don't see how it goes with the name and I don't think it's too eye catching. It poured a dark brown color that was a little close to being black and it didn't let any light come through with a finger and half of creamy tan head that died down to a thin ring that stayed till the end and it left some patchy lacing behind. This a pretty nice looking beer, I have no complaints.

S- The aroma starts off with a higher amount of medium sweetness with a light roasted malt aroma being the first to show along with a little bit of chocolate and some coffee showing up in the background. Up next comes a watery aroma with a slight fruity aroma that goes right into the barrel which is really light and only imparts a light oaky aroma. This beer didn't have a great aroma, it was very light for the style and the barrels hardly showed up,

T- The taste seems to be similar to the aroma and just as light, it starts off with a slightly higher amount of medium sweetness with the malts still being the first to show up and they only impart a light roasted malt and chocolate flavor with no coffee showing up this time. Up next comes a light fruity yeast aroma that leads right into the barrel s which show up more than they did in the aroma and they impart some somewhat lighter oak, bourbon and vanilla like flavors. On the finish there's a slightly higher amount of light bitterness with a light roasted malt and fairly like bourbon barrel like aftertaste. This wasn't a great tasting beer, the barrel showed up a little more than they did in the aroma, but the porter base was just as light and bland.

M- Smooth, fairly clean, crisp, a little prickly, sticky, on the thicker side of being medium bodied with a higher amount of medium carbonation. The mouthfeel wasn't bad, but i wish it was less carbonated and a little less sticky.


Overall I wasn't a fan of this beer and I didn't think it was a good example of a Bourbon Barrel Aged Porter, the barrel was pretty light, but that wasn't the deal breaker, the deal breaker was how light and bland the porter base was, the barrel didn't have a nice base to be showcased. This beer didn't have the best drinkability, it was smooth, fairly clean, crisp, a little prickly, sticky, not too filing and the taste didn't do a good job at holding my attention, I got bored half way through this beer so one would be my limit. What I like the most about this beer was the appearance, it was a pretty nice looking beer and it was the highlight of this beer. What I like the least about this beer was the how light the porter base was, it really didn't bring much to the table and the barrels only showed up a little more than the malt base. I wouldn't buy this beer again, I should have just stuck with my original review, I don't thinks this beer changed much. I wouldn't recommend it since it's just not a good example of the style. All in all I still don't like this beer, for some reason I thought Atwater might have done a better job with this beer since last time I tried it, but that didn't happen and it's just as bad as I remember. It's one of my least favorite Atwater beers and it's my least favorite of the style. Better luck next time guys, I think you need to go back to the drawing board.

Photo of WuBByG999
3.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Photo of JNForsyth
2.98/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of alcohline_trip
3.2/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Photo of mothman
1.15/5  rDev -65.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

This is the worst barrel aged beer I have ever had. It smells and tastes like tar and dirt. Burnt rubber throughout the beer. Sharpie marker flavor. Ashes and soot. There is little porter flavor in this beer. Do not buy it just because it is a barrel aged beer.

Photo of miffsudd
2.64/5  rDev -21.4%

Photo of AngusOg
2.75/5  rDev -18.2%

Bad, avoid.

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Atwater Bourbon Barrel Aged Shaman's Porter from Atwater Brewery
77 out of 100 based on 142 ratings.