1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

Black Betty Imperial Stout - Reserve Series Aged In Whiskey Barrels - Nebraska Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Black Betty Imperial Stout - Reserve Series Aged In Whiskey BarrelsBlack Betty Imperial Stout - Reserve Series Aged In Whiskey Barrels

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

262 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 262
Reviews: 92
rAvg: 3.97
pDev: 14.86%
Wants: 95
Gots: 83 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Nebraska Brewing Company visit their website
Nebraska, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.30% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: RedHaze on 01-05-2010

Black as night and every bit Imperial, this RIS was originally launched to tremendous accolades. Going further, this Stranahan’s Whiskey barrel aged version meshes the rich chocolates, the coffee-like aromatics with the sweet whiskey nose and drying character of the oak. Slightly behind on the palette are the hops – held in restraint by the wonderfully full mouthfeel and broad flavors brought on by the perfect blend of so many malted barley varieties. Ready to enjoy upon release and perfect for extended cellaring.

83 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Black Betty Imperial Stout - Reserve Series Aged In Whiskey Barrels Alström Bros
Ratings: 262 | Reviews: 92 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of APB
4/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of Omer4176
3.75/5  rDev -5.5%

Photo of artnerd
2/5  rDev -49.6%

Photo of dorkinajeep
4/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of t0rin0
3/5  rDev -24.4%

Photo of Stoutfan23DJ
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Lost Abbey Stemware glass at 55 Degrees.
2011 Vintage - 750ml bottle - 9% ABV - Imperial Stout Aged in Whiskey Barrels for 6 Months

Appearance: Poured a jet black along with a small tan head that disappears down to lacing in less than a minute. Looks beautiful and intimidates me to start drinking immediately!

Aroma: A presence of spicy whiskey, bourbon and oak, coffee beans, roasted barley and malts, rye, chocolate, touch of smoke, new leather, and a slight fruit sweetness on the nose.

Taste: I immediately get the big rye whiskey and bold bourbon, charred oak, and a nice vanilla also from the barrels. The most present of all the elements in this is the bourbon/whiskey barrel characteristics but it doesn’t cover up or overpower anything else at all. Mixed with the barrel characteristics, I also receive the rich mélange of cocoa, caramel and roasted barley and malts together, the smooth bittersweet chocolate, sweet molasses, espresso coffee beans, anise, dark fruit, bitter hops on the back end and a very slight alcohol burn on the finish when it starts to warm up. The barrel characteristics and the base beer come together very well and really complement each other.

Mouth feel: In-between a medium/thick body, carbonation is minimal but is where it should be. This is another great big complex beer that persuades you to slow down, sip on this for an hour or two and just simply appreciate it.

Overall: Overall, this is right on-par with the other top-shelf barrel-aged Russian Imperial Stouts on the market and the best beer I’ve ever had from the state of Nebraska. This is the second whiskey barrel stout that I’ve had and is right on-par with the Flying Dog barrel-aged Gonzo Porter. In the end, this was an impressive RIS with really great barrel characteristics integrated with a really solid, robust yet smooth base beer. Big complexity, well-balanced, and well-crafted!

Photo of tdm168
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - black with a thin brown head that has decent retention

S - earthy, roasted malts, anise, chocolate

T - chocolate, dark fruit, roasted malts, licorice, sugar, woody, faint whiskey

M - full bodied, smooth, perfectly carbonated

This is a fantasticly balanced, drinkable stout. It will warm you up on a cold day, and has enough complexity that you could drink the 750mL by yourself without getting fatigued. This was very enjoyable.

Photo of CMB2012
4/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of Mantooth
4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of jklecko2
4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of Kendo
3.95/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Purchased late December, 2011 in MA. It sat in my cellar for about 6 months, then it made its way to my DBF. Consumed October 6, 2012.

A: Poured from the 750 ml into a Duvel tulip. It pours black with a small tan head that settles quickly.

S: Bourbon/whiskey over roasted barley malt and roasted coffee beans. Booze dominates, but it's not harsh.

T: Follows the nose, more or less: roasted coffee, coffee beans and whiskey. Lots of whiskey. Some notes of vanilla on the back end of the palate, and the alcohol heat is noted both on the palate and on the way down. Still, it's not "hot" in a harsh way; I could drink the whole bottle as a sipper (I split this one with a friend) and be OK with that. I can't say that about many overly boozy -bal-aged RISes.

M: First impression overall was with the mouthfeel - it seemed thinner than expected for this style. Call it medium in heft, with a slightly harsh feel to it.

O: Decent stuff. The whiskey is definitely noticeable, but it plays nice with the Stout characteristics and adds a layer of complexity to the beer without overwhelming it entirely. Not the greatest I've ever had in this style, and not worth what I paid for it (about $25), but solid.

Photo of Wamba
4.75/5  rDev +19.6%

Photo of climbeer07
4.75/5  rDev +19.6%

Photo of MystikCelt
4/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of Beeradelphia
4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of nickhiller
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%

Photo of Schlais
4/5  rDev +0.8%

Photo of 3Hops
4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of Gambrinus1184
4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of kojevergas
3.52/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

1 pint 9.4 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into an Antwerp beer passion weekend in me friend Bo's gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are quite high as I usually love the style - though this is me first beer from this brewery. I was raised in Denver and quie fancy Stranahan's whiskey for what it is.

Allowed to warm after removal from the refrigerator - and considerably moreso thereafter. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

9.0%. I believe I acquired this at Wally's Wine in Westwood California.

A: Pours a 1.5 finger khaki-light tan colour head of very good thickness, good cream, and excellent retention considering the high ABV. Colour is a predictable solid nontransparent opaque black. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Decent lacing.

Sm: Coffee, delightful roast, dark malts, whiskey, biscuity yeast, light woods, chocolate, vague complementary floral hops, cream, and light subtle caramelization. A mild strength aroma.

T: Subtle coffee and subtle chocolate over top an unobtrusive dark malt foundation. Hints of warm whiskey (themselves featuring light hints of peat). Not as much roast as I'd like, but some is there - and that's more than I can say about most imperial stouts. It's got body, but isn't as bold and overbearing as most beers in the style. I wouldn't refer to it as complex, but it has a reserved subtlety that I like. Very tasty. Hardly any heat or alcohol at all. The balance is pretty well-executed, but no note is dominant - a feature I find off-putting. The flavour profile lacks direction and focus as a result. You have to commit to a direction; you can't amble around with many of the components of a good imperial stout without choosing which to emphasize.

Mf: Nowhere near as thick as most beers in the style, which is a good thing. Nicely coarse, but nowhere near dry enough. This is wrong for a stout.

Dr: Quite pricey relative to the quality - which is still high but not so much as to justify the expense. Hides its ABV quite well. I look forward to trying more (hopefully more affordable) brews from Nebraska. Quite drinkable in any case.

High B-

Photo of RblWthACoz
4.13/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is one of the more interesting barrel aged stouts I can recall enjoying. There are no harsh and obnoxious tones that I get from so many other barrel aged beers. Very faint vanilla tones hit me. There is a booze tone to it, but it seems to chill out fairly quickly and translates to a minor burn. Something about it seems appealing and proper to me. I think this beer's reception will mostly depend on the drinker. You like really flavor forward in your face kinda beers? This may not be one of your favorites.

Photo of cfh64
2.5/5  rDev -37%

Photo of birchstick
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque black with a billowing chocolate colored head. Nose is dark baker's chocolate with some nice bourbony spicy vanilla flavors hovering. On the palate, it starts off with sweet chocolates, and moves onto a bit of sweet vanilla flavors. Some dark chocolates then come in with a thunderous entrance and envelopes the tongue. Spicy bourbon replaces it toward the back, but the dark chocolates still stand strong...ends with some bourbony spiciness. Pretty solid palate. The mouth is full and coats the tongue as a beer like this should. Overall, I don't know if this is worth the price point it commands, however it is a pretty damned good barrel aged beer. Might be the first I have had aged in Stranahan's taboot. Recommended if you are flush with cash and don't mind dropping some coin on a good barrel aged RIS.

Photo of fiedler84
4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

Photo of notchucknorris
4.38/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Black as night with a one finger khaki head that settles to about 1/4 inch. Leaves tons of speckled lacing down the glass.

S: Freshly ground medium roast coffee, chocolate syrup, roasted malt, licorice and some faint sweet whiskey notes.

T: Opens on the sweet end with some chocolate cake, dark chocolate covered espresso beans and molasses. Then progresses towards a drying finish of charred wood, whiskey and some burnt brownies. It definitely warms but it's far from what I would consider "hot." Mouthfeel is slightly heavy without weighing down the flavors too much. I don't know if I can justify the price, but this is tasty business.

Black Betty Imperial Stout - Reserve Series Aged In Whiskey Barrels from Nebraska Brewing Company
89 out of 100 based on 262 ratings.