Black Tuesday - The Bruery

Not Rated.
Black TuesdayBlack Tuesday

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

3,242 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,242
Reviews: 631
rAvg: 4.55
pDev: 9.89%
Wants: 3,077
Gots: 1,578 | FT: 176
Brewed by:
The Bruery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  19.20% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: OlieIPA on 07-18-2009

Our infamous Black Tuesday is an imperial stout aged in bourbon barrels for over a year. Rich caramel, toasted malt, vanilla, burnt wood and anise are just a few of the many flavors in this rich, decadent imperial stout.

2009: 19.5% ABV
2010: 18.2% ABV
2011: 18.3% ABV
2012: 19.2% ABV
2013: 18.9% ABV
2014: 19.7% ABV
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,242 | Reviews: 631
Photo of kunstdrache
4.3/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

After having a (really, really) small sample at the HTOD, I was able to try this again at a more formal tasting where I got a good amount to taste.

Pours a deep brown/black- with a small head. Smell is ok- nothing exceptional- strong roasted wood smell coupled with some chocolate and molasses.

Taste is great- You can taste the bourbon paired with the chocolate and it goes together very very well. However my only qualm is that for a thick looking beer it drinks very very thin and makes for a average mouthfeel. However this does help cover the massive ABV.

Overall I was slightly disappointed with this beer- with all this hype I was expecting a mental/sensory explosion- needless to say, I didn't get it.

11/15/2012 *Update*
Now I've had this more than several times, I'm inclined to bump up the scoring. When this first came out, there was this massive aura of HYPE WHALZ around this and it negatively impacted how I , along with several other people viewed tis beer. As it has progressed through the years and lessened that hypeness, it has grown to hold its own among other great BA imperial stouts and I can safety say it's a beer I'd seek out.

Photo of bgramer
3.54/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

After having Black Tuesday at the HOTD dock sale, I looked forward to opening this bottle at a tasting with friends last night so I could give it a proper review.

The beer appears black in my glass fading into a clear brown hue on the edges as I hold it up to the light. I expected it to be a little thicker and more opaque in it's color.

It smells sweet like dark fruits, roasty and oaked. The taste is just like how it smells. There's a dark fruity, bourbon, and vanilla presence that becomes more prominent. Definitely some woody dark chocolate and caramel notes. The mouthfeel is thinner than I expected but the flavors are integrated well which helped mask the 19.5% ABV.

It's quite good and extremely drinkable but is it the best? No, IMHO, but it is definitely one of the better stouts out there.

Photo of glid02
4.8/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Shared by gford217 - much obliged!

Pours black with dark brown highlights as the beer clings to the side of the glass and a thin brown head that quickly recedes into a smooth and oily top. A nice swirl leaves brown legs on the sides of the glass.

Smells of roasted malts with hints of tobacco, vanilla, bourbon, and dark chocolate, more or less in that order.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Mild roasted malt flavors up front are overtaken quickly by vanilla, bourbon, and dark chocolate. Midway through the sip hints of tobacco enter into things but stay in the backseat. The ending is mildly boozy and bitter. The alcohol is absurdly well hidden.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a very smooth thickness with soft and grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is great. I finished my glass with absolutely no problem and could have entirely too much more.

Overall I have to say that it lived up to the hype. I think the best thing about this beer is how well integrated all of the flavors are while managing to not taste overly hot. Not the best beer I've ever had but it certainly has to be part of the conversation.

Photo of FishScales
5/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I have had the pleasure of having this beer both on tap as well as out of the bottle. It is amazing both ways. The most recent time was a couple nights ago we opened a bottle for a friends birthday. The beer was a beautiful dark chocolate color with a nice head to it. All of the aromas from chocolate to bourbon were present as you take your sip from the glass. Even though the ABV is about 19, it goes down smooth and without a bite. Personally I am not a stout drinker, but this is the best beer I have had. It is fantastic!

Photo of calise1122
3.43/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Sometimes a review kills a movie. In fact, often it is hard for a movie ever to live up the incredible hype critics bath it in. I am sure, in these instances - we walk out with a down feeling on what was actually a pretty good movie - but we were expecting Raging Bull, and got it didn't deliver.

Anyway, that aside - we opened the bottle with a certain level of excitement - a definite pop in your step if you will. But something didn't feel right for me, it didn't seem like an authentic "holy shit" moment - as when I opened my first Westy years ago or just a couple months ago having the FW vertical.

All that doesn't matter - what matters is the beer. Once I butchered the hell out of the wax cap and caused an absolute scene - the incredibly thick and heavy liquid was poured into our respective glasses. A great looking beer for sure: just scary dark, with a really pretty head about a centimeter or so thick with a plum/purplish head. Lacing, check. Lots of lacking and a even as we all sat there for an uncomfortable amount of time not knowing what to do - the smell was mushroom tattooing me on the forehead.

Sweet Sweet chocolate with an incredible amount of - well, booze. A wide array of things happening in this one: vanilla, dark sugar plums, brown sugar, tobacco, raisins, licorice, and of course malts. But then, as we are sitting around listening to bleach something happens - the complexity becomes dwarfed by a smell of booze, and not even good booze... almost rubbing alcohol. It becomes a bit off putting and I am not sure how to fairly rate a beer that begins with me saying "this is f'n great" to ehh... "what the hell happened here". I don't want to discount how good it smells, just that it needs time I suppose.

The taste followed the same trend. It began with a very nice and complex flavor, like a cup really good hot chocolate, you get some of the oak, lots of the vanilla and coffee flavors come through. But then it is almost as if the person who made your hot coffee decided to add more mix, to much mix - creating an uber-sweet concoction that became incredibly hard to drink.

The mouth feel was heavy, lush and sticky. The more it warmed up, the stickiness turned from a nice coat over around the tongue to what felt like a bit of Emerson's glue being swirled around.

And I understand the this has to be rated to style, but part of what makes an Imperial Stout so great is when it is drinkable. 2/3rds of us couldn't finish our glass. It was to sweet, to sticky, and to boozy. It was a really different experience... going from what started as an amazing experience to 20 minutes later being on the complete other end of the spectrum. Good beer for sure, by no means my favorite from the Bruery or from the style. Glad I was able to try it

Photo of gregc
3.43/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The infamous Black Tuesday...shared with a few friends...

The bottle pours a richly deep black liquid with a small brownish head. The edges look almost purple.
Aroma starts out nice...rich chocolate, dark fruits, molasses and vanilla. But as this beer warms it starts to head a bit down hill. Overly sweet chocolate and a ton of booze...almost rubbing alcohol like.
Taste is similar to the aroma...lots of rich chocolate, dark fruit, some oak and vanilla. But again as it warms it becomes way too boozy and way to sweet, like drinking chocolate syrup right from the bottle. The booze is also very overpowering at this point.
Mouthfeel is super sticky, overly sweet and very viscous.
I have to say drink ability is not great, but its not horrible. All the sweetness and booze that appears as this warms really kills the drink ability. I find it really hard to believe a lot of these ratings that are giving drink ability such a high score, these people mush be missing a palate and taste buds...Patrick is a great brewer and i applaud the effort, but its a little much...

Photo of cptierney
4.68/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

So, we drove eight hours to Orange County for this bad boy. Big Ups to my main man eliottJW for getting an early allotment and sharing this experience with me.

Poured from a Bruery Champagne bottle into a Russian River Tulip.

The color on this is surprising. While black, there are still hints of light around the edges making a sort of deep brown appearance. A solid pour yielded a one finger width of quickly receding vibrant brown foam. Everything about the pour put any unease about a lack of carbonation at rest. As I drank the glass down there was no lacing left behind.

The nose on this beer frankly frightens me. It's that figgy pudding, ten loaves of bread in a bottle malt punch that I will forever associate with Goose Island's BCS, a beer I do not enjoy. There's the lovely bourbon hit too but it is swallowed by malts. In a nod to the subjectivity of reviews I will note that the smell is full and colorful with a blunt shape. I get a little of the bourbon and maaayyybeee some licorice but ultimately it's a blast of bread.

The mouthfeel is luscious. Velvety liquid coats my palate but doesn't get jammy in the process. The only note here would be related to the carb bite. I would have actually enjoyed an even more viscous brew especially as the bubbles kept reminding me of just how alcoholic this beer is. That said I'd rather take the bite than have a totally flat beer.

The taste on this beast is stupid, and should be illegal. After the abuse of the nose I was expecting the hottest alcohol hit ever, but was met instead by a sumptuous maiden of flavor. There are the dark fruits I crave in a RIS, some prune and maybe a hit of raisin like sweetness. There's also that wonderful Abyss like hint of candied sugars. But the thing that sets BT apart is the incredibly smooth and balanced flavor of bourbon that pervades the quaff. I have to force my tongue upward to taste any bittering on its sides and it is there like I expected, keeping a lid on an extremely sweet beer.

If this astronomically high ABV is correct I can't believe how drinkable this brew is. Clearly meant to be sipped and enjoyed like a distilled beverage, I have never wanted to drink so much of such a potentially dangerous beverage. Hats of to the Bruery. I count myself extremely lucky to try this rare treat.

Photo of juhl31
4.97/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

had ourselves a beer friends road trip from petaluma to placentia to pick 3 bottles up. just had one last night poured into a bruery glass

-dark as beer can get. smallish mocha head that stuck around for the most part but not as much as hoped. basically it looked like it should, but not totally perfect

-bunch of bourbon on the 1st smell. then a bunch of dark chocolate really starts to open up throughout

-dark chocolate and the bourbon are the most glaring. after that i just wrote down words instead of sentences cuz there was so much going on...sweet, port, tobacco, dessert, cigars, dark fruits

-very warming, yet not much of an alcohol bite. always amazing from cold to warm

-despite all the hype, miles driven, money spent, long wait...would have to say this is the best beer i have ever had

Photo of Traquairlover
3.8/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle poured into snifters.

A = On a fairly vigorous pour I get a small quarter inch chocolate brown head that settles relatively quickly into sparse bubbles around the edge of the glass and atop perhaps 25% of the surface.

S = Huge smells of bourbon, maple, melted dark chocolate, vanilla, underneath are some black cherries. There is quite a bit of alcohol burn in there, too, though which I guess I should have expected but so many others have talked about how hidden it is.

T = Rich dark chocolate melted and poured into a cup with fresh heavy cream. Some nuttiness with sharp notes like walnuts have. Oak and vanilla flavors show up at midpalate. At the end and in the aftertaste though I get a kind of thin metallic taste, I think it is the alcohol, but I'm not positive.

M = Very full bodied, luxurious as it swishes around the mouth, extremely good mouthcoating. I could do with slightly less carbonation as it kind of burns when paired with the alcohol, but overall one of the best mouthfeels I've had in a beer.

D = This is a sipper for sure. Indeed, I poured close to 8 ounces in my snifter and wish I would have poured half of that. While quite good, it is a bit overpowering and really does not necessarily draw me to each sip as I could wish it did. Definitely one I'd like to be able to have on other occasions, but I'm not sure if I were going to pick one dessert beer of fortified wine strength to have on hand that it would be this one. Good but just not that extra bit I could wish for.

At the end of the day, it is a very enjoyable beer, but it leaves a somewhat tinny, bitter metallic aftertaste that lingers long after the sweet luscious flavors that make this such a great beer. I would imagine this will be great after two or three years in the bottle, but I am not sure it is actually quite ready for drinking yet.

Photo of vince4953529
4.58/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

After standing more than four hours in line in order to acquire this treasure, with limited fund, I purchased a lone bottle. A month later, with the combination of the occurrence of Thanksgiving, I finally decided to crack open this much-talked-about monster.

Pour into a tulip class, the color was as opaque with a healthy dose of head, even with its high. Smell of powerful bourbon and coffee as soon as the cap dropped.

There wasn't any alcohol burn in my stomach as the I swallowed my first sip. It was a bit sweeter than I've considered ideal, nevertheless it was extremely drinkable given that this brew is near 20% abv.

Easy to go down, but rather hard for me to finish the whole bottle in a timely manner. I opened it on the wee hour of Thanksgiving and continued to sip away the next morning.

Photo of mightyj
5/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - black. pitch dark. brown head

S - smell vanilla bourbon and coffee mainly. pleasant smell. not overwhelmingly alcoholic

T - this is the best beer i have yet to taste. rich malty taste with vanilla and dark chocolate. smooth as silk

M - thick but has a good amount of carbonation for what it is

D - it is a little strong but it goes down so smooth that its amazing that its 19.5%. plenty other IRS have a much stronger alcoholic flavor

Photo of walows
4.9/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes. I have been waiting to review till things simmer down. Had it a couple times are at the Bruery. Here we go...
Poured into a Bruery tulip, pours a wonderful jet black with a ring of brown foam around the outside, upon swirling a bit of foam builds up and quickly dies down. I stick my nose down into the glass with bright notes of vanilla and oak are the first things I smell, next comes this awesome roastiness and smells of chocolate, expresso, molasses and dark sweet fruits like raisins. It smells so good! I could smell this beer for days! The dark chocolate smell in this beer is predominate, and in the finish a little bit of an alcohol bite. I dive in for my first taste and wow, just wow! This beer is so good! It was served a little cold but, as it warmed up, it got better and better. The taste is similar to the smell, oak, vanilla, dark chocolate, expresso roastiness, molasses and dark fruits. This beer is over the top! just big in every-way! It is complex and the flavors are just layered over each other. It is a bit on the sweeter side but it is not cloying. It finishes super smooth and is just amazing. The beer is lightly carbonated and very full bodied, this beer has some real substance to it. It is hard to give this beer a 5 on drinkability, even though I would kill to be able to drink this beer all the time, it is 19.5% and it is just so over the top and bold. Overall, this beer is just amazing and I am addicted, I went every chance I got to try this beer. I can't wait to crack open one of my bottles!

Photo of pepsican
3.38/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Thanks to Greg for the sample at johns. Much appreciated! Pours pitch black with a small tan head. Aroma is up front raisin, vanilla, figs, plums, and brown sugar. Lots of dark fruit along with chocolate are sitting in the background, and the alcohol is really prominent after a good amount of sniffing and swirling. The flavor, unfortunately, is a bit of a mess.

Up front this beer has a great bourbon/vanilla flavor, and quite a bit of chocolatey goodness. Molasses and toffee round out the good parts. Very rich. It all falls apart when the cloying sweetness hits you. All of the great notes of the beer get dominated by the under-attenuation, think amaretto sweetness and you are getting close. After a few sips I'm just overwhelmed. Not enough is going on to offset the cloying aspects of this beer; it doesn't try to hide it one bit. It also had a bit of over roasted coffee thrown in that I didn't pick up at all in the nose. I had a rough time getting through my pour and I think if I would have finished it my score would be lower. If ever a beer demanded to be drank in 4oz portions for maximum enjoyment, I'd say this is the one.

The finish is very viscous, almost exactly what you would expect it to be. Carbonation is very soft and works really well. It does have a decent bit of peppery alcohol bite, think tequilla. Being a big spirit drinker I'd certainly question the 19.5% claim on this one though, I'd peg it more in the 15-16% range. If they hit ~20, I'd be impressed with the lack of alcohol presence.

Overall this is a very nice imperial stout and I look forward to trying it again. I could see myself drinking this one in place of a nice port after a meal or when I have a craving for sweets.

Photo of Jwale73
4.51/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to Thirstybird for sharing and stevemcqueenjr for carrying it cross-country. Pours an inky black with no light penetration. A quarter inch mocha-colored head quickly dissipates into a swirl of foam and a tight band that coalesced around the perimeter of the glass. Incredible nose - sweet, vanilla, bourbon, malty, brown sugar and a little booze. Taste follows nose - this is an incredibly sweet and decadent beer I have to say. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied; not overly carbonated, but just a tad too much, such that it cuts the viscosity. This is definitely a beer to sip and savor; however, the abv is well-hidden, all things considering. A truly incredible experience - believe the hype.

Photo of rmseven4
4.7/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Have been lucky enough to have had this beer both on tap at The Bruery and from a fresh bottle the week it was released.

Pours pitch black with a thin layer of tan, almost brown head.

Great smells as soon as the glass gets within 3 feet of your nose, bourbon is very strong and mixes well with the chocolate, vanilla and molasses.

The thick nectar seems to want to grab hold of the side of the glass and not let go, when it does it almost appears to have stained the glass brown.

The taste is a full mix of bourbon, espresso coffee, molasses, dark fruit, vanilla, oak and roasted malts. While strong the bourbon does not overpower and works with the other flavors instead of competing or trying to cover them up. Alcohol, while evident, is not as strong as you would expect in a beer that is supposed to be 19.5%. A little on the sweet side and thus the reason for the lower taste and drinkability scores, more than 5 or 6 ounces of this would start to be too much for me.

Definitely will drink this beer again and look forward to taking one of my remaining bottles back to the East Coast to share with a couple of friends and family.

Photo of khiasmus
3.18/5  rDev -30.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Many, many thanks to HopHeadlouie for sending this to me... I'm saddened that it was not what I had hoped for.

A viscous black, liquified dark, nothing on top at all. Stains, not legs or lacing, remain on the sides, a glass of ink, black ink, careful it doesn't stain your clothes.
One whiff and you remember your childhood. You used to love sweets. Eat them all day. Pecan pie, Hershey's chocolate syrup, fudge, chocolate cake. These are what you smell, the aromas that you used to love. But now you are older. Now you also smell the alcoholic burn in it... you catch the hint, the hint of that soy-sauce-sweet-syrup, that called Triple Bock. No, really. Yes, really. A good dose of Triple Bock with the chocolate cake in the nose.
And the flavour, there again, reminds you... well, no sense in remembering, let's break out the ol' photo album, and there you are. Chocolate cake all over your face, your hair, your hands, chocolate icing, chocolate milk, chocolate fudge, chocolate brownies, and caramel. Milky Way, take a bite of alcoholic Milky Way. Alcoholic sweet, chocolatey, syrupy, nougatey, fudgey, Triple Bock.
That Hershey's syrup mouthfeel too, syrupy, sticky, creamy, immensely thick, almost no carbonation, and a lingering syrupy warmth.
This thing would be wonderful if you still loved to eat chocolate cake until your gut could no longer take it anymore. It's little but a chocolate fudge liqueur. Nothing RIS about this one. No roastiness, no balance, just tons and tons of chocolate syrup. Alcoholic, liquid chocolate cake.

Photo of Sandstone
5/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Black Tuesday. It exposes English for the failure of a language it is. No words capable of the profound expression needed.

The ancient Chinese have a symbol. Unpronounceable, but which I have always referred to as The Xa. The Xa is the very concept of inexpressibility. The Xa transcends language and evokes emotion, raw and true.

Black Tuesday is The Xa. A beer which has profoundly impacted my life. With but a single sip, all prior culinary experiences became dull and meaningless by comparison.

Appearance: Black. Impenetrable darkness. A thin brown head, the only sign of life beneath the murky depths.

Smell: Chocolate. Bourbon. Molasses. A delicate richness never before known to beer. Every inhalation is an orgasm of the senses.

Taste: Roasted malts, bourbon. Barrel aged complexity that is beyond the previous limits of my experience.

Mouthfeel: Thick and viscous. Brutal and abusive in many ways, but with the delicate touch of a passionate lover.

Drinkability: Unparalleled. One could drink this forever into the oblivion.

True joy escaped my face in the form of a single tear, rolling down the cheek, into the sublime concoction I was partaking of.

I was one with The Xa.

The pleasure, immeasurable, the pain unthinkable.

White Truffle. Black Caviar. Foie Gras. Even the forbidden Ortolan. They now meant less than nothing to me. They tasted foul and vile by comparison.

Food, I cannot eat. Drink, I cannot drink.

Every day, every minute, since my sip of Black Tuesday, I have been haunted by The Xa.

Help me, Patrick Rue.

Help. Me.

Photo of paco1029384756
4.75/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Pours black with a small dark tan head with good retention, and it is ridiculously cloying.

Scent of sweet dark fruit, maple syrup, chocolate, a hint of oak, some alcohol, and bourbon. Very sweet, and though the alcohol is noticeable, it is hardly overpowering.

Taste of strong chocolate, sweet maple syrup, bourbon, molasses, candi sugar, oak, and a hint of alcohol. Finishes with dry oak, vanilla and some alcohol. Incredible stuff, not at all suggestive of it's 19.5% ABV.

Mouthfeel is heavy bodied and oily with a small bite of carbonation. As expected, the mouthfeel is perfectly smooth and heavy, but not quite flat.

Photo of DmanGTR
4.4/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Very massive thank you to Richard for this bottle to be shared at our tasting.

A - Poured pitch black, no light shines through even when held up to the light. Creamy, tan head that retained as a thin cap and shortly dissipated. No lacing, but very nice considering it is 19.5%. (4.0)

S - Lots of bourbon. It dominated the aroma, although not too unbalanced. Light hints of blackberries and dark chocolate. Very malt forward. There seems to be many layers of complexity here that could have shown more colors. A touch is shown here and there. Bourbon is still quite prominent. But amazing. Like a well aged Bourbon County Stout. (4.0)

T - Wow, where to start? First off, there is a lovely rich fruitiness of an aged RIS. A touch of fig, but more so in the black currant department, molasses, and heavy roasted malts. Lots of chocolate and expresso bean. Bourbon is a huge part of the flavor but does not dominate like it does in the aroma. Fantastic balance for a huge beer, you can hardly taste any hotness from the alcohol. Finishes roasty and sweet, with much bourbon flavor. (4.5)

M - As huge of a beer it is, it is not cloyingly sweet nor is it sticky. Chewy, yes, I can nearly spread it on toast, but damn this drinks incredibly smooth. Not hot at all, just a hint of warmth after it trickles down your throat. Carbonation is very mild. It works for the huge character, just enough to bring everything together. (5.0)

D - A lovely sipper. A full bottle is a bit much at nearly 20% but split between three or four people, it can be enjoyed for hours in an evening. (4.5)

Notes - I treated this beer as any other beer to review. Honestly, I don't give a crap about how hyped up a beer is. A beer is a beer and if your tastebuds enjoy it, then great. If not, at least you gained experience. Personally, I thought this was an excellent beer, although I would have preferred slightly less bourbon in the nose. That was really the only thing that I could complain about. In terms of taste, I can definitely appreciate the subtleties of a year's worth of bourbon barrel aging. It is very much like a vintage Goose Island Bourbon County Stout. In fact, I think I enjoy the balance in GIBCS a touch more than BT. However, its velvety smoothness and lack of alcoholic hotness is what gave it its exceptional texture. Overall, I felt that this was an awesome experience. Thanks again, Richard.

Photo of KeefD
4.69/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

*This review was a fresh bottle of '09.

Big thanks go out to Mauerhan, one of the most generous and fair traders on this site, for hooking me up with this bottle. Had this last night, shared with friends, took a few notes.

Strange thing happened. As I cut into the wax around the cap, I heard a fizzing sound before I even popped the cap off. That's odd. Poured a dark brown color when viewed in the light, but was completely black in the glass, no head or lacing. Not sure why/how the appearance on this one has been garnering so many 5's, but I digress.

This beer smelled exceptional. Those who know me well know I love bourbon, and this is the best smelling bourbon barrel aged beer I've ever come across. So much wood and bourbon, followed by dark chocolate, graininess, figs, light vanilla, and port. Yep.. This smells amazing. The aroma was easily my favorite part of this beer.

Upon first sip, when it was still a little cold, it tasted much like port, with plenty of chocolate and bourbon. It's a very sweet, complex combination of figs, brown sugar, caramel, and chocolate. As it warms up, the bourbon really starts to come out, especially after a few swirls of the glass, along with some cocoa powder-like chocolate. To me, it literally tasted like a liquid bourbon ball. Outstanding!

The mouthfeel was really great on this beer, really thick, viscous, light carbonation. The only complaint here is that it nearly became cloyingly sweet, and left a little too much of a sugary coating in my mouth and on my lips.

Drinkability really is lower for me on this one. For 19%, the alcohol is well hidden on the tongue, but it does have a good warming as it goes down, and the sweetness/richness is a little much after awhile. The 8-9oz pour I had was just enough, I think. I couldn't see drinking much more than 10oz of this at a time.

Great brew. Glad I got to try this one. No further comments.

Thanks again, Topher!

Photo of nickd717
4.64/5  rDev +2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

My second review of the great Black Tuesday. This time out of a bottle. largadeer was kind enough to share this awesome rarity - thanks a lot, Chris!

A - Well, it's black. I was really expecting more of a light golden-straw color. Huge disappointment when I realized this was a -bal aged imperial stout rather than an American adjunct lager. Can't win 'em all I guess.

S - Aroma did not wow me as much as before. In fact, this is the one area that this beer fell short. To be frank (as in candid, not hot dog), Cigar City Hunahpus, Marshal Zhukov, and -bal aged 110k+OT, which I had before this, smelled considerably better. I mean it has nice chocolate, roast, bourbon, and vanilla, but I also got a bit of soy sauce that was a little reminiscent of Sam Adams Triple Bock. Don't get me wrong, it smelled better than average, but there are a lot better imperial stouts in this category out there.

T - Well, once again, it's amazing, and I've got to give it a 5 here. Rich chocolate, molasses, roasted malt, caramel, bourbon, vanilla, a little dark fruit - it's all in there. Lasts a long time and does not disappoint in the least. Not much booze at all, but the 19.5% does hit you later. Had about an ounce of a Black Tuesday/Utopias blend also and it was incredible.

M - Thick and viscous with medium-low carbonation, just the right level for this beer. Not syrupy or cloying like you'd think it might be. Booze is there, and you can sense that this is very strong, but not nearly as strong as you'd expect for the ABV.

D - Finished my glass incredibly quickly. Way, way too easy to drink. This was at the end of a large tasting, and the BT sent me over the edge. Still have a headache from it as I write this.

Photo of Gyle41386
3.43/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Big thanks to khiasmus for the opportunity to try this one. With it being held for such high ransom on the trading forum, I was worried I might not have a shot at this one.

Inpenetrable black pour. There's more light brown foam than I would have imagined, which retains well. Not a whole lot of lacing left on the glass, which doesn't surprise me.

The aroma is really, really sweet. Like your standard stout, with a couple of shots of bourbon and a packet of Nestle Quik dumped in. Or maybe if you poured Hershey's syrup into some spiked black coffee. Either way, you get the picture. It's an amped up imperial stout.

The flavor is...well, big. Lots of dark chocolate, molasses, vanilla, and bourbon. Again, it's what you expect from a monster barrel-aged imperial stout.

Unfortunately, there is a harsh boozy finish. I read so many reviews prior to drinking this beer that said how it tasted nothing like 19.5% and how well the alcohol was masked...this beer was hotter than the Dogfish Head Fort we had earlier.

Big, big body. Sticky texture. Obviously, not a very easy drinker. Definitely glad to try it, but it's not worth $30 to me, and it's certainly not worth trading away way more than it's worth.

Photo of miketd
2.95/5  rDev -35.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottle shared by Fiver29. Thanks John.

Pours pitch black with a decent brown head. Has the look of Motor oil, or a very thick milkshake. Aroma of sherry, chocolate, coffee and some booze. I don't get any barrel. Flavor is pretty much the same - chocolate, sherry and coffee - but it has an odd, twangy sour finish that wasn't appealing. The best thing about the beer was the body, nice and thick. Not very drinkable, but ok in small doses.

This is a very average beer, nothing special.

Photo of fiver29
3.83/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle pours pitch black with tan head. Aroma is amazing. I detect subtle notes of bourbon, slight oxidation, dark roast, coffee, chocoate, and dark grain. This has a really pronounced dark grain aroma that just dominates. If you have ever brewed with dark grains that is what it smells like. Those black grains just stand out the most for me in the nose. Dense and viscous mouthfeel. Flavor has a touch of alcohol, bourbon, coffee, grains, and finishes somewhat chocolate sweet with a slight grain astringency. The sweet chocolate and grain astringency finish knock this beer down a bit for me. I don't care for the sweetness or astringency. And that is what I'm left with as it finishes. It has all the layers of complexity that make it a remarkable if not one of the best beers on the planet. I just wish it finished better. Still a nice beer to try either way.

Photo of SparklePants
4.02/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks KeefD for sharing!

This beer looked almost just like any other imperial stout. In fact after having this beer last night I had a pout of the Darkness 09' and thought that had more head retention and lacing. Very dark and syrupy look to it.

A small swirl and then smell brought out a ton of the bourbon, a little overpowering to me. I could get more essence of the different flavors smelling than tasting it seemed.

This beer hides the almost 20% alcohol it holds pretty well. Small chocolate and vanilla flavors to it. As it warmed up the flavors were more brought out and so was the bourbon.

It deffinitly made my lips sticky, and almost felt like I had some coating my mouth. Pretty smooth, but Im saying that for a 20% beer.

I couldn't imagine drinking an entire bottle of this to myself and splitting it 3 ways I was close to buzzing! A sharing bottle indeed. Drinkability is just above what I would consider average.

Black Tuesday from The Bruery
100 out of 100 based on 3,242 ratings.