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Smoking Wood Bourbon Barrel Aged | The Bruery

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Smoking Wood Bourbon Barrel AgedSmoking Wood Bourbon Barrel Aged

Brewed by:
The Bruery
California, United States | website

Style: Smoked Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 13.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
2014 Vintage is 14% ABV

Added by UCLABrewN84 on 03-19-2012

User Reviews
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Reviews: 107 | Ratings: 604
Photo of Dusten2015
4.77/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

2014 bottle

L: Dark, but not pitch black, nice thick head about a finger tall, khaki colored which dissipated quickly.

S:Fantastic , figs, raisins, woody/oaky, dates, slight vanilla.

T: Fantastic, almost exactly like it smelled, and just so damn smooth. i imagine it mellowed out over the 2 years, which may have led to the smoothness.

F:Velvety, slightly oily, mouth coating, but quick to disperse.

O:I wish i had more bottles of this, and a fresh one to compare. This beer was fantastic and i hope to find more in the future.

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Photo of Catracho5
4.19/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750 ml bottle poured into a tulip glass

A: Pours black with a tan, full, creamy head, some head retention after about 5 minutes, some slight lacing, low carbonation, looks pretty good.

A: Bourbon, chocolate, picking some rye spiciness, I'm not getting any smoke at all, alcohol is coming through pretty strong.

T: Smoke is on the flavor, up front bourbon, chocolate, rye, smoke, lots of heat from the alcohol, very balanced and easy drinking, way too easy for 13% ABV.

M: Medium bodied with a smooth, creamy mouthfeel, very drinkable for 13% ABV.

O: Another solid beer from The Bruery, depth, complexity, and drinkability in a 13% ABV beer is outstanding, despite its drinkability there is still some heat coming through, really enjoyed it.

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Photo of scottfrie
4.04/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle into tulip. Bottled 5/19/14.

A:Pours a very dark woody brown, near black, with a finger of dark chocolate head that quickly fizzed away into a thin collar.
S: Smoke comes through strongly on the nose alongside the bourbon. I get hints of spicy rye, leather, tobacco, sticky caramel, musty oxidization, and a touch of dark chocolate and vanilla bean. Smoke is campfire-like as opposed to char or peat.
T: Similar to the nose with integrated and fairly smooth flavors of wood smoke, sweet and lightly boozy bourbon, caramel, dark chocolate, vanilla, and a touch of leather. Flavors are rich and potent, and the bourbon has a boozy edge to it. Rye spice in the finish, smoke and bourbon mix and linger long as the swallow.
M: Thick body but not as rich and full as a stout would be. Full, sticky, and slightly sharp mouthfeel. Bourbon isn't necessarily warming, and there is a ton of bourbon flavor, but there is a booziness to the beer that is still rather potent despite this bottles little bit of age. Carbonation isn't as soft or as smooth as I would have liked, and it creates a little bit of a sharp quality when mixed with the booze.
O: A really great combination of flavors. Rich and potent, but fairly smooth and integrated. Faint oxidization, but I'd probably prefer that over the booze bomb this must of been fresh. Overall, really good and no reason not to drink now.

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Photo of rypkr
4.42/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Huge want. Thanks @reefer_Bob

Preface by I'm a huge bb aged as well as smoked beer fan...

A - heavy pour into a snifter poured a syrups dark chocolate with thin head.

S - holy shit. All bourbon. Faint smoke. Faint dark fruit maltiness.

T - vanilla. Sugar. Alcohol. Potent smoke. Tobacco. Cream.

Seriously wow. For once a want that fully lived up to my hopes. This is every bit the cream of the crop for not just a smoked beer but even a bourbon barrel aged beer (across many styles).

M - this is the whole milk of beer. Nothing is lacking. Rock, viscous, filling and above all chewy. Perfect.

O - I need to look into acquiring this more easily as I'd drink it regularly if I didn't have to trade across the country for it.

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Photo of Tonyjenlasc
4.64/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Look - Pitch black, opaque
Smell - Bourbon, wood, oak, smoke, vanilla
Taste - Follows the nose beautifully. Bourbon, vanilla, caramel, oak, wood, chocolate, roast
Feel - Nice slick creamy mouthfeel, easy drinking, smooth

Overall - Super enjoyable! An excellent beer.

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Photo of larryarms847
3.53/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours jet black and motor oil thick with a surprisingly thick but airy head of dark brown foam.

Molasses, caramel, chocolate, vanilla, oak, smoke, and bourbon.

Flavor similar to aroma, but everything that really popped in the aroma described above seems dulled down and unfortunately one-dimensional. Then the smoke hits you and oh God the aftertaste is just terrible.

Heavy-bodied, medium carbonation, thick, metallic, burnt.

The flavor seems nice at first but the metallic aftertaste stays with you and it's truly awful.

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Photo of tbryan5
4.43/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pitch black and oily. Dark brown head that doesn't last.
S- Booze, wood, bourbon, meat
T- Meaty. Smoky, chocolate. Perfect bourbon
M- Low carbonation. Slick
D- A truly outstanding beer (once again) from The Bruery.

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Photo of LloydDobler
4.43/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml poured into large wine goblet. Btl date 5/19/14

My first smoked beer. What a way to start the UFC fight night! Here weeeee go! Pours nice and dark. A thin brown cap fades fast and leaves me drinking a glass of ink. Spice from charred wood and rye compliment the nose here that is mainly sweet bourbon. Taste is chocolate and bourbon. The smokiness isn't here at all. Wait a sec... And there it is! Smoke almost rolls over the tongue in the lingering aftertaste. Very strange, but in a cool way. Feel is full and this has nice carbonation too. Overall better than the reviews and ratings might have you believe.

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Photo of SLeffler27
4.27/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Pours thick dark brown just shy of black (SRM 34-36). The B-United teku glass contains a dense, fine, dark walnut head that reaches half an inch and is creamy. The head quickly fades, leaving fine lace and allowing legs to develop.

The oak aroma is powerful with bourbon playing a major role as well. Alcohol fumes carry vanilla and molasses while the smoke is more of charred wood. Also discernible is pumpernickel bread. Warmth unfortunately brings out a Band-Aid solvency.

The flavor opens with chocolate, bourbon, and molasses cookie. The bittersweet balance is surprisingly well maintained with a hint of sourness. Other characteristics include charred wood and charred malt. Smoke is only an accent in the flavor. The finish is long and drawn out with sweet bourbon and mild bitterness. Warmth continues to develop dark fruits, predominantly prunes.

This one is incredibly dry, almost chalky. Alcohol is prominent as expected, but not hot. A soft, velvety texture and light carbonation accentuate the full, almost dense body.

This is a great sipping beer which I enjoyed while watching U.S. Open Golf on a cold, sunny afternoon.

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Photo of manfromanotherplace
4.34/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look is a very dark brown, smell is very woody with strong hints of smoke and bourbon. Taste is very smokey up front but thats balanced out by a sweetness and slow bourbon burn on the backside, the alcohol content is obvious with the heat at the end if each sip, but somehow this beer isnt overpowering in any way, g or a smoked beer its very well balanced. Bruery dont seem to make bad beers, this is another excellent one.

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Photo of Roguer
4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very dark brew, clear at the edges, with a brown head with OK retention.

Boozy bourbon and chocolate aroma. Sweet cane sugar comes to mind. Typical big Bruery beer.

Smooth on the palate; lots of wood and bourbon, with tons of smoked wood (not meaty) on the back-end. Dry Baker's chocolate and brown sugar. A touch sour.

A little hot, but not overly so, especially for the ABV. Smooth and sticky; a real sipper.

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Photo of Phigg1102
4.71/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Nothing wrong with this beer. Me likey, me likey, me likey long time.. Sorry I don't know what got into me. Pitch black pour with a very thin mocha cap. Coffee and chocolate and of course bourbon in the aroma. Bourbon in the taste, in the best possible non-overpowering way. Great balance for a BA, more should try and obtain this type of balance. Thick pleasant mouthfeel that carries all the great roasty toasty flavors.

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Photo of Stevedore
3.76/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

On tap at Brasserie V in Madison, Wisconsin. 5oz served in a minisnifter.

Similar to the coffee and vanilla variant, pours a dark brown body with a half finger offwhite head. Some lacing, minimal retention. Smells of hefty bourbon, a bit of char, sweet brown sugar and molasses. On the cleaner side, more simple but it comes together better. Flavour is an intense combination of bourbon, char, molasses, caramel. It's a very sweet beer, and you can appreciate how it all comes together. Still, I found it to be a bit too sweet for me. Mouthfeel is medium-fuller bodied, lower carbonation, slightly syrupy consistency, a big beer with a fair bit of heat to it. Better than the coffee and vanilla variant, but still too sweet and intense for me. The char doesn't come anywhere near cutting the sweetness of the beer.

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Photo of gcasher
4.45/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Wow! 1st off this is a $30 beer in a bomber bottle. It tastes like it was aged in a single malt scotch barrel from Islay or was brewed with smoked peet. The mouthfeel is fantastic in its heavy depth. Definitely worth a try.

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Photo of floridadrift
4.42/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A BCS counter-part this year with no rye character. Just a light layer of smoke and bourbon barrels but they've perfected this recipt to its finish. Its like BCS but much bigger in alcohol content and just as smooth. A slow sipper on a cold night. Pitch black in body with somewhat of a quickly dissipated head after it warms up. Lots of caramel, vanilla, some smoke that blends with the barrel and a roast-oak finish. Really nice.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.55/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a Bruery tulip glass. Vintage 2014.

Deep walnut brown, nearly black, not an inch of hue out of this body color coming out of this at all. Head manages an espresso brown color, slightly dark and mocha, only a finger, but keeps well. Dissolves and leave a nice simple tan 2 milimeter collar while settling, non oily top and a whisp of bubbles.

Fantastic aroma. Mild sensing smoked malts, hints of campfire like wood, and mild roast. Deep dark ganache and thick like chocolate qualities, deep woody oak notes almost sensing tree sap quality and stickyness. Excellent balanced and tame and wonderfully in control. Real inviting.

This is not what I expected on first sip. Deep rich sweetness. Thick notes of grape and grappa like flavors but with far thicker dark malt. This is sweet like a solid brandy, but manages more classic roast to keep it in check. Thick roast coating, if there could be said such a thing for the mouthfeel. Mild sensing embers of smoke trickle on the finish, almost as if the fire hits with little pockets of pepper and ash. Chocolate dark and smoked brandy qualities, low phenolic, just a touch of medicinal though creeping out but luckily very tiny. Dark cocoa powder hits over time, mixing wonderfully with the ashen like finish and flavors on the end wonderfully. Not boozy hot at all which is shocking, until it passes the aftertaste and hits in the stomach very slowly and totally unaware.

This is pretty impressive, but it's also quite sweet but tolerable. If the alcohol and sugars could be dialed down this would be extremely impressive.

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Photo of stortore
4.33/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750 ml into a snifter, bottled 5/13/14.

Pours dark, opaque, thick looking. One finger head, lots of foamy cling. Smell brings rye, bourbon, roasted malts, a little smoke. Also a bit of brown sugar, hint of coffee. Taste seemed to bring a little more bourbon and roasted malts, a little less rye. More smoke than the nose as it warmed, molasses. light chocolate. Only slightly boozy. Some bitterness on the back end. Tastes damn good. Good body, although a touch thinner than expected. Nicely carbonated, a tongue coater.

This is a really well blended and flavorful beer, that really hits my sweet spot. Very enjoyable. Would recommend to anyone.

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Photo of PicoPapa
4.14/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750mL bottle. 2014 Vintage. Pours a pitch black color with a medium brown head. The aroma is lots of smoke, bitter dark chocolate and espresso. Bourbon notes as well as some black licorice. Slight campfire smell to it. The taste is lots of Bourbon and vanilla upfront followed by some espresso. The smoke comes out more towards the finish but it is lighter than the aroma indicated. Earthy finish but with some sweet caramel and vanilla as well as the Bourbon. Boozey as expected. Heavy mouthfeel. Bordering on overly sweet, this is still a really good beer.

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Photo of Domvan
4.03/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Definitely an interesting brew, not overly smokey and has a nice sweetness that balances it out. I've never been a huge smoked beer fan though, so this just didn't do it for me, but was definitely a nice representation in the style, they hid the ABV well as usual too.

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Photo of James_Michaud91
4.46/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Thick, black, darkness pours out of the bottle with a beautiful milk chocolate head that settles pretty quickly to stillness.

The smell is great, fresh roasted coffee beans, sweet toffee, smokey malt (not over the top smokey) and cocoa.

This is not a 'shy' beer by any means. Huge, sticky malts balanced perfectly by savory smokey notes. Bourbon barrell provides a nice tannic backbone and vanilla/bourbon component to the beer.

For 14% ABV this is incredibly smooth and delicious. What a great beer to have with breakfast!

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Photo of pagriley
4.07/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

750 into 14oz snifter
L - Pours oily black with a 1/2 inch dark tan head after vigorous center pour
S - Bitter-sweet chocolate and dying embers from a bonfire. Some booze lurking in the background and a slightly sharp acidic tone - like over-roasted coffee
T - Burnt caramel, slight nuttiness, with very well integrated bourbon notes, but a fair bit of alcohol heat. Smoke and sticky sweetness on the finish with a slight twang of the subtlest acidity / sourness.
F - Smooth and creamy with fine velvety carb

Overall a very interesting beer. First impression was to look up where I could buy more, but as I get further into the glass (having a 12 oz pour) it is getting a bit tiring Very enjoyable, but like many Bruery beers, something to be shared with 2-3 people.

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Photo of Slatetank
3.68/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

thanks to Tim for sharing 2014 bottle of this at our annual Stout tasting enjoyed in a stout glass chilled.

The color is black with opaque clarity dense looking with quick dropping medium tan head. The smell has a custard-like sweet and vanilla infused quality from the barrel with smoke heavy in the nose and medium high alcohol in the smell with light woody accent and slight phenolic odor. The feel is good but very thick with low carbonation and almost syrupy with lots of alcohol and rich vanilla bourbon in the sweet layered malt body with creamy and smokey drying finish.

The taste is decent with woody and ashy smoke dominant flavor with malt sweetness and roasted malt mixed in with booze taste of bourbon and light tannin with some spice in the taste but the phenolic smoke character becomes a little daunting with caramel and light hint of bitterness of highly kilned malt warmth of alcohol is strong as it finishes. Overall not bad, but not one to enjoy alone -glad I shared this bomber 4 ways it has heavy alcohol and smoke which together is tough to stomach a lot of.

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Photo of BullDoza
4.47/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle dated 5/13/14.

A: It's Dark; black. Mocha, 1/4 finger head which, faded in to a thin outer ring quickly. Some small bubbles. Not much carbonation, as expected, but more than anticipated. Nice alcohol legs.

S: Bourbon. Slight oak. Sweet, as is typical of Bruery stouts. Faint vanilla notes. Dark chocolate mingle with dark fruit. Licorice. The smoke starts to come out more as it warms, but still not as much as I had hoped. Rye character does become more apparent.

T: Smoked character of the malt more noticeable in the taste, but still lacking. Vanilla. Raisin. Dark chocolate offers up a subtle bitterness. There is some roast, and the finish recalls a mild pipe tobacco. Licorice on the very end.

M: Fine. I wouldn't call it full, but definitely thinner than I'd prefer. I wish it coated the palate with more chewiness.

O: I wish the "smoked" character was a little more. The Rye spice is lost on me. Overall, a very good bourbon barrel porter. I have to say that I enjoyed the Rye Barrel version of this quite a bit more; I didn't anticipate that. The smoke came through much better in it than here. Not necessarily a knock on this beer, as it is very good. If you're choosing between the two, my nod goes to the Rye Whiskey version.

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Photo of gshak
4.49/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A very well made beer, a shame that it will no longer be available. Anyhoo...
A - Has that big beer look - 0 carbonation, 0 head..just sits there wallowing in its self-glory of being a 14% badass sumabitch
S - Has that big beer smell - no shit, this stuff is BBA - bourbon notes right off the bottle cap...roasty, toasty, smokey and giving me the woody.
T - Has that big beer taste - Vanilla, wood, bourbon, coffee-like roast, warm toasted bread, and whiskey. Oh yes, like someone dropped a shot of whiskey in the concoction and then another...just for good measure. This baby burns!
M - Feels oily and light and that is only due to the amount of whiskey this beer has picked up from the barrels. The base beer I am sure is probably about as thick and gooey as they come...
O - I won't even pretend like I know how to improve upon this beer. I'm hovering around 4.5 on this one...think I'll just go with that. Need to go hunt if there are any more bottles lying around somewhere....

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Photo of beerthulhu
4.18/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Dark viscose pour, inky black in the vessel, with a dark mocha one finger standing head. Micro-effervesce moves at a good pace along the inner walls.

S: Boozy dark fruit, burnt wood, campfire minerality and soothing bitterness. Beautiful wiff of smoky whiskey-rye and anise.

T: Smoky campfire soot, big whiskey-rye influence, peppery spiced jack daniels glow with soft charcoal filtering notes. Soothing flavor of anise, scorched barrel wood, vanilla and dry caramel. Whiskey soaked dark fruit and anise that finishes up with a whiskey soaked campfire soot. Very smooth and polised, the booziness is a few points lower then advertised, feeling more at home like a 10-11% then a 13.3%, some sweet burnt chocolate and smoked hop cones rounds things out.

M: Full bodied, silky textured, milky depth with a beautiful dark boozy bitterness.

O: Overall a beautiful whiskey soaked campfire minearlity and HUGE smokiness, with a burnt chocolate sweetness and boozy dark fruit nature. Boozy, beautiful sipper perfect for that campfire setting. Big smoked nature, more so then even Aecht Schlenkerlar, big alcohol content probabley best shared with a friend. The huge smoked malt and rye combination makes for a beautiful spicy combination. You can never go to big with the smoke beers imho, there's been to many i've had that were dismal and almost non-apparent. Go big or go home. $20 bomber well worth the experience. Shame its retired.

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Smoking Wood Bourbon Barrel Aged from The Bruery
91 out of 100 based on 107 ratings.