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Big Sound Scotch Ale - Bourbon Barrel Aged - Cigar City Brewing

Not Rated.
Big Sound Scotch Ale - Bourbon Barrel AgedBig Sound Scotch Ale - Bourbon Barrel Aged

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

350 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 350
Reviews: 68
rAvg: 4.36
pDev: 8.72%
Wants: 315
Gots: 94 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing visit their website
Florida, United States

Style | ABV
Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: cjgator3 on 06-16-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 350 | Reviews: 68 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of imperialking


4.25/5  rDev -2.5%

11-30-2011 05:06:24 | More by imperialking
Photo of bsuedekum


4/5  rDev -8.3%

11-26-2011 20:26:15 | More by bsuedekum
Photo of heyta


5/5  rDev +14.7%

11-26-2011 15:05:41 | More by heyta
Photo of seeswo


4.25/5  rDev -2.5%

11-24-2011 15:27:36 | More by seeswo
Photo of Dreadnaught33

District of Columbia

4.43/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Another variant shared by starrdogg, thanks Matt, really a treat.

A: Nice brown color with crimson highlights. Ok head that dies to a tan ring.

S: Tons of bourbon, it really screams out pina colada with the pineapple and coconut notes flying out of the glass. Barley any of the original scotch ale and grapenuts comes through, but theres a little smoke. Maple syrup as well. Very cool but a little bizarre!

T: Awesome taste thats very well balanced with the very nice vanilla oak and brown sugar to the base smoky savory malts. Sweeter, but I enjoy it. Reminds me a lot of Port Brewing Older Vis in the bourbon and kind of 'strong ale' like malt profile in the beer, which is a good thing.

M: Very nice and smooth, no heat. Great feel that I'm finding is a trademark of a lot of Cigar City beers.

Overall a nice beer and very unique.

Serving type: bottle

11-24-2011 01:53:16 | More by Dreadnaught33
Photo of ygtbsm94


3/5  rDev -31.2%

11-22-2011 18:38:18 | More by ygtbsm94
Photo of bob727


5/5  rDev +14.7%

11-21-2011 15:39:09 | More by bob727
Photo of Scrumtralecent


5/5  rDev +14.7%

11-20-2011 06:07:23 | More by Scrumtralecent
Photo of starrdogg

District of Columbia

4.75/5  rDev +8.9%

11-20-2011 05:10:10 | More by starrdogg
Photo of Dael5859


5/5  rDev +14.7%

11-19-2011 20:23:12 | More by Dael5859
Photo of Photekut


5/5  rDev +14.7%

11-16-2011 01:40:36 | More by Photekut
Photo of thewimperoo


4.25/5  rDev -2.5%

11-15-2011 18:35:42 | More by thewimperoo
Photo of alalvarez75

New York

5/5  rDev +14.7%

11-14-2011 16:12:03 | More by alalvarez75
Photo of ehammond1

4.4/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5


Thanks for sharing, womencantsail!

Dark murky brown throughout with a thin light brown head. This doesn't have a lot of visible carbonation, but does leaves some cling on the glass.

This a wonderfully aromatic beer. The bourbon barreling process has left this beer with an incredible vanilla, coconut, and oak aroma that is almost as good as any.

The flavor is no slacker either, and it follows in the same vein as the aroma. The bourbon character throughout this beer is a marvelous example of the transformation beer can possess after barreling. A low to moderate level of bitterness accompanies the mild bread and caramel notes mixed in with the bourbon.

Medium to thick bodied with low carbonation. Incredibly drinkable.

A wonderful treat, and I'm so glad at the opportunity to try this one.

Serving type: bottle

11-10-2011 21:22:24 | More by ehammond1
Photo of koopa

New Jersey

4.38/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2009 vintage bottle # 59 out of 246 received in a trade with a generous BA thanks!

Appearance: Pours a murky crimson stained brown with a 1 finger light brown to dirty khaki crown that displays moderate retention and lace.

Smell: Strong malt with minor earth notes and nice toffee accents.

Taste: Same as the nose but with a nice subtle bourbon addition.

Mouthfeel: Thick bodied with moderate carbonation.

Drinkability: Goes down fairly easy for the style.

Serving type: bottle

11-09-2011 01:54:56 | More by koopa
Photo of biggsbowler


4.43/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

BA Hunahpu release day!!! Just a great beer, Big Sound is one of my favorites from CCB and adding bourbon just makes it better. The nose is full of bourbon. The taste of caramel sweetness mixed with bourbon flows so beautifully in my mouth. This beer and a redheaded girl would be a great time!!!

Serving type: on-tap

10-07-2011 13:33:22 | More by biggsbowler
Photo of Tesilential


4.72/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Holy moly!

On tap 9/25/11, the day after BA Hunahpu and BA Big Sound releases.

When I received my snifter I was greeted by a delicious dark beer, looking more like a porter than a scotch or brown ale. I immediately sensed I was dealing with a serious beer.

I took a sniff and couldn't help but blurt out "oh my god the sweet sweet bourbon!" This smells like delicious bourbon at it's finest! My girlfriend and I took turns smelling this beer for a couple minutes until we dared taste it. One of the most delicious smelling beers I've ever had the pleasure of tasting. Note: If you don't like bourbon you probably won't like this beer, it is seriously influenced by the barrel aging process and I've never tasted such liquor character in a beer. This is the best BA beer I've had. It tastes as if they poured expensive whiskey into a scotch ale.

Bourbon was still very much a part of the taste, replacing the heavy alcohol taste I get in many commercial high gravity beers. I've never had the regular Big Sound, so I can't compare it to it's base beer, but suffice it to say this is one of the best beers I have enjoyed, Period. This beer has moutfeel for days and can easily be enjoyed in a small <4 oz serving, making this an excellent brew for tastings.

I spoke to several of the CCB staff, and they said it was 100% unanimous among them that the BA Big Sound line was the better beer than the BA Hunahpu. They absolutely recognize Hunahpu has the HUGE following among beer geeks, (as evidenced by their chaotic BA release yesterday), but still insist Big Sound is the tastier drink.

I am becoming a bigger fan of CCB every time I try a new beer. They have an excellent IPA but where they shine is malty beers. IMO they are a top 5 brewery for malt leaning beers and I'm ecstatic to live to close by. I'm also discovering more and more I appreciate the nuances in delicious malt beers than hop charged beers thanks to them. These are some of the most complex beers on earth without being sweet, cloying hop bombs.

Serving type: on-tap

09-26-2011 03:29:41 | More by Tesilential
Photo of olimpia84


4.15/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this on tap during the Hunahpu release event on Sept. 24, 2011. Served on a CCB snifter.

A: very dark brown and opaque body, small head that was less than one finger and disappeared eventually. No lacing.

S: strong coconut smell coupled with hints of cocoa and caramel and sweet malts as well.

T: it follows the nose fairly well with caramel and sweet flavors from cocoa and malts. It also has a liquory taste with hints of coconut and medicinal notes.

M: smooth, full bodied and medium carbonation. Very drinkable and a good job at disguising the alcohol level.

O: another quality offering from CCB, this is a smooth and drinkable strong beer that presents several qualities that stand out.l

Serving type: on-tap

09-25-2011 23:30:31 | More by olimpia84
Photo of mikesgroove

South Carolina

4.83/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

ich dark brown color coming forward right away. Nearly opaque with a small head of tan creeping up the sides throughout the session but eventually falling back down to earth. The aroma was wonderful with rich caramel and toffee notes that just exploded in the air. Hints of apricot and other light fruits bouncing around as well. Really the best flavor I could have imagined coming out of this one. Rich caramel and toffee flavors, hints of vanilla, pears and light tart flavors bouncing aorund. No alcohol at all, , it does not drink anywhere near this kind of strentght. Smooth, perfect carbonation with a drinkability that was off the charts. I just dont know what else I can say about this beer

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2011 02:02:24 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of ThreeWiseMen


4.28/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this in a trade with fogdog awhile back. Bottle 142 out of 246. Thanks a lot Kevin!

Poured into a Cigar City snifter.

Appearance: Not a whole lot of head off the pour. A thin, off-white halo sits atop a murky, dark brown body for the whole session. Spotty lace.

Smell: Bourbon, caramel, floral esters, and maybe a touch of anise (a friend suggested it, and now I can't not look for it). Very smooth, sweet, and mellow; sort of monotonal, but also enjoyable. Picks up a bit as it warms.

Taste: Caramel, cocoa, and beautiful bourbon. Rich and sweet at the onset; dry and floral in the finish. Smooth and harmonious; bourbon barrel-aged Scotch ales just make sense! As with the nose, the taste only gets better as it warms up.

Mouthfeel: Fine carbonation pairs well with the full body and peppery, alcoholic finish. Esters stick around deep into the aftertaste. Warm and soothing; this one's an excellent sipper.

Overall: While I wish this one was a bit more complex, it's very smooth. The main flavors meld together seamlessly. Mild, manageable alcoholic burn. Classy.

Serving type: bottle

04-17-2011 05:39:34 | More by ThreeWiseMen
Photo of TurdFurgison


4.28/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

drgonzo3705 brought this to a tasting in Akron(thanks Paul!). This was bottle 83/246 from 2009.

This poured a dark brown and nearly opaque color, noticeably murkier in the later pours. Very strong peat character in the nose, some sweet malts too, very nice.

It tastes primarily sweet, with a lasting smoky flavor that's really addictive. A hint of ethanol in there too, or it could be that this evokes a scotch whiskey memory from the peat.

Relatively thick bodied, this was a serious bruiser of a beer start to finish. Excellent.

Serving type: bottle

02-23-2011 23:53:34 | More by TurdFurgison
Photo of weeare138


4.22/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to josh for popping this one. Bottle 93/246...
Appears a brownish-red with a small, tan cap that quickly fades into a tiny collar. Spotty bits of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of cocoa, vanilla, booze, caramel, and toffee.
Taste is of the aromas with caramel coated apples, mild grapes, and ripe fruit pulling through.
Mouthfeel is chewy, medium bodied, boozy, with sticky, syrupy sweetness.

Serving type: bottle

02-07-2010 02:51:10 | More by weeare138
Photo of maximum12


4.33/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I never tire of thanking moose3285 for continuing to truck great brews northward. And now it's my birthday, so this is my designated brew for the night. Thanks Mike!

This is one I've particularly looked forward to since the base, Big Sound, is the best Scotch Ale I've ever had, & thinking of it in a barrel made my mouth water & my lobes quiver. Pours just like it's non-BA namesake, almost black, with red highlights along the edges. Smell is subtle, but in this case it's a compliment. Sweet malts & bourbon are born upwards by the air currents.

Barrel Aged Big Sound, you are always welcome in my house. The BA portion of the program is very well-executed, not too heavy, not too light, to paraphrase a fine Bud Light commercial of the moment. Beneath the bourbon is the base beer of sweet candy, just a pat of smokiness, & the vanilla that always seems to follow bourbon around.

Not much carbonation here, & that might be its only weakness, this is one big, bruising, heavy, alley-brawler of a beer. I have to come up for air after even a smallish sip. But it could beat me up & I'd still be happy.

My first taste of a barrel-aged Cigar City brew, & it's excellent. In all honesty, I prefer the non-BA version - but that was so good, it's like I'm complaining about the use of lighting in the Mona Lisa. Wonderful brew. If readily available, this & the non-BA version would be go-to beers in my fridge every night.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2010 03:17:07 | More by maximum12
Photo of gford217


4.18/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750mL bottle courtesy of a very, very generous Tampa BA, poured into a snifter.

Pours dark brown in the glass with some mahogany hues coming through around the edges. There is a very small tan head that recedes very quickly, leaving a small collar and a swirl of bubbles along the top.

Much like the regular version, I'm not overly impressed with the nose as it's fairly faint and mostly sweet caramel malts and brown sugar. The bourbon is present but definitely not overpowering.

The taste is markedly better than the aroma for me as the malts take on a more smoked peat character in addition to the caramel sweetness. There are dark fruits, raisins and figs, in the middle before the bourbon makes an appearance in the finish leaving a nice burn going down.

The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with soft carbonation and very smooth. Though the smoked peat lends a slight dryness to the finish, it's still a sweet, sugary feel on the palate.

This is a step up from the regular Big Sound for me as the bourbon brings an extra complexity to the taste without being the dominant component. Very nice.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2009 01:22:57 | More by gford217
Photo of tpd975


4.08/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Missed the release but thanks to the CCB boys for taking care of me! Bottle 75/246

A: Pours a very dark amber hue, more brown than red. Nice tall creamy tan head that rises to a full finger. Excellent retention with tons of thick sticky lace. CCB beers really are beautiful in the glass.

S: Wonderful aromas. Lots of toffee, brown sugar, loads of caramel malt. Lots of barrel as well. Old oak, vanilla, and hints of booze.

T: Pretty damn drinkable for a BA brew. Lots of malt sweetness. Toffee forward, brown sugar, and sweet molasses. Hints of apple and dark fruit in the middle. The finish is about the barrel. Not over the top at all, just subtle oak, vanilla, and a touch of booze which compliments the base beer nicely.

M: Medium in body, smooth mouthfeel.

D: Pretty good actually. Not the best barrel aged CCB brew, but the barrel did improve an already solid base brew!

Serving type: bottle

09-13-2009 18:09:13 | More by tpd975
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Big Sound Scotch Ale - Bourbon Barrel Aged from Cigar City Brewing
96 out of 100 based on 350 ratings.