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Hunahpu's Imperial Stout - California Brandy Barrel Aged - Cigar City Brewing

Not Rated.
Hunahpu's Imperial Stout - California Brandy Barrel AgedHunahpu's Imperial Stout - California Brandy Barrel Aged

Educational use only; do not reuse.

56 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 56
Hads: 582
Avg: 4.49
pDev: 8.24%
Wants: 544
Gots: 91 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing visit their website
Florida, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: MasterSki on 05-18-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 56 | Hads: 582
Photo of corby112
4.72/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Pitch black and completely opaque with a two finger, pillowy dark mocha head that very slowly settles into a thick, lasting cap/ring. Great retention, taking a while to settle with large splotches of soapy lacing clinging to the glass on the way down. Dark oily legs coat the glass.

There's a prominent barrel presence in the nose but thankfully it doesn't completely obliterate the characteristics of the base beer. Slight charred oak/wood and sweet and spicy brandy along with vanilla and a strong toasted coconut presence. Excellent brandy character in the nose. Not sweet like the apple brandy, but more of a spicy booziness yet doesn't smell just like fusel alcohol. Underneath, the elements of the base beer are still present. Subtle roast with robust dark malt notes. Hints of coffee and bitter dark chocolate along with oatmeal, smoke and toffee. Some vanilla bean but not sure if that's from the barrel or hunah. Also, quite a bit of cinnamon and chili after it warms. Complex, inviting nose with great barrel character that's not overly boozy.

The mouthfeel of this beer is perfect and I can't image how it could be improved. Thick and chewy luscious body that's not oily or slick. Feels like a boozy chocolate shake with chilies and cinnamon. Probably best mouthfeel of any beer I've ever had. Again, there's a really strong barrel presence but it's perfectly integrated into the awesomeness of Hunahpu. Subtle dry oak wih a touch of char along with silky vanilla bean, cinnamon, marshmallow and toasted coconut. The brandy and barrel flavors really add another dimension to the luscious, silky chocolate and robust, smokey malts while the strong cinnamon and chili presence compliments the spirit perfectly. Deceptively drinkable with prominent alcohol/spirit flavor but only has slight heat in the finish. Another incredible beer from CCB and probably the best Hunahpu variant yet.

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Photo of stakem
4.34/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml yellow waxed bottle poured into a matching CCB Hunahpu snifter. The brew appears black in color with a dark brown head that fades leaving patchy lace.

This smells roasty with coffee, somewhat nutty and with a mild vinous barrel sweetness blending to vanilla, oak, coconut and earth with a bit of solvent feel with deeper whiffs.

This tastes faintly vinous with dark fruitiness then coffee, milk chocolate and cinnamon bark. The dark fruitiness comes across like plum/raison/dates and has a contrasting mild spicy warmth. Some coffee/espresso bitterness, char and mild neutral oak. There is seemingly slightly more of a raw pepper flavor to this iteration than the others ive tried. Black licorice is noted in the aftertaste.

This is fullbodied and moderate to lightly carbonated. An awesome, enjoyable sipper that id certainly seek out again.

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Photo of rodmanfor3
4.76/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

L: Dark with minimal head

S: Very interesting. It changes with each swirl, starting with cinnamon and spice, then apples and peppers, boozy brandy, then back to spice again.

T: Wow. Awesome in every way. A burst of cinnamon spice , then dark fruit, followed by chocolate and roasted malt, and a beautifully integrated brandy barrel.

M: Far more thin than regular Hunahpu. A bit strange, actually.

O: This is as good as it gets when it comes to barrel aged spiced stouts. Definitely in the top three of greatest stout flavors ever.

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Photo of linnymtu
4.75/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Not initially impressed at 45deg but as it warmed to 55ish the vanilla started to push through the coffee and became very well rounded on the taste and the nose. I'd say this was only a tad behind DBH overall.

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Photo of thereal_adam
4.42/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Obvious that time is starting to take its toll on this. I never had this fresh, only with age, but have had regular Huna and DB Huna both fresh, and just going off that the flavors here have blended together so nothing really stands out in its own. Still really good but don't go out of your way for it.

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Photo of dar482
4.81/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

The aroma hits of fruity brandy, cinnamon spice, fudge, peppers.

The flavor is a bit less smooth than the aroma. It hits of a chunky chocolate bar, cinnamon candy, some brandy sweetness, a touch of alcohol towards the end, a balancing of bitterness of coffee and cacao. The spice is subdued with mostly pepper flavor coming through.

Up next to DBH, this was lesser of the two, but still phenomenal. It is closer to the base than DBH.

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Photo of mlhyatt
4.84/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had at huna day. Amazing. Had it back to back with double barrel huna and this rivals DBH. Delivers exceptionally in every aspect. BA huna continues to top my list of stouts.

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Photo of maximum12
4.45/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks, love, & kisses to moose3285 for this bottles, which I cuddled & rubbed up against before I popped it open. Split reluctantly (man, I hope she doesn’t read this) with my lovely wife. Happy fucking birthday to me!

The pour is black, modicum of carbonation. It smells like Heidi Klum’s nakedness (with all due respect to Heidi, she’s just bloody gorgeous). Brandy, that Cigar City patented roast, but the Huna seems to be subsumed in the barrel. Still. Yeah.

Hunahpu’s – Brandy Barrel Aged girad gdagag gnbad. Huna on brandy. Could I get this on tap? In my house? Perhaps coming out of the master bathroom faucet? I could brush my teeth with it, that would be cool. The taste of Huna comes on strong, cinnamon, chocolate, white pepper, warm chile, sharp & hard roasts. The brandy comes into the middle & begins to sand off the harsh Huna edges; the brandy is subtle, woody. Yes, I could drink more of this. But I shouldn’t. Because I hate crawling up the stairs.

Yes, I like this, & I’m beginning to lose my power to type, so excellent beer. Begat.

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Photo of indurTheB
4.19/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Did not like this as much as the other Hunahpu variants, and I know it's a favorite of some. I think the bottle that I had was not taken care of very well by my buddy who opened it. I was hit in the face by the chilis and that is abnormal (for me) for Huna. Overall a world class beer, but doesn't hang with even the regular Huna.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.91/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served alongside Hunahpu's 2014.

The beer appears dark brown, near black, with a thin, oily beige collar. The aroma brings typical Hunahpu's quality: cinnamon, chilis, roast, chocolate. The aroma of the standard Hunahpu's is a bit more forward and edgy. Chili heat, booze, chocolate. Delicious. A bit smoother than the standard version, but perhaps lacking the aggressive onslaught of flavor found in the original. Splitting hairs. This is world class.

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Photo of drmcleod10
4.65/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Bottle shared among friends and poured into a mini-snifter
I think I got one of the good bottles that are still left out there

A - Dark as night with a minimal mocha foam head. Pours very viscous and thick. This was poured at around 55 degrees and was allowed to warm up quickly using the mini snifter. Very very dark pour with not much carbonation

S - Smell is of brandy, chocolate, roasty coffee bitterness, with hints of cinnamon but not much heat. This smelled really good we all agreed.

T - Taste is more of chocolate fudge in your face with hints of cinnamon on the back-end that pairs with some vanilla and brandy notes. People say this is a shell of it's former self, but this was just as good as 2014 reg hunahpu

M - Thick, chewy, creamy and smooth. Cigar city never disappoints on this aspect

O - Overall, better than 2014 Hunahpu, but it doesn't stack up to DB Huna. I thought this was still excellent and might be worth seeking out again seeing as how the value has dropped pretty significantly

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Photo of jivex5k
3.58/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

This beer has fallen off. Had it last month with a good friend, it's nothing but Brandy now.
In fact we all preferred a 2012 Black Tuesday over this beer. It's got an awesome aroma if you like Brandy, I do, but the taste itself is just too damn harsh. Compared to when these were first release this beer is a pale ghost of it's former greatness.

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Photo of SHerninko
4.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

PBW-2014, Resurrection Ale House (very small, understaffed to have Hunah on tap, got in line, begged for 15 min for a glass, got one!!! It kicked in about 20 min.)

Appearance-classic big stout, dark, some big tan head and lacing, some carbonation that dissipates.

Smell-very nice with all the oaky, chocolate, coffee, cinnamon & sweet from the brandy barrel. As it warmed it smelled like a cinnamon Danish fresh from a bakery. Mmmmm

Taste--another slight layer on top of classic Hunahpu (one of my all time faves). Base stout is wonderful, as it warms and changes you get more pronounced tastes from the brandy, the chocolate and the slight evening out bite of the chilies.

Mouthfeel--not too thick, but not thin--just right really. Coats the tongue before, during and hangs on after the sip.

Overall--better than original ?? A bit different nuance on the classic, one of the best in the world (to me) barrel-aged/flavored stout. Cigar City---you ARE the reigning champions.

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Photo of BarrytheBear
4.02/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle shared with Kyle and courtesy of Don if memory serves....thank you!

Black, oily, and lacy...looks the part

As an overall comparison between regular Huna and AB, this falls somewhere in the middle. Nowhere near as rich, luxurious, and special as AB, yet also not as peppery cloyingly sweet as regular. The barrel cloak much of the cinnamon and the pepper remains muted. Brandy provides a sweet blanket which masks much of the cutting aspects of the base while providing a different edge.

A good, but not great, beer. Never a huge fan of the base and while appreciative of the chance would pass on the price to be paid. A bottle split two ways becomes a bit of a chore....

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Photo of jlindros
4.49/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was another big on my wants list, thanks to HanksBeard (reddit), shared at the CCB bottle share night.

pitch black color, stains the glass, long legs, no real head,

Nose awesome dark malt stout, choc, cocoa nibs, very mild chili note, big dark choc, vanilla, coffee, little nutty and roast, little brandy like fruity barrel note.

Taste is phenomenal, dark creamy melting choc, cocoa, buttery coconut oak, fruity brandy notes and little vanilla barrel, little earthy hop, mild peppery spicy note, so much melting cocoa, etc. Finish is more vanilla, barrel, long spicy pepper but not overpowering, little vanilla barrel note, mild fruity.

Mouth is fuller bod, creamy lush, thick, decent carb, mild warming booze and mild pepper.

Overall great, very good but just wish the brandy came through a bit more, it's hard to get through the huge awesome base beer.

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Photo of rudzud
4.41/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to JLindros for sharing.

A - Poured into a Kate the Great tulip a nice oily black with a thin mocha halo.

S - Aromas of coconut, cinnamon, vanilla, brandy, delicious.

T - Taste is just like the nose, coconut, cinnamon, vanilla, brandy, chocolate, light malts and smoke. Super tasty, really drinkable.

M - Mouthfeel is smooth, nice drinking, alcohol hidden well.

O - Overall this beer was much better than ba abraxas. Delicious.

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Photo of RCM505
4.62/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Thanks Axic10 for opening this for my engagement. Poured into a 2012 Huna Day snifter

Appearance: A decadent opaque deep espresso brown with one finger of mocha head that eventually dissipates into a spotty ring. Very nice retention here. Nice dark coating on the glass reminiscent of the base beer

Aroma: Cinnamon and cocao dominant with light brandy sweetness; in no way overbearing.

Taste: Dark chocolate and roasted malts; brandy sweetness really brings out the vanilla and other base beer ingredients. Although unlike in the nose I do not detect any cinnamon. Lots of dry oaky goodness in the finish; charred oak. This is a very complex beer.

Mouthfeel: Thick and chewy with low to moderate carbonation and a very dry finish

Overall: Excellent. What you would expect from a Huna variant. Very complex flavor profile really brought out by the brandy

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Photo of jegross2
4.33/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Reviewing the California Brandy Barrel Aged Hunahpu's Imperial Stout from Cigar City Brewing out of Tampa, Florida.

Score: 93

2013 vintage bottle served in a Hunahpu's Day 2014 taster glass and enjoyed on 03/25/14.

Appearance: Pours that typical black bodied Hunahpu's color with a thin layer of espresso colored head that settles to a ring around the glass. Okay lacing, average retention -- less so than the Double Barrel Hunahpu's. Solid oily legs. 4/5

Smell: Brandy, chocolate and light peppers. Fresher (six-plus months ago), in some bottles of this beer we sampled, the pepper and spiced characters were more robust on the nose. Alas, at least in this bottle, with just under a year of age on it, the spiciness and spiced qualities are very muted on the nose. A little bit of cinnamon and some tobacco beyond the brandy/chocolate, oak too. 4/5

Taste: The spiciness factor is substantially greater on the palate than it was in the nose -- especially side-by-side with the Double Barrel Hunahpu's. Pepper spiciness, milk chocolate, vanilla and a hint of roast on the palate. A bit of dark fruit character towards the back half too. A kiss of cinnamon, which is not nearly as pronounced as it was in the 2013 vintage Hunahpu's or the Double Barrel Hunahpu's. The spiciness of the brew last throughout the taste and lingers a bit past the swallow (along with the milk chocolate flavor) with a nice tingle sensation from the pepper heat on the front-center of the tongue. There is a very mild underlying sweetness present. The brandy aging is quite muted relative to the nose. Everything here mixes nicely. 4.5/5

Mouthfeel: Full bodied, spot on carbonation. Has a good balance with a slight sweetness. Slightly salivating mouthfeel, with a little bit of pepper liveliness. 4.75/5

Overall: A really nice barrel aged treatment of Hunahpu's that is put to shame by Double Barrel Hunahpu's side-by-side, though the comparison is not entirely fair since the California Brandy version is nearly a year aged at this point. I think this beer was better fresher, but it has held up well. There have been numerous reports of bottle variation with this beer, but the last three I have consumed had a nice degree of spiciness -- even with nearly a year of age. Although this brew is less complex and appetizingly flavorful than the Double Barrel Hunahpu's (in fairness, so many beers are), it is nonetheless pretty delicious in its own right. It is just not as tasty as what it takes to land one at this point.

Cost: $25 for a 750 ml bottle.

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Photo of pmarlowe
4.4/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2013 vintage. Tulip glass.

A: Pours a viscous, motor oil black with a thin film of foamy, dark brown head. A few dots of lacing and average retention.

S: A wonderful mix of cinnamon, brandy (which imparts some bright red fruit), roast, vanilla bean and oak. Loads of delicious spice are the dominant aromas here.

T: Red fruit and brandy, some vanilla, with a bit of sweet red pepper spice, coffee/roast, and mouthwatering dark cocoa at the end. Slight residual sweetness. The brandy and stout flavors don’t *quite* meld together as well as they could, though that’s not surprising for a wine-barrel stout. Just a touch of alcohol is evident.

M: Velvety medium body and light carbonation.

O: Great stuff, an improvement over regular Huna. Highly drinkable given that this is a bigger BA stout. Flavors don’t meld together as well as they probably could, but excellent nonetheless.

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Photo of timc100
4.77/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Pours like a CCB stout - pitch black oil/melted brownie with a burnt mocha head, very minimal - some lacing sticks around - stains the glass brown when swirling in the glass. Not as dark as MZ but beautiful menacing stout none-the-less.

Aroma of muted Hunahpu spices, rich chocolate, and brandy. All integrated very beautifully - as it warms chili, cinnamon, and vanilla come through. Not a very aromatic beer, but very nice.

Tastes astounding - incredibly vibrant, rich, decadent, smooth, sticky, slick. The brandy adds a great element to the base beer with sweet fruits and boozy apple, some heat as well. The chocolate explodes as it does in Huna and MZ, smooth vanilla and some spices. Just excellent.

Outstanding beer - not necessarily better than Huna or Zhukov, just another fantastic take on a great beer. Highly recommended.

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Photo of Chico1985
4.67/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Woah! Whale. This and/or the Baird apple brandy version have been long-time wants of mine. Thanx, as always, to Cam for sharing during another epic Stoutfest.

Typical Hunahpu's appearance. Thick and oily black pour, dark brown head, decent retention, legs on the glass.

The smell is absurdly decadent and interesting. Tons of fudgy chocolate desserts, granny smith apples, brandy, truffles, some dark fruits and roast. Light spiciness and vanilla presence. Awesome and potent, didn't want to stop sniffin' this one.

Taste, wow. Apple brandy and chili spice are definitely upped in the profile, still tons of chocolate vanilla dessert madness. Less roasty than the scent and the original Hunahpu's, but there is just enough of it to balance out the sweetness. Lingering spice in the aftertaste.

A little less hefty than the regular version but otherwise similar, oily texture with lowish carbonation. Brandy is prevalent but not much for booze.

Enlightening beer for me. Unique, complex, crazy stout - rich chocolate fudge, apple brandy, chili spice?? Quite drinkable somehow too. Very awesome.

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Photo of cbutova
4.53/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks Sonny for the great brews you always send me. It was only appropriate to open this at Stoutfest III, CHEERS!

A- Poured to seven glasses with a superbly thick, pitch black motor oily body. A dark mocha brown head forms to about a finger with pretty good retention. Falls to a foamy, frothy ring after a few moments and lacing is spotty.

S- Holy brandy batman! Instantly recognize the barrels in comparison to the regular Hunahpu's. The brandy brings on a barrage of dark fruits and apples, like woah. The brandy doesn't overshadow but really puts one of the biggest stout bases to rest. Dark fudge truffle chocolate and intense roast malts beneath the fruit.

T- Follows the nose with the brandy aspect in a nice way. I've had a decent amount of brandy in my time but this one seems to blend in quite well with the Hunahpu's base. Bright dark fruits and apples swirl into the fudgey, dark cocoa and milk chocolate base malts. Lingering aftertaste of pure truffle madness, I would think I just ate a big fruit truffle. Man, brandy really shines, did I mention that? Slight pepper spiciness after many sips and some cinnamon with warmth.

MF- Massively thick, what I remember from both Hunahpu's and Zhukov (duh). Oily beast coats the palate with a nice moderate carbonation that really allows the fruit to shine on the palate. No alcohol heat for me, hidden almost insanely so.

The first really put me aback but it grew on me with warmth and time. I really enjoy the bright brandy character we got in this bottle (I have heard it varies quite a bit) as it turns it all into a dessert truffle more than a beer. Tons of melted chocolate and brandy deliciousness.

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Photo of GrapesofWrath
4/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Consumed alongside Amplitude and DB Hunahpu's- poured into a CCB snifter

Pours black with cascades of tan bubbles and a thick mocha head.

Smell is reminiscent of standard Hunahpu's with some toasted oak.

Taste falls kinda flat with a great base stout, yet muddied spice character and no detectable brandy.

Mouthfeel is heavy and syrupy.

Overall, great stout, but could use some refining.

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Photo of homebrew311
4.64/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours a thick and viscous black with minimal head. Oily appearance and a dark coating left on the glass. The nose starts with heavy dark chocolate followed by bright notes of cinnamon. The brandy adds some sweetness and seems to accentuate the cinnamon and vanilla notes. The taste is sweet up front with darkish chocolate and deep brandy notes which linger throughout. Notes of syrup, honey, vanilla, and wood come through in addition to the pepper and chocolate from the base beer. Mouthfeel is super heavy with light carbonation. Overall, fantastic beer with tons of flavor.

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Photo of gueuzedreg
4.23/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

I would honestly rather have a reg Huna

A- motor oil, very little carbonation, no lacing.

S- Muted form of Huna. I get some chocolate. The vanilla aroma has been torn off from this Brandy aging. Smells pretty good, but not reg Huna good.

T- Muted Huna again. Very little vanilla, not sure how much good the brandy aging did. I had a friend who is Catador who told me to not bother with trying to get this bottle, and he was right. I would rather have traded this for two Hunas.

M- No carbonation, the mouthfeel is actually made way thinner from the barrel aging.

O- I see a lot of people trying to trade for this bottle. I don't see why.

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Hunahpu's Imperial Stout - California Brandy Barrel Aged from Cigar City Brewing
97 out of 100 based on 56 ratings.