Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine and select auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

Anderson Valley Wild Turkey Bourbon Barrel Stout - Anderson Valley Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anderson Valley Wild Turkey Bourbon Barrel StoutAnderson Valley Wild Turkey Bourbon Barrel Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

222 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 222
Hads: 1,419
Avg: 3.76
pDev: 33.24%
Wants: 59
Gots: 278 | FT: 10
Brewed by:
Anderson Valley Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Stout |  6.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: tempest on 10-27-2012

Aged for three months in Wild Turkey® Bourbon barrels, this luxurious stout has a deep ebony hue and a beautiful mahogany head. The woody, vanilla-like notes imparted by the barrels mingle with aromas of fresh baked bread, toffee, and espresso and envelop the rich chocolate and roasted barley flavors with a fine bourbon character.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 222 | Hads: 1,419
Photo of Wasatch
4.09/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz. Bomber

Poured into a chalice a very nice dark brown color, nice carbonaiton, with a nice small fizzy tan head, which leaves a HUGE oil slick in the middle of the glass, some nice sticky lacing as well. The nose is malty, with some very nice chocolate, coffee, and toffee notes. A little vanilla note also. The taste is slightly sweet, bitter, and malty. Lots of dark notes thrown in with some roastyness, a slight bourbon note. Medium body. Overall a very tasty brew, a nice stout with a bourbon note thrown in, glad to see it here in Utah, would definitely recommend.

 575 characters

Photo of Brenden
3.67/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer is a medium-dark brown color, fairly thick, with a bubbly tan lace that almost crowns at a finger and leaves decent spotting on the walls of the glass.
Malts are strong, laying down a firm base, and smooth bourbon is strong on the nose without being hot. There's a certain bittersweetness between the roast, cocoa, and notes of vanilla pulled from the wood.
There's more bourbon in the smell than in the taste, but it's unmistakably a factor; it offers a little more heat than flavor, though. It's surprisingly dry, no doubt lots of woody notes pulling out, with a bit of char, dark fruits, and some light vanilla notes into the finish.
The body thins out a little too much, and it carries from beginning to end. It's somewhat lacking the boldness and robustness or the body Americans especially are famous for. It's semi-dry, wood and alcohol playing off sweeter aspects.

 882 characters

Photo of srandycarter
3.73/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A - Vigorous pour gets fat light tan head, slowly reduces, leaving lots of cling lace. A little darker than cola.

S - Soy sauce, choc chip cookies, brownies come to mind.

T - Nice big malt center, coffee, the wood and some bourbon wrap around it.

M - Carb good, balance ok, but pretty darned thin.

D - Over all, pleasant enough. I won't go seek it again, but if it happened to be around, I would drink it again.

 415 characters

Photo of athomasPSU
3.59/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle poured into a snifter. Light brown head that fades quickly. Very light brown lacing sticks around throughout the entire glass.
Huge bourbon with hints of roasted coffee on the nose. Some oak and vanilla and slight booze comes through.
This brew is very thin and watery. It's just not thick enough for the bourbon.
It has a great taste. Plenty of bourbon and roasted coffee with some chocolate.
EDIT: This beer gets thicker as it warms up. Making it much better.

I really like the taste of this beer and it's aroma. It just's too thin for me and it just isn't as good as I expected because I normally love AVBC's stuff.

 626 characters

Photo of farrago
3.23/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Tops off past a finger of very dark brown foam, mix of all bubble sizes and simmers down to the surface quickly, weak lacing left behind. The liquid is a thick, impenetrable black, vague tint of yellow at the rims and surface, you can see a few tiny bubbles here and there. The bourbon comes through easily in the nose, caramel, vanilla and butter, light plum fruit with a vestige of prune but it mostly surprises you for the lack of anything happening, no real roastiness, no hops, just the sweet oak and some fruit and chocolate. Medium-bodied, creamy and soft, the carbonation is moderate and makes things even fluffier. Does have some tingle, maybe from the barrel toast yet still not close to full on roast/toast. Cola, vanilla, chocolate, at many times tastes like Dr. Pepper’s. The lack of body evident through the finish as it trails off, can’t say it is trying to end cleanly. The barrel treatment much more evident in the nose. You don’t get much fruitiness here, notch up of nuttiness. You keep waiting for it to kick in and it really never does.

 1,063 characters

Photo of ADZA
3.75/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a very dark brown almost black hue with a creamy head and lacing everywhere,the nose is mostly wild turkey with subtle hints of chocolate and coffee,the mouthfeel is medium bodied,moderately carbonated and warming with that turkey first on the forefront but to my satisfaction the ageing does not totally dominate and the base beer is allowed some time to shine with chocolate,coffee and oatmeal and right at the finish the base beer and barrel intertwine for a mix of hoppy bitterness with bourbon heat and overall it's a nice drop and the ageing adds another element that the base beer lacks cheers.

 607 characters

Photo of mfnmbvp
4.03/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle, with no apparent bottled on date present. Labeled simply as Anderson Valley Bourbon Barrel Stout. Malt beverage aged in Wild Turkey Bourbon barrels. I had this beer on tap earlier this year and I remember enjoying it quite a lot, so I'm excited to have it again.

Poured into a clear balloon snifter glass.

A - Pours a dark cola mahogany color; opaque in the glass. Three giant fluffy fingers of luscious creamy mocha colored head. Beautiful stringy scattered lace. Looks mouthwatering.

S - Smell is of that beautiful vanilla presence from the bourbon barrels, some oak wood, some cream, little bit of chocolate, burnt brown sugar, and a faint hint of dark fruit & nuttiness. Smell is fairly one-dimensional, but it hits it's mark.

T - Taste is wonderful also. Smooth creamy vanilla, earthy oak wood, mild unsweetened chocolate, ideal carbonation. Not a lot of booze heat, considering this beer's moderate 6.90% abv.

M - Feel is smooth creamy and silky. Feels a bit thin and watery for a bourbon barrel stout, but it works.

Overall, a delicious beer. Definitely scratches that bourbon barrel stout itch that I've been having lately. Not too outrageous or crazy, but a very solid, readily available barrel aged stout. Glad to see those used Wild Turkey barrels put to good use. I would drink this again and again. Recommended.

Anderson Valley Bourbon Barrel Stout ---4/5.

 1,392 characters

Photo of sweemzander
4.43/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

22oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

(A)- Pours practically pitch black in color with some subtle tan froth.

(S)- A great coffee roast to it with an excellent yet subtle barrel oak and vanilla character.

(T)- Really well balanced and smooth with mellow coffee and toffee flavors. Great barrel finish to it.

(M)- Very mellow and smooth. Extremely well balanced with a welcomed lower ABV, which helps this beer so much.

(O)- A superb stout with a welcomed lower ABV drinkability to it in a sea of big monster 15%+ stouts. I am actually a big fan of when the bourbon shows big in stouts, but the subtleties of this one are fantastic. Easily one of the better american stouts I have had over the years.

 702 characters

Photo of pkalix
4.6/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

super dark brown pour (of course!) with some darker tan topping and nice lacing when tilted.
chalky, earthy aroma typical of many stouts. the bourbon smell was stronger and sweeter coming off the bottle than from the glass.
lighter than most in this category, I get some sweet first, and some bitter at the finish. in the middle I get a lighter variation of the roasted malts, maybe some burnt chocolate. vanilla. very smooth. the more I taste this the more I like it. perhaps the lighter-than-most abv allows the smoother-than-most taste from this one. I have found most Anderson Valley brews to be very much above average and this one is a tad better than that. not world class, but excellent.

 696 characters

Photo of beertunes
3.44/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

Served in 12oz tulip. Poured a solid black with3/4 inch of tan head that had medium retention and lacing.

A slightly sweet malt scent was at the front of the aroma, with a bourbon scent that nicely added a counter-point. On the tongue, it was pretty much the same, perhaps the base beer was a bit too sweet, but an intelligent hand was used in the barreling/blending process, as the bourbon complemented the beer very nicely indeed.

The body was much thinner than I expect in the style, this felt more like a light Porter. Drinkability was excellent, my glass disappeared quickly, and I think there'll be another in my future. Overall, a pretty nice brew. Maybe not one that will please the "MOAR EXTREME NOW" crowd, but a thoroughly enjoyable brew. Worth trying.

 765 characters

Photo of Ri0
3.73/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

poured 22oz bottle into snifter

A - Very dark, I'll call it black, with a light tan 3 finger head. Retention is very good as a thin cap remains for the session. Fat webs of lacing all over the glass. Fantastic looking stout.

S - Typical stout aromas mixed with the faint notes of the barrel. Roasted malt, chocolate, touch of vanilla and bourbon. There is a bit of wood hidden in the back.

T - Somewhat subdued bourbon and wood. Roasted malts and chocolate with very faint vanilla. I get mostly wood on the finish. The taste is good, but not quite what I was hoping for.

M - Medium body with very good carbonation for the style considering it was barrel aged. Fairly smooth, but not quite silky. Finish is very much wood from the barrel.

O - I'm not sure the price of this, but I would benchmark it against Dragons Milk. If it is around $6 a bomber, then it is worth picking up, I wouldn't spend much more on it. Thank you Ken for the bottle.

 951 characters

Photo of maximum12
3.33/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

As a sucker for anything barrel-aged, I felt compulsed to pick this up when I saw it on the shelf across the river in Wisconsin. 22 oz. bottle split with my wife.

The pour is nearly as dark as the soul of a bad movie (Road House comes to mind right now, for some reason). Heady for a middleweight stout. Nose is lighter than the acting skills in Dirty Dancing; faint malt, not much else.

Wild Turkey Bourbon Barrel Stout (say that nine times fast) kills brain cells without a ton of benefit. Most of the beer is tied up in the distinctive Wild Turkey notes that cascade down the back of the throat & really stick around. Base beer brings roast, milkshake, touch of vanilla. Booziness on the end chips up the interest some. Not sure the base beer is big or thick enough to support the barrel, but hey.

The barrel is really dominant here, as the base beer is somewhat dazed & lost amist the Turkey. Interesting to taste so much of the barrel, though; pretty good beer.

 971 characters

Photo of wordemupg
3.94/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

650ml bomber poured into tulip 23/8/13

A 4 the darkest brown with a deep cola edge, loose thumbs width of mocha foam leaves a single thick ring of lace followed by some random patches

S chocolate, cold coffee, vanilla, charred wood, mild bourbon, a hint of over ripe plum, a touch of licorice and booze, smells solid

T more char and some smoke with unburnt wood that's mellow but hard to miss, burnt marshmallow, and the coffee has a darker roast,

M keep telling myself its a BBstout not imperial so the bodies not as thick as you would normally look for, tannins leave a little grit in the mouth but it's slightly sticky on the lips, cola and charred wood lingers on the finish

O lots going on without falling over, easy enough to drink and I don't feel like I just finished a meal

not the extreme complexity of some of the big BB monsters that we all know and love but plenty going on in something a lighter lighter, worth trying for sure

 950 characters

Photo of swingdjted
4.15/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I love it.

Appearance: 22 oz. bomber bottle. Right there on the store shelf, the subtle silhouette of the turkey called me in and sure enough, it says Wild Turkey barrels on the label. I've always liked Wild Turkey 101 and the Rare Breed version. The recognizable W.T. brand really set the standard high, which would make for a nearly unreasonable high expectation on the quality of the beer. The pour was very dark brown but not black. It creates a good head, not too much where you have to be super careful on the pour, but small enough that you need a glug or two to get some to appear. I used a crystal wide short (11-12 oz.) rocks glass, because that's what I would drink bourbon in. I was able to make a 3/4 inch medium to dark brown head on the pour easily.

Smell: Smells like stout with bourbon in it. One could elaborate with eloquent vocabulary and poetic word choices and form, but it smells like the description claims: stout with bourbon. Exactly as described.

Taste: Good. The bourbon doesn't hit hard at all. Good bourbon taste without the kick. The stout end of it is pretty tame too, but still a good taste. Most bourbon barrel stouts have a much higher alcohol content, but this is at 6.9, which while high for some styles, is very low for others like it. Extremely drinkable and non-threatening. A little acidic, but not enough to be a "con".

Mouthfeel: Much thinner and smoother than expected. Not very malty or heavy. You can sip or take slightly bigger average gulps, but still nowhere near light enough to chug comfortably. This would be a good beer for someone wanting to try a bourbon barrel stout for the first time.

Overall: I really liked this beer. It's good tasting, easy to drink, and mostly matches the description. It doesn't have to be assertive to be good; it's just a great beer even if you don't have the IBUs, ABV, and the heaviness to brag about. I'm not here to brag, I'm here to drink a good beer, and this really is a good beer. I finished wanting another, which is rare for a 22 oz. bottle; usually one 12 oz. is all I have in a night. I recommend!

 2,096 characters

Photo of superspak
3.8/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle into snifter; no bottle dating, but it a recent release. Pours fairly pitch black color with a 1 finger dense tan head with good retention, that reduces to a thin lace cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass. Aromas of dark chocolate, cocoa, roasted malt, caramel, oak, clove, toffee, toast, dark bread, vanilla, bourbon, and roasted earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of malt and barrel character; with good strength. Taste of chocolate, cocoa, roasted malt, caramel, toast, dark bread, toffee, light oak, light bourbon, vanilla, and roasted earthiness. Light roasted bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of chocolate, cocoa, roasted malt, caramel, toast, dark bread, toffee, light oak, light bourbon, vanilla, and roasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Nice balance and complexity of roasted/bready malts with a light barrel presence; and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a moderately creamy and smooth mouthfeel that is good. Alcohol is very well hidden with minimal warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a very good barrel aged stout. Nice balance and complexity of malt flavors with a light barrel presence; and very smooth to drink. I was looking for more barrel character in the taste; but otherwise a nicely enjoyable stout.

 1,369 characters

Photo of drpimento
4.02/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Excellent brew! Poured at a good temperature with a thick, foamy, tan head that settled after a bit and some lace. Color is an almost opaque, but clear, cherry tinted brown. Aroma is roast malt, cocoa, whiskey, vanilla, caramel, hint of molasses. Flavor's like nose, starts more like stout with a hint of whiskey, then the whiskey really comes out strong to a point that's perhaps a tad too much. Carbonic tang is up front followed immediately with malt sweet, then some bitter at the end. Body/carbonation are very good, tho the whiskey throws the balance a smidgen. Finish is like flavor, the whiskey makes it long. Probably only have this one bomber. Be a good one to share.

 677 characters

Photo of constantine_272
3.71/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: black with sticky beige foam. Low carbonation. Foam creates sticky speckled dots on the glass wall.

S: Strong on vanilla. Malty biscuit notes. Slightly sweet.

T: Surprisingly delicate. Starts off with strong vanilla with a diluted chocolate flavor. Light new oak nuances with nutmeg and allspice. Sweetness fades with a bit of licorice. Slight tanginess builds to the end finishing it dry. Good, but I thing it could benefit for just a slight hop addition for a little more crispness. It finishes a little tangy, but a little more hop (very little) would hammer it home.

M: Thick but balanced well by the mild tanginess. Finishes dry, again from the mild tanginess. Licorice flavor lingers a bit long, but acceptable considering the full body that comes with it.

O: Nice. Lots of flavor, and fairly smooth. Didn't pick up much bourbon here and heavy on the vanilla notes, but still quite tasty.

 901 characters

Photo of VincentFrey
4.31/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a New Boulevard tulip glass.

Appearance: It's pitch-black, and can't find much color around the edges in a number of lights. Oddly inviting! However the head is very thing, receding toward the edges with little retention.

Smell: Delightful notes of bourbon and vanilla, with the rolled oats and caramel following up. It's very good, but a bit more strength from the base beer would push it towards perfect.

Taste: Just terrific! I wasn't as much of a fan of Barney Flats as others, but this is just incredible. All the highpoints of a standard oatmeal stout, with none of the alcohol burn or "going too far" of some barrel aged stouts.

Mouthfeel: Very, very close to perfect. Full, rich body lingers everywhere, sticking to gums and even the lips. Just no intangible to hit perfect, but for a $6 bomber, incredible!

Overall: I really dig, and am very happy to see Anderson Flats in Maryland if this is what they're selling.

 959 characters

Photo of Offa
4.1/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is an excellent, characterful, yet highly drinkable stout.

Black, it has a medium dark tan head steadily shrinking to a foamy ring, wisps, some lace.

Aroma is caramelised ginger bread with brown sugar, hint of vanilla.

Taste is similar, with elements of caramelised ginger bread, hints of wood and vanilla, some dry dark toast in the finish. overall leaning slightly to sweet side with gentle nice warming element, a mild whiskeyish hint, very mild bitterness to help balance out. It's not super sweet, though, and is not very oily or heavy in body and feel.

 566 characters

Photo of sholland119
3.9/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours a deep brown with hints of ruby at the very bottom of the glass. A foamy thin tan head has plenty of retention.

S-Chocolaty, some hints of vanilla and surprisingly light malt. Was expecting some roast from the pour but not really getting any. Also seems like this is not as bug a beer as it looked like.

T-Chocolate, mildly sweet mixed with a solid but not overwhelming matliness. Pleasant though not terribly complex..

M-Light side of medium, moderate carbonation.

O-A tasty beverage.

 501 characters

Photo of ZachBDC
3.96/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Was waiting a long time to try this one. Pours jet black. There is definetly some nice bourbon oakey notes in the nose, not very over bearing though. Overall taste is what i excpeted an amped up version of anderson Valley's already awesome oatmeal stout. A fair ammount of vanilla, along with a nice oakey smoke flavors. Its a really chewey chunky oatmeal mouth texture to it which I really enjoy. Great to have a BA stout that won't beat you over the head with the ABV or break the bank!

 488 characters

Photo of Axnjxn
3.94/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bomber into a shaker, no apparent bottling date.

pours a dark brown with an inch thick beige head. smell is of slight bourbon, not overwhelming. Taste is very smooth, you get the bourbon upfront but it isnt too much, and you also taste the chocolate and cocoa too on the back. very easy drinking, a bit lighter in bodied than youd expect from a bourbon stout.

overall nothing remarkable but its very good nonetheless. you wont be disappointed in this one but you probably wont actively seek it out in again either.

 517 characters

Photo of zachary80
3.57/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bomber. $11.50. Poured into a Globe.

Pours a very nice darker beige head, excellent retention, good lacing. Black body, brown with a lot of light.

Aroma is fairly mild. Light sweetness. A let down how faint it is.

Flavor is very good - lots of vanilla, bourbon itself is somewhat muted.

Mouthfeel is on the thin side.

If you think of this as a single stout that has been barrel-aged, I would say that the underlying beer is a little weak still. The barrel aging really helps it become more interesting. I would never be able to pick out that it was specifically Wild Turkey though.

 588 characters

Photo of Dave1999
3.59/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours pitch black with a nice foamy tan coloured head.

The smell is sweet bourbon, a little weak.

The taste is bitter malts, slightly sweet from the bourbon. The flavour is muted and doesn't really pack the flavour I'd expect from a bourbon barreled stout. Tastes like it is watered down, maybe like bourbon with a couple of melted ice cubes in it.

The mouthfeel is smooth with low carbonation, but slightly watery.

This beer is drinkable but not really all that good. I'd say it's a just above average stout but with so many great bourbon barreled beers out there, this seems shitty in comparison. Wouldn't recommend, disappointing for the price.

 651 characters

Photo of russpowell
3.23/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours an effervescent mahogany with 2 fingers of caramel colored head. Good head retention, decent lacing

S: Faint bourbon & raisin notes, figgyness

T: Dark fruit, carob, dryness, faint boozeyness & leafy hops up front. Raisins, prunes, faint coffee notes, leafy hops & dryness as this warms

MF: Light body, assertive carbonation, stays thin, but does smooth out a bit once warm

Not enough malt backbone to make this work, compared to their Oatmeal stout, this is a joke. Easily the worst beer from Anderson Valley I've ever had. Have these guys been taken over by corporate whores?

Sub-par, taste like a watered down stout with a splash of cheap bourbon hastily poured in

 678 characters

Anderson Valley Wild Turkey Bourbon Barrel Stout from Anderson Valley Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 222 ratings.