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Kuhnhenn Bourbon Barrel Fourth Dementia - Kuhnhenn Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Kuhnhenn Bourbon Barrel Fourth DementiaKuhnhenn Bourbon Barrel Fourth Dementia

Educational use only; do not reuse.

395 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 395
Hads: 1,800
Avg: 4.5
pDev: 19.11%
Wants: 1,678
Gots: 446 | FT: 38
Brewed by:
Kuhnhenn Brewing Company
Michigan, United States | website

Style | ABV
Old Ale | 13.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: alexgash on 12-14-2006

This is our 4th Dementia Olde Ale that has been bourbon barrel aged. This ale has an intense sweet caramel malt flavor and aroma that develops into a toffee/toasted marsh mellow like character.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 395 | Hads: 1,800
Photo of abraxel
4.83/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - A dark, rich, coppery brown. Awesome color, but no head to speak of.

S - mmm... sweet bourbony vanilla caramel toffee delicious. No hint of alcohol to speak of. One of the very best-smelling beers I've ever had.

T - mmm... buttery vanilla caramel bourbon toffee sweet amazing. The flavor caresses my tongue and lingers like a lover's embrace. A touch of alcohol on the finish, like a teasing pinch as she departs.

M - Smooth, decadent, and rich. No carbonation. I'm looking for criticisms, and it might be just a bit thinner than ideal. Still really really good.

Overall, this is an amazing beer. Super awesomely amazing. The cats' pajamas. The wasps' nipples.

It's good.

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Photo of hopsbreath
4.53/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Buffs9 (edit: also got a bottle in the mail from steelersx the day after posting this review) for hooking me up with a four pack of this beast. 2010 batch poured into a pair of Portsmouth snifters and shared with TulipSnifter.

A: Mahogany, good clarity, flat as a pancake. Forget legs, this has waves! 5/5

S: Big wood soaked in peppery bourbon, vanilla, and a touch of pie spice make this a keeper. 4.5/5

T: The bourbon is strong with this one. The oaky barrel notes are bold and spicy. Milky Way candy bars, cherry cordials, and some vanilla keep this flavor profile decadent and tilted toward the super sweet. 4.5/5

M: Thick, viscous, and a real dessert beer. That alcohol really is quite tongue numbing. 4.5/5

O: This is such a rich beer. If I'm looking for a fault it's that there is some rustic character to add a counter-point to the sweetness. That's a reach though. This is phenomenal. 4.5/5

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Photo of xpimptastikx
4.57/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2010 vintage. A big thanks to the traders who sent me this.

A - Pours a caramel color with a few bubbles, my expectations instantly drop.

S - Molasses, bourbon, vanilla, oak.

T - Like a tootsie roll in a shot of bourbon. Chocolate, vanilla, molasses, and oak. It's decadent and hard to see how it could get better.

M/D - The lack of carbonation is perfect. I thought it would be hard to finish a bottle, but the second it warmed up I couldn't stop sipping it. A great barrel aged old ale, probably the best out there consider the price and availably of it.

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Photo of cavedave
4.67/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Consumed 5-21-11, as the rapture was supposed to take place, but didn't (but did!).

Pours a thick and cloudy brown, topped briefly by a light skim, then a bare cap, and barely a ring. A swirl leaves oily sheen on my snifter.

Alcohol greets my nose, carrying dark caramel, wonderful barrel notes of oak, bourbon, and vanilla, a touch of tannic and herbal, a few even lighter aromas I can't identify but which give a marvelous complexity.

Good God Amighty!! I am so glad the world is not ending as I drink this, I have three more of these in the cellar! Forget the usual clinical deconstruction of attributes normal reviewing style uses. All the aromas come together as flavors to make one of the most staggeringly delicious beers this fine beer lover ever has tasted, or likely will again. Words are inadequate here, let me add only that, as a homebrewer, I hope someday to approach the skill level required to make a beer this supremely delicious!

Highly viscous, yet somehow creamy and easy drinking, low carb. that adds just enough zing to propel the flavors into the pleasure centers of the brain, and a finish that destroys reason and defies reality.

Overall this is one of the best beers I have ever tried, and second only to Alpine Great in the high Alcohol barrel aged type of styles I especially enjoy.

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Photo of monitorpop
4.83/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle purchased at brewery in April.

A- No head at all. Almost thought it went flat. Slightly transparent copper red. 

S- Light sweet bourbon.

T- Sweet vanilla, boozy bourbon, no bitter hops.

M- Smooth, almost no carbonation with alcohol burn finish.

O: One of my favorite beers...

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Photo of CashMoneyVagrant
4.29/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

-2010 vintage

Poured vigorously into my glass and got almost no head to speak of. A deep, dark burgundy almost brown color. Boozy nose. Vanilla bean, bourbon and charred wood at first. Aromas of raisins, fruitcake and butterscotch. Makes me think of pecan pie, chocolate cake batter or browned butter. Warm mayple syrup and brown sugar come to mind as well.

Sweet upfront in the palate, with little to no carbonation. Some stickyness on the lips, not too boozy. I taste rye bread, charred wood almost a peaty smokeyness. Lots of butterscotch, browned butter and toffee, caramel notes. Reminds me of amaretto and hazelnut liquor or coffee creamers. The bourbon and vanilla is well balanced. It does become flat rather quickly though making it a little thin in the mouth. There's a dessert-like quality to the brew.
Walnut or banana bread, with almonds coated in brown sugar and toasted.

Warming, mayple syrup, and burnt toffee feel in the finish.

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Photo of biga7346
4.5/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Absolutley flat, little to no carbonation or head or lacing. A shimmering kind of burgundy to maroon, dark chocolate looking tone.

N - Rich boozy almost vinous notes, vanilla bean, overwhelmingly toasty and bready w/ dark roasted malt, faint suggestion of fresh pineapple, some medicinal/astringent-like.

T/M - Over the top vanilla bean and toffee-like flavors dominate this beer up front, and then the finish leaves you with a nice drying, fig like aftertaste. When you fist sip and get a big sugary rush up front, you start to think "Holy Shit, here we go!" but then the finish levels out with oaky tannin crispness. I was very surprised by the balancing act this beer pulls off. More notes of dark chocolate, maple syrup, bacon grease, a nice savory presence of white pepper to clove-like, and a scotch kind of dryness about it.

D - A total sipper, the alcohol is masked much better than the regualr 4D, this beer was made to be aged in oak. It's a great combination.

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Photo of fastpass17
4.14/5  rDev -8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 12oz Brown bottle

A: Deep brown, murky, very little head, carbonation is there but ever so slight.

S: The nose one this beer is very intense, port, oak, vanilla, and nutmeg. There are some notes of cream sherry that become apparent after letting the drink warm.

T: Bourbon, vanilla, and cream start this drink, a heavy malt presence comes midway, and the finish on this beer is very clean for such a big beer.

M,O: There beer really comes into its self when it warms up to near room temperature. When I first opened this beer it was far too cold and it did the beer no justice, let it warm and this beer comes into its self.

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Photo of starrdogg
4.54/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2010 Batch, big thanks to JohnB87 for the trade.

A: Pours a hazy dark caramel-y brown with almost no head

S: Smells of bourbon primarily, but also smells a bit candy sweet with hints of vanilla and oak, incredible aroma

T: Taste is bourbon primarily but has a deliciously sweet caramel/vanilla flavor with hints of oakiness in the background. The base beer's raisininess comes through a bit as well. There's a small amount of heat in the finish.

M: It's medium-bodied and a bit sticky without a ton of carbonation, but it actually suits the beer pretty well.

O: This is a damn good beer that will only get better with age, which might help take some of the heat off of it. It belongs up there with the upper echelon of bourbon barrel barleywines (even though it calls itself an Old Ale).

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Photo of chadhops
4.89/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Experienced this beer by surprise at the Cleveland International Beerfest. Word of mouth traveled that if you ask....it will be poured! The Kuhnhenn stand was way off from the other Michigan breweries...like the a bad kid put in a corner. The stand itself looked a little goofy. I got to admit I passed it twice and didn't think of trying anything. Then I got word of the 4th Dimentia....

This beer was the BEST beer at the beerfest! The taste has so much going on its hard to separate them. Second best to the taste of this beer was the 5 minutes I spent smelling my empty glass.

Now Kuhnhenn's Brewering Co. is on my map. May even be worth the drive.

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Photo of Dubber55
4.34/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

2010 batch

Pours a murky dark amber with some red highlights. After an aggressive pour, a few bubbles form and then dissipate. A little lacing on the glass. I smell lots of raisins, oak, vanilla, booze, bourbon, leather and figs. The taste reminds me of an English Barleywine and follows the smell exactly with the addition of marshmallow and coconut. Very minimal carbonation. The body of this beer is medium and kind of syrupy. An excellent beer to sip on after a meal. With some age, it will get even better. Definitely one of the best old ales/barleywines I have ever had.

Edit---i was wrong. I had a 2010 bottle that I aged and the beer really went downhill. Seems as though its best to drink this fresh

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Photo of Dreadnaught33
4.57/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks greatly to starrdogg for opening this last night. You're the man Matt. 2010 vintage.

A: Really syrupy look with thick crimson tinged muddy brown being the main hue of the body of the beer. No head or lacing the speak of, though I wasn't expecting any in this style. Nice.

S: Huge excellent complex bourbon barrel hits first and under that you get an amazing aroma of dark fruits, vanilla bean, cinnamon, alcohol heat/sweetness, and malt I can only describe as "cellar molasses/olde ale" malt. Excellent.

T: The smell is characterized in the taste with additions of brown sugar, barley cereal, ginger, oak bourbon, and definitely maple syrup. A great taste, with a little age this is going to be an easy five with the alcohol heat tamed a little.

M: As mentioned above, the alcohol heat detracts slightly but also gives the drinker the impression of drinking bourbon or port, which ain't bad at all. Very smooth thick feel thats great.

O: An excellent barrel aged barleywine/old ale, probably my favorite to date. I will be looking to trade for this.

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Photo of TheDudeRules
4.7/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Generously hooked up in a trade from Scoot1969. Thank you sir.

This is my second time having this beer. First time it was late in a tasting and my penmanship was poor so sadly no notes. This time though with sobriety intact a proper review.

As most my reviews I pour the liquid into my trusty Darkness Snifter. A real muddy brown. No head whatsoever, and you guessed it, no lacing. There is a tiny white ring that circumferences the glass. A nice little contrast to the muddy brown. In the smell aspect I pick up lots of chocolate malt and bourbon. Like a kiss from bakers chocolate for my nose. It's intoxicating. Wow. There is a deep bourbon and chocolate love affair going on here. Just the slightest touch of sweet dark fruit, a little raisin I would say. Nice and sweet though. Not a lot of carbonation here. It is exactly what this beer calls for though. I think more would take away from the steamy love scene in my mouth. I can feel the boozy bite but damn it feels so good.

Very impressed. In fact I really dig it. Worthy of every praise.

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Photo of maximum12
4.32/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks, as usual, to beerisheaven for one more gem crowding my beer fridge. I will have you thank, my friend, when my liver begins to fail! And I mean that in a positive way.

Cap pops with a satisfying hiss; there was a little sticky on the neck, but I never could figure out where it came from, & thankfully it wasn't this bottle. All but the final 1/4 ounce goes into the sturdy, unbranded goblet, a liquid flow of flaky rust. The smell stirs me; classic old ale with brown sugar, toffee, & singular malts mixed with vanilla & bourbon of the most nose-pleasing varietal. Oooooh. This is going to be good, isn't it?

I'll confess; I wasn't wild about regular 4D, & it might be that I had an off bottle. This I like. A testing sip turns into three quick mouthfuls. The bourbon is hot & strong in this one, spreading warmth throughout my upper chest cavity; this might be good for curing a cold. Vanilla covers the tongue & weaves itself into a theme of sweet-on-sweet. Toffee & caramel bathe in a drawn tub of alcohol warmth. Slices of dark fruit, corn syrup, & leather may or may not be imagined.

This is like sipping fine Elko, MN maple syrup. Virtually no carbonation, still & flat. But man, is it good, This is one of those Kuhnhenn beers that makes it worth getting through their catalog; excellent beer, only a breeze below the nose-in-the-air echelon of elite barrel-aged beers. Maybe. Somebody ought to send me another so I can make sure I didn't miss anything.

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Photo of pmlondrigan
4.22/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nearly flat, but that's expected. Opaque and light brown I watch as carbonation escapes the surface of this beer. Complex aroma, woody barrel, bourbon and brandy, booze is prominant, some nice leathery quality and hints of vanilla and chocolate. A big mouthful of bourbon, smokey notes, leather and ash; oak is there too. Chocolate, vanilla and booze too.
Sticky and thick, oily, just perfect. A little hot but that is excusable at such a high abv. Beers like this grow my like for this style more and more. A really great sipper, nothing could be better about this beer.

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Photo of BCGabbo
4.85/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Big thanks to Romulux for the hook up on this one. 1st official review despite a year on the site.

Appearance: Dark brown almost plum color. Little to no head at all. Damn, this sucker looks good.

Smell: Raisins covered in caramel with a side bourbon served on an oak bed. Exceptional smell. Ready to dive in.

Taste: The taste is beyond smooth. 13.5% you say?! Wow, that's very well hidden. The bourbon is more and more noticeable as I continue to drink, but its a welcomed addition. The complexity is outstanding.

Mouthfeel: Smooth as gravy. Again, half way through the bourbon starts to reveal itself a bit more, but it makes the mouthfeel even more smooth.

Overall: Yum sandwich. This goes down as the best old ale I 've ever had and easily one of the top 10 beers I've ever tasted. The smoothness is jaw dropping and the taste is outstanding. The more I had of the bottle, the more I enjoyed and truly savored this treat.

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Photo of n2185
4.14/5  rDev -8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours murky brown with little head that recedes into nothing with no lacing.

S: caramel, vanilla, oak, bourbon, molasses, and sherry. Interesting aroma.

T: very similar to the aroma--lots of caramelized vanilla, oak, bourbon, and sherry. Quite good.

M: thick body with low carbonation, this beer is a bit oily feeling but nice and not too sweet.

O: a very good beer. Not extremely complex, but avoids being too sweet.

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Photo of Knapp85
4.59/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Damn this was awesome, the brewers father had opened a bottle of this for a friend and myself to try at the brewery when we were there. Thanks to him for a much appreciated sample of this gem! The beer poured out as a murky dark brown color with a little tan head on it. The smell was fantastic on this beer, rich and roasted aromas with sweet vanilla bourbon spewing from it. The taste is wonderfully blended with the complexity of the old ale with the elements of the barrel aged bourbon. The mouthfeel is thick and oily, nearly perfect. Such a good brew but really pricy!

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.39/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle split and poured into a Duvel tulip.
13.5% ABV, 2010, Serve at 45-55 F

Thanks to Sweemzander for breaking out this awesome old ale!

A - Dark, dark brown in color, it almost looks opaque despite being clear. Even a tall pour can't coax a head from this brew. So skim on the surface, just tiny bubbles are left residing along the glass' edge.

S - Warm alcohol envelops the strong malty nose rich with sweet caramel and toast. Dense bready notes and dark fruit esters hide behind the smooth but boozy bourbon and oak smell. Heavy and foreboding but mysteriously inviting.

T - Bold and complex, heavy malt supports the boozy alcohol and wood flavor. Notes of molasses, brown sugar, dark fruit esters, and dirt in the background.

M - Smooth and full-bodied, 4D is incredibly warm finishing with a retro-nasal heat finish. So tasty and smooth!

O - One awesome brew with solid flavor but little heat (for the percent anyway). Definitely best split a few ways but very good none-the-less.

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Photo of Torgo
4.87/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Tyler (big thanks!!) Clear dark brown pour, almost no carbonation and wonderful aroma of boozy caramel, sea salt and chocolate. Flavor is also silky caramel, boozy toast, nuts and finished pleasantly boozy and warming on the aftertaste. Every flavor in this beer melded extremely well with one another, just outstanding!

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Photo of Puddintane
4.67/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This rating is from the tap at Jackie O's. Was really happy to see this was made again and even happier to have a chance to have it on tap. Never thought this would live up to the first batch from a few years ago, I am glad I was wrong. The appearance on draft wasn't much to write home about, brownish in color with almost no head on my pour. The aroma is where this beer starts to pick up some steam. Caramel, oak, vanilla with a hint of bourbony booze. Flavor continues to much the same with a huge hit of vanilla and caramel with a touch of fruitiness as it warms. The alcohol is definitely present but I did not find it overwhelming. Given the opportunity this will age beautifully.

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Photo of jampics2
4.54/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Jackie O's for the Stout Festival. Served in a 10oz snifter for around $8.

This beer looks great in the glass except for the lack of head. The beer is a dark caramel color with hints of red and gold around the edges. A small film of a head quickly dies out, leaving very little remnants save for a soapy bubble here and there.

The smell is quite frankly one of the best old ale noses, or barrel aged noses anywhere. Huge notes of caramel, brown sugar, vanilla, oak and bourbon leap out of the glass. There are so many layers of goodness. A bit of toffee, dark cherry and a touch of booze finish the well-rounded nose. This is so expressive and intricate. Very, very good so far.

The taste is also stellar, but there's just a touch too much noticeable booze. I wonder if that will mellow out when the beer ages. For now, we get a really tasty base of caramel and toffee with huge notes from the barrel. Some flavors of dark fruit, baked bread and brown sugar lurk in the background. There are luscious hints of vanilla, coconut shavings, bourbon and just a touch of woody tannin. The beer is satisfying and flavorful. It could just use a bit less booze. At 13.5%, I'm not expecting any miracles here, but I would like to see the boozy note smooth out. Close to the best Old Ale I've ever had.

The mouthfeel is a touch on the syrupy side, with a medium to heavy body and low carbonation. That's just fine, but there is a slight flaw in that the finish is just a touch too dry - I'd like some lingering sweetness and instead this seems a bit drying. Overall, with a few small mis-steps noted, this is a legendary brew and one I would be happy to enjoy again and again. I'll be sure to make the trip up to Kuhnhenn for the next release!!

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Photo of punkrkr27
4.52/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Deep mahogany pour with bright, ruby highlights. Lots of rich, over-ripe dark fruit aroma with a healthy balance of sweet and smoky bourbon, lots of vanilla, some black strap molasses, deep aromatic oak, and notes of tobacco, anise, and leather. The flavor is a blast of smoky bourbon upfront. The middle reveals lots of toffee, caramel, and molasses. Finishes with lots of vanilla, fig, raisin, alcohol, anise and oak. The body is sticky and full with soft carbonation.

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Photo of metter98
4.54/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: The beer is very dark brown (near black) in color and poured with a thin ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass and a bit of lacing on the surface.
S: There are moderate aromas of bourbon, caramel, dark fruits, sweetness and oak in the nose.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell in that it has complex flavors. The bourbon flavors are a bit stronger compared to the aroma but they do not dominate the taste and are well incorporated with the other flavors. However, notes of bourbon do stand out in the finish.
M: It feels full-bodied and smooth on the palate with a light amount of carbonation. Notes of warming from the alcohol are present in the finish.
O: Considering its strength, this beer is exceptionally easy to drink because the alcohol is completely masked from the taste.

Note: 2008 vintage

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Photo of cpmichael
4.67/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2010 Bottle. Thanks to khumbard and the regular 4D.

A: Pours a dark ruby red (a darker shade than regular 4D), a little bit of tan foam appears and quickly dissipates.

S: Less of a cotton candy smell that I thought the regular had, this has caramel and toffee sweetness, brown sugar, hints of bourbon, vanilla and oak. This is still very sweet smelling, but a bit more booze in the nose.

T: caramel and toffee dominate, with brown sugar and raisins also prevalent. Nice bourbon and oak characteristics come through. Still very sweet, but the bourbon adds another dimension to the beer. Very complex.

M/D: Thick, like pancake syrup, medium carbonation. Chewy, the alcohol is more noticeable on this one, but it does not detract from how great this thing is.

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Kuhnhenn Bourbon Barrel Fourth Dementia from Kuhnhenn Brewing Company
99 out of 100 based on 395 ratings.