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Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord Imperial Stout - Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub

Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord Imperial StoutBourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord Imperial Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

470 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 470
Reviews: 170
rAvg: 4.57
pDev: 8.97%


Brewed by:
Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  15.00% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes/Commercial Description:
Dark Lord aged in bourbon barrels for one year. Recently has used a blend of barrels from Heaven Hill, but has also been Woodford Reserve and others in the past

Formerly known as Oak Aged Dark Lord.

(Beer added by: mcallister on 04-29-2006)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 470 | Reviews: 170 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of brystmar
brystmar

Texas

4.23/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to cosmicevan for sharing!

Decent looking, nothing special here though. Strong, smooth bourbon aroma takes over to blend with roasty malts and sugary sweetness.

The underlying taste is a more mature version of DL complimented by sweet, smooth, rounded bourbon. Not too much complexity here: just bourbon. Cognac DL was much more interesting, and a significantly better variant overall.

Still a great beer, but a big step down from the Cognac in my book. But then again, I'm not a bourbon lover.

Serving type: bottle

06-03-2012 02:25:57 | More by brystmar
Photo of beergod1
beergod1

Ohio

4.35/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured Black with small tan head. Aroma is mostly deep, rich Dark fruit with some Cocoa and a hint of roasted malts. Flavor is as smooth as it gets with a hint of alcohol, Coffee, chocolate, sweet malts and thick heavy molasses that stained the glass with every sip. Several layers of flavor. This is a real good Imperial Stout, But just as good as what I can get around Ohio & PA. (Voodoo, Hoppin’ Frog...) And I don’t have to stand in line for those.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2011 03:05:43 | More by beergod1
Photo of dboon
dboon

Florida

4.22/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

PVW bottle. Joan Jett black pour with a chocolate head. Huge bourbon aromas. This version, like the ’10 DL in my opinion, is not thick and motor oil like as previous years. The taste was very sweet with lots of molasses, chocolate malts, vanilla, and very very muted bourbon flavors.

Serving type: bottle

07-25-2011 20:46:00 | More by dboon
Photo of Huhzubendah
Huhzubendah

District of Columbia

4.97/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thanks to Brad for sharing this at his tasting on Saturday!

2010 vintage, served side by side with Dark Lord and Vanilla Bean Dark Lord.

Oak Aged Dark Lord pours a near jet black, with hints of brown visible at the upper edges of the glass when held to the light. Head and lacing are somewhat subdued, but given the serving medium, I couldn't ask for more. A great big aroma of rich roasted malt and oak barrels. Wow. Dark Lord is one of my favorite beers, and I find the addition of oak barrels to be quite wonderful. There is a prominent licorice note in the taste. Someone described the feel as "oil slick in the gulf" and I have to agree. Thick and chewy, this beer leaves a coating of stout residue in your mouth that utterly blankets the palate. This is remarkably smooth, given the high alcohol (it is higher this year than previous vintages), and gives a nice, warm burn as it slides down. I really hope I can go to DLD next year and get some of this fresh from the tap.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

On tap at DLD 2011.

Simply delicious. Similar in some regards to Goose Island Bourbon County Rare. The beer is full of flavor and wonderfully smooth. Alcohol content hidden beautifully. Lingering aftertaste of delicious bourbon. Warming sensation as it goes down. World class.

Serving type: bottle

05-17-2010 17:05:40 | More by Huhzubendah
Photo of tpd975
tpd975

Florida

5/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Hand bottle provided by gunhaver.

A: Pours as dark as night, flat pitch black with only a bubble or two for a head. The beer is thick, dense, it literally coats the glass.

S: Huge vanilla aromas, from the wood I guess. Nothing artifical about the vanilla though, it is like creamy buttery vanilla. The wood component is huge as well. Like fresh cut oak. Strong roasty notes are there along with hints of molasses and chocolate.

T: Holy Hell! There is nothing like this beer. It is the king of barrel aged beers in my mind without a doubt. Fudge like chocolate up front along with a big blast of roast. The oak component is huge and so enjoyable. Vanilla manages to push through with hints of bourbon. A slight milky coco puffs flavor can be picked up as well. Simple flavors that seem to just meld together perfectly. Really is a perfect beer.

M: Full bodied, lacks carbonation from the hand bottling, but it really don't suffer. I like lower levels of carbonation on RIS' anyway.

D: Wonderful, would love to drink all night until I pass out. Reason enough to make a trip to Dark Lord Day.

Serving type: bottle

09-04-2009 13:09:45 | More by tpd975
Photo of brdc
brdc

Wisconsin

4.5/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at DLD 09.

Pitch black, motor oil, no highlights, and a thin but fluffy dark tan head that holds for a little bit and leaves some lacing that coats the side of the glass.
Aroma is quite impressive, dark fruits abounding, molasses, coffee but not too much coffee, chocolate, bread and alcohol. Oakiness and vanilla, perhaps some extra heat as compared to the regular version.
It is a very thick, oily beer as expected, complex, with coffee, bittersweet chocolate, sweet caramel, molasses, fruits, vanilla but some noticeable heat, brandy like, which does not blend perfectly.
This is an incredible beer, but IMHO, one step down from regular DL. The oak aging did not match perfectly. Still a fantastic beer.

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2009 02:34:39 | More by brdc
Photo of Blursimarsi
Blursimarsi

Sweden

4.5/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

(Bottle, thanks to SQNfan) If Blursimarsi cannot come to Dark Lord Day, then Dark Lord Day has to come to Blursimarsi. Pours compact dark brown to black. The aroma is fat with oak/bourbon up front bringing tones of vanilla, coconut, light smoke and alcohol. In addition, lots of malt roasts with dark chocolate and chocolate ice cream as the most notable but there is also some room for coffee/espresso. Sweet sugary and dark fruity with tones of molasses, maple syrup, rum raisins and prunes. Hints of raspberries, nuts and celery. The flavour is medium to heavily sweet, light to medium bitter and medium to heavily roasted/burned. Bourbon, vanilla, coconut, dark chocolate, rum raisins, burned caramel, some coffee, mint-ish alcohol warmth, molasses and light smoke. The mouthfeel is extremely fat and oily yet smooth, soft and velvety with a balanced sticky ending. Aftertaste of bitter chocolate, coffee, bourbon hop dryness and molasses. Full bodied. Extreme but well balanced. Wow!

Serving type: bottle

10-04-2008 03:34:24 | More by Blursimarsi
Photo of Atron67
Atron67

Wisconsin

4.5/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

bought this at the 2008 DLD and had both the vanilla bean and and oak aged versions.

overall i think they were better than the regular dark lord. the vanilla being alot better in taste with the vanilla blending in amazingly, however the nose of the vanilla bean aged was overpowered by the vanilla flavor. really creamy all over the place for both of them. the bourbon was much mor subtle on the nose, however also really good.

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2008 00:06:32 | More by Atron67
Photo of weeare138
weeare138

Pennsylvania

4.7/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Special filled hand bottle from an un-named source creating a raving mystery much like the Dark Lord itself...
Appears a dark black with a small tan head that fades into a a gentle tan collar.
Smell is of rich maple sweet vanilla, dark chocolate, bourbon, oak, fresh brownie batter, and raisins.
Mouthfeel is heavy on the palate, warming, sweet, raisiny, and sticky with a mildly rich burn in the swallow.
Drinkability is pretty good on this despite the instant warming bourbon burn that makes it pretty intense with an alcohol presence. Nice!

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2006 17:07:33 | More by weeare138
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84

California

4.21/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at the 2013 Firestone Walker Invitational held at the Paso Robles Event Center in Paso Robles, CA.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, vanilla, bourbon, and alcohol aromas. Taste is much the same with cocoa and vanilla flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roasty and woody bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer with some nice barrel aged aromas and flavors.

Serving type: on-tap

06-03-2013 02:00:03 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of Auracom
Auracom

Illinois

4.44/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

2 oz. of the 2011 Bourbon variant on-tap at DLD on April 27th, 2013. Thanks to Wes for giving us his second glass, otherwise we'd have missed out entirely.

A - Basically identical to the regular version. Perhaps a tad more of that rich oil coating.

S - Plentiful bourbon whiskey melding over raisins, fudge, batter, pencil shavings, and sherry.

T - Dense oak that's been super-saturated with bourbon (albeit slightly generic). Deep cocoa, honey graham cracker, molasses, prune, and massive raisin.

M - Medium-heavy body, carbonation low enough to not be immediately detectable, dry finish.

D - Few base beers change as much in a barrel as Dark Lord. I certainly appreciate the transportation and would never decline a taste.

Serving type: on-tap

04-29-2013 16:20:37 | More by Auracom
Photo of beerhan
beerhan

Ohio

4.44/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

2011 vintage served on draft at 2013 dark lord day.

A - Jet black just like the standard dark lord. Thin brown lacing after a faint cocoa head.

S - Bourbon up front of course with lots of dark fruit, figs, milk chocolate, caramel, sugar

T - What you smell is what you get. An intense whiskey bomb that is very mellow. Lots of chocolate and dark fruit but not as pronounced as in the regular version. Less sweet and more woody for lack of better words. The barrel character really shines through and highlights the base beer.

M - No carbonation really but that is to be expected. Almost a little too sweet to the point where it hurts to drink. Alcohol is there but it goes down smooth enough that you can't feel it right away.

O - Absoulteley delicious and more well rounded than most bourbon barrel stouts. I am not sure if the bottle cost is worth it but this is a nice beer and that is what counts.

Serving type: on-tap

04-28-2013 00:10:12 | More by beerhan
Photo of spointon
spointon

Illinois

4.9/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I had this one at the 20th anniversary party of the Map Room in Chicago. Served on tap, I received about a 10oz pour into a short hourglass shaped glass.

A= Poured opaque and sporting a 1/4" rich brown head. Once the glass was full this ale looked as black as motor oil. Once it was almost gone and the light got into it I could start to see traces of ruby and amber. By the way, I took the last sip and put the glass down and was amused to see that a lot of liquid still clung to the sides.

S= Huge complexity in the nose. Aside from the bourbon (which was giving me amazingly big and rich aromas), I noted heavy syrupy malt, roasted grain, some toffee-like richness, hints of coffee, and alcohol. Not overpowering or solvent-y in any way though.

T= My God, it was amazing. This beer was custom made for a bourbon barrel. Often times I thing the bourbon barrel overpowers a beer. Not the Dark Lord. Things started off with the best parts of bourbon (sweet complexity) plus vanilla, roasted grain, coffee, toffee, and an almost indescribable richness that was not heavy or cloying despite the ten ton weight of this beer. It was a sipping experience for sure, but I never felt that it was overwhelming. The hops were pretty much non-existent. The finish was smooooth, warm with a pleasant alcohol, and sweet.

MF= Beyond heavy body...it's in a class by itself. When I had finished it, there was enough liquid sticking to the sides of the glass to make the glass look brown for a few seconds and allow me another small sip (and lots of aroma for a long time after the experience was over). Carbonation was there but otherwise not really a factor.

D= Despite the 15% abv, despite the syrupy thick body, despite the sweetness, this beer was really a joy to experience and ultimately the drinkability was high. Unexpectedly high. A moving experience that I will not hesitate to repeat.

Serving type: on-tap

11-24-2012 05:56:07 | More by spointon
Photo of birderbeerer
birderbeerer

Virginia

4.68/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at DLD 2012 (and 2011).

Pitch black and syrupy as all dark lords tend to be. Oak comes through more in this version than it does in the vanilla. And the sweetness and heat from the bourbon seems subdued and dried by that oak.

The dark fruit flavors come through more in this version rather than vanilla also. I don't know if this is aged longer than vanilla bean but the beer seems much less sweet and much richer in flavor.

But it's also not quite as big or rich as vanilla. I would call those two a tie or maybe vanilla has a very slight edge.

Serving type: on-tap

06-18-2012 14:43:11 | More by birderbeerer
Photo of DonKruse
DonKruse


4.95/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I'm a newbie to craft beers but went to a festival with some guru friends of mine and they let me try some of this. This beer has a full and very smooth simple flavor. I don't know enough about beer to say what the flavors were but I wanted to say even as a newbie I can still appreciate this beer.

Serving type: on-tap

03-12-2012 01:37:25 | More by DonKruse
Photo of gbbass16
gbbass16

Missouri

4.78/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Dark Lord Day 2011. Thanks to the girl who traded me hers for a cigarette. She had no clue...

This was another epiphany for me. Pour is dark and black with virtually no head. Smell lights up your nose with burnt, sweet, and no heat. Mouthfeel is really think and wonderful. Taste is an expolosion of coffee, carmel, chocolate, coffee, dark wood. Awesome RIS!!! I am gald to have 4 bottles resting comfortably that I wont open until mid 2012. Every so often, I go to the closet just to stare at them....

Serving type: on-tap

11-24-2011 19:05:24 | More by gbbass16
Photo of ajsdad06
ajsdad06

Ohio

4.55/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I think 6 oz. draft into a plastic cup @ DLD the past two years (rating is from 4/08).

This pours jet black with no real head to speak of; perhaps a few tan bubbles scattered about. It is so thick that it refuses to leave the sides of the cup.

The aroma has the big sweet caramel malt, roast,etc from the base Darklord and adds bourbon, light oak, anise, and hints at the abv.

The flavors are intense and include roasted malt, chocolate,coffee, caramel, vanilla,oak, bourbon, and anise. There is a dark chocolate like bitterness.

Definetly full bodied, with the flavor lingering for quite some time. It is worth the time away from the tasting tables to enjoy this special brew once a year.

Serving type: on-tap

07-20-2011 00:16:46 | More by ajsdad06
Photo of zrab11
zrab11

Indiana

4.1/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at DLD 2011

A-poured a motor oil black with a tiny tan head and alittle bit of lacing

S- Has a strong bourbon smell up fron followed by some dark fruit notes as well as come chocolate and malts

T- Has a strong bitter chocolate flavor up front followed by a nice malty middle and then finishs with a pur bourbon kick.

M-Full bodied with nice carbonation

O-Overall this was a top notch beer. Not as good as Vanilla DLD by any means. Well atleast in my opinion. In my little circle of 8 guys at DLD this was all their fav. besides me. Very good beer but just alittle too much bite and hottness to love it. Will have it again at DLD for sure.

Serving type: on-tap

07-02-2011 03:21:06 | More by zrab11
Photo of Alpar
Alpar

Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Dark Lord Day 2011.

Well worth the wait.

A: Dark with no head just like the others.

S: Damn fine Bourbon bliss!

T: Ok, I tasted the bourbon at first and it was smooth, but after going back and forth between this and the vanilla DL I developed this Graham cracker taste which complemented the vanilla's marshmallow flavor, unreal!

O: Overall I have to say it was one of the best beer experiences of my life but the vanilla is better if I had to have only one.

Serving type: on-tap

05-23-2011 21:37:18 | More by Alpar
Photo of brew3crew
brew3crew

Ohio

4.85/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this on tap at DLD 11. had to wait about an hour to try it but it was worth the wait.

A-Pours a jet and souless black. no life exists in this glass
S-Great bourbon smell. not too much but not too little. I love it when it is like this
T-Wonderful. Very subtle bourbon makes this a very drinkable beer.
M-Medium body, creamy and smooth
O-Great beer overall. wish they made more of it!

Serving type: on-tap

05-10-2011 20:19:06 | More by brew3crew
Photo of Dreadnaught33
Dreadnaught33

District of Columbia

4.93/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Had this on tap at DLD 2011 in the Brewpub. I absolutely love Three Floyds. Bourbon Barrel dark Lord is the description.

A: Definitely pours black as hell with a small tan ring of head and great legs of alcohol. Very nice look.

S: Wow, the best mix of amazing sweet and savory bourbon with huge dark malt of any bourbon aged stout I've had to date. Raisin, Vanilla, burnt malt, dark fruit all combine amazingly. Complex and exceptional.

T: Taste does not disappoint, Might be the best tasting beer I've ever had even better than Vanilla IMHO. More flavors from the already bourbon and dark malt smell characters include molasses, vanilla bean, dark fruit, some coffee roast, and more. Tastes like the stout I think God would want to have.

M: Smooth and mostly not too hot, but a little alcohol lingers here. Would easily be a 5 with some age.

D: Totally amazing and just a pleasure to try. I beginning to think Dark Lord might be the best stout the barrel age in history.

Serving type: on-tap

05-09-2011 20:56:06 | More by Dreadnaught33
Photo of Phelps
Phelps

Arizona

3.88/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the tap at Dark Lord Day, served in the brewpub inside a tiny snifter. This particular variant of Dark Lord spent time in Heaven Hill bourbon barrels.

Inky black with a teeny tiny head that fizzled away to nothingness. Very thin ring.

Sweet nose. Molasses, light coffee, dark cherry, vanilla, hints of oak. Sugared and syrupy.

Heavy bourbon at first, though the flavor lightens at the swallow. Lots of dark cherries, vanilla, brandy, molasses, hints of coffee, toffee and dark chocolate. Mostly the sweet stuff.

Medium, buttery body expands in the mouth. Oodles of alcohol on the tongue and in the nose. Heavy, syrupy, but not cloying. Fairly clean finish.

I’ve enjoyed the oak-aged Dark Lord in previous years, but this isn’t as smooth as I remember. I might actually prefer the un-aged version, and I definitely prefer the vanilla-aged version.

Serving type: on-tap

05-08-2011 23:45:12 | More by Phelps
Photo of oline73
oline73

Maryland

4.6/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I had this on-tap at the 3 Floyds brewpub during Dark Lord Day.

Appearance: Pours a pitch black color with no light coming through. There is hardly any head.

Smell: The smell is very sweet and roasty with bourbon hitting the nose right away. I'm also picking up some chocolate and vanilla notes.

Taste: This is an awesome tasting beer. Very sweet and roasty with some bourbon heat. I'm picking up hints of cocoa and vanilla. Very smooth.

Mouthfeel: Very thick and mouth coating. The carbonation is mild and the finish is dry.

Overall: I liked the vanilla version a little bit better, but I really enjoyed this one as well. The balance is wonderful and it is a smooth drinker.

Serving type: on-tap

05-07-2011 21:53:45 | More by oline73
Photo of ktrillionaire
ktrillionaire

Florida

4.75/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Black and oily, capped with some reddish-mocha bubbles.

S - The nose is an outrageous combination of deeply roasted notes, coffee and chocolate, dark fruit, and oaky vanilla. The booze is obvious as a flavor component, but not as hotness at all.

T - The delectability offered by the nose is fully realized in the flavor. Big luscious notes are leaping from the glass - ranging from coffee, toffee, and cocoa, to anise-licorice, vinous dark fruit and whisky - and covering up the staggering ABV along the way. This is just phenomenally delicious, nothing more need be said.

M - Sticky, oily, hugely decadent.

O - This is definitely worthy of the hype; it is so much better than the base beer that it boggles my mind.

Serving type: on-tap

05-06-2011 23:26:29 | More by ktrillionaire
Photo of aerozeppl
aerozeppl

New York

4.75/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

DLD.

A: The beer looked no different than the vanilla version. A super thick BLACK beer with no head with only a few bubbles. Also this beer had legs.

S: The nose was so rich and not as one dimensional as the vanilla. The bourbon was a real treat. Also this was 2010 dark lord so it had some time to chill out. The bourbon was up front but with the diminished booziness of fresh DL it worked out well and took that and replaced it with something you wanted to smell.

T: One of the best bourbon barrel beers that I have ever had. The complexity was off the charts and it did not come across as sweet like the vanilla version. Both were excellent but I preferred this.

M: Super thick with almost no carbonation. A joy.

D: I had 2 samples of each version. I tried going back for a third but friends settled me into getting a dreadnaught and calming down. It was worth the price and the blend of both was amazing. It was worth the 5 hours we were in line to get some.

Serving type: on-tap

05-05-2011 23:01:38 | More by aerozeppl
Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord Imperial Stout from Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub
100 out of 100 based on 470 ratings.