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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 ehammond1
ehammond1


4.78/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle (2012)

Thanks for opening this with me, MarkIntihar!

Nearly black, though very heavy and substantial looking in the glass. Shiny and oily, with a small brown head that leaves dots of stick.

Rich, inviting, monstrous aroma of bourbon (vanilla, oak, maple, alcohol hint), chocolates, and roast. This combines marvelously well. As this warms, there's just a hint of an off vegetable-like note, but it's certainly not distracting, especially because it tastes so good.

Any flaw found in the aroma is completley hidden in the flavor. Rich, layered notes of vanilla, bourbon barrel, molasses, chocolates, and roast combine for an incredilby drinkable, though incredibly significant, substantial barrel-aged RIS.

Full in body, thick, heavy, luscious.

One of the finest beers I've had.

Serving type: bottle

07-15-2012 22:19:06 | More by ehammond1
Photo of Synergy87
Synergy87

Wisconsin

4.65/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle was staring at me in the fridge as I was out of beer. I'm going to attempt to review this beer as a beer advocate instead of a drunkard, because I'm half way done with this godly brew. Yes it is that good. Here we go.

2012 Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord: 241/420

A: Black as sin

S: Bourbon, alcohol

T: Bourbon, no coffee flavors here (almost 4 months old, so no surprised there), sweet sugary fruits, wood

M: Absolutely my favorite part next to taste for this beer, it's so damn ridiculously smooth, I can't describe it, and the carbonation is very minimal, but perfect for the style. Absolutely love the mouthfeel on this one, smooth, smooth, smooth.

O: I can't wait to get tickets for Darklord Day 2013 to have more of this lovely brew. I am looking forward to getting a bottle of the vanilla bean version next year, as this years vanilla bean DL on tap was just amazing. If you get the chance to trade, try this fresh, or try this at all, I highly recommend it. Amazing. Godly.

Serving type: bottle

07-14-2012 03:50:09 | More by Synergy87
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 HopHead84
HopHead84

California

4.58/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From old notes The beer is black, and it doesn't appear as viscous or syrupy as regular Dark Lord. The beer looks near.

The nose is unadulterated decadence. It's reminiscent of chocolate cookies, brown sugar, fudge, chocolate chips, and brownies. Oak isn't prominent, like I was expecting, but it is noticeable. I detect a little molasses and a whisper of vanilla. No oxidation in the nose? I'm astounded!

The flavor is fudge and chocolate cake with light vanilla and a little sugar. The chocolate is insanely rich. I detect a touch of astringency and subtle oak. So decadent. The finish is chocolate desert with a slight roast and a little heat. The mouthfeel is light and silky, not at all like the viscous and syrupy regular mouthfeel on Dark Lord. There's just a dash of oxidation in the flavor, but it's not detrimental. I was expecting this to suck, but it far exceeded my expectations.

Serving type: growler

07-23-2010 09:13:57 | More by HopHead84
Photo of Lunch
Lunch

Maryland

4.65/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Courtesy of a generous trader served at a small tasting by an equally generous host into a tulip glass. This review is for the 2010 batch.

A: Pours nearly black with a motor oil quality with no head to speak of. This is a thick beer that looks quite syrupy and leaves nice legs on the inside of the glass. This was served along with Vanilla Bean Dark Lord and both looked pretty much identical.

S: The oak is really showcased in this and it is really nicely done. Notes of chocolate, molasses, roasted malts, vanilla, and booze.

T: The oak yet again is quite forward and coats the based beer beautifully and is never overpowering. Chocolate appears along with roasted malts, vanilla, and just a hint of alcohol.

M: Full-bodied and extremely thick with just a hint of carbonation. Nothing to complain about here.

D: If it weren't for the extreme richness of this Imperial Stout, I feel that I could drink this all day long.

Overall I must say that beer is absolutely fantastic and I am still shocked that I was able to try this! My Highest Recommendation.

Serving type: growler

06-15-2010 16:57:15 | More by Lunch
Photo of drabmuh
drabmuh

Maryland

4.4/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2010 vintage served in a tulip with the vanilla bean and 2009 DL. Beer is black and thick in the glass. Coats the wall and the swirl leaves legs of alcohol on the walls. There isn't a head or carbonation to speak of but it looks good.

The aroma is slightly hot, oaky, with a lot of roast and a nice smoothness to it. Very liquor. Hints of vanilla, very subtle.

Beer is full bodied and completely coats the mouth. Surprisingly smooth for such a high alcohol beer with such a strong aroma. The woodsiness of the beer mellows out the heat a lot. Lots of roast in the back palate. Drinkability good.

Serving type: growler

05-17-2010 18:07:49 | More by drabmuh
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 DefenCorps
DefenCorps

Oregon

4.63/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Handbottle shared graciously by Chris. It was MUCH better than I remember it being when I tried it at DLD 08

Jet black, no head with dark brown highlights. Not as sludgy as the regular Dark Lord. A solid looking beer.
Holy fucking fuck, what a nose! Chocolate chip cookies with bourbon come right to mind. Just massive, intensely good. A ton of vanilla with a relatively low booze character, with bourbon noticeable. Not hot in the least, the vanilla character is actually quite tastefully done. Mildly raisiny with cocoa powder and chocolate fudge. Just over the top.
The palate isn't as exceptional, but opens with all the fantastic chocolate complexity with cocoa, dark chocolate and fudge. Plenty sweet with caramel, burnt sugar and an incredible accent of bourbon. The oak aging is most noticeable in the vanilla character of this beer, along with a mildly boozy character. Coffee isn't noticeable, though there's enough molasses and licorice to make an effort at countering the chocolate character. Mild dark fruit character is present with raisins soaked in sugar syrup. An incredibly long finish with a bit of booze, a lot of vanilla, mild roast and some chocolate. Thick and HUGE, this big beer has low carbonation and has a perfect body. My belief is reaffirmed, and I'm almost tempted to go to DLD next year and session this and the VB DL. Awesome stuff.

Serving type: growler

11-10-2009 23:57:59 | More by DefenCorps
Photo of largadeer
largadeer

California

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

Got this one from stfun37. Brought this down to San Diego last week and shared it with HopHead84 and dyan. I think this exceeded all of our expectations.

Sludgy opaque black, no head forms from the pour - this is pretty much still. Plenty thick, but not as viscous as the regular Dark Lord, which can only be a good thing.

Huge aroma of chocolate, fudge, chocolate cake, chocolate syrup, vanilla and caramel. Inhaling anywhere near the vicinity of a glass of this is like walking into a chocolatier. Unbelievably sweet and decadent. Oak and bourbon are noticeable, but the chocolate/caramel/vanilla trifecta is dominant.

The taste is brimming with rich chocolate and vanilla, molasses, licorice and oaky tannins. Bourbon is there too, well-integrated and balanced with the base beer. The body is thick and viscous, carbonation non-existent. The finish is mildly tannic, roasty and semi-dry, coffee lingering on the palate.

It's amazing what a little -bal aging will do to a beer. While I'm not at all a fan of the regular Dark Lord, this iteration of it is incredible.

Serving type: growler

11-10-2009 22:58:46 | More by largadeer
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 craytonic
craytonic

District of Columbia

3.18/5  rDev -30.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Looks like DL, pitch black, oil slick, etc, etc

Smell: Only a hint of oak on the scent. Lots of roast malt and molasses.

Taste: Did they add sugar to this one as well? If so, why? Roast malt, molasses, brown sugar, milk chocolate, semi-sweet baking chocolate. The oak is huge on the taste, like a fresh oak barrel. Too much barrel actually. Much hasher than the regular DL or VB DL.

Mouthfeel: Great - thick, chewy, smooth, near perfect.

Drinkability: To much fresh, wet oak and I get some added sugar. Regular DL is better, but honestly none of the three is T-50 worthy in my opinion.

Serving type: growler

08-14-2009 02:28:37 | More by craytonic
Photo of Overlord
Overlord

California

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

Thanks to a prior trader for hooking me up. Shenanigans ensued with the procurement/bottling of this beer, I'm sure.

Pours a dark black, some deep tan bubbling froth, and a bit of a foamy crust.

Smells like ... Dark Lord. I feel like cutting and pasting my review. Hmmm ... Chocolate, dark fruits, a roasted malt backing. So far, not much oak.

Well, the oak makes its appearance in the flavor, in a big ... kind of distracting way. Vanilla, bourbon-y oak, and the familiar chocolate, roasted malt, and velvety dark fruit of the base Dark Lord. They laid a heavy -bal aging on this beer. And yes, there's more than a bit of sherry to it. Thick, viscous, and creamy. Noticeable bourbon component.

Much better on my second sampling.

Serving type: growler

08-13-2009 09:38:31 | More by Overlord
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 MrMcGibblets
MrMcGibblets

Illinois

4.28/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

this was the 2006 woodford reserve barrel-aged version on cask at dl day. poured into a clear plastic solo cup, this was unlike any beer i have ever had. dark and thick like well-used motor oil. and i mean thick. this beer just left remnants of itself on the sides of the cup, turning the cup from clear to brown. brown head. the nose was absolutely huge, dominated by the whiskey notes along with chocolate, coffee, vanilla, smoke, toffee, and raisins. taste was a huge malt sweetness balanced a little by the 3f hops and roasty malts, but more to the malt/sweet side. mouthfeel was more viscous and thick than i have ever experienced. this had very little carbonation from the cask leaving it thickly sweet. long, long finish is ended by whiskey flavors and warming alcohol. still somehow smooth, though. this took a while just to drink a little bit and i probably could have just one of these in a sitting. a real sipper.
update: have had a few more of these, carbonation has been better, would add some serious charred fruit to the above. have enjoyed it more from the regular taps with the added Co2.

[ serving type: cask ]

Serving type: cask

05-05-2007 20:13:18 | More by MrMcGibblets
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 murrayswine
murrayswine

Arizona

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

Poured for me at DL day for 6 bucks a shooter.
Black as hell. Just dark, and oily. The smell is coffee, caramel, nuts, hops (go figure) and acrid bitters. Hint of anise too.
The taste is rather balanced. Thick as hell too. A lot like Founders KBB in it's bourbon/coffee balance. I really thought this would have a lot more grip to it, but it is deadly smooth.
I cry knowing I have to wait a year to try this again.

Serving type: cask

04-30-2006 01:44:30 | More by murrayswine
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Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord Imperial Stout from Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub
100 out of 100 based on 470 ratings.