Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord Imperial Stout - Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub
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Ratings: 541 | Reviews: 170 | Display Reviews Only:
4.47/5 rDev -2.2%
Sampled at DLD '10. Pours just as black and thick and oily as Dark Lord ever does. The aroma is massively boozy chocolate, dark fruits, and coffee just like regular Dark Lord but with a very oaky/woody overtone. It's not like the typical oak aroma from most bourbon barrel beers. It has sort of a green/fresh woody quality to it. The flavor is also again dominated by massive waves of chocolate, molasses, dark fruit, and coffee. Again though, like the aroma, the oak comes off as sort of harsh and green. The regular '10 Dark Lord seemed a bit smoother and more balanced.
12-01-2010 20:25:49 | More by punkrkr27
4.43/5 rDev -3.1%
Draft. Finally found my notes for DLD and getting these in to review! Draft. Poured a pitch black color with minimal head (I'm sure the plastic cup helped with that). Smells like DL but with huge hints of the oak barrels. Subtle sweetness. Slight smokiness. Adding the DL to the Oak barrels was a great move that only added additional complexity to this beer. Would be great to see it bottled instead of having to drink it from a plastic cup at DLD.
08-20-2010 19:45:13 | More by kbutler1
4.58/5 rDev +0.2%
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.
07-23-2010 09:13:57 | More by HopHead84
4.65/5 rDev +1.8%
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.
06-15-2010 16:57:15 | More by Lunch
4.7/5 rDev +2.8%
Review #300. From 6/2/10 notes. Had at a Three Floyds tasting at the Brickskeller in DC. This was a 2009 Dark Lord vintage aged in whiskey barrels.
a - Pours a pure black color with little head and carbonation.
s - Smells of whiskey, oak, and maybe a little vanilla. Also some sweet malts.
t - Tastes of whiskey, oak, sweet dark fruits, and vanilla. Has a touch of heat to it.
m - Medium to full body and low carbonation.
d - I enjoyed this beer quite a bit. I'm a big fan of whiskey and oak in stouts, and this one was great. Also enjoyed the sweetness in the smell and taste. Very interested to open one of my bottles of regular DL now to compare the two, and would love to try again some day.
Edit: Got to try this again on tap at Dark Lord Day at the brewery on 04/30/11 and liked it a lot more than the first time I had it. I thought the nose was absolutely amazing; the bourbon and vanilla really shone through. Bumping the nose from a 4.5 to a 5.0.
06-05-2010 20:41:05 | More by mdfb79
District of Columbia
4.1/5 rDev -10.3%
4 ozish pour in a plastic cup at Brickskeller 3F tasting. I interpreted this to be the 2010 release of the 2009 DL aged in whiskey barrels, not the 2009 Oak Aged Dark Lord. Either way...
Pours an extremely sludgy, viscous syrup like dark brown, near black with a non-existent head and no signs of carbonation. So yea, appearance is pretty much as expected for style, but nothing exciting. Aroma is hot and abrasive, assaulting you while the glass is still on the table. Immediately hits you with bourbon and oak. After letting acclimating to the booze and burn, other notes from the base DL are apparent, including chocolate, coffee and more oak. Very sweet, raw and complex aroma. Mouthfeel is very thick and chewy, silky and long lasting on the palate, near perfect. Flavors follow similar pattern to the nose; overall extremely sweet and it takes a moment to get past the oak and bourbon to pick out the subtleties of the original dark lord, and it that its primarily chocolatey. This isn't a 13% ABV beer that you can said hides its alcohol well either as there is a noticeable burn associated with each sip. This was an unexpected to treat to try, but overall I was left feeling like this in an instance of an amazing beer + more amazingness (barrel aging) != doubly amazingness. Overall some of the complexity is sapped out of this by the dominance of the boozy and oak flavors.
06-04-2010 20:55:43 | More by yourefragile
4.3/5 rDev -5.9%
On tap at the Brickskellar last night. The 3 Floyd's rep indicated this was the 2009 whiskey barrel aged version of DL.
The beer pours the expected viscuous looking, blackish brown color with minimal head retention and/or lacing. On the other hand, I can smell this bad boy from a foot away... the nose is profound, showing milk duds, coffee, whiskey, vanilla and considerable booze. This beer just smells flat out decadent. For the most part, the flavor profile replicates the nose, though it's a bit one dimensional and is dominated by sweet chocolate and coffee. The beer is decidedly on the sweet side, and is almost ponderous on the palate. Mouthfeel is absolute perfection and the beer is a huge presence on the palate. The beer feels like spun silk on the palate, with a buttery, creamy texture that is plush, soft, smooth and long. There is a hint of bitterness on the finish, which I think keeps this beer from being over the top rich and sweet. Considering how sweet, boozy and alcoholic this beer is, it's no surpirse that drinkability is not its best attribute. This beer is really more like an after dinner liquer, and it's hard to imagine too many other occasions when I'd want to drink a beer like this. Originally I had contemplated ordering another glass after the tasting, but after my finishing off my 3 or ounce "sampler," I really couldn't bring myself to drink any more. Regardless, this beer is a stunner and is absolutely outstanding.
06-03-2010 15:03:29 | More by John_M
4.72/5 rDev +3.3%
2009 vintage served at the Brickskeller 3Floyds tasting with Barnaby as the speaker (5 oz pour).
A: Jet black with no head and thin dark brown lacing
S: Incredible aromas of oak, bourbon (Woodford Reserve barrels), and chocolate.
T: Wow, this is as good as it gets for a bourbon barrel stout. It's not overly sweet like I was expecting (based on 2009 Dark Lord). There are huge vanilla, oak, bourbon, dark fruit, and milk chocolate flavors - all in harmony. Also, a hint of coffee and caramel comes through, giving it an added complexity.
M: Mouthfeel is thick, but not as thick as bottled Dark Lord. It is, however, very creamy, velvety smooth and coats the mouth very well.
D: The only knock on this beer is the slight alcohol burn - you can tell it's 13% (or more).
Overall this is one of the best bourbon barrel stouts out there, and I feel so lucky to have gotten the opportunity to try it outside of Dark Lord Day. Big thanks to Barnaby and Nick for bringing it to the Brickskeller tasting!
06-03-2010 13:41:34 | More by bmanning
4.4/5 rDev -3.7%
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.
05-17-2010 18:07:49 | More by drabmuh
District of Columbia
4.97/5 rDev +8.8%
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.
05-17-2010 17:05:40 | More by Huhzubendah
4.95/5 rDev +8.3%
Was definitely looking forward to having a few glasses of the oak-aged Dark Lord again this year. This was my favorite the last few years and being that one can only have it once per year, I was getting anxious! Judging by the number of people at the event several hours before the gates even opened, we figured it would behoove us to get in there quickly!
Poured into the cheap plastic cup, it really just doesn't do this beer any justice. It is still a nice looking pour - thick, oily, black, and messy. Just enough juice on the pour to create a slight frothy head. I have a feeling this would be quite nice in a snifter, but I digress.
Ah yes - wood and bourbon. Really doesn't smell that much like standard Dark Lord, but damn impressive. Sweet smelling, with some syrup or maple and some chocolate. I really like what the barrel has done to this beer.
And every bit as impressive on the palate as I remember. As expected from the smell, there is quite a bit of bourbon presence that is not around in the standard version of Dark Lord. I'm not as good at detecting the woodiness in the taste, but the smoothness given by the barrel-aging process is amazing. This is by far my favorite of the three Dark Lords - if not for being served in a plastic cup, it would certainly receive a perfect score. Very thick, chewy, and oily - I love the way it coats the mouth and hangs around long after the beer is gone. One of the detractors of Dark Lord over the past couple of years has been the sweetness. The oak-aging replaces that sweetness with a more mellow smooth taste - this is why it is so amazing.
Tough to rank the drinkability on a three ounce pour - which is why it is imperative that one gets several glasses! And even after several glasses, I'm lining up for more. I still contend that Three Floyd's should bottle about 50 bottles of this per year, and then produce 50 "golden tickets" that are different than the normal ones. A true Willy Wonka experience. If you get one of the special golden tickets in the mail, you can redeem it for a bottle of the oak-aged. Something to think about Nick.
Regardless of the chaos of Dark Lord Day (which I truly enjoy), the oak-aged Dark Lord alone is enough to bring me back every year. A masterpiece.
05-10-2010 06:07:29 | More by hayesez
4.9/5 rDev +7.2%
Enjoyed at Dark Lord Day 2010.
Appearance: Black, thick, no head to speak of.
Taste: As I drank this, I honestly thought that it was a taste of Heaven itself. Malty. Vanilla. Chocolate. Coffee. Clearly oak-aged. Absolutely heavenly.
Mouthfeel: Sooo smooth and thick. It reminded me of silk or velvet.
Drinkability: If not for the ABV I could drink it for all eternity.
05-06-2010 21:42:12 | More by slimstout
United Kingdom (Wales)
4.5/5 rDev -1.5%
Had this on tap at DLD 2010 in the brewpub.
Served into a tumbler/snifter glass.
Served with 1/2 finger of creamy tan head. Color is just like vanilla bean dl: pitch black.
Aroma: Straight up oak, chocolate, and malty. Rich. Big caramel sweetness. Subtle aroma, but awesome. Very well done.
Taste: sweet malts with lots of caramel and cream. Some toffee flavors. The oak is present with a big wood flavor (yes I just typed big wood). Some raisins and molasses. Chocolaty goodness.
Mouthfeel: Smooth, warming, and creamy. Full bodied with a lower amount of carbonation. Hot aftertaste. Ends malty and warm.
Overall, not bad at all. Very fine beer. The VB is better, but I am not complaining with this one. Very drinkable and I am glad I got a chance to try this one.
05-04-2010 14:20:47 | More by mothman
4.43/5 rDev -3.1%
On draft at Dark Lord Day 2010 - Pours jet black with a thin wispy, chocolate head. Aroma is complex- vanilla and bourbon dominate with mollasses, chocolate, and soy sauce. Taste is similar - mollasses, chocolate, bourbon, coffee, and alcohol, Mouthfeel is both oily and creamy. My favorite imperial stout.
05-03-2010 23:50:46 | More by tmgiddings
4.43/5 rDev -3.1%
I had this on tap at dl into a 12oz plastic cup. The beer is black as expected with a medium tan head. The aroma is nice with the oak dominating the front, nice notes of vanilla and sweet chocolate. The taste is also lots of oak but not overpowering or annoying. It really adds a lot to the original dl but not quite as good as the vanilla.
05-03-2010 20:21:49 | More by jrallen34
4.38/5 rDev -4.2%
A: The pour is viscous and black with just a bit of tan foam around the edge of the glass.
S: A definite oak and bourbon presence to the nose without the intense sweetness Dark Lord usually has. Certainly some sweet chocolate and vanilla with a bit of dark fruits.
T: The oak aging gives this one a bit of a tannic character and some bitterness that the original does not exhibit. The bourbon, vanilla, and oak flavors are quite strong but still allow the chocolate, roast, licorice, and dark fruits to show.
M: The body is thick and chewy with a low, smooth carbonation.
D: I like this one much better than Dark Lord. The oak aging here has helped to balance the beer out and mitigate the overwhelming sweetness.
05-02-2010 22:15:30 | More by womencantsail
4.28/5 rDev -6.3%
Pours a viscous black, oily with coating properties from both malt and alcohol. A few bubbles around the rim of the glass are compact and stick around. Aromas waft up of dark malts, maple, dark fruit, oak, umami, bourbon, and mineral elements. Most of the overly sweet malt characters from Dark Lord are here replaced by thick oak with spirit notes and a bit saltier than the regular liquid dessert.
The flavor brings the same loads of dark malts to the tongue, in addition to being brownie batter a lot of oak pops up, minteral, even tealike and oxidized flavors pop up a bit. I could see how some people would prefer this to regular Dark Lord, as the oak changes a lot of the sweetness into an oaky more savory experience, though molasses and malt is still here. Body is full and viscous with a coating feeling on the palate and a palpable low-moderate carbonation to match.
Interesting twist on Dark Lord, not as sweet, but I think I prefer the sweeter malts to the oaky twist in this case. The flavor is intense, which is fine if the taste is perfection, but this isn't quite it.
05-02-2010 18:08:36 | More by vacax
4.7/5 rDev +2.8%
I had the pleasure of having this on tap at the FFF brewpub on DLD, and immediately after having a DLVB, and this was better.
A-Black, nuff said there. Out of the tap and "rested" there was no head or lacing to comment on.
S-Rich and complex with bourbon, roasted malts, oak and chocolate aromas with hints of vanilla and dark fruits.
T-If someone made a mocha flavored bourbon, it would taste like this. Very, very nice and the flavors linger and remind you why this beer is so highly rated.
M-Creamy, thick and low carbonation.
D-Excellent beer and one of my all time favorites. Well worth the wait and deserving of the hype.
05-01-2010 23:23:46 | More by bierenutz
3.33/5 rDev -27.1%
Had a couple 3 oz servings at 2010 DLD in a plastic cup. Of the 3 variations of Dark Lord that I tried, this was my favorite.
A: Jet black oily in color with a thin brown head.
S: Bourbon and oak flavors dominate the aroma
T: More bourbon and oak in the taste, with notes of chocolate and alcohol.
M: Thick and syrupy mouthfeel with a dry cocoa finish. More alcohol flavors in the finish.
D: I realize drinkability and availability are different, but given the beer is only available 1 day a year for a 3 oz serving, I'm not sure how drinkable you can rate the beer. Saying that it pairs really well with my Italian Sub that I got standing in line doesn't quite sound right.
05-01-2010 17:42:38 | More by chaz01
4.72/5 rDev +3.3%
A - Had this on tap at Dark Lord Day 2010, poured into a plastic cup. Nicely black with some brown lacing sticking to the sides, I kind of think the plastic cup adds to the lacing effect, but it looked very cool.
S - It smells like Dark Lord, but with some nice subtle wood flavor added. Great chocolate, bourbon, oak smells with the normal Dark Lord greatness.
T - I love Dark Lord, especially the 2010 batch, and this is an improvement. Great cocoa, caramel, and a touch of espresso and huge oak influence that is perfectly done. Hints of vanilla and a bit of bourbon. Wow.
M - Thick, full bodied, coats the tongue.
D - So heavy, it would be hard to drink tons of, but all things considered, could do a lot more of this than anyone reasonably should be able t.
04-29-2010 22:45:10 | More by AgentZero
4.88/5 rDev +6.8%
A 10-12oz sample poured into a little clear plastic cup amongst about 9000 people waiting in line. I was too late to get any VBDL, but was very excited to get to try this one. Appearance is definitive Dark Lord, a small dark tan head. The nose on this one is awesome. Oak and bourbon up front, with dark lord sweetness behind. Chocolate and dark fruit. The taste follows the smell and really delivers. The barrel comes through strong with bourbon and vanilla. The oak really smooths out all of the complex dark lord flavors. Coating and thick mouthfeel, that lingers until you can have another sip. Dark Lord is an incredible beer, but this is an unbelievable beer. One of the best beers I've had the pleasure of having. Can't wait until next year.
04-28-2010 00:20:34 | More by khumbard
4.8/5 rDev +5%
I had the pleasure of trying both the Oak Aged and Vanilla Bean Dark Lord at DLD 2010. While I would describe the VB DL as a kinder, gentler version of regular Dark Lord, the Oak Aged version is every bit as brutally massive (and then some).
The Oak Aged Dark Lord is simply a more complex version of the real deal. The added wood character slaps you around with yet one more characteristic compounding something that is already very complex.
As with the VB DL, the only advice I would recommend for further improvement is to allow this to mellow out with some age. Being freshly tapped from a new keg obviously doesn't allow this - but it would be cool to have a bottled version of Oak Aged Dark Lord to lay down for a few more months.
In all, I like the Oak Aged Dark Lord that much more than the regular version. I hope they produce more next year!
04-27-2010 22:07:44 | More by PrinceDarren
4.22/5 rDev -7.7%
Got to have a small glass of this at Dark Lord Day 2010. The pour was pitch black with some dark chocolate lacing clinging to the sides of the glass. It's one of the darkest and thickest looking stouts I think I've ever seen. It left a little lacing on the glass but not a lot.
The aroma had a big vanilla and oak wood presence with a good amount of bourbony alcohol flavor to it as well. It also had dark chocolate, roasted malts and a little dark fruit to it. The barrel added a very nice complex aroma to it, it was a little strong but didn't overwhelm the beer.
The taste also has a large oak, vanilla and bourbon presence to it. The bourbon flavor gave it a warming alcohol finish. Also present were some dark roasted and chocolate flavors but they definitely took a backseat to the barrel flavors.
The mouthfeel was nice and thick with low carbonation. Very nice mouthfeel on it considering I like thick and heavy stouts. Drinkability was decent although the alcohol and barrel characteristics were a little strong. The 4-5 oz glass that I got was plenty for me.
Overall a very nice modification of Dark Lord. I enjoyed the glass I had but probably wouldn't have gotten another one, especially if this was a beer available all the time. It felt like the barrel characteristics were a little overpowering and became the main flavor of the beer instead of Dark Lord being the main flavor with some barrel characteristics to enhance the complexity. Don't get me wrong it was delicious and great for the serving size they gave out, just couldn't justify any higher scores for it based on that.
04-27-2010 14:42:44 | More by billab914
4.58/5 rDev +0.2%
My buddy snagged a sample of this for me, along with regular DL for both of us, while I was standing in line for bottles. Thanks Beast!
On-tap in the parking lot into a plastic cup, then transferred to my tasting tulip.
A: Viscous black body with some nice dark brown foam. Looks amazing.
S: Very sweet, very potent aroma of roasted malts (lots of chocolate, some coffee), bourbon, vanilla, and oak. Lovely.
T: Follows the nose, with restrained booze overseeing a luscious medley of sweet, malty, oaky, bourbony goodness. Awesome.
M: Smooth, thick, creamy body. Sticky, but enjoyable, with expectedly low carbonation.
D: Super sweet and super strong, but the oak aging makes this tasty enough to make me want far more than the small sample. Considering how many high-test beers I've sampled today, though, that probably isn't the best idea.
Notes: This is an awesome, delicious beer, and is far more impressive than this years fresh regular DL. While I look forward to seeing how that ages (and I have very high hopes), there's no question that today this is the more delectable beverage. I'm still kicking myself for not getting in line for the Vanilla Bean DL right away, though. Here's hoping I can make it back next year!
04-27-2010 14:36:20 | More by woosterbill
4.43/5 rDev -3.1%
Had this on tap at DLD 2010. Review from notes on 4/24/10.
A - Poured a deathly black, lovely dark brown hue in the light with a scant tan head. No lace remained. 4.0
S - Big, roasty, and lots of caramel. Hint of vanilla and charred oak in the background. Touch of figs and dark fruit as well. 4.5
T - This robust beer is definitely a highlight of the day. The intense cocoa, caramel, and roasted barley mingles with the delicate tones of vanilla and wood, finishing extremely rich with an everlasting dark chocolate and plum finish. 4.5
M - Not as viscous as I had thought it would be, but a lovely richness with moderate carbonation. 4.0
D - For the abv, highly drinkable. 4.5
04-27-2010 14:32:10 | More by DmanGTR
Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord Imperial Stout from Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub
100 out of 100 based on 541 ratings.