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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 bamadog
bamadog

Kentucky

4.47/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was sure to get my sample of this at Dark Lord Day 2010 and thoroughly enjoyed it. Review is from notes taken on 4/24/2010 and poured from the tap to a plastic cup (blasphemy, I know, but it's what they were offering).

Appearance: Comes to me very black and viscous looking (I should note that it's not nearly as thick as the '08 DL that I was able to sample - didn't get to review though as my pour was not quite deep enough to get everything out of it); has about a 1/4 finger of deep dark brown head that fades quickly to nothing other than a thin ring around the surface of the same color; the body is, of course, entirely opaque (I think this actually feeding off of any light around it) and it leaves behind no lacing.

Smell: About what I would expect, actually, and it's awesome. Tons of smoke, wood (with a bit of a sweet vanilla aspect to it from the barrel aging); big alcohol that is a little bourbonesque in nature; lots of dark, burnt and roasty malts and bit of a deep and dark, ripe fruity (cherry?) aspect hiding out in there.

Taste: Pretty much matches the nose to a "T." Lots of that smokey and woody aspect and followed with a hint of sweet vanilla; that big alcohol is definitely present and it's quite hot (I have no idea what year this was made, but if I had to guess I would say it's relatively fresh); again those nice dark, burnt and roasty malts provide tons of flavor and that cherry-like flavor hiding out continues to do so and makes the occasional appearance between the other, more dominant flavors.

Mouthfeel: Thick and creamy, with tons of thick sticky coating holding all over the mouth that allows the nice roasty and bitter flavors to linger for what seems an eternity. In the end, it's a tad gritty, but I like that in a stout, and one of this magnitude certainly does not disappoint.

Drinkability: The flavors and smells alone are enough to keep this high, despite the very present ABV. Also, the mystique and rarity of this beer alone would perhaps keep me coming back for more if it was something that was actually more available. I'm pleased that I got to try it though.

Serving type: on-tap

04-26-2010 18:32:57 | More by bamadog
Photo of abrand
abrand

Illinois

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

Brought to me in line at the 2010 DLD while in line by a very generous gentleman.

The oak aged DL pours jet black with a small ebony head that quickly fades and leaves no lacing. Smell is chocolate, sugar and LOTS of oak. The wood characteristics dominate all other aspects of this beer. The taste is similar to the nose with Oak up front, some chocolate malts and nuts in the middle, followed by a wood finish. Mouthfeel is thick and syrupy. Great tasting stout but I agree with others in that the oak may be just too much. It is a great cousin of Dark Lord but not sure I could handle much more than the small sample I received.

Serving type: on-tap

04-26-2010 03:03:11 | More by abrand
Photo of rhinos00
rhinos00

Colorado

4.33/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Finally got to try this one. On-tap at DLD '10.

A- Poured a dark, chocolate brown color. Looked very thick, like motor oil. Produced minimal amount of head. Dissipated instantly.

S- Sweet malts with molasses. The sweetness in the aroma was very potent. The background had a slight hint of vanilla, bourbon and tons of oak.

T- Much like the aroma, actually exactly like the aroma. Sweetness upfront from various malts and molasses. Some bourbon and vanilla in there as well. The finish was dominated by an overwhelming amount of oak. Really wanted to give this a 4.25, but couldn't...so I rounded up.

M- I loved the mouthfeel of this beer. Thick, chewy and viscous. Coated the palate very well.

D- I'm glad they served this in a small 6 oz. glass (could of been 8 oz.). If I had any more it would have been very difficult to put down.

Overall, a very good beer. That being said, at $9 a pour, I will pass from now on...much better bourbon, oak-aged beers out there at a better value.

Serving type: on-tap

04-26-2010 01:01:53 | More by rhinos00
Photo of levifunk
levifunk

Wisconsin

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

Had this at DLD '10.

I was walking a bit warm by the time I got to try this, but had it a second time side by side with DL. I don't know if I would have been able to compare them unless I had them next to each other. DL is amazing, but the OA is even better. The oak aging does wonders to tone down the sweetness of DL...making it more drinkable IMO.

Serving type: on-tap

04-25-2010 21:44:15 | More by levifunk
Photo of sweemzander
sweemzander

Illinois

4.05/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Had on tap @ DLD 2010! Huge thanks to BeerFMAndy for snagging a glass of this for me!

(A)- Pours thick & black as night. Produced a quickly dissipating brown head.

(S)- A rich dense molasses with a rather potent woody bourbon-like burn

(T)- Rich, with a big woody & bourbon-like sweetness with some dark cocoa & molasses. Very similar to the smell.

(M)- Dense, but thinner than the vanilla bean variation. Has a good carbonation level. A big, almost dry woodiness, yet has a bitterness too from the roasted malts.

(D)- A good stout. Not as successful as their vanilla bean variation in my opinion, but has its own special qualities the other ones do not. Unique and interesting on its own. I would also like to see how this one ages, but yet again, this is only available one day a year!

Serving type: on-tap

04-25-2010 20:20:16 | More by sweemzander
Photo of hooliganlife
hooliganlife

Missouri

4.15/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2010 dark lord day pour

dark as night, no head what so ever, no retention, no lacing, just thick black stout.

tons of oak with subtle hints of vanilla and booze. light scents of dark fruits

mild sweetness, tons of oak which gave off a nice subtle vanilla favor. bits of molasses. the roasted malts took the back seat and the hops were also overpowered by the brute oak flavor.

very thick, a bit syrupy, mouth coating

this was good, very good, but the least favorite of the dark lords. the oak was a bit powerful so too much of this and i would be wanting to move on.

Serving type: on-tap

04-25-2010 01:55:03 | More by hooliganlife
Photo of hawks10
hawks10

Illinois

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

Served on tap at Dark Lord Day 2010...about a 6 ounce pour, enough to give me a good idea about this beer...

Pours just like regular Dark Lord...thick, black, oily and viscous, little bit of dark brown head...

Smells of chocolate, sweet roasted malts, brown sugar, molasses, a bit of vanilla and some bourbon and wood aromas as well...

Tastes just as it smells, chocolate and molasses, some vanilla and bourbon and a tiny bit of drying oak, not much though. Really enjoyed the complexity of this beer and enjoyed the fresh Dark Lord on tap...

Thick and creamy, chewy and coating...full bodied with good carb...

Another winning variation of Dark Lord, slightly prefer the vanilla bean though...

Serving type: on-tap

04-25-2010 00:07:52 | More by hawks10
Photo of pepsican
pepsican

Iowa

3.85/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Thanks to joey and random guy in line for tastings of this. Black as night, no head. Aroma was heavy on the molasses and bourbon. Huge bourbon intro with chocolate, molasses, and alcohol. Finishes very boozy, syrupy. A bit over the top for me, not very drinkable. I had a 4 oz glass and it was a bit too much. Still one of the most flavorful and unique beers I've come across.

Serving type: on-tap

04-19-2010 22:14:03 | More by pepsican
Photo of hrking
hrking

Indiana

4.88/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is the true definition of what a world class stout should be all about. I've had this 3 years in a row now at DLD and it never fail to impress and you will find me in the pub again and again on DLD. Pours a chocolate blackness and delivers everything you could imagine or ever dream of in a stout. Bourbon and oak seem to melt flawlessly into the background of this monster stout that does truly make this a treat to be savored. If there is a flaw it would be that it's not bottled and sold as a one bottle kicker on DLD along with it's standard version. Everything is here oak,vanilla,bourbon,chocolate fudge goodness.. the best way is fresh off the tap but to see this end up bottled would be awesome..Keep up the good work FFF's you started this whole craft beer craze and one off stout release everyone else is copying what FFF's started..the true kings of craft beer!

Serving type: on-tap

12-29-2009 18:31:39 | More by hrking
Photo of kimcgolf
kimcgolf

Georgia

4.6/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at DLD 09. Pour to a jet black with just a hint of brown, a thin dark brown skim of head that lingers well and okay lacing. But it ain't about appearances. Nose was a very potent and pleasant mix of aged wood, pourbon, chocolate, toffee and caramel, and as it warmed, the alcohol snuck in as well. Mouthfeel was full, a tad biting and oily. Taste was the highlight, as it took all the scents of the nose and blended them into a very complex taste where every sip seemed to accentuate a different aspect.

Finish was log, smooth and warming. FFF served this in small cups, which was a good thing, given the various beers to be tasted and the 14% abv.

Serving type: on-tap

08-23-2009 01:05:34 | More by kimcgolf
Photo of fiver29
fiver29

Ohio

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

On tap at Dark Lord Day 08. This is an oak aged version of the 07 batch. Pours a thick black color with a tan head. Has a nice aroma of oak and chocolate. Has complex flavors from bourbon, oak, chocoalte, licorice, and a candy molasses. These flavors blend well together and has a smooth alcohol finish. Nice brew.

Serving type: on-tap

08-21-2009 19:53:55 | More by fiver29
Photo of Deuane
Deuane

Pennsylvania

4.3/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Big thanks to some fine BA's for hooking me up with a pour of this one at Great Taste 2009. I have been waiting to review this for quite sometime after having initially at DLD 2007.

A-Deep, non-light penetrating black. A small, dark tan head dissipates to a thin ring and leaves spotty lace along with remnants of the beer, it being that viscous.

S-Whoa! Like sticking your head into a bourbon barrel filled with Dark Lord! Huge notes of oak, dark chocolate, espresso, dark fruit, toffee, turbinado and vanilla.

T-All the positive qualities of DL with a BIG bourbon pressence....and IMHO too big. FFF is never one to shy away from flavour and they didn't start with this one! I like it, but it's simply too much for me.

M-Full/heavy-bodied and Christ! This may be THE smoothest, creamy and most viscous beer I have ever had. This one slides down like oil. Rich beyond measure with LONG lasting flavours.

D-Certainly a fine brew, but the alcohol and bourbon character is a bit too much for me in this one to drink en masse. I prefer Vanilla DL over the Oaked version.

Serving type: on-tap

08-19-2009 08:33:44 | More by Deuane
Photo of maximum12
maximum12

Minnesota

4.13/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Yet another version of this fine beer.

This one took me by surprise - by oaked, I assumed this beer was "oaked" so the big bourbon slap in the face almost made me cry.

Again, just like the regular Dark Lord in most respects, but with a massive overdosing of barrel aging that's up front & in your cage. Kudos to 3F for trying to improve & tamper with an already great beer, but this one feel just a bit short; the bourbon was over-aggressive for me, drowning out some of the best aspects of the regular Dark Lord. Some of the creaminess was disrupted, & the great towering blade of malts was compromised.

Still a very good beer & one I'd never turn my nose up at, but also a good example of turning a great beer into just a very good one by laying too much of the barrel into the glass.

Serving type: on-tap

08-16-2009 13:35:53 | More by maximum12
Photo of kmeves
kmeves

Wisconsin

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

On tap at GTMW '09: Pours an opache black with a small dissipating tan head. Aroma is strong oak, fruity sweet (plums and raisins) and very rich. Flavor is strong oak yet very sweet with dark fruit, rich chocolate, coffee and a nice undertone of flower, herbs and grapefruit. Finish is very long and warm with molasses and dark fruit. Large bodied, quite a bit more alcohol apparent than the non oak version. Still one of the best beers I have ever tasted.

Serving type: on-tap

08-11-2009 17:54:42 | More by kmeves
Photo of alcstradamus
alcstradamus

Washington

4.65/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled at the 2009 Great Taste of the Midwest

Pours like liquid sludge, when I was finished with this I couldn't even pour the remaining few drops out because they were stuck to the walls of the glass like maple syrup. Huge dark fruit nose just like regular Dark Lord, with the oak also being prominent. Taste was very sweet, the oak stands out and unfortunately has a bit of a harshness to it, so I couldn't rate the taste a 5. Full bodied and thick, I prefer the regular Dark Lord to this version though just because of the harshness. My 3 oz. was more than enough to satisfy.

UPDATE 4/26: Had a chance to try the newest batch of this beer and I must say, it was MUCH better this year. The harshness from the oak was gone, and all the flavors melded together very well. I'm still not sure it is an improvement on the base beer, but it is good enough that I have to bump the taste score up to a 5

Serving type: on-tap

08-09-2009 18:09:45 | More by alcstradamus
Photo of alleykatking
alleykatking

Indiana

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

Finally getting around to reviewing my notes from DLD. Had on tap of course!

A- Pours a thick dark motor oil black color. I held this up to the light and it had no accent to it at all....just dark black. It had about a half finger mocha/tan head that wasn't very impressive and went down rather quickly. Lacing was sticky on the sides of the glass but I think regular DL beats this one out in the appearance catagory.

S- This has the same highlights as the DL with the coffee and chocolate I think dominating along with some darker fruits and something else I can't place my finger on. Some distinct oak and bourbony undertones come and go when I sniff at this along with faint vanillia aromas as well. This beer is making my mouth water just smelling it.

T- Big oaky...bourbon taste right upfront that powers with the chocolate and coffee taste of the DL. The balance is maybe a little off but that is only opinion. I get hints of the vanillia blending almost perfect with a brown sugar taste I get. This beer is big and it knows it. A heavy hitter with different tastes around every turn. Can taste the alcohol a little more with this one.

M- This is a heavy hitting mouthfeel. Not a huge carbonation leaves this beer knocking on your palate until you force it to leave. Leaves a nice amount oaky, coffee, chocolate taste on the tounge. This beer feels good in the mouth still after being so big and heavy.

D- This beer is sadly for me a one beer and move onto the next for me. It is good but so damn heavy that it feels like I'm drinking a meal. Plus there was two other DL's I had to try while I was talking with friends.

Serving type: on-tap

07-08-2009 21:54:09 | More by alleykatking
Photo of Steamhead
Steamhead

Kentucky

4.15/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The '09 was, in my opinion, a step down from the regular Dark Lord and two steps down from Vanilla Bean Dark Lord. This seem the least polished of the three. The nose was hotter, the mouthfeel had lost some of the rich creaminess in exchange for a bitter wood tannin, and just did not leave a great impression. Still a solid beer that most breweries would sell their soul to produce, but for the perfection that is expected with Three Floyds it was good, but not great.

Serving type: on-tap

05-14-2009 11:35:53 | More by Steamhead
Photo of Kegatron
Kegatron

Pennsylvania

4.72/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap @ the Three Floyds brewpub on 4/25/09 during DLD. Served in a snifter.

Pours as black as an oil slick into the glass with a burnt and charred mocha colored tan head. Standard D look for this, except that the head looks a tad thin and more foamy than the regular Dark Lord. The aroma is just thick with bourbon warmth and pervasive accents of wood and vanilla that lie on top of the RIS notes of chocolate, coffee, molasses, and dark fruit tang, giving an extra level of hugeness to this bouqet. Wow, this is big in the nose!

The taste starts with massive barrel notes of boozy bourbon and oaky accents that is more than an equal for the massive sweetness and roast of the Dark Lord. The bourbon never seems to get overpowering to me because the original flavor profile was so huge to begin with. Finishes with a tangy, boozy, and dry feel that warms the palate and sticks in the mouth. The mouthfeel is hugely chewy and viscous with most of the heat from the beer appearing to come more from the bourbon notes and less from the ABV of the body itself. A warming, steady sipper here.

Well there's certainly nothing understated about this beer. Bourbon-aged Dark Lord is what you want and bourbon-aged Dark Lord is what you GET! Luckily I greatly enjoy both and found a good balance between the two aspects, despite just the overall mammoth flavors and strength going on here. I greatly enjoyed this.

Serving type: on-tap

05-06-2009 17:01:47 | More by Kegatron
Photo of coldmeat23
coldmeat23

Oklahoma

4.88/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

GLASS: Snifter
TEMP: approx 45 - 50 degrees
VINTAGE 2009 (Had @ DLD)

Much like Dark Lord, this one is solid black. It has a small head of tan foam that dissipates to a ring aound the edge of the surface. Lacing is a touch better than the 'regular' version, but still not very much. It's still very thick and viscous, sliding down the sides of the glass.

This is where it steps out away from it's brother. Nice big oakiness joins the chocolate and coffee notes. Dark fruits are still present, just a little more subdued. Wonderful bourbon-like notes. The vanilla is brought a little more forward. Nice caramel toffee notes.

Taste follows the 'regular' version, as well. This one brings along nice notes of charred oak, vanilla and bourbon. Molasses comes forward a touch. Lots of brown sugar notes. Slight hint of tobacco.
The oak aging really mellows the flavor profile out, making this one not nearly as sweet as the 'regular' version and giving it a drier finish.

While this one is still full-bodied and creamy and yes, thick, it loses just a touch, comparatively. If I weren't comparing it to it's brother it would score perfect anyway, but this one is slightly less, in that sense. In the 'regular' DL review, I said it deserved to be rated with a 7 for mouthfeel. This one still deserves a 6.

While this beer is incredible and totally worth the wait to get the chance to try it, I think that I actually prefer the 'regular' DL just slightly better. That shocks me, because I love barrel-aged brews, in general. I just like the big, bold, malty sweetness in the other one, which is toned down in this one.
Also, the booziness is more prominent in this one, which is not a bad thing, but it's better when you don't know that it's there.

Serving type: on-tap

05-01-2009 17:37:49 | More by coldmeat23
Photo of brewdlyhooked13
brewdlyhooked13

Ohio

4.8/5  rDev +5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed on-tap at DLD.

Poured in a little plastic cup, I would have transferred it to my sampling glass but a few of us bought several glasses of each to pass around, so it stayed in the plastic.

The stuff is rich and black, just a wisp or two of mocha around the edge.

It smells richly of roasted malts, espresso, and the with the certainty of oak. Not as stunning as the vanilla variant but good in its own right.

Tastes like Dark Lord would - rich with dark malt and bitter chocolate, but with an oak edge that is very nice. The wood pushes the sweetness of the beer back a little, providing some nice balance. Lots of espresso and booziness on the swallow, and a long finish of the same. The thickness of the beer helps it hang around, also subduing carbonation somewhat.

An awesome part of the day, we had one and ordered three more.

Serving type: on-tap

05-01-2009 02:16:25 | More by brewdlyhooked13
Photo of Damian
Damian

Massachusetts

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

Drank on-tap at Dark Lord Day 2009
Served in a plastic cup

The beer poured super thick and dense, like used motor oil. Not a ray of light penetrated this sludgy mass. A small, frothy, clingy, coffee-colored head capped the liquid.

The aroma was simply amazing. Sweet, robust and complex with strong indications of oak and bourbon. Lots of vanilla-like sweetness. Some brown sugar and caramel notes appeared as well. Boozy without being overly alcoholic.

The taste was just as astounding as the smell. Sweet, rich malts came through strong up front. Coffee-like. Deep and dark yet super smooth and not overly roasty. Bourbon and molasses were also noticeable. Lots of vanilla and oak too. Dark fruits appeared in the center. The lingering finish was oaky and whiskey-like. Brown sugar notes were apparent. Overall, incredibly interesting and quite complex.

The mouthfeel was ridiculously good. Ultra-heavy and creamy with a fine, mild carbonation. If there is a more rich and dense brew out there, I have yet to try it.

Drinkability was simply off the charts. The beer was incredibly smooth and balanced. Sweet for the style without being cloying. At 15% ABV, it drank like something half its strength.

This beer alone made my 1,000 mile journey to Dark Lord Day 2009 worth it. Simply put, Oak Aged Dark Lord Imperial Stout is the best beer to ever pass my lips.

Serving type: on-tap

05-01-2009 01:07:55 | More by Damian
Photo of SykDoc
SykDoc

Wisconsin

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

Had on tap at DLD '09 and reviewing notes.

Poured into a plastic cup. It pours a thick, motor oil black. A minimal dark brown head forms and quickly reduces to almost nothing. The left over oil slick on the glass is great.

The aroma was fantastic. There were nice levels of oak mixed with the usual suspects of intense dark chocolate and sweet malts. There was also a nice mixture of tobacco. Mild coffee notes.

The flavor was fantastic. This was a nice blend of the standard dark lord with a healthy, but not overwhelming oak taste along with a pleasant bourbon that rounds out the complexity.

The mouthfeel as expected, thick and smooth. It has a low level of carbonation that highlights the flavor superbly. Full bodied and somewhat sticky at the finish with a nice level lingering on the tongue.

This was fantastic. I love Dark Lord and this is comparable and I believe I am actually rating it better. I would love to compare this head to head with the original. It is very drinkable and about the only thing that may hinder drinkability is the strength but I will getting my hands on this again in the future, extremely good.

Serving type: on-tap

04-30-2009 01:24:21 | More by SykDoc
Photo of mikesgroove
mikesgroove

South Carolina

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

A huge thanks goes out to an unnamed BA who helped me out with this one. Quite possibly the biggest think on my bucket list of beers. I have been waiting far too long to try this one. Served chilled and poured into a pint glass.

The pour was black as night. Small head of tan faded quickly leaving behind only the slightest bit of brown clinging to the sides of the glass. Seriously black as night on the pour here though with an intensly dark look to it. The aroma was wonderful. Tons of oak notes here hit you first with the sweet molasses and tobacco notes following up nicely. Smooth, subtle and wonderfully complex flavor here. Not the harsh oak, I found this to be very close in flavor to the 03 BA speedway, mature would be the best word for how it tasted. Really very well done. Very sweet tasting, especially on the finish here with notable light vanilla touches that mingled well with the oak notes and really full feel on this one, about as thick and creamy as a beer can get. Alcohol noted, but not overwhelming.

Overall this was soo worth the wait for me. A wonderfully complex beer that was accented perfectly. A different beast the the DL itself, this is something I would love to see come around much more often.

Serving type: on-tap

04-30-2009 00:54:17 | More by mikesgroove
Photo of Beerkovich
Beerkovich

Illinois

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

This would be my favorite beer of all time if it weren't recently dethroned by its brother, Vanillabean. One of the best liquids on the planet. Every year I build it up, but it just never ceases to blow me away.

Appearance: black tar, with a thin mocha head that soon dissipates into psychedelic swirls--coats the sides of the cup with a translucent film that does not budge. LOOK AT IT!!!

Nose: HAHAHAAA!!! All I can do is laugh. What kind of BEER is this?!?! Toasted oak, bourbon, molasses, vanilla, butter toffee, still a trace of dark fruit, and then just so much more that I just can't even describe--maybe the byproducts of yeast reactions that I don't understand--I don't know.

Flavor: Holy god. This stuff brings tears to your eyes. It just makes you shake your head and wonder how the hell something like this is even made by humans. This is in the same tier as Napa reserve cabernets and Ardbeg single malts. In the words of my Uncle, upon trying it for the first time two years ago, "HOLY SHIT THERE ARE FLAVORS FLYING AT ME FROM ALL OVER THE PLACE!!!" Again, dark chocolate, buttery charred oak, bourbon, vanilla, intelligentsia espresso, yeast flavors, mineral flavors, molasses, port, fruit, but listing these words simply do not do it justice. A lot of oak aged beers have a similar flavor profile to this....but just do not even approach the mind-boggling sophistication of this elixir. Astoundingly good.

Mouthfeel: Heavenly. Like a mature, top-tier wine or a mature, barrel strength whiskey--oily, viscous, creamy, silky,....but way heavier!

Drinkability: what more can I say? I still vividly recall the first time I tried this at Dark Lord Day '06. I had never tried any version of DL before, and while waiting in line to pick up my bottles, a friend of a friend walked up to me and handed me the rest of his cup and I swear I do not remember anything that happened for the next five minutes. Time slowed down, others' voices became distant...I had an out of body experience. All I could do was shake my head, flail my arms, and grin like an idiot.

And as others have attested, somehow the vanilla bean version is better...so do I have to change one of my 5's to 4.5?

Serving type: on-tap

04-29-2009 23:57:05 | More by Beerkovich
Photo of nrbw23
nrbw23

Ohio

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

A- Looks just like the regular DL. Pitch black with a brown head.

S- Smells like the normal DL with a more bourbon, nutty and wood smell. I think this one smells good.

T- Follows the regular version with a bigger bourbon taste and nice amount of wood as well.

M- Huge and thick and low carbonation.

D- Sipper just like all the other Dark Lords and easy to drink.

I had all three of these pretty much back to back and gonna give the edge to the vanilla bean but I don't think you could go wrong with any of them. Nice work!

Scored a couple of glasses of this beast again at DLD '10 and its a great brew.

Serving type: on-tap

04-29-2009 18:51:01 | More by nrbw23
Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord Imperial Stout from Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brewpub
100 out of 100 based on 470 ratings.