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Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord (Pappy Van Winkle) - 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord (Pappy Van Winkle)Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord (Pappy Van Winkle)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
97
world-class

51 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 51
Hads: 140
rAvg: 4.51
pDev: 7.1%
Wants: 482
Gots: 37 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
3 Floyds Brewing Co. visit their website
Indiana, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  15.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: HopHead84 on 06-25-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

The 2011 bottled vintage of Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord was aged exclusively in Pappy Van Winkle barrels. All draft and other bottle vintages (2006 swing-tops, 2012 bottles) should be reviewed here -  http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/26/30184 
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 51 | Hads: 140
Photo of mdfb79
4.77/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Fromm 01/14/12 notes. Huge thanks to Dreadnaught33 for sharing this one; thanks Jonathan! Tried it side by side with the base beer and the other three variants with some friends. I liked this version the second best, after the Vanill Brandy. Poured from a 750ml bottle into a snifter. Bottle 342/484.

a - Pours a pitch black color with one inch of dark tan head and low carbonation evident. Looks like the normal version and all the other variants.

s - Smells of sweet bourbon, roasted malts, sweet dark fruits, oak, light vanilla, sweet chocolate, dark chocolate, and toasted malts. An awesome nose here, it's really perfect. One of the best smalling BBA stouts I've smelled.

t - Tastes of bourbon, vanilla, wood, sweet chocolate, roasted malts, sweet dark fruits, brandy, aok, dark chocolate, toasted malts. Very, very awesome taste. Nice bourbon here; close to a 5 for me.

m - Full bodied stout and low carbonation. Body is thick and creamy; pretty perfect for a big RIS.

o - Overall I thought this was a fantasic stout. The nose is pretty perfect, and though I rated the Vanilla Brandy slightly higher, this is right there with it. I think the nose here is better while I liked the VB taste better. I think the nose on this one is closer to the original Dark Lord, as I get more sweet dark fruits here, and obviously has less vanilla than the Vanilla Brandy version. Really great, would love to have it again. (1,418 characters)

Photo of yourefragile
4.57/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22 oz yellow waxed bottle, thanks to Mr. Dreadnaught33 for sharing!

Pours a viscous, oily dark brown with a thin light tan head. Aroma is sweet, decadent and smooth with vanilla, bourbon, oak with molasses and brown sugar from the base and very subtle alcohol heat. Oily, chewy body in the front with a silky bourbon presence throughout and a slightly dry, oaky finish. The PvW barrel sweetness complements the normally sweet Dark Lord base without becoming overwhelming or causing fatigue. Easily my favorite of the Dark Lord variants, but still did not quite reach the level of Rare or PvW Eclipse for me. (608 characters)

Photo of drabmuh
4.72/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Served along side the other barreled variants of this beer and a 2010 Dark Lord, all served in a Dark Lord snifter because I am capable of this. Thanks to everyone that provided bottles for this. Once in a lifetime sort of thing. This was also my favorite out of all the variants.

Beer is dark brown with nearly no head, no lacing, low carbonation.

Aroma is sweet, oaky, bourbon, strong, nice.

The beer is medium to heavy in body on the front half but the back half of the beer falls flat, thins out giving way to a nice slightly drier tannic finish, the sweetness and booziness from the barrel pops in the midpalate, dominating the normal candy sweetness of the Dark Lord base, rounding it out to a phenomenal beer. (719 characters)

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.85/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Barrel-Aged Dark Lord tasting! Thanks to all the guys in the tasting group who helped make this happen.

The beer is very dark brown with a small beige head. Great aroma with inviting bourbon scents. So subtle, delicate, and smooth. Wow. Effortless to drink. Where is the alcohol?!? I could easily sit in my cabin in the woods with of keg of this and sip the night away. Silky smooth feel. World class beer. One of the best bourbon barrel stouts I have ever had. My highest recommendation. (489 characters)

Photo of Dreadnaught33
4.69/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

342/484, was super fortunate to get this at dark lord day! Tried next to all variants from last release, what an extreme blessing.

A: the beer has a really great black color with brown edges and really not too much head at all or lacing, but it looks very thick, viscous and inviting, almost like a black black spirit.

S: This must be the most balanced smelling bourbon imperial stout I've smelled, it strikes such an amazing balance of th amazing complex bourbon spirit, oaky vanilla and earth, and then some great roasty molasses notes from the dark lord base. The is a little heat but it really only accents the amazing complex spirit and beer smells that seem to be perfectly mingled.

T/M: the taste does not disappoint and adds on top of the smell a load of dark fruit, leather, some more molasses, raisin, and a little more vanilla. A really nice complex taste, but it isn't quite as big as the aroma, though it does have flutters of the bourbon and oak that certainly come through. Amazingly, it has no heat and has plenty of viscous body that flows over the palate smoothly. Very nice.

Overall this beer is certainly a winner, what a great beer. (1,159 characters)

Photo of John_M
4.64/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The belle of the ball at the finewinemike tasting, and one of the more amazing beers I've ever tried.

The beer pours a blackish brown color with fairly good head retention and minimal lacing. This is a beer that appears to have undergone CONSIDERABLE barrel aging. On the nose... whoof! I pick up a huge aroma of bourbon, roaty malt, milk chocolate, light coffee, vanilla and cherry. The flavor profile replicates the nose, and if anything is even more impressive. There is a light, seamless quality that I rarely see in a beer, and the array of flavors in this beer is complimented very well by the excellent bourbon flavor. You can sort of tell that some exceptionally fine bourbon went into the making of this beer. The mouthfeel is also very fine in this beer, as the finish is so, so smooth and long, with the richness buoyed nicely by the bourbon.

Just an altogether fantastic beer. The high alcohol is noticeable, but in no way detracts from the quality. It was an absolute privilege and a treat to sample this beer at the tasting. (1,041 characters)

Photo of oline73
4.8/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I had this at the epic tasting last weekend held at finewinemike's. Poured from the bottle into a Colossus snifter.

Appearance: Pours black with just a little light coming through at the edges. There is hardly any head at all on this one.

Smell: Sweet and chalked full of roasted malt. There is some dark chocolate as well as vanilla and caramel. Really smooth bourbon in there as well.

Taste: Just amazing. Really smooth, the bourbon and the roast mix flawlessly. Also getting some caramel, dark fruit, and chocolate notes as well.

Mouthfeel: The body is quite thick with just a tingle of carbonation and a slightly dry finish.

Overall: This is so much better than the base beer. The barrel aging has done amazing things to this beer. I would have this one again anytime, but I'm not so sure I'll get the chance. (818 characters)

Photo of mothman
4.77/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks Andrew for this one! 371/484

Pours very little head. Color is a deep brown black.

Aroma: Amazing bourbon notes. Rich chocolate with sweet vanilla and caramel. Cocoa powder. Molasses and dark fruits in the background. Oaky. Stunning.

Taste: Brown sugar and molasses. Warming bourbon with oak and vanilla. The -bals are fantastic. Chocolate and dark fruits. A light roast. Fantastic.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, warming, and creamy. Full bodied with a light to medium amount of carbonation. Ends clean.

Overall, a very tasty beer. One of the best. Very drinkable. Those pvw barrels did wonders to dl. This was incredible. (622 characters)

Photo of Chriscrundwell12
4.65/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle split with many BA's at the Darkness Eve tasting, thanks to Andrew for sharing this.

A- Pours a dark black color, very opaque, thin brown layer of head around the glass, no lacing, typical appearance for a Dark Lord beer.
S- The aroma makes my mouth water, really nice bourbon and vanilla upfront, very slight coffee presence, caramel, toffee, brown sugar, slight dark fruits, the aroma is not in your face but rather mild as it warms up, can’t wait to try this bad boy.
T- Wow is my first impression, really smooth, velvety smooth, the bourbon and vanilla really come out in this beer, sweet caramel, sweet toffee, slight chocolate, dark fruits (raisins, plums) pretty complex, some oak and roasted malt in the finish, really well balanced.
M- Big mouth feel, coats the palate, smooth and silky, not too much carbonation but just the right amount, sticky, dry finish.
O- This beer lived up to the hype, really smooth, complex, well balanced, not too hot, the alcohol is definitely present but does not take over the beer, really impressive, absolutely loved it. (1,072 characters)

Photo of kbutler1
4.5/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle. Courtesy of Andrew, thanks man! Pours a pitch black color with a light tan head. Molasses, caramel, bourbon but pretty slight aroma. Heavy mouthfeel. Vanilla, molasses, caramel, roast, dark chocolate, and bourbon all really well incorporated in this one. Rich and velvety mouthfeel. What is there else to say? As this beer has a lot of hype around it is easy to see how it might not live up to expectations, but this beer really hits the mark. It smooth and complex without being to one sided and unbalanced. The barrel aging added an extra depth that really for me makes this a worthwhile beer. Just excellent. (619 characters)

Photo of spdyfire83
4.8/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

35th Review
Bottle to snifter.
Bottle 109/484

Thanks to Brian (deadmule) for sharing at our epic DL Variant & Other Ticks Tasting in Chicago! Stoked to try this one.

L: Jet black with a few bubble on light/medium pour. From the tasting group, there was not a significant amount of head, even on a vigorous pour. Such goes life because this beer looks awesome!

S: Slight hint of dark chocolate with a subtle hint of Pappy. Reminds me of a glass of 20 year old Pappy that I shared with a generous BA in Denver a while back. Either way, it smells delightful and basic – not overly complex, but I’m ready to drink after a dozen or so smells.

T: Strong fig and dark raisin flavor up-front. A slight hint of chocolate mid-palate, but just right. Smooth, long finish of sweet bourbon at the back – this was my favorite part of the entire experience. Not hot, but just right. Pure and fantastic!

M: Medium carbonation with a very, very smooth finish.

O: One word…awesome! I don’t really like Bourbon, but this beer is so well-balanced and smooth. Not overly complex, but just right. I think had it spent any more time in the barrel it would have been too much for me; however, I also think this thing will age well. Wish I had another bottle to age and try again in the future because this was definitely my favorite of all the variants. Standing ovation! (1,363 characters)

Photo of Florida9
4.32/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Viscous black. Forms a trace of dark tan head that is little more than a thin surface coating that quickly dissipates to absolute nothingness.

S: Bourbon, then light vanilla and an unexpectedly strong scent of coffee. Dark malts, raisin, and molasses.

T: Incredibly smooth. Moderate sweetness. Roasted malts, molasses, raisin, fig and a little butterscotch on the finish.

M: Smooth and moderately viscous. Heavy body, but not as thick as expected. Low carbonation.

O: A very good, very smooth RIS. Quite complex, but the barrel aging is a nice complement to the beer, adding in complexity and rounding it out nicely. Not at all boozy. (645 characters)

Photo of iadler
4.5/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First bottle we crack open for our awesome tasting. Big thanks to deadmule for bringing this. Poured into my Duck Rabbit Snifter. Bottle #109/484

A- Pours a dark black with a small mocha head that dissipates quick leaving no lacing.

S- Bourbon warms the nostrils, dark fruits including plumb, figs, raisins, dark chocolate, oak and roasted malt. Smells great, but the ABV makes itself known.

T- Much smoother than the nose suggested with sweet earthy bourbon, plumb, fig, raisins as well as dark berries with notes of blackberries and black cherries. Oak and roasted malt follow.

M- Medium body and low carbonation. A tad thin for what I was expecting, but has a syrupy mouthfeel that finishes a tad boozy and sweet.

O- Remarkably smooth for a 15% beer. A great sipper and one of my favorites out of the 4 variants, with the other being the vanilla brandy.

Thanks Brian! (878 characters)

Photo of coreyfmcdonald
4.8/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22oz bottle served with the other versions and 2004-2011.

A: Like the others, completely black with small amount of very dark head.

S: Sweet chocolate with coconut and light bourbon flavor. Very well integrated bourbon.

T: Chocolate and vanilla with light coconut and bourbon. Light roast to balance. Everything in the perfect proportions. Amazing.

M: Thick mouthfeel, good carbonation. This added to the flavor for sure.

O: Perfect mix of roast, vanilla, chocolate, and bourbon. (484 characters)

Photo of womencantsail
4.15/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to a very, very generous Jeff for sharing this at Woodshop.

A: The beer pours thick and black, not much head on it. Sort of like regular Dark Lord.

S: Lots of bourbon and vanilla with an intense sweetness that only Dark Lord can achieve. Brown sugar, molasses, chocolate, and dark fruits with a hint of nuts and maple syrup.

T: Like the nose, intensely sweet with all sorts of different sugar notes: molasses, brown sugar, toffee, caramel, and maple syrup. There's lots of chocolate, bourbon, and vanilla, too with plenty of dark fruit.

M: Thick, syrupy, and lowly carbonated.

O: The bourbon helps to take off the edge of the Dark Lord. Pretty good beer. (666 characters)

Photo of emmasdad
4.47/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Schmittymack for making this one happen; Thanks as well to Ken, Josh and especially Ratman for making this easy. Poured a nice almost opaque black color with a lingering ring of brown foam. Aromas of bourbon, alcohol, pepper, molasses, vanilla, oak, maple, dark chocolate, rarity and dried fruit. Palate was medium to full bodied and smooth with a warming finish. Flavors of bourbon, maple, vanilla, mollasses, rarity, chocolate, dried fruit and light licorice with a smooth warming lingering bourbon finish. Enjoyed with a snifter of 23 year old Pappy Van Winkle! (574 characters)

Photo of brew3crew
4.35/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had at stoutfest. big thanks to Evan for this one!

A-pitch black with no head.

S-Slightly bourbon but in a good way. not too overpowering

T-sweet and subtle bourbon that washes down so smooth and makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside. Not overpowering

m-Medium body and oh so smooth

o-very good beer. Wish I could have more, but I will settle for the three different tastes that got poured for me! (400 characters)

Photo of TurdFurgison
4.47/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I tried this courtesy of agentzero (thanks Mike!) during a tasting of all the bottled BA Dark Lord variants. This was bottle #268.

It pours dark and thick, like all Dark Lords. Big bourbon notes in the aroma, quite similar to BCS Rare but more sweet smelling. But whatever, both are pretty bad-ass bruisers.

It tastes chocolaty and rich, with a really nice PVW element reminiscent of Rare or PVW Eclipse. Very sweet (obviously), and that coupled with the thick body make this a sipper, sort of a dessert beer. I liked it a lot, and it looks like I'll have a chance to try it again soon which I'm happy about. (611 characters)

Photo of yeahnatenelson
4.47/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Blue Lion - 2011 BA Dark Lord Voltron Tasting, 07/15/2011.

Appearance -- Pours a deep dark brown with no head and chestnut highlights. Good color, but appears to be still.

Smell -- Delightfully vibrant nose full of decadent bourbon, chocolate cake, as well as some coffee and, in the distance, dark fruits. The Pappy Van Winkle really makes the difference.

Taste -- The first thing that stands out is that delightful Pappy Van Winkle bourbon: gently sweet and - surprisingly - with a little bit of bite. The bourbon really seems to bring out the roast malt and chocolate flavors more than the dark fruits. Coffee still finds a way to come out in this version more than the other three. Delightful.

Mouthfeel -- Thick with softer carbonation. A little bit of bourbon bite, which seems slightly out of character for being aged in PVW 23, but very gentle overall. Nicely warms the throat.

Overall -- This was great. The Pappy flavor married well with Dark Lord. Easily in my top-five bourbon barrel-aged imperial stouts, but compared to the other versions this wasn't terribly interesting.

Additional Notes: It's not as good as Rare Bourbon County Stout, but pretty close considering RBCS had an extra year in the casks to develop and mellow. (1,245 characters)

Photo of jale
4.3/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Mike(Agentzero) for this.

A: Pours black with little head.

S: Bourbon, chocolate, oak and dark sugar.

T: Bourbon upfront followed by sweet chocolate, oak and a hint of vanilla. Slightly more alcohol heat then the others but still not what you expect from this much ABV

M: Thick body.

O: Such a great beer. Would love more. (341 characters)

Photo of largadeer
4.67/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle generously shared by Mike/AgentZero.

Pitch black, somewhat oily appearance with a thin brown head. Clings impressively to the walls of the cheap plastic cup I drank it out of.

Sweet, mellow bourbon and chocolate are the first thing my nose picks up. The Pappy barrel did good work here, lending overt but smooth bourbon tones. Plenty of caramel and molasses, vanilla and chocolate. Just a touch of booze.

This tastes rather awesome, possibly the best of all the barrel aged Dark Lords. Incredibly smooth and integrated bourbon, lending layers of caramel and vanilla, paired with molasses and chocolate from the base beer. Very sweet, basically dessert in a glass, but it's hard to imagine a barrel aged stout tasting much better.

Couldn't drink a ton of this due to the sheer richness of it, but it's remarkably good in small quantities. (849 characters)

Photo of AgentZero
4.42/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Won with scratch-off ticket at DLD. Bottle #268 of #484.

A - Black as night with a brown head. some great legs.

S - A big, bad beer meets the ultimate in spirits. Lovely decadent chocolate, bourbon, molasses, coffee and smooth bourbon.

T - This beer is awesome. Someone told me to let it sit for a bit as it was hot, but it's good to go as is. Taste is right along with the nose, the bourbon is smooth, the beer is rich with everything you would look for. Would love to do this side-by-side with Rare BCS or PVW Eclipse.

M - Once again, full bodied, smooth and silky, lower carbonation.

O - Fantastic beer, this one was a close second to the Brandy Dark Lord between all the variants, but you can't go wrong with either one. A great experience, I hope to get more somehow. (777 characters)

Photo of MasterSki
4.47/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Mike (AgentZero) for this one.

A - Looks like the rest of them. Thin tan foam settles to a ring of bubbles, leaving spotty lace.

S - It's like oak-aged Dark Lord, except without the harsh oak and alcohol. Plenty of bourbon flavor, oaky vanilla, caramel, and chocolate fudge. A dessert of a beer.

T - Chocolate fudge, cake, smooth bourbon, oaky vanilla, and some light espresso bitterness in the finish to keep things from getting too saccharine cloying. Again, an improvement over oak-aged Dark Lord as there is much less harsh oak and booze.

M - Same as the rest - "Pretty low carbonation, and this is unsurprisingly sticky, viscous, and full-bodied. Some light warmth in the finish, but otherwise the alcohol is very well-hidden, particularly as this must approach 16-17 after the barrel-aging."

D - It's like BCS Rare, but harder to get and slightly more expensive. A supremely enjoyable beer that will likely get overshadowed due to its rarer and more exotic brethren. I'm looking forward to the day my wife opens her bottle. (1,044 characters)

Photo of Thorpe429
4.17/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle #268/484. Big thanks to AgentZero for contributing this one. Consumed at Sean's 30th Birthday Party Extravaganza. Served in a Three Floyds / Intelligentsia snifter.

Pours black with a thin mocha-colored head. Some legs and a few spots of lacing on the way down. Thin collar throughout. The nose brings a fairly-heavy bourbon presence, though not as much of the spirit as the Brandy version had. Oak and some light vanillin in the background plus some heavy chocolate. Really smooth integration between the base and the barrel character.

The flavor picks up much more booze than the nose did, though not too much. Good Pappy character. Rich and smooth. Somewhat creamy. Lots of brown sugar and smooth chocolate. Full body and pretty creamy with a moderate amount of booze. Low carbonation. Really enjoyable. This and the Brandy version tie for second in my book. (870 characters)

Photo of Sean9689
4.17/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle #266/484 (I think) generously shared by AgentZero at my 30th Birthday Party Extravaganza. Poured into a taster.

A - Looks like Dark Lord. Black, tan mocha-colored head, thin collar, some whisps on top.

S - Bourbon, oak, chocolate, burnt sugars, brownies. The Pappy is there for sure, very smooth and not overly done. The base beer works well with the oak and booze notes. I think it's an understatement that Pappy works well with a good base stout.

T - The booze is more apparent here then any of the other BA variants. Nice chocolate, molasses, bourbon, oak, and burnt sugars. Bourbon and Dark Lord go well together, who woulda thunk? Very enjoyable, perhaps a bit syrupy and slightly hot.

M - Full, rich, creamy, very slight carbonation.

O - PVW + DL is good, can you believe it? Perhaps not as good as I thought because I hyped myself up for this beer, but very enjoyable. The booze is slightly hot but not 15% hot. Another winner from the BA Dark Lord variants. Recommend. (989 characters)

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Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord (Pappy Van Winkle) from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
97 out of 100 based on 51 ratings.