1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Bourbon Barrel Stout - Odell Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Bourbon Barrel StoutBourbon Barrel Stout

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

338 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 338
Reviews: 187
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 19.13%
Wants: 147
Gots: 101 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Odell Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  11.50% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Imperial Stout aged in Buffalo Trace and Old Fitzgerald bourbon barrels. 2011 batch was aged in Stranahan's barrels.

(Beer added by: waltonc on 09-12-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Bourbon Barrel Stout Alström Bros
Ratings: 338 | Reviews: 187 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of I2uss
5/5  rDev +27.6%

I2uss, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of thewimperoo
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%

thewimperoo, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of Alpar
4/5  rDev +2%

Alpar, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of SalukiAlum
3/5  rDev -23.5%

SalukiAlum, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of Huhzubendah
3.43/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by Darrell. Thanks man.

The beer is dark brown with an inch of khaki colored head. Ample lacing left on the tulip. The aroma brings some malt with a musty, yeast character. The scent is generally pretty weak. Unusual, though not off putting. While the beer is not bad, this is without question a beverage that has been invaded by wild bacteria. Light tartness and mild sourness with hints of roast. Sweet and sour cherries. Bourbon presence is secondary to wild yeast flavors. Not at all what one should expect from an imperial stout. If the style category was changed to American wild ale, this beer would make more sense. Overall, interesting, and worth a try, especially if you're a fan of both stouts and sour ales.

Huhzubendah, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of JAHMUR
4/5  rDev +2%

JAHMUR, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of matttttYCE
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured into my Stone snifter, this beer is super dark black, no highlights. Head is pretty bubbly/somewhat rocky, very high, 2 fingers, barely receding at all, and light tan in color. Lace is substantial.

S - Aroma is pretty light in general. Notes of dark roasted malts, sweet milk chocolate, vanilla, roasted coffee beans/espresso, caramel, a bit of wood/oak, lighter but noticeable bourbon aroma and bourbon spice, and a bit of root beer. I think it takes some decent warming for most of the aromas to come out. Once it warms, the vanilla, caramel, oak, bourbon, chocolate, and coffee not only come out a bit more but they meld together very nicely to form one of the nicer smelling Bourbon barrel aged Stouts I've smelled that's lighter on the bourbon.

T - Taste is much the same as the aroma. Light but with notes of sweet milk chocolate, light but present roasted malts, caramel, vanilla, root beer, more chocolate, hints of bitter dark chocolate, bourbon, and oak. Taste doesn't open up as much as the aroma did after warming. Taste really doesn't bowl me over that much, for as nice as the aroma smelled, especially after it warmed a bit. Above average I would say.

M - Carbonation is a bit high for an imperial stout and detracts from the brew a bit in my opinion. Consistency is almost viscous, body is a bit higher than medium, and the finish is light and fairly short-lived.

O - A good barrel aged stout overall, but certainly not one that I'm really going to write home about. Carbonation hurts it in the mouthfeel section and somewhat in the taste. The aroma really led to a disappointment in taste.

matttttYCE, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of Abrengle
5/5  rDev +27.6%

Abrengle, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of IpeeA
4/5  rDev +2%

IpeeA, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of tbeq00
5/5  rDev +27.6%

tbeq00, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of Adamostella
4/5  rDev +2%

Adamostella, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of seth72104
5/5  rDev +27.6%

seth72104, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of Jspriest
4.75/5  rDev +21.2%

Jspriest, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of jmdrpi
2.3/5  rDev -41.3%
look: 5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

750mL corked and caged bottle. 5036-2011 is on the label.

almost black, massive thick tan colored head that leaves bid clumps of lacing, with great retention.

the aroma is not was is expected. instead of bourbon or roasted malt, I get maybe some malt, raisin, and a bit of black cherry.
taste is similar, a bit tart and dry in the finish. none of the flavors indicated on the bottle label (chocolate, vanilla, coffee, oak, caramel) show up at all.

smooth, but still significant carbonation. expected to be thicker.

overall, a big miss for the style. maybe some QC issues?
Unfortunately after I took the trouble of flying this bottle back from a trip to Colorado, I read about infection issues with this beer. So I drank right away. Can't say for certain if some wild yeast is talking hold or not. It's not bad, but not good. certainly not worth the price tag.

jmdrpi, Nov 14, 2011
Photo of Rayek
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at City O' City in Denver. Served in a snifter. The deep chocolate hue borders on black. A small nougat cap slowly falls to a patchwork film. Leaves bits of lace.

This beer is fairly light for this much alcohol. Baking chocolate, espresso, burnt wood and a bit of vanilla do the bulk of the work. The bourbon barrel here is more subdued than in other barrel aged beers I've had. It adds a woodsy presence that doesn't get in the way of the rest of the proceedings. Even with the high ABV, the alcohol is well masked. It adds a touch of warmth going down. Overall balance is exemplary. The medium body is syrupy and has the right amount of fizz.

Overall, I liked this a lot. It has a good balance that many members of this style lack. As an added bonus, the bourbon barrel isn't overpowering. Instead, it lends a nice compliment to the other flavors.

Rayek, Nov 13, 2011
Photo of Yesac
3.65/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received on trade from someone, can't remember. Vintage 2009.

A- Appears black in the glass, a small khaki head forms which quickly thins out to a small layer. Nothing to exciting here.

S- caramel, faint oak, bourbon, dark cherry. Not to much going on here either.. everything is fairly faint and not that complex.

T- Along with smell... weak bourbon barrel, oak, dark cherry, root beer.

M- Medium bodied, light carbonation.

O- An okay bourbon stout, I've certainly have had better. Age didn't seem to do this one well but I've also not had a fresh one either.

Yesac, Nov 13, 2011
Photo of birchstick
3.98/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a black color with a 1 finger head into a 10oz snifter. The nose consists of molasses and oak with some bourbon and coffee. The taste is similar. Opens with spicy bourbon which seems to never really go away. A little bit of chocolate comes into the mix through the middle. Tones of vanilla and molasses show up toward the back and are kept in check by the spicy bourbon. Wow, this one is pretty hot. Leaves with vanilla and almost a spicy rum flavor on tap, This could use more age to mellow out a bit as it seems like the bourbon was overpowering everything else in its midst. I t is a solid beer nonetheless and Definitely recommended.

birchstick, Nov 08, 2011
Photo of kkrez
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

from notes:

They started with an American Imperial Stout and then threw it into some Buffalo Trace bourbon barrels to age for four months. And wow, what an end product.

The nose holds very present bourbon aroma, and then roasted coffee, chocolate, and some dark fruit notes.

The taste tells a different story. What I like especially about this one is how the bourbon isn’t so powerful, it is just one very nice flavor amongst many nice flavors. This is definitely one of the most balanced bourbon or whiskey barrel aged beers I’ve had. Flavors of vanilla, roasty coffee, wood, caramel, bourbon, and slight hop bitterness all blend together to create quite a drinking experience.

And for as big a beer this is, it drinks perfectly, just the right mouth feel, creamy but not heavy.

You could finish this beer yourself, but you’ll want to share this with someone, just so you can share the feeling of joy that come from drinking this lovely offering.

kkrez, Nov 06, 2011
Photo of Ilovedryhopping
4.47/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance- Color is opaque brown. The head pours thick and stands well over an inch before diffusing to a perfect 2 finger head.

Smell: Defined bourbon barrel scent. Has a sweet scent of vanilla, yet a chocolate finish smell.

Taste: Very well balanced. It has a huge body, yet the oak and caramel notes make it smooth.

Mouthful: Although heavy, it has the carbonation to make it refreshing.

Overall a delightful experience!

Ilovedryhopping, Nov 03, 2011
Photo of JoeAmerican77
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The pitch black bourbon stout rears its ugly, tan, three fingered head at my mini colorado tulip glass and beckons my attention, big 'ol lacing as it lowers... Smells of new tire rubber and heavy hops cut through the air backed with a vinous alcohol spice. Dark chocolate, pomegranate, burnt cigar, rubber cork and huge roasted malts burn up the palate. A lot of new flavors in this bourbon buddy I have not experienced before. Big body and a medium to high level of carbonation make the experience a lively one.

Overall this was a nice experience however I am saddened to find how much this lacked compared to what I expected. Huge bourbon beers come out of the local CO breweries, Great Divide, Avery, Oskar Blues etc put out miracles of bourbon magic yet this BBS was considered the bar to beat a few years ago. Today for the Price point (between 17$-25$) this beer was a little disappointing.

JoeAmerican77, Oct 31, 2011
Photo of Phelps
3.7/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Black and thick as pitch. No highlights — or any light at all — coming through. The head is the color and consistency of spun brown sugar. It gets about an inch tall before slinking back down to half a finger and goes nowhere after that.

In the nose: acrid burnt bread, dried peanuts, lots of ethanol, a surprising amount of citrusy hops, and of course new oak and sweet bourbon. The booze is mild and smoothly blended in the background.

Flavor is a pretty perfect reflection of the nose. Bread, toasted to a crisp; peanut skins, roasted; lots of ethanol flavor, but less actual bourbon. Smooth, bitter dark chocolate and a hint if prunes dance in the back, as does smoky oak, as if the barrel was burnt instead of toasted. Some toffee, burnt sugar and occasional hits of butterscotch emerge as well. That all sounds better than it is, however. The good parts of the flavor are hard to pull out, and most of the time all I get is a big alcohol bite and bitter chocolate.

Gentle massaging carbonation in a velvety body a hair under medium. Silky in the tongue. Ethanol fumes in the nose, heat on the tongue. I'll at least give it this: it's not as hot as it should be.

Odell's Bourbon Barrel Stout needs something, I just can't quite figure out what. More bourbon? More stout? There's something missing here, and ethanol flavor is running wild. I was able to try the first batch of this beer on tap, and it was outrageously good. All subsequent tastings have either been infected or disappointing.

Phelps, Oct 28, 2011
Photo of JamisonM
1.88/5  rDev -52%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

2011 Vintage poured into a Tulip glass big pop on the cork

A: A slow pour yielded a huge mocha head body is black as night.

S: No bourbon notes here? A musty citrus note here along with slight chocolate and vanilla notes. Smells off.

T: Yuck this is infected! Tastes just like there wild yeast strain. Musty Citrus some black malt vanilla and chocolate. The wild yeast taste is really overwhelming the beer. No body no sweetness it has a very dry finish, not what I was looking for.

M: Body is not what I expected, its med low. High carbonation too high for the style. A very dry beer too.

Overall: Another infected batch?? Really Odell?? I paid 14 bucks per bottle I expect something better. Looking and the bottle more closely I see there is yeast at the top of the bottle near where the cork was. Maybe one day I will get to try a really good version of this beer, this was a huge let down.

JamisonM, Oct 27, 2011
Photo of kbutler1
3.58/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Draft. Served at ABR. Pours a dark brown black color with a fluffy tan head. Aroma is bourbon and oak all the way with a touch of dark chocolate, vanilla, and some roast. Medium mouthfeel, lighter than I really want. Everything seems pretty balanced here but something for me is lacking here and I can’t quite put a finger on it. I find myself liking it but not as much as I want to. One sample was good for me.

kbutler1, Oct 23, 2011
Photo of claytong
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

2011 vintage on tap, pretty fresh

appearance - chocolate brown that is almost black, mocha head, sticky and great lacing

smell - milk chocolate, caramel, bourbon, and a bit of mocha

taste - repeat, and all is quite well balanced. simple but delicious, cant argue.

mouthfeel - thick bodied, highly drinkable, lightly carbonated goodness.

this competes with the greats of the style

claytong, Oct 20, 2011
Photo of Bierlerner
4.3/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Nice deep dark brown. Could almost be confused for black. 1 finger creamy head. Great sticky lacing.

S- Chocolate milk and bourbon!! Does it get any better!? Nice strong chocolate presence and a hint of roast and coffee. Great balance.

T- Again with the great balance. And again with the chocolate milk, and hints of bourbon, coffee, and roasted notes and slightness of earthy hops. Damn delicious.

M- full creamy and silky smooth body and low carb. Has the consistency of chocolate milk.

O- I cannot get over how awesome this damn beer is. And at 11.5%, its not even noticeable. LOVE IT! Great job, Odell!

Bierlerner, Oct 14, 2011
Bourbon Barrel Stout from Odell Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 338 ratings.