Bo & Luke - Against The Grain Brewery & Smokehouse
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Ratings: 455 | Reviews: 51 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by kevanb:
4.46/5 rDev +4.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Served in a snifter on tap at Local Option in Chicago. For those that don't know, this was aged in Pappy van Winkle barrels.
The beer pours a wonderful deep black color, hues of dark brown are certainly apparent, intensely opaque. A mocha colored head with tight knit bubbles rises to the top of the glass, easily a finger high that has fantastic retention and leaves behind a great web of lace as well as a significant amount of film atop the beer once the head does recede completely. The aroma is wonderful, lots of roasted coffee and charred wood, the smoke is such a great layer that plays well with the dark chocolate malt, but is still a bit abrasive, the bourbon is smooth and rich, no astringency with sweet chocolate and alcohol at the finish. The flavors are even more complex, lots of roasted coffee, charred wood like the nose led on, but the smoke is much less abrasive, plays so well with the chocolate, toasted malt. The bourbon is perfect, smooth, rich, brings out hints of vanilla and toffee sweetness that counterbalances the harsher roast elements. The body is wonderful, big and rich, coats the mouth very well, borderline creamy, a slightly drier finish than I'd like, but it's just about perfect.
Verdict: Wonderful stout that only got more complex and flavorful as it warmed. The PvW treatment is just as good as any high profile beer I've tried be it Rare, BA Dark Lord or King Henry and the smokiness is just as great as a beer like Barfly. This was a real treat to enjoy and I hope to have the chance to enjoy it again.
Serving type: on-tap
11-06-2012 19:32:30 | More by kevanb
More User Reviews:
3.8/5 rDev -11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
A: Good looking dark beer with a little head.
S:A little too much smoke, but not completely overpowering like so many smoky beers. You can smell the bourbon a bit as well as cherry.
T: I get more cherry than anything else. Smoke flavor so there, but not very powerful, which is good for me. Bourbon is there, but not very much.
M: Lighter than I expected. Not much alcohol burn.
O: A good beer. I would like some more age on it to see what happens. The smoke and light mouthfeel did me in. I couldn't finish it.
Serving type: bottle
07-16-2014 01:30:06 | More by supaadam
4.56/5 rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
Pours black with charred brown highlights toward the edges. Small cinnamon brown colored head that dissipates to nothing. This bottle leaked on the way to me, so I chilled it and opened it right away. Maybe some loss of carbonation but there was still a hiss when I popped the top so I believe the loss was not extreme.
Smell is quite nice with big vanilla, creamy cocoa, cinnamon, smoke, a dark fruit character much like plum or fresh black cherry pulp. Overall smokey but very well balanced with the barrel and sugary malt notes.
Taste is creamy vanilla, meaty char, dulce de leche, nutmeg, spiced rum, oak, hints of pasteurized maple syrup, and fresh pipe tobacco. Wow, one of the better tasting barrel aged imperial stouts I've had in a while. Of course I spend my days mostly immersed in farmhouse funk, but still, how did I not have this sooner. Very tasty!
Mouthfeel sports a solid light heavy body with 20 percentile carbonation level. I'm sure it lost some carb with that leakage so it's hard to hold it against it. Even then, it drinks very nice and for the abv is quite smooth. Sweet but with plenty of char and spice to balance it out.
Overall a fantastic imperial stout. This is far better than any of the ones I've had lately, which are actually few but among them some Noir variants and a few others. Has a great structure with the sweet and creamy flavors, smokiness, fall spice character, and subtle bourbon notes. This actually reminded me of a smokey, less rich Abraxas and quite honestly is about as good or better.
Serving type: bottle
07-12-2014 23:38:48 | More by MarcWP
Bo & Luke from Against The Grain Brewery & Smokehouse
95 out of 100 based on 455 ratings.