Samuel Adams Thirteenth Hour Stout (Barrel Room Collection) - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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Samuel Adams Thirteenth Hour Stout (Barrel Room Collection)Samuel Adams Thirteenth Hour Stout (Barrel Room Collection)

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888 Ratings
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Ratings: 888
Reviews: 246
rAvg: 3.71
pDev: 15.9%
Wants: 37
Gots: 131 | FT: 5
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  9.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Aged in oak barrels; hand-bottled corked & caged; bottled-conditioned.

(Beer added by: Jason on 08-11-2011)
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Ratings: 888 | Reviews: 246 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of FanofHefe
3.95/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Corked and caged bomber poured into a Duvel tulip. Deep, dark, body that is mostly black with no light getting through. Larger than expected tan head, nearly three fingers, that has good retention and leaves a bit of creamy lacing down the glass.

The aroma is very much as expected from a BSDA: fruity esters with dark fruit dominating. Some light, sweet maltiness comes through as well, and some notes that are reminiscent of a nice cabernet.

The flavor is, again, what I expected from a BSDA with strong raisin and grape flavors accompanied by a bit of roasted malt. A very light note of hops and some light yeast notes that are complex - both sour and sweet at times. Got to love Belgian yeast.

Since the bottle noted it was a "stout," I was expecting a thicker texture and this one is on the thin side overall. But, this is definitely a complex and tasty brew that I would gladly recommend.

Photo of SeamusDoyle
3.5/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brown pour but black in the glass. Small tan head, no lace. Sour cherries, Belgian yeast, hint of coffee grounds, and faint roast in the aroma. Just a bit of oak comes off as it warms. The flavor has sweet, tart cherries and yeast, with a bit of toasty malts.Alcohol and the slightest bit of oak on the finish. Medium body at best, with light carbonation

Photo of HamGlade10
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%

Photo of Millette
3.75/5  rDev +1.1%

Photo of BeerJD
4/5  rDev +7.8%

Photo of FrankK
3.5/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of generallee
4/5  rDev +7.8%

Photo of oriolesfan4
4.5/5  rDev +21.3%

Photo of duceswild
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%

Photo of Quackershnoc
4.33/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: really dark, deep purple color, barely any light getting through this guy; khaki colored head that thins out but still sticks around awhile
Aroma: banana and other fruit notes; coffee; chocolate; malt; a hint of spice
Taste: wow, this is big and complex; it starts with some malty sweetness; moves into some banana but the other fruit notes are huge, almost a wine kind of taste, grapes/raisins and other dark fruits; it gets a bit spicy in there too, very nice; finishes dry, maybe a little alcohol warmth, with fruit aftertaste; this is really good
Mouthfeel: it's creamy...maybe velvety?; it is not very carbonated, but I think that works out really well
Overall Impression: this is a very good beer; it's smooth, big, and drinkable; I have never even heard of anything like this...a spicy stout is just crazy, but in a good way; there are layers of flavor throughout and they get a bit more pronounced as it warms up; may favorite part is the balance of the malty and spicy's a spicy stout! that's just nuts!

Photo of ESPNman
4.03/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served into a tulip glass.

A - Pours a thin, deep purple. Almost black, but not quite. Kind of like a really deep Cabernet red. Very little head, and even less lacing... although what head is generated does have a surprising retention to it.

S - Lots of rich fruit flavors, as well as a bit of roasty malt and oak. Not much alcohol present on the nose, despite the 9% ABV here.

T - Woah, it's like there's a party in my mouth and everyone's invited. There's a lot going on in this big complex beer, and it works for the most part. Belgian-yeast fruit esters, deep roasted caramel malts, sweet fruit, peppery spice, and a bit of imperial stout-esque chocolate. Very little hop bitterness. It could have used a bit more barrel aging to tame the Belgian yeast fruit.

M - A little overcarbonated for my tastes. A little dry on the finish. Solid, but unspectacular and with some flaws.

O - This was an ambitious beer that hit most of the right notes. I'd definitely drink it again if I get the opportunity, but it's not something that I'm going to be seeking out.

Photo of Morey
3.75/5  rDev +1.1%

Photo of jheezee
3.75/5  rDev +1.1%

Photo of Lare453
4/5  rDev +7.8%

Photo of DruC4
4/5  rDev +7.8%

Photo of SadMachine
4.25/5  rDev +14.6%

Photo of ScaryEd
3.5/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of smalenberg
3.8/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Dark with a small head, slight hints of red near the edges

S - Sweet candied fruits and malt

T - Candied fruit (raisin and plum) and strong caramel with hints of the alcohol strength and subtle peppery notes.

M - Smooth but with slight bite from the alcohol.

O - Very nice. Not the best among these special barrel editions, but very enjoyable.

Photo of ridgeline23
3.75/5  rDev +1.1%

Photo of SABERG
3.6/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into modified tulip glass. Initially chilled but allowed to warm.

A - Deep dark, a bit of ruby coloring. Head was prolific, lacing was very good.
S - Currants, cocoa, leather, subtle spice notes, quite pleasant.
T - Vexing, some sweetnes, a little spice, dried fruit, alcohol hidden in the mix.
Spiciness as the glass warmed. This is a hard brew to pin down.
M - Medium across the palete, nice carbonation level. A moderate linger where some of the alcohol warms.
O - I waited to try this and am glad I did. This is a challenging beer to review. The brewery keeps up the fine work, while challenging our palates.


Photo of Scotchboy
4.1/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Corked and caged 750ml split with the portion poured into a Jackie O's tulip...

A: Dark brown pour with a tight two-finger light khaki head...foamy lacing typical of bottle-conditioned light shows through the brown body of the beer.

S: Belgian yeast and spices unfold on the nose, followed by darker fruits (big time raisins and plums) and oaky smoothness...light peppery sensation and distant vanilla, with suggestions of cocoa.

T: Even more diverse than the nose. Belgian yeast characters still dominate the palate, followed by plums and dark cherries...fairly hefty roasted malt backbone with a moderate mixture of dark chocolate and roasted coffee notes. Creamy vanilla, earthy oak, peppery herbal undertone. As it warms the chocolate shows up a bit more, as well as some vinous red wine notes and brandy warmth.

MF: Creamy bottle conditioning takes a hold of the mouthfeel...moderate body is nearly full, soft and velvety with an appropriate amount of dryness.

O: A nearly perfect example of the style (Belgian Stout/Strong Dark) and a very respectable Sam Adams offering.

Photo of ONUMello
3.75/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle poured into a tulip glass
A: Pitch black overall with a bit of amber around the edges. Initially a two-finger head that settle to a lingering one-finger head.
S: Light malts, light coffee, a hint of tropical fruit.
T: Quite sour overall. Some light malts, a hint of coffee but the overall flavor is sour citrus/tropical fruits, almost overwhelmingly so.
M: Fairly light-bodied. Quite acidic.
O: An interesting and overall enjoyable brew. I would prefer a bit more malt & less sour, but this was still nice.

Photo of mactrail
3.8/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Deep ruby-tinted brown in the Saint Martin tall tulip. A nice foam with a brown tint. Faultless carbonation with a nice spritz on the tongue.

The first taste is something like licorice. Very dark malt flavors dominate with a sweet, roasted chestnut flavor. Barely a hint of burnt sugar. Lots of dark caramel. Fig jam fruitiness. Tastes like Christmas candy with a hint of cinnamon. Really intriguing flavors. The Belgian flavors are fairly under cover, with just a little of the dry aftertaste showing up.

Rich and more of a dessert drink, but another intriguing and well-made beer from Sam Adams. From the 750 ml bottle bought at Liticker's in San Diego.

Photo of Phelps
4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The thirteenth hour is also known as the witching hour -- the time of day when witches, demons and ghosts appear and black magic is most effective. The name refers not only to the dark juju created by combining the roasted flavors of a stout with the spicy character of a sour Belgian ale, but also to the 13 ingredients used to brew the beer. It combines seven different malts (Samuel Adams two-row pale malt blend, Caramel 60, Munich 10, Special B, and Carafa III, for those who care about such things), Hallertau Mittelfrueh hops, two different brewing sugars, Kosmic Mother Funk (which we'll discuss in a minute), Belgian yeast and champagne yeast for bottle conditioning.

The result? A brew that's as deathly black as the midnight hour to which it refers. In a tulip, the obsidian brew is topped with a super-frothy layer of cocoa-colored bubbles that look as thick and inviting as pancake batter. The stout-like appearance is belied by the nose, however. Dip the nostrils close and you'll get a dose of Belgian dark fruits: raisins, figs, dates. Vanilla, black pepper and a hint of acidity swirl in the rich background.

Now, back to the Kosmic Mother Funk. All Barrel Room Collection beers contain this ale that's fermented with wild yeasts and bacteria, then aged in oak tuns for over a year. The KMF is blended into the Barrel Room beers in varying amounts, lending them new layers of funky flavor. In Thirteenth Hour, this wild ale contributes herbal spice and a mild tanginess that grabs the back of the tongue.

More impactful on Thirteenth Hour's flavor is the extended barrel-aging. The "Barrel Room" name isn't arbitrary -- each beer in the collection was aged in special oak barrels originally used to make brandy. The containers traveled far to get to New England: the oak, which originated in Eastern Europe, was used for brandy-making in Italy. Coopers in Portugal took the barrels apart, then flew to Boston to reassemble them by hand. From these, Thirteenth Hour gets heaping helpings of rich, sweet red grapes and oak to blend with the underlying stout flavors of smoky peat, chocolate, vanilla and coffee. The brandy almost makes the brew seem more like a Belgian strong dark ale than a stout, in fact.

The Belgian stout is a weird style on its own, and Thirteenth Hour is a fine example of how these flavors play off one another. Pick one up if you want an interesting taste experience -- or if you're a Neanderthal like me and just want a pretty bottle to look at.

Photo of davidtarantino
4.5/5  rDev +21.3%

Samuel Adams Thirteenth Hour Stout (Barrel Room Collection) from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
84 out of 100 based on 888 ratings.