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

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams Thirteenth Hour Stout (Barrel Room Collection)Samuel Adams Thirteenth Hour Stout (Barrel Room Collection)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

261 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 261
Hads: 977
Avg: 3.77
pDev: 29.71%
Wants: 41
Gots: 193 | FT: 6
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:
Beer added by: Jason on 08-11-2011

Aged in oak barrels; hand-bottled corked & caged; bottled-conditioned.
View: Beers (118) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 261 | Hads: 977
Photo of Mebuzzard
3.39/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Love these bottles from SA.

Pours a dark ruby, cola body. A very nice looking beer capped with a rich off-white head. Nice lacing.

Aroma is a touch weak. Some leather and plum. Cocoa and roasted grains. Some booze.

Flavors come and go. Red plum. Blackberries. A light cocoa and leather strap. Some candied Jolly Rancher in the back. Flavors are light, and I'm glad this one is listed as a BSDA instead of a quad, which is what the label suggests. It's strong, and has some good flavors, it just seems the carbonation lifts away the taste.

Finishes a bit hollow for me. But isn't bad by any means

 603 characters

Photo of Stinkypuss
4.15/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Samuel Adams Thirteenth Hour Stout
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale
ABV: 9.00 %

LOOK: Dark brown color, little to no sediment, creamy coating of head that leaves some lace down the glass.

SMELL: Aroma of toasted malts, coffee, fruit, must, old oak. Has some dark fruits going on, with raisin, plum and fig notes.

TASTE: Rich dark fruits, candied malts, vanilla, oak and coffee are all dancing over the palate. Pretty damn tasty, with lots of sweet and savory flavors, a small tang, smooth vanilla, bourbon and coffee. As other tasters have noted, this is more akin to a belgian strong dark ale than a stout, but it is an enjoyable brew nonetheless.

FEEL: Full bodied, silky smooth, low-medium carbonation, and very nice altogether.

OVERALL: A successful brew from Samuel Adams. Lots of good flavors going on, and mostly do compliment each other. Barrel aging has added a nice touch to this beer, and it is drinking just fine right now. Would pair nicely with chocolates.

 1,010 characters

Photo of johnnnniee
4.01/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a solid dark brown color with a decent khaki head that shows moderate retention and lace. The aroma has a distinct lactic tartness to it that seems to overpower everything else in the nose. Faint hints of chalk and yellow mustard come out. The label says Belgian stout with notes of spice, coffee, chocolate, and oak I wish I could find some of those in the nose! Taste is a bit different than the aroma lead me to believe although it is a bit tart and funky. Deep caramel and brown sugary malt mixed with toffee and hints of chocolate start us out on quite a journey. Midway through we turn lactic with fruity tart and sour notes filling the palette. We finish with a bit of warming alcohol, hints of roasted grains that even show a bit of an ashy edge and a bit of caramel. Medium to thick body with a moderate level of carbonation and a thick sweet tart chalky mouthfeel. Uhm wow this is not the beer I thought I bought, but I'm getting that a lot lately from Boston beer. The nose is extremely lackluster, but the flavor is a huge explosion of ever changing flavors that wake up even the most sedate taste buds. I may have to pick up a few more of these for further evaluation.

 1,187 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.68/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a goblet, the beer is a dark ruby-brown, almost to the point of black, with some auburn highlights around the edges, and a thin ring of biege-tan head. Pretty steady flow of carbonation throughout, also. The beer's nose is funky, with a slight boozey character, and some heavy earthy tones. The flavors are strong and complex, with a dark cocoa nib bittersweet backbone, some lighter old world fruit sweetness, including dates and fig, and an oaky, boozey tone. There are some coffee characteristics deep in the beer, and some sour highlights, as well. The aftertaste is a tarte and sweet dark fruit blend more than anything else, with a linger of cocoa. The finish is slick, with a slight linger. Light bodied for the power of all the flavors, but a very interesting blend of flavors.

 797 characters

Photo of Zorro
3.33/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Clear dark brown colored beer with a small brown colored head. This is a change from the light-proofed stouts that are so popular today.

Smell is fruity like a Foreign Export Stout. Fruit with chocolate and coffee. Catching some pepper from the alcohol fumes. Over all it isn't a strongly scented beer.

Starts out fruity and light in the mouth much more like wine than beer. Lightly sweet with the spicy taste of a Belgian yeast used. Chocolate, coffee and coriander tasted. Only problem is that the flavors are a bit on the light side. Tastes something like a Belgian Blond Ale with some patent malt added.

Mouthfeel is light.

Overall a disappointment Not saying it tastes bad, just saying I expected more flavor..

 719 characters

Photo of biegaman
3.56/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Thirteenth Hour - known as "the witching hour" - does indeed look a product of the dark arts; normally a beer so black doesn't come equipped with such a towering, foamy head. Holding it to the light we're let in on the little secret that this beer is actually concealing deep brown tones.

I expected a lot more character than this. I figured a big barrel-aged stout fermented with Belgian-yeast would have enough rich, roasted malts, coffee, and dark chocolate flavours to make this review an easy and quick one to write. Turns out, however, there's a lot to be said but little of it has to do with an abundance of flavour...

This has aromas and tastes of raisins, prunes, oak, chai spice as well as anise and clove, but nothing remotely rich or overtly 'stout-like'. What it does have is an unexpected sourness - turns out the stout is only the base beer. Thirteenth Hour is blended with Kosmic Mother Funk (a barrel- and Brettanomyces-soured wild ale).

This sourness was carefully mixed in so as to be more of a background note, but it's not exactly in good proportion to the malt; the problem is there simply isn't enough malt. It's certainly not overwhelming (nothing tart or puckering) but it's more defining than complimenting. It adds value to the beer but doesn't help the appreciation of the stout.

Sam Adams is also being a little deceiving when they say that Thirteenth Hour is brewed with 13 ingredients - the only extra ingredient in this beer is two kinds of brewing sugars (and I'm not sure why they needed to use two?). As for the rest: 7 are different malts, two are varieties of yeast, one is the hop, and one is a different beer altogether. Not quite as unique as it's billed.

While we're on the topic of being mislead, the brewery is free to call Thirteenth Hour a stout - and, to be sure, it started out as one - but it drinks far more like a Belgian Strong Dark Ale. And it's not a particularly good one at that. Indeed, this disappoints on all possible fronts - stout, Belgian dark, barrel-aged and soured beer - unable to satisfy on any of those accounts.

 2,088 characters

Photo of plaid75
3.8/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep black hue with a one finger foamy off white head. There was good retention and lacing.

The smell featured lively esters, burnt sugar and dry cocoa.

The taste was likewise full of esters, earthy sweet malts, dark fruit and dark chocolate.

The mouthfeel was typical of the style.

Overall a tasty offering from Sam Adams. Billed as a stout however, despite the esters.

 383 characters

Photo of jdhilt
4.35/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a three fingered light brown head that fades slowly to a ring, leaving some lace. Good carbonation and medium bodied. Color is black, no highlights. Spicy chocolate nose and flavor is sweet, spicy chocolate and coffee. Good stout - second only to their Imperial White. $9.99 for a caged and corked, black, 750ml bottle from Market Basket Concord, NH.

 356 characters

Photo of rhoadsrage
3.48/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

(Served in a glass tankard)

A- This beer has a black dense body with a fizzy light tan head that last a bit and is supported by a few random bubbles that glide to the surface.

S- The smell of cola and dark raisins blend with some wet wood notes and a dark malt hint. The finish has notes of green raisins, spice and rubber bands.

T- The bright dark fruit flavor is well blended with not much depth but some toffee and prune notes come though wit a slight tang quality in the finish.

M- The light mouthfeel is crisp with a scrubbing fizz in the finish and an alcohol heat that hangs on the tongue as a warmth after each sip.

O- The flavors are well blended or perhaps it just doesn't have any depth and it is pretty light aswell. It has none of the flavors described on the bottle and I wouldn't guess this to be a stout if it wasn't printed on the bottle.

 863 characters

Photo of Tone
4.03/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a black color. 1/3 inch head of a tan color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of oak, spices, alcohol, sweet malt, roasted malt, slight grapes, and a hint of hop. Fits the style of a Belgian Strong Dark Ale. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, spices, slight alcohol, slight roasted malt, slight oak, hint of grape, and slight hops. Overall, good appearance, aroma, complexity, body, and blend.

 467 characters

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.03/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Maudite snifter. Pours a very dark ruddy brown, appearing black in the glass. Healthy three finger light brown head with great retention and massive lacing. Aroma dominated by light fruit, particularly cherries and Belgian yeast and spicing. Light element of toasted malt; kind of the opposite I'd expect from a stout (as per the lable), but appropriate for the style listed here on BA. Pleasant, but surprising. Flavor is also confusing, starting with sweet light fruit juice, developing into slightly sour cherry, finishing with pleasant light and dark fruit with slight Belgian yeast and spicing. I'm not picking up much wild yeast funk nor much if any toasted malt. Not detecting the chocolate nor oak, maybe a hint of each. I'm uncertain how to review this; if by the lable, it is a somewhat of a miss. A stout with no toasted or dark malt flavor does not seem in style. Since it is pleasant to drink, I'm going to score it under the BA style of Belgian strong dark ale. Flavor is overall light, but nicely balanced and an interesting flavor progression. Body is medium with a bit of creaminess; nice mouth feel. A reasonable domestic take on a BSDA. Alcohol is well covered by the flavor. I recommend this ale, but don't grab one expecting a traditional (or even Belgian style) stout. The BA strong Belgian ale style is spot on. I like this and will probably buy it again.

 1,392 characters

Photo of tobelerone
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer has a big, tan, slowly falling head leaving a nice creamy cap with sticky lacing. Very deep and dark brown approaching black in color, totally opaque. Appealing yeasty, fruity aroma, with touches of roastiness and tannins; vaguely wine-like.

The taste is sweet, spicy, and oaky. Notes of bittersweet chocolate, caramel, and raisins. Tart and a little sour. Wood is definitely noticed.

Creamy mouthfeel, somewhat chewy, with low medium carbonation and a lingering, slightly sour aftertaste. Somewhat drying with the oak present in the finish as well. Quite good, an unusual stout to be sure, but I enjoyed it more than I anticipated.

 645 characters

Photo of beerthulhu
2.94/5  rDev -22%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Cola with sherry highlights upon the pours exit which turns a pitch black in the chalice. A bready textured head is khaki in color with a towering size and good retainment. Carbonation is strong as evident of the beading of bubbles along the side of the glass.

S: Belgian yeast has a light damp muskiness to it, baryard quality but very manageable for those who offend easily. The accompanied tag claims an aroma of coffee, chocolate, dark fruit and oaky vanilla with a peppery spice, all of which I failed to pick up from a blind perspective.

T: Musky Belgian yeastiness for flavor with damp pale grains, and sweet dark fruit. The chocolate malt seems to take a back seat here, small, ineffective, to the yeast character. Fresh dough, sweet oaky vanailla extract, plums and a touch of briary rounds things out.

M: oily texture, turning fizzy and frothy on the hold. Feels a wee light when swirled around. Definitly lacks body and roast.

O: Overall a bit thin substance wise with a quiet complexity that is perhaps to gentle at times makes this a shoulder shrug from someone who loves Belgian style beers and dark roasty bases. The yeasty quality was one of the few bright points here, the spicing was not up to advertising. Expected so much more from this especially after just sampling their triple (New World) which I found very respectable. Average drinkability and may not be worth the price of admission except for the fancy packaging.

 1,452 characters

Photo of cjgator3
4.42/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A- Poured into a tulip glass. Pours a dark brownish black color with a tan head with great retention and lacing.

S- The aroma has some sour funk with oak and dark fruits and roasted malts.

T- The taste is dark and roasty along with some dark fruits, oak and a yeasty finish.

M- The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a high amount of carbonation.

O- Overall, I really enjoyed the Thirteenth Hour. It was a great new beer from Sam Adams.

 438 characters

Photo of Bitterbill
4.1/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

It's a very dark brown colour with an inch of tannish foam and good lacing.

The smell brings me lots of oak and vanilla backed up by dark fruits and chocolate of the sweet kind.

The taste starts off very sweet, just on the edge of being overly so when the other elements kick in.

The woody notes from the oak, vanilla, chocolate, some caramel malt, spice, and a light level of tartness.

Medium body with medium carbonation.

Very tasty brew that does have the alcohol a bit heavy handed but slow sipping works fine.

 524 characters

Photo of puboflyons
3.98/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The corked, caged bottle. Sampled on March 15, 2013.

It pours charcoal black but not jet black with a moderate beige head that lingers and laces.

The aroma is more oak and dark fruit heavy than with esters of chocolate and coffee. I did not get that "stout" aroma that In usually get with stouts. There's a little yeast and malt but it is downplayed.

The body is medium to full with a certain acidity.

The taste is a step up from the aroma with a slightly more forward malt and yeast character but the oak and dark fruits tend to supersede it. Low to moderate bitterness at the end that does not last.

 605 characters

Photo of Brad007
3.78/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown/garnet with a thin head. For some reason, this isn't actually classified as a stout, despite the label description. Who to trust? I missed the belgian part. D'oh!

Oak, spice and coffee are the three primary aromas upfront. Maybe, just maybe, there's a trace of chocolate. I won't make any promises.

Starts out with oak and then finishes with toffee and cocoa notes. Neither here nor there. A bit weak in spots too.

As for weak? The body, for starters, feels dull and insipid. At least the oak is subdued enough to where it's bearable.

If the legend about Triple Bock is correct, then this beer is still a few notches above it. I would prefer more body and more prominent flavors all-around. Good try but I wouldn't buy it again.

 753 characters

Photo of rudzud
3.71/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed at the Belgian Beer Fest.

A - A deep oily black with a one finger off white head that leave big, thick side lacing.

S - Burnt sugars, roasted malts, sweet bitter chocolates, and some light vanilla.

T - More of the same, burnt sugars and roasty malts, bitter chocolates, vanilla, dark fruits (raisins).

M - PLeasant amount of carbonation. Smooth yet creamy still.

O - I enjoyed this beer. Glad to try it. Not sure if I'd buy it though.

 447 characters

Photo of bluejacket74
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml caged and corked bottle. Served in a chalice, the beer pours a dark ruby red/brown color (when held to the light) with about an inch tan head. Head retention and lacing are both good. The aroma is nice, it smells like dark fruit, chocolate, sweet spices, vanilla, and some coffee. It tastes like dark fruit (cherries, raisins, plums), chocolate, sweet spices, oak, tart fruit and a little bit of coffee. However, it is a mostly sweet tasting beer. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit creamy and coating with good carbonation. I think this is a good overall brew, I'd buy it again. It was better than I was expecting it to be so it was a nice surprise! I'm pretty sure it was just $6.99 a bottle, I don't think it was any more than that.

 744 characters

Photo of claspada
4.12/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a black dense color with a fizzy light tan head that slowly recedes leaving a ring of bubbles on the surface around the edge of the glass.

Aromas begin with a huge amount of Belgian yeast influenced smells including dark dark fruits, mainly figs and raisins. As it warms there is some wet wood notes and a dark chocolate maltiness. The finish has notes of green raisins, spice and vanilla.

The tastes are full of bright dark fruit which blends with some toffee and prune notes that come though wit a slight tang quality in the finish. Chocolate and yeasty spice emerge as it warms.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium-high carbonation. Finish is fairly dry and dark fruit forward, higher carbonation is a nice change of pace and makes this surprisingly drinkable.

Overall I really was surprised and enjoyed this beer from Sam Adams. The flavors are well blended and this is exactly what a Belgian Stout should taste like. I was saving this for colder weather but just decided to crack it open on a whim and although the darker beers are better enjoyed in colder months in my opinion, the dark fruitiness and lighter body make it fine for any evening as a nightcap.

 1,183 characters

Photo of ccrida
4.24/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance is dark with a creamy tan head leaving tight foamy lace.

Smell is fruity Belgian esters, robust grape.

Taste is basically strait BSDA, but with some light roast and brett notes. So, yes, definitely barrel aged Belgian stout, but really those are subtle auxiliary notes notes to the sugary malt and fruity esters. The problem is, the brett at least, is an acrid distraction. But I do like the chocolate notes of the stout.

Mouthfeel is a little thick, medium+.

Drinkability is solid overall. Definitely a nice beer, very good, not great. I seem to like it more than most here I guess, but I love a fruity BSDA. Some heat though, it's a sipper, but a very nice one.

 682 characters

Photo of Cyberkedi
4.2/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Although it pops like champagne when you open it (watch for flying corks!) it doesn’t fizz like nobody’s business. It pours a deep, warm, opaque sable with a rather typical tan head that doesn’t stick around too long. Smoky aroma has a strong fruity overtone, mainly apple and pear with a hint of banana, and earthy and miso touches. Flavor has a malty core with subtle nutty, earthy, molasses, fruity, roast coffee and chocolate notes. It tastes like a good Belgian style ale blended with a stout, and the different aspects of these two styles marry well. Smooth, edgy texture has above-average body and leaves a nutty, earthy, smoky finish.

 648 characters

Photo of tectactoe
3.95/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Pours a deep brown, dark ruby color with a tan head that fades pretty quickly and doesn't really leave any noticeable lacing. Nose hits very heavy with a cornucopia of fruity and earthy esters, the heaviest and most apparent being apples and grapes. Very, very sweet and malty aroma. The taste comes up and follows right along with the nose - fruity and actually slightly tart on the tongue, full of apple skins, grapes, and raisins. Sweet toffee and slight caramel shine through near the tail end of the beer. It finishes with a slight oak/woodgrain flavor and a touch of alcohol warmth. Bitterness is low and I really didn't notice any kind of florals or hops in this one at all. Medium-thick body, slightly sticky, low carbonation.

Pretty impressive outing from Sam Adams. This beer may look intimidating, but it was actually quite sweet on the tongue and the alcohol was hidden aside from the typical warming sensation it provided.

 936 characters

Photo of Jwale73
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle served in my St. Bernardus chalice at 51 degrees. Pours slightly darker than cola with a dense, cream-colored head embedded with tiny pinpricks. Head eventually settles into a consistent skim and a thick band around the edges. Arcs and spots of lacing are exposed on the tilt side of the glass with each quaff. Nose screams Belgian Strong Dark - dark vinous fruits, bubblegum, yeast and a hint of cocoa. Taste consistent with nose - more cocoa is revealed in the flavor profile as well as spice (perhaps nutmeg and anise) and a light, roasted quality towards the back. Mouthfeel is medlum-light with a slightly prickly carbonation and a trace of acidity. Definitely not a Belgian Style Stout; however, not a bad Belgian Strong Dark. That said, there are better examples of the style out there at this price point.

 827 characters

Photo of rfgetz
3.57/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark, cola brown color with quick rush of bubbles, gone quickly. Taste leads with an intriguing blend of dark malt, splash of fruit and some tart funkiness. First things noted on the tongue were the very cola like carbonation and sour/tart funkiness, beyond those notes, fruit and chocolate peek through the solid malts. Medium bodied, very highly carbonated. Some odd components including the carbonation and funkiness did not work well with the base beer.

 465 characters

Samuel Adams Thirteenth Hour Stout (Barrel Room Collection) from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
85 out of 100 based on 261 ratings.