AleSmith Speedway Stout - Bourbon Barrel Aged - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
AleSmith Speedway Stout - Bourbon Barrel AgedAleSmith Speedway Stout - Bourbon Barrel Aged

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
100
world-class

1,614 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,614
Reviews: 297
rAvg: 4.52
pDev: 8.19%
Wants: 1,936
Gots: 444 | FT: 54
Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  12.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: beerguy101 on 01-01-2004

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,614 | Reviews: 297
Photo of standardcherry
4.73/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

2009 bottle served in my trusty Lawson's snifter.

A: Pours thick and completely black with a very nice big tan head.
S: Smells like chocolate and bourbon.
T: Again, tastes like chocolate and bourbon. Can also taste some of the barrel characteristics (oak). Coffee seems to have faded because it's barely there.
M: Nice carbonation. Thick and velvety smooth.
O: This is up there with Parabola as one of my favorite stouts, great job Alesmith! Definitely try this if you get the chance.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.12/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Tieman for sharing this one at his tasting.

2009 vintage.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to an oily film on top of the beer. Foamy streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, bourbon, and wood. Taste is much the same with a slight tartness. There is an alcohol kick and a mild roasty bitterness with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer with a great smell but the taste doesn't quite match up for me.

Photo of Beerbeer101
4.38/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown color. Medium head. Aroma is malts, dark sugar and fruits. Full bodied Imperial Stout. Malts are roasty, chocolate and coffee, with touches of vanilla and dark fruit. The brandy/bourbon flavor is evident. Nice blend of chocolate, wood and smoke. Very smooth. Bourbon and chocolate flavors blend well together. Touch of alcohol bite. Nice beer. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly bitter.

Photo of auroracrisis
4.35/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2009 750ml served in a snifter, so excited to finally try this one.

Pours like motoroil, ink black with a one finger mocha head that dissipates into a ring around the edges. Big legs, no lacing.

Almost smells like dark chocolate frosting with a twist of bourbon. A touch of tannin and vanilla, the coffee has unfortunately faded out of this.

Big dark chocolate up front with a rounded out sweetness similar to malt balls. Bourbon notes throughout with highlights of vanilla and oak. Surprisingly not hot at all.

Heavy on the palate and sticky. Extremely low carbonation.

A solid barrel aged stout but doesn't do too much different than any other highly rated stout. Wish I had popped this sooner because I feel that it would have had more to offer earlier in it's life but still, a great beer.

Photo of Luk13
4.65/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle thanks to boutip, 2009 vintage. Appearance is a nice full black with decent brown mocha head. Aroma is quite straightforward with bourbon, vanilla, the usual Alesmith divine caramel and molasses. You can definitly feel the high alcohol content which brings the ripe fruits upfront along with bourbon and caramel notes. Flavors are hard to describe as they aren't amazingly complex but so well integrated and intense. Bourbon and age seem to have completly taken over coffee from the regular version. As much as I like the regular version, BA speedway lifts this one to a new level without being over the top. Exactly what I expect from a bourbon barrel version.

Side-by-side with Black Note with BA speedway being a close winner. Although I prefered Black Note's palate and aroma, BA speedway's flavors were out of this world. One of the best stout I've had.

Photo of tarheels86
4.55/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750mL 2009 ed. Ink black pour with a wildly active reddish tan head. Big lace for a BA beer. Nose up front is salty, briny, green olive, sharp gherkins. Volatile notes move to wildly awesome toasted coconut, milk chocolate, toasted coconut. Incredible umami savoriness in the nose. Taste is ultra soft, muted chocolate, lactic fattiness, and zero acidic coffee and lemon character which I despise in the normal Speedway Stout. This right here is a masterpiece. Muted barrel character, no heat, no booze. Just imperial stout perfection right here. Perfect palate: melted chocolate, chocolate pound cake, fatty yogurt, mild bourbon spice, buttery ganache. Holy #@!!. An incredible experience. For one of the most stingy raters I can safely say this is totally worthy of its ranking and should be considered a god amongst men. Praise the lord for this beer.

Photo of stakem
4.25/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Big thanks are owed to BdubleEdubleRUN for trading this brew to me last year. 2009 vintage shared with friends. The brew pours black in color with a tan creamy head. Spotty to webby patterns of lace stick to the glass. A swirl revives a finger of rich brown froth back to the surface.

The aroma displays a bold presence of barrel aging. Caramel and toasty with hints of mellow vanilla sweetness. There are some citrus coffee components still present mixing with the roast of the dark kilned grains. A mild alcohol inclusion is noted and as it warms up, there becomes a scent of coconut included.

The taste is toasty with plenty of barrel characteristics imparted. A bit tannic with a feel of raw wood blended into a smoother flavor of caramel and mild oxidative properties. Some citrus coffee bean element is present along with bitter roast and chocolate. Some solvent alcohol is noted across the back with a spirit accented aspect.

This is a medium bodied brew with a smooth feel and modest amount of carbonation. It is boozy at times and demands to be a sipper. I enjoyed the big alcohol inclusion and the bold array of barrel character that was imparted. I am very glad I had the chance to try this but not being the craziest fan of speedway, I could take it or leave it in the future. Overall though, I can see why fans of speedway would go apeshit over this brew each time this treatment is released.

Photo of birchstick
4.12/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 Vintage - thanks to bsuedekum for another awesome share!

A - pours black with a nice cocoa, chocolate head on it

S - smells of sweet chocolate malts, really nice charred oak, spicy bourbon, and some vanilla

T - sweet chocolates open it up. These move on to a nice spicy bourbon flavor with some vanilla in the mix. Ends with more spicy bourbon...still pretty hot for being a couple of years old.

M - smooth and full bodied

D - this is a nice bourbon barrel aged stout. One of the more highly regarded ones out there and I can see why. However, I still found it a little hot and could use a little more time.

Photo of tiong
4.18/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle from a trade, thanks stawn! Originally rated on 25.8.2012

2009 vintage - Pours pitch black with a nice brown sticky and foamy head. Aroma of roasted malts, licorice, vanilla, oak, bourbon, hints of coffee and chocolate. Taste is slightly sweeter than the original Speedway Stout. Has a lot of roastiness, notes of vanilla, wood, oak, coffee and sweet molasses. Sweetish and smooth finish with nice bourbon vanilla notes and roastiness. Alcohol comes through slightly in the end. Overall a quite massive beer. Perhaps just a tad too sweet for my taste, though, and not as perfectly balanced as the original one. Still extremely tasty.

Photo of brystmar
4.09/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks for sharing, Josh! 2003 vintage, #156/196.

Pitch black body departs the bottle, settling into my glass with no trace of head (as expected from a ~9-year-old stout). Aroma shows no signs of oxidization (!) with strongly roasted malts and plenty of character from the oak barrels. Coffee was sacrificed to the gods of aging.

Dark chocolate, heavily roasted malts, oak, more dark chocolate, and plenty of boozy warmth survived the journey. I'm not a big fan of the base -- and I similarly dislike '09 BA Speedway -- so I was surprised how much I enjoyed this. Mature, handsome, and delicious.

Photo of iadler
4.23/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle received in a trade from Hamilton23. Thanks man! Cracked open during our recent BA Dark Lord drinking extravaganza. From notes. 2009 bottle.

A- Pours pitch black with a one finger dark mocha head that leaves some lines of lacing.

S- Earthy bourbon, oak, light coffee, roasted malt, dark chocolate, dark fruit with notes of plumb, fig and black cherry and a hint of vanilla. A nice aroma, but a bit subdued.

T- Lots of dark chocolate followed by bourbon, oak, vanilla, coconut, coffee beans, roasted malt, dark fruits and caramel.

M- Light to medium carbonation with a full body that finishes a bit hot.

O- As a big fan of the regular Speedway Stout, I was very excited to try this. The bourbon barrels added some nice qualities to the base beer, but the aging also stripped away the big coffee characteristics that can be found in regular Speedway. Glad to try this and would happily have again, but wouldn't put the ammo it takes to land this.

Photo of Auracom
4.38/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review #200. 2009 bottle split two ways between Dan and myself. Poured into a CBS snifter straight from cellar temp.

A - More Cigar City-like appearance than I expected. Opal coloring with deep brown hues at the edge. Deep khaki head with quick dissipation that reminds me of Marshal Zhukov's. Good lacing. Slight alcohol legs. Leaves a lot of residual brown coating.

S - Lots of bourbon and oak barrel, as i would hope. Dark chocolate, baker's chocolate, touch of winter fruit, and molasses. Nothing out of the ordinary here, but it has some promise.

T - Relaxed espresso. You can tell the base beer has aged and faded off the dominate character. However, in place of that are good, if not great, barrel elements. Plentiful toasted oak, roasted nuts and malts, hint of coconut, and a robust bourbon whiskey character throughout. Tannic backend that showcases the darker fruit element.

M - Very smooth, nearly Parabola-level. Moderate body, appropriate carbonation, dry barrel finish.

D - Better than expected. The barrel is really well executed, almost like something Hair of the Dog would do if they had a stout. Absolutely not a sweet stout, so don't expect that coming in. Worth trying at least once but not quite worth the trade bait.

Photo of Alieniloquium
4.3/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter. 2009 vintage. Reviewed from notes.

Appearance - Pours with a nice head. Black and viscous. Good retention.

Smell - Boozy smell. Subdued coffee, especially compared to regular Speedway. Decent barrel notes of bourbon and vanilla.

Taste - Awesome. Coffee comes through much more. Good chocolate and a great barrel flavor. Tingly bourbon is especially evident in the finish. Hot from the barrel, not necessarily the beer.

Mouthfeel - Thick and boozy, even if from the barrel, it's a little harsh. Decent carbonation.

Overall - Nice. Really nice. Maybe not any better than regular Speedway, but the barrel adds a nice dimension.

Photo of SkiBum22
4.5/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours black with a thin brown head that leaves a bit of lacing around glass.

S - Very fresh coffee. It is spot on goodness. Warming bourbon with nice oak and vanilla. Rich, creamy chocolate. Very little roast. Amazing.

T - Very nice balanced stout. There was chocolate, bourbon, coffee, sugar, vanilla, and caramel. But none of the flavors were overpowered they were very nicely balanced between each other.

M - Full bodied with a thick, heavy mouthfeel and low carbonation.

O - Very good beer that I am glad I had the opportunity to try considering how rare it is now. The regular speedway is one of my favorite beers and this took it up a notch. Hope to have it again someday.

Photo of Kegatron
4.5/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml foil topped bottle into a couple of snifters. 2009 Edition. Many, many thanks go to Stakem for sharing this huge want of mine with me.

Pours black, topped with a solid finger of thick mocha froth. The retention here is fantastic, with a rich ½ finger that just slathers the sides of the glass with gooey brown oils and spotty lacing. The aroma smells of bourbon barrel right off the bat, with notes of charred oak, vanilla, and coconut that segue into those already delicious flavors of coffee, chocolate, and then toffee along the back. Just a little bit of alcohol warmth sits along the back of the nose as well.

The base sits at the forefront of the taste, with chocolate and toffee sweetness, and I’m happy to find that the coffee still has a lot of life left to it as well. Bourbon moves in along the back, with notes of vanilla, coconut, and then dry burnt wood across the back. The mouthfeel is full bodied, with some light crispness to the carbonation but the tannic slickness here from the wood makes this extremely creamy and easy feeling. For 12% ABV, the alcohol here is just magnificently hid. Just wonderful.

There isn’t quite a total melding of barrel and base Stout here but the beautiful transition from the Speedway to the barrel in the back really makes this beer work. I’m a huge fan of the regular Speedway Stout and this just really took things to a new delicious level for me. Thanks again for the share Adam. I enjoyed every drop of this fantastic beer.

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

750 ml bottle. Courtesy of dmsohyea. Thanks. 2009 vintage. Pours a pitch black with a small light tan chocolate head that has decent retention and leaves a good amount of lacing on the glass. The aroma is big coffee, dark chocolate, a bit of bourbon, vanilla, and some oak. The taste has a bit of sweetness with lots of coffee, vanilla, a bit of bourbon, some oak, and hint of cherry. The finish has slight hint of alcohol, a bit of cherry, and a bit of bitterness. It has the full, creamy mouthfeel that regular speedway has with low carbonation. Amazing beer. This was quite similar to regular speedway (which I love) with some added flavors and complexities from the barrel. The only thing that could improve it would just a tad less sweetness, but other than that I have no complaints.
5/5/4.5/5/4.5

750 ml bottle generously shared by colonelforbin. Thanks Mike. 2007 vintage. Pours black as night with close to no head and no lacing on the glass. The aroma is tons of dark chocolate, a decent amount of alcohol, some cherry, plum, and a hint of coffee. The taste has a light sweetness, with some coffee, cherry, plum, The finish has some alcohol and a bit of bitterness on the finish. Full bodied, but not quite as creamy as regular speedway. Low carbonation. A great beer, but quite a different beast than the 2009 BA Speedway (drank side-by-side). The coffee was faded in this one (unsurprisingly) and it had quite a bit more alcohol present (somewhat surprising). The cherry and fruit came through a bit more in this vintage. Not quite as good as the 2009 vintage.
4.5/4.5/4.5/4/4.5

On tap at the Toronado Stout Festival. 2008 vintage, I believe. Pours a dark black with a little bit of light coming through at the edges. A small chocolaty tan head leaves a decent amount of lacing on the glass, much like the regular Speedway Stout. This beer was served relatively cold and at first seemed like another pretty good imperial stout. The aroma was vanilla, a little dark chocolate, and some bourbon with the taste very similar to the aroma. Once the beer warmed up some it turned into easily one of the best beers I’ve ever had. The aroma is dark chocolate, vanilla, cherry, plum and dark fruits, dark roasted coffee, bourbon, and a little alcohol. The initial taste is sweet with vanilla and cherry and then going into light coffee and dark chocolate. The finish is a bit of bourbon with vanilla and light alcohol and a very light bitterness. Not hot at all. Very smooth beer. Full bodied with a creamy mouthfeel. Light carbonation. If this beer has on flaw, it is that the initial taste is the tiniest bit too sweet. Very different from the base beer. Coffee is a background flavor instead of being front and and center. Tons of different flavors that are all well integrated. A little less bitterness on the finish than the regular Speedway Stout. Both are amazing beers. I would probably give the barrel aged version the slight edge based on its depth and complexity.
5/5/4.5/5/5

Photo of spicelab
4.25/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to mulder1010 for sharing. Reviewed from notes.

Black with a persistent dark tan head.

Caramel fudge, chocolate, liquorice and dark fruits. Sharpness and pungency from the barrel aging, if not real discernible bourbon characteristics.

Moderate char and coffee roast gives way to plenty of rich, dark fruits, caramel, leather, cola, vanilla and hints of booze. Gets better with each sip.

Silky smooth with tingly carbonation. Some booze heat mars an otherwise flawless mouthfeel.

Didn't find the bourbon characteristics overbearing like some other reviewers - in fact found the opposite and that is my chief criticism of the beer. Technically very well done, but was expecting more complexity and barrel character.

Photo of mulder1010
4.03/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 vintage poured into a tulip
Thanks to Nicks6217 for the bottle
No homeless people needed for this :)

A-- Poured straight black. Nothing more, nothing else. Nice looking light brown two finger head that left a good collar of head once settled. Good spotty lacking left on the sides of the glass while drinking.

S-- Coffee, chocolate, roast, oak, ABV and subtle bourbon. Coffee has held up well in the nose I thought. far better quality coffee than other BA stouts have used.

T-- Bourbon, vanilla, Carmel, coffee, and chocolate. far bigger bourbon taste than the smell. Same with carmel. Far bigger and bolder taste than the nose.

M-- Rich and luscious. Medium bodied and medium carbonation. Dangerously drinkable for the ABV, even with the alcohol being pretty obvious in this. My biggest want of all time and it did deliver on many levels. Yet not nearly as good as other BA beers. Still would trade for it again in a heartbeat or get homeless people to sit in line for it

Photo of DavoleBomb
4.3/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter. 2009 vintage, which was released in 2011.

4.5 A: Black color. Two fingers of creamy light brown head. Retention is very good for a brew this big and a sizeable ring of lacing is left.

4.5 S: As expected, there isn't a whole hell of a lot of coffee left in this. There is some coffee, but it might just be coming from the base stout. Lots of chocolate and molasses. Caramel and a touch of smoke to follow. The bourbon is a bit softer than I was expecting, but I'm not disappointed since the base beer is more than solid. Leathery with melon and apple fruitiness. Light oak and enough vanilla to please.

4.0 T: The taste is very good, but it seems like the bourbon is now carrying the beer instead of the opposite found in the nose. Leather, vanilla, melon, smoke, light spiciness, oak, and bourbony booze predominate. Chocolate, molasses, caramel, and coffee from the stout. Don't get me wrong, this is borderline 4.5.

4.5 M: Medium, borderline heavy body. Good moderate carbonation. Nice creaminess. No qualms here.

4.5 D: Very tasty beer, but I wish it was easier to get. It takes a lot to pull this in a trade, so in the future I'll resign myself to obtaining BCSs, CBS, and BA Boris. That said, I'm happy I traded for this because it is a great beer and something everyone should try.

Photo of KickInTheChalice
4.18/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From notes.

The full black color, long lasting tan cap, and high viscosity on BA Speedway definitely signals the brewers intention to make a thick, rich, and complex imperial stout.

For me, there is too much bourbon in the aroma and flavor, stifling one of my favorite base beers. The bourbon and oak actually dry out the mouthfeel and pull some of the smoothness out of the flavor. Chocolate, bitter roasted malt, and a little bit of coffee step in behind the bourbon. It is a little bit acrid at the end of each sip. As it warms up a little bit, I get some vanilla, oak, and milky sweet notes. I would suspect that some of the off-putting bitter coffee and malt notes and the acrid mouthfeel come from the old coffee. Since this was a 2009 bottle, the coffee has significantly faded and could have left behind the old coffee taste that I have observed in a number of aged coffee stouts.

BA Speedway is still enjoyable nonetheless, but this bottle does not do justice to how delicious fresh Speedway Stout is.

Photo of s1ckboy
4.35/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2009 bottle

A - Black body, dark brown 3 finger head with tight bubbles.

S - Bourbon, oak, maybe some vanilla.

T - Bourbon, still a lot of coffee, brown sugar, molasses, big chocolate finish.

M - Full. Dry finish. Good amount of carbonation.

Great beer. Not quite as full bodied as the non BA version. Reminded me a lot of BA sexual chocolate but bigger.

Photo of hooliganlife
4.42/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

big thanks to coryking for this, been wanting this for 3+ years

2009 vintage

pour was deep black with some light creamy and cocoa head. fairly thick looking body.

the bourbon barrel aging is very apparent on the nose. big vanilla and oak with some coffee and chocolate.

as with regular speedway, there was a nice chocolate backbone with a light roasted malt. the barrel aging really brought the life out of this. the vanilla was very smooth. added some richness.

a bit viscous and chewy. moderate carbonation. not much alcohol, fairly smooth.

this was delicious, a great example of a great -bal aged stout.

Photo of rowingbrewer
4.15/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a nearly pitch black with a mocha colored head. the smell is hints of boubon and oak with coffee notes mixed in. the taste is very faint bourbon and coffee with a bit of roastiness in the background. the mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with decent carbonation. overall this is a very good beer, but i think it was a little bit of a let down. bourbon county coffee is better and easier to get.

Photo of drowland
4.58/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Sample straight from a growler courtesy Dakine at RBWG 2010... wow, thanks!!!! Wow. Really good stuff, amazing balance. They’re not bowling you over with barrel aging, but it’s there and it’s perfect. This is really good. Black pour with a very small khaki head. Aroma and taste show pleasant BA characteristics - vanilla, coconut, as well as the deliciousness that is Speedway underneath.

Photo of FosterJM
4.17/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

1059th Review on BA
Bottle to Snifter
750 Ml

2009

Thanks to Jim for sharing
Shared at MrHirschybars tasting

App- Appeared just like the base version. An excellent coloring of dark browns and blacks. Very smooth and rich in the glass with a small head about ½”. A couple lines of cling.

Smell- This was much more layered than the base version. More chocolate vs coffee and of course the bourbon brings in a couple different layers of some oak, vanilla and marshmallow fluff.

Taste- I would like to say this is very good but I just don’t think it does justice to the complexity of the original base beer. This seems to ignore the coffee notes and become a bit one sided with more of that bourbon and molasses notes. I think the middle of the beer it does trail off a little with a semi-drop in balance and is strictly a bourbon stout..

Mouth- A good bit of a medium body behind this one with a medium carbonation. Left behind a good amount bourbon, wood, vanilla and sweet.

Drink- Jim. Thanks for breaking this one out. A very good beer but just not up to par with what I think is one of the best stouts out there for the money. I like this I really did. Not bashing at all and rating just below the original in terms of taste and appearance.

AleSmith Speedway Stout - Bourbon Barrel Aged from AleSmith Brewing Company
100 out of 100 based on 1,614 ratings.