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AleSmith Decadence 2007 Imperial Porter Barrel Aged - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
AleSmith Decadence 2007 Imperial Porter Barrel AgedAleSmith Decadence 2007 Imperial Porter Barrel Aged

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

76 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 76
Reviews: 60
rAvg: 4.39
pDev: 10.71%
Wants: 107
Gots: 9 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

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

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: scottoale on 03-13-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 76 | Reviews: 60 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by CrellMoset:
Photo of CrellMoset
CrellMoset

Virginia

4.53/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Courtesy of another great midwestern trader, this one was poured in to a 22 oz. snifter. Bottle # 154/817.

Appearance: How is it that the barrel aged version of a beer could have an appearance superior to a non-barrel aged versions? Inexplicably, this one does, and it's not a minor step up - it's a huge step up. The color is similar - a smoky obsidian, opaque save for around the edges, with a nice two finger fizzy head that has superior sticking power compared with the non-bal version. But the lacing is remarkably improved, in a way that sort of makes me doubt the way I approach this sort of thing. Normally, one assumes that barrel aging thins a beer and its sticking potential and adds spirit alcohol and additional overtones and chemicals that disrupt the retention; at least, enough to overwhelm any retention positive that comes from the oak and the wood spike. Swirls and spikes and swaths of glittery bright tawny lacing decorate the sides of the snifter,

Aroma: Good, but not great. Mellow, aromatic, and solidly inviting, with a lot of good stuff going on. Toast and coconut mingle most expertly, both courtesy of obvious sources, though there's plenty of else to contribute here. Vanilla is sweet, and hints of cinnamon and oak are on equal footing with cocoa and bourbon to make for a pretty well-rounded nose.

Taste: An abundantly flavorful brew. First, let me echo everything I said about the non-barrel aged version of this beer. It's a quintessential porter, full of roast, toast, caramel, toffee, earth, cocoa, and stone fruit - from peaches and apricots to cherries and lychees, it's a fairly varied mouth. And certainly, the fact that it's an imperial porter sets it apart even further - it's a little more fruity, a little sweeter, and a little more ... well, everything than I imagine its traditional "joe plumber" porter would be. But I talked about all that in my previous review. What elevates this beer from a 4.5 to a 5.0 is the fantastic way in which the barrel aging augments, complements, amplifies, and enhances everything present in the base beer.

First of all, it's not intense. It's not over the top. And even when you sit there, hold it in your mouth, swirl it around ... it's refined, and well-blended. Perhaps part of that's the age - this beer is certainly four years old. But there's still a solid amount - and perhaps the right amount - of spice, energetic, bold, with enough counterbalance to the malt presence to make it refined, balanced, evenhanded. There's a slew of coconut and even more vanilla contributed by the barrels, but also a few wooden notes, including a very strong green oak note that actually does a decent job - at least for a while - of counteracting the bourbon presence. But the bourbon is enhanced significantly as this one warms, contributing a strong, sweet, toasty, earthy spice to the remainder of the experience. The sweetness here hits a true perfect balance, hitting that fantastically sweet sweet spot that lies right between "just right" and "just righter." Stellar.

Mouthfeel: Fat, a little sticky, slightly oily, but remarkably even, smooth, and velvety, with an excellent amount of lift. The carbonation on this lasts for quite some time, making for a creamy, toasty, bourbon-y milkshake sort of feel - thick but silky.

Drinkability: A step up. This paired marvelously with with some gouda, and I'm wishing I had some dark chocolate lying around. A beer that really exemplifies what barrel aging properly can accomplish, I enjoyed this much more than the -bal Speedway I had the other week for my 1200th review - much more balance and synergy going on here than in that beer. And the 10% - while noticeable and definitely present - wasn't too much of a hurdle to overcome. Definitely worth seeking out, though I imagine the supply has considerably dwindled at this point.

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2011 19:16:44 | More by CrellMoset
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zestar

California

4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

07-19-2014 06:13:39 | More by zestar
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Texas

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Wisconsin

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11-02-2013 03:34:27 | More by BarrytheBear
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Wisconsin

4.25/5  rDev -3.2%

11-02-2013 03:04:23 | More by madtowndmb1
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UCLABrewN84

California

4/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle pour at Woodshop 8 held at The Hermosillo in Los Angeles, CA.

Thanks to aussy13 for sharing this one.

Pours a murky brown with a foamy khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, bourbon, and wood aromas. Taste is much the same with bourbon and wood flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roasty bitterness and an alcohol kick on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that has held up well until now but has a slightly better smell in my opinion.

Serving type: bottle

10-28-2013 16:09:06 | More by UCLABrewN84
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drummermattie02

Texas

4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

04-22-2013 14:17:27 | More by drummermattie02
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Azrael


4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

02-08-2013 04:12:39 | More by Azrael
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ehammond1


3.75/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle (2009) (608/817)

Acquired via trade
Thanks, itk1!

(Aged for ~4 years)

Very dark brown, very nearly black, with a small to moderately-sized dark brown head of small bubbles. Leaves the glass oily and spotted with stick. Pretty barrel-aged porter.

The aroma is the weakest aspect of this beer, and I believe age has not helped matters here at all. Especially at the cold temperatures, the main attributes were strong oxidation, leather, and some root vegetable characteristics, unfortunately. That being said, as the beer warms, truly nice layers of chocolate and a very mild bourbon and oak presence emerged. Overall, especially after reading how extraordinary the aroma was apparently in other bottles, the aroma was not great and was hurt greatly by time, is my estimation.

The flavor, however, was still quite nice, and not nearly as oxidized as the aroma. Nice layers of chocolates coat the mouth, along with a mild bourbon and oak character. There's some leather and oxidation as well. Alcohol is incredibly well hidden. Enjoyable, but not other-worldly.

A very full, rich, decadent, sticky sipper. Very nice.

Glad I got to try this one, but age did this bottle no help. Drink now if you got any of these leftovers sitting around!

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2013 20:42:37 | More by ehammond1
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Gobzilla

California

4.43/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: poured almost black in color with dark brown highlights and a thin head that left a little lacing sticking to the glass.

S: plenty of sweetness in the aroma such as caramell, toffee, and brown sugar with great bourbon barrel character that showed nice vanilla notes but also with good roastiness and some booze there as well.

T: great bourbon barrel vanilla character on the palate which added nice dimension to it alongside caramel, toffee, and brown sugar sweetness, hints of coffee, good roasted malts and plenty of booze for the age of the bottle.

M: the brew was medium in body with fair amount of carbonation which had a sweet, roasty, slightly astringent, boozy and creamy finish.

O: I'm glad to have tried the base beer allongside the BA aged version. Honestly thought both were solid but I like the robust flavors the barrel brought out so I'll go with the BA version.

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2012 16:44:03 | More by Gobzilla
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t0rin0

California

4.75/5  rDev +8.2%

08-12-2012 12:29:08 | More by t0rin0
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brystmar

Texas

4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Opened alongside the regular '07 Decadence at a tasting last night. Thanks to RoyMunson for the trade!

Nose brings bourbon, toffee, cocoa, oak, a roasty base, and booze to my nostrils. Same notes in the taste, though there's an added layer of depth from the barrels. A kiss of sweetness midway through. A few of the other flavors in here reminded me of a Scotch Ale.

Although I enjoyed both thoroughly, this was certainly more complex than the base beer. The barrel character did wonders to the (already spectacular) base, creating a top-notch BA porter. Wish I had another bottle :(

Serving type: bottle

05-13-2012 18:45:32 | More by brystmar
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whartontallboy

New York

5/5  rDev +13.9%

05-13-2012 01:10:51 | More by whartontallboy
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ZX6Chris

California

5/5  rDev +13.9%

03-21-2012 16:58:21 | More by ZX6Chris
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Rempo

Indiana

3/5  rDev -31.7%

11-20-2011 18:49:56 | More by Rempo
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jlb502

California

5/5  rDev +13.9%

11-20-2011 04:56:03 | More by jlb502
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xnicknj

Pennsylvania

4.75/5  rDev +8.2%

11-20-2011 00:32:22 | More by xnicknj
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HopStoopid120

Connecticut

5/5  rDev +13.9%

11-16-2011 03:50:29 | More by HopStoopid120
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ygtbsm94

Virginia

3/5  rDev -31.7%

11-15-2011 04:47:27 | More by ygtbsm94
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Ohio

4/5  rDev -8.9%

11-15-2011 02:09:08 | More by seeswo
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westcoastbeerlvr

California

4.5/5  rDev +2.5%

11-14-2011 22:51:58 | More by westcoastbeerlvr
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Chriscrundwell12

Minnesota

4.43/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle sharred with many BA's at this years Darkness Eve tasting. Thanks capra12 for sharing this beer.

A- The initial pour is a little darker than regular version, red hues come out as well, small bubbly tan head that dissipates quickly to nothing.
S- The aroma is very nice, love the vanilla and bourbon that comes out right away, roasted malts, slight coffee, slight chocolate, caramel, toffee, slight brown sugar.
T- Tastes almost identical to the aroma, perfect amount of bourbon comes out right away, sweet vanilla notes, caramel, slight roasted malts, brown sugar, really nice.
M- Medium/big mouth feel, well carbonated, smooth drinking, nice warmth as it goes down.
O- Really impressed with the Barrel Aged version, better than the original, adds a really nice layer of complexity that only improves the beer.

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2011 19:41:03 | More by Chriscrundwell12
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TurdFurgison

Ohio

4.43/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to jampics2 for bringing this to a Tuesday night tasting in northern OH (thanks Bobby!). This pours a dark brown color with a thick cap of tan foam. The aroma is completely perfect, the barrels used by Alesmith must have the perfect amount of liquor in them before the beer is added, they all end up being so appealing. Chocolate and vanilla, roasty sweet malts, bourbon, everything you could want and expect in a BA porter.

And it all comes through in the flavor, along with toffee-like malts, this is seriously tasty. No hops presence at all, this is a bourbon-heavy malt bomb that really satisfies. A slow sipper, i didn't want my glass to empty too quickly. Luckily there were only 4 of us and we all got strong pours, I made this last.

Medium carbonation, actually a pretty good amount of carbonation for a barrel aged beer, nice mouthfeel overall. This was as good as I'd hoped, highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

08-11-2011 03:10:48 | More by TurdFurgison
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BOLTZ7555

Arizona

4.93/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle 292 shared by Sparky27 @ Hellbilly’s Holiday Tasting...THANKS ERIC!!! Pure ebony pour with a 1/2 inch creamy eggshell head that diminishes into a film that defiantly stays until the last sip. Incredibly fragrant. Vanilla, oak, bourbon, cocoa, and caramel fill the nostrils. Ignites the palate...rich, chocolaty, and complex. So much going on. Maple syrup, toasted marshmallow, and brown sugar. Thick and viscous. WOW!!! AleSmith ROCKS!!!

Serving type: bottle

05-29-2011 06:05:35 | More by BOLTZ7555
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Urbancaver

Ohio

4.5/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice light brown. Fairly Clear. Very nice bubbly head that almost completely disappears quickly. Smells of bourbon and vanilla with a sweet malty background. Some light roast on the nose as well. Tastes sweet and vanilla heavy. Some light oakiness on the tongue but the vanilla comes through strongest. Malts faid as the bourbon warms. Very smooth and well balanced.

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2011 15:08:28 | More by Urbancaver
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AleSmith Decadence 2007 Imperial Porter Barrel Aged from AleSmith Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 76 ratings.