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Imperial Stout - Boulevard Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Imperial StoutImperial Stout

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,007 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,007
Reviews: 322
rAvg: 4.17
pDev: 10.55%
Wants: 245
Gots: 303 | FT: 23
Brewed by:
Boulevard Brewing Co. visit their website
Missouri, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  11.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-23-2008

Like India Pale Ale, the classic Imperial Stouts were originally brewed with high levels of alcohol and hops to withstand the rigors of a long sea journey, not to India but to Imperial Russia and the Baltic States. Our version is an over-the-top riff on the style, with a huge grain bill featuring several kinds of malted barley, wheat, rye, oats, and spelt. Robust grain and coffee flavors are counterbalanced by date and plum notes from the Belgian yeast. To add extra complexity and depth, this Imperial Stout is made up of a blend of freshly brewed beer and several barrel-aged beers, carefully balanced. Za Vas!

63 IBU
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,007 | Reviews: 322 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bbadger
3.75/5  rDev -10.1%

Photo of gregmoscetti
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

Photo of kjkinsey
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of JJWIGHT
3.5/5  rDev -16.1%

Photo of bonkers
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of Beezee
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of t0rin0
3.5/5  rDev -16.1%

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.75/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Catching up review submissions and hit the 1500 mark, so while the review is from last year, maybe it will inspire you to pick a few of these up for *this* fall. Here's to J&T and their tireless efforts.

Appearance - a good black pour, deep burgundy hues around the edges. A thick creamy head of light mocha, starts out at three fingers and slowly fades back.

Aroma - lots of roasted grain accentuated with Hershey's-type chocolate. Some estery alcohol, but the roast grain keeps coming back. Woody notes creep in as this sets up. Excellent!

Taste - dark grain, espresso, and some hot boozy abv. Yowza, even after two years, this has some heat going down. The swallow has some just a nip, maybe hops, maybe the roasty character of the malt. Light woodiness on the aftertaste. With the resilience of the flavors, it makes for a fine extra taste of something, well, extra. The finish is long and lush. Ends nice and warm on this windy, rainy, and blustery fall evening here in Cincy.

Mouthfeel - smooth, velvety, good carbonation.

Drinkability - outstanding beer. Worth trying, waiting for, trading for...it's just worth it.

Photo of danems64
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

Photo of womencantsail
4/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black in color with just a small brown head. Intense roasted malt aroma along with some rich dark fruits. A mild oak and vanilla note in the background with some nice dark chocolate. The flavor is heavy on the roasted malt and dark chocolate with some more mild/subtle coffee and licorice notes. Mild to moderate oak and vanilla with a nice touch of dark fruit, such as black cherry.

Photo of ssjkyle
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

Photo of hiphopj5
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of sammo
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of BillHilly
4/5  rDev -4.1%

Photo of portia99
3.98/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml corked and caged bottle (Batch 2008-1 - bottle 6335 of 11960) poured into a Bruery tulip.

A - Pours a super intense black color with three fingers of thick, frothy, dark khacki foam with excellent staying power. After several long minutes, the head dies down and leaves behind thick webs of lacing on the glass.

S - Lots of dark roasted malts up front...tons of milk chocolate. Rather boozy with some bourbony aromas. Hints of licorice and maybe even a bit of root beer.

T - Very roasty and even a bit smokey, astringent and charcoaly. Faint hints of bourbon, noticeable alcohol. Touches of licorice, caramel, molasses and dark fruits. Lots of yeast derived esters, fruity with hints of berries.

M - Medium bodied, maybe a touch thin for the style. Carbonation is somewhat light, fine bubbled, only marginally tingly and gives a smooth feel. Noticeable alcohol, marginal warmth/burn.

O - Overall, this is a good imperial stout. Held up well over its 4yr life. Smooth, with lots of dark roasted malt and some char, mixed with sweet molasses and caramel. I wouldn't put this up at the highest level for the style but this is still very good.

Photo of BeerHunter76
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of mfgreene
3/5  rDev -28.1%

Photo of WhiskeeTango
4.25/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of draheim
3.8/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 (batch 2011-2, bottle #15909, best by 01-2013) into a snifter. I pull out the characteristically stubborn Boulevard cork with a degree of trepidation, as I know the brewery has confirmed this batch to be possibly infected. On the bright side, they've already reimbursed me for this bottle - so I have literally nothing to lose. Give Boulevard a 5 for customer service anyway!

Pours an opaque black w/ a dense 2-finger deep mocha head that settles slowly to a thin film.

Aroma is deep rich chocolate, bitter roasted malt, and a vaguely lactic red wine sour cherry smell. I can't be sure if this is just my imagination though, since I'm already aware of potential infection. Only way to find out is to take a sip.

Taste is bitter roasted malt, dark chocolate. Little or no detectable sign of infection - or bourbon - on the palate. Bitterness overwhelms everything else. It's good, but maybe a little one-dimensional.

Mouthfeel is smooth and full-bodied.

Overall I'm glad that whatever infection is here didn't destroy the beer, but I'm also a little disappointed at the lack of bourbon barrel characteristics I was expecting. A good imperial stout but not as good as I was hoping for.

Photo of mactrail
4.47/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Just a touch of the funky Brettanomyces in this batch 2011-2. I say it's fabulous and makes for an unexpected complexity in a big stout. Handsome in the Orval chalice with a dark beige head and lacing all over the place. Alcohol heat with fruity flavors and aroma of mincemeat pie.

Barrel flavors are muted but distinct. The impression I get is brandy-flavored fruitcake. Some yeasty flavors, along with raisins. Nutty and biscuity malt along with the roasted flavors. Dry aftertaste with some bitterness, both hoppy and bacterial. This is worth a taste just for the restrained barrel flavor that is in contrast with many boozy, over-wooded beers.

I think Boulevard is doing interesting work with beers and should be given some thanks for their tasting notes and acknowledging the Brett infection.

Photo of Steasy66
3.73/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 1 bomber into Boulevard tulip
A- Jet black, really light colored head which fades fast
S- Roasted malt, some wood, fairly little aroma
T- Big time roasty flavor, some chocolate, don't really get any barrel flavor, reminds me a lot of Ten Fidy.
M- Thick, could use a bit more carbonation in my opinion, but I say that a lot.
O- Good IS, not a great IS, pretty smooth but I would love to taste some barrel character in here.

Photo of MarkFy
3.75/5  rDev -10.1%

Photo of Rhettroactive
1.85/5  rDev -55.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

From 750mL C&C bottle to Devil's Backbone glass on 5/5/12

-- Thanks to whichever of you degenerates supplied this one. --

A: Dark copper and a bit cloudy. A decent pour yields a small head and a reasonable collar.

S: Ugh...infection has set in, and it ain't good.

T: It's a bit better then the nose, at least. I do get some bourbon and chocolate. But as it warms, out comes the hiney hole.

M: If it weren't for the infection, I'd bet this would be pretty solid. It's got the proper structure, but it's overly bubbly and simply not right for a bigger BA RIS like this.

O: To clarify: this is not one of the (so-called) intenionally soured Imperial Stouts. I'm disappointed, as I really feel this has the makings of a good beer. But in it's current state, I highly recommend saving your dinero and cellar space for something that actually tastes good.

Another in a recent run of underwhelming Boulevard brews.

Drain pour.

Photo of AaronBurr
4.5/5  rDev +7.9%

Photo of ohhsnap
5/5  rDev +19.9%

Imperial Stout from Boulevard Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 1,007 ratings.