Dismiss Notice
Microbrew Invitational
Join us June 3 + 4 in Boston and help us drink 300+ beers, ciders, kombuchas, meads, sakes and more!

TICKETS: beeradvocate.com/micro/

Bourbon Barrel Aged Shipwreck Porter | Arcadia Brewing Company

321 Reviews
no score
Send samples
For Trade:
Bourbon Barrel Aged Shipwreck PorterBourbon Barrel Aged Shipwreck Porter

Brewed by:
Arcadia Brewing Company
Michigan, United States | website

Style: Baltic Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by jale on 02-01-2011

User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 321 | Ratings: 971
Photo of GarthDanielson
4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a snifter, the beer is jet black, with no head. Nose of booze, vanilla, molasses, and subtle chocolate. Flavors are sweet, with forward notes of vanilla, chocolate, coffee, booze, and woody highlights. Smooth, creamy body, with a bourbon and chocolate aftertaste. The finish is smooth, rich, and velvety. Good beer.

 341 characters

Photo of oberon
3.97/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours nearly jet black except for for some reddish brown slightly showing thru when held to the light,a thin beige head atop.Bourbon,butteriness, and dark fruit dominates the nose,quite strong indeed.Very smooth feel with not much carbonation,it goes down very easy.Vanilla and butter up front on the palate,almost dessert-like,the alcohol hits in the back end but also some drying earthiness to keep everything in somewhat balance.Arcadia is an old school MI. brewery,some clunkers but this is pretty good.

 507 characters

Photo of Dactrius
4.1/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

More carbonation than on a lot of BB beers but a look that's not quite as nice as some others. Taste and feel are both solid with the baltic porter flavor coming through nicely. Unfortunately it is quite thin. Many of its "shortcomings" I probably shouldn't be taking issue with since it's a porter and not a stout. It seems overpriced at $8 for a bottle but considering that I think $15 for a BB bomber is reasonable I guess it's not so bad. So I guess after all that, I do recommend it and wish I had bought another bottle to cellar.

 540 characters

Photo of Ozzylizard
4.49/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Undated bottle at 42 degrees into shaker
$ 8.99/12moz bottle at Oppermann’s
Aroma – slight bourbon aroma
Head average (3.5 cm, aggressive pour), light brown, frothy, diminishing to four mm ring and layer
Lacing excellent – complete wide rings of tiny to small bubbles
Body dark brown/black, opaque
Flavor – very much of bourbon, slightly sweet and oaky, followed by a slight bitterness with alcohol coming through; no hops, no diacetyl
Palate – full, creamy, soft carbonation

Appearance 4.25, aroma 4.5, Flavor 4.5, Palate 4.5, Overall 4.5

 551 characters

Photo of vic21234
4.63/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a snifter. Bottled date is not listed but I assume it is 2015 Vintage as it was just released at my local shop.

A- Pours a fairly thin black, with a large amount of khaki head that slowly fades.

S- Very nice smelling beer, with aromas of chocolate, oak, and plenty of bourbon.

T- Tons of bourbon and oak takes over each sip, with some notes of chocolate and dark malts.

M- Medium bodied, bourbon forward, great sipping beer.

I was thoroughly impressed with this one. Must grab a few more to age.

 530 characters

Photo of darktronica
4.39/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2014 vintage. Pours a very thin layer of tan foam that dissipates over several minutes, leaving a ring of head around the rim of the glass and some modest lacing. The entire experience is extremely smooth and well-integrated, a wonderful example of a vinous Baltic porter. Aromas and flavors are both quite complex and balanced, with no particular element dominating the others. Raisin, black currant, dark chocolate, port, raw cacao, cherry, and hazelnut are all present, creating a deeply rewarding experience. Easy to drink this too quickly, given that the 12% alcohol is very well-hidden.

 592 characters

Photo of Ohiovania
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looks nice. Light tan head.

Smells really nice. vanilla, toffee, chocolate, and other sweet breads.

Tastes falls a little short but still very nice. Less pronounced vanilla and toffee although the whiskey comes through more and there is a little heat but it's 12% so what do you expect.

Mouth feel is thin but this is overall a nice stab at a BA Baltic Porter.

 365 characters

Photo of Scottyg33
4.09/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Over priced but a pretty good beer. Strong bourbon smell and flavor, over powers any other flavors in it but I like bourbon so im good with that. I would buy more if it was a little more reasonable.

 198 characters

Photo of chefbrady
4.47/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pleasantly surprised. I think this beer is under rated. Appearance is that of an old ale- not very dark. Aroma is fantastic- root beer, vanilla, much bourbon. Taste luckily follows the nose to the T. Nice bourbon presence, smooth at 12% overall a world class BA Baltic.

 269 characters

Photo of BlurryVisi0n
3.89/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a flute from a 12oz. bottle.

Appearance: Dark thin black-brown with medium bubbles on the body. Tan head with a vigorous pour is about a notch below a finger's length.

Smell: Hard whiskey scent, feels like it was blended with dessert wine and chocolate.

Taste: Heavy whiskey taste with a light milk chocolate feel. Little sweet but not bad.

Mouth: Medium carbonation and very sticky, like gum on the bottom of your shoe. Pairing it with some crackers and I still feel the heavy bourbon after-taste.

Overall: Not bad at all. There are some better porters out there especially when you factor how much you're paying for each bottle. Better paired with some dessert, like your side of fries to your burger. Salud!

 730 characters

Photo of OGShotzy
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: No head retained at all. Sporadic light tan bubbles cling to the glass, but the middle is an opaque, black swamp.

S: Some barrel. Some licorice. Also, caramel.

T: first sip is a lot of barrel. As it warms, the flavors come out to say hello. Caramel, toffee, maybe even some dark licorice, which adds some welcomed bitterness.

F: perfect for a BA porter. Almost stout-like, but I am drinking this in mid-July, and it's not nearly as thick.

 444 characters

Photo of manfromanotherplace
4.39/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Looks like cola, carbonation and virtually no head. The smell is startling, pretty much smells like a glass of whiskey. The taste is the best part, its boozy and potent but with mellow caramel undertones at the end which balance out this beer perfectly. The best things in life are acquired tastes, and this is an acquired taste.as a sipper this beer makes perfect sense, not for everyone though, for fans of bourbon aged stouts or porters, for those this is a treat but at 10 bucks a bottle its a pricey one.

 509 characters

Photo of yesterdayfaraway
3.42/5  rDev -17%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

L: Black with a tan head
S: Subtle bourbon and dark fruit juices
T: A little bourbon, dark fruit with peppery notes. Lacks flavor, I had high hopes for big flavor since it's and aged in bourbon barrels. 12%
F: Kind of thin, a bit of carbonation and it finishes dry.
O: Not terrible, just not worth buying again.

 315 characters

Photo of BlackBeerPirate
4.13/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A - Black/Brown tan head, some lace
S - Oak woody, Bourbon nose
T - Bold, spiced, some hop but big malty, alcohol notes. Complex.
M - warming boozy finish
O - This Porter aged well. It has some bite in the alcohol, and some spice

 230 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The ever-steady Shipwreck porter goes under the knife, or at least under the barrel for an extreme make-over that hardly resembles the original robust porter. This bourbon infused taste is extreme in its bourbon character and savory because of its added age.

The Bourbon Barrel Shipwreck is the common deep and ominously dark brown, hinging on black although brazenly tawny at its extreme margins. As the nose hovers over its dainty creme-like froth, the strong booze of bourbon is obvious, along with its oak, charred fruit and roasted grain. To taste, its the malty-sweet molasses, chocolate and caramel to coat the palate first.

Those sweeter malt tendencies saturates the mouth deeply and provides a buffer for the intensity of bourbon to come. Burnt toast, espresso and an nutty taste transitions from sweet to earth while the booze soaked flavor grows. Grilled cherry, berry and currant lurk in the background while the barrel's caramel, vanilla and oak presence dominates the finish.

Full to taste but dry and roasty,the porter carries a dry, semi-ash, semi-powdery tannic character in mouthfeel. With the coffee-like bitterness balancing the sweetness and facilitating dryness, its the palate numbing bourbon that shapes the final impressions and turns this otherwise somber and drinkable porter into a slow sipping affair, easily replacing sherry or cognac as an after dinner digestive.

 1,398 characters

Photo of TreyIsWilson
4.12/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours black with a very thin tan head. Light amount of soapy lacing.

S - Aroma is bourbon, vanilla, and chocolate.

T - The flavor follows the aroma with bourbon, vanilla, and dark chocolate upfront. There are some dark roasted malts and oak that really show up midpalate. Light alcohol warmth in the finish.

M - Medium bodied with low carbonation. The mouthfeel is smooth and creamy.

O - Very tasty beer. Lots of rich flavors throughout. This is a delicious sipper.

 474 characters

Photo of NavyGoat
4.08/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just tried this Porter and I would drink again; probably paid too much for this 12 oz bottle but what the heck. Very nice smell of oak bourbon barrels and great look. The taste is yummy but does have a slight bite.

 216 characters

Photo of pagriley
3.52/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Eww, Not sure if this is a bad bottle or just a bad beer, but odd. Earthy and off smelling, but not sharp or acidic. Muddy and muted on the palate with no real defined barrel character or clean base chocolate / malt notes. Overall a mess of a beer.

 252 characters

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.29/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

huge fan of the style, i say that a lot, but this bourbon barrel edition has to be one of the most decadent beverages going. at 12% abv and with enough boozy sweetness to render its lager yeast past a distant memory. a half shade lighter than shiny black shoe polish, the head surges near the rim of the glass on the pour, and only relaxes slowly. it smells incredible, dry fruity must, the wood is very very prominent, and the lack of bitterness in the malt base means the sweetness of the bourbon is high. they may have overshot the grain bill just a bit, as this beastly bodied brew has enough sugar to keep on going up. good bourbon barrels i suspect, as there are no weird thin fusel notes on this, and the charcoal aspect is there all the way. ashy almost burnt malt flavor in the middle, before it gives way to traces of rum, licorice, and espresso. potting soil earthiness to it as well before the sugars come on. the alcohol is very strong, no denying that, i wonder what lager yeast they used to get it here. the science is as interesting as the final product. a bold but elegant brew on the whole, my first form arcadia. maybe not my favorite baltic porter, as the thing that makes that style awesome is paved over a bit here, but the beer is of astounding quality. id like to cellar one awhile. thanks to thebrewo for opening this one with me!

 1,355 characters

Photo of Greywulfken
4.58/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A: black body of beer, slim finger of tan foam atop; naught but a few motes of lace trailed behind...

S: potent bourbon, chocolate and vanilla issued forth and persisted throughout the drink...

T: the bourbon and wood, chocolaty malts and vanilla-like accents from the nose were all there, coupled with a strong anise/licorice flavor

M: medium-bodied, low carbonation, low bitterness; vague bourbon barrel vapors in the mouth; the licorice character really wrapped itself around my tongue and stayed there - the best feel of any porter I've ever had

O: completely stunned - not often partial to porters, this one easily eclipsed the very best of 'em - the bourbon barrel aging was superior, coupled with some favorite flavors and feels. Gotta try it.

 755 characters

Photo of Axnjxn
4.23/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

dark brown pour, rich creamy beige head. massive bourbon aroma right away. tons of vanilla as well. taste is creamy smooth with the vanilla really shining through. lots of chocolate too. the bottle has been sitting for over 2 years now so i dont get much booze. age has done this well. i think im drinking it at the perfect time. body isnt the fullest but its not meant to be for the style. very very easy to drink. awesome!

 425 characters

Photo of breakingbland
3.87/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle. Let it warm-up a bit from fridge temperature. The beer is a nearly opaque black-brown with red highlights. There was a scant dark brown head. The aroma is fairly typical of a barrel aged beer: oak and bourbon with a hint of sweet malt -- and virtually no hops. The taste follows, but the oak and bourbon are slightly downplayed compared to other similar barrel aged beers, letting more of the porter's character to shine through. As a result, some roasty malt is evident. The body is medium with medium-light carbonation. Overall, this is more what I'm looking for in a barrel aged beer: less of the cloying oak and bourbon sweetness that is characteristic of many others. Too bad it's so pricey, so this one will remain a special treat.

 759 characters

Photo of Stevedore
3.58/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Dark brown body, quarter finger offwhite head, fair retention time, minimal lacing. Pours essentially to flatness in a hurry. About as expected for a big BA porter like this.

S- Milk chocolate, bitter roast, bourbon, a bit of oak and mustiness. Mostly bitter roast and chocolate. A reasonbly hefty bourbon barrel nose, hints of vanilla as well.

F- A bit of an astringent bitterness, bourbon flavours, milk chocolate, coffee. Decent complexity, but a hefty amount of bourbon makes this a fairly hot drinker. A bit of umami. It all seems to be a bit muddled in my opinion, but certainly not terrible.

M- Medium-thin bodied, low in carbonation. A bit sticky with some umami on the aftertaste. As mentioned previously, it is quite a hot beer.

O- Not my thing. Decent, but hasn't melded together as well as it could have.

 823 characters

Photo of infinitebruner
3.9/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

January 11, 2015

12 oz bottle, snifter

A – Black, slightly oily, with high viscosity. Appears to be clear, but mostly opaque. A thin layer of light tan head with low retention.

S – Vanilla and bourbon, oak barrel character is up front. Some roastiness and chocolate, caramel. Hop aroma is not discernible.

T – Vanilla along with some bourbon, oaky, alcohol warmth. Roasted but not very bitter malt, with some chocolate in the mix. Hops might be slightly herbal/medicinal, but that may just be the bourbon. Hop bitterness in the finish.

M – Alcohol is a bit harsh. Low carbonation and medium body, relatively thin compared to complexity of aroma and flavor. Very sweet to start and then bitter to finish. A bitter and slightly astringent aftertaste.

O – Has an aroma profile to match the best barrel aged beers, but the alcohol is a bit harsh and the bitterness is not very pleasant in the finish. A tasty but unbalanced beer, to a fault in this case.

 977 characters

Photo of Barnoloid
4.37/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is a very bourbon forward barrel aged porter. The booziness is apparent from the nose right from the get go. Definitely get a lot of toffee, caramel and chocolate here. At 12% this packs a punch, but it goes down easier than the ABV would have you imagine. A sipper with complexity and a smooth mouthfeel.

 310 characters

Bourbon Barrel Aged Shipwreck Porter from Arcadia Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 321 ratings.