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Black Gold Imperial Stout - Bourbon Barrel Aged (Brewmaster Reserve) - Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub

Not Rated.
Black Gold Imperial Stout - Bourbon Barrel Aged (Brewmaster Reserve)Black Gold Imperial Stout - Bourbon Barrel Aged (Brewmaster Reserve)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

461 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 461
Reviews: 262
rAvg: 3.97
pDev: 13.1%
Wants: 79
Gots: 126 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  9.60% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
3rd Release - 2013 (9.6% ABV)
2nd Release - 2011 (11.4% ABV)
1st Release - February 2009 (10.5% ABV).

After its initial release in February 2008, this Imperial Stout was aged for about 10 months in Bourbon casks from Kentucky.

(Beer added by: msubulldog25 on 02-02-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 461 | Reviews: 262 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of sommersb
4/5  rDev +0.8%

sommersb, Mar 24, 2012
Photo of johnnyboy76
4/5  rDev +0.8%

johnnyboy76, Feb 24, 2013
Photo of jkane101
4/5  rDev +0.8%

jkane101, Jun 06, 2013
Photo of BillHilly
4/5  rDev +0.8%

BillHilly, Nov 03, 2013
Photo of ksimons
3.9/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

2013 Release 9.6%ABV

A-silky black with about a fingers worth of tan head that leaves a layer of lace

S-you can really smell the bourbon in this beer! Roasted malt, dark chocolate, and vanilla round things out

T-the taste is also full of bourbon which kind of masks the rest of the flavors, which include slightly roasted malt, mocha, light molasses, vanilla, and light spicy alcohol. Alcohol is nicely blended in.

M-actually kind of thin body and carbonation, bourbon sweetness left on the tongue

Overall sort of disappointed. Was really excited to try this, but after the smell the beer kind of went downhill. Not enough body or flavor beyond bourbon to give it much depth.

ksimons, Apr 13, 2013
Photo of alcstradamus
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes

Black pour with a finger of head. Aroma is some nice toffee and oak from the barrel aging on top of a hoppy, sweet base.

The flavor is huge on vanilla from start to finish. Surely a byproduct of the barrel aging. Underneath is a bit of dry cocoa and some citrus hoppiness. Fairly sweet but not cloying.

The body is medium and carbonation has a bit of a sting. Overall, I am definitely impressed by this beer. The vanilla aspect is especially noteworthy.

alcstradamus, Mar 13, 2010
Photo of megamass
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%

megamass, Feb 19, 2014
Photo of Cloaked_Phantom
4/5  rDev +0.8%

Cloaked_Phantom, Jan 01, 2014
Photo of scottoale
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz. bomber with a single half-wrap black, gold and white label and thin gold foil over the cap. It pours into my Duvel tulip a very dark brown with a solid two-finger ivory-brown head. Good carbonation is visible, head retention is fair and some nice sticky web lace clings to the glass initially.

The aroma is dynamite, with sweet barrel-aged goodness. Lots of sweet caramel malt, molasses, vanilla, oak, charcoal and of course, bourbon. Could sit and smell this stuff all day long.

The flavor is just as it smells with big malty sweetness and rich tones pulled from the bourbon barrels. Good depth with sweetness, oakiness and a very mild booziness. A beautiful balance with the charcoal adding to the bitter, mildly warming finish. Very well done here.

On the lighter side of full bodied, pretty smooth all around mouthfeel and a barrel-aged licorice like aftertaste that satisfies. A solid brew for this style, not the biggest but certainly up there with the best. Oh so drinkable, really wish I had more of this tasty stout...seek it. Thanks to travisd13 for sending me this gem!

scottoale, Apr 21, 2009
Photo of CloudStrife
4/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a snifter. Brewmasters Reserve 2013.

A: Pours a dark brown appearing black in the glass with a tannish brown head on top. Fairly quick to dissipate it leaves a few spots of lacing.

S: Loads of bourbon notes on this one along with oak and vanilla. Dark fruits are fairly heavy along with a pleasant chocolate aroma. Touch of booze on the backend.

T: Isnt as much of a bourbon bomb as the nose would lead to believe but has a great roasted malt and chocolate profile. Oak and vanilla round out the backend smoothing things out.

M: Medium body with low carbonation. A bit lighter than most stouts on the market as there is a slight watery aspect. Nice mellow feel to it which is enjoyable.

Overall was very difficult to pass up at under $5 a bottle but I am glad I picked a couple up. Well balanced beer that is a good entry level bourbon beer.

CloudStrife, Nov 28, 2013
Photo of djre4orm
4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

djre4orm, Jun 13, 2013
Photo of kirok1999
4.6/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Been waiting for this one for a while and my patience just gave out. Pours a clear black, just a little garnet around the edge of the glass and a slight dark head.
Smells like chocolate candy. Yeah, that's it.
Taste is phenomenal. It's like chocolate cake batter in a glass. Maybe you think that's bad but in this case it is wonderful. I honestly don't know how they get that much sweet chocolate taste out of 4 basic ingredients. It's thick, lush and creamy. Sweet in other ways than chocolate, caramel, slight fruit notes. The bourbon comes through in a rich aftertaste that warms beautifully. There is no way I could think of to improve the taste so it got a 5.
Easy enough to drink but the chocolate might make it hard to drink too much of it.
Simply wonderful. Why can't I brew beer like this?

kirok1999, Aug 31, 2007
Photo of cindyjeffsmith
4.47/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: black as an imp stout should be. Head is a tad thin but nice lacing.
Smell: Oh man. Bourbon and wood. That nice creamy oak smell of a barrel ageing done right.
Taste: more of the same goodness. Not that complex, but smooth bourbon stout.
Overall: snagged this when I couldn't get a whole case of abyss. Glad I did.

cindyjeffsmith, Dec 02, 2011
Photo of cswhitehorse
4.03/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The Black Gold Imperial poured a viscous oil color with a single finger foam head that dissipated pretty quickly. Not much in the way of lacing. The bottle came in a cool black and gold label with gold foil on the top.

The smell initially was all oak and bourbon. As it warmed and went on I could pull out some molasses and vanilla. The taste was nice but to me but less complex than what i was expecting. You got the burn of the 10.5 abv, the slight coffee bitterness and oak and bourbon. It was thin to me in relation to other imperial stouts I have tried. It was almost an imperial porter with its thin-ness. Overall not a bad brew but has a little way to go to get to the top of the class.

cswhitehorse, Feb 16, 2009
Photo of csustar001
4/5  rDev +0.8%

csustar001, Apr 30, 2014
Photo of RuckusDu
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%

RuckusDu, Jan 07, 2013
Photo of klewis
4.22/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A: Pitch black with a small bubbly head that subsides to a thick halo. No lacing.

S: Plenty of bourbon with a light oak smell. Lacking the aromas typically expected from a stout.

T: Strong bourbon taste with oak and vanilla up front. Flavors of anise and semi-sweet chocolate creep into the mix as the heat subsides. An interesting and complex flavor that takes several seconds to fully experience.

M: Full-bodied and thick with light carbonation. Sticky and viscous.

D: The bourbon is a bit over the top and makes this one a bit rough to drink, but otherwise, a damn fine beer.

klewis, Apr 24, 2009
Photo of GennyCreamAle
4.25/5  rDev +7.1%

GennyCreamAle, Sep 14, 2013
Photo of Pens1967
4.5/5  rDev +13.4%

Pens1967, Nov 29, 2013
Photo of RMoeNay
3.5/5  rDev -11.8%

RMoeNay, Jun 24, 2013
Photo of hopfacebrew
4.03/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased 2-13-2011. Poured from black bottle to pint glass.

A - The beer pours a deep dark brown nearly black color with a huge 2 finger dark brown head. As the beer sits the head slowly fades and turns more of a beige color.

S - The bourbon aroma dominates the nose. A nice roasted chocolate malt is noticeable behind the bourbon with a noticeable heat.

T - Similar to the nose the bourbon flavor strikes first. I found it to be a bit sharp and wonder if I cellared this beer for a while to let it mellow how it'd turn out. My guess is it would be great. The middle of the brew brings a nice roasted malt character with hints of chocolate, vanilla, coffee and alcohol warmth. The beer finishes strong but clean.

M - Full bodied with mild carbonation.

D - It's easy to put down for such a strong beer but again I think it'd be better with a little age.

Overall, I enjoyed this beer. Not my favorite Russian Imperial but it would good. I would buy again, in fact I plan on heading back and picking up another bottle or two to put away. Recommended.

Note: This review was a re-post from my former account, jmkratt, which was hacked and I lost all my reviews...sorry for the redundancy.

Serving type: bottle

Reviewed on: 02-15-2011 02:45:25

hopfacebrew, Jan 27, 2012
Photo of jondeelee
3.9/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Full Sail Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Stout (2013 release, 9.6% ABV) opens to a rich, smoky, complex, chocolaty, bourbon-laced aroma that is instantly appealing. Bourbon-soaked chocolate bon-bons are perhaps the closest confection in aroma, with their rich, thick milk chocolate and smoky vanilla bourbon notes, but add to that layers of coffee and ash, tobacco and heavy cream, as well as caramel and touches of molasses, and that served with a thick, heavily-toasted slice of rich yeasty brown bread, and you’re getting close. The beer is very nicely balanced, despite the enormity and variation in the aromas, each note playing well off the others. The sugars are especially nice, with fig, date raisin, and lychee fruit esters, lending a port-like quality to the aromas that meshes nicely with the bourbon. In fact, in a blind smelling test, this beer might easily be mistaken for port, especially after it has sat open for a few minutes and the initial heavy bourbon and ash shock has wafted away. As a whole, this smells fantastic.

On the tongue, the beer is very alcoholic, bourbon and port trouncing the tastebuds almost immediately, followed by chocolate liqueur candies, the stout tasting very much like a cognac-filled chocolate treat. Late in the mouthful a few measures of ash and tobacco come through, as well as dollops of brown bread, but it’s mainly the chocolate liqueur candy that dominates, being fairly sweet and containing heavy alcohol vapors. The mouthfeel is, however, strangely light, a watery medium-light at best, making the beer seem like the bourbon barrel aging is responsible for much of the taste in here, and that without it, the stout would only be semi-decent. Aftertaste is ash and tobacco, with lingering sugars and bourbon.

Overall, while the aromas in here were fantastic, the beer didn’t quite live up to its initial promises, and the heavy reliance on bourbon barrel notes ends up making the underlying stout seem weak and watery.

jondeelee, Apr 28, 2013
Photo of Smurf2055
3.75/5  rDev -5.5%

Smurf2055, Jul 21, 2013
Photo of richbrew
4/5  rDev +0.8%

richbrew, Nov 15, 2011
Photo of vissai
4.35/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

2011 vintage Poured out of a 22oz bomber into a tulip glass.
Appearance is oil slick black with little to no head. looks less viscous then I had expected
Smell is Bourbon all the way. probably the most bourbon i have ever smelled in a BA beer. Hints of chocolate present as well
Taste follows the nost with straight of bourbon and chocolate wafer dry chocolate after taste. a little salty even in the aftertaste like chocolate covered pretzels. Very nice
Mouthfeel follows the appearance and is a little soupy and not as thick and rich as BCBS. The smell prepares you for a very chewy brew but the mouthfeel isnt so.
Drinkability is amazing. drinks like a 6-7 abv. the light mouthfeel definitely helps the case here. A very enjoyable brew to say the least. I loved it

vissai, Mar 08, 2011
Black Gold Imperial Stout - Bourbon Barrel Aged (Brewmaster Reserve) from Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub
89 out of 100 based on 461 ratings.