Top Sail Bourbon Barrel Aged Porter (Brewmaster Reserve 2010) - Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub

Not Rated.
Top Sail Bourbon Barrel Aged Porter (Brewmaster Reserve 2010)Top Sail Bourbon Barrel Aged Porter (Brewmaster Reserve 2010)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
84
good

66 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 66
Hads: 88
rAvg: 3.73
pDev: 12.06%
Wants: 7
Gots: 19 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  9.85% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: beertunes on 02-21-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

After its initial release in February 2009, Top Sail was aged for about 10 months in Bourbon casks from Kentucky.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 66 | Hads: 88
Photo of Vaylaus
4.57/5  rDev +22.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Not quite opaque like an imperial porter, but dark, with a tan foamy head

S: Bourbon, with an unusual fruity smell not normally associated with a barrel aged beer

T: Hints of bourbon, with the aforementioned figs from the label on the bottle, a light chocolate sweetness. Different, but quite pleasant

M: Lighter than expected, coming across the tongue like a normal porter. Enjoyable.

D: Smooth as can be, although after an hour or so, the alcohol moves from the background to the foreground. But otherwise dangerously drinkable.

An underrated beer IMHO. A very good price for what you get. Recommended. (612 characters)

Photo of Bighuge
4.5/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark, dark, chocolate brown. Light brown head that leaves sporadic blotches of cylindrical lace. Aroma is quite distinctive. Lots of good wafts of chocolate, bourbon, caramel and roasted malts. On the palate, it's a lot more of the same. Nice roasted malt base with a little caramel character. Bourbon traits are nice as are the chocolate characteristics. Mouthfeel is velvety. Alcohol is noticeable, but integrated nicely. This is well done. (442 characters)

Photo of dwilson01
4.48/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into my arrogant bastard pint glass, this brew is midnight black in color, it's more dark and dense looking than the black writing on my glass. The head was small and dissipated quickly, a dark chocolate mocha color.

In the smell I pick up an initial alcohol and wood scents combined for a nice burn to the nostrils. Small amount of coffee, and almost a nutty smell (freshly crushed walnuts).

The flavor profile of this brew is fricken extensive, the aging process definitely imparted some amazing qualities to it. The initial part is a smooth thick expresso and dark milk chocolate. The estery oak flavor comes out in full force and gives you an awesome bite which I love. The woodiness and the alcohol give way in the very end to a molasses and black cherry flavor which leaves you with a great aftertaste. They say figs on the bottle which I think is what I'm picking up in the end but to be honest I don't know what figs taste like so from my experiences it imparts that darker fruity cherry/currant flavor.

The mouthfeel is awesome, it's thick and molassesy, a dense malty cherry alcohol bomb of a beer. So smooth and yet so aggressive from the alcohol at the same time it makes the drinkability quite a dilemma to rate. I love it for sure but there is no way you could chug this beer, small sips, savor it while it lasts (1,352 characters)

Photo of GabrielM
4.35/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter.

A - pitch black with a dark toffee-colored head, which looks very inviting.

S - immediate bourbon aroma, which is exciting to me, with some faint traces of vanilla and espresso.

T - as the smell indicated, strong bourbon is the first to hit the pallet. Then a blast of strong coffee, followed by some vanilla, a touch of chocolate, some oak and walnuts on the back.

M - carbonation is nice and the beer is delicious, but a bit thinner than expected.

D - as stated above, the bourbon is strong and dominant, which can be good to some but not so good to others. I enjoy it, along with the warmth provided by it and the ABV. However, I probably won't crack another for a year or so, but when that time comes, I'm sure this is going to be one hell of a beer! (785 characters)

Photo of msmezher
4.32/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had Top Sail's Bourbon Barrel Aged Porter the other afternoon and was pretty impressed. I'm a sucker for barrel aged beers, I'm a big fan of whiskey and scotch and love a good oaky finish.
This aged porter pours black with dark reddish hues around the edges when held to light. Fairly carbonated for a strong aged beer, and a finger or so of head appeared as I poured.
In terms of flavor this beer presents strong roasted malts and coffee tastes. Very full flavored, without feeling too heavy and the 22oz bottle went down easily, and I wouldn't have noticed how alcoholic the beer was but for reading the label.

This is one to try and save, a very solid choice. (663 characters)

Photo of Wasatch
4.3/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz. Bomber
Gold Foil/Capped
Imperial Porter 9.85% ABV

I must be having a totally complete different brew than the other's that have reviewed it.

Poured into a chalice a nice black color, nice carbonation, nice quick creamy tan head, with some nice oil slicks and sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, with a good dose of chocolate/toffee, very nice touch of bourbon. The taste is sweet, malty, lots of dark stuff, and loving the bourbon note, vanilla. Medium body. Very drinkable, this one is very nice, recommended and I would definitely drink more of it. (568 characters)

Photo of rye726
4.3/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours near black with a silky tan head. Nose has roasty malts, chocolate, vanilla, bourbon, oak, figs, dates, floral hops and coffee. Taste has bitter hops and molasses followed by espresso, cocoa, whickey, wood and vanilla. Medium bosy is nicely carbonated. Tasty stuff, should age well. (288 characters)

Photo of grittybrews
4.3/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a syrupy black into a tulip with a finger of light mocha head.

Strong aroma of oaky bourbon and vanilla along with a hint of sweet cherry, cocoa, and alcohol. Moderately high carbonation helps balance the syrupy consistency and provides a lively if somewhat thin mouthfeel.

Strong rush of bourbon flavor up front, balanced with dry cocoa, a bit of creamy caramel sweetness, and slightly bitter roasted malts. Nice oaky finish with a bit of the dark fruit hinted at in the initial aroma.

Bold, complex, and extremely tasty -- I love the flavors imparted by the bourbon barrel aging. Well done, Full Sail! (613 characters)

Photo of ZAP
4.27/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-Deep brown bordering on black with reddish hues..

S-Very boozy...alcohol laden aroma...dark chocolate bourbon balls...malt reminds of molasses....hints of oak, vanilla, black cherries, figs, and raisins..

T-Smoother than the aroma leads you on....more of a milk chocolate Easter Bunny base with some very enjoyable oak, vanilla and nougat. Also lighter notes of molasses, and bourbon...

M-Mildly disappointing...medium bodied (I expected more)very flat which gives it an even thinner impression.. Smooth though with just a little boozy bite on the finish which is much appreciated.

D-Very nice, enjoyable beer that really grew on me as I sipped it. Really a nice flavor. Which it had a little more heft to the body but that's about hte only complaint. (757 characters)

Photo of Slatetank
4.25/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to foofaa for sharing this at the epic stout tasting - poured chilled in a tulip.

A big brown shade of ale with an opaque clarity, lace clings well and the bead is fine. The smell has a lot of dried fruit and light bourbon w/ subtle notes of oak and dark malt. The feel is strong and moderately bitter w/ a mildly astringent woodiness on the palate.

The flavor has a nice cohesion of bourbon barrel and a slight malt toastiness with slight berry and gentle raisin from the yeast. The blend of the wood and malt is terrific and the wood actually stands out slightly over the base beer in this. A good Imperial Porter and the barrel aging adds to the overall beer, the strength is not too over the top for the style and I found this to be very drinkable. (763 characters)

Photo of TMoney2591
4.23/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Devil's Backbone willibecher.

Big thanks to hopsbreath and the Support Your Team! BIF for this bottle!

Man, my man VDubb can really pick some tasty beers from my deep fridge. This selection pours a straight jet black topped by a finger of dark-ish tan foam. As the Three Degrees' "When Will I See You Again" starts up, I sniff: bourbon, oak, caramel, roasted malts, chocolate, and a hint of Coca-Cola. Definitely smells like a bourbon-aged impy porter. I'd say the taste is identical were it not for the addition of cinnamon. The bourbon melds nicely with the dark elements: not too strong, but decidedly there. "Johnny B. Goode" has flared. The body is a heavy medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a slightly grainy feel. Overall, a very tasty brew, one that I wish was more available 'round these parts. Thanks again, Jason! (849 characters)

Photo of srandycarter
4.22/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - BB version. Nice almost black body, tan thin head, leaves fast. Some but not much lace.

S - A little smoke, bourbon, wood, coffee.

T - Nice, bright flavors, booze, wood, coffee.

M - Very balanced. Good carb and coating. Like it.

D - Hard on the ABV but very drinkable for the style. (290 characters)

Photo of Mdog
4.22/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Black, good head.

Smell: Big oaky bourbon aroma, boozy.

Taste: Dark chocolate, then plenty of vanilla and oak from the bourbon barrel.

Mouthfeel: Lighter than expected.

Drinkability: The somewhat light body and good taste along with Full Sail's low price ($4.99 for this bomber) is a good combination.

This barrel-aged beer is a tasty one and probably the lowest-priced barrel-aged beer I've seen. It gives all the bourbon flavor you would expect, with a good dark chocolate base from the porter. Recommended! (526 characters)

Photo of Docer
4.2/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cracked into a bomber... poured into a nice short-pint glass.

- Looks like a nice solid imperial porter. We all know what that looks like right? Dark, rich, can't see through brown and black... nice quick fizzling mocha head, down to a little ring and tad bit of lace making sticky rings.

- Nice huge vanilla nose, oak, and strengthy bourbon right up front.. (I hope not as forward as the Black Gold). Sweet chocolate and alcohol. Malt and oats... highly bitter hop perhaps..

- Wonderfully smooth chocolate velvet malts... just the right touch of sweetness... oats, sweet grains.... huge vanilla oak... fantastic hops... bitter, dry, and just right for the style in my opinion. What a good drinking imperial porter without being too over-the-top like last years Black Gold.

- Little dry and chalky... watering, and medium bodied... overall not bad for a strengthy imperial porter.

- Overall I am very impressed with this, and plan to buy a few more to sit on for awhile... I bet with 4 years or more on these bottles, they would turn out absolutely amazing. (1,062 characters)

Photo of sqquuee
4.18/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Chilled mine to 55 degrees.

Cracked the top and even before i poured it the bourbon and toffee where apparent.

Appearance- Color is a great deep dark black with ruby highlights around the edges of the glass. Almost completely opaque. Not much foam on this. Pours a sort of cream colored / slightly tan color.

Aroma- Toffee, vanilla/oak, malt, bourbon. Fantastic!

Taste- At just shy of 10% alc the boozy warmth is apparent. But not over done. Firm malt flavor on the front of the tasting. Roasted notes followed by vanilla and then the bourbon lets you know its there on the finish. I can only think what the flavors will do in 6months with age.

Mouthfeel- Full, low carbonation. But by no means flat. Silky.

Over all a very rich beer. Fantastic winter warmer.
I can only have a 22oz bomber at a go. Full sail has done a great job with this beer. (851 characters)

Photo of Beerzebub
4.16/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Cellared for about 4 years at 55 degrees F.

Dark dark brown. A bit of tan froth.

Aroma is somewhat muted, but quite nice - dark chocolate, oily dark roast coffee beans, bourbon with a good charred/soot aspect, and a bit of earthy hops. Lacking in intensity, but deep, cohesive, and fairly complex.

Tastes like dark fruit - along the lines of dried cherry, almost red winelike - along with bourbon/char, dark chocolate, and coffee. Cohesive, balanced, and quite tasty. Long tasty finish.

Smooth, velvety texture.

This has aged surprisingly well; far better than the 2008 version I opened alongside it. Probably a good time to drink this up. (644 characters)

Photo of BradLikesBrew
4.15/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bourbon first, then cocoa powder, medjool dates, french roast coffee, oak, and a creamy vanilla finish. 12 months in Bourbon barrels has really rounded the edges. When you smell it and even as you begin to take your first sip, this beer seems like a beefcake. But on the finish, it just fades away. None of the aggressive, rich, astringency you might expect. Just smooth, soft, and creamy. (389 characters)

Photo of jera1350
4.15/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Solid brownish black in color with a mocha brown colored head that is creamy but small. A little lacing.

Tons of milk chocolate in the nose with a a solid oaky bourbon presence as well. Good dose of sweetness.

Big time flavors going on. Lots of chocolate, espresso and bourbon with a big hit of vanilla. Deep roasted malts, charred oak and burnt caramel round out the flavor profile. Not short on taste with a strong complexity.

The body is just too thin and a touch watery. Undercarbonated as well, but it's not enough to take away much from the overall beer.

Drinks as well as a nearly 10% beer can. This is a really nice barrel aged porter. Tons of flavor, especially the bourbon. Well done and recommended. (714 characters)

Photo of Scotchboy
4.1/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap @ Bittercreek Alehouse, Boise ID. Served in a snifter.

A: Pours an opaque deep dark brown, with a brownish-tan head, decent lacing and alcohol feet.

S: Lots of smooth vanilla and balanced bourbon notes, dark malts, chocolate, light oaky notes, toasted coconut and wood. Pretty nice, I think some age has smoothed this one out.

T: Taste follows the nose, with a light but present alcohol burn, lots bourbon flavors, touch of burnt caramel mixed with the vanilla and oak notes, toasted coconut, lots of chocolate as well. Finishes with a flash of a bitter burnt flavor.

MF: Medium to full bodied, creamy, spot on bitterness and a touch of dryness, light carbonation.

O: Pretty nice, I like this a bit better than Black Gold. Pretty drinkable, good array of flavors, and a present but not overwhelming bourbon presence. I did I side-by-side with the 2012 offering and they are very similar. (899 characters)

Photo of froghop
4.08/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a jet black with a very thin brown head, and some lacing.

smell is of cocoa, bourbon, malt, and a little licorice.

taste is smooth, definite bourbon cocoa, malt, some licorice, and a little coffee, ends somewhat bitter.

overall a great porter. (252 characters)

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.07/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2010 vintage two year old cellared bottle poured into an Ommegang flute. Pours black with only a hint of reddish brown at the edges. Thin medium tan head dissipates to a ring around the glass and lacing. Aroma is dominated by bourbon with light hints of oak and dark malt. Flavor is also dominated by bourbon. Moderate dark and roasted malt, oak, dark fruit. Rather dry finish with a hint of hops. Medium bodied; perhaps a bit light for an imperial porter. The astringency noted in the fresh bottle has attenuated. This porter is now much more integrated and mellow, however the flavors are also attenuated. The flavor is good, but somewhat underwhelming. Definitely redeemed by the bourbon barrel aging, Better than a standard porter, but not quite up to imperial porter flavor density. I cellared a few of these and they will probably be pleasant to drink, but I do not see this improving much with age. A decent, but somewhat lightly flavored imperial porter. (962 characters)

Photo of DavidST
4.03/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a tulip glass, unknown freshness. This pours a pitch black color with a large but short lived tan head. The smells are of bourbon, oak and alcohol, a little overpowering. The feel is medium to a little thicker. The taste is okay, it might need a little age, anyways I get a full coat of dark roasted malts, a mouthfull of bourbon, the alcohol is very present. Not bad though, and I do love these bourbon barrel aged beers. (453 characters)

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

On tap at the FW Invitational earlier this month. Nice gem, bringing a 2010 keg to the party. Poured black, good head, especially for being a bourbon barrel beer. Aroma was pretty deep, oak, bourbon, dark fruit fig, cognizant deep burnt and roasted malt.

Taste, wow, pretty smooth, not massive, but not a delicate beer either, puts itself firmly in the middle of substantial and warming. Good vanilla accompaniment. Sweet at times without going overboard (although that can be damn fine sometimes). Good thickness and consistency, neither sludgy nor thin, dare I say this is balanced, and not in the way people say their ipa is (i.e. to make up for the best part not being there or severely unrepresented). Chocolate well represented.

Drank this towards the end of the day at the festival, it was easy to taste, easy to drink, but not simplistic, and I knew with the amount of palate fatigue going on, this was pretty substantial. Would recommend. (951 characters)

Photo of Thorpe429
4/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a very dark brown color with a light mocha head. The nose brings forth a good dose of bourbon along with some light oak, roasted malt, and hints of coffee. The taste is dominated by the bourbon, but it's pretty smooth overall. Good semi-hot mouthfeel with a nice body. Drinks very well; glad they put this out. (338 characters)

Photo of zeff80
3.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out an opaque, jet-black color with a small, khaki-colored head of foam. It was short-lived and left little lacing.

S - Strong vanilla aroma. Bourbon and oak is present but not as strong as the vanilla.

T - This is a vanilla-forward bourbon barrel aged beer. Some chocolate, roasted malt and some mild oak flavors.

M - It was a little light bodied for the stye, but still smooth and crisp.

D - This is a nice bourbon barrel aged brew. Again, it was vanilla dominant. (481 characters)

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Top Sail Bourbon Barrel Aged Porter (Brewmaster Reserve 2010) from Full Sail Brewery & Tasting Room & Pub
84 out of 100 based on 66 ratings.