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Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Cherry Stout - Central Waters Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Cherry StoutBrewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Cherry Stout

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

538 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 538
Reviews: 216
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 12.34%
Wants: 133
Gots: 141 | FT: 17
Brewed by:
Central Waters Brewing Co. visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Stout |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: dirtylou on 03-22-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 538 | Reviews: 216 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Duff27
3.15/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Fizzy half inch light mocha head on a dark brown/black body. Head doesn't stick around long.

S- Whiffs of tart cherries and some chocolate.

T- Equal parts bourbon and cherry, maybe more bourbon. Cherry just seems muddled. 10%abv is well hidden so I'll give it that.

M- Fizzy carbonation/somewhat thin mouthfeel for a stout it seems.

D/O- It's weird to be let down by a Central Waters BA beer, with Fourteen Fourteen, BB Stout, BB Barleywine all being great in my opinion. This one is worth a try but not going out of your way for.

Duff27, May 16, 2012
Photo of atone315
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%

atone315, May 15, 2012
Photo of scott2269
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%

scott2269, May 15, 2012
Photo of M1A2
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%

M1A2, May 14, 2012
Photo of KimbarkBrewCrew
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%

KimbarkBrewCrew, May 11, 2012
Photo of herman77
3.45/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

2012 vintage

A: Dark dark brown with a small light tan head.

S: Tart cherries right away with chocolate, bourbon, vanilla. Kind of smells like an odd combination, but it works.

T: You defiantly get the tart cherries, but everything else is kind of muddled together and gets lost. You can taste bourbon, vanilla, chocolate, roasted malt and coffee, but I think it gets lost in the tartness of the cherries and the bourbon. No bad or off flavors at all though, just everything is a confusing mess of flavors.

M: Medium light body. Average carbonation. Thin for a imperial stout.

O: Pretty decent drinkability. ABV is hidden somewhat well, no real burn from the alcohol. I like the idea of this beer, but it just doesn't deliver like I wished it would. It's not bad, but I wish the flavors didn't mix together the way they did.

herman77, May 06, 2012
Photo of bertram
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

bertram, May 06, 2012
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark brown and black appearance, less in the way of head than the regular bourbon barrel stout had, so less lace, retention as well. Aroma, nice bitter cherries, its in there, milder bourbon aromas in the regular bourbon version are, well, even more mild here now that it is competing with the ample amount of cherries. Chocolate, wood round out the aroma department, vanilla, conspicuously missing, but thankfully comes back around in the mouthfeel.

Taste, wow, the bitter cherry really stands at the forefront here. The stout component is actually still pretty smooth, not a big bitterness from heavy roasting or whatnot, it seems solely derived from the cherry aspect. Some sweetness, not diabetic coma inducing by any means. The mouthfeel is a little thinner than what the imperial stout fanboys tend to prefer, and also probably contributes to the metallic bitter aspect that one can get from the beer.

You can't beat the price on such a barrel aged beer though. That counts.

Beerandraiderfan, May 01, 2012
Photo of MarkFy
4/5  rDev +5%

MarkFy, May 01, 2012
Photo of Scotchboy
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, 2012 vintage from a stellar trading partner (thanks man) poured into a Jackie O's tulip.

A: Pours a nearly opaque dark brown with light showing through on the edges of the glass. The head was initially a good two fingers of tightly bubbled creamy light tan foam, but it fades relatively quickly; between the abv, bourbon barrels and cherries I would expect that.

S: Real nice; bourbon, caramel, oak are all prominent on the nose...faint bitterness from a roasted component, hints of vanilla and faint, faint cherry...really no alcohol to speak of except for a very slight bourbon booziness.

T: Cherry comes through more here as the beer warms, mixing with the bourbon, notes of caramel and vanilla...pleasant alcohol notes, no real burn though...definite sweetness, with a touch of tart cherry...hints of charred oak, burnt caramel, faint coffee, chocolate, and licorice.

MF: Fairly viscous medium mouthfeel, creamy, light carbonation, dry body.

O: I liked this one a lot, enjoyable and unique..definitely has Central Waters signature BA profile, with a unique cherry component that blends well and isn't off-putting.

Thanks Aaron!

Scotchboy, May 01, 2012
Photo of jegross2
3.63/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewing the 2012 vintage of the Central Waters Bourbon Barrel Cherry Stout from Central Waters Brewing Company. I have never met a "cherry stout" I liked, but friends assure me that if I will ever like one, it will be this one. Thank you Kendra for handing this one over as an extra. Thank you even more for not giving me the one with the screwed up label.
Score: 85

2012 vintage bottle with the February month ticked on the side of the label. Served in a Great Lakes snifter and enjoyed on 04/24/12.

Appearance: Pour a deep black color with a thick layer of caramel color at the top when held up to light. Less than half a finger of creamy khaki colored head at pour settles into a ring around the glass. Decent lacing with decent, but inconsistent, lacing. 4/5

Smell: Primarily fudge, but there's a light amount of coffee, some dark chocolate and a light amount of cherry in the aroma too. Hint of vanilla. A real nice blend and balance of stout aromatics with a light cherry twist here. 4/5

Taste: There's some complexity here, but those complexities do not blend well together. There's a little tart cherry sweetness, bready malt and a little caramel upfront. Then creamy chocolate and a modest amount of vanilla on the midpalate. The finish is slightly oaky chocolate with residual sweetness from the cherry. Honestly, that cherry is almost like a backbone in the beer and it's too contrasting without any real sense of belonging with the rest of the flavors. There's honestly no bourbon flavor here whatsoever. Growing cherry flavor as the beer warms/layers -- especially on the midpalate and in the linger. The residual aftertaste is a real nice chocolate-covered cherry flavor that you wish the rest of the beer tasted like. No real booziness to the beer at all. 3.5/5

Mouthfeel: Medium-light bodied, medium-plus carbonation. Honestly a little too much carbonation here. Or maybe I'm mistaking the prickly tartness from the cherry for carbonation. Either way, the mouthfeel is too thin and bubbly on the palate for an imperial stout. Has a slightly syrupy mouthfeel. 3.5/5

Overall: This beer certainly has potential, and it has the flavor components needed to be pretty good, but as crafted is a bit of a sloppy mess. The flavor components are too "individualized" and blend about as well as oil and water on the palate.

Recommendation: Give this one a try if you get a chance, but do not go out of your way to find it.

Pairings: Chocolate cake.

Cost: $3.49 for a single bottle or $11.99 for a four pack.

jegross2, May 01, 2012
Photo of dsuedbeck
4.5/5  rDev +18.1%

dsuedbeck, Apr 28, 2012
Photo of afausser
4.05/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I've had this one cellared for about 2 on top of the age it came with. About to move cross country so clearing a lot of great stuff out of the cellar.

Appearance: Pours an opaque dark chocolate color, impossible to see light through but not as pitch black as a lot of dark beers can be. Has about a finger of mocha head that quickly recedes into a ring of uneven foamy off-white bubbles around the edge of the glass. Carbonation streams feed slowly into the remaining head here and there, and there's a pretty pattern across the top of the glass.

Smell: Smells great. reminds me a lot of the oak aged version without cherry. Heavy vanilla notes blend with nice oaky notes. Smells nice and cool. As it sits and warms for a bit, and when agitated, there are some sour but not biting cherry notes that are apparent. As I remember, the non-cherry version had some nice cherry notes as well. There are some more traditional stout notes in the background, particularly dark chocolate sweet notes.

Taste: The cherry notes are way stronger in the taste, to the point where it tastes more like a mix of a sour and a fruit beer than a stout. I like sours and it's delicious, but I don't think I can rate this with full marks since I'm doing this to style. Slight bitter notes in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Decent. A little foamy in the finish but otherwise pretty good.

Drinkability: Definitely more of a sipper than the other stouts due to the sour cherry notes. Still have yet to have a Central Waters brew that's disappointed--and super excited to be driving through WI in a month so I can get some more great beer!

afausser, Apr 26, 2012
Photo of DersOne
3/5  rDev -21.3%

DersOne, Apr 26, 2012
Photo of kjkinsey
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

kjkinsey, Apr 26, 2012
Photo of Texasfan549
4.25/5  rDev +11.5%

Texasfan549, Apr 26, 2012
Photo of Deivos
5/5  rDev +31.2%

Deivos, Apr 24, 2012
Photo of coz
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

coz, Apr 23, 2012
Photo of Hopstout
3/5  rDev -21.3%

Hopstout, Apr 22, 2012
Photo of doucmehu
3.5/5  rDev -8.1%

doucmehu, Apr 21, 2012
Photo of justintcoons
3.35/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter.

A: Pours a translucent black with red highlights and some aggressive carbonation. A good 3 fingers of head rapidly dissipates.

N: Dark chocolate, sweet bourbon, vanilla, fudge and a light maraschino cherry essence. Nice!

T: Right upfront is some slightly tart maraschino cherry and a hint of metal. Mid-palate brings in some subtle roasty notes suggesting chocolate, coffee and overripe plum. There's a subtle hint of bourbon. Finishes with cherry, earthy oak, candy sugar and faint vanilla.

M: Medium bodied, smooth and somewhat silky.

O: The cherry flavor really takes over. The bourbon is not that noticeable in the flavor profile. The Imperial Stout characteristics are minimal and the body is too thin. Where this beer wins is that there is no alcohol presence and it is rather tasty and easy drinking. Tastes more like a Belgian Dark Strong Ale with cherries added though.

justintcoons, Apr 21, 2012
Photo of jjanega08
3.6/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2012 Bottled on notch between Feb and march

A= Pours a black color but more of a deep brown based on the look coming out of the bottle. The head rises to a finger high and holds some pretty decent retention with some solid lacing and steady retention.

S= Smells like bourbon and cherries. I've found that imperial stouts and central waters don't really get along. They always seem very weak and watery. The main character in their barrel aged series is the barrel and added ingredients. This is no exception. The nose is deep vanilla and cherries with great wood character. The stout is weak and falls behind the additions. The cherries add a sort of tart smell to it that makes my taste buds water.

T= The taste is no exception for the rule. Bourbon and cherries up front with something sort of reminiscent of a stout falling behind. The wood and vanilla take the for front and the slightly tart cherries follow quickly behind. There is a slight roast from the stout but not much. The barrel is excellent and the cherries are a great addition so I don't really know how to do this. The additions are great but the stout base is very clearly weak.

M= Way to weak for an imperial stout. Light and effervescent.

O= This is a quality beer for sure. A quality imperial stout? No not at all. A quality barrel aged beer? yes for sure among the best. A quality beer with cherries added? Oh yeah the cherries are awesome. So how do you call this? Is it a great beer? I think so. Is it something that fits to the imperial stout style? No it's a horrible imperial stout. Among the worst I've had. But as a beer itself It's awesome. Really hard to rate. I'm gonna rate it to style but boost the overall score because it's a good beer. A very good beer.

jjanega08, Apr 20, 2012
Photo of oline73
3.2/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured from the bottle into a Chimay goblet.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown color with some light coming through it. There is a finger of light tan head that fades to a layer on top of the pour.

Smell: Peppery bourbon and oak hit your nose up front. There is some smooth roast and a mild sweetness as well. Only getting a very faint cherry note.

Taste: You can pick up the cherries here, but they still don't dominate. This is a good use of cherries in a beer. The peppery oak and bourbon show up here as well. I never would have guessed the abv is as high as it is listed.

Mouthfeel: The body is really thin given the style. Smooth, fluffy carbonation and a dry finish.

Overall: I can't say that I loved this beer. The bourbon and cherries were nice, but it just didn't come together for me.

oline73, Apr 20, 2012
Photo of yourefragile
3.55/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle.

Pours a dark, cola brown with a thin light tan head. Little lace or retention. Nose is cherry syrup and oak, with some light roast malt. Dry, mildly tart cherries dominate the flavor with a nearly equally strong vanilla and bourbon oak presence. Little malt flavor in the body as the treatment dominates the base beer. Medium thick, low carbonation and a slightly watery finish. Alcohol is well hidden but this is a little too rich to drink much of a bottle. Still prefer this to Peruvian Morning or the Barrel Aged Stout.

yourefragile, Apr 19, 2012
Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Cherry Stout from Central Waters Brewing Co.
86 out of 100 based on 538 ratings.