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Barrel-Aged Gonzo Imperial Porter - Flying Dog Brewery

Barrel-Aged Gonzo Imperial PorterBarrel-Aged Gonzo Imperial Porter

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
93
outstanding

253 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 253
Reviews: 49
rAvg: 4.17
pDev: 10.07%


Brewed by:
Flying Dog Brewery visit their website
Maryland, United States

Style | ABV
American Porter |  9.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Aged and seasoned for three months in whiskey barrels.

Duplicate of this beer
 http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/68/36342 

(Beer added by: endincolorado on 11-18-2011)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 253 | Reviews: 49 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of johnmichaelsen
johnmichaelsen

Oregon

4.2/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On cask at Max's today during their rare beerfest. This is the barrel aged version, but with vanilla nibs and chipolte.

The beer pours blackish brown color with fairly good head retention and decent lacing. The nose is just great on this stuff, as I pick up considerable dark chocolate, vanilla, nestle's quick and light coffee. The flavor profile is even better, as I pick up some heat from the chili's, a touch of bourbon, along with everything I got in the nose. The beer is fairly sweet, but the bourbon tones that down nicely in this fine beer. Mouthfeel is medium bodied to full, with a soft, almost creamy mouthfeel. Alcohol is noticeable, but is not over the top or overdone.

Just an all around well made, well crafted beer from Flying Dog. Impressive stuff.

Serving type: cask

04-27-2012 19:21:41 | More by johnmichaelsen
Photo of jeonseh
jeonseh

Indiana

3.68/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a bottle

A - Very dark brown, almost black. Poured with no head and only had a small edge of foam on the edges. Much darker than the original Gonzo

S - Dark chocolate, vanilla sweetness and a strong whisky presence as well. Get hints of oak from the barrel and hints of plum as well.. Actually a bit surprised by how much barrel you get in the nose give its only aged a few months

T - Chocolate, hints of brandied dark fruits and a hint of oak. Near the end of the beer, there are hints of vanilla and bitter coffee and hops. You do get a slight kick from the alcohol as well.

MF - Medium body with a light syrupiness to it. Has a decent amount of carbonation as well. Leaves a slight oak tingle on the tongue that lingers in the aftertaste

O - Good BA porter from Flying Dog. The barrel adds a new layer of complexity to the normal Gonzo. Worth trying if you find one.

Serving type: bottle

04-15-2012 05:31:44 | More by jeonseh
Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4DAloveofSTOUT

Illinois

3.93/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into tulip glass.

Appearance: really dark black porter. head is light to medium brown poring out to 1 full finger of head that dies down to a ring around the top of the beer. good looking dark beer!

Smell: strong whiskey and oak notes that overpower all else. The nose is all business, nuff said.

Taste: upfront some malty sweetness represented by a chocolate bar and a mild roasty coffee. U get a little bit of vanilla mixed with black licorice and oak. Then the whiskey takes over and dominates this beer from midtaste to the aftertaste. Mild boozey kick that works good with the flavors that are present.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied beer with low to carbonation. Appropriate for the beer style, fairly close to where it should be. Oily and fairly viscous for a baltic porter. Still feels a bit thin, but I am used to drinking barrel aged stouts and this is a porter. So that is to be expected.

Overall: really nice barrel aged porter. Had the non-barrel aged version of Gonzo many times before and I prefer the whiskey barrel treatment for this beer... it really does wonders for this porter. I would have to say that this beer is the best offering I have ever drank from flying dog brewery.

Serving type: bottle

04-13-2012 01:55:22 | More by 4DAloveofSTOUT
Photo of cosmicevan
cosmicevan

New York

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

thanks to bbarak for sending this 12oz'er my way. enjoyed from a duck rabbit snifter.

a - brew poured a deep dark ominous black with a finger plus of tan head that fizzled away in a matter of minutes leaving a ring on the surface of the brew.

s - whiskey barrel with nutty chocolate. the wood is definitely present and brings a good amount of peat to the nose. more whiskey than i remember from the wild dog version.

t - lots of char and chocolate with strong woody peat characteristics. more stout than porter.

m - a bit thin for such a big beer, but overall medium bodied. thicker than a typical porter.

o - overall, a nice beer. it is pretty enjoyable. wish i had a regular gonzo to compare it to. memory says that it is similar to the wild dog, but the barrel seems more present than the larger format wild dog series. the wood is fairly present. i am a big fan of whiskey barrels as opposed to bourbon barrels, but certainly doesn't feel like the most top shelf whiskey. none-the-less, enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2012 01:02:46 | More by cosmicevan
Photo of chanokokoro
chanokokoro

Illinois

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

12 oz. bottle poured into a snifter

Pours an opaque black with a beige one and a half finger head with dissipates into a thin foam ring bordering the inside of the glass. A aroma of chocolate, oak, roasted malt, and a bit of whiskey booziness rises from the glass. Initially chocolate and a bit of dark fruit, transtions into slight sweet roasted malt which eventually finishes with oak and whiskey and a bit of alcohol heat. Very pleasant mouthfeel. Perfect level of carbonation with a heavier medium body. Very smooth from start to finish. A very solid barrel-aged porter and an overall tasty brew. Recommended and worth revisiting.

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2012 04:15:59 | More by chanokokoro
Photo of Rutager
Rutager

British Columbia (Canada)

4.1/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Yeahnatenelson for this one. Vintage 11AA

Appearance. Pours black with a thin, espresso foam head.

Smell. Chocolate and roasty malts with a little oaky vanilla and booze. Just a slight sourness too.

Taste. Sweet bourbon, some roasty malts, a bit of semi-sweet chocolate and vanilla.

Mouthfeel. Medium-full body with medium-low carboantion.

Overall. Drinks pretty easy considering abv and tastes good.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2012 00:36:51 | More by Rutager
Photo of DustinSmall
DustinSmall

Maryland

4.05/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Flying Dog brewery, also had the cask version with cherry, but this review is from the growler of it i picked up

A- A dark reddish brown on the curve, the beer over all is a dark dark mahogany almost black, little carbonation, half finger head, nice alcohol legs on this

S- Bourbon right up front, sweet malts, caramel, dark fruits coming through, and im getting some wood on this

T- A hit of bourbon up front, then sweet malts and a huge woody flavor come out, the after taste is slightly bitter and coffee like

M- This thing is great heavy/medium coats the mouth nicely

O- wonderful wonderful

Serving type: growler

03-03-2012 23:48:54 | More by DustinSmall
Photo of CuriousMonk
CuriousMonk

Virginia

4.23/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was a fan of their regular porter and definitely had to try their barrel-aged version. This brew was aged and seasoned for three months in wood barrels from the brewery’s neighbors at Stranahan’s Colorado Whiskey. Poured from bomber into a tulip glass. Pours brown with a foamy, tan head. Bit of dark malts in the nose, some mild roast, some toasty caramel. Big sweet bourbon flavor, roasted malts, and dark sugars. Medium to full bodied with fine carbonation. Mild warmth in the finish, some light roast, wood, dark sugar, and some dark fruits as well. Very nice imperial porter!

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2012 21:01:17 | More by CuriousMonk
Photo of DapperGrowler
DapperGrowler

District of Columbia

4.22/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I tried this beer on tap at Meridian Pint in Washington DC. THis beer was served in a pint glass.

A: A black beer with a small head and not that much lacing around the glass.

S: When I brought the glass to my nose i was pleasantly happy to smell vanilla, a general sweetness and a slight smell of alcohol.

T: I though that this beer was quite complex with a lot of various flavors. On the front of the pallet I detected a sweet malt taste while on the back was a feeling of alcohol along with a vanilla aftertaste.

M: this was a full bodied beer and very smooth to drink.

O: this was a good barrel aged porter. It is not the best, but i really enjoyed it.

Serving type: on-tap

02-11-2012 04:11:08 | More by DapperGrowler
Photo of bertram
bertram

Illinois

3.65/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a thick, viscous black with a small amount of tan head.

smell is sweet, and malty, followed by chocolate, raisin & bourbon.

the taste follows the smell - chocolate, malt and bourbon, with a hint of raisin and fruit.

the mouthfeel is smooth, creamy and thick.

overall a nice enough beer - based on a very good porter IMO - and a style I'd like to see done more often.

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2012 03:00:18 | More by bertram
Photo of jmarsh123
jmarsh123

Indiana

3.73/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with a minimal mocha head fading almost immediately. Some lacing down the glass.

Just a touch of the roasted malt and quite a bit of the chocolate remains from the base beer aroma. The booze is subtle, but the barrel characteristics dominates. Loads of sweet vanilla and some oak are present.

Chocolate up front in the flavor. Some vanilla (though not as much as the nose), oak and leather come into play and it finishes with a roasted malt taste backed with a subtle hint of booze. Flavors are integrated well.

Smooth and creamy mouthfeel with medium carbonation levels. Would prefer a touch less carbonation.

Good solid beer, but nothing spectacular and I think I prefer the base beer. The booze is subtle on it, but it still gets a bit too sweet at times.

Serving type: bottle

02-10-2012 20:04:43 | More by jmarsh123
Photo of russwbeck
russwbeck

Virginia

4.18/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Black pour with a huge brown head. Very large bubbles build up and create a beautiful looking beer. Retention is great, and a lot of lacing sticks to the sides of my Deschutes Tulip.

S: Whiskey forward aroma for sure. Chocolate and roast remain from the base Gonzo Imperial Porter. I'm not surprised some of the roast remains from Gonzo, and thankfully it plays well with the whiskey.

T: Stranahans Whiskey is simply delicious. Not intrusive, this whiskey adds a nice character to the beer. Oak, vanilla, and whiskey come together with chocolate and roast to create a nicely balanced, albeit whiskey focused, taste. You start off with some whiskey and chocolate, graduate to stronger whiskey and perhaps a hint of booze, and finish with a big roast and lingering whiskey.

MF: My only wish is that the base beer of Gonzo imparted more body to this beer. It seems a bit thin. Low carbonation as I would expect, I just wanted this to be a bit more rich. Insanely drinkable.

O: This was $20 for a 750ml bottle, which I say was worth it once, but not again. The bottle shop I picked it up from only got 6 bottles and I was lucky enough to grab one. It's pretty good, but not mind blowing.

Serving type: bottle

02-05-2012 20:44:50 | More by russwbeck
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79

New York

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

From 01/07/12 notes. Had at the last RB tasting. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a tulip.

a - Pours a dark mahogany brown color with two inches of dark tan head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of roasted malts, chocolate, bourbon, oakm vanilla, and light coffee. Bourbon isn't overpowering, pretty nice nose.

t - Tastes of roasted malts, bourbon, chocolate, coffee, oak, vanilla, and dark fruits. More bourbon than the nose.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Pretty easy to drink.

o - Overall a very nice beer. Bourbon isn't too strong, but definitely there. Would like to have it again.

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2012 02:32:36 | More by mdfb79
Photo of WankelEngine
WankelEngine

Illinois

3.83/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a snifter

A: As I pour there is hardly any head at all. Near the end of the pour, I pull the bottle away to try to stimulate some head. Even with this vigorous pour, there is only a one-finger dark tan head which fades quickly to a ring of foam around the edge of the glass leaving no lacing.

S: The nose leads with sweet brown sugar and molasses. There are also notes of dark chocolate and coffee. Raisin and fig meld well with the sugars and complement the bitterness. Whiskey is present and adds a little bit of heat.

T: Dark chocolate and raisins are the first thing I taste. As I savor, the chocolate flavor transforms into more of a coffee flavor. There is a little bit of spicy oak. Molasses and caramel sweeten everything up. The whiskey flavor is actually relatively mild and smooth, but still notable. The finish lingering and dry, but not overly bitter.

M: Not as thick as I would have expected. I wouldn't call it watery but it's definitely easier to drink that your typical whiskey barrel aged anything. Ever so slightly sticky and a playful effervescence.

O: A relatively easy drinking porter. Dark but smooth without an overwhelming whiskey presence.

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2012 07:18:46 | More by WankelEngine
Photo of sidetracked
sidetracked

Illinois

2.83/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Pours black with a nice foamy light brown head.

Aroma has a moderate bourbon presence, wood, some bitter roasted malts. Slightly sweet. Light alcohol heat as it warms.

Upfront taste is bitter baking chocolate, light bourbon and wood, and roasted malts. Finish is sweeter with some molasses and light bourbon, roastyness, and chocolate. Flavor isn't that strong. Some alcohol at the finish as it warms.

Medium to full bodied with a medium carbonation. Crisp and dry. Could be more substantial.

Falls short of what I expected. Aroma is great, but the taste and body don't match it. Seems kind of watery. Disappointing.

9/15/2011

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2012 05:48:35 | More by sidetracked
Photo of ThePorterSorter
ThePorterSorter

Missouri

4.45/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Snagged a few of these in a trade with ruizjoe!

Appearance:
The beer pours a jet black with a thick tan head that fades. The reason I'm giving this beer a slightly higher appearance score than usual is because of how damn rich it looks for an american porter...although I have my suspicions about this being an american porter vs a baltic.
There is very little lacing, but an oily residue is left behind in its place.
When the light hits the beer, the edges glisten a color that is purely sunset.

Smell:
A touch of yummy whiskey followed by a rich, chocolaty sweetness. The vanilla from the wood offers another candy element to this beer's nose. This smells very rich and smooth.

Taste:
Tastes like it smells with gorgeous wood barrel, caramelized sugars, chocolate, and roastiness pulled together by syrupy sweetness and high octane alcohol. The fruitiness that lingers after each sip reminds me of figs, raisins, and tobacco (not a fruit...).
It's one of the best barrel aged beers I've had ever, and almost reminds me of how I felt drinking BCBS for the first time.

Mouthfeel:
Thick, medium-full bodied beer with more carbonation than expected and heavy, heavy flavors that sit on your palate and linger. This is definitely a sipping beer and should be consumed at a slightly warmer temperature to experience its full potential. Kind of like biting into a whiskey, fudge brownie.

Overall:
Super impressed with this beer and I think it's the best FD beer available. The bottles cost $6-7 for a 12oz, which is quite reasonable and worth the cost. I also shared this beer at a recent bottle sharing event and most people were as impressed as I was with this beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2012 04:50:54 | More by ThePorterSorter
Photo of BB1313
BB1313

Ohio

4.25/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2011 vintage. 12oz bottle poured into a snifter. Pours a light black, light getting through, not too much head, lacing, retention, but still looks nice. Lots of rich milk chocolate blended with oak and whiskey. The whiskey is noticeable, but not completely dominant. More wood in the flavors and alot more chocolate. I can also pick up a nice amount of vanilla. More milk chocolate, roasted chocolate, chocolate. Chocolate is the star, followed by the oak. Bittersweet flavors. Mouthfeel is nice, light, and well carbonated. Maybe not as velvety as I expected, but there's still not much to complain about. This is a very easy drinking beer and the alcohol goes unnoticed.

This might not be a mind blower, but it's very well done. Great beer! Very tasty..

Serving type: bottle

01-09-2012 20:50:08 | More by BB1313
Photo of doughanson78
doughanson78

Washington

3.85/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Super black pour, pretty thick also. Pretty much no head save for a couple of bubbles.

S: Big oak and whiskey hit you in the face. Maybe a touch of chocolate.

T: Touch of chocolate upfront. Then big oak and whiskey hit your mouth. Some slight roasty notes. The whiskey is actually fairly smooth, with a mild bite in the throat.

M: Medium body. Almost no carbonation. Very light creaminess.

O: Not real impressed with this. I've heard how good it is, but it just doesn't do it for me. There wasn't anything wrong with it, but I like my porters with more porter qualities.

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2011 17:12:14 | More by doughanson78
Photo of MexicanSkittel
MexicanSkittel

California

3.9/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a dark black with no light making it through. A dark brown, slight ashy grey colored fluffy head sat gentlly on top about 3/8 inch high. Left nice lacing rings in the tulip after each sip.
Hints of espresso, caramel, chocolate, oak, vanilla, honey, we're all present, but there was an intense bourbon bath for all the other smells. A stinging alc pierced the nose like smelling a snifter of bourbon.

The pallet was a little over run by the bourbon at first, but gentlly opened over the next 15 then 30 45 mins. The alc died, leaving the choch and espresso leading the way dragging along with it an oak aged vanilla bean. Pretty tasty.

Again hot on the pallet at first with surprising gentle viscosity. Sipping and patients allowed a long finish to hang on the pallet. Very drinkable, giving you good flavors and a buzz after two, without being too heavy.

Overall I like this beer, would love more. Glad to know that not only the art work by Steadman was good but the beer as well.

Serving type: bottle

12-19-2011 15:40:31 | More by MexicanSkittel
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.85/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sour bourbon, edgy, big bourbon aroma. Nice imperial porter. 'bout time I rated it. Buffalo BA gathering. A sipper, smoother mouthfeel than the last time I had it, aided by understated carbonation.Deep brown colour. Must have something soothing after it.

Serving type: bottle

12-13-2011 00:57:22 | More by Sammy
Photo of jsulko
jsulko

Illinois

4.4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a snifter

Very dark black color. Dark brown chocolate looking head that fades quickly.

Smell is very heavy with the whiskey with a sweet maltyness as well.

Taste is very sweet with the whiskey dominating. Finish has a slight alcohol finish. Some vanilla notes in the flavor.

A very unique beer with a powerful taste.

Serving type: bottle

12-09-2011 03:34:51 | More by jsulko
Photo of dlello2
dlello2

Illinois

3.93/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pitch black. No light getting through the glass. Some red tinges to the corners. Some head but it faded quickly.

S - Chocolate AND bourbon bourbon bourbon. Smells REALLY sweet, almost overwhelmingly so. Just balanced enough that I'm excited to drink it though.

T - Mouthfeel is thick! - Taste is very sweet and major coffee notes shine through. Now I'm getting lots of chocolate. Bourbon smells wonderfully after drinking. Initial aftertaste of coffee/chocolate fades to a less pleasant bitterness. Coffee is lingering as well.

O - This is good. I don't know how drinkable it is... 12oz is a lot as it is so thick and sweet. The aftertaste doesn't exactly make you want to drink and drink.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2011 01:15:10 | More by dlello2
Photo of MarcatGSB
MarcatGSB

Michigan

4.45/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into Founders Snifter. Can't believe there is only one review for this beer...Purchased from Binny's for $5.69 or so a bottle.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown with a creamy khaki colored frothy, two finger head that dissipates quickly, leaving behind minimal lacing and a ring with a few internal bubbles.

Nose: Real crisp big oak nose, with some whiskey and dark malt coming through. A really beautiful smelling Imperial Porter.

Taste: The malt and mild vanilla oakiness really work well together. Some big whiskey notes finish with some real nice oak.

Mouth: The oak has quite a drying effect on the mouth, with really makes this beer enjoyable. Very complex, I'm impressed. Not a HUGE fan of the Gonzo Porter, but the extra time in the whiskey barrels really helps this thing shine.

Drink and overall: Wow, I grabbed a small hand full of these and wish I would have grabbed a few more. They were a bit pricey, but well worth it.

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2011 22:36:44 | More by MarcatGSB
Photo of endincolorado
endincolorado

Ohio

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

Pours an opaque black with a crema-like, foamy tan head and lots of lacing. Aroma is rich and roasty with sweet molasses, dark fruit, vanilla and wood. Black coffee and burn toast up front in flavor, followed by strong, dark-chocolate and a real vanilla-caramel sweetness that reminds me of some kind of baked-good. A complex medley of flavors lingers on the palate long after each sip. A full, creamy body and perfect carbonation make up the mouthfeel, followed by an alcoholic warmth from the whiskey barrel.

For the style, I feel that this is a nuanced, welcome escape from the norm, and a bit sweeter than most.

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2011 01:18:45 | More by endincolorado
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Barrel-Aged Gonzo Imperial Porter from Flying Dog Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 253 ratings.