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Ivan The Terrible Imperial Stout - Barrel-Aged - Big Sky Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Ivan The Terrible Imperial Stout - Barrel-AgedIvan The Terrible Imperial Stout - Barrel-Aged

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

267 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 267
Hads: 755
rAvg: 4.29
pDev: 8.86%
Wants: 806
Gots: 254 | FT: 20
Brewed by:
Big Sky Brewing Company visit their website
Montana, United States

Style | ABV
Russian Imperial Stout |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Bitterbill on 11-10-2008

2006 - 8.75% (draft only)
2007 - 8.75% (500ml flip top bottles ~ very limited)
2008 - 9.5% (750ml - capped - 1152 bottles)
2009 - 10% (750ml cork and cage)
2010 - 10% (750ml - cork and cage)
2011 - not brewed
2012 - 12.2% (750ml cork and cage)
2013 - 13.8%
2014 - 11.5% (750ml cork and cage)

Imperial stout aged 4 months in freshly dumped American oak Buffalo Trace bourbon barrels.

65 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 267 | Hads: 755
Photo of vkv822
4.48/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

750ml bottle into snifter.
2010 vintage.

Pours black with a giant foamy tan head that leaves spotty lacing.

The aroma is dominated by oaky bourbon upfront, and that's about all I'm getting in the nose.

Thankfully the taste lends more than bourbon. Along with the bourbon, I am getting very sweet vanilla from the oak with a touch of caramel and roasted malt. There is only a faint boozy heat from the ABV, and that is after it has warmed significantly.

The mouthfeel is thick and smooth, with just enough carbonation to keep it from being too heavy.

I was very impressed with this beer, and wish I had grabbed another bottle or two. The ABV stays very well hidden throughout the life of the bottle. (704 characters)

Photo of midaszero
4.48/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle 707/1125

My bottles says 8.75% on it for the ABV

A - Completely opaque black body with two solid fingers of coffee colored head

S - Sweet malts, chocolate, and molasses. A definite pronounced bourbon smell

T - WOW it is like melted chocolate with bourbon. Some coffee notes as well and a tad boozy but overall amazing.

M - Medium thick body with medium high carbonation

D - Pretty damn easy to drink and extremely enjoyable. I can't wait to put some time on this and let it mellow some. (499 characters)

Photo of tavernjef
4.48/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Deep brown pour to lay inky black in the glass with a huge towering cap of dark tanned foam thats' all lathery and thick. The foam shifts down slowly to a whispy skimming as it coats the glass with a drippy sheeting of lace around the glass.

Aroma is soft but quite nice when taken in as it boasts some nice bourbonyness mixing with chocolate and vanilla. Deep maple hints and dark fruity sweetness pulls thru as it warms as does some slight warmth.

Ooohh yah...this is nice. Smooth subtle tones and a full body carry lovely creamy infused chocolate cream pie with a huge amount of deep, dark maple syrup, vanilla, bourbony warmth and some smokey cedar woodyness and tinge. A tipping of roasty coffee bits and some figgyness emerge late under the bourbon warming and chocolate. Drys off ghostly under the warmth with dusty cocoa. Nice!

Mega smooth full body, creamy, silky, warm, with a slight bourbon tinge on the back of the palate. The smoothness is incredibly palatable! It's not as girthy as Goose Island BCS or other top notch RIS's and Dbl stouts, but its pretty damn full and very smooth.

Drinkable by gallons! So damn smooth and easy going its gone before ya know it. But that 10% would meet you before half way and destroy many brain cells. But yummyness sometimes supersedes responsibiliy... (1,306 characters)

Photo of beerandcycling88
4.48/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a snifter.

A The first thing that jumps out at you his how dark this one is. In fact I held it up to the sun and it actually blocked the light. The head was brown with decent retention.

S The nose is full of oak and bourbon. With some vanilla and what might be a hint of fruit

T the taste follows the nose, with bourbon being the most noticeable. There are also notes of fruit, vanilla, and a woody oak note. There is also a noticeable alcohol note as well.

M The mouth feel is full, but not as full as usual for an RIS which still works well for this particular beer.

Overall this is a pretty good RIS, not the best I've ever had, and the bourbon might have been a bit much for the style but still a great beer overall though. (761 characters)

Photo of KYGunner
4.49/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Everything about this calls out as a classic barrel aged stout. The pour is thick and viscous and the nose is full of barrel, vanilla, coconut, chocolate and bourbon.

The barrel properties are prominent at first with woodsy oak and bourbon. The middle palate serves that barrel sweetness of coconut and vanilla while it ends with chocolate, caramel and toffee. This is truly decadent and absolutely delicious. (410 characters)

Photo of maximum12
4.49/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle 1054 of 1152 from the first batch, 2008. Picked up a bottle at a local shop & they vanished in a heartbeat. The current version is now in stores, so I wanted to finally break this one open to see if it's worth another investment.

Pours black & vigorous. Smell is in the 'wow' stratosphere, with the promise of nutty chocolate & deep, real vanilla. This is a beer to hand to non-craft beer drinkers & say "take a whiff of this". If they don't want a drink after that, they're probably hopeless.

Ivan the Terrible comes out with a robe full of bourbon, but also with an armful of malts that keep it from reaching BCS territory & overwhelming the base brew. Bourbon, sweet malts, & vanilla pour into the palate. Chocolate runs to show, & there's an almost sherry, port-like fruit flavor that kicks into high gear as the liquid vanishes down my throat.

Paired up with the bourbon, it's an intriguing, delicious mess of a beer, & I mean that as a compliment. It's a sipper, but a rapid one, as I try to figure out what the hell is in my glass, & why.

Excellent beer that takes the notion of a barrel-aged RIS & does some cool things with it. Guess I'll be getting at least one more of the 2009 version, I'd like to try this fresh now! (1,242 characters)

Photo of woosterbill
4.49/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle into a Weyerbacher tulip. Sampled at a tasting.

A: Fully black body with a finger of dense brown foam. Solid retention and light lace. Great.

S: Holy. Shit. This is amazing. Bourbon, molasses, brown sugar, and roast. So rich, so deep, so amazing. One of the best-smelling beers I've ever encountered.

T: Super sweet, with all the molasses and brown sugar from the nose, plus some oaky vanilla and bourbon. Amazing, but maybe a trifle too sweet.

M: Full body with moderate, fine carbonation. Lovely.

D: The sweetness borders on cloyingness, but it...is...delicious.

Notes: Gigantic thanks to my new pal Warren for sharing this gem of a stout. I'd heard nothing but good things about Vlad, but I wasn't prepared for this. Even in a tasting that included Darkness '10, Abyss '06, IST '06, BA IST, and more, Ivan stood out as being the most delicious and memorable stout of the night. Now that's saying something.

Cheers! (931 characters)

Photo of GbVDave
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a corked and caged 750ml bottle into two pint glasses. Thanks to pops for the assist!

2009 Limited Edition
1221 of 3000

A: Pours a pure, evil black. Sitting on top is a about four fingers of dark mocha foam that features a lovely cascading effect. Those four fingers slowly settled down to about a fingers' worth of head that left a little bit of lace lingering on the glass.

S: Excellent balance in the nose. Equal parts bourbon, vanilla, dark fruit, charred barrel, booze, and tangy chocolate covered cherries.

T: Bourbon, dark fruit, and dark chocolate are the main players with ample supporting assistance from charred barrel, espresso, chocolate covered tangy orchard fruit, and dark rum.

M: I was expecting this to be really hot and messy, but instead I was rewarded with a smooth, full, and fully realized barrel aged beer. Sweet, sticky, and thick but in no way syrupy. Fantastic.

D: I'm accustomed to nose hair curling booziness that seems to go hand in hand with this style. This, however, was an exercise in restraint and layers. I can't wait to try this again... (1,092 characters)

Photo of dfillius
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Beggar's Banquet in E. Lansing for a "Meet the Brewer night". Served in a snifter

A: Mocha colored head with good retention. Opaque dark brown liquid.
S: Slight bourbon, rich vanilla, some molasses. Can a person smell oak? If so, I do. Maybe lactose? Slight booze aroma increases later on.
T: Very dark bittersweet chocolate (around 90% cocoa), french roast coffee, molasses, sugar cane, vanilla. Bourbon is very subdued thankfully! Complex and cohesive. A decent amount of hops (PNW citrus?) in the finish. Thanks to warnerry for pointing out the hops - I always miss those in RIS. Slight licorice in the finish.
M: Full feeling but not syrupy. Dry oaky and hoppy finish
O: Very good. Another superior BBA RIS. I enjoyed a second one! Dangerously drinkable. (769 characters)

Photo of FosterJM
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

823rd Review on BA
Bottle to Tulip
750ml C/C

2010 Bottle
#703/3800

Served a touch above cellar temp.

This was a mini gusher, A very loud pop when the cork was popped and a slow rolling foam came out the top.

App- Ivan had a lot of head behind it when first poured. It took a while to recede and when it did it settled to a two finger, very open and aerated head. A lot of bubbles. The color was a touch above inky black. Very dark, very dense. A lot of scattered cling and lacing. Very nice looking beer.

Smell- Opens very rich and full on the nose. Big bourbon notes followed by a medium level of vanilla and oak. A little bit but not much of say a chocolate covered cherries. Well blended with all aromatics not being overly dominant just complimentary to each other.

Taste- A very good stout. I traded for this one early this year and had been sitting on it. I had very high expectations for this one and this stout didn’t disappoint. This beer had a very mellow bourbon note with more of a vanilla character and roast stouts then most. GuruDel and I both commented on how this was smooth like BCBVS but more drinkable as its smoother with the vanilla. A touch of roast and fruit round out the flavor profile.

Mouth- Medium-full bodied beer with a paired carbonation level. Very vanilla on the palate with a touch of chocolate and roast.

Drink- Overall, Ivan crushed it. This was a very good beer with well rounded flavors and a great bourbon/oak touch. I waited a while to have this one and it didn't disappoint at all. Would love to get another bottle. (1,567 characters)

Photo of Urbancaver
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Shared at Jackie Os Friday before the bottle release.

Pours a dark dark brown with a tooon of tan head. Very appealing

Smells bourbony and chocolatey. There is a wonderful sweetness on the nose and the tongue. Vry wonderful dark chocolate on the tongue, a subtle bitterness with some vanilla and a nice subtle oak. (316 characters)

Photo of bonkers
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I split this with a friend and a 750 ml bottle was poured into standard pint glasses. Jet black in color with a thin tan head. The aroma is full of sweet bourbon, oak and vanilla. The flavor is sweet and full of rich malt, then the bourbon and oak flavors kick in. They are rounded out by a pleasant amount of chocolate. The bourbon lingers for a while on the finish. The beer is full bodied and has a creamy mouth feel to it. One of the better RIS I have enjoyed. Thanks to Dunt for this one. (493 characters)

Photo of tripelhops
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this at a recent store tasting, a 2011 batch into a small plastic cup. After a couple swirls the sides have a sheen on them like a coating of oil. The aroma is stong, smells of bourbon and oak dominate. The color is dark black with a small amount of tan / carmel colored head. Even a sampler is a sipper. Roasted malt, hints of chocolate and vanilla, but the bourbon and oak dominate, can't say much about the hops, and the alcohol is noticed at the end. This is one heck of an RIS, and from what I've tasted should be right up there with the best of them, and considering it's limited production, I'm surprised it's not, although maybe that's why too since it's hard to get. (681 characters)

Photo of Bighuge
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pitch black beer with a dense, tightly packed brown head. Hefty amounts of lace are dropped down as I drink. This smells really good. Chocolate, java, roast, coffee bean, bourbon, oak, vanilla bean.... Easy 5.0 here. Body is medium to medium-full. Beer is quite smooth and luxurious. Definite alcohol presence and the spiciness associated with it. Flavor is a lot of roast and chocolate and bourbon. Great combo. The alcohol smooths out a little as it warms, but is evident throughout the whole drink. Awesome beer overall. (523 characters)

Photo of misinformed
4.5/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2010 bottle, reviewed 5/28, tulip glass.

Very secure cork. I managed to break it off halfway while pulling it out, but a corkscrew soon set that right. Huge, vigorous pop; a sign of this beer's awesome carbonation.

A- Beautiful onyx black beer poured with 4" of vigorous cocoa brown head. The head eventually dropped down to a thick cloud that left behind some mild lacing.

S- Smells amazing. The aroma was apparent right after bottle was opened. Bourbon/alcohol. Sweet dark malt with some dark fruit notes. Oak and vanilla. The bourbon really becomes dominant as it warms.

T- Even richer than the nose lets on. Smooth cocoa/dark chocolate, sweet dark fruits, dark roasted malt, bourbon and alcohol. Oak and light vanilla show up more in the long finish.

M- Velvety smooth. Awesome high amount of carbonation and the perfect amount of alcohol burn.

O- Nice deep range of flavors. Great balance as well. It's sweet, but with enough bitterness to balance it out. Very active carbonation, which I found to be a plus. The alcohol becomes more assertive as it warms up. An excellent beer all around. Easily one of my favorites. (1,128 characters)

Photo of TheSaboteur
4.51/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beast of a BAIS wants to be poured! The rich, billowing, caramel, meringue, head rises quickly despite the most gentle of pours.

Deep obsidian...pitch black charcoal. Motor oil that is 2,000 miles past its date. It can only get worse from here.

Oak at the forefront...sweet and woody. Sweet Caramel with loads of vanilla. Oooooh...the bourbon, there it is. Very nice, but I wouldn't mind a bit more of you Mr. Beam. Hints of plum and or apricot round this bad boy out...excuse me while I wipe away the saliva on my chin.

Very sweet, but not over-done. Hint of cocoa at the forefront,loads of oak, fruity, caramel, perfect bourbon finish.

This is where it's at. Coats the mouth with a resinous, silky smooth, luscious bourbon lining. Chewy and thick...few compare.

I had two bottles. I shared this one with my brother (who also has 1). I am so tempted to crack the other open, but my self control has won out. I could have easily polished this beast off by my lonesome and would have enjoyed every last drop. Seek this out....I mean right now. One of the most well balance Bourbon Age Imperial Stouts I've had the pleasure of enjoying.

Cheers! (1,154 characters)

Photo of spicelab
4.52/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle 2010. Props to Mr Kennedy for sharing. Reviewed from notes.

Dark molasses with a beige head of mostly fine bubbles. Leaves decent lacing as it gradually falls in on itself.

Lifted and refined aromas of raspberry, dark fruits, cocoa, vinuous oak and molasses.

Taste articulates the same blend of mildness and satisfying complexity. The dry woody character from the barrel continues to cut through the sweeter, richer cherry-ripe and coconut flavours.

Amazingly clean and uncannily light for a RIS. Buzzy carbonation dusts the palate and transitions into a dry finish.

Excellent RIS. Impressively approachable, in contrast with the more hulking RISs (not that I'm at all averse to them). Feels a little ironic to rate this highly for being unlike what I expect from a RIS, but whatever. A great beer, only lacks the high-end wow-factor. (847 characters)

Photo of tjkinate
4.52/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2010 Vintage

A: 1+ fingered head formed atop this deep brown brew from a hard pour into a snifter. Head had decent retention settling to a thick foam that left some lacing in its wake.

S: Dark fruits, vanilla, hefty amount of bourbon with a pungent sweet caramel backbone.

T: The beer tastes nothing like it smelled, trust me, that is not a bad thing this time. Big difference is that the beer smelled so sweet, but doesn't taste sweet. I detected hints of light coffee, semi-sweet chocolate, pecans and chestnuts followed by bourbon undertones. Perfect beer for a cold winter night, or a warm spring night like the one during my tasting!

M: Medium bodied for the style, mild carbonation, creamy and smooth.

O: Fantastic brew that I will definitely be seeking again in the future. (785 characters)

Photo of GregSVT
4.55/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750ml corked and caged bottle into a snifter - 2009 Vintage

A: Pours a dark black with a real nice brown head that fades to a layer leaving a good amount lacing on the glass.

S: The nose immediately hits you with whiskey and then settles into nice cocoa and vanilla aromas. Really smells like milk chocolate.

T: The taste starts with a lot of dark fruit and chocolate leading to a really nice molasses and vanilla flavor and ending with a nice sweetness on the finish. Barely any booze detectable...just big rich flavors.

M: The feel is big and chewy with a beautiful creamy texture. Great stuff.

D: Wow I found my new favorite barrel aged RIS. This is way too drinkable for 10%.

Side note: toughest cage to get off ever...it was wound so damn tight I hurt my fingers getting it off. (790 characters)

Photo of Thorpe429
4.57/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Shared with bmanning, Azurelimits, amyliz4, and hhanson at a recent tasting.

A: Pours a deep chestnut brown, bordering on black. Slight hints of crimson in the light.

S: Bourbon, oak, roasted malt, vanilla, and a bit of dark fruit.

T: The bourbon and oak really explode here atop the roasted malt. Excellent taste and much more than I expected. Nice undertons of vanilla and brown sugar.

M: Pretty full body with good carbonation and not much of any alcohol heat, especially considering all the wonderful flavors that came out of the barrel aging.

D: Incredibly drinkable. I don't know when the last time was that I had a barrel-aged beer drink so smoothly. Almost reminds me of BA Speedway in that regard. Something I'd love to get my hands on more of. (760 characters)

Photo of BEERchitect
4.57/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

When talking with folks from Montana about the local craft beer scene, the conversation moves to Moose Drool, Moose Drool, and then Moose Drool some more. Little do they know that one of the more delectable Imperial American Stouts is brewed underneath their nose.

Ivan the Terrible pours with a voluminous and froathy pour that takes several seconds for the liquid to separate from the bubbles. Jet black in color, or dark enough brown to make me think black, the beer shows complete opaqueness. The absolute froathy sandy brown head forms a thick cap on the beer and reduces ever so slowly until it forms a thick blanket on the surface. Moderate lace shows intermittent patterns of foam on the glass.

Incredibly malty and rich aromas awaken the nose with the savory scent of heavy whipping cream, whoppers candies, brown sugar, vanilla, candied almonds, sweet booze, and all of the rich notes of french toast from the kitchen that would wake me as a child. Chocolate, dark roast coffee, and fruity plumbs and cherries all start to define the complex aromas as the beer warms.

Flavors start out much the same- with the succulent and savory taste of vanilla, chocolate, almonds, molasses, and whipped cream sweetness, just before the hops and alcohol remind me that this is indeed a fortified Stout. Grape, plumb, and blackberry fruits come across similarly as port wines and brandies. Grassy flavors, oaken woods, maple, coconut, and bourbon (almost rum-like) alcohols rise midway through and morph into a semi-sharp hop bitterness and intensifying bourbon aggression nearing the finish.

Vast, creamy, and robust in body as the beer opens with strong and expansive carbonation which accents the cream and velvet textures. The mouthfeel actually improves after the distraction of excessive carbonation subsides and leaves the tongue with a silky and smooth texture that recedes at mid palate to usher in the hop bitterness and alcohol warmth that allow the beer to dry toward a malty-dry semi-sweet finish. But the aftertaste of starchy malt and chocolate linger with the taste of whoppers candies and french toast.

The American Stout signatures of dryness and hops are well displayed, but the smooth chocolate and milky taste and textures work wonderfully in this beer. The 65 ibus are kept in check by the wonderfully varying malt flavors for ultimate complexity and roundness. (2,385 characters)

Photo of MbpBugeye
4.57/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I wasnt planning on getting into Blind Beers Round 4, but AleWatcher had different plans. Bottle #1 from an unsolicited box of blinds.

Reviewed completely blind.

The first one I pulled out was a C&C green glass 750ml. I had to know what this big green bottle was. I initially thought it would be Belgian since not many US brewers use green glass. Jeff told me nothing in this box is Belgian so now I'm really curious. Either way I knew it was going to be something Ive never had.

A- There was quite a bit of sediment that worked its way up to the top of the neck so I had to let this one settle for a couple days. I still got a few chunks of it in our glasses but nothing too messy. The pour is cola brown that forms a dark black beer with purple and root beer edges. A fluffy, off white head rises up with a little bit of crackling. There is copious lace. Is this some huge porter? 4.5

S- The aroma is very fruity. Fig puree, plums, sweet black cherries,dates etc, etc, etc. These rich fruits only become deeper, richer and sweeter as it warms. There is plenty of smooth vanilla or oak and maybe some light bourbon. At this juncture I cant decide if this is barrel aged or has vanilla. I'm leaning towards some sort of crazy blend. At any rate, this aroma is phenomenal. 5

T- This beer is very, very rich on the dark fruits. Bourbon oak brings lots of vanilla after adequate warming. There is a little bit of spice, maybe cinnamon. There is a clear cut chocolate malt base that really boosts the sweet decadence of this stuff. More sweet cherries and figs. Belgian yeast? Blend? Is this some sort of barrel aged quad or BSDA? 4.5

M- The body is on the high side of medium. Clean finish despite the dense sweetness. Carbonation is soft but prickly. 4

D- This stuff is very tasty. Its so rich on the fruitness Im thinking its some sort of Belgian style, perhaps blended and aged in bourbon. 4.5

The reveal: Big Sky Ivan the Terrible!! Sick! I wasnt really thinking stout, its so sweet and fruity. This is bottle 3554/3800. (2,032 characters)

Photo of ChrisPro
4.58/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2009 bottle tasted on 6/5/10 thanks to callmemickey!

Pours jet black with huge bubbly dark mocha head.

Aroma was beautiful oak and coconut, with some great chocolate and vanilla and hints of molasses.

Flavor was nice sweet chocolate and bourbon, with a slightly bitter, balanced finish.

This was easily one of the smoothest imperial stouts I have every head and the mouthfeel was like silk sliding across my tongue.

Incredibly drinkable and I feel like I could put away a whole 750 mL if given the chance. I now understand why I like the Bottleworks XI so much. (567 characters)

Photo of dgilks
4.58/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2010 bottle opened for as part of a birthday celebration.

Inky black. Light sucking. Small, creamy, dark tan head. Good head retention.

Very rich aroma. Lots of nuts and alcohol. Caramel and toffee. Vanilla. Oak. Bourbon. A little earthy in the background. Sweet chocolate. Very nice.

Medium-sweet malt with some very light fruitiness. Lots of toffee. Bourbon oak and chocolate. Excellent.

Medium-full body with moderate carbonation. Nice and very creamy.

An excellent stout. Wonderfully creamy and complex. Nice chocolate and malt flavours. Well integrated oak. It has been a while since I've had a nice Bourbon Barrelled Stout and I'm loving it. (653 characters)

Photo of drabmuh
4.59/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beer shared by Lunch at a recent tasting. Thanks Paul! This was pretty high on my list of things to taste. I really appreciate it. Bottle 1209 / 3000. Beer served in a tulip. Beer is black with a brown head. Head leaves some lacing on the glass. Beer is brownish at the corners, almost a red hue to it. Looks good.

Aroma is WONDERFUL, unfortunate I find out that the taste does not live up to the hype of the aroma this time but its full of bourbon, chocolate, a little vanilla, some oakiness, sweetness and roast in the back. Complex but distinct, wonderful.

The beer is medium bodied and seems at times a little thin on the palate. There is some of the flavors that were in the aroma but its not quite as good as the smell would lead you to believe. Its a good beer and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It may have been slated for failure when we tried it next to Parabola but it still held its own. (895 characters)

Ivan The Terrible Imperial Stout - Barrel-Aged from Big Sky Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 267 ratings.