The Event Horizon | Olde Hickory Brewery

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
96
world-class
276 Reviews
BEER STATS
Reviews:
276
Ratings:
1,632
Avg:
4.36
pDev:
21.33%
 
 
Wants:
845
Gots:
542
For Trade:
90
The Event HorizonThe Event Horizon
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Olde Hickory Brewery
North Carolina, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Habmike on 12-08-2010

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Reviews: 276 | Ratings: 1,632
Photo of smanson56
4.59/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a dark black color into my snifter glass. the dark tan head disappeared fast at the end of the pour.
The beer is something that is barrel aged from the nose. This is a wonderfully done beer from the nose.
The taste follows the nose lots of barrel aging and lots of nicely roasted malts perhaps a little coffee overtone but it might be from the roasted malts.
The mouth feel is perfect nice smooth the creaminess is there the way a great BBA stout should be

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Photo of Gtreid
4.42/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bomber poured into my cigar city tulip.

A: Pretty much opaque. A two finger, dark brown, head appeard and left some nice rings of lace.

A: Smells of rich chocolate, toffee, vanilla, roasted coffee, and caramel. The bourbon notes are not as in your face as other BA brews of the same caliber. But IMO are right on the mark.

T: Just an outstanding fusion of the barrel and the beer. Bourbon, as in the nose, is not overpowering, but accentuating. The notes of vanilla and caramel from the barrel balance perfectly with the roasty coffee and chocolate flavors in the brew.

M: Mouthfeel is a touch thin, but carbonation is just about right.

O: A really outstanding beer. I am very impressed by the balance between the barrel and the beer. I would absolutely have this one again. Skal.

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Photo of mulder1010
4.32/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Beerness for this bottle. Owe you big time on this.
Shared with Mr. Kennedy
Bomber poured into a snifter

A-- Thick, dark, bold and oily. Looked like pure motor oil at first and then a half finger of dark leather head reverse cascaded up. Eventually no film at all. Head stuck around a little bit and went to dark leather film. Left no lacing at all but a dark, oily substance on the sides of the glass. Looks a lot bigger than what it should be. As I drank on I did get red tints on the sides of the glass but otherwise pitch black.

S-- Dark chocolate, milk chocolate, cherry dates, marshmallow, oak, bourbon and cheese?? I thought slight hints of blue cheese mixed with parmigiana cheese. Really bizarre but good smell. Kept changing by the minute. Oak and bourbon really small in comparison to the rest or the smells.

T-- Thick, rich and dark. A brownie on overload really. Chocolate, Carmel, marshmallow, coffee, and some hops to give this life and a bit prickly.

M-- Chewy, thick and rich. Almost decadent in a way. Hops faded in the mouth, leaving milk chocolate, changing to bakers chocolate, with Carmel and coffee acidity in the end. Bourbon and oak still on the soft side here. Alcohol is non existent for the size of the beer. Low carbonation and massive heavy feel. Lots of malts with this. Does get a bit one dimensional at the end.

O-- A much bigger feeling stout than it really is. Big beer but easy to drink. Could use a bit more carbonation and more of a silky feel to it though, as it became very coffee acidic in the end. Quite unique as the hints of bourbon and Oak just toy with the senses. This was far more about malts than anything else. Worth trying.

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Photo of kkleu357
4.1/5  rDev -6%

From notes on 4/5/14

Bought a bomber of this while down in Chapel Hill for work. Heard it was good and sort of sought after around here. Poured jet black with a 1.5 inch dark brown head. Lots of boozy smell. Very sweet smelling. Reminds me of the smell of melting chocolate. Some mild fruit aromas as well. Very tasty. Lots of boozy bourbon flavor. More than most barrel aged beers. Lots of roasty sweet chocolate flavors. Slightly raisin and floral tastes. Pretty good. Very heavy though. I’m sitting in my hotel room by myself. Wish I had someone to share this with. Might be hard to get through.

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Photo of brew3crew
4.47/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-black body with a tan head that quickly disapates
S-nice oaky smell. Almost smells like licorice.
T-a lot like it smells. Very smooth oak burbon taste.
M-medium. Body and so smooth
O-good brew. Close to worth or equal to the hype. Crazy drinkable and redonkulously smooth. Only knock is no head...

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Photo of MrVonzipper
4.42/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours an oily viscous black with a mocha foamy head. Decent retention and spotty lacing. 

Nice nose full of chocolate brownie and dark fruit. A little bourbon. 

Flavor is quite nice. Great balance and a wide range of flavor. Nice roasted nutty notes along with mild dark fruit, bitter chocolate, molasses, mocha coffee and a touch of rich dark honey on the back end. 

Full bodied mouth. Creamy smooth medium carbonation and a little bit dry  

This is a fantastic beer. Very well executed. Great all around.   

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Photo of billshmeinke
4.23/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Inky black color with a sort of rust brown head.

Smells of bakers chocolate, molasses, oak, taninins, a touch of chalk, dark chocolate, charred malt and some tar.

The taste is a little heavy on the honey, lots of tannins and oak, a good bit of char in the finish, but not much bourbon character. The honey/molasses is overpowering at the front with too much char on th end.

Mothfeel is heavy, but slick and not too syrupy. Carbonation is great. It could be more viscous though.

Not my favorite bourbon imperial stout to say the least. I felt like it went from somewhat cloying sweetness straight to tar like tannic flavors. Alcohol is fairly well hidden though.

REVISED:

Sampled at oakquinox. It's awesome. Clearly some bottle variation on this one.

Look is the same. Smell is chocolate, fudge, brownie, tobacco, WTF this is not the same beer. Taste follows smell plus some toffee and coffee.

Dear Olde Hickory, you guys blow at bottling. Waaay too much variation. This is a fantastic beer, but y'all North Carolina homies need to figure your shit out. Kthanxbye!

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Photo of jeonseh
3.96/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Shared by leftyhyzer at NWI tasting group super bowl drinking

A - Dark chocolate color with thick body that coats the glass. Light brown on the edges with small amounts of carbonation and not head

S - Bourbon on the nose with light caramel and vanilla. Dark, roasted chocolate and slight honey

T - Sweet bourbon vanilla up front with light caramel. Light honey, roasted malt, and slight smokiness. Finish is slight roasted coffee that lingers on

MF - Light body with light bitter coffee that lingers on in the finish to create a slight astringency

O - Solid fudgy beer with chocolate and honey sweetness. The honey adds a nice sweetness to the beer overall that is unique in a stout

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Photo of VaTechHopHead
4.42/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours thick and looks like used motor oil. Quick fading head and leaves good lacing

Reeks of Bourbon in a good way, slightly sweet from the honey and a slight dryness from the malts

Tastes sweet right from the start but the Bourbon kicks in very quickly along with dry wood and highly roasted malts. Finishes with a slight alcohol burn and leaves the palate dry

Heavy body with very low volumes of carbonation, finishes semi dry and aftertaste fades quickly. Alcohol is noticeable but not in a bad way. Easy to drink slow

An excellent beer and the honey adds a nice sweet touch to a style with big and robust flavors. Definitely a seeker

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Photo of gueuzedreg
4.51/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

2012 bottle

A- Deep dark pitch black with medium to medium low on lacing, dark coffee in color. Minimal legs.

S- Even at it low ABV relatively speaking with some other big BA stouts, this comes off as a chocolate-first bourbon bomb. Nice toffee and creamy malt notes in there too! There is a lot going on in this beer.

T- Following the nose with big chocolate, a very nice calm and very present bourbon presence. The toffee and smooth malt is there to finish a superbly made BA stout.

M- My knock on Lindley was the lack of carb; this has the perfect about of carb and it is very smooth and very creamy. Love it.

O- Olde Hickory is new on my radar, but I love the BA stouts they are doing!!

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Photo of kevdemers
4.3/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22 oz bomber dated almost exactly a year ago!

Look:
Very dark brown with brown head. A lot of late carbonation after the pour.

Smell:
A lot of honey and bourbon on the nose.

Taste:
Outstanding, a lot of flavor, I've had other stouts much greater in ABV with not as good a profile. Quick roasty start gives way quickly to a more ashtray finish (the only negative). Hot alcohol on the taste but no burn due to the relatively low ABV, a tricky palate-twister.

Feel:
Slightly thin but finishes nicely with the aforementioned late carb.

Overall:
Fantastic impy stout, glad my NC trading partner shared this.

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Photo of aleckpa
4.5/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served from a 32 oz. growler from Hops and Grapes in Hickory, North Carolina.

A: Black like motor oil. There is a small burnt mocha head that goes away quickly However, there’s great lacing. Can’t see anything through it.

S: Vanilla, chocolate, oak, and of course some bourbon This is a really good smelling beer. A lot of the flavors are subtle, but complex. All the scents come out as the beer warms.

T: Front of the tongue, I taste the bourbon, back of the tongue I get the flavors I smelled. The vanilla, chocolate, oak, and bourbon. Also get some honey. There is some alcohol burn, which surprised me at 8.5%, but it isn't bad. Regardless, it is dangerously easily drinkable.

M: Creamy, smooth, and full bodied. Not too thick, well balanced. Feel some of the tingle on your tongue from the carbonation.

O: This is easily my favorite offerings from Olde Hickory. I think it is well balanced with a lot of complexities. It tastes even better as it warms. I highly recommend it.

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Photo of mverity
4.14/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a deep inky black with a medium chocolaty head that faded within 45 seconds into a medium collar and wisps at the surface. Aroma is dark chocolate, deeply roasted malt, some charred earth, some wine-like must. Taste is earthy and roasty at the front, some dark chocolate in the middle, and some wine must at the end. The honey really plays well in the aftertaste. Thick rich body and medium carbonation.

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Photo of tewaris
4.07/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I don't quite remember who shared it but I think it was Kevin again. Thanks!
Fairly standard -bal Imperial Stout with a dark, smooth body and tiny head. The aroma is full of chocolate notes and vanilla, and of course bourbon. Tastes chocolaty and is reminiscent of BCBS without the booze. Mouthfeel is good for an ~8% beer. An achievement in the sense that so much flavor is packed into this beer without being too strong. Very very good.
3.5, 4, 4, 4, 4.5

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Photo of GregSVT
3.45/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

22oz bottle into a tulip - 2011 Vintage

A: Pours a very dark brown, nearly totally black, with a medium sized brown head that fades to a ring and leaves some lacing on the glass.

S: The nose is full of vanilla, hints of molasses, dark roasted malts, bakers chocolate, and some earthy hops in the background. The hops actually lend an odd aroma which I'm not a fan of...the rest smells delicious.

T: The taste is molasses, vanilla, dark chocolate, honey, and the earthy hops from the nose. It's a touch bitter on the finish which is surprising.

M: The feel is thick and creamy.

O: This isn't much different from the regular Imperial Stout besides some vanilla and molasses characteristics. The feel is about the best part of the beer. Could probably use a bit more time in the barrel.

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Photo of jpro
3.83/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

22oz (2013) bottle from Peabody's. Poured into a Left Hand stout glass...

A: pours black with a three finger, mocha head of milkshake-like foam; no lace.

S: bourbon; vanilla; sweet malt and honey; a touch hot as it warms.

T: chocolate; sweet roasted malt; bourbon; honey; it's not that rosary or bitter... Perhaps a bit too sweet.

M: medium-full body; high carbonation; sticky.

O: a nice barrel aged stout, but too sweet for me.

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Photo of WunderLlama
4.49/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber poured into a glass

Black liquid, thin brown layer of brown bubbles

Aroma of bourbon, teriyaki?, umami?

Taste of bourbon, honey , coffee, charcoal charred oak,

Feel the alcohol but doesn't burn, smooth, silky, rich

Great beer

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Photo of claaark13
4.25/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This one arrived unexpectedly on a Friday afternoon. Poured into a Founders snifter. Thanks morimoto, what a surprise.

A - Black, thick appearance with a thick medium tan colored head. Lacing remains across the surface once the head clears. Sticks well to the side of the glass.

S - Just about as bourbon forward as it can get, with some licorice sneaking through. Very potent, very appealing.

T - Honey, bourbon, cocoa. The taste feels a little light in the middle. Finishes with some more bourbon, oak and some hints of cocoa. The flavor is lighter than I'd expect, and doesn't allow for any of the individual notes to dominate. The honey helps carry the flavors from start to finish.

M - Medium and slightly prickly body. The beer appears to be thicker than it feels on the tongue. Highly drinkable based on the somewhat subdued flavor and medium body.

O - Although I find the flavor to be a little light for a BA RIS, this beer drinks so easily. It is also impressive that it is kept at 8.5% with this much bourbon in the aroma and flavor.

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Photo of -Rick
4.44/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: Jet black, looks like oil
S: whiskey, coffee,
T: The initial taste is bourbon forward, but not in a bad way. Not much heat from the bourbon. Has a nice sweet aftertaste. The honey compliments the whiskey quite well
F: oily and slick, with a decent amount of carbonation.
O: super solid stout. Would certainly try again.

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Photo of s1ckboy
3.9/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

2011 bottle with about 6 months of age on it.

A - Black body with a finger or so of tan head.

S - Bourbon, oak, sweeness (honey I suppose), hint of dark fruits.

T - A lot of bitterness initially that lingers, chocolate, bourbon, prunes/dates, not really picking up the honey. Bourbon is a bit on the hot side, could have aged this for a while longer.

M - On the lighter side of full. Fairly smooth even with the hot bourbon. Medium carbonation.

Smells sweet, tastes bitter. I think some age would do this a lot of good. Should have gotten 2!

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Photo of ChadQuest
3/5  rDev -31.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I had two differant bottles both Pre & during DLD, One from Hannydawg and not sure about the others bringer, but thanks to both for keeping me from trading alot away for the chance to try this one.
The pour is less dark then expected and is a dark brown with moderate viscosity. I't looks average for a 8.5% stout, i would have liked to see more viscosity & depth of color.
The aroma and flavors really took me off guard, and had huge dark fruit influence throughout with strong Prune & Raisons, with a Soy & Molasses paste holding it together. There was powdered cacao blended in somewhat. I didn't notice any heat and no barrel influence either which was a let down, as being from PVW barrels this is treated as if gold.

This was one of the beers i was really excited for when i saw it out, but it was a let down. I even gave it a 2nd chance the next day, and can't report any differant.

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Photo of khiasmus
4.17/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Dressed all in black he is, a gangly silhouette of bones, coattails and the ever-present tan top hat and collar, his signature of sorts. Few know his story, they only know him as the lurker upon the street corner, to be seen by the lamplight, and a "g'devenin sir," or "howdy, ma'am," all to be heard. Next to the old baker's shop, he can sometimes be seen seated comfortably atop an old icing-bucket, humming small swatches of forgotten tunes and grinning at any passersby, as some small children run to him and give him great big hugs, while others cower behind their well-to-do mothers who hurry past.
The aromas waft out of the bakery-door... The old walls of oak still lending their peculiar brand to all of the other aromas that are fighting their way to be first in your nostrils, perhaps they'll make a lasting impression and you'll choose this bread or that pastry... toffee, almonds, coconut, chocolate, a peculiar candy-sweetness from all of the sugar caramelizing, and he smiles and lights his pipe as you step into the wonderland of flavours and tastes, he looks on from outside as each new flavour captures you in its grasp and takes your tastebuds and mind on a fantasy tour, one complete with the low humming of his forgotten songs and the occasional "howdy do!"
So you pull your bourbon-flask from your pocket and take a pull between each new delectable treat that is placed before you, and the experience melds into something like this: bourbon barrel infused with toffee and chocolate, coconut and vanilla, "g'day sir," coffee-bitter with amaretto and cocoa, "Yes ma'am, well ma'am, thankee ma'am," a slight warm finish of dark chocolate and hazelnut-cream "evenin, young feller."
Thin and warm, the bourbon washes down the wisps of sugar-cane and brown sugar, a plain-as-day representation of a light syrup extracted to a dark brown congelatin chocolate monster, a ridiculously roasty and nutty version of the style...
So you step down and out of the shop, a few choice parcels under your arm and a slight lilt in your voice, "g'day, sir," "g'day young feller. Find somethin' to your likin?"
"Yes sir."
"Well son, I tell 'ee... naught but a few in this 'eer warn world can build 'em like 'at. You'd a-better enjoy that 'un. I heard tell the ol' shop-keeps about done in this 'eer warn world. You'd a-better enjoy them 'uns awhile 'ees 'eer... I spect when he goes on up to the great kitchen, well 'eel receive a job well done... but me, son, I'll be a-movin on, and make no mistake."
"Thank you sir."
"g'day, son. Make your mama proud today."
"Yes sir."

Thanks to kkipple for a taste of this.

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Photo of SFNC
4.34/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours black as night with practically no head
Smell is Bourbon, tobacco, molasses, scorched sugar and bakers chocolate. Very, very nice!
Taste; Mimics the smell, but this might have spent a little too long in the barrel. The bourbon is quite strong, also a tad too sweet, still enjoyable, but a little restraint would have this in the stratosphere.
Feel is sticky and a big burn from the bourbon. A tad harsh and I love bourbon!
Overall, despite the negatives, quite enjoyable. Some tweaks and this would be mind-blowing!

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Photo of JeffreyJDavis
4.72/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Finally found a bottle of the 2012 release over the weekend and was anxiously looking forward to popping it last night. This beer is pretty legendary in our parts, and the mixture of several malts, 4 hops, locally farmed honey and aging in bourbon barrels is infamous. Poured from a bomber into a Dogfish Head glass.

A: Near jet black/brown, no turbidity but virtually opaque. Minimal head, first pour gave me maybe 5mm thin line and 2nd pour (a little warmer and more vigourous) gave be a nice 2 finger chocolate brown head which pretty minimal retention and some light lacing.

S: You immediately get the feeling that this will be a big boozy monster. You smell the honey sweetness first, but the bourbon notes dominate the nose. Nose is almost quad-like and says "buckle up".

T: Again you get honey and brown sugar sweetness on the entry, with a finish which is really driven by the charred bourbon barrels. It's nice and very elegant. This beer changes dramatically in complexity as it warms and opens up. First pour (cool) is really driven by honey and bourbon, but once it warms for 15 - 20 minutes you start to pick up lots of other layers: dry cocoa powder, toffee , caramel and vanilla. Almost each sip can be a little different. Really complex and intriguing. This is not a boozy beer at all, no alcohol burn, the nose is just deceiving in that it gives you that impression that you are in for a monster.

MF: Really slick, oily and viscous. Not fork and knife thick like some imperial stouts, but definitely substantial. Coats the mouth in a very sexual way which is addictive, especially near the bottom of the glass. I actually would have liked a bump more carbonation to release the flavors more fully, but I think subtle is part of the plot here.

All in all, A truly EPIC beer which lives up to the hype of being one of the best, if not , the best beer brewed in North Carolina. Definitely worth searching and definitely worth cellaring. Let it open and warm a bit for maximum enjoyment.

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Photo of Soonami
4.62/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to BrewerDan23 for generously sharing a bottle of Event Horizon at a recent tasting. I am now ISO of one, although the 900 bottle run might make it tough to get.

This beer is pitch black with mocha that quickly dissolves to a finely knit ring of lace. The aroma is earthy and mushroomy featuring the smell of freshly baked bread and a light whiff of bourbon. The beer tastes very creamy and light on the palate for a double stout. There is a hot chocolate quality to the roasted malt that isn't too harsh or astringent. It's not too sweet with a great drying oaky bourbon finish. As it warms the barrel character really comes out and you can really pick out toasted coconut.

This is a delicious beer and I guess the delicate menage of malt, roast, barrel and bourbon is helped by the low ABV that really allows the individual ingredients to shine and not be masked by the high alcohol or residual sweetness. This definitely lives up to the hype.

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The Event Horizon from Olde Hickory Brewery
96 out of 100 based on 276 ratings.