1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

John Henry 3 Lick Spiker Ale - Cold Spring Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
John Henry 3 Lick Spiker AleJohn Henry 3 Lick Spiker Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

368 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 368
Reviews: 166
rAvg: 3.71
pDev: 13.75%
Wants: 15
Gots: 31 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Cold Spring Brewing Co. visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  9.10% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Three Lick Spiker Ale is brewed with three different roasted malts creating chocolate flavors and full body taste. After fermentation has been completed with our top fermenting ale yeast we infuse our brew with bourbon oak aged chips and let the extended aging process take over. Hints of bourbon and vanilla from the oak come through the aroma and flavor.

(Beer added by: ClockworkOrange on 01-02-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 368 | Reviews: 166 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JamesMN


3.74/5  rDev +0.8%

Appearance: Black with decent clarity even though you can't see through it because of the color. Thin light brown head with some nice froth around the edges.

Aroma: A lot of nice characteristics here, all slightly subdued. Vanilla, oak, roasted malt, char, caramel, and a touch of pineapple.

Taste: Starts with lightly roasted malts that really aren't all that special. The special part of this one is all in the finish. Right away after each sip there is a warmth on the palate and then a smokey flavor emerges that is quite interesting. A mix of smoked oak and alcohol. Not getting too much bourbon flavor. Very moderate bitterness here. I think I'd file this one more under Imperial Brown Ale.

Mouthfeel: Surprisingly thin for 9.1% ABV but that lends to an ease of drinkability. The effervescence can be a bit much. I would not session this as one is plenty.

Final Thoughts: For what it is and the price point ($8.99 for a four pack) it's not a bad deal. It would work well as an introductory beer for someone just getting into oak aged ales. However, it doesn't pack the bourbon punch that was expected and lacks in body. Would I drink it again? Let's put it this way, I wouldn't seek it out.

01-25-2013 20:06:57 | More by JamesMN
Photo of TerryBunch


4.5/5  rDev +21.3%

01-24-2013 00:42:50 | More by TerryBunch
Photo of shockrocker65


3.75/5  rDev +1.1%

01-21-2013 00:47:36 | More by shockrocker65
Photo of chriszuma


5/5  rDev +34.8%

01-14-2013 21:56:46 | More by chriszuma
Photo of Rick760Sd


3.25/5  rDev -12.4%

12-30-2012 17:38:28 | More by Rick760Sd
Photo of imthaschmidt

3/5  rDev -19.1%

12-28-2012 17:55:21 | More by imthaschmidt
Photo of Flounder57


3.65/5  rDev -1.6%

12 oz bottle was poured into a snifter.

Appearance: This beer poured a minimal head that reduced to nothing quickly. It is a pitch black color with no clarity, but you can see bubbles coming up the top of the snifter.

Smell: bourbon, vanilla, caramel, toffee, molasses, sweet aromas, and oak.

Taste: A nice blend of above flavors. Some lingering bitterness in the end and the boozy alcohol is hidden well too.

Mouthfeel: Silky smooth, full bodied, medium carbonation, and a warming feeling on this cold winter day.

Overall: A nice ASA that does well with the addition of bourbon oak chips. Some slight off flavors, but still a good beer overall.

12-22-2012 20:58:13 | More by Flounder57
Photo of vobr0002


3.25/5  rDev -12.4%

12-22-2012 04:11:19 | More by vobr0002
Photo of RashyGrillCook


3.8/5  rDev +2.4%

Served out of a 12oz bottle into my CCB snifter.

A: Pours like a stout. Dark, viscous and with minimal head.

S: Lots of roasted malts, some smoky oaky bourbon sweetness as well. The nose was very surprising. Scored high in this category.

T&M: Again, HUGE roasted malts right up front. Bourbon and oak are almost non existent. Maybe some oaky vanilla notes on the finish. Feel is a little numbing on the tongue.

O: I had no real expectations when I cracked this but was pleasantly surprised and am really glad I gave this beer a try. I would buy this again and would definitely recommend it to those who like roasted malt bombs.

12-21-2012 04:56:08 | More by RashyGrillCook
Photo of King_KongDCO93


3.5/5  rDev -5.7%

12-19-2012 16:13:57 | More by King_KongDCO93
Photo of sjstraub


3/5  rDev -19.1%

12-18-2012 05:19:51 | More by sjstraub
Photo of bashiba


3.73/5  rDev +0.5%

Poured a deep clear brown with dark ruby highlights, a light creamy tan head.

Has a sweet caramel and chocolate nose with a touch of oak. Good just a bit mild.

A nice mixture of chocolate and caramel malts, a bit sweet with some light touches of oak and vanilla.

The mouthfeel has a nice silky creamy quality to it.

A pretty drinkable strong ale, drinks like a nice imperial vanilla porter to me, has more chocolate and vanilla qualities than it does bourbon, but the oak does come through a touch.

12-16-2012 00:40:58 | More by bashiba
Photo of tgordo


3.5/5  rDev -5.7%

12-13-2012 04:31:36 | More by tgordo
Photo of krl2112


3.5/5  rDev -5.7%

12-07-2012 20:12:25 | More by krl2112
Photo of jermarley


4.28/5  rDev +15.4%

What a beer! In MN we have some amazing breweries. Infact, we have so many new breweries we sometimes forget to step back and take a look at what craft beers have been around for some time. I was recently given a 4 pack and the appropriate glassware to enjoy John Henry with.

What a treat, We have a pretty popular brewery around the twin cities that really has the market on dark beer, and a smokey beer as well. While good for what they are...They certainly have not fused the two together nearly as well as Cold Spring Brewing has.

I have taken a bottle from the fridge and let it rest for about 12-15 minutes before I opened and poured. The reason I only gave a 4 on appearance was the lack of a thick dark rich foamy head on the beer. Now, I may be assuming what it should pour and look like, but I would love a creamy thicker foam.

Next the smell...No let down here at all. The beer promises bourbon barrel aged and its all there! Yet, compared to some others around its not sharp...In fact, its a pleasant mild experience that tends to linger on for a bit while you comment on this great experience. On the bottle in mentions bourbon barrel chips and I think that helps make this difference in aroma and taste! On your first through last sip, as the beer warms a bit you notice a slight change in taste, aroma and levels of flavor.

This brings up the taste...the real reason I have decided to put up a review. This beer was a gold medal winner many times over. I can see why.
If you decide to try something new and are reading these reviews...
Dark, Rich, Smooth, Amazing balance of oak, smoke and bourbon all come together in a fantastic beer!

12-03-2012 22:36:23 | More by jermarley
Photo of mkennedy119


3.25/5  rDev -12.4%

12-01-2012 22:43:20 | More by mkennedy119
Photo of OWSLEY069


3.15/5  rDev -15.1%

Pours a deep amber to black in color with a tan head. In the aroma, oaky and a small bourbon like presence. In the taste, oaky, notes of bourbon, a touch watery but decent. A small bite and a medium to lighter bodied mouthfeel, with a dry oak and small bourbon presence in the aftertaste. A bit thin and a touch watery, with a decent flavor. Not to shabby.

11-23-2012 16:38:54 | More by OWSLEY069
Photo of IPAchris


4.25/5  rDev +14.6%

11-19-2012 16:13:08 | More by IPAchris
Photo of Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.73/5  rDev +0.5%

A bourbon beer that wasn't bad, its like a black beer. Malts, including chocolate malts, made it pretty drinkable. aged just under a year. Black body, with a nice licorice spice.
Medium mouthfeel, and understated carbonation.Bottle from Flanders Ned.

11-18-2012 04:23:43 | More by Sammy
Photo of ChopsMeister


4/5  rDev +7.8%

11-17-2012 21:24:58 | More by ChopsMeister
Photo of sprucetip


3.75/5  rDev +1.1%

11-16-2012 22:38:38 | More by sprucetip
Photo of TheBigBoy


1.75/5  rDev -52.8%

11-12-2012 02:59:52 | More by TheBigBoy
Photo of cfalovo97

Ontario (Canada)

2/5  rDev -46.1%

11-06-2012 16:42:00 | More by cfalovo97
Photo of flagmantho


4/5  rDev +7.8%

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: murky, extremely dark brown hue with a one-finger cap of frothy tan foam. Dark for a beer of the style, but I like it.

Smell: rich, roasty aroma with a nice dark fruit component of plum and date, along with a hint of raspberry and cherry. Reminds me of a dubbel or quadrupel; good stuff.

Taste: chocolatey, roasty and a little bit fruity. There's not a lot of dynamism in the flavor here, but the first wallop is pretty attractive to me.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied with a good carbonation and a nice, smooth, silky creaminess. Good.

Overall: I quite like this beer. I'm rating it a lot higher than other reviewers, but despite its provenance (Cold Spring isn't necessarily a strong-ale powerhouse), this beer has a lot of good flavor and a smooth drinkability. Good on ya, Cold Spring!

11-05-2012 07:12:47 | More by flagmantho
Photo of bonkers

New Jersey

3.25/5  rDev -12.4%

11-03-2012 22:07:40 | More by bonkers
John Henry 3 Lick Spiker Ale from Cold Spring Brewing Co.
84 out of 100 based on 368 ratings.