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Bourbon Barrel Aged Winter Warmer - Rahr & Sons Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Bourbon Barrel Aged Winter WarmerBourbon Barrel Aged Winter Warmer

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
91
outstanding

344 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 344
Reviews: 104
rAvg: 4.1
pDev: 13.41%
Wants: 83
Gots: 110 | FT: 8
Brewed by:
Rahr & Sons Brewing Company visit their website
Texas, United States

Style | ABV
Winter Warmer |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Bitterbill on 05-28-2008

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 344 | Reviews: 104 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of spiff0677
4.37/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2011 vintage into a wide mug. At the bosses house so no globe or snifter.

Appearance - Nice deep colored pour with a good half inch of head. Not much lacing but reatined a nice evan layer of foam through the most of the glass. Darker color than I expected with deep cherry red and brown shades around the edges.

Smell - Good bit of vanilla and bourbon. Followed by cherry and pistacio salad. Took me a second to place that old familiar smell(pistacio salad) in the foam. As the head died down I got a bit of grassy hops.

Taste - For the most part follows the nose. Vanilla, bourban, and a bit of cherry. The hops is still a bit fresh leaving a mild sharpness.

Mouthfell - Medium bodied. I bit unbalanced with the hops but it just needs a 6 months or so to mellow. Nice creamy feel up front with a midly sharp finish.

Overall - A damn fine beer! Cant wait to try one in another 6 months. One of my favorite styles that seems to fit somewhere in between a big red, big brown, and porter. The bourban and vanilla really add to this beer. I was worried that the bourban would dominate the flavor but it didn't at all.

Photo of Daveychu
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of rsawyer
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of drummermattie02
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of duff247
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%

Photo of txgoat
5/5  rDev +22%

Photo of TXhomebrewer
3/5  rDev -26.8%

Photo of coldriver
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of Otisimaas
5/5  rDev +22%

Photo of Exiled
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%

Photo of gtermi
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a very dark redish brown with a head that hardly exists. The head doesnt even cover the whole beer and leaves around the glass of the beer.

S: The smell is outstanding. It has a lot of chocolate, coffee, caramel and malt.

T: To me this is one of the best winter warmers I have ever had. The beer has a lot of chocolate and coffee flavors. Has a strong sweetness and a little whiskey flavor. Just a great combo.

M: The beer is very smooth and gives you a nice warm feeling. It is very drinkable and has a slight crispness.

O: This is a very great beer, by far the best one that Rahr makes (IMO). I am aging a bottle and cant wait to see how this beer tastes in a year.

Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of pleaseletmein
4.89/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Out of the bottle a very dark brown pour. Not much lacing.
The bourbon barrel is well represented. Whiskey and wood are prominent.
Sweet and boozy at first. Warm and fulfilling after it rests.
Excellent mouth feel that keeps this sipping brew leaving me happy and content.
Overall, a fantastic Winter Warmer.

Photo of Heretic42
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of Vashtar
4.06/5  rDev -1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The appearance is daaark and seems clear.

The smell is pleasant and carries the typical toffee/caramel scent, but not as strongly as some extremely dark beers.

The taste is nice and simple. It's drinkable for a dark beer.

The mouth feel is smooth and thick, like thick saliva.

Overall, it's a good beer, but it's dark. I still prefer others when comparing it to 'winter beers.'

Photo of Texasfan549
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%

Photo of joshuacavett
5/5  rDev +22%

Photo of bentwookie
4/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of srandycarter
3.87/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Cola brown, not much head. Thin tan ring and spotty lace.

S - Deep malt. Nice. Candy aspects, and hint of booze.

T - Taste as smell, but spices added.

M - Good carb, good balance. Medium to light body.

D - Big flavors and ABV. Would tire easily.

Photo of nhindian
3.48/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle poured into a tulip. Bottle generously provided by Exiled, thanks Jason!

This is definitely an interesting concept, I can't really say I've heard of anyone barrel-aging a Winter Warmer.

A - Appears much darker than I was expecting, almost completely black with some cola-colored speckles throughout. A creamy, 2-fingered tan head melds flawlessly to contrast with the liquid, with decent retention. Lacing is solid as well, with thin curtains of foam.

S - Very interesting aroma on this beer. I am getting a lot of malts, spice, and fruits, without only a slight trace of the bourbon barrel here (and supposedly this batch is aged in Jim Beam barrels). The fruits are much stronger than anticipated, bringing cinnamon and raisins, almost to the point of a dubbel or quad.

T - Thankfully the taste is much more balanced than the nose. The whiskey actually plays a role here, and it is nicely integrated in my opinion. It's not exploding with the barrel, but it serves to accentuate the nuances. Conversely, the fruits are turned down here, making way for dark chocolate and slight coffee. Much more balanced. Throughout, a dry spiciness persists to work into the Winter Warmer style. I have to admit I wasn't a huge fan at first, but it definitely grew on me.

M - Mouthfeel is moderately light-bodied with decent carbonation. I have to admit, I thought this would feel a bit more full in the mouth. Finishes semi-dry and has a lingering aftertaste of whiskey, chocolate, and raisins.

D/O - Drinkability is moderate. I have to give Rahr credit for barrel-aging a style that doesn't really have a rich history of being put in barrels. That being said, although I received this beer more warmly after having a few sips, I'm still not completely sold. I feel the bourbon aspect is spot on, but it is still a bit too sweet with an overwhelming fruit presence. Enjoyable, but I could see this as being a beer I could only have once or twice a year.D

Photo of DarkAngel
4.82/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

When it's winter time and the cold wind is howling, and you are surrounded by good friends, there are only a few brews you can choose from if you want an epic one. This is one of them. This year's batch used Jim Beam barrels and it is wonderful. Strong, warming, and delicious. This brew is a must try and you'll find yourself saving some for aging, which I highly recommend.

Photo of TMoney2591
3.75/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Surly shaker pint glass.

Big thanks to jefferz5000 for this bottle!

Part two of the SwillFest 2011 after-party. It pours a cloudy garnet-sienna topped by over a finger of light tan foam. The nose comprises whiskey, balsa, cola, vanilla, toffee, light booze, buttery biscuits, and brown sugar. The taste holds notes of toffee, candi sugar, light brown sugar, light bourbon, and light oak. The body is a light medium, with a very light moderate carbonation and a lightly watery syrupy feel. Overall, a very solid brew, perhaps not as overtly flavorful as I expected, but enjoyable nonetheless (especially when compared to the horrendousness that preceded it).

Photo of mulder1010
4.12/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Have to thank jefferz5000 for this one. Much appreciated.
Bomber poured into a tulip

A-- Poured a dark cola color and settled a near black with touches of red at the top of the head. Short lived light brown head but better looking film I think. A dirty off white film. On swirling get one finger but quickly goes back to film. A couple of spots here and there but not a lot of any significant lacing.

S-- Crazy good nose. Got bourbon, vanilla, Oak, dark fruits (mostly raisin), and warm butterscotch. Very well balanced smell on this. Bourbon is quite soft but well done.

T-- Vanilla, raisin, butterscotch, oak and slight hints of bourbon. Solid tasting.

M-- Medium to low carbonation and medium bodied. A little spicy in the mid palate. Raisin, vanilla and bourbon dominated. Not very syrupy or sweet. Pick up the alcohol in the back of the mouth but just in fits of warmth and spiciness. A couple of thin gaps here and there, also a little bit of watery gaps. Both in mid palate. Also pick up some grape notes to this. Has some cola qualities to this.

O-- Traded for this for the fact I liked the idea of taking a winter warmer and putting it in a barrel. Very good idea. Very well done beer. Ticks the boxes of what a Winter Warmer is and the barrel adds a lot of complexity to this. Almost enhances the malts even more. Very cellar worthy and I think might have smoothed this out more as it is something like 7-8 months old now.

Photo of gnemesis
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into snifter on 04/25/2011.
The cool weather stuck around a bit longer than usual in Michigan so this made for a tasty treat.
Pours dark brown, almost black with a thick and creamy tan head. Good retention and decent lace throughout. This one smells of bourbon, hints of caramel, vanilla, dark fruits, raisin, and brown sugar... damn it smells good. The taste doesn't disappoint. Much of the same greatness with a touch of oak. The dark fruit flavors really come forward. This beer had a medium/full body with medium carbonation. One of my favorite winter-warmers yet! I'm hunting down more immediately.

Photo of jamescain
3.92/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a 10oz pint glass at Draught House

Appearance: Mahogany with an off white head that fades into a thin lacing on the top of the beer.

Aroma: Bourbon, vanilla, sweet malt, toffee, caramel, coffee and chocolate. Very complex aroma I’m very excited about the first taste.

Taste: Slight alcohol warming with a big bourbon taste, I think with a little time this would mellow out and be even more enjoyable. Sadly the taste did not live up to the nose. The flavors were hard to distinguish because of the strong bourbon flavor.

Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation and medium body. I was expecting more body, but I guess for a winter warmer this what you should expect. There was a slight alcohol warming sensation.

Overall: Good offering from Rahr, this being the first beer from them I have ever tried. If they make it again I want to pick up some bottles for the cellar next time.

Bourbon Barrel Aged Winter Warmer from Rahr & Sons Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 344 ratings.