Homewood Reserve | East End Brewing Company

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Homewood ReserveHomewood Reserve

Brewed by:
East End Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by treyrab on 12-23-2008

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Ratings: 113 |  Reviews: 64
Photo of sonicdescent
5/5  rDev +39.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours..good god this is a thick one. Looks like motor oil with a caramel colored head that lasts a while, leaving a thick coating as it goes away. If there's carbon bubbles in there, I can't tell as it is something that eats light for breakfast.

Smells damn good as well, big hints of chocolate, caramel, and a robust coffee scent with a light cream. It's not terribly complex but it is strong, and gave me a difficult time writing notes because it made me want to drink right away.

Taste is good, at first you get the wood, then the flavors of the black strap (caramel malt), and a nice chocolate aftertaste. This is excellent stuff.

Mouthfeel is superb. Thick as hell and very light on the carbonation. This is the mouth coating feeling I want from a stout.

Drinkability is high. Yet another big bottle from East End that I will likely finish in one setting. If they still have any left next time I am down there, I will get more.

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Photo of Griggsy
4.75/5  rDev +32.7%

Photo of mikesgroove
4.53/5  rDev +26.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I was very, very pleased to recieve this one in a recent BIF. I had been wanting to cross off a couple of the East End beers for a while now, and this 1 liter swing top was the next notch in the belt. Served at cellar temp and pour into a snifter, I nursed this bottle all night on 05/23/2009.

The pour was the thing dreams are made of. Huge pop on the bottle led to a thick black pour. A large three inch head of chocolate just exploded across the top of the glass throughout the session, really just showing off how good a stout can look. I could not imagine this beer looking any better right off the bat. Lots of roasted malts, coffee notes and hints of resionous hops in the aroma. Even as it warmed the hop notes were still very easy to pick up and really gave it some nice life and balance against the back drop of the coffee. It took awhile for me to find any evidence that this one had barrel aging in it, but after about ten minutes or so it really started to display some nice touches of whiskey flavor that came out especially in the finish. Very well balanced with a deep coffee flavor and smooth, roasted malts. Very drinkable as the ABV was not too high and it was not too heavy that it kept me from polishing off the bottle.

Overall for a regular stout I thought this was outstanding. It was a nice change from the big ABV RIS that we are all used to. Very subtle, very soft, very well done. I could drink this one all day/

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.5/5  rDev +25.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours jet black with a tan head. In the aroma, bourbon, molasses, and oak. In the taste, chocolate, dry coffee, and bourbon notes. A smooth and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a semi dry, bourbon and coffee aftertaste. Big nose and flavor, but kind of thin.

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Photo of CP20
4.5/5  rDev +25.7%

Photo of schroederm
4.41/5  rDev +23.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

In a tulip:

Two fingers of sticky soapy chocolate head form over a deep brown body. Very attractive beer. Aromas include lots of roasty coffee and chocolate. A lot of coffee, with some bitter chocolate and a bunch of bourbon in the taste. It's a bit hot, which is strange considering its modest ABV. A bit of molasses in there as well. The mouthfeel is thick and creamy with decent carbonation. This beer is so delicious. Still drinkable regardless of its roasty bitterness.

Overall: My first East End, and I can't wait to try more. This is an excellent Stout.

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Photo of barleywinebrewer
4.33/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

huge thanks to johntravolta21 for the chance to try this neat brew!

A - pitch black with a billowy dark tan head.
S - roasted grains, smokey woods, hint of astringency
T - roasted grains / espresso / dark chocolate blended with a solid wood and blackstrap influence. There's a hint of hops but I think it is overwhelmed and oddly buoys the roasted aspect of this beer.
M - medium bodied, creamy smooth with a lingering bitter roast note.
D - low enough abv to be sessionable, deep enough in character to carry a high level of roast and make it worthwhile to enjoy a few pints.

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Photo of Hojaminbag
4.33/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very dark brown to black body with a large brown head. Pretty good retention, the brown hue of the beer will basically stain the bottom of your glass. Leaves great lacing. Thick and very regular, sticky.

Oak is pretty noticeable in the smell with just a touch of whiskey. Some roasted and chocolatey aromas come through as well.

Up front there is a good roasted flavor that couples with some fainter chocolate malts. The most noticeable flavor in this one is definitely oak. A great woody flavor with notes of vanilla. Only a touch of Bourbon or whiskey comes through at first, but the warmer this gets the more noticeable the liquor flavors become. At about room temperature, the Oak and Whiskey become about even in power and the roasted, sweet malts die down a little bit. In the tail end of the drink I swear there is a touch of hops, but it doesn't last long if it's there at all. Very nice.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, pretty light for a stout. Low carbonation and a very dry finish.

Great drinkability. Not heavy or overly sweet, a good balance of malt, whiskey and oak.

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Photo of jmartinger
4.32/5  rDev +20.7%

Photo of hopdog
4.28/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

1 liter flip top bottle.

Poured a dark black color with a larger sized tan head. Aromas of wood, vanilla, earthy, and some coffee. Tastes of wood, roast, lighter chocolate, dark fruits, earthy, and vanilla. I was getting the woody and vanilla, but the bourbon was almost non-existent. Lightly thin body but nice and smooth. Light lacing left on the glass.

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Photo of trygelski1
4.28/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2014 22oz bomber poured into a tulip glass:

Look: An amazing dark black with even an amazing dark brown head of about an inch or so. One of the darkest brown heads I have ever seen.

Smell: Notes of bourbon along with chocolate, coffee, and roast/smokey

Taste: Very roasty and chocolatey with small notes of bourbon

Feel: Medium body

Overall: Another solid offering from the East End crew! Wish this had just a bit more of the bourbon coming through to take the solid Black Strap Stout to the next level. Haven't had many of this style to compare this one to. I will revisit this one every year when the new bombers come out.

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Photo of treyrab
4.28/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Went to the release today and got this poured into a pint glass. I've been waiting on this for a while, so here goes...

A: Pours a deep black as night body with a deep brown mocha head that lasts quite a while. Some solid lacing and when I was finished, the bottom of the glass was still filled with the deep brown mocha that was once the head. Great look.

S: Smell is up front very bitter roast with some chocolate and cocoa. The oak is prevalent in this one when compared to the original and the bourbon smell sneaks up from nowhere and is faint, but noticeable.

T: Very, very smooth and it starts with a nice bitter roast. The oak comes in and plays well with the bitter chocolate and slight bourbon notes. The bourbon is there, but only slightly, with the oak being most noticeable.

Overall, I was very pleased with this one. The bourbon is very light, might have wanted a little bit more, but the oak is great.

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Photo of t0rin0
4.25/5  rDev +18.7%

Photo of mbrasi
4.25/5  rDev +18.7%

Photo of DrJay
4.21/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

1L flip top. Black, no noticeable edges. A hard pour produced a thick, one inch cap of dark brown foam. Excellent head retention with lots of lacing. Looks great. Dark chocolate aroma up front, then malted milk and smoke, nutty and very roasted. Bitterness was solid throughout, from a combination of hops and the dark, bitter malts. Heavy on the roast with a little wood and chocolate smoothing things out, flashes of dark fruits towards the end along with a trace of vanilla. The body was more medium than full, but the fine carbonation gave it a heavier, palate coating texture. Some dry astringency from the wood and dark grains. Smooth and delicious.

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Photo of MasterSki
4.21/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Dave (d0b) for busting this out for NBS Super Bowl edition. Served in a pint glass.

Disclaimer - I'm not a huge fan of non-infused (i.e. gimmicks like coffee, chocolate, vanilla, etc.) single stouts. I generally dislike the bitter dry taste without strong complementary flavors. With that in mind, here we go!

A - This is the best looking stout I've seen in a long time. Huge red-tinged mocha head with great retention and lacing. Pitch black with only the slightest hint of red at the edges of the glass. I felt guilty disturbing it's photogenic beauty.

S - Dry and creamy to start, but the barrel-aging really comes alive as it warms up. Not a huge smell in the end - somewhat subtle and understated, requiring me to get in close to really get the bourbon, caramel, and oak notes.

T - Imagine a fresh bomber of Cadillac Mtn, but with barrel-aging, and you wouldn't be far off the mark. Bitter coffee, cream, oak, bourbon. Apparently the beer is made with brown sugar & molasses, but I don't get those flavors in huge amounts.

M - Creamy and smooth, medium body that you'd expect from a lower-gravity stout. Mild carbonation is refreshing in this case. Not much residual stickiness at all.

D - This is one incredibly smooth and easy drinking stout, with a nice oak bite to it that isn't overwhelming or distracting. It's also not overly boozy for a barrel-aged beer, which makes the 1L swing-top bottle a manageable serving size.

While I may never find myself dying for a lighter ABV stout, this has gone a long way to showing how good this genre can get. Looking forward to the other East End goodies that are heading my way.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4.2/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This made a quick draft appearance last week at Bocktown...poured with a moccha tan head and pitch black body, some thin speckled tan head left on the sides of the chalice but carbonation as a whole seems pretty mellow. Aroma has tart fruit think a touch of cherry, dark bitter chocolate, roasted malts add a layer of earthy/tree bark infused coffee. Bourbon barrel effects of aging give it a bit of booze and fusel alcohol that burns the nares. Flavor again I have to report the hint of tart cherry with vanilla charred oak, along with caramel roasted coffee and bitter dark chocolate. When I'm detecting as the caramel note I'm sure is coming from the Blackstrap molasses additions to the base beer Blackstrap Stout. It really comes off like an oak chip aged brash fruity coffee beer. However no coffee or cherries were harmed in the making of this beer. Mouthfeel is warming to say the least, with some barrel aged notes going on oak barrel and the vanilla stick around on the palate and do outweigh the base beer. Low rolling carbonation medium bodied with a bit of stickiness/fusel alcohol left on the palate between sips. Overall impression is that they should also do an imperial stout to throw in the oak because Black Strap is excellent on it's on withint this context however I find it to be overshadowed by the effects of oak aging rather that surpassing it to another level.

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Photo of BeerTruth
4.18/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this one from JohnTravolta21, gracias!

1 Quart 1.8 Fluid Ounce flip top bottle poured into a nonic. Small Batch 2009.

Pours an absolute black with no light coming through what-so-ever. A two finger brownish colored head slowly falls leaving a good amount of stick on the sides of the glass. First whiff I get some toasted oats, milk chocolate, and a touch of bourbon. Metallic notes with some smokey malts and caramel tickle the nose as well. Taste starts with strong roasted grains, gritty oak, and cocoa nibs. Midway the metallic notes emerge again but this time on the tongue with a touch of burnt coffee. Aftertaste is where the very mild bourbon appears and lingers for a bit on the tongue. Medium body with a soft and creamy feel. A tame carbonation which fits very well with the overall mouthfeel of this beer, nicey. Very drinkable which is good seeing I have a massive bottle to polish off myself, shouldn't be a problem though! Thanks again Sara :)

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.15/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured black with a tan head that was nice and thick to start. Good deep color- looks substantial. Deep, rich chocolate aromas and some graininess as well as very slightly tart vinous character. The taste loses the vinous character and instead you get a lot of ash. Extremely ashy, but some of the deep chocolate remains. In the direction of Abyss, but with even more char. Smooth but a tad light as far as the mouthfeel goes. Pretty decent, but this doesn'tt nail the style for me although I'm sure it appeals to a certain palate.

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Photo of AdamBear
4.13/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2011 poured from the flip-top growler

A-pours like black motor oil but with decent bubbly dark tan head

S-bourbon, dark roasted grains, and oreos. medium strength

T-comes in with a sweet and syrupy taste of dark roasted grains aaand bourbon. it is a good and clear taste. its also fairly creamy with a hint of dark fruits. the after-taste is matching with some more definition to it

M-medium carbonation with a creamy finish

O-the lowest alcohol bourbon aged stout i've had. i like it a lot, though not as much as the blackstrap stout. the whole growler will make for a good night though a bomber might make more sense. its easy drinking and seems to improve as the night goes on and it tastes better as it warms up.

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Photo of IronCitySteve
4.12/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a bottle after a nice sample at the festival of darkness. 2010 Release

A: Pours a dark black color with no light coming through. Provides a thick brown head with good retention. Some spotty lacing.

S: There are strong bourbon and roasted espresso scents hitting the nose first and foremost. Some dark chocolate and toffee come through as it warms.

T: The bourbon flavor hits the palate and lasts throughout the whole tasting. There is some burnt wood flavors, roasted espresso and even some dark chocolate that are recognizable as it warms.

M: A nice medium to full bodied beer that leaves a slighy alcohol taste on the palate.

D: I love bourbon and for me now that I am 'mature', I sip my bourbon. The same is true for this brew. It goes down smooth but this is certainly a sipper.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
4.07/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. 1L swingtop shared with a buddy. 2010 vintage.

4.0 A: Pours a viscous black color. I had trouble coaxing a good head formation. I ended up with a finger of fairly dense, creamy light brown head with decent retention and a good ring of lacing.

4.5 S: Blackstrap molasses, brown sugar, dark roast coffee, and a touch of chocolate. Bourbon plays a complementary role offering light leather and vanilla contributions. There's more oakiness than bourbon. Pretty good here and definitely an improvement on the base beer.

4.0 T: Bourbon is a bit more evident in the taste, but again plays a complementary role. Blackstrap molasses, coffee, dark chocolate, roasted barley, and a touch of ash. Leather, vanilla, and melon from the bourbon and again a strong oakiness. Very light lactose-like sweetness.

3.5 M: Lighter medium body. This could use a bit more carbonation and a higher mash temp. Reasonably creamy for how light the body is and smooth.

4.0 D: An improvement on the base beer, but maybe not by enough to justify the price tag. Still, definitely worth a try and I'll probably pick up a few more to age. Goes down really easily due to it not being a massive imperial.

As an aside, I had the 09 version earlier this year and it was abominable. Full of tannic astrigency and overly ashy. I'm pleased to see that this year's vintage is very much improved.

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Photo of PittBeerGirl
4.04/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Review moved from its original location. Batch #1 from Halloween 2008 Reviewed 10/31/08. No bottles from this release.

A- This is a great cask conditioned ale so naturally it had the perfect appearance for its style. Body is an opaque jet black with a billowing frothy dark brown head. Head eventually settles to 1 finger, has perfect retention, and leaves lacing all the way down the glass.

S- Mild smell of dark chocolate malt, oak, and a bit of roasted bitterness. Decent-but not the strength of this brew.

T- Very malty. Roasted chocolate malt and some coffee tones come through first with a big accent of oak flavors. The flavors intensify for the finish with a hint of bourbon sweetness. Hints of roasted malt linger on the palate.

M-Mouthfeel is wonderful on this one. Low carbonation and heavy, yet eversmooth body.

D- This is a great beer-especially considering that its just a test run. I would have liked a bit more bourbon presence, but the oak is definitely there and that's great. No hop presence this one (as compared to the regular,while fresh) but definitely much smoother. Looking forward to a new batch of this in the future (and the growler I bought to split with my dad-blackstrap is his favorite beer on earth...so I had to get one for him).

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Photo of akorsak
4.03/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The 2010 vintage is still Blackstrap but there is just enough bourbon to make a difference. The flavor is sweet and full enough to move the taste up to a 4.0. There is no indication of any of the off-flavors that other reviewers are mentioning.


Thanks to egledhill for picking this 1L swingtop up for me last fall.

A: The stout is a beautiful sight in my snifter. A pitch black, oily body is a singularity, absorbing anything and everything that comes near it. Atop the stout is a tan colored, foamy head that slowly receded to a thin band.

S: The blackstrap hasn't disappeared behind the bourbon. Syrupy, burnt molasses aromas are strong, mixing with dark chocolate. The bourbon hasn't added anything to the nose.

T: Not much bourbon to be found here. The blackstrap remains as intense as ever, dark and intense. Charred bread and burnt sugars are atrong, dominating the taste. A touch of smoke comes out near the end. There is a light metallic flavor but it is generally hidden by the full stout flavors. Sorry though, no bourbon in this one's taste and that's gonna cost it.

M: The ale has all of the qualities of blackstrap without the promised barrel aging. A little disappoinring.

D: Blackstrap is an excellent stout, I just would have liked some bourbon with it.

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Photo of emerge077
4.03/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Generously shared by Jay23 in the company of a couple Homewood, IL natives.
Review from notes.

Black with a finger of tan mocha foam, a squiggled line of lace is left inside the glass, with little random flecks here and there. Foam lasts, and is visually attractive. Cocoa, unsweetened chocolate in the nose with a woody undercurrent. More charred baker's chocolate in the taste, blended with the oak gives it a savory pipe tobacco impression. Feel is dry with the oak figuring big in the aftertaste. Easy to drink, fairly medium bodied and thankfully not a giant stout monster of RIS proportions.

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Homewood Reserve from East End Brewing Company
3.58 out of 5 based on 113 ratings.
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