Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Blueberry Maple Stout
Saugatuck Brewing Company

Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Blueberry Maple StoutBourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Blueberry Maple Stout
Write a Review
Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
Style:
American Imperial Stout
Ranked #727
ABV:
9.5%
Score:
93
Ranked #3,612
Avg:
4.21 | pDev: 8.31%
Reviews:
22
Ratings:
72
From:
Saugatuck Brewing Company
 
Michigan, United States
Avail:
Rotating
Wants
  5
Gots
  14
SCORE
93
Outstanding
Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Blueberry Maple StoutBourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Blueberry Maple Stout
Notes:
Reviews: 22 | Ratings: 72
Photo of beerloserLI
4.57/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A pure black color on the pour with a fast and almost non existent head. The nose is very nice and has a really genuine blueberry pancake smell. The blueberry is very sharp and I can't stop sniffing it. Lots of slick and smooth chocolate malts hit upfront on the initial few sips. That sharp blueberry note carries right over from the nose and hits with a sweet and tart berry flavor. The barrel shows itself but seems to be very well balanced. Additional notes of maple syrup, coffee, brown sugar, vanilla, pancake batter, molasses, and dark candied fruits. The mouth feel is full bodied but still very drinkable and I barely notice the abv. Very lush, silky smooth, and with some good palate stick to it.

Overall, this is just delicious. Some might find it too sweet but I just love the sweet and tart blueberry flavor. This is pretty much a liquid blueberry pancake in a bottle.

 884 characters

Photo of ovaltine
4.33/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours black, tan head, some leakage to mahogany on the edges, but still a beautiful beer. The barrel is prominent on the nose, but the blueberry and maple are not shrinking violets in the least - there’s a lot going on here.

The barrel is present on the taste, but the blueberry wins all the awards on the taste - it allows the maple to strut around a bit, but there is no question about the star of this production. It is the sweet , slightly tart blueberry.

The mouthfeel is a little softer than I’d like to see with a 9.5% ABV beer, but that’s only a slight demerit, because this is outstanding, IMHO.

 614 characters

Photo of stortore
4.15/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into a tulip snifter. 2018 edition, had 10/4/18.

Pours a mostly opaque dark brown, with no real head and some soapy lacing. Aromas of roasted malt, chocolate, maple- more as it warms, some blueberries, some toffee, light bourbon, light oak. The taste pretty much follows along, with more bourbon and blueberries than the nose, malt, chocolate, maple, some vanilla and caramel, light oak. Smooth, a good full body, well carbonated.

The maple is the star here, with the blueberries also showing well. The bourbon really adds to base beer in the flavor, not so much in the aroma. Enjoyable and fun to drink.

 628 characters

Photo of Seanhillmusiccleaner
4.55/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Not as good as their BA Neapolitan stout, but good. Both the maple and blueberry become a little overwhelming. Could use more heat, more bourbon, little less sweet. For the price I think I prefer the non BA version.

 215 characters

Photo of woodychandler
4.16/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of the hidden bennies to being a day-to-day substitute teacher is that I frequently frequent just about every quadrant of the city on a routine basis. It is when I am on the west end that I take the opportunity to drop in at Dominion Pizza on Columbia Avenue to see what's doing. Today was no exception & I was elated to find yet another beer from Saugatuck BC that I have not yet reviewed. Cool!

From the Bottle: "Please Note: All of our beers, including this one, are intended to be consumed fresh. We guarantee our beers for 6 months from package date. Cellar at your own risk."; "25 IBUs".

This one is the 2019 vintage with a date of "PKGD 011619" so just over a month old! I Pop!ped the cap & began a C-Line pour into the awaiting glass. It was kind enough to perform a pseudo-cascade that settled into just under two fingers of dense, foamy, rocky, deep-tan/light-brown head with good retention, leaving great lacing in its wake. Color was Black/Opaque (SRM = 44), allowing ZERO light penetration. Nose was definitely blueberry & pancakes, but with a sharpness, like blueberry syrup on buckwheat pancakes. That was a favorite of mine at The Best Breakfast (5141 S Saviers Road Oxnard, CA 93033) while I lived at 700 Pleasant Valley Road, just down the street. Ah, memories. Blueberries are my second fave, just behind strawberries, but strawberry syrup on those pancakes just did not mesh well. Mouthfeel was medium-to-full, a little weak for the style. The taste was definitely of blueberry, but that should not be misconstrued as "sweet". Instead, it had a tweak to it that might have been from the barrel, could have been from the bourbon, I cannot put my finger on it, but it was there. Finish was semi-sweet, very much of the blueberries with a bready/pancake maltiness. It was a nice addition/find from Saugatuck, IMHO. YMMV.

 1,844 characters

Photo of Stevedore
4.16/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, snifter glass. Dark black body, fairly opaque, one finger offwhite head, good retention, no lacing. Smell is big blueberry, light maple sweetness, a decent bit of bourbon sweetness and a touch of char, milk chocolate. This is undoubtedly sweet. Flavour follows, a nice combination of the advertised flavours, milk chocolate, bourbon, light maple, big blueberry fruit sweetness. No tartness. Medium-fuller bodied, appropriately carbonated, sweet blueberries on the finish.

 484 characters

Photo of Frus77
4.59/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Fantastic. The blueberry was very strong, but not overpowering. It certainly did smell like blueberry pancakes. Maple was a bit harder to detect though. The bourbon was very present, but again, not overpowering nor was it too hot and boozy. For me, it was the perfect balance between sweet and heavy. I also think that it being in 12oz bottles helps. As much as I loved it, there's no way I could finish a whole bomber or 750 of it.

But still, I would certainly go out of your way to at least get one of these. Considering I bought this for $5 a bottle, it was well worth it.

 577 characters

Photo of DavidR_9
4.07/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Black to super dark amber body, Tan khaki head that lingers around the rim. Smell at first wasn’t strong but as it warms, big blueberry muffin, maple donuts, and chocolate notes comethrough with some dark roast, oakiness, and slightly bourbon heat. Taste follows the nose with sweetness upfront, lots of blueberry and then a maple frosting kind of flavor (not quite maple syrup to me), only alittle bit of roasty bitterness and pretty well hidden 9.5abv heat. Mouthfeel is nice, medium to high thick, chewy, and carbonation tingle disappears fairly quick.
Overall this beer is SWEET and chewy. Definitely sweet decadent breakfast in a glass. It would be more drinkable if there were more roastiness and oak with less blueberry/maple onslaught. Anyways, the beer certainly lived up to its name and expectation.

 812 characters

Photo of Lahey
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Inky black with a decent sized khaki head, this beer promises maple and blueberry in the name and the smell.

The flavor is like pouring a shot of whiskey and a shot of blueberry maple syrup into a very small cup of coffee. It's a little sweet and over the top for me, but it comes through on what it says it is. It's not notes of this and that. It's maple syrup and blueberries.

Mouthfeel is full and a tiny bit cloying.

Overall not a bad beer, but not one I'd buy a 4 pack of again. I'd grab a single for when I got a sweet tooth though.

 543 characters

Photo of zeff80
4.24/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap. Poured an opaque, jet-black color with a small, light brown head of foam. It smelled of bourbon, oak, vanilla, maple and toffee. Great bourbon taste with maple, toffee and caramel. Not much blueberry comes through.

 222 characters

Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
4.29/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

If there's two things Michigan loves beer-wise, it's their stouts and their blueberries. This was sent over graciously to me by superspak. a 2018 issue, said to enjoy within 6 months - I think I'm good here.

A violent pour into a snifter yields a dark coffee color with a steady, firm creamy ring of beige-red. It sticks to the sides of the glass, and leaves a few alcohol legs as well.

Aroma yields antiseptic blueberry paired with chunky chocolate, some caramel, slight tin, chocolate chip cookies, pancake batter, and faint woody maple syrup.

The flavor is like crispy chocolate chip pancake edges, blueberry syrup, bourbon maple, stick margarine, caramel, and coffee. The only flavors that detract from this delicious breakfast in a bottle would be the dirty earthy sock notes hanging around weaving in and out of the pancake'd profile.

Feel is creamy and dry - like a coffee with shots of milk. The booze heat does creep up a bit but it's very well hidden, you don't feel it till it's in your gut. A sticky residue remains on the lips and the cheeks are set on fire with lasting carbonation and bourbon stickiness.

Overall, a very very tasty stout. Whether I'd prefer to have this over the regular is something I haven't decided yet. I suppose it's a lot like FBS and KBS. If you're feeling bourbon, you'll grab a KBS. If you're not, FBS will do the trick perfectly. That's about where I'm at with the Saugatuck Blueberry Maple Stout. Worth a try.

 1,463 characters

Photo of TreyIsWilson
4.24/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Pours pitch black with a very thin tan head. Nice amount of soapy lacing.

S - Aroma is blueberry, maple and bourbon.

T - The taste is blueberry, maple, dark chocolate, vanilla, oak and bourbon.

M - Medium bodied with medium carbonation. Creamy mouthfeel with a sticky finish.

O - Very nice fruited stout. The flavors are rich and balanced. Deceptively easy drinking for being 9.5%.

 389 characters

Photo of colts9016
4.34/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I received this beer from a recent BIF, thank you very much. I have never heard of this brewery, but I am excited to try this beer. The beer is 52 degrees and served in a tulip glass. A hard pour produced a one finger dark tan head. The head is airy and foamy with poor retention. The head left zero lacing and a light tan ring around the beer. The color of the beer is SRM 37 dark brown/black. The clarity of the beer is opaque. Not much else is discernable the beer is dark and inky.

I get the berry and bourbon barrel notes on the initial aroma. Additional aromas in the beer are oak, bready, toffee, chocolate, caramel, maple, burnt sugars, dark roasted malts, yeast, molasses, vanilla, and alcohol.

The initial flavor of the beer is a bourbon maple syrup pancake in a beer. Oak, toffee, caramel, chocolate, maple, molasses, char, bready, yeast, vanilla, and earthiness in the beer.

The mouthfeel of the beer is coating and rich.
The body of the beer is full, medium carbonation, and full finish.
I would have loved to seen a chewier mouthfeel in the beer. The beer is a little thin for me. The beer is flavorful and balanced.

 1,145 characters

Photo of LloydDobler
4.31/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Basically it tastes like a short stack coverd in blueberry maple-bourbon syrup. It’s pretty sweet, but I was expecting that up front. Nose is delightfully similar to the taste, but it’s just a tad too sweet. Slick and dark as hell. Really good, but I was hoping for more.

 276 characters

Photo of NathanBeets
4.31/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours deep black, minimal head and some decent lacing.

Aroma is bursting with blueberries, along with some barrel character (vanilla, bourbon), maple is prominent, some chocolate to finish.

Taste is one of a kind. The adjuncts combine so well, the barrel rounds them out.

Consume cold. Consume fresh.

Mouth feel is lacking a bit. Otherwise great brew!

 359 characters

Photo of darktronica
4.33/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours black and thick with minimal head. The aroma is thick and all-consuming, blueberries, maple, and barrel oak. I am strongly reminded of the blueberry syrup at old-school IHOPs, but in a positive sense, not as being overly sweet. The palate, however, is where it starts to verge on cloying. It doesn't cross the line for me, but it definitely will for some. This is bold, unapologetic, and really well-executed for what it is trying to be.

 443 characters

Photo of superspak
4.35/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into snifter, 2018 vintage bottling. Pours opaque dark brown/black color with a small fairly dense khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a thin spotty lace cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big milk/dark chocolate, cocoa, caramel, maple syrup, brown sugar, vanilla, toffee, fudge, lightly tart blueberries, bourbon, toasted oak, and bread dough; with light notes of coconut, marshmallow, molasses, raisins, and roast/toast/oaky earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of dark/roast/bready malts, blueberries, maple syrup, and bourbon barrel notes; with great strength. Taste of huge milk/dark chocolate, cocoa, caramel, maple syrup, brown sugar, vanilla, toffee, fudge, lightly tart blueberries, bourbon, toasted oak, and bread dough; with light notes of coconut, marshmallow, molasses, raisins, and roast/toast/oaky earthiness. Very mild roast bitterness and bourbon/oak tannin spiciness on the finish. Lingering notes of milk/dark chocolate, cocoa, caramel, maple syrup, brown sugar, vanilla, toffee, fudge, blueberries, bourbon, toasted oak, bread dough, light coconut/marshmallow, roast/toast/oaky earthiness on the finish for a while. Incredible complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roast/bready malts, blueberries, maple syrup, and bourbon barrel flavors; with a solid roasted bitter/sweet and bourbon/oak spiciness balance; with zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Mild carbonation and fairly full body; with a very smooth, creamy, silky, and velvety mouthfeel that is fantastic. Slightly slick/syrupy. Zero chalky roast, oak tannins, or dryness. Minimal warming alcohol for 9.5%, with zero barrel booziness lingering after the finish. Overall this is an amazing BBA fruited/dessert imperial stout! All around incredible complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roast/bready malts, blueberries, maple syrup, and bourbon barrel flavors; very smooth and dangerously easy to sip on for the big ABV. Very rich and complex, perfect barrel integration, and not overwhelming on blueberries. A highly enjoyable offering.

 2,163 characters

Photo of GuyFawkes
3.75/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottled 1/9/18; drank 2/6/18 @ the Yarchives.

Black appearance.

A violent pour yielded a small tan head; decent lace.

Oops-all-berries, blueberry syrup & faint bourbon notes in the nose.

Thick, sticky mouthfeel.

Oops-all-berries, blueberry syrup, sticky maple & faint bourbon flavors.

SWEET as all get-out; drinkable, but this is a barrel-aged stout as envisioned by a little kid. No balance; too sweet.

 415 characters

Photo of REVZEB
4.69/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Had on tap. Wow this might be the perfect blueberry stout. It is very present, and loudly conveys the bourbon, maple, vanilla, and malt as well. It knows what it is and it does it well. Smell and taste are clones. Could use more in the body, but still has plenty to offer. Fantastic work

 292 characters

Photo of Masonz223
4.48/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Smell: Initially I'm really impressed with the strong barrel presence. There is a good amount of boozy bourbon, toasted oak, vanilla, and coconut. Underneath the barrel you get these delightful blueberry and syrup notes. The syrup note is a bit artificial and is kind hard to distinct that it's maple syrup and not just regular syrup. The mix of blueberry and syrup reminds me a lot of a warm blueberry muffin with syrup, due in large part to this doughy muffin batter note I'm getting. You also get a nice dark chocolate presence underneath all the barrel and adjuncts.

Taste: Ok the beer really follows the nose on the palate. Right upfront I'm hit with this fluffy vanilla note along with hints of coconut and dark chocolate. In the mid palate is where I get the blueberry and syrup. Just like on the nose the flavor is really reminiscent of warm blueberry muffins with syrup drizzled on. There's a muffin batter doughiness that really brings together the two adjuncts . Although again like on the nose the syrup note is a bit artificial and is hard to make it out to be maple syrup and not just regular pancake syrup. Also in the mid plate you start to taste some of that boozy bourbon that is present into the finish. In the finish you get a delightful barrel presence. Toasted oak, more vanilla and a warm bourbon booziness. The bourbon is noticeable and gives you a friendly warming sensation. The barrel notes mix with the sticky syrup and blueberry notes to give a really delicious and pleasant aftertaste.

Feel: This is definitely the weakest part of the beer. It's has a medium body, but it's on the lighter side of medium. Moderate carbonation with some stickiness on the lips. But with all the bourbon coming through on the palette the beer could really benefit from a fuller more chewy mouthfeel. The bourbon makes the beer feel like a bigger beer then 9.5%. But the mouthfeel doesn't. It's a small critique because the reset of the beer is done so well. I just feel a fuller mouthfeel would of put this beer over the top. Like I said it's a minor flaw though.

Overall: I'm really impressed that this beer has such a forward barrel presence. These Barrel Aged Blueberry stouts seem to really lose the barrel character and it's hard to tell they were even in a barrel. This beer it's really noticeable it spent time in a barrel. This beer has way more of a Barrel presence then Northwoods and that has way more hype then this. Which is a testament to how well this beer is made. To have more Barrel character in your beer then goose island does in a Bourbon County variant is extremely impressive. Next to Imperial Neapolitan Stout this is by far the second best beer I've had from them. Admittedly I'm not a fan of Saugatuck Brewing, but this beer has me excited for what might be coming next out of there barrel aging program. This is really well made and people should seek this out if there fans of this style of beer!

 2,940 characters

Photo of beerguy04
4.79/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pours a coffee black with a small khaki colored head. Smell is of blueberry and a faint smell of booze. Taste is the same. Reminds me of blueberry pancakes. Has a syrupy aftertaste.Mouthfeel is medium. You can chew the beer. Overall, a great breakfast beer.

 257 characters

Photo of strohme2
4.41/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep brown with small, quick receding head. Smell is great. Maple and blueberries. That's about it. Taste is where this shines. Chocolate, fresh blueberries, maple syrup, biscuity malts and hint of cinnamon. The body is medium and chewy, especially for a 6% beer. Love this.

 274 characters

Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Blueberry Maple Stout from Saugatuck Brewing Company
Beer rating: 93 out of 100 with 72 ratings