Trip In The Woods: Barrel-Aged Maillard's Odyssey
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Trip In The Woods:  Barrel-Aged Maillard's OdysseyTrip In The Woods:  Barrel-Aged Maillard's Odyssey
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American Strong Ale
4.13 | pDev: 7.02%
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Trip In The Woods:  Barrel-Aged Maillard's OdysseyTrip In The Woods:  Barrel-Aged Maillard's Odyssey
Reviews: 22 | Ratings: 84 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by snaotheus:
Photo of snaotheus
3.92/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

750ml corked/caged bottle served in a large snifter. 090115 6 09?? is printed on the shoulder of the bottle.

Pours black with a small light tan head and lots of very fine carbonation. Smell is yeast and bourbon, vanilla and alcohol.

Taste is chocolatey, smokey bourbon flavor, definitely some vanilla again. Nice beer.

Mouthfeel is medium, gritty. Very nice bourbon barrel beer.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Zorro
4.35/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Deeply brown colored ale that is nearly black in color. Medium sized brown colored head.

Smells of vanilla and caramel candy. Scents of smoke and molasses. Candied fruit scents, pineapple, prune, and fruit cake. Nutty scent mostly toasted pecan. Scents of Kahlua, and Mocha coffee. Strange scent I can only describe as chewing tobacco in whiskey. Complex scent to say the least.

Starts out tasting of whiskey and charcoal. Mildly sweet it tastes a bit like Sweetened Scotch Whiskey. Warming in the stomach. Taste of butterscotch. Taste of apple.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall a tasty ale.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.96/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Riding high on the "Beer Camp Across America" series, Sierra Nevada revisits the Maillard's Odyssey, brewing it to imperial strength and using a small portion of smoked porter, then molasses and then bourbon barrel-aging to garner added complexity, strength and curiosity.

Tawny and russet brown, the dark redish brown ale carries a tightly knit but dainty swath of foam. Its rich and earthy aromas are laced with decadent molasses and toffee with underlying peat, campfire, bourbon and grape. But to taste, its all about the black-strap molasses, buckwheat honey and seared toffee sweetness.

And as the sweetness relaxes, the molasses turns caramelly with suggestions of chocolate, coffee, pecan, and toast. Firm in its body, the creamy textures billow with the earthen character of smoldering embers, grilled dates, figs and plum. Peppery in its lasting impressions, the bourbon releases its own vanilla, caramel and oaken charm with a hint of cherry and grape to close.

Full in body, the beer's strong creamy textures buffer against the alcoholic brunt of the booze, creating a soft but dense pillow of malt that outlasts all other flavors in finish and aftertaste. Somewhat chewy and sweet, the ale is bold in its imperial status but its depth of character is just shy of the classic ales of Scotland.

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Photo of rab53
4.16/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of psmith161
4.5/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of drewone
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Tdizzle
4.14/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

L - Poured into a snifter, the beer appears deep brownish black with no traces of light getting through. An aggressive pour yields a light brown head of foam that quickly settles to a nice cap that remains for the duration of the beer. A few streaks of lacing hang around.

S - Strong notes of oak barrel and bourbon. Roasty char, over-ripe dark fruits, chocolate, and toast emerge after a good swirl. The 9.3% ABV is boozy on the nose, but that's partially due to the pronounced barrel quality.

T - The taste delivers the oaky bourbon character of the aroma, backed by a delicious backdrop of roasty, chocolaty, and malty sweetness. The flavors dissipate rather quickly, leaving a slightly dry finish and a mild woody note lingering on the palate.

F - The texture is thinner than I anticipated for a beer of this stature, and the carbonation is too aggressive.

O - A solid barrel-aged beer. Sierra Nevada's barrel-aged offerings all possess a wonderfully oak-forward quality. However, at $20+ per bottle, I would much prefer the far superior Barrel-Aged Narwhal or Barrel-Aged Bigfoot, but I'm glad I tried this.

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Photo of twelveinches
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Bung
4.04/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of BirdsandHops
4.23/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Photo of billab914
3.94/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of ZombiesAteMyDog
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Jeffo
3.15/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Got this one from rutger this past summer. Cheers, man!

From a corked and caged 750 into a snifter

APPEARANCE: Pours out clear black and yields a two finger, medium looking, creamy tan head with great retention. Head slowly fades to a good cap and coats the glass. A clear black body with a touch of carbonation evident. Touches of wisp remain until the end leaving some good lacing on the glass.

SMELL: Oak, vanilla, sweet cream, pure chocolate, butterscotch and toffee on the nose. Slightly roasted as well. Milder but nice.

TASTE: Bourbon, caramel, toffee notes and some vanilla up front. A little watery up front, unfortunately, but it's more forthcoming after the swallow. Vanilla cream, pure chocolate, oak, butterscotch, toffee and milk chocolate in the milder yet lingering finish.

PALATE: Medium body and medium levels of carbonation. A little lighter or watery on the palate, creamy enough though, goes down smooth and finishes a bit sticky.

OVERALL: There's something a little watery about this one. There's not all that much going on up front, but it comes out more after the swallow and the nose is mild yet appealing. This one is alright but it definitely doesn't stand out in the competitive field of barrel aged imperial stouts. Thanks again, Rutger!

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Photo of teamwiggum
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Sparky44
4.18/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of GRG1313
4.5/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of MickeyHops
4.09/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of DucksFan16
3.83/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.31/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours a very dark mahogany brown, appearing nearly opaque black in the glass with a half finger khaki head with great retention and nice lacing. Aroma of bourbon, dark toasted malt, vanilla, caramel, mild dark stone fruit and chocolate, similar to a barrel aged stout. Flavor is dominated by bourbon barrel (bourbon, oak and vanilla), with dark stone fruit, dried dark fruit, mild dark toasted malt, molasses, licorice, finishing light with bourbon, oak and toffee with a mild hint of coffee bitterness and a touch of tartness. Medium bodied with good carbonation. An interesting barrel aged strong ale with character of a light stout, but also some hints of barleywine in the dark fruit elements. Lighter in body and mouth feel than some of the contemporary blended strong ales, but complex enough flavors to support the ABV. The bourbon is a bit more forward than in a stout or blended strong ale, but not overwhelming. I really liked the base beer from the beer camp and wish this had a little more of the interesting malt flavors of that excellent ale, but it is mild compared to the barrel component. That's a small quibble, because this is nicely malty and full flavored. Nicely done and unusual barreled ale. Glad I had a chance to try this.

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Photo of mactrail
4.05/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

So black it does look like a Stout. Handsome pour in the tall Peroni Lager glass with the beige foam and lots of lacing. Rather hot and spicy in the mouth. Deep oaky aroma with just whiff of booze to start. As it warms the fumes of vanilla and stewing fruit come up.

This is quite malty but not syrupy. I'm happy to see the barrel treatment for a different sort of dark beer than the usual Imperial Stout. Sort of winey and darkly fruity. Dried peaches with figs, but just that modest sweetness. Quite delicious and shall we say-- sophisticated?

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Photo of zac16125
3.88/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

750mL bottle into a snifter
2015, purchased from the Asheville-area brewery approx 9 months ago

A: Pour is opaque black, just under 1 fingers width of light mocha colored head, decent retention and leaves lots of lacing. 4.25

S: Aroma is lost of oak, lots of roasty, some char notes. Fair amount of bourbon notes from the barrel. Some semi-sweet cocoa and subtle leather/tobacco notes. 4.25

T: Roasty and very herbaceous. Raw oak, bitter black coffee, some booze. Subtle dark fruits as it warms. 3.75

M/D: Body is medium on the spectrum, which is too light for this beer, it feels thin. ABV is accentuated, and it seems boozier than the 9.3% thats listed on the label. Drinkability is pretty good. 3.5

O: A decent beer, but I have very high expectations from SN (as I love pretty much everything by them) so it left me a bit disappointed. Worth a try, but not something I would seek out. BA Narwhal is far superior to this offering and is much more readily available. 3.75

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Photo of aasher
4.34/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

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

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.17/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

On tap at the Sierra Nevada Torpedo Room in Berkeley, CA.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, burnt toast, caramel, toffee, vanilla, and slight bourbon aromas. Taste is much the same with cocoa powder, earth, char, smoke, caramel, toffee, vanilla, and bourbon flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer with barrel aging that works quite well with the base beer.

Serving type: on tap.

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Photo of Nightwish1094
4.29/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Trip In The Woods: Barrel-Aged Maillard's Odyssey from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 84 ratings