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B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher Oatmeal-Imperial Stout | Hoppin' Frog Brewery

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1,025 Reviews
B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher Oatmeal-Imperial StoutB.O.R.I.S. The Crusher Oatmeal-Imperial Stout

Brewed by:
Hoppin' Frog Brewery
Ohio, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by klewis on 11-10-2006

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 1,025 | Ratings: 2,687
Photo of BZero007
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Recieved in a trade from guzzle211, thanks for the great brew!

Poured a lovely black in to the glass with a pretty good head formation. Being that this brew is an oatmeal RIS I honestly did not expect big flavors or aromas...I was happily wrong. The aroma is the first thing that tiped me off, Big waves of roasted coffee comes powering threw with chocolate in the background. Flavors are very strong in this brew again with the Coffee, chocolate and I would have to say mollasses. Brew is very smooth with very little alcohol coming threw, but that amount helped push the other flavors threw very well. Afterwards this big brew hit's the spot and does not leave you feeling woopy. Great brew that I will pick up when I come accross it in my travels.

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Photo of nrbw23
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours either a really dark brown or black with a light brown head that goes away quickly and leaves pretty much no lacing at all. This brew also pours nice and thick like syrup.

S- Could pick up chocolate, roasted oats, smoke, tiny bit of dark fruits and alcohol.

T- Very nice brew tons of flavour jump out. Tons of roasted oats/malts then it gets sweet with chocolate and finishes with a bitter taste from hops and a little warmth from the alcohol.

M- Full in body. Nice and thick but also creamy and smooth.

D- Is very great here. Not over filling like some RIS. Very enjoyable.

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Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up recently up in Totowa. I heard a lot about this beer and this was pretty heavily hyped. This wasn't a disappointment by any stretch of the imagination, but maybe I've had too many RIS's and this just doesn't measure up to some of the others that I've enjoyed. Regardless of that, this was a solid beer that packed quite a punch!

This had a decent pour to it - nice, dark, and coffee-like. It was a bit thinner than I thought and didn't have that "motor-oil" feel to it. Instead, this is thin, roasted, and strong! Lots of coffee, toffee, and a bit of dark chocolate here. Not terribly bitter, not the smoothest, but it went down nicely and had an aftertaste like a coffee with a few creams in it. If you're after a bitter stout, this isn't it. Instead, this would be better suited as a introduction to this style, for those who aren't used to something so intense.

Personally, I wish this was a bit lighter on the alcohol. It feels stronger than 9.40%, but I don't consider it a knock on the beer. It's a personal preference and looking at the bigger picture, Hoppin' Frog has something good here. I'd love to try their other offerings, even though if I have another RIS again, it's pretty unlikely that I'd reach for this. Not an easy choice with so many stellar choices out there!

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Photo of Stunmai
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The problem with this beer isn't that its a good beer - it is actually quite good, the problem is that there are many other, cheaper beers that do it a lot better. This one was a pretty steep price to pay for a good, dark, strong ABV oatmeal stout but in comparison to Sam Smith's, Rouge or Wolavers Oatmeal Stouts they all do it a lot better and Wolavers and Sam Smiths do it for a reduced price.

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Photo of kzoobrew
3.97/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pour reveals a deep ruby hued black. BORIS settles into the glass black and completely opaque. No light breaks through, even when held directly to the light. Zero head produced on the first pour. Second pour leaves a slight head which quickly recedes to a slim mocha colored ring. With such a limited head there is no chance for lacing. While BORIS is a bigger beer, I expect more of a head.

Boozey bite comes across at first sniff. Sweet chocolate, alcohol, and roasted malt aroma. Molasses is subtle underneath.

Sweet chocolate and much less booze than the nose indicated. Deep roasted malt flavor. A light amount of char is picked up along with a touch of smoke.

Full bodied and smooth. Slightly thinner than I expected, not sure I could call this creamy. Carbonation is low but appropriate.

Good beer and rather enjoyable. BORIS did not live up to my expectations, I had hoped for much more. I would drink this one again, just not on the top of my list.

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Photo of bishopdc0
3.96/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

My wife got a bottle for me on a work trip, she is great.

Poured into my specialty pint glass. The beer is dark, black with a think very dark head very pretty beer.

The nose was apparent from the moment I popped the top, dark chocolate, slight roasted with chocolate being dominate. The nose is classic imperial stout but a little more aromatic.

The flavor is initially full of dark chocolate, with hints of dark fruits. there is a slight off flavor, mainly bitterness that is left on the tongue as it drys. I very much like the complexity of this beer, however the slight bitterness is a little odd.

Overall a great beer, great with the steak I grilled.

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Photo of Patrick999
3.96/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I'll be honest, today isn't much of an imperial stout day here in Miami. In fact, this late January afternoon is pretty warm and humid. Therefore, I myself am surprised that I reached for this bomber of B.O.R.I.S. and popped the cap.

Poured into a large snifter. The beer looks lazy in the glass. In fact, it looks somewhat flat. Yet, I am able to swirl up a thin layer of foam. It looks suitably dark; indeed, there is very little light penetration. Still, I've seen better-looking RIS's.

Not a lot in the aroma at first, but in all fairness, the bottle had been in the fridge for several weeks. The ambient temperature in my apartment is now an even 70 degrees, so it'll warm quickly. Indeed, as it does, the dominant aroma is chocolate liquor, perhaps even some Kahlua as well. There's a good deal of almond-pecan nuttiness too. Peanut brittle.

As I sip, this still may be too cold. There's not a lot to it chilled at all. Warming reveals a good deal of vanilla and lightly charred wood - blindly, I might mistake this for a barrel-aged beer. Beyond that, it does have something of a sweet chocolate liquor taste...not just straight up chocolate and coffee like many stouts....it's like a liquor-filled chocolate. Interestingly, when I tried pairing this with dark chocolate covered espresso beans, this made the beer taste more like an "ordinary" RIS; it added some bitterness. On its own, this beer is not very bitter, even though it clocks in at 60 IBU.

It feels somewhat limp, thin on the palate. I expect lush and creamy from an oatmeal stout, so I have to dock some points here.

For a beer of its size, it goes down easily. The only real limiting factor I find is the chocolatey sweetness. I don't know that this is my absolute favorite RIS, but it's certainly distinctive enough to warrant seeking it out.

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Photo of RobPete
3.96/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just took my first sip. it's a decent imperial. I poured it into a snifter and it's as dark as abused motor oil. Great aroma...taste pretty much agrees with aroma. Lots of roasted malts, some coffee and some chocolate. Light carbonation. The only turn off for me is the amount of alcohol that I'm sometimes picking up on the front. It masks all of the things that I love about imperials. I'm going to let one sit for a while and see if it softens.

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Photo of Bierguy5
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle, 9.4% ABV, 60 IBU. Pitch black in color, no highlights at all. Thick dark tan head settles down quickly to a thin ring. Roasty, chocolate, espresso aroma. A large amount of sweetness is present in this beer. Lots of chocolate, warming alcohol. Some dark fruit and vinous flavors approach near the end. A little silky. Lingering bitterness on the palate. Lower amount of carbonation. Seems a bit thin for the size of this brew. Nicely done by this newer brewery. Certainly worth trying.

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Photo of NittanyBeerFan
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Color is a completely opaque black. There is no head but for a ring around the edge. The pour seems almost creamy. The beer looks almost completely flat.

S: Very intense aroma, many components of which I was unprepared for. There is a lot of dark fruit...figs, dates, and some plum-like esters, mainly. Hints of chocolate, a mild roast, and some boozy warmth.

T: Intense flavors more or less mirror the aromas. Dates and figs are the dominant flavor up front. Bittersweet chocolate comes through much more here than in the aromas. Hops and dry roasty malts round out the flavor in the finish with a really phenomenal traditional RIS-type character. There is some alcohol warmth in the aftertaste as well.

M/D: Thick and syrupy with only slight carbonation. Finish is dry and lingering. Thick and a bit too boozy even after a year, I would put this away for a little longer next time.

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Photo of claspada
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a viscous black color with a small brown head forming, which dies down into a thin foam cap leaving minimal lacing.

Aromas begin with dark chocolate, roasted malt and licorice. Some burnt sugar notes, hints of vanilla and molasses and some espresso in the background. Searching for some of the oats but not getting much to be honest.

The tastes begin with sweet caramel maltiness and loads of molasses to go along with the sweeter licorice notes. Plenty of dark, roasted malts with a hint of char and burnt sugar, as well as a little bit of coffee and bitter hops. Again searching for some sort of toasted oat flavor to balance the intense bitter darker malts but finding little.

The mouthfeel is full in body with a smooth, medium level of carbonation. Oats impart a sublte creaminess to balance the bitterness but not as substantial as I would have liked.

Overall this is a solid Imperial Stout but with the inference that this is an Oatmeal Imperial Stout, I was left wanting more. I enjoyed this more than the barrel aged version as that totally stripped the Oatmeal Stout theme.

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Photo of CFHMagnet
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz purchased at the Hoppin' Frog B.O.R.I.S Royale release 5/26/11 into a snifter.

A. A vigorous pour yielded 2 fingers of a nice cocoa brown head. The body is the darkest brown imaginable and approaches black.

S. The nose starts off with a roasted malt aroma, which quickly mingles with roasted coffee and a cocoa-like smell.

T. Flavor starts off a mix of dark chocolate and roasted malt. Hops quickly make their presence known with a slight bitterness that mingles with coffee. Heavy alcohol taste finishes it off. A nuttiness appears on the tail end as it warms up.

M. Full. Bodied. This is a thick beer that one might have to chew if not for the carbonation helping it go along. Definitely leaves a lasting flavor and ends with an alcohol burn.

O. A slow drinker. Between the alcohol feel/content and the definite full body on this bad boy, you want to take your time to enjoy this beer. Not that that is a bad thing, as the flavor will keep you happy the whole way through.

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Photo of rarbring
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The beer is black and has a small brown head. Nearly no lacing but curtains.

The smell is smoky, dried sweet fruits, and has coffee nuances.

The taste is full of dried fruits, dates and figs, in porridge. Not much bitterness.

Low carbonation, rather soft.

Sampled at beer tasting at De Klomp, Linköping, Sweden.

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Photo of bigbubba
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer is extremely dark. There is a big mocha colored head that left sticky lacing on the glass. The smell is sweet with a lot of chocolate. It smells a bit like a cappuccino. The taste is not as good as the aroma. It just doesn't taste "stout" enough. There is a bit of a Hershey Bar flavor, and some prune or plum like fruitiness. The mouthfeel is smooth, but thin and weak for a stout, much less an imperial stout. The drinkability is better than average. It is pretty strong too!

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Photo of mcallister
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This is a beautiful pouring stout. Midnight color with a thick rich frothy deep mocha head. Retention was short but expected considering the alcohol. Leaves some lace although scattered down the glass.

Aroma is no slouch either. Rich and roasty dark bitter chocolate malt. Loads of dark brooding fruits, fig, black currant, truffle, vanilla, hints of earth and a tad of floral hop.

Very big complex masculine beer. Very bitter bakers chocolate, loads of different deep dark fruit flavors. All of the above with the addition of a burnt caramel edge. Hops are much more dominate in the mouth especially on the finish which lasts a good 30 seconds. Only thing hindering this beer is the alcohol sticks out slightly too much in the mouth.

Moutfeel is thick, and chewy. Like velvet on the tongue. Leaves a layer of resiny goodness behind. This beer is so big it would be hard to drink in abundance.

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Photo of Blybloke
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A big thanks to my buddy Dave for securing this bottle.

Pours an inky black with just the tiniest bit of red at the edges. Creamy and very dark brown head. Head lasted a couple minutes and fell to a few islands of bubbles. Very little lacing.

Aroma of chocolate, burnt coffee and molasses with a touch of alchohol. Inviting to be sure. I love the aroma of heavy stouts.

There was a nutty taste to this beer that I found a little surprising. Mild almonds. Chocolate and coffee show up in spades as well. The coffee flavor, like in the aroma, was a little burnt. Alcohol was present but not overbearing.

Mouthfeel was just short of outstanding. Smooth and creamy from the oatmeal. Very low carbonation levels with a slight alcohol pinch.

After 3/4 of the bomber I realized that I probably wouldn't want more than what was left in the bottle. Drinkability is decent, but nothing to write home about.

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Photo of ryrust5301
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours quite like a RIS. Motor oil black, and slick and syrupy. Very little head to speak of. Eventually a thin layer of chocolate colored bubbles emerge from the bottom and coat the top. A thin ring of tan is left to haunt the beer all the way to the finish.

Smell - Hoppy to say the least, followed up by a sweet bitter chocolate. The coffee oatmeal scent is very noticeable.

Taste & Mouthfeel - Here's my problem with this one. I love my RIS, but for an oatmeal stout BORIS leans way to heavily to RIS country and against the style. Way to harsh with the hops and bitterness, while not concentrating anough on the smooth oatmeal flavor. Huge amounts of hops were dropped into this one, a decedant amount of chocolate and coffee, and it seems just a pinch of oatmeal. Alcohol is very present and warming.

Drinkability - St. Ambroise is still the king of the Oatmeal stouts, but if you are looking for something closer to a hopped up version of an RIS with some oatmeal thrown in, you've found your brew.

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Photo of gonzo46and2
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Chris for bringing this to a beer tasting at a good friends house.

Pours a very opaque black with a very dark brown head that looked frothy hot cocoa.

The taste wasn't all too complex with the usual suspects for the style but it was well executed. Coffee, brown sugar and dark bitter chocolate.

Heavy and viscous mouthfeel. The finish was quite strong and bitter from the hops.

This is a very good RIS but nothing too unique. Well executed for the style.

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Photo of sidetracked
3.95/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours solid black with a thin deep brown head. Head dissipates quickly.

Smell is slightly sweet dried fruit and molasses. Little vanilla.

Upfront taste is roasted malts, sweet dried fruits--raisins and dates--some milk chocolate and semi-sweet chocolate. Bitter roasted malts and chocolate mix at the finish along with a little vanilla.

Medium to full bodied and syrupy with light carbonation. A little thin, but still good.

Really good flavor, but the body could be heavier. Dark, sweet dried fruits dominate the aroma and flavor with some roasty bitterness rounding it out.


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Photo of wspscott
3.94/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber in duvel tulip
(no date)

A: Completely black (no surprise) with an almost non-existent cappuccino colored head that disappears immediately leaving no lace.
S: Chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, some hoppy bitterness,
T: Very much like the nose, the chocolate is very apparent, with some roasted bitterness. A little bit of sweetness in the background. No hint of alcohol which is somewhat surprising. A hint of yeast fruitiness as it warms.
M: Low carbonation and a richness from residual sugars, makes for a smooth beer. I was expecting more of a creamy mouthfeel since it is an oatmeal stout. It is not like this is watery or over-attenuated, I just expected a little something different from a standard RIS.
D: This is an excellent RIS, very much worth seeking out if you like the style. I could easily see making this a regular habit if the price was right, not to mention availability in KY.

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Photo of Xul
3.94/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours almost pitch black with some deep ruby highlights around the edges, capped by a thin layer of mocha-colored head. Retention is poor as the head dissipates almost immediately, leaving scant lacing.

S: Sweet, dark chocolate up front with a boozy edge, followed by coffee, vanilla, dark fruits - cherries and figs - and a solid oatmeal character.

T: Caramel, vanilla and sweet chocolate up front. Coffee and dark fruits - more complex than on the nose, with cherries, figs and something I can't quite pinpoint - come in on the mid-palate, before giving way to cocoa and some light booze notes. Finish is a blend of coffee and dark chocolate.

M: Medium to full bodied with low to moderate carbonation, creamy but avoids being syrupy.

D: Goes down fairly easy for such a big beer but the apparent nature of the alcohol hurts a bit.

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Photo of tlema1
3.94/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: jet black with a thin, quickly dissipating tan head
S: Dark fruits and booze
T: rich, slightly boozy, dark fruit, some bitter chocolate
F: silky on the tongue, good mouthfeel
O: excellent beer, I haven't had a ton of oatmeal RISs, and this one is 2 years old

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Photo of Daniellobo
3.94/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Smooth and rather pleasing Imperial Stout, nothing crushing about it though.

Presentation: 22 oz brown capped bottle. Label pivoting around the image of a standing/hopping frog holding a jar of beer (black on this offering). Again from the distance the label is forgivable, and given its poor design is almost noteworthy for that first impression. On a second look it is another terribly designed label with at least 4 different fonts in an awful array with dreadful blending and color effects. Side paragraphs offer a general description of the brew, and intent. Lacks any bottling or freshness date. Notes Alc. by Vol. (9.4%), IBUs (60), FG (38), and OG (107). Served in a snifter.

A - Black body, small brown frothy head with very poor retention, faint surface memory ring, and no lacing.

S - Roasted aroma with a touch of coffee, boozy and fruity hint.

T - Rich roasted flavor with coffee highlights and a lightly hoppy citrus bitter finish.

M - Full body, creamy with small but adequate carbonation, rather smooth with a nice sustained finish.

D - Nice offering, well rounded, a solid mid-gear sip.

Notes: Hmmm, nice quality brew, but it is not half as outstanding as the hype would have one believe. Since this is relatively newly distributed to the area it will pick up on the novelty but on a regular basis it will have a tough competition from some other regular distributed brews on an equal or superior footing.

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Photo of Nugganooch
3.93/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Decided to pop this in honor of the 2011 GABF news. Big thanks to Charliedvrs for this one!
*22oz with tulip glass

A: BORIS pours incredibly dark and black with just the slightest hint of a brownish edge. A thin dark brown sugar colored head fizzled out rather quick and only left some spotted lace. Looks a touch viscous as the carbonation struggles.

S: Smells rich with roasty malts. A chocolatey chewy nutty and earthy aroma exudes. And a bit of sweetness comes through as the brew sits.

T: Tastes of dry roast coffee beans and chocolatey toasted grains. A bit of an earthy smokiness. Grassy pine and spice hops bitter the palate and really work well here. It's actually rather quite hoppy for a stout. Touch sweet and a tiny bit hot on the finish but does not detract from overall enjoyment. Real intense robust flavs for sure.

M: Semi thick and heavier body but with a relatively light and creamy slick texture from the oats that provide a rather enjoyable drink.

D: A tad on the syrupy sweet side but with a great hop presence and slightly hot exhalation. Overall a very classy stoot that is well balanced for such awesome big intense robust flavors. I can see why all the accolades.

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Photo of BrownNut
3.93/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Black, finger of light brown head that dissipates quickly

S - Not a big smell. Caramel, malty, chocolate, leather, minor char, vaguely vegetal in that molassessy way.

T - Something in the toffee neighborhood, but really closer to the background taste in chocolate ice cream, which pushes right up to the edge of mocha. The alcohol is very well masked. It manifests only as pleasant mildly warm fumes wafting up after the swallow.

M - Medium-heavy, somewhat viscous

O - Satisfying, rich, and nice. I might favor a little more complexity in other areas such as char or wood notes, but it's still distinct. I might buy it again.

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B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher Oatmeal-Imperial Stout from Hoppin' Frog Brewery
4.23 out of 5 based on 2,687 ratings.
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