Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. Oatmeal Imperial Stout | Hoppin' Frog Brewery

2,389 Ratings
no score
Send samples
Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. Oatmeal Imperial StoutBarrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. Oatmeal Imperial Stout

Brewed by:
Hoppin' Frog Brewery
Ohio, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
English-style Imperial Stout aged in Kentucky bourbon barrels.

Batch 1- 2009(April) GOLD cap
Batch 2- 2009(July) GOLD
Batch 3- 2009(Oct) GREEN
Batch 4- 2010 BLACK
Batch 5- 2011 RED
Batch 6- 2012 WHITE

Added by ClockworkOrange on 02-02-2009

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 2,389 |  Reviews: 625
Photo of thampel09
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of curlybird
3.77/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of brez8791
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of Greywulfken
4.26/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Green cap batch!

A: motor oil, 'natch - what head? Still, like a dead black lake.

S: chocolate, whisky barrels, molasses

T: chocolate, whiskey barrels, molasses; but then: licorice/anise, vanilla, more of a bourbon taste - honestly, very typical RIS flavors - sweet more than dry

M: full-bodied, no carbonation, sticky, but very smooth, silky, and slick

O: a similar beer to their DORIS (other than a pumpkin ale, my only Hoppin' Frog beers) - and equally good (hope I rated them similarly). Anyone who likes stouts - especially the strong RIS-type - needs to give this a try.

 581 characters

Photo of T_Hass
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of mdillon86
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of Devman171
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of belgbeerdrinker
3.75/5  rDev -12%

Photo of JMS1512
4/5  rDev -6.1%

Photo of apasternak
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of Damian
4.17/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Drank from a 1 pint 6 fl. oz./22 fl. oz. bottle purchased at Liquor World, Cambridge, MA
Served in a snifter

Absolute pitch black in appearance. Not a ray of light penetrated the viscous, oily liquid. The beer was topped by a thin, mocha-colored ring of lace that lingered for much of the drink.

The aroma was amazing from the get-go. As soon as I cracked the cap, notes of bourbon, vanilla and chocolate filled the air. Sweet and boozy. Brown sugar came through as well. Slightly roasty with some deep, dark, French roast coffee notes.

While the nose was smooth and sweet, the flavor profile was a bit harsh, yet rather complex. Super woody. Charred malts dominated. Espresso and bakers chocolate notes also came through strong. Some dark fruits appeared as well. The finish was rather dry and astringent. Burnt and somewhat boozy. A touch hot. Bitter, piney hops were detectible as well.

The liquid was medium/full-bodied. A bit thinner than I anticipated for the style. Smooth and creamy with a fine, moderate, tongue-blanketing effervescence.

After trying both the regular B.O.R.I.S. Oatmeal Imperial Stout and the barrel-aged version, I found the former to be surprisingly smoother and more drinkable. Perhaps this beer could benefit from another year or so in the cellar.

 1,282 characters

Photo of ryan1788a5
4.1/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

22oz bottle poured into a globe.

A: Pitch black. One finger brown head retains well. Spotty lacing.

S: Brownie batter and fudge sauce. Good amount of roast. Whiffs of mocha. Some earthy and piney hops. Chewy caramel, whiskey, and wood.

T: Good and roasty up front. A bit ashy even. Fudge sauce and brownie batter. Mocha. French roast. Big spike of hop bitterness and a lot of earth and pine hop flavor. Hints of vague dark fruit. Bite of whiskey is quite potent. Woody barrel. Bitter finish.

M: Huge, thick body. Weighty, chewy, viscous, and slick. Fine carbonation has some bite.

O: I'm a big whiskey drinker too, but the bite of the whiskey in this one did become a bit distracting. It's kinda hot. It isn't enough to derail the experience by any means, but I suppose I do prefer the base BORIS. Perhaps the batch I got just ended up hotter than usual.

 860 characters

Photo of BarryMFBurton
4.39/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It took me a while to muster up the courage, but I finally did it: I opened my bottle of Barrel Aged BORIS. Seriously, this beer has such a huge presence that I was afraid to open it at times. Now that I’ve made the decision, though, I’m appropriately pumped. I love a good RIS, and whiskey’s my drink of choice apart from beer; add in the reputation that Hoppin’ Frog has for epic brews, and hopefully we’ve got a winner. Only one way to find out:

After a little research, I found out that the green cap on my bottle indicated that this was brewed in Batch 3; i.e., it had been on the shelves since the winter of 2009. Wow! Over a year-and-a-half have passed since the beer was bottled, so this palate has a little extra age on it. Wonderful.

A: Not surprisingly, this one pours a devastatingly solid black. It looks viscous and creamy. The head is a big, bold brown, so thick it could pass as whipped cream. A few minutes pass and it’s all gone, with only thin retention encircling the body, looking like a dark silk that has been stretched around the rim of the glass. Lacing is sparse, but that sort of adds to this beer’s heavy appearance, in the end. This is a good-looking brew, for sure.

S: This might just be the most alluring nose I’ve ever come across in a stout. Vanilla is one of the strongest scents, and it comes like a sugar wave across every single sniff. A chocolate syrup taste comes next, alongside whatever small roasts decide to show themselves. Goose Island Bourbon County Stout comes to mind instantly, as I feel the first few scents meld together to form the perfect s’more aroma. All those sweets aren’t without their balance, though – spicy, medicinal alcohol comes in to remind that this is a beer, not a candy soda. You can instantly tell that it’s a whiskey smell, too; the woody spice is so distinctive in this nose. I’d be surprised if I ever found another beer that smelled this awesome.

T: Exquisite. Upon first taste, that’s all I can really say. All the syrupy sweets that were present in the nose – vanilla, chocolate, mocha – overwhelm the senses. They get a strong push by some roasts underneath, which work to bring out the sweets even more via contrast. After the sugar rush totally subsides, the creamy breadiness that I love about oatmeal stouts takes over. The palate maintains those earthy, oaty flavors for the remainder of the drink, even as the whiskey approaches. Unfortunately, though, it’s really not a big whiskey flavor; unlike the nose, the alcohol here comes off as more syrupy than spiced, saving its heaviest flavors for the aftertaste. The finish is, of course, dominated by these big, alcoholic tastes that you can even feel in your nose; they’re so strong that your nostrils tingle like you just had a bite out of an onion. Some grains sneak up to calm the boozy beast, leaving me with a muted tinge of rubbing alcohol and chocolate. This palate is memorably delicious.

M: I’m glad to see that this beer doesn’t have a molasses-stickiness to it. It shouldn’t be a challenge to drink a few pints of a heavy stout, and I’m happy to say that Hoppin' Frog gets that. It’s thick, but still creamy and light – silky is a good word for it, I guess.

O: Hoppin’ Frog has my full attention now. This beer commands respect, and I’m happy to give it for a beer as flavorful and epically drinkable as this. With these guys added, the list of breweries I really want to explore further has grown to epic proportions. I’m ok with that, though; too much good beer is a problem I want to have.

 3,597 characters

Photo of RedneckBeerz
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of atsprings
4.24/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber into a Duvel snifter pours a deep opaque black with almost no head, just a dark tan ring and a tiny island of thin tan froth, slight lacing is left behind on the glass. Aroma is Bourbon oak up front with roasted malts, espresso, vanilla and slight bitter cocoa. The taste is loads of sweet roasted malts with a bit of boozy alcohol, way sweeter than I expected from the aroma. The sweetness does settle down a bit as the beer warms. The beer is fairly heavy, but an enjoyable sipper. I was able to enjoy this one, but I really wish the taste had lived up to the aroma.

 580 characters

Photo of babaracas
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%

Photo of SawDog505
3.98/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a 20 Duvel tulip.Pours a thick, completely opaque black, with a two inch mocha head, that settles into a thin layer of bubbles, with a little lacing. Smell is dominated by Bourbon, some chocolate, coffee, and vanilla. Taste is all of those, bourbon the most with dark chocolate and roasted coffee in the back. Body is full, not a ton of carbonation, a little dry, and a sipper for sure. This is a great beer, but I was more impressed with regular Boris and blown away by Doris, too one dimensional.

 510 characters

Photo of jampics2
4.71/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Split a 22oz bomber with friends on Saturday before heading to a hockey game. Minor league hockey is as boring as it sounds, but it helps to have some good beer in ya!

The bottom line: This BA B.O.R.I.S. takes one of the best beers on the planet to another level. Not a beer for bourbon lovers per say (this has 1/100th of the kick of something like GI BCBS), but regular B.O.R.I.S. kissed by a nice Heaven Hill bourbon kick. The best part of this beer is that all who sampled it at our gathering, with their varying levels of beer geekdom and preference for RIS or bourbon, absolutely loved this.

A: Dark black. What little head was dark brown and dissipated rapidly. I didn't break out a ruler or protractor to measure.

S: This is the only area that was slightly underwhelming. Not a ton of strong flavors going on, but I can pick out coca, a slight amount of bourbon, and some roast and sweetness. Maybe I'm used to these BA beers screaming at my nostrils with bourbon sting or coffee, but this has mostly the normal B.O.R.I.S. aromas but a little kick of bourbon too just to let you know its special.

T: OH MY! So nice. Like regular B.O.R.I.S. but with a kiss of bourbon and some oak/vanilla from the wood. This takes it to another level without being overwhelming. Fantastic - probably the only better BA RIS I've had is the Great Lakes BA Blackout, but that's like an extreme where something from another planet holds everything together. Most try and epically fail because they become booze with beer ingredients in it. This, on the other hand, is well balanced and nothing overwhelms. Perfect on the palate.

M: Great. Creamy and not too thick or carbonated. Everything I want from an RIS.

D: The single most drinkable BA RIS I've ever had. I could drink this until I fall down. This took B.O.R.I.S. and enhanced it without changing the game entirely.

All you fans of BA beers, seek and try! All you fans of bourbon - don't they have another website for you? Something like ;p

 2,011 characters

Photo of _morandi_
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of seeswo
4.1/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours black with a half finger of cocoa head into my Surly Darkness snifter. Looks good for a BA imperial stout. Oak, whiskey, roast and booze are the predominant flavors in a somewhat tame nose. Body is pretty creamy for the style, with a medium mouthfeel and decent medium-low carbonation. Taste is roast and chocolate melded with big boozy whiskey. That said, it is pretty doable in that it is more whiskey flavor than harsh booze. I think the barrel again represents a pretty strong improvement over the base beer. The oak hangs out in the finish, partially disguised by the rest of the flavor. This is definitely a good one. The balance tilts in the direction of the barrel, but I think for this beer, that works.

Edit: shortly after this review, I did a vertical of all 5 batches of this beer. Batch 1 was super oaky. Batch 2 was really malty and unlike the other beers in the series. Batch 3 was more balanced and batches 4 and 5 were like better, tamer versions of batch 1 (read:less oak). Batch 4 was the best, but the cuvees were the best for sure. Batch 2 and batch 4 mixed was sublime.

 1,098 characters

Photo of pisano
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of Narthax
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of gratefulbeerhead
5/5  rDev +17.4%

Photo of drbenderdo
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%

Photo of oglmcdgl
3.95/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A bottle split with onix1agr and poured into duvel tulips. Its either a batch 1 or 2.

A- a hard pour yields only a small cap of mocha colored head that settles quickly and leaves no lace. A good swirl bring a bit back but leaves just as quick. Absolutely black body with some serious legs.

S- that's bourbon all right. Loads of barrel even on the colder side of things with vanilla and booze galore. Malts are very dark and bring some molasses and bakers chocolate to mind. There's some brown sugar and condensed milk in the back.

T- barrel forward with the booze a bit heavy really. Some oak and vanilla with a sweet molasses and brown sugar background. The whole ride is dominated by the barrel and really puts an impression on you.

M- full bodied and a bit sticky with a light carb and a ton of heat on the palate.

O- this is one monster ba stout and even with a good bit of time on it still retains a ton of heat. Ill scoop another and lay it down some more.

 972 characters

Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. Oatmeal Imperial Stout from Hoppin' Frog Brewery
4.26 out of 5 based on 2,389 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.

    Learn More
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.

    Learn More
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.

    Learn More