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

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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

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Reviews: 622 | Ratings: 2,376
Photo of everetends
4.09/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have rhinos00 over on BA to thank for this bottle. He hooked me up with this one in the Gentleman's Club BIF. This bottle has at least a year on it I belive. Served up in a tulip. Get on it.

A: Looks just like the regular BORIS. It has that shiny, inky black body that has some gloss to it. Its dark and not letting any light through whatsoever. Moving it around in the glass, you get that light yellow film being left on the glass. The beer appears to be thick and creamy. But yet again, there is pretty much zero head. There was a little bit of brown bubbles that came up, but they were minimal and disappeared quickly. No lace whatsoever. Has that somewhat boring look that the original had.

S: This shines here in the nose. First things first. The whiskey and wood really come out. This is nice and boozy with a good amount of vanilla wood notes. The best part is that it doesn't cover up the original BORIS aroma. Getting all of that hearty, earthy oatmeal that is nice and lightly sweet. Behind that you get the bitter chocolate presence, that is semi sweet and nicely bitter. This is great.

T: Hmmm. I will start off by saying this is good . . . probably a little better than good. BUT . . . the booze really overpowers this beer. The flavor profile is almost all boozy whiskey notes and vanilla. It kinda feels like a completely different beer without the BORIS base. I mean I am not getting any of the Oatmeal really at all that I got in the original. That was the best part for me. I am getting some chocolate notes along with some dark fruit (maybe plum, cherries and fig). With all that said, I still really like it but its a bit disappointing in some flavor arenas.

M: Coming across big and creamy like the OG BORIS. Has that nice weight to it that coats just enough, allowing flavors to linger and let you fully understand them. Getting a little more heat on the palate and throat than I remember from the original, but that may be my imagination stemming from the booze flavors. Aftertaste is all woody vanilla notes and booze.

D: This was interesting. Its really good but I feel a little let down. The best thing for me about the original BORIS was that huge oatmeal presence and this really doesn't have that at all in the flavor. The booze and whiskey notes really took over and completely changed the beer. Original BORIS became a standard for me, and I feel if you are going to screw with something, you need to make it better. And I truly can't tell you if it has become better and I fear it hasn't. Its good. Its quality, but it isn't blowing me away or making feel it improved BORIS. Ah well. Its still good and drinking well.

Serving Type: 22oz Bottle Vessel Type: Tulip Price:NA

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Photo of flannelman808
4.09/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Burnt oacher medium brown with very little to no light shining through.  True tan head tops it off barely and keeps a 2millimeter foam on top forms good while.  Thin oily but sticky legs.

Medium dark chocolate ice-cream oatmeal sandwich.  This smells like it's going to be dumb rich.  

Surprisingly this is has far more bitterness than I'd have guessed.  Dark and milk chocolate meet with a fairly sharp whisky (think Jim bean) note (not in a bad way).  Molasses and perhaps a suggestion of fig/dark cooked fruit.  Candied apple (just the red).

Mild carbonation, fairly long finish, oil slick.

Very good balance between sweet and bitter notes.  Not my go to take on the style but interesting none the less.

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

Poured from a 22 oz.. bottle into a tulip.

The appearance is a mahogany brown, nearly black, with a small mocha head.

The aroma has a nice bourbon presence. Sweet vanilla, milk chocolate, bourbon, roast malt, and a bit of chocolate control the nose.

The flavor is really nice and smooth while at the same time maintaining the the distinctness of flavor that I like. Milk chocolate first, then bourbon, vanilla, oak, a bit of general booziness, with some roasted malt and a touch of coffee as support.

The body is pleasantly full with very light carbonation. The finish has a light sweetness, but it rounds out well with the oak and whiskey dryness.

This is my favorite BORIS for sure.

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Photo of themind
4.08/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I am a big fan of bourbon barrel stouts and this one is very good. Pours a small head, has a good bourbon aroma and is tasty. Back to back with Founders Backwoods Bastard I am inclined to say I like the Founders better but I am comparing different styles. This beer is worth the cash ( $15.00) and a must try for barrel aged beer lovers.

Bottom Line: You like barrel aged bourbon? well look here it's worth a try!

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Photo of sholland119
4.08/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Green cap says this is Batch 3.

A-Black, deep black with a foamy mocha head that dissipates quickly to a nice ring. No lacing.

S-Boozy with lots of brown sugar, marshmallow, vanilla and subdued bourbon.

T-Rich flavors, well restrained alcohol. Lots of vanilla, some oak, some sweet chocolate.

M-Medium heavy, not overwhelming for the style.

O-Very tasty, rich but not overpowering. Delicious.


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Photo of bobhits
4.08/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

16 bucks for retail, 18 to consume in the bar...a tall order and I think my friend for splitting this one.

Served room temp and I highly recommend letting this one breath a bit.

Dark as night pour, this seems a bit thicker than the regular boris, but the lighting and glassware wasn't up to a proper comparison.

A strong complex roasted coffee, vanilla, chocolate, and bourbon nose.

The taste is much the same. No flavor really takes over, this is amazingly well blended and sinfully delightful. Hops at the finish give this one a lot of dark fruit flavors but the bitter roast never lets it turn overly sweet or fruity. Of course the chocolate, coffee, vanilla, and oak flavors are all very present and solid.

Very good body here. Just enough carbonation survived the barrel aging. Somewhat thick and chewy.

I'm not sure what else to say. A very very good beer. Is it on par with some of the world's top barrel aged imperial stouts? Well, my score might end up close, but close in this world is a HUGE difference. Get the price down or somewhat add that extra umph and we'll talk again.

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Photo of damndirtyape
4.07/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

22oz bomber split between two Libby porter/stout glasses. No date on the bottle but I know it was from this year. Gold cap.

Appearance: Pitch black with the barest amount of tan head. Some small amount of lacing at the edges at first but eventually even this was gone.

Smell: Whiskey (bourbon) dominates, but there is a hint of dark bittersweet chocolate and coffee underneath.

Taste: Bourbon up front moving quickly into a strong bittersweet chocolate flavor and espresso coffee bitter finish. Alcohol heat more noticeable when the beer is cold and it subsides a bit as the beer warms up to room temperature, but it's still a pretty hot beer. Very much like a blend of a chocolate espresso liquor and a shot of whiskey and less like a stout. Very tasty, but I think the beer got lost in all of this.

Mouthfeel: Thick and creamy, light carbonation. Definite alcohol bite from the whiskey noted.

Overall / Drinkability: To quote the Dave Chappelle show and Samuel Jackson beer, "It'll get ya drunk!". Very powerful beer - it is far more like a chocolate liquor with a whiskey shot than a RIS in a bourbon barrel. But maybe that's the point of this beer. I think though that this beer is way too extreme and not enough beer - that the stout got lost in it all. I like it, and I enjoyed it, but it's not a great RIS. Mouthfeel is impressive (oatmeal does it's job here) and the smell and taste are good, but it's still more like a mixed drink and less like a beer. So I'm giving it a 4.0 for being good, but I cannot see myself buying this again. If I want a Russian Imperial Stout I think I want something where the beer comes out more. This unfortunately, has moved too far into the realm of very tasty malt beverage/dessert and so I cannot rate it higher. Again, good, but not a great Russian imperial stout.

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Photo of Xul
4.07/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Jcb890 for hooking this up in a trade.

A: Pours a viscous pitch black with a scant layer of mocha colored foam that quickly settles into a ring of lacing.

S: Very well integrated aroma for a barrel aged stout - moderate whiskey character with a little bit more charred oak than usual, along with vanilla, dark chocolate, strong dark fruit notes - dark cherries, plums, and figs - along with some caramel and a bit of bitter coffee.

T: Starts out fairly subdued with some dark malts and oat character, before whiskey notes pop up in the mid-palate with some light booze and vanilla. Semi-sweet chocolate and light coffee come in late, leading to a sweet, lightly oaked chocolate finish.

M: Medium bodied with low carbonation, feels a little too thin and slick.

D: Booze is kept in check well, and the aromas and flavors are well integrated - very drinkable for a barrel aged stout.

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Photo of beergod1
4.07/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled at the Cleveland Beer Fest 5/14/11. Poured black with a tan colored head that has enough carbonation to leave a small ring that lasts. Notes of, whiskey, and heavily roasted malt and burnt Chocolate fill the nose. This is a full bodied stout with yeast flavors enhanced by malt, Burnt chocolate, coffee and a lingering hint of hop on finish. A little Hot on the Alcohol. I would love to let a bottle sit for a year or so.

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Photo of jamescain
4.07/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2009 batch 3 version (thanks to jwjon1 for sending this one), poured into a Saint Arnold’s sniffer, we did a side by side comparison with the Crusher version.

Appearance: Black with a thick mocha head about a finger thick, which quickly receded into a thin ring around the side of the glass.

Aroma: Coffee, chocolate, roasted grain, vanilla, and bourbon. I preferred the aroma in this version much more. The bourbon barrel aging added the extra complexity that the other version was missing.

Taste: Chocolate, coffee, bourbon, and alcohol. The flavors were kind of messy and a little bland, this might have been due to the aging.

Mouthfeel: Lighter body and mouth feel then its non-BA brother with medium carbonation.

Overall: I preferred the non-BA version to the BA version. The enjoyed the aroma of the BA version more but the flavor and the mouthfeel of the non-BA version was better in my opinion.

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Photo of Pinknuggets
4.06/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

bottle to HFS sniffer

A: black as night total opaque heavy Mocha head that fades quick super dark chocolate

S: a little boozy upfront I can smell the oats and the malt in there too but is slightly off putting

T:follows the nose with a little bit of alc upfront but it does fade quickly into a creamy oatmeal like flavor that goes to a bitter malt finish and you can taste the alc again a little but not horrible

M: thick but oily texture that has a creamy consistency were the carbonation is mixed in perfectly

O: really solid oatmeal imperial stout but the alc and bitterness of the hops kinda ruined it for me especially when paired with a weak smell but I liked the look and mouthfeel so though its not my favorite I still recommend it curious as to taste after some aging.

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Photo of akorsak
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A 650 mL bomber from the first batch. Thanks to Deuane for picking it up for me. Shared with janlud and ksak.

A: The stout is dark, a thick oily morass that absorbs every spectrum of visible light. Opaque? Nope, this one is a bird's eye view into the heart of darkness. Albeit a heart of darkness with a thin tan-colored head.

S: Cocoa powder, oak and vanilla drive the aroma, a soft nose that doesn't come across as overbearing. Dark malts emerge on closer inspection, smelling like a good stout.

T: The regular BORIS does its best to stand out up front, throwing out dark roasted malts, chocolate and coffee flavors. After the initial stout flavors, the bourbon and barrel gradually emerge. Oak and vanilla stand out, softening up the stout to a cocoa powder sweetness. A flourish of booziness peaks through near the end of each sip. The bourbon adds a bit of burn to each sip.

M: The mouthfeel doesn't skimp on either the stout or the barrel. The bourbon isn't as crisp as in some stouts but you can tell that it is there.

D: At nearly 10%, this is a sippin' stout. I've had both Batch 1 and 2 and I cast my vote for Batch 1.

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Photo of baconbourbon
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Quite dark with hardly any head or lacing.
Smell: Bourbon. That's about it.
Taste: Bourbon, with some slight smokey hints.
Mouthfeel: Moderately thin body, but goes down smoothly nonetheless.
Overall: It's good. Not the best that I've ever had.

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Photo of sjccmd
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours jet black with a small dark brown head that quickly fizzes away leaving a ring around the beer. Sticky lacing and legs.

The aroma begins with dark chocolate with a hint of raisins. Vanilla and oak as well. Very sweet. The bourbon is not overwhelming but is definitely there.

Roasted coffee, chocolate, dark fruits, vanilla and oak in the taste. Sweet but not too cloying.

Thick and luscious. Barely any carbonation, but the body is full enough to compensate. Luxurious seems to be an appropriate word.

Overall a very satisfying stout. I have had higher ABV stouts that were easier to drink, but this is pretty much what I look for in imperial stouts.

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Photo of brystmar
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pitch black, viscous pour yields dark tan head. Sweet caramel, roasted malts, plenty of whiskey, baker's chocolate, and traces of alcohol in the nose.

True to its BORIS base, this isn't the most complex stout on the block. Oaky whiskey starts things off, malty goodness rounds things out. Strong whiskey, boozy aftertaste lingers after swallowing. Body is big, thick, viscous, and oily.

Overall, I prefer regular BORIS. I also have an affinity for the more complex versions of the RIS style. My brother loves these simpler stouts (BORIS, Zhukov, Darkness), whereas I lean more towards Dark Lord, Black Tuesday, and Parabola. But to each his own; this is a solid brew.

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Photo of KAP1356
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes. 22 oz bottle from Batch 3 (green cap) poured into a snifter...

A - Pours black but not quite completely as there are brown hues when held to the light. A mocha colored head forms about half of a finger thick then recedes to a collar.

S - Roasted malts and chocolate fudge come first, followed by some light coconut and vanilla. Ever so slight whiskry presence mixes nicely with the rest of the nose. Some light toffee and caramel make a nice appearance as well.

T - Very well integrated barrel here as the whiskey and oak mix and complement instead of standing out and drowing out everything else. Rich chocolate fudge, toffee, caramel, dark fruits, vanilla and oak mix nicely with what whiskey is present.

M - I love the mouthfeel of BORIS. This is no different. Medium to heavier bodied with a nice thickness to it (perhaps alightly less thick than regular BORIS). Just a bit of carbonation makes it nice and creamy.

O - BORIS is one of my favorite beers of all time. This is a great barrel aged version, although I feel the base beer is slightly muddled. With that said, the barrel integration is really well done here. I will always revisit this one.

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Photo of comfortablynumb1
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to brees6221 for this one...

Poured from a bomber into a Ballast Point pint glass...

A - Pours black with a one finger brown head. Head dissipates at a fairly quick pace, and there is not much lacing to be had...

S - Smell is pretty docile. All I pick up is Chocolate and Bourbon...

T - Chocolate, molasses, dark roasted malts, and dark fruits. Bourbon comes through in the finish. Tasty...

M - Rich and creamy with next to no carbonation...

O - Not my favorite from the style, but still solid. Think I might perfer the regular version a little more, but still glad I got a chance to try this one...


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Photo of mactrail
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Silver cap on the 22 oz bottle. $17 in Denver.

Holy cow! A gigantic crazy beer. No much to look at, unless you really like used motor oil. Slight sourness I associate with black patent malt. I have rarely encountered a more alcoholic-tasting beer-- I'd believe it was 16%. Just sweet enough to enhance the malt. Just bitter enough to give it some balance and add to the long ride of the aftertaste. Whisky taste is sensational, along with a little vanilla from the oak. Fruity flavors add to the interest, more like dates and apple butter.

If you want to taste a world class mega-stout, here's one. A good example of the power of malted barley.

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Photo of BarrelO
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into a snifter.

A: Pitch black body with a thin tan head that dissipates quickly and leaves next to no lacing.

S: Chocolate, alcohol, and I think cinnamon. Alcohol becomes more prevalent as it warms up.

T: Intensely sweet and alcoholic, kind of like a chocolate liqueur. Lots of chocolate, vanilla, bourbon, cinnamon, and spices. Also plenty of alcohol burn. Aftertaste is somewhat fruity.

M: Thick and sludgy, just the way a big stout should be.

D: Regular BORIS is one of my favorite imperial stouts, so I was eager to give this a try. Unfortunately, I think that the barrel aging not only doesn't improve upon the core product, it actually detracts from it. This may not be the case after it's had some time to age and come together. But for the time being, I prefer the original.

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Photo of Lerxst
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Gold cap 22 oz bottle poured into a snifter

A-Pours black, no light showing through. A vigorous pour produces a half a finger of coffee colored head that fades fast.

S-Whiskey hits the nose first. Some roasty malt/oats come in along with some vanilla and oak. Hints of coffee and chocolate show up as well.

T-Whiskey is noticeable but not overwhelming. Bakers chocolate, roasted malt/oats, hints of coffee, vanilla, dark fruit.

M-I can't say this is full bodied, but it's almost there. Carb level is relatively low which is fitting of this beer. It is creamy and coating.

O-I enjoyed this one but it didn't blow my mind or anything. It's a good beer, but I don't think it stands up to the better bal-aged stouts out there.

Once again I wish there was a " value" category. This was a good beer, but not worth $16 a bottle. Glad I tried it, but I wouldn't buy it again at that cost. If this was a $7 bomber I'd pick it up again.

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Photo of jamie2dope
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Although there has been a heat wave around these parts for the last three weeks or so, for some reason a big stout was what I was in the mood for tonight. Barrel Aged Boris pours out a pitch black color, with some brown/red hues at the bottom, and just barely one finger of brown heading that fades away quickly. Prunes and dark chocolate become apparent early on in the nose, followed by some dark fruit and whiskey. Fudge comes to mind immediately upon sipping, with lots of jammy fruit, and the whiskey ending things on a somewhat bitter, boozy note. No doubt that this is a really big, rich beer that seems to only become more so as it warms to room temperature. The last time I tried this beer, which was probably a year or so ago, it was really hot, and although things have calmed down a bit with the alcohol, it is still one where the whiskey and heat are part of the overall picture. This one works perfectly as a sipper. Overall the barrel aging adds a nice component here, though the non barreled version is nothing to turn your nose to. If anything the whiskey barrels steal the show here whereas the oatmeal is more center stage with the original. Cheers

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Photo of julian
4.05/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: dark, dark black with an incrediblly brown/tan head. It doesn't last long, but a nice swirl of the glass agitates it up nicely.

S: Dark fruits, molasses, booze

T: Some dark fruits, some subtle tropical flavors, roasted barley, and lots of booze. Excellent.

M: Very smooth, creamy, viscous and oily. Coats the throat with ease. Very nice.

O: Very nice. Despite the high alcohol, this drinks very easily and feels great going down. Excellent!

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Photo of brewtechnik
4.04/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Super dark brown to black with dark tan head, though very weak and lasting only seconds after pour.

S: Def has much more malt aroma than hop, oak comes through with a tad of whiskey, prevalent ethanol, but not overwhelming. Roast and hop aroma very subdued.

T: Wow, perfect hop balance with the malt. Hop is there, but not taking over. Def more malt, oak and ethanol - which is most likely a combination of the near 10%abv, and whiskey aging.

M: Though the head is weak, the carbonation is certainly present and right on. I would expect a slightly heavier mouth feel from a oatmeal stout, but it still works for this beer. Doesn't linger too long on the palate and is far from cloying due to the superb hop/malt balance.

O: Buy this beer when available, it's worth checking out. Just wish the head was more retentive. This was a young beer, and would be excellent after a few years of aging.

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Photo of ricke
4.03/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to brewdan for this one.

First batch.

A: Pitch black with a small beige head that settles quickly and leaves small lacings.

S: Roasted malts, chocolate, vanilla, caramel, bourbon and oak. Hints of molasses and licorice. The smell is rich and deep. The bourbon character is subtle but more prominent than I had expected.

T: Very round, rich and full. Lots of smooth roasted malts, molasses and vanilla. Hints of chocolate and caramel. The taste is very sweet due to the massive malts and bourbon. The finish is bitter with warming bourbon flavors and some alcohol.

M: Full-bodied, creamy and smooth.

D: Although the bourbon character was more restrained in this one compared to some of the bourbon bombs out there, I thought the bourbon aromas were surprisingly prominent in this one, yet very well integrated. All in all, it was balanced and complex and very pleasant as a sipper. I had it directly after the standard version of Boris the Crusher, and I must say the barrel aging seriously changed the character of it. Although I really enjoyed BA Boris, and was really impressed by the subtle bourbon character is showcased, I do believe I enjoyed the regular version more.

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Photo of stabzmcgee
4.03/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is pitch black with a thin tan-burgundy head. Aroma is coffee and dark fruits. taste is immediate bourbon with hints of vanilla. Palate is of hot alcohol, thick viscous and oily body with a bitter finish. Overall it seems this might benefit from a year or two of laying down. Wishing the bottles had the vintage on them.

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Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. Oatmeal Imperial Stout from Hoppin' Frog Brewery
4.26 out of 5 based on 2,376 ratings.
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