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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

For Trade:
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Reviews: 613 | Ratings: 2,351
Photo of Gueuzedude
4/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled February 2010
A vigorous pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces an almost four-finger thick, richly browned head. The beer is very dark, almost perfectly black color that is quite opaque when held up to the light. The head manages to leave some spotty lacing on the sides of the glass as the head subsides. The aroma smells of vanillin and sweetened toasted coconut up front. This leads into a richly toasted malt character that leans towards barley husk notes, sweetened dark cocoa, and a cream laden, sweetened, French roast coffee drink. Interestingly enough this beer is not nearly as complex as I expected from a Bourbon Barrel aged Imperial Stout; I do like that this is very smooth and well integrated as the Bourbon character has not run rough-shod and hot over the aromatic profile.

The beer tastes quite sweet up front and finishes with a touch of Bourbon spice, acrid burnt malt, and a spicy carbonic bite that is a bit unexpected given that this isn't highly carbonated. Flavors of vanillin interweave with rich toasted coconut notes and the dark, chocolate like malt character to make this seem quite a bit like a rich desert. The body is rich and viscous as it lingers fatly on the palate without being cloying. As the beer warms up it loses some of the sweetness that was almost too much initially. This helps to bring out a rich, savory malt character that brings out a sort of salty, sort of smoky, definitely umami character.

A quite enjoyable beer whose biggest flaw is that it is perhaps a bit simplistic. This definitely needs to be drunk on the warm side of cool where the savory quality becomes noticed and helps to boost the complexity. The most pleasant part of this beer is that it doesn't get overwhelmed by the Bourbon Barrel aging, which is a huge relief to me.

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Photo of dqrull
4.62/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cheers Oskar, thanks alot for sharing!

Poured black as coal with light red tints at the edge when held up to a the light. Creamy thick head that dies out fairly quick and leaves some lacing.

Smells really fruity, especially of dark berries, blackberries first and foremost. Imagine blackberryjam on a piece of toasted rye bread, and a light note of coffee and a very light hint of vanilla in the back, or is it the oats?

Starts of with the toasted rye bread again, but this time the blackberries are accompanied by raspberries and an ever so light touch of blueberries. This is all followed by a little raisin and dried figs, all the while having the toasted bread along. Mid-palate it all transforms into a much less fruity experience, but with a rather bitter cocoa, and dark semi-sweet milk chocolate. There is cofee as well, and just after you have recognized these for the style signature characteristics, the creamy vanilla and oak notes push through and finishes thebeer off ever so smoothly, awesome.

Mouthfeel is creamy, almost overly creamy to me, and the carbonation is light and contributing to the creamyness.

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Photo of OskarL
4.72/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Pitch black with some red showing in the light, brown small head that disipates fast and leaves lacing.

Smell - Fruity with some berries, roasted malts, cacao, sticky warming bourbon.

Taste - Fruits and berries and then a wonderfull taste of chocolate, vanilla, coffee and a lingering cacao taste. Like a wonderfull dessert! A lot of characteristics in this beer.

Mouthfeel - Full body, creamy with low carbonation.

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Photo of BigJim5021
4.28/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours an impenetrable, inky black with a nice brown head. No light will penetrate the beer. It's like, how much more black could this be? And the answer is none. None more black.

Dark roasted malts and oaky bourbon notes fill out the lovely aroma.

Flavor is a big ol' dose of vanilla, coconut and deeply roasted chocolate malts. This is ridiculously tasty.

Mouthfeel is silky smooth, as one would expect from an oatmeal stout. It's got the perfect level of viscosity, and just the right amount of carbonation. Brilliant.

Drinkability is as high as you'll find as far as abv goes. Let's also not forget that bombers runs around $17 a pop. I'm not saying it's not worth it. It totally is. This is just a once in a blue moon treat.

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Photo of ccrida
4.44/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber (thx milwaukeeclassic!) cellared for about 9 months, poured into my Delirium snifter, Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S is dark black garnet with a small brown head that leaves almost no lace. I'm having this right after the first half of a bomber of regular B.O.R.I.S (acquired around the same time) for comparison, so much of this review will focus on that.

Smell is noticeably sweeter, big coconut from the barrels, a bit of whiskey. I love it.

Taste is similar, this one is big on the barrel character, yet that makes it delicious, very flavorful, if a bit one dimensional, especially compared to the regular version. Again, I love it, so I don't feel obliged to knock it for the lace of depth, although it does have some dark fruits, very light roast, some bitterness. The whiskey really comes out as it warms, dominating.

Mouthfeel is great. The oatmeal really shines here, silky smooth, medium light bodied, slick.

Drinkability is very good, an awesome barrel aged RIS. Great barrel character while still being smooth and easy drinking. Still, could use a bit more depth, and in the end, I preferred the regular version.

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Photo of tr4nc3d
4.69/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber poured into my snifter

Pours an opaque color with no light getting through this beer. The head is a mere half inch with poor head retention only lasting a couple seconds. Very little ring on the edges of the beer is left behind though. No lacing at all occurred while drinking the beer.

Aroma consisted of a nice sweet smell. I get hints of coffee, chocolate, good notes of bourbon, oak, molasses, vanilla, black-strap leather, and tobacco. Pretty impressed I would say.

Good amount of bakers chocolate upfront with some espresso, leading way into a mildly sweet vanilla taste, then comes in the bourbon which is not overpowering but lets you know its Bourbon Aged(which is something I like when the Bourbon does not overpower the whole beer).Good amounts of roasted malts with hints of oak, and some tobacco. Very little alcohol heat leads to a barely noticeable burn in the back, which I like. Overall I was very pleased with this beer, very complex and flavorful.

Mouthfeel is full bodied and velvet like smooth which coats the whole palate. Nice milkshake like taste stays in the aftertaste.

Overall I was very pleased with this beer, and I would definitely buy it again.

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Photo of KeefD
4.41/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A forum post about this beer reminded me that I never entered my tasting notes on this one from a few weeks ago. Shared with friends at a great impy stout tasting. This one was in my top 3 of the night. Review from notes:

A: Dark brown, ruby edges, no head or lacing, nice legs though.

S: Wow! Powerful bourbon aroma right off the top, chocolate, char, light coffee notes. Bourbon and chocolate perfectly integrated. Nice caramel comes out as it warms, bourbon fades. One of the best smelling RIS's ever.

T: Chocolaty, roasty. Good bourbon, light oak, dry finish. Very smooth and easy to drink. Bourbon not overwhelming.

M: A little thin, medium bodied, would like more viscosity. Light carb.

D: Relatively easy to drink. Bourbon is great, well balanced.

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Photo of sisuspeed
4.02/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a large snifter, Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. has a dark, dark brown, basically black body, with a thin ring of chocolate colored suds on top. Almost no lacing.

The aroma consists of cocoa powder, chocolate milk, toasted malts and a whiff of alcohol. Swirling the glass reveals some sweeter whiskey notes and a hint of barrel wood.

Chewy, chocolaty malts hit your taste buds at first, followed by slightly darker roasted malts and warming whiskey. Oats come through a little in the middle of the flavor profile, but are drown out by the stronger whiskey notes on the finish. Woodiness lingers on the tongue after a couple of sips, mixing with the slowly evaporating whiskey notes. Not overly complex in taste, but enjoyable.

Mouthfeel is probably the highlight of this beer. Super smooth, chewy, robust body with warming whiskey alcohol. The addition of oatmeal was a good idea.

Drinkability is pretty good for a big barrel aged stout. Very much a sipper and a beer that you would ideally split with someone. Whiskey is present, but not overbearing. Just about in the sweet spot for me.

Overall, this is a nice offering from Hoppin' Frog. The style and barrel aging are well done. However, nothing really stands out. A little one-dimensional at times. But stepping aside from complexity, this stout still delivers a lot of tastiness and an elegantly smooth body. I will definitely be enjoying the rest of my glass.

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Photo of abuliarose
4.46/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a snifter, a deep opaque brown body with practically no head, and fast dissipating at that. Minimal lacing. Smells quite nice, with a little bourbon nose, some wet wood evoking chicory character, some sweet milk chocolate and a little vanilla. For want of pungency, I can't ask for more nose in a barrel-aged RIS.

Tastes pretty delicious. Smooth milky chocolaty vanillaey flavors hit the tongue first, followed by a great big bourbon oak presence. The oatmeal does a lot to the texture, making it rich and creamy without sludging up the body... more of a careful syrupiness. It tastes hotter than it feels, but there is a sure alcohol presence. Fairly sweet, but quite drinkable. A little roasted wood notes in the finish. Pretty well-balanced on the barrel-aged character compared to others of its kind.

Overall this is a fine offering. I would wish for more carbonation before anything else, otherwise this is one of the best barrel-aged RIS's around.

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Photo of jrallen34
3.95/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I drank this from a 22oz bottle into a Rochefort glass.

The beer pours a very dark black. There is little carbonation, a small medium tan head rises for a second but is gone right away.

The aroma is pretty light. It starts off pretty sweet with a little chocolate and some vanilla. Its pretty one note.

The taste brings a little more complexity to the table, but not at on. It starts out midly sweet with some vanilla presenting itself the strongest. In the middle you get lots of wood and a slight alcohol finish. There is also a lot of whiskey from start to finish, its a nice touch.

The feel is ok, its a little too light for me. It has a slight warmness to it but not much of a finish.

Overall, this is a decent stout. The barrel aged is better than the regular BORIS, but its still nothing outstanding to track down.

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Photo of steeltown71
4.12/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

First impressions on the BA Boris: an absurdly smooth beer. The taste and texture evoke a frothy mocha-like experience. Nice caramel and vanilla notes but finishes medium-dry with more coffee-malt. This isn't my favorite RIS but it's absolutely worth tracking down and experiencing. I also don't doubt that this would make an incredible beer float.

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Photo of SaCkErZ9
4.52/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours from a 22oz bottle into a large snifter a pitch black color (or lack thereof) with a somewhat fizzy type, bourbon colored head with a touch of lacing. The head receded rather abruptly and remains a swirling, Kharybdis-like whirlpool in the middle with some foamy rings around the edges.

Aroma is very very nice. Loads of bourbon without being too bourbony. A great deal of vanilla as well. Oaky woodiness appears as well as the large bit of roastiness. Slight bit of raw cocoa and some raisin like qualities as well.

Super solid flavor. Great bourbon and vanilla flavors balance and compliment each other very nicely. A hefty dose of hop bitterness keeps the sweetness in check on this one. Chocolate and coffee are less evident in the flavor as the bourbon and oakiness seem to be the star here.

A little light bodied and somewhat fizzy for the style. Coats the tongue and teeth nicely, though. This is one great beer and is very easy to drink. Drinks like a 6% beer, and that is dangerous.

Thanks a bunch to ncsincere for this beauty.

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Photo of Vonerichs
3.8/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Black in color with cinnamon colored head. Head is short lived with no lacing, leaving behind a glass of thick black liquid.

No mistaking the whiskey in the nose. It's the dominant scent from start to finish. It smells like hot booze. Roasted malt and vanilla are an afterthought.

Same with the taste. This is a very good barrel aged stout, but it's a little rough and unrefined. The roasted malt, vanilla, and chocolate do better showing up in the taste than in the nose, but I still struggle to get past the whiskey. While some barrel aged stouts have nice mellow bouquets of vanilla and charred oak from the aging, this one is abrasive.

Mouthfeel is thick and creamy, with little carbonation. Finish is very, very dry.

Due to the coarseness and overwhelming presence of whiskey, this one takes a major hit from me in drinkability. I know it's not a long time, but this one sat for about 7 months before opening and it didn't seem to mellow it much.

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Photo of HopHead29
3.8/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 1.5

Served in nonic

Pours dark black with little head and no lacing

Smell is of dark fruit, whiskey, chocolate, and alcohol

Taste is white chocolate with some tart dark fruits and a prominent alcohol presence. Very intense flavor. Lots of sweet and bitter tastes

Feel is very smooth on this

Not a very drinkable beer. Lots of intense flavoring but one of the few beers that I've had a hard time putting down.

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Photo of WesWes
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a pitch black color with a thick frothy brown head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a mild barrel aroma. The patent and chocolate malts dominate. It's warm and bitter with a nice oatmeal smoothness. The taste is very nice. It has a bitter black malt character that is complimented with a bit of chocolate malt sweetness. The barrel contribution is much more pronounced in the taste. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a damn good RIS. The original is good. This one is a little more complex.

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Photo of ThreeWiseMen
3.85/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Procured this in a trade with hopsleeroy. Thanks Lee!

Poured into a Cigar City snifter.

Appearance: Looks exactly the same as regular B.O.R.I.S. (which Zach and I sampled right before this): opaque black, oily, thick, essentially no head. I'd love to see some head on this beer, but there's just none to be found. No lacing either.

Smell: When cold, the whiskey dominates. When warm, the whiskey dominates. Regular B.O.R.I.S. had a lot of complexity to it, but it was very mild. That complexity is totally overshadowed here. I can't get anything besides whiskey. I like the aroma, but it's far too plain.

Taste: When cold, the whiskey dominates. When warm, the whiskey dominates. Unlike the smell, however, there are some other flavors that emerge once the beer warms up. Specifically, I get roasted barley, caramel/molasses, and dark chocolate. Whereas regular B.O.R.I.S. had a gamut of subtle and interesting flavors, Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S. has lots of whiskey and hints of general R.I.S. flavors. I greatly prefer regular B.O.R.I.S.

Mouthfeel: Full, very lightly carbonated, and dry. Essentially the same as regular B.O.R.I.S., but with an extra dry finish. Lots of mouth-numbing and pretty solid mouth-coating.

Drinkability: While this was a very cool experience (regular B.O.R.I.S. followed by Barrel Aged B.O.R.I.S.), I much prefer the complexity of regular B.O.R.I.S. Not that there's too much whiskey in this one; there just aren't enough other flavors/aromas that can hang with it.

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Photo of SuperSpy
3.7/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass.

A - THICK. Very dark, only the faintest ruby highlights when held up to the light. Not much head but what's there has a somewhere between Coca-Cola foam and the bubbles blown in chocolate milk. Plenty of lacing considering how little initial head there was.

S - Oak and vanilla bourbon. A very sweet and tempting aroma. It smells exactly like you would expect a barrel aged beer to smell like.

T - The flavor is very similar to the aroma, but the vanilla is less pronounced. As it warms the oaky bourbon alcohol is almost harsh.

M - Lighter than I expected from the aroma and appearance. The beer hits the tongue and goes down the throat like silk, but could use a bit more body.

D - Something I would buy again. This is a very well executed beer. I very good Russian Imperial Stout, but not the greatest.

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Photo of jwhawkins81
4.22/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Aroma - Vanilla, bourbon, and roasted malts make up a fine aroma profile

Appearance - Poured a dark dark brown with a thin brown head that settled down to a collar.

Taste - Coffee upfront with a light bitterness and barrel wood notes. An slight alcohol bite that was still drinkable. A smooth roasty RIS that was probably smoothed out a little thanks to the barrel aging.

Notes - A thinner mouthfeel than I would have liked. This is a good sipping beer. Unfortunately I have yet to try the non-barrel aged version.

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Photo of Arbitrator
3.22/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Chilled bomber into a glass. I can't for the life of me remember who sent this. Whoever you are, please BM me so I can give you credit. I should track my trades better. What I do remember is that it cost about $17 in trade (shows you where my priorities are, heh).

Anyway, I appreciate having the chance to try this.

A: Pours an opaque black body with a short-lived mocha head. The bubbles vanish into nothing; the beer looks completely still and leaves no lacing down the sides.

S: Lots. Of. Whiskey. I'm one of those guys that likes a little more balance; the base beer should hold up well against the barrel. It smells like the barrel won, here. I still get the base beer, with a rummy sweetness, chocolate, roasted malt, and molasses.

T: See above. Whiskey starts the taste, and it nearly pushes the beer into being over-sweet; with the molasses, chocolate, vanilla, and some raisins, I'm a little taken aback with how saccharine it is. The finish tips it slightly toward balance by bringing in some oaky astringency and coffee, but it's fighting a losing slide into sweetness. Which is what you'd expect from the style, admittedly -- but it doesn't stand far above the middle.

M: Very smooth and creamy, and I'm reminded that this is the oatmeal contribution. Low-carbed, but it goes down with a velvety presence. A small booziness. Quite nice.

D: Independent of price, this isn't in the upper-tier of barrel-aged imperial stouts. At $17 a pop I'm just going to ignore it.

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Photo of projectflam86
4.37/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a deep black color with a thin but creamy beige head that leaves some decent lace.

S- Huge whiff of bourbon and bittersweet chocolate.

T- A quick blast of alcohol (this one is still pretty young) and bitter dark chocolate flavor dominates the taste initially. A nice touch of bourbon and vanilla bean become more pronounced as this brew warms.

M- Full bodied with a silky mouthfeel. Easy carbonation, just enough to know its there.

D- Full flavored brew with a tremendous nose. A bit boozy to drink often.

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

Bottle courtesy of mikesgroove and opened up at Pliny the Younger release day (2/5/10).

A: The pour is a thick and black with no head to speak of.

S: A great nose on this beer. A fair amount of whiskey, but nice notes of vanilla, graham cracker, chocolate, roasted malt and molasses. All things I enjoy smelling in a -bal aged stout.

T: While the nose was quite good, the flavor is only "good". Milk chocolate and whiskey are the first two flavors I pick up, followed by some vanilla and char.

M: I really enjoyed the creamy, viscous texture this beer has on the tongue. While there's not much in carbonation, the beer avoids being too syrupy.

D: Certainly not a beer to sit down and drink a bomber of, but always an enjoyable experience, but perhaps a touch too sweet.

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Photo of GregSVT
4.29/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber with a gold cap into a snifter

A: Pours a pitch black and thick like motor oil with no head and minimal bubbles coming up from the dark depths. Obviously no lacing. Hoping this hasn't gone flat.

S: The aromas are heavenly. Lots of vanilla, chocolate, and that charred barrel smell.

T: The taste is full of cocoa, vanilla, molasses, and a slight charcoal flavor. Very much like KBS but with more vanilla.

M: The feel is thick and oily with little carbonation. I would like to see a bit more carbonation but I think it helps the flavors come forward.

D: For a 9.4% beer this goes down smooth. I could drink this every week although I may reach for BCS a bit more often.

Not sure which batch this is since I've read that the first two batches had the Gold cap but it's excellent stuff. Price point is a bit steep though.

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Photo of bonkers
4.32/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured from a 22 ounce bottle into a snifter, It is jet black with a thin tan head that leaves really quick. The nose is strong bourbon with hints of vanilla and oak. The flavor has a big kick of bourbon, with vanilla and hops rounding off the edges. The finish lingers with some hot sweet booze. Even though the flavor is boozey the alcohol is not overpowering. A great sipping beer. Even though it is pricey it is worth trying.

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Photo of iconoklaztor
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

pours a murky black body with a tan sexy head! I love the look of a stout like this.

immediately smells of cococa, coffee, and whiskey fill the air.

the taste is hot with tastes ala the smell. I will say however the whiskey is def there and more notable than any other BA brew ive had before!

Very drinkable for the ABV but this brew puts a hurt on ones wallet at 18 bucks.

Overall a very good beer but I'll let my other bottle sit for a while.

NOTE: the day after I had a terrible headache. This was the ONLY beer I had consumed that night!

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Photo of jaxon53
4.37/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thank you to my boy FishGetter for grabbing this brew for me. I've been waiting to try this for some time now. Served this at cellar temperature, in a snifter, from a twenty-two ounce brown bottle.

Appearance: BA B.O.R.I.S. pours out the deepest, darkest black I think I've seen in a beer. No light could possibly penetrate this beer. A rather vigorous pourresulted in about two fingers of dark brown, soapy head. Head faded somewhat quickly, into a short cap of foam atop the beer. Some thickish lacing was left behing on my glass.

Smell: Smooth nose on this brew.Definitely some whiskey aromas in there, as well as some sweet smelling buttery oak notes. Strong chocolate and coffee aromas are present. Plenty of smokey roasted malt. Bits of toffee, caramel, and flaked oats deep in the background. Strong, assertive aromas. Hope this tastes as good as it smells.

Taste: As good as it smells, just a bit better! Again, some big buttery oak, with some quick blasts of whiskey. Whiskey isn't overwhelming, and compliments the other flavors nicely. Just the slightest bit hoppy, with plenty of roasted malt. More of the toffee and caramel noted in the nose. great balanced flavors. Finishes with some chocolate, a touch of coffee, and a warm hint of booze. Boy is this good!

Mouthfeel: Big heavy body that is smooth a silk. Perfect lower level of carbonation. Chewy and viscous.

Drinkability: Great drinkability. Big flavors and alcohol catch up to the palate though. Overall a great beer!

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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 2,351 ratings.
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