Imperial Eclipse Stout - Woodford Reserve Bourbon | FiftyFifty Brewing Co.

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Imperial Eclipse Stout - Woodford Reserve BourbonImperial Eclipse Stout - Woodford Reserve Bourbon
129 Ratings
Imperial Eclipse Stout - Woodford Reserve BourbonImperial Eclipse Stout - Woodford Reserve Bourbon

Brewed by:
FiftyFifty Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: American Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.90%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by MasterSki on 12-04-2014

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 129 |  Reviews: 22
Reviews by Duffman79:
Photo of Duffman79
4.55/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

More User Reviews:
Photo of biboergosum
4.37/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle, with the light blue (Blue Pearl in brewery parlance) speckled wax. I remember enjoying myself a fifth of the Woodford Reserve many years ago, so I'm a bit moist with anticipation here.

This beer pours a solid black hole, with the barest of basal red cola edges, and two fingers of weakly puffy, tightly foamy, and kind of chunky tan head, which leaves some rocky limestone cliff lace around the glass as it evenly subsides.

It smells of somewhat acrid Bourbon barrel notes, not unlike those first few sniffs of the real deal - with the rye spiciness, hot alcohol esters, and vanilla and caramel sweetness - bittersweet chocolate, milk-dosed coffee, muddled dark orchard fruit (maybe some cherry, perhaps some prune), and a faint earthy hoppiness. The taste is fairly sweet caramel/toffee malt, a further saccharine Bourbon whiskey essence, the sort that draws you in, rather than scare you away (which is the point where I start to recognize the Woodford Reserve influence), with its heady rye graininess, and bristling, but still restrained booziness, all alongside the reduced dark cocoa and cafe-au-lait Starbucks allusions, dried cherries, a touch of dime-store candied licorice, and a still tame gritty earthiness.

The carbonation is quite light and fanciful on its feet, rendered as a flitting frothiness, the body a sturdy medium-heavy weight, and plainly smooth, with a certain burgeoning creaminess, no real booze interlopers caring to interfere - nice. It finishes on the tempered sweet side - lots of easy-drinking Bourbon and imperial stout notes abounding.

Yup, that one-night stand (it was longer than that, but you get the point) with Woodford Reserve prepared me well for this particular variant of the Eclipse series - it's just quite about right. Whiskey, and stout, both working together to lull my palate and better senses into blissful oblivion. This is indeed good, if not great, and likely the best of the lot that I've yet tried, but that's a difficult statement to make in isolation.

 2,031 characters

Photo of dandaugherty1221
4.5/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of acurtis
4.1/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of InfernoBoss
4.56/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of whatname
4.21/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Ciocanelu
4.65/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Dark brown color, almost black, with tan head. Aroma has intense whiskey, caramel but also roasted malt. Taste starts with sweet malt, caramel, fudge, finish has lots of bourbon but also a bitter and roasty aftertaste. Medium to heavy body with low carbonation. Really good one overall, the whiskey/bourbon flavor is just a bit too harsh.

 338 characters

Photo of Ben1313
4.31/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of woodchip
4.35/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of sjones5045
4.29/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of needMIbeer
4.53/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of IKR
4.12/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2014 Vintage
11.9% ABV

Appearance: Very dark brown bordering on black with a moderate dark beige head that gradually faded.

Smell: Brown sugar, faint Whiskey, and mild coffee/roasted malt aromas. Not a bad nose but the barrel aromas are fairly mild, similar to the Rittenhouse variant.

Taste: The Bourbon bal-aging is present just as it is in the other Bourbon bal-aged Eclipses but it is less sweet than some of the other versions. The profile also features brown sugar, roast malts, mild vanilla, and tannic oak notes. The finish is fairly dry ending with some Bourbon and tannic oak notes. Fairy restrained alcohol presence.

Mouth-feel: On the light side of medium bodied with a moderate level of carbonation.

Overall: Good Eclipse variant. Not as sweet as some of the other versions and adds further to my belief that the type of barrel definitely has an influence on the final beer.

 895 characters

Photo of Lone_Freighter
4.41/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle to snifter.
It poured like motor oil. The appearance was a dark murky black color to have less than a finger's worth of smooth dieing foamy head. That seemed to escape exceptionally quick. Barely any lace.
The aroma was a wonderful blend of sweet wood, milk chocolate, dark grapes, vanilla beans, dark chocolate, raisins, dark sweet bread, sweet espresso and a touch of cigar ash.
The flavor had a stellar blend of the prior aromas - all coming together steadily climbing to a sweet pinnacle and then dropping some of the dryness of that "ashiness" I got in the aroma. The espresso I noted in the aroma seems to have faded a bit. Not much of an aftertaste, somewhat sweet bourbon.
The mouthfeel was medium bodied with a wonderful sipping quality about it. Carbonation felt a bit lower than expected, but I figured that would happen as this is an older bottle. ABV felt just a touch under than what was projected but somehow that didn't bother me either.
Overall, an absolutely wonderful barrel aged imperial stout well worthy of having again preferably in the Winter.

 1,074 characters

Photo of SkyyNapalm
4.83/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of VABA
4.35/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of GRG1313
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of kwgduke
4.29/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Treyliff
4.2/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

2016 Vintage
22oz bottle poured into a snifter

A- Pours black in color with a one-finger foamy khaki head that eventually reduces to a ring around the edge

S- plenty of barrel character on the nose; woody wet oak, caramel, vanilla & some subtle spiciness. Beyond the barrel, notes of roasted malt, chocolate and sweet honey, a hint of anise

T- sweet honey is noticed up front, followed by dark roasted malty notes of chocolate, fig & light coffee. The barrel notes come out on the finish, adding soaked barrel, vanilla & caramel on the linger 4.25

M- medium-light body with moderate carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel that continues into a slightly thin finish 3.75

O- nice barrel notes throughout, a touch thin but otherwise very good

 750 characters

Photo of dvmin98
4.25/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of BirdsandHops
4.31/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of jaydoc
4.41/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Smakawhat
4.1/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a large snifter glass. Vintage 2014, bottle run No. 1. Blue pearl wax.

Simple dark walnut brown nearly black body and opaque. Comes out quite shiny out of the bottle, with a chestnut hue. Head manages just under two fingers of mocha tan, with a whispy top and somewhat bubbled and thin collar. Quite clear from under the head when held to the light.

Excellent aroma on the beer. An interesting mix of berried fruit, light roast and a good nutty peanut butter sense. Mild sense of charred wood a little but with a hint of cream sensations but without the vanilla. Big and full quite excellent.

Palate comes a little wet for barrel aging. Hints of spiked whiskey, with a boozy and heated character. Mid palate fills with a good sense of cream but more of a milky sense almost like a condensed milk. Mild hinting nutty action almost gives off a coconut sweetness but not quite. Huge notes of char and roast character in the finish, nearly almost ashen and smokey. Hints of whiskey that are a bit more indistinct in flavor, but highly noticeable and doesn't seem as integrated into the beer all around.

Another interesting take on the Eclipse series, but comes off not as excellent as some of the others, and almost tastes like a spiked brew. Still quite delicious and drinkable though.

 1,328 characters

Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.42/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by Curran last night, thanks dude.

This one pours a fairly dark black, with a small mocha-colored head, and a small head.

Smells like warm, sweet bourbon, vanilla, chocolate, and roasted malt.

This is surprising, because most Eclipses are pretty sweet, but this has a definite bitter kick on the finish from the roasted malt. I've never tried Woodford Reserve before, but from the out-front bourbon taste on this one, I can tell I'd definitely like it. There's a definite spiciness from the bourbon, almost rye-like, with some definite dark chocolate and vanilla. There's a little bit of oak, too.

This is medium bodied, a bit thicker than most Eclipses, but still a bitter thinner than the absolute bests of this style.

This is definitely a really nice barrel-aged stout, it hits all the notes you it worth the high price this series commands? I'd say no. Still really good, but there are better stouts for a lot less money.

 963 characters

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

look: Like the other variants, dark dark brown as an Imp Stout should be, nearly opaque. Some cola highlights. Big ass tan head for a nearly 12%'r and thick creamy lacing.
smell: Much like the High West Rye. A bit of spice, in a honey roasty milkshake.
taste: does not lose anything to the nose. Chewy fudge thing on top. A slight spicy bite in the finish. As the other variants, mellow and easy drinking.

 407 characters

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Imperial Eclipse Stout - Woodford Reserve Bourbon from FiftyFifty Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.37 out of 5 with 129 ratings