Imperial Eclipse Stout - Four Roses Bourbon | FiftyFifty Brewing Co.

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Imperial Eclipse Stout - Four Roses BourbonImperial Eclipse Stout - Four Roses Bourbon
BA SCORE
4.28/5
Outstanding
572 Ratings
Imperial Eclipse Stout - Four Roses BourbonImperial Eclipse Stout - Four Roses Bourbon
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
FiftyFifty Brewing Co.
California, United States
fiftyfiftybrewing.com

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.90%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Red wax identifies the Four Roses version.

Added by largadeer on 11-14-2010

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#784
Reviews:
151
Ratings:
572
pDev:
8.64%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
273
Gots:
282
Trade:
20
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 572 |  Reviews: 151
Photo of Jeffo
3.76/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

My mate Doops and I were lucky enough to be able to try the entire 2010 - 2008 series. This was the second bottle we opened. Thanks for tracking this one down mate, and a big thanks to everyone who made putting this set together possible.

From a bomber into a snifter
Vintage: 2010
Bottle: 616
Wax: Red

APPEARANCE: All the 2010 bottles basically look the same. Thin, transparent pour yields a small, medium looking, tan head with decent retention. Head fades relatively quickly to a faint wisp and ring. Black body, quite transparent, with no carbonation evident. A ring remains until the end leaving some dots of lacing down the glass. Just too light and transparent for the style, unfortunately.

SMELL: Milder nose that the other bourbon barrel variants, but a little more complex. Milder bourbon with more aromas of oak, vanilla and some milk chocolate. Dark, pure chocolate in there as well with some light smoky notes. Nice and more appealing, though not quite as bold hoped.

TASTE: Milder bourbon flavors, but more of the base beer in this one. Some oak, vanilla and milk chocolate to be sure, with dark chocolate, roasted and smoky malts and licorice mid-palate and into the swallow. Barrel comes forward again in the pleasant aftertaste with oak, vanilla and dark chocolate flavors lingering nicely on the palate. Not as bourbon heavy as the others, with more base beer showing through. Quite nice actually.

PALATE: Medium body and medium carbonation. Lighter on the palate, perhaps the lightest of the series, but very creamy and very smooth. Goes down smooth and silky and finishes slightly sticky. A touch of heat lingers. Needs a bit more weight perhaps, but very creamy and smooth stuff.

OVERALL: This was another good beer in the series, and I probably enjoyed it a little more than the EW we had earlier. The bourbon is a little more restrained in this one, but that allows the oak and base beer to shine through a little more. This is one I’d gladly drink again, but probably wouldn’t hunt down either. Check it out if you get the chance. I’d surely give the 2011 batch of this a go if the opportunity presented itself. Recommended.

 2,165 characters

Photo of mothman
3.76/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle 427 thanks to Chris

Pours a half finger of tan head. Color is a dark brown. Not too dark.

Aroma: aroma has a tar like flavor in the nose. Something seems burnt. Chocolate and bourbon. Oaky. Some vanilla and roast.

Taste: much better than the nose. No more burnt flavors. Lots of oak. Bourbon and vanilla. Chocolate and coffee roast.

Mouthfeel: smooth and creamy. Warming. Medium to full bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends roasted.

Overall, this was a pretty solid beet. Very enjoyable besides the nose. It was a treat. Thanks Chris.

 559 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.77/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a large brown foamy head with good retention and some light lacing. Aroma of rye whiskey notes with some woody notes and some burnt barley notes. Taste is a mix of wye whiskey notes with some burnt barley notes with some black chocolate notes with a finish that is a little bit harsh. Body is full with nice oily and creamy notes with good carbonation and light warming alcohol. Good but doesn’t really stands out against the other BA varieties of Eclipse.

 504 characters

Photo of cbutova
3.79/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Thanks Chico1985, bring on the Eclipses for the night. Stoutfest III beastmode.

A- Pitch black bomber pour to seven glasses with a black as night complexion. Light mocha tan head forms to about a finger with a frothy, creamy texture. Good retention and it falls to a thick pillow and ring. Thick lace blankets at the top continue to coat the glass most of the way down.

S- Fairly tame and quite relaxed compared to the other Stouts of the night so far. Fresh toasted oak and Four Roses whiskey bite, almost subdued a bit to pruney fruits, is nice above a smooth malty, semi-sweet roasted base. Nice dark fruits too.

T- Again, the Four Roses bite is there but actually kind of blended nicely into the dark fruity yeast and roasty, cocoa base malts. The Bourbon is strong but it doesn't really offset the rest of the beer, strength without killing balance. Fresh oaky, peppery, dark fruity feel to the whiskey. Slight honey sweetness.

MF- Moderately thick body on the palate but lacks a creaminess I have come to expect in most big stouts, seems just a bit thinned out, maybe from the bourbon. Carbonation at a medium level with a slight warmth in the finish.

The whiskey feel is more on the peppery, fruity (almost like a brandy) side with the fruity yeast and dark cocoa roast malt base. The base itself is a bit lacking and it hurts a bit overall. Not much vanilla I have come to find in BA RIS but this is a nice change. I have had a good amount of Four Roses and you can tell it has that feel. Solid. PRICE IS STEEP THOUGH.

 1,531 characters

Photo of brystmar
3.8/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed as part of last night's bottle share. Thanks to rlmartin, rmjavanut, hoppymcgee, and whartontallboy for contributing to this 11-bottle Eclipse tasting!

The Four Roses Eclipse was more bold and raw than the other varieties. Stout flavors were unleashed moreso than its peers, but the bourbon character and overall balance still left something to be desired.

Overall, the '11 EC18 was our group's consensus favorite. And honestly, I was unimpressed across the board with most of these beers. Bourbon County Stout is far superior to all of them except EC18. Very glad I got to try them all, but EC18 is the only one I'd seek out again.

 642 characters

Photo of sweemzander
3.83/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz. bottle poured into a tulip. Thanks for sharing Matt!
2011 Vintage. Bottle #723.

(A)- Pours a pitch black color. Some tan froth and lace.

(S)- Tons of oak in this. Bits of raisin and coffee, but otherwise, an overall dry, oaky, almost salty profile.

(T)- Still, the larger dry oak character from the smell is present, but does have some nice raisin, coffee, and cocoa to it.

(M)- A slightly higher carbonation level than normal, but really not that high considering. At the same time, it feels a tad thinner than the others, but still solid flavors.

(D)- Its a solid example for the style, but in my opinion one of the "lesser" examples in the Eclipse barrel variations.

 680 characters

Photo of DarthKostrizer
3.85/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the release party and finally getting around to reviewing it

Look: Pours a almost black color with 1/8 inch head and no retention

Smell: The bourbon is integrated pretty nicely with the coffee and chocolate notes but nothing truly stands out which is something I would have liked

Taste: Upfront on this one is some roasted malt with just the slightest touch of bourbon I would have really liked more and then the beer finishes with some nice coffee chocolate and oak notes

Mouthfeel: Medium body and low carbonation

Overall: They had both the 2010 and 2011 versions available for sampling at the party and this is a review of the 2011. I tried both of them and had this been a review for the 2010 version the review would be much worse and it became overpoweringly sweet and a bit off putting so I would drink this one fresh. That being said the 2011 version was still not one of my favorites of the different barrel treatments coming in slightly above the Brandy for least favorite of the night

 1,010 characters

Photo of Overlord
3.87/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a surprisingly thin dark, deep brown with a black core. Dark brown foam bubbling. Great looking head, good looking beer once settled into glass. Really shocking amount of bubbles.

Smell is surprisingly roast-y, with a bit of molasses, a bit of charred chocolate, and a surprising amount of bourbon/alcohol heat.

Taste is a bit all over the place. The bourbon is too damned hot. 9.5% abv? Really? Uhhhh...if so, it's not well integrated into the flavor profile here. Also surprisingly acrid/roast-y ... where's the bitterness coming from? Not much vanilla. Would have really liked some sweeter bourbon/vanilla notes to balance out the bittering background. The chocolate comes across much more strongly in the nose than in the flavor. The sweetness of the chocolate/charred molasses is fighting for air.

I mean, we're not talking about volcanic ash like what we've seen from recent Abyss releases, but this flavor profile was quite a bit different from the Pappy Van WInkle I tried earlier this year. Not as sweet, hotter yet not as bulky in terms of mouthfeel or flavor profile. A good beer, but not nearly worth what I paid for it. Too much charred barrel.

 1,167 characters

Photo of VeganUndead
3.88/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2014 vintage. As sweet as Four Roses is, there is a lot of sweetness remaining after a year of cellaring. Probably not the best one of the series to age, but still overall impressive

 182 characters

Photo of bcrossan
3.88/5  rDev -9.3%

Photo of Cynic-ale
3.9/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of DavoleBomb
3.91/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter. 2011 vintage, bottle #1063. Red wax so I have the right listing.

This is my fifth variant this year (EC12, EC20, BT, RR) and sixth ever ('10 EW).

4.0 A: This one falls between RR and all of the others in terms of appearance. Black color. One and a half fingers of creamy tan head. Retention is about average and a thick ring of lacing is left behind.

3.0 S: Everything about the nose in this one screams (or maybe whimpers) average. As always, the stout is low octane in flavor and ofters only scant chocolate and roastiness. The bourbon isn't as powerful as the other variants and I'm left with small amounts of leather, earth, and light fruits.

4.5 T: The taste is more legit, but it isn't too legit to quit. Still, quite legit. The stout offers the same minor chocolate and roast, but the bourbon adds a variety platter of tastes. The strongest note in this chorus is strangely whipped cream. It's like a something you'd find atop a fancy coffee beverage. After that I get coffee itself, a tangy almost persimmon like fruitiness, melon galore, coconut, and carmelized sugar. Barrel adds a good bit of vanilla. Moderately boozy. Aftertaste is a sugary sweetness, but until that point it isn't overly sweet. I don't know how the nose is so weak after tasting it.

3.5 M: Medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Somewhat creamy, but not as much as I like. Like usual, I wish this had more body.

4.0 D: This is my second favorite variant. Mighty tasty. If a better stout had been used with 50's pinnacle barrel aging, this would be something to remember. In any case, it's still quite good.

 1,617 characters

Photo of russwbeck
3.93/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Vintage 2010 Bottle #463. Shared with nhindian! From notes.

A: Opaque to the max. Dark brown with a tan head. Decent retention, which laces down the side of my tulip glass nicely.

S: Oak and vanilla on the smell. Chocolately hints as well as a bit of coffee. Bourbon is present, but not overwhelming.

T: Really smooth taste. Very complex as well. Bourbon oakiness up front. Chocolate in the middle. Huge coffee aftertaste at the end. Truly amazing how all three phases of the beer are so pronounced and the bourbon is integrated so well. Nothing but a hint of alcohol.

MF: Dark, heavy, creamy, wonderful.

D: Very good, bourbon and alcohol don't overpower you at all. Instantly became a favorite.

I enjoyed this a second time at a tasting that included 5 Eclipse variations: Elijah Craig 12 and 18, Four Roses, Heaven Hill Rittenhouse Rye, and Brewmaster's Grand Cru.

2011 Vintage Bottle #489. $25 for a 22oz bottle.

A: All of them pretty much poured the same. Finger or two of brown to light brown head. The color is black with noticeable bubbles clinging to the sides of the glass. This one specifically had the best head.

S: Hardly any bourbon on the aroma surprisingly. The focus here is roast, charred malts, and chocolate. Very different from the other bourbons. I really wish FiftyFifty would release the base beer for these, so we could see what the barrel treatment is doing to it.

T: Much more barrel aged notes on the taste as it actually seems to be the focus. Complete 180 from the aroma. This is the oakiest of the 5 probably. The bourbon treatment seems to be a bit intrusive. Too boozy and not as balanced.

MF: Lighter body overall than I expected, and lower than average carbonation. Big booziness on all of them, with a warming alcohol feeling to finish. The dryness on the palate varies with the different bourbons. This one was even lighter than the average, very boozy and dry.

O: Sort of disapointing, especially considering I loved it when I had it before. Probably would be great alone, but just didn't stack up well to the other variations. This came in last place.

The rating above comes from an average of what I thought of the two different bottles.

 2,189 characters

Photo of madtowndmb1
3.93/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of claaark13
3.95/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle #1098 poured into a small Bell's snifter.

A - Poured with tan head which turned into lacing with some bubbles. Looks marginally better than the Elijah Craig.

S - Light bourbon, dark roasted malts, light vanilla.

T - Oak, some toffee/vanilla, chocolate towards the end with a dry finish. Flavors blend well. I'm getting a slight amount of hotness as well. The toffee/vanilla in the finish is very nice.

M - A little thinner than I'd hoped.

O - Pretty good. A little hot right now, I'll see how it is next year.

 523 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.97/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Blue Palms Brewhouse in Los Angeles, CA as part of the FiftyFifty Eclipse Release Party.

2011 vintage.

Pours an opaque black with a 1/2 inch foamy khaki head that fades to nothing. Very small dots of lace form on the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, vanilla, wood, and a very mellow bourbon aroma. Taste is pretty much the same. The bourbon is somewhat astringent flavor wise. This beer has a roasty bitterness and has a very high alcohol warmth in the back of the throat. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good barrel aged stout but definitely my least favorite of the night. The bourbon flavors from the Four Roses was a bit too harsh in my opinion.

 744 characters

Photo of nataku00
3.98/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From my notes at the West Coast Barrel Aged Beer Fest at the Bistro.

Freshly poured from the tap into a pitcher and then into my tulip tasting glass. Dark brown with hints of orange at the edge of the glass when held up to the light. Opaque enough so that I can't see the carbonation. The finger of initial dark brown head dissipated very quickly, with little lacing.

The nose of this one was a bit weaker that the Heaven's Hill version of the beer also at the fest. Woody vanilla presence, with dark roasted malt and some burnt sugar/caramel sweetness.

Taste followed the nose, the nice vanilla from the barrel aging playing nicely with the burnt sugar sweetness and roasted malt backbone. Bitter initially, but finishes very smooth, with a nice lingering combination of the aromas and flavors in your throat. Very tasty.

The body was a bit on the thin side, maybe barely medium bodied. Body was noticeable as the carbonation was barely there, which didn't help.

Overall, a very nice imperial stout.

 1,009 characters

Photo of masterofsparks
3.98/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of tut2528
3.98/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bottle 1410/2011

A: pours charcoal black body, with a deep dark brown top layer. Creates a ½ fingers worth of head. Minimal lacing that leaves so spotting bubbles that hugs the side of the glass. 4.25

S: big dark fruits… plums, raisins, with a big burnt wood aroma. Theres some sugary malt present, with a light touch of chocolate and hops.

T: my God the sweetness! Enormous sugar, molasses, figs and cocoa nibs front and center. Big alcohol presence as well. big and bold bourbon right up front, semi-sweet dark chocolate, slight touch of hops. There is a nice vanilla touch in the finish. But don’t really like this balance.

M: lighter than I would like for the style. Leaves quite a sugary film on the teeth and the slight bourbon and oak on the palate.

O: decent, but definitely not worth the price to be honest. Maybe this would have been better fresh?

 868 characters

Photo of warnerry
4/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle 2613; 2011 Vintage

A - Pours deep brown with one and a half fingers of brown head. Head has very good retention and leaves some rings of lacing.

S - Aroma is somewhat subtle, but consists of sweet bourbon, vanilla, chocolate, some char and mild booze.

T - Taste is a big improvement on the nose. Bourbon is prominent up front, quickly followed by a big chocolate taste. Vanilla and more bourbon in the middle. Also seems to be a faint hop presence. A bit too much char on the finish, but still very enjoyable.

M - Medium mouthfeel, a bit lighter than I would like, but good.

O - I enjoyed the EC 12 version quite a bit more, but this is still a very nice barrel-aged stout. Wish the char (and price) could be turned down just a bit.

 745 characters

Photo of daveytheformer
4/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of acurtis
4/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of ste5venla
4/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of ipa247
4/5  rDev -6.5%

Photo of leschkie
4/5  rDev -6.5%

Imperial Eclipse Stout - Four Roses Bourbon from FiftyFifty Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.28 out of 5 with 572 ratings
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