Imperial Eclipse Stout - Elijah Craig (20 Year) | FiftyFifty Brewing Co.

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Imperial Eclipse Stout - Elijah Craig (20 Year)Imperial Eclipse Stout - Elijah Craig (20 Year)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
FiftyFifty Brewing Co.
California, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
White wax.

Added by MasterSki on 11-22-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Reviews:
160
Ratings:
584
Avg:
4.41
pDev:
8.39%
 
 
Wants:
307
Gots:
266
For Trade:
10
User Reviews
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Reviews: 160 | Ratings: 584
Photo of Dope
4.38/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2011 batch, bottle 882.

A: Pours pitch black with a mid-sized and dense medium brown head. Head fades slowly with great retention. Zero lacing.

S: Wonderful bourbon and chocolate aroma. Bourbon is pretty mellow. Strong aroma but just not a sharp, stinging aroma. Age has probably calmed it down a little. Caramel, brown sugar and toasted sugars. Lots of cocoa in there too. Hint of charred oak. A little stinging alcohol when swirled.

T: More bourbon up front, similar to the aroma in that it is strong but mellowed out. Smooth caramel and toasted sugars with some dark fruits here now. Good bit of dark chocolate floating around, especially as the bourbon fades. Strong dark fruits give it a chocolate covered raisin type flavor into the finish. A little bit of toasted sugar, dark fruits and a hint of oak in the aftertaste.

M: Nice medium-heavy body. Ultra smooth, mellow and viscous.

O: Interesting variant. I've had several others, fresh and aged and this is definitely unique. Bourbon is much mellower and smooth. That can probably be attributed to the age of the bourbon and also the age of the beer itself (which is now about 3 years old). Base beer comes out quite a bit now, with loads of dark fruits that you don't get in any of the other variants. Very distinctive raisinets flavor which is a nice touch. I'm not sure if I prefer the sharper, fresher variants - they are definitely a bit bolder but this one is easily the the best drinking. So smooth and mellowed out, it just drinks great.

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Photo of AndyAvalanche
4.55/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

22 oz. bomber poured into a Duvel Tulip Style Glass, bottle #3554 . Liquid portion comes out almost black, but realistically it's probably more of a dark brown. Nice coffee milk colored head with various sized bubbles, decent lacing, but after awhile, it makes its way down, but leaves a small ring around the edge of the glass. Some of the bubbles actually trapped themselves on the glass in between the liquid, but goes away after a little wile Slightest of slight syrup effect on the glass after every sip. Good looking beer.

Smell is really good. Lots of liquor aromas. There's plenty of bourbon/whiskey, vanilla, ammaretto and even some dark fruit liquor. Malt bill is good, there's some fudgy chocolate and slight hints of coffee flavors. I know I mentioned it already, but vanilla really is a dominant flavor here.

Taste is as good as the aroma. More dark than fudgy chocolate tones. Plenty of whiskey/bourbon vanilla tones and I swear I taste a little hint of coconut. Like many barrel aged beers there's an oaky flavor, but it's also a tad bit spicy, really good and well balanced. Sweet without being a sugar bomb, more the traditional style of a bourbon barrel aged beer. Tastes better as it approaches room temperature.

Mouthfeel is really good as well. Heavy medium to light full bodied; the flavor lingers but not tooo long.. good carbonation level, but it's perfectly smooth. Slight bite from the alcohol and bourbon, but nothing too strong. I was worried it would be a little gritty, but it's really not too much, might be if you drank it too fast, but it tastes too good to do that. The balance is really good, makes you want to sip it slowly, really drinkable. Like this beer a real lot. Don't know if I think it's the massive trade bait I've heard about in the past, but work trying for sure. Thanks Russ for a sweet trade.

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Photo of stakem
4.05/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber #4046 from 2011 poured into a matching Eclipse snifter. The brew appears a dark brown color with lighter brown seen around the edges. A thin film of khaki bubbles collects around the edge of the glass and leaves some spots of lace on the glass.

The aroma includes vanilla and caramel with a touch of fruity bourbon and toffee-like burnt sugars extracted from the barrel during aging. Some roast elements and a bit of bourbon accents that already warming fruity alcohol edge.

The taste has some raw woody elements and earth with oak barrel flavoring and an alcohol burn that is slightly raisony. Some earth and more solvent booze towards the back with a bit of herbal hop kick before blending into a roasty coffee-like aftertaste.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It is smooth yet boozy and bitey. Dare I say the aroma is significantly better than the flavor but still very good and warming. A pleasantly complex sipper that is not showing its 2 years of aging at all.

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Photo of AgentMunky
4.34/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle into a brandy snifter. Bottle 770, vintage 2011.

A: Black, with light head and decent lacing. Completely opaque.

S: Rich and wonderful. I really enjoy this one. Nougat, chocolate, and caramel.

T: Incredibly rich. Soft, sweet, and distinguished. Great bourbon is telling. Even fruity. Delicious.

M: Super-soft, but kind of flat.

O: Delicious. Definitely one of my favourite bourbon-aged stouts.

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Photo of wd40
4.57/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Bottle 3140/2011
Sampled August 2013

Excellent chocolate brown stout. Pours a thin one finger head with a vigorous pour. Lots of vanilla and chocolate and bourbon in the nose. Taste is similar with a few hints of coffee in the background. Just a little bit of heat from the alcohol, but it actually is kind if nice. Mouthfeel is very smooth. Not very carbonated but not flat. A nice and subtle carbonation the lifts and dries the thick viscous liquid that coats the inside of the mouth. Overall a real winner.

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Photo of GregSVT
4.69/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

White waxed bomber into a snifter - 2011 Vintage

A: Pours a dark brown with a nice brown head that fades to a ring and leaves lacing all over the glass as you drink.

S: The nose is an amazing mix of vanilla, chocolate, honey, and barrel.

T: The taste is superb! Lots of vanilla, chocolate fudge, honey, roasty malt, and bourbon. The barrel has been toned down a bit here to let the chocolate and honey come forward more but it's still close to the forefront.

M: The feel is creamy and on the lighter side of medium...par for the course for the Eclipse series.

O: This is definitely one of the best variants. The barrel compliments the base beer perfectly and isn't overpowering at all. Age has done it some wonders as well. I had one fresh and it was a bit boozy but this is fudgy/vanilla heaven.

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Photo of Rutager
4.12/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

2011 bottle #1094. Thanks Mrbubbler!

Appearance. Pours black (and not especially thick) with a skim of tan head.

Smell. Woody, sweet, and very smooth bourbon, caramel, vanilla and chocolate, some coffee. Not too shabs.

Taste. Very woody, smooth bourbon, caramel and vanilla, a little chocolate and a bit of coffee.

Mouthfeel. On the low side of full bodied, low carbonation.

Overall. A nice stout with a good amount of bourbon. Smooth and not a lot of heat.

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Photo of spicelab
4.07/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2011 bottle thanks to DJButters. Reviewed fom notes.

Brown hued black with a modest saffron head. Recedes to a resilient film and collar.

Coconut, liquorice bullets, candied apples and honey.

Marshmallow, toffee apple, liquorice bullets, refined oak and mild plastic. Finishes surprisingly dry.

Smooth, not remotely heavy, with silky carbonation. Lovely benign dry roasty finish.

Uncomplicated and highly approachable, with well contained barrel character.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.42/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark black with a touch of brown and a finger of frothy khaki-chocolate head. Fades normal.

S - Chocolate and dark caramel malts, molasses, oak, Bourbon, vanilla, black licorice, dark cocoa, raisin, coffee, booze.

T - Sweet chocolate and bit of caramel malts, smooth Bourbon, vanilla, lots of oak, molasses, coffee, black licorice, bitter dark cocoa, raisin and other dark fruits, and some booze.

M - Full bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth and a bit syrupy with a warming and sweet.

D - Great barrel aged stout. The bourbon and oak are very present, but very smooth and balanced.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4.24/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

650 mL bottle poured into an Eclipse snifter. 2012 bottle. Says "Reserve" on the bottle, but I don't know what that means.

Appearance - Murky black with transparent edges. Not much of a head. Wispy surface.

Smell - Smoother bourbon character than Old Fitz. Nice bourbon and barrel character. Vanilla comes through. Chocolatey.

Taste - Bourbon is smooth here too. Lots of vanilla. Much sweeter. Less bitter chocolate. Bourbon doesn't linger throughout.

Mouthfeel - Slick and creamier than the base beer. Medium carbonation. Sweet and barrel booze finish.

Overall - Much nicer barrel character than the Old Fitz. Sweeter though, which I don't love as much as others seem to.

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Photo of DovaliHops
4.52/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2011 vintage. Bottle 1942. Pours a beautiful pitch black color with a very tiny tan head that turn to bubbles instantly. Scent is very inviting with chocolate cocoa, bourbon, espresso, roasted malts, and some sweet honey. Lovely oak and vanilla as well. Scent is a bit on the sweet side. Taste is absolutely delicious. Just as the nose implies, there is a a hefty amount of chocolate...chocolate fudge to be exact. Sweet chocolate fudge with a bit of saltiness to it. Smooth bourbon and oak flavors that leave a sweet honey flavor on the back of the tongue. A bit of alcohol, but not overwhelming. Mouthfeel is full-bodied and slightly boozy. Drinkability is high. Overall, this beer is so damn tasty. Hard to compete with the 12-year, but this one may beat it.

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Photo of jeonseh
3.9/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle shared as part of Eclipse tasting

A - Dark chocolate with small milk chocolate head

S - Boozy nose with light vanilla and caramel to it.

T - Chocolate up front with a good bourbon presence that adds warming alcohol, vanilla and caramel. There is a nice oaky barrel presence as well as dark chocolate and black licorice. The bourbon comes through in the finish as well

MF - Light body with slight boozy stickiness to it. Slightly watery

O - Best of the 3 eclipses we had of the night. This one had a good bourbon presence that added a nice sweetness and complexity to the base beer which balanced well with the slight bitterness

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Photo of illidurit
4.52/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared at the Santa Cruz tasting in January. I don’t have a lot of notes, but this one really stood out as tasting like a ridiculous melange of See’s candy flavors. Heaps of chocolate, vanilla, toffee and iced coffee. Very sweet and delicious.

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Photo of Spectre
3.4/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Not a terrible beer but definitely not worth the hype. 30 dollars a bottle for a low grade stout.

A. Black/brown with a tan head.
S. Like most of the variations you can only smell the stout.
T. Dark chocolate mixed with water and a hint of coffee.
M. Goes down smooth for a thin beer but could be a little more thick.

O. When you think of amazing limited stouts that are high in price you picture Dark Lord, Black Tuesday, Bourbon County ect...Not this one. I would strongly suggest you share this beer with your girlfriend and not bring to a taysting.

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Photo of NorCalYeti
4.27/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2011 vintage, bottle #2561

taste- some winey notes in the finish, milk chocolate

color- deep brown chestnut

clarity- pours clear and dark

smell- vanilla, coconut, tobacco, toasted malts, soapy

body- lingering hoppy bite under the top lip, soft and oily on the palate, light-medium weight in the mouth, short, disappointing finish

appearance- mocha-colored carbonation after the pour but it dissipates quickly to a faint layer across the top of the beer. tight, fine bubbles, decent lacing

overall impression- starting to think these beers are short lived and should be consumed sooner than later...i'm glad i'm tapping into them now. really enjoying the nose, flavors have died off slightly, body is mellow...wishing there would be more depth of flavor

notes and comments- alcohol still present, fairly well balanced...warmth in the stomach

beer spy- got in on the pre-order through fiftyfifty, 2011, 22oz

glassware: tulip

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Photo of Sarlacc83
3.8/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle purchased in 2012. Split a couple ways. Consumed 12-17, reviewed from notes.

A: Pitch black with a very thin mocha lacing. Legs stick.

N: Deep whiff of oak, caramel, and vanilla. Fudge is the backbone, and there is a pronounced brown sugar. The bourbon is the foreground, as it should be.

T: Dominate marshmallows and vanilla. Oak is playing second fiddle. There are traces of coffee and fudge. There is a slight sourness I find distracting, but it’s not an infection.

M: Very intense alcohol. Mouthfeel is much better than the 2010; it’s heavier and fluffier.

O: A marked improvement over the previous year, but for the price, it really lacks the stand out qualities that bring it to the next tier of BA RISes. Good stuff, but I’d rather have Parabola for half the cost.

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Photo of zac16125
4.89/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22oz bottle into a snifter
2011 Version, Bottle Number 3668

Thanks to injuredreserve for sending this one over in a trade.

A: Black with some browning on the edges. A very aggressive pour yields approximately 1/2 fingers width of mocha colored head, which quickly dissipates down and leaves only the faintest hints of lacing.

S: Aroma is an incredibly strong sweetness, matched by few beers Ive ever had, coupled with boozy ethanol. Its a cake batter sweetness, along with vanilla, and rich chocolate fudge. I also get barrel notes with oak and bourbon, and dark fruits. This smells amazing, I think I could just smell this beer for an hour and be completely satisfied with the beer. Rich, bold, and complex aroma. Near perfect.

T: "Holy shit". Literally what I thought to myself after I took the first sip. There is a rich, decadent, chocolate fudge flavor up front, that gives way to bourbon notes coupled with cocoa and a bit of roasted malt. And all that from the first sip. I also get hints of black coffee, some booze, dark fruits, subtle hint of anise, and oak. The combination of a huge sweetness, balanced by bourbon barrel notes, and some booze make for an almost perfect flavor profile.

M/D: Full bodied, thick, chewy, smooth, low carbonation. ABV present, but adds depth to the beer rather than detracting from it, and there is no heat at all. Drinkability is good, but its a sipper for sure. Really nice mouthfeel, only downside is its a touch syrupy at times.

O: Overall, a fantastic beer. The aroma alone is enough to make this worth the price tag, and then you taste it and someone it lives up to the aroma! Just a phenomenal combination of flavors that make for a complex brew thats bordering on perfection. Ive had 250plus reviews and this is the first one Ive given a perfect 5 for all three categories of Smell, Taste, and Overall. One of the top 5 beers Ive ever had. World class.

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Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.15/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Awesome extra given by leschie! Thanks Kurtis!

poured into tulip glass.

reviewed from notes taken on 1/8/13.

bottle # 2384. Vintage 2011.

Appearance: black bodied beer with a thin tan cap.

Smell: bog black licorice notes and a hint of barrel notes.

Taste: Black licorice is the big flavor upfront. Oak and tobacco. Touch of a bourbon bite. Light leathery note. Chocolates. A touch of oxidation.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied beer with carbonation levels at the high end of low almost a medium carbonation level.

Overall: really good 50/50 BA stout. Really glad that I got to try it.

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Photo of BierJager89
4.89/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A: Pours pitch black, with almost no head, just a few brown bubbles.

S: Nose is all bourbon, vanilla, caramel, coffee, toffee.

T: Vanilla, caramel, bourbon, roasted malt, a touch of alcohol, but it's necessary to cut the sweetness. I like sweet things, but this is too sweet.

M: Full bodied, rich, and creamy. vanilla notes, caramel, bourbon, roasted malt, a touch of alcohol, but it's necessary to cut the sweetness.

O: This would be the perfect beer for my taste, if it weren't so sweet. Worth $30? No, but I'd buy it again anyways. Can't wait to try the 12. It is better than Four Roses in my opinion.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.59/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2011 Vintage with white wax. Thanks to Robbie for this bottle. Poured in to snifter.

A - Black with one finger of medium mocha brown head.

S - Sweet bourbon and toasted oak up front with a hint of vanilla as the barrel qualities come through. Chocolate, fudge, char and roast aromas are also present. A wonderful nose.

T - A big sweetness at first: bourbon, charred oak and vanilla from the bourbon barrel shine. A big chocolate fudge presence enters mid-palate with roast, molasses and light char notes. The big bitter roast profile and a touch of warming alcohol cut through the sweetness nicely, creating a superbly balanced beer.

M - Full body. Thick and chewy with a nice silky texture. Light carbonation.

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Photo of s1ckboy
4.05/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2011 bottle aged a little over 1 year.

A - Black body, slim tan head.

S - Oak, vanilla , chocolate, boozy

T - A lot of bourbon, good amount of bitterness, chocolate, oak ,vanilla , molasses. Slightly harsh finish.

M - Medium to full, decent amount of carbonation.

Didn't enjoy this as much as the Elijah Craig 12 yr though they are very similar. After having the Rittenhouse Rye version, which was a lot smoother, this came off as a little harsh.

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Photo of yamar68
4.67/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Really a nice looking big stout - dark oily black body with a spotty finger of light brown head, large gauge carb, tons of really interesting thick lacing.

Beautiful smooth bourbon character, some butterscotch, honeycomb, sweet milk chocolate, vanilla extract, cocoa powder, musty wood notes, insanely well balanced smelling beer. Needless to say it's quite similar to the EC12 variation.

Perfect velvet mouthfeel, not as sweet as I remember the other one being, soft chocolate, some brown sugar, a lot of vanilla, the honey plays such a delicate but integral role in the overall flavor profile, bourbon-soaked oak lingers forever on the finish, zero heat - this beer is just fantastic.

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Photo of Holland
4.42/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: dark brown to black, not very viscous, very nice tan head with excellent retention creating a froth on top.

S: vanilla, nuts, wood, cream, and slight alcohol smell with the bourbon scent.

T: more bitter than expected, which creates a nice balance with the sweet malt and dark fruit notes. Roasty flavors are more hidden beneath the dark fruit and vanilla and bourbon.

M: missing some body, but overall very good. Well carbonated.

O: excellent beer. When I first opened it, I didn't think it would be very good. Wrong. Hope they make it again, and make it at a less steep price ($30/22 ounce bottle at most places).

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Photo of cfrances33
4.47/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared, thanks to scud. Poured into a snifter.

Pour: Completely black. Pours a little splashy, with a finger of khaki head that hangs around for a little bit. Little bit of lacing.

Smell: Really nice bourbon vanilla up front, with some toasted marshmallow. Chocolate and a light dark honey in the background.

Taste: Wow. Really nice, smooth combination of toasted marshmallow and bourbon. Nice vanilla and milk chocolate in there too. Some caramel sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Sticky, yet very smooth and goes down very easily. No trace of alcohol for me.

Overall: Awesome beer. I've always been skeptical of the Eclipse series, but this was amazing. Highly recommend

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Photo of corby112
4.12/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2011 vintage, bottle 4138

Pours a dark chestnut brown color that appears pitch black and completely opaque in the glass with a one finger beige head that quickly settles into a thin, lasting ring. Spotty lacing left behind.

Complex aroma with a prominent barrel presence that compliments the base beer without completely obliterating it's characteristics. Lots of dry oak and spicy bourbon along with subtle vanilla and toasted coconut followed by a robust roasted malt presence. Slightly smokey with hints of dark chocolate, gourmet coffee bean, burnt toast and oatmeal. Nice balance of oak, spirit and roasted malt preventing it from becoming acrid or overly boozy in the nose.

Medium bodied with a strong barrel character that's decently integrated into the flavors of the base beer. Very dry with lots of charred oak and spicy bourbon lingering over the deeply roasted dark malts into a bone dry finish. Unfortunately not as complex as the aroma suggests with the dry wood flavors eliminating the vanilla/coconut notes. Plenty of spicy bourbon flavor but it's not hot or tough to drink. Also, it's not as tasty as the 12 year treatment, tasting like a different bourbon to me all together. Underneath, there is a complex malt backbone with a balance of roasted coffee bean, oatmeal, burnt toast and sweet fudge/chocolate cake notes. This is still a really good beer but the oak presence is a bit too strong for my liking and the bourbon flavor didn't live up to my expectations.

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Imperial Eclipse Stout - Elijah Craig (20 Year) from FiftyFifty Brewing Co.
4.41 out of 5 based on 584 ratings.
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