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Barrel Aged Yeti | Great Divide Brewing Company

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Barrel Aged YetiBarrel Aged Yeti
BA SCORE
4.31/5
Outstanding
864 Ratings
Barrel Aged YetiBarrel Aged Yeti
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Great Divide Brewing Company
Colorado, United States
greatdivide.com

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 12.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
This unique version of Yeti Imperial Stout is aged for at least nine months in Stranahan's Colorado Whiskey barrels.

Added by ArrogantB on 10-08-2008

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#576
Reviews:
259
Ratings:
864
pDev:
10.9%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
624
Gots:
275
Trade:
16
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 864 |  Reviews: 259
Photo of kylehay2004
4.43/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

two finger dark brown head on a jet black body with no light passing through. nice lacing. Aroma is a definitely a nice whiskey barrel rich aroma with a subtle chocolate and vanilla aroma seeping in. Flavor has a very nice, just right amount of whiskey note with a nice base yeti that balance each other out perfectly. This is a very smooth bodied beer. The vicous-ness isnt lost. It is very creamy/milky. Certainly as good of a mouthfeel you can get.

 451 characters

Photo of acurtis
3.5/5  rDev -18.8%

Photo of Texasfan549
4.54/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Photo of jaydoc
4.44/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle pour courtesy of wethorseblanket at Woodshop 7 held at Beachwood BBQ & Brewing in Long Beach, CA.

2011 vintage. Bottle # 1414.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to an oily film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, wood, bourbon, and vanilla. Taste is much the same with a woody finish. There is a mild roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer that is super tasty and is showing no signs of infection that apparently so many other bottles have.

 671 characters

Photo of GRG1313
4.25/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of StonedTrippin
4.4/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

this is an awesome beer, probably the final evolution of the series. its taken me a long time to get to this one, the limited availability and brutal price points have always kept me away, but this is so worth it. on tap right now at the new barrel bar on brighton, a really really cool place. got a full pour of it, now listed at 12.5% abv, much higher than whats listed here, and trust me its all of that. inky black in color, looks even darker than normal yeti, like condensed and concentrated down, with a short and short lived tan head to it, quite a contrast with its lightness on the very dark brew. shiny and slick looking too. smells like whiskey all the way, apparently this batch spent three years in bourbon barrels of different types, and you can really appreciate all the oak character, even above the bourbon flavor imparted. its like a real good deep big red wine, where the oak flavor itself is very prominent. i feel like a lot of these end up being more flavored by the whiskey than the wood, and this one does a nice job of doing both. you get vanilla and booze, a little char in there with the dark malts, much more depth and complexity than the oak aged edition, more oaky too. rum raisin sort of complexion in the middle and then the classic yeti finish, a little sweeter and longer in this edition from the whiskey. huge body, sticky and palate coating, but still enough carbonation that it keeps moving. warm but not hot on the alcohol, which is about as much as you could hope for in a beer this strong. overall this is incredible, worthy of its price tag, and should be mentioned in the same breath as the other heavy hitters in the style. one of denvers best beers.

edit: even better with a year on it!

 1,731 characters

Photo of spycow
4/5  rDev -7.2%

Photo of kjkinsey
4.52/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of djrn2
4/5  rDev -7.2%

Photo of nmann08
4.75/5  rDev +10.2%

Photo of t0rin0
3.75/5  rDev -13%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
4.25/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of metter98
4.47/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a thin mocha colored head that quickly died down and left lacing covering the surface.
S: There are light to moderately strong aromas of bourbon in the nose along with notes of chocolate.
T: The taste is similar to the smell but the bourbon flavors aren’t nearly as prominent. There are also flavors of dark chocolate and vanilla.
M: It feels full bodied and somewhat smooth on the palate with a light to moderate amount of carbonation. There is a bit of warming from the alcohol in the finish.
O: This beer is very well balanced; it has the perfect amount of bourbon to help accentuate the taste but doesn’t overpower any of the other flavors.

Note: 2011 Vintage, Bottle #3573

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Photo of kojevergas
3.54/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Yes, this is the barrel aged variant. Not the oak aged.

BOTTLE: 2011 vintage. 750ml brown glass with a foil-ed over pry-off pressure cap. Cost was $29.00. Bottle #1687. 10.7% ABV.

Expectations are high given this beer's reputation, and the fact that it's currently #14 on the Top 50 Colorado list. Served cold into a stem-tulip. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: Dark tan colour. Nice creaminess and thickness. Retention is horrible - maybe 30 seconds at best. Leaves no lacing on the sides of the glass as it recedes.

BODY: Opaque solid ink-black. No light penetrates. No yeast particulate or hop sediment is visible.

Appears aptly-carbonated. Not unique or special for an imperial stout, but it looks good for the style. A fuller longer lasting creamier head would be nice, but they've got the darkness of head colour dialed in nicely.

AROMA: Grape, dark malts, chocolate malts, plum, and prune. I struggle to find any oak - or subsidiary vanilla or whiskey spiciness - but can't. It seems with three years of age the barrel has disappeared - at least in the aroma. It's sweet, with the grape dominating.

A pleasant aroma of average strength.

No yeast character or off-notes are detectable.

TASTE: Dominant grape. Subsidiary plum and prune. Dark malts. Chocolate malt. Raisin.

Any barrel character is extremely reticent. I wouldn't know this was barrel aged if I tried it blind. No oak, vanilla, whiskey spiciness, or barrel sugars. No marshmallow. Not even any char or burnt characteristics. Where's that Stranahan's character I know and love?

There's no coffee, no rich chocolate, no vanilla bean...this is a boring flavour profile for an imperial stout. It just doesn't bring much complexity/intricacy, nuance, or subtlety to the table, and in this style you've got to. Depth of flavour is merely average. Average duration and intensity of flavour.

I rarely cry infection, but the tartness in the third act and the unexpected grape notes make me think it's a distinct possibility. Blakelive784 notes an accompanying lactic acid presence which I second.

TEXTURE: Smooth, wet, creamy, full-bodied, thick, and syrupy without coming off too viscous or overbearing. Carbonation is apt. It could be softer.

Not oily, gushed, hot, boozy, harsh, rough, or scratchy. Unfortunately, it's slightly astringent, and right on the finish it's unnaturally dry and coarse, lending it an off-putting arid presence on the palate, extinguishing the joy of the beer.

OVERALL: Drinkable for its high ABV - which is barely noticeable. But as a Colorado boy, having heard about how this was the best of the Yetis for years, and seeing it always in a high position on the leaderboards, I expected an imperial stout with at least a great whiskey barrel presence, but this doesn't have even that. Maybe it's just the three years of age, but I'd almost say the Oak Aged Yeti evokes more of a barrel character. In spite of the grapey infection, I am enjoying it for what it is, but there's no way I'd pay the abominable price of $29.99 USD for this again. I'm reserving judgement and would like to try it without the infection, but I'm forced to rate as-is. That said, I think it's a testament to the quality of the beer that even with noticeable infection it still earns a B from me.

Serve cold; the obnoxious dryness on the finish grows more noticeable as it comes to temperature.

Low B

***
2015 vintage on-tap @ Great Divide.

This is more what I was after! Has a great chocolatey core with brilliant notes of cream and marshmallow underscored by Subtle (if not reticent) white oak barrel character. There's no bourbony vanilla or toastiness, but the oak is nice - definitely a step above oak aged yeti. I find none of whiskey's signature spiciness.

B

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Photo of Taphouse_Traveler
4.32/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of brentk56
4.35/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2011 bottling

Appearance: Pours a pitch black color; the dark mocha head is rather small but leaves legs of lace behind

Smell: Chocolate, vanilla and subtle wafts of Bourbon; alcohol detected in the aroma

Taste: After a chocolate fudge opening, the subtle Bourbon flavors blossom on the tongue, with the hops making their presence felt by mid-palate; the barrel flavors build, after the swallow, with quite a bit of oak in the finish

Mouthfeel: Full bodied, with low to moderate carbonation

Overall: This beer has been on my radar for a while so I was shocked to see it on the shelves at Bestway today; really lives up to the billing as a top drawer barrel-aged stout but, of course, I would expect nothing less from the folks at Great Divide

 747 characters

Photo of oline73
3.95/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this on-tap at Max's during Baltimore Beer Week. Poured into a goblet.

Appearance: Pours dark black with a layer of tan head that goes away completely.

Smell: Roasty and sweet with dark chocolate and dark fruit notes. There is a faint hint of smoke here.

Taste: Sweet and roasty up front with some smoke and dark chocolate. There is a bitter and roasty finish. Bourbon and mild vanilla notes throughout.

Mouthfeel: The body is on the thick side of medium with mild, tingly carbonation and a slick finish.

Overall: This beer did not live up to the hype for me. I wanted bolder flavors. The mouthfeel wasn't at all what I want from a highly rated imperial stout. Good, but I hope it is better from the bottle.

 718 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
4.38/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a nice dark brown foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of woody notes with some vanilla and bourbon notes easily noticeable. Taste is also dominated by woody notes with some vanilla and bourbon with light warming alcohol. Black chocolates notes with subtle roasted malt are also discernable. Body is full with nice creamy texture with good carbonation and some warming alcohol notes are also perceptible. Truly a world-class beer that I wouldn’t mind having again.

 529 characters

Photo of zeff80
4.2/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out an opaque, jet-black color with a one-finger, brown head of bubbly foam. Nice retention and it left sticky patches of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled of bourbon, oak, vanilla, chocolate and sweet roasted malt.

T - It tasted of roasted malt, chocolate, vanilla and bourbon. Some oak-like flavors and some tannins, too.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A full-bodied ale with a clean finish.

O - I love Yeti and this is another good version. Really good.

 476 characters

Photo of SocalKicks
4.25/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of largadeer
4.2/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks for sharing this one, Craig.

Pitch black and totally opaque, capped by a leather-hued collar.

Spicy oak overwhelms the aroma at first. As it breathes and opens up, I can pick out vanilla and dark bitter chocolate, licorice and roasted barley. There isn't much whiskey character, but the oak leaves a huge mark.

The palate has flavors of black licorice, roasted barley, baker's chocolate and a light dark fruit character that makes me think of roasted figs. There's a ton of oak character as well, spicy and tannic with a hint of whiskey. Full bodied but fairly dry, and very spicy, tannic and bitter in the finish.

I slightly prefer regular old Yeti, but this is quite good.

 685 characters

Photo of zestar
4.25/5  rDev -1.4%

Photo of mothman
4.09/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Old style label. This was from 08.

Pours very little head. Color is black with caramel hues around the edges.

Aroma: Oak and whiskey. Chocolate and caramel malts show. It is pretty malty overall. Sweet. A bit booze. Pretty awesome.

Taste: Whiskey, oak, and vanilla. Caramel and chocolate. Sweet and malty. Boozy but in a good way. Some molasses and dried fruit flavors.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, warming, and creamy. Full bodied with a lower amount of carbonation. Ends warm and dry.

Overall, this was a good -bal aged beer. Nice flavors with an all around good drinkability. I'd have more of this one.

 600 characters

Photo of DrBier
4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

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Barrel Aged Yeti from Great Divide Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.31 out of 5 with 864 ratings
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