Dark Hollow Artisanal Ale | Blue Mountain Brewery

Log in or Sign up to start rating.
BA SCORE
88
very good
180 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
Dark Hollow Artisanal AleDark Hollow Artisanal Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Blue Mountain Brewery
Virginia, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Bourbon Barrel Aged Stout. Dark Hollow blends the miracle of two crafts--brewing and distillation--to create a work greater than the sum of its parts. An Imperial Stout has been aged in charred American oak bourbon barrels still dripping with uncut whiskey. For 100 days the young beer patiently breathes in and out of the wood, gaining complexity, character, and serious attitude.

Added by Bierman9 on 11-02-2007

BEER STATS
Reviews:
180
Ratings:
738
Avg:
3.94
pDev:
12.44%
 
 
Wants:
67
Gots:
141
For Trade:
14
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 180 | Ratings: 738
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.38/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Thanks to GRG1313 for sharing this one at his tasting.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Tiny dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, bourbon, and wood aromas. Taste is much the same with cocoa and char flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of roast bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is an above average beer that has a better barrel aged presence in the aroma in my opinion.

 615 characters

Photo of kylehay2004
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed at the brewery. Review from notes.

A: single finger head on a clear dark brown body and very nice lacing.

S: bourbon and whiskey with oak notes dominating. little on the stout side for the aroma.

T: sweet whiskey with light roasted malts, oak and nuts. subtle milk chocolate and earthy hop notes. presence of the Makers Mark barrels is very obious.

M: medium body and moderate carbonation.

Overall: Maker's Mark barrels make for an excellent barrel to age I just think the base beer could be better to make this one really stand out.

 546 characters

Photo of Knapp85
4.09/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This poured out as a black color, not overly thick looking... Kind of watery looking. The head forms and then rapidly fades. There is a very thin retention with no lacing. The smell of the beer is a little on the boozy side, there is a pretty good amount of oak on the nose as well. Not much bourbon, definitely more of the fresh oak. The taste of the beer has a roasted vanilla note with more oak. In the finding I pick up some spicy rye as well as some raisin like flavors. The mouthfeel is thinner than I expected. Good carbonation. Overall this is decent, it's not quite as big as I was hoping for but it's not bad. Unique enough to give it a try.

 651 characters

Photo of metter98
3.76/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is jet black in color and poured with a finger high dense tan head that has very good retention properties and hardly died down and also left lots of bubbles down the sides of the glass.
S: There are light aromas of chocolate and dark malts along with hints of bourbon in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell, except that the bourbon flavors become stronger as the beer warms up and contribute flavors of oak and vanilla. The bourbon isn't that strong overall, but stands out because the underlying beer isn't that heavy-bodied.
M: It feels medium-bodied and a little smooth and thin on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer feels like it could have used a fuller body to help support the bourbon barrel aging.

 758 characters

Photo of brentk56
4.38/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch #5 - aged in Maker's Mark barrels

Appearance: Pitch black with a huge Belgianesque head that drapes a curtain of lace

Smell: Dark chocolate, with plenty of Bourbon and vanilla; discernable alcohol

Taste: Opens with a bready, dark chocolate character that, by mid-palate, adds a smooth Bourbon and vanilla aspect; the booziness arrives just before the swallow, as well; the finish is nicely balanced with the Bourbon slightly dominating the underlying chocolate flavors

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with moderate carbonation; some warmth in the gullet

Drinkability: A really nice example of a Bourbon barrel aged stout that blends both the whiskey and beer elements to a nice balance

 687 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
3.42/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours a very dark chestnut brown with a nice tan head.

S: Very nice with notes of bourbon, vanilla, roasted malt, hints of coffee, and some mingling fruit in the background.

T: Somehow the nose did not translate at all to the taste. There is quite a bit too much roast in the flavor, completing dominating everything else that was present in the smell.

M: Quite dry and a bit thin.

D: I could smell this one for quite some time, but the taste left something to be desired. There were some nice flavors in there, but things need to be balanced out just a bit more.

 571 characters

Photo of oberon
3.83/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an imperial nonic a deep choclate borwn with a nice looking one finger beige head atop.Aromas of light bourbon and vanilla,a decent amount of roast and earth as well.Flavors don't have alot of complex ity really with bourbon/oaky notes upfront that meld into a drying roasty finish,a little bitter chocolate lingers.It's not bad but Iam not sure it's worth the price tag.

 383 characters

Photo of jlindros
3.59/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Best by June 2014, thanks to HeadyHops81 for this one. Shared with many at my cellar cleaning.

Mild creamy dark colored head fades quickly, dark molasses brown color.

Nose molasses, raw sugar cane, sweet candy malts, caramel and toffee, hint of dark fruits, hint of oxidation I think, hint of booze and some whisky barrel notes.

Taste thick and syrupy, little cocoa, molasses caramel, mild whisky barrel, then oxidation too, syrupy and thick, no bitterness and fairly smooth. Nice choc syrupy finish, mild bitterness, pretty sweet.

Mouth is med bod, syrupy, lighter carb.

Overall meh. Tastes like it should have been drunk 5 years ago even though it's not that old. Plenty of oxidation, very sweet and syrupy, very little actual barrel characters, and so-so overall.

 773 characters

Photo of Kegatron
4.33/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On nitro-tap at Blue Mountain Brewery (Afton, VA) on 4/16/09. This is Batch #5 that was aged in Maker's Mark barrels. Served in a 10 oz goblet.

Pours pitch black with a finger of solidly creamy mocha colored head. Retains with a pretty standard nitro look, with a layer of foam that stays rich and frothy, leaving thick swathes of lacing back. The barrel notes take front and center in the aroma, with notes of bourbon, vanilla, and wood all making themselves known immediately before giving way to a solid undercurrent of cocoa, coffee, dark fruits, and roasted malt.

The taste is quite similar but this time the barrel notes are more evenly distributed. The Imperial Stout qualities start things out with chocolate, roasted coffee, and dark fruity tang before finishing with a blast of bitterness. The barrel notes run the whole way through the profile, with not only the taste of the Maker's Mark being evident, but also notes of vanilla and charred oak as well. I'm overall digging the barrel character here, with it laying a mellow smoothness in the mouth, and the bourbon itself imparting a light sting and dry boozy feel in the finish. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied, even with nitro, although it doesn't peev me as much with this, as the overall feel is creamy but I'm also getting a layer of warmth and barrel beefiness that lies menacingly underneath. This still stays extremely drinkable for the heftier ABV though. Nice.

I've been wanting to try this for a while and I'm glad to report that for the most part, it did not disappoint. I would have liked a little more integration between the barrel and Stout flavors in the nose but the balance in the taste more than made up for it. Really nice quaffability on this as well, although I was glad to see that it's mouthfeel qualities came out nicely despite this being served on nitro. I picked up a few bottles of this batch for cellaring, as I'm anxious to see how this one develops.

 1,950 characters

Photo of mactrail
3.29/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Dark brown, near black brew in the wine glass. Not much fizz upon opening the aggravatingly tight corked bottle. Just enough carbonation in the mouth. Rather bitter, malty, and sharp. Sweet and boozy with a whiff of vanilla.

Winey mouthfeel, and hot with alcohol. Quite a mouthful of flavor with emphasis on burnt malt. Sweet and charry with a woody note and some astringency. Tasting this the second day with a new pour from the bottle, it's a little more likable with more bourbon flavor. Still, it's on the harsh side compared to the better barrel beers. From the 750 ml bottle bought at Whole Foods in Foggy Bottom.

 620 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.02/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Blue Mountain Barrel House "Dark Hollow"
25.4 fl. oz. brown glass bottle, corked & caged.
Cork dated "Best By: NOV 2015"
$10.99 @ Cost Plus World Market, Arlington, VA

Appearance: Opaque brown-black body beneath a massive head of very dark tan foam. Excellent head retention and lacing.

Aroma: Dark-skinned fruit, berries and red grape, bittersweet chocolate, and a bit of nuttiness combine with char, a waft of smoke, a light touch of wood, and Bourbon. With each subsequent sniff each of these components appear, but almost always in a different order. It's complex and interesting, but not particularly welcoming.

Flavor: Black coffee comes into the mix, along with a bit of something medicinal (I'm thinking it has something to do with a combination of alcohol and char); and the fruitiness that was there seems to have withered a bit into dried dark fruit. It's bitter, a bit acidic, and a touch astringent. The grain and nuttiness remain, but the oak that was welcoming in the nose returns in the flavor a bit harshly, turning dry and raspy when combined with the bitterness and alcohol; and the Bourbon remains, but it's not quite as pleasant as the nose suggested it would be. As it warms some coconut comes forward, as well as a bit of nuttiness. It's generally disappointing because everything is present but it just doesn't come together properly. Perhaps an additionally year of aging would round and smooth it, at the very least softening the alcoholic edge that it has.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a dextrinous edge and a fine-bubbled median carbonation that foams up when poured, releasing some of its gas, and becoming quite smooth.

Overall: It lacks roundness and polish with sharp points of burnt roastiness, alcohol, semi-tart dark fruit, and misaligned Bourbon. I'm quite sure that fresh Bourbon was added to the barrels before being filled, but that's just conjecture, and to a certain extent completely irrelevant as what's needed is simply more time in the barrel.

 1,994 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.48/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Batch #2.

Appearance: Pours an inky black body with a small, short-lived, khaki-colored head.

Smell: Dark, roasty malts and all, but the bourbon dominates the aroma with sharp, intense notes of vanilla and wood.

Taste: Dark maltiness, tastes of caramel and chocolate, but a bit thinned out by the booze. More vanilla and oak. Moderate sweetness. There's a definite hotness there, especially on the boozey finish.

Mouthfeel: Just barely medium-bodied. Medium-low carbonation.

Drinkability: Nice start, but the bourbon starts squashing the other stout qualities and it could benefit from a greater heft of body. A little work, a bit of tweaking, and this could be phenomenal.

 678 characters

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

750 ml bottle into snifter, best before 10/2015. Pours pitch black color with a 1-2 finger dense tan head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings around the glass. Aromas of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, roasted malt, caramel, toast, vanilla, bourbon, toffee, oak, light coconut, light char, and roast/oak earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of dark/roasted malt and bourbon barrel notes; with good strength. Taste of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, roasted malt, caramel, toast, vanilla, toffee, bourbon, oak, light coconut, light char, and roast/oak earthiness. Slight roast/oak bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, roasted malt, caramel, toast, vanilla, toffee, bourbon, oak, light coconut, light char, and roast/oak earthiness on the finish for a while. Damn nice complexity, balance, and robustness of dark/roasted malt and bourbon barrel flavors; with an great malt/barrel balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Light-medium carbonation and medium-full body; with a very smooth, creamy, and lightly slick/chalky mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is an excellent barrel aged imperial stout. All around great complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roasted malt and bourbon barrel flavors; and very smooth to sip on for the big ABV. A very enjoyable offering.

 1,485 characters

Photo of Rifugium
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on nitro at Blue Mountain, Afton, VA

Dark brown-black in color, opaque, with a half inch beige head that sank to a medium-sized ringlet and laced the glass nicely. Aroma of dark roasty malts, pumpernickel, lighter bourbon notes. Nice smooth dark maltiness on the palate, fairly roasty with notes of good quality coffee and cocoa, toasted pumpernickel, earthy barrel notes, not too heavy on the bourbon, but it's definitely there, subtle vanilla. Nice body, heavy-medium, fairly smooth overall, but with a lasting roasty bitterness. Nice overall, and probably the best thing I sampled at the brewery.

 611 characters

Photo of TMoney2591
4.05/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Served in a Dogfish Head snifter.

I felt like I needed a souvenir of sorts from my first visit to the brewpub, so why not a nice seasonal stout? This stuff pours a deep, dark black-brown topped by a finger of tan foam. The nose comprises roasted malts, coffee, chocolate syrup, and a hint of char. The taste brings in more of the same, with the roast and coffee both bringing some harsh darkness. It's powerfully roasty in all the right ways. The body is a hefty medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a drying finish. Overall, a damn solid stout, probably my favorite Blue Mountain offering at the moment. There's not much of the barrel present here, but something tells me the wood contributed some minor char instead of the whiskey. I don't mind that much this time.

 777 characters

Photo of dbrauneis
3.94/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Served on-tap at Blue Mountain Brewery in Afton, VA

A: Pours a clear dark brown in color (not quite as dark a black but there is a certain amount of opacity to it) with moderate to heavy amounts of visible carbonation and some very dark amber highlights. The beer has a finger tall dense frothy light tan head that reduces to a thick film covering about half of the surface of the beer, a very thin film covering the remainder of the surface of the beer, and a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate to heavy amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of roasted malts with much stronger aroma of bourbon, vanilla, and oak. There are lighter notes of coffee and toasted coconut. Very light hints of chocolate.

T: Upfront there are moderate flavors of roasted malts with some light to moderate notes of dark chocolate and coffee. Beyond the malts, the flavors are really dominated by moderate to heavy presence of bourbon, vanilla, oak, and just a hint of toasted coconut. Light to moderate amounts of bitterness in the finish.

M: Just shy of medium bodied with moderate to heavy amounts of carbonation. Slightly thin/watery with a light amount of alcohol warming.

O: I enjoyed this beer quite a bit and it really has the bourbon aspects well represented, I think the only real comment I have about it overall is I wish it had more of the traditional body/mouthfeel for a stout (feels more like a combination stout and old ale). This is a big beer with rich and complex flavors and aromas, I would recommend sipping this one slowly.

 1,552 characters

Photo of billab914
3.48/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle purchased at the brewery a few weeks ago. It poured pretty close to black in color with a thick, foamy, tan colored head to it. Good head retention to it.

The aroma shows a good amount of chocolate to it with a little caramel and roasted malts to it. I get some sweeter, almost lactose like flavor as well. The bourbon barrel is very reserved in the aroma, I get a little of the woody oak but the bourbon is pretty well hidden unfortunately. It smells like a pretty good porter or maybe milk stout, but I'm just not getting what I expect out of a bourbon barrel imperial stout.

The taste has a lot more of the bitter, roasted malts coming through. Cocoa and roasted coffee both really come through along with some dark chocolate flavors more towards the finish. I'm getting a little more of the woody, dry, oak flavors to it, but again the bourbon is pretty hidden.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied for the style, and slightly creamy. Carbonation seems a little high for the style. Overall, it was a good beer, but it just seemed to lack the flavors I want in a bourbon imperial stout. The bourbon was almost non-existent, but the oak was decent. The sweetness and the woody flavors made it feel a little like an oak aged porter or milk stout at times to me. Not a bad beer at all, but it's just not what I really expect out of a bourbon barrel imperial stout at this price point.

 1,397 characters

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.74/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Crap. Best by May 2013. I'm a day late!

This strikes me as kind of a standard barrel aged double stout. Hearty and thick with vanilla tones there in a minimal sense. Not overly boozy, but a mild burn from alcohol. Malty and robust, yes. I don't feel like it's anything special, or frankly, remotely interesting. Nice to try though, I guess.

 341 characters

Photo of Alieniloquium
3.59/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Black with some red flecks. Nice khaki head. Very wispy with a thick collar.

Smell - Chocolate, vanilla, oak. Some dark fruits. Bourbon there too, but faint.

Taste - Much roastier. Dark chocolate. A bit of bourbon. Dark fruits in the finish.

Mouthfeel - High carbonation. Not boozy. Medium body.

Overall - Pretty good. A little odd in the finish.

 402 characters

Photo of smakawhat
4.04/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a large snifter glass. Best before 2013 March, long tug on the cork, but a good pop.

Out of the bottle classic mahogany pour, hits with a dark walnut brown body, hinting at black. Pretty opaque too some light just manages to escape . Barely half a finger of head, but it manages some decent staying power before settling to a light whipped milk chocolate mocha color. Wispy top and pleasant looking not filmy.

Nose is quite interesting. A downplayed action, not so booming, but in control, with some mild roast charring, Some minor oak depth squeeks out, but there's some fruit hiding behind here too, almost I want to say blueberry. Roast character is quite soild, giving the angle of a simple non barrel aged brew, with barrel characters taking a bit of a backseat. Slightly grainy. As the beer warms up, some licorice escapes just a bit.

Palate has a nice waffer chocolate sense. Fleeting and powdery. Going down some milk chocolate hits nicely. Mouthfeel hits ok, it senses a little papery and thin, but carries the palate and flavor nicely. Toasty grain hits also, with hints of peanut butter. Fruit angle hit on the nose is a little lost though.

Overall thought this is a pretty good example, but toned down. It's a nice sleeper to know about, with hints that there is room to even improve. I like the fact this is under the radar, and I could perhaps snag another without breaking the bank. It's nowhere near the greatness of other bourbon aged barreled brews, but I wont turn one down.

 1,527 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
4.17/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a cork and cage into a snifter, the beer is jet black, with a low profile, thin, bubbly, tan head. Aromas of milk chocolate, bourbon and vanilla, oak spice, booze, and subtle mocha notes. Flavors are smooth dark chocolate forward, with boozy undertones, a subtle bitter roasted coffee highlight, some earthy and woody notes, vanilla, bourbon, molasses, and subtle char all highlight. Very deep, layered palate, yet amazingly balanced and drinkable. The body is creamy, but with a subtle edge from the carbonation. Roasted, slightly charred, sweet chocolate and booze aftertaste. The finish has a solid linger, with the bitter roast and rich sweetness hanging out, refusing to let your taste buds walk home alone. Very solid, damn tasty brew!

 753 characters

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.54/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A blank cork so it must be Batch 1; Sample February 2009
The cork pops out with nary a peep. The beer pours into my 25cl tulip glass with a light carbonation that I am able to get to create a half finger thick, darkly browned head. The beer is quite black in color with perhaps a brown tint to it and it is completely opaque in its darkness when held up to the light. Nice, the barrel character has taken on a significant, sweet, toasted coconut note to it in the aroma. Lots of vanillin is the most dominant part of the nose, in fact it is hard to smell anything else except for coconut and vanillin; at least the aroma is incredibly smooth. Perhaps a hint of dark, roasted malt is noticeable towards the end, but it is quite slight.

The beer has a light sweetness to it up front. It picks up a definite tartness in the middle and then the barrel character kicks in, but not aggressively so; a touch of Bourbon spiciness, notes of vanillin and some alcoholic heat that warms the throat as the beer slides down. A touch of roast character adds a bit of bitterness to the finish as well as a charred malt flavor. The mix of flavors and tartness reminds me of burnt, concentrated plums towards the middle. The barrel also brings out a nice, toasted coconut flavor. This is pretty light bodied for an Imperial Stout of this strength; it can be a little thin with the alcohol warming in the finish.

Not a bad beer, I really like that the barrel character is fairly smooth all around and has lots of vanillin and coconut character. The beer is a bit thin though, it could definitely use a bit more viscous heft and richness; the additional body would work perfectly with the slight carbonation that this beer has too and would help to balance the burnt acidity and sharp roast character a bit more.

 1,795 characters

Photo of JohnGalt1
3.45/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Ditmier (my no longer ticking RB buddy :-) provided this gem at a recent tasting.. Thanks Eric.

Pours with a 3 finger dark tan head... the brew is pretty standard black but the head sticks around forever.

Nose shows pretty aromatic cocoa that is punished by wood and bourbon/vanilla... nice.

Flavor is very bourbon forward... and very woody/oak tannic... chocolate covered dark fruits... dry roasty sorta dusty char toward the finish and then the bourbon notes come back swinging.

Pretty heavy carbonation made the body a tad thinner.. Overall, it is interesting but the bourbon/wood and the carbonation needs to be dialed in a bit.

I liked it, glad I got the chance to try it... Thanks Eric. Too bad, I'll always have my notes, but in a year or so, you'll be asking, "Hey, you guys think I should trade for a Blue Mountain Dark Hollow? I love barrel aged stouts!!" ;-)

4/4/3.5/2.5/3

 889 characters

Photo of Georgiabeer
3.71/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A little bit confusing- says on the label "Blue Mountain Barrel House, Arrington, VA", yet here it is listed under Blue Mountain Brewery. Is it the same brewery? If so, there should be some indication of that on the label. If not... The other thing about this beer- it's on the edge of being sour. You don't really get that in the taste (yet), but there is a definite whiff of sour underlying the bourbon aroma. Aging in wood can be a perilous thing. In this case it doesn't detract too much from the beer, but I see from some other reviews that it has in those reviewers' cases. Pours nicely, with a black color and some decent lacing. Aside from the whiff of sour, there are prominent Bourbon aromas, especially a brown sugar and vanilla note. The taste also starts with the Bourbon, again prominently displaying a caramel sweetness and vanilla, and just a touch of a burn. A little bit of roastiness and bitterness round out the flavors, but the overwhelming impression is of sweetness, vanilla, and Bourbon. A bit lighter than I'd like in body as well.

 1,056 characters

Photo of corby112
3.78/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Best by June 2014

Pours an opaque dark chestnut brown color with a 1.5 finger beige head that very slowly settles into a thick, lasting ring. Very nice retention for the style and high ABV. Streaks of soapy lacing left behind.

The aroma has a great barrel presence that is nicely integrated info the stout characteristics of the base beer. Lots of toasted oak, vanilla, coconut and just enough sweet, spicy bourbon that makes itself know without overpowering everything else. Underneath, there is some smokey, roast and sweet malt notes balancing things out. Hints of toast, oatmeal, coffee bean and dark chocolate compliment the charred oak but the aroma could use some more bourbon for my preference.

Full bodied with a slight creamy texture and a prominent dry, spicy barrel character that lingers over the roasted malt and sweeter notes into a bone dry finish. The barrel dominates with lots of burnt oak and spicy whiskey flavor. The vanilla and toasted coconut as well as the sweeter bourbon notes from the aroma are hard to pick up. This renders the barrel flavor a bit one dimensional with an overly dry/acrid and spicy presence. The malt profile is still pretty interesting however, with deeply roasted and sweeter chocolate malt notes. Hints of burnt toast, spent coffee grinds, oatmeal and very dark cacao countered by subtle lactic cream, baker's chocolate and toffee. Some boozy heat and warmth in the finish but the 10% ABV is considerably well masked. Still, it's a bit heavy on the roast and burnt oak making it a bit tough to drink. I finished the whole bottles but four or five ounces would have been fine.

 1,629 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Dark Hollow Artisanal Ale from Blue Mountain Brewery
88 out of 100 based on 180 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Return of the Belgian Beer Fest

    BeerAdvocate Brings its All-Belgian Fest to Portland, Maine on September 17, 2016. Tickets are on sale now.

    Learn More
  • Get the Mag

    Become a BeerAdvocate magazine print subscriber today.

    Subscribe