Black Tuesday | The Bruery

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684 Reviews
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Black TuesdayBlack Tuesday
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
The Bruery
California, United States
thebruery.com

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 19.20%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our infamous Black Tuesday is an imperial stout aged in bourbon barrels for over a year. Rich caramel, toasted malt, vanilla, burnt wood and anise are just a few of the many flavors in this rich, decadent imperial stout.

2009: 19.5% ABV
2010: 18.2% ABV
2011: 18.3% ABV
2012: 19.2% ABV
2013: 18.9% ABV
2014: 19.7% ABV
2015: 19.9% ABV
2016: 20.3% ABV

Added by OlieIPA on 07-18-2009

BEER STATS
Reviews:
684
Ratings:
3,836
Avg:
4.47
pDev:
9.84%
 
 
Wants:
3,246
Gots:
1,998
For Trade:
248
User Reviews
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Reviews: 684 | Ratings: 3,836
Photo of WesMantooth
4.02/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2015 version

Poured into a snifter. It is a little less viscous looking than a lot of the other Bruery beers. It is an glossy jet black with a dark brown head that settles quickly into the beer.

It smells phenomenal. Lots of rich aromas of coconut, vanilla, marshmallow, bourbon, charred oak, chocolate, barley, and raisins/dates. Alcohol is noticeable, but nothing unexpected at 20%.

All of that gets pretty much squashed by a ton of alcohol in the flavor. It is borderline undrinkable cold. As it warms, you can start to get some charred oak, Rice Krispy treat like marshmallow sweetness, coconut, licorice, and rich milk chocolate, but it is still overshadowed by a boozy burn. It is very rich overall, and reminds me of a Bourbon County beer with the distinct aroma and flavor. Not as heavy of a body though. Between my brother and I, we struggled to drink half a bottle. For what it's worth, I don't think World Wide Stout is nearly as hot and I drink bourbon neat, so I feel like I am a pretty objective opinion.

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Photo of Ri0
4.14/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured 750ml bottle into snifter. Vintage 2015. Very dark brown with a 1 finger thin tan head that fades into thin ring. Active micro bubbles keep the beer swirling and dancing on the surface. Aroma is sweeter malts, chocolate covered caramel with vanilla and bourbon soaked raisins. The taste is dessert like, with caramel covered in milk chocolate. Mocha late with some raisin, vanilla and bourbon notes. Medium feel with soft carbonation and some booziness from the high ABV. Enjoyed this as an all day sipper.

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Photo of raspy22
4.96/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

2015 vintage. Drunk Feb2017.
Look was very dark, practically no head. Wonderful aroma of dark fruit, chocolate, and barrel characteristics. Was expecting some alcohol heat to be evident on the nose but it was surprisingly masked well. Can say the same thing about the taste. Expected this to be hot as hell on the alcohol heat due to the high abv (even with 2 yrs on it), but it was a sweet dark fruit-covered chocolates and bourbon flavor. Impressed! Mouthfeel was a bit thin, a little oily, but still had some minor thickness. Overall, I was very impressed and full enjoyed the taste and aroma on this. I wonder what even more aging would do to this. Worth my time!

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.73/5  rDev -16.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I'm a bit disappointed in the merely dark brown body and dinky head (hey, it's 20%). I'm not disappointed in the port-like aroma. Subtle undertones of nuanced bourbon (think vanilla, banana, marshmallow, and even coconut) coexist with intense dark fruit qualities. It's a great nose, though it doesn't quite floor me the way I expected. The flavor profile indeed reveals many similarities to port. It opens with incredible tones of fig, raisin, currant, apricot, cherry, plum, and peach. Around the middle is where the bourbon flavors appear. It ends with a powerful (but complex) malt sweetness, some umami, and an also significant alcohol presence. Though the booze is somewhat harsh, it also creates layers of nuance that help compensate for the insane sweetness. Somewhat. The palate is coated with a ton of residual sugar, and that makes it a SLOOOW sipper. Even a tiring one. I have even more qualms about the somewhat thin and firm feel - it's not well suited to the flavor profile. Still, the zesty carbonation IS suited to the aforementioned thin, firm texture, helping to cleanse the palate ever-so-slightly. I really dig many aspects of this, and it's one of the most complex brews I've ever sampled...but I doubt I could even drink half a bottle. It's just way too sweet, boozy, and over the top at the end of the day. I doubt I'd trade for this again, but I'm happy to have finally tried it.

3.73/5: Insert diabeetus reference here

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Photo of Amguerra305
3.27/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours really thin with almost no head to speak of. The barrel definitely comes through in the nose but not much else except roast. The taste is one hot boozy mess. Super sweet, barrel, anise and booze. No balance at all. Feel is very thin, especially for the abv. Overall this beer is not good and I do not understand what the hype is. Just a hot boozy mess with no balance and flavor clashes.

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Photo of TrojanRB
4.45/5  rDev -0.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2016 bottle, poured 2-7-17

Inky black, little to no head

Smells a bit of candied fruit....prune/plum, some licorice, vanilla

A little more presence of bourbon in the taste...vanilla cream. Excellent

Surprisingly light given the ABV...a little oily, but not too sweet

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Photo of Sour_Lord
4.88/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Don't let the ABV scare you away! When I first saw that this beer was over 19%, I thought it was going to have way too boozy of a flavor for me. However, I was very pleasantly surprised after taking the first gulp! This beer has an incredible flavor and is surprisingly drinkable! But, definitely don't drive after having this one!

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Photo of ragnar3
4.4/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2016 Vintage, poured from the bottle into a taster. Excellent mix of chocolate, dark fruit and barrel. Definitely boozy (as expected at 20% ABV) but was hoping it would be complemented by a more full-bodied feel.

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Photo of deadonhisfeet
4.7/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 5

Enjoyed at a bottle share with friends. We had 2010 through 2016, Madeira, rum, and port versions as well as BT Reserve (and I have pictures to prove it). Each was poured from a bottle into a small tasting glass and this review conveys my general impression of the beer after trying all of these. The pour was nearly black, fairly viscous, and sported very little (if any) carbonation. The nose was all dark chocolate, roasted coffee, toasted oak and bourbon.

Full body with a slick, oily feel and a massive, complex flavor. Lots of chocolate up front, coffee, and bourbon. The bourbon intensifies across the palate and adds a tremendous amount of richness to the flavor. The beer is candy-sweet, but not cloying and incredibly drinkable for such a mammoth beer. The alcohol is quite strong, but is well-balanced by the sweet malt and bitter roast. Finishes warm and rich with notes of vanilla, bourbon, toffee, and a little dark fruit.

A beer that drinks like a liqueur. A masterpiece of the brewer's art, no question about it. Insanely rich and flavorful, yet I could easily drink this all night and not get tire of it (at least until I pass out). The base beer must be incredible because I honestly couldn't tell much of a difference between the regular, port, rum, and madeira Black Tuesdays. It all tastes the same to me - unbelievably great.

 1,349 characters

Photo of jp32
5/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Truly speaking, words couldn't describe how blissful this beer was, but I'll give them a whirl anyway.

Pours perfectly black with a brilliant tan head on top. It's aroma is rich of roasted malts, bourbon, licorice, leather, all coming together in a wonderful, warm, boozy whiff.

Lot of barrel flavors compliment dense flavors of malts, chocolate, molasses, licorice, and caramel. It is easily one of the best tasting beers I've ever tried. Full bodied with a thick but soft mouthfeel. This is pure bliss in a bottle.

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Photo of Nugganooch
4.65/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Huge thanks to mdfb79 for gifting me this bad boy. Cheers Dan!

This was a 2012 vintage Lot 4.3 - aged approximately 3 years
Domed the full bottle – FW snifter glass - 10.06.15

The pour is dark shadowy black body without waiver. Not even some dark brown mixed in. Sits still in my glass with a only small filmy layer of dark tan foam forming over. Even it circles out to a halo rather quickly. Low on the stick factor but with some nice boozy legs to it. Tons of fudgy bourbon soaked chocolate goodness exudes from the glass. Sweet molasses, vanilla-coconut, and dark fruits. The taste is divine as all of the flavors have melded together in lavish decadence. Gourmet style chocolate with hints of coffee, toasted oak, vanilla cream, caramelized sugars, coconut, dark fruit, alcohol, and some loamy earthiness. Full bodied with a richly sleek feel. Not the smoothest beer ever but rather amazing in this moment. The alcohol is ever present and warming but without any obstruction. It actually helps cut back all the sweetness along with some moderate amount of bitterness there. With just 3 years on it this was fan-freaking-tasty! Maturity is where it’s at.

I had generally written this one off to the hype train but this has got to be one of the best dessert beers ever had.

 1,300 characters

Photo of mschrei
4.81/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

For our last beer share of 2016, I brought the Firestone Walker XX tonight and then the host broke out a 2011 bottle of this, so it was a great night. Super smooth. Dark rubyish brown color. Strong barrel scent. Chocolatey, molasses, barrel flavors. Slightly oily feel. Wonderful beer.

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Photo of Absolut
4.66/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2016 version from the Bruery.

pours a dark black with little head.

dark chocolate, figs/ fruits, molasses and bourbon nose. taste is very similar- but hides the booze really well.

super excited to see how my other bottles age

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Photo of BeanBump
4.63/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Had the 2014 edition on tap at The Bruery. Although the 2016 is deceptively smooth in its own right, this well-aged variety is a sleuthy son of a gun. Dark as night but not the least bit bitter. You dont get the alcohol upfront or in the back end. Rather, you get that charming belly warming that you might get from a peated scotch. No wonder this thing is so popular. At around 20% on any given year, this beer tastes much more like something in the 12 - 14% range

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Photo of Buck89
4.34/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was a 2013 vintage poured into a snifter. An opaque black color with a very thin head despite a vigorous pour. Very boozy on the nose: whiskey, cocoa, oak, chocolate, cherries, coffee. The taste followed: this is a huge beer and it showed nicely. Smooth balance between the malt, chocolate, and whiskey. Not overly sweet or viscous for it's ABV. A fantastic sipper.

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Photo of GuyFawkes
4.48/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2013 vintage; drank 6/26/15 @ Golgi Apparatus.

Poured from the bottle into a glass.

Black appearance.

Minimal khaki head; minimal lace.

Marshmallow, cream & milk chocolate notes in the nose.

Thick, sticky mouthfeel.

Marshmallow, brandy & milk chocolate flavors; mild booze heat emerged as this warmed. A thick, tasty dessert treat, perfect for sharing.

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Photo of Hyptochrons
4.61/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

2015 version. nice appearance, dark pour yields a thin head, no lacing. huge on the nose, toffee, caramel, vanilla, roasty malts, char, bourbon ... heavily boozy aroma as it warms. on the palate is decadent sweetness playing with big barrel character that is bold but not overwhelming. notes of bourbon infused chocolate, molasses, raisin, licorice, spice, oak, vanilla, caramel, boooooze. full bodied syrupy feel.

this beer is absolutely incredible. any poor reviews are likely due to folks who dont have tolerance for the biggest high abv brews ... its got some heat to it, but thats to be expected as its a 20% abv beer with ridiculous bourbon notes which is why I bought the beer. drinks more like 14% or so. the huge decadent sweetness coupled with massive barrel character is everything I want in a BA stout, and this brew brings it in a big way.

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Photo of n2185
3.95/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2016 bottle

A: Pours black with half a finger of sudsy khaki head that quickly fades into a thin ring with no lacing.

S: Sweet roasted malts, chocolate, candy sugar, vanilla, molasses, oak, dark fruits (raisins, dates, prunes), and booze.

T: Super sweet chocolate, caramel, and molasses up front with oak and dark fruits and a hugely boozy finish.

M: Thick body with low carbonation, this beer is has a sticky sweet and syrupy feel.

O: A pretty decent beer overall, but I think it would benefit from extensive aging. Super sweet and extremely boozy, it's more like a fortified desert wine or Port.

 609 characters

Photo of FriedSlug
4.86/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

This is a murky, dark brown beer with very little head after an aggressive pour. The head fades quickly and leaves no lacing. The aroma is amazing although I detect things that aren't in the beer. It smells like chocolate, vanilla, honey, cinnamon, bourbon, coffee, and fudge. The taste is sweet, chocolate, vanilla and honey notes with a nice bitterness that tastes like it is from dark chocolate. The booze is detectable in this monster beer but does not stand out and it does bring some het. Less than I would expect in a 19.9% beer. This is a truly amazing beer.

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Photo of passam1
3.15/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

2013 bottle. A 19% stout sounds fun, but I found Black Tuesday borderline undrinkable after even two or three sips. Unless you have a high tolerance for extreme sweetness, I would only recommend opening it in a group of at least four people. For me, it felt like a stunt beer, and was much less enjoyable than the Bourbon Counties and Parabolas of the world.

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Photo of pezhead_79
4.74/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

2015 vintage opened Oct. 2016

Wow, now that is some serious heat. The bourbon in this is intense and very strong. The flavors still shine through (anise, burnt wood) and the vanilla helps to slightly mellow to booziness. Overall, a really strong beer that could have used another year of aging.

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Photo of ChristianAlexander
4.36/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The highest alcohol content beer you may ever drink, this 19% ABV imperial stout is a highly sought beverage in the OC. And just like the show The O.C., this beer is larger than life, populated by good-looking guys and pretty-looking women possessing too much money and too much time and probably prone to killing young teens who are way in over their head (I refer of course to Marissa, who dies in the show (spoiler alert!)). Aged in bourbon barrels, its rich flavor full of caramel, and vanilla, though quite decadent, is actually quite smooth as if to be enjoyed in a smaller tulip glass like a dessert rather than a thirst-quenching porch beer. Drink responsibly, perhaps with a designated backseat driver, and savor the incredibly rich profile while showing your backseat driver how much better your driving is right now, eyes truly awake. Try to detect the subtle wood, bourban, dirt, termite, carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, iron, and magnesium molecules left behind from the barrels it's aged in.

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Photo of Angerhaus
2.54/5  rDev -43.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

I have yet to have a single beer from The Bruery that I felt had warranted any of the hype that the beer and brewery had generated, and Black Tuesday really was no different. It falls into the same vein of so many other barrel aged stouts in that it has that similar coca-cola taste that far too many brewers shoot for. The body is too thin, the taste is overly sweet, the heat picks up in an unsettling manner as it warms, the smell is cloying instead of engaging, and I've already explained the taste.

Please, folks, don't judge this on the difficulty you had getting a bottle, or the hype that everyone else spouts. Instead, take a step back and compare it to other BA stouts. It isn't special, and it doesn't distinguish itself when you set it with other world-class offerings.

Thankfully I did not pay or trade for this, but unfortunately a friend of mine did. Neither of us will make the mistake of looking for this again.

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Photo of Djc410
4.57/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

2015 Black Tuesday 19.9%

The nose is caramel, bourbon, roasted malts. The taste follows suit. Sweet, but not overpowering, great smoothness and balance for the ABV. There's a nuttiness in the background that I really enjoy. I love bourbon notes, and you get a ton of barrel characteristics.

This monster stout pours a dark brown, whiskey coating the glass nicely. Thinner feel, but full of flavor. Overall, this beer still stands up as world class. It changes the way you see stouts, and very few beers can do that.

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Photo of LloydDobler
4.32/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

2015 -19.9%ABV

This poured out a dark and slightly murky brown with a thin foam cap that fizzled away quickly. Looks more like a bourbon barrel aged barleywine than a stout. The nose was sweet. Raisins and mash dominate. Taste is sweet as well, but not off putting. Just plain, thin feel. The fact that this is an enormous ABV leads me to believe that it will be somewhat "hot", but it isn't at all. I could have easily blindly placed this in the 8-11% range. Pretty enjoyable overall.

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Black Tuesday from The Bruery
4.47 out of 5 based on 3,836 ratings.
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