Bourbon Barrel Imperial Stout
Marble Brewery

Bourbon Barrel Imperial StoutBourbon Barrel Imperial Stout
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Stout - American Imperial
Ranked #939
Ranked #3,264
4.19 | pDev: 9.07%
Marble Brewery
New Mexico, United States
Bourbon Barrel Imperial StoutBourbon Barrel Imperial Stout
Reviews: 27 | Ratings: 124 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of lordofthewiens
lordofthewiens from New Mexico

4.21/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The beer is black in color with a very tiny tan head.
Nice aroma: booze, coffee, some chocolate, some vanilla.
Bourbon taste, espresso, dark chocolate, vanilla. Late hint of leather.
A little bit on the thin side, but still an impressive beer.

Nov 21, 2020
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REVZEB from Illinois

4.21/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Had on tap. Surprised to see this as low as it is, I really thought marble did well to craft a stout that took on the wood and bourbon from the barrel without losing its original identity of chocolate, smooth creamy malt, molasses, caramel, and some dark fruits. Certainly light on the spectrum of stout, but has a refined sense about it. Not too sweet, not too heavy, just about right for a lighter ba stout

Dec 20, 2018
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rodbeermunch from Nevada

3.88/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Thanks to leftpaw who brought a few of these out, given all the bets he lost and was paying up and shit. But we drank one, and now, like 5 years later, I still have another one stashed.

Pours an equal parts brown and black, you've seen darker, you've seen ones more in line with the brown descriptor. Thin brown head 1/4". Aroma goes with wood before bourbon, and still some residual roasting notes present. Chocolate unsweetened.

Taste is on the lighter side of barrel treatment, whereas some are going as high as 3 years in a barrel now, this one seems to be 6 months or less. Which is just fine, you still pull plenty of roasted malt notes from the base beer here, and it has a knack for hiding alcohol quite well, but not quite to the extent those world class ones do. Price seems quite affordable on these. While it doesn't ascend to levels associated with say Eclipse, it also is about half the price, and almost just as good.

Jan 16, 2018
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StonedTrippin from Colorado

4.13/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

there is a lot to like about this one from marble, along with the especial double ipa, it was my favorite beer i had in here when i visited. the lighter barrel treatment allows the drinker to easily appreciate how good the base stout is in its own right, its not masked too much by oak, barrel char, or whiskey, although all of that is present here, its more refined than most, more exposed, which is much to its credit. huge chocolate profile to this, almost like there has to be some added, but im fairly certain its all from the grain. its big and creamy and back and forth between sweet and bitter, roasty and rich, but also earthy and more like a baking chocolate, really layered and nice. some molasses element to this ties it together well, and a sort of cola complexion brings up the bourbon, which has some nice vanilla nuance and a sturdy wood element, but doesnt dominate in aroma or in flavor. this is silky smooth going down too, hardly a trace of alcohol, and not syrupy or sticky for how much body it has. an excellent stout for the cold weather, but also something i would drink year round if it were available. technically really well done, and the flavors just work. really enjoyable glass of beer here!

Jan 15, 2018
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arizcards from North Carolina

4.29/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Picked up a bomber at BevMo in early October for $13.49. 1/12/16 bottling date visible on the bottom of bottle #141.

Beer poured black as night with a beautiful tan head that has some great hang time and is leaving some lacing.

Nose has hints of barrel, espresso, and mocha.

Taste is a touch of warming bourbon with cocoa and espresso on top of a large malt base balanced nicely by a generous amount of hops that keeps sweetness at bay.

Mouthfeel is full, very smooth and satisfying.

Overall this was a very nice find that i would highly recommend!

Dec 11, 2016
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ISmith87 from Arizona

4.43/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Really good barrel aged imperial stout. Brown black color without much head or lacing. Smell is oak, smoke, bourbon, espresso. Taste is chocolate, Bourbon, oak, smoky, hot fudge. Mouth feel thick, alc covered, aftertaste chocolate. Great beer. Not as amazing as Parabola but on the better end of ba stouts.

Apr 19, 2014
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ONovoMexicano from New Mexico

4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had a couple of these at Marble Brewery's Imperial Stout release party yesterday (11-20-13).

The beer came in a tulip-shaped glass (13 oz.)

The beer had a perfect, finger thick, khaki-colored head over a beautiful pour of dark, oil-like liquid. The head was chewy and pillow-like and persisted for about a minute before dissipating.

The beer's smell was immediately deep, dark malts with some oakinesss to boot. The high abv of 11% is very well masked.

The beer has lots of different tastes, with the dark malt and chocolate notes hitting my palate first. There's a slight, bourbon-like booziness, hints of plum and coffee and a lingering cocoa taste at the finish.

Though the booze is present, it's not overbearing or burning. The beer has a very viscous, smooth feel to it. It drinks far too easily for the high alcohol content, so one must be careful to pace themselves or set a limit.

This is a superb beer and one I'll need to get more and more of over these winter months.

Nov 21, 2013
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ocelot2500 from Maryland

4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep ebony color with a quickly fading, mocha head that leaves a ring of lacing.

Smells of chocolate, vanilla, and molasses notes.

Tastes of bourbon notes off the bat leading into a nice roasted malt character. Vanilla and a slight oaken character come through first. This then leads into a plethora of dark malt flavors. Chocolate, coffee, anise, figs, and molasses come through backed up by some brown sugar sweetness. Touches of dark caramel come through before a warm ending.

Mouthfeel is full with a smooth amount of carbonation.

Overall, this is a very tasty bourbon aged stout with plenty to like about it.

Sep 19, 2013
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jeonseh from Indiana

3.26/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

A - Dark chocolate beer with small mocha foam layer and small bubbles on the sides

S - Milk chocolate, vanilla, light caramel, slight sweet cream and light roasted malt

T - Roasted malt with a ton if booze and bourbon. Slight bourbon sweetness but there is lots of alcoholic bite that really over takes the rest of the beer and becomes the only thing I could taste. Good amount of oak near the finish.

M - Medium thick body with an astringent finish from the booze

O - Boozy stout with too much barrel that overwhelms the base stout. The strong alcoholic presence gives it a slight kick and makes it astringent overall

May 16, 2013
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rboinski from California

3.98/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured into a red wine glass

Appearance: Pours a deep black with a dark tan had, which fades to an tiny offwhite ring.

Smell: Smell is predominately of bourbon, with barrel notes of vanilla on the finish. Not really smelling any of the typical stout flavors.

Taste: Taste again is mostly of bourbon. Not getting too much subtlety, but a good bourbon taste none the less.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is a little good, but I would appreciate more of a creamy flavor.

Overall: A good bourbon foreword beer, but I was hoping for more complexity.

May 13, 2013
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Auraan from Arizona

4.58/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a jet black with a two finger tan head that stuck around. Scents of chocolate, roast malt and dark coffee. The usual IS scent profile. Flavor followed this chocolate, dark chocolate, black coffee and a slight tinge of alcohol with a bit of malt sweetness and a bit of roast malt. Some barrel character, but not a whole lot. Mouthfeel is thick, sticky and heavy, with low carbonation. Quite easy to drink. Very true to style. A good Imperial Stout out of New Mexico, well worth trying if you get the chance.

Apr 21, 2013
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Treebs from Illinois

3.79/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

22 oz. waxed bottle served in a Jester King chalice. Thanks to eorwar for the share!

A: Pours a dark black color with a light tan head forming on the pour. Dissipates to a thin film that leaves some soapy looking lace down the glass.

S: Pretty barrel heavy with some notes of bourbon, coconut and tootsie roll. Very sweet initially on the smell.

T: Same as the nose. Very barrel forward. Bourbon with a heavy roasted malt bill. Light vanilla and coconut with some caramel sweetness. Heavy fudge with some tootsie roll sweetness. A little hot, but nothing out of line with 11% ABV.

M: Medium bodied with a medium carbonation level. A little oily as well. Smooth and sweet finish.

O: A little rough around the edges, but still a very solid beer. A think this needs some time to integrate a little more. I'm interested to try the Marble Reserve at this point.

Apr 07, 2013
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largadeer from California

4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Batch 1. Bottle from GHB. Thanks!

Dark brown bordering on black, topped by two fingers of tan foam. Great nose, lot of toasted coconut, dark chocolate, licorice, caramel and bourbon. Very integrated, balanced aroma with plenty of richness. Palate is similarly excellent; there's a ton of chocolate and caramel, big bourbon notes, some heat from the barrel. Slight coconut and oak tannins, a little vanilla toward the finish. Oaky and drying on the back end with a full, silky body. This is surprisingly excellent, I'd gladly drink this any time.

Feb 22, 2013
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ArrogantB from Colorado

3.7/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Shout to egadbananas for sending me this. Dark black color, appearance is easy. Aroma is a bit of malt chocolate milk balls, whoppers yo. Flavor was oddly not heavy barrel, mostly imperial stout with a bit of wood at the finish. I like a subtle beer and I liked it when bourbon barrel beers are not dominated by booze but this was too subtle. More barrel please. I actually think the Marble Reserve was much better and had a better barrel character.

Feb 09, 2013
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thebigredone from Wisconsin

3/5  rDev -28.4%

Tried this fresh, didn't understand how it was rated so highly. Saved one, tried it with a couple years on it, and it was worse. Harsh oak and ashy finish. Not worth seeking out.

Jan 31, 2013
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maximum12 from Minnesota

3.91/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to GHB for this bottle, the final survivor of another good trade box. If it's as good as the other brews from Marble, I'll be well pleased. 22 oz. bottle split with my wife.

Pours is dark, dead black with only sparks of frizzy life. Nose, well, is there something wrong with my nose tonight? Not getting much. Sweetness, gentle barrel. OK, my wife concurs, I haven't suffered any nasal trauma. Whew.

Marble Bourbon Barrel Imperial Stout is a brew that needs some serious warming. Cold out of the fridge this is routine, but opens like a Paula Abdul video as it warms. Nicely roasted that treads the edge of coffee territory, before the vanilla sweetness & malt eases into the snapshot. Caramel. oak that dries out the after-image. Thick & lovely, but I won 't have any problem putting my half down to rest.

This is the kind of beer that one could easily overlook. Not in your face, just a good, solid beer that's had a subtle shiv of barrel tagged on. I like. Excellent beer.

Dec 30, 2012
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rodlavers from Maryland

4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tap at the brew pub in Santa Fe

Pours virtually all black with absolutely no head. There are some tinges of red, but not terribly noticeable. Looks a bit thin.

Smells rich in coffee, chocolate and roast, but light on the bourbon and vanilla, which is completely fine. Molasses flavors as well.

Taste is similar to smell, but much sweeter, and more boozy, served ice cold needs to warm and improves as such.

Mouthfeel is smooth and light, not super thick, but a bit hoppy. ABV is not particularly well-hidden, rendering the beer very warming.

Overall this is an excellent surprise. Had no idea I'd find this gem in Santa Fe. It's not my favorite BBA Imperial Stout, but it's very good, as I am partial to the style. Must try for those in the area looking for good beer. Cheers.

Dec 30, 2012
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BobZ from Massachusetts

4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance: Jet black with a nice frothy bright tan head of about 1” which quickly recedes to about a ¼”. Very nice lacing.

Smell: Big chocolate with some roasted malt and a “hint” of bourbon, the bourbon aroma seems to unlock as the beer warms.

Taste: Nice cold but this beer is at its best when it warms. Really excellent combination of chocolate and vanilla from the bourbon. The oaky vanilla is extremely subtle as are all of the bourbon characteristics. Personally, I find it refreshing to have a bourbon barrel beer that is not “up front” with the bourbon. The flavor is woven into the beer as just another element of complexity. I only was able to pick up some coffee flavor as the chocolate is really dominant (in a good way) with this beer.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and creamy yet clean on the finish.

Overall: Really delicious example of a Barrel Aged Imperial Stout, definitely one worth trying if you get the chance.

Dec 16, 2012
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Arbitrator from California

4.14/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Chilled bottle into a glass. Thanks, Chris.

A: Pours a dark, oily black with imposing dark mocha head. Retention is slight; the beer maintains just the smallest ring of bubbles around the edge after all is said and done.

S: When the beer was just out of the fridge -- cold but not too chilled -- no one except Chris could pick up any bourbon barrel notes (and even then, only because he read the label, I think). I still couldn't detect them while knowing to look for them, until the beer warmed up for 20-30 minutes. Then the subtlety of the barrel-aging became obvious. The base beer brings anise, molasses, and chocolate to the table; bourbon lends a lesser caramel-vanilla aroma on the back end. It is well-integrated, and those who don't want a bourbon-forward imperial stout will find a lot to appreciate here.

T: Same pattern when cold: no bourbon detectable. Given how most popular barrel-aged stouts are trending toward the barrel-forward direction, this is definitely an oddball -- but a good one. The base beer itself is a solid imperial stout; more chocolate- and anise-forward than roasted grains or coffee (though both are found), with a sweet molasses presence at times. As it warms, bourbon emerges slowly and contributes a back-end caramel and vanilla sweetness. It's never very tannic in the finish, but it finishes cleanly enough that it doesn't really need it.

M: Full-bodied; while thick and chewy, the beer isn't very sticky, making for a clean finish. The ABV is pretty well masked.

O: A surprise stunner.

Sep 22, 2012
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4DAloveofSTOUT from Illinois

4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

reviewed from notes 5/10/12.

thanks to egrace84 for a share of this brew!

poured into tulip.

Appearance: black bodied beer with 1 finger of tan colored head. The beer has some nice legs to it.

Smell: Oak, whiskey, roasty, and fruity. A really unique nose for a barrel aged stout.

Taste: Big notes of molasses and black licorice. Its a little chocolately. A warming whiskey kick in the finish.

Mouthfeel: medium to full bodied beer with low carbonation. Creamy, silky, and smooth brew.

Overall: This is an interesting and unique BA stout. It really stands out from the crowd.

May 11, 2012
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Duff27 from Illinois

4.42/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

dark brown/black body with a nice collar.

Nose is more wood, some sweet fruitiness. Loving the smell.

Well blended complexity. Bourbon barrel melds deliciously with base stout. Mostly chocolately. Yum.

Real full, thick, chewy mouthfeel.

Totally under the rated -bal stout right here. I almost don't want to talk about how nice this beer is just so I may be able to trade for more someday. Thanks egrace84!

May 11, 2012
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brentk56 from North Carolina

4.39/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a pitch black color capped by a thick tan head;
the retention was excellent and the lacing streaked here and there

Smell: Rich bourbon barrel aromatics overwhelm, bringing anise and molasses elements along with the booze and vanilla

Taste: The bourbon flavors dominate from the outset, driving the graham cracker, molasses and anise flavors into mid-palate when the chocolate and coffee flavors arrive to remind the taste buds that this is, in fact, a beer here; a bit more balanced, after the swallow, but there is plenty of the barrel that lingers in the aftertaste

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with low to moderate carbonation

Overall: If ever there was a beer that demanded to be cellared, this is the one; in fact, the scores mint be higher in five years than they are today

Thanks, sunkistxsudafed, for the opportunity

Feb 17, 2012
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zac16125 from South Carolina

4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured on tap from the Marble Brewpub in Albuquerque
written from notes taken on 12/3/2011

A: Jet black with just under 2 fingers of dark mocha colored head, which has good retention but leaves very little lacing.

S: Coffee, chocolate, oak, some vanilla, and a whiskey hint that becomes more prominent throughout the drink. Quite pleasant aroma.

T: Very complex with a lot going on in the flavor profile. There is tons of chocolate and coffee. There is also a big whiskey character, which at times becomes slightly dominant but then balances out. Other flavors noted are a woody character, smoky flavors, both milk and bakers chocolate, a hint of hop bitterness, and an alcohol presence. Fantastic.

M/D: Full bodied, appropriately low carbonation, smooth with a slick mouthfeel. Very good job of masking the 11% ABV. As long as you’re a whiskey fan you could certainly drink multiple ones (although the brewpub says a limit of 2 per session!)

O: Overall, an excellent IS. Truly a surprise, and much more than I was expecting. IMO topped by only a select few of the finest RIS’s I have had. A must try, and if you are a whiskey fan (which I may add I am not) you will certainly LOVE this brew.

Jan 22, 2012
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oline73 from Maryland

4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this at a tasting this weekend. Poured into my Chimay goblet.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown color with some red coming through at the edge of the pour. There is a layer of fluffy off white head that fades to a ring around the edge of the pour.

Smell: This beer is quite sweet and full of very smooth roast. I'm picking up some cocoa along with mild bourbon. There may be a little caramel from the barrel.

Taste: Smooth bourbon and full of roast. The roast isn't very bitter or biting at all. The bourbon barrel has added some caramel and vanilla to the flavor as well.

Mouthfeel: The body is thick and syrupy with smooth carbonation and a slick finish.

Overall: I had never heard of this until it showed up at the tasting. I'm extremely glad I got to try it. There was lots of great flavor and very little bite. I would definitely have this one again in the future.

Jan 16, 2012
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crusian from Oregon

4.45/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

bottle from amcmaho1, thanks man!!

didnt really expect much on this, but holy shit.
pours a nice thick black with about a half finger of head with curtains all over the sides as it recedes.
smell is wonderful, a light bourbon peppered with chocolate, oak, vanilla and coffee. The bourbon is not over powering, and takes a back seat, which is really nice. Too many bourbon barreled beers are all bourbon on the nose.
Taste is quite good too, same as the nose, up front you have the chocolate and coffee and finishes with an amazing vanilla and bourbony oakness. A hint of booze in the aftertaste, but man, not much at all.
My only complaint, and it is a small one, is the body. I am so spoiled on Cigar city thickness that I want that for all my big stouts now. It is still one of the heavier bodies for the style, but it would be near perfect if it was thicker.
This is a damn fine beer, and I am glad I was able to get my hands on some... now... how do I get more?

Jan 14, 2012
Bourbon Barrel Imperial Stout from Marble Brewery
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 124 ratings