Huge Arker | Anderson Valley Brewing Company

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91
outstanding
346 Ratings
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Huge ArkerHuge Arker
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Anderson Valley Brewing Company
California, United States
avbc.com

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 13.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Bourbon Barrel-aged Russian Imperial Stout.

Added by chinchill on 01-29-2014

BEER STATS
Ratings:
346
Reviews:
78
Avg:
4.13
pDev:
9.69%
 
 
Wants:
23
Gots:
126
For Trade:
6
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 346 |  Reviews: 78
Photo of acurtis
3.45/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Photo of kylehay2004
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%

Photo of GRG1313
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of jaydoc
4.28/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.93/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

On tap at Yard House in Northridge, CA.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, wood, and huge bourbon aromas. Taste is much the same with cocoa and bourbon flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roast and wood bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty but super bourbon forward, especially in the taste.

 596 characters

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.5/5  rDev -15.3%

Photo of BEERchitect
4.09/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

In comparison of all the arkers that I know, there are small ones, there are large ones, there are medium-sized ones, but this one is huge!

Just a shade off of black, the dark "bark" brown hue is laced with powdered cocoa appearances. Its dense haze prevents any light as its cauldron simmers with a creamy lather of espresso-like creme to top glass. Trailing with mild fingerling lace, the stout is masculine and calm.

Its robust scent of charred toast, french-roast coffee and dark chocolate is moderately strong even though there's a somber tone to its intensity. With a growing bourbon presence, the nose is soon under command of its oak, caramel, vanilla, light coconut and its own spicy char. Woven together with malted milk, roasted nuts and subtle campfire, the bourbon and roast pull together seamlessly.

Its decadent taste of coffee, chocolate, nuts and toast are supported with toasted caramel, milkshake and cake batter-type of sweetness and breadiness. Again, it mid-intense flavor is smooth and cream filled. But the rise of bourbon carries a classy taste with its whisky-soaked oak, vanillans and and wood spices that offset the beer's lavish taste to start.

Creamy and lush in texture, its tightly woven carbonation dissolves deeply into the stout's sweetness and is slow to separate. This silky texture remains in tact deep into taste and lifts only as the bourbon spice and warmth dissect the marshmallowy feel and allow the wood spices to dry the palate like fine powder.

Huge Arker is a deceptively smooth bourbon-laced stout. There's' really no indication to its powerful strength as it plays out with remarkable drinkability on the tongue and palate. I don't know what an Arker is.

 1,709 characters

Photo of biboergosum
3.98/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle, and a little dear a shelf tag for my impression thus far of barrel-aged expressions from this brewery. So it remains to be seen what particular sort of 'huge arker' (bomb) this one will be. Onwards, then.

This beer pours a solid tinted black, with strong cola basal highlights, and three fingers of puffy, densely foamy, and rocky tan head, which leaves some random splatters of dried soapy lace around the glass as it easily abates.

It smells of gritty bittersweet chocolate, well-roasted caramel malt, wet brown bread, besotted wood, cheap rye whiskey, weak black licorice, muddled black fruit, a bit of raw vanilla, and a musty hoppiness. The taste is heady medium baker's cocoa, caramel/toffee malt, doughy bread, mixed vanilla/licorice confection, rather intact boozy Bourbon (wood, spicy grain, alcohol, mostly), mild earthy dark fruit, say prunes and raisins, and a subtle leafy, weedy hop dryness.

The carbonation is quite soft and hard to discern at times, but it does the job, the body a wavering medium weight for the style, a tad oily, but generally smooth, with a certain boozy creaminess arising as things warm. It finishes well off-dry, the chocolate and nicely subdued caramel still holding court, with that shot o' Wild Turkey finally having found the good sense to mix 'n mingle.

Well, this is quite the improvement over the 'regular' BBA Wild Turkey offering - here, the demon whiskey wood mostly contributes well-rendered Kentucky rotgut flavour to the underlying RIS, and none of the mouthfeel-thinning experience endemic in this one's little brother. Tasty, huge (the English word), and yet fairly balanced, as the 27-proof alcohol is evident, sure, but not nearly as hot as many sub-10 percenters in the same bracket. So, more of a bomb with a slowly hissing fuse, the end result merely pleasantly sinful fireworks.

 1,855 characters

Photo of zeff80
4.06/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a jet-black color with a small, tan head of foam. It smelled of bourbon, oak, vanilla and roasted malt. Flavors of dark chocolate, roasted malt, vanilla and oak.

 168 characters

Photo of largadeer
3.5/5  rDev -15.3%

Photo of zestar
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%

Photo of superspak
4.2/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle into snifter; no bottle dating, but is a recent release. Pours pitch black color with a 2 finger dense and rocky tan head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Dense soapy lacing clings around the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Fantastic appearance. Aromas of big milk/dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, bourbon, caramel, toffee, molasses, vanilla, coconut, toasted oak, dark bread, raisin, plum, light smoke/char, and roast/oak earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of dark/roast/bready malt and bourbon barrel notes; with great strength. Taste of big milk/dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, bourbon, caramel, toffee, molasses, vanilla, coconut, toasted oak, dark bread, raisin, plum, light smoke/char, and roast/oak earthiness. Moderate roast/char bitterness and bourbon/oak spiciness on the finish; with lingering notes of chocolate, cocoa, coffee, bourbon, caramel, toffee, molasses, vanilla, coconut, toasted oak, dark bread, dark fruit, smoke, char, and roast/oak earthiness on the finish for a while. Incredible complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roast/bready malt and bourbon barrel flavors; with a great roasted bitter/sweet and bourbon/oak spiciness balance; and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Light-moderate dryness from roast bitter and oak spiciness as well. Light-medium carbonation and medium-full body; with a smooth, moderately creamy/silky, and sticky/chalky balanced mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is fairly well hidden with a light-moderate warmth and light barrel booziness lingering after the finish. Overall this is an outstanding barrel aged Russian imperial stout. All around awesome complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roast/bready malt and bourbon barrel flavors; and very smooth and easy to sip on for the huge ABV, even with the warming barrel notes. Really big on the barrel presence, but not overdone at all. A highly enjoyable offering.

 1,996 characters

Photo of mothman
3.94/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a tan head. Leaves a lot of lace. Color is pretty much black.

Flavors: nothing out of the ordinary here. A heavy dose of whiskey. Some oak and vanilla with molasses. Roasted malts with hints of coffee. Lots of chocolate and caramel. Finishes with a huge dose of alcohol.

Mouthfeel: smooth, hot, and creamy. Full bodied.

Overall, a solid ba stout, but a bit too hot. Still, very enjoyable.

 398 characters

Photo of nickfl
3.94/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Wow, the aroma is mild but there is a huge note of wild turkey bourbon in the flavor. Very distinctly wild turkey, which may or may not be a good thing but is nevertheless impressive. A little cola like overall, but the over the top ABV is relatively well disguised.

 267 characters

Photo of chinchill
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%

Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.06/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

On-tap 7/16/2016 at Natty Greene’s Tavern in North Attleboro, MA, served in a tulip glass.

A: The beer is a deep black color, with a large dense beige head that fades slowly and leaves a very thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains bourbon, roasted malts, dark fruit, licorice, some chocolate and a faint touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out sweet with strong flavors of bourbon, licorice, dark fruit and chocolate. Then a hearty roasted malt character comes in. The hops presence is very mild as expected and there’s very little hint of the 13.50% ABV. The after-taste is sweet.

M: Crisp and very smooth, medium-to-heavy body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down dangerously easy, slightly filling, very strong well-disguised kick, very good representation of style, this is a very good big stout to sip on for a long time.

 873 characters

Photo of wethorseblanket
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of mendvicdog
3.27/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of Ciocanelu
4.65/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Really dark brown color with creamy, mocha head. Aroma is full-on bourbon, caramel, fudge and butterscotch. Taste follows with the fudge and caramel, chocolate cake, bourbon and a roasty bitter finish. Slightly boozy but it's not bothering at all. Full bodied, smooth mouthfeel with just the right amount of carbonation. A really well made bourbon barrel aged imperial stout which I think should get more attention.

 415 characters

Photo of Gagnonsux
4.31/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of smithj4
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%

Photo of russpowell
3.75/5  rDev -9.2%

Pours a turbid ebony with a thumb of tan head. Great lacing & head retention, never
really drops bright ( as far as this style can ). Stays effervescent (4.5)

S: Figs, faint booze, Bourbon gets stronger once warm (3.5)

T: Raisins, booze, dryness, Bourbon & figs up front. Some caramel & vanilla mix in with figgyness
once warm, a little molasses, some jammyness too almost makes me think Boulevard BBQ. Finishes
boozey with some woody notes, more figs (3.75)

MF: Medium body at best, slight carbonation, very warming, slick (3.5)

Huge beer, proceed with caution. Tasty enough, just needed more Stout aspects to make me
really happy. Well worth a go though (3.75)

 679 characters

Photo of drewone
3.5/5  rDev -15.3%

Photo of vfgccp
3.75/5  rDev -9.2%

Photo of millerbuffoon
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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Huge Arker from Anderson Valley Brewing Company
4.13 out of 5 based on 346 ratings.
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