Sea Monster Imperial Stout (Bourbon Barrel Aged) | Ballast Point Brewing Company

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69 Ratings

Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: English Oatmeal Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Floydster on 10-21-2007

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 69 |  Reviews: 17
Reviews by spamages:
Photo of spamages
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%

More User Reviews:
Photo of glid02
3.83/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Downtown Johnny Brown's in San Diego. Listed at 10.0% ABV.

Pours black with a half-finger tan head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells of muted roasted malts with hints of briny bourbon and lighter hints of unsweetened chocolate.

Tastes very similar to how it smells. Dry roasted malt flavors kick things off. Midway through the sip the flavor profile opens up a bit with good amounts of dark chocolate and bourbon and milder amounts of smoke. The smoky bourbon flavors carry through to a mildly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is OK. It's got a decent thickness but the carbonation is a bit on the heavy side.

Drinkability is good. I didn't have a problem finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall I was hoping for more from this beer. Certainly not worth turning down but a bit of a letdown given BP's track record. Still, worth a shot if you see it on.

 911 characters

Photo of acurtis
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of ste5venla
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of augustgarage
3.6/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

On tap 10/19/2009 @ The Daily Pint in Santa Monica, CA. Served in a St. Bernardus chalice. Listed as "Bourbon Barrel Aged," the bartender specified Jack Daniel's (which isn't a bourbon technically, due to it being charcoal filtered, but whatever) barrels were used. This is not the blended version.

The liquid is a lightless seething abyss, approaching asphalt in color. A single tan sticky skin of foam persists, much like thinned out cake frosting. Very persistent collar and lacing when swirled.

Alcohol assaults the senses, though prunes, raisins, and stale coffee linger behind the wave of booze. The alcohol smells sooty and sour, a pungent and commanding wave without quite smelling like solvent.

Young bourbon, vanilla, burnt sugar, tobacco and espresso on the palate - cocoa powder, oak, and hops in the finish. Sour and bitter notes make this closer to a RIS than an AIS.

Medium-heavy bodied, though lighter than I was expecting. Moderate carbonation. Very warming...borderline hot, really. Creamy but rather astringent. Stand up too quickly and you'll realize this one goes right to your head.

A unique and potent aroma and flavor profile, though not for the faint of heart or barrel-age novice. For a sipping beer, I wish it were aged in sipping whiskey barrels as it is quite harsh compared to some similar offerings by Brewdog for example.

 1,360 characters

Photo of jmccraney
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of Kegatron
4.38/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Ballast Point (Old Grove location) on 3/16/09. Served in a pint glass. The board indicated that this was aged 3 months in 25 year old Fitzgerald whiskey barrels.

Pours a dense black, with a finger of burnt colored mocha head. Retains with a thin creamy layer that just absolutely COATS the sides of the glass with sticky foam. The aroma is deep smelling with chocolate sweetness, lots of roasted malt, and a good bit of coffee thrown in for good measure. The barrel notes seem a bit more subdued in the nose than I would have though. Hints of light oak, vanilla, and whiskey. They are definitely there but don't overpower the nose, instead nicely complimenting the more assertive Stout flavors.

The taste is very similar, with big roasted malt flavors, a deep sticky chocolate sweetness, and a solid undercurrent of roasted coffee character. Bitterness from the roast and coffee combines with much more assertive notes of whiskey and oak in the back to end things with a dry and lingering bitter feel that just STICKS in the mouth. Wow! The mouthfeel is full bodied with a big creamy feel that just fills the mouth, along with more of a viscous undercurrent that carries all of that sweetness and whiskey character with it. The majority of the warmth that I'm getting in this is actually more from the barrel than the ABV (which at 10% ABV) is very nicely hid.

Sweet! This was a rare treat to enjoy on tap and I most wholeheartedly enjoyed it! I would have liked to have seen a little more evenness between the Stout and barrel flavors in the nose but the balance in the taste and massive body and overall feel on this was great!

 1,645 characters

Photo of Bunuelian
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of mdillon86
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of skunk242
2.75/5  rDev -32.1%

3.96/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Draft pour into a 10.5oz tulip for $6. Sampled 1/15/11.

A: Scant finger of medium dark brown, dense creamy head. Excellent retention. Slow receding throws down a contiguous sheet of lacing. Black as hell, and opaque everywhere except at the bottom of the glass, where a dark ruby-amber mix shows through.

S: Very bright, clean whiskey aroma dominates the nose bringing strong notes of vanillin which is most noticeable at colder temps. Barrel and dark fruitiness comes into play as the beer warms. The aroma is a little one dimensional, mostly because the intensity of the barrel and booze cast most of the subtleties aside.

T: The taste doesn't stray terribly far from the nose. The sweet malt character is more distinguishable, bringing in roasty flavors of chocolate, coffee and the slightest hint of cola. There are light notes of solventy alcohol but the flavor is very smooth - approachable even - for the whiskey monster that it is.

M: Lush and supple with a full body. The texture is slick yet semi-syruppy and with the right amount of cloy to keep the flavors lasting long.

D: Pleased to have sampled this one and would be happy to order again in the future.

 1,172 characters

Photo of Hopsiam14
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of Blanco
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of NittanyBeerFan
4.67/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this one up at Teresa's Ballast Point event on June 28, 2009.

A: Pours a deep opaque black with a very thin layer of extremely coarse bubbly head that quickly fades to nothing. Head is gone and the beer is sitting there smooth and inviting long before I get a chance to sip it.

S: Kentucky Bourbon and dark chocolate malts greet the nose, bringing some bittersweet coffee notes along for the ride.

T: Think of the flavor profile as bourbon --> RIS --> bourbon + RIS. A mild, well-aged smooth bourbon taste fills the front of the palate. Couples later with bittersweet chocolate and coffee flavored malts. These slowly give way to undertones of vanilla, espresso and dark chocolate. The bourbon then reappears at the end, mixing perfectly with the standard RIS flavors, and follows your palate in the aftertaste. Nicely balanced flavor, with no single element stealing too much of your focus.

M/D: Completely smooth, with a medium to heavy texture. The complexity of this beer is astounding. The three stage flavor really does it for me. Thoroughly enjoyable. However, due to the high ABV, it would be hard to drink too many of these. I would go for two easily, though.

 1,185 characters

Photo of MrHirschybar
4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1st Beer I had at Port's Barrel Blast

A - Dark Black with a mocha lined head that left a little lacing

S - First smell was of boozy alcohol followed by Bourbon, Vanilla, and an oak presence

T - Strong Chocolate with Vanilla, and bourbon that came through in the finish with little to no heat

M - Light, low carbonation, no alcohol heat in the finish, very smooth

D - Very smooth, light and drinkable, almost no heat detected for being 10%.

 445 characters

Photo of Drink_LocalSD
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of jinan
3.48/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Too over the top, ruining a good stout

38 characters

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

Photo of ystazi
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of Drucifer
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of curlybird
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of crob3888
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Kaydogg
5/5  rDev +23.5%

Photo of atone315
4.21/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of VanHorneDog
4.44/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap the other night at their Larger Location in Scripps Ranch.

A - very dark with a nice brown head. lingers for a while then fades. Nice lacing.

S - my favorite part about this beer, the bourbon barrel really shines through and roasted barley and chocolate fill it out. The smell of alcohol persists.

T - a very strong flavor. the bourbon comes through. Its main body is roasty with hints of dark berries. There is some chocolate and not much coffee flavour behind it all. it does not come through as burnt.

M - fuller bodied but not the fullest there could be, you can tell it has a higher alcohol content (in the 10s) because it seems to cut into the beer.

D - i can have two of these, anymore and i would be on the floor. I love dark beers, but most people cannot handle more than half a pint of thi. So, i think its drinkable, but for those not accustom to imperial stouts or porters this probably isn't going to be one you put back.

i have also had this one on Nitro on tap, and i must say that was a treat.

 1,033 characters

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Sea Monster Imperial Stout (Bourbon Barrel Aged) from Ballast Point Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.05 out of 5 with 69 ratings