Tongue Buckler (Bourbon Barrel Aged) | Ballast Point Brewing Company

51 Ratings

Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by womencantsail on 04-14-2011

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 51 |  Reviews: 17
Photo of spycow
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%

Photo of SocalKicks
4/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of DrBier
4/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of Thorpe429
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Capone's. Served in a snifter.

Pours a slightly-hazed dark amber color with a single-finger white head that sticks around for just a bit before falling into a thin cap, leaving some spotted white lacing on the sides of the glass. The nose carries strong hops with just a bit of bourbon. Pine and floral hops, mostly. Some earthiness there as well.

The flavor works wonders in combining the bourbon and the hops. It's one of the first bourbon or oaked IPAs that I've really enjoyed. There's a light bourbon presence and I'm thinking this has to be a second or third-use of a barrel given how light it is. It provides a nice creaminess to the feel as well. In the foreground is plenty of piney hops with a bit of an earthy character. Bitter finish. Really well done.

 776 characters

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

On tap @ Capone’s (Norristown, PA) on 6/9/11. Served in a goblet.

Pours a deep, hazed, ruby, with a thin cap of off-white head. This retains with some nice looking robust edging, leaving back a creamy cascade of foamy lacing. The aroma is floral and oaky, which is layered on top of notes of sharp pine, tropical fruit, vanilla, caramel, and bread. Some alcohol heat sits tight across the back of the nose. This is an overall fairly decadent smelling mix of hops, malt, and barrel and it’s got some power behind it.

The taste has a LOT of vanilla flavor to it, with works in a wonderful tandem with the bright citrus flavors (orange in particular stands out) that are present. Strong grapefruit and pine still add some aggressiveness to this though but are mostly backed by a combo of roast and caramel character from the malt. Dry oak and hops just parch the finish on this but it’s mostly a burnt and bitter feel here that lingers the most. The mouthfeel is fuller bodied, with a strong assertive sharpness to the carbonation. A sweet slickness still helps keep this mostly smooth thoughout and I must that this drinks VERY nicely for a BA 10% beer. There is some beefy power to the profiles but the alcohol never gets too warm or distracting.

After being disappointed in the regular Tongue Buckler, this barrel-aged version more than makes up for that beer, with those oak flavors in particular really working nicely with the hop and malt flavors that are present. This was just really delicious and accessible and I could have easily gone for another glass of this if other beers hadn’t beckoned as well.

 1,622 characters

Photo of mikesgroove
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

really happy to be able to try this one, i cracked it open before we lit the firewoks.

nice dark orange color with a huge head of white that capped the top rather nicely. first shot of aroma is deep hops balanced perfectly with bourbony notes of vanilla and oak. seriously well blended to damn near perfection, i am beyond impressed here as the flavor comes around full circle for me and leaves a smooth, caramel flavor that mingles with the hops to give a clean and wonderful finish.

overall you have to love this one, not enough big hoppy beers put into barrels

 565 characters

Photo of BEER88
3.91/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Balast point, stone, and sam adams all taste the same!

54 characters

Photo of ShanePB
3.25/5  rDev -19.2%

Photo of BARFLYB
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On Tap At Capone's.

Barrel Aged Tounge buckler came to me looking very red but not rose de gambrinus red, this was more of a faded red with bronze and orange. A nice cap of melted sugar foam on top leaving some stickies. The smell is what you would expect with the bourbon/barrel/oak/ vanilla up front and kinda muting out the base beer. How long this was in the barrel is anyones guess, but it seems like a long time. All I really get is the bourbon which is fine by me. But what's this, a big ol red ale under it, yes. Tounge buckler(BA) is super hoppy and kinda tounge stripping reminding me of Devil Dancer, this tastes much better though. It also reminds me of fresh Double Bastard without the bourbon. Vanilla is wayu up there with oak and some bourbon intertwined with a gorgeous display of caramel malt that leads for a sweet middle. I could also detect a note of chocolate with extreme warming. Feel is a big medium and the IBU's have to be big, the bitterness is there but it is layered with the malts and the vanilla from the oak leaving for a great feel and not totally tounge stripping in the end. This was carbed up fine off of the tap. I enjoyed this much more than I thought I would and I drank it super quick, which is rare for a beer of this size and style. A great beer!!

 1,291 characters

Photo of HopHead84
3.82/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5


On tap at Ballast Point Old Grove. Aged for "a couple months" in bourbon barrels.

A: Slightly hazed reddish amber with a small off white head.

S: The short time in the barrel left a distinct mark on Tongue Buckler. Vanilla is huge, and there's just the right amount of bourbon to accentuate the rich candied caramel that has become quite apparent. There's still some dank pine and evident citrus, but this smells a lot like a bourbon barrel aged Barleywine.

T: The flavor is aggressive but good. High level of bitterness with big pine notes. Caramel malt is really strong and melds wonderfully with bourbon, vanilla, and toffee. This is quite boozy, and it's probably a bit too aggressive at this point, especially when combined with the bitterness. Finish is caramel, bourbon, pine, vanilla, and a blast of booze.

M: Medium body with moderate carbonation. Mouthfeel is sticky and dry.

Overall: An aggressive hoppy red with an excellent barrel presence.

 969 characters

Photo of Zazzi82
3.78/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of xnicknj
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

on tap at khyber in philly

Pours a reddish auburn, slightly cloudy, a nice topping of off-white head, spotty lacing and retention.

A blast of juicy hops and bourbon barrel, caramel malts and sweetness with bitterness and booze.

The bourbon and hops combine for a complete palate assault right up front, which dominates the flavors. Pine and resin with bitter grapefruit and pith. Dries out the tongue with some caramel malt sweetness followed by vanilla and oak. Bourbon throughout the finish with heat and lingering bitterness.

Fuller medium body, nice carbonation, tingly and a bit rough on the tongue. If you like aggressive, attacking beers, this is pretty much it - an absolute avalanche of bourbon and hops, and I love it.

 734 characters

Photo of mportnoy
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%

Photo of rawfish
4.17/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of notchucknorris
3.7/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Ballast Point's Barrel Aged Day

A: Amber color with a thin cream colored head.

S: Wowzers. I'm not getting a ton of bourbon, but I do get a lot of coconut and vanilla. Almost like the inside of a mounds bar. A touch of bourbon and wood as well.

T: Lots of sweet malt, coconut, vanilla and a ton of caramel. It's not bad, but I expected to like this one a lot more. I would say the standard version is better.

 422 characters

Photo of calcnerd
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%

Photo of tbone1384
4.09/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of koopa
4.09/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this one during PBW at Capone's.

Appearance: Pours a pinkish red, fairly transparent, shows little to no head / retention / or lace.

Smell: Lots going on here....healthy dose of vanilla, some supporting bourbon of course, oaky tones, a hint of leather, a hint of fruity malt, and some citrus hops.

Taste: Same as the nose but some flavors get drowned out.

Mouthfeel: Fairly nice and light despite the big punch this sipper presents.

Overall: Decent brew to enjoy slowly!

 479 characters

Photo of jwat
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%

Photo of MickeyHops
4.06/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of oglmcdgl
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at capone during pbw.

A- small cap of light tan head upon arrival that leaves just a few spots of lace on the glass. Deep yellow orange in color with a bit of hazy to it.

S- bourbon forward but not to heavy with bits of vanilla and caramel. Hops are piney and resinous and seem a bit faded. Probably due to the time in the barrel. Malts come of sweet and bready.

T- solid balance between hops and barrel. Bourbon isn't the edgey aggressive type and comes off with a touch of spirit, toasty wood and hints of vanilla. The hops are mildly bitter and on the oily pine sap side of things, kinda flat and muted. Malts step thing up a little and bring a caramel and toasted wheat bread sweetness. Finish is on the sweeter side.

M- a few steps above medium I'm body and a good carb that gives it a bit more lift. Almost no heat from a big barrel aged beer.

O- solid stuff not the best imp red or barrel aged beer but as far as barreled reds goes this is quite good. I would have like some fresh hops notes but maybe that's just me.

 1,041 characters

Photo of Smarty_Pints
4/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of sholland119
3.11/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On tap at Teresa's Next Door, 6/6/11.

A-Pours a clear orange with sticky lacing from a thin white head.

S-Hints of bourbon barrel, lots of malt, faint hops.

T-But boy are the hops here in the taste. Extreme bitter hoppiness overwhelms all but a bit of vanilla/bourbon character. I like hops, but this is way out of balance.. Very disappointing.

M-Medium bodied, moderate carbonation, tongue scrapingly bitter.

O-Quite disappointing really. I am a big fan of BP beers, but not a huge fan of this one.


 508 characters

Photo of Wolberjs
4/5  rDev -0.5%

Photo of JimGlonke
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Tongue Buckler (Bourbon Barrel Aged) from Ballast Point Brewing Company
Beer rating: 4.02 out of 5 with 51 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.