Deth's Tar
Revolution Brewing

Deth's TarDeth's Tar
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Russian Imperial Stout
Ranked #33
Ranked #605
4.34 | pDev: 7.37%
Revolution Brewing
Illinois, United States
Deth's TarDeth's Tar
Notes: An imperial stout aged in bourbon barrels, and named after our exalted leader, Emperor Deth. This one is definitely on the dark side.

A play on Josh's name, this Russian imperial stout is aged in two different types of bourbon barrels (Heaven Hill & Old Forester) then blended for the resulting thick and dark brew.

Deth's Tar is a barrel-aged Russian Imperial Oatmeal Stout. It is brewed with a host of wonderful specialty malts, flaked oats and oat malt to impart a rich, silky mouthfeel and deep, complex malt flavors and aromas reminiscent of dark baker’s chocolate, fresh brewed coffee and caramel candy. We also utilized Warrior as the main bittering hop and English Fuggle in the whirlpool to impart a clean balanced bitterness and hints earthiness and spiciness dancing around the intense malt backbone. The brew then spent seven months resting between Heaven Hill and Old Forester bourbon barrels. The resulting blend is Deth's Tar, that we bring to you once again on draft and in 22-ounce bombers in commemorative packaging.

40 IBU
Reviews: 195 | Ratings: 1,130 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of woemad
4.59/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz can received courtesy of Whyteboar. Canned on October 3, 2019. Reviewed blind.

Poured a tremendously dark shade of brown, virtually black, with what seemed like a whole lotta viscosity. Massive, mocha colored head. While the head did mostly fade away after a few minutes, leaving spotty lace, a fairly impressive ring of foam refused to die.

I'm reasonably sure this is a bourbon barrel aged imperial stout. Big, sweet and oakey bourbon notes here. I'm also getting what smells like chocolaty notes as well. Adjunct, or is there some malt alchemy at work here?

Oh, this is absolutely wonderful! Rich vanilla, bourbon, brown sugary notes are fairly high in the mix, but it doesn't have an excess of "heat" from the alcohol, which I'm guessing is high. And, yes, I'm willing to say that there's chocolate or at least cocoa that's been added. There's some coffeeish notes as well, but they're restrained enough to make me think they come from the dark malts rather than any actual coffee having been added. Time will tell if I'm right. This is drinking like a dessert, so I'm glad I decided to hit this after dinner and not before. Very slight hoppy dryness at the swallow.

Fairly full bodied, with a luscious, creamy mouthfeel.

This was absolutely fantastic! As perfect a dessert after a long day in uncertain times as I could want. Thanks, Craig!

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woemad from Washington, Mar 24, 2020
Photo of Mehackett
5/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

On tap at Red Arrow Tap Room In Naperville, IL. This is simply the best. The notes of vanilla, bourbon, etc are over the top. For the price, it ought be! But worth a shot! 9oz. pour was $17.00.

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Photo of Victory_Sabre1973
4.5/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours thick pitch black. 2 1/2 finger tan head. The head retention is actually damn good for an almost 15% beer. No lacing on the glass.
The nose is a barrel bomb. Caramel, mocha, chocolate, dates, figs, raisins. Just a total aroma bomb.
Taste - First sit is at 61 F - Like the nose, the flavors are there. Lots of caramel up front, That's mixed in with chocolate. The dark fruit flavors seem to be more of a backside flavor to me. There's also a slight bitterness to this, but very slight, and also pleasing. There's also, even though it's not the coffee version, a hint of coffee to this.
Thick, creamy, full bodied. What should be expected from this style.
Solid beer of this style, and damn tasty!

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Photo of KurtisCarman
4.65/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Am I wrong thinking that if this was a limited release in waxed glass bottle this would be a big deal and very highly rated?

Head was nice. Dissipated relatively quickly but maintained nice lacing.

Aromas were amazing. Fudge and chocolate notes abound. Subtle oak aromas and dark fruit, mainly plum.

Plum flavors a little more prominent in the taste. Fudge and bourbon flavors shine in the taste for me.

A little thin but sticky mouth feel. Those things seem contradictory but it is how I feel drinking this.

Overall I love this beer. Easily one of my favorite BA stouts.

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Photo of timmy2b
4.59/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Very dark brown/black pour. Small Creamy off white head. Barrel scent present in the nose along with some strong fudgy chocolate notes. Taste is very mild on the barrel with dark chocolate and some dark fruit. Very smooth and clean for being a barrel aged Stout and the high ABV. Does not disappoint!

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timmy2b from New York, Jan 28, 2020
Photo of woodychandler
4.7/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

If the previous beer was the opening salvo in this week's New Beer(s) from @jkblr Sunday (Week 777), MKIII!, then this is the barrage of the CANtinuing assault. I had CANsidered CANtinuing with these next ones at the end of last week, but @jkblr gave me the wave-off & I aborted the mission at that juncture. Today, I am getting an early start in the hope that pacing will enable me to get them all in over the course of the day. We shall see.

From the CAN: "Stout aged in Bourbon Barrels"; "Limited Edition Deep Wood Series"; "Witness the firepower of this fully operational Barrel-Aged Imperial Oatmeal Stout. Brewed with English specialty malts and the addition of flaked and malted oats to create a rich, chocolaty profile and silky mouthfeel that cloaks its considerable strength. The American oak barrels continue to build layers of complexity, reminiscent of vanilla, toasted coconut and caramel candy after aging this dark menace a full 12 months."; "Brewed In Chicago".

Dig it, man. I am hip to coffee, but this CANbo of flavors sounds mighty groovy! I beCAN by Crack!ing open the vent & beginning a slow, gentle C-Line Glug. I wanna tell you that I am not afraid, but my last brush with Deth has left me CANxious, at the very least. I watched as this horseman of the CANpocalypse rode up & rose up to form just under two fingers of fizzy, foamy, bubbly, deep-brown head with modest retention, but CANparatively better than its predecessor. Color was stygian-Black/Opaque (SRM = 44), allowing ZERO light penetration and felling all that came near it. 8=O I fell to my knees & begged for mercy as I simultaneously lifted it to my nose for a sniff. Nose was both more & less bourbon-y than the previous Café Deth in that here it was unenCANbered by coffee, but it was less intense in terms of its presence. Mmm. I am more of a Rye than a Bourbon man, so this was perfect. I definitely got Baker's chocolate & caramel, but not in a sweet way. This was more subtle with the bourbon-aging leading the charge, but in such a way as not to sear my nostrils shut as on/in Café Deth. Is this a fair CANparison? Hmm. Mouthfeel was medium-to-full, more in keeping with the style, but still not quite up to par, IMHO. Taste was … Imagine bourbon-soaked coconut rolled in caramel & enrobed in dark chocolate! Holy dessert, Batman! THIS was what I was craving. I had high hopes for the previous coffee-infused RIS, but it just did not measure up. This, on the other hand, was really bringing the goods! In fact, it was dangerous in terms of its tastiness. This was not meant to be sucked down, but instead, sipped upon & yet, I was CANtinually finding myself having to slow down. Smooootttthhhhh. Phew. OcCANsionally, I would get a real blast of bourbon on lifting the glass to my lips & near my nose, reminding me of its origins. This would be one for a share! Finish left me licking my sticky lips for a reminder of the glorious bourbon/coconut/caramel/dark chocolate mélange. Mmm. YMMV.

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woodychandler from Pennsylvania, Jan 12, 2020
Photo of ajm5108
4.28/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours an inky black, little to no carbonation, thin caramel head that fades quickly. Aroma has medium notes of caramel, oak and fudge. Palate is very hot upfront, but smooths itself out nicely adding very decadent, deep chocolate layers (fudge, baker’s chocolate, dark cacao). It hits the chocolate heavy so if you like that this is the beer for you, personally I could have used just a smidge more roundedness. Super thick mouthfeel, sticky even. Very good, super chocolatey

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ajm5108 from Pennsylvania, Jan 05, 2020
Photo of q33jeff
4.31/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25


Can to snifter.

LOOK: thick dark black. a bit cola like at first, but thickens as it pours, big light brown head, creamy lacing. Very good retention.
AROMA: bourbon goodness and dark chocolate are prominent.
TASTE: dark fruit, roasted malt, bourbon, burnt brown sugar
FEEL: very full body. smooth, velvety, tad flat but to be expected with thickness.

Very Good BA Stout. And notably potent for an oatmeal stout.


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q33jeff from New Jersey, Dec 26, 2019
Photo of Wolvmar
4.15/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12-7-19. 12oz can dated 10-3-19. Poured into a tulip glass. Purchased at ML. Reviewed relative to last years vintage.

Basically, the same as last year’s review with a little more impressive lacing. A really good beer that is worth trying and trying again!

Pour: 4
Nose: 4
Taste: 4.25
Mouthfeel: 4
Overall: 4.25


12oz can filled 10-17-18. Poured into a pint glass. Purchased at Barrels & Vines.

Pour: like the name, dark tar like, small head that faded quickly with little ring, cloud or lacing. Not nearly as impressive as the Cafe Deth I had last night. Not sure why... 4

Nose: bourbon, and lots of it, upfront. Dark chocolate, hint of vanilla, dark fruits/citrus. 4

Taste: immediate bourbon hit, dark fruit, dark chocolate, caramel, bready, roasted malts. Some hops bitterness in the middle and back end. Clean finish. Pretty boozy and maybe not as well-balanced as Cafe Deth but really good. 4.25

Mouthfeel: moderate carbonation, pretty smooth and viscous, like an oatmeal stout should be. Not as thick and incredibly enjoyable as the Cafe Deth but really good. 4.25

Overall: a really good, maybe just short of great, BA imperial, oatmeal stout. Could be suffering, to some degree, from the recency bias vs Cafe Deth I had last night. Definitely worth trying if you like boozy, big stouts. I'll probably buy another to drink and an extra to cellar for fun. 4.25

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Wolvmar from Michigan, Dec 08, 2019
Photo of EMH73
4.39/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours black with a quarter inch tan head that left blotchy lacing. Smells of bourbon, dark chocolate, coffee and dark roasted malts. Tastes of dark chocolate, cocoa, espresso, bourbon, roasted malts, caramel, vanilla, oak and dark fruits. Medium bodied, soft carbonation, mouth feel is a little on the.thin side for a RIS, dry and moderately bitter finish.

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EMH73 from New York, Dec 06, 2019
Photo of bobv
4.37/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz. can.
2018 vintage, filled 10-17-2018.
Moderate pour yields a one inch tan head over a near black body with scant lacing. Nose of dark malt, oak, caramel, vanilla, dark chocolate, dark fruit, and lots of bourbon. Taste mirrors nose somewhat with the the bourbon barrel's attributes (oak, caramel, vanilla, and booze) coming forward in such a good way. Being a bourbon drinker, this is what I look for in a BBA Stout and Revolution delivers. Nice feel for a 13 month old can and overall, a wonderful experience to be sure! Cheers to Revbrew for this gem!!!

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bobv from Vermont, Dec 02, 2019
Photo of dafla67
4.48/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark black. Aroma is roasty, bourbon & chocolate. Taste is also roasty, caramel, vanilla and bourbon. Feel is medium but for me, wish the feel was fuller & thicker.

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dafla67 from Pennsylvania, Nov 23, 2019
Photo of kevanb
4.19/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

12oz can, 2019 release, 10.03.19 date on the bottom of the can. Poured into a 14oz snifter glass.

The beer pours a deep jet black color, very opaque and thick with a loose khaki head that has no retention and yields no lacing. The aroma is nice, big barrel character, lots of toasted oak, char, spicy bourbon, big chocolate, roasted grains, stone fruits and a bit of vanilla. The flavors are wonderful, big roast character, lots of hearty rich grains, bittersweet chocolate, charred and toasted oak with a bit of coconut, hot bourbon, smooth caramel and toffee with stone fruits and a vanilla marshmallow character that sneaks out at the finish. The mouthfeel is good, coating medium body, not quite as thick and heavy as expected but it's lively and expressively rather than flat and syrupy and finishes with a big boozy heat.

Verdict: A great barrel aged stout from Revolution. Excellent roast character, nice chocolate with underlying complexities and a great barrel character, nice char and wood profile.

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kevanb from Illinois, Nov 22, 2019
Photo of Holderness
4.14/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

L -- 1000 lumens passed through the glass reveals a decently dark reddish black body. Finger of tan head produced with moderate pour and dissipates quite quickly to a small ring of lacing
S -- Bourbon, dark chocolate, caramel, dried fig, prune, espresso, molasses. Big and boisterous
T -- Dark chocolate fudge, lots of bourbon, oak, vanilla, dried dark fruit, bit of roast. Again, big and boisterous
F -- Big mouthfeel, medium- carb. Could be a hair thicker
O -- Reminds me a decent amount of BA Ten Fidy. It's a very 'loud' beer, which in this case is a good thing


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Holderness from Massachusetts, Nov 20, 2019
Photo of Bshaw22
4.43/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours thick black with Khaki head that sticks around a bit.
Smell is plums and raisins and a little bit of Barrel
Taste is vanilla and Barrel and some dark fruits. Very well balanced and smooth. I really enjoyed this beer. Sometimes those dark fruits come thru to much but not in this.

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Bshaw22 from Wisconsin, Nov 18, 2019
Photo of thebeers
4.03/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Motor oil black, maybe a little garnet-hued, with three fingers of dark tan head. The head is simultaneously airy and fizzy, making it fairly short-lived. It leaves just a few spots of lacing.

The nose is fairly restrained. I get hints of chocolate, plum and some toffee-like bourbon.

The taste follows fairly closely with flashes of coffee, chocolate, flat cola, cherry, vanilla and a little alcohol heat.

Medium bodied feel that seems oily at first, giving way to definite creaminess. Mild carbonation.

This is a nice beer in a great format. I can think of another accessible Illinois BBA Stout I prefer better, though.

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thebeers from Pennsylvania, Nov 17, 2019
Photo of laketang
4.54/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great barrel aged brew, thick dark with very little in the way of a head.
Nice chocolaty goodness and not too much alcohol showing.
Thick and rich and makes a great after dinner sipper or by the fire .

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laketang from Illinois, Nov 03, 2019
Photo of MonDak_Joe1953
4.32/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle. Looks to be a December 2016 bottling date.
Black colored body. Fizzy mocha head upon pouring, which settles back and results in an active surface from rising bubbles. No lacing.
Aroma of roasted malt, chocolate, caramel, and vanilla. Plus the barrel.
Taste is influenced a lot by the barrel, with some vapors and vanilla. Joining in, the malts bring chocolate, molasses, and a little coffee. There is definitely some dark fruit like raisins and prunes, and a smooth, woody/earthy character towards the end. Very little bitterness.
Thicker than medium mouth feel. There is a dryness more than any syrup texture. Good carbonation.
This beer has a light and airy character that means a lot of the flavor enjoyment comes from the nose, and how it influences the flavor in the mouth. Quite complex, yet easy to drink.

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Photo of Redrover
4.34/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

I can’t believe I haven’t reviewed this one…. Just popped open can with a fill date of 11-9-17.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, the beer is inky black with a smallish dark brown head.

Big nose of dark fruit, a hint of bourbon & something sweet like molasses.

Lots going on here. There is raisins, heavily roasted malts, bakers chocolate, a bit of vanilla, some coffee notes and dark strap molasses. There is still a bit of heat but it is not distracting. As I get further into the beer, the bourbon and woodnotes are stronger. More heat late.

The mouth is silky smooth with pinpricks of carbonation. It is coating in the best way.

I think this is a fine example of this style.

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Redrover from Wisconsin, Jul 13, 2019
Photo of Rristow
4.54/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Tasted from can. Dark brown with beige head. Bourbon sweet nose. Moderate to heavily sticky sweet on the mouth. Caramel, brown sugar, molasses, cocoa, dates on the flavor. Excellent BA stout.

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Photo of Sabtos
4.09/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cool new cans!

The beer itself is glossy black with brown edges and a short burnt mocha head that quickly fizzles out to nothing.

First impressions of this beer are that it's exceptionally woody and oaky. Charred and splintery, with a backing bourbon heat, the barrel brings hints of maple and black pepper. Coming in behind is a touch of vanilla and Tootsie Roll, through a medium-thin body with a lightly crackling carbonation finishing semi-sticky with a mild sting and a cola-like exhale.

For a big stout, it's easy drinking, while also complex enough to tick some geekier boxes.

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Sabtos from Ohio, May 31, 2019
Photo of Oh_Dark_Star
3.56/5  rDev -18%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

L: Little to no head but motor oil black and thick and leaves what lace it can.

S: Big on the oak especially but also the bourbon. Still a bit boozy.

T: Aged 1 1/2 years, Very soy sauce, tiny booze but still smooth.

F: Decently thick but thinner than It appeared. A bit excessive in the carbonation.

O: Overall lacks any Complexity. Just soy sauce, bourbon and oak.

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Oh_Dark_Star from Washington, May 09, 2019
Photo of Snowcrash000
4.09/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a pitch black coloration with a small, creamy/foamy head. Smells of roasted, caramel malt, dark chocolate and dark fruit, with a good, if slightly sharp, bourbon presence and hints of vanilla, coffee and oak. Taste is dominated by slightly roasted, caramel malt, chocolate and dark fruits: raisin, fig, plum, as well as lighter notes of coffee, vanilla, bourbon and an earthy oak presence, with just a hint of herbal hops and licorice as well. Finishes bittersweet, with a light/medium bitterness and some roasted malt and dark fruits lingering in the aftertaste, as well as a slightly boozy bourbon note. Full, thick mouthfeel with a rich body and low carbonation.

An Imperial Stout that's rather heavy on the caramel malts and sweet, dark fruits, but still manages to pull off a good balance with some roasted and rich, dark, bitter chocolate notes, coffee and licorice, as well as a good, although quite boozy, bourbon presence. Way too sweet and boozy for my personal taste, especially as it warms, but still a great beer with a decent complexity and good balance of flavors . Certainly much more suited to a 12oz serving than a 22oz serving though.

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Photo of Flickib41
4.48/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

2017 version. Canned on 11/27/17. Poured from a 12oz can into a tulip glass. Pours a deep dark black with about a half inch of caramel colored head. Strong barrel and coffee notes on the nose. Get strong barrel and chocolate and coffee on taste. Can really taste the alcohol but not in a terrible way.

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Flickib41 from Indiana, Apr 20, 2019
Photo of buschbeer
4.38/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12 FL OZ can
Served in a snifter

This beer pours black as used motor oil. It is topped with less than an inch of mocha head that leaves no lacing.

The smell is wonderful. I get vanilla, anise, chocolate and hints of caramel and coffee.

The taste has caramel and vanilla from the bourbon. I taste chocolate and even a little oak along with hints of anise.

Full bodied with a viscous, oily mouthfeel

This is an excellent beer. I should have bought more than one can.

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Deth's Tar from Revolution Brewing
Beer rating: 96 out of 100 with 1130 ratings