Deth's Tar | Revolution Brewing

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Deth's TarDeth's Tar

Brewed by:
Revolution Brewing
Illinois, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
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

Added by homebrew311 on 09-27-2013

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Reviews: 104 | Ratings: 864
Photo of mjpolzin
4.15/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Very hot on the nose and taste initially. As it warmed, the bourbon started to show through and I also got flavors of coffee and cinnamon. I know neither of those are adjuncts in this so it must just have been the way my palette reacted to the barrel. Solid beer but not world class.

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Photo of GOBLIN
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Barrel aging done right . . . Balanced perfectly in my opinion. Pours oily but not too slick. Vicious but not syrupy or too sticky. Not too dry, not too sweet. Definitely some heat from the bourbon and alcohol however it's far from being a booze bomb. This right up there with barrel aged Ten Fidy in my book.

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Photo of Ciocanelu
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Black color with tan head. Aroma has some astringent bourbon, slightly boozy with some burnt sugar. Taste starts with quite harsh whiskey, booze, sweet malt and some dark fruits. Full bodied, soft carbonation. Overall it has some nice flavors but quite boozy and not too easy to drink.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.14/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Daring in its depth and darkness, Revolution brewers are starting a new revolution that gets us back to incredibly roasty, burnt, toasty and spicy stout with the complexities of whisky barrels for yet an extra little kick in the pants.

Deth's Tar pours jet black with with complete opaqueness. Slightly tawny and bronze at its extreme margins, the nose drifts above its short froth with smoked chocolate, espresso, walnut, charred sugars and burnt cream. Slightly fruity and winey, a complex scent leads into those savory, burnt and deeply malted sweetnesses.

As the flavors develop, its sweetness turns from sorghum and molasses over to char and roast. Bitter baker's chocolate, dark roast coffee, black walnut and the char of scorched earth gives a depth of earthy flavor that saturates the middle palate to its fullest. But then the taste takes a brighter tone as roasted currants, faint fennel, and the spiciness of peppercorn and nutty oak tannins decorate the finish.

Full bodied but drying from the astringency of char, a light ash character pulls from the sweetness and wraps around the burgeoning bitterness that ensues. Seeming of burnt pine cones, the long roast derived bitter bite extends deep into finish, carrying with it the char of grain, whisky heat and a twang of sherry.

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Photo of AirBob
4.22/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2015 vintage served at cellar temp.

L - One finger of fluffy head the color of coffee with a dash of cream. Reduces to a thin, dense layer. Black body. No light penetration when held up to a lamp.

S - Heat is noticeable. Light bourbon notes. Barrel characteristics of char and coconut underlying dark chocolate. A bit of soy sauce.

T - Very well layered and complex. Begins with strong bourbon notes and some heat. Middle shifts to more dominant barrel notes - coconut, vanilla, and char. Bourbon reemerges prior to the finish along with some rye like spiciness. Finishes with intense, rich dark chocolate and a touch of bitter coffee.

M - Full bodied. Low carbonation. Boozy finish and a bit dry for the style.

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Photo of spacecake9
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours black with a thin tan head.
S - Aroma is not strong, a little chocolate.
T - Flavor is molasses, vanilla and comes with a bit of an alcohol sting on finish.
M - Low carbonation, above average thickness.
O - Really enjoyed this beer, glad I have several more bottles.

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Photo of JamFuel
4.49/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Lord Hobo in Cambridge.

Pours a thick jet black. Looks awesome...

Another stout with a massive smell, hits you from 10 feet away. Huge amounts of coconut, coffee, chocolate and fudge.

Taste is rich and boozy, and the flavor is like someone melted a Bounty bar in an espresso. Deep, complex and massive.

Texture is thick, oily and boozy.

A terrific stout, but one I probably couldn't have more than 12 oz of. Massive in every way.

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Photo of metter98
4.24/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On-tap at Mugs Alehouse, Brooklyn, NY

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a collar of tan bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of bourbon are present in the nose.
T: The taste follows the smell and is mostly dominated by bourbon and the associated vanilla. The bourbon flavors are well incorporated into the beer and are not overpowering.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied on the palate, somewhat smooth, and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This is a very nice bourbon aged stout. I liked how the bourbon was not overpowering and the alcohol was well hidden.

Serving type: on-tap

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A big thanks to Jeff for this one. 22oz. bomber into a Surly teku. Shared with schen9303.

Nose is boozy, char, chocolate, fudge and roast. Deep and sweet with some soy sauce and dark fruit overtones. Beer opens dark fruit. Hints of plum, soy sauce, raisin and anise. A touch boozy and on the more ethanol side. Chocolate, fudge and a light molasses present also. Sweet and rich. Body is full with moderate to low carbonation. Slick and oily in the mouth and goes down rich. Again, just a tad hot.

I probably cracked this one a little too soon as a little dissipation of the booziness would do wonders for this beer.

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Photo of cbutova
4.26/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Draft pour at Sierra Grille, Northampton, MA.

A- Pitch black tar pours from the draft to snifter glass. The head is foamy, dark tan and only makes it up to about a half finger high. Low retention. No ring remains at the edges and lacing is rare.

S- Fudgey stout and bourbon barrels. Neither are abrasive, very smoothed out on both fronts. Deep dark chocolate, roast barley, vanilla, maple, toasted nuts, whiskey, medium toasted oak. Hint of booze. Really fudge brownie decadence.

T- Whiskey goes a bit ham here but still smooth and flavorful. Spicy and peppery almost salty Bourbon. Oak wood. Vanilla bean sweets and general bold flavors from everything in the brew. Fudge goodness. Salty spicy whiskey again. Roasted barley and dark bitter cocoa somehow trumped. Becomes very peppery whiskey with time. Huge vanilla.

MF- Silky smooth and a moderately heavy body; approaching massive but not quite there. Decadent creaminess caresses the palate. Ends with some heat from the high ABV.

Delivers on all fronts for a barrel aged stout at high ABV. Bold chocolate, fudge, whiskey intensity, heat from the alcohol and the body to back it up.

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Photo of tigg924
4.53/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pour opaque, black in color with 1/4 inch head. Smell is oak and booze. Taste is big molasses, baker's chocolate, vanilla, coffee, and bourbon. Heavy bodied, low carbonation, sweet and oaky. Revolution is right up there with the best producers of oak aged beers. I buy them without question when I see them. This one lives up to the Revolution standard..Excellent and complex with a base beer that mixes well with the oak aging...If you like oak aged RIS this is how it is done...Go seek this out.

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Photo of lemmy187
4.39/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours medium black with about a half inch of light brown head. Nose is dominated by the bourbon barrel and oak. Taste is barrel heavy, but balanced by notes of marshmallow, bakers chocolate, vanilla, and roasted malts. Slight alcohol burn (expected for the 13.5% abv) with moderately high sweetness. Body is slick and full with carbonation bordering on high for the style. Really enjoyed this BA offering....could have been better with less carbs and sweetness.

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Photo of smcolw
4.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Moderate head and nearly no lace. Dark enough brown to prevent light from shining through.

Raspberry sweetness to the aroma. Mild nearly burnt chocolate malt smells.

Very smooth with a carbonation that simply fits. Perhaps the best body I've ever experienced. Darker malt start but I get no coffee nor sweetness. Think sweetened Baker's chocolate -- it's not semisweet but has elements of bitter chocolate nibs and brown sugar. Overall, this is an amazingly cool beer. Seek this one out.

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Photo of bobhits
2.59/5  rDev -39.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Pours flat black. The legs don't give much given the abv and size.

The nose is rather good with a nice bit of chocolate, caramel, oak, vanilla, butter scotch perhaps, and perhaps some coffee mixed in with that chocolate. Really inviting.

The flavor is a bit more dark fruits and oak meet bourbon with vanilla and chocolate in the back ground. Far more acidic, not sour, than i'd have expected. There is certainly a good bit of alcohol in the flavor, not just feel but flavor. The more I drink the more the oak flavor is over powering and acidic flavors are getting in here. There's a great opening to this and then the finish really kills it.

Sadly the mouth feel here does nothing to help. It's watery and yet the alcohol body is here without any cream or body to help.

Based on the other reviews I must have gotten a bad bottle. There appears to be an age statement stamped on it but it's over the bar code so I can't read it.

Sadly I will have to say this is a shocker as I can't think of a 13% bourbon barrel aged beer I'd say to pass on, but this is off putting.

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Photo of superspak
4.2/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle into snifter, bottled on 6/20/2015. Listed as 13.5% on the label. Pours dense opaque dark brown/black color with a 1 finger dense dark tan head with good retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings on the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of big milk/dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toffee, molasses, vanilla, bourbon, toasted oak, dark bread, fudge, and herbal; with lighter notes of raisin, licorice, smoke, charcoal, coconut, and roast/toast/oaky earthiness. Some increasing booze in the aromas as it warms, but not overwhelming. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of dark/roast/bready malt, bourbon barrel, and light-moderate earthy hop notes; with great strength. Taste of big milk/dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toffee, molasses, vanilla, bourbon, toasted oak, dark bread, fudge, and herbal; with lighter notes of raisin, licorice, smoke, charcoal, coconut, and roast/toast/oaky earthiness. Light-moderate herbal/spicy hop and roast/char bitterness; with some bourbon/oak spiciness on the finish. Lingering notes of milk/dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, toffee, molasses, vanilla, bourbon, toasted oak, dark bread, fudge, light licorice/dark fruit, herbal and roast/toast/oaky earthiness on the finish for a while. Fantastic complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roast/bready malt, bourbon barrel, and light-moderate earthy hop flavors; with a great roast/hop bitter/sweet and bourbon/oak spiciness balance; with zero cloying sweetness or astringent roast character after the finish. Light dryness from roast/hop bitterness and bourbon/oak spiciness, lightly increasing through the glass. Light-medium carbonation and fairly full body; with a very smooth, creamy/silky, and fairly sticky/chalky/tannic balanced mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden; a small pleasant warmth with minimal 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, bourbon barrel, and light-moderate earthy hop flavors; very smooth and dangerously easy to sip on for the huge ABV. Spot on style character with outstanding barrel balance. Never overpowering, drying, or boozy on the bourbon/oak tannins. A highly enjoyable offering.

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Photo of ZebulonXZogg
3.56/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber into snifter, comes black from the bottle with a small dark brown head that fades quickly and leaves a thin film on the glass.
Aroma is bourbon, dark fruit, and wine. Port?
Flavor is a bit tart which surprised me.
This was thinner than expected.
Overall I was a bit disappointed in this beer. I think Straight Jacket, Mean Gene and Gravedigger Billy were much better. One last thought, the box this came in listed the abv at 13.5%.

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Photo of TreyIsWilson
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Pours a motor oil black with a one finger tan head. Light soapy lacing.

S - Aroma is dark chocolate, coffee, vanilla, dark fruits and bourbon.

T - The taste is dark chocolate, coffee, vanilla, molasses, oak and bourbon.

M - Medium bodied with medium/low carbonation. Soft syrupy mouthfeel with crisp dry finish.

O - This is a terrific BBA RIS. The flavors are perfectly balanced and the alcohol is very subtle.

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Photo of Boccu
4.58/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours pitch black with a nice thick brown head that fades slowly. Aroma of coffee and booze. Taste is chocolate,vanilla,molasses, coffee grinds with a light bourbon finish. Excellent bourbon stout. Look forward to more from them.

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Photo of bgold86
4.78/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

10/20/15 bottle, big big bourbon sweetness on the nose and big chocolate, slight hints of dark dried fruits but very subtle.

Surprisingly thick and chewy. Loads of dark chocolate, dark dried fruits, slight vanilla sweetness.

This aged very well. Would stand toe to toe with much rarer lower bottled edition bourbon barrel aged stouts.

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Photo of neurobot01
4.49/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber dated 10/20/15 into a Duvel tulip at cellar temp.

Look: dark, fudgy brown with a light brown head that dissipates quickly.

Smell: rich molasses, dried figs, port wine, raspberry truffles.

Taste: dark, delicious chocolate truffle gives way to a deep roast flavor without any bitterness. Vanilla, coconut, caramel, and oak all linger. Also some chocolate covered cherry/strawberry going on. Very smooth. Only knock is that it pushes the boundary with cloying.

Feel: thick and chewy, with enough carbonation to make it go down easy, and a juicy finish.

Overall: this is a very well-done BA stout. Not quite in the top tier for the style, but not far behind.

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Photo of FlaviusG
3.71/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

10.20.2015 bottling date. Pours dark, with brown tan head that fades. Smells a little acidic, some fruit/raisin notes. Tastes a little boozy, some chocolate notes, espresso on the back end, slightly acidic.

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Photo of Damian
3.72/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Drank from a 1 pint, 6 fluid ounces bottle purchased at Formaggio Kitchen, Cambridge, MA
Served in a snifter

Deth's Tar is an appropriate name for a beer that pours as black as endless space. The think, oily liquid was topped by a small, frothy, saddle brown head that quickly dissolved. A few dots of lacing trickled along the glass.

The nose was pretty unexciting. Char notes dominated initially. Loads of over roasted malts. There was a harsh boozy quality as well. The alcohol was definitely more like straight up whiskey than bourbon. Bit of espresso. As the beer sat, the booziness mellowed out and smooth bourbon notes took over. Good amount of brown sugar-like sweetness. Hint of vanilla.

Like the nose, the flavor profile was rather unrefined. Roasty, almost acrid malts hit hard right off the bat. Lots of harsh alcohol in the center. Bit of bakers chocolate. The booziness crescendoed on the back end and in the finish. With time, the alcohol softened out but it also permeated the flavor profile. Bourbon notes dominated.

Super smooth, creamy and frothy mouthfeel. I definitely was not surprised that this beer was brewed with flaked oats. Medium bodied for the style. Uber slick on the palate.

Deth's Tar is bourbon-forward booze bomb that, while tasty, is tough to take in large quantities. Though the beer's alcohol prowess lessened with time, a bomber would still best be enjoyed amongst three or four people.

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Photo of BuccoFan
4.69/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pour produced an immediate solid light brown ring around glass. Aroma is vanilla and bourbon. Full-bodied and smooth. Taste is a definitely a tad on sweet side, but this proved to be as delicious as about any BA stout I've had. I loved this.

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Photo of von_kaiser
4.57/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Utterly shocked how amazing this beer was. Went head to head w/ BA speedway & exorcism of Rachel Wall. Deth's Tar was by FAR the crowd favorite. Rich, viscous, chocolate, subtle bourbon flavor, NO alcohol presence. Amazing! Will grab if I stumble across.

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Photo of majorbase2
4.23/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark brown color with a dark brown chocolatey head the recedes very quickly, leaving no lacing.

Bourbon absolutely dominates this. Very little presence of anything else. Hints of chocolate and moments of vanilla, and a general sweetness.

After a disappointing start, everything comes roaring back in hue he first sip. An incredible blend of sweet, vivid chocolate and vanilla malts blend perfectly with the bourbon. Vanilla actually might outshine the bourbon here, which is a nice feature. Touches of oats on the back end. Not as many heavily roasted malts as seem to be typical in BBA beers, which is fine. Alcohol is not as dominant as I would've expected based off the aroma of the beer and it's high ABV, providing a nice little bite and a touch of bitterness on the back end.

Heavy bodied, medium carbonation. Probably the easiest drinking BBA stout I've had, probably owing to the fact that it is a bit light compared to beers that share similar characteristics.

Overall, an excellent bourbon barrel aged beer that has some unique characteristics. Definitely worth a try if you see it on shelves.

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Deth's Tar from Revolution Brewing
4.3 out of 5 based on 864 ratings.
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