Big Bad Baptist Reserve
Epic Brewing Company

Big Bad Baptist ReserveBig Bad Baptist Reserve
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Stout - American Imperial
Ranked #358
Ranked #1,757
4.31 | pDev: 7.89%
Epic Brewing Company
Utah, United States
Big Bad Baptist ReserveBig Bad Baptist Reserve
Notes: The best of the best of the best... of Big Bad Baptist. That’s what Epic Brewing co-founder Dave Cole had in mind when he and his team came up with the idea for Big Bad Baptist Reserve.

Cole and his team took the brewery’s most legendary beer and carefully hand selected a limited number of the most perfect barrels, some rum and some whiskey, from the different batches and projects of the 2017/2018 “Baptist Season” and carefully blended what they thought was something special, a Big Bad Baptist of epic proportions.

The Reserve has only the choicest barrels of this year’s original version of Big Bad Baptist, plus beer from the best barrels from both the Baptista and Triple Barrel Baptist projects. That means it has the faintest touch of barrel-aged coconut, rum, and of course, copious amounts of artisanal coffee and cacao nibs. It does not, however, have any of the spices found in Baptista. It weighs in at 11.7% ABV and “hides every bit of it” according to Epic national sales manager Darin McGregor.
Reviews: 36 | Ratings: 103 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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trevormajor from Ohio

4.68/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

22 oz bottle, 2019 vintage, poured into a snifter at 50 degrees F:
L - dark and oily with no head
S - molasses, coffee, rum, bourbon
T - coffee and rum/bourbon, chocolate, molasses
F - thick mouthfeel with no carbonation
O - very nice, served colder than I like, so may get better as it warms

Oct 18, 2021
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crm871 from Utah

4.34/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look: Pours pitch black with almost no head. Was a very slight copper colored head but didn’t stay for long.

Smell: Boozy aroma mixed with chocolate, dried fruits, caramel, molasses. Aromas blend together well and make for an enticing nose.

Taste: Chocolate, molasses, malts, cinnamon, all with a boozy twist. The booze tastes like a nice mixture of whiskey and rum. Really nice and complex blend of flavors going on in this.

Feel: Full body, carbonation felt right for this one, hits obviously heavy given the ABV it carries.

Overall: Excellent offering, a formidable beer in the Big Bad Baptist series. Heavy price tag but worth the cost.

Jul 06, 2021
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Scotchboy from Idaho

4.16/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer # 1800 on BA.

2021 Vintage. Crowler pour, split into snifters. Pours dark with ruby highlights but sits opaque black in the glass with a small khaki/mocha head. Aromas lead with a strong roasty and black malt presence, with moderate notes of nuttiness, earthy cocoa, mild coconut and rum-my spirits. More of the same on the palate with a dry finish, the alcohol is subdued. There is a definite roasty espresso presence throughout, with a medium-to-full body. Very good little sipper, just hoped it would have more coconut.

Jun 30, 2021
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Tony210 from New Jersey

4.29/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours fairly dark and kinda thin for the style. Moderate foamy head. Big time bourbon barrel aroma mixes with boozy, woody barrel essence, chocolate, coffee, and faint coconut. Very flavorful, boozy, chocolate, rum, coffee, light coconut on the finish. Pretty intricate, yet still a little raw. Probably should have sat on this bottle for a bit. Light carbonation, medium bodied, which is surprising for all the flavor that is packed in it. Overall, a good beer, not my favorite.

4.25 rating

May 14, 2021
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DaveMaciolek21 from New Jersey

4.25/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Jet black, this tan head that pours with full-bodied promise. Promise kept. Chocolate is upfront, cconut under in support, and I have to say, the coffee with imperceptible. But smooth and delicious? Oh yeah. Very smooth, a dessert in a glass, and a big abv that you never taste.

May 02, 2021
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minterro from California

3.96/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Got it as a gift. Bomber. No bottling date, DEN-6782, 13%ABV, consumed: 02/2021

A&S: pours a half finger of light brown head, maintains in a thin rim around the glass and leaves leacing. Huge rum and bourbon aroma. Also contains mild amount cocoa and vanilla.

T&M: like the aroma it is very alcohol forward, probably could be aged a bit more. The finish contains chocolate. Feel is easily my least favorite part of the beer. Over carbonated in my opinion and not enough body.

Overall: wouldn't seek it out, I wouldn't say it is special.

Feb 21, 2021
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Thankin_Hank from Texas

4.32/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Dark and beautiful. Smells like chocolate coconut molasses. Tastes of molasses, chocolate coconut coffee and then a burn on my tongue like pepper. I love that. The alcohol is heavy but that's okay too. This will improve as it warms. It has great flavors as you sip. Take that big bad baptist gulp like you were outback of the church. Swish 'er all around and let rest on the tongue. Gulp. Fantastic. DEN-6782 13.0% ALC/VOL

Feb 18, 2021
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Ozzylizard from Pennsylvania

3.78/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

Big Bad Baptist Reserve from Epic. Purchased on 27/1/21 for $ 20.00 (Including tax) for a 22 oz bottle ($ 0.909/oz) from Franklin Beer, Franklin, PA. On the room temperature shelf at store and stored at home at 42 degrees. Reviewed 15/2/21. (Note: I use DD/MM/YY protocol.)
Stamped on label “REL #3 11.6% ALC/VOL SLC# 6195”. Served at 54.6 degrees in a hand washed and dried Jester King snifter. Final temperature 58.2 degrees.
Appearance – 3.5. Basically, looks like every other Imperial stout.
First pour – Brown (SRM 20), hazy.
Body – Black (SRM 40), opaque. When rear-lite, still opaque but with many tiny streams of effervescence.
Head – Average (Maximum 2.7 cm, aggressive center pour), sandy brown, high density, average retention, diminishing to a 0.7 cm crown heavily fed by effervescence, and a complete cap with a few rocks.
Lacing – Good. Tight bands of near-microscopic bubbles
Aroma – 3.5– Begins with weak roasted malt and a bit of char, no hops, no yeast.
Flavor – 4 – Begins with a weak chocolatey malt. Ends with weak coconut. No hops, no yeast. No alcohol (11.6 % ABV, as marked on the container) flavor or aroma. A slow gastric warming occurs but never becomes painful.
Palate – 4.25 – Medium, lightly creamy, soft carbonation.
Final impression and summation: 3.5 Decent Impy stout with mild flavors. No barrels or coffee found. Decent but incredibly overpriced.

Feb 15, 2021
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drdiesel9483 from Ohio

4.34/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look - black and thick with a nice tan head and sticky sticky lacing
Smell - roast malty cocoa whisky with a slight coffee
Taste - roasty malty cocoa whisky slight coconut and coffee
Feel - medium body light carb and creamy slightly
Overall - tasty

Feb 02, 2021
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mkh012 from Colorado

4.2/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours near-black with a ring of tan head.

The nose is dark chocolate, coconut, almond, and whiskey.

The taste follows. Primarily mocha and barrel character. The nose and taste are both relatively subdued for the ABV and description. This is cohesive but lacks a "wow" factor to put it over the top. The ghost of Almond Joy's past aged in whiskey and rum barrels.

The mouthfeel is medium. Mild to medium drying booze on the finish.

Overall, solid and worth the price of admission but nothing special.

Dec 20, 2020
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maximum12 from Minnesota

3/5  rDev -30.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Black bottle, black label, black beer of 22 oz. in liquid weight. My wife’s choice & split with same.

Black. Little to no head. After inhaling several cubic yards of air, I get a little roast. That’s it.

Big Bad Baptist Reserve fails to live up to the ingredients listed on that black label. The strongest of the sixty nine pound weaklings is the rum, which is faint. Bare roast, cocoa.

If the brewer was aiming for subtle, they missed & hit dull. Just beer. Expensive, boring, snooze-inducing beer that one could get for much, much less. Highly disappointing.

Oct 27, 2020
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jlindros from Massachusetts

4.41/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I haven't had a great beer in a while, so I want to break that streak. This one actually clocks in at 13%
Pours a small fizzy but very dark brown head with low retention, inky pitch black beer with long legs

nose is quite nice, big earthy roasted coffee up front, then quickly into coconut, toasted coconut, followed by layers of chocolate, ganache, dark chocolate, cocoa, nice mounds bar thing, a little nutty and some baking spices, caramel, biscuity cookie dough notes, a bit of sweet fruity rum and barrel notes

Taste brings a lot of rich cocoa, dark chocolate, choc ganache, even a little fudgey, with more baking spices and cookie dough, fair coconut again, as well as toasted coconut and a little marshmallowy nougat character, fair coffee, a little roasty and earthy as well as nutty, a little vanilla barrel, and some sweet fruity rum but not a lot, light warming alcohol, smooth alcohol, getting more fruity rummy as it warms, a bit of bitterness, drier finish with a bit more alcohol and fruity almost apple like rum characters, little bitterness and perfumey alcohol

Mouth is full body, rich thick a bit oily, med-lighter fizzy carb, light warming slight tingly alcohol

Overall solid, not my fav of the Baptists but good. Coconut was nice, rum barrel was nice but I wish it had a bit more on the taste, coffee was very strong on the nose, not as much on the taste but that's not a bad thing. nice layers of chocolate, etc, but I had really high expectations for this and it fell a bit short

Oct 05, 2020
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LiquidAmber from Washington

4.46/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours nearly black, appearing opaque black in the glass with a half finger dark khaki head that dissipates to a thick film with light lacing. Aroma of dark toasted malt, milk chocolate, vanilla and coffee, slightly boozy. Flavor is dark toasted malt with light char, milk and dark chocolate, vanilla, light coffee and a touch of molasses. Medium bodied with light to moderate creaminess. Like all other variations of this great stout, fine chocolate and lightly charred malt combined with light whiskey, vanilla and coffee. I'm getting more coffee and chocolate from the Reserve (even more than the chocolate variant I had earlier this year). I am barely able to detect a suggestion of coconut, but would not have noticed it unless I read the description of the blend. Whiskey is present, but not dominating; not getting any rum notes. The description says that this was not blended for crazy flavors and they are correct; nicely integrated with a deft hand with the additional coconut and coffee. Flavorful with good barrel character, a nice blend. Glad I snagged one of these. This year's version is a heftier 13%, a bit boozy, but within reason.

Jun 15, 2020
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StonedTrippin from Colorado

4.43/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

a special blend of the best barrels here, a new label on the thing, and the first of these i have seen thats waxed if i remember right, certainly spendy, but it seems worth it, a regal, mature, and complex stout with a ton of character. it has a frothing mocha head, more life than the brandy vanilla one we had the previous evening, and a lot more apparent viscosity too, this is pretty thick, leggy in the glass, and i can immediately smell some alcohol. along with it some barrel char, the sweet raw sugar character of the rum, plenty of coconut from that element of the blend, really quite tropical with the rum and coconut together, some bitter dark chocolate too and a little bit of coffee, way less than the brandy vanilla edition seemed to have, tons of wood. the flavor is sensational, even better than the nose, with the coconut more cohesive and intertwined now, lots of rich chocolate, wet oak, sweet vanilla and toffee, pipe tobacco, and warming alcohol that isnt over the top and less sharp than it smells. the wood is big in here, heavies it up, the dark grain and the cocoa stand out nicely too, and the low end on this is quite robust all up. smooth as can be to drink though, layered, and equal contributions from the rum and the whiskey barrels are obvious. really high quality stuff here, a good buy, and a beer that really doesnt seem to need any cellar time, its already mellow and refined and just drinks luxuriously. a phenomenal blend by any measure!

May 09, 2020
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CraftFan5 from New Jersey

4.3/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

23 April 2020 - Beer #76

Corona Day #42

Price: $19.99 at Berkeley Bowl West in Berkeley, CA

Appearance: 5 - looks pretty perfect. Absolutely black with a pleasant tan head consisting of tiny bubbles.

Nose: 5 - I get coconut and rum barrel, which an exceptional combination.

Taste: 4 - underwhelming. I'll be upfront; I am not a big fan of this series. It's usually way too much coffee and way too little barrel. This just doesn't have a whole lot of flavor. I get slight coffee bitterness, a fair amount of coconut, and a bit of barrel.

Mouth: 4 - rather thin, but it is sticky and coat-y.

Overall: 4 - decent, but just not a whole lot going on. Got a couple more from the series in the cellar; hope at least one impresses me.


May 04, 2020
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TreyIsWilson from Michigan

4.31/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Pours pitch black with a thin tan head. Good amount of soapy lacing.

S - Aroma coconut, dark chocolate and and whiskey.

T - The taste is dark chocolate, coffee, coconut, molasses, roasted malts, oak and whiskey.

M - Medium body with medium carbonation. Creamy mouthfeel with a soft dry finish.

O - Super tasty barrel aged stout. Great balance of flavors.

Apr 11, 2020
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stevoj from Idaho

4.53/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle at share last night. This was it. My favorite, hands down. Beautiful creamy pour. Big roasty, boozy aroma. Taste is molasses and chocolate, sweet malts, burnt toast, coffee, and a lot of bourbon notes. Velvety and slick. Damn near perfect.

Jan 08, 2020
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bluejacket74 from Ohio

4.31/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22 ounce black wax capped bottle, Release #3, 11.6% ABV, SLC #6195 stamped on the label (think it's a 2019 vintage). Served in a snifter, the beer pours dark brown/black with about an inch tan head that stuck around for a while. There's also a good amount of lacing. I like the aroma a lot, the brew smells like cocoa, vanilla, coconut, roasted malt, coffee, whiskey, and some rum. Have to say that the taste pretty much follows the aroma, but there's also the addition of some burnt/charred malt and dark fruity flavors. Barrel character is medium, not strong but not subtle either. Mouthfeel/body is medium/full, it's a bit slick and has a low-moderate amount of carbonation. Overall I thought this was a pretty good brew, definitely worth picking up! $18.99 a bottle.

Nov 16, 2019
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arizcards from North Carolina

4.45/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bomber from the Craft Beer Hop Stop on 8-16-19 for $14.99 (below cost according to the owner). No bottled date but suspect it was in July 2019; consumed on 11-15-19.

Beer poured black with a nice tan head with the original pour.

Nose is very nice, cocoa nibs forward with a good dose of whisky barrel and a touch of vanilla.

Taste is cocoa nibs over a large medium roasted malt base. Some coffee and vanilla are present. Whiskey barrel is melded in nicely, complimenting rather than overwhelming. Finish is well balanced.

Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied and very smooth.

Overall this is a really nice brew, glad i got to try it!

Nov 15, 2019
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REVZEB from Illinois

4.29/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Brownish black body with a light brown collar. Whiskey, oak, and coffee lead the nose, with bitter chocolate, rum, soil, coconut, and vanilla. Taste leans on the coffee, vanilla, and rum more than the nose indicate, a master of dark flavors but stays pretty bright in the feel all things considered. Scary easy to drink, sticky and chew feel without the weightiness, but gets a little thin in the middle. Is it awkward I think the original BBB is better? This is well worth your time however

Nov 07, 2019
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mschrei from Illinois

4.49/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark with thinning cola colored edging. Quickly dissipating tan head and minimal lacing. Smells of coffee, roasted malt, chocolate, mild barrel notes. Taste presents the same flavors in a different order. Chocolate and malt are more up front and stronger, but coffee asserts itself on the back end with astringency. There’s a slight boozy buzz underneath, very subtle. Feel changes as it warms. When cold, it’s thin, lighter bodied. As it warms, it thickens, becomes bigger, bolder. Mouth watering. For almost 12 percent, it’s well disguised. Enjoyable, and quite well done.

Oct 29, 2019
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Brutaltruth from Ohio

4.35/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From the 22 oz bomber in a snifter. This mighty Baptist pours a
deep and murky black with dark brown highlights and a nice head
of light brown foam that settles to a thick ring, thin wafting pool, and
displays some nice soapy lacing. Nose of rum barrel, faint bourbon,
dark cocoa, moderate coffee notes, and dark brown sugars mingling
with char and brulee. Flavors....oh dark cocoa and fudge
notes cascade over dark coffee/espresso with hints of cream and
bourbon with sweet dark rum giving notes of coconut and brulee
and a nicely balanced char with vanilla notes. Excellent mouth
feel for such a brew---slick, warming, coating, light carbonation,
full body, and a warm slightly dry and very rich finish.

I am a fan of the series, and think this one hits the mark.
A lot of flavors and a lot of character, almost too much,
but they are all presented well and for such a big brew
it is well balanced.

Excellent work!


Oct 05, 2019
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darktronica from Indiana

3.94/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

What I've always liked about Big Bad Baptist is that it lives up to the Big Bad moniker, with very aggressive coffee experimentation in each batch while still somehow achieving a modicum of balance. I've still enjoyed the double and triple barreled variants, but this one just isn't doing it for me in comparison. It's smooth and the rum barrel in the blend is fairly prominent, but by trade it's lost a lot of the Baptist character. The coffee is really subdued and earthy. I'd rather take the standard.

Sep 07, 2019
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BeardedWalrus from North Carolina

4.5/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber into a 10 oz snifter, pours dark black with a hint of brownish on the edges, generating a fingers width of tannish head with very sticky lacing. Nose is dessert levels of rich, roasted malts, milk chocolate, a touch of vanilla and molasses. Taste matches up, with additional bourbon barrel sweetness, light vanilla, and a balancing hint of bitterness. Feels is super chewy, with medium thickness and a lasting aftertaste. Overall another great entry into the Big Bad Baptist lineup, thanks to Hinda65 for sending me this gem.

Sep 02, 2019
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hoptheology from South Dakota

4.17/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22 oz bottle from Hinda65.
Carpe Brew'Em snifter.

Deep motor oil black with a creamy beige head of 1 finger. Recedes to a line shortly after, slight sparse lacing.

Complex nose of tobacco and dark roasted malts, with dark karo syrup, whiskey, coconut, oak, and fruity rum.

Flavor is burnt and roasted malts, dark sugars, tobacco, plum, vinous notes, rum barrel, vintage wood, coffee, slightly fruity yeast, and touches of vanilla. Smooth but firm piney bitterness.

Feel is nicely carbonated, biting, heavy, roasted, dry, and burning. Ends very roasty and very dry.

Overall, this beer is a hit. I still prefer their Triple Barrel Baptist over everything else they've done. Regardless, this is a great barrel aged stout with fantastic complexity and depth. Highly recommended.

Aug 14, 2019
Big Bad Baptist Reserve from Epic Brewing Company
Beer rating: 94 out of 100 with 103 ratings