Big Bad Baptist | Epic Brewing Company

Log in or Sign up to start rating.
BA SCORE
96
world-class
574 Reviews
Big Bad BaptistBig Bad Baptist
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Epic Brewing Company
Utah, United States | website

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
It’s Big, it’s Bad, Whiskey &/or Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Stout, with Coffee and Cocoa Nibs.

http://www.epicbrewing.com/the-beers/exponential-series/item/635-big-bad-baptist-imperial-stout

ABV varies by batch

Added by JohnGalt1 on 09-30-2011

BEER STATS
Reviews:
574
Ratings:
3,490
Avg:
4.32
pDev:
21.53%
 
 
Wants:
434
Gots:
1,192
For Trade:
124
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 574 | Ratings: 3,490
Photo of JohnnyMc
4.73/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Pours a nice, full dark brown head and looks black as night.

Has a velvety smooth, rich feel in the mouth. This has a strong smell of cocoa, coffee and a slight hint of whiskey. It is fine to drink on the colder side, but the cocoa comes out even more the warmer it gets.

The taste has a strong amount of black coffee, cocoa and subtle sweetness of aged whiskey with a dry aftertaste.

Even though there is a high ABV (11.7) this is extremely easy to drink and is light-medium bodied not very thick and heavy despite the rich flavors.

I'm going to pick up another bottle or two and see how it ages. This is my new favorite from Epic and I would love to have this on tap.

 674 characters

Photo of bcostner1
4.95/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Release #4; 11.1% ABV.

A: Virtually pitch black. Nice rich khaki head that lingers. Pours with some definite viscosity.

S: Smells like coffee with some vanilla creamer added. Some bourbon and faint chocolate undertones.

T: WOW...this is phenomenal. So complex. Starts out sweet with some mild bourbon (emphasis on the mild...which is good b/c it doesn't overpower everything else that's going on) and vanilla flavors. Some definite molasses and brown sugar there too. Towards the middle I'm getting more of that "coffee creamer" taste. The finish is mainly coffee bitterness with a little bit of sweet milk chocolate and bitter cocoa. The coffee definitely lingers for a while. Damn, I LOVE this stuff!

M: Very smooth and silky. ABV is extremely well hidden. Great thick, viscous body yet very highly drinkable. This one could be dangerous.

Both bourbon barrel and coffee stouts are among my favorite styles. This one merges them to perfection in my opinion. I'm not sure why this beer hasn't garnered more attention. I think it definitely deserves it. I highly recommend this to anyone who enjoys these styles and I will absolutely be seeking more out myself if/when given the opportunity. Fantastic!

 1,206 characters

Photo of crossovert
3.33/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

650ml bottle. Release #3.

Pours a blackish brown with a big tan head that leaves some nice lacing.

Coffee dominates the smell. I am not getting the bourbon and only slight cocoa.

Coffee also dominates the flavor. I feel like the flavors aren't meshing in this one. It just tastes like a coffee stout to the nth degree.

 321 characters

Photo of ArchEnemyBrew
3.57/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into darkness tulip 2-12-12

A: Pours a deep black with a dark khaki colored head that is about 1" deep.

S: Smells like fresh roasted coffee, dark chocolate, a bit of smoke and some booze as well. Don't get much barrel character but that doesn't detract from the nose.

T: This is where the beer falls apart. Tastes of coffee and ashtray. The burnt out cigarette flavor in my mouth is just not appealing to me.

M: Medium bodied with a slight alcohol burn. Smoky/ashy flavor lingers.

O: Loved the smell of this beer but the taste killed it for me. Not enough barrel character and too much harsh coffee flavor for me. Won't seek out again.

 647 characters

Photo of argock
4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz brown bottle into a clear glass snifter. Release #3 on label. Purchased at Wine Warehouse (Charlottesville, VA) for $13.99.

A: Black body with 1-finger beige cookie colored head with big bubbles and decent retention with only spotty lacing.

S: Cocoa and dark chocolate with a fairly strong unfermented almost lactose sweetness with some light whiskey sharpness and bitter black coffee. I wish all of these components were more prominent, but there is nothing wrong with this nose.

T: The flavor is sweeter than expected all the way through with accents of strong black coffee and espresso. The milk chocolate middle add some sweetness. The roast comes through more as the beer warms giving some strong tobacco character. The whiskey adds a touch of vanilla sweetness but not much else.

M: I bumped this up a notch because this dangerously does not drink like 11.4% -- the body is medium and very silky and slick.

O: I liked this beer but like a little more presence. It's a good stout but needs a little more body and a little less sweetness. I agree with those that don't think this will age well - the alcohol is amazingly well-hidden and I think the base stout is a little lacking in complexity.

 1,224 characters

Photo of bballmj2k
4.38/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Surprised and impressed with this beer.

A - standard stout - bit more head than normal for a barrel aged beer.

S - much dark chocolate, coffee, bit of whiskey

T - really great flavors. This beer reminds me of an FBS/KBS hybrid. Lots of coffee but incredibly smooth, sweet and bitter.

M - this is where the beer wins. For 11.3 alcohol there's such a minimal burn with a beautiful creamy mouthfeel.

O - excellent and highly recommended. Up there with the best bal-aged stouts.

 483 characters

Photo of Pencible
4.37/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: This poured an opaque black with a little tan head.
S: It smelled like huge fresh black coffee, with oak and toasted coconut and a little dark chocolate and molasses.
T: It tasted like lots of fresh black coffee, with some bitter dark chocolate and oak, and a little toasted coconut and smoke. It had a clean and surprisingly mellow bitter aftertaste.
M: It was slightly thick with lots of carbonation. Decent body.
D: This was a great coffee stout, up there with Black Xantus, and better than Cafe Royale. I loved the scent and taste. The body was a bit weak, but finish was so smooth, it was really easy to drink. Should be drunk fresh, but may be interesting to age. Definitely recommended.

 696 characters

Photo of minnesotaryan
4.3/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a New Belgium globe.

Pours black, minimal milk chocolate colored foam that quickly dissipates.

Smells of chocolate, espresso and a touch of roastyness, generally a pleasing aroma.

Tastes very sweet! this is rich, like a decadent chocolate pudding infused with a top shelf whiskey. There are coffee/espresso notes and a bit of roasted malt, but what really stands out to me is the mix of the cocoa nibs and the barrel flavor, they play off each other wonderfully.

Thick and syrupy yet wonderfully smooth.

This could be a dessert, I can see why this is highly sought after.

 588 characters

Photo of r0nyn
4.27/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bomber into my DFH snifter.

As it settles in the glass, the beer looks a bit on the thin side, with light edges and a lower viscosity than I like to see in my imperial stouts. Quarter-inch light brown head leaves a decent amount of lacing. Nose reveals plenty of that whiskey barrel aroma, along with a sweet malt base. Surprisingly, the coffee and chocolate are subdue in comparison to the other smells. Not sure why, but they're still there and provide for a pleasant aroma.

Fortunately, the taste is where the coffee and chocolate really come into play. There's cocoa and bittersweet coffee everywhere, almost like a really fresh batch of FBS. Solid malt backbone combines with the sweet tastes, making this very tasty and easy to drink. Coupled with the fact the bourbon-barrel aging and alcohol are only very slightly detectable, this brew becomes really dangerous quite quickly. Mouthfeel is smooth and silky. Would have liked a bit more body to it to pack a bigger punch, but it's really just nitpicking at this point.

Definitely one of the most coffee-forward beers I've ever had the pleasure of imbibing. A must-try if you're at all into coffee and/or barrel-aged beers. Age would probably lessen the essence of this brew, so I'd suggest drinking it sooner rather than later.

 1,303 characters

Photo of mikereaser
4.07/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a pitch black with 2 fingers of tan foam that leaves solid lacing down the glass as the foam retreats.
S - Big coffee aroma is what hits you first, then you start to notice the chocolate and slight hints of the whiskey barrel and even some smokiness. Very nice aroma that reminds you of your morning cup of coffee.
T - Wow, the coffee really comes through in the taste. There is some nice roasted malts along with a hint of smoke. I might be picking up the whiskey a bit but its certainly not a strong note.
The flavor is very enjoyable.
M/D - Smooth bodied, almost creamy mouthfeel, very little carbonation. Slightly oily body as well. This is very easy to drink and hides the alcohol very well. Too well.

 716 characters

Photo of 4thelvofbeer
4/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice! Great stout. Dark, deep black, with a smell of strong iced coffee. Tastes as it smells--coffee, syrup, and chocolate notes. Silky smooth on the palate. One of the better stouts I've recently had. Bottle price is a little high, but worth the extra cost. Very nice overall!

 277 characters

Photo of GilGarp
4.32/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch #3.

Served at cellar temp into a goblet.

BBB is nearly black in color with creamy tan head. It settles quickly and leaves no lacing.

Aroma is surprisingly intense with bitter chocolate and dark roasted coffee.

Flavor is huge as well with bourbon, chocolate, coffee, and smoke. It's layered, deep and complex. A little bit of grass and earthy quality too.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, a little on the thin side for such a big stout. The alcohol is strong but not overly hot.

Overall a really tasty, interesting, and unusual stout.

 540 characters

Photo of Beaver13
3.5/5  rDev -19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle. Pours dark brown black with a smallish light brown head that goes to a thin film and leaves some lacing.

The aroma is sweet fudgy chocolate and a little coffee. Boozy bourbon comes out as it warms.

The flavor is sweet fudgy chocolate with a lot of roast to balance and some slightly acidic roasted coffee. As I drink more, the burnt, ashy, char roast dominates. Some vanilla and bourbon come out too. The mouthfeel is light to medium bodied and a little watery.

Overall, almost really good, but I end up thinking ashy cigarettes and day old coffee.

 565 characters

Photo of quaybr
4.27/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Oh my oh my, this is a fine beer.

Served in a tulip glass, a bubbly mocha head sits atop this thick black ale. The head dissipates quickly, though, and can only be brought back (modestly) with some excessive swirling.

Smell is pretty remarkable: heavy coffee notes (almost like getting a slight whiff of french press) along with cocoa. Some alcohol present in the nose, too.

Taste is of bold roasted and chocolate malts. This is balanced well, not too sweet, not too bitter. A bit of alcohol resonates as it washes down.

This is a thick-bodied beer but still manages to go down without any sludge or oily residue. Relatively little carbonation suits this beer quite fine. Well done.

This is a beer worth seeking. And as is so often true, I believe it is even more delicious in the company of good friends. Great beer.

 822 characters

Photo of mdfb79
4.03/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 01/28/12 notes. Shared with some friends, 22 oz. bottle into a tulip.

a - Pours a pitch black color with one finger of dark tan head and moderate carbonation evident. Looks great.

s - Smells of coffee, cocoa, roasted malts, bitter chocolate, whiskey, oak, and toasted malts. Lots of coffee for a whiskey barrel aged stout, but still very nice.

t - Tastes of coffee, cocoa, roasted malts, vanilla, coffee grinds, whiskey, oak, and choclate. Lots of coffee again, and some nice vanilla here. I like the taste a little bit more than the nose.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Smooth and not very hot.

o - Overall a really nice stout; one of the best beers I've had from Epic so far. I thought there was a lot more coffee then whiskey in the nose and taste, but still really liked it. Would have it again.

 820 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
4.04/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a taster glass.

Pours near black with a thin mocha head. Not too much in the way of lacing. The nose carries some really nice cocoa and whiskey. Really nice combination and well done here. A bit of vanilla and oak in the background. The flavor isn't quite as intense as the nose, but still pretty good. Mouthfeel has a bit of heat, and could be a bit thicker. Overall, really a pretty tasty brew.

 425 characters

Photo of russwbeck
4.22/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Release #1 enjoyed with rjochman

A: Pours out of the bottle black and rests in the glass pretty viscous. A big brown head raises up, but recedes quickly. Not a ton of lacing or carbonation that I can see. Wish the head stuck around a bit longer.

S: The aroma on this is really impressive. The amount of coffee and chocolate really blows me away, but the whiskey is really underneath, and understated. While the aroma on this is quite bold the balance is there, which equally as impressive.

T: I've had stouts with coffee in it before, but wow this is a new experience. The aftertaste is exactly the same as when I take a sip of actual coffee. Really blown away about just how much this tastes like coffee. Up front is chocolate, vanilla, and a bit of whiskey. After a brief second, this becomes all about the coffee.

MF: Low carbonation, thick body, and pretty damn drinkable. The finish is so dry. I just can't stop taking sips the taste is so interesting.

O: I thought this was a hit, really glad I tried it. At $12.99 I thought this was definitely worth it. Interested to see how the other releases stack up.

Release #3

A: Just as deep and dark as Release #1 with a better head retention. Nice brown head, with minimal lacing.

S: The smell is a little less balanced. Tons of coffee, but less chocolate and certainly no whiskey at all. Let's see what happens with the taste.

T: The taste is a little better, but still after a few releases I was hoping this would have improved. Ton of coffee, the aftertaste is still similar to drinking an actual cup of coffee, but the chocolate is a bit thin, less vanilla, and again no whiskey.

MF: Not quite as thick. Perhaps this would benefit from some age as Release #1 was clearly better.

O: At $11.99 I think this is definitely still worth it. Expected more, but I still definitely enjoyed it. Wish the barrel aging was a bit more present.

Release #4

A: Black pour with a couple fingers of brown head. The retention and lacing are both wonderful. This is a great looking beer. 4.5

S: Amazingly the smell is all coffee. Can't believe how deep and dark this beer is and for it to be all coffee. The bourbon and oak lie underneath with a strong chocolate character. Great balance, but coffee focused. 4.5

T: Like the aroma, the coffee dominates the taste. A bit too much for me honestly. Bourbon hangs out, making its presence known as the beer warms, but the chocolate and barrel characteristics are secondary to the coffee. I think this needs a few months to balance out. The other dimensions are there. Just not strong enough. 3.5

MF: The body is full and the carbonation is a bit high as well. Big Bad Baptist is crazy drinkable and sports a dry finish. This is a great beer. 4

O: Overall, I wish the coffee was stepped back a bit and the bourbon was more prominent. This beer is top notch, but I'm thinking it needs some age to make all the flavors come together. Not my favorite of the releases, but I would never turn it down. 4

 2,994 characters

Photo of DonDirkA
4.65/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Release #2, 11.3% ABV. Very very strong nose of roasted black coffee. Cocoa scents weave their way in and out through the coffee smell. The coffee is dominant through the sip and the swallow, but not in an overbearing way, as can be the issue with many coffee stouts. There is a slight trace of chocolate that is followed by a subtle oakiness. The swallow is a bit hot, no doubt from the whiskey barrel aging, but not uncomfortably so. The rich mouthfeel is complimented by the coffee flavors that wash everything down and stick around on your tongue long after you've finished. Overall this a pretty extreme beer from all angles and it will definitely be too much for some but fans of strong, burly stouts will find plenty to love here.

 737 characters

Photo of output01x
3.86/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz. capped bottle (Release #1) into a snifter glass.

A vigorous pour yields a 1 1/2-finger tan-colored head that fades over the course of a couple minutes to a thick, clumpy dusting and thick foam ring. The body is a nice near black with no traces of color when held to light. Some decent lacing can be seen throughout consumption.

A subdued whiskey (almost like well liquor) aroma is the first and strongest character of the nose. Some baker's chocolate and roasted coffee beans aromas are also there but take a little digging to find.

Dark and bittersweet chocolate, freshly roasted coffee beans, concentrated espresso, and just a touch of dark fruit (black cherry?) all hit the tongue at first sip. As the beer is swallowed, dark and milk chocolate flavors really come out along with more espresso. Just a hint of bourbon-like alcohol warmth is noticed in the back of the throat. A nice black coffee aftertaste settles in between sips.

Medium to full bodied with moderate carbonation, this beer isn't as creamy as it is silky. The body is a bit on the light side for an 11.7% ABV Imperial Stout, which helps to keep this beer from becoming overly sticky and syrupy (which it is neither). The carbonation is almost unnoticeable but is definitely doing a fantastic job in the background. This beer really slides over the tongue smoothly while coating it completely.

 1,387 characters

Photo of Viciousknishs
3.92/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- pours a solid black color with a finger and a half of creamy beige colored head. Good retention no lacing.

S- huge one two bunch of roasty malt and espresso roast oily coffee beans. The middle is cocoa nibs and rich gourmet dark chocolate. Soft oak tones on the finish with a touch of whiskey.

T- huge dark roast French press coffee(just had some this morning) permeates this brew with layers of oily coffee bean and double shot espresso. The cocoa nibs come out in the middle with a bit of dark chocolate as well. Some roasty malt blends in as well with a slight char. Soft oak and a touch of burnt caramel hit the palate on the finish with a whisper of whiskey and alcohol warmth.

MF- oily coffee like mouthfeel with a medium body and low carbonation.

D- good drinkability

Overall the coffee dominates the brew with other flavors coming in softer and subtle. Pretty tasty if you like coffee.

 901 characters

Photo of challenja
5/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served On Tap at Fireworks in Courthouse/ Arlington VA

A: Dark Midnight Black Ink.
S: Dark milk chocolate, light smoke, malt and cherries
T: Dark milk chocolate, french press Colombian coffee, Dark cherries, bready malt, raspberry tart. Quite tasty, the creamy bourbon barrel comes on last i n the taste profile but the subtle hear comes in the third layer behind the chocolate, and coffee.
M: Light carbonation that tingles the back part of my throat. Milk and smooth. Like melted milk chocolate.
O: This is one amazing stout! I had some doubts but this one now is number 3 all time! Gonna go back for some more soon and get me a couple of overpriced bottles to stock up on!

 677 characters

Photo of Jimmys
4.51/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

bomber. release #3.

A: pitch black with a dark brown head. retention really is not very impressive. neither is the lacing.

S: coffee all up in your face. and chocolate. man this is inviting. a little bit of bitterness with dark burnt grain.

T: similar to the nose, a rich french roast starts the palate off. vanilla beans. dark chocolate. burnt grains. this thing is complex with new flavors coming across each sip. the flavor lingers with coffee and chocolate. bitter. absolutely fantastic.

M: mild carbonation. definitely a full body.

D: man this is good. the flavor as well as the nose is everything i want in a coffee stout. really impressed and well worth the search.

 682 characters

Photo of BearsOnAcid
3.95/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Heard good things. Batch #2, just released I believe.

Dark brown to black pour. Some clarity in the light. Small coffee colored head.

Picking up a lot of coffee in the nose. Roasted malts, dark chocolate, but mostly dominated by coffee.

Taste had even more coffee. It was very bold and robust. Chocolate underneath. Bitter with a medium sweetness for an imperial stout. I had a little trouble picking up the whiskey barrel. At times, I tasted some vanilla, oak, and maybe some honey but it wasn't very forward at all so I wasn't sure if I was just imagining it. Mouthfeel was thinner than I'd like.

This was a nice surprise from Epic and definitely worth a try. Excellent price too. I hope they get some more character from the barrel for the next batch. This coud be a good substitute for Bourbon County Coffee.

 816 characters

Photo of Stigs
4.32/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle - "Release #2"

served in a large snifter

A - pours with a thin film of light tan foam, settling to some random wet lacing around the glass and a few floating bubbles. the beer is not quite black, but deep, dark brown when held up to light.

S - dominating is some rich, bold french roast coffee, charred oak, and deep roasted malts. warming brings in some darker milk chocolate, tannic oak, and a hit of bourbon.

T - taste follows suit from the smell, with rich coffee being in the forefront...slightly bitter, roasty, quite nice if you enjoy your coffee that way (i do!). balancing sweetness of chocolate, roasted malts, and vanilla. a bit on the hoppy side, adds another layer, this one is probably best fresh. very nice.

M - medium, slightly creamy body with a touch of lingering sweetness. moderate carbonation lifts the flavors a bit, providing a vehicle for the massive coffee and malty roastiness to settle.

O - unsure about this one for the first few sips but it really grew one me. love the bold, coffee-forward taste. making for a wonderful sipper on a cold snowy night. my first epic beer, this one is really well done.

 1,149 characters

Photo of azdback
4.32/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into an Arrogant Bastard pint glass. Dark black but not all light sucking. Edges reveal just the slightest bit of light. Head rises quickly and is a bit lighter than coco color and is creamy smooth while it lasts. Head dissipates just as quickly as it showed up.

Smell is charred and burnt malts. Lots of dark roasted coffee, some vanilla and oak. Just a hint of bourbon. Quite nice.

Taste is fantastic. Just like the smell it is loaded with dark roasted coffee. There is some sweet vanilla bean and charred oak barrel. The alcohol at %11.3 is disguised very well.

Mouth isn't as thick and chewy as I would expect for an Imperial Stout, but is still quite good. It has medium carbonation and a long wet finish.

Overall, I really liked this a lot. This is so under the radar of "Barrel Aged Imperial Stouts out there. It wasn't very cheap and maybe that's a down fall but this was truly wonderful beer. Thanks to Sylvia for getting the last two cases this states going to see.

 987 characters

Big Bad Baptist from Epic Brewing Company
4.32 out of 5 based on 3,490 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Extreme Beer Fest® Cometh

    February 3-4, 2017. Boston, Mass. Limited tickets available. Prepare for epicness.

    Learn More
  • Free Trial Subscription

    Reside in the US? Interested in a free 1-month trial subscription to the print edition of BeerAdvocate magazine?

    Yes! Sign Me Up!