Welcome to BeerAdvocate!

Looking to talk, rate or trade beer? Join today by creating your free account.

Dismiss Notice
Curious about recent updates to the site and app? Check the Announcements forum for updates.
Dismiss Notice
Love Belgian Beer?

Join us Sep 17 in Portland, Maine for Return of the Belgian Beer Fest, featuring hundreds of authentic Belgian beers and Belgian-inspired offerings.

Tickets + more: beeradvocate.com/belgian

Big Bad Baptist | Epic Brewing Company

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
96
world-class
567 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:
567
Ratings:
3,465
Avg:
4.31
pDev:
21.58%
 
 
Wants:
429
Gots:
1,185
For Trade:
124
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 567 | Ratings: 3,465
Photo of portia99
4.54/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle (release #3, 11.4% ABV) courtesy of hoppymcgee. Thanks again Greg! Poured into a Brooklyn snifter.

A - Pours an almost pitch black color that is quite opaque in the glass. A finger of dense, dark brown head lingers for a minute or two and falls slowly to the surface leaving a foamy collar and some lacing on the glass.

S - From a distance to the glass, my first impression is a chocolate donut. Closer inspection changes this and reveals much more. Serious coffee which smells great, dark chocolate, faint hints of whiskey, a bit of char, lots of dark roasted malt. Actually reminds me quite a bit to a KBS. I hope this tastes as good as it smells.

T - Coffee is still front and center in the flavor but perhaps is second in intensity behind a prominent charcoal and burnt toast aspect. Cocoa nibs come thru nicely especially towards the finish. Barrel is extremely subtle but definitely adds a layer of nuance. Doesn't quite stand up to KBS or its own aroma, but this is really, really good.

M - Medium bodied with a lower level carbonation that is a touch tingly...or is that the whiskey? If it is the whiskey it is really the only evidence of the spirit in the mouthfeel. Alcohol is well hidden, no heat at all, flavor contribution is subtle but complementary. Maybe the weakest aspect of this beer, but that is a bit nit-picky and definitely speaks to how good the other aspects of this stout are.

O - Very glad Greg suggested this one to me...honestly hadn't heard of it at the time and had to look it up. This is one of the better imperial stouts I've had recently...really like the powerful coffee flavors, subtle barrel treatment, amazing aroma. Would really like to get another bottle of this one somewhere down the road.

 1,748 characters

Photo of AmericanGirl90
4.54/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

As a coffee addict, this beer had me sold just by the smell. A strong whiff of espresso, cocoa, alcohol, and vanilla. Color was deep black with no light escaping.

Bold taste of espresso, cocoa, and alcohol/malt, but not sharp at all. Quite mellow, balanced, and easy to drink...slowly. Slight hint of oak and vanilla in the back.

If you like coffee, this is a fantastic beer for you.

 385 characters

Photo of RoamingGnome
4.54/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Epic Brewing Big Bad Baptist

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a CBS snifter. Served at cellar temperature.

A) Thick black brew with a dark tan head. Really nice retention and some spotty lacing too. This has some legs.

S) Heavy on the coffee... A fresh ground dark roast. This is all about coffee. Is this beer??? A little bit of dark chocolate, but mostly coffee. If you love coffee, you will love this aroma. I am a coffee lover...

T) Again, a whole lot of coffee in the flavor. The cocoa nibs are also noted. I don't get a whole lot of barrel aging presence in the flavor, perhaps a bit of wood. The alcohol is well hidden, and just slightly detected on the backend.

M) Near full bodied with lighter carbonation. This goes down nice a smooth. A good amount of coffee bitterness coats the palate. Light alcohol. Nice aftertaste....

O) A really well made beer right here. While Bourbon County Brand Coffee Stout is clearly the gold medal winner in this category, I'm of the opinion Big Bad Baptist likely makes the medal stand. Glad to recommend this beer...

 1,076 characters

Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.53/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bomber into a snifter.

Pours aggressively without me even trying and produces a fizziness that forms into a finger and a half, dark khaki-colored head. There's a considerable amount of carbonation visible and that forms little colonies on the sides of the glass, creating the phenomenon in which this otherwise pitch black liquid appears lighter. A thin lace eventually settles over the beer.

Even as I cracked the bottle, the strong dark coffee aroma was prominent. Vanilla and caramel hit my nose when I take a whiff and combine with the coffee to suggest a mocha or other coffee concoction. The coffee aroma is more suggestive of beans than the liquid product, the smell is so intensely robust and potent. I also get dark chocolate as well, like a pure bar. This beer is impressive on the nose alone.

Oh my, this is killer. The whiskey adds a subtle spice, smoke and peat, without hijacking the beer or its other tastes. Dark chocolate, vanilla, and coffee swirl around, suggesting a vanilla coffee then a mocha, as if the two drinks were poured together. And much like a combination of those two drinks, this beer is both creamy and smooth, yet still feels burly and big.

I'd consider this beer almost perfect, but the one thing I have to slightly ding it for is a hint of odd, almost plasticky flavor I get with the lingering whisky. I think it's just a characteristic of the whisky doing something funny and it is only mildly noticeable, but without that, I think I'd give this a 5 in taste and mouthfeel.

 1,532 characters

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

This beer is awesome! Smell is of coffee, caramel, and sweet malt. Taste is of dark roasted coffee, vanilla, roasted malt, dark chocolate, and finishes with a boozy whiskey flavor. It looks good with a light brown head that becomes a creamy ring and the beer is jet black. The feel is very thick, creamy, and like velvet. Overall this is a great beer! I will drink as much as i can get!

 386 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
4.53/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bottle: Poured a pitch-black color stout with a nice large dark brown foamy head with good retention. Aroma of chocolate notes with light vanilla and coffee notes is quite awesome. Taste is also a great mix of creamy chocolate notes with some vanilla and bourbon notes and light floral coffee notes which is well integrated in the mix. Body has nice creamy texture with good carbonation and no real apparent alcohol notes. Super well-balanced with great drinkability.

 467 characters

Photo of pollocwr
4.53/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Such a tasty beer. Strong coffee flavors with some bitter chocolate. Smooth all the way through. Only downside for me was a smokey flavor somewhere in the middle. Still good and will be better after sitting for 2 years.

 219 characters

Photo of KingofHops
4.53/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Rich dark pour with an exquisite head and color. Easily mistaken for a rich cup of coffee, the appearance clearly reflects that chocolate and java elements, smooth feel with a perfect complement of carbonation. The tones of java are unmistakable and are perfectly complimented by the settle chocolate hint. Fantastic imperial stout, one that most certainly requires indulging on multiple occasions.

 398 characters

Photo of bowzer4birdie
4.53/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 27 poured into a BCBS snifter.

Pours dark as night with minimal dark brown / tan head which quickly dissipates. Abundance of dark chocolate and roasted coffee, my favorite! Only drawback here is that I wish I could taste the barrel, hardly if even noticeable here. Very velvety and creamy body with no alcohol burn at all.
Simply delicious but where's the booze? :-)

 373 characters

Photo of DovaliHops
4.53/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a thick, pitch black color with a large, brownish-java colored head that goes down slowly. Scent is...amazing...So much fresh coffee in the aroma. Sweet vanilla aromas with subtle oak. A good amount of bourbon whiskey in the nose. Dark chocolate with more coffee and espresso. Such an inviting aroma. Taste is just as good! At first, I get sweet vanilla and bourbon. A bit of a chocolate liqueur flavor as well. Fresh espresso with a hint of coconut and dark fruits. More bourbon in the finish. High ABV is noticeable, but well-balanced with the flavors. Mouthfeel is full-bodied and creamy. Drinkability is high, especially for such a big beer. Overall, I was blown away by this beer. I haven't been too impressed by all the other offering I have had from Epic, but this one definitely is EPIC (as much as I hate to use that overused word). Definitely goes up there with the BCBSs, Parabolas, and KBSs.

 909 characters

Photo of stakem
4.52/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Batch #3 care of joefc, thanks man! Bomber into a cervoise, the brew appears black with a finger of brown to khaki head that fades slow leaving some stringy lace sticking to the glass. A swirl revives about a finger back to the surface and paints some spotty lacing effect on the glass. When held to the light, the brew shows some ruby clarity through the body.

The smell is robust with earthy coffee. For being a year old at this point, it is still smelling pretty fantastic. I can only dream about how awesome the sumatra versions must be when fresh. The coffee imparts its own unique blend of citrus aspect mixed with hops. There is a raw oak quality about this that blends into the earthiness mixing with some mineral aspect that is almost dusty to rusty. The roasted aspect of the grain provides a bit of chocolate and a tang of whiskey becomes more evident as the brew warms up.

The taste is very roasty from a combination of heavily kilned grains and strong coffee flavors that are both earthy and include a bit of citrus coffee bean elements. Some warming alcohol is present with an accenting whiskey tang. The coffee's earthen aspect reminds me very much of kopi luwak for some reason. More sips reveal a bit of dusty to almost rusty mineral inclusion that while awkward at first dissolve away into a flavor of nothing but coffee and roasted grains that are at this point almost like milk chocolate with a bit of herbal hop flavoring.

This is a medium to lighter bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. I tip my hat to epic brewing company for making a seriously epic coffee stout. The alcohol is masterfully integrated and while the coffee flavors push to be almost excessive and overdone, it is fantastic. I need to try the other batches of this ASAP.

 1,774 characters

Photo of puck1225
4.52/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap into a small tulip glass. Very strong coffee smell. A beautiful dark brown, almost black, color. Excellent head and lacing. The taste was not subtle! Very strong dark chocolate, and strong cappuccino taste. A bit boozy,as expected. A very enjoyable stout.

 262 characters

Photo of SerialTicker
4.52/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Batch 59. Just $12 for a bomber. Saw this on the shelf by accident and knew I had to grab it. I meant to have it awhile ago when it first hit Michigan but I passed on it for some stupid reason. Looking forward to this one -- a "reasonably priced" BBA'd stout? Damn, please.

Appearance: Poured hard into an over-sized Sam Adams Perfect Pint. Of course, pitch black in color. A couple fingers of a creamy dark brown head float on top for a little while, but it dies down to half a finger and stays there for quite awhile. Not a ton of lacing, but some.

Smell: Whiskey barrel and coffee. I could go on and on, but that's what it boils down to. Not a crazy amount of whiskey barrel, but it has a very nice presence. Loads of dark roast coffee with just a little bit of chocolate from the cocoa nibs. Not a shit load of depth, but it's rich, bold, and super inviting.

Taste/feel: Creamy mouthfeel is what stands out to me right away with a super awesome dark coffee flavor, sans some of the bitterness. There's a nice milk chocolate sweetness to balance it out a bit with just a tiny bit of the barrel in there as well -- I find the barrel more apparent in the aroma. There's actually not much booze, at least when it's cold. The mouth feel is really what makes this beer. The smell and taste are great, but the feel sends it over.

In a word, delicious. I find that this may be one of the very best value beers out there ... at least for barrel aged beers. In that case, it may be the best. The barrel aging isn't strong in this beer, it's very accenting more than anything. The coffee is heavy in this beer, so I hope you like that, but the chocolate with the mouthfeel and bittersweet finish makes for something special.

Honestly, this tastes a lot to me how I imagine Founders Breakfast Stout tasting if it were aged in a barrel... I absolutely love that beer, and I like this beer just the same or maybe very slightly more. They really are similar beers with fabulous coffee flavor, and an awesome mouthfeel. Needless to say, this is a must-buy.

 2,049 characters

Photo of MTKATL
4.52/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This is a big beer. 12.2% with very full flavor of cocoa, coffee, and booze. The nose is very boozy, but the taste is more coffee and chocolate. Mouthfeel is full without being overly thick. This is a great beer.

 212 characters

Photo of brewdude1982
4.52/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This was a bomber and poured into a snifter for this review however I have had it on draft as well.

A: 4.0 nice and dark with slight head
S:  4.5 rich and malty with a slight whiskey hint
T: 4.5 lovely rich dark malts that lead into one of the best combinations of stout and bourbon
MF: 5.0 very very very full body that gives and gives. Such a nice great finish that ends in this amazing bourbon flourish
O: 4.5 this beer is one of my favorite bourbon Stouts that I have ever tasted

 485 characters

Photo of HopBomb515
4.52/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Black with a coffee colored head and spotty lacing. Notes of coffee, chocolate, bourbon, wood, vanilla, coconut, burnt toast, and light earth. Full body, creamy, chalky and slightly dry. This is an amazing bourbon barrel aged stout. The chalky feel isn't my preference but this is well done despite this.

 308 characters

Photo of JohnGalt1
4.51/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked this one up tonight at Brewforia Bown... Paid about $15ish... Christ .. Epic is getting pretty damn proud of their bottles :-) Seriously though, this is a great beer... Poured into my HotD goblet.... 3/4" dark tan head with little lacing atop an obviously black brew.. spotty lacing.

The aroma is amazing.... it immediately reminds me of Johnnie's Diner in McConnellsburg PA... 1st day of deer season... 4:00 AM.. Very Strong coffee... and NOW what I know as whiskey. :-) I was young... come on.. give me a break.

The nose is pretty phenomenal... tons of coffee beans.. lite cocoa... and there is a decent whiskey note that really doesn't jive as what I think of as "bourbon" ... almost an Irish whiskey nose.

Flavor has much more cocoa and a significant boost in the whiskey department... still right now, the coffee is the big player.. cold brewed and loving it.. the gears mesh perfectly .. cocoa nibs come across as milk chocolate with the lite malty sweetness..

I love that the "stout" flavors are in the background compared to the coffee and the cocoa... and whiskey... For a brew this big, it works very very well right now... I do NOT think this is an ager... whiskey notes come proud and sorta intrusive with warmth, but it still works. Coffee in beer drops off quickly.

I loved this brew.. Brewforia Chris hooked it up... Nice A quality beer easily.

3.5/5/4.5/4/4.5

 1,401 characters

Photo of CoreyC
4.51/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A - black with nice tan head
S - very good, strong roast chocolate
T - nicely sweet chocolate, roast malt, with a clean finish
M- lighter than expected
O - awesome IS, for a fresh stout very good

 196 characters

Photo of MacMalt
4.51/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bomber into snifter. It's jet black in color with a fairly thin, mocha colored head and lacing, which quickly dissipated except for the edge of the glass. The smell features burnt, dark coffee, dark chocolate, nuts, and char, with a hint of whiskey. What a flavor: dark roast coffee, sweet vanilla, cocoa, dark malt, nuts, with a nice dose of whiskey. This is a medium-bodied, stout, with moderate carbonation, and you definitely notice the 11.8% ABV. This is truly a sipper. Overall, this is one of the finest stouts I've ever tasted! About the only thing missing is a little dark fruit. I wish this were easier to find in New Jersey.

 656 characters

Photo of Jimmys
4.51/5  rDev +4.6%
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 don1481
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

#23 on tap at Stubbys MKE.

Poured into an Epic glass.

Appearance: pours dark, dark with a surprisingly lingering khaki head.

Smell: holy coffee notes, Batman. some chocolate, but this is definitely coffee. No booze notes to mention.

Taste: for something that's 11.5% the alcohol is well masked here. Neither the coffee nor the chocolate are overpowering. It's a pretty nice dance they're doing here.

Mouthfeel: Very clean. Not a strong aftertaste.

Overall: Dangerously sessionable. I have a bottle of this release aging at home. Very excited to see how this turns out.

Update 10-4-14: opened one of the release 27 bottles I was cellaring. So awesome. Even more dangerously sessionable than before. Just... wow. This puts Speedway Stout to shame. And I LOVE Speedway Stout.

I am so happy I still have another 23 and 27 in the cellar.

Review adjusted upwards slightly to reflect the 27 from the cellar.

 910 characters

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

Review from memory - shared at a tasting about a year ago. Pitch black pour with a fluffy tan head. Smells of roasted malts, coffee and dark chocolate. The notes are reflected in the taste, as well - not much barrel going on here, but a top notch stout nonetheless.

 265 characters

Photo of Magbas
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

A perfect winter beer that is remarkably smooth considering the ABV. This is my winter beer, though I don't usually drink more than a few during the winter for functionality's sake.

 181 characters

Photo of SomethingClever
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%

A: Black as obsidian which is expected slight mocha head that quickly vanishes, coats the lass slightly from the alcohol

S: Nice coffee smell has the vanilla toffee slight oak smell of a nice barrel aged beer get a slight chocolate smell. It's rich aroma is very enticing .

T: a deep roast taste, rich vanilla, soft toffee, tastes of chocolate, not much heat for barrel aged but you know the alcohol is there sweet but not over powering so on the end.

M: This has the mouthfeel of what KBS should have had it's not super thick but it holds it's own and you feel it envelope your tongue.

O: This is the beer that KBS wants To be I know they use different barrels whiskey v. bourbon but The chocolate and coffee and whiskey blend together here instead of being at harsh contrasts. This is a nice beer but if you are looking for BCBCS this doesn't have the exquisite mouthfeel although leaps and bounds ahead of KBS.

 920 characters

Photo of tdm168
4.5/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to jtd1969 for sharing.

Pours a big, blackish brown with a mountain of brown head that has great retention. The nose is big and robust with an immense coffee aroma and faint chocolate. The flavor is dominated by coffee with some rich, roasted malts and underlying chocolate. There is a faint, citrusy hop finish that adds a little balance to the richness of the malts. The mouthfeel is definitely full bodied, very smooth, and well carbonated.

This was a great stout. The coffee was immense and intense, the alcohol is big and warm, the flavor was profound, but at the same time it was drinkable and smooth. It was all around enjoyable.

 645 characters

Big Bad Baptist from Epic Brewing Company
96 out of 100 based on 567 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.
  • Return of the Belgian Beer Fest

    BeerAdvocate Brings its All-Belgian Fest to Portland, Maine on September 17, 2016. Tickets are on sale now.

    Learn More
  • Get the Mag

    Become a BeerAdvocate magazine print subscriber today.

    Subscribe