Vanilla Bean Assassin
Toppling Goliath Brewing Company

Vanilla Bean AssassinVanilla Bean Assassin
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Toppling Goliath Brewing Company
Iowa, United States
Stout - American Imperial
Ranked #2
Ranked #4
4.8 | pDev: 5.42%
Yesterday at 12:32 AM
Feb 23, 2014
Vanilla Bean AssassinVanilla Bean Assassin
Notes: Imperial stout aged in whiskey barrels and conditioned on vanilla beans.
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Photo of dboon
4.45/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75
by dboon from Florida

Bottle, graciously shared by Clark at Peg’s. Dark brown pour with a light brown head. Inviting vanilla bean and coco puff aromas. Sweet with delicious vanilla, rich caramel, decadent chocolate, and woody notes. Some heat from the whiskey, but not overwhelming. More of a backbeat really. Doesn’t drink like a 12%er. Smooth, but complex with a very good mouthfeel and body. Bravo......

May 15, 2022
4.35 by GeorgeAKeim from Oregon on May 10, 2022
4.99 by Affinity from Missouri on Apr 29, 2022
5 by dan_amdg from Illinois on Apr 03, 2022
4.59 by KT123 from Pennsylvania on Feb 27, 2022
5 by Narthax from Texas on Feb 22, 2022
4.63 by JesseLara from California on Jan 28, 2022
Photo of SadMachine
4.68/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75
by SadMachine from New Jersey

Unofficially my last beer of the top 250 (had the trade secured for it before changes were made to calculations, making me 20 short again...)

It glugs out of the bottle super thick and tar black. It has a finger and a half head of tight, thick khaki bubbles that recedes slowly to a thin film and collar that retain throughout. Leaves some nice legs on the glass when swirled.

Immediate strong aromas of boozy bourbon are softened by sweet vanilla and lightly toasted marshmallow. Fudgey brownie batter, brown sugar, molasses, caramel, toasted coconut, and charred oak all follow. There's just a hint of figs linger in the background.

The flavor is quite bourbon forward, but very round and smooth. It's like a scoop of real vanilla bean ice cream topped with burnt caramel, artisan fudge, and a shot of high end bourbon. Nothing pops much except maybe the bourbon, but this is quite well balanced.

The mouth feel is thick, but not overly so. It's slick and coats the mouth well, lingering and begging you to take another sip. Just the right amount (only a touch) of carbonation, and a bone dry, slightly boozy finish. Superb!

Overall this is an absolute pleasure of a beer to drink, and a worthy one for my "last" of the 250 list! It doesn't blow me away in the flavor department, but it does in its balance and roundedness! Those are things hard to find in modern BA adjunct stouts! The fact that I could EASILY solo dome this bottle says something!

Jan 14, 2022
4.75 by robertm2152 from Illinois on Jan 10, 2022
4.85 by MrNate from Florida on Dec 31, 2021
Photo of Hefewiseman
5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
by Hefewiseman from Florida

As far as vanilla barrel ages stouts go, it is hard to name a better one than this. Very sweet, but just short of cloying. The huge fudge notes blend perfectly with that intense vanilla marshmallow presence. Don't miss out on this one if you have a chance to get some!

Dec 13, 2021
4.75 by PhineasMcClintock from Massachusetts on Dec 12, 2021
4.81 by Eziel from Ohio on Nov 20, 2021
4.52 by kash2112 from Arizona on Nov 18, 2021
4.79 by MTKATL from Georgia on Nov 15, 2021
5 by cd34 from Illinois on Nov 10, 2021
4.9 by Appearanceswc from Virginia on Nov 09, 2021
4.46 by Benish from Wisconsin on Nov 06, 2021
5 by rarapacz from Minnesota on Oct 10, 2021
4.24 by 22Blue from Kansas on Sep 28, 2021
4.75 by rstump24 from Ohio on Sep 27, 2021
4.9 by SlightlyGrey from Minnesota on Aug 23, 2021
4.42 by BarrelAgedG from California on Aug 18, 2021
4.5 by jschott75 from Illinois on Aug 16, 2021
4.75 by rabbott2 from Illinois on Jul 06, 2021
4.63 by spersichilli from California on Jun 22, 2021
4.75 by Rkitchen from Michigan on Jun 19, 2021
4.75 by Jmalo from Ohio on Jun 17, 2021
4.61 by ivegot3Dvision from Oregon on Jun 17, 2021
4.75 by driftlessbeer from Wisconsin on May 22, 2021
Photo of Ristaccia
4.69/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
by Ristaccia from Nebraska

2019 bottle

May 10, 2021
4.75 by chippo33 from Vermont on Apr 26, 2021
4.75 by eddie5721 from Illinois on Apr 11, 2021
Photo of unclekeith
4.89/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
by unclekeith from Alaska

2019 bottle at room temp
Wax was a big of a bugger

Inky black with a small beige head, not much carbonation.
Vanilla brownie batter aroma, some heat. Bourbon secondary
Not much bitterness or roast, plenty of barrel and vanilla.
High viscosity motor oil bordering on chewy.

Apr 11, 2021
4.94 by ellswrth from Oregon on Apr 10, 2021
4.75 by ADTaber from South Carolina on Mar 26, 2021
Photo of Dicers
4.51/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5
by Dicers from Colorado

#248 of Top 250 (as of 3/11/21) thanks to Orca Whale

L: Motor oi black, small tan head

S: Deep barrel and only a bit of vanilla, which is surprising.

T: Tobacco, vanilla, decent amount of barrel. Good stout with vanilla without the vanilla over taking

F: Thick and heavy mouthfeel

O: A great, but not perfect BA Vanilla stout, happy ot have finally ticked this one.

Mar 14, 2021
4.52 by Eternal218 from California on Mar 13, 2021
5 by eawolff99 from Minnesota on Mar 13, 2021
Vanilla Bean Assassin from Toppling Goliath Brewing Company
Beer rating: 100 out of 100 with 109 ratings