Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord (Pappy Van Winkle) | 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord (Pappy Van Winkle)Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord (Pappy Van Winkle)
Liked This Beer
4.65 w/ 151 ratings
Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord (Pappy Van Winkle)Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord (Pappy Van Winkle)

Brewed by:
3 Floyds Brewing Co.
Indiana, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 15.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
The 2011 bottled vintage of Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord was aged exclusively in Pappy Van Winkle barrels. All draft and other bottle vintages (2006 swing-tops, 2012 bottles) should be reviewed here -

Added by HopHead84 on 06-25-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Ratings: 151 |  Reviews: 54
Photo of jethrodium
2.98/5  rDev -35.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bottle generously shared by ipa247. Huge thanks to Jeff for sharing this rarity. Pours a pitch black with almost no light coming through. No head. No lacing. Leaves some small legs on the glass when swirled. The aroma is bourbon, vanilla, soy sauce, plum, cherry, sugar, caramel, and a bit of oak. The taste is sweet. Really sweet. There's bourbon, vanilla, oak, soy sauce, plum, roastiness, and a bit of cherry. The finish has a decent amount of alcohol and a lingering soy sauce flavor as well as a bit of bourbon. Full bodied and viscous. Close to no carbonation. This is certainly better than the regular version of Dark Lord, but is still not a great beer. It's still cloyingly sweet and has a decent amount of unpleasant soy sauce.

 737 characters

Photo of kscaldef
3.5/5  rDev -24.7%

Photo of oregonskibum
3.75/5  rDev -19.4%

Photo of scottfrie
4/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle number 112 opened by ipa247. Thanks Jeff. Reviewed from notes.

A: Pours a very viscous black with almost no head. Sits heavy in the glass, very thick.
S: Smells a lot like DL (soy sauce, licorice, super sugary sweet) but with hints of buttery Pappy and not as much hot alcohol vapor.
T: Boozy, tastes like the nose, basically DL mellowed out by the bourbon barrel. Buttery Pappy is strong along with flavors of rich chocolate, caramel, tons of sweet sugar, licorice and a bit of soy. Finish is warming. Pappy doesn’t come through as much as Eclipse or Rare. Still sweet but the barrel mellowed it some.
M: Extremely viscous and sweet, thick bodied, thick mouth. Smooth carb, warming alcohol.
O: Just a meaty beast of a beer. Too sweet for me to love (this is still DL after all) but it’s a definite improvement on the original, and a great beer if you love Pappy (who doesn’t). Thanks Jeff.

 907 characters

Photo of Dennoman
4.02/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Incredibly generous share by Matt at Borefts Beer Festival. Was lucky enough to have the last sip in the bottle. A happy scavenger thanks you for the scraps, Matt and Thijs! Bottle 175/484, still proudly sitting on my mantlepiece now. Poured into a De Molen tasting chalice.

A: Appears slightly darker than regular Dark Lord 2011. Still, more reminiscent of a strong porter. Thick, syrupy, dark ruby red fading into black with no legs and no head.

S: Beautiful soft bourbon, dark sugar, vanilla and butterscotch smack you around the head. The booze is nowhere to be found, smells well-balanced but almost clawingly sweet.

T: Not nearly as sweet as regular Dark Lord, so that's a big tick. More balance thanks to the bourbon and oakyness.

M: Imagine drinking maple syrup with the slightest of carbonation. That would be close to this.

O: Shows great improvement over regular Dark Lord 2011, which I hated because it was so clawingly sweet. The oakiness and bourbon from the barrel cut through the syrupy base brew beautifully, but don't go thinking this beer is anywhere near balanced as a stout. The other flavors do seem to come through a little bit more thanks to the barrel aging process, which does wonders to some beers and Dark Lord is one of them. Great stuff.

 1,272 characters

Photo of emerge077
4.1/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Treebs
4.11/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ml waxed bottle, 470/484, served in a Deschutes tulip. Big thanks Dan (danielnovak3) for the share.

A: Pour like motor oil. A thin tan head forms on the pour but it recedes quickly to a thin ring. No lace is left, but big sticky legs are present.

S: Sweet, sweet pappy. I haven't smelt a pappy presence this good since Rare BCBS. Light oak with some great roasted malts. Subtle dark fruit flavors with some toasted marshmallow and semi-bitter chocolate.

T: Nice pappy bourbon up front, but it quickly gives way to some toasted marshmallow and vanilla from the barrel. Mild oak, roasted malts and light dark chocolate.

M: Chewy and viscous with a relatively low carbonation level, but it creates a nice silky and creamy mouthfeel. Very nice.

O: The pappy is a great addition to this beer, but I feel like it should have sat in the barrel longer to add just a little more depth in flavor. Not my favorite of the BA DL versions.

 934 characters

Photo of womencantsail
4.15/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to a very, very generous Jeff for sharing this at Woodshop.

A: The beer pours thick and black, not much head on it. Sort of like regular Dark Lord.

S: Lots of bourbon and vanilla with an intense sweetness that only Dark Lord can achieve. Brown sugar, molasses, chocolate, and dark fruits with a hint of nuts and maple syrup.

T: Like the nose, intensely sweet with all sorts of different sugar notes: molasses, brown sugar, toffee, caramel, and maple syrup. There's lots of chocolate, bourbon, and vanilla, too with plenty of dark fruit.

M: Thick, syrupy, and lowly carbonated.

O: The bourbon helps to take off the edge of the Dark Lord. Pretty good beer.

 666 characters

Photo of Abbbp
4.15/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

How a 4 year old + bottle can stand up to the test of time like this is beyond me. Warning, My entire tasting group though readily agreed that the barrel is exclusively carrying this beer's greatness, but that is all that is left.

I wouldn't recommend trading what it takes or paying what it costs but I am glad that I got to tick this beer. #899

 347 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
4.17/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle #268/484. Big thanks to AgentZero for contributing this one. Consumed at Sean's 30th Birthday Party Extravaganza. Served in a Three Floyds / Intelligentsia snifter.

Pours black with a thin mocha-colored head. Some legs and a few spots of lacing on the way down. Thin collar throughout. The nose brings a fairly-heavy bourbon presence, though not as much of the spirit as the Brandy version had. Oak and some light vanillin in the background plus some heavy chocolate. Really smooth integration between the base and the barrel character.

The flavor picks up much more booze than the nose did, though not too much. Good Pappy character. Rich and smooth. Somewhat creamy. Lots of brown sugar and smooth chocolate. Full body and pretty creamy with a moderate amount of booze. Low carbonation. Really enjoyable. This and the Brandy version tie for second in my book.

 870 characters

Photo of brystmar
4.17/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Whales! Thanks Jim.

Pungent bourbon in the nose, so much Pappy. The Bourbon DL '12 opened alongside simply cannot compare. I'm not a bourbon fanboy, but the Pappy is clearly superior.

Dark fruits, roasty, mildly sweet. All overshadowed by the bourbon, however, and while that's usually a fault, the Pappy somehow makes it work nicely. If you read my reviews, I rarely enjoy bourbon-forward flavor profiles as dominant as this, but it definitely works here.

Was really expecting this one to be more hype than delicious; pleasantly surprised to be wrong.

 555 characters

Photo of Sean9689
4.17/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle #266/484 (I think) generously shared by AgentZero at my 30th Birthday Party Extravaganza. Poured into a taster.

A - Looks like Dark Lord. Black, tan mocha-colored head, thin collar, some whisps on top.

S - Bourbon, oak, chocolate, burnt sugars, brownies. The Pappy is there for sure, very smooth and not overly done. The base beer works well with the oak and booze notes. I think it's an understatement that Pappy works well with a good base stout.

T - The booze is more apparent here then any of the other BA variants. Nice chocolate, molasses, bourbon, oak, and burnt sugars. Bourbon and Dark Lord go well together, who woulda thunk? Very enjoyable, perhaps a bit syrupy and slightly hot.

M - Full, rich, creamy, very slight carbonation.

O - PVW + DL is good, can you believe it? Perhaps not as good as I thought because I hyped myself up for this beer, but very enjoyable. The booze is slightly hot but not 15% hot. Another winner from the BA Dark Lord variants. Recommend.

 989 characters

Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.2/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I brought this one. Side-by-side with all the other BA Dark Lords. Bottle 49/484 into a snifter. From notes.

Appearance is same as the others. Not much to see but big, bad-ass legs.

The aroma of Pappy is unmistakable here. Super bourbon forward mixed with hints of fig, plum, prune, chocolate, molasses. Sharp but balanced. Very aromatic.

Sweet chocolate, plum, fudge, molasses, sweet soy sauce, and big bourbon notes smooth this one over. Sweet, chocolate and syrup finish. Tasty!

Same feel as the others. Surprisingly, this one isn't too harsh going down considering the overall nose and taste.

Definitely one of the better Pappy beers out there as it displays the barrel aging impressively without covering the subtleties of the other flavors.

 751 characters

Photo of SpdKilz
4.25/5  rDev -8.6%

Photo of pperez38
4.25/5  rDev -8.6%

Photo of AleWatcher
4.25/5  rDev -8.6%

Photo of stxSS07
4.25/5  rDev -8.6%

Photo of klipper
4.25/5  rDev -8.6%

Photo of jrae2424
4.25/5  rDev -8.6%

Photo of CityofBals
4.25/5  rDev -8.6%

Photo of t0rin0
4.25/5  rDev -8.6%

Photo of readbaron
4.25/5  rDev -8.6%

Photo of HopHead84
4.27/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


Tried this next to all four barrel aged versions and the 2010 regular version. I enjoyed it a lot more this time so I'm upping my score. +.5 to Mouthfeel and Overall.


Big thanks to Jason. Tried after Bourbon County Rare. The bottle number rubbed off.

A: Glugs out like motor oil. Very dark brown with a few bubbles.

S: Chocolate brown sugar cookie with light vanilla and powerful bourbon. A lot of fusel in the nose. Light oxidation and some molasses. Very nice.

T: Dark chocolate with brown sugar and oak. Bourbon accompanies a formidable alcohol presence. Very sweet, a little too sweet after trying the rare. Finishes syrupy with booze, molasses, bourbon, and chocolate. Faint dark fruit presence.

M: Full in body with very low carbonation. Mouthfeel is syrupy and sticky.

Overall: Good, but not as refined as Goose Island Rare or many other barrel aged stouts for that matter. At the heart of it we still have Dark Lord, a bit too much Dark Lord, and the Pappy barrel can only do so much apparently. Still, an enjoyable beer and a pleasure to try.

 1,079 characters

Photo of WTKeene
4.27/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of jale
4.3/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Mike(Agentzero) for this.

A: Pours black with little head.

S: Bourbon, chocolate, oak and dark sugar.

T: Bourbon upfront followed by sweet chocolate, oak and a hint of vanilla. Slightly more alcohol heat then the others but still not what you expect from this much ABV

M: Thick body.

O: Such a great beer. Would love more.

 341 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord (Pappy Van Winkle) from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 98.7% out of 100 with 151 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.