Baller Stout | 3 Floyds Brewing Co.

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Baller StoutBaller Stout

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

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 13.80%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Three Floyds’ 15th Anniversary beer. A blend of Dark Lord, Surly Darkness, De Struise Black Albert, and Mikkeller Beer Geek Brunch.

Added by AleWatcher on 11-12-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 138 | Ratings: 756
Photo of TrueRates
4.9/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Very dark looking imperial stout with a mocha like head. Aromas of coffee, chocolate, slight licorice, and burnt malt. Full bodied flavor with a brilliant hop character to the beer. Extremely well balanced. Hides it's alcohol well. I think I like this more than Dark Lord. Just overall a balanced imperial stout.

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Photo of PHBoiler
4.88/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Deep, jet black color with a slight brown/almost purplish head. There is some roast, chocolate, and even some hops on the nose with a grassiness almost piney scent. Lots going on in the scent as well as the taste. You get a bit of the hops up front which was amazing given the age on the beer. There are deep roasty flavors of coffee, along with chocolate sweetness, and dark fruits. Limited smokiness which is nice. A definite special occasion beer but the booze is hidden well. It would stand up to a bold cigar. I wish I had more of this one. It was a pleasure.

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Photo of GuyFawkes
4.87/5  rDev +20%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2011 vintage; drank 5/20/14 @ Yuss Haus.

Poured from the bottle into a glass.

Black hue.

Dark tan head; minimal lace.

Dark cherry & candle wax nose.

Thick mouthfeel.

Dark cherry, fresh earth & bakers chocolate flavors, melded perfectly. A masterpiece of dark flavors; complex & delicious.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.77/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

So thrilled to crack this one open, After a crappy start to the week, god knows I needed it.

deep and dark as always. Black as night without a drop of light coming through at all. Big, thick, like oil with a huge head of chocolate that reached up an inch and a half before settling back down to earth but not without leaving a ton of lacing up and down the sides of the glass. Aroma is huge, chocolate, coffee and rich roasted malts all become evident right from the start. Incredibly deep and complex it is almost beyond description. Warming brings out light touches of vanilla and hints of dark smoked notes. Thick, viscous feel, one of the bigger stouts you will find as it coats the inside of the mouth completely and at times you feel you can chew it. Rich chocolate and a boozy flavor are the first to hit the tongue, allowing it to mellow brings out the coffee and vanilla flavors that dominate the profile for the next few minutes. Letting it come up brings licorice root and a touch of hops in the finish that provide just the slightest bit of balance to the roasted malts and molasses flavor. Incredible sipper

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Photo of beerhan
4.75/5  rDev +17%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap at FFF XV party.

A-super thick and syrupy. Black as night with a dark brown head

S-smells very chocolatey with hints of caramel and espresso. There are also hints of dark fruit probably from the dark lord.

T-the taste of this bad boy blows all of the base beers away. This behemoth is one of the tastiest things I have ever had. It has the thickness of dark lord with the coffee abd dark fruits, mostly plum and raisin shining through. A little smokiness from darkness with a strong espresso taste from the brunch weasel. I do not know how but somehow this combo was phenomenal.

M-mild carb ok nation, super smooth, alcohol is hardly noticeable.

O-great beer that I was very skeptical of but it delivered. Seek it out as I have never such a strong beer quite as smooth abd still delicious as this.

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Photo of tjshippen
4.72/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A Dark black with very thin layer of a dark tan head

S Rich coffee and chocolate smell with a hint of aromatic hops

T three stages of taste starting with a darkness style hoppiness directly followed by a bold rich fruit and coffee finishing with an oaky aged finish

M looks heavier than it sits in ones mouth very liquidy and thin

O Great beer extremely well balanced high abv beer. Must try if you can get your hands on it

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Photo of jsulko
4.69/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Bottle poured into a snifter glass

Bottle was purchased at the brewpud at the one year mark. I have had it since then.

Beer pours a very dark black with a thick chocolate colored head that faded somewhat quickly.

Smell is sweet with slight coffee and chocolate smells. Roastyness also in there.

Taste is coffee with a chocolate sweetness hidden in there. Slight alcohol presence in the finish. Hoppy bitterness also comes peaking through a bit on the back end.

A powerhouse stout that has appeared to age well. Would be interesting to try all the base beers but this one has come up a winnter for me.

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Photo of HosP
4.6/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Had several glasses of this on tap at the anniversary party.

Pours jet black just as you would imagine this beer to look. Dark khaki head that leaves a nice coat of residual lace on the glass. Wasn't as much to the nose as I would have imagined. Some chocolate and coffee notes throughout. A little bit of hop aroma mixed in the background.

The taste made up for the lack of nose though. Taste was on the sweeter side up front. Had roasted coffee, chocolate flavors mostly throughout. Like the nose, some bitterness at the end. Very slight bitter chocolate flavor to end the beer. Throughout the beer background had some dark fruit flavors. Full body with a little more carbonation than would have liked. Not to thick, maybe a little thinner than dark lord.

Very easy to drink beer, one the easiest I've had. Very smooth with the flavors blending very well. Did this live up to the hype? I think it does! I haven't drank as many high rated beers as others, but easily one of the best beers I've had.

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Photo of NewGlarusFan
4.6/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into sifter,

A) Dark, black, used motor oil thickness, One finger head that is milk chocolate in color and leaves no lacing. No light can shine through.

S) Chocolate, dried fig, vanilla, oak, cherry, mocha

T) Chocolate milk, vanilla, coconut, earth, malt balls, very good

M) Thick very small amount of carbonation

O) after aging for two years the flavor complexion has improved and is very very good.

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Photo of ChiHophead13
4.57/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had both on tap at the brewpub and from a bomber bottle while in line for the FFF XV anniversary party.

A - jet black with a thin mocha head. A lot of thick lacing and solid retention which you would expect from the collaborating inputs.

S - huge rich notes of chocolate, caramel and bread. Coffee on the nose quickly gives way to more prominent and lingering tones of black licorice and peaty/mossy hops.

T - explosion of bitter chocolate, dark fruit, and espresso on the tongue. A little boozy but not unbalanced, just big. Dark cherry and oak give it balance and sweeten up the presence of the alcohol.

M - surprisingly thin, I was anticipating this beer to be very viscous given the Darkness and Dark Lord inputs. I wanted it to be a little richer.

0 - overall it's hard to criticize this beer. I'm not sure the sum of its parts is noticeably better than DL, Darkness, or Beer Geek Brunch are on their own but this is an exceptional RIS. I can't wait to open another bottle next Thanksgiving.

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Photo of mhksuccess
4.56/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pour from a 22oz bottle into a snifter glass
very dark little head but not totally nothing i would say just light head
i love the label on the bottle
smell is boozy and sweet
taste i get chocolate, coffee, malty, cocoa
very smooth for such high abv
i little bit sweet probably due to the dark lord
heard other say it is hoppy from the darkness but i did not get this at all
overall an excellent brew i would definitely drink again

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Photo of Adamostella
4.55/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The silkiness of darkness mated with the oomph of Dark lord.

Jet black, very little head. Like looking into the abyss (no pun indentded)

It is like a metamorphosis with every sip.

Hoppy, yet wearing a velvet glove. This was a real treat.

As they say "too many chefs" however this libation is the exception to the rule, if you can get your hands on it!

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Photo of Chaney
4.53/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a FFF glass.

A: Have you ever stared at Dark Lord, Darkness, Brunch Weasel, or Black Albert? Enough said.

S: Smelled like Count Chocula cereal, very bright, no roast, lots of sugar... gotta love it!!

T: I got some Dark Lord in there for sure: Sure infused, Darkness was second in this symphony, but as for the other two... the jury is definitely out. No coffee... no roast... Straight up sugary stout.

M: Sweet, for sure, awesomely thick, but NOT a what to my mind. Great lacing, which was slippery... and wet. (insert Bon Jovi joke)

O: Great stuff. I finally decided to try this on solo in fall 2013. It was tough to walk past this in my cellar for so long. Glad it's finally killed.

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Photo of Donerik
4.5/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I got a full sized glass of this at 3F anniversary. Sampled from my eligant plastic cup over about an hour.

A: Perfect, black with a nice head. It's amazing what force carbonation does to a stout. It looked right. A nice thick black beer with a brown hed that melts into a brown cap, then a brown ring. So thick it coats the glass.

S: Rich, Malty, Goodness. I'd say the scent was richer than roasty. the beer is sweet although not cloying and that comes through in the aroma

T: Good, not a let down my any stretch, it combined what I liked about each beer that went into it without being too cloying, or too hoppy, or having too much coffee. I think this will be a 5.0 with some age. I have 3 bottles so we'll see.

M: Silky, sticky, but not cloying. Some RIS (darklord) are absolutly thick, some RIS are too thin. This was just right.

O: Greater than the sum of it's parts. I like all of the beers but they take some love to love them. Darkness is a bit too hoppy when it's young that mellows into an extraordinary beer, Darklord is supremely thick, I love about 4 oz of it...comes in 22 oz bottles...BGB is a classic mikkeller beer, a touch off, hard to quantify. This beer beats them all, one of a kind.

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Photo of drgarage
4.5/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A straight 4.5 across the board for me. Enjoyed a bottle I got in trade over New Year's Eve.

This is a very big blended imperial stout, but it's shockingly smooth. To me, that is the single-most impressive thing about it. All the components are well-integrated, and it has no noticeable alcohol heat whatsoever, a serious accomplishment. It tastes exactly like you would hope a great RIS to: big chocolate, a little booziness, good vanilla and roastiness.

Really excellent overall, but it was completely put to shame by the Black Tuesday we opened next.

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Photo of JohnnyHopps
4.47/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Dark Lord Day 2015. Hooray!

Appearance - The beer was a deep black color with bubbles crown the sides of the glass.

Smell - The malts in the aroma are intimidating with chocolate and booze hitting the nose.

Taste - My initial impression is chocolate and marshmallow. There is a definite smoke presence that is supported by molasses. Burnt malts and sugar come through in the finish.

Mouthfeel - This is definitely a top 10 stout in terms of thickness. I am not sure if it would spill if I held it upside down.

Overall - Having this beer on tap made standing in the rain on Dark Lord Day 2015 worth it.

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Photo of Houser
4.46/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pour is dark. like, i cant see the letters on my glass dark. i love when stouts are this black. head is brownish, but there is little to none. smells like dark fruits, raisins, plums, etc. taste is much the same, but this is smooth. really smooth, as in it went down way too fast. big thanks to the swtfyw fibs even though the pac beat your asses.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.45/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

An insane amount of complexity results from the blend of four world class Imperial Stouts. Dark Lord, Darkness, Beer Geek Brunch, and Black Albert are all represented with varying flavors that span every inch of the Stout spectrum.

Thick and lush, the ink-black ale layers in the glass with slow separation of low-lying carbonation from the oily textured beer beneath. A dense, moussey and short-statured head builds upon the beer like barley-stained whipped cream before reducing to a delicate espresso-like creme that sheets the surface evenly and allowing for spotted and intricate patterns of lace behind. It certainly looks like a Stout.

Savory aromas of chocolate, dark roasted coffee, caramel, vanilla, heavy whipping cream, licorice, and charred fruits all share the stage in a very inviting aroma profile that screams succulence. Assertive grassy aromas almost give off a slim chlorophenol (grassy) aroma that serves as much as a distraction as it does complexity. Delicate vinous notes of sherry and port also present themselves in varying returns to the glass.

Delicious malt flavors swirl about with the very first sip- espresso, bittersweet chocolate, walnuts, molasses, brown sugar, vanilla, and starchy malt taste are all well represented with even the very first sip. A follow of charred berries, grapes, currants rise at mid palate and usher in the anise and alcohol flavors that remind me of Jagermeister. Further into the complex fruit flavor emit the characteristics of brandy, sherry, and port wines as the alcohol envelope develops the beer's grassy bitterness, wood-like tannin, and slight vinous tartness.

Absolute fullness exudes as the beer's low carbonation allows for an even and velvety coat of rich ale to flow over the mouth surfaces. But as the robust beer develops over the tongue and palate, the beers velvety texture allows for a somewhat milky feel to soothe the mouth, just before turning aggressively alcoholic with high levels of warmth and mild fusal burn in finish. A long linger of booze, coffeeish bitterness, and wine reach well into the next sip.

Three Floyd's 15th Anniversary ale is one helluva sipper- not only from the strength of its alcohol, nor it's heavy body but because of its sheer complexity that both challenge and encourage the palate at every turn. A true delight of a beer!

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Photo of Treyliff
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle, poured into a snifter

A- pours nearly pitch black with a small creamy khaki colored head that retains long after the pour, leaving some nice lace behind

S- dark chocolate malt with a hint of coffee up front, dark cherry and sherry, smoky malt, slightly charred, hints of fig & raisin

T- quite sweet up front with big notes of chocolate and smoky malt, big flavors of dark cherry juice & molasses, slight oxidization gives flavors of sherry, fig and raisin on a sweet vanilla cream finish, light coffee linger with peppery notes

M- medium-heavy body with low carbonation leads to a rich and creamy mouthfeel that continues into a velvety finish, slight alcohol warmth on the linger

O- a wonderful blend of four already world class beers that has aged nicely over the last few years

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Photo of sleuthdog
4.43/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into FFF teku

Pour: Huge intense black with a khaki two finger head that hung around for a while. After receding to a thick collar, there was a ton of lacing all over the glass. It did not pour out as thick as I was anticipating it would. Alcohol legs of course are visible.

Smell: Roasted goodness all over the place with a bakers chocolate note. Sweetness is evident here in the form of burnt sugar. Some oak and vanilla round out the aroma.

Taste: Well I can say I can tell it is in fact a blend of 4 beers because it does not seem to be integrated well. It is layer upon layer of complexity but yet not blended to hide the base beers into one. Sweetness, molasses is at the front then coffee, roast, chocolate. It ends in an overall bitter finish. Alcohol is evident in a mild burn but not distracting in any way and actually adds to the enjoyment for me.

Mouthfeel: Not the huge thick monster I was expecting but it is the far end of medium to full. Light carbonation and finishes sticky sweet.

Overall: I had high hopes for this beer and I did enjoy the hell out of it's complexity. It is not blended well, IMO but to me this ends up being ok. Not as crazy good as I was hoping but I am enjoying sipping on this one for sure!

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Photo of Dad_of_Rad
4.43/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap DLD 2015

A: Dark Brown with more carbonation than I expected for this big of a beer.
S: Roasted malt, chocolate, some booze.
T: Decadent - chocolate, coffee, caramel, not sweet at all, very smooth
M: Luscious, silky, so good
O: So fortunate to have seen this taking a walk to the porta potty. 2nd time having it, 1st time on tap. Excellent flavor and mouthfeel.

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Photo of mynie
4.43/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I drank this at the fest, fresh from the tap. My pallet was fresh, my brain unfried, and I swear I wasn't all that much looking forward to sampling this particular beer--my sights were set on the Mikkeller tent. What I'm trying to say is, I gave it a perfect 5 in good faith, not because of any impediment. I stick by that review.

But, finally sampling the bottled version, I realize I can't let that 5 stand all alone. Because, bottled, it's not perfect. It's still really good. But it's far from perfect.

Still a wonderful, opaque pour. Still a nice blend of Darkness hops and Dark Lord vinousness. But the coffee nodes are much more present, which makes it more of a strange--and not entirely well-balanced--melange of flavors than it is a wonderful take on Darkness. The Surly hops aren't as present, the back end is a little thin, and while it's still totally worth drinking it just don't come together as well as it did on tap.

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Photo of Casedogg43
4.41/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What a collab and blend this is. Had it on tap at XV and a few bottles since the event.

Appearance is typical of a nice stout

Smell: chocolate, coffee and some fruits too. Intereting and someone captivating smell. Makes we look forward to opening another bottle to visit the aroma again.

Taste: I LOVE it. espresso, coffee, Chocolate and malt. Mix in some fruits mid way though with a hint of alcohol to swirl. It has a palate full! I am a big fan of the port wine taste that finishes.

Mouthfeel: Full to say the least. smooth and warming.

Overall: I really enjoy this beer. I picked up more at DLD and an trying my best to have 1 per month!
This is a complex stout, and I'm not sure I have it figured out yet. Matter of fact, no way do I. And I can't wait to give it another try!

What a BEER!!!

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Photo of facundoCNB
4.41/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

wow - this is probably the best looking stout i've poured at home. a thick black/dark brown pour, 2 fingers of brown color head, great retention, tons of lacing left behind.
smells of roasted grains, coffee beans, vanilla, cocoa, dirt, brown sugar.
the flavor is all over the place!!! starts off mellow cocoa, slight roasted, then JUMPS to DARK ROAST, bourbon, oak, soy sauce, molasses, and has subtle roasted bitterness (the alcohol makes itself known mid-palate. i really think this beer could have been better if they didn't throw dark lord in there.. it's only character that shows up in here is its worst one - that salty soy sauce flavor. yuck. but, aside from that - this beer is fantastic. i don't understand all the shit reviews, probably just people "tired of the hype". i can't complain - i got this in my very first trade 2 years ago.. traded this and some other excellent beers for off the shelf stuff to someone looking to clean out their cellar. i lucked out. is this beer worth seeking out? probably. i wouldn't trade anything ridiculous for it, but it's a fantastic beer and people should cut the bullshit and just enjoy it for what it is - a ridiculous blend of stouts.

the obvious mouthfeel - full body, low carbonation. thick, sticky, creamy, chalky.

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Photo of Rhettroactive
4.4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

From 22oz yellow wax dipped bottle to snifter on 2/4/12
*From notes

A: Dark and brooding. A good pour yields a 1.5 finger head that's like chocolate whipping cream. Decent retention, collar and mild lacing.

S: The nose features hints of grassy chocolate. There's also a pretty hefty amount of floral hops which mingle quite well with the earth tone that arrives as it warms.

T: For a non-barrel aged stout, this thing is ballin' (pardon the pun). Dark and charry up front. The mid is aggressively hoppy, with a juicy bite to it not often found in an RIS like this. The finish is packed with flourless chocolate cake and freshly brewed coffee. As it lingers in my mouth, there's a touch of residual sweetness that I credit to the DL. Lovely integration - the blending here is top notch.

M: Unreal. This is one of the creamiest beers I've had in a while. It's extremely thick, almost milshake-like. Wonderful stuff.

O: I went in expecting to be dissapointed by the hype train that is Baller Stout. So you can imagine my delight when this drank like a million bucks. All four of the beers are represented here, and it makes for an interesting and memorable drinking experience. I'm glad I've got another in the cellar. Big thumbs up.

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Baller Stout from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
4.06 out of 5 based on 756 ratings.
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