Cognac Barrel Aged Dark Lord
3 Floyds Brewing Co.

Cognac Barrel Aged Dark LordCognac Barrel Aged Dark Lord
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Russian Imperial Stout
4.46 | pDev: 8.74%
3 Floyds Brewing Co.
Indiana, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Cognac Barrel Aged Dark LordCognac Barrel Aged Dark Lord
Reviews: 23 | Ratings: 125 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Huhzubendah
4.5/5  rDev +0.9%

The beer is pitch black with a thin beige cap. The aroma brings rich, roasted malt, chocolate, oak, booze, and cognac notes. Sweet cognac flavor goes beautifully with the huge imperial stout. I've yet to meet a cognac barrel-aged beer I didn't enjoy. This is no exception. Absolutely terrific stuff.

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Huhzubendah from District of Columbia, Aug 09, 2014
Photo of jeonseh
4.13/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

S - Chocolate, caramel, and a load of sweet cognac presence that gives it both sweetness and a slight alcohol presence

T - Chocolate, syrupy sweetness, and caramel give it a ton of sweetness; yet it doesn't get up to being too sweet as there is a slight alcohol presence that balances it out.

M- Thick syrupy body with a slight chalky chocolate presence to it as well as some light surgery sweetness 4.

O - This is a pretty sweet DL Variant as the alcohol has seemed to fade and left this as a sweet Cognac stout.

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jeonseh from Indiana, Jan 29, 2014
Photo of jegross2
3.71/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Reviewing the Cognac Dark Lord from Three Floyds Brewing Company out of Munster, Indiana.

Score: 87

April 2012 vintage bottle served in a Dark Lord snifter and enjoyed on 03/12/14. Bottle number 478 out of 534. Thank you Husker Mike for graciously losing this bottle to me in a post-season baseball wager (go Rays!).

Appearance: Pours an ink black color with a thin layer of tan head that quickly settles to a ring around the glass. Good lacing, excellent retention. Oily legs. 4.75/5

Smell: A ton of maple syrup! Then tiramisu, vanilla, raisin, oak and chocolate. Cognac too, but the nose does not scream cognac like Bourbon Barrel Aged Dark Lord screamed bourbon. The cognac character is a lot more forward than complementary here. As it warms up, the maple falls off. 4.25/5

Taste: Has a cognac flavor and maple flavor upfront that kind of tastes like a muted Utopias, finishing nice and long. Notes of chocolate, raisin and oak too. Light licorice as well. Sadly, as this beer warms up, the maple/molasses character fades out and it develops a vegetal/pepper finish. Wah-wah. 3.25/5

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus bodied, minimal carbonation. Slick, slightly sticky mouthfeel with a dry finish. Has a very mild sweetness. Frankly, this might be the least sweet variation of Dark Lord that I have had to date. 4/5

Overall: Although my initial impression of this beer was pretty positive, its quality nose dived as it warmed up and aerated. While this beer is not nearly as bad as Cognac Barrel Aged Dark Lord De Muerte, the 2011 batch of Dark Lord De Muerte, Moscatel Barrel Aged Dark Lord or Port Barrel Aged Dark Lord, it is far from being an elite beer let alone a top five Barrel Aged Dark Lord variant. My 5 oz pour was sufficient for a lifetime.

Cost: $50 for a 750 ml bottle.

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jegross2 from Illinois, Oct 15, 2013
Photo of Jeffo
3.94/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to a few people we were able to put together the entire vertical and almost all the BA variants. Lots of fun gents!

From a 750 into a snifter
2012 vintage
Bottle 409 of 534

APPEARANCE: Just like all the rest of them. Pours relatively clear for an imperial stout. Produces a small, one finger medium-looking head that quickly fades to a wisp and ring. Black body in the glass with some carbonation evident. Only a ring remains until the end and leaves no real lacing down the glass. A little too light a pour and an average head at best.

SMELL: NIce barrel notes on this one. Cognac, oak notes with some nice milk chocolate and a hint of alcohol. Light caramel and molasses perhaps, but the cognac barrel is nice and well executed.

TASTE: More nice cognac up front with oak, milk chocolate and some alcohol at the swallow. A big and lingering finish is boozy with nice barrel flavors, some wood notes, milk and bitter, dark chocolate and some caramel sweetness. Pretty nice, and the cognac barrel is really well integrated into the base beer. Well balanced and enjoyable for sure.

PALATE: Slightly lighter than the base beer, but still big enough. Just like the other DL variants as well. Medium body with medium levels of carbonation. Creamy enough, goes down fine and finishes rather sticky on the palate. A bit of a burn and some heat lingers.

OVERALL: Really good stuff here. Behind the two bourbon versions, this was easily the one I enjoyed above the others. The cognac barrel is there in just the right amount and the more palatable parts of Dark Lord are allowed to come through. Enjoyable and well worth checking out. Cheers!

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Jeffo from Netherlands, May 15, 2013
Photo of standardcherry
4.59/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bottle 495/534. Split with a friend into snifters.

A: Thick, jet black pour. Thin beige colored head that receded immediately.
S: Cognac, dark fruits, dark chocolate. Nice roasty smell too.
T: Same as the smell, cognac, dark fruits, chocolate. There is a slight metallic aftertaste, I don't know it that comes from the cognac because I have never felt anything similar in bourbon barrel beers. The metallic taste is not off-putting though, it's just something I noticed in the aftertaste.
M: Medium/full body with light carbonation. Thinner than I expected, but this just made it go down easier.
O: Excellent beer, even though I am not a fan of cognac it blends very well with the Dark Lord and creates a surprisingly drinkable, smooth beer.

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standardcherry from Massachusetts, Jan 28, 2013
Photo of oregonskibum
3.98/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a large snifter glass. Tasted early in the night, although review from memory.
A-inky black with just a faint tan ring of bubbles on tap, hardly enough to call it a head. Thick, coats the side if the glass
S-chocolate, dark fruits, raisin, prune. I'm not that familiar with cognac, but there is a strong liquor aroma I attribute to the cognac. Interesting.
T-pretty much follows smell, although a heavy sweetness starts to dominate. Vanilla, toffee and more dark fruit. A little on the boozy side.
M-thick, viscous, tiring. The sweetness and sryupy nature of this beer quickly produces palette fatigue
O-disappointing. I had the brandy vanilla BA DL last year and was blown away. The cognac BA DL was good, don't get me wrong. But it wasn't blow your mind good. And its so big, over the top sweet that the aroma / taste isn't good enough for me to want more than a small pour. Personally, track down a cigar city cognac imp milk stout. Almost as good with far less hype.

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

Bottle 308 of 534

A - pours black with a chocolaty head on it

S - cognac spiciness mixed in with some chocolate make up the profile of the nose

T - sweet cognac mixed in with soy and fudgy chocolates open this beer up. A little bit of dark fruits move in next to add a nice change of complexity to the beer. The cognac spiciness comes back at the end and wraps up the taste profile.

M - smooth and full...nice

D - nice barrel variant in the Dark Lord series. Recommended if you can get your hands on it, but if not I wouldn't loose sleep over it.[email protected]/8159864035/in/photostream

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birchstick from Colorado, Nov 06, 2012
Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.42/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thakns to Chris for sharing this one. 2012 Vintage.

A - Dark black with a thin layer of mocha coloured head.

S - Cognac, dark fruit and chocolate covered cherries provide an interesting nose along with the typical big sweet roast profile of Dark Lord.

T - Cognac, chocolate fudge, dark cherries, char and roast. Fairly sweet overall with some molasses and chocolate notes coming through. The sweet and warming cognac profile returns in the finish. The barrel aging seemed to really tame the massive sweetness that the base beer typically exudes. Good integration of all of the various flavours.

M - Medium to full body. Light carbonation. A little thin for what I expected but still a nice mouth feel.

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TheSevenDuffs from Ontario (Canada), Oct 12, 2012
Photo of sweemzander
4/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750mL waxed and capped bottle. Major thanks to Matt for sharing! Bottle # 114/534.

(A)- Pours pitch as black night. Some tan and brown bubbles formed.

(S)- Mountains of booze soaked raisin, caramel, dark fruits, and a sweet oak component.

(T)- Again, heavy on the raisin with a subtle spicy nutmeg and vanilla oak combination.

(M)- I like the mellow carbonation in this in combination with the spicy oak wood and the mountains of raisin this has. Rich & dense as hell, but then again this IS Dark Lord.

(O)- Dark Lord is always a beast, but I quite like this variant on it. Barrel aging seems to smooth it out a little and adds a nice subtle spicy wood component that really drove it home.

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sweemzander from Illinois, Sep 27, 2012
Photo of illidurit
4/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle shared at RBSG 2012 Grand Tasting. Black with brownish head. Aroma and flavor are a little subdued compared to the other versions. Lots of chocolate and roast and caramel but a bit of a fruity tinge as well. Body is a little bit too thin, flavors are a little mild. Definitely a couple steps below the other Dark Lord variants that night.

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illidurit from California, Aug 16, 2012
Photo of cosmicevan
4.2/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Consumed on 7/28 as part of the NYC BA DarkLord Voltron tasting!!! thanks to mjmadsen21 for the trade and helping me get a seat at this stellar tasting event!
bottle #389 / 534

a - black with minimal off brown tan head. soft of what i was expecting for a barrel aged dark lord.

s - pretty boozy and a bit metallic. cognac is definitely present on the nose.

t - metallish aluminum on dark lord. cognac and booze, but there is definite metal in there. the cognac comes on more as it warms and compliments the beer really nice. i'm not a huge cognac fan, but this beer is pretty tasty.

m - smooth and easy drinker. the metallic taste is present but not too much and goes away over time as i adjust to the feel...could be related to the cognac flavor mixing with the dark lord?

o - very good, but i had a hard time getting past the metallic undertones in the beer. as not a huge cognac fan i didn't feel that the presence of cognac was a big improvement on the beer. the group was definitely divided on this one as some really felt that this was a highlight for the tasting and for me it was probably more in the middle to the lower middle for the veritcal.

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cosmicevan from New York, Aug 05, 2012
Photo of womencantsail
3.68/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks, Tim!

Black in color with almost no head or carbonation. Intense brandy and alcohol aroma along with tons of chocolate and sugar. The booziness is just a bit too pronounced for me. Sweet maple syrup, sugar, caramel, toffee, etc. all present. Good vanilla, brandy, and booze flavors here, too. Maybe a touch of fruit. The booze isn’t quite as over the top as on the nose.

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womencantsail from California, Aug 04, 2012
Photo of SpeedwayJim
3.91/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Evan for this one. Side-by-side with all the other BA Dark Lords. Bottle 389/534 into a snifter. From notes.

Just like the other variations with a touch more lace. No head, black. Oily legs.

Chocolate, fudge, some tingly boozy spiciness, ethanol. Sweet. Mellow.

Big dark fruit notes. Chinese medicine, prune, plum, some light tartness, alcohol spiciness, sweet, syrupy molasses finish.

Mouthfeel is exactly like the other variations.

A solid beer overall. The cognac gives the dark lord a nice, different characters that's much appreciated.

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SpeedwayJim from New York, Jul 29, 2012
Photo of Tipsy
4.9/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Served from bottle with standard pressure cap and poured into a beer snifter. My expectations were high being form 3 Floyd's and a new and exotic barrel aged style beer using the Cognac barrel. This beer delivers and the hype needs to grow.

A: Pours really dark black color beautiful head of great cream, fantastic thickness, and a impressive retention.

S: Rich with caramel, toffee and of course the cognac. What a rich and just unbelievable smell with the ingredient combinations.

T: Again, rich with caramel, toffee and of course the cognac. The flavors combine so nicely to give this beer an superb taste that is strong smooth and good far sipping through an evening. Wow. I mean just wow. This is unlike any bourbon barrel aged beer I've had and the cognac does something very special to the flavor. You have to try this. Very complex and subtle.

M: Smooth and wet. Rich. Creamy up front but the cream bleeds through to the end.

Overall: Just get this beer and experience something you have never experienced before. It is awesome and this one delivers.

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Photo of LuvDaHops
5/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow. Strong, sweet an delicious. I've never had anything like it, but I want more. The aroma is unique, but pleasant. Pours a rich black with little to no head. The best thing about this beer is the taste, which the cognac enhanced unlike any bourbon barrel aged beer I have had.

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Photo of LikeTheBeer
5/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is an impressive beer that pours black with a nice little brown head. You can taste the delicious barrel aging in this strong and beautiful beer. If you like a strong, complex and wonderfully flavored beer this is one you must get.

You can taste cognac, caramel, chocolate, sugar and toffee.

Thanks to Mike from Indiana who sold this to me, I wish there were more out there to buy.

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Photo of Dejan
5/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Pours motor oil black, stains the glass with a brown film, thin mocha head.

S - Chocolate, caramel, oak, and a strong, smooth congnac. The nose is very sweet, the the booze helps balance things out pretty well. Very well executed.

T - Cognac, caramel, chocolate, sugar and another sweet maybe a toffee. Sweet and smooth with a grea cognac taste which is different than any other barrel aged I've had. Amazing.

M - Rich, Full Bodied, Creamy and Smooth

O - This is an impressive beer that will definitely give pleasure to any beer enthusiast. I can see how some may not like the Cognac flavor and that's because they may not like Cognac!!! If you like beer infused with an alcohol, you will love this beer.

Serving type: bottle

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Dejan from Michigan, Jul 11, 2012
Photo of HopHead84
3.78/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5


Thanks! Bottle 317/534.

A: Black with a finger of beige foam.

S: Milk chocolate bar with brown sugar dumped on it and some vanilla. It's slightly smoky and meaty, reminiscent of beef jerky, which isn't an overly positive attribute. The cognac presence is light.

T: Incredibly sweet. Lots of vanilla and cocoa. Pronounced brown sugar with evident cognac imparting restrained grape and plum notes. Fudge blends with molasses. Boozy sweet finish. Thankfully that meaty note from the aroma isn't present in the flavor.

M: Full body with low carbonation. Big thick mouthfeel with evident warming.

Overall: Solid but not too impressive. We tried this next to Bourbon Vanilla, Vanilla Bean, and Cognac Muerte, and I enjoyed this least of all.

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HopHead84 from California, Jun 18, 2012
Photo of MasterSki
4.08/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Mike (AgentZero) for sharing this one. Served in a taster glass at my birthday party.

A - Tan foam settles to a thick collar and near-complete cap, but minimal lace. Oily and viscous black body with a glint of brown at the edges of the glass.

S - The cognac imparts boozy sweetness to an already sweet and boozy beer. Lots of grape spirit presence amid the dark fruit, caramel burnt sugars, and chocolate you normally find in Dark Lord. Not much overt oak - just some mild vanilla sweetness.

T - Again, it's very sweet although it seems to avoid the cloying character of this year's Dark Lord. Lots of sugars, molasses, caramel, and cognac - extremely decadent. Not much roast character, and not much alcohol presence either. Probably more of a 4.25, but not quite good enough to warrant an A rating.

M - Low carbonation, sticky, viscous and clingy full body, and fairly low alcohol presence - maybe a touch of warming.

D - A bit too sweet for my tastes - I could have used a bit more oak or roast character to balance the sweet cognac notes. Still, a highly enjoyable treat that is best in small doses. Would happily drink again.

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MasterSki from Ontario (Canada), Jun 17, 2012
Photo of Treebs
4.35/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 ml waxed bottle served in a New Glarus tasting glass. Bottle # 354/534. Thanks to Mike (AgentZero) for the share.

A: See Lord, Dark. For those that are less inclined, this beast pours absolutely pitch black in color with a dark tan head. Recedes quickly to a thick collar that leaves sticky lace behind.

S: Molasses. Sweet dark fruits, mostly raisins with a combination of creamy malts and toasted oak. Dark chocolate bitterness is paired well the sweet cognac.

T: The taste is much better than the nose. The cognac is up front, but it quickly gives way to the mild oak barrel. Sweet vanilla and decadent caramel are paired with a chocolate brownie. Booze soaked raisins and roasted malts combined for a nice sweet molasses finish that is reminiscent in the base beer.

M: A nice chewy body is complimented with a medium to low carbonation and sweet finish.

O: The barrel is very mellow, but you can still pick out all the nice flavors of it. Definitely sweet just like the 2011 DL, but it wasn't cloying in the least bit. A must try.

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Treebs from Illinois, Jun 10, 2012
Photo of largadeer
3.96/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Black as pitch and extremely viscous with a quickly receding brown crust.

Big boozy Cognac nose. Spicy and peppery with a ton of fudge, molasses and vanilla. Very sweet and complex. Notes of caramel and dark fruit lend depth.

The first thing noticed is the tremendously full body. The barrel aged Dark Lords have always been huge beers, but this feels more rich and oily than usual. Flavors of chocolate brownies and dark fruit hit the tongue first, followed more fruity sweetness from the Cognac barrel along with an odd peppery, spicy note that must be coming from the oak. Vanilla and caramel appear mid-palate. The finish is warming and sweet with lingering Cognac, oak and molasses.

Nice stuff, but I prefer some of the other barrel aged Dark Lord variations. 5 ounces was more than enough for me.

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largadeer from California, May 22, 2012
Photo of brystmar
4.6/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks to blatantdream for sharing!

Black pour, not too much head or lace. Aroma shows plenty of cognac and booze. But screw that -- this beer is all about the taste!

Tremendous complexity from the cognac barrels adds layers of intrigue atop the Dark Lord base. Good amount of sweetness, but it's not overpowering. Strong booze character blends well with the present flavors to create complete one of the best, most complex, and most delicious tasting stouts I've ever consumed.

This is my first BA DL (aside from a small pour of BA Vanilla at DLD) and suffice to say I'm impressed. A first-rate imperial stout; unquestionably one of the best I've ever consumed. Need moar!

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Photo of Sean9689
4.42/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks, Aaron. Sample @ DLD 2012.

A - Pours motor oil black, stains the glass with a brown film, thin mocha head, thin collar, wisps here and there.

S - Chocolate, smooth congnac booze, oak, burnt sugars, caramel. The nose is very sweet, the the booze helps balance things out pretty well. Really well done...impressive.

T - Cognac, burnt sugars, oak, caramel, toffee, milk chocolate. Again, lots of sweetness and smooth booze. Really just spot-on and enjoyable. The cognac barrels turn this beer into a different beast.

M - Full body, light carbonation, rich and smooth, creamy finish

O - Dare I say my favorite Dark Lord variant ever? Def right up there. Wow, cognac does some wonderful stuff to just about any base beer, and it's no different here. Perfect balance between sweetness and booze...get some of this!

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Sean9689 from Illinois, Apr 29, 2012
Cognac Barrel Aged Dark Lord from 3 Floyds Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 95 out of 100 with 125 ratings