Coney Island Barrel-Aged Human Blockhead
Shmaltz Brewing Company

Coney Island Barrel-Aged Human BlockheadConey Island Barrel-Aged Human Blockhead
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German Doppelbock
4.09 | pDev: 12.47%
Shmaltz Brewing Company
New York, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Coney Island Barrel-Aged Human BlockheadConey Island Barrel-Aged Human Blockhead
Notes: "Imperial American Bock"
Aged in Buffalo Trace Barrels
View: Beers | Events
Reviews: 87 | Ratings: 247
Photo of tdm168
4.08/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark, hazy amber with a mountain of brownish, off white head that is dense and foamy. The cascades down to meet the liquid as the beer pours. The head has amazing retention and leaves a lot of lacing on the glass. The nose is bready, sweet, and caramelly with some notes of dark fruit and alcohol esters. The taste is very malty up front with bready, caramel notes followed by a fruitiness characterized by baked appples, raisins, and dates. The finish is warm with alcohol phenols. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied, warm, smooth, and well carbonated.

This is a solid beer. I've had the original version and I can't pinpoint exactly what if anything the bourbon barrels added to the flavor. Nonetheless, this is flavorful, balanced, smooth, drinkable, enjoyable. I really enjoyed it.

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Photo of Pencible
4.12/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 001/523, Bottled 6/1/11, Reviewed 1/8/12

A: This poured a nearly opaque mahogany with thick tan head.
S: It smelled like strong bourbon and oak and toasted coconut, with some earthy caramel and vanilla and a bit of copper.
T: It tasted like oak and toasted coconut and bourbon, with some earthy caramel and copper, and a bit of vanilla and citrus. It had a mostly clean and sweet aftertaste with some alcohol warming.
M: It was fairly thick with some carbonation. Slick and fully body.
D: If you don't like bourbon, stay away from this brew. But if you do like bourbon, this is a great drink. There wasn't much beer character to it, but it had a nice scent and taste and body nevertheless. It was fairly hot, so it must be sipped. Not sure how it would age, but I really liked it fresh.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.17/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4


Bottle shared by Vince at Strong Ale 2011, thanks!

A: Hazy dark red with a small beige head.

S: Bourbonic caramel with vanilla and light coconut. There's a lot of toffee, as well as oak and baked bread. This smells very good.

T: Lots of caramel with notes of bourbon and oak. I get a little toffee with accompanying bread and a light nuttiness. The beer is lightly bitter with a touch of alcohol in the finish.

M: Upper medium in body with matching carbonation.

Overall: I had no expectations going in but this impressed me.

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Photo of Jesstyr
3.89/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours reddish light brown, appearance is closest to a belgian dubbel in my opinion, which may be a consistent characteristic. Two fingers of head that linger well throughout the drink. Nose is strong on the bourbon which is a definite plus in my book - so often these bourbon aged beers dont carry as much of the characteristic.

Taste is malty, but really lacks any depth beyond the bourbon - this seems to be a standard dobbelbock. Would appreciate some more diversity, maybe a little more bite to it. Nice medium body for an overall good drink.

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Photo of trxxpaxxs
4.35/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to barfdiggs for sending me this bottle.

A: Poured into my Ommegang goblet, this beer is a translucent redish brown. The reds really shine through when held up to a light. There is one finger of frothy khaki head that settles nicely.

S: Smells sweet and malty with notes of stone fruits. I get some plum and cherry in the nose, and even a little bit of raisin. There is also a really mellow hint of the barrel aging process (a nice vanilla undertone).

T: Starts off with a surprising mix of sweet and spice. The malts and stone fruits come through, but there is a peppery characteristic that mingles well on the palate. But after that first hit the flavors shift to a ton of vanilla and oak. It's fantastic! The finish is straight bourbon. It ever has that warming sensation, like I'm drinking straight Buffalo Trace on the rocks. Wow!

M: Medium bodied beer that is smoooth. Really smooth. Did I mention that it's smooth.

O: I've never had a Barrel Aged Imperial American Bock before, probably because I don't know if anyone has ever made one before, but I'm a fan. The barrel aging on this beer is no joke. In fact, I feel like it's the focal point of this brew. It's almost like Shmaltz wanted to see what beer could absorb as much Buffalo Trace as humanly possible. Well the definitely succeeded.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4.54/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a snifter)
Batch/Case 001/523
A- The dense clear brown body glows an auburn-garnet color at the base with lots of tiny bubbles quickly trail up the glass. There is a bubbly light tan head that sits on top for a good bit.
S- The aroma of wet oak barrel and lagered toffee malts support a maple syrup quality from the barrel. There is a fusel alcohol note in the finish that takes on an ether quality as the beer opens.
T- The slightly sweet toffee and dark caramel flavors are supported by oak and vanilla with a touch of butter flavors and there are some green raisin characteristics that start to come through aswell. There is a paper drinking straw flavor and some new barrel notes that linger a bit after each sip. M- The medium mouthfeel has a cleaning fizz and a soft alcohol heat that grows to a prick in the finish.
O- The great balance of barrel flavors and bock malts really grow with depth and character as the beer opens. The oak notes start to dominate but they are delicious so it works well.

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Photo of DoubleSimcoe
4.15/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Coney Island Barrel Aged Human Blockhead, bottle bought at Whole Foods Columbus Circle on late November 2011. Bottled 1/6/11.

I have been wanting to try this brew for quite a long time but never acted on it due to the price... here we go, finally!

"Imperial American Bock", no less... American brewers keep pushing the envelope of styles and labels. Cheers to that.

Appearance: Served on my brand-spanking-new Lost Abbey chalice (thanks, Tomme, for brewing flat beers!). A hasty pour produces an exuberant head, three fingers crowned by lively bubbles. Great retention (at least one finger of head remains throughout) and carbonation. Color is a deep, rusty caramel, very similar to a barleywine.

Smell: Hell Yes!!! Bourbon goodness through and through. Caramel, butterscotch, vanilla, coconut. Boozy sweetness. Brown butter, diacetyl. Would love to make a sauce with this!

Taste: Follows nose, with yet more caramel, toffee, coconut shavings and dry vanilla. The barrel is ever-present here, woodsy and dry... lick it, baby! Ton of malt and sticky booze at the end. A surprising hope presence around the edges.

Mouthfeel: A bit of a failure here... thin all around with a sharp boozy finish. It stings! Unbalanced and on fire. As it warms up, it becomes more alcoholic and untenable.

Overall: I love all of these Shmaltz/He'Brew barrel releases, and can't wait to try Genesis 15:15. Sure, a lot of them are a bit too strong on the barrel/booze, but if you like bourbon, this suits you. The only objection here would be the price ($11.99 plus tax). If it were, let's say, $8.99, I would buy another bottle in a heartbeat!

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle - $10.99 at Olde Crabapple Bottle Shoppe in Alpharetta, Georgia. Batch No. 001, Cases 523. Bottling Date: 6/1/2011 (I wish other labels were so informative).

Appearance: Pours a deep, dark amber body with a very tall, lasting, light beige head despite a fairly gentle pour. Small smattering of lace on the way down.

Smell: Wood staves brushed with a caramel coating, moistened raisin bread, accents of vanilla and dried coconut with the Buffalo Trace bourbon being fairly prominent in the nose.

Taste: Sweet tastes of caramel and toffee overneath a vibrantly bready maltiness, then, a bit of vanilla, rum raisin, and a sprinkling of toasted coconut shavings before the soothing bourbon rolls in. A bit of spiciness darts in and out and amongst the various flavors. Malty, smooth, drying finish with a lingering bourbon element.

Mouthfeel: Medium-plus body. Medium carbonation.

Overall: While still sweet, the barrel treatment has most definitely curtailed the strong sweetness from the original brew. Now, to sit and enjoy this while my shepherd’s pie is finishing off in the oven.

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Photo of nrbw23
4.19/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a murky brownish color with a really nice foamy tan head. Head has pretty solid retention and leaves some really nice layered lacing.

S- Smell is quite a bit of bourbon, oak and vanilla. A lot of sweet malts also are jumping out at me. I'm really enjoying the aroma this brew procduces.

T- Quite a bit of a bourbon taste here and I really like it. A good amount of wood, vanilla and spicey hops round things out. If your a fan of a heavy bourbon taste you'll like this brew for sure.

M- Fuller side of medium and lower in carbonation.

O- I really enjoyed this brew. I hope I'm able to come across another some day. If not a big thanks to the wife for picking this one up for me.

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Photo of jayhawk73
3.66/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark amber color w/ a perfect one finger cocoa head. Good lacing on my snifter glass. Crimson highlights when held up to the light. Nose is caramel malt, bourbon, vanilla, some fruit in the background. The bourbon and vanilla are really out front on this one. I'd like a little more balance in the nose. Taste is very similar to the nose- the bourbon and vanilla are just too heavy for me. The 10% ABV is evident in the taste as well. It's not bad, but not at all balanced, and a little boozy. Feel is medium-full, with nice hops/malt battle. Aftertaste is that of bourbon. Overall, this is a good beer.. but not quite up to what it could be. A little more balanced brew would significantly raise the score for me. Cheers.

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Photo of smokeypeat
3.88/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice garnet red into the glass with a fairly lively head for a BA beer. The head quickly dissipates leaving a thin film on the top of the beer. Minimal lacing is present. The bourbon really is the foremost aroma present with oak, light vanilla, and some brown sugar present. Taste is pretty bourbon forward with some nice caramel notes and toast accents there as well. Carbonation levels were actually good with the beer having a nice creaminess to it. Overall a pretty nice solid beer with some obvious barrel aging that didn't break the bank ($10.49).

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Photo of jzeilinger
3.88/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a very dark red color with a tight, small ring of caramel colored lacing.

S - Nose is quite small for a beer of this stature. Figs, raisins, caramel/toffee malt, light bourbon.

T - Wow! The taste is nothing at all like the nose, very rich and complex. This reminds me more of a barleywine with all the complex layers going on. Bourbon presence is big followed by vanilla, toffee, caramel, figs, raisins, and a boozy, pine bourbon finish. Very dry on the finish and the pine citrus bitterness lingers while cutting through the sweet toffee leftover on the palette.

M - A little light in body for a beer of this stature, very dry finish, and the malts create a little bit of tartness on the tongue.

O - This one is the biggest surprise of the evening and what I consider to be the best beer Comet Island has put out. Then again, I'm also a sucker for most beers aged in bourbon barrels. Definitely worth checking out, I made this my last beer of the night and wished I ordered this sooner because I would love a 2nd one.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.58/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From 10/22/11 notes. Had on tap at FireWorks in Arlington, VA, served in a snifter.

a - Pours a dark reddish brown color with one inch of off white head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of bourbon, wood, vanilla, caramel malts, and alcohol. Alcohol is pretty strong and overpowering. Some very nice notes in the nose, and with a little less alcohol it could be great.

t - Tastes of wood, vanilla, caramel malts, raisins and dark fruits, bourbon, alcohol, and bready malts. Again, very nice but alcohol is overpowering, so docks its score a bit.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation.

o - Overall a good beer but the strong alcohol in the nose and mouth hurts it a bit. I feel like with some time on it this beer could be really great. Would be interested in getting a bottle and putting it in the cellar for a bit but for now, would pass again on tap.

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Photo of JizackFH
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - This beer pours a clear ruby copper color. It has a big fluffy 3-finger off-white head on it. The head has good retention, and it leaves some nice lace behind. There are quite a bit of rising carbonation bubbles visible.

S - There are some big bourbon and vanilla smells right off the bat. There is some caramel malt and dark fruitiness here, mostly raisins. Also, I am getting a bit of booziness.

T - The taste starts off with caramel malt and a pretty big raison flavor. Vanilla and bourbon are definitely present. The alcohol flavor is pretty present, but it really isn't too present. There is a sort of weird dry bitterness that comes out of no where in the finish. It's not bad, it just kind of caught be off guard.

M - This has a medium body and pretty good carbonation. It goes down easy and has a little bit of a chewy feel to it. It has a nice sweetness to it, except for the bitterness on the back end. There is a bit of alcohol warmth as well.

O - This has good drinkability. It is a bit of a sipper, but I quite enjoy the flavor. I am a big fan of raisin flavor it beer, and this has plenty. Overall, I thought it was a nice and interesting beer. I recommend trying it out. Don't drink it to fast though, this one will sneak up and kick your ass.

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Photo of emmasdad
3.53/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a ruby red color with a thick, foamy tan head. Nice malty aroma here, oak, caramel, brown sugar and maybe raisin. On the palate, a little bit of alcohol dryness, but mostly sweet biscuity malt, bourbon, caramel/toffee and a smattering of dark fruits. A nice strong lager, maybe a cross between a doppelbock and a barleywine. Nice.

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Photo of perrymarcus
4.1/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle served in a snifter.
bottling date 06/01/2011

pours a deep amber / borderline chestnut tone with orange highlights; yields a frothy finger + of a beige shaded head. decent retention and lacing.

nose is malt-heavy with notes of caramel, vanilla, bourbon, and a little oak. some dark fruit characters. nothing transcendent here but nice.

more of the same going on in the flavor. caramel malt leads the way, joined by vanilla, raisin, bourbon, and some brown sugar. a bit boozy. medium-heavy on the palate with average carbonation.

overall very tasty. no 'wow' factor per se, but being a sucker for bourbon barrel aging it gets a bump from me. decent degree of complexity.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
2.95/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I picked this up at a BevMo for $4.69 after it wouldn't scan. After seeing it at other stores for $10+ after the fact I guess I got a lucky deal in regards to price.

Batch # 1. Bottled 6/1/11.

Pours a slightly hazy iced tea color with a 2 inch puffy beige head. A nice latticework of lace clings to the side of the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted coconut, vanilla, wood, and some malt aromas. The barrel aging of this beer is definitely the dominant smell on the nose. Taste is again of the barrel aging with toasted coconut, vanilla, wood, caramel, malt, and a weird chemical flavor. The off-flavor is present on the finish and reminds me of paint thinner or acetone. Unfortunately, this pretty much completely ruins the flavor of the beer. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a smooth and creamy mouthfeel. Overall, this is an average beer that could have been great. The aroma is good but the taste is seriously compromised. I am glad I picked one of these up to try but I am glad that I only spent what I did considering how bad this beer tastes.

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Photo of ATLbeerDog
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Mark!

Pours an amber/red that is certainly not filtered. A thick frothy 2 finger head tops the brew and is very slow to recede. When it does it leaves just a touch of lacing. Beautiful notes of bourbon mixed with sweet malts comprise this delicious nose. Let there be no doubt it is the bourbon that dominates the aroma. First sip is also dominated by the bourbon but the base beer shines through with caramel and ripe figs contributing. Light bodied yet somehow still creamy. The 10% is well hidden even with the bourbon flavors. Maybe a touch of age is showing as this bottle is now just past 3 months old. Doesn’t matter as this one’s a keeper.

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Photo of claytong
4.28/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

batch no 1
bottling 6/1/2011

appearance - great lacing. truly amber in color though listed as an imperial american bock on bottle. amazing head and great sticking to side.

smell - bourbon, oak, alcohol, vanilla

taste - alcohol, vanilla, oak and then bourbon. brown sugar lingers with cloying.

mouthfeel - good carbonation, medium body. a bit of cloying but not too mad.

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Photo of DovaliHops
4/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a murky brown with a small, tan head. Scent is heavy with bourbon, vanilla, caramel...and a bit of oak. Taste is initially caramel malt with delicious sweet bourbon and vanilla. Some chocolate too. A bit of booze...but not enough to be off-putting. Mouthfeel is big and rich, but not to thick or syrupy. Drinkability is fairly high. Overall, I love me my bourbon-barrel-aged brews, and this is a tasty one. Could use a little time though to mellow out.

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Photo of phichifiji00
3.18/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2011 bottle, poured into Bruery tulip glass:

Appearance: Coppery/Brown color, slight head (white in color).

Smell: Bourbon, Brown Sugar, Molasses, Vanilla.

Taste: Bourbon, Brown Sugar, Molasses, Vanilla, Boozy and Slightly malty.

Mouthfeel: Medium-Heavy bodied, boozy aftertaste.

Overall: Good Bourbon Barrel beer taste, boozy aftertaste.

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Photo of DaveHS
4.12/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Pours clear chestnut amber with an inch of khaki/pale yellow foamy head. Fizzes down quickly, leaving flecks of soapy lacing.

S-Mango slices soaked in bourbon. Caramel, vanilla, oak. Tropical fruit sweetness.

T/M-Extremely smooth. The mouthfeel on this is off the charts. Very mellow, without a trace of heat or boozy dryness. Allows the bourbon oak to come through elegantly. The body is a bit thin and the flavor profile is one dimensional (pretty much just a vehicle for bourbon barrel character) but other than that, this is pretty damn good.

O-Another solid barrel aged effort from Schmaltz. Loving what these guys have been doing lately.

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Photo of JayS2629
4.09/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a murky dark brown with a thin tan head that faded fast and left ok lacing.

The aroma was of brown sugar, butterscotch, oak and bourbon. Light earthy hops, some hebs and a hint of vanilla and cocoa.

The taste follows with a great balance of oak, bourbon, chocoalte, butterscotch, and brown sugar. Complex with herbal hop touches. Nicely balanced. A bit sweet, but not cloying. Butterscotch is usually considered a flaw, but I enjoyed its presence and how it was balanced in.

Very rich, thick, and smooth.

Overall it was a very complex, interesting, and enjoyable sipper.

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Photo of rowingbrewer
3.27/5  rDev -20%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer was a bit of a let down for me. The beer pours ammedium brown and totally see through color. There is a light tan very fizzy head like that on topmof a rootbeer. The smell was the best part of this beer with a wonderful bourbon nose. The flavor was completely dominated by the bourbon. The mouthfeel was thin and overly carbed. I though the beer was average. Inwas expecting a much darker slightly thicker base beer. I guess I should have tried the base beer before going for the barrel aged.

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Photo of aasher
3.58/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

An Imperial American Bock aged in Buffalo Trace barrels. That's enough to draw me in.

This one pours a moderately cloudy mahogany in color with a one finger beige colored head. It smells of Buffalo Trace, vanilla, and oak. It doesn't have great complexity but I dig it. The beer is very sweet. It's dominated by vanilla and oak and has a light bourbon finish that stays with the aftertaste. It's ok, but too much sugar. It drinks well for the content. The booze is lost behind the bourbon notes. It has pretty nice flavor and I must say I'm a fan. This is a beer that I enjoy but doesn't grade particularly well. I'd like to see more bourbon barrel aged lighter beers.

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Coney Island Barrel-Aged Human Blockhead from Shmaltz Brewing Company
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 247 ratings