Bourbon Barrel Stout | Odell Brewing Company

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Bourbon Barrel StoutBourbon Barrel Stout
Very Good
350 Ratings
Bourbon Barrel StoutBourbon Barrel Stout

Brewed by:
Odell Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: American Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.50%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
Imperial Stout aged in Buffalo Trace and Old Fitzgerald bourbon barrels. 2011 batch was aged in Stranahan's barrels.

Added by waltonc on 09-12-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 350 |  Reviews: 190
Reviews by the Alström Bros:
Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.5/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #34 (Nov 2009):

Black as a witch's feline familiar. Surprised at the head retention, as so many barrel-aged beers lose their heads quickly ... not here. Toasted wood, deep-roasted grain, caramel, faint vanilla and black currants flaunt an impressive aroma. A little velvet in that smoothness, the dry palate shows its fluffy medium body. Boozy up front with an initial blast of fusel alcohol, it fades quickly to let in the wood, vanilla and caramel flavors. Maltiness unveils a solid foundation for the complexities to perch on; even with its dryness and an unwavering barrel flavor, it stays true to its beery nature. Some warmth in the finish, with some residu- als as well, but it lands pretty dry for the most part.

While it is usually pleasing to have the overly sweet, barrel-aged Stouts, we prefer a drier and more drinkable version.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of brownbeer
4.63/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours black without being oily or heavy with a light brown head.

Very clean nose, which I think sets this one apart. Rich and bourbony with chocolate and coffee. Very well rounded.

The flavor has a fair amount of chocolate, the whiskey flavor comes in about mid-palate with a dry coffeeish finish.

So clean, soft and smooth. Just a wonderful experience for anyone who loves bourbon barrel stouts.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
4.55/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Loud cork pop after it was really hard to remove. Deep black pour a half inch of cocoa foamy head on top. Dark brown highlights. Aromas of smooth dark malts with cocoa, vanilla and wood. Coffee undertone melds with a sweet bourbon accent. Caramel with a hint of toasted coconut. Very nice.

First sip brings smooth, creamy dark malts with powdered cocoa and caramel swirls. Toasted coconut and vanilla meld with a lovely, yet not overpowering oak and bourbon flavor. Flows down easy. Bourbon is just right and not overwhelming in the least. Super smooth with no trace of 10.5% ABV.

Smooth, not too heavy, easy drinking. A damn fine bourbon stout to be had here from Odell. Would love to have this again sometime as it's just about perfect. Seek this tasty brew out.

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Photo of bulldogg915
4.75/5  rDev +21.2%

Photo of Mora2000
3.95/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Exiled for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours dark brown with a tan head. The aroma is dark fruit, chocolate, oak, vanilla and bourbon. The flavor is not as complex. It is heavy on the vanilla and here is also some oak and milk chocolate notes. The vanilla stands out. The alcohol is not detectable. The mouthfeel is a little thinner than I like on big stouts and the carbonation level is low.

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Photo of MileHighCity86
4.7/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Photo of olradetbalder
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of NilocRellim
3.5/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of boatshoes
4.4/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

My brother sent me this bottle as part of a graduation present package last year. Just getting around to drinking it now.

Appearance- Pours jet black out of the bottle with a surprisingly active and nice looking two and a half or so fingers of dark brown head rising of the body. Pretty good retention, with the head eventually dying back to a sheeting across the top of the beer. A solid amount of lacing left as I drink as well.

Smell- Wow, lots of vanilla right off the bat. Big on vanilla with some very sweet and mild smelling bourbon action working in the background. Big notes of roasted malt and some dark chocolate as well. Vanilla is most prominent for me.

Taste- Lots of vanilla and sweet brown sugar, with some evident barrel. A lot of rich roast but sweet flavors dominate over the burnt. Just a touch of bitter chocolate on the finish.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Mouthfeel is quite good, being both substantial but nicely carbonated as well. Drinkability is decent for the style but a little sweet to be spectacularly drinkable.

Overall, a very good bourbon barrel stout and very approachable. May not be the best I've had in the style but yet another excellent offering from Deschutes.

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Photo of rudylaw
4.2/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Ordered from LiquorMax and sampled fifth in a ten stout tasting. Placing ninth for me, but top two overall. I will say that when it comes to bold, bourbon stouts, this is probably my favorite. It may have placed low on my board, but I will forgo that ranking for this review because I think drinking this on its own is the way to go.

Pours dark brown with about an inch of tan head.

This smells wonderful! Bourbon, milk chocolate and vanilla.

Tastes similar with the main attraction... bourbon! We have a lot of oak and wooden flavors as well. This is definitely still hot! It's smooth, but this could probably use some more time mellowing out. My guys absolutely loved this beer, and if you like bourbon bombs, this is for you! Goes hand-in-hand with GIBCS.

A nice mouthfeel and good carbonation. A solid effort from Odell, even if it's not right up my alley.

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Photo of glid02
3.51/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle shared by Brad - much obliged!

Pours one shade from black with a half-finger tan head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving decent lacing.

Smells...well, infected. Light roasted malts with large amounts of tart dark fruits. Also present are very light hints of dark chocolate.

Thankfully it tastes better than it smells. Heavy roasted malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by semi-sweet chocolate and light molasses. Midway through the sip very slight amounts of oak flavors enter the fray. Slight tart dark fruits make an appearance near the end of the sip, fading out into a moderately bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a heavy thickness with grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is OK. I didn't have a problem finishing my glass however I'm not sure about another.

Overall this beer obviously suffered due to the infection but I'm not so sure it would be all that great uninfected - a bit disappointing for a brewery I enjoy immensely and a beer for which I'd had high hopes. If you've got a bottle drink it now, it's not getting any better.

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Photo of acurtis
3/5  rDev -23.5%

Photo of CrossFitAlex
3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this at The Muddy Pig in Saint Paul, MN.

Chocolate colored ale.

Tasting notes: chocolate, coffee, alcohol and dark fruits on the nose. Alcohol over balances the flavor profile. Chocolate, coffee and dark fruits dominate. Cherry, whisky, oak notes. "Bold" mouthfeel.

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Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.41/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750 mL bottle from 2011.

Pours viscous and pitch black, with a 1/4 finger thick, pale cream head that dissipates into a layer of lace atop the beer. Not as heady or lacy as I'd hope, but the dark body is enticing.

Just what I'd expect from a BBA beer, oaken, vanilla, and spicy bourbon. Slight hints of dark and sweet malts, and some chocolate, are also present. It's tasty smelling.

I continue to get lots of oak and bourbony spice, but I suspect it's mellowed considerably as I'm not overwhelmed by these tastes. In fact, I notice the sweet vanilla and malt and some tasty dark chocolate.

Smoothness is heavy here. This beer has mellowed out excellently. No boozy burn. Silky, creamy and thick-bodied, there's only a slight bite to this and it's more from a rye spiciness than booze.

This beer is right there. The flavor offers many tastes and it's still smooth and silky. I would say this aged very well.

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Photo of IPAylor
2.5/5  rDev -36.2%

Photo of ipa247
2/5  rDev -49%

Photo of AlexChillton
4.5/5  rDev +14.8%

Photo of GilGarp
4.33/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle, corked and caged.

The cork takes some real effort to get out but eventually pops, instantly releasing pleasant bourbon-rich fumes.

It pours into a globe a very dark brown color with creamy alabaster head. The fine bubbles don't last long but they leave some nice lacing in their wake.

Aroma is sweet and full of bourbon and oak barrel. Dark malts come through but it's mostly the rich dark malts and whiskey.

Flavor is really enjoyable - each small sip bringing sweet milk chocolate to the tongue, followed by vanilla and carmel from the oak, and finishes with bourbon and dark roasted coffee.

Mouthfeel is creamy smooth and full bodied. Carbonation is minimal and the alcohol is surprisingly well hidden.

Overall another great success for Odell.

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Photo of victoryoak
4.5/5  rDev +14.8%

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

Bottle from JMBH, thanks Jason. Pours black with thick beige head. Rich bourbon and malt in the nose. Above average mouthfeel, this is a refreshing stout though very bourbon. Very good for what it is, with milky chocolate stoutness in the secondary.Sourness and sugar in the finish.

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Photo of Oboogie
4.25/5  rDev +8.4%

Photo of JoeAmerican77
3.99/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The pitch black bourbon stout rears its ugly, tan, three fingered head at my mini colorado tulip glass and beckons my attention, big 'ol lacing as it lowers... Smells of new tire rubber and heavy hops cut through the air backed with a vinous alcohol spice. Dark chocolate, pomegranate, burnt cigar, rubber cork and huge roasted malts burn up the palate. A lot of new flavors in this bourbon buddy I have not experienced before. Big body and a medium to high level of carbonation make the experience a lively one.

Overall this was a nice experience however I am saddened to find how much this lacked compared to what I expected. Huge bourbon beers come out of the local CO breweries, Great Divide, Avery, Oskar Blues etc put out miracles of bourbon magic yet this BBS was considered the bar to beat a few years ago. Today for the Price point (between 17$-25$) this beer was a little disappointing.

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4.5/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From tasting notes:
I have been most found of this brew of all the Odell single batch series.
A: A deep, cloudy appearance. With excellent head retention and lacing, there could not be a better stout.
S: The notes at the time are a Nuclear Chocolate aroma, with a high intensity. This is the grand pooh-bah of all bourbon stouts.
T/M: A full bodied taste and mouthfeel. This is a bourbon blast, notes from a more mellowed out BBS, but when first released, this was almost too strong on the bourbon side, now a very nice and approachable Bourbon stout.
D: Lower on the drinkability side due to the thickness and after a taster, I feel that I could do more but not with ease or want. A unbelievable brew, but for sharing thats for sure.

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Photo of dirtylou
3.28/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

750ml bottle, paired with post-blizzard conditions and NFL action

2009 batch

appearance: corked & caged, served in an oversized snifter, big ebony body, big chocolate foam, patchy tan lace

smell: chalky, dry cocoa, light roasty notes, bourbon is trace

taste: It appears this beer has had major infection issues - i dont get much sourness but there is definitely a chalky taste and the flavors are off. The bourbon barrel provides some alcohol heat but really nothing in the way of flavor enhancement, carbonation is aggressive leaving a fizzy finish, dry roasty flavors, dry cocoa. If it's not infected, this beer sucks. My hunch is that this is one that got away.

mouthfeel: bad, fizzy foamy body, hot finish

drinkability: meh

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Photo of leschkie
2.5/5  rDev -36.2%

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Bourbon Barrel Stout from Odell Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.92 out of 5 with 350 ratings