Hardywood Park Craft Brewery

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Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
Virginia, United States
Stout - Sweet / Milk
Ranked #12
Ranked #330
4.45 | pDev: 7.19%
Jan 01, 2022
Oct 11, 2014
Notes: Apple Brandy Barrel Aged Imperial Milk Stout.
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
4.56 by Coronaeus from Canada (ON) on Jan 01, 2022
4.61 by KAP1356 from Pennsylvania on Mar 14, 2021
4.36 by Wisconsin_IPA_Lover from Wisconsin on Feb 25, 2021
4.29 by mjpolzin from Wisconsin on Feb 01, 2021
4.44 by GaryM6 from New York on Jan 28, 2021
4.18 by beerrat from Virginia on Jan 28, 2021
Photo of NotVeryCreative16
5/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
by NotVeryCreative16 from South Carolina

Very different yet incredible. One of the best beers I've had.

Jan 24, 2021
4.59 by Eyedoc27 from Illinois on Oct 18, 2020
3.9 by BelgianHops from Belgium on Aug 13, 2020
Photo of Beejay
4.63/5  rDev +4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75
by Beejay from Virginia

Many thanks to Bolte for this brew.

A: Dark black in color with a very dark brown head, that rises out of the body of the beer.

S: Like most of the Hardywood Barrel agings, this one does not shy away from the barrel character. Huge oak and apple brandy character. Some apple crumble notes as well as dark brown sugar.

T: SWeet up front with baked apple and brown sugar. Oak and vanilla come out as well as a roasted grain character with just a touch of smoke. Finish is toasted marshmallow and coconut.

M: Rich, smooth, and creamy. With a long linger.

O: This is a pretty phenomenal beer. You should get one.

Apr 24, 2020
Photo of Riff
3.98/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
by Riff from Virginia

Pours black with minimal chocolate brown head that fades away to nothing shortly afterwards. Smell is brandy heavy with notes of chocolate. Taste is apples and brandy, chocolate, roasted malts, brown sugar, and dark fruits. Lighter body than I expected but still about medium heavy. Little to no carbonation. I like the flavor of this, but it can't hide the booze so there is some noticeable heat that may turn off some. A solid stout though a tad pricey for what it is compared to some others available.

Feb 23, 2020
Photo of teromous
3.49/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5
by teromous from Virginia

There does not appear to be a date on the bottle but this was purchased at the brewery for the 2019 release.

Appearance: The body is black and it never forms a head even with a vigorous pour. It starts to develop just a very light film of bubbles but they go away almost instantly, leaving a sheet of black onyx across the surface. There are some very small bubbles around the edge of the glass that don't even form a ring. Even for a beer that has "ALC 13.5% BY VOL" (as indicated by the label) it is still below average looking.

Aroma: It is very boozy smelling. It has a brandy liqueur aroma which is very noticeable. There is a light aroma of Bing cherries. A light aroma of wet wood sneaks around in the background.

Taste; It has a very strong alcohol presence. It tastes more like spirits than beer. There is a light fruitiness to the beer that is not distinct to any specific fruit, but tastes a bit like red wine and plum. There is a lightly charred flavor at the end.

Mouthfeel: It is very smooth and although there is a high presence of alcohol in this beer it maintains a nice full body that never feels thin. It is a bit sticky at the end and carbonation is low. It is definitely a sipper.

Overall: It is a very boozy beer so that could be a turn-off for some. The label states that this is an "IMPERIAL MILK STOUT AGED IN APPLE BRANDY BARRELS." It does have the aroma of brandy and there is a mild fruity character to the beer but nothing that tastes specifically like apple brandy. The Imperial Milk Stout flavors are lost behind the boozy character of the beer. There was a light char to the beer but that could just as easily have been from the barrel as from the grains. I recommend drinking this with a palate cleanser or some food due to how boozy it is. I would say that it is worth trying, especially if somebody gave it to you at a get together, but it isn't put together well enough for me to recommend seeking it out. I could drink it again, or not.

Oct 31, 2019
4.55 by reebtaerG from Maryland on Oct 28, 2019
4.5 by NolaHopHead from Louisiana on Aug 16, 2019
Photo of cjgiant
4.4/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by cjgiant from District of Columbia

A sipper of a beer with a full yet slick mouthfeel that is offset by a bit of char and alcohol bite.

An oil slick out of the bottle generates a finger and a half of dark mocha head. A medium ring of that dark creaminess lasts, though no lace is produced.

Nose has the sweetness of brandy (though not apple specifically, to me) that mixes with a dark chocolate roasted malt, burnt brown sugar, and dark sweet fruits with a hint of the barrel itself. The silky liquid coats with a little bit of sweetness from the lactose at first, morphing to include a bit of a charred brown sugar impression as it warms. The apple brandy gives a mix of fruits, most often fig or prune when mixed with the malts, though I get a blueberry jam on occasion. The apple part of the brandy is specifically noted as the bolder notes fade about mid-taste.

A very nice big beer, right in line with others from Hardywood. The flavors mix the base stout with the barrel aspect pretty well, with the milk stout keeping the lead role. As stated, the minor problem I had was that, even with a few months on this beer, there's still a slight harshness in the back that tugs the experience downward slightly.

May 28, 2019
5 by WolverineFan1243 from Colorado on May 19, 2019
4.42 by Hopsiam14 from Minnesota on May 06, 2019
4.35 by AleHunter805 from California on Apr 04, 2019
Photo of rbaugham
4.87/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75
by rbaugham from Virginia

One of the most extraordinary and exquisite tasting beers I can honestly say I've ever had. A masterpiece.

Apr 03, 2019
4.28 by BirdsandHops from Oregon on Mar 10, 2019
4.21 by nmann08 from Virginia on Mar 03, 2019
Photo of VABA
4.3/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
by VABA from Virginia

A-Pours a very dark color with a slight head and lacing
A-Aroma has malt, chocolate and slight apple brandy hints
T-The taste follows the nose with a malt, chocolate and a slight apple brandy flavor
M-A medium bodied decently carbonated beer
O-A good Stout

Feb 26, 2019
Photo of HattedClassic
4.29/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
by HattedClassic from Virginia

The beer pours a nice dark brown head that dissipates fairly quickly while the beer itself is a sweet and delicious looking dark chocolate brown with a very good syrup like texture to it that makes it look even more appetizing.

The smell is very good. It has a delicious mix of green apple, slight alcohol note with light vanilla notes. The milk chocolate note comes out more in the finish while there is a bitter molasses note that cuts straight to the nose.

The taste is pretty good. It has a strong green tart apple note upfront with a slight bit of alcohol to it. The chocolate note is hidden underneath it all and it lost that molasses note except in the aftertaste.

The feel is good. It has a heavy body with a syrupy feel to it.

Overall, a pretty interesting beer that's worth getting a hold of if it's available even if it's a bit too sweet.

Feb 15, 2019
Photo of TheSixthRing
3.37/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25
by TheSixthRing from California

From tasting notes 11/09/18
Had on-tap at Hardywood Brewery in Richmond, VA

Appearance - Served up in a "wide flute", pitch black with a barren surface. No lacing.

Smell  - Strong molasses and bourbon booze aroma. Lesser hints of oak, vanilla and chocolate.

Taste - Follows the nose. Crazy amount of molasses. Strong boozy burn. Notes of chocolate, earth and vanilla take a backseat.Molasses rules all. Eh.

Mouthfeel - Full in body with low but tingly carbonation. Syrupy texture that quickly turns dry and sticky with a warming booze finish.

Overall - Not terrible, but way too sweet, sticky and boozy for my preference.

Jan 13, 2019
4.53 by Uconnelmo from Connecticut on Jan 13, 2019
Photo of avalon07
4.42/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
by avalon07 from South Carolina

L: Had this beer on-tap at Capital Ale House - Innsbrook, poured into a snifter glass. Had a dark brown / black color and a thick, opaque consistency. There was a 3/4", creamy, tan-colored, long-lasting head. Fair lacing.

S: A very good aroma of chocolate, caramel, malt, cherries, apples, and molasses.

T: Tasted of a moderate amount of malt (present throughout), a definite creamy quality (especially in the finish), a good shot of chocolate, some of the advertised apple brandy, light cherry notes, and a little molasses. This is an extremely robust, complex, and powerful flavor. It has lots of character and even some subtlety.

F: A decent amount of carbonation with a smooth, creamy finish. Full-bodied.

O: An exceptionally well made, easy to drink beer. Drinkable.

Jan 01, 2019
Photo of Lingenbrau
4.35/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
by Lingenbrau from Oregon

(Review under construction. Thanks Craig!)

Pitch black, clean, and with one handsome reflection. A thin creamy dark brown ring of foam. Cold pressed coffee looking.

Tons of booze and chocolate. Light coffee. Wood. Brown sugar.

Similar flavor with a sweet and tart fruity bite. Roasted. Cinnamon stewed apples.

Very creamy. Big booze warmth.

Damn good. Sipper if there ever was one.

Dec 25, 2018
Photo of RyskeeVA
4.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
by RyskeeVA from Virginia

Deceptively strong. Only complaint is it’s a little thinner than expected

Dec 25, 2018
4.5 by Jason_cs from Florida on Dec 12, 2018
4.35 by BrookW from Virginia on Dec 09, 2018
4.47 by jheimbigner from Washington on Dec 03, 2018
4.5 by Cpmitchno1 from Virginia on Nov 29, 2018
4.38 by Dark_Scarecrow from Virginia on Nov 23, 2018
4.5 by petewheeler from Maryland on Nov 04, 2018
4.53 by srw from Virginia on Oct 30, 2018
4.25 by ADTaber from South Carolina on Oct 21, 2018
4.52 by ellswrth from Oregon on Aug 25, 2018
4.94 by HOPTOMIC_BOMB from California on Aug 22, 2018
4.44 by BSecaida from California on Aug 18, 2018
4.29 by Rothobinide from California on Aug 05, 2018
Trickery from Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 98 out of 100 with 523 ratings