Bourbon Barrel Cru
Hardywood Park Craft Brewery

Bourbon Barrel CruBourbon Barrel Cru
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Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
Virginia, United States
Quadrupel (Quad)
Ranked #69
Ranked #8,061
4.06 | pDev: 10.59%
Aug 06, 2022
May 02, 2012
Bourbon Barrel CruBourbon Barrel Cru
Notes: "Hardywood Bourbon Barrel Cru is brewed in the fashion of the abbey quadrupel, the grand cru of many of Belgium’s revered monastic breweries. Bourbon Cru displays a sunset orange hue with a substantial head and brilliant clarity after months of barrel aging. The maturity and melding of flavors brought on by the freshly drained bourbon barrels lends an extraordinary sense of harmony to Bourbon Barrel Cru. Almond toffee and oaky vanilla aromatics give way to dark cherries, raisins and mature whiskey. A bit of plum flavor is greeted by caramel overtones and an assertive yet incredibly rounded body and a lingering, bourbon-laced finish.
Abbey-style Quadrupel Aged in Bourbon Barrels
12% ABV
18 IBU"
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Rated: 4.14 by PaulMayer from Virginia

Aug 06, 2022
Rated: 4.02 by Boone757 from Virginia

Aug 02, 2022
Rated: 4.25 by Dharmelink from Wisconsin

May 23, 2022
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Reviewed by DarkLordScott from Wisconsin

4.24/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Pours a red brown almost amber, dark and thick but almost see thru. Aroma is bourbon, dark cherries with a hint of plum. Taste is dark cherries and bourbon. The brew is moderate, falls off the tongue and there is little to no aftertaste; everything is forward based on the tongue. Very drinkable.
May 20, 2022
Rated: 4.25 by paulish from New York

Apr 30, 2022
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Reviewed by trevormajor from Ohio

4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
12 oz bottle, vintage 2021, poured into a snifter at 49 degrees F:
L - copper colored with a head that disappeared quickly
S - bourbon and toffee
T - plum on the nose, followed by bourbon and toffee
F - medium mouthfeel and carbonation
O - very nice flavor, a bit too much carbonation
Dec 16, 2021
Rated: 4.65 by beerrat from Virginia

Sep 17, 2021
Rated: 4.05 by vabeerguy from Virginia

Apr 03, 2021
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Reviewed by BeerAndGasMasks from Virginia

4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
From the small bottle, it pours a clear darker amber with a very small head that reduces quickly to a thin ring. In the nose, it is a bit boozy with notes of bourbon and dark malts. In the mouth, smooth feel with notes of alcohol and malt - no off flavors. Enjoyable, but, be careful...
Mar 29, 2021
Rated: 4.01 by kkazemi from North Carolina

Mar 22, 2021
Rated: 4.08 by GeorgeAKeim from Oregon

Dec 03, 2020
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Reviewed by DIM from Pennsylvania

3.99/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4
A pleasantly sweet, boozy treat here. The label says this aged in freshly emptied whiskey barrels and I believe them. Lots of oaky whiskey notes, not necessarily top tier but satisfying none the less. The Quad characteristics manage to shine through. Some brown sugar, plums, and cherries.

Very good overall, glad I got to try it.
Oct 05, 2020
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Reviewed by CraigDeMoss from Kansas

4.06/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Deep amber with a decent creme head. Some clove and banana coming through, malty and boozy, definitely BBA. Heady, smooth feel, medium full body. Just a tad akin to the heavy Trappist style, more like a strong/old ale though. Seems to get mixed reviews. I enjoyed it.
Oct 01, 2020
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Reviewed by LiquidAmber from Washington

4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours a dark, slightly cloudy reddish orange with a thin light khaki head that dissipates to patches with light lacing. Aroma of candi and caramel malt, plums, raisins and light bourbon. Flavor is dry caramel malt, raisins, plums, hints of light stone fruit, mild oaky vanilla and mild bourbon. Medium bodied with light creaminess. Hits all the expected notes for a quadrupel with a light suggestion of bourbon barreling. The flavor kind of fades out near the end of the taste, but leaves a pleasant dark fruit and caramel aftertaste. Could have used a bit more barrel character, but a nice domestic take and barrel variant of the style..
Aug 09, 2020
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Reviewed by REVZEB from Illinois

3.7/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
Clear mahogany brown with no head. Aroma hits the bourbon and oak with a hint of char before incorporating the dark fruit, brown sugar, caramel and vanilla. Nice but not very distinct. Taste is underwhelming: watery bourbon booze and molasses with dark fruit, oak, and caramel finish that doesn’t pop. Feel is warm, thin, sticky, and just flat. Surprising coming from Hardywood
Aug 03, 2020
Rated: 4.31 by Sound_Explorer from Washington

Jul 05, 2020
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Reviewed by chitoryu12 from Florida

4.57/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Look: Clear dark amber, like a light roast coffee. One finger of off-white head with short retention.

Smell: Sweet dough, bourbon, and stone fruit.

Taste: Sweet malt with a stone fruit backing, plus a little bit of alcohol heat and a nutty, almost savory aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Full and creamy, with good carbonation.

Overall: A fantastic quad that's worth the price.
Jun 25, 2020
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Reviewed by stevoj from Idaho

4.07/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
750ml bottle from Tavour. Small pop on opening, hazy mahogany , small fizzy head. Aroma is raisins, plums, brown sugar with a hint of booze. Taste starts out sweet, pit fruit, molassess, some barrel notes. Not overly boozy and relatively smooth.
Jun 14, 2020
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Reviewed by Beginner2 from Illinois

4.11/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
A well-executed quad using this relatively new trend of aging in barrels that once held spirits. Bought from Tavour.

Bourbon Barrel Cru (BBC) Looks interesting even on this bottle's fourth day open (it's the orange tinge that makes it different among barrel quads.) Smells tell me lots of dark fruit is coming. It does in the Tastes and, then, gives me some nice dessert flavors that highlight vanilla and toffee. BBC can sit in my mouth all night and, this bottle, did on four different nights. A memorable finish.

I went on Hardywood's website. They were pioneer crafters in Richmond; one of the first to use the new law allowing taprooms, starting some 11 years ago. Now they have two. They also give back to the community, particularly in the conservation and sustainability areas. So, I give them good OA hugs.
May 31, 2020
Rated: 4 by steverx8 from England

Feb 10, 2020
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Rated by OompaMentor from Georgia

4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
3/23/2019 - Tinypalooza 4.5; Barrel on back of palate
Feb 05, 2020
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Reviewed by srw from Virginia

4.1/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
L: Pours a clear brown-copper color with minimal head.
S: Caramel, raisins, hints of bourbon.
T: Sweet caramel, raisins, toffee, hints of vanilla with the bourbon starting to show up as the beer warms up.
M: Medium body and low carbonation. Very easy to drink considering the 12%.
O: Interesting take on a quad. The bourbon barrel adds some nice notes and the alcohol is very well hidden.
Jun 28, 2019
Rated: 4.23 by BeardedWalrus from North Carolina

Jun 13, 2019
Rated: 4.12 by JWSRPh from Virginia

May 31, 2019
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Reviewed by ThickNStout from Georgia

3.92/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Corked and caged 750mL bottle from Sprayberry Bottle Shop (Marietta, GA). 13.99. No apparent bottling info given. Served in an oversized Bruery snifter. Enjoyed 8/1/18.

Pours a deep mahogany with remarkable clarity given the dark color. The frothy three fingers of sand-hued head recede to a velvety blanket and generous edging,

There is an initial strong smell of fruity Belgian yeast. That is joined by plums, caramel, toffee, butterscotch and a hint of chocolate.

Flavors of spicy whiskey, nuttiness, dark fruit skins, dark cherries, toffee, caramel, apple, cocoa and estery Belgian yeast.

Smooth medium feel with lively carbonation. Whiskey tinged Belgian yeasty finish.

Hardywood’s Bourbon Barrel Cru is a pretty good take on a barrel aged quad. The right notes are there and it never gets overly boozey despite its heft. S
Jan 07, 2019
Rated: 3.93 by jimpyle48 from Virginia

Sep 18, 2018
Rated: 3.98 by jak from North Carolina

Sep 17, 2018
Rated: 4.5 by 1971bernat from Virginia

Aug 14, 2018
Rated: 4.09 by Bryant1985 from North Carolina

Aug 14, 2018
Rated: 4.21 by smithj4 from New York

Aug 11, 2018
Rated: 4.07 by dbrauneis from North Carolina

Aug 11, 2018
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Reviewed by metter98 from New York

4.02/5  rDev -1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
On-tap at Hardwood Park Craft Brewery, Richmond, VA

A: The beer is hazy brownish red in color. It poured with a dense beige head that has excellent retention properties and hardly died down.
S: Light aromas of bourbon and vanilla are present in the nose.
T: The taste has flavors of oaky vanilla with notes of bourbon. Faint bits of alcohol are also present.
M: It feels medium- to full-bodied on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer isn't overly heavy on the palate and does a relatively good job at hiding most the alcohol from the taste.

Serving type: on-tap
Aug 11, 2018
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Reviewed by jpkand from Virginia

4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
A: a nice clear reddish brown. Looks suspiciously for a quad
S: some kind of dark fruit alcohol, almost like rakia. Nice caramel and oak notes
T: with a quad in a bourbon barrel I was expecting heavy alcohol, but it is not overwhelming. The oak and vanilla from the barrel are there. A sweetness comes through later, but it's not cloying. Caramel, a little toffee, maybe funky ripe plums. The alcohol is noticeable at the end but doesn't overwhelm..I think the barrel sofens it nicely
M: not heavy, pretty easy to drink. Dangerously so given the alcohol content. A medium body on this
O: this version of a quad is what makes the American craft beer scene so interesting. If I tasted it blind I wouldn't say it's a quad, and you can that can be good or bad depending on who you ask. In any case this beer is excellent. Perfect as someone said below to share with people and enjoy on special occasions or just when you feel like you have some minor thing to celebrate. Kudos to hardywood! I'll definitely be buying multiple CRUs next year!
May 22, 2018
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Reviewed by CDGoin from Virginia

4.26/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5
MUCH better cold, and DANGEROUS when Cold too..

It already hides its high ABV and booziness within its complex and yet sweet smoothness.

Cold its so drinkable you could swear its a simple belgian.

Drink it room temp or even say a little on the hot side and the bourbon really comes out.. and you can feel the alcohol hit up front.

Either way its a favorite and I look forward to it every year.. buy a few cases to celebrate and for special events.. A great beer to share with others.
Apr 25, 2018
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Rated by HoodviewBrew from Texas

4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Great raisin and currant smell. Great toffee and caramel taste. combined makes for a sweet flavorful quad.
Apr 25, 2018
Rated: 4 by Howlader from Canada (AB)

Apr 22, 2018
Rated: 4.11 by zknight from Korea (South)

Mar 18, 2018
Rated: 3.8 by leroybrown10 from Missouri

Jan 17, 2018
Rated: 4.16 by yuno from New York

Dec 21, 2017
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Reviewed by ajm5108 from Pennsylvania

4.46/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Rich amber brown, no head or carbonation, like scotch. Aroma begins with whispers of plum & dark cherry liqueur before warm bourbon caramel & oak overtake. Light phenol throughout. Reminiscent of sherry. The bourbon really isn't heavy on this, which is refreshing with so many booze bombs out there. Classic dark fruit phenols upfront - fig, plum, etc - with those bourbon flavors entering on the mid-palate - toffee, caramel, vanilla. Very well-balanced, flavors compliment each other nicely, very rich. A kiss of heat on the end. Perhaps the classic quad flavors could have been more consistent throughout, but that is a bit of a nitpick. Great beer.
Nov 28, 2017
Bourbon Barrel Cru from Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 91 out of 100 with 404 ratings