Bourbon Barrel Hellfighter (w/ Vanilla Bean) | Karbach Brewing Co.

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Bourbon Barrel Hellfighter (w/ Vanilla Bean)Bourbon Barrel Hellfighter (w/ Vanilla Bean)
155 Ratings
Bourbon Barrel Hellfighter (w/ Vanilla Bean)Bourbon Barrel Hellfighter (w/ Vanilla Bean)

Brewed by:
Karbach Brewing Co.
Texas, United States

Style: American Imperial Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Dicers on 01-23-2015

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 155 |  Reviews: 30
Reviews by tjmodica:
Photo of tjmodica
3.8/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

More User Reviews:
Photo of jtortorice
4.6/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on draft at D&T in Houston. I had to wait 20 minutes for it to warm up because it was served in a tulip SUPER cold. I thought it had Great aroma, subtle bourbon and a touch of vanilla. I was worried that because it was the first batch it would be loaded with vanilla but it's outstanding.

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Photo of brandoneast
4.75/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Just an incredible Imperial Porter. It's rich, decadent, complex and the bourbon barrel character really shines here, accented so well with a blast of vanilla. This is REAL vanilla bean, nothing artificial tasting here. Bottle limits were the only thing keeping me from buying a case of this stuff. Aroma of: Ice cream shoppe baking waffle cones, roasted pecans or walnuts, chocolate fudge, bourbon barrel.

Flavors are spectacular too: vanilla nougat, smooth bourbon without it being boozy, toasted marshmallow, chocolate covered almonds, Zero candy bar, more roasted nuts, some cherry notes from the barrel. Drinks very well.

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Photo of Longhorn08
4.11/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The vanilla seems like an afterthought. I think if I had a regular BBH and put a few drops of vanilla in, I would have the same product. Still good, but the original is way better.

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Photo of E-McFarden
4.74/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

I love this beer. Perfect smell with coconut and vanilla with an oaky background. Taste matches the smell but bursting with an amazingly balanced sweetness of vanilla and oakness. I would buy this beer over and over again.

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Photo of Mattygross44
2.76/5  rDev -35.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2.5

Very very weak taste very watered down not a great thick mouth fill like other top rated beers in its class this def is the Honda of beers in its class. Vanilla taste like a cheap additive like drops of syrup like someone else mentioned! Would def not buy or seek in the future

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Photo of OneEye78
4.31/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a snifter. Pours a black/brown with a little light on the edges as it pours, settles with a nice 3/4 inch head with good retention. Smell is predominantly vanilla, with some dark chocolate and hits of roasted grain. Taste is led by milk chocolate, with some cherry in the middle as it transitions into a firm vanilla finish, with a hint of oaky spice. A vanilla bomb, but not in a bad way. Feel is a little bit thin, but a nice coating and lasting finish, and a medium carb. Overall this is a very nice beer, especially if you like vanilla stouts (which I do). I think it was a slight improvement on the base BBH.

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Photo of Wayne17
4.53/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Smell is bourbon, vanilla, chocolate and oak. The vanilla definitely comes through wonderfully in the nose. First sip follows the nose, big vanilla and bourbon, followed by chocolate and oak. Leave a nice vanilla sweetness on the finish. Bourbon barrel Hellfighter is already one of my favorite beers and the addition of vanilla took it to the next level. Well done Karbach.

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Photo of champ103
4.4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a dark, nearly opaque black color. A two finger tan head forms, and that eventually recedes to a small cap. Leaving rings of lace behind.
S: Light roast, some coffee. Then deep dark chocolate and vanilla beans. Wood/oak in the background, but very balanced.
T: Oh yeah, the vanilla is there. Incredibly balance with the sweetness, dark chocolate, roast, coffee. Oak tannins are more apparent than in the nose. You have to let this warm up in order to get the full vanilla, which again has incredible balance. Love it.
M/D: A big full and viscous body. Ultra smooth and velvety at the same time. No heat at all, and the balance is superb. Which makes this incredible to drink.

I love the balance here. Always amazed with the base barrel aged stout/porter. It strikes that perfect balance for me. The vanilla is not over done here, but still very apparent, as well as not being artificial (at least for my tastes). Really well done, and highly recommended. Also, very glad this is a "limited" release that is actually pretty easy to find.

 1,069 characters

Photo of Bimmers
4.59/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

When I first had the regular BBH I thought it was way too hot to drink and needed to sit a while. I was afraid this would be the same. It's not...It's ready to drink right away. Let it warm up to about 60 and enjoy. The vanilla isn't overpowering, but its there. It doesn't taste artificial like most. It's a very easy drinker, but it will sneak up on you. Enjoy it!

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Photo of Kuges
4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Perfect balance of bourbon and vanilla along with the fact that it's a great porter as a base. I am glad I bought a few of these especially with them being limited release.

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Photo of mig100
4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

8 ounce pour from a 2015 keg served on draft at Craft Pride, as part of their barrel aged beer day for ACBW 2016.

Appearance is black in the glass with frothy mocha swirls and some large bubbles, light shines through with burgundy hue. Nose is subtle vanilla, really don't pick up a ton of it in the aroma. There's also some nice but slight coffee-esque roast and oak coming through. Wow... taste is rich, velvety and natural marshmallow vanilla that really coats the palate, some heat going down. Carbonation level is just about perfect, with that traditional porter roastiness, lingering oak and bourbon helping to dial down some of the sweetness from the vanilla.

Overall an awesome balance of decadent yet natural vanilla sweetness, portery roast and barrel presence. I've had all other variants of the Hellfighter series and this is easily the best and most enjoyable drinking experience.

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Photo of t2grogan
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of IrishGermanAmerican
4.86/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of PSU_Mike
3.79/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Dface
2.74/5  rDev -36%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Photo of JamesStreet
4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of fthegiants
4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of ZachMayer14
4.7/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of jheezee
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of zonker17
4.45/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Draft pour at Karbach restaurant. Quickly receding head with little to no lacing. Black. Burnt marshmallow and wood nose. Vanilla, booze, dark malts, smoke. Alcohol present and welcome. A bit on the thin side and moderate carbonation.

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Photo of erushing
3.58/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of BKotch
4.23/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of JamLand
4.25/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Treyliff
4.26/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle poured into a snifter

A- pours a deep black color with a small foamy khaki colored head that reduces quickly, leaving nothing behind

S- aroma up front consists of chocolate, vanilla & light bourbon, along with brown sugar & caramel. A bit more bourbon on the close

T- bourbon forward up front, quickly followed by a mix of cocoa and vanilla, along with some molasses/brown sugar. Mid-palate retains the bourbon notes and a bit of heat and adds some vanilla cream sweetness. The finish lingers of more spicy bourbon and a hint of vanilla

M- medium body and medium-low carbonation leads to a slightly foamy mouthfeel that turns a but creamy on the finish

O- a bourbon drinkers stout, this one has a bourbon presence throughout. The vanilla is subtle but a nice compliment to the base beer and the barrel aging

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Bourbon Barrel Hellfighter (w/ Vanilla Bean) from Karbach Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.28 out of 5 with 155 ratings