Bourbon Barrel Aged Hellfighter | Karbach Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding
77 Reviews
Bourbon Barrel Aged HellfighterBourbon Barrel Aged Hellfighter
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Karbach Brewing Co.
Texas, United States | website

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
F.U.N. Series 003 (Apr 2012) aged in barrels from Heaven Hill Distillery which included: Evan Williams, Elijah Craig, and Old Fitzgerald

F.U.N. Series 005 (May 2013) aged in barrels from Evan Williams, Elijah Craig, and Old Fitzgerald

F.U.N. Series 007 (Nov. 2013) aged in barrels from Makers Mark and Four Roses

Added by BgThang on 06-05-2012

BEER STATS
Reviews:
77
Ratings:
502
Avg:
4.31
pDev:
27.15%
 
 
Wants:
159
Gots:
180
For Trade:
20
User Reviews
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Reviews: 77 | Ratings: 502
Photo of ccg
4.15/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is a fantastic-looking porter. It has a foamy head with thick lacing, thick legs, and excellent head retention. The beer itself is jet-black and almost completely opaque. I can only see a little bit of light coming through the edges if I tilt it to the side.
In the smell, there is a lot of whiskey with obvious alcohol, and a bit of woodsy spiciness like rye, but there's also a slightly out-of-place spice, like... I don't know... fennel? It's a little bit odd.
Fortunately, the flavor is quite a bit better. Loads of chocolate and vanilla and oak. The whiskey is tasty without bringing a ton of heat. There's a slight coffee-like, earthy bitterness on the finish. Quite good.
The feel is also satisfying. It's dense with a great creaminess.
This beer was a great surprise. I had heard of it but didn't know much about it. I randomly picked one up when I saw it, and I'm glad I did! Definitely recommended.

 913 characters

Photo of Treyliff
4.22/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

22oz bottle poured into a snifter, 2015 vintage

A- pours black in color with just a bit of light creeping through on the edges, small fizzy off-white head disappears quickly

S- smells of chocolate & caramel, with a big whiff of bourbon, which also brings notes of vanilla, hint of coffee & dark fruit

T- big blast of bourbon up front with plenty of barrel character showing up, along with some vanilla sweetness and earthy wood. Mid-palate brings roasted malt, chocolate and a bit of caramel. The finish brings more bourbon and some alcohol

M- medium body and carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel that continues into a slightly warming finish

O- bourbon-forward throughout and still has a bit of heat, nice sipper

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Photo of marauding_prongs
4.39/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Great beer. it definitely packs a punch. It tastes good. It is definitely a sipping beer (no chugging). My fiance was even willing to try a couple sips (stouts normally don't get past her smelling them). You can also tell it has been barrel ages.

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

Poured at 44°F from a 22oz bottle (2016 vintage) into a snifter. Consumed on 06Jul16.
SMELL: Big aromas of bourbon, molasses, plums, and figs commingle with mild aromas of sweet chocolate, coconut, oak, and vanilla along with subtle amounts of sweet coffee and toffee. Hints of roasted malts provide just the right amount of bitterness.
TASTE: A robust yet balanced flavor is immediately established with strong flavors of bourbon, molasses, figs, and plums smothering the palate. The sweetness profile is augmented as mild flavors of sweet chocolate and vanilla immediately trail. Mild flavors of oak and subtle coconut and toffee flavors add more complexity to the brew. Mild flavors of salty minerals and subtle sweet coffee present a tastier enhancement to the Porter as coconut and toffee flavors grow to mild. Hints of bitter roasted malts end this symphony of brawny balance as all previous flavors persist.
NOTE:

 923 characters

Photo of TBoneJones
4.26/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Stout glass pour is black, with fairly rich body and a low tan head, little lacing.
Smells of chocolate notes, some vanilla and a hefty/ burning aroma of bourbon.
Taste is burnt cocoa, caramel with some vanilla, malts, sweet and wrapped in bourbon barrel.
Aftertaste has some tart berry poking through. Interesting imperial porter.
Feels silky smooth and medium, velvety... terrific mouthfeel.
A very nice barrel-aged effort by a local brewer I don't believe I've sampled.

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Photo of BillRoth
4.28/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Had on tap at Karbach's during Houston beer safari. Wonderful version of a big full silky porter that has been bathed in bourbon, caramel and vanilla from some serious barrel aging. No evidence of its high ABV. Greater sipper that goes great with food or alone. Loved it.

 271 characters

Photo of Shaler_Tate
4.25/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This one is fantastic. This is probably one of the very best stouts brewed in Texas and it is very underrated. It has a super creamy mouthfeel, and perfect viscosity.

 166 characters

Photo of HardTarget
4.34/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Black glass holds a thin halo of dark tan and shows some ruby edges when back lit.

Aroma: Heavy bourbon barrel with some soy sauce and some sour notes.

Taste: Bourbon flavor is strong but compliments a host of other flavors. Chocolate sweetness and alcohol burn fuse into a deep rich concoction. Heavy malt shows a little depth as well with some toffee and caramel notes.

Mouthfeel: Heavy body triggers a mandatory chew, oily texture lasts and alcohol burns.

Overall: Monster beer. Very tasty but the heavy barrel notes may not be to everyone's preference. A nice slow Sunday sipper, I could see getting a couple more but I don't think this would cellar well, chocolate doesn't age nicely.

 705 characters

Photo of h0wdy
4.92/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Look: Deep black coloring with a thin amount of head ontop of it.
Smell: Chocolate with a little bite of liquor in it.
Taste: Chocolate with just enough liquor to enjoy it while not being overbearing.
Feeling: A nice kick that leaves me feeling very pleased with my trade.
Overall: A highly enjoyable drink that is worth a purchase of!

 335 characters

Photo of smanson56
4.34/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This beer poured a dark black color into my Nightshift Snifter. A fairly light thin tan head on top.
The nose is barrel aged bourbon I'm pretty sure. I'm fairly sure that are some hints of chocolate in the nose.
The taste is a smooth barrel aging nice bourbon overtones. I'm finding some dark chocolate in this beer maybe actually a dark Aztec type chocolate.
The mouthfeel is nice and smooth with a nice thickness to this beer.

 431 characters

Photo of WoodBrew
4.38/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Trying the Hell fighter 3 at Mojos Sports Bar and Grill. It is a monster first beer. It poured an opaque black with ecru head that is leaving a lace. The scent had waifs of bourbon. The taste has bourbon, vanilla and alcohol. The Mouthfeel is fuller in body with smooth carbonation. Overall this is a great beer....for sipping....not sessioning.

 348 characters

Photo of gcamparone
4.2/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22oz bottle into a snifter.

Pours deep brown body with cherry highlights. Small light tan head that reduces to leave little lacing and retention.

On the nose is heavy bourbon and vanilla, some chocolate and caramel.

On the tongue is very sweet milk chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, caramel, molasses, finish is lightly roasty. Mouthfeel is a little thin, low carbonation.

An enjoyable brew to sip, made for a great Easter morning treat.

 451 characters

Photo of JebBeerFish
4.1/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark Brown.

S: mild bourbon and vanilla.

T: no one flavor predominates; vanilla, bourbon, cocoa.

F: Average.

O: Good but not great. Barrel presence could be amped up
sinigicantly.

 186 characters

Photo of brentk56
4.34/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Arrives pitch black without much head; a bit of a swirl helps out and creates some dots of lacing

Smell: Dark chocolate and roasted malt, brown sugar, vanilla, coffee and Bourbon

Taste: Dark chocolate and roast, up front, with brown sugar and vanilla in the middle; a hint of dark fruit joins with the coffee and Bourbon, after the swallow

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with low to moderate carbonation

Overall: Glad to find this on tap while in Houston; a pretty impressive beer with the Bourbon deftly handled

 525 characters

Photo of OmahaKF
4.11/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Smell is bourbon, vanilla, cinnamon, burnt sugar, and a hint of graham cracker. Taste is vanilla, fair bit of booziness, cocoa powder, rich bourbon, and a hint of caramel. Much more like a stout than a porter. My first and only beer from Karbach and I'm really impressed!

 274 characters

Photo of HipCzech
4.4/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Serving: 22 oz bottle poured into a 9 oz Libby Embassy snifter. F.U.N. Series 007, 2013.

Appearance: Deep, dark, inky brown with a thick cap of tan foam.

Smell: Toffee, oak, vanilla and brandy soaked prunes.

Taste: Deeply malty, molasses, roasted grains, boozy fruitcake, vanilla and espresso bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Thick and creamy with moderate carbonation.

Overall: A rich, malty sipper. Nice booze and barrel notes while remaining mellow and balanced.

 460 characters

Photo of cavedave
4.37/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a thick looking black with a fine knit head of tan that only grudgingly kicks back to lasting, thick cap. Sheets of oily lace coat the glass. Beautiful.

Mmm, vanilla and dark caramel, coffee and dark chocolate, with light oak and bourbon notes make a truly delectable, full strength aroma.

Nice medium/full strength taste that captures a clean and balanced version of all the aroma flavors. Sip ends nicely semi-dry with lingering alcohol spice and light roasty bitter. It carries a good degree of sweetness that makes this super tasty

Easy drinking, medium bodied, yet nicely viscous, super clean flavor profile, medium carbonation with a finish that rocks a linger that stays clean and yummy.

Alcohol is super well hidden and this is just a delightful beer I highly recommend.

 792 characters

Photo of alexpcat13
4.8/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A: Nearly black, with just a twinge of deep brown. Minimal head

S: Rich coco, vanilla, bourbony aroma.

T: Dark chocolate, vanilla, dried/aged dates or possibly figs(even had a slight coconut... i might be alone in this one), finishes with a nice bourbony-firey-goodness

M: Heavy

O: Really excellent, would highly reccomend... probably the best porter i've had

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Photo of enrique_m
5/5  rDev +16%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

this is my favorite porter! it pours jet black with about a 1 inch of cinnamon colored head and very nice lacing. in the smell you get dark chocolate, vanilla, and fig. the taste is of roasted malts, dark chocolate, coffee, and a bit of sweetness from dark fruits like figs and dates. the feel is amazing on the tongue since it is the right amount of carbonation. and overall this is a tasty and well crafted brew!

 414 characters

Photo of Tommo
3.59/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

In a season full of rich big bourbon barrel beers, this falls well short of anything remarkable. I had this on draft 2 years ago in Dallas and thought it was nice (boulder, bitter, bourbon), however the new release is something pathetic

2015 bottle bought at central market in austin tx. Pours a brown liquid filling the cup with a dark, albeit not very dark, beer with very little head. it smells sweet and not very bourbony, and this is matched in the taste. The body is paper thin, and i get almost no barrel character. The cloying sweetness is in no way balanced by the booze or bitterness.


When a 4 pack of barrel aged legion is 16 dollars, this bomber for 14 is just not worth buying

 693 characters

Photo of Dope
4.36/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Lot 120115 I think. I assume that's Dec 1st?

A: Pitch-black pour with a mid-sized fizzy brown head. Soda-like head fizzes out fairly quickly. No sign of lacing or head retention.

S: Sweet caramel and chocolate. Some vanilla. Malty and inviting.

T: Super smooth caramel from the barrels up front. Lots of milk chocolate with a vanilla backing. Finish turns a little more semisweet chocolate with hints of toffee and oak and caramel. Long lingering bourbon finish with a hint of alcohol dryness.

M: Heavy, very soft and easy drinking.

O: Malty, creamy and smooth. Very, very nice bourbon barrel porter. Not big and roasty like a stout and not harsh like a lot of barrel-aged brews. Super smooth and drinkable. Really great package overall. A little sweet but I enjoy the sweeter spectrum of beers.

 802 characters

Photo of mdgogiants
4.48/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

First had at brewery and now got it in a bomber. Wow! Can stand up to other bourbon barrel aged beers from GI or anywhere else! Great bourbon taste and a very smooth, smoky feel. Has to be top beer this great Houston Craft brewer has made!

 243 characters

Photo of dga5030
4.76/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

I had this on tap at the brewery, and again from a bottle a few weeks later. It's dark and thick like a stout, and brilliantly brings together the complex flavors of being barrel-aged in a way that makes it sweet, but not boozy. I'd definitely seek this out in the future.

 272 characters

Photo of Rimbimhoot
4.49/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Very dark brown with a light brown head
S: Bourbon, sweet, brown sugar, cola, vanilla, dark chocolate
T: Bourbon, vanilla, brown sugar, caramel, molasses, oak, dark chocolate, light roast, dates
M: Creamy, medium
O: One of the best bourbon barrel porters I have ever had. Great balance

 294 characters

Photo of puck1225
4.21/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap into a snifter. Very dark, thin head, nice lacing. Dark fruit, caramel, and chocolate. Some coffee. Very enjoyable for the last beer of the evening.

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Bourbon Barrel Aged Hellfighter from Karbach Brewing Co.
4.31 out of 5 based on 502 ratings.
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