Volume # 1 | 4 Hands Brewing Co.

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Volume # 1Volume # 1

Brewed by:
4 Hands Brewing Co.
Missouri, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Imperial stout aged in whiskey barrels for 16 months with coffee and cacao nibs.

Added by JoEBoBpr on 08-03-2013

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Reviews: 24 | Ratings: 191
Photo of SLMObrew
4.92/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Awesome beer. Mouthful was a little lite. Not to thick. Color is nice and black. Light tan top. 4 hands brewery is in a good location. Close to the stadium and right by soulard. Which is where Mardi gra is. When I wen to the brewery it was after the release which no bottle were available for purchase. An it was not on tap. But lucky enough the guy behind the counter had some buddies up there he opened a bottle for to taste an being in the right place at the right time got a 2oz pour. But I do get to taste it on tap in Columbia,mo at 44 stone! Awesome place.

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4.81/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Wow! Two stage head off a hard pour. Drinks chocolate, vanilla then finishes with a strong coffee bitter. In that order! There is a very noticeable transition between the three big flavors. Great beer overall! ISO more!

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Photo of KCSerdy
4.7/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This beer surprised me. Opened it on a whim and was just blown away. Huge chocolate nose followed by chocolate taste with vanilla. The end is coffee and the barrel balances it all out. I want more of this now but hence, I live in CO. ISO

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Photo of JackieAnton
4.7/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Pours unexpectedly light, not opaque as expected with a tan head. Nose is mostly chocolate. Taste follows with chocolate and bourbon and light coffee. Just love it. Pretty sweet! Very little roasty bitterness. Wow. Didn't think this could even come close to the only other barrel aged 4 Hands beer I've had (Madagascar) but this really stands up. Congrats 4 Hands for being #1 and #2 on my list of favorite stouts/porters.

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Photo of yesterdayfaraway
4.56/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pitch black and big bourbon smell. Love the smell!!!
Smooth chocolate and smooth bourbon, fantastic. This has been aged almost a year and has improved. Pretty thick, better than most.
I will get it again, worth seeking out for sure.

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Photo of SadMachine
4.56/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes from 9/5/14

A- Pours pitch black, and very thick, with a thin khaki head that recedes to a collar. Thick, sticky lacing remains on the glass. Alcohol legs appear when swirled.

S- The aroma itself is intoxicating! Wonderful spicy whiskey in the forefront, followed by deep rich layers of chocolate and vanilla. The fudgy chocolate notes play so well off the spicy/boozy notes. The oak notes, slight char, and vanilla all work well together. Some undertones of overripe dark fruits, primarily fig, come through as well.

T- There is a whole lot of whiskey going on. There is also an abundance of roasty notes that weren't as prevalent in the nose. The chocolate and vanilla aren't as noticeable, but still very much there. Spice and oak round this out nicely.

M- The mouth feel is medium to thick, moderately boozy, and pretty dry, with light carbonation.

O- This is an outstanding barrel aged stout. The chocolate and coffee may have been more prevalent when it was fresh, but this is still world class!

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
4.56/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a tulip glass from a 22oz bottle.

Pours a pitch black liquid. Not as viscous as expected. There is a thin light tan head that forms that is pretty dense but recedes quickly. Retention is low with the head going down to a thin film quickly.

Aroma is delicious. Chocolate biscotti notes. Yum. Cocoa bitterness and sweetness balanced out by some nice coffee roast. In fact both aromas balance each other out very well. These notes are underlain by a nice slight caramel sweetness from the barrels. Nice vanilla notes. Smells exactly like a chocolate cake with some tiramisu qualities. Slight dark fruit notes on the back end but very oaty and grainy. Delicious nose.

Flavor is pretty amazing. Starts off with nice coca notes. Dark chocolate bitterness; but that is balanced by a more cocoa powder milk chocolate sweetness. Notes of oat. ALmost like an oatmeal stout. THe grain is really present and quite nice. The cocoa notes are balanced out and accentuated by some nice coffee roast mild espresso and fresh coffee bean notes lend the brew a nice mocha appeal to it. Then come the whiskey notes. Caramel and vanilla notes with some mild molasses. Definitely not overwhelming. There is a good balance between the sweeter barrel notes and the woodier oak notes. This brew is delicious an all the flavor shine on their own but are so well blended. Those 16 mo in the barrel did it well. Mouthfeel is on the lighter side, could be a bit heavier but its still delicious. Nice cocoa bitterness to finish.

Ok. 4 Hands hit it out with this BA offering. The cocoa and coffee are blended perfectly. Nice Mocha notes rule the palette and stick around for a while in one way or another. You can tell this beer was brewed for the barrel. (Slow clap)

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Photo of KevSal
4.55/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow what a great beer! I had Madagascar and while I liked it I didn't think it was amazing. This beer is amazing, I fact I enjoy the huge vanilla notes in this one better. This is a must try, I hope it's released annually.

Plus the label is awesome!

edit: this review was for the first release

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Photo of strandm
4.55/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Draft at three kings. Minimal head, thin. Pitch black. Rich smell with sweet bourbon, vanilla. Flavors of bourbon, oak, vanilla, mild caramel and sweetness, well balanced. Feel is slightly thin, but adequate. Very good overall - improves as it warms. Prefer bcbs, cbs, kbs, but on par with barrel-aged Rasputin and barrel aged narwhal

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Photo of drmcleod10
4.48/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Served into 8oz snifter at Nightmare Before Christmas event

A - Dark pour just like every stout I had this day. 1/4 inch foam light mocha head

S - Coffee, dark chocolate, vanilla and malt

T - Taste is much of the same.. By far and large 4 hands best beer to date. Milk chocolate, vanilla, coffee roasted malts

M - medium to heavy bodied creamy smith and goodness

O - Definitely their best beer

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Photo of leroybrown10
4.47/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours a rich deep deep brown, almost black with a creamy looking 1 inch tan head. Minimal lacing.

Nose of bourbon and chocolate with undertones of coffee, vanilla and roasted malt. I expected more coffee in the nose.

Tastes of smooth bourbon with some chocolate and vanilla. Again, undertones of coffee but less than expected. Mild roasted malt flavors. Has a sweetness I'd expect more of a milk stout than an imperial stout. Flavors are very balanced with nothing overpowering the others.

Rich creamy mouth feel. Not as thick as many imperial stouts I've had.

Overall, an excellent beer. Very smooth and tremendous balance in the various flavors. I was expecting more coffee in both the aroma and the flavor. 1 order of magnitude of coffee more would probably take this from a great beer to an elite beer.

Poured into a Perennial Tulip from a 22oz bottle. Date on the bottle merely says 2014. I believe this is the 2nd batch released.

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Photo of rodkin
4.32/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Generous pour at Three Kings. Thanks Jay!

Pour is dark dark black, small light mocha head, on the thicker side of medium-bodied.

Smell is heavy roasted coffee, dark chocolate, vanilla, hint of spice, roasted malts.

Taste was really heavy on bitter, french roast, really dark unsweetened cocoa, a hint of milk chocolate, a little bit of spice from the barrel. Surprisingly low barrel presence. It definitely enhanced, but did not at any point overtake the whole beer. Nice mocha flavor, but I would have appreciated just a hint more sweetness, as this pretty heavy on the roasted notes.

Mouthfeel is medium-thick, chewy, low carbonation. Really great for the style.

Wow, 4 Hands really nailed it with this one. Got the adjuncts just right, great flavors, perfect balance. Wish I had a bottle to cellar.

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Photo of Gotti311
4.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This was probably my most anticipate brew to try at Great Taste of the Midwest. The other caveat that I want to throw in is that 4 Hands was my favorite brewery of the day. Vol 1 was a tiny bit of a let down. The nose was wonderful, I think the cocoa nibs really brought the nose to life. The mouth feel was pretty thin and the flavors just had not come together. The flavors felt pretty disjointed to me, maybe some time will bring this one together, but it isn't there right now.

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Photo of Rifugium
4.19/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This was a tasty surprise. Thick brown-black pour, typical stout look, with a small tan head. Nice roasty aroma, dark malts, dark chocolate, dark coffee, and something kind of fruity in there too, almost candy-like, but in a good way. Similar taste, rich bourbon notes coming through nicely, complimenting all the dark goodies. Again, some unexpected sweetness in there, almost like Circus Peanuts or something. Unusual but it worked. Smooth mouthfeel, medium-full body, a good drinker overall. I haven't had much from this brewery, but so far, no clunkers.

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Photo of Bosoxfan20
4.16/5  rDev -1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Comes off looking a little thin, but the aroma is killer- huge vanilla, oak, charred malts. Taste follows very well. Body could use a boost, but it's minor. Fantastic barrel notes.very well done.

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Photo of Gtwreck45
4.14/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Aged just under a year, poured from 22oz bottle into snifter.

L: Jet black with slight brown at the edges. Little head and it disappeared fast, although that's to be expected with a bit of aging
S: Dominated by chocolate syrup, with a touch of wine-like or dark fruit scent. The coffee is there if you are looking for it, but cocoa was definitely dominant
T: more chocolate, although that's likely my nose telling me what I will taste. Some vanilla and licorice, with an oaky finish
F: full feeling with a lingering thickness.
O: quality stout, although surprisingly little whiskey considering the length of aging. While I enjoyed it and would gladly drink again, not sure I'd buy it again at its price point ($17/22oz)

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Photo of jlindros
4.1/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Another thanks to rudzud for beer.

Nice mocha colored thick rich creamy 1/2 finger head, fades at a med pace with nice lacing, pitch black color.

Nose is awesome even from afar, lots of whisky and cocoa, lots of nice dark choc and cocoa, little biscuit wafer candy bar, little caramel too, and little fluffy nougat marshmallow. Mild sweet whisky and little barrel note, little coffee, little earthy dusty coffee but seems to have died out a bit, even a bit fudgey.

Taste is a little light, lots of fudge and dark choc, little cocoa, mild vanilla barrel too, into little caramel but very light. Plenty of whisky and quite hot booze, fairly boozy with alcohol taste. Some coconut coming through nicely, cookie dough and choc, mild earthy nutty coffee but not a ton. Finish is fair bitterness, lots more cocoa and cookie, fudge and vanilla, mild coffee and more hot whisky lingering.

Mouth is med to heavier bod, lighter carb, chewy fudgey, lots of hot booze.

Overall mixed, very nice base beer but that hot booze and whisky cuts right through it and makes it though to drink. Coffee is a but light too. But not too bad.

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Photo of rudzud
4.1/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Shared with JLindros.

A - Poured into a Kate the Great tulip a nice dark brown black hue with a thin mocha head that fades to leave light lacing and nice wisps.

S - Aromas of whiskey, cocoa nibs, coffee is faint. Not getting much barrel, pretty straight forward.

T - Taste is loads of whiskey, loads of it, tons of chocolate, faint coffee on the finish. The whiskey is quite prominent. Light barrel notes faint coconut, faint coffee on the finish. Very hot whiskey.

M - Mouthfeel is not nearly as thick and chewy as I'd like. Almost thin. Super boozy.

O - Overall this beer was a bit disappointing, smelled nice, looked good, but just way too boozy, really a shame.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.97/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

650 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Black. Medium khaki head. Wispy surface and a thin collar.

Smell - Vanilla. Lots of vanilla. A bit of whiskey. Milk chocolate.

Taste - Whiskey much more prominent. Also some coffee, but it isn't that strong. A little acidic on the coffee. Chocolate is nice. Boozy finish and a touch of roasty bitterness.

Mouthfeel - Medium heavy. Sharp booziness. Medium carbonation.

Overall - Lots of chocolate as it warms. I'm amazed there's no vanilla added to this.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.94/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Bottle pour at Woodshop 8 held at The Hermosillo in Los Angeles, CA.

Pours an almost opaque super dark brown with a foamy beige head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, bourbon, and wood aromas. Taste is much the same with cocoa and bourbon flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roasty bitterness and an alcohol kick on the palate with each sip. This beer has a low level of carbonation with an almost flat mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that is tasty and easy to drink.

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Photo of Franziskaner
3.88/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Moderately black and murky so no light will seep through this. There's a finger of beige around the rim. The aroma is dominated by sweet bourbon notes. The bitterness of the coffee tones down that sweetness slightly. The flavor is an oddly intense yet balanced beer. The sweet bourbon is held in check by the chocolate and coffee. The mouth is thick and viscous.

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Photo of Stevedore
3.82/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

650ml bottle with about one year of age. Poured into a Cigar City snifter 9/5/2014.

A- Dark brown body, quite dark and gets close to pitch black. Minimal head. No lacing. [3.5]

S- Whiskey, cocoa, dark chocolate, whiskey. Not a lot of coffee but this is certainly a whiskey forward beer. Smells quite good, if a bit of a whiskey bomb. [4]

F- Seems to be bourbon as the whiskey flavour is fairly smoky. Milk chocolate, a bit of bitter black coffee, a small amount of roast malts. As in the nose, quite whiskey forward, very little coffee. Makes sense as this bottle is a bit older than a year. Whiskey-forward beers aren't quite my thing, unfortunately. [3.75]

M- Medium bodied, smooth and silky. Lower in carbonation as expected. Runs a bit hot, surprisingly given its age. [4]

O- Not a bad imperial stout, I think the coffee would have added a welcome dimension to this beer. As it is, it's very whiskey-heavy and that would satisfy certain beer drinkers, but it just doesn't quite do it for me. [3.75]

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Photo of Way2drunk
3.43/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

It was ok! Lacked a lot of the flavor profiles promised on the bottle. Coffee taste with whiskey smell, but nothing distinctive or memorable hold to this beer. I could very easily give it a pass or play depending on the day. Way to many exceptional beers to get caught up with this one. Anything other that jus OK! Is just a lie.

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Photo of pagriley
3.35/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Hot and boozy with thin body. Lacking any real coffee or chocolate notes. Bourbon was harsh and over-done. One of the lesser BA stouts I have had - not worth trying

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Volume # 1 from 4 Hands Brewing Co.
4.2 out of 5 based on 191 ratings.
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