Bourbon Barrel Aged Kalamazoo Stout | Bell's Brewery, Inc.

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Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery, Inc.
Michigan, United States

Style: American Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Zaphog on 01-06-2014

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 7 | Ratings: 86
Photo of Stinkypuss
4.11/5  rDev +9.9%

Pours a dark brown almost black color with an off white head and plenty of lace. The aroma is boozy, chocolatey and big on bourbon. Smells like a hobo's breath after they have a morning mocha. Dry wood.

The taste is big on chocolate, wood, caramel apple, bourbon, a bit of yeast. Slight nutty tartness as this beer was aged in second-use barrels that held black note. Deep roast and booze.

Full bodied brew with a medium carbonation. Overall, this is a very solid beer.

 477 characters

Photo of Rifugium
3.37/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

On tap at Prohibition Taproom, Philly, PA.

Served in a tulip, solid black pour with a small collar of bubbles; minimal retention and lacing. In the nose, roasty malts, burnt bread, notes of dark fruits, wet wood, lacking any real bourbon qualities. Taste of dark malts, roasty and charred, light bourbon notes and neutral alcohol, with a lot of woodiness coming out, subtle dark fruits, and a weird moldy/astringent taste that turned into something like Play-Doh as it warmed. Medium body, slick mouthfeel, lower carbonation...left something to be desired. Strange that this didn't seem to work out so well, considering the base beer is really good. Usually a bourbon barrel doesn't detract from a beer, but that's what I felt happened here.

 742 characters

Photo of mothman
3.67/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Tan Head with some lace. Color is a dark brown, nearing black.

Flavor profile: Tons of vanilla and oak. The bourbon is very apparent. Chocolate, caramel, and cream. A slight amount of roasted malt. Apple cider somehow makes its way through.

Mouthfeel: Warming and smooth. Medium bodied. Ends dry.

Overall, a decent beer, but the base beer is too low in abv to withstand the barrels. I think they should have just used these barrels for expedition.

 450 characters

Photo of BeerDawgs
4.23/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at the Bells Brewery, Kalamazoo MI

A - black with 1 finger of head, lace left all over the glass

S - maple, molasses, bourbon, sweet

T - sweet, bourbon, well balanced, chocolate, roasted malts. Awesome

M - medium body, medium carb.

O - an amazimg stout enhanced with the bourbon barrel. Well done!

 310 characters

Photo of Bung
3.23/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Tap at the eccentric cafe. Looks about the same as the regular, near black with a thin layer of light tan head.

Aroma, barrel, dry tannic barrel. Some roast malt, chocafe, caramel.

Taste, bourbon seems to overwhelm the base beer here. Alcohol presence taste wise is unpleasant, fusally? Molasses, brown sugar and some roast malt and dark chocolates. Coffee has been overpowered.

Soliy medium body wise, low end carbonation wise. Drinks as well as it can for the barrel and alcohol presence. Abv just not very well hidden even though it is on the low side.

The subtlety excellent Kalamazoo stout is not improved by the barrel in this case. Felt the same way about the barrel aged batch 9000 which was highly acclaimed, so maybe it's just me.

 744 characters

Photo of BEERchitect
3.8/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Always a steadfast stout, Bell's Kalamazoo chases the taste buds with high roast and a malty-dry backbone. Tilting toward pithy and piney hop bitterness, the American stout is a welcome addition to the bourbon barrel.

Complex aromas and early taste use char to its advantage while weaving in grilled fruits of cherry, blackcurrant and red grape. Tangy and tawny, its dark austere matches its taste with burnt toast, fresh coffee grounds, bitter chocolate and nutty, woody undertones.

The middle palate really opens up its bourbon character as the dry stout underneath absorbs a plethora of alcohol flavor, wood spice; along with those thin caramels and vanillans. Its fruit character takes on tartness as there's little malt rebuttal to balance its strong coffee-type bitterness.

As its short malt sweetness and creamy body dissolves, the stout finishes with high tannin from several angles- roasted grain and wood spice leading the way. Kalamazoo then finishes with a sherry-like undertow while its powdery astringency and alcohol warmth dry the palate excessively.

While a highly intriguing and complex taste, worthy of every sip, the beer's dry inherent character barrel over-use tells me that the recipe is solid but the execution went a bit too far.

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Photo of barczar
3.79/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours an opaque onyx with a frothy tan head that dissipates into a thin layer of foam.

Aroma is dominated by vanilla and acetone. Notes of chocolate, light roast, and oak add intrigue.

Flavor reveals more acetone, mingled with tannic oak, finishing roasty and lightly charred. Thankfully, there's a chocolate sweetness throughout, along with nutty malt, to counter.

Body is a touch full, with low carbonation and light alcohol warmth.

The acetone is offputting, but the base chocolate flavors and non-acrid roast counter to make it enjoyable.

 546 characters

Bourbon Barrel Aged Kalamazoo Stout from Bell's Brewery, Inc.
3.74 out of 5 based on 86 ratings.
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