Traverse City Whiskey Barrel-Aged 30th Anniversary Ale | Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store

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3 Ratings

Brewed by:
Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store
Michigan, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 14.10%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by kojevergas on 01-02-2017

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Ratings: 3 |  Reviews: 1
Photo of loganburgh
4.33/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Gtg642
4.5/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of kojevergas
3.49/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-draught @ Barcade Brooklyn. I had to confirm this wasn't just Bell's Traverse City Whiskey BA porter since I'd never heard of this and couldn't find reference to it online.

"Russian imperial Stout Brewed with Polaris hops and aged on bourbon barrels."

$8/10oz draught pour.

A: No head when served. Predictably, the body is an opaque black.

AROMA: Chewy and leathery, hitting bourbon tones wonderfully. Hints of vanilla and toasted coconut. Dark malts. Specialty chocolate malts. I detect genuine vanilla bean; either it was used or the bourbon is just that fucking evocative.

No roast (unfortunately), no hops (appropriately), no off-notes.

Suggests a gorgeous stout with great bourbon barrel tones and superb balance. I can't wait to try it.

TASTE & TEXTURE: Amazing vanilla presence, evoking genuine vanilla bean. Bourbon accentuates the vanilla with undertones of toasted coconut and wood-derived vanillin. Chocolate malt and dark malts comprised the simple malt backbone; roasted barley would be a welcome addition.

Never betrays its high ABV. Has a porter-like smoothness and wetness. Not silky or soft or creamy, but approachable. Doesn't drag on the palate at all.

The barrel aging was very effective; it's great. I just wish the base was there as well. A simple base combined with a delightfully well accomplished barrel character makes for a complex beer generally speaking, but you've got to.go bigger when you're brewing one of the most intricate (at its best) styles currently in existence.

The coconut is subtly handled and the vanilla is lovely, but why isn't the base throwing anything into the pot?

OVERALL: Terrific bourbon barrel execution; mediocre base. Bell's again delivers, but the result is not amongst the finest expressions of the style (even in terms of Bell's' own lineup). Drinkable for it's hardly noticeable ABV. Well worth trying once, but not world class fare. If only the base had been better...

High B- (3.49) / WORTHY

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Traverse City Whiskey Barrel-Aged 30th Anniversary Ale from Bell's Brewery - Eccentric Café & General Store
Beer rating: 4.11 out of 5 with 3 ratings