Bare Knuckle Stout | Anheuser-Busch

172 Reviews
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Bare Knuckle StoutBare Knuckle Stout

Brewed by:
Missouri, United States

Style: Irish Dry Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by scottum on 03-05-2003

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 172 | Ratings: 199
Photo of champ103
1.9/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

A: Pours a dark brown with red highlights around the edges. A minimal beige head forms, and recedes in an instant. No lace.
S: Old and musky coffee, a touch of chocolate. Some faint sweet malt and grain.
T: Similar to the nose. Tastes like coffee that has been sitting around for an hour. A light malty sweetness and grain.
M/D: No body at all, and a dead lifeless carbonation. Thin and watery. I guess its drinkable, in the since that water is drinkable.

I remember back in college, I use to drink this a lot. My local bar had dollar imperial pint nights of this. I thought it was great to drink an American version of Guinness. I had it again on a recent trip back, and this is just bad. Its like AB tried to make a nitro-type beer, but with CO2. Never again will I drink this.

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Photo of stingrayvr6
1.66/5  rDev -40.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1.5

Saw this on tap at a local place, never heard of it so I tried it. Apparently that was something no one else had done for some time as it was very stale and metallic tasting. CArbonation was almost nonexistent, smelled pretty much like roasted grain/coffee. Tasted the same, with some sweet, chocolatey notes. Resembled some wierd, flat soda. Left it on a table. I would have been better off with one of the $2 Miller Lights.

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Photo of superdedooperboy
3.11/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served on-tap at The Pizza Joint in Evans, GA.

Very dark, nearly opaque in appearance, with a tall, creamy light tan pillow of foam that recedes slowly and shows nice sheet-like lacing.

Nose is mostly lacking, with a hint of roastiness and a bit of light bready malt background.

Medium-bodied, with nearly no carbonation -- it's virtually flat. Flavors are as lackluster as the nose suggests, with just a hint of roasted malt character combined with a bit of cloying molasses that fails to be balanced by the slight touch of herbal hops that show themselves just before the dry, grainy finish.

Anheuser-Busch has put out some pretty decent craft-style beers, but Bare Knuckle Stout is not one of them. I had put off trying this one for a long time, and won't be ordering it again.

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Photo of chaunur
2.18/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Had this after skiing last night, they were out of Guiness so we tried this. Solid black with a 1/2" light tan head. The head quickly vanished and wasn't the creamy head I associate with stouts. Little smell, a hint of burnt malts and a trace of coffee. Tasted like they had taken 6 oz of Guinness and watered down with 6 oz of water. You could tell it was supposed to be a stout....but it wasn't. Thin and watery on the palette. I'd avoid

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Photo of supercolter
3.29/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance is great. I like that it pours like chocolate milk. Thick and creamy head. Smell is rather disappointing. Not a lot going on. In fact, I don't have much of anythign Taste is better, dry coffee and a bit of chocolate. Mouthfeel is a nice, heavy body. Drinkability suffers because, it drinks like milk.

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Photo of magictrokini
2.84/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Tap. Looks really good, dark brown with creamy lighter brown head. Faint aroma of cocoa, but the corny base creeps through. Thin Guinness-like taste. Cocoa, astringent malt, and metal. Tastes like someone put artificial flavoring in carbonated water. However, my final verdict is not awful.

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Photo of 1fastz28
3.44/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

got this on draft at a st.louis institution, helen fitzgeralds. the color is just a very very deep black color and a big frothy off white head smell is somewhat weak light coffee and roasted malt. taste is ok but has a little wateryness to it and not as flavorful as some other stouts. mouthfeel is good though. decent overall

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Photo of LordofTime25
2.91/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Beer was a dark brown almost black with a creamy tan head that stay till beer is done nd leaves lacing.

There is not much smell to this brew maybe a faint burnt sugar smell.

This is not a very strong flavord beer, but I do detect coffee and a banana flavor. Also a chocalate bitterness on the finish.

A medium body with a low carbonation so drinks fairly smooth for a stout.

Worth a try, but there are alot better stouts out there.

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Photo of MTNboy
2.79/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance- Opaque, very dark not much on bubbles in the body for a beer that I had on tap. Thick creamy head that tuned into thick creamy lace with a whole lot of staying power.

Smell- Mild for the most part I could not smell much of anything but a faint burnt toffee smell.

Taste- Not bad it was a little weaker than I remembered but alright a little bit of caramel malt with a little bitter chocolate aftertaste.

Mouthfeel- Thick and very creamy.

Drinkability- It was a little weak for my taste but it wasn't bad either.

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Photo of kinger
2.85/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Ordered a couple of these drafts at the pub, didn't find out until just now that this is brewed by Anheuser-Busch. This was a rather decent dry stout and it certainly has the right qualities. Aroma was a bit faint but pleasant nonetheless. Beer was very dark in the pint glass with a thin creamy tan head, could have been thicker. Medium lacing which is a bonus. Mouthfeel is borderline thin for a stout but not too far off, finish is extremely smooth and dry nicely done. The flavor is good, could have a touch more maltiness to it, not complex at all but enjoyable and easily drinkable. I gotta give some kudos to A-B for actually putting a decent brew on the market.

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Photo of clintone
2.69/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Now that I find out this is an AB, I am a little more impressed, it was advertised to me as a micro craft brew. It isn't bad but definitely not great. I had it on tap so it was poured pretty poorly, but had an ok head that laced well and looked pretty creamy. Smell was virtually non-existent. Taste was fairly average, somewhat creamy, nothing special, not a whole lot of flavor. Mouthfeel was yet again just average, decently creamy and smooth, but the lack of taste was pretty evident. I could probably drink a couple, but I wouldn't pay $4 for one ever again.

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Photo of soupyman10
2.17/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I dunno, cause the appearance isn't so bad, but I could tell this one was a mess. Nose is basically non-existent, and taste is just a bitter, "roasted" (is that what that is?) mess. Body's okay, but it's not going to do great wonders in terms of making this one drinkable in any way. Don't waste your time here.

PS. I obviously was not aware that this was AB before I delved in.

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Photo of ViveLaChouffe
2.56/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Tried this for the first time at Stout's Irish Pub in Atlanta...

Pours black with a huge creamy white head. Say what you will about the rest of the beer but it looks great. The smell is very lightly roasty and bitter.

The flavor in very atringent. The pleasant creamy bitterness of the big dry stouts is ruined by an unpleasant atringency. Mouth is very creamy and smooth. But the total flavor is not that great. I'll take a pass on this in the future but it's not terrible.

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Photo of HardcoreKeith
3.86/5  rDev +39.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

It's clear what AB is trying to do with this one, and I actually think they've done a really good job. I have one or two of these on tap at Sea World's hospitality house each time we go.

Nice cascading nitro effect which settles into a creamy tan head. The froth stays through until the end. The smell is a hint of coffee. Taste is smooth, creamy, and a little roasty. There's a bit more hop bitterness here than in Guinness, surprisingly, but lacking the sour note. It works for me.

The first time I tried this I think I may have actually had it on CO2 and wasn't impressed. If you get it fresh on nitro, though, I think you'll find it pleasant and an good example of a nitro draught Irish stout.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
1.91/5  rDev -31%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

I am normally partial to stouts and porters, but this is an exception. It looks nice coming out of the keg (had this at the Mensa AG in Denver), dark sable-brown with a decent head. Aroma, however, is rather weak, albeit typical of a stout. Flavor is rather insipid - it tastes like watered-down coffee with just a little bit of an alcohol zing. Texture is smooth but lifeless. Forget this one.

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Photo of AmishT
2.35/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

A - Dark ruby. Close to black, but it isn't opaque, which, from what I understand, is a bit of an anomaly compared to other Irish stouts. Had it on nitro-tap, so it had the whole cascading "show" going on which is pretty cool. Perfect, one-finger creamy off-white head that lasted nearly the entire time I was drinking it. Had lots of stick lacing too. Can't say I didn't enjoy the appearance.

S - All I could smell was a sweet fruitiness. This kind of unsettles me, given the fact that this is supposed to be an Irish Dry Stout. No roasted malts or barley, no hint of coffee or chocolate anywhere. It was a pretty strong aroma, so at least there's that.

T - The first sip I took, I thought I got a big mouthful of the head, because all I tasted was carbonation and bitterness. I may have gotten a big mouthful of the head during that first sip; however, the flavor did not really improve from there on. Once again, that roasty character that dry stouts are supposed to have was nowhere to be found.

M - Light bodied, but very watery mouthfeel. No flavor to be found. Very clean finish, but, once again, this is not expected from the style.

D - I'd be lying if I didn't think this was a drinkable beer. The taste isn't repugnant; it's just nonexistant. Very light bodied; the more I drank of it, the easier it seemed to go down. At least this is somewhat in character for Irish Dry Stouts.

Overall, really the only thing that needs to be said is that this is a poor example of the style trying to be emulated

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Photo of jdoolin
1.76/5  rDev -36.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

Presentation - served on tap in a tumbler pint

Appearance - Not quite black, one finger of a frothy, white head.

Aroma - Not much. Some hints of coffee and roasted malt and maybe a whisper of hops.

Taste and Mouthfeel - Complete and utter disappointment. I've never had a stout that's more watery than this one. None of the creamy mouthfeel one would expect from an Irish Dry Stout, let alone served on nitro. The flavor was like somebody mixed Guinness or Beamish with water. Like half and half. Just hints of roasted malt flavor, some sweetness up front and a balanced bitterness.

Notes - I give AB's craft attempts a chance, but this one was utter failure.

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Photo of DarkerTheBetter
3.93/5  rDev +41.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer came in a Weizen Glass at the Jet Rock Bar at Philly International. Looked rather nice. It had the color of a really dark cola with a cream white film floating on top and managed to stick around 'till the end.

Smelled quite light, of toasty coffee and caramel with a dry ashy hop and a hint of watermelon.

Tasted light too, but tasty. There's a light toasty bread and grain, dry caramel with a sweet, smooth and smoky finish that left my mouth dry and clean.

Felt light and dry with a subdued carbonation hiding in the distance.

Nice. Keep it up.

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Photo of Kegatron
2.12/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3

Served on tap at Grogan's Pub inside Busch Gardens Williamsburg.

Pours a dark brown with at least 2 fingers of thick, creamy tan head that left thick swatches of lace down the sides of the cup. The aroma is nearly non-existant with some barely there notes of roasted barly and chocolate.

The taste is a little stronger than the aroma but not by much. Notes of roasted malt and some chocolate sweetness that finishes with some light bitter hoppiness. The mouthfeel is way more thin and watery than any beer from this style has any right to be. It's almost like drinking roasted water.

Well, this shot at a Guiness clone is about as dark as you can get for an A/B product, but unfortunately that's not saying a lot. This went down the hatch easy enough but for anyone looking to try a Stout with any kind of fortitude should definitely give this one a pass.

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Photo of Hoagie1973
2.94/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had this on tap at the Anheuser-Busch Brewmasters Club at Sea World, Orlando. Tap handle was an awesome sculpture of an old-timey boxer from the waist up.

Poured a very dark brown (like a much darker Brown Ale) with a nice creamy bubbleless head. Great retention and nice sheet lacing.

Aroma was average, smelled more like a Bud than a stout.

Flavor had an unmistakable AB quality. Like Budweiser and Guinness had a love child. Nicely hopped (especially for an AB beer).

Mouthfeel was smooth and creamy. A little thin, but there was some light carbonation.

An obvious attempt at cloning Guinness. Not entirely successful, but not too bad. I'd buy a pint over a lot of other beers, but I wouldn't keep it in my fridge.

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Photo of auxiliary
3.13/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

appearance - Black with a creamy head.

smell - Roasted grains and malts here.

taste - Watery, light, roasted grains.

mouthfeel -Light body, creamy.

drinkability - AB is on to something, needs some work, but I see how they are trying to get into craft beer. Just why is all there stuff watery and light? Spend some money on good stuff.

On tap at East Providence Lanes on Newport Ave, RI.

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Photo of pubscout
3.15/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A very drinkable stout. Surprising that it hails from AB, but kudos to them for doing it. I ordered it with Virginia Ham and eggs for breakfast. The pairing worked fine for me. Mackeson's Triple X it ain't, but neither are most stouts.

Watching it being drawn, its bubble action reminded me of the way Guinness draws from a nitro-tap or with a widget in the can. In all, while i might not go out of my way to get it, I would certainly consider it wherever it was on tap. I enjoyed it.

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Photo of dnichols
1.73/5  rDev -37.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

I was served a pint of this brew at Sam's Bar in Kennewick, Washington.

A: It poured a dark black body with a head that barely reached half a finger and looked a dirty beige. The head quickly disappeared leaving a very little lacing.

S: It had an overwhelming bitter and sour aroma that nearly blocked all other smells. There was a hint of coffee.

T: It presented a tangy bitterness that turned sour in the aftertaste. There was a bite to the bitterness that tasted like the bottom of a coffee pot that had been allowed to linger on the stove for far too many hours. It was a foul tasting brew that I could not tolerate after a few sips...I failed me.

M: It was thin and light bodied with a sour aftertaste.

D: This beer is nearly undrinkable. It was close to a Bud with food coloring. I will never order this beer again.

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Photo of osi
2.67/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

A - Poured just like a normal stout, having to wait for the color to set in. After set in, the head remained while it looked dark chocolate brown.

S - Surprisingly not much smell emitted the thick brew. With a good pull you can inhale a tad scent of malts.

T - Right off the bat the taste of coffee and dark malts and finishes slightly bitter.

M - Not as think as I expected. I consider it to be a light stout.

D - Maybe good for a dessert. I would not drink this everday. It is like consuming another meal after having one glass.

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Photo of orangemoustache
3.14/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3






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Bare Knuckle Stout from Anheuser-Busch
2.77 out of 5 based on 199 ratings.
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