[BANISHED] Tough Love
Crux Fermentation Project

[BANISHED] Tough Love[BANISHED] Tough Love
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Crux Fermentation Project
Oregon, United States
Russian Imperial Stout
Ranked #145
Ranked #2,286
4.24 | pDev: 9.43%
Feb 22, 2023
May 29, 2013
[BANISHED] Tough Love[BANISHED] Tough Love
Notes: Bourbon Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout
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Photo of mr-e
Reviewed by mr-e from Washington

4.16/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Look: it looks pretty yummy. Pours almost black. Opaque. The head is light mocha brown and lasts a while. Lotsa lacing.

Smell: smells like bourbon, coffee, and dark chocolate to me. I like it.

Taste: chocolatey and very bourbon-y. It leaves a fairly sudden, quite bitter aftertaste in my mouth that I don't necessarily adore.

Feel: i'm kind of new at reviewing beer. When I think of "feel," I think of carbonation. That's the only thing I really feel. This beer is a bit more carbonated than most, which I like. Tingly. Warming.

Overall: This beer is perfect for a sipper on a cold winter day. It's got a very bold, very intense flavor that I like. My only complaint is the aftertaste.
Feb 22, 2023
Photo of colts9016
Reviewed by colts9016 from Idaho

3.83/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Name: Banished Tough Love
Brewery: Crux Fermentation
Style: RIS
ABV: 14%
Date: 10/10/2022
I am not sure what to expect from this beer. I picked this up last year and kept it in the fridge. Using a tulip glass, I served it at 50 degrees. A frothy and creamy two-fingered head was created from the pour. The somewhat quick dissipation left lots of lacing on the glass. Charting the color of the beer around SRM 32, dark brown nearly black with a rusty brown hue. The appearance overall is above average for this style.
Nosing the glass, I smell bourbon, oak, vanilla, chocolate, caramel, burnt sugar, molasses, char, smokiness, raisins, figs, toasted bread crumbs, bready, alcohol, floral esters, and earthiness.
I taste bourbon, oak, vanilla, chocolate, caramel, burnt sugar, leather, molasses, char, smokiness, soy sauce, Maillard, raisins, figs, bready, toasted bread crumbs, floral esters, and earthiness with a touch herbal.
The mouthfeel is dry and somewhat astringent, and hot. The body is heavy, light carbonation, and a lingering finish.
This beer has a lot of Maillard and soy sauce. The dark roasted malts is a bit too much for my palate. Hoppiness in the beer is a bit firmer then I would prefer. I am not a huge fan of this beer.
Jan 15, 2023
Photo of Ant-B
Reviewed by Ant-B

4.41/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5
2021 vintage in 500ml bottle. Poured into a Libbey glass. Fridge temp.

Nose - strong bourbon and chocolate, mild toffee and caramel. Faint brown sugar and anise.

Palate - spun sugar and molasses, relaxes to a nice gingersnap or browned butter note. Long finish

Negative note - at 13.5% ABV I felt this was a bit heavy on carbonation. Next tasting I'll leave it in the glass for an hour to settle. Much too spritzy out of the bottle.
Good stuff! I'll be stocking up in this one.
Aug 28, 2022
Rated: 4.14 by smithj4 from New York

Jan 24, 2022
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Reviewed by Beersnake1 from California

3.9/5  rDev -8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Poured at fridge temp. Pours black with a good amount of light brown head. Sticks around for a while. Nose is chocolate, bourbon, fudge, dark fruit, and a bit of vanilla. Taste is nice. Lots of roasted malts (bitter) that really wasn't there on the nose. That's definitely the dominant taste here. A bit of pepper spice, dark chocolate, burnt toffee, and leather. Dark cherries, raisins, and an earthy note. Not my favorite, but quite good. Mouthfeel is medium bodied. Overall, a good beer.
Dec 29, 2021
Rated: 4.2 by Scotchboy from Idaho

Sep 08, 2021
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Reviewed by draheim from Washington

4.19/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
500mL bottle (2020) into a tulip. Pours a deep brownish black with a nice khaki head that settles to a respectable layer of film, leaving behind some patchy lace.

Aroma is a blend of dark roasted malt and bitter chocolate/cocoa. A touch of booze.

Taste is likewise chocolatey with some espresso and a more pronounced barrel presence. Some caramel and stone fruits in there too. Nice balance between bitter and sweet. As it warms it becomes increasingly clear what a solid, well-built beer this is.

Mouthfeel is about right—beer has good presence without being heavy. Smooth and creamy on the palate. Warming as it goes down.

Overall a excellent, understated BA imperial stout from a brewery I don’t tend to associate with bigger beers. Very nice.
May 20, 2021
Photo of erickc
Rated by erickc from Washington

4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Had on tap while socially distant at Special Brews Lynnwood, WA
Mar 26, 2021
Photo of Captain69
Reviewed by Captain69 from Illinois

3.65/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
this is listed as retired but the one i had was listed as 2020 banished series bottled 10/30/20= great barre; aged stout rich malty taste - drink slow to appreciate (14%)
Mar 16, 2021
Rated: 4.27 by wisegreensoul from Idaho

Mar 06, 2021
Rated: 5 by AshBlackstone from Florida

Dec 18, 2020
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Reviewed by DefenCorps from Oregon

4.26/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
Crowler from Uptown Market. 2016 rye barrel release.

Jet black with a dense, dark brown head that falls off to a ring leaving little lacing, this looks solid. The nose is immediately rich with dark fruit, raisins, brandy, dark chocolate,a warming heat,vanilla, a touch of coconut. Excellent balance and integration here. The palate opens with a great blend of rich yet prominent bitterness, dark chocolate and burnt caramel like, with vanilla and a little coconut. Lots of dark fruit, with dark raisins and a touch of prune on the mid-palate. The rye barrel character really comes thru here, spicy and warm with that distinct rye whiskey flavor. Pleasantly warming boozy heat. Full in body, softly carbonated. This beer finishes bittersweet with lingering cocoa, rye and vanilla.
Dec 12, 2020
Photo of Limazulu
Reviewed by Limazulu from Idaho

4.55/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5
2019 vintage in a Belgian tulip, first at fridge temp and then allowed to warm to room temp
A-dark mahogany to matte black, no light penetration, cappuccino foam-like head
S-molasses-forward, a little barrel, dark fruits
T-still molasses-forward, figs, vanilla, brown sugar, some boozy heat. Became richer and sweeter as it warmed. Still below average sweet and above-average bitter.
M-Medium body, easier drinking than your average RIS. Finishes dry.
O-The few BA ratings since the 2019 release are higher than prior years. I think the 2019 when allowed to cellar for a year will get even higher ratings.
Nov 15, 2020
Rated: 4.33 by jmh21 from Minnesota

Jun 29, 2020
Rated: 4.41 by JamieDuncan from Maryland

Mar 31, 2020
Rated: 4.5 by 1971bernat from Virginia

Mar 26, 2020
Rated: 4.25 by mmilyko from Nevada

Mar 20, 2020
Rated: 3.77 by rfreed from Washington

Mar 14, 2020
Rated: 4.42 by bigpoppa67 from Wisconsin

Jan 05, 2020
Rated: 3.75 by BerryKumquat from California

Dec 25, 2019
Rated: 4.5 by BEER88 from North Carolina

Dec 09, 2019
Photo of mintzmeet
Reviewed by mintzmeet from Washington

4.61/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75
2019 Banished Series. Delicious barrel-aged imperial stout. I drank this right away, as opposed to waiting 1-3 years as recommended. Very sweet. Creamy but then also salty. Deep frothiness. Eye-watering. Got harder to drink as it went on, but that's because of the 11.5% abv. Would be good to share it with a friend. Smells like a cast iron pot of molten bakers chocolate.
Dec 07, 2019
Photo of StonedTrippin
Reviewed by StonedTrippin from Colorado

4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
2016 vintage here drinking just a little bit past its prime, some slight oxidation creeping in, but overall its held up pretty well in the keg over time and is still a pleasure to enjoy. its got some cool nuance to it, looks of barrel and booze. matte black with hints of black licorice, smoke, raisin cookie, and bakers chocolate, less sweet than a lot of these are, even with this much whiskey in the mix, warming vanilla, honey, and oak all through it too. its just an ever so slight astringency, which comes out when the bitter roasted grain is at its early climax, not tart or anything, not infected, but just a little sharp for what it is, a touch less smooth than the par for the course on this sort of thing. dry cocoa notes, espresso crema, and brandy. hints of rum and figs and boozy cherries, fruitier than a lot of its peers. i like the body this has, the relative dryness for what it is, and the high mineral profile, almost like coal and iron and wet soil, very organic and from the earth to me, a lot of barrel char and wood, mature beer to say the least. this was a little colder than i wanted it to be, and i didnt really give it the time it seemed to want to open up, so i will have to revisit this again either from the bottle or in a newer vintage to compare. fun stuff, crux kills it with these banished series beers, happy to be seeing some of them around boise!
Dec 01, 2019
Rated: 4.02 by PhineasMcClintock from Massachusetts

Sep 06, 2019
Photo of Sammy
Reviewed by Sammy from Canada (ON)

3.9/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
for bourbon barrelled, surprisingly dry and bitter. Maybe this didn't age before they sent it around. Some older hop flavour there. On tap at Apex Portland.
Aug 25, 2019
Rated: 4.35 by Duncian from Pennsylvania

Aug 05, 2019
Photo of Oh_Dark_Star
Rated by Oh_Dark_Star from Washington

2.4/5  rDev -43.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.25
A boozy one. Had another with 13mo bottle age, and it was still bit hot and the molasses character is over the top.
May 04, 2019
Rated: 4.43 by Rub_This_BBQ from Massachusetts

Mar 13, 2019
Rated: 4.25 by ppavlick from New Jersey

Feb 18, 2019
Photo of TheGent
Reviewed by TheGent from New Jersey

4.17/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
This beer pours an opaque black. An espresso foam colored head that sits two fingers high in my tulip, eventually setting while leaving thick lace in its wake. As the beer sits the lacing disappears. No lacing as I drink the beer. No visible carbonation.

Intense roasted malt, burnt toast, nutty, dark chocolate, chocolate cake batter, molasses, vanilla, dark dried fruit, dark bread. A hint of alcohol but never distracting. There’s an earthyness that could be the rye malt. Gets more doughy and bready as it warms. Chocolate covered cherry cordial as it warms. The nose is downright world class.

Up front notes of dark chocolate, cocoa, bitter coffee, lemon rind / pith bitterness. Getting some sweetness in the middle like vanilla. It’s not clear to me what spices are used in this beer. I’m getting touches of cinnamon and hints of cardamom, but who knows. Could be flavors from something else, as there’s a lot going on here with the bourbon barrel, oak smoked wheat and the rye malt. Getting lots of chocolate and fudge as it warms up. The beer finishes dry, woody and bitter. Contributions I assume from the barrel and the oak smoked wheat. The beer is not smokey.

Mouthfeel is full bodied and it coats the palate nicely. Maybe a nice contribution from the wheat? But the finish is aggressively dry and bitter.

This is an intense beer. Initial aroma sets the stage for a huge RIS. It’s dry, wood-forward and bitter. At first I thought too much so. This beer mellowed as I drank it and as it warmed. The sweetness came out more to balance the bitterness.

This would pair divinely with steak. A Cajun ribeye, a coffee rubbed steak or anything Oscar style where the richness of the beef and crab would nicely complement the bitterness of the beer.

Enjoyed it more as it warmed.

This is an excellent beer. It’s not your run of the mill stout. It definitely stands out as unique and for that I respect it.
Feb 16, 2019
Rated: 3.81 by KAP1356 from Pennsylvania

Jan 22, 2019
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Reviewed by siskiyoucellar from Oregon

4.25/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Really outstanding RIS, which is not surprising from Crux. This one has been in my cellar for a year. Nice to look at, darkest brown but just a tad thin at the edges. The aroma really warms things up with pleasure-center-pleasing notes of milk chocolate and clean bourbon. ...and the taste follows beautifully with the chocolate becoming much darker with edges of dry cocoa, a hint of dark fruit but very little sweetness and just the right balance of bourbon. Clean mouthfeel, though I’d prefer just a little more viscosity. I’m looking forward to seeing what this will be like with a couple more years on it.
Jan 07, 2019
Rated: 3.85 by jheimbigner from Washington

Jan 02, 2019
Rated: 4.4 by Beerasaurus from Virginia

Dec 15, 2018
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Rated by ADTaber from South Carolina

2/5  rDev -52.8%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2
Clearly infected
Oct 21, 2018
Photo of rarigney
Reviewed by rarigney from Washington

4.28/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Appearance is very dark brown with a moderate tan head with good retention and lacing. Aroma and taste of dark roasted malt, dried fruit, vanilla, and bourbon. Medium to full bodied with a moderate alcohol warming.
Sep 24, 2018
Rated: 4.25 by Noles9585 from Washington

Jul 25, 2018
Rated: 4.19 by BirdsandHops from Oregon

Jun 26, 2018
Rated: 4 by jschott75 from Illinois

Mar 24, 2018
Rated: 4 by dfhhead25 from Pennsylvania

Feb 27, 2018
[BANISHED] Tough Love from Crux Fermentation Project
Beer rating: 94 out of 100 with 359 ratings