Birthday Bomb!
Prairie Artisan Ales

Birthday Bomb!Birthday Bomb!
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Beer Geek Stats | Print Shelf Talker
Style:
Stout - American Imperial
Ranked #129
ABV:
13%
Score:
97
Ranked #451
Avg:
4.38 | pDev: 6.85%
Reviews:
281
Ratings:
1,333
From:
Prairie Artisan Ales
 
Oklahoma, United States
Avail:
Rotating/Seasonal
Wants
  56
Gots
  354
SCORE
97
World-Class
Birthday Bomb!Birthday Bomb!
Notes: Prairie is pleased to announce and celebrate the 3rd birthday of our most popular, well known, and voted most likely to succeed beer we produce, Prairie Bomb! Join our celebration for the beer that changed it all. We did everything but hang up streamers.

What’s the buzz about anyway? Bomb! was a mad creation in response to the many complicated brews that required an interpreter to approach. The path to creating this ultimate beer that never planned on taking itself seriously led to many unexpected revelations. It contained almost every ingredient imaginable. It was difficult. It was delicious. It was a free spirit, complex but lending itself to endless possibilities. It became a much loved member of the family, and a representation of our brewing style and how it has evolved. In its original form Bomb! comes close to being a heady, strong dessert in itself. This led to the conclusion that we had exponential possibilities with flavor profiles and aging processes.

Because of this, Birthday Bomb! was conceived to celebrate three wonderful years of experimentation and fun loving flavors like the current incarnation with caramel sauce. Made in house by our brewers with nothing but black gloves and a propane tank. The rest is the complex mix of hops and malt with a healthy dose of the signature coffee and spices.
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Reviews: 281 | Ratings: 1,333 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of ZenAgnostic
ZenAgnostic from Texas

4/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a Duvel tulip. Picked up from the liquor store for about $8. No discernable date, but 12181 printed on base of neck.

Appearance - Pours relatively small 1 finger or less brown head with low retention and decent stick and lacing. Absolutely pitch black body that even backlit by a phone flashlight doesn't even produce even the slightest bit of transparency even around the edges. Sort of intimidating. Points for the impressive body, minus points for the unimpressive head. 4

Smell - Can't tell exactly what I'm smelling but it's like an undecipherable combination of soy sauce, coffee, and alcohol. The components don't really seem to stand apart from eachother, they just blend together. A slight swirl generates something that might be vanilla. Has a strong solvent smell. Maybe the high alcohol content, seeing as it's 13% ABV. Seems to be mellowing out and softening as it warms and breathes a bit. 4

Taste - Strong black coffee. Tobacco. Earthy. Slightly rounded out by the cocao and vanilla, but then resharpened by some red pepper spice warmth. Not really my cup of tea but I can appreciate it for what it is. 4

Mouthfeel - Bold, astringent, and a bit on the sharp side, with the extra high alcohol and chili peppers. This isn't easy drinking. It will wake up your mouth and mind. 4

Overall - Pretty good across the board, but it's just a little too lopsided and unbalanced. Though if you're looking for something with that sort of kick, then this will do the trick. I know giving 4's across the board can seem like lazy rating, but I genuinely have to give each aspect that grade. 4

Nov 06, 2020
Photo of Scotchboy
Scotchboy from Idaho

4.38/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2019 vintage pours pitch black into a mug; lead aromas of peppery coffee and subtle sweetness; the palate is exceptionally full of vanilla, caramel, coffee/espresso, chocolate/cocoa nibs, toffee, with the smallest hint of spice (very complementary). Very smooth full body with invisible alcohol at over one year old in the bottle; well-rounded and delicious. Overall every adjunct is well-integrated and this isn’t cloying at all. Loved this one, as I do most Prairie stouts.

Oct 31, 2020
Photo of rodbeermunch
rodbeermunch from Nevada

4.24/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Another March Madness 2017 beer. Its a Prarie shelfie, pretty sure it was an elrogish contribution.

Pours black. Thin brown head 1/4". Comes with the usual bomb roasted malt and coffee notes in the nose, plenty forceful once again.

Taste is another bomb, but this time with some peppers to it. They seem to be in the right proportion, as they provide heat and warmth, but they don't detract from the rest of the beer, it is plenty harmonized. Vanilla and cocoa provide quite the smoothing effect without bogging down into some sugary pastry beer. Like most of their beers, this one hides the alcohol really well. The beer drinks exactly like its commercial tug job proclaims, and its all the better for it.

When I think of non barrel aged stouts, this is one of the best, and in the most convenient format to boot. Not really sure what the caramel sauce is all about, that was the one area that didn't pan out for me, but I'm kind of glad it didn't really show up.

Oct 14, 2020
Photo of sjrider
sjrider from California

4.36/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle -dark as night with short khaki head leaving a ring of bubbles and not much else. Nose is muted roasty malt , some sweetness and a whiff of chili spice. Taste ups the ante with more of that and then some. Very smooth finish with a bit of mild chili afterburn. Delicious.

May 09, 2020
Photo of Brew_42
Brew_42 from Massachusetts

4.45/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours jet black without much head.

Smell is chocolate, vanilla, and coffee.

Taste is coffee, chocolate, vanilla, with a hint of chili on the back end. The caramel and toffee is not strong. Tastes very similar to the regular Prairie Bomb but the chili is more restrained. Really really tasty regardless.

Mouthfeel is thick on oily.

Overall as good as the Prairie Bomb. Hard to find a stout better than this.

Mar 26, 2020
Photo of captaincoffee
captaincoffee from Virginia

4.32/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

On draft at the Nook in Huntsville. Massive pour for a 13% beer, so I guess I'll have plenty of opportunity to savor this one. Dead opaque and just about black with just a sliver of a head. Nose is a rather "creamy" blend of toasty roasted notes, cocoa, and cooked marshmallow. Taste is even creamier than the nose indicated. A little on the sweet side, but not as cloying as these giant beers tend to get. Maybe lacking a big coffee flavor I was expecting, but plenty of pillowy toasted marshmallow, caramel (candy not malt), and rounded roasted flavors. Feels closer to 10% than 13%, and not even hot for that. Only complaint is I'd like to see some of the flavors pop as opposed to being so intermingled and soft. Excellent beer.

Mar 05, 2020
Photo of jwp777
jwp777 from Oklahoma

4.8/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pours pitch black with a thin caramel colored head that fades quickly in the middle but sticks around for a while around the glass. Not much lacing to speak of.

Smells like chocolate and vanilla with a little bit of coffee. The spices and coffee really show up in the taste, but also present are chocolate, vanilla, and caramel.

Feel - incredibly smooth. It’s definitely a beer to sip and not to take large gulps, but it drinks smoothly nonetheless. It’s not as “boozy” as I would have expected from a 13% beer. Aftertaste is slightly present, but the finish really is quite clean and dry.

Overall - Great stout. To me, this seems like a stout that I would give to someone who doesn’t like stouts and perhaps it would change their mind. Flavor is bold, but not overpowering in any way. Solid offering from yet another Oklahoma brewery.

Dec 19, 2019
Photo of lordofthewiens
lordofthewiens from New Mexico

4.47/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It poured a dark black color with a tiny head around the circumference of the glass.
Aroma of chocolate, vanilla, coffee, and a little spice.
Taste followed the nose. Dark chocolate, vanilla, coffee, and a hint of chilis.
Very smooth, would never guess it is 13% ABV.

Oct 27, 2019
Photo of SawDog505
SawDog505 from New Hampshire

4.43/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a 13 oz Dragons Milk open mouthed glass bottled 5/28/18. Pours a slick midnight black with a 2 finger mocha head that leaves a few thin streaks of lace as it slowly settles. 4.5

Smell is deep dark chocolate, vanilla bean, coffee grounds, toffee, and hazelnut. 4.5

Taste dark chocolate, vanilla, and coffee start the party, with toffee, hazelnut, a little pepper, and alcohol in the finish but for 12% pretty well balanced. 4.5

Mouthfeel is big, gentle carbonation, actually extremely approachable for it ABV, and a touch dry but a beer like this you expect more. 4.25

Overall another excellent stout from this brewery, love what they do with stout, expensive but always enjoyable. 4.25

Sep 19, 2019
Photo of NiceFurniture
NiceFurniture from New York

4.51/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought and drank in Aug 2019. Aroma is pleasant with no one dominating scent. Not too much coffee. Perfect level of bitterness. Wonderfully complex yet manageable flavor. One of the best Stouts that I have tried.

Aug 25, 2019
Photo of argock
argock from Virginia

4.57/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

2019 vintage

Black with 1/2 finger of dark beige head with good retention and a lot of lacing.

Aromas are unbelievably vivid with heavy fudge, cocoa, caramel, and coffee. All of them jump out of the glass. There is also a nice dash of scorched pepper.

Flavor is also delicious with layers of cocoa, caramel, espresso, and a touch of chili pepper heat with a little booze and a blast of roast in the finish. A tiny bit rough around the edges.

Feel is excellent, smooth and silky with soft carbonation and sumptuous feel.

Exceptional beer with explosive aroma and delicious flavor.

Jul 22, 2019
Photo of emyers
emyers from Illinois

4.35/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz. bottle poured into a snifter.

Near black with a thin light brown head.

Nose: Coffee, cinnamon, a touch of chili, and cocoa.

Taste: Coffee up front followed by dark chocolate and cinnamon. Subtle chili comes in on the finish.

Feel: Full-bodied, medium-low carbonation, a bit of lingering heat.

Jul 19, 2019
Photo of Herbertly
Herbertly from Washington

4.11/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

2018 edition in July 2019.
Coffee, cocoa, and chili. A tasty dessert treat. Very little noticeable carbonation. A little thin, but still sticky and sweet. Very good and would get again, but didn't quite live up to what I thought it could be.

Jul 18, 2019
Photo of teromous
teromous from Virginia

4.04/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

From the neck, in yellow print: "10791EK7BIRTHDAY 05.28.2019 16:19"
From the back label: "12% Alc. by Vol."

Appearance: The body is black and it has a nice khaki head. It quickly fades out leaving no lacing.

Aroma: It smells like coffee and chocolate. There is a bit of a coffeehouse aroma to the beer rather than just coffee in a cup. It is a very pleasant smelling beer.

Taste: It tastes like chocolate at first, then it has this wonderful rich coffee flavor. There is a bit of sweetness in the middle. The aftertaste is pure coffee. Some alcohol flavor comes out a bit as the beer opens up while it warms, but it rests nicely with the other flavors.

Mouthfeel: The beer is very smooth and there is a notable lack of bitterness which works well for this beer. The beer does a superb job of hiding alcohol and it is very easy to drink.

Overall: The bottle claims that this is an "Imperial Stout with Coffee, Cacao Nibs, Vanilla Beans, Chili Peppers, Caramel Sauce and Toffee." The chili is absent and the beer mostly just has an accompaniment of coffee and chocolate flavors. Often times flavors can contribute to others to amplify them, and in this case it seems like the vanilla could be contributing to some of the chocolate flavor, with the caramel and toffee possibly contributing to the perceived sweetness. I enjoyed the beer and I would both recommend it and drink it again. Compared to the regular "BOMB!" beer this one has less heat and is a bit sweeter.

Jul 16, 2019
Photo of JohnFred4
JohnFred4 from New York

4.83/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Drank alongside the original Prairie Bomb!

Look: indistinguishable from Bomb! Blackest of pours, a little reddish-brown near the minimal-lacing head.

Smell: Irish coffee. Not a boozy smell like BCBS, maybe Irish Liqueur is a better description. Yes; it smells like Baileys.

Taste: Caramel, toffee, coffee, char, smoke, chili. It's not that the chili isn't there, but it is covered up/muted by the caramel sweetness. Graham cracker.

Feel: Incredibly heavy on the palette, much more so than Bomb! original. Cloying like southern sweet tea. But somehow I don't hate it. Don't get me wrong, this is 100% a dessert beer. I can usually drink stouts anytime, but for the first time I understand what people mean when they say "stouts are too heavy for me". This is, and the first time I've ever said this, a sipper.

Overall: I usually hate flavored beers, seeing the as a gimmick. But I actually love this. I don't see it as a step down from Bomb!, I see the original bomb as a meal, and this as dessert. Certainly couldn't drink it everyday, but as the name implies, save it for a birthday.

Jun 30, 2019
Photo of KCXK
KCXK from Missouri

4.69/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Had this beer on the recommendation of the barkeep. Serendipity? Maybe.

L- dark with a finger or so head
S- very rich, the chocolate and peppers are noted but not overbearing
T- smooth, complex and very tasty. Nothing overdone or overpowering. Well balanced
F- not as heavy as some I’ve had, nice clean finish
O- just wonderful. My first Prairie bomb and it was a banger

Jun 18, 2019
Photo of Megamickel
Megamickel from Texas

4.49/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured out of a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Black body, dark-brown head that quickly settled. Minimal thin lacing. Aroma is of coffee and chocolate with a hint of chili pepper. Chili pepper comes through more heavily in the taste, adding a unique twist backed up by the bold roasted malt and coffee. Feel is smooth and heavy, with just a little more carbonation than I'd like. Another worthy stout from Prairie.

May 24, 2019
Photo of Longhorn08
Longhorn08 from Texas

4.43/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very solid beer, and I appreciate the effort in trying to make an already great thing even better, but next time I’m just gonna but Bomb! Birthday variation is good, but a regression from the OG.

May 10, 2019
Photo of ICTguy21
ICTguy21 from Kansas

4.3/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look: deep dark and muddy blackish brown with a few bubbles rising up but no head

Smell: chocolate and roasty malts are predominant with just a touch of vanilla and pepper

Taste: huge roasty malts and chocolate, really follows the nose with the addition of an ever so slight hint of coffee

Feel: thick and full bodied, a little on the high side of carbonation for a stout this big but overall pretty good

Overall: excellent big beer here, the alcohol is noticeable at 13% but not overpowering. Good stuff!

Mar 12, 2019
Photo of MonDak_Joe1953
MonDak_Joe1953 from Minnesota

4.36/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle, with the stamped bottling date looking like January of 2017.
Dark cola colored body, with reddish brown backlit highlights. Hard pour conjured up a very fizzy, big bubble head that immediately fizzed away. Features a somewhat active surface roiling from rising bubbles. No lacing, just some oily surface coverage.
Aroma features dark roasted malts, with coffee, chocolate, and vanilla. The chili peppers may have faded.
Taste follows the smell, but adds in the vegetal quality of the peppers, and the slight heat that comes in way at the end, and sits on the tongue.
Thicker mouth feel. Languid carbonation.
Extremely good at hiding the higher 13%ABV. I prefer to drink this at close to room temperature, which to me allows the liquid to move more slowly, and to sit in the mouth longer, which allows more presentation of flavors. Well balanced, and a reminder of chocolate/coffee birthday cake.

Mar 05, 2019
Photo of 57md
57md from Pennsylvania

3.98/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This offering basically tasted like Bomb with less heat and with the addition of adjuncts that gave off the sweet flavor of chocolate cake with icing.

It's an interesting attempt but I just don't care for the flavor combo.

Feb 24, 2019
Photo of Wiffler27
Wiffler27 from North Carolina

4.66/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

smell has a nice boozey bourbon to it

flavor is sweet and mellow, full of whiskey to it yet doesn't burn. silky finish as well

i would describe it as a boozey stout cake. sweet, silky and clean

Dec 20, 2018
Photo of WickedBeer
WickedBeer from Alabama

4.53/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

On draft at World of Beer, Tuscaloosa, AL.

The pour is dark and viscous from the draft, cold temp but a good amount of foam rises up. What appears is rocky and a good variety of bubble size, and a ring of ivory head settles around the inside of the glass.

The aroma is full of roasty coffee, milk sugar, and hints of bakers chocolate in the finish. Smooth, balanced, sweet.

Creamy, lactose flavors really come out and balance out a contrast of roasted coffee beans. The two complimentary flavors work well with a dark chocolate backbone. Very balanced, with a chili presence only coming out very subtly as the beer warms.

Creamy, smooth, viscous. Soft, low carbonation and a residual stickiness in the finish. Warm down the hatch, booze very well masked.

Dec 15, 2018
Photo of Bluerabbitbell
Bluerabbitbell from Pennsylvania

4.02/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Interesting. Caliente Pizza and Draft House on a date night with mom watching the kids.... Definitely smell the peppers. Think imperial with a bit of heat!

Nov 24, 2018
Photo of RaulMondesi
RaulMondesi from California

4.24/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I find this beer to be an interesting one.

This one is definitely thick and rich like a Republican convention. But does it deliver in the end? It’s tough to say. At the price I want the full Monty, but what I get is an ok romp. Man, the Raul man has to say though, for being 13% it’s devilishly smooth like Mrs. Jones. I think the price tag is too high, but maybe so was I when I bought it.

Nov 13, 2018
Birthday Bomb! from Prairie Artisan Ales
Beer rating: 97 out of 100 with 1333 ratings