Birthday Bomb!
Prairie Artisan Ales

Birthday Bomb!Birthday Bomb!
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Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
Style:
Stout - American Imperial
Ranked #114
ABV:
13%
Score:
97
Ranked #433
Avg:
4.38 | pDev: 6.85%
Reviews:
278
Ratings:
1,322
From:
Prairie Artisan Ales
 
Oklahoma, United States
Avail:
Rotating/Seasonal
Wants
  56
Gots
  358
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: 278 | Ratings: 1,322 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by jlindros:
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jlindros from Massachusetts

4.34/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to rudzud and Francois

No head, super long legs, pitch black thick syrupy beer.

Nose great mix of aromas, dark chocolate, cocoa, caramel, plenty of vanilla, nice chili pepper, vanilla frosting, fresh roasted coffee beans, caramel candy and cocoa dust, fudge cocoa.

Taste brings more chocolate fudge, creamy cocoa, little caramel syrup cocoa syrup, touch of char and roast, fresh roasted coffee, mild pepper heat, ancho chili like, plenty of vanilla frosting, syrupy with a little booze, plenty of coffee syrup, fair to mild bitterness. Finish cocoa fudge, coffee, nutty, little cayenne pepper lingering, choc syrup.

Mouth is fuller bod, little pepper heat, very little booze, decent carb, touch syrupy.

Overall pretty nice, not sure if better than the original, but good.

Jul 29, 2016
More User Reviews:
Photo of StonedTrippin
StonedTrippin from Colorado

3.73/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

this is good beer, i mean, at the end of the day, its still bomb, but what the heck are they doing putting caramel sauce in it? its so sugary and sweet that its hard to drink, and it sits awfully heavy in the gut. whats worse, the sweetness doesnt have a ton of flavor, but it still finds a way to cover up all the other added ingredients that make the original bomb such a winner. this to me was a major regression in the series, and one of the most diabetic brews i have ever had in my glass. still looks nice, jet black, shiny, with an espresso crema type head and great density. the nose starts to get a little sweet, i smell caramel on ice cream when i try, but its still a big stout with all kinds of chocolate and coffee aromas. the flavor is where is drops way off into a sugary mess, not enough of the bitter roasty balance coming through to counter it, definitely an issue for me. i think with the sugar the booze is exposed a bit too, this drinks hot and heavy, the regular bomb didnt do this at all. i am being critical here, because this the last thing bomb needed was a spike of caramel sauce, but the beer is still worthy and has a lot of merit, i just dont see this as a useful reincarnation of it. way too sweet for my palate, not enough of bombs famous nuance as a result. skip it, especially for the price.

Jun 08, 2016
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Chcshammonde from California

4.5/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Excellent bomb! iteration. This one is silkier and smoother than regular bomb! The extra lactose and caramel changes the beer noticeably, and I really enjoyed the change up. The sweetness balances everything perfectly, it really is like cake icing. But in the best way. Peppers are still prominent but balanced. IMO, home run for Prairie!

May 14, 2016
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rsuarez1982 from Texas

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

Dec 02, 2019
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BEERchitect from Kentucky

4.25/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Like most birthday ensembles, any food associated with is going to take a sweeter tone. And the Birthday Bomb by Prairie Artisan Ales is no different. A healthy heaping of caramel balances the roast, coffee, char, pepper and booze of the standard Bomb but also rounds out some of its more identifiable characteristics.

Lavishly viscous in its pour, a creamy and saucy ale swirls with the rich cling to the glass like cake batter. Inky and tar-like, its pitch black darkness caps with a tall foamy cap seemingly like a richer espresso look. Coffee and sweet cream greet the nose with a tingle of cinnamon, rum, coffee and chocolate while its subsequent sweetness is much the same but slathered with the overt sweetness of caramel.

Nearly honey-like in how the beer saturates the sweet tooth, the beer's caramel character soothes the palate and calms the spiciness of both the alcohol, cinnamon and chili pepper as well as the earthen char of dark-roast coffee and cocoa. The slow recession of caramel sweetness allows the beer's typical spice, chili, coco and coffee profile to project but not with the gusto of the original Bomb.

Full, lavish and rich on the palate, the stout risks a slight cloying texture in favor for an utmost sweet and savory affair. Lingering long with caramel and a coffee-like bitter taste a firm suggestion of espresso and rum-laced macchiato lingers deeply into the next sip.

Jun 16, 2016
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Slatetank from Pennsylvania

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

I had this on tap at Federal Taphouse served chilled in a snifter.

The color is black with medium brown head with fine bead and good retention. The smell is full of malt with sweet aroma of cocoa and light spice with a roast aroma and sweet vanilla odor with cinnamon-roll type fragrance. The feel is very good with warming quality of double digit abv stout with medium high carbonation to balance the sweetness with a viscous and sweet body yet semi-bitter with roasted texture and dryness of alcohol in the finish with moderate alcohol that lingers on the palate.

The taste is excellent with rich sweet and slightly spiced flavor with a mix of chocolate malt and dark caramel up front with mild coffee mid palate and some vanilla to smooth out the alcohol in the taste with some roasty woody accents in the finish. The emphasis is on coffee and vanilla with subtle hint of pepper and caramel gives some residual sweetness. Overall this is a great STRONG stout but I prefer the original since it seems to have more pepper flavor and heat. Perhaps the caramel in this iteration makes it seem sweeter? I think the original is hard to improve upon but I have not tried the rum or bourbon variants yet.

Jul 29, 2016
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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
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NCCIndy from Indiana

4.06/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I love Bomb and the variants. What I love most about the Bomb is the wonderful vanilla and chiles with the light coffee & chocolate background.

This variant pushes the coffee into the foreground, where it is joined by an excessive amount of caramel/sweetness. The vanilla and chile falls to the background. Though it's still better than a lot of the shelf stouts out there, I should have stuck with the regular Bomb and saved myself $2/bottle.

May 12, 2016
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StraightNoChaser from Georgia

4.46/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

look: Dark as hell brown, nearly opaque like a stout ought to be. Modest tan head with messy lacing.
smell: a nose bomb of roasty char, coffee, subtle pepper, caramel. Rich but surprisingly gentle overall for a 13%er.
taste: Caramel is more prominent in the taste than the nose. Slight pepper burn in the finish. Amazingly drinkable for a rich and ballsy stout. Great balance and blend of roasty char, and caramel sweetness.

Sep 17, 2017
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mmorris15 from Maine

4.5/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours pitch black with a cinnamon head. Aroma and taste of coffee, chocolate, caramel, vanilla, and light chili peppers. Feel is thick. Overall, excellent sweet stout. Alcohol is well hidden.

Feb 23, 2017
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KBlodorn from Ohio

3.09/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Let me preface by saying I am a big fan of the Bomb! series, but this beer is downright bad. Where do I begin? I cracked open a Bday on Thursday night. I don't know if it was just me, but it had virtually no smell. I thought that was really odd. I poured into a Revolution snifter and took a couple sips. There was little to no carbonation or head. Just a black liquid, not surprising of course and that's fine.

But the taste just was not there compared to the other Bombs. After a couple sips I decided i got a "bad" one and drain-poured it. Cracked open a second one - turns out it's just bad. I drank the second one though - wasn't pouring two out. I at the end of the second one I thought it had finished better than it started which is why I'm giving it a 3+. Still disappointed though

Jun 10, 2016
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Boccu from New York

4.68/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Pours pitch black. With a nice head. Aroma is peppers, coffee and coco. Taste follows the nose with a light pepper finish. Excellent stout which is not my typical stout style at all. Very balanced and the peppers are well maintained so it's very drinkable.

Jan 14, 2017
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CHickman from New York

4.53/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours as black as tar with a solid 2 finger brown foamy head that was full of bubbles and dissipated on the average to fast side, while leaving very good spotty lacing. The head did not have the staying power of other imperial stouts.

Smells of the spices and chili peppers up front, mixed with dark chocolate, cocoa nibs, burnt coffee, roasted malt, vanilla and more chocolate. The aroma has layers upon layers of chocolate, chocolate malts, burnt coffee grinds, espresso, black dark roast coffee and a rich sweetness like a chocolate cake with fudge. Vanilla, faint piney hops and earthy notes trail and help cover up the ABV and chili peppers. Complex in the maltiest way possible, this is a great nose as it managed to balance the vanilla, chili peppers, coffee and chocolate.

As expected it got better as it warmed, but even cool this beer was delicious. Like the nose it was dynamic with a damn fine balance of the vanilla, chili peppers, peppery spices, coffee and variety of chocolate flavors. The chili peppers add some of that semi-metallic taste to it, but the rush of coffee grinds, cocoa powder, brown sugar, molasses and more chocolate keep it in check and mask the 13% ABV very well. If you like the spice accents in your imperial stout, then you will really like this as it's really similar to the original BOMB! and Westbrook's Mexican Cake. Very smooth for a combination of these flavors, it goes down much easier than it should and was a great slow sipper.

Jun 08, 2017
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BWood from California

4.45/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Typical prairie stout. Pours dark with little head. No lace. Smell is good with hints of some carmel. Chocolate hits harder in this beer than bomb. Ultra smooth feel with a nice finish. Excellent variant.

Jul 13, 2017
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OrangeMen from New York

4.37/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2016 vintage
~1 month from bottling date

Appearance- Pours a black color, opaque, oily body. Very thin layer of dark khaki colored head. Lots of alcohol legs, coats glass. Some spotty head lacing.

Aroma- Roasted malt, mocha coffee, dark chocolates, dry cocoa. Sweet and creamy vanilla, caramel, rich butterscotch, cookies and cream, creamy pudding.

Taste- Rich sweetness, creamy dessert-like vanilla, vanilla cake or pudding, rich caramel, nutty, milky sugary sweetness. Fudgy dark chocolates, mild coffee and roastiness on the finish. Real subtle peppery heat.

Feel- Medium to full bodies,sweet smooth creaminess, coats the mouth. Lower carbonation.

Overall- Tons of sweetness that really tastes like eating a dessert, cake, pudding, or ice cream. Vanilla comes forward the most but the caramel is right there to follow. On the finish there is a bit of a bittersweet chocolate, roast, and coffee to balance. However, this is mainly one sweet, rich beer.

Jun 11, 2016
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jp32 from Michigan

4.52/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours pitch black in color and looks dense. Small amount of tan head rises and then aptly fades. Smells rich of leather, coffee, roasted malts, anise, boozy cabernet, char, and a faint note of chili peppers.

A tasty sweet flavor slides across with a texture nearly like velvet. Vanilla cake and chocolate are both much more pronounced in the flavor than they were in in the aroma. Also caramel. Lots of malts carry the body of this beer from open to finish, with notes of coffee included. It's definitely sweeter than most stouts, but delicious. Full-bodied with a soft, low carbonation level. Very tasty beer. I loved it.

Dec 18, 2016
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CaptainHate from Ohio

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

It's two days after my birthday so why not. I had watched a YouTube review of this year's version where the reviewer stressed that the coffee flavor dominated but I'm not finding that to be the case; more like the pepper was prominent when it came out of the fifty degree cellar fridge and, when it warms doesn't go away while other flavors rise up like chocolate and vanilla and maybe a tobacco like flavor. Just another well constructed and pricey Imperial stout from Prairie.

Nov 11, 2018
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heddar33 from Pennsylvania

4.87/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Jun 23, 2017
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JamesStreet from Louisiana

4.19/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

May 20, 2016
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driftlessbeer from Wisconsin

4.5/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sep 24, 2016
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OompaMentor from Georgia

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

8/25/2018

Jan 03, 2019
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Damian from Massachusetts

4.07/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Drank from a 12 fl. oz. bottle purchased at Fort Point Market, Boston, MA
Served in a snifter

I popped this in celebration of my belated birthday. As usual, Prairie releases a beer with incredibly hip and hilarious label art. The beer itself poured a foreboding near pitch black. Oily and viscous. The liquid was topped by a finger-tall crown of tight, burnt sienna colored froth that quickly dissolved. The resulting liquid looked completely still and rather ominous.

The nose was really intense. Big roasty, smoky notes hit hard right off the bat. Lots of charred espresso. There was a noticeable oxidized, metallic-like quality as well. Perhaps a hint of vegetal green pepper too. Strange but really interesting. Some brown sugar sweetness was also detectible. As the beer warmed, fragrant dark roast coffee notes came forth.

The flavor profile followed suit with the aroma. Roasty and slightly acrid but also very sweet. Caramel and brown sugar notes led things off. Espresso came through mid palate. The metallic and oxidized notes appeared on the back end. More brown sugar and maple. Big boozy notes, some spiciness and a touch of vanilla trailed into the finish. Sweet maple notes lingered after the swallow.

Rich and full in body. The thick, oily liquid contained a super fine, frothy effervescence. Creamy and slick on the palate. The sugars in the beer left a super sticky film on my lips.

I really enjoyed Prairie's Bomb! and Barrel Aged Bomb! but Birthday Bomb! was a bit of a mess. Between the intense roastiness, the near cloying sweetness and the subtle metallic notes in both the aroma and the flavor, this beer was a lot to handle.

Sep 06, 2016
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HoistinBrews from Minnesota

4.54/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Sep 28, 2016
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bl00 from Pennsylvania

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

I think I let this one sit too long. Too much chili on the nose and green pepper on the pallet. Lesson learned!

Feb 15, 2018
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dtm426 from Michigan

4.48/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

May 25, 2016
Birthday Bomb! from Prairie Artisan Ales
Beer rating: 97 out of 100 with 1322 ratings