Barrel-Aged Birthday Bomb! | Prairie Artisan Ales

Barrel-Aged Birthday Bomb!Barrel-Aged Birthday Bomb!
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Average: 4.42 | pDev: 5.2%

Reviews: 18 | Ratings: 64

#226 ranked American Imperial Stout | 14.70% ABV

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Prairie Artisan Ales
Oklahoma, United States

Notes: Rotating availibility. Imperial stout brewed with cacao nibs, chili peppers, coffee, vanilla beans, caramel sauce, and toffee that has been aged in bourbon barrels
Barrel-Aged Birthday Bomb!Barrel-Aged Birthday Bomb!
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Reviews: 18 | Ratings: 64
Photo of Rimbimhoot
4.28/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: Very deep brown, no head
S: Fruity coffee, pepper, dark chocolate, maybe a hint of bourbon, sweet vanilla
T: Roasty malt, booze, coffee, bitter dark chocolate, balanced pepper spice and flavor, there is a sweetness that sometimes comes across as the vanilla/caramel/toffee adjuncts. The barrel doesn't seem to come through much without having the base version right next to this
M: Medium-heavy body with light carbonation
O: Each sip gives way to different components of the beer. This bottle of BA Birthday Bomb was bottled on my birthday, so that is pretty kewl dood.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
4.74/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

In my snifter the beer is a black color. There is a small red/orange head that receded quickly, leaving a rim of bubbles with a central island.
Aroma of coffee, chocolate, vanilla, and alcohol. Faint spice.
The taste is equally divided between coffee and chocolate. Some vanilla, some bourbon. Very faint chile in the aftertaste.
Incredibly smooth, given the ABV.

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Photo of MJSFS
4.76/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

12oz bottle poured into a PAA snifter. Black oily body with a minimal head and thick, dark alcohol legs coating the glass. Nose is whiskey and coffee with a sugary sweet caramel. Taste is bourbon barrel, coffee, vanilla, chocolate and caramel. Not getting much of the peppers, but this is very complex. Mouthfeel is silky smooth with a slight dryness. Overall this is a great BBA Stout. Definitely worth the price per ounce.

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Photo of TBoneJones
4.34/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Smells chilie-like with roasted notes of charred cocoa powder all in a nice way.
Taste is coconut, vanilla, coffee and barrel. Nice bite/ burn in the finish during a medium-smooth and pleasant mouthfeel that helps to make this a dangerously good sipper.

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Photo of superspak
4.47/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into snifter, bottled on 5/31/2019. Pours dense pitch black color with a small dense tan head with great retention, that reduces to a thin cap that lingers. Nice spotty lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of huge milk/dark chocolate, cocoa, dark roasted coffee, caramel, brown sugar, toffee, vanilla, bourbon, coconut, toasted oak, roasted nuts, chili pepper, cinnamon, fudge, brownie batter, biscuit, and dark bread/crust; with lighter notes of licorice, molasses, raisin, fig, date, smoke, char, leather, tobacco, herbal, grass, and yeast/roast/toast/oak earthiness. Incredible aromas with amazing complexity and balance of dark/roast/bready malts, cocoa, coffee, vanilla, chili pepper, caramel, toffee, bourbon barrels, and light fruity yeast/earthy hop notes; with big strength. Taste of huge milk/dark chocolate, cocoa, dark roasted coffee, caramel, brown sugar, toffee, vanilla, bourbon, coconut, toasted oak, roasted nuts, chili pepper, cinnamon, fudge, brownie batter, biscuit, and dark bread/crust; with lighter notes of licorice, molasses, raisin, fig, date, smoke, char, leather, tobacco, herbal, grass, and yeast/roast/toast/oak earthiness. Mild herbal, roast, char bitterness; and chili pepper, bourbon/oak tannin spiciness on the finish. Lingering notes of milk/dark chocolate, cocoa, dark roasted coffee, caramel, brown sugar, toffee, vanilla, bourbon, coconut, toasted oak, roasted nuts, chili pepper, cinnamon, fudge, brownie batter, biscuit, dark bread/crust, licorice, molasses, dark fruit, smoke, char, leather, tobacco, herbal, grass, and yeast/roast/toast/oak earthiness on the finish for a while. Insane complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roast/bready malts, cocoa, coffee, vanilla, chili pepper, caramel, toffee, bourbon barrels, and light fruity yeast/earthy hop flavors; with an amazing roasted bitter/sweet and bourbon/oak/chili spiciness balance; with no cloying, acrid, astringent flavors after the finish. Lightly increasing dryness from lingering roast bitterness and bourbon/oak/chili spiciness. Light-medium carbonation and very full body; with a very smooth, creamy/silky/velvety/bready, and lightly slick/sticky/chalky/tannic mouthfeel that is fantastic. Mild increasing warmth of 14.7%, pepper heat, and barrel booze after the finish. Overall this is an insane barrel aged spiced/coffee stout! All around amazing complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roast/bready malts, cocoa, coffee, vanilla, chili pepper, caramel, toffee, bourbon barrels, and light fruity yeast/earthy hop flavors; very smooth and dangerously smooth to sip on for the huge ABV, with the mildly bitter/spicy/tannic/drying finish. Amazing soft feel for the style/ABV. Perfectly balanced between super rich malts, fruity/nutty coffee, spices, and bourbon barrel presence/integration; mild earthy hops and fruity yeast. Not overly sweet/heavy from lingering dryness. A highly amazing offering, and world class style example as expected. Not overwhelming on any aspect.

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Photo of Luscious_Malfoy
4.44/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured from a 12oz bottle into a perception glass. pours black with a small tan head. smells of chocolate, coffee and a hint of pepper spice. don’t get a ton of barrel. taste is similar with the caramel/toffee sweetness taking a more prominent role. barrel shows up on the taste. whiskey and pepper sting on the backend. tastes great. rich and decadent. feel is thick with a low carbonation. overall, very tasty stout and a nice play on birthday bomb but the barrel was not quite as prominent as i was hoping for but still a very good beer.

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Photo of DoctorZombies
4.68/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Black no ruby edges pour at 55 degrees; dark cinnamon tan tight head; fairly quick cap leaves solid ring and island of micro dots; thick legs and dots of lace on swirl. Nose is cinnamon, green chilies, coffee with just a whiff of bourbon on the exhale. Chocolate, cocoa, baker’s chocolate and sweet caramel; some cinnamon and bourbon but the hot pepper sauce takes the whole middle lane; oak and vanilla as liquid warms; spicy chocolate cake/hot green chilies finish. Medium full body; moderate minus carbonation;dry chaulky Barrel feel with warming from the 14.7%; Dusty cocoa powder tongue coating. Overall the flavors are layered and well balanced; the sweet caramel sauce seems to balance the base beer’s spicy hot sauce taste; the vanilla is a great addition; any coffee notes got lost in the mix and I would have liked more bourbon, but what is in my glass “as is” is awesome.

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Photo of metter98
4.39/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer is jet black in color. It poured with a quarter finger high dark tan head that settled down, leaving a lighter tan collar around the edge of the glass and a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface.
S: Light aromas of cacao nibs, chili peppers, and vanilla are present in the nose.
T: The taste follows the smell, but is much more complex as there are also flavors of bourbon along with notes of caramel and hints of coffee.
M: It feels full-bodied and rather smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is well rounded in that the taste has a lot of complexities where you can pick up nearly every single one of the ingredients and it also is quite drinkable considering its strength as there are only slight traces of alcohol in the taste (which mostly seem to be associated with the bourbon).

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of 5toutman75
4.54/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Prairie’s stouts never fail to impress me. They have the thick syrupy mouthfeel that I love first off. I love the chocolate smell. I can smell and taste the booze a bit, but I like that as bourbon forward stouts are my preference. The caramel and toffee is there just enough to make this interesting too. So glad I bought 3 of these and I’m curious how it’ll age and whether the loss of adjunct flavor for less booze flavor will improve it or not.

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Photo of avalon07
4.49/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: Poured from a bottle to a snifter glass. Had a motor oil black color and a thick, opaque consistency. There was a half inch of creamy, tan-colored head that lasted an average amount of time. Below average lacing.

S: A very enticing aroma of chocolate, coffee, malt, bourbon, caramel, and chili peppers.

T: Tasted of a decent amount of malt (present throughout), a bit of bourbon (and its accompanying barrel), a ton of chocolate (the dominant force here), some caramel, a few chili peppers, and a hint of vanilla. This is a complex, powerful, yet subtle, flavor. It's not as aggressive as some other BBA stouts, but it's still incredibly tasty.

F: An average amount of carbonation with a silky smooth finish. Full-bodied.

O: A wholly enjoyable stout. Drinkable.

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Photo of GuyFawkes
4/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled 6/4/19; drank 6/29/19 @ the Yarchives.

Black appearance.

A rough pour yielded a nice, noisy dark tan head; frothy lace.

Dark roast coffee bean, dark chocolate, cream oak & mild bourbon heat notes in the nose.

Creamy medium thick mouthfeel.

Dark roast coffee bean & dark chocolate flavors up front; cream, mild oak & faint bourbon notes on the finish.

A bit on the "roast-y" side, but the cream-y, lighter mouthfeel balances that out a bit. Dangerously drinkable at almost 15%...

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Photo of mkh012
4.34/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 3 weeks ago.

Pours near-black with a finger of tan head.

The nose is chocolate, caramel, barrel, roast, and savory depth. Hints of chili and cherry.

The taste is chocolate, caramel, cherry, and light chili and barrel. Smooth for the ABV.

The mouthfeel is medium plus with subtle dry bourbon around the edges.

Overall, delicious.

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Photo of Roguer
4.49/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Strong dark brown head production, but retention is lacking; after establishing about 1 1/4 fingers long enough for a photo, it suddenly collapsed to a thin ring around the rim of the glass. Body is unsurprisingly black.

Nose is quite strong, and similar to the base beer (if you are familiar with it) along with a touch of oak. Coffee is the most dominant tone, along with oak, booze, toffee, caramel, brown sugar, chocolate, peppers, vanilla, bourbon mash - but the coffee absolutely dominates.

Much smoother and less one-note on the palate, with a thick, creamy, dark sweetness that will have you thinking of all the flavors at once. Brown sugar, caramel, chocolate, peppers, and vanilla up front, accented by the bourbon very subtly (around the edges). Halfway through, the coffee comes back through in dark, grainy, earthy tones, but it is incredibly smooth - much more so than the nose. The aftertaste is like chewing on a chunk of pure chocolate - delectable, semi-sweet, dark, just plain wonderful. Very mild pepper notes on the aftertaste as well.

Barrel presence is almost just noticeable as an amping up of the other flavors and the booze level (and some oak tones) - highly complementary. I suspect they did not age this one for long, which is appropriate given the number of flavor additives (which one expects to decrease in influence over time). Honestly, if I hadn't known this was barrel aged, I might not have noticed, especially with all the other flavors going on, but the difference between this beer and the non-BBA Birthday Bomb! is still quite remarkable.

Thick and chewy, with a boozy alcohol heat that is wholly appropriate for the ABV and style, and yet never comes across as even remotely unpleasant or harsh. It's just "big," from the full body to the heat, and it feels right.

What can I say? This takes a fantastic beer and brings it to another level. Probably the most impressive Bomb! since I first tried the original. More bourbon flavor would bring it up yet another notch, but that's hardly necessary; this is insanely good.

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Photo of brentk56
4.46/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours espresso dark with a thin, bubble-filled mocha head; viscous and leggy with spots and squiggles of lace sticking

Smell: Rich chocolate and caramel, with strong Bourbon tones; the coffee and vanilla are also apparent, as is the chili pepper that brings a fruity edge

Taste: The Bourbon makes a statement at the outset, enveloping the chocolate, coffee and caramel; the chili pepper emerges quickly; hints of vanilla and hot fruit; plenty of Bourbon through the finish

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with moderate carbonation; warmth in the gullet

Overall: A full range of flavors in this impressive offering


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Photo of BEERchitect
4.5/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Since the emperor gets to wear new clothes, for his birthday he gets to wear caramel sauce. ...and bourbon. This time enveloped in whisky accented attire, the flavors of the base Birthday Bomb! imperial stout are brought to life with the added sweetness, spiciness and smoothness of the caramel and booze soaked oak.

Much like tar, Barrel-Aged Birthday Bomb! layers in the glass with a patient swirl of coffee creme. Just as ominously dark and carrying an onyx-like sheen as any other variant of Bomb!, the deep and sultry perfume overcomes the nose with espresso, dark chocolate, grilled fruit, vanilla and gently seared sugars. Its lavish taste slathers the early palate with
a dominance of caramel, but also vanilla and molasses before the chocolate and char follows closely behind.

The stout develops more earthy character on the middle palate with those fresh Kentucky whisky flavors, its decadent bittersweet chocolates and roasting walnut bitterness. Its lightly syrupy chocolate and caramel medley is matched with the spiciness of sharp cinnamon, vanilla and peppery capsaicin as the barrel's taste of oak, caramel and toasted cherry and fennel give a striking bourbon tone in the end.

Remaining rich, viscous and chewy, the beer's full and creamy body weighs on the tongue with the low-lying carbonation that ensures full saturation of the tastebuds. Trailing with a long, heated warmth of whisky soaked tannins, its the caramel and chocolate that command the balance into a decadent, dessert-like aftertaste.

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Photo of Fireman_RK
4.59/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Tasted side-by-side with non-BA Birthday Bomb!

L: Dark mocha hues with a thin sandy head
S: A bit of barrel on the nose that is quickly underscored by a healthy dose of chili and caramel
T: Dark roasted coffee with caramel creamer, cacao and dark chocolate that melds with a subtle sweet bourbon profile and finished with a dry chili heat
F: Medium bodied and ample carb
O: Really nice sipper here. Varied and complex flavor profile - was eagerly awaiting the release of this into distro and was not disappointed. The barrel adds a bit more depth and is a welcomed addition. Great brew.

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Photo of don1481
4.39/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12oz 2019 vintage poured into snifter.

A: Pours jet black with a finger width mocha head that dissipates in 30 seconda.

S: Chile forward for sure. Not much barrel on the nose

T: chiles, vanilla, chocolate, booziness as well. Less boozy than I would have expected

M: moderately thick. The Chile definitely leaves heat in the throat.

O: Tasty, definitely worth trying, but 10.99 a bottle is a touch steep.

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Photo of russpowell
4.31/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 2.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an effervescent ebony with one finger of cocoa colored head. A little lacing & head retention

S: Coffee, booze, vanilla, some chilles once warm

T: Chocolate, vanilla, some coffee & dryness up front. Luscious chocolate, vanilla, barrel dryness/boozeyness, plus a little coffee as this warms. Finishes with oaky dryness, plenty of chocolate, a little vanilla & just a kiss of booze & a little raisin & dark cherry showing up late

MF: Fairly thick, slight carbonation

Boozeyness is well hidden, rich, very much a sipper & a fine, albeit an expensive effort

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Barrel-Aged Birthday Bomb! from Prairie Artisan Ales
Beer rating: 95 out of 100 with 64 ratings