Prairie Noir | Prairie Artisan Ales

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Prairie NoirPrairie Noir

Brewed by:
Prairie Artisan Ales
Oklahoma, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Prairie Noir is our bourbon barrel aged imperial oatmeal stout. We brew this beer with a huge amount of oats to give it an ever so silky mouth feel. Notes of coffee, chocolate, and toasted marshmallow can be found in the flavor and aroma of this beer. Notes of whiskey and carmel are also packed into this beer.

Added by chocosushi on 12-24-2012

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Reviews: 105 | Ratings: 808
Photo of BarrytheBear
2.54/5  rDev -39.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

Bottle courtesy of Ed...750 ml....thanks buddy.

I simply cannot jive the beer in my glass with my tastes or other reviews. Harsh tannic barrel, cheap whiskey, some peat, and too much alcohol on the finish.

In short, a very disappointing and even somewhat unpleasant BA stout.

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Photo of ahbithwabm
4.62/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Black with tan foamy head that sticks around for some time

S: roastyness, coffee, slight caramel sweetness, chocolate

T: Roasty and slightly smokey, lots of dark chocolate and some coffee. slight vanilla and whiskey

M: A little light with mild carbonation. Extremely smooth and silky

O: Very good beer that is not too overpowering with the whiskey barrel

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Photo of brianmandell
4.12/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle with burgundy color wax in snifter

Dark pour with ring of lacing. Scents of dark, roasty malts with chocolate, coffee and a hint of candied cherry - reminds me of black forest cake. Taste is sweet chocolate and bright fruit up front carried by the effervescent carbonation (this dies out a bit as the beer warms and the carbonation fades) followed by some vanilla. Then the roasty malts hit you - a bit ashy with a hint of bourbon on the back end. There is a charred, roasty bitterness along with some dark chocolate and coffee notes. The boozy finish is very dry. The mouthfeel is light but silky and will not please those who like their stouts chewy. The active, effervescent carbonation is quite nice. This is a finely crafted stout that changes as it warms. It has great depth of flavor but the the whiskey portion of the beer isn't fully integrated - That is my least favorite characteristic of the beer. Maybe some age would improve the balance. Drink closer to room temperature.

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Photo of McStagger
4.15/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

From notes.

A: Black, small tan head. Excellent lacing in the glass.

S: Some booziness. Whiskey, dark cocoa. Huge roasty notes. Touch of toffee sweetness.

T: Very similar to the smell. This one drinks a bit hot. Sweetness of milk chocolate, candied vanilla. (Bottle said marshmallow, which is very spot on).

M: Medium bodied. Again, very warm in the back.

O: Very good beer. However, the heat was a tad distracting.

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Photo of Jimmeekrek
3.6/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

This is my first taste of Prairie, and had incredibly high hopes and expectations; unfortunately those hopes and expectations were not met in the least. Maybe I expected too much, but more likely this was an average Bourbon Barrel stout from a brewery that is way overhyped. Appearance was good, with just an average smell. The mouthfeel was smooth, albeit a little thin for the style. Taste was nowhere near as complex as I anticipated from decription and previous ratings. Heavy amounts of roast and Dark Chocolate, with no sweet undertones left me wanting more. It reminded me of a less complex BA BORIS, with nowhere near the mouthfeel or texture. Not bad, but certainly not great.

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Photo of d5001986
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into tulip. (Red wax)

A: Pours pitch black with huge, foamy, mocha colored head.

S: Coffee, roastyness, Caramel, and booze.

T: Booziness up front. It's sweet, roasty, and slightly smokey. Next there's coffee, chocolate,and a slight fruitiness. The smokey, roasted coffee taste lingers on the tongue.

M: Medium-heavy body. Very silky smooth texture that seems to coat the mouth.

O: An excellent stout, good complexity, and the barrel seems to add about the right amount of sweetness.

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Photo of kojevergas
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with uninteresting label art and red wax-ed over pry-off pressure cap acquired at a local Texas bottle shop and served into an Avery stem-tulip in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are very high given the brewery and that this is currently #26 on the Top 50 Southwest beers list. 11% ABV. Reviewed as an "imperial stout aged in oak whsikey barrels." Distributed by the Shelton Bastards - which explains the high $7.49 USD price point.

Served chilled and allowed to come to room temperature over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a one finger wide head of gorgeous khaki colour. Full and supple, with a great soft complexion and shiny sheen. Smooth even consistency. Good creaminess and thickness. Head retention is quite good for the 11% ABV - about 6 minutes. Perfect even consistent lacing coats the sides of the glass as the head slowly recedes. Great looking head across the board.

Body colour is a predictable opaque solid jet-black. Some fine yeast particles are visible about the bottom of the glass. Appears adequately carbonated.

Overall, it's a really good looking imperial stout. That said, it's exactly what you'd expect and isn't unique or special. I'm really looking forward to the first sip. It's a rich appearance and the head is seductive.

Sm: Has a notable oat presence; they really used the oats for taste here - not just for the smooth texture. That's ballsy. Has a lovely milk chocolate aroma which comes off authentic; this is genuine chocolate, not artificial chocolate character or mere chocolate malt. Wonderful succulent cream, subtle hints of coffee, and well-integrated caramel notes are detectable, and work brilliantly with the other notes here. I also get a fantastic underside of roast (both barley and coffee) which I hope to God gets preserved in the taste. As it warms, some marshmallow emerges.

The barrel notes seem very motivated. The subtle whiskey spiciness, buried faint oak, and kiss of vanilla complement and accentuate the notes of the base beer instead of overwhelming them.

If this tastes as good as it smells, I'm in for a real treat.

No yeast character or overt alcohol is detectable. There are no off-notes.

T/Mf: The open greets the drinker with a welcoming creaminess and a smooth almost silky feel which remains throughout the beer. It's very soft for an imperial stout; this isn't the aggressive heavy texture you might expect. Ideal thickness and weight on the palate. Full-bodied. Has a great presence and texture overall. Excellent carbonation as well.

Not gushed, hot, boozy, astringent, harsh, or rough.

The creaminess is marvelous, and the oats work incredibly well in the body alongside the dark malts. There's no booziness at all here, and no yeast character or alcohol makes an appearance. The subtle milk chocolate is magnificent and integrates very naturally into the flavour profile. Light caramel, marshmallow, and vanilla lend still more nuance to an already wondrously complex and subtle beer. A very cohesive brew; I'd say the build is gestalt - there's nothing extraneous here and if you took out any individual note the beer would suffer. The whiskey barrel character is unfortunately a bit reticent, but that may be a plus because spiciness wouldn't really suit this taste too well; bourbon seems like it'd be a much better fit.

Good depth of flavour. Above average duration of flavour. Slightly below average intensity of flavour.

Constructively, it's a touch too sweet and there are some wisps of sticky dark fruit which never really amount to anything. Similarly, there's a barely present coconut note (probably from the whiskey?) which should really be amped up. Additionally, the roasty character I loved in the aroma is much more tame in the taste, which feels like a major missed opportunity.

Dr: Sinfully good and obscenely drinkable for the high ABV. This beer is a real treat and is a hell of an imperial stout. Really solid work from Prairie; I was beginning to think they were a one-trick pony what with all their farmhouse ales, but I'm happy to say I was dead wrong. I can see why it holds a spot on the Top 50 Southwest - and it definitely deserves it. I'd absolutely recommend this to friends, and in spite of its high price point I'd definitely buy it again. As far as imperial oatmeal stouts go, this is right up there with Founders Breakfast Stout in my estimation. I could easily have another. I'll go out of my way to hunt down the variants. Incredible stuff.


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Photo of Uanof
4.07/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

From 12oz to a tasting snifter.

A: dark brown almost black as the night, not much of a head, but he bubbles sure are persistent. Quickly dissipating tan foam to be expected from the barrel aging.

S: picking some dark chocolates and whiskey fumes from the aging as well, luckily this isn't too strong as it would have ruined the whole beer experience.

T: getting chocolate, vanilla, very mild roast and again the whiskey, but it such a small amount that it balances and complements very well the rest of the flavors bringing them all together.

M: medium bodied, sticky, goes down well. As it warms up the roastiness start to be more noticeable and a nice warming feeling follows shortly after, makes you just want to keep on sipping until it's all gone.

O: excellent beer, nicely balanced, they managed pretty well the whiskey barrel aging as to not overpower the beer but complement it. It's a keeper!

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Photo of MattSweatshirt
4.01/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Heavy pour gives way to a thick voluminous light brown head and a black body. Plenty of lace and good retention.

The aroma presents whiskey, chocolate, roasted malts, touch of vanilla and caramel sweetness.

Whiskey and oak from the barrels, lots of coffee from the roasted malt, chocolate and caramel.

Drinking this on a freezing day and it provides a nice warmth. The carbonation is low and the body is medium. The oats give it a nice smooth feel.

In the world of barrel aged stouts it doesn't stack up to the big boys. Still a solid beer.

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Photo of Brob245
4.26/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Appearance - dark brown almost black with deep carmel color head. Retained very good lacing in the glass.

Smell- faint hints of smoke and oak.

Taste - toasty, slightly sweet malt character with a dark chocolate finish.

Mouthfeel - light carbonation with a silky smooth texture.

Overall - an enjoyable beer, very silky texture. Nothing overwhelming but I liked it none the less.

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Photo of alaimoa
4.38/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into a teku. Not sure of age but likely around 8-12 months
A: black with mocha ring and mocha lace
S: caramel, whiskey, burnt sugar
T: sweet caramel, bitter chocolate, whiskey notes no burn
M: smooth, thick, silky
Overall great and will buy whenever I can

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Photo of jlindros
4.04/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a dark colored creamy thick but smaller head that leaves some lacing, pitch black thick beer with some legs too.

Nose big cocoa and bakers choc, big fluffy nougat carafa and mild biscuity malted milk ball, coffee roast, nice caramel layers and toffee, mild chewy hops and nice fluffy malts, little candy bar chocolate. Very light vanilla barrel notes but not really whisky.

Taste starts a bit sweet, lots of dark malts, cocoa, dark choc, bakers choc, into a mild smokey note and roasty, slight char, into a big spicy earthy hop, little peppermint like note with its own tingly anesthesizing feel, but then dies as the malts come back through again, with more cocoa and roast, very slight hint of barrel but barely. Finish gets a little warming booze, more roasty and dark cocoa, lingering earthy spicy hops and fair bitterness.

Mouth is med to fuller bod, decent fluffy carb, little warming booze.

Overall nice but nothing too special, just a basic imperial stout.

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Photo of rudzud
3.94/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Received this as an extra, shared with JLindros.

A - Poured into a Kate the Great tulip a very nice dark brown nearly black hue with a thin mocha head that leaves light lacing and a creamy blanket.

S - Aromas of chocolate, bourbon, alcohol, barrel, coconut (due to barrel), light vanilla, light dark fruits.

T - Taste is light smoke, roasted malts, dark chocolate with a weird minty thing going on in the middle. The bourbon is super faint, which is unfortunate, light barrel notes. Not much vanilla either.

M - Mouthfeel is nice for the style, alcohol hidden well.

O - Overall this beer was a bit disappointing when compared to bomb or pirate. Not nearly as much whiskey as I would like.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served alongside the Vanilla Noir.

Deep black with an oily beige head. Lovely aroma with all the usual suspects. Oak, bourbon, vanilla, chocolate. Fabulous flavor and wonderfully smooth. Rich flavor with ample dark chocolates. Mild alcohol presence. Full bodied with soft carbonation. Complex and well balanced. A top notch imperial stout.

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Photo of darthvohn
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Glass Used: Nonic Pint

Appearance: The pour was a viscous obsidian with very little head, however it retained quite a while. About one poker chip thickness, with a melted dutch chocolate ice cream color.

Smell: Juicy black cherry, chocolate and bourbon. Booze.

Taste: Chocolate and oakey bourbon. I am getting some dark fruit sweetness but nothing overpowering. The oak and bourbon linger on well after you finish your drink. Very nice. The 11% booze is surprisingly well hidden.

Mouthfeel: Medium body and light carbonation. Very smooth and silky.

Overall: A very nice barrel aged oatmeal stout. The chocolate and bourbon notes are fantastic mellowed by the nectar that is dark juicy fruits. I bet this would be very interesting with some age on it. Recommend.

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Photo of Moerdertaktiken
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pitch black, 2 finger head, great lacing

Aroma: Cherries, stone fruit, chocolate, bourbon, molasses, boozy.

Taste: Bourbon and stone fruits dominate the flavor. Earthy tones emerge, followed by a slight hop bitterness. There isn't a massive amount of oak, but it is definitely detectable. Vanilla is the primary flavor from the barrels. Full body.

Overall: This is a well crafted brew. It's well rounded and smooth. Would recommend for bottle trades, special occasions or cellaring. Enjoy!

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Photo of gueuzedreg
4.14/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

2013 12oz bottle into a CS snifter. Aged in whiskey barrels it says.

A- Transparent through around the edges. Very dark roasty brown. Thin layer of lacing surrounds the glass.

S- I am getting a lot of oak. The S is real dry. Hints of whiskey. Traits of a RIS with charred toffee, dark fruit char, chocolate like smell.

T- This tastes a lot like Odell's Woodcut No. 7. Pretty simple RIS with whiskey notes buried, not too buried as it adds a nice kick.

M- Prairie has M nailed on RIS. The M is pretty thick, some carbonation follows down the throat. I can't complain on the M.

O- A well done whiskey aged RIS. This beer tastes so much like Odell's Woodcut No. 7. I know that currently, Woodcut is available around the Denver area. Makes sense to just drink that instead of trading for this.

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Photo of HuskyinPDX
4.22/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle opened on 11.30.13

A - Pours a very dark brown with a small dark tan head that fades fairly quickly.

S - Oaky, chocolate, coffee, whiskey.

T - Lots of chocolate, with a hint of oak and whiskey. Nice.

D - Good carbonation with a heavy body.

O - Nice balance of chocolate and whiskey. Tasty brew.

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Photo of titty_mcbitty
4.7/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

A: (poured into mini-duvel glass) Pours deep black with little head retention.

S: Getting bourbon right off. It's nice cause the bourbon smell has some chocolate and cherries mixed in perfectly with it.

T: More bourbon than I expected, which is awesome. Must have been aged for a while. I get some dark cherries and raisins with the bourbon. Very pleasant taste. There's also plenty of vanilla, oats, and dark chocolate. Graham cracker with some cinnamon and wood as well. I'm getting some bready notes and some snicker doodle cookies. This is awesome!

M: A nice medium-full. This beer has a velvet-y feel to it as well. It's a desert.

O: Prairie Artisan did a fine job on this one. I didn't think I'd find it at the local beer shop, but luckily they had a few left. I would give this beer an A+ score because it definitely deserves it. It's very well-made.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Poured dark brown, nearly black with a nice tan head with some good retention providing some lacing and a good amount of bubbles.

S: Chocolate, oats, bourbon, vanilla and oh so good.

T: Upfront I get a little bit of marshmellow and chocolate with a hint of caramel and toffee, now this is all meshing with the bourbon barrel presence. Now on the back end I get more oats, bourbon sting but not as dominant as initial taste, some roast, coffee and vanilla

M: Medium bodied, velvety and flavorful. Medium carbonation suits this beer.

O: Very nice beer overall. The bourbon is not overbearing. I would take this over Velvet Merkin anyday.

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Photo of SpeedwayJim
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Big thanks to Jeff for this one. 750ml corked and caged bottle into a Cigar City snifter. Shared with schen9303.

Pours a 1 finger mocha colored head with moderate retention. Beer is thick, opaque and pitch black. Lacing is thick but sticks close to the head. Real thick legs. Solid.

Nose is plum, prunes, chocolate, mocha, roast, leather, molasses and booze. Rich and very deep.

Opens chocolate, molasses and dark fruit. Roast, plum and more dark chocolate in the middle with a background of leather, oak, and wood. Ends chocolate, sweet cane sugar and syrup. Finishes sweet and boozy with the same aftertaste. Nice complexity that pulls together well.

Full bodied with moderate to low carbonation. Slick and warm in the mouth and goes down oily and smooth. Messy finish with a sticky, lingering aftertaste. Exactly what I'm looking for from the style.

My first offering from Prairie is a good one. Great flavor with a nice, supporting body. I'm looking forward to more!

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Photo of IAmJacksHopTongue
4.95/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

C&C bottle into my Crooked Stave snifter.

A: No light passage. Surprisingly high foam/carb for BA - at least 2 fingers. Beautiful latte color head. Lacing and foam stays throughout the whole snifter; pour after pour.

S: LOVE. Chocolate chocolate and dark chocolate. Slight burnt sugar and marshmallow. Take the sweet away from a really high dollar hot chocolate, and you have the nose of Noir.

T: Lots of chocolate (like it was brewed with dark chocolate); exceptionally smooth mouthfeel. Here, the marshmallow comes in. No heat from the alcohol. The creamy-smooth nature of the oatmeal dominates - and I want it to dominate. I really don't have the words; just try it.

O: I had 2 world-class beers tonight: Zombie Dust and Noir. So different; but both amazing for different reasons. I couldn't drink Noir all night, but only because I'd be on the floor. It is amazingly drinkable for such a big beer. I love Bomb! and several other Prairie beers, and the balance of Noir puts it on my top shelf. I find myself trying to slow down and savor, which is good - I want it to last - but difficult.

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Photo of Rutager
3.93/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another thank you to willandperry!!

Appearance. Pours a deep dark brown, black in the glass with over a finger of thick dark tan head, great lacing.

Smell. Smooth bourbon and oaky vanilla, some sweet dark chocolate and a bit of black licorice and coffee.

Taste. Woody whiskey and some cocoa, well roasted dark malts, and a touch of vanilla.

Mouthfeel. Fairly full body, medium+ carbonation.

Overall. A nice barrel aged stout but it doesn't stand out quite like most of the other brews I've had from prairie.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Black with a decent khaki head. Medium khaki head. Good surface foam.

Smell - Whiskey, dark chocolate. Vanilla. Some bright aromas from the booze.

Taste - Whiskey. Not a rich whiskey aroma. Chocolate malt. Some coffee.

Mouthfeel - Boozy. Overcarbonated. Medium bodied.

Overall - Nice, but the whiskey flavor doesn't lend much richness.

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Photo of jegross2
4.48/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Reviewing the Prairie Noir from Prairie Artisan Ales out of Krebs, Oklahoma.

Score: 95

2012 vintage caged and corked bottle served in a Bourbon County Brand Stout Black Friday snifter and enjoyed on 12/10/13.

Appearance: Pours a black coffee color, with highlights of brown at the edges of the body, with a half finger of khaki head that settles to a thin layer that coats the top of the glass. Very good lacing, excellent retention with a slow cascading quality. 5/5

Smell: Roasted oats, caramel malt, coffee grounds, a little brown sugar. Nice light roast backbone. Milk chocolate too. Just a kiss of vanilla, and a very faint bourbon character. A little oak as well. As the beer warms up, a light cereal grain aroma comes out of the woodwork. 4.5/5

Taste: Oats, vanilla extract, oak woodiness upfront, and bitter coffee throughout. Dark and bitter milk chocolate. A lot more wood character than in the nose, but it marries nicely with the dry finish and bitter character. Hint of brown sugar, dried dark fruit and whiskey towards the finish too, with a light burnt quality. Very bitter leaning, with a few mellow sweet notes overlaying. Quite excellent, and not a hint of booziness. 4.5/5

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, minimal carbonation. Thinner than expected for an oatmeal stout. Bitter, lightly roast and dry. Love the bitterness and dryness here. 4.25/5

Overall: An excellent, bitter-forward barrel aged stout with subtle barrel characters than compliment, rather than overpower, the base beer. This was a nice change of pace from the usually sweet barrel aged stout. I will be seeking out another bottle or two when the 2013 vintage releases.

Cost: $15 for a 750 ml bottle.

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Prairie Noir from Prairie Artisan Ales
4.19 out of 5 based on 808 ratings.
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