Barrel-Aged Legion
Community Beer Company

Barrel-Aged LegionBarrel-Aged Legion
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Russian Imperial Stout
Ranked #41
Ranked #738
4.34 | pDev: 7.14%
Community Beer Company
Texas, United States
Barrel-Aged LegionBarrel-Aged Legion
Reviews: 73 | Ratings: 430 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Nugganooch
3.91/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked this one up at Craft & Growler in Dallas, TX circa Dec 2015 based on the reviews.

From the 12oz bottle pour - Stone IRS snifter glass
Unfortunately lost my original notes but from what I recall this one delivers lots of woodsy barel notes and roast char character. Both in the nose and flavor...unlike some other reviews have stated here. Dark blackish-brown body with a nice glossy sheen and a short lived foam head of dark tan suds. I get dark roast, bakers chocolate, tobacco-ish with some lesser notes of dark fruit, vanilla and coconut. There is some inbalance to it overall with a high tannin count and runs a little hot. Overall it's a little weak for me and thin in body for a such a big stout. Would be happy to try another go at this one and update my review.

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Nugganooch from California, Jan 06, 2020
Photo of jngrizzaffi
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a pitch black color with a thin foamy head. Head retention is very mild and lacing is decent. Aroma of bourbon, oak and toffee. Roasty malts on the taste with oak, bourbon and smooth toffee. Heavy bodied and boozy. Moderate carbonation.

retry on 4/26/20 - bourbon has died down. not as boozy. get a little more java in the taste.

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Photo of MattDecker
4.32/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Look: (first off, the bottle looks absolutely regal haha I like it a lot!) Almost black brown pour, dark tan head that sticks around for quote a big
Smell: malt, oaky, rich bourbon smell
Taste: richly roasty, not-so-dsrk chocolate, vanilla, a bit of a smokey char, I could maybe cat h a little coconut if I'm really looking for it, rich!
Feel: full bodied
Overall: a very full bodied stout that does not taste like 11%, it's nice and richly full bodied, I like it but it's not the best imperial bourbon barrel I've had. I think the main craving for me with this beer is for something to be more pronounced or grab you attention. To make up a phrase: it's a journeyman of all trades, master of none.

Said differently, does all the thing I want in bourbon barrel imperial stout, but doesn't have that factor where I say "you have to try this, its really [blank]". (Actually, I would say it's main thing is that char flavor). That being said, I do really like it and don't think anyone would be disappointed with this beer.

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Photo of puck1225
4.41/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured it from a bottle into a tulip glass. Deep dark brown color with a nice brown head and good lacing. Pleasant smells and tastes of dark chocolate and toffee. Flavors of vanilla and caramel. Nice smooth feel. Rich but not in your face, no strong booziness. Very nice beer.

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Photo of mothman
3.56/5  rDev -18%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Bottle. Tan head. Dark brown nearing black color.

A lot of peat and char. Not sure if this is bourbon barrels or scotch whiskey barrels, but definitely tastes like scotch. Some chocolate and light vanilla. It’s okay, but not something I want to drink again.

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mothman from Minnesota, Oct 20, 2019
Photo of Korbynlehr
4.29/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Wow what a wonderful imperial stout! The barrel aged named it hint at coconut with overtones of chocolate. The Abv is not heavy at all...yet it is, just wait.

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Korbynlehr from Kentucky, May 21, 2019
Photo of BigMac59
4.02/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looked very nice poured into a tulip glass.
Not much of a head or lacing.
Nose was OK, but I expected a stronger aroma.
Initial taste was OK, but like some other reviewers have said it seems to grow on you.
You could definitely taste the barrel aging.
Feel was just OK as well.
Like other reviewers I concluded it was a nice imperial stout, but not the one I was expecting based on all the hype.
Definitely not in the same class as Old Rasputin.
Having said that, I generally really like all the beers from Community Beers.

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Photo of BucannonXC5
3.89/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Type: 12-oz. bottle
Glass: 10-oz. clear tulip-like glass
From: The Common Table in Frisco, Texas
Price: $10
Purchased: Dec. 15, 2018
Consumed: Dec. 16, 2018
Reviewed as: Russian Imperial Stout
Misc.: Bottled on Nov. 9, 2016

One beer of many at The Common Table, which was near where I was staying (The Omni) on a recent work trip in Frisco, Texas. Went with a bottle for this one as I was looking for some barrel-aged non-#CraftAdjace stuff. Bottle description called for, “Individual wooden barrels impart distinctly different flavors: vanilla, coconut, honey and toast, as well as any contribution from the barrels’ previous contents. As a craft brewery, we love the varying nuances imparted by each of these amazing barrels, and strive to make each release in this series a unique one! In this batch, we have aged Legion – our popular Russian Imperial Stout – in a variety of bourbon and whiskey barrels. The result is a beautiful marriage of the beer, barrel and spirit, contributing flavors of toffee, vanilla and candied fruits, all mingling with roasty, smooth Legion.”

Poured a pitch black color with 1-to-2 fingers of khaki tan frothy head. No bubbles underneath. Very bad lacing. Average retention. (Sight - 3.25)

Smelled bourbon, toffee, vanilla, oak, leather, caramel, milk chocolate and espresso. Got a little more maple from the bottle. (Smell - 4.25)

Wow. Not good initially on the taste. Leather, oaky wood, toffee, caramel, bourbon, espresso, char wood, molasses, crayon and dark fruit. Grew on me as it warmed. (Taste - 3.75)

Full body. Sticky texture. Average carbonation. Long, warming finish. (Feel - 4.25)

This was very good overall, but nothing I needed to take home with me. (Overall - 3.75)

3.89 | 87 | B+

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BucannonXC5 from California, Dec 29, 2018
Photo of natelocc787
3.65/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Not a great looking pour. Thin. Smell is the best trait this beer has to offer, vanilla, oak and mild bourbon. Feel is thin. Taste is thin, barrel aged stout flavors are there but muted. Not a bad beer but expected more due to the hype around this. Has the feel and taste of a 6.0 abv porter plus typical barrel aged flavors. Not the big beer I was expecting, especially as this price point. Their mosaic ipa is chewier than this. I’ll pass next time, thankful I just got the single. Would gladly accept as an offer somewhere but better beers can be had if one has a choice. Would rate higher if it was 5-6% beer.

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Photo of ilikebeer03
4.04/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours black / deep brown. Half finger of cinnamon head fades quickly leaving ring around the glass. No lacing.
Nose is huge, rich dark chocolate, fresh roasted coffee, roasted malts, caramel,
Coconut, oaky bourbon
Taste follows. Dark chocolate, vanilla, soft bourbon, coconut, dark roasted malt, a bit of tannins. Lingering chocolate, coffee, coconut.
Smooth, and creamy body. Medium plus thickness. Low medium carbonation.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
3.84/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

$ 5.93 (Including tax and discount)/12 oz bottle ($ 0.49/oz) from Spec’s, DeZavala, San Antonio, TX. Reviewed 11/11/18.
Undated bottle. On the label it states “Please check our bottle codes & website for more information on barrels used.” Unfortunately, there is no code on the bottle. Stored at 42 degrees and served at 55 degrees in a hand washed and dried Jester King snifter.
Appearance – 3.75.
Body – Dark brown/black, opaque. When held to the light, still opaque.
Head – Small (Maximum 2.5 cm, aggressive center pour), light tan, dense, diminishing to a three mm ring and a complete thin layer with a rocky island.
Lacing – None.
First pour – Brown, slight haze.
Aroma – 4 - Roasted malt, chocolate, vanillin.
Flavor – 4 - Begins with weak coconut followed by a hint of rum. Some roasted malt appears. No alcohol (11.6%), no diacetyl, no dimethylsulfide.
Palate – 3 – Thin, watery, soft carbonation.
Impression and interpretation – 3.75 – An above average RIS for the price. Not one I will seek out.

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Ozzylizard from Pennsylvania, Nov 11, 2018
Photo of JohnnyHopps
4.31/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance - The beer poured a slick black color with dark mocha bubbles crowning the glass.

Smell - The beer hada sweet boozy nose making it apparent that the beer was not hot.

Taste - The beer was like a boozy chocolate malt. There were notes of fruit leater and prunes as things darkened toward the finish. The beer was not hot, but well balanced.

Mouthfeel - With the carbonation largely gone, the beer was very smooth.

Overall - The beer was a smooth alcoholic chocolate malt. Well done!

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Photo of macrosmatic
4.24/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to eye for sending this bottle! Reviewed from notes. Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Brooklyn Brewery tulip glass. 2016 vintage bottle, consumed 10.1.18.

A: Very dark brown, and looks thick and opaque. A minimal tan head rises, falls to ring of foam, then to absent fairly quickly. Minimal visible carbonation.

S: Whiskey, chocolate, and oak. Dry oak tannins, roasted malts, some vanilla from the barrels. Notes of tobacco, dark fruitiness, and toffee lurk underneath. A nice balanced aroma for a barrel-aged stout...there's no new ground tread here, but there's nothing wrong either.

T: Bourbon or whiskey (sad to say, I can’t tell for sure), and dark roasted malts. Dark baker’s chocolate and cacao. Oak dry tannins, vanilla, and mild char. Dark moist tobacco and toffee. More bourbon at the swallow with dark chocolate, and some lingering roasted bitterness.

M: A good amount of alcohol heat to be sure, but it stays well-integrated. The body is thick but not overly so – there's not much in the way of unfermented sugar or a sticky mouthfeel, but still quite full. Low but as-expected carbonation sensation.

O: A pretty darn solid BA RIS here, with no additives (at least on the label, aside from the barrel). Nice balance and interplay of flavors - bourbon, roast, and woody barrel. Very well executed, and the two years in the fridge I don’t think hurt this one bit. Definitely wouldn’t hesitate to grab another if I saw one about.

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Photo of brentk56
4.02/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours obsidian and a modest bubble show caps the liquid with a finger of beige foam; webby sheets of lace

Smell: Roasted malt, chocolate, honey, coconut and vanilla; the Bourbon is there, but modest

Taste: Honeyed chocolate forward, with roasted flavors, coconut and vanilla emerging; through the middle, the Bourbon makes a somewhat limited appearance though it lingers into the finish

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

Overall: Decent but not in the top echelon for the style

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brentk56 from North Carolina, Aug 24, 2018
Photo of kojevergas
3.25/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Currently #10 on the Top Texas Beers list. I nabbed a 4 pack of this at a beer store in Austin for $17.99 USD plus tax. Bottles are 12 fl oz and made of brown glass.

"Barrel-aged Russian imperial stout." 70 IBU. OG 24.0 P. 11.6% ABV.

HEAD: ~3cm in height. Khaki in colour. Creamy, frothy, thick, and robust, with an impressive ~6-7 minute retention (not too shabby for an 11.6% ABV beer). No lacing sticks to the sides of the glass as the head recedes. Appears soft and inviting.

BODY: Predictably, it's a true-to-style opaque black. No yeast/particulate is visible within.

Appears well-carbonated. Far from unique or special, but generally inviting.

AROMA: Artificial vanilla/vanillin, rich barrel wood (though it's not recognizably oak), honey, a kiss of burnt wood, cream, dark malts, molasses, specialty chocolate malts, fudge, caramel, gooey chocolate, blips of dark fruit, and port/dessert wine.

Aromatic intensity is moderately high. Not boozy, but some alcohol warmth is noticeable. No overt off-notes or yeasty notes are detectable.

TASTE: Gooey dark malt sweetness combines with dessert wine/port-like notes and pomegranate seed to pretty good effect, but the result is a beer of high sweetness - and there's ill enough bitterness to counter it. Caramel, dark malt sweetness, chocolate malt, and bourbon barrel-induced honey layer in additional sweetness, further pushing the brew out of balance.

The barrel is reticent at best, and I have to wonder just how long this spent in barrels and which barrels they were...I suspect a middle-of-the-road bourbon barrel and less than 6 months of aging. There's little here for the discerning drinker in terms of toasted coconut, authentic vanilla, rich barrel sugars, or white oak.

Getting back to the base beer, it's definitely imbalanced, with its prominent notes of gooey dark fruit and dark malt sweetness lacking a bitter counterpart in the form of barrel char, coffee, roasted barley, spice, or the like. But it's not egregious in its imbalance, and I can't help but like it for what it is even if it leaves much to be desired.

Far from amongst the most intricate or subtly executed expressions of the style. The barrel just isn't vivid enough, nor is the base that impressive itself.

No overt hoppy or yeasty notes. No overt off-notes. There's some alcohol warmth, but it's not a hot or boozy brew.

TEXTURE: Gooey, full-bodied, smooth, wet, well-carbonated, chewy, thick/viscous, slightly syrupy.

Not oily, rough, scratchy, harsh, or astringent.

This mouthfeel does little to accentuate the beer's flavours or to elevate the beer as a whole.

OVERALL: I hoped for a stellar brew given this made the Texas Top 10, but then Texas' imperial stouts (barrel aged or not) have always played second fiddle to the likes of those from nearby states sitting on the same shelves...who can justify buying this over Prairie Artisan Ales' vastly superior brews? The barrel character is barely there and the base wasn't great to start with. I'll enjoy finishing off my 4-pack, but $18 plus tax is rather steep for this level of quality (especially when Storm King and Old Rasputin sit comfortably around $10-12 per 4 pack and need no ostensible barrel aging to surpass this). I won't be buying it again, but it's by no means a bad brew in spite of its heavy dessert-like sweetness.

High C+ (3.25) / ABOVE AVERAGE

12.04.17 2nd impression from another bottle:


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kojevergas from Colorado, Dec 04, 2017
Photo of Davepoolesque
4.16/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Vanilla, bit of coconut, toffee, caramel, bitter dark chocolate and oak. Medium to light bodied. Oaky, semi dry finish. Smooth, lower carb sipper. Not bad. Decently balanced.

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Davepoolesque from Massachusetts, Nov 22, 2017
Photo of rypkr
4.09/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Macallan aged. Bottled 11-9-16

L - Teku pour. A ltitle thin during the pour, head is thin, but the lacing is gooey sticky.

S - Underwhelming. Dirt, peat, chocolate, earthiness. God I hope this isn't a hoppy stout they chose to age in scotch barrels...

As it warms it smells more and more chocolaty.

T - Wow that potent, rich, and smokey. It drinks like whiskey neat and lingers on your palate for seemingly decades since your last sip.

Flavors of a grassy-peaty smoke, dark chocolate, oak, ozone, an arid taste of earth like tasting a fresh rain. Faint burnt sugar sweetness

M - pretty dry. The sweetness it dies have is brief and fleeting somewhere in the middle. It hard to say much else about the mouthfeel other than dry. It's not thick nor thin. Fizzy nor flat. Creamy nor watery. Drink pretty average other than dry and lingering on the palate.

O - solid. I like scotch so this was an obvious beer to want to try. But having said that I'm not blown away by it. I'd buy it on the shelf occasionally if it were local maybe. Not a show stopper worth trading for again though

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rypkr from Pennsylvania, Sep 24, 2017
Photo of Rimbimhoot
4.31/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle neck says The Macallan

A: Black with no head
S: Sweet chocolate, peaty Scotch, vanilla, charred oak, brown sugar, maple, smokey
T: Peaty Scotch, dark chocolate, roasty, charred oak, bitter baker's chocolate, cocoa, brown sugar
M: Just into the heavy side
O: Preferred over the Scotch barrel Abyss. Very nice blend of the scotch barrel with the base beer

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Rimbimhoot from Illinois, Apr 30, 2017
Photo of StraightNoChaser
4.25/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This one is a batch 6.
look: deep dark brown like an imp stout ought to look. Some rugby highlights when held to light. Sparse tan head.
smell: Mostly roasty cocoa, some peaty notes.
taste: much like the nose with some nutty notes. Nice peaty notes here. Quite an easy drinker.

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Photo of Sabtos
3.86/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Used motor oil with a finger of dense creamy tan head.

Smell is fresh, oaky bourbon, peppery to the point of almost being jerky spice, with chocolate, vanilla and even hints of maple and coconut. Roasted nuts emerge as it warms.

Taste is woody, but thankfully bourbon is not quite as potent as nose suggests, although it's still pretty forward. I also get Raisinettes--chocolate+prune--vanilla, and cola.

BA Legion has a thick feel, yet not heavy, while tangy and slick,with a bit of a sting on the way down, finishing semi-dry, and getting dryer as it warms.

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Sabtos from Ohio, Dec 24, 2016
Photo of Lochnessmonster
4.43/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

I'm surprised more people aren't talking about this one. Outrageously easy to drink for 11.6%(!), this was a highlight from my recent trip to Texas. Here's hoping this someday gets the credit it deserves!

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.21/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

this beer is big boy! super strong, and really quite heavy on the whiskey aspect, must have been put into freshly drained barrels and housed there for quite some time. the base imperial stout is huge too though, gritty almost from all the dark grains in here, heavy roast and char to it, with a basic nutty complexion and more dried fruit than ever. cherry and raisin and fig all come to mind, not super sweet, but more prominent than these qualities usually are in the style. i get a slice of chocolate fudge in here too, buttery smooth and dense like brownie mix or cake batter. the sweetness wanes as we move towards the finish, the whiskey takes over for it. wet oak, vanilla bean, and hot hot booze wind it down. huge body on this, but only sweet on the front end. the alcohol is a little over the top for me, so this was even more of a slow sipper than it would be naturally, but thats okay because it warms up like a champion. overall just incredibly flavorful beer, and as prominent as the whiskey is, it doesnt overtake the uniqueness of the base stout. extremely well done overall. on tap at the brewery too, always the best way to try something like this!

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Photo of sjantiflow
4.35/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottled 1/19/16
Poured pitch black into a snifter, tan head with moderate lacing. Aromas of molasses, vanilla, chocolate, oak and roasted malts. Bittersweet, fudgy chocolate and bourbon flavors with a medium body, good carb, and some heat. Superb barrel character (Woodford Reserve FYI) and let this one warm up as it really shines!

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sjantiflow from Washington, May 09, 2016
Photo of darktronica
4.3/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottled January 16, 2015. Modest tan-brown head with nice lacing, poured into a teku. Aromas of caramel apple, bittersweet baker's chocolate, vanilla, almond, oak chips, and a hint of tannic dark stonefruit. More bitterness on the tongue, but this becomes less prominent as the beer warms. Marvelous, and a superb value.

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Photo of BeerSamurai34
4.29/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Probably one of the best BA beers that no one is talking about. Super toasty upfront with a good strong stout finish, but only slightly boozy. Really nice lacing and color.

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Barrel-Aged Legion from Community Beer Company
Beer rating: 95 out of 100 with 430 ratings