Monsters' Park - Bourbon Barrel-Aged
Modern Times Beer

Monsters' Park - Bourbon Barrel-AgedMonsters' Park - Bourbon Barrel-Aged
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Style:
American Imperial Stout
Ranked #241
ABV:
13%
Score:
95
Ranked #1,154
Avg:
4.32 | pDev: 12.27%
Reviews:
26
Ratings:
182
From:
Modern Times Beer
 
California, United States
Avail:
Rotating
Wants
  47
Gots
  48
SCORE
95
World-Class
Monsters' Park - Bourbon Barrel-AgedMonsters' Park - Bourbon Barrel-Aged
Notes: SRM: 50

IBU: 60

Final Gravity: 1.022

Malts: Barley, Oats, Chocolate Malt, Midnight Wheat, Crystal 120, roasted Barley, Black Barley.

This is Monsters' Park, our hulking cantankerous imperial stout, aged in fragrant, oaky bourbon barrels. The Barrel character is immediately evident on the nose and only grows more intense in the flavor. Notes of vanilla, caramel and molasses meld with the huge roast character of Monsters' Park to create a veritable superhero of flavors (like earth, fire, wind, water, and heart, even). The beer's aroma and flavor reach their peak when the beer is allowed to warm up a bit, so don't get all antsy and drink it right out of the fridge.
Reviews: 26 | Ratings: 182 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of rex_4539
4.56/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

L: Very dark brown color, quarter finger light brown head, thin lacing, light carbonation.

S: Oak, bourbon, alcohol, chocolate.

T: Oak, bourbon, tons of alcohol, chocolate, sweet. Delicious!

F: Full bodied, full flavored.

O: I'm not a huge fan of high alcohol volume but this beer is just delicious.

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rex_4539 from Greece, May 26, 2019
Photo of rodbeermunch
4.04/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Had this during the tail end of a warm spring at BeerNV when they did a quasi tap takeover (5 varieties of these Monsters' Park beers). Poured black. Small 1/4" brown head. Rich notes of bourbon and chocolate malt all over this one, images of that boozy german chocolate cake going on.

Taste is much the same, loads of chocolate and bourbon notes. Straight up what you would expect. A little bit of oat usage probably tames the bitterness and heft a bit in the mouth feel, which does a great job at being drinkable and hiding the abv. The oak is there, but it isn't the kind that imparts vanilla. Heavily viscous without being so much so that is a chore to drink 5 oz of the stuff. Not sweet at all. Beer spent a good amount of time in the barrel to impart this much bourbon. So its pretty much the industry standard for this type of beer. Similar to Eclipse, its great to drink on tap, but bottle prices are at such a premium, you can pretty much settle for another beer extremely similar that is half the price.

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Photo of Antg8989
4.55/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Woody with cinnamon (which I strangely love in a stout). Pours black, no lacing. Feel is soft with medium carbonation. Overall, a great BBA stout to be had.

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Antg8989 from New Jersey, Sep 12, 2018
Photo of yesterdayfaraway
4.27/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

L: pours black with a film of brown head
S: big strong hot bourbon
T: big barrel with sharper boozy bourbon flavors.
F: medium thickness, boozy feel and warming heat.

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Photo of flagmantho
4.18/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this beer on-tap in a tulip at Special Brews in Lynnwood, WA.

Appearance: rich dark black with a thin layer of dark tan foam. Color is outstanding.

Smell: very sweet with vanilla, Bourbon and chocolate. Lots of alcohol fruitiness; tons of depth and character. Great.

Taste: sweet, Bourbon, vanilla and caramel. Toffee notes as well. Plenty of alcohol heat - just what you're looking for in a Bourbon-barrel stout.

Mouthfeel: medium-rich body with a good carbonation and smoothness.

Overall: whoooo this thing has a lot of alcohol. It's good, but I couldn't drink a ton of it.

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flagmantho from Washington, Oct 23, 2017
Photo of John_M
4.24/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap Roscoe's in PDX the other day.

The beer pours a blackish brown color with good head retention and considerable sticky lacing. The nose is impressive in this beer, showcasing considerable bourbon, dark chocolate, vanilla and light coffee. The combination of chocolate, coffee and bourbon imparts a light leather aroma as well. The flavor profile replicates the nose pretty closely in this fairly sweet, rich beer. Mouthfeel is fairly full, and the finish is sweet and long. Considering the abv., the alcohol is very well integrated into the flavor profile. You can certainly tell this is a big beer, but there's no heat or bite from the alcohol.

Excellent stuff. The best thing I've had from Modern Times so far.

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John_M from Oregon, May 29, 2017
Photo of jakecattleco
4.32/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottle from 2016 into a snifter.

L: Pours jet black with a minimal ring of white-grey head that never fully dissipates and left no lacing.

S: Nose is mostly barrel char, vanilla, bourbon, followed up by what I would describe as a half-eaten cherry cordial. Some sweetness, some chocolate, some dark cherry. The cherry cordial nose faded as the beer warmed.

T: Follows the nose to a "T". The cherry cordial aspect is a bit more prominent than on the nose. Finishes with a bit of lingering sweetness, and some heat from the ABV. Barrel softened up some of the sweetness of the base beer for my palate.

F: Slick, thinner bodied, and low carbonation. A bit of burn on the lips from the ABV.

O: A) just damn glad my bottle wasn't infected; and B) very much how I imagined this BA effort on MP. Glad I got to try it, it was a delicious beer.

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jakecattleco from California, May 08, 2017
Photo of Red5StandingBy
3.17/5  rDev -26.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Poured from 22oz into Spiegelau Stout glass. No bottle date however there is vintage date on the back, bottom of the label, this is a 2016.

L: Black with faint ruby edges, finger width tan head fades into a theater.

S: Bourbon, chocolate, oaky, vanilla, caramel. Vastly overpowered with bourbon.

T: Vastly overpowered with bourbon. Faint chocolate, caramel and vanilla but to be honest this needs to be aged a lot longer for this to be enjoyable. If you want bourbon then just drink bourbon.

F: Medium body, good carbonation. Dry.

O: If I hadn't paid as much as I did for this then I would pour this out.

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Photo of Damian
4.51/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Drank from a 1 pt. 6 fl. oz. bottle purchased at Pemberton Farms, Cambridge, MA
Bottle Edition 2 2016
Served in a snifter

Dark brown appearance, bordering on black. The shimmery, oily looking body was topped by a frothy, finger tall, caramel colored crown that fell to a bubbly collar. Minimal drippy lacing cascaded down the glass.

The aroma was solid but fairly typical for the style initially. Good amount of caramel and brown sugar sweetness. Moderately roasty. Strong dark fruit notes. Raisins and prunes for sure. As the beer sat, the nose really intensified. Smooth, fragrant bourbon notes came forth. Loads of vanilla. Slightly boozy. Both the bourbon and the vanilla became even more pronounced later in the session.

The flavor profile was terrific and quite similar to the nose. Strong caramel and brown sugar notes up front. Sticky toffee pudding came to mind. Big vanilla presence. Really smooth and appropriately sweet. Moderately roasty in the center. Super raisiny. Bourbon notes also came through. For a 13% ABV beer, the alcohol was remarkably well hidden. More roastiness on the back end and in the finish. Big oaky, bourbony notes and a subtle caramel-like sweetness lingered after the swallow.

Solid mouthfeel. Creamy, slick and smooth on the palate. Medium-full for the style. The liquid contained a fine, moderate, tongue blanketing effervescence.

I drank a fresh bottle of this beer and remember not loving it, but this six-month-old bottle drank like a dream. Both the flavor and the aroma were amazingly complex and well balanced. Be sure to serve this beer at cellar temp and give it plenty of time to warm up in order to enjoy all its amazing nuances.

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Damian from Massachusetts, Apr 24, 2017
Photo of BWood
3.81/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

2016 edition with about a year on it.

L: no real head production here.

S: pretty nice bourbon smell. Pretty much it.

T: base beer and barrel work well. It's a good beer but not excellent. No single flavors jump out except the bourbon. But it's good.

F: much thinner than I would like.

O: fair brew. Not worth the price when you can get other beers that are much better. One thing is it does hide the abv very well.

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BWood from California, Apr 08, 2017
Photo of TrilliumFan
4.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a fantastic Bourbon Barrel Aged stout. Nearly as good as Parabola and if allowed to age, might actually be its equal. Definitely get it if you see it.

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TrilliumFan from Massachusetts, Nov 15, 2016
Photo of gibgink
1.37/5  rDev -68.3%
look: 4 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 1.25 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 1

This beer was infected. Not as bad as the Coconut and Cocoa barrel aged version, but still not enjoyable nonetheless. A bit disappointing, as their other offerings I've had have been really good.

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gibgink from Missouri, Nov 01, 2016
Photo of IvoryFoxhole
4.2/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Few months old 25 oz. bottle, properly cared for. Poured into Kane tulip glass.

L: Dark black with 2F light tan head, good retention, no lacing, but leaves long-standing ring.

S: Oak and bourbon, roasted malts

T: Barrel and bourbon assert themselves up front, roasted malts, dark dried fruit sweetness, unsweetened chocolate, a little bit of alcohol heat on the finish

F: Medium, maybe even on the light side of medium, body. Light carbonation, but noticeable. Very good construction. Balance not quite there yet.

O: Could do with some aging at home, I think, but it's nice now. Just a bit boozy and while flavors are good, I could see them melding together and getting softer over time.

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IvoryFoxhole from Virginia, Oct 15, 2016
Photo of DVMin98
4.45/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice dark color. Small amount of carbonation. Lots of chocolate, bourbon, etc on nose and palate. Not the biggest fan on the body. Would like it to be a bit thicker, but overall a really nice beer.

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DVMin98 from North Carolina, Aug 19, 2016
Photo of Tommo
4.35/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Everyone really liked this. Was much better than the rum variants i have had before. Good big full bodied stout with just a bit of sweetness to hold together the bourbon and bitterness. excellent

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Tommo from Texas, Aug 06, 2016
Photo of dpgoblejr
4.93/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours dark with a red hue on the edges. Not much of head or lacing. Aroma of vanilla, bourbon, and chocolate. Tastes of caramel, vanilla, oak, cocoa, and bourbon. Medium to almost full feel with everything coming together. Overall, an extremely smooth barrel aged stout.

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dpgoblejr from New Hampshire, Jul 24, 2016
Photo of Kevinpitts
4.3/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Really good barrel aged stout. Nothing sets it apart from other barrel aged stouts however which is why I didn't rate it higher. Still a great beer.

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Kevinpitts from Illinois, Jul 17, 2016
Photo of darktronica
4.41/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Lots of roasted dark chocolate, vanilla, and marshmallow in a thick, syrupy concoction. Good barrel character, with a nice warmth to the booziness that lets you know it's serious without overwhelming the rest of the flavors. Really well done.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.35/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

thanks to Jose for this bottle received in trade we enjoyed for our Annual Birthday Stout tasting that my brother and I plan each year.

The color is black as night with thick 2 finger tan head with average sized bead. The smell has a significant amount of sweet malt with a nice bourbon aroma too there is a subtle alcohol scent but it doesn't obscure the vanilla of the bourbon barrel and roast in the malt aroma. The feel is very smooth a full feeling big stout with moderately sweet texture yet the alcohol and barrel elements keep it from becoming a cloying mouthfeel.

The flavor is great - there is a complexity in the taste of malt flavor with slight toffee and subtle roast barley yet the bourbon barrel aging kicks it up a notch from the base with a nice vanilla character which balances the dark malt that has some raisin-like sweet and fruity elements yet overall the flavors work together for a rich and intense stout. Overall this was a memorable beer among many we enjoyed I was pleased with how the bourbon blended and was great to be able to compare with the base -You could not tell it is a 13% stout even though it has plenty of bourbon smoothness.

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Slatetank from Pennsylvania, Jul 03, 2016
Photo of raynmoon
4.26/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Nice Bourbon barrel aged stout. Nothing spectacular.

Overall, it lacks sweetness to bring more balance. Oak and heat dominate on the flavor, with some nice cocoa and vanilla in the background. Mouthfeel is medium to full.

Again, not up with the big boys, but still really nice. Definitely NOT worth the $25+ price tag. Skip it.

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raynmoon from Colorado, Jun 26, 2016
Photo of Hop_God
4.38/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

A: deep espresso Near black. Deep opaque haze. Medium tan to caramel small round bubbles.

S: chocolate milk. Deep cocoa powder. Booze. Vanilla. Oak. Maple syrup. Chocolate syrup. Dark fruits.

T: bourbon. Chocolate milk. Cocoa. Booze. Subtle bitterness. Candied fruits.

F: soooo smooth. Creamy like milk. Soft light mouthfeel like whipped cream. Clean finish. Good thickness on the palate

O: while not as good as the coconut variant, still quite amazing.

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Hop_God from California, Jun 17, 2016
Photo of breadwinner
1.4/5  rDev -67.6%
look: 3 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Always like the look of MT's BA stuff, they manage to leave a light ring of tan foam that lets you know you're drinking beer, not motor oil. Of course, you can't judge a book...because the rest of the beer is solidly in the middle of BA stout pack. Pleasant enough nose, bourbon barrel notes, light vanilla, touch of alcohol, and a solid vein of chocolate. If MT's BA stuff is consistently pretty in the glass, it also seems to have a persistent astringent note, sometimes more than others. Here, it's light in the nose but more pronounced on the palate, almost like the type/level of roasted malt is too much. The feel is heavy but not soft, if that makes any sense, and it amplifies the astringency, sort of pitting roasted malt and malt sweetness against each other. There's still some decent barrel contribution of vanilla that tries to smooth things out, but doesn't quite get there. If you're a BA stout fan, this'll do the job well enough, I guess, but plunking down a thirty spot for it seems nuts.

(Update: Sadly suffering a similar fate to the coconut/cocoa nib version, this one appears infected and headed down the wrong path. Recent bottle opened had that trademark tartness, prickly mouthfeel/carb thing going on. Leave review above for beer as intended but updating score to reflect infection issues.)

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breadwinner from California, Jun 07, 2016
Photo of dar482
4.11/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

The aroma offers spicy bourbon, oak, hints of vanilla, chocolate shavings, hints of dates and cherries.

The flavor is very spice and anise forward as that lingers throughout the experience onto some bourbon that burns on the back end. The beer lacks some sweetness, but still holds a velvety medium plus mouthfeel.

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dar482 from New York, May 16, 2016
Photo of Stevedore
4.43/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

650ml bottle, served in a minisnifter glass.

Pours a dark black body, one finger thick mocha head, good retention, not much lacing. Smells of dark chocolate, mocha, milk chocolate, bourbon, a bit of smoke. Intense chocolate fudge going on here. Flavour is hefty milk chocolate. Espresso, some chocolate fudge, bourbon. A lot of fudge. Mouthfeel is medium-fuller bodied, a bit creamy and fudgy, with bitter dark chocolate on the finish. A wonderful barrel-aged stout, and again a big improvement on the base. Seems to be a beer that does much better in barrels than without.

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Stevedore from Wisconsin, Feb 29, 2016
Photo of mctizzz
4.42/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Solid BA stout, not great, but holds its own. I can't help but want to normalize the score relative to price. Definitely enjoyable but $26 for a bomber means this is the last mobster park for me. Mega Black House was awesome (not BA but probably more enjoyable) and half the price.

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mctizzz from California, Sep 13, 2015
Monsters' Park - Bourbon Barrel-Aged from Modern Times Beer
Beer rating: 95 out of 100 with 182 ratings