Berkshire Bourbon Barrel Scotch Ale
Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.

Berkshire Bourbon Barrel Scotch AleBerkshire Bourbon Barrel Scotch Ale
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Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy
4.31 | pDev: 8.58%
Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.
Massachusetts, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Berkshire Bourbon Barrel Scotch AleBerkshire Bourbon Barrel Scotch Ale
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Reviews: 114 | Ratings: 137 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of hoptheology
hoptheology from South Dakota

4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2007 vintage sent in from connecticutpoet.

Deep, rich mahogany-caramel color with a thin ring of head forming and receding to slight bubbles on the top.

Aroma is so sticky - sweet caramel, molasses, fig, prune, smoked malts, smokey jerky, crisp cracker, bourbon.

Flavor is full of goodness. Lots of nice cherry presence, with coconut, vanilla, caramel, bourbon, toasted bread, french toast, maple, and lard.

Feel is not really all that exciting but it works. Kinda thin, with a busy carbonation, not much body, cuts like a knife, here and gone. No creamy texture, no real body. Boozy dryness on the finish.

Overall, this beer is really really good. The age has held up well (11+ years). This was a real occasion to open it, for personal reasons. Good stuff.

Jul 14, 2018
Photo of AndyAvalanche
AndyAvalanche from Massachusetts

5/5  rDev +16%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow, can't believe I'm drinking this, I think it's my first ever whale and after all these years here I am drinking it. Huge shout out to JJ, thank you kind sir!

22 oz. bomber poured into my Berkshire Nortic Pint Glass. A fairly hard pour brings about a thick local eggshell colored head with very small bubbles. Great lacing. The liquid is darker than expected, sort of a mahogany brown, slightly hazy but you can still somewhat see through it. Looks like the carbonation has been affected over the years, but great looking beer all around.

Smells outstanding. Grain bill is perfect here. Hearty brown bread drizzled with natural honey, figs, plumbs,dates and some dehydrated apples with the skins. Hint of both sweet, smokey, and earthy wood on the back end.

Best tasting Scotch Ale I've ever had, hands down. All of the above mentioned aromas translate into the flavor department. There is just a plethora of flavors going on here. Hearty bready, with some earthy fruitiness. The only difference is that the apple skin flavors make me think of red apples where the aromas make me think it could be any apple skin, either way it's nothing to complain about. Excellent balance of sweetness and bitterness. Somehow this beer manages to be slightly smokey without it being overwhelming in any way, even if you don't like smokey beers (which schotch ales should have on some level) this beer is still for you.

Mouthfeel is great. It's sort of a heavy medium feel. Great balance with it being difficult to determine whether it's more sweet than bitter or vice versa because this beer is big all around. Pretty smooth with just the right amount of earthy bitterness at the finish and also some warmth at the end. Great drinkability, I'm crushing this even though I'm trying to savor it.

Overall there is absolutely nothing not to like about this beer other than it's not more readily available. This beer has been retired for quite some time now, and I believe it is about 8 years old at this point. Hats off to Berkshire, I think they should brew it again if they can. Well done. Another shout out to JJ, you're the man for this hookup, my first white whale!

Jun 23, 2016
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stakem from Pennsylvania

3.92/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bomber into a snifter. The brew appears a clear mahogany color with a tan head.

The smell includes a hint of old dusty grain, fruity bourbon slight alcohol feel and a mild tang to it.

The taste is sweet with caramel malt, mild dusty oxidation and tangy bourbon. The alcohol becomes a little noticeable as it warms up.

This is medium bodied, moderately carbonated and for being 8 years old this has held up fantasticly.

May 15, 2015
Photo of joe1510
joe1510 from Illinois

4.52/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

22oz Bomber

I received this in a trade awhile back with the man himself brewandbbq, thanks again Jeff! Berkshire's Bourbon Barrel Scotch Ale has a somewhat murky mahogany body as it fills my snifter. The red glistens with a caramel hue when backlit. Two fingers of beige head form on the pour and falls to a robust one finger cap that has great staying power and a ton of cling along the glass. Great looking drink lines get left behind each sip. This is one impressive looking drink.

The Scotch ale has notes of peat, caramel, toffee, a surprising nuttiness on deep pulls and a black pepper spiciness that's barely noticeable. Now think of all that deliciousness wrapped in a big fat bourbon barrel like pigs in a blanket. The barrel matches the intensity of the Scotch ale perfectly with just enough character to play along instead of take over. Semi sweet bourbon, pure vanilla, and smooth buttery oak all round out the beautiful nose on this big brew.

The nose couldn't have been anymore right on than what it was. The actual beer has a great peat smokiness that plays perfectly with the somewhat sweet bourbon character from the barrel. Toffee more so than caramel keep the maltiness pushing through as notes of vanilla and buttery oak coat the tongue. The nuttiness and spiciness are both afterthoughts in the flavor but add even more depth. This is one delicious beer; each sip gets better and better.

A slow rolling body manages to coat my tongue on each and every sip. The body is on the lighter side of heavy with a velvety smooth feel and barely noticeable carbonation. The carbonation or lack there of, allows this beer to work its magic over every single tastebud.

The sheer size of this brew along makes it a sipper, add the barrel aging and it's a super sipper, or so you'd think. This beer goes down so incredibly easy for the size that it's mind boggling. Seriously, one bomber is not enough.

I would love to see this beer get made again and I'm about to search out some more. I can't give this brew enough credit. The depth is huge and every aspect is perfectly integrated. I can't thank you enough for giving me the chance to sample this brew Jeff!

Reviewed: 3/21/08

Aug 31, 2013
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aasher from Indiana

4.42/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rempo (Mark) just left this in my fridge because he saw it on my Wants list. What an incredibly generous individual!

This one pours a full bodied, dark and dirty, muddy creek brown in color with a slight off white lacing around the glass. The nose is big, rich, and malty with notes of vanilla, butterscotch, oak, bourbon, molasses, and caramel. Wowzers! It's uber complex. The flavors are spectacular as well. It is very rich and flavorful. There is a lot of vanilla, sorghum, and molasses with nice levels of oak and bourbon. The bourbon character is just right and I'm glad there is that much character left. It drinks large and full in body with a nice, resonating aftertaste. This one is a gem. I'm eternally grateful for this bottle. Thanks again Mark!

Nov 23, 2012
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starrdogg from District of Columbia

4.5/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Jon for sharing this long-time Want.

Pours a nice reddish-brown with a thin white head and minimal lacing. Smell is very interesting, a mix of bourbon, dark fruit and heavy malt, maybe a little bit of tartness too. Wow, this flavor is awesome and unique. The bourbon and oak are very prominent, but they mix nearly perfectly with the fruity, malty and almost vinous scotch ale base. I've never had a beer that tastes quite like this, but I'm really impressed. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with nice carbonation. Overall this is a really fantastic scotch ale, right up there with the Bourbon Big Sound as my favorite of the style, but in a very different way. Very happy to have gotten to try this one.

Apr 14, 2012
Photo of bamadog
bamadog from Ohio

4.02/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I got this in one of my earliest trades a couple of years ago, and just now getting around to cracking it. I figured that much time shouldn't hurt anything this big with some time in barrels on it either. Review is from notes taken on 1/27/2012 and poured from the bottle to a snifter.

Appearance: Pour looks like murky home made apple cider; starts with a one finger creamy light tan head that fades relatively quickly to a thin and uneven skim with a creamy/foamy ring around the surface; as mentioned, body is murky and really can't be seen into, but on the sides you can quick streams of tiny bubbles; a swath and patchy lacing is left behind.

Smell: Quite nice, and there is still a bit of bourbon kick to the nose as well; plenty of caramel maltiness and a touch of smokey peat; alcohol rings through clearly and there is a sweet vanilla presence as well; nose is quite robust and doesn't disappoint.

Taste: Also very good, and there is a bit of an acidic apple-like flavor, not quite sure where it comes from; touch of oak; bourbon-like alcohol is there as well as the nose alluded to; caramel malts and the vanilla rolls in, likely from the barrel.

Mouthfeel: Body is of medium weight, and a touch slick; carbonation is present and soft, keeps the body smooth enough; a thick, oily and sticky coating is left all over the palate; belly is left especially warm.

Overall: Definitely a sipper, but one I wouldn't mind getting through a couple times of years; a nice set of flavors, and while it's not the biggest beer I've sat through, the presence of alcohol keeps me sipping in moderation.

Jan 28, 2012
Photo of AgentZero
AgentZero from Illinois

3.58/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I wish people would stop making these beers so I could stop drinking them. Barrel Aged Scotch Ale, braced for yuck.

A - Caramel/amber colored beer with a bit of a beige head that faded to a fairly consistent cap and left some lace down the sides.

S - Thankfully not as peaty as a lot of these, I just can't get into the peatiness of the Scotch Ale for whatever reason, although I always liked peaty scotch, go figure. Some bourbon, little caramel and vanilla, molasses, and a hint of butter.

T - Tastes about like the nose, with the bourbon coming a little bit stronger than expected. Some decent caramel, vanilla, oak, barrel, molasses, butter. All mixed in there without getting too terribly sweet.

M - Fairly smooth with lower carbonation.

O - Not a bad beer, pretty easy to get down actually given that it's not a style I care for. Not bad.

Jul 25, 2011
Photo of levifunk
levifunk from Wisconsin

4.8/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I was planning on opening this bottle for my birthday. Invited a few friends over, and what do you know Chris (seeswo) brought over a bottle as a gift. Cheers man!

Poured into a thistle glass. Gotta do it right!

s - this beer smells amazing. Oak and vanilla are there from the bourbon barrel, but it isn't overpowering. Caramel sweetness and ester.

t - I've had most every Bourbon Barrel aged Scotch Ale out there and this is by far the most balanced. Scotch ales are so sweet and high in ABV to begin with that the bourbon barrel aging tends to be too much. This has certainly benefited from age, but also the bourbon isn't overpowering....although is definitely predominant. The Scotch ale underneath is very good as well. Caramel sweetness, dark fruits, and a healthy amount of roasted malts.

Jul 11, 2011
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79 from New York

4/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 03/27/11 notes. Shared at a local DC tasting.

a - Pours a mahogany brown color with an inch of off white head and light carbonation evident.

s - Smells light bourbon, oak vanilla, caramel malts, and some sugar or molasses. Smells a bit sweet.

t - Tastes of bourbon, oak, vanilla, caramel malts, molasses, toasted malts. More bourbon than the nose but not as sweet, a slight step up in my opinion.

m - Medium body and light to moderate carbonation.

d - Overall a very nice scotch ale. WOuld like to have again sometime.

Apr 01, 2011
Photo of Gambrinus1184
Gambrinus1184 from Connecticut

4.35/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served on-tap at the Berkshire Brewing Co. in a plastic sample cup.

A: Poured a dark, mahogany brown color with a sudsy head of tan foam. Light brown and ruby highlights are shown off the brew.

S: Smells rich with a sweet phenol aroma. Like bourbon aged in wooden barrels.

T: A deep blend of rich, roasted caramel and toffee malts come through at first, with a slightly bitter malt and alcoholic flavor towards the middle. Lavish flavors of smoky, barrel-aged malts are the showcase of this robust wee heavy. A fine sipper indeed.

M: Mouthfeel is full bodied and quite smooth, despite a noticeable pinch from the alcohol.

D: A very fine sippin' brew and one that would make a great bomber to share as a dessert beer. Heavy handed malt profile with loads of smoky, liquor-like flavors and an ABV nearing 10% ensure a good investment for a beer worth relaxing with.

Mar 23, 2011
Photo of ccrida
ccrida from Oregon

4.67/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber (thx MacDomer!) poured into my Delirium snifter, Berkshire's Bourbon Barrel Scotch Ale is garnet with a creamy tan head that leaves scattered foam.

Smell is dominated by the bourbon, some coconut and vanillin from the wood, with a nice sweetness from the grain. I really like the bourbon, the caramel sweetness plays well with the wood, but it's not at all hot, not even ethanol let alone fusels.

Taste is very nice, very vinous, the lush malt, bourbon and oak are very well integrated (I think I've cellared this for about 6-8 months, and am not sure how old it was pre-trade, but it seems like a fairly new looking embossed bottle). Tough to get much of the nuances of the nice malt base in a fine wee heavy due to the barrel character, it could be any type of well made strong ale, but the fact is, it's delicious. I'm like the hint of grape that I'm getting that flirts with a Belgian ester. Awesome beer, sper smooth.

Mouthfeel is slick, smooth, fine, soft carbonation, off-dry.

Drinkability is excellent. I'm really impressed with this beer. I will seek this out again on my travels, and recommend fans of bourbon barrel strongs do the same.

Feb 01, 2011
Photo of PEBKAC
PEBKAC from New York

4.64/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The last of the stash. What patience. Sat on this for two years+. My favorite scotch ale to date. Thanks Hougabooms. Thanks Al. Thanks Chris. :)

Actually, I was a little worried about souring, considering that the imperial stout released the following year went ugly in just a few short months. Very thankful that this didn't turn.

Opened this one up around 7:30am while waiting for the doors to open at Southampton. Was warm enough to ditch the gloves even. Rounded pint glass. Shared 3 ways.

Recent bottle mixed with old notes:

Mahogany-colored brew, but darker maybe. Not quite clear, but no floaties either. Short lived inch of tan head, kept alive by a constant swirl.

Lightheartedly smoked peat, maple, bourbon, brown sugar, & some lactose(to me anyway). Alcohol is a bit shy, hidden underneath all that sugar, contradicting some other reviews.

Tea & sweet bourbon up top. Tobacco. Vanilla & a slight barrel twang that I needed help discovering. Some interesting amaretto-like nuances that maybe made me miss the twang at first. Not as sweet as it smells.

Carbonation fell apart half way through the glass, though it was decent at the start. Feel has some heft to it, but was overall a touch thin. Alcohol was as advertised, & not much of a deterrent honestly.

I love this beer & will miss it so.

Jan 31, 2011
Photo of msubulldog25
msubulldog25 from Oregon

4.29/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle, sent in days of yore by BanditBrewingCo, and poured to a pint glass. 'Brewed Exclusively for Julio's Liquors' - no date. Poured at 'cellar temperature' = perfect.

Another fine silk-screened creation of a label by the folks at Berkshire; this one a bison stepping on a set of bagpipes, sandwiched between images of the two brewers. Sophisticated, yet quirky: yes.

A: Hazy with LOTS of hanging fallout, a fine but discernible 'snow globe' of hanging bits when held to light. Pour is a deep chestnut brown with a filtered shine of copper. Short eggshell head, creamy but less than a finger. Retention is only fair; a minute later there's just a hugging ring and a crescent of sheen. Good, but not great, lace - yet the warmer it gets, the more it seems to stick in torn sheets.

S: A 'WOW' aroma, bourbon is prevalent but used smartly. Sweet and woody, a dessert-like scent of peat and smoked wood and a naughty booziness. There's ample malt roast and a sugared nuttiness - all things I could smell all night, truth be told.

T: Starts with a -whew- bourbon-forward flavor, loads of spiced-barrel and grain/alcohol sweetness. As quickly, the vanilla/toffee notes of a fine Scotch Ale catch up; there's a dose of citrus and even the odd tang of ripe cherries, but the sweet and heavily malty cereal grain shines, with a brassy and sappy 'barrel' flavor underneath. Very, very good.

M: Creamy smoothness, a velvety silt that sticks a little yet thins given time. Medium body and a very stealthy alcohol warming.

D: Thanks to Alan for the chance to try this; I'd LOVE the chance to have more. Sure, the bourbon is a little forward, but -well- I like bourbon a lot, so no harm, no foul. Pretty drinkable, albeit not entirely traditional for a Scotch/Wee Heavy.

Oct 31, 2010
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drabmuh from Maryland

4.1/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received in a recent trade, part of my sisyphitic task of drinking the #1 beer for each style so here it goes! The current #1 Scotch Ale / Wee Heavy!

Beer is brown and hazy with a thin broken head that leaves some lacing on the glass.

Aroma is strong with bourbon, not much else. Smells like a bourbon beer.

Beer is thin and strong with bourbon. A dry finish. Its not as peaty as I expected. I"m drinking this a little too cold. As it warms the beer gets better and more complex. I like the beer, its really drinkable for a high alcohol beer. I would repeat it.

Oct 23, 2010
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Thorpe429 from Illinois

4.22/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Pete for opening up a bottle of this at a tasting a while back. Reviewed from notes.

Pours a dark shade of amber with a bit of an off white head that sits with a tiny ring of lace throughout. Nose brings good chunks of bourbon and caramel malt along with notes of oak, vanilla, and molasses. Taste mixes the bourbon and a level of molasses-like dry sweetness quite well with some of the barrel aging present in addition to the bourbon. Feel is nice and smooth with lower levels of carbonation. Drinks well and I glad I got to try this--I love being surprised by beers I've never heard much about.

Oct 14, 2010
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nickd717 from California

4.3/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bomber thanks to Arbitrator. Thanks to Arbi for another great -bal aged tick.

Pours a brilliant yet dark clear amber color with a one-finger off-white head that leaves a ring.

Sweet caramel and -bal aroma with a little peat smoke, toffee, bourbon, and toast.

The flavor is great, really complex and tasty if a little sweet. Sweet caramel and toffee malt notes, toast, -bal, vanilla, maple syrup, bourbon, maybe some fruits. Great beer, lots to it.

Smooth on the mouthfeel with only mild booziness and medium-low carbonation.

Really great -bal aged scotch ale. I should be getting the Gude Greg's version soon and I'm looking forward to it.

Oct 09, 2010
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maximum12 from Minnesota

4.1/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Cakanator for sending me this, among other Berkshire brews, in a long-ago trade. Yes, it's the monthly installment of 'clean out the back of the fridge/cellar'. Split with my BA/Scotch Ale loving wife whilst watching the Twins paste the Yankees in Game 1 of the ALDS.

Pours with more floaties than the weird October Mississippi flood of 'aught ten, & a similar stirred, muddy, dark red color. Pretty flat. Smell is rich meeting of scotch, barrel, oak, & a particular lack of hype. Nice.

I wonder why Berkshire doesn't get more press, this is a tasty BA Scotch that's far enough under the radar to be burrowing - with an "A" rating at present. Delicious intersection of bourbon & that peculiar scotchiness of a good scotch ale, almost like a good mixed drink. All the requisite stuff is in here: loads of caramel, toffee, green shoots of vanilla, & a full half-cup or so of straight cane sugar dissolved in the mix (maybe that's the floaties).

I'm wavering, but this is an excellent brew, even long after it's release. Would have loved to have dug it out of the massive pile earlier, or had another long ago to compare it to, but beggars/choosers/etc. Miles better than the sadly infected Berkshire BA Imperial Stout. Love to see this one again.

Oct 07, 2010
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jrallen34 from Illinois

3.1/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottle shared by Alex into a tulip...Pours a really light and watery brown, pretty clear. Light watery head is gone right away...The aroma is super strong way to much scotch from start to finish, comes across as black sharpie as well. Scotch, wood, and ash. Too strong to smell often...The taste comes across slightly less alcoholic showing off some of the bourbon qualities bringing in nice oak and a little vanilla. The scotch is still way to strong to make this at all drinkable.

Not sure how this is an A beer, roundly disparged at our tasting.

Oct 04, 2010
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MasterSki from Canada

3.36/5  rDev -22%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

I think I got this from Reagan1984, but I can't totally remember. Served in a Lost Abbey rastal teku.

A - Pours with a half-finger of foam that quickly dissipates to a thin ring and some big bubbles. Transparent caramel brown.

S - Barrel, wood, fusel alcohol, harsh bourbon, burnt sugar, and some light smoke and char. This is nostril-singing and hasn't mellowed out at all.

T - Caramel, vanilla, light diacetyl, cotton candy, brown sugar, and tons of barrel. Less harsh than the nose, but still somewhat cloying.

M - Smooth medium-full body, with some obvious alcohol heat. Low carbonation, with a tannic dry finish.

D - It was a struggle to get through 4oz of this stuff. Way too sweet and boozy for my tastes, and I generally like most bourbon-barrel aged beers. Apparently I'm in the minority on this one...

Oct 03, 2010
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hoppymcgee from Maine

4.32/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Bill for this bottle! Poured from a 22oz. bomber into a tulip glass.

A: Dark brown with a small ring of white foam and not much lacing/stickiness.

S: The best feature of this beer. I was inundated with boozy woozy bourbon, toffee, vanilla, and walnuts.

T: Aged bourbon, oak, and caramel/candi sugars. I also get some tobacco and a slight prune flavor.

M: The carbonation held up well with age, but I'd say this is lacking a little body.

D: I didn't have a problem finising the bomber in 2 hours, but it may just be a tad sweet.

Overall, I prefer this second to none over most other scotch ales (besides Wet Willy).

Sep 22, 2010
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ckeegan04 from Texas

4.54/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark mahogany with a huge frothy light-brown head. Thick sheets of lace left on the glass.

S - Very boozy aroma with strong notes of smoked malts and vanilla. Very malty. As it warms bits of wood come through as well.

T - Rich, malty tastes up front. Bourbon quickly comes through with lots of vanilla and an excellent warming. Caramel and a light smoked malt taste provide a good finish.

M/D - Medium to full bodied and very creamy. Carbonation is a bit high given the style. Moderate drinkability, the alcohol provides a nice warmth and it can sneak up on you.

Sep 09, 2010
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brentk56 from North Carolina

3.82/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a mahogany color with a decent cap that leaves plenty of squiggles and dots around the snifter

Smell: Clearly the strong point of this beer, with a nice bourbon/vanilla aroma, a caramel base and a boozy warmth

Taste: Opens with the caramel and that pushes into the bourbon/vanilla range but by mid-palate, a tartness appears that verges on the sour; perhaps this is the aging process taking over in a bad way but it persists through the aftertaste and I probably would have scored this lower if the beer were younger

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation and considerable warmth in the gullet

Drinkability: Too bad about the tart/sour flavors as everything else about the beer was very nice; perhaps it was much better in its youth - my fault for cellaring it for so long

Aug 20, 2010
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TMoney2591 from Illinois

4.28/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served in a Gordon Highland thistle goblet.

Big thanks to connecticutpoet for this bottle!

Something tells me that buffalo would not be able to play those bagpipes too well. But I could be wrong... Anyway, this brew pours a borderline clear deep garnet topped by over a finger of off-white foam. The nose instantly starts in on the bourbon, then moves into notes of toffee, oak, some light greens, and a pinch of brown sugar. The taste melds the wee heavy and bourbon factions nicely, providing some very tasty balance between the bourbon, oak, and hint of vanilla on the one hand, and the toffee, spruce, maple syrup, brown sugar, and greens on the other. The body is a hefty medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a smooth, somewhat chewy feel. Overall, a very nice, extremely well-balanced brew. i wish I had more than one. Get some!

Aug 05, 2010
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portia99 from Massachusetts

4.1/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle of the night in a group tasting, again broken out by jlindros. Poured into a Corsendonk tulip. Really glad to finally try this. I bought a ton of these and traded all away...only to walk into Julio's one day and find them all gone.

A - Pours a mostly clear dark brown with amber/red highlights around the edges. About a finger of tan foam with decent staying power.

S - Bourbon up front with a strong backup of caramel malts, light sugary sweetness, and some nice vanilla.

T - Definitely has bourbon as a major up front flavor component. As with the aroma, there is a bunch of caramel malts, a light sugary sweetness, straight malt, vanilla, and a surprising addition of a light but lingering hint of sour that comes on at the end of each sip and becoming more pronounced as the bottle progresses. Doesn't ever become overpowering or a focal point, but it is definitely noticeable and a mild detractor from an otherwise excellent tasting beer.

M - A bit on the thin side in body with a light/medium carbonation level that is smooth and doubt helped along by the vanilla-y flavors from the barrels. Surprisingly no heat at all from being in the bourbon barrels and the high alcohol level of the beer.

D - Very enjoyable BB aged beer. Nice addition of flavors from the barrel that complements the base beer very well. This is one of the cases where the sum of the parts exceeds the individual components for me. Hope another batch of this is in the BBC's future.

Jul 25, 2010
Berkshire Bourbon Barrel Scotch Ale from Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.
Beer rating: 93 out of 100 with 137 ratings