Barrel-aged Mountain
Banded Brewing Co.

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American Imperial Stout
Ranked #1,461
Ranked #9,163
4.09 | pDev: 9.05%
Banded Brewing Co.
Maine, United States
Notes: Barrel-aged Imperial Stout
Dark and foreboding. One sip begs another chance to explore the complexities of The Mountain. Brewed in 2017, then aged in whiskey barrels for 12 months. Rich and creamy with notes of Mexican hot chocolate, elderberry, bourbon + maple syrup. Our anniversary beer!
Reviews: 13 | Ratings: 39 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of jlindros
4.29/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours a medium sized frothy large bubbled mocha head with medium retention, good lacing and legs, pitch black beer

Nose intense rich dark malts, chocolate cocoa, dark chocolate and cookie wafer, fudge brownie, fluffy nougat, a little roast and coffee, and flashes of malt-derived dark fruits, raisin fig notes, a little vanilla ice cream and barrel with a little whiskey in the background, but a bit more fruity rum, both are fairly light, but some baking spices from the barrel also come through

Taste brings more intense everything basically, big blend, a bit sweet, caramel like candy and fluffy nougat, candy cookie wafer with layers of chocolate, milk, choc ganache, and a bit of fudge brownie, cookie dough and baking spices in there, and plenty of vanilla, vanilla chocolate ice cream blend with some coffee ice cream as well, and a little roasty note, light whiskey and light rum again way in the background, but barrels attribute all the vanilla and baking spices, more mild malt-derived fruits with fair raisiny flavor (maybe more rum raisin like), lush creamy intense, with medium bitterness, and a slight burnt coffee caramel late, burnt lactose as well, with a finish that attempts to dry but still sticky sweet, a bit of warming alcohol, more bitterness and spicy hops kicking in, and lingering fudge

Mouth is full bod, rich creamy chewy, medium to a bit lighter carb, and a little alcohol warmth

Overall pretty good beer, the base seems well done and lots of intense flavors balancing and blending nicely, but very little rum and whiskey which I really wanted to get more of, but that doesn't mean the barrels weren't there.

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jlindros from Massachusetts, May 13, 2019
Photo of smcolw
3.93/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Near black color where no light passes through the edge. The head is beige but small. Some streaks for lace.

Smell: Cherry and chocolate smells initially. I get some cream and candied malt.

Oily alcohol along with the warmth comes after the darker black patent malt bitterness starts the taste. The body and carbonation are relatively benign (read: neutral). The swallow is warming from the alcohol and leaves a short lived dark chocolate aftertaste.

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smcolw from Massachusetts, Jan 06, 2019
Photo of Hoppy_Time
4.47/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a rich black brown with a fluffy light cinnamon two finger head. Head has moderate retention and leaves some lacing, nice alcohol legs.

Aromas of chocolate, oak, roasty malt, vanilla, toasted coconut, peaty scotch, molasses, dates, prunes, almond/pecan like nuttiness.

Tastes bold with semi-sweet chocolate, oak, maybe some leather, roasty malt smokiness, dark fruits, tannins, a little tobacco, less than the nose but some of that nuttiness, nice char bitterness. Rum is easy for me to discern, and I love rum, and the whisky plays along.

Medium to full bodied, a little light on the final gravity, warming alcohol, dry finish.

This is my kind of barrel aged stout, avoiding becoming cloyingly sweet and overly viscous. Great flavor and nice balanced barrel character, and the rum shining over whiskey is great for me.

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Photo of Davepoolesque
4.21/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dark Chocolate, vanilla, coconut and oak. Nice boozy kick, but it's balanced out with the oaky dryness and lower sweetness. Smooth sipper. Lighter to medium bodied. Really solid.

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Davepoolesque from Massachusetts, Mar 13, 2017
Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.68/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured a viscous pitch black colour with half a finger of mocha coloured head.

Nose is rich barrel notes of rum, whiskey and charred oak with chocolate fudge, licorice and roast from the base beer.

Palate falls a little flat unfortunately, not living up to the wonderful nose. Massive burnt toast dominates and is somewhat distracting. Licorice is present up front as well, which gives way to barre flavours mid-palate, which add notes of rum, oak and bourbon. Heavy roast lingers in th finish.

Thin for the style and the ABV. Medium body with low carbonation.

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TheSevenDuffs from Ontario (Canada), Aug 07, 2016
Photo of WesMantooth
3.3/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

2014 dated 12 oz bottle poured into a snifter

Excellent looking beer. A fairly viscous black out of the bottle. Produced a 3 finger, foamy, dark brown head that retains a nickel thick ring with some spotty film.

Lots and lots of tobacco in the aroma along with barley, whisky, and chocolate.

There is no hidding the bourbon here. Vanilla, oak, and a crap load of alcohol. A bunch of heat for a 2 year old 12% beer. The tobacco also tastes as strong as it smelled. Those two things pretty much dominate the flavor, but there is some significant charred ashyness that leaves a bitter aftertaste. Slight lingering aspirin/metal taste.

Body is a little thin for a RIS, but it is barrel aged. Some tingly burn from the alcohol.

Not really a bad or offensive beer in any way, but far from great either. Kind of one dimenisonal with the tobacco and some rough edges on the other flavors. Just way too much heat to enjoy much else. I cant imagine it fresh.

After finishing my review and reading some others, there are a lot of people that are apparently reviewing the rum barrel version in the wrong place

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Photo of jdhilt
4.01/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours a one-finger brown head that fades slowly leaving traces of lace. Black color, no highlights. Good carbonation and medium-heavy bodied. Rum nose and flavor is rum, vanilla and roasted chocolate. High ABV is totally hidden. Pricey at $7.99 for a 12oz bottle from Julio's Liquors Westborough, MA.

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jdhilt from New Hampshire, Apr 14, 2016
Photo of rudzud
4.43/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed at the Armsby Abbey Stout fest breakfast. 2014 vintage.

A - Poured into a standard tulip a nice dark black hue with a nice mocha head that fades to leave thin lacing and a good blanket. Nice legs too.

S - Aromas of light char, vanilla, softer chocolate, light light rum. Really nice barrel qualities with softer dark fruits.

T - Taste is similar to the nose, good char and vanilla with delicious light rum notes. Chocolate is nice too, everything is subtle and works.

M - Mouthfeel is nicely carbonated, creamy, alcohol hidden well.

O - Overall this was a rather nicely done stout. Great barrel characteristics. Nice.

Serving Type: on tap

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rudzud from Massachusetts, Apr 09, 2016
Photo of rjp217
4.32/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2014 bottle.... Amazing fluffy pour, huge amounts of lace. Big time run aroma but more subtle in the flavor. A bit chalky, cocoa powder and dark chocolate. Drinks pretty easy for the ABV.

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rjp217 from Massachusetts, Feb 23, 2016
Photo of sweemzander
3.83/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle poured into a snifter. 2013
(A)- Pours pitch black with some good tan froth. Minimal lacing
(S)- Big on raisin and dark fruits. Subtle toasty oak and vanilla
(T)- Again, big on licorice and raisin. Huge amounts of boozy raisin actually
(M)- Good carbonation level. Huge raisin and licorice. A little one-dimensional but shows good flavor
(O)- If you like licorice and raisin, then you will love this beer. Just a little too heavy on the licorice for my tastes

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sweemzander from Illinois, Sep 10, 2015
Photo of SomethingClever
3.13/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

12 oz bottle poured into nonic pint

A: very dark beer head was about half an inch mocha head

S: lots of charred oak some whiskey figs a little burnt toffee

T: a lot of the nose follows the taste lots of whiskey burnt oak tastes maybe a little of the licorice and not hardly any roast

M: Clings nicely in the aftertaste but the mouthfeel is thinish to almost watery

O: Nothing makes anything great about this beer it's aged but still pretty harsh. It's kind of one trick with the tastes. This beer is big booze but just average in a lot of the ways you don't want this beer to be.

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Photo of Jonny41
4.17/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Good spiced rum/bourbon smell, less head than I expected and had a slight metallic finish, which was the only reason I didn't rate higher, other wise a great tasting beer with a great spiced smell.

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Jonny41 from Maine, Jan 18, 2015
Photo of WanderingFool
4.49/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Small tan head on this black beer. Strong bourbon aroma. Notes of oak and vanilla. Creamy body. The bourbon comes through in the taste. Oak, vanilla, chocolate, roast malt and dark fruits. An alcohol burn when it goes down. Reminds me of KBS.

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WanderingFool from Massachusetts, Dec 25, 2014
Barrel-aged Mountain from Banded Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 39 ratings