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Samuel Adams Thirteenth Hour Stout (Barrel Room Collection) | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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Samuel Adams Thirteenth Hour Stout (Barrel Room Collection)Samuel Adams Thirteenth Hour Stout (Barrel Room Collection)

Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Massachusetts, United States

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Aged in oak barrels; hand-bottled corked & caged; bottled-conditioned.

Added by Jason on 08-11-2011

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Reviews: 281 | Ratings: 1,049
Photo of Bung
3.57/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A very dark cola black pour. Finger of dark cream head. The layer retains quite well. Sticks to the glass ever so slightly.

Aroma, very fruity and figgy/raisiny. Quite a bit of estery "Belgian" notes. Some tartness.

Taste, tiny bit of grape up front. Brown sugar and molasses. There is some earthy chocolate and coffee, but really only after it warms quite a bit.

Maybe medium body, carbonation is just a tick on the higher side. A very faint warming. Drinks pretty well, just a bit thin, like most dark style Belgians in my opinion.

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Photo of Jwale73
3.83/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle served in my St. Bernardus chalice at 51 degrees. Pours slightly darker than cola with a dense, cream-colored head embedded with tiny pinpricks. Head eventually settles into a consistent skim and a thick band around the edges. Arcs and spots of lacing are exposed on the tilt side of the glass with each quaff. Nose screams Belgian Strong Dark - dark vinous fruits, bubblegum, yeast and a hint of cocoa. Taste consistent with nose - more cocoa is revealed in the flavor profile as well as spice (perhaps nutmeg and anise) and a light, roasted quality towards the back. Mouthfeel is medlum-light with a slightly prickly carbonation and a trace of acidity. Definitely not a Belgian Style Stout; however, not a bad Belgian Strong Dark. That said, there are better examples of the style out there at this price point.

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Photo of claspada
4.12/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a black dense color with a fizzy light tan head that slowly recedes leaving a ring of bubbles on the surface around the edge of the glass.

Aromas begin with a huge amount of Belgian yeast influenced smells including dark dark fruits, mainly figs and raisins. As it warms there is some wet wood notes and a dark chocolate maltiness. The finish has notes of green raisins, spice and vanilla.

The tastes are full of bright dark fruit which blends with some toffee and prune notes that come though wit a slight tang quality in the finish. Chocolate and yeasty spice emerge as it warms.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium-high carbonation. Finish is fairly dry and dark fruit forward, higher carbonation is a nice change of pace and makes this surprisingly drinkable.

Overall I really was surprised and enjoyed this beer from Sam Adams. The flavors are well blended and this is exactly what a Belgian Stout should taste like. I was saving this for colder weather but just decided to crack it open on a whim and although the darker beers are better enjoyed in colder months in my opinion, the dark fruitiness and lighter body make it fine for any evening as a nightcap.

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Photo of rlee1390
3.67/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Black in the glass but a deep brown when pouring, one finger tan head

S-Roasted malt, vanilla, spices and dark fruits

T-Some chocolate, little bit of roasted malt, darker fruits, plums. As it warms some coffee.

M-Light to medium bodied, well carbonation.

O-Like most Sam Adams it seems to start well but not reach the potential it had. Nose was good but the taste does not live up.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.86/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into a chalice glass

Appearance – The beer pours a dark brown, nearly black color with a one finger head of a thick creamy head of an off white color. The head very slowly fades leaving a fantastic level of thick and foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma of the beer is big of a yeasty and banana smell mixed with lots of darker fruit aromas of raisin, plum and fig. Along with these smells comes other more Belgian spice smells with strong notes of clove and coriander and a bit of pepper. A sugary sweet bubblegum aroma and a bit of candied sugar mix with the fruit to create an overall very sweet smell. This sweet however is overall balanced by the presence of some lighter dark chocolate and roasted malt aromas which with the sweet produces a very inviting smell.

Taste – The taste begins with a somewhat sour dark fruit flavor as there is a rather strong presence of cherry, raisin, fig and a lemon like taste. Right up front there is also some flavors of a roasted malt and light chocolate nature, which begin stronger, but end up fading more and more as the taste advances. While the roasted and chocolate fade, some yeasty and spice flavors come to the tongue along with more and more sour lemon flavors joining along. While quite weak more toward the middle, the roasted flavors make a resurgence at the end of the taste, bringing along with them some hay and grassy hop flavors. These flavors balance some of the more sour flavors nicely and with some flavors of a light candied sugar and some warming boozy rum flavors coming to the tongue at the end, a mildly bittered and somewhat sour dark fruity and lightly boozy Belgian flavor is left to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on somewhat thin for a brew of 9 % abv, but not too far off for a Belgian strong dark, while the carbonation level is on the slightly higher side. The feel is rather nice as it mellows the sour a bit with the thinner body and higher carbonation all while still allowing the other more mild dark fruit and malt flavors, as well as the yeast and spice, to come through.

Overall – While listed as an Imperial Stout, I would definitely not classify it as that, but instead as a Belgian strong dark ale. It is fruitier and less roasty with a whole mess of Belgian yeast flavors. Overall it is alright, but really does not outshine other beers of a comparable style and price.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
3.84/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From the bottle into my tulip glass. The beer was black with a little red around the edges. It had a small tan head.

Very aromatic. Chocolate/coffee/roasted malt. Vanilla. Dark fruit. A little peppery feel in my nose.

Not quite as tasty as I thought it would be. Dark chocolate and espresso at first, oak/vanilla. A hint of raisin.

Medium-bodied, maybe a little on the thin side. Still pretty enjoyable.

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Photo of Suds
4.07/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Another interesting Barrel Room beer from Sam Adams. This one is a dense black color, with a fizzy brownish head. The smell is all Belgian...lots of funk, yeast, and acids. Horse and grass, some malt, and a little booze. The taste is sugary and malty, with a bit of acidic twang. Funky, yeasty, and intense. The alcohol is well hidden. The body is a little helter-skelter, at once both spritzy and substantial. I didn't get many wood notes in the beer, although there is a myriad of complex flavors. I enjoyed this beer more than I expected.

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Photo of ccrida
4.24/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Appearance is dark with a creamy tan head leaving tight foamy lace.

Smell is fruity Belgian esters, robust grape.

Taste is basically strait BSDA, but with some light roast and brett notes. So, yes, definitely barrel aged Belgian stout, but really those are subtle auxiliary notes notes to the sugary malt and fruity esters. The problem is, the brett at least, is an acrid distraction. But I do like the chocolate notes of the stout.

Mouthfeel is a little thick, medium+.

Drinkability is solid overall. Definitely a nice beer, very good, not great. I seem to like it more than most here I guess, but I love a fruity BSDA. Some heat though, it's a sipper, but a very nice one.

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Photo of Pencible
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: This poured an opaque black with thick tan head.
S: It smelled like grassy hops and spicy Belgian yeast, with some dry dark chocolate and roasted coffee.
T: It tasted like dry dark chocolate and roasted coffee, with some pumpernickel and spicy Belgian yeast. It had a clean earthy bittersweet aftertaste.
M: It was watery with lots of fine natural carbonation. Fairly thin body.
D: This was a nice BSDA, but not much stout character and basically no barrel. The scent and taste were still nice, and the body was decent. The finish was smooth with well hidden alcohol, so it was pretty easy to drink. Might age well. Fresh is good not great.

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Photo of mynie
4.12/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Decent pour. Dark ruby, not nearly opaque, with a solid, soapy white head.

Smells not like a stout, which is probably why the folks at BA have classed this as a Belgian Dark. It's too fruity, not nearly enough dry hops. A little bit of ashen chocolate is in there, too, but overall it's tart fruit, with big nodes of raisins and plums. Nicely complex.

Tastes good and complex, but a little thin on the back end. Big fruit starts things off, nicely tart, moving into a middle that's unique and wonderfully pleasant--big vanilla, chocolate, and cinnamon spice. Not like a stout, not at all, but definitely a cool left turn for a Belgian Dark. But then... it drops off. There's some yeast in the back, sour and lightly burny, but nothing else.

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Photo of ThisWangsChung
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Cool-ass 750mL bottle poured into a tulip. Not pouring in the sediment.

A: Pours a very dark burgundy color with vibrant carbonation for where I can see through the body. The head is a two finger heavy cream color with very thick bubbles. Eventually, it settles down to one finger high, and the texture becomes a little creamier.

S: There's a nicely subtle sour note of tart cherries on the aroma that I find appetizing, playing shockingly well with the chocolate, darker malts, and lighter fruit esters. If it were stronger, it would be outright amazing, but it nonetheless smells great.

T: To start, there's a light sour component, which also pops back up right before the finish. The transition between this lactic sourness and the chocolate midtaste is pulled off well, not coming across as an infected stout, instead reminding the palate almost of milk chocolate at times. Every once in a while, a big strike of funk will explode on the aftertaste, bringing notes of wet hay and horse blanket. Rather than overwhelming the palate with 3,411 different notes, this beer picks just a handful of flavor profiles (tart cherries, chocolate, cinnamon, dark fruits, and funk), and cohesively shuffles them around in a three act manner. In layman's terms, it's complex enough to keep the palate guessing. Not a steamroller of flavor, but it doesn't need to be.

M: This is where the oak barrel comes through, providing a lot finishing tannic dryness. The body itself is rather coarse, prickly, and slightly syrupy; due to the heavier texture, drinkability isn't particularly high. On the plus side, it's not particularly flabby or bloated feeling in terms of carbonation.

O: A classic "all 4's" kind of beer. It's great, but with a few tweaks here and there, it would become incredible. I couldn't have a lot of this (I pretty much had about 10 oz and corked the rest up), but it's a nice after dinner conversation piece. Great to see Sam Adams coming out of its comfort zone with a beer like this.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.2/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Although it pops like champagne when you open it (watch for flying corks!) it doesn’t fizz like nobody’s business. It pours a deep, warm, opaque sable with a rather typical tan head that doesn’t stick around too long. Smoky aroma has a strong fruity overtone, mainly apple and pear with a hint of banana, and earthy and miso touches. Flavor has a malty core with subtle nutty, earthy, molasses, fruity, roast coffee and chocolate notes. It tastes like a good Belgian style ale blended with a stout, and the different aspects of these two styles marry well. Smooth, edgy texture has above-average body and leaves a nutty, earthy, smoky finish.

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Photo of tectactoe
3.95/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Pours a deep brown, dark ruby color with a tan head that fades pretty quickly and doesn't really leave any noticeable lacing. Nose hits very heavy with a cornucopia of fruity and earthy esters, the heaviest and most apparent being apples and grapes. Very, very sweet and malty aroma. The taste comes up and follows right along with the nose - fruity and actually slightly tart on the tongue, full of apple skins, grapes, and raisins. Sweet toffee and slight caramel shine through near the tail end of the beer. It finishes with a slight oak/woodgrain flavor and a touch of alcohol warmth. Bitterness is low and I really didn't notice any kind of florals or hops in this one at all. Medium-thick body, slightly sticky, low carbonation.

Pretty impressive outing from Sam Adams. This beer may look intimidating, but it was actually quite sweet on the tongue and the alcohol was hidden aside from the typical warming sensation it provided.

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Photo of Brenden
3.86/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The color is pitch black, no light shining through. A medium brown head grows to two fingers in height and is both stiff and creamy. Retention is excellent, and it takes quite a while even to fade to a pillow of foam. Lacing left behind is equally creamy and left pretty thickly up top before dropping to a lesser patchiness.
The smell of this beer seems to serve as more of a gateway to the flavor than its own element. It's just a little light for this particular one. Seems obvious to just head right into the flavor...
which features a sturdy malt backbone if not the firmest, but it holds the whole thing together well. Lactose is the note that lingers that doesn't make sense at first but works out. I get a lot of cherry, which I haven't seen much mention of, and Belgian yeast notes of bubble gum. Until it warms, the Belgian yeast notes don't hold well together, but it does work as it sits. Light notes of cocoa and roast stand firm all the way. A peppery bite of spiciness never fades. There's a light hint of smoke lingering under the sweetness and the malt.
The body's got more of the Belgian dark ale feel than the stout. It's about medium and carbonation is about medium. It's pretty creamy and there's a firm smoothness. One thing I have against it is that the feel is a little too light and fluffy, a bit too much for either style.
Belgian strong dark? Stout? Whatever it is, it's not the epic beer some might look for, but it is good.

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Photo of gford217
3.15/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Funky 750ml bottle, cork and caged.

Pour is much lighter than I was expecting from a stout (I know the classification on BA is BSDA) - a clear dark brown out of the bottle that settles in short of black in the glass with a light beige head.

Aroma is certainly on the fruity side of things for a stout, with the Belgian yeast yielding lots of fruity esters. However, there is a some light spices and hints of dark roasted malts.

The taste is even sweeter than the aroma with tons of Belgian yeast, raisins and candi sugar. The stout character is extremely tough to pick out as there is little roastiness, coffee or chocolate that I can sense. There is a bit of spices in the finish.

The mouthfeel is light and fizzy even for a BSDA which makes it even less representative if you consider this a stout.

As I'm sure you can guess, this certainly wouldn't grade out as a very good imperial stout (or any kind of stout for that matter). It's much more representative of a BSDA though it's not a great version in my opinion. Meh.

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Photo of Gmann
3.4/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep brown color with ruby edges, a smallish off-white head that settles into a very light ring.

The aroma is fairly faint. I pick up some light raisin and subtle metallic notes. Perhaps some Belgian spice from the yeast. Disappointing for a Belgian style. Don't really pick up any stout notes.

The taste is of a light raisin and cola. Some light oaky notes. Some chalky coffee flavor and dark chocolate. Nothing really pops. It has more of a dubbel type flavor with subtle chocolate and coffee notes to go along with a light plum and clovey belgian yeast.

The feel is light with very fizzy carbonation. The active carbonation may mask some of the flavor. Nice balance between sweet and roasty bitterness. Drinks light and fairly refreshing.

A decent Belgian style brew. Could use more flavor from the chocolate and coffee and less carbonation. I like that it keeps itself in check.

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Photo of KTCamm
3.8/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. 4/17

Pours dark brown, almost black, with thick creamy inch head that sits atop like whipped cream. Woodsy nose with raisins. Slight bourbon nose too. Whisky oak taste, boozy, but thin for a stout. Coffee, maple, plums, all kinds of flavors intertwined. Hearty carbonation. Borders on barleywine. Robust.

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Photo of JamieDuncan
4.47/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very interesting mix of dark fruits, spice, chocolate, and roast. Not sure why it is getting crushed, maybe because it is Sam Adams. Not world class but high quality.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
3.62/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter.

3.5 A: Black or nearly so color. Two and a half fingers of frothy beige head. Retention is initially poor with the last half finger sticking around a good while. A short ring of lacing is left.

4.0 S: Starts out with something like a ginger bread cookie - Christmas spices, brown sugar, caramel, sugar, and a bread/dough mix. Roast is next followed by sugar plums, dates, currants, and dark karo syrup. Booze is very well hidden. It's definitely closer to a BSDA than a stout. It's pretty much an American BSDA. Pretty good whatever it is.

3.5 T: Like the nose, but a little less depth of flavor. Spices, caramel, brown sugar, and bread. Dark sweet fruits - raisin, candied plums, currants, and sticky dates. Again booze is well hidden. Not bad.

3.5 M: Medium body. Good moderate carbonation with a light spritziness. Reasonably creamy. Good here.

3.5 D: Overall good effort. It was a little pricey though, so I doubt I'd buy it again. No faults and solid all around.

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Photo of jeff1973
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from an odd-shaped 750ml bottle into a Bruery tulip. Guessing it was bottled 9/2012, so about 13 mos old. Bought at Hi Times in Costa Mesa CA for $9.30 on 10/5/12.

A - Dark brown, rootbeer color with ruby tinges on the edges. Tan head leaves good lacing.

S - Dried cherry and fig. Hint of baker's cocoa. Dark bread.

T - Big dried cherries and blueberries, also figs. A little hint of cocoa on the back end (chocolate covered dried cherries). A hint of licorice. Has the classic BSDA flavor combos. Had this fresh and remember it being a little hot. After a year it has really mellowed. No noticeable alcohol burn.

M - Classic BSDA. Medium-full mouthfeel with lively carbonation and slick feel on the tongue afterwards. A little creaminess, also. Very enjoyable.

O - Really good beer. I don't know why this doesn't get more love. I remember it being a little hot when I had it fresh and I think I also thought it was just "pretty good" and not "great". I will definitely pick up another to cellar, especially with the nice price tag.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.61/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Samuel Adams Thirteenth Hour has a very thick, spongy, tan head, and a fiercely bubbly, dark brown, almost black, appearance, with good lacing left behind. The aroma is of mild coffee and chocolate, black licorice, dried light fruit, golden raisen, mild oak, and dark-roasted malt. Taste is of those elements, with an odd canned spaghetti sauce or tomato sauce acidity. Bittterness is almost not detected. Some candy sugar and spiced holiday bread or cake is picked up. Mouthfeel is medium, and Samuel Adams Thirteenth Hour finishes spritzy and not so much like a stout at all.


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Photo of KYGunner
3.68/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

As this was poured in a snifter the head took over and built a massive wall of foam that quickly ran away. The color was a tidy dark brown, maybe prune juice color.

There's a lot of scents in the nose but none of those in the label descriptions. There's a fruity prune or date, yeasts, Juicyfruit gum, wine or port and then a Worcestershire sauce like aroma.

The flavors were tart, much better as it warmed, and began to resemble a Quad. I also caught more wine and port like flavors before it ended in the Worcestershire sauce.

The feel is quite mellow and as it warmed there was more viscosity.

The Worcestershire sauce aroma and taste worries me as soy sauce flavor means a yeast issue and perhaps just a bad bottle. That flavor was light and the overall experience was better than average.

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Photo of arizcards
3.56/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a caged and cork 750 ml bottle from TW Arrowhead in late July for $9.99. No visible bottling date.

Beer poured dark brown with a very nice off white head that has some serious hang time.

Nose is sour cherries.

Taste is sour cherries with some chocolate. Some phenols come into play mid stream. Finish is sweet and sour.

Feel is medium bodied and not overly smooth.

Overall definitely some issues with this beer. Not horrid by any stretch but i wonder if age has anything to do with what take are off flavors.

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Photo of DoubleSimcoe
2.92/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Thirteenth Hour Stout, bottle bought for $10.95 at Leary's in Newburyport, Massachusetts. Beautiful design, and very curious I am about this "Barrel Room Collection".

Appearance: Poured into a cheap plastic cup in a hotel room in Provincetown, MA, Thirteenth Hour appears creamy and diligent. My first pour was almost all foam, but then I got a good, long-lasting cafe-con-leche head. Superb lacing and good retention.

Smell: A tad of cherry, some oxidation and brulee sugars. Raisins and a very faint touch of Belgian chocolate.

Taste: Reminds me of Mad Elf, only lesser. Tangy fruit punch, smashed grape left under the sun. Coffee? Maybe a cold Starbucks Frappuccino (trademark) bought at the local gas station. Spicy, slightly hoppy and roasty finish with some oxidation. No oak whatsoever.

Mouthfeel: Thin around the edges, but nicely creamy. Very yeasty, too filling.

Overall: Drinks pretty good, considering the 9%, but it is a blah beer. I've had better Belgian strong ales, and this is definitely NOT a stout. Nowhere near it. I got tired of it half-way through the bottle and regretted the purchase.


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Photo of stephenjmoore
3.88/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Dark brown with some amber highlights. Foamy tan head that does not leave much lacing on the glass.

S- Belgian yeast and spices come through right away, with a hint dried fruit. Only getting faint hints of roasted malt, chocolate and oak.

T- Some fruity sweetness up front, followed by the Belgian spices and finishes with the roasted chocolate malt. Oak compliments throughout and adds a smoothness to the finish.

M- Medium bodied with medium carbonation throughout. Finish is smooth and leaves a pleasant aftertaste.

O- This is a pretty good offering, but nothing really blows me away. Definitely fits more into the Belgian dark ale category than a stout.

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Samuel Adams Thirteenth Hour Stout (Barrel Room Collection) from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.77 out of 5 based on 1,049 ratings.
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