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Imperial Stout Trooper - Bourbon Barrel Aged | New England Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
86
very good
104 Reviews
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Imperial Stout Trooper - Bourbon Barrel AgedImperial Stout Trooper - Bourbon Barrel Aged
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
New England Brewing Co.
Connecticut, United States
newenglandbrewing.com

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
2012 - 375ml bottle, label changed to hunched groucho barrel. 10% ABV

Added by caresville on 04-25-2010

BEER STATS
Reviews:
104
Ratings:
303
Avg:
3.82
pDev:
23.82%
 
 
Wants:
260
Gots:
87
For Trade:
11
User Reviews
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Reviews: 104 | Ratings: 303
Photo of zoolzoo
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Finally decided to break this open...

A: Pours black, huge khaki head in my Duvel tulip. Bubbles everywhere, appears to be well carbonated.

S: Much like regular Trooper, the aroma is great but somewhat subdued. Chocolate malt, bit of coffee. Definitely getting that barrel up front, doesn't smell hot though.

T: As a base beer IST is an incredibly balanced stout. I'm glad that NEB decided to NOT blow it out of the water with barrel! Roasted malts and earthiness, coffee, a little chocolate, and a touch of lingering bitterness. The beer retains the balance of IST, with the addition of woodiness that is quite complementary.

M: Probably over carbed for the style, although in my opinion this aspect kept drinkability quite high. BA IST doesn't really have the HUGE flavors that merit a completely thick and coating mouthfeel. Not bad.

D: Quite high, especially for a BA Imperial Stout. Well balanced, not blown out by barrel flavors, and little alcohol heat except for a pleasant warming.

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Photo of Brez07
4.13/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Picked up a few bottles from the past weekend's release. Poured into an imperial pint glass

A: Dark black pour with a thin mocha head. It leaves scant lacing throughout the glass

S: Potent, but not overwhelming, bourbon smell. There is a tinge of alcohol in the nose. There are hints of vanilla and oak present as well

T: Starts off with a great roasted flavor. A nice bourbon/vanilla/chocolate/oak mix follows. Finishes with a minimal alcohol presence

M: Medium bodied. Very smooth, as smooth as can be. There is a nice tingle from the carbonation and a touch of roasted malt on the tongue in the finish

D: Easy at first, but the bourbon character causes me to slow down a bit eventually. Not a bad thing though. Personally, I think this will age with the best of them. Lucky to have picked up a few of these while it was still available

4.5/4/4.5/5/4.5 - A

Update: Had another bottle on 10/23/10. Carbonation was high, causing it to be thin. Adjusting mouthfeel to a 3 and drinkability to a 4

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Photo of gueuzedreg
4.18/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A- Dark black with coffee lacing. Thin lacing, no legs.

S- Vanilla and malt. That takes most of the S. Bit of barrel.

T- Vanilla, malt and more barrel than in the nose.

M- Nice and creamy, somewhat viscous; just the right amount of carb

O- A well done BA stout, but there is a bit of a void; though I would drink this 24/7 without complaining anymore

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Photo of VelvetExtract
4.19/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle #631/1400 released in 2013.

A-Black as they come. Light stands no chance. A forceful pour births an impressive inch-high loaf of half-baked biscuit dough. Thick, semi-solid head is light brown in color. Head leaves thick, chubby knots of lacing. Looks awesome.

S-Not as intimidating as I had hoped. Milky sweetness and light bourbon notes. The barrel was not overly generous here. Milk chocolate and flat root beer. Not intensely roasted either. Definitely a different aroma than I was expecting. Not very intense in any area. Has the necessary components but where's the balls?

T-The bourbon is far more enthusiastic here. Coffee and roast is also much more talkative. Blatantly superior to the nose. A bit peppery. Bourbon infused fudge. Vanilla extract. Still, it lacks the power and machismo of all of the upper-echelon Barrel Aged Stouts.

M-When I look at it from a different perspective, this is one of the most easy-imbibing barrel aged brews I have had. Body is still full. Not viscous but incredibly creamy. Lack of huge bourbon flavors leads to easier drinkability.

O/D-At first I was semi-disappointed but once I really started my autopsy of this beer, I began to enjoy it a lot. It is definitely a different take of a style of beer that defines "the bigger the better". I like this beer more and more after every sip. Doesn't stand up to the barrel-agenda legends but it is a very delicious brew nonetheless.

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Photo of Spica66
4.19/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Received this an EXTRA(!) from randomdanger. "Thank you" does not say enough, Will!

Consumed under a clear, blue sky on my deck, with gwuilliums on his 43rd birthday.

A: Extremely dark pour. Instant head formation. No stopping the head formation. Waaay over-carbonated. Like year-old Founders Breakfast Stout.

S: Sweet and dark. Roast malt, coffee, very nice.

T: Also sweet and dark. Sweet like Bell's Expedition Stout with dark notes like The Abyss 2008. Very well balanced.

M: The carbonation, even after aggressive swirling was way too high and caused quite a sharpness on the tongue.

D: If you were to let this sit our for a couple of hours to burn off the carbonation, it is very easy to drink.

Note to self:
This is the night we drank the 1986 Robert Keenan cab.

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Photo of davey101
4.22/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

2012 release, 375 ml bottle into a 668 tulip. Bottle #238/1400. Its worth noting the new style label omits the word "Trooper" and is labeled as "Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Stout". This has been my longest want so I was ecstatic to get this beer. Thanks for the awesome beers Matt, Rob and company!

A - Pours a pitch black body. A two finger head of dark mocha head forms and fades away quickly leaving behind thin edging. A swirl produces some modest lacing with minimal retention but a fingers worth of head does come back to life. Great alcohol legs form and stay for a while.

S - Odd and unique, just as the standard IST is. Starts off with roasted malts and cola. Notes of oak, vanilla, butterscotch, fudge, leather and black pepper. Nice balance between savory and sweet.

T - Very roasty initially. Then comes some coconut and chocolate fudge. Finally the bourbon rounds it out. Vanilla, oak, and butterscotch. I swear there is a subtle touch of Dr. Pepper in here. Its not dark fruit or red wine....its just...something borderline fruity in the background. Noticeable alcohol burn on the finish but its very pleasant if you're a fan of drinking bourbon. Not the most balanced or well integrated flavor profile, but I can't say I've tasted a beer like this. Delicious in all the wrong ways.

M - Medium to light bodied and slightly syrupy. Carbonation is way too high and seems to just jumble around the all the flavors. Rather easy drinking despite the alcohol warmth.

O - A very different BA stout with some faults. The carbonation is way too high and does not work with the flavor profile at all. There is an underlying cola quality to the aroma and flavor. But through it all I love it! Well worth the wait and personal hype.

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Photo of mltobin
4.23/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

375 mL from this past winters release. I poured it into a NEBCO flute.

The appearance is black with a small tan head. Its` nose contains bourbon, roasted malts, dark chocolate and caramel. I tip it back for a sip and I taste chocolate, toffee, more of that bourbon, oak and a bit of vanilla. It tastes very nice and warms you up. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a pretty decent a mount of carbonation to it. All things considered, another very good beer from the crew at NEBCO.

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Photo of Hamburgers
4.25/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Vintage 2012. Bottle #1140. Pours black with thin brown head. Aroma is dried fruit, vanilla, easy on bourbon. Smells like a BBA barley Wine. Flavor is sweet, fruity and again easy on the bourbon. Medium body with good carbonation. Very good. Ready to drink now which is fine cause I am drinking it now....

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Photo of Roguer
4.26/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Perfect black brew, with a modest tan head with good retention.

Unbelievably smooth aroma. Bourbon dominates, but in an extremely approachable way. Chocolate and vanilla follow.

Flavor exactly matches: the barrel takes center stage, but not in a way that it washes away the stout base. Brew loses some of the kick-in-the-teeth roasted bitterness that base IST has, but it compensates with a perfect smoothness.

Super thick feel, among the thickest BA stouts - just a hair shy of BCBS territory. Little alcohol presence.

Extremely smooth brew. Any fan of BBA stouts should be well pleased. You do lose out a bit on IST's bite (think Narwhal vs BBA Narwhal, a very clear parallel IMO), but it's a beautiful and smooth beer.

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Photo of cbutova
4.27/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Opened this baby to celebrate my college graduation, reviewed from notes.

A- Pours pitch black into my snifter with a one finger head that has great retention. A thick coat of fine lace is left at the top of the glass but thins out to no lacing toward the bottom. The suds are sticky and hang up on the glass well. A nice tan coffee colored cloud floats atop the beer for the entire time.

S- Good strength, holds up well throughout drinking. One of the best balanced barrel-aged beer aromas. The oak and bourbon are slight and do not sting the nostrils. Blended in with this is very nice roast coffee, malt and cocoa. Licorice notes makes an appearance as well.

T- A good balance of slight bourbon, oak, roast coffee beans, cocoa and roast malt. The coffee is awesome but the overall flavor feels thin/weak to me. Earthy hops round out the flavor with some licorice as well. I don't have a problem with stouts that don't kick your face in but the laid back flavor feels kind of strange to me with the bourbon aging. It is certainly a lighter barrel aged stout.

MF- Incredibly creamy but the body itself is a bit thin. A tiny bit of warmth from the alcohol and nice low carbonation on the tongue. Needs some thickness but the creaminess saves this one from falling far short.

DB- The thin flavors and mouthfeel are the only drawbacks. It is extremely smooth for a barrel-aged imperial stout and very balanced. The high price was a bit much but these days it is expected. I could really kill a few of these at once but will hold back on the rest of my bottles.

INFECTION: (11/08/10) Popped a bottle that was clearly infected. The infection made the beer incredibly fizzy and almost impossible to pour (3oz spilled out of the glass foaming). The flavor was not hugely affected but the Bourbon was faint and there was a bit of a Belgian/Saison/Brett/straw thing going on. It was not sour in anyway, just way too carbonated and a bit Belgian.

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Photo of rpstevens
4.27/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a Darkness snifter. The beer pours pitch black, with a two finger light mocha head. The head fades quickly to a small ring around the top of the beer, leaving ample oily lacing on the sides of the glass.

The smell is very nice. Roasted coffee, dark chocolate, dark fruit (much more dark fruit than the regular IST from what I recall). The dark rich qualities give way to sweet caramel, vanilla, bourbon and oak. The sweet qualities of the booze and bourbon really balance well in contrast to the roasted qualities of the beer.

The taste is not as good as the smell would have suggested, but still nice. The dark chocolate and roasted coffee are present, but not as strong. The sweet bourbon, vanilla and caramel really dominate the flavor, while the oak comes in at the end and helps to balance everything out and dry out the finish.

The beer is more carbonated than I expected, but it's definitely not overdone. It's complex, and heavy, without being overbearing. It has a nice smooth mouthfeel, and aside from being a bit too sweet the flavors are fairly well balanced. The alcohol sweetness is present, but it adds to the flavors nicely. This is a beer that really benefitted from the barrel, and I can't wait to try it again in a few months.

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Photo of braugon
4.32/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2012 - Pitch black, oily. Smells exactly as advertised. No real head on this pour.

Taste's fizzier than most ris's but really pleasant and lively. Sticky, sweet. Molasses and vanilla, oak and bourbon.

Hop bitterness before prunes and tannic on the finish.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.33/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thrilled is not the word to describe how I feel being able to finally try this one. For some reason one of the hardest things I have ever tried to acquire. Served chilled and poured into a snifter I was able to finally enjoy this one on 05/20/2010.

The pour was utterly fantastic and easily the best part. As I pry off the thick golden wax concealing the cap, I decant into my chalice. Dark black, rich looking, not as thick as oil, but super rich looking and a full three fingers of chocolate colored head then come up from the bottom of the glass. Enormous looking beer I have to say as the head just drip down the sides of the glass, pushing the envelope as to what I was expecting for sure. Leaving it sit for a few moments really lets it come to life as it falls down to just a soft tan pillow that coats everything it touches.

Aroma is rich, still hot from the barrel there is a noticeable boozy component to it for sure. Rich dark malts, oak, bourbon, vanilla, a hint of something bitter, almost hoppy at times comes through as it warms, interesting notes for sure. Really complex and fills the room as the cocoa and the coffee are now starting to come into their own. Again wonderfully well done and simply impressed beyond words so far with this one. The first sip coats the palate with a rich rush of oak and booziness, takes me back for a moment. Coffee, astringent flavors now come forward. Working my way in I find the vanilla and the smoked, almost peat like flavors I was looking for as well. Again very, very well done. Hints of delicate light hops, bitter chocolate, oak, green, vinous properties floating in and out. A touch of bite, some kind of spiced note, what the hell did they put into this? Sooth finish, rich, creamy, sweet, with a backlash of an almost vanilla bean flavor mixed in and dominant coffee notes. You feel the burn on this one, but I loved sitting back with it over the course of an hour or two.

Overall I thought it was a stunning success. A really well done, and very nicely put together ale of unquestionable goodness. Worth the energy in tracking down for sure. I would have no issue at all with going after this one again, why should I.

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Photo of woosterbill
4.33/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle into a Duvel tulip.

A: Robust black body with ruby highlights presided over by over two fingers of thick, creamy brown foam. Great retention and solid sheets of lacing. Gorgeous stout, plain and simple.

S: Starts out with bourbon, vanilla, and oak notes from the barrel. Licorice, coconut, and chocolate follow close behind. Very woody, sweet, and boozy. Awesome.

T: Like the nose, starts out with bourbon, oak and vanilla. Behind the barrel flavors are intensely roasty notes of chocolate, coffee, and anise. Some dark fruits come through as well, with prunes and figs being especially apparent. Light smoke and heat on the bitter finish. Rich and complex.

M: Smooth, full-bodied, and well carbonated. Great.

D: Delicious, but still fairly young and hot.

Notes: This is just a great barrel-aged stout, and I can't wait to see how it develops over the next couple years. Great job, NEB, and here's to further barrel-aged experiments from this great outfit.

Cheers!

Update: I opened another one of my bottles to share after NotF. It was definitely on the high end of the carbonation spectrum for the style, but a rather careful pour yielded a perfect inch of head over my 4 ounces of barrel-aged deliciousness. While its balance kept it from standing out in any particular way, it was every bit a match for the other big-name stouts that were sampled that night (Darkness '10, Ivan, Abyss '06, etc). Great beer.

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Photo of WillieThreebiers
4.34/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a medium thick viscous black with a slight and quickly disappearing head. Aroma of bourbon and caramel-chocolate, not overpowering in any way. Creamy chocolate flavor, and very very smooth. Thoroughly enjoyed this one.

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Photo of MenardMa
4.35/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I haven't tried any of the past batches of this, but judging by the mixed reviews they must not have come out quite as good as this most recent one (sold 12/21/13), because this was an excellent beer! Rivals just about any other Bourbon Barrel Stout in my opinion.

It was very rich, and the bourbon comes through nicely without making it too boozy.

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Photo of jimmy82063
4.38/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

During a visit to the brewery in January I witnessed the barrel that this gem was being aged in glad I've had a chance to try this.

Nice creamy head to this pour the vanilla flavor really comes through along with the roasted malts, mild chocolate, but hey what's this?....there is a nice bit of hoppiness for balance.

The bourbon taste is very slight, kind of curious as to what the ABV is.

Think I'll save the second bottle for Christmas!

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Photo of Chico1985
4.38/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(This review is from a fresh bottle that was not infected...I had another about 6 months later and infection had caused the carbonation to be out of control, the taste itself wasn't too different but the mouthfeel definitely had fallen apart. I didn't change any scores in this review to reflect it.)

500ml bottle with awesome gold gel top, poured into my Portsmouth tulip.

Pours black with huge espresso-tan head. Even after a few minutes, this thing isn't going anywhere. Eventually stays at pinky size, has excellent retention and lacing, especially for a barrel-aged beer.

Nose is dominated by light and dark chocolate and roasted malt, very reminiscent of the original Stout Trooper. The bourbon is there, but it's in the background. More booze is in the nose as it warms up however.

Bourbon is more present in the taste, but doesn't take over. If you really want 'bourbon!' screaming in your face you will be disappointed. Milk chocolate, coffee, roasted malt, a bit of hops, slight bourbon and vanilla. As with the original IST the highlight for me is the chocolate taste, especially nice in the aftertaste. I see the ABV isn't listed but if I had to guess, I'd pin in it at 10 or 10.5%. It is a little hot on the tongue but not in the league of fresh KBS or BCS.

Mouthfeel is a bit spiky on the carbonation, some more thickness would've been nice as well. But overall good. Awesome head adds fluffiness to each sip. Heat is mostly kept on the low side.

Drinkability is good, very easy drinking for a bourbon barrel-aged stout. 500ml is a good size for this, a bomber may have been too much. Worth $15 a bottle? I'm not sure about that.

I will say I'm almost always a fan of regular imperial stouts over bourbon barrel ones. I am also a huge fan of the regular Stout Trooper, which I prefer over this. I'm sure most bourbon stout veterans will see this as a "Lite" version compared to more recognized beers of the style.

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Photo of alpinebryant
4.38/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a nice dark mocha head with slightly lacing in the snifter. Pitch black and viscous pour.

S: Aroma of dark roast coffee, burnt patent malt, sweet bakers chocolate.

T: Flavors of a dark robust imperial stout with some barrel and strong bourbon flavors. The bourbon flavors I picked up are more of the harsh high abv flame throwing variety than a sweet bourbon, which I think has made some people say this tastes like Dr Pepper. Vanilla wood and oak mid taste and slightly dry. I clearly tasted this bourbon after letting the glass come to room temp. The roasted ashy flavors are there as well lending a nice complexity that is there in the standard IST, but this is a completely different beast. Any sweetness is mostly gone with added roasted malt and barrel aged flavors.

M: Mouthfeel is fantastic. Caronation is there, and the body is perfectly smooth and rounded.

O: Overall, very impressed here. Clearly a notch up from the non Bourbon barrel aged stout trooper, which is already a very good beer. I am looking forward to hanging on to some of these for years to come. Well done!

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Photo of PicoPapa
4.39/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

375mL bottle, unnumbered. Pours a pitch black color with an inch of frothy dark brown head. Some lacing. Great boozey aroma. Hints of chocolate and vanilla along with some roasted malts but they take a backseat to the bourbon. The taste is a nice balance of bourbon and chocolate with some of the roasted malts. Dark cherries and hints of vanilla. Some smoke towards the end. A bit earthy. Booze at the finish. Nice warming alcohol presence, although I am not sure what the ABV is. Slick mouthfeel with a lot of carbonation. It was by random luck I got a bottle of this and I'm glad i did. The guys at NebCo did a great job with this one. Well balanced with a good amount of bourbon flavor. Overall, I hope I get to grab more next time to try it with some age on it. Fantastic beer.

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Photo of cavedave
4.4/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Huge thanks to steve8robin for this gigantic beer. A great beer for review #200

A billowing head of lather-like, brownish-beige foam climbs past the rim of my tulip, yet stays atop. It slowly descends, leaving puffs of foam on the glass. An opaque, nearly black, thick brew fills the bottom. Probably poured this a bit warm, but the look is incredibly tempting.

The barrel comes into my nose immediately, followed by deep charry notes, dark coffee, bitter chocolate, dark caramel, and some really fragrant herbal bitter. I catch hints of yeast and also some alcohol spice. Very well blended aroma, very pungent and intoxicating.

Finally tasting this as the foam subsides. Woaaahh, a silky liquid touches the tongue and immediately sparks fly to the flavor centers of my brain. It's a very well blended, full flavored taste, and in there are burnt caramel, dark roast malt (very fine malt flavor here), coffee, bitter chocolate, and an herbal bitter that is a slow motion drying factor for an incredibly long finish. The barrel notes are light, hints of oak, vanilla, and even some whiskey flavor are there, but are well balanced and extremely tasty. At this point of age alcohol is nearly missing from the profile. As it nears room temp. some fig and fruit come into the sip. Each sip of this has given me greater enjoyment.

Mouthfeel is a bit light for this style, despite the thick look, and long finish. It is quite viscous, but less so than five others I can think of easily. Carbonation is just shy of med., but well within style, and the blended flavors are presented cleanly, the finish just dry enough.

Due to the silky, easy sipping character of this delicious beer, and low alcohol presence, I give it a perfect rating in drinkability, can't imagine a beer this size being easier to drink.

Impression: Though it's difficult to acquire, big stout lovers should do what it takes to enjoy this one.

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Photo of muttyd
4.43/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Pitch black pour with a huge thick tan head that persists throughout. Amazing lacing and super viscus.

S - Roasted malt, smooth sweet vanilla, oak, and leather. Some bitter hop aromas going on to balance the huge malty aroma.

T - Huge malty sweetness dominates the palate. Oak and vanilla characters blend perfectly, but don't take over the classic imperial stout flavor. Alcohol extremely well hidden for what is probably a 9% abv or so beer.

M - Chewy, creamy, and very sticky.

D - Extremely well balanced barrel aged stout. This is how its done people!

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Photo of sulldaddy
4.45/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Reviewing a cellar temp bottle poured into a snifter. This bottle is from the first release at NEBCO. I decided to treat myself tonight.
The beer pours a jet black color with 4 to 5 cm of creamy tan head even with a gentle pour.
The head fades slowly to a very sturdy surface layer and is tightly packed lattice on every sip.
Aroma is dark chocolate malt with heavy bourbon notes. I also get a little bit of dry wooden toothpick hits too.
First sip reveals a silky smooth textured beer with very fine tingly carbonation.
Flavor is sweet malt with brown sugar, vanilla, bourbon and rich dark chocolate mixed in for good measure.
No hints of the booze on this one, and it is very easy to drink and could be dangerous. I would recommend buying multiple bottles of this treat next time they come around. Very nice stout profile with lots of good bourbon too.
I enjoy it and wish I had another bottle.

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Photo of steve8robin
4.49/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Got this at the 2010 release. Glad to crack one...

A: Amazingly black with a 1 inch milk chocolate head that slowly fades. Leaves beautiful lacing on the glass. Very good.

S: Super roasty creamy bourbon and chocolate covered coffee bean upfront. Beautiful raisin in the middle blended with dark fruit and some sweet malts on the backend. Awesome!

T: Hoppy espresso upfront blended with creamy bourbon. Dark bitter chocolate in the middle with raisin and dark fruit on the backend. Very good. Super roasty brew.

M: Medium body with a nice blend of carbonation. Leaves a very nice stickiness on the palate. Very good.

D: Once you get past the boozy hops, it goes down good.

All in all, this is a very good brew. I'd love to try back to back with a standard IST. I definitely recommend trying this one if you get the opportunity. Great thick BIG stout.

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Photo of Pahn
4.57/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

375ml bottle into a Captain Lawrence tulip. Bottle 671 of 1400, 2013 release (however you want to denote it).

Appearance: Careful pour yields an out of control fizzy tan head. Slow rocky dissipation. Not much lacing. Black.

Smell: Dominating aroma of rich coffee-infused toffee, highlights of prune/cherry. Lacks the complexity of a 5.0 bourbon barrel aged RIS, but god damn it smells good. The toffee/nougat/coffee aroma is rich and soft... It's hard to describe but very distinctive and very inviting.

Taste: Roasted malt up front, quickly taken over by the trademark prune/cherry Imperial Stout Trooper dark fruit flavor (what people are tasting as Dr. Pepper? Do they use Special B in IST?), some vanilla oak underneath it all but subdued. Finishes with a touch of that beautiful toffee note from the aroma.

Further in, the rich caramel and toffee bourbon/oak begins to dominate, with the prickly roasted malt and almost pomegranate-like prune/cherry flavor both playing support roles. Slight ashy undercurrent reminiscent of the base beer, but way in the background. Some red winey dark chocolate, but the grocery-list flavors make up a tiny percentage of the flavor compared to the main toffee flavor. Husky, bitter roasted malt aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Full side of medium bodied. Overcarbonated for my taste, but I *love* the viscous yet slightly creamy feel and the great dry finish. Dial down the carbonation a couple notches and this is the perfect BA RIS mouthfeel for me.

Overall: Real winner from NEBCO. It's like these guys can do no wrong when they go small batch nowadays.

This beer is easily worth the $10 I paid for it. Excellent.

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Imperial Stout Trooper - Bourbon Barrel Aged from New England Brewing Co.
3.82 out of 5 based on 303 ratings.
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