Jefferson's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Stout | Bluegrass Brewing Co. - East St. Matthew's

very good
438 Ratings
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Jefferson's Reserve Bourbon Barrel StoutJefferson's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Stout

Brewed by:
Bluegrass Brewing Co. - East St. Matthew's
Kentucky, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by mcallister on 04-07-2006

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 438 |  Reviews: 326
Photo of weeare138
3.53/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to dickinsonbeer for opening this(I also received one in a trade from kmpitz2)...
Appears a black color with dark brown edges when held to the light. A one inch tan head slowly fades out. Scattered streaks & spots of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of roasted malt, cream, light oak...where's the bourbon? If it's there, I'm struggling to get any. If you blink, you'll miss it.
Taste is of American oak, watered down molasses, cream, cocoa, roasted malt...major dissapointment, as I've been craving bourbon aged brews lately. I would've thought that our friends in Louisville, KY would've gotten this right with the abundance of bourbon aged oak barrels in the area.
Mouthfeel is medium-full bodied with roastiness that clings and a tiny amount of oak tannins in the brew.
Give it another try, boys. I know Kentucky can do this!

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.35/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a thin and light colored black with a small tan head. Nose is light bourbon, roasted malts. Taste was dry and bitter, lacking much complexity. Not as much bourbon as expected and not as much cocoa and full bodiness. Not that great but good, worth a shot.

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Photo of tigg924
4.17/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: black, 1/4 inch head

Smell:burnt malt, oak, caramel, and bourbon

Taste: oak, whiskey, burnt malt, chocolate, and caramel

Mouthfeel: nice bitter and sweet combo--in a malty sense, medium heavy body, creamy

Drinkability: I like this and the sweet aftertaste that lingers is amazing. I noticed the alcohol, but the taste was pleasant and not overpowering. I would have several if not for the high abv. I really like this brew

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Photo of harpus
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of akorsak
3.28/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A 12 oz bottle from a trade with czoch75.

A: The stout is a deep black-brown color with muddy milk chocolate brown at the edges. The head comes close to 1 finger on pour but quickly dissapates to a small band.

S: The aroma coming from the stout is a grainy fruitiness, full of depth, but without the the buttery sweet aroma of bourbon.

T: The flavor is a deep, concentrated graininess, as noted in the nose. The graininess has a roasted element but is thin. The flavor does not last long, nor does it provide the kick that I expected from a double stout. To top it all of, there is no hint of bourbon to be found.

M: The mouthfeel is thin and leaves only the faintest roasted aftertaste.

D: The ale is drinkable but falls disappointingly short on most fronts. The lack of a strong roasted malt character and some bourbon sweetness detracts from the overall enjoyment.

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Photo of bluejacket74
3.98/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle, bottled in October 2007. Served in a Sam Adams BL glass, the beer pours dark brown with an inch tan head. The head goes away quickly, and the lacing is OK. It smells like bourbon, coffee, chocolate, wood and vanilla. The aroma is nice, but not strong at all however it does improve as it warms up some. It tastes like wood, smoke, coffee and a little bit of bourbon and vanilla. There's also a lingering bitter coffee and wood aftertaste. Mouthfeel is medium, it's a bit thinner than I like my stouts to be. However, it is very smooth and silky. Because it is a bit lighter, the drinkability is very good. This is really easy to drink and the alcohol isn't noticable at all. It's not a great beer, but it's still a good one. I'd drink this again, it's a decent choice and it's sessionable enough for an 8.5% ABV beer.

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Photo of pathman
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%

Photo of ADTaber
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of ppoitras
3.92/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle from oracle as part of NoBS BIF. Thanks for the opportunity.

Poured into a large glass chalice, formed a scant 1/8" tan head over the opaque dark brown/black brew. Head is quickly down to small-bubbled swirls, with minimal lacing. Aroma is creamy mocha, with tinges of alcohol. Taste is moderate chocolate and coffee upfront, a light fruitiness in the middle, and some warmth upon the swallow. Mouthfeel is thin, esp for the style, and drinkability is okay. Expected more, esp for an advertised 11%abv. Not really believing that one. A nice brew on it's merits, but not when you go in expecting gangbusters.

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Photo of jmdrpi
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of scruffwhor
3.33/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Pours a deep murky black with a thick brown highlight at the top of my snifter. You can see some of the bubbles befrore they reach the surface. The aromas is a bland hint of woody malts with some roast. Not bad, but not very complex. Also smell some veggies of some sort. The taste doesn't really give any hint of a Bourbon barrel aged stout. Rather light, overtly roasty or smokey. Not a lot of coffee or craem in this beer. Makes me think more of Guiness. Lighter than something with 8.5% abv in it.

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Photo of Jwale73
3.37/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle served in my DT tulip. Bottled on July 2006 notched on the label. Poured two shades shy of black with a quarter inch, khaki-colored head that quickly dissipated and coalesced into a froth around the edges. A few strands and spots of lacing revealed during the tasting. Great nose on this one - bourbon vanilla, malt and maybe a hint of toffee. Taste pales in comparison to the nose. Similar qualities, but very much watered down. Some roasty/char qualities, but flavors are so muted. Mouthfeel is medium-light with a mild, tingly background effervescence and a little acidity that comes out around the salivary glands. This is a pretty weak example of the style, and definitely not worth the four dollar price tag; however, alcohol is pretty well-hidden.

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Photo of maximum12
3.55/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to BEERchitect who sent me a four-pack of these lovelies this week. I have the hankerin' for less than 22 oz. of wicked stuff before I have to hop an airplane tonight, & this one fits the bill nicely.

Poured in my 3-4 oz. Autumn Brew Review taste, just for the heck of it. Black with tiny, tiny amber highlights peeking around the edges. Vigorous little head that falls quickly. A warm glow of moonshine comes welling up once the temp begins to rise. Along with the sweet malts. Very nice.

Jefferson's Reserve tastes good, not great (thank goodness, since I didn't want to have to start a conveyor belt from Kentucky...). First impression, almost before the taste hits, is that this is thin for the style, along the lines of one of Tyranena's fine porters rather than a big, bruising stout. The bourbon comes along right after that & it's quieter, subtler, gentler bourbon that some of the bombs out there. Vanilla steps up, & there's a bitter, burnt edge in there too, mixed in with the background sweets of the malts. Easy to drink for a beer this big, but while I'm enjoying the acrid taste of burning toast right now, not sure I'd like it beer after beer.

This is a good brew for when wants a taste of bourbon without having one's palate blown to hell or being unable to operate bulldozer's after a single glass. Glad I have a few more!

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Photo of iRun2Beer
2.95/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

Photo of TurdFurgison
3.65/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle (Mustard Seed Market in Fairlawn had this in singles). The beer poured a black color with a thick tan foam. The aroma was about right, bourbon and roasted malts, rich and sweet. The taste was decent, lots of bournon highlights but the malts came through kind of diminished. It was really a pretty good flavor but not as rich as the smell. The mouthfeel is easy to rate low, this was just way thinner than you'd expect for the style. I was under the impression that thick beers are generally barrel aged, maybe I'm wrong but this seems true in general based on my experience, The thinness does keep the drinkability up, but still I'd prefer a fuller body.

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Photo of Daniellobo
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice bourbon aged stout, in particular with a memorable final rounded sense.

Presentation: 16 oz draft offering. Menu notes style, general characteristics, and 8.5% Alc. by Vol. Served in a pint shaker glass.

A - Black pour with deep brown edges, short creamy head with moderate retention, fair surface memory and nice touches of lacing.

S -Malty vanilla and bourbon nose, with a nice sense of chocolate, a tad generic but rather pleasing.

T - Nice malty range with good notes of chocolate, touch of coffee, and a nice bourbon vanilla range.

M - Medium-full body with moderate carbonation, and a nice creamy flow. A bit thin for the imperial edge of the style but while a bit short for the standard it does not hinder the enjoyment.

O - Very nice flow, rich and long with a good threshold.

Notes: Happy to revisit this one. It might feel a tad generic at first, but it hits a nice upper bracket for a nice barrel aged stout, with a solid bourbon touch, and a rich range. On tap this is almost a go-to kind of thing… In particular with this price-quality ratio for this area.

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Photo of Pencible
3.67/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This poured a nearly opaque dark mahogany with almost no head. It smelled like oak and molasses and soy and bourbon, with some roasted coffee and bitter chocolate. It tasted like lots of old oak, with bourbon and (day old) coffee and bitter chocolate. It was watery with some carbonation, and had a bitter aftertaste. Overall this was tolerable, but really not great. The flavor elements were technically correct, but poor quality so they weren't tasty at all, and lacked any complexity. It had weak body too, although the alcohol was well hidden so it was easy enough to drink. One of the worst bourbon barrel stouts I've had.

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Photo of cpetrone84
3.8/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A-pours a nearly opaque black color that lets a little red hue through on the edges, the head is pretty tight and fizzy lingering for a little, khaki colored, with a nice lace left on the side of the glass.

S-the nose has lots of rich dark chocolate, very decadent, a nice oak presence with a faint touch of bourbon from the barrel. Roasted malts and a touch of nuttiness to it in the back.

T-roasted maltiness with a lot of rich dark chocolate, very creamy and decadent chocolate. a solid oak presence and a hint more bourbon than the nose but still light enough to not detract from the flavor. The back has a touch of nuttiness and a faint note of some slightly burnt coffee.

M-this is a little thin, medium bodied and very smooth and creamy on the palate. well carbonated to give it a good crisp finish. its just too thin.

D-very tasty brew and quite subtle showing no signs of the larger abv. the body really detracts from the quality but the flavors are pretty tasty, a little one dimensional, all roasted maltiness but the rich chocolate actually gives it notes of sweetness.

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Photo of jaxon53
3.9/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served slightly chilled, in a pint glass. Poured a deep whiskey brown, almost black, with about one finger of tan bubbly head. Dissapeared quickly into a ring around the glass. Very little lacing. Somewhat of a strong smell of Bourbon (of course), wood, and maybe a touch of chocolate. Tasted again, of Bourbon, wood with a sweet start and alcohol finish with little carbonation. Was a nice balanced, full bodied complex brew. Comparable to an Oaked Yeti. This ones a sipper for me.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
4.42/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Comes out of the bottle a deep, opaque coffee sable with an average tan head. Rich, smoky, chocolaty, coffee-ish aroma has just a touch of sweetness and is very appetizing. Rich flavor is rather sweet and slightly bitter, and has woody, fruity and coffee components with a hint of unsweetened chocolate. Texture is fairly smooth and nicely fizzy with a firm but not fierce bourbon bite.

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Photo of Durge
3.62/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pretty much opaue black in appearance with a meager ring of light tan head with some strips of lacing in its wake. The aroma is light coffee chocolate with very whispy touches of rye and malt. The flavor brings very bitter charcoal, almost ash tray (but not quite) and lemon. I get some butterscotch licorice, but not so much the bourbon. It's mid-bodied to thinnish in feel, fair carbonation and drinkable enough. Generally on the mild side for the style, not bad but not particularly memorable.

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Photo of gtermi
3.26/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Vintage 2006

A: This beer pours a very dark black body with a thin tan head that quickly fades to nothing.

S: There really isnt any bourbon at all and that really disappoints me. All I really get is strong sweet dark malt.

T: The bourbon really faded out of this beer and it has really turned into just a basic tasting stout. The beer really only has a strong chocolate flavor and a tiny bit of bitterness that doesnt last long.

M: The beer is really easy to drink and has a tiny bit of crispness on the back on the throat.

O: This beer didnt age too great and I would love to do a side by side with a new bottle just to see the difference.

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Photo of thegerm87
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of stortore
4/5  rDev +5.5%

Photo of Dogbrick
3.58/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sample at the Most Honorable SuperHappyFun Stout Tasting. Bottle from Ashland Beverage Center in Ashland, KY. This beer pours a deep murkly brownish-black color with a medium light beige head that diminishes steadily. Patches of lacing on the glass. Aroma of chocolate malt, soft bourbon and coffee. Medium-bodied with roasted malt and coffee flavors and a bourbon/oak undertone. Touches of tobacco and hops as well. The finish is roasty with a hops and coffee aftertaste. Decent all around.

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Jefferson's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Stout from Bluegrass Brewing Co. - East St. Matthew's
3.79 out of 5 based on 438 ratings.
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