Bourbon Barrel Quad Barrel-Aged Ale (BBQ)
Boulevard Brewing Co.

Bourbon Barrel Quad Barrel-Aged Ale (BBQ)Bourbon Barrel Quad Barrel-Aged Ale (BBQ)
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Style:
Belgian Quadrupel (Quad)
Ranked #9
ABV:
11.2%
Score:
95
Ranked #911
Avg:
4.28 | pDev: 10.28%
Reviews:
779
Ratings:
2,742
From:
Boulevard Brewing Co.
 
Missouri, United States
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Gots
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SCORE
95
World-Class
Bourbon Barrel Quad Barrel-Aged Ale (BBQ)Bourbon Barrel Quad Barrel-Aged Ale (BBQ)
Notes: Based loosely on the Smokestack Series’ The Sixth Glass, this abbey-style quadrupel is separated into a number of oak bourbon barrels where it ages for varying lengths of time, some for up to three years. Cherries are added to make up for the “angel's share” of beer lost during barrel aging. Selected barrels are then blended for optimum flavor. The resulting beer retains only very subtle cherry characteristics, with toffee and vanilla notes coming to the fore.

19 IBU
Reviews: 779 | Ratings: 2,742 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of OK_Denise
4.31/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This is a really yummy Quad! I had no idea it would be so tasty when I bought it. I just wanted to try something new. It is not overly strong or tasting of alcohol, which is nice. I enjoy a lot of Boulevard beers and this is one of the better ones, for sure.

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Photo of sjdevel
4.21/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

LOOK * 1-2 finger head poured out of a 12 oz bottle. Big bubbles - decent retention for a barrel aged / high abv beer. Nice lacing and activity.
SMELL * smells boozy - caramel and molasses - rich wooden barrel notes - earthy
TASTE * nice Belgian yeast and spice upfront - alcohol burn comes in next - fades out and then some rich sweet caramel and tobacco - barrel flavor is powerful - plum and fig come in - a nice earthiness left afterwards - with the high abv and fruity notes, this one seems like I am drinking a Barley Wine.
FEEL * a bit thinner than I had hoped but with the high abv and barrel aging, I can understand
OVERALL * This is a really good barrel aged beer - the base beer is wonderful even without the barrel character - this isn't one that I could drink often, but a few here and there would be enjoyable.

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Photo of DanO1066
4.02/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle fm a 4-pack picked-up at the Mt. Vernon Market here in Baltimore. Quite a (off-white) head top of a cloudy red-gold body. The head settles reasonably quickly, leaving a partial hazy cap with some lacing. Bourbon and maybe a hint of cherry on the nose. Bourbon and maybe vanilla on the tongue. As that head might suggest some aggressive carbonation. I'll probably do this again.

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Photo of MattDecker
4.44/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Look: pours a beautiful amber gold color, light tan head that lingers for a bit
Smell: both sweet and tart cherry, Belgium sugar, a little of that banana candy smell that it typical.witb Belgian's I find, very little boozy
Taste: very smooth! Wheat malt, light fruity, cherry, plum, the briefest of tartness, little bitter on the end in a nice way
Feel: full mouthfeel, but not heavy like a stout or Porter, nice refreshing crisp carbonation.
Overall: a pleasant drink. A full experience that is a crisp hearty beer.

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Photo of bwriley4
4.73/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This is a boozy, fun to drink, Belgian quad. It definitely is bang for your buck and not one to drink lightly. As beer fills you quickly, this is an enjoyable beer as one bottle is more than enough to raise your joy level. If you enjoy a Belgian ale or enjoy a good bourbon, you will love this beer.

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Photo of Radome
4.31/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a Duvel tulip glass.

L - Copper colored beer with orange highlights. Slightly cloudy. Light tan head is fluffy, sticky and persistent.

S - Good aromas of malted grain, bread yeast, bourbon whiskey and toasted oak. A whiff of boozy alcohol.

T - Flavors of a strong Belgian dark ale blend well with those of bourbon and oak. If anything, the bourbon barrel flavors are more prominent than the ale's.

F - Medium to thick body with moderate, creamy carbonation. Medium hops bitterness blends with a slight astringency from the oak tannins and together they balance well against the malt sweetness. Slightly hot alcohol presence.

O - A very tasty bourbon barrel beer, but the base quad gets a bit lost behind the barrel character.

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Photo of JBDE16
4.74/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Incredible beer here
On the nose I got very sweet cherries, marshmallows, and it is really inviting and nice.

Mouth is very smooth, with a nice dense carbonation. the beer is fruity, malty and sweet. Reminds me of a fruity sugary cereal.

The finish is fast and bitter with a little vanilla, bourbon, and wood

You would never be able to tell this is a 11.2% ABV beer if you did not read the label.

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Photo of Parmesan
3.99/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L:. Pours a muddy purple brown with a very foamy but quickly dissipating light tan head.

S:. Lots of notes caramel, some toffee, vanilla, molasses, a touch of cherry. The Bourbon is there but not overwhelming.

T:. Large notes of caramel, toffee, vanilla and molasses, a touch of cherry, hints of Bourbon but not overwhelming. This is a solid quad but not mind-blowing.

F:. Lower carbonation, full body.

O:. Overall, pretty good quad but there are others I like better.

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Photo of MissouriMule
4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Boulevard should have left their Quad alone. I try to rate objectively on fidelity to the genre, and I know barrel-aged suds are en vogue. Still, I cannot help but rate this beer as just past mediocre on taste and overall. The barrel aging has, to my tastes, taken away the brightness and great nuance of The Sixth Glass, to replace it with a bludgeoning of cask and dark fruit. There is, to be sure, remaining depth and nuance, but you will have to find it by groping your way around this dark room of an ale. Save some money and get the Sixth Glass six-pack that costs the same as four of this.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
4.37/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle into a tulip glass
Appearance – The beer pours a murky reddish brown color with a tiny fizzy white head of foam. The head fades very fast leaving a touch of lace on the sides of the glass.
Smell – The aroma of the brew is very strong of a bourbon smell mixed with some nice dark fruit aromas of cherry, plum, and raisin. Along with these aromas comes some smells of bread and candied sugar and a little bit of yeast and spice. The spice is light and consists of a clove and coriander flavor, which complement the rest of the smells well and produce a nice boozy and fruity aroma overall.
Taste – The taste begins with a somewhat bready and fruity flavor of cherry and plum. Along with these tastes comes some nice and subtle warming boozy tastes of bourbon and cherry liquor with a nice strong flavor of clove and some candied sugar sweetness. As the taste moves on the booziness gets more pronounced and is joined by some flavors of coriander and more clove as well as some yeasty flavors. These tastes take the taste to the end, where they are joined by a touch of char to leave one with a nice and warming taste to linger on the tongue.
Mouthfeel – The body of the brew is medium in thickness and creaminess with a carbonation level that is slightly higher. For the quad style, mixed with the bourbon and fruit. The feel is excellent for the style and makes for a nice sipper.
Overall – This is a great quad with lots of great bourbon flavor and a good dark fruit base that isn’t too sweet. A great quad for the price.

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Photo of mushroomcloud
4.21/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12oz with a best by date of 02JUL2020, opened 12-29-19.
1/4" off white head with short retention - falls to a cap in a minute. Orange/amber ale against the light with some yeast in suspension, not opaque and not clean.
Complex nose with multiple subtle aromas...caramel, barrel, fruit (apple/cherry) - Nothing stands out above the rest, nicely balanced and an appealing nose overall.
Fruit, faint but noticeable vanilla, caramel, apple skin, yeast....cherry cola, lots goin on here.
Medium body, low to medium carbonation. Long finish with some boozy heat. Definite warming effect @ 11.2%. Some lingering sweetness.
Outstanding. This is a fantastic beer, so complex and subtle - full of flavor and easy to drink, watch out for the 11.2%.

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Photo of thehyperduck
4.14/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

750 mL corked & caged bottle bought at the LCBO several years ago and kept safely in the cellar since; this is the 2015 vintage (listed at 11.8%). An affixed importer label has a BB date of Sept 2017. Side rant: best by dates are fine on everyday pale ales or lagers, but I'll be the judge of when high octane stuff is past its prime, tyvm.

Pours crystal-clear, with a ruby red copper-coloured body that is initially topped with nearly one finger of foamy, off white head that settles off within ninety seconds or so. A creamy collar and thin cap remain in place, with a few sparse arcs of lace scattered about as well; looks fine to me. The bourbon, oak and vanilla still come through loud and clear on the nose, paired with the requisite ethanol fumes and caramelized sugary sweetness. There's also a fair bit of dark fruitiness to the aroma: raisins and dates in particular, with the cherries also fulfilling a minor aromatic role, as well as shades of licorice. Bourbon has never been my thing, but I'm digging this so far.

Wow that's smooth - it's warming, for sure, but the booze is wonderfully integrated with its rich, complex, malty & fruity flavour profile. Hints of fig and date fruit at the forefront, with caramelized sugars also figuring in the strongly - alongside the cherry note, it sort of achieves a fruitcake-like flavour, except the barrel features quickly come to dominate everything else by mid-sip. Burnt wood, vanilla and bourbon booziness take over, as hints of licorice and cherry are obscured in the process, with the finish and aftertaste being along the same lines; on the boozy side, but still surprisingly restrained for nearly 12%, making it one of those potentially dangerous beers. Full-bodied, with a slick, smooth texture and gentle carbonation, resulting in a soft, satisfying mouthfeel.

Final Grade: 4.14, an A-. Boulevard's BBQ is a beastly beer that is best split with a fellow beer geek - this serving was way more than I needed, though I'm sure I'll finish it off... it's a burden I'll manage, somehow. I've still got a 2016 vintage in the cellar, which I plan to crack open at some point soon: I mean sure, this 4-year old bottle is drinking nicely, but maybe 3 years is the sweet spot? I don't precisely recall what I paid for this, but it was in the $12-16 range, and I'd say I got my money's worth - it's a fantastic BBA Belgian-style ale that can be aged with peace of mind.

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Photo of penguinsgoboom
4.31/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a bubbly one finger head. Color is a rusty crimson with a good amount of carbonation. The head retention is impressive. Not much lacing

S: Big cherry and a good bit of alcohol comes across. Some woodiness, earthiness, and light chocolate

T: Can definitely taste the bourbon barrel. That and the cherry are a bit overpowering.

O: Pretty unique take on a quad. The label is definitely not false advertising. However I feel the bourbon barrel and cherry flavor made it a bit too unbalanced. Still a good beer, but not a great one that I dream of having again.

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Photo of octortus
4.05/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL Bottle. ABV 11.8%.
Appearance: Light brown/red, One finger of cream head, Low carbonation, Creamy collar remains, Visible sediment.
Aroma: Cherries, Toffee, Bourbon, Bready malts, Slight vanilla.
Mouthfeel: Above medium body, Alcohol warmth.
Flavour: Fig, Syrup, Toffee.
Overall:

Review: 96

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Photo of scott451
3.93/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2015 vintage. Poured into a nonic. Clear dark amber with a one finger light tan head that diminished to a thin layer
Smells like whiskey.
Tastes like whiskey up front but becomes more cherry fruitcakey towards the finish.

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Photo of sjrider
4.33/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a bottle - dark copper/carmine with quickly dissipating off white head leaving minimal lacing. Nose is cherry sweet and bourbony wood. Taste follows with a slightly boozy ,woody sweetness. Finish is a lingering barrel influence almost on the dry side.Easy drinker and a bit milder than expected.

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Photo of TijuanaTovar
4.68/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

For the style, this is A level for sure. Preferred a bit more over backwoods which is a lot more bourbon forward and a lot sweeter than BBQ. This is very well-balanced and not cloying or overly bourbon/oak. What else is there that compares, for shelfies? If you’re in the mood for a quad with some extra sauce, this is it. ABV well hidden too!

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Photo of JoshGroebner
4.28/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Cloudy caramel brown with a slight amber hue. Two finger light tan head that dissapates quickly with minimal lacing.

Aroma: Very strong, boozy bourbon aroma immediately. Toffee and cherry notes are noticable in a subtle manner, with a touch of vanilla.

Taste: The cherry jumps out a little more than the smell would suggest right away, but it still fades to the background compared to the bourbon notes. Caramel, toffee, vanilla, and just a touch of banana Belgian yeast flavor. A lot of sweet alcohol is present later in the finish, along with some raisins. The taste is where this beer really shines, and evolves with each sip as it warms.

Mouthfeel: Lively carbonation at first which mellows as it warms. Substantial alcohol warmth, but not hot. It's full bodied, but not syrupy or cloyingly sweet.

Overall: At first I thought the base beer would be completely dominated by the barrel notes. The bourbon and cherry flavors are still more upfront than the quad notes, but as it warms, the dark fruit and hearty bready notes of a quad really shine. Very interesting take on the style.

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Photo of MackT
4.3/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a brownish amber. Light tan head. Aroma is bourbonesque, hint of cherries.
Taste is punctuated with the bourbon barrel aging. Mouthfeel is effervescent, carbonation roams. Aftertaste is one that makes you glad that you chose this. Good job Boulevard.

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Photo of Bierman9
4.15/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Enjoying a 12oz bottle today, courtesy of an old high school buddy...

Poured into my trusty Smutty snifter, it's a muted, hazy russet brown color. Head is a decent layer of fine, creamy beige foam, with good lace left on the glass. Has a steady stream of carbo rising within. Aroma has a nice mix of malty caramel, cherries and bourbon. The body is a solid medium to medium-plus, and it has some light prickle on the tongue.

Flavor has a healthy amount of malty sweetness along with cherries, plus some raisins and dates. The bourbon action is on the mild side, mostly just hints of it lurking in the background. Very light on the hopping, the fruity notes linger on the palate in the dry finish. A solid brew!! Thnx, Mark Beckley! Prosit!!

4.15/5 rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2094

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Photo of Thomas_Wikman
4.42/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This is a pretty nice beer for slow sipping with a good meal (like a wine)

Look: Murky brown with a fluffy inch thick off-white head

Aroma: raisin bread, cherry and bourbon

Taste: The flavor is raisin bread, dark fruits, some vanilla, cherry, and bourbon, a pretty unique combination of flavors that is delicious.

Body/Overall: medium to full body, smooth and creamy

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Photo of Ozzylizard
3.99/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Received from @jdell15 in NBS BIF #9. Reviewed 5/12/19. Thanks Jacob!
Marked on the shoulder in white printing “07NOV2020”. Stored at 42 degrees and served at 57 degrees in a hand washed and dried Jester King snifter. Final temperature 60 degrees.
Appearance – 4.
First pour – Light amber, clear.
Body – Red-amber, hazy. A precipitate forms.
Head – Large (Maximum 7.5 cm, aggressive center pour), tan, dense, fizzy. Settles into a medium density head of shorter than average duration. Diminishing to a four mm crown and a thin, rocky, complete cap.
Lacing – None. Not surprising for an 11.2% ABV brew.
Aroma – 4.25 – Sweet “dark fruits”, yeast phenolics. At the end, is that a hint of cherry?
Flavor – 4 – Begins slightly sweet beneath a caramel/date shroud. Ends just a bit sour with a tannic acid twang. Alcohol is in the background the whole way through, subtly noticeable. No hops, no bourbon, no dimethylsulfide, no diacetyl.
Palate – 3.25 - Full, almost creamy, fizzy.
Impression and interpretation – 4 - The fizziness makes it difficult to hold in my mouth and really enumerate the flavors. When I do, the alcohol numbs my oral cavity. While bourbon is not detected up front, it is noticeable on the post-swallow exhale. If this were less fizzy, it would greatly improve the palate and increase the level of more subtle flavors.

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Photo of dcscientist
4.15/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

You definitely feel the 11.2% ABV on this one, but you're more than happy to keep going. This is a very good beer, well worthy of their Smokestack Series lineup. I got a lot of the bourbon flavoring from the barrels, though not as much cherry as I had expected from the description. I figured this beer was a variant of their Sixth Glass, which is the same style but not aged. It was a bit different, maybe just because of the way they aged and combined the beer from various barrels. But who cares about the specifics when you can just sit back and sip this one all night?

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Photo of hoegaardenhero
3.74/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Nice copper brown collar with tightly packed white head with good retention considering abv. Aroma is so so strong of vanilla and bourbon. The bourbon notes are overpowering for both the smell and taste, which is mostly bourbon vanilla and abv. Coconut in there as well. Ok, but tastes sort of artificial because of intense vanilla and bourbon.

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Photo of drtth
4.36/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This bottle has a best by date in July of this year.

The hazy dark cherry wood colored beer pours out into a snifter glass with a 1” tan head that briefly leaves some patches of lacing on the sides of the glass as it soon recedes to a thin irregular island of foam that then disappears entirely, as do the initial patches of lacing. At first sipping creates scattered patches of lacing on the sides of the glass but well before midway through the beer there’s no lacing or foam left at all.

The aromas are rich, smooth and well integrated. They include some bourbon, some malt and some dark cherries. There’s also a good bit of vanilla and, in the background, there are some other dark fruits along with a light touch of oak.

The flavors are much as expected from the nose with the bourbon, some rich malt sweetness and some dark cherries up front along with some vanilla. In the background there are also other dark fruits (plums, prunes) and an almost hidden bit of oak. There’s no bitterness showing but there does seem to be a bit of very light grassy, earthy character.

The mouthfeel is on the full side of medium bodied and smooth with virtually no carbonation. The finish begins as the bourbon and the dark cherries start to recede, to be followed by the malt sweetness and the dark fruit. There’s a light tartness from the cherries that persists through to the semi-dry, slightly earthy ending that also still shows vanilla and some very light oak.

On the whole I am enjoying this beer and would be happy to have it again. The cherries make a nice contribution to the overall complex aroma/flavor profile created by the Quad and the Barrel aging. It’s a perfect beer for sipping by the fire side on a cold winter night.

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Bourbon Barrel Quad Barrel-Aged Ale (BBQ) from Boulevard Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 95 out of 100 with 2742 ratings