Bourbon Barrel Quad (BBQ) | Boulevard Brewing Co.

665 Reviews
Bourbon Barrel Quad (BBQ)Bourbon Barrel Quad (BBQ)

Brewed by:
Boulevard Brewing Co.
Missouri, United States

Style: Quadrupel (Quad)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
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

Added by jdubjacket on 07-11-2008

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Reviews: 665 | Ratings: 2,336
Photo of awayne56
4.44/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

To get the full effect of the brewer's magic allow this beer to warm some and sip it slowly savoing each sip. Delicious and complex.
A - Dark tea color, with a 1/2 inch tan head that dissipates quickly. Zero lacing on my glass which is ok by me for this style. Did I say murky? Very murky, almost dirty looking which may turn off some. I like it. The appearance is full of character, not transparent.
Smell - Not much until the beer warms some and then I pick up mostly caramel and some bourbon.
Taste - A juicy blend of fruitiness - cherries - and malt - caramel/vanilla. If you take a moment between sips you'll notice some spiciness of the finish
Feel - Very drinkable, thin not thick feeling with a little booze burn
Overall - Already a fan of The Sixth Glass, I love this beer. Delicious, complex. An awesome sipping beer to pair with a cigar and conversation. For me the ABV is the only downside though the ABV is typical of the style. Just take it slow remembering it is a sipping beer not a session beer.

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Photo of futiledevices
4.53/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Look: Medium tan head, dark, opaque brown amber in color
Smell: Bourbon, dark cherry, yeasty bread dough, baked apples, leather, hard crack caramel
Taste: Wood, honey, alcohol, slightly tart cherry on the back end that brightens the flavor, toffee, raisin, black tea, and a little bit of clovey eugenol finish
Feel: Warm and chewy

Bottled 11/10/16, 12oz bottle poured into a tulip glass. Delicious, woody, rich beer with some high fruity notes that lift the flavor up and slightly mask the high ABV. Not my #1, but definitely in my top 10 quads. Worth the $17 I paid for a 4-pack.

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Photo of HattedClassic
4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours a nice light tan colored head that dissipates quickly but still leaves a nice ring around the inside of the glass. The beer itself is a very appealing and interesting color. It seems to be a dark reddish purple like a perfectly ripe plum. It's a very nice look to it.

The beer smell and taste are pretty good. The notes that come out are a very nice light cherry contrasting from the malt notes. The malt notes are a nice moderate caramel and a sweet dark fruit note such as dates and raisins. The bourbon note is interestingly moderately light and complements the malt notes. There is a little bit of alcohol but the sweetness adds to the beer more than it takes away from it.

The feel is good. It's a heavy bodied beer but it feels a bit more thin than you would expect. However, that just makes the beer a bit more drinkable than a beer of this caliber should ever be.

Overall, this is a fantastic beer and worth getting your hands on. The beer is top notch and is fairly distinct in a good and subtle way from other beers of a similar style.

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Photo of craftbeersweden
4/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vintage 2014 Edition.

This bottled has matured 2 years in Florida since I bought it in February 2015.

The beer pours hazy and orange-brown with a thin head. No lacing on the glass.

Nose: Raisin, plum, oak, Bourbon, syrup, grain, vanilla and toffee.
Taste: Deep and complex. Plum, raisin, brown sugar, Bourbon, vanilla, spices and wood.
Mouth: Medium to full body. High carbonation. Warming alcohol at the end.

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Photo of MinerBob
3.33/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Popped the cork it smelled like wine and bourbon. It poured a tan tea color with a strong head. This is the first beer I tried that has been aged in bourbon barrels it has a subtle bourbon flavor so not really being a fan of bourbon its kind of funky. The mouth feel is good with an easy swallow. The bottle is 25.4 oz for $15 pretty sure it's not that good.

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Photo of HipCzech
4.22/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving: 12 oz bottle ("best before 09SEP2018") poured into a Spiegelau beer tulip.

Appearance: Murky reddish copper brown, building a nice, frothy head of tan foam that leaves long streaks of lace. Poured too vigorously, dislodging some yeasty sediment.

Smell: Vinous, fruity opening rolls into warmer caramel, vanilla and wood notes.

Taste: Boozy, malty with both tart and dark fruit (cherries, figs and prunes). Caramel, brown sugar and vanilla notes round out the palate before deeper wood notes enter.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, creamy smooth with just enough carbonation and alcoholic tingle.

Overall: Boozy, fruity, complex quad with terrific contrast yet balance between vinous cherry and bourbon barrel notes.

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Photo of Samlover55
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

.750ml Bottle, with a BB Date of 9/2017 sitting in the cellar since last April
Poured into a Libbey Tulip Glass
L- deep red, almost brown with quickly dissipating head
S- strong notes of the candi sugar, raisins amidst complex dark fruit, slight booziness and cherry notes
T- sweet malty character enhanced by the dark fruit, followed by a mellow blend of the cherries and bourbon, with a slightly spicy finish, and vanilla on the aftertaste
F- highly carbonated, medium-bodied, with a slight syrupy feel
O- this is a special beer, where the natural sweetness of the Quad is really balanced out by the barrel and the cherries.
Another great job by Boulevard.

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Photo of erk0607
4.32/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Look: Dark copper hue, with off white head, lasted about a minute turning into nice lacing that hugged the rim of the glass slightly. Small bubbles effervescing. Clear.
Smell: Dark stone fruits, a bit of malt, a bit of alcohol/spirits from the aging. Slightly sweet.
Taste: Sweet, plum, bourbon, oak/char, caramel.
Feel: Very smooth, heavy but not quite motor oil... foams up on the palate though for an enjoyable, lightly carbonated sip.

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Photo of ZebulonXZogg
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a reddish brown with an off white head that fades quickly and leaves a small ring. Minimal lacing.
Aroma is caramel and toffee.
Relatively sweet overall, and a bit syrupy. Just a hint of bourbon.
Smooth texture, moderate carbonation.
This went down very easily, the high ABV Just kind of sneaks up on you.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.31/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Boulevard Brewing Co. "Bourbon Barrel Quad"
12 fl. oz. brown glass bottle, "BEST BY... 09SEP2018"
$4.99 @ Total Wine & More, Cherry Hill, NJ

Look: Very hazy brown with a ruby cast and orange & gold highlights. The sediment was disturbed and large bits can be seen floating. Very fine bubbled, seemingly moderate carbonation - not a whole lot of activity going on. The creamy yellowed light tan head dropped fairly quickly to an almost but not quite full surface covering. Limited spotty lacing.

Smell: A quick passing note of Belgian yeastiness/phenols, Bourbon, oak, dark sugar, dark skinned fruit, coconut.

Taste: Fruity (sharp red fruit, dark skinned fruit... maybe raisin, plum and cherry in the finish), oaky/woody, clear Bourbon, brown sugar, medium-dark caramel, Belgian yeast character (subtle plastic, spice, banana), subtle vanilla. It's moderately bitter (listed on the back label as 26 IBUs), especially in comparison to the sugary malt which falls somewhere between "sweetish" and "sweet", but it's also subtly tart, and it finishes drying with a touch of spiciness and some cherry as the malt steadily fades. The alcohol doesn't readily appear but it's there helping to dry it.

Feel: Medium bodied with a touch of sugariness, a little lighter than I thought it might be, but good with a very-fine bubbled, apparently natural moderate carbonation level. It gently tingles before warming to become airy/foamy and then smooth.

Overall: Quite impressive. I was not initially in love with the flavor, although I loved the aroma, until it warmed a bit. At that point it opened up and became quite complex. This is another great beer to relax with: a cigar beer, or one that you sip at while reading "War And Peace" in your high-back leather chair while the fire gently crackles ;) In the end, although the sum of its parts don't seem to lead there, there is something kind of magical and special about it.

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Photo of DraconusDesanctus666
4.36/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 oz bottle (smokestack series) BB Nov 10 2018,into a Funky Buddha snifter.

Thick creamy off white head ,that stands almost 2 fingers tall.Dark hazy brown,with light red hues.Distorted light showing through the glass,and lots of goopy sediment floating around.Minimal carbonation.

On the nose I get mostly sweet malts,nuts,smoked wood,caramel,and even some bright yet faint citrus notes.Slight hints as bourbon as well,but not as prominent as I thought it would be.

On the palate I get mostly sweet malts,and bright citrus up front,followed by caramel,nuts,smoked wood,and slight barrel flavors.The bourbon is hard to detect.

The mouth feel is medium,with some alcohol warming.

This is a good quad,a little less bourbon,and more sediment than I expected,but a very nice brew.

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Photo of KettleBellFreak
4.43/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Happy to drink this one. bb aug2018

Huge nose of honey, malt, nuts, bourbon, honey and a light herbalness too it.

Taste was great barrel character, ginger, spice, malt and a slight sweetness that I couldn't decide if it was a syrupy sweet or a fruit sweet. Expected more bourbon but got much more barrel.

Mouthfeel was big and carbonated, but thick. Great balance.

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Photo of kevinlater
4.12/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2015 vintage, best before sep 30 2017 as per the LCBO's re-labeling. raisin, brown sugar, and mild cherry flavours blend incredibly well with the soft (but not weak!) layers of oak and vanilla coming from the barrel-aging. a very easy-going alcohol bite makes this a surprisingly easy-drinking beer at 11.8%. i don't find this beer complex at all, or any kind of stellar, but it's a warming treat that i enjoyed every sip of. i would definitely like to have this again in the future. recommended for big beer fans!

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Photo of Cramshawbar
3/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I knew what I was getting into with a bourbon quad, a style I don't like. But just because I don't like a style, it doesn't mean I won't try it, especially when it originates from Boulevard. And I was right. No, I still don't like this, but Boulevard at least managed better than others (to my liking at least). The cherry is somewhat recognizable (usually the fruit indicated is drowned by the bourbon). No head, no lacing, murky glassful of tamed booziness. The best feature is the nose.
Anyway, once I am finished with this bottle of 2015 vintage, I will never try again but I am glad I have done so for Boulevard's sake.

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Photo of CHickman
4.22/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2015 Vintage, pours dark red/chestnut brown color with a foamy 1-2 finger sand colored foamy head that was full of bubbles and faded around average time and left minimal spotty lacing and a ring of foam around the glass.

Smells of sweet malt, raisins, brown sugar, toffee, toasted grains, French toast and dark fruit. There are a lot of earthy notes but only faint whiffs of the oak barrels and bourbon. For a Bourbon Barrel Quad it was light on both the bourbon and barrel.

Flavor has a lot more fruity characteristics and complexities, bringing the additions of cherries, booze like dark rum, faint piney hops, yeast and peppery spices in addition to the sweet malt, raisins, toffee, brown sugar, toasted grains, French toast and dark fruit. It has a red wine qualities like pinot noir, bringing more berries into the mix with the oak and sweet rich malty tastes. It has spices in the finish and nice woody barrel notes which covers the 11.8% ABV quite well.

Mouthfeel is smooth yet thick and on the heavy side, but not very thick. The carbonation is mellow and almost flat but that works out well as the booze always seems to peek through so that combo helps it flow down easier than it should as it allows the malt flavors to be the star of the show. It got better as it warmed, allowing more tart fruity notes and sweet malt/bready aspects to come through in the lingering candied sugar finish. Really enjoyable, my only real disappointment was that the bourbon and barrel notes were not stronger. Overall it was a damn good beer.

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Photo of justintcoons
4.02/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter.

Murky, yeast-laden mahogany brown with a short head that dissipates immediately.

Raisin, prune, black plum, red grape, toffee, caramel, bourbon, and charred oak.

Loads of dark fruit. Raisin, prune, dates, black plum, pinot noir, and hints of bing cherry. Caramel and toffee with touches of banana. Light bourbon presence with notes of charred oak and vanilla.

Medium bodied, slick, oily, and warming with moderate carbonation.

Complex with a nice balance bordering on the sweeter side.

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Photo of lic217
3.91/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Look: Cloudy brownish/red, head dissipates fast, big floating
Aroma: Alcohol, bourbon, vanilla
Taste: Follows the nose, plus some dark fruit flavors, finishes slightly sweet, big alcohol finish
Feel: Drinks big, highly carbonated
Overall: Good, not great. Does not drink much like beer.

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Photo of haazer
3.87/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

2014 bottle.

Pours a deep copper colored, highly carbed beer with about a finger and a half of lasting tan head. The scent is a blend of vanilla, cherries, oak and bourbon notes. The sticky "mary jane candy like" malt nose is there that is my own way of describing a belgian quads nose. Once the head dissolves and the beer is exposed the bourbon scent becomes stronger. The flavors are somewhat subdued. I pick up the cherry at first, then the vanilla and the bourbon take over. I get a feeling these barrels are pretty charred. Can't taste the booze at all, but I also don't really pick up the flavors of a quad. There is a good malt backbone to this beer thats felt in the aftertaste. The mouth is chewy, highly carbed and full bodied.

I was highly intrigued by this beer when I bought it. Though good, I think I set my expectations too high for it. Maybe I shouldn't have cellared it so long. Still very solid though.

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Photo of THSdrummer
4.32/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours murky, with a dark-copper, burgundy hue. Head formation is two fingers of off-white head. Nice and foamy, with moderate to strong retention. Nice considering the barrel aged aspect, but not great for a quad. Belgian yeast esters, bourbon, barrel, plum, and cherries fill up the aroma. Clearly Belgian, but with an American bourbon twist. Off to a solid start. Notes from the base beer - Sixth Glass - shine through in the flavor profile, with notes of fig, Belgian yeast esters, and plum come through first. The bourbon, barrel, and cherries pop through later. Strong flavor profile, with loads of complexity. Mouth feel is medium-thick, with a filling consistency. Texture has some minor grainy notes to it, but otherwise smooth. Overall, a well-crafted beer that plays a wonderful twist on Boulevard's Sixth Glass. The bourbon notes are well-played, without being overpowering, or off-putting.

Served in a 12oz snifter.

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Photo of tbryan5
4.39/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A-Pours a reddish pink and brown gold with lots of sediment and a nice head.
S- Sweet, boozy. A tad fruity with dark fruits predominating.
T- Wow. A great base quad that was further enhanced by the addition of cherries and oak barrel aging. It offers everything its advertising.
M- Slightly creamy and a medium mouthfeel. Good carbonation.
D- This beer lives up to its rating. Try it if you haven't.

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Photo of 10Design
4.02/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have been putting off buying this beer due to the label, for some reason as a a designer, I just can't stand the label of this beer. However, that has nothing to do with the actual review.

Look: Dark copper quad, thick head dissipates to a white film.
Smell: Sweet, fruity, light alcohol tinge.
Taste: Different than a typical Belgium quad, way sweeter, caramel taste. Bourbon definitely comes through in hints of vanilla and oak.
Feel: Tingly on the tongue, very thin however, though also smooth.

Worth a try, would not buy a four pack.

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Photo of raynmoon
4.43/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours out like a quad, hazy, ruby red with a fluffy tan head. Smell is cherry juice. It's all cherries. Cherries and some spice. Taste brings in the bourbon. Great vanilla and oak mix with muddled cherry and spicy yeast. It's great. This is just a great beer. I was expecting more barrel, given the name.

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Photo of donspublic
4.52/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle into tulip, massive 2 finger tan head, recedes to 1 finger after about 5 minutes, still hanging around as I drink, nice lacing, beautiful beer. Brownish amber in the glass, somewhat hazy and some visible yeast. Smells initially of bourbon after it is poured, as it warms up some cherry is peeking thru. Taste is incredibly complex. Getting a tart cherry/bourbon flavor up front then it fades into more fig, caramel, toffee and the vanilla finishing out the end. Finish is semi sweet with more bourbon flavor at the end, it seems boozy, but not in a hot way. Man this was a steal for < $5 off the single rack. I didn't splurge for the 4 pack in case it didn't float my boat. But man it is a boat floater. And to think this shit is year round. Nice. I also like that the barrel aging play's very well with the yeast, I get a somewhat similar taste profile on Wooden Rooster from Tallgrass. Midwest be knocking it out

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Photo of SHODriver
4.5/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured into a snifter to a deep brown with some reddish highlights so overall a nice mahogany color. The beer is topped by a finger and a half of dense cream colored head that retains well and leaves some lacing
S: Smells of dark fruits and caramel with some nice vanilla from the bourbon barrels. Some mulling spices and cherry as well
T: Taste is dark fruits with caramel, vanilla and oak with some nice spicyness toward that back with a little bit of alcohol soaked cherry. Swallow is more caramel and dark fruits with some more vanilla, oak and lingering spice.
M: The beer has a body that is on the heavier side of medium with a somewhat creamy mouthfeel. The carbonation is soft and slightly prickly at times while the beer finishes on the drier side of things.
O: Overall this is one very nice quad and the addition of the bourbon barrels adds some nice dimensions to it. It drinks well and if you like Belgian beers with a bit of a twist this is one to get your hands on.

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Photo of ClavisAurea
4.39/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2015 vintage served at warmer cellar temps in a tulip

Appearance: cherry copper with a fluffy and sticky khaki head, light sediment and floaters

Nose: bourbon, oak, vanilla, cherries, alcohol, dark fruits, slight marshmallow, coconut

Taste: follows the nose perfectly but with some added sweetness from the alcohol. The booziness is very understated for a 11.8% ABV BBA Quad; I would put this more in the 8-9% range, very dangerous. Nice barrel complexity, I believe the cherry shines through the bourbon here.

Overall: this is one of the better quads I've ever had. It lacks the super aggressive barrel character that Firestone Walker takes on (Stickee Monkee) and I do think it lacks the grace and finesse that traditional Quad's from Belgium Rochefort 10 or LaTrappe Quad) tend to exhibit. However, this is an American version and it takes on a life of its own. I'm excited to see how this beer changes in a few years.

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Bourbon Barrel Quad (BBQ) from Boulevard Brewing Co.
4.22 out of 5 based on 2,336 ratings.
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