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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Quadrupel (Quad)
Ranked #9
Ranked #977
4.28 | pDev: 10.28%
Boulevard Brewing Co.
Missouri, United States
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: 794 | Ratings: 2,780 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by JohnnyK:
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JohnnyK from North Carolina

3/5  rDev -29.9%

Nov 02, 2013
More User Reviews:
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BEERchitect from Kentucky

4.42/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

An increadible beer that defies styles, challenges the taste buds, and pushes the edges of experimental to the brim. All that, and this is a really good beer!

The beer pours a deep ruby, mohogany color that seems to glow with more crimson highlights than any other beer. An off white head takes a 1/4" foot hold and never relinquishes. Lots of lacing on the glass and a moderate haze throughout. A handsome looking beer.

Mouthwatering aromas of deep amber and toasty malts that give a firm base of toffee, rich breads, and a hint of chocolate tucked in closely behind. A lot of fruity character comes undoutedly from the cherry additions but also from yeasty esters giving more berry, apple, and fig character. All this wrapped up in a bourbony, vanilla, and caramel complexity.

Flavors swirl with the bourbon, fruits, and hearty malts giving a newly found taste with every sip. Agressive in the strength of alcohol but delicate in the soft vanillans and cotton-candy caramels. Wood chracter gives a nutty, oaky, and slightly musty character that accents the cherries and gives the yeasty flavors a bit of company. Perhaps a bit tart at times, the beer may have a few bugs on board- but it could be all cherries too.

Body is full, round, rich, but not thick or heavy. In true Quad fashion, the beer's carbonation lifts it off of the surfaces of the mouth and seem to partially evaporate just before the warm and lingering finish.

This is a terrific beer that belongs among the best. Thanks BlueOkie!

Oct 08, 2009
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rorjets from Connecticut

4.91/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

A special gift from my son, who gave it to me on Christmas Day, 2013. I cellared it for a year, and decided to start the New Year, and tick off my 1,0000th beer rating on BA, with this truly excellent brew. Upon pulling the cork, a sweet aroma of cherries and licorice arise from the bottle. Poured from the 750 ml bottle into a Jester King goblet, the smell is intensified. The head is thick, light brown in color, with fine lacing that traces the glass as the beer is quaffed. The body of the brew is orange-brown, with tiny bubbles rising from below, like champagne. The first sip of this abbey style quadrupel highlights the aroma, with a trace of vanilla and bourbon flavor coming through. Despite it's 11.8 abv you can barely taste the alcohol, which is layered with all the other flavors that roll around on your tongue. I know not many beers I enjoy this coming year will be quite as grand as this one, because it sets the bar high, but I am thrilled to be starting 2015 with such a fantastic example of what beer can be!

Jan 01, 2015
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boilermakerbrew from Indiana

5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A- Pours a hazy, deep copper in color. Somewhere between a cherry wood tone the slick brown color on its bottle's label. Medium to large 3 finger head forms and retains very well. Lacing is ok. The body is dark enough to make it opaque, but it is also very hazy.

S- Massively complex. Starts with traditional quad flavors of dark fruits, biscuit-like malts, and a yeasty smell before the barrel takes over. The barrel flavors tend toward vanilla and sweet caramel and toffee. Hardly any trace of bourbon or oak. Cherries are on the back end of this smell.

T- Just like the scent; terrifically complex. Starts with a little more of the cherry and dark fruit flavors before moving toward the barrel flavor. The barrel flavors are fairly sweet and mellowed, mixing between vanilla, char, caramel malts, and toffee, with the cherries making a return on the back end. Biscuity flavor are present throughout the entire drink, taking a backseat and allowing the other flavors to work their magic in the foreground.

M- Smooth as hell, mild in carbonation, and no alcohol heat in the taste. Slight warming effect in the throat, but nothing compared to what it could be with the ABV.

Overall, holy crap! This beer could make Trappists scream in their abbeys. This is like taking the best beers of the old world, mixing them with cherries, America's best bourbon barrels, and fairy dust, and coming out with a beer that could make a grown man cry. Seriously, it's that good. I need to buy more bottles.

Nov 08, 2013
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Nashvillain from Texas

5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I almost don't even want to rate this. I have a hard time admitting that perfection exists, even in something as trivial as beer. Bottled 2/2009 served into a Unibroue tulip.

The pour, even though not vigorous produces a fluffy tan head. Sitting atop a leather base, the tan head lingers. Forever. It recedes slightly, but sticks around coating the glass with a nice lattice lacing, holding on to the sides of the glass for dear life.

Sounds like a bowl of rice krispies. Maybe a cheery fire in the winter time, this beer has something to say, and what it says is "what's up?". It's begging me to take a sip.

The smell immediately bursts forth with tart cherries and caramel. There's some quad spice in the background, but the delicate tartness takes the forefront.

The beer flows into the mouth and fills it first with a quad-like spice. The spice turns into an oaky vanilla and then finally fades into a delicious bourbon sweetness. Holding everything together is a light tartness that ties everything up in a nice little package. The beer is phenomenal. It talks to me on so many levels. Liquid excellence. Perfection even.

Jul 22, 2011
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Mattwm from Missouri

5/5  rDev +16.8%

This is a fantastic beer that has nearly everything, fantastic head, great aroma, lingering taste that lets you remember good times. This is not thick or heavy just wonderful. You will be transported to what beer should be. No defined genera just fantastic taste and aroma.This is a beer that makes me hopeful for other american beers,

Nov 24, 2014
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WithinTheGlass from Kansas

5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I was more than a little excited to see a shelf full of this at my local grocery alcove.

This beer is beautiful. The bottle is the usual "limited release" design from Boulevard, and the pour reveals a deep and promising amber.

The smell REALLY reminds me of Boulevard's own "Rye on Rye." A bit of slick coconut and some strong grainy scents dominate the initial nose. A second whiff reveals cherries and a hint of spice. Perfectly tantalizing!

Tastes like it smells, and (again) reminds me ever so fondly of Rye on Rye. It has a different sort of taste for a quad, and definitely plays more to the bourbon/fruit beer crowd. Oddly enough, Boulevard's "Sixth Glass" might be a better quad... but certainly not a better brew. At room temp, this beer opens up with some delicious dryness and an even bigger dose of cherry pulp. Delicious

Dry, spicy, tangy. The dryness is definitely the defining attribute of the mouthfeel, in my opinion. Outstanding.

This is up there with the very best that Boulevard has to offer. Lightweights and non-commited beer drinkers might consider sharing this (duh) but I had no trouble sipping it down by myself over a few hours. A highly recommended beer, and a truly unique one!

Sep 24, 2013
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biboergosum from Canada (AB)

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

750ml caged and corked bottle - always a thrill to see some of the bigger American whales just show up on yer local bottleshop shelves.

This beer pours a rather murky, dark apricot amber hue, with a teeming tower of puffy, tightly foamy, and mildly creamy tan head, which leaves some tacky wafting fog bank lace around the glass as it very slowly melts away.

It smells of bready, doughy caramel malt, heady Bourbon barrel notes - acrid wood, vanilla, and spicy corn/rye whiskey - muddled dark fruit, in the plum/raisin/date vein, a soft earthy yeastiness, tanned leather, and further generically fruity alcohol. The taste is actually more malty up front, the bready, grainy caramel/toffee sweetness predominating, until a sneakily subtle barrel character seeps in - more real vanilla, more testy wood staves - with a still mixed and matched dark orchard fruitiness, persistent musty leather, and leafy, earthy, and kind of perfumed hops.

The carbonation is certainly active, but in a low-key, genially frothy manner, the body a so-so medium weight, and pretty darned smooth, as even though you can taste the barrel measures, they seem to have no power here, which engenders a mild creaminess to boot. It finishes off-dry, the grainy caramel, varied fruitiness, and boozy wood all working together to convince me that I'm not drinking a 24-proof bevy.

Wow, this is good, nay, great! Except maybe for the lack of cherries (they're probably stirred in there somewhere with the rest of their fruity brethren), but since the brewer was up front about their subtly, Imma let that one pass. Crazy easy to drink, and equally enjoyable, this is a worthwhile ode to the Belgian monastic greats, and from a place where they can see the dead center of Flyover Zone, USA.

Apr 03, 2015
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BuckeyeNation from Iowa

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

"Sure I eat what I advertise. Sure I eat Wheaties for breakfast. A good bowl of Wheaties with bourbon can't be beat."

--Dizzy Dean

Batch 1-2008. Murky caramel in the center and blurry apricot nearer the edges. The firm ecru colored crown reached three fingers on the pour, something that is almost unheard of with barrel-aged beer of this ABV. It looks pretty good during descent, but doesn't deposit much sudsy residue on the glass.

The nose is sweetish and earthy and brown malty, with a modest bourbon presence and no cherries. Not the powerhouse that was expected, though time and warming could change that. Looks like the last chance for craft beer immortality is on the palate.

Bourbon Barrel Quad is a wonderful big beer that has taken more than two years in the cellar in stride. It seems that the body/mouthfeel has broken down a bit (which wasn't unexpected), but the flavor definitely delivers. It helps if you love bourbon whiskey, because it's much more apparent on the taste buds than in the nose.

Mouth, tongue, esophageal and belly warming are more suited to December or January cold than August heat. Then again, good beer knows no season. Flavors include brown bread covered with orange marmalade and cherry jam, English toffee, vanilla bean and several staves worth of oak. What an outstanding sipper.

The only (teensy weensy) fly in the ointment is a mouthfeel that has seen better days. Wait just a minute... by the midway point of the bottle it gains a little chewiness to go along with the glassy smoothness of perfect carbonation.

Bourbon Barrel Quad is yet another outstanding Smokestack Series Ale from the talented folks at Boulevard. Hey guys, if you're listening, please bring back a few of your greatest hits... like Imperial Stout and BBQ. As regular releases if possible.

Aug 14, 2010
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futiledevices from South Dakota

4.53/5  rDev +5.8%
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.

Feb 23, 2017
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brentk56 from North Carolina

4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a dark amber color with a bounteous head that leaves a hieroglyphic pattern of lace on the chalice

Smell: Figs, cherries and brown sugar, up front, with the bourbon barrel clearly coming through; a leathery aspect, too

Taste: Fruity, at the outset, with figs first, brown sugar next and then sour cherries arriving; by mid-palate, the bourbon barrel takes over, with the oaky vanilla flavors dominating, perhaps a bit too much; after the swallow, the sour fruit and bourbon flavors are prominent

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with a high level of carbonation; plenty of warmth as well

Drinkability: Certainly interesting, but the combination of the sour cherry and bourbon flavors just doesn't cut it for me, from a drinkability perspective

Feb 05, 2009
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Nunya from Ohio

3.85/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

You certainly taste the bourbon but for me it's just a little too much, not a good enough balance. I could just water down some bourbon and almost have the same drink.

Feb 19, 2016
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brewskifan55 from Mississippi

4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed in a pint glass. Thanks, Lucky Town, for the share.

A: Clear amber with a mocha one finger head that sits pretty for a while.

S: Bourbon prevails with light cherry and vanilla notes. Sultry and decadent.

T: Holy shit! Without a doubt, the best quad I've tried. So smooth with a bourbon entry followed by dark fruits (raisins, dates, plums). Then the vanilla/cherry backbone smooths this one out so well, you just can't help but want more, more.

M: Medium to heavy with thick, chewy carbonation.

O: I will be seeking this one out very soon. One of the stellar beers to be savored, aged and then savored again.

Dec 29, 2014
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Jugs_McGhee from Louisiana

3.44/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Ah, my favourite style done by a brewery I'm really coming to respect. I can't remember ever having a bourbon barrel aged quad; I'm really excited. 2013 vintage 750ml brown glass bottle with classy understated label and branded red hood-and-wire cap over a branded cork acquired at me local bottle shop and served into an Avery stem-tulip (no goblet is available) in me gaff in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are sky high. 11.8% ABV confirmed. Batch Number: BB13240-1. Best by: 08-2015.

Served cold - straight from me fridge - and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as it's poured.

Pours a 2.5 finger wide head of light khaki colour. Nice thickness and creaminess. Even consistency. Decent complexion. Head retention is very good for the high ABV - about 6-7 minutes. Uneven lacing clings to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

Yeasty sediment sticks to the sides of the glass and is plainly visible floating in the beer.

Body colour is a glowing auburn-red. Semitranslucent but nontransparent. It's a bit light for the style, but I like the appearance overall. Far from the best I've seen in the style, but respectable. I'm excited to try it.

Not unique or special.

Sm: Dark cherry is certainly prominent. Hints of fig and date. Also some unexpected alcohol presence/warmth. Biscuity Belgian yeast. Has some malty sweetness from the Belgian dark and amber malts used. A bit bready, with abundant toffee. Vanilla from the bourbon. The oak wood lends it some spice, but no real toasty character.

Overall, I'm not sure the bourbon/barrel notes are really bringing out the best in the base beer. The bourbon overwhelms the base a bit, hiding the dark fruit and delicate balance I love in a great quad.

In any case, there's plenty of layers and complexity here, but it comes on a bit strong. The blunt aggression of the bourbon runs counter to the fragile build of the quad underneath. I'm optimistic but concerned. It does seem a bit too sweet.

No hop character is detectable.

The cherry is a highlight.

T/Mf: It's slightly too sweet, primarily due to the vanilla sweetness from the bourbon. The bourbon character taken on its own is actually pretty nice; the vanilla bean has depth and doesn't feel artificial, and the oak while quite restrained has a bit of spiciness to it. I would like a bit more of a toasty note though.

That said, I'm not convinced the barrel notes are really coaxing out the best the base has to offer. The dark fruit notes (fig, dates, maybe plum) are concealed by the dominating bourbon, but the cherry does work well here. There's also a faint hint of orchard apple.

The malty base is interesting, with complex layers of caramel and toffee lending it plenty of body. Belgian amber and dark malts also make an appearance and seem well-selected. Fairly bready.

There's a bit of biscuity Belgian yeast character which unfortunately gets drowned out by the bourbon.

No hop character is noticeable. Hides its ABV pretty well, but not as well as the best Trappist quads.

Overall, the flavour profile is pretty well balanced, definitely cohesive, and has plenty of complexity and subtlety, but just isn't as delicately put together or gestalt at the best beers in the style. The best Trappist quads have a fragile intricacy - a nuance - that this beer just lacks. I do think the cherry is lovely, and the bourbon adds some interesting elements, but at the end of the day I'm not sure quadrupel is the best style for bourbon barrel aging.

Good depth of flavour. Above average duration and intensity of flavour.

A bit too full-bodied. Thick, heavy, and big. Well-carbonated. Has a huge presence on the palate, but it calls too much attention to itself and isn't as understated as something like Westvleteren 12. It doesn't have the delicacy, the fragility, or the elegance of the best quads. Smooth and wet, with adequate coarseness to coax out a bit of extra depth.

Not oily, astringent, harsh, gushed, or hot.

Dr: It's a sipper, but still quite drinkable for its high ABV. I like the experimentation, and the beer has some really effective elements (e.g. the cherry), but it doesn't hold a candle to the best Trappist quads. I might pick this up again to age it, but it doesn't have quite what I love in a quad - namely intricate dark fruit, perfect balance, and a delicate texture. Boulevard's delivered a solid beer, but I don't know that I'd recommend this to friends. I can't make up my mind about whether or not the barrel aging here is effective, which probably means it isn't. Going the Three Philosophers route and blending this with a sour might be a good option.

Pairs fantastically with cheddar.

The bourbon and cherry notes - the most interesting aspects of this beer - open up as the beer warms. I'd recommend serving this chilled.

High B-

Nov 26, 2013
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Cramshawbar from Canada (ON)

3/5  rDev -29.9%
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.

Jan 09, 2017
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FBGordon from Florida

3.7/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

While I enjoy the Bourbon notes that come through on the palate, this beer screams "BOOZEY" from start to finish.

Jul 04, 2015
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Damian from Massachusetts

4.22/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Drank from a 12 fl oz bottle purchased at Craft Beer Cellar, Belmont, MA
Best by date on bottle 06APR2019
Served in a goblet

Crystal clear, honey-amber on the pour but dark crimson-amber in the glass. The thinner bodied liquid was topped by a super tight and creamy, finger-plus tall, khaki colored crown that dropped fairly quickly to a thin, lasting cap. Rings of drippy lacing cascaded down the glass and stuck around until the drink’s end.

The aroma was really interesting and rather complex. Quite fruity and sweet with big cherry notes. Nice caramel and dark candi sugar presence too. Spice notes also came through strong. There was a fairly intense raisin and plum quality. Belgian yeast notes lent the beer some fruity esters. Apple and pear were detectable.

The flavor was similar to the nose but not quite as smooth or as rounded. Fruity up front with strong cherry notes. A bit cloying perhaps and slightly reminiscent of cough syrup. Dark malts and candi sugar notes were also apparent. Spicy in the center. Clove and allspice perhaps. The flavor profile dried out as the liquid moved along the palate. Big oaky notes on the back end. The beer finished with a sharp booziness and some lingering, dry, oaky tannins.

Outstanding mouthfeel. Super light, fluffy and frothy on the palate. The liquid contained an extremely finely beaded but appropriately aggressive effervescence that reminded me of what you might find in an authentic take on the style.

Most American breweries have a difficult time making Belgian ales that compare to those which come from the motherland, but Boulevard did an impressive job with this one. While the bourbon seemed to add an excessive amount of heat and the cherry came off as a bit cloying, their attempt to put an American twist on a traditional Quad was commendable. I would love to cellar a bottle or two of this and see how it drinks with more age.

Jan 18, 2018
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Best_Enjoyed_In_Texas from Texas

3.4/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Overall, pretty let down by this. Very little bourbon taste nor as much quad. The cherry taste is subtle. I was really excited to try this, but kind of let down.

Oct 23, 2015
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bobhits from Kentucky

2.9/5  rDev -32.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

2015 variety.

The pour yield a fizzy, what I normally expect from a sour, head. It seems to last and has some retention and lacing, but in a quad it seems really out of place. Nearly to the point I'm questioning what I'm about to drink.

I really cannot smell much of anything. I get this fruity ester that I have gotten in Boulevard's other smokestack series beers, but with nearly nothing behind it. I think there's some chocolate and bourbon or something like that but I honestly cannot get through the esters.

The beer has a lot of rich flavors and character. Bourbon certainly, chocolate, vanilla, Belgian fruits, rum, grapes, plums. I think there's some good stuff going on, however the mouth feel.

The mouth feel is over the top overly carbonated and thin as heck. It completely ruins the beer.

I'm not sure if I'm just the only guy not a fan or what, but the way the smokestack series is carbonated ruins what I think are otherwise decent beers. I'm sorry but they've either changed up the beer, people had older bottles, or I'm just alone in hating the way this drinks. A real shame because I think the flavors in this one are decent.

Quick edit, but if you swirl the glass for 2-3 minutes and get the carbonation out, it really does improve the beer. As this is likely not how it was intended to be, I won't amend the scores, but it makes a world of difference. The aroma and flavors are much more pronounced and the beer is now much more drinkable. Still a bit thin while being rather boozy so take that as you will.

Nov 19, 2015
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Ciocanelu from Romania

4.1/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Hazy amber color with creamy beige head. Aroma has some toffee, brown sugar, light bourbon and some dried dates. Taste is sweet at first with dried fruits and some brown sugar notes. Aftertaste lingers with some bourbony toffee notes. Medium body with medium to low carbonation. Overall it's a decent quad but quite tame for a barrel aged beer.

Jan 19, 2018
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awayne56 from Texas

4.44/5  rDev +3.7%
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.

Feb 27, 2017
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NeroFiddled from Pennsylvania

4.31/5  rDev +0.7%
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.

Jan 23, 2017
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dvorsd from Massachusetts

4/5  rDev -6.5%

Jan 13, 2014
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MarzenMan from Missouri

4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from some random bottle number in the 2,000s in to my official Smokestack goblet. Very dark reddish brown with a ton of head. My pour may have been a little too vigorous for this one.

Smells very strongly of cherries with a little whiskey in the background. You might be able to call the fruitiness plumy or something but I still think it seems like cherry.

Taste is not what you'd expect from any beer but pretty much true to the way this beer was marketed. Quad-cherry-slight Bourbon, in that order. The cherry flavor is more pronounced than I expected but not sweet really. Finishes with some alcohol that works well with the faint Bourbon flavor.

For the ABV I'd say this beer is very drinkable. I def. drank it a little too fast and it became my only beer of the evening :). Good beer and you've been warned about its strength.

Dec 12, 2008
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stakem from Pennsylvania

4.17/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml corked and caged bottle vintage 09 busted out at the pumpkin murren event at Al's by StormKing47. Thanks Josh for the chance to try this brew.

Poured into a snifter, this brew appears a hazed amber color with a creamy yellowish stained head that laces in small patches about the glassware.

The aroma is sweet vanilla goodness initially with lots of malty caramelized sugars running throughout. As the brew gets increasingly warmer, a tartness or tangy indication of brett evolves.

The taste is lightly tart with a caramel, toasty malt flavor. There is a lot of vanilla sweetness which creates a smooth blend of flavors in the mouth before this brew takes a turn into showing off the alcohol flavor and warmth. A toasted flavor of grain lingers in the mouth along with some warmth and vanilla flavoring. As it warms, even more of the bretty indications come forward with a bit of a citrusy tart twang.

This is a medium to full bodied brew with a light level of carbonation. Super drinkable and the alcohol is masterfully first. I am uncertain whether or not the bretty sour incorporation is intended, but I like what it did to this brew.

Oct 25, 2010
Bourbon Barrel Quad Barrel-Aged Ale (BBQ) from Boulevard Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 95 out of 100 with 2780 ratings