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

673 Reviews
Bourbon Barrel Quad Barrel-Aged Ale (BBQ)Bourbon Barrel Quad Barrel-Aged Ale (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: 673 | Ratings: 2,353
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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Photo of Zorro
3.99/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Chill hazed brown colored ale with a medium sized tan colored head.

Smells sweet and strongly of figs. Woody oak scent and a lesser scent of whiskey. Scent of toffee candy. Smells fruity but nothing in particular except fig. I know cherry is in this but I can't smell it.

Starts out sweet with the taste of plum and fig. Taste of whiskey. Mildly smoky taste. Clear taste of cherry. Alcohol not tasted but it is felt.

Mouthfeel is good.

Overall a good quad but not the best I have had.

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Photo of bentrider1957
4.82/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

A: Dark Amber. Slightly Cloudy but to style. Head retention is slight but apparent. Good retention for high alcohol

S: Deep oak with hints of dark fruits like figs and raisins. Also smoke and cherry wood. Very balanced aroma with hints of smoke that doesn't overpower. Not quite as smokey as some similar beers

T: High alcohol but no hint of fusels. Deep character of smoke and high malt character. Well balanced hops that combine well with the tastes of dark cherry, figs, raisins and dates. Complex layers of different and interesting blends of fruits and smoke.

M: Rich mouthfeel with clingy and enjoyable layers of character. Long lasting mouthfeel but no burn for such a high alcohol beer.

O: One of the best beers that I have had. I compare it to Epic Brewing (Utah) Smoked and Oaked. This is a very balanced beer that will challenge your taste buds and make you think about the complexity of a great Quad or Tripel.

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Photo of atr2605
4.5/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-pours a cloudy, almost muddy amber copper color with an off white head that lasts forever, and creates nice lacing
S-tons of vanilla, nutmeg, toasted marshmallow, caramel, some dark fruit in the background
T-dark fruit up front, with some tartness, followed by vanilla, marshmallow, and caramel flavors, with alcohol and more vanilla in the finish
M-medium bodied and smooth with high carbonation
O-very complex and delicious brew. Will definitely continue to seek out

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Photo of scotorum
3.84/5  rDev -9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75


Poured from the 12 oz. bottle into a Unibroue Blanche de Chambly stemmed pilsner.

a: Clear copper with a two inch thick offwhite head which receded slowly to thick surface foam and patchy lacing.

s; Alcohol and dark ripe fruit.

t: Bitter and sour overripe fruit with a mild whiskey undertone. Sour finish. Later more whiskey and fruit flavors become evident.

m; Medium, good body and carbonation tingle.

o; Started out sour enough to dominate the barrel aging not to mention sweet dark fruit quad flavors I would prefer to be tasting. But it did improve a lot as it warmed (the 11.8% ABV may have had something to do with that) and I see others only mentioning a "tartness" at most, so perhaps this first bottle of the $15 fourpack, put up 8/4/16, was not representative. If the rest are better I'll revise.

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Photo of Boto
4.35/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz. bottle from Brewery: This one pours an opaque dark caramel color. There was no head or lacing to it. The nose is good. Some bourbon, candi sugar, malts, dark fruits. The taste is very good. Some bourbon, but not too much. Some sweet malts, vanilla, faint fruits, A really nice quad.

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Photo of Mindcrime1000
4.65/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a single serve bottle, as opposed to the caged 750, into a tulip.

Appearance--Pours a more translucent to clear than expected, but fine two-finger tan head that quickly dissipates to classic lacing. Very quickly settles into something between a weakly-brewed coffee and a dark tea.

Smell--Malt, vanilla, oak, then bourbon in that order, followed by the faintest of cherry, though I wonder if I'm smelling it more because I'm looking for it.

Taste--Similar to the smell, but the bourbon is more pronounced on the palate than it is on the nose. Full disclosure, I am not a bourbon drinker, so the "4.5" may be lower than it deserves. That said, the bourbon/vanilla provides a fine creaminess that goes well with the classic quad malts. Perhaps a little bit cloying on the sweetness, but the carbonation and warming alcohol helps balance that out. I'm still not tasting the cherry that other reviewers have mentioned, but there is a trace of acidity compared to a typical quad that is probably the cherry note I'm just not quite sophisticated enough to derive. Still, an excellent brew.

Feel--Good carbonation and mouth-feel, though some may find it a little "thin" in the body department. I can't help but wonder what just a bit more carbonation would do to provide a crisp or dry note to balance the sweetness.

Overall--Considering I'm not ordinarily a big fan of the bourbon-barrel-aged offerings of this style, this one is excellent, perhaps because the bourbon isn't an "in your face" note, but just part of the overall palate. A very smooth, dangerously-drinkable 11.8 ABV quad.

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Photo of jooler
4.27/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

look is a dried date brown. half inch of yellow head. great lacing on the head.
smell is of tons of bananas. that is basically all i am getting.
taste is bananas, but i also taste cherries. after taste is of wine, maybe a white zin.
feel is pretty damn smooth. not overly carbonated.
overall, a really good quad. and at almost 12%, its very smooth.

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Photo of WunderLlama
4.23/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle poured into pint glass

Dense, billowy two finger taupe foam cap over translucent brown liquid. Looks like brewed tea. Some lacings. Sediment in the bottom of the bottle

Aroma of sweet bourbon, malts

Get a little bourbon on the first taste , tartness, oakiness, toffee

Mouthfeel is thinner than I expected , taste the alcohol on subsequent sips

Good beer

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Photo of BSiegs
4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Gorgeous looking beer. Dark amber to light brown in color. Very opaque. Light caramel head, plentiful small, nitro like bubbles. Phenomenal retention. The aroma has strong belgian character, fruity esters, tart cherry, and slight funk. Raisins, stone fruits. Bourbon and barrel notes are present but subtle. The taste is raisins, figs, stone fruit. Bourbon comes through much more strongly, along with a still subtle but stronger note of oak. Slightly leathery and spicy as well. Medium full body, low-moderate carbonation, and a dry finish with slightly lingering alcohol heat. A really excellent, complex brew.

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Photo of ccg
3.81/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Beautiful, deep, ruby red color with lots of lacing on the glass and healthy head that never really dissipates.
The smell is sweet, malty Belgian beer with some brown sugar and some noticeable extra heat from alcohol. It doesn't seem exactly bourbon-barrel-aged, but there is a definite extra sweetness and bite on top of the usual quad smell.
The flavor is pretty similar. Sweet malt, vanilla, bread. Noticeable alcohol heat even though its 11.8% ABV is really not _that_ high, compared to some BBA stouts.
Mouthfeel is good. Sticky with the right amount of carbonation.
This a darn good bba quad, and I love that Boulevard is now distributing it in 4-packs of 12-ounce bottles instead of only in 750ml bottles like before.

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Photo of TBoneJones
4.45/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Looks deep mahogany. Decent head, nicer lacing.
Smells like bubblegum, a hint of banana/ cherry/ vanilla, amaretto, malts.
The taste follows the nose very well here, and with candied fruits and dark fruits lurking somewhat too. The bourbon is minimal, and the burn is there but not overpowering.
Feels medium-full and fairly rich.
Very nice flavors, overall a terrific fruit-laden barrel-aged quad. So full of flavor. Recommended.

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Photo of Bluegrass49
4.94/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Surprisingly delightful! Wasn't sure going into it the first couple of sips. The ABV being so high can sometimes take away from the things that make a beer enjoyable. But once the taste buds settled down all of the good qualities started to come through. The only problem I had was I had only ONE!

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

Pours a hazy mahogany color with half a finger of an off-white quickly dissipating head.

Aroma is of toffee, some citrus notes, brown sugar, and alcohol.

Taste starts off with the surprising Amount of citrus notes. Perhaps some cherry is hidden within, but it doesn't scream out. Rather light for the first 2/3 of the sip, but then the bourbon, brown sugar, and toffee notes arise. A lot of bourbon soaked dark fruits. Alcohol taste and heat is present.

Overall, this is a unique interpretation of a classic. I love the finish to the beer and the light kiss of bourbon; however, I do not like the amount of citrus notes and the lighter feel. I prefer a little more decedent. I see this pairing well with Moroccan chicken. It gets a 88.5/100.

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Photo of bbtkd
4.03/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Boulevard Bourbon Barrel Quad, 11.8% ABV, 19 IBU. Pours a thin cloudy walnut brown, with 5 fingers of off-white head, and excellent lacing. Nose is bourbon, malt, some sweetness. Taste is booze up front, maltiness, some sweetness, ending in bourbon. Not very bitter, not very sweet. Good mouthfeel. Overall very good. I was going to do a side-by-side with the Central Waters BBQ but given that one was 10% ABV and the other 11.8% ABV I decided to drink them separately. Though this Boulevard BBQ is excellent, I like the CW BBQ a bit better. They are quite different, with the CW coming off sweeter and the Boulevard boozier. I just prefer the CW but can't go wrong with either.

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Photo of thebeers
4.14/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours an orange-and-brown-tinted ruby red with a thin tan head when poured into a wide-mouthed goblet. The head eventually dissipates to a wispy island floating in the middle surrounded by a small crown.

Dates, raisins, plums and a smooth, creamy vanilla-and-toffee bourbon all stand out in the aroma. These continue to the taste, along with some white wine grape, earthy hop bitterness and a kiss of alcohol burn. There's a touch of green apple and some oak in the aftertaste, too. It may not have world class depth, but it's pretty damn close.

It's medium bodied with, perhaps, a tad too strong carbonation. Really glad they're selling these in the smaller format bottles now. Delicious.

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Photo of Karnivool1
4.68/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Kudos to Boulevard for making this a year round brew. Caramel, vanilla, dark fruits (plum?) with a perfect touch of bourbon. An absolute world class beer.

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Photo of OrangeMen
4.03/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

2015 vintage
~1 year from bottling date

Appearance- Pours a deep amber / brown color, bright burnt orange hues. Fairly hazy, murky body. Two finger thick, fizzy and creamy, off white colored head. Not much head lacing, small amount of alcohol legs.

Aroma- Rich sugary malts, candi syrup, caramel, dark fruits, cherries, raisins, plums, even a touch of tartness. Creamy vanilla, toffee, woody spiciness, touch of bourbon. Belgian yeast, clove, fruity esters.

Taste- Candi syrup, bready, toasty, rich maltiness. Woody spiciness followed by creamy vanilla, caramel, bourbon, and toffee. Belgian phenols, dark fruits, tart cherry, raisins, figs, and plums.

Feel- Medium bodied, sweet and creamy beer, touch of dryness from the oak. Moderate and smooth carbonation.

Overall- Rich, sweet, and flavorful beer. Smooth maltiness amplified by the creamy flavors the barrel seems to impart. Not a whole lot of bourbon, just a touch in the background. Belgian yeast and dark fruits add complexity and more layers of flavors.

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Bourbon Barrel Quad Barrel-Aged Ale (BBQ) from Boulevard Brewing Co.
4.22 out of 5 based on 2,353 ratings.
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