Imperial Stout Aged In Bourbon Barrels
Guinness Open Gate Brewery & Barrel House

Imperial Stout Aged In Bourbon BarrelsImperial Stout Aged In Bourbon Barrels
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From:
Guinness Open Gate Brewery & Barrel House
 
Maryland, United States
Style:
American Imperial Stout
Ranked #1,730
ABV:
10.3%
Score:
89
Ranked #12,415
Avg:
3.98 | pDev: 7.54%
Reviews:
42
Ratings:
47
Status:
Active
Rated:
Nov 19, 2022
Added:
Oct 24, 2020
Wants:
  2
Gots:
  4
SCORE
89
Very Good
Imperial Stout Aged In Bourbon BarrelsImperial Stout Aged In Bourbon Barrels
Notes: At Guinness, we're known for our stouts. When we brew them in Baltimore, we have a long heritage and history from which to draw. For this stout, we took it even further by aging it in bourbon barrels. The resulting beer is a bold, flavorful, roasty stout - exactly what you'd expect from Guinness. From the barrels, we extracted huge aromas of bourbon, vanilla, and dark fruit like raisins and figs. A beer best enjoyed by the fire, surrounded by the warmth and cheer of great food and great friends.
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Photo of GrumpyGas
Reviewed by GrumpyGas from Illinois

4.49/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
I can't believe I've had this for two years without having reviewed it yet. Good thing I looked before gulping it down.
Last bottle from the four pack and it has in the fridge since I found it under the stairs last month.

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass shows a dark brown body, cola colored at the edges as light filters through, and almost holds a 1/8" cap of cream colored foam while leaving the glass dripping with tiny spots of lacing with agitation.

Bourbon notes dominate the aroma joined by that fresh air/ roast malt aroma I love.

The flavor remains a gloriously, yet restrained, bourbon soaked roasted malt elixir that welcomes, if not demands, another sip.

Medium mouthfeel is expected as I believe they used the Antwerpen stout for this base and that one is a bit thinner than the standard stout, and certainly less creamy than the nitro, but it is also expected due to the barrel aged presentation.

Overall, I expected great things from Guinness, and they delivered.
Nov 19, 2022
 
Rated: 3.69 by edthehead from New York

Jul 08, 2022
 
Rated: 3.67 by robotic_being from Florida

Jun 04, 2022
 
Rated: 3.86 by TP2MSU from Michigan

May 08, 2022
Photo of AllenGH
Rated by AllenGH

4.04/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
Nice bourbon smell and initial taste, then a bit of vanilla and coffee play on the taste buds. Smooth, if a little thin, finish. Bourbon lingers…
Feb 02, 2022
Photo of Suds
Reviewed by Suds from Missouri

3.98/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
From a brown bottle, this brew is a black color with a tan head. It has a sweet, boozy, matly aroma. The taste isn't as sweet as the aroma projects, but it does have a bourbon quality, a nice balance, and quite a bit of roasted flavor. The body is a bit thinner than I would prefer for a beer like this, but it is still well made and enjoyable.
Dec 20, 2021
 
Rated: 4.04 by fountainofyouth from District of Columbia

Dec 01, 2021
Photo of ScruffySouthpaw
Reviewed by ScruffySouthpaw from New York

3.81/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
Served in a goblet from the bottle.

Appearance: Thin brown to black body coming off a dark brown tint color.

Smell: Liquor aroma with molasses which dissipates quickly from the nose.

Taste: Bourbon feel with hint of American coffee. Lightly boozy.

Thin body with a soft carbonation.

Overall: Nice grab, could have been worse with minor tweaking this could be a gem. Lacks body and aroma...the taste is on point. Always in a glass!
Nov 25, 2021
Photo of Bitterbill
Reviewed by Bitterbill from Wyoming

3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
Bottle left over from last year?

Pours black with a multi finger head of tan foam.

Strong aromas of Bourbon and vanilla with some bitter roasted malt.

The taste is Bourbon, roasted malt, vanilla, chocolate, hint of lactose. Pretty balanced.

Almost full bodied, though it thins out in the finish, smooth even with the alcohol being noticeable.

Nice variant.
Oct 27, 2021
 
Rated: 4.07 by Buck_Jones from Michigan

Oct 23, 2021
 
Rated: 3.81 by BAsbill from California

Oct 03, 2021
 
Rated: 4.1 by CraftFan5 from New Jersey

Sep 10, 2021
 
Rated: 3.5 by archero from Texas

Apr 28, 2021
Photo of HardTarget
Reviewed by HardTarget from Texas

4.26/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
Appearance: Black, holds a thin collar of dark tan head.

Aroma: Light, not much here. Hints of dark malt, touch of soured mash, pretty classic Guinness like stuff.

Taste: Sweet malt, mild building bourbon cask notes with the hint of sour that goes with a Guinness. No harsh wood or tannin, no char, just the fruity floral bourbon, with some oak depth.

Mouthfeel: Medium heavy body, flat, silky, creamy texture.

Overall: Real tasty. I like Guinness, but was worried this was "gratuitous oaking". It's not. They got the balance right where the barrel isn't gimmicky, it's adding good flavors. I'm enjoying this more than the normal Foreign Exports, may need to pick up another 4 pack.
Apr 22, 2021
Photo of woemad
Reviewed by woemad from Washington

2.99/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3
11.2oz bottle courtesy of my brother, who gave it to me for Xmas, 2020. No freshness date on the bottle as far as I can see.

Poured into a glass, this was a super dark brown, virtually black. Good-sized tah head that left a decent amount of lace.

Bourbon and a kind of milky scent in the nose. Kinda makes me think of nougat that is past it's prime. Not pleasant.

Taste is a little better than the nose, but isn't terribly distinctive. Mostly, the flavor seems to be coming from the bourbon barrels the beer aged in. And, as it warms there's still that aged milk thing hanging overhead from the nose, seemingly getting stronger.

Decent mouthfeel for the style.

Almost a great experience, totally spoiled by the expired milk thing. It's a 10.3% BBA stout, it ought to age well, but it didn't.
Apr 19, 2021
 
Rated: 4.45 by beerrat from Virginia

Mar 14, 2021
Photo of MacMalt
Reviewed by MacMalt from New Jersey

4.25/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
I let this sit at room temperature for about 2 hours before pouring into a pint glass. It pours a dark cola color with a full finger of frothy, light khaki head and thick, creamy lacing. The nose is fragrant and features lots of roasted malt, chocolate, toffee, coconut, and oak. This is rich and good! The chocolate and toffee are front and center with lesser notes of vanilla and coconut. The bourbon emerges at mid-palate; it's noticeable but delicate. It has a mouth feel appropriate for an Imperial Stout: thick and creamy with moderate carbonation, and you can feel the 10.3% ABV. The 12 oz. bottle format is appropriate. I rarely give a beer the same rating across the board but I think it's appropriate. This is a solid 4.25 offering. I'm not sure why the overall rating is sub 4; this is really enjoyable.
Mar 07, 2021
 
Rated: 4.02 by TonyStarks2231 from New York

Mar 07, 2021
Photo of jlindros
Reviewed by jlindros from Massachusetts

4.14/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Pours a small fizzy off white head with med retention, a bit of lacing and legs, jet black color

Nose brings some barrel, buttery and vanilla oak, sweet bourbon, into nice stout malt, roasted malts, dark chocolate, baking spices, a bit of woody earthy oak, vanilla ice cream and little char

Taste brings fudgey dark chocolate, and moist chocolate cake, baking spice and vanilla, a bit of roast and black malt, bakers chocolate into vanilla and toasted oak barrel, light sweet bourbon, a touch of smooth alcohol, little bitter spicy hop, drier mild sticky sweet finish, flash of alcohol and lots more chocolate cake lingering

Mouth is fuller bod, rich a bit creamy, higher end for carb, light warming alcohol

Overall this was a nice pleasant surprise, well done imperial stout and decent barrel notes
Feb 28, 2021
 
Rated: 4.5 by robebo44 from Virginia

Feb 25, 2021
 
Rated: 3.63 by JohnofUpton from Massachusetts

Feb 20, 2021
 
Rated: 3.9 by jbertsch from Massachusetts

Feb 14, 2021
 
Rated: 4 by SushiSakeBeer from Oregon

Feb 10, 2021
 
Rated: 4.5 by 10_bathrooms from Texas

Feb 05, 2021
Photo of Thankin_Hank
Reviewed by Thankin_Hank from Texas

4.54/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5
The Golden Label 12 ounce bottle is pretty. The beer pours that rich dark color i love so much. Pretty much get molasses on the sniffer. It tastes like a Guinness on steroids(Bourbon Barrels) and that is really good. The dark chocolate bitterness on the tongue is very nice. A little creamy smooth in the mouthfeel. Overall I'm impressed. I think I like it. More please.
Feb 02, 2021
Photo of hudsonvalleyslim
Reviewed by hudsonvalleyslim from Massachusetts

4.42/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5
'Aged in Bourbon Barrels' reads the label. First I've seen of this in Massachusetts. VERY pricey ($18/4 -11.2oz at Total Wine). Weighs in at 10.3abv, strong enough to defend itself! It is really excellent, rich and bursting with dark fruit flavors.
Feb 01, 2021
Photo of ryan1788a5
Reviewed by ryan1788a5 from Massachusetts

3.88/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
12oz bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Inky black with a finger and a half of beige head that retains very well. Thick collar of lacing.

S: Barrel is front and center. Bourbon, oaky vanilla, light char and smoke, toasted coconut shavings, caramel. Fudge, tootsie rolls, and dark chocolate truffles underneath, coming from a hefty malt base. Dark fruit in the way of chocolate cover black cherries and raisins.

T: Dark chocolate, tootsie rolls, soot, heavy blanket of roast. French roast coffee. Slight acidic twang in the signature Guinness sense, with that stewed fruit flavor. Cherries and raisins, and stewed prunes. Maybe even a flash of Concord grape. The barrel brings a mild, sweet bourbon flavor, light pepper, and oaky vanilla. Bourbon, char, and dark chocolate on the finish.

M: Full bodied and thick, but not too weighty. Silky and airy texture. Soft but ample carbonation. Mild alcohol warmth and oak tannin.

O: Sort of a no-frills barrel aged Imperial stout. Medium dry, with more of a roasty rather than burnt malt character, as befits the style. They didn’t just brew a huge Irish Stout and barrel age it, which is good. The fermentation is all Guinness though. It’s tasty and solid, if not a little forgettable in a somewhat crowded category.
Jan 23, 2021
Photo of damndirtyape
Reviewed by damndirtyape from Ohio

4.03/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
11.2oz bottle served in a snifter. Date stamp: L0252T2001 1745

Appearance: Vigorous pour gave a black colored beer that with a cell phone light behind it, does let some light through with a definite ruby red color. Initial 1/4" tan head that died back slowly with some strands of lacing that would slowly slide back down the glass.

Smell: Bourbon and vanilla.

Taste: Bourbon, vanilla, burnt sugar, and the underlying stout, which as aspects of a dry Irish stout, but it's not the normal Guinness either. The finish is boozy with a bit of metallic mixed in.

Mouthfeel: Warming from the alcohol, good thickness, prickly carbonation, dry finish.

Overall / Drinkability: If you ever have Guinness on nitro-tap, and then have it with carbonation, it's a bit like drinking 2 different beers, and not just in the mouthfeel - they taste difference because of the acidity with the carbonation, and this beer has that character of Guinness with carbonation and the acidic / metallic (metallic to me anyway) finish. Otherwise it's a good sipping and savoring beer to enjoy the Bourbon notes with are stronger than the stout, but, not so strong that the stout is lost. Glad I picked this one up - well done.
Jan 15, 2021
 
Rated: 3.83 by Abe_Froman from Massachusetts

Jan 09, 2021
 
Rated: 3.96 by mattmarka1 from Minnesota

Jan 08, 2021
Photo of imnodoctorbut
Reviewed by imnodoctorbut from Texas

4.18/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
pours deep mahogany with a tan bubbly foamed head that has moderate retention and leaves spotted lacing as it settles down to a thin halo

aroma is bourbon, vanilla, and dark fruit (fig) along with roasted caramel malt.

taste follows suit, but there is an interesting combo resulting in a holiday bread tasting backbone which balanced all the other layers of flavor to great effect.

feel is moderate carbonation, and medium/full body. booze heat evident but nowhere near harsh. otherwise smooth with a dry finish

overall:
splendid. feels weird to say out loud, but the effect is somewhere between winter warmer and bourbon forward stout. there's a holiday bread taste that sticks and is such a well rounded example for the style. it's not complex, but it's not a simple stout either (bourbon/chocolate/milk etc). lucky to stumble upon it here locally.
Jan 07, 2021
 
Rated: 4.5 by powdersoldier from Washington

Jan 03, 2021
 
Rated: 4.5 by 1971bernat from Virginia

Jan 03, 2021
Photo of tigg924
Reviewed by tigg924 from Massachusetts

4.34/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
Pours opaque, dark black in color with 1/2 inch head. Taste is barrel, sugar, bourbon, and roasted malt. Heavy body, sweet, roasty, low carbonation. Enjoyed this a lot more than I thought I would. Loads of bourbon character without being too over the top boozy. I look forward to these seasonal Guinness releases and this one lives up to my high expectations.
Dec 31, 2020
 
Rated: 3.86 by Sound_Explorer from Washington

Dec 31, 2020
Photo of buschbeer
Reviewed by buschbeer from Ohio

4.01/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4
11.2 FL. OZ. bottle
Served in a Guinness nonic pint glass

This beer pours very dark brown. Feint ruby highlights are only visible when held to a light. It is topped with an inch of tan head that leaves decent lacing.

The smell is light bourbon, vanilla, caramel, and dark red fruit.

The taste is interesting. It definitely has a dry oak flavor. I get plum and black cherry. Chocolate, roasted malt, and coffee are present. Dry finish.

It is kind of light bodied for a stout of this strength. The mouthfeel is dry.

I am impressed with the complexity. The thinness and dry finish aren't necessarily my favorite aspects of this beer. The price tag seemed a bit steep for a mega brewery, but I managed to find a single. I am glad I tried it. I doubt I purchase another unless it is on draft. I would definitely take a free one though!
Dec 30, 2020
 
Rated: 4.16 by Boone757 from Virginia

Dec 24, 2020
Photo of Scotchboy
Reviewed by Scotchboy from Idaho

4.01/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25
11.2oz bottle poured into a snifter.

A: Pours out like cola with light showing through the dark caramel liquid, leading to a very dark brown/black body in the glass, with a small khaki head and minimal lace.

S: Sweet notes of caramel and toffee, bready malt and vanilla/bourbon. Nice.

T: Doesn't have that traditional roast character that I look for in a big barreled stout but the sweetness here is nice; there is plenty of that caramelly bready malt and a flash of toffee/vanilla that makes me think bourbon barrel, maybe a touch of oak as well.

MF: Thinner here than I would prefer for a 10% stout but certainly serviceable.

O: A nice offering, and somewhat unique in that it isn't heavy-handed with roasted malt/bitterness/coffee flavors, and instead there is a large caramel/toffee/milk chocolate/vanilla presence that pushes this beer a little sweeter.
Dec 24, 2020
 
Rated: 4.45 by Hoptometrist from Ohio

Dec 23, 2020
 
Rated: 4 by Mortarforker from Texas

Dec 23, 2020
Imperial Stout Aged In Bourbon Barrels from Guinness Open Gate Brewery & Barrel House
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 89 ratings