Scarface Imperial Stout (Bourbon Barrel Aged)
Speakeasy Ales & Lagers

Scarface Imperial Stout (Bourbon Barrel Aged)Scarface Imperial Stout (Bourbon Barrel Aged)
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American Imperial Stout
Ranked #1,935
Ranked #11,367
3.96 | pDev: 10.61%
Speakeasy Ales & Lagers
California, United States
Scarface Imperial Stout (Bourbon Barrel Aged)Scarface Imperial Stout (Bourbon Barrel Aged)
Reviews: 24 | Ratings: 104 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of sulldaddy
3.76/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Picked up a 22 oz bottle at a shop recently after learning the brewery may be going into receivership. May as well try some beers before they arent available anymore. Im pouring the beer into a snifter at cellar temperature.
The beer pours a pitch black color with a creamy tan head foaming up about 2 cm and fading slowly to a sturdy surface layer of spongey foam and leaving densely packed lattice on the sides of my glass that sticks around for much of the sampling.
The aroma is all malt with some dark chocolate and charred malt, I also get some black licorice and a little bit of booziness. I dont get any hops nor as much bourbon as I had hoped.
The first sip reveals a silky textured beer with mild spacious carbonation, pretty easy drinking on the physical side of the beer.
Flavor is a deep hit of roasted malt and some dry oak character. I also get the charred malt and a bit of dark chocolate and again the black licorice comes on strong. I also get a heavy dose of warming booze after each sip. So this big beer does reveal itself and isnt a sneaky boozer. The beer is a big imp stout and fairly easy to drink, but there isnt a lot of bourbon as anticipated from the bottle. A decent enough beer, but not amazing.

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Photo of ccg
3.72/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This is a good-looking stout. It seem slightly fizzy at first, but the legs are thick and stick to the glass, and once it settles, it looks creamy and dense, and it leaves a thin layer of khaki foam.

There is some chocolatey roasted malt on the nose and a hint of sourness in the background, but overall the smell is actually rather weak.

The flavor also has a bit of chocolatey roast and a hint of sour. I can't say that I'm getting any sense of barrel-aging in this particular bottle.

Has a sort feel with the alcohol mostly hidden except for a lingering warmth at the end.

I would approach this beer as a regular stout rather than a bourbon-barrel-aged stout. As a stout, it works reasonably well. I had this bottle in the cellar for several months, and I'm picking up a bit of a sour note in it, so that might be a sign that it's better to drink this one fresh.

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Photo of Smakawhat
3.47/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Poured from the bottle into a snifter glass. Vintage not known.

Dark walnut brown body color, with quite a light colored head. Head is about a good solid finger and staying power, but is very light tan in color. Good amounts of weeping spotted lacing as well.

Fruity nose. Hints of berried quality and light sensing whiskey notes. Fruited almost spicy sensing rye qualities, and an interesting ester. Light bodied roast qualities and not too particularly large. Solid.

Palate is just weak and watery. Fruity and wet washing palate, with a light roast character. Slight char and a hint of wood, but with not much density or richness. Besides being wet there's quite a bit of fizzy body. Much of the fruity tones just aren't coming out either, and the beer really lacks the character of barrel aging, minus the boozy quality.

In the big bourbon barrel aged stout realm, while drinkable and nothing faulty, this just doesn't stand out.

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Photo of jws7968
3.86/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours pitch black and had my hopes up for a minute. The smell was was some faint bourbon, vanilla some chocolate. The taste is similar with not much bourbon barrel which was a disappointment. The feel was a little thin for my liking, Overall, glad I made the purchase, but would not repeat

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.08/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

these guys just dont get enough credit, its a shame, i think they do nice work across a range of styles, and this definitely stands as one of their best beers ive had. its a pretty classic example of the style. matte black in color, just under an inch of soapy thick latte colored head. the nose and taste of this are just excellent. packed with dry roasted barley, less bitter than many, but not sweet either, and as flavorful as can be, fresher almost in some ways, espresso and tobacco come to mind, a little dark raw chocolate in there too. not quite as syrupy as a lot of these in terms of texture which i think is a big help. the booze is well hidden in the moderate body. awesome bourbon flavor here, pretty robust, but not too much that it takes over the flavor of the base beer, fortunately, because the base beer is delicious. less vanilla than some, more whiskey itself, wet oak, and roast. pleasant round finish to it, very satisfying brew with all of the essential elements. im not sure why their beer doesnt get more love, but if you are among the doubters, get yourself a glass of this one and you will be converted, i am quite confident in that. i like when these are carbonated too, which this one definitely is. active and peppy, very well done.

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Photo of Ozzylizard
4.6/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber born 11/09/15 at 42 degrees into a hand washed and dried JK snifter, allowed to warm to 50 degrees
Aroma of bourbon, light and enticing, not nose-burning like many, lasts the entire glass
Head average (Three cm, aggressive pour), light brown, creamy with rocks, diminishing to an irregular two to seven ring and thin layer
Lacing excellent – complete ring of mostly tiny bubbles with a half dozen or so larger bubbles
Body – dark brown/black, opaque
Flavor – very smooth and well-blended, light bourbon, some oak, some roasted malt; no hops, no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate – full, creamy, soft carbonation
Overall, an excellent example of this style, as smooth as the best versions of bourbon.

Appearance 4.5, Aroma 4.5, Flavor 4.75, Palate 4.5, Overall 4.5

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Photo of soco89ziegler
3.69/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

It's worth buying once to try it out. Picked a few bottles up at Total Wine for 10.99. I am a big barrel aged stout fan, and this is an average offering in my opinion. I actually enjoyed the mouth feel, there is a lot of cocoa in the taste, my biggest complaint is the barrel and the bourbon or lack there of.

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Photo of Zorro
3.48/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Black colored beer with a full sized brown colored head.

Smells of burned sugar and whiskey. Scents of Licorice. Scent of Chocolate cake and vanilla. Scents of fruit and caramel after it warms up.

Starts out sweet with the taste of scorched sugar and vanilla. Taste stays about the same.

Mouthfeel is average for the style.

Overall, OK Bourbon Barrel Beer, but not among the top for the style.

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Photo of DrSpaceman
4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours pure black, thick tan two finger head with good retention. Smoked malt, vanilla, bourbon aroma. Taste is dark molasses, chocolate, vanilla, oak, and bourbon. Alcohol heat disappears quickly, leaving vanilla and bourbon aftertaste. Body is thick and chewy, easily standing up to the 9.5% ABV. An amazing example of oak aged imperial stout done right.

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Photo of Mightykingmalard
3.97/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: pitch black. Looks exactly like a bba imperial stout should.

S: strong cocoa and bourbon. Actually smells really really good.

T: a lot of cocoa. Not a ton of barrel nor a lot of bourbon.

M: kinda just dies I'm your mouth. Actually the booze is pretty prominent at the finish.

O: speakeasy tries for a lot but their barrel program isn't there yet...

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Photo of BWood
3.53/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Good beer. Had this after a bomber of BBA Narwhal, so didn't really live to that. Not saying I wouldn't have it again but there are others I would buy before it.

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Photo of brentk56
4.02/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours out fudge brown with a nice tan head that leaves some stringy lacing behind

Smell: Chocolate and coffee notes with a hint of Bourbon barrel

Taste: Chocolate and roast, up front, with a touch of coffee developing; the barrel adds character to the finish but does not dominate

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Not the huge beer that one would expect given the style and the ABV, this is still an enjoyable beer that is very well balanced

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Photo of Budinetz
3.13/5  rDev -21%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Poured from the wax covered bomber into an oversized snifter.

Pours a thick, charcoal black with a dark caramel colored head. Some visible lazing around the glass and a thin film that sticks to the edges after each sip. Smells of roasted malt, slight vanilla and bourbon. A hint of diacetyl is detected but just ever so slightly.

Tastes of rich dark chocolate, vanilla bean, and whiskey. The bourbon flavor lingers on the tongue for a few minutes after swallowing. The 9.5 % ABV is definitely detectable due to the wavy bourbon presence. Seems as if the flavors are not very well balanced and judging by the fact that this is the first release, I'm sure it will be tweaked down the road.

Mouthfeel is mediocre. Overall pretty average bourbon barrel aged stout. I would try it again next year to see if there were improvements but at this point the quality just isn't quite there yet.

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Photo of leantom
4.16/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Got this in a trade and would therefore like to give a shout-out to youradhere. Here goes:

A: Pours a beautiful one inch head that leaves plenty of lacing. This beer is pitch-blank, too - and I mean PITCH black. Overall it's very lovely.

S: Very good. Chocolate and coffee notes backed up by oaken vanilla. While the oak isn't as robust as in other bourbon-barrel-aged beers, it still serves as a nice complement to the roasted malt, somewhat alleviating the latter's bitterness.

T: A very solid beer. Chocolate, roasted malt gives way to a large bourbon backbone. They did a very good job with the beer. The roasted, burnt malt lingers on the tongue long after consumption.

F: Beautiful. Thick beer that glides down the tongue.

O: A really well-made stout. Would have again.

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Photo of humulusphile
2.74/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

2012 vintage on tap at Steep Brews

Far too much oak, burying the stout flavor. Some malty dark bourbon notes are faint, riding very far at the back of the bus, just barely perceptible on the finish. Regular Scarface is far better, I hope for Speakeasy that this was an anomaly, because I've been a fan of most of their beers I've tried thus far.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.54/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

650 mL bottle into a snifter.

Appearance - Black with some transparency. Small khaki head and a thin collar.

Smell - Whiskey, not a very sweet or rich whiskey aroma though. Oak. A little fruity. Some chocolate.

Taste - More of a bourbon flavor. Still not to rich. Caramel and vanilla. Chocolate and coffee roasted malts.

Mouthfeel - Medium heavy. A little sweet.

Overall - Definitely an improvement on the base. Cuts the hoppiness nicely.

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Photo of kaseydad
4.19/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Waited a few months to partake and away we go…..btw….love the name and bottle image. They didn’t cover the eyes with the wax…+1 for that.

Pours a dark brown colored ale with a nice beige colored head. Good lacing. Solid look.

Getting a big dose of charred whiskey but that is to be expected. Apple, roasted malt, dark and creamy chocolate

The taste has more whiskey elements shining through with a big burnt, roasted malt, black coffee and baker’s chocolate finish. Lingering light bitter aftertaste. Blended well imo. Light hops. Slight numbing of the gums. Dat is good.

Silky, oily mouthfeel.

Overall I think this worked very well. I think it’s ready to drink now before it loses the whiskey element, which stands out here. The price point was thinks $11.99 for a bomber…and I will be seeking this out again…..if I can find it.

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Photo of TheSixthRing
3.61/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours deep, dark and inky, with a dark tan finger width head and fair dissipation. What's left behind is a broken layer of suds across the surface, and a fair ring around the edge. Lacing is thin and streaky, with fair stick.

Smell - Holy hot nose, Batman! This smells almost exclusively like ethanol, with buried notes of chocolate, oak and roasted malt to save this from being a complete olfactory disaster.

Taste - Thankfully not nearly as hot in the flavor as the nose would suggest. First notes to hit the tongue are strong milk chocolate and a touch of anise. Bourbon and the accompanying heat that comes with it appear shortly after. Mild notes of roast pop in near the finish then fade, leaving an oaky, bourbony and milk chocolate finish.

Mouthfeel - On the lighter side of full-bodied, with moderate carbonation. Goes down smoother than expected, though there's a bit of bite from the alcohol. Dry finish.

Overall - A solid, though unspectacular barrel-aged impy. One of those rare beers where the smell is atrocious, but the brew tastes good. For the price, I'd probably skip on trying this again, but as it was a birthday gift to begin with I can't complain too much. :)

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Photo of BKBassist
3.8/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a tulip.

A - Nice fairly dark brown head with big fluffy bubbles. Fast dissipation. Body is a rich dark brown. Looks very much like a RIS.

S - Lots of oak with a hint of caramel sweetness.

T - Very bourbon forward, a bit hot. A hint of milk stout like sweetness. Some dark meaty candied date notes.

M - A tad watery. Not the velvet smoothness that I look for in a RIS, but not unpleasant.

O - A fine drinkable BA RIS that loses some points for being a bit too hot and not quite there in the mouthfeel.

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Photo of BlurryVisi0n
4.27/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Served in a 17 oz. snifter.

Appearance: Pours pitch black with bubbles all over the body and with a vigorous pour the somewhat dark tan head rose to a finger's length.

Smell: Quite an aroma if you ask me, rich of bourbon light scotch complimented with vanilla-chocolate. It is addicting just inhaling this brew.

Taste: A sweet bitterness that is mixed with espresso and molasses. You feel a scotch medley in the end which is quite appetizing.

Mouth: medium at best, but to say it is smooth is being sarcastic or just not knowing what you are talking about. It is easy an acquired taste and the feel that is gentle for what this brew is.

Overall: Is this an improvement from the orginal Scarface Imperial, I would say yes. In my honest opinion rarely the "barrell aged" exceeds the original but Speakeasy out did themselves. This brew is a steal for the price and honestly I am happy I bought two bottles when I saw it. Grab a snifter or best available beer glass and enjoy, Salud!

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Photo of Greywulfken
4.43/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: in a large snifter, oily ink black beer with a slim but rich dark milky head; lace mote speckles

S: dark, sweet, chocolate and roasted malt aromas infused with that bright whiskey vapor

T: middle ground between the chocolate and espresso character, the bourbon pulling out woodsy flavors, like oak

M: silky, not too dense, slightly sticky, slightly coating, very mellow

O: I really enjoyed the "basic" Scarface, and this is a more elegant version of that drink. The bourbon barrel-aging may not appeal to all, but in my estimation, it works well with Imperial stouts more often than not. In this beer, a smooth and rugged beer is rounded off with lighter notes and flavors, but also a deeper, more luxurious character.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.52/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle I brought to share during the Churchill's weekend festivities.

Pours an opaque black with a foamy dark khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Foamy streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, and a green apple aroma. Taste is much the same with cocoa and green apple flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with a decent barrel aged presence but I am not sure where the green apple aromas and flavors are coming from.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.16/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark black with a hint of brown and a finger of frothy khaki-chocolate colored head. Fades normal.

S - Roasted chocolate malts, oak, vanilla, Bourbon, coffee, black licorice, molasses, dark fruits, earthy hops, and some booze.

T - Roasted chocolate malts, oak, vanilla, Bourbon, roasted coffee, black licorice, molasses, dark fruits, earthy hops, bit of smoke, and some booze.

M - Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Smooth with a warming and sweet finish.

D - Nice barrel aged imperial stout. Good overall balance.

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Photo of augustgarage
4.2/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

On-tap at Jupiter during Sourfest - served in a small snifter - brief review from notes:

Opaque seal brown liquid with a thin head which dissipates before the color can be named. Thin pasty lacing.

Rich aroma of vanilla and molasses along with roast barley, bittersweet chocolate, leather, tobacco, etc.

The flavor profile closely follows the nose, though more potent still with a pleasing medium-dry finish and a long roasty yet mellow finish. Alcohol is well integrated and there are a few brighter esters suggesting plum or other fruit for balance.

Velvety, thick, but not over-done mouth-feel with adequate carbonation.

A very respectable stout from Speakeasy - surprisingly so, perhaps the first of their beer to warrant some real enthusiasm.

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Scarface Imperial Stout (Bourbon Barrel Aged) from Speakeasy Ales & Lagers
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 104 ratings