Ibex Series: Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout
The Schlafly Tap Room

Ibex Series: Barrel-Aged Imperial StoutIbex Series: Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout
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Stout - Russian Imperial
Ranked #216
Ranked #3,455
4.12 | pDev: 10.44%
The Schlafly Tap Room
Missouri, United States
Ibex Series: Barrel-Aged Imperial StoutIbex Series: Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout
Notes: Formerly Schlafly Bourbon Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout

Our Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Stout is brewed with a big malt flavor, plenty of hop bitterness for balance and roasted barley that imparts notes of dark chocolate. As a finishing touch, the beer is transferred to freshly-emptied Kentucky bourbon barrels and aged before being carbonated and bottled. The barrel aging gives the beer a spicy, vanilla character and a pleasant, warming finish.

In the 18th Century, Imperial Stout was first brewed in London for export to the court of Catherine II of Russia. The beer had to be robust enough to maintain during transport.

This beer will continue to age well in a cool dark place for several years, but it is ready to enjoy now.

40 IBU
Reviews: 428 | Ratings: 1,026 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Niel47
Niel47 from Canada (ON)

4.88/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is my favourite beer in all the world.

I wast introduced to it by a friend who lives in St. Louis when I went there to visit him somewhere around 2004. He told me there was this beer in town I just had to try.

The colour is black, the smell rich, the flavour vivacious, and the aftertaste one that lasts the whole month. I rarely ever make it to St. Louis anymore, but whenever I even drive through, you can be sure I make it my top priority to visit Schlafly Tap Room for a pint of this true black gold. I may or may not visit my friend - who is one of my best in the world - but I don't skip Schlafly! Lol! (I exaggerate, but not by much.)

The only downside is that their bottles just aren't as good as it is on tap. You can only take so many bottles with you when you leave, and they never fully capture it anyway. Sigh. Too bad I live 1,632 km away. Maybe I should just move there.

May 24, 2020
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jkblr from Indiana

4.21/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

330mL bottled 01:2019 (4 months ago) poured into a Spiegelau stout glass at fridge temp 10.2% ABV. The beer pours dense very dark brown with barely any light penetration around the edges. The head is mocha colored and recedes to a single layer of fine bubbles and a fluffy ring. Minimal lacing. The aroma is chocolate fudge, bourbon and oak. The taste is semisweet chocolate with loads of bourbon, oak and vanilla. The bitterness is mild, but it's not cloying in any way. The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with medium minus carbonation and a semi dry finish. There is some alcohol heat, but it's well integrated and not distracting. Overall, excellent. This is my first barrel aged beer from Schlafly and I'm surprised how good it is. The lack of hype and relatively low price tempered my expectations.

May 29, 2019
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SHODriver from North Carolina

4/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2015 Vintage

A: Poured into a snifter to a black beer topped by a dense and rocky finger and a half of light tan head which fades slowly to a collar around the edge of the glass with minimal lacing
S: Smells of intense chocolate, coffee, roasted malts, vanilla, caramel and oak.
T: Taste is chocolate with a slight hint of anise, there's some slight oxidation, alcohol, bitter coffee and roasted malts, vanilla, hints of caramel, and drying oak. On the swallow this one is a little more alcohol, chocolate, roasted malts, slight charred wood and burnt sugar with some lingering coffee.
M: This beer has a body which is slightly creamy while being on the heavier side of medium. Carbonation is just a bit under being prickly while the beer has a drying finish.
O: Overall I recall this beer more fondly the first time I drank it. This one is pretty solid but it misses a little on execution. It has good flavors but it also didn't really stand up well to time. Alcohol is surprisingly apparent as well. It's worth a try but if you don't try it I don't think you'll be missing out on anything.

Feb 11, 2019
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Luscious_Malfoy from Illinois

4.34/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

light brown pour that settles dark brown with a thin layer of mocha head. has some bourbon sting to it. oak, chocolate and a little hint of smoke in the nose as well. taste is chocolate and bourbon but not overly so on either. feel is a bit thin for the style. not terrible but could use a little more body. overall, it’s a pretty tasty stout. certainly not top tier but definitely not in the bottom either.

Jul 15, 2018
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HopsAreDaMan from Missouri

4.46/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

David and I enjoyed a vertical of these the winter of 2018: a fresh and two aged ones, all two years apart: 2017, 2015, 2013. We basically agree that we liked the fresh and the 2 year old the best. The 4 year old had a bit more complexity, but it lost something that made the others so enjoyable--perhaps the bourbon character. This is still one of the best BBA imperial stouts I have ever had.

May 23, 2018
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Tsar_Riga from Indiana

4.03/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A - Dark body, almost entirely opaque but with just a hint of transparency around the edges with reddish highlights. Head is cola tan and minimal, and almost no lacing.

S - Strong hit of alcohol and vanilla from the bourbon, along with an underlying roasted malt note and a whiff of wood.

T - Follows the nose, with strong vanilla and a definite barrel aspect, boozy chocolate, and a mildly bitter bite in the close.

M - Brisk enough carbonation, moderate feel, and a bit of warmth from alcohol. Quite drinkable, but does definite coat so this is better with smaller swallows.

O - A solid entry in this sphere, with fewer sharp edges and no off flavors. I really enjoyed this one, but it was not a revelation for the crowded BBA stout sphere.

May 06, 2018
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avalon07 from South Carolina

4.49/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

L: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a dark brown / black color and a thick, opaque consistency. There was a quarter inch of foamy, tan-colored head that didn't last that long. OK lacing.

S: A very enticing aroma of dark chocolate, bourbon, oak, roasted malt, caramel, vanilla, and coffee.

T: Tasted of a tinge of vanilla, a bit of coffee (not as much as expected), lots of dark chocolate, some light caramel notes, a good shot of bourbon (with the accompanying oak barrel), and light hops in the finish. A big, dessert-like flavor that goes down easy. It's sweet, complex, a little aggressive, and incredibly likable. Quite tasty.

F: A well-carbonated beer with a silky smooth finish. Full-bodied.

O: This is an extremely well made stout. Very easy to drink. Definitely worth a look.

Apr 07, 2018
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Ri0 from Wisconsin

4.33/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured 330ml bottle into snifter. A dark coffee brown with a 1 finger thin tan head that fades into thin ring and leaves thin webbed lacing on my glass. Aroma is sweet milk, caramel fudge brownie with vanilla and bourbon. The taste is dessert like, with caramel fudge brownies covered in milk chocolate. Mocha late with some, vanilla and bourbon notes. I male it sound sweet, but it is not cloying. Medium feel with soft carbonation, smooth and not much heat from the 10.2% ABV

Jul 17, 2017
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GuyFawkes from Illinois

4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottled 1/12/17; drank 6/14/17 @ the Yarchives. Brown/black appearance. A rough pour yielded a big, noisy khaki head; strong lace. Oak, cream & mild dark chocolate notes in the nose. Medium thick mouthfeel. Cream, dark chocolate & mild raspberry flavors up front; oak bite on the finish. The oak is a bit strong for my tastes right now, but overall this was flavorful & enjoyable; I might grab another for the cellar.

Jun 15, 2017
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StoutElk_92 from Massachusetts

4.67/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

11.2 oz. bottled on 12/8/2016

Pours dark maroon black with a creamy light tan foam head. Smells like rich bourbon, caramel, vanilla, spice, nutty oak, dark chocolate, raisin, dark fruits, dried fruits, coffee, roasty toasted malts, with floral earthy herbal grassy pine. Tastes like rich bourbon, caramel, fresh vanilla, some spice, nutty oak, rich dark chocolate, raisins, dark fruit, dried fruit, coffee, roasty toasted malts, with floral earthy herbal grassy pine. Feels medium-light bodied, creamy with moderate carbonation. Overall a real nice bourbon barrel-aged imperial stout.

Jun 12, 2017
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CHickman from New York

4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Bottled on 12/22/2016, it pours basically pitch black color with a 1+ finger tan colored foamy head that was full of tiny bubbles that faded slowly and left very nice foamy lacing and a spotty layer on top.

Smells of dark chocolate, roasted malt, peat moss, charred wood, vanilla, faint bourbon, oaky/barrel notes, brown sugar and sweet malty accents. The bourbon, vanilla and chocolate dominate and then some fruit notes pop up like raisins and red wine. No real sign of the booze, making it nice to inhale.

Flavor builds upon the nose with the same line up and some additions which taste like dark chocolate, molasses, roasted malt, coffee grinds, peat moss, charred wood, vanilla, bourbon, dark fruit, oaky/barrel notes, brown sugar, caramel and sweet malty/grainy notes. Almost seems like a piney hop bite that adds a dash of peppery spices and cuts down on the sweetness, making this seem balanced even though I know it's all malt, all the time. The bourbon is always present in a subtle way, adding nice complexities. Best tasting beer I've had by Schlafly, by a mile.

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, with mild carbonation, a medium to heavy body that has enough texture to resemble a meal in a bottle but it doesn't come off as thick or dense. Nice level of sweetness which covers the 10.2% ABV very well, but still allows the bourbon and vanilla flavors to add a lot of depth. A really tasty stout with 6 months of age, I'll try to get my hands on more of this as it was very enjoyable overall.

Jun 03, 2017
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Ozzylizard from Pennsylvania

4.4/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Received from @Harrison8 in NBS BIF #5.
Bottled 12:5:2016, 11.2 oz bottle (Welcome to Europe!). Stored at 42 degrees. Served at 59 degrees in a hand washed and dried Jester King snifter.
Aroma – dark chocolate, lasts and remains strong.
Head – small (Maximum two cm, aggressive pour), tan, dense and creamy, average retention time, diminishing to a one to three mm ring and a thin partial layer.
Lacing – just a few tiny spots, typical of bourbon barrel aged brews.
Body – dark brown/black, opaque.
Flavor – begins with dark chocolate, but not overpowering. As it warms, the bourbon and alcohol begin to appear. Warming it in my mouth really brings the alcohol out, blasting over the bourbon and the chocolate. The aftertaste is chocolate. No hops, no diacetyl.
Palate – medium, creamy, soft carbonation.

The palate seems a little light for an imperial stout but otherwise it’s pretty good.

Appearance 4, Aroma 4.5, Flavor 4.5, Palate 4.25, Overall 4.25.

May 09, 2017
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ScruffySouthpaw from New York

4.22/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served in a snifter glass from the bottle.

Appearance: Dark brown to black color with medium bubbles to the body. Tan head off the body which rises just about one finger's length. Dropped to almost nada after maybe one sip. No lacing at all due to the slightly thin body.

Smell: Molasses scent which hovers the nostrils.

Taste: Sweet like candy which comes off very complex...molasses overdose which hits your with a touch of espresso and whiskey to go with.

Mouth: sticky brew, medium carbonation. Sweet finish which lingers in the mouth cheeks for a very very long time.

Overall: Great brew, borderline one of the best imperial stouts for the money I have ever seen. As a matter a fact, I'll buy another pack tomorrow. Enjoy, always in a glass...Salud!

May 09, 2017
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thebeers from Pennsylvania

4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

For some reason the bottle design and name really appeal to me. It sort of reminds me of 1970s euro-wannabe sophistication. I like it.

Pours black with a slight red hue, and a finger-and-a-half of tan head. It dissipates into a thin wisp across the top and leaves decent lacing.

Dark chocolate in the nose, some doughy malt, just a flash of bourbon sweetness and a hint of vanilla -- like some sort of delicious pastry.

Bitter baking chocolate is up front in the taste, with vanilla again in the background. The doughiness is gone, but there's a pleasant bitter-sweet balance from the barrel aging. Warming alcohol is present throughout, with a little burn on the backend.

The mouthfeel is just a tad on the thin side, with a slight spicy prickliness that couples with the alcohol.

This is a class-act beer. 1/26/17 bottle date.

Mar 20, 2017
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Greywulfken from New York

4.41/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Translucent brown-black pour netted an opaque black beer in an over-size snifter. A thin layer of dark foam on top slimmed to a collar and left nary a trace down the glass. Aromas of boozy chocolate were dominant, with undercurrents of vanilla and molasses. The flavors were similar: chocolate, vanilla, booze, and some light molasses-like sweetness. Feel was on the thin side for a stout, but not in a way that distracted from my appreciation of the beer. Smooth, but slick, too, and with airy wood and booze vapors. No complaints. 12/8/16 bottling.

Mar 11, 2017
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ovaltine from Indiana

4.05/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A beer nerd buddy of mine in St. Louis recommended this while we were at the brewery last year, so I grabbed it and cellared it for a while.

I don't know if that helped or not, but this just didn't "pop" like I thought a BA imperial stout from Schlafly would. It's look was even a bit muted - lots of brown leaking around the edges, and not really jet black like I expect from a big stout.

The aromas were the best part of this - big chocolate and toffee, and the barrel is present, but the barrel pulls back on the taste. Like I said, it doesn't really "pop."

If this is the worst beer you drink in your life, you're a lucky beer nerd, but it does sit below the top-tier BA stouts, IMHO.

Mar 06, 2017
Photo of FBarber
FBarber from Illinois

4.29/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours jet black. Shiny and opaque. Thin tan head is there then dissipates leaving behind tan sticky lacing and a ring of foam along the outside of the beer.

Smell has notes of oak, vanilla, coffee, roasted malts, and bourbon.

Taste is a rich array of roasted malts, musty oak, wood, hints of vanilla, bourbon and caramel on the back end. There is a touch of hoppy bitterness still present from the base beer. Really well crafted BA imperial stout.

Feel is a tad light, but not awful. Gets better as it warms. Mild to medium carbonation. Very smooth mouthfeel with some alcohol burn on the finish and lingering into the aftertaste.

Overall a really well done BA stout from Schlafly - and at the price point its an outstanding option. Don't sleep on this beer!

Feb 17, 2017
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Prager62 from Colorado

4.31/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A 330ml (11.2oz.) bottle from a four pack dated 1:11:2017 poured in a 13oz. snifter.

Look- Pours a medium thick and oily dark cola brown leaving a finger of tan foam. It lingers for a bit before settling to form a thin ring with a little lacing left behind.

Smell- Bourbon, caramel, vanilla, dark fruit and tobacco.

Taste- Bourbon, caramel/toffee, vanilla, tobacco and oak.

Feel- Oily with a medium viscosity. A bit of alcohol burn in the finish.

Overall- This is a very worthy barrel aged stout in a friendly 4 pack format. I'm curious if this is a new recipe or just a different format? A little thinner than I prefer, but the taste delivers in a big way. It reminds me of a slightly more viscous Central Waters barrel aged stout. A couple bucks more, but good is good and two bucks be damned. I'll be looking for another four pack!

Jan 31, 2017
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cjgiant from District of Columbia

4.61/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Bottle dated 12/2016:
Pours a dark brown and thin-looking. The head builds up respectably on a moderate pour. The head is a creamy khaki that just seems to be waiting for me to take a sip. Lacing is pretty and in this pour seems to create a nice landscape of the mountains.

The smell is very enticing. A nice somewhat chocolatey stout plays the supporting role to the barrel character. Vanilla, oak, and bourbon notes play the main role. This beer has a simple but quite well done nose.

The taste follows the pattern I am getting - simple and amazing. The stout taste initially hits, but is fleeting. The bourbon follows quickly to generate a cola impression (if I were to have a knock, it would be that I'd like a little more stout here). The vanilla and bourbon grow from there, but never overwhelm the stout - just push it to the side for a while. The chocolate malt notes do regain the back end a little.

This is not a thick, sweet, heavy BBA stout. It has a feel more reminiscent of maybe a Wulver or Backwoods Bastard - two of my favorite beers. It's far from heavy, but is creamy, and full of flavor as the entire palate gets a sensation.

Not a surprise that this is a well made beer. It is nice that it is also a very highly enjoyable beer to me. Definitely need to track down some more of this.

Jan 23, 2017
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Harrison8 from Missouri

4.34/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a heart-less black with a finger of buttery-khaki head foaming up top. Head retention is poor, with no lacing left behind. Very much a barrel aged appearance. Aroma is butter, barrel, bourbon, and roasted malts. Emphasis on the butter. The barrel and bourbon remain balanced in the aroma. It's not overly sweet, with the butter giving it a more fatty aroma rather then a sugary smell. Flavor profile is butter, caramel, roasted malts, with a hint of barrel and bourbon. Having a well balanced flavor profile, this beer is a little dangerous. The double digit ABV hides well. Mouth feel is smooth and creamy, with a medium-thick consistency. It slips down like butter - after all that is the word for this beer. Overall, a fantastic barrel aged beer from the folks at Schlafly. It remains balanced, and drinkable, approachable and enjoyable, and an absolute delight to sip and savor. Complexity is toned down compared to some other barrel aged beers, making this an absolute solid choice for someone looking to get into BA beers, or for someone experienced looking to enjoy a BA beer without scribbling notes in a screamer of a beer. A+.

Served in a 12oz snifter.

Jan 22, 2017
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Slack from Virginia

4.31/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Medium brown and clear. A small bit of head that settles to a partial ring. Minor minor lacing.

Nose is boozy and a bit sweet, roasted malt, and dark fruit.

Taste is similar - boozy bourbon, sweet, vanilla, spice, oak, and maybe a bit of hops.

Mouthful is on the lighter side of medium, a bit syrupy. Carbonation is average. Finish is a bit warming and semi sweet.

A barrel aged imperial stouts that reps more like an English barleywine. Pretty impressed here. Ibex Cellar is making great things (hat nod to the Eleventh Labor). The booze is present but not overwhelming. Similarly the bourbon barrel brings the sweetness and oak. Very very drinkable.

Jan 14, 2017
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PprBurke from Virginia

4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Medium body, thin head. Pleasantly boozy nose. Rich malt sweetness and notes of chocolate and coffee. Medium thickness in the mouth, perhaps a bit thinner than other comparable stouts. Overall, a very enjoyable BA stout.

Dec 30, 2016
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Sabtos from Ohio

3.51/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Black with a half finger tan head that does not retain.

Rich chocolately bourbon introduces the nose with woody oak and spiced raisin.

Taste is prune, brandy and bourbon, so...pretty hot, with oak, nuts and cola.


Dec 19, 2016
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Brutaltruth from Ohio

4.18/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From the 750 ml bottle in a snifter. This big brew pours a deep blackish
brown with a moderate head of off white foam that settles to a thick ring,
thin layer, and sports some fine lacing. Nice nose with the heavy dark chocolate,
char and smoke, vanilla, bourbon, and raisins. Flavors surpass the nose with
raisin bourbon bread flavors drenched in brown sugar and dark malts. Smokey
char notes fall soundly on the middle with dark chocolate flavors and finish with
a rich bourbon and vanilla note. Excellent mouth feel, coating, smooth, rich, and
very warm with light carbonation. Overall an excellent brew that I look forward to each year.


Nov 24, 2016
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strohme2 from Michigan

4.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

2015. Deep dark brown, almost black. Tan head, with lacing on the glass. Whiskey, chocolate and raisins on the nose. Chocolate, vanilla, big whiskey, smoke and raisins. Mouthfeel is a tad light. I bought this without checking the date. Surprised it still is a bit hot.

Oct 25, 2016
Ibex Series: Barrel-Aged Imperial Stout from The Schlafly Tap Room
Beer rating: 92 out of 100 with 1026 ratings