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Schlafly Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Stout | The Schlafly Tap Room

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402 Reviews
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Schlafly Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial StoutSchlafly Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Stout

Brewed by:
The Schlafly Tap Room
Missouri, United States

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
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

Added by maxpower on 11-23-2002

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 402 | Ratings: 947
Reviews by NateMac13:
Photo of NateMac13
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

More User Reviews:
Photo of richj1970
4.02/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 750 ml bottle into snifter. 2013 vintage.

A: Dark brown almost black with two finger tan head that settled fairly quickly to a thin ring. Some light lacing.

S: Bourbon, vanilla, dark chocolate, light coffee, raisins, and roasted malts.

T: Rich roasted malts mixed with good quality chocolate, figs, raisins, vanilla, and bourbon.

M: Full bodied but not thick. Nice carbonation for a BA stout.

O: Very nice stout. Might have to pick up another next time I see it.

 489 characters

Photo of Czarkazm
4.04/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

2013 Vintage. Pours a clear, light colored ruddy brown. Appears black in the glass with chestnut highlights along the edges and a light tan, tightly packed head which leaves lots of lacing. Looks like an imperial stout but it sure doesn't drink like one. On the nose, I'm getting burnt caramel, rum soaked raisins, a touch of vanilla, some oak, butterscotch. Nice carbonation helps to coat the mouth, lots of caramel and dark fruit in the taste, as well as whiskey, vanilla, toffee, and oak. There's no notes of chocolate, no coffee, no dark roasted malts; nothing to indicate that you're drinking a stout. Feels like I got a 750ml bottle of Backwoods Bastard in front of me. A great beer but I just wouldn't classify this one as an Imperial Stout.

 756 characters

Photo of PhillyJ
4.7/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Long story short world class chocolate bourbon stout buy it.....I've had several bottles and this has really grown on me. It's bourbon and chocolate in stout form. The nose is bourbon with nice barrel traces. The look is deep brown with a small cream head that keeps itself ringed around the glass no lacing apparent.The taste is bourbon wetness with a dominate chocolate follow up as it warms bourbon is intensified and chocolate takes a back seat but still present. It's a tad thin but with the flavors available and the price you won't mind one bit.

 552 characters

Photo of barnzy78
4.09/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

750mL bottle, 2009, 10.5%
A - frothy tan head atop a near-black colored ale
S - oak, vanilla, bourbon, chocolate, coffee, caramel, roasted barley
T - boozy, sweet, and rich; oaky bourbon, dark chocolate, caramel, coffee, vanilla, roasted barley, tobacco leaf
M - full body, creamy and smooth, nice carbonation
O - with the potential issues we could have come across with this beer being 6 years old, it really came through - and in a big way! I wasn't even sure if it was going to be reviewable, but it was a go once I realized there were no off flavors and it seemed to have been very well preserved over the years. I'd like to get my hands on a fresher one for comparison purposes. This was great!

 699 characters

Photo of t2grogan
3.75/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of TCHopCraver
4.19/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from notes on 9-18-10. Thanks for enjoying it with my, TCGoalie.

A: Pours not quite pitch black - there is a bit of a dark brown tinge to it. A medium well pour results in a tiny head that recedes oh so fast. The film that is left on top of the beer is mocha colored. The carbonation bubbles mosey at a snail's pace.

S: There are big flavors of mocha, chocolate, caramel, vanilla, backed by a strong oak and bourbon aroma, especially when swirled vigorously in my oversized wine glass. A roasted malt aroma is also present, but way in the background of the other smells.

T: This is on the sweet side for an Imperial Stout, headlined by the large dark chocolate and vanilla presence. The bourbon-oak flavor plays in my mouth for the length of the sip on the back of my tongue and the sides of my mouth. The finish is nicely dry and clean from the oak taste and maybe a little hop presence.

M: The brew leaves a solid medium feel on my mouth, maybe not quite as big as I would like and Imperial Stout to be. It certainly isn't a thin feel, but it is not coating and explosive, either. The finish is dry and puckering.

D: Very drinkable for the style. I found the taste quite pleasing and while this brew is not elite, it is very good.

 1,249 characters

Photo of brownbeer
4.32/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap 2009 vintage.

Dark brown, almost black in color with a creamy light brown head.

The nose is really soft with maple,chocolate cookies, vanilla, caramel, and an unmistakeable bourbon aroma.

The whiskey flavor dominates all the way through to the burn with vanilla and a cookieish fade. The mouthfeel is rich and creamy.

I thought this one has some of the better tasting bourbon barrel character, but if you don't like the taste of bourbon I can't see you liking this.

 476 characters

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.7/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From BeerAdvocate Magazine Volume II, Issue I:

2007 Vintage

Aged in freshly emptied Jim Beam barrels. Slow churning brown bubbles form a thick, tall-seated crown of a head; lacing is creamy with a healthy stickage on the glass. The color is a shade or two from pitch black. Wow, killer aromas of fusel alcohol both from the beer and the barrel, more aromatic than harsh. A bit of charred malt and dark berry fruitiness in the nose as well. Smooth and slick on the palate, dry puckering and slightly bitty wood mouthfeel middle to end. Vanilla bean and faint booze with a hard-lined wood character to start. Sweetness peaks in the middle with that vanilla flavor and some deep caramel and burnt sugar complexities. Ghost fusel alcohol is clean but warming, a little hot perhaps. Hops are minimal and not part of the picture here. Wood flavors and dryness engulf the finish.

The dryness actually makes it more drinkable seeing as we wanted to take another sip sooner rather than later. The alcohol is there but never reaches too high. We are sure age will do this beer good, but drinking it now was a treat for sure.

 1,118 characters

Photo of Kcastr01
4.89/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

This one is at the top of my list. It's a fine celebration brew but not for a night out. It's heavy. You need to be prepared to sit and really focus on it after dinner. Heavy malt notes. Excellent aroma and oaky undertones. You can drink it alone but you better not be needing to drive. A Thick creamy head with a nice finish.

 326 characters

Photo of sabitu
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of warnerry
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of DuckDodgers
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of megamass
4/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of Jason
3.75/5  rDev -7.4%

Photo of tjthresh
4.1/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours opaque black with a foamy whipped light brown head. Nice aromas. Oak, bourbon, smoke, soil, vanilla, marshmallow fluff. Wonderful bitter chocolate flavor. Finishes with a strong dose of bourbon. Really silky smooth on the palate. This beer is really easy to drink. What a nice surprise from StL.

 301 characters

Photo of merlin48
3.8/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A few months on this 2007 bomber now. Impressive packaging and box. Pours a deep brown body, almost opaque. Small beige head falls into some attractive patchy lace. Nice aroma features vanilla, bourbon, and some roasty notes of char and chocolate. A bit thin in the mouth for an impy stout. Medium carbonation levels. Taste is much like the aroma. Vanilla dominates. Subtle milk chocolate notes lend a prevailing sweetness, mingling well with the bourbon essence. Mild notes of bitter dark roast throughout. In the now vast pantheon of bourbon barrel imperial stouts there is nothing about this that stands out. A minor disappointment here from a brewery that has wowed me for the most part over the past two years.

 715 characters

Photo of Mora2000
4.28/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Exiled for sharing this bottle.

Pours dark brown with a beige head. Aroma is alcohol and chocolate with some oak and a little bit of smoke. The flavor is heavy on the chocolate and vanilla. You get some alcohol warming and the mouthfeel is very creamy, even though it is a little thinner than expected. For some reason when I drank this beer it reminded me of Black Xantus, but since I have not tasted them side-by-side I am not sure how accurate that is.

 466 characters

Photo of 1Adam12
3.5/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2010 vintage. Dark black in color with next to zero head. Smells of malt and bourbon, maybe a little maple in there. First sip was all bourbon, but as I drank the glass down i was able to get malt and some smoke. The bourbon is almost too overwhelming to catch much else as far as flavors. Mouth feel is bourbon, heavy bourbon. It keeps me waiting to catch more tastes as if finishes, but once again, all I catch is bourbon, and a nice dryness through the finish. Not so much bad, just bourbon overload. I am going to buy another bottle to age for 2 to 5 years hoping that the bourbon mellows some and I will be able to taste more of what the maker intended me to taste.

 670 characters

Photo of jaminjohnson
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of beepthebot
1/5  rDev -75.3%

Photo of kingcrowing
4.49/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Sampled at the 2010 Stout tasting in a Orval Chalice.

2007 vintage 750ml bottle.

Very dark brown with very light brown lacing. Nose is awesome, light boozy a bit of diactyl on the nose but it's not overpowering.

Taste is huge on the oak and wood, very sharp. Mouthfeel is very smooth and crisp. The light booze from the bourbon is ok and really just lubricates it down your throat and keeps the drinkability pretty high.

 423 characters

Photo of MicroBeerMan1980
4.25/5  rDev +4.9%

Photo of mjtiernan
4.5/5  rDev +11.1%

Photo of Franziskaner
4.3/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Dark black colored with just a smidgeon of light getting through when held up to a light. Brussels lacing. Nearly a half inch of khaki colored head with a few large bubbles of carbonation mixed in with what is otherwise a tightly knit head. Aroma is a luscious blend of fig, plum, black licorice, bourbon and roasted barley. The taste is a very compelling blend of sweetness along the lines of fig, black licorice, bourbon and plum. You then get the roasted barley component on the back of the palate along with the warmth of the alcohol and then it's right back to the sweet notes of fig, black licorice, bourbon and plum on the fade. The mouth is silky as well as a bit warming on the back of the palate. In summary:It's complicated, but in a good way.

 754 characters

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Schlafly Bourbon Barrel Aged Imperial Stout from The Schlafly Tap Room
4.05 out of 5 based on 947 ratings.
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