Black Butte XXVII
Deschutes Brewery

Black Butte XXVIIBlack Butte XXVII
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American Imperial Porter
4.26 | pDev: 7.75%
Deschutes Brewery
Oregon, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Black Butte XXVIIBlack Butte XXVII
Notes: Ale brewed with rose water with 50% aged in bourbon barrels blended with apricot puree, cocoa nibs, and pomegranate molasses.
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Reviews: 127 | Ratings: 493
Photo of MonDak_Joe1953
4.31/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

20oz bottle. Waxed and capped bottle. Label has best after date as '7/20/16'.
Dark brown colored body with medium brown back lit highlights. Less than one finger light tan head upon first pour, which recedes to an active surface and partial ring. Leaves behind some tiny spots of lacing.
Aroma of roasted malts, with dark cocoa, apricot, and bourbon barrel.
Taste is roasted malts, and lots of apricot mixed with the chocolate. A little molasses slides in at the end and into the after taste. There is a light spicy note. The bourbon barrel adds itself in but it is a mild intrusion.
Thinner mouth feel. Good carbonation.
The apricot and pomegranate add some pleasant fruit components. All in all well put together and the beer has aged very well. There is nothing heavy about this beer, but it has complexity and some taste delights.

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Photo of Treyliff
4.41/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle poured into a snifter

A- pours dark brown with a one-finger foamy khaki colored head that reduces to a ring around the glass

S- aroma is an eclectic mix of apricot jam, pomegranate juice, molasses, charred malt, cracked pepper, chocolate, caramel, bourbon, oak and vanilla

T- initial fruity sweetness up front, with the apricot seeming to lead the way. Mid-palate brings out the roasty charred notes of the base beer, as well as cocoa nibs. As is nears the finish, notes of sweet molasses with a pomegranate fruitiness, as well as black pepper and some mulling spices. The barrel comes out on the linger, adding oak, bourbon & vanilla. More pomegranate sticks around longe after, as well as charred malt

M- medium body with moderate carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel that turns into a creamy finish

O- I had my doubts after reading the label, but this turned out to be one of my favorite of their anniversary beers. The fruity note work well with the base beer

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Photo of garymuchow
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Not sure how I came across this. Probably just spotted it one day and grabbed it, several years ago. So now, here we are. Let's give 'er a go.
Poured a deep golden brown with a black show in the glass. Head was slow to form and low. Dark tan and inclined towards leaving. Rich dark malt with soft roast and more towards chocolate. However, the fruits show too with a nice blending and the pomegranate showing forth. The bourbon is soft in the background and then vanilla is very mild. It's a nice blending of aromas.
Lovely rich feel. Smooth and slightly sharp still. Really nice. Boy this has held up well. Still a bold aftertaste that seems to show no sign of age on it at all. The bourbon is heavier here and the fruit is in the background. These two essentially trading places from the aroma. All held up well with a rich malt of soft roast and no where near burnt. Lovely, really.

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Photo of TooManyGlasses
4.3/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2015 (?) edition - split bomber three ways. Pours a deep brown to black with reddish highlights and thin dark tan head. Aroma of sweet molasses, chocolate, coffee notes and a touch of fruitiness.
Taste is dark chocolate with some sweet but tart fruit - berry, dark fruit - molasses, some coffee bitterness.
Medium mouthfeel - bittersweet chocolate and fruit tartness linger on palate. Very nice - think better than XXVI.

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Photo of Oh_Dark_Star
4.17/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

L: Gorgeous brew. Jet black with a three finger lingering head that is frothy and tight and with lighter and darker tan hues like the head on a root beer float. Good retention and nice lacing as well.

S: Dark roasted malts taken over by tartness which smells like a blend of the pomegranates and apricots.

T: The tastes is not distinguishable as these fruits however and comes across to me more as red licorice. There are touches of cocoa and that vanilla note the bourbon brings, but there is still a bit of booze to distract from and muddle the other flavors which in turn seem disjointed.

F: Too thin. Not at all coating, soft but not smooth. This reminds be a lot more of black ale than a stout. Some of this likely thinned with aging.

O: This was once incredible on tap. A two year old bottle was a bit too boozy. This review is updated for a 2014 dated bottle aged until September 2019. I think I've concluded this beer is not really my thing.

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Photo of erk0607
4.58/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Look: Dark, dark brown, syrupy sloshing, thick fluffy, almost crunchy looking foam head (like some kind of caramelized sugar treat), mostly opaque body.
Smell: Sweet, chocolate and fruit... reddish pomegranate... like one of those Brookside chocolate covered fruit snacks.
Taste: Much like the smell - dark chocolate contrasting with sweet fruit (red berries and stone fruit), soft bourbon notes, moderate bitterness
Feel: Slight alcohol heat, moderate body, fluffy, chewy, goes down smooth
Overall: Holy smokes this beer is amazing. Poured into tulips on 4/23/19, best after 7/20/16 (2.75 years) and really wishing I bought more. As the beer warmed up it got even better. Super complex.

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Photo of SHODriver
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Poured into a snifter to a black beer topped by a dense and rocky half finger of light tan head which fades slowly to a collar around the edge of the glass with minimal lacing
S: Smells of fruitiness and chocolate with some oak and vanilla.
T: Taste is chocolate and molasses with some apricots, spices, coffee, oak, vanilla, and slight caramel. On the swallow there's more apricots and fruitiness, chocolate, spice, molasses, oak and some slight roasted malts.
M: This beer has a fairly silky and full feel on the palate. Carbonation is on the low end but adequate for the style with a drying finish.
O: Overall this is a nice beer. It has some nice flavors and complexity but some of the flavors color outside of the lines from what you would normally expect from a porter. It's well executed and I'm sure this beer was probably better fresh.

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Photo of BlunderfulGuy
4.33/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Opened March 14, 2019.

Standard appearance for the series and the style. Very dark brown, some roasted chestnut shining through around the edges, half finger of brown head of somewhat small bubbles that recedes to a small ring after a few minutes. Not much lacing, only a few streaks that stick every other sip.
Nose is spicy with generic baking spices but also black pepper, oak spice, maybe a hint of rye spirit. Some cocoa syrup, molasses, dark fruits, hints of smoke.
Full of dark and light berries and stone fruits at first and in the finish with loads of fruity and roasty grain, barrel vanillin and toast, and bittersweet chocolate and Mexican hot chocolate. Finishes with bittersweet cocoa and a little fruit then fades into a very long roast and spice aftertaste with a smidgen of smoke coming through.
Mouthfeel is good. Far from cloying or thin, pretty drinkable.

Not my favorite of the series but still nicely complex and very, very good.

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Photo of buschbeer
4.16/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a snifter

This beer pours black and is topped with a couple inches of tan head that leaves decent lacing.

The smell is chocolate with pepper and spices. I get hints of fruit.

The taste is chocolate and coffee. I taste dark fruit, pepper and spices.

Full bodied with a smooth mouthfeel

This is a good beer. I like it better than the 26.

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Photo of polloenfuego
3.73/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I feel this bottle may have been a little off.

While it looked and smelled quite nice, the flavor was overpowered by the pomegranate. It was like someone had poured grenadine syrup into it. This spoiled what I can only guess what was at one point a great beer.

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Photo of Pegasus
4.25/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Opaque dark Amber, with a small, dense light rocky tan head, which retains well. Thick, unbroken sheets of fine-beaded lacing adorn the glass walls. The head remains for a remarkably long time.

Aroma: Profound notes of fruit, particularly apricot, dominate the aroma, there is bitter coca, and molasses, as well. Lots of boozy alcohol, as well, and woody bourbon barrel notes, also. Perhaps there is a little vanilla, as well.

Taste: Opens with profound notes of bourbon-like booze and bitter cocoa, and molasses. Wood runs throughout the taste, as well as some vanilla. Biscuit malt is present from start to finish. Hints of apricot are present as well, but mostly overwhelmed by the more complex flavors of malt, bitter cocoa, and booze. Late in the taste, bitter cocoa and the bourbon-like notes peak. Finishes with a lingering barrell wood note.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, very full, remarkably soft, with just a hint of carbonation.

Drinkability/notes: Really just excellent, very, very over-the-top. Perfect for a holiday dinner.

Presentation: Packaged in a standard twenty-ounce ounce brown glass bomber bottle, sealed with a pry-off crown, and melted black wax, served in a Samuel Adams Boston Lager Sensory glass.

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Photo of puck1225
4.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had from tap today in a smalls snifter. Beautiful dark brown with nice beige head and lacing. Very smooth and rich. Marvelous mixtures of smells and tastes. Sweet berries and chocolate. Subtle floral notes. Really enjoyed it and was happy to find it on tap.

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Photo of jlindros
4.31/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a decent fizzy bubbly head that fades at a med pace, decent lacing, long legs, pitch black beer

Nose starts off like a big hitter imperial stout, loads of big sweet dark malts, roasty, molasses, plenty of dark chocolate and baker's chocolate, a bit of cocoa and fudgey notes, mild nougat and caramel, little cookie doe and baking spices, mild dates and raisin molasses fruit, a touch of a fruit apricot like aroma too, nice vanilla barrel, a little bourbon barrel juice, mild aged malt

Taste brings plenty of sweet malt, syrupy heavy thick malt, a bit of thick lush creamy chewy nougat like, a bit of roast, plenty of chocolate again, dark chocolate and a bit of cocoa, baker's chocolate, plenty of nougat and caramel, a bit of baking spices and cookie dough like again, a little alcohol warmth and tingle later as it warms, mild fruity apricot pommegranate thing, some syrupy molasses as well, and mild dark fruits fig paste, a touch of bitterness, mild bourbon barrel juice but not that much, a little vanilla oak too, sticky finish, bit more warming alcohol, sticky malt lingering.

Mouth is thick heavier bod, syrup but fluffy chewy like, some warming slight tingly alcohol

Overall a nice beer, enjoyable, not much fruit but a bit, no rose water completely lost in it all, bourbon barrel is there but not too much wish it was more, nice base beer, enjoyable sipper.

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Photo of calgecko
2.03/5  rDev -52.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I love bold, barrel aged stouts. This is the only one I’ve poured down the sink. It was like drinking beer that had been poured over dead flowers and compost.

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Photo of andrenaline
4.47/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Props to joemcgrath27 for this treat. Crushed on my 36th birthday... Flavour profile is complex but amazingly everything comes through. Apricot and pomegranite molasses with the cocoa nibs all shine alongside rich stout notes with the bourbon barrel flavours coming through on the finish. This stuff was fantastic from start to finish.

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Photo of jngrizzaffi
4.68/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Pours a pitch black color with a thin foamy head. Retention is mild. Lacing is decent. Get a big cocoa nibs aroma. I also get molasses and pomegranate. Big cocoa nibs in the taste. Some pomegranate at the end. Molasses is strong as well. Heavy bodied. Mild carbonation. Very good.

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Photo of leaddog
4.37/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance - Pours a dark jet black with two fingers of creamy tan head.

Smell - roasted malts, cocoa nibs, bourbon, molasses, hint of apricot, hint of earthy hops, and a touch of spiciness.

Taste - Nice harmonious balance of flavours with the roasted malts, cocoa nibs, molasses, hint of apricot, earthy hops, and bourbon making this a well suited sipper of a beer.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with light to moderate carbonation. Finishes with a lingering bitterness along with some pleasant alcohol warmth from the bourbon.

Overall - Another stellar birthday reserve from Deschutes. The flavours blend cohesively together which doesn't disappoint in the flavour spectrum.

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Photo of arizcards
4.43/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bottle from TW Arrowhead 10-17-15 for $15.99. Best after 7-20-16 and stored in the cellar since purchase.

Beer poured black with a very nice tan head that is leaving some lacing behind.

Nose is dark fruits, light roast, and light cocoa.

Taste is an excellent medley of cranberries and cocoa nibs over a light roasted malt base. Bourbon heat is definitely in the finish and very light with each sip.

Mouthfeel is full, smooth, and satisfying.

Overall the flavors have come together in an awesome way. Don't expect a bourbon bomb with the Anniversary porter as this is not that type of beer but if you are looking for a very good play of flavors this is the beer for you. This is likely available on shelves still.

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Photo of Beersnake1
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from fridge temp. Pours black with some carbonation. Smell is heavy chocolate, lots of pomegranate, no bourbon. Reminds me of chocolate milk. Taste is sweet dark fruit, chocolate, some bourbon, and a bit of bitterness on the end. Mouthfeel is really good - thick and creamy. Really good beer. My favorite of the birthday reserves.

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Photo of HattedClassic
4.37/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours a nice creamy brown head that dissipates fairly quickly while the beer itself is a decent looking dark chocolate black with a slightly think looking texture. It's still a good look but not much different from the regular Black Butte other than a slightly thinner appearance.

The smell and taste share the same notes but the smell comes off much better than the taste. The smell has a strong rosewater and pomegranate note that stands out among the dark chocolate and light caramel. Interestingly, the bourbon has a slight sweet presence. There does not seem to be any apricot in the nose. The taste has the same notes with a lighter rosewater presence and stronger apricot note that mixes well with the pomegranate. In addition to the bourbon, there is also a slight sweet alcohol taste as well. The tart from the apricot comes out a little bit more as the beer warms up.

The feel is good. It's a heavy bodied beer with smooth and thin texture but retains a nice heft to it. There is some light carbonation to vary the texture a little bit more.

Overall, this beer is much better after it's been aged for at least a year and definitely worth the long wait. The notes have mellowed and balanced the more acidic and strong notes out a little

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Photo of DaverCS
4.67/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Reviewed on 3/3/17; bottled on 7/20/15 with a best after of 7/20/16.

Pours jet black with a finger of off-white head. Alcohol legs and lacing present on the Barrelworks Teku glass.

For the aroma, ample bourbon and oak is present. Lots of roasted notes -- smokey almost. Perhaps a bit of underlying citrus and fruit, but not much. Alcohol is noted on the nose.

Aroma reminds me of a thinner bourbon barrel aged stout. Again, ample amounts of bourbon, toasted oak, molasses, tons of chocolate and espresso. Much of the fruit character has subsided/ is overwhelmed by the intense roasted notes, but a nondescript fruitiness is present. Could I explicitly say this beer was brewed with rose water, apricot puree, and pomegranate molasses... no, but if I tried this beer blindly I could easily say it was a delicious BA stout/ porter. As the beer warms, a bit of alcohol heat presents itself. Moderate-to-thick mouthfeel.

Overall, this is a phenomenal beer. The age limited the fruit flavors, but that was to be expected. I'm sure the fruit would be much more pronounced fresh. I see this pairing well with pecan pie. It gets a 93.5/100.

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Photo of TreyIsWilson
4.27/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Pours pitch black with a one finger tan head. Tons of soapy lacing.

S - Aroma is apricot, pomegranate and dark chocolate.

T - The taste follows the aroma with apricot, pomegranate, dark chocolate, molasses, oak and some light bourbon.

M - Medium body with medium carbonation. Soft creamy mouthfeel with a dry finish.

O - Anothe super delicious Black Butte anniversary beer. The flavors are an awesome blend of fruity and roasty flavors.

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Photo of SD-Alefan
4.5/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours black, black and more black with a tan head that fades fast.
The nose is toasty, fruity and loaded with dark chocolate.
Taste follows. Lots of dark chocolate and roast with nice undertones of stone fruit. Slightly tart and a touch boozy. Some vanilla and brown sugar as it warms.
Medium and smooth.

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Photo of Jeffo
3.55/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got this one from rutger this past summer. Cheers, man!

From a bomber into a snifter
Best after 20 July 2016
Ale with 50% age in bourbon barrels and blended with ale with apricot puree, cocoa nibs, pomegranate, molasses and spices

APPEARANCE: Clear brown pour yields a 2+ finger, medium looking, creamy, slightly crackly beige head with very good retention. Clear bistre brown body with no real carbonation evident. Head slowly fades to a ring and splotchy, swirly wisp. A ring remains until the end and leaves touches of lacing down the glass. Nice head, but the color is perhaps a touch lighter than I’d hoped.

SMELL: Bolder nose with plenty of fruit in there, pomegranate for sure, with notes of cocoa, molasses, and some spicy elements as well. Fruit forward.

TASTE: Some more fruit up front in the flavor, along with some oak, bourbon, cocoa, and then some alcohol at the swallow. Notes of leather as well. A bolder finish of wood, bourbon, leather, molasses, cocoa for sure, and light spicy flavors lingers on the palate. Definitely flavorful, though the bourbon comes off a little unrefined.

PALATE: Medium body and medium levels of carbonation. Enough weight on this one, creamy enough, goes down fine with a bit of a scratch at the swallow and finishes somewhat sticky. A bit of heat lingers.

OVERALL: Not sure about this one. The barrel aging is alright but the bourbon doesn’t quite have the character that others in the genre do. It’s a little sharp. The nose doesn’t quite match the flavor either, as the nice pomegranate character doesn’t quite make the translation to the tongue. Regardless, the experience is fun and it’s well engineered. I can certainly see why lots of people rave about this one. Glad to have been able to try it out. Thanks again, rutger. Cheers!

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Photo of dacrza1
4.4/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

DATE: December 27, 2016... OCCASION: just got back from "bowling" with some good friends... GLASSWARE: Duvel tulip... pours a dark black body that supports a one-finger brown head that bubbles and froths while maintaining its integrity... rich, thick cocoa impacts the nostrils, while bourbon, vanilla, cedar, and an aromatic citrus that makes for a full dose... full-bodied, explosive at the teeth and throat, warming and long on the finish--a thick, blanketing mouth feel that is also creamy and drinkable, especially given its ABV... the pomegranate plays prominently in this profile, with cocoa and bourbon infusing each sip with an alcoholic punch... a meal in itself, this beer gets stronger as the glass drains... fruit esters linger with every sip, and its strength holds steady... the bourbon makes its presence known...

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Black Butte XXVII from Deschutes Brewery
Beer rating: 94 out of 100 with 493 ratings