Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Cherry Stout | Central Waters Brewing Co.

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Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Cherry StoutBrewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Cherry Stout
Very Good
840 Ratings
Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Cherry StoutBrewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Cherry Stout

Brewed by:
Central Waters Brewing Co.
Wisconsin, United States

Style: American Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
We throw 75 pounds of tart Door County cherries into each oak barrel with a rich imperial stout, then age it 6 months.

Added by dirtylou on 03-22-2007

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 840 |  Reviews: 275
Reviews by Beerandboards:
Photo of Beerandboards
3.73/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75


A - black, about a 3/4 inch of loose khaki head.

S - dark cherry, chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, oak.

T - I personally think its a bit better than some of the other reviewers. I don't find the cherry out of balance. Gods amount of chocolate, bourbon, barrel, vanilla, along with the cherry.

M - too thin and a bit high in the carb department, but not bad.

O - tasty, a bit different, not the greatest thig ever, but certainly enjoyable.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of stakem
3.29/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

2010 12oz bottle poured into a tulip appears black in color with brown clarity around the edges. A tan cap barely forms and holds with just a ring around the perimeter.

Aroma comtains milk chocolate, licorice, faint cherry, leather, earth and a hint of oxidation.

The taste has fruity cherry upfront but almost an underripe cherry/pitted/earthen flavor. Some leathery notes with really no barrel character to speak of. The roastiness of the grain fills the flavor void.

This is medium to lighter in body with moderate to low carbonation. Its not terrible but its also not what I expected. cherry - yup. stout - ok. barrel - where?

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Photo of WiscoTerr
4.19/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Released and picked up today, been wanting to try this for a long time. Poured into a tulip.
Look-Murky brown/reddish tint to this beer. With 75 lbs of cherries per barrel, no doubt that's the color. Not the best looking, but no matter.
Smell-Slightly tart and bourbon. Not a huge nose on this beer, pretty subtle.
Taste-Was not expecting this. For the longest time in my head I was thinking this would be a sweeter stout, but leans very much to the tart side. Bourbon up front, and as the beer warms a cherry flavor mid-palate. Beer finishes with a tart and even sour cherry flavor.
Feel-Not an overly heavy beer like some other big stouts like this. A bit more carbonation which lends well to the overall flavor. Beer doesn't sit on the tongue to long, which is nice in a beer like this. Makes it an easy drinker.
Overall-I really like this. Better as it warms, and was on the fence at first. When I got over the fact that it was sour instead of sweet, I kept wanting more. Will be trying to track down another 4-pack today.

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Photo of CrellMoset
3.97/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle courtesy of czoch74 - a huge thanks to a great trader. Poured into a cervoise.

Appearance: Pours a deep, dark obsidian, not quite pitch black, with a number of less intense hues are showcased around the peripheries when you hold it up the light. The head leaves a little to be desired - the half-finger of moderately tanned head fizzes and surges and quickly fades down in to a thin collar of delicate, compact lace and an oblong swath of floating lacing.

Aroma: Most decidedly a stout, with plenty of toast, cocoa, dark, roasted, heavily-caramelized sugars, and earth tones. Olfactory earth tones, that is. Both sweet and tart cherries - I'd say about a 1:1 ratio - compliment the base beer nicely, and a fair amount of bourbon spice creeps through about mid-whiff and hangs around 'til the end.

Taste: The most pleasant aspect of this brew is that it actually IS very stout-like. There is a strong, solid stout underneath the embellishments that characterize this beer - heavy toasted malts, dark toffee, faint chocolate, and earthy tones are all highly prevalent. The next most obvious note - perhaps even more obvious than the last - is a moderately tart, juicy cherry note, authentic, reasonably well-integrated, and complimented fairly well by the chocolate overtones attributed to the base beer (who doesn't like chocolate cherries?). The bourbon is an afterthought, nearly - there's a faint spiciness in the very finish of this one, and a fair amount of wooden earthiness that belies this one's barrel origin - but, by and large, this is a cherry stout, and a fairly fine-tasting one at that.

Mouthfeel: A largely "dead" beer - that is, one with minimal carbonation in a relatively thick (but not syrupy or cloying) body - but I think it works well with the flavor profile, which I'd have to classify as tending more towards the "dessert" side of things. Also a plus - hardly any after-feel, so it's a very clean, fresh sipping beer.

Drinkability: A solid and enjoyable brew, reasonably complex, deceptively drinkable (no abv% listed, but I'd estimate it at between 8% and 9%), and an overall good effort from Central Waters. Most things worked fairly well - I'd have liked a little more of this here, and a little less of that there - but on the whole, CW has done a good job with what is in actuality a remarkably difficult combination of flavors and components to pull off expertly (cherries aren't pumpkins, but they're not exactly cocoa nibs either). Recommended, if this is your thing.

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Photo of don1481
4.21/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle poured into pint glass. I swear, if this gets infected like the Peruvian Morning, I'm so unbelievably done with CW. Aw, who am I kidding? I'LL NEVER QUIT YOU, CENTRAL WATERS!

2014 vintage.

Appearance: Pours a deep, dark ruby with a small reddish tan head that rapidly dissipates with zero lacing.

Smell: Bourbon. And cherries. And oh so inviting!

Taste: This is.... different. It's definitely got the bourbon kick to it, but that's quite a bit of cherry goodness there as well. You'd think that one would overpower the other, but if anything, the bourbon's a little stronger than the cherry here. Very nice.

Mouthfeel: I was frankly expecting sticky, but this is surprisingly clean and pretty crisp for a stout. Impressive.

Overall: I'm gonna age the remaining three bottles a few more months and then have another. And hopefully another. And hopefully... I can keep this around a bit longer...

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Photo of t2grogan
4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of CavemanRamblin
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of Schlais
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of tbryan5
4.02/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of GameOfBeers
3.71/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of BubalooBrewMaster
3.25/5  rDev -15.4%

Photo of Ben7773
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of orbitalr0x
4.24/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out of the 12oz bottle a dark brown with ruby red highlights and a nice light tan head on top. Aromas of tart cherries right off the bat mixed with nicely roasted malts and a woody bourbon aroma as well. Some caramel and maybe even a touch of coffee. I really enjoy the tart cherry integration.

First sip brings a light roasted malt profile upfront. Tart cherry flavors follow with woody bourbon accents. There's a nice mix of caramel and chocolate flavors hiding in there as well as a touch of coffee. The brew finishes with a lingering cherry flavor and a touch of bitterness. Good stuff.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and smooth. Good carbonation throughout, this flows across the palate nicely without becoming too heavy. A tasty brew that I'm glad to have had the opportunity to sample. Cheers to Cental Waters for another tasty bourbon brew.

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Photo of googs509
3.93/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of SD-Alefan
4.45/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very dark, opaque brown with a minimal tan head.
Aroma is chocolate, roasted grain, fresh cherries and a touch of vanilla.
Tastes amazing. Cherry tartness with dark chocolate, hints of roast coffee, booze and vanilla.
Mouthfeel is medium, smooth and perhaps, a touch thin.

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Photo of jamato3000
4.53/5  rDev +18%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of 77apm
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of badbeer
3.88/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out black-ish, but more of a dark brown with some red when held to light. Head was a very light tan color and retained pretty well, leaving some lacing. Soft smell of cherries, roasty, some oak, a hint of vanilla. Nice smell, but not very strong. Taste starts out with some slightly tart cherries paired with some oakiness. It becomes slightly sour before bringing on more oak, and eventually some vanilla and bourbon with some roastiness in the finish. About medium carbonation with medium body, slightly dry in the finish. A good beer, no doubt, and a very well made version of a cherry stout, but I have to say I enjoy the masterpiece that is their Bourbon Barrel Stout, sans cherry, a whole lot more.

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Photo of Mora2000
4.2/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Exiled for sharing this bottle.

2010 vintage. The beer pours a dark brownish-red with a cream-colored head. The aroma is cherries and oak with some bourbon. The flavor is heavy on the cherries and chocolate malt. There are some light bourbon, oak and vanilla notes, but not near as much as in some of the other Central Waters bourbon-aged beers I have tried. Medium mouthfeel and low carbonation.

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Photo of fenlop54
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%

Photo of gibgink
3.9/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2014 version tasted on 4-23-17. Pours a nice black with small head. Inviting smell of bourbon, but CW has that on point, so nothing outstanding when comparing the brand. A hit of cherry. I didn't care for the flavor mixture. The cherries used were either tart, or the flavor didn't play well with the barrel.

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Photo of deebo
3.69/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This year's version poured into an oversized snifter, the inch of tan head quickly recedes to a ringing of head atop a dark brown brew.
Aroma of bourbon soaked cherries with roasted malt. Pretty subdued for a BB beer from CW.
Taste is like the aroma but you get more of the barrel character-oaky. Has a fair amount of tartness in the finish.
Mouthfeel is a lighter than expected with a warming finish.
Overall not nearly as rich in body or flavors as compared to the BB stout or barleywine. A bit of a letdown but still drinkable.

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Photo of OompaMentor
4.5/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle poured into glass. Dark color with modest head. Cherry notes rise from the glass! Well balanced with the malts; not to tart on the palate. 6/3/17

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Photo of pat61
4.55/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

From taste notes. Appearance: dense cherry tinted brown under a thin film of of-white foam. It does produce some lace and has good legs. Smell: Definite cherry aromas coupled with dark malt with bourbon in the background. Not a lot of hop or roast in the aroma. Taste: Has a very creamy palate featuring a dance of sweet and sour with cherry interacting with chocolate, caramel, vanilla and bourbon. A pinch of hops for a balancing accent. Mouthfeel: Has a satiating, full body with medium to medium low carbonation. Overall: the cherry, bourbon and dark malts play very well together to produce a good after dinner or dessert beer. Goes well with chocolate or runny cheese.

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Photo of bpfrush
4/5  rDev +4.2%

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Brewer's Reserve Bourbon Barrel Cherry Stout from Central Waters Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.84 out of 5 with 840 ratings