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Great Lakes Barrel-Aged Blackout Stout | Great Lakes Brewing Co.

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BA SCORE
96
world-class
419 Reviews
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Great Lakes Barrel-Aged Blackout StoutGreat Lakes Barrel-Aged Blackout Stout
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Ohio, United States | website

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Dogbrick on 11-29-2005

BEER STATS
Reviews:
419
Ratings:
1,788
Avg:
4.33
pDev:
18.01%
 
 
Wants:
1,372
Gots:
350
For Trade:
35
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 419 | Ratings: 1,788
Photo of buschbeer
4.42/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle
Served in a Great Lakes snifter
2516 Series

A - It is black as night. There is absolutely no light coming through. A small mocha head is short lived.

S - I get some molasses, vanilla, dark chocolate, and a little anise.

T - The old bourbon smacked me right in the kisser. Oddly enough, it tastes like Blackout Stout with bourbon in it. There is plenty of bourbon, along with chocolate and molasses.

M - Nice and thick

O - If you like the taste of bourbon and stouts, you will probably like this beer. I am glad I had the opportunity to have it. Thanks Auslander.

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Photo of rodkin
4.02/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2012 bottling.

Pretty standard appearance. Black, kind of thick looking but honestly not as much as I would expect. Tiny little head that disappears almost completely, leaving minimal lacing around the side of the glass.

Smell is coffee, chocolate, some barrel, bit of heat, maybe a little vanilla. More of the slightly bitter burnt malt flavors than the sweet ones, though.

Taste confirms the smell. Burnt coffee grounds, dark chocolate, some bourbon, and just a little hint of vanilla sweetness. It's actually pretty nice, avoids a cloying sweetness. A little milk chocolate on the way down, especially as it warms. Maybe a tiny bit of dark fruit, too. It's not too hot, but it does have a kind of boozy flavor.

Mouthfeel is fine. Not too thick, but it works pretty well. Decent carb, decently creamy.

Overall, a pretty good BA stout. A bit too boozy for my taste, which hurts drinkability, but it's got some good flavors. I'd be curious to see what some age does to it. Didn't really blow me away, though... maybe I've just been having too many stouts recently.

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Photo of NorthsideFred
4.62/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Enjoying a 2009 bottle thanks to Kels. I've been holding onto this for almost two years. Thought this would a be great gift to myself for fathers day.

A: Looks good. Almost black with very little carbonation and minimal lacing.

S: Excellent. Bourbon and damp oak are the predominant smells.

T: Very nice. The bourbon grabs you first, but I also get chocolate and a hint of smokiness.

M: Full bodied, silky smooth.

O: Top notch all the way!

I don't know if I'll ever be fortunate enough to land this again. One can only hope.

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Photo of Spider889
3.92/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2012 Vintage: "2516 Series"

The snifter of this that I had at the release party seemed underwhelming, but I interpreted it as a rushed keg (I want to say they kept pushing back the release date due to space/tank availability issues. The carbonation was low and the beer seemed lackluster and soapy to some extent (but still desirable).

This bottle rectifies that, and falls more in line with past releases...

A - Poured into a Cigar City snifter. The beer is a dense black. Blackout Stout has never been the thickest of beers, 2011 vintage more than I remember in years past, even. But somehow this bottle of BA Blackout seems thicker than the base beer (normally I find this to be the reverse). The head is rather short, a greyish cream color, but has decent enough staying power over time. Only the slightest hint of lace feebly clings to my glass.

S - The aroma is the best part of this beer - at least this year's vintage, at this point in the aging process. Vanilla and oak are huge here, and appreciably make this one to inhale over and over again.A slight roasty chocolate notion falls in line behind the luscious vanilla, and as I dig deeper still - often by literally getting my nose deep into the snifter - I can find ripe bourbon whiskey character. It's slightly fruity and a little boozy with a dollop of honeyed sweetness on the back end.

T - The bourbon is really prominent this year. I find it slightly off-putting for my tastes. The bourbon is not hot by any means, but just potent. It masks much of the base beer which disappoints. The fruity character of the bourbon almost tricks me into thinking that there's a tartness to the beer, but closer inspection tells me that yes, this is only the prominence of the barrel. Charred oak and mild ash hints to what this beer once was, and a subtle sweet chocolate note foretells what this beer will one day become if cellared. In any case, this beer is still delicious, but needs some extended age for me.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Sticky texture with a nice mocha coffee finish/aftertaste.

O - There's a reason this is one of my favorite beers - Great Lakes knows their stuff. This year's vintage is simply more whiskey-forward than I remember from last year. Ought to age very well.

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Photo of Brabander
4.5/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I got this bottle a few weeks ago from my beerbuddy Jeffo. Thanks for this one Jeff!

Drank it yesterday in my Struise glass, like always i drink my beers in my Struise glass.

Nice pour with a creamy strong lightbrown head and a pitch black/very darkbrown fluid. Good start!

Smell of coffee and very dark chocolate. Very easy drinkable but a strong one. Enjoyed it till the last drop. Mouthfeel was very nice, this is a friendly RIP to drink, not the best i ever had but it is a good one!

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Photo of Gosox8787
4.3/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 oz. waxed bottle chilled and served into a Kate the Great snifter. Big thanks to Urbancaver for the bottle. 2012 vintage.

Appearance: Appears to be pretty black in color. A nice creamy medium brown head with pretty nice retention.

Aroma: Lots of chocolate and fudge notes upfront. Some roasted coffee beans and bourbon notes really stand out too. Definitely is pretty barrel forward, but not quite close to Bourbon County. Caramel and vanilla round it out quite nicely.

Taste: The chocolate and fudge notes again dominate, but there is enough bitterness to keep this from being cloying. Really nice layered coffee and vanilla. The bourbon is definitely front and center without making this boozy at all.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied and creamy. Nice carbonation.

Overall, a really nice and balanced bourbon barrel stout. Definitely a nice strong barrel presence and really nicely balanced for how fresh it is. I would definitely get this again.

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Photo of CuriousMonk
4/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from '10 bomber into tulip glass. Pours opaque dark brown color with a small off white creamy head. Smells like chocolate liquor, vanilla, brown sugar and molasses. Initial taste is a medium body that coats the mouth with caramel and roasty smokiness. Quite a lot of warming from alcohol. Finishing with chocolate and warming alcohol presence. Flavor hangs around for a while, but doesn't quite match up to the regular blackout stout that I really love. A still good beer nonetheless, but I'd rather get a six pack of the regular one which is much easier.

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Photo of beergod1
4.42/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured an opaque dark brown color with a small off white creamy head. Smells like chocolate liquor, vanilla, brown sugar and molasses. Initial taste is a medium body that coats the mouth with caramel and roasty smokiness. Quite a lot of warming from Alcohol. Finishing with chocolate and warming alcohol presence. Flavor hangs around for a while, Beer is almost gone, and still has good head retention and some lacing on the glass. Great beer.

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Photo of Dope
4.57/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

1 year old bottle.

A: Black pour with a small light brown head despite the aggressive pour. Fades somewhat slowly, leaving decent lacing behind.

S: Lots of bourbon in the nose. Toffee, wonderful strong burnt caramel and molasses. Creamy roasted malt peeks through with some dark chocolate and coffee. Lots of vanilla and some oak. The caramel aroma is great with the vanilla.

T: Smooth bourbon up front. Again, wonderful caramel flavor. A bit of toffee and oak with it. A little bit of burn and then turns into a somewhat bitter chocolate and coffee roasted malt character. As it warms it starts to take on a brownie batter quality with some espresso. Vanilla throughout but especially in the lingering aftertaste. Hints of anise here and there.

M: Thick, creamy, smooth.

O: What a great barrel-aged RIS. The caramel and the vanilla from the bourbon is great on its own, but combined with the blackout stout just makes it stellar. A complex, well-balanced yet smooth and creamy RIS. Not hot like a lot of barrel-aged beers either. One of the nicest and easy-drinking versions around. Second only to something like a KBS, this was a borderline 5 on taste.

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Photo of derkfromwi
4.38/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 2012

A: Half-finger dark tan head, black, though pour, and edges of glass show deep dark golden-brown color, good carbonation, decent lacing

S: Roasted malts, dark chocolate, oak, coffee

T: Bourbon, dark chocolate, sweet caramel, toasted malts, oak, coffee, slight bitterness, nicely balanced

M: Smooth, decent carbonation, slightly warming

O: Very good RIS, enjoyed this after a regular Blackout and thought the barrel aging really enhanced this beer

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Photo of siege06nd
4.42/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a CBS snifter...

A: True to its namesake, this one is pitch black. A thin ring of cream colored head forms a neck around the top of the beer. Very thin, spotty lacing.

S: MMmmm, excellent. Lots of baking chocolate, caramel, and vanilla. Fairly good wood presence as well, lending a slight earthiness to the nose on this one. Quite a bit of coconut and some faint traces of ripe fruit. This bouquet is top notch.

T: Chocolate, dark fruit, vanilla, caramel, and bourbon. The barrel is quite apparent on this and the bourbon is bold only a few months after release. Age should be interesting for this brew. Really nice profile, though, with plenty of chocolate, molasses, vanilla, and caramel with a healthy dose of bourbon. Maybe one of the most "bourbon-ey" barrel aged stouts I have had, though in this case it is a decided benefit rather than being overwhelmingly brash. There's a simplicity yet a quality here that I just don't feel is found in other BA stouts out there.

M: Hints of thinness linger throughout this beer. The base beer isn't quite complex enough, and the overall experience hits the right notes, but doesn't present much in the way of surprises or depth. That being said, it is still good.

O: At first glance, I think this beer drinks a little thin. But as I enjoy and consider it more, I realize that it's not thin, just focused. This is chocolatey, vanilla-infused, coconut-laden, and filled with nice bourbon notes. A simpler BA stout, no doubt, but top-notch all the same. Very much enjoy this one.

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Photo of FishPondManager
4.42/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2012 poured into a cigar city snifter

Pours a medium heavy black with one finger head. Mocha colored and quickly recedes to a creamy collar. Pockets of bubbles stick to the glass.

Smell is divine. Cocoa, caramel, grape jelly, and a perfect hint of bourbon. Hope it tastes this good.

Oh, mama. Roasty sweetness hits first followed up with a punch of bourbon. There's some vanilla in the flavor. The fruit isn't as strong as the smell. Everything melds even better as it warms now.

Mouthfeel is creamy. Somewhat bitter dry finish. Not as viscous and thick as the label might imply.

Overall, a fantastic brew. IM looking forward to seeing how it ages when I try this vintage again in the winter time.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.41/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Black color, definitely fitting of the moniker blackout stout. Even a decent almost 1 inch amass of tan head on the top of it, really impressive appearance for a barrel aged stout. Aroma, nice and mild actually, really the best barrel aroma this side of Eclipse. Everything you'd want, chocolate, vanilla, oak, mild bourbon, even caramel and just the slightest amount of smoke/charred edge from the barrel.

And all those aromas are plenty evident as flavor as well. Rather than make a gigantic bourbon bomb (king henry) with no complexity, they went soft, I generally think the 8-10% abv range to be perfect for barrel aged stouts, the malt body absorbs lots of the heat, and you're not breathing that alcohol fire/heat while you sip on the beer. Carbonation is right on point here, low overall, but perfect for style, brings out head, the aroma, but allows the nice viscosity to chill. The sweetness is minimal, keeps the beer in the creamy category rather than sweet. Not that there is anything wrong with a sweet bal aged stout (chocolate rain).

Doesn't try and be overly complex, massive, etc. . .

It really fits into that niche of bal aged stouts like Central Waters & Fifty Fifty's Eclipse: Really damn good beers, great blending, lack of heat, nice chocolate. Rather than trying to be the biggest, they just focus on being the best.

Highly recommend. Soon enough, this beer won't be on the top100 list anymore because there's always some new, uber rare beer made in an area of the country that isn't known for beer, and it will become even easier to acquire. I look forward to that day. If you're reading this, and you have a bottle of blackout stout, yes, you can offer it in a trade to me.

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Photo of n2185
3.94/5  rDev -9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: pours black with a finger of tan head that recedes into a thin ring with no lacing.

S: lots of sweet cocoa with vanilla, oak, and bourbon dominate. There are also notes of toffee and sweet chocolate.

T: sweet cocoa and bourbon dominate with vanilla, toffee, and oak also very prevalent. The finish is lightly boozy and sweet.

M: thick body with medium carbonation, this beer is nice and lively on the tongue.

O: a good beer, overall. Not terribly complex, but quite tasty nonetheless

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Photo of Rhettroactive
4.18/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From 12oz bottle to Bruges hybrid glass on 3/13/12
*From notes

-- I picked this up at the brewery during the release on 1/16/12 --

A: Well it's dark - like that's a surprise. I mean it's got the word "Blackout" in it's name. Did you think it was gonna be anything but? A generous pour yields a 1.5 mocha head and a creamy, thick collar as the head fades.

S: Chocolate brownie batter and a touch of red fruit. As it warms, some of that lovely bourbon makes it's way into my nostrils.

T: Vanilla, toasted coconut and a bit of warm bourbon are the stars of the show. It's really well put together. There's a bit of a hop bite and charred malt on the back end.

M: Having had this on tap at the brewery, I was extremely disappointed in the mouthfeel. It felt like a weak cask ale. This bottled version though, is worlds better. Thick, dense and yes, the carbonation is right on. Not nearly the oily mess I found at the pub a couple of months ago.

O: What a great beer. Isn't it sick how well Great Lakes brews? How is it that they're not talked about as one of the best brewery in the good ol' US of A? Really, folks. Like 95% of their portfolio, their BA Blackout shines in most every way. Worthy of the hype, and something I recommend drinking fresh.

A hearty two thumbs up.

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Photo of dlello2
4.22/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Black but thin enough to get some red hues shining through easily. Small amount of head, gone quick.

S - Great smell. Lots of caramel, bourbon, raisins, some alcohol )but not enough to be off-putting). Quite delicious.

T - First a caramel chocolate sweetness. Then the tiniest amount of alcohol followed by a nice roasted coffee. Really a lot going on. The flavor lingers nicely. Maybe the tiniest bit hot at this point --it's pretty fresh for a BA beer. I like it.

M - Nicely carbonated, good feeling as it goes down. Light to medium body. Not oily or thick.

O - This is a really nice beer. It gets a lot of bonus points for being as complex as it is. It's changed a lot as it's warmed up (as expected). I love the base beer and I cannot wait to see what happens to this with a year or 2 of age on it. I have 3 more 2012's... plan on drinking one in a few months, one in a year, and one a couple years down the road. I'll try to edit this as I go!

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Photo of rtaps
4.67/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours black with a small light brown head, that has fairly short retention. looks viscous and leaves spotty lacing behind

roasted chocolate brownies, coffee, dark fruits, mild bourbon notes

very rich milk chocolate, with some coffee notes, some bourbon heat on the back end

medium bodied and carbonation, and viscous

overall the nose is great and got better as it warmed, the taste fallowed the nose it was great and got better and had more depth as it warmed, would love to get more bottles of this. thanks PittRooney for the trade

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Photo of KevSal
4.12/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

another big thanks to dblab, thanks bud!
been on a huge ba kick, heard alot about this guy, lets see how it measures up to the others (ba pt5, adam ftw, bcs 2011, ba 4d etc..)

2012 vintage 12oz bottle split between 2 eclipse snifters.

a- looks good, like the name its all black but has slight dark brown edges. slight head that dissapears quickly.

s- this one smells spectacular! tons of chocolate brownie with a strong zong of vanilla. slight alcohol in the back.

t- follows the nose but with a nice roastiness coming through from base beer. nice chocolate and barrel flavors. hint of oatmeal. slight touch of alch on the finish. has some interesting flavors that sets it apart from the usual ba stout. very nice.

m- body is thick, but medium for the style.

o- very good beer, one id love to have alongside the others mentioned above. i like the level of alch(8-10%) on this one i think its a sweet spot for most beer. its great to see how well some restrain the booze (like the 14% bcs) but its always nice to see a brewery try to brew a great beer and succeed.

side note: i really like seeing more big beers in 12ozers

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.95/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

BA review #700. Poured in to CBS Snifter.

A - Black with half a finger of bubbly light brown head that very quickly receded to a ring around the glass.

S - Huge bourbon aroma up front with vanilla and oak complimenting it. Some roasted malts and chocolate in the background.

T - Bourbon, vanilla and oak up front. Toasted oats, chocolate an some sweetness in the middle. Warming alcohol and bourbon returning in the finish.

M - Medium body. A little thin at times and definitely thin for the style. Moderate carbonation that was a little heavy for my liking.

O - This was very good but missed the mark for me (based on expectation). Needs more body and less carbonation. Mouth feel got considerably better in after about a half hour in the glass.

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Photo of coreyfmcdonald
3.7/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours dark, dark brown, a shade away from pitch black.  A finger of khaki foam forms with strong retention.

S: Strong, sweet bourbon is very prominent with milk chocolate and caramel sweetness to accompany.  Roasted malts and slight coffee are certainly in the background, but they help to balance the sweetness a bit.  

T: Again, sweet bourbon is extremely strong, a bit too strong for my taste.  Sweet caramel is also present, though not as strong as in the aroma.  Dark chocolate and very light roasted malts are in the background.  The booze is quite strong and distracting.

M: Relatively thick and creamy.

O: While certainly not bad, this beer is quite boozy and the bourbon is in your face.  I also wish there was more roasted malt and dark chocolate present. Maybe I'll wait a year and re-review.

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Photo of scottfrie
4.47/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2012 bottle into Portsmoth snifter. Thanks a ton for both, SneezyAchew!

A: Pours damn near pitch black with two fingers of creamy very dark brown head that slowly faded into a faint film. A few spots of soapy lace were left down the glass.
S: Oh man this smells exactly how I hoped! I nose is full of complex layers of dark chocolate, toasted oats, vanilla, bourbon and coffee. I get a hint of oak to round things out. This smells great!
T: Big notes of chocolate and bourbon stand out. This is a very rich and decadent beer! All the flavors of the nose are there, especially toasted oats, vanilla, and coffee. I get a bit of roasted marshmallow in the finish, and the aftertaste is lightly sweet with the perfect amount of bourbon. I’m loving this beer!
M: Thick body, very full, soft, and creamy mouthfeel, with low yet creamy carbonation. Extremely smooth and easy to drink.
O: I don’t want to say I was surprised by this beer, but I was overly impressed. I remember the original being pretty good, but not great. Barrel ageing the original is definitely an improvement. Thank you so much for the pack, Michael!

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Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
3.85/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to bpfrush for trading me this beer! Thanks Brian! This beer has been on my radar for a long time; it good to get some closure! lol.

Vintage 2010.

650ml bomber poured into a CBS snifter.

Appearance: Black motor oil colored beer with very thin cap of white head that settles quickly to ring around the snifter. Spotty lacing on the side.

Smell: A surprisingly weak nose on this beer. Faint roasted malts and some smoke. U get just a hint of barrel notes in the nose. Also a faint metallic smell is noted from the beer.

Taste: The taste of this beer is also very subtle just like the nose. The beer has two phases when you taste it. It starts off tasting like the regular blackout stout and finishes with the barrel notes becoming more evident. When you first taste this beer it starts out with a mild to moderate roast like a bigger version of blackout stout. Then the roast just builds in the beer with every sip. Close to the end of the beer you get more of the roast because it just continues to build. Smoke is noted in the middle of the beer and it almost like the smoke makes the base beer transition into the barrel notes. In the finish you get subtle notes of oak, vanilla, tobacco, molasses, black licorice, and some booze that is gone as quick as you sense it. I also taste a chocolate covered coffee bean and a lactose note in the finish. The bourbon is the last thing that you taste and its sweet with a barely noticable sour note. Fairly decent complexity, but I wish there was stronger flavors in this beer. The beer gets sweeter in a "chocolaty bourbon" kind of way and the roastiness almost becomes "expresso like" and both become more pronounced as the beer gets closer to room temperature.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied beer with low end of moderate carbonation levels. The beer is thin for a barrel aged stout. I think the beer is well carbonated and it really helps to make this beer taste better.

Overall: It reminds me alot of a Barrel aged Milk Stout brewed with coffee. Its just not a really strong flavorful barrel aged beer. Its a solid beer that has decent complexity, but I was underwhelmed by the nose, taste, and mouthfeel of this beer. Even though I was fairly critical on this beer, I still did enjoy drink this beer. My recommendation is to drink this beer at room temperature because this beer really needs time to open up so you can get the most enjoyment/flavor out of this beer. I am also thinking that this beer might be better to drink fresh.

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Photo of MrVonzipper
4.89/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottled 1/12
Black. Nice 1cm tan head. Good retention, Good lacing. Fairly oily.

Big rich and bold nose. Fantastic. Big rich fudge chocolatey brownie. Dark roasted nuts. Mild bourbon. Nice vanilla and rich caramel. Mild oak.

Flavor is just amazing. From beginning to lingering after taste just delightful! Such perfect balance. Big fudgy chocolatey brownie with lovely vanilla and mellow bourbon. No heat what soever. so easy to drink!

Medium bodied. Not as viscous as anticipated. Silky smooth. Very little carbonation.

Overall just an amazing beer.

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Photo of WillCarrera
4.38/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle, 2012 vintage, poured into a snifter. Thanks to TomTwanks for providing this beer.

A- Pours black as hell, capped with a very thin layer of tan head that settles to a few wispy patches.

S- Bourbon, lots of chocolate, some oak and vanilla.

T- Mix of chocolate and bourbon right up front, the bourbon is smooth and isn't overpowering, it does a great job of complementing the roasted malt flavors. Lots of bitter dark chocolate and roasted bready malt, slight coffee. Oak and vanilla in the background. Slides in a roasty, bourbon-tinged finish with some considerable boozy, dark fruit sweetness.

M- Full-bodied, lots of carbonation, has a prickly feel, otherwise smooth, mild alcohol on the finish.

O- A pretty damn tasty stout, it's not the most extreme or in-your-face, but the flavors are delicious and well-balanced.

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Photo of MrDanno96
4.08/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

January 2012 Vintage from the bottle.

A: Dark as night with about a finger of tan head. A decent amount of foamy lacing.

S: Bourbon and woodiness, with very faint hints of vanilla and roasted malt. Chocolately notes come through as the brew warms. Not quite as in your face as other BBA stouts, but still good.

T: Roasted malt and bitter chocolate are actually almost just a prominent as the bourbon barrel. Again not as in your face as most barrel aged brews, but very good balance.

M: Barely full bodied, which is a rarity for a barrel aged stout - they're usually thick and syrupy. It works for this beer, though, since it isn't as big as many other barrel aged beers. Alcohol is apparent, but does not interfere.

O: A very good beer. This was the first time I had had this in its bottled form (living in Cleveland, it isn't too hard to get some on draft around release time). I like the fresh bottle a little more than the fresh tap. A little more balance, not as much alcohol presence (though there is still some). Not quite as good as some of the elite BBA stouts like BCBS, but a great beer nonetheless. The Ohio 12% cap on abv probably does not help Great Lakes in this respect, but they turn out amazing beer anyway.

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Great Lakes Barrel-Aged Blackout Stout from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
96 out of 100 based on 419 ratings.
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