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

BA SCORE
4.36/5
1,819 Ratings
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Ohio, United States
greatlakesbrewing.com

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
Ranking:
#342
Reviews:
423
Ratings:
1,819
pDev:
8.72%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
1,362
Gots:
339
Trade:
33
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,819 |  Reviews: 423
Photo of MusicaleMike
3.4/5  rDev -22%
look: 2.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pouring this to celebrate the end of my local blackout! Thank god that's over...
BA Blackout pours with a deep brown body, about cola colored. A modest tan head rises about only a half inch thick with moderate head retention. Nothing impressive about its appearance for an imperial stout.

However, in the aroma I find much to be impressed with! I smell raisins, dates, boozy alcohol, oak, leather, drunken cherries, chocolate, and soy sauce. Nothing really dominates here, but it's rather well-balanced. It's a rich aroma for sure, and it promises a complex palate.

Up front, this full bodied beer has a booziness on the roof of the mouth. The flavor is a mix of oak, whisky, fruitiness, cocoa, and finally, espresso on the finish. Carbonation is medium, with a mildly bitter hop finish. It's definitely on the lighter side of the spectrum for the style.

One could call this a "drinkable" Imperial Stout, because the abv, while high, is still under 10%. The body is not viscous, and the booziness is mostly contained. It's not the best example of a barrel-aged impy stout. It's not the worst either. It's somewhere in the middle.

 1,134 characters

Photo of dflo32
3.41/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Overkill on the oaky flavor.

28 characters

Photo of babyhobbes
3.43/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

2005 22oz bottle

Dark brown with not much of a head.
Smells of alcohol with an odd whiskey/bourbon type smell. I thought these were just regular oak-barrels, but used barrels. I don't know, there definitely a bourbony sort of odor. It's a little disconcerting.

Taste: Well, it's got a good chocolate malt flavor, but the alcohol is pretty strong. It's really almost too much, to be honest.

This is pretty thin.

Drinkability: This is a great beer, but really drinks like a nice whiskey, I can't possibly drink more than one and it's getting tough to finish this bottle.

This is a good beer, but the alcohol flavor, together with the thin watery mouthfeel is a turnoff. I thought it would age better, but I think I liked it better last year.

 746 characters

Photo of KevBot89
3.43/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of BigE90
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of ford0626
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of KingDiamond
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of Brdlist
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of VAbdoyan
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of dave122382
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of kustard
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of Saudereth
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of brianlindman
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of goblue3509
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark brown almost black color with a thin slight off white head and almost no lacing at all. The aroma is of vanilla, oak, and bourbon notes, with a slight hint of dark fruts present. The taste has a roasted malt backbone with hints of vanilla, chocolate, and oak, also the bourbon alcohol flavor really comes through at the end of the drink. The mouthfeel is low carbonation a little slick and slightly creamy. The drinkability is about average, the bourbon alcohol flavor is not as enjoyable as other ris's. The taste didn't seem as balanced as others.

 562 characters

Photo of damngoode
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of Gushue3
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of Arbitrator
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Chilled bomber into a glass. 2010 vintage courtesy of boatshoes.

Previous review of the 2009: 4.8 / A+ (my highest barrel-aged RIS score at the time of this writing). I LOVED the '09 vintage and traded for a bunch of the '10s.

~~~

A: Pours a nearly opaque, ruddy brown body (translucent at the edges and murky brownish-black in the center). Some tan head, but not much retention or lacing.

S: Bourbon, chocolate, anise, vanilla, caramel, oak. Not much coffee. I liked the pronounced caramel of last year's and am disappointed to see it reduced this time. Still a good nose, but it's less pungent than I remember. Substantial booze, bordering on nail-polish remover. I'm not happy with this year's nose.

T: Bourbon, chocolate, raisins, and anise are the strongest flavors, in order. Bourbon isn't overwhelming. It pairs well with vanilla and chocolate in the mid-taste. The vanilla tastes artificial. Some caramel and roast, with tannic astringency in the finish. A nuanced flavor, but I'm disappointed that the caramel is lessened and the oak is brought out more in this year's batch. And, as mentioned above, it's somewhat hot.

M: Medium-bodied, but creamy. Last year's wasn't a hefty beer, either, but this one seems drier and less expressive in flavor. It also has a mild heat to it, which becomes amplified by the lack of sugars to cover it up.

D: I'm a little disappointed by this year's release. I had multiple bottles of the '09, including one as recently as two months ago, so it's not an embellished memory in my head. This year's changed, and it's not as synchronized to my palate as last year's was. It's still a good beer, just not a great one. I seem to be the most apologetic about it, as a bottle split 3 ways left more than 16 oz in the bottle. This one really didn't win over our tasting group as much as last year's.

 1,847 characters

Photo of vissai
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of m_dub
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of davesway10
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of DeskLazer
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of bsuedekum
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of ArchEnemyBrew
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of Graffy
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Photo of drummermattie02
3.5/5  rDev -19.7%

Great Lakes Barrel-Aged Blackout Stout from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 4.36 out of 5 with 1,819 ratings
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