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

BA SCORE
96
world-class
1,810 Ratings
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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
Ratings:
1,810
Reviews:
421
Avg:
4.33
pDev:
8.78%
 
 
Wants:
1,366
Gots:
340
For Trade:
34
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,810 |  Reviews: 421
Photo of calcnerd
4.5/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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

Poured via 22oz. bomber into goblet on 12/19/08. Thanks to Deuane for sharing.

A - Poured an opaque, deep black body with slim tan head that receded into patchy film and left decent lacing around the glass.

S - Subtle nose for a barrel-aged stout with hints of bourbon, chocolate malt, licorice and a bit of alcohol.

T - Initial flavor is a mixture of bourbon, chocolate, mild coffee and woody notes with a definite oak presence. The bourbon rose to the forefront as the liquid approached room temperature.

M - Smooth and creamy texture with soft carbonation and a bit of heat from the alcohol presence.

D - The bourbon character is fairly subtle here, making this one go down quite easily. Good stuff!

 711 characters

Photo of BeerBucks
4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of CaptDavyJones
4.97/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Had this on tap (10 oz) at the Blue Tusk in Syracuse. Poured almost pitch black color with crimson red hues along the sides. Thin tan colored head that dissipated fairly quickly. Tiny stream of bubbles surface around the edges consistently.
Aroma is nothing short of spectacular. Bourbon cask aroma, with lots of vanilla, oak and hints of caramel, some coffee and milk chocolate. It is very aromatic, yet it is not very overwhelming.
Taste akin to the aroma is high on bourbon, with a nice taste of vanilla/sweetness taking over the bourbon, which finally gives way to smooth yet bitter chocolate and coffee notes with just a hint of bitterness in the finish. Surprisingly clean finish. Full-bodied and silky smooth on the palate.
This has to be hands-down one of the best bourbon barrel aged stouts I have had so far, period. Nothing short of spectacular.
The levels of balance achieved in the aging process is just fantastic, and no words can express it more than actually getting a taste of it. I was told by the Great Lakes employees that they only make 800 bottles a year which are sold only at the brewery. It's a shame it is not sold elsewhere. If you enjoy the regular Black Out Stout; which is also very good, then you will absolutely, positively enjoy this one.
Definitely worth a try and comes highly, highly recommended.

 1,336 characters

Photo of HardyA
4.25/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of mikeincharleston
4/5  rDev -7.6%

Photo of tbone1384
4.51/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of Damian74
4.25/5  rDev -1.8%

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

Review from notes-on tap at GLBC on 8/13/11. This is actually the 3rd time I've had this beer-and the 2nd time I've had it on-tap

A- Body is big, thick, nearly black, viscous, and opaque. Served with a minimal head which retains well at a collar. Little to no lacing is left behind in the glass.

S- The base is pretty Russian Imperial Stout-like (moreso than original blackout to me)- dark chocolate, anise, currants. Lots of smooth woody wet oak overtones and big mildly sweet bourbon barrel presence at the back. All of these characters blend together nicely an one does not stand out more than another.

T- Flavor is much like the nose. Initial flavors of RIS-with highlights of anise and dark chocolate come through the most initially with just the slightest hint of bourbon sweetness as an overtone. The smooth woody oak rushes in and blends with the bourbon alcohol burn of the finish without detracting from the well put together RIS base beer.

M- Fantastic. Low to medium carbonation and a big, thick, smooth, viscous body.

O- This is my 3rd experience with this beer. All three times it has been an exceptional, stand out-BA RIS-one of my favorites in the category for sure. Its got a lot of everything with an exceptional blend. Great brew put together by Great Lakes.

 1,282 characters

Photo of Brew33
4/5  rDev -7.6%

Photo of ystazi
4.42/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of ncaudle
4.25/5  rDev -1.8%

Photo of Vancer
4.85/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Beer sent via the Simply Beer BIF from Mike (mcallister), thanks guy!

Oh man, label says bottle number 412 of 900, bottled in 2006.n This is one of those beers you hate to open, but then you realize - what the fork, let's rip into it.

Daaammn, this is bourbon with a stout backbone. Pure black, no head - the 9% dominates the pour and subdues all head. Beer just doesn't get any better than this.

Cherry boubon mash, guessing Jim Beam (one of my favorites). This thing takes your breath away, in a most enjoyable way. Luvly beer to start (hopefully) spring in 2008.

 568 characters

Photo of Kramerbarthomer
4.64/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of lillitnn92
4.8/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Very good, delightfully surprised. Wasn't expecting it to be that good.

71 characters

Photo of vonnegut21
4.15/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a deep black with minimal head.

S: Nice barrel character, toasted malt, chocolate, Hints of vanilla and caramel. An excellent tasting beer.

T: Vanilla, caramel, bourbon and baker's chocolate. Mild roasted malt and slight hop bitterness. Very mild flavor profile for a barrel aged beer.

M: Mild carbonation, and a bit thin honestly. I'd like a little more body in my barrel aged stout.

O: A pretty nice barrel aged stout. Definitely worth seeking out, but not up there with the elite BA stouts out there.

 516 characters

Photo of MacQ32
4.5/5  rDev +3.9%

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

On tap at the brewpub during the mug club member release party.

A-Deep dark, almost black, brown with ruby highlights. Small tan head holds on and finally lets go to a rim of film along the edges. Spotty lace clings behind.

S-Present, but not overwhelming, bourbon notes with oak, vanilla, earth, tobacco and bitter chocolate swirling with roasty/toasty malt.

T-Mmmm, mmmm, mmm! A bif ole mouthful smooth, mellow oak aged bourbon. Vanilla and caramel malt sweetness are complimented by dry/bitter tones of chocolate, oak, espresso and tobacco. Alcohol heat certainly present but not offensive. All well supported by a healthy dose of roasted malt.

M-Medium-heavy body with a super smooth and luscious!

D-Big and robust...a brew with serious kahones! A beer that deserves more (shhh lets keep it to ourselves) hype. Who cares as long as I can get more in the future.

 873 characters

Photo of JimmyFlatRock
3.96/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Sean9689
4.27/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 vintage, 22oz bomber, into Darkness tulip.

A - Pours black (hence, Blackout) with a tannish colored head that builds up to about a fingers-worth of head and then disipiates down to a thin cap and a tan ring around the edge and some lacing on the side of the glass.

S - Sweet milk chocolate, bourbon, gingerbread, vanilla, cinnamon, expresso, and caramel. I'm mostly picking up the sweetness of this one, and really not much of the bourbon or oak. Each swirl of the glass refreshes the sweetness, but no alcohol hotness in sight. Amongst the best-smelling RIS's I've ever had.

T - Not near as sweet as the nose. Bitter dark chocolate and expresso are most prevalent and once the initial bitter notes back off, there's a slight sweetness on the finish. The oak and bourbon is there, but it adds to the beer and melds well with the bitter chocolate and coffee notes.

M - Medium bodied, perhaps a bit too thin for me, but still a rich beer nonetheless. Carbonation is slightly tingles and the finish is dry, and leaves you wanting to refresh your palate with more Blackout goodness.

D - The 2008 vintage is drinking nicely at the moment. The alcohol is hidden pretty well and once detected, adds to the overall flavor. I'm going to wait a while to open a 2009, but I'll add my notes here when I do so.

 1,307 characters

Photo of LeeEvolved
4.27/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of halo3one
3.5/5  rDev -19.2%

Photo of msubulldog25
4.17/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Another from a stack of found notes ~ this one dated Nov 7, 2010.

22 oz. bottle, sent late in 2009 by one of two fine BAs (trep or pecorasc?), poured to a large snifter. '2516 Series', labeled 9.0% ABV; undated, but about 1 year old at consumption time.

A: Dark, but not 'black'; glugs from the bottle with a slight transparency/thinness. A fractional head, maybe a centimeter or so of bone/eggshell cream ebbs to a swirling film. Some fleeting bubbles rise and lace webbing sticks like snowflakes.

S: Love the scent! strong (but not overpowering) bourbon woodiness and spiced grain with warm vanilla, all engulfing fudgy chocolate. Rich and just sweet enough, excellent roast/liquor blend.

T: Sweetly spiced oak, slightly resinous. Wave upon wave of dusty baker's chocolate and cookie dough. Darkroast roast covers some earthy fruit, some sweetly over-ripened berries, maybe? But the baseline here is chocolate, lots of it. Flavors seem mellow but deep, a nice tweaking of the delicious 'regular' Blackout Stout.

D: May have thinned some in its year of cellaring, which means the end result is a little thinner feeling, but soothing and velvety all the same. Maybe a little more carbonated 'oomph' was expected, but it's still a pleasingly warm medium-bodied mouth-coater.

M: Heat is diminished, drinkability flourishes. An easy sipper, surprisingly gentle on the palate. I'd be interested to compare year-aged versus fresh, but that's for another day. Well done, GLBC.

 1,477 characters

Photo of srandycarter
4.37/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours pitch black, small coffee head, leaves pretty fast. Ring remains. Webby sticky lacing.

S - Coffee up front, followed by chocolate and booze.

T - Booze is evident, silky chocolate and coffee notes.

M - Good balance, medium to heavy body, not as much carb as I would have liked.

D - Would tire pretty quick, regardless of how good it is.

 349 characters

Photo of homebrew311
4.19/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to TMoney2591 for sharing this at a recent tasting.

A: pours dark brown, some light passes through, thin head, some lacing

S: nose features a considerable amount of oak up front. The bourbon character is there and features notes of vanilla and molasses. Chocolate and raisins come through towards the finish.

T: oak and bourbon up front, lots of vanilla and chocolate. It seems as if the barrel aging has really transformed this beer- having difficult tasting the base beer. Finish is dry. This has awesome balance for a barrel aged stout...the bourbon is in now way overpowering.

MF: a little thinner than expected, or I should say thinner than I remember the regular Blackout Stout being. Carbonation is mellow.

D: This has exceptional drinkability for a bourbon barrel aged imperial stout. Lots of flavor, ABV goes undetected. Great brew!

 854 characters

Great Lakes Barrel-Aged Blackout Stout from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
4.33 out of 5 based on 1,810 ratings.
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