Ivan The Terrible Imperial Stout - Barrel-Aged | Big Sky Brewing Company

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853 Ratings
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Ivan The Terrible Imperial Stout - Barrel-AgedIvan The Terrible Imperial Stout - Barrel-Aged
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Big Sky Brewing Company
Montana, United States
bigskybrew.com

Style: Russian Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
2006 - 8.75% (draft only)
2007 - 8.75% (500ml flip top bottles ~ very limited)
2008 - 9.5% (750ml - capped - 1152 bottles)
2009 - 10% (750ml cork and cage)
2010 - 10% (750ml - cork and cage)
2011 - not brewed
2012 - 12.2% (750ml cork and cage)
2013 - 13.8%
2014 - 11.5% (750ml cork and cage)

Imperial stout aged 4 months in freshly dumped American oak Buffalo Trace bourbon barrels.

65 IBU

Added by Bitterbill on 11-10-2008

BEER STATS
Ratings:
853
Reviews:
292
Avg:
4.26
pDev:
10.33%
 
 
Wants:
795
Gots:
282
For Trade:
22
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 853 |  Reviews: 292
Photo of DantheMan75
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of Scobu
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of redliner8
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of trapper2408
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of Brams17
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of MikeDAdams
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of Cody_Mac
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of Stoutfan23DJ
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of thinwhiteduke
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of Skagnetti
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of oldsailor
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of afsdan
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of WhiteJordan
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of JoelClark
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of SeattleBoB76
4.75/5  rDev +11.5%

Photo of boomer31
4.74/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2010 vintage

A - After the cork broke and I put my cork screw away, poured this into myduvel snifter. Black with a nice 1/4 inch brown head. Some lacing and stick on glass

S - Dark fruits, chocolatte, sugar, wood and bourbon. A really beautiful nose with a lot going on

T - Big chocolatte and sweet bourbon. There's a hint of alcohol in the back and more chocolatte. The bourbon is apparent but not over the top. You get some nice wood and vanilla which plays well with the chocolatte which is huge and very sweet. Nice long finish

M - Rich mouth and a high carbonation which isn't too off.

D - What a great beer. Very easy to drink even though there is so much going on.

Overall I am very impressed with this beer. Sweet and chocolatty, nice wood and barrel flavor

 773 characters

Photo of Superheatnsubcool
4.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of MisterKilderkin
4.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Jtrigonis
4.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of dlello2
4.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ivan The Terrible
A – Creamy, cloudy black with maybe even a hint of grey? Interesting. Few fingers of creamy, micro-bubble head fade slowly. 5.0

S – Bittersweet chocolate dominates. A suggestion of hops follows. As it warms the smell develops into a rich chocolate roastiness. 4.5

T – Immediately reminds me of Surly Darkness (which I haven’t had or thought about in a while… interesting). I’ll start by saying this is very good. Not super complicated (much like darkness) but what it’s got is freaking spot on. Perfect amount of roasty bitterness. 10% alcohol, but super drinkable. 5.0

M – Great full bodied mouthfeel. Good carbonation. Not as thick as a Ten Fidy or FIS. Goes down easy. Again, if it weren’t for feeling the alcohol I wouldn’t know it was there. 4.5

O – This was a great beer. As it warmed up it got even better. I can’t believe it but I can confidently say my first 10oz pour of this beer catapulted it into my top 10. Will definitely be seeking it out to try in the future. 4.5

 1,026 characters

Photo of Parrotbeak
4.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours jet black into a snifter, with a thin, tan head that dissipates almost completely, leaving some remnants on the surface. No light passes through this one, even when held up to direct light.
Nose is chocolate, butterscotch, bourbon, and slight alcohol. Delicious.
As is the taste. Slight chocolately bitterness is up front, followed by a nice bourbon/alcohol heat. Aftertaste is warm and complex; butterscotch definitely noticeable. Very well-balanced imperial stout--the bourbon is not overwhelming by any means.
Mouthfeel is just as thick as I'd want an imperial stout to be. Heavy and slightly oily, but with just enough crisp bitterness to balance it out.
This one is very drinkable. I finished this bottle with no problem, and while I doubt I could polish off another full bottle, another snifter of this one would be a perfect way to finish off the evening.
This is an excellent, well-balanced imperial stout- one of my favorites so far, and a great beer for my first review.

 986 characters

Photo of hardy008
4.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2009 Limited Edition 338 of 3000.

Dark black with a 3 finger head which looks like a chocolate milk shake. Very nice retention and lacing. The aroma has bourbon, vanilla, cocoa, dark fruit, and roasted coffee, Very nice.

The flavor is just like the aroma. Bourbon, vanilla, cocoa, dark fruit, roasted coffee blend together beautifully, and make for an outstanding beer. A very nice sweet beer.

The mouth feel on this is very nice. Proper carbonation, smooth, almost like velvet. Sweet, medium bodied, and a pleasure to drink. The alcohol is detectable, but not overbearing. A very nice beer.

 594 characters

Photo of yamar68
4.72/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2012 vintage (12.2% abv):

Gorgeous looking stuff... motor oil body with edges of copper clarity, a dense pale khaki head retains well, producing smears of oily lacing and beading beneath. It looks alive and quite scary. A second pour provides a darker shade of brown, making a yin yang in the glass.

The nose is even more impressive... smooth bourbon and chocolate layered with mushy cherries, vanilla, fudge, molasses... all the tasty things you would hope to find in a big barreled stout like this. No individual aspect steals the show, everything is totally in sync which is remarkable to me given the size of the beer.

Delicious. Booze soaked dark fruits that fall just short of "hot." It's very hard to believe that this one packs the 12 percent alcohol that it claims to. Sweet bourbon with chocolate, creamy vanilla flavors, cocoa beans, faint bitter coffee presence surfaces at the finish. I've heard people say that 2010 was better... if that's the case, 2010 Ivan must be the best beer on earth because this stuff can hang with the best of 'em.

Hot damn. Fantastic.

 1,079 characters

Photo of hayesez
4.72/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought a few of these the last time I was back in Montana. Have had it several times but haven't posted a review before. Definitely an excellent Russian Imperial. I've included this beer in several beer tastings and it routinely finishes at (or near) the top. High time to give it a review.

2009 vintage poured into a Portsmouth tulip. Dark, dark brown (nearly black), with average viscosity. Very little light comes through at all, save a brick colored border when held up toward the sun. A thick dense head of dark tan quickly billows up before withdrawing to a nice one finger cap, leaving nice sticky lace behind. This continues throughout the session, although not quite as dense. This is a great looking beer.

So apparent that this beer spent time taking in some whiskey. The bourbon is the dominant smell, but a great roasted nuttiness is also very prevalent. If you like bourbon-barrel stouts, this guy is a must-try. In addition to the prevailing bourbon and roasted nuts, there is a nice sweetness as well as some dark sweet fruit that comes through. Ivan the Terrible definitely wins the aroma race most of the time.

The taste is every bit of what one might imagine given the smell. Again, the time spent in bourbon barrels shines through. It is a very nice balance, however, as the bourbon does not overpower as much as adds a very nice sweet vanilla to the mix. Dark fruits are also easily found, as well as chocolate and a slight hint of coffee. There is a lot going on with Ivan, and none of it is "too much." Throughout the session, the beer itself fills out a bit and gives a slightly more viscous mouthfeel than originally conveyed via the pour, however this still isn't a thick Russian Imperial.

Each time I drink Ivan the Terrible, I am more and more impressed. The bourbon barrel aging really is timed perfectly. At a moderate (for the style) 10% ABV, the alcohol is barely noticed. Quite easy to put away ¾ of a liter. Great job Big Sky!

Consumed: 5/23/2010

 1,986 characters

Photo of chugalug06
4.72/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

2010 - Bottle 0986 of 3800

Awesome two layered Coffee cream colored head. Brew is pitch black. Decent lacing too. Snap and crackle. No lacing, no legs. Kinda thin appearance.

Lots of cherries and bananas. Smooth dark chocolate. Very light, but well put together. Slight alcohol burn on the nose.

Awesome dark chocolate flavors, but it drinks like a milk stout, nicely sweet. Nice light flavor, not a heavy overwhelming stout flavor. Great (light) carbonation, zero bitterness, drinks wonderful!!! Thin body, but it's a great beer that drinks heavy and hearty. Amazing meld of toasty caramel and milky toffee.

Highly recommended brew! One of the most underrated stouts I've had. Awesome! It could be thicker, but it would lose some of it's appeal, it's a great afternoon drinker.

 785 characters

Ivan The Terrible Imperial Stout - Barrel-Aged from Big Sky Brewing Company
4.26 out of 5 based on 853 ratings.
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