The Event Horizon | Olde Hickory Brewery

BA SCORE
96
world-class
1,767 Ratings
The Event HorizonThe Event Horizon
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Olde Hickory Brewery
North Carolina, United States
oldehickorybrewery.com

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Habmike on 12-08-2010

BEER STATS
Ratings:
1,767
Reviews:
305
Avg:
4.36
pDev:
8.72%
 
 
Wants:
846
Gots:
539
For Trade:
86
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,767 |  Reviews: 305
Photo of mattsmith413
4.8/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Radome
4.8/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Reviewed from a 22 oz bottle.

L - Super dark brown with maybe some ruby red in the thin line along the glass that light penetrates. Initially a fine dark tan head that fades to almost nothing. A tiny whisp of lacing.

S - Incredibly complex nose has chocolate, espresso, bourbon whiskey, vanilla, plums.

T - Depth of flavor is unbelievable, especially in an imperial stout of relatively low ABV (for the style). Coffee, chocolate, vanilla, bourbon, oak all swirl about and last forever in the finish.

F - Thick body and low but creamy carbonation seem appropriate to the experience. Moderate to high alcohol presence fits in well. Strong hops blends with the roasted coffee-like bitterness.

O - This is a great example of the style. Barrel aging mellows and adds complexity to a great imperial stout.

 812 characters

Photo of t8dd
4.8/5  rDev +10.1%

Photo of lordgrundlemere
4.8/5  rDev +10.1%

Photo of kevinv
4.79/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I've been meaning to write this review for awhile. I'm reviewing from notes from a tasting a few weeks back. MASSIVE thanks to samtallica for giving me the chance to taste this treat.

A - Pours a near pitch black with the slightest mocha colored head which quickly resides to a thin rim around the glass. Not much in the way of lacing - slightly spotty. Looks inviting.

S - Wow. Huge notes of sweet bourbon, caramel, and vanilla. Smells slightly chocolaty with a nice roast. The honey becomes more prominent as the beer warms. Truly exceptional.

T - The first thing I notice is an extremely well balanced bourbon taste. Not too overpowering or understated at all, just the right amount. Rich dark chocolate notes. Molasses and sweet honey comes through strongly, especially as the beer warms. Very caramel-y with a slight astringent taste in the finish. A bit of a char lingers in the aftertaste. I have no qualms about giving the taste score a solid 5.

M - Full bodied, creamy, soooo smooth. Almost chewy. Low carbonation - perfect.

D - What else can I say about this beer that isn't said above? The alcohol is very well hidden. It's definitely a filling beer, but one that I would have no problem drinking myself over the course of an evening.

The Event Horizon was a clear standout among many other "big stouts" at the tasting. Job well done, Olde Hickory. Hype warranted.

 1,383 characters

Photo of sommersb
4.79/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Tasted On: 01-27-2013
Freshness: 2012 Vintage
Packaging: 22 oz. brown bottle, pry-cap with wax seal
Glassware: Wellington
Purchased: Single from Duckworth's, Charlotte

Picked this up at the 2012 Event Horizon release party in Charlotte at Duckworth's

Appearance is a jet-black beer, opaque, topped by a nice tan head that dissipates fairly quickly (not unexpected for a beer this big). Lacing on the glass is good.

Smells are big and bold, of sweet milk chocolate, dark roasted malts, strong bourbon, vanilla, and oak wood. Just a wonderful aroma...

Taste is intense, starting with a big hit of booze, then leading into the rich, dark malt grain bill, plus chocolate/cocoa nibs and vanilla. Perceived bitterness is very low.

Mouthfeel is smooth and luscious. Full-bodied with low carbonation. Finishes rich, with dark and sweet chocolate plus a hit of the whiskey.

Overall, this is a world-class beer in my book that hits on all cylinders. Highly recommended!

 965 characters

Photo of maxdeusphallis
4.79/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Strong roasted malt and bourbon on the nose. A little vanilla and some very dark chocolate.

Pours dark as midnight in hell. Small tan head that disappears pretty quick.

Taste is complex and thick. Smoky vanilla, caramel and toffee. Sweet backend - molasses and dark fruit. Thick - almost syrupy.

Some heat in the throat.

Not much hop bitterness or presence. Almost like drinking sweet liquid smoke mixed with thick milk chocolate nougat.

Reminds me of Millers Toll. Super rich and complex beer.

I love this beer - but be careful, its rich like a chocolate cheese cake.

Almost too thick for me - but I love it. Feel like I need a shower for my beard after this one. Feels like it should have a higher ABV. At 8.5%, less alcohol than the thickness and complexity of the beer would suggest.

 812 characters

Photo of wcudwight
4.78/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Opaque in color with a nice creamy beige colored head. Head lasted until the glass was empty and left soapsuds lacing. Very rich and intense aromas of dark chocolate, vanilla, espresso and burbon. All very balanced and working together as a cohesive unit. The flavor is very intense without being too much. This beer walks that fine line perfectly. The flavor is a mixture of dark chocolate, espresso, roasted oats and grains, and burbon. Thick, creamy and smooth mouthfeel. Man I wish this one wasn't so limited because I'd love to stock my cellar up with this one.

 566 characters

Photo of Bonedar
4.78/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of dcmchew
4.78/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Bung
4.77/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On te hand pump at Duckworths Park rd. Dirty motor oil brown, though some light does get trough. Light brown head quickly recedes.

Aroma, heavy molasses, brown sugar, vanilla, oak.

Taste, it's all there. Some more malty toffee here. Chocolates, molasses, vanilla, brown sugar. Earthy peat and barrel, Roast and cocoa makes an appearance at the end as well.

Big for its 8.5%. It takes some skill to brew something this good without just overloading the bill and making it huge. Maybe not quite full body, but coats great, and drinks even better with the slightly smaller size.

Spent a day drinking this on cask during the Duckworths cask event last year. Didn't disappoint this year either. Thought I was maybe over praising last year, but two years in a row is the real deal. This is up there with Bourbon County for the non-coffee bourbon stout.

 850 characters

Photo of Joshuamcsee
4.77/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a bomber of the 2012 release a week after tasting the 2011 aged a year.

A: Darker than a black steer's toucas on a moonless prairie night. Little to no head.

S: Dark chocolate, bourbon, and thick honey. Even the smell is rich. Reminds me of those little chocolate barrels of whiskey they sell at the Vegas airport.

T: The dark chocolate hits you hard up front, and the whiskey lingers. The honey is always there as a nice compliment. The relatively low ABV is hidden well. The charred bourbon is there but more as a complimentary sweetness than a bite.

MF: Not as thick as many imperials. Great balance: not too heavy not too light. Medium carbination for the style. Lingers for quite a while.

Overall: Damn. This is a fantastic beer. Definitely one of the best North Carolina has to offer, and that's saying something these days. After tasting this I bought way too many. A couple for Christmas presents, a couple to stash away for a year, and a couple to enjoy now. Pick a few up while you can.

 1,013 characters

Photo of AndrewPalmer
4.77/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of glazeman
4.77/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Huge thanks to Macky20 for this one! Split with airohead2001 and Zpack. Poured into a snifter.

A: Dark black, like the rim of a black hole. Excellent dark mocha colored head that has moderate retention and great lacing.

S: I popped the bottle and was blown away by the melding of the maple and bourbon notes on the nose. A truly phenomenal smelling beer without being overly strong smelling. I get a bit of vanilla at the end.

T: There's prefect balance of everything that should be in a stout. The bourbon is more of a supporting role and is not overbearing in the least. There's great roasted coffee, some maple, and a tad bit of vanilla and dark fruit, though not much of the later two. My only complaint is that this is a bit too sweet.

M: At first I thought this was a tad thick, but as it warmed it was near perfect. Excellent carbonation and aftertaste let this sit on the tongue perfectly.

D: I could drink this all day long without hesitation. It's up there with bourbon barrel plead the fifth and rare BCS for the best and most drinkable bourbon barrel stout I've had.

 1,084 characters

Photo of rongcsc
4.77/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of msubulldog25
4.77/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A 22 oz. bottle with a drippy purple-black wax covering, stamped 'OHB'. Split in a couple of rounds with the wife and a good friend, all to small snifters, post-dinner. Sufficiently warmed out of the fridge, so low 50s serving temperature.

'Ale Brewed with Honey and Aged in Bourbon Barrels'
How OHB got away with the name, a blatant rip-off of the late 90's genre-busting sci-fi/horror classic none of us could figure...

A: An Abyss-ian black, a couple of the stronger pours displayed a swirling topping of muddy-tan cream. At best, they crested at a half-finger; a couple others were a bit less robust. Speckles of lace, nothing too binding.

S: Uncapping the bottle released a wondrous scent of chocolate and bourbon; we passed the bottle around just to savor before the first pour. Sweet coffee and ashy cocoa. Strong and completely enticing.

T: Incredible fudgy chocolate melds beautifully with creamy coffee and dark candied fruits. Right away S picked up raspberries, ripe and sweet. Bourbon isn't overdone; it lends a singed toffee sweetness and modest vanilla bean. Barrel wood is old, comfortable.

M: Amazingly rich and silky and sultry. Neither thick nor chewy and not overheated by alcohol or boozy bourbon barrel. If any flaws at all, I found it ever so slightly thin and a little less carbonated than I like - but that's some serious nit-picking. After a while, we all had to laugh about the ludicrous velvety smoothness, then we shook our heads and marveled silently.

D: Look, I've had some drinkable stouts (as in: "I really want to have this again" or "damn, where did that disappear to?") and I've had a few DRINKABLE STOUTS (as in: "I'd do things I may not be proud of later for another..."). This is the latter. Holy shit-delicious, perfect balance, incredibly smooth and not too heavy or boozy. Phrases were tossed around in our discussion during and after like 'ridiculous' and 'best ever' and 'bottled Nirvana'; I simply say 'wow' and give it the 5 it deserves. Three weeks into 2011 and this is the clear front-runner for New Beer of the Year.

We couldn't wait longer (can't believe cellaring would substantially improve this, but I'd like to find out); HUGE thanks to Metalmonk! More???

 2,219 characters

Photo of chefbrady
4.76/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

1/4 inch head. Pitch black. Aroma is intense bourbon and oak, medium cocoa and a sweetness I can't exactly pinpoint as a smell like freshly baked German chocolate cake. Body is surprisingly slick at 8.5%. Taste is wonderfully surprising as well. I agree with other posts to the similarities to BCS, vanilla, bourbon caramel, smooth as hell. Want more!

 351 characters

Photo of NCMeanGreen
4.76/5  rDev +9.2%

Photo of Chaney
4.76/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this on cask at Churchkey as part of the Craft Brewing Conference 2013. I had both a full snifter and another taster of this stuff.

A: Poured as black as night and with an oil-like consistency. That coupled with the fact that the head was only a couple of shades lighter than the liquid below it let me know right off the bat that I was in for a ride.

S: Nah, wouldn't say this was a bourbon bomb at all. It deserves more credit than that. The bourbon combined with the overall hop/malt profile produced something that was oaky, nutty, and even a bit fruity (dark fruit - dates and/or figs). Take high grade hot cocoa, throw in some dates and vanilla, then age that on oak chips and then take a whiff... You've got yourself some Event Horizon!

T: Cocoa laced buttercream frosting with oak. Simply sublime! Also, the finish on this was as smooth as silk and sort of reminded me of the first time I ever had a dark chocolate Dagoba milkshake at the Hershey's Chocolate World.

M: Ridiculous sticky lacing on this bad boy, not much bitterness, no booze detected, yet at the same time, the sugar was really dialed down to a very gulpable level. Remarkable!

O: Pure bliss in a glass. No need for dessert if you have this one around. Actually, come to think of it, there's no need for breakfast or lunch either.

 1,315 characters

Photo of SanFranJake
4.75/5  rDev +8.9%

Photo of ROBORB
4.75/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: On draft and from 22 oz bomber this beer pours solid black with a brown 2 inch head that fades quickly.
S: The beers smells like a bourbon stout should with dark roasted malts, chocolate, smooth bourbon and some residual molasses.
T: The taste is what does it for me with this beer. You are assaulted with the aforementioned malts and chocolate initially. The taste develops into a nice vanilla/coconut bourbon that is still holding onto the chocolate. And finally it finishes sweet with the honey and chocolate following through. These guys did a great job of making something just complex enough and not over the top that it is actually very drinkable!
M: The mouthfeel is on par with some of the best bourbon stouts that I have had. The carbonation level seems to be just right but I would still like it to be a little more viscous.
D: At 8.5 ABV and the taste not fatiguing your palate this beer is very drinkable.

Kudos to Olde Hickory for a great job on this beer, highly recommended.

 995 characters

Photo of mctizzz
4.75/5  rDev +8.9%

Photo of buyyourfreedom
4.75/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Mantooth
4.75/5  rDev +8.9%

Photo of HopsForBrains
4.75/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

The Event Horizon from Olde Hickory Brewery
4.36 out of 5 based on 1,767 ratings.
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