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Barrel Aged Brrrbon (Brothers' Reserve Series) | Widmer Brothers Brewing Company

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BA SCORE
81
good
229 Reviews
THE BROS
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good
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Barrel Aged Brrrbon (Brothers' Reserve Series)Barrel Aged Brrrbon (Brothers' Reserve Series)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
Oregon, United States
widmer.com

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.40%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Bitterness: 40 IBU
Alcohol by Volume: 9.4% ABV
Original Gravity: 20┬░ PLATO

Released: September 2010

Added by BarrytheBear on 09-24-2010

BEER STATS
Reviews:
229
Ratings:
579
Avg:
3.57
pDev:
15.69%
 
 
Wants:
21
Gots:
133
For Trade:
4
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
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Reviews: 229 | Ratings: 579
Photo of VelvetExtract
3.43/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

2012 Vintage

A-Pours a clear, amber color. Head is mild, it makes the beer look flat. Minimal lacing.

S-Aroma is where you'd expect it to be. Bourbon-forward with a complement of sweet, Winter Warmer aromatics. I'm actually impressed with the intensity if the oak.

T-Bourbon lays it on heavy. It doesn't seem to match well with the beer's base surprisingly. The bourbon lingers and dries out the palate. Dried out oakiness and Christmas spice. Very sweet.

M-Softer carbonation. Booze isn't very well integrated, even after a year. Too sweet. It isn't a mess but it's nearing one.

O/D-Didn't love the feel all too much but aside from that it could be worse. Bourbon seems to disagree with the other flavors.

 711 characters

Photo of Brenden
3.48/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

This looks similar to the original, a thick but opaque orange-brown with maybe slightly more brightness, perhaps slightly more thinness in the edges. It develops a little less light orange head, just under one finger with pretty good retention but less heaviness or stick to it, though it puts down some decent spotting and patching.
The bourbon comes first on the nose, ethanolic but with a bit of vanilla and wood to it. Dark fruits are there, though covered over a little, while, interestingly, the note of grains is lessened. There's still a sturdy hops presence by way of resin and citrus rind, while The toffee and spiciness and toffee are somewhat enhanced, though the spiciness is more heat here.
In the flavor, the wood seems to overtake most of the other elements. I like wood, but I like it to be integrated for depth rather than overshadowing everything else. I do still get a hint of tobacco leaf, and I like the sweeter hints of vanilla, toffee and caramel. Hops take their place in the overall profile, and the sulfuric note I got in the buildup is diminished.
The sturdy malt backbone in this medium-bodied beer seems to have been thinned slightly by alcohol. Carbonation is still light but enough to support, but the transition from crisp in the front to smoother in the middle isn't as good. The finish does remain dry.

 1,337 characters

Photo of ryannosaurus
3.37/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

'12 poured to a snifter

Decent head that dissipates quickly, leaves a little lacing. Nice red / amber color with a light haze.

Aroma has good bourbon and strong oak notes,. A bit of odd malty mustiness, but not enough to detract

Flavor is malty and brown sugar with noticeable bourbon and oak, hint of butter and vanilla

Mouthfeel is slick and buttery, decent body.

Not as Bourbon as last year. A touch diacetyl/buttery, but that is interesting note with oak. A bit more CO2 or hops or hot alcohol might add a needed counterpoint... it's all bourbon and oak and limited bubbles. A darn good beer, a bit south of great.

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Photo of bmwats
3.2/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Poured from a 650 ml bottle into a snifter.

A: Hazy amber hue. Light rising carbonation. Pours a slight, bubbly, white head which quickly disappears. Very slight lacing.

S: Molasses, licorice, raisin, and bourbon.

T: Light malt grains and bourbon. Bitter pecan shells.

M: Boozy. Bourbon character overshadows any other components.

D: Sipper.

Atmosphere is okay. No real head or lacing. Nose is sweet and boozy. Light flavor in general, except for some bitterness and booze. Overall, this is a decent quaff.

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Photo of jlindros
3.78/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A barrel aged winter warmer, it SHOULD be pretty good, although their Reserve Series have always seemed like they should be good, then end up a bit lackluster. So we'll see about this one. Release #3 from Fall 2010, so a few years of age to help.

Light fizzy head covering that fades pretty quickly, typical for a 3 year old 9+% beer, sediment laden hazy but semi clear auburn almost mahogany brown color.

Nose is loaded with bourbon still, almost all bourbon, some barrel notes with a little toasted oak and some vanilla, and it has a nice bourbon barrel juice like aroma, as well as hints of bourbon soaked raisins and a bit of dark fruit, little caramel and toffee, mild booze and perhaps a hint of phenols.

Taste starts with bourbon again, lots more bourbon, a nice barrel juice flavor with decent bourbon but not great, more like a young bourbon, as well as some vanilla and toasty oak but not a ton. Malts come in with sweet characters but not super sweet, candy malts, lots of caramel and toffee, caramelized sugars, some bourbon soaked raisins, little nuts and figs like. Mild bitterness too, mild hop character, slightly earthy and spicy, as well as mild baking spices. Booze brings some warmth with a little ester profile. Finish is fairly bitter, bit of spicy hop character, some mild warming booze, decent bourbon character lingering but it fades a bit, bit more barrel and caramel, dark fruits, little baking spices lingering too.

Mouth is fluffy and a bit smooth, med to a bit heavier bod, decent carb esp for the age, decent warming booze.

Overall not bad, nothing too special but decent overall, nice bourbon characters although not great, nice barrel characers, decent malts and hops, hint of baking spices, booze is just enough to bring some character without being too much.

 1,798 characters

Photo of rEBELlION
3.05/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Drank this as part of a bourbon barrel aged beer tasting with friends. This was my least favorite of the bunch, which is not to say that it was terrible. As a more economical barrel aged beer, some simply outclassed it. However, even at the price point there were others that were far more enjoyable. The biggest problem with it for me was the flavor. It tasted more like it had whiskey added to it and less like it had acquired the characteristics over time. The swallow left a sort of cheap whiskey burn. I enjoy the mellow bourbon flavor that most barrel aged beers leave.
I would try it again if handed to me but I see bourbon barrel aged beers as an experience and there are far better experiences out there.

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Photo of Dr__MantisToboggan
3.54/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

2012 bottling. Chilled, poured into a snifter.

A - Pours a nice cloudy amberish color. Gives a thin, off hite head.

S -Oaky, somewhat malty, also some vanilla, pretty good.

T - Tastes like it smells, which is delicious. Bourbony, malty, vanilla deliciousness in a snifter.

M - smooth, low carbonation. Really smooth. Goes down easy.

O - Pretty good. Bourbony, which is nice, but its smooth, and I think that at its price point, its definitely worth a try.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.27/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

650 mL bottle poured into a snifter. 2011 bottle.

Appearance - Pours a deep orange, almost amber. Just a few wisps but not much by way of a head.

Smell - Caramel malt, some herbal and earthy hops. Bourbon is secondary. Some oak. Not what I was expecting.

Taste - Hops right up front, some vanilla and bourbon follow, but not the main attracting. Monotonous caramel malt followed by a nutty and oaky finish. Moderate bitterness.

Mouthfeel - As unenthused by this as I am, I'm having no trouble drinking it. Not very heavy when I think of the nature of the beer and not really boozy.

Overall - Not bad, just dull. No real barrel character to it.

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Photo of CHILLINDYLAN
3.28/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.75

Clear Vibrant Amber. Small offwhite cap that dissipated quickly. light fine lacing left along the way.

Strong bourbon barrel in the aroma. touch of smoke. strong oak. vanilla, booze, hot fire. banana and cherry.

big bourbon barrel flavor as well, overpowering the beer. rich caramel. vanilla. oak. black cherry. banana. medium light bitterness. booze in the back.

Thin watery body for the style. not smooth nor thick. some drying. low carbonation. some sweet mouth coating going on.

A thicker body and more age might do this some good. nice aroma and flavor from bourbon barrels. but light on the beer part makes this a thin watery bourbon flavored beverage.

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Photo of srhoadsy
4.25/5  rDev +19%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

2011 bottling. Served slightly chilled into a snifter.

Pours a cloudy copper color with very slight head and no lacing.

Strong aromas of caramelized sugars, dried fruit and vanilla.

Flavors of caramelized sugar, candied citrus peel, toasted coconut with a touch of booze.

Medium to heavy bodied with a surprisingly crisp finish on the tongue. Mild and sweet aftertaste with just a hint of alcohol burn.

Surprised at some of the lower scores on this one. Maybe the aging helped this one immensely, but I can definitely say this was one of the better beers I've had in a while. Kicking myself for not having cellared several more bottles of this.

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Photo of khensley
4.25/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Red in color, spider web lacing, faint rings per sip.

Smells like black liquorish in the woods.

Sweet front of tongue, intriguing bubble-gum/mike and ike's type of finish. Intriguing transition from sweet, to tart, to bitter in the back of the throat. Very sophisticated profile of flavor. Alcohol content is masked in the myriad of flavors that present themselves. A truly one of a kind flavor, which makes this beer worth sampling.

Big enough to fill the mouth, but not too big to be chewy. A bit undefined in the tongue tickle, but not so much than I mind.

I'm taken back to my days of a bourbon aficionado, when I drank too much whisky and coke. This beer tastes as close to whisky and coke as I could possible imagine. I love whisky and coke! Never saw this coming. How did they do it? A whole new category of beer. Try it, at least for the sake of sampling a one of a kind beer!!

 890 characters

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.68/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From Fall '10

Appearance - pours a cloudy light reddish amber. A thin head of tan breaks up quickly, just a scattered cover after setup, yet somehow manages some impressive lace patterns, apparently from the collar.

Aroma - faintly malty, only because the vanilla and wood are pretty dominant. Not an aggresive smelling beer by any stretch, but it's obviously bourbonized.

Taste - some light toastiness to the malt, going a bit bitter mid-palate as wood, spices, mild caramel, and some abv heat kick in. The wood continues to show on the aftertaste, providing a little twangy bite on the finish. Ends warmly, decent lingering boozy flavor but not especially layered or complex.

Mouthfeel - smooth, weighty, low key carbonation. Very enjoyable.

Overall - a fine sipper for the last few weeks of winter '13, it aged nicely.

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Photo of TheSixthRing
3.1/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had on -tap at Final Gravity in Roseville, CA

Appearance - A clear, reddish copper served to me with a thin, off-white head.

Smell - Smells like watered down bourbon. Sweet, oaky and boozy.

Taste - Follows the nose: watered down bourbon. Touches of caramel. Boozy. Not much else to describe.

Mouthfeel - Medium in body with low carbonation. Smooth. Goes down easy enough.

Overall - Call me unimpressed. Truly tastes like bourbon that's been cut with water. That's it. Really nothing else to it. Definitely a beer that won't be on my future want list.

 556 characters

Photo of secondtooth
3.69/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a rich amber, with limited head of carbonation, and not much noticeable lacing.

Nose is some vanilla and oak.

Taste is rich and sweetly malty, but I don't get much of the vanilla-like bourbon tones. The finish does showcase the warm whiskey character, though. Comparable to Alltech Brewing's Bourbon Barrel Ale, this one's not bad, though perhaps a tad high on the price ($14.99/bomber).

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Photo of ranger60
3.1/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Had it on tap at Buckeye Beer Engine.

A - dark caramel color, almost looks like a dark cream soda. off white head that really laces the glass.

S- picking up hops, not much else overly characteristic.

T- tasting alcohol more than anything. some hops, and if I let it linger in my mouth and think about it, I'm picking up the bourbon.

M- a bit harsh and strong alcohol.

O- not bad, but disappointing for a bourbon aged.

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Photo of Amalak
4.03/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A. It has a nice caramel color with a slight haziness to it. Some bubbles, small head.

S. A metallic malt scent.

T/M. It has a balanced malty taste. Some hops and a bit bitter. A slight alcohol taste, but not overbearing. Smooth and full bodied.

O. Very nice, smooth beer. For a winter warmer, it's a very nice offering.

 323 characters

Photo of JayQue
3.7/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Overall this is pretty good. Was expecting an overly sweet bourbon and caramel concoction. Other than the strong alcohol presence, this was nicely balanced and even a bit muted.

Poured a murky dark orange color with a small but stubborn off white head and some good lacing into a pint glass. Smell was fairly light, some oak and bourbon but not that pronounced.

Taste is pretty good. THe bourbon and oak were not overdone, some bready and sweet malts evened things out and there was even a mild hoppy presence.

The dominating mouthfeel aspect was the strong alcohol presence. I had this sitting over a year, and it was still "hot". The alcohol is a bit overdone but after all this is a slow sipping winter beer.

I drank the whole thing myself over a few hours. A fairly nice accompaniment for a cold night.

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Photo of KickbacksSteve
3.94/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Kickbacks in Jax. Poured into a snifter. 2012 vintage. Off-white head, moderate retention on a slightly hazy, copper body. Clear and soapy, sticky lacing. Aroma includes (suprisingly) earthy piney hops with some citrus. Slight vanilla, caramel malts and marmalade. Taste is again dominated by earthy hops and bitterness, some caramel malts again and vanilla sweetness. Not at all what I expected, very drinkable for the abv and quite tasty.

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Photo of McD0uche
3.48/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a tulip glass:

Pours a reddish, orangey brown color. Looks like your typical ale. A good amount of lacing boils up and subsides after a moment. Fairly sticky lacing rings the glass. A deep whiff earns me the scent of apples, but is a bit muted. I wonder what else is in there. A quaff reveals the flavor of apples, toffee, dark fruits, malts, vanilla, and cream. A little smokey. Overall, an enjoyable arrangement of flavors. Mouthfeel is dry and light, and the flavor radiates well. I wouldn't mind revisiting this one in the future.

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Photo of TwelveOunces
3.15/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bomber poured into a tulip
2012 Vintage

A- A dark amber orange, very clear. One finger of an off white head. Some alcohol legs.

S- A little bourbon, a light spiciness and cinnamon. A slight oak.

T- A little oak and bourbon at front, very light. A big alcohol flavor which is surprising. A slight spice on the tongue. A little hop bitterness. No offensive flavors but not too many great ones either.

M- A light body, and too light for the size of the beer. An strong alcohol feel and burn which is surprising.

O- Quite disappointed. Was expecting much better, especially for the price.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.5/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle pour at the BevMo Holiday Beerfest held at Golden Road Brewing in Los Angeles, CA.

2012 vintage.

Pours a clear dark orange with a foamy orange-tan head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, caramel, wood, and slight bourbon aromas. Taste is much the same with a mild alcohol kick and a woody finish. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is a decent example of barrel aging.

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Photo of brentk56
4.2/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2012 version

Appearance: Pours a clear burnt orange with an inch of foam; rather nice bit of splashy lace

Smell: Toast, caramel, pine, vanilla and a moderate Bourbon aroma

Taste: Caramel and toast, with a developing pine character in the middle; at the same time, the Bourbon and vanilla elements also build; more Bourbon, after the swallow, but the base beer flavors balance out the whiskey; not very boozy, despite the ABV

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Reading through the reviews, I wonder whether the recipe may have changed here as I found this beer to be extremely well-balanced, with a very deft handling of the Bourbon in a way that really complements the base beer

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Photo of JamesShoemaker
3.95/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz 2011 vintage poured out into three regular size wine glasses. Thanks to RyanSchwam for this extra beer in a great trade!

A - pours a dark orange, a little brown, not unlike an English BW. Foam recedes quickly, lingers on the edge.

S - I like the smell, some bourbon notes, woody, sweet, flavorful.

T - also pretty good. I like the fact that it's not quite as sweet as some BBA brews. A little bit of caramel, woody.

M - meh. The carbonation hurts this beer, and maybe the extra age does too. The alcohol is undetectable.

O - a good brew. I'd like to try it on tap.

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Photo of pkalix
4.7/5  rDev +31.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

beautiful clear, caramel color with a nice topping of foam.
citrus aroma, some pine.
caramel front, pine-y hop flavor as it slides past the middle, and clean and refreshing finish. doesnt taste like there is alcohol in here, yet it says 9.4% abv
overall, i really like this. i like this 'alternate' version of the previous brrr i tasted and the bourbon barrel flavor goes hand in hand with the hops and 'pine'. this really is a great brew. however, i am not sure we are all reviwing the same beer, are we? my bottle says '12 and yet the reviews go all the way back to 2010. this appears to be an annual product and i noticed there was an '11 version also. the brewery's website even advertises the '11, but not the '12.... confusion, but who cares? darn fine product in my hands. and since i still dont know if aliens exist, i suppose i can live without knowing whether this review should be for a '12 . . . . but i gave the taste part a 5. this is an awesome job of producing beer. 9.4%....even...

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Photo of kylehay2004
3.81/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Two finger off white head on a hazy amber orange body. Excellent retention and nice lacing. Flavors of vanilla, toasted malts, brown sugar, spices, bourbon, caramel and hints of toffee. Aroma hides under the thick head ad is mostly of candy sugar, dark fruits, orange peel and caramel. Medium body and moderate carbonation. A little oily on the palate. A lot of flavors in this one but for me they do tall come together in the end to form a memorable or great beer.

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Barrel Aged Brrrbon (Brothers' Reserve Series) from Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
3.57 out of 5 based on 579 ratings.
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