Aging Great Lakes Blackout Stout

Discussion in 'Cellaring / Aging Beer' started by VncentLIFE, Feb 27, 2012.

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  1. VncentLIFE

    VncentLIFE Meyvn (1,417) Feb 16, 2011 North Carolina
    Beer Trader

    Im getting a six pack of Blackout at Easter. I had it fresh in December, and will certainly drink a few. My question comes to those who have tried this. My cellar has all but disappeared (minus Siberian night and BCS). Im looking to beef it up with this and my tax return.

    Those of you who have tried aging it, does it age well? Should i even try?
  2. xnicknj

    xnicknj Initiate (0) May 25, 2009 Pennsylvania

    at the BA blackout release last year, they also had a 4 year vertical of regular blackout. we felt that 1 year was probably best, and didnt see much significant improvement from more long term aging. apparently the brewers have mixed opinions themselves on whether or not the beer should be aged, which i guess might have prompted serving the vertical at the release party. i have a couple bottles from last year that im planning on opening soon to see if i have the same reaction.
  3. VncentLIFE

    VncentLIFE Meyvn (1,417) Feb 16, 2011 North Carolina
    Beer Trader

    Thanks. Ill throw one or two in the cellar for shits and giggles.
  4. pest

    pest Disciple (370) Sep 2, 2007 Ohio
    Beer Trader

    Only tried an aged blackout once, at a year it was terrific. I put some down in my cellar this past release to really see how they age.
  5. StoutFest

    StoutFest Initiate (0) Dec 15, 2009 Illinois

    Blackout stout ages well. Once the hops die out other flavors move in. Every year on it will make it taste different. When you do the vertical you can decide exactly how old you like it according to your liking.
  6. pitweasel

    pitweasel Initiate (0) Jun 11, 2007 New York

    Are you sure you're getting a six pack? It's sold in 4s - just in case that has any impact on your plans.

    Personally, I would advise against aging them. Or only put one away, if you're just getting four. I've had many, many bottles that were about a year old, as well as a good number of fresh (1-6 month). I strongly prefer them with a few months, maybe half a year. At a year, it just starts tasting like a good stout. Certainly not bad, but not the beauty that it is when it's a little younger.
    GrindFatherBob likes this.
  7. Kadonny

    Kadonny Meyvn (1,237) Sep 5, 2007 Pennsylvania
    Beer Trader

    I have a few aging from this year, but I'll drink them over the next 9 months or so.

    Funny how GL puts a best by date on the Blackout of like 3 months, interesting.
  8. mjtiernan

    mjtiernan Initiate (0) Feb 15, 2008 New York
    Beer Trader

    I've got a 2010 that I might open this weekend. What should I expect?
  9. GrindFatherBob

    GrindFatherBob Initiate (0) Apr 29, 2010 New York

    In my experience it does not change for the better, even at a year it loses a lot of bold flavors and just gets all muted and deadened. Just my $.02.
  10. headbucket

    headbucket Aspirant (268) Oct 30, 2007 Ohio

    Have had some aged up to a couple years, they seem to get more of a smoky flavor as they age, which I am not too into, so I prefer them fresher
  11. Spider889

    Spider889 Savant (982) Mar 24, 2010 Ohio
    Industry Beer Trader

    This is a very hoppy stout, and is meant to be that way. While not a bad beer when aged it loses all of its distinctive character (esp @ more than a year). At one point (a couple years back) this was the Great Lakes beer with the highest ibu's. I prefer it fresh but would happily drink it up to a year. Then it just becomes a sweet mess.
  12. maximum12

    maximum12 Poo-Bah (3,610) Jan 21, 2008 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    IMHO, this is one of the best straight-up stouts out there. I can't imagine it'll get any better with age, but just for fun I saved a couple of last year's batch, & plan on trying them side-by-side sometime soon. But this is one of those experiments I don't expect to wow me.
  13. smokeypeat

    smokeypeat Initiate (0) Jan 23, 2010 Maryland
    Beer Trader

    Just had this at the 2 year old mark along with Bell's Expedition Stout, and Dark Horse Plead the 5th at roughly the same ages. The Blackout definitely had seemed like it had gone downhill a bit especially compared to the other two. Personally I would drink it fresh to about a year old.
  14. WastingFreetime

    WastingFreetime Meyvn (1,160) Feb 12, 2011 Wisconsin

    I did a cellaring time experiment on this stout once. I got eight bottles and started out sampling a bottle every two months.

    At four months it was at the best it ever got for my personal tastes.
    At eight months it was degraded down to "Just another Stout"
    At ten months it was "A sweet mess" and I decided to abort the rest of the experiment.

    Things change faster in the cellar if you don't actually have a spare fridge. I rely on the steady ambient temperature of a poured concrete basement here in Wisconsin where I live to behave much like a natural cave system. If you use a spare fridge to cellar things colder than I do, than it will most likely progress at a much slower and spread out pace than what I experienced. Also, your personal taste is a subjective thing, YMMV, people like different sort of flavors blah blah blah etcetera.

    Hope this helped!
  15. mikeyv35

    mikeyv35 Zealot (577) Oct 15, 2008 New York
    Beer Trader

    I have have about 14 bottles out of a case of 2008 Blackout Stout I bought and have aged in the cellar. I have drank a few bottles of it in the last year, and IMO it tasted fantastic with 3+ years on it. If anyone is interested in a bottle or two of the 2008 let me know.
  16. BB1313

    BB1313 Poo-Bah (2,540) Jul 16, 2009 Ohio

    I'm a little late to this party, but I personally feel Blackout Stout is best fresh, like alot of people have already mentioned.. '12 BA Blackout is a different story. But I personally feel age doesn't really improve this one because it loses what makes it great. But yeah you can throw one in the cellar just to see what you think..
  17. Devi0us

    Devi0us Initiate (0) May 3, 2011 California

    Yeah, I think the 2012 BA Blackout could use a little time in the cellar. I had one a few days ago and I thought it was a little hot...I'm interested in seeing what time will do to this beer...

  18. bluntedboywonder

    bluntedboywonder Initiate (0) Apr 30, 2008 New York

    Had a 2yr old lastnight . It was very disappointing. Almost a drain pour. And I never do that. This is one beer better fresh or within 6 months
  19. Bonis

    Bonis Defender (630) Jul 28, 2010 Ohio

    Drinking a 2011 and 2012 side by side right now. Can't say I for sure prefer one over the other, but the one year has a more distinct velvet sweet chocolate taste with metallic notes (think it may be falling off at this point) and the fresh still has a nice hop balance. I don't think I will age it any more than a year. It doesn't seem to hold up as well as Expedition, Founders Imp Stout, or Plead the 5th, but it is a worthy stout to age a year or so.

    That being said, this thread is revived after about 10 months.

    OP, if you are still out there, did you end up aging any of this? Buy some fresh and see how they compare for yourself!
  20. Gotti311

    Gotti311 Crusader (771) Mar 22, 2009 Wisconsin
    Beer Trader

    Awesome advice. I have a bottle of this in my cellar. Will make sure to enjoy next year and no later.
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