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Jonathan Reed
Jonathan Reed

Ba Stout

"For our version of Black is Beautiful we adjusted some of the malts to match our house stouts. We then took a portion of it to age in a single Sour Mash Willett Bourbon barrel and aged it for 9 months. Pours jet black with aroma and flavors of chocolate, vanilla, raisin and bourbon."

Ba Stout

Our imperial breakfast stout fermented with a ridiculous amount of maple syrup and conditioned on whole-bean Sumatra from Clutch Coffee. Aged in Heaven Hill, Woodford Reserve, and Bull Run bourbon barrels.

Holy Mountain produces a variety of beer styles and excels at it but one of their biggest releases of the year is the annual release of Midnight Still. The approach is like the brewery itself, exploratory but true to the roots of the style. These stouts are thick but not THICC, full of flavor from the barrel, often Kentucky bourbon, and just a hint of sweetness. These are not pastry stouts even when the variants are released, in years past the adjuncts have included hazelnut, vanilla, coffee, cardamom and even nutmeg, cinnamon and clove.

In a state, Illinois, known for barrel-aged stouts Phase Three Brewing has found its niche in thoughtful adjuncts. The Eunoias series has showcased toasted marshmallow, peanut butter, Saigon cinnamon, maple, hazelnuts, bananas and even Stroopwafel cookies just to name a few. While the beers can lean towards the sweeter side, they are balanced out with hints of bourbon from the barrel creating a delightful treat with each sip.

Talking about Cigar City while only mentioning The Bruery and Cycle in passing is just wrong. No one mentioned in this article does more variety and makes more interesting BA stouts than The Bruery. Black Tuesday, anyone?

This beer taught us that patience truly is a virtue. KBS is a big imperial stout brewed with a massive amount of coffee and chocolate and then bourbon barrel-aged to perfection. Incredibly silky and full-bodied with notes of vanilla, cocoa, roasted coffee and charred oak.

Aged for six months in bourbon barrels, this luxurious stout has a deep ebony hue and a beautiful mahogany head. The woody, vanilla-like notes imparted by the barrels mingle with aromas of fresh baked bread, toffee, and espresso and envelop the rich chocolate and roasted barley flavors with a fine bourbon character. With an exceptional balance and drinkability this beer is the closest thing to an every-day bourbon barrel aged stout the world has ever seen.

Sit back and let us tell you a story. A story of a rich, dark stout that found its way into brandy barrels, and eventually into our signature 1.5 L Magnum bottles. The story of this unique brew is really two stories: the story of the barrels and the story of the stout.

The beer part of the story begins in 2013 with the release of Flying Cloud San Francisco Stout as the third beer in the limited edition Zymaster Series. Named after a record-setting clipper ship, this deep, dark, rich, creamy export stout was brewed as a tribute to the stouts that came around Cape Horn to California for thirsty early settlers.

During this time, we were also aging other beers in used Old Potrero Whiskey barrels that would eventually be blended to create our Anchor Barrel Ale, another beer in the Anchor Argonaut Collection. When we tasted the stout aging in the brandy barrels, we knew they were exceptional. We decided not to incorporate this beer into the Anchor Barrel Ale, allowing it to age even longer. This spring, when the barrels hit the one year mark, we tasted them again.

The beer is a deep, rich, jet-black, velvety smooth stout that weighs in at 9.7% ABV. It has a reddish mahogany head on top of an onyx glass of goodness. The tasting experience begins with aromas of very ripe apples, cherries, and chocolate malt with a hint of oak & smokiness. It tastes a bit boozy, but mellows out nicely with a chocolate & molasses silkiness that balances out into a long slow warming glow.

A double dose of vanilla derived from both fresh Bourbon barrels and the trio of Tongan, Ugandan, and Mexican whole vanilla beans is complemented by essences of chocolate, caramel and molasses to round out this luxuriously silky stout.

Revolution has been releasing an annual stout since 2013. 2017 marked the first time Revolution packaged variants other than the coffee-flavored Café Deth. They started turning heads with their barrel-aged Imperial Oatmeal Stout in 2017.

Barclay Brewing Co. has operated in relative anonymity. For the past few years, Brian Barclay would field messages from craft beer fans, asking if he would sell or trade his homebrewed barrel-aged stouts. This past year, Brian had the opportunity to brew at scale, opting to go the nomadic brewing route using Ellison Brewing and Spirits in East Lansing, MI.

2021 Matryoshka was aged for one year in a blend of Buffalo Trace Bourbon and Westward Whiskey barrels. This barrel aged stout is an exercise in balance and intensity, full of bold flavors such as vanilla, anise, chocolate, coffee, and charred oak, all integrating seamlessly. The high gravity and robust mouthfeel give the beer heft and substance, while remaining smooth and deceivingly drinkable. 041b061a72


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