Nov 9, 2011

Odell Brewing Bourbon Barrel Stout

Odell Bourbon Barrel Stout photo

Any one who spends five minutes on this site will undoubtedly run into a post where I proclaim my love for all things stout with a fanatical devotion. So any time I get the opportunity to sample a beer of that style, my insides are just waiting to burst out with excitement. It was all I could do to contain myself when this sample of Bourbon Barrel Stout arrived from Odell Brewing Company a couple of weeks ago.

I wanted to tear into the bottle the moment it arrived, but I decided to hold off a few days and crack it open a few days later to commemorate the first International Stout Day on November 3rd. The bottle taunted me for several days, but I my resolve remained strong until I finally allowed myself to open it up. It was worth the torture.

Odell Brewing takes a solid Imperial Stout and ages it for four months in Kentucky bourbon barrels (which brand, I’m not aware of) before shipping it out. The end result of that time is a big beer with hints of bourbon, wood, vanilla, coffee and chocolate — everything you want in a beer of this nature.


The beer pours a near-black, dark brown with a large, dense mocha head.


It certainly smells the part as healthy doses of woody scents, bourbon, dark chocolate and a hint of roasted coffee fill the nose.


Now this is a tasty brew. The level of bourbon is just right, sitting at a moderate level that isn’t distracting to the palate nor so faint that you struggle to pick it up. It mingles nicely with hints of oak and vanilla while the dark chocolate and roast coffee come forward toward the back end of each swallow. The beer is smooth on the tongue with a full mouthfeel and is deceptively drinkable considering it’s 11.5% ABV.


I usually don’t have to look to hard to find something in any stout to like, but Odell Brewing’s latest Bourbon Barrel Stout release makes it so I don’t even have to look all that hard. The brew isn’t perfect, but it’s pretty darn close with all of the tasty elements that I personally love in a big beer like this.

Rating: 4.5/5

This is a review of a promotional sample received from the brewery.

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