This titanic, immensely viscous stout is loaded with inimitable flavors of chocolate-covered caramel and coffee and hide a hefty 65 IBUs underneath the smooth blanket of malt. It is made with enormous amounts of two-row malt, chocolate malt, roasted barley, flaked oats and hops.
Barrel Aged Ten Fidy
Aged through four seasons and from a blend of the top Bourbons around, this Ten Fidy has morphed into a monster of cranked up flavor. Espresso, burnt sugar, rich chocolate, caramel notes are now driving alongside the vanilla, oak, bourbon from the barrel and been smoothed out during maturation. Even at 12.9% (75 IBUs) it is cool and drinkable, letting each sip add more and more complexity.
|Aroma - Ten Fidy
It's as much chocolate as it is roasted. There's a bit of coffee, some caramel and some brown sugar as well. It's generally sweet which is expected when you have an ABV this high and it's also got a bit of spiciness to it as well which I can only assume come from the hops. The oats show up just slightly which excites you for what they add to the mouthfeel later on.
|Aroma - BA Ten Fidy
Very big caramel and molasses along with chocolate syrup. This beer even smells thick. There is some boozines from the bourbon and it brings along with it some sweetness. Roasted coffee is the other big piece of this puzzle and there's even a bit of smokiness to it and some vanilla sneaks in right at the end. It's got a lot going on and I haven't even taken my first sip.
|Appearance - Ten Fidy
The beer pours motor oil black with a dense, brown head that creates incredibly sticky lacing.
|Appearance - BA Ten Fidy
The barrel aged version mimics the dense, black color of the regular although it does have a slighty more frothy and slight darker brown head that caps it.
|Flavor - Ten Fidy
That spice from the aroma was definitely from the hops. Don't be fooled by the ABV or style, the hops are here to give the malts a run for their money. The malts are every bit of chocolate, coffee, roast, and brown sugar that you expect them to be. While caramel is in play, it's not at the forefront and doesn't show up big. The balance is very nice and while the alcohol warms as you swallow, you can't necessarily taste it.
|Flavor - BA Ten Fidy
Huge, huge, huge, bourbon charater. Insane flavor without a lot of booze behind it which is nice. The barrel gives it just a bit of oak but a lot of vanilla, burnt sugar, and rich caramel. There's a bit of spiciness in this one too but it comes more from the bourbon than the hops as far as I can tell. The vanilla and caramel also evoke a toasted marshmallow and beyond that the alcohol makes itself much more known here than in the regular version of the beer. With how much is going on with this beer, it's undeniably balaned toward the sweeter side but the bourbon tries to balance it out and almost does the job.
|Mouthfeel - Ten Fidy
The body is full and the carbonation is medium or just a little above medium. It's dense and coats your tongue but the carbonation is just big enough to take some of the heft with it when you swallow.
|Mouthfeel - BA Ten Fidy
The carbonation is medium+ and the body is full. The mouthfeel may actually be just a bit thinner than the regular version but it's quite hard to tell a big difference.
I can't even pretend that I'm not a geek about barrel aged beers. If you've been paying even slight attention the blog for even a short amount of time, you'll know that. So it goes without saying that the barrel aged version wins in my book but I'm pretty sure all of the world would agree with me. I've purchased Ten Fidy multiple, multiple times. As a shelf beer, it's a phenomenal Imperial Stout. With this BA version, it's a whole new level. It was hard to come by (I actually had to win a local lottery to get my can) and this is one of those beers where the rarity isn't the sole reason for it's hype. It's damn good. Oskar Blues only came to us in MO earlier this year and if they keep having a winning record like this, they'll keep getting my money for a long, long time.