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Beer Reviews

B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher

Hoppin’ Frog Brewery
Akron, OH

Style: Imperial Stout

Eddie’s Rating:
one beerone beerone beerone beerone beer   (Outstanding within its style.)

“Ladies and uh-gentlemen! A wrestling contest for the world’s heavy weight uh-championship! Introducing the world’s heavy weight champion … The Crusher!”
Bunny Hugged, 1951 Looney Tunes short.

Even though there is a frog painted on the front of the bomber of this beer, his name isn’t Boris, as far as I know. There’s a frog on every bottle of Hoppin’ Frog beer, and Boris is actually an acronym for Bodacious Oatmeal Russian Imperial Stout. Tonight I’ll get to the bottom of how bodacious it really is, although it did win a gold medal this past Great American Beer Festival in the imperial stout category. So let’s get this thing started.

The pour is pretty much used engine oil: viscous and black, with a brown, goopy but short-lived head. Hmmm. Expecting a bigger, bad-asser foam dome for a brew that’s got oatmeal right in the title. Or, I guess, the acronym in this case. The aroma is big time malt, plums and figs, dark chocolate, and some coffee notes. Let’s go in for the sip …

Deep, deep roasty malt at the fore mingles with dark fruit tones amid a slick and smooth mouthfeel—that’s where those oats come in. The body is not huge, nowhere near what some imperial stouts put out there. The roastiness rises out of the fruit notes to provide a dry, biscuity middle before a long, sweet, toffee-lined finish. That finish is relatively clean for such a malty brew, making this Russian imperial stout nice and drinkable.

Bodacious means admirably audacious, and although B.O.R.I.S. The Crusher is admirable, I wouldn’t quite call it audacious—we’ll save that for crazier beers. It is, however, a great imperial stout, and an ideal brew to sit back and sip on a long winter’s night—or even toast the new year with. Besides, who gives a rat’s fuck about champagne?

Reviewed by Eddie Glick on December 31, 2008.
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