Epic Brewing, located in Salt Lake City, Utah really put itself on the map with its release of Big Bad Baptist. It has become their flagship beer and is a whiskey barrel-aged imperial stout aged on coffee and cacao nibs.

In 2016 Epic took the base of the beer and decided to go in the direction of a Mexican coffee. Batch numero uno was done with cinnamon, vanilla, Solstace cacao nibs and Blue Copper Mexican coffee. There have been 14 total releases, but they only have 11 batches listed so far.

The one I’m reviewing today is number, brewed on Sept. 23, 2015 and packaged on Dec. 8, 2016; it has the same exact recipe as the first. There are, however, two variations of number four releases, the one I’m reviewing is 12.5 percent ABV and the other was brewed July 11, 2017 packaged Oct. 26 2017 and is 11.5 percent ABV.

It doesn’t appear that any of the releases have varied from the original recipe according to Epic’s website and description of each release.

The beer pours black as night, with about a finger of khaki head and just a little bit of lacing that clings to the outside of the glass. It’s a very smooth and silky looking beer with big carbonation bubbles.

I get a huge wave of brownie batter, lot’s of chocolate. It’s backed up with a good amount of coffee and cinnamon and as I take deeper breaths there is barrel and whiskey notes as well. It would appear all the suspects are present and accounted for and the nose is balanced really well. Each whiff produces different dominant notes with nothing consistently stand out.

This thing is silky smooth, almost no carbonation and goes down very easily. Initial taste is coffee and chocolate that gives way to strong cinnamon, which I’m surprised has hung on for so long given the age of the beer. Big Bad Baptista finishes with the tiniest bit of whiskey burn and oak. It is really smooth and has a clean roasted coffee finish that is really nice.

Epic Big Bad Baptista (2016)
BREWERY: Epic Brewing Co.
LOCATION: Salt Lake City, Utah
STYLE: Imperial Stout
ABV: 12.5 percent
IBU: n/a
PRICE: $14.99
RELEASE DATE: Dec. 8, 2016
AVAILABLE IN: 22-ounce bottles
Overall, Big Bad Baptista has held up phenomenally well, I’d say the vanilla has melded into some of the milk chocolate tones as it doesn’t really hit me up front on either the nose or in the taste. I’m really impressed by the balance though, the general consensus on adjunct stouts is these flavors fade, but this one has held up particularly well. I’d recommend checking out a bottle if given the opportunity.
89Overall Score
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