Swell Brewery Winter Sessions, Double Black Diamond & Getting Barrelled '23

Foreign Extra Stout, Imperial Stout & BA Imperial Stout
5.9% & 10.6% & 11.6%

When Swell start to delve into dark territory, they don’t do it by halves. And that’s no different in winter 2023 as they release three stouts at once. So let’s start with the smallest of the three, a foreign extra stout, shall we?

Winter Sessions might be the easiest drinking of the three but doesn’t compromise when it comes to roasty flavours. On the nose, there is roast in decent amounts, plus a touch of smokiness and even a smidge of grassiness. Joining them to taste is a little wattle seed nuttiness, which makes for an interesting mix, with the bitterness giving the beer something of a black IPA vibe too.

If you’re a loyal fan of Swell, you’ll have tasted past Double Diamond Black releases. With the 2023 vintage, first impression is the thick, slick and oily mouthfeel that carries a good whack of tar, dark espresso, dark dried fruits, bitter chocolate and some solid roast character in a beer that has a touch of sweetness. The carbonation is on the lower side, complete with a hint of nitro and a roasty bitterness.

And finally, the big – well, even bigger – one: an 11.6 percent ABV monster bourbon barrel-aged stout that’s soaked up the best parts of the Heaven Hill barrels in which it rested. Getting Barrelled pours jet black and boasts the same thick, slick, oily mouthfeel of the base beer, but with a more textural palate. Sweet bourbon is the main event here, shining atop the savoury roastiness, a fair hit of oak and little vanilla. The tar flavours from the imperial stout work nicely with the sweet bourbon, making this year’s iteration a welcome follow up to its well-received forebears.

Matt King

Published June 15, 2023

Swell Brewery & Taphouse

168 Olivers Road
McLaren Vale
SA 5171

(08) 8323 0879
Open Hours

Weekends only during COVID-19
11am to 6pm

CBCo Goldy
Black Bad Boy Bao 2024 B

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