Snifter glass filled with beer next to a bottle of Central Waters Brewing Nineteen sitting on a table.

Central Waters Brewing makes some of the very best barrel-aged imperial stouts in the world. for their 19th anniversary they blended some of their very best and after some years in the cellar, here’s how Central Waters Nineteen is tasting.


Tickets to their anniversary party sell out in seconds but I’d managed to secure one. As the date grew closer I decided not to make the 200-mile trek. I popped onto social media to find a friend who had just posted asking if anyone could get him a bottle of their annual anniversary release. I happily hooked him up with my ticket, happy that someone would be able to enjoy the party in my absence.

A week later, this bottle of their 19th-anniversary brew and the glass (originally filled with candle wax) showed up on my doorstep. Wonderful memories of spending their 13th anniversary hanging out with him at the brewery and staying at the Bates Motel down the road (along with drinking half a crowler of their 13th anniversary sour brown ale myself when we got back there) certainly come to mind when enjoying this great gift.

Pours a thick jet black and a small deep brown head bubbles to the top. The head fizzes away and leaves a ring of brown around the edge of the snifter along with a bit of foam floating.

Nose into it and huge notes of bourbon are most prominent. Rich chocolate, notes of vanilla, oak, and light toffee. There’s also a distant note of non-bitter coffee.

Thick, smooth, and silky this big brew slides across the tongue with a bit of carbonation fizzle on the tastebuds.

Huge chocolate malt and roasted malt with a hint of coffee come up first. Just a touch of caramel mixes with vanilla and a hint of oak.

As we head into the aftertaste the bourbon comes through nicely and balances the sweetness as things dry out.

On the first sip, there was a hint of oxidation, though I’m generally very sensitive to such. After sitting a few minutes and a couple of sips, it’s no longer noticeable. Not surprising from a beer that’s been in the cellar for over 4 years.

Celebrating Great Beer

Awesome beer is made even better when there’s a special story or memory attached. Science has shown that beer (and food or wine) enjoyment is impacted by the larger experience of where and how we have it. This one is certainly a great brew that comes with great memories.

Pop into the cellar and enjoy something that brings about a wonderful connection to not only the beer but also the story that goes with it. Even the most basic of brews become the best of brews when paired with an amazing experience.