Sampled on tap at the First Annual Stone Sour Fest, July 2007
This has only a dusting of a head, appears to have a very low carbonation. The beer is a chocolate to black color. This definitely smells like a stout, notes of coffee, chocolate and a rich-blackened, concentrated malty character. Underneath the dominant roast driven aromatics is a solid fruitiness of blackened plums & raisins moving towards an almost brandy or rum like note that seems to accent some oak barrel character. Dusty cocoa aromatics are noticeable in the nose as well, but this is really fruity smelling at times. In fact I get a pronounced blackberry note that is so distinct it almost seems like some of them have been added.
The taste is quite fruity up front, yet it still maintains quite a dry character overall. The fruitiness is defined by a distinct blackberry flavor that becomes tart and roasted in the middle through to the finish. The pronounced blackberry note comes through in the finish again and lingers long after the beer has left my mouth. The beer is fairly light feeling in the mouth, but it is still rich and almost chewy, which is quite good for a soured beer (or is that the color that makes me think it is rich; I don't think that is the entire story though). The blackberry note is so pronounced, I almost wonder are these actually somehow involved (what was in the barrel, hell what type of barrel was it). Oaky barrel notes are also noticeable (mostly in the finish); spicy wood notes, a touch of buttery oak, an austere tannic palate coating character. The stout flavors here are definitely noticeable, but not dominantly so; a roast acidity and a character of a smooth, first pull espresso are definitely noticed, but the Stout character is more apparent in the aroma than in the flavor.
The barrel for this beer must have had something in it prior to this beer (Brandy, or more likely some berry like red wine). The blackberry note I have been talking about is not the dominant character here, but it adds such an intriguing accent that is just so apparent. This is very good, much better than I was expecting. I really like how rich this beer is, yet it is still quite quaffable & I really like how this beer melds all of the interesting flavor components.
There are no reviews for this beer yet. Login and be the first to review it!