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Review by Dr. Rockzo on 11/08/09  
 
Score Appearance Smell Taste Mouthfeel Overall Impression Year
82 2 10 16 5 8 0
Big thanks to merfdawg for this amazing hookup. Poured from a classy paper wrapped corked/caged 375mL bottle into a Darkness snifter. 10% ABV according to the label.

A: Pours out a very hazy (with floaters) coppery/dark-amber/ruddy-red color with plum-like highlights when held to a light source. A modest 1 finger layer of light-tan foam builds up to a head slowly and recedes into a thin ring around the edge almost as fast. Very faint spots of lace are left on the glass, but not much. I really love the color and glow of it.

S: The smell is immediately quite deep and complex on the first whiff, but not really what I was expecting. Sweet and nutty maple syrup, toasted brown sugar, and some butterscotch intermingle with mild wet-rock/mineraly Allagash strain brett and just a hint of redwine vinous acidity and lacto tartness. Plenty of oaky/woody tannins and a touch of vanilla and spice to the mixture too towards the back. Great depth and mixtures of aromas that blend together quite well.

T: The taste is not quite as impressive as the nose and quite different for such a wild ale. It quickly starts puckering and tart/sour notes of wild critters but the mapley and nutty-brownsugar sweetness comes in with balance midpalate. A touch butterscotchy in there as well with notes of redwine grape fruitiness. Spicy/vanilla oak tannins are moderately strong. A light vinous acidity is also present.

M: The mouthfeel is on the higher side of medium bodied with a near perfect feeling bubbly but soft carbonation. The consistency is coating and soft/velvety with a touch of a puckering bite on the sides of the tongue that mellows nicely after each sip. It’s amazing to me that it’s 10% as there’s no trace of that in the flavor or feel and fthe finish is smooth and refreshing for a wild ale.

D: Very impressive stuff. Not quite up to snuff with Gargamel but very interesting with it’s mapley sweetness. The rarity makes it hard to drink quickly…I just want to savor it so slowly unti the last drop. The higher ABV is lending a nice buzz to the equation as well. Would love to drink this again down the line a year or two to see how it develops further.

Served In: Tulip