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Review by SAP on 09/07/09  
 
Score Appearance Smell Taste Mouthfeel Overall Impression Year
86 3 11 17 4 8 2005
Sampled April, 2006
Pours with a frothy, amber tan colored head that starts out about two and a half finger-widths in thickness. It slowly dissipates leaving a light frothy lacing on the side of my tulip glass. The beer is an opaque, dark brown color that shows a murky, reddish amber color when held up to the light. The aroma smells quite fruity as I pour this beer into my glass; notes of sweet plums, raisins, some definite fig notes, and a distinct fruity note that reminds me of something like quince paste. Interestingly enough when I go in for a deep draught of the aroma these fruit aromatics are much muted. Instead I get tart notes of tamarind, some funky Brettanomyces notes, as well as a light acidity. The sharp Brett character seems to be the dominant note in the nose, but underneath it all is an austere, dry, toasty malt character.

The beer is lightly sweet up front and has a creamy mouthfeel to it that just coats the palate. There is some sharp, almost astringent character here that helps to balance the sweetness; it is a mix of sharp, funky Brettanomyces character, and what I would guess is some woody oak notes. The sweetness is complimented by a light, tart sour note that seems to also accentuate the fruit character. The fruit notes remind me of a sweet yet tart plum, some definite rich raisin notes, and a definite, though only a hint of, tamarind. There is quit a bit of malt character in this beer as well, notes of chocolate, caramel, toasted grain, and perhaps a hint of espresso character make for another interesting dimensionality. Somewhere around the middle of a taste of this beer ones starts to pick up a citrus note of sweet orange. There is also a bit more spice character to this beer; lots of spicy yeast notes and perhaps some actual spices as well add up to a not overwhelming character, but one which as a whole is quite apparent, yet well integrates.

This is quite the tasty tipple, it is a bit rich and satisfying, with lots of malt character to round things out. The balance that this beer has is what really sets this beer apart; all of the flavors just integrate so well, with none dominating over the other. The mix of funky Brett character, light tartness, sweet malt, fruit notes, and integrated spicing just works so well here.

Served In: Tulip