FlacoAlto (3737) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - FEB 2, 2013
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
A steady pour into my Teku glass produces a three finger thick, nicely brown tinged head. The beer is a rich, concentrated brown / almost-black color that shows opaque depths, but clear, ruby-amber hues around the edges when held up to the light. Sweet, rich notes of smooth dark chocolate, caramelized blackened malt, candied caramel malt, and candied brown sugar encrusted nuts. Hints of warm alcohol melds with the caramel character to produce something like a brandy character here in the nose. Touches of burnt / roast character provides some firm, not quite sharp aromatics towards the finish. Once I noticed the oak in the flavor, I get a toasted character that accentuates the malt character but is distinctly oak induced.
Not quite as sweet up front as the beer smelled, but it picks up more sweetness in the middle and finish. It has a smooth, caramelized and fruit sweetness to it as well as a rounded, accentuating, vanilla note that clings to the palate in the finish. There is a spiciness here in the finish that is light, but had me wondering if this was aged with oak, and apparently there was some used in the recipe. The oak is nice and light, not very woody, but more rounded and slightly spicy, and really serves to boost the complexity more than intrude on the other flavors here. Rounded chocolate notes, a rich nuttiness (that comes out more as the beer warms up).
This was a complicated recipe, with cherries, vanilla, and oak, but luckily things are kept very well balanced here. The vanilla is the most noticeable of the “adjuncts” used, but it still kept at a nicely accentuating level here rather than playing a central role. A bit simplistic perhaps, but quite well integrated, if a touch sweet; it could use more richness and balancing complexity, but really is quite enjoyable in the end.
dhunter151 (451) - Santa Rosa, California, USA - JAN 28, 2013
4.2 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours jet black. Tastes of vanilla and coffee with a hint of cherry. Warming alcohol on the finish.
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone
rxeight (994) - Illinois, USA - JAN 13, 2013
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bomber into stout glass. Black pour no head. Aroma is almost like a subtile bourbon county. Oak cherries vanilla almost bourbon like. Touch or malt. Everything mixes well together. Taste is somewhat sweet. But not overpowering. Thicker than average. Very good stuff.
baraciisch (1505) - USA - JAN 3, 2013
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Deep black in color with mahogany reddish head... Aroma of black cherries and malts... Flavor is smooth, vanilla up front but dominated by chocolate malts and cherries... Delicious
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone
michaelinwa (551) - Bothell, Washington, USA - DEC 27, 2012
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Black pour, average head, aroma of malt with a little chocolate, coffee and vanilla. Flavor matches the aroma, with chocolate being the main flavor. After that there is coffee and just a bit of vanilla. Tasty brew, but maybe a little over done with the flavors.
crajun (874) - , Texas, USA - DEC 26, 2012
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
600th RATING!! one of my favorite breweries and my favorite style - lots of aroma here - cherry and vanilla with some roasted malt and slight alcohol. Cherry and vanilla are faint in flavor; nice palate. avail. in TX now so this will be a staple...
k9coug (99) - USA - DEC 23, 2012
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
I’m probably letting the style dictate my rating, as I am not a fan of licorice or the sweetness that overwhelms this beer, but it probably is OK for the style. Is this what "dark fruits" taste like?
Terminus (3092) - Las Cruces, New Mexico, USA - DEC 22, 2012
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
2012 bottle-December 2012-pours very dark brown almost black with a nice fizzy tan head to start, but fades away fast leaving a very small kacki head around the rim of the glass. nose is sweet-lots of vanilla, oak, milk chocolate, and some dark fruit in there. flavors exhibit the chocolate, dark fruits and vanilla aspects however, it tends to be quite sweet. With that said, for the style, sweetness isnt a bad thing. alcohol is detected, but the sweetness masques it pretty well. long roasty sweet finish with lingering wood/oak/vanilla beans. Very well put together beer here!
bluejacket74 (1186) - Reynoldsburg, Ohio, USA - DEC 13, 2012
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
22 ounce bottle, 2012 vintage. Served in a nonic pint glass, the beer pours dark brown/black with about a half inch tan head that stayed around a while. There’s a small amount of lacing. Aroma is nice, the brew smells like dark fruit (cherries), caramel, vanilla, coffee, brown sugar and some oak. I think the taste is pretty much like the aroma, but with the addition of some roasted malt and molasses. There’s also some bitterness in the finish, but overall there’s a good mix between the sweet and bitter flavors. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it’s slick and a bit creamy with moderate carbonation. I think it’s a good brew, I’d like to try it again in the future. Definitely worth trying!
CHUDNW (28) - Seattle, Washington, USA - DEC 11, 2012
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Pours pitch black with a modest head. Head quickly dissipates. Cherries, Cocoa/Coffee, Vanilla/Barrel scents. Taste brings bigger cherries, dark roasted malt, chocolate, booze, lingering caramel. Goes down with booze burn and more carbonation than head implies. BALTIC BUZZ