mgumby10 (1856) - Jupiter, Florida, USA - OCT 25, 2007
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
#1000!!!! Beer God finally! This beer is courtesy boboski, which is fitting, considering he is the person who really got me into craft beer and probably almost half my rates have come from him. His overwhelming generosity and willingness to share rare beers, even when he gave up alot to get them is second to none. Thanks again Jason, and everybody else who has shared beers with me, even the 2-3 years or so before I started entering rates seriously. Now to the beer. From one of my favorite breweries, and one Iíve been wanting to try forever. 2005, bottle 16 of 222. This poured a deep, cloudy, almost murky, dark brownish maroon, with a very small, bubbly light tan head. The bubbles hugged the egdes of the glass and left small swirls on the cap. Big caramel, bourbon, toffee, some dark fruit, and roasted malts all come together to form an enticing aroma that just sticks in the nose. The bourbon certainly isnt overpowering and seems to be somewhat balanced well with the other aromas. Canít wait to try a sip. The flavor is lightly carbonated, almost certainly from the barrel aging, but still enough to give the mouthfeel some tingle. The bourbon is quite pronounced in the flavor, moreso than in the nose. Huge caramel characters, some vanilla, maybe a little oak, and light chocolate all seem to tag-team with the bourbon. The finish is a little bit roasty and very full-bodied. The aftertaste has a light little bitterness to it, with a big bourbon presence and a lot of caramel and vanilla flavors as well. This beer was pretty much what I was expecting, and it certainly didnít disappoint. Thanks again to Jason for sharing this rairty!! Youíre my hero.
wetherel (1836) - Encinitas, California, USA - OCT 12, 2007
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: JAN 5, 2008 2005 bottle #14/222 bought at the brewery. Tasted at Churchillís with Ivan, Tim, Aaron, and Dave. Aroma just hits you when you first smell it. Super perfect oxidation. I love this level of oxidation. Low level of carbonation. Sweet buttery caramels, probably from the oak. Melanoidin in your face too. Maybe a little bit of smoke. Very nice.
3 days later, there is 1" left in the bottle in my frig. Bourbon is a little over present in the taste and aroma. It took me a little to recognize what I was smelling. At a tasting, things are rushed, so rating details are left out. You get even a little of bourbon burn on the tongue, which is unusual at 9.5%. Iím bringing the palate and overall down a notch, lowering the rating to 4.4.
Tried again at fordestís tasting with ibrew2or3, fordest, papajohn, toncatcher, and others. 9,4,8,4,18: Same rating, but I seemed to enjoy it more this time.
crizay (1050) - Brook Park, Ohio, USA - OCT 9, 2007
4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Thanks to my boy Bruce Willis for this í07 bottle. Dark brown pour, barely any head. Aroma is huge bourbon all the way bigtime. Flavor is a bourbon coconut sweetness I donít know why but thatís what I get. The barrel-aging really has covered up most of the smokiness and rich flavors from the regular wee heavy. Some roasted malt and caramel sweetness come through but then thereís more coconut.
BrockLanders (779) - Panama City, Florida, USA - OCT 9, 2007
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Huge thanks to our version of Frank the Tank for dragging this back from his stay in SoCal. Deep dark red pour...somewhat hazy and zero head to this one. Sweet malty aroma...toffee, caramel, and a wee bit of alcohol too. Full bodied brew...pleasingly tart with lotsa dried dark fruits, raisins, plums. Woody, rummy, and bourbony...whew....big taste bomb. Lightly bitter in the end..if at all. Great stuff....doubt Iíll ever see another bottle, but that will just make this one more special.
FoolishMortal (990) - San Diego, California, USA - OCT 4, 2007
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
2005 vintage. Murky dark orange-brown with little to no head. Chocolate, dark alefruit, caramel, vanilla, and alcohol heat in the aroma. Heavy oak and vanillin up front. Chocolate, raisins, slight smoke. Higher alcohol notes with syrupy malt. Rusty nuttiness, semisweet chocolate notes in the finish. Mouthfeel is heavy, rich, with some alcohol heat.
badlizard (5535) - Berkeley, California, USA - OCT 2, 2007
4.9 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
2005 vintage bottle #98/222 from Alesmith brewery. Dark mahogany brown with garnet highlights around the edge and absolutely no head. Big caramel, chocolate, and whiskey aroma. Thick velvet mouthfeel. Initial taste of smooth yet oddly crisp wood, transitioning to a chocolate and caramel taste, which is immediately replaced by the bourbon and vanilla tastes and finishes with a tobacco and spice taste intermingled with a nice alcoholic sweetness. Excellent.
Naven (1000) - Poway, California, USA - SEP 30, 2007
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Rating #500. 2005 vintage.. Drank this with four friends on the beach at San Onofre State Beach. Annual dudes camping trip.
Anyway, this beer was a definite highlight. We all agreed that it was fantastic. Well, everyone but my friend Drum, who happens to work for Anheuser Busch and thinks Natural Light is a "Damn fine beer." Even he admitted it was good. As with all of the BA Alesmith beers I have had, the Bourbon is definitely the star, and is very prominent. I have read others complain about this, but I happen to love the fact that the bourbon is so noticeable. The wood balances things out rather nicely and the smooth velvety mouthfeel makes this a really nice sipper. We all agreed that there is an interesting Coconut finish that is just fantastic. This is a world class beer in my opinion and it really was a treat to have consumed.
Skyview (5282) - Papoose Jct, Minnesota, USA - SEP 9, 2007
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
A 2004 vintage bottle (220 out of 234), shared by Guerde and Olso2116. Pours a brownish amber brew with a very fast dissolving tan head that comes clean with a very thin film on top. No lacing or ring in this glass. Aroma of dark caramel malt, plenty of bourbon, coconut, and some vanilla. Taste is medium to full bodied, very light carbonation with flavors of coconut, bourbon, some caramel malt and plenty of alcohol. Finish is smooth and creamy with a coconut/bourbon aftertaste that really sticks around. A pleasant brew to share and experience!
akevitt (97) - Valhalla, Minnesota, USA - SEP 7, 2007
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Thanks to olso2116 for sharing! Bottle number 220/234. It has a brown color and smells like bourbon. Fine bourbon, sweet caramel malt, and coconut dominate the flavor. Not too sweet like some other bourbon beers.
badgerben (4549) - Blaine, Minnesota, USA - SEP 4, 2007
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle #220. Thanks to Guerde and Olso2116! These guys just keep bringing the great stuff! Murky brown color with a thin head. Big bourbon aroma, but not like sniffing an actual glass of bourbon. Tastes very much like it has a lot of Knob Creek in it. A fair amount of smoke with a powerfully sweet malt finish. Very good, but I think I like the un-aged one a bit better.