radagast83 (3752) - Fairfax, Virginia, USA - NOV 21, 2009
2.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 8/20
I donít know if there was something wrong with the bottle, but it just wasnít that good. Pour was promising, with a nice ceamy brown color and a slightly tan head. It was all downhill from there, notes of sour and sweetness powered the aroma, with flavors that followed in that same line. Could have been a bad bottle.
FlacoAlto (3676) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - OCT 24, 2009
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
A solid pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces a three-finger thick, nicely browned, dark tan colored head. The beer is a dark brown color that shows a deep, brilliantly clear, richly ruby hued color when held up to the light. The aroma is quite fruity smelling; it is mostly hop derived but some malt seems to accentuate the fruit character too. There is a distinct currant aroma here that mixes with notes of candied orange zest, concentrated tangerine, and a bright (almost blindingly so at times) berry character. All of this is anchored by a toasted malt character that contributes notes of caramelized grain sugars (which definitely boosts the fruit notes), browned whole-grain cracker aromatics, deeply browned & sharp smelling bread crust notes and biscuit driven malt. The nose of this beer has a nice mix of dominant hop character with a quite noticeable, yet supporting rich malt character.
The rich berry notes continue in the flavor; dark, caramelized grain notes really seem to accentuate this side of the hops. The hops are still dominant in the flavor, but there is a lot of malt here that is just tailing by a fraction of a second. The beer is rich bodied, though not thick, there is enough heft to cling to the palate though. The toasted malt and caramel notes linger on the palate along with a rich berry / citrus note. The fruit notes bring out notes of bergamot, infused blackberry, ruby-red grapefruit, currant and even some notes of lychee. There is a solid bitterness here that can be a touch biting and it does provide a solid anchor in the finish to the fruit and malt that is found up front. The hop character really contributes to the perceived sweetness here, while the malt character provides a richness to the overall palate effect despite the omnipresent hop character.
This is perhaps not the most complex beer, but it is very enjoyable; almost a marriage of an IPA and a big, malty Brown Ale. This works quite well as there is not enough roast malt to get in the way of the ample hop character, but it still has a rich maltiness to it. I would be quite happy to drink quite a few pints of this.
GeneralGao (3614) - Iowa City, Iowa, USA - MAY 7, 2007
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
22 oz bottle served at cellar temperature. Poured a clear ruby brown color. Head was two fingers high and light tan in color. Aroma was of toffee, molasses, and husky grain. Delicately sweet on the tongue with lots of biscuity malt and caramel flavor. There were also a strong vanilla accent and a hint of milk chocolate.
SledgeJr (3577) - Omaha, Nebraska, USA - OCT 17, 2009
3.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
In the bomber bottle at the 2009 Crescent Moon Summer Beer Festival. An odd name because this beer is mighty black. However, it is mighty good. This has an intense maltiness that totally pushes the limits of "brown" ale. Simply a great beer. Chicory, licorice and anise. Heavy syrup and molasses. Thick, rich and delicious.
hotstuff (3567) - Indiana, USA - SEP 5, 2006
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottle. Medium sized tan head that mostly diminished, minimal lacing, transparent, carbonation, and a reddish brown hue. Sweet, malty, chocolate, toasty, and nutty nose. Flavor was caramel and nutty. ABV was not very noticeable. Needs more flavor. Mildly tingly mouthfeel.
Nuffield (3541) - Roseville, Minnesota, USA - AUG 17, 2006
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 12/20
Easy to drink...it just slides down with a sweet silkiness, mildly frothy and without harsh edges. Yet that smoothness comes with a downside, in that it has very mild flavors up front (caramel and some molasses is about it) and a quick finish. The alcohol is not apparent as alcohol in a "hot" way, but the lack of dimensionality makes it come out a bit. Very attractive (very very dark for a brown, good dense head like a good Belgian), good feel in the mouth, and very drinkable--not a bad way to spend the evening with a 7.5% beer--but there isnít enough flavor depth to make this a real winner.
KAggie97 (3529) - Ugly, Hot, and Humid Spring, Texas, USA - JUL 30, 2006
2.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 7/20
Bottle. Aroma is straight-up coffee. Pours a deep, deep brown with a thin body and minimal head. Taste is sour nut with a slight corn finish. Palate is thick and it spreads the bizarre taste. If this is fun, shoot me.
Aubrey (3356) - Bellingham, Washington, USA - MAR 18, 2006
3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 11/20
Bottle: Deep brown with ruby-red highlights. Chewy, medium body. Somewhat flavorful, with notes of milk chocolate, bread, nuts, brown sugar and caramel. Pinch of sourness. Aromas of toast and roast (nice at first, but they seem to fade to the point of being well in the background). Mildish bitterness follows. Nice -- yet common and predictable -- flavors and aromas.
ben4321 (3353) - Hoboken, New Jersey, USA - FEB 25, 2010
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Location: 22 oz bottle from Wine and Beer Westpark, 2/25/10
Aroma: Roasted malts, chocolate, a good amount of cherry, some nuttiness, and earth
Appearance: Pours a dark brown color with a fizzy beige head, some lace
Flavor: The taste is somewhat sweet and fruity, with a fruity sourness to it as well
Palate: The carbonation is fairly lively, with a somewhat sticky feel, and an astringent finish
Wow, this one is not at all what I was expecting at all. It looks like a brown ale, it smells like a brown ale, but it tastes like sour fruits. Man, a total surprise. Iím not even sure how I feel. Did I like this? Did it work? I canít decide. I think it is interesting, but ultimately I wouldnít say it is making me pumped to rush out and try it again. Weird stuff...
Beerlando (3342) - Orlando, Florida, USA - MAR 13, 2009
2.8 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 12/20
Courtesy DragonStout. Pours a clear, dark chestnut brown with a small, foamy, dark khaki colored head. Minimal, spotty lacing marks the glass. The nose is overpoweringly sweet, notes of brown sugar, caramel, and week old banana dominating. Hints of cocoa show in the background. Flavors too are excessively saccharine, showing almost like a Belgian strong ale at times, with a big, sweet raisin component to go along with the caramelized brown sugar and overly ripe banana. Medium-full, syrupy, and sticky on the palate. This one is sugar overload for me.