drewbeerme (3809) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - JAN 2, 2011
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
bottle. thanks to kan. pours dark brown with off white head. nose of raisin, vanilla, nail polish, and vinegar. flavors of sweet dates, vinegar, hints of bourbon.
DavoleBomb (1467) - Pennsylvania, USA - JAN 1, 2011
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Poured into a tulip. Unfortunately a got a taste of this beer before I was ready. I had a about a 1/4 of the bottle gush out upon removing the cork. Into my mouth and down my throat went the beer in a fast and furious manner. Anyway, thanks to Khazadum on BA for this.
4.0 A: Opaque black color. Any of the the yeast that was in there got mixed in when it gushed. Two fingers of creamy tan head (once the carbonation came in control) with good retention and a good amount of lacing.
3.5 S: The wine comes through stronger than the bourbon. Usually Iím not a fan of the wine barrel aging, but this is good so far in the nose. Date aroma is there, but Iím not picking up much of the vanilla. Lactic acid is there in moderate amounts and acetic acid in smaller amounts. Woody with a mild tannic astringency. A bit of the toastiness of the underlying porter comes through.
4.0 T: The taste is both interesting and palate pleasing. Again the wine dominates the bourbon, but the bourbon comes through stronger the more the bottle is emptied. Itís actually quite vinous for what it is. There isnít a lot of sourness in the taste, but there is some lactic and acetic acid with emphasis on the lactic. Again oak with a slight tannic flavor. Dates come through very strong with grape, plum, and prune fruitiness.
3.5 M: Medium body. Carbonation is a bit aggressive, but okay I guess. Good creaminess with a touch of astringency on finish.
4.0 D: Not too shabby for what seems like an unholy mix of grape and grain. I never expected a bourbon and wine barrel aged beer to surface, but it seem now that it can be done with a fair amount of success. This is a welcome departure from the more typical wilds and bourbon barrel beers and is something Iíd like to see more of in the future.
Verecund (82) - North Carolina, USA - DEC 29, 2010
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
As others have reported, this is a bit of a gusher, even when served (fairly) coldly.
Opened on 10.31.2010.
Pours a dark lava, ashen brown, and the mocha head settles into a third finger of lace-giving froth.
Curious, inviting nose. Thereís brown sugar and caramel sweetness, but itís overtaken by the wine barrel, dark fruit character, and some unidentifiable spiciness. Quite vinous; some lactic character as well.
Lactic acidity sits on the tip of the tongue. The base is sweet porter with a good bit of dark prunus fruit character (plum), but some spiciness comes in mid-palate. The oak is smooth and not overpowering, and I also get some vanilla as this warms. Grape-like, vinous finish. I still donít get much bourbon out of it, but the wine barrels lend themselves nicely here.
Medium-bodied, and surprisingly full and carbonated in the mouth. Itís unsurprisingly warming, though not hot.
Aside from being a great beer, this one would be a nice transition beer for the heavy porter/RIS guy who avoids sour, as the lactic notes cut through, but donít overwhelm, the base beers.
If I had a more interesting word to say interesting, I would use it; unusual and winning
dcschiller (2156) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - DEC 28, 2010
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
(pour thanks to Dave-you guys donít know him). Wonderful funky beer with aroma and body from the bourbon. Wish there was more to go íround....Really nice and went over well with even with the folks who are not big sour fans.
Damico (2214) - Royersford, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 28, 2010
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Chalsk is gonna love this one. Thank you Mike for bringing this awesome sour porter! It pours murky swamp brown with a big bubbly dark tan head (after a bit of a gush) and some quality sediment floating at the bottom there. The wild aroma form the sour yeast is dominant with light sweet notes. The flavor of a typical Flemish Sour Brown ale that settles with lots of notes of vanilla, fruit, and bourbon. It is very smooth going down on a medium body - quite delicious.
blipp (5476) - Newark, New Jersey, USA - DEC 21, 2010
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Bottle shared at Paulís Thanksgiving tasting. Pours brown with a beige head. Funky and sweet aroma with some bourbon like sweetness. The flavor has funky oak, some weird spicy notes, bourbon, and light roasted notes. A little bit messy, but somehow this worked for me.
Hopper (827) - San Antonio, Texas, USA - DEC 20, 2010
3.9 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
750 ml. brown bottle. A deep murky brown beer with a very nice head. The aroma is sour in a lactic sort of way, lots of citrus with an undertone of chocolate and spices. The taste is citrus(lemons), sour, lactic, and again undertones of chocolate and cherries, dark fruit(the dates maybe?). You know I was expecting more of a "bourbon barrel character" because of the name but that was not the case and did not take anything away from this. I think the yeast plays the greatest role in defining how this beer tastes and the base recipe with all the other additions(cinnamon, vanilla, dates) are in the background. This was one of those beers when looking at the ingredients and the process made me ask if it could all work together. Well it did but I thought Vlad the Imp Aler was the better beer.
TheAlum (4989) - Lisle, Illinois, USA - DEC 19, 2010
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
750 ml bottle mail ordered from the brewery. Pours a very dark blackish brown hue, near opaque overall, some brownish edges with a big tan cakey head that dies to a moderate size, laces small. Aromas area nice dose of roasted malts and coffee, followed up by lactic acid and wet oak, bigger red wine tannins and flourishes of Bourbon spirit, grapes and sour lemons and plums, cherries. Roast throws some nice notes, light vanilla spice and faint cinnamon really makes it welcoming, complex. I get more red wine and then the vanilla really starts to assert itself as it warms a bit more. Initial is doses of vanilla and red wine, sour lactic acid, sour red cherries and grapes, some lingering roast sticks through, touches of more wet oak and bourbon spirit. Touches of cinnamon, red wine tannins grow a bit more as it warms. Some more sourness, as it swoops into vanilla and a dryness in the finish. Certainly, a very interesting and complex beer. The sourness and oak, lactic acid and moderate to lighter sour is compelling, the vanilla gets a bit cloying on the backend, covers up lingering roast a bit more than Iíd like. But the oak and sourness really are nice, a more feeling red wine, but Bourbon definitely creeps in. This is a complex beer, fruity and sour, good oak presence, roast and spices of vanilla and slight cinnamon play well, but in my opinion muddle the roast/sour synergy. Very nice beer
deyholla (5404) - Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA - DEC 15, 2010
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle shared at the Ann Arbor Cascade Tasting. Poured a cloudy deep brown with a brown head that dissipated slowly to the edges. Aroma had a bit of alcohol, but mainly consisted of tart red fruits and a note of dry red wine. Flavor started with tart, slightly acidic red fruit and finished with a bit of a bourbon note in the finish.
douglas88 (5171) - Portland, Oregon, USA - DEC 13, 2010
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle shared by Jordan at the Holiday tasting, my favorite of the night! Pours a murky dark brown color with a medium fluffy white head. The aroma is deep sour fruits, funk, light vanilla. A rich flavor of berries and fruit, lacto, funky, vanilla and light bourbon, very sour but not acidic. Woody. Very nice.