TheAlum (5530) - Lisle, Illinois, USA - JUL 18, 2011
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Draft on tap at the brewpub (Chicago, IL). Pours a dark blackish hue, opaque, with perhaps some ruby brown edges and bottom. Pretty dark with a bubbly frothy light brown head. Laces ok. Aromas are a pronounced red currant fruit, jammy and tart mixing with roasted malts, a touch of cocoa, and some sweeter biscuits and toffee. Touches of coffee, the red currant really takes hold. Pleasant on the nose. Initial is medium bodied, more roastiness, some coffee take hold, with some red currant, dry and tart. Touches of red fruit dance with bakers cocoa, roasted malts, and toast. Belgian influence is downplayed, instead providing a pleasant clash between the tart dark fruit and dry roasty malt body. Red fruit is more pronounced up front and lingers on, a change of pace from the base Squid Ink beer. Finish is lingering tart and dry berry, some sourness, fruity and jammy with a good clashing roast, toast, and some coffee and cocoa. A nice clash, but it does work well. A pronounced red currant element seems an improvement to me over the base. Fresh, jammy, and tart, but still a pronounced dryness and roast into the finish. Neat.