TheAlum (5964) - Aurora, Illinois, USA - FEB 6, 2012
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Snifter on tap at the brewpub (Chicago, IL). I wasn’t too keen on the idea of this, but it was the only new beer I had left. Pours a fairly well hazed almost murky amber pour, some fire on the edges, but dulled overall. A big cakey offwhite near beige head sits atop. Cakes and laces ok, sticks around. Aromas are sticky sweetness, barrel presence shows whiskey bourbon, vanilla, oak. Fairly sweet, warm gentle spirit grows. Caramel, bready malts, and biscuits. Initial is medium bodied, a bit thinned by the barrel, showing bread and biscuits, toffee up front. Middle shows barrel presence but not hot, offering rich oak and vanilla tannins, sweeter but enjoyable, deep and spicy. Some fruit, apple and pear, bread, wheat, and touches of spice. Backend shows some heat, more touches of spirit, vanilla, still fairly creamy and sweet. Apples stick around, this actually works, as the barrel is very flavorful but not as hot as anticipated. The heat from the base is hidden by the barrel, the sweetness and thickness thinned a bit. Surprisingly worked on a decent level. An odd choice to put in a spirit barrel, but it wasn’t bad. A bit sweet, but still works.
deyholla (7156) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - FEB 4, 2012
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
On tap at the Clyborn location. Pours a beardless gold with an amber hue and a white head that dissipates to the edges. Aroma has notes of caramel and vanilla with light fruit and sweet grain. Flavor has a lot of sweet grains with vanilla, caramel and light fruit.
NobleSquirrel (3438) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - JAN 17, 2012
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Draft at Clybourn. Interesting. Lightly hazed deep gold with a hint of orange in the middle. Fluffy white head dissipates. Nose is bready with some spicy notes, light vanilla and noted floral hops? On tasting, it almost gets pulled to the over the top barrel side, but the base beer is robust enough to stand up to it. Vanilla and bready malt with some light continental hopping as well. Balanced and neat. Pretty solid BA beer.
pantanap (3366) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - JAN 14, 2012
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
On tap at goose island clybourn... Pours a mostly non-transparent orangecopper hued consistency and topped with a thin wispy film of soapy white head... Aroma of dark fruit caramel, vanilla, and lighter barrel notes. Semi to mostly sweet with a more than moderate dark fruit component, faint semi-tart apple lingering in the background... More sweet than what the aroma leads on to be. Sweeter caramel and toffee, vanilla and soft bourbon. Mild warming, touch of booziness. Sft to medium bodied with lighter level oF carbonation. Long and extended sweet finish wth a touch of bitter char on the backend. Ok.
drewbeerme (3879) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - JAN 13, 2012
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Draft at goose. Pours amber golden with white head. Aroma is a bit buttery, vanilla, and some roasted barrel char. Flavors have vanilla, buttery, caramel, toasted nutty barrel character. an odd choice for a bourbon barrel but it works.