goldtwins (4320) - Nesconset, New York, USA - OCT 22, 2005
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Poured a very deep amber color with a minimal head. Legs noticed as well. Big smokey aroma that covers most of the malt. Light alcohol nose. Sweet malty flavor up front with smoke mixed in. Silky but thin mouthfeel. Nice warming sensation.
Aubrey (3509) - Bellingham, Washington, USA - MAY 30, 2005
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: MAY 4, 2008 Draft at brewery: Deep, dark brown. Invitingly roasty nose. Seems a little light up front, but it improves drastically as it warms (in more ways than just texture). Soft, velvety and rich, with a mild carbonation. Notes of toffee, chocolate, nuts (almonds and cashews), toasted bread, campfire-soaked wood, chewy peat, and some smoke in the background. Nicely balanced, with an earthy, grassy and herbal bitterness (mostly at the finish and aftertaste). Eight percent is hidden pretty well, but it’s a cozy beer for sure. Good stuff, especially in a globe/snifter glass. RERATE BOTTLE (08): Inky black (dark brown in front of light); thinnish head. Chewy, very flavorful malts, with coffee, peat, anise, tar, caramel, milk chocolate, smoke and charcoal. Moderate bitterness with some burntness. Tasty stuff.
heemer77 (5294) - Urbandale, Iowa, USA - MAY 22, 2005
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Courtesy of matt_dinges. The body is dark brown. There is smoky oak with bourbon and tobacco. This seems like a cross between a massive Scotch ale with a rauchbier with more peaty character. The taste is slightly smoky caramel and oak. There is also that peaty moss flavor that makes this unique and interesting. This is in your face.
mdi (573) - Nebraska, USA - MAY 17, 2005
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
22oz bottle...dark, very relucant head(I tried to force it too)...aroma is smoked brown sugar, but not in that order...the smoke is more subtle than that, this isn’t a rauchbier, but it is there...so it isn’t a purist example, but rather a bastardized american version, which I rather like. sweet and syrup come to mind...as well as sticky, so you can get that the body is pretty big, and a bit dull from lack of bubbles...but a touch of life remains, like in a Davendra Banhart song...this might be the pefect juxtaposition to that homebrewed DIPA I just had...it was dry, resiny, and bitter with a light-ish body...this is big sweet malt monster...I like exteme beers.
Ernest (7320) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - APR 28, 2005
2.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
UPDATED: JUL 5, 2008 Bottle.
Head is initially small, fizzy, light brown, fully diminishing.
Body is dark brown.
Aroma is moderately malty (caramel, husks, roasted grain), lightly hoppy (herbs), with light notes of smoke and earth.
Flavor is heavily sweet, lightly bitter.
Finish is moderately sweet, lightly to moderately bitter, slightly husky.
Medium to full body, syrupy/watery texture, soft carbonation, lightly alcoholic.
Pretty good, if a little rough and overly sweet.
Crosling (1864) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - MAR 16, 2005
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Sampled on draught @ The Grand Lake Brewing Company in Grand Lake, CO. Deep ruby in color. Slightly smoky, malt accented aroma suggesting brandy soaked malts and rich plums and currants. Taste is full and vinous with the brandy undertones continuing on, along with a touch of black licorice, cherries and currants. A good beer, though I wish it was a little less vinous and a bit more toasty and caramel-like.