bbbeer (411) - Massachusetts, USA - FEB 5, 2013
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Dark brown with bubbles, red tinge, and medium tan head. Aroma smoky malt, roasted coffee, faint beef jerky. Medium body, creamy mouthfeel. Flavor is smoky but not overly so, roasted malt, light background sweetness. Heavier than expected yet drinkable as well. Good.
TAR (2346) - Lafayette, Colorado, USA - JAN 15, 2013
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 12/20
Deep prune. Scattered but creamy dirty-white foam. Inviting aromas of baker’s chocolate, pen ink, licorice root, cassis, pumpernickel bread, ashy smoke, tobacco, and plum. Hint of burnt popcorn and light on melanoidin. Firm, snug carbonation. Beefy smokiness collides with subdued ripe plum esters and luscious waves of slippery rye, initially. Well-textured malt provides sufficient depth and structure to the edgy roast. Toasty dextrins beautifully contrast with the fruity rye and soft, tealike hoppiness. Exemplary balance between suppleness and the well-attenuated frame, thanks to the semi-sharp roastiness which imparts dryness as it teams up with the ashy smokiness. Looming huskiness (burnt popcorn) lends a hint of acidity which hampers the malt richness. Refined Hersbruckeresque bitterness vivifies the bittersweet chocolate and black licorice tingle as it lightly splashes the palate with dense nectar. Finishes sharply roasty with a plumlike twang and bittersweet chocolate punch adorned with raspy smoke. As a huge fan of lager, I was really hoping to love this. But it’s simply too fruity and sweet to be highly sessionable, and the huskiness, albeit extremely subtle, is difficult to overlook. With a few modifications this would probably be really good.
durhambeer (2398) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - DEC 14, 2012
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Draught from Churchkey in DC. Dark brown pour; nose is slightly smoky with strong notes of smoked meats. Dark sweet chocolate malts. Slight rye spice. Taste is something to chew on. Great balance of sweet and smoke, and nice lower ABV.
NachlamSie (2346) - Tennessee, USA - DEC 7, 2012
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 18/20
Pint at Churchkey. Pours a dark, dark reddish color. The aroma is very roasty with lots of coffee, a bit of campfire and faint spiced notes. The flavor is smoky and smoldering with a decent palate. There is also roasted coffee, like I would expect from a porter and figs and light veggies I might associate with a dunkel. The finish lingers like smoked meat.
Travlr (7997) - Washington, Washington DC, USA - DEC 5, 2012
4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Draft. Very dark brown color, beige large bubble head. Aroma of burnt embers and su tle crispy bacon. Taste is chewy, malty, smokey. Tasty stuff.
BVery (4265) - Burnsville, Minnesota, USA - NOV 28, 2012
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Tap at Churchkey. Very dark pour with a frothy head. Nice smokey aroma. Taste is milder smoke, chocolate, and roast. Would have guessed higher ABV.
argo0 (10388) - Washington DC, USA - OCT 15, 2012
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
Snallygaster, draft. Clear cola body, small beige head. Aroma is moderately sweet, bittersweet chocolate, some caramel, smoke. Taste is moderately sweet, milk chocolate, caramel/cola, some smoke. Medium body, some stickiness -- much bigger body than ABV suggests.
jredmond (4023) - Manhattan, New York, USA - APR 29, 2012
3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
Draft at pony bar with Linh. Pours a deep brown with lots of sticky lacing. Aroma is sweet smoked malts. Mouthfeel is thin to medium with notes of smoked malts, pine, light bandaids. I’m personally not a huge fan of smoked beers, but 8oz was tolerable.
Leighton (6973) - London, ENGLAND - JAN 28, 2012
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle at Sander’s place, NYC. Breakfast beer! Pours black with a foamy, tan head. Aroma is true, pleasant smoke, rocks, and subtle rye tang. Flavor is alright but doesn’t quite live up to the nose. Light to medium sweet, fine roast and smoke, some slight tangy rye. Medium bodied with lively carbonation. Dry, bitter roast finish, light smoke, light ham, light burnt sugars. Alright.
auerbrau (2953) - Peace Dale, Rhode Island, USA - NOV 25, 2011
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
22oz Bottle - purchased at Ryan and Casey Liqours - Greenfield, MA. I’ve also had this on tap at Atwood’s Tavern - Cambridge, MA. Similar rustic, meaty aroma to the Bianca, with some pine resins and a bit of rendered fat. A dry, broken-down presentation, with a nice brown porter-like malt base and refreshing lightness. To me, this is what I imagine early beers tasting like, sans the certain sourness they had. A nip of smoke, some grain complexity, and a rounded brownness. Of all the beer work being done in Massachusetts right now, I think these two session smoke beers from High & Mighty are the most original, they seem to access a new niche of flavor, price, and drinkability. Excited to see what else they produce following this round of re-imaging.