Brad (364) - Berkley, Michigan, USA - FEB 18, 2005
4.3 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: JUN 6, 2005 Re-Rate 2005 Batch, 8 oz. Bottle: All I have been hearing is that the new batch blows the old one away. So I had to see for myself, thanks to Sully for opening on up this weekend. Poured a cloudy red/pink body with a light diminshing pinkish head. Aroma was of raspberry first and fore most, with hints of milk chocolate, other tart fruits (cherries maybe), sugar/honey. Flavor wasn’t overly sweet, with raspberries allowing other flavors to take part as well, chocolate was especially memorable. At 18% alcohol, I was surprised not to taste a single bit of it. The bugs, if there were any originally have definately been worked out and what worked has been improved upon.
2002, Bottle: Was able to split a bottle with a friend while talking beer at the brewery. After letting it warm up for 20 minutes or so I took a whiff and was impressed. Having had bad experiances with fruit experiments like this one I was preparing myself for another let down. I was mildly impressed. Strong raspberry mixed in with chocolate. Could stand to lose some of the sweetness. Overall a good beer, but a better experiance.
8 5 7 3 16
TAR (2495) - Lafayette, Colorado, USA - SEP 17, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
Draft: Opaque, yeasted burgundy. Dense, slow-rising bubbles. Notes of red licorice and toffee in the aroma with deep, well-rounded, raspberry undertones. Soft, but steadfast, carbonation. Velvety viscosity. Slight tartness mixes with fat malt flavors. Very plump and fluffy fruitiness. Overripe plum, milk chocolate, and raspberry whispers. Masterfully disguised alcohol. Some cottony malt textures balanced by a leathery tang. Fresh raisins prevail in the finish with notes of red licorice, cakey malt flavors, and an acidic tingle. If anything, this would benefit from more dryness and a touch less fruit. Very nice.
cb (810) - Roeland Park, Kansas, USA - SEP 9, 2004
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Strong, slightly tart black raspberry aroma. Thick malty tartness. Huge granola-like character balanced the sticky fruit. Belies the high-alcohol content--extremely well-made. Slight smokiness evident as beer warms.
jsquire (3465) - St. Marys, Ohio, USA - MAY 26, 2004
4.5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: MAY 21, 2005 5.14.05. from the big bottle at pysychprofs. My review of this was not as good as it should have been. From the bottle, this is just a wonderfully artisinal drink. Nose of fresh raspberries and chocolate. Delicious sipping beer of dark chocolate, fresh ripe raspberries and alcohol. This is a wonderful presentation of the perfect use of fruit in beer. (old rating>Dark beer with pretty red hues. Strong red raspberry nose. Thick, raspberry syrup mouthfeel. The dominate flavor is clearly the sweetness/tartness of fresh raspberries, but with enough maltiness to support it. Very enjoyable beer to just smell. This is the way to put fruit into beer. Thanks to Jim for letting me share.
hotstuff (4092) - Indiana, USA - MAY 24, 2004
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle. Thanks to flemdawg for sharing this one at thedm’s and hotstuff’s Fort Wayne tasting. Poured no head with very few fine sized bubbles. Uncarbonated, mostly opaque with a reddish-brown hue. The aroma was sweet and a big raspberry aroma. The flavor was acidic, tart, sour and yes, raspberry tasting. The mouthfeel was sour and this beer had a medium textured body with no lacing.
thedm (4935) - Fort Wayne, USA - MAY 17, 2004
3.8 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
This draft brew from the brewery poured no head at all. Actually, I think there was 1 and only 1 bubble in it and it was clear colored and mostly lasting. No head means no lacing either. Well, the body was a semi-opaque dark brown color with no visible carbonation. The aroma was strongly vinous and malty. The mouth feel was not noted, but the flavor was that of dark malts raisins molasses and only a very mild raspberry scent. Interesting flavor and very different from other brews.
Silphium (3167) - East Lansing, Michigan, USA - MAY 16, 2004
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: DEC 4, 2005 Re-rate from 2004 6.3 oz bottle.I sampled this as part of a tasting before but wanted to try it again on a fresh palate, and my impression of this beer changed. Caramely brown body with red hints, topped by a quickly dissipating light tan head. Caramely, pruney, raisiny aroma, heavy on the doppelbock characteristics, and notes of raspberry (but not dominant, as I found before). Very toasty body, lots of prune and raisin, with the somewhat tart raspberries really coming through most strongly in the finish and amazing aftertaste. Caramel and chocolate finishes off the raspberries at the end of the sip. There aren’t many beers that "warm up" to a delicious finish, but this is one of those. Very softly carbonated. I didn’t pick up all of this complexity the first time around, which may be due to a fresher palate (this time) or a different product.
Previous rating:Jim (flemdawg) was kind enough to bring a rare bottle of this Eisbock to Fort Wayne. Poured a ruddy orange/red-brown, with nary a bubble, achieving a very "syrupy" look in the glass. Aroma was very, very strong raspberry, with a touch of caramel and toast. Extremely tart and full-flavored, dominated by quality raspberry (of course) and some toast and caramel, although the raspberry clearly dominates the palate. A rich, rich beverage. 13% ABV? I wouldn’t have guessed it. I really enjoyed this beverage, but hesitate to rate it too highly, as the "beer" aspect of this Eisbock is really drowned out by the delicious raspberries (8-3-8-4-15).
flemdawg (531) - Naples, Florida, USA - MAY 9, 2004
4.7 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
Dang yo! An incredible beer would be an understatment. Thanks to walleye for bringing his bottle to the Fort to share. Lets start with the aroma shall we? A big hit of raspberry perserves, then there was molasses raisns and a hint of alcohol, at 13% this was no suprise. Dark brown body with a minute tan ring of bubbles around the edge and almost no lacing at all. And now the taste. Ooooh doggie! Rapberries for all and throw in some cholotae and malts to make it all good. The alcohol was masked superbly and I would have had to really try to find it in the taste. Such a smooth brew as well. So very easy to drink it might be illegal. With out thinking about it, I could easily but down 4 or 5 before I would realize what I was doing. I heard that walleye got the last two bottles, say it ain’t so!
walleye (1066) - Sterling Heights, Michigan, USA - MAY 9, 2004
5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
UPDATED: DEC 10, 2006 another rerate here. had this on 12/08/06 at the brewery, this stuff keeps getting better and better my 3rd number 5 rating.RE-RATE 5/7/06 ON TAP AS JTW SAID ONE NIGHT ONLY BUT WILL BE AVAILABLE IN 6.3 OZ BOTTLES THIS ONE WAS DIFFERANT THAN THE 1ST ABV IS NOW 18%. POURED A MUDDY BROWN WITH LITLE TO NO HEAD. AROMA RASPBERRIES AND WHERE DID THAT CHOCOLATE COME FROM MALTS, WITH HINTS OF ALCOHOL AND DARK FRUITS . FLAVOR SAME AS AROMA . THIS WAS NOT AS SYRUPY AS THE 1ST OR AS SWEET. I WASN’T GOING TO CHANGE MY RATING BUT THOUGHT BETTER OF IT BECAUSE THIS BEER IS DIFFERANT THAN THE 1 ST BATCH THEY MADE LAST YEAR. MT 1ST RAINGS WERE 9,5,9,4,18 ON MAY 9TH 2004.THE BROTHERS PUT A LOT OF TIME AND EFFERT INTO MAKING THIS A QUAILTY BREW AND IT SHOWED THAT WHEN BRET CAME TO THE TABLE EXPLAIND THE PROCESS OF MAKING THIS GREAT BREW WITH THE RBS THAT WHERE AT THE TABLE .WOW. shared a bottle with flemdawg. Poured dark brown wth hints of ruby around the edges, no head with some lacing.aroma ,nice balance of raspberry,raisin molasses.flavor was like the best homemade raspberry preserves I have had got hints of molasses and citrus almost like a tangerine mouth feel was smooth and dry in a good way.This was a very good beer,it would be very good for a after dinner drink or even dessert. Did I say WOW
ClarkVV (3892) - Allston, Massachusetts, USA - JAN 25, 2004
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: OCT 17, 2005 Historic Batch #1 brewed in 2002. What a great time at the brewery. Bret Kuhnhenn went in to his cellar and pulled a bottle out for me to try. Man was this stuff incredible. Aroma is pure heaven. Perfect ripe red raspberry jam aroma, sticky, sweet, boisterous. Wow. This is one of the most drinkable beers I’ve ever had. I had to restrain myself from downing it in just a few sips. Big sweet raspberry flavor meets lovely dark dark chocolate malt. Huge body on it and wonderfully wedded are the raspberries and malt. Alcohol is nowhere to be found. The more it warmed, the more I was able to explore the flavors hiding behind the raspberries. Dark, dry chocolate, vanilla, and almost a nuttiness that I cant put my finger on. Exceptional. I went home and had a Kulmbacher Eisbock that night, and the magic of the Kulmbacher seemed paled after trying Kuhnhenn’s gem. The fact that they were able to successfully brew a beer of this magnitude with raspberries is very impressive.
Batch #2 brewed in late 2004. Already oxidized, lightly so, and not in a bad way. The beer has a rich, thick body, but yet a very big lack of carbonation protests that this be a syrupy, cloying monster. So score one for oxidation. It also adds to the lovely sherry-like flavor of the beer. A gentle, sweet sipper, with abounding complexity and by no means outdone or overdone with raspberries. The malt is soothing, rich and sweet, but yet the beer is balanced so nicely with honey, caramel and rich chocolate. It’s a shame that these bottles come so small. Quite a bit different from the first batch, much less raspberry influence, less thick chcolate and much less thick of a body. Perhaps that’s just the oxidation from the bottle size. I hope I can try it on draught or from the 500mL bottle.