JCB (3999) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - NOV 19, 2008
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
22oz from Sam’s, Durham. Fairly nice pour, deep brown and with an appealing two-finger head. Aroma is richly spicy, with rye notes blending together with some dry roasts and malts. Slightly leafy quality to the taste, but perhaps that’s just the bitters in there, and there’s a mild fruity quality deep in there too. The rye isn’t too prominent, I suppose, and I agree with others who feel this resembles a dry stout on some level. But it’s enjoyable, whatever we decide to call it.
nearbeer (3998) - Knoxville, Tennessee, USA - DEC 19, 2008
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 16/20
650 ml. Translucent deep chestnut with a half-inch head that lasts and leaves Swiss cheese lacing behind. Aroma of peppery rye bread, molasses and light licorice. Flavor is similar with some fresh herb-hops peeking through as well. Nice bittersweet charry finish. Heavy body is smooth, peppery-tingly and roasty dry. Damn fine lager.
Butters (3928) - Richmond, Virginia, USA - NOV 15, 2008
2.8 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 10/20
I just must not like rye. I have yet to have a rye beer that i’ve actually liked. Pours a dark brown with some tan head Aroma is wierd, a twinge of alcohol, slightly vegetal, and very earthy dark malt. (is that what rye smells like?) Flavor is burnt, almost like dirt. Bitterish finish, but not lingering. Not my thing.
SSSteve (3899) - - OCT 23, 2008
3.8 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
viscous pours with a dark brown body under a large orange/brown head. looks like oil coming out of the bottle with very slow moving lace. smells chocolaty but not as potent as the appearance would lead. the thing that really stands out about this is the palate. milky, creamy, thick, viscous. flavors of chocolate, hops(orange), crisp rye pale notes and red apples. hints of almond and vanilla. i can’t remember having a beer this thick and creamy.
FlacoAlto (3810) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - AUG 22, 2009
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
A solid pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces a very dense, tightly beaded, four-finger thic head that belies the relatively low alcohol of this beer. As the head slowly subsides it leaves lots of lacing on the sides of my glass. The head is a lightly browned, creamed-amber color. The beer is a dark, concentrated amber color that could be confused for black in a dark’ish bar; when held up to the light the beer shows a brilliantly clear, deep cranberry hue. A sniff of the aroma from the freshly popped bottle yielded a signature rye spiciness. A deeper inspection of the beer yields sweet, candied malt notes, spicy rye notes, toasted, almost burnt whole grain bread aromas, as well as a significant whole grain character that seems quite wholesome. Hop character contributes a nice sweet-citrus character and in combination with some of the caramelized malt a not of berries. After smelling this for a bit, I realize that much of the candied malt aromatics seem to be induced by citrus hop notes. This is a fairly complex smelling beer, it is only a mix of grain / malt and hop character (no fermentation character to speak of), but it remains quite interesting. I like that despite the ample hop notes, caramelized malt and toasted grain character the spicy rye notes are still able to be quite noticeable.
Thick and viscous feeling as this rolls across my tongue; in fact the texture from the rye is clearly evident, this is most definitely a sipping brew despite the moderate alcohol. Biting hops contribute a bitterness to the finish as well as an orange-zest, ruby red grapefruit and tangerine flavors to the middle of this beer. The hop character is ample, but mixes with a roasted malt character that reminds me of deeply toasted grain, a touch of bitter burnt grain, and even a touch of acidity from the burnt malt; at times the roast grain notes can almost hide the ample citrusy hop character. The hops have an almost bitter citrus oil component to it that turns to pine sap like flavors at times. The spicy rye flavors seem to get a bit lost trying to compete with the dark malt and, especially, the expressive hop notes.
Despite this being ten months old that hop character is still a bit too much in this beer. I do likely a nicely hopped beer from time to time, but here it gets in the way of noticing the nice spicy rye notes and the other malt complexity (the nose was actually more complex than the flavor ends up being). Even the roast malt and the hops seem to not do the best job of playing well together; the two can be just a bit cacophonous in the integration and aren’t nearly as harmonious as one might like. Having said that this is still a nice beer, as with other heavily rye-based beers, the texture can certainly take a bit of getting used to, but it makes for a chewy, hardy-seeming beer that is nice to sip upon.
nickd717 (3600) - San Francisco, California, USA - APR 19, 2010
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bomber shared by chswimmer on BA. Thanks, Craig.
Pours a clear dark brown color with a light tan head that has decent retention.
Aroma is fairly simple. Roasty with rye notes, maybe some coffee. Didn’t really pick up too much else going on. Nice though.
Flavor has a little more going on. Once again, rye and roast are dominant. Some bitter coffee, and an earthy and resinous hop character. Good stuff.
Medium body and average carbonation level.
A pretty good beer overall. Fairly drinkable.
KAggie97 (3529) - Ugly, Hot, and Humid Spring, Texas, USA - AUG 7, 2009
3.2 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 12/20
Bottle. Pours a nice mahogany but too lively. Beige head sits nicely atop the beverage. Flavor is chocolate coffee powder, floral grass. Tingly mouthfeel that leavs a lingering film. Not bad but one is enough. Also, is this a malty beer? Is it a hoppy beer? Settle for one or the other guys!
Headbanger (3488) - Aurora, Illinois, USA - OCT 9, 2008
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: JAN 8, 2009 22oz bottle-Pours dark brown with a tint of dark amber with a nice tight tan head. Aroma of coffee, malt, chocolate, and vanilla. Taste of the same with some sweetness and vanilla thrown in. This full bodied brew has a finish of slight bitterness. This is a nice tasty balanced beer.
Aubrey (3482) - Bellingham, Washington, USA - DEC 24, 2008
3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Deep brown with red accents. Nice tan lace but thinnish head. Light yet soft texture. Big roasty-burnt flavors and aromas made me think of chocolate and tar. Faint molasses sweetness. Black licorice bite without the anise aroma. Charcoal in the aftertaste. Malts were rather husky. Snappy hops were flighty, as they seemed to come and go too fast. Overall, I thought it had some nice things going on, such as the strong roast and bold grain bill ... but there were some objectionable things as well, such as the finish, which seemed a bit stark and bitter. Although, as the beer warmed, flavors did seem to improve, and a syrupy sweetness seemed to surface, which helped to balance things out.
WeeHeavySD (3359) - San Diego (Hillcrest), Oregon, USA - JAN 20, 2009
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bomber via trade with Ibrew2or3, shared with my girlfriend cyn, who has a thing for Rye beer. Pours a rich black with a 2 finger tan head. Nose is sweet rich and malty, with a big punch of rye. Taste is sweet and smooth and very rich and malty.