loweredsixth (946) - Clovis, California, USA - FEB 29, 2004
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours a beautiful dark opaque brown color with a large, creamy, thick, everlasting tan head. The aroma was full of spices, clove, alcohol, sour raisins, and a nice bready/yeasty tone. The flavor was almost perfectly complex...sweet banana/clove, spiced apples, sweet grapes, alcohol, yeast, and some acidic/spicy hops at the end. The feel was very smooth, thic, creamy, crisp carbonation, with a semi-dry finish.
Sham (1845) - Seattle, Washington, USA - FEB 24, 2004
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Very dark mohagany pour with a fine creamy head of tan. Lacing is very nice. Aromas are varied, starting from spice (coriander) and alcohol going to raisins or grapes and a bit of hops and bread or yeast. I have to stop for a minute with the flavors. Complex is the word that comes to mind. More malts and hops than in the nose. The raisin and grape start to fade moreso into a wine like flavor. Alcohol is strong, but is balanced by the other flavors. Spices show up as well. Coriander makes itself known. A bit of caramel is present. There is the doughiness around too. Full body, spicy palate, and a hoppy alcohol finish. Damn fine Belgian. Yes sir, I'll take another.
apoptosis (1317) - Denver, Colorado, USA - FEB 24, 2004
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Mildly sweet and malty aroma. Some dates and prunes and figs present too. Definetly a robust and well-rounded winter brew. Mild alcohol burn, but it's not unpleasant.
notalush (5388) - Denver, Colorado, USA - FEB 24, 2004
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Dark pour with a huge head, frothy and beige, good retention - extremely complex aroma, port, plums, caramel, brown sugar, chocolate - flavor contains much of the same - tastes like a good abbey dark should, but the chocolate seems to be the star of this show, all other flavors bow down to it and add their own notes to it - plums and other dark fruits - a touch of smoke makes this quite unique - a bit of an alcohol burn that will probably disappear with some age (my only real complaint) - good stuff.
BückDich (5464) - McCall, Idaho, USA - FEB 21, 2004
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: FEB 24, 2004 Delicious belgian, one of the best I've ever had. The aroma is full of some semi-sweet malts followed by a blended hop bitterness. Balance is supreme here. Pours dark brown with lots of head and lacing. The flavor is perfect with some spicy belgian charactaristics and a bit of yeasty citrus alcohol/hop balance. Finishes so smooth and balanced. this was fucking awesome, no doubt about it.
muzzlehatch (4420) - Burlington, Vermont, USA - FEB 16, 2004
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
22 oz bottle. Very dark, coca cola with a hint of yeasty matter. Rum and dark fruits in the aroma, perhaps just a hint of yeast, though very low in that area I thought. Alcohol present from the first nosing through the last peppery swallow, a bit too much, also too acidic for me. Caramel-sweet and smoky in the front of the flavor; rather simple. Not a bad beer, but none of our little group (MartinT, Rastacouere, Simon_Patrice and myself) were terribly impressed. Wonderful label though.
MartinT (8619) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - FEB 16, 2004
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: NOV 27, 2005 First try: Cigarette butts in a puddle of brown rum in the corner of a damp bar floor...Crème brûlée sweetness, adorned by plums, bathing in pungent alcohol...Somewhat overbearing bubbles carry more ashes and the dumbfoundedness as to why this is special...Another try is mandatory I guess...3.5/5
Second try: Potent molasses and nutty sweetness proclaim ample maltiness...Roasted flavor and bitterness prolongs the pleasure...Wealthy and humble, an exquisite moment compared to the previous experiences...4.2/5
dirtymike (2016) - Manchester, New Hampshire, USA - FEB 16, 2004
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Dark brown with ruby highlights in color and a large off-white head.Aroma of rasins,toffee,caramel,malt,bread,yeast.Flavor follows the aroma,starts sweet, end dry.
Rastacouere (6161) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - FEB 16, 2004
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
UPDATED: APR 27, 2004 Very dark brown hue with a light brown head that quickly turns into a ring. Aroma is rather overwhelmed by alcohol and you seriously have to pass over that flavour to be able to appreciate the rest which consists in bready dark malts (smoke, cigar) and good malt strenght (dark chocolate, plums). In mouth, it's a little more interesting, but still very strong alcohol wise for a 9% beer this highly rated. Mostly on the sweet side with touches of several dark fruits (bays, prunes, blackberries, cherries), quite yeasty also. Not much hops or bitterness to balance the alcohol sweetness which keeps going a long time in the aftertaste, but obvious notes of fireplace and ashes keep it from being too much. Body is very creamy and quite carbonated. What's up with this beer? Everyone seems to love it and every 4 of my tasting buddies were severly disappointed. Bad bottle? It didn't seem like it. Perhaps it's too young, so I'd suggest laying this down a bit before tasting it because it sure as hell is usually my type of beer.
CapFlu (4815) - Victoria, British Columbia, CANADA - FEB 15, 2004
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
(22oz bottle) Many thanks to Argo0 for this parting gift - such a nice guy! Pours a medium, yellowish-beige, non-dissipating foamy head and a near opaque red body. Average carbonation up the sides and middle of the glass. Nose of bread, yeast, caramel and bananas. Unbelievable malt and chocolate notes. Plums, brown sugar and toffee also flash the palate. Sweet malty finish. Absolutely to die for...