Floback (550) - Indianapolis, Indiana, USA - AUG 21, 2008
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
Bottle from Knightly Spirits. Pours a dark brown/black coffee color with no head. This has an incredibly effervescent aroma of fruits, caramel, and old room. Flavors are sour and chocolatey, yet robust with caramel and oak wood. Very wine-like with notes of pinot noir, cranberry, blueberry, and pomegranate. Medium/low carbonation and full body. Very complex and nicely balanced carbonation with the body. Alcohol content is hidden well. An excellent brew.
bdigital (658) - Ft Wayne, Indiana, USA - AUG 7, 2008
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle: Courtesy of pepsican...thanks Andy. I don’t think I’ve ever had anything quite like this...the pour looked like some of the finest balsamic vinegar ever and the aroma was sic. Big vinous notes with some dark malts, raisins, black cherries. There seems to be a very subtle vanilla and oak tone going on but the wine-like qualities pretty much overpower them. Lightly carbonated...dry, medium body. Starts slightly sweet and wine-like and then morphs into a dark, malty, fruity finish that has notes of chocolate and oak showing through. Fine brew.
MrGGen (331) - ITALY - APR 17, 2009
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Colore molto scuro,quasi nera con una schiuma sottile.Aroma di vino con sentori di legno di quercia.Gusto leggermente alcoolico e di frutti rossi.Buona
jtclockwork (14718) - , New Jersey, USA - MAY 4, 2010
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Purplish pour. Nose is sour malt and merlot. Taste is lovely sour grape. Very wine like. Rated 8/24/08
otakuden (1783) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - DEC 7, 2010
4.4 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Appearance: pours a blend of browns, blacks, and burnt mahogany. Little to no apparent carbonation. Deep ruby port glints along the edges. No collar, film, or head with swirls revealing nothing more.
Nose: musty. Raisins, prunes, dates, and brewer’s licorice. Rustic, earthen, and slightly tart prune skins in the back. Burnt woods. Black cake mingles with black strap molasses mingles with a dark oily black essence. Gentle haze of tartness. Slightly oxidized ruby port.
Palate: light, clean, and super tart up front with plum and cherry skins; tannins, too. Plums and cherries are followed by chocolate and fudge which dries the top of my tongue. Brett is fairly dominant though never intrusive. Funk, earth, old wooden barrels, leather, and dust. Sour tingles the sides of tongue with a pleasant addition of cranberries. Amazing. Burnt root and molasses. Flavors are mostly centered in the middle atop my tongue with the sides and back catching shadowy whispers of ruby port, vintage please, and artisanal red wine vinegar. Lovely.
Final Thoughts: from Dolii Raptor to Bran Reserva, Montegioco has definitely made a huge impression. I’ve known for a while that Italy is kicking out some spectacular beers unlike anything anywhere else, drawing influence from American craft and beyond. If this is any indication of their brewing tendencies and skills…may I have another, please.
Crosling (1864) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - MAY 11, 2008
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle, Ma Che Siete Venuti a Fà, Rome, Italy. Very dark, nearly black, with a small, filmy head. Aroma shows chocolate, some oak, red wine and funk. Flavor shows red wine soaked oak, dark fruit, which leads into a long, satisfying roast-like finish. Complex, with lots of taste. This could be Italy’s most refined and best beer.
bhensonb (13985) - Woodland, California, USA - SEP 10, 2010
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
333 from Pizza Port Bottle Shop. The plastic bottle cap liner is more 3D than any I’ve ever seen. Pours quite black with a fluffy, bubbly 3/16 inch tan head. It smells like sour wine. Not vinegar. Sour wine. Near full in body with very mild carbonation. The flavor is vinous and sour. Red wine yes. Barbera? It seems too smooth for such a crude wine. Maybe oak aged Barbera (vice E&J Gallo) does become smooth. So barley wine? No way. This is a sour ale. Friggin brilliant. Right in there with Flemish sours. Perhaps a discriminator is that there seems to be a hit of sweet at the end of each sip. Or this may be too complex for my palate. Friggin brilliant!!!!!
beerguy101 (5357) - Newark, California, USA - MAR 1, 2012
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Tasted at the Triple Rock Sour and Barrel Aged Fest on 2/12/2011. This Barleywine pours an eclipse black color form a 50cl bottle. Small to medium sized white foamy head. The aroma is caramel, dark fruit, raisins, oak and wine. There is a touch of a savory flavor as well. A medium to full bodied Barleywine. The malts are fruity and sweet, raisins, oak and wine. The hops are earthy. Very smooth taste. Nicely balanced. Hints of wood and red wine. A very complex beer. I cans ee why these beer get the $$ they are asking for them. Very complex, very smooth tasting beer. Nice sipping beer. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly sweet
DocLock (9876) - Lower Pottsgrove, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 12, 2008
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle from State Line. Pours deep blackish with minimal tan head and a slow, reduced Guinness cascade. Nose is tart cherry, fig, brown sugar, sour mashy fruit, peaty malt, cacao; very nice nose on this. The taste is a bit tart, with a bevy of fruit flavors including cherry, blackberry, port, grape, raisin, brown sugar, oak, and cacao throughout. One of Italy’s top 10, perhaps top 2 or 3.
DaSilky1 (2606) - San Diego, California, USA - AUG 4, 2008
4.2 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
Cloudy muddy brown color with a congregation of large bubbles. Vinous nose of red wine, tobacco, wood, and earth. nice sour woody vinous flavors painted across a malty canvass...nice tart wood notes increase the overall earthiness of the experience. I like the rustic nature of this beer, that’s what it’s all about.