MasterSki (8) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAR 21, 2010
4.8 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
2006 version, purchased at Oliver Twist. I’ve got the ’07 waiting for the right tasting event back home. Aged in Mackymyra single malt whiskey barrels if I’m not mistaken. Served in a snifter. The bottle was given to me WAY too cold, so I let it warm for a bit.
A - First, I don’t generally dig snifters for my RIS consumption - they generally reduce head volume by quite a bit, and my favorite brews don’t benefit much from the aroma "retention". In any case, it had a late-rising dark mocha, even slightly red, half-finger of foam that dissipated pretty quickly to a ring with a few bubbles at the surface and some "legs". Pitch black - there’s some pretty lace that’s generated with each sip but it quickly slides down the edges of the glass and back into the abyss. It actually looked a lot like Dave’s (d0b) pour of the Cigar City 110K+OT in my Darkness snifter. I’m going to give it the benefit of the doubt, but if I get subpar head volume in a different vessel next time I may dock this a half point.
S - Sweet Jesus - this thing smells epic. Huge whiskey, vanilla, oak, dark fruits, honey, roasted malts, tobacco, semi-sweet chocolate, coffee, molasses, and probably all the other descriptors used by my reviewing colleagues. The closest comparison I can think of was the incredible BA Decadence ’07, but this brew brings a slight sour note to the table that is almost a little reminiscent of the most recent Perseguidor (batch 4). I’m not sure how much time this brew sits in the barrel, or whether Swedish whiskey is more conducive to "bugs" but it’s a wonderful addition that adds a touch of depth and richness that can be lacking in other BA beers. There’s not a trace of astringent alcohol either.
T - OK - you can pretty much taste everything listed in the smell, as there is really no drop-off in complexity. Whiskey, vanilla, wood, bittersweet chocolate, dark fruit, roastiness - they’re all here. Near the back end of the palate it fleetingly moves into BA barleywine territory somehow, with the burnt molasses flavor in there, but then it finishes with huge tannins and oak - like on par with Toronado 20th here. I’m at a loss here, because I keep picking up slight sour beer elements that my fellow colleagues didn’t mention - perhaps this is caused by the age, or the barrel used? In any case, it’s as if someone took an amazing BA beer like Decadence and spiked it with a touch of Consecration or something.
M - There’s a little heat to go with the full silky smooth body and lots of stickiness. The residual feel is that "I’ve been licking a piece of wood" kind of thing that shows up in barrel-aged brews. Fairly mild carbonation. No complaints here.
D - This is the only place I can really knock this brew. I was worried the 250ml bottle wouldn’t be enough for me to really enjoy and reflect on, but it was plenty. The alcohol is well hidden, but the buzz creeps up pretty fast. Also, the heavy tannic finish and the somewhat mind-blowing flavor depth make this a true evening-ender. But what an evening!
It’s not very often that a brew comes along that changes my perception of what a style can do. I’m not sure if the slight sour notes were intentional, or a by-product of the barrel aging process, but any beer that marries the best of brews like BA Decadence, Parabola, and Bell’s BB Double/Cream Expo blend with stuff like Toronado 20th and Persguidor opens up my mind and palate to the amazing possibilities of beer. I understand this stuff is hard to get, but it should be tried be every beer lover at least once.
JK (5809) - St. Louis Park, Minnesota, USA - OCT 8, 2016
4.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Big thanks to craig for sharing. Black. Nearly still. Low carbonation. Complex. Chocolate. Some sauce, a little bit tart, earth. Very light bourbon in the flavor. Rich, smooth palate.
GlasgowTAD (1389) - Glasgow, SCOTLAND - OCT 1, 2016
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Bottle thanks Jean van Garvie of the UK! Pours deep brown with some bubble activity but no head to speak of. Aroma is vanilla, oak, fudge, caramel. Taste is vanilla sweet, fudge sweet, caramel sweet, oak, some raisins, some soya sweet. Syrupy body with an oily mouthfeel.
linusb (899) - SWEDEN - JUL 18, 2016
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
A: Deep dark brown with a thin brown lacing. N: Molasses, soy, dark chocolate T: Coffee, espresso, sherry notes and just a touch of dark berries. O: Nice bitterness and nice light sweet notes. Probably seen better days, but still very nice!
ineedbeer (1859) - Oakland, California, USA - MAY 16, 2016
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 17/20
2005 vintage bottle at Akkurat.
Aroma has lots of chocolate, roast, tobacco and leather. Some light dark fruit notes with some faint bourbon and oak.
Pours a very thick, motor oil black with a small, thick dark mocha head. Sheets of alcohol.
Flavor has a medium light sweet chocolate note with some balanced roast. Some tobacco and leather with some oxidation. The oxidation works really well with the beer adding some light honey sweetness. Hints of dark fruit and licorice. Medium bitterness. A hint of the alcohol and oak.
Mouthfeel is full bodied with a medium ow carbonation. Low astringency and low alcohol warmth.
Overall, this has aged beautifully. Great malt notes with hints of alcohol. Very lucky and thankful to have tried this.
martin00sr (2785) - Haderslev, DENMARK - JAN 22, 2016
4.9 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
2006 version.OhMyFukenGod. Pitch black. no head. Black berries and light cocoa aroma, slightly oxidised but in a good a way. Light Tobacco, sweet and jammy. Flavour has sweet black currant, light sweet licorice, sweet tobacco. Clear but well balanced alcohol. Perfect! Fuken perfect! Thanks MiP for dropping a FUKEN NEUTRON BOMB!
Bamsen78 (5071) - Sønderborg, DENMARK - JAN 22, 2016
5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
Bottle. Pours cloudy very dark brown with airy tan head. Clear aroma of malt, roast and chocolate, with hints of coffee and faint dusty touches. Sweetish, chocolatey flavour with notes of roast, malt, caramel and fruit and perfectly added coffeelike hints. Faint touches of nuts and fruit, perfectly complementing the absolute orgasm. Coffee-chocolate-lactose-estery aftertaste. Goddamn, I’d kill for a bottle of it!!!! Timeless. The absolute and ultimate wonder of the known world. I could just as well logg off RateBeer for ever now. Thank you, MiP. I am totally lost for words.
Benzai (14282) - Oirschot, THE NETHERLANDS, NETHERLANDS - OCT 6, 2015
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Bottle [huge thanks for this trade Jerohen!] @ weekly tasting shared with Dutchdrebus. 2006 bottle, so 9 years old. Very curious how this held up. Opque pitch black color, average to medium sized dark brown head that lasts for quite a long time. Aroma is malts, dark chocolate, oak, roasted malts. Taste malts, roasted malts, dark chocolate, oak, light bitter, lightly liquorice. Smooth texture, medium body, soft carbonation.
DutchDrebus (5612) - Oirschot, NETHERLANDS - OCT 6, 2015
4.5 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Thx for sharing this benzai! Brewed december 2006. Sick. Black colour with a small brown head. Smells roasty, chocolate, coffee, quite a bit of liquorice, wood. Tastes sweet, roasty, slightly honey, ’honingdrop’ (Dutch kind of liquorice), slightly vanilla, moccha and chocolate. It’s probably past its prime but it’s still a great brew. Full body, soft carbo.
andrepintado (2773) - Lisbon, PORTUGAL - SEP 10, 2015
4.9 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
25cl thank to omhper. Thanks a lot Per! 2006 version. Color is dark. Thin brown head. Medium body, and spicy long finish. Medium sweetness. Medium to long bitterness. Aroma is fresh, chocolate, coffee, honey, grapes. Flavour is brandy, honey, wine, coffee, roasted, dried fruits, vanilla, wood, smoke.
Gurthnar (5020) - Bratislava, SLOVAK REPUBLIC - MAY 13, 2015
4.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 19/20
2007 bottle served at exactly 14C. Aroma lots of complex soft roasty notes, lots of chocolate, fruits, alcohol. Taste is almost flawless. Rich malty flavours, sweet, caramel, chocolate, biscuity. Very very tasty, sweet treat, excellent beer.