muzzlehatch (4424) - Burlington, Vermont, USA - DEC 23, 2006
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
12 ounce bottle from Bello Vino in Ann Arbor, Michigan (December 2006) enjoyed at cellar temperature from a Corsendonk Christmas Ale glass in front of an incredibly ancient computer at 26kps at my parents’ house in Clinton, WI. Light burgundy pour, translucent/muddy, with a bounteous light taupe head, fine-bubbled and leaving copious lacing....vinous, oaky-vanilla notes are certainly present in the nose but never overpower the spicy, powerful hop profile, though it is muted a bit and caramelized malts seem stronger here than in the "regular" version; a subtle bitter orange character grows with warmth.....the body is quite bitter, not surprisingly, but I don’t really find any woody character here, at least not the soft textures I’d associate with oak aging; rather, this is even more harsh and oily-bitter than standard Bastard, potent and juicy but for me at least, too dry and astringent towards the finish to be really enjoyable....eventually the sugars do come out more and it becomes more drinkable, but the feeling is of brown sugar dumped in at the finish, rather than anything really well-balanced and integrated....full body, fairly low carbonation, a bit sticky. Mixed feelings here; I rather wish I hadn’t had to buy a 6-pack though perhaps a few months in my cupboard will help a bit. Certainly not a patch on standard Bastard on tap, which is near-divine.
DrewTaylor (154) - Michigan, USA - DEC 23, 2006
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
Pours golden amber with a good frothy white head. Smells strongly of grapefruit and hops. Extremely smooth taste of hops, evident IPA style bitterness, light body, with a crisp clean finish. Slightly woody from being oaked. Absolutly amazing beer.
ABUSEDGOAT (2352) - California, USA - DEC 23, 2006
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
UPDATED: AUG 30, 2007 Clear copper with a fairly large head and good lacing. Aroma is grapefruit, pine, wood, vanilla, caramel. Fairly straightforward, enjoyable.
pnista (1007) - Bloomington, Indiana, USA - DEC 23, 2006
4.4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 19/20
It turns out I didn’t have to beg, borrow and steal (or at least trade) to get this beer, all I had to do was ask the cashier if they had any in stock. A case hidden in the office! Anyhow, this is as pretty as AB. A deep, crystal clear mahogany with a sizeable relatively dense offwhite to cream colored head. The nose is particularly delicate. Don’t get me wrong, the hop assault is there in full force, though measurably subdued with a lovely woody oaky to earth character creating something a bit fruity. Sweet rounded malts with tannic (almost red wine like) cherry sorts of notes. A hint of alcohol, very fragrant. I wouldn’t mind spilling some of this in the car to cover up the mildew smell. The palate is of course top notch. Good foamy density, but nice viscosity even absent any carbonation. The flavors are a beatiful piece of work on this beer. I really feel like that while this is a big beer, it is so mellow and delicate so as to allow the drinker to detect, gasp, complexity! I’m not just having my tastebuds numbed. Instead, this is like one of those whirly-ma-gigs that parents put over their toddlers cribs. The range of flavors and their combinations really stimulates and makes more keen my senses. Anyway, a well rounded malt, going from light and sweet to toasty with caramel and all manner in between. The balance is immediately obvious with those tannic cherry like aspects once again balancing nicely. Subdued grapefruit seed bitterness is balanced with the malt, along side the oak. I really feel like the oaking and the aging make this beer what it is. The oak fills in where the hops have started to trail off. The finish is a floral to fruity sort of hop with hints of everything from grapefruit to pineapple to cherry. The finish is all tannic oak, and works well to balance out lingering sweetness. This is so clean for a beer with so much going on. I really enjoy this, and I’d love to find me some more in the future! What a joy! Better still, the warmer it got, the more I seemed to enjoy it.
tcruicks (282) - Bloomington, Indiana, USA - DEC 23, 2006
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
It looks and smells nicer than non-oaked arrogant bastard. The oak/ general wood flavors come out most in the finish, and adds a nice touch. Its hoppy, bitter. Some fruit and caramel in the aroma. Full bodied. I like it better than the original.
xproudfoot (750) - Paleolithic, Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 22, 2006
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
12oz bottle. Sensual pine grapefruit resin, oranges, and lemon rind in the nose. Cloudy amber beer with short/partial tan sponge head. wood-vanilla flavors with sharp pine-cheddar grapefruits. bitter but rounded palate with a lasting finish. Very nice, maybe not the hugest improvement over AB but, still excellent and a nice contrast.
jtw (1089) - farmington, Michigan, USA - DEC 21, 2006
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
12 oz bottle. pours the same as its un-aged brother, a caramel-amber with a little ring of head that doesn’t really diminish much. hops first, with dark malt behind and only a little bit of oak in the aroma. not too different from the regular, save for a tiny bit of woodiness in the finish. no elements of bourbon or merlot or alcohol or port or anything, just slightly more tannic than its brother. very good - i think i like it a little more than its brother.
Sregnar35 (971) - Rotterdam, New York, USA - DEC 21, 2006
4.3 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
Amazing stuff. Poured dirty red with a great lasting head. Aroma is musty and sweet. Flavor is sour, tart, bitter, then sweet and tangy.
drewbeerme (3879) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - DEC 20, 2006
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: DEC 21, 2007 12oz bottle released 6weeks ago. pours mahogany with fluffy head. looks tasty. aroma of PNW hops with malty backbone, smells sweet with vanilla and maple syrup aroma. flavor is very malty with loads of PNW hop flavor without being overly bitter. very subtle oak characteristic but does add a good amount of vanilla. balanced to perfection. the drinkability is very high and i believe you could drink this at all occasions. with food, as desert, mowing the lawn, a winter warmer, a first, middle, and/or last beer of the night. too me that’s rare.3.9
11/14/07. 12oz 2006 vintage, cellar aged 13 months.nice creamy head that lasted. nose has some nice vanilly and oak with citrus hop notes that are toned down a bit. flavor are vanilly, light oak, and subtle aged malt-tobacco notes. this isn’t any better, but it actually held up pretty nicely. i’ll try it again at 16months but i’ll be pretty shocked if it is still tasty at 24...3.6
BuckNaked (1230) - Tempe, Arizona, USA - DEC 20, 2006
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
In bottle at various gatherings and on tap multiple times at Papago: Pours to a dark, opaque brown colored body with a medium tan colored head. The aroma is a bit toned down from the original Arrogant Bastard, however it still shows a nice blend of pine-scented hops alongside caramel, malt cola, and some aromatic oak wood. The taste shows plenty of oak, which blends nicely with the pine-like hops and sweet caramel, sweet malt flavors. Medium-full bodied, moderately carbonated, finishes with some lasting oak and hop notes.