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RATINGS: 224   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.56/5   SEASONAL: Special   IBU: 46   EST. CALORIES: 261   ABV: 8.7%
Named in honor of the doggy denizens of Brussels, this hybrid beer is a mix of what we love best in a big, roasty stout, but fermented with a Belgian yeast, which brings out a beautiful, fruity nose.
This relatively new sub-style combines Belgian, American and English influences to create a beer whose total is more than equal to the sum of its parts. Hereís how Zinneke breaks down and adds back up. Start with a strong stout. This is the Big Beer Series after allÖ then ďBelgianizeĒ it by altering the grain bill and fermenting the wort with a Trappist yeast strain. We backed off the heavy caramel and roasted malts to create a more complimentary flavor profile for the yeast, which contributes fruity esters and a light body. These parts combine to create a beer with dark color and light body with prevalent flavors of dark fruits, vanilla and toffee, while subtle chocolate flavors appear in the finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
rbrazell (1698) - Florida, USA - MAR 20, 2013
Bottle from Market Square. Black pour with a frothy tan head. Aroma of dark fruits, toasted bread, fruity yeasts, ash, earth, roasted malts, oak and light chocolate. Fruity yeasts up front fading into bitter sweet chocolate, ash, oak, with some chalkiness coming in through the finish. Not bad.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
nuplastikk (5794) - Madison, Wisconsin, USA - MAR 19, 2013
22oz bomber courtesy of Anndiesel. Burgundy caramel brown-black body, oily beige head. Huge chocolate caramel taste, quite thick and sugary. Really unique with the fruity undercurrents of the Belgian yeast. The moderate ABV helps spotlight the big, rich malt and barrel flavors. Some Caribbean Stout tendencies but way better in quality. Captures the essence of an odd style, the Belgian Stout.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
jstraw (1965) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAR 14, 2013
Draft at Jerryís. Black with big, foamy, cappuccino brown head / Mild, medicinal nose of toast, coffee, and cocoa / Medium to full body, a touch thin, some chewiness, acidic, very hoppy to point of astringency, with bitter finish / Flavors of burnt coffee, grass, bittersweet chocolate, banana, and prune / Lacks the fruit and body expected of an imperial. More of the character of a regular stout; however, as mentioned, the dryness is a little out of balance.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Dorwart (2541) - Robbinsville, New Jersey, USA - MAR 11, 2013
Decent head of varying sized and sloppy bubbles. Roasted grains, grapes, sweet malts and some licorice and molasses. Color is a very dark brown. Lively in the mouth. Complex flavor with some smoke, roasted grains, vanilla, light butterscotch, raisins and a bit of chocolate. Flavor is pretty smooth and the abundant flavors present minimize the roastyness in the brew which is a good thing. Minor dryness and a hint of tartness at the finish. I am really enjoying this brew. Another very good beer from Smuttynose.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 12/20
Dragonfly1 (500) - Colorado, USA - MAR 9, 2013
Thanks M, anniversary beer to share. Dark black in my cab glass, aroma has spice notes reminiscent of a Belgian Dubbel, along with a roasted dryness and cappucino foam. First sip is burnt coffee beans, light smoke, and bitterness at the finish, with some sweetness and heat from the barrel aging. Dryness predominates though, with the smoke even more prevalent as this warms. Body is thinner than it should be for tbe style. Not bad, but quite a number of flavors going on, somewhat conflicting with each other.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
nsquishee (638) - Richfield, Minnesota, USA - MAR 3, 2013
Pours a dark brown with a frothy, tan head. Smells like dark roast malts, chocolate and vanilla. Tastes dry with medium sweetness and finishes with a roasty bitterness. Flavors of chocolate, vanilla, barrel, and a bit of bourbon. Not bad.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
brian60625 (746) - Illinois, USA - MAR 2, 2013
Shared bomber. Bready, floral aroma. Muddy brown appearance and an off-white head. Herbs, yeast, mild earthiness, and a small layer of vanilla in the taste. Very drinkable and undetectable abv. Ho-hum flavor delivery. Medium-to-light body, a bit watery and medium carbonation. Overall, I was intrigued by the idea of a Belgian-style imperial stout aged in bourbon barrels(!), three style components that Iíd hoped would explode when combined, like differently flavored neutrinos freakishly colliding in an ominously glowing nuclear reactor, but alas the outcome was less dynamic than the sum of its parts. Itís pretty much, just, well, eh, ok.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
kramer (5910) - Sunbury, Pennsylvania, USA - FEB 28, 2013
Bottle. Pours a clear dark brown body with a nice creamy tight bubbled light brown head that had excellent retention. The nose is quite good and complex, the roasty and burnt malts mingle nicely with the fruitiness from the yeast while the bourbon barrel character stays nicely in the background. Thereís a little light wood and vanilla if you try, but itís clearly dominated by the yeast. The flavor is on the sweeter side yet itís not terribly sweet, the roast and burnt caramel start things off, followed by the fruitiness from the yeast. The finish is a combo of alcohol heat and light bourbon mixed with vanilla. I think itís a bit on the thin side for me, this could use a little more body and thick chewiness to help temper the alcohol a bit. Not bad overall, but it doesnít quite match up to Allagash Black.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Scipio (837) - Palatine, Illinois, USA - FEB 25, 2013
Pours a very deep brown, almost black, with a full, foamy tan head. Aroma is mostly roasted malts, along with chocolate, bubblegum, and licorice. The taste has a good deal of caramel in there. Chocolate is still quite pronounced, but it isnít as roasty as was my first impression. I get a little bit of a grape flavor underneath it all, which comes out much more at the end. The body is medium, while it has a full texture. The aftertaste is chocolate and grapes. This isnít all that bad, but I do find this a little dull. I expected more from this.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 14/20
Braudog (6377) - Yorktown, Virginia, USA - FEB 24, 2013
Bottle. The aroma is sweet and malty, almost malt-ball-ish. It drinks with a bit of a sweet kiss, Iím afraid I donít get any bourbon aging at all. But itís still an enjoyable quaff for a cold winter day ... rich and toasty, and carrying a definite kick. (#4945, 2/13/2013)

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