Aubrey (3356) - Bellingham, Washington, USA - NOV 11, 2001
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 17/20
Soft, smooth, and INTENSELY hopped... makes the eyes water. Piney, grassy, and earthy. Malt is not as discernible. High alcohol is hidden pretty well behind the hops. Somewhat bitter in the finish, but not as bitter as one would think with such a hoppy beer; thatís probably because a lot of the hop flavors/aromas come from the dry hopping (which doesnít impart much bitterness, if any at all).
pantanap (3323) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - AUG 8, 2008
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
22oz bottle thanks to mark!.... cloudy orange and caramel brown pour with a thin very light brown head.... caramel malts, somewhat biscuity in nature, dominated the nose. very little life left in the hops at this point... flavors were sweet and biscuity, semi-oxidized caramel malts with a tough of bitterness towards the end but nothing substantial. above average mouthfeel. as others noted, wish i could have had this fresh but glad to have tried it anyhow.
jsquire (3228) - St. Marys, Ohio, USA - JUL 30, 2005
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Out of the 3 litre bottle at the 2005 RBSG. Murky orange with big foamy head. Nose of old hops. Flavors of oxidized beer and dried fruit, with the citrus nature of the hops still identifiable. The hops are showing their age, and add my name to the chorus that say if you still have one of these, it isnít getting any better.
puzzl (3216) - New York, New York, USA - MAY 13, 2009
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle shared by EDA as part of a complete vertical. Better than 3rd and 4th anny, though that isnít exactly a hard thing to do. A bit more hoppy than the previous wet rag tasting beers, less oxidized of course, but there is still plenty of cardboard and aluminum. Mildly bitter, bright. Some corn sweetness.
Eyedrinkale (3213) - Astoria, New York, USA - FEB 5, 2004
4.6 AROMA 9/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: DEC 22, 2004 On to the good stuff. Big earthy taste, like a dried fruit salad. Orange, lime and peaches were prodominate here. Follow that up with a molasses yeast thing. Finish was a nice smoked apricot and chocolate. Canít wait to bust open the 3L now. Re-rated off of the 3L. Much of the same flavors with a less oxidized taste than the 22 oz.
zach8270 (3047) - Henrietta, New York, USA - JUN 17, 2008
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
UPDATED: DEC 20, 2008 [bottle - 22 oz] Dark orange pour with not much of a head or carbonation. Aroma is dry hops and some sour notes. I was beginning to think this bad boy had turned on me. After tasting it, I realize that it had. The flavor was not awful but it was a little off. Sour and dry hops with some citrus and a very grassy finish. I wish I wouldíve drank it earlier, and I canít in good conscience give it a low rating, although it tasted similar to the Ruination.
JohnC (3000) - Mission Viejo, California, USA - JUN 19, 2002
4.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Beautiful Hoppy flavor. Itís finish isnít as clean as their Ruination, but it has more of a full mouth finish. Great beer.
DarkElf (2988) - La Jolla, California, USA - SEP 23, 2005
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
(Draft: Stone Brewing Days 2005 at Stuffed Sandwich in San Gabriel, CA) Duvel tulip glass in hand, I walk into Stuffed Sandwich for their Stone Brewing Days 3-day festival, hoping Iíd find something cool, but oh my heavens, look what Sam has on tap! I never thought Iíd see this in bottle or on draft ever again. Well, actually, Iíve never seen it before, not ever, since this came out just as I was moving out to San Diego, and I had better things on my mind at the time than beer hunting. Anyway, Sam has filled my Duvel glass right to the top, as always. I sip a bit off so that I donít spill it, and amazingly, the head builds back to the top. I get to my table and sip some more head, and sure enough, here comes the head, continuing to form, beautifully creamy, light tan in color, and just refusing to fade even in the slightest. I have to keep drinking, and only then does the head finally give in and stay at a thin layer, but it leaves a thick, dense foam on the glass for the duration of the session to remember it by. The body is fully cloudy, amber in color, and impossible to see through, even at the edges. The nose is only lightly hoppy, so clearly the hops has softened considerably, which is to be expected for a 4-year old beer. Instead, itís very earthy and woody, sweet, solidly malty, and certainly oxidized a bit. Similarly, the flavor is malty, earthy, woody, and mushroomy, but thereís also an obvious sweet fruitiness fighting through and holding its own. Itís not hoppy at all, and in fact, itís only mildly bitter, but that bitterness does show up a bit in the finish. Alcohol isnít really noticeable to me. Medium "plus" in body, but I think much of that "plus" is due to the aging. With the earthiness, this isnít a clean beer at this point, and with the mild hoppiness toward the end, the finish isnít terribly crisp either, but this is an IPA, so who could expect it to be? So clearly this beer is past its prime, and itís not the same beer it was when fresh four years ago, but unlike many other "old" non-cellarable beers Iíve tried, this is still remarkably drinkable and very enjoyable. True, I enjoy that earthy, mushroomy flavor and aroma, but because of the solid fruitiness, this beer is more than just an oxidized, earthy, mushroomy beer. Still, I have to be fair and say that this beer, four years after being brewed, isnít as amazing as it apparently was, but Iíve had no problem finishing the entire Duvel glass. As a rating buddy of mine said to me tonight, this is easily the best 4-year old IPA Iíve ever had.
SpringsLicker (2936) - Tennessee, USA - JAN 30, 2006
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Thanks to kp for bringing this gem from his cellar! I expected to search for this one for several more years.
Pours a medium orange color with a decent head and enough body in this 4 year old IPA to lace a bit.
Muted hop aroma as would be expected, allowing the malt to come through. Earthy malt flavor with some hints of pine.
Nice, deeply bitter dry finish, that can only make me imagine what this was like in itís prime.
aracauna (2925) - Georgia, USA - JAN 29, 2006
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
This pours a cloudy amber. The aroma is full of dried apricots and a slight pine from the hops. Itís a touch grainy. The malt drops out quickly but bitterness lingers nicely.