Oakes (15664) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - JUL 8, 2007
3.1 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
It didn’t come out of the bottle too well. Way too much foam and fizz. Eventually settled into a hazy amber. The aroma has a citric, slightly phenolic tartness...presumably what TAR alluded to has spent the subsequent five weeks becoming more pronounced as the beer has clearly continued fermenting. Underneath of that is a complex chile character punctuated by an insistent chipotle smokiness. Flavourwise...ok it’s got a lot of carbonation and some footy yeastiness, which definitely muddies things up a bit, especially the malts, which come of as a bland caramel-earth two tone. Then the chile steps forward, bringing again the complex chile of a proper mole oaxaqueño. There is lingering smokiness and some capsicum warmth at the end...mild but pleasant...I could go for more, personally. There’s some malt behind it...the earthy aspect of the malts is uninteresting of itself but plays well with the intense earthiness of the chiles. It’s a great mix of chiles - I appreciate this a LOT on that level - and it’s entirely possible the surrounding beer is well-thought-out but probably a bit too yeasty/overattenuated for its own good.
jcwattsrugger (12190) - Florida and, New Jersey, USA - JUN 9, 2008
3 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
22oz bottle@Noogfest4.0-thanks to beerguy101–pours an off white ring for a head and amber color. Aroma is medium malt, jalapeños. Taste is medium malt-smoke then jalapeños roll in like a steam roller. Interesting.
kp (10884) - Woodstock, Georgia, USA - SEP 1, 2007
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
amber, whispy beige head that swirels into creamy lace, malt aroma with a nice spicy edge, hot chili flavor on a dry smokey malt base, a balanced and smokey chipolte beer
Score: 3.2 to 3.5
sweet peppery aroma with a good balance between the strong pepper and some sweet caramel in the background,
lots of pepper flavor, lingering heat, hint of sweet malt stays in the background,
much more pepper than before
Aroma: 7/10; Appearance: 8/10; Flavor: 7/10; Palate: 7/10; Overall: 13/20
after4ever (7581) - Brier, Washington, USA - JUN 17, 2007
4.1 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
12-ounce. Thanks, Aspidites! I really flipped for this beer. Especially because so many other brewers try to make a good chili beer and either fail or just make a boring beer. Pours deep hazy amber with ruby highlights. Towering fluffy tan head. Sweet peppery nose--you really pick up the ribs of the bell pepper, that salady vegetal note. Super complex and tangy mid-palate with all kinds of plant life blending across it: cereal/malt sugars blending with peppery sweetness and heat, alongside sharp spicy hops. Really an amazing mixture of flavors that is better enjoyed than discussed, because the vocabulary of beer tasting can’t quite capture it. At least my meager version of the vocabulary can’t. Big capsicum kick on the finish and the clingy aftertaste, Wonderful stuff.
CaptainCougar (7133) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - FEB 2, 2007
3.3 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle sampled in mid-July 2006: Pours a hazy dark bronze copper with a thin-lacing off-white head. Sweet malts, fresh hops, smoke, and spicy peppery aroma. Body starts with lots of fizzy carbonation, lightly smoky flavor and a hot, spicy lingering finish. Fairly well-balanced and drinkable and I generally don’t even like spicy things.
Suttree (6075) - Knoxville, Tennessee, USA - JUN 2, 2008
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Cloudy brown, no head. Faint peppery, woodsy aroma, and the flavor is also earthy then...wait for it...wait for it... HUGE peppery explosion of flavor. Even with a small sample, heat dominates (in a good way, of course). Fun and tasty. Sampled at Noogfest Four-O. Thanks to beerguy 101 for this one.
ClarkVV (5804) - Boston, Massachusetts, USA - JUN 28, 2007
4.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
UPDATED: AUG 15, 2007 12oz bottle from KrausenJockey, opened on 5/26/07 but accidentally not consumed until 5/27/07
It was a case of getting a little too ambitious and I opened this one and then passed out before I could enjoy it. Thankfully A) I didn’t drink it then, as I probably would have not remembered this lovely beer so vividly. B) The beer was wonderfully conditioned and was in perfect shape, with a lovely appearance, despite sitting out for 20 hours with the cap off.
A deep reddish-chestnut brown beer with violet and crimson hues and a beige head that is large, well-retained and full of lacing.
Dry, crunchy malt gives glimpses of earthiness, dusty chocolate-toffee and light breadiness. Some sweet caramel hits the nose through the middle and then disappears in to a lightly spiced, moderately smokey (chipotles) finish that is neither too mild, nor too aggressive. With warming, the nose incorporates even more malt sweetness, mostly light caramel and even a pinch of some fruitiness. Medium to medium-high strength of aroma that craftily downplays its hand in the pepper department. No alcohol noted, no flaws.
A thin layer of bready malt appears at first sip, but is quickly absorbed in to a soft caramel sweetness that is flecked with hints of dry chocolate. I don’t know what creates it, perhaps the interplay of malt and pepper, but there is a transitional flavor in the middle, that is neither fully malt, nor pepper. Almost fruity, like strawberries or cherries or something. Pinches of vanilla are thrown in and then finally the pepper flavor hits on the finish, starting slowly and building to a highly flavorful and enjoyable spiciness, with light smoke and a touch of juiciness even.
What strikes me the most about this particular chili beer, after having many of them, is that it’s in no way done for novelty (or if it is, it dosent seem like it). It’s not a "HA! Let’s make a crazy hot chili beer!" where the brewer obviously forgets to still make a beer and gets extremely carried away with the chili. Nope, here there is a beer with plentiful malt character up front, passing to a complementary (assuming you like chilis) flavor on the end that balances the sweetness up front. Delicious and near perfectly done on the level of heat so that it can appeal to those not so in to spices. Other than a touch of nuttiness and/or breadiness, I didnt get the huge yeastiness that Jeff mentions. This was phenomenal on a hot day and easily the best chili beer I’ve had to-date.
decaturstevo (5788) - decatur, Tennessee, USA - JUL 13, 2008
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
A hazy brown pour with no head. Veggies and peat on the nose. Blast of smoke and heat on the flavor. Tad foamy and thin. Unusual, hot and nice. The heat wasn’t overpowering. Pretty nice.
beerguy101 (5359) - Newark, California, USA - JUN 6, 2008
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Tasted at Noogfest 4.0 (2008). This chile beer pours a medium amber color from the bottle. Small sized white foamy head. The aroma is malt, some chili and some spice. A medium bodied ale. The malts are caramel and fruity. The hops are earthy. There is an intense and clean chili flavor at the finish. It just sort of comes out of left field at you. Nice. A great beer with Mexican food. Mouthfeel is full. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly bitter and HOT!
heemer77 (5294) - Urbandale, Iowa, USA - JUN 8, 2008
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
UPDATED: JAN 2, 2010 Noogfest ’08. The body was dark copper with a khaki head. The aroma was malty with smoke and chile. The taste was very spicy, a big surprise for me. Not bad, just a shock. There was also some bread and carrots. Very well done.