TAR (2518) - Lafayette, Colorado, USA - DEC 1, 2009
2.8 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 10/20
Deep speckled auburn. Voluminous dirty-white head clings to the glass as it slowly settles. Unclean aroma of plasticlike phenols, leafy hops, plum, raisin, caramel malt (instant iced tea), pinesap and grapefruit pith. Quite yeasty with strong scents of chalk and dough. Touch of earthy roast. Soft carbonation. Influx of tacky resins generate substantial weight as they combine with the oversweet and tealike caramel malt, upfront. Resin envelops the tongue, suppressing any bright and delicate hop flavors that might otherwise emerge. Notes of tobacco fuse with a pleasingly earthy blend of earthy roast and cocoa, but many of the malt textures and vivid definition succumbs to the unyielding caramel. Hops are overly acidic, throughout. Pervasive grapefruit further contributes to the body’s flabbiness, though perceptible notes of pine emerges and cleans things up by slightly augmenting the dryness. Intensely spicy and piney, and the chalky/doughy notes link up with distant hop-derived aspirin notes to pummel the juiciness with a raspy astringency. Alcohol and the high concentration of residual sugars creates a medicinal effect toward the finish, which showcases an intense medley of juniper, pinesap and candied pecans. A mixed bag. If they ditch the caramel malt, altogether, and clean up the fermentation (doughy/chalky yeast plagues this, as is the case with many Victory beers) this could be pretty respectable. Hops are also far too brash/resinous, acidic and leafy rather than soft and succulent. Kudos for leaving it unfiltered, though!
cbkschubert (2900) - BFE, Arizona, USA - DEC 1, 2009
4 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
12 oz. bottle via trade with j12601 - Pours a clear brown color with a two finger thick light tan head that took its time to settle. Light lacing. Aroma is floral, pine, and herbal hops. Flavor is fruity sweet hops. Surprisingly, the finish is somewhat smooth and non-astringent. Medium body. A very nice beer. Thanks Jay.
Snojerk321 (2960) - San Diego, California, USA - DEC 1, 2009
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
12oz bottle from Olive Tree market. Pours a reed reddish brown with a fluffy beige head, nice lacing coated the tulip. Nose was very juicy with tons of citrus and toasted malt. Flavor hold some assertive hop bitterness followed by some citrus peel and some caramel malts, finished with medium- high bitterness.
DavidHawman (24) - Pennsylvania, USA - DEC 1, 2009
4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
UPDATED: FEB 16, 2010 Poured a deep red with a brown head. Aroma is strongly of hops with a caramel sweetness. Taste is great with strong hops, the dark malts, caramel and some cinnamon with a slight bitter finish. Alcohol is hidden extremely well. Palate is great as well with slight carbonation. Overall a very good beer with an ABV that sneaks up on you.
spkldhenlvr24 (517) - Newburgh/Buffalo, New York, USA - DEC 1, 2009
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle from VBM in Buffalo. Pours a beautiful deep, cloudy auburn, ruby body with a large long lasting biege head. Good lacing. Aroma is toasted malts, hops, fruits and sweet caramel with some faint booze. Flavor is well hopped, grapefruit, nice bitterness and sweet malts. Medium bodied, lively carbonation. Alcohol is hidden well. Easy drinking, thorough beer.
notalush (5070) - Denver, Colorado, USA - NOV 30, 2009
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
Pours a clear ruby, with a thick, lasting off-white head - strong, resinous, earthy hops hit the nose first, followed by toasted malts, roasted nuts, sticky caramel, a slight woody quality - strong bitterness, bordering on astringency - hops gradually melt into fairly sweet, toasty maltiness, a touch of caramel and toffee - a touch of spruce compliments the warming finish, as the hops swell up for one last blast of bitterness - a fairly solid beer.
Cornfield (5570) - Oak Forest, Illinois, USA - NOV 30, 2009
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Single bottle buy from the Orland Park, IL, Binny’s Beverage Depot: A very refreshing Brown DIPA. This poured a clear reddish brown body with a sustained, spongy ecru head. The aroma was filled with a fresh hoppiness - yellow grapefruit and lemon zest with a touch of pine. Beneath were traces of a dark caramel sweetness. The flavor began with a lightly toasted dark malt sweetness, but that was soon buried under a surge of hoppy tastes and a serious bitterness. The finish was dry with a prolonged citric bitterness. Nice.
DalzAle (2000) - Eden Prairie, Minnesota, USA - NOV 30, 2009
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
Clear dark brown pour, minimal carbonation and a nice caramelly, nutty and malty aroma. Flavor was big syrupy herbal hops right of the bat, then earthy malt, pepper and finished with a little (but good) alcohol warmth. Good beer for a cold MN night.
gsmitty80 (1837) - Washington DC, USA - NOV 30, 2009
3.5 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 15/20
Another sensational beer from Victory. Had this on tap at the Pittsburgh Bottleshop. Pour very dark and very thick with a strong aroma of hops. The taste was smooth and crisp with a nice balance of malts, hops and alcohol. When i was finished i had a nice warm and fuzzy feeling.
alagnak (467) - Littleton, Colorado, USA - NOV 30, 2009
3.7 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle from bvc. Really dark brown/black with a billowing head that lingers a long time. Nose is resinous, wet earth, swiss cheese and piney hops. Forgive the poetic interpretation, but I imagine standing in a field of hops near Yakima would smell like this after a thunderstorm. Taste is surprisingly heavy on chocolate to start, then an assault of piney hoppy resin and bitterness finishes. The finish is slightly slick and a little much on the roof-of-the mouth lingering biterness, but this was an enoyable one. Thanks, B.