hastingsbass (3) - USA - DEC 20, 2009 does not count
4.1 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 18/20
Rich caramel flavor with a very slight alcoholic bite at the end. While the malt is predominant the brew is not sweet due to the rye. This brew has a distinct hoppiness more in line with a double IPA. The head is a dense, rocky tan lasting to the end of the glass. The beer is red-brown very slightly hazy . This is a full bodied, creamy beer. I truly wish this was a seasonal brew rather than a one time commemorative–remarkable.
auerbrau (2946) - Peace Dale, Rhode Island, USA - OCT 14, 2009
3.7 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 16/20
22oz Bottle. Thanks Sean! Flickr(http://www.flickr.com/photos/26049401@N Aroma gives a ruddy, very Barleywine-like, slightly-old hop aroma. Crystalline, sugary, and a good bit alcoholic. Classic strong ale profile. Pours a well-hazed florid amber, with a super-soft creamy khaki head, that just bubbles and laces so nicely. Flavor reveals more of the body and the hops. Some graham cracker, cookie dough, and vanilla peak through a misty and cloudy veil of nearing peak hops. This is one of those beers that easily blurs the line between Barleywine, Double IPA, Strong Ale, and Double Red Ale. It’s got a signature west coast Double Amber hoppiness, but the volume would need to be turned up a bit to hold to style. The hops are edging quite dusty. I’ve never been good at digging the Rye out of most rye beers, but this one is especially hard to get and extra spiciness or fruitiness from the rye. It’s a solid, hoppy strong ale that could do with a touch more hops.