Allagash 11th Anniversary Ale

 
overall
98
97
style
RATINGS: 223   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.73/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 276   ABV: 9.2%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
To acknowledge this year’s anniversary, our 11th, Allagash’s brewers decided to use a champagne yeast for both the primary and secondary fermentations. This beer was brewed with both Cascade and Northern Brewer hops and copious amounts of Belgian Aromatic Malt to achieve its vibrant garnet color and unique, malty palate. At a hefty 9% ABV, the alcohol in this brew is balanced by a light sweetness, a full-bodied mouth feel and a gentle, lingering hop character. Just prior to bottling, when there is no carbonation present in the beer, a fresh dose of sugar and yeast is added. After bottling, the beer is aged in our temperature-controlled cellar, where the yeast ferments the sugar and naturally carbonates the beer. This process, known as méthode champenoise, is the same traditional process we use for all of our bottled beers. The batch of 11th Anniversary Ale was bottled in May of '06 - 950 cases, six bottles in each case and is the only batch that will be available. Its aroma is redolent of red licorice, nutmeg, wild apple, and hard candy. Its taste is malty with date and fig notes with a finish that is crisp, striking a balance between dry and fruity. We suggest serving this rustic brew at cellar temperature. Our 11th Anniversary Ale would make a perfect addition to foods such as roast duck and venison, or with desserts like pumpkin pie and apple cobbler

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4.1
CaptainCougar (7634) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - SEP 18, 2006
Pours a clear copper ruby with mahogany tints and a nice, thin, wispy, spotty-lacing off-white head. Sweet caramely biscuity malty aroma has good bready Belgian yeasty presence with some mild grapefruity hoppiness. FIrst sip is of sweet biscuity toffee and mild grapefruit bitterness with a healthy dose of yeast and good carbonation. Well-balanced and very complex, but should improve with some age. Another nice Belgian strong from Allagash.

3.2
jeffc666 (1984) - Fairfax, Virginia, USA - SEP 17, 2006
Hazy orange-ruby colored body topped by a small bubbly light tan head. The aroma is herbal with light sweetness. Pretty plain actually. Flavorwise things are a bit better, the herbalness is still present as is some fruity sweetness. A bit harsh in the palate with prickly carbonation. Lacks the usual yeast punch that I like in this type of beer. The alcohol is present as some numbness of the gums. Decent though not up to the usual Allagash standards.

3.9
TURDFERGUSON (4068) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - SEP 17, 2006
Pour is deep amber with a medium sized off-white head that dissipates within minutes. Nose reveals hints of brett, grapes, apples, spices, malt, and slight hops. Flavor is a bit more complex than the aroma with tart hints of fruitiness, a little band-aid funk, nutmeg, and a slight alcohol burn. Plenty of carbonation and sweet malts makes this medium bodied belgian strong stick to the palate rather nicely. A bit pricey at $15 a pop, but I really dont mind supporting Rob and Allagash as they have done wonders for the advancement of my palate in the last 2 years. Another unique beer from allagash. Definitely worth a try. As mentioned in the commerical desciption, I think this beer would pair wonderfully with rich foods.

4
jmuhops (669) - Winchester, Virginia, USA - SEP 17, 2006
UPDATED: JUN 23, 2008 Pours garnet with a mid-sized off-white head. The initial whiff reeks of sparkling apple cider and good old Belgian mustiness. Subsequent sniffs reveal pear, banana, peach, grape, and a nice helping of horseblanket. Some autumnal spiciness (nutmeg, allspice, etc.) is present, as well as a candy sweetness. The flavor is as fruity as the aroma, but it comes in the form of plum, fig, and grape and is joined by an even more pronounced mustiness. It turns into a straight champagne taste just before the swallow, which leaves a dry, Belgian/champagnois finish. There is some warming down the throat, and the alcohol is evident in the flavor as a dry, leathery taste, but it definitely adds to the brew. The flavor is a small letdown after the aroma, but this is still an excellent and (need I say it?) unique beer. I love these Allagash guys.

UPDATE 6/23/8: Aroma is sharper, more pear and tart apple, with a little less sweetness. Flavor is rounder, with a little more of that leathery alcohol and less alcohol heat. -1 aroma, +1 flavor.

3.6
kmweaver (3208) - Petaluma, California, USA - SEP 14, 2006
Light golden-brown appearance, yellow edges with slight head retention and lacing. Maple syrup, honey, and some tartness showing in the aroma; also pineapple (or a similar citrus) in a complicated nose that, sadly, barely fills the glass. Lots of carbonation; crisp, almost abrasive on the tip of the tongue. Plenty of spice, white pepper, coriander (also showing in the nose) across a somewhat-acidic belgian profile. The spice and yeastiness of a tripel. I’m not taken by the entire package, and it finishes slightly hot.

4.1
muenster (345) - Sevierville, Tennessee, USA - SEP 13, 2006
UPDATED: JUL 23, 2007 Bottle split with NachlamSie. Pours a very nice cloudy red/amber. Aroma is full of sweet fruits and malt. Flavor has the sour quality of a flemish, but it is matched with a sweet cherry and malt flavor. This beer also has a strong warming effect, and would make for fine winter drinking.

3.8
NachlamSie (3572) - Denver, Colorado, USA - SEP 13, 2006
Bottle thanks to Muenster. Pours a vibrant, hazy ruby with a white head. The aroma is rich and vinous. It has some slightly sour,cloth scents amid sweet licorice, cherry, and grapes. Nice and tart in the mouth with noticeable alcohol. The burn seems a tad intense for 9.2%, but it comes across in a welcome, warming fashion and mixes completely appropriately with the complex bittersweet, spiced notes. It’s semi-dry throughout, but finishes on a sweet/sour flavor like gingersnap cookies and berries. Allagash does it again.

3.7
ABUSEDGOAT (2852) - California, USA - SEP 13, 2006
Thanks to kmweaver for this. Didn’t know what to make of this, because I was having it with steak.. and with the steak it was a very bland and alcoholic brew. However, after dinner on its own it started to shine. I decided to base my rating more heavily towards after dinner since I thought it was unfair to downgrade its scores because of something Allagash has no control over. So, poured a murky orangish brown body with a small head and blah lacing. Aroma was spiced (coriander) with some fruity notes as well as caramel and a hint of pepper. Flavor has some alcohol in the finish and is fairly sweet. I’m happy they didn’t make it 11% because of the year or whatever.. 9 is already high enough. Flavors came together well, especially after about an hour. Almost a sticky feel. Good, not great. If I rated this with the steak and the sweet flavored steak sauce it woulda been more like 7/3/6/3/12.

3.2
DCJack (187) - Alabama, USA - SEP 13, 2006
wow is this overpriced $14/bottle the guy at Whole Foods assured me it was worth it said he had to try it as part of his job. didn’t have to pay for it, obviously he didn’t tell me what he smoked first

3.8
DocLock (11048) - Lower Pottsgrove, Pennsylvania, USA - SEP 12, 2006
Bottle from Super Saver. I’ve been seeking this for a while now, and it is not often that I get stoked for a beer release. The cork didn’t hit the ceiling, but got close. The pour was hazy coppery ruby colored, with 1-finger off-white head. The aroma was of tart fruit, hops, some funky cobwebby malt, caramel, oaky merlot, cognac. The flavor was earthy peaty malt up front, with emerging dark fruit, spice, citrus, hops, and some apple and mango notes as it warmed. It stays on the tart side throughout, and maintains a solid palate complexity and heft. You really need to get ya some of this.


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