Allagash 11th Anniversary Ale

RATINGS: 223   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.73/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 276   ABV: 9.2%
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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OhioDad (2492) - Hilliard, Ohio, USA - SEP 7, 2006
750ml bottle at Columbus tasting 2.0. I think Sliffy brought this one. Pours dark amber with a short offwhite head and a slightly cloudy body. Aroma is fantastic good citrus hops over caramel malts. Some bread, wood, and lots of spice. Flavor is cistrus grapefruit hops, caramel malts, some spice, oak, a little candi sugar there as well. Smooth balanced palate with good medium body. This is a pretty nice brew overall.

scraff (2125) - Baltimore, Maryland, USA - SEP 7, 2006
Deep rusty orangey brown, creamy light tan head. Complex nose of spiced candied apple and fig, with softer tones of bread, wood, and lemon. After the aroma, the flavor is a bit of a let down. None the less, still nicely done with soft tart citrusy notes that are followed closely by a spicy dry cedar undertone. Additional touches of fruitness play out here and there. Medium bodied, soft carbonation, dry bitter, citric-like finish. Nice, but not my favorite from them....

bfeldmann (1050) - Wilmington, Delaware, USA - SEP 6, 2006
Poured a dark amber color with good lacing and okay head. Aroma was fruity, some spices and some caramel. Glavor was the same with some candy sugar coming out. Mouthfeel was good, nice creamy finish to it.

Rastacouere (6177) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - SEP 6, 2006
Dark auburn, looking good and the head is off-white and mostly diminishing. Sharp, pointy fruitiness hits the nose giving a rather heady liquor-like feel. Earth and concentrated grapes are omnipresent, rendering a rather sweet impression. Wood planches, sand, chocolate, burnt toffee.. an interesting flavor range, but put together, it feels a bit chaotic and just immensely sweet. A bit unpolished drying out attempt where the finish grows kinda ropey and just can’t bring down the sweet mammoth. Medium body, silky and sticky texture, long rooty finish.

goldtwins (4319) - Nesconset, New York, USA - SEP 6, 2006
Poured an almost clear ruby-amber color with a small off-white head. Belgian yeasty aroma with notes of bubble gum, caramel and alcohol. The flavor was yeasty and spicey. Nice warmth in the chest but no real alcohol taste.

TAR (2802) - Blue Ridge Mountains, North Carolina, USA - SEP 6, 2006
Hazy auburn. Small, dense bubbles nestle into a thin cap of foam. Concentrated rocky candy, fruity yeast, coriander, and stewed peach aromatics. Alcohol overshadows the slightly dusty yeast and strawlike malts. Fuzzy carbonation lends soft bubbly prickles. Sharp alcohol pummels the subtleties with a fiery sting which is energized by coriander and candy sugar. Utter lack of dryness fails to unveil any lurking brightness by washing away the sweetness or chewy yeast, and clears no room whatsoever for any polished flavors to take foothold and flourish. Snappy phenols and peppery esters starkly emerge, only to be enveloped instantly by the wet and mushy body. Alcohol and body are oppressively hot and viscous, and although warmer temperatures don’t quell the stinging warmth, the malts do take on a fat, plummy character which augments the body with added texture. Stewed peaches spawn a late touch of tartness, but do little to negate the sweetness. More of the same in regards to the finish which remains weightily yeasty, overbearingly sweet, and ablaze with alcohol. My high hopes for this have been dashed, as it’s far too yeasty, wet/sweet, and alcoholic. A laudable concept and effort, but nowhere near up to par in comparison to their lovely 10th Anniversary brew.

User37895 (3085) - - SEP 5, 2006
Not a bad showing, poured a red amber orange slightly amber color with a decent head and ok lacing. The aroma was of spices and some caramel and fruits. The flavor was caramel with some nice spicing (coriander), earthy malt/beer flavors, light floral notes, and some candy sugar. Nice balance, not overly sweet, yet not hopped, either. Mouthfeel was full for the style, a competent brew, somewhat creamy. Allagash is winning me over and doing ok on their big bottles.

MartinT (10155) - Montreal, Quebec, CANADA - SEP 4, 2006
UPDATED: SEP 27, 2006 Any first impressions?
-Misty clouds float atop the dusk orange.
-Flourishing herbal hops and garden vegetables (notably green pepper) intrigue the nostrils.
-Caramel and honey sweetness lathers the earthy hoppiness.
-The round maltiness isn’t exactly agreeing with the expansive carbonation.

What if you dig deeper?
-Candied apples increase the complexity of sweet end of the flavor spectrum.
-Alcohol’s a little too hot off the bat for my liking, and may be a sign of its young age.
-It finishes in a burst, with rocking fruitiness, deep sweetness, herbal hoppiness, and dashing alcohol heat; not quite cohesive for now.
-Another intriguing experiment from Allagash, somewhat reminiscent of their Interlude, but less successful imho at its early stage in its evolution.

Bottle; the one batch, I guess.

hopscotch (11439) - Vero Beach, Florida, USA - SEP 4, 2006
UPDATED: FEB 27, 2007 Bottle... NTB Ernesto Festo ’06... This beer rocks! ... Mostly clear burnt orange ale with a small, fizzy, white head. The nose is perfumey and fruity with notes of red wine, wood and banana… mildly acetic. The flavor starts off hot and sticky-sweet, but ends up nearly balanced. Medium sherry-like. Lightly acidic with a dash of salt. Full-bodied with a milky mouthfeel and lively carbonation. Lengthy, malty, vinous finish. World class beer!

tobias (208) - West Chester, Ohio, USA - SEP 1, 2006
750 ml bottle: pours a murkey orangish brown color with a small off white head. aroma is a dry apple, grape and citrus with faint hints of caramel, kinda sour. Flavors PINEAPPLE, grapes, citrus, light malts with hints of caramel. A nice balance of sweet and dry. The finish very much reminds me of pineapple upside down cake. its a good solid beer, but @ $15-16 a bottle its not somehitng i would get very often.

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