daknole (11402) - Scottsdale, Arizona, USA - AUG 8, 2014 stumpyiliz (220) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - SEP 11, 2012
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Dark pour, tan head, smells of trail mix and the port barrel. Taste is tangy but this is just the flavor of the barrel. Port comes through nicely. Very well done.
Dark brown, tan head. Yuck. Somewhat sour, dry, herbal, roasty, bitter. Infected? Maybe. deekyn (1459) - San Francisco, California, USA - OCT 31, 2013
A - pours opaque cola with some off tan head. S - grains, toasted vegetal malts, light molasses, anise, caramel, burnt sugar, vanilla. Light coal, chalky chocolate and espresso. M - nice thick body. Spritzy carb. Quite tangy chewy. T - tangy raw cacao, port, wet toasted oak, up front. The palate rolls to grape juice, espresso, vegetal malts and caramel. End is dry lightly bitter earthy, chalky chocolate, vegetal malts, burnt sugar. O - this is really better than rated. Standard for the style? No. But good. Tangy and sweet with a dry ending. 3.6 cubs (10714) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - OCT 6, 2013
Bottle @ home, picked up at Wilbur’s quite a while back. Pours a black appearance with a thin light brown head. Big anise, vinous, dark grape, tangy, tar, a bit smoky aroma. Goopy, chewy, black licorice, fig, dark grape, fig flavor. Ehhh. brokensail (16645) - Dublin, California, USA - OCT 6, 2013
Bottle @ Aaron’s basement. Dark brown, ruby hints, and khaki head. Tart aroma of grape and wine. Oak, roast, licorice, and coffee. Kind of ashy and acetic as well. Flavor is sour. Wine, oak, ash, and red wine vinegar. Licorice, acetone, and plenty of roasted malt. A touch of grass, water, and coffee. peteinSD (1468) - San Diego, California, USA - JUL 4, 2013
Bottle. Black pour with an off-white head. Smells fruit with tart cherry and grapes. Perhaps some light oak. Taste is mostly tart with grapes and light roast. Light mouthfeel Almost tastes infected but maybe it’s the wine barrel influence. Okay.
emacgee (4705) - Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA - APR 30, 2013
Clean dark garnet brown pour (light for RIS). Oxidized aroma, papery, acidic coffee, alcoholic heat. No bueno. Slick in the mouth with some peppery/capsaicin character (weird). Hot and liqueur-ish. Gotta give this one two thumbs down and stop devoting time to describing its failure. JCB (3999) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - APR 7, 2013
Thanks to Ethan for sharing. Pretty dispiriting pour, dingy dark brown with quite little carbonation. Nose of weak burned coffee, turned dark fruit, considerable oxidation. Very little barrel character at all, some black pepper and vague heat along with washed out chocolate. Bleh. 3fourths (9358) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - SEP 12, 2012
bottle-conditioned 12oz. deep brown body with a medium-sized splotchy tan head. sad to say the nose is a mess of acetic acid / vinegar and sourish generic red grape with moderately strong oak, with only the slightest chocolate malt hint of the underlying stout. honestly it has the same smell as the kitchen-sink sour blends that come out of Avery these days, and if given blind I would probably guess wine-barrel aged oud bruin, it’s that tannic and acidic (not necessarily a bad thing, mind you. it’s enjoyable on some level). medium-thick body with creamy and round carbonation, assertive wood tannins and oud bruin acetic acid, growing especially noticeable in the finish. speaking of which, the finish is very characteristic of Crystal Springs: watery, thin and falling apart the instant that the carbonation washes across the tongue. so there you have it: acid, oak, something like merlot grapes, a hint of chocolate malt and a thin body. there’s little stout character and zero port character. the previous ratings make no mention of this acidity, which suggest it may be present in some bottles but not others? that doesn’t sound very likely given these are the sort of acids to come from wine barrels, not the sort of acids to come from improperly cleaning a bottle. BeerandBlues2 (13814) - Escondido, California, USA - AUG 29, 2012
Blind tasting. Pours black with a medium, creamy and frothy tan head, long retention with good lacing. Aroma is chocolate, nutty, and cookie malt with oak and port, heavy dried fruit aroma, light earthy hops. Flavor is tart dark dried fruits with vinous, port flavors, light roast and chocolate malt, oak notes, light hops and bitterness with a dry finish. Full body, medium carbonation.