overall
95
93
style
RATINGS: 1054   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.64/5   SEASONAL: Special   EST. CALORIES: 300   ABV: 10%
COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
A big, Belgian-style Wit brewed with coriander and orange peel and fermented with Pinot Noir juice. After fermentation a fraction of the batch is aged in Oregon Pinot Noir barrels, and another fraction is aged on oak staves. The beer is blended together before packaging. This has been one of our most popular Limited Edition beers at both our Rehoboth Beach, DE brewpub and at festivals. It successfully marries the refreshing citrusy qualities of a Belgian-style white beer with the robust complexity of a bold red wine.

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3.6
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
ClarkVV (6539) - Boston, Massachusetts, USA - MAY 11, 2007
Feb 2007, 750mL bottle drunk on 5/2 and 5/3/07
The moment youve all been waiting for has arrived! A new unfiltered DFH beer! You can certainly imagine my excitement, as their old unfiltered offerings used to be some of my favorite beers.
Even the recent, filtered special releases have shown great appearances, but this one seems to have a bit more lasting head retention and even better lacing qualities. The light haze and thick layer of sediment on the bottom of the bottle invoke great nostalgia! Deep amber hues mix with black cherry and some magenta-fuschia tints, while the head is a pink-tinged beige, very large and dense.
Tart, very piquant pinot notes open up the nose, reminding me very much of cranberries, while soft, but very strongly supportive base malts give a good dose of vanilla-creaminess. Even a touch of doughy/breadiness, giving the nose a bit more heft. It almost begins to taste citric, like blood orange or juicy tangerine notes, but the pinot notes unfold on the finish and hold the aroma in a very tart-but-juicy fruitiness that is augmented by phenolic yeast activity producing black and white pepper and light, very manageable clove. Medium to medium-high strength of aroma, only a light alcohol warming. Maybe a slight trace of fusels with warming, but its very marginal if so. My overall impressions are pretty positive. Im not in love with the pinot, finding it just a bit forceful and obviously nowhere near as elegant as if it had aged soley in a pinot barrel, but theres plenty of malt and interesting yeast notes, with the barrel-aging very tastefully done; not pumping out too much tannin or oak.
The first thing that strikes me about the flavor: Wow, this is a nicely balanced beer! Im so used to tons and tons of caramel or other medium-malt sugars in DFHs big beers by now that this is a breath of fresh air. Certainly, the malt is still quite present, and does have its share of sweetness, but its appropriate and well-attenuated, leaving the finish dry and full of tart, pinot acids and light oak character. Again, Id greatly prefer that this beer had no pinot concentrate added, and just be aged in the pinot barrel, as the concentrate comes off a bit tacky, but theres still some fun yeast phenols on the finish, with a prominent anise note and light earthiness. A bit of biscuity maltiness adds some crispness, while light acids and tannins linger on. Alcohol very well-concealed in the flavor.
And the texture....just as I had hoped. Soft, supple and very supportive, without having to rely on massive amounts of residual sugars. Not bottle conditioned, but it almost dosent matter, as the carbonation here is still very nicely done, being quite spritzy and helping keep the finish somewhat light and crisp.
In the end, I think the pinot concentrate brought down the experience for me, but Im really impressed by the texture, the restraint on the barrel, the lack of fusels, and the malt balance. Cant wait to try the black and blue!! I think this is going to get even better as the pinot concentrate flavors dissipate and the yeast comes out more and further dries out the beer. Plus, no dark malts to oxidize (do DFH beers even oxidize, lol?). My score is partially factoring in the potential I think this has.

4.1
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
rsauermann (38) - Arlington, Texas, USA - MAY 9, 2007
Wow. This is almost a wine. Had to go to wine section of Central Market just to find it. Pours golden pink. Crisp and clean, with a slight red wine bite. Tasted slight lemmon and pepper.

3
   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
Ernest (7625) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - MAY 8, 2007
Boulder Strong Ale Fest 2007. Body is medium amber. Aroma is lightly malty (toasted grain, cookie), moderately yeasty (cobwebs), with notes of lemon zest, clove, pepper, and alcohol. Flavor is heavily sweet, lightly acidic, lightly bitter. Finish is moderately sweet, lightly acidic, moderately bitter. Medium to full body, watery/syrupy texture, lively carbonation, lightly to moderately alcoholic. Kinda humdrum and one-dimensional...couldnt really get excited about anything going on here.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
graham515 (537) - Houston, Texas, USA - MAY 8, 2007
Pours into the glass a nice ruby color. Has a great aroma with some yeastiness and some great fruit tones i suspect are from the pinot noir extract. The flavor is very rich with some sharp bitterness on the swallow. A very interesting brew from Dogfish Head.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
HumuloneRed (751) - Portland, Oregon, USA - MAY 8, 2007
750 ml. Bottle. Pours a cloudy pink/orange color with a thick slightly pink/white head and thick creamy lacing. Orange, coriander, grape in the nose. There many different flavors in this beer: grape, orange, oak. All with little to no alcohol burn. Nice beer.

3.9
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
beerbill (3616) - Laurel, New York, USA - MAY 7, 2007
750 ml bottle. Pours a cloudy ruby color with a moderate, bright white head that is lightly tinted pink. Nice bright aroma of orange, malt, and red wine grapes. The flavor is malt and orange along with a noticeable amount coriander, some light oak, and red wine grapes. Coats the palate nicely but is not thick or syrupy. The alcohol is very well hidden with virtually no bite. Quite enjoyable.

3.8
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
tomthompson89 (1982) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - MAY 7, 2007
Really nice beer, had at a tasting at Churchkey spring reviaval. Good time by the way. pours slightly pink with an orange, definatly seen is the influence of the pinot noir juice and barrels, has some good spicy flavours the booze is well hidden as well. very nice product!!!

4.7
   AROMA 9/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 19/20
CigarsLoveBeer (153) - Illinois, USA - MAY 6, 2007
Bottle: Ruby body with a very soft looking, rocky, attractive pink head. Aroma is malty, crisp, with heavy grape and citrus notes. Banana and clove like notes present. Just wonderful. In the mouth, this beer starts out very malty for a wit, with clove/banana qualities begging to intrude at midpalate, after which the alcohol starts to show its teeth with apple flavors. The finish shows off a more grape-like quality, present at differing points, but really shows up in the finish. Dry finish still, with some lingering sweet-alcohol bite. Mouthfeel somehow manages to start out crisp, then smooth out towards the end. Very interesting and good.

4.2
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
grandet (501) - Scranton, Pennsylvania, USA - MAY 6, 2007
Bottle: Nice pour with a moderate head. very nice smell with a hints of fruit. Very enjoyable. Def worth a try

3.9
   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
patrick767 (4047) - fort wayne, Indiana, USA - MAY 5, 2007
UPDATED: OCT 16, 2012 sampled at the Hampton tasting - Pours a nice red color with a moderate head. It smells of sweet malts, yeast, and maybe some dark fruit. The flavor includes those components and some moderate hops. Enjoyable, but Id like to try it again when its not at the tail end of a long night of beer tasting. Rerate from tap at Dash In - Orange, hazy pour with a long lasting head. Aroma of berries, malt, and a little alcohol. Sweet, fruity taste with good hops bitterness in the background. Alcohol comes out more as it warms. Hops very apparent in the complex finish. 8/4/9/3/16.


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