ClarkVV (6862) - Boston, Massachusetts, USA - JUL 17, 2003
UPDATED: AUG 2, 2005 2000-2001 bottle. Deep Ruby with some orange and brown tinges. Smells of strong malt and alcohol.
Medium amount of soft off white head that leaves quickly.
Begins sweet with some earthy/root liqueur notes. The body has some sweet malty notes, and tastes like a small pancake breakfast with maple syrup and bacon. Hops definitely come out and there lingers a dry hopped flavor towards the end that is not dominant, but adds some balance. Some grainy notes detectable and alcohol may not need to be this high to achieve the flavor. 2003-2004 bottle. Butterscotch/english toffee aroma, medium strong. Goldings hops, caramel. Pretty nice altogether. Clear, however with a small head, but a nice ruby/mahogany color. Holy crap, it certainly wasnt this hoppy last time. Cascades hops, ultra bitterness on the end. Very dry, only moderate sweetness at the beginning. Moderately acidic hops finish, with some very dry butter-toffee. The 01 was more balanced. 2005 bottle Now a year-round production, and in part, I can’t blame them for wanting to cash in on a good product, but IMO, upping the production on this has hurt the already sagging quality of this once glorious beer. Boring, uneventful maltiness, is sweet, lightly sticky but more filtered. Hops are more straightforward bitter and light pine-like, with a short finish overall, and just something really missing. Though I havent kept my scores from the different vintages, my overall is a mix. motelpogo (8031) - Plzen, CZECH REPUBLIC - JUN 28, 2003
why don't american beers have abv on the bottle? i figured this was stronger. pretty flat, poured red into linc's glass but amber into mine. not too sweet, atually quite dry. found a swig left over in the morning and it tasted of dried dog food duff (5486) - Copenhagen, DENMARK - JUN 27, 2003
Rich barley sweetness at the start, yet quite soft and approachable. Some nice delicate spicyness, with a touch of caramel and toffee, quite a hoppy, bitter-ish finish, quite alright. raindog (560) - Evansville, Indiana, USA - MAY 29, 2003
02'-03'bottle: Light brown. Small but lasting head. Big toasty/grainy,malt aroma with underlying hops(cascades and earthy hops). Creamy,fizzy mouthfeel. Malts dominate the flavor til' the finish which is loaded with hops and toffee.As it warms malts become sticky and linger. Much more than I was expecting,and quite good. jazz88 (2699) - San Francisco, California, USA - MAY 26, 2003
Bottle of the 2002-2003 vintage. Dark amber color with a laced tan head. A strong malt character with a light hop and earthy flavor. A touch of spice to let you know its a "special ale," but rather middle of the road for the style.
Hopistotle420 (1177) - Amherst, Massachusetts, USA - MAY 18, 2003
Deep ruby amber. Creamy, frothy whitish head. Big earthy malt nose. Big malts, very assertive. Very smooth drinking, despite evident alcohol. Nice fruitiness, medium bodied palate, finishes with a lingering, bitter, spicy, pepper, alcoholic finish. Very nicely done. I like this brew. apoptosis (1317) - Denver, Colorado, USA - MAY 17, 2003
Very complex flavor, and hard to put my finger on all that is in this one. Definetly malty, and a handful of spices. Slight alcohol presence, but the beer is not overly sweet or sticky. Amber body and no head really. Pretty good and robust. notalush (5922) - Lakewood, Colorado, USA - MAY 17, 2003
[year unknown] Nice amber color, minimal lacing that disappears quickly - slightly fruity aroma - this is a pretty robust and flavorful ale, lots going on - roasted nuts, fruits, cookie, a bit of chocolate - slight hops and grain in the finish - a very well made english strong ale, esp. from an american brewery. MilkmanDan (1942) - Eagan, Minnesota, USA - MAY 15, 2003
Deep color, sticky off-white head. Aroma is a bit toasty and nutty. Flavor quite malty, some good nuttiness, maybe a bit of caramel. Slight chocolate, a bit of rye. Enough hops to give some kick. Does have a slightly harsh finish that's a bit unpleasant. Decently creamy. guzzler67 (1696) - Hanover, Maryland, USA - APR 4, 2003
02-03 vintage. Not much of a head, but the appearance was beautiful - a nice dark amber. Still waiting for the nose to develope, but did detect the toasted malts. Malts dominated the flavor also, so all you hopheads need to be forewarned. Overall, a very pleasant English-style ale.