holdenn (2116) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - MAY 3, 2009
Thanks to BBB63 for this sample. Pours a hazed orange yellow with a white fluffy head. Fresh citrus hops and caramel malts with yeast notes in the aroma. Citrus and fruity malt flavors with an earthy and oaky complexity that makes it really enjoyable. Balanced and tasty. Thanks! puzzl (3260) - New York, New York, USA - APR 27, 2009
Bottle shared by BBB63. Incredibly prefumey aroma, cologne, almost dominated with them. A touch of hops kicks in there late. The flavor has hoppy toast, cookie, with a strong boozy element and a slightly wheaty and yeasty finish. I don’t see any wild yeast here at all. dalekliz (924) - New Jersey, USA - APR 11, 2009
Growler, thanks to WeeHeavySD for sharing! Pours a murky amber-brown with a white ring. Tart aroma, of fruit, citrus hops, wine, caramel, and yeast. Taste is a little lighter and crisp, of citrus, wine, and wood. Lingering crispness that’s a bit watery. Strange but very nice. BBB63 (6557) - La Porte, Indiana, USA - MAR 20, 2009
At brewery: Slightly hazed deep golden hue with a small but lasting head and spotty lace. The nose is grapey, woody and acidic with a hint of Belgian yeast esters and wild yeast lacto funk. Some mineral, biscuit, and herbal notes as well. WOW, great twangy forefront of acidity and oak from the Merlot barrel combining with hops driven bittersweet over a layer of dry biscuity malt. Hint of honey and caramel comes in and out. Clean tannic finish makes this brew dangerously refreshing. There is no hint of alcohol found on the palate. Among the finest beers Steve has done. Think BA Maillot Jaune but much bigger and wild. Sadly all gone for now... sniff WeeHeavySD (3387) - Portland, Oregon, USA - MAR 5, 2009
Growler from Mike, BBB63, shared with my girlfriend and dalekliz. Pours orange with a tan head. Nose is vinious malty yeasty and strange. Taste is slightly vinous slightly sour and super funky. This beer is unique and tasty and strange I like all those things.
Tmoney99 (14866) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - MAR 4, 2009
Draft sample at the MBG Winterfest 2009.
Poured a hazy orange color with an average frothy white head that mostly lasted with good lacing. Moderate to heavy citrus, wood and yeast aroma. Medium body with a smooth texture and soft carbonation. Medium to heavy bittersweet flavor with a medium bittersweet finish of moderate duration.
This is a very drinkable complex beer and my expectations where exceeded. tjthresh (1875) - Greenfield, Indiana, USA - MAR 2, 2009
Pours murky yellow orange. Kind of orangey nose. Lots of citrus and oak tannin. Light and easily drinkable. RAYBOY01 (2010) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - FEB 14, 2009
The base of this beer is a Belgian IPA at around 9%ABV. (I presume it is the Anniversary Ale) It was initially hopped with Centennial and Challenger, and then dry-hopped in the secondary with Fuggles, Centennial, and Challenger. It was then introduced into 3 different casks, all Merlot, where it spent the next three months. The three different Merlot casks were then blended and used to refill one of the original Merlot casks, and dry-hopped AGAIN with Centennial and Sazz. The reblended beer then spent the next 6 months in that cask. Just before kegging it was AGAIN dry-hopped with East Kent Golding, Centennial, and Sazz. In the natural course of all of this casking, recasking, and re-recasking into and out of non-inocculated barrels, the beer came into contact with multiple strains of micro-organisms, wild yeasts, and various other bugs. This resulted in a very robust and intense funkification of the beer along the way. This beer retains only long-distant memories of it’s earlier IPA incarnation...the hops are there, but mellowed into submission. The lightly roasted caramel backbone is there, but burnished into a deep golden sweetness underneath everything else. The real players here are the mysterious funkmeisters that came along for the ride...intensely tart wild yeast strains, overtly sour vinous merlot bugs, and various unknown micro-organisms that turned this Belgian IPA into a wickedly complex and challenging sweet/bitter/tart/sour ale not likely to ever by recreated again. Wild brew!