Oakes (17664) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - JUL 15, 2017 HonusWagner (2168) - Florida, USA - SEP 23, 2013
4.2 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 9/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
I’ve debated my 1000th rate for a while. Should it be Gratitude, as a symbol of the thanks I’d need to give to the many great beer geeks, here and elsewhere, who have generously shared with me on my journey down the rabbit hole? Should it be La Fin Du Monde, the first microbrew I ever tracked down, only to hate it when I wasn’t aware that it was meant to be poured into a glass? Should it be the rarest walez imaginable, regardless of emotional significance?
I settled on none of these things, because ultimately rating beer is about expanding ones horizons, about loving the art even when it gives you things like Peated Black Hole and any sour beer produced by Dark Horse. This random, potentially delicious, beer in my fridge represents my belief that ratings milestones are just markers on the endlessly rich journey of a beer geek.
Pour is dark brown or black but with the sort of light, bubbly head you expect from a black ale rather than the frothy, creamy head of a stout or porter. Aroma is a fascinating melange of characters, a light hint of soy sauce, a spicy character reminiscent of the DeCiccos/Captain Lawrence chestnut beer, some kind of stone fruit character, maybe plums, a dash of fusels/alcohol in the nose, minor smokiness, earthy, overall a bit like a malbec, very complex and fascinating. Taste is a bit sweet up front, modest carbonation carries the fruit flavor to the forefront with spice notes of black pepper not far behind. Earthy, semisweet, clean on the back end, minimal bitterness. Mild tartness, curious. Highly drinkable. Good stuff.
From here we go sublime.
Medium brown, tart and maybe a fair bit of coffee. With a tartness, it’s not my favourite. stantheman (1050) - British Columbia, CANADA - JUL 12, 2017
On tap takeover at Darby’s Gastown in Vancouver. A dark brown beer with a bit of off-white head and faintly fruity nose. Dried fruit notes up front, trace of roasted malt in the background. A bit sweet with low bitterness. 3.9 Ferris (15267) - Burnaby, British Columbia, CANADA - JUL 8, 2017
Draft - Dark roast and dark cocoa notes. Jet brown with a small beige head. Dark fruit, dark sweet notes and a long nice finish. Holdwine (1228) - Beertimore, Maryland, USA - MAY 25, 2017
Nice, dark, slightly musty, dry pour. 7.4% is a bit high, but still pleasant for a Belgian Ale. JPDIPSO (6223) - Wauwatosa, USA - APR 29, 2017
Dark, slightly woody hops. Somewhat flat in feel. Mild pine. Damn lent starts in 4 minutes… Good by beer. 3/11.
unclemike (3123) - Ft. Riley, Kansas, USA - MAR 30, 2017
Dark brown pour with a thin tan head. Bitter vinous fruit nose (like white grape) along with some roasted malt. Flavor starts with bitter fruit rind, then turns to malty roastiness with some chocolate before a burnt coffee finish. rumore (523) - Rimini, ITALY - DEC 18, 2016
From the bottle. Pours rather dark with average quantity of cappuccino-coloured foam. Aroma is intense of licorice, fruits under spirits. Body is medium-dense. Taste is not too sweet, with some bitterness coming out afterwards. Finish is dry. MarcoDL (4920) - NETHERLANDS - NOV 6, 2016
Draft at beertemple. Aroma of caramelised malt, licorice and yeast. Flavor of yeast, caremelised malt, licorice and soy-ish malt. Too much licorice for me. Maakun (5556) - The Hague, NETHERLANDS - OCT 29, 2016
Tap at Oproer. Deep mahogany with creamy beige head. Looks lovely. Soft raw cocoa, dried fruits, light spices, plums, fresh figs, toffee. Over medium sweet and light bitter. Medium bodied with creamy feel. Very nice. PanMarek (438) - Pennsylvania, USA - OCT 22, 2016
Pours a dark opaque ruby with quick, thin beige foam. Strong toasted malt nose with licorice and brown sugar. Initial dry taste, light body and thin fizz followed by broad roasted malts and a slipper texture. There are some notes of instant coffee and some dried fruit, chestnut and mild spices. It tastes very much like a Belgian ale, which is what Rate Beer calls it. On its website, Stillwater calls it a dark existential farmhouse ale and they have what looks to be a more traditional saison. It’s a strong, dry, roasted malt Belgian more than anything.