beachbum25 (1092) - Powellville, Maryland, USA - JAN 19, 2013
On tap @ Specific Gravity, Salisbury Md-Dark blackish pour w/a moderate tan head. Spiced/pine aroma. Dark belgian flavor w/a lot of spice, Ginger, allspice, some pine tar/pitch, & cloves. Smooth & easy to drink, alcohol was well hidden. Long spicy finish, a good ending for this series! mnmike (1086) - Minnesota, USA - MAR 21, 2013
On tap - this is the first I’ve had of the Vertical Epic series, not too bad, but not enough to make me wish I’d been in on this series from the start. BillWyce (1086) - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA - MAR 30, 2013
From notes: Poured opaque black with a 1-finger tan head. Aroma of cola or caramel, with notes of cinnamon and nutmeg. Some mild clove beneath. Full body, somewhat oily with a dry finish. Flavor of roasted malt and some earthy yeast. The spices lie beneath with a slight burnt note that lightens as it warms. AskForJenny (1086) - Ontario, New York, USA - APR 2, 2015
22 oz cellared - Nice and big and chewy. Layered wonderfulness of hop, malt, and spice. AndyReynolds (1085) - Cincinnati, Ohio, USA - DEC 19, 2012
Draft at Dutch’s. Notes of candied brown sugar, dark fruit, molasses, maple syrup (?), and a ton of other spices. Just a lot going on in this beer. More than I expected, fo sho. I am really impressed.
kambei70 (1075) - - MAR 16, 2014
2012 bottle to a tulip glass. Pours a dark mahogany brown with a thick cinnamon tan head. Smell is allspice, cinnamon and slightly herbaceous. Taste is allspice, cinnamon, chocolate, some dark fruits and herbal bitterness at the end. Spices take the main stage. Full mouthful with a dry, tannic feeling at the end. Very stout-like.
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone NeoHippie2 (1074) - Louisville, Kentucky, USA - JAN 28, 2014
Dark brown/black pour with a small beige head. This is a spice bomb, tons of clove, anise, and cinnamon on the nose. Flavor is similar but drier than you might expect. This was my least favorite in the series, just spice overload. The roasted malts come out in the finish which is a little bitter. This one needs a few more years in the cellar. daleharshman (1065) - Escondido, California, USA - DEC 22, 2013
Bomber purchased at the brewery in Escondido a year ago ($6.99). Had a number of times on draft and from bottle around this time last year, but saved this bottle to cellar for the rating. Pours basically pitch black with a finger and a half of brown-ish head. AROMA full of spice (ginger and allspice stand out) along with notes of gingerbread cookies, medicinal herbs, and some dark semi-candied fruit. FLAVOR of mild dark roasted malts, lots of spice (clove / cinnamon / ginger all quite noticeable), dark rye bread, medicinal herbs, and a bit of brown sugar. Roasty and spicy but not really sweet. Dry finish indeed. Very well-concealed 9%. The heavy spice in this beer really stands out more than anything else. I had enjoyed the Vertical Epic series, particularly Stone’s different takes on Belgian-inspired beers. A little surprised that Stone took a more straight-forward approach here and brewed a somewhat typical dark Christmas ale. Still, it ends up being a fun seasonal beer (though I was hoping the spicing would mellow out a bit with the year of aging). (537, 833) MmmcKay (1052) - Brentwood, Tennessee, USA - DEC 20, 2012
Pour is dark. Basically black. Decent head that is tan with some hints of red. Nose is very spicy. Smells like the holidays. Everything they put in the brew sticks out, especially the cinnamon, clove, and orange peel. Pine cone. Nose is very pleasant and complex. Scares me a bit though. Smells like it will be over spiced. Luckily upon tasting the beer, the roasty malts blend flawlessly with the spices. It is bone dry. Not sweet at all. Very well done for a holiday beer. Great way to end the vertical epic series. Sregnar35 (1030) - Rotterdam, New York, USA - JAN 8, 2013
On tap at the abbey. Pours very dark brown with a small white head. Aroma is spicy and sweet. Flavor is very spicy, like cinnamon and ginger snap cookies, warm and nice.
---Rated via Beer Buddy for iPhone