GAManiac (1944) - Atlanta, Georgia, USA - SEP 5, 2012
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
750ml bottle with orange wax.
Pours a deep, clear orange with a small soapy beige head that recedes slowly and leaves some sticky legs and lacing on the sides.
Aroma is boozy as hell with lots of alcohol, vanilla, and oak. Sweetness dominates the nose in the form of heavily caramelized sugar and booze-soaked light fruits, apricots and pears. Hints of citrus as well, oranges especially, though itís definitely hidden behind the alcohol and sugary sweetness.
Whoa, and I thought the aroma was heavy. The taste is oaky tannins, molasses, orange zest and straight up alcohol, which just completely burns the throat after each sip. Apricots and pears are still there but the spiciness and boozy burn are the dominant components.
Mouthfeel is heavy and massively sweet and alcoholic. Decent carbonation keeps it from getting completely out of hand.
This is a serious beer and one to be shared as the booze, in my opinion, is not hidden at all. I would peg it pretty close to 15%. Not my favorite from Surly, but, hey, thatís a high bar.
ineedbeer (2045) - Oakland, California, USA - DEC 1, 2016
2.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 12/20
Poured from a 750 ml bottle.
Aroma is very malt forward with caramel, sugar, toffee and honey. Some light cracker and toasted bread notes. Faint oak notes. Light herbal, grassy notes. Light alcohol spice. Medium light esters with a floral note as well as some stone fruit.
Pours a somewhat hazy, copper-orange with a medium small, somewhat thin, white head that recedes steadily to the edges where small clumps linger. Light lacing and fairly long legs.
Flavor is fairly sweet, but with a dry alcoholic finish. Moderately strong notes of caramel, honey, toasted bread, candi sugar and toffee. Medium bitterness with a grassy, herbal note. Medium light oak notes. Quite a bit of alcohol spice in the finish. Fairly woody especially in the finish; lingering wood and alcohol spice.
Mouthfeel is medium to medium full bodied with medium carbonation. Low astringency and moderate alcohol warmth. Some weird fruity and floral esters.
Overall, I am not a fan. The body is thin for the amount of alcohol. The wood is overpowering. The malt profile is too light.
slowrunner77 (11050) - Reno, Nevada, USA - JUN 30, 2016
3.5 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Aged bottle shared 4 ways. Alcohol a little hot, and flavor a bit muddled, wether with age or always is hard to tell. Lots of oak and malts competing for your attention and a light piney bitterness. Doesnít seem like this needed to be 15%, but it served it well sitting for a few years.
koleminer20 (3073) - Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA - JUN 10, 2016
3.4 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
From notes. Enjoyed this one at the Brew Crew Bash in Ann Arbor on May 21. This one was poured from a 750 mL bottle. This was had side-by-side with Surly Five, and this one paled in comparison. Paled hard. The pour is a hazy brown-ish orange color with a thick cap of ivory colored head that lingers, leaving a decent amount of lace. The aroma is very woody and sweet. There is a decent caramel and toffee to it, with a strong spiciness. I canít place the spices, itís just a blast to the nostrils. The booze is pretty heavy here as well. There is a light bitterness on the finish, but it doesnít help. The flavor is equally as strange. There is the spice right up front, and it slowly moves through a decent booziness and into a soft woodiness and the bitter pine on the finish. Itís like a cross between booze and an overly-hopped American barley wine. The mouth feel is decently thick and viscous with a soft carbonation that lets the bitterness cling to the palate. Itís not the best flavor to hang around, thatís for sure. I got to try it, but damn am I glad it was just a pour.
sunevdj (4030) - Copenhagen OE, DENMARK - APR 22, 2016
3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 12/20
On tap at CBC 2013. Pours a clear orange with a small off-white head. Quite bitter with a moderate sweetness. Hoppy aromas of pine. Lots of alcohol. Medium bodied. Almost no carbonation. Long bitter finish. Too much alcohol.
GTAEgeek (2095) - Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA - FEB 7, 2016
3.1 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 3/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Thanks to my old Secret Santa for this bomber. Hazy, orange color, with a small, bubbly, beige head. Toffee, cereals, orange peel, and caramel. Sweet, with a strange bitterness and off sourness. Very heavy body, sticky, acidic, and syrupy. This is a very strong beer, but it has an off flavor.
BuckeyeBoy (6845) - Boise, Idaho, USA - SEP 16, 2015
3.5 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle pours out a golden topped with a small head. Nose is very fruity mango pineapple pear barrel vanilla and spice. Taste is more of the fruit combo along with a barrel presents vanilla toffee and nice cereal malt.
ljthiessen (1218) - Winnipeg, Manitoba, CANADA - AUG 23, 2015
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle. Cloudy orange-amber pour with a thick off-white head. Caramel, honey, woody notes, an interesting spiciness and funky character - kind of like cedar. A slight boozy hotness, but less than expected at 15%. Pretty nice, but a bit odd.
rouhlas (3153) - GREECE - AUG 13, 2015
3.5 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
From tap. Clear golden orange color with off white head. Malty aroma, caramel, citrusy fruity, alcoholic, perfume notes. Sweet and bitter taste like aroma. Medium oily body with soft carbonation.
RichTheVillan (7347) - Birmingham, West Midlands, ENGLAND - JUN 24, 2015
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 14/20
Bottle at Side Project tasting night; cold deep orange pour with a thin white head, aroma has sweet marmalade, taste is really big booze, tangerine, sweet toffee, some apple, nice.
fiveacestx (954) - Texas, USA - MAY 29, 2015
2.5 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 9/20
Bottle - I needed a high ABV drink after spending 10 minutes trying to get past the f***ing wax on the top of the bottle. Has a dirty orange plum look to it. Dark fruit taste, some spices and alcohol. Probably would have been better a few years ago when I bought it.