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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Bavik Petrus Aged Belgian Pale Sour Ale

Bavik Petrus Aged Belgian Pale Ale, a light sour offering from Bavik aged 20 months in oak, poured a dazzling champagne color into the glass, with the attendant heavy carbonation and fizzy, short-lived white head to match.  The nose immediately gave away the sour bugs that have developed through the fermentation process- sour rhubarb, sweet strawberries, pie cherries, green apple tartness, and the slightest hints of vinegar.

Petrus Aged Pale Ale opened tart and dry, with green apple sourness shooting to the back of the mouth and the sweeter fruits detected in the nose stayed in the background.  The ale seemed a little soft and a tad watery compared to most sour ales I have tried, but that was likely due to the extended oak aging and how bone dry the ale was.

Petrus Aged Pale Ale is a fantastic sour that walks the line between a Berliner Weisse and a Flanders Brown when it comes to flavor.  Less wild flavors than comparable Belgian sours I have tried, but a cutting dryness that will give most Bruts a run for their money.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Dogfish Head Palo Santo Marron Mahogany Ale

Dogfish Head Palo Santo Marron, a mahogany ale aged in Palo Santo crates by Dogfish Head, poured a short lived, orange-brown head over a black body with dark brown and red highlights.  The nose immediately gave away malty caramel, brown sugar, and a hint of vanilla over a hard to identify background of stewed dates.

Dogfish Head Palo Santo Marron opened thick and sticky, with tons of caramel and maple sugar leading the charge.  Sweetness and heat defined the middle of the drinking experience, with an almost maple fudge candy taste.  Although the dark sweetness and heat never subsided, the aging bPublish Postrought forth some vanilla at the end that rounded out the sweet heat and gave it a more refined brandy quality.

Dogfish Head Palo Santo Marron is a huge, huge ale, and is best enjoyed when sipped like a fine port.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Magic Hat Howl Black As Night Winter Lager

Magic Hat Howl Black As Night Winter Lager, a winter seasonal offering from Magic Hat, poured an almost coffee-like color into the glass, capped with a short lived but frothy cream-hued head.  The nose carried forward dry, roasted grains and no hop or yeast aromas to speak of.  

Magic Hat Howl Black Lager opened with the typical dark lager flavors- watered down coffee and a barely detectable tartness in the front.  Surprisingly, the lager thickened up in the middle and even gained a slightly creamy mouth-feel.  The lager faded to a thin, roasted and barely bitter end.

Magic Hat Howl Black Lager stands out pretty strange as an American dark lager... to thick and rich to be compared to most lagers but lacking the body and sweetness of an ale.  Worth checking out for sure, but start with a loosey.