2011 Project Bourbonic Plague by Cascade Brewing

1888652_10101647503521700_1062009294_n 1601349_10101647504195350_1981199463_n 999398_10101649156324470_562184422_nRating: 6/5

2011 Project Bourbonic Plague by Cascade Brewing is a 12% ABV North West Style Sour ale aged in oak barrels and spices.

Label:
This NW style sour ale is a blend of spiced Double Porters that were aged in Bourbon and Wine Barrels for 18months before aging on dates and spices for up to an additional 12 months. This hand-packed and bottle conditioned sour ale should be served at 40 degrees Fahrenheit. 
___

Obtained from bringonthebeer.com and a rare specimen at that, this ale is a conundrum and a hybrid all of its own. I have not had a sour aged in wine oak and bourbon and let alone one aged in wine as well. Lots of work and preparation time spent in this little complex gem.

Aromas:
Red Wine, dark chocolate, dark fruits of raisins, cherries, plums, blue berries, currants, dates, caramel, vanilla, oak, bourbon, coconut, funky sour grapes, port wine, cinnamon, fruit cake, flan, almond joy, fudge brownie, brettanomyces, stone fruits like apricot, peaches and lychess, molasses, fancy wine aromas, flowers and other stuff, damn.

Flavors:
Rich flow of crazy complexity! Red wine, sour grape notes, Chocolate covered currants, tart dark Cherries, raisins, plums, prunes, blue berries, black berries, dates, apples, apricots, pears, oak, vanilla, bourbon, coconut, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, fudge brownies, peaches, flan, cinnamon, brown sugar, fruit cake, rye bread, dulce de leche caramel, coffee and mocha notes as it warms up, key lime pie, hints of peppercorn, mild brandy and more sweet stuff.

Aftertaste:
Lingering wine and bourbon, caramel, mild sour notes, raisin bread, tart cherries and sugar. NO alcohol in the taste, surprisingly and also moderate to sipping drinkability. Yes this is pretty smooth surprisingly.

Overall:
The best sour ale I have ever had aside from my favorite sour like Jolly Pumpkin’s Madrugada Obscura. Most sours don’t exceed my expectations but damn, this is just above and beyond! The flavors are really complex where at some point you feel like sour tart cherries, then wine, then sweet chocolate, then bourbon then caramel, then flan, then… damn! This should not even be categorized as a major sour beer as it really is more than that to the point where people that do not love sours will find some kind of crazy appreciation for this poison in a bottle, that’s, this is just the poison you need. At some points I thought this felt like Chocolate Rain if it went sour…lmao!!

Anime Corner:
Midna from Legend of Zelda Twilight Princess and Dead Master from Black Star Rock Shooter were the perfect poisons I mean pairings for this beer. The colors as well as the magic Midna uses like casting a spell is what is used to make this liquid death very tasty. Same for the Dead Master in her dark green castle background. Midna is another favorite character of mine as well so the pairing did the beer justice in show casing several aspects of witchery, the plague and medieval times too. Dead Master represents the aspect of death which the bubonic plague brings.

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