2010 Black Xantus ((SPECIAL BIRTHDAY RE-REVIEW)) by Humboldt Brewing, brewed at Firestone Walker, is an 11% ABV Imperial Stout brewed with Mexican Jobella Coffee Beans and aged in Bourbon and Wine barrels. Cellared for 4 years.
Black Xantus is a rare bird and the first new release from Nectar Ales in Years. It is the First ever “big-beer” to be released under the Nectar Ales line. Barrel aged for 6 months in combination of Bourbon, retired Firestone Union and wine barrels and Infused with fair-trade, organic coffee from local roaster Jobella. Rich bourbon and coffee aromas greet the senses. Complex chocolate and tobacco flavors fill the palate. This beer displays a full-bodied mouth-feel and an overall balanced presentation. It would be a perfect pairing to rich chocolate desserts.
Style: Imperial Java Stout IBUs: 50 Color: Black ABV: 11%
Today is my birthday and as a special treat, I wanted to do a re-review the first blog post I did long ago. Black Xantus is one of my favorite beers that got me into trying different craft beers (Aside from Lost Abbey and Arrogant Bastard) and was one which also got me into collecting beer labels. The first time I tried it was Christmas eve in 2010 after I had saved the this beer for about 1 year and was one that was told to be paired with chocolate dessert. I had saved it in remembrance of my departed mother. Back then when I tried it, it was so damn rich and paired so well with chocolate cheesecake that I knocked out for a bit. Even before the days of Black Tuesdays, Grey Mondays, super barrel aged chocolate beers, this one was one of my special ones. Hence the reason it sits to this day in the center of my beer bottle collection in the wall. I did not know much about barrel aged beers back then but after trying so many different beers but this was still my most favorite. So today, I bring here a bottle, aged for 4 years, to remember my mom and the day she gave birth to me. Today I am 31 years old, the age at which my mom had me. So bringing this beer out makes this even more the special occasion.
Rich coffee mocha, dulce de leche caramel, coconut, dark cherries, dark raisins, plums, blackberries, vanilla, oak bourbon, flan, choco flan, dark chocolate, milkshake, port wine notes, hazelnut, marshmallow smores, fudge cake, rocky road ice cream, sweetened condensed milk on bananas, pecan pie, brown sugars, chocolate chip cookies, Kahlua, roasty notes and almond joy.
Cherries, Dark chocolate, milk chocolate, chocolate milk shake, roasted coffee grains, mocha, espresso, chocolate abuelita hints, vanilla, oak, bourbon, dulce de leche caramel, port wine, coconut, marshmallows, graham crackers, dark fruits like dark cherries, raisins, plums, choco flan, crème brulee, hazelnut nectar, pecan pie, rocky road ice cream, sweetened condensed milk, almond joy, banana notes, reminiscent of chocolate cheesecake, fudge cake, Kahlua, brown sugar and mild anise.
Roasty coffee lingers along with the sweet vanilla and caramel bourbon with the cherry and chocolate and finishing earthiness. No alcohol in the despite this thing is probably at 15% ABV after 4 years. A sense of smoothness with a sipping quality a thick almost syrupy mouth feel. Excellent!
Right next to Mocha Wednesday is what this is, one of the best mocha chocolate coffee beers out there. After 4 years, it still grew into some great complex stuff. There was no doubt in my mind why this was my favorite in 2010 and the other years I tried it and certainly no doubt why even today, it doesn’t fail to amaze me. Sometimes, when it comes to beers, it is always best to remember where you started. I started trying different beers back then and if it wasn’t for this and beers like Trois Pistoles and St. Bernardus 12abt, I might as well have missed out on Beer, the lost treasure of taste and art!!
Asmodeus from Shinrabansho is the daughter of Asutarotto from that same card series. Though she may be a demon, she is of pure heart, but though evil women be, this can be said for even the utmost good. She was used in the first pairing of art work that made me try out different beers. Her main relation to Black Xantus has to do with her colors which pair with the Black Xantus background of the Blue Moon and the blue night sky. Xantus, being the humming bird, she rises to impart the great flavors of complex dark fruits, cherries, coffee, chocolate, bourbon and more into the beer. In this pairing she is kicking back and relaxing. That is pretty much what happens after 4 years of just laying down. She gazes into the soul of those who court her and while she may seem seductive and sweet in nature (Like a Rose which the Xantus drinks) she will bring forth a dangerous smite! But… only because she loves you… So basically, be careful with Asmodeus, take her in a sip at a time and don’t take her head on, cuz after 4 years she may come back with vengeance. Cheers!