2017 Oak-Aged Vanilla World Wide Stout by Dogfish Head

 

 

Rating: 6/6

2017 Oak-Aged Vanilla World Wide Stout by Dogfish Head is a 16% ABV Imperial Stout brewed with Vanilla beans and aged in oak.

Label:

Stout aged in oak on vanilla beans

Commercial Description:

Brewed with a ridiculous amount of barley, we’ve now taken this Dogfish Head classic and aged it on oak with real vanilla beans! With a little tender love and care we foster this beer from smooth, sweet wort into the big, bad blackend stout it always longed to be. Its bold, port-like complexity goes great with (or as) dessert.

==Introduction==
Back in 2012, along with 120 minute IPA and Fort were some of the most strongest beers I have ever had. At the time, super strong beers were hard to come by and these 3 beers were insane to find. So much so, that I had not brought them back for a review until this year. The original World Wide Stout is still a miss for me and I have not found it again in bottle form. So when I saw the made a vanilla oak aged one, I definitely had to bring it to the site. While I have enjoyed many vanilla stouts and even spirit aged vanilla beers, I have not had a chance to try an original like this that was aged on vanilla and oak. Especially for that 16% ABV which at the time, the original, was 18%!Let’s have a go at this monster and see if you should seed out this special treasure, cheers!

Aromas:

Rich marshmallow, chocolate smores, fruit cake, oak, roasted coffee, dark chocolate, dark fruits, rum hints, toasted coconut, pecan pie, molasses, mint, Irish cream, Danish cream, flan, bananas foster, hazelnut nectar, and banana sundae.

Flavors:

Super rich vanilla, oak, smokey hints, roasted barley, dulce de leche caramel, flan, sweetened condensed milk, pecan ice cream, tiramasu, mocha, specialy coffee, hazelnut nectar, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, dark chocolate, Belgian chocolate, German chocolate, Bakers chocolate, banana sundae, cookie dough ice cream, Irish cream, Danish cream, chocolate mousee, pecan pie, dark frui raisins, figs, plums, dark cherries, raspberry Chambord, blueberry notes, marshmallow smores, rocky road ice cream, bourbon hints, rum notes, toasted coconut, molasses, cinnamon, burnt sugar, Jericalla Jaliscan custard, Bananas foster, grilled plantains in powdered sugar over with raspberry syrup and crème brulee.
Aftertaste:

Finishing up with complex chocolate, banana sundae, vanilla, fruit cake, custards, mocha, dark fruit, caramels, crème brulee, flan, marshmallow, coconut, oak, burnt sugar and rum notes. Despite the 16% ABV, it is hard to find the alcohol. I am not even sure why, I should sense some type of slight booziness but all I taste is complex flavors. Pitch dark black full body, creamy, velvety, smooth and rich chewy mouthfeel along with a sipping drinkability.

Overall:

Fucking exceptional! It was only in March 2017 that I had tried the original on tap by a lucky find and now this?!?! Well this blows everything into high gear! Lots of rich oak, vanilla and so much complexity that even at the high level of ABV content, it sure is damn hard to see where the alcohol went to. Anyways, if you love specialty stouts, I highly recommend this one, if you can find it!

Anime Corner:

Cryska Bachernowa from the Muv-Luv Alternative Total Eclipse series was used in the original World Wide Stout when I first tried it years ago. So since I could not find another WWS to bring to the site, I settled with bringing her again to this beer and showcasing some colors what would fit with the original (and apparently, the new label as well) with the yellow. This is not a Russian stout but the extra roastiness and body of the beer makes it so and so aside from the colors, she is also Russian to boot! So there is much to complement with this type of pairing for sure!

 

 

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2017 Edition 120 Minute IPA by Dogfish Head

Rating: 6/6

2017 Edition 120 Minute IPA by Dogfish Head is a 16.5% Triple India Pale Ale

Label:
AGES WELL

What you have here is the holy grail for hopheads. This beer is continually hopped for over a 120 minute boil and then dry-hopped every day for a month. Enjoy now or age for a decade or so.

==Introduction==

It’s been literally years since I last tried this. In a time when I had the chance to try Dogfish Head Fort, and World Wide Stout, this one was there. All of the beers were up in the 18% ABV range which was ridiculous at the time. And were actually some of the strongest beers in the world. This one being the strongest IPA before Sink the Bismark came along. Although Sink The Bismark at 41%ABV (YES, 41%ABV) was highly rare and really unavailable. Today, it has yet to see a comeback. Nevertheless, DFH 120 still is one of the strongest IPAs in the world period. Let’s have a look at how this new release does. While I cannot compare to the original, I hope it keeps up to what my expectations were back then, cheers!

Aromas:
dark fruit cherries, dragon fruit, passion fruit, tropical fruit mango, kiwi, honey dew melon, stone fruit apricots, peaches, peach cobbler, peach preserves, orange preserves, orange peel, grapefruit, floral, piney, herbal, garlicky, and grassy dank hops, bourbon notes, raspberries, wild flower honey, rye bread, toffee, vanilla and caramel.

Flavors:
Oranges, Grapefruit, piney, floral, herbal, garlicky, and grassy dank hops, toffee, vanilla, biscuit bread, tangerines, caramel, maple hints, dark fruit cherries, dragon fruit, passion fruit, tropical fruit mango, kiwi, honey dew melon, stone fruit apricots, peaches, peach cobbler, peach preserves, orange preserves, grapefruit preserves, rye bread, sun dried apples, cane sugar, wild flower honey, sweetened condensed milk, three milk/ tres leches cake, pecan pie, caramel covered oranges, lemon candy, lime peel, candied grapefruit, butter scotch, leathery hints, mild bourbon notes, sherry wine, chardonnay, rasberry or some kind of special berries all through out.

Aftertaste:
Finishes very hop forward despite the ABV, Candied Oranges, Grapefruits, Lemon candy, grassy and garlicky dank hops, dark fruits, tropical fruits, stone fruits, caramel, butterscotch and pecan pie. Boozy aftertaste but not detracting from the flavors, amber honey light to medium body, crisp, refreshing, smooth, syrupy and chewy mouthfeel along with a sipping drinkability.

Overall:
A supremely exceptional beer! IT is definitely the epitome of IPAs While I would think this is more of a barley wine, the richer hop aspect is what keeps it in the IPA range. While this is an IPA that can age, it will most likely be more of an American barley wine later on. The complexity of this beer is ridiculous and it is definitely much in the range of what I typically love from special strong beers like this, Yet, the hop strength is super out there. There is a reason why hop heads adore this specialty brew even to this day. Do yourself a favor and get a bottle!

Anime Corner:
Yui Takamura from Muv-Luv Alternative Total Eclipse was used in this pairing as I used her to pair with the original in the original pairing of DFH 120. What I was going for back then was a bad ass looking character that pairs with the colors of the flavors and possibly the golden colors of the beer and the label. So bringing her back and expanding with more art was something I felt worked.

Sources:
https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-tMLuTsu766Q/Vfg5aSBtv7I/AAAAAAAABKU/7SLIQXbygXA_sv8s22oPAWil3yJqcfM5ACE0/s1024/0148ce4827014b29a6227d17bc70a2907dcd8280fd.jpg
http://blog-imgs-85.fc2.com/s/e/i/seiroganmania/psuits1_15.jpg
http://blog-imgs-85.fc2.com/m/o/g/mogiero/71118040711201546.jpg
http://pre10.deviantart.net/984e/th/pre/i/2015/254/2/9/yui_takamura_by_comichan-d995sx5.png
http://i6.photobucket.com/albums/y240/xacur/Go_to_the_Top_Total_Eclipse-2.jpg~original

2016 Private Stock Ale (2005 Olde Ale) by Alesmith

14068422_10103494899824700_6945016554142697332_o 14066228_10103494900907530_825857851174347857_oRating: 6/6

2016 Private Stock Ale (2005 Olde Ale) by Alesmith is an 11% ABV English Strong Ale

Label:
Originally brewed in 2005 as AleSmith Olde Ale, the inaugural beer in our annual Decadence Anniversary Ale series, this imperial English-style ale succinctly follows the brewing traditions of Old World England. Rich and malt-forward, this forceful yet elegant beer showcases soft notes of currants and dried fruit along with complex dark sugars, all of which are balanced by a subtle bitterness derived from the addition of English hops. Savor it now or age (for 20 years or more) and enjoy later, on its own or as part of a multi-vintage vertical tasting.

==Introduction==

When I first obtained this beer, I thought this would be something I have not had in the past. After doing some research it turns out that this is actually the same as the Olde Ale I had a couple years back. At the same time, I remembered how awesome that brew was. So I said, screw it, let’s give it another go to the site. Alesmith has always had very delicious beer. Even for the price they sell them for, you always get a lot of beer and the majority are phenomenal. So I am always excited to bring them to the site, even if a repeat.

Aromas:
Dark Candy sugars, rich Dark fruit cherries, currants, raisins, prunes, dates, figs, blackberries, Dulce de leche caramel, vanilla, toffee, stone fruit peaches, Cadbury chocolate cream eggs, flan, sweetened condensed milk, pecan pie, raspberry preserves on rye bread, molasses, biscuit, nutmeg, fruit cake, brown sugar, cinnamon, apple pie, pecan pie and hazelnut nectar.

Flavors:
Dulce de leche caramel, vanilla, toffee, pecan pie, hazelnut nectar, apples, rich Dark fruit cherries, currants, raisins, prunes, dates, figs, blackberries, walnut bread pudding, figgy pudding, raspberry preserves on rye bread, molasses, biscuit, nutmeg, fruit cake, brown sugar, port wine, butterscotch, earthy hop notes, rock candy, Dark Candy sugars, raspberry chambord, anise hints, milk chocolate, cinnamon, apple pie, stone fruit peaches, Cadbury chocolate cream eggs, flan, sweetened condensed milk, Mexican Cajeta on oak container, red velvet cake, pears and ginger bread.

Aftertaste:
Finishing with rich dark fruits, caramel, butterscotch, anise hints, chocolate, stone fruit notes, port wine and earthy hops. No alcohol in the taste, Crimson clear body, creamy, velvety smooth and syrupy mouth feel and sipping drinkability.

Overall:
Very exceptional brew showcasing many of what makes the English styles of beer noteworthy of world class. Especially the rich complex malt use that unleashes a labyrinth of flavors that can definitely pair with some of the medieval references of time. This one is definitely worth a pick up if you love strong and super complex brews. Hugely recommended!

Anime Corner:
Yui Takamura from Muv Luv Total Eclipse was used in this pairing to go with the colors of the label and the way the flavors are represented by her colors. Typically, label artwork is sometimes what I look for but when the flavors or ingredients used in the beer come into play, it actually adds that much more to a pairing. So you can also state the fact that the way this beer is mature in age, so too is Yui in terms of the development of her physique.

Sources:
https://anime-pictures.net/pictures/get_image/38718-1280×1024-muvluv+total+eclipse-muv-luv-takamura+yui-iizuki+tasuku-miyata+ao-light+erotic.jpg
http://static.zerochan.net/Takamura.Yui.full.866571.jpg

Bananas Foster by Buffalo Bayou

12628632_10103028517793030_3789105173204513726_oRating: 6/6

Bananas Foster by Buffalo Bayou is an 8.6% ABV Weizenbock.

Label:
In a food coma induced by crawfish or steak, few things in life are as delicious and decadent as Bananas Foster slathered over a scoop of vanilla. You know that feeling when you’re so stupid full you laugh when dessert comes then stuff your face anyway? Invented in N’awlins, perfected in Houston. They put it on a plate, we put it in your glass. Drink up monkey, it’s time to go bananas.

==Introduction==

Now this, seems like a delicious Magic Potion! I received this from my friend and fellow beer reviewer, Aaron Mendiola of www.beermetaldude.com. This was intriguing especially since the last beer I tried from Buffalo Bayou, the Red Velvet, really did taste like Red Velvet. It was a supremely delicious beer and now with this one that is being presented to the site, I hope it turns out to be just as awesome as that one. So without further ado, let’s take a look. Cheers!

Aromas:
Rich Bananas, clove spice, vanilla, hazelnut, dark fruit raisins, cherries, capirotada raisin bread pudding, plums, piloncillo sugar cone, grilled banana notes, plantains, bubble gum, walnuts, Chunky Munkey ice cream, citrus, butterscotch, rum notes, milk and dark chocolate, flan, tres leches cake, banana nut bread, stone fruit peach notes and pecan pie.

Flavors:
Ridiculously rich Bananas, matured bananas, clove spice, grilled bananas, plantains, banana cream pie, dark fruit raisins, cherries, capirotada raisin bread pudding, plums, piloncillo sugar cone, cinnamon, banana liqueur, bubble gum, rye bread, banana nut bread, Nutella, dulce de leche caramel, rocky road ice cream, walnuts, pecan pie, Chunky Munkey ice cream, Stone fruit peaches, apricots, rye bread, leather, coriander, citrus, butterscotch, vanilla, brown sugar, rum hints, milk chocolate, dark chocolate, bananas in chocolate, toffee, tres leches and Goat Milk caramel aged in wine.

Aftertaste:
Finishing with an earthy bananas, caramel, dark fruit, stone fruit, vanilla, rum hints, butterscotch, ice cream, clove spice and bubblegum. No alcohol in the taste, brown murky full body, smooth, creamy and chewy mouthfeel along with a sipping drinkability.

Overall:
Talk about the ultimate banana beer experience. Holy shit, I am surprised I didn’t pass out after the first sip. This beer is the real deal!! Lots of rich banana caramel goodness with no end to the deliciousness. This beer actually inspired me to create a beer recipe of my own. It was that damn delicious and really if you love sweet malty beers, this would be super awesome. I wish we could see the beer around California but it truly is unique how certain beers will come out from different unique places of the world.

Anime Corner:
Yui Takamura from Muv Luv Total Eclipse was paired with this beer for the colors of banana, caramel and dark fruits that this beer composes of. Her sexy appeal is just as complimentary as the flavors of this beer. A true dessert of a beer with a truly eye candy and beauty of this artwork.

Sources:
http://i3.egv.cc/img/i.egv.cc/i/feti/pittiri/pittiri_suits_073.jpg

Marshmallow Milk Stout by Garage Brewing Company

11873540_10102772112466360_2992548002009717561_nRating: 5.5/6

Marshmallow Milk Stout by Garage Brewing Company is a 7.1% ABV Sweet/Milk Stout brewed with Marshmallows.

Label:
We believe in making out fresh craft beer from only the finest ingredients. And gues what? It’s really good. Pure decadence with none of the gooey mess… and if you close your eyes, you’ll picture yourself nestled around a campfire.

==Introduction==

Obtained online at craftshack.com along with some other fine beers. This is the second time I try a Garage brewing beer. While I really wish the mango heffeweizen was really good but for some reason, I guess mango and heffs just don’t mix. I will give it the benefit of a doubt because it could have been a bad bottle but also, there hasn’t been another mango heffeweizen I have tasted before so I am sure I will have to try it again. As far as this one goes, I definitely wanted to try it especially since I never tried a marshmallow stout before. Garage brewing definitely has the heart to experiment on some good brews and I really love their ideas which is the reason I got this Marshmallow Stout. Let’s take a look and see what it has to offer.

Aromas:
Milk chocolate, bakers chocolate, chocolate milk shake, Yoohoo chocolate, mocha chocolate, Cocoa Puffs Cereal, Count Chocula Cereal, vanilla, marshmallow cream, crème brulee, Rich Chocolate Marshmallow Smores, graham crackers, waffle cone, milk sugar, dark fruit cherries, currants anise, pecan pie, hazelnut nectar, almond joy chocolate, almond joy chocolate, rocky road ice cream and cookie dough.

Flavors:
Cocoa Puffs Cereal, Count Chocula Cereal, vanilla, marshmallow cream, milk chocolate, bakers chocolate, chocolate milk shake, Yoohoo chocolate, mocha chocolate, dulce de leche caramel, brown sugar, crème brulee, Rich Chocolate Marshmallow Smores, graham crackers, waffle cone, milk sugar, dark fruit cherries, currants anise, pecan pie, hazelnut nectar, almond joy chocolate, rocky road ice cream, cookie dough, Irish cream hints, peanut butter hints, maple syrup, flan, sweetened condensed milk and tres leches cake.

Aftertaste:
Great amount of chocolate, crème brulee, marshmallow, vanilla and caramel sweetness lingers. No alcohol in the taste, deep dark full body, smooth, creamy, syrupy and silky mouthfeel with a moderate drinkability.

Overall:
Holy shit! Major awesomeness with this one. Like it literally is very direct with the marshmallow flavors which is what carries the beer. A real smores chocolate marshmallow and coffee mocha beer. This beer is pretty damn insane and surely surpasses the mango beer I tried a while back. A true and awesome sweet milk stout that is highly recommended. Now I just have to find another one.

Anime Corner:
Mitsurugi Meiya from Muv-Luv Alternative was used in this pairing as I wanted to pair the colors of marshmallow and chocolate as they are over a fire like chocolate smores. The fiery background represents that. Meiya’s hair also represents the the other flavors of the dark fruits, cherries and other sweet complexities. Sexy and sweet just like the rich dessert that flows easy as this beer does. Of course, for such a beer, looking bad ass is definitely a plus and just adds that much more to it.

Sources:
https://brewerianimelogs.files.wordpress.com/2015/08/b093d-muvluvanimewallpaper5starsphistarsworthywallpaper.jpg

Cuivre (7th Anniversary Ale) by The Bruery

10818385_10102531405210630_1687024069030452626_o 11032598_10102531405884280_2367374060231472970_oRating: 6/5

Cuivre (7th Anniversary Ale) by The Bruery is a 16.2% ABV Old Ale aged in Bourbon Barrels

Label:
This sturdy beer marks our seventhth year, and we are grateful for the outpouring of community. Together may our supporters, our brewery and this beer grow in complexity and refinement over the years.

Cuivre (Copper) will age gracefully for decades when cellared properly.

COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION (ratebeer.com)
Cuivre is our seventh anniversary ale, loosely brewed in the English-style Old Ale tradition using our house Belgian yeast strain and then blended using the solera method.

A portion of each of our anniversary ales is saved in our barrels and blended in with the next year’s production, providing more complexity and depth of character that comes with age. Layered with complex flavors of dark fruit,vanilla, oak, and burnt sugar, Cuivre is a robust ale, surely the perfect beer to mark this major milestone.”

==Introduction==

Cuivre or “Copper” in French, in the traditional sense of the wedding anniversary gifts, refers to the 7th year in which Wool or Copper are given. The beer will be released in May and will be available to the public and many places where the Bruery beers are sold. Every year’s addition of the first ale to the new batch gives it another great layer of complexity as the original ale that is now 7 years old and the new young batch all together using the Solera method, as explained in the description, is that much more extraordinary. Every year since Fruet, their 4rd Anniversary when I first tried their beers, I have anticipated each release anxiously. It is with great pleasure that I show you, the newest batch and the newest review of the Bruery’s Anniversary beer. Cheers!!

Aromas:
Rich caramel dulce de leche, vanilla, oak, bourbon, burnt sugar, Dark Belgian candi sugars, burnt cane sugar, butterscotch, waffle cone, raspberry chambord, toffee, maple syrup, graham crackers and rum notes, Cadbury Cream Eggs, Creme brulee, dark fruit raisins, plums, cherries, plum notes, marshmallows, toasted coconut, milk chocolate, dark chocolate, oak, anise, bananas and chocolate truffles.

Flavors:
Cadbury Cream Eggs, Creme brulee, Dulce de leche caramel richness, flan, burnt cane sugar, toasted bananas, plantains, brown sugars, pilloncillo sugar cone, dark fruit raisins, plums, cherries, plum notes, marshmallows, toasted coconut, milk chocolate, dark chocolate, oak, bourbon, vanilla, apples, peaches, chocolate truffle ice cream, scotch whiskey, molasses, chocolate mousee, raisin bread pudding, rye bread. Belgian candi sugars, burnt sugar, rich butterscotch, waffle cone, raspberry chambord, toffee, maple syrup, graham crackers and rum notes.

Aftertaste:
Super rich dulce de leche caramel, raspberries, dark cherries, lingering scotch bourbon, vanilla, marshmallow, milk chocolate and raisin bread pudding. Some alcohol in the aftertaste but not detracting from the rich flavors, silky and creamy mouthfeel, sipping drinkability and dark brown body.

Overall:
Complexity runs super deep…and as with each and every new release, just as exceptional! This year’s version has more caramel and Cadbury chocolate flavors. Some of the dark fruits are pronounced in the flavors like the dark cherry but definitely more caramel this year. For being an ‘Old Ale’ on solera, this beer is surprising every year and with each yearly release, I would definitely say to go out there and get this one. It is one of the best Old Ales ever!

Anime Corner:
Yui Takamura from Muv-Luv Alternative Total Eclipse was used in this pairing since I wanted to go with the theme I had been going with for each of these Bruery anniversary beers. Essentially, the plug suits. Since I already did some with the girls with Evangelion, Muv-Luv was the next bet and who better for a “copper” based beer than Yui and her copper and gold colored suit. Her purple aspects represent the dark fruit complexity that gets better and better every year for the Bruery.

Sources:
https://brewerianimelogs.files.wordpress.com/2015/04/26d5b-muvluvalternative32.jpg
http://images2.alphacoders.com/270/270982.jpg

Peanut Butter Cup Porter by Karl Strauss brewing

10006433_10102104096226260_7623200834244381683_nRating: 5.25/5

Peanut Butter Cup Porter by Karl Strauss brewing is a 5.6% ABV English Porter brewed with Peanut butter, cocoa nibs and vanilla beans.

COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Brewed for San Diego Beer Week 2012 An English-style Brown Porter brewed with organic peanut powder, cocoa nibs, and vanilla beans. The resulting brew is a beer’s answer to the peanut butter cup – a medium-bodied porter with smooth layers of peanut butter and milk chocolate. Stats: 5.6% ABV – 56 SRM – 30 IBU
___

On my trip to San Diego last weekend, my friends and I also stopped by Karl Strauss and tried several of their beers. While I liked a good majority of them and have tried many before, including this one, I was greatly pleased that they allowed this one to be growler filled. Since the first time I tried it long ago, I never really got a chance to do a review and at the time I did not think of doing reviews on the go like I am doing now. So with the opportunity to bring this one home and take my time to review it, here it is! Now, I had a couple of peanut butter cup beers before like the Belching Beaver Peanut Butter Milk Stout, the Terrapin Liquid Bless and even Mother Earth Sin Tax. This one on the other hand, though English and light, takes advantage of the cocoa nibs and vanilla beans. A combo that fares greatly with many beers. So without further a do, here is the Peanut Butter Cup Porter, Cheers!

Aromas:
Rich Peanut butter, Nutter Butter Cookies, oatmeal, banana hints, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, hint of dark fruit raisins, cocoa crispies, milk sugars, mild cherries, vanilla, caramel, brown sugar, dark cherries, cinnamon, mocha, vanilla, toffee, coconut and butterscotch.

Flavors:
Cocoa Crispies cereal, dark chocolate, milk chocolate, bakers chocolate, hazelnut, pecan pie hints, peanut butter chocolate Reece’s pieces, milk sugar, vanilla, caramel, oatmeal, Nutter Butter cookies, cinnamon hints, brown sugar, dark fruit raisins and mild cherries, roasted coffee notes, peanut shell bitterness, rye bread,mocha, toffee, toasted coconut, earthy notes and butterscotch hints.

Aftertaste:
chocolate peanut butter, dark chocolate, mocha hints, roasted coffee, vanilla, caramel, toasted coconut, ending with earthy notes dryness. No alcohol in the taste, easy to drink, creamy and buttery mouthfeel and medium to light body.

Overall:
Definitely exceeding my expectations a bit. Is this the better Peanut Butter Cup beer? Well, the addition of the cocoa nibs and vanilla beans can be sensed in the flavors and definitely does take the beer to the next level. I really can say I enjoyed this one a lot for what it is. There aren’t many peanut butter beers out there and this is a damn well represented one. All I hope is that one day they put this in bottle. Otherwise, if you are lucky, you can get this at the brewery.

Anime Corner:
Yui Takamura from Muv Luv Alternative/Total Eclipse was used for this pairing since her colors pair with the flavors of chocolate and peanut butter I have paired her with Liquid Bliss once so I wanted to bring her back to show a more chocolate perspective. While the strength is not on the beer per se, it surely is in the flavor. Surely that is explosive!

Sources:
http://gallery.minitokyo.net/view/590148

Sexy Betty by Nebraska Brewing

1471826_10101542532604260_786362468_n 1424582_10101542532998470_1049321028_n 1460225_10101542533148170_2067768172_nRating: 5.4/5

Sexy Betty by Nebraska Brewing is a 10% ABV Russian Imperial Stout aged in 50 year old American Brandy Barrels

Label:
A sweet nose greets the adventurous in this marriage of our Black Betty Russian Imperial Stout and 50 year old American Brandy barrels. An elegantly pleasant surprise wakes the palate which migrates from a hint of Brandy into the wonderfully lingering roasted malt character.
___

This is the first time I try a beer from Nebraska brewing. One of the main reasons is because they are pretty pricey brewery. Lots of the beer sold ranging into $20 or more per bottle. Since I have always over looked them, I decided to pick one up to see how worth the money they are. When looking t the label, I realized why they are so expensive. Aging beer in 50 year old barrels is no joke. That has got to be a very delicate process. This beer came out last year as the Inception series #3 which was aged in cognac, but this year, in brandy barrels, 

Aromas:
Roasted coffee, earthy hops, dark chocolate, like Old Rasputin, oak, vanilla, licorice, molasses, vanilla, light toffee, light marshmallows and rich dark fruits

Flavors:
The flavors are a lot like Old Rasputin if it was aged in Brandy, dark fruit, cherries, raisins, grape notes, plums, dark chocolate, roasted coffee, earthy hops, mocha and Kahlua. As it warms up there are underlying tropical fruit hints, bakers chocolate, flan, crème brulee, caramel, vanilla, oak, raisin bread pudding, figs, dark cherry yogurt hints, port wine notes and raspberry Chambord hints.

Aftertaste:
The sweet dark fruits, dark chocolate, brandy and coffee linger for a bit in the aftertaste. A sipper for sure but the best part is that you cannot taste the alcohol

Overall:
It is a great beer. Just let it warm up to the proper temperature and then you will see what the 50 year old Brandy really has to offer, lots of magic!! At first it was more like Old Rasputin, then, it changed and became more pleasant and delicious. Would I recommend this? Only if you can afford it really. If you cannot there are some other, and to a very good extent, Imperial Russian stouts that scream epic and exceed expectations more than this one. Although, this one is freaking great and worth trying even if once. So there you have it, expensive but it will be your choice, take her or leave her. Although she is calling your name 

Anime Corner:
Meiya Mitsurugi from the series Muv luv Alternative Total Eclipse is used in this pairing to show some of the label colors. The strength of the 50 year old Brandy and the ABV can be best represented by her armor, weapon and strength. The colors of her armor and looks also compliment the label. She is a Sexy looking girl in cybernetic armor.  If that still did not compliment the Sexy Betty part, I added Evelynn from League of Legends to compliment more.

Firestone XVII Anniversary Ale by Firestone Walker

1477982_10101531821254890_1963810206_n 1472989_10101531821145110_108429905_n 1470280_10101531821185030_808038373_n 579314_10101531821195010_287334108_nRating: 5.79/5* (Just like last years version, more difficult to explain. Strategy guide included)

Firestone XVII Anniversary Ale by Firestone Walker is a 13.3% ABV Strong Multi-liquor Barrel Aged Style Hybrid Blend Ale

Description: 
“We blended together 220 oak barrels and seven different beers creating something truly complex and exceptional.” – Brewmaster Matt Brynildson
Bravo / Aged in Bourbon and Brandy Barrels / 30% of Final Blend
-Imperial Brown Ale

Sticky Monkey / Aged in Bourbon and Whiskey Barrels / 25% of Final Blend
-English Barley Wine Brewed with Mexican Turbinado (brown) Sugar

Velvet Merkin / Aged in Bourbon Barrels / 15% of Final Blend
-Traditional Oatmeal Stout

Parabola / Aged in Bourbon Barrels / 15% of Final Blend
-Russian Imperial Oatmeal Stout

Double DBA / Aged in retired Firestone Union Barrels / 8% of Final Blend
-Double strength English Pale Ale

Helldorado / Aged in Bourbon and Brandy Barrels / 4% of Final Blend
-Blonde Barley Wine Brewed with Buckwheat Honey

Wookey Jack / 100% Stainless Steel / 3% of Final Blend
-Black Rye India Pale Ale

XVII ABV: 13.3%
___

This year’s batch is very special using. The strategy guide is even longer since they had winemakers assist with the project to get the right types of blends in constructing this beer. Holy shit is all I can say about the information of how much work and effort it took to make this. 

Aromas:
Chocolate, bourbon, vanilla, brandy, port wine notes, dark cherry, raspberry, coconut, oak, caramel, toffee, oatmeal raisin chocolate chip cookies, banana notes, marshmallow, rocky road ice cream, Mexican piloncillo, pecans, hazelnut, raisin bread chocolate pudding, flan, bourbon, rich brandy, candied apples, smoked wood, hint of tropics but very small and other complex fragrances. Crazy part is that it kept changing as the beer got warmer. 

Flavors:
Big Vanilla, toasted coconut, almond joy, toffee, caramel, dark chocolate, espresso, Barley wine, rye bread, flan, hazelnut, pecan pie whiskey, brandy, bourbon, chocolate, rich chocolate chip cookies on rocky road ice cream with cherries, strawberries, hazelnut, ferro rocher chocolate, pecan pie, special oak wood, oatmeal, maple, peach notes, pear, anise, mint, rich rye bread, butterscotch, brown sugar, marshmallows, tropical notes as it got warmer, and lots of other complex flavors. Damn, I ran out of lives, gonna have to start at the last save point.

Aftertaste:
Finishing off with like nice chocolate, port wine, maple syrupy notes, dark fruit oatmeal chocolate chips, marshmallows and oaky vanilla. Boozy notes here an there but everything plays well with the flavors

Overall:
Every year much more complex, much more exceptional. Does it beat out it’s predecessor XVI? Well, yes and no. By that I mean, let is age for a while. You see, the early XVI did not but damn, XVI 1 year later was doing complex virtuoso rock solos around my palette. Do not let that fool you though finding the complexities is difficult even if you have Tequila added like when XVI had PNC, “holy shit nice” is what I was tasting. Parabola by itself wins over all of them only because of the extra chocolate push into into the 6/5 range for extra credit for me. XVII was able to get super close to XVI 1 year later and actually beat the younger age one especially because of the Velvet Merkin complexities to have a hug back up. Magic maybe the bloodstream of the universe like Merkin is the bloodstream of this powerhouse beer. Longer strategy guide and all, this beer still kicking your ass .

Anime Corner:
Yui Takamura from the series Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipe is used in this pairing to show the hard work and dedication that was used to make this beer. Also, the colors of her armor are close to the colors of the beer label and box. Along with her companions, they represent the selections of individual beers that were selected in order to bring this beer blend into fruition. The colors may also be used to represent the dark fruit flavors, brandy, bourbon, chocolate and others. The Strength of the alcohol and the hard work are also represented by the Bushido code she follows as a samurai.