Friday, January 24, 2014

REVIEW: 1st Place KLCC #52 The Caleb (Oak Aged Imperial Stout)

I do love a good Imperial Stout, and a Bourbon Aged one all the more.  they are way too overpriced to buy commercially.  But when you make one at home, it can be a thing of wonder.  At this point mine needs some more age on it as it is not everything I want it to be.  I'm hoping that pulling the keg and letting it sit until next year will add some depth and complexity, allow the roast and oak to shine.

Pours like an oil change on my 77 Ford F150.  Jet black, clear but completely opaque.  Dark brown head is thick and lucious, tiny bubbles, about a 1/4" high, fades to a whisp on top with thick ring around the edge.  Light lacing, and nice legs down the side.

Vanilla, wood, dark fruits, cherry and plum, char, hint of bourbon, chocolate, coffee grounds, roasted grain.  Hint of dark bread.

Chocolate, dark fruits, cherry and plum, burnt sugar, vanilla, charred wood, light nutty yeast, berry, clean alcohol notes.  Rich.

Silky smooth, full body, rich, light carbonation, oak tannins (a little too much), balancing hop bitterness, pulling roasted dryness in the finish lingers.  Alcohol warmth.

Very nice stout.  I really enjoy the depth of flavor, the creamy body, and the appeal of looking at this beer.  I was hoping for much more roast and much less dark fruit, but didn't get it.  I may have to cut out the darker crystal next time and add some Black Patent for more char and ash.  The oak is a little off.  It is still kind of hard to get in the aroma and flavor, but it shows up too much in the mouthfeel.  Needs more bourbon as this part is untraceable.

NOTE: This beer took 1st place in the KLCC BJCP comp in February 2014 in the Wood Aged Beers category.

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