Beer critic

Voodoo’s spell of stupidity

I am stupid.
In support of that statement I tender the following evidence.
For the last two years I’ve been writing a beer column for the paper I work for, the Illawarra Mercury. Don’t get paid an extra for it – just do it to further the word of good beer (okay, okay, and get some free samples).
Last year I went to Newcastle during the city’s craft beer week and took part in a few events. One of them was a beer tasting at the awesome Albion Hotel. At the end of the night, after most people had left, the hosts broke out some rare stuff, which included a bottle of Rogue Voodoo Bacon Maple Ale.

Three bottles of Rogue Voodoo? That's three too many, as I discovered.

Three bottles of Rogue Voodoo? That’s three too many, as I discovered.I had a sample and was impressed with its unusual flavours. In a column after the event I wrote ‘‘While I’m not sure I could drink an entire 760ml bottle of the stuff, I heartily applaud the incredible craftsmanship that went into making the beer.’’

Then earlier this year I was invited up to Harts Pub in Sydney to sample some beers brewer Scotty Morgan had brought over to the US. That included the aforementioned Voodoo. And I had the same reaction – appreciate the effort, don’t reckon I could drink a whole bottle of it though.
To recap, that’s two separate instances where I tried Rogue’s Voodoo and came to the conclusion that I couldn’t drink a whole bottle of it.
Okay, here comes the stupid part.
When Slowbeer mention on Twitter that they have some bottles in stock, what do I do? I buy one of the damn things (along with some other stuff to make the postage costs worthwhile).
And, surprise, surprise, I couldn’t drink a whole bottle of the stuff. In fact, I couldn’t even finish my glass of the stuff.
On the nose the Voodoo is fine with it’s delicious smoky maple aroma. But things just don’t come together when I drank it. Well, after the first sip. That first sip is all ‘‘wow, it’s as weird and sweet and smoky like I remember’’. Then, every sip thereafter is all ‘‘Christ, how am I going to finish this?’’ and ‘‘Christ, I thought I’d get used to the flavour but it’s just not happening.’’
It’s an unpleasant smoky sweet mix, where neither the smokiness or sweetness taste real. And I couldn’t taste a goddamn bit of bacon.
Look, I think Rogue make some great beers but this isn’t one of them. It’s a novelty beer that seems to have become the great white whale for so many beer drinkers. Which is a great shame because the reality falls a long way short of the hype.
Would I drink it again?: Nope.

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