This here is a beer I’d looked at on the shelves at my local Dan Murphy’s for quite a while before buying it. Part of the aversion was due to the price – $6.55 for a 330ml bottle seemed a bit steep.
Another part of it was that it comes in a clear glass bottle and I’ve taken a dim view of beers that come like that because of the way they allow for light to degrade the beer. That’s why most beers come in brown bottles, because they don’t let light in which can degrade the hop flavour. So a clear bottle for me signifies a beer that isn’t made to last, rather it’s made in the expectation it’ll move off the shelves quick enough that people are drinking it before light can work its bad juju.
But this is a beer that seems to be a bit more fancy than those beers that are supposed to be drunk within minutes of hitting the bottle shop shelves. This is an oak-aged beer that is ‘‘carefully matured for 77 days prior to release’’. If you’re going to go to the trouble of putting something in okay for 77 days, why would you then risk screwing things up before the punter drinks it by putting it in a clear glass bottle? Weird.
The label promises a ‘‘smooth Scottish beer with hints of toffee, vanilla and oak’’. The oak and vanilla is there on the nose, as is a disconcerting hint of ashtray. Not the sort of thing that endears me to a beer.
That vanilla and oak is certainly apparent when I tasted it. Those flavours sit right up the front. At the back end, however, the beer takes on a sweet liquor flavour, which reminded me of a creme liqueur. Which wasn’t at all welcome, as I don’t like creme liqueur.
There’s also some whisky tones as well. Again not welcome as I had a bad experience with whisky as a teenager and have since avoided the stuff like the plague. So a beer that reminds me of that experience is quite unwelcome indeed.
So it’s a safe bet I’ll not be drinking this one again. Even if they start putting it in brown bottles.
Categories: aged beer
I’m with you on this one. I couldn’t see what all the hoo-ha was about. Although, I have to say that the Irish Whiskey Casked Stout is pretty good and I’m on the hunt for the Rum Casked one too.
I reckon I’ll skip the whiskey-casked one. Had a very bad experience once with whiskey and can’t go near the stuff any more.