Innis & Gunn Winter Beer 2012 - Innis & Gunn
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Ratings: 125 | Reviews: 32 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by thehyperduck:
3.48/5 rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5
330 mL bottle from the LCBO. I used to be a big proponent of I&G, but in recent months I've begun to tire of their offerings - there's just too much overlap between most of them. I like oak and vanilla and all, but let's see some more variety, huh? I went out on a limb and purchased this one anyway.
Pours a deep, clear, brownish-amber colour with ruby highlights, topped with slightly more than two fingers of dense, creamy, light tan-coloured head that seeps away over the next few minutes. Besides the soapy film left behind on the surface, its only remnants are a 1 cm-wide collar of foam around the edge, and a continuous swath of lacing stuck to the glass above it. The aroma is very reminiscent of most I&G offerings, with the oak, vanilla and toffee notes making themselves very apparent, but with the extra addition of a sweet, syrupy, almost roasted note from the molasses/treacle.
Decent flavour, but as I suspected this comes across more as a tweaked version of their flagship oaked ale (or maybe their rum cask) than an entirely new beer. Caramel, toffee and oak come through at first, leading into the powerfully sweet molasses notes. Together, the treacle, with the dark fruit (dates or figs) and buttery feel, give off a bit of a maple syrup vibe. Finishes with some pleasant toffee sweetness and a weak hint of ethanol; the aftertaste is lingering oak and earthy hop dryness. Medium-bodied, with a decent thickness/chewiness to the body. Leaves a slick feel on the palate after swallowing, and the mild carbonation helps facilitate this. Not especially well-balanced, in that I could see the treacle sweetness becoming annoying after more than this serving.
I still feel that I&G makes good beer, but I have come to terms with the fact that they are a one trick pony. It's not that these oaked beers don't taste good, because they generally do. Rather, it's that they all kind of taste the same, with only a few discernible tweaks with each new specialty release. This bottle was a relatively cheap pick-up, and thank goodness for that because I might have skipped it if it were one of those bottle-in-a-carton deals that cost an extra 2-3 dollars.
Final Grade: 3.48, a serviceable B-. Innis & Gunn's Winter Treacle Porter is pretty much what I expected - a sweeter, boozier version of their base oaked ale. I&G fans with a sweet tooth may wish to give this one a try, but anyone who doesn't fall into that category (and isn't a big I&G homer to begin with) probably wouldn't be missing much if they skipped it. I could go either way on this one; I don't like it as much as their flagship oaked ale or their rum cask, but it's still a decent brew - just not one where the tweaks were tailored toward my preferences. The porter name is also fairly misleading, as I'd be more inclined to stuff this into the "English Strong Ale/Wee Heavy" box than the "stout/porter" one.
Serving type: bottle
12-30-2012 00:35:49 | More by thehyperduck
More User Reviews:
4.38/5 rDev +19.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25
Some age on this, the bottle reads: "Winter Beer 2012, Porter Brewed With Molasses." It came as part of a leftover 2012 threepack giftset of different Innis & Gunn beers and one of their flute glasses. My local store was selling them for $7 over the summer. I bought six. Such a deal for a beer that normally sells for $11+/4 and does not usually deteriorate for years.
Poured from the 11.2 oz,. bottle into a Samuel Smith English tulip glass.
a: Clear reddish-brown with a huge two inch tan head which receded slowly to heavy rocky surface foam and some lacing. Light-colored for a porter.
s: Strong booze and caramel malt. There may be no barrel-aged beer with more immediately obvious and persistent whiskey or rum aroma than Innis & Gunn, and this version is no different in that department.
t: Sweet malt under heavy boozy flavor that lingers a long time in the mouth. Any smokiness from either the dark malt or oak barrels is totally overshadowed by the liquor the barrels originally held. Yet 7.4 ABV feels more like 5.
m: Light, almost watery, surprisingly light given the color and head retention. Sinfully easy-drinking as a result.
o: If you want normal porter flavor, go elsewhere. The booze flavor from the barrel aging dominates over the caramel malt all the way. If you like that, and I do, you'll forgive the fact that the taste is otherwise off style, or that the "brewed with molasses" noted on the bottle is not really evident either.
Serving type: bottle
12-27-2013 06:20:32 | More by scotorum
3.6/5 rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
11.2 oz. Clear Bottle.
A: Pours dark brown to ruby red. Small tan head. No retention with very little lacing.
S: Oak. Molasses. Malts. Wheat. Sugary. Dark sweet fruits.
T/M: Malty. Molasses. Oak. Toffee. Wheat. Alcohol. Warming. Medium bodied. Smooth.
The finish is mostly clean with a linger of oak and wheat.
O: Interesting Porter. Flavorful. Boozy. The oak aging really helps the taste. A little watery
and kind of one sided. Not sure I have more than one.
Serving type: bottle
10-12-2013 22:04:47 | More by mnrider
3.71/5 rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
Part of the 2012 gift pack received for Christmas; notes are old but thorough.
The color is a sort of cherry wood red-brown, completely clear in the body though dark. It grows about a finger of loose off-white head that tightens up, shows pretty good retention, and leaves good spotting on the glass.
I feel as though not many Americans are familiar with treacle, but this beer's got it. As such, it offers more familiar notes of molasses and toffee, maybe with a little vanilla, certainly some caramel, some liqueur, and fruits within a substantial malts backbone. The nature of the beer is sweet, but it's not at all cloying. The flavor brings a little bit of the dryer aspects drawn from the wood than the aroma does.
As an English porter, while the body may seem light it's really not particularly, though there could be a little more to add some depth. otherwise it's got a meek bite and a pleasant smoothness.
Serving type: bottle
10-01-2013 18:43:48 | More by Brenden
Innis & Gunn Winter Beer 2012 from Innis & Gunn
83 out of 100 based on 125 ratings.