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Innis & Gunn Canadian Cherrywood Finish - Innis & Gunn

Not Rated.
Innis & Gunn Canadian Cherrywood FinishInnis & Gunn Canadian Cherrywood Finish

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

41 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 41
Hads: 167
Avg: 3.83
pDev: 22.72%
Wants: 9
Gots: 22 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Innis & Gunn visit their website
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style | ABV
English Strong Ale |  8.30% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: biboergosum on 05-21-2013

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (28) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 41 | Hads: 167
Photo of charlzm
2.96/5  rDev -22.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

Consumed January 28th, 2014 from an unrefrigerated bottle purchased at Total Wine about five days prior. Poured into a Klokke Roeland goblet.

Beer pours crystal clear medium amber. A two-finger off-white head forms then settles down to a tenuous crown providing some sheeting.

Aromas are virtually non-existent. There's a vague maltiness, sort of like scorched caramel, but that's all I can pick up. Well, there's a suggestion of wood. Oh, and there's the maple syrup.

Flavor is kind of a mess. Somewhat sweet (maple syrup again) and a little oxidized with a backbone of mild diacetyl, I searched nearly in vain for a trace of cherrywood, but I finally picked it up. Or was it the power of suggestion? Malt flavor is so slight I can't even characterize it properly.

Beer is medium-bodied with low carbonation but quite warming. It drinks bigger than its 8.3% would suggest.

Overall, it's a lovely idea that wasn't executed well.

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Photo of Mumps
3.22/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a pilsner glass.

Had a good golden amber color with a decent 1 inch head.

Smelled pretty good. Good hoppy smell with a hint of cherry.

Taste was disappointing. Too sweet, too carbonated. It did have a hint of cherry in the back, but not pleasant enough to over come the bad qualities.

Mouthfell was also disappointing. As I said, it was far too carbonated, making if feel a little thin.

Overall this beer was somewhat of a let down, and I probably won't buy this again. I still hold hope for the company though.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.23/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Bottle: Poured a clear but dark amber color ale with a small foamy head with average retention and some lacing. Aroma of sweet malt notes with light woody notes. Taste is also quiet sweet which probably originated from the maple syrup. Body is light with medium carbonation. Too sweet for the style but nice used of cherry wood.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.26/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark amber/copper with a small fading head.
Nose shows sweet caramel and toffee, dry cut wood. Very sweet-smelling.
Sweet flavours too, big maple syrup notes, soft booze and sugary maple syrup. Too sweet, somewhat limited.
Carbonation could be higher.

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Photo of kevinlater
3.26/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

330ml into snifter, 7.4% abv

a: clear caramel-ruby hue with just under a finger of light tan head

s: skunked unfortunately, but other than that i'm picking up caramel, oak, alcohol, and shy raisin and vanilla notes. um, not that much different from the original oak-aged ale

t: follows the nose but with a very slight cherrywood presence on the finish. tastes just like the original ale, which is a fine beer, but i was hoping for a bigger cherrywood pop in this one

m: medium-plus mouthfeel with low carbonation

o: expected a lot more from this one. i'm rather disappointed

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Photo of tbeckett
3.32/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

From notes.

A - Poured ruby red with bright one finger light beige head. Very little spotty lace and an island film of retention.

S - Sweet cherry, sweet fruits, dark fruits. Mild, but you can pick up some good notes. A bit medicinal.

T - Sweet cherry again, dark fruit, cough medicine.

M - Good carbonation, medium to full body and a sweet fruity finish.

O/D - That medicinal note was a bit off putting and the cherry note came out as blueberry later too. Althought it wasn't too bad, it didn't impress me all that much.

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Photo of Jadjunk
3.44/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

"This limited bottling of Innis & Gunn has been matured over Canadian Black Cherrywood and then finished with the addition of maple syrup. To our knowledge, this is the first time that Cherrywood has been used to mature a beer. The result is a really full bodied Scotch Ale, with a rich lasting finish." Brewed in the style of an English Strong Ale, aged over Cherrywood Chips with Maple Syrup added. Available in 25.4 oz. bottles and on limited draft.

Poured from a 25.4 oz. bottle to a snifter glass.

(Appearance) Pours a frothy creamed head of a buttery white color over a densely hazy red-amber hued body with ample, relaxed carbonation. Retention is good and lacing is light and patchy. 3.75

(Smell) Biscuit malt and syrupy caramel, delicate maple aroma, cherry and a touch of drying vanilla, light pale wood aromas. 3.5

(Taste) Sweet, maple syrup and biscuit caramel body with delicate graininess, paired with a drying sensation of raw wood chips, some cherry-like tangy and syrupy fruit character. Overall quite sweet on the palate, although the wood character comes through fairly well to balance the sweetness out a bit. 3.5

(Mouthfeel) Texture is slick, lightly sticky, smooth, residual, and medium dry. Carbonation is mild, generating a light frothiness and a medium crisp finish. Body is medium for the style, medium+ overall. Balance is slightly sweet and sticky over tangy and bitter. Alcohol presence is mild and there are no off characters. 3.75

(Overall) Innis & Gunn have some potential with their limited wood aged beers, but I question the necessity of adding maple syrup to this beer, as it inevitably sweetens the whole beer up to near-cloying status and drags down the drinkability of the beer. The flavor of the cherrywood chips does add considerable cherry-like flavor to this beer, and I think that even though the finished product may have come out much lighter-bodied, that the cherrywood chips alone would have been enough to carry this recipe. Decent, but not very impressive ale from Innis & Gunn. 3.5

Innis & Gunn's
Canadian Cherrywood Aged Ale

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Photo of mick303
3.46/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served from the bottle at the Toronto Festival of Beer, this like several I&G offerings hit me as immediately really overwhelmingly sweet, with a woody vanilla tone, a lot of candied woody character, you definitely pick up a lot of the cherry wood aspects, which is interesting but also frustratingly overpowering, I found it too sweet and woody in comparison to some of the other things they have done.

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Photo of schwemjw
3.48/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark reddish copper.White fluffy head that really comes alive with a swirl.

S: Herbal and very dank. Cherry, biscuits and a slight splash of vanilla. Butterscotch rounds out this big buttery smelling beer.

T: Cherry! toffee and biscuits with a sweet vanilla and caramel on the edges of your mouth. Quite a bit of citrus with a playful hint of maple. Quite sweet.

M: Smooth with zero carbonation. Light to medium bodied with a sweet finish.

O: Very enjoyable. a desert beer for sure. lots of bright fruit and can be quite complex /82

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Photo of gerite
3.49/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Had this beer on tap at a local pub with fish & chips. Not much of a head with a little lacing. This was a very light tasting beer with a distinct cherrywood flavor. Somewhat woody but too sweet for my liking. Overall the beer went down pretty smooth and would make a good sipping ale for the summertime.

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Photo of spinrsx
3.5/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz Bottle from the Ottawa LCBO for $5

Appearance - Clear copper/amber colour with an average size frothy off white coloured head. There is an low amount of carbonation showing and there is some fair lacing. The head lasted for around 5 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, caramel/butterscotch, dark fruits

Taste & Mouth - There is an above average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, caramel, vanilla, and grassy hops. There is also a bit of sweet dark fruit/cherry flavour. It ends with a bit of a cherry cola like aftertaste.

Overall - Okay I guess.. perhaps a little cloying in a way. Something about reminds me of an icewine flavour wise. Anyways, worth a shot - but wouldn't pick up again.

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Photo of jazzyjeff13
3.55/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 330ml bottle with a BB of Oct 2015. ABV is stated as 7.4%. Purchased recently from a supermarket. Comes in a fancy presentation box; the label describes it as a Scotch ale matured in Canadian black cherrywood and finished with an addition of maple syrup.

A: Poured into a cervoise. A deep, clear reddish-amber hue with light carbonation. Yields a decent head of frothy beige foam that lasts for a moment before disappearing completely.

S: Aroma of sweet, fruity malt with hints of caramel, mild brown sugar, subtle maple syrup, raisins/dried fruit, woodiness, fruity yeast esters, a twinge of vanilla and faint stewed leaves. A whiff of warming booze in the background. Well-rounded and satisfying.

T: Tastes of sweet caramel malt with a fruity character and a lingering finish. Notes of caramel, mild brown sugar, a hint of maple syrup, subtle toasted grain, dried fruit, mild woodiness, fruity yeast esters, a whisper of marzipan and stewed leaves. Warming alcohol lurks in the background. Quite sweet, followed by a mild bitterness upon swallowing.

M: Mouthfeel is smooth and tingly, with soft carbonation and decent body. Somewhat astringent, accompanied by an aftertaste of sweet malt, dried fruit, yeast esters and stewed leaves.

O: A pretty good brew, though like many I&G beers not quite perfect. So-so looks; shame the head disappears too rapidly. The aroma and flavour are a pleasant mix of caramel malt, dried fruit, yeast esters and mild woodiness. The cherrywood adds something but the effect is subtle. Body is OK. The biggest problem is that the character seems too clean and polished - I reckon bottle conditioning would add a layer of complexity that would give it a boost. However, it goes down easily enough on a winter's evening. Worth trying if you come across it.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.65/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

330ml bottle, with nice cardboard packaging. Their base beer aged over bourbon-infused Canadian Black Cherrywood (is that really a thing?), and then finished with a dose of maple syrup (that I know is a thing!). I get the feeling that this is the 2013 version of the Canada Day series, without any explicit declaration thereof.

This beer pours a clear, dark copper amber hue, with two fingers of bubbly, moderately foamy off-white head, which leaves a few examples of coral reef island lace around the glass as it gently subsides.

It smells of somewhat edgy generic black fruit (no in your face cherry here), and semi-sweet biscuity caramel/toffee malt, with a hint of yeasty cookie dough. The taste is rather sweet, the maple syrup, sickly treacle-esque character coming out to play - a softly grainy woodiness the recommended takeaway from that, with a touch of more inwardly balanced dark fruitiness, a still sturdy caramelized, toffee-adjacent malt, and some pleasantly understated alcohol twinges rounding this one out.

The carbonation is quite low and unobtrusive/absent, the body an adequate medium weight, if a bit bolstered by the multifaceted sugary components, and equally smooth. It finishes on the sweet side, a typical side effect of this brewer, with the fruity wood, syrup, and malt all mashed and muddled on the palate.

For what it's worth, if you're ok with the sweetness, this is one almost slavish ode to Canadian sensibilities, which I'm sure was the intent all along. Maple, wood, and strong beer - what's a hoser not to like, other than that this happens to be made outside our borders? Imitation is the sincerest form, and all that, I suppose.

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Photo of Fatehunter
3.7/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a finger of foamy head on a clear amber colored body.
It has a rich aroma of maple syrup followed by wood, toffee, dry barley and candy corn.
The taste is a nice lemon bitter and maple syrup sweet mixture. It's fairly mellow (in a good way) for an aged beer with maple syrup added.
The texture has a stickiness to it with low to moderate carbonation.
Very enjoyable.

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Photo of Olek4374
3.7/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I suppose this is the "Canada Day" beer for this year. It's fairly expensive at just over $5.00 for 330ml, so it better be worth it.

It pours a light brown with some orange notes to it - a very attractive pour to be sure. The smell is sweet, woody and floral, but balanced out very nicely. The taste is difficult to describe as I find it to be a little sweet, but it's got some complex tastes, as well as a really fun, fruity aftertaste. I've had this bottle sitting in my fridge for a while, but it was in a box so I doubt light damage is an issue here.

I like that taste. It's honestly difficult to say what's going on, but rest assured i like it. Still, a bit sweet.

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Photo of RemDad
3.71/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bought this because my wife has a soft spot for maple beers. Pleasantly surprised. Can't taste much hops or maple. Sweet cherry predominates. First sip seems a bit too sweet but after that it just becomes delicious. You can certainly taste the alcohol, but it's very drinkable. Although others suggest it as a dessert wine we had it with sweet and savory pizza with good results. I will definitely buy again.

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Photo of DenisKolkin
3.74/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

330 ml clear bottle purchased from LCBO for $3.25 CDN. Served fairly cold into glassware. Yet another Innis & Gunn one-off that I haven't tried before. Still looking for the beer that I enjoy as much as the original. Maybe this will be the one. I hope so for my 350th review.

Appearance - Moderately aggressive pour lends itself to only a half finger of frothy off-white head that has next to no retention time. The beer itself is a coppery red in color and quite clear. Some residual wisps of head linger on top and the visible carbonation is fairly minimal.

Smell - The signature aromatic oak and vanilla shines through as always, There's a bit more of an earthy woodlike smell than usual, but nothing terribly different than the original.

Taste - Similar to the original with plenty of vanilla but this has a fruitiness (think cherries) combined with the vanilla for a moment or two in the middle of the sip before it dries out and transforms into a dry wooden slightly ashy flavor (in a good way) in the finish

Mouthfeel - Low carbonation although a touch sprtitzy for the moment it hits your lips, but afterwards definitely on the flat side and a dry finish that mingles well with the dry wooden ashy flavor; this is a satisfactory conclusion in my eyes. However, I wish the mouthfeel from the carbonation was a little more bold and consistent throughout. Alcohol is well hidden given this is about 1-2% higher in ABV than most of their offerings.

Overall - One of the better and more enjoyable ones from I&G, but still doesn't blow me away like the original did when I first had it, but with some slightly different nuances and a well hidden ABV, you could do far worse than this. At its price point, a definite try for I&G fans

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Photo of srhoadsy
3.74/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Served slightly chilled into a tulip.

Pours a beautiful clear copper color with an inch of light tan head that quickly recedes leaving a very light surface layer and lacing.

Aromas of whiskey, caramelized sugars, dried fruit and very mild hint of pineapple.

Flavors follow through the aromas with a slight peppery finish.

Light to medium bodied and sweet with a crisp dry finish. Moderate carbonation.

Overall a full flavored but fairly light bodied beer. Not my favorite from I&G, but a good beer to pair with a variety of cuisine.

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Photo of cindyjeffsmith
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: mostly clear bronze. Substantial tan head. Lots of bubbles.
Smell: a sweet, yeasty nose that surprisingly reminds of a tripel. Pleasant enough though no idea of this cherrywood thing. Maple is not prominent.
Taste: much like the nose though the maple appears in the finish.
Overall: nice enough. Not sure what the cherrywood treatment has done for it. Tasty.

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Photo of rangerred
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter out of a 750ml bottle.

Pours a clear deep ruby with a thick one finger off-white head. Really good head retention and lacing.

The first note I get in the aroma is the very typical Innis and Gunn oakiness. There is some cherry in there that is faint along with a bit of butterscotch.

The flavor has that heavy familiar oak up front but there is more depth to it with this beer. Some cherry is there along with butterscotch and sweet caramel. The maple syrup is detectable in the sweetness that is present but the actual flavor is quite faint. Pretty thick mouthfeel with quite a bit of sweetness and a sticky finish.

Overall, a decent, somewhat complex beer but it still misses the mark for me. The sweetness is a bit much and somewhat limits drinkability. Still, a nice effort by Innis and Gunn.

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Photo of joemcgrath27
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - hazy cedar red brown, one finger of tan had receded to a thin cover
S - definite woody and cherry aspects present, brown sugar and light grains
T - cherry flavour is there but maybe a little bit forced, woody and light earthy notes, some sugar and spice rounds it out with a hint of vanilla
M - relatively light, maybe a tad flat on carbonation, sticky sweet and coating through the finish
O - its a tasty brew with both the cherry and the wood making itself known, maybe a little too sweet for some but it suits me just fine

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Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.87/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up a few weeks back at the Total Wine in West Orange. I had some other Innis and Gunn beers recently and expected this to be a variation of their smooth, malty, and copper beers that I've become accustomed to and for the most part, that's what this turned out to be. This was strong in the alcohol department too but it never really felt it and like all of their other offerings, this went down smoothly and was a nice take on the style that only these guys could pull off!

The pour to this, was a dark copper, with a somewhat frothy head that faded shortly after pouring what I could out from the big bottle. Hardly any lacing to be seen as well and the carbonation was light as well, although there were a few traces of bubbles that could be seen after each sip. Not a terribly strong aroma to this but the taste more made up for it. The cherry was here but it was a lot more syrupy than sour, as there was some wood, raisin, currant, rye, and crystalline sweetness. The mouthfeel was quite smooth and left a somewhat oily residue on my mouth afterwards. It didn't feel like a Barleywine or a dark Belgian beer but there were signs of both here as this was potent and dark while not being overbearing, which doesn't surprise me at all given that this is an Innis and Gunn offering.

The 1 pint, 9 oz. bottle took a long time to down and much of it had to do with the alcohol. It could be viewed as too similar to the other, more popular beers from these guys but for me, this was a nice example of what an English Strong Ale should be. The hops aren't here but everything else is and someone looking for a good dessert beer to split without the sour tartness of the cherries would be wise to start here. Innis and Gunn beers are different and not for everyone but those who are patient will be well rewarded with a subtly smooth and strong beer that's worth the time it takes to finish it off.

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Photo of Glennam
3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Found this beer on display in my local distributor. Intrigued by the cherrywood. Cracked it open with a friend and was immediately impressed by the thick reddish head. Poured it into a pint glass and admired its coppery red/ orange color. Took a sip and absolutely loved it. Not sure about tasting any cherrywood but definitely a lot going on. Slightly sweet with a touch of the alcohol. Nice mouthfeel and goes down smooth. Recommend it!

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Photo of gr0g
3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mahogany in color with a soapy, one-finger foam cap. True to its name, the aroma is cherry and oak forward. Smells pretty sugary and rich. Sweet toffee malt component. As good as this smells, I'm hoping it's not overly sweet and unbalanced.

So... the flavor profile is sweet and unbalanced, BUT... not excessively so. This is drinking much like a "light barleywine," if such a thing could exist. Sweet upfront, with lots of cherry and oak. Sweetness holds on all the way to the finish, where some oakiness lingers. Carbonation is light and not very visible, appropriate and complimentary to the flavor.

Much like the rum cask version of Innis and Gunn, this fits solidly into the "after dinner" beer category. A sweet, malt-forward ale that's not all that complex but quite enjoyable.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.91/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The brew pours a copper-amber color with a billowy just off white head. The head had a lighter level of retention, fading rather fast to leave light lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma was sweet being a mix of darker fruits of cherry and fig as well as a maple syrup and caramel smell. Along with these sweeter smells so too comes some nice oak and biscuity malt aromas. A little bit of alcohol and spice also comes to the nose creating a warming sweet woodsy smell overall.

Taste – The taste starts out with a sweeter caramel and lighter dark fruit flavors of cherry, plum and fig. Along with the sweeter flavors upfront are some biscuit malty flavors as well as a little bit of oak. The oak grows stronger while the biscuit loses strength as the taste moves on. Along with the biscuit fading so too does some of the caramel only to be replaced by a more candied sugar, toffee and maple syrup taste. In the end the oakiness mixed with some alcohol booziness to give a sweeter whisky like taste which when combined with all the fruit, sugar and light malty tastes ends up leaving a smooth, sweet, and warm taste to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel- The body of the brew is on the thicker and creamier side with a carbonation level that is on the lower side. The thickness is quite nice for the sweeter flavors of the brew with the lighter carbonation helping to create a more warming feel in light of the boozy and oaky flavors of the brew.

Overall – A rather enjoyable brew overall. It is sweet of maple, fruit and other sugars but is balanced out by some of the wood, boozy and biscuit malt flavors of the brew. A nice one to give a go to.

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Innis & Gunn Canadian Cherrywood Finish from Innis & Gunn
86 out of 100 based on 41 ratings.