Life & Limb - Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 1,454 | Reviews: 743 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by weizenbob:
3.9/5 rDev -3%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4
This 500 ml corked & caged bottle was purchased at Shop-N-Save in Ludington, MI for $10.99. It is the 2011 vintage and was brewed with maple and birch syrups. I sampled this bottle around 50 degrees Fahrenheit. The cork came off with a loud pop. The bottle was poured into a Duvel tulip glass. A fairly aggressive pour manifests an aggressive four fingers of head. The head is khaki tinted. Retention is excellent. Lacing is not kidding around. The brew is a very dark brown, akin to maple syrup. The visual aesthetic of this beer is wholly reminiscent of a Belgian Quad.
The aroma reveals a high-gravity ale that is still very young. Alcohol is very far forward in the nose, suggesting a cross between malt liquor and barley wine. Other sweet aromas suggest maple and caramel but those secondary scents are totally outmatched by alcoholic heat. I fear that I opened this bottle far too early in its shelf life.
The flavor is somewhat better than the aroma was implying. The summation is that this brew tastes akin to a Quad that was brewed with maple syrup rather than candy sugar. Maple is the first discernable flavor on the tongue. It is expectedly literal and strong. Molasses follows. A minor cooked veggie flavor bleeds through the maple. Some earthy smokiness adds a nice balance to the sweetness. Some surprisingly piercing grapefruit hop bitterness manifests as the sweetness subsides. The bitter resins coat the mouth and linger for an unpleasantly long tenure. The finish is alcoholic, though far more in check than the aroma suggested. This one needs some age to tame some of the sharp edges. However, I’m tasting a lot of potential.
The feel is very nice. The body is full and the viscosity is nearly that of maple syrup. In fact, if it were any thicker I’d be tempted to drizzle it on a Belgian waffle. The carbonation level is relatively low, furthering the syrupy impression. Alcohol no doubt aides the smooth feel while warming the throat like brandy.
My overall impression of this Sierra Nevada-Dogfish Head collaboration is that I opened the bottle way too early. It has a great look and some nice raw sweetness. Still the drinkability is not very high at this point. The 10.2% alcohol is just too hot and the hopiness, though not overwhelming, seems totally out of place. Still, the price is not bad for what you get. I am definitely going to buy a second bottle to revisit in a year or two. Oh, and be sure to have a friend around to share this with. It’s a bruiser.
The Two-Schlitz Scale: (reference my profile for an explanation)
I give two Schlitz for this syrupy treat: one for life, and one for limb.
Serving type: bottle
12-03-2011 21:11:54 | More by weizenbob
More User Reviews:
3.01/5 rDev -25.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3
750ml bottle, Batch 2 (from 2011), poured into a Cantillon taster 7/7/2014.
A- Dark mahogany body with a half finger white head with limited retention. No lacing.
S- Smells interesting. A bit of cardboard, a bit of dark fruit, and a predominant sweet sugary maple syrup-like scent. This has clearly oxidized over the last 3 years, and while it still smells interesting, I am sure that it did not improve much, if at all.
F- Maple syrup, candi sugar, caramel, toffee. This has the elements of a generic strong ale with a distinct syrup character. There is some oxidation that detracts from it, though.
M- Medium body but with a sticky syrupy consistency on the finish; lower in carbonation, a bit difficult to drink given the strong oxidation that has taken place over the last 3 years despite being cellared properly in a wine fridge.
O- If you are still sitting on bottles of this, I would crack them open and see if it's come to a place where you like it. I don't think this has done very well with age on it.
Serving type: bottle
07-08-2014 03:00:09 | More by Stevedore
Life & Limb from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
90 out of 100 based on 1,454 ratings.