Smuttynose Zinneke - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose ZinnekeSmuttynose Zinneke

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very good

106 Reviews
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Reviews: 106
Hads: 386
Avg: 3.8
pDev: 21.84%
Wants: 10
Gots: 37 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company visit their website
New Hampshire, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  8.40% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Todd on 10-25-2012

Belgian-style stout, partially aged in bourbon barrels.

8.4% abv 50 IBU
Malts: North American 2-Row, Carawheat, Munich 10L, C-120, Chocolate,
Roasted Barley, Brown Malt
Hops: Magnum, Glacier
Mojo: Dark #2 Belgian Candi Syrup
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 106 | Hads: 386
Photo of sentomaster
2.32/5  rDev -38.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This beer was disgusting. I was really expecting something pretty awesome because Smutty usually delivers the awesome- not this time. looked nice enough in the glass; dark brown almost black with a nice three finger head.

The smell is where this went south fast. Smelled a bit funky and like old leather shoes. Really no trace of any barrel influence. The taste pretty much follows with some oak and maybe a touch of vanilla. Hard to tell what's buried, if anything, under the initially unappealing flavors of musty leather and weird earthy root like flavors. There's no dark fruit or real sweetness- or if there is it's just getting muddled away in the rest of the weirdness going on here.

This beer is just a mess that has too much going on and ends up going nowhere fast. Drainpour #3 in my life I think.

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Photo of cavedave
2.56/5  rDev -32.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

Darkest brown, thick looking, big topper of light brown foam that really hangs in. Perhaps this beer's best feature.

Woaah, didn't think I would smell all the flavors advertised, but wheat, dark malts, belgian yeasts, and candi sugar are all big players here in a rendition called, on its label, a stout. Fruity, yeasty and sweet roast, sort of coffee in there.

This Belgian Wheat Stout, aka BSDA, good catchall, has a strong and muddled taste of all above, and no barrel in taste or nose. Plenty of sweet in it, and not so much in a good way. Dark fruit for sure, but also not playing well with the myriad rooty and roasty notes that rule the end of the sip. Not delicious, but points for strange.

Here is the biggest fail, syrupy, and clingy in a bad, mediciny sort of way. Med. carb. but maybe too much, maybe too low, maybe it doesn't matter. Not a clean linger TSTL.

Some would argue a Belgian Wheatwine Stout BSDA is a bad idea. I would agree with them. This yeast doesn't play well with other flavors here. I wouldn't get this again, suggest you do the same.

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Photo of projektyle
2.68/5  rDev -29.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

22 oz. bomber poured into a pint glass. Looks great, smells good, although the hint of cherry gives me a slight foreboding. I drank this while watching the SEC Championship game, and I am a Georgia fan, so that may have colored my impression of the beer, although I tried to judge it objectively. The key words that sum up my experience were thin, sour, and fizzy. These are not features I look for in a stout.

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Photo of Bendurgin
2.78/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a tulip. This one pours black with a thin tan head.

The first aroma noticed is bananas with hints of licorice in the background. Tough to notice anything else for the yeast is a bit overpowering but notes of chocolate in the background. Charred coffee on the pallet with some slight barrel notes. The yeast is a bit toned down in the pallet.

The boy is medium with coarse carbonation. Overall this one is okay. Drinkable but it i don't notice much of the barrel and the aroma is pretty one dimensional.

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Photo of donnyowens
2.91/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Belgian yeast with a stout just doesn't work for me. the two tastes are in opposition and cancel themselves out. somebody may love this just not me.

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Photo of maximum12
3/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Try to pick up any new Smuttynose when I hit the Wisconsin border, since just about every beer they make is good. Another pickup, here. 22 oz. bomber split with my wife.

Pour is appropriately black, with the fizzy coffee head that I've come to expect from dark beers of Belgish lineage. Nose is kicking the irony out of the color: bananas? Cloves? Is this a hidden hefe? Also rich milk chocolate...ain't this a palette of weird.

Zinneke is as confused as the smell promised. More overripe bananas lightly coated with chocolate sauce. Mild roast flails through in the middle, cut with oatmeal, weapons-grade carbon, & a tangy medicinal quality that's very unappealing. Faint hop bitterness &, finally, whisper of vanilla & bourbon right at the end. Very thin, this would barely quality as a porter.

Love the experimentation, but this one falls flat for me; the tastes are just a tangled mess of jumbles. Mediocre? Seems like an inappropriate word, but in the end, it fits.

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Photo of Ryan011235
3.01/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a Duvel tulip on 1/30/13

Bottle conditioned in 2012

The color is a medium caramel brown, though it it close to black in the glass. A nearly three finger head deflates slowly over several minutes leaving a few spots of lace lingering. Thin retention. Good lace starts in about halfway through the glass.

Kind of an odd aroma with this one. Roasted chocolate and molasses, bourbon-soaked raisins, prunes, candi sugar, yeast spice, leafy herbal notes, wood, dark cherries, apple butter and blackberries all with a large helping of spiced bread. It never quite comes together.

The spices in this thing, oh my goodness. Zinneke is a ringer of a bedfellow for the spice rack crowd. Dry and tongue-scathing. It's a big jumble of spiced bread, nippy whiskey and yeast. Scorched chocolate and some dark roast. Modest fruit notions. The chocolate is slightly sweeter and lush as the beer warms up.

Medium feel with a teething grittiness from the spices and accentuated carbonation. The finish is spicy and charred oak on the dry, dry, dry finish. I do like the feel.

For what it's worth, drinking this beer leaves me with some of the same palate sensations as smoking a cigar. As an interesting beer, 10-12 ounces would have been more than sufficient. The whole bomber is drinkable but taxing.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.16/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

BOTTLE: Brown glass. Branded black pry-off pressure cap. Decent label art. 650ml.

Acquired: at an Austin, TX bottle shop.

Reviewed live at low altitude in Austin, TX. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

Vintage: November 2014.
ABV: 8.7% ABV.
Style: "Belgian style stout."
Serving temp: Cold. Allowed to warm over the course of consumption.
Serving vessel: Tulip.
Expectations: High (given the brewery).

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: Half finger wide khaki colour. Okay creaminess. No lacing sticks to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

Retention: ~20 seconds.

BODY: Opaque solid black colour. No yeast particulate or hop sediment is visible.

Generally appealing. Not unique or special.

AROMA: Belgian yeast is evidenced. Dark malts, black malts, unrefined sugars. No hop profile is detectable. I find no alcohol. Mild roast.

Aromatic intensity: mild.

Suggests a somewhat thin but still interesting stout with mild Belgian influence.

TASTE: Dark malts, schwarz malts, unrefined sugars. The Belgian yeast is noticeable but not prominent, and I think the mouthfeel is a bit thinner as a result of the higher attenuation. It's not real intricate or subtly executed, nor is it well-layered or gestalt in its build, but I do like it, and it's decently balanced. There just isn't a whole lot going on considering the style.

As it comes to temperature, I pick up on some raisin.

Depth of flavour: Merely average.
Flavour duration: Average.
Flavour intensity: Below average.
Flavour amplitude: Nice.

TEXTURE: Smooth, wet, undercarbonated, medium-bodied, and of mild weight and heft on the palate.

Not oily, gushed, hot, boozy, astringent, harsh, rough, or scratchy.

Complements the taste nicely, but doesn't feel custom-tailored to the taste by any means.

OVERALL: Drinkable, but pedestrian. A swing and a miss from Smuttynose. I wouldn't buy it again, but I appreciate what they were after. Worth trying, I suppose, but not one of Smuttynose's best offerings.


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Photo of utopiajane
3.2/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Pours dark brown and clear with honey tones around the edges and a ruby tint can be found when the light hits it right. Tan head of reluctant foam that fell fast. Mild nose, a little roast and faint dark fruits. Cherry, a touch of candi sugar, a fleeting hint of bourbon, again all very mild. Nothing belgian or yeasty on the nose at all. Taste is smooth. Rolling soft malt and no carbonation at all.This definitely needs some bubbles. Roast is mellow, dark fruits dried and sweet. A touch of spice finishes this one with a trace little bit of bitterness and a breaddy with molasses malt to linger. Nothing really belgian on the palate either.

With the proper carbonation this beer may have been very different on the palate. The malty flavors were good but they fell flat with the lack of body.

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Photo of beagle75
3.22/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a bomber into a tulip glass.

A: Hazy, dark brown color with less than one finger of diminishing mocha-tinted foam head. Scant lacing remains on the glass and beige sediment remains at the bottom.

S: Dark vinous fruit, anise, and an integrated combination of scorched malt and bitter chocolate. No alcohol is detected.

T: Begins off-dry, with early vinous fruit and heavy yeast metabolites. Acidity is mild into the middle where refined roasted malt is compartmentalized by persistent banana esters. Although the entire profile is a potent mix of earth and almonds, it becomes distinct during the finish as some of the yeast complexity eases. Although alcohol is suggested in the form of fancy liquor, it does not stand out.

M: Thin to medium viscosity, wet and acidic on the palate, with moderate carbonation.

D/O: A stout with stronger-than-normal yeast influences, this beer delivers on the Belgian promise but neglects the purported barrel aspect. The sensory qualities are divided between rich earth and yeast-affected fruit, probably to the detriment of this beer's overall character.

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Photo of dirtylou
3.24/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

22oz bomber, a gift

Served in half acre goblet - dark bodied with a light mocha head. I am not a Smuttynose enthusiast, though I know they are more capable than this. Smuttynose calls this a 'belgian style stout'. I guess I should be honest and state that I think the words 'belgian' and 'stout' should not be combined - the clash of yeast strains and dark roasty malt is very offputting to me. They sat this sucker in bourbon barrels for a bit too, but that's lost in the shuffle. Too bitter, too roasty - a mess

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Photo of DavoleBomb
3.27/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a snifter.

3.5 A: Black color. Light brown creamy/frothy head. Retention is about average and a decent sized ring of lacing is left.

4.0 S: Nice nose on this. Christmas cookie spiciness meshes well with smokiness from the bourbon. Sweet caramel, dark candi sugar, plum, prune, raisin, and tobacco. Smokey bourbon with notes of leather, vanilla, and oak. Sweet, spicy, and complex nose.

3.0 T: The taste is more bourbon flavored than the nose. Much of the spiciness and sweet maltiness gets lost behind leathery and smokey bourbon. Vanilla and oak. Missing depth from the base beer. That's about all there is to say.

3.0 M: Lighter medium body. Carbonation is a little bity without being spritzy or creamy. Just decent here.

3.0 D: Eh, it's alright, but it's nothing special. I've never been a huge fan of bourbon and Belgian, but I still can't help myself from giving it a try.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.3/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Since I pretty much try any of Smuttynose big beer series I reluctantly found this one for sale at Halftime beverage for $7.50. Its a tad more expensive but bourbon barrel treatment usually costs a bit more...

A - Looks like a stout I could get into. Pours is very dark and very thick especially for only 8%. I only got a 1/4 of an inch of mocha head but it seems to stick around for a bit. Very sticky lacing to boot.

S - Well it's very woody and as some Belgium dark fruit like dried plums and raisins. Just a mild if any twang of bourbon which mixed well with the roast and caramel like malts. Hopefully it tastes as good.

T - Very strange it starts off as a nice Bourbon stout but quickly falls to a sour cherry and leather kind of taste that leaves a medicinal herbal tea/coffee taste. Finish is clinging bitter and has some roasty aspect. I can drink it but I am not sure I want to... Who enjoys these flavors?!?!?

M - Much more medium bodied and creamy than the initial thick pour but kind of a mess of flavors.

Overall I am not sure what they were trying to accomplish or even if they drank it before it went out the door. To tell you the truth I was pretty much hoping it was a Belgium imperial stout like Weyerbacher tiny but I was TOTALLY wrong.

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Photo of cbutova
3.38/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review #999. Thanks to Atremains for sharing this.

A- Pitch black beer poured into four pint glasses for a tasting. A light tan head forms to about a finger in size and has decent retention. A nice amount of creamy lace patches.

S- Definitely Belgian. The yeast shows up pretty big with notes of banana, spices, raisin and dark fruits. Beyond that some highly roasted malts and a bit of vanilla as well. The banana aroma here is very big.

T- Starts out with a huge roasted grains profile. The Belgian yeast comes out big-time especially with warmth. A big helping of banana, cloves, raisins, dark fruits and spices. Some dark candi sugars, a tiny bit of oak and vanilla. Not getting much of the barrel influence.

MF- Moderately thick body with creamy, moderately high carbonation. A bit of alcohol warmth and some roasty bitterness.

Not really seeing much of the barrel influence here besides maybe a bit of vanilla and tiny bit of oak. The roastiness is just straight roast, no cocoa or coffee feel to me which is nice for a change. The yeast is massive with huge dark fruit and spice, especially as more time goes by.

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Photo of jlindros
3.42/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours light fizzy head covering, semi clear mahogany dark color.

Nose Belgian esters, phenolic and glue like phenols unhappy yeast, light Belgian chocolate, dusty oak, faint cocoa dust, cola syrup.

Taste starts with some cocoa, Belgian choc, light caramel and syrupy flavors, fairly sweet, light booze, back to esters, slight phenolic glue again but not as much as the nose, very faint oak, no bourbon, little yeasty flavor and light biscuit. Finish is sticky syrupy, little earthy herbal hop, biscuit, bbq sauce like flavor with syrupy sweetness, little cocoa, light phenols lingering.

Mouth is med to bigger bodied, decent carb, little slimy.

Overall not very good. Off flavors, unhappy yeast like it got too hot during fermentation, yeasty too, very little barrel, slimy, too estery, just overall not pleasant. Smuttynose really seems to be going in the wrong direction these days, their new beers haven't been very good, and even their old beers seem like they are losing a little something.

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Photo of brewcrew76
3.43/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Dark brown with a thin tan head settling to a ring of foam.

S - Milk chocolate, alcohol ,clove, banana and belgian yeast notes. Light vanilla and bourbon. Sweet.

T - Lightly roasted malt, sweet belgian candi sugar, clove, alcohol, some char, cocoa and over ripe banana. Not much bourbon barrel in taste

M - Medium body and slightly sticky. Stinging carbonation on the tongue.

D - Disappointed with this one. A little hot and messy tasting.

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Photo of argock
3.44/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz brown bomber into a clear glass snifter. No precise bottling date although "Bottle conditioned in" notched at 2012 on left side of label. Purchased at Market Street WIneshop (Charlottesville, VA) for $7.99.

A: Very dark brown to almost black with brownish edges and short 1 finger cap of off-white head with below-average retention and no lacing.

S: Strong sweet banana aromas with light clove note followed by milk chocolate and a very slight roasted note.

T: The yeast character is also strong in the flavor as in the aroma with a lot of clove and banana. It tastes like a chocolate dipped banana in a lot of ways, very sweet but with a lightly roasted edge. I am not digging the Belgian character that much as the clove note doesn't work well with the sweeter stout notes. A bit of sour dryness in the finish. I get no barrel character at all in this beer aside from possibly the dry finish.

M: Very smooth with low-to-average carbonation and medium body at most.

O: Pretty disappointing and not one I'll revisit. Very odd combination of flavors that really don't mesh well at all and leave an muddled beer in the final rundown.

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Photo of ThickNStout
3.45/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

22oz bottle from Hop City (Atlanta, GA). 7.99. Bottled in 2013. Served in a Terrapin snifter.

Pours black with a quickly dissipating 2 fingers of pale tan head. Very little head.

Smells of odd yeast, dark fruit and smoke.

Taste is a bizarre mix of stout and quad. Roasty smoke, dark cocoa, cherry pits, toffee, burnt sugar, funky semi sour yeast, faint vanilla, woodsy bourbon and lemon peel. A whole lot going on.

Slick medium feel with slight but present effervescence. Funky sweet bourbony finish.

Not a bad beer but it's not quite my thing. A interesting blend of styles. I think I'll stick to either full on quads or imperial stouts.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.45/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a two-finger off-white head that fades slowly leaving some lace. Black color, faint ruby highlights. Light carbonation and medium bodied. Roasted chocolate nose and flavor is chocolate, hints of caramel and bourbon. Bottle conditioned 2012, $6.79 for a 22oz bottle from Bert's Better Beers Hooksett, NH

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Photo of brod25
3.48/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Hints of vanilla, caramel, dark fruit and bourbon on the nose. Poured dark brown with a thank tan head and appears reddish brown in the light. Tastes of roasted malts, plums and raisins with a bourbon and dark chocolate finish. Decent overall, starts a little sweet and finished bitter.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.52/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to DrAwkward82 for sharing this one at GRG1313's tasting.

Pours an almost opaque super dark brown with a foamy khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, and slight bourbon aromas. Taste is much the same with cocoa and bourbon flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is tasty but fairly subdued for a barrel aged beer.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle conditioned in 2012
(Served in a tulip glass)
A- This beer pours an opaque black body with a thick coco tan head that last for a short bit. There are strands of microbubbles trailing up the side of the glass.

S- The yeast ester aroma of raisins fades away quickly with some more full black roasted malt aroma and a fusel alcohol heat note finishes.

T- The dry roasted black malt has some dark tootsie roll flavors as the beer opens. There is a roasted black bitterness in the finish with some mellow alcohol heat. Some faint burnt toast notes and slight hints of dark fruit esters come through when it is pretty warm.

M- The medium-light mouthfeel has a tight fizz and a gentle alcohol heat lingers.

O- This beer has a nice black roasted malt flavor but it is otherwise a bit thin and a bit to hot in alcohol. There isn’t much yeast characteristics that it really needs for support or any other hop or malt flavors to add depth to the beer.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured on tap into a snifter glass at Churchkey DC.

A Dark walnut brown body is presented, with hints of red dark edges. Faint tan head is poured, not much retention, falls quite quickly leaving a super thin collar, quite soapy.

Nose has a neat fruit spice character to it, kind of a sweet licorice mild anisette a bit. With some warmth some sticky caramel too, but nothing that really appeals to me unfortunately.

Palate hits with the hinted sharp spice angle, almost peppery. A very light tannic wood, even mild smoke with large charring roast finish. Feel is a little thin. Some fruit character becomes more apparent kind of like a dirty soil earthy plum.

Overall real interesting palate, perhaps not an ultimate favorite to want again but certainly memorable.

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a shaker pint glass.

Stumbled onto this bottle during a recent trip to a nearby Binny's and felt it would be perfect for our New Year's Eve festivities. It pours a a bleak black-brown topped by a finger of sandy tan foam. The nose comprises cocoa powder, dark chocolate, and very light bourbon. The taste brings in more of the same, with a stronger sense of whiskey. Not much Belgian character is to be found here, at least by my tongue's reckoning. The body is a light-leaning medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a fluid feel. Overall, a solid beer, though the lack of any Belgian character, the relatively thin feel of the proceedings, and the general lack of complexity in general lead to a kind of nigh-disappointment on my end. In other words: this is indeed a tasty and enjoyable beer, but nothing much more than that.

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Photo of Thickfreakness
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours near pitch black with no highlights around the edges. A thin, crispy, kahki colored head that fades quickly and leaves little touches of lacing sticking to the sides.

S- Dark fruit that was gently smoked, dark Belgian cocoa powder, black iced coffee, roasted hazelnuts/pecans/walnuts/almonds, and maybe just a touch of the bourbon... smells more like a peaty scotch. Nice, not spectacular... but nice sitting by the fire and sniffing.

T- Some cocoa, smoked malt (or charred barrel), some sour cherry yeastiness. Picking up a little booze. Gentle notes of over-ripe banana, light coffee, figs, dried cranberries and roasted walnuts.

M- Pretty thin and whimpy. Nice bitter chocolate finish. Just a light touch of booze.

O- This is a good, not great effort from Smuttynose. The bourbon has more of a single malt scotch taste to me... lots of smoked peat, not so much vanilla/oak/maple syrup. Again, decent... but nothing that I'd be running out looking for.

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Smuttynose Zinneke from Smuttynose Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 106 ratings.