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Southern Charred (2013) - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Southern Charred (2013)Southern Charred (2013)

Educational use only; do not reuse.

47 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 47
Hads: 383
Avg: 4.28
pDev: 32.94%
Wants: 81
Gots: 111 | FT: 20
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  12.60% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: SuperbikeShaun on 11-08-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

2012 Double Bastard Ale aged over a year in three types of barrels, including virgin charred American oak.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 47 | Hads: 383
Photo of Stum-pub
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

batch #7 13 months later...
500ml corked and caged bottle served in a tulip.
Pours a reddish brown with a finger of light tan head.
could honestly say its my favorite beer ive ever had
the taste of sweet pineapple, worth every penny!
Shout out to freddy on shipment since ct wasnt getting any!!!

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Photo of mrotstein
5/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A - Pours very dark brown with no head whatsoever. You can hold this up to a spotlight and see nothing through it.

S - Strong Ale+ Bourbon + Bourbon and then some bourbon. That about sums it up.

T - Fantastic barrel aged Ale with lots of dark thick rich coffee and malt, with the bonus of mouth filling whiskey. Rich, thick, and a real mouth filler

M/D - Mouthfeel is creamy, rich, but also strong and hearty. THis is as drinkable as 12% barrel aged stouts get, it's still a slow sipper that the taste character continues to come out as the beer warms up.

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Photo of SuperbikeShaun
4.99/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Deep golden in color, cloudy appearance. Almost no carbonation. The smell, oh the smell! Heavenly notes of caramel, toffee, vanilla, light smoke. Flavor follows the nose, HUGE bourbon flavors. Phenomenal mouthfeel with a long finish. Honestly, one of the best bourbon barrel aged beers I've had, not quite as good as Black Tuesday but up there with Uncle Jacob's.

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Photo of RutgersEng
4.96/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Thanks Dan for sharing this bottle and Tom and Tony for making it a fun experience. First off, I have to say that I like (No Love) Double Bastard and this tasting was a side by side with a 2012 DB (the base beer) and Southern Charred.

The SC poured darker than DB, a signal that the barrel had a marked effect on the beer. There wasn't much of a head, but the liquid was was thick with nice lacing on the glass.

The aroma was the first hint that there was magic in that bottle. While the DB had a nice hoppy scent, the SC overwhelmed the senses with butterscotch and caramel and all manner of sweet delights. It's as if you were about to dive into a whole bag of Werther's. There was a hint of bourbon and vanilla to go along with the caramel.

The taste was exactly what your nose was telling you. Candy, butterscotch and caramels pouring out of the glass, with just a hint of bourbon to let you know where this was coming from. The alcohol was not overwhelming, with the base beer just picking up a little over 1% from the bourbon barrels. But where did the sweetness come from. It didn't say that Stone backed up a truck of molasses and poured it ito the DB. That charred new oak barrels must have left there mark on this ambrosia. The DB hops were present on the finish, but ever so lightly as to play with the back of the tongue and let you know this beer is royalty.

Stone has done a massive job of taking a very good, but rough hoppy beer, and scrubbing and sanding it to a smooth delightful sweet treat from your youth. If it got any sweeter you would have to slice it and serve with ice cream. The final tell was the fact that after finishing the SC, the DB was still sitting in its glass a lone observer to the perfection it had become.

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Photo of elNopalero
4.76/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Official/written review #1100!

For a special occasion. Poured this from a bottle gifted to me.

Bottled in October, 2013, from a series of beers aged for years.

My expectations were extremely high for this beer and it did not disappoint.

This poured a raisin brown-amber in color with lightly brown foam. It has an amazing aroma that reveals itself in successive waves as it warms and opens. Let’s see… There’s bourbon, cornflakes and vanilla, that moves over allowing some stone fruits, with a rum and raisin character, which then dances with some caramel malt complexity and just a hint of what must be the lingering hop presence, all green and sticky like a drop of pine sap on the finish. The flavor is no less layered and rewarding. Fiery, hot, vanilla, oaky, spicy, and smooth, with a peppery kick and a long, dry finish. With each successive sip I get more and more out of this beer. The closest I can compare it to is Founder’s Backwoods Bastard, but even there the comparison falls somewhat short. Worth a try if you can still find it, worth a share if you get it, and worth another once it’s gone.

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Photo of BenwayPHD
4.75/5  rDev +11%

Pours a dark orange brown color with a one inch tan head. Smells delicious. orange, bubblegum, sweet bread, cardboard. The bourbon is milder on the nose than i would have thought, but that's probably because of the heavy hop aroma. In the mouth you get all that sweet vanilla and caramel from the bourbon with a strong wood presence. It's very creamy. I like this beer a lot. One of my favorite of Stone's barrel offerings.

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Photo of vitALEity
4.71/5  rDev +10%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Dark red/mohagony
Huge Head and retention
Smell is lighter then I expected but there is caramel, toffee, vanilla, oak
Smooth mouthfeel. Very smooth. Not a lot ofcarbonation
Taste is Oak, Whiskey. Also oak and whiskey with a bit of oak and whiskey

This is how you do it folks.

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Photo of santomark
4.67/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Appearance - Pours a deep rich caramel color, very little head, probably less than a finger width of head. Head was off white.

Smell - Sweet, fig, caramel, a breathe of bourbon, vanilla, smokey, finishing sweet.

Taste - Sweet, tastes of fruit that would pair well with chocolate, caramel, fig, molasses, oaky, woods, bourbon and ends with this smokeyness that comes out the nose. Very nicely done.

Mouthfeel - Heavy thick body, almost syrupy. You can see the remnants flow down the glass with each sip. Very warming, silky, mild carbonation, this pleasant calming from the fruitiness.

Overall - This is pretty good IMO, a must try for any Stone lover or lover of barrel aged beers. This definately has set the stand for me on how a barrel aged beer should taste, very complex. They really have brought every element of this beer. The bourbon is massively obvious and refreshing and does add a twist to this favorite of mine.

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Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.54/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into a snifter.

The beer produces a huge, chewy, frothy head. The beer itself is very cloudy and unfiltered in appearance and has a color reminiscent of a Belgian. The color is like the skin on a plum or red grape.

I hear a lot about beers smelling like saddlebags, but this is the first beer that strikes me as having that aroma. The beer has a bit of a bitter/sour aroma that is earthy and leather-like. There are some reisnous hop aromas floating around in there as well. Some booze is present on the nose, but it is not overwhelming or dominant.

I get a blast of vanilla on the tongue almost immediately. Spicy hops bite the tongue and a bitter resin lingers. There's a lot of caramel-like flavor popping up as well, which then finishes with some bitterness from the big amount of hops.

Charred may be a misnomer here, as smooth is what I think of more. This is easy-drinking, smoothy and creamy on the mouth. The beer has its bitter moments, but I'm not left with a bitter blast at the finish and the booze is well masked.

This beer is too well-distributed to get the high ranking it really deserves, but this is a gem. For those that appreciate Stone, despite its wide distribution, this is a damn great beer.

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Photo of ThickNStout
4.53/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500mL bottle from Total Wine (Kennesaw, GA). 16.99. Bottled 10/13. Served in a Terrapin snifter.

Pours a murky, opaque, ruddy brown with a half finger pale head which quickly settles to a lingering haze and leaves smalls spots of lace.

Beautifully sweet nose with vanilla, butterscotch, caramel and bourbon. I get no hint of Double Bastard other than a whisper of bready malt and earthy hops. An incredible smelling brew that I keep going back to enjoy.

The aromas weren't lying. Layers of smooth sweet bourbon-tinged vanilla, butterscotch, caramel, plum, bread, a hint of smoke, some faint leafy hops and a mellow bite of alcohol. Absolutely delicious.

Oily, slick medium full feel with soft carbonation. The aftertaste is full of butterscotch and vanilla but it's also where I detect the strongest remnants of what this beer used to be with a mild piney bitterness and caramel malts.

This is perhaps the biggest impact I've ever tasted of barrel aging to a beer. In all the right ways the Double Bastard has become something altogether different. Nothing like the brutal hop monster it began life as but utterly fantastic. I really hope that I can drink more of this someday.

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Photo of TwelveOunces
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500Ml poured into a snifter
Batch #7, Bottled Oct 2013

A- Pours incredibly murky brown. Reddish hues but a muddy beer. A large tho finger of a tan head.

S- Big bourbon. A hint of an aged hop flavor. Sweet caramel malts. Sugary, creamy and thick.

T- A big bitterness at first which is unusual from a bourbon beer but not a bastard beer. A big malt profile to this beer. A slight raisin. A dried wheat flavor. The hop flavor has mostly faded. There is a hint of citrus and resinous grapefruit. The bourbon is where this beer shines. There is a nice sour mash flavor. A lingering burnt wood and oak aftertaste.

M- A massive beer. A moderate alcohol taste for a large alcohol/warming feel. A very sticky aftertaste and a palate ruining beer. The opposite of watery.

O- A solid bourbon barrel beer from the very solid base beer. Hope this series continues on and I would love to see IRS get the Charred treatment

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Photo of bluejacket74
4.46/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500 ml caged and corked bottle, bottled October 2013. Served in a Great Lakes Brewing chalice, the beer pours a murky hazelnut brown color with about an inch tan head that stuck around for a little while. There's also a decent amount of lacing. Aroma is sweet and malty, the brew smells like toffee, caramel, bourbon, vanilla, dark fruit (raisins), and wood. Taste is similar to the aroma, but with the addition of some plums, dark bread, candied oranges and a little bit of peppery spice. Mouthfeel/body is full, it's syrupy and creamy with moderate carbonation. I thought this was a pretty good brew. It's pricey at $19.99 a bottle, but definitely worth trying. I'd consider buying another bottle if I found some again.

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Photo of dfillius
4.45/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed on 1/5/2014
A: Cloudy, nearly opaque reddish liquid. Tannish head
S: Vanilla and bourbon
T: Sweet, vanilla. Finish is dry and oaky. A bit of heat. Some hops.
M: Smooth. A tad astringent, but not unpleasant.
O: Very pleasant.

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Photo of scottfrie
4.43/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle into snifter. Bottled October 2013.

A: Pours a deep, murky, maroon with a finger of thick tan colored head that slowly faded into a greasy film and thick collar. Sheets of wispy, bubbly, lace were left down the glass.
S: Rich notes of boot leather, vanilla custard, earthy hop resin, smooth bourbon, camp fire toasted/singed marshmallow, leaf tobacco, dark roasted malt and a hint of medium chocolate. Smells as I would imagine this beer would smell given what it is and how it was made.
T: Follows the nose with rich flavors of leather, milk chocolate, vanilla, and slight char. I also get sweet and stick flavors of caramel, brown sugar, candied sugar, and maybe toffee. The finish is full of very mellow and smooth bourbon, oak, and bitter, leafy, hops. The aftertaste is rich, sweet, and lingering with flavors of booze, chocolate, and hop resin.
M: Full body, greasy, oily, thick and smooth mouthfeel that has a solid bitterness and a very mild alcohol presence. The carbonation is medium-low with a good chew without being distracting.
O: A very flavorful and decadent beer. The age and the barrel really add another layer of complexity and smoothness to the base beer. I wish I had purchased more bottles.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4.42/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottle: Poured a murky dirty brown color ale with a medium size foamy head with good retention and some light lacing. Aroma of wood and rye whiskey is pretty dominant with some light hoppy relics notes. Taste is also dominated by rye whiskey notes with quite a bit of woody notes with some residuals sugar notes and light fading hoppy notes. Body is full with good carbonation with some well-balanced warming notes. One of the best nightcap beers I’ve tasted in the recent months.

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Photo of arizcards
4.42/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a 500 ml bottle in late November from Total Wine for $16.99. Bottled in October 2013. This was an oh by the way brew as i was picking up my Firestone Walker Anniversary brew. Looking back November was probably the best release month i have experienced. FW Anniversary, Abyss, the Bourbon County series, Ivan the Terrible, and Charred led to a huge beer bill but well worth it!

Beer poured brown with a nice off white head upon the initial pour.

Nose is huge with the barrel characteristics of oak, vanilla, light smoke, and a generous snootful of bourbon.

Taste matches the nose and then some. I was greeted by a huge warming bourbon presence. In addition to the oak, vanilla, booze, and smoke i am picking up on dark fruit and dark cocoa. The hop fade from the original beer is pretty significant but there is enough to make this well balanced.

Overall this in a very intimidating brew at first but one that evolves as one sips from the snifter. The complexity is right up there with the BB brews that are heavily barreled. Check it out if you see it on the shelf and you like heavy barrel aging!

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Photo of drdiesel9483
4.41/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look - big head that last with a dirty brown color. Only thing it's lacking is lacing.
Taste - strong alcohol bourbon smell with sweet molaces.
Taste - strong alcohol taste with charred sweet bourbon taste and sweet molaces just like the smell.
Feel - fairly smooth had first but you can really feel it afterwards for a long while. Great medium body and pretty creamy.
Overall - strong strong beer but completely expected. I really like the bourbon taste.

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Photo of anteater
4.4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 500ml bottle

A: Awesome C&C bottle. Pours a light brown with a medium light tan head.

S: Pretty sweet with bourbon and vanilla.

T: Definitely a big sweetness in this one as the nose indicates but balanced out evenly by a really nice bitterness. Major oak, vanilla, bourbon and toasted marshmellow. Booze is prevalent but in a very good way.

M: Thick and smooth.

O: Top notch. Excellent representation of one of my favorite styles of beer.

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Photo of hckyfn9999
4.4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a murky orangish brown color with about a finger of cream-colored head that disappears pretty quickly. Bourbon is definitely noticeable in the aroma with oak and vanilla present.

Nice levels of bourbon present here, not over powering but its there with charred oak there along with vanilla and a little dark chocolate. To go with the bourbon is plenty of citrusy hops. Also the booze is pretty well hidden for 12.6% beer. I really enjoyed it, maybe not worth twenty bucks for the bomber, but damn good.

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Photo of Kurmaraja
4.39/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2013 vintage. Surprising combination of aroma and flavors to me. Aroma gave me a lot of fruit - peach / apricot along with some almond / marzipan / vanilla. Flavor moves quickly through that into toffee, cotton candy, carmel terrain. Finishes with oak, bourbon, vanilla, kissed with smoke, touch of meaty tobacco. The smoke is beautifully subtle, fleeting, accumulates across the glass.

I actually found this more elegant and less bruising than expected. Stone can still surprise.

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Photo of chanokokoro
4.39/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 500ml formerly corked and caged bottle into a branded Stone Brewing Company pairing glass (short stemmed goblet).

Pours a murky amber capped by a one and half finger fluffy beige head. Amazing head for a barrel-aged brew; excellent retention and tons of sticky lacing. Huge complex nose, charred oak, deep toffee notes, accents of butterscotch, and very mild bourbon notes in the background. Opens with bold, smoky caramel and hints of vanilla. Charred oak joins in, molasses, toffee, piney, spruce-like hops in the background. Finishes with understated accents of bourbon booziness, but much more prevalent smoked wood. Fairly smooth full body, pleasant velvety creaminess. Wonderful mouthfeel. Really impressed with this brew. Definitely exceeded my expectations. I wish I had a nice smoked cheddar on hand; without a doubt it would be the perfect pairing.

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Photo of richj1970
4.34/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 500 ml bottle into double bastard glass.

A: Pours a cloudy mud colored brown with a small one finger tan head. Reminds me a bit of unfiltered apple cider in appearance.

S: Oak, bourbon, vanilla, and raisins.

T: Fairly significant oak flavors coming through. Sweet malts mixed with a nice hop punch. Dark fruits and some nice bourbon influence. The bourbon being much more apparent as it warms.

M: Full bodied with a bit of syrupy quality to it.

O: A very nice variation on the base beer which was already a favorite of mine.

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Photo of Ri0
4.32/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

poured 500ml bottle into chalice. Bottled Oct, 2013.

A - A murky brown color with a thin head. Fades quickly and leaves the slightest ring with some spotty lacing. Not the most attractive beer, but that is not what it is about.

S - Sweet brown sugar, molasses, burnt caramel, and some dark fruit. The bourbon, vanilla, and oak all stand out and there is some butterscotch. I don't find any of the hops in the nose.

T - Starts off sweet with brown sugar, molasses, and some dark fruit. The vanilla and butterscotch stand out more and there are notes of bourbon and oak. The hops are muted from the Double Bastard base with some noticeable alcohol. Has some Old ale and Scotch ale qualities.

M - Medium body with nominal carbonation. Somewhat of a syrup feel, but smooth with a warming finish.

O - This was really nice and shows you just how versatile Double Bastard can be. It had some qualities that reminded me of a old ale or barrel aged scotch ale.

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Photo of BMMillsy
4.32/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Bottle from the Stone Bistro in San Diego. Pours a murky brownish amber with a ring of yellowish brown head. Aroma is some dark fruits, vanilla, bourbon, anise, caramel, toffee, maybe even a little chocolate. Big time caramel on the nose as this warms. Smells very nice. Flavor follows with sweet caramel, fig, vanilla, smoke, peat, perhaps some chocolate. Very nice layer of flavors. Sweet but not cloying. Bourbon is there and had a slight burn, but it isn't overly hot, albeit a strong whiskey presence. Medium carbonation, thick heavy mouthfeel. Overall a very nice barrel aged brew that I would put in the BA Barleywine category. Still a bit of hop presence from the Double Bastard, and I expect this would age nicely and turn a little thicker and sweeter.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.3/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Ok, I see ya Stone. I see your brashness, I see your aggression, I see your abrasion. But now you've chosen a term that resonates greatly with the South, with the Bourbon constituents, with a mindset of succulence, richness and refinement. Stone, your tipping your toe in... Let's see what you got...

Southern Charred opens with lackluster charm. Murky as a muddle rain puddle, its brown, gold and amber is nothing appealing... until it releases a sandy-bright blanket of foam. Like meringue, it concretes its top with a long lasting cap and with broken lace as the beer slowly recedes.

But on sniff and it's all over... the aromas meld into the soul with absolute succulent power. Everything from sweet maple, to boubon-soaked oak, to butterscotch, to cherry wood, to vanilla and cream- everything that's imagined about butter pecan manifests themselves into this ale form.

And that's how the taste opens. Its sultry, savory and succulent tone seduces the taste buds with absolute ease as the sugars, buttery richness and creamy sweetness massages away any worry. But as the beer traverses over the middle, it pulls in other complexities: first an oaken wave of charred oak; then high bitter stemmy bitterness; and later bourbon-soaked fruit. Finishing with de-e-e-eply resinous bittering and playful acidity- the ale is dry tasting with hops, whisky and wood spice.

Its full body is largely due to its high residual sweetness that saturates and caresses the palate in seductive fashion. As their grip slowly releases, an abrassive grate comes and scrubs the palate far sooner than what is preferred. Its late charge of bitterness and malty-dryness extends well into the next savory sip.

Like the love-hate relationship you have with an ex-girlfriend. She's sweet and irresistible early but bitter and gnarly late. But once you're over her- you go back in for another taste. She's the blessing and the curse all in one.

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Southern Charred (2013) from Stone Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 47 ratings.