Mourning Wood - Local Option

Not Rated.
Mourning WoodMourning Wood

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BA SCORE
86
very good

443 Ratings
THE BROS
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 443
Reviews: 61
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 9.92%
Wants: 8
Gots: 36 | FT: 6
Brewed by:
Local Option visit their website
Illinois, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  7.30% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: MasterSki on 12-08-2011

Formerly Morning Wood

Mourning Wood is an oak-aged coffee amber ale. Fresh American oak used during the aging process and Dark Matter’s El Salvador San Jose pulp-natural coffee aromatically drive the beer yet they remain subtle components of the beers’ overall flavor profile. This amber colored, medium-bodied, and extraordinarily well-balanced ale has a delicate taste that is appreciated by beer drinkers of all palates.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 443 | Reviews: 61
Reviews by dexterk1:
More User Reviews:
Photo of mynie
4.15/5  rDev +8.4%

No friggin idea what to expect here. A coffee amber? Why not a jalepeno cream stout or an amarillo hopped dubble. Cripes, people, do any of you have any sense of decency anymore?!?

But, hey--I was just trying to come up with weird, gross-sounding style combinations, and it was really hard to do. Why? Because American beer has gotten so weird and open-minded that even a flavor combination that sounds absolutely contradictory could be worth a shot. I mean, they made a beer that was supposed to taste like pizza and it was totally ok. A coffee amber really ain't that weird.

In theory, at least, it ain't that weird. In practice, it tastes like some weird European hard candy. It's not bad, but like I said in my first sentence, I got no idea how to review it.

It's a bunch of very tasty weirdness. Not unlike beer, I guess, but also not very much like beer. Big nodes of mocha and toffee and then some barley in the back end, all mellowed out excellently by oaking.

Photo of barhoc11
3.17/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Hazy amber color with a decent head that fades fast

S: Big Malt smell with subtle coffee notes

T: Interesting stuff going on here, more of a malty amber/red taste with a very small hint of coffee. If I hadn't read the bottle , I would probably not know there was coffee in this. The aftertaste is not very good.

M: It feels medium-bodied and a little smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. This is its best characteristic.

O: I expected more out of this, perhaps I have an old bottle but the oak and coffee tastes are very minimal. The aftertaste ruins this beer for me

Photo of Jackolope
3.99/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Surprisingly thick head and very nice mouthfeel. The flavor wasn't as bold as I would of liked.

Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the 500mL bottle into a Teku.

A vigorous pour produces 3-4 finger thick, creamy, frothy head. A orange amber body shows some lazy carbonation and cloudiness. The head persists well and leaves lots of sticky lace behind.

I smell a chocolate bar with my first whiff of this. The coffee, chocolate and heavy scent of sweet malts create some sort of sweet coffee and chocolate treat. It's a lot like a mocha as well, but the coffee isn't so aggressive.

Continuing what the nose suggested, I continue to get a sweet coffee and chocolate flavor, although this time I'm reminded of a Starbucks Frappuccino. Caramel flavors work their way in and add to the sweet coffee drink taste. Towards the finish, some piney hops add a subtle bite. But wait, as this warms, I feel like I may even be tasting coconut, perhaps the combination of some oak and sweet malts suggesting toasted coconut. Nice.

Morning Wood has a lively feel to the tongue and a bitterness at the finish, but mostly it's creamy and thick with malt.

This beer was unique to me and I like that. I enjoyed the blend of flavors from the malts and the oak barrel that came together to create something akin to a flavored coffee drink. I'd rather drink such a thing in beer form rather than in a coffee shop.

Photo of Sammy
2.9/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Tastes like, well...wood. the bark of a tree, coffee grounds, some hops. This one was a homebrewing experiment that would not be served. Brown coloured body, a little coffee been aroma. Not too drinkable. I am told it is popular, but that is likely better with food and to people liking say instant coffee.

Photo of PBRmeasap1980
4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle into pint glass

A- First pour looks nicely filtered and light brown like iced tea. Second pour is still like tea, but full of sediment. Both times the head rears up like and angry bear, but very guickly disappears (too much carb?)
S- Sweet malts, oak, and slight coffee with a bit of tartness. I was hoping for more coffee
T - Starts off like it could almost go sour (probably from the oak), but then you realize it is very sweet and finishes with coffee. The more I drink of this, the more I am enjoying the flavors.
M - Smooth, not too carbinated as I feared from the head. Easy drinking.
O- A solid beer from Local Option. Red ale with coffee, so don't expect a big body or over the top tastes. Well balanced malts, oak, and coffee.

Photo of WoodBrew
4.27/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The Morning Wood would definitely be worth a morning wood...it was quite taste. The beer poured a hazy orangish amber with creamy head that left a nice lacing. The scent was coffee mixed with biscuit. The taste was a nice amber base with espresso boost. The mouthfeel was medium to full in body with smooth carbonation. Overall this was a great beer...not sure as to what is going on... the Local Option is Chicago....but the brewer was Pub Dog from Maryland. Nice job who ever!

Photo of russpowell
3.7/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

My bottle says it's brewed by Pub Dog Brewing CO From Westminster MD & it's 7.3%...

Pours an effervescent amber/orange with 2+ fingers of tan head. Good lacing & above average head retention

S: Big time coffee & hazelnut, almost wonder if that's the "natural flavors" on display? Seems a touch artificial

T: Follows the nose, a little dryness as well, some tannic notes as well up front. More coffee & a bit of woodiness/dryness & hazelnut creamer. Finishes, with roasty coffee, sweetness, & oaky notes

MF: Medium body, fairly firm carbonation

Interesting taste, but not very sessionable. Would work as a breakfast beer if nothing better was around. Give me a coffee stout any time

Photo of thagr81us
4.29/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Served from tap into a Trappe Door tulip. Poured copper with a two finger off-white head that subsided to a half finger slowly. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, coffee, toffee, caramel, earth, and bread. The flavor was of sweet malt, bread, coffee, toffee, caramel, and cream. It had a light feel on the palate with medium carbonation. Overall this was a pretty good brew. I have to be honest that I picked this one up just for the name. However, upon first investigation of the nose I was taken back a good bit due to all of the complexity going on. The flavor was more of the same as the coffee and toffee notes were very well incorporated and done quite well into the beer. This made it quite intriguing and enjoyable during each sip of the glass. This was an excellent representative of the style and I would love to have this one again. I mean, I did have two glasses of it that evening which is quite unusual for me.

Photo of Gmann
4.2/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy amber brown color with a short dense cream colored head that settles into a light cap.

The aroma is a beautiful coffee scent. Deep and rich, almost smells as if there is chocolate in the beer. Woody notes blend perfectly with the coffee that gives the beer an earthy characteristic. Doesn't really smell oaky but more of a seasoned wood ready for the fire. Excellent.

The taste mirrors the aroma. Big coffee flavors; again almost chocolatey. Plenty of wood presence. Smooth caramel sweetness. A bit of a tea like note that reminds you that the base beer is an amber ale. I would expect these coffee notes from a stout, not an amber, but I am pleasantly surprised. Very good.

Moderate feel with fizzy carbonation. Mainly sweet on the palate but does have a light tartness to it.

A very good amber ale; strong coffee flavor. Artwork on the label is cool as well.

Photo of morimech
3.66/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Murky amber color with a dense finger of head that slowly settles to a thin cap. A little bit of lacing is left down the glass.

Nice coffee aroma. A little bit of caramel and vanilla as well. Smells like something that gets ordered at a coffee shop.

Sweet caramel flavor that compliments the coffee. Hints of toffee and vanilla. Quite sweet with little bitterness.

Medium body and nicely carbonated.

Very sweet beer that does not really fit with my palate. Good coffee flavor.

Photo of richj1970
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 500 ml bottle into snifter.

A: Pours a golden honey brown with three finger beige colored head that lasted a good while. Very little lacing.

S: Sweet malts and roasted coffee beans. Biscuits drizzled with honey.

T: Caramel, and coffee with cream and sugar. A faint hint of oak lingers in the background.

M: Medium body with a creamy texture and leaving a bit of sweetness in the tongue.

O: This is really well done. Just enough coffee, just enough sweetness. Very crushable. Wish I had bought more bottles.

Photo of EagleTalon
4.06/5  rDev +6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours to a beautiful buff head that produces tons of lace. Color is a hazy light orange amber. Aroma is roasty malt, coffee, oak and caramel malt. Flavor is coffee, sweet malt and an astringent bitterness. Mouthfeel is meduim and CO2 is spot-on. Overall, a great flavored beer experience.

Photo of KYGunner
4.19/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Gorgeously colored in a rusty amber with a touch of cloudiness. The head was built on layers of loosely knit bubbles but had a cohesive core.

The scent is of roasted coffee and cream, with a little chocolate and some caramel malty notes.

The flavor is rather robust with a strong coffee stance but a smooth roasted char. The taste continues chocolatey, not a milk chocolate but more of chocolate flavored coffee. There's also some roasted malt qualities that make this a really tasty ale.

The feel is full, creamy, moderately carbonated and easy on the throat.

Photo of Bung
3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml. A not real dark orangy-amber pour, nice frothy layer of cream head.

Aroma, Toasted malt, some light chocolate and caramel. This is all background for the coffee.

Taste, Quite caramelly, caramel coffee. Some earthy cocoa and oak. Maybe some herbal hop like presence. Pretty nice, is as described.

About medium bodied. The fine carbonation almost is creamy, but not quite. Abv very well hidden. Not exactly an amber or red, a very good non-dark coffee brew though no doubt.

Photo of gillagorilla
3.79/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Max's (from notes).

A: Hazy amber brown.

S: Coffee and caramel.

T: Little coffee and sweet. Decent. Not too much of the oak, it must have just tempered the coffee.

M: Crisp.

O: Pretty good. Interesting. Good for what it is and a lot of nice flavors in there.

Photo of emerge077
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Draft at Local Option, served in a goblet. Review from written notes.

Saturated auburn orange color, good clarity, thin ring of off white foam around the edges of the glass.

Pleasant roasted coffee aroma, light toasted grains, maple.

Similar flavors, dominant coffee flavors with a little bit of toasted malt and maple in the middle. Lightly bitter astringency from the coffee or possibly oak, though oak isn't really expressed in the taste much. Smooth feel, medium bodied and easy drinking. Would drink this again for sure.

Photo of deford
3.25/5  rDev -15.1%

Very nice to have an oak aged ale without the smoke. Very easy drinking and enjoyable. The coffee definitely comes through on the nose and in the mouth...paired it with a warm cinnamon roll...perfect! Don't expect anything crazy....just a nice, easy drinking amber ale with a little coffee on the finish.

Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.31/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at The Old Toad in Rochester, NY. Oak-aged coffee amber ale? What a weird combination of ideas. Let's see if it works.

Pours a dark amber with a one inch head with a small amount of lacing down the glass.

Smells include oak, earthy coffee, and hazelnuts.

The taste is pretty similar. Lots of earthy coffee flavor here- the coffee flavor shines through more strongly than a porter or stout- because the roast of the a porter or stout sometimes blinds the pure coffee flavors. The coffee here provides earthy sweet flavors, along with some nutty flavors that remind of hazelnuts or pecans. The beer is also incredibly woody and oaky, like drinking liquid wood at times. It is a good flavor- but becomes slightly overbearing at times. Some vanilla and caramel as well.

Medium bodied, creamy mouthfeel, low carbonation.

One of the more interesting beer experiments had. Maybe use less strong oak or age it on the oak for less time, and the beer would be near perfect. As of now, the oak flavors are too strong.

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

A: medium/deep amber body; somewhat slow pour into a pint produced a slim finger of tan head

S: two-headed monster of dry coffee and hearty barley malt; subtler aromas of wood, earth, and savory herb

T: the malts and coffee flavors were the most up-front; oaky wood notes accompanied chewier tastes reminiscent of salted caramel, dried herbs, and husky grains

M: medium body, modest carbonation, a little bit of a chalky coffee aftertaste

O: I believe I may be partial to coffee flavors in stouts as opposed pales and ambers - this was an interesting beer, with clear coffee, malt, and oak notes - so the product is certainly as advertised, but I found it to have an almost muddied overall presentation

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.06/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Reuben's Brew snifter. Pours an attractive medium red orange with a fine one finger light tan head with great retention and lots of lacing. Aroma of fresh coffee, caramel malt and nuts, hint of chocolate. Flavor is sweet caramel malt, good coffee, nuts, vanilla, pleasant. Medium bodied with some creaminess. A somewhat complex and interesting coffee ale that is nicely balanced between the malt body and the coffee and nutty flavors. This is what I'd expect from a coffee infused nut brown ale. A bit on the sweet side, but enough flavor to carry it off. Coffee is nicely done. I really liked this. I usually only enjoy coffee in dark malt beers like stouts, but this really is well done and enjoyable.

Photo of buschbeer
3.77/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle
Served in a tulip glass

A - It is a murky tea color with amber highlights. It is topped with a mountain of tan head.

S - I get some faint coffee and toffee.

T - The taste is full of bitter coffee.

M - Medium

O - It was good for an amber ale. The bitterness was almost over the top for me.

Photo of metter98
3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: The beer is hazy yellowish amber in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high beige head that gradually died down but consistently left a thin head covering the surface, a collar around the edge, and some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of nutty malts and coffee are present in the nose. Hints of vanilla become apparent in the smell once the beer warms up.
T: The taste generally follows the smell and has flavors of coffee intermixed with nutty malts while hints of oak become noticeable towards the finish, the latter of which also become stronger as the beer warms up.
M: It feels medium-bodied and a little smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer has a really nice balance between the coffee, malt, and oak flavors—it's a great option if you are looking for a coffee beer but don't want something as heavy as a coffee-infused stout.

Photo of mfnmbvp
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle, with no apparent bottled on date present. My second encounter with a beer from Local Option, "Brewed & bottled by Pub Dog Brewing Company, Westminster, MD". My bottle lists a 7.30% abv, rather than the 7.00% listed on BeerAdvocate. No idea what to expect with this one.

Poured into an over-sized wine glass.

A - Pours a nice burnt amber / ruby colored body with some dark powdery sediment floating around. Two to three fingers of soft foamy khaki head, slowly fizzing out of existence. Some spotty lacing, but none sticks. Looks pretty nice.

S - Nose is very nice and interesting. While coffee isn't the first thing I smell, it is definitely in there. Chocolate, roasted hazelnuts, some cream, alcohol presence, hint of yeast, and some coarse carbonation.

T - Taste follows the nose very well, I am actually really enjoying this. Bitter coffee bean roast, chocolate / amber malt, roasted hazelnuts, some earthy woodiness from the barrel character, hint of yeast presence. Very nicely layered and balanced.

M - Feel finishes of lightly bitter roast and some dryness.

Overall, I was apprehensive about this one at first, but they pulled it off nicely. Very nice depth and duration of flavor, moderate abv, and a decent price at $5.99. I look forward to trying more from these guys.

Local Option Morning Wood ---4/5.

Photo of StoutHunter
3.13/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

My friend brought over a bottle of Local Option's Morning Wood to share with me so I took some notes on it. I've been wanting to check out some beers from this brewery but I haven't seen them around and I'm happy to have a chance to try it, so lets see how it goes. No visible bottling date. Poured from a brown 500ml bottle into a snifter.

A- The label looks pretty nice, it reminds me of a heavy metal album cover and I think it's pretty eye catching. It poured a fairly cloudy lighter brown color that took on a slight copper and ruby color when held to the light with a finger and a half worth of fluffy tan head that died down to a thin ring that eventually faded away and it left a little bit of spotty lacing behind. This was a pretty nice looking beer, I have no complaints.

S- The aroma starts off with a slightly higher amount of medium sweetness followed by the coffee being the first to show up and it imparts a pretty typical coffee flavor with some grainy and caramel malt like aromas showing up in the background. Up next comes the barrel which imparts a noticeable vanilla aroma and very noticeable oaky and wooden aroma but not any boozy or bourbon like aromas and there's also an odd aroma that I can't put my finger on it and I think it may be from the barrel but I don't know for sure. The aroma was decent, but I wish the barrel imparted more of bourbon aroma, and I wasn't a big fan of that odd mystery aroma.

T- The taste seems to be fairly similar to the aroma and it starts off with a medium amount of sweetness followed by the coffee still being the first to show up and it imparts that same typical coffee flavor but it's a little lighter and slightly stale tasting with some caramel malts, grainy, and light sweet malt flavors. Up next comes the barrel which imparts the exact same aspects that it did in the aroma weird mystery aspect and all. On the finish there's a weird herbal flavor with a slightly higher amount of medium bitterness with a watery, stale coffee, and caramel malt like aftertaste. The taste was ok, but the flavors didn't seem to blend together as well as they could have.

M- A little smooth, not so clean, a little creamy, not too crisp, on the thicker side of being medium bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. The mouthfeel was decent and it worked ok with this beer.

Overall I thought this beer was just ok and I thought it wasn't too Red Ale like after all the different things they did to this beer, I'm not sure that I could pick it out as a Red Ale, but it wasn't a bad example of a experimental beer and it wasn't a good example either. This beer didn't have the best drinkability, it was a little smooth, not so clean, a little creamy, a little filling and the taste didn't do the best job at holding my attention, half the bottle is enough for me, I had no urge to drink any more than that. What I liked the most about this beer was the appearance, it was a fairly nice looking Red Ale. What I liked the least about this beer was the taste, the flavors just didn't seem to blend together that well. I wouldn't buy this beer and I'm glad I got to try this before because I'm pretty sure I would have spent $10 on this beer and I don't think it's close to being worth that and I wouldn't recommend it. All in all I was a little let down with this beer, on paper it sounded good, but it really didn't come together as well as I had hoped. This didn't make for the best first impression for Local Option, but I still want to try more of their beers. After we drank this beer I grabbed a bottle of Oddside's Morning Wood from my cellar and I know that the only similarity is their name and that they are coffee beers aged in bourbon barrels, but the Oddsides beer blew this one out of the water everyone we shared it with flat out agreed that Oddsides made a better Morning Wood. I appreciate the effort, but this one could use some work especially when we already have a very nice coffee beer aged in Bourbon Barrels called Morning Wood that is brewed here.

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Mourning Wood from Local Option
86 out of 100 based on 443 ratings.