Black Xantus - Humboldt Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 885 | Reviews: 354 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by nhindian:
3.63/5 rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
22oz bottle poured into a Mikkeller wine glass. Bottle generously provided as an extra by Destral, thanks!
A - Pours a dark mahogany with tints of ebony in the thicker parts of the glass. It slowly but surely grows a 1.5-fingered head with decent retention for being a barrel-aged 11% beer. The lacing is a unique shimmering cascade of foam that crests and breaks like an wave on the beach.
S - Right away, the nose is bringing a sweet dose of bourbon and oak, mixed with vanilla. I'm also getting a good amount of rich chocolate. Although it says that it's brewed with coffee, I can't say I'm getting a strong amount of it besides a slight roast. The finish does have a discernible alcohol note that is a little off-putting.
T - While the aroma is quite enjoyable, I feel the taste is a step back. I am still getting the great bourbon note, which in the taste really accentuates the wood and especially the vanilla, but the alcohol heat comes through rather early and makes the whole thing a bit hot. There are some positive characteristics, however, in the almost decadent chocolate note in here that puts it on par with the amount found in excellent barrel-aged beers such as Goose Island's Bourbon County and 50/50's Eclipse series. Unfortunately, those beers are much more smooth and easy-drinking than this one, which is a shame given the retail price of this beer. Again, I'm not getting much coffee or espresso here, just a slight acrid bitterness.
M - Mouthfeel is medium-bodied with good carbonation. Not as thick as I was expecting, but given the flavors I feel that this "lighter" feel gives it an advantage. While the flavors are a bit hot, the feel at least is smooth and rich. Long-lasting aftertaste of alcohol, chocolate, and bourbon.
D/O - Drinkability is moderate. Honestly, the thing that wow'ed me about this beer was the chocolate, and coming in I thought the differentiator would be the coffee. Alas, this beer came up short on the coffee. I thought the nose and flavors were pretty good, but the harshness of the alcohol really hurt the overall flavor. I saw this in Richmond for around $13, and after having it, I don't think I'd spring for it for that much.
Serving type: bottle
11-16-2011 03:25:36 | More by nhindian
More User Reviews:
4.23/5 rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
22 oz. bottle, with no apparent bottled on date or vintage date present. Nothing further about the beer printed on the label either. Somehow this is my first review of a beer from Nectar Ales, or Humboldt Brewing Co., as BeerAdvocate lists it. Acquired this bottle at the local beer store for $14.99. Expectations are excellent based on this beer's high ratings.
Poured into a Duvel tulip glass.
A - Pours a thick murky mahogany; opaque black in the glass with just over a finger of thick sudsy mocha head with some decent staying power considering the hefty 11.00% abv. Some sticky spotty lacing clings to the glass on it's way down. Looks very nice.
S - The aroma definitely has a lot going on - you can smell the combination of bourbon & wine barrels working together. Vanilla, caramel, toffee & some fruity berry / vinous dark fruit presence in the vain of raspberry / cherry / plum. Cold coffee is in the aroma also, but it is a minor player.
T - The taste is much more bitter / roasty coffee-forward than one would expect from the aroma. Caramel, vanilla, toffee, herbal tea leaves, oak wood. Dark fruits are more in the background - raspberry, cherry, dates, raisins.
M - The feel is smooth, lightly thick / syrupy, and creamy. Goes down smooth with mild warmth on the finish. Lightly bitter, sticky, and roasty on the finish also. Semi-bitter for 50 IBU.
Overall, an excellent barrel aged stout from these guys, but I wish the label would delve further into specifics about the beer. Obviously, not the most complex of all barrel aged stouts, but it is very nicely crafted and well worth picking up.
Nectar Ales Black Xantus ---4/5.
Serving type: bottle
07-07-2014 03:37:39 | More by mfnmbvp
Black Xantus from Humboldt Brewing Co.
93 out of 100 based on 885 ratings.