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Ichor - Sly Fox Brewing Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

86 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 86
Hads: 169
Avg: 3.9
pDev: 13.08%
Wants: 15
Gots: 22 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Sly Fox Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Quadrupel (Quad) |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: NeroFiddled on 02-18-2003

This Abbey-style Quadruple brewed with German Pils and Roast malts and dark candi sugar, hopped with German Tradition hops. Luscious and seductive, Ichor is brewed for both the body and the soul. This beer will improve with careful aging but is ready to drink now.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 86 | Hads: 169
Photo of barleywinefiend
3.06/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a dark ruby red color, really no carbonation and no pop on the cork either. That left a few bubbles. Nose is malty, slight sweetness, raisins, figs, plums, and caramel. Taste is sweet but flat with dark fruits and caramel. The alcohol is hidden pretty well. Mouthfeel was pretty flat. I drain poured it, mainly upon the carbonation and lack there of left unintrigued.

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Photo of akorsak
4.22/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A snifter-sized glass poured at Iron Hill West Chester's Belgium Comes to West Chester.

A: The ale is a muddy creek brown color, brownish with a lot of haze. As I drank the ale, the haze became more concentrated in the bottom of the snifter.

S: The aroma is malty sweetness with a fruity aroma that highlights darker fruits.

T: The flavor is full-bodied malts, thick and chewy and not shy on the alcohol. As the ale sits on the tongue, some prunes and raisins stick out, providing a nice malty fruit base. Some bittering hops shine on top of the malts, but the malts are the star here. The flavors finish long and climax in a nice yeasty thickness.

M: The alefruits are delicious, providing a darker depth to the strong malts.

D: I wrote this beer off after an earlier tasting but clearly that was premature. This is a strong quad, full of malty strength and a very nice product. Thank God for second chances!

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Photo of corby112
3.61/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml, shared by kubrick215. Thanks Josh!

Pours a cloudy dark brown color with dark plum hues when held to a light and a frothy two finger beige head that has excellent retention, slowly fading into a lasting cap. Chunks of soapy lacing left behind.

Sweet vinous aroma with lots of dark fruit notes and subtle roasted malt. Hints of toast, caramel, plum, raisin, dark cherry and grape. Subtle spicy pepper.

Fuller bodied than expected with some bready yeast, zesty spice and sweet dark fruit. Very sweet with faint licorice and booze. Hints of pepper, plum, raisin, fig, grapes and dark cherry. A bit too sweet but the ABV is excellently masked. Absolutely no heat making this beer pretty drinkable. Good but a bit one dimensional.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.87/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Abbey style quad.

A: Pours a dark ruby red color with a slight off white fizzy head that soon dispersed.

S: The nose was fruity with fresh cherries and faint smoky woody tones along with dried fruit and alcohol.

T: The initial flavor was fruity and sweet with fresh cherries, caramel and dried fruit (raisins, prunes). There was a nice Belgian yeastiness as well. Finishes sweet, malty with some candi-sugar sweetness.

M: very smooth and soft carbonation provides a wine like texture and palate on the tongue. A fruity cherry finish with some alcohol warming.

D: Good drinkability and worth checking out but falls short when compared to Belgian quads.

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Photo of ppoitras
3.65/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle obtained via trade with hopdog. Thanks for the opportunity... Corked and caged.

Poured into a Rapscallion glass, formed a 3/8" creamy beige head over the clear dark burgundy brew. Head almost immediately recedes to just bubbling around the rim, with ample lacing. Aroma is malt syrup with dark fruits and spicing. Taste is spicy dark malt sweetness, with dark fruit notes, closing warm and with a bit of cough syrup lingering. Mouthfeel is okay, a bit too chewy for me though, and drinkability is quashed a tad by same. A little too hot for me to enjoy as much as I would have liked.

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Photo of DrJay
4.32/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark, deep ruby/chestnut beer with a thin, light tan head that settled quickly to a ring. Minimal spotty lacing. Big fruity aroma of prunes, figs, and raisins, along with rich, dark malt (light roast with bittersweet chocolate). Yeast contribute some character as well, mostly a freshly baked bread smell. Alcohol is present in the nose, but is restrained and blends in well. While the fruit character from the aroma is in full force in the flavour, the malt character is somewhat expanded - it's more nutty and has a bit of toffee blended in. Sweet, caramelized sugar is solid throughout and is accompanied by mellow alcohol flavour and warmth. Low carbonation, full bodied, with a bit of stickiness. A bold beer with a nice balance and accessible complexity. I like this one quite a bit and plan to bring some back to Toronto to pass around.

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Photo of DrDemento456
4.02/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked up an old bottle of this for 6 bucks at the local House of 1,000 beers.

A - Head is nice on this one yet just a 1/4 inch which is not very sticky. Color is a deep chestnut brown almost to the point of pitch black but clear at the base.

S - Getting some great sugar plums and cherries in the smell. By far the sweetest smelling quad I ever got.

T - Well the cherries kind of come off artificial and with the alcohol remind me somewhat of cough syrup. Still it's easy to drink with some average dark fruits and candied sugar tastes.

M - Really fizzy much lighter than I expected for the style. Makes for an easy drinking beer it just feels weird for a quad.

Overall worth the 6 bucks I paid but not worth a revisit at around 9-10 bucks. I would rather pick up a St Bernard for the same price. Also the fake cherry taste is kind of off putting.

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Photo of ccrida
2.97/5  rDev -23.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Really had the wrangle the cork out of this 750ml bottle, with my teeth ultimately, only to have a headless pour with a wisp of light tan skim and no lace over a cola colored body. In it's defense, it's quickly roused with a swirl of the St. Feuillien goblet, but it recedes just as quickly. An overly vigorous 2nd pour roused a 1/4 inch head that that immediately vanished to a collar and swirled skim...

The smell is all dark stone fruit sweetness and a touch of spicy yeast. While it had it moments, it has an astringency to it that was unwelcome.

The taste is dominated by dark candi sugar. Theres a very rummy booze that works well, but is inadequately tempered by any yeasty complexity, save for a slight spiciness on the finish. Boarding on sugar bomb, this one's a diabetic's nightmare!

The mouthfeel is very light, easily passing the Belgian digestibility test, but seriously lacking in carbonation.

The drinkablity was low, because this one was so sugary and not very interesting. The light body made it a good candidate for a quick buzz if you had a serious sweet tooth for, which I sometimes do, but this was really too much. I brought this back from my last visit to Pittsburgh, and had been looking forward too it. While not a total disappointment, it's not a quad I'll be making any effort to have again.

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Photo of Jwale73
3.95/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

750ml corked and caged bottle secured at the brewpub in June. Served in a tulip. Pours a brownish-aurburn hue with a fluffy, two-inch off-white head that dissipates into a sudsy cluster. Nose expresses vinous notes, an herbal quality, sassafras and black licorice and/or anise. Taste consistent with nose but I definitely get a rootbeer barrel candy character in this brew. Mouthfeel is light-medium in body with an easy carbonation that falls short of lively. Overall, an easy drinking, albeit not very robust, domestic Quad. Not something I would cellar for an extended period, but really quite drinkable and approachable.

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Photo of rfgetz
4.09/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark red tinted brown, cloudy with thick khaki head, good retention, some stickiness to the beer and lacing. Scent brings a potent mix of dark fried fruits - raisins, dates, prunes - and backs it up with candied sugar, brown sugar, light light molasses, faint herbal quality. Taste tones the nose down a bit, still strong in the fruit front, backing off on the sweetness a bit, slightly lacking in the yeast department for the style. Medium bodied, smooth, creamy, touch of earthiness. Not as subtle and complex as world class quads, but still very nice with some bold notes.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.45/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served in a 10 oz chalice glass

Appearance – Pours a deep-deep red nearly brown color. There was a thin white head upon serving which faded to give a moderate level of lacing. While not bad the lacing was less then would be expected for a quad.

Smell – Dark fruits of cherry and plum are mixed in with some more bready aromas. A yeasty and slightly tropical sweet aroma make their presence known but are still quite light in comparison to the dark fruits. At the end of the aroma enters some alcohol smell, while not overpowering it is definitely present.

Taste – The dark fruits in the nose are the first to be tasted. Plums and cherries are most pronounced, but there is also some raisin and apple mixed in as well. These sweeter fruit flavors are next paired with some more yeasty and malty flavors, with a nice does of banana mixed into the taste. There is a good level of alcohol flavor that then comes into play brining the taste to the end. While not huge, the alcohol is a bit on the stronger side. While it is warming, it is just a bit too much at the end.

Mouthfeel – The mouthfeel is rather moderate to slightly above average. While not bad, it is a tad shy of what would be desired for a quadruple. The carbonation is right, but the body is just a bit too thin for the style.

Overall – The beer has some really nice attributes, such as nice strong fruit and malt flavors and aromas, but the weaker body and the stronger alcohol presence keep it from being really good. Not bad, but not really great either.

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Photo of tigg924
4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: 1 inch head, dark leather brown in color, clear, high carbonation

Smell: sour apple rind, cardamom, coriander, and other Belgian spices

Taste: sour apple rind and bread—maybe pumpernickel dominate, with some brown sugar cardamom, coriander, and other Belgian spices

Mouthfeel: high carbonation, medium-light body, sweet with a touch of bitterness at the end

Overall: A very enjoyable quad. I love the combo of sugar and fruit. Sly Fox is really becoming one of my favorite breweries. I will certainly pick this up again.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
4.2/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vintage bottle from 2002.
Pours a deep amber to almost black color with a small white head. In the aroma, reminds me of asiago cheese, hints of caramel and a touch of alcohol. In the taste, plum-ish and really quite like a LaTrappe Quad. A smooth big bodied mouthfeel and a dry, Belgiany sugary palum in the aftertaste. Great representaion of style, very La Trappe like. Sweet and dry in all the right places.

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Photo of jera1350
4.45/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2010 vintage.

Dark mahogany with an ever active head of dense sandy colored foam that just keeps growing.

Massive fruit notes with malty sweetness and bubblegum. Layer after layer of complex fruit scents.

Huge sweetness up front with dark fruits such as plum, raisin, date, red grape and fig. Warm alcohol, woody/oaky spice, toffee, caramelized sugar and toasted walnuts. So very complex and deliciously drinkable at the same time.

The carbonation is big and pretty soft, but a touch fizzy. The body is a touch light for the style and the finish is extremely dry.

Great quad here. This is an awesome american made example of the style. This is up there with the top ones straight out of Belgium for me.

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Photo of Gmann
3.55/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Out of a 750ml corked and cage bottle. Pours a ruby brown color with a smallish head that dissipated into almost nothing-ness. The appearance is getting by on color alone. The aroma is of spicy Belgian yeast, candi sugar, figs and prunes and rubbing alcohol. The taste is overly sweet, high on the candi sugar and sweet grape/prune juice. It does have the nice Belgian yeast flavors as well as some raisins and figs. The feel is moderate with fizzy carbonation and finishes sweet and slick. Definitely an alcohol burn going on. This is a Quad that makes it half way to greatness. It has some nice phenols going on, could use some more of a roasted malt presence which would offset the sweetness. The alcohol needs to settle in a bit, not sure if aging would help. In its current state it is too sweet and boozy.

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Photo of blackie
3.78/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

a: unibroue snifter, the beer pours a thick sheet of cream colored carbonation, great retention and some light lace

s: dark plummy malts, toasted sugar, aged earthy citrus hops, spicy booze, mild yeasty phenols, a decent quad overall with good fruit but a touch dull in character

m: carbonation lively at first, gradually smoothing as it sits, body medium with a nice slickness

t: sweet malt fruits, plum preserves, raisin purée, toasted sugars, papery noble hops, sugary to begin but drying well in the finish, leathery fruit skins, sweet alcohol, spicy yeast influence, maybe some light chocolate

d: a nice quad, alcohol on the strong side but manageable

750 from Wegmans, Williamsport, PA

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Photo of argock
3.55/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 750 ml corked brown bottle into a St. Feuillien goblet. No freshness dae evident. Purchased at Market Street Wineshop (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Chestnut brown, translucent, with a 1/2-finger beige head with below-average retention and a few spots of lace.

S: Dark fruit with a light cinnamon/nutmeg note. Smells a lot like gingerbread cookie which is on target for the style. A little cola-like aroma as well.

T: There is nothing wrong with the flavor -- it has good depth in the malt and yeast components. Raisin, prune, and date flavors bust down the door and leave a trail of light subtle cinnamon and nutmeg with a dash of maple/honey in the aftertaste. The yeast esters contribute some banana bread notes in the finish as well. Bitterness is low with a heavy load of malt flavors coming through.

M: The mouthfeel is a major flaw in this beer -- it is far too light, hitting the middle of medium-bodied at best. The carbonation is too heavy now (past reviews complained that it was flat) which makes it drinkable but not on style.

O: Ichor is a mixed bag -- good flavor and aroma but way off in the mouthfeel category. If you are feeling like a flavorful, high ABV, yet relatively light-bodied beer, this is the one for you. For me, I want more body and heft in a Quad to be honest.

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Photo of Boto
4.25/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750ml bottle: No sound at all as the cork is puled from the bottle. This one pours with absolutely no head whatsoever. This appears to be normal for this one, judging from other ratings. The color is a clear, dark brown. It has maybe a twinge of cherry red in there also. The aroma has a faint sweetness to it. Some raisins, caramel, other dark fruits. It is a bit slick on your tongue. Notes of dark fruits and caramel, as well as hints of breadiness and actually some cherries in the finish. Also a touch of alcohol on the finish. Not bad at all.

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Photo of srandycarter
3.75/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Murky brownish orange, light near white head. Not much lace.

S - I get mostly Belgian yeast and not much more. A little juicy fruit and spice.

T - Lush fruit and malt, not quite quelled by hops.

M - Medium body, good carb, faults to the sweet.

D - Nice beer. High ABV and sweet nature not so sessionable.

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Photo of thecheapies
4.2/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Mahogany red-brown, but dark. Maybe chestnut. Looks rich. Has very little clarity. Mucky. Enough light passes through the narrow end of the goblet to show some sunken specks of yeast cake.

Distinctly emphasized by prune, black cherry, raisin, and browned pear. Clove-like phenols are pertinent. Has a mild kriek-like tartness. I wouldn't call it sour, but it's certainly a positive, thus far. Backing malts have that brown bread unctuousness. Light nuttiness, overpowered by a whole basket of dark fruits. Hints of red apple and grape. Very ripe for a quad. The booze note is actually pretty tame, and I don't know the actual levels yet, as the bottle label doesn't reveal the ABV%.

Pleasing tartness. It's very subtle, but it makes the whole experience refreshing and all the more approachable. Dark fruits stacked on top of one another. Prune, red grape, tart cherry, pomme fruits, raisin, and blackberry (maybe even pomegranate). Clove-y elements that are legit, not just the taste of something medicinal (except that there is something reminiscent of Ricola cough drops). Perhaps, I am getting a hint of eucalyptus. Somewhat vinous (port notes), a descriptor that I could have used for the nose, as well. Big bouts of maltiness and yeast, playing out like a true Belgian strong ale. Fusel alcohol has that floral note. Exceptional sweetness, but not too far gone. Rather addicting in the way that it's so delicious. Fruity, with a tobacco note that builds from the middle on. Finishes sweet and clove-y. Alcohol is so subdued, I can't wait to see where this one is at.

Feels nice and full and soppy (one of my favorite words to use). Carbonation is perfectly mild with that wee-bit crackle and pop in the back folds of the mouth. Still uses the body to drive the feel. Alcohol has a light spicy bite in the finish. So good.

I'm wondering how long this bottle has sat on the shelf. Amazing complexities built up here. On the sweet side, but hardly atrocious; done the right way! It just happens to have some leftover residual sugars. Wicked good. However, I might open an Abt 12 next...

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Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.7/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured into the chalice clear dark brown with zilch for head, nada, none.

The aroma was fruity with a strong dark fruit impression of raisins and prunes. Chocolate also was present with a dark caramel character. No head and a somewhat low carbonation made the aromas more subdued.

The flavor was fruity with a cinnamon spice and a light peppery character. The flavor was somewhat sweet with a dark caramel and chocolate presence and a strong dark fruit character. The dark fruits, mainly prunes with some raisins, well represented.

The finish was lightly sweet but heading toward dry with a lasting dark fruit and dark caramel presence and chocolate fairly long and lingering into the aftertaste. The body was medium full and the carbonation was mostly nonexistent leaving a fairly still beer. The warming after consumption was very, very high and almost burning which made the beer just a bit difficult to consume. This one would be much better if properly carbonated for the style.

750 ml bottle. Thanks BeerBeing!

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Photo of Metalmonk
4.28/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

After a tiring struggle with the cork, which would not budge no matter what force I applied to it, the thing finally gave way with a very wimpy "pop." Not "pop!!!" but "pop." Nice and polite. Kinda worries me.

Looks healthy enough on the pour, with a thick foamy head that snaps and crackles down to half-size slowly, sitting on top of an absolutely gorgeous dark rusty/ruby-shaded brown. The regal reddish hue turns this into quite the beautiful beer.

Aroma is clearly quite Belgian in character, especially in the yeast department, but the malts also give off a vinous quality that reminds of the best Belgian quads. Lots of grape, obviously, but also other mild fruits, mingling with the yeast in a most pleasing way. Not terribly complex, but quite nice all the same.

Here's one where taste and mouthfeel work significantly hand-in-hand. Flavor-wise this is grape-y, with a strong alcohol warmth that nobody could call "well-hidden", but with the velvet-smooth texture, the mildly funky yeast and the sweet dark fruit, it becomes more like a robust red wine or a sherry: a sweet concoction made exclusively for sipping. A beer that takes on new dimensions and certainly defies many people's idea of what beer is and can be. It doesn't hit you over the head, just pushes the limits in a different way than other big beers.

Tasty, soothing, rich, sweet, well-made and different. You better like grapes and red wine if you're gonna tackle this. The closest comparison I can make is Westvleteren 12, another vinous quad of fine quality. Not only in terms of flavor, but it looks similar, smells similar and has that same dry, sticky finish. I won't hold out for the opportunity to try them side by side, and I'm not saying it's "as good as", cuz it's not, but if you're jonesing for a Westy 12 and can't locate one, join the club and go for this instead.

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Photo of Chaney
3.17/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Welcome to DC, Sly Fox!

Served in a "Game of Thrones" glass.

A: Poured a dark, dark, brown with a slight bit of translucence, possibly only detected by some serious astronomical tools.

S: PEZ dust, with figs, plums, and various dark fruit. Somewhat understated, yet still present.

T: Kinda strong on the sugar and Belgian yeast front. Totally overwhelming. The fruit was there, along with a bucket of brown sugar.

M: Decent carbonation bill, but this stuff is boozy as hell. Seriously, It's hard to take a gulp of it.

O: This one was fairly cheap, at only $8.99. If you're looking for some cheap social lubricant, go ahead. However, I'll pass on this in the future.

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Photo of DIM
2.54/5  rDev -34.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

a: Clear dark chestnut; pours with a thick fizzy head.

s: Lots of cherries, some kind of artificial sweetner, and flowery booze. Not very Quad like.

t: Very sweet overall but not all that malty. Raisins and cherries are there but kind of syrupy. That artificial from the smell is here too. Lots of sugar but lacks any Belgian yeat character.

m: Gentle fizzy carbonation and a syrupy body.

o: Too sweet and pretty far off-style.

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Photo of mdagnew
4.4/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle bought from Lighthouse Wines, Jordanstown

Poured a deep burgundy red / brown colour with a slight haze... Creamy tan head poured quite foamy but faded very quickly to thin covering with thick edging... fair amount of carbonation bubbles... light patchy lacing...

Aroma - Dark sweet and spicy fruits (raisins, prunes, some blackcurrents), strong toasted toffee maltiness, some molasses notes, yeasty, caramel, light aniseed hints, some light rum traces, vanilla, some nuttiness, peppery hops...

Taste - Spicy dark fruits (definite raisins and prunes, spicy apples, some figs and blackcurrents), brown sugar / toffee sweetness, milk chocolate, toasted malt loaf, strong Belgian yeastiness, light herbal notes, nice warming alcohol, liquorice hints, spicy hops...

Feel - Quite sharp and dry then some smoothness coming through after.. Medium / full bodied... Pretty drinkable considering the strength...

Overall - An excellent Quad and one of the best i've had... recommended...

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Ichor from Sly Fox Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 86 ratings.