White Birch 2 Anniversary Ale - White Birch Brewing
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Ratings: 26 | Reviews: 16 | Display Reviews Only:
2.25/5 rDev -35.3%
Chilled bottle into a glass. Huge thanks to ShogoKawada for the bottle.
A: Pours a maroon body with, surprisingly, almost no head. I noticed that the cork was soaked almost to the base of the mushroom point; did it suffer some loss of integrity? Whatever the case, I expect more bubbles from a Belgian Dark Ale...
S: This was contentious. I poured the beer blind for a few other people and they enjoyed the aroma while hating the flavor. I thought the flavor was better than the aroma. The nose reminds me of a dirty wooden countertop that had just been partially cleaned; it has a candi sugar / yeast note along with oxidized hops and a touch of spicy raisins. It isn't totally awful, but it lacks depth or conviction.
T: This is a beer that appears to lack confidence in its beer-ness. Oxidized hops and a generally muddled flavor of raisins, sweetness, and some spice suggest that this was attempting to be a Belgian beer. The mid-taste is where it falls apart, and the finish is non-existent.
M: The something-spicy quality works with the heat to deliver a modest burning effect.
O: White Birch thrilled me when everything they made was awful. Now I'm angry because they're building up to mediocre. Their beers were a better value when you could count on a trainwreck instead of something completely forgettable.
07-16-2012 05:22:55 | More by Arbitrator
4.1/5 rDev +17.8%
Bottled 6/13/11. #498 of 1110.
Pours a pitch black with a thin brown head into my tulip. I picked the perfect glass, finally!
Sweet, roasty (?). Very stout-like. Plum and dark fruit as well. This has some age on it for sure.
The taste is reflective of this as well. Plum, dark fruit and coffee/cream. Maybe a belgian imperial stout? I have no clue.
Lingering sweet, coffee malt. Good finish. An easy-sipper.
Not bad. I almost forgot I had this in my fridge. Thankfully, it's very pleasing and I'm glad to sample it.
07-11-2012 00:02:29 | More by Brad007
4.1/5 rDev +17.8%
Surprised it took me this long to crack this baby. I guess originally I was looking for people to share since it's so big, or a special occasion, but I saw it in the back of my fridge and said what the hell, time to crack.
The cork looks like it's ready to burst out, so I'll be prepared with another glass to catch the overflow. When I pop the cork, surprise, no eruption, and it looks more like the cork got crushed going in and didn't get pushed in all the way or correctly.
The beer is much darker than I thought, a super dark almost black colored beer, with hints of ruby light sneaking through in the corners, there was pretty much no head though, with just pockets of bubbles floating on the top, and it does have some nice legs on the sides as I swirl.
Nose is very nice, dark malts first, some chocolate with plenty of bakers' chocolate, chocolate covered raisins, some light fig and dark fruits, some molasses, bit of toffee and caramel, cocoa powder, light nutty aromas, hint of candi sugar and a sugary sweetness, and Belgian yeast like esters.
Taste starts a bit syrupy, an earthy almost root like syrupy extraction flavor that would come from sassafras or something like that. Then malts again, some dark chocolate, powdered dry super dark chocolate. Some molasses, toffee, and light caramel again, and hint of candi sugar. Again fruits and light Belgian esters, light fig and date, and chocolate covered raisins, and a light brandy glazed date. A light bready malt flavor emerges as I keep digging, as well as a light earthy bitterness from hints of hops and a bit from some light dark charred malt bitterness. A light bready malt kick adds some malted milk ball flavor. A juicy overall flavor, with hint of sweetness, and just a touch of warming booze. I'm not sure if the balance of the sweetness and fruits, or the age, offset the 9% abv to make it fairly drinkable. The finish is drier but still slightly sticky sweet, smooth, layered chocolate feel that is almost like dark chocolate melted in my mouth, with lingering dark fruits, chocolate raisins, and light Belgian fruity flavors.
Mouth is fuller bodied, rich and a bit creamy, hint of warming booze but barely any, and lighter but decent carb.
Overall pretty good. Not sure if the age helped with the flavors and overall profile, or it's just underrated, but it's pretty tasty beer overall. Wish I had a couple more bottles to continue aging.
06-17-2012 02:44:12 | More by jlindros
2.53/5 rDev -27.3%
Thanks to angrybabboon for half of the bottle.
Appearance: Deep burgundy. Head is off-white, rocky, and leaves a thin ring at edges. Carbonation looks higher than expected. Opaque.
Smell: Candi sugar and Belgian spice. Molasses and prunes. Deep dark fruit and a definite spicy note from the yeast. The smell is kind of one-dimensional. Not a lot of depth. The aromas hit and then disappear.
Taste: Depth and complexity are missing. Plums and Belgian spice. Flavor drops pretty quickly. Some booze on the back. A touch of caramel malts sneak through the yeast, but it disappears almost as quickly as it's noted. Not a lot going on here.
Mouthfeel: Thinner than expected. Sits a little heavier than water. Carbonation is strong and that helps kill any flavor that might try and show up. Very clean overall.
Overall: Mediocre at best. Some solid flavors try to make themselves known, but it ultimately comes across as a half-concocted attempt at a quad that falls far short of the dubbel mark.
12-14-2011 02:35:05 | More by Goblinmunkey7
3.18/5 rDev -8.6%
Review adapted from notes taken 11/13/11
Appearance: Dark brown, starts off with a nice tan head, average lacing
Smell: Definitely Belgian, dark malts, some chocolate, candi sugar, not particularly complex
Taste: Dark malts, figs, Belgian yeast funk, a weird burnt bitterness, some wood - definitely could be better, not that much complexity or depth - aftertaste is somewhat unpleasant, some obvious alcohol
Mouthfeel: Medium body, could be smoother, nicely carbonated, kind of sticky
Overall: Maybe I should have let this sit longer
This wasn't bad, but it definitely wasn't that good. Perhaps it needed some time to mellow. It definitely fits into the broad category of Belgian Dark Ale, but there are definitely others of this style that are better.
11-24-2011 05:38:45 | More by angrybabboon
3.9/5 rDev +12.1%
Nice dark mahogany pour. Dark dark dark. Not a bad 1 finger worth of a mocha color head.
The nose does not overwhelm but there is hints of chocolate, dark raspberries, tabacco, and burnt Carmel. Certainly seems rich.
The taste is more of the same with the burnt Carmel, chocolate and a slight smokey sweetness that plays the first string.
Not bad. Not bad.
10-16-2011 19:59:23 | More by Patrickbrusil
3.73/5 rDev +7.2%
Pours a dark dark black color, from what I can see no light is able to penetrate it (or can't see) even around the edges, smallish head fizzes away super fast, not a lick of lacing on the glass.
Smell is primarily roasted malt with a huge whiff of dark fruit like raisins, hints of chocolate and some light spicing.
Taste is on the sweet side, maybe a touch too sweet, sweet dark malt with a lightly roasted aspect, dark fruit has a huge presence, raisin-like sweetness, the carbonation is quite low which hurts, not as bad as Lost Abbey though, the lack of carbonation I think makes this beer taste sweeter, light alcohol burn kicks in and warms you up, the heat picks up the more it warms.
I think it one need some time on it, maybe some age will up the carbonation levels and smooth out the alcohol heat, as of right now it's a decent beer though.
09-25-2011 00:59:03 | More by deltatauhobbit
3.85/5 rDev +10.6%
Thick, slowly receding foamy head. Some ring lace sticking to the glass. The color is a deep brown where only a bit of light will shine through.
Lots of deep semi-sweet chocolate with some mocha thrown in. I also catch an element of metal to the nose (iron?). Alcohol in background.
Brandy-like alcohol with a hot chocolate kicker. Thin-bodied with a low level of carbonation. Alcohol is definitely present but not overwhelming. The swallow has a touch of hop but the rest is like cognac.
09-18-2011 23:27:15 | More by smcolw
4.2/5 rDev +20.7%
A 750ml bottle poured into a snifter. Very dark brown, near black color. A small tan head that disappeared quickly.
Brown sugar and dark fruit aroma. A little chocolate, and a tiny hint of spice.
Much more going on in the taste. Raisins and plums, toffee, some chocolate. Late herbal hops. Alcohol not noticeable.
Rich, rewarding. A pretty good beer.
09-17-2011 13:30:55 | More by lordofthewiens
3.63/5 rDev +4.3%
Pours without a head ???. Midnight black color, no highlights. Virtually no carbonation and medium bodied. Liquorice nose, flavor is same - liquorice, only slightly less sweet than horehound candy. Higher ABV is hidden, but is warming. Bottled 6/13/11, bottle #830/1110. Glad I didn't cellar this as the brewer suggests. $12.45 for a caged & corked 750ml bottle from Bert's Better Beers Hooksett, NH.
09-13-2011 22:23:29 | More by jdhilt
3.6/5 rDev +3.4%
Pours a dark shade of brown with a smallish tan head that slowly dissipates to a cap on top. Odd that the cork slid out quite easily which is uncharacteristic of White Birch corked bottles. The aroma is reminiscent of a brown ale. Brown sugar, toffee, hints of chocolate mixed with a minty herbal note. Vaguely reminds me of the smell of peppermint patties before you bite into one. Faint yeasty esters deep underneath remind you that this is a Belgian inspired brew. Taste is rich sweet and malty. Wow there's a lot going on in my palette and some of it isn't melding well. Up front I get dark burnt sugars, toffee, prunes and raisins. A minty herbal taste comes in and wipes those flavors away. Slight smoky phenolic comes in about the time the dark fruits come back to linger long into the finish. Full body, medium carbonation, sweet sticky mouthfeel. I enjoyed this beer, but felt the flavors need more time to meld together. That minty herbal taste I am going to assume is a treatment of some sort of birch wood, and I think it is a hair overpowering. That being said I think a couple of bottles of this are going to have to find their way into my basement for future evaluation.
09-05-2011 23:12:38 | More by johnnnniee
3.48/5 rDev 0%
Bottle 361 of 1110. Second to last bottle at Julios. 750ml corked and caged bottle into a tulip glass. Opened with a struggle and a very small pop. A strip on the bottom of the cork split off and was jammed near the top of the neck. I agree with a review below me about using corks that were slightly too large.
A - Dark black body with some read tints. There was some dismal khaki bubbles and edging.
S - Lots of roasty malts and dark fruits. Brown sugar and molasses. Theres also a certain herbal quality that's similar to licorice. Can smell some alcohol.
T - Most of the aroma. Lots of roast and dark fruits with that near licorice earthiness. Pretty unique, but not overtly complex or tasty. The carbonation was really low but the mouth feel was medium and smooth.
O - The low carbonation was a let down. This beer is fairly unique, but its just not that great. I really don't see the point of aging this one. My cork was wedged in like hell, yet the carbonation was already really light. Drink it fresh!!
09-03-2011 01:53:18 | More by davey101
3.53/5 rDev +1.4%
bottle from awesome girlfriend from some store outside boston.
pours a beautiful darkness with about a finger of head... actually said out loud this looks nice.
nose is interesting, belgian for sure... it has that trappist type of yeast smell to it, along with some dark malt mixed in.. it actually works really well. nothing much beyond that, but there is something to it that tells me it doesnt need more.
taste follows the nose, but falls off somewhere. there is the dark malt, trappist yeast is replaced by belgian flavor, with a hint of a coriander thrown in and a nice buttery type of creamy finish. taste is a bit of a disappointment after the nose.
mouthfeel is nice medium to thicker type of body for this style, and actually is quite nice. I like a full body in the beers i drink.
08-27-2011 21:54:27 | More by crusian
3.13/5 rDev -10.1%
750mL brown glass cork and caged bottle. Cork was stuck to the bottle and left quite a bit of residue. Wrong size cork, you might ask?
Pours a thin dark brown with very little head despite a rough pour. Nose is reminiscent of chocolate-covered raisins - velvety chocolate and dried, earthy fruits, plus maybe a little new leather. Palate was thin and rather crisp for the style. Vanilla, fig, raisins, and milk chocolate come to mind. Mouthfeel is wide then crashes to thin making me think this beer wasn't fully fermented. No carbonation to speak of on the mouthfeel.
Notes: I'm really getting sick of wasting my money on beers that people in this region claim to be amazing. I'm done with these guys. I haven't rated all the beers I've tried for these guys, but rest assured this is the last one...One lousy beer after another.
08-25-2011 05:41:34 | More by SFLpunk
4.35/5 rDev +25%
From bottle no. 1,079 of 1,110. Sampled on August 20, 2011. The pour is a beautiful dark brown to nearly black with a moderate, silky brown head. The aroma is nicely smoked with elements of the oak barrel it was aged in and a touch of the hops. The body is both smooth and mild while also being bold. The taste has a nice smokiness, pleasant maltiness, and a powerful bitter but dry hop bite at the end; not a floral hop bite but definitely something that cleanses the senses. The 9% ABV is well masked (until you have finished the bottle, then your head will let you know). A prime example of why White Birch is celebrating its second anniversary and the sky remains wide open for them.
08-20-2011 23:55:26 | More by puboflyons
White Birch 2 Anniversary Ale from White Birch Brewing
80 out of 100 based on 26 ratings.