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Smoked & Oaked Belgian-Style Ale - Epic Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smoked & Oaked Belgian-Style AleSmoked & Oaked Belgian-Style Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

207 Ratings
THE BROS
85
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 207
Reviews: 76
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 13.7%
Wants: 12
Gots: 39 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Epic Brewing Company visit their website
Utah, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  11.90% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Smoked cherry wood malt brings a smoky sweetness to the caramel malts and a bit of peat flavor with a Belgian-style yeast. The entire batch aging in the whiskey barrels nicely dries out the perceived sweetness of the caramel malt leaving an almost scotch like taste.

ABV varies by batch.

(Beer added by: Wasatch on 07-11-2010)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 207 | Reviews: 76 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of TheBigLebrewski
1.68/5  rDev -56.6%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Unappealing appearance. Ugly mid-brown, opaque shade that looked cloudy, even muddy.
Smell was an even greater put-off.

The drinking buddy pulled it off the tip of my tongue when he said it smelled like meat. I didn't get meat in the smell, but I certainly do in the flavor - cured, sweet meat. Indeed, the flavor is not too far from Rogue's Voodoo Donut, in certain ways. The Belgian yeast certainly maintains a difference in flavor, but it ends up providing the factor of sweetness that brought the voodoo to mind (which contained maple).

In my opinion, it's not smoky enough. The smoked aspect seemed to be what came through as a bit of salt, and even more-so meat. Which I wouldn't choose as a flavor in any sort of beverage, save maybe bacon bloody marys. The oak was lacking as well, being completely overwhelmed by yeast and malt, and, if anything, contributing to the carnivorous off-flavors.

I was pretty excited about this - I tend to favor both smoked and oaked beers of various styles, but the Belgian sweetness and the weak oakysmokiness didn't pair well at all.

Could the bottle have gone bad?

TheBigLebrewski, Dec 27, 2012
Photo of Wasatch
2/5  rDev -48.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

22oz. Bomber
Exponential Series
1800 Bottles Produced
Release #1
$11.89 ea.

Poured into a chalice a amber color, some carbonation, fizzy white head, which leaves pretty quickly, with some sticky lacing. The nose is, malty, with some yeast, caramel. The taste is malty, yeast note. Medium body. Barely Drinkable.

Wasatch, Jul 11, 2010
Photo of gunpwdr
2/5  rDev -48.3%

gunpwdr, Mar 20, 2013
Photo of diamond_mind
2/5  rDev -48.3%

diamond_mind, Sep 01, 2014
Photo of pokesbeerdude
2.38/5  rDev -38.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

22oz bottle from the brewery, into an old school NB globe. I think it was around $12. Release #2, 8.8% abv.

A: Pours a burnt sienna color with a stark white head, not quite an inch or so that recedes to a thin cap of bubbles and a few chunks of lacing. Fairly cloudy. A few spots of lacing as the head recedes. Not a bad looking beer.

S: I'm not sure if this is supposed to be infected, but I get some very distinct lacto sour/funky notes from the nose mixed with some yeasty esters and at the back a hint of peat smoke. Decent bit of booze here. Not pleasant.

T: Once again, not sure what the hell they were shooting for here. I get notes of caramel, barbequed pork, banana, cherries, smoke, whiskey, oak, and this odd out of place tart flavor way at the end. Fairly estery in there as well with a few additional notes of cloves and apples as well. Incredibly sweet. This is um...better than the nose leads on, but it is completely all over the place.

M: Medium body, light(er) carbonation, fairly boozey and warm, really really sticky on the finish, I don't think this quite got as dry as they wanted, and the oak aging definitely didn't help dry it out any either.

D: Really not for me, this beer is absolutely all over the place with caramel sweetness and a hint of smoke which work together, but the banana/cherry/tartness is odd expecially on top of massive sweetness in this beer. Maybe it is still a little on the young side, but I think they need to do some serious revisions to this one. Sorry, not a winner.

pokesbeerdude, Feb 04, 2011
Photo of kojevergas
2.45/5  rDev -36.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

1 pint 6 fluid ounce brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into an EKU 28 snifter in me gaff in Los Angeles, California. Expectations are below average; I had a beer from this brewery before and I wasn't too keen on it.

Served a bit warmer than refrigerator cold and allowed to warm over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a somewhat pathetic head of a quarter finger, white colour, hardly any cream, decent thickness, and awful retention (even for the high ABV). Colour is a somewhat dark grapefruit-amber. Nontransparent but not opaque. Some floating yeast particles are visible.

Sm: Oak dominates the aroma, with yeast and hints of cherries. Some peat but not quite smoke. A strange off-the-wall aroma that is intriguing but not quite appealing. A mild strength aroma.

T: Some cherry juice notes that are far too strong and tart for the balance. Misplaced oak tones. Awkward peat. Vague fruit esters. A hint of alcohol. No yeast. The peat is too strong. Clean malts are backgrounded. Poorly constructed and badly balanced. The cherry feels artificial and is badly handled. Almost a bit vinegary. No layering, complexity, or subtlety. It's as though the brewers are using all these advanced brewing processes without having mastered the basics. Where's the balance?

Mf: Smooth and wet. Weak and thin. Not carbonated enough. Badly handled. Doesn't suit the flavour profile well at all.

Dr: What is with all the hype for this brewery? This is the second beer from them I've had that I haven't liked at all. Pricey for its limited quality. A big disappointment. I won't be purchasing another Epic Brewing beer unless it's recommended by a friend, has fantastic reviews, or is the only good option. Hard to drink because it's not good. Not quaffable. I wouldn't recommend this to friends or even to fans of the style. A terrible waste of advanced brewing methods and time.

High D+

kojevergas, Apr 07, 2012
Photo of JamFuel
2.5/5  rDev -35.4%

JamFuel, Jul 28, 2013
Photo of trebbates
2.5/5  rDev -35.4%

trebbates, Jun 25, 2014
Photo of roostor07
2.75/5  rDev -28.9%

roostor07, Mar 07, 2013
Photo of Mudawg
2.75/5  rDev -28.9%

Mudawg, Apr 03, 2012
Photo of JohnGalt1
2.75/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Inflatablechair opened this one a while back.. Thanks Sammy.

Pours a hazed orange with a decent lite tan head.

Nose is a pretty standard Belgian strong ale... overly phenolic IMO... tons of clove and quite a bit of band-aid... the phenols go a good way to masking the smoke and the oak... in fact, I get no oak at all... the smoke is more of a bacon aroma.

Flavor is about the same.... sorta acrid bacon with a syrup sweet maltiness... again, the phenols seem stale and medicinal.. tastes like a medicine chest... the sweetness is accentuated by a brutal estery presence... thick apricot and overripe plum.... not digging this one at all.

body and carbonation are both about right... medium...

I need to revisit this one, but I hesitate given the $$$ price tag.

3.5/3/2.5/3.5/2.5

JohnGalt1, Dec 28, 2011
Photo of TMoney2591
2.98/5  rDev -23%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in a Duvel tulip glass.

Thanks to JayQue for this bottle!

Perhaps this would reach pure perfection if it were also yolked...? Either way, it pours a mostly clear magenta-ruby topped by a finger of light tan foam. The nose comprises caramel, candi sugar, banana, clove, light Band-Aid, and a small wave of honey-glazed ham after a little bit o' time sniffing at things. The taste holds notes of caramel, clove, black pepper, banana peel, vanilla, orange peel, honey, and a sort of bitter Band-Aid. The smoke isn't exactly pervasive, and never really achieves any kind of smokiness, just elastic strips that are used to stem the tide of blood flowing from breaks in the skin. All I know is that it doesn't taste very pleasant. The body is a straight medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a lightly syrupy feel. Overall, an okay beer, but the smoke (if you can call it that) doesn't help anything, and the oak does very little, if anything. Not really a fan, here...just disappointed...

TMoney2591, Nov 18, 2011
Photo of acurtis
3/5  rDev -22.5%

acurtis, Oct 20, 2013
Photo of Travisnin
3/5  rDev -22.5%

Travisnin, Sep 13, 2012
Photo of Dave_Treat
3/5  rDev -22.5%

Dave_Treat, Mar 19, 2014
Photo of nmann08
3/5  rDev -22.5%

nmann08, Jan 16, 2012
Photo of ejimhof
3/5  rDev -22.5%

ejimhof, May 06, 2013
Photo of ygtbsm94
3.25/5  rDev -16%

ygtbsm94, Apr 23, 2012
Photo of birchstick
3.25/5  rDev -16%

birchstick, Apr 18, 2014
Photo of MoistPope
3.25/5  rDev -16%

MoistPope, May 17, 2013
Photo of JimmyFlatRock
3.25/5  rDev -16%

JimmyFlatRock, Dec 24, 2012
Photo of chadlebald
3.38/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

An interesting beer for sure.

Pours a cloudy, almost 'chunky' looking way--looks a bit similar to an apple cider (non alcoholic kind).

Aroma is prett nice - both the oak and smoke come through. Caramelly sweet too. Vanilla.

Taste is what kind of throws me - again, both the oak (taste of whisky barrel) and smokiness are there. I like both of those favors in my beers, but combined, my jury is still out: like they are competing for my affection. How does one choose a favorite child? alcohol is quite present too, which seems to go well with the aforementioned whisky oak.

A lot going on in this brew. Worth a try, for sure. Curious to see where YOUR jury nets out!

chadlebald, Dec 02, 2011
Photo of gford217
3.43/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle.

Pours clear amber with a small bubbly beige head that recedes and leaves little lacing.

Aroma is ever-so-slightly smoked with lots of sweet Belgian yeast esters and caramelized sugar.

Taste is more of the same with the sweetness of the Belgian yeast and dark fruits melding with the lightly smoked malts.

Mouthfeel is light bodied for the style with soft carbonation.

This is a subtle beer all the way around. Light sweetness, light smokiness, easy drinking but nothing memorable.

gford217, Mar 29, 2012
Photo of alysmith4
3.43/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I got this beer as a birthday gift, and was finally brave enough to try it the other night. I had a bad experience with scotch once, and just can't get past that taste and smell. Unfortunately, this beer was very scotch-like (which for most people is probably a good thing!), so I can't say I enjoyed it. I do think it's a well-crafted beer however, despite my aversion to it.

alysmith4, Aug 17, 2012
Photo of jzeilinger
3.48/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Batch #9

A - Pours a hazy raisin chestnut brown color with a small amount of head retention and a fairly thin, cream colored lacing ring. Hazy when cold and clears as the beer warms.

S - Dark Belgian candy sugar, caramel toffee malt, figs, raisins, and bready thick aroma.

T - A mixture of of whisky/bourbon, sweet caramel and toffee bread-like malt, oak, vanilla, , some cherries, and prunes.

M - Thick, full bodied, slippery, and sticky with alcohol warming in the back of the the throat.

O - The first thing that comes to mind is "thick and boozy". The smoke character was completely gone but I'm reviewing Batch #9 and I believe the Batch # is now somewhere around 18 so it's to be expected. I'd like to try a newer batch because this is drinking more like a barleywine right now.

jzeilinger, Sep 24, 2013
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Smoked & Oaked Belgian-Style Ale from Epic Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 207 ratings.