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AleSmith Decadence 2006 (Dead By Dawn) - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
AleSmith Decadence 2006 (Dead By Dawn)AleSmith Decadence 2006 (Dead By Dawn)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

123 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 123
Reviews: 106
rAvg: 4.18
pDev: 11.24%
Wants: 26
Gots: 8 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  9.90% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes/Commercial Description:
This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: hoppymeal on 07-09-2007)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 123 | Reviews: 106 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of tmoneyba
4.22/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle shared by shigadeyo.

Poured hazy dark brown with a moderate to large frothy brown head that mostly lasted with excellent lacing.

Heavy toasted toffee, woody and prune with a small alcohol aroma.

Full body with a creamy texture and flat carbonation.

Heavy balanced toasted prune and malt flavor with a heavy bittersweet finish of long duration.

This is a standout beer.

tmoneyba, Jan 14, 2009
Photo of gford217
4.38/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottles courtesy of WeeHeavySD and dave12285 poured into a snifter.

This is a beautiful looking beer which pours a dark brownish ruby color with a big rocky tan head that lingers as a cap for the duration with tons of lacing.

Aroma is massive and complex, though Im not sure what I expected from an imperial red. The hops have certainly faded a bit with maybe a hint of pine up front. However, its the caramel malts that dominate the nose with a big sugary sweetness that reminds me of a big American barleywine.

The taste is certainly closer to a barleywine than anything else with tons of caramel malt sweetness with a healthy dose of brown sugar. Dark fruits, plums and raisins especially, are present in the taste as well as hints of orange zest.

Mouthfeel is creamy with strong carbonation that seems to mellow as the beer warms a bit. Sticky sweet throughout the finish.

Given my experience with Alesmith, I guess I shouldnt be surprised that this is a great beer. Its a big beer that does a solid job of hiding the alcohol and is just plain enjoyable.

gford217, Jan 13, 2009
Photo of WeeObese
4.45/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep amber almost mahogany with a small but dense tan head. Smells of sweet malt, slight sherry/port oxidation, carmel covered apples, and a slight hop aroma. Hop flavor followed by a rich carmel malitiness and a slight roasty astringency followed buy a muted but still noticeable hop bitterness. Nice body and good carbonation for the style. Really liked this beer, too bad it was the only one left in my buddy's cellar

WeeObese, Jan 13, 2009
Photo of yemenmocha
4.58/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2006 Decadence, tasted winter 2009.

Pours hazy dark brown with enormous light tan head. Head retains for an eternity, and certainly enhances the aromatics.

Nose is sour cherries with that powdery scent from a freshly opened package of marshmallows.

Palate offers soft, chewy caramel-cherry malt with no signficant hop flavors, unless of course that is the source of the cherry. Full bodied, incredibly creamy as it coats the palate, and finishes with some sourness. Alcohol is relatively muted, considering how strong it is.

yemenmocha, Jan 10, 2009
Photo of hellbilly
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

luckily no one finished this off and i got half the bottle to myself the day after the holiday tasting.

this poured a very dark auburn brown. it's hazy and is topped by a fairly large orange tinted sugar cookie dough colored head. lots of spotty lacing along with some random drips.

lots of brown sugar butterscotch in the nose joins with caramel, vanilla, orange, grass, wood, perfumey flowers and drying/parching notes of pine, specifically rosemary.

there's a slight oxidation in the grains but not off putting. rather, it lends another dimension of complexity and depth. it's a touch sweet on the palate but there is a nice rich payoff... brown sugar, orange, grass, toffee, toasted nuts, faint mild chocolate, dry earthy spices and a piney hop finish. a light bitterness keeps the medium to full body and slick creamy mouth feel in check.
8/5/8/4/18/4.3

hellbilly, Jan 08, 2009
Photo of magictrokini
4.43/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Cloudy dark mahogany with a creamy, thick off-white head. Hoppy pine and grapefruit, toasty malt, caramel and spun sugar in the nose. Oily mouthfeel. Rich and balanced malt and hop flavors. Overripe citrus, like a blood orange and pink grapefruit. More resin than in the nose. Almost like pine sap, soooo good. Sticky caramel, similar to the type in a Rolo. Mellow oakiness and cognac finish. Comes out stronger as it warms. Long and sticky finish. Very, very nice.

magictrokini, Jan 05, 2009
Photo of BasementDweller
4.13/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750 ml bottle. Pours a titilating ruby red with a frothy head. Aroma is of sweet, dark, sun-dried fruit. Toffe, caramel, and syrupy plums make up the bulk of the flavor profile. Body is fuller than most, bordering on syrupy but falling just short. Maltiness balanced well with a solid earthy, floral hop note. Wonderful brew. Always ISO!!

BasementDweller, Dec 29, 2008
Photo of HoustonTX
4.15/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2006 Vintage.

Saved this bad boy for 2 years for a special occasion, and I felt today(Christmas)would be an opportune time to pop it open.

Really beautiful pour, deep dark brown body with only minor translucency. Huge mountainous mocha head, with everlasting retention.

Sweet succulent aroma of dates, figs, chocolate, and toffee.

Very balanced and assertive taste. Sweet caramel malt upfront, with notes of sweet currant, fig, plum, dates, and tobacco. Aggressive citrus and floral hops round out the back end, providing excellent balance. Flavor tones bounce around from start to finish from sweet, to sour, to slightly tangy, to borderline bitter. Truly a treat for your mouth, and belly. At 10% ABV, this one drinks like it's water. No alcohol apparent on the palate, but warming going down.

This is an excellent beer, and to be honest really a quite unique one overall. It really has it's own unique flavor about it.
For holding up for 2 years, the hops are still definitely there, and actually quite prevalent. It's still pretty hoppy. The dark fruit notes, and sweetness remind me of a Belgian Strong Ale, while the hopping reminds me of a Barleywine/IPA. Utterly unique.
I'm extremely glad this one held up so well.
Well done Alesmith, once again, this one was a beauty.

HoustonTX, Dec 28, 2008
Photo of joepais
3.9/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a Maudite snifter produced a finger worth of off white head that goes to a thick lace. All this is on top of a blood read body ale

The aromas are very malt forward the hops are all but gone now from the nose. What is left is a lot of dark fruits and spice in the aromas

The flavor of sweet malt and dark fruits bust right out of this one. A great smooth sipper really enjoyable

I drink this again if it was around but I don't expect to see it anymore. great drinking experience all around

joepais, Oct 19, 2008
Photo of FtownThrowDown
4.05/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a reddish brown in color. A very nice and frothy head on the pour. Looks good. Smell is mostly hops, both piney and citrusy. Taste is all over the place. This is one interesting beer. This comes across as a IPA/red/BSA combo. Huge malt backbone and what tastes like a belgian yeast being used. This one kept me thinking the entire bottle. Well made beer.

FtownThrowDown, Oct 01, 2008
Photo of srandycarter
4.3/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Cola colored, huge sticky head, slow to leave. Webby lacing.

S - Toasted Sweet malt and bitterness.

T - Cocoa, brown sugar, molasses come to mind. Nice huge malt equally met by neutralizing bitters. As it warms, gets creamier and reminds me a little of a mocha hot chocolate (lots heavier on the chocolate and cream than the coffee) with a shot of brandy.

M - Full, heavy, well coating. Great carb. Nice balance.

D - Grading considering the style. Big beer, big ABV, but still, pretty darn drinkable even past the first one!

srandycarter, Sep 16, 2008
Photo of Phocion
4.63/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750ml bottle poured into a pint glass. Somewhat of a sloppy pour on my part, and I was shocked to see an entire half the glass filled with a huge, massive rocky brown head. A whole five minutes later, it finally falls to around a finger, with huge but intermittent root-beer-float-like lacing all around this dark ruby-brown beer.

I'm not sure what to expect with an "Imperial Red" ale, but dammit this thing smells amazing. Huge malty aroma, with a very sweet, sticky caramel and brown sugar flavor working beautifully with a healthy dose of roasted malts. And it may be somewhat in the background (perhaps because of the age?), but there's still a nice piney hoppiness to this beer as well.

The taste on this thing is almost like a barleywine with an extra shot of caramel. The hops bill is a little bit more complex than the nose let on, with a bit of citrus in the background. Roasted malts, tobacco, and dark fruits also make their way up to the front. Somewhat of a nuttiness almost reminiscent of an English brown ale (on steroids of course) in the aftertaste. Almost unbelievably, despite weighing in at a massive 9.9% ABV, I can hardly even tell.

Somewhat chewy mouthfeel, but still very smooth. This is a truly amazing beer, and the only thing that hinders the drinkability is knowing that I only have one more bottle, and I am beginning to question whether or not I should trade it. Definitely in my top-10 list, Alesmith does it again...

Phocion, Sep 08, 2008
Photo of Mryup
4.7/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

My second stint with this beer. Ive given it two years to properly age. I am excited.

A: A gentle pour into my Duvel tulip glass provides a lingering 1/4 toasted/Whopper malt head. A deep rich engrossing brown with reddish hews dancing about here and there. Note: use a champagne flute and it looks EPIC! It strikes me as under the radar. You have to focus to notice the subtle hints of greatness.

S: Wow...hops jump out at you first. Ive spent a good amount of time acquainting my schnoz with this. A complex symphomatic plethora of boldness that includes citrusy hops, tart fruit (strawberry in particular), some subtle nutty characteristics and some caramel malt tones. It smells incredibly well balanced but we shall see...

T: Berry and melon fruits attack with an equal measure of hops/resins. Nutty, aleish, alcoholic esters flank the taste buds. Cantalope in particular with strawberry. On a complexity scale about a 7.8. Well balacned and bold.

M: Medium/heavy with perfect CO2. Goes unexpectedly dry which isn't bad but it just seems like...I don't know...it seems as if the ending could of had more.

D: This is a heavy hitter. A true no holds barred sipper. But consider the style and ABV.

Another great brew from Ale Smith which will be underapprietiated because of its uniqueness.

Mryup, Aug 18, 2008
Photo of lightindarkness
4.03/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Overlord for this one.

Sits deeply copper colored with a continuous khaki cream head in the glass. Looks full and sticky.

Nose is flooded with rich caramelly smell and red malt aromas of strawberry and overripe fruits with a fruit bread warmth and deep graininess. Alcohol mixes with sweet smells and comes across slightly phenolic.

Taste is loaded with sweetened grains. Rich malt swells and dominates the overall flavor, peaking with notes of caramel and ripe melon. Sweetness of ripe red fruits and melon is very nearly cloying, making it much heavier than it initially seems. Soft full finish has a lingering sticky sweetness. Very pleasant flavor, but quite sweet.

Mouthfeel has plenty of tingly high carbonation on a fuller medium body. It comes across as being rather rich, but very tasty. Sweetness and high abv make it difficult to drink a lot, but it's hard not to want to keep sipping.

lightindarkness, Aug 01, 2008
Photo of JDV
4.43/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bottle courtesy of Miketd, I believe. Thanks man!
Pours a deep, reddish crimson color. Smell is rich, red ale like intense sweetness. Taste is slightly hoppy up front still, with a dense red ale like maltiness. Nice, crisp and very fresh tasting, and still comes across very balanced. This was fantastic!

JDV, Jul 01, 2008
Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.38/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Equal parts maraschino cherry and sunset coral with slices of juicy orange along the edges of the glass. What a great color for a beer named Imperial Evil Dead Red. A loud escape of CO2 on crown cracking was followed by the formation of an expansive cap of golden beige foam. It's a little stiff and unsticky, so I don't expect much lace. And don't get much.

The aroma is dead on for an Imperial red. It smells like the beer will have a sweet, caramel-like bottom end, with a top end of citrus fruity hops. I couldn't find the hop bill, but several of the C-hops must be present. Chinook at least. For what it's worth, no alcohol is noted in the nose.

It was inevitable given the ingredients, but Dead By Dawn tastes like an especially caramel malty American barleywine. That's what often happens when there's so much malt present and when the ABV approaches double digits. Imperial red ale... American strong ale... American barelywine... it doesn't really matter in the end. The only thing that matters is that it's good beer.

The flavor profile includes rivers of melted caramel, sticky dates, cherry pipe tobacco and candied citrus peel (orange and grapefruit). Alcohol is still remarkably well hidden, which is an amazing achievement. Warming brings about a whole host of welcome changes: bolder flavor; a more complete melding of the individual flavors; a smoother, more chewy, more creamy mouthfeel; and a lessening of the initially too rambunctious carbonation.

AleSmith has a permanent place in my top-10 favorite American craft breweries because they never disappoint, they usually hit the nail on the head (Grand Cru, Horny Devil and Wee Heavy) and they occasionally achieve true greatness (Speedway Stout, YuleSmith and IPA). Imperial Evil Dead Red... or Dead By Dawn... or whatever it's called, doesn't enter the upper echelon from these guys, but it's a fantastic anniversary ale that I'm enjoying immensely.

BuckeyeNation, May 03, 2008
Photo of willjschmidt
4.45/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 750ml champagne bottle into a Stone IRA glass.

A: Pours a deep and murky reddish brown color. A big, thick, pillowy head stays on top for a long time.

S: A bit sweet on the nose with caramel being the dominate aroma. A whiff of alcohol at the end.

T: A fabulous beer. Layers upon layers of complex and sweet flavors. In order of prominence I got: caramel, toffee, candied fruits, and maybe a bit of chocolate. It's all balanced out with a solid hop bitterness at the finish. A wonderful sipper and a perfect nightcap with a rich desert. It is a bit boozy though.

M: Creamy, rich, smooth, and delicious. An exceptional mouthfeel.

D: I really enjoyed this one. I had to ding it on drinkability for being so boozy but it's really a great beer.

willjschmidt, Apr 29, 2008
Photo of RblWthACoz
4.47/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A heaping pile of thanks to IntriqKen for this one. I also want to thank my roommate (or whoever it was that came over to my place to hang out while I was at work...) that locked the bathroom door from the inside. That was sweet of you. I guess I also need to thank God, or whatever supreme deity exists out there, that I don't have the sh*ts right now. Otherwise, this would end up being an interesting night. Does anyone have a paper clip?

Pours a fully fogged in reddish brown with a small creme head that falls to nothing fairly quickly. Nose is very leafy with some fruits mixed in. Definite wood noticed. Thick character overall. Excuse me. This is too good to write about right now. Let me just drink some more of this and come back to you.

Okay, okay. Let's focus here people. The flavor is a nice deep red. A slight bit boozy, but the body of flavor character meshes just fine and balances it out. Great earthy tones with a woody fruit thing. This just typifies a red to me. And an imperial no less. Feel is very nice. Great carbonation and a smooth liquid feel. This is extremely drinkable. Absolutely an amazing beer. At first I thought to myself that maybe I should be sharing this with someone. Then as I started to drink it I said, nah. I'll be greedy with this one. Just don't tell anyone. Our secret?

RblWthACoz, Apr 16, 2008
Photo of SPLITGRIN
4.72/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Sampled on 10-30-07

I thought this beer was just right for all-Hallows eve.

A huge deep tan head has amazing staying power as it slowly fades from a full three fingers. It leaves scattered lace on the glass. Body is a "evil" deep blackish red, with the red hints only showing on the edges. Nose has seet yeasty spices that remind me of smickerdoodle cookies, sweet dark fruits maybe rasins and dates, with some oily hops. A very rich complex darkness enters the mouth on first sip. Burnt malt brings with it dark thick fruity notes and a very soft but consistant spicey feel. I also pick up a slight piney crisp hop character on the finish. The mouthfeel is decently thick and nicely numbing. Alchol is not up front and very well received. I was glad I picked this one it was spooky good.

SPLITGRIN, Apr 01, 2008
Photo of jjayjaye
4.25/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Stoneman78 for the opportunity to sample this one.

Pours a slightly hazy crimson amber color with a big stiff sandy colored head that resists fading. A sheets of Belgian lacing left behind. The smell is aggressive and hugely malty, caramel and brown sugar with an overwhelmed citrus note. Lightly carbonated, the mouth feel is heavy, almost chewy and smooth. Full flavored, the caramel malt, brown sugar and molasses taste is very sweet. It also has an earthy yeast and doughy character that lingers appropriately. A real nice drinker. It reminds me some of a Great Divide or Southern Tier Barleywine. The 10% ABV is warming, but otherwise well integrated. Highly recommended.

jjayjaye, Mar 29, 2008
Photo of Phyl21ca
3.63/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of Bu11zeye: Poured a deep red/burgundy color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of sweet malt is reminiscent of a barley wine with some citrusy hops also noticeable. Taste is a mix between some barley wine type sweet malt with some bitter and citrusy hops also noticeable. Medium body with some good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. Overall, while this is not a bad beer I thought it was slightly one-dimensional and IMO over-rated.

Phyl21ca, Mar 26, 2008
Photo of Trueant1
4.85/5  rDev +16%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a thick pancake batter like head that coats the side of my st. Bernardus chalice.
Pours deep red color. Sits in the glass a perfect burgendy red. Looks superb!

The aroma when I opened this was off the scale!
Sweet toffie malts and ..this beer is 4 years old by now and smells of fresh hops! WOW!

The taste is beer perfection. Bready malts, with dark fruits that balance out by intence hop bitterness. Almost a chocolatey flavor. Even some licorice and figs. A lot going on here. Alcoholic bite on the aftertaste being balanced by the hops.

Mouthfeel is thick and coats the whole mouth like a milkshake. My only gripe ..if there really is one...is too much carbonation.

Drinkability is awsome for a 10% beer.

Wish they would brew this masterpiece again!

Trueant1, Mar 13, 2008
Photo of charlzm
4.33/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Consumed 9/12/07.

Pours a lovely deep ruby/brown shade with a large tan head (hints of pink?). The foam is dense and settles in much the same way as Guinness, but much faster and with larger bubbles. The beer has lively carbonation; bubbles stream constantly up the sides of the glass.

Malty and brown are the words that pop into mind when the nose is sampled. Hints of... maple syrup? Port wine? are also lurking.

The flavor is unexpectedly thin, almost as if the beer is evaporating off the tongue. Honey and molasses are present, as is a brown sugar sweetness. Well, until the swallow. Then the malt of this beer pops out, accompanied by candied fruit I can't quite put my finger on (cherries? red grapes?). The finish is amazingly clean with almost no astringency and only a fleeting alcohol warmth. A vinous aftertaste flirts with the tongue and quickly vanishes.

How can a 10% beer be so light and drinkable?

charlzm, Feb 29, 2008
Photo of t0rin0
4.33/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a wonderful beer that really should be produced again. It pours a hazy reddish brown. Its not quite murky but it is hazy. The tan head is tall and thick and stays around for a while. Kinda mysterious looking. Definitely inviting.

The smell is very complex. There is a ton of sweet caramel malts in there and theres also some dark fruits to be smelled. Also a good amount of hops in the nose. There was a touch of alcohol in the nose but we can't hold that against them (it is 10% abv).

The taste is still fairly hoppy but then its only a year old. There are some piney hops present and lots of sweetness coming in the form of caramel and plum. The alcohol could be tasted at the begining but by the time you get half way through the bottle you won't notice it. All around beautiful flavor.

The body was nice and heavy and viscous. Very very drinkable beer that can consumed fast but whats the point. Enjoy it and know that you'll probably never drink this again.

t0rin0, Feb 15, 2008
Photo of illidurit
4.43/5  rDev +6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter. Huge tan head leaves massive lacing all the way down to the murky, reddish-brown body. Retention is incredible.

Aroma is similar to winter Yulesmith, with fresh pineapple scents on top of huge candied maltiness. I noticed some grape too.

Taste is, well, decadent. Rich caramel is the main flavor, with swirling notes of grapefruit and pine. Some lactic sugar and dark fruits here too.

Body is as full as it gets. The carbonation and the hops are just enough to cut through the sweetness and create a surprisingly dry finish. A little too rich to be extremely drinkable, but the 10% is hidden well.

illidurit, Feb 07, 2008
AleSmith Decadence 2006 (Dead By Dawn) from AleSmith Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 123 ratings.