Conflux No. 1 (Collage) - Deschutes Brewery
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Ratings: 662 | Reviews: 196 | Show All Ratings:
Reviews by Phelps:
4/5 rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Collage is the first of Deschutes' Conflux brewery collaboration series, but is actually premiering second. Conflux No. 2, a White IPA made with Boulevard Brewing of Kansas City, hit shelves in July 2011. Collage was brewed first but took some additional time to age and blend -- two years and more than 100 rounds of mixing and sampling, according to brewers. It's made up of two beers from each brewery: Hair of the Dog Adam, Hair of the Dog Fred, Deschutes The Dissident and Deschutes The Stoic. To make Collage, the Dissident and Adam were placed in oak barrels that had formerly held Oregon pinot noir. The Stoic was aged in rye whiskey barrels, while Fred was aged in bourbon barrels.
Poured into a tulip or snifter, Collage is the color of rosewood, clear but dark, topped with a finger of feathery khaki foam. The nose is a dance between two partners: the Stoic and the Dissident, which lend aromas of white grapes, biting balsamic and a touch of green apple. Oak is huge here, fresh and untoasted. Deeper inspection reveals weird stuff -- pencil shavings and the lightest hint of leather.
Were I given beer-naming privileges, I might have gone with Mosaic. It's like an image crafted of smaller images -- discernible and enjoyable as a whole, but easily broken into its contributing parts when you focus on them. Here's the Stoic, lending vinous oak, white wine and green apple; there's the Dissident with dark vinegar and cherries. Adam contributes savory leather and dark fruits, while bourbon-aged Fred delivers toffee, vanilla, grapefruit pith and bitterness. There's no getting around the alcohol flavor, but it works well here.
With the combined strength of these brews and the hefty alcohol content they carry, you'd expect an equally hefty body, but this isn't the case. The liquid's actually rather delicate, peppered with just a bit of silky carbonation and pretty well-hidden alcohol. The combination makes the brew surprisingly light and drinkable -- it goes down far more easily than the ABV should allow.
Collage's combination of beers and aging platforms makes for a very interesting sensory experience -- though if I'm being honest, I expected a little more. I think this is too heavy on the Stoic and needs more Adam and bourbon. The bottle advises that it'll taste best a year from now, so we'll see how I feel about it after the malts have had some time to mature and the souring yeast takes more hold.
Serving type: bottle
06-28-2012 05:12:33 | More by Phelps
More User Reviews:
4.05/5 rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4
Bottle from trade. Best after 4/30/13 poured on 4/14/14. Thanks! Pours murky brown with a small creamy khaki head on top. Sour apples, caramel, oak, bourbon, toffee, red wine, booze. Bourbon caramel cherry green apples here? Quite a flavor here. There is definitely a dark sourness from the Deschutes brews, and yet plenty of Fred and nutty figgy toffee caramel remains. Vanilla and bourbon are mellow and accent the many flavors here. Definitely a dry oak presence to finish and some vinous and sherry notes to boot. Big full sticky mouthfeel with plenty of carbonation. My taste buds are so confused. What a weird combination of beers, yet enjoyable. Like a sour barrel aged English barleywine, except way better than that sounds.
Serving type: bottle
04-15-2014 02:01:27 | More by BMMillsy
3.71/5 rDev -10.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75
Murky dark reddish amber with one finger of head that slowly settled to a thin cap. Quite a bit of lacing is left down the glass during consumption. Looks pretty good for a high ABV beer.
My immediate impression upon smelling this beer was that of a red wine such as a pinot noir. Fruity vinous notes to go along with oak, leather, caramel, earth, and dates. The alcohol is also prevalent in the aroma.
Tastes a lot like red wine as well. Vinous flavors along with a strong oak component. Secondary flavors of caramel, dates, and toffee. The flavors do not blend together all that well unfortunately. Alcohol makes itself known with flavor and warmth, but the time in the bottle must of calmed things down a bit. Slightly tart and sweet finish.
Big body with a well matched carbonation. Smoothly textured but stops short of being creamy.
A lot of interesting things going on in this beer but it does not exactly work well together.
Serving type: bottle
04-06-2014 19:20:26 | More by morimech
Conflux No. 1 (Collage) from Deschutes Brewery
92 out of 100 based on 662 ratings.