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Conflux No. 1 (Collage) - Deschutes Brewery

Not Rated.
Conflux No. 1 (Collage)Conflux No. 1 (Collage)

Educational use only; do not reuse.

212 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 212
Hads: 790
Avg: 4.14
pDev: 11.59%
Wants: 112
Gots: 283 | FT: 33
Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery visit their website
Oregon, United States

Style | ABV
American Strong Ale |  11.60% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: msubulldog25 on 05-01-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Deschutes Brewery and Hair of The Dog Brewing Company join forces to weave The Dissident and The Stoic and Fred and Adam into an artistic collage of cask-aging alchemy.

Barrel Aging: Rye Whiskey, Cognac, Sherry, Pinot Noir, Bourbon, new American Oak, and new Oregon Oak

Released in May 2012 (12 oz. bottles)
View: Beers (161) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 212 | Hads: 790
Reviews by jaasen64:
Photo of jaasen64
4.32/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into Jackie O's snifter. Best after 4/30/13.

A- Pours a slightly translucent dark cherry mahogany with a thin layer of brownish yellowish head. About average carbonation. Not too much lacing.

S- Bourbon + Cognac, molasses, cherries, and a little bit of acetone up front mixed with a variety of different woods predominantly oak. Above average aroma strength.

T- Sweet molasses, bourbon, pinot noir finishes with a sweet dark fruit taste (plums, dark cherries, etc.) mixed with oak and a nice sweet dark cherry aftertaste that lingers for awhile. A little bit overly sweet in my opinion.

M- A little bit syrupy, a tiny bit thick but fairly medium bodied, abv very well hidden, a little bit of heat but not much at all especially because it hasn't reached its best after date. Not too much carbonation.

O- This was a very nice blended Strong Ale Collaboration. It had a nice complexity, with the multitude of barrel aging definitely showing a complex array of flavors. My only problem was that it was a little bit too syrupy. Unfortunately I've never tried any of the base beers so I can't compare. I picked up a few bottles and I'm hoping to age a few and hopefully try one side by side with the base beers. I'll definitely revisit this one after the best after date. I think it will age very well.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of FalconOne
4.61/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

One of the most complex and interesting beers that I have ever tasted. It is a fantastic layer upon layer of incredible richness of aroma and flavor. A truly wonderful beer that one should seek out and enjoy!

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Photo of BrewChatKen
4.75/5  rDev +14.7%

Aroma was huge and complex, there was raisin, plum, strawberry, cherry, grapes, wine, whiskey, booze, a sour vinegar element and oak. The color was interesting as well, it poured a hazy deep amber, almost brown, color with very little head, typically indicative of a sour. Lo and behold it was quite tart on the palate, I know there was a sour beer involved and wine barrel aging, and I really liked that. Also got raisin, plum, blackberry, pomegranate, wine, cherries, whiskey/bourbon and wood. There's was a nice sweetness running through it in addition to the sourness, and some earthiness. It was full bodied, but also crisp and tart. All in all I thought this was an incredible beer with a lot of depth and complexity. Glad I was able to try it and can't wait to see what other craziness comes out of this conflux series in the future. Cheers!

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Photo of LambicPentameter
4.33/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The coup de grace of our Conflux No. 1 tasting, we enjoyed this out of a 12 oz brown bottle with a "best after" date of 4/30/13. Even though I've had this beer before, it will be interesting to see if I can pick out the various components from the blended beers--Fred, Adam, Stoic, Dissident. Poured into an old fashioned glass.

Appearance (4.25) - I really expected this one to look a bit muddled with the various styles being included, but it pours a gorgeous chestnut hue of brown with some reddish tints and a tiny bit of haze, but less haze than I expected. Atop the body sits a finger of ecru foam that shows moderate retention before fizzling away to a ringlet and spots of film on the surface. Lacing is subdued and faint.

Smell (4.25) - Here is where I start to recognize the various notes of the beers I just drank. There are notes of both light and dark fruits, also a hint of pomegranate tartness that pairs up well with the balsamic acidity to balance the richer notes of leather and dried tobacco that peek through from the Adam. I really didn't expect to be able to detect components of each beer so distinctly, but here we are. So far this is a massive success.

Taste (4.5) - Much like the smell, the component beers are each well-represented, with none really overpowering the others. Here, the fruitiness becomes a little more distinct, with notes of golden raisin and dried fig, as well as some black plum. I don't get the pomegranate as much at this phase, but there is a semi-sweet tartness on the finish that provides just a touch of bite. Any more and it would ruin the more savory and sweet elements of the taste, but as it is, it's just a point of subtle interest. There are earthy undertones and wet bark going on here as well, and just hints of bitterness that somehow help to balance out all the disparate components.

Mouthfeel (4.0) - Medium-bodied and moderate carbonation, with a slightly creamy feel and just a pinch of puckering on the tongue.

Overall (4.25), this is one of the oddest and most interesting (in a good way) beers I've ever had. While it's far from the first blended beer I've sampled, I think it may be the first where the beers used were so stylistically stratified. A golden strong ale, an old ale, a quad and an oud bruin aren't a combination that I would have imagined myself. Then throwing it into seven different barrels... crazy. In some ways, it's amazing that it turned out as well as it did--with so many elements, there were many places along the way where something could have gone very wrong. Cheers to HOTD and Deschutes for showing ambition and kudos to them for it paying off. I will certainly buy this beer anytime I run across it sitting on a shelf, even if it's $10 for 12 oz.

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Photo of Phocion
4.7/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

12 oz. bottle dated "Best After" 4/30/13. Poured into a tulip with a dark brown color and mahogony highlights. Small foamy beige head with moderate retention that settles into a thin crown and moderate lacing.

Aroma is massive and very complex. Huge barrel flavors abound. Dark cherry tartness combines with a big rye whiskey aroma. Woody. Vinous and a bit of cream/oloroso sherry-like sweetness and nuttiness which also imparts just a touch of oxidized character. A bit of brown sugar and vanilla.

Flavor is just as complex as the nose. Heavy BDSA-like candi sugar dark fruits combine with a pinot noir-like cherry, presumably from the barrels. Light sherry-like oxidation. Tart and very mildly acidic flavors cut through the heavy sweetness. Whiskey flavors linger but don't overpower. Slightly dry, earthy, woody finish. Alcohol flavors surprisingly muted considering the whopping ABV.

Heavy body and relatively low carbonation. Thick, chewy mouthfeel, but not cloying. No astringency. Very warming alcoholic feeling.

Wow, this beer has a lot going on. A blend of four big beers isn't enough, so Deschutes just had to stick it in multiple barrels. Currently it's drinking very well, with all the barrel and beer flavors blending very smoothly. Sweet, dry, and tart flavors all combine to give it a phenomenal balance for such a complex and big beer. Sherry, bourbon, rye, and pinot noir barrels are all noticeable but none overpowering. This was definitely a treat.

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Photo of adapt313
4.55/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This was one of the most deeply layered and complex beers I've ever tasted. Masterfully blended and better than the sum of its parts. All four beers that went into this were present and distinguishable. Huge wine barrel and rye whiskey aromas combine with caramel, vanilla, and tobacco yet still manages to finish tannic and dry. The inclusion of the dissident in the blend really rounded everything out and counters all of the big, sweet flavors with a tanic, tart, and dry finish. Thick, heavy, and relatively low carbonation. This has so much going on yet blends so seamlessly together. Very impressed.

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Photo of oberon
3.81/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours into a stemmed glass a deep tawny brown with a tinge of amber,a sticky half finger light beige head atop.Sour cherry and caramel in the nose with a bit of hay.The palate is hit with a sour almost lactic note along with some mild chocolate,Iam not a sherry fan, the sour/lactic tones win out.Wow that was unexpected with it's out of the mainstream flavors here.I admit the sourness hit me sideways.

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Photo of SanFranJake
4.5/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of dimitrov
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of bulldogg915
4.75/5  rDev +14.7%

Photo of oteixeira
3.5/5  rDev -15.5%

Photo of biclinoe
4.56/5  rDev +10.1%

Photo of NWer
4.75/5  rDev +14.7%

Photo of DaftPatrick
3/5  rDev -27.5%

Photo of warnerry
4/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of Beaver13
3.83/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, best after 4/30/13, bought 5/17/12. Pours hazy reddish amber with a small creamy off white head that goes to a thin film that laces the glass.

The aroma is some oxidized sherry with some fruity oak and alcohol.

The flavor is figgy vinous fruits, vanilla, oak and some strong alcohol and slight oxidation. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with smooth carbonation.

Overall, aging helped this one. A nice flavorful aged beer - tastes like an older English barleywine.

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Photo of Callmecoon
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of olradetbalder
4/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of Skye1024
4/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of fo1ksguitar
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of chossboss
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of bsp77
4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Snifter.

Appearance: Dark reddish-brown with thin cream colored cap.

Smell: Tart cherries, vinegar, oak, rye, caramel, toffee, dark fruits, etc., etc.

Taste: Uh, no idea how to describe this. Definitely cherries, vinegar and loads of barrel aging. There seems to be a sickly sweet malt backbone of overripe fruits and toffee. What else - leather, figs, rye, pomegranate, cider. No hops to speak of.

Feel: Thick, chewy body with moderately low carbonation. The body seems a little thick for a beer that is tart. Warming, but less than expected.

Overall: This is a huge mess. However, the vortex of flavors are pretty intoxicating. As others have said, Dissident dominates the aroma and taste, but the feel is more Old Ale like. Seems like the balance could have been better, but glad I tried this.

 841 characters

Photo of bpfrush
4.25/5  rDev +2.7%

Photo of warmbier804
4/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of MattyG85
4.42/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Surly Darkness chalice glass. Label says best after 4/30/13.

Appearance: Pours a very deep and cloudy brownish amber orange with a moderate amount of bubbles. About one finger of off white head that fades into a thin patchy layer. Leaves a decent amount of lacing on the glass.

Smell: A very big aroma of barrel and tart fruits. Big barrel presence with hints of bourbon whiskey, oak, vanilla, wood,and some rye. Lots of fruit and wine like scents including hints of tart cherries, apple, grapes, and dark fruits including raisins, plum, and fig. Some molasses and brown sugar. Big malt presence with hints of caramel, toffee, and biscuit. Some alcohol. Smell is sweet and tart but far from cloying. A very complex aroma that comes together very well.

Taste: As big, complex, and tasty as it smells. The barrel aging shines upfront with a taste of bourbon whiskey, wood, oak, vanilla, and rye. A big complex fruit blend that is sour and wine like. Notes of tart cherries, apples, grapes, pear, and dark raisins, plums, and fig. Sweet brown sugar and a little molasses. Soft malts with some notes of sweet caramel, toffee, and light biscuit. Some alcohol can be tasted. Tastes sweet but it is also fairly drying and balanced. A very complex taste with lots of subtle notes that are easy to miss. Very good taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Creamy, juicy, and somewhat slick. Actually fairly smooth considering how big and complex it is. A little alcohol heat is felt.

Overall: A really good mix of big beers here. The big flavors blend well and avoid becoming a cloying mess. Very well done.

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Conflux No. 1 (Collage) from Deschutes Brewery
92 out of 100 based on 212 ratings.