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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.

766 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 766
Reviews: 210
rAvg: 4.16
pDev: 11.54%
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)
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Ratings: 766 | Reviews: 210 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of shebby
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of StoneTSR
4.07/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Certainly going to revisit this one sometime in 2014, but here's what I found at this point:

APPEARANCE: Deep Mahogany with almost no head, maybe a quarter-inch, but it faded quickly leaving just a wisp or two on the surface. It looks a lot like Bourbon Fred from the Wood except not quite as murky.

SMELL: Smells like a Barleywine, actually, a lot like Doggie Claws. Brown sugar led the way with a slight lemon, sourness underneath. A bit of grape must aroma was also there.

TASTE: Like the aroma, this tastes like a wine barrel aged Barleywine. There is something about Hair of the Dog's beers, they all have this delicious brown sugary sweetness and the Conflux is no exception to that rule. A touch of banana lurks in the background along with a lemon-cherry tartness.

MOUTHFEEL: The Conflux could use a little more carbonation, but at least it has more bubbles than the Bourbon Fred. It is smooth and sweet, but not at all mouthcoating. Pretty average mouthfeel.

OVERALL: This seemed to me to be a Hair of the Dog beer that was apparently brewed at Deschutes, which works for me. Deschutes is great, but I just didn't see any of their signature on this beer. Anyhow, it was quite tasty, I'm very glad I had the opportunity to try, but I am excited to get back to it in a couple years to see how it has improved.

Photo of rudzud
4.4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Argh, didnt mean to crack this now, was not really paying attention to what this was. Received as an extra in a trade. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a nice crystal clear garnet hue with a soft, one finger tan head that fades to leave some sudsy clouding and sticky lacing.

S - Wonderful notes of pinot, light spicy rye, and bourbon. The smell of the barrels is just great. Light alcohol, getting a touch of orange peel and toffee.

T - Taste is pretty interesting. So many different barrels here, getting light rye, cognac, bourbon. The pinot is a bit lighter, getting more orange peel, light alcohol. Some slight caramel malts. This definitely could use some age, however, its delicious.

M - Mouthfeel is awesome for this big of a beer. Great sourness line vinegar from the pinot, its a sipper, but a very enjoyable sipper.

O - This is an excellent blending of beers here. Just delicious. Really want to see how this holds up to age.

Photo of homebrew311
4.14/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into oversized CBS snifter. Apperance is murky reddish with shades of brown. Minimal head upon pour with no lacing. The Dissident is the most prominent beer I get in the aroma. Notes of red wine, oak, and a healthy dose of vinegar come through up front. Vinous fruit qualities are present with a mild amount of bret. Adam joins the party at the finish with a small addition of malty Barleywine/Old Ale goodness. The taste starts off very malt forward with evidence of Fred and Adam's presence. This quickly becomes tart with the return of Dissident. The quad quality from The Stoic is overshadowed by the lactic acid component. The finish is slightly tart with some quad quality coming through. Red wine has an underlying presence and provides some tannins. I'm having trouble finding the spirit character in this, maybe a touch of vanilla comes through. The mouthfeel is surprisingly not that heavy with moderate carbonation. This is an intriguing brew that has a fitting name. I've had a few beer blends and I find this one to be pretty well blended. Each individual brew is present with a definite dominance in the way of Dissident. I would have liked some more Adam character, but this brew is delicious either way. The balance is great for the 11.6% ABV.

Photo of dsuedbeck
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of BeerOps
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of AlexChillton
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of nataku00
4.08/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a tulip glass. Beer pours a dark mahogany, with dark red and brown colors in the edges, with two fingers of foamy light tan colored head. Head dissipates after a few minutes to a bubbly half a finger with plenty of sticky lacing. Knowing the base beers for this, very pleasantly surprised by the nice head.

Nose is interesting, some red wine notes upfront, vinous with tannins, a touch of orange peel, toffee, caramel, toasted malt, lighter balsamic vinegar. Really different smelling beer.

Taking a sip, lots of wine and bourbon barrel character, wine astringency, oak, vanilla, orange peel, balsamic vinegar, toffee, caramel, toasted malt. The Fred and Adam are more prominent in the flavor than in the nose, with old ale leather and tobacco flavors and some lighter citrus from Fred. An interesting and complex beer.

Medium to full body with good carbonation, helps to keep it on the lighter side and somewhat easy to drink. Alcohol is very well hidden, with only a warming in the throat indicating the high abv.

Photo of MarkyMOD
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of ambruns1979
4.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of kojevergas
3.87/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

11.6% confirmed. Best after: 04/30/2013 (but I just can't wait). 12 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into a scotch ale/thistle glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are extremely high given Deschutes' involvement, the complex aging, and the blends used.

Taken from the refrigerator and allowed to stand for a good 15 minutes to warm it up. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a 2.5 finger head of beige colour, fair cream and thickness, and great retention considering the high ABV. Retains at least five minutes. Colour is a dark caramel ruby. Nontransparent. Non-opaque. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show.

Sm: Luxurious bacteria and wild yeast, woody oak barrel notes, brandy, cherry, fig, tart fruit (maybe even dark fruit like plum), clean malts with little caramelization or toasted character, raisin, fermented sugars, and a bit of grape. Really a remarkable, seizing aroma. A mild strength incredibly subtle aroma.

T: Brandy, wood, oak, tart fruit (including cherry, plum, fig, and a hint of raisin), red wine, and marvelous wild yeast and bacteria notes. Spirited, sour, yet still mellow. No real spice or earthiness, but it isn't needed. Delightfully layered and built, with incredible balance for a blend (beating even Lost Abbey Angel's Share). Hopping is very timid and backgrounded. I quite like it. Gets better as it warms as well - especially where the fruit is concerned. Masterfully complex. Really a tasty brew. Rich. No alcohol comes through. Full-bodied and well varied. The flavours are diverse yet collaborative.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Perfect thickness, but merely adequate carbonation. Admittedly, the mouthfeel is a bit off - but it's a blend. Alcohol warms the stomach.

Dr: Very drinkable for the high ABV - surprisingly so. This could be dangerous. Not a session beer, but not a sipper either. It resides in the happy in-betweeny bit. It got better as it warmed. I quite fancy this one. Another solid brew from Deschutes. The style designation is curious, perhaps we need a category that acknowledges blends. I can't wait to try this aged; I'll definitely be having it in a few years with some age on it. I'll run out and buy one as soon as I'm able.

A fantastic candidate for aging. Probably ideal with 3-5 years on it.

Drank adequately from a scotch ale glass, but this really demands a goblet, snifter, or (ideally) a tulip.

Would pair well with cranberry raisins or pate.

This is one to sip on whilst reading a good book.


Photo of bsuedekum
2.25/5  rDev -45.9%

Photo of tonyclifton36
4/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of kevinmkirk
4.4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Cloudy, cola brown pour with zero head, yet a modicum of lacing. The nose is very tart - cherry, raisin, wine, oak, fig, malt. The taste follows the nose identically, with the addition of a whiff of a good port. Mouthfeel is heavy with the appropriate carbonation. Very sippable, if you like the style.

My wife says, "If this beer were a movie, it would be equal parts Gary Oldman, Gary Sinise, Clint Eastwood, and Betty White. It is versatile, mysterious, simply bad ass, and kinda nutty."

I agree with my wife, though I firmly disagree with the idea that this is an "American Strong Ale," and I officially reclassify this as a sour ale. It has been written.

Photo of litheum94
4.42/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Best after 4/30/12. Reviewed 6/27/12.

Pours a deep, deep red that is densely dark but shimmers in the light. One-finger tan head. Quickly fizzles out to a scant cover.
Very complex aromas of tart cherries, oak, cedar and dark fruits. Very spicy, like sandalwood. Tannic, red wine tones. Malty, old ale tones upon deep inhalation.

At first, it's really hard to even tell what's going on here, there's so many layers of flavors. The Stoic thread pops up first, with some bourbon barrel and earthy sweet Quad-like flavors. Vinous, red wine flavors pop up, with some tart cherries (Dissident). Smoke and more barrel flavors come in, with some peppery flavors (Rye from the Fred?). Rounded out with the faintest tones of dark fruit and Old Ale mouthfeel from the Adam.

Wow. There are four distinct beers here all making their presence known, and a ton of different barrel flavors. At first sip, this drinks like a clusterfuck. But then things settle down, and you see how all these threads kind of interlock together. A bold experiment between these two breweries for sure, but it works for me. Can't wait to see how this ages.

Photo of russpowell
4.14/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best after 4/30/13, never gonna be able to wait that long. Why release beer before it's ready?

Pours an effervescent brown with a finger of tan head. Above average head retention & minimal lacing

S: Booze, pine, dates, a bit of oakyness

T: Piney, medicinal with grapefruit & grassyness. Grapefruit & pineapple as this warms, some figgyness & pears with a bit of brett tartness, also some boozeyness. Finishes with with sourwood honey, cherry tartness/dryness & lemongrass; this just got better as this warmed

MF: Slick, slight carbonation, plus boozey warmth

Drinks pretty easy, boozeyness is fairly well hidden, this might age well, still not perfect by no means...

Photo of beertunes
3.95/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into 10oz goblet. Poured a barely translucent mahogany color with less than 1/4 inch of off-white head that had very low retention, it quickly settled into a thin ring, and very light lacing.

The aroma was on the subdued side, some tartness and malts were most noticeable, with some fruit and yeast notes around the edges. Whoa Nellie! This beer hit the tongue with a bold tartness that hinted at sour but wasn't. The above mentioned fruit, yeast, spice and malt were all present, just in a more upfront manner.

The body was very good, bordering on great, full and smooth with tartness adding a nice counter-point. Drinkability was very good for beer this strong, it went down almost too easily. Overall, an excellent beer. A must try, it's available enough that if it's not on your local shelves, a trade will be easy to set up.

Photo of Bobheed
4.12/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Dark reddish brown, almost like a walnut finish kind of color. Very little tight eggshell white head that dissipated really quickly

S: Lots of tart notes, mainly pinot noir and sour apple. Also got some oak, cherries, vanilla, booze, and some subtle earthy spices.

T: It tastes a bit like Consecration from RR, with a bit more going on. It has the same kind of wine notes, but with more sweetness and alcohol. Got more oak and sweet caramel as it warmed up more and more

M: Fairly low carbonation, medium body and a bit of alcohol heat.

Overall I really liked this one, I can't wait to see what a few years do to my remaining bottles

Photo of mjr2377
4.5/5  rDev +8.2%

Photo of DavoleBomb
3.37/5  rDev -19%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I wrote a damn good review, but then I got asked to sign in after writing it and it was gone. Fuck that. This is a summary of what I had.

Poured into a snifter.

3.5 A: Well hazed plum color. One finger of frothy head. Retention is lacking and a very short ring of lacing is left.

4.0 S: This smells mainly like Dissident. Tons of tart cherries and lactic acid tanginess. The grape component really stand out. Sherry, pinot, and cognac dominate the nose in that order. The bourbon is present, but only if you try really hard to find it. If I didn't know it was in there, I never would have mentioned it. There's some fruitiness underneath, but this is mainly vinous grape-iness and Dissident.

3.0 T: Adam shows up for the first time in the taste. The unrefined, earthy fruitiness is appreciated. Though this still have tart cherry and some lactic acid, the Dissident is a rather small component of the taste. The grape barrels, however, are still holding strong and you can taste each of their contributions. The bourbon is also a little stronger, but for the most part it seems out of place. Oak, vanilla, and some tannic astringency. The rest is a jumble of fruits, caramel, and spiciness. Most of this falls beneath the grape barrels to play a secondary role.

3.0 M: Lighter medium to medium body. Good moderate carbonation. The thing I don't like about the mouthfeel is the almost puckering tannic astringency and the lasting sherry and cognac aftertaste.

3.5 D: Interesting experiment, but it's a baffling combo of brews and barrels. It's like a overly creative homebrewer was calling the shots. It's not bad, but it's far too pricey and the flavors don't work all that well together.

Photo of cvm4
4.2/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a deep amber almost to the point of going toward brownish. One finger head that's off-white.

S - Tart/sour... Cherries and bourbon barrel aged. Comes off sweet, dark fruits.

T - Sour cherry and Pinot Noir really comes to the forefront here. Some dark fruits emerge. Finishes with a bourbon barrel flavor and some noticeable alcohol.

M - Smooth but almost syrupy. Could be heavier or have more carbonation.

O - Grateful I got to try such a unique offering! It's not something I'd reach for every day or every week. But, it's a nice collaborative effort and that's what makes it great!

Photo of jaasen64
4.32/5  rDev +3.8%
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.

Photo of WYVYRN527
4.75/5  rDev +14.2%

Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
4.75/5  rDev +14.2%

Photo of cooler4life
4.52/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into my trusty Duvel Tulip. Best Before April 2013.

A: The beer is a smoky dark apple cider color. Poured a half finger head that settled rather quickly to a thin off-white ring around the edge of the glass. Even through the murkiness, I can see multiple streams of carbonation racing to the top.

S: Fantastically intense. Tart apple cider, cherries mixed with oak, moss, whisky, toffee. As I inhale deeper, an influx of fruit surges down my nostrils. Green apple, more cherry and grapefruit dominate.

T: Begins with a funky cherry tartness that is intertwined with smoky vanilla. Complex. Leather and some hops play into the game as well. Finishes bourbony sweet with just a touch of the alcoholic heat. Note: For a brew coming in at almost 12% ABV, it's really pretty drinkable.

M: Smmoooth! I was expecting it to be a little more viscous, however, it coats your mouth with a tart syrupy wooden goodness. Could use a tad more carbonation, but I'm not complaining :)

O: I was pleasantly surprised by how good this beer turned out to be. I got too excited with the July 4th festivities to properly cellar this beer, but I have no doubt that it could mature to even more greatness. This brew is not for the faint of heart. With every sip I picked up on different nuances hence the 5.0 overall rating. This beer is like a journey, who wants to join me?

Conflux No. 1 (Collage) from Deschutes Brewery
93 out of 100 based on 766 ratings.