Heavy Seas - Plank I - Heavy Seas Beer

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Heavy Seas - Plank IHeavy Seas - Plank I

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BA SCORE
85
very good

54 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

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Reviews: 54
Hads: 91
rAvg: 3.8
pDev: 7.11%
Wants: 2
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Heavy Seas Beer visit their website
Maryland, United States

Style | ABV
Old Ale |  8.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: jsanford on 03-15-2011

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 54 | Hads: 91
Photo of MusicaleMike
2.96/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Grabbed a 22oz bomber bottle from the Foodery. From what I remember hearing about this beer, Clipper City is experimenting with various woods for their "Plank" series. the bottle says that this Old Ale was aged on Poplar wood planks.

Poured into my snifter glass, the beer has an attractive deep ruby color with a tan head that billows up to about one finger thick. While the head does disappear in a minute and leaves no lacing or any trace that it was ever there, the beer still has a nice appearance.

The smell is quite average for the style. Old Ales should have a lot more complexity, especially after being aged on wood, but the aroma here is somewhat lackluster. There is a soft wooden smell, but not one that I am quite used to. I would describe it as more acidic than American Oak. Notes of caramel sit in the background from the sweet malts, but there is no depth here like I said before.

The flavor is similar to the aroma, in that there isn't much going on. In fact, what I believe comes from the wood aging here is a somewhat sour note that leans heavily on the delicate sweet malts. The aftertaste comes through with a bit of toffee, roasty flavor. I have had some excellent examples of English Old Ales, which I find have a deeper malt character that bring out fruitiness all throughout the aroma and flavor, and unfortunately, Plank I has missed the boat, so to speak. The alcohol does a decent job of hiding itself here, so good marks for that.

The mouthfeel is wonderful, full-bodied and soft. The carbonation was kept low, which I liked. Good job all around here. The only room for improvement would be to develop a slicker texture for the beer.

I love the idea of experimenting with wood aging, but one must realize that it will be hit or miss. This isn't a total abomination. Not even close really...I just thought that the base beer didn't really stack up to what I expect from an Old Ale and that it didn't mesh very well with the Poplar wood anyways. I would be interested in trying a vertical of all the different iterations over the years, but other than that, I don't think I will repurchase again. (2,131 characters)

Photo of Georgiabeer
3.12/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I really enjoy old ales, but this one misses the mark a bit- a bit too malty and creamy and a little one dimensional- too sweet. Pours a slightly turgid brown with only a slight head. Smells sweet and malty with a touch of fruitcake and wood. Pleasant enough if a little one-dimensional. Perhaps slightly rummy as well. The taste is more of the same- very smooth, perhaps too much so- I like a little bit of a dry bite in my old ale. Not one of their best efforts. (464 characters)

Photo of HoosierInOhio
3.15/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Dark Brown with red hints, thin head

S - Caramel, roasty, some chocolate and fruitiness.

T - Roasty Caramel and malts, alcohol, and a fruity finish

M - Thin, carbonated

O - Meh, OK, was expecting more, maybe its just not my style. Not sure what I was expecting, wasn't bad just was OK. (293 characters)

Photo of lackenhauser
3.18/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Deep mahogany color with a nice sized head. Strong aroma of a somewhat metallic quality as it is poured from the bottle. Once in the glass there is a deep caramel sweetness going on, somewhat raisen like. Malty enough flavor with a whisper of wood and a hint of smoke. Fairly sweet then fades into a dry finish. Body is rather thin for my liking. Rather ho hum and unispired. Really was looking forward to this, perhaps I had myself psyched up for something else who knows. Lacks the unique wood notes I was expecting. Form your own opinion is all I can say. (558 characters)

Photo of smakawhat
3.2/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

A small two finger caramel and light tan head is made, settles to a slow small collar. Body gives a nice dark red amber brown, kind of mahogany red. Some slight light penetrates giving some chestnut appearances.

Nose is toffee and sticky malts, smells a little oaky but also an interesting kind of balsam like sense, like sawdust.

Taste is quite tannic. A very woody and thin body mixes with a very light malt. Not very rich tasting, and quite thin in the palate and in feel. A prickly carbonation up front at first. Finish is kind of lacking but an almost varnishy quality perpetuates the mouth. Bitter tannic quality lingers, but not boozy.

Overall, it's not quite awful or particulalry bad, but it's not really that great. I could drink worse. However, the Plank II is CONSIDERABLY better. (844 characters)

Photo of cindyjeffsmith
3.33/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

appearance: Dark brown with red highlights.
smell: Not bad just not much happening. I guess the 'plank' addition is meant to be subtle but not getting anything in the nose.
taste: A pleasant taste to be sure and there's a little of the 'plank' aging. Again, understood it's supposed to be subtle but maybe a little too subtle.
overall: A decent brew, not a stand out. (368 characters)

Photo of Chaney
3.36/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: This almost hit the harvest season in term of color scheme.... but not quite. Ruby red-orange color, clear, and with a slight head that quickly died down.

S: Very subtle, but that's the English style for you. Musty, and with mild puffs of butterscotch and candy sugar.

T: On the forefront, I almost tasted bourbon... but then I re-vamped my position. Very oaky and dry on the finish. This made it a bit tough for me in general.

M: Thick, with a slight "gelatin-like" feel. Very mild prickle on the carbonation, and the lacing was non-existent.

O: Dunno. On one hand, I like some of the subtle roasty aspects of this, but I found the finish to be off putting. Not bad, but definitely not great. (701 characters)

Photo of mdfb79
3.38/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a snifter.

a - Pours a very dark brown color with one inch of off white/light tan head and high carbonation evident.

s - Smells of definite wood, toasted malts, caramel malts, burnt notes. Not bad but nothing great; I guess interesting is the best word to describe it. Definitely something different; lots of wood and tooasted/burnt notes.

t - Tastes of wood/oak, toasted malts, light fruity malts, smoke, roadted malts. A bit of a step up from the nose, mainly because of the fruit.

m - Medium body and moderate to high carbonation. A little too carbonated.

o - Overall an interesting beer. Not what I think of at all when I think of an old ale, but I don’t think they were going for something traditional. Lots of wood comes through which was their intention, so I suppose the succeeded. Tough to drink a 22 oz. bottle by yourself. (873 characters)

Photo of DavoleBomb
3.42/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a snifter. Old ale on poplar? Yes, please.

3.5 A: Clear with a deep crimson brown color. Two fingers of creamy tan head. Retention is about average and just the smallest touch of lacing is left.

4.0 S: Very pleasant nose. Dark caramel malts, plum, prune, fig, and date fruitiness, and brown sugar. The poplar isn't as intense as I would have imagined, but it does complement the brew. Sweet, but balanced. Booze is well hidden.

3.0 T: Hmmm. This isn't what I was expecting. The poplar takes control of the brew and adds more astringency that I'd like. In addition, the sweetness perceived in the nose is much reduced in the taste. In any case, this is still tasty, it just doesn't impress much. Underneath the poplar, there is the fruitiness, brown sugar, and caramel found in the nose, but at lower levels of intensity.

3.5 M: Medium body. Good moderate carbonation. A bit creamy, but could be more so. Not bad here.

3.5 D: Interesting experiment, but the base beer couldn't really stand up to the poplar contribution. Still, not bad. (1,052 characters)

Photo of bum732
3.47/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

S: Rich melanoindens, toffee and caramel, a prominent woody component, almost like sawdust. Just a hint of dark fruits.

L: Very dark brown with some red highlights. Off-whie head that dissipates, leaving a ring of foam, almost still looking.

T: Toffee and some wood like qualities. Low woody bitterness leads to some faint dark fruits. Some wood like tannins near the finish.

M: Medium thin mouthfeel, medium low carbonation.

Ok, mouthfeel was a little thin for what i was expecting, but ok for 8% i guess. Fairly meh. (522 characters)

Photo of ShanePB
3.48/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22 ounce bottle, shared by Matt and poured into a tulip glass.

A: Medium to dark copper, rustic mahogany colored body with an off-white, bubbly and creamy head. A nice retention cap forms and does manage to leave behind some minor lacing. There's nothing too much to really fault in the appearance, especially for an Old Ale.

S: Wood, smoked peat, leather, spicy yeast, tobacco, minor oak and a touch of old outdated bourbon. It's very rich, dark and has a lot of qualities you'd expect. It's an eclectic blending of flavors that make sense on the nose, I'm just unsure how this will translate to taste.

T: Tobacco, leather and a certain "meatiness" about the flavor comes through up front. Smoked dark malts are around mid-palate, and into the finish is a decent amount of an alcohol bite. It seems very astringent, with a flavor leaning more towards the bourbon family.

M: Fizzy but still somewhat creamy on the palate. Perhaps it's a bit too watery for what I expect an Old Ale to be, in my opinion. Not too sticky, dry or cloying in any way, just a touch thin.

Eh, this was okay for me. It may be that this isn't my favorite style but I've had other Old Ales that had a completely different flavor profile and qualities that this one didn't seem to have. It wasn't bad by comparison, but certainly isn't something I'd ever need to revisit again. (1,354 characters)

Photo of Thorpe429
3.53/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice reddish-copper color with a thin off-white head. A bit of spotty lacing and a thin collar. The nose carries some nice oaky notes plus a bit of light caramel and toffee. The flavor is a bit plain, mostly focusing on the planks. Can't remember what type of wood they actually are. Flavor is certainly woody. Some semi-sweet bready malt in the background with a touch of caramel and butterscotch. Medium body with some tannins and a slightly-dry finish. Pretty nice beer. (481 characters)

Photo of russwbeck
3.55/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Deep brown pour with a few fingers of white head. Decent amount of lacing.

S: The aroma is full of oak, molasses, and dark fruits. Seems rich and deep.

T: The taste is pretty basic. Old Ale and oak. Sweet, molasses, dark fruit, and oak. Not really anything special, and nothing particularly impressive.

MF: Heavy body, rests creamy on the palate. Low carbonation. Not very drinkable, the oak is just too much. Booze is definitely noted.

O: Disappointed. Not a big fan of oak aged beers, and this was just too bleh. (521 characters)

Photo of rfgetz
3.57/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice mahagonay color with disappointingly tiny tan tinted head for a hang pumped brew. Scent is of caramel with touches of damp wood, peat, vanilla and concentrated citrus. Taste and body are disappointingly thin... Malt forward with some mutyness from the aging process, lightly smoked peat, decently strong citrusy hop profile and vanilla round out the taste. Medium bodied, thin for style and cask presentation. Some good notes but when combined a very weak beer. (474 characters)

Photo of Nugganooch
3.58/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Nice unexpected extra from mdfb79 - Cheers Bro!

Bomber to pint

A: Pours a dark chestnut brown with some lighter edges that sort of redden in the light. Thin body in appearance. Tiny little fizzle of a khaki head dissapeared rather quickly and no lace present. 2nd pour yielded a much frothier head.

S: Aroma has a definite woody nose and is full of deep burnt caramel sugars. Nutty breads and a distinct molasses character.

T: Big earthy flavors overall. Subtle woods and nutty crackerness akin to a brown ale with more of a burnt sugars and molasses twist. Possible use of some treacle here but in low amounts I would say. Dried fruits with a nice bitterness. Not too shabby.

M: Really nice light and creamy mouthfeel with a slight bitterness. Not heavy or lingering at all.

D: Decent drinkability at 8% ABV it is well balanced. Light creamy mouthfeel. Nice little bitterness to it. The wood is upfront but it does not overpower the entire brew.
All in all not a bad ale by any means. (993 characters)

Photo of doughanson78
3.58/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle poured into a Chalice. Thanks to bobpack for this.

A: Very dark amber. One finger light tan head that fades quickly but still leaves a decent lacing.

S: The smell is kind of light but still there. Main aroma is the wood. Some light dark fruits, toasted malts, a touch of leather, and light floral notes.

T: Light butter toffee and caramel upfront. Dark fruits, wood, and a touch of alcohol.

M: Medium body. Lower carbonation. Good creaminess.

O: A bit boozy for 8%. Good start. Would be nice to try this with some age. (535 characters)

Photo of Jadjunk
3.6/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

"PLANK is a series of beers showcasing unique wood aging treatments to add flavor and nuance. Our first offering- PLANK I- features an English Style Olde Ale matured with specially treated Poplar wood planks. Look for a subtle, "roasty" wood character that perfectly complements this estrAARGHdinary ale!" Brewed in the style of an English Old Ale, part of a release series launched in 2011, available in 22 oz. bottles and on limited draft.

Poured from a 22 oz. bottle to a pint glass. Served above 49º Fahrenheit.

(Appearance) Pours a creamy, frothy buttery cream head over a deep maple brown body. Sediment is varied in size but clarity is moderate. Retention is average and lacing is light to none. 3.5

(Smell) Bready caramel, mild biscuity grain and light molasses sweetness with hints of raisin, dates and cassis. Any wood treatment is largely imperceivable at this step. Potency is medium. 3.5

(Taste) Thin, soft caramel grain malt with a moderate sweetness transitions to a plum, raisin and licorice fruit profile on the finish with a mild emphasis on roasted malt, a character absent in the aroma. The poplar wood generates slightly less flavor than I had expected, influencing mostly texture. giving the beer a soft, dry finish. The impact of the poplar wood isn't quite as sharp or profound as oak or ash but I took into consideration the age of the beer as a factor for it's tameness. 3.75

(Mouthfeel) Texture is slick, soft, mildly oily. Carbonation generates a soft fuzziness to the aroma without impacting the body. Body is shy of medium for the style, medium+ overall. Balance is slightly sweet over earthy-woodsy bitter. Alcohol presence is low. 3.5

(Overall) An enjoyable Old Ale with just enough character to keep things interesting and a very high drinkability. The wood treatment does provide a noticeable impact on the texture and some lesser impact on the flavor, although I find that the old ale recipe by itself carries the brunt of the weight of this beer. I haven't tried poplar wood in a beer before but appreciate using lesser-known wood styles for more creative aging. Heavy Seas should keep this series going with more experiments like this. 3.5

Heavy Seas Beer's
Plank I: English Style Olde Ale
3.61/5.00 (2,244 characters)

Photo of Cyberkedi
3.6/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark, semi-transparent, warm chocolate brown with a thick, though not persistent, tan head. The sample I got fizzed quite a bit when I opened the bottle, so be careful! Malty aroma has a strong overtone of brown sugar and caramel as well as a hint of apple brandy. Flavor is malty with a definite brown sugar overtone and caramel, apple and nutty hints. It is slightly, but not cloyingly, sugary sweet. Texture is heavy-bodied and smooth, with just a little tingle, leaving a somewhat sweet finish. (506 characters)

Photo of jlindros
3.7/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Keg @ EBF.

Hazy brown molasses color, light fizzy head.

Nose light barrel, esters, buttered barrel, light diacetyl, brown malts and sugar, toffee, caramel, etc.

Taste sweet, hint of diacetyl, buttery oak, toffee, caramel, molasses, brown sugar, vanilla, and a bit of dark fruits, toasty biscuity malts, and some bitter almost briny earthy hops, and a light booze towards the finish.

Mouth is fuller bodied, decent carb, hint of booze.

overall not bad, a nice old ale with decent malts, hint of dark fruits, lots of buttery oak and toffee flavors which also make me feel there is a hint of diacetyl but not completely sure. (627 characters)

Photo of crusian
3.78/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from awesome girlfriend from a bottle shop in Richmond va.
reviewed on my phone so it is shortened and may have odd autocorrect errors.
Pours a deep rich brown with about a finger of head...
Nose is heavy on the caramel and brown sugar with a hint of over ripe dark fruit or raisin.
The raster is very contrary to the nose. It is very dry and woody. I expect a lot of sweetness, based off the nose, but it is nowhere to be found. If you smell poplar, that taste you imagine is strong. Once you taste this you know what a poplar is. It is quite amazing. this is a very very dry beer... can't say I have had one quite so dry, it is as if the poplar sucked all the moisture out. There is a bit of the caramel on the palate, but it is quite overpowering with the dryness. It really reminds me of a really dry merlot, it just sucks the moisture out of your mouth. I want some water after each sip. (900 characters)

Photo of brentk56
3.8/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours an amber-influenced tawny color with an inch of tan foam; decent retention presages a few shards of lace

Smell The poplar (a combination of cedar and plywood) aspect is dominant; caramel, stone fruit and tobacco elements complete the aromatics

Taste: Caramel and tobacco flavors, up front, with stone fruit, earthy hops and the wood elements bringing up the middle; after the swallow, the woody flavors are dominant, though the fruit and earthy flavors add complexity to the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Interesting concept using the poplar wood, but I am not sure that it makes this an Old Ale nor does it really complement the malts and hops very well (719 characters)

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.8/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle pour at the bottle share held at Chloe's inside Golden Road Brewing in Los Angeles, CA.

Pours a clear dark orange with a foamy khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. There is a slight amount of sediment seen floating in the glass after the pour. Smell is of malt, brown sugar, and caramel aromas. Taste is much the same with a vanilla flavor on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer that tastes better than it smells in my opinion. (692 characters)

Photo of vandemonian
3.82/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Heavy Seas Plank I is a sweet malty a old ale. It was ok.

A: Lovely red colour and a 15 mm head that fades to sparse lacing. 4

S: Malt and dry sawdust with a hint of caramel. 4.5

T: Malty and sweet up front into an alcoholic caramel malt aftertaste. 3.5

M: Thick and reasonably foamy. 4

O: Decent, but a little too much sweetness without anything to compliment it. 3.5 (373 characters)

Photo of PSUDREW
3.82/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: pours a deep burnt amber, browish color. Pours with about 2 knuckles of head, and it looks kind of tannish
S: Wood definitely is there. with some sweet raisin odors & hints of rum. Yeah the alcohol is definitely present in the end
T: Sweeter then expected. There is totally the wood showing up, and there are hints of smoke. Dryer then expected, really. there is some dark fruit in there, maybe a smidge of carmel
M: medium, on the light side. You could go through this and not be overwhelmed at all. well put together
O: really surprised. This beer was very enjoyable (571 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.83/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap 7/8/2012 at Doherty’s East Ave Irish Pub, in Pawtucket, RI, served in a US pint glass.

A: The beer is a very deep dark brown color, with a light beige head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is faint but contains bourbon, roasted malts, some dark fruit and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out with sweet flavors of chocolate, licorice and dark fruits. Then a hearty roasted malt character comes in. The hops presence is very mild but complementary and provides a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and a little crisp, medium-to-heavy body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, good kick, good representation of style, this is a solid beer to sip on for a long time, but there are better options in the style. (840 characters)

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Heavy Seas - Plank I from Heavy Seas Beer
85 out of 100 based on 54 ratings.