Storm (Islay Whisky Cask Aged IPA) | BrewDog

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Storm (Islay Whisky Cask Aged IPA)Storm (Islay Whisky Cask Aged IPA)

Brewed by:
Scotland, United Kingdom

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.00%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by brewdlyhooked13 on 04-22-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 132 |  Reviews: 97
Photo of DrNo
5/5  rDev +79.2%

Photo of MinorThreat
4.88/5  rDev +74.9%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served from a 12oz bottle.

I should say that I am a huge fan of Ardbeg, Lagavullin and Laphroig so this is right up my alley.

A- Pours rich hazy gold with little head and no lacing.

S- Ardbeg supernova mixed in with some sugary hop water.... Its not a good thing... Its an amazing thing. Depp rich and smokey with tons of peat and a hidden citrus sweetness.

T-Up front it is a nice balanced slightly hoppy IPA with some nice citrus and pine notes. A good sweet malt backbone of toasted cereal grains and caramel honey. Then the back side slides in with a long tarry rope, smokey, peaty tobacco and smoky onslaught. Flat out amazing, maybe the perfect beer....for me at least.

M-The mouth feel is perfect for the beer. Not too much gas so it stays viscous and heavy with just enough Co2 to keep it slightly lively. The thick nature of this beer makes the long finish seem longer and better.

D-High, too high, the highest I can imagine a beer like this have. I love this beer, I could easily drink a few on a session and love every sip.

This is not for everyone. If you love big peat bombs; if Isle of Jura superstition is as light of peating you like in your dram; if you know the Ardbeg line in and out, this is your beer. This is without a doubt my favorite sipping beer, it is the perfect balance of my two favorite drinks. Much Respect....

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Photo of JAHMUR
4.5/5  rDev +61.3%

Photo of frothyhead
4.21/5  rDev +50.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy yellow-amber with some small bubbly off white head into a snifter.

Nose is oakey and boozy with strong notes of single-malt scotch and peat. Some underlying citrus coming through from the IPA base. Alcohol warmth coming through as it warms.

Medium bodied with low carbonation. Feels a little thin.

Taste, like the nose, has a lot of that scotch barrel flavor coming through. Peat smoke and wood. Very earthy. Some caramel malty sweetness up front and bit of bitterness as it goes down. You can just make out some of the citrus hops swirling about underneath it all, which I feel compliments everything else quite well.

Drinkability is good. Relatively light body and lack of any harsh or overly strong flavors allow this to go down pretty smooth.

Overall this is a very interesting and different beer. You can definitely tell that it started out as an IPA. It has a lot of solid hoppy IPA flavor, but it's hidden beneath a layer of peat smoke and oak from the barrel aging. This has a very defining smokey Islay scotch character to it, which sets it apart from a lot of other barrel aged (American bourbon) beers. I'm not a huge Scotch drinker, but having been to Scotland I can appreciate a lot of the aromas and flavors here. It all seems very comforting and familiar. This seems to be getting a lot of relatively bad reviews, but I don't agree at all. Although it's very different and takes a few sips to get used to, I really dig what's going on here. I think the hops and the scotch (hopscotch?!) really compliment each other rather nicely, in fact, and the smokey character is delightful. Well done!

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Photo of Maudite
4.09/5  rDev +46.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

I am a big Islay fan- Laphroaig being my favorite. Heard alot of abd things about this beer- roudy, hard to drink, etc. I found it complex and smooth, albeit lacking much carbonation...

A- Cloudy copper-orange with just a few bubbles of carbonation; no head, but a thin halo around the top of the pour. Like most cask ales, this is an obviously unfiltered offering, excusably cloudy.

S- Initially the smell is dominated by earthiness, peat, wood, whiskey, and mainly near phenolic smoke. As the beer warmed more subtle complexities emerged- vanilla, white pepper, apricot. After sipping and getting into the beer, the smoke dissipated and left just the woody, vanilla, pepper and hints of fruit in the nose.

T- Again, the first several sips were dominated by smoke and wood, as is to be expected. It was not as shocking to my taste buds as I expected from other peoples' reviews. I enjoyed the biting smoke flavor. After drinking for a few minutes, the smoke fades to the background and a caramel-malt, toffee-like flavor comes forward, some vaguely fruity hops in the background and some peppery quality from the wood emerges.

M- Very light, thin mouthfeel, as can be found in most wood-aged beers (save for Imp. stouts). Carbonation is light, almost non-existent, and would be my only complaint. Most cask-ale is fairly light on carbonation, so I looked past it. The smoke lingers in the mouth the first few sips, and the bite of wood and alcohol coats the mouth.

D- Not an every day beer by any means, but definitely something worth trying, and something I will revisit often.

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Photo of prosper
4.07/5  rDev +45.9%
look: 2 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours a very hazy dark yellow. Very low carbonation, no head.

Smell is amazing - peaty scotch, some smokiness, dank hops, musty wood and stick malt sugar, with some hoppy fruitiness. Mouth watering, what an amazing combination.

taste is good too - a little too sweet for me, but the hop/peat/smoke combination really works here - it's hard to explain, but the sharp pungent bitterness of the hops really pairs nicely with the peat and smoke. Slight alcohol warming

Mouthfeel is too big for my tastes, I'd personally make this a 6.0 abv beer instead of 8, and go for as thin a body as I could manage, to accentuate the hops and peat.

Drinkability is good - though you really have to be in the mood for something smoky and bold like this.

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Photo of Daniellobo
4.07/5  rDev +45.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Unusual and pleasing IPA aged in Islay Whisky casks. Actually far more drinkable and subtle than what might have been suggested, but sure enough it is best suited for Islay aficionados.

Presentation: 33 cl brown capped bottle. Standard Brew Dog design with the worn graphics, blue lettering over dark blue. Braggy side narrative goes over main intent, brewing, ingredients, Notes batch 013, best by date ( 02-02-12), and 8% Alc. by Vol. Served in a snifter at cellar temperature.

A - Lightly hazy deep golden pour, short struggling bubbles triy to show some head, fading quickly to leave a minimal surface memory ring, with small touches of lacing. Actually for a cask aged brew it is quite all right.

S - Gently Islay nose: typical smoked, peaty, and salty notes. Sweet fruity hint, less citric sense than what will touch the mouth later.

T - Smooth and soft notes of Islay, peat, weed, a bit salty. The hops are there slightly subdued like a second layer providing a nice soft lemony undertone. A sweet boozy warmth with a hint of caramel under the Islay character picks up the finish rather nicely.

M - Medium body, feeling a bit thinner at times, and with minimal carbonation. At one early point it does not seem so appealing, but as the flavor builds up in the back of the palate, and lingers, it flows remarkably well.

D - Great sipper, soft, long with a nice combination of nuances. Without much of an assertive character, if one enjoys peaty whiskies, how the brew takes a twist to support the range is quite remarkable.

Notes: This might be unfairly derided, at least on this incarnation. Sure enough, it is unusual, and not matching style, which is part of the point. And while some of the criticisms are interesting those that simple showcase the dislike of Islay or Whisky offer a misunderstanding which is a bit poor and lame. It is actually subtle, with plenty of nuances, and sure enough it will disappoint anyone hoping for a pungent DIPA, but the IPA undercurrent actually works well providing surprising undertones. Pricing feels steep but with these barrel agings they typically are... Caol Illa barrels in fact I was told, which I like, but precisely it is one of the most approachable Islays, and I could have done with a bit more character. But overall no complaints.

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Photo of adamette
4.05/5  rDev +45.2%
look: 2 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Live review. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle purchased for $7.99 from Heinen's in Willoughby Hills, Ohio last week into my Murphy's Irish Red pint glass.

A Absolutely no head despite a moderate effort to get one with a vigorous pour. Body is a boring looking translucent orange/light brown. 2.0

S Well thank God we don't just stop at the appearance when we rate beers. What a great smell! There are smoky touches, whiskey notes and a nice malt presence. The smoke I believe predominates as it reminded me of a Rauchbier and I was even reminded of smoked bacon. Great smelling and inviting. 4.5

T Wow...the smell really carries over into the a good way. Smokiness of this beer is so prominent it is a bit too much (like when you are sitting near a campfire and you get blasted with a breeze of hot, pungeant smoke in your face. I also taste the whiskey which to me is not that far removed from the smoky taste. Interesting, big and bold.

M As stated, a huge beer but no carbonation at all. I will take points off for that. I think significant carbonation would compete too much with the taste (that was my problem with other beers that I recently tasted/reviewed) but a nice creamy carbonation would really do this beer well.

D Not all that high due to the big tastes, ABV.

Notes: Certainly an interesting beer. Try this if you love Rauchbiers or huge, bold beers (or both). The whiskey barrel aged aspect really worked.

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Photo of Annesemj
4/5  rDev +43.4%

Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
3.85/5  rDev +38%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz. bottle for $8.99. I could get a 6-pack for that price.

Hazy blonde, light and thin white head kicks around for a long time, settles down fast with good remaining coverage.

The nose is very strange and unique. wine-cork, soft vanilla, tangerine, wet cedar wood, slight cardboard, sugar coated grapefruit & heather honey. The hops give off the fruitiness and the cask aging brings out some of the crazy aroma's like vanilla and cedar wood. i've never smelled another brew like it.

this is a tangy-fruity IPA with a huge amount of cask-aging effects like, vanilla all over the place, oak wood and a decent amount of heat that is reminisant of whiskey. Then a dry, and bitter hop flavor rolls in with acorns and mellowed by the fruitiness of pineapple. sure the flavor is odd, but with it being aged in cask just like a traditional IPA would be i'm enjoing the oddity. This brew makes you think about what's happeing, bonus points for originality. An herbal, slightly bitter hop effect comes back and acidic fruits roll in, cedar, oak is back with a heck of a lot of heat. The vanilla from the barrel aging is a sweet current and a rather smooth effect. The feel is soft and relaxed as it should be after being layed down for a while. no zip, no bite here, it's pretty mellow.

The vanilla and woody aspects makes this one tough to achieve a decent balance, but hey! it's different. complexity is good but it's trade-off with the weirdness.

If you don't mind spending a 6-pack worth of $$$ on a single, i say try it out, you only live once. (on this plane)

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Photo of Suds
3.79/5  rDev +35.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I have to say that I liked this brew. Hazy golden color, quite pale, with an average head. The smell is amazing, however. Lots of peat smoke. It's very reminiscent of a Laphroaig, just toned down a little. The mix of the smoke, combined with citric, grapefruity hops is very interesting. They play off of one anther in a unique and fascinating way. Herbal and malty as well. The flavor has a lot of wood, smoke, and malt in it...more than expected. Some alcohol in the aroma, and it really comes out in the finish. The brew is medium-full in body. Smoke flavors linger long into the finish. If you enjoy peat smoke, this brew is worth a try.

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Photo of omnigrits
3.72/5  rDev +33.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I wasn't sure what to expect with this beer, but what I got isn't like anything I could have imagined.

It pours a hazy golden colour like an unfiltered wheat but a shade or two darker, and with no head whatsoever. The aroma is immediately peaty and oh so redolent of an Islay malt. I like that in a whisky... not so sure about it in a beer. The peat comes through in spades (no pun intended) in the flavour, along with some malty sweetness up front and a nice bitter finish. There are definitely hops in there but the peat overpowers everything. Good mouthfeel, nice carbonation.

The score I give this might end up lower than it really ought to be. It's... an interesting beer. Not one that I could drink all night but worth the occasional purchase. I think a more subtle peat character would be better. More power to BrewDog's elbow for giving it go.

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Photo of indiapaleale
3.65/5  rDev +30.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Storm pours a light amber/golden color that is almost glowing when held to the light. The head it small on this one, akin to those beers with super high alcohol content. Once everything settles down this is a very appealing pour and a beer that begs to be enjoyed (hopefully).

Wow, the nose on this one is SMOKE-Y! Lots of the smoked peaty notes coming from the barrel aging that is for sure. There is some saltiness and some ocean type smells that really set this one apart as one of the most unique beers I've ever smelled. The smokey/peaty whisky smells really dominate and I've not been able to get anything else from the nose.

The taste is...unique. Plenty of smokiness going. Plenty of peatiness going on. Sort of metallic and barbecue-esque as well. There is a sliiiight hint of some citrus and hoppiness in the finish but you need to wade throw quite a bit of smokey whisky flavor to experience it. Very interesting...I like it but I don't love it.

Why a strong IPA? That is my question...a smokey strong porter would be so great! Age a nice hoppy porter in some of these barrels, that would be amazing! The hops in this are so far gone and the smoke just dominates the delicate IPA flavors.

Worth a try just to experience this beer for what it is. This is definitely one of the more interesting beers I've ever had. It is NOT bad by any means, but its almost as if BrewDog just chose the wrong style for the time lets do something darker!

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Photo of Indulgence
3.62/5  rDev +29.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle, batch no. 150, best by date 121209: Great googaly-moogaly... this is scotch beer... I'd swear that I was having a Bruchladdich with water... pour is golden with almost no head after an aggressive spill... taste is pure Islay scotch with all of the sea salt, ocean spray and peat that comes with it, there is a slight background of fruity yeast esters and bittering on the finish... definately not an IPA, but it is extraordinarily unique blonde ale for sure.

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Photo of corby112
3.61/5  rDev +29.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear golden orange/amber color with burnt orange hues when held to a light source with a very thin fizzy white head that quickly dissipates.

Smokey malt aroma with a very prominent whiskey/peat character. Earthy oak in the with slight citrus hops but the nose is overwhelmingly dominated by whiskey. I wish that the hops were more evident but this beer still smells pretty good.

Medium bodied but on the lighter end. Very unique combination of smokey malt, earthy oak, peaty whiskey flavors and citrus/piny hops. Subtle hints of pine needle and lemon/orange peel. Decent amount of alcohol warmth but along with the peat and whiskey it adds to the flavor. Sweet yet dry finish.

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Photo of danielharper
3.55/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours dingy orange/yellow with a nonexistent head. Hazy, almost cloudy appearance. Smells somehow off, lots of wood from the whiskey barrel but without any of the malt or hops that would balance that. Smells much like... scotch.

Flavor is weird. Tastes woody and astringent at first, bitter and unpleasant, but after drinking for a few minutes this gains some complexity. Still lots of smokey wood, but a nice wallop of hops and smoke on the back of the tongue. Finishes very dry and somewhat astringent. No significant carbonation or hoppiness on the tongue, moderate thickness, slightly chewy.

I feel somewhat underqualified to review this beer, to be honest. I've never had an Islay Scotch, so if this is what they taste like then obviously this is within the brewer's intention for the beverage. If so, I think I'd prefer to get the real thing straight up in Scotch form than masquerading as an IPA. In any case, the casual fan of India Pale Ales looking for a hop fix should shy away from this, as it has few if any of the characteristics they're looking for. Worth a shot, though, if only to put it in the "love it or hate it" category.

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Photo of BMoney575
3.54/5  rDev +26.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Sampled on 8-30-09
Batch 13
Best before 2-2-10

Pours a very cloudy yellow color, no head, almost no carbonation at all, and just a hint of lacing. Looks kind of like pee.

Smell is odd, a distinct band-aid quality, and a slight fruitiness. Wood and peat, that's what it is. The dirtiest, earthiest beer I've ever smelled. Very interesting, if not particularly pleasant.

Taste is extreme peat, at an almost disgusting level. Once you get past it though, the bitter hops come through and really create a fascinating beer.

Mouthfeel is almost completely flat, much like a cask beer. Somehow it suits the experience.

Drinkability is poor, the crazy flavor and mouthfeel could be a major turn-off.

Overall, one of the most unique beers I've ever had. Try it if you have the opportunity.

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Photo of tbryan5
3.5/5  rDev +25.4%

Photo of savagepm
3.5/5  rDev +25.4%

Photo of jondeelee
3.49/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Storm opens with a rich whiff of charcoal, ash, heavy wood grains and burnt vanilla that would be more at home coming out of a bottle of scotch whiskey than beer, making immediately obvious the brew’s barrel aging. So heavy is the whiskey overtone at first that the beer itself is almost lost against it, but there are layers of sticky brown sugar, burnt toast crust, brown bread and, just at the edges, a sweet fruit ester rim with tinges of orange, berry, and apricot. After a few moments these sweeter notes become more apparent as the initial shock of whiskey fades slightly. Heavy pine resins from the hops blend well with the whiskey notes and fruits, joined by touches of pink grapefruit and grapefruit rind. As a whole, the nose is excellent, the aromas blending almost perfectly and feeding off one another to produce an alluring and delicious waft of thick, sticky vapor that changes noticeably over the course of only a few minutes, ranging from an initial whiskey blast that almost singes to the nose hairs to a pink grapefruit sweet hop blast after the whiskey dies off.

On the tongue, the beer opens with a huge whiskey blast that sears the tongue and, if you breathe out, the nose as well. The flavors here are huge and definitely geared toward the dark side, with mountains of carbon, charcoal, and ash swamping the landscape, and floating bits of burnt bread, charred vanilla, and tobacco cluttering the shores. So powerful are these barrel aged notes that the beer is almost utterly lost against them, and based on initial flavors alone, a blind taster could easily make the mistake of thinking this to be watered down whiskey. In subsequent sips, as the tongue becomes somewhat more used to the charcoal and ash, a layer of pine resin emerges, joined by berries and oranges that peek their heads up tenuously from behind the trees. The beer also gains a bit more nuance from brown breads and pepper. Still, the whiskey notes are dominant, occupying the larger portion of the aftertaste as well, which lingers in burnt offerings and charcoal on the tongue for a very long time. Mouthfeel is a strange medium-light to medium, given the potency of the flavors, and carbonation is medium-light.

Overall, while I like the beer and want to give it higher ratings, especially since the initial aromas were so enticing, I find the whiskey notes to be simply too overpowering on the tongue, and the beer flavors lost against them. It says much that a beer boasting around 50 IBUs has almost all of those IBUs fade well into the background against an onslaught of whiskey. In fact, the only reason my scores are as high as they are is that I quite like carbon and charcoal notes; otherwise I would have likely failed this brew utterly. So while I appreciate the flavors, I find them overly intense, and have a hard time imagining drinking more than one bottle of this at a time—even halfway through the first bottle, the intense smokiness is powerful enough that I can only take a sip every few minutes.

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Photo of dgilks
3.49/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly hazy, gold colour with absolutely no head.

The aroma is mostly smoky Islay scotch. Peaty with some light sweet malt notes coming through. Definately no hops. Interesting and not unappetising for a scotch lover.

Burning rubber, overdrawn, overroasted coffee. This is really smoky and over done. The smoke overpowers everything. I get just a hint of sweetness on the start and finish to make this drinkable. While I think that Islay whisky should be generally left to the stouts I can sort of get this as I drink more. If I look at this less as barrel aged IPA and more as a Strong Ale I think this sort of works as a form of Islay scotch that I can drink (almost) a pint of.

Medium body with moderate carbonation is fine and works okay.

This is a tough one to judge. I can drink it. Will I buy it again? Probably not. Is it worth the alcohol units? Arguably not. Nonetheless a drinkable beer given the time in Islay casks and if you look at it in the right light.

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Photo of StoneBrewFanatic
3.46/5  rDev +24%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A - Pours a very hazy gold into my pint glass with only a few large bubbles, no real head. Minimal carbonation. No lacing.

S - Aroma is very unique and inviting. If you enjoy scotch that is...
Very peat and smokey, some hops coming though and a bit of sweet malt and citrus.

T - This is a really tough rating for me because I do love scotch and appreciate the fusion of whiskey notes and IPA that has taken place here. With that being said, this has a very unique combination of bitter hops, smokiness, and peat. It almost a little too bitter, but not too surprised from Brewdog.

M - Medium in body, really lacking carbonation which I think could liven this one up a lot.

D - What a surprising brew! But even for the beer lover I can't say this is an easy drinker, but it is a nice sipper. Something really different that in my opinion is totally worth trying.

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Photo of IronDjinn
3.38/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From a 330 ml brown bottle. Bright, translucent honey-like amber in appearance, very brief frothy white head on the pour.

All I can really pick up in the aroma is the smell of peaty whisky, which isn't all that bad as I enjoy the stuff greatly, however it tends to leave a very one-dimensional impression.

Once again, mostly smokey, peaty whiskey in the flavour, while some herbal hops manage to break through in the finish, and struggle to stay on the radar in the aftertaste over the smokey peat. Only when it is practically room temperature does the peat and hops tend to blend amicably in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is on the thin side, not much carbonation.

I give Brewdog credit for the experiment, however at least with this batch the peat is too overpowering to do this IPA any justice for what it potentially may have to offer. If you enjoy smoke and peat then this is right up your alley, otherwise there isn't really anything else being offered.

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Photo of despainmakesbeer
3.38/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very hazy. Pale light, yellowish orange color. No head, no bubbles. Some bright citris in aroma. Aroma very saturated in oak; very clean, almost sterile smelling aroma. Also, pick up some subtle smokiness. Very floral and grassy flavor. Clean oak finish. Moderate carbonation. Comfy fry finish, not overpowering or too dry. Also, citris peel found in lond aftertaste. Not super fruity with citris. Beer grows on me with each drink. Sterility of oak in flavor fades with warmth. With warmth also comes sweeter fruit notes come out, slightly Garbo gummibearish. Almost a belgiany breadiness when much warmer. The dryness of the finish also increases with the warmth. Probably wouldn't buy again unless I got it overseas at the source.

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Photo of HopGoblin
3.37/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours hazy, golden, copper color with very little carbonation. Faint aroma of the sea, peat, and lemons are pleasing of the nose. No trace of hop aroma to be found, if there, they are masked by the whisky cask. Sharp, acidic up front with peaty, iodine, almost salty flavors. Once again the hops aren't there. Very weak and thin on the palate. After on of these I have no desire for more.

IPA and Islay Whisky do not come together well on this brew. Crank up the hops and you might have something.

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Storm (Islay Whisky Cask Aged IPA) from BrewDog
2.79 out of 5 based on 132 ratings.
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