Melange No. 3 | The Bruery

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Melange No. 3Melange No. 3
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
The Bruery
California, United States | website

Style: American Strong Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 15.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
A blend of Black Tuesday, anniversary ale, and White Oak Sap.

Added by Floydster on 02-14-2009

BEER STATS
Reviews:
258
Ratings:
1,820
Avg:
4.35
pDev:
9.43%
 
 
Wants:
842
Gots:
752
For Trade:
87
User Reviews
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Reviews: 258 | Ratings: 1,820
Photo of DefenCorps
4.49/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from bardwashrind. Thank you, Andre, both for the trade and a fun afternoon drinking at The Falling Rock!

They say that when all you have is a hammer, all your problems start resembling nails. Right now, all I have at home (apart from a couple of gueuzes) are some ginormous beers from the Bruery and FiftyFifty. This makes these beers seem like appropriate summer beers. Strangely, though, this beer doesn't look like one. It's a mildly muddy, ruddy brown with a dense, light brown head that rises briefly before falling off to a ring, leaving little lacing in my Great Divide tulip. The nose is rather excellent, just what I was hoping for. Significantly better than the kegged version I had at Monk's a year back, this is immediately dominated by a blend of brown sugar, toffee, leather and bourbon. Moderately fruity with port-soaked raisins, vanilla sugar, a definite woody, oaky character and maybe some molasses? The alcohol is remarkably well-hidden. To some extent, there's a red grape character as well, which brings to mind brandy.

The palate opens with not nearly as deft a touch, with a strong, boozy heat immediately noticeable. Immediately after is the remarkable sweetness that this beer has.The Papier/Coton contribution is most noticeable with the big bourbon along with the brown sugar and vanilla making this rather decadent. The BT adds a layer of cocoa and chocolate to the palate. And then, there's the raisin and grape character that lends a definite brandy note to the palate. The toffee character does lend a lightness to the palate, a mild boozy beer. Medium-full in body with soft carbonation, this beer has a boozy finish with a blend of bourbon, brandy and brown sugar. Excellent stuff, though I have to admit that it will take me 3 nights to finish this damn bottle.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
4.32/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

On tap at the 2011 RS party. Lighter than BT, a light brown, deep caramel color. Aroma was very much vanilla, super reminiscient of BT.

The % of BT in this beer really dominated the taste profile, I didn't taste much, if any of the other beers. The tree sap and/or white oak came in soft. Maybe a little more dark sugar and fruit feel to it, but it was barely above negligible. Drinkable enough, was smooth, probably hid its alcohol slightly better than BT, which is saying quite a bit.

The BT and Coton parts just dominate this beer, the white oak doesn't come across as much as I'd hoped. But with so much BT, its a damn good beer, and somehow hid the Coton heat more than Coton itself, maybe that's the role the white oak beer played in this one, other than the slight wood feel to it, but that could have been from the others too.

Toffee and caramel just all over this one.

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Photo of Stevedore
4.4/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

75cl bottle bought to a recent tasting by Doug and Shaun. Poured into an unlabeled snifter 8/31/2013.

This beer pours a thick dark brown body, with minimal white head and retention. Looks rather viscous, but otherwise looks like any other barrel-aged barleywine (even though this is most certainly not a barleywine).

The smell on this is just awesome. Up front, I can smell that bourbon heat! And then there is that strong aspect that reminds me of white chocolate, but not quite- I don't get as intense of a vanilla scent in the nose like I did in the actual WC.. but its a very sweet, vanilla coconut scent that is cut rather well by the chocolatey flavour which I imagine is the BT contribution. There is a nice caramel, perhaps toffee contribution in the nose which is probably from the Anniversary ales. Very pungent, complex and fascinating nose.

The flavour profile is also very complex. I get less of the bourbon and quite a bit more of the toffee, caramel flavours that cut the white oak sap contribution's straight up vanilla/coconut sweetness by quite a bit to make it a more interesting, varied experience. There is less of the bourbon flavour, but the aftertaste is definitely a BT contribution. I don't know how else to describe this beer, but it is an absolute treat.

Definitely a big bodied beer, OK carbonation, and a small bit of heat. But nothing indicates to me that this is a 15% ABV beer. Nothing. It's smooth yet is absolutely a sipper. But extremely flavourful and creamy.

This beer is an absolute treat. Would definitely recommend sharing one bottle with friends, preferably friends you like! Very interesting, complex and big beer. Typical of the Bruery's best offerings.

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Photo of claspada
4.05/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly muddy dark brown color with some reddish highlights and a thin layer of tan head that immediately dissipates. Big time Alcohol lacing left on the glass.

Aromas are super sweet with plenty caramel and dark fruit notes with a touch of chocolate. The bourbon really comes through providing lots of vanilla and a bit of oak. I am searching for more of the Black Tuesday and/or White Oak, but only finding large quantities of the syrupy Papier.

The tastes begin quite sweet as well with sweet caramel and vanilla dominating with just a touch of chocolate to it. As it warms the bourbon and alcohol flavors come through, but even at such a high ABV, it's not all that hot.

The mouthfeel is on the med-heavy to heavy with minimal carbonation. The finish is super chewy and bordering on syrupy sweet.

Overall I enjoyed the small quantity of his beer that I sampled (around 6 oz) and frankly that is all you need. It is really really sweet and would be a task to consume in large doses. I wish there was more of a Black Tuesday and or White Oak presence to balance the super sweet Papier. It's just really not that complex for the rarity/cost it takes to acquire.

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Photo of dgilks
4.5/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hazy brown-amber colour with some foamy tan head. Nice lacing.

Sweet chocolate and fruit. Caramel. Oak. Bourbon. Candy. Just awesome.

Oak and bourbon dominate this thing. Tons of malt. Toffee. Fruit. More barrel. Chocolate. This is just amazing.

Medium-full body with moderately-high carbonation. Beautiful.

A delicious beer. The combination of caramel and fruit just works. Lots of barrel and spiritous goodness. Nice.

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Photo of mltobin
4.33/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

750mL bottle split with a few friends, poured into a wine glass.

Appearance is mahogany with just some light lacing to it. This strong ale has a nose of licorice, bourbon, vanilla and roasted malts. A serious beer, which I sip slowly and taste dark fruit, toffee, more bourbon and some coffee. Mouthfeel is kind of heavy, with a good amount of alcohol presence, but a nice amount of carbonation to. This beer drinks nicely, but is certainly meant for smaller portions consumed over time.

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Photo of jrallen34
3.38/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Another AgentZero tasting.

750ml bottle into my Orval glass...Pours a dark brown, dark amber highlights. Light tan head rises about a finger, gone right away, light lacing...The aroma is so boring. I just drank the ba coton and I'm confused that its the same beer. Light vanilla, bourbon, alcohol. When the bottle says made with out anniversary ales I know they refer to the Coton...The taste is sweet alcohol. I can't believe black tuesday is even in here. No stoutness anywhere. Mostly just an ale that was laced with vanilla and bourbon...Feel is light, not easy to drink, way to alcoholic.

Big, huge, disappointment here.

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Photo of Jwale73
4.27/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to jedwards for sharing. This beer has been a long-time want (and thanks to Callmecoon for sending a long a bottle in the Movie Night Part II BIF - definitely plan on cellaring this). Pours a brownish-amber with no head and no residual foam. Nose expresses cocoa, molasses and a suggestion of booze. Taste reveals toffee and cocoa notes - I'm definitely getting the wheat wine and stout characteristics here; however, the old ale qualities aren't really popping. That said, the sugary sweetness of this beer practically makes my teeth hurt. Mouthfeel is medium in body with just a kiss of carbonation. Overall, this beer is fantastically complex and decadent. A small pour definitely goes a long way.

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Photo of maximum12
4.92/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to dbhog for sharing his allotment with me. I've had sips of this beer at a couple of tastings & couldn't wait to have a full pour. Well, half-pour at least, if I cracked this open without my wife she'd shiv me in my sleep. Kidding! I think. 22 oz. bottle.

Pour is black with a bit of pop on top, more than I'd expect from a brew this big & dark. The smell rolls the instant the wax is breached - wow. Massive bourbon & vanilla fringle with chocolate & sweet fruits. Yumza.

Melange No. 3 is just sublime. Hot alcohol seems appropriate rather than daunting & is right up front. Huge whiskey presence with attendant vanilla. Sweetness has a gravitas that mocks lesser beers attempts at killing diabetics. The Papier is distinct in the middle, dark hard fruits & more sweetness, here molasses & brown sugar. Toffee. Malts. Jeeeesus, so much going on. The ending is hot alcohol & more whiskey. Despite the ABV & the ridiculous, over-the-top shit going on here, I could easily take a bomber by myself. And probably will the next time my wife is out of town. Shhhh. Don't tell her.

This is easily a top-shelf beer & possibly one of my favorites of all time. Just beautiful. I could drink this every night.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.32/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

750 ml bottle poured into a plastic cup at the Central Waters 13th Anniversary party. My one and only tick for the evening started quite early.

Thanks to BALcstradamus for sharing this one with us! I was a day away from sampling it at the Bruery during one of their parties and always wanted to get a sip.

A - Clear dark brown with a dense tan head. Low retention from high alcohol but nice lace is left behind on the cup.

S - Rich, thick aroma of smooth vanilla and bourbon with chocolate and roasted malt. Mmmm.

S - Rich, thick bourbon is hot with chocolate roasted malts and molasses with cocoa and a mocha finish. Absolutely delicious!

T - Smooth but syrupy with a hot alcohol finish and low carbonation.

D - If I had a bottle of this I wouldn't open it around any less than three other guys, if not more, much like Adam did. This beer's booze level just begs to cause trouble for those partaking.

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Photo of Rutager
4.59/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2011 bottle

Appearance. Pours a murky deep brown with a little rust and a thin, light tan head.

Smell. Wow! Big sweet bourbon, some caramel candy, a little bit of coffee, molasses and chocolate. Smells pretty awesome.

Taste. Oh man. Sweet bourbon and chocolate. Just a ton of both!! Some nice caramel and toffee with a little creamy sweet coffee and toasted wood. Fucking incredible.

Mouthfeel. Full body, but not in any way thick or syrupy. Does that even make sense? Lets say it defys the laws of physics. Medium carbonation.

Overall. Good lord, this is just packed with flavour. All good stuff too. Wishing I hadn't traded away my other bottle now!!

Edit: I can't believe I drank that whole thing myself. Yikes. I'll be enlising some help the next time I crack something like this...

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Photo of rodbeermunch
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours out a ruddy brown, all those caramel and toffee notes apparent in the color, thin beige head 1/5". Aroma was lots of toffee, vanilla, caramel, barrel, brown and chocolate malts but with enough sweetness that the heat nor roastiness comes out on the nose.

Black Tuesday dominates the profile, lots of sweet chocolatey booze in this one, like drinking a liquid cracker jack of 15% proportions. Dark sugar. The waves of toffee and caramel keep on keepin' on. Goes BT, Anniversary beer, then the white sap in order of dominance of the flavors. Its a really good, often overlooked beer, really fun when you have a few friends to share it with, cracked quite a few of these over the years, often once the co-main event fight gets going, that's the time for this one.

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Photo of Resuin
4.46/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 750 mL bottle into a teku glass. This is a 2012 version.

Appearance: Pours a dark brown with a reddish hue and leaves about a finger of off-white, light tan head.

Smell: Bourbon, hint of cherry, plum, vanilla, raisins, figs, cocoa. Solid aroma.

Taste: Matches the nose nicely: bourbon, vanilla, plums, oak, cherries, molasses. Plenty of alcohol present. Very sweet.

Mouth-feel: Medium to low carbonation (solid for this beer) with a medium, creamy body (a bit syrupy).

Overall: A solid BIG brew. Very, very sweet but this one has some nice flavors: the vanilla, oak and dark fruits play together nicely. Perhaps a tad hot, but tasty nonetheless.

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Photo of papat444
4.25/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Big thanks to F2brewers for this one. ***2013 Vintage***

***My 1000th review on BA***

Decent small head with a dark leather brown body, aroma is of sweet bourbon. Taste is deep; brown sugar, caramel, strong maple tones. Almost no carbonation which kills the mood a bit but overall very enjoyable nonetheless.

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Photo of FLima
4.31/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Brown color with a thick tan head with short retention.
Elegant aroma with notes of bourbon, oak, coconut and oak.
Sweet, intense and delicious flavor with notes of bourbon, chocolate, vanilla, caramels, some dark fruits and cherries. Dry, sweet and roasted aftertaste.
Full liquorish body with appropriate carbonation. Incredible how they hide its 15% abv.
They performed well this blend. It is a concentrate of roasted and bourbon flavors. It is sure sweet, which is a characteristic of their brand, but it is one of the few exceptions I applause.

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Photo of cosmicevan
4.47/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

despite a few reviewers saying that taking this on alone was a mistake, i've been thinking about popping one of these for the past week or two...and tonight, well...why not? poured into a bruery snifter.

a - brew poured a soft purple that settled into the glass much darker and ominous. my hard pour yielded a generous cream colored head that slowly fizzled down to a thin skin on the surface of the glass with some nice bubbling. swirling the glass leaves some boozy slime, but no real sign of lacing. looks more old ale than any of the others in the blend.

s - WOWIE ZOWIE! black tuesday shines through. some grape and old ale characteristics as well, but having tried chocolate rain last night, that black tuesday base is still fresh in my head and i immediately noticed it here. really nice caramel smells as well with a hint of vanilla too...the chocolateness of BT works well with this. what a wonderful smelling blend.

t - cherries and figs with a wash of booze. caramel is strong and drives the sweetness with some vanilla on the tail. a dessert beer and a treat. really impressive blend. the old ale seems more dominant in the flavor, but BT is there as well. syrupy and strong. the 15.5 is hardly noticeable in my opinion, but to say that this isn't a huge beer would be a huge lie. delicious. i am VERY impressed.

m - smooth and rich. bold and flavorful. leaves a boozy tingle, but doesn't feel 15.5% by any stretch. really easy drinker for such a big beer. the sweetness isn't as intense as i had expected.

o - overall, not sad that i took this on by myself at all. loving every sip. in fact, my wife took a sip and really dug it and she grabbed a glass, so not such a solo effort. gotta give the bruery credit...created a huge beer that both my wife and i can dig. my wife normally runs from barrel aged. kudos on a job well done and psyched to have a few more of these.

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Photo of thagr81us
4.62/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served from tap into a Bruery sampler imperial pint glass at the Reserve Society Party. Poured a deep dark brown with a minimal tan head. Maintained decent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, chocolate, vanilla, and maple syrup. The flavor was of sweet malt, chocolate, vanilla, and cream. It had a heavy feel on the palate with low carbonation. Overall impression... Effing wow! This brew was just plain excellent in all aspects. The flavor was more toward the sweet side without being overly sweet. The 17% ABV was NOWHERE to be found... This one is a must try without any doubt and I'm definitely glad I got to try it...

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Photo of AgentZero
3.13/5  rDev -28%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Drank at a tasting with jrallen34.

A - Dark brown, mahogany in color, with lighter brown on the edges. A little bit of stick on the sides.

S - This smells a lot like a muted version of the BA Coton. Smaller bourbon smell then I was expecting. I was hoping this was more Black Tuesday like. Some vanilla, dark fruit , and some brown sugar. Not bad, but not great.

T - Once again, was hoping for some more of the Black Tuesday than was in here. This tastes a hell of a lot like the BA Coten. Brown sugar, figs, vanilla, a lot of caramel. I get some licorice on the end of this. Honestly, this is okay, but nothing special, not sure why it is rated so high. Somewhat sweet, could use some more barrel influence.

M - Under carbonated, full bodied.

D - Hard to get down, too sweet, too much alcohol. This is a good, but not great beer. Don't care if I ever have this again.

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Photo of scottfrie
4.47/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle brought to a tasting by the generous beddachedda. Thanks for sharing Evan. 2009.

A: Pours a hazy dark dark brown with a thin fuzzy tan head that left spotty lacing.
S: Big notes of alcohol, chocolate, caramel, raisin, oak and vanilla.
T: Warming alcohol, raisins, chocolate, bourbon, oak and vanilla just like the nose. It’s sweet, and a bit fruity. I can definitely taste the BT.
M: Warm, full body, but the alcohol is actually super mellow for being so crazy high. Thick mouthfeel.
O: Tastes a lot like a BT with a few thing other nascence’s added in. It’s really complex and amazingly smooth. Thanks again for opening this, Evan.

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Photo of gford217
4.3/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark, dark brown that's pretty close to black in the glass underneath an impressive frothy tan head that recedes quickly leaving a thick collar and lots of boozy legs on the sides.

Whoa, the aroma is big and crazy sweet. There's a dominant rum-soaked dark fruit sweetness with some toffee and molasses. The other major aroma is the barrel which imparts a vanilla sweetness and bourbon on top of that.

The taste is more of the same but with a bit more of the bourbon coming out, especially in the finish which leaves an alcohol burn after each sip. Of course, the sugary malts, dark fruits, chocolate and tobacco underpin the barrel. Big flavors.

The mouthfeel is medium to full bodied and seriously boozy on the palate with spicy oak as well.

This is a definitely dessert beer, quite a sipper. The massive bourbon presence and sweetness definitely limit the drinkability but it's what I've come to expect with the big Bruery beers.

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Photo of Dope
4.38/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a murky dark reddish-brown. Medium sized fizzy light brown head. Head fades quickly with essentially zero lacing. Decent retention.

S: Big, huge, enormous and bold caramel notes. Strong bourbon and caramel malt both. Sweet, sweet, sweet and boozy. Strong oak with touches of vanilla. Dark fruits meld in nicely, a little cherry and a lot of raisin. Wonderful strong aroma.

T: Huge bourbon notes with sweet, sweet caramel and loaded with molasses. Unbelievably sweet, to the point of cloying for sure. Heavy raisins mixes in with the caramel and molasses. Just a smidgeon of chocolate fudge, primarily in the middle and getting a little more bitter into the finish. Pure boozy bourbon and oaky vanilla in the lingering aftertaste. This is one huge, boozy and sweet beer. Make no mistake.

M: Heavy, thick, viscous, over the top sweet and cloying.

O: This is one serious beer. Reminds me a lot of regular black tuesday but with less roasted malt. Huge sweet notes from the bourbon and from the heavy malts of all the blends. One of the biggest, nastiest black and tans I've ever laid eyes on. Given the blend, more like a black and ...dark brown. And dark brown. This one is a sipper, given the sweetness, the heaviness and the ABV. Packaging this in a 750ml seems ludicrous to me, but I will do my best to soldier through it.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
3.92/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter. Big thanks to Callmecoon for this. 2011 vintage I presume.

4.0 A: Black color in the glass, but it didn't look so dark during the pour. Oh well. Two fingers of beige frothy head. Retention is very good given the ABV, but nothing is left with regard to lacing.

4.5 S: Intensely sweet with huge dollops of caramel, toffee, and molasses. Lots of oak and vanilla in this. Leathery bourbon booziness. Fair amount of chocolate and dark fruits with emphasis on prune and fig. The aromas from the base beers blend quite well together.

3.5 T: Again, intensely sweet. The decision to drink this alone was a bad one, but I will persist. Anyway, this reminds me a lot of straight up Black Tuesday in that the sweetness goes unchecked and the booze is almost as bad. However, both the sweetness and booze are a little lower in magnitude. Anyway, a lot of caramel, toffee, molasses again. Chocolate, fig, plum, prune, melon, vanilla, and oak. Leathery bourbon, brown sugar, butterscotch. Huge all around.

4.0 M: Syruppy heavy body. Good moderate carbonation. Velvety creaminess. The only problem is the amylase coagulation that is going on.

4.0 D: An intense beer. I got through the whole bottle and it wasn't so bad. Yes, the sweetness is trying, but the flavor profile is pretty good.

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Photo of francisweizen
4.86/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I had this on tap in Manhattan when the bruery were first making their push into the city.

I had it on tap in a small 6oz wine glass at Rattle & Hum.

This is a dark flat beer that looks like sherry in the glass. No head, no lacing, no nothing.

The aroma is phenomenal, like the Angels Share if it were somehow more concentrated and better.

The taste is perfect, booze, oak, vanilla, toffee, caramel, etc, etc. I could go on for hours, there were so many many flavor notes in this beer that it is obscene.

Mouthfeel was creamy thick and coating but not cloying at all.

I could not believe that this stuff was 15%, I could drink it all day long.

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Photo of Domvan
4.66/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Wow, if you like Black Tuesday, this beer is for you. The dark thick pour and richness from black tuesday was all evident. White oak sap and some of the anniversary beers available before 2013 were also mixed in. This sweet mix of booze is a great beer and should definitely be shared.

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Photo of jrenihan
4.15/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer is very dark in colour, but not quite black. Seems to be a very dark brown, with slight reddish hints. A small beige head, fades quickly.

Nose is big, complex and nice. Bourbon, oak, vanilla, caramel and booze are all strong. Coconut. Some chocolate.

Taste is similar to the nose, but there is a big dark fruit component that I did not get in the smell. Cherry comes to mind. Other than that, lots of bourbon, oak, vanilla. Caramel is strong, and there is also brown sugar and molasses. A LOT of alcohol heat. One heavy beer. A very nice flavour, but a bit over the top.

Full bodied, low to moderate carbonation. Big and heavy, lots of burn. Slick.

Overall, quite good, but too extreme. I am sure this beer would have been more enjoyable at a comparatively moderate 12% or so. Very nice but hard going.

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Melange No. 3 from The Bruery
96 out of 100 based on 258 ratings.
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