Siamese Twin Ale | Uncommon Brewers

124 Reviews
Siamese Twin AleSiamese Twin Ale

Brewed by:
Uncommon Brewers
California, United States

Style: Dubbel

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by illidurit on 07-26-2008

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Reviews: 124 | Ratings: 236
Photo of woodychandler
4.77/5  rDev +31.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The CAN quest rolls on from SF! Bro. Woody, the Beer Monk, totally dug this at The Monk's Kettle.

The server brought out a big-ass can which was then poured into a long-stemmed goblet producing a finger of pinkish head with low retention. Its color was a deep-purplish red like beet juice. Yow! What had I gotten myself into? The CAN mentioned tht it was brewed with Kaffir lime leaves, lemongrass, and coriander. The lime was the winner, having a huge presence on the nose. Well, give it up for the lemongrass, also since the citrus scent was phenomenal. The mouthfeel was medium with a slightly tart/ citrusy flavor on the tongue. The ABV was well hidden as the beer was so smooth as to render the alcohol content unnoticable. Zounds! This could really knock one's dick in the dirt, if you were not careful. The finish gave way to the peppery coriander, making for a very dry finish. I also liked that it was Certified Organic.

Beach/Shore: This or Ten Fidy? Each are going to do some damage, but here you have a fighting chance, plus the taste is probably going to have a wider appeal than a RIS. I still say that Mama's Little Yella Pils is the best CANdidate, but this could certainly be afforded some cooler space. Best case scenario - my cousin CANs Sculpin and you blend the two in a recyclable cup. The tropical flavors might be enough to give you an apoplectic fit.

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Photo of bret27
4.62/5  rDev +27.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Smell: So much going on! Malty, fruity yeastiness (dried apples, prunes), spicy, lime.

Appearance: Deep amber hue, hazy, creamy head w/a little belgian lacing.

Taste: Very complex. Fruit and spicy up front, citrus, floral notes, coriander.

Mouthfeel/aftertaste: Fruity w/a little tiny alcohol burn in the end. Full malty mouthfeel. Fruity and spicy aftertaste lingering.

Overall: Very impressed. So drinkable for a dubbel and 8.5% alc. I originally tried this beer a year or so when it first came out in the area. Wasn't too impressed, seemed a little funky, spicy, unrefined at the time. Heard it had changed a bit since conception, so decided to give it another go and rate it. Unbelievably good. A lot going on. Santa Cruz is known for surf, hippies, and liberals but the microbrewery dept. has been lacking. I predict these guys will change that if they keep moving in this direction. I also hope they will start putting out more cans of their lineup, as this is the only one I think they are canning at this point. A couple other choices locally on tap, but that's about it at this point. Look out for these fella's.

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Photo of Beerenauslese
4.5/5  rDev +24%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is the first double I ever poured from a can. And it is delightful.

A: Good head, with Belgian lacing on the glass. A translucent chocolate brown.

S: Tropical fruits of all kinds, chocolate, spice cake.

T: A light tropical taste, with lime and coriander being the main ingredients and really come through. Stylistically, I'd say it is like a tripel due to the fruitiness and sweetness, but then you have the dark malt and the coffee and chocolate going too. So I'd say it's a hybrid double/tripel. Taking coriander to the heights, now I really get a sense of what coriander can taste like in a beer. As I linger over this, I am getting all kinds of tropical fruit salad, butterscotch, and coffee.

M: Light mouthfeel, coats all areas equally well, and the cilantro really leaves a lingering zip on the top of the tongue, while the chocolate flavors seem to jump around then settle under the tongue.

D: This is really an experience. One will probably do me fine in an evening because of the explosion of flavors as well as the alcohol (8.5% ABV).

This is an exciting, uncommon beer from Uncommon Brewers, certified organic, with locally sourced ingredients from the Santa Cruz, CA area. I look forward to more innovations from this brewer.

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Photo of ghostwalker
4.42/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

An extra from the clean-up session of the EBF last winter. Thanks!

Nice appearance. Brown body with a respectable finger of tan head.

Nose is sweet, heavy, spice and citrus. Complex and intriguing.

Flavor is rich and spicy dubbel, with a finish of interesting and challenging extras. Coriander I definitely get, the Thai contributions are a bit masked to me, but still very tasty and interesting.

Mouthfeel is slick and rich with a zip on the finish. A mouthfull indeed.

Overall rating is quite high. I love that this beer of such high complexity is available in a can.

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Photo of GabrielM
4.4/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Shared from a generous trader in the Nice Cans II BIF - thanks!
Poured into a snifter.

A - deep caramel color with nice 1-inch white head and nice lacing.

S - citrus, orange, coriander, bread, wheat grass.

T - semi-sweet fruit upfront, a slight lemony tartness on the back of the palate.

M - outstanding! Very smooth, perfectly carbonated, feels wonderful on the palate from start to finish.

D - really damn good beer and not a trace of alcohol. The only thing that might prevent me from having more than one or two in a row is the fruity sweetness - it may get to be too much. However, the one (and only) I have is going to be very much enjoyed.

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Photo of indiapaleale
4.35/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Siamese Twin pours a murky brownish/orangish/rubyish color, its sort of viscous which is a sign of that high alcohol percentage. It slightly resembles an unfiltered fresh apple cider. The head is pretty thing with lots of little tiny bubble uniting to form a half-inch layer of stark white foam. When held to the light this one glows brightly and looks absolutely delicious.

Wow, the aroma of this beer is pretty insane. Its a lot of sweet fruit initially (apples, pears) but there is also some watermelon perhaps a bit of that kaffir lime adding a citrus note. Its a very aromatic beer that is truly inviting.

A nice big sip. Lots of flavor complexity. There is definitely the dark fruit that you get with a Belgian dubbel or quad, the apples, pears, prunes etc...but along comes a lime/citrus bitterness in the finish. Its an interesting mix of flavors, one that I can't say I've really experienced in a beer before. Its very refreshing and the high ABV really isn't noticeable. Its just about the perfect beer for 10:30 on a very hot and humid night here in New England. I am truly impressed.

Siamese Twin is truly an "uncommon" beer and that is what makes it so great. I truly wish I had a few more of these as I am absolutely loving it.

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Photo of Offa
4.35/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a very flavourful and interesting dubbel, if somewhat sweet.

Red brown, it has a big pale tan head, slightly orangish, that shrinks slowly to a foamy ring and leaves a little bit of lace.

The aroma is citrus (with a specific hint of grapefruit), toasted malt-whole wheat bread, pears, a faint hint of banana, yeast. It smells a lot like an abbey, but different, with more citrus and a definitely stronger range of elements than many.

The taste is very nice, very interesting, with caramelly fruit-whole wheat bread, citrus, rum, spices and raisiny spiciness. It's sweet, zesty, and a bit spicey, but very smooth, with the alcohol warming and not harsh or overpowering. It has a definite abbey/dubbel character, but with a lot of flavour and s lightly different quality to it. It's very nice with quite a lot of flavour. My main complaint is that alone it is a bit too sweet although they suggest pairing it with SE Asian food and I can see how this would work really well.

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Photo of monkeylovebeer
4.32/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Born in the funky beach/college town of Santa Cruz, I wasn't surprised to find that Uncommon's Belgian-style Double had a few tricks up its sleeve. The first thing I noticed, apart from the can, was how thick and opaque this brew pours. Pumpkin-colored with a crazy hop-driven retentive head, the Siamese Twin throws off a nose full of yeast, spices, and a healthy underpinning of hops.

"What we have here is a hoppy Belgian dubbel with Thai spices ... especially coriander," said Nor Cal Bobby Java, without even looking at the can. This tasty treat disappeared from my glass before I could take further notes, always a good sign.

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Photo of ngeunit1
4.32/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a dark mahogany-red with a finger of frothy off-white head. The head fades down at a normal pace leaving behind only a touch of lace.

S - Aroma is a mix of raisin and other sweet dark fruits, coriander, kaffir lime, and lemongrass. There is also some Belgian yeast with some residual and candi sugar and a bit of booze.

T - Starts off with some sweet dark fruits with some raisins with some coriander, kaffir lime, lemongrass, and Belgian yeast. Through the middle, some candi and residual sugars come through with some more spice and a bit of pepper. The finish is a mix of sweet dark fruits and caramel malts with some spice, Belgian yeast, and a bit of booze.

M - Medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation. Feels smooth with a sweet and warming finish.

D - Very drinkable. Nice balance of dark sweet flavors, spices, and body. I like the lemongrass and the kaffir lime.

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Photo of mcallister
4.3/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This thing showed huge carbonation but once that seceded things are very pretty. A deep unfiltered amber color with yeast galore and opaque. Head is yellow thick and chunky with long retention and thick sticky lace. Very nice.

Corriander really shines through the nose with hints of clove and lime. A very yeasty aroma with spicey esters. Hints of lemon and other citrusy fruits and a nice hop character.

I really like this. Reminiscent of a saison from the spicey and yeasty qualites but with the malt backing of a dubbel. Some caramel deep in the middle before the finish with earthy spicey components, nice hop bitterness. More corriander and clove, lemon, lime other citrus flavors. Very Nice and appetizing.

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Photo of Rzzzzz
4.28/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Mission Pizza in Fremont. Served in a chilled pint glass. Great lookin' beer. Amber with a nice sandy colored head which left some impressive lacework down the glass. Aroma is somewhat muted but I'm picking up a little malt, a little banana. Wonderful flavor...big malt, nutty, grainy, nuances of raisin and banana. Medium to full bodied with a smooth mouthfeel. Very well done. Tastes a little stronger than the 8.5 listed here. I would definitely recommend this.

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Photo of CookstLiquor
4.27/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow, what a mouthful of unexpected flavors! This is technically a dubbel, in that it more or less looks like a dubbel--nice ruddy brownish/red color--and is strong like a dubbel. But beyond that, this is an entirely different beast. The nose has recognizable Belgian yeast aromas, but there is a ton of exotic spice in there, as well. The palate is a whole other adventure. The Thai flavors actually work surprisingly well with the Belgian yeast. It's like a ripe, funky, slightly savory tropical fruit salad. Delicious.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.2/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #52 (May 2011):

Canned extreme beer, hell yeah! Dark ruby color, lacing is as good as it gets. Mouthwatering aroma, the lime leaves and lemongrass along with the malt sweetness make for one of the best-smelling beers we’ve seen in a long time. Brawny like a Dubbel, with a hint of broth, which quickly moves to showcase spices of lime leaves and lemongrass; coriander plays second fiddle. Tart bite from the spicing melds well with the malt base. Alcohol jumps on the palate with a sooth- ing warmth. There is a lot of unusual flavor not only for a beer, but for the style; however, it really works here. The result is a very interesting and very drinkable beer. Sometimes it pays to go out on a limb.

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Photo of jondeelee
4.2/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Siamese Twin opens with a strange, fruity aroma that seems part Belgian, with touches of banana and clove, part peppery cocktail, and part fruity wine spritzer. The kaffir limes and lemongrass impart distinct grassy lemon-lime notes, and the coriander lends peppery earthiness, lending touches of loam. The spice additions together give the brew an almost-but-not-quite Dr. Pepper quality, but with far more pepper and vanilla spicing, as well as citrus. The overall effect is alluring, but definitely out of the ordinary, with few "beer" notes present, replaced instead by citrusy, peppery aromas that would almost be more familiar in a light Thai dish.

On the tongue, the beer opens with a mixed profile, part of it the familiar banana-and-clove Belgian, part a mixture of the lime, lemongrass, and peppery coriander, and over all of this, a sugary layer of brown sugar, vanilla, kola nut, and fig, apricot, orange, and white grape fruit esters. Very light touches of wheat toast add earthiness, and a slight tingle, as well as touches of pink grapefruit, speak of decent hop support. The aftertaste is a continuation of the peppery lemongrass, banana, and clove notes, and lingers for a good while. Mouthfeel is medium, and carbonation is medium.

Overall, the beer is quite good, and I was very thankful to find that the strange kaffir lime leaf, lemongrass, and coriander additions worked well with the brew, meshing nicely with the malts and hops and providing new and funky layers of sugar and peppery spice, instead of overwhelming it. Recommended, and excellent light fare for a hot day.

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Photo of JohnnyHopps
4.2/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a can into my trusty snifter, the appearance was a pale golden color with a moderate head erupting toward the top of the glass. The Belgian notes are the most apparent characteristic in the aroma, which gives an understated impression before the taste. The initial taste is somewhat spicy or peppery with notes of corriander and pleasant lime hints that nibble at the sour taste buds on the tongue. Thankfully, the lime is realistic unlike the lime flavoring in certain macrobrews. All of these unusual traits are set against a malty backbone. The unusual flavors in this beer along with a thinner mouthfeel make this beer an odd impression of the style. Yet the complexity of the flavor creates an enjoyable experience.

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Photo of smcolw
4.18/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Large, lumpy head. Surprisingly little lace (a couple of spots). Clear, deep amber color.

Mild, alcohol-ish malt aroma. On the second whiff, I detected some smokiness.

Very smooth beer, reminds me of an aperitif. It's slightly sweet, with very little carbonation (despite the head). There's also a floral fragrance that does NOT come from any hop. Light warming spices like white pepper and chile pepper. There is hop, but only in the swallow, even the aftertaste is malty--lots of caramel. Rich body, like whole milk.

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Photo of BDLbrewster
4.18/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Thank you papollo!

Pours a deep, hazy amber with a red-orange hue. Tiny soda like, fizzy head that fleeted quickly.

Oh, the nose starts off with a rich, sweet lemony, yeasty aroma. Sort of herbal smelling. This is quickly killed with a harsh alcohol odor accompanied by what I think smells like red rope licorice.

The taste overshadows the smell exponentially. Spicy comes to mind first, amazing (can says they use "Thai Spices.") There is also a mellow bite of lime flavor buried under the spice, that struggles to be noticed. Then comes the alcohol warmth, quite strong for 8.5%, but strangely balanced with the malt flavors that rear their head in the aftertaste. Awesome.

Mouthfeel could be better, severely low carbonation. Medium bodied, but the thickness and level of carbonation didn't really mesh for me.

Drinkability is crazy, combining the amazing taste and the alcohol level. This one could make a fool out of any BA. I wish I had more, this is brewery will rock the industry.

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4.13/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 16oz. can into a pint glass

A: Pours a medium hazy copper with a gigantic head of sticky tan foam.

S: Fragrant lime with a background of yeasty bread.

T: This beer's aromas don't do its taste justice. The combination of Coriander, kaffir lime leaves and lemon grass wouldn't seem like they'd incorporate well into a Belgian style but they incorporate themselves wonderfully. It seems each sip reveals a new flavor that the mind scrambles to identify.

M: Medium-heavy with fine carbonation.

D: With flavors this bold, I couldn't see myself throwing back more than a couple of these.

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Photo of TheBlackMallard
4.13/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I decided to open this to drown my sorrows after FrognutUnl didn't accept my IP Relay call.

Extra from Nanoslug. 16oz can from July 23rd 2008.

Pours light hazy brown with a giant creme colored head. Smells of Lemon, Limes, Bananas, Coriander, and Crystal Malt. Tastes the same but with Chocolate. Nice Citrus finish. Very original and interesting. I'm not a huge fan of Coriander, but I'd still definitely recommend this.

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Photo of blackie
4.12/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

single can from Beer Run, Charlottesville

a: served in a lager westmalle chalice, the dubbel is the deep brown color of dried dates, a tight head recedes to leave only a ring around the glass

s: very nice dubbel nose of rich, dark fruit sugars - dates and raisin, toffee malt, complex spice stands out - perhaps its the lime and lemongrass additions that are so intriguing, but they're not immediately evident individually, great use of coriander - very delicate, brushes of vanilla, richly aromatic and very pleasing to take in

m: medium-full body, smooth, carbonation on the lower end of moderate with a slight abrasiveness

t: the flavor hits with rich dried tree fruits and a current of dark sugars, a touch of buttery smoothness, this is where the lime shows the most - as a tart/sour note that lingers far into the finish

o: a high quality base dubbel regardless of the unusual additions - the lemongrass and lime are either so well or so lightly used that it's tough to pick them out, but a nice background contributor, expected a gimmick but found a really nice beer

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Photo of BDTyre
4.07/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark with a very light and porous tan head. Copper with definite brown hints. Spicy malt scent, very little hops. The coriander is noticeable.

The taste is a bit richer, and you can certainly detect lime leaves and the lemongrass. Good malt, candi sugar and even brown sugar in the flavour. Spice finish. Very nice.

Low carb, but a definite impact on the tongue from the ingredients. As per the can, this would go great with a curry.

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Photo of wordemupg
4.06/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

473ml can poured into tulip 26/7/12

A clear dark brownish amber with just a thin cap of beige foam that falls fast and leaves no lace

S licorice, brewers candy, cinnamon, big herbal notes, coriander, clove, I pick up on the lemongrass and lime but its only after I read it on the can. some brown sugar as it warms and no booze at all, smells awesome

T a little booze comes out and its rather spicy but I'm missing much of what I was loving on the nose. not the same complexity as the smell at all but still respectable

M medium bodied with enough carbonation too give it some life, a little heat and a spicy herbal licorice finish that lingers for a very long time

O I liked this one a fair bit, unusual and interesting, a unique attempt on a classic style and it works well for me

some time might make this one even better, I didn't expect much from a Dubbel in a pint can but it worked for me and once again I'm well above the average

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Photo of akorsak
4.05/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A 16 oz can. The Andersons in Toledo.

A: The dubbel is a dark ruby red, pushing the envelope towards brown. Clearly and unabashedly opaque. A white head wasn't that large on pour and left no lacing behind.

S: The dubbel's darker malts and rich candi sugars set the stage nicely. Lemongrass is used sparingly, although cardamom is apparent as well. I didn't think that the dubbel/spice pairng would work but it is quite good. The dubbel aspects dominate but the spices are just below the surface.

T: A darker, sweet dubbel up front, the candi sugars are dark while the malts have caramel and chocolate. Rather than remaining a run of the mill dubbel, the spice profile kicks up during the second half, delivering the lemongrass, cardamom and lime. The lime in particular is a nice citrusy surprise. Unorthodox but quite good.

M: The mouthfeel brings the best of the spices out, lime, lemongrass, and cardamom. The dubbel stands on the opposite end of the spectrum but, very surprisingly, the beer melds the disparate flavors nicely.

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Photo of illidurit
4.04/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

16 ounce can dated May 27, 2008. Poured into a St Bernardus goblet. Translucent, cloudy amber/caramel color with a light tan, centimeter-tall head. The foam fizzles too quickly for a Belgian style ale, and leaves little lacing.

Nice aroma, lots of chewy sweet malt, dark plummy fruit, obvious coriander, and a bright tart lime note that while being a little strong, is an interesting complement.

Maine maple syrup maltiness provides a basis of flavor with accents of banana pith, grass, and a more subdued kaffir lime note. Great job of hiding the alcohol, but the finish is rather short and the complexity in taste is a little low considering the great aroma.

This beer vanishes from the palate very cleanly, its only remnant a pleasant mild warmth in the chest. Both the carbonation and the body could stand to be a little more substantial. Impressive drinkability.

Overall a nice, creative dubbel that has helped to partially restore my faith in the ability of a Santa Cruz brewery to produce good beer.

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Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
4.02/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours out a deep red/brown with about an inch of tan head. The lace is there, but doesn't last long.

Dark fruit (plum, raisin) and pepper start this dubbel off nicely, booze, caramel and spice follow.

At first I think I taste banana bread followed by plum and caramel. Earth, booze and a sweet taste I can't put my finger on show up around the middle (a good sweet). The finish has a little chocolate and dark fruit. A little high on carbonation, but the body is moderately thick, so it still goes down smooth.

Not my favorite, but still very interesting. Uncommon Brewers does an excellent job of putting interesting twists on old styles. Might grab one more for the cellar an rereview later.

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Siamese Twin Ale from Uncommon Brewers
3.63 out of 5 based on 236 ratings.
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