Woodcut No. 1 - Oak Aged Ale
Odell Brewing Company

Woodcut No. 1 - Oak Aged AleWoodcut No. 1 - Oak Aged Ale
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Old Ale
4.15 | pDev: 9.4%
Odell Brewing Company
Colorado, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Woodcut No. 1 - Oak Aged AleWoodcut No. 1 - Oak Aged Ale
Reviews: 46 | Ratings: 69 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of StonedTrippin
StonedTrippin from Colorado

4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

i should say that i get to taste this beer by the amazing generosity of a buddy of mine, who has more patience and cellar ability than i ever would to save this one for so long. amazing to try this one after all this time. the beer has held up expertly well, as promised, and is certainly not on the decline at all, at least i didnt think so. bare minimum oxidation on this. caramel colored brew, with a lot of haze and a mature appearance with some head but not much carbonation really. the nose is more of a memory than anything else. my grandfather used to have this old brass canister with green felt on the inside that he kept walking canes in. there were canes from all over the world in there, all different types of wood, different styles, all very old, all collecting dust, for he did not walk with a cane. i remember being a little kid and my brother and i were fascinated by his canes. we would go over to the canister and look at them all, finally pick one, and not let go of it all day. this beer, honestly, smells exactly like that container of canes. a mix of wood and old people smell, musty, storied. thats what i get form this beer, it takes me to that place. weird how the brain works. anyways. it tastes pretty awesome too. tons of oak on this, i mean a whole ton, its incredible. the malt body has mellowed substantially i think, seems a touch thin now, but has a long finish of wet wood and caramel sweetness. the yeast is all tired out, but still has a cool influence on the flavor, and i bet this was hoppier back in the day, although i dont wish for more hops. its a whole experience, drinking beer this old, hard to compare it to anything, but where it brought me mentally is how i will remember it. i would love to get my hands on numbers two and four, this series is a thing of beauty! so lucky to have tried this.

Dec 11, 2014
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claspada from New Jersey

3.9/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Hand labeled bottle #1780, bottled 08/15/08 signed by the brewer, pretty sweet looking.

Pours a dark amber color with a huge fluffy and sturdy, off-white head on top. Lots of spotty lacing as the head slowly recedes.

The aromas begin with a boat ton of oak, there is a really pleasant sweetness to the aroma. I pick up a fair amount of honey and perhaps some maple as well, along with some caramel and vanilla.

The tastes begin again with the oak and it is a bit more aggressive than the nose. That said, the sweet honey and maple flavors come through and mesh well with the vanilla from the oak and some hints of dark fruits.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with perhaps a bit too much carbonation and a slightly tannic finish. It's hard to enjoy the complex flavor profile with so much bubbly carbonation.

Overall, this was a very good beer. Though the oak is pronounced, but it does not completely dominate the flavor or aromas, which is nice. I wish the carbonation was restrained but that didn't stop me from enjoying it. Not as good as No. 3 but better than No. 4.

Feb 20, 2012
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koopa from New Jersey

4.32/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml bottle #1856 bottled on 8/15/08 and cellared properly by me the entire time!

Appearance: Pours a fairly attractive red stained caramel that is fairly clear. The crown is 2 fingers, off white (slightly cafe latte) with minimal retention and lace.

Smell: Wonderful sweet oak notes over a mixture of toffee and unsweetened caramel. Some nice light pepper like spice notes really add to the experience.

Taste: Same as the nose with minor booze presence and warmth.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with fine carbonation.

Drinkability: Going down fairly easy on this slightly nippy day.

Nov 03, 2011
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trappistlover from Arizona

3.28/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

(sampled at RBWG). Pours a hazy caramel color with off-white head. Aroma has a hard candy aspect with an herbal (spearmint?) note. Taste had a nice sweet malt balkbone. Medium bodied and slick texture. For me, the herbal component was distracting. Thanks to whomever brought this one!!

May 18, 2011
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BeerAdvocate from Massachusetts

4/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine Vol. II Issue IX:

Aged in American medium-toasted oak and released in August 2008, this brew is part of Odell's new barrel aging project of one-time limited brews. We're about to crack open signed bottle No. 166 out of 1,440 (120 cases).

First, that is one hell of a cork. The "pop" was impressive, yielding a hazy, dark amber with tawny hues and a massive beige foam that settles to a nice lace. Aroma is sublime. Raw sugarcane; toffee; big, woody oak; boozy alcohol with peppery notes. The carbonation really creams up on the palate with a prickle that fades into a magnificent, smooth mouthfeel. The body beneath is full, rich and malty. Flavors are insanely complex: almond oil, caramel candies, sweet dried fruits, rock sugar, overripe pineapple, black cherries and vanilla. Alcohol is definitely present, spicy but not overbearing. Lingering caramel, sweetness and peppery alcohol.

If this is the first within the series, we can't wait to meet the rest. Unique, complex and very interesting--just as cellaring this would be.

Sep 20, 2010
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htomsirveaux from Texas

3.92/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

750 mL bottle tried 10 Jul 2009. #1773.

Served in the 0.4 L Steiner Pils snifter. The cork comes out with a big pop. Large very lacy biege head. Medium carbonation. Slightly hazy dark hazelnut color. Raisins, molasses, ethanol and brown sugar in the aroma. Tastes of riasins, some banana, ethanol. Rum and oakiness. Some toffee. Medium sticky body. Oaky dry finish and aftertaste.

Definitely a sipper.

Sep 01, 2010
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BuckeyeNation from Iowa

3.8/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle #1566. Much closer to pomegranate than persimmon, with generous carbonation (at first) thanks to nearly two years of bottle conditioning. The large head is equal parts pale gold and pale orange, has a loose and unsticky texture, and is leaving the chalice almost untouched. A less than wonderful start.

The nose is akin to tart orchard fruit (apricots mostly) dipped in caramel. This stuff smells way too sour to be an old ale. Age might be playing a role, but beer of this style with a double-digit ABV should last at least this long... if not improve with age.

Woodcut No. 1 tastes good at least. Even though the mouthfeel is doing it no favors, it's still successful old ale. Aging it longer than this probably isn't going to add much (and will most likely detract), so drink up if you're sitting on a bottle or two.

The flavor profile is sneakily complex and includes caramel-toffee, brown sugar, apricots, cidery apples, toasted oak and sugared vanilla beans. Looks like Odell kept the beer in the barrels for exactly the right length of time.

Alcohol is not appreciated on the palate, but esophageal and belly warming are obvious evidence of the ABV. This is one of those times when bottle conditioning took too big a bite out of the mouthfeel. It's too thin and lacks volumizing bubbles... once the initial carbonation storm subsides.

Woodcut No. 1 is better beer than the final score will indicate. It still qualifies as a minor disappointment, however. Drinking it within weeks or months of the release might have been a completely different story. Or at least a partially different story. Thanks to the generous JMBSH for a ridiculously expensive extra.

Jun 25, 2010
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JohnGalt1 from Idaho

4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

inflatablechair provided this one at a recent tasting.... Thanks a bunch Sammy... This is one that was for sale online for a long time and I never pulled the trigger.... Appreciated Amigo!

Bottle #1827...8/15/08.

Pours clear amber lite amber with a sorta yellowish tan head... nice retention and lacing.

Nose is caramel with bunches of oak... hints of vanilla from the wood..

Flavor is nice... Mirrors the nose with some mild dried fruits that make me think golden raisins and mild dried sweet cherries.. oak is very present... sorta perfumy as the usual tannic compounds.. something nutty... I am digging the oak as opposed to the normal bourbon barrel brews that are pounding the pavement lately.... body is a perfect medium, so is the carbonation.... I really like this one.. now I wish I had bought some up when I had the chance... stoopid Galt!

I would have a hard time with a 750 of this brew even though I enjoy it... this is a perfect brew to share with a couple of friends and sit back and just let conversation drive the evening.


Thanks again Sam... Good stuff for sure.

May 26, 2010
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womencantsail from California

4.12/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The pour is a dark amber color with a fluffy, yet sturdy, off-white head on top.

S: Despite the very noticeable presence of oak in this beer, there is a really pleasant sweetness to the aroma. I pick up a fair amount of honey and perhaps some maple as well, along with some caramel and vanilla.

T: The oak is a bit more aggressive in terms of the flavor. That said, the sweet honey and maple flavors come through and mesh well with the vanilla from the oak and some hints of dark fruits.

M: A medium bodied beer with perhaps a bit too much carbonation and a slightly tannic finish.

D: This is the only one of the Woodcuts that I've really liked so far. Though the oak is pronounced, it does not completely dominate the flavor or aromas.

Apr 22, 2010
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brdc from Wisconsin

3.45/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Large corked bottle, poured into a snifter.
From notes.

Very nice appearance, reddish brown, tan head, although retention and lacing are subpar.
Aroma has some sweetish malt notes, oak, not much else going.
Flavor is boozy, with some dark fruits, vanilla, bread, faint hoppiness.
Medium body, low carbonation.
I cannot call this an old ale, but I am also not sure what it is.
Not bad, but certainly disappointing.

Apr 10, 2010
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alcstradamus from Iowa

4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle generously opened by brdc. Thanks for this retired gem. Reviewed from notes.

Pours a stunning crimson/brown color with a quickly dying finger of head. The aroma is sweet maltiness and light barrel notes and some candy. The flavor is bready to start, with sweet caramel and candy coming in on the finish. A decent amount of dark fruit as well. In a blind tasting I would definitely classify this as a dopplebock. The body is medium and the carbonation is at low levels but still has a slight sting. At this point in the beer's life, the barrel character is very subtle but the overall beer is still quite nice. I just don't think that the "old ale" classification is correct for it.

Mar 28, 2010
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tpd975 from Florida

4.2/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Traded for this one a couple years ago it seems.

A: Pours a brownish hue with a nice tanish white head. Nice retention and some lace.

S: Aromas of caramel and brown sugar. Light dark fruit notes with a nice fresh cut oak.

T: Nice caramel and brown sugar sweetness. Hints of cherry and more mild dark fruits. Nice oak, vanilla, and light booze from the barrel.

M: Fairly full in body, smooth, nice.

D: Good I really enjoyed this one.

Mar 11, 2010
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brentk56 from North Carolina

4.33/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle #395

Appearance: Pours a hazy tawny color with a massive cap that retains nicely and leaves splashes of lace

Smell: Caramel, oak, vanilla, almonds and dates

Taste: Caramel, almonds and dried fruit, up front, but by mid-palate, the oak and vanilla start to dominate and continue to do so, after the swallow and while the flavor profile, overall, is moderately sweet, the oaky dryness (vaguely sour) in the finish is an excellent touch

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with spritzy carbonation

Drinkability: This is one superb old ale and a year or so of aging has brought the flavors together nicely

Thanks, googzoid10, for the opportunity

Dec 25, 2009
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gford217 from Georgia

4.25/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750mL bottle poured into a tulip.

Pours a hazy caramel brown with orange coming through when held up to the light. There is plenty of carbonation coming out of the bottle and a huge 3-inch creamy beige head that shows excellent retention and actually leaves a hefty cap throughout. Lacing is light.

The oak is really prevalent, surprisingly so, with lots of oaky tannins and vanilla coming through. There are some raisins, molasses, and a big caramel malt sweetness as well. I can't remember a beer smelling so much like wood, clean virgin wood.

The sweetness keeps on coming in the taste, but the initial taste is sweet caramel malts and brown sugar. The oak can't be held back for long though and the finish is just full of oaky tannins, vanilla and even a hint of woody spiciness.

The mouthfeel is extremely creamy with the wood imparting a wonderful smoothness that turns into a dry spicy feel on the palate. The carbonation is strong which keeps the full body from becoming too heavy.

I'm definitely impressed with this beer which is one of the better use of barrels I've tried in a while. The fresh oak really makes this one unique and all of the sweetness comes together very well without becoming cloying. Very good.

Sep 21, 2009
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joe1510 from Illinois

4.28/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4


Thanks to two great trading partners for these bottles, BitterBill and russpowell, thank you! This old ale looks a little overcarbed on the pour with a billowing three finger beige head on a soft pour. The head settles extremely slow to a thick cap and leaves chunky, sticky lacing strewn down the glass. The body is a surprisingly clear caramel with numerous ruby red highlights. Woodcut 1 is a mighty fine looking brew.

The nose is chock full of goodness. Strong virgin oak is the first thing leaping from the glass with all sorts of complex sweetness. Big notes of caramel converge with toffee, brown sugar and coconut. The oak is a major contributor adding a great spicy character with green wood and rich vanilla. This is one big ol' beer with a lot of deep complex aromas.

The taste brings out even more complex barrel notes. Coconut and a big splash of vanilla have their fingerprints all over this old ale and are perfectly integrated. The maltiness character shows a lot of depth. Brown sugar and big, deeply caramelized grains make up the base while both nuttiness and a mild roast tip toe along minding their business. The virgin oak tastes a little green and adds another element that I haven't really come across much in the past. As this beer warms an orchard fruitiness comes forward that's rather impressive.

The mouthfeel really shines. I was afraid the over carbonation would make for too frothy a beer in turn making it too light for the style; instead it's full bodied with an incredibly velvety texture. There's not a trace of booze to be found.

The big flavors and abv make this a sipper. I could easily see myself polishing off a bottle over an evening.

I'm glad I got the chance to try this beer. It's drinking fantastically well at the moment. If you have one in the cellar pull that bad boy out and crack it open, it's time. Thanks for the bottles, guys!

Aug 31, 2009
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pokesbeerdude from Colorado

4.54/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'd been saving this one to try after its first birthday, although the temptation was pretty great to trade it away. Purchased from West Vail Liquor Mart, Vail, CO.

Bottle No. 899 from 8/15/08, signed by the man himself Doug Odell

A: Murky brown in color with a huge billowing off white head, a gentle pour yielded a good three inches worth of dense bubbles. Excellent sticky lacing. Impressive head retention as well. Quite nice looking.

S: Immensely complex, hard to place, smells unlike any beer I've beer around. Slightly sour, with hints at molasses, maple syrup, rich malty profile, but a definite woodyness to it as well. Fresh cut hardwood underlies all of the malt, and yet there is a sort of citrus-perfume like quality, definitely not a hop profile, but sort of a melange of wood and sweets to make everything blend together into something lovely. This is delicious smelling, almost perfume like. I can't get enough of that smell. I wanna live in this.

T: Well definitely an oak aged beer, and the fresh wood carries over from the nose. has a definite apple flavor, more like a caramel apple flavor, to it as well. Caramel and molasses are both there, and even some faint maple syrup hints. Not quite as flavorful as the smell would lead on, but still impressive. For being over 10% there is no noticeable alcohol. As it warms the apple flavor gets a little stronger, and a little more bitterness emerges, slightly earthy, but still dominated by the fresh wood. Not too shabby, rather impressive actually.

M: Surprisingly light in the mouth, low carbonation, but a definite bite from the beer's flavors. Insanely dry, this one really dries out the mouth.

D: Almost too easy to drink for being a rare beer. I'm impressed, and glad I could discipline myself enough to let this one age. Easy drinking, huge, and a lot of time and care was put into this beer. Excellent beer all the way around. Highly recommended if you can find it!

Aug 22, 2009
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waltonc from California

4.5/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Deep garnet/brown color with a tad of haze, puffy white head that's over an inch at first.
S: lots of oak, toffee, malt.
T: More oak, toffee, apple, light raisin and dark fruits, sugar. Can't detect any hops.
M: Medium body with high carbonation that lightens the mouthfeel and makes this very enjoyable.
D: Fantastic beer. I look forward to trying Woodcut 2.

Jun 20, 2009
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coldmeat23 from Oklahoma

4.68/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

GLASS: Snifter
TEMP: Cellared @ approx 45 degrees
BOTTLE NO. 729 DATE 8/15/08

This pours a dark copper color with bright ruby highlights. It has a massive four-finger plus head of loose, off-white foam. Retention is excellent. Lacing is thick and curtain-like and very sticky.
This is beautiful.

Man, this is the most oak that I think I've ever smelled in a beer! It is powerful! I'm also getting dark cherries. Caramel malts, light vanilla and a touch of booziness.

Huge oak flavor mixed with biscuits and toast. A jam made from dark fruits. Cherries again, but with blackberries and boysenberries, among others that I can't quite grasp. Much better vanilla presence that there was in the nose. Very nice apple flavors blend with butterey caramel. A nice level of warming spiciness.
This one has a taste that is very remeniscent of a finely made whiskey. Excellent.
Very complex, yet thoroughly enjoyable.

This one has a nice medium body. I would have personally preferred it to be a touch more on the 'thick' side. It's definitely smooth, though. The carbonation level is way too high, IMO. I find it to be somewhat distracting from my total enjoyment of this brew.
Tone down the carbonation and 'thicken-up' the body a touch and this would be a deliciously creamy beast of a beer.

It's hard to believe that this one is 10.6%ABV. It's deliciously smooth and easy to drink. I'd love to have a case, or more, of these to store and enjoy from time to time.
Very well done, O'dell's. Again.

Jun 15, 2009
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SpruceFish from Washington

4.32/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bottle 1864 bottled on 8/15/08

A- cloudy ruby with a huge off white head white a little lacing

S- huge oak presence vanilla some tannins and some carmel

T- oak vanilla carmel tannins i kinda feel like im drinking a 2x4 and i love it this is the most woody and delicious beer i have had

M- kinda sticky i guess great carbonation

D- great no alcohol presence at the ten months of did this beer well

Jun 02, 2009
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rye726 from Colorado

4.51/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a rich, woody brown with a big tan head. Settles to a nice silky cover with a bit of lace. Nose is a bit hoppy for an old ale, but other than that it is quite nice. Caramel malts, ripe fruit, vanilla, oak and sweet alcohols. Taste is more on point for the style. Big bready malts, carmelized candy, cherries, plums, spicy booze, oak, quiet floral hops and vanilla. Medium to full body is a little over carbonated and takes some time to settle down. Great barrel aged beer. Complex, yet well balanced.

May 28, 2009
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wagenvolks from Texas

4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to the BA who brought this to the May Austin tasting.

Pours an amber-toffee body, producing a tall custard head that leaves great looking lacing along the inside of my glass. Nice, fragrant aroma of rye, tobacco, molasses, white pepper, floral hops, and oak. Very enticing.

Flavor is a delicious blend of caramel-toffee malts, leafy hops, and a vinous oaken finish. Chewy-thick body with a creamy consistency and a hint of spicy bitterness from the wood on the finish. Overall, a very nice Old Ale, but I'm not sure if its a great candidate for aging. The oak-aging is subtle and so is the 10.6% ABV. Still, Odell's rarely disappoints and their Woodcut #1 is no exception.

May 06, 2009
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srandycarter from California

4.05/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It is ALL about wood here. That is the thread.

A - Huge pop, tons of head, leaves slowly. Murky dark orange brown. Small bubbled tight lacing.

S - Woood. Some malt, and more wooood.

T - Definite tannins, caramel, sweet candy interlaced. Finish does not end clean, but very woody.

M - Medium body VERY carbonated, maybe too much, affects coating, but might be too cloying otherwise.

D - Big, palate killer.

May 05, 2009
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FtownThrowDown from Ohio

4.37/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown in color with some ruby highlights. Very nice two inches of head forms on the pour. Actually there's a bit too much head here. The head sticks around for the enitirety. Very pillowy and leaves foam all over the inside of the glass. Smell is all vanilla, oak and some malt. I've smelt this beer for five minutes without even taking a sip. More oak and vanilla in the flavor. This is absolutely amazing in taste. Very creamy and smooth. Good amount of carbonation. Absolutely no sign of the alcohol in the flavor at all. Very good beer.

Apr 02, 2009
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RedHaze from Nebraska

4.03/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle #1479, signed by the brewer. Served just below cellar temp.

Pours a slight;y red tinged brown with a dense three fingers worth of foam. The lacing nearly completely covers the inside of the glass. Very impressive.

Smell; as expected this has a very strong oak aroma, and comes off slightly perfumey. Caramel and brown sugar give a sweetness to the aroma, followed by cherries and vanilla. There's a hint of lighter fruits in the background, along the lines of grapes or green apples.

Taste; the fruits are a bit more pronounced in the falvor than they were in the aroma. Grapes, apples and cherries, give way to brown sugar and caramel. Then the vanilla and oak take over and give the finish a bit of a dry finish. The alcohol is very well hidden, mostly coming through as a warming in the back of the throat.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, and while the head lasts for a very long time, the carbonation is fairly smooth and biting. Drinkability is good, especially with the 10+% alcohol. Very good beer, but I hope Odell can manage to bring down the price point of the next Woddcut beers.

Mar 02, 2009
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Zorro from California

3.94/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Wow this thing was pricey, $24.99 for the bottle, #1184 bottled 8-15-08.

Chill hazed deep amber colored beer verging on reddish brown in color. Small head forms and dies back to a tan ring.

Smell is sweet and strong with vanilla and oak aromas. Smells a great deal like a Bourbon barreled beer, undoubtedly the oak was charred to develop the vanilla aroma. Caramel apple and grape make up the rest of the aroma.

The taste starts out slightly sweet with a good vanilla and whiskey flavor. Strong vanilla and wood flavors and fainter toffee and apple flavors. Quite warming in the chest but doesn't really taste like an 11% beer.

Mouthfeel is thick.

Not a bad beer at all, though for the price I am more likely to find a more local strong ale.

Jan 08, 2009
Woodcut No. 1 - Oak Aged Ale from Odell Brewing Company
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 69 ratings