2012 | Arbor Ales

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Brewed by:
Arbor Ales
England, United Kingdom

Style: American Double / Imperial Stout

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.50%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by jazzyjeff13 on 08-09-2012

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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User Reviews
Reviews: 1 | Ratings: 2
Reviews by jazzyjeff13:
Photo of jazzyjeff13
3.76/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thought I should crack something in honour of the Olympics and the UK success so far....

A 330ml bottle with a BB of June 2013. Picked up from Trembling Madness in York. Described on the label as 'Freestyle Fridays #13', an experimental one-off brew celebrating the 2012 Olympics. Apparently created in response to a rumour that Arbor was brewing a 2012 IBU beer; the result is called a double black IPA. Sounds completely over the top!

Poured into a Delirium chalice. Bottle-conditioned. An ultra-black hue, like an event horizon; no light can escape it's depths. Produces a vast head of thick, creamy light-brown foam with amazing stability; this slowly reduces to a thick surface layer. It looks perfect. Aroma of intense roasted malt with notes of coffee, burnt grain, ash, subtle pine, fruity hops, yeast esters and a big whiff of booze. There's a faint spiciness in the background, like cinammon or cloves (though it seems to come from the hops rather than the yeast).

Tastes of unbelievably bitter malt - this has to be the bitterest beer I've ever tried. So intense, it's like chewing on roasted coffee beans! An avalanche of roasted malt with tons of burnt grain and coffee notes. Hints of charcoal and ash. This is backed up by plenty of stewed bittering hops and some subtle pine/fruity hop aroma, along with hints of yeast and a whiff of alcohol. Extremely bitter and astringent upon swallowing - a total palate wipeout. Mouthfeel is velvet smooth and highly astringent, with good body. Mild tingly carbonation adds texture, accompanied by a spicy quality that titillates the tongue. Very dry. Intense bitter aftertaste (surprise!) - coffee, burnt grain, charcoal, roasted malt and stewed hops.

Bam! This one really nukes your tastebuds. I was all set to award it a medal for quality, but the experience has left me cold. It's just too bitter - there's no room to experience the breadth of flavour that might be expected from a black IPA. Other components such as hop aromas or yeast notes are heavily masked. A commendable stand-out effort, but falls short of greatness. '2012' is a take-no-prisoners experience, though not one I'll be repeating. Try it if you want to give your palate a near-death experience.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Kirk
4/5  rDev 0%

2012 from Arbor Ales
3.81 out of 5 based on 2 ratings.
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