Allagash Odyssey | Allagash Brewing Company

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BA SCORE
94
outstanding
419 Reviews
Allagash OdysseyAllagash Odyssey
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Allagash Brewing Company
Maine, United States | website

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Allagash Odyssey is a dark wheat beer aged for ten months, a portion in oak barrels and the remainder in stainless tanks. The recipe includes 2-row barley, malted wheat, a generous amount of roasted barley and Belgian candi sugar. This deep brown beer boasts an aroma of black treacle and raisin. The flavor hints at dates, with a mildly roasted finish imparted by aging in both medium and heavy toast American Oak barrels. The finish is dry, punctuated by vanilla.

Added by Todd on 01-30-2005

BEER STATS
Reviews:
419
Ratings:
1,226
Avg:
4.25
pDev:
15.76%
 
 
Wants:
333
Gots:
249
For Trade:
18
User Reviews
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Reviews: 419 | Ratings: 1,226
Photo of jwc215
3.48/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

bottled in October, 2006 - poured into a glass chalice.

Pours very dark brown. The thin head soon becomes patchy.

The smell is winey/vinuous. Grapey with sugar candy sweetness. Subtle hints of oak.

The taste is of sugar candy, grapey wine, and vanilla. Sharp alcohol notes that smooth out over time.

The feel is creamy. A bit too light at first, but gains more of a body as it warms.

This one is different - I'll give it that. For me though, it's too sweet and wine-like.

Edit: Bottled in Jan. 08 - reviewed in Sept. 08:

Adjusted scores by .5 higher on all but drinkability.

It does have some chocolate notes that I picked up this time to add to complexitity. Body is still creamy, but yet sharp. Alcohol sharpness, oak/vanilla and vinuous (with some sourish grapey notes), in a red wine way, dominate. An interesting brew - a slow sipper. I enjoyed this bottle more than I did the first one I reveiwed. I noticed a few more subtlties and some more creaminess, but still not overly thrilled.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4.36/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into an Allagash chalice. Bottled February 2011.

Appearance - Deep brown body with flecks of reddish hues. Barely transparent at the edges. Huge khaki head. Four fingers. Excellent retention and lacing. Looks spectacular, especially for a 10.3% ABV beer.

Smell - Rich caramel. A smokey presence as well that gives the caramel a surprising complexity. A bit of a cola aroma and just a hint of fruitiness behind all of it.

Taste - Deeper and richer caramel than the aroma. Diminished cola presence and nowhere near as sweet as I expected. The smokey character rounds out the flavor with a touch of char and oak that blends everything nicely.

Mouthfeel - Not thick, but definitely not dry, as I had expected from a BSDA. Creamy but remarkably easy to drink. No hint of booze.

Overall - Beautifully crafted beer. Incredible flavors and a perfect mouthfeel. This could stand up to some of the best Belgian darks.

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

Suited for adventure: husky brown, crimson highlights, cocoa head, a classic countenance, sets the mind in anticipation and the imagination loose.
whiskey screams from the nose, escaped from the bottle and ready to let fly with it's fury...rich malt and alcohol at the helm, steering us into the situation...prune, oak, raisin, plum are at guard on the side. what first stung now seems mellow, even sweet. Glorious.
Bold entrance on the palate, the rich, roasty, lush and fruity flavor floods the gates, and breaks down the door. Bourbon-y feel dominates the mouthfeel.
Other associations beckon forth...dark rum, molasses, slick, yet leathery...berries and grapes, the darker kind, come to match the onslaught of the whiskey.
Medium bodied,yet full with flavor, an relenting river of taste washes up and out with every swallow.
Finish is rather dry, just a touch sweet. Like any good drama.
The rush has been resolved, the quarrel abated, and the goals have been met: satisfaction sits in the glass, and a happy smile on the face of the drinker. We've gone to a wonderful place, throught the vessel that is this bottle, and it's noble contents, and come back better, stronger, wiser, even.
Can beer do that?
It already did.
May the force be with you.

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Photo of johnnnniee
4.25/5  rDev 0%

On tap at Cask and Vine with Mr Barleywine.
Dark brown in color with a smallish tan head. Rich sweet brown sugar with huge prune, raisin and date like aromas. Rich sweet maltiness balanced with a touch of alcohol. Beautiful sipper!

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Photo of MasterSki
3.98/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Sheffield's last night for Phil's going away party. Served in a tulip glass.

A - Pours with a nice one-plus fingers of tan foam. Excellent retention that eventually gives way to a thick cap and ring and leaves plenty of attractive lacing. Body is a dark, dark brown color with slight transparency at the fringes of the glass.

S - This is reminiscent of a dark wheat/dunkelweizen, but on 'roids. Malted wheat, cloves, cocoa, candi sugar, as well as spicy, fruity, and rummy esters. Not picking up much of the barrel character - either it's very well integrated or very light. Very subtle and nuanced, and takes a while to warm up

T - Sweet caramel malts, a bit of sharp wheat, cocoa, light nuttiness, and a touch of toasted oak. Less clove and spice than in the nose. Again, it's very much like an imperial dunkelweizen with a touch of barrel. Booze is more mellow in the flavor than in the aroma.

M - Viscous, chewy, smooth, medium-full body. Nice soft, but still present, carbonation. Not overly hot in the finish. A little bit sticky, but not excessively so.

D - This is a slow sipper, and a brew where I'd be happy with only one glass. It's very rich and nuanced, and as such demands a lot of engagement from the drinker. Also, while well-crafted, this particular collection of flavors doesn't personally speak to me - I like a little more roast and dark fruits in my BSDAs (a la The Viking or Rochefort 8).

I'm guessing the keg at the party was an earlier vintage, as there wasn't much of the barrel flavor noted by many other reviewers. It took about half a glass before I started to perceive appreciable oakiness. I'd be curious about comparing my experience to that from a fresh bottle.

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Photo of tdm168
4.23/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to jtd1969 for sharing this bottle.

A - dark brown with a soft, thick, white head that has little retention

S - the nose was a little faint; dark fruit and clove

T - oak, woody, vanilla, dark fruit, burnt sugar, molasses, mild bitter finish, spicy alcohol

M - warm, full bodied, crisp

This was fantastic. The oak came through and really complimented the base beer. The alcohol is noticeable, but it's spicy and plays well with the yeast and malt. This was a great beer from start to finish.

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Photo of AlexFields
4.54/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark, thick wooden mahogany color, hazy and complex, with a very elegant and even dark creamy head. Looks wonderful, reminds me of really nice furniture.

Smells of grape, dark chocolate, dark wheaty bread, yeast, and wood. Very nice aroma, and complex. Sweet raisin starts to emerge too as it warms a little.

Taste is fantastic. Like a super dark loaf of rich whole wheat bread, with raisins and nuts and dark chocolate. Spices and yeast too, subtle vanilla and oak. This is just amazingly elegant and perfect.

Mouthfeel is really thick and rich and elegant, perfectly carbonated and drinks just right.

This is a damn good beer, haven't had anything quite like it. Complex, rich, elegant, well balanced and ultimately unique. Wish I had a case of this to see how it ages.

9.3/10

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Photo of smakawhat
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into my tulip glass. Bottled Feb 2011 so off we go!

Dark cocoa light cocoa head off the pour with lots of staying power. Some of the bubbles are quite soapy looking and large others not so. A body of super dark red almost black in appearance. Leaves a good puck throughout drinking all the time.

Bouquet fells incredibly mellow and soft. Mellow malt, chewy yeast, dark powdered unsweetened cocoa all play along. Real good aromatics on this, not overpowering either, so pleasant feeling. Hints of pralines and caramel, it's so soft, it's like ah.. puffy clouds!

Upon tasting it feels like scotch ale is coming thick and beautiful, then some small fizzy carbonation and taste of mellowed out dark fruit (raisins/dates dried fig) comes in. This feels like some sort of crazy scotch ale Belgian dark hybrid and I LIKE IT! Drying palate on the swallow, high abv is not noticeable. Dense and light as well.

I was getting a little worried about Allagash, I had many of their beers both on bottle and tap and they were always disappointing me. I was beginning to think they couldn't make good Belgian styles. In a way they did better, they made something that is truly their own.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.75/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

At the time of this review, this is the #4 beer on the "Top Beers - Belgian Strong Dark Ale" list on beeradvocate.com. Served in a snifter.

Beer is dark brown, hazy, thin lazy head of tan bubbles, minimal lacing and carbonation.

Aroma is sweet, a little oaky / woody, some yeast. Malt.

Beer is lighter in body than expected, strong throughout though. The oakiness adds a sort of bitterness almost like a hop at the end of the palate, this beer is fine but not good enough for the cost in my opinion.

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Photo of Billolick
4.7/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

large bottle, caged and corked, dated, numbered, the works. Simply stated this has got to be one of the best brews on the planet. Large, flavorful, strong, complex. Tons of wood, figs, raisins, rum.Words cannot do justice to this flavorful tipple. Get a few bottles, put em away for about 5 years and enjoy, or crack em open tonight and savor this nectar. One of the best brews I've ever had the priviledge of drinking.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled in Feb 2013. Poured in a nonic, the beer is a vibrant, dark, amber-brown coloring with a thin, light, off-white head that remains low and tight to the surface. A steady flow of small, tight carbonation throughout the body of the brew. This looks tasty. Aromas of rich, dark sweetness in the background, including dates and raisins. A subtle grain overlay on the nose balances, with some nut sweetness revealing, also. Flavors are bold and smooth initially, with a blast of rich, old world fruit sweetness (date and fig) followed by a grainy and toasted wheat character that brings a touch of sharpness and cleanliness to the palate. Very balanced. The more you drink, the more you can pull from the palate, with some tart grape sweetness and hints of smoke and char. The dynamics of the flavors keep the elevated ABV from being blatantly recognizable, but there is a subtle warmth that builds as you drink. Nutty and sweet aftertaste, with a decent linger to it, leading to a slow, light, and slightly sweet finish. This is a great beer.

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Photo of BeerForMuscle
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - A dark pour the tone of prune juice, with a soft fizzy head, fading to a clear lace ring.

S - Fall/winter spice cake with alcohol soaked in, or even alcohol soaked fruit inside. Molasses and nutmeg muffins with hints of cocoa. Sweet syruppy fruit, akin to fruit cake.

T - The flavor follows up the nose, giving tastes of sweet spice muffins and fruitcake. Rum raisins, pumpernickel bread, dry biscuits. There is tangy, yeasty quality to it too. Molasses, tongue numbing clove, and a dry wine barrel aftertaste. Dry, chewy grains in the background paired with a sweet, warming alcohol.

M - Very, very smooth and drinkable. The 10.3 abv is blended and smoothed over in each sip. The carbonation is just enough to hang in with this abv, and there is a numbing clove oil effect thats kind of nice. The mouth is left with a smooth, semi sweet, semi dry wine aftermath.

O - One of my favorite styles of beer, Allagash hit a homerun here. Strong flavors with smooth effects. Well melded and complex.

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Photo of GClarkage
4.44/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

07/25/06- Received in a trade with Jetsbeer.

Presentation- 750ml bottle, caged and corked. Bottled in February 2005. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Sort of a peat colored pour. Darker than brown, but lighter than black with a kinda dark green glow. Different to be sure. Full 3/4 inch head...settles in with a nice bit less than 1/4 inch frothy remaining head. Lacing it streaky and spotty.

Smell- Wonderful vinous oak barrel scent...especially as it warms. Made the mistake of drinking most of this at a lower than desired temperature. Lots of creamy caramel scent in the malt. One of the few beers that I enjoyed smelling more than I did consuming.

Taste- Rich and dark caramel malt with a quite large woody and oaky flavor. Much more than the Cruiex. Even a nice hoppy aftertaste. Licroice or anise flavor kicks in after the swallow. A few prunes, raisins and plums tossed in for good measure...maybe a bit bready as well.

Mouthfeel- A bit to carbonated for the style in my opinion. Because of the oaky qualities I would expect more of an old ale texture...instead it's pretty highly carbonated, even after sitting in the glass for an hour. Won't knock it down too much though.

Drinkability- Overall a very quality brew with a fabulous scent and great flavor. This one will be interesting to taste 5 years down the line....if I only had a bottle...sob :(

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Photo of vfgccp
4.55/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Dec 2011 bottle opened May 2013.

A - Beautiful looking brew. Dark walnut body with ice tea and cranberry highlights. Fluffy off-white head with poor lace and ok retention.

S - Dark grains, toasted Eggo waffles, maple syrup, toasted marshmallows, booze.

T - Oak, honey, toasted coconut, rye bread crust, caramel, toasted whole wheat, vanilla, almond, tiramisu. Complex with great integration, and not overly sweet.

M - Medium frame. Nice smoothness.

O - The beer really opens up close to room temperature. Great balance and complexity.

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Photo of WesWes
4.47/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a translucent dark brown color with a thick frothy tan head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is awesome. It has a wicked malty scent that boasts of roasted and crystal malts along with a deep whiskey aroma. There is quite a bit of warmth and complexity in the aroma. The taste is great. It has a warming whiskey flavor that is complimented with a complex malt bill. It's roasted and full of Belgian crystal malts; very tastey. The mouthfeel is near perfect. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a damn good beer. The whiskey barrel storage is a great idea. It really adds a whole new flavor to an already solid brew.

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Photo of Mora2000
4.37/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark brown to black with a cream-colored head. The aroma is awesome with Belgian yeast, malt and some chocolate. The flavor is roasted malt, yeast, oak and some chocolate and alcohol. I may also get some vanilla, but it is faint if it is there. Medium-thick, creamy mouthfeel with low carbonation. A great beer.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
4.2/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Review from 5/2010 notes. Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours a dark orange brown. Medium tan head with good retention and lacing. Aroma of caramel malt, dark fruit and light oak. Unusual flavor of caramel malt, dark fruit, wood, and an odd astringent bitterness up front. Caramel and wood middle and finish with the same light bitterness. The bitter spicing and high alcohol make it appear somewhat medicinal, but this is very complex and well balanced. Medium bodied with some creaminess. A nice, very interesting take on a Belgian dark. Expensive, but worth it for the experience.

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Photo of BARFLYB
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On Tap at The hulmeville Inn, served in a big ass goblet. I've been avoiding this beer for years and I don't quite know why?

Odyssey is a dark ass wheat beer looking pretty black yet comes off tree bark brown with a nice pretty off white/cream colored inch of foam that had some stickage on the glass, kinda coating. Great retention.

Smell is not very pungent, yet very rich and straight forward. Roasty/toasty malt, with a yeasty vibe and oak I guess, I did not really pick up on it, truthfully. Some earthy scents, a dark wheat beer is not to far off, something from bavaria maybe? I can't descrie it, rich though.

Taste is killer, it's so smooth, it's not really hot at all. I heard stories of hotness, but not here, just a hit. Dark wheat up front mixing in with light cocco and deep toasted malt, not really roasty. Oak is very minimal, but Ithink the blend of 1/2 oak, 1/2 stainless really smooths this sucka out. Id imagine this would be quite hot out of a fresh bottle.

like said, smooth, rich and decadent. I lied, there is a bit of heat after extreme warming but it is a afterthought with all this flava. Carb is minimal, but what's there keeps shit together.

Overall, I gotta try this again, cause im pissed I passed this up for so long. On tap this is a must for me now, alcohol be damned.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.63/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks goes out to jwc215 for this brew.

750ml Bottle
Caged/Corked
Bottled: Jan 08

Poured into my St. Bernardus Watou glass a very very nice brown color, very nice carbonation, awesome thick/creamy one-finger plus off-white head, tons of thick/creamy sticky lacing left behind. Then nose is malty, with some yeast, plums, figs, and raisins, very nice notes of Oak. The taste is sweet, malty, yeasty, with some nice dark fruit tones, and with notes of Oak. Full body, the alcohol is hidden very well. Very drinkable, this is an awesome brew, Allagash did a fabulous job with this one, highly recommended. Thanks Joe.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.78/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

February 2005 Bottling, Sampled January 2006
Pours quite dark, as I am pouring it, it shows a deep amber-brown color that is pretty clear. The beer sits a dark espresso color and is topped by frothy tan colored head that is initially two-fingers thick. As I pour this beer I immediately get notes of oak and alcohol mixed together. The oak is definitely the dominant note here, it smells woody with mixed notes of buttery oak, and hints of vanilla, and some sort of note that reminds me of cola. Underneath the oak is a nice fruitiness that reminds me of raisins. The combination of the vanilla oak notes and the malt remind me of some sort of fresh bready pastry or muffin perhaps.

The taste is initially quite dry up front, but has a certain fullness and amount of body to it, that seems like it might be contributed from the oak & tannins. The body has a soft creaminess to it that is accentuated by a soft vanilla note. This beer hides its alcohol quite well, and even the oak is not so egregious as to be overwhelming. The oak is definitely pretty prominent here, buttery oak is foremost, but there is a woody almost nutty note as well. As in the aroma I get a certain note here that reminds me of cola, interesting and it seems to work here.

While the oak is not too dominant in this beer, I think that it is a bit too much. There is not enough of the rich beer notes that I would like to see. The malt is too subtle underneath the oak; perhaps a bit of caramel and a certain fullness that I would attribute to malt character. This is certainly drinkable, and I would even want a few more bottles of this to age for a couple of years.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep amber with a white foam collar. Aroma of dark fruits and a wine like barrel note. Sweet, fruity and oaky aroma. In the taste, nice and malty, with candied nuts, cocoa, fruity wine, and dark fruit. The body is juicy, yet semi dry and has a rock solid carbonation earned from blending a portion from steel fermenters as well as barrel aging and blending. Overall, this is a winner. A very lively Belgian Strong Dark ale.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.9/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Beachwood BBQ,

A: Pours brown with a light off-white head, good lace.

S: Definite medicinal alcohol, phenol, dark fruit.

T: Prune and date syrup are evident with a bit of molasses and oak. Some phenol is still there, but not as big as in the smell which makes the drink more satisfying in the end.

M: Rather full-bodied, creamy, some ethanol notes.

D: Good, but not as good as I expected, but another solid brew from Allagash and one I's certainly have again.

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Photo of stevoj
3.97/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

On tap in South Philly during Philly beer week. Deep dark brown and rich syrupy aroma. Elements of dried fruit, raisins, prunes, but overall smooth and highly drinkable.

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Photo of John_M
4.28/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap the other night at the Allagash event at Max's.

This beer is just luscious looking. It pours a dark brown color with a creamy looking, persisting head. There is very good head retention and very good lacing. The beer looks viscuous. On the nose I get lots of chocolate and vanilla, and the beer just smells decadent and rich. The beer is very rich and long lasting on the palate, with the flavor profile replicating the nose. The beer is moderately sweet, with a soft, plush, satin-like mouthfeel. The beer has almost a creamy consistency to it. There is not a sharp edge anywhere with this beer, and it has a long finish with barely noticeable alcohol.

Outstanding. An excellent beer from Allagash.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.28/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled January, 2008- cases bottled, 600. I bought this from Decatur Wine and Spirits. Definitely could use some aging. It is pretty tasty right now, but the taste of new oak is pretty strong. If you like that, drink it now. If not, age this for a year or more. Since I've never had it before, I couldn't wait and decided to try it fresh. Pours as about a dark a brown as you can get before shifting to black. Fairly thin head, but there is barely any head fading. The whole cap sticks around for the life of the beer. There is also some spotty lacing. Smell is oak dominated, with some subtle typical Belgian strong dark notes of raisins, candi sugar, toffee, and spice in the background. The taste becomes more integrated as the beer warms and opens up, but there is still a lot of new white oak in the flavor. Spicy oak notes, woody, vanilla, and quite a tannic bitterness that echoes through the whole thing. At this point, the raisin, prune, candi sugar, and toffee play second fiddle to the oak bomb. That being said, as with a great wine, the early oak and tannins predict greatness in the future of this beer. With some aging, these components should mellow and become more seemlesly integrated. Also, although the oak is prominent, the tannins are the star, and this beer is not a vanilla bomb. This makes the whole flavorr profile more complexx and interesting. Mouthfeel is full, creamy, and quite tannic. Challenging and complex. The alcohol is eextremely well hidden and as big in flavors as this beer is, it is still a pleasure to suss out the various components of this brew. A prime candidate forr cellaring.

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Allagash Odyssey from Allagash Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 419 ratings.
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