Conflux Series 2: Collage
Deschutes Brewery

Conflux Series 2: CollageConflux Series 2: Collage
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Style:
Strong Ale - American
ABV:
14.3%
Score:
94
Avg:
4.41 | pDev: 8.62%
Reviews:
53
Ratings:
157
From:
Deschutes Brewery
 
Oregon, United States
Avail:
Retired (no longer brewed)
Wants
  24
Gots
  56
SCORE
94
Outstanding
Conflux Series 2: CollageConflux Series 2: Collage
Notes: This second version magically blends:
The Abyss (100% aged in Pinot barrels)
The Stoic (100% aged in Pinot barrels)
Hair of the Dog’s Fred (aged in American oak and rye whiskey barrels)
Doggie Claws (100% aged in cognac barrels).
Reviews: 53 | Ratings: 157 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by donovansill:
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donovansill from Minnesota

3.75/5  rDev -15%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Jun 10, 2017
More User Reviews:
Photo of maximum12
maximum12 from Minnesota

4.3/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The kitchen sink in a 22 oz. bottle! Split with my wife.

Pour is magenta with hints of ruby, pretentious, & cherise. Smells like cherries, oak, pinot, sugar. Not a bad sunrise.

Collage #2 tastes like a liqueur suicide…imagine making those at 7-11. I spy sherry, cognac, tons of pinot noir, with touches of bourbon & oak. Beer? Underneath the high-ABV cavalcade there‘s big malt sweetness, molasses, black sugar, mildly bitter hops, light chocolate, before the finish takes a big, boozy bite out of my ass. Wow wobbles. Dry & thick & the drinkability belies the Green Giant ABV. I can taste it, but I don’t care.

This beer is a solid argument for single-level housing, i.e. no stairs, no stumble, no broken knee. So much better than #1 fresh - which was a very good beer - I am going to need one more to age. Excellent.

Nov 12, 2016
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kitch from Hong Kong

4.34/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A 22 fl oz bottle with a bottled on date of 1st August 2016. Poured into a snifter glass.

Appearance: A clear dark amber brown colour with pretty much no head other than an extremely thin tanned coloured layer that doesn’t even cover it completely and dissipates quickly. Only some sparse lacing.

Aroma: Lots of dark fruits especially raisins, cherry, raspberries, plum and prunes. Following that, there’s roasted malt, caramel, toffee, oak, vanilla, molasses, chocolate and whiskey. The Pinot character seems to come out more as it warms.

Taste: Chocolate and cocoa at the beginning followed by some dark fruit, mainly raisin, cherry and prunes. In the middle there is some red wine coming through before finishing with caramel, toffee, vanilla, oak, molasses and whiskey.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with light but prickly carbonation and light alcohol warmth.

Overall: This wonderful sipper has complex aromas and taste. It is very well blended as the result is well balanced. Good fruit, malt and barrel character. I already have another bottle to age.

Feb 03, 2017
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superspak from Michigan

4.42/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle into snifter, bottled on 8/1/2016. Pours crystal clear very dark ruby/brown color with a 1-2 finger fairly dense and fluffy light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of huge raisin, cherry, blueberry, raspberry, fig, date, orange, apricot, red wine, vanilla, toffee, toasted oak, rye whiskey, molasses, brown sugar, dark bread, chocolate, cocoa, peppercorn, cinnamon, leather, tobacco, and oak/roast/toasted earthiness. Incredible aromas with awesome balance and complexity of dark/roast/bready malt and wine/spirit barrel notes; with big strength. Taste of huge raisin, cherry, blueberry, raspberry, fig, date, orange, apricot, red wine, vanilla, toffee, toasted oak, rye whiskey, molasses, brown sugar, dark bread, chocolate, cocoa, peppercorn, cinnamon, leather, tobacco, and oak/roast/toasted earthiness. Light-moderate whiskey/oak spiciness and light roast bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of dark fruit, berries, orange, apricot, red wine, vanilla, toffee, toasted oak, rye whiskey, molasses, brown sugar, dark bread, chocolate, cocoa, peppercorn, cinnamon, leather, tobacco, and oak/roast/toasted earthiness on the finish for a while. Incredible complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roast/bready malt and wine/spirit barrel flavors; with a great roasted bitter/sweet and whiskey/oak spiciness balance; and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Light dryness from whiskey/oak spiciness, increasing through the glass. Light-medium carbonation and full body; with a very smooth, creamy/silky, and lightly slick/sticky/chalky balanced mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with a small warmth lingering after the finish; with minimal barrel booziness. Overall this is an amazing barrel aged blended strong ale! All around incredible complexity, robustness, and balance of dark/roast/bready malt and wine/spirit barrel flavors; very smooth and dangerously easy to sip on for the huge ABV. Huge on the oak presence, but still balanced with all the varying malt and barrel complexities of the blended base beers; without being boozy. An insanely delicious offering all around.

Dec 04, 2016
Photo of Treyliff
Treyliff from West Virginia

4.57/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

22oz bottle poured into a snifter
Bottled 8/1/16

A- pours a deep brown color with a one-finger foamy off-white head that has short retention

S- bold and complex notes, to be expected from the variety of styles and barrels used in the blend. Initial notes of dark grape, black licorice, date & fig & cognac barrel. Undertones of tobacco, leather, caramel, chocolate, wet oak, black currant, Belgian candied sugar and peppery yeast. Each beer seems to be contributing to the nose

T- the complexity go the flavor continues to follow the nose. Initial impressing is some vinous notes of red wine, along with black currant & fig. Mid-palate brings out some cognac notes, along with pipe tobacco, licorice & wet oaky whiskey. The finish brings out sweet notes of caramel & plumb, lingers of spicy yeast, wood & more vinous red wine

M- medium body with moderate carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel that continues into the finish, alcohol hidden pretty well

O- the layers of complexity continue to evolve as the beer warms up, delicious

Jan 04, 2018
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cjgiant from District of Columbia

4.51/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Bottle:
The beer pours a deep ruby-tinged brown that ends up a very dark brown in a medium Teku glass. Head doesn't build too much, but for a barrel-aged 14%, the tan head does end up in a medium thick rim around the glass. Behind the color, the beer is pretty obviously clear from looking at the edges.

The nose is pretty heavy on the barrel notes - with the various types of vessels playing quite well together. To me the wine barrels seem to provide the backbone. The rye adds a little vanilla, and actually the combination gives an interesting chocolate note (from the Abyss, perhaps). There's a light tartness that seems vinous, but there is also a little sweetness that seems like a cognac to me. Maybe it's power of suggestion, but I think I do get all the barrels.

My initial impression of the taste is "wow!" At first I am hit with a little cocoa to chocolate opening, maybe with a little bit of dark fruit thrown in. There is a little vanilla that I think will lead to the rye whiskey flavor, but it doesn't get there. A little tart that seems berry-like is the transition that comes. This fades to a deep red wine-like flavor. The chocolate seems to flow underneath this all very lightly and freely.

This beer is very nice, bold in flavor but not heavy on the palate. There is a nice level of carbonation keeping this from being watery or syrupy. I enjoyed the transitions this beer went through and that the beers seemed to blend together quite nicely.

Jan 01, 2017
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MonkeyBread from Nevada

4.13/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Dec 24, 2016
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FalconOne from Ohio

4.53/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dec 19, 2016
Photo of BrewingMN
BrewingMN from Minnesota

5/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Color is a dark ruby glow. Small white head. Smell is of sweet malts, bourbon, raisins, oak, vanilla, cherry, heaven. Taste follows the nose with boozy raisins being the most prominent. Wine barrel is noticeable but whiskey is very forward as well. This is one of the greatest beers to pass my lips! I can only imagine what a year or two in the cellar will do. Beer of the year for me. Definitely a must try!

Oct 22, 2016
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Fireman_RK from North Carolina

4.81/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

L: Rich mahogany and licorice hues with a thin sandy head
S: Figs, cognac, vanilla, oak, bourbon, and dark fruits
T: Dates, dark chocolate, leather, tobacco, and oatmeal raisin cookies
F: Medium thickness and a nice supporting carb
O: Wow - this was an engaging and complex ride from start to finish. Given the range of incredible beers and unique barrel aging they experienced, it would be a vast understatement to say that this was 'complex' - so much going on in each sip it's hard to keep track. If you're seeking a plethora of flavors, depth, and range - this is absolutely worth seeking out.

Feb 08, 2017
Photo of Shockey
Shockey from Ohio

3.93/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Feb 05, 2017
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Wisconsin_IPA_Lover from Wisconsin

4.39/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Feb 12, 2017
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John_Beeryman from Virginia

4/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jun 03, 2017
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DamienI from Washington

3.9/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Jan 07, 2017
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mig100 from Texas

4.43/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Nov 27, 2016
Photo of petewheeler
petewheeler from Maryland

4.5/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dec 25, 2016
Photo of StonedTrippin
StonedTrippin from Colorado

4.47/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

holy cow, what a blend! this is a monster of a beer, a combination of monsters really, and its complex and delicious, but make sure you have a couple of friends around who can hang, as this is about a sturdy as they come, the definition of a slow sipper! deep burgundy color to it, all kinds of viscosity, and some froth around the edges too, showing signs of life. its aroma is insane, i get a whole ton of red wine, fusel alcohol, and malt complexity, with some brown sugar and molasses sweetness, heavy grape and oak tannins, and cool layers of baked blackberry, black cherry, and vanilla. at first i start trying to pick apart the threads in here and identify their contributions individually, being quite familiar with most of them, and i do get some nice dark abyss roasted grain, some english malt and cognac character from the doggie claws, and the grapey pop and belgian essence of the stoic, but i quickly conclude that the total is far more than the sum of its parts, even though that sum is astronomical on its own, there is a synergy here that really is the whole point of this, and i decide to just roll with it, not dissect it too much, and just enjoy the complexity, which is basically unrivaled. a ton of wine on this, and lots of alcohol too, i like that in a beer like this, its big but its mellow too somehow, all the wood i guess. layers of stewed fruit, cinnamon, coffee cake, brandy, red apple, molasses, maple syrup, rye spice, and figs. i absolutely love it, and there is just a touch of acidity here almost helping it swallow clean, at least for what it is. huge body, like wet cement on the palate, but so smooth and long, its a delight to drink, opens up amazingly well with some temperature, and really is worth seeking out, an intelligent and delicious offering, as special as beer gets as far as i am concerned. a treat to share with new friends!

Jun 04, 2019
Photo of darktronica
darktronica from Indiana

4.56/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Vinous, brandy-like, and with moderate notes of whiskey and barrel oak. This is quite a melange of spirits, betraying its high ABV and blended lineage. Other reviews give an adequate rundown of the flavor profile, but suffice to say, this is a very successful experiment. Despite its high price, I would definitely recommend giving this a shot if you enjoy highly complex ales and appreciate a variety of sources for barrels. As I've alluded to at the start, this is a showcase for the influences lent by previous barrel inhabitants; somehow, despite the blend, each origin remains distinct and appreciable. Extremely skillful.

Mar 11, 2017
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Chcshammonde from California

4.1/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Feb 08, 2017
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dshansen1184 from Washington

4.23/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Sep 07, 2017
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Hop_God from California

4.46/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: deep brown to espresso. Thin well defined khaki bubbles.

S: tobacco. Molasses. Booze. Oak. Wine. Spice. Leather.

T: booze. Vanilla. Caramel. Oak. Cabernet. Molasses. Syrup. Burnt sugar. Brown sugar. Bittersweet chocolate. Subtle marshmallow. This is fucking delicious.

F: soft. Creamy. Good medium plus body. Finishes crisp. Sweet but toes the line of not being cloying like Herschel walker with the Cowboys.

O: I'm sooo impressed with this. I mean it is done with great finesse. It's so close to being too sweet but stops just shy which makes it amazing.

Nov 12, 2016
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Blazer22 from Colorado

4.47/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Apr 16, 2018
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WBLiquors from Texas

4.58/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Excellent appearance, dark, appears fairly heavy, very little head
Smell is fantastic, sweet malts, bourbon, toffee, figs, vanilla
Taste is very well balanced and complex, a lot going on here. As others have stated, the bourbon shines through but your still able to pick up on the wine barrels and a variety of other flavors.
Extremely complex and enjoyable!

Nov 10, 2016
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KensWorld from Florida

4.64/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Mar 11, 2018
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Beerbom from California

4.19/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Apr 19, 2017
Conflux Series 2: Collage from Deschutes Brewery
Beer rating: 94 out of 100 with 157 ratings