Arms Akimbo | Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

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8 Ratings

Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States

Style: American Porter

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.50%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
This deeply robust Porter was brewed with star anise, molasses and balsam fir tips from Dogfish Head,Maine(really, our friends trekked into the woods, chopped off some branch tips, boxed them up and sent them down to Delaware for us to brew with!)to impart a spicy, resinous character in the beer. It is a dark ale with a licorice and sweet roasted malt that are apparent in the aroma. The first taste is sweet with notes of pine, black licorice, molasses and dark roasted malt.

Added by lackenhauser on 11-21-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 8 |  Reviews: 7
Reviews by Nutleybeer:
Photo of Nutleybeer
3.94/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Was able to give this a shot while at the pub in Delaware. Wow, a unique beer. Not your traditional holiday beer offering. Poured like your average porter, with a moderate head.

DFH describes it as flavored with star anise, molasses and a hint balsam fir. The smell is interesting, different. Spicy, perhaps. The first sip is a mix of sweetness and the licorice spiciness.

Like a lot of DFH beers, it is well made and quite interesting. Deep, rich flavors. How many of these could I drink in a given night? One maybe two. Strong, potent flavors. A+ for something beyond the run of the mill winter beer.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of bgjohnston
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I tried this at their pub while I was in the area shortly before New Year's. While I am not normally a fan of anise, I wanted to try something different.

The beer is very dark, similar to various stouts I have tried, and while the glass that came to my table did not have much of a head, what little was there did not disappear until the glass was almost empty.

I mentioned that I am not normally a fan of anise because, despite that, I still enjoyed this beer. The anise flavor was held in check by a smooth maltiness; a really neat experience.

I don't feel that I would want to drink this beer very often, nor would I ever want more than a glass of it at any one time, but it was interesting and fun, nonetheless.

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Photo of lackenhauser
4.02/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Average brown color with what looks like a low carbonation level. Moderate aroma of spruce and licorice. Great, complex flavors swirl together-decent roast flavor balanced against a licorice/anise sort of thing. Once that is in the backround the spruce flavor comes through. Moderate amount of bitterness. Halfway down the glass and the licorice seems to make it's presence known again. I think I have had 2 other spruce flavored beers in my life-this blows them away. Very even handed in the blend of flavors. Nice body-great drying in the finish. Very drinkable. A great, great beer. Sam, make this your annual Xmas beer I say!

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Photo of JohnQVegas
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Cask @ BTAH.

Pours opaque black, with a one finger, big bubbled head.

Nose is licorice, some espresso and baker's chocolate.

Taste is full - roasty espresso and a bunch of licorice up front, bit of acidic astringency around the edges, but smooth and full overall, with hints of cocoa complementing the espresso. An almost herbal, slightly bitter finish. Quite an interesting beer. The licorice may have been a bit on the high side for me, but I'd certainly order this again from cask.

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Photo of THECPJ
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of udrick
3.94/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is an interesting brew--not for the faint of heart.

A--Deep, black porter. Had about a one-finger head with great retention.

S--Sweet, probably from the molasses. Otherwise, crisp and clean.

T--The star anise and fir add a spice and a bite that you will either love or hate.

M--Rich like a porter should be, but goes down easy.

D--This is a great seasonal. It is a change from the norm--quite frankly, a change from anything you'll have anywhere else. I hope this one comes back every year.

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Photo of treehugger02010
4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on-tap at Dogfish Head Brewings and Eats in Rehoboth, DE.
Appearance: A deep black body with a small thin tan head, good retention but not lacing.
Smell: Sweet dates and figs.
Taste: Dark fruits, a bit boozy (not off putting), maybe winey.
Mouthfeel: Smooth down the throat but crisp up-front.
Drinkability: Very good.
Don't drink and review.

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Photo of thequeen711
3.5/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A nice dark beer, light lacing with retention til the end! Licorice nose, which is so unusual, who'd a thunk a licorice beer but Sam...This one is a slow sipper, with full flavour of roasted coffee and licorice. I don't think I'd be able to drink this on a regular basis, but it's always a treat to taste a new brew from Dogfish Head. Mouthfeel a little chewy, and drinkability is a sipper.

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Arms Akimbo from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Beer rating: 3.89 out of 5 with 8 ratings