Aorta Ale (Double Red Ale) | Short's Brewing Company

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Aorta Ale (Double Red Ale)Aorta Ale (Double Red Ale)
BA SCORE
3.89/5
Very Good
174 Ratings
Aorta Ale (Double Red Ale)Aorta Ale (Double Red Ale)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Short's Brewing Company
Michigan, United States
shortsbrewing.com

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.60%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
A double red ale that seems to indicate an intensity of flavor simply by it’s dark reddish brown appearance. Subtle aromas of candy, brown sugar, and toasted malt seem reluctantly released from the depths of this full bodied beast. Raisins, figs, and burnt caramel are among some of the sweeter flavors up front, before giving way to a roasted cocoa like bitterness that becomes magnified by high alpha hops. Considering the initial overall sweetness, it’s a heightened bitterness that dominates the finish.

82 IBU

Added by BeerBeing on 10-13-2007

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#11,398
Reviews:
59
Ratings:
174
pDev:
12.34%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
16
Gots:
15
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 174 |  Reviews: 59
Photo of tectactoe
3.97/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I've been wanting to try this one for a pretty long time, finally excited to finally get the chance to do so. Typically haven't been a huge fan of "red" ales in the past, but I'll never turn down a Shorts beer I haven't had. This one pours a lighter ruby-red color with hints of copper and maybe even a touch of purple. The cap is off-white showing decent retention and leaving some generous lacing through the top half of the glass.

The aroma's pretty light overall, or at least at first. I pick up quick on a few, sweet and malty aromas. Some citrus and juicy fruits; tangerine, melons, raisins, and plums. I know, a strange combination of fruits, but the aroma isn't "dark" enough to be comprise of all "dark" fruits. There are lighter and juicier aromas abound, I'm thinking tangerine is the biggest suspect. Hops aren't as vibrant as I'd like, but I have no idea how old this beer is, so what can I say? Mild hop oils with a very small hint of pine and resin. This one is certainly dominated by the fruity aromas and the sweet malt, though.

Up front, the first sip is a little boozier than I would have guessed it to be, but it comes hand in hand with a big sweetness to provide some balance. Very juicy and fruity like the aroma would have you believe. And when I say fruity, I don't mean in a "fruit beer" kind of way, I mean it in a "red ale" kind of way. Make sense? Didn't think so. Heavy tangerines, candied raisins, plum juice - this one is definitely sweet, but the hops quickly do their job to bring harmony to the table. Pungent, oily, and some lightly resinous pine needles with a herbal and almost ashy finish.

As the beer gets warmer, I get more and more caramel from the malt - by the last few ounces of this brew, the caramel was one of the biggest flavors, and the aftertaste was dominated with heavy caramel malts, toasted bread, and sugary graham crackers with some diminished, ashy hops and a fading, fruity sweetness. Excellent finish, actually, and maybe even better than the beginning and middle portion of the sip. Body is medium with a lightly sticky and moderately slick feel to it, medium carbonation.

Leave it to Shorts to make a beer for every style that ever existed. I'm sure this isn't the first "double red", but there probably aren't too many out there. Pretty good overall, maybe a little heavy on the sweetness - I would have liked more of an offsetting, bitterness balance. However, for not being particularly fond of the style, I enjoyed this one quite a bit.

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Photo of prototypic
4.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle #251 of 780.

Many thanks to ThomasHardy for this one. A rarity I never thought I'd see. Thanks, Brady.

Aorta Ale pours moderate brown color with an excellent scarlet hue. It's a little hazy, but backlighting really gives a nice reddish color. It's topped with a tan head that reaches nearly two fingers deep. It's very slow to recede and leaves a somewhat sticky lacing on the glass. Very nice looking beer.

The nose is very malty and a little sweet smelling. Caramel malts are abundant. There are some hop remnants remaining. They smell a little piney and citric. There's a little grapefruit and orange but not much. I'd love to try a bottle of this stuff fresh. It smells like the hops have degraded over time. No surprise there. I'm a little surprised they're noted at all since the accompanying label indicates this was bottled in February, 2007.
Alcohol is blended well and goes unnoticed. All in all, this is a good smelling beer. I suspect it'd be excellent fresh. Today, very good.

The flavor profile is very consistent with the nose. Caramel malts are sweet and substantial. They give it a really solid base. As I suspected, the hop flavor has largely disappeared. There's maybe a little pine flavor and some residual bitterness. I'm not picking up much in the citrus department here. I'm still shocked there's any at all. I'll take it. Alcohol is masked well and isn't noticeable. It's somewhat modest at 7.6%, so that's not too surprising. It finishes sweet and a little bitter. At the end of the day, this is good stuff. For a bottle that's 2 and a ½ years old, it's held up very well. Aside from hop degradation, you really can't tell. There's no oxidization at all.

Aorta Ale has a medium body that's overall smooth. Carbonation is dialed down nicely. It's not quite creamy, but it's nice and smooth. Drinkability is actually very high. This is tasty stuff despite its age. At 7.6%, it's not too big. I expected something more substantial for a 'Double Red.' It goes down easy and is rather approachable. I'm splitting the 750, but would've gladly tackled it alone.

Short's did a really nice job with Aorta Ale. I'd love to try a bottle of this stuff fresh. I suspect the hops are a little more vibrant and add a really nice dimension to the flavor. As old as this bottle is, it still has a surprisingly bitter flavor, but lacks the punch of fresh hops. Nonetheless, it's held on to its youth amazingly well. Really good stuff. Thanks, Brady.

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Photo of gford217
4.03/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to rlcnmeyer for this rarity, bottle #546, poured into a tulip.

There is plenty of carbonation on this one and it pours a deep copper with a huge creamy off-white head that dissipates slowly and leaves tons of lacing.

The aroma is that of a nice big red ale. It's got lots of caramel sweetness but with a toasted bread character overall. There are vestiges of hops in the nose, with a very faint citrus hop presence. It's pretty much all malts in the nose at this point.

The taste is sweet up front with lots of caramel malts and even some dark fruits and sugar. The finish really brings out the toasted bready malts and the finish is subsequently dry and ever so slightly bitter. Again, the malts are the major player here.

The mouthfeel is highly carbonation and on the heavier side of medium bodied. The slight bitterness, even after a couple years, suggests there was a solid hop profile on this one initially.

Another winner from Shorts with this one. It's definitely one of the more straight forward imperial series beers, and, while not as creative as some of the others, it's very drinkable and a solid execution of an amped-up amber.

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Photo of elNopalero
4.5/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a double red ale from the good folks at Short’s. I couldn’t wait to try it!

This poured a golden-ruby hue with foamy big bubbles. It has a light grapefruity aroma with an upfront bittering. Very resiny, very piney, with grapefruit citrus notes and a sharp bittering that brings things into focus along with a low, light malt sweetness for balance.

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Photo of szmnnl99
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of mrebeka
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of tpd975
3.67/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Huge thanks to jdubfl for bringing all the Short's beers in for a tasting.

A: Pours a golden hue with a small white head. No retention or lace.

S: Big dose of citrus hops, sweet caramel malt, and brown sugar.

T: Tons of sweetness, nice resinous piney hops as well that sort of compounds the sweetness. There is a subtle cardboard flavor beneath from slight oxidation.

M: Rather full in body, sweet, chewey.

D: Not bad. The hops have held up well for a two year old beer. Starting to show a bit of oxidation though.

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Photo of durlta
3.5/5  rDev -10%

Photo of JohnnieNepal
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of alexgash
4.33/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle.

Slightly hazy dark amber with coppery edges. Two fingers of thick, luscious, bright light khaki head. Great lacing. Lots of fruity malt on the nose. Sappy, piny hop notes as well.

Toasted malts up front, before quickly becoming sweeter. Candied fruits and caramel in a delicious battle for mid-palate supremacy. Moderate herbal hop bitterness comes in to provide a little balance, before turning minty and piny in the finish. Lots of lingering caramel and fruit malt in the finish. Medium body with a slightly creamy feel. Very much what I look for in a good red/amber ale. Delicious!

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Photo of hopdog
3.7/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

750ml bottle acquired in trade with hoppymea (thanks Derek!). Bottled on 2/6/07 and # 117 of 780.

Poured a medium amberish color with a larger sized off white head. Aromas of caramel, some dark fruits, a little earthy, and citrus. Tastes of caramel, dark fruits, toffee, and some citrus. On the sweeter side. Creamy body.

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Photo of SaisonRichBiere
4/5  rDev +2.8%

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

Bottles shared with fellow geeks at a tasting party on 03-20-10.

A-Copper kissed golden yellow with a small white head that reduced to a wispy veil and left zero lacing.

S-For a three year old brew this one is still retaining a fairly impressive dose of citrus hop aroma. This quickly gives way to sweet caramel malt and a light touch of brown sugar.

T-Lots of caramel and sugary sweetness up front with a nice dose of spicy bitterness in support. Not surprised at all really that the hops have faded into the background in this one.

M-Medium-heavy bodied, fairly viscous and very smooth.

D-Certainly held up fairly well for a three year old beer. I would have liked to have had this fresh but....It grew a bit tiresome in the end.

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Photo of WeisGuy
3.5/5  rDev -10%

Photo of Jas45678
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of MacStinson
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of Floydster
3.48/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

750 ml bottle acquired in a recent trade with hoppymeal, thanks again Derek, bottle #576 of 798, opened up with my dad last night, poured into my an imperial pint glass, color is a medium red with some dark orange tint, 3/4 creamy off white head, aroma is lots of malt, toffee, caramel, sweetness, hint of spice, floral accents, and earthiness, taste starts off very malty with a big caramel presence, sweet and slighly toasted with some chewiness too in the middle, finish has more malt with even some dark fruits and citrus, very malty aftertaste, sweet, malty, and slightly chewy mouthfeel, medium to full bodied, light carbonation, could not drink much more than a glass, pretty filling, too much malt for me, but that is evident in this style period, so it is about average among other imperial reds or ambers I have had, this beer is two and a half years old and still tastes like it did the first time I had it a year or so ago which is a good thing being that it is below eight percent ABV, would drink again, worth trying

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Photo of ThePorterSorter
3.51/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks saisonrichbiere for the hook up

The beer pours a clear, darker than expected rusty brown (more harvest orange in the light) topped by a wispy white head that fades quickly with minimal lacing. The nose is relatively caramel forward with a touch of earthy hops (not very citrusy for a beer boasting copious amounts of cascade hops). Honestly, the hops are very overpowered by the caramelized malts. The taste presents more bitter spiciness than expected with even more overpowering malts to follow. I understand this is an imperial beer, but someone missed the imperial grade hopping memo...although I must admit, the slightly spicy hops, smooth toasty caramel malts, and big %abv does provide for a nice mouthfeel. I'm glad I tried this beer, and tend to enjoy the style, but would probably pass on another opportunity to try this again in the future.

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Photo of thebigredone
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of gordavidson
4.23/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a deep, clear amber with some orange and brown highlights. The off-white head is thick and creamy and has great retention and leaves some lacing as it works its way down the glass.

S- Grass, caramel, pine, and a bit of citrus. There is a bit of earthiness on the finish. All of the aspects blend very nicely together.

T- Sticky pine, grass, citrus, and caramel. The flavors are much sharper and more pronounced than the aroma led me to believe. Pretty sweet at the beginning, but the hops quickly make their presence known and leaves some definite lingering bitterness.

M- Smooth and creamy body with a bit of carbonation bite on the finish that really emphasizes the oily and bitter aspect from the hops.

O- A very interesting and well made beer from Short's. Between the strong flavors and well-rounded nature to this beer, this is one of the more memorable offerings from this brewery.

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Photo of gratefulbeerhead
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of Tracker83
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Photo of midlifec
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of joe1510
4.15/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750ml

Bottle #184 of 780
Brewed 7/5/06

I was lucky enough to land this in a great trade with Hoppymeal, thanks Derek! Aorta Double Red pours a glowing slightly hazed ruby red. A few fine carbonation bubbles make their way to the surface but there's not much action. Two fingers worth of ivory head formed on the pour and eventually fell to a thick cap leaving sheet lacing on the fall. A really great looking beer!

My nose is immediately greeted with a good amount of mandarin orange and a tea-leaf like hoppiness. The mandarin is something I don't come across very often and I'm really diggin' it! Light caramel and toasty malts lay down the foundation and add a touch of sweetness. A hoppy red ale? Just my style!

The flavor follows the aroma step-by-step. The toasted graininess sets the stage for the more dominant hoppiness. There's hardly any bitterness involved but more of flavor, aroma, and a big dry hopping. The hoppiness comes along more tea leaf like in the flavor than the mandarin the aroma suggested but that may be because it's been a year and a half since the brewing. A very well put together red ale.

I've sampled a few Short's beers and the mouthfeel has been very good on each one, this is no exception. They manage to keep the body lighter than expected for such big beers. Velvety medium body with a mild carbonation but there's just enough there to tickle the tongue.

Aorta Ale is an easy one to put away. The alcohol, at 7.6%, never gets in the way. And it's all at once refreshing and delicious!

Aorta Ale is another really good brew from Short's. I would have loved to get a bottle of this fresh and give it a try. I'm sure the Columbus used would have been a real treat fresh because they're still damn good after a year and a half.

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Photo of SPLITGRIN
4.6/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A beautiful three finger frothy light tan head easily comes to the top of my glass. Solid staying power and nice lace is left behind. Body is a deep mahogany brown with a bit of a red burnish to it. Nose is of roasty camp fire like malts and a mineral, woodsy hop profile. Some dark fruit maybe cherries are there also. On first sip I think to my self, wow there is a lot going on here. I could say dark fruit but that would be to narrow. Cherry skins, rhubarb, dandelion and grape seed come to mind at first. There is a mineral profile here that is almost metallic also. Actually very metallic, dare I say iron. Mouthfeel is attractive, be it all over the place. Never gets old though. This beer was a real adventure and a joy to drink from beginning to end.

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Aorta Ale (Double Red Ale) from Short's Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.89 out of 5 with 174 ratings