AZ Wilderness Barrel Aged 2014 Presidential Stout

Discussion in 'Southwest' started by sammyg832, Jun 5, 2014.

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  1. sammyg832

    sammyg832 Initiate (0) Oct 17, 2013 Arizona

    This is one brewery that deserves all the hype. It is a pleasure to have them in AZ. They are hands down the best brewery in Arizona and one of the best in the country.

    I was able to pick up 2 growlers and sad to finish the 2nd. It is the best of both worlds in imperial stouts for me. It has the peppers along the line of Prairies Bomb and the barrel aging adds another dimension. The Pappy and Rye Whiskey barrels really complement eachother.

    It is on tap still and highly recommend checking it out.

    Here is the description:
    11.5% RUSSIAN IMPERIAL STOUT MADE WITH SMOKED JALAPEÑOS FROM MCCLENDON SELECT AND SMOKED OVER AZ MESQUITE WOOD ALL AGED ON COCOA NIBS (PAPA NEW GUINEA AND BELIZE). Then blended from three whiskey barrels (Eagle Rare, Pappy, and rye)

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    #1 sammyg832, Jun 5, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2014
  2. mitchgx

    mitchgx Devotee (413) Aug 7, 2005 Arizona

    It's a good beer, and I'm certainly a fan of the AZW guys....i have to say that I'm not really getting any peppers from this beer, though....same with the non-BA version.

    On a semi-related note, I went to the AZW "Denmark in the Desert" Mikkeller-themed dinner the other night, and the kitchen and staff knocked it out of the park.
     
  3. sammyg832

    sammyg832 Initiate (0) Oct 17, 2013 Arizona

    I'm a huge fan of them too. Really good guys and know how to make stellar beer. It's not extremely strong but I get quite a lot from the jalapenos used. We all have different palates though.

    I bet the dinner was fantastic! I friend of mine went and had a blast.
     
  4. leosfire

    leosfire Initiate (95) Jun 4, 2014 Arizona

    I've been wanting to try AZW for weeks now. I plan to go in the next couple weeks. Which beers are best to try first?
     
  5. gkoz

    gkoz Aspirant (293) Apr 22, 2013 Arizona

    Luckily was in town to try this the past week. Actually signed a lease to move back to az in August, glad azw won't be too far from me in chandler. Moving my cellar across the country tho... Not too excited.
     
  6. bluesfortheredsun

    bluesfortheredsun Aspirant (258) Jan 27, 2014 California
    Trader

    I'd suggest going this weekend, I think the stout is still on tap. Otherwise definitely try everything that is on tap when you go- their IPAs are pretty good, but my favorite from them is the Bear Wallow Berliner Weisse.
     
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  7. leosfire

    leosfire Initiate (95) Jun 4, 2014 Arizona

    Going to Wilderness tonight for the first time!! Can't wait! :slight_smile:
     
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  8. Oktoberfiesta

    Oktoberfiesta Aspirant (283) Nov 16, 2013 New Mexico
    Trader

    I was there two weeks back... Am I missing something? The food was world class for sure. The five beers on tap (BWBW seemed to get returned from 95% of every sample board I saw) were above par for sure. But worth the crazy hype?? To no fault of their own I am guessing, it's a questionable question to ponder imho.

    Are there any regulars that stay on tap? They had five available at the time, with 4 more fermenting when I was there.. The Russian Imperial stouts are right up my alley. I feel I may have been caught in a bad tap rotation.. Refuge was solid but probably forgettable.. Saison had that unmalted aspect that brought out some flavors. Pale Ale had some fruit hop flavors I love. Nitro Coffee stout was near espresso pitch black level and when done on nitro turns flat right away. It was good.. BWBW wasn't my cup of tea at all. Tartness was up my alley. but the vomit smell/gag reflect inducing aspect of it... no.. I have no regrets for making my way there at all... Just be forewarned.,.. Hype can be a crazy beast (both good and bad).

    ** Realizing that they are brand spanking new and making beers at a level above 70% of other "craft" brewers is a sight to see.. I just dont know if its worth it at this point. The smaller batch sizes leave you wanting to visit every week though so you dont miss out.
     
    #8 Oktoberfiesta, Jun 9, 2014
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2014
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  9. sammyg832

    sammyg832 Initiate (0) Oct 17, 2013 Arizona

    Good luck with the move! You're lucky that you will be so close. Moving a cellar across country......I definitely understand. Especially to this heat
     
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  10. sammyg832

    sammyg832 Initiate (0) Oct 17, 2013 Arizona

    Sorry for not replying before. How did you enjoy AZ Wilderness? Hope you had a great time :slight_smile:
     
  11. leosfire

    leosfire Initiate (95) Jun 4, 2014 Arizona

    I loved it! The refuge is really good. I had the Rincon Red this past Sunday and I liked that too. I really liked the vibe and atmosphere. It reminded me of Four Peaks when they started out. I like how close it is to me and can definitely see myself going there more often. Oh, and the two things I've ordered food wise have been great.
     
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  12. sammyg832

    sammyg832 Initiate (0) Oct 17, 2013 Arizona

    Sweet! Glad you had a great time. The Refuge is really good. I really like their Big Guy Rye. It's like Hop Rod Rye by Bear Republic but a bit more juicy. I hope they tap that again soon. That is great that you live so close. I really hope AZ Wilderness take off. I'm sure they will once the Mikkeller collaboration gets released.

    If you wanna try a great beer you should go to Fate and have their Double Oatmeal IPA. They just tapped it and is super fresh. I may have to go get a little 32oz growler after yoga tonight. I love being productive after my workouts haha :grinning:
     
  13. leosfire

    leosfire Initiate (95) Jun 4, 2014 Arizona

    I haven't been to Fate yet. Oatmeal IPA? That sounds very intriguing! I've been told by a couple people that the Big Guy Rye is really good. I think if they keep doing the business they've been doing, they'll have to expand. And there's nothing wrong with working out for beer, I tell myself that all the time. :wink:
     
  14. sammyg832

    sammyg832 Initiate (0) Oct 17, 2013 Arizona

    An Oatmeal IPA sounds a bit weird but it's incredible. I was skeptical at first when people told me about it but it's easily one of my top IPA's. Plus Fate brew some awesome beer. Their stouts are incredible. Their Candy Bar Milk Stout got an award at GBF. Definitely worth checking out. Fate and AZ Wilderness are my fave breweries in AZ. I'm glad I'm not the only one who doesn't mind working out for beer haha :slight_smile:
     
  15. thewrongtone

    thewrongtone Initiate (132) Oct 15, 2006 Arkansas

    Man, makes me miss AZ a little bit. Sounds like one tasty beverage!

    Aren't smoked jalapenos called chipotles?
     
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  16. sammyg832

    sammyg832 Initiate (0) Oct 17, 2013 Arizona

    The Presidential was amazing. Hope they end up bottling it sometime down the line.

    Smoked Jalapenos are Chipotles. Can tell you are from the SW :wink:
     
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  17. thewrongtone

    thewrongtone Initiate (132) Oct 15, 2006 Arkansas

    6 years in Southeast AZ and 5 more in south TX!
     
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  18. sammyg832

    sammyg832 Initiate (0) Oct 17, 2013 Arizona

    Knew it!! :grinning: How do you like the SW? It took me a while to warm up to Arizona. No pun intended haha.
     
  19. thewrongtone

    thewrongtone Initiate (132) Oct 15, 2006 Arkansas

    Meh. I've only lived in the crappy parts and I'm a southern boy at heart, so I shouldn't judge. Sometimes I miss the high desert of Cochise County, and I did enjoy visiting Flagstaff.
     
  20. SalukiAlum

    SalukiAlum Disciple (355) Dec 19, 2010 Colorado
    Trader

    The BA Presidential Stout was solid! But was expecting more barrel presence, otherwise very good. So had to pop a Bourbon County afterwards just for comparison, that has barrel presence!! Love AZ Wilderness and would buy this again, but guess I was looking for more booze! (sort of reminded me of Velvet Merkin oddly enough)
     
  21. ONovoMexicano

    ONovoMexicano Poo-Bah (2,831) Jun 14, 2012 New Mexico



    I am planning to go out of my way and brave the 100+ temps to visit this brewery in a week. Unfortunately, an acquaintance here in New Mexico posted a number of Untappd check-ins last night suggesting that many of AZ Wilderness's beers lacked carbonation. Then, I see Oktoberfiesta's post below that somewhat echoes the acquaintance's reaction. Now I'm having second thoughts about a visit.

    OP, what's your take? Should I keep the faith?

    Oktoberfiesta, I have to say, I wish some of our local brewers would be adventurous like AZ Wilderness.
     
  22. sammyg832

    sammyg832 Initiate (0) Oct 17, 2013 Arizona

    AZ Wilderness is worth the trip 110% I went with a brewer who used to own a brewery in Oregon the other day and he said that they use natural carbonation on their beers. I didn't ask but you could taste it. If someone isn't used to that then I could see why someone would say they lacked carbonation. All their beers are solid and they are worth all the hype
     
  23. sammyg832

    sammyg832 Initiate (0) Oct 17, 2013 Arizona

    Bourbon County definitely has more barrel presence. For me it took the best elements of all imperial russian stouts. The base beer was exceptional, great barrels, and the light jalapeno finish. It was one of the best stouts I've had and prefer it much more than Bourbon County. That may just be me though and I love Bourbon County
     
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  24. luwak

    luwak Aspirant (217) Mar 2, 2010 Arizona

    Well I admit I was a skeptic. Living in AZ, I'm like the anti-homer, I tend to marginalize and drop expectations for any AZ brewed beer. I don't mean to but I've been here a decade and I also travel allot. So I know where we as a state stand
    This beer however shocked me.
    Its really good.
    Not great .
    But really good
    The mouth feel is awesome. Slick sticky and smooth. Its think but still coats the tongue and leaves a wonderful sweet/boose aftertaste.
    The barrel presence isn't off the charts but its intense for something that wasn't aged very long in barrels.
    The carbonation is low, which I think is an issue for them (esp with the IPAs) but it works fine for this sticky stout.
    I do hope they make this again If they do i'll be waiting in the line
    Big huge, giant, thanks to @BobLoblaw for this gift! He might be AZ's nicest BA.
     
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  25. sammyg832

    sammyg832 Initiate (0) Oct 17, 2013 Arizona

    I was skeptical at first too. I never have any high expectations for an Arizona brewery. AZ Wilderness and Fate are the only 2 that I truly like and have really impressed me.

    They'll definitely be making the Presidential Stout again. At least I hope. Will be interesting if they use different barrels or mix up the ingredients a bit in the future. I loved how the carbonation was low on it. It tasted like it was aged for 2-3 years which gave it a real complexity that I liked.
     
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  26. sonsofauerbach

    sonsofauerbach Initiate (166) Sep 30, 2013 Vermont
    Trader

    I tried it on the day of the release and then again last weekend - IMHO it's gotten better with a little time.
     
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  27. mitchgx

    mitchgx Devotee (413) Aug 7, 2005 Arizona

    It help up in the growler for this long?
     
  28. sonsofauerbach

    sonsofauerbach Initiate (166) Sep 30, 2013 Vermont
    Trader

    It did indeed. Pretty sure the growlers were purged w/ C02 and they were definitely sealed tight…it was a bitch to unscrew.
     
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