July 2018 Cellar Reviews

Discussion in 'Cellaring / Aging Beer' started by CaptainHate, Jul 8, 2018.

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  1. CaptainHate

    CaptainHate Zealot (501) Apr 22, 2006 Ohio

    Dogfish Head Siracusa Nera 10/11/17

    Decided to cellar this to 9 months from bottling date to see if there's any improvement, about which I was skeptical because of how balanced the taste was originally. The pour into a long stemmed tulip showed no deterioration of the head in both size and retention. The wine aroma may have faded somewhat but there's still a pleasantly sweet hint. The taste is where the major improvement has occurred because it seems richer than it was previously with maybe the wine a bit more forward. I still don't taste nearly as much barrel as I'm used to and the alcohol remains entirely hidden. Mouthfeel is still fine so I'd say the cellaring was a success, given the subjective nature of every tasting. Maybe revisit this a year from bottling.
    cavedave, argock, BenHoppy and 7 others like this.
  2. Beersnake1

    Beersnake1 Poo-Bah (1,935) Aug 17, 2013 California
    Premium Trader

    2010 Pannepot by De Struise. I love this beer fresh, and have had it many times with 1-2 years on it. Never 8 years. This pours a nice dark brown with good carbonation. The nose is incredible. Tons of toffee, raisin, bread, and malts. Taste follows the nose. Nice a sweet (but not too sweet) upfront, with huge notes of dark fruit. Blackberries, cherries, figs, raisins. Lots of caramel. Mouthfeel is thick and creamy. This has held up really well, and I would even say that I prefer it with lots of age.

  3. bl00

    bl00 Disciple (339) May 13, 2013 Pennsylvania

    2010 Dogfish Head World Wide Stout
    If I'm remembering accurately, I found this in a random liquor store in Ocean City, MD around 2012/13.

    Medium pour yeilds under a centimeter if tan head, dissipates quickly to a slight collar. Opaque deep brown body.
    Nose is chocolate, Graham cracker, caramel pretzels.
    Taste is fudgy brownies, some vanilla notes. Toasted marshmallow comes out as it warms. Cocoa notes finish long and smooth.
    Mouthfeel is thick and chewy, some carb. No heat on the back end.

    Overall this beer has aged beautifully. Less heat than fresh, still lots of bright candy bar notes that made me love it the first time I tried it.
    ManapuaMan, argock, BenHoppy and 14 others like this.
  4. darktronica

    darktronica Poo-Bah (1,901) Aug 29, 2014 Indiana
    Premium Trader

    I totally agree, I love Pannepot and all its various iterations with 5 or more years on them. Despite knowing that most of the bottles I've had of it sat for years, dusty, on a retail shelf at room temp, I've never had a bottle that I thought was worse for wear.

    On the other hand, tonight I opened a 2013 Alaskan Barley Wine.


    This one is still really enjoyable, but I think I prefer it around 3 years old. All the signs of an English barleywine oxidizing favorably, plus a few signs that it's past its prime. Lots of plum, Christmas cake, leather, and brown sugar, but now also displaying some orange gumdrops and wet paper towels. It's trying to convince me that I should take up smoking cigars after dinner in the drawing room, with the rest of the old chaps.
    ManapuaMan, cavedave, argock and 13 others like this.
  5. TheGent

    TheGent Meyvn (1,442) Jun 29, 2010 New Jersey
    Premium Trader

    It’s been a few months since I’ve posted in this thread. I did not pull this from my cellar, but rather it was given to me a month or so ago by a generous BA who goes by @GreenBayBA

    Surly Darkness (10/21/2016)

    Appearance: Over time the head disappeared almost entirely but for a thin film across the top. Some sticky, bittersweet lacing was left alongside my glass. She’s got legs. She knows how to use them. No visible carbonation, but a nice hiss released when I got the wax cap off.

    Smell: The aroma of this beer is sweet, roasty, and piney. Powdered cocoa, milk chocolate, dark chocolate, espresso, raisins, figs, vanilla, marshmallow, a hint of cinnamon, a touch of wood, pine and a wee bit vegetal described as fresh pumpkin. The dark, dried fruits come through to me as a tawny port aroma. IF this beer’s taken on any notes of oxidation it’s just the right amount. The alcohol comes through just enough without being overpowering.

    Taste: I’m going to throw out the “follows the nose” comment with some tweaks. The woody and vegetal notes do not come through on the palate. There is a nutty flavor. This beer starts out sweet and shifts to bitter on the finish. I think part of that is driven by the roasty aspect of the beer, but make no mistake that there’s a piney, lemon rind, bitter hop component like you’d find in an American Barleywine such as Bigfoot. Picking an example for frame of reference. It’s not that bitter or hoppy, but almost. This is a big, flavorful beer. I will still be tasting it on my lips when I wake up in the morning. That’s a good thing. (And that’s what she said)

    Absent from this beer that I’ve had in aged RIS before (or even fresh) are the “soy sauce” and “meaty” flavors. If those are not your jam, no worries here.

    Mouthfeel: Although not the thickest beer I’ve ever had, this certainly is a chewy beer. The carbonation is mild and it feels silky smooth. The sugary sweetness coats the palate. There’s a pleasant warmth from the alcohol that fills the pipes.

    Drinkability: This beer is highly drinkable and enjoyable. While I’ve never had the beer fresh, clearly it has held up nicely, and there is really nothing off for me to mention. For a 12% beer it drinks easy enough. This is basically what I want in an RIS. IF I had more of this beer I’d be drinking them now. Really excellent, and well aged stuff. I’ve got about 6 ounces left by the time I’m done with my notes here so I’m going to put down my phone and enjoy the rest of it with some tunes.

    Cheers, and thank you, Micah.
  6. AirBob

    AirBob Defender (633) Jul 15, 2014 Massachusetts

    Victory Storm King
    Bottled pre-July 2014, but I'm unsure of the exact date

    Pitch black body. One finger of foamy khaki colored head. Excellent retention and lacing.

    Nose bring a soft note of chocolate. Berry-forward coffee. Stale floral hops, like an old English IPA. Some sherry-like oxidation compliments the berry notes.

    Taste is layered. Starts with notes of red berry and lightly roasted coffee. Middle shifts to deeper chocolate and espresso with some floral notes. A bit of the oxidation peeks through too. Finish is extremely dry and bitter - super strong, slightly smokey espresso. Hint of citrus. Old espresso grounds and citruscitrus on the tongue.

    Medium bodied. Extremely dry. Very bitter finish.

    The fruity/berry notes on thr nose and palate are the highlight. Outstanding balanced andacomplex aroma. If you like intensely bitter, but flavorful espresso, this may be your jam. A little muc for my palate though.

    I was inspried to age this beer by recommendations in this thread from years ago - appreciate the advice. It was well worth the wait.
  7. BenHoppy

    BenHoppy Zealot (521) Nov 15, 2017 Michigan

    New Holland Dragons Milk Smores aged 13 months:

    Poured room temp. into snifter and wow is this something. I think I prefer it best at 9 months but either way 9 or 13 its still better than fresh. The aroma is all marshamello and chocolate with flavors of the same. A bit sweet but not as sweet as fresh. can taste some graham cracker as well and probably best smore stout I've had. was a great nightcap last night. Only downfall in aging this is the bourbon faded almost entirely and is why I prefer this best at 9 months. But if you have any stored I suggest cracking one open now before it starts falling apart as I would not let it age past 18 months.
    cavedave, Bitterbill, argock and 6 others like this.
  8. BenHoppy

    BenHoppy Zealot (521) Nov 15, 2017 Michigan

    I had a bottle of this last night same date of 10/11/17. still had head retention and not oxidized by any means. I didn't get much wine barrel either and tasted more RIS flavor of chocolate but there was a slight hint of grape in it from the wine. I also taste zero harshness from alcohol and had a jelly wine stout mouthfeel. I didn't care much for this fresh but I did have it about 3 months ago and found it best so far at 6 months as I still got some wine barrel oak flavor at 6 months. What I hated most about this fresh was the medicinal cherry flavor which went away with age. I too have 1 bottle left and maybe should wait another 9 months to open. But so far my preference for this is 6 months, 9 months, fresh.
    cavedave, argock and CaptainHate like this.
  9. Beer_Economicus

    Beer_Economicus Devotee (439) Apr 8, 2017 Indiana

    They are the only brewery that I know of that reuse barrels. Still bizarre to me.
    CaptainHate likes this.
  10. BenHoppy

    BenHoppy Zealot (521) Nov 15, 2017 Michigan

    Weybacher Finally Legal aged 15 months:

    I can feel a creep of oxidation letting me know it was time to drink. probably could go another 3 months but I wouldn't go longer so if you're sitting on this I suggest drinking between now and October. I get still a lot of hot bourbon flavor, chocolate, vanilla marshamello fluff, and smokey salty bacon.
    TheGent, cavedave, Bitterbill and 3 others like this.
  11. CaptainHate

    CaptainHate Zealot (501) Apr 22, 2006 Ohio

    Founders Curmudgeon 12/30/2016

    Poured into a DFH tulip the color seems darker but there's no loss of head nor retention. The oak smell is still present along with a touch of molasses and a pleasant booziness. Taste replicates the smell but it seems more balanced than in the past. Bitterness in the aftertaste noted in February hasn't gotten any worse and might be less prominent. Cellaring hasn't negatively impacted this.
    TheGent, cavedave, Bitterbill and 4 others like this.
  12. maximum12

    maximum12 Poo-Bah (3,950) Jan 21, 2008 Minnesota

    Deschutes Black Butte XXIV

    The bottle is dated "Best After 7/23/13" so I think we're safe.

    So...I put this bottle away because it was originally a "fig-bomb" & I'm not fond of figs (or dates, as the label says). Six years later, it's only gotten worse. Whatever barrel & malt one was, this has turned into dates, dates, & more dates.

    Lots of variation in this series, & this one was this worst. Still is.
  13. argock

    argock Poo-Bah (2,862) Dec 30, 2006 Virginia

    2011 Stone Old Guardian Barleywine. Cellared upright, out of the light at 65-68F.
    Murky amber with short-lived beige head with a lasting rim but no lacing. Plenty of legs though.
    Delicious toffee-caramel aroma with only a hint of the citrus, pine, and earthy, herbal hopping of the fresh version.
    Flavor is exceedingly smooth and enjoyable. It doesn't have the spiky hoppy bitterness of the fresher vintages but still carries plenty of bitterness through, although the flavor is more earthy, herbal and tobacco-like. The caramel, toffee, and lighter fudginess create a slightly sweet but overall bold maltiness. Alcoholic no doubt with medium-high bitterness.
    Feel is elegant, smooth, an full with only light alcohol heat and low-medium carbonation to spread the flavor beautifully.
    I was worried this would have started to fall off given the high temp of my cellar -- no worries on that front though. This is drinking excellently -- I hope I have some more tucked away.
  14. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (6,264) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
    Premium Trader


    April 2016 bottle.

    Looks like the same beer when it was fresh eg not much foam or lacing. And of course, the colour.

    Still smells of vanilla and big Bourbon, quite boozy in fact. Hint or 2 of light oxidation.

    The taste is very satisfying. Vanilla and Bourbon working well together and unlike the smell, the taste isn't as boozy. Dark fruitiness going on telling me that my assessment of light oxidation is real but also welcome.

    High end of medium bodied, the carbonation is not all gone. I couldn't ask for a smoother mouthfeel.

    I had a fresher bottle recently and I favour this cellared bottle by a wide margin.

  15. cavedave

    cavedave Poo-Bah (2,468) Mar 12, 2009 New York

    While the raw tannic oakiness and sharper booze aspects of this beer have diminished, this 2015 Backwoods Bastard is drinking stupid good. Still a killer aroma of honey bread, treacle, hints of herbal bitter, even lighter hints of piney bitter, and bread dough. The taste is less strong than it was, but has become a blend of all the flavors in the aroma that is simply delicious. Add to this that the booze bite has mellowed, without disappearing, and IMO this is drinking as good as this beer is capable to drink. I get the feeling this is BB's sweet spot. Glad I have a couple four paks more.
    ManapuaMan, TheGent, argock and 8 others like this.
  16. BenHoppy

    BenHoppy Zealot (521) Nov 15, 2017 Michigan

    I've enjoyed this beer very much at 1 year but am excited for my fall 2019 in which I too will crack open a 3 year aged Backwoods although it'll be a 2016 and 2015, cheers!
  17. macrosmatic

    macrosmatic Poo-Bah (2,549) Mar 9, 2006 Florida
    Premium Trader

    I just learned a new word. Thank you sir!
    Bitterbill and cavedave like this.
  18. Dan411

    Dan411 Initiate (88) Mar 20, 2017 Missouri

    Backwoods Bastard was a beer I bought a bomber of, and avoided drinking for a few weeks. Mostly due to being unfamiliar with the style. That beer blew me away. I went and bought another one the same week, and it's in the cellar as we speak. Thanks for sharing.
  19. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (6,264) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
    Premium Trader

    You never heard of treacle down economics? :wink:
  20. CaptainHate

    CaptainHate Zealot (501) Apr 22, 2006 Ohio

    Damn I'm glad I read this because I was thinking of trying the last 2016 I have or one of the three 2017s I'm cellaring this weekend. They are now off limits until starting another year from now.
    the_ceeeeg likes this.
  21. Beersnake1

    Beersnake1 Poo-Bah (1,935) Aug 17, 2013 California
    Premium Trader

    2009 De Cam Framboise

    Look is dark orange - fairly murky. Nose is sour cherries, peaches, funk, and leather. Taste is mouth puckering sour!!! Very impressive. Also picking up nice notes of strawberries and cherries. Definitely a bit of funk. Mouthfeel is dry and nicely coating. Overall, and amazing beer that has aged beautifully.

  22. bartlebierle

    bartlebierle Initiate (53) Apr 16, 2014 Germany

    Sir knows how to keep hydrated like a Belgian in 38°C damp Badian heat.
    Beersnake1 likes this.
  23. argock

    argock Poo-Bah (2,862) Dec 30, 2006 Virginia

    DFH Olde School 2009
    Murky amber with no head or lacing.
    Aroma is spiky with alcohol and high caramel. Floral and lightly minty.
    Flavor is a lot of high caramel with a lot less hop flavor. Again plenty of spiky alcohol. Some toffee and buttery flavors like Werthers. Kind of one-dimensional. Alcohol is well hidden.
    Feel is silky smooth and lush.
    Nothing wrong with it but a lot less complex than most barleywines.
    TheGent, Bitterbill and maximum12 like this.
  24. dbrauneis

    dbrauneis Site Editor (7,771) Dec 8, 2007 North Carolina
    Premium Trader

    Olde Hickory Wavell Gunn (Bottled 05/17/2016): 4.33/5.0

    A: Pours an almost opaque yet still clear deep mahogany in color with moderate amounts of fine active visible carbonation rising along the edges of the glass and moderate ruby red + chestnut brown colored highlights. The beer has a two finger sudsy tan head that quickly reduces to a medium to large sized patch of very thin film covering a little more than 75% of the surface of the beer and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Light amounts of lacing are observed.

    S: Moderate to strong aromas of caramel + chocolate + toffee malts with slightly stronger than moderate amounts of caramel + toffee sweetness. Moderate aromas of vanilla + smoked peat + toasted oak as well as light flavors of scotch whiskey and light earthy hops + brininess.

    T: Upfront there are moderate to strong flavors of caramel + chocolate + toffee malts with slightly stronger than moderate amounts of caramel + toffee sweetness. That is followed by moderate flavors of vanilla + scotch whiskey + toasted oak + smoked peat. Light flavors of brininess and light to moderate flavors of earthy hops which impart a light amount of bitterness which fades away leaving lingering scotch whiskey + caramel sweetness.

    M: Medium to full bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Smooth with light amounts of alcohol warming in the finish.

    O: Really enjoyable and wonderfully constructed as I would have expected from any barrel-aged offering from Olde Hickory. Wonderfully mellow flavors of scotch and the aging has definitely not worsened the beer in any way (as good, though subtly different as when I tried it fresh). Excellent and drinks very easy for the strength though it is much more a sipping beer.
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