Which of these should I pull the trigger on?

Discussion in 'Cellaring / Aging Beer' started by Amerikon, Dec 14, 2012.

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  1. Amerikon

    Amerikon Initiate (0) Apr 17, 2008 California

    I've got a few older bottles from when I first started cellaring stuff. They're all singles so I've been hesitant to open them. As the title suggests, which of these should I drink and which might I want to keep sitting on?

    Mirror Mirror (4/09)
    The Abyss (11/09)
    Jubel 2010 (2/10)
    Rodenbach 2007 Vintage Oak Aged (Barrel 230) (2010?)
    Beer Geek Brunch Weasel (2/09)

    I'm worried about the Rodenbach so it'll probably be the first to go.
  2. dckepley

    dckepley Aspirant (201) Aug 13, 2006 Iowa
    Beer Trader

    I would drink the Weasel first. It has almost four years on it and I can't imagine that would help it.
    franklinn likes this.
  3. Knifestyles

    Knifestyles Initiate (154) Jun 7, 2005 New York

    Drink the Abyss and Mirror Mirror first....they certainly aren't getting any better more infected....
  4. whitehouse50

    whitehouse50 Aspirant (244) Dec 27, 2006 New Jersey

    I wouldnt worry about the Rodenbach. Being that it's a sour i'm sure it can hold out with more time. I would do the Mirror or Weasel. Those are probably more than ready IMO.
  5. Amerikon

    Amerikon Initiate (0) Apr 17, 2008 California

    The reason I was worried about the Rodenbach was that I recently had a 2 yr old bottle of Duchesse that had not aged gracefully. I think I'll probably pull them all except for The Abyss. I'll save that until I have a new one so that I can do a side-by-side comparison.
  6. FunkyMacGroovin

    FunkyMacGroovin Initiate (0) Sep 22, 2009 California

    Do you like sour beers? If so, I'd definitely hold on to Abyss/Mirror Mirror for a few more years.
    crushedvol and 2beerdogs like this.
  7. Amerikon

    Amerikon Initiate (0) Apr 17, 2008 California

    I don't think either of those are infected, if that's what you're getting at.
  8. jtmartino

    jtmartino Initiate (0) Dec 11, 2010 California
    Beer Trader

    Aging the Beer Geek Brunch Weasel subdues the coffee flavor. Since the really high price of the bottle is attributed somewhat to the presence of the coffee, I think that aging it any more is probably not the best idea, so I'd probably go with that one first.
  9. Brew33

    Brew33 Crusader (748) Oct 24, 2007 Ohio
    Beer Trader

    That's because Duchesse is gross fresh or aged.
    GrindFatherBob and Duff27 like this.
  10. WickedGoodBBQ

    WickedGoodBBQ Initiate (0) Mar 8, 2012 Massachusetts
    Beer Trader

    I would drink them all.
    GRG1313 likes this.
  11. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (5,329) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
    Supporter Beer Trader

    Open the 09 The Abyss. If not infected, it's something special. If infected, don't drain pour it. Mix it with a good IPA and it becomes drinkable.
  12. StaveHooks

    StaveHooks Meyvn (1,348) Nov 18, 2008 Oklahoma

    I believe that Rodenbach and Duchess are pasteurized anyway.
  13. HeadyTheElder

    HeadyTheElder Disciple (389) Nov 3, 2012 Louisiana
    Beer Trader

    I wouldn't shoot any of those fine beers.
  14. HeadyTheElder

    HeadyTheElder Disciple (389) Nov 3, 2012 Louisiana
    Beer Trader

    Why would it be "infected"? Not sure what this means.
  15. Bitterbill

    Bitterbill Poo-Bah (5,329) Sep 14, 2002 Wyoming
    Supporter Beer Trader

    I bought a case of the 2009 and drank a couple right away. They were splendid. I left the rest in my cellar and then opened one...a nasty sour smell and an even nastier sour taste invaded that bottle and the other 8. Deschutes acknowledged the problem and offered refunds for the bad bottles.

    I reckon some cross contamination made it so.
  16. JebediahScooter

    JebediahScooter Initiate (0) Sep 5, 2010 Vermont

    It's pretty likely that those two beers are infected. The majority of people opening them report the same. If you somehow got a clean bottle, it will be lights out. '09 Abyss made me want to vomit...it smelled like cigarette butts in a urinal.
  17. 2beerdogs

    2beerdogs Poo-Bah (1,883) Jan 31, 2005 California
    Supporter Subscriber Beer Trader

    ^^^ "...And let God sort 'em out." :grinning:
  18. IKR

    IKR Zealot (576) May 25, 2010 California
    Beer Trader

    You may be pleasantly surprised with the 2009 Abyss. I got 6 2009 Abyss's when they were released and all were excellent. The last one I opened 6 months ago and it blew away the 2011 and 2012 vintages I had.
  19. Amerikon

    Amerikon Initiate (0) Apr 17, 2008 California

    I know Deschutes did a mini recall on those 09 beers, but I'm basing my assumption on the fact that the fresh versions of those beers (that I bought at the same time) didn't have any problems. I guess if the infection was minor it might not show for a few years. We'll find out!

    I can see how a sour Abyss would be pretty nasty, but Mirror Mirror + Brett could be interesting.
  20. Amerikon

    Amerikon Initiate (0) Apr 17, 2008 California

    I didn't see this post when I replied just now. I guess my confidence is misplaced then.
  21. JebediahScooter

    JebediahScooter Initiate (0) Sep 5, 2010 Vermont

    I think the issue is that an infected beer doesn't just mean that some brett got into it. There are all sorts of nasty bacteria and whatnot that can make a brew pretty gross and not like what you'd get from having a good, controlled inoculation of brett/pedio/lacto that a brewer has worked to cultivate. For example, acetobacter will turn a beer to vinegar if it takes hold. Abyss '09 isn't just sour...it was kind of putrid/rotten when I had it.

    Also, infections do take time to show themselves (that's why sour beer brewing takes a long time). Not perceiving anything in a fresh batch that then goes bad doesn't mean that it's minor necessarily...some of the bacteria and yeast take a long time to work because they're eating the more complex sugars, which require more to process.
  22. Amerikon

    Amerikon Initiate (0) Apr 17, 2008 California

    Ok. The press release that Deshcutes put out a while back made it seem like the infection was brett from the barrels they used for aging.
    I suppose I'll find out soon enough...
  23. GRG1313

    GRG1313 Poo-Bah (3,472) Jan 15, 2009 California
    Supporter Beer Trader

    Respectfully, none of these beers will get better. They are all fading and fading away. Drink now and purchase others for aging. Most beers can't take 4 years. I've opened a gang of beers from 2009 in the past several weeks and all were far from their best, if not far from when bottled. The exception was 3F Gueuze (of course) and Black Tuesday. Naturally there are lots of others but most beer just can't take over a year or two and still resemble what they're supposed to be. JMO
  24. kscaldef

    kscaldef Initiate (0) Jun 11, 2010 Oregon
    Beer Trader

    As mentioned, the 09 Abyss and Mirror Mirror might be infected. I'd just open them and see and be prepared to dump them and open something else. If you get lucky, they are probably drinking really well.

    Jubel 2010, IMO based on having one roughly every 6 months since release, is not getting any better. Would also drink that soon.

    The last time I opened a 2007 Rodenbach (about 18 months ago) it was lovely. Haven't had one more recently than that.
  25. Amerikon

    Amerikon Initiate (0) Apr 17, 2008 California

    So in the last few weeks, I've tried a few of these beers. I've had the 4yo and 2yo bottles of Beer Geek Brunch Weasel and the Mirror Mirror.

    The 4yo Weasel was part of an Imperial Stout tasting and didn't go over so well. I think it's biggest problem was how dry it was compared to the others. We drank it right after a fresh Black Xantus which was much richer so the poor Weasel didn't stand a chance. I drank the 2yo Weasel on its own and it was much much better. There was a bothersome amount of sludge in the bottle but I just left the last sip in my glass to avoid it.

    I'm drinking the Mirror Mirror as we speak and it's excellent. Really complex. It's sweet with a lot of those nice dark fruit flavors but it's not cloying. The sweetness is brushed away by a mild bitterness and the bite of alcohol. I wish I had more.
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