A buddy of mine at Dogfish Head sent me a great little gift package over the holidays. It contained many of their big beers that he had been cellaring. Thanks dude!
Last night, it was bone-chilling cold in Dallas, so I lit a fire and poured myself an ’05 Oak Aged Immort Ale. This is a strong ale around 11% abv..
Classify this beer as a Strong Ale or Barleywine – doesn’t really matter. Call me crazy, but I am not a huge fan of Oak Aged Beer. Well, I may be now. But, more often than not, its a whiskey barrel and the beer tastes a lot like the whiskey, which strangely enough (being a Food and Beverage director for 15 years) I have never really developed a palate for… Beer is my drink of choice – a regulator – I get full or sleepy before things go south.
This beer pours a deep amber – burnt orange with a nice tan head that fades. The aroma is complex with some peat, vanilla, maple or caramel and just a touch of alcohol. The mouthfeel is velvety smooth and lingers well after the beer goes down. I like it’s smooth texture and range of flavor, plus it warms the belly. A few sips in and I’m relaxed and very pleased with this beer. The toffee and vanilla flavors were most pronounced. This beer was a special ’05 vintage and I am sure it gets better every year. I just couldn’t wait any longer. Most big beers just drink better after a year or so – 120 IPA comes to mind… I’ll save that one a few years more.
Looking forward to my next beer – will it be Burton Baton or World Wide Stout? It was Burton Baton – more on that later. I gave the World Wide Stout to Marc in Fort Worth. I think he likes the Dogfish.