Samuel Adams Old Fezziwig Ale

Sam has produced some remarkable beers. At some point, I want to meet Jim Koch, son of the founder and current Chairman and lover of beer, and give him a hug. Sam Adams seems to have the magic figuring of beer. They can do some fantastic things, and it turns out well. It's not always going to be great, but they have a firm basis to work from.

This beer is a dark brown with a bright, sticky head that grips the sides of the glass as the beverage is imbibed. The aroma is strong with this one; I can smell it from my chair, and that is something that hasn't happened with a beverage in at least a few months. I smell malt and hops. There's a bit of spice there, as well, with some floral scents.

It has more malt than I expected. It also has some citrus from... orange, maybe..with chocolate and coffee tastes merged together. I expected more hops in here, but the expectation does not equal letdown. The taste is robust and heavy, and I might even taste a little berry in the beverage.

A bigger swig is called for. Really, it's always called for. ALWAYS.

The difference is both good and bad. Tip-in is sharp with a hefty maltiness to it. Then, a chocolate, bready center flows by the tongue. It has the same hints of citrus as it did before, but then the finish starts, and it's not as nice as it was with a sip. It gets kind of an apricot coffee bite on the end, and the coffee is particularly bitter. The middle, though was definitely an improvement on the sip, so it's a bit of a wash.

A complex and strong ale here, and I would drink another. It is definitely better on a cold night, and tonight all that warm, so it fits okay. I think snow on the ground would make it even better, but I'm a traditionalist.

3/5

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