Dogfish Head Oak Aged Noble Rot

Dogfish Head is excellent! Well, maybe kinda crappy. No wait, I mean great! The heck with it, let's settle on middle of the road. Suffice it to say that these guys experiment enough to keep things interesting, but they have that spark that indicates that they are fairly skilled at the whole thing. You're going to have some losers in there when you experiment, but at least you're pushing the envelope.

Pale yellow and clear as a summer morning sky, the head on this beer dissipates very quickly to form a simple single-layer mask of bubbles on top. The aroma is pungent and fruity. It smells of grapes and apples along with grains and spices. Honestly, it's mostly apples. If I was just judging based on the aroma I would swear this was another hard apple cider.

First sip is a WHOLE LOT different from the aroma. It's soured wine made from green apples and some very, very funky yeast. The spices appear to be there so that the taste doesn't run away with itself, but it is only doing a nominal job of doing that, as the taste goes every which direction at once. It's not bad, but it would probably take half the bottle just to decide if I liked it with sipping alone.

Tip-in is very light carbonation tickle with grapes and sour green apples and grains. The middle brings a quite delightful bready flavor with the fruit becoming almost entirely muted. The drink until now has been very relaxed, but that's about to stop as the finish takes hold. The sour wine taste grips the mouth solidly, and earth underpins the whole thing. It's an abrupt end to an interesting beer.

Bottom Line: Better as it warms, and certainly different than any beer I've had before, it is an experiment that has done pretty well.



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