Rogue Hazelutely Choctabulous Brown Nectar Ale

Dear Rogue, please do not include any kind of pun in your beer names from now on. You're pretty clearly not good at them, and your talents at making beer should be enough to sell it. When you start to pun, it makes me nervous that the brewer had been distracted and may wind up with a bad beer with a cutesy name.

This beer is not black. It may look that way in the photo, but it's actually semi-light-permeable. It shows the deep, deep blood red color when you shine a light through it, and the light tan head atop it allows the highly sweet, chocolaty aroma to spread out pretty well. The nuts back it up, and the beer is consequently pretty enticing.

First sip has a lot more smoke than I expected. The entire back-end of the beer is almost nothing but smoke after the sweet chocolate, nutty front. It's not bad, but the fact that the beer proudly claims that this is like candy in a bottle is counter to the actual taste. Maybe it's only because I'm sipping and not drinking like a man.

Tip-in is syrupy sweet with cherries, grains, and chocolate holding their own against the very light carbonation tingle. The middle comes with a bit of smoke at the back of the throat where it is joined by carbonation that gets a bit more intense, the bottom of the drink is watery, and the flavor devolves into a kind of nutty slurry. The finish is a larger hit of nuts and smoke accompanied by bitterness and even a bit of earth.

Bottom Line: Not candy in a bottle. Not really a good dessert beer. Not a great beer overall.



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