Holy adjuncts! The Canadian version of this ale - found by surprise at the LCBO this weekend - has to have ingredient listings in English and French plastered on the neck with a bubble jet quality label. And what secrets it reveals: water (ok), malt (of course), hops (fine), yeast (sure, sure), chicory (well, that is its name), coffee (huh?), st. john's wort (whaat?), licorice root (wow). Me thinks these Delawariarian guys are up to something.
The beer pours a deep mahogany under a quickly dissipating mocha head. It is fairly light bodied for the style. The first thing you notice is a pronounced acidic lemoniness, then multi-layered roasty coffee huskiness underneath. Below that is creamy yeast. It is not unlike the idea of a black forest cake with lemon rather than cherry. Yes, that makes it a bit weird. The brewery says this. The beer advocates say this. They are having a hard time describing what I am calling the lemon. It could well be the st. john's wort - some say "astringent", some "fruitiness". It is balanced and I don't think this is an off bottle - but just don't expect what you have thought was a stout before. Should you?
Later: ...you know...if they had called with chicory old style porter I think it would make more sense.