What to call these beers? For the last few years, brewers have been getting together to make something new together. This one has a deeper back story than most but the point is the same. In the end they are joint projects, opportunities to get together, to share and learn. And no doubt to have a lot of fun. But what do they offer us, the consumer? They are the specials of the specials. The seasonals with only one season. Yet surely they have to stand up for themselves as beer and not be the wall hanging commemorative china plate of the beer world. What can I learn from just this bottle?
Blended three years ago, it pours a lovely light cola colour with a frothy deep cream head. The aroma (aka smell) is dandy - date and sharp apple.with a floral thing that is almost rose. On the sip and swish, there is plenty of rich pumpernickel malt but with that Avery drying hard water. Dark chocolate, dark plum and a nod to cinnamon with an interesting juiciness that nods to pear or white grape. It is styled as a Belgian strong dark ale and that makes sense. Yet there is an the underlying tone. The hard water for me is not working but that is a personal thing for me that I have noticed since I tried a line up from Colorado's Great Divide. I am a soft water man. Yet there is a rich plum dark sugar finish. Solid if, for me, slightly sub-moreish.
Plenty o' BAer respect. Take their advice.