Saison Brett 2014 (Cellared 2 years 11 months)- Four Winds Brewing


From Four Winds Brewing in Delta comes their “Saison Brett 2014″ a beer that was bottled on September 25, 2014 and consumed on August 28, 2017.  The beer pours a very cloudy orange colour with a tan head.  The aroma consists of brett funk, tropical fruit, yeast and a bit of sweetness.  The flavour is of tropical fruit, brett funk, earth, some astringency, yeast, earth and bitterness in the finish.  The alcohol content comes in at 7% with an IBU of 28.  While the cork wanted to shoot off of the bottle like a rocket this beer was tasting really good still.  Just be very careful pouring a 2014 vintage.

Commercial Description:  Aged in Okanagan red wine barrels, our Brett Saison is invigorated by wild yeast strain Brettanomyces, inviting hues of straw and earth.

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Monster Ale Barleywine 2007 Vintage – Brooklyn Brewery (Aged aprox 9 years 4 Months)


From Brooklyn Brewing out of Brooklyn New York comes their “Monster Ale” this bottle being a 2007 vintage Barleywine.  This bottle was opened on May 2nd 2017 making it in the neighborhood of 9 years and 4 months old if I assume the beer was released in December.  Unfortunately this beer was discontinued in 2013 after their cat named Monster passed away.  The beer poured a chestnut brown colour with a brown head.  The aroma consists of chocolate, toffee, dark fruit, brown sugar, sweetness and some mint.  The flavour is of chocolate, toffee, caramel, brown sugar, dark fruit, orange, sherry, mild resin, tannins and sweetness.  This beer coats your tongue with every sip.  The alcohol content comes in at 10.1% with an IBU of 47.  I am really bummed to hear of the demise of this beer as this close to 10 year old bottle tastes bloody amazing!

Commercial Description:  Brooklyn Monster Ale is a classic barley wine, a style of ale originally brewed by the butlers to the English and American aristocracy. It is brewed from three mashes of heirloom British malt and spiced with aromatic American Willamette, Cascade and Fuggle hops. After four months of aging, it has a magnificent burnished copper color, an aroma redolent of sherry, citrusy hops and fruit, a soft, warming, complex palate, a spiritous finish, and a strength of 10.3%. It is vivacious when young, but will age gracefully for many years, becoming more complex over time.

Food Pairing as per brewery:  Brooklyn Monster Ale is a fine accompaniment to a variety of cheeses (especially Gruyere, Stilton and aged cheddar), ice cream, flourless cakes, crème brulee and good cigars.

Here is my review of the same vintage from December 2012.

Boris Russian Imperial Stout Cellared 1+ Year – Strange Fellows Brewing


From Strange Fellows Brewing Company in East Vancouver comes their “Boris Russian Imperial Stout” the first ever bottled release from the brewery.  This beer was a collaboration with Brasserie Trois Dames from Switzerland brewed November 2014 and held in bourbon barrels until March 2016.  This bottle I opened in January 2017 which makes it 1 year and 2 months old since its bottling date.  The beer pours a black opaque colour with a brown head.  The aroma consists of roasted malts, ash, chocolate, toffee, vanilla and oak.  The flavour is of ash, burnt malts, roasted coffee, chocolate, toffee, vanilla, oak, bitterness and some alcohol.  The alcohol content comes in at 9.5%.  If you can find a bottle of this beer I would recommend picking it up as it is tasting really good right now.

Commercial Description:  Swift & Silent, owl glides through the dark, his screech believed to portend death & misfortune.  Some revere him as a messenger of the spirit world, an oracle of secret knowledge.  Inspired by owl’s omniscience this barrel-aged stout penetrates the inky depths of the soul, illuminating unseen truths.  A collaboration with Brasserie Trois Dams in Nov 2014, this was one of our very frist brews & has aged in Bourbon barrels ever since, developing a deep, dark, rich smoothness & leathery aroma.

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Thor’s Hammer Barley Wine (Vintage 2013) – Central City Brewers & Distillers (Aged aprox 2.5 Year)


Review Based on Vintage 2013 brewed in aprox December 2013 released late 2014 and consumed on April 28th, 2016.  Central City is one of the few breweries to age their Barleywine in house for a year before releasing.  I am guessing a little on these dates as There was a 2011 Vintage, unlabeled that was 2013 and a 2014 (The dates on bottles make no sense).  2015 still has not been released from what I can see (Well at least not the non bourbon barrel aged version).  I wish they would get their dates straight for this beer!

From Central City Brewing (Red Racer Brewing) in Surrey BC comes “Thor’s Hammer Barley Wine (Vintage 2013)” a bottle conditioned beer that has been aged for almost a full year before release!  The beer pours a cloudy amber/brown colour with a tan head.  The aroma consists of dark fruits and maybe cherry, candied sugar, toffee and and overall smoothness.  The flavour is of dark fruits, cherry, brown sugar, toffee, earth, ash, leather, bitterness, resin but not a lot of alcohol.  I am really surprise at how smooth this beer is tasting and it is my first beer in three days (not a thing you expect from a barleywine).   Thor’s Hammer has a commanding alcohol content of 11.5% which like his hammer, it should not be taken lightly!  Barley Wine’s should be aged as they reduce the alcohol flavour and increase the other flavours of the beer and this bottle may just have hit its sweet spot.

Commercial Description:  Matured for almost one year, mahogany in colour, this award-winning barley wine is crafted from fine barley malt exuding deep, rich notes of dried fruit, plum and candy with a walnut ester.

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Barley Wine 2012 (Aged 2 Years 5 Months) – Mill Street Brewery


From Toronto Ontario’s Mill Street Brewery comes their 2012 Vintage of their “Barley Wine” a beer I have had in my cellar for 2 Years and 5 Months give or take a few days.  The beer pours a cloudy ruby red with a light brown head.  The aroma consists of deep dark fruits, sweetness and caramel.  The flavour is of earth, dark fruits, sweetness, anise, toffee, malts and mild bitterness.  This beer has tons of body and is impossibly smooth.  The alcohol content comes in at 11.5%.  The alcohol content is so well hidden that little to no warming is present.  This was a very good beer fresh but it has really upped its game with some aged.  If you have a bottle in your cellar this is a good time to crack it open!

Commercial Description:  Barley Wines are traditional winter brews that originate from England. These robust ales are long-aged and can be enjoyed for years to come. English and Canadian malts, aromatic hops and careful ageing in whiskey barrels make our Barley Wine a complex and multi-facetted gem.

Check out my original review from 2012

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