Monday, May 26, 2014

Stone Matt's Burning Rosids

This is a 10.5% ABV Imperial Cherrywood-Smoked Saison from the Stone Brewing Company of Escondido, San Diego County, California. It uses the recipe of Matt Courtright, an employee who was killed in a forklift accident at their brewery.

I am a bit leery of any beer that says "smoked" on the label, they are almost always entirely too smoky for me. The beer pours an orange dark honey golden, glowing light amber and copper. There is a short head of off-white foam. The aroma is floral, tart and tangy, and lightly smoky. The taste follows the aromas, with a strong floral bitterness, less tartness than the aroma, and much more smoke than in the aroma. The alcohol shows as the beer is consumed, combining with the cherry wood to add sweet fruits like cherry and plum, that play off and compliment the tartness in the beer. The alcohol vapors bring all of the flavors together, off the palate, and up into the nose. The effect is pleasant and suddenly this beer becomes much more than it seemed at the first few sips. The more sips you take of this beer, the more all of its moving parts mesh together into something very nice and much less overwhelmingly smoky than it appeared it was going to be. The mouth is round and full, almost syrupy, but without being heavy and thick, seemingly contradictory, but then that is how it feels. Well done.

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