The beer pours a deep copper in color. There is a short head of nearly creamy head that is very light tan in color. The aroma is malty, a bit toasted and roasted, caramel sweet, but also tangy, fruity, dark stone fruits, almost vinous, herbal, a bit of alcohol, a lot going on and hard to pick this one apart. The taste follows the aromas, lots of malt, yet lots of tang, dark stone fruits, with an herbal and grassy bitterness. It is medium bodied, moderately carbonated, and very bitter on the end. This is like a really good sweet white wine, mixed with a really good dark tea, mixed with a really good and malty Oktoberfest beer, mixed with a really good very herbal and bitter pilsner. All the parts are really good, but together, they clash for me and leave me confused what kind of beer this wanted to be.
I see that I liked this one better when I tried it in 2011. The ABV is slightly different, perhaps the recipe was too: This 9.87% ABV beer pours medium brown, dark copper and ruby in color with a small off-white head. The aroma is hop forward, piney, with some fruit and sweet malt. The taste is piney, resinous, honey sweet, caramel malt, dark fruit and light melon, with a somewhat bitter and sweetly dry finish. This is surprisingly sweet, but in a well balanced way, countered by the piney hops. Delicious.