Bo & Luke Stout Against the Grain Just some good 'ol boys

Bo & Luke Stout, Against the Grain. An Imperial Stout made with smoked Corn, Rye and Barley aged in used Pappy VanWinkle Bourbon Barrels

(C) 2017 popsonhops.com

Bo & Luke Stout

Tasting: October 6, 2017
Style: Russian Imperial Stout
ABV: 13%
Beer #: 1,100

Originally an Against the Grain Brewery and Brouwerij De Molen collaboration beer. Here’s how the Against the Grain describes Bo & Luke Stout:

We took the ingredients in bourbon whiskey (Barley, Rye, Corn) and then smoked them with cherry wood and brewed a huge imperial stout with them. Then to top it off we aged it in Pappy Van Winkle Bourbon Barrels. The resulting beer is rich, smokey and complex, with a bourbon character of caramel, vanilla and spice.

Doesn’t that sound amazing?

Here we are at beer number 1,100.

Very active carbonation, bubbles out of the bottle and no matter how careful I pour, it leaves a very active khaki-colored head. Even my first few sips are fizzy.

First flavor impression is a lot of peat and damp moss flavor. I assume whiskey influence here. Some cherries, smokey. Unique flavor for sure. Not your typical imperial stout. I’m not getting any of the advertised caramel, vanilla or even spice. A bit of a let down for me, but still interesting enough to call it at 89 points.

As I usually do, here are some of my milestone beers…

Beer # 1,000 The Bruery Black Tuesday
Beer # 900 Goose Island Cherry Rye
Beer # 800 DeStruise Black Albert
Beer # 700 Three Floyds Dark Lord
Beer # 600 Alesmith Speedway Stout
Beer # 500 Fifty-Fifty Elijiah Craig Esclipse
Beer #400 Founders Bolt Cutter
Beer # 300 Mother Earth Trippel Overhead
Beer # 200 Theakston XB
Beer # 100 Sierra Nevada Beer Camp # 37
Beer # 1 Bear Republic Hop Rod Rye

October 6, 2017 is beer # 1,100 and 342 days since #1,000
October 29, 2016 is beer # 1,000 and 225 days since # 900
March 18, 2016 is beer # 900 and 172 days since # 800
September 29, 2015 is beer # 800 and 228 days since # 700
February 14, 2015 is beer # 700 and 163 days since # 600
September 5, 2014 beer # 600 and 300 days since # 500
November 9, 2013 was beer #500 and 340 days since # 400
December 4, 2012 was beer # 400 and 182 days since # 300
June 5, 2012 was beer # 300 and 195 days since # 200
November 23, 2011 was beer # 200 and 134 days since # 100
July 12, 2011 was beer # 100 and 244 days since # 1
November 10 2010, was beer # 1

How about another beer from Against the Grain?

Love the label art? Visit the website of the artist, Robby Davis.

And lastly, visit the brewery website here.

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Solstice Stout, Kuhnhenn Brewing Company Also...Bourbon Barrel Aged American Stout and some talk of druids.

Kuhnhenn Solstice Stout and Bourbon Barrel Aged American Stout

(C) 2017 popsonhops

Early man lived by the cycle of the seasons. They marked time through the position of the sun and other celestial bodies. Stone circles like Stonehenge acted as seasonal clocks marking the positions of the sun on days of significance. The summer and winter solstice were particularly important because it signaled the beginning of the ascent or descent of daylight hours.

The solstice was celebrated by pagan cultures for centuries. These celebrations are often connected to a mysterious group known as druids. Druids were said to be Celts from areas of what is modern day France and Great Britain. They were thought to be the communal repository of the wisdoms of the age. They were philosophers, teachers, priests and they were present throughout Europe. However, most of what we know about druids is very clouded. Julius Caeser noted that the druids preferred oral teachings versus written teachings so, it may be that we may never know more than we do today.

While druids are often connected to Stonehenge, written records show the first evidence of druidism comes more than two-thousand years after the construction of the ancient site. After a couple thousand years of existence, druidism was ultimately overshadowed by Christianity and pretty much disappeared in about the 9th century. I recall reading that December 25th was chosen by early Christians as the date for Christmas in order to overshadow the pagan winter solstice celebrations.

Solstice Stout
Tasting: October 6, 2017
Style: American Strong Ale
ABV: 16%
Beer #: 1,098

Solstice Stout is a blend of Kuhnhenn’s Fourth Dementia (4D) 96 points and Solar Eclipse (sorry haven’t had this one) that is further aged for three years. This is the 2014 release, so it was originally brewed and blended six years ago. While the name of this beer suggests a stout, this is more like a strong ale. The pour is cola brown and very still. I get massive flavors of molasses, raisin, cherry, fudge and sherry. A tad bit hot but not surprising for a whopping 16% ABV. Solstice Stout is absolutely delicious. 96 points.

Bourbon Barrel Aged American Imperial Stout
Tasting: September 30, 2017
Style: American Imperial Stout
ABV: 12.9%
Beer #: 1,099

This stout is aged in used bourbon barrels for two years. This happens to be a bottle from 2014, so this stout was originally brewed more than five years ago. Not to worry as the ABV is a robust 12.9% and should have matured nicely. However, I would say we’re running out of time.

Any of the advertised coffee flavor has disappeared. I get sherry, rich raisin, some damp wood. After five years, it’s still a tad boozy and astringent. Has some fudge and a very nice syrupy mouthfeel. Considering the pros and cons, I’ll still put Bourbon Barrel Aged American Imperial Stout at 92 points.

Visit the brewery website

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Lindley Park Stout Olde Hickory Bourbon Barrel Aged with Raspberries and Honey

Lindley Park Stout Bourbon Barrel Aged Stout with Raspberries and Honey, brewed by Old Hickory Brewing

(C) 2017 popsonhops.com

Tasting: August 4, 2017
Style: Bourbon-Barrel Aged Stout with Raspberries and Honey added.
Beer #: 1,085
ABV: 10%

Lindley Park Stout

Lindley Park is a neighborhood in Greensboro, North Carolina. The area is named after Quaker and local businessman John Van Lindley. In 1902, he donated 60 acres of land to be used as a recreation complex. The area had a man-made lake and amusement park. The lake and amusement park closed in 1917 and the town fathers set out to create a neighborhood with a park as its main element. Coincidentally, the community celebrates its 100th anniversary this year. Another serendipitous discovery is that the name Lindley comes from the English text, Lind – meaning tree and Ley – meaning clearing. So, it seems Van Lindley lived up to his name by clearing some trees for the construction of the lake.

Maybe it’s just the age on this bottle (probably 2 years old) but the raspberry is non-existent. Well-polished stout with robust roasted coffee, baker’s chocolate but soft edges and a plush mouthfeel. A nice stout, wonder what it would have been like with some raspberry. I’ll give Lindley Park Stout 92 points.

Was Lindley Park better than this Raspberry Stout?

Visit the Brewery’s Website

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Huge Arker Russian Imperial Stout, Anderson Valley At 13.5% this is a huge arker, ask anyone in Booneville.

Huge Arker

(C) 2017 popsonhops

Okay, what the hell is an Arker?
Check Meriam Websters…no luck, no such word.
Scrabble dictionary?…no luck, no double word points for you.
Check the Boontling dictionary?…uh-yeah, there it is.

Arker: verb (ar-ker) coming from the word ark which means to wreck something. It’s not a bowgley ( a whopper of a lie).

What the hell am I talking about? It seems my serendipitous beer journey has caused me to stumble across an archaic dialect that is native only to the town of Boonville, California. No surprise that Boonville is also the home of Anderson Valley Brewing. It only seems right that Anderson Valley honors their local heritage by naming this robust stout Huge Arker.

Boontling

As the legend goes the dialect was invented in 1890 by the youth of the community as a means to communicate so the elders wouldn’t understand. Kind of like today’s text jargon…#IHNI. According to legend, it was Ed “Squirrel” Clement and Lank McGimsey that developed Boontling and today there are fewer than 100 people in Boonville that still speak Boontling. Check out the link below as the dialect is quite extensive and entertaining.

The label also notes that they’ve been Bahl Hornin’ since 1987. That’s good drinking (or alternative to saying cheers).

Well, that was a fun side trip. Now onto the Huge Arker or huge wrecker.

Tasting: June 28, 2017
Style: Russian Imperial Stout aged in used Wild Turkey bourbon barrels
Beer #: 1,075
ABV: 13.5%

Huge Arker

Looks thin on the pour and not so opaque. My criticism ends there. This is a nice stout. Sweet molasses, some earthy peat, vanilla. Nice soft edges for a 13.5% monster. Although thin, the mouthfeel is sticky almost Bill Nunn (sorry, last Boontling reference – means syrup). This bottle is from 2014 and I’m guessing age seems to have served it well. 92 points.

Read more about the Boontling Dialect

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