Tasting: December 19, 2011
In my days as a home brewer, oak barrels were ridiculously expensive, so to achieve the woodsy, earthy quality of oak I would go to the home brew supply store and buy oak chips. Basically, they looked like chopped up oak paneling and you’d rinse them, then add them to your fermenting brew for a given amount of time. While tossing oak chips in wasn’t as romantic as say aging in a french oak barrel – it was a means to an end. Great Divide has used this process with a couple of their oak aged brews.
Great Divide offers a few off-shoots to their Yeti line. These spin offs include Chocolate Yeti, Belgian Yeti and this Oak Aged Stout. I hope you take a minute to read my post on the “original Yeti” (see link below). I liked it and also touch on some other home brew stories. While I’m pitching some of my other posts — if you check out my glossary link below, I talk about serving temperature. The beer in my fridge comes out at about 50 degrees. That’s a little cold for stout – so in this case, I let this one sit at room temperature for fifteen minutes. This one pours a nice opaque black. It has a nice roasty aroma. First sip impression is a nice mouthfeel with some nice roasted, smoky wood over some subtle chocolate and vanilla. I’ll even give it a charred meat flavor. Some nice stickiness builds up on the lips. At 9.5% ABV – I might expect some more alcohol burn – but none is present. I like this just as much as original Yeti — the oak chips don’t necessarily move it up any rungs — but 89 is a solid score. This is a nice Russian Imperial Stout.
Read my review of Great Divide Yeti Here
Read my thoughts on serving temperature Here