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.
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
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