Tasting: December 8, 2012
Style: Cuvee (Belgian Strong and Bourbon Barrel Aged Stout)
Kane Three Hundred Sixty Five
I can’t help but notice the cork & cage bottles in the beer aisle. They just scream out, “Hey, something special here”! In this case, it’s the celebration of the first anniversary of New Jersey’s own Kane Brewing out of Ocean Township. I’m totally interested in this beer — and for quite selfish reasons. I have a jealousy of other states that have have events like “Kate the Great Day”; “Darkness Day”; “Dark Lord Day”‘ and “Sexual Chocolate Day”. I know New Jersey gets a lot of awesome beer on our shelves and we have some very good breweries – but we just don’t have that one that would compare with the previous examples. But, let me not get ahead of myself as I’ve been burned by judging books by their covers or beer by their bottles.
This one is interesting. Kane has what they call a two-vessel brewhouse. They distribute at the shore and into northern New Jersey. This offering is a cuvee that spans their first year. It seems like the first project was to brew an imperial stout and age that beer in a used bourbon barrel for the following year. This past August, they brewed a Belgian Quad (4x strength). They then created this beer with a ratio of 30% of the bourbon barrel aged stout and 70% of the Belgian quad. The net result is an 11.2% ABV – dark ale.
I can’t go very far with this assessment as Kane Three Hundred Sixty Five may be infected as it has gone somewhat sour. Vinegar and sour cherry flavor up front — not what I should expect. Not much in the way of any roasted flavors. I’m sorry to say that this is $14 going down the drain…as is, it receives my bottom score of 59 points. How did this happen? This is a bottle conditioned beer, which means that a small amount of yeast is added to the bottle to further ferment the beer. Unfortunately, there are times when bacteria make their way into the bottle. Could be one bottle — could be all the bottles. The bacteria are faster than yeast and eat the sugars ahead of the yeast and leave a acidic (like vinegar) flavor.