Friday, October 12, 2012

Sampling Session -- October 6, 2012

It was a cool cloudy day, and a bit windy at up Lefty's place high in the hills above Kyoto. Five of us gathered for an unusual sampling session -- saisons and stouts, two radically different styles, but two that all of us love.

We went through about ten of each, with the saisons first of course.

Here are some of the standouts:


Hill Farmstead E.         4.5 (out of 5)
Manure demons escaping into the ether, crushing citrus fruit and raining it down on the earth. Explosions of fruit in the initial; mid palate is full of overripe and even rotten fruit; final is sharp and tart and stays on the tongue a good long while. Exceptionally complex, in both aroma and flavor. One guy at the table kept a quarter-glass of this for a few hours, so we could occasionally have a scent of it. Transporting and transfixing beer.

Fantôme Santé-12!     4.3
2008 vintage. Chopped weeds, pencil lead, and lemon pie aromas. Cloudy yellowish-orange. Lemon dominates the initial; candi sugar sweetness emerges in mid palate; then smooth mild lemon; subtle bitter finish. Very smooth, with a complex aroma. This one has aged very well.

Boulevard Smokestack Series - Saison Brett     4.1
2012 vintage. Sweetish, light lemon, slight Brett notes in aroma. Clear pale yellow color. Smooth, light peach and kiwi flavors. Mild mid palate and final. As smooth as can be. Maybe it needs some aging. I’ve had an earlier vintage and it was quite a bit better than this one.


Struise Black Albert     4.2
Heavy dark fruit, stewed prunes and raisins. Strong fruit: berries with crushed fruit in mid palate; smooth balanced finish. Outstanding aromas and flavors, fresh and juicy

Struise Cuvée Delphine     4
2009 vintage. This is Black Albert aged in Four Roses barrels. Smooth refined dark fruit aromas. Dark, near black, translucent at edges. Very smooth, with chocolate flavors blending nicely. Balanced and matured.

Mikkeller Black Hole Barrel Aged Edition Cognac     4
Dark chocolate aroma, along with a chemical, phenolic note. Initial flavor features a big burst of chocolate and vanilla; mid palate is sweet chocolate cake. Then the alcohol blasts through and stays strong in the aftertaste. A young and promising imperial. I'd like to have it again in a year or two.

Founders KBS (Kentucky Breakfast Stout)     4
Super strong coffee syrup, sweet chocolate aromas -- then the bourbon sneaks in and takes over. Coffee flavors begin smoothly, and then go a bit harsh. The bourbon complements (and does not overwhelm) the aromas and flavors. Maybe a touch past its prime. I had the same vintage two years ago, and it was much richer and fuller.

No comments:

Post a Comment