Tasted Tuesday 25 August 2009. 750ml bottle, 8% Alc/Vol
Brewer Ben Kraus has turned up the temperature and laid down the gauntlet to all Australian micro-breweries with this beer.
Mean dark and angry looking like a Doberman guard dog behind a flimsy fence daring you to come near it.
The espresso crema coloured head is the flimsy fence between you and the beast within.
Aged in old red wine barrels from the famous Giaconda winery this beer has big aromas that are, strangely, peach and apricot (which Ben explains is most likely from dry hopping the beer with Nelson Sauvin hops). Undertones of cedery, smoky and floral notes come through too.
While there is a big hit of flavour the beer isn’t as heavy as one might expect.
That aside there is plenty to think about. It has charry, woody characters, bitter chocolate, coffee/cocoa, that fruitiness again and roasted nuts. Yet it is still smooth with a good level of sweetness and the finish is a big whack of extreme bitter hops that I could taste for minutes after. Alcohol is 8% and almost undetectable. Outstanding.