Tuesday night. 9:12pm. I have virtually nothing interesting to say about today. There was work. There was dinner. There was a couple games of Banana Grams. Last night was more interesting. My buddies Kevin and Sean took me to the Bruins game and the Bruins smoked their opposition. Great times.
With work, food, and games behind me, it’s time to drink a beer. Not just any beer though. A relatively expensive bottle of Mikkeller Divine Rebel. As I recall, this 12oz bottle cost around 8-10 bucks.
This is an English barleywine and has a HUGE 12.5% ABV. Good thing it’s nearing bedtime…this sucker might make me sleepy.
I have a love/hate relationship with barleywines. As usual, I enjoy a sweet barelywine over a super bitter one. Given how strong of a flavor comes with barleywine, my love/hate feels are amplified.
Smells a bit of dark fruit. Tastes strongly of the same. Booze is super well hidden. Flavors are very complex. I can’t decide which dark fruit flavor is there: bitter cherry? plum? Raisin? The sweetness also reminds me of brown sugar or REALLY strong caramel. There are sweet notes as well as some bitter bite. Bitter is the primary aftertaste.
I frankly completely forgot that this brew is aged in Speyside whiskey casks and also contains champagne yeast. I can’t pick up any typical notes of beer aged in whiskey casks – no vanilla, no oak, no peat, etc.
I’m also surprised by the carbonation. Sometimes a big beer like this will lack carb, but this puppy is packing a fizzy punch.
I’m not bonkers for the beer, and (especially given the price) I won’t be buying it again. I would recommend that you try it though given how interesting and unique the beer is.