It’s safe to say yesterday may have been the day I was looking forward to most all year. I finally launched the website for my business after weeks of reminding the developer it was overdue. But beyond that, I knew it was the one-year anniversary of Port City Brewing Company, and they were releasing One, a special anniversary brew. And, wifey and I were meeting a bunch of friends for drinks and dinner. Stick with me here, because all of these things come together.
I promptly arrived at Port City’s tasting room at 6:00 pm on the dot (when they first tapped the kegs) and found it absolutely mobbed. Put it this way – they kicked the first keg about 10 minutes after they tapped it. I finally got a few growlers of One and made my way home, but had no time left to try it before I left to meet people for dinner.
But I was in luck! The restaurant we went to had One on tap, and it tasted glorious. Combined with me wanting to blow off some steam after a crazy week, I soon found myself five Ones deep…and a little fuzzy. Wifey unceremoniously cut me off, and I may or may not remember every aspect of dinner.
So that brings me to the review – One is incredibly good, but incredibly strong. This is a Belgian Imperial Stout, and a damm fine one at that. It pours as black as used motor oil, with a cream-colored foam crown. The aroma was full of spiciness, but definitely had some strong alcohol notes in the background.
Tastewise, One is full of Belgian spiciness up front but I couldn’t place the flavor exactly. Across the middle, it got a bit hot with alcohol, and it ended up with lots of roasted malts and a classic stout flavor. There are some bitter hoppy notes toward the end, but they don’t stand out over the spicy stout.
So after getting pretty hammered, I wanted to know the ABV, but couldn’t find it online. I called Port City and they didn’t even know, telling me it was “somewhere higher than 9%
but they weren’t sure.” Ultimately, it’s probably a good thing this is a limited release, because the great taste and huge alcohol kick makes this one dangerous brew.
2/6/12 Update: the folks at Port City kindly got in touch with us to let us know that their One has a 9.5% ABV, and sent over a fact sheet on the brew. I’m still enjoying my growler of One, just doing so in a bit of moderation!