Thursday, January 5, 2012

Beer style of the week; The 12 Beers of Christmas, (but Great any time)

12th Day of Christmas (Including Christmas Day there are 13 Days of Christmas)

For the past 3 weeks we have merrily ventured through the kingdoms of Christmas Ales and enchanted Winter Warmer wonderlands. We bring you a sampling of diverse beers from around the world that are purely divine by nature. These are the splendid spirit-lifting brews to enjoy with family and friends as we celebrate this special time of year.

Some of these delightful beers are found in weeks past and in week’s future, others will be making a cameo appearance because of their special connection to the season. They come in all styles, varieties, and strengths. All are very good!

Day 1 – Sinebrychoff Porter

Day 2 – Geary’s Hampshire Special

Day 3 - Hooker Liberator

Day 4 – Trappiste Rochefort 10

Day 5 - Baden Baden – Red Ale (Double Red)

Day 6 - Samuel Smith’s Imperial Stout

Day 7 - Ayinger Celebrator Doppelbock

Day 8 – DueS (Brut Des Flandres

Day 9 - Schlafly Reserve Imperial Stout Bourbon Barrel 2008 Vintage

Day 10 - Traquair Jacobite

Day 11 – Rigor Mortis ABT

Day 12 – Thomas Hardy’s Ale - O’Hanlon’s Brewing – Lawrence, England – 11.5% ABV

8.5oz brown bottle. 2003 No. 001484 Poured at 52F into a Gouden Carolus D'or glass.

It pours an orange-hued dark teaky amber with a small off-white head along with small bubbles, which cling to the bottom of the glass..

Smells of toffee, oak, malt and rum dominate. A light whiff of hops follow.

As immature as the brew is, it displays an aged and mature character of flavors. Caramel malt, honey and taste of milk chocolate are quite upfront. A hint of sherry-soaked oak rolls forward.

Sweet lemon bitterness and orange zest tartness add a near perfect balance to the malty sweetness. Now, the sad news…they no longer brew this Old Ale. 2008 was the last year, so find some if you can…and please let me know where you found it!

Cheers! And a very Happy Little Christmas!

Quote: “The high and mighty town’s ale I did drink there, It made my brains to caper and career, It was of such strong and magnificent force, To knock me in five miles, twice from my horse.” – John Taylor – 1580 – 1653 - from ‘The Bard of Beer’.

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